Scrapbookpages Blog

May 17, 2013

Another “liar, liar, pants on fire” Holocaust survivor story exposed as a fake

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 12:18 pm

I will soon be updating this page of my scrapbookpages.com website:

http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Buchenwald/JedemDasSeine.html

One of the photos that I included on that page of my website, several years ago, has been proven to be a fake.  It is not a photo of Jews who were mistreated at Buchenwald, but a photo of German Prisoners of War at Bad Nenndorf, a little known prison set up by the British in 1945 after World War II had ended.

Photo of German POWs at Bad Nenndorf Britrish prison

Photo of German POWs at Bad Nenndorf Britrish prison

Mel Gibson

Mel Gibson

The soldier on the far left in the photo looks a lot like Mel Gibson.  Maybe Mel can redeem himself by claiming that his Jewish father was tortured at Buchenwald.

The soldier, on the far right in the photo, looks very German to me, and he looks as if he is mad as hell, and not going to take it anymore.  That’s the way I feel, now that I have realized that I was duped by the daughter of a Holocaust survivor, who passed this photo off as a photo of her Jewish father, surrounded by ethnic Germans, who were allegedly prisoners at Buchenwald.

This text, which is on my website, will soon to changed to tell the truth behind the photo above:

The photo above was taken by an American Army photographer shortly after the camp was liberated. In the center of the photo is a Jewish prisoner who had gone into hiding when the Germans started to evacuate the camp, according to his daughter. He first hid in the typhus ward and later dug a hole near the infirmary barrack. He was too weak to stand when this photo was taken.

His daughter wrote in an e-mail to me that her father told her about “the American soldier who asked him to pose for a picture, because he was particularly emaciated compared to the other – political – prisoners. The photographer asked them to assume a serious expression, because he wanted to communicate what happened in the camps during the war.”

Note that the prisoner in the center of the photo is wearing thick socks. The concentration camp prisoners were not normally issued socks. These socks had formerly belonged to an SS guard in the camp.

The following is a quote from the e-mail letter sent to me by this prisoner’s daughter:

“When my father arrived in Buchenwald, he was slated to work in the quarry, in effect a protracted death sentence, when a Nazi Jeep drove by seeking building engineers. My father was a textile engineer, but decided to take the chance. He was lucky; his co-worker (they were building barracks) taught him on the job.

Towards the end of the war he would hide near the Germans’ cabin and listen to the newscasts, which told of the approaching American army. This motivated him to find whatever means possible to hold out in the camp and avoid further deportation. I already wrote you how he hid: first by hiding in the typhus ward, then by digging a cave.”

I should have known that something was wrong when a woman [whose name I have forgotten] wrote in an e-mail to me that her father told her about “the American soldier who asked him to pose for a picture, because he was particularly emaciated compared to the other – political – prisoners. The photographer asked them to assume a serious expression, because he wanted to communicate what happened in the camps during the war.”

Famous photo taken at Buchenwald has an Army Signal Corp number on the bottom

Famous photo taken at Buchenwald has an Army Signal Corp number on the bottom

American soldiers were not allowed to carry cameras in World War II.  The photos taken at  Buchenwald, and at all the other camps liberated by Americans, were taken by Army Signal Core photographers and each photo has a number on the bottom in white ink.

Of course, there were American soldiers who had cameras that they had “liberated” from the Germans, but their photos are candid photos, not posed like the photo of the four men, shown above.

The photo of the four men is shown on this page of USHMM website.

The same photo is shown on this website, with the following information:

Pictured at right are four German men after being interned at the notorious Bad Nenndorf  secret prison set up by  the British during their occupation of north-west Germany in 1945. They are far from the worst of the cases discovered there.

A big Thank You to Carolyn Yeager who has exposed many lies about the Holocaust, including the photo of the German prisoners, which the Jews are claiming as a photo of prisoners at Buchenwald.

March 23, 2013

time is running out for Elie Wiesel, famous (alleged) survivor of Auschwitz and Buchenwald

Filed under: Buchenwald, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 8:45 am

I previously blogged about Elie Wiesel and his lack of an Auschwitz tattoo here.  I wrote about Elie Wiesel’s alleged stay at the Buchenwald camp here. Elie Wiesel has no Auschwitz identification number and no Buchenwald identification number, but he still maintains that he was a prisoner in both of those camps.  Wiesel doesn’t seem to care that there is a website devoted to telling the world that he has no tattoo.  I was blogging about Elie Wiesel and his famous book way back in 2010 here.

This website gives some information about the case, which I am quoting:

…. we wanted to check the most overwhelming fact [the lack of a tattoo], by contacting Auschwitz first by mail, then by phone. The head of Archive of the Auschwitz Museum, M. Plosa, confirmed that the number A-7713, which Elie Wiesel claims without ever displaying it publicly, was attributed to Lazar Wisel, born 15 years before him, and who therefore cannot get mixed up with him.

I am taking the liberty of quoting from the letter that was sent to the French investigator, whom I quoted above:

Thank you very much for your message of 4th December 2012.  I would like to inform you that basing on archival documents from our collection it is possible to settle as follows:

The prisoner number A-7713 was given on 24th May 1944 for Mr. Lazsr WISEL, born on 4th September 1913 in Marmaroasieget (Hungary). After the liquidation and evacuation of the Auschwitz camp Mr. Lazar Wisel was transferred to KL Buchenwald. His arrived to this camp is dated on 26th January 1945 [...]

Yours faithfully
Wojciech Plosa
Head of Archive
The state Museum Auschwitz Birkenau in  Oswiecim

So even the Auschwitz Museum will not confirm that Elie Wiesel was a prisoner at Auschwitz nor that Elie was given the tattoo number A-7713 which he swore under oath that he has.  It is time for Elie Wiesel to publicly admit that he is an imposter.

I previously blogged about Elie Wiesel and the world’s belief about Auschwitz here.

March 11, 2013

The young boys who were saved by the prisoners at Buchenwald

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 4:35 pm

Just when I thought I was all blogged out, they pull me back in.  Today, I received an e-mail from a reader of my blog who alerted me to yet another book about the young boys, who were saved from certain death by the Communist Resistance Fighters at Buchenwald.  The book is entitled The Buchenwald Child: Truth, Fiction and Propaganda; it was written by William John Niven and published in 2009.  You can read parts of it on Amazon.com here.

