Leo Scher was born in 1921 in Czestochowa, a city in western
Poland known for its shrine to the Black Madonna. The Nazis arrived
in Czestochowa very early in September 1939. Leo became a leader
among his family and friends, and managed to save both himself and
many other Jews by outwitting the Nazis time and again. His nerve
and courage were legendary, and to this day those that were with him
during those times speak of him with awe. At the end of the war,
Leo secretly transported a number of Jewish youths from Poland to
Palestine. The following interview was conducted by the Institute's Holocaust
Education Specialist, Plater Robinson.
My name is Leo Scher. I was born in 1921, in Czestochowa.
I'm very interested in understanding the atmosphere in Poland between the wars in terms of
relations between Poles and Jews. If you would try to describe the atmosphere in Czestochowa
before 1939, and if you have examples that might illuminate this atmosphere, that would be
helpful. For example, your father was a professional person, or not?
My father was a very professional. He was a politician. He was an elected official. And in Poland
an elected official is not just for salary, it's honorable. Dedication is to be patriotic, and he did it
with a great deal of happiness. He was happy about it, pride. He had a great deal of pride.
Because he was a very learned, very educated man, and in Poland to find a man to be educated,
like my father, was very, very hard to find. One out of a thousand. Or maybe more.
PR Your father was a member of the government on the local or national
LS Local, and state.
PR And the state in which Czestochowa...
LS Regional and local.
PR You were born in Czestochowa?
PR Isn't it extraordinary that a Jewish man would hold a prominent political office
in Poland before the war?
LS No, it was not. Because the population of Jewish people was so great, they
were always able to elect their official, their representative. If you need five thousand votes, you
can get it very easy. If you need ten thousand, you can get it easy too.
PR I was in Czestochowa last summer, and I know a ghetto was established in
Czestochowa. I wonder what the Jewish population of Czestochowa was?
LS To my knowledge, it was one third of the population was Jewish.
Czestochowa was a city of about a hundred and twenty thousand, and it was between thirty-five
and thirty-eight thousand Jewish people.
PR And did you live in the Jewish Quarter?
LS I have to. I have no other choice. I mean, I was moved into it. We lived on a
boulevard. The Jewish population was mostly, a majority of the Jewish population was very poor
people. Ten percent was the high class, aristocratic. Twenty percent was middle class. And the
rest, seventy percent, was very poor.
LS Impoverished. And they lived like a slum area, very poor housing, so naturally
when the Germans, when they established the first ghetto, there was a first ghetto in the
beginning, and then later after the evacuation, after the destruction of the Jewish city, at the time,
from 1942, in 1942 the city of Czestochowa has a population of forty-five thousand people. Of
course, the Jews from the surrounding little towns, they have to, they've been excluded from the
towns, and the Germans pushed them into the ghetto, and as a center because they want to keep
all the Jews at one spot when they have to do work they would have to go scatter all over. So we
had forty-five thousand Jews, and in 1942 when the selection was, when they shipped out the
Jews to the gas chambers, the liquidation of the Jews. It was Treblinka then, Auschwitz wasn't
finished. They shipped out forty thousand Jews, and the five thousand they left. Like my age, the
youngsters to do the work, they needed some work. And then they caught from the big ghetto,
from the forty-five thousand where again when they established the big ghetto, a house like this if
I have three rooms, three bed rooms, and this was counted as a room, the kitchen was counted as
a room, so five rooms, they put in five families. Four other families, no matter what. How many
children each family, and that's why the reason in Poland, everybody has more children than here
in America. Like we have six children in our family. I have two brothers and three sisters, my
father and mother, and even my grandmother lived with us. So then they need, they want to push
us together, the Germans, when they established the ghetto, they said, This is it. Put in three more
families in this house. And you can't say no. If you say no, you're against the rules. Every order in
Poland by the German government was under penalty of death. So nobody will say no. That's
what they saw it was.
PR I'd like to step back a little bit before September 1939, and to the period
before the outbreak of the war in an attempt to understand that atmosphere. For example, if you
and I left your home in the early morning and walked down the streets, what would we see?
LS A beautiful country. A beautiful street. Beautiful people. Everybody was
happy, everybody was poor but happy. Average person is satisfied. This is it. People were living
that way for hundreds of years. One was dressed well, one was dressed a little less well. One was
dressed nice beautiful new suit, coat and tie, a little hat. But everybody was happy.
PR And the language that we would hear on the street?
LS Polish. Polish and of course, it was always a certain section of the Jewish
population, and in this section you could hear the Jewish language, Yiddish. But the atmosphere
was nice. Fine, everybody was happy, going to work, coming from work. People who didn't work
were happy. Even the beggars were happy. Because when they begged they got what people gave
what they needed, and they were happy.
PR Market Day was Friday?
LS In Czestochowa it was Thursday, because Friday was a day it was too late to
buy for Sabbath. You have to cook it on Friday, but you not allowed to cook. Not everybody was
religious, but the majority they looked at the religious points.
PR And the peasants would come in from the countryside on Thursday?
PR And it was a colorful scene I imagine.
LS Very colorful. Horses with wagons bringing chickens and eggs and butter and
turkeys and vegetables, potatoes, onions, everything what you want to hear what you see. So,
fruits especially. The city of Czestochowa, it wasn't agriculture. But in big cities, never had
agricultural spot, most industries. Factories and so on. So all the farmers came into the city
whatever they brought, they always went home empty. They sold out. Everything was sold. And it
was plentiful. Food was plentiful. And I'm telling you, you could buy a lot of food for a dollar. A
dollar in our money was five zlotys, but for five zlotys a family could almost live the whole week.
So that's how, so food was plentiful.
(I left Germany in 1950)
In Czestochowa, eighty percent of the industry belonged to Jewish people. The biggest ones. I
would say ninety percent. Because wherever industry was in Poland was I believe to my
knowledge. They developed it, they developed a business, they were very good at it. Everybody
was comfortable with it. Now, the ladies in all those factories, were ninety-five percent non-Jewish ladies. So they had a good relationship. I don't know how much they liked the boss
(laugh). A Jew is my boss, they liked or they didn't like it, they have to take it. They have to go to
work, they have to learn a living. And this was Czestochowa to my knowledge, and again as you
go, it's a beautiful sight. I traveled, I was a youngster, kind of developed, I was kind of like an
owl, like an eagle. I looked at everything, I saw everything, I wanted to see everything. I was very
much familiar with Czestochowa.
PR It probably hasn't changed much since then.
LS It probably has changed because the life isn't as much now as it used to be
before. Because when you cook a meal, you can buy the best steaks, if you don't season it right, it
doesn't taste good (chuckle). Without a little Jewish flavor, I don't know. I don't know how many
countries they have in the world that they don't have Jews. Very few. But wherever they don't
have Jews you can see how the Third World status, they don't have Jews you can see how life is
PR The Jews were so much a part of Polish life.
LS It was. There was a seasoning of it. The ego. The will. I mean, it was good to
have, the contribution of it, to me, it looked like it was a lot. I could see it. Because there wasn't a
peasant that came from the surrounding area thirty-five, or forty kilometers from the area around
Czestochowa, that hasn't come to buy a product, groceries or any other materials has to come and
buy from a Jewish store.
PR Did the Jews in Czestochowa get along well with the Poles.
LS Yes. It wasn't very much, because in a city of that size, you always have a
group that didn't, that fought back. The city of Czestochowa they had a quite a good Jewish
youth, but when they were attacked from the radicals, only the radicals.
LS Yes. Endeks. They attacked the Jews, and they didn't let themselves. They
didn't let it happen, at a sporting event. They let themselves. When a Jewish team played a non-Jewish team, a radical team, they always came a fight broke out. So the Jews always won the
fight. Because they have tough guys, good boxers, good fighters, they always could, they beat up
PR Did you ever suffer an attack?
PR Can you tell me about it?
LS Well, we was going to a sport event, and we knew what it is, and it was even
not an event between Jews and non-Jews. It was just a national...
PR A soccer game.
LS A soccer game, and we were not allowed to enter. I was not allowed to enter,
even though I had a ticket. They told me to wait, wait, wait. I tried to push myself in, I tried to
demand. So I got hit. I got hit.
PR They were preventing you from entering because you were
LS Because I was Jewish. I wasn't alone, I was with other friends, three or four,
what could we do, you know?
PR The Polish and the Jewish citizens of Czestochowa, there was little mixing, or
there was a great deal of mixing between the two?
LS Not much. Not too much mixing.
LS Marriages, absolutely I would say one half of a percent. One half of a percent.
Not even a percent.
PR Was there a noticeable shift in relations between Poles and Jews once
LS Yes, it was. It was. Right after Pilsudski died, the government, the radicals
took over it. The first they had Senate they made a law that they forbid ritual slaughtering of
kosher. This was one. And there were many others.
PR How did you circumvent that law?
LS They fought. They had a couple of Jewish senators in Poland. They tabled it,
but in the meantime they tried to but you cannot exist. If you, even if they will not legalize, but
then will be black market slaughtering. You can slaughter even without the permission of the
government. If you will not do it in a slaughter house, you will do it in a private home. In the
backyard, you know.
PR What other official harassment was there?
