WHEREVER THEY MAY BE
© 1972, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
 
 
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dubious evidence was believed. Generally I myself am not capable of recognizing a person I met only a day ago unless there is something striking about him, so I tend to question the accuracy of persons who, after twenty-seven years, say they are absolutely certain. The opposite was just as likely; in spite of the fact that Altmann was certainly Barbie and that the Munich prosecutor had stated that he was "one hundred percent sure that any German court whatever would be convinced," it could very well have happened that those witnesses might have proved unable to identify him. In that event, what would have happened? I would have gone rushing around with all my data, and no one would have believed me.

Among the witnesses on the ORTF program was Mme. Simone Lagrange, whom Barbie had interrogated in June 1944, when her name was Simone Kadousche:
I was then thirteen years old. When we reached Gestapo headquarters on place Bellecour, we were put into a room on the fourth floor, where I saw Barbie for the first time. He came toward my parents and me, gently stroking a big gray cat, and without raising his voice he asked my mother whether I was her only child. Mama replied that she had two younger children but she did not know where they were. Then Barbie, who had paid no attention at all to my father, came over to me and politely asked me where my two little brothers were. When I told him I did not know, he gently set his cat on a table, then struck me brutally hard twice, saying he could find them well enough himself.

The German woman who was our keeper advised Mama to tell him where my brothers were if she wanted to escape an interrogation, but Mama and I knew we were going to be sent to a concentration camp where little children were killed.

On June 7 they came to take me to place Bellecour, where Barbie himself was waiting to question me again. He said politely that if I told him where my brothers were he would send all three of us to an old folks' home, where we would be well taken care of and not deported. After I told him again that I did not know, he came over to me, grabbed me by my long hair, and yanked me close to him. Then he struck me over and over again for at least fifteen minutes. I was in great pain, but I did not want to cry. Finally he let me go, and I fell to the floor. He kicked me in the stomach until I got up again. Then he himself took me to jail. He told my mother that she had no heart to allow her daughter to be beaten, and if she would talk now, he would stop interrogating me. Then he struck her several times.

I was taken back to the Gestapo four times, but you can be sure that they got nothing out of me. Then they put me into a different cell. I
     
   
 
WHEREVER THEY MAY BE
© 1972, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
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