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The Eichmann Trial - Eichmann in Budapest

Untitled 1

Adolf Eichmann in Budapest

Avraham Gordon Testimony

Eichmann Trial - Session 54

Jerusalem 26 May 1961

State Attorney Bach: Your Honours, our next witness is Avraham Gordon.

Eichmann on Trial in Jerusalem
Eichmann listens to testimony at his trial in 1961

Presiding Judge: Do you speak Hebrew?

Witness Gordon: Yes, I speak Hebrew.

[The witness is sworn.]

Presiding Judge: What is your full name?

Witness: Avraham Gordon.

Presiding Judge: Please reply to Mr. Bach's questions.

State Attorney Bach: Mr. Gordon, were you born in Hungary?

Witness Gordon: Yes.

Q. In Budapest?

A. Yes.

Q. In what year?

A. In 1927.

Q. Where were you in 1944?

A. I was in Budapest. I was at school in the sixth grade of the Gymnasium ( Secondary School) - this corresponds to the tenth grade in Israeli terms.

Q. Do you remember 19 March 1944?

A. It was a Sunday, the day on which the German army occupied Hungary and also entered Budapest.

Q. How did this affect your studies?

A. In the following two weeks our studies went on, and thereafter, a general closure of all the schools in Hungary was declared. We finished the school year and after that classes were stopped and also the air-raids began. This was the reason given for ceasing all teaching in Hungary that year.

Q. Did the studies of all pupils cease?

A. Of all.

Q. Not only of the Jewish pupils?

A. No - all of them.

Q. Were you living with your family?

German troops march through Budapest
German troops occupy the city of Budapest

A. Yes. I was staying in the district of Buda, Quarter No. 1.

Q. Who were the members of your family?

A. My father, my mother, my brother, my grandfather and grandmother.

Q. When were the Jews ordered to wear the yellow Shield of David?

A. As far as I remember, it was on 5 April. This is the date I recall.

Q. Do you remember receiving, on one of those days, a certain order from the German authorities?

A. That was about a week before Hitler's birthday, on 12 or 13 April. I think that this order came from the Jewish Council, with the approval, and by order, of the German security services.

Q. What was the order?

A. It was stated in the order that we were to report on the Schwabenberg in the morning for labour service.

Q. What was the Schwabenberg?

A. Before the War Schwabenberg served as a resort place, and it had many private villas. When I arrived, I found most of the headquarters of the German army there.

Q. You say there were private villas there?

A. There were private villas, and hotels.

Q. Were there also Germans in the occupying army?

A. Yes. There were many German soldiers.

Q. And did you report for labour service?

A. I reported, and I was referred to a Jewish engineer named Kolbach.

Q. Only you, or were there other Jews as well?

A. When I came to the Schwabenberg, I found between one hundred and one hundred and fifty other Jews.

Q. Were they all about your age, or were there also people of other ages?

A. Most of them were young people under the age of 18, but there were approximately 20-30 older persons, about the age of 50.

Q. Please tell the Court what happened after you reported to Mr. Kolbach?

A. They detailed us to various types of work. They were drilling two tunnels there, one in the direction of the Eden Hotel which was opposite the Majestic Hotel and the other leading to the Majestic Hotel. We did not know exactly the uses to which these tunnels were to be put. We thought they would serve as shelters and as arms depots.

Q. Arms depots and shelters for whom?

A. For the German army.

Q. You say that you reported to Kolbach. Was he in charge of this work?

Pre war photo of villas in the Schwabenberg
(pre-war) photos of villas at Schwabenberg

Q. How long were you engaged in this work?

A. I was engaged in this work for approximately one month.

Q. When was this, roughly? From when to when?

A. It was in 1944, from the middle of April to the middle of May 1944.

Q. And throughout this time, you worked at the same place?

A. They also sent us to so-called outside jobs. We worked both at the Eden Hotel and also at the sanatorium, and once or twice I was also sent to work in the building of the Hungarian Political Police. The building of the Hungarian Political Police was near the Majestic Hotel.

Read more here: http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/trials/eichmann-in-budapest.html

The Holocaust Education & Archive Research Team


Copyright Carmelo Lisciotto H.E.A.R.T 2011

Copyright Carmelo Lisciotto H.E.A.R.T 2010

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