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'Did Salamon Have a Son?'

May 18, 1986| Herb Brin, publisher of the weekly Jewish newspaper Heritage, printed an "Open Letter to Rad Artukovic," from which this is excerpted, in February

Rad, your instincts as a son confront you with terrifying realities. You have no choice but to proclaim your father's innocence. But Andrija Artukovic was one of the savage killers of all time. With this, you'll never be able to make your peace. I grieve with you your conscience.

But that's all I grieve, knowing that the Hitler puppet is back in Zagreb to face a court of justice for his crimes. The 700,000 men, women and children whose throats were slashed with hooked kama knives by your father's Ustasha (a Croatian nationalist group) at the Jasenovac slaughter camp died without the grace of hope for a fair trial.

Hard reading, Rad? Hardly the kind of things you read as a stockbroker.

Andrija Artukovic was in command of the Ustasha that organized Jasenovac. His name is on documents that I saw there. He was so proud to have been photographed with Adolf Hitler, his hand raised in Nazi salute.

Did you know, Rad, that across the Sava River from Jasenovac, the Ustasha created a graveyard holding 366,000 bodies? Victims were pulled across the river on a barge, there to be butchered and buried in mass graves.

Only one Jewish artifact remains of the tragedy at Jasenovac. It is a single tile on which the name of Baruch Salamon was scratched, apparently with a nail. The tile says Salamon was from Dervente and was transported to Jasenovac on Aug. 3, 1943.

Did Baruch Salamon have a son fighting somewhere in the forests, for freedom?

Was his son named Rad?

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