Talk:Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp/Archive 1

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Archive 1 Archive 2

Bleeding, brothel and other issues

There is NO mention anywhere of inmates being bled to death and their blood being sent to the Eastern Front. The inmates were suffering from all sorts of horrible diseases, so their blood would be tainted.

2000 prisoners a week died of starvation? According to Martin Gilbert, author of a book entitled "Holocaust," there were 30,000 deaths in Mauthausen and its sub-camps in the first four months of 1945. This was approximately half of the deaths in the whole history of the camp.

2000 a week would mean 104000 a year. The math doesn´t work out...

"The food rations were limited and in the 1940-1942 period an average inmate weighed 42 kilograms" If this is an average figure, I doubt that anyone could live weighing only 20, or 30 kilos. It can not be average; it has to be the lowest.

Lt. Taylor was helped by other prisoners to escape execution. They did not "sacrifice their lives so he could testify".

Boy Scouts were imprisoned there? Do me a favour...

As to bleeding - it is mentioned at the spot, on a note at one of the barracks. I'll ask my mom, who is a specialist on the camp, if she has any other written sources on the fact.
As to the weight - check again. And remember that children made up a large part of the inmates.
My grandpa was a boy scout and he was arrested exactly for that. //Halibutt 10:27, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
The child inmates (all under under 20) comprised 12 to 20 per cent (it rose to 20 per cent in the summer of 1945)of the population. unsigned comment by User:Andreasegde
It seems credible. How much could this person weight? 40 kg? less? //Halibutt 14:32, 10 April 2006 (UTC)

Mind you you have to bear in mind that the picture there was taken at some point AFTER the liberation. The guardsmen left the Camp 3 days before the liberation and so the Prisoners didnt have any food for those three days. Addmitedly they didnt have much at all in the first place but that would have contributed to their appearance. If you have any further questions perhaps i can help, I work at the Mauthausen Memorial in Mauthausen. And have quite a few books at my Disposal etc. --Borbosus (talk) 15:45, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

Not sure, but thanks for the co-operation, Halibutt! I´m not over-familiar with HTML so bear with me if I mess it up a bit...

 I put in the (wiesenthal.com) as a reference about the children, but I´m not sure if it is formatted properly.

This is the full web name: http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/site/pp.asp?c=gvKVLcMVIuG&b=395115 The stuff about the children is about half-way down.

 Andreasegde

P.S. Type in "Mauthausen + brothel" and you will find lots of stuff about it. I was there quite a few times, and anyone can visit the tiny rooms with one single bed in them in the first barrack hut on the left as you walk into the camp.

Re: Icy showers - "some 3,000 inmates died of hypothermia after having taken an icy cold shower and then left outside in cold weather[11]." I read that they died FASTER after a hot shower, which seems logical, don´t you think? The body goes into shock... Hot to cold...

No problem, I appreciate our cooperation as well and I'm always happy to help new users. I know all that fancy code might seem hard to comprehend at first sight. Anyway, as to specific issues:
  1. I'll add the proper reference ASAP. Thanks for the link
  2. I'll check the brothel thingie, it really seemed dubious to me. OTOH there were such facilities for kapos in several camps, so this might've been the case. However, kapos were not just inmates.
  3. Perhaps, but my source (which explains the procedure in much detail and with horrible pics) does not mention any hot showers. In fact I never heard of any hot water in the lavatories of Mauthausen. Perhaps in Gusen I it was a tad different, but I doubt it. For sure Gusen II and III did not have hot water for the inmates (specifically mentioned by Dobosiewicz in all three parts of his monograph of the Gusen complex). //Halibutt 18:11, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
BTW, as I'm currently rewriting this article and expanding it (I'm planning to send it to be Peer Reviewed and perhaps FA some day) I got rid of the mention of an "unfinished sanatorium". It's a completely bad taste to call the sick sub-camp a sanatorium when it was (and was intended to be) more of a mortuary where people would be sent to die. //Halibutt 21:34, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
":"sanatorium" is probably a result of a misinterpretation of meanings: as I can remember, Krankenlager was ironically called "Riviera". `'mikka (t) 04:27, 22 April 2006 (UTC)
As to boy scouts: your data states clearly that shortly before liberation there were 5,055 juvenile political prisoners. My grandpa was among them. He was arrested at the age of 15 and sent to Mauthausen as a political prisoner precisely because he was a boy scout troop leader. BTW, most of his troop was sent to other concentration camps as well. See the picture of the camp file for the details. //Halibutt 21:59, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
BTW, I just found a decent English language source for the showers as well: [1] //Halibutt 01:38, 12 April 2006 (UTC)

To do list

My personal to do list for tomorrow:

  1. Write more on the life in Mauthausen
  2. Resistance and self-defence (Dobosiewicz)
  3. More on liberation of various sub-camps
  4. Expand the history section with a list of various enterprises to use slave labour

//Halibutt 03:17, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Task 4 is completed now, task 3 almost ready. Tasks 1 and 2 still need some work, especially that Dobosiewicz dedicated two entire books to the question of social and cultural life of the inmates, as well as the underground activity. Both books are composed of almost unbelievable stories. For instance: there was a "walking university" in both Mauthausen and Gusen, with lectures, exams and so on. Or another story: at one point in time the inmates had a radio receiver hidden in one of the huts of Mauthausen... //Halibutt 02:48, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

I noticed one or two things that I would like to point out: Should the comments about "Missing life in Auschwitz", "A walking University" and "a radio" in one hut after arriving at M-G be included? I presume they came from verifiable sources. andreasegde 14:25, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

Of course, as you probably noticed this is a to-do list, so in the end a separate chapter on life within the camps and on the underground activities of the inmates will be included. I simply do not have time for that just now. The radio thingie is well-explained in Dobosiewicz (Samoobrona i konspiracja), while all sorts of cultural activities are explained in a separate volume of his monograph, the only one I don't have at hand at the moment. I browsed through it once and I was astonished by the fact that so many people tried to retain their culture in the camp, despite (or perhaps because of) all the barbarity around them. Underground concerts, education, documentation of German crimes... and all of that in one of the most severe camp systems in the world. //Halibutt 14:42, 13 April 2006 (UTC)
BTW, on a personal note, the only time my grandpa is mentioned in books by Dobosiewicz is in the chapter on the construction of the radio - he was the one to hide it for some time, before it was transferred to another hut. //Halibutt

comments from read through

I read through the article looking for language corrections; mostly attempting to avoid factual changes. I had concerns as follows. (Note my slight rewriting)

  • labour
In contrast to other German World War II concentration and labour camps, the inmates suffered not only from malnutrition, overcrowded huts and constant abuse by the guards and kapos, but also from exceptionally hard labour[1].
a) it's not totally clear what the contrast is; the overall treatment or just the use of hard labour. b) labour as a method of death and / or punishment is covered in a number of texts about other camps. If this is about the labour, something more to back up the claim that Mauthausen was particularly bad is needed.
  • structure: more paragraph breaks / shorter paragraphs and some subsections would probably help. I think that it is close to the stage where a separate page should be split off though I haven't yet thought of a good topical division.
  • I changed alleged to imagined. The reason is that something can be both real (actually a criminal) and alleged (someone makes the allegation) at the same time.