LS Well, I noticed in 1938, on a Saturday morning, there was a junk yard owned
by a Jew, and one of a Jewish guy passed the junk yard, which he had a gate. So why he was
walking on the sidewalk he saw piece of junk came over from the inside to the out, on the
sidewalk. Pieces of junk. He was kind of strange to him. So he climbed up the gate, and he saw a
guy inside the junk yard, and he is stealing junk. So the Jewish guy said, Hey, what you doing
there? And on a Saturday the junkyard is closed. So the Gentile guy, the Polish guy, say, Hey, it's
none of your God damn business, you know. What do you mean? And this guy that passed by he
was a butcher, trade, and the butchers, they were tough. They ate a lot of meat. Hey, don't tell me
it's none of my business. It is my business. First, you're stealing, you're not supposed to steal.
(laugh) Stealing on Saturday, Saturday is a holiday, you're not supposed to steal on Saturday.
You can steal on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Anyway, it came to fistfight. They fought so
long that he killed him. The Jewish guy killed the one who was stealing. And two hours later, two
hours later. It was about ten o'clock in the morning, two hours later, they had all the radicals and
they went and they broke the windows in the Jewish stores, and they broke glasses, windows from
the private apartments, and they started like a pogrom. And the police didn't do a thing to stop it.
They just walked behind the mob. Well, what are you going to do? This was Saturday, and
Sunday and Monday, they were doing it for three days. So naturally, if they met a Jew in the
street, they'd beat him up. So we Jews were afraid to go out on the street. Regardless even in the
Jewish Quarter, we were afraid, because they came in. So Monday after the funeral, when they
buried that guy who was killed. They tried again to get into the poor section, to the very poor
section, where they had all the big strong guys. The poor section is where the strongest were.
They were fighters. They were rough. They were tough. When they entered this section, and the
police, horse police, you know, patrolled, followed them there, the mob, they didn't stop them.
There were hundreds of police, when they entered the poor section, those guys went out and took
whatever they could. Shovels, sticks, hammers, anything they could, and they went out and they
just run them off. In five minutes you didn't see nobody on the street, then's when it stopped. This
was in 1938.
PR What month?
LS I believe it was July or August. Was hot weather, I remember.
PR You stayed inside?
LS No, I went out on the street. I felt I was an eagle, I was an owl, I'm not afraid,
I'm not afraid, I'm not afraid. Because I always wanted. I went on the street, I didn't got beaten
up. I figured, if I'm on the street I might not be a Jewish guy, because they didn't expect many
Jewish people there. Anyway, I followed that for an hour. When I came home, my parents said,
Oh, where were you? We were scared. Where were you? What did you see? So I told them what I
saw. That's what I told you.
PR And your father, a politician, what did he have to say about this pogrom?
LS He can't say nothing. What can he say? When the government, when the
police, he can't protest a thousand times. They cannot protest as a private citizen. He protested at
the city council meeting, or original senate, or congress. Then he can protest. He was kept in line.
He was fighting. He was tough. For the rights of the Jews.
PR The scene that you describe reminds me of scenes in Nazi Germany at
LS It was exactly the same.
PR Did they burn the synagogue?
LS No, not then, not then.
PR Did you have any friends who were Poles?
LS Very much yes. Very many. Many, many friends. School friends, and even if it
was a neighbor, we were almost might last. We talked, we went to a dance, we played soccer
together. We associate very much. I never hated anybody. I didn't want to hate them. Because if I
hate them, they will hate me. I wanted them to like me. So that's why I have to like them, you
know. Friendly to them.
PR Do you remember that moment in the morning of September the first, 1939,
when the first German planes passed over?
LS Yes, I do, very much. My father being a politician, people tried to flee the
city. They figured big cities will be bombed, and his psychology was, We're not going out, I'm
going to stay home. If I want to die, I want to die in my house. I don't want to die in a strange
place. So we were on the street, and circle right from the beginning at first avenue, and a tank, a
Polish tank stopped. They couldn't operate it. So we just went and tried to help. Have you ever
tried to push a tank? (laugh) You push a car, if a car stops, you know. But a tank, it takes so
many people to push a tank. We gathered maybe twenty people tried to help to push the tank, we
could never start it. That was in the morning. Soldiers, I mean the army was already, the first day
when the war broke out, the Polish army was already falling apart. It was disorganized, and the
city of Czestochowa being about thirty kilometers away from the German border, we were the
first victims. Although it was a Friday, it took the Germans till Sunday morning to march in. I
don't know why it took them so long. Of course, but when they marched in Sunday morning, I
remember I was in the streets watching them marching in. And believe me when you see an army
the way the Germans marched, you going to be scared for the rest of your life. It was scary. You
looked at a German soldier against a Polish soldier, not that I knock the Polish soldier, I never
saw another soldier before except the Polish soldiers, but I figured we have an army, the Polish
government has an army, equipped with a horse and wagon. The artillery was horses, not tanks.
And little gun. Not machine gun. I never see a Polish soldier with a machine gun. Just regular
plain carbine. How they going to win a war against a motorized army of the German? You could
see the soldiers marching in. The smallest one, smallest one was six foot. Of course later on the
second, third one that came was a little shorter, but six foot tall, six foot and higher. Straight like
lion. Everyone marched in order. The songs they were singing they were so, they give you such an
enthusiasm. We are the one. And that was scary. Every time you saw a German soldier, you said,
Oops, I'm scared.
I'm just talking about how the Germans marched in. But in
1945, I saw the same, almost the same, German soldiers marching
in defeat, with their hands up. Like prisoners of war. The
Russians, under the Russians. They didn't look like no German
soldiers. They looked like any other fallen soldier. So even the
children, every child, like I mentioned before, when they marched
in, everybody was scared of them. Now this time, in 1945, on the
defeat, every Polish child in the street, five, six, seven years
old, went to the German soldier and spit in the face. Kicked him
in the leg. They could do anything they wanted, and they weren't
afraid of them anymore.
Was Czestochowa bombed from the air?
No. Czestochowa was not bombed. Occasionally they three a bomb
just to scare, on territories. I don't remember in the houses. In
the houses, the Germans bombed the Jewish section. When they
liquidated the ghetto. Because they were afraid of Jewish
partisans in the bunkers.
Did you first hear about the outbreak of the war on the radio?
No. Radio, not everybody had radio. Radio was a luxury. And
also who had the radio, the Polish government didn't want to
reveal right away that they were in that kind of shape, pressured
by the attack, so everyone was beautiful, don't give up, don't be
Actually, that's what it was. That's what it was. Later on we
found out that all the airports, not one airplane, Polish
airplane, took off from the air. They were sabotaged. Sabotaged
by the generals.
Influenced. The Germans worked very fine.
Sabotaged by Polish generals?
Sabotaged by Polish generals. The German spy ring worked very
good. They knew exactly what they want. They have some
Volksdeutsche, people living in the territory in Poland in little
places like small, five percent of maybe people from German
nationality. But they couldnt' do nothing outside. A little
contact with the officers. For a couple of drinks you can sell
anything to a Polish general. A glass of vodka will do it, and a few hundrd zylotys will be fine.
PR The Polish army and its officer corps was defeated very
quickly in 1939, and the government fled and as someone has
written, In five days time our entire life changed.
That's correct. This is correct. Because I seen many Polish
soldiers taking off their uniforms, hiding, burning, they have
little carbines, they didn't know what to do with it, they have
to break it in half to get rid of it. And like I say, five days,
the whole Polish government only held five days, and fled to
London. The Jewish ghetto in Warsaw lasted three weeks. The
fight, the uprising lasted three weeks, and they probably killed
more German soldiers than the Polish army.
PR When the Germans marched in to Czestochowa, they did not
immediately discriminate against the Jews, did they?
LS Not immediately. But they marched in on Sunday, now this is a
story I went through my life, I told you before, I was an owl.
PR A witness.
LS A witness. I was going to be a witness. I was in the street,
and all of a sudden, Germans from everywhere, German soldiers
came, with guns, and bayonets and they tell all men should
surrender on the circle, and they have many circles, four or five
circles. They gather us together, and they told us to lay down on
the ground face down. All the men, Jewish and Poles.
PR What day was this?
LS This was Monday.
PR September the 3rd.
LS Right. We called it Bloody Monday. Then they killed, in the
city of Czestochowa, they killed about six thousand men just for
not obeying the order. Now, while you were laying down, it was
about twelve-thirty or noon, and you have to lay down and the sun
was smoldering, hot. It was a hot summer. And you lay down on
this strip, on the ground, with your face down. Meal time is
over, you didn't go home for lunch. You're hungry. You get
thirsty. You're supposed to go to the toilet, you know. You can't
go nowhere, and if anybody raised their head to look around
what's going on, they put the bayonet in your body, and they
picked you up, with the bayonet, so you were dead.
PR These were German Wehrmacht soldiers?
LS German Wehrmacht soldiers. German Wehrmacht soldiers.
PR And then what happened?
LS So, around six-thirty, seven o'clock, it was still daylight,
they opened long tables, and they told us to get up, and to come
to the table, and to register. Give our names, and after we
register at the table, they told us to line up in five rows, and
they marched us in to the jails.
PR These were thousands of men.
LS Thousands of men. So in my section where I was the jail was
closest one. The other sections they put them in the army
installations, they were empty. The soldiers were gone. So they
put us in, they filled up, in a room like this, they put in at
least sixty-five people. You cannot sit down, you can hardly
standup. You squeeze one against the other. And we were there
since Monday night, till Thursday noon. Tuesday, Wednesday,
Thursday noon. Without a drink of water, without a crumb of food.
PR Without a toilet.
