Poland’s Holocaust

A family Chronicle of Soviet and Nazi Terror

The accounts, memoirs and letters are an interconnected chronicle of a family and a national tragedy, and should be read in their totality. Links and cross-references are provided.



Polish survivors of the Gulag

A fighter in the Warsaw Uprising

Poland’s tragic fate during WW II, particularly the Holocaust, is well known, including the fact that 6.5 million Polish citizens perished, of whom close to 3 million were Jews. This web site documents the horrors of Nazism, but as importantly it is a study of a chapter of history long misunderstood and even denied: Poland’s suffering under Stalinism and Communism.

Hitler and Stalin divided Poland between themselves in 1939, subjecting Poles to a double reign of terror. Under the Soviet occupation of Poland (September 1939 to June 1941) over 100,000 Poles were killed, including 27,000 Polish officers at Katyn and other sites.

During WW II, as many as 2 million Poles were deported to Siberia and other points in the USSR, half of whom died. Even after the war, between 1945-1955, tens of thousands more were imprisoned and executed by the Communist regime in Poland installed by Moscow.

I hope the material presented here will expand knowledge and interest of Poland and Poles during World War Two, and that it will serve as an educational tool for layman and historian to counteract deniers of the holocausts perpetrated by both Hitler and Stalin.

I dedicate this project to my parents and to Poles everywhere, as well as to Ukrainians, Balts, Russians, Jews and countless others who suffered under Nazism and Communism.

A great myth developed that only the fascist enemy was capable of genocide, of mass crime. If the crimes of the Soviet Union were to be put into the same category as those of the Nazis, the whole moral story of why we fought the Second World War would have been ruined. We now know that during the war, Stalin actually killed more of his own people than Hitler killed during the Holocaust.

— Norman Davies

My Toronto Star article describing the tragedy of my parents in WWII has grown into a family tribute, and a victims’ eyewitness account of a part of History still largely unacknowledged – Chris Gladun.

Christopher Jacek Gladun was born in 1951 and grew up in Canada to where his family emigrated from England as displaced persons. Sadly, Chris died in Toronto in March 2003. He held a diploma in Journalism from the Niagara College and a BA in Polish Language & Literature from the University of Toronto. Chris also acted as interviewer and researcher for the documentary film “Rescued From Death in Siberia”.

This content is now maintained by the Kresy-Siberia Group, which Chris was a charter member of and which is taking his website and his research work forward.