The Holocaust and the Neo-Nazi Mythomania
© 1978, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
 
 
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Heydrich had indeed said in his vague description of the deportation that the latter was "for use at work" (zum arbeitseinsatz). But to him this element of the operation appeared completely secondary. He contented himself with evoking the employment for the building of roads during the march towards the East ("transit ghettos"). Himmler drew up a completely different plan. He conceived the system of internment camps which officially bore the denomination "concentration camps." The only camps classed in this category were those subordinated to the Principal Office of Economic Administration of the SS and where Glücks was chief of the department "Concentration Camps." Himmler was preparing to offer all of his concentrationary [sic] labour to the important weapons industry. He intended to integrate the Jews into it and to keep them there as long as the German economy needed them during the war. That was his conception of the phase Heydrich described as the "building of roads."

9. The "Final Solution" by Gas Chambers in the Concentrationary System (Summer 1942-October 1944)

January 25, 1942, four days after the Conference of Wannsee over which Heydrich presided, Himmler telegraphed the Inspector of the Concentration Camps, Glücks (NO-500) (127):
"I shall send to the camps a great number of Jews and Jewesses who are going to be evacuated from Germany... Important orders and economic tasks will be given out in the coming weeks to the concentration camps..."
This message from Himmler to Glücks does not resemble Heydrich's exposé at the Conference of Wannsee. Whereas Himmler saw the Jewish labor force at the center of his economic projects based on the concentration camps, Heydrich appreciated the high mortality rate among the deportees in the first halting-places in the East. A flagrant contradiction may be seen in the fact that the decision to exploit the Jewish labour force did not prevent Himmler from being as attached as Heydrich to the imperative of the extermination of the Jews. Hoess, who was commander of the camp at Auschwitz, indeed declared that as of the summer of 1941 Himmler had given him the responsibility of preparing the camp for extermination on a very large scale. Auschwitz was the destination of the deportations of Jews for concentrationary work. But Himmler, in contrast to Heydrich, attached great importance to the productive phase of the detention of deportees fit to work. A fraction of the mass of Jewish deportees was to be conserved as labor and was in fact employed in the essential branches of the production of armaments.

At the end of March 1942, Himmler effected the first deportation of Jews for the war economy. He was to draw his contingents not from the Reich, but from friendly countries or occupied ones. To begin with, it was a question of Slovakia, but also of a convoy from France
     
   

 
The Holocaust and the Neo-Nazi Mythomania
© 1978, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
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