Halfway Between Reality and Myth: "Hitler's Ten-Year War on the Jews" Reconsidered

Published: 2010-12-01

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In August 1943 the Institute of Jewish Affairs of the American/World Jewish Congress in New York published a volume entitled Hitler's Ten-Year War on the Jews under the editorship of a certain Boris Schub. This surveyed the treatment of the Jews in each land occupied or controlled by Germany up to the time of publication, as well as the development of the National Socialist policy towards the Jews in Germany 1933-1943. The survey is based on five categories of sources (discussed in the preface, which is dated 20 August 1943): 1) official law gazettes and decrees issued in the Axis countries; 2) official newspapers of the Axis-supervised Jewish communities; 3) first-hand reports of diplomats and foreign correspondents stationed inside Axis territory and the "informed neutral press"; 4) published and unpublished materials of the governments in exile; and 5) the underground press, "documents and letters smuggled out of occupied Europe", and "eye-witness reports when corroborated by other evidence."

The most interesting part of the book consists of the subchapters concerning the deportation of Jews from various countries, the passages on the Soviet mass evacuation of Russian Jews at the time of Operation Barbarossa, and the concluding summary. Herein we find many instances where the description of the treatment of the Jews deviates considerably from the post-war Holocaust historiography. Below I will quote extensively these passages of interest, country by country, and comment briefly on them.

Adolf Hitler

Adolf Hitler, 1942. Bundesarchiv, Bild 101I-811-1881-33 / Wagner / CC-BY-SA [CC-BY-SA-3.0-de (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons

Germany

On page 30 we read the following:

"Deported German Jews have been sent to various localities in the East. As the Lublin experiment was abandoned after a wave of epidemics originating from this area threatened German troops and civilians, the Polish city of Lodz became a clearing center for masses of Jewish deportees. From Lodz the Jews were distributed to different areas, such as the swamps of Pinsk, the Rokitno marshes or to ghettos of various Polish cities. In many cases, children over 14 years have been separated from their parents and sent to the occupied Ukraine to toil in the fields. Since February 1942 German Jews have also been sent to Terezin [Theresienstadt] in the so-called Protectorate of Bohemia-Moravia and thence to Eastern Europe."

Holocaust historiography has it that the some 11,000 Reich Jews deported to Łódz were gassed in the "pure extermination camp" of Chełmno (Kulmhof). The swamps of Pinsk and the Rokitno marshes (near Brest-Litowsk) are both in Belarus— usually they are considered parts of a larger swampy region, the Pripet marshes. Here may be mentioned that the former German policeman Franz Osterode testified in 1965 that the commandant of the Grodno Ghetto, Heinz Errelis, had informed him, at the time of the liquidation of this ghetto (mid-February 1943), that the evacuated Grodno Jews were being sent to "special reservations" where they were to work on draining the Rokitno marshes.[1] According to mainstream historiography these Jews were gassed in Treblinka.[2] Another German witness from the Grodno Trial, the former head of the Grodno customs office, Otto Tomm, testified:

"I still recall that the Jews spoke about that they were sent from Grodno to a camp supposedly located on the border between the Bialystok district and the Generalgouvernement. From there they were then sent on elsewhere. I can no longer remember the name of this camp."[3]

Treblinka was indeed located close to the border between the Generalgouvernement and the Generalbezirk Bialystok (which constituted an independent administrative district scheduled to be incorporated into East Prussia and the German Reich). This indicates that at least some Jews were aware of Treblinka as a transit camp.

That Jewish schoolchildren over 14 years were sent to the Ukraine for agrarian labor was also reported in the September 1942 issue of the Swedish-Jewish journal Judisk Krönika.[4] Mainstream historiography reports no transports of German Jews to the occupied Ukraine.

Poland

The survey asserts that most of the Jews left in Poland after the beginning of the Russo-German war either had died of epidemics and starvation or been murdered in extermination camps. The murder methods described (p. 149) are those found in the early underground reports:

"Hitler's orders for complete extermination required even more effective methods. German science was brought into the picture. In Chelm the gas chamber was introduced; in Belzec electrocution; in Treblinka B, death by hot steam. By July 1942, the Germans boasted an impressive record. In addition to the 400,000 dead of 'natural causes,' they had now murdered outright some 300,000 Jews."

