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A unit of Jewish recruits to the British army in Palestine stand in formation on their base in Sarafand.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 49173

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    A unit of Jewish recruits to the British army in Palestine stand in formation on their base in Sarafand.
    A unit of Jewish recruits to the British army in Palestine stand in formation on their base in Sarafand.

Among those pictured is Arthur Einhorn.

    Overview

    Caption
    A unit of Jewish recruits to the British army in Palestine stand in formation on their base in Sarafand.

    Among those pictured is Arthur Einhorn.
    Date
    1944
    Locale
    Sarafand, Palestine/Israel
    Variant Locale
    Tzirifin
    Israel
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Arnold Einhorn

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Arnold Einhorn

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Biography
    Arnold Einhorn (born Arthur Einhorn) is the son of Solomon and Hanna (Annie Silberstein) Einhorn. He was born in 1923 in Antwerp, Belgium, where his father had a kosher sausage factory and delicatessen and operated a kosher hotel on the seashore during the summer months. He was also a diamond broker. Arthur's mother, who was born in Kielce, had immigrated to Belgium with her family at the age of four. His father, who was born in Milowska, came to The Netherlands during World War I and later moved to Antwerp. Arthur had three sisters: Ema, Sabine and Eva (later Aviva) and a brother, Alex. After the German invasion of Belgium the family fled to France and stayed in a small farming village in Central France. Subsequently, they were interned in the Agde concentration camp. In November 1941 the family was released from the camp and assigned to live in supervised freedom as parolees in a small town outside of Montpellier. There, in November 1942, after the German occupation of the so-called "Zone Libre," Arthur was introduced to Otto Giniewski (code named Toto, later Etan Guinat) who was leader of the small underground Zionist group, Armée Juive, later known as OJC (Organization Juif de Combat). In a secret ritual held by candlelight, Arthur swore allegiance to the group and the Land of Israel by placing his hand on a firearm. The AJ-OCJ later shifted all its activities to Grenoble in the Italian zone where movements were less restricted. They used the small apartment of a Jewish widow, Jeanne Latchiver, as a center for the manufacture and distribution of false papers, and conducted operational planning and some military training on weekends at a mountain chalet in Les Michallons, near Saint Nizier. In Grenoble, Arthur managed to acquire a new identity of his own, Pierre Vinot. He had better papers than anyone else in the group since the prefecture himself issued them upon submission of a superbly faked military discharge certificate. The city hall of Bethune, Vinot's alleged birthplace, had been destroyed in bombing so it was impossible to disprove Einhorn's new identity. In the Jewish resistance, Arthur, under Toto's direction, participated in the manufacture and distribution of false papers. He sometimes obtained these clandestinely from city hall employees whom he helped to recruit. He occasionally guided Jews escaping from the German to the Italian zone and also explored the countryside and farms in search of potential hideouts and new centers for the underground. His sisters Erna and Sabine, as well as Sabine's future husband, Leon Roitman, were actively involved in the OJC's clandestine operations. In the summer of 1943 after Arthur's underground activities had been either betrayed or discovered, Giniewski ordered him to try to reach Toulouse in the German zone, then cross the border into Spain and eventually go to Palestine to join Palestinian forces of the British army. He also wanted Arthur to test the viability of a potential escape route to Spain and the reliability of a new, unknown passeur. Arthur left for Toulouse together with Georges Schneck, another member of the underground. Once in Toulouse they stayed with Regine Knout and Jacques Roitman, the brother of Leon, who prepared them for the second leg of the trip. Both Regine and Jacques were later arrested. Regine was killed and Jacques survived Buchenwald, where he was imprisoned as a non-Jewish Frenchman. In order to get into proper physical condition for the journey across the Pyrenees, Arthur and Georges trained in the gym of Alfred Nakache, the renown Jewish Olympic swimmer. After a few days, Georges decided not to pursue the assignment. Arthur returned to Grenoble and recruited a group of six other Jews, who were joined in Toulouse by a group of five non-Jews. Jacques and his chief, Pol (Polonski), arranged for the group to meet up with Bertrand, a paid passeur and smuggler by profession. Bertrand was angry when he saw the group traveling together with large rucksacks, conspicuously looking like people trying to make a border crossing. He complained that the group was inexperienced and that he had only been paid for fourteen hours of work. After a horrendous climb, an inebriated Bertrand pointed the group in the right direction and left them to their own devices and Arthur's leadership. They crossed the border 72 hours later ending up near the Spanish border of Alos, where they were picked up by the Spanish police and jailed. It took Arthur several weeks before he gained his freedom and was able to go to Barcelona, as instructed by the underground. In December 1943, after reaching Palestine on board the Nyassa, a Portuguese ship headed for Mozambique, Arthur volunteered for the British army. He served first with the Royal Army Medical Corps and later in Italy with the 178 Company of the Jewish Brigade. The British disbanded the Jewish Brigade in 1946 after discovering that members of the 178 Company were not only clandestinely funneling large numbers of survivors to Palestine, but also diverting military equipment and trucks to the Haganah. Arthur was shipped back to Egypt and then to Palestine. Later that year, he left for Paris to start medical school. All of Arnold's family survived. Erna and Sabine remained active members of the Jewish underground in Grenoble throughout the war. Arthur's parents and two younger siblings, Eva and Alex, escaped to Switzerland with the help of the underground, and after the war immigrated to Palestine.
    Record last modified:
    2004-05-13 00:00:00
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