Bergen-Belsen was a concentration camp in Germany located between the villages of Bergen and Belsen, hence forth its name. It was built in 1940 and was used as a prison to hold French and Belgium prisoners. The camp was changed into a concentration camp in 1943 and the first transportation of Jews to this camp was in July 1943. This camp was mainly used as a holding camp for the Jewish prisoners. They were put in this camp to slowly die of diseases and starvation. (Rebecca Weiner,1).
The Beast of Belsen.
His name was Josef Kramer and he was considered to be the meanest, most heartless person to ever step foot into Bergen Belsen. He was also the person who helped turn Bergen Belsen into a full-fledged concentration camp. However, he was not the first person to run Bergen Belsen. It's first commander was Adolf Haas. But in early 1944 Josef was put in charge.(Louis Bulow, 6) He had already been desensitized to the violence, death and bad things that happened at concentration camps because he had worked in camps just like Bergen Belsen since 1934. His latest job was at Auschwitz death camp. Some people say that this is what enabled him to be so cruel. (Klob Eberhard, 4) He beat women, kicked pregnant women in the stomach, and even shattered a woman's skull, when he was upset about something. Later that year there was a huge epidemic of diarrhea. His idea to stop this epidemic was to starve the people. He said, "if you don't eat you don't shit" (Abram L. Sachar 2). This shows us exactly how heartless this man really was. A year and a half later when the camp was liberated he was arrested, tried by the British court and executed by hanging for his crimes against the defenseless prisoners of Bergen Belsen. (Louis Bulow, 3).
Unlike some of the other camps such as Auschwitz Bergen Belsen did not have a gas chamber. It did have a military hospital because before it was a concentration camp it was indeed a prison and all prisons must have a hospital.