It’s safe to say that Warsaw was a dangerous place to be in 1944. Already oppressed for five years by both Soviet and Nazi forces, the Warsaw Uprising was the resistance movement led by the Home Army (Armia Krajowa) to liberate the Polish city from German occupation. This Home Army mostly consisted of volunteer civilians and a faction called “the Gray Ranks” who were merely the Polish equivalent of young Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. Despite being severely outgunned and outnumbered, the Home Army fought like the damned and while eventually obliterating 85% of the city’s structures, Nazi forces didn’t quite establish a comfortable foothold there. What I find particularly intriguing about this build by H2brick is instead of a sprawling World War II layout, he offers just a well configured slice of what it must have been like to be in Warsaw at that time.
The wide black band flanked by two rows of 1×2 Medium Dark Flesh plates establishes a solid stand for the scene and I rather like how some of the 1×1 bricks and tiles along the stairs and wall are not quite clicked into place, thus offering a more broken, haphazard texture to the terrain. The advancing Nazi forces clearly outnumber the fighting citizens in this diorama, and the one officer without a helmet; his blonde hair offers a striking visual contrast to everything else and somehow implies that he is the one in charge. As foreboding as this scene is, the builder (maybe knowingly) offers just a glimmer of hope for both the Home Army and the viewer. The solitary tree, with its roots exposed, is a life form that may hang on despite the tragedy surrounding it. The bit of graffiti on the wall, while not entirely intact, is the Polish flag and serves as a symbolic reminder of what the citizens are fighting for. While things didn’t go entirely well for the Home Army, their efforts were not for naught. The nation of Poland still stands long after what was supposed to be a “Thousand Year Reich” was wiped from the Earth.