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March 9, 2016 3:45 pm

Jewish Actor Dustin Hoffman Weeps After Discovering Great-Grandmother Escaped Soviet Concentration Camp (VIDEO)

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Actor Dustin Hoffman discovered he had an ancestor that survived a Soviet concentration camp. Photo: PBS.

Actor Dustin Hoffman discovered that an ancestor of his had survived a Soviet concentration camp. Photo: PBS.

Famed actor Dustin Hoffman was reduced to tears on Tuesday after learning that his great-grandmother had escaped a Soviet concentration camp before starting a life for herself in America, People magazine reported.

The Oscar-winning star, who is Jewish, found out about his great-grandmother, Libba, on the season finale of Finding Your Roots, a PBS show in which celebrities scour ancestral records to learn about their family’s history. The show revealed that Libba had been taken from her home in Ukraine to a Russian camp when the Bolsheviks targeted Jews after the outbreak of the Russian civil war in 1917. She was 53 when she entered the camp, where she remained for five years. Both her husband and son were killed by the Soviet state security force, the Cheka.

Along with many other Jews fleeing Eastern Europe, she made her way to Argentina, and ultimately to America.

Looking at his great-grandmother’s medical records from Ellis Island, Hoffman, 78, discovered that Libba had entered the US in 1930 at age 62. The records show that her left arm had been amputated, she suffered from poor vision and was described as senile. Libba settled with family in Chicago, where she remained until she died in 1944 at the age of 76.

Tuesday night’s episode also highlighted Hoffman’s Jewish heritage, which his parents kept a secret.

“She was a hero,” Hoffman said of his great-grandmother, as tears streamed down his face. “People ask me today: ‘What are you?’ I say, ‘I’m a Jew…’ I’m a Jew. They all survived for me to be here.”

Watch a segment of the episode below:


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  • Rebuild the Temple of Zion

    What a blessing he is doing Tshuva may all of the Jewish people and the Bnei Noach observe the Torah and the Moschiach come speedily in our Days Amen.

  • Deborah Spackman

    Dear Mr. Hoffman:

    I want you to know that I appreciate the genuineness of your emotional response (if you do read this). As an intercessor, I and my family prayed for decades to protect all Jewish lives throughout the Diaspora, and the Word of G-d says each of your tears is collected….ditto for your long suffering ancestors! Your grateful heart’s tribute was deeply moving, and I wish you the VERY BEST OF ALL THAT IS WITHIN THE HEART OF G-D FOR YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES. May Hashem bless you from Zion, may His face shine upon you to be gracious to you; may He lift up your countenance to see the smile of G-d reflected back to you in His eyes, and may the shalom of all retroactive sabbaths since Eden be your portion in the land of the living! Imagine…. the entire nation of Israel goes into enforced silence each sabbath so the whole nation has the possibility to hear the Voice of G-d! Stay real, humble, kind and genuine….you’ll have a wonderful reward then :D! Much love and respect from one of your prayer warriors, Deborah Spackman

  • Roberto

    This the prelude to the next Oscar nomination delivered by the Zio Jewish Elite in Hollywood his last attempt to seal his name

    Though I can’t necessarily say I’m impressed with that, I did feel for him to come to terms with being a Jew is no easy task of his generation. He has clearly done some soul searching. I feel a movie brewing up for him where expressing his jewishness is tantemount to Oscar receiving because to be Jewish is obviously the grander statement than Polish, or Russian or even American…

  • I am polish! Why don’t you be quiet and believe in God and his Son and the Holy Spirit! You talk and talk and talk and talk and talk! BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST! SHUT UP! GOD SAYS I WILL FORGIVE YOU AND REMEMBER YOUR SINS NO MORE!


    Mr. Hoffman”s ancestors are turning in their graves as it became known how much he hates the Jewish state.

    What a hypocrate.

