Saturday, February 05, 2011

5 February 1945

It was on this date in 1945 that Heinrich Himmler, in return for five million Swiss Francs (U.S. $1,250,000) paid by Jewish organizations operating in Switzerland, allowed 1200 Jewish prisoners of Terezin (Theresienstadt) to be transported to safety in Switzerland.

One Himmler motive: by allowing a few hundred Jewish prisoners to leave with their lives, he hoped to dispel the widespread notion in the rest of Europe that Jewish persons were being exterminated in Reich-occupied territories.

Himmler’s operating assumption was non-operative.

The photograph below depicts the arrival of a train transport at Terezin in 1943.

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