Little Grey Rabbit's Historical Skepticism Blog

Albert Goering and News of the Holocaust

Posted in Uncategorized by littlegreyrabbit on September 17, 2015

I have just completed Thirty Four: The Key to Goering’s Last Secret by William Hastings Burke, possibly the most narcissistic and self-indulgent historical study ever published.  It is about Albert, the brother of Hermann Goering, and his lobbying his brother to assist a few dozens of society prominents.  Often these are cases who had multiple people lobbying for their relief or assisting people to emigrant when it was still official policy to encourage emigration.  Some tales of resistance acts by Skoda officials are downright absurd and would find no collaboration in the archives of the victorious allies.  Archduke Joseph Ferdinand was released from Dachau in April 1938, before Albert claimed to have lobbied for his release in May 1938; in any case mostly only communists were permanently detained in the wave of arrests in the aftermath of the Anschluss.  However, in general Albert Goering comes across as a genuinely humane person, regime hostile and I am sure his efforts were gratefully appreciated by the recipients perhaps to the point of puffing up accounts of his activities after the war.  As such, it is interesting to see the accounts Albert Goering gave concerning the Holocaust during his time in American captivity after the war.


Gardelegen and Leipzig-Thekla

Posted in Other Camps, Resistance and Psychological Warfare by littlegreyrabbit on August 6, 2015

The Reader, which I vaguely recall reading the book but not the film, if I recall correctly revolves around a former female SS guard who is charged with neglected to let concentration camp inmates out of a church that has been set on fire during Allied air raids in the dying days of the war.  Life photographer Margaret Bourke-White recounts a story near Leipzig that might have represented something similar in real life:

On the afternoon of the same day that Bill Walton and I had canvassed the City Hall, we had driven to the outskirts of Leipzig to hunt up an aircraft small-parts factory which had been an 8th Air Force bombing target […]

As we searched for the factory along a narrow country road bisecting ploughed fields, we began to smell a peculiar odor, quite different from anything in our experience.  We followed the smell until we saw, across a small meadow, a ten-foot barbed-wire fence which, curiously, seemed to surround nothing at all.  Parking the jeep, we ran through a small gate into the enclosure, and found ourselves standing at the edge of an acre of bones.

There was no one there; that is, there was no living person.  But flying grotesquely over the patch of skulls and charred ribs, from a tall slender flag-pole, was a white surrender flag.  There was eloquent testimony that the men who had been there so recently had not willing surrendered to death.  Plunged into the four-foot wide barrier of close-meshed barbed wire were blackened human figures whose desperate attitudes showed their passionate attempts to break to freedom.  Caught in the spiked coils, they had perished, flaming torches, as they tried to escape.

Nothing was left standing among the ashes, except the incongruous flag pole at the far edge.  Dotting the ghastly mottled carpet which covered the area were dozens of identical little graniteware basins and among them a scattering of spoons. [Margaret Bourke-White in Walter Kempowski’s Swansong.  pp 39-40]


BBC on chlorine gas use in Syria

Posted in Uncategorized by littlegreyrabbit on June 24, 2014

Al Jazeera journalist, Peter Greste, was sentenced to 7 years jail in Cairo for spreading false news.  According to James Harding, Director of BBC Current Affaris and News, Peter Greste is “a hard-working, honourable journalist, with a track record of achievement….honestly practising his trade.”  Which sounds terrible, however it might be worth testing what the BBC’s idea of a hard-working, honourable journalist honestly practising his trade actually is by examining how they dealt with the report of the recent OPCW fact-finding mission regarding chemical weapon usage in Syria.  The BBC report can be read here while the actual report is uploaded here s-1191-2014_e_ .

The BBC relies heavily on Human Rights Watch for its information, who appear to be getting lazy in these days as they aren’t bothering to maintain simulacrum of credibility to their reports.  HRW alleges these stills from a youtube video indicate chemical weapons use



Sachsenhausen: Boot testing track.

