Scrapbookpages Blog

April 25, 2016

More misuse of the famous Ebensee photo

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 8:32 am
People passing by a famous photo taken at Ebensee

People passing a window which shows a famous Holocaust photo

The photo above was used to illustrate a news article which you can read in full at http://www.post-gazette.com/local/region/2016/04/25/Holocaust-project-focuses-on-what-Americans-knew-and-when/stories/201604220173

I have this same photo on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/KZMauthausen/Subcamps/Ebensee01.html

Photo of Holocaust survivors at Ebensee

Holocaust survivors at Ebensee sub-camp

Note that the photo, as shown on my website, is much wider; it shows more of the prisoners that were moved from the Mauthausen main camp to the Ebensee sub-camp where they could be taken care of.

According to Holocaust author Martin Gilbert, the last death marches of the World War Ii, began on May 1, 1945 as the American Army approached; prisoners from the main camp at Mauthausen, and the sub-camps at Gusen and St. Valentin, were marched to Gunskirchen and Ebensee. Hundreds of them died from exhaustion, or were shot because they couldn’t keep up, or as they attempted to escape. When American troops in the 80th Infantry Division arrived on May 4, 1945, there were around 60,000 prisoners from 25 different countries at Ebensee.

The entrance gate into the Ebenseee camp

The entrance gate into Ebenseee

The photograph above was taken on May 6, 1945, after Ebensee, a sub-camp of the Mauthausen Concentration Camp, was liberated by soldiers in the 80th Division of the US Third Army on May 4th and 5th.

The banner, written in French, reads “The French prisoners Salute the Allies.” It was erected by the anti-Nazi resistance fighters who were imprisoned here after being captured and accused of doing acts of sabotage during the Nazi occupation of France.

The prisoners at Ebensee worked in underground factories which manufactured Messerschmitt airplanes. German engineers and civilians also worked in these factories. The site was chosen because there were natural caves which could be enlarged into tunnels so that the munitions factories could be protected from Allied bombing raids.

According to Martin Gilbert, the author of a book entitled “Holocaust,” Ebensee was an “end destination” for Jewish prisoners who were evacuated from camps farther east as the Soviet Army advanced toward Germany. In the last months of the war, the Ebensee camp was seriously over-crowded with these exhausted prisoners, many of whom had just arrived in the weeks prior to the liberation.

Gilbert wrote the following regarding the evacuations and the death marches:

Begin quote

Jews who had already survived the “selections” in Birkenau, and work as slave laborers in factories, had now to survive the death marches. Throughout February and March [1945] columns of men, and crowded cattle trucks, converged on the long-existing concentration camps, now given a new task. These camps had been transformed into holding camps for the remnant of a destroyed people, men and women whose labor was still of some last-minute utility for a dying Reich, or whose emaciated bodies were to be left to languish in agony in one final camp.

End quote

According to Gilbert’s book, a train loaded with 2,059 Jews arrived at Ebensee on March 3, 1945. They had survived the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau and had first been sent to the Gross Rosen concentration camp, then on to Ebensee. Forty-nine of the Jewish prisoners died on the train, and on their first day in the camp, 182 died during the disinfection procedure.

New arrivals had to be disinfected to kill the body lice which spreads typhus. There was a typhus epidemic, in Mauthausen and the sub-camps and, according to Martin Gilbert, 30,000 prisoners had died in these camps in the last four months of the war.

August 25, 2015

Crazy mixed up newspaper article trivializes the Holocaust

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 9:32 am

Richard Cohen is a famous newspaper man, who writes for the Washington Post newspaper.  If he were a cub reporter, he would probably have been fired by now, for writing a crazy mixed up article which you can read in full here

The article includes several photos, including the photo below, which was taken at Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen.

Prisoners at the Ebensee subcamp of Mauthausen

Prisoners at the Ebensee subcamp of Mauthausen

Cohen went to Dachau, but his article includes a photo taken at Ebensee.

For some reason, the photo that is shown in the news article looks as if it has been badly photo-shopped.  Why is a photo, taken at Ebensee in Austria, being shown to illustrate a story about Dachau?  Is it because the prisoners at Dachau were in fairly good condition, considering the typhus epidemic in the camp, when it was liberated? A photo of skinny legs was needed, so the Ebensee photo was added, but the location was not identified.

The prisoners, shown in the photo above, were marched out of other camps and taken to Ebensee in Austria for their own safety.

Showing a photo of Ebensee, in a story about a visit to Dachau, amounts to Holocaust denial.  The prisoners were taken to Ebensee to save them, not to kill them.

You can read about Ebensee on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/KZMauthausen/Subcamps/Ebensee01.html

You can see what the former Dachau camp looks like today, in my recent photo below. The barracks have long since been torn down.

The former Dachau camp looks like this today

The former Dachau camp looks like this today. The boxes of gravel indicate where the barracks once stood. The guard tower on the left is a reconstruction. The building in the background is a church.

This quote is from Cohen’s news article:

It is August and the parking lots [at Dachau] are full. Throngs course through the [reconstructed] barracks, stroll the once-electrified perimeter  [fence], view huge photos of horror [in the Museum]  and, inevitably, drift over to the crematorium [Baracke X]. There, a father places his son — about 6, I’d guess — in front of [one of] the oven[s] and poses him for a picture.

