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July 26, 2010

Dachau according to John F. Floyd in the Gadsden Times

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust, TV shows, World War II — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 2:26 pm

Last night I read a commentary entitled “Could the Holocaust happen again?” written by John F. Floyd in the Gadsden Times and I was very upset about it.  This morning I was still bothered about this article.

Almost everything in John F. Floyd’s article is wrong.  You can read the whole article here. At first, I assumed that Gadsden was a city in Scotland or some place where people would not be expected to know anything about Dachau or the Holocaust, but it turns out that Gadsden is actually in Alabama in the good old USA.  Mr. Floyd began his article by writing that he got his information for his article from the History Channel.

Mr. Floyd wrote, regarding what he heard on the History Channel:

“One narrative showed the Americans advancing at a fast pace in Germany, when all of a sudden the advance came to a dead stop. The reason for this sudden termination of the advancement was not German resistance, but a German village called Dachau.”

The photo below shows what a nice village Dachau was. When the Americans arrived, every house was flying a white flag of surrender.

Dachau was a beautiful village of 13,000 people in 1945

The troops had to stop in the village of Dachau because the bridge across the river had been blown up by the Germans, not because the village was some sinister place.

This was followed by this quote from Mr. Floyd’s article:

“When American officers observed the gaunt, emaciated, starving and dying members of the human race, they called an immediate halt to the advancing U.S. forces and locked the gates to the prison. They immediately went into the German town of Dachau and made all town officials assemble at the concentration camp and witness the horrible conditions American troops had found.”

French Resistance fighters at Dachau, April 29, 1945

Polish Resistance fighters at Dachau, April 29, 1945

Prisoners try to get out after Dachau gate was locked, April 29, 1945

Why did the Americans lock the gates at Dachau?  The Americans were the “liberators” and liberators usually liberate or turn the prisoners loose.  Mr. Floyd didn’t mention any reason for locking the gates, probably because the History Channel didn’t address this issue.  The reason the gates were locked at Dachau was to keep the TYPHUS epidemic at the camp from spreading throughout Germany to kill both Germans and Americans.   During World War I, there were 4 million deaths from typhus, and that was just in Poland.  There were 20 million deaths from influenza in World War I.  The American liberators immediately recognized that it would be difficult to control an epidemic in war time, so the first thing they did was to lock the prisoners inside the camp.

So why didn’t John F. Floyd mention the typhus epidemic?

When I went to Journalism School, we were taught that there are only three rules of Journalism:

1. Accuracy  2 Accuracy  3. Accuracy

Those rules are now long gone.  Journalists now choose a side (left wing liberal or right wing conservative) and write propaganda for their side.  The  concept of telling both sides of a story and reporting accurately is completely unknown in today’s news.

Here is another quote from Mr. Floyd’s article:

There had been rumors of atrocities by the Germans in concentration camps, but what faced the Americans was reality, a reality so horrible, that even today it defies description. It was the German concentration camp called Dachau.

O.K. the “reality” defied description.  This could be interpreted that the “reality” was that the atrocities at Dachau were really committed by the American liberators.  Why didn’t John F. Floyd mention the Dachau massacre in which American soldiers killed the Waffen-SS soldiers who had surrendered?

Guards in Tower B were killed after they surrendered

German soldiers were herded into a box car and killed after they surrendered the Dachau camp

Wounded Wehrmacht soldiers were dragged out of a hospital at Dachau and shot while they had their hands in the air

John F. Floyd wrote that the History Channel documentary “hit home” because he and his wife had visited Dachau in 1980 and his wife had previously seen the camp in 1956 when Dachau was a Displaced Persons camp for ethnic Germans who had been expelled from Czechoslovakia. In his defense, Mr. Floyd would not have learned about the killing of the German soldiers who had surrendered at Dachau on his visit to Dachau in 1980 because this was still a closely guarded secret and the one-sided propaganda TV show called the History Channel would not have mentioned it.

