Scrapbookpages Blog

June 27, 2015

The British version of what happened at Bergen Belsen

I am blogging today about a news article, which I read this morning on the Internet:

The news article begins with this quote:

The survivor and the liberator: Two tales of the horror at Bergen-Belsen
As The Queen visits 70 years on, the notorious Nazi concentration camp is still in the minds of Captain Eric Brown and Rudi Oppenheimer

Captain Eric Brown was a British soldier, who was apparently in charge of the Belsen camp, after the camp was VOLUNTARILY turned over to the British because there was a typhus epidemic in the camp.

This quote is from the news article:

Begin quote

For Captain Eric Brown, it is the stench of Bergen-Belsen that remains with him 70 years on.

Capt Brown, 96, was already a legendary Royal Navy test pilot in 1945, and was at an airfield near Hanover assessing captured German aircraft the day before Belsen was liberated by [being voluntarily turned over to] the British.

Fluent in German, he [Captain Brown] was asked if he could spare just one day to help interrogate the commandant of the camp, SS Hauptsturmfuhrer Josef Kramer, and his assistant Irma Grese, both of whom were later hanged for war crimes.

He [Captain Brown] said: “When we arrived the camp guards were all lined up and they were handed over to us and in we went. While the brigadier went to find Kramer and Grese, I had a wander round. [Kramer and Grese had met the British at the gate into the camp and had volunteered their help. They had been immediately arrested and thrown into the camp prison.]

End quote

Joseph Kramer was immeditely arrested after he met the British at the gate and offered is help

Joseph Kramer was immediately arrested after he met the British at the gate and offered his help

Sign at the gate into Bergen Belsen warned that there was a typhus epidemic

Sign at the gate into Bergen Belsen warned that there was a typhus epidemic

The quote from the article continues with this statement by Eric Brown:

Begin quote

Then I went to the interrogation. Kramer was a stocky chap, he looked like a bully boy. He had come from Auschwitz, where his job had been to separate new arrivals into the ones that were to be worked to death and the ones that went straight to the gas chambers. [and you thought that it was Dr. Josef Mengele who decided who would be worked to death and who would die in the chamber.]

“I asked him [Kramer] if he would do it again if he had his time over again, and to my astonishment he said yes. [Did Kramer mean that he would serve his country, if he had to do it over again, or did he mean that he would send Jews to the gas chamber at Bergen-Belsen if he had it to do over again.]

“Irma Grese was probably the worst human being I have ever encountered. She also worked at Auschwitz and I asked her the same question I had asked Kramer. She refused to answer, but I kept asking it, and after I’d asked her four or five times she suddenly leapt to her feet, cried “Heil Hitler!” sat down and refused to answer any more questions.” [Bad Irma! She refused to incriminate herself.]

End quote

Josef Kramer looked like a

Josef Kramer looked like a “bully boy” but was probably not a bully

Irma Grese after she was capured by the British when she volunteered to help

Irma Grese after she was captured by the British when she volunteered to help

Few people would challenge a man who looked like Josef Kramer. I strongly suspect that he was not a “bully boy.”

On my scrapbookpages website, I wrote extensively about Bergen-Belsen.  On this page, I wrote about the camp being turned over to the British:

Bergen-Belsen — where homosexuals was (sic) interned by the Nazis …

Filed under: Dachau, Germany — Tags: — furtherglory @ 10:29 am

The title of my blog post today is a quote from a news article which you can read in full at:

This quote is from the news article, sited above:

Bergen-Belsen – where homosexuals was interned by the Nazis along with a number of other minority groups – was liberated by British troops 1945. Gay prisoners were not set free at the end of the Second World War, unlike other groups, and were made to serve out their sentences.


Approximately 50,000 served prison sentences as “convicted homosexuals”, and around 5,000 to 15,000 gay men were imprisoned in concentration camps across Germany and Nazi occupied countries. Many gay men were imprisoned by the allied authorities after the liberation of the concentration camps as homosexuality remained illegal.

Statue of the

Statue of the “unknown prisoner” at Dachau; the model for this statue was Kurt Lange, a homosexual

The statue created by Fritz Koelle, known as the “Unknown Inmate,” which is shown in the photo above, was erected at the Dachau memorial site in 1950. The statue is located just north of the old crematorium where the bodies of dead prisoners were burned.

The words on the base of the statue, shown above, when translated into English, mean “To honor the dead, to admonish the living.”

The model for the statue was Kurt Lange, a homosexual who had been imprisoned at Dachau.

Under a new German law, after the Nazis came to power, all criminals who had served two prison terms were sent to a concentration camp for at least six months of “rehabilitation.”

One category of German citizens, who were prosecuted persecuted by Heinrich Himmler, in his capacity as Chief of the German Police, was homosexuals.

Paragraph 175 of the German criminal code, which had been in effect since 1871, made it a crime for men to publicly engage in gay sex or for male prostitutes to solicit men for sex.

It is important to note that men were only arrested if they were having sex in public, or if they were soliciting men on the street. Some of the men who were sent to a concentration camp under this law were not homosexual; they were male prostitutes.

Himmler began enforcing Paragraph 175 and a total of about 10,000 homosexuals were eventually sent to concentration camps such as Dachau, Sachsenhausen and Mauthausen for at least 6 months of “rehabilitation.”  They received regular visits from the medical commissions, who attempted to change their sexual orientation because the Nazis believed that these prisoners were gay by choice.

The first homosexual prisoner to be registered at Mauthausen was Georg Bautler, Prisoner No. 130. The first Jew to be sent to Mauthausen was also incarcerated because he had broken the German law under Paragraph 175.