Mozzerati 22:06, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Thanks, as a matter of fact I was afraid this page would be almost completely red after you drop in :)
  1. As to the contrast - sure, I'll try to elaborate on that. I knew that there were labour camps and labour camps and that conditions varied from camp to camp. However, I was surprised to see that several sources (both Polish, English and even the one on Spaniards) mention that Mauthausen-Gusen was even back then seen as an exceptionally difficult to bear, even if comparing with Auschwitz. One of the texts even mention several people missing Auschwitz after they were transferred to MG, however bizarre this may seem.
  2. Yup, a decent idea. As the text is not yet ready I decided to leave the division for later stages. However, perhaps now is as good a moment as any. //Halibutt 22:14, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Headers

I noticed Mikkalai has recently changed the name of one of the headers from camp system to Camp operation. I must say that I'm not happy with neither of the names. As the section is intended to describe the history of the entire camp complex (that is the Mauthausen, Gusen I, II and III, as well as the more notable sub-camps of Ebensee, Melk and so on) I think that it could be mentioned. On the other hand the section indeed explains the operational history as well. Any ideas? //Halibutt 00:58, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

I would appreciate it if all the comments were left on, and not deleted, as Halibutt kindly asked me to do. This is a discussion page after all...

andreasegde 14:55, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

I noticed a comment at the top that says, "This page is 51 kilobytes long. This may be longer than is preferable..."

I agree. It is a page about Mauthausen, after all. Maybe sub-pages could be introduced to feature Gusen, Melk, and Hartheim by themselves. There was also a camp by the Traun/Muhlbach rivers in Linz (Lunzer Strasse) that deserves some attention, as it provided workers for the steel industry.

andreasegde 15:15, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

I moved your comment upwards, to the section of the discussion you clearly referred to. And I replied there :)
As to other issues - perhaps we might want to split the article somewhat, but I wouldn't like to do that, at least not right now. This article is intended to cover the entire Mauthausen-Gusen complex, not just it's main sub-camp of Mauthausen. Of course, separate articles on Ebensee, Gusen, Melk and so on could also be nice (and many of them are already there), but I envisioned this page as it is. And I wouldn't really bother making this article shorter right now, barely any featured article is under 32k. //Halibutt 15:23, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

You´re not going to like this, but... "I wouldn't like to do that", and "I envisioned this page as it is" strikes me as being somewhat self-opinionated. I know you have done nearly all of the really excellent work on this, as well as knowing that you have a personal family interest in it as well, but... y´know?

(Please feel free to delete this - it´s just a personal comment, and no harm intended.)

andreasegde 15:46, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

No need to delete anyone's comments; you are perfectly entitled to your oppinion just like I am to mine :) And my comment above was exactly that: a personal opinion. If others decide that such a split is indeed necessary then we might do that anyway, regardless of what I think. It's wikipedia and this article is by no means "mine". It's ours.
As to specific issues, yesterday I had a little chat with Mozzerati and we discussed, among other things, the way to split this article. My opinion is that, if such a split is indeed necessary (which I doubt; I never liked the 32kb limit anyway), it should be done along the topical lines and not along geographical ones. What I mean is that it seems a better option to move parts of this article to, say, Operational history of Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp and Inmates of Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp rather than divide it onto Melk concentration camp, Gusen I concentration camp, Ebensee concentration camp, Vienna I concentration camp and so on. //Halibutt 11:21, 14 April 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for your reply. I still think that Mauthausen should be featured by itself (as it was big enough) and also to have links to pages featuring Gusen/Melk etc. They all deserve something specific, and not to be lumped together in an article that is difficult to get through, because of the huge amount of information involved. Melk is quite a distance from Linz, and Ebensee also. Gusen was close by, but it still deserves a page to itself. My point is this: The people that are contributing to this know a lot about the camps, but what about about the average reader/viewer? Or are we only doing it for ourselves? So much information about a variety of camps is likely to confuse, and not to inform. I suggest trying to read a tax form, which the writers of think is easy to comprehend, but is not easily understandable to "the man on the omnibus". Wikipedia is here to inform, and not to confuse, or overload, with information. Don´t forget that thousands of people have absolutely NO idea where Austria is... Let´s keep it informative and easy (terrible choice of word) to take in.

andreasegde 22:21, 17 April 2006 (UTC)

I cut out a reference to Ziereis because it stated that he talked about the plan to kill the inmates during his trial; but he was never put on trial. He died a of bullet wounds whilst trying to escape from US soldiers.

andreasegde 16:08, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Not really, he was shot while trying to escape from an American patrol lead by a number of former inmates of Mauthausen, but he was then brought back to the camp, where he gave extensive testimony on May 24. He died afterwards, but the testimony is there - and this is what Dobosiewicz related to (pages 385-387), it was my mistake to call it a trial. //Halibutt 16:27, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Edit: "the slave labour of the inmates was used in more than 50 sub-camps in all parts of Austria and southern Germany." Changed to, "slave labour was used in more than 50 sub-camps in all parts of Austria and southern Germany."

You can not infer that the inmates were lent out to other camps and then returned at night. They were sent to other camps.

andreasegde 10:08, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

On the other hand it was common to lend slaves to various companies and farms. These indeed returned to the camps at night. //Halibutt 13:34, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

I have a problem with your style of writing. "It was common" needs a quote, or facts, to support it. Remember "children were a large part of the camp"? That was wrong. How many inmates were lent out? What percentage? Let´s be clear about this, please. If we start with the basic idea that Nazis were Germans, does that mean that all Germans were Nazis? "It was common" for Germans to join the Nazi party, but not all of them did...

andreasegde 14:29, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

My English is far from perfect, but this is pretty a simple omission. What I meant to say was that it was a common procedure in German WWII concentration camps to rent or lease slaves to a variety of privately-own businesses. It happened in all concentration camps I ever read of and in the article is even referenced. Should I reference it at the talk page as well? //Halibutt 21:10, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Language

Might I ask you, andreasegde: what is your proficiency with English language? (just curious if you are a native speaker) Renata 14:37, 23 April 2006 (UTC)

I was born in England a long, long time ago, :) and I am an English teacher. (Please take pity on me - laugh...) If I tend to go overboard on corrections, and sometimes even style, my explanation is that it is instinctive. It´s a bit like an itch that you have to scratch before it drives you mad :) I am new to Wikipedia, so I apologise most profusely if I have "rubbed up anyone the wrong way", or irritated them.

andreasegde 15:16, 23 April 2006 (UTC)

Nah, your edits and corrections are fine. I was just curious. Renata 16:10, 23 April 2006 (UTC)
Mozzerati, whom I asked to do some copy-edit here was even mad at you since you've corrected pretty much everything he wanted to fix :) //Halibutt 17:34, 23 April 2006 (UTC)

That sounds like a compliment! If it is, then I saved Mozzerati a bit of time. I enjoy going through these things and fixing them. If it sounds like a sad life, then it probably is :) You are all doing some great work, and I would like to tag on at the end of the line and add my own modest contribution, as well as "getting up people´s noses", which I really try not to do. :) I have to quote a McCartney lyric: "I´m fixing a hole where the rain gets in, to stop my mind from wandering..." Viva Wikipedia

andreasegde 18:24, 23 April 2006 (UTC)