The writers are here apparently confusing the "death camp" Chełmno with the city of Chelm. We note here that gas chambers, not "gas vans" are ascribed to this killing site.

On page 151 we read the following about the evacuation of the Warsaw Ghetto in the summer of 1942:

"The deportees were packed tight into freight trains under the usual conditions. The trains were headed mainly in the direction of the extermination camps at Treblinka, and some to Belzec and Sobibor. Only some 4,000 of the deportees were sent to work behind the front line. What happened to over 400,000 [Warsaw Jews] is now well known from detailed reports that have come out of Poland."

Then follows a recounting of the 15 November 1942 underground report on Treblinka and its "steam chambers".[5] Interestingly the survey's description of the Warsaw Ghetto evacuation appears to be derived from an earlier version not mentioning any gas (or steam) chambers. In an article by a certain Zachariah Shuster published in the February 1943 issue of the bimonthly Contemporary Jewish Record we read:

"Wherever these trains stopped, dead bodies were taken from the cars. The survivors were taken to special camps at Treblinka, Belzec, and Sobibor in Eastern Poland, where the weak and ill were promptly shot. Only strong, young people were left alive to work for the German war enterprises. However, the percentage of these was extremely small, for out of more than 250,000 'resettled' between the end of July and the end of October, only about 4,000 were sent to do auxiliary work on the battlefronts."[6]

The number of evacuees given here is much closer to the actual figure (254,374) [7] compared to the survey's "over 400,000", indicating a more well-informed source. On the other hand, both versions incorrectly have it that Warsaw Jews were also sent to Bełżec and Sobibór.

The two most remarkable aspects of the Shuster version is a) that the only murder method ascribed to Treblinka is shooting; and b) that Treblinka and the other Reinhardt camps are described as "special camps" where "the weak and ill" were shot while the strong and young were sent on to work for German war enterprises. The article nevertheless portrays Treblinka as an extermination center for the Warsaw Jews by asserting that only some 4,000 of the 250,000 evacuees were fit for labor. Even considering that at the time of the evacuation a further group of 11,315 Warsaw Jews were sent not to Treblinka but to labor camps near the city, it is completely implausible that 98.5% of the 254,374 Jews who reached the "special camp" were "weak and ill".[8]

Possibly the Shuster version is a late recounting of a now-lost tranche of early eyewitness reports that only slightly embellished upon the reality of the Aktion Reinhardt transit camps by exaggerating the number of deportees "unfit for transport" (Transportunfähige)—carriers of epidemic diseases, mentally ill, severely handicapped and dying—who almost certainly were subjected to "mercy killings" at these locations.[9]

Latvia

As for Latvia we are initially informed (p. 165) that "by 1935, there were 93,479 Jews in Latvia". Considering the demographic effects of migration to Palestine, the US etc., the population would hardly have increased by 1941. Later on we learn (p. 169) that :

"During the period of Soviet occupation (June 1940 – July 1941) 34,250 Latvian citizens were deported to or fled into the interior of the Soviet Union. Altogether some 15,000 Latvian Jews now live in remote areas of Siberia and Uzbekistan under primitive conditions."

This would bring the Jewish population down to at least 78,479. According to the writers of the Institute for Jewish Affairs a considerable percentage of the remaining Jews were then slain before German troops even reached the country (pp. 169-170):

"During the four days of chaos between the withdrawal of the Red Army and the arrival of German troops, the Latvian Radical Nationalists ruled the streets. Systematic pogroms were staged throughout the country. According to private advices reaching the United States, from 20,000 to 25,000 Jews were slain. The greatest murder of victims were in Riga, Mitau, Bauske, Dvinsk, and Kraslava."

