Tuvia Bielski
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Tuvia Bielski activity map
Partisans activity marked in yellow as indicated by Aaron Bell.
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Tuvia Bielski was born in Stankiewicze, in western Belorussia in 1906. When Germany invaded Russia in June of 1941, Tuvia and his younger brother Zus vowed never to be caught by the Germans. Tuvia's extensive knowledge of the area saved his life, allowing him to move around frequently to avoid being captured by the Germans, who had a warrant for his arrest.

In early 1942, Tuvia began hearing rumors about partisans, and decided that if he and his fellow Jews were to survive, he must acquire arms and organize all-Jewish resistance groups. Along with two of his brothers, Zus, and Asael, Tuvia began
 
Tuvia Bielski    Photo 1
Tuvia Bielski - Date Unkown
organizing Jews. By May of 1942, Tuvia was in command of a small group, which by the end of the war had grown to 1200 people, and was known as the Bielski otriad. Tuvia had focused on saving as many Jews as possible, and would accept any Jew into his group. Many came through the family of Konstantin Kozlovski, a non-Jew, who provided shelter for Jews escaping from the Novogrudok Ghetto and worked with the partisans to free hundreds of Jews from the ghetto.

The Bielski otriad carried out food raids, killed German collaborators, and sometimes joined with a Russian partisan group in anti-Nazi missions,
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