Hamburg – The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s chief Nazi-hunter, Dr. Efraim Zuroff, today attended an important session of the ongoing trial of Stutthof guard Bruno Dey, to hear the testimony of Polish-Jewish Holocaust survivor Halina Strnad, a 93-year old retired medical scientist.
In an extremely clear and cogent testimony, Strnad described in graphic terms the horrific conditions for the Jewish inmates in the Stutthof concentration camp near Gdansk. Arriving there after 3 1/2 years in the Lodz ghetto, from which she was deported to Auschwitz, and a brief stay in that death camp, Strnad and her mother arrived in Stutthof in September 1944. She explained in great detail the trials and tribulations of the Jewish inmates who were housed in a barrack without any bunks, and only a bit of straw on the ground. Without virtually any hygienic facilities and very little food, the inmates suffered from intense hunger and, in many cases, disease. She herself came down with typhus, and her mother died in her arms of the disease.
According to Zuroff:
“If anyone needed any proof of the incredible importance of survivor testimony, even at this late date, Halina Strnad’s extremely lucid, graphic description of the conditions in Stutthof are a clear example of their value. In this case, the irony is that both the survivor and the suspect are the same age, and each appears to be in relatively good health, reinforcing the validity of the prosecution of suspected Nazi war criminals, even when they reach this age.”
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