Accordingly some 53,479 - 58,479 Jews would have been living in Latvia in August 1941. On page 171 we learn that "according to a report transmitted through the State Department" 8,000 Jews from the Riga Ghetto were shot on 1 December 1941 and another 16,000 six days later, on 7 December. This would leave 29,479 - 34,479 people. In the book's summary (p. 307) it is stated that an additional 3,000 Latvian Jews perished through epidemics or starvation. The number of still living Jews in 1943 is estimated at 15,000.

Lithuania

As for the evacuation of Lithuanian Jews at the outbreak of the Russo-German war we read (p. 177):

"Ten days before the outbreak of hostilities, mass arrests and deportations took place in Lithuania. Some 4,000 to 5,000 Jews along with at least 18,246 Lithuanians were deported to the Soviet Union. In the first days of Russo-German hostilities, several hundred others were evacuated together with Soviet officials. A few thousand fled. About 5,000 Polish-Jewish refugees had succeeded earlier in leaving for the United States, Palestine and Shanghai. The German advance in the Baltic area was so swift that there was no time for any substantial exodus of refugees to the Russian interior."

Here it should be mentioned that much higher numbers were reported by the Jewish as well as German press. In November 1941 the Swedish-Jewish journal Judisk Krönika stated that 50,000 Lithuanian Jews had been evacuated first to the Russian interior and then to Russian Mongolia.[10] According to the same journal, the Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland reported sometime in late 1941 or early 1942 that 30,000 Lithuanian Jews had been evacuated by the Soviets.[11]

The writers are unaware of any large-scale massacres of Lithuanian Jews during 1941, despite the fact that the so-called Jäger Report would have it that some 130,000 Lithuanian Jews were murdered before the end of that year. Instead we find reiterated the completely fictitious story of a massacre of 60,000 Vilnius Jews in May 1942, which I have discussed elsewhere.[12] It is also alleged at the end of the chapter on Lithuania that many foreign Jews were brought to Kovno (Kaunas) to be murdered there (p. 181):

"In the spring of 1943, a German paper admitted the 'evacuation' of the Jewish ghetto in Vilnius. The same frightful reports come from Kaunas, where there is said to be a Vernichtungsstelle (extermination center), in which Jews deported from Central and Western Europe are methodically murdered."

According to Holocaust historians only two transports of foreign Jews reached Lithuania: one convoy departing from Berlin on 17 November 1941 and another departing from Vienna on 23 November 1941. Based on the so-called Jäger Report, mainstream historiography asserts that these Jews upon arrival were brought to Kovno's Ninth Fort and murdered there. It is possible, though they were in fact transferred later to Vilnius. On 12 March 1942 Herman Kruk noted in his diary that 2,000 Jews, most of them from Vienna, had been brought to the public housing on Subocz Street in Vilnius.[13]a Mainstream historians do not acknowledge any transports of Jews from Western Europe to Lithuania except for a small transport of French Jews in May 1944, i.e. a year after the publication of the reviewed volume.

Occupied parts of the Soviet Union

The most interesting part of the chapter on the Jews in the German-occupied parts of the Soviet Union (including Belarus and the Ukraine but not the Baltic States) concerns the mass evacuations of civilians carried out by the retreating Soviets. On page 185 we find a table with data on the number of evacuees for various Ukrainian cities:

Table: Evacuees for Ukrainian cities

Then follows a discussion of the evacuations which is well worth quoting more or less in full (pp. 186-187):

"After the first Blitz period, particularly in the larger cities, there was time enough to evacuate the civilian population. The gates of Kiev, for instance, were reached by the German armies on August 8, 1941, but the city was not taken until September 20th; Odessa was assaulted on August 13th and occupied on October 16th; the Smolensk outskirts were reached on July 17th, but the city was not entirely in German hands until August 13th. In each case there was a delay during which time it was possible to carry out the evacuation of civilians.

