I have come to a realization that the world is inherently imperfect and flawed, and the best heroes are still ultimately HUMAN. The religious desire to canonize anyone, and to make humans into saints is hence very counterproductive. I think that my grandmother's friend, who saved 1200 Jews in the Holocaust, is a true hero - someone who unfortunately has not been lionized by the history books as he should have been, but a true hero nonetheless. His name (was, he died a decade ago) Zus Bielski, and he will forever live in the history books as a great man. (and I met him!) And yet he killed whole families of Polish Nazi collaborators, as a punishment for their having caused Jewish death. They wanted to make a statement that Jewish blood does not come cheap. The Allied troops also were not wholly innocent flowers, having carpet bombed Dresden, and of course used the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
But ultimately, there is no real morality in war. We do what we can to survive. When monsters attack us, if we choose to live, we have to make choices: WHAT are we willing to do in order to live? What steps are we willing to take for our survival? And we have to inherently commit atrocities to stop atrocities. Stealing bread in order to live may seem rather justified to you and I, however, it still is violating someone's property right...
In the spectrum of good and evil, there are extremes on both sides, but ultimately, is anyone really truly good or truly evil?
The Polish government evidently does not think so. They are conducting an investigation into the Bielski Brothers, into their actions against Polish peasants. I think the evidence is in and the Bielski Brothers (who are all dead, save for Aron Bell, the youngest brother, who was 11 years old when this all happened), simply did what they had to do to survive and protect the hundreds of Jews they saved.
But, I ask you dear readers...how far should one go to save another's life? And are the truly great men the ones who can overcome their internal dissension, and do what is necessary to accomplish great things?