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Wisconsin Survivors of the Holocaust Interviews

5. Concentration Camps & Forced Labor

Nazis trick the young, old, and sick into extermination lines

Magda Herzberger explains how Jews unfit for labor were selected to be murdered at Auschwitz

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"So who were actually the people who went to the left? All the infants and all the young people up to the age of fifteen.

For instance, if a mother was with a child she was asked, 'How old is the child?' and if he or she was under fifteen, automatically it was pointed to the left.

Also the sick people went to the left, whether they were young or old, and I think I mentioned yesterday to you, that when we arrived and there were ambulances stationed with a red cross on it waiting for the sick people.

So the sick people pointed to the left were taken on those ambulances, and they rejoiced because they had no idea where the ambulances will be taking them.

In Auschwitz, there was a camouflage. We were fooled. It was a theater. It was a theater played with real life."

Herzberger Interview, Tape 4, Side 1
Transcript page 65 (PDF, 3.9 MB)

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