Scrapbookpages Blog

May 28, 2015

The horror of death by gassing is revealed in the trial of Nazi perpetrator Oskar Groeing

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 9:55 am
Oskar Groening as a young man who worked as a bookkeeper at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Oskar Groening as a young man when he worked as a bookkeeper at the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp

The following quote is from a news article, which you can read in full here:

“Prosecutor Jens Lehmann described in detail in the indictment against [Oskar] Groening how the victims in the gas chamber were wedged so tightly together ‘that they could only be separated by axe blows’.”

I have read many accounts, written by the Sonderkommandos who had to remove the dead prisoners from the gas chambers, about how the bodies were piled up in the gas chambers after they had been gassed, but none of them ever mentioned that they had to separate the bodies with an axe.

This quote is also from the news article:

The trial of [Oskar Groening] a former SS guard has heard how the Nazis used a lethal pesticide [Zyklon-B] to slowly and painfully kill over one million victims of the Holocaust.

Oskar Groening, now 93, a former accountant at Auschwitz, is on trial in Luneburg, Germany, for his involvement in the deaths of 300,000 Hungarian Jews at a Nazi camp in Poland in 1944.

Today an expert delved into the horrendous properties of Zyklon-B gas, the pesticide used in the concentration camp death chambers.

Dr Sven Anders, 44, a coroner from the University Clinic of Hamburg-Eppendorf, told how Zyklon-B which ‘attacks the brain’, causes extreme pain, violent seizures and kills anyone who inhales it from cardiac arrest ‘within seconds’.

Dr Anders told how the gas was originally produced as a pesticide to cleanse large buildings like warehouses and barracks.

Note that the article does not mention that the Zyklon-B gas was also used to disinfect the clothing of the prisoners in an effort to prevent deaths from typhus which is spread by lice.
However, the reporter who wrote this article does get extra points for mentioning that the barracks of the prisoners were fumigated with Zyklon-B to kill the lice. The Nazis could have saved a lot of time and money by NOT fumigating the barracks, allowing the prisoners to die of typhus.
This surprising quote from the news article mentions that the prisoners were allowed to send postcards to their families:
At one previous hearing Max Eisen, a camp survivor who was deported to Auschwitz with his family when he was 15, described how people were given postcards to be sent to relatives saying they were working on a farm and life was good.
I had to do a google search to find out if it is really true that prisoners in the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau were allowed to send postcards. I found this information on my own website.
The following quote is from my scrapbookpages website:

The Czech prisoners from Theresienstadt were housed inside Aushwitz-Birkenau in a special “Family Camp,” surrounded by electrified barbed wire, where men, women and children were allowed to live in separate barracks, but inside the same enclosure. In two successive actions, according to information given by the Auschwitz Museum, the Jews in the Family Camp were gassed on March 3, 1944 and again on July 11 and 12, 1944.According to Ruth Elias, a prisoner in the family camp who wrote a book entitled Triumph of Hope, the prisoners in the Family Camp were instructed to send letters and postcards to friends and family members before they were gassed in the first action on March 3, 1944. These prisoners had arrived at Birkenau six months before they were killed.

So it turns out that the Nazis were not so bad, after all. They had the decency to allow some of the prisoners to send a postcard to their families to let them know that they were alright — before they were gassed to death.


  1. The head of the INTERNATION RED CROSS Berlin Office Dr. Roessel could visit at end of December 1943 the FAMILIENLAGER where he he certainly did not find evidences of Gas Chambers. Besides: Dr. Roessel was “very friendly minded to Nazi ideology” and was easily satisfied.

    Comment by Wolf Murmelstein — May 29, 2015 @ 1:29 am

    • You must be referring to Dr. Maurice Rossel, who made the famous inspection of Thereienstadt in 1944 and found no gas chamber.