Posted in Other Camps by littlegreyrabbit on March 26, 2012

An unexplored dimension of the concentration camp system is the intersection between Allied propaganda and the small number of Allied personnel who ended up imprisoned in them.  The supposed boot testing track of Sachsenhausen is an interesting case in point:

Supposed Shoe Testing Track of Sachsenhausen

Wikipedia describes the image above as: “Part of shoe testing track in Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Prisoners who belonged in “Schuhläuferkommando”, shoe testing unit had to walk on this days and days.”  British POWs captured in raids on Norway were supposedly transferred to Sachsenhausen and were forced to work in this commando, as described by MI9 historian Michael Foot: (more…)

The One True Crematorium of KL Buchenwald

Posted in Buchenwald, Essential Postings, Resistance and Psychological Warfare by littlegreyrabbit on March 22, 2012

Previous I have described how two of the supposed crematoria of Auschwitz-Birkenau were in fact bakeries, and I located the site of the genuine crematorium as most likely being located just outside the camp, behind the Central Sauna. This left a problem of the function of the Buchenwald crematorium, a building that shared very many structural features with Krema II and III of Birkenau. Simply put, its central location in the camp and structural similarity to the bakery/crematorium at Birkenau meant it in all probability was also a bakery (the crematorium ovens being installed after liberation from the 2 ovens found in Birkenau). So where, therefore, was the real crematorium located? Through a rather surprising series of steps this mystery is now also close to being solved. (more…)

Temporary Post: Scenarios of CO2 effects on global warming

Posted in Miscellanous by littlegreyrabbit on June 23, 2011

With apologies on the interruption of service, but I have been asked to lend this blog for a few days to my good friend, Mr Lamb, for a temporary post:

In discussion with a Professor Enting recently, he said the following:

But, simpliying the numbers a bit, think of it as each time you multiply the concentration by 1.5, you add about 2 degrees to the medium term warming – the instantaneous warming lags and there may be more long term warming from ice sheet feedbacks.
so 180 to 270 adds 2 degrees, 270 to 405 adds another 2, 405 to 607 adds another 2.
If you have acess to a spreadshet like excel (or the open office equivalent) you can plot up a more detailed version yourself.

So I thought what-ho, I will do that.  The problem with Professor’s Enting’s model is it fitted no actual real life points.  He admits he can’t get it to go through zero or 1 ppm CO2, he uses a figure of 2 degrees warming for industrial age increase which he admits is 2.5 times that observed, then uses 2 degrees warming for the ice-age to pre-industrial age variation; which is also too high.  In fact that the only thing it has going for it is that it fits a 2 degree warming to around 600 ppm CO2 – which seems to represent a “6 million” figure for climate scientists; you can add up your numbers anyway you like, so longs as you reach an additional 2 degrees by 600 ppm.

So lets take Prof. Enting’s logarithmic relationship and put it on a proper scientific footing.  It is commonly stated that without greenhouse insulation the earth would be 33 degrees colder or 28 degrees colder than the temperature during minima of recent ice ages.  However, it is also understood that CO2 only represents a fraction of the greenhouse gases – the bulk of the warming being provided by water vapour. So I have prepared 3 different scenarios, a conservative scenario of CO providing 15% of the GH effect, a mid range where it provides 20 % of the GH effect and a “bend over backwards” scenario where it provides 25-30% of the GH effect

TABLE: Temperature rises for each scenario of CO2 levels in ppm – starting at 180 ppm of the Ice Age minimas.

Degrees above Ice Age minimums CO2 contributing 4 degrees at 180 ppm CO2 contributing 6 degrees at 180 ppm CO2 contributing 8 degrees at 180 ppm


180 180 180



























The number bolded is that closest to what is the pre-industrial point: Conservative scenario has CO2 contributing to around 0.3 of the observed warming from the Ice Ages, the mid range scenario around 0.55 degrees contribution and the “bend over backwards scenario” contributing 0.75 degrees.

Considering that orbital variation, axial wobble and albedo feed forward almost certainly contributes the bulk of warming since the ice ages, the conservative or mid range estimate should be about right.

To get to the canonical 650 ppm CO2, under the conservative model we should expect a further 0.7 degrees rise over pre-industrial, the mid-range model a 1.0 degree rise and the “bend-over-backwards” model a whooping 1.25 degree rise.

Note, this does not mean the temperature will rise by this, simply that will be the proportion of temperature rise that can be directly attributed to CO2, without including any negative feedbacks, positive feed-forwards, variations in cloud cover, solar variation or variations in solar magnetic flux.

