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Auschwitz-Birkenau

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The famous "Arbeit Mact Frei" sign. It's surprisingly undersized. I had imagined both the sign and the main Auschwitz camp to be bigger than they are.

The famous "Arbeit Mact Frei" sign. It's surprisingly undersized. I had imagined both the sign and the main Auschwitz camp to be bigger than they are.

Some barracks and  the electrified barbed wire at Auschwitz

Some barracks and the electrified barbed wire at Auschwitz.

Yesterday I took a day trip to Auschwitz–Oświęcim in Polish–which is about 100km away from Krakow. If some crazy compulsion has made you go to Poland, you should definitely see Auschwitz. I did the English guided tour. The tour guide didn’t say anything spectacular or anything that I didn’t know, but having a tour guide was a big virtue because it forces you to pay attention to everything. All told, the tour was four hours of walking around and seeing.

 

The only major qualm I have about the tour is that the guide and the text on the walls emphasized that Birkenau was the major death site (Birkenau is part of the Auschwitz complex-3km away from the main Auschwitz campus).

The barbed wire and rows of barracks at Birkenau.

The barbed wire and field where barracks once stood at Birkenau.

The ruins of the largest crematorium used in the Holocaust.

The ruins of the largest crematorium used in the Holocaust.

The blown-up crematoria (blown up by the Nazis as they were fleeing) are still just a big pile of brick and  rubble.

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Written by dailyquotidian

July 24, 2008 at 8:13 am

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