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“Arbeit macht frei” appears at Detroit factory

“Arbeit macht frei” (work makes you free) — three of the most profane and chilling words ever written — has been posted on the overpass of the mostly abandoned Packard Plant on the city’s east side.

Arbeit Macht Frei

The phrase is a shocking and mocking reference to the infamous words posted over the entrance ways to a number of Nazi concentration camps during World War II, including Auschwitz, the horrific camp set up in Poland.

It’s unknown just who erected the signs on the massive and graffiti-scarred Packard plant on East Grand Boulevard near Mount Elliot.

The plant has become one of the city’s largest eyesores. It was built by the luxury automaker, which went out of business in 1958.

via Phrase made famous by Nazis appears on Packard Plant | The Detroit News | detroitnews.com.

February 5, 2013 Posted by | Auschwitz, News | , , | Leave a comment

Auschwitz ‘Arbeit macht frei’ sign re-assembled.

June 9, 2011 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Stolen Auschwitz sign to be re-erected

KRAKOW TOURS – A Swede and two Poles have received jail sentences for their involvement in the theft of the “Arbeit Macht Frei” Auschwitz sign.

A Krakow court sentenced Swede Anders Hoegstroem to two years and eight months for instigating the theft—a term he will serve in Sweden following an earlier plea bargain.

Prosecutors stated that the motive for the theft was financial. Hoegstroem claimed that another Swede induced him to organise the raid, though Polish authorities have found no evidence to support this.

The Polish pair, identified as Marcin A. and Andrzej S., were sentenced to up to two-and-a-half years in jail for their involvement in the theft. Andrzej S. is reported to have apologised to the court for the crime. Three other Poles were jailed in March 2010 for their part in the crime.

The December 2009 theft appalled Polish public opinion and sparked a massive manhunt across Europe. The “Arbeit Macht Frei” sign was recovered after just three days, crudely sliced into three pieces.

Conservators at the Auschwitz Museum announced Wednesday that they are preparing to re-erect the original sign after months of painstaking restoration work.

Full story Krakow Post

December 30, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Auschwitz sign theft – Charges at last

KRAKOW TOURS – It’s been nearly a year since the theft of the infamous “Arbiet Macht Frei” sign that had once greeted prisoners destined for the death camps at Auschwitz.

Though the sign was recoveredjust three days later, it wasn’t until yesterday that the final steps were taken so that those responsible could be brought to justice.

In March, three of the five Polish suspects involved in the theft of the sign were handed prison sentences ranging from 18 to 30 months. However, the alleged mastermind of the theft, Swede Anders Hoegstroem, a former neo-Nazi, as well as two Polish suspects, were only charged by Polish prosecutors on Thursday. Hoegstroem, who had been extradited to Poland in April, is now facing between 28 and 32 months for incitement to commit theft of the historic sign. One of the Poles, identified as Marcin A., was indicted with the same charge, while the final suspect, Andrzej S., has been charged with participating in the actual theft, though he pleaded not guilty.

Hoegstroem is expected to agree to a plea bargain to serve out his sentence in Sweden.

Photo courtesy Peter Harpley

November 26, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Auschwitz thief complains of maltreatment

KRAKOW TOURS – Anders Hoegstroem, the Swede who is accused of stealing the “Arbeit Macht Frei” sign from the Auschwitz museum in December 2009, has complained of bad conditions in the jail where he is currently being held.

Hoegstroem earlier passed on his grievances to a friend in Sweden, Bjoern Fries, a politician for the Social Democratic Party in Sweden. Fries announced the thief’s malcontentment on SVT, Sweden’s public broadcaster on Thursday evening.

“Hoegstroem has lost 15 kg since he was interred in Poland, and he also has to pay for his own water and personal hygiene products,” Fries said.

The politician is urging the Swedish authorities to look into the case, to check whether “such treatment is in line with the European justice system.”

Former neo-Nazi, and allegedly the mastermind behind the theft of the sign, Anders Hoegstroem is currently being held in a prison in the southern city of Krakow, along with two Polish suspects: Marcin A. and Andrzej S.

Investigations into the theft have been extended until December, with media reports stating that the case will probably be finished by the end of this year.

Hoegstroem has maintained his innocence in the case, which accuses him of the theft and also persuading the Poles to help him. If found guilty, he could face a 10 year sentence.

November 5, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Former inmate recalls daring escape from Auschwitz

Arbeit Macht Frei, image by Peter Harpley

KRAKOW TOURS – Close Window Print Story Former inmate recalls daring escape from Auschwitz By MONIKA SCISLOWSKA

Associated Press Writer, The Associated Press Tuesday, July 20, 2010 9:23 Poland

With every step toward the gate, Jerzy Bielecki was certain he would be shot. The day was July 21, 1944. Bielecki was walking in broad daylight down a pathway at Auschwitz, wearing a stolen SS uniform with his Jewish sweetheart Cyla Cybulska by his … Read More

via The perpetual view’s Blog

July 22, 2010 Posted by | Krakow Travel Advice, News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Extradition over Auschwitz theft

KRAKOW TOURS – A court in Stockholm has ruled that a Swedish man can be extradited to Poland to face trial over the theft of a sign from the Auschwitz death camp.

Investigators accuse Anders Hogstrom, 34, of instigating the theft of the infamous Arbeit Macht Frei sign from the camp gates last December.

The sign was recovered shortly afterwards, cut into three pieces.

Mr Hogstrom, 34, a former neo-Nazi leader, is likely to appeal against his extradition, his lawyer said.

Five Polish men have already been arrested over the theft.

The sign, which weighs 40kg (90lb), was half-unscrewed, half-torn from above the death camp’s gate.

The 5m (16ft) wrought iron sign – the words on which translate as “Work sets you free” – symbolises for many the atrocities of Nazi Germany.

The theft caused outrage in Israel, Poland and around the world. More than a million people – 90% of them Jews – were murdered by the Nazis at Auschwitz in occupied Poland during World War II.

March 11, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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