In numerous cities and towns, particularly in the Ukraine and White Russia, Jews were among the first to be evacuated. A correspondent of the Budapest Pester Lloyd, who in the fall of 1941 visited Baranowicze and Novograd-Volynsk, two towns which before the German invasion were largely inhabited by Jews, stated that 90 percent of the local inhabitants had escaped with the retreating Soviet forces. The German-controlled Ukrainian Krakivski Visti asserted that in October 1941 in Zhitomir, of a former Jewish population of 50,000, some 44,000 (88 percent) had gone with the Russian troops, and that a similar exodus of Jews had taken place in many other German-occupied towns of the Ukraine. In Kiev, practically the entire Jewish youth left the city together with the Soviet army. Only elderly people remained behind. According to Kube, German General Commissar for White Russia, all but a few thousand of the 80,000 Jews in the Minsk area fled to the interior of Soviet Russia at the time of the German invasion. The Soviet authorities were also able to evacuate 76,000 from the Vitebsk area. [...]. Nevertheless, the assertion of the Soviet Jewish writer, David Bergelson, that 80 percent of the Jews in German-held Soviet cities were evacuated in good time is considerably exaggerated. [...]. In most cases, it was only the younger people who were able to escape. Older people who were more difficult to transplant, and those who would not be of use in defense work, or answer Soviet military needs, were usually left behind. "

As destinations of the evacuated Jews, the Saratov district, Uzbekistan and Bashkir are mentioned (pp. 187-188). In the latter, "many thousands of Jewish families evacuated from the Ukraine and the Minsk district were absorbed". In the summary we find that the surveyors have estimated the number of evacuated Soviet Jews at 1,200,000.[14]

The description of the German treatment of the Russian Jews is rather vague and incongruent. First we learn (p. 189) that

"Despite much confused and misleading information concerning the Jews in the Axis-held Soviet area, it is clear that the German forces came armed with detailed instructions as to how the local civilian population was to be handled."

One wonders what exactly this "confused and misleading information" had to say. In any case it is not described further. We then go on to read (p. 190):

"The German policy towards the Jews seemed to differ from one locality to another. [...]. The German anti-Jewish policy for the occupied Soviet territories lacked uniformity of design, but not of purpose, and thus despite the apparent lack of system, its characteristic forms emerged."

The alleged "purpose" was, needless to say, extermination. A large number of (alleged) massacres (including Babi Yar) are mentioned, the sources mainly being Soviet propaganda publications. We learn, however, that the Germans also used huge numbers of Russian as well as Lithuanian Jews for forced labor (p. 191):

"According to a report published in the Stockholm press in October 1941, about 200,000 Soviet Jewish citizens were drafted into forced labor battalions, and set to work repairing the war damage in occupied Soviet territory. [...]. Some 150,000 Jews captured in White Russia and the Vilnius region were forced to work from sunrise to sunset on the rebuilding of the Vilnius-Minsk railway, adjusting the tracks to the narrower German gauge."

Did these work commandos perhaps include some of the Lithuanian Jews evacuated from Vilnius who according to mainstream historiography were murdered by the Einsatzgruppen?

Finally we read (pp. 192-193) that

"By the summer of 1942, the devastated and scorched earth areas along the shifting Russo-German front had become the destination for tens of thousands of Jews deported from the ghettos of Poland and other German-occupied countries, as well as from the satellite states. At the end of 1942, some 10,000 Hungarian Jews were working in labor battalions on the Soviet front."

While the use of Hungarian Jews by the Hungarian army at the front is perfunctorily known and acknowledged by orthodox historians, they know nothing of transports of Polish and other Jews to the frontlines. As I have mentioned elsewhere[15], the Vilnius Jew Herman Kruk encountered a transport of Jews from Upper Silesia bound for the front as early as 30 January 1942.

Regarding the living conditions of the Jews deported to the front we read (p. 193f):

"According to an eyewitness who succeeded in escaping to Switzerland, the Jews brought to the Soviet-German front area were asked by the German authorities whether they felt able to work. Those who declared that they could not were separated from the rest, and, according to information received from a German officer, they were all put to death. The men fit for work were brought to a region not very far from the Stalingrad battle lines. There they were quartered in barracks and given overalls in the style and color of the Todt organization, but without the Swastika ringlet. Bunks in the crowded barracks were arranged in tiers of three."

