Scrapbookpages Blog

July 28, 2015

Is there any standard at all for carrying oneself through a museum honoring 4.1 million lost souls?

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 8:07 am

My blog post today is a tribute to an excellent piece of writing, which I read this morning in the Irish Times online.

This is the headline of the article:

Travel Writer Auschwitz: “I remained ashamedly stoic, wondering ‘why did we come here?'”

Underneath a photo of the gatehouse at the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, I read this quote: “Is there any standard at all for carrying oneself through a museum honoring 4.1 million lost souls?”

I would like to make Kelly Konya, the author of the article, feel better by pointing out that it was not 4.1 million Jews who were murdered at Auschwitz — it was only 1.1 million people.  The number of 4 million, which was given at the International Nuremberg Trial of the German war criminals, was a gross exaggeration. The number has been officially cut down to 1.1 million, which includes 900,000 Jews, several thousand Gypsies and a few miscellaneous others.

The article includes an excellent photo of the Auschwitz-Birkenau gatehouse taken from an unusual angle.  I took the photo below on one of my three trips to the camp.

My 2005 photo of the Auschwitz-Birkenau gate house

My 2005 photo of the gate house entrance into the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp

This quote is from the article:

I knew that going to Poland for the sole purpose of seeing Auschwitz was problematic, and our roundabout trek from Kraków to the site underscored this fact. The woman at the airport gave us confused directions; the Starbucks barista put us on the wrong bus entirely. It was as if the town itself wanted to forget that the camps were there.

“the Starbucks barista”?  There was a time when the idea of a Starbucks, located anywhere near Auschwitz, would have been considered unthinkable.

This quote is also from the article:

The unexplainable attraction to sites of mass death or suffering is labeled “thanatourism,” or dark tourism. Ground Zero in New York City, the Dachau, Mathausen, and Terezin concentration camps, and the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum in Cambodia are only a few of such places that tourists flock to each year. Some psychologists believe the appeal of dark sites is hidden beneath a human desire to feel more alive. According to Dr. Philip Stone of the Institute for Dark Tourism Research, people feel anxious before visiting dark places, “and then better when they leave, glad that it’s not them.”

Whatever my reason for visiting Auschwitz, I did not leave feeling alive, nor did I satisfy any morbid intrigue. In fact, walking through Auschwitz left me feeling anything but full of life; instead, I felt demoralized and more alienated by humanity than ever before.

July 5, 2015

The “Ballerina of Auschwitz” is still alive and still kicking

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 9:41 am

I previously blogged about Edith Eger, the “Ballerina of Auschwitz” in this blog post:

Today, I read in this news article that Edith is still alive and still kicking — literally.

Edith Eva Eger

Edith Eva Eger at age 16, doing a split in a bathing suit

This quote is from the news article, cited above:

Meet Edith Eva Eger, the “Ballerina of Auschwitz,” and hear her inspirational story firsthand at a July 14 event to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II.

A black-and-white photo shows the 16-year-old ballerina at her prime, mere months before her world would be destroyed.

She is dressed in a bathing suit, smiling while performing a gymnastic split. Eger says the portrait was taken by her first teenage crush: a Jewish boy named Imre. He, like so many others, would not survive the Holocaust.

“I had my 17th birthday in Auschwitz,” Eger said.

I also wrote about Edith in this previous blog post:

Edith Eger was liberated from Gunskirchen, which I wrote about in this previous blog post:

June 11, 2015

A reporter’s recent trip to Auschwitz

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 11:21 am
Auschwitz-Birkenau camp is now in ruins

My 2005 photo of Auschwitz-Birkenau camp shows that the camp is now in ruins

Alert: The first “hate speech” and “Holocaust denial” case is being tried in Montana now:

The following quotes are from a news article, headlined “Lessons from Auschwitz,” which you can read in full here.

Globe senior reporter Emma Rigby accompanied teachers from Wirral to the Nazi concentration camps as part of a project aimed at giving them a fresh insight into the horror that occurred there, enhancing their teaching of the Holocaust and helping to make sure it never happens again.

This quote from the news article amazed me:

As we made our way around Auschwitz I, we were taken into what remains of the crematorium. We stood where 70,000 people died.

In the quote above, the reporter was obviously referring to the morgue in the main Auschwitz camp, not to the crematorium where the bodies of the Jews were burned. In the kosher version of the Holocaust, the morgue was a gas chamber where 70,000 Jews were gassed, and there was no morgue to store the bodies until they could be burned.

I blogged about the Arbeit Macht Frei sign on this previous blog post;

This quote is also from the news article:

Walking through the iron gates of Auschwitz I, I looked up and saw the infamous phrase “Arbeit macht frei”  – “Work will set you free”.

At that point, I knew that what I was about to see would be worse than I could have ever imagined because for those who were taken Auschwitz-Birkenau – made up of three separate main camps Auschwitz I, Birkenau and Monowitz and dozens of satellite camps – work certainly did not set them free.

Here is another quote from the news article:

The Holocaust was not carried out in secret. There were those who are known as “bystanders” who did exactly that.

Sorry, but I beg to differ. I believe that the “bystanders” stood by and did nothing because they didn’t know about the Holocaust until several years after the war.

I wrote about the citizens of Dachau, who were bystanders on this blog post:

I wrote about how the citizens of Dachau were punished for being “bystanders” on this  blog post:

I also wrote about the citizens of Dachau at

This quote is also from the news article:

Homes which existed before the construction of Birkenau are visible from the guard tower. And those living within several miles would have been able to see and smell the fumes from the crematoria.

