Member of Rothschild Family Among French Hostages Taken from Paris

Fifteen of 50 French hostages taken at Drancy by the SS Captain Brunner during the Nazi retreat escaped at Nancy, according to Jacques Langberg, one of the escaped prisoners, who arrived in Paris today. Among those who did not escape were Marcel Bloch, airplane manufacturer, and Armand Cohen, member of the Rothschild family.

Brunner, together with his chief assassin, drove the hostages in a loaded truck to the University of Nancy which had been transformed into a fortress by the Gestapo. Not fed for three days, the hostages were forced to carry munitions to defense positions established in the University towers.

A scrubwoman slipped Langberg the password “Madelein” and he was able to escape from the University and join a French Forces of the Interior detachment that was battling the Germans in nearby caves and forests. The FFL gave U.S. forces data on German positions in the Lehay Forest, enabling the Americans to unleash a back-breaking bombardment. After helping in the liberation of Nancy, Langberg hitch-hiked to Paris.

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