Nazi's testimony / Oskar Groening

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Nazi's testimony / Oskar Groening

Postby friedrich braun » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 10:15 am)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/secondwor...1386675,00.html

The Nazi's testimony

Oskar Gröning was at his local philately club when a fellow stamp collector cast doubts on the Holocaust. Gröning knew he was wrong - because 50 years earlier he had served at Auschwitz. Laurence Rees on what happened when the ex-SS soldier decided to finally confront his past

Monday January 10, 2005
The Guardian

After the war, Oskar Gröning took up a hobby. He worked as a manager in a glass factory near Hamburg, but in his own time he became a keen stamp collector. It was at a meeting of his local philately club, in the late 1980s, that Gröning found himself chatting to a man about politics.


"Isn't it terrible," said the man, "that the government says it's illegal to say anything against the killing of millions of Jews in Auschwitz?" He went on to explain to Gröning how it was "inconceivable" for so many bodies to have been burned.

Gröning said nothing to contradict these statements. But the attempt to deny the reality of Auschwitz, the site of the largest mass murder in history, upset him and made him angry. He obtained one of the Holocaust deniers' pamphlets that his fellow stamp collector had recommended, wrote an ironic commentary on it, and posted it to the man from the philately club.

Suddenly, he started to get phone calls from strangers who disputed his view. It turned out that his denunciation of the Holocaust deniers' case had been printed in a neo-Nazi magazine. The calls and letters he received "were all from people who tried to prove that Auschwitz was a huge mistake, a big hallucination, because it hadn't happened". But Gröning knew very well it had happened - for he was posted to Auschwitz in September 1942, as a 22-year-old member of the SS. Almost immediately he witnessed the arrival of Jews at the camp. "I was standing at the ramp," he says, "and my task was to be part of the group supervising the luggage from an incoming transport." He watched while SS doctors first separated men from women and children, and then selected who was fit to work and who would be gassed immediately. "Sick people were lifted on to lorries. Red Cross lorries - they [the SS] always tried to create the impression that people had nothing to fear." Gröning estimates that 80-90% of those on the first transport he witnessed were selected to be murdered at once.



Later, he witnessed the burning of bodies: "This comrade said, 'Come with me, I'll show you.' I was so shocked that I stood at a distance. The fire was flickering up and the kapo [a prisoner in charge of work details] there told me afterwards details of the burning. And it was terribly disgusting - horrendous. He made fun of the fact that when the bodies started burning they obviously developed gases from the lungs and these bodies seemed to jump up, and the sex parts of the men suddenly became erect in a way that he found laughable."

Gröning was upset by the sights he had seen and went to his boss, an SS lieutenant, and put in a request for a transfer to a front-line unit. "He listened to me and said: 'My dear Gröning, what do you want to do against it? We're all in the same boat. We've given an obligation to accept this - not to even think about it.'"

With the words of his superior ringing in his ears, and his transfer request turned down, Gröning returned to work. He had sworn an oath of loyalty; he believed the Jews were Germany's enemy; and he knew that he could manipulate his life at the camp to avoid encountering the worst of the horror. So he stayed.

Gröning then discovered there were "positive" aspects of working at Auschwitz: "I have to say that many who worked there weren't dull, they were intelligent." When he eventually left the camp, he went with some regrets. "I'd left a circle of friends who I'd got familiar with, I'd got fond of, and that was very difficult. Apart from the fact that there are pigs who fulfil their personal drives - there are such people - the special situation at Auschwitz led to friendships which, I still say today, I think back on with joy."

To meet Gröning today, and listen to his attempt to explain his time at Auschwitz, is a strange experience. In appearance, he is indistinguishable from countless other elderly, prosperous Germans. He wears good clothes, eats solid German food and espouses conventional right-of-centre political views. Now in his 80s, he talks almost as if there was another Oskar Gröning who worked at Auschwitz 60 years ago - he can be surprisingly critical of his younger self. The essential, almost frightening, point about him is that he is one of the least exceptional human beings you are ever likely to meet. He is no insane SS monster, but a former bank clerk who happened, because of his own choices and historical circumstance, to find himself working in one of the most infamous places in history.