On my two trips to Auschwitz-Birkenau, I climbed  up on the tower of the gate house, and looked out over the camp. I don’t know of any other guard tower that tourists are allowed to climb at Birkenau. I could not see any homes from the guard tower. The distance from the guard tower to any homes, that might have been built recently, is over a mile.

My photo of the Mexico section of Auschwitz shows houses very nearby

My photo of the Mexico section of Auschwitz-Birkenau shows houses very nearby (click on the photo to enlarge)

When I was at Auschwitz-Birkenau in 2005, there was a sign that said that 7 small villages had been torn down to make room for the 425 acre camp. There were no houses that were visible in 2005. I believe that the houses, which this reporter saw, have been built recently.

June 8, 2015

Recent escape from an American prison brings back memories of an escape from Auschitz

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 10:41 am
This photo of the gate into the Auschwitz main camp accompanies the news story

This photo of the gate into the Auschwitz main camp accompanies a news story about prison escapes

A newspaper article about a recent prison escape in America, which you can read in full here has brought back memories of a daring escape from Auschwitz, pulled off by two prisoners, Alfred Wetzler and Rudolf Vrba, in April 1944.

The news article about the American prison escape included this quote about Wetzler and Vrba:

Alfréd Wetzler’s escape from Nazi death camp Auschwitz is possibly the most important prison escape in history.

Wetzler, a Slovakian jew, escaped from Auschwitz [Birkenau] with fellow inmate Rudolf Vrba in April 1944 by hiding in a wood pile that other inmates soaked with tobacco and gasoline to fool guard dogs.

After four nights hiding among the wood, the two men donned stolen suits and overcoats and began a 80 mile journey to the Polish border with Slovakia.

In his pockets, Wetzler carried a report on the inner workings of the death camp, including a ground plan, details of the gas chambers, and a label from a canister of Zyklon B – the gas that the Nazi’s used to kill millions of inmates. It was the first detailed report about Auschwitz that the Allies regarded as credible, and led to the bombing of buildings that housed Nazi officials who dealt with the railway deportations.

120,000 Hungarian Jews are said to have been saved as a result.

Rudolf Vrba (real name Alfred Rosenberg)

Rudolf Vrba (real name Alfred Rosenberg)

I wrote about Rudolf Vrba on this previous blog post:

Scroll down, in reading my previous post about Vrba; the part about him is near the end.

Before I knew anything about the Holocaust, I read a book about Vrba and his famous escape from Auschwitz-Birkenau. I was amazed by his stories of life in Auschwitz.  He was living such a good life there, that I couldn’t understand why he escaped.  His motive in leaving the good life at Birkenau was apparently that he wanted to tell the truth lies about Birkenau.

Child survivors marching out of the Birkenau death camp after it was liberated

Child survivors marching out of the Birkenau death camp after it was liberated

The photo above is a still shot from a film made by the Soviet liberators of Auschwitz about 4 weeks after the camp was liberated. The children in front are wearing adult uniforms. The children at Auschwitz did not wear uniforms. Look at the chubby cheeks of the children; how did that happen in a death camp?

June 1, 2015

The Oskar Gröning trial exposes the banality of evil that was the Holocaust

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 8:21 am

A news article in The Daily Beast, which you can read in full here, starts off with this quote:

The trial of the SS bookkeeper from Auschwitz exposes not only the banality but the bean-counting that was integral to the Holocaust.

The term “banality of evil” was a term made famous by Hannah Arendt, who reported on the trial of Adolf Eichmann. Now the term is being used to describe the crime committed by Oscar Gröning, who counted the money taken from the Jews at Auschwitz.

Hungarian Jews arriving at Auschwitz-Birkenau where Oskar Groening  was collecting  the luggage

Hungarian Jews arriving at Auschwitz-Birkenau where Oskar Groening was collecting the luggage

This quote is from the news article:

Shortly after he arrived, Gröning was assigned to supervise the luggage collection from incoming transports. Gröning, responsible for counting the money and shipping it to Berlin headquarters, has spoken at the trial about his impressions: “You would be surprised to know with how many valuables the Jews arrived there.” As testimony from survivors makes clear, they had brought as much of their wealth as they could in the deluded hope they might thus save their lives.

Gröning’s crime was that he counted the money that the Jews had brought with them in the hope that they might be able to buy their way out a death camp.

But that was not the worst crime that Oskar committed.

This quote from the article describes his worst crime at Auschwitz.

He says, “there were people who made themselves comfortable with silk sheets to sleep in… Whatever the Jews brought with them.” Gröning soon learned to spot who had money and who did not. “With the travelling Poles there was nothing to be found,” he recalled, “but the Hungarian, we knew, had big bacon.”

Can you believe this? Oskar Gröning admits that he stole silk sheets from the luggage of the rich Hungarian Jews, and slept on those sheets himself. For that crime, he deserves life without parole, but because of his advanced age, he will probably not serve any prison time for this great crime.

But forget all that. This quote from the article reveals the worst crimes at Auschwitz:

In another example that demonstrates his incapacity to contextualize, Gröning told Fuchs [the prosecuting attorney] how he was helping fellow SS men find escaped prisoners when he arrived at a barracks. There he witnessed an SS man throwing Zyklon B, the gas used for mass killing, down a chute. Inside he heard cries that became louder until suddenly they stopped. When Fuchs asked him why the death of a baby bothered him, but not the many in the gas chambers, Gröning explained: “For me, it was no different from what was happening at the front. What happened in Auschwitz, I thought was right. That’s what I was taught from the age of ten onward.” Only having to witness the excesses, the bashing to death of an infant, was too much for him. That’s why he repeatedly asked for the transfer.

