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November 5, 2015

Jews riding in boxcars — the exception that proves the rule

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 9:22 am
A railway car, shown in 2005, in the Paris suburb of Drancy commemorates the deportation of 76,000 Jews and others from France to Nazi concentration camps during World War II. (Jack Guez / AFP/Getty Images)

A railway car, shown in 2005, in the Paris suburb of Drancy commemorates the deportation of 76,000 Jews and others from France to Nazi concentration camps during World War II. (Jack Guez / AFP/Getty Images)

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

Do the Jews, and their descendants, who were forced to ride to Auschwitz in a boxcar deserve reparations — 70 years after their ordeal?

The news article implies that all the Jews had to ride in boxcars.  But there was at least one exception: Ruth Elias.

Ruth Elias, a survivor of Theresienstadt and Auschwitz, who wrote a book entitled Triumph of Hope, was one of several women who gave birth to a child at Auschwitz.

In her book, Ruth described Dr. Mengele as follows:

“Mengele was an attractive man. A perennial little smile showed the gap between his front teeth. Immaculately dressed in jodhpurs, he wore a cap bearing the SS insignia and carried the obligatory riding crop, constantly slapping it against his gleaming black boots.”

Whenever he [Dr. Mengele] spoke to me, he was very polite, giving the impression that he was interested in me. It was hard to believe that his little smile and courteous behavior were just a facade behind which he devised the most horrific murderous schemes.”

Ruth Elias and her husband had conceived a child while she was a prisoner in the Theresienstadt camp, and when she arrived at Birkenau on a transport of Czech prisoners in December 1943, she was three months pregnant.

Ruth passed several selections for the gas chamber even though she was obviously pregnant; she and her husband were both assigned to the Czech “family camp” where men, women and children lived together.

On July 11, 1944, after a selection made by Dr. Mengele, 3,000 prisoners in the Czech family camp, who were not considered fit to work, were allegedly sent to the gas chamber, but Ruth passed the selection even though she was in her eighth month of pregnancy.

On July 14, 1944, Ruth was sent, along with other female prisoners,  to Hamburg, Germany to work in clearing rubble from Allied bombing raids.

After only four days of working in Hamburg, Ruth Elias was escorted by an SS man, in a private compartment on a passenger train, to the infirmary at Ravensbrück, the women’s concentration camp near Berlin. From there, Ruth and Berta Reich, another prisoner who was nine months pregnant, were soon sent back to Auschwitz on another passenger train.

Ruth gave birth to a baby girl at Auschwitz, but Dr. Mengele cruelly ordered her to bind her breasts and not to nurse her child because he wanted to see how long it would take for a baby to die without its mother’s milk.

Mercifully, a woman dentist named Maca Steinberg, who was a prisoner at Auschwitz, obtained some morphine and gave it to Ruth so that she could inject her baby and end its life, after Ruth told her that Dr. Mengele was due to arrive the next morning to take Ruth and her child to the gas chamber.

Auschwitz personnel on holiday

Auschwitz personnel on holiday at Solahuette

Do the men and women in the photo above look like people who would gas a pregnant woman?


  1. you know the jews declared war on Germany first, and this was after their attempts to financially ruin German businesses after they degraded their culture. Nobody hates a group of people for no reason, you have to read to know why the Nazis developed a dislike for jews.

    Comment by Paul — December 22, 2017 @ 11:04 am

    • You wrote: “Nobody hates a group of people for no reason, you have to read to know why the Nazis developed a dislike for jews.”

      Why did the Nazis develop a dislike for the Jews?
      What’s not to like?

      Comment by furtherglory — December 25, 2017 @ 11:25 am

  2. Furtherrglory, HCW, The photo in post showing SS personel having great time is clearly product of the Goebbels propaganda vawe of 1944 aiming to keep Germans still willing to combat. In 1944 already Himmler and many other SS charges feared war end and tried to reach individual deals with Allied comands.

