Saturday, May 28, 2016

Mattogno’s Cremation Encyclopedia (Part 2, Section 2)

Introduction and Part 1, Section 1
Part 1, Section 2a
Part 1, Section 2b
Part 2, Section 1
Part 2, Section 2
Part 2, Section 3
Part 2, Section 4
Part 2, Section 5
Part 3, Section 1
Part 3, Section 2
Part 4

Fuel requirements (2)

On p. 136 of MGK’s Sobibór book Mattogno had dismissed as possible indicators of fuel requirements in mass cremation a number of directives stating fuel requirements "either because they also mention fuels other than wood (straw, coal, liquid fuels) or because they refer to the initial layout of the pyre, allowing for the addition of fuel depending upon the progress of the incineration" – hardly a convincing argument, as I pointed out in the critique (note 105 of p. 462). He then postulated that the only reliable data refer to the operational results of the Air Curtain Burner, and presented a source about air curtain incinerations in which the fuel consumption had been 3.04 kg of timber per kg of carcass.

On p. 1368 of the magnum opus, Mattogno refers to his previous writings, shows a diagram (Illustration 12.18) and brags as follows:
In order to avoid any pointless controversies, I based myself on a technical expert report concerning such a facility and the necessary related scientific equipment, starting with the combustion diagrams indicating the temperature flow over time (Illustration 12.18).

Having thus given himself a "scientific" image in the eyes of gullible "Revisionist" readers[109], Mattogno contrasts his approach with my response, which is supposed to have consisted only of a reference to a private message I received from the sales manager of Air Burners LLC in Florida, USA, who in Mattogno’s mind must have wanted to "present his product in the most favorable light, including with regard to its efficiency". I don’t think said sales manager saw my inquiry as that of a potential customer because I gave him no reason to, but even if he did he would have been stupid (subjecting his company to eventual warranty claims because the product failed to meet advised performance parameters) to claim a fuel efficiency three times higher than the one that could be achieved in practice, which he would have done when informing me that the fuel to carcass ratio was about 1:1. Additionally and more importantly, the sales manager was not my only source, for footnote 103 on pp. 461-62 reads as follows (emphases added):
Online under MGK (Sobibór, p.135) claim that the only reliable data regarding fuel requirements in (open-air) carcass burning refer to the use air curtain burners, devices for the cremation of carcasses that consist of a burner and a powerful blower linked to an enclosure of refractory material or to a ditch into which the carcasses are placed. They mention a case in which the burning of 16.1 tons of carcasses required 49 tons of timber with an average humidity of about 20 percent, a wood weight to carcass weight ratio of 3.04 to 1. However, air Curtain incinerators are not noted for fuel efficiency, according to the TAHC’s aforementioned General Guidelines for the Disposal of Carcasses, whereby air curtain incineration is "fuel intensive" (p.9). These guidelines on the other hand mention fuel-to-carcass ratio much lower than MGK claim for the experiment they mention: "The materials required are wood (in a wood: carcass ratio of from 1:1 to 2:1), diesel fuel for both the fire and the air-curtain fan, and properly trained personnel. For incineration of 500 adult swine, the requirements are 30 cords of dry wood and 200 gallons of diesel fuel." (p.8) The mentioned ratios are in line with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)/TAHC report on an experiment of burning swine carcasses at Pilot Point, Texas, on 19-20 December 1994, available under They are also in line with a communication sent to the author by Mr. Norbert Fuhrmann, sales manager of Air Burners LLC in Florida, USA, which is quoted in Muehlenkamp, ‘Carlo Mattogno on Belzec Archaeological Research - Part 4 (2)’. According to Mr. Fuhrmann: "A good rule of thumb is that you need roughly in tons the same amount of wood waste as the weight of the carcasses for bovines, pigs, horses, sheep, etc. For 5 tons of carcasses you need 4-5 tons of wood waste." These equally reliable sources conveniently omitted by MGK show that carcasses can be burned at a much lower wood-weight-to-carcass-weight ratio than in the cases they mention.

The footnote is quoted in full and with added emphases to show that Mattogno could impossibly have missed the highlighted passages, and that his claim that I presented the sales manager of Air Burners LLC in Florida, USA as my only source can therefore not have been due to mere oversight. It is, to put it plainly, a lie of Mattogno’s – and not a very intelligent one considering how easily it can be exposed as such.

Following this disgraceful behavior, Mattogno refers to the wood/flesh ratios he observed in his own experiments, and asks why I have not performed such experiments myself. He omits that the reason why he performed these experiments was because certain data in German engineer W. Heepke’s writings about carcass cremation he had referred to were not to his liking, as becomes apparent from Mattogno’s article about his experiments[110]. Rather than perform experiments, I obtained an article about the experiments that Heepke had referred to, written by the veterinarians who had conducted these experiments, which suggests that – contrary to Mattogno’s speculation whereby the experiments had resulted only in more or less complete carbonization[111], the carcasses were reduced to what the authors called "a weakly smoking heap of ashes" in one case[112].

In the mentioned article the authors, Dr. Lothes and Dr. Profé, described six carcass cremation experiments performed according to two different methods. In experiments I, II and III, the carcass was placed on iron T-carriers placed across a pit in which the fire was burning. In experiments IV, V and VI, the fire was burning in a smaller pit excavated from the bottom of a larger pit, and the carriers on which the carcass was lain were placed across the smaller inner pit, so that the carcass burned inside the pit whereas in experiments I, II and III it burned outside the pit. On p. 1369 Mattogno shows an illustration of the second method, which I reproduce below with some editing (I have reddened the iron carriers’ support placed across the inner pit). This is followed by an illustration of the first method, in which the reddened carrier support is placed about the outer pit and the inner pit, which doesn’t exist, has been blackened.

Image 2.10 – Pit arrangement in Lothes & Profés experiments IV, V and VI

Image 2.11 – Pit arrangement in Lothes & Profé’s experiments I, II and III

The former arrangement I likened to the method applied at Sobibór according to several eyewitness testimonies (burning on grates inside a pit), the latter to the method applied at Treblinka according to Leleko’s testimony and the judgments at the 1st (Kurt Franz et al) and 2nd (Franz Stangl) Düsseldorf trials. Regarding Bełżec and Chełmno, I assumed that the arrangements must have corresponded to either the one applied at Sobibór or the one applied at Treblinka. [113]

Mattogno kindly provided two cremation grid facility schemes on p. 1370, the upper showing what he considers to have been the arrangement at Treblinka and Bełżec, the latter the arrangement at Sobibór.

Image 2.12 – Cremation schemes by Mattogno

I slightly edited the former scheme to show what I consider to have been the arrangement at Treblinka.

Image 2.13 – Edited Treblinka cremation scheme

Regarding the Sobibór structure Mattogno seems to have no objections ("The facility with a grid inside a pit is attested to by exterminationist historiography only for Sobibór"), whereas regarding Treblinka he objects that "the data resulting from the verdict of the Düsseldorf Court of 3 September 1965 and of 22 December 1970 and from the testimony of Leleko are contradictory, rendering it impossible to establish the system of cremation employed in that camp". That may be so if one acts like a child that stands before a heap of puzzle parts, decides after a brief glance that nothing fits together, angrily throws the whole stuff out of the window and tells Mommy, who asks for the puzzle, that there had never been one. If, however, one makes to effort of trying fit the pieces of the puzzle together, which is what historians do, it is possible to reconcile the verdict of the Düsseldorf Court of 3 September 1965 (which doesn’t mention a pit, but neither rules out that there was one) with the verdict of 22 December 1970 and the testimony of Leleko (in which a pit is mentioned) [114]. As concerns Bełżec, Mattogno’s objection is that "the only witness providing any details in this regard, Heinrich Gley (in his interrogation of 8 May 1961), spoke of a “construction of large grids, upon which the corpses were burned,” without any reference to pits". That may be so, but the very paucity of the description means that the presence of a pit underneath the "construction of large grids" cannot be excluded. Regarding Chełmno Mattogno makes no comment.