Did you catch that? Besides witnessing the bashing of a baby to death, Oskar also witnessed an SS man throwing Zyklon-B into a barracks building to disinfect the building. The Nazis were trying to save lives by using Zyklon-B to kill the lice that spread typhus.

This quote is also from the news article:

The trial of the SS bookkeeper from Auschwitz exposes not only the banality but the bean-counting that was integral to the Holocaust.

Week after week the German court reveals in graphic detail the smoothly run murder machinery behind “the final solution,” the Nazi effort to exterminate Europe’s Jews.

End of Story.

“—that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

[John Keats Ode to a Grecian Urn]

March 7, 2015

The Holocaust Trust version of Holocaust history

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — furtherglory @ 3:32 pm

This quote is from an article in the Huddersfield Daily Examiner, which you can read in full here.

“For 16 years, the Holocaust Education Trust (HET) has been running trips to Auschwitz, the extermination camp where 1.2m innocent people were murdered simply because they didn’t fit narrow Nazi ideals.”

The official number of deaths at Auschwitz is now 1.1 million, down from 4 million, which was claimed for years. But it never hurts to add another 100,000 or so victims, just in  case.

The article also contains these claims:

1. Auschwitz played a leading role in the Holocaust where six million Jews and five million Slavs, Gypsies, homosexuals, disabled people and political enemies were massacred by Hitler’s genocidal regime.

2. the Polish town of Oswiecim.

The name (pronounced ‘oshee-entsim’) was once a regular town with 8,000 Jews comprising the majority of its population.

3. In 1939, it was occupied by the Nazis and renamed Auschwitz as part of the party’s ‘Lebensraum’ (living space) policy.

4. Oswiecim was purged of its Jewish population.

5. In a cemetery a short distance from the Oswiecim’s attractive main square we learn that Jewish gravestones were removed and used as paving stones, our HET guide Martin Winstone says. Hitler was determined to erase the Jewish race from the past as well as the present.

Jewish headstones used to pave roads

Jewish headstones used to pave roads

6. the headstones which were returned to the cemetery after the war.

Auschwitz main camp Photo Credit: José Ángel López

Auschwitz I camp in winter  Photo Credit: José Ángel López

7. Auschwitz I where the genocide began in 1940.

Arbeit Macht Frei sign on the Auschwitz I gate

Arbeit Macht Frei sign on the Auschwitz I gate

8. [the Arbeit macht Frei sign] means ‘work makes you free’ and was presumably intended as a sick joke; no prisoner was supposed to leave Auschwitz alive.

The Arbeit Macht Frei sign was only put on gates into camps that were Class I camps, where prisoners had a chance to be released.

Block 11 on the right where prisoners were given a trial before being shot at the black wall shown in the center

Block 11 on the right where prisoners were given a trial before being shot at the black wall

Prisoners were taken to the Black Wall and executed after a trial.

9. the jail and punishment block [Block 11] where inmates were tortured and given a kangaroo hearing before being taken out and shot at the ‘death wall’ [black wall].

Jews sent to the left to be killed

Jews sent to the left to be killed

10. Those deemed unfit, including elderly people and children, would be sent left to the gas chambers [at Auschwitz-Birkenau].

End of quotes from the news article.

Now you know the true facts of the Holocaust, dear readers.  Don’t try to deny any of this or you might go to prison for 5 years for “Holocaust denial” which is a crime in 19 countries.



January 13, 2015

Holocaust survivor tells students about a concrete “selection platform” at Auschwitz

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , , , — furtherglory @ 9:10 am

Today, I am blogging about a news article, which you can read in full here.  The following quote is from the article, which was written by Tom Morton:

Eva [Moses] Kor and a hundred others stood sleepless for four days while riding a cattle car through eastern Europe in the spring of 1944.

When the train stopped, 10-year-old Eva found a crack in the wall, peeked through and still couldn’t figure out where she was, she told an assembly at Natrona County High School on Tuesday.

The girl from a small village in Romania was about to endure horrors that taught her lifelong lessons of survival and even more powerful lessons of forgiveness.

The doors to the cattle cars opened.

Eva, her twin sister Miriam, parents and other family members were hustled to an 85-foot by 35-foot concrete slab known as the “selection platform,” Kor said.

That platform served as the entrance to the Auschwitz (the Germanic word for the nearby town of [Auschwitz] Oswiecim, in occupied Poland) concentration camp where hundreds of thousands of families were torn apart and killed by the Nazis from 1940 to 1945.

Excellent photo of Auschwitz gate taken by Tom Morton

Excellent photo of Auschwitz gate taken by Tom Morton

A guard looked at her and Miriam, and asked her mother if they were twins. After her mother said yes, guards set the twins aside and hauled the rest of her family to their deaths.

Eva and her sister received identifying tattoos on their left arms and spent much of the next year surviving the examinations and experiments of Dr. Joseph Mengele.

The location of the Judenrampe was opened up to tourists in January 2005. I visited the location in 2005 and took some photos.

My 2005 photo of the Judenrampe, where prisoners got off the train at Auschwitz

My 2005 photo of the Judenrampe, where prisoners got off the train at Auschwitz

Original boxcar which brought Jews to Auschwitz

Original boxcar which brought Jews to Auschwitz

You can see more photos and read about the Judenrampe on my website at

Dr. Josef Mengele, who did selections for the gas chamber at Aushwitz

Dr. Josef Mengele, who did selections for the gas chamber at Auschwitz

Dr. Josef Mengele arrived at Birkenau in early May 1943, just at the time that the second typhus epidemic at Birkenau was starting. Mengele himself contracted typhus while he was at Birkenau.