LS Without a toilet. So about noon time on Thursday when the
Germans opened the door, nobody dared move. They said they need
three men to go out and bring some water. Where ever I was, I
don't remember what part of the room I was in, in the corner, I
just flew over and I was right by the door. I was one of the
three men. I went out in the corridor. They give us a little
buckets to bring water to these rooms. I don't know why it was
like this. This is the nature of the person to be selfish. When I
first went to the faucet and tried to draw the water, I myself
drink half a bucket of the water at least, I was so thirsty. Then
filled up the rest of the bucket, and when I walked into the room
with this bucket of water, and two others, by the time I got to
the room, to the door, everybody jumped on the bucket of water.
They spilled all the water and nobody drank any. And the German
was standing there and laughing. So we have to go back again and
get some more water. We told to calm down. Calm down, you get
water. Everybody just dipped their hand and cupped a little
water. And that was it. About two hours later, they told us to
get out in the yard of the jail, and they lined us up and we were
supposed to be deported to Germany as prisoners of war.
PR But you were not a soldier.
LS I was not a soldier. Well, they didn't know who was a soldier.
The Germans didn't know. They could have been soldiers among us.
So what they say, we did. And on the way, from the jail, we
supposed to go again to the military installations, for the
Wehrmacht to take over, so I escaped on the road. On the route.
While marching, I escaped. I just walked out the line, and walked
on the sidewalk and walked away. I'm sure I wasn't the only one
who walked off. I figured, Why, I was only seventeen years old. I wasn't a soldier for sure. I was the one who escaped. I just
walked away. They had like every ten, five, marched in group of
five, lines of five, every ten people a German soldier, on this
side a German soldier, on that side with a carbine and bayonet. I
just didn't care what is going to happen. I just walked off.
PR You walked off?
LS I walked off. Running, it would make you kind of suspicous.
(laugh) If I would run, they would run after me and catch me. I
just walked off and I pretended like I was in the crowd. A crowd
of people were lined up. They knew already, because outside of the
prison all the families, my parents didn't know where I was at
that time. From Monday night till Thursday they didn't know where
I was. Because people outside could see through the jail window,
people are outside waiting, and we could make signs and say so
and so is here. People asked. So and so is here. But I couldn't
communicate to nobody. Nobody from my family would come down. My
son in prison, it's unbelievable. But then they thought maybe I'm
hiding with a friend. I'm afraid to go, because people were
hiding. Not everybody went out.
PR So once you escaped where did you go?
LS I went home to my house. Only a few blocks away. I knew the
city well. I knew exactly where to go.
PR And the next day, did you walk the streets again?
LS Of course. They wouldn't be looking for me.
PR What was going on?
LS Nothing. Back to normal. Little by little, day by day, we got
new orders from the German occupation government.
PR Did the Germans try to set the Poles against the Jews?
LS They didn't have to set it. They didn't have to set it. They
were already. See, the instinct in the Polish people, they knew
the propaganda that the Germans put out since 1933 till 1939 in
Germany. They knew that Hitler, with his book Mein Kampf, is
against the Jews. So, they figure, not being a Jew, they have no
fear. So they didn't have to set them against the Jews. They
said, Well, whatever happens. They could care less, you know.
They didn't care what's going to happen to the Jews. Everything
was made only against the Jew. Of course, there were some new
laws against general population, but in a different style. Like
when they told the Jews, there is a curfew, seven o'clock, you
got to be home. You cannot be on the street. If you are on the
street, you get caught, under penalty of death. You get shot. The
Poles didn't have to be home at seven o'clock. They go all day, all night, wherever they want to go. So they didn't have to set
the Polish people against the Jew. Then again, it wouldn't bother
us if they were set against us or not, because if so many Germans
are against us, a few more Poles against us, it makes little
difference. They might kill us a little faster, a little sooner.
But what we knew, in a way we knew that the end is coming. We
will be demolished. We knew it. Jewish people.
PR You knew it from when?
LS From the building of the concentration camps, like Dachau. And
Mathausen. And Buchenwald. They were built before Auschwitz. They
were built before the war broke out. They were concentration
camps, where they sent the German Jews and all the anti-Nazis. So
we knew something is going to happen. And of course you read the
paper, read a book, got a hold of anything, you could visualize.
But again what can you do? You cannot fight. How can you fight
against a German, you know?
PR What about your Polish friends, the boys you played with on
LS Well, we lost contact. They was afraid to be in contact with
me. If they get caught, they would be put in concentration camps
or in jail. Except one girl (laugh) who followed me all the day
till I got married. She found out I got married, was married.
Then she followed me.
PR When did you get married?
LS I got married in 1943.
PR In the ghetto?
LS In the ghetto.
PR What about your father?
LS My father got evacuated in 1942 when my father, my mother, my
three sisters got evacuated. Went to Treblinka.
PR There was a Judenrat established in Czestochowa.
LS There was, sure. Sure, of course.
PR Did they ask your father to be on it?
LS Yes. He refused. Good people refused. To be in Judenrat meant
to help the Germans.
PR To collaborate.
PR That was the feeling among the Jews?
LS Of course. What else? Again, what are you going to say? They
didn't do a good job? We know they didn't do a good job, but they
had no choice. They felt maybe, they going to help themselves.
Still egoistic thinking, so my father said, Whatever it's going
to be, it's going to be. Que sera sera.
PR When you describe the room full of people fighting one another
for the water, its strikes me that that is an image that applies
to Poland during the war. When there was very little, people
fought for what was left.
LS Yes. Yes. It's exactly the same way. That's what it is
everywhere. No matter if it's for water, or it's for power, or
it's for food, or it's for clothing, or it's for anything.
PR Furniture, a business.
PR Poland has suffered in history, and I wonder what you think
the impact of that suffering is on the people in Poland and their
morality, spirit, the way of thinking?
LS Well, the people in Poland don't think much. The church thinks
for them. The church is a speaker of the people. If the church
doesn't speak up, the people will say nothing. They're still in
contact with the church. Regardless it's legal or illegal. The
cardinal, whoever it is, who says, Let's wait, be patient. Five
more years, three more years, do it. Still have a hope when the
time will come. But today like 1918 they revolt against Russians,
but today against these Russians, they can't afford it. It's a
different Russia today than then. So. But yet again I know how
much they want their freedom, we can see. Lech Walensa, you know,
you heard about him. He's a freedom fighter. He takes a lot of
chances. But if they don't put him away, the Russians are afraid
they'll have more uprisings. So they keep him, like the pope now.
The Polish pope, this history alone it's a big slap in the face
for Russians, but again, they keep quiet. They don't speak much
of the Pope, the Russians. And the pope again knows, maybe he
should more presssure on the Russians. He probably would have a
free Poland. But they don't.
PR One survivor has said, "From every pulpit spewed the venom of
LS I would say so. Not from my, I've never been to a church in
Poland, and listened to any lecture or services, but every time
the people came out of the church, you could see they have a shout of anti-Semitism. A shout. A new shout. Even a little more
ingredients to anti-Semitism.
PR How could you tell?
LS Because they expressed themselves, and they always did. The
Jews killed Jesus, the Jews killed Jesus. So the Jews killed
Jesus how many years ago? Two thousand years ago. So what do you
want now? You're going back two thousand years ago. Can you bring
him back? Can we bring him back? So what is it to hate about
Jews, how many more, if Jews killed Jesus, which to my knowlede,
I would say I know that the Romans crucified Jesus on the cross.
The Jews didn't. Judah told them where he was hiding, that means
he killed him?
PR What about Easter?
LS There were rumors. Like the Jews killed Christian child to
take the blood from Matzo. The rabbis already declared it, this
was illegal for Jew to drink blood. If we buy a chicken, we have
to soak the chicken. When we buy meat, we have to soak the meat
in water. To get all the blood out. Jewish people don't eat like
liverworst, and we can't eat liverworst, cause blood is not a
ritual thing to eat. So, they already proved it. It's
unbelievable. It's impossible for Jews to kill a Christian child
to bake matzo. To put in matzo (laugh). It's ridiculous. It's
propaganda. And the people are naive, naive. If a leader comes
out and says, Well, they did this and this and this here. Who
told you that? Waclaw Chesov said that. Who is he? He's my
leader. So that's the way it is.
PR Did you actually hear talk of the Blood Libel?
LS I heard it. They made pogroms because of it. Before the war.
PR In Czestochowa?
LS No, not in Czestochowa. In the Russian territory, in Ukraine.
They said they found a Christian child was missing, and they say
that the Jews kidnapped a child, and they killed him. So, but
again, I say, Jews, I don't know, they don't kill. The guy killed
another guy who stole the iron in the junkyard, he killed him
because they had a fist fight, you know. But he wouldn't take his
blood and put in matzo. Or in soup. It's not a ritual thing.
PR The Blood Libel forum was what caused the pogrom after the war
LS Yes, that's right. Still you got radical groups. You still
have radical groups. They believe anything their leaders will
say, will come out with. They got followers. Everywhere. No
matter what sect, they will say. If a leader comes out and says something, Alright, this is happening. Of course, sure, sure.
It's an old saying. In Hebrew, That the people are I wouldn't say
stupid, but silly. Silly people. People go to a lecture. You can
have three or four thousand people at the lecture. If you have
three thousand people, two thousand five hundred people will
disagree with the lecturer. Five hundred will agree with him.
PR In Poland, it was more than five hundred.
LS Well, a reverse (laugh) example. A reverse example.
PR Last summer in Warsaw I interviewed many Poles who Yad Vashem
refers to as Righteous Gentiles. You know the term? I wonder,
during the war, did you have experience of being helped at one
point or another?
LS If I had to have one Righteous Person, I would have one
German. Maybe two. But one German positively. A German, and he
was a member of the Gestapo. He helped me. Thanks to him I am
alive. And my brother is alive. And thanks to him, nine other
people were alive. Because I asked him for the favor, and he gave
me the favor.
