The ultimate insult is to call someone a “jack-booted thug.” Last night, as I was watching a re-run of the Seinfeld TV show, I heard Kramer tell Jerry Seinfeld that mail carriers who had delivered unwanted Pottery Barn catalogs to his mail box were “jack-booted thugs.” Jerry didn’t ask Kramer what he meant by that term; as everyone knows, “jack-booted thugs” is a reference to the Nazis, who were the worst! The worst, Jerry, the worst! But were the Nazis bad because they wore Jack boots, or are jack boots bad because the Nazis wore them? (more…)
August 31, 2010
One of the remaining brick buildings at Auschwitz II, also known as Birkenau, is called “the Sauna.” I walked past this building on my first trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1998 and I wondered why the building was closed. The Sauna had been closed to tourists during all the years since the camp was liberated by the Soviet Union on January 27, 1945. My tour guide told me that this beautiful brick building was where the Jews, who had been selected to work, took a shower and were given uniforms. The building seemed too big for just a shower room, and I wondered why it was called “the Sauna.” I assumed that the name was a Nazi joke, and it was coined because the water in the shower was so hot that it created steam, like in a steam room, which we call a Sauna.
The Nazis had named this building “die zentrale Sauna.” (the central Sauna) The CENTRAL Sauna? How many Saunas did they have? The Nazis were always making cruel, insensitive jokes — like putting up a sign that read “Arbeit Macht Frei” over the gate into a death camp where the only way out was “through the chimney.”
When I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau again in 2005, the Sauna building was open to tourists and I finally learned why the building was called “die zentrale Sauna.” This was the largest building where the clothing of the prisoners was disinfected in steam chambers; there were other smaller disinfection buildings, which also used steam and hot air chambers, as well as Zyklon-B poison gas to disinfect the clothing.
The Sauna building is shaped like the capital letter I and the two sides of it are mirror images. The center part of the Sauna building has two long hallways. Steam chambers are located against the wall that divides the hallways; on each side of the wall are doors into the chambers. The clothing was put in on one side, and after it was steamed, it was taken out on the other side.
The steam chambers were manufactured by the Topf company, which also provided the crematory ovens at Birkenau and other Nazi concentration camps. At the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, the Soviet Union charged the Nazi war criminals with killing Jews with steam at the Treblinka death camp. The clothing at the Theresienstadt ghetto was de-loused with steam.
The central Sauna at Birkenau is located directly across the road from where a group of wooden warehouse buildings used to stand. The prisoners called the warehouse section “Canada” because of all the riches that could be found there. This was where the clothing of the Jews was sorted and packed for shipment to Germany. During World War II, factories in Germany concentrated on making uniforms for the soldiers and civilian clothing was in short supply.
Back in the old days, when people used to go to a health spa, there was no steam room or Sauna. Instead, people sat inside a steam chamber (sauna) with their head sticking out of the top of the chamber, which resembled those in the photo above, except they were square and made out of heavy cloth.
The shower room, shown in the photo below, is located in the part of the building that is closest to the road. The prisoners were not given towels after their shower; they had to stand in the shower room, which had floor-to-ceiling windows, until they were dry. Notice that the shower heads have been removed from the shower room.
Visitors must walk on a glass floor that has been installed in the Sauna building, so as to preserve the original concrete floors. A railing, which can be seen on the right-hand side in the photo above, prevents visitors from walking on the floor of the shower room. The photo on the wall in the background shows a group of women prisoners in the shower room. The shower room is surprisingly small, considering that this is such a huge building.
After their shower, the incoming women prisoners would be given clothing that had been taken from the victims who had arrived on a previous transport. This clothing had been deloused in the steam chambers in the building and most of the dresses had suffered damage from the hot steam. As a result, the women prisoners were typically dressed in tattered clothing. Only a few of the women prisoners were given a uniform to wear.
The two photos below show original signs on the wall which can still be seen in the Sauna building. The first sign says “Desinfizierte Wäsche.” Before their shower, the prisoners had to first be submerged into a tub of disinfectant to kill any germs or lice on their bodies. The second sign says “Brausen” which means Showers in English. The yellow and black stripes alert visitors that the doorway is very low.
The incoming prisoners entered the Sauna building through a door located at the northern end of the building, the same door that tourists now enter. Inside this door is a huge waiting room where the new prisoners were first registered and then told to undress. Then they were herded naked down the long hallway in the center of the building, where you can see the steam chambers on each side. There are also a few hot air chambers.
At the end of the hallway was a small room where the women had all their body hair shaved off by male barbers while the SS men assigned to this building watched. This was an effort to control lice which hides in body hair. The barbers also shaved the men’s hair in this room, according to a sign in the building.
