Bruno Israel was an ethnic German police officer with a Polish background. He was assigned to the Chełmno police in July/August 1944. Due to his cooperation with the German authorities during the war, he was arrested by the Poles after the war.
On 29 and 30 October 1945, he was interrogated by Polish investigative judge Władysław Bednarz. Evidently due to his cooperative attitude and Polish background, he was released shortly after his interrogation.
With regard to the Chełmno Camp, Israel stated that during his brief stay at the camp, two transports with 700-800 Jews arrived from the Łódź Ghetto at the Koło train station. Then the story gets bizarre. Israel asserted that the Jews were eventually gassed in gas vans, but the way this was done is utterly irrational:
- The Jews were picked up with trucks at the Koło train station and driven to the Chełmno Camp. At this point, if a plan to kill them in gas trucks existed, one would think that exactly these trucks were used for the transit from the train station to the camp. But no, these were normal trucks. Lots of fuel was spent to get the Jews alive to the camp, and the exhaust gas produced along the way was wasted.
- Once in the camp, the Jews were made to undress in a shack sporting a sign with the inscription “transit camp” (“Durchgangslager”). They were then told that they would take a shower inside a truck. Evidently to deceive them, they were all given a piece of soap, and then made to climb into a “special vehicle.” How anyone could believe such a tale is unfathomable.
- For Israel, the exhaust pipe went directly into the cargo box. The orthodox narrative insists instead that a flexible metal hose was used to connect the exhaust pipe to the cargo box.
- The victims inside the vehicle were gassed during transit to “the furnaces.” Once there, the dead bodies were thrown into the furnaces, where they burned “quickly.” However, forensic excavations have revealed the remains of only one field furnace at Chełmno. Furthermore, the cremation of bodies in such a primitive device takes many hours, which is the opposite of “quickly.”
- Israel insisted that the furnaces were demolished in late 1944, and all bricks and concrete debris removed. However, as just mentioned, plenty of concrete debris of one furnace was left in place.
- Israel mentioned that the Chełmno Camp had two gas vans plus “a third vehicle that was used to fumigate clothes.” He identified the photo of a damaged moving truck found on the grounds of the Ostrowski Company in Koło as being the fumigation truck. However, that truck was simply a moving truck, as Judge Bednarz himself concluded.