Kunstbilde

Fotograf ikke oppgitt, sølvgelatinkopi i United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington DC.

Fangeleiren i Ohrdruf ble befridd av de allierte den 4. april 1945. Den 12. april besøkte en gruppe høyere amerikanske offiserer denne leiren.

I bildet kan man gjenkjenne Dwight D. Eisenhower (nr. 3 fra venstre), til venstre for ham Omar Bradley og tolken Alois J. Liethen of Appleton (med bart) og et vitne, nr 2 fra venstre er Jules Grad, korrespondent for Stars and Stripes (som noterer), og ytterst til høyre George S. Patton.

De betrakter restene av et improvisert likbål bødlene ikke rakk å slette sporene av.

Den 15. april skrev Eisenhower et brev til general George C. Marshall, der det blant annet heter:

On a recent tour of the forward areas in First and Third Armies, I stopped momentarily at the salt mines to take a look at the German treasure. There is a lot of it. But the most interesting — although horrible — sight that I encountered during the trip was a visit to a German internment camp near Gotha. The things I saw beggar description. While I was touring the camp I encountered three men who had been inmates and by one ruse or another had made their escape. I interviewed them through an interpreter. The visual evidence and the verbal testimony of starvation, cruelty and bestiality were so overpowering as to leave me a bit sick. In one room, where they were piled up twenty or thirty naked men, killed by starvation, George Patton would not even enter. He said he would get sick if he did so. I made the visit deliberately, in order to be in position to give first-hand evidence of these things if ever, in the future, there develops the tendency to charge these allegations merely to “propaganda.”

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