    • Trish

      From a non Jew the comments here, and I have read about 50 of them, are very revealingly of the Jewish community as a whole. They go from ” I am glad he found himself to f… him what has he done to stand up for ( insert some Jewish holding, organization or group). It really is rather disgusting. This is a TV show folks. It goes over someone’s genealogy supposedly. It isn’t a review of his life and what he has done to be Jewish enough to be accepted. Nor does anyone have to know what you or your family has done to be Jewish enough. These comments are like reading the Old Testament and finding that the Jews being the ” chosen ones” wasn’t what they really wanted unless it is theirway and that usually meant having everything the golden idol, the fatted calf, the 10 commandments, the promised land, etc. I commiserate with you on the holicost on a humanitarian level, it was evil and unforgivable on all levels and should never ever be repeated, but it is not a better than thou competition. Look at what is written by all of you. you sound petty, jealous, hateful with only a few loving, but those are only about 4 out of the fifty. If I had to base my selection of a particular religion on what I read here, yours would not be it. Sorry people that’s how you all present yourself. I look for other qualities than hate, pride, judging, etc. Perhaps what is written here really does represent the Jewish community, in which case perhaps you should look within yourself to solve your own problems. It’s a TV program for Gods sake period.

  • I am a Jewess from Dayton Oh. My grandparents escaped from Riga, latvia and settled in Ohio.
    I wear a gold band that has Hebrew letters reading, NEVER AGAIN. My children had it made in Israel for me because I am so involved withe the Holocaust.
    My brave grandparents are responsible for the Jacobson,Fingerhut families to exist. May they rest in peace.

  • ebg

    Something is missing in this story. His great grandmother was placed in a concentration camp at age 52 and her husband and son were killed by the soviets. She came to the United States at age 62, apparently alone. If her husband and son were killed in the USSR, and she was beyond child bearing years, how does she have biological great grandchildren?

    • Sherry

      It says, “Libba settled with family in Chicago.”

  • Lenny Schafer

    My Jewish parents were ambivalent about religion and offered almost no guidance. It wasn’t until after I became an adult and left home did I study my heritage. I disabused myself of the existential nihilism of atheism. It is a terrible child negligence to remedy. I hope Mr. Hoffman may overcome his, if any. It is never too late to discover the beauty of the universe.

    It was American immigration policy to reject immigrants at that time who were sickly, disabled or destitute. The exception being, then and now, if immigrant came with assets. Libba must have demonstrated such to get accepted.

  • Victor

    BS. Author got “F” for history class. Bolsheviks never targeted jews as a group (also they were sometimes involved to pogroms). They targeted religions of any kind and wealthy people. Redistribution of wealth was the idea of bolsheviks and not nationalism.

  • Manfred

    Soviets were terrorists no lesser than Nazis, and Stalin was same, if not worse than Hitler. They were killing and targeting Jewish, Ukrainian etc. families as well. Millions of Ukrainians were killed by Soviets (as well as millions of Russians themselves). They (Soviets) deserve a Hague trial, but now glorified Putin is glorifying Stalin. Horrible. Part of my (Eastern European) family was also destroyed or deported by Soviet terror. Actually, Soviets are inventors of terrorism, it’s a proven historical fact…

  • Alexandra Hollander

    In Western Christian cultural region, “not” mentioning all victims but just one selected group, is considered very inappropriate. A man in public spotlight weeping over “his own” loss without putting this tragedy in context is inappropriate. “Silencing” is a correct word – I read all the time stories of trauma that happened on Polish occupied and tortured land, recounted by Jewish victims, who do not even mention the tragedy that befell Poland. As if their own drama happened in a vacuum. This is inappropriate. For example, I have never witnessed a ceremony conducted in the Western World/US, commemorating victims of WW 2 during which Jewish leaders would even mention Polish victims, as if they did not deserve commemoration. I am not the one counting percentages and doing mathematical gymnastics in historical collective memory. “Jealousy” is again a very inappropriate interpretation of my post. “Human dignity” and desire to have my ancestors commemorated would be a correct interpretation. The fact that the story is quoted on the Jewish site does not explain why there is zero mentioning of the context of the entire subject. Since the story recounted in the article took place among others on Polish occupied lands (Poland was under German, Russian/Soviet and Austrian partition), not mentioning the suffering and the heroic struggle of Poles against the occupiers and not mentioning how Soviets were targeting all these people is like writing history of Israel without mentioning the Jews.

  • Chandra-Hephziba

    I am a Christian, I love Israel and would sacrifice my own life for an Israeli! Dustin Hoffman I hope you take your heritage seriously and boycott BDS.

