A few minutes ago I received a message from Tatiana Yankilevich with an attached letter from my old Friend Semen Gluzman who is sitting on the 15th floor of the apartment building and waiting for Russians or death under the constant bombardment of Russian occupiers.
I take the liberty to repeat the conclusion of this letter:
"At that time, in the camp, I told you about the WWII time famous remark
of Ilya Ehrenburg the writer: if you want to live, kill a German. You hadn't
read Ehrenburg. But we started talking about something else: could
Albert Camus, a member of the French anti-Nazi resistance, ever utter
such words? You believed that each of us at war with obvious evil had
the right to think and act like this. And I argued that Camus could not
have said it.
Today, during the brutal war with Russia, I hear such words more and
more often. Yes, we kill because they kill us. We Ukrainians are being
killed in our country, on our soil, and we have to respond in the same
way. This is how resistance to Stalin's aggression was formed in
Western Ukraine, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia. In the camps next to
us, the last of them were serving out their astronomical 25 years terms,
staying true to their simple, indisputable truth: a cruel enemy came to my
country, I have the right to resist.
Tell me, my friend, do you remember them? Those who lived in the Ural
camp next to you. We were together then, we called it camp resistance.
Today we are forced to kill your compatriots, perhaps young men from
your parishioners’ families. I am sure that today you understand my
truth, the truth of my country. But you are silent, you do not exhort or
forestall from the pulpit. This is a sin, the grave sin of passive complicity