Life in the Forest

Former Jewish partisan Frank Blaichman discusses how partisans persevered in the face of challenging weather, hunger, and suffering.

Transcript (Text)

We went through many hardships, many sufferings, I can tell you. But somehow, we overcame all that suffering. And let me tell you another thing. The first two months we were in the forest, it was very bad. We went through hunger, scary beatings, all kinds of things. But none of us, including me, was complaining. You know what I was saying? This is still better than to be in a concentration camp or a death camp, no matter what it is. And tomorrow is going to be another day. That's [what] I was telling myself, and all the others were saying the same thing. And that's how we overcame all these things. You know, we were sleeping in the forest in freezing rain, in storm, snow, on the snow. The snow covered us up. In the morning I got up—[there] was a blanket of snow. That's how we were living for the first few months. Sometimes for several days going around wet, hungry, but still we didn't give it up. We were hardened, not softened.

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