History 27/01/20 Soviet “gas chambers”: a terrible invention chekist Isay Berg

In the twentieth century, people greatly improved methods of destruction of their own kind. One of the most monstrous inventions of totalitarian regimes resulted in a “vans” — vehicles in which prisoners were poisoned with exhaust gases. Few know that long before the Nazi “gas vans” to kill “enemies of the people” in this way thought of the Soviet NKVD, Isaiah Berg.

the Factory of death

In the 1930s the flywheel state of terror in one sixth of the land spun with increasing force. Countless threes carried the death penalty so much that KGB was becoming more difficult to bring them into execution.

In the suburbs firing squad of NKVD in 1937, he was forced to work “Stakhanov” pace. Residents of the area were sent to death for 3 of the NKVD Troika, and not one person, and immediately lists. Hundreds of people daily should take to Butovo, to bring to the shooting, and then bury the body. For example, in just one day — February 28, 1937 — on the ground lost their lives 562 people. Meanwhile, the “workers” at the executioners has not increased — the number of teams “rasstrelschikov” does not exceed 5-7 people. In this situation increased the risk that the crowd “suicide” a mutiny, take possession of the weapon and capture the polygon.

the Vans, “bread”

the Trouble continued until the head of administrative Department of the NKVD of the Moscow region Isay Berg, responsible for the execution of sentences did not come up with a solution. In those years, the KGB used to transport prisoners to the truck, outwardly indistinguishable from ordinary vans with a bakery. Masking solves 2 problems. First, no one knew about the real extent of repression, and second, citizens have the impression that the bakery is working at full power and in the country plenty of bread. Berg suggested to download sentenced to the trucks already stripped naked (the clothes and belongings of victims of the KGB are divided between). In the van could hold up to 50 people at once — they were bound and silenced with gags. But the main “innovation” was that the exhaust gases are withdrawn inside the car. In describing this procedure, Alexander Solzhenitsyn in his book “two Hundred years together” noted that “by far the moat” prisoners were brought already “ready”.

the suffering of the passengers of paddy wagons were particularly severe, when transportation occurred in the cold season. They died not only from carbon monoxide but also from hypothermia and distress. Even if the condemned survived on the road, their will was so broken that they obediently allowed to put yourself on your knees in front of the excavated trench. It often happens that before the execution of “enemies of the people” and more beat — like atrocities differed, for example, the security officer Boris Rhodes.

“Reward” executioner

Just after 2 years after the invention of the “gas chambers” the Lieutenant of state security, Isay Berg, shared the fate of those he sent to their deaths. There is a change of leadership of the internal Affairs bodies — the chair was already trying Yezhov Lavrenti Beria, and from the “old” cadres in the NKVD once again it was decided to get rid of. In this situation, the experiences and accomplishments Isai Davidovich, who was in the party since 1930 and had the badge “honorary security officer”, could not save him.

the Chief of AHO was arrested for a dirty trick against a colleague, and during the investigation a witness by the name of Karetnikov was mentioned by Berg in the number of members of the Trotskyist organization, supposedly acting in NKVD Moscow region. On the interrogation of facts regarding the invention from the gas chambers. Isaiah Berg did not deny that “organized the enforcement of sentences with the use of a motor vehicle”. However, this caveat was only a minor episode in the case — judge member of the KGB for “inhumanity” in those days, one even had not occurred. Isaiah Berg was shot as a “terrorist conspirator” 7 March 1939 and was buried in DEskom cemetery of the capital. In 1962, according to the site “Victims of political terror in the USSR” security officer”innovator” was rehabilitated by the Military Collegium of the Supreme court.

Timur Sagdiyev

© Russian Seven

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