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July 29, 2013

Concentration camp prisoners who wore a black triangle will be honored in a new Berlin memorial

Dachau triangle sculpture

Dachau triangle sculpture has no black triangle (1997 photo)

According to the current news, the mentally and physically disabled in Nazi Germany wore a black triangle in the concentration camps.

The Huffington Post has an article about the planned memorial to the victims of the Nazi euthanasia program in Germany which you can read here.  This quote is from the article:

Adolf Hitler saw no place for the mentally and physically disabled in his vision of a “racially pure” Germany, just as he saw no place for Jews, Sinti and Roma and homosexuals.

You can read about the euthanasia program at Hartheim Castle in Austria on my website here.

I took the photo above, in May 1997 at Dachau, on my very first visit to a Memorial Site in a former Nazi concentration camp.  That’s when I learned for the first time about how the prisoners were classified according to several categories.

At Dachau, in 1997, there was nothing in the Museum about handicapped people being put into a concentration camp and forced to wear a black triangle.

Another triangle sculpture at the Dachau Memorial Site (1997 photo)

Close-up of triangle sculpture at the Dachau Memorial Site (1997 photo)

Non-Jewish Polish forced laborers at Dachau wore a blue triangle, as shown in the photo above. A purple triangle was worn by the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

A bar over the triangle denoted a person who had been released and then incarcerated again for a second offense. A dot below the triangle meant that the prisoner was in the punishment detail and had to perform hard labor. Note the red dots in the sculpture.

Another section of the Dachau Triangle sculpture

Another section of the Dachau Triangle sculpture

The vast majority of the prisoners at Dachau were political prisoners from other countries, primarily Communists and illegal combatants who continued to fight after their countries were conquered; they wore a red triangle, pointing downward. A red triangle pointing upward was for a German political prisoner, but they are not included in the Dachau sculpture.

Monument at Sachsenhausen Memorial Site shows only red triangles (1999 photo)

Monument at Sachsenhausen Memorial Site shows only red triangles in honor of the Communist prisoners (1999 photo)

Inside the Museum at Dachau, in 1997, was a poster, which is shown in the photo below.

Poster shows the various badges worn by prisoners to designate their category

Poster shows the various badges worn by prisoners to designate their category

The top row of triangles in the photo above shows all the colors of the badges worn by the prisoners in all the Nazi concentration camps.

Red was for Communists, Social Democrats, anarchists, and other “enemies of the state.” Green was for German criminals who had committed two or more crimes. Blue was for foreign forced laborers; brown was for Gypsies; pink was for homosexuals; purple was for Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Black was for a-socials, a catch-all term for vagrants, bums, prostitutes, hobos, perverts, alcoholics who were living on the streets, or anyone who didn’t have a permanent address. The “work-shy,” or those who were arrested because they refused to work, also wore a black badge.

Before 1942, Gypsy men wore a black triangle in the concentration camps. At that time, Gypsy men were arrested and imprisoned for being a-social if they didn’t have a permanent address, or they were arrested for being “work-shy” if they were not employed.

Every male citizen in Nazi Germany, who was capable of working, was required to take a job and they were not allowed to quit their job without permission. Gypsy women were arrested under the a-social category if they were prostitutes.

When I visited the Sachsenhausen Memorial Site in 1999, I learned more about the triangles that were worn by the prisoners.

According to information presented at the Sachsenhausen Museum, Jewish prisoners always wore two triangles: one was a yellow triangle, with another triangle of a different color sewn on top of it, to form a six point star.

Jewish political prisoners wore a yellow triangle with a red triangle on top. Jews who wore a white triangle over a yellow one were called Jüdisher Rassenschänder. A black triangle designated an a-social (Asozialer). A Jewish a-social was a Jüdisher Asozialer who wore a black triangle over a yellow one. A green triangle meant a criminal who was a repeat offender; Jewish criminals wore a green triangle over a yellow one and were called Jüdisher Befristeter Vorbeugeshäftlinge or Jewish prisoners in limited preventive custody.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses (Bibelforscher) wore purple triangles, and the Sinti and Roma (Gypsies) wore a brown triangle. The work-shy (Arbeitsscheuer) wore white triangles at Sachsenhausen. Non-Jewish race defilers, or those who broke the 1935 Nürnberg laws against race mixing, wore a triangle with a black border around it.