The following quote is from my website:

The first systematic selection for the gas chambers at Birkenau was made when a transport of Jews arrived at Auschwitz on July 4, 1942. The train stopped a short distance from the Auschwitz train station at a wooden platform called the “Judenrampe,” where the selection process took place. The Jews who were considered fit to work were marched to the Auschwitz main camp, which was close to the Judenrampe. There they were given a shower, their heads were shaved, a number was tattooed on their left forearm, and a registration card was made for them.

The Judenrampe was close to the Auschwitz train station, and also close to the main Auschwitz camp, the entrance of which is shown in Tom Morton’s photo above.

When I visited the location of the Judenrame in 2005, there was no display which mentioned that the ramp was made of concrete.

The only other Holocaust survivor, that I know of, who said that the ramp was made of concrete was Philip Riteman.

This quote, which mentions Philip Riteman, is from my website:

The Judenrampe was used from February 1942 until the first of May 1944. At the end of April 1944, the extermination of the Jews from Hungary began. By that time, a railroad spur line had been extended inside the camp, all the way to the gas chambers in Krema II and Krema III.

One of the first prisoners to arrive at the ramp was Philip Riteman who told a group of students at Annapolis Regional Academy in Nova Scotia in May 2007 the following about his trip to Auschwtz-Birkeanu:

After a week, the train comes to a stop along a huge platform, a mile long and four to five hundred feet wide.

“I see a big sign ‘Work makes you free.’ Auschwitz-Birkenau. I never heard of it. I didn’t know even of its existing.”

Riteman overestimated the size of the platform, which was actually about 500 yards long and 3 to 4 yards wide, according to the Auschwitz Museum. In another speech to another group of students, Riteman said that the platform was made of concrete. The ramp was near the main Auschwitz camp, but the sign over the gate that reads “Arbeit Macht Frei” was not visible from the ramp. Riteman told another group of students that the words “Arbeit Macht Frei” were on signs held by Auschwitz inmates at the ramp.

Why is all of this important? It is important because 1.5 million people per year now visit Auschwitz. This is the same number of people who were killed at Auschwitz, according to the information at the monument at Auschwitz-Birkenau.  These tourists deserve to know the truth.

Photo of children who survived Auschwitz

Photo of children who survived Auschwitz shows Miriam Moses on the far right

Another photo of child survivors with one of the Kor twins on the far right

Another photo of child survivors with Eva Moses Kor on the far right

One has to get up pretty early in the morning to get a good photo of the Auschwitz “Arbeit macht Frei” gate.

I took the photo below, very early in the morning, before all the tourists arrived.

Arbeit macht Frei gate at Auschwitz.

Arbeit macht Frei gate at Auschwitz.

December 5, 2014

Holocaust survivor who survived Auschwitz and the Allied bombing of the Melk sub-camp of Mauthausen

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 10:44 am
Allison Bradshaw — THE BATTALION Al Marks shared his experience in the Holocaust at a lecture series by Texas A&M Hillel on Wednesday.

Allison Bradshaw — THE BATTALION
Al Marks shared his experience in the Holocaust at a lecture series by Texas A&M Hillel on Wednesday.

Click on the photo above to enlarge.

You can read about Holocaust survivor Al Marks in this news article:

The following quote is from the news article:

Al Marks, who survived four Holocaust concentration camps between ages 13 to 15, visited the Texas A&M campus Wednesday as a part of the Texas A&M Hillel Holocaust Survivor Lecture Series. Marks told his story of survival, hope and life in the camps. […]

“My mother was standing next to me. And she was motioned to my right and that was the last time I saw my mother. And I was motioned to the left,” Marks said.

Marks said he knew what was happening when he and his parents were separated.

“I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye or hug her. We knew what that meant just by reading because all the people who went on the other side they were sent to a room that they could shower. But instead of showering gas came out…so that was Auschwitz,” Marks said. […]
“After I was separated not to go to the gas chamber immediately…we were sent to Melk,” Marks said. “Ironically Melk was bombed by the American Air Force shortly after I got there on July 8, 1944. We lost over 600 people. All these horrible dates talking about it — it didn’t only happen to the Jewish prisoners — it happened to everybody that was there.”

The Melk prison camp which was a sub-camp of Mauthausen

The Melk prison camp which was a sub-camp of the Mauthausen concentration camp

Hitler passing through the town of Melk in Austria

Hitler passing through the town of Melk in Austria

There were 10,000 prisoners working in the Melk sub-camp of Mauthausen, according to the confession of the Commandant of the Mauthausen camp.

Note that there were over 600 prisoners killed by bombs dropped from American Air Force planes.  Melk was bombed because it had munitions factories where Jews and other prisoners worked.

Note that Al Marks was between the ages of 13 and 15 when he was a prisoner of the Nazis. Once again, Dr. Josef Mengele screwed up and waved him to the side that was saved from the gas chamber, when he arrived at Auschwitz at the age of 13.  According to accepted Holocaust history, children under the age of 15 went straight to the gas chamber, hours after they had arrived at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

October 15, 2014

My comments on Bill O’Reilly’s book “Killing Patton”

I am not using the word “review” in my blog post about Bill O’Reilly’s latest book, which is entitled Killing Patton, because this is not a review, but rather a complaint. I am a big fan of Bill O’Reilly’s TV show; I have watched the show faithfully every night, since the show started many year ago. I previously blogged about Bill O’Reilly at

I was very disappointed in O’Reilly’s book, which has gotten mostly good reviews, as far as I know. However, one review, which you can read at claims that Patton was not killed by the Soviets, but died from his injuries in a vehicle accident.

