Auschwitz concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager Auschwitz [ˈaʊʃvɪts]) was a network of concentration and extermination camps built and operated by the Third Reich in Polish areas annexed by Nazi Germany during World War II. It was the largest of the German concentration camps, consisting of Auschwitz I (the Stammlager or base camp); Auschwitz II–Birkenau (the Vernichtungslager or extermination camp); Auschwitz III–Monowitz, also known as Buna–Monowitz (a labor camp); and 45 satellite camps.
- Believe me, it wasn’t always a pleasure to see those mountains of corpses and smell the perpetual burning.
- Rudolf Höss, quoted in The Spectator, vol.224 (1970), p. 211.
- He also expressed “surprised disapproval that Jewish Special Detachments (Sonderkommandos) were willing, in return for a short extension of their own lives, to help with the gassing of members of their own race.”
- (The Face of the Third Reich, by Joachim C. Fest, page 285). Quoted in Awake! magazine, in the article The Holocaust—Yes, It Really Happened!, April 8, 1989.
German author Fest adds:
- Some of the one-sided perfectionist pride of the expert comes out in Höss’s statement: ‘By the will of the Reichsführer of the SS [Heinrich Himmler], Auschwitz became the greatest human extermination centre of all time,’ or when he points out with the satisfaction of the successful planner that the gas chambers of his own camp had a capacity ten times greater than those of Treblinka.
- The Face of the Third Reich, by Joachim C. Fest.
- The prisoners [transferred to labor camps] would have been spared a great deal of misery if they had been taken straight into the gas chambers at Auschwitz.
- Rudolf Höss, commandant of Auschwitz. Awake! magazine, The Holocaust—Yes, It Really Happened!, April 8, 1989.