POLAND -- Israelis who recently visited the Auschwitz concentration camp museum in Poland were shocked when they came across mist showers placed near the facilities entrance, according to multiple news sources.
The showers were placed to help visitors beat the heat, but some felt it was insensitive given the gas chamber association, reports Israeli news source Ynet News.
"As soon as I got off the bus I walked into the shower contraption," said Meyer Bolka, an Israeli visiting the museum to Ynet News. "I was in shock. It was a punch to the gut."
According to Bolka and reported by Ynet News, Israeli youths who were visiting the museum used the mist showers to cool down, but the placement of the showers made many older visitors angry.
"I think that in a place like this they should have thought about the type of connotation this would raise," Bolka said. "If you want to cool the people down, you need to find another solution. It was not a pleasant sight to see those sprinklers."
An estimated one million Jews, Gypsies, Soviet POWs and other Nazi prisoners were exterminated at the camp, many of them in gas chambers that prisoners were told were showers.
According to Ynet News, the Auschwitz museum management responded saying that there was no intention to hurt the feelings of the visitors, but rather to make their visit more pleasant on one of the hottest days of the year. And the museum will assess the continued placement going forward.
The Krakow Post reports Auschwitz tourism had over 250,000 people visiting in the first three months of 2015 alone, up 40 percent from the previous year.