The Aktion Reinhard death camp was located near the village and railway station of Sobibor in the eastern section of the Lublin district in Poland. The camp was constructed in March 1942 after the extermination operations had already begun in Belzec. Under camp commandant Franz Stangl, the gassing of Jews by carbon monoxide commenced in May 1942. Stangl, like many of the operatives in the Belzec camp, came to Sobibor experienced in killing with gas because of his participation in Germany’s Euthanasia Program. Unlike Belzec, there was no barracks for the arrivals once they disembarked from the trains. Rather, the undressing took place in the railway square under the watchful eyes of the Ukrainian guards. In order to avoid panic, the victims were told upon arrival that following their baths, they would have their possessions returned to them and be sent to Ukraine, where they would be able to live and work. The sick and the infirm were told that they would be taken to the infirmary, but instead were taken to open ditches and shot. At the “Cash Office,” Jews were required to “deposit” their money and valuables, and were warned that they would be shot should they attempt to hide anything. The entire process, from their arrival at the camp to entry into the gas chamber, was often accompanied by beatings administered by German and Ukrainian guards. Jews were humiliated even more by a dog called Barry, which Schutzstaffel (SS) men had trained to bite, especially when the victims were naked. The humiliation was, however, calculated. The beatings, the dog’s bites, and the screaming guards had the effect of forcing the Jews to escape these indignities by running through a tube that led to the “baths” where they were gassed. Fewer convoys of Jews arrived at Sobibor than at Belzec, and their size rarely exceeded 20 freight cars with a total of 2,000 to 2,500 people. By September 1942, there was additional construction at the camp that resulted in a new building containing six gas chambers, which increased the extermination capacity to 1,200 to 1,300 people a day. In July 1943, Heinrich Himmler ordered that Sobibor be converted to a concentration camp in order to store and process captured munitions. Before the conversion took place, however, a revolt of Jewish prisoners broke out in the camp on 17 October 1943. Despite the odds against a successful revolt, a number of prisoners managed to escape, and their accounts remain the most detailed sources that we have about Sobibor. The number of Jews exterminated in Sobibor range from a low estimate of 225,000 to a high of 250,000.
   See also Resistance.

Historical dictionary of the Holocaust. . 2014.

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  • SOBIBOR — (Sobibór), one of the six Nazi death camps situated in German occupied Poland, three miles west of the Bug River and five miles south of Wlodawa in the General Gouvernment. It was situated in a wooded area near a small village by the same name in …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Sobibór —   [sɔ bibur], Dorf in Polen, in der Woiwodschaft Cholm, am Bug, der hier die Grenze zur Ukraine bildet. Im Zweiten Weltkrieg bestand hier das nationalsozialistische Vernichtungslager Sobibór, in dem ab Mai 1942 um 250 000 Personen, v. a. Juden… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Sobibor — ▪ Nazi extermination camp, Poland Polish  Sobibór        Nazi (Nazi Party) German extermination camp located in a forest near the village of Sobibór in the present day Polish province of Lublin. Built in March 1942, it operated from May 1942… …   Universalium

  • Sobibór — Infobox Settlement name = Sobibór settlement type = Village total type = image shield = subdivision type = Country subdivision name = POL subdivision type1 = Voivodeship subdivision name1 = Lublin subdivision type2 = County subdivision name2 =… …   Wikipedia

  • Sobibor — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Sobibór, une ville de l est de la Pologne Camp d extermination de Sobibor, camp d extermination nazi, situé près de la ville ci dessus. Sobibor, 14… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sobibor — n. World War II Nazi death camp that was located in eastern Poland …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Sobibor extermination camp — Sobibor redirects here. For the nearby town, see Sobibór. Sobibor Extermination camp Nazi extermination camps in occupied Poland (marked with black and white skulls) …   Wikipedia

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