Not sure if this was talked about, but the scenes of the Big Wheel is ominously similar to moon vehicles just driving around aimlessly. Kubrick seems to be communicating something here.
This picture does not do it justice, but re-watch the scenes of the big wheel rolling around.
Interesting the name "Big Wheel" which can easily be a reference to Von Braun's "Big Wheel"
And while on the topic of Von Braun and NASA (which was created by the Nazis), why not look into the real meaning of the twins. Could it be a reference to the Nazi/US/UK eugenics programs that are also run out of NASA cloak of secrecy (including Area 51 and interspecies cloaning crapola):
The notorious doctor of Auschwitz, Josef Mengele, has become an enigma of the twentieth century. Mengele's handsome physical appearance, fastidious dress, and calm demeanor greatly contradicted his attraction to murder and gruesome experiments.
Mengele's seeming omnipresence at the ramp as well as his fascination with twins have incited images of a mad, evil monster. His ability to elude capture had increased his notoriety as well as given him a mystical and devious persona.
But in May 1943, Mengele entered Auschwitz as an educated, experienced, medical researcher. With funding for his experiments, he worked alongside some of the top medical researchers of the time. Anxious to make a name for himself, Mengele searched for the secrets of heredity. The Nazi ideal of the future would benefit from the help of genetics: if Aryan women could assuredly give birth to twins who were sure to be blond and blue eyed - then the future could be saved.
Mengele, as he learned while working for Professor Otmar Freiherr von Vershuer, believed that twins held these secrets. Auschwitz seemed the best location for such research because of the large number of available twins to use as specimens. The Ramp
Mengele took his turn as the selector on the ramp, but unlike most of the other selectors, he arrived sober. With a small flick of his finger or riding crop, a person would either be sent to the left or to the right, to the gas chamber or to hard labor. Mengele would get very excited when finding twins. The other SS who helped unload the transports had been given special instructions to find twins, dwarfs, giants, or anyone else with a unique hereditary trait like a club foot or heterochromia (each eye a different color). Mengele's seeming omnipresence on the ramp stemmed not only from his selection duty, but his additional appearance when it was not his turn as selector to ensure twins would not be missed.
As the unsuspecting people were herded off the train and ordered into separate lines, SS would shout "Zwillinge!" ("twins!"). Parents were forced to make a quick decision. Unsure of their situation, already being separated from family members when forced to form lines, seeing barbed wire, smelling an unfamiliar stench - was it good or bad to be a twin?
Some parents did announce their twins. Some relatives, friends, or neighbors would announce the twins. Some mothers tried to hide their twins. The SS and Mengele would search through the surging ranks of people in search of twins and anyone with unusual traits. While many twins were either announced or discovered, some sets of twins were successfully hidden and walked with their mother into the gas chamber.
Which was the right decision - to announce or not to announce their twins? I don't think there necessarily was one. Approximately three thousand twins were pulled from the masses on the ramp, most of them children; only around two hundred survived.
When the twins were found, they were taken away from their parents.
Once the SS guard knew we were twins, Miriam and I were taken away from our mother, without any warning or explanation.
Our screams fell on deaf ears. I remember looking back and seeing my mother's arms stretched out in despair as we were led away by a soldier.
That was the last time I saw her.1
As the twins were led away to be processed, their parents and family stayed on the ramp and went through selection. Occasionally, if the twins were very young Mengele would allow the mother to join her children in order for their health to be assured for the experiments. Processing
After the twins had been taken from their parents, they were taken to the showers. Since they were "Mengele's children," they were treated differently than other prisoners. Besides the obvious, suffering through medical experiments, the twins were often allowed to keep their hair and allowed to keep their own clothes.
The twins were then tattooed. They were given a number from a special sequence.2 They were then taken to the twin's barracks where they were required to fill out a form. The form asked for a brief history and basic measurements such as age and height. Many of the twins were too young to fill the form out by themselves so the Zwillingsvater ("Twin's Father") helped them. (This inmate was assigned to the job of taking care of the male twins.) Once the form was filled out, the twins were taken to Mengele. Mengele asked them more questions and looked for any unusual traits.Life for the Twins
Each morning, life for the twins began at six o'clock. The twins were required to report for roll call in front of their barracks no matter what the weather. After roll call, they ate a small breakfast. Then each morning, Mengele would appear for an inspection.
