Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Martin Koby - April 20, 1999

The Haganah

The Haganah it was--yeah.

The Haganah too, but who'd know about the Haganah? It was not--nothing was--they didn't say anything.

No, it wasn't public.

No. And when they found young people, "Well join my kibbutz." They were--I don't know, there were dozens of different you know, Gordonians, Shomer Ha-tsa'ir, the Jabotinsky group. Excuse me. Well, they you know, we were, we were running around all over the city, looking for things you know, what's it all about, dealing in cigarettes. You know, you got to earn some money.

Black market.

Black market. Pinhaus and Yitzhak disappeared. And they joined up with one of those kibbutzim. That--nobody asked him--you asked him, who did--you're not--you asked the people that you know from the--your town, they don't know. You ask strangers, "Did you ever see Pinhaus Shamem?" "What are you talking about?" You know, you ask a stranger. If some stranger came up to you and said, "Do, do you know somebody over there in Oak Park, had I ever seen them?" You'd say, I don't know him. We finally found out they were in a kibbutz. So I went to visit him...


...to visit them.

I the...


In the kibbutz?


Oh, this was the kibbutz they went in.

I was there every day. There was already a kibbutz made...

It was...

...you know, it's...

...near Katowitz

Pardon? No--yeah, in Bytom.

In Bytom, okay.

It was not a kibbutz. They had an apartment building. And propaganda was full blast. You know, you got to orient them, "What are you going to do? What are you going to be? What are you going to do?"

And were they training them to be farmers?

No, no, no, no, no.

Oh, they weren't doing that, it was just...

This was only...



Okay, just brainwashing.


Oh, you think?

Well, let's call a spade a spade. They were educating them, let's put it--and Pinhaus says you know, he can't go anywhere because he's got you know, takes his shirt off and he's got uh, staph infections all over the place, ??? full of boils. The only thing I could think of is about the Haggadah. Pinhaus is living the Hag...Pesach Hagaddah--boils...


...when I saw him.


But it--then I said--I talked to somebody there and they said, "Oh, we're taking good care of him. It's expensive because he's got to get his penicillin."


Staph infections, they figured out. And they shipped--finally they shipped him out. I visited him several times. And that--Yitzhak, no, because I couldn't find him. So when I was there in 1973, we spent the night. We were hollering at each other and crying.

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