The Bus-Shelter Project
'Action T4 and the Holocaust'
There used to be a villa near today's Berlin Philharmonic in 1939 at Tiergartenstrasse 4 that served as the head office of the murder of mentally and physically handicapped persons.
The official name of the departments in the building were: "Zentralverrechnungsstelle Heil- und Pflegeanstalten" (Central Accounting Office for Sanatoriums and Care Institutions) and "Gemeinnützige Stiftung für Anstaltspflege" (Charitable Foundation for Care Institutions).
In reality they were deceptive terms for Euthanasia or as the Nazis put it: the "annihilation of worthless life", which ran under the code name "Action T4".
During researching I realised that there was a direct link between "Action T4" and the Holocaust:
At first the victims were murdered through injections. As this proved "inefficient" it was decided to switch to gassing, using diesel engine fumes. The same method was then adopted in Belzec, Treblinka and Sobibor in eastern Poland in 1942.
As a result of public protests by part of the German population, the Nazis were forced to cease the Action T4 programme in 1941. Subsequently numerous members of the Action T4 personnel were deployed in the so-called "final solution of the Jewish question" in Poland.
Among them was the former police officer Christian Wirth who had participated in the first trial gassings in the town of Brandenburg in 1939. He was then responsible for building the first gas chamber in Belzec in the spring of 1942 and parttook in the first trial gassing there.
Two glass plaques attached to the back wall of both bus shelters at the Berlin Philharmonic Hall relate to the context between Action T4 and the Holocaust since October, 26th, 2007.
|I would like to thank Hans Wall for his support without which this project could not have been realised.
Ronnie Golz, October 2007