In the final analysis since the nature of climate science is that it can-not be a experimental science, it is impossible verify their modelling.  This makes the field susceptible to group-think and manipulating assumptions to achieve political desirable outcomes.

Correction Corner: Ian Bell of the Herald Scotland on Armenia, Hitler quotes and Churchill

Posted in Correction Corner, Miscellanous by littlegreyrabbit on March 17, 2011

I am firmly of the opinion that journalists, taken as a whole, are both honest and well-informed.  Alas, the ones that are honest are seldom well-informed and the ones that are well-informed are never honest.  A rarity is a journalist like Ian Bell of the Herald, who combines a lack or honesty with a surprising level of general ignorance.  Normally I would not bother correcting such a low profile individual, since there aren’t enough hours in the day to correct foolish statements by journalists, but Mr Bell managed to cram enough errors into this post and then refused to allow polite corrections to stand to make an exception in this case.

My interest was directed to Mr Bell and his journalism/blog by a slight interest I have in police corruption surrounding the Lockerbie investigation.  The Pan Am flight was allegedly brought down by explosives hidden in a radio cassette, using an MST-13 timer constructed in Switzlerland and sold to the Libyans, and wrapt in clothing purchased in Malta from the store of Tony Gauci.  Every one of these strands of evidence can be shown to have been deliberately fabricated by elements within the British investigation.  Tony Gauci made numerous errors in identification and his evidence was widely believed in Malta to have been that of a perjurer;  with the benefit of some 3 million dollars from the US Government the Gauci brothers have started a new life in Australia [1].  The manual of the radio cassette that supposedly contained the explosives, which was found intact by a Mrs Horton, was ripped and damaged in police custody to appear like it had been through an explosion:

Zeist Court Transcripts

“Q Right. I wonder if you would look, please, at Label 24. You’ll see there is a bag which contains items there. Do you recognise anything?

A Well, not in its present state. I’m sure when I handed it in, it was in one piece.

The MST-13 timer itself was stated by the manufacturers, MEBO telecommunications, to be a falsification and not a genuine, functioning timer.  In 2007, former employee Ulrich Lumpert, stated in an affidavit that he had given false testimony at Zeist and that in fact he had stolen a prototype MST-13 circuit board and given it to an “investigating official”. [2] In short, the entire “forensics” of the Lockerbie case was a conscious and deliberate fabrication from start to finish.  That the MST-13 timer, wrapt in Tony Gauci’s clothing, was only found many weeks after the downing of the plane also points to investigator misconduct [officially it was found on 13 January 1989, although the first documented reference to it dates from May 1989].  Mebo directors also claimed that, like the Gauci brothers, they had been offered 4 million dollars to give false testimony.

There is further evidence to support the falsificaton and planting of the MST-13, for example this affidavit:

A former Scottish police chief has given lawyers a signed statement claiming that key evidence in the Lockerbie bombing trial was fabricated.

The retired officer – of assistant chief constable rank or higher – has testified that the CIA planted the tiny fragment of circuit board crucial in convicting a Libyan for the 1989 mass murder of 270 people.

The police chief, whose identity has not yet been revealed, gave the statement to lawyers representing Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi, currently serving a life sentence in Greenock Prison.[3]

While I would have no theory of what did in fact bring down the Pan Am flight, it is worth noting that a few seconds before the explosion an unexplained radar signal turned up in close proximity to the aircraft.  As the Air Accidents Investigation Report described it:

Recorded radar information on the aircraft was available from from [sic] 4 radar sites. Initial analysis consisted of viewing the recorded information as it was shown to the controller on the radar screen, from this it was clear that the flight had progressed in a normal manner until Secondary Surveillance Radar (SSR) was lost. There was a single primary return received by both Great Dun Fell and Claxby radars approximately 16 seconds before SSR returns were lost. The Lowther Hill and St Annes radars did not see this return. The Great Dun Fell radar recording was watched for 1 hour both before and after this single return  for any signes of other spurious [sic!!!!] returns, but none was seen. The return was only present for one paint [sic] and no other explanation can be offered for its presence [Appendix page C-11]

Lockerbie Air Accident Investigation: Anomalous Radar Return

I have always been amazed at the rapidity which which the plane is supposed to have disintegrated.  As for the radar return, my only suggestion is that it was probably Al-Megrahi on his broomstick chasing the Pan Am flight, waving the samsonite suitcase and crying “You forgot this!”


