Night Questions and Answers
by Elie Wiesel

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What was Bela Katz forced to do once he was chosen for his strength in Night by Elie Wiesel?

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In Auschwitz, the only way to survive is through working. Those deemed unfit for work are immediately sent to their deaths in the gas chambers. So when the SS start looking for strong, sturdy men, Elie thinks it might be a good idea to volunteer. However, his father cautions him against this, thinking it best that they don't draw attention to themselves.

His instincts prove correct, as strong inmates such as Bela Katz are conscripted into the Sonderkommando, a unit of Jewish prisoners assigned to work in the camp crematoria. Like the other members of his unit, Bela is forced to carry the corpses of gas chamber victims and put them in the industrial-sized ovens, where their bodies will be disposed of. Not long after he starts his grisly new assignment, Bela is forced to undergo the traumatic experience of putting his father's dead body into the oven along with many others murdered in the gas chambers.

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