him with a lawsuit that would have shown that the
extreme leftist press was more unfair to its employees than the Springer
monopoly, but I finally got the money. |
I shall let Marco tell you the
story of the Lischka operation. It could have ended tragically, but it was
actually often quite comic.
In March 1971, Beate
and Serge told me all about Lischka, and their plan to kidnap the former top
man in the Nazi police in France.
I asked them: "Who is going to help
"That's the problem. We don't have anyone."
I recalled my
conversation of a week earlier with a Jewish photographer named Eli, who had
warned me that the whole extreme left in France was full of communist cells and
that the only organizations that were not communist were the Jewish ones. I
suggested to Serge:
"You should get in touch with him and see if he
knows anyone who would help."
The three of us met in a pub. Eli's
mother had been deported and killed after the Vel d'Hiv round-up ordered by
Lischka, but his first reaction was negative. As far as he was concerned, Nazi
criminals were hidden in the depths of a virgin forest. It seemed extraordinary
and even insane to him that the man who had issued the orders for that round-up
could be living openly and peacefully under his own name in Cologne. Then Serge
showed him documentary evidence.
It finally got through to Eli that it
was not a matter of an imaginary band of avengers executing Beate and Serge's
scheme, but that if people like him or me did not do it, Lischka would go on
living out a happy life in Cologne.
"Listen," he said to Serge. "I
don't like to put the finger on fellows, but basically I'm willing to go along
His decision and his reasoning persuaded me also. I found
the project intriguing, almost historic. Going after Lischka could bring to
light a number of facts that had not been officially disclosed since the war. I
believe there is no distinction between Germans and non-Germans; everyone is
more or less to blame. There was no reason why a non-Jewish Frenchman like
myself should not take part in such a righteous undertaking.
In the last
analysis we were not going to commit a crime, for we