One of several ovens at Dachau where tourists can pose for a photo

One of several ovens at Dachau where tourists can pose for a photo

This quote is also from the news article:

In his forthcoming book, “Black Earth,” Holocaust historian Timothy Snyder titles one chapter “The Auschwitz Paradox.” That camp has become synonymous with the Holocaust itself, obscuring not only other camps (where the survival rate was nonexistent) but also the fact that most of Europe’s Jews were not killed in some industrialized, virtually robotic, fashion. They were shot close up.

“When the mass murder of Jews is limited to an exceptional place and treated as the result of impersonal procedures, then we need not confront the fact that people not very different than us murdered other people not very different than us at close quarters for no reason,” he writes. “This we generally prefer not to see.”

What is he trying to say?  It’s all Greek to me.

August 16, 2015

How Lou Dunst survived a gas chamber twice, and now lives the good life in San Diego, CA

Filed under: California, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 12:54 pm

You can read the full story about how Lou Dunst survived a gas chamber twice here: http://www.sdjewishworld.com/2013/12/27/biography-of-lou-dunst-tells-of-his-three-lives/

This quote is from the link cited above:

Lou and his brother survived Auschwitz only to be forced once again into a boxcar to another death camp, Mauthausen. Once again, they were herded into a gas chamber, expecting to die, choked to death by poisonous gas. “We were pressed together, naked, shrieking with horror, people falling on each other, some trampled, gasping for air, unable to think, function, even form some kind of prayer.” The killing machine did not work.

But as Lou asserts, “Ha-Shem (God) made another miracle.” Lou’s deep faith in God was once again affirmed.

Barely alive at the death camp Mauthausen, starving and thirsty, the emaciated inmates cried out for water or a little piece of stale bread, anything that could help them survive, but the guards only responded with contempt. “They told us not to worry; we were going to the gas chamber anyway.” The next morning the prisoners were shoved, pushed, kicked into the gas chamber. They waited for the smell of the gas, but it didn’t come. There was a malfunction in the system and the poisonous gas was not funneled through the gas lines to reach its destination so it did not work. Lou and the others miraculously got out from the gas chamber, hysterical, demoralized, relieved, confused, grateful, terrorized, but still not dead.”

Finally the doors opened and the stunned slaves rush out into the open air. The Nazis pushed and shoved the scared and naked prisoners into the central meeting ground, where the commandant of Mauthausen casually remarked: “To burn our bodies was too expensive. Instead, he would send us to a place where we would vanish without any cost to the Third Reich.”

Lou and Irving were transferred once again, this time to Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen, where they were to work underground making pilotless VI rockets that would rain down on London. At Ebensee, one of the harshest death camps, Lou was placed on a pile of corpses; hardly breathing and with little pulse, Lou awaited death.

On May 6, 1945, American GI Robert Persinger of the Third Cavalry of General George S. Patton’s Third Army drove his tank, the Lady Luck, through the camp fence to liberate the inmates of Ebensee. Irving Dunst grabbed Persinger’s hand and tugged him over to his brother’s seemingly lifeless body on the pile of corpus and shouted: “That’s my brother. Please rescue him.”

Lou’s miraculous rescue was the beginning of the third phase in the life of Lou Dunst. Lou was slowly nursed back to health and life by many, including a stay in a Catholic hospital where the Sisters of Mercy showed respect and treated him humanely, until he was well enough to leave on his own. Lou and Irving, like so many other survivors went in search of their relatives and of any survivors they could find. They made their way back to Jasina walking, hitch-hiking or riding on army vehicle and on trains going east. They placed hand-written notes on bulletin boards in towns along the way, notifying anyone who was searching for survivors that they were alive and that they could be reached at the main European Jewish office that was trying to connect surviving relatives with one another. Most of all, they looked for any information they could find about Risi, their sister.

After reading this story about the failure of the gas chambers, I was left wondering why oh why didn’t the Nazis send someone to Missouri to learn how to construct a workable gas chamber.

Missouri is a state that is full of German-Americans, even to this day.  In the 1940ies, most of the citizens of Missouri could still speak German.

I blogged about the Missouri gas chamber on this blog post:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2012/06/03/what-does-a-real-gas-chamber-look-like/

You can read all about the Mauthausen gas chamber on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/Gas%20Chamber/GasChamberEntrance.html

Door into the Mauthausen gas chamber

Door into the Mauthausen gas chamber with water pipe going into the room, shown on the left

The photo above shows the door into the Mauthausen shower room gas chamber. Looking through the door, one can see the interior of the gas chamber with heating pipes or cooling pipes on the north wall and the single drain hole on the brick floor.

On the wall to the right of the shower gas chamber door is a water pipe going into the gas chamber, which could have been used as a fully functioning shower room, when it was not in use as a gas chamber.

On the other side of the wall adjacent to the gas chamber is a small room which is now empty. Former prisoners at Mauthausen said that the “gassing apparatus” was located in a room adjoining the gas chamber.  This was the apparatus which did not work properly when Lou Dunst was being gassed.

