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Auschwitz "Bookkeeper" Oskar Gröning Convicted

Article about: Oskar Gröning, the former SS-Unterscharführer posted at Auschwitz whose duties included sorting the vast amounts of money stolen from the new arrivals at the camp, has been sentenced to four

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    Default Auschwitz "Bookkeeper" Oskar Gröning Convicted

    Oskar Gröning, the former SS-Unterscharführer posted at Auschwitz whose duties included sorting the vast amounts of money stolen from the new arrivals at the camp, has been sentenced to four years in prison.

    Charged almost a year ago as a murder accessory in 300,000 cases, today, July 15th 2015, he was found guilty of facilitating mass murder and sentenced to four years in prison.

    A former member of the Scharnhorst (the Stalhelm youth branch) and the Hitler Youth, Gröning joined the SS in 1940 and served as a salary administrator.

    Gröning stated his astonishment upon learning of the mass extermination at the camp shortly after his arrival, yet later admitted his role became routine after several months.

    Remembering one particular incident during the arrival of a transport, Gröning remembered hearing...

    "...a baby crying. The child was lying on the ramp, wrapped in rags. A mother had left it behind, perhaps because she knew that women with infants were sent to the gas chambers immediately. I saw another SS soldier grab the baby by the legs. The crying had bothered him. He smashed the baby's head against the iron side of a truck until it was silent."

    (note: the above quote is taken from "An SS Officer Remembers - The Bookkeper From Auschwitz" M.Geyer, 2005)

    Upon witnessing this act, Gröning asked for a transfer which was refused. Further requests were also denied and Gröning was reminded of his oath of loyalty by his superior officer.

    Gröning, now 94, eventually left Auschwitz in autumn 1944 to join the fighting in the Ardennes and was later captured by British forces and imprisoned at a POW camp, following a short incarceration at a former concentration camp that was being utilised by the Allies as an internment camp. Following his return to Germany in 1947/48, he maintained silence for over 40 years, until eventually deciding that as a witness to the greatest mass murder in modern history, he should speak out against the Holocaust deniers.

    In post war Germany, working at a glass firm, he eventually assumed a management position and in his spare time, was a keen stamp collector. At one of his local philately club's meetings, he was involved in a political conversation with a fellow member when the member stated his objection to the German law against Holocaust denial, stating that the sheer numbers quoted could not have been burned and doubting anything in the vicinity could have survived the volumes of gas supposedly involved. Gröning replied that he knew a little more of this and that they should discuss it some time. The man suggested a pamphlet by Holocaust denier Thies Christopherson, which Gröning later acquired before adding his own notes regarding the actions and events he personally witnessed at Auschwitz, returning the copy to the writer. After receiving phone calls and letters denouncing what he saw, Gröning decided to openly speak out against the deniers, publicly stating that he saw the crematoria, burning pits and wants people to believe that the atrocities took place...he was there.

    Charged almost a year ago as a murder accessory in 300,000 cases (around two thirds of the Hungarian Jews deported to Auschwitz in summer 1944), today, July 15th 2015, he was found guilty of facilitating mass murder and sentenced to four years in prison. During the trial at Lüneburg Landgericht (Lüneburg Regional Court), one of the former inmates at Auschwitz, Eva Mozes Kor, gave evidence. When she was finished, she embraced the defendant. Other Holocaust survivors present protested against the gesture.

    Auschwitz-Prozess: Zu groß für Vergebung | ZEIT ONLINE (German language link, features video)

    The case against the

    Oskar Groening trial: Auschwitz survivor Eva Mozes Kor criticised by co-accusers for saying ex-SS officer should not face trial - Europe - World - The Independent (includes video feature)

    'Auschwitz book-keeper' Groening sentenced to four years - BBC News

    (Note: This thread was created solely for the purpose of information and shall now be closed)
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    Last edited by CARL; 07-15-2015 at 02:30 PM.
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    some who did much worse than him got away with the connivance of higher allied authority.Damn their soles.

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    A mere cog in an evil machine, At least he tried to attone for his sins by speaking out against the Holocaust deniers, Paul

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    Gröning also appeared in the excellent BBC documentary on Auschwitz, by the way. It is highly recommended to those who haven't seen it yet.

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