KL versus KZ

I have just changed all references from KL Mauthausen to KZ Mauthausen, because that is how the camps are referred to/called in Austria. I checked it out with Leo.org as well. I know it´s not logical, but it is as all the camps are/were known... andreasegde 17:01, 24 April 2006 (UTC)

Well, in fact the authors I know use both versions from time to time, and this is true to all the camps in Europe I guess. In fact I don't even know if there was some difference between KZ and KL concentration camps, or were these just two versions of the same abbreviation. //Halibutt 13:26, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
well, "KL" (for "_K_onzentrations_L_ager") was the "official" term - it occured in all the documents etc - "KZ" (for "_K_on_Z_entrationslager" i guess) was in use probably because it sounded harder or was easier to memorize (according to a professor of mine, "KZ" was even used by some (if not most) guards and civilians). hope to have helped, -fin 19:41, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
I'm not sure if it matters, but "KZ" is also the common abbreviation in Germany now. In fact I think outside of a few informed people very few would know the meaning of the "KL" abbreviation; I've certainly never seen or heard it used. --Stargelman 20:31, 8 August 2007 (UTC)

Corrections

I have started to go through it with "a fine tooth-comb" to iron-out any little grammar stuff, or simple mistakes, but I´m not finished yet. The wolves are at the door, and I have to work... andreasegde 10:36, 26 April 2006 (UTC)

Take your time, there's still a lot of things to fix (as per the Peer Review) and I will probably add new mistakes as well... //Halibutt 10:57, 26 April 2006 (UTC)
And again, thanks for your hard work on correcting the article. I took the liberty to clarify on some of your changes today, but I left most of them unchanged as apparently there's little in your style that could be further improved :) //Halibutt 13:25, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

Crematoria and boy scouts

Not sure about this:

"infamous Hartheim Castle[17]), or killed by lethal injection and cremated in the local crematorium."

A "local" crematorium; meaning it was also used for the public at large. Was this local crematorium in Mauthausen, or near Hartheim? As far as I know the large majority of Austrians were Catholic and preferred to be buried. Mauthausen was only a small village back then, as was Hartheim. I will try to check it out, but the only place possible for a crematorium would be Linz. Transporting them 25km to burn the bodies? Hmmm...

I would appreciate your help on this one... andreasegde 12:22, 30 April 2006 (UTC)

Boy Scouts

The first groups were composed mostly of artists, scientists, boy scouts, I know about the Boy Scouts, but how many of them were there? Because most children were in the "Hitler Youth", I find it unusual, and interesting, that there was a Boy Scout movement in Germany at that time. (The Boy Scout movement, after all, was started by an Englishman.) andreasegde 12:22, 30 April 2006 (UTC)

  1. Crematorium - there were two local crematoria: one in Mauthausen and the other one in Gusen. Both were local in the sense that they were built within the camp complex for the inmates and not for the civilians.
  2. The boy scouts were not German, they were Polish (check the link), not German. And in Poland most children were not in the Hitler Youth. I will try to dig up the numbers, though I'm pretty sure they will be only estimates as all the boy scouts were classified as political prisoners and not as boy scouts (check the camp file of my grandpa - it's linked from the main article. He was arrested at the age of 15 for being a boy scout troop leader and sent to Mauthausen when he was 16. And still he was classified as a political prisoner). //Halibutt 13:23, 30 April 2006 (UTC)

Not sure if they should be referred to as "local", though.

Anyway; maybe the Hitler Youth and the Boy Scouts could have a page to themselves, or at least commented on in a serious way. An interesting struggle for the hearts, and minds, of young people during the pre-war years. As Hitler once said: "Why do we need you? We already have your children", (meaning the Hitler Youth.)

andreasegde 13:54, 30 April 2006 (UTC)

I don't think it's relevant to this page though. As to crematoria - they were local in the sense I described above. Any better word that could fit here? //Halibutt

Where were the crematoria, exactly? Were they/was it in the camp, or in the local town? Was it one, or were there two, or three? (Considering the number of dead, of course.) The exact location is a major point.

andreasegde 23:48, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

In the camps. There were at least three I could think of in the entire Mauthausen-Gusen complex. One was in Mauthausen itself, the other in Gusen I and there was also one in the Hartheim Castle. //Halibutt

I've just returned from Mauthausen. In the main camp itself, there is an underground complex holding the gas chamber, 3 crematoria (two to the left, and one to the right), and a dissection room (just off from the one to the right). There are other rooms in the underground complex, such as a body storage room. Kmasters0 (talk) 16:44, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

BTW - On the "wailing wall," where there are many commemorative plaques to nations and groups, there is a plaque for the Boy Scouts. Kmasters0 (talk) 16:44, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

Romany-Gypsy

I have found lots of pages (in English) that spell the words as "Romany-Gypsy", although the words Gypsy/Gypsies are considered to be insulting. Here are two:

http://www.geocities.com/soho/3698/rom.htm

http://www.thefellowship.info/Global%20Missions/UPG/Romany.icm

"Romany is the correct term for a Gypsy. Although better known as "gypsies" this group of people speak a language known as Romani, which is based on ancient Sanskrit, and is still related to other languages of their original homeland of northern India. The correct and less offensive term for this ethno-linguistic group is Romany."

I was born in England, but I speak English.

Yeah, it's one of the forms used. However, the form you used created a red link while Roma people already have their article on wikipedia. //Halibutt 11:20, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

It´s not "one of the forms" used in English. I´m sure that Romany people have their own original version, which they are totally entitled to, of course, but other countries often change names to suit their own language. I refer you to the word "Police", which was originally English, but has been changed by many countries to suit their own language.

As this page is the English version of "Mauthausen-Gusen", I would have thought that the references should be in English. If the link is wrong, then change the link... andreasegde 17:12, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Andrea, the article on Roma people is under that name for a purpose, I presume. If you would like to move it to Romany people, then feel free to propose such a move at its talk page or at Wikipedia:Requested moves. However, changing the link to that page from a working one to a non-working red link is not very beneficial, is it. //Halibutt 17:22, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Trains

Are you advocating that there was only one explanation for the deaths of the prisoners on the trains? I find that hard to believe. Is it not possible that some did die - without adequate food or water - because of the Allied bombing campaign in Germany/Austria? Is it not possible that some were left for days at a time (and the Nazis didn´t care if they died or not) whilst the tracks were being repaired? (From Auschwitz to Mauthausen is a long railway journey.)

The opinion that you are propogating is that were no other reasons for the deaths of the prisoners, apart from the horrible fact that it was purely pre-meditated murder. Is there a possibility that it was pre-meditated neglect? I suggest you look up the words, "Abuse", and "Neglect". One is direct, and the the other is indirect. They both mean "Guilty". I think that both words apply to Mauthausen...

Maybe my correction/change sounded like I was not being overly harsh enough about what happened, but the fact that you deleted it, and didn´t correct it, was not nice.

If it is "Andreasegde´s theory", as you wrote, then I challenge you to disprove it. Did the Allies target, and bomb, railway lines, and train stations?