I wrote about the Ebensee camp on this page of my website:

http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/KZMauthausen/Subcamps/Ebensee01.html

I blogged about the Holocaust gas chambers that are still in existence on this blog post:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2010/08/30/how-many-of-the-nazi-gas-chambers-are-still-in-existence/

August 4, 2015

New movie about Miklós Nyiszli is being planned

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, movies — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 9:17 am
Dr. Miklos at Ebensee

Dr. Milklos Nyiszli at the Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen in Austria

Update: 3:10 p.m

A reader of my blog has just made a comment in which a new book about Dr. Nyiszli is mentioned.  The title of the book is  I was doctor Mengele’s assistant.

This quote is from the comment:

Begin quote:
The excerpts from the memories:

“There was a pile of corpses in the gas chamber of Crematorium I. The Sonderkommando had begun to pull them down. The whirr of the lift and the sound of its slamming door reached my room. Work was proceeding at full pace. The gas chamber had to be emptied immediately, for another transport was due to arrive.
Suddenly the Vorarbeiter of the Gaskommando burst into by room and excitedly informed me that in among the corpses they had found a woman who was still alive.
I grabbed my medical bag, which was always kept close at hand, and rushed downstairs to the gas chamber.(…)”

End Quote

I don’t understand the above quote.  There was no “lift” in the gas chamber in Crematorium 1, which was located in the main camp. The Crematorium 1 gas chamber was on level ground with dirt piled up around it. It was NOT underground and no lift or elevator was required. The alleged gas chambers in Auschwitz-Birkenau were underground, and one of them, Crematorium III,  did have  a  “lift” or elevator.

I believe that Dr. Nyiszli is a complete and total liar. You can see photos of the gas chamber in the main Auschwitz camp on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/AuschwitzScrapbook/Tour/Auschwitz1/Auschwitz08.html

You can see the ruins of Crematorium III on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/AuschwitzScrapbook/Tour/Birkenau/RuinsIII01.html

You can read about the mistakes that Dr. Nyiszli made in his book on this blog post:

https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2011/10/14/dr-miklos-nyiszli-the-jewish-doctor-who-volunteered-to-help-dr-josef-mengele-in-his-experiments/

Continue reading my original post:

Dr. Miklós Nyiszli, who will be the subject of a new movie,  is shown in the photo at the top of this page.

One of the survivors of the Ebensee concentration camp, according to Martin Gilbert’s book entitled Holocaust, was Dr. Miklos Nyiszli, a prisoner who had allegedly worked as a medical doctor in the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Dr. Nyiszli is shown in the photo above, wearing a white coat. The movie entitled The Gray Zone is based on his story. Now a new movie about him is being planned.

Dr. Nyiszli was allegedly an eye-witness to the gassing of prisoners at Auschwitz-Birkenau and to the horrible medical experiments conducted on the prisoners by Dr. Josef Mengele.

When Auschwitz-Birkenau was evacuated in January 1945, Nyiszli was among the prisoners on the death march, out of the camp, to central Germany. As the American Army approached, the prisoners was marched again to Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen in Austria.

In his book entitled Holocaust, Martin Gilbert wrote the following quote from Dr. Nyiszli’s story:

On May 5, a white flag flew from the Ebensee watch-tower. It was finished. They had laid down their arms. The sun was shining brightly when, at nine o’clock, an American light tank, with three soldiers on board, arrived and took possession of the camp. We were free.

I have written extensively about Dr. Miklós Nyiszli in several blog posts which you can read in full at https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/tag/dr-miklos-nyiszli/

In my humble opinion, I am convinced that Miklós Nyiszli is a complete and total fraud. I don’t believe that Dr. Nyiszli was ever at Auschwitz.  If a new movie is ever made about him, it should be classified as fiction.

This quote is from the news article, which you can read in full here:

American director Abel Ferrara is planning a film based on the memoir of an assistant to Josef Mengele, the notorious doctor who conducted experiments at the Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Ferrara, who is best known for films such as ‘King of New York’ and ‘Bad Lieutenant’, is basing the Auschwitz project on the 1946 book ‘I Was Doctor Mengele’s Assistant’, by Miklós Nyiszli.

Nyiszli was a Hungarian Jew who was transported to Auschwitz as a prisoner in 1944.

His skills as a doctor came to the attention of Dr Mengele, and he was forced to work as an assistant to the infamous medic, carrying out numerous experiments on camp inmates.

Mengele evaded capture by the Allies and fled to South America, living under a false name in Argentina, followed by Paraguay and Brazil, until his death in 1979.

Nyiszli died of a heart attack in 1956. (nh)
– See more at: http://www.thenews.pl/1/11/Artykul/215985,Abel-Ferrara-planning-Auschwitz-film#sthash.9ZyN447P.dpuf

July 23, 2015

Holocaust professorship has been launched in Germany

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 12:59 pm

The latest Holocaust news is that a “Holocaust professorship” has been launched in Germany; you can read the full story here.

The photo below accompanies the news article.

Survivors of Ebensee camp

Survivors of Ebensee camp in Austria

In the photo shown above, the prisoners have removed their pants in order to show off their skinny legs.  Note that the prisoner on the far right is holding his pants in front of himself.

The following quote is from the news article, cited above:

Goethe University in Frankfurt has secured funding to establish Germany’s first ever professor position dedicated to studying the Holocaust, the Hessian Ministry for Science and the Arts announced on Monday.

The programme will launch in 2017 to support a professor researching the history and impact of the Holocaust in which six million Jews were killed by the Nazi regime during the Second World War.

“Seventy years after the end of the Holocaust this is a long overdue step. In the land of the perpetrators, one must not forget what happened,” said regional Science Minister Boris Rhein in a statement.