PR Would you tell me the story?
LS During the war, we have to do work. Labor, you know. To the
Judenrat, every day. The Jews in the ghetto got an order tog et a
ration, whatever the ration was, was little, no matter how little
it was, you have to go do the work.
PR Roads, bridges.
LS Everything. Anything. German installations, German army,
German hospitals, do the work, peel potatoes, clean, especially
winter time, snow, cleaning. And I had a friend, My friend's
brother. He was a member of the Judenrat, in labor department. I
asked my friend. He knew me. I used to come to his house, I say,
Morris, do me a favor, I'm tired of going to this dirty work
everyday, you clothes, shoes, you don't get special priviledges
because you work.
PR And they were beating you.
LS Very much. So I said, Can't you give me a little job, a decent
job somewhere? And I always got good jobs, through him. Like go
to the chief of Gestapo, work for the chief of the Gestapo in his
house, he has a garden, he needs five people to work in the
garden. It was nice, quiet, you know, then you get a paper, you
can go out of the ghetto, you know, and then you're secured,
because you can be caught everyday, to be shipped out, whereever,
if you had a paper from this saying you worked for him, you
saved. It helped me a little bit. I used a little protection. So one day he called me, and he said, Leo, I got a job for you. You
will like it. What is it? There is a factory, a porcelin factory,
a china factory.
PR What year?
LS In 1940. This man needs ten people to work at the factory.
They have a hundred and fifty people, but he is allowed to use
from the German administration, to use ten people, free labor. He
didn't have to pay. Just free labor. He said, Will you do me a
favor and be there. Just bring those ten people because you can't
give ten people, each one, a permission, a certificate that they
can go out. If you give that much, you got thirty thousand
people, you give everyone a permit, there will be thirty thousand
permits. This way, if I go, he gives me the permit, I lead them
out to work, and the work was right next, on the other side of
Jasna Gora, the Polish shrine. About a half of a mile on the
other side, right down the road. A factory. So, and I used to
bring them to work, and then I went home, and I used to pick them
up, I brought them at eight o'clock in the morning to work, at
three o'clock, or four o'clock I have to come up again. So this
was my job. Very good. I didn't have to work. I'm just doing so.
So I worked there for about a year, year and a half. When the
situation got tough, and the Germans started already to eliminate
the Jews, to ship them out, eliminate, you know, destroy. I told
him one day, to the guy, the German guy, he was the leader, not
the owner, he was the manager of the whole place, because he has
to produce all the coffee cups for the army. So, and I figured
out, to the German, well, he knew me then. Once and a while he
gave me a pack of cigarettes, once and a while he gave me a
little second hand china you. He couldn't sell it. Here take it.
Fine. So I asked him one day, I say, Mr. Mitski, first name I
don't know, I'm going to ask you a question. What is it Leo? It
is, What will you do if they will be a selection to ship out. You
will lose ten people. How can you help us? He looked at me. It
was a stupid question for me to ask him. He wouldn't tell me, as
a German he couldn't tell me the secret or what his idea is. And
he asked me again, What do you mean? I say, What I mean is, we
would like to have a little protection from you. If you can. He
says, Well, I don't know. I'll leave it up to you. He'll leave it
up to me. He leaves it up to me. That I can do what I want to do.
I said, So, how nice. Isn't that nice. Isn't that great. Gosh.
The man doesn't have no brains? The man tells me that I can do
what I want to do. You know what I want to do? I want to be
saved. So, anyway, the day came, and it was on a Yom Kipur day,
we didn't go to work Yom Kipur, he knows we not going to workk on
Yom Kipur, even during the war, even during the German
occupation, we didn't go to work Yom Kipur. That was a Monday,
1942. And we already have words that five thousand Ukrainian
LS We had the Jewish police on the edge of the ghetto, and they
saw that unloading trains, so we know something is going to
happen. So I took myself, and I walked down on Yom Kipur, around
eleven o'clock, I walked down, went down to the factory, and I
caught him, luckily, he was there. Usually he wouldn't be there,
you know. During the day. He came in the morning. I went into the
office, and I said, I have to talk to you. He said, Alright, come
in. He send his secretary out. He had two secretaries. One was a
Volksdeutsche, one was a Polish. Now, the Polish secretary, they
liked me, I don't know. Everybody like me over there. Even the
Volksdeutsche secretary liked me, because I did them many favors.
She was afraid to go home by herself, cause over you didn't have
no cars. So I walked her home, she was afraid of German soldier,
because German soldier don't know she is Volksdeutsche.
PR Probably she was also afraid of Poles.
LS Probably so. So anyway, so I told him, Mr. Mitski, or Herr
Mitski, in German, the time has come. Today, or tomorrow, is
supposed to be the day, and we don't know exactly what's going to
happen. This is it. I believe this is the last time I'm going to
see you. And what shall we do? He asked me, What do you suggest?
He asked me what I suggest. I suggest that I go home and bring
all the people who work, the Jewish people, bring them down here,
overnight, today. And so tomorrow we can start working. And we
not going home till everything is over. Because, when a selection
starts, a week or two, it takes three weeks sometimes, in a city
like Czestochowa, forty five thousand people, it's not so easy to
make a selection. Alot of Jews were hiding, so. He says, OK. If
you say so. He tells me, if I say so. So, I'm the boss. So, in
meantime he asks me what room do I want. Because they had rooms
with wood shavings, to wrap the china, for packing. Big room,
bigger than this. Many of them. I said, I don't know, with ten
people maybe we need two rooms. Alright. He told an attendant to
clear up two rooms for us, so I went on and brought on nine
people only. One didn't want to go. He said, No, I'm not going.
I'm going to stay with my parents. So, we went, we came down
there and we rested. Now, I climbed up on the chimney at night.
We saw, during the war, the lights are not supposed to be on.
Everything is dark. Because Poland was never attacked by the
British or American, but it was policy of having no lights. I
climbed up on top of the chimney. The sky is lit up. The Jewish
ghetto, the sky over the Jewish ghetto. All the lights. The
streets are normal like before the war. Lit up, and we from time
to time machine guns (imitates). You could hear. It was quiet at
night. So I came down and I told down there and told my fellows,
everybody was waiting there. Well, Leo, they asked, What did you
see? Well, what I see I don't think it's good. This is happened.
What we waited for. We knew it's going to come. The time will
PR Did you know that "resettlement in the East" meant death?
LS Absolutely. Because nobody ever came back from other cities.
They had other cities before us, you know. We never, nobody knew
where they went. We never hear from them. Nobody ever came back.
Occasionally, once, if somebody escaped, came back and told us,
Oh, they took them to Treblinka, they took them to whereever.
PR Did you know that gas chambers were involved?
LS No. Shooting, a grave, you know. So at five o'clock in the
morning, the door bell rings. By the gate. We figured, maybe the
neighbors, the Polish neighbors told the Gestapo that Jews are
hiding, because they could tell, they could know. Even people who
worked there knew that we were there. They could go home and say,
Well, I don't like the Jews. I'll tell them where they're hiding.
PR That sort of thing happened before.
LS It did. So who comes in, the owner. Mr. Mitski, the general
manager, he came in. He comes in. The porter opens the door for
him. He comes in. And he was driving a Mercedes Benz, with a
little swastika flag in the front. And he says, Where is Leo?
Where is Leo? So they called me up, the chief, chef, wants to
talk to you. So he came in and he put his arm around me and he
walked with me along the yard in the factory. Yes, Leo, you are
right. Yes, Leo, you are right. That's all he says. That I was
right when I told him what is going to happen. And he stood with
me, and he called me in the office, it was just me and him. And
he talked to me. What can we say now? What shall we do now? I
say, I tell you what we do. I kept telling, You go from
Czestochwa to Radom, Radom where the governor Frank used to be
there, territorial leader from the government, and go tell him
that you need those nine people, Jews here to work, a military
factory, you need us. He agreed to do it for me, but before he
went, he waited till seven o'clock, when they opened the doors to
the store, the grocery story across the street, and he called me
into the grocery store, and he came in to the grocery store, and
he told the guy, Give me, he asked me, How many loaves of bread
you need, for my people to eat? Well, a loaf of bread is a loaf
of bread, about ten pounds a loaf. So he gave me two loafs of
bread will be good. He says, Two loafs of bread. And then he
asked, How much butter you need? About two kilo of butter. Two
kilos of butter. You want cheese? You like cheese? I say, What
don't we like. (laugh) He say, Give me two cheeses. How many eggs
you need? He gave me ten dozen eggs. nine people, a dozen eggs.
It'll last a day or two. Give me ten dozen eggs. And that guy
across the street, he was a radical, Endek, anti-Semite, and he
tells me, in Polish, with the German with me, he says, You son of
a gun. You lucky son, Jew, you lucky a German is feeding you. You
lucky son of a gun. And I told him, You're lucky that I'm buying
from you. You know. If you wouldn't be here, I'd buy from somebody else. You do the business (laugh). What the hell. And
then he tells him, the German tells the guy, Deliver it. He
didn't let me take it. Carry it. So that was a kind of a nice
gesture from him. He felt sorry for us. And then the guy says,
the Pole to me, I have to bring the food to the Jews? I say, It's
an order. It's a German. You have no choice. I didn't give you
the order. I told him, Someday, maybe I'll give you an order,
too, like this. I told him that. Someday, maybe I'll give you an
order. Didn't mean it, but I figured I'll try to get even with
him, you know. So we was sitting there in this factory for two
months working. He went to Radom, he couldn't get a permit
because it wasn't big enough for the German government to give
him permission to have ten Jews. And he took it on his own, if
they would you know, catch him hiding out ten Jews, he probably
could be punished, demoted, whatever. There was also a manager.