How long were they out of action after being bombed?

Were not troop movements more important than transports of prisoners? andreasegde 22:57, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

Perhaps, but it is a sheer speculation. The direct cause of their death was the fact that the Germans put them in the trains in harsh weather, without food or water and even kept the civilians from providing the people in the trains with it. Whether they did so because of Allied bombings or not is irrelevant IMO, as Germans did not force the civilian transports or military transports to share the same fate, evethough these were targeted by Allied bombings as well. And of course those who were left in the trains at the Gusen station to die of starvation did not die there because of allied bombings either, they died because the Germans wanted them to. Of course, you are free to provide some reference that would state loudly and clearly that the death toll of evacuation transports was in part due to allied air raids. //Halibutt 11:19, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Re; Trains (again...) The train lines and stations were targeted; not the people on board. The idea was to bomb any kind of transportation lines, and to stop, or at least slow down, the passage of munitions to the Front. The Royal Airforce had specific orders to "Tear the heart out of Nazi Germany" - This meant factories and transport lines. I have found many references about this.

Linz was a "transport-hub", and trains had to pass through it on their way to Mauthausen. They are still finding unexploded bombs there to this day.

Yes, you are right; I made the fatal error of putting in something that I could not prove - at least not yet, anyway, and I apologise for being rash. But your evidence that prisoners were deliberately murdered on the trains by being left to freeze, or starve, deserves some thought: The camp is not next to the station; it is some distance away. How long would it take to drag hundreds of dead bodies from a train, and then load them manually onto trucks, so that they could be taken to the camp to be incinerated/cremated? If there were so many ways of killing them after they had walked to the camp from the train station, (which was the normal practice) then why kill them on the train? It would have been a drain on resources, and manpower. Don´t forget that trains were in short supply and were urgently needed for other transports. If they left a train on the tracks for two or three days, wouldn´t that disrupt the flow of incoming prisoners? They were arriving "every day"...

We all have enough evidence to prove that Nazi Germany had no respect at all for the prisoners, but I reiterate my previous point: Abuse, and/or neglect?

andreasegde 17:57, 2 May 2006 (UTC)

Bombing

I have found lots of references that between July, 1944, and April, 1945 there were at least 21 bombing attacks on Linz; meaning its railway lines and industry. The Industry in Linz was, obviously, built next to the railway lines. Various formations of 300, 450, 720, and 830 bombers, in individual attacks, were sent to bomb Linz. The "transport-hub" of Linz was/is the only connection between Salzburg, Passau and Vienna. (Although there was a single track that went north to the Czech Republic, as it is now known. It was the old Linz-Budweis line that used to carry coaches, which were drawn by horses.) The only - single-track - line to Mauthausen-Gusen had to pass through Linz. (Not forgetting that they had to come from Poland via Vienna or Passau.)

Is this, "sheer speculation?". By the way, I know the meaning of the word "speculation", and you can save some time by not highlighting it...

Considering the fact that the transportation of prisoners increased dramatically during this period, is it not possible that trains were seriously delayed - for days at a time, without food or water - in the winter of 1944-1945?

My point is this - and it refers to the general attitude of the whole article:

If - as has been written - every activity in the camps was based on "Kill, kill kill", then it leaves no room for anything else, (like ignorance or neglect, maybe) and sounds like a heavily-reinforced POV.

If you put the forward the "fact" that the Nazis were such experts in the art of murder, you are not allowing for the fact that they were also unbelievably arrogant, stupid, and vicious without thought. You are raising them to a level of totally expert, cold-blooded murdering professionals, who never made any mistakes, and who were never guilty of being total idiots.

You also portray them as something to be feared, and not to be ridiculed, because they did lose, didn´t they? The few prisoners who survived should be able to look back at their own survival and feel proud that they survived. They won, and not the Nazis.

This was a war, and the report of it should not be - what is beginning to seem to me - like propaganda. andreasegde 11:51, 3 May 2006 (UTC)

Andrea, you got me wrong. I know there were air raids on Linz, Grzesiuk even described a single plane being shot down over the camp of Gusen itself in 1945, during one of such air raids (he also described the Germans shooting at the parachuting crew). Which however does not change the fact. Also, you apparently forgot that since March of 1943 Gusen camp had its own station, later linked to Mauthausen. Indeed, initially the prisoners were marched through the town of Mauthausen itself, but later on a separate station was built. So the transporting the dead argument does not hold the water. Also, it does not explain why did the American soldiers found so many bodies in the trains. [2], [3], [4]
Of course, the rail system was targeted and even the "evacuation trains" were at times strafed[5]. But the direct cause of death of these people was the fact that they were incarcerated by Germany and then mindlessly sent in large transports and harsh weather with no food, not the fact that there was a war going on.
As to German attitude - I don't know if there was stupidity or neglect going on. Perhaps. But this IMO changes little - and definitely most of the people were not murdered in the camp because of them. It was an efficient killing machine, a factory of dead, and the reasons for that are less important to me than the mere fact that it did all happen. Or perhaps I got you wrong? //Halibutt 12:53, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

OK; here we go again…

"since March of 1943 Gusen camp had its own station, later linked to Mauthausen." The camp of Mauthausen never had a rail link. It was on a steep hill. You mean the village of Mauthausen. This page is called "Mauthausen", or am I wrong?

"why did the American soldiers found (SIC) so many bodies in the trains" Do you seriously believe that the "German Authorities" left people on the trains to die a few hours before the Americans arrived? They were busy burning the records of the camp or running away, were they not?

"mindlessly sent in large transports" Thank you - you agree with me (at last) that they did not think about it.

"was an efficient killing-machine" There you go again. You are raising them to perfectionists. Were they never stupid?

"I don't know if there was stupidity or neglect going on. Perhaps." This is a POV, because you are not sure. Do you really think that they were intelligent?

The camp of Mauthausen did have a rail link, not from the village of Mauthausen, but from the Gusen I camp. At least that's what Dobosiewicz and Grzesiuk write. As to the corpses in the trains - I'm not sure, but the rail transports from other sub-camps did arrive to the place until the very end, many of them apparently arrived late enough that they did not disposed of the bodies of those who died on the road. As to mindlessness, perhaps my English is not good enough. What I meant to say is that they did not care whether all of the people would die or not. However, this does not make them any less responsible. And this does not the Allies any more responsible for their deaths either. As to them being stupid - I don't know. As to them being perfectionists - they were. It wasn't like the people in the camps were slaughtered in large number because someone forgot that they should be given food. It happened because they wanted them to starve. It was a carefully designed, premeditated system. As to their intelligence - what does it have to do with the topic? Come on, it doesn't matter whether the murderer has an IQ of 200 or 80, what matters is the fact that the crime indeed happened. All the rest is just the context. //Halibutt 11:27, 11 May 2006 (UTC)

Germans - Nazis

“German authorities”? Why don’t you just say Germans, the German Government, the people in charge, or the people responsible? This is silly nit-picking, and wrong. Adolf Hitler was the Nazi dictator who was in control of everything. 90% of people (as was claimed) voted for Hitler’s Nazi Reich. A huge percentage joined the Nazi Party. Should we refer to some Poles as Prussians today? No, they are Polish. Should we refer to America as “The Colonies”? (That’s what they were called by the British.) The difference is what was, and what is

As to your corrections:

“Gypsy is derogatory, I presume”. Yes, it is considered to be the same as Wogs, Pakis, and Niggers, and is definitely a derogatory name. You should also know that “Polaks” is sadly a derogatory, American-term for Polish people in the USA.

