Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

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Arsènelupin
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Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Arsènelupin » 9 years 5 months ago (Mon May 10, 2010 3:43 pm)

There's currently talk, in Auschwitz story, of a revolt rulled by the Sonderkommando of the Krema IV, wich would have tooken place in october 1944, and would have destroyed the Krema and its so called "gaschamber". But on what documentary evidence is grounded this story ? Is it grounded only on "eyewitnesses" 's testimony, like so much events of the camp life ?

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Pappy Yokum » 9 years 4 months ago (Sat May 22, 2010 10:11 pm)

Pressac's big book on the Auschwitz "gas chambers" devotes one paragraph to the October 1944 revolt. He wrote Krema IV was no longer being used as a crematory at the time, but was used to house "Sonderkommando." He relates in the paragraph there are several postwar accounts of the burning of Krema IV, but says he is unable to determine their veracity.
I figured there were documents related to at least the people executed after, but I guess Pressac could not find any. He states the archives of the camp "political section" were destroyed just prior to the camp being evacuated.
What we know is the building was destroyed in October from air photos. Whether there was a revolt or an accidental fire, I can't say I have seen anything but postwar testimony/memoirs about the supposed revolt. These say the building was being used as a gas chamber at the time which is at odds with Pressac's research.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Arsènelupin » 9 years 4 months ago (Sun May 23, 2010 1:21 pm)

Thank you. So, we are not very much informed...
I asked this question, because it was a "track" in order to find something more "consistent" about these mysterious "sonderkommandos".

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hans » 9 years 4 months ago (Mon May 24, 2010 9:10 am)

There are three German documents which corroborate the uprising of members of the Sonderkommando on 7 October 1944.

The first is a labour force report of 9 October 1944, which lists as crematoria personnel 212 prisoners, whereas the number has been 663 on 7 October 1944. Thus, the number of prisoners working at the crematoria was reduced by 451 prisoners between 7 and 9 October. This is confirmed by eyewitness accounts who describe the killing of many members of the Sonderkommando during and in the aftermath of the uprising.

The second is a garrison order of 12 October 1944. It reports that three SS men from Auschwitz died on 7 October fighting the enemy.

The third is an escape report from the police stating that "today a large number of prisoners mostly Jews escaped from the the Sonderkommando (crematorium) of Auschwitz-Birkenau. The prisoners were partly shot during the chase for them. The search operation will continue. Signs: shaved, tatooed number on left forearm, clothing partly civil with a red stripe." It is not clear from the scan posted at the ASM site from which date the report is, other than it is from 1944, but since the Sonderkommando revolt of 7 October 1944 is the only larger uprising of Sonderkommandos it makes sense to place it on this day.

In any case, the document clearly proves that the crematoria personnel in Birkenau was called Sonderkommando. Thus, it refutes an entire chapter in Mattogno's Sonderbehandlung book once for all. And it makes people who put Sonderkommando into sneer quotes and claim the term is an post war invention looking pretty ignorant.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hannover » 9 years 4 months ago (Wed May 26, 2010 5:34 pm)

Hans said:
There are three German documents which corroborate the uprising of members of the Sonderkommando on 7 October 1944.

Hans,
Please show us the originals of these 'documents', not English 'translations'.

- Hannover
If it can't happen as alleged, then it didn't.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby snorkel » 9 years 4 months ago (Wed Jun 09, 2010 7:13 am)

Hans wrote:There are three German documents which corroborate the uprising of members of the Sonderkommando on 7 October 1944.
...
The third is an escape report from the police stating that "today a large number of prisoners mostly Jews escaped from the the Sonderkommando (crematorium) of Auschwitz-Birkenau. The prisoners were partly shot during the chase for them. The search operation will continue. Signs: shaved, tatooed number on left forearm, clothing partly civil with a red stripe." It is not clear from the scan posted at the ASM site from which date the report is, other than it is from 1944, ...


Hans, could you please provide a link to the post you reference. I am unfamiliar with "the ASM site".

I am interested in any documents which contain references to tattooed inmates.

Thank you.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hans » 9 years 4 months ago (Fri Jun 11, 2010 12:19 pm)

Snorkel,

ASM stands for Auschwitz State Museum, you can find the document here:

http://en.auschwitz.org.pl/m/index.php? ... 7&Itemid=3

The part about the tatooes reads "auf dem l. Unterarm eintätowierte No" (number tatooed on the left forearm).