He was the general manager, the manager who was a Volksdeutsche,
before the Ausling, before the evacuation, before this shipping
out, deportation of the Jews, hewas alright with us. He got along
with us fine. From time to time, he said, Oh, you Jews, but me
personally he respected very much. That guy respected me because
he knew I am in contact with the boss. The boss didn't like him.
He wasn't such a good manager, but anyway. He's there, he's not
going to change it. So he comes in the same Monday, after the
Chef went to Radom and he said, Leo, bring the group of Jews and
we got to report to the ghetto. I say, What for? He said, This is
an order. I called the police, the German police, and they told
me, If you have Jews hidden, you have to bring them. I said, Who
asked you to call the police? You have no right to call the
police. Did you ask the Chef? He said, You get the Jews, if not,
they will come and pick you up here. And I said, No, we're not
going. But the rest of them said, Leo, I tried to fight with him,
but everybody gives in. If they come, if the police come, we will
probably get shot before we even get to the ghetto. This way
we'll go to the ghetto. When we came to the ghetto, the ghetto
didn't let us in. He walked back home, that guy, and we stood
there maybe two hours, and I'm begging, the ghetto was locked by
soldiers, and I went to the soldier, and I said, in German, We
got to get in. Perfect German. Get away. Go over there. And we
stood across the street from the ghetto. So, I said, Alright. And
while we were standing there we were standing next to dead bodies
wrapped up in blankets. Again, what can we do? So meantime I see
a lieutenant from the police, on a bike, he rides by, so I jumped
over towards there, because I noticed him, because I know him
from Czestochowa, we know the police. I say, Herr Lieutenant
Werner, just like that. We have to report to the ghetto, they
don't let us in. He says, Schiser, you know what Schiser means?
Shit. Stay there. We have no time. We got forty-five thousand
Jews, what I'm going to bother with nine Jews? So, an half an
hour later, another lieutenant passed by. And I again, I said,
We're tired of standing here. The night is almost over. Somebody
might come and shoot us. We might not even get into the ghetto.
So I went over, I said, Obershitz, we have to report to the ghetto here, and nobody let us in. He say, How many are you. I
say, There are nine of us. He was riding a bike also. He says,
Follow me. So we followed him. He rides on the bike, and we went
after him like puppies. Follow him to the point where there was
general point. So we came there, we walked into the factory where
they had the big terminal, with trains, to be shipped out, very
convenient shipping department, and he told me, Get in. Get into
the crowd. If I would get into the crowd, I would be mixed up
with the other thirty-five thousand, forty thousand there, and
then I see the whole Judenrat, all the elders, and I can even
remember their names, Jewish police, everybody says, Hey, Leo,
come here. They were afraid if we stayed there, they are going to
shoot us. And they thought, they didn't know where we come from,
the Jews. They thought they caught us hiding somewhere. And if
were hiding, we get shot. So they told us to come in the crowd so
we wouldn't get shot. I told my boys, Stay here. We waited maybe
a half an hour. After maybe a half an hour, a general from inside
the building, an office, and when we walked in, we had a line of
about ten and ten, twenty SS men. Police, SS men, you could see
the swastikas and everything, SS on the lapels, and I see a
general, and he calls somebody, gives orders to somebody, so I
run in to the office, I figure, if that's a general, so I run
into the office, and I had this piece of paper, I had it from the
Judenrat, and I run in from the office, and I tell the general,
We are working in a factory of porcelin. It's a military factory,
we make cups for the army. We have to report to work, because
we've been working all night, we didn't say that we went there
just for speculation, so we worked all night and wehave togo
back, if not the porcelin we have to put in the oven, to be
heated, if we not go take out the porcelin, there's going to be a
loss. So he tells me, Come back later. I'm busy right now. Come
back later. In the office, the general. Come back later, I go
out, come back another half an hour. Another half an hour, I go
back again, and I tell the same story. Finally, the general took
a little time and he said, What do you want me to do? He's got
forty-five thousand Jews to deal with, what he going to do. How
many people are you? I say, Nine. He say, Go the hell out, go
back to work. I say, Go back to work, I say give me a little
note. Give me a permit, that I can go with. He says, Alright. He
takes my letter, and writes on my letter, Let those nine Jews
back to work. He didn't say where. So I read it, and I give it
back again, and I say, Would you put your seal on it please? I
asked him to put the seal. He looked at me. Son of a gun, you
know little smart aleck. He put a seal on it. And write it down,
Go back to the porcelin factory. He put down porcelin factory. So
we went back, and when I walked out, the general called me back
on the steps. Hey you, he didn't know my name. He said, Hold your
paper high, up in your hand, don't put your paper in your pocket.
If not, they're going to shoot you he said. So I held the paper
high and everybody, all the thousands of Jews, They're going
back, out. And the whole line of soldiers stand back. We going
out. We go back down to the factory. When we came back to the factory, this guy, the supervisor, the Volksdeutsche, and he saw
us coming in, he fainted. He was feeling so bad that they didn't
take us, or shoot us. And he says, I knew that you will not burn
in fire. To me. When we went there the day before, everybody took
a little extra clothes to wear just in case. When we came back,
all our clothes were taken, by the other people who worked in the
factory. Non-Jewish, and we were buddy-buddy, everything was
taken. They took the suits, they took the shoes, everything they
could. Everything was gone. I told the supervisor, I want, I give
you ten minutes to tell everybody to bring back the stuff. All
our clothes have to be back. If not, there's going to be a war
right here. We got it back, all of it. In five minutes, we got
PR Who were the two gentlemen you would describe as Righteous
LS This guy, the one from the factory, the manager, he was a
gentleman to me. When he came back, he called me into the office,
and he gave me a box of a hundred cigarettes, and he gave me five
hundred zlotys cash. Here, buy whatever you need. And he told the
porter from the factory to cook a meal for us everyday. Soups,
breakfasts, he had a bunch of rabbits, he was raising rabbits.
Kill rabbits. We had to eat rabbits, it was not kosher, hell, it
was better than nothing. So we were there almost two months. The
other guy is a German. After the evacuation, they left five
thousand people, and they have groups. This group of five hundred
people we went in to clear up all the ghettoes, the apartments
where the Jews used to live, to clear up. Everything, bring back
to a special store room, and went to Germany, shipped to Germany.
All the valuables, everything. So each group has twenty-five
people, and each group has a special German police, Schlutz™Polezi, and the guy who was head of my group, he picked me as
kind of a good guy. Clean guy. I was to be not his assistant, but
whatever he needed, he said, you tell the people to do this. So
one day I didn't come to work, so he asked the people, Where is
Leo? Where is Leo? They said, Leo, Leo is getting married today.
What? Leo is getting married today? So the next day, the day
after my wedding, I went to work. He looked me up, first thing in
the morning. He wants to see if I lied to him or not. We were in
the small ghetto, much poorer than before. And he say, Where were
you yesterday? And I told him, I got married yesterday. Well, he
liked that because I told him the truth. What? You got married? I
got to see your wife. Show me the girl you married. He went with
me. I have to find my wife in the area where she worked. This is
the woman I married. He got with us on the side, and he say, You
stupid, you so stupid. What you doing here? Run. Why don't you
run away. Run away, you will get killed. You will be next. I say,
Where can I run? There is no where to run. Where do you run? You
go to Russia? You can't run to Russia. You can't even go out of
the ghetto. If you get caught, you get killed.
PR What about the Polish forests?
LS Well, we didn't, I wouldn't go with my wife to the Polish
forest. My wife was not material for the Polish forests. You got
to be a little tough.
PR Did you fear the Poles?
LS Well, no. I could handle the Poles. My Polish vocabulary, see
alot of Jewish people couldn't speak Polish. And they were only
caught when they started talking Polish. You didn't have to be a
blond to be a Pole, you know. That was number one, but number two
was when you started speaking Polish, my Polish was perfect
Polish. So I could handle them. So he told me, Where can I go? He
said, I'll give you a place to go. I give you somewhere to go.
I'll make your papers, he says. You can go to Austria to a farm
where I got family. They need people to work. But I say, Let me
think about it. He asked me twice, What did you decide. I don't
know if he wants, I was afraid he wants to find out if I have
ideas to run away. But I figured, he was, because he helped two
other Jewish girls, and they're living now in Australia. We were
in the same group under him. He helped them, and they lived
through, so he was number two, if I would find him, to give him
PR But you did not take his suggestion.
LS No, I didn't.
LS Again, not that I was afraid, the security was very, eighty
percent better in the ghetto.
PR I've heard that so often. Why is that?
LS Because we figure like this: you take a balloon and you start
blowing, you fill up the balloon with air, more air you put in,
the balloon sooner or later it will bust, because it can't only
take so much. The German people, after three years, now we saw,
when they made a pact with Stalin, good, but when they start
fighting with Russia, this is it. The war will be coming to an
end soon. Of course, it came a little late, should come a year
sooner, or two years. But the war will have to come to an end.
And I will be the one, I have a feeling I will be the lucky one
who lives through the war. I have the feeling, I have the
instinct feeling, I have the promise, I deserve it. I'm not the
guy that I did wrong. Of course, alot of people didn't do wrong
but I have an instinct, I have a feeling that I will live through
the war to tell the story like to you or any others.
PR That was your conscious feeling at the time?
