The Bielski Brothers
The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Built A Village in the Forest, and Saved 1,200 JewsBook - 2004
In 1941, three brothers witnessed their parents and two other siblingsbeing led away to their eventual murders. It was a grim scene that would,of course, be repeated endlessly throughout the war. Instead of running orgiving in to despair, these brothers -- Tuvia, Zus, and Asael Bielski -- foughtback, waging a guerrilla war of wits against the Nazis.
By using their intimate knowledge of the dense forests surrounding theBelarusan towns of Novogrudek and Lida, the Bielskis evaded the Nazis andestablished a hidden base camp, then set about convincing other Jews to jointheir ranks. As more and more Jews arrived each day, a robust communitybegan to emerge, a "Jerusalem in the woods."
After two and a half years in the woods, in July 1944, the Bielskis learnedthat the Germans, overrun by the Red Army, were retreating back towardBerlin. More than one thousand Bielski Jews emerged -- alive -- on that final,triumphant exit from the woods.