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Visiting Info
Opening Hours:

Sunday to Wednesday: 09:00-17:00
Thursday: 9:00-20:00 *
Fridays and Holiday eves: 09:00-14:00.

Yad Vashem is closed on Saturdays and all Jewish Holidays.

* The Holocaust History Museum, Museum of Holocaust Art, Exhibitions Pavilion and Synagogue are open until 20:00. All other sites close at 17:00.

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Boris Slutskii about Iurii Kaganovich

The poet Boris Slutskii, who was an officer in the Red Army during the war, described a meeting with Iuda (Iurii) Kaganovich:

"One of the broadcasters via the division's propaganda loudspeakers, Iurka [Iurii] Kaganovich, a young fellow, a [former] student of the Kiev [University] literature faculty (whose poetry was probably not bad), asked to take leave from his job and undertake intelligence missions. He was a quick-tempered and withdrawn person. At work, on enemy territory, he would use his fists on his fellow intelligence operatives who would not obey him, striking them in the face and around the eyes with his weak fists.

In 1944, when for three weeks the Soviet army was quite ignorant about the situation of the enemy and the Soviet intelligence officers were three times a day either threatened with being transferred to a 'punishment' unit [i.e. of being sent to certain death] or being promised a sea of vodka, he [Kaganovich] crawled into enemy trenches and, hailing in a good German a snow-covered sentry and then gagging him, together with three other intelligence operatives from his group dispatched to capture [a 'tongue'], put him into a state that was convenient for bringing him through mine fields. In the course of three months, he captured seven 'tongues.' This was the work of a whole intelligence company (a successful one)! He was proud, even arrogant. In the period of half a year he received four military honors, which was quite rare even for the commander of a division. He was upset at the beating of POWs during interrogation. But he changed radically: he became merciless toward the fritzes [Germans], personally shooting all of those superfluous prisoners after he had seen what was left at one of the 'death camps.' During the Iassy (Iaşi) - Kishinev (Chișinău) operation, when thousands of columns of unguarded fritzes sought to be taken prisoner and cart drivers collected forage caps full of wrist watches, with six other intelligence personnel, Kaganovich, settled on a hill and began to spray automatic weapon fire on the defenseless, exhausted fritzes. At first, they ran away but then turned and trampled the intelligence men. Kaganovich's body was found later. The huge Order of Bogdan Chmielnicki [that he was wearing] was ripped off his chest with a dagger or knife, along with his military shirt, underwear, and some of his flesh. Not long before his death, he said to me: 'My comrades are surprised, they can hardly believe that I am a Jew. Major Kaliada said to me: 'What kind of a Jew are you? You are a Jewish gypsy.' And Kaganovich added angrily: 'All of this is right, well deserved.'"

Boris Slutsky, Zapiski o voine (Notes about the War), St. Petersburg, 2000, pp. 153-154.