arrival in Atlit, Eretz
זה עובר כתשובה חרישית, כסוד לחש,
את שיחם של רוקמי מחשבה עדינה
המרבים כה לתהות מה יתרון ומה שחר,
מבחינת ערכי נצח, לכלי המדינה...
זה סותר כתשובה חרישית ונשכחת
את הסקפסיס הדק היודע-כמו
כי חומה ומגן מנדודים ומפחד
הם רק כלי אשר אין הוא תכלית לעצמו.
הם רק כלי אם הוגה-הדעות לא ימציא לו
את תשובת-ההסבר הסופית "לשם מה"...
הם רק כלי מסוכן שעתיד הוא אפילו
לדלדל ולרושש את נשמת האומה...
זה עובר כתשובה חרישית-ונשלחת
בשאלות הספק הצודקות בהחלט...
זה עובר כתשובה של לילות ערבות שלג
ושל דרך קרבות בלי עוזר ובאין עד...
זה עובר כמו קרב על פת לחם ודוחן,
זה עובר כמו זכר בדידות ואימה,
זה נותן, כאמור, בכלים מקצת תוכן
ומזכיר במקצת מה יתרון ולשם מה...
זה נשקף משנים רחוקות שנושנו
בדמות ילד נודד. ואומר המגיד:
מילדי טהרן הוא... חיל וסרן הוא...
לבדו הוא עורך מלחמה עולמית.
כך אומר המגיד... ופני ארץ נושבת
וחומה ומגן ופשוט קורת-גג
אז נראים כתכלית נעלה ונשגבת
וכעיקר אשר לא יאומן כי הושג.
(חמש עשרה שנה מעת הגיעם ארצה)
גם אחר שירבו הם שנים ויזקינו,
גם אחר שהזמן ישנה תארם
ויעטרם קרחות וזקנים שילבינו,
יקראו הם עדין ילדי טהרן...
את כינוי-הילדות יגררו עד שיבה הם
כצליל זר ומוזר. אך שמים עדים
כי אי אז, בתקופת ילדותם, שבעתים
היה זר עימהם הכינוי ילדים.
כי באיש הזקן לפעמים שוכן ילד.
אך ילדי טהרן – זה כינוי שצופן
זכר עת אכזרית ורודפה וחובלת
בה הילד נלחם על חייו כזקן.
מתרחקת העת ושוקעת שקוע,
אך פתאום מבקיעות מתוכה בענן
מלחמות הייאוש והעול והכוח
של ילדי התקופה של זקני טהרן...
כן, מלחמת זקני טהרן בני העשר,
ומלחמת זקני קזכסטן בני השש,
כל זקני הקרבות בין סיביר ופולסיה,
הזקנים הקטנים רדופי האש.
מתוך שם, מתוך צליל, מתוך זמר שכוח,
זה בוקע פתאום ומוסך בלא יודעים
אל תוך כלי הברזל והניר והרוח
של תחיית היהודים את דמעת הילדים.
אל תוך כלי הברזל והניר והרוח,
אל פלד אשר לצבא, אל הכתב,
זה נמסך כמו תוכן חשוב... זה שלוח
כמו ברק משמעות ממעבר לסף.
Written by: Henryk Grynberg
Translated from Polish and annotated by Zeev Schuss.
לזכר האבות, האמהות והילדים שעצמותיהם סימנו את תחנות הסבל בשטחים הלא אנושיים של אירופה המזרחית, סיביר ואסיה המרכזית.""
"To the memory of the fathers, the mothers and the children
whose bones marked the stations of suffering in the inhuman areas of
ולכבוד "ילדי טהרן" אשר נפלו במלחמות ישראל וקרבנם חקוק בליבנו לעד!
To honor the "
The List of "The
In my endless quest for
Holocaust literature, I have found and read Henryk Grynberg's book translated
from Polish to Hebrew: "Dzieci Syjonu", The Children of Zion, The
Path of Agony of the " Tehran Children", Yad Vashem, Jerusalem 1995. The book
was translated by Zeev Schuss who added excellent historical background to the
children testimonies. The book is based on 73 testimonies -
"Protocols" - taken and registered from the children immediately
after their arrival to the Promised Land... The protocols of the children
testimonies are in the archives of the Hoover Institution at Stanford
University, in the collection "Poland - Ministry of Information and
Documentation," Box 197, Folders 1-4, "Polish Information center -
Jerusalem, reports of Jewish Deportees."
