The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/american/oregon/banished.cpu/question.11

Newsgroups: alt.revisionism,talk.politics.misc
Subject: GANNON: Question 11 (v. 1.0: Round 7)
Summary: Gannon is asked to provide specifics with regard to the euphemisms
         employed by the Nazis to obscure their extermination of victims
Followup-To: alt.revisionism
Distribution: world
Organization: The Old Frog's Almanac
Lines: 293

First-Publication Date: 1994/03/30
Archive/File: orgs/american/oregon/banished.cpu question.11
Last-Modified: 1994/03/21

[Followups directed to alt.revisionism] 
In article <>, in twelve flavours, and
subsequent articles, Dan Gannon responds to ten questions by, for
the most part, avoiding them entirely.

In his answers to question one, which asks about the description of
Zyklon-B as material for the "resettlement" and "special treatment" of
Jews, and question seven, which asks about the meaning of "special
treatment" and "special action," Mr. Gannon invokes the age-old denier
arguments about these words.  We find it best to consolidate the
discussion to a new question, which we now ask a sixth time, to wit:

Question 11

 Do you claim that the code words "special treatment," "resettlement,"
 and so on were _never_ used to camoflage Nazi intentions of mass murder?
 If so, please examine the evidence which we present, and refute it on a
 point-by-point basis.

We think it's clear that Mr. Gannon _does_ claim this, though he hasn't
yet been able to specifically answer this question.  He writes, in his
answer to question 1:

       "Special treatment" ("Sonderbehandlung") was not a "code
       word" and did not automatically mean "killing".  It
       meant a whole range of things...

Mr. Gannon then cites volumes of information from various deniers, who
have catalogued many obscure cases in which the code words meant something
very different than what they normally do.  With this tactic, Mr. Gannon
seeks to confuse his audience, instead of addressing the issue.  But we
are not interested in such special cases, because they are irrelevant.
They have no impact on the chief meaning of the code words, which we
document below.


What we would like is for Mr. Gannon to address the cases in which
"special treatment" and the other euphemisms were used with reference to
the Nazi extermination effort.  So that he may address each point, we
enumerate them here:

 1. "Special treatment was killing, everyone knew that," says Eichmann.
 2. To save lives, Kaltenbrunner directs that "special treatment is to be
    limited to a minimum."
 3. Special treatment is "elimination," writes Heydrich.
 4. A memo at the Reich Security Main Office explains "special treatment"
    by the annotation "execution."
 5. Special treatment should be carried out by hanging, says Himmler.
 6. A report from the Russian front equates special treatment with
 7. "No meaning other than killing," says former SS-Gruppenfu"rher Mazuw.
 8. "Everyone knew what it meant," says former SS-Obersturmfu"hrer Hamann.
 9. A letter from Himmler to Korherr asks that the term "special
    treatment" not be used, as the meaning is too well known
10. An SS-Hauptsturmfu"hrer requests more gas vans for Jews to be
    "treated in a special way."
11. A Gestapo memorandum requests that people "subject to special treatment"
    be cremated.
12. The Adjutant at Auschwitz admits that "material for resettlement 
    of the Jews" meant Zyklon-B.

	Sonderbehandlung - literally "special treatment."  This is
     	                   probably encountered most often.

	Umsiedlung       - literally "resettlement."

	Sonderaktion     - literally "special action."

	Evakuierung      - literally "evacuation."

        and, of course,

	die Endlo"sung der Judenfrage - literally "the final solution
		                        to the Jewish question."