Mattogno then claims that a comparison of his cremation schemes with the sketch of the Lothes and Profé facility "shows that the systems are unrelated". Actually the comparison shows that they are quite similar to each other. Setting up the grates inside a pit and lighting a fire underneath has the same effect as placing the grates atop a smaller fire pit inside a larger pit, which is that of avoiding heat loss and protecting the fire against the wind. One might even argue that air circulation was better in the Sobibór arrangement than in experiments IV, V and VI by Lothes and Profé. And the only difference between the Treblinka arrangement as I reconstructed it and the arrangement in Lothes & Profé’s experiments I, II and III is that in the latter the bottom of the grates was on the rims of the pit whereas in the former there was some space between the bottom of the grate and the rims of the pit, corresponding to the above-ground part of the concrete blocks supporting the grate.

In their aforementioned article, Lothes & Profé rendered their total fuel requirements (minus accelerants whose quantities were considered negligible) in "evaporation units" (E.U.), an "evaporation unit" being the amount of energy required to evaporate 1 kg of water. They also provided information that allows for converting these evaporation units into wood weights, as I did on p. 465 of the critique, namely that 1 kg of wood can evaporate 9 kg of water. If 1 kg of wood can evaporate 9 kg of water, the mass in kg of wood or wood equivalent can be obtained dividing by nine the number of E.U. stated by Lothes & Profé regarding each of their experiments, which leads to the following wood weights per kg of carcass weight:

Experiment I: 4.5÷9 = 0.5 kg
Experiment II: 3.88÷9 = 0.43 kg
Experiment III: 6.75÷9 = 0.75 kg
Average I, II and III: 5.04÷9 = 0.56 kg
Experiment IV: 3.65÷9 = 0.41 kg
Experiment V: 4.76÷9 = 0.53 kg
Experiment VI: 4.5÷9 = 0.5 kg
Average IV, V and VI: 4.3÷9 = 0.43 kg

Mattogno objects to the assumptions underlying Lothes & Profe´s calculations and mine (namely that 1 kg of wood evaporates 9 kg of water, 1 kg of brown coal evaporates 12 kg of water) on grounds that "since the vaporization heat of 1 kg of water ter equals 640 kcal, it is not clear how 1,500 kcal could vaporize 9 kg of water and 2,000 kcal 12 kg of water". He therefore elaborates on an alternative method for calculating the wood equivalent of the flammables used in experiment I, which however reaches the same results as concerns the wood equivalent of wood and brown coal spent in that experiment (300 kg for a 600 kg carcass, corresponding to 0.5 kg of wood per kg of carcass), the only difference resulting from his including in the calculation the 25 kg of tar also applied by the veterinarians in that experiment, which these had left out of their calculations. These are Mattogno’s calculations on pp. 1372f., which are quoted because they are necessary to understand his subsequent calculations:
The energy content of 1 kg of lignite coal briquet is between 4,700 and 5,200 kcal/kg,2999 on average 4,950 kcal/kg. This means that Heepke considered the efficiency of the combustible material used in the above-mentioned experiments to be [(2,000 ÷ 4,950) × 100 =) 40.4%.
The effective heat developed by the anthracite coal tar thus corresponds to (228,750 × 0.404 =) 92,415 kcal.
If the wood used had a calorific effect of 1,500 kcal/kg with an efficiency of 40.4%, its energy contents would be (1,500 ÷ 0.404) ≈ 3,700 kcal/kg, a value compatible with normal parameters of dry wood.
By expressing all the combustible materials as units of wood, one obtains the following balance: wood: 100 kg × 3,700 kcal/kg = 370,000 kcal.
briquet: 150 kg × 4,950 kcal/kg = 742,500 kcal, corresponding to (742,500 kcal ÷ 3,700 kcal/kg =) 200 kg of wood;
tar: 25 kg × 9,150 kcal/kg = 228,750 kcal, the equivalent of (228,750 kcl ÷ 3,700 kcal/kg) ≈ 62 kg of wood.
The equivalent consumption of wood is therefore (100 + 200 + 62 =) 362 kg, and the above-mentioned ratio changes from 0.46 to 0.60.
In the case of fresh wood (1,900 kcal/kg), with a calorific effect of (1,900 kcal/kg × 0.404 =) 767 kcal/kg, the total consumption would be (362 kg ÷ 1,900 kcal/kg × 3,700 kcal/kg) ≈ 705 kg, with a ratio of 1.17:1.

In the following I’ll do these calculations for all six experiments performed by Lothes & Profé. For (dry) wood, brown coal and tar I’ll take Mattogno’s energy values (respectively 3,700, 4,950 and 9,150 kcal/kg), for the resin used in experiment nr. II I’ll assume the same value as for tar, which should be on the high side as Lothes & Profé considered resin a comparatively ineffective accelerant. For the conversion from dry wood to fresh wood I’ll use the same formula as Mattogno. I also provide the results without including the tar or resin for comparison, which are identical to those of Lothes & Profé calculations and my own previous calculation.

Table 2.3 – Wood/wood equivalent consumption in Lothes & Profé’s experiments I to VI, with and without considering tar or resin.

Following his calculations that I expanded above, Mattogno on p. 1373 produces the following bluster:
Here Muehlenkamp’s obtuse ignorance takes over. The results of these experiments depended on two simultaneous factors: on one hand the capacity to burn in an efficient way the fat of the carcass; on the other the capacity to monitor the combustion process accurately.

Regarding the first factor, Mattogno wouldn’t be breaking any news if he just wanted to express what is self-understood, namely that the carcasses burned by Lothes & Profé were normally fed carcasses containing fat that contributed to the combustion process. But Mattogno tries to make believe that Lothes & Profé burned the corpses’ fat in a particularly efficient form and that the carcasses they burned were particularly fat ones. For the former L&P’s article offers no support and Mattogno quotes no other source, so I’ll politely call this a speculation of Mattogno’s. In support of the latter, Mattogno quotes from L&P’s article a passage that I translated as follows:
After the carcass had completely caught fire, no more burning material was added, obviously for reasons of economy. Due to the abundant fat the burning process was nevertheless entertained.

The quote is taken out of context, for it refers not to any of the six burning experiments undertaken by Lothes & Profé but to an earlier burning of an anthrax carcass expressly described as a "very well fed cow", and only the burning time (40 hours) and the cost incurred (about 3 marks) are stated, but not the amounts of fuel (brown coal briquettes) that were employed. As concerns the six experiments, only in one (experiment nr. IV) was the carcass described as "very massive and fatty", suggesting that in the other five experiments the carcasses had a fat content that was normal for their species but not noteworthy. In four of the six experiments, including experiment nr. IV, the carcasses burned were horse carcasses. Horses are not generally known to be fat animals[115], which was presumably why the fat content of the animal burned in experiment nr. IV was considered extraordinary and accordingly noted.

Now to the second factor that is supposed to have accounted for the low fuel consumption in Lothes & Profé’s experiments. In order to claim "the possibility, or rather the necessity, to monitor accurately the combustion process and to oxygenate the carcass adequately", Mattogno mistranslates a statement of engineer Heepke’s[116]:
"Die einzige Schwierigkeit liegt nur darin, dass stets ein Sachverständiger den Prozess in die Wege leiten muss."
as follows:
"The only difficulty was that the process had to be constantly supervised by an expert."

