German Judges Horrified by Evidence Seen During Visit in Auschwitz
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German Judges Horrified by Evidence Seen During Visit in Auschwitz

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Judges and other officials of the West German court in Frankfurt trying 20 former personnel of the Auschwitz murder camp reacted with sheer horror to a visit to the camp site, in Poland, made in connection with testimony given at the Frankfurt trial, it was reported here today from Warsaw.

The officials were accompanied by Dr. Franz Lucas, a former Auschwitz camp physician, and the only one of the defendants who agreed to join in the visit. Lucas is charged with having selected victims for immediate gassing on arriving. They saw the “Black Wall” in the camp where many thousands of Jews were shot. They stood there in silent tribute before visiting Block Ten, where medical experiments were carried out on women victims, and Block Eleven, the “disciplinary” block.

Judge Walter Hotz said he had never seen such dreadful things in such concentrated form. The court officials are returning to West Germany at the end of the week. At a press conference, court officials said they took measurements at the railway ramp, examined the distance between the tracks and sought to establish whether it would have been possible for witnesses watching from the barracks to recognize the camp personnel who selected prisoners.

The court also examined the ovens and the pond into which the Nazis dumped ashes from the crematoria. Not far under the surface of the pond, the court officials were able to see piles of human bones.

Visiting one of the ovens, the jurists came to a large hole in the ground. Come members went down into the hole and raked the earth with their fingers, extracting remains of bones and tufts of hair. One of the visitors found the remains of some words in Hebrew still visible–the Hebrew prayer for the dead “El Mole Rachamim,” (God Full of Mercy.)

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