*Oh, there is starvation in Auschwitz,
We have nothing at all to eat,
Mother, not even a piece of bread,
Those starving us are bad karma.
Oh, if I only had a pitchfork
I would kill the tormentors
If I only had a pitchfork.
I would kill the people starving us.*
Oshwitsate - Ruzena Danielova
There used to be a Romani camp at Auschwitz. At one point it held up to 16,000 people but epidemics, starvation and the Nazi’s brutal treatment got that number down.
For various reasons the Nazis decided the camp and its inhabitants should be destroyed. In May, 1944 this plan swung into action and the SS moved in. But, as the SS surrounded the camp, they were met by brave and desperate resistance from Roma and Sinti who had armed themselves with whatever came to hand.
The SS retreated, the destruction was postponed.
Over the course of the next few months, those Roma and Sinti who were fit enough for work were moved to other camps.
The night of August 2nd-3rd, 1944 was Zigeunernacht - “Gypsy night” - and the remaining Roma and Sinti inhabitants of the camp were rounded up and sent to the gas chambers. Dr Josef Mengele himself helped supervise arrangements for the transportation, he hunted for any children who were hiding and even took a group of them to the chambers in his own car.
There was - once again - brave resistance though, as one Polish survivor says;
About 3,000 men, women and children were sent to the gas chambers and cremated in a single night.
The Romani camp was gone and nothing was left of the inhabitants but ashes.
Travel well, my friends - my brothers and my sisters.