Ignorance and Holocaust Denial
Room 8 has recently seen some fools (now no longer with front page priviliges) spouting Holocaust denial bullshit. These ignorant fools claim the gas chambers didn’t exist and the mass murder committed by the Nazis never happened.
I refuse to engage Nazi apologists, but I do want to remind people that Holocaust denial ignores a huge volume of eyewitness accounts and even archaeological evidence demonstrating that YES, the Nazis DID commit mass murder, including using gas chambers.
One argument that has been made on this site is one that literally comes straight from Stormfront: that Eisenhower never mentioned the gas chambers in his memoirs. I guess these fools don’t realize that most of the camps liberated by the allies were not dedicated extermination camps and so few had gas chambers. The true extermination camps were mostly in territory liberated by the Soviets. And yet material evidence remains of the gas chambers, including detailed archaeological studies of Sobibor. For those who want to read beyond Stormfront propoganda I recommend the definitive book on Nazi Germany: The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
, which goes into great detail about the various methods of murder by the Nazis, including gas chambers.
But even without reading the excellent Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
it is easy to find direct eyewitness testimony to the Holocaust.
Let me say that when I visited my ancestral home of Rezekne, Latvia, I talked to a woman who as a child was a direct witness to the murder of Jews in Rezekne by the Einsatzgruppe A in the earlier days of the Holocaust. She survived only because a local non-Jewish family hid her.
I also dated a woman whose grandfather only survived the last days of Auschwitz by hiding under the stacked up bodies of those who had already been killed.
I guess the Holocaust deniers on this site have never bothered to talk to any survivors or any of the soldiers who liberated the camps. You have to deliberately close your eyes to reality to believe the Holocaust was some hoax.Regarding gas chambers at Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka :
There is the testimony of SS-Unterscharfuhrer Schluch testified:
“I had to show the Jews the way to the gas chambers. I believe that when I showed the Jews the way they were convinced that they were really going to the baths.
After the Jews entered the gas chambers, the doors were closed by Hackenholt himself or by the Ukrainians subordinate to him. Then Hackenholt switched on the engine which supplied the gas.
After five or seven minutes – and this is only an estimate – someone looked through the small window into the gas chamber to verify whether all those inside were dead.
Only then were the outside doors opened and the gas chambers ventilated. After the ventilation of the gas chambers a Jewish working group under the command of their Kapo’s entered and removed the bodies from the chambers.
The Jews inside the gas chambers were densely packed. This is the reason that the corpses were not lying on the floor but were mixed up in disorder in all directions, some of them kneeling, according to the amount of space they had.
The corpses were besmirched with mud and urine or with spit. I could see that the lips and tips of the noses were a bluish colour. Some of them had their eyes closed, others’ eyes rolled. The bodies were dragged out of the gas chambers and inspected by a dentist, who removed finger-rings and gold teeth. After this procedure, the corpses were thrown into a big pit.
The old wooden gassing building had insufficient capacity to deal with forthcoming transports, and these were dismantled and in a more central location a more robust structure was constructed. The new gas chambers in Belzec were operational by the middle of July 1942.
Here is the testimony of Erwin Lambert who took part in the building of the gas chambers at Sobibor:
“At that time I was assigned by Wirth to enlarge the gassing structure according to the model of Treblinka. I went to Sobibor together with Lorenz Hackenholt, who was at that time in Treblinka.
First of all I went with Hackenholt to a sawmill near Warsaw. There Hackenholt ordered a big consignment of wood for reconstruction in Sobibor. Finally both of us went to Sobibor, we reported there to the camp commander, Reichleitner. He gave us the exact directives for the construction of the gassing installations.”
The new six-room gas chamber building had a corridor that ran through its centre, and three rooms on either side. The three gas chambers were the same size as the existing one, 4 x 4 metres.
The killing capacity of the gas chambers was increased to nearly 1,300 people simultaneously. The enlarged facility became operational in October 1942.
The construction of both doors was the same as that of the doors in the old chambers. The building when viewed from Camp No 1 showed five wide concrete steps with bowls of flowers on either side. Next came a long corridor. There was a Star of David on top of the roof facing the camp, so that the building looked like an old-fashioned synagogue.
Testimony of Pavel Leleko, a Ukrainian SS Wachmann of the Treblinka death camp guard:
“When the procession of the condemned approached the gas chambers the “motorists” of the gas chambers would shout, “Go quickly or the water will get cold.”
