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Birkenau (part 3)

Posted June 5th, 2017 at 09:16 AM by Solidaire
Updated July 29th, 2017 at 07:54 AM by Solidaire

The barracks in this vast camp were mostly wooden prefabricated horse barns, laid upon the swampy, constantly wet ground without any foundations. Few remain, leaving behind a forest of brick chimneys, sole survivors in this otherworldly place.

Below is the interior of one such barrack, in the Quarantine section of the camp. Left and right, spaces where the bunkers once were. The brick stove can be seen at the far end, a construct attached to it running through the centre of the barrack. The heat it produced was minimal, vastly inadequate to battle the harsh cold of Polish winters.

"Quarantine" section was only partly about epidemics prevention. It was where new inmates were housed to be taught discipline, obedience and humiliation. Where they had to be stripped of their previous lives and traces of humanity, preventing them from "infecting" older inmates with it. Where they were turned into the hopeless living-dead that roamed the camp.
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The toilets in the Quarantine camp, common for men and women. Nothing complicated about them, simple holes that had to be cleaned by the prisoners when filled. There was no pit below, just the depth of this concrete structure. No toilet paper was available, and the washing room was in another building.
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Approaching the women's camp.
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The Death Barrack, exterior.
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Interior, showing the bunks were women slept. Three tiers, with 5 or more sharing each bunk. No mattresses, only straw, most probably drenched by the dampness of the place.
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The International Monument, erected in 1967 between Krema II and III, in front of where the railway ended delivering victims directly to the gas chambers. The statues were made to resemble burned people.
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Inscriptions of remembrance and warning, translated to all major European languages. I will let the English version conclude these blog entries.
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