After having all their hair cut off, the prisoners proceeded into the next room, called the Untersuchungsraum. This was where they had to undergo a humiliating search of all their body cavities by an SS man. The search was for hidden diamonds or gold which some of the victims tried to smuggle into the camp, thinking that they could buy more favorable treatment. From this room, the prisoners proceeded to the disinfection tubs which were right next to the shower room.
After their shower, the victims then entered another hallway that was on the other side of the hallway where they had entered. At the end of this hallway was another large waiting room. On the north side of the waiting room was a little room where the women were given their prisoner clothing. On the south side of the waiting room was the room where the men received their new clothing. The prisoners then exited the building through two doors which were on the east side of the south wing of the building.
According to Elizabeth Mann, an Auschwitz survivor who spoke to visitors at the Museum of Tolerance in the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, when I visited, the female prisoners at Birkenau were given a shower periodically in the Sauna, but they never knew whether gas or water would come out. According to Ms. Mann, prisoners were sometimes gassed in the shower room of the Sauna.
The Sauna building now has a display of photos that were found in the suitcases of the incoming prisoners and saved by the Nazis.
In the photo above, the photos on the display board and the windows on the right hand side, are reflected in the glass floor of the building.
All the photos in this post are copyrighted by scrapbookpages.com and are not in the public domain.
August 30, 2010
This morning I read on a blog that there are only four Nazi gas chambers still in existence in all of Europe. It took me a minute to think of which four this blogger might be referring to. It is universally accepted by historians that there were six extermination camps where Jews were gassed during the Holocaust: Auschwitz-Birkenau, Majdanek, Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka. The gas chambers at Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka were destroyed more than 65 years ago and nothing remains of them. Three of the four gas chambers at Birkenau were destroyed by the Nazis in January 1945 and one was destroyed by the prisoners in October 1944.
There were also gas chambers at Mauthausen, Dachau, Sachsenhausen, Ravensbrück and Stutthof. The original gas chambers at Mauthausen, Dachau and Stutthof are still there, as are the four original gas chambers in Building No. 41 at Majdanek. There are also reconstructed gas chambers at Majdanek and the main Auschwitz camp. One of the euthanasia gas chambers, the one at Hartheim Castle, was also used to gas concentration camp prisoners from Dachau and Mauthausen. There is a building located a mile from the Natzweiler camp, which is alleged to have been a gas chamber where 86 Jews from Auschwitz were brought to be killed; you can read about it on another blog post that I wrote.
I have visited and photographed five of the remaining gas chambers in Europe at Auschwitz, Majdanek, Dachau, Mauthausen and Hartheim. I also visited the site of “the little white house” which was used at Birkenau before the four large gas chambers were built. The location of “the little red house,” which was the first gas chamber at Birkenau is unknown.
You can read all about “the little white house” here.
The floor of the Sachsenhausen gas chamber is shown in the photo above. The gas chamber was disguised as a shower room with one floor drain. In the background, you can see the ruins of the cremation ovens. You can read about the Sachsenhausen gas chamber here.
August 27, 2010
There seems to be a popular belief that it was proven at the Doctors Trial at Nuremberg in 1947 that experiments were done on the gassing of human beings at Dachau. Allegedly this information can be found in the book entitled The Nazi Doctors: medical killing and the psychology of genocide by Robert Jay Lifton. (His name is sometimes incorrectly spelled Lipton.)
You can read all about the Doctors Trial here. The charges against the doctors are listed, but there were no charges against any of the doctors for doing experiments involving gassing human beings with Zyklon-B poison gas.
I have read on other blogs about alleged experiments done in the gas chamber at Dachau. For example, this quote from a blog:
Although never used for mass killings, one of the chambers was used for human medical research as well as the murders of select prisoners.
Lifton did not mention any gassing experiments in his book. There was no evidence presented at the Doctors Trial that “the Nazi doctors sent people to gas chambers,” as another blogger wrote. Nor were there any courts that “convicted Nazis after reviewing the evidence of gassing in numerous camps.” None of the SS men at Dachau were ever prosecuted on a charge of killing prisoners in the gas chamber at Dachau.
The book The Nazi Doctors is online and anyone can search the book for the words Dachau or gas chambers and learn that this book does not say anything about prisoners being gassed at Dachau. Nevertheless, tour guides at Dachau tell visitors that the gas chamber at Dachau was used a few times for gassing experiments.
You can watch a video about the Doctors Trial here.
