Between two Streams. A Diary from Bergen-Belsen Abel J. Herzberg
At the height of the Holocaust it was Nazi policy to preserve small groups of “privileged” Jews for possible use in exchanges with Allied-held German civilians. Held in the special “Sternlager” at Bergen-Belsen their “privilege” amounted to being kept alive rather than gassed – although 70 per cent of the internees perished before the camp’s liberation, victims of disease, starvation, beatings or sheer despair.
One such privileged internee – Abel Herzberg, a Dutch lawyer and writer – managed in the hell of Bergen-Belsen to keep a diary which chronicles the reality of daily existence in the camp, with its grotesquely dehumanizing conditions and the magnanimity and pettiness which they engendered. He describes the relations between inmates and the civic code of the internees.