Because Sachsenhausen was near Berlin, which was the mecca for homosexuals at that time, Sachsenhausen was the concentration camp that had the most homosexual prisoners of any of the Nazi camps. Homosexuals wore a pink triangle (Rosa Winkle).

On my visit to the Dachau Memorial Site in 1997, I learned that prisoners who were terminally ill were sent to Hartheim Castle for mercy killing.  A doctor had to sign the order, giving the cause of the illness.

Hartheim Castle in Austria is where handicapped people were killed.

Hartheim Castle in Austria was where severely handicapped people were killed.

None of the former concentration camps, that I have visited, had a display that included a black triangle worn by a handicapped person. That is why I was very surprised to read a news article about a memorial that is soon going up in Berlin, in honor of the handicapped people who wore black triangles in the concentration camps, where they were killed.  This is news to me!

Proposed "euthanasia monument" will be a blue wall

Proposed “euthanasia monument” will be a blue wall

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

New Berlin memorial revives memories of doctors’ role in Nazi holocaust

By Dr. Peter Saunders

Editor’s note. Dr. Saunders is a former general surgeon and is CEO of Christian Medical Fellowship, a UK-based organization with 4,500 UK doctors and 1,000 medical students as members.

Officials gathered in Berlin [in early July] to lay the foundations for a monument to the people killed as part of the Nazi ‘euthanasia’ programs.

The symbolic site at Tiergartenstrasse 4 was chosen as it was the headquarters of the original project.

The planned exhibit will be dedicated to the victims of the ‘euthanasia’ program, codenamed ‘T4’, used by the Nazis to kill those with physical or mental illnesses.

It will be situated not far from a memorial to the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust opened in 2005 and a memorial to the half a million Roma victims of the Nazis opened in 2012.

Between January 1940 and August 1941 about 70,000 people were killed under the T4 programme. Many were sent to gas chambers, others were killed by lethal injection.

The programme was ostensibly shut down in 1941, partly after church protests, but it continued in secret. Historians estimate that between 200,000 and 300,000 people who were either psychotherapy patients or physically disabled were killed altogether.

The planned monument will be a long, blue glass wall – designed by the architects Ursula Wilms and Heinz W. Hallman, along with the artist Nikolaus Koliusis and the federal government plans to contribute 500,000 euros ($643,200) to the costs.

The finished site is tentatively scheduled for inauguration in the second half of 2014. [...]

Many still fail to appreciate the role of doctors in the Nazi holocaust but what ended in the 1940s in the gas chambers of Auschwitz, Dachau and Treblinka had much more humble beginnings in the 1930s in nursing homes, geriatric hospitals and psychiatric institutions all over Germany.

When the Nazis arrived, the medical profession was ready and waiting.

The medical and other healthcare staff from T4 and the early killing centres based in hospitals were later redeployed for the killing of Jews, Gypsies, Poles, Russians and disloyal Germans. By 1943 there were 24 main death camps (and 350 smaller ones) in operation.  [...]

Britain’s Black Triangle Campaign, which was set up to combat discrimination against disabled people, uses as its symbol the ‘black triangle’ which the Nazis forced people with mental and other disabilities to wear in the extermination camps during the Holocaust.

The generic classification they used was ‘arbeitsscheu’ – literally ‘workshy’.

The lessons are clear. The holocaust had small beginnings and advanced in a series of imperceptibly small steps. The medical profession accepted its basic premises (that there is such a thing as ‘a life not worth living’ and that killing such people was ‘an act of mercy’) and failed to protest whilst a small section of its members actively acquiesced to involvement.

The Nazi euthanasia program began in August 1939 when a five-month-old baby boy, named Gerhard Kretschmar, was “put to sleep” after the boy’s father made a request to Adolf Hitler for a “mercy killing.” Hitler sent his personal physician, Karl Brandt, to conduct a medical examination before giving his permission for the infant to be given a lethal injection.