Gröning joined the Hitler Youth when the Nazis came to power in 1933. He took part in the burning of books written by Jews and "degenerates". He believed he was helping rid Germany of alien cultures. At 17, he began a traineeship as a bank clerk. Just months later war was declared. Gröning wanted to join an "elite" unit of the German army so went to a hotel where the Waffen SS was recruiting and joined up.

After a couple of years of clerical work for the SS, he was posted to Auschwitz. On arrival, Gröning was quizzed by senior officers about his background before the war. "We had to say what we'd been doing, what kind of job, what level of education," he recalls. "I said that I was a bank clerk and that I wanted to work in administration and one of the officers said, 'Oh, I can use someone like that.'"

As Gröning began his task of counting the prisoners' money, he was told that valuables taken from Jews would not be returned. When he asked why, his colleagues replied: "Well, don't you know? That's the way it is here. Jewish transports arrive, and as far as they're not able to work, they're got rid of." Until that moment, Gröning had thought Auschwitz functioned as a "normal" concentration camp.

"It was a shock that you cannot take in at the first moment," he says. But once he had been at Auschwitz for several months, the work, he says, had become "routine". "The propaganda had for us such an effect that you assumed that to exterminate them was basically something that happened in war. And, to that extent, a feeling of sympathy or empathy didn't come up."

Gröning's job was to sort the various currencies taken from the new arrivals and send it to Berlin. In his office, he was insulated from the brutality. The only reminder that different nationalities were coming to the camp was the variety of currencies that crossed Gröning's desk - and the array of alcohol taken from the new arrivals. "When there was a lot of ouzo," he says, "it could only come from Greece - otherwise there was no reason for us to distinguish where they came from. We drank a lot of vodka. We didn't get drunk every day - but it did happen. We'd go to bed drunk, and if someone was too lazy to turn off the light they'd shoot at it - nobody said anything."

In 1944, Gröning's application for a transfer to the front line was finally granted and he joined an SS unit in the Ardennes. He was wounded in fighting before he and his comrades eventually gave themselves up to the British in June 1945. They were handed a questionnaire and Gröning realised that "involvement in the concentration camp of Auschwitz would have a negative response", so he put down that he had worked for the SS economic and administration office in Berlin.

"The victor's always right, and we knew that the things that happened there [in Auschwitz] did not always comply with human rights," he observes, seemingly oblivious to how such understatement might seem grotesque.

Along with his SS comrades, Gröning was imprisoned in a former Nazi concentration camp: "It was not very pleasant - that was revenge against the guilty." But life improved when he was shipped to England in 1946 where, as a forced labourer, he had "a very comfortable life". He went back to Germany in 1948.

Shortly after his return, he was sitting at the dinner table with his parents-in-law and "they made a silly remark about Auschwitz", implying that he was a "potential or real murderer". "I exploded!" says Gröning. "I banged my fist on the table and said, 'This word and this connection are never, ever, to be mentioned again in my presence, otherwise I'll move out!' I was quite loud, and this was respected and it was never mentioned again."

Thus did the Gröning family settle down to its postwar future, enjoying the fruits of the German "economic miracle". Gröning rose through the management at the glass factory, becoming head of personnel. Before retirement, he was appointed an honorary judge of industrial tribunal cases. Even today, he believes that the experience he gained in the SS and Hitler Youth helped his career. "From the age of 12 onwards I learnt about discipline," he says.

When his past was eventually uncovered (he never made any attempt to change his name or hide), the German prosecutors did not press charges against him. This was, in fact, typical. Gröning's experience illustrates how it is possible to have been a member of the SS, worked at Auschwitz, witnessed the extermination process, contributed to the Final Solution, and still not be thought "guilty" by the postwar West German state. Of the 6,500 members of the SS who worked at Auschwitz between 1940 and 1945 and are thought to have survived the war, only about 750 were prosecuted, the vast majority by the Poles.

