In May 2006 I visited Warsaw and Krakow in Poland. Although it is now in the European Union, Poland has not seen an invasion of immigrants yet. I saw only a few blacks or Arabs during my stay. However, two investors told me that Westerners are buying many apartments in the cities and that the prices have risen much recently. The smaller cities might still offer bargains.
While in Krakow I visited the famous Wieliczka Salt Mine, which is the oldest operational salt mine in Europe and has been producing salt for over 700 years. The mine is on UNESCO's list of World Class Landmarks of Cultural and Natural Heritage. It was listed among the top 12 attractions in the world because of its many beautiful carvings in the salt walls.
I also went to nearby Auschwitz and took the guided tour. The guide pointed out that some of the old factories near the camp were still standing. She said that inmates at Auschwitz were forced to work and they received 3 meals per day which amounted to 1300 to 1500 calories, the minimum required to stay alive. I saw the crematorium at Auschwitz I. She explained that each oven could burn 2 bodies at one time and it required 30 minutes to burn. There were six ovens at Auschwitz I and a room next to the ovens which they called a gas chamber. If poison gas was used in there, they would have had to ventilate it very well before workers could go in and move bodies from that room to the next. Also, it would have been impossible to be in any part of that building while gas was used in the gassing room. She said 750 people were gassed in there and that it took over 2 days to burn them all. The guide also showed us an area where people were lined up to be shot. She did not explain why both methods of killing were used. The guide told us that the crematoria at Birkenau or Auschwitz II and III were destroyed by the prisoners after they were liberated.
I talked with a Jewish Polish doctor who said his father was caught by the Nazis during one of their raids. They were going to send him to the camp but someone else volunteered to go in his place because the man had 5 children. So his father (a Jew) was released by the Nazis and survived the war.
Near Krakau about 100km from Auschwitz, the guide said several thousand Jews were shot by the Nazis. She did not explain why they were killed there when Jews from as far away as Holland were transported to Auschwitz.
Not only Jews were interred at the camp as the picture above shows. Each prisoner had to wear a badge to indicate what category he was in and essentially why he or she was there.
Imagine managing millions of Gypsies, gays, religious fanatics, criminals, orthodox Jews, Soviet prisoners and miscellaneous social misfits. None of these groups is known for their hard work and they would have been even less inclined to work for people they hate. The Nazis did not tolerate civil disobedience and neither did the Allies. The Russians had bad conditions in their camps well after the war was over. They kept civilian prisoners up to 10 years after the war. My grandmother was in such a camp and forced to work in a coal mine in Ukraine and released in 1947. She told me of harsh conditions in which many people died. Some of her relatives were not released until 1952.
It would have required extreme measures to maintain order at Auschwitz. I am sure many people died there, but were the facilities designed for mass murder? That is a question which deserves serious study.
When Historian David Irving was arrested for questioning issues about the Holocaust, The Center wrote a letter, below, to the Austrian Embassy. Their response is rather interesting. In their form letter to CPD they did not dispute David Irving's claims, rather the Austrian government stated that they want to punish anyone engaging in Nazi-like behavior. We did not bother to point out that their Nazi-like behavior is a far greater threat to Austria's future.