Karl Brandt was put on trial at Nuremberg in the “Doctor’s Trial.” In his testimony, Brandt said that the baby’s father, Richard Kretchmar, had written to Hitler’s office in early 1939, asking for permission to kill his blind and deformed son. The following quote is from Brandt’s testimony:

“The father of a deformed child wrote to the Fuhrer with a request to be allowed to take the life of this child or this creature. Hitler ordered me to take care of this case. The child had been born blind, seemed to be idiotic, and a leg and parts of the arm were missing.”

An estimated 8,000 deformed children were killed in the same manner, some without the consent of their parents.

The Nazi euthanasia program was code-named T4, named after the address on Tiergartensstrasse in Berlin; this was the street address of the Privatkanzlei des Führers run by Philip Bouhler.  This is approximately where the new memorial to the victims, who were killed in the euthanasia program, will be located.

By the beginning of 1940, six hospitals were involved in these “mercy killings.” Records discovered in 2003 show that the euthanasia program was eventually extended to 296 medical facilities in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Poland, where mentally and physically disabled children and adults were injected, gassed or starved to death.

The Nazis made a documentary film of some of the adult victims before they were killed; this was an attempt to justify the murder of disabled and deformed people. Many of the victims, who were crippled by a birth defect called spina bifida, are shown in the film, walking on all fours. This film is not shown at the Hartheim Memorial Site.  The film used to be available on the Internet, but is no longer shown.

January 2, 2013

U.S. Senate voted against UN Convention on the rights of Persons with disabilities — could this lead to another Holocaust?

In an article which you can read in full here, Richard Hermann wrote, regarding the proposed United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities:

Had such an international compact been in place in the mid-1930s, the U.S. might have had both the moral authority and the gumption to challenge Nazi Germany’s euthanasia program, which resulted in the murder of several hundred thousand disabled individuals and served as the pilot program that matured into the Auschwitz, Treblinka, Sobibor and Chelmno gas chambers of unspeakable horror. There are plenty of countries today that discriminate against their intellectually and physically challenged fellow citizens. Without being a treaty participant, the U.S. will have no international clout with respect to influencing them to do the right thing.

The problem with this is that America had an euthanasia program before Hitler gave permission for euthanasia in Germany. Schloss Hartheim (Hartheim Castle), where the Nazis euthanized “disabled individuals,” has exhibits which show that euthanasia was being done in America.

Schloss Hartheim in the town of Alkoven, Austria where disabled persons were euthanized by the Nazis

Schloss Hartheim in the town of Alkoven, Austria where disabled persons were euthanized by the Nazis

One room, in the exhibit area in the Hartheim Castle, has posters from America, as shown in the two photographs below. These posters promote the idea that heredity is to blame for the mentally and physically handicapped. In Hitler’s Germany, deformed and mentally retarded persons, who had been institutionalized by their families, were sent to Hartheim Castle or the five other euthanasia centers, where they were killed. The Nazis kept track of how much money the government had saved by putting these people to death. After the war these documents were found by General Patton’s army. The total amount saved by killing over 70,000 handicapped people was 885,000,000 Reichsmark or 3 billion dollars in today’s money.

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle

The Nazi euthanasia program began in August 1939 when a five-month-old baby boy, named Gerhard Kretschmar, was “put to sleep” after the boy’s father made a request to Adolf Hitler for a “mercy killing.” Hitler sent his personal physician, Karl Brandt, to conduct a medical examination before giving his permission for the infant to be given a lethal injection.

Karl Brandt was put on trial at Nuremberg in the “Doctor’s Trial.” In his testimony, Brandt said that the baby’s father, Richard Kretchmar, had written to Hitler’s office in early 1939, asking for permission to kill his blind and deformed son. The following quote is from Brandt’s testimony:

“The father of a deformed child wrote to the Fuhrer with a request to be allowed to take the life of this child or this creature. Hitler ordered me to take care of this case. The child had been born blind, seemed to be idiotic, and a leg and parts of the arm were missing.”