LS Right. Matter of fact, then I figured another thing. The
Germans, I figure, I put down, black and white on a piece of
paper, that Germany has a seventy million population. When the
seventy million population, they need half of the population to
work the country, thirty million, thirty-five million. The other
half they need to occupy the countries they occupied. If not, how
they going to function. They need soldiers. And the soldiers are
getting killed. How many more soldiers will he be able to
replace? Just so many. So then again, I figure, sooner or later
they will break the bone, then again, I figure like usually when
the Germans came to make a selection, selection means to pick out
people to work. So I figure, I'm in a chicken coop. You have a
chicken coop. You have thirty chickens in a coop. You want to
kill a chicken or two. You just open the door from the cage and
you reach in and grap the two chicken. Which chicken do you grap?
The one in the front. We knew there's going to be a selection. I
never stood in the front row, always in the back rows. So it
would take a little longer to reach me. It was another of my
PR Do you remember the most dangerous moment?
LS There is no most dangerous, all of them were dangerous. All of
them were dangerous. There was not a selection that was not
dangerous. So it's not the most dangerous. The most dangerous was
the one when we back, when this guy told us we have to go back to
the ghetto. That was the most dangerous. To myself, on that trip
going back, I told the guy, the eight other guys, we were nine
together. If you want to go, go, I'm not going. I'm going to run
away. So he couldn't stop me from running away, that guy, he had
no gun. He was an elderly man. I could beat him up if I want to.
I wouldn't do it.
PR This was the Volksdeutsche?
LS Volksdeutsche. Yes. And he was terrible, he was such a
parasite. For no reason, he was a country guy. He has no
education, he has no meaning, no nothing. No loyalty even to the
Germans. If you were loyal to Germans, you work for Chef, if Chef
has eight people, you know how much money he saves? Let him save,
what the hell. If the other guy can stand it, he doesn't give us
nothing. What is it to you? So it doesn't make sense to me. But
the most dangerous is that was it. So again, even the last day,
January 14, 1945, when the Russians occupied the city of
Czestochowa, and we were in the same city working in a munition
factory. So we thought the Germans, they tried to take everybody,
evacuate the whole factory. There were six thousand Jews in the
factory. Not only from the city of Czestochowa, from everywhere,
so the trains came in, the train, the box car came in. They want
to load the people, but we were hiding. They couldn't find us. I
already prepared a shelter in the factory, and we were about forty people in that shelter we hid. And so we waited and we
waited, but then about twelve o'clock, at midnight, we looked out
through the window, we got a little peep hole, we see no more
soldiers, no more watchmen. We say, Wow, look at that. It's
empty. We walked out on the street, and we see that all the
soldiers are going. That was the situation. The story of my life.
PR And then the Russians came in.
LS The Russians came in about five o'clock in the morning because
when the Russians came in, they don't come in like normal
Russians, they come in as drunks. Every soldier was drunk. Drunk.
Deadly drunk. Vodka, they more vodka than blood in their body.
That's how the Russians were fighting. And it was January, winter
PR I once read this quote by a NATO general who said, Drunk they
beat Napoleon, drunk they beat Hitler, and drunk they will beat
LS Right. They will. I agree.
PR What is an interesting contrast is that the Germans marching
in on the 3rd of September, 1939, and then in January 1945, and
in a completly different way, the Russians marching in.
LS But the way the Russians marching in, they look like beggars.
They didn't march in like soldiers. They have no uniforms. They
have no belts, buckles, shiny buckles. They have a little string
around them to hold up their pants. Boots, torn up boots. They
had nothing. Cold, freezing weather, but they were there.
PR And good fighters.
LS Good fighters, they were. They could beat a German army like
this they deserve the medals.
PR So you worked in a German munitions factory to the very end.
PR Your life is rather exceptional.
LS I got something else to tell you. I didn't work all those
years I was in concentration camp for two and a half years. I
PR In which camp? In Czestochowa?
LS In Czestochowa. There was a camp, a concentration camp. We
slept in the barracks.
PR Not the ghetto, but a concentration camp outside of
LS Inside the city.
PR You were a manager?
LS I was not a manager.
PR Did you go to the factory each day?
LS I was living in the factory. We lived in the factory. I went
in in the morning.
LS So I went in the morning for the counting. Each group again.
They have different groups, different departments from the
factory. So after the counting I went back to the barracks and I
lay down. When the Germans came in, "Hey, what are you doing
here?" I said, "I work night shift." So and my foreman looked a
little bit through the fingers. They respected me. I was
respectable people. Family I was. I had a lot of friends. But
again you couldn't eat the friendship. But I myself I got by with
it. I got by with it.
PR Friendship sometimes broke over a piece of bread.
LS Positively. Positively. That's the true. But again I was
respected by those people. Why should I work? I work in a
munition factory making bullets to kill our friends, you know. It
doesn't make any sense.
PR When you came back to the ghetto to remove all the valuable
items to be sent to Germany, what was the state of the ghetto?
Did you find people hiding in the bunkers?
LS If we find them, we didn't see it. Quite a few were hiding. We
found a lot of dead people. They were hiding, the water was cut
off, they didn't have no food. So they were just laying in bed,
PR What about the furniture?
LS The furniture we took out. On the circle, and we made a
solicitation. The Polish people bought it. The Polish people came
everyday. We brought out so much furniture a day, one hundred
tables, three hundred tables, a bed, chairs, and the Polish
people came and bought it a reasonable valuable, cheap.
PR That explains why I have read so often of Jews coming back
from the camps at the end of the war only to discover their
furniture in the house down the block.
LS Well, it must have been poor furniture. Of no valuable.
PR Because the good furniture?
LS Because the good furniture was first taken by the Germans, and
the second furniture was sold at good prices, and the cheap
furniture, a table like this could be sold for ten dollars. A
chair like this could be sold for two dollars.
PR I know we are talking about a different time in history that's difficult to relate to
sitting in your nice dining room here, but
the Poles who came to buy the furniture of the dead Jews, was
there a moral question.
LS Not at all. No. They had no feeling. They cold-blooded. They
have no feeling. They didn't care, didn't care less. They didn't
lose anything. They had no pride. No pride.
PR Is it that they had no pride, or is it that they simply had
LS I say no pride. If you have pride, you have feeling. I know
the German guy has hatred against Jews because he was a member of
the Gestapo, but he had feelings towards me, you know. He had
pride. He thought, Well, after all, I'm doing it, I don't know if
he did it for the nine people, or for me. Why would he do it for
me? I didn't work. Those people worked. I very seldom, I just
helped. After that, when we came there to stay the night, I
couldn't go home anymore. I have to stay there all day, even
without being paid. I figure he give me a little food. And I
PR This is the general manager?
LS This was the general manager.
PR He was Gestapo?
LS He was Gestapo man.
PR It is said that anti-Semitism in Poland, among the Poles,
decreased during the war because the Poles saw themselves side by
side with the Jews fighting the Germans.
LS Well, some of them, yes. Some of them. Some who did business,
they felt a little bit, until later on, see, like when I lost my
parents, my sisters, I cried, and I cried, and I cried. I still
cry today. I still dream today. Today, after fifty years. I never
knew where they went, I didn't know what happened. I know there
is no grave. If they are ashes. But they when they lost the Jews
they saw, they knew what's going to happen. Poles who lived close
to Treblinka, like in the movie Shoah. You saw the film?
Decreased, but very little. They don't care. They still don't
care today. That's why a lot of Jews don't live there no more.
They don't go back. I would go back in 1945-'46, I would go back
to Poland, but again, I figure what I go back for? Go through
the same sorry thing? I have no regret. I have no regret because
people, you have again, today, you have a new generation over
there. They probably think, Well, we don't know nothing about it
like I say. They say, Jews killed Jesus. I don't know nothing
about it. It's not my fault. Should I hate by people they say
Jews killed Jesus. I didn't tell them to kill him. So it should be forgotten. But again they still come
in the same. In the same
situation. The same standard. The same living. The same feelings.
Because for years, the radical Poles, they say, Jews go to
Palestine. Get out of Poland. But now, when Palestine exists, they
didn't even recognize Palestine. So, what kind of standard is
PR Did you, after the war, ever hear any Poles agree with what
the Germans had done to the Jews?
LS No, not in front of me.
PR After the war, did you meet your Polish friends again?
LS No, I didn't meet them. I didn't meet any friends. Because I
went far away from the city of Czestochowa. As far as possible. I
went to the occupied territory, the territory of Poland that they
got from Germany. To be away from where it took place. Away from
Czestochowa. So I wouldn't have the memories. It would blank out.
It would bleach out. I wanted to have new feelings. New life.
PR Where did you go?
LS I went to Boyton.
PR And then from there?
LS From there to Czechoslovakia.
PR Then did you cross the border into the American sector?
LS (laugh) I crossed the border from Poland to Czechoslovakia.
PR At Teschen?
PR Could you describe your wedding for me? Where it took place
and under what circumstances?
LS It took place in a private room. With a reverend, not even a
rabbi. There was no rabbi alive. But you have to have permission
from German occupation government. A permit. But in Czestochowa
we had a group of fifty or sixty people. We drank vodka, had
cake, we danced. And that was it.
PR A moment of happiness admist the horror.
LS It was a wedding to Hiam. You know what is Hiam, to life. We
didn't make the wedding to life. I just got married. When I die,
and I go to hell or to heaven, and they ask me what do you know
about life? At least I could tell them, I was married. Otherwise, we knew the day was counted.
My feelings of being alive then, I
didn't care much. If I will be alive or not. I didn't care. I did
the worst thing to do not to be alive. I did everything that is
against the rules that I could possibly be doing, I did it. I
didn't go to work from the ghetto. Many days I didn't go to work.