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hans » 9 years 4 months ago (Fri Jun 11, 2010 12:32 pm)

The garrison order is from the volume "Standort- und Kommandanturbefehle des Konzentrationslagers Auschwitz 1940-1945", page 500:


Code: Select all


Standortbefehl Nr. 26/44                          Auschwitz, 12. Oktober 1944




1. In Ausübung ihres Dienstes fielen vor dem Feind getreu ihrem Eid auf den Führer
am Sonnabend, dem 7.10.44

SS-Uscha. Rudolf Erler, geb. 31.8.04 5./SS-T-Stuba.KL Au. I
   "      Willi Freese,  "   30.9.21 2./SS-T-Stuba.KL Au. II
   "      Josef Purke,   "   28.2.03 1./SS-T-Stuba.KL Au. II

Wir werden den gefallenen Kameraden stets ein treues Andenken bewahren.

2. Warnwoche

Die Sicherheit des Reiches im gegenwärtigen entscheidenden Stadium des Krieges
verlangt von jedem SS-Angehörigen und Gehfolgschaftsmitglied unbedingte Gewissen-
haftigkeit und Disziplin bei der Behandlung aller geheimzuhaltenden Vorgänge und
Gegenstände.
Der Erziehung zu dieser Disziplin dient die sogenannte "Pst"-Aktion, die im Rahmen
einer Warnwoche am 16.10.1944 beginnt.

[...]

Während der Warnwoche sind durch die Führer der Einheiten und Diennststellenleiter
laufend Belehrungen über  die Gefahren des leichtsinnigen Schwatzens durchzuführen.
Dabei ist darauf hinzuweisen, daß die Schweigepflicht in erster Linie für die SS-
Angehörigen selbst gilt. Jedem Schwätzer ist in dieser Woche mit dem Warnwort
"Pst" entgegenzutreten. Wenn vom Beginn dieser "Pst"-Aktion zehn Prozent aller
SS-Angehörigen und Gefolgschaftsmitglieder die anderen neunzig Prozent mit dem
Worte "pst" warnen und die Bedeutung dieses Wortes verstanden wird, nämlich
"Achtung, Feind hört mit! Schwatz nicht! Schweige!"
dann hat die Aktion ihre Aufgabe erfüllt.

[...]

                                                                         gez. Höß
                                                 SS-Sturmbannführer und Kommandant
                                                                 


F.d.R.
i.V.[Unterschrift Mulka]
SS-Obersturmführer u. Adjudant

[Verteiler]


The labour force report is quoted and cited in Czech's Kalendarium in the entry for 9 October 1944.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Lohengrin » 9 years 4 months ago (Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:59 pm)

Seems good work Hans, but . . .

1. The 'Gestapo Report' shows 7-09-1944 as date (= 1 month earlier)

2. The typed death report of the SS-men is signed "R. Hoss" as Camp commander. If I am correctly informed, Hoss was in charge until November '43? succeeded by Liebehenschel and in May 1944 by Baer?

3. How come that the typed document shows "S S" in Normal Roman type, and not the usual $$ ? Wasn't Auschwitz an SS-nest or not?

Could it be that Pressac rightly didn't mention these 'documents' because of this kind of shortcomings?

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Lohengrin » 9 years 4 months ago (Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:27 pm)

In addition to my above posting, the "German" document "Standortbefehl" is a clear falsification.

Which German officer (or typist/collationist!) would have published a document signed with ""SS-Obersturmführer u. Adjudant" (= English!) instead of correct German "Adjutant"?!

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby jnovitz » 9 years 4 months ago (Fri Jun 11, 2010 11:39 pm)

I was a little confused what Lohengrin wrote about concerning the wrong date but he was referring to the Gestapo report Hans linked to the Auschwitz Museum site which has the September date (not the report Hans inserted - I simply say this in case others were similarly confused).

As regards Hoess, he handed over command in December 1943 but I understand he came back in May 1944 as sort of an overall commander with Baer in command of the Stammlager and Kramer in command of Birkenau. I am not sure when he left again, or if he did so before the evacuation.
According to this German wiki
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolf_Höss
he was only here from May to July 1944 before resuming his duties with the WVHA - but this is not an extremely robust citation, so I am open to correction here.
According to Krakow Trial indictment
http://www.ess.uwe.ac.uk/WCC/hoess.htm
He seems to have left by September 1944
The accused Rudolf Franz Ferdinand Hoess, a German subject, was charged with the following crimes :

(1) That from 1st September, 1939, till May, 1945, in the German Reich, and from 1st May, 1940, till September, 1944, on the occupied territory of the Polish State he was a member of the German National Socialist Workers’ Party (NSDAP), a criminal organization, which aimed at the subjugation of other nations through planning, organizing and perpetrating crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity, and also was a member of the SS, a further criminal organization ;

