Dr Robert Jay Lifton THE NAZI DOCTORS:
                        Medical Killing and the
                            Psychology of Genocide ©
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Prisoner Doctors: Collaboration with Nazi Doctors  
[doc…] tors, and even more so that of the surgical victims, was overwhelming and decisive. The verdict was technically for Dering as plaintiff because of the inaccuracies in Uris’s novel concerning the number of operations* and the use of anesthesia. But, in the British manner, the award was “one ha’penny” — a severe moral condemnation of Dering. Not long after the trial, he became ill and died.7

But, in terms of Dering’s overall behavior in camp, Jacob R., as a Jewish prisoner doctor, made a simple, accurate observation: “Early in 1943, he was still very subservient. He was a servile Häftling ["prisoner"]. But ... he changed: he became more of a comrade with the SS doctors.”

Thus, Dering moved from terror to servility to identification with the Auschwitz environment and especially with medicalized power over life and death — a passage for the most part available only to non-Jews, especially so if they were strong anti-Semites, and still more so if ethnic Germans. 
Physical Violence and “Evil for Evil's Sake”: Zenon Zenkteller 
Zenon Zenkteller was a Polish prisoner doctor who became notorious for physically abusing Jewish prisoner doctors working under him. The only one of this group legally prosecuted after the war, he was convicted and imprisoned.

Alexander O., a Jewish doctor who had to work under Dr. Zenkteller made clear that “there was never any colleagueship” and that “he was an enemy, a congenital enemy,” and went on to say, with appropriately mordant humor:  
Some … like insects. I like cacti ... He [liked] to beat …. Dr. A. lived — I will use the German expression — wie Gott in Frankreich [“like God in France”], but he urinated every hour. We [a group of doctors made to do strenuous manual labor] were kneeling down or sitting down because we could no longer stand, famished and weak as we were .... He would go out and urinate on the wall of the block, usually on the left side .... He would urinate outside because, every time he would go out, we were busy working, seated or on our knees, and we would be kicked in the backside. Going and coming back from urinating, he would distribute his kicks. But those who were a bit out of his way did not get kicks because he did not go out of his way. He would only take two or three steps to kick. Otherwise, the others would, only get such compliments as “Asshole!, Shitpig!” . . . I never saw Zenkteller go and urinate without kicking the backsides of those he could reach.
* The total of 17,000 used in the novel apparently stemmed from a prisoner doctor who had heard Dering boast of having performed that number of operations in Auschwitz, most of them not related to experimental sterilization. We may surmise, then, that the extremely incorrect number derived both from Dering’s boast and from an Auschwitz environment so extreme that within it any number of harmful acts, murders, or criminal operations seemed plausible.   
Medical Killing and the
Psychology of Genocide

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