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Josse L. Holocaust testimony (HVT-4050) interviewed by Michel Rosenfeldt and Yannis Thanassekos

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-4050

Videotape testimony of Josse L., who was born in Montevideo, Uruguay in 1915 to Belgian parents, giving him dual citizenship. He recounts living in Argentina, Brussels, and Rio de Janeiro; attending school in Vanves, France; vacationing with relatives in Ostende; his bar mitzvah there; completing school in Brussels; military service in 1936; opening a business with his brother; military recall; capture by Germans on May 28, 1940 (the Germans did not learn he was Jewish); learning his parents and sister had left for Brazil; release on June 11; reunion with his brother; reopening their business; anti-Jewish restrictions, including wearing the star; hiding Allied pilots; escaping with his brother to Marseille in July 1942, hoping to join Belgian forces in England; capture in Puigcerdá, Spain; incarceration in Miranda de Ebro; release due to his family's influence; meeting the Belgian ambassador in Madrid; traveling to Lisbon (his brother went to England); joining Belgian forces; he and his future wife organizing over forty escapes from France; returning to Brussels after the war; and reunion with his parents and siblings. Mr. L. discusses his career; lack of religious beliefs; identifying as an ethnic Jew and a Belgian; medals officially recognizing his war work; and cynicism regarding religion, politics, and humanity in general. He reads from his diaries.

Author/Creator
L., Josse, 1915-
Published
Brussels, Belgium : Fondation Auschwitz, 1995
Interview Date
October 30, 1995.
Language
French
Copies
2 copies: Betacam SP dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Josse L. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-4050). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.