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The Bitola Jews Part 1. Bulgarian anti-Semitism and the murder of 3200 Macedonian Jews from Bitola

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Published on Jan 12, 2010

This video is in Macedonian. English subtitles will be prepared and uploaded.

This documentary video was produced in 2006 on the occasion of the remembrance of the Bulgarian deportation of the Macedonian Jews from the town of Bitola on 11 March 1943.

Through interviews with Holocaust survivors from Bitola and friends of Holocaust victims we are reminded of the horrors of the Bulgarian Nazi regime that savagely deported more than 3200 Bitola Jews to the death camps at Treblinka where they were exterminated.

You will notice that the memories of the Macedonian Jewish Holocaust survivors in this video differ greatly from the official historical account of the Holocaust that is promoted and sanctioned by the Bulgarian state today.

The Bulgarian state fancies itself now as the saviour of the Bulgarian Jews despite recent evidence emerging that the Nazi Bulgarian Government of WWII conspired to and failed at exterminating the 50000 Bulgarian Jews. And while many Bulgarians have been successfully duped into buying the tall tales of universal Bulgarian opposition to the Holocaust, the memories of the Macedonian Jews tell a different story that is drastically at odds with the Bulgarian version of events.

Contrary to Bulgarian historiography, the Macedonian Jews from Bitola do not remember the Bulgarian Nazis as gallant protectors of the Jewish people during this terrifying ordeal. Nor do the Bitola Jews remember the Bulgarian Nazis to be hesitantly implementing the deportation of the Macedonian Jews, as Bulgarian historians claim. The Macedonian Jews interviewed in this piece remember the Bulgarian Nazis as willing participants in the Holocaust and brutal administrators of Hitler's Final Solution. The Holocaust survivors from Bitola speak of Macedonian locals who, at great risk, concealed Bitola Jews from Bulgarian Nazis and their agents who were prepared to dob in Macedonian Jews in the name of Bulgarian anti-Semitism.

Bulgarian anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial has no place in contemporary historiography. Bulgaria has still not apologised to Macedonia and Israel for the deportation and murder of the Macedonian Jews. Hopefully this video will shed some more light on this hitherto ignored issue.

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