    • Elinor Enz

      Pressure must be brought on Israel somehow to get them to stop the vicious violence they are perpetrating on Palestinians and others.

      • Judy

        Who is stabbing civilians on the streets of Israel Now?
        Talk about vicious violence being perpetrated.

    • Gisele Gozlan

      Like your comment!!

  • Horrible story. How many people died in the concentration camps, to live, to invent wonderful things, to create…

  • Yura Dashevsky

    Everyone knew that Mr. Hoffman was a Jew, except Mr. Hoffman.

  • Iwona

    Millions of Polish Catholics were also deported to Siberia. My mother, 17 years old at the time, was one of them, along with her parents and sister. Unlike hundreds of thousands of other Polish civilians, they were fortunate to get out of the “Inhuman land.”

  • Sam

    “when the Bolsheviks targeted Jews after the outbreak of the Russian civil war in 1917.”

    I’m sorry when did that happen? The Bolsheviks and Mensheviks had a huge jewish membership as did most of the Russian left and labour movement at this time, largely in reaction to the pogroms directed by the right. Stalin definitely attempted antisemitic policies after the WW2 but the Bolsheviks did not ‘target the Jews’ in the 1917 revolution!

  • Vlad

    What nonsense. The territory of Ukraine prior to the 20-ies has been had occupied by the Germans, Petliura troops and White Guards, the Bolsheviks were not there at all. Gulag appeared in the 30s. The Bolsheviks did not arrange pogroms – is made of white troops and Petliura, as well as numerous gangs. Among the Bolsheviks had an enormous number of Jews. Who conducted the investigation?

  • Dave

    The Bolsheviks targeted Jews? Since when? The Bolsheviks were largely Jewish. Lenin’s wife was Jewish. Lenin had a Jewish ancestor. Revolutionaries were commonly Jewish. Stalin targeted Jews, much later.

  • Alexandra Hollander

    Again silencing all other victims. Not a word about millions of Poles who were exiled to gulags by millions. Time to pay tribute to others not just one ethnic group.

    • Alana

      This is no way “silencing other victims.“: it`s a personal reaction from one actor. You have an axe to grind?

    • c stern

      yes i do think that it is past time other ethnic groups should be heard why dont they speak up?

    • Emily

      This is a show about one man and his heritage. It’s one man’s story.

      There are a lot of other ethnic groups who suffered in many places, but they aren’t part of Dustin Hoffman’s personal story. This isn’t a general history show, it’s a show in which they take one person’s family story and tell it.

      • Doreen

        well said, Emily.
        other ethnic groups need to be telling their own stories.

    • Jane

      Of course we should recognise and fight for all victims, but do I sniff some anti-semitism here?

    • Esther

      What a disgusting response. First of all, while it is of course important to recognize the murdered Poles, gypsies, homosexuals, communists, etc., six million of the eleven million people murdered in the Holocaust were Jewish. That’s over half. Hitler’s primary focus was on Jews, and recognizing does not silence anyone. Second of all, this isn’t about the Holocaust in general. This is about a specific Jew. If you feel the need to respond this way when one Jew’s personal experience is shared on a JEWISH NEWS SITE, clearly you are the one silencing a minority.

      • Gisele Gozlan

        So very true! You are perfectly right….
        But stil antisemitisme comes naturally in the spirit of some people….that will never change!!!And this is the problem.

    • duPont

      Alexandra, no one is silencing anyone else. I was in Poland this past June and I found it quite telling that when the Polish guide took us to an extermination camp he only talked about his Polish family who had fought in the war. Of course they lived nearby whilst the sky was black with the ashes of the Jews they burned in the ovens there, but who gave a damn anyway. No one, particularly the Poles ever gives a damn about the Jews. It has been that way since time began. Abraham, the father of monotheism and Judaism is turning over in his grave. Remember- as you have said the . . “Poles. . .were exiled to gulags. . .” They lived. Jews did not live. THAT’S a monumental difference.

    • Aaron Rose

      Appreciate the beauty of the video for what it is. If someone wants to make a tribute to honor the Poles, there are tons of opportunities to do that. This doesn’t take away from that. Your comment adds zero value. In fact, it just shows a lack of respect, humility, and intelligence on your part.

