death camp

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The Term 'Polish Death Camp' Soon to Be Illegal in Poland

Many Poles support the legislation

(Newser) - The Polish government approved a new bill on Tuesday that foresees prison terms of up to three years for anyone who uses phrases like "Polish death camps" to refer to Auschwitz and other camps that Nazi Germany operated in occupied Poland during World War II, the AP reports. The... More »

'Nazi Grandma' Sent to Prison for Denying Holocaust

87-year-old German woman insists Auschwitz wasn't proven to be death camp

(Newser) - Ursula Haverbeck-Wetzel says there's no proof that Auschwitz was a death camp and that that's "only a belief." Those thoughts spoken in a Hamburg court Thursday—and others, such as the "Holocaust is the biggest and most sustainable lie in history" comment she made on... More »

Doc, Court: Ex-Auschwitz Guard, 93, Fit to Stand Trial

He's charged with 170K counts of accessory to murder

(Newser) - A German court says a 93-year-old former SS sergeant charged with 170,000 counts of accessory to murder on allegations he served as an Auschwitz death camp guard has been declared fit for trial. The Detmold state court said Monday a doctor determined that Reinhold H., whose last name wasn'... More »

Archaeologists Exhume Thousands of Nazi Victims

Soldiers' remains will be given proper burial in Poland

(Newser) - Over the course of six weeks, archaeologists have exhumed the remains of an estimated 3,000 men from eight mass graves in southeastern Poland—bones belonging to nearly-impossible-to-identify soldiers who were victims of the Nazis. The Soviet and Italian troops were interned in a German stalag near the city of... More »

Thief Makes Off With Holocaust Victims' Shoes

Cops probing theft at Majdanek camp

(Newser) - Director James Cameron made it to the world's deepest spot a couple of years ago, but a thief in Poland has found a way to sink even lower: stealing the shoes of people murdered by the Nazis 70 years ago. Police say at least eight shoes were stolen from... More »

Gas Chambers Discovered at Razed Death Camp

Sobibor dig also uncovers inscribed wedding ring

(Newser) - After seven years of searching, archaeologists digging in Poland have found the exact location of the Sobibor death camp's gas chambers. Less had been known about this concentration camp's chambers, which were razed by the Nazis along with the rest of the site following a prisoner uprising in... More »

Rabbi Detained for Singing at Auschwitz

His group sang songs their grandparents sang as they were led to their deaths

(Newser) - Is singing appropriate at a memorial site, where it might bother other visitors? What if it's not just any singing, but an homage to relatives who sang those very songs as they were led to their deaths at Auschwitz? An Israeli rabbi who was there guiding a group of... More »

Accused Nazi About to Be Extradited Dies in US

Philadelphia's Johann Breyer, 89, was a guard at Auschwitz

(Newser) - An 89-year-old Philly man suspected of Nazi war crimes died last night in a local hospital, the AP reports—the same day a judge issued an order to have him extradited to Germany. Former toolmaker Johann Breyer had been arrested in June, and German prosecutors wanted to try him for... More »

Walmart Sorry for Decorative Death Camp Poster

Picture of Dachau gate removed from sale at Sears, Amazon

(Newser) - A decorative poster that would supposedly "make a great addition to your home or office" according to its online listing was quickly pulled from sale by Walmart and other retailers over the weekend after customers pointed out that it featured the front gate of a Nazi concentration camp. Walmart... More »

Germany Has Tracked Down 40 Auschwitz Guards

They're still alive, and could face prosecution

(Newser) - Germany's last-ditch effort to go after Nazi guards has reportedly taken a big step forward. An investigation based on a list of 50 former Auschwitz guards who were never prosecuted found that at least 40 of them are still alive and living in Germany—and they may now face... More »

'Escape Tunnel' Found Under Concentration Camp

It ran from barracks under a barbed wire fence at Sobibor

(Newser) - Archaeologists think they've found the first evidence of prisoners trying to dig their way out of a Nazi death camp. The find comes after more than a decade of excavations at the Sobibor camp in Poland; Nazis leveled the place after its prisoners revolted in 1943, LiveScience explains. In... More »

Holocaust Survivor's Search for Lost Twin Goes Viral

Genealogist hoping Facebook can help locate 'Jolli'

(Newser) - Menachem Bodner doesn't remember the horrors he suffered as an experiment subject of Dr. Josef Mengele at Auschwitz. But he knows he had a twin brother, and deep down always believed he was alive somewhere. Now, thanks to help from a genealogist, the 72-year-old has proof his brother, Jolli,... More »

Horrific Death Camp Draws Record Tourism

Auschwitz-Birkenau has 1.43M visitors in 2012

(Newser) - Perhaps the most tragic site in modern European history is drawing record tourist traffic, AFP reports. The Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in southern Poland—where some 1.1 million people, mostly Jews, were killed by Nazis during World War II—saw 1.43 million visitors in 2012. "Over the last... More »

Obama to Poland: Sorry About Gaffe

He regrets the death-camp error, he writes in letter to president

(Newser) - President Obama has apologized to Poland for the "Polish death camp" gaffe he made earlier this week, the AP reports. "In referring to 'a Polish death camp' rather than 'a Nazi death camp in German-occupied Poland,' I inadvertently used a phrase that has caused many... More »

Obama Death-Camp Gaffe Angers Poles

He referred to a WWII 'Polish death camp'

(Newser) - President Obama paid tribute to a Polish war hero yesterday, but managed to infuriate Poland in the process. At a White House ceremony honoring resistance fighter Jan Karski, who tried to alert the world to the Holocaust, Obama used the phrase "Polish death camp," which is terminology that... More »

Germany Reopens Hundreds of Nazi Investigations

John Demjanjuk's conviction sets new precedent, say prosecutors

(Newser) - Now that John Demjanjuk has been convicted of war crimes, Germany has reopened investigations into hundreds of other former Nazi death camp guards, looking for ones who might share his profile. Demjanjuk's conviction sets a precedent that could allow others to be charged, prosecutors say, although they are waiting... More »

Third Most-Wanted Nazi Dies a Free Man

Justice seekers frustrated after Samuel Kunz dies before trial

(Newser) - German prosecutors have evidence linking Samuel Kunz to the murder of 430,000 Jews at a death camp in Poland. What they don't have anymore is a living suspect. Kunz has died peacefully at his home in Germany, where he was due to stand trial next year, the Independent reports.... More »

Death Camp Survivor Confronts Demjanjuk

Ukranian guards 'worse than Germans,' Thomas Blatt tells court

(Newser) - One of the very few survivors of Sobibor yesterday recounted death camp horrors at the Munich trial of alleged SS guard John Demjanjuk. Thomas Blatt, 82, told jurors how he saw his parents and 10-year-old brother sent to the gas chambers at the Polish camp, the Independent reports. Ukrainians like... More »

Polish Cops Find Auschwitz Sign Cut Into 3 Pieces

5 men in custody after nationwide search

(Newser) - The infamous sign stolen last week from the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz has been recovered, and five men are under arrest, Polish police said tonight. The sign, which reads "Arbeit Macht Frei" ("work makes you free"), had been cut into three pieces, one holding each word.... More »

Infamous Auschwitz Sign Stolen

Thieves remove 'Work Makes You Free' inscription from gate

(Newser) - Thieves have made off with the "Arbeit Macht Frei" sign that spans a gate at Auschwitz. The sign—which reads "Work Makes You Free" in German—was unscrewed and carried away overnight, AP reports. Police have no suspects but they are reviewing surveillance video footage and pursuing several... More »

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