Blowing up the ravine walls of Babi Yar and Rumbula

Posted in Einsatzgruppen, Police etc, Resistance and Psychological Warfare by littlegreyrabbit on March 10, 2011

I have posted previously how visiting American journalists were sceptical about what the Soviets alleged and happened at Babi Yar; what I wish to do now is examine the claims that in order to conceal the 34 000 bodies, the walls of the ravine were dynamited.  The claim is repeated in many places and may have been a finding of the trial of Sonderkommando 4a by the West German courts.  One reference will suffice here, War of Extermination: The German Military in WWII, edited by Hanse Heer et al, page 254; “Immediately following the massacre on 30 September, engineers blew up the edges of the ravine in order to cover the mass grave with stones and earth.” My view is the story about the about blowing up the walls of Babi Yar developed very early among resistance groups inside Nazi Germany, and when this claim is repeated it points not to an actual event but rather contaimination by pre-determined narrative which was never grounded in any sort of reality.

We have photographs allegedly immediately after the massacre and immediately after liberation and to my mind there is no trace of the use of explosives:

Soviet Special Commission 1943: Place of the shootings


The Temptation and Redemption of James Dalrymple

Posted in Auschwitz, Buchenwald by littlegreyrabbit on February 24, 2011

Having been rereading some of the books on the David Irving – Deboral Lipstadt libel case, I was recently remind just what extraordinary things Holocaust Fever can do to otherwise sane individuals.  One of the courtroom stoushes was whether or not the lift from the basement of Krema II and III to the ground floor would represent a bottle-neck in operations.  James Dalrymple, in a momentarily lapse in faith, wrote:

How could 500,000 bodies — the number estimated to have died in that one crematorium — be transported up a single lift-shaft, only about 9ft square. Irving demanded that Van Pelt now do the arithmetic of nightmares. How much could the lift carry? 750 kilos, 1,500 kilos, 3,000 kilos? How many bodies would that be at, say 60 kilos a body? Were they in gurneys or were they just squeezed in, like people squashed into a telephone box? How long to take each batch up to the ovens? Ten minutes, or more, each batch? Twenty corpses at a time, or 25? (more…)

Auschwitz as Transit Camp: Salonika – Auschwitz – Malkinia – ?

Posted in Aktion Reinhar(d)(t), Auschwitz, Correction Corner, Deportations by littlegreyrabbit on February 21, 2011

The Auschwitz myth revolves around the claim that everyone on an arriving transport that was not selected for labour and entered as a registered prisoner was gassed.  This claim is usually enforced by strident demands of where are all the transport records for departing trains from Auschwitz.  The fact that this questioned can not be answered depends on two factors; a) the documentation in question has probably been deliberately destroyed, b) in all other cases professional historians are supposed to exercise self-censorship and not call attention to any lacunae in historical data.

However, even the most reliable of historians can sometimes slip up and amusingly I have found one from Yitzhak Arad, who ought to have known better, showing off by quoting a document that would have been best left gathering dust in whichever file he found it. (more…)

The Treblinka Revolt: a fictional duplication of the Sobibor break-out

Posted in Aktion Reinhar(d)(t), Correction Corner by littlegreyrabbit on February 18, 2011

[Draft – This will be a work in progress as more materials come to hand]

Treblinka and Sobibor had very different public profiles during and in the years after World War II.  Most press reports and propaganda during the war and through the Nuremberg trials period focused on Treblinka, less prominent but still visible was Belzec and finally barely mentioned at all was Durchgangslager [Transit Camp] Sobibor.  It is my contention that the Treblinka Revolt never occured and the early descriptions were simply the events at Sobibor transfered for propaganda purposes to the more well known Treblinka.  To my knowledge the Treblinka revolt first appeared in the wartime account A Year in Treblinka by Yankel Wiernik, which devoted the last chapter to it – it also appeared in Vasily Grossman’s journalism and in his report The Hell of Treblinka.  I am not aware of the Sobibor escape in literature until They Fought Back appeared in 1967, a brief mention can be found in The Black Book of 1946. (more…)

The One True Crematorium at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Posted in Auschwitz, Essential Postings by littlegreyrabbit on February 11, 2011

