http://www.chabad.org/special/TheHeroicStruggle/004.html In Spalerno . . .Suddenly, we heard the door locks being opened. Terrorizing fear fell upon the three prisoners. They all remained seated in their places, their faces white as chalk. I did not understand the reason for their fright. I didn't know why, but I was also shaken. The door opened and the division head entered. His eyes fierce, his face livid, he called out, "Who asked for me?" "I did," I replied. Investigator's Name: Lulav . . .From when do you know the Rebbe Schneersohn? In summer of 1920 I saw him every day until he went to Moscow in September 1921. I know that in summer 1921 Rebbe Schneersohn was called to Cheka and they told him of plans to exile him to the north of Russia. Who turns to the Rebbe Schneersohn? Many Jews turn to him. They ask his advice. What type of Jews? Many of them are hiding from the G.P.U.. The Rebbe Schneersohn tells them to stay underground and not to go to the G.P.U. What were the circumstances? In the end of 1896 I was a member of the Bund, and afterwards I was the party representative of the "Jewish Socialist Workers Party" to the Sejm. In 1906 I was sent to Lubavitch. There I got to know the Rebbe Schneersohn – the father and the son. Why were you sent to Lubavitch? To solve a problem with a student of the Yeshivah who was a member of our party. What happened? In the Yeshivah they realized that he was a member of our party, and when he returned from a meeting they stopped him and placed him in a locked room. The party members took up arms and went to free the student. The Yeshivah students were there with sticks but we fired into the air and they ran away. Schneersohn, the son, passed the information on to the police and the police stopped the party members who went to save the student. How did you come into the picture? After this incident they sent me to Lubavitch to deal with Schneersohn, the son. I had three demands: 1) To free our party members. 2) To absolve the excommunication imposed on the student's family. 3) To give 5,000 rubles to the party. What was Schneersohn's response? He agreed to the first two conditions but not to the third one. What was your response? We began various types of threats to Schneersohn. We also threw stones through his windows.
The Chassidic Discourse "Baruch Hagomel" penned by the Rebbe on the day of his liberation.
The Rebbe with his son-in-law and successor,
Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson. Adar I 25, 1935,
A New Tork Times clipping about the Rebbe.
A clipping fromthe Baltimore News concerning the Rebbe.
The Rebbe in his stateroom aboard the S.S. Drottingholm upon his arrival in New York
. . .On Tuesday, the 12th of Tammuz (July 12), coinciding with the Rebbe's birthday in 5640 (1880), the Rebbe appeared at the headquarters of the G.P.U., accompanied by Rabbi Althaus, for his obligatory weekly appearance. The local G.P.U. official greeted him genially and informed him of his release: "You are totally freed from the need of any further appearances.
"The order has been received to grant you full freedom, and I regard it as a personal privilege to be the first one to inform you of your complete amnesty." Rabbi Althaus reacted with intense emotion; his face went from deep livid to palest white and back; the Rebbe had to calm him and help him regain his composure.
The Rebbe's daughter Chaya Moussia called the family in Leningrad by telephone to inform them of the liberation, with the added warning to keep the information secret. She also sent a telegram to make sure they understood clearly. They signed the telegram, in the place of the name, Bli Pirsum — "without publicity."
The news of the Rebbe's release spread with lightning speed. Even before he returned to the house of the Shochet, the news was already known. Upon his arrival home, the Rebbe viewed an unusual and moving spectacle—the chassid Reb Michael Dworkin was dancing round the house, in his hand a bottle of wine, and upon his lips a melody with Russian words, singing with great feeling: "Nyet, nyet nikavo"—"Nothing exists aside from
The small son of the chassid danced about in somersault fashion, his feet flailing above and his hands firmly placed against the fence.
On that very day, the 12th of Tammuz, a large gathering of Jews assembled in his lodging in Kastroma and he delivered the Ma'amar (chassidic discourse) beginning:
"G-d is among those that help me."
The day was a legal holiday and the G.P.U. office could not issue the actual Certificate of Release until the following day.
The order from Moscow was so emphatic that when the Rebbe arrived the next day to receive his release papers, the official asked that he write next to his signature that the delay was not their fault.
After receiving the Certificate of Release, the Rebbe delivered the ma'amar "Blessed be the One Who bestows good upon the unworthy, who has bestowed good upon me", before the large number of people who again gathered in his dwelling.
On the 14th of Tammuz (July 14), at nine in the morning, the Rebbe left the city of Kastroma a free citizen, and on Friday the 16th he arrived in Leningrad accompanied by two emissaries especially chosen by the Jewish community of Kastroma. Because of the aforementioned danger, only a brief stay in Leningrad was planned...
…Many years later, on the 12th of Tammuz 5705 (1945), the Rebbe declared:
I was confined for nineteen days. At such a time one is subject to the ordeal of controlling one's eyes, sealing one's ears, and desisting from speech. In that period of my life, I lost all sense of gratification that is derived from material things, not only for a while, but permanently. Then I did not think of myself at all.
What thoughts could I have about myself while being constantly confronted with the fragility of life? I heard the begging of the prisoners, pleading for life, only to see them taken out to be shot ten minutes later. My own idea then was that the initial decay of a seed is a preliminary necessity for later flourishing and growth. I never experienced a sense of solitude; I was always mindful of the fact that I possessed revered ancestors: my father, grandfather, great grandfather, and all the luminous, holy figures whose courage and merit would endure eternally. I reflected on my father's discourse, 'She girds her loins with strength' which I had heard thirty years before…