The Holocaust Historiography Project

Chapter VII — SOME CONCENTRATION CAMP MEMOIRS

The most influential agency in the propagation of the extermination legend has been the paperback book and magazine industry, and it is through their sensational publications, produced for commercial gain that the average person is made acquainted with a myth of an entirely political character and purpose. The heyday of these hate-Germany books was in the 1950’s, when virulent Germanophobia found a ready market, but the industry continues to flourish. The industry’s products consist generally of so called “memoirs” and these fall into two basic categories: those which are supposedly by former S.S. men, camp commandants and the like, and those bloodcurdling reminiscences allegedly by former concentration camp inmates.

COMMUNIST ORIGINS

Of the first kind, the most outstanding example is Commandant of Auschwitz by Rudolf Hoess (London, 1959), which was originally published in the Polish language as Wspomnienia by the Communist Government. Hoess, a young man who took over at Auschwitz in 1940, was first arrested by the British and detained at Flensburg. After his Nuremberg testimony he was handed over to the Polish Communist authorities who condemned him to death in 1947 and executed him almost immediately. The so- called Hoess memoirs are undoubtedly a forgery produced under Communist auspices, as we shall demonstrate, though the Communists themselves claim that Hoess was “ordered to write the story of his life” and a hand-written original supposedly exists at the Auschwitz Museum, but no one has ever forensically examined it.

Hoess was subjected to torture and brain-washing techniques by the British during the period of his arrest and his testimony at Nuremberg was delivered in a mindless monotone as he stared blankly into space. Even Reitlinger regards this testimony as hopelessly untrustworthy.

It is indeed remarkable how much of the “evidence” regarding the Six Million stems from Communist sources; this includes the major documents such as the Wisliceny statement and the Hoess “memoirs” which are undoubtedly the two most quoted items in extermination literature, as well as all the information on the so-called “death camps” such as Auschwitz. This information comes from the Jewish Historical Commission of Poland; the Central Commission for the Investigation of War Crimes, Warsaw; and the Russian State War Crimes Commission, Moscow.

Reitlinger acknowledges that the Hoess testimony at Nuremberg was a catalogue of wild exaggerations, such as that Auschwitz was disposing of 16,000 people a day, which would mean a total at the end of the war of over 13 million. Instead of exposing such estimates for the Soviet inspired frauds they obviously are, Reitlinger and others prefer to think that such ridiculous exaggerations were due to “pride” in doing a professional job. Ironically, this is completely irreconcilable with the supposedly authentic Hoess memoirs, which make a clever attempt at plausibility by suggesting the opposite picture of distaste for the job. Hoess is supposed to have “confessed” to a total of 3 million people exterminated at Auschwitz, though at his own trial in Warsaw the prosecution reduced the number to 1,135,000. However, we have already noted that the Soviet Government announced an official figure of 4 million after their “investigation” of the camp in 1945. This kind of casual juggling with millions of people does not appear to worry the writers of extermination literature.

A review of the Hoess “memoirs” in all their horrid detail would be tedious. We may confine ourselves to those aspects of the extermination legend which are designed with the obvious purpose of forestalling any proof of its falsity. Such, for example, is the manner in which the alleged extermination of Jews is described. This was supposed to have been carried out by a “special detachment” of Jewish prisoners. They took charge of the newly arrived contingents at the camp, led them into the enormous “gas chambers” and disposed of the bodies afterwards. The S.S. therefore did very little, so that most of the S.S. personnel at the camp could be left in complete ignorance of the “extermination programme.” Of course, no reliable witness has ever been found who claimed to have been a member of this gruesome “special detachment” so that the whole issue is left conveniently unproved.

Conclusive evidence that the Hoess memoirs are a forgery lies in an incredible slip by the Communist editors. Hoess is supposed to say that the Jehovah’s Witnesses at Auschwitz approved of murdering the jews because the Jews were the enemies of Christ. It is well known that in Soviet Russia today and in all her satellite countries of eastern Europe, the Communists conduct a bitter campaign of suppression against the Jehovah’s Witnesses, whom they regard as the religious sect most dangerous to Communist beliefs. That this sect is deliberately and grossly defamed in the Hoess memoirs proves the document’s Communist origins beyond any doubt.

