Concentration camp Auschwitz



In September 1939, the German army invaded Poland. The Poles could not cope with the German attacking power and were forced to retreat time and again. During their withdrawal, they destroyed as many bridges as possible to slow the advance of the Wehrmacht. That way, they also blew the bridge across the Sola near Oswiecim. Their efforts were in vain as the German troops advanced relentlessly. At the end of September Oswiecim was captured. The synagogue was burned down but would be rebuilt in 1941. In October 1939, certain parts of Poland, including Oswiecim and surroundings, were absorbed into the Third Reich. The name was changed to Auschwitz. The hitherto unknown small town was to play a role in the coming years that would evoke sentiments of horror for years afterwards.


Jewish house of prayer.
German armed military forces, divided in ground forces, air force and navy.

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Translated by:
Arnold Palthe
Article by:
Gerd Van der Auwera
Published on:
Last edit on:
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