Today, I am answering a comment made on my blog at 2 o’clock in the morning [California time] by Wolf Murmelstein, who was a prisoner at Theresienstadt when he was a child.
In my humble opinion, I believe that Wolf was too young to understand what was going on at Theresienstadt, where his father, Benjamin Murmelstein, was the last Jewish Elder.
According to the Theresienstadt Ghetto Museum, in 1945, a homicidal gas chamber was built in a corridor of the town’s fortifications wall near the Litomerice gate, which is right by the Bauhof building, shown in the photograph above. (Click here to see a map of the ghetto. The Bauhof building is number 14 on the map.) According to Holocaust historian Martin Gilbert, this gas chamber was never “activated.”
Here is the comment, made by Wolf Murmelstein, with some corrections in English grammar, made by me:
Commenting on the [Holocaust denial] case of the old German woman [Ursula Haverbeck] convicted for neo-nazi propaganda, I have simply remembered how the aged Jews of Vienna had been driven to deportation in September 1942 and visitors present that Saturday afternoon had been selected to be deported too.
At Theresienstadt, the aged persons dwelled in the Kavalier barrack and also in many other buildings. Many passed away because of the bad conditions and also because of their advanced age.
However, in January 1945, Eichmann and his staff could see that the death rate had not been high enough, and in order to hasten the destruction of the Jewish inmates, they ordered to adapt, inside the wall around the camp, a room inside the wall, in a strange way without written design – only oral instructions — a room inside the wall.
My photo below shows the double wall around the camp.
Just as at the arrival, in December 1944, of a group from Slovakia, the first alarming news arrived, that the purpose of that room inside the [double] wall seemed to be for a dangerous purpose.
At a certain moment, the Elder Benjamin Murmelstein – after having left instructions for the inmates, in the case of his arrest – faced the German Commandant of the camp, Karl Rahm, who spoke vaguely about a bomb safe warehouse, but then left for Prague.
Commandant Rahm returned after three days with the order to stop the work which only SS General Karl Hermann Frank had the authority to give. The Commandant [Karl Rahm] had tried to reach a personal deal with the Allies and wanted to use Theresienstadt in his negotiations.
From a statement, made by SS Captain Heinrich Joeke in the People’s Court, the gas chamber at Theresienstadt had been built to exterminate the political prisoners in the camp.
It is noteworthy that Commander Karl Rahm, at his trial, did not mention his trip to Prague where he obtained the order of SS General Frank to stop work on the gas chamber, although the key witness Benjamin Murmelstein mentioned this.
I believe that he feared revenge on his family at Vienna when speaking about the responsibility of [Adolf] Eichmann and staff members who managed to escape at war’s end. So he spoke always about the phantom bomb safe warehouse.
It is noteworthy that not even Rahm spoke about delousing and similar nonsense. Indeed the Nazis considered the lice as a useful instrument for provoking mortal diseases, [such as typhus] among the inmates.
That old German Neo-nazi woman [Ursula Haverbeck] will certainly live better during her last years than the aged Jews who were deported to Theresienstadt.
Today, events in Paris [attacks by ISIS] show that laws, against Holocaust denial and other racist hatred spraying, ought to be harder. . .