Janos Gottlieb, Cleopatra Mociutchi and Werner Ullrich

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  • Photo taken in:
    Iasi
    Country name at time of photo:
    Romania (1945-1989)
    Country name today:
    Romania

The person on the right is me [Janos Gottlieb], in the center is my wife [Cleopatra Mociutchi], she was already my wife, on the left is Werner Ullrich - Werner is his first name, Ullrich is his family name. I don’t know anymore precisely when, by the end of the 1960s they set up an astrodome, which roofs over the observatory. It was him who did it, he came from Germany. The director of the observatory, who was a good friend of mine - he was much older than me, yet we were on good terms - asked me to keep him company, for I spoke German. On this photo we are together with my wife in a restaurant. It’s very interesting: when he saw I was friendly with him, he opened up, and told me: ‘Listen, I have to confess something to you. I used to be a Hitlerjugend.’ I answered to this: ‘How old were you?’ He says: ‘Twelve.’ ‘Did you have any choice?’ ‘No, I didn’t, it was compulsory.’ ‘Then it’s not worthy mentioning.’ That was it. We are still on good terms, we are in contact, sometimes we call or write to each other. He lives in Dresden. I visited him two or three times, I stayed at him for one week with my wife; he took us around and showed us the town. He’s a good-looking man. He’s one or two years younger than me, and it’s interesting, his wife and I are of the same age, so he too has a wife who is older than him.

I wrote down in my memoirs that they had lodged two German officers in our house. [Ioan Gottlieb: Euch werde ich`s noch zeigen (I'll show you) - Herausgegeben von Erhard Roy Wiehn, Hartung-Gorre Verlag, Konstanz, 2006] We had four rooms, and in those times the army used to rent rooms for the officers. We didn't have any problems with them. The truth is that they didn't even talk to us. They weren't SS officers, but Wehrmacht officers, there's a big difference. So there were two officers. They had an orderly too, a German soldier, who didn't live there, but came each morning. I don't know what he was doing for them. He was a young boy, not much older than me. We became friends. He was German, I speak German well, we talked in the garden, things like that. There wasn't any problem. When they were gathering us into the ghetto, first they took us to a truck, where everybody from the surroundings was forced to get up. This truck stood at the end of the street, not far from our house. The orderly wasn't there when they took us away. But he arrived home and found out what had happened. He ran after us, found me in the truck, we hold hands, and he wished me all the best. Not all the Germans are anti-Semite. Human relationships are complicated, very complicated.

Interview details

Interviewee: Janos Gottlieb
Interviewer:
Emoke Major
Month of interview:
October
Year of interview:
2006
Iaşi , Romania

KEY PERSON

Janos Gottlieb
Year of birth:
1929
City of birth:
Baia Mare
Country name at time of birth:
Romania (1920-1945)
Occupation
after WW II:
University professor

Other Person

Cleopatra Mociutchi
Year of birth:
1926
City of birth:
Cotiugenii Mari
Country name at time of birth:
Romania (1920-1945)
Occupation
after WW II:
University professor

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