“I presume” is a POV. (You taught me that Wikipedia rule… and I thank you.)

“I doubt it was a single loyalty oath”.

Yes it was. It was changed from the usual oath to specifically include the name of Adolf Hitler. He changed it to ensure the soldiers would be loyal to him, and to him alone. “I doubt” is also a POV.

I put “Polish” in twice, because I thought (in my humble opinion) that it made it clearer, and easier to follow.

You are ´nit-picking´ about a person who knows that English-speaking people tend to repeat certain words, so as to make the meaning clear. Would you disagree with/nit-pick the following sentence? “The people in Poland are known as Polish, and they speak a language called Polish.” (You probably would..laugh...)

I don’t think - a POV - anyone who was not a Nazi-Party member worked in a Death-Camp. Their loyalty would be in question. The Kapos were an exception, of course, because they were former prisoners. “Divide and conquer” was the rule.

“Heavy Industry”. This is so simple it makes me laugh… It means that industry is not ´heavy´ in weight-terms, but is a title for industry that is labour-intensive.

Would you write, “The Light Brigade”, or, “the light brigade”? (It was a horse-regiment that fought in the Crimea.) Did they have lamps in their hands, or were they “light”? There is a definite difference between an adjective and a noun.

“Work in the quarry”

Yes, you are right. Stealing a piece of bread was punishable by death. What better way to kill them by sending them to the ´Work Detail´? “Extermination through Labour” as you wrote.

P.S. By the way, do you know the original British meaning of “nit-picking”? Take it easy, and chill-out…. andreasegde 17:54, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

I found this very interesting:

"You have your views and apparently are dedicated to spreading them in wiki at all cost. So be it. You don't want to listen to arguments of other people - fine, do as you please. Want to change the articles to your liking - fine again. But be advised that it's a two-way road."

Well... who wrote this? (Laugh...)

P.S.

What do you mean by a "Weasel-term"? My first reaction is to find it very insulting. The dictionarary defines it as an animal, or "a person regarded as sneaky or treacherous." andreasegde 19:02, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

First of all, talk pages are for writing our POV on the matter, here we use our POVs to establish a NPOV for the article page. That's why I'm not putting my I presume remarks to the article. However, it's hard to discuss with your point of view without stating mine, is it. :) Now on to specific issues. I will reply in points so that it'd be easier for you to refer to them by their numbers. Makes replies easier to read IMO.
  1. As to Germans/Nazis/German authorities: I oppose the usage of the term Nazi in situations other than those directly related to NSDAP. It is currently a popular trend to blame all WWII crimes on some mysterious Nazis, while at the same time suggesting that there were at the time also Germans and German authorities, somehow different from them. People often write that the Nazis killed XXX people, while at the same time they never write that the Nazi Wehrmacht conquered France in 1940. Get the idea? I simply thought that the term German authorities would be the most neutral, as it would clearly refer to the authorities of the state called Germany.
  2. As to Gypsy/Roma/Romany - I don't really get it where's the problem here. The wiki article on the Gypsies is at Roma people and I changed your link to Romany people solely because it linked nowhere, and because Roma seems to be more widespread than Romany (the latter is more often used to refer to Romany speakers, who are only a part of the entire Roma nation. And sure you are right that Gypsy is not the best word to use.
  3. As to the oath, I mean that they declined to swear loyalty to Hitler, not to swear the Wehrmacht's oath. And AFAIR there were many more oaths, some of them designed for the Wehrmacht, others for civil servants, Waffen SS, SS, Gestapo and so on. As far as I know they declined to swear any of those - and I doubt any of them had a specific name that should be capitalized (though I might be wrong)
  4. Perhaps you're right, in Polish it is a gross stylistic error to repeat things that are already clear from the context and we tend to use synonyms for that. However, I know it's not necessarily so in English as you have a much smaller number of words in use. Perhaps I simply thought that it's clear enough. Feel free to revert that edit of mine and clarify that the transports from Poland included Polish scouts, Polish teachers, Polish professors and Polish people.
  5. NSDAP& the guards: First of all, the Kapos were not former prisoners. They were prisoners just like everyone else, with the difference being that they were given certain privileges in exchange for their service. But they were still imprisoned. Secondly, the NSDAP membership was not that common. In Gusen for instance, at certain point (until early 1945, if memory serves me) roughly half of the guards were Ukrainians, former Soviet soldiers who volunteered for service with Germany. I bet none of them would be admitted to the NSDAP. While the party members constituted some 12% of the entire German nation during the war, it was not obligatory for the camp's administration, not to mention foreign volunteers.
  6. Heavy industry - Well, I might be wrong, but heavy industry seems like quite a common term for a single designate rather than a descriptive term (designate plus description). You don't capitalize other similar terms (forest worker, civil servant, human shield, automotive industry), do you... The Light Brigade is a different thing as it is a proper name, just like a personal name or company's name. So we could have a plethora of light brigades and a single unit referred to as the Light Brigade. But we don't have a single entity called the Heavy Industry.
  7. Bread stealing: work in a quarry was quite common. Stealing bread was not, as it was usually punishable with instant death. The victim, usually a Musulman, was either beaten to death by the kapos, or forced to go to the fences, that is to throw himself on the electrical fence. There is quite a number of stories in any book on the topic mentioning that people who stole bread were beaten by the kapos on a daily basis, until they were so desperate as to go to the fence themselves. However, this was not an administrative measure, it was simply an inner rule. The SS men could write a report and order you a lace for not saluting him properly or for not working hard enough, but they did not care about the bread portions, it was left up to the kapos and the prisoners themselves. Oh, and there were many commands working much harder jobs than those in the quarry, at least after 1943. Among them was the railroad construction, levelling the parade square with a huge stone-made roller, earthworks (digging ditches and trenches, and then transporting the soil to some other place running, beaten by the SS and the kapos every now and then just in case) and so on. Sure, the quarry was hard and symbolic, but it was not a penalty. It was just one of the places. Besides, what would be the sense behind sending a quarry worker to a quarry as a penalty..?
  8. Nit-picking. Sure, I know :) . And I must say it's modern sense is one of the things I miss in Polish.
  9. As to my quote from Irpen's talk page - check the context first, then check the words again.

Cheers, //Halibutt 12:03, 11 May 2006 (UTC)

I don’t appreciate your sarcastic tone when writing about the English language, and your snide comment that it is inferior to Polish. This smacks of linguistic racism, if there is such a thing. I’m sure you will think otherwise, as is your wont.

As for capitals or not:

You know that English is a language that is being changed on a daily basis (sorry, I’ve just used the word language for the second time) and mostly by people who are not native speakers. That’s progress, of course, but it should have an anchor somewhere, before it runs away into e-mail/text message speak. im sure u know wot i meen. You will probably disagree, but that is your choice, as always.