Apart from using the past tense where Heepke had written in the present tense, the translation is flawed in that "in die Wege leiten" does not mean "to supervise" let alone "to constantly supervise", as a native speaker of the German language will immediately recognize. The Leo online dictionary[117]offers the translations "to initiate something" and "to engineer something" for "in die Wege leiten". What Heepke probably meant to say is that the making of the pit or the outer and inner pits, the arrangement of the burning materials, the placement of the iron carriers and the placement of the carcass on the iron carriers required expert guidance, notwithstanding the precise instructions contained in Lothes & Profé’s article[118]. Maybe expert guidance was also required to extract the carcass’s entrails, which was part of Lothes & Profé’s recommendations based on their experiments IV, V and VI. However, once the burning process had started (or at the latest after the carcass had caught fire), what would the experts on site be required for?

Among other things (what other things?) in order to put the entrails "on the pyre piece by piece as the combustion proceeded", according to Mattogno. As soft tissues "not only restrict heat transfer but also effectively cut off the oxygen supply to the underlying bone", according to a source about another cremation topic quoted by Mattogno[119], this is supposed to have a major impact on fuel consumption and cremation time. Yet in at least two of Lothes & Profé experiments, the ones numbered II and III, the entrails were not extracted from the carcass prior to cremation[120]. Nevertheless experiment II, while lasting 6 hours longer than experiment I, was more fuel-efficient than the latter (0.52 vs. 0.60 kg of wood or wood equivalent per kg of carcass, including the tar), whereas experiment nr. III, while more fuel-intensive than the previous two (0.87 kg of wood or wood equivalent per kg of carcass, including the tar or resin) lasted only 8 hours and 15 minutes, less than half the duration of experiment I although the carcass weighed exactly half as much (300 vs. 600 kg). So these results don’t suggest that removing the entrails before cremation and putting them on the pyre as the burning progresses leads to savings in fuel consumption or time. To be sure, the entrails were removed in all of experiments IV, V and VI, which were more fuel-efficient on average than experiments I, II and III (0.55 vs. 0.67 kg of wood or wood equivalent per kg of carcass, including the tar or resin), and the burning was also considerably faster, but Lothes & Profé expressly attributed these advantages to the arrangement of the pyre:
By burning the carcasses in the two-part (sunken) pit one achieves, besides a better use of the burning material, a certain independence from the wind. As the pits must sometimes be made already on the day of postmortem, this advantage, having in view an eventual change of the wind direction, should not be underestimated.

So if the removal and later addition of the entrails had an impact on fuel consumption and/or burning time, it must have been marginal.

This means that Mattogno’s explanation for the low fuel consumption in Lothes & Profé’s experiments fails on both arguments. The low fuel consumption was due neither to the carcasses being extraordinarily fat nor to constant expert supervision namely as concerns the removal and later addition of the carcasses’ entrails. It was due to arrangement of the pyre, with the "two-part (sunken) pit" achieving slightly better results than the one-part pit, though not by a wide margin as concerns fuel consumption.

Therefore, and considering the above-mentioned similarities between Lothes & Profe’s pyre arrangements and the pyre arrangements at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps, what reasons are there to not use the former as a fuel consumption indicator for the latter?

While conceding (p. 1376) that a direct comparison between Lothes & Profé’s pyres and the pyres of Aktion Reinhard(t) would "only" make sense "if the corpses in the “Aktion Reinhardt” camps would have been put one by one onto the cremation grids", Mattogno argues that "the orthodox hypothesis is radically different", the "radical" difference being that the corpses didn’t lie on the grates side by side in a single layer but were piled on top of each other. Mattogno claims that in a huge heap of corpses placed over a grid "only the external parts would be exposed to the flames and oxygen, while the internal parts would remain protected from the heat and without the influx of oxygen for a considerable time", and argues that for this reason "directives for the combustion of dead animals prescribe that carcasses are not amassed on top of each other".

The directive he presents in support of his argument on p. 1383 is a Field Manual of Wildlife Diseases, by Milton Friend and J. Christian Franson, namely it’s Chapter 4 on "Disease Control Operations"[121], which we shall thus take a look at.

The carcasses that these instructions refer to are avian carcasses, and the instructions point out that it’s important to "keep the fire contained and to get sufficient air movement under the carcasses to maintain a hot fire and completely burn the carcasses", suggesting that the objective is a complete combustion and not merely a however thorough carbonization. Incineration is "facilitated by stacking or piling carcasses on the burning platform, soaking them with used oil or some other fuel, and waiting about 10 to 15 minutes before igniting them". During dry weather, "burning carcasses in a pit surrounded by a vegetation-free area is more desirable than above-ground burning". In either situation, however, "piling too many carcasses on the fire at once is a common mistake"; it is recommended to "burn carcasses one layer at a time" The reason for this recommendation is given in Figure 4.13, which contains the following two images that Mattogno reproduces on p. 1383:

Image 2.14 – Correct layering of carcasses

Image 2.15 – Incorrect layering of carcasses

The stated (possible) consequences of incorrect layering are that charred outer carcasses may insulate inner carcasses from incineration. As the carcasses portrayed are avian carcasses and the instructions are chiefly if not wholly concerned with the burning of such carcasses, the question arises whether these consequences have something to do with particular characteristics of this type of carcass. Birds have feathers that can retain water, and accordingly are more difficult to burn than e.g. swine. [122] However, instructions for the burning of animals felled by foot and mouth disease[123]also mention that "If carcasses are piled incorrectly on top of one another rather than in a single layer, carcasses in the centre may be protected and not burn properly". The wording suggests that "protection" of carcasses in the center of the pyre is considered a possible ("may be protected") and not a certain consequence of incorrectly piling carcasses on top of one another. In fact, one of the images in the aforementioned Chapter 4 shows avian carcasses that seem to have been incorrectly piled on top of one another and are nevertheless burning well enough.

Image 2.16 – Avian carcasses being incinerated on an above-ground burning platform

Piling carcasses on top of one another seems to also have been practiced on occasion during the 2001 food and mouth disease epidemic in the UK, as is suggested by the image below. [124]

Image 2.17 – Layering of carcasses during the 2001 foot and mouth disease epidemic in the UK

If carcasses in the center of the pyre are "protected" from the fire by charred outer carcasses, the stated consequence is an improper burning of the carcasses in the center, which would have its parallel in the improper and incomplete combustion or carbonization of corpses or parts of corpses on the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres that becomes apparent from the aforementioned evidence and had to be made up for by laborious post-incineration processing. It is therefore not an argument against considering fuel consumption in Lothes & Profé’s pyres an indicator of fuel consumption on the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres.

