Scrapbookpages Blog

October 6, 2016

another trip hosted by the Holocaust Educational Trust [HET]

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 10:02 am

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The photo, that is shown above, is at the top of a recent news article, which you can read in full at http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/local-news/sombre-auschwitz-visit-irvine-kilwinning-8990753

If you have extremely good eyesight, you might be able to see, in the photo above, the words “Arbeit macht Frei”  which are over the entrance into the main Auschwitz camp.

In English, “Arbeit macht Frei” is translated into “work will set you free”. This slogan has now been twisted into “Nazis killed Jews”. The original meaning was that work would set one free in the spiritual sense, not literally.

The following quote is from the news article:

Begin quote

The former Nazi concentration camp [Auschwitz-Birkenau], now an eerie expanse of ramshackle buildings, once housed 90,000 prisoners during World War II.

It is not known exactly how many people were murdered here in the years the camp was operational, from 1941 to 1945, but it is thought to be around 1.2million [including 1.1 million Jews].

Earlier in the day we [British students] began our trip with a brief visit to a Jewish cemetery in the small town of Oswiecim, better known by its [it’s] German name of Auschwitz.

In 1939, around 58 per cent of the town’s population were [was] Jewish, and before the war they led normal, peaceful lives and when they died they were buried with dignity. But during the war, the Nazis used the resting place [cemetery] as a toilet and knocked down all of the Jewish headstones, using them to form paths and roads in and around Auschwitz.

End quote

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The photo above is a still shot from the movie “Shindler’s List” in which it was claimed that Jewish tombstones were dug up and used to pave the roads around Auschwitz. This is total fiction. The Germans were the best engineers in the world. Did they build the Autobahn out of Jewish tombstones?  Holocaust True Believers would have you believe that they did!

April 27, 2016

The scale of Birkenau is overwhelming, and it was built for the sole purpose of murdering Jews

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 1:23 pm
British students on HET tour at Birkenau

British HET tour at Auschwitz-Birkenau

The title of this blog post comes from a British news article which you can read in full at  http://www.watfordobserver.co.uk/news/14454508.Time_will_not_allow_us_to_forget/

The following quote is from the news article:

Begin quote

By 1941 the Nazi genocide had stepped up and [the] Auschwitz [main camp] became too small due to the sheer number of prisoners arriving from across occupied countries.

Two miles away is the site of Auschwitz-Birkenau – a camp with an area covering an area the size of 250 football pitches [425 acres].

The scale of Birkenau is overwhelming, and harrowingly it was built for the sole purpose of murdering Jews.

The iconic railway tracks and entrance dominate the bleak and desolate camp. It is difficult not to see the brick watch tower from any part of the site.

Rabbi Barry Marcus of London’s Central Synagogue revealed that only around 25 per cent of prisoners were taken to the camps to work, while 75 per cent were sent straight to the gas chambers.

End quote

So the stupid Nazis built a camp that was the size of 250 football fields, just for the purpose of gassing Jews.

The news article continues with this quote:

Begin quote

The first camp we visited was Auschwitz [main camp], one hour from Krakow airport.

Sign in main Auschwitz camp warns against touching fence

Sign in main Auschwitz camp warns against touching the electrified fence

Originally the [Auschwitz main camp] site was used as a barracks [for German soldiers] but when the Nazis invaded Poland the empty buildings became the first concentration camp in that area.

Barracks for German soldiers at Auschwitz

Barracks for German soldiers with Appell Platz at Auschwitz main camp

Barrack building Auschwitz main camp

Barrack building in the  Auschwitz main camp was for German soldiers

Auschwitz barracks in winter 2006 Photo Credit: José Ángel López

Auschwitz barracks in winter 2006
Photo Credit: José Ángel López

As we made our way under the ”Arbeit Macht Frei” sign at the gates [into the main camp], the persecution was revealed in greater detail.

The sign translates as ‘work makes you free’ – a sick joke by the Nazis, as nobody was supposed to leave the [main Auschwitz] camp alive.

More likely than not you have heard horrifying stories from survivors or other Holocaust educators but the true extent cannot be described without seeing it for yourself.