An estimated 8,000 deformed children were killed by the Nazis in the same manner, some without the consent of their parents.

The Nazi euthanasia program was code-named T4, named after the address on Tiergartensstrasse in Berlin; this was the street address of the Privatkanzlei des Führers run by Philip Bouhler. By the beginning of 1940, six hospitals were involved in these “mercy killings.” Records discovered in 2003 show that the euthanasia program was eventually extended to 296 medical facilities in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Poland where mentally and physically disabled children and adults were injected, gassed or starved to death.

The Nazis made a documentary film of some of the adult victims before they were killed. Many of the victims, who were crippled by a birth defect called spina bifida, are shown in the film, walking on all fours. This film is not shown at the Hartheim Castle Memorial Site.

The following quote is from Richard Hermann’s article:

On Dec. 4, the Senate voted against ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which had previously been approved by 155 nations. The treaty was signed by President Obama in 2009 and is strongly supported by every living ex-President.

The purpose of the present Convention is to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent dignity.

This is the dire menace that 38 Republicans object to in the treaty, consumed by the far-fetched and utterly absurd and baseless notion that this might be a threat to U.S. sovereignty and — get this — to the right to home-school children! Moreover, the language of the treaty is based wholly on the 22-year old Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), signed by President George H.W. Bush, which jumped America to the forefront of world leadership with respect to guaranteeing disability rights. The treaty itself takes its direction from the ADA, toward which goal it aims to point the rest of the world’s nations.

The title of the exhibits at Hartheim Castle is “Wert des lebens” which means “the value of life” in English. This was also the theme of the Memorial Site when I visited it in 2003. The Memorial Site promotes the concept that handicapped students should be mainstreamed in the schools. The exhibits put the issue of the handicapped into a positive perspective; they are shown as being “worthy of life” and as people who should be treated with respect.

Before sending each victim into the gas chamber at Hartheim Castle, the Nazis took their photograph. Instead of showing the photographs of the pathetic, institutionalized people who were killed at Hartheim, there are present-day photos of 3 handicapped students and two mentally or physically challenged adults who are leading normal lives.

The Memorial Site at Hartheim Castle promotes the idea that the Holocaust grew out of the German euthanasia program.  The photo below shows an exhibit about Franz Stangl, one of the men who worked at Hartheim Castle and was later involved with two of the “death camps” for Jews.

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle shows Franz Stangl

Exhibit at Hartheim Castle shows photo of Franz Stangl

Franz Stangl was appointed by Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler to be the superintendent of the T4 Euthanasia Program at Schloss Hartheim in 1940. He was later transferred to the Sobibor “extermination camp” in Poland in March 1942 where he was the Commandant until September 1942. He was then transferred to the “extermination camp” at Treblinka. Stangl is pictured on the poster above; his photo is on the far right in the left-hand column.

The Nazi euthanasia program was code-named T4, named after the address on Tiergartensstrasse in Berlin; this was the street address of the Privatkanzlei des Führers run by Philip Bouhler. By the beginning of 1940, six hospitals were involved in these “mercy killings.” Records discovered in 2003 show that the euthanasia program was eventually extended to 296 medical facilities in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Poland where mentally and physically disabled children and adults were injected, gassed or starved to death.

The Hartheim Castle Memorial Site has a ramp through the “gas chamber,” where the handicapped were allegedly killed by carbon monoxide.  The three photos below show the entrance, the gas pipe and the exit from the alleged “gas chamber.”

Entrance into the Hartheim Castle gas chamber

Entrance into the Hartheim Castle gas chamber from the reception area

Pipe for carbon monoxide inside Hartheim Castle gas chamber

Pipe for carbon monoxide inside Hartheim Castle gas chamber

Exit from Hartheim Castle gas chamber

Exit from Hartheim Castle gas chamber

The photo immediately above shows the exit from the Hartheim Castle “gas chamer,” which is a reconstruction.  On the far left is the pipe for carbon monoxide and in the background is a light shining on the spot where the one cremation oven stood.