“It is our duty to be at the forefront of this research. What is special about this Holocaust professorship is that it is not only about understanding the past. Specifically it is about the repercussions of the events up until the present, and that will be the focus of the research.”

There was no explanation for the photo that was shown above the news article, so I am going to explain it to you now.

The photo in the news article shows survivors of the Ebensee sub-camp of the Mauthausen prison camp, posing on May 7, 1945 after they had been liberated by American troops a few days day before.

In the photograph, the prisoners all have shaved heads, a procedure which was used in all the Nazi concentration camps in an effort to control the lice which spreads typhus. Their heads were shaved first on the sides and the next time on the top. These prisoners have a regrowth of hair on the top, but have recently been shaved on the sides of their heads. The privileged Kapos were allowed to have a full growth of hair or a beard if they were bald.

Prisoners celebrate their liberation from Ebensee

Prisoners celebrate their liberation from Ebensee

The photograph above shows a sign that was erected by the German prisoners at Ebensee. It reads “We welcome our liberators.” Among the German prisoners were some who were condemned criminals.

Gate into Ebensee camp

Gate into Ebensee camp

The photograph immediately above was taken on May 6, 1945, after Ebensee, a sub-camp of the Mauthausen Concentration Camp, had been liberated by soldiers in the 80th Division of the US Third Army on May 4th and 5th. The banner, written in French, reads “The French prisoners Salute the Allies.” (Note that all of the prisoners are wearing trousers.)

The banner, that is shown in the photo, had been erected by the anti-Nazi resistance fighters who were imprisoned here after being captured and accused of doing acts of sabotage during the Nazi occupation of France.

The prisoners in these photos are not Jews who were being Holocausted, and such photos should not be used to teach the Holocaust.

According to author Martin Gilbert, the last “death marches” of the war began on May 1, 1945 as the American Army approached; prisoners from the main camp at Mauthausen and the sub-camps at Gusen and St. Valentin were marched to Gunskirchen and Ebensee.

Hundreds of these prisoners died from exhaustion, or  they were shot because they couldn’t keep up with the march, or as they attempted to escape.

When American troops in the 80th Infantry Division arrived on May 4, 1945, there were around 60,000 prisoners from 25 different countries at Ebensee.

The prisoners at Ebensee had been working in underground factories in which Messerschmitt airplanes were being manufactured. German engineers and German civilians also worked in these factories. The site had been chosen because there were natural caves which could be enlarged into tunnels so that the munitions factories could be protected from Allied bombing raids.

According to Martin Gilbert, the author of a book entitled Holocaust, Ebensee was an “end destination” for Jewish prisoners who had been evacuated from camps farther east as the Soviet Army advanced toward Germany.

In the last months of the war, the Ebensee camp was seriously over-crowded with these exhausted prisoners, many of whom had just arrived in the weeks prior to the liberation.

Martin Gilbert wrote the following regarding the evacuations and the death marches:

“Jews who had already survived the ‘selections’ in Birkenau, and work as slave laborers in factories, had now to survive the death marches. Throughout February and March [1945] columns of men, and crowded cattle trucks, converged on the long-existing concentration camps, now given a new task. These camps had been transformed into holding camps for the remnant of a destroyed people, men and women whose labor was still of some last-minute utility for a dying Reich, or whose emaciated bodies were to be left to languish in agony in one final camp.”

According to Martin Gilbert, a train loaded with 2,059 Jews arrived at Ebensee on March 3, 1945. They had survived the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau and had first been sent to the Gross Rosen concentration camp, then on to Ebensee.

Forty-nine of the Jewish prisoners had died on the train, and on their first day in the camp, 182 more prisoners died during the disinfection procedure. New arrivals had to be disinfected to kill the body lice which spreads typhus. There was a typhus epidemic in Mauthausen and the sub-camps. According to Martin Gilbert, 30,000 prisoners died in these camps in the last four months of the war.

I sincerely hope that “the professor” will tell the true story of the photo which is shown in the news article, but I don’t think that there is much chance of that happening.

October 9, 2014

Documentary, about a child suvivor of 5 Nazi camps, nominated for an Emmy

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, movies, World War II — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 11:27 am

This news article tells about a Jewish child who survived 5 concentration camps during the course of nearly 3 years while World War II, and the Holocaust, were going on.

This quote is from the news article, cited above:

“Misa’s Fugue,” the documentary based on the true story of Frank “Misa” Grunwald’s almost three years in Nazi concentration camps as a child, has exceeded [Jennifer] Goss’ expectations in pretty much every way.

So when Goss, along with her husband, and Grunwald, the film’s director, Sean Gaston, and other important players in the making of the documentary found themselves at the Mid-Atlantic Emmy Awards in Philadelphia on September 20, they knew all the late nights, and trips were worth it.

I know what you are going to say: How could a child survive FIVE concentration camps, during the genocide of the Jews, aka the Holocaust, when everyone knows that children under the age of 15 were immediately gassed.

Note that the article calls Terezin a “death camp.”  Why send children from one death camp to another, and then let them survive? Was it because the Nazis wanted survivors to tell the story in documentaries 70 years later?