Curiously, the book by William John Niven mentions that 905 boys were saved by the prisoners at Buchenwald.  Other books use the number 904.  Apparently, Niven added one more boy to the number of boys who were saved because other books do not include Stefan Zweig among the saved boys.

Ken Waltzer has been working on a book about the boys of Buchenwald since 2007; you can read about his book here.

Here is the description of Niven’s book, given by Amazon.com:

At the notorious Buchenwald concentration camp, communist prisoners organized resistance against the SS and even planned an uprising. They helped rescue a three-year-old Jewish boy, Stefan Jerzy Zweig, from certain death in the gas chambers. After the war, his story became a focus for the German Democratic Republic’s celebration of its resistance to the Nazis. Now Bill Niven tells the true story of Stefan Zweig: what actually happened to him in Buchenwald, how he was protected, and at what price. He explores the (mis)representation of Zweig’s rescue in East Germany and what this reveals about that country’s understanding of its Nazi past. Finally he looks at the telling of the Zweig rescue story since German unification: a story told in the GDR to praise communists has become a story used to condemn them. Bill Niven is Professor of Contemporary German History at the Nottingham Trent University, UK.

Gas chambers (plural) at Buchenwald?  Yes, of course; every Nazi camp had gas chambers.  Where do you think the Nazis disinfected the clothing of the prisoners?  In a Gaskammer, of course. You can read about the alleged Buchenwald homicidal gas chamber on my website here.

I previously blogged about the boys at Buchenwald here and here. I also blogged about another boy at Buchenwald here.

Why is there so much interest in the young boys at Buchenwald?  The Buchenwald camp was the first camp to be liberated by American soldiers.  When the Americans arrived on April 11, 1945, they found that the camp had been taken over by the Communist prisoners.  America immediately started a propaganda campaign about the atrocities committed in Buchenwald.  Yet, there had to be some explanation in the press regarding how and why 904 young boys had not been killed. You can read about the liberation of Buchenwald on my website here.

This quote, regarding the boys at Buchenwald, is from an article which you can read in full here:

They were mostly Jewish children and youths from Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Rumania, and Lithuania, who were brought in 1944-45 to Buchenwald, some with fathers or brothers, most as orphans. Most were teenagers but one-sixth were 12 years old and under.  The two youngest boys were four years old.  Some had been in German factory labor camps in Poland until mid- or late 1944.  Some had been in Auschwitz and its satellite camps and were taken to Buchenwald to slave in its sub-camps in 1944 or were evacuated in early 1945, arriving in bad shape in open coal cars in the frigid air. [...]

The story is little known. Veteran prisoners decided to protect the youths, drawing on the influence won by the German Communists and their allies in the internal camp self-administration.  First they did what they could to keep the youths from being sent to the outer sub-camps, where slave labor was killing. Second, they clustered the youths in children’s barracks under tight discipline and control to minimize their contact with SS guards, especially blocks 8, 23, and 66.  Third, they used their influence to provide access to occasional additional food and warm clothing. They used tough discipline to keep starving youths from scavenging food freely in the camp or stealing food from one another. They distributed Red Cross packages sent to other prisoners to the children. [...]

Among the boys was little Lulek, Israel Meir Lau, 8 years old, from Piotrkow, Poland, who was protected in block 8 along with several hundred others. He later became chief rabbi of Israel and today heads Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. Among the older boys was Eliezer Wiesel, 16 years-old from Sighet, Rumania, who was in block 66 with hundreds of boys under adult mentorship. He later became a Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Using the Search Inside feature on Amazon.com, I copied the following quotes from the book by Niven:

From Page 23:

Cracow and Biezanow

Stefan [Zweig] was born in the Cracow ghetto on 28 January 1941 to Zacharias and Helena Zweig; he had an eight-year-old sister at the time of this birth. Barely a month later, in order to avoid deportation, the Zweig family took refuse in the village of Wola Duchacka.  Here Zacharias successfully applied for the right of this family to live in the Cracow ghetto, where he worked to the Jewish Community.  In 1942, the Nazis began the construction of the Plaszow concentration and labor camp; deportation this camp would certainly have meant the separation of parents from their children, and Zacharias resolved to keep his family together by staying in the ghetto.  Even when sent to do forced labor in the Biezanow concentration camp in late 1942, Zacharias was able to maintain contact with Helena and his children.  On 13 March 1943, the Nazis began the third major “resettlement” action within the Cracow ghetto.  Fearing this would lead to the liquidation of their families in Cracow, a number of Biezanow inmates, including Zacharias, pleaded with Biezanow’s SS commandant, Mueller, for help.  Mueller, after negotiations with Amon Goeth, who was in charge of the resettlement action, secured permission to enter the ghetto and gather together the families of the inmates of Biezanow and “Julag-1.”  But before they could leave the ghetto, all these family members were subjected to an inspection.  To hide Stefan from the probing eyes of Goeth, Helena hid him in a sack.  But she was unable to conceal her daughter.  Goeth tore Sylvia away from her mother and ordered her to return to the ghetto.  But Sylvia secretly rejoined the group at the gate before it left the ghetto and was taken to “Julag-1” with the other members of her family.  From there, Zacharias and his family were sent to Biezanow.  Here, new problems arose.  Stefan was too young to be allowed to stay there.

From Page 24  The Protection of Stefan Jerzy Zweig

Zacharias first hid Stefan, then persuaded a Pole living in the area to take Stefan in.  Some Poles reported such illicit acts of concealment to the Nazis, and several times Poles who had taken Stefan in became afraid and abandoned him, leaving him lying next to the camp wire.

This psychological torture went on for some months, until the Nazis scaled down their search for hidden children and it became conceivable to bring young children into Biezanow.  When Zacharias had run out of money to pay for Stefan’s protection, he gook him back into the camp.  Still, the SS did occasionally go through the prisoners’ blocks looking for children.  Sometimes this happened without warning, and on such occasions Stefan had to be hidden.  Thus a member of the work detail responsible for removing the garbage sometimes hid Stefan among the refuse and took him out of the camp to safety; Zacharias later would retrieve him from the garbage dump.  On other occasions, Zacharias entrusted Stefan to the care of the Polish women outside the camp — to whom he once had to throw the child over the barbed-wire fence.  By Stefan was so well-trained that his father only needed to mention the word “SS” for him to remain completely silent.

