Concentration camp selfies results in global criticism

By Mieke Vlok
10 July 2014

There is a Facebook page called “With my besties at Auschwitz” which shares photographs of people in front of the Auschwitz concentration camp, where the Nazis killed more than a million Jewish prisoners during World War 2.

People taking selfies is so common these days no one gives them a second glance. But someone taking selfies in front of a memorial where more than a million people were murdered is enough to stop you in your tracks.

“With my besties at Auschwitz” is a Facebook page sharing photographs of people in front of the Auschwitz concentration camp, where the Nazis killed more than a million Jewish prisoners during World War 2.

The page originated in Israel and had more than 12 000 followers before it was shut down by the creator two days after starting up because it drew a lot of criticism, reports Elite Daily.

In the photographs teenagers are blowing kisses at the camera, showing playful peace signs and posing with their friends in front of crematoriums, on railway lines at the camp and with the Israeli flag draped around them.

The creator of the page added captions such as, “Babes, I’m keeping place for you on the bus to Treblinka” and, “Even here I’m absolutely stunning!”

Treblinka was a notorious death camp where prisoners were murdered in gas chambers.

According to Vocative most of the photographs were taken during school trips Israeli teenagers take to Poland every year.

The New Yorker reports the creator of the page drew severe criticism and that the page was labelled tasteless and disrespectful online.

“Six million Jews! You should be ashamed!” was a popular phrase of critics of the page.

The creator defended her decision to create the page. She told The New Yorker she created it as an absurd joke specifically because the photographs were so far-fetched.

She added that although she started the page as a joke, its popularity shows that young people often don’t grasp the impact of the Holocaust.

Many of the teens who’d shared the photographs on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram also removed their pictures.

“Who would have thought a joke between friends would result in such a sensation? the creator asked, according to Vocativ.

- Elite Daily, Vocativ, The New Yorker.

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