Nazis Ordered Warsaw Jews to Set Up 2 Army Brothels, Szoszkes Charges in Affidavit

An affidavit charging that the Nazi authorities in Warsaw ordered Jewish leaders to set up two military brothels, one for officers and the other for soldiers, and to supply Jewish girls for them, has been made out by Dr. Henryk Szoszkes, one of the leaders to whom the order was issued.

Dr. Szoszkes, former vice-president of the Warsaw Jewish Community Council and a banker, succeeded in escaping from the former Polish capital within two weeks after a Gestapo official had given him the order. He arrived in New York last month for a visit here prior to continuing to Palestine, where he has been appointed honorary Polish Consul in Tel Aviv.

According to the affidavit, a copy of which was made available to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency today, both Dr. Szoszkes and the Jewish Community president categorically refused to comply with the Gestapo demands, informing the authorities that they would prefer death.

The order was served upon Dr. Szoszkes, he stated in his affidavit, on Thursday, Nov. 2, 1939, by a Gestapo Unit Leader named Wende. Wende, the affidavit asserts, came into Dr. Szoszkes’ office and, without preliminaries, made the following declaration:

“As you know, we have in Warsaw quite a large garrison of young, healthy men, who are suffering from a lack of sexual relations. Casual meetings with women of the streets have already resulted in many cases of venereal diseases. This is a situation which we cannot allow to continue. You are, therefore, in the name of the Gestapo, ordered to indicate to us the persons in your community who will be responsible for the organization of a brothel (he expressed it in German as a “puff,” the affidavit states) to serve the needs of our army.”

Wende, waving aside indignant protestations by Dr. Szoszkes and a declaration that the command would never be carried out by any member of the Jewish Community, went on:

“As a matter of fact, we will need two brothels: one for officers and a separate one for privates. We will indicate to your representatives how to assemble and segregate the girls. We are planning to arrange the officers’ brothel quite comfortably. We will furnish you with the best of linen and furniture. Incidentally, this will not be a bad business venture–perhaps the best in present-day Warsaw The Jewish Community will be able to draw a nice profit from it.”

The same order was delivered on the same day to the 60-year-old president of the Community, a chemist by profession, by the chief Unit-Leader of the Gestapo, Capt. Botz, the affidavit charged. The president also indicated his preference for death rather than to comply with the order.

Copies of the affidavit will be submitted by Dr. Szoszkes to the Polish Embassy, the American Jewish Committee and the American Jewish Congress.

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