Scrapbookpages Blog

August 15, 2015

The life and death of Samuel Pisar, a Holocaust survivor

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 9:50 am

This quote is from a recent news article: “Samuel Pisar, who survived Auschwitz as a boy to become a successful lawyer, an adviser to presidents and the creator of the text for Leonard Bernstein’s symphony “Kaddish,” died on Monday in Manhattan. He was 86.”

Samuel Pisar

Samuel Pisar (Click to enlarge)

When I read in the news today that Samuel Pisar had died recently, that name instantly rang a bell.  I knew that I had written about him on my website many years ago.  I looked up his name, and sure enough, I found what I had written  about his survival, as a teenager in the Auschwitz death camp, and his march out of Dachau, just before the camp was liberated by American soldiers.

Prisoners marching out of Dachau

Prisoners marching out of Dachau just before the camp was liberated

This quote is from the news story about Samuel Pisar’s death:

In a series of interviews with The New York Times in 2009, he [Samuel Pisar] described how he had survived the death camps by becoming pitiless and cruel, finding older protectors and ways to appear privileged in a hierarchy of despair, like persuading a prisoner-tailor to refashion a cap so that the stripes on the top perfectly met the stripes on the side. He was condemned to die at least twice, but managed to slip back into the general prison population, once convincing a guard that he was there only to wash the floor.

“I had to learn bad habits,” he said, “to be good at lying and make instant judgments about people, what they were saying, what they really thought, and not just the guards and torturers, but my fellow prisoners, too. I was a cute kid, and there were a lot of psychotics around.”

At the end of the war, he escaped during a death march [out of Dachau].

But to rejoin the world, “I had to wipe out the first 17 years of my life,” he said. “I muted the past” and “turned to the future with a vengeance.”

This is what I wrote about Samuel Pisar on my website years ago:

Acting upon Hitler’s orders, the Commandant of Dachau, Wilhelm Eduard Weiter, made an attempt to evacuate the Dachau main camp before the American liberators arrived. On April 26th, 1945, Weiter left the camp with a transport of prisoners bound for Schloss Itter, a subcamp of Dachu in Austria. On that same day, 1,759 Jewish prisoners were put on a train that was headed south.

Also on April 26th, there were 6,887 other prisoners, half of whom were Jews, that started on a march south to the mountains.

[These prisoners were being marched out of Dachau because the Nazis were afraid that they would roam the countryside, killing German civilians, if they were released from Dachau by the American liberators. A few did escape and that is exactly what happened.]

One of the prisoners who survived the march out of Dachau was Samuel Pisar, a Polish Jew who emigrated to America after the war, became an international lawyer and wrote a book entitled Of Blood and Hope.

Pisar was 13 years old when the Bialystock ghetto in northeastern Poland was liquidated. He was sent to the extermination camp at Majdanek, but his mother and younger sister were sent to Auschwitz. His father had already been shot by the Gestapo.

A few months later, Pisar was transferred to Auschwitz where he was given a job working near the crematoria at Birkenau. He could hear the cries of the innocents as they were herded into the gas chambers while an orchestra played classical music.

When Auschwitz was evacuated in January 1945, Pisar was one of the prisoners on the death march out of the camp; he ended up in Dachau where his misery continued. When American planes strafed the column of Jews marching out of Dachau, he managed to escape and was eventually rescued by American soldiers. He had just turned 16 and had survived three long years of Nazi persecution.

End of quote from my website

Samuel Pisar’s whole story is one of Holocaust denial. As everyone knows, the Jews went through a selection process in the death camps, and everyone under the age of 16 was gassed.

Pisar was sent to Majdanek, which was a death camp, at the age of 13, but he wasn’t gassed. From Majdanek, he was transferred to Auschwitz-Birkenau, another death camp. When the Nazis marched out of Birkenau, he joined them instead of waiting to be liberated by the Soviets. For some reason, he had no fear of following the Nazis to Dachau where there was another gas chamber waiting for him.

Then he was sent on a death march out of Dachau, but he wasn’t killed. His whole story is one of Holocaust denial. The purpose of a “death march” was to kill the prisoners. The first time that I was called a Holocaust denier was when I wrote that the purpose of a “death march” was NOT to kill the prisoners, but to prevent them from roaming the countryside and attacking German civilians.


  1. At selection the Nazis made roughly distinction between under age 14 and over 14 years; who looked elder – over 14 – could escape Gas Chamber.
    The death marches had been a very good killing tool. Let march starving people for more than 12 or 14 hours a day and a great death toll is reached. Indeed, who could not march any more had been shot.
    Here we have some one who clearly explained the real conditions of those times of darkness and no one who did not stay in those conditions, should dare to exppress judgements.
    Certainly not some one who stood safe in the USA.

