Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

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

Defying Authorities

So you went to jail?

No, almost. And that happened with my brother a year later or so. So. And all the Jews got, a couple of Jews got very poor assignment, very poor assignment. And some other politically not uh, very uh, you know, those who had--let's see-- not only, only Jews. Those whose father had some, some political problems or something, they had very bad assignment. But I had probably the worst assignment. And I told the commission, listen uh, maybe then you can, you count my, that I was a good student. "Yes, yes, of course, we need good doctors in that," there was kind of hy...hypocrisy, that was. Okay, fine. I saw that nothing to q...to, to, to quarrel because. So we had to sign immediately. Because I was told, if I don't sign to go there, they won't give me the diploma. So I had to, to sign and then we got diploma, we'll think about it later. That was you know, I consulted people who were smart uh, had experience, older you know, students. So I managed to find a job in a small city uh, in Transcarpathia uh, temporarily. Because the, the, the chief doctor uh, uh, I made acquaintance with the chief doctor and he was, he was a local Ukrainian uh, very respectable uh, doctor, older doctor. And he talked to me, he liked me. And he needed, he needed doctors there. He said, I don't care. He took me. That was illegal to take. But he was wrong. After a couple of months uh, they found out that I'm there. So of course I was not difficult. And he made them--they made them to let me go. But. So he let me go and then we wrote a letter to the authorities that I let him go. But five days later he took me back and he uh, justified to the authorities that the whole job is going because he needs doctors. He cannot perform the--because it was small, small hospital it was you know, and he took me back. So they were quiet for awhile. Again. It took you know, that--and then they put me uh, they sue me.

They sued you.

Yeah. That was--they sued me. But that was nothing serious. So they sued me and I had to go to court, to the local court you know, that in a small, small city, local court. But in small city everybody knows everybody, so. The judge--we--I know the judge, I have a, another Jewish friend, a, a stomat...a stomat...a dentist. And he was a good friend of the judge, you know. They, they were going out, drinking and all this stuff. So I met him. So, what. Oh, so, you no problem he says. So we give him some money. You know, that was open...

Of course.

...you know. That's a commu...not much you know, the money. Oh, that'll be fine. So they sued me and I, I got one year uh, forced labor. Listen, forced labor means that I stayed in job, in the job, but they deducted twenty-five percent of my salary for one year. So they sent back to the administration back, they--I've already been sued. And then, that, that was it.

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