History. Holocaust Studies. In 1994 the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Office of the President engaged in a cover-up trying to convince American writer Paul Polansky that there were no longer any living survivors of Lety, the World War II Romany (Gypsy) death camp in southern Bohemia. Polansky found more than a hundred Lety survivors still living today in the Czech Republic.
The stories collected here are the result of his interviews with those survivors. Reading the survivors' own words shows why the President's Office in Prague does not want the world to know what really happened to the Czech Romany during WWII - because it is still happening today. Many romany died in Lety. Every day. Every day there were deaths. I was walking around the camp because I was working in the kitchen and in the laundry, so I saw many dead bodies. Every day dead bodies. They were all murdered. Murdered every day (J.S.).
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Paul Polansky is an American author and activist working for the rights of the Roma people (also called Gypsies). He has worked for the advancement of the Roma and acceptance of them throughout Eastern Europe and the Balkans. He has also lived with Roma for the past ten years in Eastern Europe, collecting their oral histories and writing several books about their persecution from the Holocaust to their current, desperate situation in Kosovo, Serbia, and Macedonia. Today he heads the Kosovo Roma Refugee Foundation (KRRF), an NGO working with the afflicted residents of the UN Camps in north Kosovo. From July 1999 until September 2009 he was head of mission for the Society for Threatened Peoples in Kosovo and Serbia.