      • Gisele Gozlan

        Like this answer

    • jimmy

      Communists called Jews capitalists and murdered them.
      Socialists called Jews communists and murdered them.
      Proletariat called Jews intellectuals and murdered them.
      Intellectuals called Jews manipulators and murdered them.

      • This is the truth ,since before the Romans !…..
        In Bulgaria most of our Jewish community came from Spain after Jewish expulsion from Spain , at that time only the Ottomans in south Europe were accepting them .They were actually welcome there , because the were high end intellectuals , scholars , scientists and business people . Jewish community in Ottoman empire were the only thriving one throughout Europe . Unfortunately they sided with the Turks when the Bulgarian April/1876/ Uprising started ,which end with a blood bath for us -Bulgarians .
        Never-the less , in Bulgaria antisemitism was unknown and only during the WWII was made a state law due to our official government siding with Nazis . The population of Bulgaria strongly opposed those antisemitic laws and made sure /together with the support of Bulgarian Orthodox church / ,that no even one Jewish family will be transferred,to camps in Poland /Germany . It worked some 48 000 Jews were saved . Unfortunately the Nazis did not allow Bulgarian authorities to grant Bulgarian citizenship to Jewish People from the occupied territories of Macedonia ,Greece , Eastern Serbia , Northern Dobrudea , and all of those Jewish communities perish in Concentration camps …The native population in those territories / Macedonians ,Serbs , Greeks/ did not do anything to stop that , they did not oppose loading the Jewish in trains by the Nazis …. So the tragic truth is Bulgarians saved their own ,but failed the neighboring communities of Jews …

        • Lina

          thanks for sharing

    • Shari C

      How does mentioning one group of victims silencing any other victims???? No where does the story indicate Jews were the only victims. The story was simply about Hoffman and the reason why his ancestor was put into a camp. It wasn’t a story about all the victims of Russian concentration camps.

    • mike

      Jealous? I wouldn’t be. In any event, the show was about a prominent actor discovering his routes. Why would there would be commentary unrelated to his routes?

    • Tilford bartman

      Do you have some kind of problem? This article is about the Actor Dustin Hoffman, and his being on this TV show about genealogy. You need to talk to someone about the perverted chip on your shoulder.Even given it has some legitimate basis you are putting it where it is not appropriate, and that is more revealing about you than anything else.

    • Mr. Hoffman is not silencing “all other victims.” He is the interviewee and is telling his family’s story. To insinuate that he “is not paying tribute to other (victims)” is to try to diminish HIS story. Why do you want to make it personal?

    • Alexandra, the show focused on Dustin Hoffman’s historical narrative. It was not a historical documentary on the Gulag which swallowed millions upon millions under Stalin’s murderous tyranny. The central protagonist was his great-grandmother, one of the fortunate refugees to end up in the safety of America. Mention could have been made of innumerable millions of other nationalities but the show ultimately traces one celebrity’s lineage. No silencing or conspiracy here.

    • Joshua Russert

      This is not a zero sum game- you are not being stopped by ANYONE from sharing your truth. Usually comments like this are actually just gaslighting for anti-semites- so please, stop thinking that we are somehow magically keeping Poles, Lesbians and Gays, Jehovas Witnesses, Political Opponents, Armenians, Native Americans, and countless others who have suffered genocide and persecution from speaking out. You advocate for your people, so it sounds like rather than attack Jews for their advocacy for Jewish victims you should simply do a better job of advocating for yours.

    • Danuta

      Hundreds of thousands of Poles living in the east were interned in gulags between the wars by Stalin and – mostly Jewish – company. But of course, who cares ….

  • Many of the Jews fled from Russia to Poland and stayed there, till Hitler came and did all the horrible stuff he did. Poland accepted most of exiled Jews in their country. The relations might have been far from perfect, but they’ve foubd asylum there, till the beginning of second world war. Same thing happened with people that fled the germany because of nazis. Finaly , buidling nazi death camps in Poland was due to logistics. There were many Jews in Poland, so it was easier to get them to Poland for Holocaust than get them somewhere else from there. Its good people will get to know what happened in Russia in 1917.

