More than 6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis during World War II. For the first time, however, a "miracle" that occurred before its end is also known. It's about video which recorded the liberation of 2.500 Jews by the Nazis as they were en route by train from Bergen-Belsen to the Theresienstadt concentration camps on April 13, 1945.

The video is brought to the public for the first time by an American history professor. The train stopped near the village of Farsleben due to fighting between the US and Germany. So when the locomotive stopped, about 80 miles west of Berlin, and an American jeep and a tank appeared, the Nazi officers abandoned their posts and fled, leaving the 2.500 prisoners behind.

The "Miracle at Farsleben," as it is called, is an iconic event of the Holocaust that was thought to have never been captured on film. But now, thanks to the efforts of a research team formed after an effort by American history professor Matthew Rosell, three minutes of chilling footage has been discovered in the United States National Archives after nearly eight decades.

The footage, whose authenticity has been verified by renowned World War II historians, brings to life the harrowing stories of the soldiers who rescued the prisoners as well as the survivors, four of whom have identified themselves in the images.

Holocaust survivor Jacob Barzilai, 90, said he recognized his 12-year-old self and his mother and sister in the footage. "It was unimaginable, incomprehensible and I couldn't breathe when I found what I had been looking for for years," he said.

George Gross, a tank commander present at the liberation, recalled: “They all looked like skeletons, so hungry, their faces sick. When they saw us, they started laughing with joy, if you can call it laughter. It was more like a burst of pure, almost hysterical relief."

Source: LIFO, 3.8.2023