Plaszow and Skarzysko Kamienna

On 15 November 1943, the Biezanow camp was dissolved, and the Zweig family was forced to move to Plaszow, where men and women were separated: Sylvia went with her mother, Stefan with Zacharias.  The SS began to take children and older prisoners out of the camp and shoot them on a nearby hill.  When a doctor in the camp by the name of Gross came to the women’s barracks to register the remaining children, Helena, who knew Gross personally and knew too that he had certain obligations toward the Zweigs, begged him to try to prevent any further separation of mothers from their children.  Gross subsequently promised Zacharias he would do what he could to help all threatened children.  He informed Zacharias of an impending transport to Skarzysko Kamienna, assuring him that Skarzysko was a labor camp, not a death camp.  Zacharias resolved to join the transport with his family.  Gross promised to ensure that nothing would happen to the children as they left the camp — thereby returning a favor to Zacharias, who had helped him in the past.  On his way out of Plaszow, Zacharias once more hid Stefan, this time wrapping him inside his raincoat, which he then carried over his shoulder; as he passed Amon Goeth and other SS men at the gates of the camp, he struck a posture of deference. Gross followed the transport at  a distance, and appeared to keep his word.  Zacharias and his family arrived safely in Skarzysko.  [...]

From Page 25

A 1956 brochure-cum-guidebook produced by the Museum for German History features a photograph of Zweig. The text stresses that while Buchenwald was the expression of murderous bestiality, its history also bore witness above all the the strength of the solidarity of the resistance fighters, who rose above fascist atrocities.  The guidebook states that an example of such fighters were the prisoners in the Storage Building, where comrades saved the three-year-old Stefan Zweig from death, hiding him between articles of clothing at risk of their own lives.  Strikingly, the story of Stefan’s rescue is positioned within the guidebook at the point where the narrative first turns away from telling the horrors of Buchenwald to consider more uplifting aspects.  Up to that point, the brochure largely features photographs and drawings of suffering and dead bodies. Suddenly, the reader is confronted with an image of a healthy-looking, relatively well-dressed boy wearing boots.  Stefan symbolizes survival, life and above all the triumph of solidarity over murder.  His rescue becomes a pivotal moment in a narrative of death and transcendence.  

A similar positioning of the Zweig rescue story was characteristic of its treatment in the museum at Buchenwald.  In the 1955 exhibition drafted by the MfDG, the same photograph of Stefan was shown as in the guidebook, together with Zacharias’s brief 1945 account of his son’s rescue as noted down by Stefan Heymann.  The reference to Zweig follows sections on mass murder and slave labor.  According to a 1958 draft for the new museum finally realized in 1964, there was to be a display board on women and children at Buchenwald, including Zacharias’s early postwar account of Stefan’s rescue.  It was to be situated between display boards on the mass murder of Soviets, Poles, and Jews, and on the murderous conditions at Buchenwald-Dora on the one hand, and murder of Thalmann and the prisoners’ uprising of April 1945 on the other.  Interestingly, the former Buchenwald prisoner Willi Seifert objected to the over-concentration on Zweig; a revised draft features more detail on other children saved by the communist resistance movement.
In the mid-1950s, a plaque commemorating Stefan’s rescue was mounted on the outside wall of the Storage Building.  It informs the visitor that “prisoners took care of the three-year-old Stefan Zweig, hiding him between sacks,” and that they risked their lives to save him from annihilation.  The Storage Building itself had only survived by demolition process described earlier because it was in used as a grain store by a supply firm.  In 1953, following attempts by Erfurt’s Regional Council to get permission to tear it down, the GDR’s Institute for the Maintenance of Monuments stepped in to insist on its preservation. Gradually, the idea took root that the Storage Building would be an ideal site for a new museum.  [...]

But this report also mentions the protection of other children (for example, in Block 8) and cites the number of children still alive at the camp on liberation.  So while “the Boy” could be Stefan, he could also be representative of all of Buchenwald’s children.  If anything, the apparent age of “The Boy,” who looks to be nine or ten despite the fact that Cremer has fitted him out with an oversized, adult head, should discourage us from seeing him as absolutely identical to the three-year-old Stefan Zweig.

So was Stefan Zweig at Buchenwald or not? He was apparently not in the barracks where the other children were taken care of by the Communist prisoners.  He was in the Storage Building which was later turned into a Museum.

The large building on the left was the Storehouse at Buchenwald

The large building on the left was the Storehouse at Buchenwald; it is now a Museum

The photo above shows the Storehouse, the largest building in the Buchenwald camp, where the clothing and personal property of the inmates was kept. If a prisoner was released from the camp, his clothing was given back to him. The storehouse is now used to house the Buchenwald Museum.

In front of the storehouse was the camp laundry, which has been torn down. Goethe’s Oak was in front of the laundry building; the stump of the oak tree is shown in the photo above. The tree was killed in an Allied bombing raid on the camp on August 24, 1944 when a number of prisoners were also killed.  The surface of the stump is covered with small rocks left by visitors to the camp.

The one-story building to the right in the photo above is the disinfection building which is connected to the storehouse by an underground tunnel. Incoming prisoners were first brought to the disinfection building where their heads and entire bodies were shaved. Then they were completely submerged into a large tub of creosote to kill lice and bacteria. Then they had to go into the showers, after which they were sprayed with liquid disinfectant. All this was done in the effort to stop epidemics in the camp.

When I visited Buchenwald in 1999, I saw the Museum, which had been redone in 1995 after the fall of Communism in East Germany.  Since then, the Museum has been redone again.  I did not see anything about the boys of Buchenwald in the Museum in 1999.

October 15, 2012

Do the Jews now own the phrase Jedem das Seine?

Filed under: Buchenwald, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 10:38 am

Jedem das Seine on Buchenwald camp gate

I read in the news here that the neighbors of a Dutch businessman were threatening to sue him if he erected a gate on his property with the phrase “Jedem das Seine” on it.

Jack Bakker, a Dutch businessman and art collector, had made plans to erect a gate in the municipality of Zandvoort. But last year the municipality said it would prevent the construction of an early design of the gate following protests by CIDI, the Dutch watchdog on anti-Semitism. The municipality said it would not authorize construction because it violated building regulations.

The phrase “Jedem das Seine,” which is on the gate into the former Buchenwald concentration camp, means “to each his own,” but it has the connotation of “everyone gets what he deserves.”  Buchenwald was the only concentration camp to have this sign on the gate into the camp, AFAIK.