On pp. 465f. of the critique I had considered the possibility that the fuel-to-carcass ratio might be lower when burning large numbers of carcasses than when burning a single carcass, based on a table shown by Mattogno that states the kg of fuel per kg of carcass ratio in various types of animal incinerator ovens, with the ratio decreasing as the maximum load of carcass mass increases. Mattogno delivers a lecture spanning about 1 ½ pages preceded by his customary ad hominem ("Muehlenkamp offers another example of his sad incompetence"), in which he claims that the more favorable fuel-to-carcass ratios in the larger ovens were due to certain characteristics of the larger ovens, namely a "better ratio of load to refractory wall weight". I have no way of verifying the accuracy of this claim and therefore let Mattogno indulge in his vanity, while noting that the fuel-to-carcass ratio can indeed be reduced when cremating multiple carcasses in relation to the burning of a single carcass, as is mentioned on p. 28 of the Australian Veterinary Emergency Plan - Operational Procedures Manual – Disposal (hereinafter "Ausvetplan"), which was pointed out to me by one of Mattogno’s fellow "Revisionists"[125]. The latest version of the Ausvetplan (Version 3.1, 2015) [126] contains the following information in Appendix 7:
Experience has demonstrated that a single bovine carcass (around 500 kg) can be completely consumed using 1.5 tonne of dry timber (Worsfold and King 2006). For multiple carcasses, the amount of timber can be reduced to around 1.0 tonne per adult bovine. Carcasses are layered onto the pyre, preferably on their backs. Because the rear ends of bovine carcasses are usually the hardest to consume, alternating carcasses head to tail can even out the burn. Carcasses should only be stacked one row high and should have sufficient air space around them (Figure A7.1). The number of carcasses per pyre should be limited to a manageable level. Restricting airflow around the carcasses will reduce the efficiency of combustion and produce more smoke.

(Emphases added.)
There’s no indication that stacking carcasses more than one row high would increase fuel consumption, but if more fuel were used to achieve the same result despite reduced combustion efficiency, that increase might be offset by economies of scale, so that carcasses piled on top of each other contrary to these instructions would require the same amount of fuel per weight unit as a single carcass.

The wood weight to carcass weight ratio according to the instructions quoted above is 3:1 when incinerating a single carcass and 2:1 when incinerating multiple carcasses. Lothes & Profé, on the other hand, achieved a wood weight to carcass weight ratio of 0.67:1 in their least fuel-efficient experiments I to III, and of 0.56:1 in their most fuel-efficient experiments IV to VI, burning a single carcass on each occasion. What explains the huge difference in fuel-to-carcass ratios? Maybe it is the superiority of Lothes & Profé’s method alone, in which case the question would arise why this method (assuming familiarity with the same) is not recommended for carcass incineration in instructions like the Ausvetplan. Possible reasons for this could be that certain required materials (the iron T-carriers used by L&P) are not so easy to obtain, especially when a large number of carcasses has to be disposed of within a short time, and that the proper setting up of a pyre according to Lothes & Profé’s method, as mentioned by Heepke, requires expert guidance. Whatever the reason, the fact is that the configuration of a pyre shown in the image on p. 88 of the Ausvetplan, in which the carcasses are placed directly on the burning material above ground:

Image 2.18 – Example of construction of a pyre, including aerial view (Ausvetplan, p. 88)

resembles the "simplest procedure" described by Engineer Heepke as quoted by Mattogno[127], except that the burning material is above ground and not inside a pit. This "simplest procedure", according to my calculations in an earlier blog[128], is rather fuel intensive, with ratios even above the 3:1 ratio for individual carcass cremations stated in the Ausvetplan.

Another possible explanation for the difference in fuel requirements between the Ausvetplan’s instructions and the experiments of Lothes & Profé is that the fuel requirements stated in the former are meant to bring about a complete combustion of the carcass, whereas the experiments of L&P were meant to achieve and did achieve a lesser degree of combustion. An indication in this sense is provided by a later article written by Lothes & Profé[129], in which the authors used the terms (vollständige) Verkohlung (carbonization) and Verbrennung in regard to the results of their further experiments as if they meant the same. This suggests that the objective of L&P’s cremation experiments was satisfied when the carcasses were completely carbonized. If one considers that complete carbonization means a reduction of the corpse or carcass mass as shown in the above images 2.4, 2.5 and 2.6, i.e. a reduction to remains that might be called "ash" or "ashes" in a generous sense of the term, it stands to reason that this was also the purpose of the pyres set up on the Dresden Altmarkt and in the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps, and that as concerns the latter a considerable effort to further reduce remains by post-cremation processing was envisaged by the camps’ SS supervisors. This, in turn, is a further reason for considering Lothes & Profe’s experiments to be indicators regarding the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps as concerns fuel consumption.

Now back to Mattogno, who, oblivious of the impact of economies of scale, claims on p. 1378 to have demonstrated "above" that "the “mass incineration of corpses” would result in a proportionally higher consumption of combustible materials in respect to a single cremation, both because the air could not freely flow around each corpse and because the high temperature of the blaze would prevent any access to the pyre", such access being supposedly necessary "to control the process of combustion and to rationally and economically handle the fat of the bodies". Actually there is no demonstration "above" of a "proportionally higher consumption of combustible materials in respect to a single cremation", as Mattogno provided no calculations in this sense and such are also not to be found in the source he refers to, which merely mention the possibility of corpses in the centre of a pile burning not so well. As to activities meant to "rationally and economically handle the fat of the bodies", Mattogno hasn’t revealed what such activities he has in mind, namely as concerns the experiments of Lothes & Profé; the only activities he mentioned was adding the carcasses viscera to the fire as the burning progressed, which as we have seen had a marginal effect on fuel economy, if any at all. Maybe he thought of something like moving the bodies on the pyre with iron tools, so as to place them where the fire is hottest and thus help their ignition. If so, the witness Reichman’s statement that "Within a few minutes the fire would take so it was difficult to approach the crematorium from as far as 50 meters away", quoted by Mattogno, would be no argument against the possibility of tending the fire if it referred only to the heat of the initial blaze, after which the fire became less intense, or if the SS somehow managed to fix the problem, mentioned by Chil Rajchman, "that the work is hampered by the intense fire, which does not let anyone get close to the oven"[130]. One or the other possibility if suggested by testimonies whereby the Feuerkolonne (fire detachment) used pitchforks and iron poles not only to arrange the bodies on the grate, but also to shift them around after the fire had caught[131].

Perhaps in order to obfuscate the fact that he has so far provided no arguments of substance against using the results of Lothes & Profé’s experiments as an indicator of fuel requirements at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps, Mattogno changes the subject to Auschwitz, on the pretext that the "plagiarist bloggers" are "fierce supporters of the notion that human fat was collected in the “cremation pits” for use as fuel, especially with regard to Auschwitz-Birkenau". Especially? I’m not aware of the collection of human fat in cremation pits for use as fuel having been reported for any camp other than Auschwitz-Birkenau, and I neither understand what the procedure adopted there has got to do with the subject matter of the discussion, which are the camps of Aktion Reinhard(t) and Chełmno extermination camp.

Mattogno claims to have demonstrated in another article that "a fundamental contradiction exists between the technique of Lothes and Profé and the testimonial evidence" (to the collection of fat in the cremation pits at Birkenau, he obviously means) and adds that "as explained above, the heat produced by the fat from the carcass was rationally managed by being poured into the pit below (measuring 1 m × 2.5 m × 0.75 m) from where it helped fuel the combustion". The only "explanation" I remember to have seen was the aforementioned out-of-context quote from Lothes & Profé’s 1902 article meant to create the impression that their results were achieved due to the burned carcasses’ particularly high fat content, but if the fat from the carcass was "rationally managed by being poured into the pit below" (where it would fall according to the law of gravity, big deal), this is another parallel between Lothes & Profe’s experiments and the pyres at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps, which were entertained largely due to the bodies’ fat that dripped onto the fire below and caught fire there, as mentioned in passing by Bruce V. Ettling in an article about experiments in one of which a similar effect was observed[132].

Mattogno subsequent rambling about the impossibility of the Birkenau fat collecting procedure described by witnesses is off-topic in this discussion and will therefore be ignored here. In what seems to be a further effort to obfuscate the shortcomings of his argumentation against the similarity between Lothes & Profé’s experiments and the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres, Mattogno then asks why, if the grid system underlying these pyres was so effective, the same was not also implemented at Auschwitz-Birkenau. Simple answer to an irrelevant and pointless question: probably for the same reason that Rudolf Höss, obviously a man who liked to do things his own way instead of copying others, preferred to continue killing his victims with Zyklon B rather than with engine exhaust, even after having been introduced to the latter method.