In his article, John F. Floyd wrote the following:

Connie and I walked where so many people of the Jewish faith, gypsies, Ukrainians, homosexuals and anyone else the German Third Reich decided was unfit to live had walked to certain death.

So the “German Third Reich” decided that Ukrainians were “unfit to live”?  The Ukraine was in the Soviet Union back then and millions of Ukrainians were deliberately starved to death by the Soviets.  I didn’t know the real story, as told on the History Channel, that the Ukrainians were really “walked to certain death” at Dachau.  The homosexuals were sent to Dachau for at least 6 months of rehabilitation after they had served two sentences for breaking the law against homosexuality which had been on the books since 1871 (Paragraph 175).  The homosexuals were not sent to Dachau for “certain death.”  Gypsies were sent to Dachau only if they broke the law that called for everyone to have a permanent address or if they refused to work; they were not sent to Dachau because the German Third Reich decided they were unfit to live.

Another quote from John F. Floyd:

“Paths led to the gas chambers where the Jewish population was told they were going to the showers to be de-loused, but the showerheads spewed poison gas.”

Dachau gas chamber

As the photo above shows, all the showerheads at Dachau, except one, have been stolen as souvenirs and one can look into the holes and see that the showerheads were not connected to anything.

In 1980, the Dachau Memorial site was telling people that the Jews were killed at Dachau with poison gas that spewed from the showerheads?  What about the sign in the gas chamber which said that the gas chamber was never used?  I thought that the sign was there in 1980, but I could be wrong.   How did the guides explain how pellets “spewed” through the tiny holes in the showerheads?  How did the tour guides explain the bins on the east wall in 1980?

Dachau tour guides tell visitors that gas pellets were poured into the gas chamber through these bins on the east wall of the  gas chamber building

Another quote from John F. Floyd:

A footpath led to the hanging room where men, women and children took their last steps.

What “hanging room” is he talking about?  I was at Dachau in 1997 and there was no “hanging room.”  I returned in 2001 and again in 2003 and 2007, but I did not see a “hanging room.”

The prosecution did not mention that women and children were hanged at Dachau in the proceedings of the American Military Tribunal at Dachau.  Mr. Floyd does not give any sources, other than the History Channel documentary and his  visit to Dachau in 1980.

In his article, Mr. Floyd did mention that his wife, Connie,  “was at Dachau in 1956 and she said many awful reminders of the Holocaust no longer were there, such as lampshades made of human skin, walking canes made of the femurs from the dead, mountains of shoes that belonged to victims of the Germans and piles of teeth from which the gold had been extracted.”

So all these things were being shown in the first Dachau museum in 1956?  No wonder the Bavarian government demanded that the first museum be taken down.

Mr. Floyd wrote:

The television program then showed Dachau townspeople, at the American military’s insistence, loading the dead onto vehicles and stacking the bodies like cordwood. German men were dressed in coats and ties and the women looked like they were going to the theater.

This sounds like the Dachau townspeople were acting badly because they dressed up too much for the burial of the bodies.  As far as I know, the women from the town of Dachau did not participate in burying the bodies.  The Germans were ordered by the American military to dress up when they visited the camp.  Clothes were very hard to  get during World War II, even in America.  The idea was to have the German people ruin their best clothes as they buried the bodies; this was their punishment for allowing the prisoners to die in a typhus epidemic.

Men from the village of Dachau took the bodies in wagons to be buried

German civilians bury the Dachau bodies at Leitenberg

Mass graves at Leitenberg, near Dachau

Dachau prisoners were put to work loading the bodies at Dachau

Here is a final quote from John F. Floyd:

Hitler and Himmler paid special attention to the Jews, with the objective of eliminating all of them from Germany. What many people fail to realize is this is one goal Hitler achieved. Today, there are only 3,000 people of the Jewish faith living in Germany, out of a population of 80 million.

Even this part of the article is wrong.  There were 585,000 Jews in Germany when Hitler came to power; some books and web sites put the number of Jews in Germany even lower, down to 522,000.  The population of Germany is now close to 82 million. The number of Jews now in Germany is around 200,000, according to Wikipedia.