Throughout his life, Gröning believes he did what he thought was right; it's just that what was "right" then, he says, turns out not to be "right" today. It was not until his philatelic encounter with the Holocaust deniers that he decided to speak openly about his time at the death camp. Once he had retired and knew he would not be prosecuted by the German authorities, he decided he had nothing to lose by confronting his past. Decades after his time at Auschwitz, Gröning finally broke rank.

"I would like you to believe me," he says. "I saw the gas chambers. I saw the crematorium. I saw the open fires. I was on the ramp when the selections took place. I would like you to believe that these atrocities happened, because I was there." · The first programme in the series Auschwitz: the Nazis and the Final Solution, written and produced by Laurence Rees, will be shown on BBC 2 tomorrow at 9pm. The accompanying book, also by Rees, is published by BBC Books at £20. To order a copy for £18.40 with free UK p&p, call the Guardian Book Service on 0870 836 0875, or go to www.guardian.co.uk/bookshop

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Postby Richard Perle » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 10:49 am)

I read about this guy in the paper the other day and I planned to search him out here and see what was said about him. His story is the kind of thing that ruins the revisionist case in the eyes of believers. Is there any way to counter a story like this? Is he simply lying?

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Postby Hannover » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 11:34 am)

The poor old man says nothing that other irrationals haven't said. People believe in witches and UFO abductions too. see:
http://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?t=415

All you need to do is go through his points rather than just accepting them.

some points:
"When there was a lot of ouzo," he says, "it could only come from Greece - otherwise there was no reason for us to distinguish where they came from. We drank a lot of vodka. We didn't get drunk every day - but it did happen. We'd go to bed drunk, and if someone was too lazy to turn off the light they'd shoot at it - nobody said anything."

What an absurdity. I can just see disciplined SS men shooting at lights just so they could rebuild the lighting system the next day.
"Isn't it terrible," said the man, "that the government says it's illegal to say anything against the killing of millions of Jews in Auschwitz?" He went on to explain to Gröning how it was "inconceivable" for so many bodies to have been burned.

Not only 'inconceivable' but scientifically impossible. I wonder if 'imposible' is what was really said in German. Also note the unanwered reply about the illegality of debate on the subject.
Suddenly, he started to get phone calls from strangers who disputed his view. It turned out that his denunciation of the Holocaust deniers' case had been printed in a neo-Nazi magazine. The calls and letters he received "were all from people who tried to prove that Auschwitz was a huge mistake, a big hallucination, because it hadn't happened".

OK, here we go, the old dodge & namecalling trick. And NO ONE says Auschwitz didn't happen, we say the claims about it are impossible & irrational and Revisionist research is irrefutable. Notice we are not shown any letters. The phone calls I seriously doubt. A weak attempt to say he was being harassed.
" He watched while SS doctors first separated men from women and children, and then selected who was fit to work and who would be gassed immediately. "Sick people were lifted on to lorries. Red Cross lorries - they [the SS] always tried to create the impression that people had nothing to fear."

Not impression, but fact. There were hospitals and treatment given to the sick, young, and elderly. Which destroys his 'selection' canard since they were supposedly considered useless for labor. There were many inmates released as well ... oops.
He made fun of the fact that when the bodies started burning they obviously developed gases from the lungs and these bodies seemed to jump up, and the sex parts of the men suddenly became erect in a way that he found laughable."

The only thing laughable here is his fantasy. I didn't realize air from lungs could cause an erection. The poor guy is senile.
To meet Gröning today, and listen to his attempt to explain his time at Auschwitz, is a strange experience. In appearance, he is indistinguishable from countless other elderly, prosperous Germans. He wears good clothes, eats solid German food and espouses conventional right-of-centre political views ...

A shallow attempt at the 'banality of evil' tactic which implies that the average German is potentially evil and no special qualities are required ... therefore, just because the story doesn't make sense we're all supposed to believe it anyway. Yawn.
He took part in the burning of books written by Jews and "degenerates".

Ofcourse today Revisionist books are banned and burned. Undoubtedly the author fears debate.
"I would like you to believe me," he says. "I saw the gas chambers. I saw the crematorium. I saw the open fires. I was on the ramp when the selections took place. I would like you to believe that these atrocities happened, because I was there."

