Exhibit Depicts Nazi Science

Nazi-era eugenics research and racial purification programs were depicted through images of child-subjects and a speech by a Holocaust survivor at yesterday’s opening of the exhibit “Deadly Medicine: Creating the Master Race.”

At Harvard’s Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, the exhibit examines the implications of the participation of mainstream physicians, public health officials, and academics in the Nazi Party’s grisly human experimentation programs.

“We thought it would be interesting to show how science and medicine, though very important and useful, have no inherent moral compass,” said Susan D. Bachrach, curator at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, which created the exhibition.

The exhibit stressed the role of science in legitimizing the racial policies of the Nazi Party during the Holocaust.

“The individuals conducting these policies weren’t quacks,” Bachrach said.

“Doctors and scientists—some with prominent international reputations—supported eugenics long before Hitler came to power.”

These physicians expanded their research agendas under the Nazi regime to include the mass murder of those considered mentally ill and criminally-minded, in addition to children born with incurable birth defects, according to Bachrach.

“The Holocaust was man-made,” said Boston University Professor Michael A. Grodin, who spoke at the event.


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Footage proves suspected Nazi war criminal’s guilt

The video shows SS officer Walter Gieseke overseeing the construction of a 1,000 mile road where thousands of prisoners died from exhaustion or were shot.

Senior officers are seen drinking tea, chatting and smoking as they order the weak and emaciated prisoners to carry out back-breaking work.

After the war Lieutenant Colonel Gieseke denied involvement and insisted he was nothing more than a pen-pusher on the project.

He was quizzed by war crimes investigators but was never prosecuted due to a lack of evidence and died a free man in 1974.

But the previously-unseen film – taken by fellow SS officers – clearly shows him overseeing construction of the road in occupied Ukraine, known as The Street of the SS.

Amazingly, the film reel has laid undisturbed for decades before it was spotted among a pile of rubbish during a clean-out of Cullompton Baptist Church in Devon in 2006.

It was handed to historian Dr Harry Bennett, who has spent the last five years studying the film and identifying those involved in the abuse of prisoners.


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Workers stumble upon WW II Nazi bunker in Warsaw

Workers repairing a tram line in central Warsaw have uncovered an intact German Nazi bunker dating from 1944 and curators have wasted no time in declaring an interest in the find, with the Museum of the Polish Army leading the bids to acquire the wartime relic.

“We are assessing the costs of extraction and transportation,” said Dawid Dziama, a spokesman for the museum told the Gazeta Wyborcza daily.

“Initially, we would like to exhibit it by our main building in Jerozolimskie Avenue. In the future it would be located at the Citadel Museum,” she said.

The defensive bastion, which was discovered on Plac Zbawiciela, belonged to an entire chain of bunkers built by the Nazi occupiers in late 1944.

The bunker was created following the Warsaw Rising, the doomed insurgency in which the Polish underground army attempted to overcome the Nazi forces.

In October 1944, once Hitler’s forces had finished stamping out the 63-day rising, the Germans then had to prepare to face the advancing Soviet army. So a chain of defensive bunkers were built in a hurry.


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Julia Gillard is standing by Andrew Wilkie over Nazi salute claim

PRIME Minister Julia Gillard is standing by independent MP Andrew Wilkie after accusations he ordered junior military cadets to salute the 50th anniversary of Hitler’s rise to power.

Mr Wilkie has admitted taking part in the bastardisation of junior cadets at Duntroon Military College in 1983, but said yesterday he did not recall ordering cadets to give a Nazi salute.

Ms Gillard said it was an event that allegedly occurred when Mr Wilkie was “a very, very young man”.

“We’re talking around about 30 years ago so, look, Andrew Wilkie is the only person who can tell his life story,” she told MMM radio.

“I didn’t know the Andrew Wilkie of 30 years ago, and so I’m sure he can speak for himself on all of that.”

Ms Gillard said she understood Mr Wilkie’s passionate motivation to make a difference on poker machines


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Austrian pastrymaker apologises over Nazi cakes

VIENNA — An Austrian pastrymaker who came under fire for making cakes with Nazi symbols has apologised, a committee commemorating Nazi victims announced Friday.

“I’m sorry this happened, and it’s right that memories of this era are preserved,” pastrymaker Manfred Klaschka was quoted in a statement by the Mauthausen Committee (MKOe).

The committee had filed a criminal complaint against him last week for his catalogue of cake designs, in which he included a few creations decorated with swastikas or a baby raising its right hand in a Nazi salute.

“I see it was a mistake, anyone who knows me knows what kind of person I am. I am no Nazi,” said Klaschka, who had earlier said he was just a pastrymaker fulfilling his customers’ wishes.

MKOe president Willi Mernyi, who met with him, added: “I don’t think we are dealing with a far-right pastrymaker here.”


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Poles plundered Nazi death-camp graves, book says

A book by a Princeton professor that says ordinary Poles plundered graves near Nazi death camps is stirring debate in Poland, with critics saying it is fiction designed to cast the Polish as predatory anti-Semites.

“Golden Harvest,” by Polish-born historian Jan Tomasz Gross, is scheduled to be published in the United States and Britain next year. After it came out in Poland, the book entered the chart of the top 10 best-sellers at Empik Media & Fashion, which operates stores across the country.

Gross takes as his starting point a photo of what, at first glance, appears to be a line of smiling agricultural workers at the end of a day’s work. At the bottom of the picture is a line of skulls. The photo was taken in 1945 or 1946 near Treblinka, the site of a death camp in which at least 800,000 people were murdered, Gross writes. He says the people were searching for valuables overlooked by the Nazis.


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One actor plays 36 roles telling story of transvestite in Nazi Germany

By Steve Bornfeld
Posted: Apr. 14, 2011 | 2:01 a.m.
Updated: Apr. 14, 2011 | 11:38 a.m.

Pronounce it properly (on the off chance that someone at a party asks your views on World War II-era German transvestites):

“Trons-ves-TEAT.” Glam-ham drag queen? Actually, plain black dress. Black orthopedic shoes. Barbara Bush-y string of pearls. At age 65, a “tranny granny” who “doesn’t have breasts, but just enough paunch to give the illusion.”

Say hiya (“ha-loh” in German) to Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, dead nine years, alive onstage via Cory Benway.

“There are no ‘w’ sounds in German,” stage manager Denda Brink cautions the actor midmonologue, in midrehearsal, about his German-accented English.

“I’ve got a week and a half to learn this (expletive),” says Benway as Benway. “What I don’t know I’ll make up. Who the hell’s going to know?”

Dude/dame is kidding. And a week and a half is down to one day, as the one-man/woman “I Am My Own Wife” opens Friday at the Onyx Theatre, featuring the respected local actor performing … is this right? … 36 characters?

Director Joe Hynes corrects our math. “It’s 37,” Hynes says. “We’re also having him take tickets.”

Offbeat, with outstanding pedigree (scoring the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for drama and Tony Award for best play), “Wife” puts Benway in girly getups for the third time in Las Vegas — he previously portrayed Dr. Frank N’ Furter in “The Rocky Horror Show” and the title character in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” — for a “tranny trifecta.”

Playwright Doug Wright’s “Wife” recounts his interviews with von Mahlsdorf, a renowned antiquarian who died at age 74 in 2002


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