In Spring of 1940, Himmler had ordered the construction of one of the largest holocaust camps. The concentration camp was situated by Oswiecim, a Polish city, which was thereafter renamed Auschwitz by the Germans. This camp was to hold the Polish prisoners, where they were to work as slave laborers for the German-run factories that were planned to be built nearby. Over the course of the holocaust, 6 million Polish lives had been taken, half of them Jewish.
The holocaust process for the Poles could be divided into stages as seen by the establishments of the ghettos. Before the ghettos were formed, any attempts and escapes from persecution were not necessarily punishable by death. However, once the ghettos were formed, many Poles died from starvation and disease within the confines and destitute holocaust camps.
Their woes were only relieved by the smuggling of food and medicine. The rapid development of Jewish ghettos and holocaust camps across Poland was actually strongly linked with the also instituted, but very secretive centers for killings which were built at around the same period by various German construction companies. Hitler’s Operation Reinhardt, was a plan that involved the creation of German death camps for the sole use of rapidly exterminating Polish Jews in holocaust camps.
South-eastern Poland’s massive Jewish populations enabled the Majdanek camp which became a killing ground through means of gas chambers for the Polish Jews. The gassing was held in view of the other inmates and tractor engines had to be run near the chambers to drown the cries of those dying. The holocaust camp, Majdanek, was where 59,000 Polish Jews were killed, and at the end of Operation Harvest Festival in November of 1943, Majdanek only had 71 Jewish people left.
The operation “Final Solution” required mass transport of the Polish Jews on railways where they died from thirst and suffocation while in transit. This also helped the Nazi lie about “resettling” the Jews. The Gerstein Report on August 18, 1940 documented that the arrival of 45 wagons to the Belzec extermination camp found 1,450 people dead on arrival out of the 6,700 that originally had departed. Millions of people were transported and killed in this way.