Oh, you're not going to believe this - classic Muehlenkamp. I posted the following on VNN about the insane cremation claims at the alleged "pure extermination centers:"
Elimination of the Corpses - Not Quite Without a Trace
The elimination of victims without a trace is a vital link in the chain of evidence for the Holocaust in general. Elimination without a trace is the prerequisite for an arbitrary number of victims. This is how the numbers of victims alleged for Treblinka come to vary from 700,000 to 3 million - a phenomenon that also appears in other cases. The casual treatment of such high numbers of victims seems questionable from the start, and ought to prompt those concerned with the topic to gather scientifically irrefutable facts so as to prevent the Holocaust from becoming a matter of faith. But smoke and mirrors and eyewitness testimony have been deemed good enough. The technically unrealistic claims regarding the mass murder of human beings are compounded by the utterly unbelievable accounts of the removal of bodies without any trace. Millions of dead cannot simply vanish into thin air. In this context the reader is referred to the case of Katyn, where the 4,500 Polish officers murdered by the Soviets in 1940 were discovered in 1943.
According to eyewitness testimony, Himmler ordered the incineration of bodies in the extermination camp Treblinka to eliminate any evidence of the killings; this order was allegedly given in March 1943. This is said to have involved the exhumation and burning of the bodies that had already been buried. Various eyewitness accounts exist of this procedure in Treblinka, which allegedly went on from about March to August 1943.
Regarding the burning of the corpses, Eliahu Rosenberg has stated:
"After Himmler inspected the camp he ordered the burning of all the bodies lying in the pit [...] For this purpose, two iron rails were placed on the ground parallel to each other, and the bodies that were dug out of the pit with excavators were stacked on top of each other like fire logs. It frequently happened that the corpses, especially those just freshly killed, didn't burn well, and so we had to pour gasoline over them [...] At that time we had only one burning site, and of course that wasn't enough, since we couldn't burn more than a hundred bodies a day. An SS-Oberscharführer, Herbert Floss by name, was brought in from the neighboring camp [...] He set up five or six burning sites and also introduced a new way to layer the bodies [...]"
In his testimony in Jerusalem, at the Demjanjuk trial, he also persisted in his convictions:
"In Treblinka we learned that little children burn better than grown men. All it takes is a match to light them. That's why the Germans, damn them, ordered us to put the children in the pit first."
The witness Szyja Warszawski, who came to Treblinka in July 1942, told of gassings with chlorine and of at least 10,000 victims a day, and stated with respect to cremation:
"[...] Usually the bodies were put into pits 33 ft. deep and wide and many times as long. In January 1943 [...] five to six gratings were set up on the ground. The grates, which consisted of iron rails, were supported by cement posts about two feet above the ground. A grate like that was 33 ft. long and 13 ft. wide. A fire was started underneath. Bodies were layered on the burning grate with an excavator machine. Once the bodies caught fire they would continue burning by themselves. Mass cremation began in late February 1943. The ashes that remained after the burning were thrown back into the pits where the bodies had been dug out earlier. Sweet-peas were sown over top and trees brought over from the forest were planted to camouflage the site [...] For some pits only the top layer of bodies was dug out. The rest of the bodies were covered over with soil, and the site was camouflaged as well [...]."
Without going into detail about the strange and contradictory claims in these statements, we shall add some excerpts from Wassily Grossmann's book Die Hölle von Treblinka, where the cremations are described as follows:
"At first the cremation of the bodies just wouldn't work - the bodies did not catch fire properly [sic!]; it was observed however, that female bodies burned easier. Vast quantities of expensive gasoline and oil were wasted on kindling [sic!] the bodies, but the results were pathetic [...] An expert [...] came from Germany, from the SS. What multitalented experts the Hitler regime gave rise to! [...] A specialist for digging up and burning millions of human corpses was also found.
Under his direction the construction of furnaces began. It was a very special kind, a cross between a pyre and a furnace [...] The excavator dug a boiler trench 820 to 980 ft. long, 65 to about 80 ft. wide and 16 ft. deep. Reinforced concrete pillars sticking about 40 to 50 inches out of the ground were evenly spaced in three rows on the bottom, along the entire length of the trench. These pillars supported steel joists running the entire length of the trench. Across these joists rails were placed 2 to 3 inches apart. In this way the grating of an enormous oven was formed [...] Soon a second and then a third oven of the same size was constructed. Each grating was loaded with 3,500 to 4,000 bodies at a time.
[...] People who participated in the cremation of the bodies recount that the ovens resembled gigantic volcanoes. [...] Dense, black, fat columns of smoke rose heavenward [...] Even twenty to twenty-five miles away, the people saw [...] these flames at night, rising up beyond the treetops of the spruce forests surrounding the camp. The entire area was polluted with the stench of burning human flesh [...] The traces are indelible."
Jankiel Wiernik, who is the only one of the witnesses to claim that he participated directly in the cremation for a longer period of time, writes:
"It turned out that bodies of women burned more easily than those of men. Accordingly, the bodies of women were used for kindling the fires."
Richard Glazar comments succinctly:
"The human body does not burn particularly well, quite the opposite."