I received my copy of the book last night, delivered to my front door by UPS, at around 5 p.m., a day early.  I eagerly tore open the box and started thumbing through the book, looking for the most interesting parts.  The book starts off with the details of Patton’s death, which I already know.  I skipped over to Chapter 14 which is about Auschwitz.

Why is there a detailed section about Auschwitz in a book about General Patton?  Did Patton ever go to visit any of the three Auschwitz camps?  Not that I know of.  The only camps that Patton ever visited were Buchenwald and Ohrdruf, a sub-camp of Buchenwald.

I wrote about Patton’s visit to Ohrdruf  on this blog post:

On the blog post, cited above, I wrote that the reason that Eisenhower went to visit the Ohrdruf camp, and no other, is because there were rumors that the Germans had tested an atomic bomb near the camp.  The testing of an atomic bomb near Ohrdruf was only briefly mentioned in O’Reilly’s new book.

In the book Killing Patton, the section about Auschwitz is very large, too large for a book about Patton, who had absolutely nothing to do with Auschwitz. I know that O’Reilly is not Jewish, but what about Martin Dugard?  I had to do an extensive search on him before I decided that he is also not Jewish.  So why the huge, detailed section about Auschwitz? The Holocaust and Auschwitz are covered in 20 pages in two chapters, yet important information is left out.

The part about Auschwitz starts on page 173 with these words:

January 26, 1945, 1 a.m.

The earth convulses as Krema V explodes.

How many of O’Reilly’s readers will know what Krema V was? Krema is the German word for crematorium. How many of O’Reilly’s readers will know that Krema V was one of the two above-ground crematorium buildings at Auschwitz-Birkenau which had shower rooms that were allegedly gas chambers in disguise?  Holocaust deniers claim that Krema V was a crematorium which had shower rooms for the prisoners, not gas chambers.

The alleged gassing of the Jews in Krema V had stopped in October 1944, and the prisoners had been marched out of the camp on January 18, 1945.  Yet someone was blowing up Krema V on January 26, the day before the Soviet soldiers arrived to liberate those prisoners who had stayed behind.  According to the book Killing Patton, the prisoners were not marched out of the camp until January 26, the day before the Soviets arrived.

The first words in Chapter 14, about Auschwitz-Birkenau, continue with this quote:

Tongues of flame turn the coal-black winter sky bright red. Nazi guards watch the inferno intently, but only for a long as it takes to know that the destruction is complete, and there will be no need to place another round of dynamite charges.  The grisly evidence is now destroyed.

This implies that the SS men at Auschwitz waited, until 8 days after the prisoners had marched out of the camp, to blow up the evidence of gassing.  Isn’t that just like the German people?  Never planning in advance, but instead, waiting until the last minute to do something that was so important.

Ruins of Krema V at Auchwitz-Birkenau

Ruins of Krema V at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Krema IV at Auschwitz was similar in design to Krema V

Krema IV at Auschwitz was similar in design to Krema V

Before starting to read the book, I went to and read some of the 721 reviews of the book.

I used the Find feature to find out what the readers had said about “Auschwitz.” Not one of the 721 reviews had mentioned the word Auschwitz.

I skimmed through the text to find the word Gleiwitz. Prisoners from the Auschwitz III (Monowitz) camp were marched toward Gleiwitz, but Gleiwitz was not mentioned in the text of O’Reilly’s book. Prisoners from Auschwitz-Birkenau were marched towards Wodzislaw, which is also not mentioned in the book.

This quote is from my own website:

On January 18, 1945, the three Auschwitz camps, called Auschwitz I, II and III, and the 40 satellite camps were abandoned by the Germans. The gassing of the Jews at Auschwitz II, also known as Birkenau, had stopped at the end of October 1944. The evacuation of the Birkenau survivors to other concentration camps in the West had already begun in early October. Anne Frank and her sister Margo were on one of the first transports out of Auschwitz, which took them to Bergen-Belsen, where they both died of typhus. Aerial photos taken by the Allies showed that the roofs of crematoria buildings Krema II and Krema III at Birkenau had been removed in November 1944, so that the cremation ovens could be removed by cranes. […]

According to Danuta Czech, who wrote a book entitled Auschwitz Kalendarium, the total count from the last roll call on January 17, 1945 was 67,012 prisoners in all three Auschwitz camps.

According to Otto Frank, the father of Anne Frank, the prisoners were given a choice between staying in the camps until the Soviet troops arrived or going on a 50-kilometer fast hike through two feet of snow to the border of the old German Reich where they would be put on trains and taken to camps in Germany. This was a “death march” with those who couldn’t keep up being shot and left alongside the road, including SS guards, according to a survivor. Those who were too young, too old or too sick to march were left behind. The VIP prisoners, a group of famous scientists and intellectuals, were also left behind.

Elie Wiesel, the most famous survivor of the Holocaust, was in a hospital at Monowitz, recovering from an operation on his foot, when he chose to join the march out of the camp, and eventually ended up at the Buchenwald camp.