In his response to question 1, Mr. Gannon offers Kaltenbrunner's
comments about French diplomats as his reponse to the "special
treatment" of European Jews -- the mind boggles at this logical leap.
He then expects us to swallow Faurisson's assertion that the Nazis'
"special treatment" was to help keep the Jews _alive_.  This is,
obviously, contrary to the facts:

       Starvation was a permanent guest at Auschwitz.  The diet fed to
       I.G.  Auschwitz inmates, which included the famous 'Buna Soup' -
       a nutritional aid not available to other prisoners - resulted in
       an average weight loss for each individual of about six and a
       half to nine pounds a week.  At the end of a month, the change
       in the prisoner's appearance was marked; at the end of two
       months, the inmates were not recognizable except as caricatures
       formed of skin, bones, and practically no flesh; after three
       months, they were either dead or so unfit for work that they
       were marked for release to the gas chambers at Birkenau.  Two
       physicians who studied the effect of the I.G.  diet on the
       inmates noticed that 'the normally nourished prisoner at Buna
       could make up the deficiency by his own body for a period of
       three months....The prisoners were condemned to burn up their
       own body weight while working and, providing no infections
       occurred, finally died of exhaustion.' (Borkin, 125)
Is that your idea of behavior aimed at "keeping the Jews alive?"
Perhaps, rather than quoting Faurisson in your vain attempt to
obfuscate, you should consider Adolf Eichmann's comments...  unless,
of course, you are going to claim that Eichmann doesn't qualify as an
"expert" in "special handling," while Dr. Faurisson does?
During his interrogation by the Israelis, the following question was
    What does "special treatment" mean, and who was subjected to it?
Eichmann's response is at variance with Faurisson's, which comes as no
surprise...  it is interesting to note here Faurisson's employment of
the "if it sheds doubt on my thesis, I will ignore it" technique of
Holocaust denial is telling...  Consider Eichmann's answer:

    Special treatment was killing. Who thought up the term - I
    don't know. Must have been Himmler, who else could it have been - but
    then, I have no proof, maybe Heydrich thought it up after Go"ring gave
    him his authorization. But I really don't know. I'm just trying to
    puzzle it out.
"Special treatment was killing." (What part of that do you not
understand, Dan?) ...his interrogator replied:
    But you knew special treatment meant killing?
Eichmann's response:
    Everybody knew that, yes, Herr Hauptmann, everybody knew.  When a
    shipment was marked "for special treatment," they decided at the
    point of arrival who was fit for labor and who wasn't.
"Everyone knew that," Gannon, except, apparently, you and Dr. Faurisson!
(Kaltenbrunner certainly knew it, too, hence his calculated and cynical
attempt to equate it with resorts, untouchable French diplomats, and
There is an interesting correlation between the use of "special
treatment" by the Nazis, and the similar employment of the words
"special healing procedure" (Besonderes Heilverfahren) as they related
to the shipment of disabled and mentally ill children to Grafeneck and
similar Nazi installation.  Only a Nazi could use such a term to
describe the deliberate murder of thousands of children!  (See Conot,
pages 204 to 207, for a detailed summary of the term, and the horrible
reality of its meaning.)
Let's get back to Mr. Kaltenbrunner, shall we? Since you quote some of
his Nuremberg testimony, it is apparent that you consider him a valid
source of information on this subject. That's encouraging, in light of
the following:

    During the first two and one-half years of the occupation, the
    security police in the government-general shot seventeen thousand
    Poles, a figure that led Frank to comment: `We must not be
    squeamish when we learn that a total of seventeen thousand people
    have been shot; these persons who were shot were nothing more than
    war victims.'(NCA, 2233 AA PS, Frank Journal, Jan.  25, 1943) In
    1943, executions in Poland and Russia accelerated, even though
    Kaltenbrunner directed that, `as a rule, no more children will be
    shot [and] special treatment is to be limited to a minimum.' So
    that this order would not be misunderstood, he explained that `if
    we limit our harsh measures for the time being, that is only done
    [because] the most important thing is the recruiting of workers.
    (NCA, 3012 PS, To All Group Leaders of the Security Service-SD,
    Mar. 19, 1943, cited in Conot, 276-278)
Let's take a look at the witness Kaltenbrunner, in light of your
assertion that "special treatment" equated with champagne and bon bons,
and Faurisson's silliness about keeping the Jews alive..
Kaltenbrunner wanted to keep Poles alive so they can be employed as
slave labour. In order to affect this end, he orders that "special
treatment is to be limited to a minimum." Isn't it ironic
that Kaltenbrunner would order "special treatment," Faurisson's
"keeping the Jews alive," to be "limited to a minimum" in order to
keep these folks alive?
What's wrong with this picture, Dan? 