Mengele's presence did not necessarily connote fear in the children. He was often known to appear with pockets full of candy and chocolates, to pat them on the head, to talk with them, and sometimes even play. Many of the children, especially the younger ones, called him "Uncle Mengele."3
The twins were given brief instruction in makeshift "classes" and were sometimes even allowed to play soccer.4 The children were not required to do hard work and had jobs like being a messenger. Twins were also spared from punishments as well as from the frequent selections within the camp.
Conditions for the twins were one of the best in Auschwitz, until the trucks came to take them to the experiments. Experiments
Generally, every day, every twin had to have blood drawn.
Blood, often in large quantities, was drawn from twins' fingers and arms, and sometimes both their arms simultaneously. The youngest children, whose arms and hands were very small, suffered the most: Blood was drawn from their necks, a painful and frightening procedure.5
It was estimated that approximately ten cubic centimeters of blood was drawn daily.6
Besides having blood drawn, the twins were to undergo various medical experiments. Mengele kept his exact reasoning for his experiments a secret. Many of the twins that he experimented on weren't sure for what purpose the individual experiments were for nor what exactly what was being injected or done to them.
Each morning, the twins would wonder what was in store for them that day. Would their number be called? If yes, then the trucks would pick them up and take them to one of several laboratories. Measurements
The twins were forced to undress and lay next to each other. Then every detail of their anatomy was carefully examined, studied, and measured. What was the same was deemed to be hereditary and was different was deemed to be the result of the environment. These tests would last for several hours. Blood
Blood tests included mass transfusions of blood from one twin to another. Eyes
In attempts to fabricate blue eyes, drops or injections of chemicals would be put in the eyes. This often caused severe pain, infections, and temporary or permanent blindness. Shots and Diseases
Mysterious injections that caused severe pain. Injections into the spine and spinal taps with no anesthesia. Diseases, including typhus and tuberculosis, would be purposely given to one twin and not the other. When one died, the other was often killed to examine and compare the effects of the disease. Surgeries
Various surgeries without anesthesia including organ removal, castration, and amputations.
One day, my twin brother, Tibi, was taken away for some special experiments. Dr. Mengele had always been more interested in Tibi. I am not sure why - perhaps because he was the older twin.
Mengele made several operations on Tibi. One surgery on his spine left my brother paralyzed. He could not walk anymore. Then they took out his sexual organs. After the fourth operation, I did not see Tibi anymore.
I cannot tell you how I felt. It is impossible to put into words how I felt. They had taken away my father, my mother, my two older brothers - and now, my twin.7Death
Dr Miklos Nyiszli was Mengele's prisoner pathologist. The autopsies became the final experiment. Dr. Nyiszli performed autopsies on twins whom had died from the experiments or whom had been purposely killed just for after-death measurements and examination. Some of the twins had been stabbed with a needle that pierced their heart and then were injected with chloroform or phenol which caused near immediate blood coagulation and death.
Some of the organs, eyes, blood samples, and tissues would be sent to Verschuer for further study. Notes
1. Eva Mozes as quoted in Lucette Matalon Lagnado and Sheila Cohn Dekel, Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengle and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz (New York: William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1991) 56.
2. Robert Jay Lifton, The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide (BasicBooks, 1986) 348.
3. Lagnado, Children 68.
4. Lagnado, Children 67.
5. Lagnado, Children 62.
6. Lifton, Nazi 350.
7. Moshe Offer as quoted in Lagnado, Children 71. Bibliography
Lagnado, Lucette Matalon and Sheila Cohn Dekel. Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengle and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz. New York: William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1991.
Lifton, Robert Jay. The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide. BasicBooks, 1986.
Nyiszli, Dr. Miklos. Auschwitz: A Doctor's Eyewitness Account. 1960. New York: Arcade Publishing, 1993.
Yakov Liebermann is an elderly gentleman who is known as a Nazi hunter: he runs a center in Vienna that documents crimes against humanity perpetrated during the Holocaust. The waning interest of the Western nations in tracking down Nazi criminals has forced him to move the center to his lodgings.
Then, in September 1974, Liebermann receives a disturbing phone call from a young man who claims he has just finished eavesdropping on the so-called "Angel of Death," Dr. Josef Mengele, the concentration camp medical doctor who performed horrible experiments on camp victims during World War II. According to the young man, Mengele is activating the Kameradenwerk for a strange assignment: he is sending out six Nazis to kill 94 men, who share a few common traits. All men are civil servants, and all of them have to be killed on or about a certain date. All are 65 years old (at the time of their killing).
