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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/b/ball.john/goeth-shooting-01

From: (Michael P. Stein)
Newsgroups: alt.revisionism
Subject: Ball's own photo challenges Ball's claim
Date: 21 Mar 1997 11:30:37 -0500
Organization: Express Access Online Communications, Greenbelt, MD USA
Lines: 146
Message-ID: <5gud3d$>
References: <>
Xref: alt.revisionism:150941

In article <>,   wrote:
>In response to Mr. Stein's posting regarding the Schindler's List
>Plaszow camp on my site at 
>Mr. Stein states Goeth had a 'temporary villa' located on a hill at the
>other end of the camp from the location on my 1996 map, from where he
>shot inmates from his doorstep. His evidence is page 192 of Ken
>Keneally's 1993 book Schindler's List.
>I believe the following evidence shows Goeth had just one residence from
>the summer of 1943 to Sept. 1944, from where he could not have seen or
>shot camp inmates:

    The book states that Goeth's orders giving him command of the Plaszow
camp were dated 12th February 1943 (p. 161), late winter.  Therefore there
is no definite inconsistency.  However, as shown below, Mr. Ball has
unwittingly demonstrated that the shooting _described in the book_ was not
blocked by the hill even from the house he acknowledges was Goeth's.

>1. The map used at Goeth's 1946 trial, and reproduced in the 1946 Polish
>government trial record book, identified Goeth's residence, with no
>mention of a previous 'temporary' villa,  
>2. A summer 1943 photo shows the constructed residence with the hill
>behind it (map # 21), and another 1943 photo shows Goeth on the rear
>balcony (map # 17 and 18).
>3. Air photos show that a hill behind the building blocked the view of
>the inmate's camp, so that Goeth could not have seen any part of the
>inmate's camp from his balcony or doorstep. 

    I thank Mr. Ball for the photos, which prove that the shooting _as
described in the book_ was not over the hill from _either_ house. 

    The location of the temporary villa is described on p. 162 as being
near the administration building, which means it was also near the point
from which the picture of Goeth's later house (or only house, according to
Mr. Ball) was taken.  Note this critical sentence: "The Herr Commandant
might be able to notice the tracks being laid for trolleys which would be
used in hauling stones."  The book does not give enough description here
to know precisely where this track ran. 

    Now let us turn back to p. 192, and review just a few critical

    "He would scan the camp area, the work at the quarry, the prisoners
... Within the first few days of the camp's life he appeared thus at his
FRONT door and shot a prisoner who did not seem to be pushing hard enough
at A CART LOADED WITH LIMESTONE. ... With one blast from the doorstep, the
man was plucked from the group of pushing and pulling captives and hurled
sideways IN THE ROAD. [emphasis mine]"

    Now look at the photo of Goeth's house, #14 on Mr. Ball's map of
Plaszow.  It is taken from #21, which is around the area given for the
temporary villa. In the photo, looking up toward's Goeth's house, you can
see to one side of the ROAD the narrow RAILS described in the book for
those QUARRY TRUCKS - one of which was being pushed by the person Goeth
shot.  From the text on the map, I gather that the shot is of the front of
the house, as the balcony was said to be at the rear.  I sent an email
asking for confirmation of this, but never received an answer. 

    While the front door cannot be seen in the photo, it doesn't look to
me as if it requires much of an angle change to establish a line of sight
between the door and a point on the rails, which seem to approach the
house even more closely as they continue around a curve to the right.  It
looks to me as if the road in front of the photographer slopes down a
little, which suggests that the ground behind him might be higher.  Note
that if the photo _is_ of the rear, then the photo is looking up at the
balcony, and there would be no question about it - a line of sight would
exist to the spot of the photo, which fits the description of where the
shooting took place. 

    Mr. Ball's own evidence challenges his claim, since he did not take
care to read and properly interpret the description of the shooting
contained in the book.  As Ingrid Rimland is fond of saying, that's the
way the cookie crumbles. 

>4. At Goeth's 1946 Polish trial, none of the previous Plaszow detainees
>who testified accused Goeth of shooting inmates from the balcony or
>doorstep of his residence. He was accused of directing inmate executions
>in the large quarry just outside camp, and so it is safe to assume that
>anyone who had seen such terrible murders would have testified about

    It is far from safe to assume that all witnesses were available for
the prosecution.  I point out that even without the chaos of post-WWII
Europe interfering with an attempt to gather all possible evidence, the O. 
J. Simpson prosecution did not find the evidence of the Bruno Magli shoes.
That was found later by the civil trial plaintiffs' lawyers.  So I do not
find Mr. Ball's argument here very compelling. 

>Amon Goeth's 1946 deposition is one of the only trial testimonies by a
>former camp commander which outlines what camp life was actually like.
>After demonstrating that a number of allegations against him would have
>been impossible, Goeth said that physical abuse would have been in
>conflict with the goal of developing a healthy work envionment in the
>camp, and generated unrest and escape attempts. He said that when he did
>once hear that a local warder named Michalski had abused an inmate, he
>had the warder immediately dismissed. Further portions of Goeth's
>testimony are on my site.

    *shrug* One would hardly expect Goeth to admit to murder.  As for
impossibilities, when did Mr. Ball become an expert in the psychology of
dogs in addition to his status as an air photo expert?  As for watching an
execution in "the" quarry from a watchtower, I call Mr. Ball's attention
to his own map, feature #19.  As Mr. Ball's own map acknowledges, this is
a second quarry site, mentioned on p. 162 of Thomas Keneally's book.  I'd
just like to know if Mr. Ball is sure he's thinking of the right quarry.
From his map, there seem to be some watchtowers which would have a view of
the small quarry.

>In conclusion I used 1944 air photos and 1943 ground photos to draw a
>camp map, and thereafter identified Goeth's residence from a 1946 trial
>map. I then recognized from the air photos that a hill behind the house
>blocked the view from the balcony or front steps to the inmate's camp. 

    Except that the shooting was not described in the book as taking place
in the inmates' camp.  According to the book, the target was along the
rail track for quarry carts.  And Mr. Ball's own website photo shows that
such a track was in the guard's section of the camp.  The hill he makes so
much of was not an impediment to a line of sight even from Goeth's
_undisputed_ house to such a target point; from the spot described in the
book for the temporary villa there seems little question that the shot
would be trivial.  Given that the house would only have been used for a
few months at the very start of the camp's existence, I do not find its
lack of mention at the trial to be compelling proof that such a temporary
house never existed. 

>I hope this answers Mr. Stein's questions about the location of
>Commander Goeth's residence. 
>		John  Ball - author: Air Photo Evidence

    It does, though not in the way that Mr. Ball intended.

    Posted/emailed to John Ball, Ingrid Rimland, Ross Vicksell, and Jack
Mike Stein			The above represents the Absolute Truth.
POB 10420			Therefore it cannot possibly be the official
Arlington, VA  22210		position of my employer.

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