I only have a few questions, which you don’t need to answer. You are probably the only person in the world that does not like the term "Nazis". How many learned scholars would disagree with you? But there again, you’re right, and that’s what counts, isn’t it? What do you really think about Germans? Should they always be responsible for the crimes of the past? I have a disturbing feeling that there is something deeper going on here, and it has nothing to do with historical accuracy.

Anyway... It seems quite clear that you consider this page to be yours, and yours alone. So be it. I will pop in occasionally to have a quick read-through and to spot how many times you make inane mistakes in a language (bugger, I did it again) that should be easy to master, considering how basic it is.

Have a nice life.

andreasegde 12:59, 11 May 2006 (UTC)

Andrea, stop right there! I was not being sarcastic about English, it is a great language. I was merely trying to explain that the reason behind my changes was primarily associated with proper style in Polish rather than English (and noted that I might be wrong with that!). And it is a fact that in English people use less word on a daily basis than they do in Polish. We simply have to use synonyms, while this is not obligatory in English. What in English is called to eat, in Polish could be jeść, chapać, szamać, spożywać, przegryźć, przetrącić, przełknąć, wsunąć, żreć, wcinać, opchnąć, opędzlować, uraczyć się, pożywiać, stołować się, posilać się, konsumować, wtrajać and perhaps a hundred other synonyms... Nothing to do with any kind of racism and I'm sorry you understood it that way. (I wouldn't be learning English if I really was a language racist, would I).
There's a plethora of people who use the term Nazi as a synonym to Germans, while others use it as a synonym to NSDAP members. Yet others use it to refer to those Germans who committed crimes during WWII. I simply thought that it's better to use unambiguous term German authorities rather than Nazis, as it is much more specific. What's wrong with my reasoning?
What does my opinion about modern Germans have to do with this article? I will answer your question, though I feel that it has nothing to do with what we discussed above. Germans are people who live their life to the west of where I live. Their ancestors did some nasty things, for which they pay currently - and will probably pay in the future, both in terms of money paid to the victims and in terms of moral trauma their society suffers from. The WWII crimes are also part of their culture, just like they're a part of culture of any nation that's been subjugated by Germany in that period. Should the WWII criminals be always responsible for what they did during WWII? Yes. Should modern Germans be responsible for what they did during their lifetimes? Yes. Should all people in the world be held responsible for what they do? Yes again. I fail to understand how is that related to the article though.
As to the article - it is neither mine nor yours. It's ours. We're both allowed to be bold and update the article, correcting mistakes and adding new facts to it. When you (or anybody else) correct my mistakes it's perfectly fine. It's also perfectly fine if I correct yours. However, wiki world is no perfect and at times people disagree - and that's when the talk page is used. I disagreed with some of your changes, while agreed with most of them. Just like you apparently disagree with some of my recent corrections. Why not state it here rather than going emotional? Stay cool and continue your great work here; we've prepared a great article together and there's huge chance it gets promoted to featured status, as one of the best articles in Wikipedia. What's wrong with that? //Halibutt 08:11, 12 May 2006 (UTC)

Both of you should sit down over a cup of tea. Andreasegde, please understand that most editors here mean well, and I have known Halibutt long enough to know that none of his comments were personal attacks, and that he is assuming good faith. So should you. Take care,--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 16:03, 12 May 2006 (UTC)

I wrote a very, very nice friendly reply - to Halibutt - but it seems to have gone missing, somehow... Hmmm...

Is Halibut an 'Editor'? I didn´t know that. Sorry Halibutt, but you didn´t tell me. (Please... don´t be offended - seriously) andreasegde 00:40, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm an editor just like you here :D - that is we're both people who edit articles (hit edit this page, type and then alt+s), not in the sense of some privileges or posts :) I'm an editor at my work though. //Halibutt 05:56, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

OK, so I’m an editor/Editor as well. Nice one. (I’m having a cup of tea at the moment…) I have decided to be more concise in the future, if that is possible (laugh…)

1. There is a ´Death Toll´ list on the page that is only about Gusen I, II, and III. It should also include Mauthausen, because of the name of this page...

2. The only photos shown are biased. It looks like every single prisoner in the camp was permanently half-naked/naked. There are other photos that show prisoners that are fully-clothed. See "Liberation of Mauthausen" photos.

3. There is a photo on the Web – easily found - that shows an American soldier talking through a fence to women & children in Mauthausen after the liberation. There is also a photo - also easily found - of a group of women in Mauthausen. I think that they should be shown in the “Women & Children” section. At the moment there is only a photograph of men that were in Ebensee, and an "in memory of" photo.

4. I have read (from a prisoner who was actually there) that there were workshops in the Mauthausen camp, meaning that there was other enforced-work there apart from the quarry. They should be included.

I have no idea if my suggestions will be implemented, but my cup of tea is being digested (laugh…) The ball is now in your court, as they say.

andreasegde 09:28, 13 May 2006 (UTC)

  1. Sure, the problem is I can't find it anywhere on the web. Most of the books I've read on the topic were written by Polish authors, many of whom were former inmates themselves. That's why they're written primarily from the Polish perspective - and you probably know that almost all Poles were transferred to Gusen at certain point in time. Even the monograph by Dobosiewicz is focused primarily on Gusen I, II and III camps, and does not quote the death toll for Mauthausen at all. Feel free to add the info as soon as you find it.
  2. I'm not sure what's biased about it, the liberation took place in May, and a particularly hot one. That's why many of the liberation-time photos show them half-naked. On the other hand feel free to add more photos should you find some decent ones in Public Domain (we can't use all photos from the web)
  3. See above
  4. Much of the section on M-G as a business enterprise focuses on those, I'm not sure what's missing. Of course, like any other major firm, the camps did also have people working in the kitchens, in the stone mill (preparing gravel from the stone excavated in the quarries), in the chancelleries and so on. However, as far as I can tell all major workshops are already mentioned. //Halibutt 18:00, 14 May 2006 (UTC)

Editing

1. This page is called "Mauthausen", and not, "Mauthausen and its sub-camps". Maybe it should be changed?

2. The photos are all of men. This is sexist. There were women and children there too. There are (two) photos available. I believe (POV) that the photos on the page were taken of men that were in the "Krankenlager".

3. What is disturbing is that there is a photo of men from the Ebensee camp that is in the "Women & Children" section of Mauthausen. This is confusing.

4. Historical accuracy is paramount.

andreasegde 19:03, 14 May 2006 (UTC)

  1. Nope, this article is called Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp, as this is the translation of the original name of KL Mauthausen-Gusen. It indeed should be expanded with some info on the sub-camp of Mauthausen itself, but why exactly should we rename it? And if so then to what title?
  2. As I said, if you can find some public domain (or otherwise usable by our Wiki) photos please add them. However, I don't think that lack of pictures of women is a matter of sexism. They formed but a slight minority of the inmates, while men were a huge majority.
  3. Sure, feel free to move it elsewhere.
  4. Indeed. //Halibutt 10:58, 15 May 2006 (UTC)
BTW, I sent an email to the Mauthausen Memorial asking if they would be kind enough to provide us with some PD photos. //Halibutt 14:19, 18 May 2006 (UTC)

Camps

"some info on the sub-camp of Mauthausen itself". Mauthausen was the main camp, and not a sub-camp.