He may have seen the 'selection' of the young, old, & sick out of the labor force for medical treatment & care and thinks they were gassed ... after years of conditioning, propaganda on an old man. He may have seen the morgues which are claimed to have been gas chambers, but Revisionist have shown them to have been just that, morgues. He may have seen crematoriums to control typhus, and the some open air cremations when a crematorium went down, but he never saw any gas chambers and the numbers allegedly cremated to fit the storyline are scientifically impossible. This guy is a classic case of senility and recites what he's been told to recite. AND, being SS and at Auschwitz, if he didn't he would be imprisoned.

And ofcourse there is no forensic/physical evidence to support the story.

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Postby Carto's Cutlass Supreme » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:06 pm)

I didn't read the whole thing, but honestly, I'm supposed to believe that he made a commentary on a pamphlet and the next thing you know he's getting calls and letters because his name and address were printed in a neo-Nazi magazine?" C'mon.

And he's an old man in a stamp collector club? Talk about "mild mannered reporter" or "milktoast." Do you really think you'd meet some whack dude who's going to print your name in a neo-nazi magazine if you disagree with him at a stamp collector club? That wouldn't even happen if you attended 100 Nazi skinhead retreats, let alone a freakin' stamp collector club.

I've told almost no one in person about my revisionist beliefs. 1 person. That is all. And I've never, ever in person had someone tell me they are a denier. Yet there are all these stories of the guy who was a guard or inmate, who never talked about it, until, that is,.... he met a denier! I just posted one such story a month ago. A professor who bumps into the student who disrupts classes with revisionist diatribes! See:
http://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?t=1546
This link has not only the hell of a coincidence of a survivor meeting a denier, but from there can't just be a regular story, there's about 3 amazing things that happened!

What are the chances of that!

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Postby Haldan » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:38 pm)

the bodies started burning they obviously developed gases from the lungs and these bodies seemed to jump up, and the sex parts of the men suddenly became erect in a way that he found laughable.


I stopped reading the rest of this article when I saw that. What kind of sick fantasies is this? Pathetic! That's all I can say. :x

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Postby gasto » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:47 pm)

you just can´t rely on "witnesses" testimonies.....you always get a different story from all of them...
If Human Soap rumour was fake, why can´t all the other absurd claims be too??

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Postby Richard Perle » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:51 pm)

I thought that maybe he was talking about 'Angel Lust', where a man can get an erection as he dies which continues after death. I doubt if a body being burnt would have the same effect.

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Postby Carto's Cutlass Supreme » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:58 pm)

That aspect of the story is right out of a brief part in Michael Moore's fahrenheit 9-11 where the troops are laughing at that. Notice how whenever something new is brought to the public attention such as this, it finds it's way into the next bunch of new holocaust stories?!

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Postby Haldan » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 1:05 pm)

It's like the witchraft trials, none of this proves anything. It does more harm to the stupid story than it does good.

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Postby Haldan » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 1:23 pm)

He took part in the burning of books written by Jews and "degenerates".


In Letter 22 Carlos W. Porter writes this (On the so-called book burnings, which I think is relevant):

"If I understand correctly, the National Socialist book burnings were purely symbolic: ONE copy EACH of several hundred books was burnt publicly. Many of these books could still be bought in bookstores, but were not displayed prominently. The National Socialists were amateurs at book burning, as you should know. “Democratic” Germany burns books by the ton, literally. For example, 14, 000 copies of STRITTIGE FRAGEN ZUR GRUNDLAGEN DER ZEITGESCHICHTE burnt by court order; my own NICHT SCHÜLDIG IN NÜRNBERG ordered burnt, the printing plates, stencils ordered destroyed, etc. even though the book was printed in England. More books are prohibited in Germany today than under Hitler."

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Postby Sailor » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 3:14 pm)

1. The link given at the beginning of the story is a dud, doesn't work.
2. The story and the name "Oskar Gröning" does at this time not appear in any of the German leftwing antifascist publications.
3. For a former SS-man to admit to have participated in the socalled Auschwitz "selections" is in Germany suicide and may bring Gröning no matter of what age a prison term for the rest of his life.
4. I think that the story is made up, that it is a hoax. But there will be people who believe it.