(2) That from 1st May, 1940, till the end of October, 1943, as Commandant of the Auschwitz concentration camp set up by him, and thereafter from December, 1943, till May, 1945, as Head of the D.I. Department of the S.S. Central Economic and Administrative Office, as well as in June, July and August, 1944, as commander of the SS garrison at Auschwitz, in execution of the Nazi system of persecution and extermination of nations in concentration and death camps organized for the purpose, he supervised the application of that system in the Auschwitz concentration camp against the Polish and Jewish civilian population and against other nationals of the .territories occupied by Germany, as well as to Soviet prisoners of war, and thereby acting either himself or through the subordinate camp personnel, he deliberately :


I would be surprised if either the Museum or Moscow would have made such a basic mistake - although its possible. Normally the procedure would be to take a genuine Standortbefehl and make a new version containing everything in the old, plus the extra information you want to insert. Its worth pointing out to all those forgery skeptics that Lohengrin's cautious methodology relies on the Museum or Moscow making gross, detectable errors before dismissing a document, errors that a very small amount of care and attention to detail should be able to avoid.

However, according to Wikipedia he was promoted to SS-Obersturmbannführer in July 1942 so the document has the wrong rank.

Incidentally, Dr Miklós Nyiszli gave a detailed account of the Sonderkommando revolt in his book, yet in his earlier testimony to a Hungarian investigative commission he didn't mention it at all.

http://degob.org/index.php?showjk=3632

You can search through these testimonies. I can't at the moment say that no one mentions the revolt, but certainly the vast majority (or all of them? I can't actually recall) don't mention it.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hans » 9 years 4 months ago (Sat Jun 12, 2010 1:09 am)

Lohengrin,

"Adjudant" is my typo and almost certainly I also wrongly transcribed Höß instead of Baer. I will check this when I have access again to the Standort- und Kommandanturbefehle volume. Danuta Czech also cites the Standortbefehl and identifies Baer as author:

Code: Select all

Il comandante del campo di concentramento di Auschwitz, SS-Sturmbannführer Baer, riferisce nell'Ordine della guarnigione
n. 26/44 che sabato 7 ottobre 1944 sono caduti per mano
nemica:

SS-Uscha. Rudolf Erler, nato il 31 agosto 1904, del 5° SS-Sturmbann
del KL Auschwitz I;
SS-Uscha. Willi Freese, nato il 30 settembre 1921, del 2° SS-Sturmbann
del KL Auschwitz II;
SS-Uscha. Josef Purke, nato il 28 febbraio 1903, del 1° SS-Sturmbann
del KL Auschwitz II.

http://www.associazioni.milano.it/aned/ ... 1944_2.pdf

There is no Runen SS because I don't have it on my keyboard. IIRC the orders are written with Runen. But generally it cannot be assumed that any typewriter used by the SS was capable of Runen in particular not in occupied Poland.

It's true that there seems to be as date 7 September 1944 on the police report. On the other hand, the ASM identifies the report refering to the events of 7 October 1944 and I assume they have drawn this conclusion after carefully checking the entry, so it may be that this is a typo of the clerk. One should e-mail the Auschwitz State Museum and ask for clarification. The actual date of the report should be relatively easy be determined by the chronology of the entries.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Arsènelupin » 9 years 4 months ago (Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:21 am)

First I apology for the faulty orthography of my post ("There" for "it", or "tooken" for "taken" etc...)
I specify my question : is there, in these evidences showing that a revolt or any trouble would have happened in september or october 1944, anything wich could hint this revolt, or the Sonderkommando, or the Krema, would have been connected with a gas chamber activity, or at least a homicidal activity ?

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby Hans » 9 years 4 months ago (Sat Jun 12, 2010 11:53 am)

Arsènelupin wrote:First I apology for the faulty orthography of my post ("There" for "it", or "tooken" for "taken" etc...)
I specify my question : is there, in these evidences showing that a revolt or any trouble would have happened in september or october 1944, anything wich could hint this revolt, or the Sonderkommando, or the Krema, would have been connected with a gas chamber activity, or at least a homicidal activity ?

Short answer, no.

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Re: Krema IV, "Sonderkommando revolt"

Postby jnovitz » 9 years 4 months ago (Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:19 pm)

Hans, it is entirely up to you, but would it be possible that you could get a scan of this document when you do check it?

Normally this is not a particular reasonable request, but you have introduced a large element of doubt - you are, after all, quite knowledgeable enough to know the difference between Hoess and Baer.

I also note that you have it as being signed by Mulka, who as I understand it left Auschwitz in 1943. If I understand your notation correctly, this is an actual signature and not typescript - and its uncertain whether it is you who made the identification of Mulka or the editor of the volume. It would be nice to see a scan so everyone could judge.

The document original is from the Moscow archives, if I understand the archival reference number correctly, RGVA, 502-1-25

So we can't assume that Czech didn't correct the error herself in her Kalendarium.


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