Aerial evidence of Auschwitz

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The existence of concentration and extermination camps were well known before they were liberated. The reason why it was not acted upon is not clear to me. I have heard the theory that it was more important to win the war then to liberate the camps, for defeat of Nazi Germany would ultimately safe the victims. In a way I can understand the idea behind it but I don’t really agree with it. But then again I didn’t live in those times and I didn’t have to make those decisions.

On April 4 1944 an Allied de Havilland Mosquito surveillance aircraft of 60 Squadron SAAF photographed Auschwitz concentration camp.

The selection process of a recently arrived transport visible on the ramp has been completed, and those selected to die are being taken to Crematorium II. Photo released by the Central Intelligence Agency, 1979.

Auschwitz-Birkenau_25_August_1944

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From the CIA files

“On the photography of 4 April 1944, a small vehicle was identified in a specially secured annex adjacent to the Main Camp gas chamber. Eyewitness accounts describe how prisoners arriving in Auschwitz-Birkenau, not knowing they were destined for extermination, were comforted by the presence of a “Red Cross ambulance.” In reality, the SS used that vehicle to transport the deadly Zyklon-B crystals. Could this be that notorious vehicle?”

“The mission of 4 April 1944 produced very little photographic coverage of the I. G. Farben complex. It was not until the 26 June 1944 mission (Photos 1 & 1A) that an overall view of the complex, both as to extent and purpose, could be interpreted”

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Sources

CIA

 

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