Bendel, Charles S.

Charles S. Bendel
Charles S. Bendel

Charles S. Bendel (born 1904) was deported to Auschwitz-Monowitz in late 1943. But he was transferred to Birkenau on 2 June 1944, where he was assigned to serve as a physician for the so-called “Sonderkommando” of the crematoria. He remained there until the evacuation from the camp in January 1945. After the war, Dr. Bendel recorded at least six different testimonies on his alleged experiences in Auschwitz, all of which are riddled with implausibilities and outright lies. The most-extraordinary fact is that both Bendel and another Auschwitz inmate-physician, the Hungarian Jew Miklos Nyiszli, claimed independently from each other to have been the only Sonderkommando physician at the same location and during the same time span, and that they lived in the crematoria at Birkenau for the identical period of their stay at Birkenau. They were both chosen by, and worked under, the ineluctable Dr. Josef Mengele. Similarly, both claimed to be the only surviving Sonderkommando physician! But they were mutually unaware of each other’s existence, described incorrect places, and offered mutually contradictory factual assertions.

Of the Birkenau crematoria, where he says he worked for many months, Bendel spread the following false claims:

  • That thousands of inmates who worked on constructing these facilities (from the summer of 1942 through late spring 1943) died building them; no other witness has asserted that, there is no record of it happening, and Bendel wasn’t even there when this supposedly happened.
  • That Himmler personally attended the inauguration of the first completed crematorium in Birkenau in late January 1943 – when Bendel wasn’t yet in Auschwitz – although Himmler’s last visit to Auschwitz occurred in July of 1942.
  • Bendel lifted wildly exaggerated claims about these facilities’ cremation capacities straight from the War Refugee Board Report (claims by Alfred Wetzler and Rudolf Vrba).
  • He repeated the absurd story of flames shooting “up to ten meters” out of crematory chimneys.
  • He repeated the tall tale that fat, extracted from burning corpses on huge pyres, was collected with special conduits, leading to puddles of searing fat where some inmate “burned both his feet.”
  • That the cremation furnaces, being insufficient, were allegedly shut down and replaced by open-air incineration pits that could allegedly cremate 1,000 people per hour – a physical impossibility.
  • In contrast to the mainstream narrative, which claims one homicidal gas chamber each for Crematoria II and III in Birkenau, Bendel insisted that each building had two such chambers, each with a capacity of 1,000 persons.
  • Although he claims to have worked near these facilities for many months, Bendel got the size of these rooms terribly wrong, claiming that they measured only 10 m × 4 m or 10 m × 5 m, with an absurdly low height of only 1.5 m (too low for most people to even stand up). By contrast, orthodoxy claims that the gas chambers measured 30 m × 7 m, and were some 2.4 m high. The varied dimensions of the presumed four gas chambers inside Crematoria IV and V were just as incompatible with those asserted by Bendel. Moreover, squeezing 1,000 people into a room of barely 40 or 50 square meters, resulting in a packing density of 20 to 25 people per m², would have been an impossible feat.
  • Without possible personal knowledge, Bendel parroted the Soviet propaganda figure of “more than four million” Auschwitz victims, 800,000-1,000,000 of which allegedly died during his stay at the camp.

This is only the tip of the iceberg of a much longer list of Bendel’s lies and exaggeration. (For more details, see Mattogno 2020a, pp. 304-333.)

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