According to the article:

[Framk ”Misa”] Grunwald was born in Czechoslovakia in September of 1932. Four months later, Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany. “Misa’s Fugue” centers around Grunwald’s journey through Terezin [Theresienstadt], Auschwitz, Mauthausen, Melk and Gunskirchen concentration camps.

Nearly 1.5 million children were murdered during the Holocaust between 1933 and 1945. Grunwald, now 82, was one of the less than 300 children who survived the Nazi death-camp at Terezin in the Czech Republic. For the next two years Grunwald found himself in various camps, in various countries, often getting there by death marches.

So Frank Grunwald spent a year, as a little boy, at Theresienstadt (now called Terezin) before he was hauled off to Auschwitz.  According to the article, Terezin was a “death-camp.”

Grunwald was probably taken to the Auschwitz II camp, aka Auschwitz-Birkenau, where children under the age of 15 were immediately gassed.

Yet somehow, Grunwald was not gassed at Auschwitz, but instead, he was transferred to Mauthausen, a Class III camp for convicted criminals and “Return Unwanted” prisoners, where he was again not killed in the gas chamber, but was transferred to the Melk sub-camp and then to the Gunskirchen subcamp of Mauthausen. Records show that Gunskirchen had only 450 prisoners.

Why did the stupid Nazis keep moving Grunwald around like that?  Did they want a child to survive to the age of 82, so that he could tell his “Holocaust survivor” story in a documentary?

I suspect that Frank “Misa” Grunwald was on the “death march” out of Auschwitz when the camp had to be abandoned because the Soviet liberators were on their way.

According to some Holocaust experts, the purpose of a “death march” was to kill the prisoners before the Soviets could save them.  Some of the survivors of these death marches were sent to Mauthausen in Austria because this was as far away as they could get from the liberators who were coming to save the children.

Melk and Gunskirchen were both sub-camps of Mauthausen where prisoners were working in underground factories which were building Messerschmidtt airplanes.

The Gunskirchen camp was not set up until very late in the war, so there is not much information about it on the Internet.

Ebensee is much better known than Gunskirchen, and I have a page about it on my scrapbookpages website.

The photo below is an old photo which was taken at Ebensee. This photo proves that there were very young children taken to Austria near the end of the war.

Young children at the Ebensee camp in Austria

Young children at the Ebensee camp in Austria

Notice that one of the young children has no shoes, although the older boy has a nice pair of boots.

You can see some old photos of Gunskirchen, taken by the American liberators of the camp, on this website: http://www.remember.org/mooney/images/thumbnails/index.html

The photo below shows the Melk sub-camp, which was in the same area of Austria as Gunskirchen.

Melk, a sub-camp of Mauthausen where Jews worked in factories

Melk, a sub-camp of Mauthausen where Jews worked in factories

Survivors of Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen greet their liberators

Survivors of Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen greet their liberators

Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen

Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen

The prisoners at Ebensee, shown in the photo above, worked in underground factories which manufactured Messerschmitt airplanes. German engineers and civilians also worked in these factories. The site was chosen because there were natural caves which could be enlarged into tunnels so that the munitions factories could be protected from Allied bombing raids.

Of course, some of the prisoners in these camps died, in spite of the fact that the Nazis tried to keep them alive so that they could work as slave laborers in the factories.

The photo below shows dead bodies at the Gusen sub-camp of Mauthausen.

Dead bodies found in the Gusen sub-camp of Mauthausen

Dead bodies found in the Gusen sub-camp of Mauthausen

After World War II ended, the Allies accused the Nazis of taking prisoners to Mauthausen to kill them in the tunnels of the sub-camps.  I wrote about Ernst Kaltenbrunner’s defense to this charge at the Nuremberg IMT, on this blog post: https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2012/08/11/the-testimony-of-dr-ernst-kaltenbrunner-at-the-nuremberg-imt/

On my website, I wrote about the alleged order given by Ernst Kaltenbrunner to kill all the prisoners at Mauthausen and its sub-camps: http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/KZMauthausen/ZiereisDeath.html

 

December 30, 2013

New book tells about a Holocaust survivor who escaped from the Mauthausen gas chamber

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 11:15 am

My blog post today is about a book entitled My Bargain with God: The Story of Holocaust Survivor Lou Dunst, by Ben Kamin. Sunbelt Publishing, Inc., El Cajon, California, 2014.  You can read all about the book in a news article here.

The Nazis had a plan to kill all the Jews in Europe, known as “The Final Solution to the Jewish Question in Europe.”  Their plan was never accomplished, and today there are numerous survivors still living.  These survivors are publishing books, and their stories must explain how they beat the odds and weren’t gassed.

My photo of the Mauthausen gas chamber

Mauthausen gas chamber has shower fixtures on the ceiling

Here is a quote from the article about the story of Holocaust survivor Lou Dunst:

Lou and his brother survived Auschwitz only to be forced once again into a boxcar to another death camp, Mauthausen. Once again, they were herded into a gas chamber, expecting to die, choked to death by poisonous gas. “We were pressed together, naked, shrieking with horror, people falling on each other, some trampled, gasping for air, unable to think, function, even form some kind of prayer.” The killing machine did not work.

Sign on the wall of the Mauthausen gas chamber explains how th gassing apparatus worked

Sign on the wall of the Mauthausen gas chamber explains how the gassing apparatus worked

The killing machine, mentioned in the news article, was in a separate room behind one of the walls in the gas chamber. The machine was allegedly removed by the Nazis, on April 29, 1945, shortly before the camp was liberated on May 5, 1945.   Lou Dunst was liberated from Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen, on May 6, 1945.

The quote from the news article continues below:

Barely alive at the death camp Mauthausen, starving and thirsty, the emaciated inmates cried out for water or a little piece of stale bread, anything that could help them survive, but the guards only responded with contempt. “They told us not to worry; we were going to the gas chamber anyway.” The next morning the prisoners were shoved, pushed, kicked into the gas chamber. They waited for the smell of the gas, but it didn’t come. There was a malfunction in the system and the poisonous gas was not funneled through the gas lines to reach its destination so it did not work. Lou and the others miraculously got out from the gas chamber, hysterical, demoralized, relieved, confused, grateful, terrorized, but still not dead.”

The gassing apparatus was located in a small room behind the gas chamber

The gassing apparatus was located in a small room behind the gas chamber

The photo above shows one of the doors into the Mauthausen gas chamber on the left.  On the right, in the photo, is the gassing apparatus room; the gassing apparatus is no longer there.

The two photos below show the door handle on the outside of the room, and the door latch on the inside of the gas chamber.

Door handle outside the gas chamber at Mauthauen

Door handle outside the gas chamber at Mauthausen

Door latch inside the Mauthausen gas chamber

Door latch inside the Mauthausen gas chamber

The Mauthausen gas chamber was a fully functioning shower room in addition to being a gas chamber with a gassing apparatus behind one of the walls.

Lou Dunst is indeed lucky to have survived the notorious Mauthausen camp where prisoners could be gassed in the shower room, that is, if the gassing apparatus was working on the day that they were scheduled to take a shower.

This quote is from the news article about the book:

Finally the doors [of the gas chamber] opened and the stunned slaves [prisoners] rush out into the open air.  The Nazis pushed and shoved the scared and naked prisoners into the central meeting ground, where the commandant of Mauthausen casually remarked: “To burn our bodies was too expensive. Instead, he would send us to a place where we would vanish without any cost to the Third Reich.”

Lou and Irving were transferred once again, this time to Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen, where they were to work underground making pilotless VI rockets that would rain down on London. At Ebensee, one of the harshest death camps, Lou was placed on a pile of corpses; hardly breathing and with little pulse, Lou awaited death.

On May 6, 1945, American GI Robert Persinger of the Third Cavalry of General George S. Patton’s Third Army drove his tank, the Lady Luck, through the camp fence to liberate the inmates of Ebensee. Irving Dunst grabbed Persinger’s hand and tugged him over to his brother’s seemingly lifeless body on the pile of corpus and shouted: “That’s my brother. Please rescue him.”

The photo below shows a pile of corpses at Ebensee.  The soldier in the photo, which was taken on May 8, 1945, is Al Winters.

Dunst was on a pile of corspes at Ebensee when he was resuced

Lou Dunst was on a pile of dead bodies, like this, at Ebensee when he was rescued

You can read about Ebensee on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Mauthausen/KZMauthausen/Subcamps/Ebensee01.html

April 3, 2013

Ebensee, a sub-camp of Mauthausen, was an end destination for Jews during the Holocaust

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 11:31 am

Holocaust Remembrance Day in 2013 is on Sunday, the 7th of April.

On this website, I read the following quote about Holocaust Remembrance Day:

This Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial Day), take time to remember the victims of the Holocaust.

It is very important to remember this dark time in history, to think about how millions of people were destroyed, because of hatred. The hatred and ignorance continues today, as there are factions of society in America, the Middle East, Europe, and around the globe that are accepting and propagating Holocaust denial.

It’s hard to fathom, but there are people who hate Israel so much, they are bent on “re-writing history” with a concerted effort of Holocaust denial propaganda. They prey on the ignorant and those who already have hate in their hearts for the Jewish people and tell them that the Holocaust never happened, and that it was an elaborate fabrication.

The photo below was included on the website with the above quote.

Prisoners who were liberated from the Ebensee subcamp in May 1945

Prisoners who were liberated from the Ebensee subcamp in May 1945

According to Martin Gilbert, the author of a book entitled Holocaust, Ebensee was an “end destination” for Jewish prisoners who were evacuated from camps farther east as the Soviet Army advanced toward Germany. In the last months of the war, the Ebensee camp was seriously over-crowded with these exhausted prisoners, many of whom had just arrived in the weeks prior to the liberation. Gilbert wrote the following regarding the evacuations and the death marches:

Jews who had already survived the ‘selections’ in Birkenau, and work as slave laborers in factories, had now to survive the death marches. Throughout February and March [1945] columns of men, and crowded cattle trucks, converged on the long-existing concentration camps, now given a new task. These camps had been transformed into holding camps for the remnant of a destroyed people, men and women whose labor was still of some last-minute utility for a dying Reich, or whose emaciated bodies were to be left to languish in agony in one final camp.

According to Gilbert’s book, a train loaded with 2,059 Jews arrived at Ebensee on March 3, 1945. They had survived the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau and had first been sent to the Gross Rosen concentration camp, then on to Ebensee. Forty-nine of the Jewish prisoners died on the train, and on their first day in the camp, 182 died during the disinfection procedure. New arrivals had to be disinfected to kill the body lice which spreads typhus. There was a typhus epidemic in Mauthausen and the sub-camps and, according to Martin Gilbert, 30,000 prisoners died in these camps in the last four months of the war.