      According to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, Dr. Rossel also toured Auschwitz and did not realize that it was a death camp. (Source: )

      Those clever Nazis had disguised the gas chambers at Auschwitz as crematoria, and Dr. Rossel was not able to see that they were really underground gas chambers.

      Comment by furtherglory — May 29, 2015 @ 7:18 am

      • Is this the same Red Cross rep that did the paper “A factual report by the Red Cross ” Geneva 1948 ? Report said they found to evidence of genocide. If this is why wasn’t the Red Cross called to give testimony during the trials? I don’t much care for the Red Cross ,but they are well established. Kinda hard to go against them when they’re making reports for humanitarian purposes

        Comment by Tim — May 29, 2015 @ 7:39 am

  2. FG. What’s up with the “Red Cross Report” ? It was presented in Geneva in ’48. Red Cross said they ain’t in line with the extermination story. Said they saw no evidence

    Comment by Tim — May 28, 2015 @ 2:56 pm

    • I looked up the Red Cross report and found the following quote at

      Begin quote

      In dealing with this comprehensive, three-volume Report, it is important to stress that the delegates of the International Red Cross found no evidence whatever at the camps in Axis- occupied Europe of a deliberate policy to exterminate the Jews. In all its 1,600 pages the Report does not even mention such a thing as a gas chamber. It admits that Jews, like many other wartime nationalities, suffered rigours and privations, but its complete silence on the subject of planned extermination is ample refutation of the Six Million legend. Like the Vatican representatives with whom they worked, the Red Cross found itself unable to indulge in the irresponsible charges of genocide which had become the order of the day. So far as the genuine mortality rate is concerned, the Report points out that most of the Jewish doctors from the camps were being used to combat typhus on the eastern front, so that they were unavailable when the typhus epidemics of 1945 broke out in the camps (Vol. I, p. 204 ff)- Incidentally, it is frequently claimed that mass executions were carried out in gas chambers cunningly disguised as shower facilities. Again the Report makes nonsense of this allegation. “Not only the washing places, but installations for baths, showers and laundry were inspected by the delegates. They had often to take action to have fixtures made less primitive, and to get them repaired or enlarged” (Vol.III, p. 594).
      End quote

      Note that the Red Cross report said that “it is frequently claimed that mass executions were carried out in gas chambers cunningly disguised as shower facilities.”

      It seems that the Red Cross did not inspect the crematoria and they did not know that the underground rooms, where bodies would normally be stored, were actually gas chambers where two thousand Jews could be gassed at one time. After the bodies were separated with an axe, they were carried to the ovens on the main floor of the crematorium.

      Comment by furtherglory — May 29, 2015 @ 7:33 am

      • If a person die because Typhoid Mary has been in the neighborhood , would burning them be a measure to take for just another way to combat the epidemic? If so then it makes sense to burn the bodies. They were sending jew Drs. to the front to treat the soldiers who came down with it. If these Drs. knew what was rumored to be going on with the gassing, wouldn’t they have said,”f**k you. You’re gassing our people,so I don’t give two shits if your soldiers die from typhus or not”

        Comment by Tim — May 29, 2015 @ 7:55 am

  3. The German expert Sven Ander had to anwer the Court question about the letal effects of Zyclon B and avoid any mention about any other use of it.

    Comment by Wolf Murmelstein — May 28, 2015 @ 12:15 pm

    • Sven Ander DID answer the question by stating other uses of it.

      This is what he said in court:
      Begin quote
      Dr Sven Anders, 44, a coroner from the University Clinic of Hamburg-Eppendorf, told how Zyklon-B which ‘attacks the brain’, causes extreme pain, violent seizures and kills anyone who inhales it from cardiac arrest ‘within seconds’.

      Dr Anders told how the gas was originally produced as a pesticide to cleanse large buildings like warehouses and barracks.
      End quote

      He mentioned that it was used to “cleanse large buildings”.

      He might also have mentioned that it was used to “cleanse” the clothing of the prisoners, but the reporter who wrote this did not quote that part of Sven’s testimony.