Ten hours a day the men carried heavy bags of cement weighing more than a hundred pounds. Only one Sunday in five was a day of rest. Workers received one-half pound of bread per day, and in the morning a dark liquid sweetened with saccharine called coffee. At noon and in the evening they were given some hot soup. After a few days under these conditions many were unable to continue. Nevertheless, they were driven hard by the overseers and forced to complete their quota of work. Those who could not continue were put to death, according to the testimony of a Bavarian officer."

Unfortunately no references are given for these accounts.

Holland

The Jews deported in the "tens of thousands" to the eastern frontlines apparently included Dutch Jews, for on page 241 we read:

"The horrible conditions of transport similar to those applied elsewhere are proof enough that extermination rather than labor is the real goal. Packed into cattle trains, stripped of all belongings with the exception of a tiny bundle of indispensable articles, Jews are shipped somewhere to the East. Thousands die on the way, victims of inhuman conditions, no air, no space, no food. On reaching the German frontier, many older men and women are shot because they are considered useless."

According to mainstream historiography, not a single transport of Dutch Jews ever reached the Occupied Eastern Territories. The book mentions (p. 242) reports of "mass executions of Dutch Jews in Poland", but here is not the talk of mass gassings at Auschwitz or Sobibór, but of smaller massacres at various locations (p. 242):

"At Tursk, 150 Dutch Jews were mowed down by machine-gun fire and the village itself burned to the ground. Similar massacres were said to be staged in Sochy, Potok and a number of other Polish localities."

Belgium

On page 254 we find the following passage concerning the deportations from Belgium:

"The last chapter in Belgium, as elsewhere, is deportation to [an] 'unknown destination.' In March 1942 several reports referred to a transport including 10,000 Belgian Jews which had arrived in Lodz, where they were to work in textile factories turning out uniforms for the German army. Later there were reports that among the victims of massacres in the Baltic States, were hundreds of deported Belgian Jews. Towards the end of July, information filtered through concerning 100 Jews who, after having been confined in the prison of St. Gilles-lez-Brussels, were deported to Eastern Europe. In August, the arrival in Cracow of freight trains with somewhere between 600 and 1850 Jews from Brussels or Antwerp was reported."

That 10,000 Jews had been sent from Antwerp to Łódz appears to have been originally reported by the Belgian government-in-exile.[16] This supposed deportation was also mentioned by demographer E.M. Kulischer.[17] Mainstream historiography is unaware of it, and there exists no documentary evidence confirming it.

The Summary

The summary of the volume opens with the following conclusion (p. 300):

"Some 3,000,000 Jews of Europe have perished since the war began four years ago. In the areas occupied or dominated by the Axis, there now remain a little over 3,300,000 Jews, compared to the former Jewish population of 8,300,000. Some 1,800,000 have been evacuated into the interior of the Soviet Union, and about 180,000 have emigrated. But 3,000,000 are dead. They have been destroyed by deliberate means: by planned starvation, forced labor, deportation, pogrom and methodical murder in the German-run extermination centers of Eastern Europe."

Reading this one could assume that the statistical picture of the Jewish catastrophe painted by the surveyors is roughly congruent with later Holocaust historiography as far as the victim numbers and their distribution are concerned. After all, more than a year of Holocaust still remained at the time of publication. However, if we proceed to the table entitled "How they died" at the end of this chapter (p. 307), we encounter some real surprises:

Country Total dead Organized murder Deportation Starvation, epidemics Killed in warfare
Germany 110,000 15,000 75,000 20,000 -
Poland 1,600,000 1,000,000 - 500,000 100,000
USSR 650,000 375,000 - 150,000 125,000
Lithuania 105,000 100,000 - 5000 -
Latvia 65,000 62,000 - 3,000 -
Austria 19,500 1,500 10,500 7,500 -
Rumania 227,500 125,000 92,500 10,000 -
Yugoslavia 35,000 15,000 12,000 5,000 3,000
Greece 18,500 2,000 8,500 6,000 2,000
Belgium 30,000 - 25,000 5,000 -
Holland 45,000 - 40,000 5,000 -
France 56,000 2,000 34,000 15,000 5,000
Czechoslovakia 64,500 2,000 47,500 15,000 -
a) Protectorate 27,000 2,000 15,000 10,000 -
b) Slovakia 37,500 - 32,500 5,000 -
Danzig 250 - 250 - -
Estonia 3000 3,000 - - -
Norway 800 - 600 200 -
Total: 3,030,050 1,702,500 354,850 746,700 235,000

