] cratic Republic, had asked to help
defend me. Kaul came to see me, and I decided to accept his offer. Lischka's
Gestapo had massacred communist Resistance fighters too, and it was, therefore,
fitting for me to have a communist lawyer on my side. |
Kaul told me:
"You can be sure that this trip was not easy. If Honnecker, the new leader of
the East German Communist Party, had not ordered me in writing to undertake
your defense, I would never have been able to get past the wall of high-level
civil servants who are thoroughly opposed to you. I bring you Honnecker's
greetings and respects."
I was proud of that acknowledgment, whether it
came in spite of or because of Warsaw and Prague and my attacks on East German
anti-Semites. It came from a man who had not spent two weeks in a tidy cell
like mine, but ten years in Hitler's jails.
I told Kaul that Serge was
taking steps to get me an Israeli lawyer who would represent Lischka's Jewish
victims at my trial. There is great antagonism between the Democratic Republic
and Israel, but Kaul was not offended. Perhaps he thought that Israel would not
do anything about it.
At first the news of my arrest did not
attract much attention in Israel. Serge had asked the Israeli Embassy in Paris
for an Israeli lawyer to undertake my defense, but its answer was slow in
corning. He had also telexed an open letter to the principal Israeli
journalists. When that was published it elicited opinions much in my favor from
Galey-Zahal, the army radio station, and columnists on the two big Israeli
papers. Davar's Israel Noiman was the first to react in his "Open Letter
to a Hardened Criminal The Silence on the B.K. Case Is a Scandal."
Dear Beate and Serge:
For a long time
now my conscience has demanded that I write you this open letter. I was hoping
that persons who are much more important than I would have preceded me with
actions that would be much more impressive and useful than this letter. But, to
my great surprise, I have waited in vain. That is why I am writing you now.
Perhaps this letter will help rouse from their torpor people who should already
have taken action by appeals and protests. Young Jews in France have awakened;
that makes our silence here in Israel all the more baffling. That silence
cannot continue. It is a vicious insult to the victims of the Holocaust. There
are many survivors' organizations here, but none has taken the trouble to tell
the public that Beate was arrested for revealing that some