    Comment by Wolf MURMELSTEIN — August 15, 2015 @ 10:28 am

    • Why were the prisoners given the choice to stay behind, or to join the march out of the camp?

      Some of the prisoners were marched out of Dachau to prevent them from killing German civilians after the camp was liberated.

      Some of the important prisoners at Dachau were marched out of the camp, and taken to the mountains in Austria, for their own safety. A man who was writing a book about the march of the important prisoners was the person who got me interested in doing a blog. He was blogging about the march of the prisoners and was e-mailing me for information.

      Comment by furtherglory — August 15, 2015 @ 10:42 am

      • There had been no choice for prisioniers. One remained behind only because the Nazis did not manage it in time to arrange the transport or march for all of them
        As to the important political prisioniers: they had been taken to the Austrian mountains to be hold as hostage for an exchange with the Allied States. They tried to make the same with about 300 important inmates of Theresienstadt but that had been blocked by Governor SS General Karl Hermann Frank who tried to make a deal for his own; made certain in People Court.

        Comment by Wolf MURMELSTEIN — August 15, 2015 @ 12:39 pm

    • Wolf,

      Here is what fg wrote in this post: He could hear the cries of the innocents as they were herded into the gas chambers while an orchestra played classical music…
      When Auschwitz was evacuated in January 1945, Pisar was one of the prisoners on the death march out of the camp;…

      Can we assume this is the story Pisar himself told?

      And here is fg’s question from the comment above: Why were the prisoners given the choice to stay behind, or to join the march out of the camp?

      Was Pisar given this choice at Auschwitz? Let’s assume that he was, and that he chose to go with the Germans. Now consider again this part of Pisar’s story (per fg — but we assume Pisar said this at some time):

      He could hear the cries of the innocents as they were herded into the gas chambers…

      My question to you is this: Why would someone who knew the Germans were mass-gassing Jews to death agree to go along with these Germans to another German camp?

      To many people that does not make sense.

      Comment by eah — August 15, 2015 @ 12:01 pm

      • Remaining behind he strongly risked to be killed before the arrival of the Red Army while marching he – it seems strange – had more chances to make it to survive,

        Comment by Wolf MURMELSTEIN — August 15, 2015 @ 12:32 pm

      • Survivors of Holocaust, Vietnam, Iraq, etc. recall traumatic experiences and details hardly suit the criteria of pathologic fault finders lacking of any respect of human feelings. We have to listen what a survivor is able to recall whithout questioning about details in fault finding way. I, as a survivor, prefer to blame the politicians, writers, philophers, etc. whose idiocy enjoied free speech and led to those tragedies. .

        Comment by Wolf MURMELSTEIN — August 18, 2015 @ 12:08 am

        • Pisar is a holocaust false witness who seems to have become insanely jealous of Elie Wiesel and his holo-profiteering over the years. Thus, late in life, he wrote his “autobiography” to attract some of that holo-generated attention to himself. By this time he was a millionaire and, as he liked to boast, wore fancy clothes made by the most expensive London tailors, and an internationally-known shyster lawyer. But he still wanted to share in that sick type of “glory” that appeals to certain Jewish veterans of the German camp system.
          In US culture today, there are very many millionaires who eventually get tired of being known as wealthy men by only the fellow millionaires at the their country club. They seek public adulation! They want to read their names in the newspaper every day! So what do they do? They buy a professional sports franchise. Presto! Chango! Their names are now instantly recognized by the masses.
          In the sick, self-referential world of Jewish culture, the equivalent of such a despondent millionaire is a Jew like Pisar. By writing this “autobiographical” account of his alleged experiences in the camps, he attained instant celebrity in the Jewish-controlled media, and icon status among fellow Jews. Gullible Gentiles fall for this every time, but Jews like Wiesel, Pisar and your weirdo Wolf Murmelstein know very well that this is all a sick Jewish game, and has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with anything that ever happened in the real world.
          I explain in great detail the workings of these Jewish schemers in my book “Holocaust High Priest, Elie Wiesel, Night, the Memory Cult, and the Rise of Revisionism.”.
          Thank you, sir, for running this excellent educational site. It is the world’s best Holocaust site, thanks in large part to the amazing pictures you show.

          Comment by Warren B. Routledge — August 18, 2015 @ 11:49 am

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