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the Final Solution & the Massacres of the Jews

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Author Topic: the Final Solution & the Massacres of the Jews  (Read 973 times)
Sarah
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« on: February 09, 2007, 10:40:20 pm »

Operation of the camps
 
Majdanek - crematorium The method of killing at these camps was by poison gas, usually in "gas chambers", although many prisoners were killed in mass shootings and by other means. The bodies of those killed were destroyed in crematoria (except at Sobibór where they were cremated on outdoor pyres), and the ashes buried or scattered.


The camps differed slightly in operation, but all were designed to kill as efficiently as possible. SS Lt. Kurt Gerstein, who worked in the SS medical service, for example, testified to a Swedish diplomat during the war about what he had seen at the camps. He describes how he arrived at Belzec on August 19, 1942 (at the time, the camp was still using primarily carbon monoxide from a gas engine in its gas chambers), where he was proudly shown the unloading of 45 train cars stuffed with 6700 Jews, many of whom were already dead, but the rest were marched naked to the gas chambers, where, he said:

Unterscharführer Hackenholt was making great efforts to get the engine running. But it doesn't go. Captain Wirth comes up. I can see he is afraid because I am present at a disaster. Yes, I see it all and I wait. My stopwatch showed it all, 50 minutes, 70 minutes, and the diesel did not start. The people wait inside the gas chambers. In vain. They can be heard weeping, "like in the synagogue," says Professor Pfannenstiel, his eyes glued to a window in the wooden door. Furious, Captain Wirth lashes the Ukrainian assisting Hackenholt twelve, thirteen times, in the face. After 2 hours and 49 minutes - the stopwatch recorded it all - the diesel started. Up to that moment, the people shut up in those four crowded chambers were still alive, four times 750 persons in four times 45 cubic meters. Another 25 minutes elapsed. Many were already dead, that could be seen through the small window because an electric lamp inside lit up the chamber for a few moments. After 28 minutes, only a few were still alive. Finally, after 32 minutes, all were dead...Dentists hammered out gold teeth, bridges and crowns. In the midst of them stood Captain Wirth. He was in his element, and showing me a large can full of teeth, he said: "See for yourself the weight of that gold! It's only from yesterday and the day before. You can't imagine what we find every day - dollars, diamonds, gold. You'll see for yourself!"
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