August 25, 2010
On August 19, 2010 Glenn Beck gave a lesson on slavery in America on his TV show on Fox News. You can hear what he said on his Fox News web site here. It’s been almost a week since I watched this segment of his show, but I can’t get it out of my mind. Glenn Beck has to be Politically Correct on his show if he wants to stay on TV, so I’ll have to tell you the rest of the story, the part that he left out. (more…)
On Sunday, Aug 22, 2010, at the Comedy and Magic Club in Hermosa Beach, California, Leno told a tasteless joke about actor Mel Gibson. (more…)
August 23, 2010
A few years ago, I was accused of being a Holocaust denier because I wrote in an e-mail that I think the floor drains in the Dachau gas chamber are real drains. My private e-mail was published on a blog without my permission, but when I objected, the blog post with my e-mail was removed.
According to the Holocaust experts, the drains in the gas chamber at Dachau cannot be real drains, that are connected to the sewer system, because that would mean that the Dachau gas chamber is actually a shower room. Poison gas cannot be allowed to get into the sewer system because it would poison everyone in the vicinity; for this reason, the floor drains for the disinfection chambers at Dachau are outside the chambers and the poison pellets are poured into a wire basket so they will not get on the floor. Visitors to Dachau today are not allowed to go into the basement to see if there are drain pipes connected to the drains in the gas chamber, so my opinion about the drains in the Dachau gas chamber, which are now closed up, is pure speculation.
Notice that the alleged fake drain in the Dachau gas chamber was manufactured by the same company that made the real drain that is outside the disinfection chambers. Is there a document somewhere that proves that the Nazis ordered six fake drains from the manufacturer and specified that the drain holes should be closed up? Not that I know of. Maybe someone modified six real drains and closed the holes so that the poison gas could not go down the drain into the sewer system and poison the whole camp. The two drains in the morgue room have to be real because it was necessary to clean up the mess made by the dead bodies stacked inside the room; this means that there is a sewer pipe underneath the Baracke X building where the gas chamber is located.
If the drains in the Dachau gas chamber are fake drains, designed to fool the unsuspecting victims, why use 6 drains? That is a total waste of money and involves a lot of unnecessary work. Only one fake drain would be needed to fool the victims into thinking that the gas chamber is a shower room.
The photo above shows one of the small windows for pouring Zyklon-B pellets into the Dachau gas chamber. On the ceiling are the empty holes where showerheads used to be and a square vent. On the wall, near the ceiling, are light fixture boxes which the American film, shown at the Nuremberg IMT, says were used to vent gas from the chamber. As seen today, the Dachau gas chamber has two ways to input the gas: through bins on the outside wall or through the shower heads. There are two ways to vent the gas: through the vent in the ceiling or through the empty light fixture boxes.
Two of the floor drains are about four feet from the windows on the east wall where the Zyklon-B pellets “could be poured in” according to a sign in the undressing room at Dachau. The prisoners would have had plenty of time to sweep the pellets down the drain with their hands before the poison gas fumes were released, so the drains can’t be real, according to the Holocaust experts.
Have you ever seen the “Soup Nazi” episode on the Seinfeld TV show? The owner of a small soup restaurant in New York is called the “Soup Nazi” because he insists that customers do everything the right way. If the customers don’t do everything just right, the “Soup Nazi” says “No soup for you!” That’s the way the real Nazis were; everything had to be done just right. No wasting of time, money and materials, by putting in 6 fake drains when one would have been enough. The Seinfeld show, which is about “nothing” had many jokes about the Holocaust including a spoof about the last scene in Schindler’s List which was way over the top. Too bad that the Seinfeld show is now over; the argument about the floor drains at Dachau would have made a good episode.
I read a blog post written by a student who has studied the Holocaust since elementary school and finally got to see Dachau. The student wrote this in the blog post:
The adjoining room was labeled the “shower room.” The prisoners were told they were going to get a shower, but once they were locked in the room, they were all gassed.
This student became very emotional when standing in the gas chamber, according to the blog post, but in all the times that I have visited Dachau and have stood in the gas chamber, I did not become emotional. There must be something wrong with me. While I was standing in the gas chamber the last time that I visited Dachau, I was too busy looking around at the shower heads and noticing that they were not evenly spaced on the ceiling and that the one remaining shower head did not hang down from the ceiling. (All of the shower heads have now been stolen as souvenirs.)
I know that the gas that was used at Dachau was not liquid or invisible vapor, but rather was in the form of Zyklon-B pellets that are about the size of peas; the pellets could not have been put through the shower heads. The shower heads were put in the gas chamber in order to fool the victims into thinking that the gas chamber was a shower room, so why weren’t they spaced evenly? The spacing of the shower heads looked suspicious to me. I think that the uneven spacing is due to the vent being put in AFTER the shower heads were installed.
