Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Emerich Grinbaum - October 3, 2000 & January 8, 2001

Lagerführer Busch


Yeah. Busch is a German name though.

Yeah. I know.

A small guy, he was a--I don't know his rank. I don't know his rank. And he came and he changed the whole environment. Most of the Kapos, whether he did or somebody else, most of the Kapos they were sent to another place, I don't know. We had different Kapos also, but they were milder, milder. Even those who stayed there, they were behaving more correctly.

Busch was just in charge of Allach.

Yes. Only, everything in Allach.

Not at Dachau. Okay.

That was, I don't know, thousand people. It was a small enough camp. And he changed the environment, you know. That was approximately end of November or beginning of December, which is the, the winter came and it was terrible, you know. We were not clothing and didn't have enough food. The food was deteriorating already. And--but people were dying, especially those who were going out to this Kommando, a lot of people died. Well we were good. We--you know, we were still working in the kitchen. And the Zählappells they were very short, usually the Zählappells lasted several hours. This guy, in ten minutes did the whole thing up there. He wasn't cruel, he didn't do anything, just counted, bye. It happened unheard thing during this Busch administration. I quote and unquote. We had, sometimes it was very cold, he did the Zählappell in the barracks--which was unheard--in the barracks. He counted, we stayed in the line in barracks, he counted us, he went to the next barrack.

Why do you suppose this...

I don't know, I don't know, you know. And everybody here, he was some kind of, you know--I'm looking, I'm going ahead, I'll tell you, the Jewish uh, service it was very, very later on they were very thankful to him. So that was Busch. That's his name. Simple guy. I don't know, he--so, and he changed the whole environment. We had a lot of uh, uh, he changed uh, they--he in...installed weekly disinfection because the, the lo...lice, lices, everybody, we had plenty of lice. The Germans were afraid because of the typh...uh, typhus. But before that was not taken seriously. This guy took seriously the whole thing. And every Sunday we had to take off everything you know, we were you know, and for half a day until they disinfected. So they still uh, lice remained, but not as, it, it, it was much better, because the lice we have all lice in, in uh, uh, lice and scratching and all that stuff. But it improved. So the whole situation end of November--beginning December changed for the better. I mean--he couldn't do much, but he was much huma, humane than, than I'm telling you, I have to be, be very, very honest uh, uh, to tell him. So, so...

Let me stop you for a second. W...w...during the recent campaign, the presidential campaign, when you hear the name Bush does that...

Always association. Always, Bush, Bush. Uh, that was a very, very nice guy, a very nice guy. We didn't see he beating up during the Zählappell. You didn't see any, any--he was very, very, hm, very correct, very correct. So that lasted until February and then I don't know what happened. They kicked us out from the kitchen. So then we went to work in certain other places, but we didn't go back to that uh, other uh, other uh, big uh, Kommandos.

Kommando. You're still in Allach though.

Everything is in Allach. And then they were coming every month or twice a month, they were uh, they were, some people they were uh, uh, uh, shifted uh, uh, to other camps. Uh, Kaufering and Mühldorf. But some people wanted to go because the food was so bad he...already here. Uh, the work, we didn't work too much because there was not much work. Beginning of February--March, everyday bombing, everyday bombing, you know uh, of the, of the whole thing. So, even--I, I remember, we were working in the rail, rail station uh, to do something, repairing uh, the rails and all that stuff. But as the, as the uh, alarm came, so we had to just to lie down. The SS escaped to the b...bunkers. They left us alone. We could escape, but nowhere to escape there.

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