Before I wasn't satisfied. I can go to work. And everyday they
came and they knocked at the door to open, if they catch somebody
PR And they knocked on the door but they didn't come in?
LS Well, there was a little trick to it. You had so many people
in so many rooms. One room, two couples. Three rooms, six
couples. With a padlock outside. They put a padlock on the door.
Now to the Germans, how smart they are, if there is a padlock on
the door, nobody could be in it. But the window and go in and
out. So when they saw a padlock outside, they knocked but nobody
PR If I may say so, it seems to me that one of the reasons you
survived is because you were a very bold person.
LS What do you mean bold? What does bold mean in English?
PR It means willing to take chances.
LS Yes, I was very bold. I was willing to take chances.
PR I mean, going before that SS general and asking for a
LS I was a hero then. I was a hero among those thirty or forty
people who saw me. Those people, my brother was in that group
with me, and a cousin who lives in New York. And they witnessed
it. And that was I mean, I had blood.
PR How did learn to speak German so well and so quickly?
LS I'm easy in languages. I'm easy in languages. Something, a
gift. My father spoke also.
PR Another factor, if I may say, to explain how it was that you
were so lucky to have survived, is that you spoke Polish so well.
LS Yes, that's true.
PR Yiddish speaking Hasidic Jews didn't have a chance, did they?
LS No, absolutely not. Absolutely not. Because Polish was to them
was very seldom used. Grammar, there is so much to it. Life is a
fight. You got to fight for it. Especially in those situations.
PR So you crossed from the Czech territories to Germany itself?
PR And found yourself in a DP camp?
LS No. (laugh) That's a different story.
PR One thing that I have read is that Poles before the war blamed
their troubles on the Jews for many reasons, and then after the
war, when the Russians came, they blamed communism on the Jews.
Why is that?
LS Did you ever see people blaming themselves? I've never seen
it. People always blame someone else. So after the war there were
no Jews in Poland. Before the war they say the Jews are
communists. There may be five percent of the Jews who were
communist. So what?
PR Isn't it all too understandable that Jews would look for a
different form of government? Because in Poland the government
did not assist the Jews at all. Put it this way, if I was a young
Jew living in Poland before the war, and I did not know about the
crimes of Stalin, and I did not know that Stalin himself was a
vicious anti-Semite, I can see myself looking to the East and
thinking perhaps that salvation lay there.
LS Well, that's why a lot of people left Poland even after the
war. From the beginning, in 1945 there was a fight between the
socialist Poles and the radical Poles. They were fighting. I
don't know if you're familiar with that. They say the two groups
could have inside the same department but not officially. But
secretly they were fighting. The groups were always ready to
attack the others. But it so happened that socialism won. So the
Russians could see what's going to happen. The Russians would not
allow it. So regardless what kind of government will be in Poland
after the war, it wouldn't be suitable. That's why all the Jews
left. We left.
PR If they didn't leave in 1945, then surely they left in 1968.
LS Yes. Israel of course was another thing, like 1948, was
something, it was easy. We figure, this is what we're waiting
for, like the Messiah. People waiting for Messiah. This might be
it. This might be it. So, three million went to Israel. Getting
out of Germany, or Austria. But again the world will never be
satisfied with the Jews. They always blame the Jews. Like even
here in New Orleans, David Duke blamed the Jews. The Jews are too
many in control. What are you going to do? Let them blame? Does
he ever blame himself that he was KKK? He doesn't. He's not going
to blame himself. He did the right. The Jews are wrong. So.
PR What happened to the synagogue in Czestochowa?
LS One is still in existence. And the other one was burned down
by the Germans during the occupation.
PR Are there still Jews in Czestochowa?
LS They probably have a few, but I don't know if they have twenty
or thirty Jews.
PR Is your street left?
LS The first boulevard.
PR What was the address?
LS Aleja 8.
PR That was your home.
LS That was my home. I was raised there. A big apartment
building. About 250 tenants.
PR Did you return to your apartment in January 1945?
LS No. No.
PR You left.
LS I couldn't go in. I would probably...not that I'm soft, but
the feelings, you know.
PR Other people were living in it.
LS Probably so. I would go in it. I say, Hi. How you? What do you
want me to do? Give you something? It didn't belong to me. We was
renting it, you know.
PR When you left Czestochowa, and walked to the west, was all of
LS Yes. Villages yes, they were ravaged. There were very few>
mean very few returned. One third returned. I made the journey in
1945, I don't know if you have time...
PR I have plenty.
LS My cousin and I and another friend, in January, the war was
still going on, we tried to walk to Germany: Konigsburg. Sixty
miles from the city. We walked in snow, in January, high snows. I
walked because I had a good pair of shoes (laugh). You know how I
got the pair of shoes? When I walked out from the concentration camp, barely, I put on a uniform
that the Ukrainian used to wear,
a black uniform, shoes I couldn't find my size to wear, so when
we walked on the field, I saw a Russian tank, destroyed tank, and
I walked into the tank, into the tank, and I saw a Russian
soldier laying there in the tank. I took off one shoe and I tried
it on, and it fit, and I took the other one and got a pair of
shoes. That pair of shoes held me for a long time. So we walked
for about sixty-five kilometers. While we walked, on the field,
we passed a little woods, and we hear a machine gun. Why would
they shot on us? Figure maybe Russians shooting at us thinking we
were Germans, or the Germans shooting at us thinking we were
Russians. We weren't wearing a uniform, this uniform wasn't a
uniform just a black blouse with pants. So we laid down on the
ground, about ten minutes, and we waited, and the shooting
stopped. So we kept walking. By the time we reached the one city
before Konisgburg, we came in at night, the city was in flames,
the Russians were there. So we got stopped by the Russian
soldiers. What are you doing here? We say, Prisoners from the
camp, survivors. What are you doing here? I say, We're going
home. What did you say I was before? I was bold? So we spent one
night under arrest by the Russians. I say, Look, we got to go
home. We just came out from concentration camp. We traveling.
Finally, we got a good Russian, maybe a Jewish Russian, they
didn't want to admit they were Jewish. So he let us go. So I say,
Are we continuing. We're never going to reach Konigsburg. It's
about forty kilometers. We'll never reached Konigsburg. We went
home. Back to Czestochowa. Because it was so silly. Why are we
going there for? What are we looking for? We didn't know.
PR You just wanted to leave Czestochowa.
LS Just wanted to leave Czestochowa. Get away.
PR But you had to go back.
LS Got to. It was the only place where we know where to go.
PR How did the Poles feel about the arrival of the Red Army?
LS Well, they were glad to get rid of the Germans, but they
switched, from one sickness to another sickness. From one wound
to another wound. Until later they find out. They wasn't so
PR Where you there in June 1946 when the referendum took place?
LS No. I was in Munich already.
PR In Czestochowa, in April 1943, did you hear to the ghetto
revolt in Warsaw?
LS Sure. Sure.
PR What did you hear?
LS What did we hear, that there was an uprising. We had couriers.
We had underground too. In our ghetto in Czestochowa, we had an
underground. There were communications. They build a bunker under
the ground to get out of the ghetto. But somehow the Germans
caught it, and they demolished the whole bunker. And a lot of them
got killed. So, in fact, a cousin of mine was a leader of the
partisans in Czestochowa. We heard about it. That's when we got
concentrated in the camp. We were still in the small ghetto when
the uprising in Warsaw took place. But then they held us for
three days, they didn't let us go out to work. They were afraid.
If they let us out, somebody might smuggle out whatever we got.
For three days, then they decided they will concentrate us in the
PR Did you also hear about the revolt in Warsaw in August 1944?
LS We heard about it. But we didn't take active part in it.
Very little. It was non-Jewish group.
PR What about the AK? The Polish Home Army.
LS Well, they were strictly anti-Semitic. They killed Jewish
partisans. They were hunting for them to kill them, in the woods,
the AK. That was our enemy.
PR All of the AK, or just special units.
LS Who knows? Whenever they run into a group of partisans, they
just fought against each other.
PR There were Jewish partisans in the Czestochowa region?
LS Yes. Czestochowa was a lot of woods, you know. Big forests. It
was easy access to it, but not like in Ukraine. Thousands of
PR I've asked you a lot of questions...
LS Ask me some more, you got some more?
PR Are there some questions that I have not asked that you want
LS I don't make want to make myself a hero. There are no live
heroes. Only heroes are dead. You can only be a hero when you are
dead. But (laugh) I can talk to you for five years. I don't know
if I'll be finished.
PR Where were you when the pogrom took place in Kielce?
LS In Munich. It was nothing new to me. Sooner or later I figure,
somehow, somewhere, big deal. Pogrom in Poland. Big deal. Pogrom
in Russia, big deal. Do you know how many pogroms there was in
the first one?
PR Was there any part of Poland that was known to be less anti-Semitic? For
example, Krakow always had a reputation for being a
LS They got good people and bad people everywhere. Especially
around even Czestochowa, about twenty kilometers away, they had a
colony of Germans. Volksdeutsche. They used to be Polish
citizens, before the war, and we used to get in contact with
them. They were nice people. We spoke a little German with them,
and they were happy. They were very friendly.
PR More friendly than the Poles?
LS Yes. More friendly than the Poles.
PR I often hear that the Poles were worse than the Germans.
LS If you give them a free hand, they would be. They were kind of
cold blooded, they didn't care. They can kill a Jew easy. It was
a pleasure to them.
PR Is it wrong to generalize about all Poles?
LS I don't generalize. Whoever did it. The can't minimize the,
you can't do away with it.
