Incoming forced laborers on their way to Barracks 44 of Hermann Göring Werke in Niedernhart. Bindermichl-Stadlerstraße residential block in the background. Source: Lentia Publishing House (lentia-verlag.at)

Forced laborers march from Glimpfingerstraße to the barracks at Bindermichl; source: Lentia Publishing House (lentia-verlag.at)

Forced labor and its many faces

Area II

The second area focuses on phases of recruiting of foreign man-power, the various facets and instruments of despotism and suppression and the regimentation of work forces. Essential characteristics of forced labor in
National Socialism were punishment, discrimination and injury Even the death of the forced laborers was acceptable.

The inhuman system of forced labor under the NS regime categorized foreign workers into hierarchical groups that were often based on racist motives. The recruiting, housing, salaries and meals of the forced laborers depended on their position in a strictly defined hierarchical ranking system. Repression and arbitrary punishment were held in store, especially for the more unfortunate groups. Their working hours were increased and they were pressured into higher levels of performance. As the war progressed, those forced laborers who had volunteered for service in the German Reich were treated even more rigorously.

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