We first note here that the number of Einsatzgruppen victims (= "organized murder" for USSR + the Baltic States) is no higher than 540,000, as compared to the 2,200,000 later alleged by German Holocaust historians Krausnick and Wilhelm.[18] By August 1943 at least 90% of the alleged Einsatzgruppen massacres had already taken place.

Secondly, we are more than a little surprised to see that, according to the Institute of Jewish Affairs, not a single Belgian or Dutch Jew and only 2000 French Jews had fallen victim to "organized murder" up until August 1943—this despite that Holocaust historiography has it that 15,700 Belgian Jews were gassed in Auschwitz, some 70,000 Dutch Jews in Auschwitz and Sobibór, and 32,245 French Jews in the same two camps, making for a total of approximately 118,000 alleged victims.

Could "deportation" in this table be synonymous with killings in "extermination camps"? The answer is clearly no, for in the explanatory notes to the table we read (p. 308):

"One-half of the deportees are reckoned as victims. This column lists the victims only. The official German figures admit that up to 30 percent of the deportees die en route (Report of Obersturmführer Hiegs to Himmler). The conditions at the place of destination are deliberately aimed to make survival difficult. Some twenty percent of the deportees who arrive at their destination should be reckoned as victims."

Thus a leading Jewish institution still maintained in August 1943 that these French, Belgian and Dutch Jews were not murdered en masse, but simply deported to either Poland or the Occupied Eastern Territories, including the Soviet-German frontlines. The Jews of Germany, Austria and the Protectorate were also not thought to have been murdered en masse in "death camps". The figures for "organized murder" pertaining to these countries, we read on page 308, "refers to victims in concentration camps, mercy killings, and suicides after 1939."

This writer has found no German report on the percentage of en route deaths, or for that matter any mention of an "Obersturmführer Hiegs". However, even if we assume that this report exists and that its contents are correctly recounted, a death rate of up to 30% does not mean that 30% of all deportees perished on the way to their destination in the East, only that the en route mortality in some transports may have reached that terrible rate.[19]

Interesting in this context is what we read in an editor's footnote to the Warsaw Jew Abraham Levin's ghetto diary:

"[Jewish historian and Warsaw ghetto chronicler Emmanuel] Ringelblum also writes on 1 Jan. 1943: 'Lies in an article in [the SS organ] Das Schwarze Korps about how the transfer of Polish Jewry failed—it seems that Jews are not suitable human material for resettlement, so 120,000 children, women and old people died. So that was the end of the deportation. The forced removal was imposed only on the non-productive elements of the Jewish population.' (Kvosim, II, p. 75)."[20]

The Korherr Report together with the Höfle document shows that a total of 1,419,467 Jews were transited via the Aktion Reinhardt camps and Chełmno up until the end of 1942. At least some 1,200,000 of these were of Polish nationality.[21] Assuming that 120,000 Polish Jews indeed died en route to or from these camps it would mean a mortality of 10%, not 30%. It is generally accepted, though, that most of the Jewish transports from Western Europe were carried out under conditions that were relatively humane compared to those of the transports from Poland[22], something which would naturally lead to fewer en route deaths.

The reviewer has looked through the December 1942 issues of Das Schwarze Korps without finding an article corresponding to Ringelblum's description.