Buchenwald was a Class II camp, which meant that prisoners in the camp had a slim chance of being released.  Dachau, Sachsenhausen, Gross Rosen, Flossenbürg, and the Auschwitz I camp were Class I camps, which had the slogan “Arbeit macht Frei” on the gate, meaning that the prisoners had a good chance of being released.  Mauthausen was the only Class III camp, which had no sign on the gate; prisoners at Mauthausen were classified “Return unwanted” meaning that they had no chance of being released.

The phrase “Arbeit macht Frei” has now been claimed by the Jews as an icon of the Holocaust.  The claim is made that this slogan was used on the Class I camps to taunt the Jews because they had no chance of being released, even if they worked hard.  The Class I camps which had this sign were mostly populated by political prisoners who were non-Jews.  The “death camps” for the Jews, such as  Majdanek and Auschwitz II,  did not have an “Arbeit macht Frei” sign.

Sign on gate into Gross Rosen concentration camp

Gross Rosen was the camp to which the Jews, who didn’t get on Schindler’s List, were sent.  It was a Class I camp, not a “death camp.”

This quote is from the news article, cited above:

The early design by the Belgian designer Job Smeets featured two smoking chimneys that function as pillars and barbed wire — an apparent reference to Nazi crematoria — and included a translation of the German writing on the gates of Buchenwald: Jedem das Seine (“to each his own”).

“We thought that, fortunately, it was over but now it again seems like this gate is being built,” Wim Post, a neighbor of Bakker, told the RTV crew. “In a museum, people chose whether to see it, but we are confronted with it and we don’t want it.”

Eefje van Bommel, Bakker’s lawyer, told the Dutch daily that the Buchenwald text never made into the final design.

“The gate is being branded for no reasons,” she said, adding that the municipality’s decision not to authorize the gate violated her client’s rights.

Bakker told the Dutch paper Haarlems Dagblad this month through his lawyer of his plans to build the gate, the Dutch daily reported.

His original  plans became known last year when he hired Smeets to work on the gate.

So now we find out that using the phrase Jedem das Seine is anti-Semitic?

Buchenwald was not specifically a camp for Jews; the Jews were “transported to the East,” and political prisoners were sent to Buchenwald.  Near the end of World War II, the survivors of the three Auschwitz camps were sent to Germany; some of the Jews were sent to the Buchenwald camp.

July 17, 2012

What prompted the Luftwaffe to transfer Allied airmen out of Buchenwald and into a POW camp?

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , , , , — furtherglory @ 10:53 am

Update July 18, 2012:

A reader of my blog supplied a link to the death records at the Buchenwald camp.  According to the death records, L.C. Beck died in the Buchenwald camp on October 31, 1944.  The date that the first Allied Airmen were taken out of Buchenwald and sent to a POW camp was October 19, 1944.  So L.C. Beck died after the first airmen were taken out of Buchenwald, which means that the story told by Edwin Ritter is wrong. A big Thank You to all the readers who contributed to this correction of the facts.

Continue reading my original post:

I am writing again today, about the captured Allied airmen who were sent to Buchenwald, to answer a comment on a previous blog post about the airmen which you can read here.  In my previous post, I questioned whether Phillip Lamason was the person responsible for contacting the Luftwaffe and getting the airmen out of Buchenwald.

Here is the comment made by a reader of my blog:

Records show that Lieutenant L.C. Beck died in Buchenwald from purulent pleurisy on the evening of 29 November 1944. That’s over 5 weeks AFTER the main group of allied airmen (156 of them) were transferred by the Luftwaffe to a POW camp. So if Beck died in Ritter’s arms, as stated above, he must have been part of the small group of airmen who were not transferred with the main group on 19 Ocotber 1944. Therefore, it would have been impossible for Luftwaffe Doctor to arrange the transfer of the main group of airmen, as you elude to above. Thus, the main group of airmen must have been released / transferred because of Lamason’s efforts, as is well documented by many reliable and reputable sources.

Phillip Lamason was the senior officer, and the greatest hero, in the group of 168 pilots who were sent to Buchenwald.  He has his own page on Wikipedia which you can read in full here.  This quote is from Wikipedia:

For several weeks Lamason negotiated with the camp authorities to have the airmen transferred to a POW camp, but his requests were denied. At great risk, Lamason secretly got word to the Luftwaffe of the Allied airmen’s captivity and, seven days before their scheduled execution, 156 of the 168 prisoners were transferred to Stalag Luft III. Most of the airmen credit their survival at Buchenwald to the leadership and determination of Lamason.

The Wikipedia entry for Lamason does not give any of the details of how Lamason secretly got word to the Luftwaffe.  I have searched and searched on the Internet to find more information on how Lamason contacted the Luftwaffe. I didn’t find out anything about how Lamason secretly contacted the Luftwaffe when he was at  Buchenwald, but I did find some interesting information on the website of the National Museum of the Air Force, which I am quoting:

ARMY AIR FORCES VICTIMS OF THE HOLOCAUST

Buchenwald, An Example
Germans built Buchenwald in 1937 as a work camp for the “undesirables” of Nazi society, mostly Jews and political prisoners. It later became one of a number of German “death camps.” At war’s end, as many as 60,000 people had died there. Even more died at such larger camps as Dachau and Auschwitz, which were run with greater “efficiency.”

In later summer and autumn of 1944, 82 AAF and 86 British Commonwealth aviators were captives at Buchenwald. Most had been shot down over France and had made connections with the French Resistance in their effort to return to their units, as they were expected to do. They had received French identification papers and were dressed as civilians to avoid capture. A traitor within the French Underground betrayed them to the Germans, and they were captured. As Allied forces prepared to enter Paris, they were evacuated with a large number of political prisoners to Buchenwald in Weimar, Germany. They arrived after a harrowing five-day train ride jammed in boxcars with little food or water. There they were shaved bare and spent the next three weeks without shoes or shelter, sleeping on paving stones. A Canadian aviator described the daily ration as “a little bowl of soup made from grass or cabbage leaves, and an inch of bread and three little potatoes.” One pilot lost more than 65 pounds during his six weeks there.

Eventually, the POWs and other prisoners were placed in a barracks, 600 men to a building designed for 250. They slept on wooden shelves, five to a bunk, so crowded that no one could turn over until all did at the same time. P-47 pilot Lt. L.C. Beck Jr. and Royal Air Force Flying Officer P.D. Hemmens died before the airmen were transferred to a POW camp in October-November 1944. There they still faced the hardships of imprisonment, but at least they were free from the horrors of a death camp.

