Third Riflemen’s Regiment of Podhale

This is the 3rd Riflemen’s Regiment of Podhale in front of the synagogue in Biala. I took this photograph in September 1938.

I was called up to the station in Cieszyn - the 4th Podhale Riflemen's Regiment of the 21st Podhale Division was stationed there. Because I had graduated from high school, I was sent to the officer cadet school. But after three weeks I was moved to Biala to the 3rd Podhale Riflemen's Regiment. This was because I was a Jew and they didn't want Jews in the officer cadet school in Cieszyn. There were many Jews in the regiment in Biala - of my friends I remember Baruch Kostenbaum, Idzio Wittenberg from Kazimierz, Romek Kinstling from Podgorze. After that we all served on the front.

They moved me in September and we took the oath in October 1938, because we were considered to be honest, reliable and useful soldiers. We were later stationed in Zaolzie, which was occupied by Poland at that time. And we stayed there for a while and then returned to Biala. In March I got promoted to corporal and on 3rd May I became lance sergeant in the 3rd Podhale Riflemen's Regiment. Our commander was married to a Jewess, the daughter of the owner of a wool factory. 

I was supposed to leave the army on 30th September 1939, but the war broke out on 1st September, so I went off to fight the Germans.