In his book entitled Night, Elie Wiesel wrote the following regarding his decision to join the Germans on the march out of Auschwitz:

Begin quote:  The choice was in our hands. For once we could decide our fate for ourselves. We could both stay in the hospital, where I could, thanks to my doctor, get him (his father) entered as a patient or nurse. Or else we could follow the others. “Well, what shall we do, father?” He was silent. “Let’s be evacuated with the others,” I told him.  End quote

Around 60,000 prisoners chose to go with the Germans and many of them didn’t survive the march. Those who couldn’t keep up were shot and their bodies were left in the snow. Many more died on the trains taking them to Dachau, Buchenwald, Bergen-Belsen or Mauthausen. Otto Frank chose to stay in the camp and he survived.

There were 611 children in the Birkenau camp who stayed behind when the camp was evacuated on January 18, 1945. According to Danuta Czech, the evacuation began in the early morning hours when 500 women with children were escorted out of the camp by SS guards. They reached Wodzislaw on January 21st. The men arrived the next day and all were loaded onto open box cars and taken to Germany.

The prisoners at Monowitz and all the prisoners in the sub-camps marched to the four concentration camps at Gleiwitz near the German border, arriving on January 21st. They were then taken on trains to Buchenwald, Dachau, Sachsenhausen or Mauthausen.

There were 4,428 women and girls and 169 boys who stayed behind. Around 2,000 prisoners were left behind in the men’s camp at Birkenau; there were around 1250 men in the main camp who did not join the march out of the camp and 850 who chose to stay behind at Monowitz.

This quote from Killing Patton is on page 173:

The [Auschwitz-Birkenau] prisoners are ordered to march. Their destination is unclear, but the road soon takes them past the train station [in the town of Auschwitz] where they first entered this hellhole, and then on to the commandant’s lavish house.  They are leaving Birkenau, though they know not why.

Wait a minute! The prisoners don’t know why they are leaving Auschwitz?  The Soviet liberators were on their way, but the prisoners have not been told this?  They have not been told that they have a choice: they can join the march out of the camp, or stay put until the Soviet soldiers arrive.

Why were the prisoners being taken to the Commandant’s “lavish house” which was located just outside the Auschwitz I main camp? Did the Commandant want to wave goodbye to them? No, Commandant Rudolf Hoess was at Birkenau, organizing the march out of the camp.

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think that the Commandant’s lavish house would have been seen by the marching prisoners BEFORE they saw the train station, which was farther away from the Birkenau camp.

The photo below shows the “lavish house” where Commandant Hoess lived with his family, just outside the main Auschwitz camp.


This quote from Killing Patton indicates that the prisoners were marched from the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp to the main camp, aka Auschwitz I:

Now, as the SS men prod the prisoners through the snow, moving them to another section […] those child prisoners unwilling or unable to walk the mile from the Birkenau section of the camp to the main camp are immediately shot dead.

Actually, it was more than a mile from the Birkenau camp to the main camp, but this is only a minor error. The important point is that child prisoners were allegedly shot if they couldn’t walk to the main camp.  Why did they have to walk to the main camp? The way I heard it, the prisoners marched out of the Birkenau camp to the German border where they were put on trains and taken to camps in Germany.  German soldiers led the way, tramping down the snow for the women and children.  Many survivors mention the fact that German soldiers were leading the way, and that there was a sag wagon for the women and children to ride for awhile if they became too tired to walk.

On the next page of the book, there is a photo which has the caption: “The entrance to Auschwitz.”

Photo of the alleged entrance into Auschwitz-Birkenau

Photo of the alleged entrance into Auschwitz-Birkenau

Survivors leaving the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp after being liberated

Survivors leaving the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp after being liberated

Compare the two photos above.  The first photo, which is shown in O’Reilly’s book, has the pedestrian gate on the right hand side, but the photo of the prisoners leaving the camp shows the pedestrian gate on the left hand side.  This is because the first photo does NOT show the ENTRANCE into the Birkenau camp, but rather the INSIDE of the camp.   This mistake is frequently made, but O’Reilly should have had some fact checkers reviewing the book before it was published.

My 2005 photo of the entrance into Auschwitz-Birkenau

My 2005 photo of the entrance into Auschwitz-Birkenau shows the pedestrian gate on the left side

I wrote about the location of the Commandant’s house, just outside the main Auschwitz camp, on  this blog post:

Moving right along to page 175, we find this quote from O’Reilly’s book:

But even now, when their thoughts are filled with plans to escape, the SS cannot stop themselves from killing.  It has become a way of life for them over the past few years, as routine as eating breakfast. They have shot thousands by lining them up against the notorious “Black Wall,” as the firing squad barrier next to the medical experiments building is known.

Do the authors of this book think that no one will bother to look up the term “Black Wall” on the Internet?  If anyone does a search on the “Black Wall” they might find this quote from this page of  my website

It was in front of this black wall that political prisoners, mostly Polish resistance fighters, who had been convicted by the Gestapo Summary Court, were executed. These prisoners were brought to the Auschwitz I camp, but were not registered as inmates; they were housed in dormitory rooms on the first and second floors of Block 11 while they awaited trial in a courtroom set up in the building. After they were convicted, the prisoners were taken to a small washroom in the building where they were ordered to strip naked, after which they were marched to the wall in groups of three and executed with one shot to the neck at close range. Some of the prisoners, who were sent here, were Czech resistance fighters from the Gestapo prison at the Small Fortress in Theresienstadt.

A photo of a painting of the “Black Wall” is shown below.

The "Black Wall" at the Auschwitz main camp where convicted crimals were execute after a trial

The “Black Wall” at the Auschwitz main camp where convicted criminals were execute after a trial

On page 208 of the book, we find the photo below.

Photo of General Patton on page 208 of O'Reilly's book.

