EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The last living Holocaust survivor in El Paso — 95-year-old Tibor Schaechner — says he’s been watching the news about the war between Israel and Hamas.
“I am very disappointed what happened because Israel has the best intelligence department in the world called the Mossad and how did they not know what was going on. I cannot figure it out,” said Schaechner about the Hamas attack on Israel.
On Tuesday, President Joe Biden reaffirmed U.S. support for Israel on day four of their war with Hamas.
“This is terrorism. But sadly for the Jewish people, just not new. This attack is brought to the surface painful memories. The scars led by a millennia of anti-semitism and genocide, the Jewish people. So in this moment, we must be crystal clear. We stand with Israel. We stand with Israel,” Biden said.
Shaechner says he heard the president speak and said he still has dreams about the Holocaust.
“I dream a lot about it, can’t forget it,” he said.
He showed KTSM a photo on his wall of himself, his sister and his mother wearing a yellow Stars of David on their clothing.
Tibor Shaechner with his mother and sister
He says the photo was taken to send to his father, who in March 1944 when the Nazis invaded Hungary was sent into slave labor. However, he says he doesn’t believe his father ever received the photo.
“I survived because of many different stories. How I survived? I was young. I was 15 years old but my father never came back from the camps,” Schaechner said.
He said his sister, who is in the photo, died when she was just 10 years old when a bomb was dropped on their home.
“Part of the city where a wall was built, where the Jews used to live, and we were in the Budapest Ghetto and that was the same thing and a bomb fell and my little sister died, got suffocated by the bricks. Me and my mother got digged out, but my mother was the same never again,” said Schaechner.
At the El Paso Holocaust Museum, photos of Schaechner are on display, the survivor telling KTSM there was something he wanted to emphasize as Israel is at war with Hamas.
“This goes on with the Jewish people for thousands of years but thank God, we’re still here and somehow this problem will get solved. How? I don’t know but somehow it’s going to get solved,” Schaechner said.
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