Notice that the article on the website of the National Museum of the Air Force mentions that Lt. L.C. Beck died before the airmen were transferred to a POW camp.  This contradicts what was written in the comment on my blog and proves that I was right when I wrote on my blog, that “Jack Beck” died before the airmen were transferred to a POW camp.

I previously wrote that the reason that the Luftwaffe found out about the airmen at Buchenwald was because a Luftwaffe doctor came to the camp to sign a death certificate for “Jack Beck.”  It may have been Phillip Lamason who contacted the Luftwaffe and got the Luftwaffe doctor to come to the camp on the pretext of signing a death certificate.

The strange thing about the whole story of the American Airmen being sent to Buchenwald is that it was kept secret for years.  Why keep it a secret when the Allied Airmen were not doing anything wrong? In spite of the fact that the Allied Airmen were completely innocent, they were unjustly sent to Buchenwald which was one of the two main camps for illegal combatants who were helping the French Resistance, the other one being Natzweiler.

After World War II was over, an American Military Tribunal conducted a series of trials of the German war criminals who had served in the Nazi concentration camps in Germany.

At the opening of the trial of the Buchenwald war criminals on April 11, 1947, the court president, Brig. Gen. Emil Charles Kiel, asked their American defense counsel, “How do the accused plead?”

To this, Captain Emmanuel Lewis, the attorney for the defense, replied:

“As chief defense counsel, I enter a plea of not guilty for all of the accused. Before we begin, if it please the court, there is a matter of great concern. The accused are charged with victimizing captured and unarmed citizens of the United States, and they seek to defend themselves against this charge. But despite our repeated requests, the prosecution has failed to furnish us with the name or whereabouts of even one single American victim.”

Lt. Col. William D. Denson, the chief prosecutor, replied:

“We are unfortunately unable to comply. The victims were last seen being carted into the crematories. From there they went up the chimney in smoke, and all the power of the United States and all the documents in Augsburg cannot tell us which way they went. We are sorry that we cannot furnish their whereabouts, but we fail to see that it is material whether one American or fifty thousand were incarcerated in Buchenwald. The crimes of these accused would be just as heinous.”

Why would the American prosecutor of the German war criminals of Buchenwald say that American airmen “went up the chimney in smoke,” when he must have known that the airmen had been saved by the Luftwaffe?  Was it because he didn’t want to say anything good about the Luftwaffe, or because he didn’t want to imply that the American airmen had been helping the French Resistance and that’s why they were sent to one of the main camps for illegal combatants who were fighting with the French Resistance?

Edwin Ritter, the man who held “Jack Beck” in his arms when he died, admitted that he (Ritter) was helping the French Resistance, as I previously wrote in a blog post here.

June 25, 2012

Holocaust survivor tells about the 100 mile death march out of Buchenwald

During World War II, every school child in America knew all about the infamous “Bataan Death March” which was a 100 mile forced march of American POWs in the Phillipines. But the 100 mile march out of Buchenwald, we didn’t know.

Besides the Bataan Death March, the only other mention of a 100 mile march, that I could find by searching the Internet, was the death march on November 8, 1944, when the Nazis forced 25,000 Jews to walk over 100 miles in rain and snow from Budapest to the Austrian border, followed by a second forced march of 50,000 persons, ending at the Mauthausen concentration camp.

Now this little-known death march out of Buchenwald is in the news because Jack Aizenberg “has made an emotional pilgrimage back to his home town of Staszow in Poland as part of ITV’s new Strictly Kosher series, which tracks the lives of Manchester’s Jewish community.”

This quote is from Jack’s story in the online British newspaper Mirror News:

But as the Allied advance continued he [Jack Aizenberg] was put on a two-week death march to Theresienstadt concentration camp in Czechoslovakia.

“It took two weeks,” he says. “There were 600 of us when we started, but only 60 survived.

“If you couldn’t walk you were shot, if you fell down you were shot. You either dropped dead or were shot.”  [...]

“They gave us water but no food.”

Towards the end of World War II, there were Red Cross representatives present in all the Nazi concentration camps in Germany, as preparations were made to turn the camps over to the Allies.  The Theresienstadt camp was turned over to the Red Cross in the last week of the war, when the SS guards left the camp.  There were three trains on which prisoners at Bergen-Belsen were sent towards Theresienstadt, but only one of the trains made it because the Allies were bombing the railroad tracks.  I previously blogged about the trains to Theresienstadt here and here.

It makes sense that Jews in the Buchenwald camp would have been sent on foot to Theresienstadt because trains could not get through.  So why is this 100 mile death march to Theresienstadt so little known?  As far as I know, Jack Aizenberg is the only Holocaust survivor who has talked about it.

Another thing that Jack Aizenberg mentioned in his story is the soap made from Jews at Buchenwald.  Yes, the Nazis made soap out of the Jews at Buchenwald.  Don’t try to deny it, especially if you live in Germany, because you could end up in prison for five years.

This quote is from Jack’s story in the online Mirror News:

The Russian advance into Poland did not lead to freedom.

Jack and his fellow prisoners were loaded on to railway cattle trucks and taken to the notorious Buchenwald concentration camp.

“One day they gave us all a little piece of soap with initials on it like you get in hotels. It stood for ‘pure Jewish fat’.

“That was what that soap was made of [....]“

At the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1945, the Soviet Union charged that the Nazis had made soap from human fat.  The photo below shows the soap that was displayed in the court room.

Soap made from Jewish fat was displayed in the courtroom at the Nuremberg IMT

When I visited the Buchenwald Memorial Site in 1999, I was told that the Nazis had made soap in the basement of the building shown in the photo below.

Soap was made in the basement of this building at Buchenwald

The story in the Mirror News ends with this quote:

The Red Cross took over the running of the camp and pressure was put on the British Government to provide homes for some of the orphaned children.

Permission was finally given for 1,000 children under 16 to enter the country.

And Jack was among the first 300 orphans, flown to Windermere in Cumbria as it was thought they would recuperate faster in the country.

“I had to lie about my age to get on the plane. I was 19 but we had no papers.

“I was the last to get on the plane because I was ticking off the list. When I got on the fear and the hunger was gone.

