February 8, 1985
killed Nazis' prisoners, MD says
of prisoners who died at the Bergen
Belsen concentration camp
during World War II weren't deliberately starved to death
but died from a rash of diseases, according to a
psychiatrist who was there in 1945.
Russell William Barton, 61, of Rochester, N.Y.,
said that when he entered the camp on May 2, 1945, he had
heard and believed that prisoners were deliberately
starved to death by the Nazis.
But Barton, who was a medical student volunteer with
the British Red Cross, said if that was true, he couldn't
understand why the camp kitchens were so well
He told a District Court jury yesterday he decided the
stories of vicious German inhumanity weren't true after
he found books, dating back to 1942, itemizing the amount
of food cooked and distributed each day.
The psychiatrist was the second defence witness at the
trial of Ernst Zundel, who has pleaded not guilty
to two counts of publishing statement he knew were false
and likely to incite mischief.
The publication in question are Did Six Million
Really Die? which claims that trhe Nazis had no gas
chambers and Adolf Hitler never plotted to exterminate
the Jews, and The West , War and Islam , which contends
Zionists, Freemasons, communists and bankers are
conspiring to form a world power.
In his pamphlet Did Six Million Really Die?
Zundel, a 46-year-old Carlton St. publisher, has
reprinted part of an article written by Barton. He states
that Barton's recollection of camp conditions is "a
surprisingly honest appraisal of the situation at Belsen
Barton, senior associate psychiatrist and attending
physician at Strong Memorial Hospital, said the appalling
conditions of the camp were likely due to massive
overcrowding and the camp administrator's resentment
because 50,000 prisoners were kept in a camp for
The camp administrator felt it was his responsibility
to look after the 3,000 prisoners, not the 50,000 who had
arrived after the Russian front began to push west, the
Barton said that when he first approached the camp he
could smell decaying corpses and feces.
He and another student were assigned to a hut where
400 people were lying on the floor, some of them dead,
others were feces and vomit smeared on their faces, some
trying to reach for help, the jury was told.
"I was stunned," the doctor said.
The prisoners were suffering from malnutrition,
gaster-interitis, typhus, scurvy and a multitude of other
diseases, he recalled.
He said that, when he tried to give prisoners protein
intravenously, some of them screamed, saying others had
died from injections administered by the Germans.
Intravenous injections were new to medicine at the
time, Barton said, and the deaths were likely caused by
bad reactions to them.
Another defence witness, French professor Robert
Faurisson, said the "gas chambers and the
genocide together was a fraud which led to a gigantic
political and financial fraud."
Israel's former prime minister, David Ben
Gurion, had twisted the arm of former West German
chancellor Konrad Adenauer in order to obtain
reparations payments for the relatives of dead and
missing Jews, Faurisson said.
To get those payments, "Ben Gurion committed an
enormous fraud" in saying 6 millions Jews were murdered,