Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Larry Brenner - December 13, 1981

Hungarian Political Situation

So anyway, life was like this 'til about, about 1938 when uh, war started uh, the wind of war came from Germany. Now you have to remember Hungary was a di... uh, after World War I was divided. Part of Hungary was given to Czechoslovakia, part of Hungary was given to Romania. That they called them that Trianon Treaty?

Treaty of Trianon.

Okay. Uh, they divided Hungary to about four or five different places. Uh, Hungary was uh, maybe twenty-one thousand square kilometer before the war, the First World War, and after First World War uh, it became uh, about eighty-eight, eight thousand eight hundred square kilometer. Part of it was given to Yugoslavia, part of it was given back to Austria, part to Romania uh, and part to...


...Czechoslovakia. Okay. Now we were living about, our town was about twenty kilometer from the Czechoslovak border.

Is this Transylvania?

No, from the Czecho... the Czecho... Transylvania was Romania.

Yeah. Was Romania.

The Czechoslovak border is something else. That's uh, that's uh... And in, when Hitler came to power, in order to get Hungary's political favor uh, he promised them that he will give back part of this lost territories. In 1938, I believe, now I'm not sure exactly the date, but I think in that area, the way they started that one there, the wind was blowing that Hungary's demanding the territories back from, from these uh, places. And they... I remember in our town, one morning we get up there before the holiday, before the--it must be '38--before the High Holidays. One morning a bunch of dif... people came in town. Different. They look like that they are, they are the slums, from, from all kind of, from jails. And we found out they were the Hungarian Free Army. What happened is this: that in order to make turmoil in these territories, they collected the slum of... they collected people from jails from all over, gave them freedom and they went into these places and they--illegally--with arms and they tried to make a revolution. They, they, they, they stole and, and they beat up people.

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