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Joel ( Nussbecher Emil ) Palgi
Birth country: Hungary
Birth city: Kolozsvár (Cluj)
Birth date: 01/01/1918
In 1939 Joel made aliya and arrived in Kibbutz Afikim. In 1942 he enlisted in the Palmah and in 1943 volunteered for the mission of the paratroopers in German occupied Europe. He did the training and, on 15.4.1944, with Peretz Goldstein and two British soldiers he parachuted on Yugoslav territory. He arrived at the headquarters of the 6th Corps of the partisans in the Papok Mountains. On 19.6.1944 with Peretz he crossed the Drava River and arrived in Hungary. From the day they crossed the border they were followed by Hungarian counter-espionage men. Joel and Peretz arrived in Budapest within one day and first met with Dr. Israel Kasztner one of the leaders of the Aid and Rescue Committee and then members of the underground Zionist youth movements. Joel was arrested by the Hungarian counter-espionage on June 27 and Peretz on July 1st. The Germans demanded that the Hungarians hand over the two paratroopers to them. Joel was taken to the Gestapo prison on Fő Street and from there both Joel and Peretz were moved to the central Hungarian military prison on Margit Boulevard where Hanna Szenes was already imprisoned. Joel was interrogated and tortured but did not reveal his secrets or the goal of his mission. As the Red Army approached the Hungarian capital, Joel and Peretz were transferred to the prison in Komárom.
On 8.12.1944 both paratroopers were put on a train wagon and were on their way to Germany. Joel managed to jump off the train and to return to Budapest where he found refuge with members of the Zionist underground. Peretz was taken to Germany and perished there.

After the war Joel returned to Israel and enlisted in the Israeli Air Force. He served as the managing-director of “El-Al” and as the Israeli ambassador in Tanzania.


BIBLIOGRAPHY :
“Into the Inferno”, 1948,(2nd publication: 1977)


Occupation:
War organization:
War undergound: Paratrooper
War unit: ---
Rank: ---
Job:
Country of combat: German occupied Europe
Region of combat: ---
City combat:
Framework of combat:
Death date:
Death place: 1978
Death reason:

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