Hilda Liebman

Israel family reunion

On a whole different front, Walter is getting ready to meet up with our Israeli family next week, as he travels there despite the war before meeting up with Tanya in the Ukraine. Meanwhile, Joanne has canceled her visit to Israel, but will instead travel with Lani to Venice, Paris and London. In London, she has hopes to contact Helga's cousing Edit who is reported by one of the young Israeli relatives to be alive and well.

To give a flavor, here is a series of emails, with Walter's latest update on contingency plans for meeting the family if Afeq remains unsafe.


Who was Emile Gissot?

Yesterday, as a result of our contact with Olivia Mattis at the Aristides de Sousa Mendes Foundation, we learned the identity of the Portuguese consular official in Toulouse who issued a Portugal transit visa to Elly and Helga Ruby on July 11, 1940. Here is that visa. Notice the signature in two places of one Emile Gissot.

Intrigue at Neuilly as a coup is plotted

Why would Colonel Engelke move from his position as chief of SS adminstration in Paris in June 1944 to an SS prison cell in Dachau in April 1945, if in fact he's the same person? That is the implied question that forum poster Ian Sayer asks on the Axis History Forum mentioned previously.

The answer is speculative, but it leads to a theory about what might have been discussed at those parties with Madame Kleinknecht, the one-time cabaret dancer who is now a premier hostess in Nazi-occupied Paris.

Corrupt SS operations chief Fritz Engelke

The Der Spiegel article mentions SD chief Colonel Engelke as a regular at the Madame Kleinknect's salon. He doesn't rate a Wikipedia entry, but there is a fascinating discussion thread about him on Axis History Forum, described as an apolitical forum for discussions on the Axis nations, as well as the First and Second World Wars. From information on the thread from three researchers, we can piece together a biography.


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