End quote

What do British students learn from their HET tours? They learn to worship Jews and to hate Germans.  “that’s all ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.” [Ode to a Grecian urn]

 

February 8, 2016

British students leave their brains at the gate on a trip to Auschwitz

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 2:29 pm
When HET students walked into the main Auschwitz camp, it looked something like this

When British HET students walked into the main Auschwitz camp in Jan. 2016, it looked something like this scene, taken 10 years ago

You can read about the latest Holocaust Educational Trust [HET] tour of Auschwitz in this news article:

http://www.suttonguardian.co.uk/news/14261657.

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

Next, [on the tour] the gas chamber and crematorium [in the main Auschwitz camp]. Prisoners were told to remove their clothes before their “shower”, and even to remember which pegs they had left their possessions on, another perverse lie designed to keep order among the inmates.

End quote

My 2005 photo of the gas chamber in the main Auschwitz camp

My 2005 photo of the gas chamber in the main Auschwitz camp shows no shower heads, nor pegs for hanging clothes

There were no shower heads in the gas chamber in the main Auschwitz camp, and no pegs, upon which the prisoners could hang their clothes.

The article includes this photo of the scratches made by the prisoners as they were dying in the gas chamber:

Fingernail scratches on walls of gas chamber

Fingernail scratches on walls of Auschwitz gas chamber

Notice that the scratches are near the ceiling of the gas chamber. The adults held the babies up so that they could leave their marks on the ceiling as proof that people were gassed in this room. [Don’t deny this, unless you want to go to prison in 19 countries.]

This quote is also from the news article:

Slave labour was used to empty the chambers once all life had been snuffed out.

Did any of those “slave labour” men ever explain that there were no pegs for the clothing, and no shower heads on the ceiling?

This quote is also from the news article:

The 7,000 prisoners remaining at Auschwitz were liberated by the Red Army on January 27, 1945.

Why did the Nazis leave 7,000 prisoners behind when they abandoned the Auschwitz death camp? Didn’t it occur to them that these 7,000 prisoners would testify against them in future war crimes trials?

Actually, the prisoners were given the chance to march out of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp, with German soldiers leading the way, tramping down the snow. The prisoners who stayed behind decided to stay in their warm beds and wait for the Soviet soldiers to rescue them.

February 3, 2016

What British students learn from the HET tours to Auschwitz

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 8:59 am
Arbeit macht Frei gate at Auschwitz main camp REUTERS

Arbeit macht Frei gate at Auschwitz main camp
Photo credit: REUTERS

You can read about the latest British HET tour of Auschwitz in this news article:  http://www.eastlothiancourier.com/news/14248333.The_horrors_of_Auschwitz_recounted_by_North_Berwick_High_School_pupil_whose_great__great_gran_died_there/

I have written about the HET tours several times in the past.  I am very critical of this student program because I think that it gives the students the wrong impression of Auschwitz and the Holocaust.

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

Begin quote

The coldness of the gas chambers, the vast scale of [Auschwitz] Birkenau, the hallway lined with faces of prisoners who died and mounds of hair, shoes and glasses – these are the images which will have a lasting impression upon me.

[…]

One week prior to the visit, we attended the orientation seminar. This was useful as it not only allowed us to get to know the other young people who would be going through the same experience but it addressed our expectations of the camp.

[…]

At the seminar, we were incredibly privileged to have heard from survivor Ziggi Shipper. Ziggi’s story of being separated from his grandparents and imprisoned in Auschwitz to later finding his mother again after the war is truly remarkable.

End quote

I first learned about Ziggi and the hair exhibits at Auschwitz when someone made a comment on one of my very first blog posts:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2012/03/15/hair-today-gone-tommorrow-the-exhibits-at-auschwitz/

The news article about the HET tour ends with this quote:

Begin quote

I now feel ready to do this as part of the Next Steps programme, though, and hope to achieve this through various channels such as assemblies we will be presenting during Holocaust Memorial Week.

‘Arbeit Macht Frei’ – these are the hollow words which confront you as you enter Auschwitz.

‘Work sets you free’ – these are the words which met millions of prisoners, some of whom made this sign, who would never experience freedom again.

