Not Enough Room In The Camps For The Mass Graves


Holocaust deniers say:

"At Treblinka, Belzec and Sobibor an estimated 1.38 million bodies were allegedly buried . . . The problem is that there isn’t enough burial space in the maps and models for that many bodies."

This assertion is made by an anonymous American Holocaust denier in a short movie on the Operation Reinhard camps.1

How does this denier arrive at his conclusions?

What the denier is missing

The American Holocaust denier video-maker’s assumptions are faulty and they invalidate his conclusions about the space required and the actual size of the graves in the camps.
Let us look at the video-maker’s faulty assumptions one at a time.

1. The calculated mass of each body is not representative of the average size of the victim.

The American Holocaust denier video-maker arrives at the conclusion that about 3 adult male bodies could be buried in one cubic meter. How does he calculate this figure?
Others who attempt the same calculations come up with more realistic figures. Alex Bay, a meticulous scholar of the Operation Reinhard camps, calculates that 10.7 adult male bodies would fit in one cubic meter. Even Carlo Mattogno, an Italian holocaust denier, calculates 8 bodies per cubic meter assuming one-third of them were children.
The most realistic appraisal though comes from Alex Bay, a meticulous researcher of the Operation Reinhard camps, who caculates that 10.7 adult male modies would fit in one cubic meter.
Thus, it is fair to conclude that the video-maker’s calculations do not represent the actual size or mass of the majority of the adult victims in these camps. His calculations are at least double to triple the area needed for the body of a child or infant (which made up about half of the number of total victims.)

Why are the calculations so different?

2. The video-maker misrepresents the way the bodies were thrown into the graves in a way that actually wastes the space that was avaiable.

It is true that we do not have a lot of details about how the bodies were actually buried in the mass graves, but there is some information available:
The key factors seem to be speed and layering the bodies, although not necessarily with the precision claimed by the American Holocaust denier video-maker. The object appears to have been to fill the grave more or less evenly-as opposed to arranging them in neat rows of 12 cubic foot rectangles and covering them with even layers of sand.
Why should the bodies of Jews be treated with any dignity when in life they were literally diseased parasites and vermin. The Germans even forbade the work Jews to use the words "corpse" or "victim." The dead were instead referred to as "Figuren" (puppets, dolls) or "Schmatters" (rags.)8 To Christian Wirth, the director of all three camps, they were simply "garbage" to be disposed of quickly and with the least fuss so the process of killing would not be slowed down. 9

3. The video-maker uses a of the Operation Reinhard camps that is not scaled as to its overall size or distances of objects shown on it.

The maps used by the video-maker are not scaled. They were drawn from the memories of eyewitnesses and are for visualization purposes only. Therefore, any calculations pretending to measure the area of the camp and then cover it with red blobs representing one mass grave multiplied many times can not be scientific.


The American Holocaust denier video-maker’s calculations are deliberately exaggerated to achieve his final goal of "proving" Treblinka, Belzec and Sobibor were transit camps and not death camps. His conclusions are based on faulty assumptions and as a result his conclusions are wrong.


1. See Episode 11 (Treblinka Burial Space), Episode 12 (Belzec Burial Space) and Episode 13 (Sobibor Burial Space) at
2. R&D Ergonomics sells ergonomic rests for computer users which are based on shoulder measurements. An average-framed individual (about 95% of the population) is between 16 and 26 inches. A large-framed rest fits people with very wide shoulders, exceeding 26 inches. See
3. The average stature of male Poles (both Jewish and non-Jewish) was about 5’3", with Jews being, on the average, slightly shorter than Poles. Female Jews were, on the average, shorter yet-around 5’ tall. About 10% of the Jewish population was taller than the average. See www.Jewish, "Stature" at See also "Physical Condition of Jews, "New York Times, June 6, 1904.
4. See "The Reconstruction of Treblinka" by Alex Bay, Appendix D-Ash Disposal and Burial Pits (Continued), Estimating the Capacities of the Burial Pits: Human Body Proportions from DaVinci" at
5. Abraham Krzepicki, "Eighteen Days in Treblinka" in Alexander Donat’s The Death Camp Treblinka: A Documentary (Holocaust Library, 1979), p. 86.
6. Yitzhak Arad, Belzec, Sobibor, Treblinka: The Operation Reinhard Death Camps (Indiana University Press, 1987), p. 104.
7. "Szlamek Bajler, also known as Yakov Grojanowski, Notes on the Chelmno Waldlager, January 1942" at , p. 2/8.
8. Testimony of Motke ZaÏdl and Itzhak Dugin on the digging up and cremation of the bodies in the mass graves at Vilna, Lithuania. Claude Lanzmann, Shoah: The Complete Text of the Acclaimed Holocaust Film (Da Capo Press, 1995), p. 9.
9. Arad, Belzec, Sobibor, Treblinka, p. 183.
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