On September 20th, 1939, SS-Gruppenfuehrer Heydrich sent a telegram to
Gestapo regional and subregional headquarters on the "basic principles
of internal security during the war."  You can find this in Nuernberg
document 1944-PS.  Paragraph four of the telegram reads: 

   To avoid any misunderstandings, please take note of the following:
   ...a distinction must be made between those who may be dealt with in
   the usual way and those who must be given special treatment.  The
   latter case covers subjects who, due to their most objectionable
   nature, their dangerousness, or their ability to serve as tools of
   propaganda for the enemy, are suitable for elimination, without
   respect for persons, by merciless treatment (namely, by execution).
   (Kogon, 6)

On September 26th, 1939, a memo at a staff meeting held at the Reich
Security Main Office indicates which sections were to be responsible for
handling the "special treatments."  Next to the words "special
treatment" are written, in parentheses, "execution."  This is Nuernberg
document 905-PS. (Ibid.)  

Paragraph A, section III of a memorandum from Heinrich Himmler, dated
February 20th, 1942, states:  "Special treatment is carried out by
hanging."  This is Nuernberg document 3040-PS.  (Ibid.)

>From "USSR Operational Report No. 124," dated October 25th, 1941, page 6:
"Due to the grave danger of epidemic, the complete liquidation of Jews
from the ghetto in Vitebsk was begun on October 8th, 1941.  The number
of Jews to whom special treatment is to be applied is around 3,000."
The original is in the Federal Archives, ref. R 58/218.  The
meaning of "special treatment" is clearly spelled out in many such
reports from the eastern front. (Ibid.)

In a hearing on November 9th, 1962, former SS-Gruppenfu"rher Emil
Mazuw stated: "During the war, the SS gave no meaning to
Sonderbehandlung other than killing.  I am certain that high-ranking
officers knew it.  I don't know whether the ordinary SS man did or
not.  According to the terminology used at the time, I understand
'special treatment' to mean only killing and nothing else." [GStA
Frankfurt a/Main AZ: Jz 18/61, hearing of 9 Nov.  1962.]

In a hearing on May 4th, 1960, former SS-Obersturmfu"hrer Heinrich
Hamann stated: "Perhaps an explanation by the commander of the
Security Police in Cracow was required as to the meaning of 'special
treatment.' That's possible.  But so far as I was concerned, I needed
no explanation.  I knew this expression well from the time when I was
assigned to the Reich Security Main Office in Berlin.  In prominent
cases, Himmler would write 'special treatment' in green in the margins
of the daily reports.  That meant 'to be liquidated.' I didn't have to
explain the meaning of this term to my subordinates at Neu-Sandez
either.  Everyone knew what it meant." [StA Bochum AZ: 16Js 84/60,
hearing of 4 May 1960.] (Ibid., 7) 

In fact, Mr.  Gannon, during the war the term "special treatment" was
so _commonly_ known as a euphemism for killing that Himmler decided to
replace it with "processed" (durchgeschleust).  To that end, a member
of Himmler's staff, one SS-Obersturmbannfu"hrer Dr.  Brandt, wrote to
Richard Korherr, the inspector of statistics on "the final solution of
the European Jewish question," on April 10th, 1943, saying: 

   The Reichsfu"hrer-SS [Himmler] has received your statistical
   report....  He wishes that absolutely no mention should be made
   anywhere of "special treatment for Jews." 