Jack Aizenberg’s story was also published on this website which reports that “As the Allies drew nearer, Jack was forced to undertake a brutal march of more than 100 miles to Theresienstadt.”

Here is another version of the last days at Buchenwald, quoted from this website:

The Commandant Hermann Pister received orders from Berlin to get rid of the prison population before the allies could discover the camp. But Pister hesitated. Historian Robert Abzug attributes this hesitation to Pister’s practicality. Pister knew that Americans were coming and he wanted to present himself well, so he slowed attempt to evacuate and kill the prisoners. Between April 3rd and 10th over 20,000 inmates were transported out of the camp to Dachau, Flossenburg, and Theresienstadt. Most died on the journey. Through the communist resistance groups within the prisoners’ ranks, many SS orders were outright defied or stalled. Chaos began to reign within the camp. Pister did not threaten the inmates with the usual force and by April 10th he fled with most of the SS guard leaving only a skeleton crew to control the camp.

So what is going on here?  Note that the prisoners were “transported,” not marched out of Buchenwald.  Why is there no website that supports Jack Aizenberg’s story of the 100 mile march?

The British are making a big effort to teach young people today about the Holocaust.  But are they going too far?  I am getting the impression that the British are trying to bring down the whole Holocaust story, by telling outrageous lies — and they are succeeding, in my humble opinion.

May 10, 2012

Correction on the identification of prisoners in a Buchenwald photo — Updated

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 11:09 am

Update May 12, 2012:

The boy wearing a beret was incorrectly identified by the USHMM as Elie Wiesel

The photo above shows the face of the boy, who has been mistakenly identified by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum as Elie Wiesel.  The photo shows the orphan boys who marched out of the Buchenwald concentration camp on April 27, 1945. The boy, who is right in front of the boy whose face is circled, has been incorrectly identified as Elie Wiesel on the website of Ken Waltzer.  According to The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, neither of these boys is Elie Wiesel.

A closer look at the face of the boy wearing a beret, who is NOT Elie Wiesel

The face of the prisoner identified by The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity as 16-year-old Elie Wiesel

I previously blogged about this whole controversy here.

Continue reading my original post:

I have made corrections on several pages of my website after being informed by The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity that Elie Wiesel is not in the photo of orphan boys marching out of the Buchenwald concentration camp.  I had previously identified Elie Wiesel as the tall boy wearing a beret in the photo below.  I had gotten this information from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum website.  Apparently the USHMM was mistaken and Elie Wiesel in not in any of the photos of the orphan boys at Buchenwald.

Orphan boys marching out of the Buchenwald concentration camp

Another photo of the orphan boys marching out of Buchenwald

I should have known that the tall boy wearing a beret was not Elie Wiesel, but I trusted the USHMM to give accurate information.  The Communist prisoners, who ruled the camp, wore berets to identify themselves to the other prisoners.  Notice the man on the far right in the photo above wearing a beret to identify himself as a Communist. There is also an adult man, wearing a beret, in the photo below.

Child survivors of Buchenwald wearing clothes made from German military uniforms

One of the youngest survivors of the Buchenwald concentration camp, shown in the center of the photograph above, was four-year-old Josef Schleifstein. The Communist prisoners, who were in charge of the day-to-day administration of the camp, made sure that the children were well cared for. Note the adult man in the back row wearing a beret to identify himself as a Communist. The children in the photo are wearing clothes made for them by the Americans out of German uniforms. As prisoners in the camp, the orphans had worn striped uniforms just like the other prisoners.

Buchenwald orphans leaving on a train to Paris

I received the photo below, along with the caption, from The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity.

Note that the caption on the photo above states that “The picture was taken on April 16, 1945…”  Either the date on the photo is wrong, or Elie Wiesel made a mistake when he wrote in two of his books that he was in the hospital at Buchenwald on April 16, 1945 after the Buchenwald camp had been liberated.

I am eagerly awaiting Ken Waltzer’s new book about the Buchenwald orphans, which will get all this straightened out.  On his website, Waltzer also identified one of the orphan boys, marching out of the camp, as Elie Wiesel.  According to The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, the only photo of Elie Wiesel in Buchenwald is the one taken on April 16, 1945 in barrack #56. The orphans barrack was #66.

April 17, 2012

Two Catholic priests were crucified upside down at Buchenwald

Filed under: Buchenwald, Dachau, Germany — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 7:27 pm

A couple of days ago, I read an article written by Kathy Schiffer on this website.  This quote is from the article:

It was at Buchenwald that two Austrian priests, Otto Neururer and Mathias Spannlang, were crucified upside down on June 5, 1940.

I had never heard about this before I read the article, so I went to Wikipedia to find out more.  According to Wikipedia, it was that evil Nazi Martin Sommer who perpetrated this atrocity.  This quote from Wikipedia tells the story:

Walter Gerhard Martin Sommer (February 8, 1915 – June 7, 1988) was an SS Hauptscharführer (master sergeant) who served as a guard at the concentration camps of Dachau and Buchenwald. Sommer, known as the “Hangman of Buchenwald” was considered a depraved sadist who reportedly ordered two Austrian priests, Otto Neururer and Mathias Spannlang, crucified upside-down.

Note that Martin Sommer REPORTEDLY ordered this atrocity.  “Reportedly” is only slightly better than “allegedly.”

Wikipedia also says this about Martin Summer, who was put on trial by the Nazis themselves:

After the SS trial Sommer received a reduction in rank and was sentenced to a penal battalion fighting on the Eastern Front where he was wounded in a tank explosion, losing his left arm and right leg. He was taken captive by the Red Army and was detained as P.O.W. until 1950 when his prisoner status was upgraded to war criminal. He was released from Soviet captivity in 1955 as part of the negotiations conducted on behalf of Soviet held German prisoners by Konrad Adenauer.

Karl Otto Koch, the Commandant of Buchenwald, was also put on trial at the same time and he was sentenced to death for ordering the deaths of two prisoners.  How did Martin Sommer get off with such a light sentence after he had ordered the crucifixion of two priests?

I googled some more and found the website where Kathy Schiffer had apparently gotten her information.  Here is a quote from that website:

Neururer was arrested on the charge of “slander to the detriment of German marriage” and interned first in the concentration camp of Dachau and later in Buchenwald. The sadistic tortures to which he was subjected caused incredible suffering, but even so he shared his scarce food rations with prisoners who were even weaker than himself. In the Buchenwald camp he was approached by a prisoner who asked to be baptized. Perhaps he was an agent provocateur. Neururer suspected that the request could be a trap, but his sense of duty did not allow him to refuse. Two days later he was transferred to the much feared “bunker”, which in concentration camps was the place of extreme punishment. There he was hanged upside down until he died on 30 May 1940.

