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Barbie Trial -- Day 12 -- A civil party testifies; the vice-president of the MRAP testifies

Film | Accession Number: 2005.516.1 | RG Number: RG-60.1619 | Film ID: 3982

17:38 Civil party Esther Majerowicz testifies regarding her arrival at Auschwitz, including having her head shaved and being tattooed; she gives specifics of her daily life in the camp, and details her subsequent transport to another camp, Kratzau, where she worked in an arms factory

17:52 President Cerdini asks Mrs. Majerowicz to give precision regarding the number of times and circumstances under which she saw Barbie in Lyon; he asks her how she knows that the man who arrested her was in fact Barbie

17:54 President Cerdini calls forward Charles Palant; Mr. Palant testifies on behalf of the MRAP (Mouvement contre le racisme et pour l'amitié entre les peuples), a civil party in the case against Barbie; Palant was a Resistant and was arrested by Barbie in 1943, along with his family; he was interrogated by Barbie and transported to Drancy and then Auschwitz III; he explains the etymology of the camp's other name, 'Buna-Monowitz': Monowitz was the name of the village nearby, and Buna the name of the factory in which they were forced to work; the witness comments on the presence of major German corporations in the existence of the forced labor camps; he says, "What has the war taught us? It has taught us that there are neither chosen peoples nor cursed peoples, and that many other peoples have been in different but not less tragic situations"; the witness comments on the French government's activity in Algeria

18:17 Prosecutor Gurion reads an excerpt from a newspaper article written by the witness concerning the role of German industry in the crimes against humanity of the Holocaust; he asks whether there is a parallel between the acts of genocide of the Nazis and those of the French Army in Algeria; the witness replies that there is no comparison to the Holocaust, but he asks for forgiveness from those who have felt violence at the hands of France

18:24 Vergès discusses the witness' comment regarding the part played in the Holocaust by 'German trusts,' and asks why the MRAP granted amnesty to perpetrators of crimes against humanity committed in Algeria; Vergès attacks the MRAP for its supposed failure to act in preventing racist attacks in Paris in the 1960s, organized by ex-Vichy leader Maurice Papon; the courtroom boos Vergès' diatribe; President Cerdini quiets the room and rules that the discussion has moved away from Barbie and the trial itself

18:34 A clerk reads the deposition of Mr. Jean Gay, a regional commander of the Resistance who was arrested by German authorities in May 1944; the circumstances of his arrest, interrogations by Barbie, and three months spent in Montluc

18:40 End of tape

Event:  1987 May 26
Lyon, France
Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Institut National de L'Audiovisuel
Record last modified: 2020-08-04 09:20:14
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