Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Hannah Fisk - January 24, 1983

Relationship with the Poles

Did the--any of the Polish neighbors that you had ever try and help you at all?

They were not Polish anymore. They say they Volksdeutsche. They half Deutsch. They were not Polacks anymore. We were living in, in Königshütte like I told you when I came for the wedding? And upstairs was a Polack and he says to our neighbor, to, to uh, Miriam's grandfather, grandfather was living downstairs. "We love you. You're our Jews. No, don't worry, whatever happen, you gonna be right here." Honey, no more Hitler walked in in the morning, he came over and he says, "No Polish," he spoke German. He says, "Leave everything and go before Hitler comes in here." Yeah. "Don't take nothing, not a stick of clothes, nothing. Just go." That's hateful you call it, hateful to the Jewish people. So how can we have a heart to them? Like I told you before. If only before them, honey, all right, they would kill maybe two million, million, but never six million, never. 'Cause a Polish person could smell a Jew a hundred miles away. And he would say to him, "Oh here's a Jew. That's a Jew." Would I have a heart to go back? No, my niece says to me, "Auntie, maybe you want to go with me to Poland." I says, "Miriam, I couldn't step in that land. I couldn't step on that ground where it's full of blood. That is Jewish blood wherever you go." Name me one concentration camp except Poland. Treblinka, Majdanek, Buchenwald, Auschwitz. You know why? They wanted to get rid of the Jews. You know what's happened in America, when they say they going to persecute the Jews. They put on uh, uh, a Star of David and he says, "Take us. Take us all. We don't have no Jews. We are all. Take us." You see? That is human beings yet in the world but they are not human being. Mind you after coming back, a guy like this, like my husband, he was weighing seventy pounds from the Russian. A year, I had to bend each his leg, he couldn't walk. And the caretaker says to him, "Everybody's dead and you're still alive?" Can you believe this? And this is so-called our friends. That's why if I hear that something go wrong in Poland, they have no food or something, I don't feel pity for them. Who helped us? Did anybody came and say that sisters and brothers are burning dead, let's help them, let's go and do something for them. Anybody? Why should I feel sorry for them? If we are miserable, and if we are not nice, or if we are not generous, this is not our fault, honey.

Husband: Did you read the book, uh...

[interruption in interview]

...I wanted to be in there--not a nice thing. She had to go there and listen to them, you know, from this. What else, honey?

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn