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The Treblinka extermination camp was run by the SS, a Nazi paramilitary organization, with the help of Eastern European Trawnikis (Hiwis), who were collaborationist auxiliary police recruited directly from Soviet POW camps; the Trawnikis served at all the major extermination camps, including Treblinka.[1][2] Treblinka was part of Operation Reinhard, the systematic extermination of the three million Jews living in the General Government of German-occupied Poland. It is believed that between somewhere between 800,000[3][4][5] and 1,200,000 people[6][7] died in its gas chambers, almost all of whom were Jews. More people died at Treblinka than at any other Nazi extermination camp besides Auschwitz.[8]

The camp consisted of two separate units: Treblinka I and the Treblinka II extermination camp (Vernichtungslager). The first was a forced-labour camp (Arbeitslager) whose prisoners worked in the gravel pit or irrigation area and in the forest, where they cut wood to fuel the crematoria. Between 1941 and 1944, more than half of its 20,000 inmates died from summary executions, hunger, disease and mistreatment.[9][10]

Meanwhile, the first official German trial for war crimes committed at Treblinka was also held in 1964, with the former camp personnel first brought to justice at that time, some twenty years after the end of the war.

List of individuals responsible[edit | edit source]

Name Rank Function and Notes Citation
Nazi leadership      
  Heinrich Himmler Reichsführer main architect of the Holocaust [11]
  Odilo Globocnik SS-Hauptsturmführer and SS-Polizeiführer at the time (Captain and SS Police Chief) head of Operation Reinhard [12][13]
  Hermann Höfle SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain) coordinator of Operation Reinhard [14]
  Christian Wirth SS-Hauptsturmführer at the time (Captain) inspector for Operation Reinhard [15]
  Richard Thomalla SS-Obersturmführer at the time (First Lieutenant) head of death camp construction during Operation Reinhard [12][15]
  Erwin Lambert SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) head of gas chamber construction during Operation Reinhard (large gas chambers) [16][17]
Treblinka commandants      
 Theodor van Eupen SS-Sturmbannführer (Major), Commandant of Treblinka I Arbeitslager, 15 November 1941 – July 1944 (cleanup) head of the forced-labour camp [18]
  Irmfried Eberl SS-Obersturmführer (First Lieutenant), Commandant of Treblinka II, 11 July 1942 – 26 August 1942 transferred to Berlin due to incompetence [12]
  Franz Stangl SS-Obersturmführer (First Lieutenant), 2nd Commandant of Treblinka II, 1 September 1942 – August 1943 transferred to Treblinka from Sobibor extermination camp [12]
  Kurt Franz SS-Untersturmführer (Second Lieutenant), last Commandant of Treblinka II, August (gassing) – November 1943 promoted from deputy commandant in August 1943 following camp prisoner revolt [12][16]
Deputy commandants      
  Karl Pötzinger SS-Oberscharführer (Staff Sergeant), Deputy commandant of Treblinka II head of cremation [19]
  Heinrich Matthes SS-Scharführer (Sergeant), Deputy commandant chief of the extermination area [16][20][21]
  Fritz Schmidt SS-Sturmbannführer (Major) gas chambers [20]
  Lorenz Hackenholt SS-Hauptscharführer (Master Sergeant) gas chambers, gas pipes [22][23]
  Kurt Küttner SS-Oberscharführer (Staff Sergeant) lower camp of Treblinka II [16][24]
  Willy Mätzig SS-Oberscharführer (Staff Sergeant) unloading ramp [25]
  Herbert Floss SS-Scharführer (Sergeant) cremation pyres [19]
  Erich Fuchs SS-Scharführer (Sergeant) generator, gassing engine [25][26]
  Josef Hirtreiter SS-Scharführer (Sergeant) unloading ramp terror [12][16]
  Karl Emil Ludwig SS-Scharführer (Sergeant) head of the Waldkommando forest brigade [27]
 Gustav Münzberger SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) gas chambers [16]
  Max Biala SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) stabbed to death by inmate Meir Berliner on 11 September 1942 at roll call selection [28]
  Paul Bredow SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) head of Kommando Rot [12]
  Hans Hingst SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) gas chambers [29][30]
  Otto Horn SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) corpse detail [16]
  Willi Mentz SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Lazaret killing station [12][16][20]
  August Miete SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Lazaret [19][16]
  Max Möller SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Lazaret [12]
  Willi Post SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Head of Ukrainian Guard, Volksdeutsche SS squad leader [18]
  Albert Franz Rum SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) gas chambers [16]
  Karl Schiffer SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) command of Ukrainian guard unit of 12 Trawnikis overseeing farmhouse construction [31]
  Ernst Stengelin SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) killed in attack on 14 October 1943 [27]
  Franz Suchomel SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Goldjuden supervisor [32][16]
  Otto Stadie SS-Stabsscharführer (Staff Squad Leader) camp administration [32][16]
  Ivan Marchenko Wachmänner (Guard), presumed Ukrainian gas chambers [33][34]
  Feodor Fedorenko Wachmänner (Guard) gas chambers [35]

Citations[edit | edit source]

