Dr Robert Jay Lifton THE NAZI DOCTORS:
                        Medical Killing and the
                            Psychology of Genocide ©
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he described hearing them say, upon the arrival of Jewish transports: “For us Poles, Hitler has one good side — he is freeing us from Jews.” Although he knew there to be admirable people in the resistance “from all over Europe,” all the “non-Jewish prisoners were anti-Semitic, … merely with different nuances.”  
Four Medical Collaborators 
It was inevitable that at least a few prisoner doctors would cross the line into what was perceived by other inmates to be active collaboration with the SS. We will examine four of them — three Poles and a German Jew — each identified with a particular form of collaboration: respectively, selections, experimental operations, physical violence, and “Jewish collaboration.” These four patterns of collaboration tell us much. about not only the men themselves but the Nazi doctors who orchestrated the collaboration and the Auschwitz environment where it occurred.

All four of them were men, probably for several reasons the greater number of male prisoner doctors, the greater authority given them in general, and perhaps the greater capacity of women doctors — as women — to adapt flexibly to Auschwitz and, specifically, to SS doctors without succumbing (or at least doing so less extremely and less frequently) to the lure of a “power position” in the Auschwitz hierarchy. 
Performing Selections: Adam T.
Adam T. was the only one of the four medical collaborators still alive. I found him not in Poland but in Germany, where he had been living since the end of the war, having even Germanized his last name. Dr. Jacob R. echoed other prisoner doctors in describing him as “an opportunist … and anti-Semite” — a judgment R. somewhat qualified by adding, “All of us preferred to help ours [our own people].” Dr. Peter D. also considered Adam T. anti-Semitic as well as “overzealous,” a man who “wanted to be on the good side of the [SS] doctor because he had a better chance [that way] as a Christian of getting out of the camp.” But Dr. D. added, “With me he was very nice.” A non-Jewish former inmate able to observe him closely placed Adam T. among those prisoner doctors “who selected more people than even the SS doctors would have.” And the nonmedical scientist also a close observer, summed the matter up “Adam T. was a rabid anti-Semitic Polish nationalist with an evil temper. He was quick to rouse. He could swing from cruelty to kindness. He could go either way. He was unpredictable.”

Having been received by most survivors in tones of warm colleagueship and sympathy with my work, I was struck by Adam T.’s discomfort about meeting me (“Well, that all happened so long ago. I don’t like to talk  
Medical Killing and the
Psychology of Genocide

Robert J. Lifton
ISBN 0-465-09094
© 1986
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