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Henri D. Holocaust testimony (HVT-1829) interviewed by Raphael Rozner and Tamar Shushan

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-1829

Videotape testimony of Henri D., who was born in Ploiești, Romania, in 1910, the youngest of six children. He recounts his close relationship with his grandfather; his father's leadership role in the Jewish community; his grandfather's death in 1918; receiving his grandfather's teffilin at his bar mitzvah; attending a Romanian school; a beating from the principal because he was Jewish; leaving school, vowing never to return; being sent to live with an aunt in Paris; attending the Sorbonne; working as a journalist and novelist; the death of his fiancée; attending the Max Reinhardt-Seminar in Vienna in 1932; returning to Paris due to increasing antisemitism in Vienna; working as a filmmaker; identifying German enemy aliens for the Organisation civile et militaire (O.C.M.); German invasion; fleeing to Vannes; joining the Resistance through his O.C.M. contacts; infiltrating German headquarters posing as a non-Jewish interpreter and black marketeer; conveying names of collaborators and other information to the Resistance; arranging a liaison with a prostitute with venereal disease for a suspicious German officer, who returned to Germany after he became ill; receiving Allied airdropped arms in Sarthe; his arrest for black market activities; release; convincing German officers to release several Jewish prisoners; assisting with efforts to smuggle Jews to unoccupied France; arrest and interrogation by the Gestapo; the Resistance arranging his escape; being smuggled to Switzerland via Annecy; traveling to Geneva, Lausanne, and Bern; debriefing by Allen Dulles; learning of German intentions to assassinate him; brief imprisonment in Lausanne for his own safety; traveling to England; being sent to Qābis, Tunisia, then Morocco; arriving in Lyon after D-Day; serving in Grenoble; interrogating prisoners and locating collaborators in Paris; entering Buchenwald immediately after its liberation; smuggling arms to Israel; returning to France via Marseille; encountering antisemitism in the French military, leading to his decision to emigrate to Israel; and working in theater and film. Mr. D. notes a Jewish woman he had smuggled to Lyon locating him in the 1980s to thank him. His wife joins him at the end of the testimony.

Author/Creator
D., Henri, 1910-
Published
Ramat Aviv, Israel : Beth Hatefutsoth, Nahum Goldman Museum of the Jewish Diaspora, 1986 and 1987
Interview Date
December 12, December 15, December 24, 1986, and January 27, February 26, March 17, and March 26, 1987.
Language
French
Copies
4 copies: 3/4 in. master; Betacam SP restoration master; Betacam SP restoration submaster; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Henri D. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-1829). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.
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View in Yale University Library Catalog: http://hdl.handle.net/10079/bibid/4284576
Record last modified: 2014-02-20 10:11:00
This page: https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/hvt4284576