After this excursion to Auschwitz, Mattogno quotes the conclusions I stated on pp. 467f. of the critique, which I will also have to quote in full to make Mattogno’s related comments understandable:
The conclusions that the above leads to are the following:
a) Fuel expenditure in cremating corpses or carcasses essentially depends on applying the correct method.
b) MGK presented no arguments that would make a wood weight to corpse/carcass weight ratio of 2:1 seem inappropriate.
c) There are good reasons to assume that the fuel-weight to carcass-weight ratio achieved in burning corpses at Nazi extermination camps was much lower than 2:1. Aggarwal’s "raised human-sized brazier" may have achieved a ratio of 100 kg of wood vs. 70 kg of corpse = 1.43:1, and the carcass-burning experiments I to III conducted by Dr. Lothes and Dr. Profé in the early 20th Century (the comparatively less fuel-efficient of their experiments) achieved an average ratio of 0.56:1. Descriptions of the burning process at Sobibor actually suggest a similarity to the more fuel-efficient of Dr. Lothes & Dr. Profé’s experiments, the ones at which a ratio of 0.48:1 was achieved.
d) There's no reason why SS expert Floss (the man who according to the Stangl judgment "brought the grid into the right position" at Treblinka) could not have achieved in mass burning a ratio equal to or lower than what had been achieved by Dr. Lothes & Dr. Profé burning individual carcasses in the early 20th century.

After some of his ad-hominem rhetoric regarding item a), Mattogno flies into a fit of full-blown hysteria regarding item b), which he calls a "pathetic lie" on grounds of his having presented the following "essential consumption data for the various systems presented (in relation to a body of 70 kg)":
1) Teri cremation oven: 1.82 kg of wood for each kg of body
2) Mokshda system: 2.14 kg/kg
3) Fuel Efficient Crematorium: 3.6 kg/kg
4) traditional Hindu pyre: 7.14 kg/kg
5) Air Curtain System (technical expert report): 3.04 kg/kg
6) burning of carcasses: 3.6 kg/kg (based on the total weight of the ashes)
7) burning of poultry carcasses in Virginia: 4.4 kg/kg
8) combustion experiments by Mattogno: 3.5 kg/kg.

Mattogno’s "lie" accusation would be silly even if his list were not mendaciously selective in his favor, for it contains two examples of ratios in the order of 2:1, which alone means that it’s not inappropriate to consider the possibility of a 2:1 ratio in mass cremation of carcasses besides the higher ratios mentioned by Mattogno.

As concerns item 5), we have seen before that Mattogno conveniently swept under the carpet the TAHC’s General Guidelines for the Disposal of Carcasses, which mention a wood to carcass ratio of from 1:1 to 2:1. This alone means that the only liar here is Mattogno.

Example 7) can also be considered mendacious insofar as Mattogno omits the factors leading to this extraordinarily unfavorable ratio that are stated in the respective source, referred to in footnote 106 on p. 462 of the critique, which show that incineration of poultry carcasses can hardly be taken as a representative case[133].

As concerns example 6), Mattogno is presumably referring to a claim made on pp. 135f. of MGK’s Sobibór book, whereby 350 kg of ashes per ton of animal from the burning of a beef carcass, mentioned in an article identified in footnote 105 on p. 462 of the critique, contain 60 kg of carcass ash (6 % of 1,000 kg) and 290 kg of wood ash, which are supposed to correspond to (290÷0.08=) 3,625 kg of wood, signifying a wood-to-carcass weight ratio of 3.6 to 1. The falsity of this calculation was exposed on pp. 508f. of the critique, where it was demonstrated that the ratio is rather in the order of 2:1.

And then there are the mass cremation examples that Mattogno completely left out of his list, namely those presented by his fellow "Revisionist" Heinrich Köchel. [134] As I demonstrated in an earlier blog[135], three of these cremation cases (Heddon-on-the-Wall, first Oswestry and Bondues, France) plus one guideline presumably based on a wide range of experience (FAO) yield fuel to body mass ratios below 2:1, and even close to or below 1:1 if pig weights higher than 100 kg are considered. This proves that it is possible to cremate carcasses in open pyres with fuel to body mass ratios below 2:1 or even close to or below 1:1.

Such possibility alone means that Mattogno and his epigones cannot provide proof that it is impossible to cremate carcasses in open pyres at fuel to body mass ratios below their desired 3.5:1 ratio. Interestingly Mattogno had in an earlier publication addressing this writer[136] argued, with reference to Köchel, that "From a serious study of the literature relating to the burning of animal carcasses during epidemics, it turns out that the equivalent given for a human corpse weighing 70 kg is 140 kg of firewood, thus 2 kg of firewood per 1 kg of meat.". Now he seems to have realized that Köchel’s examples are detrimental to his argument, and thus dropped them like a hot potato.

That leaves the "Fuel Efficient Crematorium" in India (which is fuel efficient only in comparison to the traditional Hindu pyre), the traditional Hindu pyre, and the "combustion experiments by Mattogno" as the only examples in support of Mattogno’s desired ratio of 3.5:1, versus a larger number of examples pointing to significantly lower ratios. Mattogno’s claim that his assumption of a 3.5:1 ratio for the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres is "very much validated" can therefore only evoke amusement.

The same goes for Mattogno’s comment to my conclusion c), which deserves being quoted in full splendor:
Point c) constitutes another proof of Muehlenkamp’s incompetence. The claim of a consumption of 100 kg of wood for the cremation of a body of 70 kg using the Mokshda system was only a theoretical forecast of its inventor, Vinod Kumar Agarwal. When the apparatus was built in Delhi, the consumption turned out to be 150 kg (see point 37).

One wonders what part of the following information in the pertinent source (emphases added) [137]:
Estimating that it should only take about 44 pounds (22 kilograms) of wood to cremate the average body (as opposed to the excessive 880 pounds, or 440 kilograms, typically consumed in a 6 hour long formal Hindu cremation), he built his first pyre in 1993, an elevated brazier (i.e. a metal pan or cooking device) under a roof with slats to maintain the heat, which allowed air to circulate and feed the fire.
While seemingly a good idea (it only used about 100 kilograms of wood and reduced the process to 2 hours), nobody was buying it.
This prompted Agarwal and his team to "get religion on our side."

could have been too hard for Mattogno to understand. Agarwal’s first creation, the "elevated brazier", was clearly not just a theoretical forecast according to this description, but a tested device that yielded the results described. Incidentally, information about its successor, the Mokshda facility (brought to me by the ever useful Friedrich Jansson) [138], also suggests the possibility of a ratio lower than that claimed by Mattogno:
Recently, a highly influential family reportedly reached Lodhi Road crematorium ground with the mortal remains of their beloved. Along with it they brought 400 kg of precious sandalwood for the purpose of cremation. After all, the last rites ritual is an important occasion to honour and respect the memories of the departed soul. So, even if it takes huge quantity of this valuable timber, so be it.
At the crematorium they came across an eco-friendly cremation system Mokshda, using which they were told could save 300 kg of the wood. They did exactly that, used 100 kg of the wood and took back the rest. But the makers of Mokshda aren't as lucky every time. People are not willing to listen so readily. [139]

The article later mentions that the Mokshda Green Cremation System (MGCS) requires MGCS requires "150 kg of wood as against the 400 kg required in the conventional system". This information can be reconciled with the 100 kg that become apparent from the above quote by assuming that the fuel requirements are not the same in every cremation and 150 kg per corpse is a maximum.