Each group of women or men were hurried along from the rear by some German and very often the Kommandant himself – Franz accompanied by a dog. As they approached the gas chamber the people began to back away in terror.
Oftentimes they tried to turn back. At that point lashes and clubs were used. Franz immediately set upon the condemned his dog which was specially trained to snap at their sex organs. At each gas chamber there were 5-6 Germans besides the “motorists” with their dogs. With clubs and lashes they drove the people into the corridor of the gas chamber and then into the chambers.
In this the Germans would compete with the “motorists” in brutality towards the people selected to die. Marchenko for instance had a sword with which he mutilated the people. He cut the breasts of women. After the chambers were filled they slammed shut with hermetically sealed doors. The “motorists” Marchenko and Nikolay would turn on the motors.
Through pipes, exhaust gas was fed into the chambers. The process of asphyxiation began. Some time after starting the motor, the “motorists” would look into the chambers through special observation slits along side each door, to see how the killing process was going.
When questioned what they see there, the “motorists” answered that the people are writhing, twisting one another. I also tried to look in through the little window into the chamber, but somehow I did not succeed in seeing anything.
Gradually the noise in the chambers subsided. After about fifteen minutes the motors were turned off, an unusual calm set in.
Further testimony by the perpetrators themselves can be found here:
http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/ar/arperpsspeak.htmlFrom an article on forensic science used in Holocaust investigation:
In spite of testimonial evidence and intelligence on Nazi crimes against humanity gathered by the Allies and the Red Cross during the war, nothing prepared the world for the horrors that were disclosed when troops finally reached the concentration camps. In addition to the on-site photographs, movies, physical evidence, and reports by officers of the liberation forces, as well as the individual testimonies of those who survived the Holocaust or the Nazi medical experiments, a great amount of Nazi documentation and material evidence was found in prisons, in the secret police archives, and local police administrative files, which the Nazis did not succeeded in destroying before the Allied invasion….From BBC:
Nazi documents on the number and location of concentration camps all over Europe, such as one signed by the SS General Pohl, compared quantities of prisoners between 1939 and 1942, as follows: "At the beginning of war (Dachau, 1939 = 4,000 prisoners, today, 8,000; Sachsenhausen, 1939 = 6,500, today, 10,000; Buchenwald, 1939 = 5,300, today, 9,000; Mauthausen, 1939 = 1,500, today, 5,500; Flossenburg, 1939 = 1,600, today, 4,700; Ravensbureck, 1939 = 2,500, today 7,500." The report continues, showing a list of new camps built between 1940 and 1942: Auschwitz (Poland), Neuengamme (Germany), Gusen (Austria), Natzweiler (France), Gross-Rosen (Germany), Lublin (Poland), Niederhagen (Germany), Stutthof (near Danzig), Arbeitsdorf (Germany). The War Crimes Branch of the Third U.S. Army (Judge Advocate Section), reported that "Concentration Camp Flossenburg was founded in 1938 as a camp for political prisoners . . . and it was not until April 1940 that the first transport of prisoners was received. . . . Flossenburg was the mother camp and under its direct control and jurisdiction were 47 satellite camps or outer-commandos for male prisoners and 27 camps for female workers . . ." The SS police (Gestapo) established a program of "extermination through work" in these camps, alternating with torture, starvation, and mass execution in gas chambers and incineration in furnaces. A secret motion picture made by the Gestapo of these mass executions was presented as evidence in the IMT court. According to surviving witnesses, when bored, the camp guards also amused themselves by randomly shooting or hanging prisoners.
EvidenceMore Evidence Against the Deniers
In February 1943 Auschwitz camp building authorities complained to Topf, the company that built the crematoria equipment, that they needed ventilation blowers 'most urgently'. Why the urgency, if this was an air-raid shelter, morgue, or delousing chamber?
There is no reputable evidence that affirms the deniers' claims.
Deniers hypothesise that the urgency was a result of official fears that the camp would be hit with a typhus epidemic, which would cause a tremendous spike in the death toll. Without the proper ventilation system, the crematoria would not be able to operate.
Deniers try to bolster their argument about the typhus by pointing to documents which show that at this point in time the planned monthly incineration rate of Auschwitz had been boosted to 120,000 bodies. Deniers claim this was because of the typhus epidemic. However, the camp's projected population was 150,000. For the deniers' explanation to make sense, in one month an epidemic would have to kill four-fifths of Auschwitz's population and the Germans would have to repopulate the camp with 120,000 people. This claim exceeded the absolute worst case epidemiological scenario.
