Holocaust by Electrocution

 

birmingham-daily-post-monday-21-december-1942-elec

Birmingham Daily Post-Monday 21 December 1942

Here is another example of the Holocaust by “Electrocution” story.

Text reads:

Mass Electrocution

In the meantime, special Extermination Commando had been organised and trained in murder beforehand in Germany, The methods employed in deporting from the ghetto all who survive the murders and shootings in the streets exceed imagination. In particular, children, old people and those too weak for work are murdered. News is available that places of execution have been organised where those who survive the shootings are murdered en masse by means of electrocution and lethal gas. No fewer than 85,000 of the 86,000 Jews who were living in Jugoslavia when that country was attacked have been slaughtered, and the remaining thousand are interned. The Jews of Croatia have been annihilated by a special section of the Fascist Guards, which ceased to function on June 15 last year, having completed its task. In Serbia, the Jews were dealt with by a special section of the Gestapo. In February-this year, this organisation carried out its last task by exterminating by lethal gas the few score remaining Jewish women and children kept in a camp. Actual extermination of the Jews in Belgium was not decided upon until May last, and deportation began in July, when convoys were sent to unknown destinations, probably Silesia. According to a German newspaper, 25,000 of the 52,000 Jews living in Belgium in 1941 had been accounted for in this way up to the end of November, 1942. The statistics are German. Up to the end of October, more than 72,000 Jews left Bohemia and Moravia and 65,000 left Slovakia for the Polish ghettoes—men. women and children being treated alike. A commission was set up at the Slovak Ministry of the Interior on November 10 to consider the final solution of the Jewish problem—the deportation of the remaining 20,000.

I wonder how the Germans responded to these accusations of mass murder as I assume they would have access and knowledge to foreign media reports?

I’ve searched the https://www.ushmm.org and most references seem to be linked to electrically charged wire fences.

elect

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11 thoughts on “Holocaust by Electrocution

  1. I’m curious, why do you feel all of this talk of “steam” and “electricity” important? It’s sort of a sidebar, like soap and lampshades.

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      1. This is not very specific.

        Did the Poles generate this particular propaganda? Did the British or Soviets generate this propaganda

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  2. If you want to know, the earliest information about the Reinhard Camps came from Jews escaping the camps and passing the information along to the Polish Underground. The Polish Underground also investigated for themselves the camps and interviewed nearby Polish villagers and railway employees (many of them members of the Polish Underground). The Poles then passed this information along to the Polish Government in London, who then passed this information along to the British.

    As for electricity or steam, I believe this information was based on erroneous information passed along by either Jewish escapees or Polish villagers who misunderstood what they saw. However, even your newspaper article from 1942 mentions gas along with steam.
    The reality is, none of that makes any difference. What everyone from that point acknowledges is that large numbers of Jews were deported into these camps, that none left, food deliveries were insufficient to cover the amount of people sent to the camps and that the trains returned empty or filled with clothes and other items taken from the Jews.

    As for what I think about soap, the reality is that small amounts were made from corpses but that the bodies this was extracted from were probably Polish or Soviet Prisoners. The Polish and Soviet authorities that looked into the matter dropped it because they concluded no real crime was committed. They believed that the test subjects were already dead.
    In other words, it’s irrelevant.
    As for lampshades, I know some items were presented as evidence but later tests concluded they were goatskin. I’ve read some articles that indicate some human skin items were made but, the reality is that this does not figure in the extermination of the Jews. If true it is evidence of sadism but not genocide.

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    1. Thank you for your extensive reply. I’m sorry but the soap story just doesn’t wash. Isn’t it just a later variation on the “German Corpse Factory” myth from the First World War, where bodies of their own dead and Allied dead were rendered down for fats.
      I presume you’re referring to the Bund report for the early stories in 42. It appears to me that the Polish government in exile would have it in their interest to promote any kind of bad publicity on the enemy. I don’t doubt for a moment that all people in those camps had a dreadful time.
      What is interesting is how these stories were pushed even in the Nuremburg trials and on well after the war.
      In regards to the steam reports couldn’t it equally have been erroneous information about perfectly innocent but very hot disinfection showers perhaps at places like Majdanek.

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      1. “Thank you for your extensive reply. I’m sorry but the soap story just doesn’t wash. Isn’t it just a later variation on the “German Corpse Factory” myth from the First World War, where bodies of their own dead and Allied dead were rendered down for fats.”

        Have you done any research on the subject?

        “I presume you’re referring to the Bund report for the early stories in 42. It appears to me that the Polish government in exile would have it in their interest to promote any kind of bad publicity on the enemy.”

        The Bund Report was extensive and rather detailed.
        Why would the Poles focus on Jews?

        Also, none of this addresses what happened to those Jews sent to the camps. They were too small to handle the amount of Jews “transited” to them in 1942. The information about deportations is confirmed by the German document The Korherr Report and the intercepted Hoefle Telegram. Himmler ordered the ghettos in the General Government emptied except for workers and their families in July of 1942 to be completed by December 31st, 1942. Granted, not all of them were but we are talking about 1.2 million people by the end of December. Where did these people go?

        ” I don’t doubt for a moment that all people in those camps had a dreadful time.
        What is interesting is how these stories were pushed even in the Nuremburg trials and on well after the war.”

        Trials introduce a lot of information, some of it relevant, some not.

        “In regards to the steam reports couldn’t it equally have been erroneous information about perfectly innocent but very hot disinfection showers perhaps at places like Majdanek.”

        How? Where are the water sources to handle that amount of prisoners? You also need the infrastructure at the camps to handle it, the Reinhard Camps were small camps. I’ve never seen anything to indicate vast bathing or steaming facilities.

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