You not only include Gusen, but Melk and Ebensee. Should it be called Mauthausen-Gusen-Melk & Ebensee? Way too complicated.

I think you should split it between Mauthausen and write a separate section about its sub-camps. At the moment it bounces around all over the place like an uncontrollable ball. It´s extremely confusing.

Ask someone who does not know about it to read it, and then ask them what they gained by reading it. I did that, and the answer was not positive. I did this without bias... It´s a marvellous piece, but it needs to be radically edited and clarified.

andreasegde 23:11, 15 May 2006 (UTC)

  1. Mauthausen was the main sub-camp of the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp complex. At the same time the main camp's chancellery was located there. However, the place where the prisoners were kept in Mauthausen had a status of a sub-camp, just like Gusen I, Gusen II, Ebensee, Melk, Linz I, and many others. I thought it is clear from the current version of the article. However, the name of the camp complex was first KZ (or KL) Mauthausen, and then KZ Mauthausen-Gusen, regardless of the actual number of sub-camps administered by the main chancellery in Mauthausen. They did not change the name in order to include all 50+ sub camps, why should we?
  2. Split what? I'm not sure I get your idea... Currently the two main sub-camps (actually 4 as Gusen is further divided onto Gusen I, II and III) have their own, dedicated sub-sections in the article. What is it that you propose to change?
  3. Just tell me what you find missing and I'll try to do my best - or be bold yourself. As can be seen at the top of this page, I already asked for a peer review and fixed a plethora of things some uninformed readers found confusing or missing. This included fixing a huge number of topics covered by Renata's Peer-Review to-do list, some of them are still pending or waiting for further clarification, other matters were already fixed. Be specific and I'm sure it'd be easier to get your idea //Halibutt 00:37, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

1. If Mauthausen was the main sub-camp, what was the main camp? There had to be one. You can not have main sub-camps of sub-camps. It´s illogical, and confusing.

2. Mauthausen was the first to be built, and the other camps were/are referred to as annexed, or sub-camps of it.

3. Mauthausen and Gusen were not geographically connected; they are five kilometres apart.

Vienna is not the main sub-city of other Austrian cities, it´s the capital city.

andreasegde 17:27, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

  1. The camp is the entire Mauthausen-Gusen complex, with all of its sub-camps. At times the camp is used to refer to only the four main sub-camps (Mauthausen, Gusen I, Gusen II and Gusen III), but the more prominent way (and more often found is books) is to refer to the camp as to the whole complex, with all of its sub-camps. As such, the Mauthausen sub-camp was as subordinate to the chancellery as the camps at Gusen II, Ebensee or any other.
  2. Depends on the book. In most books I have the Mauthausen itself is also referred to as a sub-camp, for the sake of consistency I guess. There is quite a reason behind that: unlike in many other cases (Auschwitz comes to mind), the Mauthausen-Gusen complex did not have a single main camp, at least not throughout most of its existence. The chancellery was at Mauthausen, while the biggest camp was at Gusen.
  3. Yes. And..?
  4. And Mauthausen's chancellery was above all the sub-camps, including the one at Mauthausen, just next to the chancellery. I understand your objections, but we simply had to adopt one of the ways to refer to the camps. I (perhaps too arbitrarily) chose to follow the rule found in most books on the topic. However, we could as well follow the original German naming scheme. However, the latter option would be quite hard for most readers to comprehend, as in their naming scheme even the Mauthausen camp itself was composed of three or four sub-sub-camps. //Halibutt 21:10, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

On the Mauthausen page it distinctly says that it was the main camp. Are they wrong? The camps were all controlled by Himmler - albeit not on a day-to-day basis. The orders came from him. Does it mean that Dachau (or one of the others in Nazi-Germany) were all sub-camps?

I think that you are diluting the horrible truth of it all. There were lots of camps in Austria. Putting them all together gives the impression that it had just one big camp complex. You should look at the map on the Mauthausen page and see just how many there were. If you included them all on this page it would take hours to read. "Links", anyone?

andreasegde 22:23, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

  1. Yes, Mauthausen was the main sub-camp of the entire complex in that it was there that the chancellery was located, it was there that most reports were sent and so on. However, I've already explained that in this article we're calling all places where the inmates were held mostly for consistency. You could even say that Mauthausen (camp) was a sub-camp of Mauthausen (chancellery).
  2. Because it was one big camp complex. I'm not sure what is it that you mean here, but the fact is that all the camps in Austria, even the temporary Aussenlagers, were subordinate to either Dachau (a slight minority) or to Mauthausen-Gusen[6]. Check the list of sub-camps of Mauthausen, currently our wiki list is probably the most extensive list over the net.
  3. There already is a List of subcamps of Mauthausen, just take a look at it. And of course it is linked from this article, so I don't really get what is it that you see wrong here. //Halibutt 09:05, 18 May 2006 (UTC)

I have just looked at "The List of Sub-camps" that you also worked on in Wikipedia. The map is also there. Well done! But... If you put Melk and Ebensee as part of the Mauthausen-Gusen complex, then you have to put all of them in there, otherwise nobody will know that they existed. (I will not copy the whole list, as you know how many, and it would waste space.)

OK, what about this?... Limit the page to the Mauthausen-Gusen ´complex´, and link to a completely new page about all of the smaller sub-camps in the whole of Austria. That would take some time, but it is vitally important. At the moment one has the impression that there were only a few camps - albeit a "complex". Ebensee and Melk were much further away than the Linz camp, for example.

If we ignore/forget/overlook the fact there were so many camps in Nazi-Austria, we are not seeing the whole picture. Think of it as a person would that has never been to Austria, and has no idea where it is, or how big/small it is. "Take a step back", as they say...

andreasegde 12:35, 18 May 2006 (UTC)