They were the basis of Grynberg's book, which enfolds the historical events of
this less explored chapter of the Holocaust, through the eyes of the little
Jewish refugees from
In the end of Grynberg's
book was the original list of those who arrived on
Re-cheking the data was like inserting the information for the second time. Then Mr. Henryk Greenberg proofread the list and my sincere thanks to him for his kind cooperation with JewishGen and me. I thank also Yad Vashem who approved the project. My thanks also to Eva Floersheim, author of the moving web site about Holocaust children searching their identity, see: "Missing Identity", at JewishGen web site, who also proofread the list.
The escape of the children
Children" escaped from
In the beginning of 1940
the Soviet authorities through the NKWD, commenced mass expulsion of Polish
citizens to gulags in
A wave of hungry, sick and wearing torn rags flooded the towns of
At the same time, General
Wladyslaw Anders was freed from prison in
By the end of 1941,
Sikorski, the prime minister of the Polish Government-in-Exile, managed to
convince Stalin to send around 25,000 Polish soldiers of the Anders Armies to
In Pahlevi, refugee tent
camps were immediately erected. The Jewish children suffered from heat,
starvation, sicknesses and also the abuses by their fellow Poles. The situation
changed once the Jewish Agency learned about the refugees' camps and opened its
Eretz Israel Office in
In January 1943, the
evacuation of the tent-city began. The children moved to Afhaz and then to the
The second group of (around 110 children) arrived already via
The small Yishuv (the name
of the Jewish settlement in Eretz
..." yes, the war of the elders of
and the war of the elders of
all the elders of the battles between
the little elders, persecuted by fire..."
But 35 did not grow old... 35 of the children fell in battle during the wars of Israel, mainly the Independence War in 1948, scarifying their lives for the freedom of the new State of Israel. Those 35 young brave boys and girls were commemorated in the book by Meir Ohad, Yizkor in Memoriam to the "Tehran Children" Who Fell in the Ranks of the Israeli Defence Forces", the Public Commission to Commemorate the "Tehran Children", Tel Aviv 1977.
Details (in Hebrew) about each combatant, his biography, the date and place of his death and his burial place are in the Israeli Ministry of Defense web site: http://www.izkor.gov.il
1) Another source about the odyssey of one "Tehran Child" is: Dr. Dorit Bader Whiteman "Escape via Siberia Jewish Child's Odyssey of Survival", Holmes and Meier, 1999 (English).
2) Dr. Robert Rozett and Dr. Shmuel Spector, Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, Yad Vashem & Facts on Fine, Inc., Jerusalem 2000, page 434.
3) Stefan Wiśniowski comments:
“By the end of 1942, Anders managed to convince Stalin to
send around 41,000 Polish soldiers
and 74,000 accompanying civilians to
ואם חלית בקדחת
תרופה יתנו לך? – קדחת.
רק אם חומך מאד עולה,
יסכימו: - "כן אתה חולה".
- חולי משונה –
ברקיע שמש אש
ואתה בחושך מגשש.
ובבוא החורף, עת כפורים,
אתה לבוש בגדים-חורים.
"אכלת", מעילך זולל?
עכשיו יבב, צעק, קלל!...
אף על פי כן, איתן רוחנו,
שיום יבוא ומענינו
יוכחו: נפלה טעות
ופה, בטיגה, לא נמות.
האל שאת הים הבקיע
הוא יעזבנו? ללא יושיע?
הה, סיביר את ארורה!
את בבשרנו כמארה.
וביום ישמח הלב ביין,
הדמעה תשור מעין,
כי נזכרך הארורה!
נכתב בסיביר ב-1941 , ופורסם בספרה של גדית שמיר: "ילדי טהרן", ערך מאיר אהד, הועדה הציבורית להנצחת "ילדי טהרן", תל אביב 1989
בקרונות צרים מפלדה ולחים
אנשי הנ.ק.וו.ד. גסי רוח, קישחים,
הרעיבונו, היצמיאונו, גידפונו נורא
והיה לנו רע, כל כך רע.
