Gas vans

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Gas vans are alleged vehicles equipped with homicidal gas chambers that cause death by carbon monoxide poisoning.


The gas van was invented in the Soviet Union in 1936, by Isay Berg, the head of the administrative and economic department of the NKVD of Moscow Oblast which suffocated batches of prisoners (Ukrainians during Holodomor)[1] with engine fumes in a camouflaged bread van while on the drive out to the mass graves at Butovo, where the prisoners were subsequently buried. According to Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:
I. D. Berg was ordered to carry out the decisions of the NKVD troika of Moscow Oblast, and Berg was decently carrying out this assignment: he was driving people to the executions by shooting. But, when in Moscow Oblast there came to be three troikas having their sessions simultaneously, the executioners could not cope with the load. They hit upon a solution: to strip the victims naked, to tie them up, plug their mouths and throw them into a closed truck, disguised from the outside as a bread van. During transportation the fuel gases went into the truck, and when delivered to the farthest [execution] ditch the arrestees were already dead.[2]

Gas vans using diesel engines were allegedly used during the Holocaust by the Einsatzgruppen behind the Eastern Front. They were allegedly also used in some Holocaust camps such as Chelmno (the alleged main killing method there) and Sajmište. Carbon monoxide (but not gas vans) was allegedly also used in homicidal gas chamber in several other camps.

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