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1943: Death and Resistance
 pg. 477 
As the architect of the Nazi program of genocide, Heinrich Himmler spent much of 1943 implementing the "Final Solution." Named minister of the interior in August, Himmler utilized his control over the courts and civil service to advance the racial reordering of Europe, and paid particular attention to the fates of the 600,000 Jews he estimated to be in France. During an October speech to SS Gruppenführers (major generals) at Posen, Germany, Himmler declared that the Nazis had a "moral right" and a "duty" to exterminate the Jews. He proudly hailed the SS role in that process. Oddly, although Himmler told the group that the Final Solution was "an unwritten and never to be written page in [SS] history," he took pains to ensure that his speech was tape-recorded.
Photo: AP/Wide World
Dr. August Hirt, director of the Strasbourg Anatomical Institute in France, works on the cadaver of a Jewish person. As part of the Nazi quest to prove Aryan racial superiority, Hirt aimed to establish a vast collection of skeletons from all peoples. In 1943 the collection still lacked sufficient Jewish examples. Thus, at Hirt's request, 86 Jews from Auschwitz, whose bone structure exemplified the desired characteristics, were sent to Natzweiler-Struthof, where they were gassed. Their bodies were then sent to Hirt in Strasbourg, where the corpses were reduced to skeletons.
Photo: Musee de la Resistance Nationale / United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Photo Archive
In August 1943 30 women were taken from Block 10 at Auschwitz-Birkenau and gassed at Natzweiler-Struthof, with their corpses then shipped to the Strasbourg Anatomical Institute for study. Conducted under the auspices of the Ahnenerbe (ancestral heritage) office of the SS, Dr. August Hirt's research was intended to yield an anthropological classification system. He intended to separate inferior from superior races and prove Aryan superiority.
Photo: National Archives / United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Photo Archive
 September 1943: A concentration camp for Soviet POWs is established at Vaivara, Estonia; See June 28, 1944.
 September 2, 1943: One thousand Jews are deported from Paris to Auschwitz.
 September 2, 1943: Ten thousand Jews from Tarnów, Poland, are deported to Auschwitz and the Plaszów slave-labor camp.
 September 2, 1943: At Treblinka, 13 Jews use a crowbar to kill a Ukrainian SS guard. The uprising's 18-year-old Polish leader, Seweryn Klajnman, puts on the dead man's uniform and marches the other 12 prisoners, who are already on a work detail outside of camp, farther away from the camp.
 September 2-3, 1943: Thirty-five hundred Jews are deported from Przemysl, Poland, to Auschwitz.
 September 3-8, 1943: The Allies invade the Italian peninsula. Italy surrenders to the Allies. The new Italian leader, Marshal Pietro Badoglio, signs an armistice with the Allies.
1943: Death and Resistance
 pg. 477 
The Holocaust Chronicle
© 2009 Publications International, Ltd.