I still remember that we were besieged by a hungry German dog. He looked furiously to the baby and we understood that we had to drop it.

I still remember that we were besieged by a hungry German dog. He looked furiously to the baby and we understood that we had to drop it. Suddenly, a courageous gunshot tore the dog’s body and retrieved silence to the place. It was night; we couldn’t see nor feel but the resistant snow. One of the tall and free woods introduced a dark, big boned figure. We could see from his color that he is not a German soldier. My mother in gratitude kneeled to the black statue and so I did. Gently, he asked us to stand up. We were lucky. He recognized us as Jewish ladies. He spoke our language and could even utter some German words. He could see that we have just arrived from the German camp. He understood our need of food, and humanely shared his meal.

We walked away from the dead dog, and made our way inside the organized woods. Only silence broke our silence. The black soldier, your father, started to ask about the number of the German regiments in the camp, their weapons’ supplies and lots of things. Our silence answered them all.
“I met some Jews yesterday on the other side; I’ll try to take you there, ” murmured your father.
We followed his gigantic foot steps, breaking ashes of ice. He didn’t look back, and bowed his head in mere respect. I started to inspect his body; didn’t really look like the image I had about Arabs in the other side of the world. I minded our religious conflict and stitched scattered words he might say, or gestures he might do. I was sixteen.

The white snow revealed broken shadows of hungry Jewish women. They were quite a large number. They heard our march and hided behind each other. Your father, the soldier, made a sign to me to move forward. I did explain to them that we had just escaped from the concentration camp. They looked suspiciously at your father. He removed his rifle backward. He made some steps of trust. A young lady raised and uttered few cold words, “we didn’t eat for two nights”. Gently, your father gave the rest of his food. The women wrestled to have a fair share.

Appropriated from Hello Chichaoua


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