    Comment by Wolf MURNELSTEIN — November 7, 2015 @ 7:34 am

    • The photo, which is from a photo album called “The Auschwitz Album” is a product of the German love of cameras and their use of cameras. The best cameras in the world, at that time, were German cameras, including the famous Rolleiflex. Now the word Rolleiflex will got go through the wordpress spell checker.

      Comment by furtherglory — November 7, 2015 @ 8:14 am

    • I think the photo is genuine, Wolf. The men and women are on leave.

      Comment by HCW — November 7, 2015 @ 11:30 am

    • No doubt they are enjoying their time away from killing Jews. Everyone needs a vacation now and again.

      Comment by HCW — November 7, 2015 @ 11:40 am

  3. When you have a state religion of Holocaustianity as there is in the present German state with its constant calls for Germans to be always reminded of how evil they are,
    then you get a collective insanity among the people. Here the ” Linke ” party ( 10 % of the electorate )” support calls for “Volkstod ” ie death of the German people.

    Comment by peter — November 6, 2015 @ 5:32 pm


    not only Jews were sent in cattle wagons ; here are some Germans who wont be getting any compensation and are more likely to be moved again to accommodate all the Arabs moving to Germany,

    Comment by peter — November 6, 2015 @ 4:45 pm

  5. …obtained some morphine and gave it to Ruth so that she could inject her baby and end its life, after Ruth told her that Dr. Mengele was due to arrive the next morning to take Ruth and her child to the gas chamber.

    This sounds odd. Here is a news story about the same woman (from way back in 1998) — it relates basically the same story, but with a bit more detail:

    Ruth’s Choice: What A Holocaust Survivor Did To Survive — The Story Ruth Elias Didn’t Want To Tell Is The Story She Now Tells Over And Over — Her Book Is “Triumph Of Hope”

    Many years ago, when she was 22, she killed her newborn baby girl…What would you have done?…The story she recounted, in her book and in her talk, is chilling…Mengele selected her and the baby for one of his grisly medical experiments…

    The “experiment” is as described above. After it had been running some days, and even though the baby was still alive (I thought he wanted to know how long it would take the baby to die?), Mengele was coming to personally escort mother and baby to the gas chamber. The part about the morphine is there as well — she killed her baby because the other doctor would not.

    So they were apparently going to be gassed because as far as Mengele was concerned, the “experiment” was over. Her story continues:

    The next morning, Mengele came around and asked where was the infant…”She died last night”, Elias told him wearily. Mengele wanted to see the body. He looked in a huge pile of corpses but could not find it. When he came back, he told her, “You’re really lucky. You will leave Auschwitz on the next transport.”

    No comment.

    Comment by eah — November 5, 2015 @ 2:48 pm

  6. FURTHERGLORY: 1. The story that lady tells us in her book seems, at least, quite strange Indeed in the second FAMILIENLAGER at Auschwitz the inmates arrived from Theresienstad had been hold for six months until May 1944, not, July. I do not know how many inmates had been sent for forced labor elsewhere and how many had been murdered on the place. 3. The story about her travelling in passenger train escorted by an SS seems more a revisionist tale than the account of real survivor. 5. The photo of SS personel enjoing a nice holiday does prove their attitude: SS murders trained according to the Nazi hatred doctrine had funn in killing or torturing inmates, especially Jews. So they appeare laughing and dancing.
    I wonder who dictated that book?

    Comment by o — November 5, 2015 @ 12:07 pm

  7. These men are also smiling as they shave a Jew.

    So are these men as they kick a defenseless Jew on the ground.

    Comment by HCW — November 5, 2015 @ 10:33 am

    • In the second photo, it appears that an SS soldier is kicking a Jew while he is down. Someone put this same photo on Pinterest:

      In the photo on Pinterest, you can see that the SS soldier is NOT kicking the man on the ground. I have this same photo on my website somewhere, but I can’t find it right now.

      There are many photos that appear to show the SS soldiers abusing the Jews, but they are not. It is all in the angle of the photo.