Photo of Patton on page 208 of O’Reilly’s book.

I have the same photo on my website at

I purchased an original copy of this photo in an antique shop several years ago. The un-cropped photo was in a frame that was 11 by 14 inches. The photo included more of the picture, which is not shown in my photo, nor in the cropped version in O’Reilly’s book.

I took the photo, which I had purchased, to a photo shop, where I had it reprinted in a sepia tone, and cropped to show only the important part. I can tell you that the original photo was not taken at close range, but from a distance.  The photo that O’Reilly used has also been cropped.

The version of the photo, in O’Reilly’s book, has no photo credit, but the same cropped photo, that he used in the book, is advertised for sale on e-bay for $2,500.  There might be a problem here, since O’Reilly did not give a photo credit.

O.K., that’s it for me.  I have been totaled out.

Page 175 goes on to tell about Eva Moses and her twin sister, who stayed behind when the prisoners were marched out.  Be sure to read the footnote on page 175 which tells about Dr. Mengele sewing together two twins back to back to create Siamese twins.

I wrote about Dr. Mengele and the Siamese twins experiment on this blog post:







July 20, 2014

Philip Riteman is still educating students about the Holocaust

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 10:33 am

This morning, I read in a CBS news story that Holocaust survivor Philip Riteman is still out on the lecture circuit, educating young students in Canada about the horrors of the Holocaust.

This quote is from the news article:

One of the last living Holocaust survivors in Atlantic Canada continues to tell his story, and says he worries the horrors he experienced could happen again.

It took four decades for Auschwitz survivor Philip Riteman to begin speaking about what he went through after he was captured by the Nazis when he was 14 years old.

Philip Riteman, Holocaust survivor of Auschwitz and Dachau

Philip Riteman, Holocaust survivor of Auschwitz and Dachau

The news article is very short, but it does give a hint that Philip’s story is worth some in-depth study.  I recognized his name, when I read the news article, and I remembered that I wrote about him extensively on my website many years ago:

One of the interesting things about Philip’s story is that he was liberated on May 2, 1945 by American troops. This date identifies him as one of the prisoners who were marched out of the Dachau main camp toward the mountains of Austria in April 1945, just before the main Dachau camp was liberated..

The following information is from my scrapbookpages website:

Acting upon Hitler’s orders, the Commandant of Dachau, Wilhelm Eduard Weiter, made an attempt to evacuate the Dachau main camp before the American liberators arrived. On April 26th, 1945, Weiter left the Dachau main camp with a transport of prisoners bound for Schloss Itter, a subcamp of Dachu in Austria. Weiter allegedly committed suicide when the prisoners on the march were liberated by the Allies, but the truth is that he was probably shot by the Americans.

This quote is from my website page on Philip Riteman:

On November 10, 2005, Riteman gave a talk to College students in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada; Keith Adolph took the following notes which he posted on his blog:

-Reitman went to school as a normal child in 1938
-Early on in the war it was seen as a fight against evil
-In 1939 Poland was invaded
-His father had ties to the Russian Gov’t and so they traveled to live under Russia and still it was not a good country to live in
-The Germans’ journey to Minsk took them through Reitman’s small town. For months they drove tanks through town
-They killed those in their way or caught watching them

-The Nazis approached the mayor and demanded 10 kilos of gold and 20 kilos of silver or they would level the town. They took the money and left after a time.
-They returned and surrounded the town before asking for more. This time the town could not pay.
-Days later, at 3 AM, the Nazis came to the houses and took people from their homes. They separated children from parents and marched the 3000 residents 60 km. Others (about 5000) were driven.
-During the march they killed roughly 200 residents.
-Before releasing the residents the Nazis took 14 people aside, striped them and shot them dead, letting their bodies drop into 7 graves already dug.
-The residents were then freed and reunited with the others.

-They were left in a small town that was entirely vacant.
-The village had been purged and the people were culled into a mass grave 50 x 100 and 7 feet deep
-En route they came upon a town and they were collected into a ghetto of 40,000.
-After Reitman’s group joined the ghetto, any person approaching the ghetto was shot.
The ghetto had no food.

-Nine months later the ghetto was liquidated
-The residents were told they were being taken to a farm.
-They were all collected into 120 freight cars with all they could carry.
-The trains traveled for hours – all day
-A baby starved to death on the journey
-A man dropped dead and was pushed to the wall
-The train kept going
-The train traveled for 6 nights and 7 days.
-No food, No water
-People were soiling themselves where they stood
-One man was using a spoon to catch snow drops falling outside for water
-Reitman and the others were taken to Auschwitz

-The doors were opened and everyone jumped out
-Reitman grabbed his little sister. Also in the car were his two brothers, his big sister and his parents
-The Nazis beat and pushed them onto a platform
-A woman chasing her baby was stabbed to death with a bayonet
-Reitman was told to pretend that he was 18 when the Nazis were dividing the Jews by age and gender.
-If you were 18-45 you had a chance of surviving
-Parents with their young children were taken straight to the gas chambers.

-The Nazis began to divide the men by occupation
-Reitman pretended to be a locksmith
-The intellectuals were collected (about 300 of them) and machine gunned to death. The Nazis only needed workers.
-They were ordered to strip naked and shot if they moved too slowly.
-The Jews were shaved from head to toe.
-Body searches were conducted. Those caught hiding anything, even their gold teeth were executed.

-If you spoke German in the camps, the Nazis would bring out ‘interpreters’ who beat you with sticks so that you would never speak German again.