    • Vlad

      What are you talking about? Jews lived in Poland for several centuries until the 40s, and then the Germans with the Poles and the Ukrainians began to destroy them, as in the concentration camps as well as outside. The Poles continued pogroms after the war

    • Julia

      LOGISTICS?! Are you kidding me? Sorry but NO, I suppose the Kielce, Jedwabne and many, many other pogroms (that means total destruction of a residential area, village or city and annihilation of the citizens, aka the Jews) was a logistical situation as well?! The Poles are quite famed for being enormous anti Semites! Poor poor Poles, yes we feel terrible that the Soviets kicked your asses after you sided with Hitler in almost every way.

    • daniel

      Polish anti semitism and murdering of Jews in pogroms dates to before WWII. See 1918-1919 for example of waves of pogroms

  • walt kovacs

    he is my distant cousin.

    now that he accepts that he is a jew, im gonna hit him up for a loan

    • Anne Fritz

      How Hungarian of you!
      So very racist , still.

  • Hinda Blas

    I do not believe in the show – especially with the Host. It’s been wrong before (quite a number of times). Sarah Jessica Parker, for example has, in the past stated that she is Jewish and remembers her very orthodox grandparents. On the show – she’s anything but Jewish based on “proof.”

    • CJD

      Sarah Jessica Parker was not on this show. She was on “Who Do You Think You Are?” Both shows, however, operate on the same premise. They do a bit of prep work and then they ask the celebrity which line they would like to focus on. SHE wanted to focus on her MOTHER’S line because she knew very little about her people. Her father was the Jew, and she was very well acquainted with his family tree. They weren’t wrong, they just focused on another side of her genealogy.

  • Ari

    Dont care for Dustin Hoffman. What has he ever done? Did he protest for Soviet refusniks? Has he ever confronted the BDS? Has he ever spoken on a college campus to support Israel? Has he ever attended a demo in support of Israel? Has he ever condemned Palestinian terrorism? In sum, he’s a has-been actor who’s done nothing of value to help his own. He can take his fake tears and cry me a river and can gey cocken offen yam!

    • Ava

      My dear Ari, Who are we to judge? HaShem is all forgiving and gives us so many opportunities for us to perform teshuva. I am very happy for Mr. Hoffman that he has found himself. Each of us has our own tikkune. Please remember that before you judge others.

      • Eva

        Thank you for your reply to Ari – All the challenges and questions Ari asks don’t matter in light of Mr. Hoffman’s simple revelation of who he is. I too am here for the survival of a family, my father’s first wife and 5 children killed in concentration camp, my mother’s first husband evolved to suicide and all from both sides of great professional accomplishments, father’s side non-kosher butchers for all in Hamburg and mother’s side very successful men’s underwear factory – both businesses were destroyed along with all family belongings. Yet to Mr. Hoffman I say I am happy for you.

    • BK

      You’re an idiot.

    • Franklin Odel

      Here’s Ari the Jew attacking Dustin the Jew for not being Jewish enough. I’ve seen enough of this to recognize an Orthodox attacking a left leaning secular Jew for being a JINO — no doubt Ari will call Dustin a self-hating Jew. I call Ari an anti-Semite.

    • CJD

      I am sorry you feel this way. As he explains in the episode he was not given any grounding by his parents in what it meant to be Jewish. It’s something he’s discovering as an adult. What has Hoffman done? He’s used his celebrity a great deal on behalf of people with AIDS/HIV, Children, Cancer, Education, and world peace. This show may spur him on to do things for Jewish Charities. Be careful about judging others.

    • Rick Gutierrez

      Ari your ignorance is astonishing. Your anger over whelming. For start just by Dustin being an American he supports Israel. It’s our tax move which keeps the poor leadership and the apartheid in full force in Israel. So before you start judging people for no reason , get your facts. People are tired of supporting a country that cannot lead itself into the future.

      • Ari

        Hey Ricky, there’s an old Spanish expression. Kish mir in tuchas aran. Google it and get back to me when you’ve translated

    • Aaron Rose

      You’re a disgrace to our faith Ari.

    • Dale K

      Here’s the thing he did, Ari – he owned his Jewishness. With so many Jews keeping quiet in the face of adversity, he owned his Jewishness. His in-your-face I’m a Jew … could you not feel his anger, his sorrow?? Let it be enough. The importance lies in what one does… not what isn’t done. Expectations always leaves one wanting.