      Groening had nothing to do with the gassing of the prisoners; he was a bookkeeper in the camp.

      Groening’s lawyer should have protested on the grounds that this testimony was irrelevant.

      Comment by furtherglory — May 28, 2015 @ 1:14 pm

      • What happens if the chemical gets on your skin? I’m asking because they were totin the jews outta there with no protection. Would a person have to wear an NBC suit. Does it leave any residue behind at all. As far as this mans trial went,the Jewish version of
        “Jim Crow” was around for these trials .

        Comment by Tim — May 28, 2015 @ 2:53 pm

        • I wrote about the Sonderkommando Jews who carried the bodies out of the gas chamber on this blog post:

          Filip Müller’s book Eye Witness Auschwitz was “published in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum” in 1999, twenty years after the book was first published in 1979.

          In his book, he did not mention that the men who carried the bodies out of the “gas chamber” wore any special clothing. Filip Müller worked for three years in gas chamber in the main camp, carrying the bodies out and he never mentioned that he had to protect his skin from the poison gas that was on the bodies.

          Comment by furtherglory — May 29, 2015 @ 7:50 am

          • Was this fella another jew making up stories to make this whole thing believeable? I found a website (stormfront) that has a report from the company on the chemical . It said in the report about ventilation ( they were talking about venting a warehouse here ,but I imagine procedure is the same no matter size of building). “Start by opening windows in the front and go towards the back opening windows. Only work 10 to 15 minutes and then take a 30 minute break. Gas masks must be worn during this operation. Even after building is vented,gas masks must be kept available. The company said the breaks are vital to avoid chemical being absorbed through the skin”. This whole process seems to take s good while. Would that not slow down the eradication process there by cutting the 6,000,000 number way down?

            Comment by Tim — May 29, 2015 @ 8:32 am

  4. The Postcards the Nazis “permitted” to send to friends in Theresienstad had beeb meant to keep us calm, to make us think that Birkenau was another Ghetto; to hide the fact the it was instead another name for Auschwitz. The cloths of the prisoniers had to be disinfected for their use in Germany, For a Nazi showing kindness was only a trick to keep calm his victim before …. Clear.

    Comment by Wolf Murmelstein — May 28, 2015 @ 10:36 am

  5. Would a person exhibit any out ward symptoms if their flesh came in contact. You know. Kinda like the WW 1 soldiers get gas on their uniforms. No big deal. When they got back to their trench and warmed up,the would become lethal

    Comment by Tim — May 28, 2015 @ 10:08 am

    • The gas used in World War I was completely different from the Zyklon-B gas used to kill the Jews.

      This quote is from Wikipedia: “The types of weapons employed ranged from disabling chemicals, such as tear gas and the severe mustard gas, to lethal agents like phosgene and chlorine. This chemical warfare was a major component of the first global war and first total war of the 20th century. The killing capacity of gas was limited, with four percent of combat deaths caused by gas.”

      It is much harder to kill a louse than to kill a human.

      Comment by furtherglory — May 28, 2015 @ 10:16 am

      • FG
        Hitler was gassed during WW-i and blind for one year, he spent his convalescence in Pasewalk, where he heard of the collapse of the Second Reich, after the abdication of the Kaiser, and uttered allegedly to himself according to “Mein Kampf”: Und ich bescloss Politiker zu werden! (And I decided to become a politician)

        Comment by Herbert Stolpmann — May 28, 2015 @ 8:55 pm

        • Yes, I am familiar with the story of Hitler being gassed, but I didn’t know that he was blind for one year. I thought that he recovered within a few days.

          Comment by furtherglory — May 29, 2015 @ 7:39 am

          • I just now saw you answered my question. Sorry. Been up all night chasin cattle and I’m half asleep. Thank you

            Comment by Tim — May 29, 2015 @ 7:43 am

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