Dachau Concentration Camp
The Dachau concentration camp, located one hour from Munich, was a prototype for all the subsequent concentration camps and a school of violence of the SS for Nazi Germany. It was opened in 1933 and liberated by the US army in 1945. Between 1945 to 1948 the US military imprisoned Nazi party officials and members of SS and later it was used also as a refugee camp.
Many films was trying to depict the concentration camps in World War Two, such as The boy in the striped pajamas, the Pianist, Schindler’s List from different angles and perspectives. But seeing the site itself is another sobering experience.
How did Germany become a Nazi dictatorship? With the defeat of World War One, Germany was suffering a lot, bearing the cost of the lost of the war. Being good at public speaking, Hitler with his party NSDAP (national socialists), present themselves as the rescuers in times of need, combined anti-judaism and anti-semitism that was a centuries old and calls for a racially pure national body: All “elements” that weakened or did not “fit in” were to be removed and stating that the Germans were exploited by the Jews. (How is it different from blaming the refugees in the modern times?)
“Jewish capitalism, nigger jazz, degenerate art”
Against modernity, the party also banned art and books. People were sent to prision without sentence by law. And, let’s not forget, Hliter was indeed elected by the public.
There is no denial or justification. Our guide repeated.
Firstly a gunpowder and munition factory, the site was transformed into a concentration camp intended to host the political prisoner in the beginning. There are also emigrants, homosexuals, but less Jews and Polish people. Being one of the first concentration camps in Germany, it was also an training site for the SS soldiers, practicing shooting, torturing the prisoners. The living condition of the prisoner become worsen every day with the increased in the number of prisoners. However, with the death and diseases, the Nazis realized that they need to improved living condition — so the lifes of the prisoners actually become better at the end of the war. Before it was liberated, it was mostly converted into a prisoner distribution site.
The new arrivals must hang over all of their belongings and become just numbers on their cloth — Degrading admittance procedure that is degrading and dehumanizing. Entering the camp, they have lost all of their human rights. Arbitrary decisions were made everyday of who gets the food and who don’t, who is to live and who is to died.
For the Nazi popagonda, they would distribute the photos and videos, beautify the concentration camp and that’s how we got to see the photos today.
It was really another time.
Barely anyone in Germany can escape the questions. Even companies, such as BMW did support the Nazis, building a sub-camp of its own. And the Church remain silent, too silent to do anything.
The new arrivals must hang over all of their belongings and become just numbers on their cloth — Degrading admittance procedure that is degrading and dehumanizing. Entering the camp, they have lost all of their human rights.
No, I would never be a resistance fighter. I would be a coward.
During the trial of the Perpetrator after the war, some want to see if there is some mental disorder of the higher officials of SS. However, not only are just normal human beings like you and me, but also they truly believes that they were doing the right thing for the people. How terrifying. But again, are we now doing the same exact thing? Will our children blame us for sitting and doing nothing?
And the relatives of SS, because they love them too much, would deny their family from the Nazis. For example, our guide told us that his grandfather wanted to join SS whereas her mother told her that he was forced to join.
No one is forced to joined the Nazi.
Many of the files were sealed, for some, it took they 4 years to have the trial and many more escape the ruling. Together 200,000 people was once held here and 41,500 died here even though it was ever a termination camp and the gas chamber room here was never used - During 15minutes 150 people at a time could suffocated to death in this little room. It was also interested to see the subjectivity of the museum: the film was not mentioning the killings and the imprisonment of homosexuals, “outdated”, our guide left a remark.
In the end of the tour, the guide distributed each of us a piece of bread and advised to choose a day to try to understand the feeling of hungry — having only one for one whole day.
One could not set the differences between the French Revolution from 1789 to 1799, Holocaust from 1941–1945, the Cultural Revolution in China from 1966 to 1976 and many many more revolution that has happened or even happening now. I hope there would be something in China, for the people suffered and died during the cultural revolution. But the unsettling nature of humanity, the lack of reason behind public upraising, the thrist of power, the gaps in knowledge are all the the question still remaining today.