The official version of the Holocaust is that the genocide of the Jews grew out of the German euthanasia program.

This quote is from Wikipedia gives the official history of the Holocaust:

The Nazi euthanasia program was code-named T4, named after the address on The T4 programme is thought to have developed from the Nazi Party’s policy of “racial hygiene”, the belief that the German people needed to be “cleansed” of “racially unsound” elements, which included people with disabilities. According to this view, the euthanasia programme represents an evolution in policy toward the later holocaust of the Jews of Europe.

Update, 1:12 p.m.

It should be noted that the “gas chamber,” which is shown to tourists who visit Hartheim Castle, is a reconstruction.  In April 1989, Fred A. Leuchter, Jr. visited Hartheim Castle and made a report in which he said that the alleged “gas chamber” in the Castle could not have been a gas chamber. Leuchter had been commissioned to do this report in connection with his testimony as an expert witness for the defense in a criminal case in Canada in which a Holocaust denier, Ernst Zündel, was charged with “spreading false news” when he published a booklet entitled “Did Six Million Really Die?”

The following quote is from Leuchter’s report on the Hartheim “gas chamber”:

It appears by construction that this facility would not lend itself for use as a gas execution installation, the walls being too thick for the installation of gassing equipment. Certainly, because of the construction, any changes would be visible, and not easy to conceal. There is no provision for a gas stack for evacuation of the gas-air mixture and no way to install one. The window would certainly leak, allowing large volumes of deadly gas to escape. No samples were taken at this location because of the extensive remodeling to the facility which decidedly would obscure any test results.

For the record, the alleged gas chamber would have held only some 24 persons, utilizing the nine (9) square foot rule. Without an exhaust system this room would require at least one week to vent (refer to Dachau).

Resultant to an indepth investigation of this installation, this investigator categorically states that in his best engineering opinion this facility was not ever utilized for, and could never have supported gas executions. The actual use of this room is unknown to the investigator. Based on a comparison with its mirror image on the other side of the facility, it could have been a store room.

Update 1:37 p.m.

Why do I write blog posts like this one?  Am I a revisionist, the polite term for a Holocaust denier?  No, I am not a revisionist, nor a denier.  I am just trying to reach students like the group who went on a trip to Hartheim Castle; the trip was reported by this blogger.  This quote is from a blog post about the trip to Hartheim Castle:

Our guide Stephan toured us through the castle, explaining the history and horrific function the castle once held. The students and I shuffled behind, saying little, letting Stephan’s confident and rehearsed commentary help us to comprehend what our eyes could not: the files full of statistics and tallies documenting the dead, and the colorful and meticulous graphs and charts declaring the capital, potatoes and manpower saved by a society no longer having to tend to the needs of the disabled. Our throats closed as we hustled through the narrow room with peeling paint that served as the gas chamber, and our stomachs clenched tight as we passed into the adjoining rooms which had held piles of rigid corpses waiting to be fed into the now-dormant ovens which once burned hot, day and night.

January 11, 2012

“Creating the Master Race” an exhibit at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 10:38 am

Yesterday, I blogged about the Courage to Remember exhibit which is currently traveling around to American colleges.  Another USHMM exhibit, entitled Creating the Master Race is also available on loan to colleges and universities. This exhibit explains the connection between the Nazi program of killing the handicapped, in order to “create a Master Race,” and the subsequent killing of the Jews, which was part of the Nazi plan to keep the German race pure.

The Jewish Weekly has a current article about two students at Emory University (where Deborah Lipstadt is a professor) who had many discussions about “how doctors and nurses were complicit in mass murder” during the Holocaust.

This quote is from the article in The Jewish Weekly:

A Ghanaian medical student at Emory University in Atlanta, Pierre Ankomah had a Jewish roommate with whom he’d often discuss how their profession “seriously erred” during the years of the Holocaust, how doctors and nurses were complicit in mass murder.

They spent many hours “questioning why people were able to, en masse, buy into the hideous ideas that were perpetrated by the Nazis,” he says. “Why were there such few and muted voices of dissent?”  [...]