INCRIMINATING REMINISCENCES

Certainly the most bogus “memoirs” yet published are those of Adolf Eichmann. Before his illegal kidnapping by the Israelis in May, 1960 and the attendant blaze of international publicity, few people had ever heard of him. He was indeed a relatively unimportant person, the head of Office A4b in Department IV (the Gestapo) of the Reich Security Head Office. His office supervised the transportation to detention camps of a particular section of enemy aliens, the Jews. A positive flood of unadulterated rubbish about Eichmann showered the world in 1960, of which we may cite as an example Comer Clarke’s Eichmann: The Savage Truth.

“The orgies often went on until six in the morning, a few hours before consigning the next batch of victims to death, says Clarke in his chapter ‘Streamlined Death and Wild Sex Orgies’ p. 124.

Strangely enough, the alleged “memoirs” of Adolf Eichmann suddenly appeared at the time of his abduction to Israel. They were uncritically published by the American Life magazine (November 28, December 5, 1960) and were supposed to have been given by Eichmann to a journalist in the Argentine shortly before his capture — an amazing coincidence. By an equally extraordinary coincidence, war crimes investigators claimed shortly afterwards to have just “found” in the archives of the U.S. Library of Congress, more than frfteen years after the war, the “complete file” of Eichmann’s department.

So far as the “memoirs” themselves are concerned, they were made to be as horribly incriminating as possible without straying too far into the realms of the purest fantasy, and depict Eichmann speaking with enormous relish about “the physical annihilation of the Jews.” Their fraudulence is also attested to by various factual errors, such as that Himmler was already in command of the Reserve Army by April of 1944, instead of after the July plot against Hitler’s life, a fact which Eichmann would certainly have known. The appearance of these “memoirs” at precisely the right moment raises no doubt that their object was to present a pre- trial propaganda picture of the archetypal “unregenerate Nazi” and fiend in human shape.

The circumstances of the Eichmann trial in Israel do not concern us here; the documents of Soviet origin which were used in evidence, such as the Wisliceny statement, have been examined already, and for an account of the third-degree methods used on Eichmann during his captivity to render him “cooperative the reader is referred to the London Jewish Chronicle, September 2, 1960. More relevant to the literature of the extermination legend are the contents of a letter which Eichmann is supposed to have written voluntarily and handed over to his captors in Buenos Aries. It need hardly be added that its Israeli authorship is transparently obvious. Nothing in it stretches human credulity further than the phrase “I am submitting this declaration of my own free will”; but the most hollow and revealing statement of all is his alleged willingness to appear before a court in Israel, “so that a true picture may be transmitted to future generations.”

TREBLINKA FABRICATIONS

Another set of reminiscences are those of Franz Stangl; the former commandant of the camp at Treblinka in Poland who was sentenced to life imprisonment in December 1970. These were published in an article by the London Daily Telegraph Magazine, October 8, 1971 and were supposed to derive from a series of interviews with Stangl in prison. He died a few days after the interviews were concluded. These alleged reminiscences are certainly the goriest and most bizarre yet published, though one is grateful for a few admissions by the writer of the article, such as that “the evidence presented in the course of his trial did not prove Stangl himself to have committed specific acts of murder” and that the account of Stangl’s beginnings in Poland “was in part fabrication.”

A typical example of this fabrication was the description of Stangl’s first visit to Treblinka. As he drew into the railway station there he is supposed to have seen “thousands of bodies” just strewn around next to the tracks, “hundreds, no, thousands of bodies everywhere, putrefying, decomposing.” And “in the station was a train full of Jews, some dead, some still alive ... it looked as if it had been there for days.” The account reaches the heights of absurdity when Stangl is alleged to have got out of his car and “stepped kneedeep into money: I didn’t know which way to turn, which way to go. I waded in papernotes, currency, precious stones, jewellery and clothes. They were everywhere, strewn all over the square.” The scene is completed by “whores from Warsaw weaving drunk, dancing, singing, playing music,” who were on the other side of the barbed wire fences.