  • Better late than never, but this certainly appears to be Mr. Hoffman’s “aha!” moment. Stay tuned to see he acts any differently. If he does, it will be the role of his Jewish lifetime.

    • Anshel Moscowitz

      Sorry Franklin, you are JINO, like 70% of the American Jews who vote for democrats

      • Lindsay

        Wow, that’s sad. People really use the word “JINO”? My grandmother was the first woman president of an Orthodox shul, and she always said that as far as she was concerned, Jews are Jews. Leave the “INO”s to the politicians, please. Hitler and those who perpetrated the pogroms did not care about a Jew’s politics. Anyone who was Jewish enough to be murdered for being Jewish is Jewish enough for me.

  • glenda urmacher

    My husband was in a Russian concentration camp as a child as well,and his mother died there leaving him, and his sister Ruth 4. His father had a pregnant girlfriend, who din’t want his children, and so it it a miracle, Uri & his sister survived thanks to partisans, who took orphans through Europe to Israel.
    Uri & his sister were 2 of the children on Exodus 47.
    Thank God for the State of Israel who gave children like Uri a home, a family ( when his own didn’t care for him, and an education.
    I would like this organization to find out what were my my mother in law, Chaya Rifka Applebaum-Urmacher. last days, and where she is buried.
    That would be so wonderful!

  • Pamela

    Being being for or against the State of Israel or its current leadership has nothing to do with being Jewish. Politics does not equal heritage or religious preferences. Many Jews are not fans of Israel, as many Christians think it is a great idea with excellent governmental policies.

  • NuritG

    I made a sarcastic remark on this episode, “Dustin Hoffman feels the Jew in him”…ohpuleez!!! Hoffman has been an antagonist of Israel for years!

  • mr hoffman i have a free english -hebrew prayerbook for you
    jeff in jerusalem

  • mr hoffman i have a free english -hebrew prayerbook for you
    how can i get it to you jeff in jerusalem

  • Marty

    Jonah 1:9 I am a Hebrew

  • Isaac brajtman

    Was he crying because his grandmother was in a concentration camp, or because she was Jewish ?
    He has never come out in defence of the Jewish country ,Israel, and like many other “Jews” has very leftist views on Israel.

  • I feel sad but yet happy he found his roots. I wish I could bebso lucky.

    • Tomas Siuipys

      Jean, your last name is Lithuanian, 100%

  • Markus Elkana Bajtman

    Dustin Hoffman once said that “Israel was a mistake”

    He seems to be one of those Jews who hate being a Jew

    Maybe he should cry because of his “hatred” of Israel

    • daniel

      Most sane jews do not defend the state Israel, the two have nothing to do with eachother. I am ashamed what is done by the state of Israel in the name of jews.

      • Khaildi

        Yes, as a self-hating Jew of course you would be ashamed of Israel while supporting every Muslim terror entity around it. Why not stick a gun in your mouth too? Because the same result would occur if you wandered into the lands of your heroes, the Muslims. Dhimmi moron.

      • stewart

        Daniel, how sad that you remain ignorant of history.

      • Arthur Cohn

        You are ignorant!
        Israel has bent over backwards to accomadate the Arabs living in Eretz Yisrael It is the Arabs who have refused to ecognize the rights of Jews to their ancestral land that is the cause of the turmoil.

      • Michael

        Daniel–the state of Israel is a Jewish state and that is exactly how it was created in at inception in 1948. It is our only Jewish homeland and safe haven for Jews around the globe. You should recognize the two being one in the same. I hope you’ll never need to find a safer place but always know Israel will welcome you with open arms.

    • cs

      hey – let up
      he was crying because HE FINALLY GETS IT you can’t actually blame him. he was brought up by parents ashamed of their Jewishness as it says …”Hoffman’s Jewish heritage, which his parents kept a secret”


      Isaac, why be so negative…. think it is very overwhelming the knowledge he learned. He probably was having a bit of difficulty understanding why his parents kept it a secret. And perhaps kindness, and a more understanding of heritage will get him to Israel and thus provide him with knowledge. Being as you are, won’t. It doesn’t interest me other than to try and teach you the same way he needs. So be kinder, be warmer, so people want to be near you, and be Jewish. He is not like other “lefty” jews you are referring to. One is ignorant till they learn, when they learn and are still behave just so, they are stupid. Give the guy time to swallow his reality and nurture his soul. Its not an overnight thing, next he will take a roots trip, probably to where is Grandparents came from and then to Israel… and then comes the next steps. Lighten up!

