An Open Letter to Professor Waclaw Szybalski

WSzybalski1_thumb.jpg

Professor Waclaw Szybalski D.Sc. Professor Emeritus of Oncology


Anna Ferens’ documentary on the life of University of Wisconsin Professor Emeritus Waclaw Szybalski premiered in Madison, Wisconsin.

Professor Szybalski’s research contributed to an understanding of the genetic basis of drug resistant bacterial infections and the development of multiple drug therapies. His DNA research is used in the development of cancer treatments.

Both the film and discussion included Professor Szybalski’s life in Poland. He shared his love of his home of Lvov, Poland which before WWII was a diverse city with a Slavic and Jewish Polish majority along with Ukrainians and others. He spoke of the Nazis’ extermination the Jews of Lvov then the Soviets’ ethnically cleansing Lvov of Slavic Poles by expulsions and murder. Lvov is now the almost 100% Ukrainian city of Lviv, Ukraine.

Professor Szybalski participated in the resistance. The Soviets were allied with the Nazis from 1939 to 1941 and occupied about 1/2 of Poland. Trains crossed occupied Poland with Soviet supplies essential for their Nazi allies to wage war. On their return trip, the trains were often filled with anti-Soviet Poles being deported to Siberia. Among the earliest acts of resistance were attacks on those trains.

He also participated in resistance against the Holocaust which moved me to write this open letter.


Dear Professor Szybalski:

During the questions and answers after the December 8, 2014 premier of “The Essence of Life”, you shared how you helped gather information on the location and layout of one of the extermination camps. That information was smuggled out to the Allies with a plea to bomb the camps and their rail lines.

The Allies did not bomb the camps for reasons unrelated to the information you and others supplied.

The Nazi’s and Soviet’s conquests of Poland placed most of the victims of the Holocaust beyond the reach of rescue by military action for most of the war. After 1939, about the victims’ only hope was for the Allies to militarily defeat the Nazis as quickly as possible.

At great personal risk you succeeded in gathering intelligence on the Holocaust and sharing that with the world.

Professor Szybalski, you did not fail.

Yours, Leonard H. Cizewski


Links, sources, and more information:

WACLAW SZYBALSKI:  

soon“The Essence of Life” Trailer

McCardle Laboratory for Cancer Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health:

50 years of gene therapy: the contribution of Professor Wacław Szybalski to science and humanity, Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences

HOLOCAUST:

Martin Gilbert, Auschwitz and the Allies: A Devastating Account of How the Allies Responded to the News of Hitler’s Mass Murder

Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center

Virginia Holocaust Museum

Assessing Atrocity


Acknowledgements:

My nephew-in-law Marshall Begel was my editor for my open letter. He reviewed this for accuracy and clarity along with spelling and grammar.


In depth historical background and context are occasional features of my family history blog.


Revised: September 7, 2015

Shortlink: http://wp.me/p2ix3W-Ha

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , ,

2 Responses to “An Open Letter to Professor Waclaw Szybalski”

  1. Leonard H. Cizewski Says:

    On June 18, Professor Szybalski wrote:

    It was our duty and we tried to help the victims of Nazi and of Soviets regimes.

    Unfortunately Western Powers, Allies have failed to help with vital details.

    Thank you for your kind words, I agree with you

    Waclaw

  2. Leonard H. Cizewski Says:

    On June 19, 2015, Irena Fraczek wrote:

    Thank you so much for attending the Anna Ferens’ film
    premiere and your interest in Prof. Szybalski’s wartime participation in resistance and gathering intelligence about the Holocaust.

    The Essence of Life Premiere:

    Sincerely,

    Irena Fraczek

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: