Moshe Garbarz (born on 28 Dec. 1913) was a Polish Jew who emigrated to France in 1929. He was deported from there to the Auschwitz Camp on 17 July 1942. In 1945, he was evacuated to Buchenwald, where he was liberated by U.S. troops in April.
In 1983, an autobiographic book titled Un Survivant (A Survivor) was published that had been written together with his son Elie. Within the context of the Holocaust, Moshe Garbarz’s claims about his activities during his stay at the Birkenau Camp are of interest. Since this testimony was written down 40 years after the event, the author’s memory was possibly contaminated by forty years of exposure to the ubiquitous orthodox narrative. It is also likely that this book was edited or to some degree possibly even ghostwritten by his son. In other words, this book has little if any probative value. Yet an analysis of this witness’s claims is interesting all the same.
Moshe Garbarz claims to have been employed at Birkenau as an inmate electrician. One morning in September 1942, he had to report with his colleagues to a new worksite, where he said he had to move floodlights on poles from one spot to another.
During that work, he claimed to have seen from a distance a hay barn closed on three side but open on the fourth, and in its vicinity three or four “pretty little country houses.” Garbarz’s subsequent narrative is a variation of claims about the so-called bunkers of Birkenau. Hence, before delving into Garbarz’s tale, an explanation is due. The two so-called bunkers of Birkenau were allegedly located outside the camp itself. However, these facilities did not consist of a collection of three or four country houses with a hay barn near them. If we follow the orthodox narrative, Bunker 1 and Bunker 2 were isolated houses half a kilometer away from each other. They supposedly had two undressing barracks near them, but if they could compare to anything Garbarz was familiar with, these would have been the kind of standard barracks he himself lived in while in Birkenau. His description is therefore completely invented, with no relation to either reality or the orthodox narrative.
After spotting these non-existing buildings, Garbarz next claimed that he saw completely naked people walking in groups of twenty, led by four men in white and two SS men. These twenty people entered one of the houses. Once inside, the door was shut. An SS man came with a can that looked like a pot of paint. Then he first heard a bang of some shutter, then a Hebrew prayer being said, and then very faint cries.
This scene has been freely invented as well. The orthodox narrative has it that men and women undressed in said barracks by the hundreds, not in groups of twenty. Then they walked from the barracks to the “bunker,” although not led by four people “in white,” but rather surrounded by a ring of guards. Finally, if Garbarz heard the dying people cry only very faintly, he most certainly would not have been able to hear someone saying a prayer. Imagine several persons who are locked inside a massive house, with all panic-proof and gastight, hence massive doors, windows and shutters bolted. Now these persons are saying a prayer. How much of it could be heard when standing a hundred meters away? Nothing. Again, Garbarz made this up.
Later, he claimed, he saw how dead bodies were carried on a cart running on tracks from the little house to a mass grave of some 2,000 cubic meters in volume. This grave had been dug overnight by a team of some 200 inmates. In other words: this massive grave appeared overnight out of nowhere. Again, this is highly unlikely. In addition, the mass graves visible on air photos show that the dimensions Garbarz gave – 20 to 30 m wide and 50 to 60 m long – are way off the mark. These graves were some 10 meters wide and 100 m long.
While Garbarz did his job of relocating the lamp post, he insisted that he waded in the victims’ blood, which had saturated the soil. Unfortunately for Garbarz, gassing victims do not bleed, and buried bodies do not saturate the soil with blood. Once more, we catch Garbarz making things up.
Finally, he claimed that bodies buried in mass graves had to be exhumed during the winter using pickaxes, since the ground was frozen, so they could be burned in the first crematorium becoming operational. However, the first crematorium at Birkenau became operational in March 1943. At that point in time, all mass graves filled in the summer of 1942 had long since been emptied. If we follow the orthodox narrative, that activity ended in early December 1942, and those bodies were cremated on pyres, not in cremation furnaces.
Garbarz’s tale has a true core, though. In August and September of 1942, the period of his experiences, the typhus epidemic in Auschwitz reached its catastrophic climax with hundreds of victims per day. During that time, the above-mentioned mass graves were created, and Garbarz may have witnessed some of it, spicing up his memories with disparate aspects taken from other sources.
In a video interview of 20 August 1991, Garbarz told of the practically non-existent hygiene facilities in Birkenau at that time, about the hopeless infestation of the detainees by lice, and that every day numerous corpses were dragged out of each barracks. Most of them were typhus victims, although Garbarz did not mention this important fact. Had he stuck to this ugly truth, we for once would have had a credible witness.
 Jewish Family and Children’s Services of San Francisco, Interview with Moishe Garbarz 8/20/1991; USHMM Oral History Archive, RG-50.477.0909; https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn516926.