Lyubar KehilaLinks



Lyubar, Ukraine

49°55' N /27°45' E
205 km WSW of Kyyiv, 47 miles WSW of Zhytomer,
37 miles W of Berdychiv, 17 miles SE of Polonnoye





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Bolshevik Onslaught
Red Army Newspaper
Monday, January 17, 1944
Translated by Dr. Mark Fischer, March 13, 2019

Never forget, never forgive!

Formal statement:

We the undersigned have drawn up this document concerning the atrocities committed by Germans during the occupation of the village of Lyubar in Zhitomir Region.

The German devils took control of Lyubar in June of 1941. In the days immediately following, they began a program of mass extermination of peaceable innocent civilians. The Nazi scoundrels shot a sizable number of Ukrainians and Russians, but they especially brutally dealt with the Jewish population. In August of 1941 the Germans proceeded with a mass extermination of the Jewish population. After carrying out a mass roundup of Old Lyubar and New Lyubar, the Germans drove their victims to the area of the children's home. From there groups of 50-80 people were taken down into sand-pits a few kilometers from Lyubar and there were shot down. During this massacre, which lasted for several days, over two thousand people were tortured to death.

The Nazi beasts didn't stop there. In the surrounding villages, where a part of the Lyubar Jewish community were in hiding, they carried out more roundups. On October 29, 1941, the Germans again put several hundred Jews down into sand-pits and shot them. The Nazi thugs exterminated about three thousand innocent people, most of whom were women, children and the elderly.

Residents of Lyubar: L. Golovko, G. Okopny, I. Okopny, T. Rokitna, S. Bondarchuk. Captain B. Helfenbein [Gel'finbeïn], Captain E. Somov.

Lyubar's tragedy

The document before us cries out with human blood. A whole new category of evil has been added to the catalogue of crimes against humanity.

...People were living peaceful lives. They worked, they studied, they went to the movies, they listened to the radio. The children played gaily, bringing joy to the hearts of their parents.

On a bright day in July, a terrible darkness descended on Lyubar. The Germans arrived. What did they do first? They rounded up every living soul. From the streets and houses they routed out the complacent, uncomprehending locals. They took all the women, children and elderly into custody.

From citizeness M fman ⸺ [name is only partly legible] the Gestapo took three children: The oldest [girl], Fanya, was eight years old, and the youngest girl was four months old. “Let them go, spare them,” sobbed their mother. The reply to the entreaties of the grief-stricken mother was laughter. The children were shot. Citizeness M fman ⸺ became hysterical with grief.

Anguish and darkness, tears and lamentations engulfed the village. Every day the children's home saw hundreds more people brought in.

...Covered vehicles drove up to the sand-pits. What happened there on that August day was seen and heard by a resident of Lyubar, Lushak Grigorievich Golovko. He was mowing grass nearby. Unnoticed by the Germans, he stayed hidden and became a witness to the tragedy that befell those in the sand-pits.

“More than two years have passed since then,” Golovko said, “but the memory of what I saw then will never fade. The vehicles came right up to the sand-pits. The sides were lowered. A German tumbled people into the sand-pits, while two others shot them with submachine guns. The beasts, the brutes, what they did – I can't bear to recall it. I personally saw them throw babes in arms into the pits and kill them.

“More than two thousand people were brutally exterminated by the Nazis. But that wasn't enough for them. They were bloodthirsty degenerates. They reinstituted roundups. The tables at the children's home were again turned into a place where wails and sobs resounded.

At the end of October 1941, the Germans marched several hundred people – ill, exhausted, mere shells of their former selves – to the sand-pits. It was raining; it was cold and damp. They stripped them naked and ordered them to lie down on the wet ground. They were led into the sand-pits in groups of ten, where they were forced to lean their heads out over a hole and then were shot in the back of the head.

“Among the people who were shot was 3-year-old Rosa Dorfman. Pavel Oleinik describes the last minute of this little girl's life. The Nazi scoundrel decided to have a little fun with her and shot a burst over her head. The child turned toward her executioner, looked him straight in the eye and said, “Shoot already!”

Rosa's executioner shot a burst into Rosa; she tumbled into a hole, her head blown apart. Along with Rosa also died Valina Bondarchuk, 5, and her sister Svetlana, 3. But they could not have been the only ones...”

The victims of the tragedy in Lyubar call out for blessed revenge. With rivers of their black blood shall the German executioners pay for the suffering and death of Fanya, Rosa, Valina and Svetlana.

First Lieutenant A. Sterlin

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