What Events Lead To The Two Hangings Wiesel Describes?

Updated 30 September, 2023
In his memoir Elie Wiesel describes two hangings, which shock him deeply. The first hanging happened soon after the camp was bombed by the Allies. A youth was executed for stealing some food. The second was a young boy hanged for collaborating against the Nazis.
Detailed answer:

In Night, author Elie Wiesel describes two hangings that were particularly troubling for him. For the most part, the prisoners are so used to death that it is a part of their lives, but these trouble many of them because they involve a youth and a child.
The first one happened soon after the camp was bombed by the Allies. A youth from Warsaw who had been in concentration camps for three years was brought before the other prisoners and led to the gallows. The head of the camp read aloud the verdict,
"In the name of Himmler...prisoner Number...stole during the alert...According to the law...paragraph...prisoner condemned to death. May this be a warning and an example to all prisoners".
So, he was hanged for stealing – most likely food – during the earlier bombing.
The second hanging involved the Oberkapo, who was Dutch and had over seven hundred prisoners working under him, and his pipel--a young boy who served him. Most pipel were hated because of their cruelty, but this one, like the Oberkapo, was well-loved by everyone. Both of them were to be hanged because awhile back, the electrical power building at Buna was blown to bits, and the Gestapo traced the action back to the Oberkapo and the boy. Both of them refused to talk even though they were tortured for weeks. The Oberkapo was eventually sent to Auschwitz and probably gassed, but the young boy was hanged in front of all the prisoners at Buna along with two other men, whose crimes we are not told. This was one of the worst horrors Elie Wiesel witnessed in the camps.

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