Krema Denial claims that the buildings today known as Krema II to V were in fact not crematoria but had other functions, so the question must be asked where was the camp crematorium located and what evidence can be shown for it?  While hard evidence is of necessity not abundant, there are some intriguing indications that the site of the new and only Birkenau crematorium may well have been what is today labelled as Bunker II.  The aerial photograph of May 31 1944 as enlarged and annotated by the CIA in 1978 shows this building (see below arrow labeled “BUILDING”:)

May 1844 aerial photo of Birkenau - enlarged by CIA/Yad Vashem


Laundering a Topf Letter: Fictional Plans for a 10 oven Mauthausen Crematorium

Posted in Auschwitz, Essential Postings, Other Camps by littlegreyrabbit on February 10, 2011

A perfect example of the movable feast that is Holocaust History and the very cynical way some (but not all) archives show to the integrity of their collections is the supposed plans to build a 10 oven (30 muffles) capacity crematorium in Mauthausen in early 1945.  The legion of dedicated followers of this blog will be aware that there are some answered questions about the very simple Topf facility existing there today ( discussed here and here ).

These plans was first revealed in an exhibition in Germany called The Engineers of the “Final Solution” : Topf and Sons – Builders of the Auschwitz Ovens.  The curators produced a letter dated 10 February 1945 from J.A Topf and Sons to SS Construction Management in Mauthausen, which can only be read as a proposal to rebuild the evacuated ovens from Birkenau of “Krema II” and “Krema III” in Mauthausen.  A reproduction of the first page of the letter is below:

Topf letter of February 10 1945


Holocaust blinkers or Himmler the budding cancer epidemiologist

Posted in Experiments, Miscellanous by littlegreyrabbit on February 6, 2011

Nothing can better illustrate the stultifying dead hand of Holocaust pieties than a paper published in late 2009 looking at differing cancer rates between European heritage Jews who emigrated before WW2 and those who emigrate after.  The complete journal article is here or there is a news article in Haaretz.

Cancer rates were compared between two groups of European born Israeli Jews: 258,048 who left Europe after the war and 57,496 who emigrated before or during the conflict.  Both groups have higher cancer rates than other Jewish (eg Sephardic) or non-Jewish (eg. Arab) ethnic groups.  The study concludes there is a 17% higher rate of cancer amongst those emigrating after WW2 and suggests malnutrition or “the traumas of the Holocaust” are responsible, the reported difference being strongest in the 1940-1945 group.

Sensibly the study excluded those who had emigrated after 1989 and so avoided the contaminating influence of the large influx from the Soviet Union.  One surprising fact about the demographics is there is not the dip in numbers of those born between 1940 and 1945 (highlighted in red) that I always assumed there would be.

Group Nonexposed group, No. (%) Exposed group, No. (%)
Men Women Men Women
Total 444 484 (100.0) 463 952 (100.0) 1 804 978 (100.0) 2 206 286 (100.0)
Birth cohort
1920–1924 158 052 (35.6) 161 125 (34.7) 397 834 (22.0) 519 343 (23.5)
1925–1929 127 525 (28.7) 132 929 (28.7) 342 575 (19.0) 492 743 (22.3)
1930–1934 102 040 (22.9) 112 007 (24.1) 326 174 (18.1) 387 166 (17.6)
1935–1939 39 129 (8.8) 40 244 (8.7) 338 512 (18.8) 377 733 (17.1)
1940–1945 17 738 (4.0) 17 647 (3.8) 399 883 (22.1) 429 301 (19.5)


Rudolf Hoess on Aktion Reinhard camps: Did he have a clue about what he was saying?

Posted in Aktion Reinhar(d)(t), Auschwitz by littlegreyrabbit on February 4, 2011

It is common knowledge that Rudolf Hoess, Commandant of Auschwitz, was initially beaten heavily in giving his initial statements to the British.  However, it is usually assumed that he was beaten into telling things that he already knew.  In fact, there are a couple of indications that suggest he was signing off on information that his interrogators were supplying him.