      Comment by furtherglory — November 5, 2015 @ 12:22 pm

      • They look pretty happy that the man is laying on the ground. I don’t see either one attempting to help the poor gentleman up. They both have huge smiles on their faces.
        What should I take from this photo?

        Comment by HCW — November 5, 2015 @ 1:11 pm

      • There are also two other men in the background who also think what is happening is hilarious. They are easier to see on a Kindle.
        They are not rushing to the man on the ground to see if he is OK or help him up.
        How should I interpret their actions?

        Comment by HCW — November 5, 2015 @ 5:29 pm

        • You are assuming that the man on the ground has fallen down and that he desperately needs help, but the German soldiers won’t help him. I don’t see it that way. The man on the ground may have thrown himself on the ground for some kind of performance that is intended to be funny. There are many stories of Jews turning cartwheels, or doing some other performance, in order to save themselves from going to the gas chamber.

          Comment by furtherglory — November 6, 2015 @ 7:30 am

          • No, I’m not assuming that the man has fallen to the ground. From the postures of the two soldiers in front of him, looming over him, I’d say they have done something to him, or getting to do something to him. Their postures are threatening while his is defensive.
            You are really stretching to make these men seem non-abusive.

            Comment by HCW — November 6, 2015 @ 7:45 am

    • HCW
      Members of the SS in the first photo are clearly from an SS-Gendarme Unit, equivalent to Military Police (MP’s in the US Army) recognised by their dark green collars and shoulder patches, and normally did not participate in front line actions, rather responsible for security in occupied countries and partisan activities and showed no mercy!

      The second photo shows only one German soldier, it is difficult to recognize him as an SS-member, the others are foreign mercenaries in black uniform and are probably from Lithuania or some other Baltic country, hard to tell.

      Comment by Herbert Stolpmann — November 5, 2015 @ 5:59 pm

      • Thank you, that is helpful. I was wondering about the significance of the uniforms.

        Comment by HCW — November 5, 2015 @ 7:03 pm

  8. The people in the picture appear to be having a great time.
    So, why would this picture prove one way or another if the people photographed were capable of murder?
    The SS and their female auxiliaries didn’t have fangs or horns. Neither do serial killers, rapists, pedophiles, etc., etc.

    Comment by HCW — November 5, 2015 @ 10:14 am

  9. The movie “The Nazi Officer’s Wife” shows a Jewish woman deported from Austria to work on a farm in Germany riding back and forth in a PASSENGER (train) CAR, apparently with other (non-Jewish) passengers. Don’t know how common such things might have been, vis-a-vis what we constantly hear about.

    The movie itself may be susceptible to a revisionist interpretation.

    Comment by Jett Rucker — November 5, 2015 @ 9:50 am

  10. A railway car, shown in 2005, in the Paris suburb of Drancy

    Note the policewoman guarding the car — this is very common throughout Europe now for sites with a strong connection to Jews or Jewish history — the suburbs to the north of Paris, like Drancy, are notorious for having large, restive muslim populations (recall the ‘car-b-qs’ of a few years ago) — but it’s difficult to find demographic info about Drancy specifically, since in general the French do not officially keep track of such things as race, religion, ethnicity etc (“Liberté, égalité, fraternité”).

    A typical scene in front of the synagogue on Oranienburgerstrasse in Berlin:

    Comment by eah — November 5, 2015 @ 9:41 am

  11. Usually, WordPress does not let a comment get through if there is a link to something that has nothing to do with the subject of the blog post. In your case, you were allowed to promote your own blog, which has nothing to do with the subject of my blog post. I am in a good mood, so I will allow it.

    Comment by furtherglory — November 5, 2015 @ 9:35 am

  12. What the hell do looks have to do with anything? Ted Bundy didn’t look the part of a sadistic killer either. Maybe he is innocent after all…..

    Comment by guttermutt — November 5, 2015 @ 9:28 am

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