friedrichjansson wrote: Roberto wrote:
friedrichjansson wrote:So, Roberto (or any other exterminationist who wants to answer): what V-8, water-cooled Russian engine of more than 200 HP did Fuchs install at Sobibor?
No idea, and assuming the witness was mistaken about the provenance of the engine and/or didn't recall certain particulars correctly: so what?
It would mean, of course, that your beloved star witness Fuchs testified falsely, and therefore is not a particularly reliable witness.
"Beloved star witness"? Try to do yourself the favor of refraining from such notorious displays of idiocy.
friedrichjansson wrote:The story doesn't end here, though. Perhaps the prosecutors (who generally shape the confessions in this kind of case; see the Frontline program "The Confessions") figured out that the Russians didn't use V-8s, because by 1965 Fuchs was telling a different story.
Outside "Frontline" programs and your conspiracy theories, prosecutors don't usually "shape" confessions, at least not in the German Federal Republic. Why on earth (assuming they were so inclined) should prosecutors at the Hagen trial
have "shaped" a defendant's description of a gassing engine, by the way? Are they supposed to have looked into the future and been concerned that FJ would make a fuss about a Russian V8?
The engine was no longer a V-8, but an inline 4. Fuchs no longer mentioned the power of the engine, and no longer knew whether it was air or water cooled.
He may have considered a vaguer description more convenient as it pointed to less involvement on his part. Or then his memory had deteriorated since. Or then more than one type of engine was used. Or then a different engine was used at a different time, and at the trial he recalled the engine used at that other time. Note that he said that "in his opinion" ("meines Erachtens") the motor in question had been a Russian motor, meaning he was not sure about the motor's provenance. Another defendant thought the motor had been a Renault motor, with some different features, which again points to the possibility of different motors being used at different times. What all operators agreed upon, however, was that the motor(s) used at Sobibór had been (a) gasoline motor(s).
friedrichjansson wrote:Since I haven't read all the trial records I can't exclude the possibility that this was supposed to be a different engine from the (totally imaginary) one he said he installed,
"Totally imaginary" is nonsense. Even if there had been no Russian 8 cylinder V-motors at the time, as FJ claims, the likely explanation would be that Fuchs was simply wrong about the "Russian" provenance of the motor. As his statement in court suggests, he wasn't sure about the "Russian" provenance of the motor he described on that occasion.
friedrichjansson wrote:but in that case we would have the bizarre circumstance that while they made a point of expanding the gas chambers, they also decided mid-operation to use a smaller engine
Or an additional engine, and the use of a single smaller engine, if that was the case, could be explained by the former engine's having broken down and no equal substitute being found. Smaller engine also meant less gasoline expenditure, I guess. It may be that a bigger engine was used initially and later replaced by a smaller engine for fuel economy reasons, after it was realized that with a gas chamber packed full (the V8 had been used at a test gassing of 40 women or so, IIRC) the desired result could also be achieved with a smaller engine.
friedrichjansson wrote: - which is also hard to square with the Sobibor witnesses' description of a 15-minute gassing time.
What witnesses exactly did you have in mind, and what would it matter if they got the timing wrong? As there were no survivors from the "death camp" sector at Sobibór, direct witnesses to gassing can be only SS or Trawniki witnesses, who may have stated a killing time shorter than the actual one for self-serving reasons. And one generally shouldn't put much stock in what witnesses say about the duration of an event. It's the detail that witnesses are likeliest to be mistaken about, according to the findings of forensic psychology.
friedrichjansson wrote:If the story is that there was only a single Sobibor gassing engine, then Fuchs has contradicted himself in spectacular fashion. A genuine witness who worked on an engine and operated it for months would not be confused about whether it was a V-8 or an inline 4. That's an extremely visible difference - look at pictures of these types of engines if you aren't already familiar with this fact. Fuchs was enough of a mechanic to repair the valves of the engine, so he was familiar with engines, and would not have made such a mistake.
Which would make the possibility of several engines, or of one engine being replaced by another, more likely. Or Fuchs' having operated engines at different places and on different occasions, and the V8 engine actually having been an engine used at a trial run somewhere other than at Sobibór.