Eli Wiesel is a keen observer of human nature. He uses his skills to make certain assumptions about what his captors are expecting from "Jew Behavior." When his hands are badly blistered and cracking and in so much pain he determines that to go to his captors begging for help would only serve to set them thinking that he was groveling. It has also been his observation that the Jews who did this were shot or beaten and did not get the needed treatment. Instead he goes to the Nazi's and shows them his hands and lets the man know that he just wants some of the skin cut off so that his hands will allow him to go back to work. The Nazi's are thrown off by his behavior. Uncertain how to respond to him, they show him some degree of respect and treat his hands.
Wiesel was very smart at determining the behavior patterns of the Nazi's. His skills in behavior psychology helped him to continue to save his humanity and life.