Along with other future members of the medical profession, he [the Ghanaian student] visited the venues of the Final Solution as part of a program sponsored by New York’s Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust to teach young professionals the moral lessons offered by the Shoah. The museum recently featured those lessons in the exhibit, “Creating the Master Race,” on loan from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.

The gist of the article in The Jewish Weekly is contained in this quote:

The doctors who aided and enabled the Nazis’ racist policies — in the name of eugenics, the Nazi-endorsed study of heredity — provide the strongest example imaginable of people abandoning their morality and professional ethics …..

You can read about the USHMM exhibit Creating the Master Race here.  The title of the exhibit is “Deadly Medicine Creating the Master Race.”  A video on the USHMM website explains it.

This quote is from the USHMM website:

From 1933 to 1945, Nazi Germany carried out a campaign to “cleanse” German society of individuals viewed as biological threats to the nation’s “health.” Enlisting the help of physicians and medically trained geneticists, psychiatrists, and anthropologists, the Nazis developed racial health policies that began with the mass sterilization of “genetically diseased” persons and ended with the near annihilation of European Jewry.

A few years ago, I went to see Hartheim Castle where handicapped and mentally ill people were killed.  From the exhibits there, I learned why Holocaust historians maintain that there was a direct connection between the killing of the “genetically diseased” and the genocide of the Jews.    (more…)

May 31, 2011

The crematorium at Hartheim Castle

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 11:05 am

A light shines on the spot where the oven was located in the Hartheim Castle Crematorium

Hartheim Castle in Austria is now a Memorial Site in commemoration of the disabled people who were murdered in the gas chamber there during World War II.  The room shown in the photo above is sometimes mistakenly identified as the gas chamber, but it is actually the crematorium where the bodies were burned; a light shines on the exact spot where a single oven was located. (People were not killed in the cremation ovens as some people believe.) Note the vaulted ceiling which shows how the ceiling of the gas chamber looked before a passageway for a ramp was cut through the walls.     (more…)

January 12, 2011

the letter from Dr. Sigmund Rascher to Himmler which proves that a gas chamber was built at Dachau

Filed under: Dachau, Germany — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 7:52 am

Some of the tour guides at Dachau tell visitors today that the gas chamber, located just outside the concentration camp, was used a few times to gas a small number of prisoners, although not for mass gassing.  Some of the guides tell visitors that the gas chamber was used to test combat gases on prisoners in the camp.  This claim is based on a letter that was written by Dr. Sigmund Rascher to Heinrich Himmler, in which Rascher mentioned that “the same installation as in Linz is to be built at Dachau” and that he wanted to use the new installation to test combat gases.   (more…)

October 21, 2010

“life unworthy of life” (in German: “Lebensunwertes Leben”)

Filed under: Germany, Health — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 10:26 am

The title of this post, “life unworthy of life” (in German: “Lebensunwertes Leben”) was used in Nazi Germany in reference to the people who were killed because they were mentally or physically disabled. The Nazi concept of “unwertes Leben” or “unworthy lives” is believed to have eventually led to the Holocaust.

In the news recently, there is the sad story of a seven-year-old girl who was the victim of cyber-bullying by an adult neighbor who posted horrible photos, alluding to the fact that the child will eventually die of Huntington’s Disease.  The little girl’s mother recently died from Huntington’s Disease, which is a genetic condition.

The recent news stories, which mention Huntington’s Disease, reminded me that, in Nazi Germany, this disease was on the list of conditions that Germany attempted to wipe out by sterilizing people — against their will, if necessary.

On July 14, 1933, Hitler signed the “Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring,” one of the first laws Hitler implemented after he was appointed the Chancellor of Germany. In German, it was called Gesetz zur Verhütung erbkranken Nachwuchses and it was the law of compulsory sterilizations. The ideology of the Nazi Party included the concept of  “racial hygiene” which was the plan to produce a race of strong, healthy people.

Article I of the “Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring” defined who was to be examined and then sterilized:

(1) Anyone who suffers from an inheritable disease may be surgically sterilized if, in the judgment of medical science, it could be expected that his descendants will suffer from serious inherited mental or physical defects.