וכשלבסוף, אחרי 18 לילות בלי שינה
עצרה הרכבת בטיגה השחורה,
נפל עלינו המורא.
בצריף ארוך אנו גרים.
אתמול היינו עוד זרים,
היום ביחד, ואין קיר
בין איש לאיש, כמו בדיר.
רואים הכל, לכל עדים.
במה ליבם הם סועדים,
מה מדברים הם בשינה,
כל כך קרובים, שהכינה
תוכל עבור מגוף אל גוף.
אף בכינים פה יש שיתוף.
לחמנו צר, אבל במים
אין מחסור פה בינתיים.
גופך רזה כה ותשוש,
אך די דמים בו – ליתוש.
להניסם נדליק אשים,
אז מטפלים בפשפשים.
With So Much to Live for...
By Alexander Zvielli
Edited by Stella Fruchter (Hadassah (
HADASSAH LAMPEL was a 19
years old when she fell in the Israel War of Independence. She had disobeyed an
officer's order and joined the first armored vehicle entering Latrun on the
A few days before her heroic death, she pleaded with armoured corps commander Chaim Laskov, "Why don't you let me go? I am a trained radio operator. Do you have something against women?"
Laskov said, of course, that he did not and explained that he was following a new directive against unnecessarily endangering the lives of women soldiers. He was angry with Lampel – she had disobeyed a direct order. But he couldn't help admiring her.
He and Colonel Mickey Marcus, the American volunteer who had just been promoted by David Ben Gurion to be in charge of operations at the Jerusalem front, listened to Lempel's rushed but calm reports from Latrun, indicating the Arab legion's artillery positions. They heard her say that her commander was mortally wounded in the heavy firing which penetrated their armoured car. The radio went dead and Laskov and Marcus frantically tried to renew contact with Lampel. It was too late.
THE LATRUN ridge was a bone in
They were so much alike, so young, so pretty, with long, braided hair falling on their shoulders. My Halinka and Halinka Lampel had so much to liver for, and yet were sacrificed in blood and fire. May their memory be cherished forever...
Hadassah Lampel was born in the pretty little
Polish town called Nowy Sacz, in the foothills of the
Halinka's father, Maurycy Lampel, a government official, was not an observant Jew, but used to take his yearly leave in September during the Jewish holidays. Halinka hardly knew Yiddish or Hebrew as Polish was spoken at home. Her family led a modest, pleasant existence.
THE FAMILY'S pastoral life was rudely
Polish zloty were no longer worth the paper they were printed on and there were long queues for bread and other essential commodities. There was overcrowding, uncertainty and fear – the usual war-time privations.
Things improved slightly when Halinka's
father found a better work, in the town of
The authorities could not provide all the
deportees with roof over head and food, as they were not prepared for such
massive influx of refugees. Thus, one morning the family was expelled to the
Their escape saved them from Nazi genocide, but exposed them to other life of hardship and wretchedness. There was little food and primitive living conditions. Vermin, diarrhea, cholera and spotted typhus took as heavy toll among the refugees.
Then came a unique opportunity.
Halinka's Father succeeded in placing her
among what became known later as the "Tehran Children" – Jewish orphans
who were allowed to leave the
"It was such a difficult decision," recalls Stella Fruchter, Halinka's sister who lives in Tel Aviv today. "We were such close-knit family. But we really had no choice. We loved Halinka and wanted the best for her." Halinka refused to leave her ill parents. Mother despaired and asked their neighbors to influence father to change his decision. Mother had the feeling she will never see her daughter again. We drunk together the hot water "Kipiatok" (their breakfast) and we said our farewell and departed for ever... Father went with her to the assembly place. "Halinka's last words to me were asking me to comfort Mother who got high fever by then. In my memory remains a silhouette of a slim 13 years old girl, with short cut hair, sack on her back and... barefoot. Her image fades, and now I see her only through my tears... She disappeared for ever in the lane", adds Stella Fruchter, Halinka's sister.
