The Freedom Pact

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#255: Tova Friedman - My Story Of Surviving Auschwitz, The Gas Chamber, Starvation & More

Tova Friedman is a holocaust survivor of Auschwitz. After surviving the liquidation of the Jewish ghetto in Central Poland where she lived as a toddler, Tova was five when she and her parents were sent to a Nazi labour camp, and almost six when she and her mother were forced into a packed cattle truck and sent to Auschwitz II, also known as the Birkenau extermination camp, while her father was transported to Dachau.

Malcolm Brabant also joined us and co-authored the book. Malcolm is a veteran foreign correspondent with experience reporting from over 80 countries.

During six months of incarceration in Birkenau, Tova witnessed atrocities that she could never forget, and experienced numerous escapes from death. She is one of a handful of Jews to have entered a gas chamber and lived to tell the tale.

As Nazi killing squads roamed Birkenau before abandoning the camp in January 1945, Tova and her mother hid among corpses. After being liberated by the Russians they made their way back to their hometown in Poland. Eventually Tova’s father tracked them down and the family was reunited.

In this interview today, I spoke with Tova about:
- Her earliest memories of Auschwitz
- Having her head shaved and tattooed at 5 years old
- What it was like sleeping next to dead corpses
- How she survived the Gas Chamber
- What she would say to Adolf Hitler today & more

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