This is most obviously the case when he deals with the Aktion Reinhardt camps.  He states he visited Treblinka sometime after being given his commission by Himmler in the summer of 1941 to turn Auschwitz into an extermination camp – yet Treblinka II (the death camp) didn’t open until July 1942.  NO-1210:

I visited TREBLINKA in Spring 1942 to inform myself about the conditions.  The following method was used in the process of extermination.  Small chambers were used equiped with pipes to induce the exhaust gas from car engines.  This method was unreliable as the engines, coming from old captured transport vehicles and tanks, very often failed to work.  Because of that the intakes could not be dealt with according to the plan, which meant to clear the Warsaw Ghetto.  According to the Camp Commandant of Treblinka 80000 people have been gassed in the course of half a year.

Half a year after the opening of Treblinka would be December 1942 – in fact supposedly Treblinka had killed 700000 in its first half year and about 300 000 in the first six weeks of operation – a far greater alleged through-put than Auschwitz is ever alleged to have achieved.  Elsewhere in his “memoirs’ he states this trip was on the same when he visited Globocnik in Lublin to pick up some machinery – again repeating the date of spring 1942.  This suggests he has no knowledge of Treblinka’s location as being in the locality of Warsaw, it is very far from Globocnik’s empire around Lublin.  Were a camp to have been visited during this trip (once we ignore the wrong date), surely Belzec or Sobibor would have been a more likely choice?  The reason, of course, was that in 1946 Treblinka was the only camp with a public profile. (more…)

Correction Corner: Bodies NOT seen by American journalists at Babi Yar

Posted in Correction Corner, Einsatzgruppen, Police etc, Miscellanous by littlegreyrabbit on February 1, 2011

The bizarre assertion that bodies were seen by American journalists at Babi Yar is made by a group of somewhat erratic bloggers can be read here.  The post begins with the perfectly reasonable observation that American journalists did see some dead bodies in a rather frightful Soviet exhibition at Klooga, Estonia.  But then tries to claim by pointing to an archived news report from 1943, that American journalists also saw dead bodies at Babi Yar.  In order to disprove this I will reproduce the entire article that they point to below (in fairness a journalist did say he saw some fingers).  In contrast to the claims of the Holocaust Controversies blogging team, the scepticism of William Lawrence regarding a massacre at Babi Yar during his visit is an established fact: “[William] Lawrence had been sceptical that a massacre had taken place at Babi Yar.  Years later, he said his doubts evaporated when he arrived at the camp near Lublin [Majdanek, 30 August 1944], Lublin” [1].

Why this scepticism might exist can be easily understood when viewing the photographic materials produced by the Soviet Special Commission of 1943.  I reproduce a few of these photos and the rest can be viewed offsite here.  I should add I have quite a bit of material regarding Babi Yar, problems with its documentation and twisted path of its genesis, but I won’t be presenting it at this stage – although as always the case, there is certain to have been some level of executions at various points during the occupation.


Soviet Special Commission 1943 - pyre and dugout.


Of Feigs and Wiesels: A Solution to the Mystery of Elie Wiesel’s Tattoo?

Posted in Auschwitz by littlegreyrabbit on January 26, 2011

One of the constant search terms which attracts transient visitors to this blog are terms relating to Lazar Wiesel, Elie Wiesel and his missing tattoo.

On this blog I have given a brief overview of the facts and documents collected by Auschwitz survivor Niklos Grüner here, but these are essentially available elsewhere on the web.  What I want to do here is propose a possible solution to this mystery.  The reasons for believing Elie Wiesel may have taken the identity of another older Auschwitz survivor, Lazar Wiesel, can be summarised as follows

1. The fact that Auschwitz survivor Niklos Grüner knew Lazar Wiesel and his brother Abraham in Auschwitz and failed to recognise the Nobel Prize Winner on meeting him.  The description of his surprise as he writes it sounds credible

2.  Mr Grüner then went through the Buchenwald archives and uncovered a number of documents that confirmed his memory of an older Lazar and Abraham Wiesel A-7713 and A-7712 respectively

3.  Despite testifying under in court that he possesses a tattoo, A-7713, numerous footages and public photos of a bare-armed Elie Wiesel fails to reveal a tattoo.

To this might be added a fourth reason: there seems to be long-standing suspicion of Elie Wiesel in the Survivor community, to the extent that as far back in the 1980s survivor of the Mengele twins experiment and founder of the Candles museum Eva Kor wrote privately to the Auschwitz museum seeking the registration details of A-7713 and then, years later, privately supplied that information to Mr Grüner by fax.

