Report Reveals Holocaust Was Even More Horrific

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
March 2 2013 1:56 PM

Report Reveals the Holocaust Was Even More Horrific Than Previously Believed

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A woman walks by a large photo of the Auschwitz concentration camp at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

Photo by Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images

The full horror of the Holocaust is even more shocking than was believed. Experts who have dedicated their lives to documenting the Nazi atrocities were astounded when researches at the United States Holocaust Museum revealed there were around 42,500 Nazi ghettos and camps across Europe, reports the New York Times. That marks quite the increase from the 7,000 Nazi camps and ghettos that researchers expected to find when they began their work 13 years ago. The figure doesn’t just include death camps but, among others, also some 30,000 forced labor camps and 500 brothels filled with sex slaves.

“The numbers are so much higher than what we originally thought,” said Hartmut Berghoff, director of the German Historical Institute in Washington, D.C. Researchers now estimate that as many as 20 million people died or were imprisoned in the sites they have identified in an encyclopedia that is expected to have seven volumes by 2025.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.