End quote

I wrote about the meaning of the Arbeit macht Frei sign on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/DachauScrapbook/KZDachau/Gatehouse.html

“Arbeit macht Frei” does NOT mean “kill the Jews” as some people might think, after reading this news article.

November 14, 2014

British students amazed by photos displayed at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Photos displayed in the Sauna building at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Photos displayed in the Sauna building at Auschwitz-Birkenau

My 2005 photo above shows a wall of photos, which are displayed in the building called the “Sauna” at Auschwitz-Birkenau. The floor in the room is covered with glass, and the wall of photos is reflected in the glass, making it look like two walls of photos, but there is only one wall and the reflection of the wall.

I previously blogged about the Sauna on this blog post: https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2010/08/31/why-was-there-a-sauna-at-auschwitz/

The photo wall at Auschwitz-Birkenau consists of photos found at the camp after it was liberated.  Allegedly, these photos were selected and saved, by the Nazis, from a larger number of photos, which had been brought to the camp by the Jews.

How did the Nazis decide which photos to save and which to burn? Look at the photo above again.  Almost all of the photos, on display at Auschwitz, are color photos.

Recently, a group of British students were taken on a tour of Auschwitz by the HET; you can read about the trip here.

This quote is from the news article about the HET trip:

We were taken to a room which was full of photographs on display. When the prisoners packed a suitcase to leave their homes, the most important possessions were photographs.

The majority of them [the photos] were burned by the Nazis. But a small collection were left behind. It was touching and poignant to see all the smiling faces of families and loved ones of those who perished in Auschwitz.

I find it strange that the students were so concerned with the photos, and not with the purpose of the Sauna building, where the exhibit of the photos is located.

What criteria did the Nazis use in selecting photos to save?

Look at the photo below, which shows a wall of photos at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC.

Hall of photo at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Hall of photo at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Notice that the photos, in the display shown above, are mostly black and white, while the photos displayed in the Sauna at Auschwitz are almost all color photos.

I can see it all now: those evil Nazis were going through the luggage of the prisoners and sorting the photos into piles for a future Museum at Auschwitz, and a future Museum in America.

One thing that the British students, on the HET trip, might not have realized is that most people were not taking color photos with their primitive box cameras in the 1940ies.  Color film was expensive and it had to be sent to Rochester, New York to be processed.

The first modern color film, Kodachrome, was introduced in 1935 based on three colored emulsions. Most modern color films, except Kodachrome, are based on technology developed for Agfacolor (as ‘Agfacolor Neue’) in 1936.

Unfortunately, when WWII came along, color photography was still a novelty. The first batches of color film from Kodak were hard to find, leaving combat and civilian photographers with little choice but to record events in black and white.

When I was taking photos back in the 1940ies, I had a box camera like the one shown in the photo below.

Box camera used in the 1940ies in America

Box camera used in the 1940ies in America

Students today, who are taking selfies with their iPhone do not realize the significance of color photos in 1944.  A person who had color photos of their family members, in the 1940s, was a rich privileged person.

The purpose of the Sauna building, where the exhibit of the photos is located, was to save lives by disinfecting the clothing to prevent the spread of disease, and to provide a shower for incoming prisoners in an effort to prevent disease.

The room with the photos is at the end of the present-day tour of the Sauna.  These students weren’t impressed by the effort to save lives; they were only concerned with the (dubious) claim that the Nazis went through the photos in the luggage and callously burned some of them, while selecting other photos to save.

I suspect that the students were not told that this building was closed to tourists for 60 years.  I believe that the building was closed so that tourists would not realize that the Nazis made a big effort to save the lives of the Jews who were sent to Auschwitz.

December 6, 2013

British students on HET tour of Auschwitz learn about “the block of death”

Filed under: Germany, Health, Holocaust — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 11:28 am

A news article, in a British newspaper, which you can read in full here tells about a recent trip, taken to Auschwitz, by 17-year-old students from the UK.  Block 11, shown in the photo below, is mentioned in the article.