On 6 March 1943, one of the civilian employees working on the construction of Crematorium 2 referred to the air extraction system of 'Auskleidekeller [undressing cellar] 2'. No normal morgue could require an undressing room, particularly one that was 50 yards long. In that same month, there were at least four additional references to Auskleidekeller. It is telling that civilians who, according to the deniers, were in Birkenau to work on underground morgues, repeatedly referred not to morgues but to the ventilation of the 'undressing cellars'.
In the same letter the employee asked about preheating the areas that would be used as the gas chamber. If these were morgues they should be cooled, not preheated. Heating a gas chamber, on the other hand, would speed the gassing process by more quickly vaporising the gas from the Zyklon B.
A letter dated 31 March 1943, regarding Crematorium 3, spoke of it as having a Gastür, a gas door. Deniers argue that this could mean many things. But the inventory attached to the handover documents for the crematorium states that it had a Gasdichtetür, a 'gas-tight door'. One might argue about the meaning of Gastür, but it is hard to squabble over a gas-tight door.
Deniers have said for years that physical evidence is lacking because they have seen no holes in the roof of the Birkenau gas chamber where the Zyklon was poured in. (In some of the gas chambers the Zyklon B was poured in through the roof, while in others it was thrown in through the windows.) The roof was dynamited at war's end, and today lies broken in pieces, but three of the four original holes were positively identified in a recent paper. Their location in the concrete matches with eyewitness testimony, aerial photos from 1944, and a ground photo from 1943. The physical evidence shows unmistakably that the Zyklon holes were cast into the concrete when the building was constructed.
There is much additional evidence affirming Auschwitz/Birkenau's role as a killing centre. There is no reputable evidence that affirms the deniers' claims.
It is fairly easy to refute deniers claims concerning the Holocaust because the amount of evidence supporting the gas chambers vastly outweighs denier evidence. The Leuchter report is an unreliable piece of work, holding not one ounce of truth. It consists of manipulated evidence and poor scientific methodology. Leuchter said he was an engineer who specialized in the manufacture of execution equipment and consulted prisons on the subject. In the Zundel trial, Leuchter's level of education and job training was exposed. Instead of receiving a B.A. in engineering, he graduated with one in history instead. Committing fraud ever since in telling people he was an engineer(Lipstadt 164). Knowing this, the samples and scientific examination Leuchter conducted while in Poland are unreliable as well. Who knows where this guy picked up the bricks that were said to contain no traces of Zyklon B. After the inmate uprising destroyed the gas chamber at the main camp in 1944, it was rebuilt with both old brick and brick from other parts of the camp(Lipstadt 169). So it was possible that the crematorium contained bricks in which no traces of Zyklon B could be found. If Leuchter had bothered to understand this, then, the mistake would have been avoided. He was denounced by the Judge in the Zundel trial who declared his "expert" status revoked and his testimony on the existence of gas chambers invalid because Leuchter "hasn't any expertise"(Lipstadt 166). Basically, after his trip to Poland and testifying in the Zundel trial, all Fred Leuchter can do is become a full-time Holocaust denier.
The deniers claim the lack of blue staining on the gas chamber walls as evidence that genocide did not occur. Comparing the delousing chambers to the gas chambers and stating that delousing chambers contain blue bricks, while the other does not. When delousing clothing it takes many hours for the chemical to penetrate and kill the vermin, be it lice, rats, or beetles. These creatures are much harder to kill than humans by the gas. Lice, which were the main victims of delousing chambers, have a stronger tolerance to Zyklon B and it takes "a more concentrated exposure to cyanide gas over a longer period of time to kill lice than to kill humans"(Lipstadt 168). At the Auschwitz- Birkenau camps delousing took somewhere between 16 and 18 hours until everything was cleansed(Pressac 59). While lingering the room the for so long, Zyklon B would be more likely to soak into the walls. With 16 hours of exposure any chemical would soak into the encasing wall. In relation to the gas chambers, the Zyklon B was inside the room for only a brief period of time. The entire process, including the extraction of the bodies took no more than a four hours(Gutman 170f.). "About a half-hour after the induction of the gas, the ventilation was turned on, the door opened"(Gutman 170). With such a short exposure time, the gas was unable to soak into the walls, thus not creating a blue stain.