The MGCS has undergone significant modifications since its first version, modifications apparently aimed less at increasing efficiency than at making it more acceptable to tradition-minded Hindus:
Before building its latest pyres—including the dozen currently functioning—the NGO consulted Hindu priests on all aspects of their design. Among several changes that resulted, it stopped making its pyres in iron, which is an “unclean” metal for Hindus. It includes an icon of the Hindu god Shiva with each pyre, and has an education programme to help persuade traditionalists of the environmental evils of a conventional burning. [140]

Could it be that the mentioned changes (e.g. replacing iron by a less conductive metal, or by tile material) sacrificed some fuel efficiency to better acceptability? Perhaps, but the above-quoted source also mentions 100 kg of wood per corpse cremation:
This “Mokshda green cremation system” gives control over the temperature and circulation of the air around the flames. Mokshda says its system can dispose of a corpse in no more than two hours, using only 100kg of wood.

And it further mentions planned improvements, though the article quoted earlier suggests that these have not yet been achieved:
With further improvements, Mokshda aims to be able to reduce an adult's corpse to ashes with only 70kg of wood.

These are current values or projections for individual cremation. It may be more difficult if not impossible to achieve the same air flow quality for each corpse in multiple cremation, but on the other hand, wouldn’t the above-mentioned economies of scale reduce fuel consumption, perhaps by one-third (i.e. from 150 kg to 100 kg, from 100 kg to 67 kg, or from the projected 70 kg to 47 kg per corpse)? Looks like a possibility to be taken into consideration.

Still, the methods closest to the pyres on the Dresden Altmarkt and the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres, as concerns both arrangements and the degree of cremation achieved, seem to be those applied by Lothes & Profé in their 1902 and 1903 experiments. Mattogno claims to have shown "above" that the application of the results obtained by Lothes and Profé to Sobibór is "abusive and senseless", though there is no such demonstration anywhere "above".

After announcing a later demonstration in point 75 of "huge errors" I’m supposed to have committed as concerns "the ratio of the carcass mass to the surface of the pit" (which I’ll address when I get to point 75), Mattogno repeats his arguments about the entrails and inner organs being taken out of the carcasses and gradually fed into the blaze. As we have seen above, this procedure was not adopted in all of Lothes & Profé’s experiments, and there is no indication that its impact on fuel requirements was more than marginal. So I can continue maintaining that Mattogno has produced no relevant arguments against using the results of Lothes & Profés experiments as an indicator of fuel consumption at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps.

The first sentence of Mattogno’s comment to my conclusion d) also deserves to be quoted in full, for it contains a collection of argumentative fallacies:
Point d) shows Muehlenkamp’s impressive gullibility. Based on mere testimonial statements, he considers Herbert Floss a kind of Deus ex machina for cremations (but wasn’t Blobel the “expert”?), without explaining where, when and how he would have achieved this extraordinary mastery with regard to cremation techniques.

"Based on mere testimonial statements" is a false dilemma, for testimonial statements are historical evidence in the real world, if not in the fantasy world that Mattogno (who, as I wrote earlier, doesn’t get to set the standards by which historical facts are established) lives in. The "Deus ex machina" remark is a straw-man, for I consider Floss to have been nothing more than what the evidence shows him to have been: someone who managed to implement a functioning cremation system at Treblinka, and presumably also at the other Aktion Reinhard(t) camps. The mention of Blobel is supposed to point to a contradiction in my argumentation, but Mattogno cannot point out where I proclaimed Blobel to have been "the expert"; what I wrote on p. 451 of the critique was that Blobel seems to have claimed the credit for a cremation system based on grids, the working out of which may not even have been his merit. As to the absence of an explanation "where, when and how" Floss "would have achieved this extraordinary mastery with regard to cremation techniques", this is another false dilemma, for it’s completely irrelevant to what the evidence shows Floss to have done at Treblinka through what prior experience he had acquired the necessary knowledge on how best to set up cremation grates. Trying to point out another supposed contradiction, Mattogno then remarks that "his knowledge was apparently not that extraordinary after all, considering that, according to Treblinka commandant Franz Stangl, he limited himself to bringing “the grid into the right position.”". Even that alone would have been instrumental to the success of cremation operations at Treblinka, according to the judgment at the Stangl trial[141] from which the reference to the "right position" is taken.

The "right position" was one in which the bodies of victims containing some fat were placed on the grate over the fire in such a manner that the fat dripped into the fire and char below, ignited there and helped sustain the cremation – the very rational and economic handling of the bodies’ fat that, according to Mattogno, was the reason, or one of the reasons, for the fuel economy achieved by Lothes & Profé. [142]

Still having produced no argument of substance against the use of Lothes & Profé’s experiments as an indicator of fuel consumption on the AR pyres, Mattogno then takes to stomping his feet:
His speculation (“there’s no reason”) is flawed and nonsensical, in fact I have presented many facts demonstrating the exact opposite. In conclusion, his claim that at Bełżec, Sobibór and Treblinka there existed “the possibility of a lower ratio” than the one resulting from Lothes’s and Profé’s experiments (0.56 : 1) is without foundation, and therefore he has not even made any dents on my arguments in favor of a 3.5 : 1 wood/corpse ratio.

Many facts demonstrating the opposite? Other than the repeated claim that bodies piled on top of one another would not burn as well as single bodies or bodies placed side by side (a possible but not a necessary consequence of piling up the bodies, according to Mattogno’s sources), I have seen nothing. And the second sentence is bereft of any logic: even if I had not supported the possibility of a lower fuel-to-carcass ratio than the one resulting from Lothes & Profé’s experiments, this would still be a long way from vindicating Mattogno’s claim (based, as we have seen, on a comparatively reduced number of examples including his own experiments, versus a larger number of examples pointing to lower ratios) of a fuel consumption 5.26 higher (if the tar or resin used as accelerants by Lothes & Profé are included in the fuel consumption calculations) than that achieved by Lothes & Profé in their less fuel-efficient experiments. It would be more accurate to say that Mattogno has not made any dents on my arguments in favor of a 0.67 wood/corpse ratio.

It may be that in a pyre consisting of piled-up bodies some corpses (namely those in the centre of the pyre) will not be exposed to air flow and heat in the same manner as bodies lying side by side on a grate, and that this leads to either a less thorough combustion of such bodies or to more fuel being required to achieve the same degree of combustion. But on the other hand, economies of scale reduce the amount of wood per kg of carcass required, by one third according to the Ausvetplan[143], which presumably does not consider multiple cremations on a scale so much in excess of individual cremations as the pyres of the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps, where such economies may have been even higher. If economies of scale and additional fuel consumption due to the pyre’s arrangement cancelled each other out, the ratio would still be 0.67 kg of wood per kg of corpse, without the corpses being less thoroughly combusted, or carbonized, than in Lothes & Profé’s experiments. Or it would be lower with a less thorough degree of combustion/carbonization, which would be compatible with the aforementioned evidence to what cremation remains left by the Aktion Reinhard(t) pyres looked like, even despite intensive post-cremation processing.

On p. 468 of the critique I had referred to cremation experiments carried out by arson investigator Bruce V. Ettling[144], particularly to one experiment in which a carcass, suspended on the seat springs of a car with a lot of char and ash underneath, had been largely consumed by a fire fed by the carcass’s own fat dripping onto the char, which acted like a candle wick and kept the fire burning. Ettling had concluded that that a carcass, and presumably also a human body, "can be rather thoroughly consumed by fire from its own fat", a necessary condition being that "the body be suspended in such a way that it is over the fire which is fed from the body fat". What is more, the results of this experiment reminded him of what he had read about the cremation procedure at Treblinka, in which an expert had "arranged the bodies on a rack with the corpses that appeared to contain some fat being placed on the bottom of the pile", after which a good fire beneath the rack had "caused fat to drip down and burn", and the bodies suspended over the fire fed by such fat had eventually been "reduced to ashes".