The prevailing circumstances justified such a step. Young children earned their miserable keep by hard work like carrying heavy pails of water. Dubious cotton-seed cakes called Makuch, were the hungry refugee families' main staple. The primitive Polish army field hospitals were full of dying refugees; mass funerals were held daily. The friendly local population had nothing to offer, they were just as poor and miserable themselves.
The train carrying the Jewish orphans left
There was hardly any food on board, drinking was scarce and the sanitary facilities miserable. But no one was able to eat anyway – the Caspian see was extremely rough.
Halinka was 13 years old when they
disembarked at the Iranian
THE CHILDREN travelled on a dangerous,
winding road across the
Finally the children reached a tent-city on
the outskirts of
The children sailed to
The Yishuv gave the orphans all the love it could muster. Here, at last, there was a land where they were sincerely and heartily welcome. Halinka was adopted by Kibbutz Givat Brener. It was a world full of strangers. Halinka found it difficult to find a common language with the 12 and 13-year-old companions – innocent girls and boys preoccupied with their own affairs.
But Halinka, a quiet and wistful girl found herself liking those innocent souls who had never learned the dread of homelessness, hunger and fatal diseases.
There were times Halinka's friends from among the "Tehran Children" kept bread and leftovers from the Kibbutz dining hall, hidden under their mattresses. "Just in case..." they said, when confronted by their friends, just in case...
HITLER was, however, already far away. The
Allies were pushing Rommel and the Italians out of
But the Jews in
Mother Rozalia and her sister Stella arrived
to Eretz Yisrael 4 months after Halinka's death on
By Sraya Shapiro
Published in "The
Contributed to this web site by Mrs. Stella Fruchter (Lampel).
PITY the teenagers who by the force of events changes countries of residence, transmutes cultures. He is liable to undergo a trauma affecting the rest of his life.
Benzion Tomer, novelist and poet,
speaks knowledgeably, for it happened to him. He came to
Tomer was born in the Polish town of
When World War II broke out, the family fled
Free they ostensibly were, but hungry.
"To assure my subsistence, my father put me into an orphans' home, claiming
he was my uncle. Thus I became one of the "Tehran Children" who were
allowed out of the
"I was assigned to the educational
institution of Hashomer Hatza'ir in Mishmar Haemek. I don't regret my years
there. But when they tried to depict the Soviet paradise to me, I balked.
Ya'acov Hazan, the grand old man of the Hashomer Hatza'ir, spared no effort to
convince me. But I knew the truth about
Tomer joined the Palmach detachment of the
Hagana and was sent to the Gush Etzion settlements on the eve of the War of Independence.
Gush Etzion fell and its defenders, as well as the inhabitants of the Jewish
Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem, were taken by
They spent 11 months in the camp. "It was as if the trauma of the Russian days had returned after a reverie of five years of leave."
THE TRAUMA of adaptation to the new freedom, the new country, continued to haunt him. Combining memories with imagination, Tomer wrote a play, Yaldei Hatzel; "Children in shadow" is about the dilemmas facing young people in their new environment. The play was successfully performed by Habima and Benzion Tomer won a name in Hebrew letters.
He read literature and philosophy at the
The novel was completed only recently and has
not yet appeared in print. Paradoxically, a Russian version of the novel will
appear before the Hebrew original goes to press. Zvezda in
"If we took our Zionist assignment
seriously," muses Tomer, "we should have launched a crash program of
Russian translations from Hebrew literature.. The
purpose would not be political but educational. The thousands of young people
arriving from the former
THE NAME of the game is "Cultural Absorption." Tomer has been into this since he followed Yigal Allon into the Ministry of Absorption and subsequently to the Ministry of education. Writers and intellectuals generally should do their bit in promoting their cultural and political credo, Tomer feels. "I have never been a party man – a writer is more easily identified with a general movement, not with an institutionalized political framework. But in 1977 I joined the Labor party in opposition, just to make my stand."
Tomer himself did a stint of duty as cultural
Tomer is definitely getting weary of public affairs/ He bends his efforts now mainly to translating poetry into Hebrew from the several languages he knows. The writer in him has finally taken over completely.
The arrival of the children in Atlit transit camp,
There has been an organization of
"the Tehran Children and their Instructors", number of amuta
(non-profit organization in