Mr Grüner believed that his friend Lazar Wiesel wrote Un di Velt Hot Geshvign and this text was changed and adapted by the younger Elie Wiesel and re-released as Nuit.  And although there are some significant differences in text and tone between the two to make this plausible, it also leaves some problems.  The first is why did Lazar Wiesel write his 1954 memoir from the point of view of a teenager not exactly Elie Wiesel’s age but close to it, and why did Lazar Wiesel not object when his work was plagiarised.  As to the first, I have no idea; as to the second, one possibility is that there is familial connection between Lazar Wiesel and Elie Wiesel and permission to use of Lazar Wiesel’s work were freely gifted.

Elie Wiesel is the offspring of two well-established and multi-branched Sighet’s families, the Wiesels and the Feigs.  Survivors of these two families (which I am happy to report seem numerous) have loaded extensive geneaologies on Rootsweb.  A sample output can be seen here. (The database seems to be the responsibility of a one Leslie Gyi, email:  What interests us is the appearance of 3 nameless living Wiesels in this listing – children of Mendel and Golda Wiesel (allegedly Elie Wiesel’s Uncle and Aunt).

Mystery Living Wiesels


Pacholegg, Polygal and Puzzling friendships.

Posted in Experiments, Other Camps, Resistance and Psychological Warfare by littlegreyrabbit on January 17, 2011

Recently my attention was drawn to an overall excellent article regarding Anton Pacholegg, a  rather incredible witness from Dachau, and his testimony regarding human skin leather production at Dachau, which can be read here.  Overall the biographical detail and the subsequent career of Anton Pacholegg makes Dr Joachim Neander’s article fascinating, although I would disagree with some points of interpretation.

Anton Pacholegg was also heavily involved with one of  Dr Sigismund Rascher’s more infamous projects, the development of an anti-coagulant for the pre-surgical treatment of wounded soldiers, Polygal.  The concept being that given this drug would greatly reduce bleeding and thereby improve survival prospects.  Without doubt a worthwhile concept, a typical summary of this aspect of Rascher’s career might be as follows:

Another of Rascher’s major research efforts focused on the introduction of a pectin-based preparation, Polygal, to promte blood clotting.  He predicted that the prophylactic use of Polygal tablets would reduce bleeding from wounds sustained in combat or during surgical procedures.  The agent was also recommended for the control of spontaneous gastrointestinal and pulmonary hemorrhages.  Combat woulds were simulated by the amputation of the viable extremities of camp prisoners without anesthesia or by shooting the prisoners through the neck and chest.

Rascher also claimed that oral premedication with Polygal minimized bleeding during major surgical procedures, rendering hemostatic clips or ligatures unnecessary and shortening operating times.  He published an enthusiastic article about his clinical experiece with Polygal, withou specifying the nature of some of the trial in humans.  The paper concluded. “The tests of this medicine “Polygal 10″ showed no failures under the most varied circumstances.”  Rascher also formed a company to manufacture Polygal and used prisoners to work in the factory. (more…)

The Weaving Mill of Birkenau: Converted to Krema IV and V

Posted in Auschwitz, Essential Postings by littlegreyrabbit on January 15, 2011

Prominent amongst oral testimonies from Birkenau in 1944, particularly of Hungarian Jews, is the role of the Weaving Mill or Weberei of Birkenau in camp employment.  Although the literature tends to be vague as to where the Weberei was actually located, inmates employed there seemed, according to extensive oral testimony, mostly to spend their time producing fuses for armaments out of old rags. Locations suggested in the literature the Weberei range from BIII to the Familienlager Theresienstadt sector BIIb, to BIIc. No Weberei building exists in any of the available lists of building projects for Birkenau (which all mention BW 30, BW 30a, BW 30b, BW 30c – allegedly the codes for the various crematoria). Yet according to the documents of the Frankfurt trial a DAW Weberei opened in March 1943[1].  Coincidently or not, March 1943 more or less the date that Krema IV is supposed to have been finished. From the wealth of oral testimony and camp employment lists we know a Weberei was in Birkenau. My suggestion will be the Weberei was one or both of the building sites we today know as Krema IV and V, that is next to the Effeketen lager – a convenient source of textiles.

Birkenau (Auschwitz II) employment for October 3 1944



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