Mattogno’s first argument against Ettling’s observations and my reference thereto is nothing short of pathetic: he objects (p. 1382) that "the carcass in the experiment was “suspended on the seat,” not placed on top of a grid", even though Ettling had drawn a parallel between the seat springs on which the carcass was suspended over a fire fed by its own fat and the grid on which Treblinka corpses had been suspended over a fire fed by their own fat.

Mattogno’s next objection is that "the procedure presupposes that the body contains a normal amount of fat", whereas I’m supposed to have postulated "starved bodies with a very low fat content for the corpses at Bełżec and Treblinka". Actually I had considered a population that was underweight on average, without this excluding the presence of better-off individuals who were better fed than the average[145] and thus "appeared to contain some fat", as Ettling put it. These bodies would, to the extent they had not been consumed by the strong wood fire lit below them, continue burning in their own fat, and help the burning of corpses above them the way a burning or glowing log helps the burning of another placed on top of it.

Next Mattogno repeats his "air flow" mantra, unsupported by any quantitative data about how a restriction of the individual corpse’s exposure to air flow in a pyre would affect fuel requirements, and without a demonstration that restricted air flow would offset the "self-combustion" effect described by Ettling regarding one of his experiments, which reminded him of what he had read about Treblinka cremation procedures.

In Table 8.4 on p. 469 of the critique I presented as preliminary calculation of wood requirements to burn the deportees at Bełżec, Sobibór, Treblinka and Chełmno extermination camps, juxtaposed with MGK’s calculation of wood amounts. The calculation is preliminary in that it doesn’t take into account the effects of dehydration due to loss of water during the decomposition process on the one hand and the fat loss due to the underfed state on average of a majority of deportees on the other; further calculations later in the critique take into account the effects of dehydration and malnutrition. A revised version of Table 8.4, considering an average weight of 38 instead of 34 kg for deportees from ghettos (48 kg for adults, 18 kg for children aged 14 and under, with a 2:1 relation between the former and the latter), and the fuel-to-carcass ratio of Lothes & Profés less fuel-efficient 1902 experiments including the tar or resin used as accelerant, is presented below.

Table 2.4 – Revision of Table 8.4 (critique, p. 469)

Mattogno (p. 1383) furiously hollers that this table (or its predecessor) "is worthless and merely displays Muehlenkamp’s superficiality and incompetence"[146], then adds that "the Mokshda device is a cremation apparatus similar to – or the least different from – those of the Reinhardt camps, with a consumption of 2.14 kg of wood per kg of corpse". Apart from the fact that the Mokshda device’s consumption may well be below 2 kg of wood per kg of corpse, as pointed out above, Mattogno seems to have forgotten his earlier remark that a direct comparison between Lothes & Profé’s pyres and the pyres of Aktion Reinhard(t) would "only" make sense "if the corpses in the “Aktion Reinhardt” camps would have been put one by one onto the cremation grids" – which acknowledges that, as demonstrated above, Lothes & Profé pyres are, after the pyres on the Dresden Altmarkt, what most closely resembles the pyres of the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps.

After repeating his air flow mantra and announcing a later demonstration that "based on the body composition indicated by Muehlenkamp, the effective consumption would have been far bigger than his imaginative speculations", Mattogno then complains that I applied Lothes & Profé’s ratio to the "Chełmno ovens as well, even though the only performance results known to him with regard to the Feist apparatus, and quoted by me in my Chełmno study, are more than five times higher". This conveniently ignores the fact that the contraptions Mattogno compares to the Feist apparatus were applied only in the camp’s second phase (1944/45) and handled no more than 7,176 bodies, whereas in the camp’s first phase cremation was performed either in crematoria with chimneys or on grates resembling those at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps and accordingly the pyres of Lothes & Profé. As concerns the consumption of the Feist apparatus, it should be taken into account that its purpose was to completely reduce carcasses to ashes, and fuel consumption was calculated accordingly[147]. At the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps and as Chełmno, on the other hand, the purpose of cremation seems to have been only to carbonize the corpses to such a degree that they could be further reduced by laborious crushing and grinding, and the fuel consumption would accordingly be much lower. That's one of the reasons for the parallel to Lothes & Profé’s experiments which, judging by their aforementioned 1904 article, only strove to achieve a complete carbonization of the carcasses they burned. Ironically, this purpose would confirm Mattogno’s conjectures in his article about combustion experiments[148] – albeit to the disadvantage of his arguments about fuel consumption at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps.

That said, we turn to the effects that dehydration during the decomposition process on the one hand and malnutrition on the other had on fuel requirements.