The idea that, whereas the Polish Jews were murdered in "extermination centers", the Jews of Western and Central Europe were simply deported east is echoed in the Vilnius Jew Herman Kruk's diary entry from 19 April 1943:

"The Jews of Warsaw are being taken to be killed in Malkinia, near Lviv or near Zamość. The Jews from Western Europe are being taken east, their wandering go on."[23]

Kruk, however, did not believe that the Łódz Jews had been gassed at Chełmno, as he himself had met two of the Jews deported from that city in Vilnius, to where they had escaped from a labor camp.[24] Polish Jews would of course easily have blended into most of the occupied Soviet territories, as they belonged to the same cultural sphere and spoke Yiddish. Moreover a relatively large number of Polish Jews, most of them from eastern Poland, had fled to Belarus (and to a smaller extent to Lithuania) after 1939. In the summer of 1941 some of them were not evacuated by the Soviets but remained behind and became ghetto and camp inmates. The presence of Polish Jews on occupied Soviet territory would thus arouse little attention. On the other hand, as I have shown in my ongoing Inconvenient History article series "Evidence for the Presence of 'Gassed' Jews in the Occupied Eastern Territories", there appeared frequently during 1942-1944 reports about Jews from Western and Central Europe being transported to the besetzte Ostgebiete, especially to Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus and Transnistria. Clearly the experts of the World Jewish Congress found these reports reliable. It appears that the idea of Western Jews being gassed en masse in the "death camps" was adopted on a broad front only in the summer or early autumn of 1944, around the time that the Red Army liberated the Majdanek camp. As late as in May 1944 the aforementioned Judisk Krönika reported that 25,000 Western Jews were present in Vilnius, Lithuania.[25]

A final note on the summary: Of the 100,000 Polish Jews listed as "killed in warfare", "63,000 Jews perished in air raids and artillery bombardment during the war", 37,000 were killed in action, 32,000 of them during the first three weeks of the war, the other 5,000 perished later as guerillas (p. 308).

Conclusion

The same year that Hitler's Ten-Year War on the Jews was published by the American chapter of the World Jewish Congress, the International Labour Office in Montreal, Canada, published a study by the Jewish demographics professor Eugene M. Kulischer entitled The displacement of population in Europe.[26] As in the WJC survey, the deported Western Jews are described by Kulischer as being sent, not to certain death in "extermination centres", but to "the ghettos and labour camps in the German-occupied Eastern Territories".[27] Kulischer, however, had not succumbed to the black propaganda concerning "gas chambers", "steam chambers" and "electrocution", but instead maintained that "hundreds of thousands" of Polish Jews from the Generalgouvernement, including those evacuated from Warsaw, were also deported further east.[28] The writers of the Institute of Jewish Affairs[29], unlike Kulischer, probably felt an onus to produce a book which fit more or less with the war propaganda against Hitler's Germany that was being disseminated at the time by their superiors in the WJC, or which at least did not run counter to it. The result was a volume which delivers many interesting insights into the evolution of the Holocaust propaganda at a stage halfway between exaggerated reality and myth.


Notes:

