Just when you thought you had learned the worst of the atrocities committed in the Nazi concentration camps during WWII, more evidence comes to light that shatters your faith in humanity.
Listed here are eight various evils forced upon thousands of people unnecessarily, guaranteed to make your heart ache.
8. The Cleaning Crew for the Dead
The “Sonderkommanden” were a league of people in charge of disposing of dead bodies. While this occupation was horrifying all on its own, their duties also included pulling gold teeth from the mouths of those who’d died, and sweeping up the remaining ashes of the corpses that had been burned. And many of the Sonderkommandos weren’t the Nazis themselves – they were other prisoners, forced to wipe away the existence of their fellow prisoners without any choice in the matter.
And since they were relegated to a job that was considered to be top secret, many of them would only spend a few months on duty before they themselves were killed and replaced. The next prisoner lined up to take their place would, in fact, start their job disposing of the body of the Sonderkommando before him.
7. Train Ride to Certain Death
The Nazis would move thousands of Jews to concentration camps through designated train systems. Despite the fact that each train was supposed to “comfortably” transport 50 passengers, each train car would end up carrying up to 200 at a time, eliminating any possibility for easy movement or comfort.
Not only that, passengers weren’t given food, water, or any protective respite from the elements during their travels, so sadly it was quite common for people to simply die from the trip alone. In one instance, when a train carrying hundreds had arrived at a camp from Corfu, the Nazis swung open the doors only to find all of the passengers had already succumbed to these conditions. After all, the journey had taken 18 days, too long for any human to sustain themselves without water alone.
Furthermore, as if the treatment of these Jewish passengers wasn’t tragic enough, each person was actually required to buy a ticket to ride, for a standard fare price. Yes, these prisoners were charged a fee to be transported to their own demise. And – just to add insult to injury – children under the age of four were apparently allowed to ride for free.