My comments regarding this post on Jlue’s Weblog which I am re-blogging:
I used to be a great admirer of Dwight D. Eisenhower; he was the first president that I ever voted for. I wore my “I Like Ike” button proudly and I had not one, but two, Eisenhower jackets.
A new book entitled “Time of An Ordeal: The Story of Polish Clergy Imprisoned and Killed at Dachau” by Kazimierz Majdanski, archbishop emeritus of Warsaw, has just been published.
Yesterday I watched the movie “Thirteen Days” on TV. It is about the 13 days of the Cuban missile crisis in October 1962. There were several scenes in which Jack Kennedy and the men in his cabinet were shown as they spoke to the press. I noticed that at least 75% of the photographers were using a Speed Graphic, which was THE press camera up until the 1970s. Every movie that is set in the era between 1920 and 1970 will show press photographers using these cameras.
Cafe Teufelhart in Dachau, May 2001
I took this photo in May 2001 when I stayed in the town of Dachau for a week. One of my favorite places in Dachau was the Cafe Teufelhart. You can see a recent photo of how the place looks now, with a sign on the roof that reads “Cafe Bubu,” on this web site.
A book entitled “Kiyo’s Story: A Japanese-American Family’s Quest for the American Dream: A Memoir” by Kiyo Sato won the William Soroyan International prize for non-fiction in 2008. It is the story of a young Japanese-American girl living on a strawberry farm near Sacramento, CA. The first part of the book tells about her idyllic life in the 1920s and 1930s; just like every Holocaust survivor book I’ve ever read, Kiyo’s book begins with a description of her wonderful childhood in a loving family.
Robert “Brud” Monson was a 21-year-old pilot in the US Army Air Corps during World War II. His niece, Cheryl, gave a copy of a letter that he wrote to his family on September 18, 1945 to Harold Marcuse, who published it on his web site, which you can read here.
Yesterday I blogged about a Jewish American soldier, Irving Ross, who claimed to have taken a photo at Dachau, which was actually a photo taken at the Nordhausen sub-camp of Buchenwald after Nordhausen was bombed by American planes on April 3, 1945. The photo, which is shown below, was published in Life magazine in May 1945.
Prisoners at Nordhausen camp were killed by American bombs
Notice the body of a naked man in the foreground which seems out of place because all the other bodies have clothes on. It seems that this naked body was put there, with a little space between it and the next body, so that we can see how the Nazis starved the prisoners to death.
Irving Ross, a Jewish soldier who was with “the 109th Anti-Aircraft Battalion in North Africa and then with the 72nd Gun Battalion, attached to the 45th Division in the 3rd US Army,” told newspaper reporter Don Moore that his unit liberated Dachau on August 29, 1944. Don Moore’s article about Irving Ross on this blog has since been deleted.
Update, June 23, 2010, 8:43 a.m. This morning, I continued searching for information on the subject of the 72nd Gun Battalion after a reader commented that the 72nd was actually named the 72nd AAA Gun Battalion. I found a pdf file about Myron Greene who was with the 72nd. Greene was a dentist and he made 8mm films during World War II.
Here is a quote from Myron Greene on the pdf file which you can read here.
“On April 29, at 10 a.m., the 3rd Battalion of the
157th Regiment of the 45th Division found a
concentration camp. It was Dachau. What that
battalion encountered that day was so monstrous, it
took them only 10 minutes to take complete
control of the concentration camp. No words or
pictures can tell the story of Dachau. It was
certainly hell on Earth.
Because we had had our limited training in military
government, the 45th Division turned the
administration duties of the camp over to our
battalion at noon that day.”
It is true that the 3rd Battalion of the 157th Regiment of the 45th Division was the first to enter Dachau, but the Americans did not “take complete control of the concentration camp” until much later. The 45th Division entered the SS garrison that was next door to the concentration camp on the morning of April 29, 1945 and began shooting the SS men, but they did not reach the concentration camp itself until the afternoon of that day.
The 45th Division could not have turned the administration of the Dachau concentration camp over to the 72nd AAA Gun Battalion at noon on April 29th because the Dachau camp was not surrendered to the Americans until mid afternoon on April 29, 1945. The glaring errors in Dr. Myron Greene’s story makes me think that the administration of the Dachau camp was not turned over to the 72nd AAA Gun Battalion at all.
Nothing makes me more angry than reading a blog post that criticizes the German civilians who lived in the town of Dachau during the time that the concentration camp was in operation. It seems that every recent visitor to the Dachau Memorial site, who writes about his or her trip, mentions that the people in the town must have known what was going on, but they chose to ignore it. How come no one ever thinks that maybe the reason that the townspeople didn’t know about the atrocities in the camp is because these things never happened.
I’ve seen the crematorium at Dachau many times, but I didn’t realize until just yesterday that there are actually two sets of doors on the cremation ovens. An engineer e-mailed me and told me that the pulleys above the ovens were used to raise and lower the inner doors.
Pulley and counterweight was used to raise and lower inner door of oven at Dachau concentration camp