INT: ... Continuation of the interview with Doctor Bela Kiraly ... You were of course in the army in nineteen forty four, and the prospect of a Soviet invasion of Hungary then, by then was very very real, what was your feeling about this?

BK: A prospect! We were already invaded! Look, I had tremendous luck in my life. Nineteen forty four when France already fell, the Low Countries were already under Hitler. That is exactly when we started our education in ... ... academy. And our professor of air tactics was a general staff colonel. His name was ... but he was a Hungarian general staff officer, and one day, you know, at the general staff training seemed to be for some a little bit too civilian, you know there was no barrack spirit there, it was a scholarly institute. We could talk to our teachers like colleagues, almost, you know, we were ... all officers, first lieutenant, ... colonels, and once a classmate of mine get up and told Colonel ... , I have here an interesting interview in the liberal paper which still exists in Hungary, Magyar Gazette about an Italian contingent on the ... canal, can I read it? And I would like to have your reflection on it, he said, go ahead. And he read that he was the reporter on the canal and interviewed an Italian air force lieutenant general who was the commander of the air corps that Mussolini sent to the canal not to be left out of the defeat of ... you know. And the reporter asked me, how is the war going, general? ... Look, Britain is defeated, and the question is, when will Churchill recognise the defeat, put up the white flag, and then we will talk about peace, but practically war is over. That was the Battle of Britain, when the Germans and some Italians, mostly Germans, were bombarding London, parts of Britain, then I never forget the fact of this Hungarian journalist staff officer, a bitter smile, grin on his face, and he says not a word, ... he says that, I am everyday when I leave the Academy, I go to general staff and read the daily report of the Hungarian air attaché in Britain. And according to it, the Germans suffer immense losses over Britain, the British pilot if shot down most could escape by parachute, if German is shot down and survive, will be prisoner of war. Hitler loses the best trained pilots and air men, they try to supply and still they could supply the material losses, because they turned ... factories into airplane factories, but they can't supply enough manpower, and enough particular trained, it is a complicated thing, the bombardment, they lose the trained men. Because they did not use the added term 'Battle of Britain' the whole air attack against Britain will peter out, in weeks or months, nobody knows precisely. And now he told, and if the Germans can't knock Britain out now, it is very questionable whether they will be able to win the war, because American can come in, etcetera. Nineteen forty, October in the Hungarian general staff school, from this moment my brain was always influenced with, and then came another dramatic thing in nineteen forty two, when the Hungarian army was on the Don. And then we just were graduating seniors in the general staff school, and we were sent to study war, on this part. We used to say, smell gunpowder, you know. And then we came back, we were for three months in division army corps, army headquarters to see the whole army how it is operate in practice. We were surplus, we were not in responsible positions, we are so to say, observers. Here and there, we got into the battle anyway and then they, we got, but we were there observers, students, studying war. When we came back, we got a super secret envelope which we had to give back within forty eighty hours, and it came from the Chief of General Staff, which was Colonel General ... ... at that time. It was a fantastic document. The title of it was, 'The maritime powers strategy' - the maritime powers strategy. Basically, the study, it was a twenty, thirty page study, under the name of Chief of General Staff, printed 'Super Secret' which now stated that the maritime power won the war, nineteen forty two, September again, just two years after the first tremendous impression. In

INT: You were in gaol at the time of Stalin's death. What happened in terms of conditions, when ...

BK: Ah, first of all, you have to know that being in death row, I was arrested in 'fifty one, August, I was condemned in 'fifty two, February, and I was still in the death row in 'fifty three when in March Stalin died. Next day we knew it. You knew it, by we saw a black flag on the building. And then, from my left, there came a Morse message on the wall. (Tap, tap, tap). Make out S-t-a-l-i-n, S-t-a-l-i-n- -i-s- d-e-a-d. But a letter was missing in the Hungarian ... ... died, an age was missing, so that I knocked back 'd-o- I -u-n-d-e-r-s-t-a-n-d S-t-a-l-i-n -d-i-e-d? Y-e-s -y-o-u -u-n-d-e-r-s-t-o-o-d, Stalin is dead. I very happily continued on the other wall, I knew that someone was in it, never answered, there were several messages which stopped in my cell, because the next guy either did not know how the Morse operated, or did not dare to be, probably even believed that there is some kind of trap, or something. On my right, I never got an answer, but from the left, message came, that was ... and within a few days the guards began to be more polite, no, not more polite, they were not polite at all, so that they began to be polite and finally one began to make friendship with me and brought me newspapers and stood in the door, and told, if I knock you slip it out, you know, instantly, because both of us will go to somewhere. In other words, the behaviour. And then within half a year all the prison guards stayed, but they changed uniform, which meant that they were transferred from the ... police hierarchy to the normal civilian prison guard system. In other words, a sign showed the treatment began, began to be very different. Visits began to be allowed. I never got a visit until nineteen fifty five. That was the first visit. We were totally separate from the world. No letter, no visit, nothing. That is how, this ... message, and then some guards changed behaviour, told us ... and then we heard the first speech of ... I don't know how was it, but there was a loudspeaker put up somewhere, whether it was a prison operation, or whether it was outside, only came in to us, I don't know, but we heard Imre Nagy's installation as Prime Minister in June, and his inaugural address we heard. So that we knew that there is a new world coming, definitely the signs were there, we were transferred from the death row to the otbuilding, where the long range political prisoners were, but still separated, we were called, 'TheGhetto' which was separated from the rest. And then we heard that every week a lot of prisoners were released, but mostly former Communists, you know, who were imprisoned by their own former comrades, you know. So it's really the massive release of non-Communists came, not from the prisons, but the, in concentration camps were dissolved, which were full with non-Communists, you know. Communist prisoners were released, but not Communist prisoners, very few, ... until nineteen fifty six, where, before the revolution there were the massive release, I was released in September in this final release of political prisoners.

INT: Thank you very much Dr Bela Kiraly.

BK: It was a pleasure, thank you for visit, here in the forest.