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Auschwitz

What an emotional journey is the one to Auschwitz-Birkenau. The camps are maintained in a very authentic manner and you are not allowed to take photos inside any of the huts. The frightening thing - especially about Auschwitz - is how "normal" it is. You could easily imagine it as a very peaceful, middle class housing estate.

Birkenau is just wooden huts so it really looks like a concentration camp

Auschwitz

The initial view as you come from the museum and theatre

The infamous gates - work will make you free

Another view of the gate

So much security for such innocent people

More guard towers and more barbed wire

Can't you imagine in summer, beautiful shady trees and solid, pretty apartments. It was very surreal.

If it weren't for the barbed wire and towers it could be any "nice" apartment complex! Gives you the shivers!

But it wasn't a "nice" apartment complex!

The Wall of Death beside Block 11 (the punishment block), where many prisoners were shot. Thousands of Poles dies here. St Maximilian Kobe died in Block 11, he was starved to death, as many were in Block 11

It remains today as it did then

One of the many guard towers

Ashes from the crematorium

The exterior of the Auschwitz gas chamber - it was very small compared to the Birkenau complex.

Thousands of pairs of glasses taken from prisoners. These are just those that were left - most had already been sent back to Germany for "recycling".

The gallows where Rusolf Hess was executed. He was the Camp Commandant

The gates and main buildings.

Birkenau

From the infamous Railway siding - the entrance to Birkenau. It is about 3 km from Auschwitz. The railway ran right up to the gas chambers that were towards the very rear of the camp.

More barbed wire.

The rail from the gas chambers back to the entrance gate

Very desolate, bitterly cold and forbidding.

The old wooden huts would not have given much protection from the chill here.

The remains of the gas chambers. They were blown up by the Germans before they retreated.

Row upon row of bleak, bare huts

Winter must have been horrendous.

The evocative memorial - just to the right of the gas chambers

The memorial again

The main statuary of theHolocost Memorial

Same thing - different angle

Ever let this place be a cry of dispair and a warning to humanity, where the Nazis murdered about one and a half million men, women and children, mainly Jews from various countries.

  Portrait of the Master??