Before the young man can finish the conversation, there is a muffled sound of sudden action, followed by silence, and then the telephone line goes dead.
Liebermann hesitates about what to do: he gets so many prank calls. But what if what the young man said is true? He decides to try to investigate. It eventually transpires each of the 94 targets has a son aged 13, a clone of Adolf Hitler planted by Mengele. The killing of each civil servant father (married to a younger woman) is an attempt to mimic the death of Hitler's own father, with the hope of creating a new Führer for the Nazi movement. This was based on the hope that the Third Reich could develop again into a new superpower.
The steely hearted "Angel of Death", whose mission was to create a master race fit for the Third Reich, was the resident medic at Auschwitz from May 1943 until his flight in the face of the Red Army advance in January 1945.
His task was to carry out experiments to discover by what method of genetic quirk twins were produced – and then to artificially increase the Aryan birthrate for his master, Adolf Hitler.
Now, a historian claims, Mengele's notorious experiments may have borne fruit.
For years scientists have failed to discover why as many as one in five pregnancies in a small Brazilian town have resulted in twins – most of them blond haired and blue eyed.
But residents of Candido Godoi now claim that Mengele made repeated visits there in the early 1960s, posing at first as a vet but then offering medical treatment to the women of the town.
Shuttling between Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, he managed to evade justice before his death in 1979, but his dreams of a Nazi master race appeared unfulfilled.
In a new book, Mengele: the Angel of Death in South America, the Argentine historian Jorge Camarasa, a specialist in the post-war Nazi flight to South America, has painstakingly pieced together the Nazi doctor's mysterious later years.
After speaking to the townspeople of Candido Godoi, he is convinced that Mengele continued his genetic experiments with twins – with startling results.
He reveals how, after working with cattle farmers in Argentina to increase their stock, Mengele fled the country after fellow Nazi, Adolf Eichmann, was kidnapped by Israeli agents.
He claims that Mengele found refuge in the German enclave of Colonias Unidas, Paraguay, and from there, in 1963, began to make regular trips to another predominantly German community just over the border in Brazil – the farming community of Candido Godoi.
And, Mr Camaras claims, it was here that soon after the birthrate of twins began to spiral.
"I think Candido Godoi may have been Mengele's laboratory, where he finally managed to fulfil his dreams of creating a master race of blond haired, blue eyed Aryans," he said.
"There is testimony that he attended women, followed their pregnancies, treated them with new types of drugs and preparations, that he talked of artificial insemination in human beings, and that he continued working with animals, proclaiming that he was capable of getting cows to produce male twins."
The urbane German who arrived in Candido Godoi was remembered with fondness by many of the townspeople.
"He told us he was a vet," said Aloisi Finkler, a local farmer interviewed by Mr Camarasa. "He asked about illnesses we had among our animals, and told us not to worry, he could cure them. He appeared a cultured and dignified man."
Another farmer, Leonardo Boufler, said: "He went from farm to farm checking the animals. He checked them for TB, and injected those that were infected. He said he could carry out artificial insemination of cows and humans, which we thought impossible as in those days it was unheard of."
But the Nazi eugenicist did not concentrate on animals alone.
A former mayor and town doctor, Anencia Flores da Silva, set out to try to solve the town's mystery. He interviewed hundreds of people, and discovered one character who crept on cropping up: an itinerant medic calling himself Rudolph Weiss.
Dr da Silva said: "In the testimonies we collected we came across women who were treated by him, he appeared to be some sort of rural medic who went from house to house. He attended women who had varicose veins and gave them a potion which he carried in a bottle, or tablets which he brought with him. Sometimes he carried out dental work, and everyone remembers he used to take blood."
The people of Candido Godoi now largely accept that a Nazi war criminal was an inadvertent guest of theirs for several years in the early 1960s. The town's official crest shows two identical profiles and a road sign welcomes visitors to a "Farming Community and Land of the Twins". There is also a museum, the House of the Twins.
While the twins birthrate varies widely in different countries, it is typically about one in 80 pregnancies – a statistic that has left Mr Camarasa certain in his claim that Mengele was successfully pursuing his dreams of creating a master race, a real-life Boys from Brazil.
"Nobody knows for sure exactly what date Mengele arrived in Candido Godoi, but the first twins were born in 1963, the year in which we first hear reports of his presence," he said.