To literally believe this account of sinking “kneedeep” in Jewish bank-notes and precious stones amid thousands of putrefying corpses and lurching, singing prostitutes would require the most phenomenal degree of gullibility, and in any circumstances other than the Six Million legend it would be dismissed as the most outrageous nonsense. The statement which certainly robs the Stangl memoirs of any vestige of authenticity is his alleged reply when asked why he thought the Jews were being exterminated: “They wanted the Jews’ money” is the answer. “That racial business was just secondary.” The series of interviews are supposed to have ended on a highly dubious note indeed. When asked whether he thought there had been “any Conceivable sense in this horror” the former Nazi commandant supposedly replied with enthusiasm: “Yes, I am sure there was. Perhaps the Jews were meant to have this enormous jolt to pull them together; to create a people; to identify themselves with each other.” One could scarcely imagine a more perfect answer had it been invented.

BEST-SELLER A FRAUD

Of the other variety of memoirs, those which present a picture of frail Jewry caught in the vice of Nazism, the most celebrated is undoubtedly the Anne Frank Diary and the truth concerning this book provides an additional insight into how a propaganda legend is fabricated. First published in 1947 as Het Achterhuis (‘The Behind-house’), the Diary became a huge success, selling over 15 million copies and being adapted into a Hollywood film. Representing the real-life tragedy of Anne Frank, its direct appeal to the emotions has influenced millions of people, certainly more throughout the world than any story of its kind. The Anne Frank House in Amsterdam now attracts more than half a million paying visitors every year.

The Diary of Anne Frank purports to be the diary a young Jewish girl kept while her family and four other Jews were hiding in a factory during the German occupation of Holland. Eventually the eight were arrested and detained in various concentration camps. Anne Frank died in Bergen-Belsen of typhus, by which time she was fifteen. When Auschwitz was liberated by the Russians Otto Frank was being treated for typhus in the camp hospital and he died in 1980.

Only in 1986 were the complete diaries published, first in Dutch and then in English as The Diary of Anne Frank: The Critical Edition (London, 1989). In this heavy tome three versions of the “diary” are reproduced: two versions of the manuscript and the published version. Anne Frank wrote large sections of her "diary," and re-wrote the remainder, up to two years after the stated entry dates. Gerrold van der Stroom, writing in the Critical Edition, observed that “she changed, rearranged, sometimes combined entries of various dates, expanded and abbreviated.” The revised text was then edited at least twice under the auspices of Otto Frank. Many passages which are pure fantasy, intensely personal or incongruous with its sentimental theme are omitted from the published Diary. In the entry of 29 March 1944 Frank described her book as “ein roman,” a novel, but this is incorrectly translated in the published Diary and even in the Critical Edition as “a romance.”

Earlier editions of D6MRD? claimed that the Anne Frank Diary was a hoax. Otto Frank’s reply to this charge was that the Diary contained the “essence” of his daughter’s work. In essence the charge against the Diary is true because it is a fraud: it is not a diary but a story in which fact and fiction are freely mixed. For how a real diary is treated see Bryant’s Triumph in the West, 1943-1946: Based on the Diaries and Autobiographical Notes of Field Marshall, the Viscount Alanbrooke (Alanbrooke was chief military advisor to Churchill and attended the wartime conferences with Stalin). His contemporaneous diary entries are in double-quotes and his subsequent remarks (perspectives with hindsight, omissions etc.) are in single-quotes. Such a scheme would be impossible with Anne Frank’s "diary."

The Dutch State Institute for War Documentation (Rijksinstituut voor Oorlogsdocumentatie), who now keep the Diary manuscripts in a bank vault, say they hold two hundred other diaries, many of which were written within concentration camps. This further illustrates the phenomenon whereby disproportionate attention is given to one text of dubious provenance while hundreds of more authentic documents remain unexamined.

The Diary of Anne Frank is just one more fraud in a whole series of frauds perpetrated in support of the ‘Holocaust’ legend and the saga of the Six Million.

A brief reference may also be made to another “diary” entitled: Notes from the Warsaw Ghetto: the Journal of Emmanuel Ringelblum (New York, 1958). Ringelblum had been a leader in the campaign of sabotage against the Germans in Poland, as well as the revolt of the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943, before he was eventually arrested and executed in 1944. The Ringelblum journal, which speaks of the usual “rumours” allegedly circulating about the extermination of the Jews in Poland, appeared under exactly the same Communist auspices as the so called Hoess memoirs. McGraw-Hill, the publishers of the American edition, admit that they were denied access to the uncensored original manuscript in Warsaw, and instead faithfully followed the expurgated volume published by the Communist Government in Warsaw in 1952. All the “proofs” of the Holocaust issuing from Communist sources of this kind are worthless as historical documents.