Mauthausen and the sub-camp of Ebensee were not camps specifically for Jews.  The photograph below was taken on May 6, 1945, after Ebensee had been liberated by soldiers in the 80th Division of the US Third Army on May 4th and 5th. The banner, written in French, reads “The French prisoners Salute the Allies.” It was erected by the anti-Nazi resistance fighters who were imprisoned here after being captured and accused of doing acts of sabotage during the Nazi occupation of France.

Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen after it was liberated in May 1945

Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen after it was liberated in May 1945

The prisoners in the photo, shown on the website about Holocaust Remembrance day, may or may not have been Jewish prisoners who had been evacuated from Auschwitz-Birkenau to Gross Rosen and then to Ebensee.

The photo below shows German prisoners marching out of the camp after it was liberated.

German criminals and Resistance fighters marching out of Ebensee camp

German criminals and political prisoners marching out of Ebensee camp

According to Martin Gilbert, the last death marches of the war began on May 1, 1945 as the American Army approached; prisoners from the main camp at Mauthausen and the sub-camps at Gusen and St. Valentin were marched to Gunskirchen and Ebensee. Hundreds of them died from exhaustion, or were shot because they couldn’t keep up, or as they attempted to escape. When American troops in the 80th Infantry Division arrived on May 4, 1945, there were around 60,000 prisoners from 25 different countries at Ebensee.
Evelyn le Chene, the historian of Mauthausen, wrote that, as the American armies approached Ebensee, all thirty thousand prisoners in the camp were ordered into a tunnel packed with explosives. There were similar reports of plans to kill all the prisoners at other camps, such as Nordhausen, and even Dachau, but none of these plans were ever carried out.

Hitler did not want the prisoners to be released to get revenge on German and Austrian civilians. In fact, the Russian liberators at Theresienstadt did release the Jewish prisoners there, and according to Theo Richmond, the author of the book Konin, One Man’s Quest For a Vanished Jewish Community, the former inmates did get “nekomeh” or Revenge. Richmond quotes Louis Lefkowitz, a Jewish survivor of Buchenwald and Theresienstadt, who recounted the following story regarding German civilians who were trying to flee from the Russian soldiers who were also exacting vengeance on the Germans:

I saw nekomeh in Theresienstadt. For two days after the liberation, the Russians let us do whatever we want. I was too weak to join in, but I saw our boys bring in Germans who were running away on horse and wagons. They brought them in – whole families on the wagons. They put gasoline over the people and burned them up. Wagons with whole families were burning day and night for two days.

The following quote, regarding the plan to force all the Ebensee prisoners into a tunnel, is from Evelyn le Chene:

The prisoners, to a man, blankly refused. The SS guards were paralyzed with indecision. The hordes of humans swayed and murmured. For the first time since their arrest, the prisoners who were not already dying saw the possibility that they might just survive the war. Understandably, they neither wished to be blown up in the tunnel, nor mowed down by SS machine guns for refusing. But they knew that in these last days, many of the SS had left and been replaced by Ethnic Germans. […] With the war all but over, they were thinking of the future, and the punishment they would receive for the slaughter of so many human beings was something they still wished – even with their already stained hands – to avoid. And so the prisoners won the day.

So what is the point that I am trying to make in my blog post today?  I think that the website, that is asking for money for Jewish survivors of the Holocaust, could have used a better photo in their effort to combat Holocaust denial.  The prisoners in the photo, taken at Ebensee, do not look Jewish to me.

I like the photo below, which is a still photo from the documentary made by the Soviet liberators of Auschwitz.

Survivor of Auschwitz shown in a movie made by the Soviet liberators

Survivor of Auschwitz shown in a documentary made by the Soviet liberators

The expression on this woman’s face says it all.  She is angry because she has been pulled out of her warm bed, wrapped up in a thick comforter, to pose for a documentary.  She didn’t leave with the prisoners who marched out of the camp and were taken first to the Gross Rosen concentration camp, and then on to Ebensee.  No, she stayed put, because she knew that she would not be killed if she didn’t join the death march out of Auschwitz.

January 27, 2013

Survivors of the Ebensee subcamp of Mauthausen claimed to be subjects of medical experiments

Filed under: Dachau, Health, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 12:00 pm
Army Signal Core photo of Ebensee survivors, May 7, 1945

Army Signal Core photo of Ebensee survivors, May 7, 1945

You can check here to confirm that the photo above was taken by the US Army Signal Core at the Ebensee sub-camp of Mauthausen.

This quote, concerning the photo, is from the web page, cited above:

ARC Identifier: 531271
Title: Starved prisoners, nearly dead from hunger, pose in concentration camp in Ebensee, Austria. The camp was reputedly used for “scientific” experiments. It was liberated by the 80th Division., 05/07/1945

Creator: Department of Defense. Department of the Army. Office of the Chief Signal Officer. (09/18/1947 – 02/28/1964) ( Most Recent)

Type of Archival Materials:
Photographs and other Graphic Materials
Level of Description:
Item from Record Group 111: Records of the Office of the Chief Signal Officer, 1860 – 1982

Note that the description of the photo says that the camp (Ebensee), where this photo was taken, was reputedly used for “scientific” experiments. Reputedly?  Sorry, not good enough.