  1. Browning, Christopher R. (1992; 1998). "Arrival in Poland" (PDF file, direct download 7.91 MB complete). Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland. Penguin Books. pp. 52, 77, 79, 80. http://hampshirehigh.com/exchange2012/docs/BROWNING-Ordinary%20Men.%20Reserve%20Police%20Battalion%20101%20and%20the%20Final%20Solution%20in%20Poland%20(1992).pdf. Retrieved May 1, 2013. "Also: PDF cache archived by WebCite." 
  2. Arad 1987, p. 37.
  3. Kopówka, Edward et al. 2010.
  4. Snyder 2012, note 53.
  5. Niewyk & Nicosia 2000, p. 210.
  6. Donat 1979, p. 14.
  7. Ząbecki, Franciszek (1977) (in Polish). Wspomnienia dawne i nowe [Old and New Memories]. Warsaw: PAX. p. 148. PB 7495/77. "Book description with digitized text samples at Swistak.pl." 
  8. Heller, Aron (1 November 2010). "Treblinka concentration camp survivors down to 2". Associated Press. http://www.stltoday.com/news/national/treblinka-concentration-camp-survivors-down-to/article_4144cc2d-66c8-5195-85e9-219b671ba4f0.html. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  9. Maranda, Michał (2002). "Więźniowie obozu zagłady w Treblince" (in Polish). Nazistowskie Obozy Zagłady. Opis i próba analizy zjawiska. Uniwersytet Warszawski, Instytut Stosowanych Nauk Społecznych. pp. 160–161. OCLC 52658491. http://obozyzaglady.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/noz.pdf. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  10. Cywiński 2013, Treblinka.
  11. Rees 2005, BBC.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 12.6 12.7 12.8 Vanderwerff, Hans (22 July 2009). "Extermination camp Treblinka". The Holocaust: Lest we forget. Archived from the original on 17 May 2011. https://web.archive.org/web/20110517122526/http://www.cympm.com/treblinka.html. Retrieved 10 January 2014. 
  13. Blatt 2000, pp. 3, 92.
  14. Blatt 2000, p. 10.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Blatt 2000, p. 14.
  16. 16.00 16.01 16.02 16.03 16.04 16.05 16.06 16.07 16.08 16.09 16.10 16.11 S.J., H.E.A.R.T 2007, Trials.
  17. Blatt 2000, p. 19.
  18. 18.0 18.1 Chodzko, Mieczyslaw (2010). Évadé de Treblinka. Editions Le Manuscrit. pp. 215–216. ISBN 2-304-23223-X. http://books.google.ca/books?id=7Szbrk6rrYUC&lpg=PA216&dq=%22Willi%20Post%22%2C%20&pg=PA216#v=onepage&q=%22Willi%20Post%22,&f=false. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Webb & Lisciotto 2007.
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 Various authors. "Excerpts from testimonies of Nazi SS-men at Treblinka: Stangl, Mentz, Franz & Matthes". Jewish Virtual Library. http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/treblinkatest.html. Retrieved 1 November 2013. "Source: Yitzhak Arad 1987; E. Klee, W. Dressen, V. Riess 1988 (The Good Old Days)" 
  21. Arad 1987, p. 121.
  22. Various authors (23 September 2006). "The Treblinka Perpetrators". An overview of the German and Austrian SS and Police Staff. Aktion Reinhard Camps ARC. http://www.deathcamps.org/treblinka/perpetrators.html. Retrieved 1 November 2013. "Sources: Arad, Donat, Glazar, Klee, Sereny, Willenberg et al." 
  23. McVay, Kenneth (1984). "The Construction of the Treblinka Extermination Camp". Yad Vashem Studies, XVI. Jewish Virtual Library.org. http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/reinhard.html#5. Retrieved 3 November 2013. 
  24. Arad 1987, p. 191.
  25. 25.0 25.1 Klee 1988, p. 246.
  26. Arad 1987, p. 43.
  27. 27.0 27.1 Archiefsystemen, De Ree (2009). "Sobibor Interviews: Biographies of SS-men". Netherlands Institute for War Documentation (NIOD). http://www.sobiborinterviews.nl/en/extermination-camp/biographies-of-ss-men. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  28. Stein, Joel; Webb, Chris. "Meir Berliner – A Brave act of Resistance at Treblinka – Revolt & Resistance". Treblinka. HolocaustResearchProject.org. http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/revolt/berliner.html. Retrieved 31 October 2013. 
  29. Friedländer 2009, p. 432.
  30. Arad 1987, p. 87.
  31. Arad 1987, p. 371.
  32. 32.0 32.1 "Shoah (film, internal link)". France. 1985. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Shoah_(film). "Featuring secretly videotaped home interview with SS-Unterscharführer (Corporal) Franz Suchomel who served at Treblinka; as well as other interviews." 
  33. Hing, Bill Ong (2003). Defining America: Through Immigration Policy. Temple University Press. p. 223. ISBN 1-59213-233-2. http://books.google.com/books?id=GFdJk_GM-FoC&pg=PA223&dq=Ivan+the+Terrible+Ukrainian+Treblinka&hl=nl&sa=X&ei=QKyMT8fxEcex0AX2hu3oCQ&ved=0CEcQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=Ivan%20the%20Terrible%20Ukrainian%20Treblinka&f=false. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  34. Nickell, Joe (2005). Unsolved History: Investigating Mysteries of the Past. The University Press of Kentucky. p. 38. ISBN 0-8131-9137-8. http://books.google.com/books?id=4AvLk27YJk8C&pg=PA38&dq=Ivan+the+Terrible+Ukrainian+Treblinka&hl=nl&sa=X&ei=QKyMT8fxEcex0AX2hu3oCQ&ved=0CDwQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=Ivan%20the%20Terrible%20Ukrainian%20Treblinka&f=false. 
  35. Smart, Victor (2008). "Federenko trial". H.E.A.R.T HolocaustResearchProject.org. http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/trials/fedorenko.html. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  36. S.J. (2007). "Trawniki Staff Page. Alphabetical Listing". Aktion Reinhard. H.E.A.R.T. http://www.holocaustresearchproject.org/ar/Trawniki/TRAWNIKI%20STAFF.html. Retrieved 1 November 2013. "Source: Yitzhak Arad, Thomas (Toivi) Blatt, Alexander Donat, Rudolf Reder, Tom Teicholz, Samuel Willenberg, Richard Glazar; museums and private collections." 

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