Block 11 at the Auschwitz main camp

Block 11 at the Auschwitz main camp

Pictured above is Block 11, the prison building, which is located inside a walled courtyard in the Auschwitz main camp. It was here, in this building, that political prisoners, brought from outside the camp, were housed while they awaited trial in the courtroom of the Gestapo Summary Court, which was in this building.

Jewish prisoners from inside Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II (Birkenau) were also brought here for punishment for what the Nazis considered serious offenses, such as sabotage in the Auschwitz factories.

My photograph above was taken in 1998, from inside the courtyard between Block 11 and Block 10. It shows the front side of the prison building, known as Block 11. On the left is the black wall, where prisoners were executed after being convicted in the courtroom that was located in Block 11.

In the photo, one can see the concrete wells placed around the basement windows so the prisoners in the cells below could not see out, but some light could enter through the open top of the well.

The windows on the ground floor have bars on them; there were dormitories with three-tiered bunk beds in these rooms, where prisoners lived while awaiting trial. The upper floor window openings, on both sides of the building, have been closed up with bricks with only a small window left at the top.

The back side of Block 11, where prisoners were housed before trial and execution

The back side of Block 11, where prisoners were housed before trial and execution

The photo above shows the other side of Block 11, where there was a gravel pit, which was used as an execution site for 152 Polish Catholic political prisoners. Note that the windows have been blocked up.

The gravel pit is where, in 1988, Carmelite nuns placed the 26-foot souvenir cross from the Mass said by the Pope at Auschwitz II in 1979.  The cross is shown on the left side of the photo above.

Think about all this, as you read this quote from the British news article:

We continue our tour of Auschwitz I [the main camp] and hear of the atrocities committed there.

We walk past Block 11, known as the “block of death,” where prisoners were tortured and medical experiments were conducted.

We are told of the Nazi tactic of sterilising Jews and those with “genetic imperfections” so they could no longer have children with the aim that they would slowly die out.

This is all new to me.  When I first visited the Auschwitz main camp in 1998, my private tour guide told me that Block 11 was where prisoners were held until they were put on trial.  If convicted, they were taken outside to the “black wall” (between Block 11 and Block 10) where they were executed with a shot in the neck.  I was told that “medical experiments” were conducted in Block 10, the building on the other side of the courtyard, across from Block 11.

My tour guide didn’t say anything about sterilising Jews at Auschwitz. This would have been a waste of time because Hitler’s alleged plan was to kill all the Jews.

As far as sterilising people with “genetic imperfections,” I know that Hitler ordered that German people with hereditary conditions should be sterlized so that conditions such as Huntington’s disease, mental illness, and hereditary deafness, would not be passed on to future generations.  Needless to say, this is no longer done in Germany, and one can see people with hereditary conditions on the streets of German cities.

This quote is also from news article:

The pupils from Imberhorne School, 17-year-olds Ellie Radcliffe and Chania Fox, both tell me they want to hear personal stories to humanise the loss of life. This is something our guide, Phillipa Meggit, from the Holocaust Educational Trust, has said on several occasions during the journey here – look beyond the figures which you can’t quantify – how can you imagine an estimated 1.2 million people whose lives were pointlessly snuffed out? – and think about the individuals.  […]

For Chania, who lives in Crescent Road in East Grinstead, it was a pile of shoe polishes which most struck a chord.

She said: “It was the shoe polishes that really made me stop and think. Just the fact that those people were so deceived and unaware of where they were going, they brought things like that with them.”

I also noticed the small round containers of shoe polish when I visited Auschwitz, but I didn’t photograph them. The Nazis saved the shoe polish because they were planning to send it back to Germany, to give to the German people whose homes had been bombed by the Allies.

The most popular brand of shoe polish was Shinola

The most popular brand of shoe polish in America was Shinola

Shinola was the most well-know brand of shoe polish in America.  A popular expression, back in the day, was “[so and so] doesn’t know shit from Shinola.”  This could be said for the Auschwitz tour guide.

The shoe polish is representative of a different era, when people in America, as well as in Germany, polished their shoes every Saturday night, after their weekly bath in a galvinized tub in front of the kitchen stove. Everyone dressed up, back then, and put on their shined shoes, to go to church on Sunday morning.  The Jews were also shining their shoes, but on Friday night.  Who knew?