(2.) Anyone who suffers from one of the following is to be regarded as inheritably diseased within the meaning of this law:

1. congenital feeble-mindedness
2. schizophrenia
3. manic-depression
4. congenital epilepsy
5. inheritable St. Vitus dance (Huntington’s Chorea)
6. hereditary blindness
7. hereditary deafness
8. serious inheritable malformations

Hartheim Castle in Austria was the place where disabled people were killed during the Nazi regime.  The castle has now been turned into a memorial site which is used to promote the idea that disabled people are “worthy to live” and that disabled children should be “main-streamed” in elementary schools, not sent to special schools for the handicapped.  You can read all about the memorial site at Hartheim here.  You can read about the disabled people who were gassed to death at Hartheim here.

I don’t know if Huntington’s Disease has been wiped out in Germany, but I do know that hereditary deafness has not been eliminated.  On one of my many trips to Germany, I observed a mother and father who looked enough alike to be brother and sister; their son looked exactly like his parents.  All three were using sign language.

This family was eating in a restaurant. When another person came in and communicated with them in sign language, it was clear that none of them could hear. The visitor was able to speak to others in the restaurant. If any of the three people in this family had been able to hear, the visitor would have spoken to them, instead of using sign language.

The young boy in this family will probably carry on the tradition by marrying a girl who is deaf, producing more children with hereditary deafness.  Meanwhile, the children of former Nazis are having themselves sterilized to prevent future generations of evil German monsters.

If I had Huntington’s Disease, I would adopt a child, rather than passing on this disease to future generations.

August 30, 2010

How many of the Nazi gas chambers are still in existence?

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , , , , — furtherglory @ 7:34 am

This morning I read on a blog that there are only four Nazi gas chambers still in existence in all of Europe.  It took me a minute to think of which four gas chambers, to which this blogger might be referring.

It is universally accepted by Holocaust historians that there were six extermination camps where Jews were gassed during the Holocaust: Auschwitz-Birkenau, Majdanek, Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka.

The gas chambers at Chelmno, Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka were destroyed more than 65 years ago and nothing remains of them. Three of the  four gas chambers at Birkenau were destroyed by the Nazis in January 1945 and one was destroyed by the prisoners in October 1944.

There were also gas chambers at Mauthausen, Dachau, Sachsenhausen, Ravensbrück and Stutthof.  The  original gas chambers at Mauthausen, Dachau and Stutthof are still there, as are the gas chambers in Building No. 41 at Majdanek. There are also reconstructed gas chambers at Majdanek and the main Auschwitz camp.

One of the euthanasia gas chambers, the one at Hartheim Castle, was also used to gas concentration camp prisoners from Dachau and Mauthausen.  There is a building located about a mile from the Natzweiler camp, which is alleged to have been a gas chamber where 86 Jews from Auschwitz were brought to be killed; you can read about it on another blog post that I wrote.

I have visited and photographed five of the remaining gas chambers in Europe: Auschwitz, Majdanek, Dachau, Mauthausen and Hartheim.  I also visited the site of “the little white house” which was used at Birkenau before the four large gas chambers were built.  The location of “the little red house,” which was the first gas chamber at Birkenau, is unknown.

Dachau gas chamber

Reconstructed gas chamber at Auschwitz main camp

Mauthausen gas chamber

One of the gas chambers in Building No. 41 at Majdanek

Building No. 41 at Majdanek has four gas chambers

Gas chamber at Hartheim Castle

Stutthof Gas Chamber

Stutthof Gas Chamber

You can see more photos of the reconstructed gas chamber in the main Auschwitz camp here and more photos of the Hartheim gas chamber here.

The remains of “the liitle white house” used as a gas chamber at Birkenau

You can read all about “the little white house” here.

Ruins of the Sachsenhausen gas chamber

The floor of the Sachsenhausen gas chamber is shown in the photo above.  The gas chamber was disguised as a shower room with one floor drain.  In the background, you can see the ruins of the cremation ovens.  You can read about the Sachsenhausen gas chamber here.

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