Newsgroups: alt.revisionism Subject: Holocaust Almanac: Sobibor & SS Sergeant Fallaster Reply-To: email@example.com Followup-To: alt.revisionism Organization: The Nizkor Project, Vancouver Island, CANADA Keywords: Fallaster,Sobibor Archive/File: holocaust/poland/reinhard/sobibor sobibor.08 Last-modified: 1993/03/24 "To make Sobibor run still more smoothly, the Nazis built a high-powered generator that provided enough light so that they could gas Jews at night, and a small train with dump cars like those used to haul coal in the mines south of Krakow. The train tracks began at the unloading platform in front of the Officers' Compound, stretched into Camp II past the warehouses where the sorted clothes were stored, along the sorting sheds, parallel with the tube leading to Camp III, to the rear of the gas chambers, and then to the mass graves. The miners' train toted suitcases from the boxcars to the sorting sheds, bundles of clothes from the warehouses to the empty cars sitting on the spur inside the camp, wood to Camp III, and corpses from the gas chambers to the burial pits. SS Sergeant Fallaster was in charge of the Jews who laid the tracks, and he built his railroad with blood. Short, squat, homely, and slightly hard of hearing, he whipped his crew to a frenzy so that his train would be ready for the first transports to squeak into the `new' Sobibor. If a Jew wasn't working fast enough, or if he angered Fallaster, the Nazi would beat him with a sledgehammer. Sergeant Fallaster smashed dozens to death that summer. Those who escaped with broken bones were taken to Camp III and shot. Up to late summer, the bodies of the gassed Jews were buried in mass graves two hundred feet long, thirty to forty-five feet wide, and fifteen to twenty feet deep. Covered with lime, the corpses would swell six to ten feet in the sun like mounds of dough. Once the gas from decomposition was released, they would sink back down, and the Jews would cover them with dirt. The Nazis found that burying the corpses caused three major problems. The summer of 1942 was one of the hottest on record, and the stench of the more than fifty thousand Jews rotting in Sobibor was overpowering. Like a pestilence, the smell spread over the sweet-scented pine forest and seemed to penetrate everything, including SS uniforms. Furthermore, the water table at Sobibor, only a few miles from the Bug River, was high. After the snow melted in the spring, the southern tip of the camp just outside the fences turned into a swamp. The Germans were concerned that their drinking water would become contaminated and that typhoid would break out. They were also worried that someone someday might stumble on the mass graves, and Sobibor would no longer be a secret. So the Nazis dragged in a steam shovel and forced the Camp III Jews to dig up and burn all the corpses. The Jews stacked them like sacks of rotten potatoes on train tracks resting on concrete pillars. Then they sloshed the mounds with gasoline or kerosene and set fire to the wood piled underneath. They worked in crews around the clock. By night, the sky was bright with an orange glow. By day, black smoke curled in the windless sky as if the forest of the owls were on fire." (Rashke, 52-53) Work Cited: Rashke, Richard. Escape From Sobibor (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1982).
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