Being “hanged upside down until death” is not crucifixion.  Note also that Neururer was sent from Dachau to Buchenwald.  That doesn’t make any sense.  The priests were sent to Dachau from other camps so they could all be together. Note that the date is also different from the date given by Kathy Schiffer.

I previously blogged here, way back in 2010,  about the priests who were allegedly crucified at Buchenwald.

After a little more searching, I found this website which has some information about Otto Neuruer:

Otto Neururer was one of hundreds of priests who died under SS Nazi persecution.  “He was injected with Malaria by the “doctors” who conducted human lab experiments in the camps during that brutal time.

I believe that this version of the story is the truth.  This quote is from my own website:

Because of the fact that they were exempt from work, the priests were chosen as subjects for medical experiments, conducted by Dr. Klaus Schilling, on a cure for malaria. As a result of these experiments, many of the priests died.

This information is also from my own website:

In 1940, the German bishops and the Pope had persuaded Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler to concentrate all the priests imprisoned in the various concentration camps into one camp, and to house them all together in separate blocks with a chapel where they could say Mass.

In early December 1940, the priests already in Dachau were put into Barracks Block 26 near the end of the camp street. Within two weeks, they were joined by around 800 to 900 priests from Buchenwald, Mauthausen, Sachsenhausen, Auschwitz and other camps, who were put into Blocks 28 and 30. Block 30 was later converted into an infirmary barrack.

At first, the priests at Dachau were given special privileges such as a ration of wine, a loaf of bread for four men, and individual bunk beds. The priests were not required to work and they were allowed to celebrate Mass.

In October 1941, these privileges were taken away. Only the German priests were now allowed to say Mass. All non-German clergymen, including Poles, Dutchmen, Luxembourgers and Belgians, were removed from Block 26 and sent to Block 28. A wire fence was placed around Block 28 and a sentry stood guard. The non-German priests were now forced to work, just like the rest of the prisoners. Allegedly, this change happened because the Pope had made a speech on the radio in which he condemned the Nazis, and the German bishops had made a public protest about the treatment of the priests.

[...]

The Catholic priests were not sent to Dachau just because they were priests. Catholics and Protestants alike were arrested as “enemies of the state” but only if they preached against the Nazi government. An important policy of the Nazi party in Germany was called Gleichschaltung, a term that was coined in 1933 to mean that all German culture, religious practice, politics, and daily life should conform with Nazi ideology. This policy meant total control of thought, belief, and practice and it was used to systematically eradicate all anti-Nazi elements after Hitler came to power.

There were around 20 million Catholics and 20,000 priests in Nazi Germany. The vast majority of the German clergymen and the German people, including the 40 million Protestants, went along with Hitler’s ideology and were not persecuted by the Nazis.

[...]

Father William J. O’Malley, S.J. wrote the following regarding the priests who were arrested and sent to Dachau because they were actively helping the underground Resistance against the German occupation of Europe:

The 156 French, 63 Dutch, and 46 Belgians were primarily interned for their work in the Underground. If that were a crime, such men as Michel Riquet, S.J., surely had little defense; he was in contact with most of the leaders of the French Resistance and was their chaplain, writing forthright editorials for the underground press, sequestering Jews, POW’s, downed Allied airmen, feeding and clothing them, providing them with counterfeit papers and spiriting them into Spain and North Africa.

[...]

On December 7, 2009, a monument to the late Cardinal Josef Beran, who died in 1969, was unveiled by Prague Archbishop Cardinal Miloslav Vik in Prague, a city in the Czech Republic. Father Josef Beran was one of the priests who was a prisoner at Dachau; he was arrested and sent to Dachau after the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, the Deputy Reich-Protector of Bohemia and Moravia, on May 27, 1942. Beran was accused of being a member of the Czech Resistance which killed Reinhard Heydrich.

[...]

Nerin E. Gun wrote in his book “The Day of the Americans” that Cardinal Faulhaber in Munich sent food packages to Dr. Johannes Neuhäusler right up to the time that the prisoners in the “Honor Bunker” were sent to the Tyrol for their own protection before the camp was liberated. Gun pointed out in his book that Hitler was Catholic and that “he paid his religious dues to the German Catholic Church until the day he died.” Hitler was never excommunicated by the Pope, according to Gun, and he never apostasized.

Here is another paragraph in the article by Kathy Schiffer which contains two mistakes:

Among the Buchenwald survivors were Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel; child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim; Austrian architect and industrial designer Henry P. Glass; and Protestant theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Clergy held inside its formidable walls included Yisrael Meir Lau, former Chief Rabbi of Israel; and Paul Schneider, German pastor, who died at the camp in 1939.

Photo of Paul Schneider hangs in his former cell in the bunker at Buchenwald

According to Wikipedia, Pastor Schneider was executed in his cell when he was injected with poison.  He was  a prisoner in Buchenwald for two years, during which time, he continued to preach against the Nazis from the window of his cell, which finally irritated the SS to the point where they executed him.

I previously blogged about Dietrich Bonhoeffer here.  He was not a survivor of Buchenwald.  He was moved to another camp and hanged on April 9, 1945, two days before Buchenwald was liberated on April 11, 1945.  Yisrael Meir Lau was a survivor of Buchenwald, but he was only 8 years old in 1945; it was after he survived Buchenwald that he became the Chief Rabbi of Israel.  I blogged about him here.

December 5, 2011

African-American soldiers were among the Liberators of Buchenwald

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 11:05 am

Yesterday, the New York Daily News published a story about Irving Roth, a 16-year-old starving prisoner from Czechoslovakia, who was liberated from the Buchenwald concentration camp on April 11, 1945. One of the liberating soldiers was Rick Carrier, a white soldier in the U.S. Army.

This quote is from the New York Daily News story which you can read in full here:

Rick Carrier was a U.S. Army corporal, utterly stunned by the sight of so many living skeletons crammed inside the barracks of the Nazi death camp (Buchenwald).

Irving Roth was one of those skeletons, a starving 16-year-old Jewish prisoner from Czechoslovakia.