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Postby Haldan » 1 decade 5 years ago (Mon Jan 10, 2005 9:41 pm)

Another link:
http://observer.guardian.co.uk/internat ... 74,00.html

Sailor,

I also thought along those lines, and frankly, I would not be suprised if this turns out to be bogus. It's like one of those stories where you have to feed the flames before they pass out. Maybe this is one of those stories. I don't know.

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Postby Hannover » 1 decade 4 years ago (Thu Apr 14, 2005 12:21 pm)

A little more on this absolute BS from a sad old man who, unfortunately, must say such things to avoid prison.
He watched while SS doctors first separated men from women and children, and then selected who was fit to work and who would be gassed immediately. "Sick people were lifted on to lorries. Red Cross lorries - they [the SS] always tried to create the impression that people had nothing to fear." Gröning estimates that 80-90% of those on the first transport he witnessed were selected to be murdered at once.

Yeah sure. That is why the SS had hospitals for sick Jews. I guess that is why when the Soviets arrived there were thousands upon thousands of Jews of all ages, children and elderly included.

And then, would the SS really allow an Auschwitz cashier (as we know about him from the TV series) to casually stroll about, witnessing allegedly secret operations?

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Postby Richard Perle » 1 decade 4 years ago (Thu Apr 14, 2005 12:39 pm)

Considering the magnitude of the alleged holocaust and how it is continuously promoted, I'm suprised there aren't more Oskar Grönings out there.
200 people confessed to the kidnapping and murder of Charles Lindbergh’s baby; more than 30 people falsely confessed to the murder and mutilation of Elizabeth Short (The 'Black Dahlia'); 6 concentration camp inmates confessed to stealing Himmler's pipe (which turned up in his car).

False voluntary confessions are nothing new and are to be expected.

The above high profile cases are included to illustrate two general points to the reader. First, false confessions can and do occur, and they are not a new phenomenon. In fact, Munsterberg (1908) was the first psychologist to write on the subject nearly a century ago. In his classic book, On the Witness Stand, Munsterberg devotes an entire chapter to untrue confessions. Many of Munsterberg’s observations on false confessions (e.g., “in some instances the confessing persons really believed themselves guilty” [p.146]; “pseudo-confessions may thus arise in men who are distinctly not ill” [p. 150]) are strikingly similar to what modern research has revealed on the subject. Second, false confessions occur in widely publicized types of cases in alarming numbers without any type of influence or pressure from the criminal justice system. When one takes this fact into account and further considers the influence of situational features (e.g., interpersonal pressure) during an interrogation, a better understanding of false confessions is fostered.


See: http://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?t= ... confession

All of the psychological tools for understanding the holocaust are already available, they are just not applied where they should be, just as the laws of science and conventions of evidence are ignored when it comes to this subject. The psychology of the holocaust is something revisionists should focus more attention on.

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Postby Ajax » 1 decade 4 years ago (Thu Apr 14, 2005 6:16 pm)

This story is baloney. Oskar 'Groaning' (named so because that is what this ridiculous story makes me do) is another one of those so-called 'eye-witnesses' to crawl out of the closet for no other reason than it is enough to find anyone who was in the vicinity at that time and get a few words out of them. The other example is Rochus Misch, who I have seen touted in various documentaries as Hitler's telephonist, valet, bodyguard and more - when in reality he probably only saw Hitler when the Fuehrer needed to be let out of the front door to take the dog for a walk.

Groening's story simply cannot be believed, for reasons pretty well outlined already. His meeting a 'denier' at a local stamp club. His article being published in a neo-Nazi magazine. The story of the Jews' genitalia. It is laughable, and one has to wonder how much this guy was paid to recite this rubbish.

During the Auschwitz documentary he stated that he was based at the Auschwitz Stammlager where he did office work laundering money. Yet then he claims that he saw the 'gas chambers'. Illogical, every word of it.
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