Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Michael Opas - [n.d.]

Life in Auschwitz

Mm-hm. Mm-hm. Were you ever bothered in your barracks by German soldiers at the time when you were in Auschwitz? Did they ever come into your barrack?

No, no. No, there were, there were on...we were bothered by the Kapos. Older prisoners--the older prisoners like me, but they were already advanced. You know what Kapo is?


Well, this is, chose--a few people chosen among the prisoners who were supervising or, um. They were actually helpers to the Germans. They were out bothering us because they wanted to have an extra, extra uh, piece of bread or an extra uh, uh, uh, extra little favor from the Germans. So they were helping them actually and they were treating us like, like dirt.

Mm-hm. Did the Kapos ever help anyone ever?

No, they didn't help us. They helped themselves.

Okay. What were the sanitary conditions in Auschwi...in Birkenau?

Well, same thing. Only outhouses.

Mm-hm. Was there ever contact with the opposite sex?


Did you ever see any women while you were there?

Oh yeah, we saw. We, we passed by. There was a camp for, for women too.


We passed by the camp, we saw the women, but no, no contact.

© Board of Regents University of Michigan-Dearborn