With the recent discovery in early March of more than 42,200 new sites used by the Nazis as ghettos and labor, concentration and death camps, comes the redrawing of the map of World War II, the Holocaust and the Third Reich.
National Geographic reports that Geoffrey Megargee, one of the scholars who discovered the vast network of genocide, is now working on completely rewriting the book on the Holocaust. The planned seven-volume encyclopedia, which will be called “The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945,” will include the new sites and is expected to dramatically alter the previously understood landscape of the Holocaust.
"To document this on a map and see how the Holocaust affected every single community throughout Europe makes quite clear the scope of the Nazi regime's murder campaign," said Martin Dean, the editor of the encyclopedia.
Sites with gas chambers are not the only ones under consideration for inclusion on the new map, Megargee told National Geographic. "We're not just looking at sites directly involved with the Holocaust, but with the entire range of persecutory facilities that the Nazis and their allies ran," he told National Geographic.
To be included, a site must have housed at least 20 people and have been in operation for at least a month. Descriptions of the sites will be drawn from any possible records that still exist as well as survivor testimony.
Two of the seven volumes of the new encyclopedia have already been released, the first in June 2009, and the second in April 2012. It is being published by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington conjunction with Indiana University Press. According to Andrew Hollinger, Director of Communications at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in D.C., Volume 3 should be out by the middle of 2015, and Volume 4 at the end of 2016.
April 7-8 was Holocaust Remembrance Day in Israel, and April 7-13 marks Holocaust Remembrance Week in the U.S.
Maya covers the U.N., Europe, and the Middle East for IBTimes. She joined the company in July 2012 after having previously worked with DNAinfo.com and Gawker.