Operation Höss or Aktion Höss was the codename for the mass deportation of Hungarian Jews and their murder in the gas chambers of Birkenau extermination camp. Between 14 May and 9 July 1944, 420,000 Jews were sent to Auschwitz from Hungary, or about 12,000 per day. On arrival some twenty-five percent were selected for forced labour while the remainder were immediately gassed. The name of this atrocity came from Rudolf Höss, who returned as the commandant of Auschwitz to increase the killing capacity and ensure the smooth running of the operation. The specially built railway line into Birkenau from Auschwitz made transports to the camp more efficient enabling the SS to increase the daily killing capacity. After the war, SS Adolf Eichmann, who had organized the deportations from Hungary, boasted that Operation Höss was an achievement never matched before or since.
This shocking book tells the story of this inhuman venture from its conception and planning, and though to the bitter, tragic end.
I really enjoy the books in this series and this one was no different.
I do think that the images in this series tell a lot, the limited captions work very well to give a brief overview of who is who and what was going on in the picture chosen.
This book is similar to the author’s other books in this series I have read and I enjoy the insights that he gives. The book is well written and the writing is concise and the introduction to each chapter covers everything needed.
The chapters are well laid out and in this one there are less graphic images than in some of the other books. You see the arrival of those going to the camps, but knowing the outcomes and doesn’t make the book any less horrifying to read when you look at the ages of those that you know were in the queue that wouldn’t make it.
It is 5 stars from me for this one – a great addition to books on WWII – very highly recommended!