Flight Through Uzbekistan and Iran | A Shattered World
The Druks family from Oswieçim – Iro, Lucja and their two small children, nine year old Adam and four year old Elinoar – fled eastwards to Lvov when the Germans invaded Poland. Lucja’s parents, Joachim (Hayim) and Josephina (Pepi) Liebermann, fled with them. Iro Druks’ family lived in Vienna and were deported from their homes to death camps during the war.
Before the war the extended Druks & Liebermann families lived in comfort in Oswieçim, Poland. Iro Druks served as a lawyer for many of the residents of the town and Haim Liebermann was the director of a successful factory. When Germany invaded Poland the family escaped east to Lvov in the factory car to Soviet controlled territory. When, as refugees, they refused Soviet citizenship in the summer of 1940, they were deported to slave labor camps in the eastern regions of the Soviet Union. Only after the German invasion of the Soviet Union, were they released and allowed to leave the camps.
The Druks and Leiberman families decided to distance themselves from the front and continue their journey eastwards. At the beginning of 1942, the two families reached Samarkand, Uzbekistan. The Druks family managed to reach units of General Ander’s troops and to accompany them to Teheran (the Polish army formed after Germany’s attack of the Soviet Union in 1941 and commanded by the Polish Government in exile in London). On the last day of 1942 the Druks family immigrated to Eretz Israel. Haim & Pepi Liebermann who couldn’t join the journey to Teheran due to their age, stayed behind in Samarkand until the end of the war. They returned to Oswieçim and only managed to immigrate to Israel at a later date.
Yad Vashem Artifacts Collection
Gift of Elinoar (Druks) Paleiov, Rehovot, and Adam Druks, Kfar Vradim, Israel