The belief that the gas Zyklon B could have reacted with heat and resulting in an explosion was far-fetched. As discussed above the amount of gas used in the gas chambers was very small, therefore reducing the chances of an accident. The ventilation system also extracted the gas quickly and sent it directly outside(Lipstadt 168). With the existence of the delousing chambers seen by both the deniers and true historians alike, a case is made against the exploding gas by their existence. The amount of gas used to delouse is much greater than used for mass murder and no reported explosive accidents near any delousing chambers occurred. The deniers seemed to have been reaching a little far on this on.
Leuchter was reported saying the facilities people consider the gas chambers lacked the proper sealing making them ineffective. He cites the doors and windows as evidence. The gas chambers that were, in actuality, sealed quite well. The Nazis either transformed a delousing chamber into a gas chamber, or created a new one from basically delousing facility blueprints, both ensuring a sealed room. Delousing chambers needed complete sealing just as much as gas chambers, most likely even more. With the amount of gas used in the delousing chamber, the danger that some would escape is even greater. And I know the Germans wouldn't want to endanger any of their precious Aryans. Jean-Claude Pressac documents the sealed rooms in his book, Auschwitz: Technique and operation of the gas chambers. In it are pictures of the outside doors that lead into a gassing room. These doors are obviously sealed and sealed well. There are double bar locks on the doors, along with thick glass peepholes. The peepholes were first glass and then after being broken by dying inmates they were covered with pieces of iron. Basically, the doors look as though nothing could escape from inside(Pressac 28f.) With delousing having as high a priority as the gas chambers, in terms of sealing, it would be against all available evidence to states neither was properly sealed.
Deniers believe that in order for gas extraction to occur, a strong ventilation system needs to exist. They claim that no such system was working in the Auschwitz gas chambers due to lack of evidence in the ruins(Leuchter 4). The amount of blueprints on the subject contradict this denial. These blueprints show exactly where the ventilation shafts ran and labeled them accordingly. The firm Topf & Sons built the crematoriums II through V and used a ventilation specialist. In II and III the gas chambers were underground and the blueprints show the ventilation system running parallel to the room itself(Pressac 26f.). In Pressac's book, he documents the two crematorium with the cross-section of the gas chambers, II and III. He shows precisely where the ventilation ducts were located, along with an examination of the ruins to see if some still remain buried under rubble(Pressac 355f.). The time the gas was required in the killing of humans was so small that a swift ventilation system was needed and that is what they had.
Mark Weber presents aerial photographs taken in 1944 as evidence that gassings were not going on at Auschwitz(Weber, Myth and Fact 6). He claims nothing is visible from the photograph, like smoking chimneys, or piles of corpses, that would prove in 1944 at the height of the gassings, something was going on. From any aerial photograph it is difficult to decipher ground activity. Also, the photographic technology in 1944 was not what it is today. In the pictures it is possible to make out buildings and other structures, but as far as people go, it would be virtually impossible. Weber uses this piece of evidence knowing that the possibility to disprove his point is extremely slight.
On the topic of survivor testimony, only a small number are ever considered reliable evidence. In any situation, survivors include bias into their testimony, thus making it unsuitable for historical purposes(Barzun 185f.). The Commandant of Auschwitz, Rudolph Hoss, spoke of the gas chambers and their accomplishments with detail. If it didn't happen, why the specific detail? Here is an example of Hoss telling what happened inside a gas chamber after gas was released.
It could be observed through the peephole in the door that those standing nearest to the induction vents were killed at once. It can be said that about one-third died straightway. The remainder staggered about and began to scream and struggled for air. The screaming, however, soon changed to the death rattle and in a few minutes all lay still (Gutman 170).
Again, why this detail if none of it happened? Who, then, told Hoss what to say in the affidavit? in court? Butz picks at every mistake Hoss makes in the affidavit and then claims there is no validity in Hoss' testimony. In a courtroom environment, or wherever he gave the affidavit, an air of nervousness exists to which Hoss fell victim and made some mistakes.
The claim that numerous deaths were due to Typhus disease is partially true. Many did die from typhus, but it wasn't anywhere near the amount of total dead. With the extremely bad living and working conditions the inmates were subjected to, it's no wonder more didn't die from the disease than did.
A description of the archaeological investigations of Belzec can be found here:
Direct forensic evidence for the presence of traces of hydrogen cyanide in the putative gas chambers can be found here:
Here’s an article from Skeptic magazine outlining the various strands of corroborating evidence that show the gas chambers existed: