I paid a visit to both the main Auschwitz and Birkenau camps whilst in Poland in May of this year.
Before i write an account of my impressions of it, i'd like to make two points abundantly clear.
1. I'm not a Nazi.
2. I'm not a Holocaust denier.
I would ask that you keep those very important points in mind before reading this report.
If nothing else i'm a History Geek.
For me History is an ever changing topic. Until a few months ago no one was 100% sure that Richard III had a deformity of his back. Now the facts clearly show that he did. History is about just that: FACTS. And facts are only confirmed by compelling evidence in support of them.
I resent the fact that 'questioning' certain aspects of the Holocaust tends to lead to accusations of being a 'denier'. That is simply not the case. It's not wrong to question Historical evidence but unfortunately the Holocaust is a taboo subject. Any questioner is often labelled unfairly and unjustly as something they are not. How can we ever learn without asking the 'why's' and the 'but's'? If there are certain things you have questions about how can it be wrong in any way, shape or form to ask for answers.
I have my view on the Holocaust and on the 'camps'. Some of the views i hold i'm not entirely comfortable with and one of the reasons i went to Auschwitz was to see if actually being there might change my opinion.
In most cases it didn't. I left with many more questions that i had found answers to which was pretty disappointing on a purely personal level.
(to be continued)