[109] As I remarked in the blog "Jürgen Graf at his best" ([link]), the notoriously self-projecting and dishonest accusations and openly anti-Semitic invective that grace the magnum opus suggest that Mattogno and his co-authors have long given up on making "Revisionism" look like a reasonable alternative to what they call "orthodox" historiography, and are aware that they will be forever reduced to fishing for the applause of frustrated individuals who share their resentments and ideological convictions.
[110] Mattogno, "Combustion Experiments with Flesh and Animal Fat" ([link]). I’m referring to Mattogno’s considerations that culminate in the following passage: "For more reliable results, I conducted a number of experiments as described in the following sections."
[111] Which, as demonstrated above, was probably what was achieved both at the Aktion Reinhard(t) camps and in the Dresden Altmarkt cremations, so the experiments in question are an indicator of fuel consumption at these places even if no complete combustion was achieved.
[112] Dr. Lothes und Dr. Profé, "Zur unschädlichen Beseitigung von Thiercadavern auf dem Wege der Verbrennung", Berliner Thierärztliche Wochenschrift, Nr.37, 1902, pp.557-560. A translation and a scan of this article are available on the HC forum’s thread "About the Safe Removal of Animal Carcasses through Burning" ([link]).
[113] See critique, pp. 464f, as well as Part 1 Section 1 ([link]) and Section 2a ([link]) of this series.
[114] See Part 1, Section 1 of this series ([link]).
[115] Which is why horse meat is the kind of meat with the lowest fat content, see the article "Warum ist Pferdefleisch gesund?" ([link]).
[116] Quoted from W. Heepke, Die Kadaver-Vernichtungsanlagen, pp. 36f.
[117] See under [link].
[118] See the article’s translation under [link].
[119] Jacqueline I. McKinley, B. Tech, "In the Heat of the Pyre: Efficiency of Oxidation in Romano-British Cremations – Did it Really Matter?," in: Christopher W. Schmidt, Steven A. Symes (eds.), The Analysis of Burned Human Remains, Elsevier, London, 2008, p. 165.
[120] Regarding experiment nr. II L&P expressly mention that the carcass was burned with the viscera "in their natural place" ("mit den in natürlicher Lage befindlichen Eingeweiden verbrannt"). The carcass in experiment III was burned "in the manner described above" ("in der vorstehend bezeichneten Weise verbrannt"), which must be understood as a reference to the description of experiment II, meaning that in experiment III the entrails were also "in their natural place". As concerns experiment nr. I it is unclear from the wording ("das abgehäutete Cadaver eines Pferdes nebst Eingeweiden im Gewichte von 12 Centnern" - "the skinned carcass of a horse together with the viscera, weighing 12 cwt") whether the viscera were inside or outside the carcass, so I assume the latter.
[121] Online under [link].
[122] See critique, footnote 106 on p. 462. The link mentioned therein is no longer active. A cached version is available under [link].
[123] "Burning of Carcasses for Foot-and-Mouth Disease (Disease Investigation & Control - Treatment and Care)" ([link]).
[124] Image from the article "Foot and mouth disease outbreak: EU bans import of British livestock" ([link]).
[125] See the blog "On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (2)" ([link]).
[126] Available under [link].
[127] "Combustion Experiments with Flesh and Animal Fat" ([link])
[128] "Incinerating corpses on a grid is a rather inefficient method …" ([link])
[129] "Die unschädliche Beseitigung von Tierkadavern auf dem Wege der Verbrennung" Von Dr. Lothes und Dr. Profe\ Köln a. Rh. Fortschritte der Veterinär-Hygiene, Heft 12, März 1904, pp. 325-328. A translation of this article is available in the HC reference library’s thread "About the Safe Removal of Animal Carcasses through Burning" ([link]).
[130] The Last Jew, p. 88.
[131] Translation from Sara Berger Experten der Vernichtung, pp. 212f: "The decomposing corpses and parts of corpses were taken out of the mass graves with the help of the excavators and lain or thrown by the pits. Parts of corpses remaining in the pits had to be taken out by the »working Jews« with pitchforks or by hand. A group of inmates laid the corpses onto the litters, then they were taken by the »carriers« to the burning roasters at running pace. In order to have an overview over the number the corpses’ heads were hacked off so as to better count them. At the fire roasters the corpses were taken over by the »fire detachment«, which arranged the corpses in several layers on the roaster with the help of pitchforks and hooks and shoved them back and forth until they had been completely cremated". Berger refers to the following testimonies (footnote 119 on p. 551): Eliahu Rosenberg, 26.6.1970 (testimony at trial main proceedings) and 24.12.1947; Shlomo Hellmann, 21.12.1959; Abraham Lindwasser, 17.12.1964 (testimony at trial main proceedings); Abraham Goldfarb, 14.12.1964 (testimony at trial main proceedings); Henryk Reichmann, 12.10.1945; Pinchas Epstein, 25.9.1970 (testimony at trial main proceedings); Münzberger, 22.10.1964 (deposition at trial main proceedings); Grossmann, 5.7.1961; Leon Finkelsztein, 28.12.1945; Rajchman and Wiernik in their respective memoirs.
[132] Bruce V. Ettling, "Consumption of an Animal Carcass in a Fire", The Journal of Criminal Law, Criminology, and Police Science, Vol. 60, No. 1, Mar., 1969, pp.131-132. The article is quoted on p. 468 of the critique and completely transcribed in the HC reference library’s thread "Consumption of an Animal Carcass in a Fire" ([link]).
[133] According to the contractor hired to burn the poultry carcasses, the same were difficult to burn - more difficult than swine "because the swine have more fat and do not have feathers that can retain water". In this particular case, furthermore, the quality of the wood used left much to be desired: "rotted wood", "small diameter (brush)", "saturated wood", "too much metal". The management of the operation was also not the most efficient, leading MGK's source to point out that "Once the fire has reached operating temperatures, carcasses need to be loaded across the length of the fire box to avoid cooling of the fire by "clumps" of cool carcasses" - apparently this was not possible because the contractor didn't have "enough trained operators to load no more than 2 - 3 hours per shift." Regarding the source for this information, which Mattogno ignores, see note 122.
[134] Heinrich Köchel, "Leichenverbrennung im Freien", in: Vierteljahreshefte für freie Geschichtsforschung, 8 /4, 2004, pp. 427-432 (online under [link]).
[135] "On "Revisionist" error nitpicking (3)" ([link]).
[136] "Belzec or the Holocaust Controversy of Roberto Muehlenkamp" ([link])
[137] See note 88.
[138] Same blog as note 135.
[139] Shailaja Tripathi, "A thought for the dear departed", The Hindu, March 18, 2012 ([link]).
[140] "Burning bodies better", The Economist, June 18th 2007 ([link]).
[141] Justiz und NS Verbrechen (JuNSV), Bd. XXXIV (Urteil LG Düsseldorf vom 22.12.1970, 8 Ks 1/69; Lfd.Nr.746).
[142] The procedure was described as follows by Chil Rajchman (The Last Jew, pp. 85f.): "He orders that the first layer of corpses should consist of women, especially fat women, placed with their bellies on the rails. After that anything that arrives can be laid on top: men, women, children. A second layer is placed on top of the first, the pile growing narrower as it rises, up to a height of 2 metres."
[143] As note 126. If the ratio for individual cremation was 0.67, the ratio for multiple cremation would be ca. 0.45 kg of wood per kg of carcass.
[144] As note 132.
[145] See Part 1, Section 1 of this series ([link]), where I furthermore pointed out that Treblinka also received deportees that had not previously gone through the rigors of ghetto life and were thus not malnourished on average.
[146] If Mattogno’s repetitive ad hominem tirades are beginning to bore our readers, they are not alone. I also yawn whenever I read them.
[147] Dr. F. Puntigam, "Die unschädliche Beseitigung der Tierkadaver und der Fleischkonfiskate", p. in: Transations of the IXth International Veterinary Congress at the Hague, 13-19 September 1909: "Binnen 5—6 Stunden ist der Kadaver vollständig verascht." ("Within 5—6 hours the carcass is completely reduced to ashes."). The Transactions are available online under [link]; the quoted sentence, which is part of a description of the Feist apparatus, can be found at the end of the second paragraph on the left on p. 336 of the PDF. In his earlier response, Mattogno had claimed that the Feist apparatus had produced "merely the combustion of all soft tissues".
[148] Mattogno, "Combustion Experiments" (as note 110): "We have to state, though, that the aim of the experiments was only to render hygienically harmless the carcasses of animals that had died from infectious diseases; for this, a more or less complete carbonization was all that was required."


  1. minor correction: Ettling was an arson investigator not an 'arsonist'

  2. Many thanks, Roberto for your tireless efforts to rebutt Mattogno on this matter. Keep them coming and great to have you here! :-)

  3. Thanks everybody. I changed "arsonist" to "arson investigator" :-)

  4. So, after reading this I have a question......

    does Mattogno know anything about any subject?

  5. > does Mattogno know anything about any subject?

    Not sure, but he's certainly not an expert on cremation. He doesn't have any qualifications to be an expert. In fact, acc. to his own admission, for a long time he denied the possibility of burning corpses in pits (which is actually the most efficient of the "makeshift" methods) and only got convinced after reading a book by a German engineer. That shows he doesn't know what he is talking about. He's just a theoretical numbers-juggler and a fraud.

  6. Mattogno has mistranslated Polish, Russian and now German. Such an expert!

  7. I don't think the mistranslation is because he doesn't know enough German. It looks deliberate to me.

  8. While I don't know if he would specifically lie about this word knowing that he will be debunked (I prefer Hanlon's razor: stupidity over malice), it is clear that he is enough of a fanatic to make himself believe in his own bullshit, including the mistranslations of Prüfer, Tauber, Dragon, Edith Stein's grave plaque and L&P.

  9. >While I don't know if he would specifically lie about this word knowing that he will be debunked (I prefer Hanlon's razor: stupidity over malice), it is clear that he is enough of a fanatic to make himself believe in his own bullshit, including the mistranslations of Prüfer, Tauber, Dragon, Edith Stein's grave plaque and L&P.

    Don't forget the Reuther file note, that was a massive gaffe on his part and lead me to conclude that his command of German was far worse than he would have liked to think.


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