Little Grey Rabbit's Historical Skepticism Blog

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…)

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…)

Majdanek: The beast is born…Part II

Posted in Aktion Reinhar(d)(t), Essential Postings, Majdanek by littlegreyrabbit on May 12, 2010

In part one of this series regarding the crematorium/gas chamber of Majdanek, I looked at the liberation photos of the New Crematorium of Majdanek and showed that there were incriminating signs of recent construction and deceit on the part of the Russians.  In part three, at some future date, I intend to look at the various plans of the New Crematorium and in Part IV I will look at the alleged gas chambers and their documentation and demonstrate that these are consistent with nothing more sinister than a normal hygiene and disinfection block. (more…)

Correction Corner: Everybody on Eichmann’s visit to Treblinka, Belzec or anywhere

Posted in Aktion Reinhar(d)(t), Correction Corner by littlegreyrabbit on April 7, 2010

Eichmann, during his custody in Israel, claimed to have visited one of the Aktion Reinhar(d)(t) camps.  A camp he believes was Treblinka.  Historians usually say he visited either Belzec or in the case of Christopher Browning a mystery experimental site somewhere near Belzec.  Either claim involves suppressing information that Eichmann provided, as we shall see. (more…)