COPENHAGEN (Dec. 29)
The toll of Jewish dead in the Nazi conquest and subjugation of Poland, already reliably estimated at 250,000, or many times more than the combined war toll of all European combatants, is mounting steadily.
Nazi torch and gun are daily claiming scores, even hundreds of new victims in every part of the conquered territory. Disease and starvation account for countless others who have avoided firing squad, flames or death at the hands of individual marauders.
Today’s record, received here from trustworthy sources, is typical.
Several hundred men, women and children perished in the town of Bendzin when a Jewish-inhabited street was set ablaze simultaneously at many points. Those who were not burned were shot down while trying to escape. All synagogues in the town were razed.
Decimation was resorted to in the town of Sosnowiec when 250 Jewish merchants were arrested. Thirty-five Jews and Poles were shot dead after the discovery of the bodies of four slain Germans in the vicinity of Sosnowiec. Three synagogues were burned down.
Almost the entire Jewish population of Polish Silesia has been expelled. All synagogues throughout the province have been destroyed by fire.
Meanwhile, lesser aspects of the anti-Jewish persecution are continuing in evidence.
Circumcision and kosher slaughter have been prohibited in the annexed districts of Poland which have been proclaimed an integral part of the Reich.
Yellow armlets have been introduced in Czestochowa for well-to-do Jews, who will be conscripted for forced labor six days a week. Poorer Jews will be obliged to wear red armlets and to engage in forced labor three days in every week. Blue armlets have been prescribed for all invalids and those under 16 and over 60, who are exempted from forced labor.
The yellow armlets which Jews were previously forced to wear in the Lodz district have been replaced by two triangular yellow badges, one of five centimeters to be worn on the back. Wearing of the badges is compulsory for Jews, male and female, of all ages.
With a new ban on Jews as luggage porters and taxicab drivers, all means of livelihood are now closed to Jews in the Lodz area.
A strong guard has been posted between the new Reich frontiers and the rest of the occupied Polish territory. Jews leaving the Lodz area are thoroughly searched, all valuables are confiscated and they are freed under warning that they will be shot if they return.
The military has discontinued the hunting for Jews in the streets for forced labor. Instead all Jews are subject to work without compensation for any private services required of them by the Nazis. The Lodz Jewish Community has been forced to repair and equip at its own cost lodgings for military officers.