By David Anderson
The skeletons sat in the sun with no faces, yellowish, stubby skin stretched across bone, jawbones seemingly cutting through, eyes unseeing, teeth for the most part missing, loathsome; death everywhere including tanks of water, bodies floating, all so surreal.
Abscessed appendages affecting zombie-like movements, others not moving at all in what clearly was an area set up as an operating room, bloody and messy as a butcher shop.
The tour included a room behind the door of which a woman screamed for a long time on one terrible note, was silent for a moment, and screamed again. Still another was hanged by his hands – bound behind his back – from a hook on the wall.
And bones. Lots of bones, yellow and hideous, bones grown huge because there was no flesh to cover them, terrible, agonizing bones.
There was a barb-wired fence whereon a man hung as if electrocuted.
And bordering it all, as if there had not been time to hide them, were flowers, beautiful flowers. And a vegetable garden. And of course the well-built, commodious home behind where the family lives.
Descriptions are from the book entitled “Tell Me No Lies” edited by John Pilger, subtitled “Investigative Journalism That Changed the World.”
The first example in its pages of such journalism is that by Martha Gellhorn, one of the first to enter the Nazi death camp, record what she saw and from that scene send her dispatch expressing, “aside from the terrible anger you feel, you are ashamed. You are ashamed for mankind.”
Her dispatch is simply entitled: