The doctor at war: McCrae; Millett; Mengele

John McCraeJohn MilletThe CryThe X 

July 1943:Hamburg bombed- 50,000 killed,

40,000 injured, 1,000,000 de-housed.

Allied Aircrew casualties, 1,000 killed-

86 bombers destroyed.As I spider down to the fire bombings

those women of Hamburg wait for me and one

more burning than the rest

will reach through my cheek with her claw,

her beak pierce my stomach, claw

scratch through my bladder, beak

fall again and again. She will rise,

offal in her teeth trailing behind her

Consider: Australia fought in WW2, and welcomed (those were the days) the traumatised refugees of Europe in great numbers afterwards. Hence there is a large cohort, that you will encounter clinically, of those elderly who suffered in various ways. Can you think of a medical condition that can in no way be associated with psychological trauma?

RC PotterPozieresConsider: Evil doctors in warDr Mengele is IN 

He is always smiling as

he climbs the metal stairs

to the experimental wing.


Awaiting him, the neat rows

of instruments beckon under

the arc lights. Today should

provide excellent results.


The condition of two sisters

sewn together last week.

The progress of those left

in the ice tanks overnight.


He has a productive day,

leaves promptly at six,

dispensing his standard

command to the orderlies.


Of the women who live,

put the younger ones aside.

The Kapos can have them


until they are finished.

But ensure they are back

in their cells, conscious,

by 0900 hours.


(by Ian McBryde) 

References and further reading

McBryde I (2004) Domain   Five Islands Press 

Lifton R (1986/2000) The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide  Basic Books 

Potter R C (   )  Past Hells Portals   Ginninderrra 

*Metcalf T (2003) Into the No Zone  Ginninderra


updated: 22/03/2010