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Terezin, Czech Republic
By: Student Traveler (justin) 2011.12.28

Although Terezin's most infamous era was WWII when it served as a prison camp for enemies of the Reich (mainly Jews), it was originally built at the end of the 18th century as a strategic stronghold against invaders from th east. It quickly became apparent however, that Terezin was ineffective as a defensive structure, and it was adapted to serve mainly as a prison. The assassins of Archduke Ferdinand - the man whose death started WWI - were jailed and eventually died in Terezin. During WWII, the camp was first used as a prison for political prisoners of the SS, but was slowly converted into a concentration and transit camp for Jews, Romas, Communists, and homosexuals. Terezin was unique, however, in its designation as a prison for high profile prisoners. The abundance of artists, writers and intellectuals kept in Terezin would produce some of the war's most striking and stark images of like in a ZNazi concentration camp. All in all, 200,000 men, women and children would pass through Terezin's transit centers: 40,000 died at the camp, while 120,000 moved onto death camps in the east. Only 8,000 of the prisoners to pass through Terezin would survive the war. Buy the Let's Go Europe 2011

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