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Growing Up Between Katyn and Auschwitz

by Maria Szonert Binienda

About The Book

The story of Danuta gives readers the human side of Poland’s fate in World War II. This book presents the war’s impact on the life of a young woman and her family while telling their stories in connection with the saga of the destruction of the independent Polish State and its people’s resistance to German and Soviet extermination operations.

The joint German and Russian aggression on Poland in 1939 was the reverberation of what Poland’s neighbors from the West and East once decreed at the end of the eighteenth century and had been patronizing to the onset of the twentieth century. However, in the middle of the twentieth century, the same decision of destruction and extermination of the Polish nation and the Polish state was made again.

A system must be created in which economic and military supremacy shall never lead to destruction and disregard of human rights, proclaimed the Polish Pope John Paul II on the 50th Anniversary of WWII.

Publication date May 26,2023
Language English
ISBN 979-8-88963-331-0 (Paperback)
979-8-88963-332-7 (E-BOOK)
Genre History
Pages 358
Interior Color Black and White
Book Size 8.500" x 11.000" (280mm x 216mm)

About The Author

Maria Szonert-Binienda

President, Libra Institute, Inc.

Polish honorary consul in Akron, Ohio

Wife of Dr. Wieslaw Binienda, is a Professor and chairman of the Department.

Maria Szonert is the Founder and President of Libra Institute, Inc. She is also the President of Kresy-Siberia Foundation, USA. A law graduate of the of the University of Warsaw and Rutgers University, she worked as corporate counsel on privatization and restructuring in Eastern Europe and as a USAID capital markets specialist for Europe and Newly Independent States. Subsequently, she served as Vice President and Corporate Counsel for KeyCorp in Cleveland. For the past decade she has been publishing extensively, drawing upon her post-graduate journalism training from the University of Warsaw. She collaborates with numerous papers, including a Polish-language cultural weekly PrzeglÄ…d Polski, focusing on legal, historical and current affairs issues. She is the author of World War II Through Polish Eyes (EEM Columbia University Press 2002) and Null and Void; Poland: Case Study on Comparative Imperialism (University Press of America 2008).

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland Witold Waszczykowski signed a decision on March 29, 2017 on the establishment of the Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Akron, Ohio, and on April 3, 2017 appointed Maria Szonert Binienda as the Honorary Consul of Poland in Akron.

As the Honorary Consul, Maria Szonert Binienda will serve to promote the development of friendly relations and economic, cultural and scientific cooperation between the Republic of Poland and the United States of America. She will also be responsible for Polish citizens staying in her consular district by helping them and protecting their rights as well as representing the rights and interests of the Republic of Poland.


Maria Szonert Binienda represents the American Polonia in the Advisory Council to the Marshal of the Senate of the Republic of Poland. As an attorney by profession, she is the founder of several Polish American organizations and holds leadership positions in many of them. Recently, she served as Vice President for Polish Affairs of the Polish American Congress.

Attorney Szonert Binienda represented some families of the Smolensk crash victims in the United States. As a legal expert, she testified on the investigation into the Smolensk crash before the European Parliament on March 28, 2012, She is also the author of 2012 Smolensk Crash Status Report and 2014 Smolensk Maze – Status Report. Her articles on the Smolensk crash appear in Polish and English languages.She is a contributing writer for the main English language website on the Smolensk crash “Smolensk Crash News Digest”
A law graduate of the of the University of Warsaw and Rutgers University and MBA graduate of the University of Akron, Ms. Szonert Binienda publishes extensively, drawing upon her post-graduate journalism training from the University of Warsaw and extensive experience in international affairs. She publishes in the American, Polish and Polish-American press, focusing on historical and legal issues, as well as foreign affairs.
She is the author of many English language publications on Poland, including World War II through Polish Eyes (EEM Columbia University Press 2002), Null and Void; Poland: Case Study on Comparative Imperialism (University Press of America 2008), Was Katyn a Genocide?, 44 Case W. Res. J. Int’l L. 633 (2012), co-authored with Michael Scharf Katyn: Justice Delayed or Justice Denied – Report of the Cleveland Experts’ Meeting, 44 Case W. Res. J. Int’l L. 535 (2012), served as editor of ‘Katyn: State-Sponsored Extermination; Collection of Essays,’ (Libra Institute 2012),and published extensively on current events in Poland, for example: Media vs. Democracy: The case of Poland, (American Thinker, March 5, 2016).
In August 2016 Ms. Szonert-Binienda was recognized for her scholarly contributions with the Professor Honoris Causa Degree by the Jagiellonian College in Toruń, Poland.


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