[1] Statement by Franz Osterode on 14 October 1965, reproduced in: Serge Klarsfeld, Documents concerning the destruction of the Jews of Grodno, 1941-1944. Vol. 2, Accounts by German witnesses or perpetrators of the final solution, Beate Klarsfeld Foundation, New York 1985, pp. 214-215.
[2] Yitzhak Arad, Belzec. Sobibor, Treblinka. The Operation Reinhard Death Camps, Indiana University Press, Bloomington/Indianapolis 1987, p. 396.
[3] Statement by Otto Tomm in Cologne on 21 October 1965, reproduced in: S. Klarsfeld, Documents concerning the destruction of the Jews of Grodno, 1941-1944. Vol. 2, op.cit., p. 264.
[4] Judisk Krönika, vol. 11, no. 7, September 1942, p. 91.
[5] Cf. Jürgen Graf, Carlo Mattogno, Treblinka. Extermination Camp or Transit Camp?, Theses & Dissertations Press, Chicago 2004, p. 51f.
[6] Zachariah Shuster, "The Passion of a People: Anno MCMXLII", Contemporary Jewish Record, vol. 6, no. 1 (February 1943), p. 26.
[7] An article in the exile-Polish press ("Alle Juden raus!", Wiadomosci Polskie, Nr. 45, London, 7 October 1943) states that "according to German sources" a total of 254,374 Warsaw Jews had been "resettled". According to the files of the Warsaw Jewish Council a total of 251,545 Jews were evacuated between 22 July and 12 September (cf. J. Graf, C. Mattogno, Treblinka. Extermination Camp or Transit Camp?, op.cit., p. 275f). This figure does not include a further transport of 2,196 Warsaw Jews on 21 September, which is mentioned in the Polish article. If we add this transport to the figure of the Jewish Council we get 253,741, which differs from the reported German figure by merely 633. This difference is likely due to the Germans making smaller last-minute additions to some of the transports.
[8] Cf. J. Graf, C. Mattogno, Treblinka. Extermination Camp or Transit Camp?, op.cit., p. 276.
[9] Cf. Jürgen Graf, Thomas Kues, Carlo Mattogno, Sobibór. Holocaust Propaganda and Reality, TBR Books, Washington DC 2010, p. 269ff.
[10] Judisk Krönika, vol. 10 no. 9 (November 1941), p. 141
[11] Judisk Krönika, vol. 11, no. 1 (January-February 1942) p. 12.
[12] Thomas Kues, "News notices relating to the Einsatzgruppen and the 'Holocaust' in the Soviet Union from Judisk Krönika", online: http://www.revblog.codoh.com/2010/07/news-notices-relating-to-the-einsatzgruppen-and-the-holocaust-in-the-soviet-union-from-judisk-kronika/
[13] Thomas Kues, "Evidence for the Presence of 'Gassed' Jews in the Occupied Eastern Territories, Part 1", Section 3.3.1., Inconvenient History vol. 2, no 2 (Summer 2010), online: < evidence_for_the_presence_of_gassed_jews.php>>
[14] 1,850,000 ("gross loss" in Table II "Analysis of deficit by coutnries" on p. 305) minus 650,000 ("total deaths" in Table III "How they died" on p. 307).
[15] Ibid.
[16] Cf. "From 'Black Book: The Nazi Crime against the Jewish People', New York 1946", online: http://www.codoh.com/incon/inconblkbook.html
[17] E.M. Kulischer, The displacement of population in Europe, International Labour Office, Montreal 1943, p. 104.
[18] H. Krausnick, H.H. Wilhelm, Die Truppe des Weltanschauungskrieges, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, Stuttgart 1981, p. 621.
[19] One may recall here the tragic transport from the Galician town of Kolomea on 14 September 1942, during which 2000 out of 8,200 deportees (i.e. 24%) perished on the way to Bełżec; cf. Carlo Mattogno, Bełżec in Propaganda, Testimonies, Archeological Research, and History, Theses & Dissertations Press, Chicago 2004, p. 100.
[20] Abraham Lewin, A Cup of Tears. A Diary of the Warsaw Ghetto, Basil Blackwell, Oxford 1988, p. 298, note 430.
[21] Cf. J. Graf, T. Kues, C. Mattogno, Sobibór. Holocaust Propaganda and Reality, op.cit. pp. 349-352.
[22] Jules Schelvis, Sobibór. A History of a Nazi Death Camp, Berg, Oxford/New York 2007, p. 49f.
[23] T. Kues, "Evidence for the Presence of 'Gassed' Jews in the Occupied Eastern Territories, Part 1", Section 3.3.1., op.cit.
[24] Ibid.
[25] Judisk Krönika, vol. 13, no. 5, May/June 1944, p. 68.
[26] E.M. Kulischer, The displacement of population in Europe, International Labour Office, Montreal 1943.
[27] Ibid., p. 111.
[28] Ibid., p. 111, 113.
[29] The preface informs us that Gerhard Jacoby wrote the chapter on Germany, Joseph Schechtmann the one on the Soviet Union, Max M. Laserson the one on Latvia, and Maria Schwarz the ones on Holland and Poland. The writers responsible for the chapters on Belgium and Lithuania are not mentioned.

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Author(s): Thomas Kues
Title: Halfway Between Reality and Myth: "Hitler's Ten-Year War on the Jews" Reconsidered
Sources: Inconvenient History, 2(4) (2010)
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Published: 2010-12-01
First posted on CODOH: Feb. 14, 2014, 6 p.m.
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