Scrapbookpages Blog

June 30, 2017

The killings in the gas chambers of Majdanek

Filed under: Holocaust, Uncategorized — furtherglory @ 11:20 am

The title of my blog post today is a quote from a comment made by Herbert Stolpmann, one of the readers of my blog.

Herr Stolopmann is German and he was alive during World War II. He has first-hand knowledge of what went on during that terrible time. He wrote the following in a comment on my blog.

Begin quote from comment by Herr Stolpmann

The killings in the gas chambers of Majdanek were held on the orders of Globocnik, who as already emphasized, often used the concentration camp Lublin for his own needs and made ​​it an important element of “Aktion Reinhardt”. The killings by gas was started probably in September 1942. They ended up in the first days of September 1943. The peculiarity in Majdanek in the application shows the use of two toxic gases. Carbon monoxide (CO) and Zyklon B (HCN). The use of carbon monoxide is evidence of the involvement of “Action Reinhardt” in Majdanek as a method of extermination. Zyklon B on the other hand of connection with the murder methods in the concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. In other words, it was either copied or instructed to be used, on orders of Globocnik.
The gas chambers were set up in a small brick building that was located directly behind the men’s wash-room (No. 41) and far away from the woman’s wash-room (No. 42). The building should have been originally a disinfections facility. During the construction work, probably in August 1942, small changes were made to make it into its new role, to adapt it, to kill people. The building had a protruding roof over it, to the original planned provision, protecting disinfected clothing against rain. However, while the use of the chambers was now intended to exterminate people, it served just as camouflage. The system consisted of four rooms: three chambers and a small annex, the cabin for the SS personnel, in which steel cylinders were stored with carbon monoxide. In the ceiling of one chamber was a shaft connected to an opening to pour the diatomaceous (Kieselgur) earth-bound gas. Apart from that, this chamber, as well as in the adjacent one, pipes were connected to the steel cylinders from the cubicle next to it. In both chambers people were killed by gas.

End quote

I have a large section about the gas chamber at Majdanek on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Poland/Majdanek/Majdanek02.html

Inside the Majdanek gas chamber

Majdanek gas chamber has a plate glass window inside it

I know what you are going to say: “What kept the victims from jumping out the window?” The Nazis weren’t stupid. They posted guards outside the window. If a prisoner tried to climb out, he was shot before he hit the ground. So why have a window? No one knows.

Upon entering Barrack No. 41, which is the gas chamber building, you first come to the bare, unfurnished undressing room which has narrow wooden boards over the concrete floor. Then you enter the shower room, a large room with rows of exposed water pipes and sprinkler-type shower heads on the ceiling; this room also has a wooden floor over concrete. At one end of the shower room, there are two large concrete bathtubs. My tour guide explained that the prisoners were not allowed to loll in the bathtub, but had to get in and out in a few seconds.

The bathtubs were probably filled with disinfectant, as was the case at other camps such as Buchenwald. This shower room was also used by incoming prisoners who were selected to work at Majdanek, which was a labor camp as well as an extermination camp for the Jews.

View of the gas chamber, as seen through an outside door into the room

When I visited the Majdanek camp, visitors were not allowed to enter the gas chamber room, shown in the photo above. There was a sign which said “No photos allowed” but my camera kept going off by accident. Fortunately, I was not arrested. I was prepared to plead innocent by reason of stupidity.

Building where gas chambers were located at Majdanek

The Majdanek gas chamber was located alongside a major road. The trees that you see in the background of the photo are on the other side of the road. Anyone going down this road could see the Jews lined up outside the gas chamber building, ready to be killed.

 

Name that tune

Filed under: Germany, movies, Music, World War II — furtherglory @ 9:32 am