The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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"That day the blinding artificial lights were turned off in the courtroom, 
plunging it almost into darkness. In the wavering dim light the witness-box 
was occupied by corpses...

The art of the courageous Soviet documentary film makers (some of whom are no 
longer alive) resurrected these corpses and brought them into the courtroom. 
It was as if they had risen from the grave and were hurling indisputable 
evidence in the defendant's faces. ...

A bluish light flashed in the darkness, a beam of light cut across the 
court-room and the following text appeared on the screen: 'Documentary Film 
Evidence on the Atrocities of the German Fascist Invaders.' A documentary film 
presented by the Chief Prosecutor from the USSR. ... [Transcription
note: Filmed movie takes and stills of several other camps follow]

'Danzig, a room in the Technological Institute, where the methods and 
technology for the industrial utilization of human bodies were elaborated,' 
droned the commentator's voice in the earphones.

We already knew about this. We had seen the exhibits and outputs of this 
factory in court. Yet, it was still dreadful. You felt like closing your eyes 
tightly, jumping up and running out of the courtroom. But you had to pass 
through all the circles of this hell on earth, peer into the very heart of 
nazism and find out absolutely everything that it had brought mankind.

We saw a basement, again full of corpses that were stacked in neat piles like 
raw material in factory warehouses. In fact, this really was raw material 
graded according to the fat content. Severed heads were lying separately in a 
corner. They were waste material, unsuitable for soapmaking, or perhaps nazi 
science had failed to keep pace with the requirements of life and had still 
not found a way of industrially utilizing them. Then we saw dismembered human 
bodies that had been piled into vats to be boiled in an alkaline solution. ..."
(Polevoi, 108-184)

                            Work Cited

Polevoi, Boris. The Final Reckoning: Nuremberg Diaries.
Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1978 (English Edition)

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