This same photo is shown on this web page, but without a caption.  The text adjacent to the photo reads as follows:

In Auschwitz experimental medicine was tried by doctors (namely Dr. Helmuth Vetter) on sick patients, mostly typhus.  However, even when it was obvious the patient was being hurt, the experiment would continue.  Many patients lost their lives and few were saved.  Even worse, the experiments were not trying to cure the patients but to see bodily reactions to the disease and different medicine.

(survivors from the medical ward)

In conclusion, by carrying out these experiments and trying them on inmates in the camps, the Nazi physicians broke their Hippocratic Oath (stated in the Introduction) that had been put in place and followed for almost two thousand years.  They not only broke their promise as a doctor but they killed and injured many innocent prisoners for the simple reason of wanting to find out how individuals would react to different amounts and types of medicines.

The photo of the Ebensee survivors is shown in the space next to the words (survivors from the medical ward).  The web page that shows this photo and identifies it as the “survivors from a medical ward” is from the website of the University of California at Santa Barbara, specifically from the website of faculty member Harold Marcuse.  The article, written by Professor Marcuse, concerns “The book Nazi Medicine: Doctors, Victims and Medicine in Auschwitz by Howard Fertig explores the role of medicine and those affected by it in the Auschwitz concentration camp.”

Even though the photo might show survivors of a medical experiment, the men in the photo are probably not survivors of the medical experiments in Block 20 in Auschwitz, which is what the article is about.  The survivors of the Auschwitz experiments might have joined the “death march” out of Auschwitz, and they might have ended up at Ebensee, where there was a typhus epidemic in progress, but it is highly unlikely.

The photo below, which is also included in the article about Nazi medical experiments, was taken in the typhus ward at Dachau; American doctors are caring for the typhus patients.

Prisoners in the typhus ward at Dachau

Prisoners in the typhus ward at Dachau

The above photo was taken by the US Army Signal Core at Dachau; yet it is used in a history course by the University of California at Santa Barbara to illustrate Nazi medical experiments.  What’s wrong with that, you ask?  Substituting photos is totally disingenuous and should be against the law.  The photo should be identified, on the UCSB website, as being a photo taken in a typhus ward at Dachau.

As for the Ebensee camp, here is the real story, which the students at Santa Barbara should have been told.

Gate into the Ebensee subcamp

Gate into the Ebensee subcamp

The photograph above was taken on May 6, 1945, after Ebensee, a sub-camp of the Mauthausen Concentration Camp, was liberated by soldiers in the 80th Division of the US Third Army on May 4th and 5th.

The banner, written in French, reads “The French prisoners Salute the Allies.” It was erected by the anti-Nazi resistance fighters who were imprisoned here after being captured and accused of doing acts of sabotage during the Nazi occupation of France.

German Ebensee prisoners welcome their liberators

German Ebensee prisoners welcome their liberators

The photograph above shows a sign that was erected by the German prisoners in the Ebensee camp. The English translation is  “We welcome our liberators.” Among the German prisoners were some who were condemned criminals that had been released from the regular prisons and sent to work in the concentration camps.

The prisoners at Ebensee worked in underground factories which manufactured Messerschmitt airplanes. German engineers and civilians also worked in these factories. The Ebensee site was chosen because there were natural caves which could be enlarged into tunnels so that the munitions factories could be protected from Allied bombing raids.

According to Martin Gilbert, the author of a book entitled Holocaust, Ebensee was an “end destination” for Jewish prisoners who were evacuated from camps farther east as the Soviet Army advanced toward Germany. In the last months of the war, the Ebensee camp was seriously over-crowded with these exhausted prisoners, many of whom had just arrived in the weeks prior to the liberation.

Children at the Ebensee camp after it was liberated

Children at the Ebensee camp after it was liberated

Martin Gilbert wrote the following regarding the evacuations and the death marches:

Jews who had already survived the “selections” in Birkenau, and work as slave laborers in factories, had now to survive the death marches. Throughout February and March [1945] columns of men, and crowded cattle trucks, converged on the long-existing concentration camps, now given a new task. These camps had been transformed into holding camps for the remnant of a destroyed people, men and women whose labor was still of some last-minute utility for a dying Reich, or whose emaciated bodies were to be left to languish in agony in one final camp.

According to Gilbert’s book, a train loaded with 2,059 Jews arrived at Ebensee on March 3, 1945. They had survived the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau and had first been sent to the Gross Rosen concentration camp, then on to Ebensee. Forty-nine of the Jewish prisoners died on the train, and on their first day in the camp, 182 died during the disinfection procedure. New arrivals had to be disinfected to kill the body lice which spreads typhus. There was a typhus epidemic in Mauthausen and the sub-camps and, according to Martin Gilbert, 30,000 prisoners died in these camps in the last four months of the war.

According to Martin Gilbert, the last death marches of the war began on May 1, 1945 as the American Army approached; prisoners from the main camp at Mauthausen and the sub-camps at Gusen and St. Valentin were marched to Gunskirchen and Ebensee. Hundreds of them died from exhaustion, or were shot because they couldn’t keep up, or as they attempted to escape. When American troops in the 80th Infantry Division arrived on May 4, 1945, there were around 60,000 prisoners from 25 different countries at Ebensee.

You can read more about the Ebensee camp on another blog here and here.