Thursday, 26 March 2015


3 June 1944: a critical date

A week ago Conductive World summarised an article by Eliezer M. Rabinovich that had appeared in Hungary Today, itself an author's summary of a much longer article originally published in Russian. His article is a daring re-evaluation of Admiral Miklós Horthy's role in the survival of so many Budapest Jews towards the end of Hungary's active involvement in the Second World War:

Hungary Today has now published the second part of its summary:

Part 2 starts with the writer Sándor Török's showing Horthy's daughter-in law Countess Ilona Edelsheim-Gyulai a copy of the 'Auschwitz Notebook' that described in detail the scale and the mechanisms of the extermination at Auschwitz. (Later Sándor Török was an acquaintance and admirer of András Pető.)

The Countess took the Notebook to Regent Horthy, the date being recorded in her diary: 3 June 1944. Rabinovich's central point is –
...on July 3 the Admiral learned about the gas chambers. Why the exact date is so important? Because if the Regent learned sometime in June but took action only in July, while 12 thousand people were deported daily, then he is indecisive and not very attentive. But if he learned in the late evening of July 3, and on July 6 the deportations were stopped, then he is a hero!
Jews and others would still be murdered in Budapest till the city's liberation by the Soviet Army, but in (relatively) small numbers. András Pető was one of the more than two-hundred thousand Budapest Jews who survived.


Rabinovich, E. M. (2015) How 'anti-Semite' Miklós Horthy saved the Jews of Budapest – Part II, Hungary Today, 18 March

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