The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: camps/auschwitz/gypsies.03

Newsgroups: alt.revisionism,soc.history
Subject: Holocaust Almanac: 15,000 German Gypsies Die at Nazi Hands
Followup-To: alt.revisionism
Organization: The Nizkor Project, Vancouver Island, CANADA
Keywords: gypsy,gypsies,nisko

Archive/File: camps/auschwitz gypsies.03
Last-Modified: 1993/12/12

"Gypsies were officially defined as non-Aryan by the Nuremberg laws of
1935, which also first defined Jews; both groups were forbidden to marry
Germans. Gypsies were later labled as asocials by the 1937 Laws against
Crime, regardless of whether they had been charged with any unlawful acts.
Two hundred Gypsie men were then selected by quota and incarcerated in
Buchenwald concentration camp. By May 1938, SS Reichsfuehrer Himmler
established the Central Office for Fighting the Gypsy Menace, which defined
the question as `a matter of race,' discriminating pure Gypsies from part
Gypsies as Jews were discriminated, and ordering their registration. In
1939, resettlement of Gypsies was put under Eichmann's jurisdiction along
with that of the Jews. Gypsies were forbidden to move freely and were
concentrated in encampments with Germany in 1939, later (1941) transformed
into fenced ghettos, from which they would be seized for transport by the
criminal police (aided by dogs) and dispatched to Auschwitz in February
1943. During May 1940, about 3,100 were sent to Jewish ghettos in the
Government-General: others may have been added to Jewish transports from
Berlin, Vienna, and Prague to Nisko, Poland (the sight of an aborted
reservation to which Jews were deported). These measures were taken against
Gypsies who had no claim to exemption because of having an Aryan spouse or
having been regularly employed for five years.

Some evaded the net at first. Despite a 1937 laws excluding gypsies from
army service, many served in the armed forces until demobilized by special
orders between 1940 and 1942. Gypsy children were also dismissed from
schools beginning in March 1941. Thus, those who were nominally free and
not yet concentrated were stripped systematically of the status of citizens
and segregated. The legal status of Gypsies and Jews, determined
irrevocably by the agreement between Justice Minister Thierack and SS
Reichsfuehrer Himmler on 18 September 1942, removing both groups from the
jurisdiction of any German court, confirmed their fate. Thierack wrote, ` I
envisage transferring all criminal proccedings concerning [these people] to
Himmler. I do this because I realize that the courts can only feebly
contribute to the extermination of these people. 

The Citizenship Law of 1943 omitted any mention of Gypsies since they were
not expected to exist much longer. Himmler decreed the transport of Gypsies
to Auschwitz on 16 December 1942, but he did not authorize their
extermination until 1944. Most died there and in other camps of starvation,
diseases, and toture from abuse as live experimental subjects. By the end
of the war, 15,000 of the 20,000 Gypsies who had been in Germany in 1939
had died."

Excerpted from-------------------------------------------------------
"Accounting for Genocide: Victims - and Survivors - of the Holocaust"
(New York: Free Press, 1979)  Helen Fein

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