Rachel Auerbach has compiled various witness statements and summarized them thus:
"Polish people still talk about the way soap was manufactured from the bodies of Jews.... The discovery of Professor Spanner's soap factory in Langfuhr proved that their suspicions had been well founded. Witnesses tell us that when the corpses were burned on pyres, pans would be placed beneath the racks to catch the fat as it ran off, but this has not been confirmed. But even if the Germans in Treblinka or at any of the other death factories failed to do this, and allowed so many tons of precious fat to go to waste, it could only have been an oversight on their part.
In Treblinka, as in other such places, significant advances were made in the science of annihilation, such as the highly original discovery that the bodies of women burned better than those of men.
'Men won't burn without women.' [...] The bodies of women were used to kindle, or, more accurately put, to build the fires among the piles of corpses [...] Blood, too, was found to be first-class combustion material. [...] Young corpses burn up quicker than old ones. [...] [W]ith the help of gasoline and the bodies of the fatter females, the pile of corpses finally burst into flames."
Yitzhak Arad, trying to sound scientific, reports:
"[T]he corpses... [were] arranged [...] in layers on the roaster to a height of 2 meters. [...] When all was ready, dry wood and branches, which had been laid under the roaster, were ignited. The entire construction, with the bodies, was quickly engulfed in fire [...] and the flames would reach a height of up to 10 meters. [...] [T]he SS men in charge of the cremation became convinced that the corpses burned well enough without extra fuel. Yechiel Reichman, a member of the 'burning group', writes: 'The SS 'expert' on bodyburning ordered us to put women, particularly fat women, on the first layer of the grill, face down. The second layer could consist of whatever was brought - men, women, or children - and so on, layer on top of layer [....]'
These [fresh] bodies did not burn as well as those removed from the ditches [i.e., the graves] and had to be sprayed with fuel before they would burn."
But something does seem to have struck one of our Holocausters as odd. Jean-François Steiner vividly describes the problem resulting from the actual, enormous wood (fuel) requirements involved in cremation:
"The prime costs proved to be prohibitive: aside from the vast quantities of gasoline, just as many logs were needed as there were bodies. It was not a viable undertaking, for even if all the forests of Poland might still have been felled as a last resort, the gasoline supply would nevertheless run short. Stalingrad had fallen, and with that, the rich petroleum fields of the Caucasus had shimmered away into nothingness like a mirage."
But J.-F. Steiner, who also compiled many eyewitness statements, manages to find a way out of this predicament; he too came across the bodies that burn of their own accord:
"There were fire-resistant [bodies] as well as such that caught fire easily. The trick was to use the good ones to burn the bad. According to his [Herbert Floss's] research - which evidently had been far advanced - old bodies burned better than new ones, fat ones better than skinny ones, women better than men, and children not as well as women but better than men. From this it followed that old corpses of fat women were the ideal kind."
Some witness statements do in fact indicate that there were units in the camp whose task it was to supply firewood. While Abraham Krzepicki and Samuel Willenberg can only tell of a unit that tore branches off trees in order to decorate the fence surrounding the extermination camp with them, for camouflage purposes, Y. Arad reports that a "wood commando" which initially had to provide only the wood required for construction and firewood later also had to procure the wood needed for cremation. However, there is a consensus among the witnesses and Holocaust believers that the wood was only lit as a sort of camp fire underneath the mountains of corpses, until these had caught fire and burned on their own. R. Glazar is the only one to be able to provide details of this "wood commando": it consisted of 25 men, whose efforts yielded so few twigs and branches that a "camouflage commando" of 25 men had to climb unfelled trees in order to break off additional branches, which were woven into the camp fences to keep outsiders from looking in. Apparently, the "wood commando" did not fell many trees.
Incidentally, Steven Spielberg has shown himself quick to learn from the aforementioned 'witnesses': in one scene of his movie Schindler's List he shows a gigantic conveyor belt continually heaping bodies onto an enormous pile of corpses magically burning on by themselves.
Even though they are contradictory, the many eyewitness accounts do offer numerous details of the extermination activities in Treblinka II; on the other hand, the issue of the fuel necessary for the elimination of the bodies - that is, for their incineration - is ignored, glossed over, or dismissed with unacceptable claims. This consistent approach suggests that the issue, not being resolvable, is repressed either consciously or unconsciously. Szyja Warszawski came up with what is no doubt the easiest solution to the fuel problem when he declared:
"[...] Once the bodies caught fire they would continue burning by themselves",
and Grossmann also took a turn in this direction when he stated:
"[...] the bodies did not catch fire properly",
"[...] kindling the bodies".
The witnesses appear to agree on the opinion that female corpses burn by themselves particularly well, and can thus serve to ignite and burn other corpses. These claims imply that mere kindling suffices to set corpses on fire.
However, this easy way out does not suffice to truly solve the problem of the cremation of corpses, for the worldwide presence and use of oil-, natural gas- or coal-fired crematoria refutes it conclusively, as do all the laws of nature. Some 65% of the human body is unburnable water.
When a major earthquake struck India in September 1993, claiming some 20,000 lives, it was feared that epidemics would break out if the fuel (wood) needed for the cremation of the bodies could not be procured in time. In India, where the cremation of bodies has been the rule rather than the exception for a long time, self-burning corpses have yet to be discovered, even though the country suffers from fuel shortage in this context.
Psychologists ought to investigate the patently false witness claims, since there is no scientific or literary precedent for any similar event, which might have found its way into the witnesses' subconscious mind in the form of a literary experience.
Pure, unadulterated insanity.