Nazi commander owned holocaust photos scrapbook named beautiful years

Nazi commander owned holocaust photos scrapbook named beautiful years

When the former commander of the Nazi extermination camp Treblinka, Kurt Franz, was arrested in 1959 a search of his home yielded a scrapbook with horrific photos of the holocaust titled “Beautiful Years.”

Further torment of prisoners

Kurt Franz reviewed the prisoner roll call and participated in meting out punishments. For instance, when seven prisoners attempted to escape the camp, Franz had them taken to the Lazarett and shot. He ordered a roll call and announced that if there were further attempted escapes, and especially if they were successful, ten prisoners would be shot for every escapee. Franz enjoyed shooting at prisoners or those still in the rail cars with his pistol or a hunting rifle. He frequently selected bearded men from the newly arriving transports and asked them whether they believed in God. When the men replied “”yes””, Franz told each man to hold up a bottle as a target. He would then say to them, “”If your God indeed exists, then I will hit the bottle, and if He does not exist, then I will hit you.”” Then Franz would shoot at them with a gun.“Undoubtedly, [Kurt Franz] was the most terrifying of all the German personnel in the camp… witnesses agree that not a single day passed when he did not kill someone. ”Kurt Franz also had experience as a boxer before arriving at Treblinka. He put this training to sadistic use by victimizing Jews as punching bags. On occasion he would “”challenge”” a Jew to a boxing duel (of course the prisoner had to oblige), and gave the prisoner a boxing

Nazi commander owned  holocaust photos scrapbook named beautiful yearsglove, keeping one for himself and giving the other glove to the prisoner, to give the illusion of a fair fight. But Franz kept a small pistol in the glove that he kept for himself, and he would proceed to shoot the prisoner dead once the gloves were on and they had assumed the starting boxing position.Oscar Strawczinski wrote:“He rode through the camp with great pleasure and self-confidence. Barry, his big, curly-haired dog would lazily drag along behind….””Lalke”” would never leave the place without leaving some memento for somebody. There was always some reason to be found. And even if there were no reason — it made no difference. He was an expert at whipping, twenty-five or fifty lashes. He did it with pleasure, without hurrying. He had his own technique for raising the whip and striking it down. To practice boxing, he would use the heads of Jews, and naturally there was no scarcity of those around. He would grab his victim’s lapel and strike with the other hand. The victim would have to hold his head straight so that Franz could aim well. And indeed he did this expertly. The sight of a Jew’s head after a “”training session”” of this sort is not difficult to imagine.Once Lalka was strolling along the platform with a double- barrelled shotgun in his hand and Barry in his wake. He discovered a Jew in front of him, a neighbour of mine from Czestochowa, by the name of Steiner. Without a second thought, he aimed the gun at the man’s buttocks and fired. Steiner fell amidst cries of pain. Lalka laughed. He approached him, commanded him to get up, pull down his pants, and then glanced at the wound. The Jew was beside himself with pain. His buttocks were oozing blood from the gashes caused by the lead bullets. But Lalka was not satisfied. He waved his hand and said, “Damn it, the balls haven’t been harmed!” He continued his stroll to look for a new victim. Franz also frequently enjoyed kicking and killing babies from the arriving transports.[6]Franz was promoted to Untersturmführer (Second Lieutenant) and became an appointed official on 21 June 1943 on the orders of Heinrich Himmler. On 2 August 1943, Franz along with four SS men and sixteen Ukrainians went for a swim in the nearby Bug River, which depleted the security at Treblinka significantly and helped to improve the chances of success of the prisoner revolt that took place at the camp that day. After the revolt, the camp’s commandant Franz Stangl left. Kurt Franz served as his replacement, and he was instructed to dismantle the camp and to eliminate every trace of evidence that it had ever existed. Franz had at his disposal some SS men, a group of Ukrainian guards and about 100 Jewish prisoners who had remained after the uprising. The physical work was carried out by the Jews during September and October 1943, after which thirty to fifty prisoners were sent to Sobibor to finish dismantling there, and the remainder were shot and cremated on Franz’s orders.After Treblinka, in late autumn 1943, Franz was ordered to Trieste and northern Italy, where he participated in the persecution of partisans and Jews until the war’s end

After the war

Following the war, Kurt Franz first worked as a laborer on bridges until 1949, at which point he returned to his former occupation as a cook and worked in Düsseldorf for 10 years until his arrest on 2 December 1959. A search of his home found a photo album of the Treblinka horrors with the title, “”Beautiful Years””. At the Treblinka Trials in 1965, Franz denied having ever killed a person, having ever set his dog on a Jew, and claimed to have only beaten a prisoner once. On September 3, he was found guilty of collective murder of at least 300,000 people, 35 counts of murder involving at least 139 people, and for attempted murder. He was sentenced to life imprisonment. He was released in 1993 for health reasons. Kurt Franz died in Wuppertal in 1998″

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