The Nazis murdered in German-occupied Poland until the end of the war in 1945, almost the entire Jewish population – around a quarter of Holocaust victims was killed, especially within a period of three months “in an intensive 100-days-and-push”: this is the conclusion of a new study by the University of Tel Aviv, which was published in the journal Science Advances. Alone in the period from August to October 1942, more than 1.47 million out of a total of approximately six million Jews who died in died.

The people were in this period in the extermination Belzec, Sobibor, Treblinka and Auschwitz camps and by the Einsatzgruppen murdered, writes the researchers Lewi Stone. In the process, killing rates would be with extreme exclusive showed, “( … ) are about ten times higher than usually assumed”.

Within 100 days, around 1.1 million people were in Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka to be murdered, writes Stone. The camps were part of the so-called Operation Reinhard – the systematic extermination of all the Jews living in 1942 in German-occupied Poland. The people were deported with trains of the Deutsche reichsbahn and directly after arrival in the camp killed.

About 302,000 people had been shot by the Einsatzgruppen in the Ukraine and southern Russia. About 91.400 Jews were killed during this time in Auschwitz. In the period of 100 days, about 445.700 people were murdered per month in the end. Thus, the killing rate was much higher than that which is usually adopted for the genocide in Rwanda in 1994, writes Stone. There you go out of 243.300 murders per month.

For his study of the Professor of mathematical biology according to its own data had been evaluated, especially Figures of the Holocaust researcher Yitzhak Arad to deportation trains. After more than 480 trains of the Deutsche reichsbahn of 393 of the Polish towns and Ghettos to the three Central death were Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka camps the dangers.

“Until December 1942, only a few Jews in the GG left”

The camp of the Operation Reinhard would have found in the past years, little attention, writes Stone. This is not mainly due to the fact that, in contrast to the concentration camp Auschwitz almost no Survivors: “Detailed records of the killings exist almost because of the strict secrecy of the Nazis around the Operation Reinhard.”

The intensive Phase of the killings have, according to the command of Reichsführer Heinrich Himmler on 19. July 1942 for the killing of all Jews in the Generalgouvernement (GG). The GG was the part of occupied Poland that Germany is not incorporated in its territory. After three months, the homicide rate had decreased abruptly, because “until December 1942, only a few Jews in the GG were left,” writes Stone.

The Holocaust memorial Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, expressed himself nearly to the study. “On the Basis of conversations with historians from Yad Vashem, I can say that the high Rate of murders of European Jews in this period has been known for years,” said a spokesman. “The new study, however, justify further investigation.”

number, “which can understand the human mind”

Efraim Zuroff, Director of the Simon Wiesenthal centre in Jerusalem, expressed cautious. “It is an interesting fact, but it is not a big discovery that would change our understanding or our perception of the whole process,” said Zuroff. It’s not just about Numbers. It is about the decision-making process. “The question is: Why did Hitler said that the Jews need to be murdered?”

Stone stressed, however, that the high Numbers of deaths in such a short time interesting for the question of resistance. “How can people organize resistance groups within three months? It was a well thought out Plan to kill all the Jews in the Generalgouvernement in the shortest possible time – even three months was too long.”

It was a data-driven approach to the topic, said Stone. The researchers according to their own statements, among other things, with mathematical models for the spread of diseases in population groups. “If we do not describe the extent in Numbers, we will forget what happened, it will not be recorded,” said Stone. For example, the statement about six million dead Jews leave the people with a “confusing large” number, he writes, “can understand the human mind”.


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