The Full Wiki

More info on Kastner train

Kastner train: Map

Advertisements
  

Wikipedia article:

Map showing all locations mentioned on Wikipedia article:



The Kastner train was a trainload of almost 1,700 Jews who, in the second half of 1944, escaped from Nazi-controlled Hungarymarker to safety in Switzerland, while some 450,000 members of the Hungarian Jewish community were deported to the gas chambers at Auschwitzmarker.

The train was named after Rudolf Kastner, one of the leaders of the Hungarian Aid and Rescue Committee, who negotiated with senior SS officer Adolf Eichmann to allow a number of Jews to escape in exchange for money, gold, and diamonds. The train included passengers from all social classes and from all over Hungary. There were 40 rabbis, including Joel Teitelbaum, the Satmar rebbe; well-known Zionists; scholars; two opera singers; journalists; peasants; officers in the Hungarian army; and Slovak and Polish refugees. There were 972 female and 712 male passengers, including 252 children. The oldest passenger was 82; the youngest was born in one of the wagons on the fourth day of the journey.

Kastner became a spokesman for the Ministry of Trade and Industry in Israel after the war. He was assassinated there in March 1957, after an Israeli court ruled, during a libel case brought by the Israeli government on behalf of Kastner, that he had "sold his soul to the devil" by selecting some Jews to be saved, while failing to alert the rest of the community to its fate. The verdict was overturned by the Israeli supreme court in January 1958 in a vote of 4 to 1.

Rescue

On June 30, a train with an uncertain number of Jews left Budapestmarker. On July 9, it reached Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, where 1,684 arrivals were registered: in the early stages of the journey some passengers had left the train, while others joined it. Three suitcases of cash, jewels, gold, and shares of stock, amounting to about $1000 per person, were paid to SS officer Kurt Becher in ransom.

Despite Eichmann's promise that the train would go directly to a neutral country, the Jews were held in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in a special section for some months. 318 were taken to Switzerlandmarker in August and the remainder in December. There were a number of births and deaths, and about 17 were detained in Bergen-Belsen by the Germans on various pretexts. The total saved was about 1,670. Among those who escaped by this route was Rabbi Joel Teitelbaum, the rebbe of Satmar, and his whole court, leaders of Orthodox and Neolog communities, members of Zionist youth movements, Polish and Slovak refugees, and many others. Controversially, Kastner included a contingent of 388 people, including several family members and friends, from his home town of Cluj.

Kastner trial

The transport played a major role in the Kastner trial in Israelmarker in 1954, in which the government of Israel sued Malchiel Gruenwald, a hotelier, a political pamphleteer and stamp collector, for libel after he self-published a pamphlet charging Kastner, by then an Israeli government spokesman, with collaboration. A major detail of Gruenwald's allegations was that Kastner had agreed to the rescue in return for agreeing to keep silent on the fate of the mass of Hungarian Jews who were being transported to Auschwitzmarker. This accusation was accepted by the court, leading Judge Halevi to declare that Kastner had "sold his soul to the devil." In 1958, most of the ruling was overturned by the Supreme Court of Israelmarker, but not before Kastner had been assassinated. The issue remains the subject of heated debate.

See also



Notes

  1. Braham, Randolph (2004): Rescue Operations in Hungary: Myths and Realities, East European Quarterly 38(2): 173-203.
  2. Bauer, Yehuda (1994): Jews for Sale?, Yale University Press.
  3. Bilsky, Leora (2004): Transformative Justice : Israeli Identity on Trial (Law, Meaning, and Violence), University of Michigan Press.
  4. Porter, Anna. Kastner's Train. Douglas & MacIntyre, 2007, p. 233.
  5. Löb Ladislaus.Dealing with Satan. Jonathan Cape, 2008, pp. 115-18.
  6. Hilberg, Raul. The Destruction of the European Jews, Yale University Press, 2003, p. 903
  7. Porter, Anna. Kastner's Train. Douglas & MacIntyre, 2007, pp. 235-37.
  8. Löb, Ladislaus. Dealing with Satan. Jonathan Cape, 2008, p. 117.
  9. Bilsky, Leora. "Judging Evil in the Trial of Kastner", Law and History Review, Vol 19, No. 1, Spring 2001.
  10. "On Trial", Time magazine, July 11, 1955.
  11. "Exoneration of Dr. Kastner, Time, January 27, 1958.
  12. Löb, Ladislaus. Dealing with Satan. Jonathan Cape, 2008, p. 114.,
  13. Bauer, p198-199.
  14. Löb, Ladislaus. Dealing with Satan. Jonathan Cape, 2008, pp.198-200
  15. Braham, Randolph (2004): "Rescue Operations in Hungary: Myths and Realities," East European Quarterly 38(2): 48
  16. Bauer, Yehuda (1994): Jews for Sale?. Yale University Press, p. 197.
  17. Bilsky, p 47.
  18. Weitz, Yechiam (1996): The Holocaust on trial: The impact of the Kasztner and Eichmann trials on Israeli society, Israel Studies 1(2), 1-26; also Braham, Bauer, and Bilsky.


References

  • Bauer, Yehuda (1994): Jews for Sale?, Yale University Press, ISBN 0-300-05913-2.
  • Bilsky, Leora (2004): Transformative Justice : Israeli Identity on Trial (Law, Meaning, and Violence), University of Michigan Press, ISBN 0-472-03037-X
  • Braham, Randolph (2004): "Rescue Operations in Hungary: Myths and Realities," East European Quarterly 38(2): 173-203.
  • Hilberg, Raul. The Destruction of the European Jews, first published in 1961, this edition Yale University Press, 2003. ISBN 0-300-09557-0
  • Weitz, Yechiam (1996): "The Holocaust on trial: The impact of the Kasztner and Eichmann trials on Israeli society," Israel Studies 1(2), 1-26


External links




Embed code:
Advertisements






Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message