But Roth’s strongest memory of that fateful day is not of Carrier but of the African-American soldier who stepped into his barrack and handed out chocolate.

“I had never seen a black person before,” Roth said. “I tell people you may not know what the Messiah looks like, but I do. One is black and one is white.”  [...]

As for the kind black soldier, he is lost to history.

“I remember there were black soldiers there,” said Carrier. “But it was a long time ago.”

The U.S. Army was segregated during World War II, with white soldiers fighting in exclusively white divisions while black and Asian soldiers had their own separate divisions, commanded by white officers.  However, there are several stories of black soldiers being among the liberators of Buchenwald and also the Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria.

Black soldiers from Headquarters and Services Co. of 183rd Engineers Combat Battalion, 8th Corps, Third Army view bodies at Buchenwald on April 17, 1945

The 183rd Engineer Combat Battalion was attached to the 1126th Engineer Combat Group in April 1945. On April 12, 1945, the 1126th Engineer Combat Group was sent to the town of Eisenach, around 100 kilometers from the Buchenwald concentration camp. Five days later, on April 17, 1945, several black soldiers were sent to Buchenwald to deliver some supplies. For most of the liberated prisoners, this was the first time they had ever seen a black man, and many of them would recall it later in their survivor accounts.   (more…)

November 27, 2011

Allied airmen in Buchenwald, a secret that was kept for years by the American government

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, World War II — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 11:43 am

The first time that I ever heard about the Allied airmen, who were sent to the Buchenwald concentration camp in August 1944, was around 10 years ago when the daughter of one of the American flyers sent me an e-mail in which she told her father’s story in great detail.  Frankly, I didn’t believe it.  If this had actually happened, why didn’t the American government include this war crime in the accusations made against the Germans at the Nuremberg IMT?

Lt. Jack Taylor did testify at Nuremberg that Americans had been sent to the Mauthausen camp in Austria and two of them were murdered in the gas chamber there. (He showed their dog tags to prove it.) It was briefly mentioned during the “Dachau trials” conducted by the American Military Tribunal, beginning in November 1945, that Allied pilots had been killed at Buchenwald. When challenged by the defense attorney to prove this accusation, the prosecuting attorney could not supply their names, so this charge was quickly dropped.

The part of Edwin Ritter’s story that I found to be incredulous was his claim that a microchip had been implanted in his foot and it was taken out at a Boston hospital after he returned to America.

Here are the exact words of Edwin Ritter, as told to his daughter who tape recorded his statement on June 18, 1993.  She typed up his statement and sent it to me.  I am quoting from the statement:

I was also called up on the hill by the Belgium internees and the Jewish internees up there on the hill.  And they asked if I would do them a favor.  And they needed microfilm taken out of Buchenwald.  Well Martini and I — Fred Martini was a flyer on a B-17  — volunteered also to go up there and we allowed the Jewish doctors to put microfilm in our feet — front edge just below the toes in the hard part of the meat, and taped them up and made it look like walkin’ in those wooden shoes calloused our feet.  And we were to carry those back to the United States so then the government would know all about it by the time we got there.

At the time that the microchips were implanted in the feet of Edwin Ritter and Fred Martini, the Allied airmen had already been saved by a Luftwaffe doctor, whom Ritter identified as “Captain Black.”  A couple of days later, Ritter and Martini were put on a train which reached the Stalag III camp for POWs on Thanksgiving Day, November 24, 1944. The Germans did not have time to find out about the secret operation, done by a Jewish doctor, to implant the microchips.

Can you understand now, dear reader, why I dismissed Edwin Ritter’s whole story because of his unbelievable account of the implanting of a microchip in his foot?

In November 1944, the Jews at Buchenwald must have known that the American flyers, who were on their way to a POW camp, would not reach America until after the war.  What was on the microfilm, implanted in the feet of two airmen, that a Jewish doctor wanted to send to America?  (I was not aware that this technology was available in 1944, but what do I know?)

Now with the release of the documentary Lost Airmen of Buchenwald, I am beginning to believe Ritter’s story because so much of what Ritter said in the statement that he gave to his daughter, is confirmed by the stories of the 7 airmen who tell their stories in the documentary. But there is one serious difference between the story told by Edwin Ritter and the 7 airmen in the documentary: Edwin Ritter admits that he was dropping supplies to the “French Underground” which is his term for the French Resistance.

According to the statement given by Edwin Ritter to his daughter, who recorded it on June 18, 1993, Ritter was with the American Air Force, but he was sent to England to join the Eighth Air Force.  He trained at Westover Field in Massachusetts before being sent to northern Ireland, where his group waited for assignment.  He was temporarily assigned to the southern part of England and made several bombing runs on Frankfurt and Berlin. After participating in the raid on Ploesti, Romania, his group came back to the field in Ipswich, England.

Here is an exact quote from Ritter’s statement given to this daughter:

And when we came back to our field in Ipswich, England, the Second Division, 93rd Bomb group, 328 Squadron —there were only three of us — and they began to re-assign us to different squadrons.  Well, they found out they needed a group to supply the French underground in France, and they took our plane and they took all the numbers off from it and painted it black.  Between the group of us we were known as the Gypsy Flyers.  We, up until the time the organization was set, we were flying with anyone, anytime, any place.  We had no assigned aircraft.  And once the group was formulated at night to carry supplies, ammunition and food to the French underground, we were known as the Carpetbaggers.

Edwin Ritter was on his fifth mission in the southern part of France and just after he had made the drop of supplies to the French underground, his plane was hit by ground fire.  Ritter mentioned in his statement that he was aiding “the Free French.”  You can read about “the Free French” on this page of my website.  Buchenwald and Natzweiler were the main camps where French Resistance fighters were sent when they were captured.  So naturally, Ritter was sent to Buchenwald.

From this point on, Ritter’s story matches many of the details told by the 7 airmen in the documentary.  Ritter’s story does not prove that the Allied airmen in the documentary were supplying the French Resistance.  However, you can’t blame the Germans for assuming that all the airmen who were shot down over occupied France were illegal combatants who were aiding the illegal combatants in the French Resistance.  And you can’t blame the American government for keeping the story of the Lost Airmen in Buchenwald a secret for years because of course, we Americans didn’t want it known that Americans were fighting as illegal combatants in violation of the Geneva Convention in the “Good War” against those evil Nazis who wanted to kill all the Jews and rule the world.

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