ACCUMULATING MYTHS

After the war, there was an abundant growth of sensational concentration camp literature, the majority of it Jewish, each book piling horror upon horror, blending fragments of truth with the most grotesque of fantasies and impostures, relentlessly creating an edifice of mythology in which any relation to historical fact has long since disappeared.

We have referred to the type already — Olga Lengyel’s absurd Five Chimneys (“24,000 corpses handled every day”), Auschwitz, A Doctor’s Eye-Witness Account by Miklos Nyiszli, This was Auschwitz: The Story of a Murder Camp by Philip Friedman and so on ad nauseam.

Another in this vein is For Those I Loved by Martin Gray (Bodley Head, 1973), which purports to be an account of his experiences at the Treblinka camp in Poland. Gray specialized in selling fake antiques to America before turning to concentration camp memoirs. The circumstances surrounding the publication of his book however have been unique, because for the first time with works of this kind, serious doubt was cast on the authenticity of its contents. Even Jews, alarmed at the damage it might cause, denounced his book as fraudulent and questioned whether he had ever been at Treblinka at all, while BBC radio pressed him as to why he had waited 28 years before writing of his experiences.

It was interesting to observe that the “Personal Opinion” column of the London Jewish Chronicle, March 30, 1973, although it roundly condemned Gray’s book, nevertheless made grandiose additions to the myth of the Six Million. It stated that: “Nearly a million people were murdered in Treblinka in the course of a year. 18,000 were fed into the gas chambers every day.” It is a pity indeed that so many people read and accept this kind of nonsense without exercising their minds. If 18,000 were murdered every day, the figure of one million would be reached in a mere 56 days, not “‘in the course of a year.” This gigantic achievement would leave the remaining ten months of the year a total blank. 18,000 every day would in fact mean a total of 6,480,000 “in the course of a year.” Does this mean that the Six Million died in twelve months at Treblinka? What about the alleged three or four million at Auschwitz? This kind of thing simply shows that, once the preposterous compromise figure of Six Million had scored a resounding success and become internationally accepted, any number of impossible permutations can be made and no one would even think to criticise them. In its review of Gray’s book, the Jewish Chronicle column also provides a revealing insight into the fraudulent allegations concerning gas chambers: “Gray recalls that the floors of the gas chambers sloped, whereas another survivor who helped to build them maintains that they were at a level ...”

Occasionally, books by former concentration camp inmates appear which present a totally different picture of the conditions prevailing in them. Such is Under Two Dictators (London, 1949) by Margarete Buber. She was a woman who had experienced several years in the brutal and primitive conditions of a Russian prison camp before being sent to Ravensbruck, the German camp for women detainees, in August 1940. She noted that she was the only person in her contingent of deportees from Russia who was not straightaway released by the Gestapo. Her book presents a striking contrast between the camps of Soviet Russia and Germany; compared to the squalor, disorder and starvation of the Russian camp, she found Ravensbruck to be clean, civilised and well-administered. Regular baths and clean linen seemed a luxury after her earlier experiences, and her first meal of white bread, sausage, sweet porridge and dried fruit prompted her to inquire of another camp inmate whether August 3, 1940 was some sort of holiday or special occasion. She observed too that the barracks at Ravensbruck were remarkably spacious compared to the crowded mud hut of the Soviet camp. In the final months of 1945, she experienced the progressive decline of camp conditions, the causes of which we shall examine later.

Another account which is at total variance with popular propaganda is Die Gestapo Lasst Bitten (‘The Gestapo Invites You’) by Charlotte Bormann, a Communist political prisoner who was also interned at Ravensbruck. Undoubtedly its most important revelation is the author’s statement that rumours of gas executions were deliberate and malicious inventions circulated among the prisoners by the Communists. This latter group did not accept Margarete Buber because of her imprisonment in Soviet Russia. A further shocking reflection on the post-war trials is the fact that Charlotte Bormann was not permitted to testify at the Rastadt trial of Ravensbruck camp personnel in the French occupation zone, the usual fate of those who denied the extermination legend.