   Page 9 should therefore read as follows: "Transportation of Jews
   from the eastern provinces to the Russian East: "Processed
   [durchgeschleust] through camps in the General Government...
   through camps in the Warthegau..." No other formulation is to be

The original letter is in the Federal Archives, ref. NS 19(neu) 1570.
(Ibid., 7-8)

Please enlighten us, Mr.  Gannon, as to what sort of special treatment
the Jews were getting, that was so dangerous that Himmler wanted to
even change the _euphemism_ used to describe it.  "Taking French
lessons?" "Lessons in drinking champagne?"  That would mean, then, that
the camps through which the Jews were "processed," under the new
euphemism, were not extermination camps at all, but really schools of
language and oenology, right?  It seems a little strange for the
Nazis to take away Jews' property, forbid them associations with
non-Jews, destroy their shops, force them to wear yellow stars, herd
them onto trains, carry them into Poland, often in the dead of winter,
and deposit them into concentration camps where even you admit that
typhoid and starvation killed hundreds of thousands...just so that all
the Jews would be better educated with respect to foreign cultures and
alcoholic beverages.

Seems a little silly, doesn't it?

In a letter from SS-Hauptsturmfuehrer Truehe to the Reich security 
office, room 2D3A, Truehe requests additional gas vans:

     "A transport of Jews, which has to be treated in a special way,
     arrives weekly at the office of the commandant of the Security
     Police and the Security Service of white Ruthenia.  The three
     S-vans which are there are not sufficient for that purpose.  I
     request assignment of another S-van (five tons).  At the same
     time I request the shipment of twenty gas hoses for the three
     S-vans on hand since the ones on hand are leaky already." (Nazi,
     Vol. I, 1001)

Did Truehe need the additional gas vans to transport the champagne, Mr. 
Gannon? Or perhaps to take the Jews to summer camp?

In a Memorandum of Gestapo Headquarters, 15 June 1944, the following text

      In amending my directive of June 20 1944, I request that
      those people subject to special treatment be sent to a
      crematorium to be cremated if possible." (TWC, Vol. IV,

One might ask you, Mr. Gannon, why, after providing their victims of  
"special treatment" with gallon upon gallon of champagne, and teaching them
to speak proper French, the Gestapo would insist upon their cremation? Do
enlighten us!

To Judge Hofmeyer, who presided the "Auschwitz trial" in Frankfurt, 
it was obvious what such documents meant. Here is a relevant excerpt
from the court proceedings: 

     "Judge Hofmeyer asks Mulka whether he had issued an order
     for a trip to Dessau (the poison gas Zyklon-B was
     manufactured in Dessau).  

     Mulka: 'I know of only one instance in which I issued a
     travel order for picking up disinfectants from Dessau.' 

     Judge Hofmeyer, leafing through his papers: 'But I seem to
     have more than one here.  Is that your signature?  You can
     look at them.'  

     Mulka walks up to the bench.  

     'What does this mean on this travel order, 'material for
     resettlement of Jews'?'

     'What did you take this to mean?' Mulka, after an embarrassed
     pause: 'Well, Zyklon-B.'  

     Judge: 'You see, until now you have maintained that you had
     nothing to do with the gassings.  But it isn't so.  You
     signed a number of things here.'"  (Naumann, 242)

Your argument, Mr. Gannon, is equivalent to claiming that an SS
officer who told his soldiers to "take the Jews out and kill them" is
innocent of murderous intent, because, a month before, he told those
same soldiers, who were preparing for a soccer game, to "go out there
and kill them."

_Context_, Mr. Gannon, is everything.

                              Work Cited
    Borkin, Joseph. The Crime and Punishment of I.G. Farben. New York: 
    The Free Press, 1978, and London: Macmillan Publishing Company. 
    Conot, Robert E. Justice at Nuremberg. New York: Harper & Row,

    Kogon, Eugen, Hermann Langbein, and Adalbert Ru"ckerl.  Nazi
    Mass Murder:  A Documentary History of the Use of Poison Gas.
    New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1993.

    Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression - Washington, D.C.: U.S Government
    Printing Office, 1946

    TWC: Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals -
    Washington, D.C. U.S Government Printing Office, 1949-1953

	Danny Keren
	Ken McVay
	Jamie McCarthy

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