The following quote is from The Harrowing of Hell, a book written by Captain Marcus J. Smith, a US Army medical doctor with DP Team 115, who arrived at Dachau on April 30, 1945:
“They stood beneath innocent-looking shower heads, evenly spaced on the ceiling; from them the invisible lethal gas (carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide) flowed for ten to twenty minutes. I noticed a thick glass window on the rear of the chamber: I am told that through the window a supervisor witnessed the executions so that he could decontaminate when they were over.”
Contrary to the description above, written by a medical doctor with the US Army, who saw the gas chamber the day after the camp was liberated, the holes for the fake shower heads are not “evenly spaced.” There are three rows of ceiling holes in the gas chamber today. On the north side of the ceiling, there are three holes on the left side, then two ceiling vents with one hole between them on the right side. In the middle row, there are 6 holes and in the row near the south wall, there are 5 holes, making a total of 15 randomly-spaced holes for the fake shower nozzles.
Were the shower heads changed sometime after this army doctor saw the gas chamber on April 30, 1945? Was the whole ceiling lowered so that the water pipes were hidden? Was the peephole used to see which water pipes to open because all three water pipes did not need to flow if there were only a few prisoners taking a shower under one row of shower heads?
A group of US Congressmen visited Dachau on May 1, 1945 and in their report, they described the gas chamber as having a 10-foot ceiling with pipes on the ceiling. The two rooms on either side of the gas chamber both have 10-foot ceilings. On May 3, 1945, when a film of the gas chamber was made, the ceiling was 7.6 feet high and there were no pipes visible. Were there some changes made to the gas chamber between April 30, 1945 and May 3, 1945? The film that was made on May 3, 1945 was shown at the Nuremberg IMT as proof that prisoners were gassed at Dachau.
The one remaining shower head in the Dachau gas chamber in 2003 was made of sheet metal and it looked like the head from a large garden sprinkler can. It was approximately five inches in diameter, and was set flush with the ceiling in a hole that was about 4 or 5 inches deep into the ceiling. By looking into the empty holes on the ceiling today, one can see that these fake shower heads in the gas chamber were not connected to any pipes. The one remaining shower head had been dented, as though someone had punched it with his fist.
The photo above shows what a real shower room looked like at Dachau. Notice the shower heads are evenly spaced and hanging down from the pipes. This photo was taken in the administration building which has been converted into a Museum at Dachau. The pipes and shower heads have been removed. Were the real pipes and shower heads removed so that visitors will not think for themselves, but will just let emotion overcome them when they stand in the gas chamber which is disguised as a shower room?
A headline in the news today reads:
American writer JP Bellinger dose (sic) not rule out the the involvement of Israeli spy agency, Mossad, in the tragic death of a Polish historian, who was researching on the Holocaust.
Dariusz Ratajczak, a former professor at the University of Opole, was found dead in a car parked near a shopping center in Opole on June 11, 2010. You can read the rest of the news article here.
J.P. Bellinger is the guy who famously wrote a book about Heinrich Himmler being murdered by the British, who then claimed that Himmler had committed suicide. The death of Holocaust denier Dariusz Ratajczak was also called a suicide, but the fact that his body was found in a parked car two weeks after his death aroused suspicion because he had not died in the car, according to Bellinger.
J.P. Bellinger’s book about the death of Heinrich Himmler is in German, but there is an article written by him in English, which you can read here. WARNING: Bellinger’s article about Himmler is on the codoh.com web site and Bellinger is a “revisionist.” Holocaust denial, aka revisionism, can get you 5 years in prison, and it can also get you killed. If you think your computer might be impounded in an investigation of you for Holocaust denial in the future, you should go to a public library to access Bellinger’s article.
August 22, 2010
I am finally feeling well enough to wade through a long blog post accusing me of being a Holocaust denier and answer the accusations; you can read the accusations on Paolosilv’s blog post here. The long, tedious post on Paolosilv’s Blog reminds me of the Seinfeld show, which I watch in re-runs every evening. The Seinfeld show is famously about “nothing” and it includes many long conversations in which the members of the cast argue about something that is very insignificant. I don’t have the time or the motivation to address all the points brought up on the Holocaust denier accusation blog post, but there is one point which I believe should be cleared up: the reason for the death marches out of the Nazi camps near the end of World War II. (more…)
This morning I read a blog post which told all about what a visitor learned on a recent tour of Dachau. The first thing that caught my attention was this comment about the Arbeit Macht Frei gate: “About the gate, the original was destroyed by the Americans getting in so a new replica was made for the memorial.” (more…)