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Early Nazi concentration camp excavated in Berlin

The Columbia Concentration Camp, ran by the Nazis between 1933 and 1936, is undergoing excavation in Berlin.

Columbia served as a training center to teach and perfect new torture methods that would later be employed to run Germany’s huge network of concentration camps around Europe.

“This was not just a place where people were terrorized and tortured, but a school of torture,” Bernbeck added. “The people who had been commanders of Columbia later turned into commanders of other concentration camps – at Buchenwald, at Sachenhausen, at Majdanek, in Auschwitz, so once you had gone through concentration camp Columbia, apparently this was this perverse career step in order to stay in the SS and become a commander elsewhere.”

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Story: Michael Scaturro, The Atlantic | Photo: Free University of Berlin

One thought on “Early Nazi concentration camp excavated in Berlin

  1. Bernbeck was quoted as saying “The Nazis let people out purposefully after short periods of time so that word of how they were treated would spread. It was a way to terrorize opposition groups, to shut them up.” Yet I wonder if the site was mentioned in survivors’ testimonies or in Yad Vashem. How strange that era, so close to our own, was.

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