I'm not sure I can agree with you. The intro of this article says it all, including the fact that M-G was but a centre of a large complex. The link to other sub-camps is also there, in the header itself. I agree that copying the entire list from List of subcamps of Mauthausen here would have little sense - and that's precisely why the list is in a separate article. This article mentions the largest of the sub-camps already and directs the interested readers to a full list. I'm not sure what else could be done. Of course, with time some people could start separate articles on all of the sub-camps, including even the smallest ones (St. Aegyd am Neuwalde with 300 prisoners at most comes to mind), but even then the articles on all of the sub-camps would be but sub-articles of this one. After all neither the situation of inmates nor the scheme behind the sub-camps of this complex differed significantly. What differed were the companies to use their labour and the facilities available to each of the "Aussenlagern", but this is already mentioned in this article as well.
All in all, this article is already limited to the Mauthausen-Gusen complex. Perhaps one day someone could create articles on separate sub-camps (Gusen III concentration camp, Melk concentration camp and so on), with details on their operation, geographical location and so on), but this article is general in scope and I believe it should stay that way. If, after reading the header of this article, where it's specifically said that Mauthausen (...) grew to become a large group of Nazi concentration camps that were built close to the small villages of Mauthausen and Gusen, that initially it consisted of a single camp, it was expanded to become one of the largest labour camp complexes in German-occupied Europe, that apart from the four main sub-camps at Mauthausen and nearby Gusen, more than 50 sub-camps in all parts of Austria and southern Germany used the inmates as slave labour and that several subordinate camps of the KZ Mauthausen complex included munitions factories, quarries, mines, arms factories and Me 262 fighter-plane assembly plants, there still are people to get an impression that there were only a few camps, then I'm afraid there's little we could do about it. Even writing an article on each and every of the 100 or so sub-camps would not make them change their mind, as it is hard to change the mind of someone who... does not read our articles.
As for the whole picture - we might indeed want to start an article on German concentration camps in Austria[7], where we would list all the camps, including those subordinate to Mauthausen-Gusen, those subordinate to Dachau and finally those subordinate directly to the SS. However, this is outside of the scope of this article.
Speaking of which: the purpose of this article is to help an uninformed reader find an answer to a simple question: "what was Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp?". The response to that question is already there. If the reader asked "How many camps were there in Austria", we'd prepare an article on German concentration camps in Austria. If he asked "Is Austria big or small?", then we have a link here to the article on Austria. If he asked "What happened in Austria during the war", then we have a link to History of Austria and a similar category. //Halibutt 14:17, 18 May 2006 (UTC)

Intro problems:

  1. “a large group of Nazi concentration camps that were built close to the small villages of Mauthausen and Gusen” They were not a large group of camps. There were two. Yes, I know that Gusen had I, II, & III. But it was still called Gusen. Are you saying that Melk and Ebensee were built close to Mauthausen?
  2. “122,766 and 320,000 for the entire complex”Is this for Mauthausen-Gusen, or the whole of the sub-camps? It´s not clear.
  3. “The camps formed one of the first massive concentration camp complexes in Nazi Germany” A “complex” is singular. Nazi-occupied Austria, maybe?
  4. “and were the last ones to be liberated by the Allies” Mauthausen was the last.
  5. “was the infamous "Stairway of Death".” Too early in the article. It should come later - in connection with the quarry. What about the Gusen quarry? andreasegde 00:25, 19 May 2006 (UTC)
  1. Someone must've changed that, indeed that was wrong, I corrected that back. Hope it's all right now. On the other hand Austria is not that big and it's only 250 kilometres from the furthest camps (Schoenbrunn-Lambach on the East-West axis).
  2. Should be even more clear now, hopefully
  3. That's not what is said in the header currently... Anyway, although you're obviously wrong that complex has no plural, perhaps the word system would be better? If memory serves me it was the word used prior to all the copy-edits. Oh, and it was the largest in Austria (one of two, actually) and one of the largest in Europe (which is what is said in the header)
  4. Yes and no... it's not that simple. Almost all of the Mauthausen-Gusen system of camps were liberated on May 5 and May 6. However, the last one of them (Loibl Pass I and II) were not liberated until May 8. At the same time there also was the semi-organized net of camps for Hungarian Jews along the modern eastern borders of Austria. These were related to Mauthausen-Gusen, but were not directly subordinate and formed a separate system, as all of them were focused on construction of fortifications. Anyway, all of these were liberated between May 7 and May 10 (sic!), so these would be the last camps - but they are not always considered to be a separate net of camps... At the same time, neither Mauthausen nor Gusen were the last camps of the Mauthausen-Gusen complex to be liberated. The last camps were, as I already mentioned, the Loibl Pass Nord and Loibl Pass Sud.
  5. Couldn't agree more. I thought it was you to add that part, but apparently it was some anon user. I will move it lower, to where the stairs are described. On the other hand there's still enough room in the header to mention some basic facts. Any ideas as to what could fit there? //Halibutt 01:03, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

"Complex"... (also meaning difficult to understand. Complex, or complex). (I do know that there is plural of complex!...laugh...)

I meant that either it was a Complex (as was written) or "Complexes". Either there was one Complex/a number of interconnected camps, or there were more. A Complex (as I intended to say) has one main controlling office/point, and "Complexes" have many. Sorry that I didn´t make it clearer.

I have the feeling that maybe we could start to work together on this, which would please me greatly. andreasegde 14:15, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

In case you hadn't noticed: we already are working on this together :)
As to specific issues, I'm still not sure what's the fuzz about, but I assume that the problem is that the Polish word kompleks is a partially false friend of the English complex and my native Polish language might be fooling me. In short, the current version with one of the largest labour camp complexes in German-occupied Europe seems fine to me. There was Mauthausen-Gusen, with a single chancellery, a single commander, and a plethora of sub-camps. Thus it was a complex of concentration camps, sometimes also called with other terms, like concentration camp system. At the same time there were other such complexes in German-held Europe. Auschwitz, Dachau, Stutthof, Gross Rosen... All of these formed separate complexes of sub-camps with a main chancellery - and Mauthausen-Gusen was among the biggest of them. //Halibutt 14:59, 19 May 2006 (UTC)

Saying that “Austria is not that big” is an insult to the people who were forced on Death-marches/death marches. Austria has 84,000 km² of land.

This is going around in circles. I am thwarted at every turn, and it is beginning to debilitate me. You are obfuscating, and your superciliousness is burdensome.

I will always believe that a story has a beginning, a middle, and an end, and that there is a clear point to be made. I ask you to read the reviews of “The Da Vinci Code” film to know that you should not throw hundreds of facts at people and expect them to accept them comfortably. It might be history, but it’s still a story.

If we can’t even agree on such simple things then it leaves me no alternative but to pack up my belongings and head for the hills. It’s all yours, pal. Maybe you don’t have a long-suffering girlfriend that has to listen to the chronicles of all this bickering, but I have.

Have fun. Viva Wikipedia.

  1. It was not meant to be an insult. I simply compared it to the size of other states where the Germans set up their camps. Poland was roughly 4,6 times bigger (389 720 km²), Yugoslavia was three times as big (255,804 km²), modern Germany (excluding annexed Polish areas and Austria itself) was 4,3 times that big (357,050 km²) and so on.
  2. I'm sorry, but I simply want to better understand what you mean. If that is burdensome then I'm sorry, but we can't work together on this if such cooperation debilitates you, can we. Cooperation is indeed tiresome, but I believe it's worth the effort.
  3. Sure, I know that perfectly well (editor IRL, remember?). Let me know what's missing and I'm sure we could fix that. However, take note that what we're writing here is an encyclopaedia article, not a newspaper story. We're not telling a story here, we're citing facts for the others to tell the stories if they want. Wikipedia articles are tools for writing newspaper articles rather than articles as such - at least that's how I see the purpose of all encyclopaedias. Anyway, that's a general question, while what you are raising above are in most cases details. In some cases I agree with you, in others I don't. In some cases you've explained your stance, in others you merely pointed out to things I don't get.
  4. Anyway, let's fix the things you raised one by one: was my attempt at explanation of the problem with concentration camp complex good? Is that what you meant to say? Would changing the term to concentration camp system make this article better? //Halibutt 08:47, 20 May 2006 (UTC)
    • ^ Cite error: The named reference Abzug was invoked but never defined (see the help page).