-Hundreds of men were put into cold showers and then given striped clothes.
-They were given a bowl, no utensils.
-They were then tattooed.
-Over 2 million died at Auschwitz.
-They were made to march. If you refused, your legs were broken.
-The Jews marched better than the Nazis.
-The Nazis would lock them into their barracks each night.
-They fit 7 into each bunk.
-There were 125,000 men at Auschwitz [main camp] at this time.
-Only 20,000 were Jewish. The others were Russians, Gypsies, Blacks and so on.

-Reitman spent 2 years at Auschwitz [main camp] and then 2 years at Dachau [subcamps]. In between he spent 6 months in Birkenau [AuschwitzII] where there were 2000 men to a barrack
-Smaller camps would kill their population and then call on larger camps to replenish their numbers. This is why Reitman moved around so much.

-Reitman says he had to close his mind to survive. He was like a zombie.
-He learned to never be first or last in line. Always be in the middle.
-He lost five brothers, his parents, his grandparents. He lost nine uncles and nine aunts and many cousins.
-He was the only survivor in his whole European family.
-He could not talk about the camps or his family for forty years.

“What kept you going?”
-If there is a God somewhere he will help me.
-He would have liked to have eaten one big meal and then died
-They ate one bowl of soup a day.
-If they had lost their bowl they were accused of sabotaging the Nazi Gov’t and beaten to death with sticks
-They wouldn’t waste the bullet.
-By comparison, the homeless today live in heaven. The Nazis burned them.
-If you limped, you were shot.
-Those who escaped got only 100-1000 feet and they starved to death.
-When they returned they were shot and burned by their fellow prisoners at the start of their day (5 AM)

-After 6 months in the camp Reitman found an old class mate who was in the camps because he was a Baptist.
-The boy recognized Reitman and called out to him.
-The Nazis had wanted his family’s cattle but the boy’s father would not give it to them. He was shot.
-His mother attacked the Nazis and she was hung in the town center.
-His sisters were cut and raped and shot in the heart.
-His little brother was chased into the woods and shot.
-The boy joined Reitman’s work group on a farm and was instantly hated by the Nazis.
-One day he was stripped and put into a water trough. The Nazis took steel wool and tried to take his freckles off.
-The boy died in the trough which was full of his own blood.
-Reitman and the others had to take the boy back to camp to be burned.
-He was Reitman’s best friend.

-Reitman was sent to another camp. When he arrived the barrack was full of all the dead.
-He and the others were forced to bury the bodies, but they were forbidden to pray.
-At another camp he spent a month in an airplane hanger.
-At Dachau the barracks were filled with bodies piled 7 ft high.
-When they tried to remove them the bodies came apart in their hands.
-These barracks were sunken into the ground 

[the barracks at the Kaufering IV camp were sunk into the ground – ]

Barracks at Kaufering IV sub-camp of Dachau were partly underground

Barracks at Kaufering IV sub-camp of Dachau were partly underground

-They were marched for 2-3 weeks in the winter with only the snow to eat.
-Reitman estimates that 50,000 were killed for their weakness.
-They marched with tanks so that American planes would not bomb the convoys. The Jews wished they would though, just to kill the Germans.
-One night the camp was empty, not a German in sight. In the distance he could see the Americans coming, calling “You’re free!”
-This was May 2, 1945. Reitman was 18 years old and 75 lbs.

-The Americans brought food and medicine.
-Reitman had never seen bananas before, or a coloured person.
-A coloured soldier taught him to peel bananas.
-He would drink 3-4 cans of milk a day

-Reitman says he will never go back to the camps, but urges young people to visit them.
-He says he sees the camp every time he closes his eyes, even when he lived in Newfoundland.
-It would take Reitman 5 years to tell the story of his 5 years in the camps.

-He cannot forgive or forget what happened. Only God can forgive.
-Reitman says he does not hate the Germans he met after the war. He only hates the Nazis

-“I am speaking for millions who cannot speak”

-When he saw Americans he applied to go to the USA.
-The Red Cross took care of him in Europe and asked him about his history which they compared to his records held by the Nazis
-A month later he received a letter from Newfoundland from his mother’s sister.
-Then he got another letter from Newfoundland with 20 US $ in it.
-And then another from Montreal with 10 US $
-Then New York from his father’s sister and an uncle who had left Europe in 1890 and another in 1905.
-They were all relatives that he had never known to exist.
-In 1946 he was to come to Canada but the Canadian Gov’t would not allow Jews into the country.
-Newfoundland was not part of Canada at the time and they brought him right over.
-He traveled from Munich to Paris to New York to Newfoundland.
-He had never been on a boat before and he was very sea sick.
-The Newfoundland Gov’t said he was a free man. He was a Newfoundlander.

Most people would give the prize for the best Holocaust lies to Irene Zisblatt, but I think that Philip Riteman is a contender for this prize.  He at least deserves an honorable mention in the list of  Holocaust liars who have told the most egregious Holocaust lies.

From the details of his story, it is clear that Riteman was a political prisoner who was first sent to the Auschwitz main camp.   He was not among the Jews who were rounded up in order to be “exterminated” at the Auchwitz-Birkeanau camp. Riteman was marched out of the Auschwitz camp, and taken to Dachau, where he was then sent to one of the sub-camps to work.  He was brought back to the main camp, and then marched out of Dachau, on a march led by the Commandant of the camp, indicating that he was one of the prominent prisoners that the Nazis wanted to save.

Prisoners marching out of Dachau pass through a German village

Prisoners marching out of the Dachau main camp in April 1945 pass through a German village


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