      • Julia

        So well said Shaine, would that more people thought and spoke like you do.


      Oh my, the batman are the other side of extremist haters. Everyone once did whatever. Let him take his knowledge and swallow it. What seems to be and what is are often very different. You embarrass me the two of you, you embarrass me for being Jewish! Now stop the hatred and go work on your midos and do some teshuva. For the record, am no left wing anything, just a lot kinder than you! People who do what you just did, or the opposite like Daniel, whom I just see below, are so selfish, this is not about that, its about a man, learning about his past, thats all…. most sane Jews do defend israel, Daniel, and no one is stopping you from a)not being jewish and b)not visiting c)boycotting all things israeli (please do, like get off of your pc now or act civil.). Shame on all of you for taking things out of context and making it about your mean ugly selfish selves, and extremist notions. Get humble, get kind.

  • Michal Pasch-Nadjar

    This lady is a real hero, that she survived this camp and could flee. I am Jewish and all I can say is that my mother survived the Holocaust and I am very very proud to be Jewish.

    God bless the Jews

  • erik keller

    Hoffman is an excellent actor!

  • Letty Bromenschenkel


    her husband and son were killed

    how did she become Dustin’s great grandmother ?

    no logic to this story or claim .

    • Yonatan

      They didn’t mention if she had other children who were not killed, just the family members that were.

    • Edna

      My thoughts exactly!!

      His tears are real. This is no pretense.

      However, he should also logically conclude that “he is here” thanks to thanks to a strong Israel, and the election of right wing governments since its inception, and NOT to leftist elected governments!!!

    • Lisa Kauffman


      If you watched the episode, you would learn that Dustin’s father, Frank, left his father Sam, in Russia to come to the US…got married, had Dustin’s father…but went back to Russia to rescue Sam (his father). That is when he was killed by the Soviets.

      • Jean Hershberg

        Dustin’s GRANDFATHER left his parents in Russia, came to Chicago and had a family. When he learned of the trouble he rushed back to Russia but was imprisoned and disappeared…

    • Di Finzi

      many such people remarried and rebuilt families. True survivors in every sense!

    • Jennifer Trabin

      I’ve been trying to figure out the same thing. The only possibility is that her son had a child before he went to the camps (or at the camp) and the child survived.

    • K Burgheimer

      Her husband had been arrested by the Cheka when hearing this the son left America and returned to Russia to try to save his father only to be arrested himself by the Cheka. Both of them were executed.

    • Dimitri

      Such an idiocy from the very beginning. The Jews were the driving force behind the Russian Revolution, there was no thing as concentration camps for the jews in post-revolution Russia. The story itself is a fake. Anyone bothers to question how exactly all this information and details were extracted from an elderly woman described as senile?
      Freaking soap opera!

      • NiceJewishlady

        How do you think the revolution happened? The haves did not willingly give up everything to the have nots and the radicals. In my great grandmother’s family, 7 out of 8 children wanted to keep their wealthy farm and one kid was a communist. Communist revolutionaries did a lot to impose their vision on average people. Jews were not a monolith on this issue and guess what happens when you don’t want to go along with any peoples revolution

  • Ike

    I am a Jew

  • SteveHC

    Very nice of Mr. Hoffman to be willing and interested in participating in the program.
    It’s always wonderful to see when someone truly “gets it” – and obviously Mr. Hoffman gets it.

  • stevenl

    Where does Dustin stand as far as Israel is concerned?

  • Diana Osborne

    Wow. This is so powerful. This is an Awesome love story. What a blessing and a hero. Praying for you and your family for God’s protection over all of you !!! Praying for God’s peace for Jerusalem !!! Praying for God’s peace for you and your family. May God give you His love, joy, and peace. Love and prayers, Diana Osborne