Newsgroups: alt.revisionism,soc.history Subject: Maidanek: Tortures & Bloody Reprisals (3 of 7) Followup-To: alt.revisionism Organization: The Nizkor Project http://www.nizkor.org Keywords: Lublin,Maidanek ------------------------------------------------------------pg 05-- III. THE TORTURES AND BLOODY REPRISALS PRACTISED IN THE EXTERMINATION CAMP The regime in the "Extermination Camp" served the object of accomplishing tho wholesale extermination of the prisoners. The prisoners dragged out a miserable existence of starvation. The ordinary daily ration of a prisoner consisted of one issue per day of coffee made of roasted turnips, two issues per day of soup made of grass, and from one hundred and eighty to two hundred and seventy grams of bread, half adulterated with sawdust or chestnut flour. This led to the complete exhaustion of the prisoners, to the spread of tuberculosis amd other diseases and the wholesale dying out of the prisoners. For the slightest "offence" the prisoners were deprived of even this meagre food for several days at a stretch, which practically doomed them to death from starvation. Tomasek, a Czech and a former prisoner of the camp, stated before the Commission: "The people starved all the time. The wholesale exhaustion of the prisoners and death from exbaustion were observed. The prisoners ate offal, cats and dogs. Most of the prisoners looked like walking skeletons covered with skin, or were unaturally bloated due to swelling resulting from starvation." Corporal Reznik of the Polish Army and former prisoner of the camp stated: "I noticed that the Russian prisoners of war were hardly fed at all. They were reduced to an extreme state of exhaustion. Their bodies swelled, and they were not even able to talk. They died in large numbers." Starvation was one of the important elements of the general system of extermination that prevailed in the camp. The working day started at 4 a.m. The Germans burst into the barracks aud roused the people with whips. The roll was called, at which all, sound and sick alike, had to be present. Those who had died in the night had to be taken out to the ------------------------------------------------------------pg 06-- barrack square by those who had slept next to them to be checked. The roll-call lasted two hours and more, and was accompanied by the beating and tormenting of the prisoners. If a prisoner swooned and was unable to answer when his name was called, he was registered as dead and killed with clubs. At s a.m. the prisoners were taken out to work. The work was exceptionally heavy and exhausting. It was accompanied by severe beating, torment and murder. The gangs of prisouers returning for their so-called dinner at 11 a.m., carried with them their fellow-prisoners who had been beaten, mutilated or killed. During the evening roll-call the SS men on duty read the names of those prisoners who had worked "badly," and these were tied to a form and flogged with whips, rods or birches. The number of strokes inflicted ranged from twenty five and over. Often, prisoners were flogged to death. Zelent, Docent of the Warsaw University, formerly a prisoner of the camp, stated: "I knew Barrister Nosek, from Radom, who was given one hundred strokes, from which he died three days later." In the case of intellectuals and prominent persons among the prisoners, particularly refined methods of torture were adopted. The Germans compelled Proffesorr Michalowicz, age seventy-two, the famous expert on infantile diseases, Professor Pomirowski, age sixty, of the Warsaw Politechnical Institute, Wazowicz, age seventy-five, a member of the Polish Supreme Court, and many others, to perform the most arduous work, and tormented them in every possible way. Tadeusz Budzyn, M. Sc. Chem., a Pole, and formerly a prisoner at the camp stated: "The Germans compelled a large group of professors, physicians, engineers and other specialists, numbering one thousand two huudred in all, who came from Greece, to carry heavy stones from one place to another, a task which was far beyond their strength. The scientists who dropped from exhaustion as a result of this heavy labour were beaten ------------------------------------------------------------pg 07-- to death by thc SS men. Owing to the system of starvation, exhausting labour, beating and murder, the entire group of Greek scientists was exterminated in the course of five weeks." The methods of torturing and tormenting prisoners varied to an extraordiuary degree. Many of them bore the character of alleged "jokes," which very often ended in the death of the prisoners upon whom they were played. Among these may be cited the mock shooting of a prisoner while simultaneously stunning him by a blow on the head with a plank or other blunt instrument, and the mock drowning of prisoners in the pool at the camp, which often ended in thc actual drowning of the victims. Among the German butchers in the camp some specialized in particular methods of torture and murder. They killed their victims by striking them with a club across the back of the neck, kicking them in the stomach or in the groin, etc, The SS torturers drowned their victims in the filthy water that flowed from the bathhouse into a shallow ditch. The victim's head was forced into this filthy water and kept there with the jackboot of the SS man until he expired. The favourite method of the Hitlerite SS men was to hang their victims by their arms, which were tied behind their backs. Le-du Corantin, a Frenchman, who had suffered this form of punishment, stated that when thus suspended the victim soon lost consciousness. When that happencd the victim was lowered, but was hung up again as soon us he recovered consciousness. This was repeatcd over and over again. For the slightest offence, especially on suspicion of attempting to escape, the German fiends hanged prisoners in the camp. In the middle of every field there was a post with a cross-tree fixed to it about two metres high on which people were hanged. "From my barrack," said the witness Domashev, a Soviet prisoner of war who was confined in this camp, "I saw people hanged on this post in the middle of the field." ------------------------------------------------------------pg 08-- Near the laundry, in the space between fields No. 1 and No. 2, there was a special barrack with beams stretching from one end to another, from which people were hanged in whole groups. Female prisoners in the camp were subjected to no less torment and torture: the same methods of roll-call, exhausting labour, beating and torment. The chief woman overseer Erich, of the SS, and the women overseers Braunstein, Anni Devid, Weber, Knobliek, Ellert and Redli, were distinguished for their cruelty. The commission has established numerous cases of absolutely unprecedented cruelties on the part of the German fiends in the camp. At a plenary session of the Commission, the German Kampfpolizist, Heinz Stalbe stated that he saw the chief of the crematorium, Oberscharfuhrer Munsfeld, tie a Polish womam hand and foot and throw her alive into the furnace. Witnesses Jelinski and Olech, who were employed in the camp, also testified to the burning of people alive in the crematorium furnaces.."A child was torn from a mother's breast and before her eyes was dashed against the wall of the barrack and killed," stated the witness Atrokhov. The witness Edward Baran stated: "I myself saw little children torn away from their mothers and killed before their eyes: the child was held by one leg, the other was kept down by the foot and the child was thus torn in two." The Deputy Chief of the camp, Obersturmfuhrer SS, Tumann, was notorious for his exceptional sadism. He forced groups of prisoners to stand in a row on thier knees and killed them by striking them on the head with a club; he set police dogs on the prisoners; he took a most active part in all the punishments and killing of prisoners. Thus, starvation, exhausting labour, torment, torture and murder, accompanied by unprecedented sadism, were resorted to in the wholesale slaughter of prisoners in this camp.
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