PR I wonder what my chances would have been if I had jumped from
a train and sought help from a peasant's hut.
LS Slim. Very slim. I had a friend, in Czestochowa during the
war. Thirty-five kilometers from Czestochowa there was a city
named Chapisa. My parents were born there, and this friend of
mine was born there too. And he told me, Leo, Chapisa was already
in the circle out of the Polish territory because the Germans
marked it as German territory. They had more food, plenty of food
to eat. And he said, Leo, come let's go to Chapisa. I say, What
for? We'll meet friends there. It's a different life. There's no
PR During the war.
LS During the war. So I figured, if you want to go to Chapisa,
you can get a permit. You cannot get a permit. You got to go on
your own. Smuggle. Take your life at risk. If you get caught
outside the ghetto. So we walked. I decided I go will him. We
walked for the first ten miles. Twelve kilometers. We have night. We got to go in a house. We
knock on the door. We would like to
stay overnight. They were good people. They didn't know we are
Jews. We didn't tell them. So we paid them two dollars per
person. Two zlotys per person. So in the morning, five o'clock in
the morning, we have to get up and go early on the morning to
smuggle over the border, Polish-German border.
LS So we walked in the morning. You didn't know when the posts
switched, the German watchmen. But if we run into him, we run
into him. Take a chance. So luckily we didn't run into him. We
walk in the fields. You can't go on the road because the road is
traveled. On the field. Water, patches of water, your shoes are
wet. You walk, it's terrible. So finally we arrived thirty-five
kilometers to the city Chabish. We arrive the next morning. It
took us a whole day to walk. So we arrive in the morning. It's
eight o'clock in the morning. After two days I need a shave. We
decided to go to the barber shop.
PR What year was this?
LS 1940. So we decided we go to the barber. So while we're
walking in the street in this little town, there is a big German
fellow in uniform, police. It was a high officer. Standing in the
corner, and he sees two Jewish fellows. He called us, Come here.
Well, he called you, you got to go. He has a pistol, he'll shoot
PR Did he know you were Jewish by the sight of you?
LS Yes. He knew because there were no other people on the street.
So first he says, Ausweis. Documents. I didn't have any Ausweis
because I was in Czestochowa. My friend had a Ausweis. He showed
him the Ausweis. OK, go on the truck. The truck was about three
houses away standing there. Ausweis. I look in my pockets. I say,
I've forgotten Ausweis at home. I tell him in German. And I say,
If you don't mind, I'll go home. I'll come right back with my
Ausweis (laugh). What else can I say? When I say that, he just hit
me and my nose started bleeding. Go on the truck. So I get on the
truck. This was right by the police station. About ten minutes
later there were about twelve other people coming out. Jewish
people coming out. They took us on the truck, and the truck
started up and two other Germans, three Germans, the driver, and
the two. Where we going? Nobody knows. I told my friend, You know
what, I didn't come here to get caught and go where ever. I'm
jumping, and soon, I used to spend many summers over there for
vacation, when we get right when we passed the cemetery, I will
jump. As soon as you pass the cemetery, about a quarter of a
mile, the woods start. I'm going to jump. If you want to jump
with me, good. If not, I'm going. That's what happened. I jumped from the truck, and my friend
jumped after me, and we run into
PR Did the truck stop?
LS The truck didn't stop for a while. The other Jews knocked on
the cabin, to tell them. The two run away.
PR They were afraid for their own lives.
LS They were afraid. So when the truck start, I don't know if
they pulled back or what. But about five minutes later, we heard
some shots to the woods. So they didn't see us. We were five
minutes deep in the woods. We go out this way, and we go out the
other way. I say I'm going back home. So I went back home, and he
stayed over there. He was hiding in his parent's house. So this
is an adventure. Something that is unnecessary. Gosh, I could get
killed, or shipped away so early. Then what? Why? Why was it
necessary? You say, Bold. Yes, I was bold. I did something always
the impossible. Something I shouldn't do it. But it came out. God
was on my side.
PR So you left Poland still believing in God.
LS Well, I still believe in God. I believe, but I'm not an
Orthodox. I'm not a fanatic. But I say my prayers. I believe in
PR What political persuasion was your father?
LS He was a representative of labor. Of trade unions.
LS No. Trade unions. Tailors, shoemakers, all the trade unions.
Not the Bund. The Bund was...my father was a very learned man in
the Jewish religion. He was highly learned, and he was very few
people in Poland could read and write.
PR If the war had not broken out, would you have been able to go
to university in Poland?
LS Positively, yes.
PR Because you would have been able to get on the quota?
LS Yes, I would.
PR Because you were a bright young man.
LS Yes, yes.
PR And because your father was an important person.
PR Where would you have gone?
LS I would have gone to Krakow.
PR To Jagiellonian.
LS Probably so.
PR Were there Zionist organizations in Czestochowa?
LS Oh, yes. There was.
PR And were there farms where they were working?
LS In Czestochowa they had one farm. (laugh)
PR Did you have Zionist Youth friends?
LS Yes, I did.
PR But you were not?
LS Yes, I was.
PR Did some of these people make it out of Poland before the war?
PR What about the Polish boy scouts? Were you a member?
PR Was it possible for a Jew?
LS It was.
LS Hiding out in Czestochowa, you had to have two things. You
either had to have a lot of money, and guts. With a lot of money,
you can go and offer the Polish people the world you know. So
some of the Polish people they will accept the money, and they
will report to the police. They don't say, I hide the Jews for
money. They say, Jews came in, they look for a place to hide.
PR Do you know of a specific example of that?
LS Yes. My cousin told me that his cousin, from his father's
side, they were hiding and they had a lot of money and the people
who hide them took all the money, everything they possessed, and
then they called the Germans.
PR And said?
LS The Jews came in and are looking for a place to hide.
PR And when this person from Treblinka, what is his name?
LS Bomba. Abraham Bomba.
PR You knew him before the war?
PR He was your age?
LS About two years older.
PR And he was a barber in Czestochowa?
PR When he came back...
LS I saw in Czestochowa in camp. The same camp.
PR Did he tell you about Treblinka?
PR Not a word.
LS No. He was afraid. If he will tell, the word gets around that
he escaped from Treblinka, and if the Germans find out, you know
what is going to happen.
PR How did he explain his presence in Czestochowa in any event?
LS Once you come into the ghetto, you have to smuggle yourself
into the ghetto, small ghetto. So he did. Among four thousand,
five thousand, you can live. And if you go to the Judenrat, what
are they going to say? They probably going to put them on the
list. Look a Jew came. That would be a great displeasure for them
to do it. So when he came back, he came back to the small ghetto,
and then because this happened, and from the ghetto when they
concentrated us from the camp, and he went with us all together.
PR And did you not wonder where he had been?
LS Who cared? Nobody know. Everybody could go and come. Could go
to partisans, and come back, whatever. Nobody cared. Everybody is
living temporarily. Because we said, We have our sentence in our
pocket. All we got to do is take it out, and read it. Leo Scher,
you are to die today, and that's it. So. That's all. Nobody would
PR When did you find out that this man had been at Treblinka?
LS After the war.
PR He told you?
PR And when did you find out that he was in the movie Shoah?
LS When we saw it. We didn't know he was in the movie. I was with
him in New York, what was it? 1962. He used to have a barber shop
in New York. I visited him. He didn't know he was going to be in
a movie. Once they found out, you know.
PR Because there are only a handful of survivors from Treblinka.
LS And the guy he's cutting his hair in the movie, in Israel, is
the guy who went with me to the city of Chapish. That's my
friend, because he's not an important. (laugh)
PR What I remember about that gentleman in the barbershop is that
Lanzmann asked how they cut the hair at Treblinka and he asked,
Did you ever see anyone in Treblinka from Czestochowa? And the
barber said, Yes. And the question was, What did you do? And he
said, It was ridiculous for me to tell them, because there was
nothing I could tell them. It just served to remind me that to
survive you had to be a very smart individual and, in a sense,
you had to be ruthless. Is that correct?
LS Yes, I don't know if I could have done it. To cut the hair was
nothing, but to clean the ashes, that was...I was in Auschwitz in
1946. After the war. Walked around, and still the stench smelled
so bad, the stink, the human bodies. Flesh was burned. In 1946.
I also went to Dachau, and Bergen-Belsen.
PR Why did you visit those places?
LS Why shouldn't I know. How would I know what to say?
PR And the Polish people around Auschwitz, did they speak to you?
LS I didn't try to talk to them.
PR I spoke to a Polish man last summer in Warsaw who lived on a
farm near Treblinka, and he told me that his farm went to the
LS It's possible. You see, they couldn't establish with all those
things. I mean, the Germans had so much to do. Such much, such an
administration, can you imagine? It's impossible to do everything
perfect. It was impossible. They couldn't do exactly not to skip
or overlook one point, or one item. They skipped many items, not
do it right. It's human error.
PR To the Nazis, it seems like it was more important to kill the
Jews than to win the war.
LS Not really. Killing the Jews was easy. To win the war was
hard. Why did Hitler commit suicide? Such a hero, such a strong
man, why did he commit suicide? Cause he was a chicken. He could
yell and scream to all the generals. He screamed his head off. He
didn't know what he was saying. He was not that intelligent. He
was not such a learned man. He was acting. And he practiced his
acting. You think he went out and had a speech without
practicing? He probably stood in front of the mirror for days and
hours, to practice his speech. How to yell. How loud to yell.
PR Thank you very much.
LS You want a drink or something.
PR I'd love a drink.
LS What you like?
- END -