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THE KARL STREIBEL SIGNATURE
by Lubomyr Prytulak

First posted on   www.xoxol.org/traw/streibel.html   04-Aug-2010 02:36pm PST, last revised 05-Aug-2010 08:54am PST

TWO PATCHES

(1) Z. Bazilevskaya Patches the first of two "б"s in "Собибор"

Within the article Bazilevskaya's Revenge, the section titled Three Anomalies Within Bazilevskaya's Cyrillic "Sobibor" ("Собибор") discusses the Bazilevskaya "patching" of the first "б" in Собибор, which is to say returning to it after it had been completed in order to improve it by writing a "patch" over it.  However, it was noticed that the patch was gratuitous (Bazilevskaya's original б was perfectly legible and normal, and in need of no improvement), and that it was ostentatious (it drew attention to itself by making that first б more different from her second б, and indeed from every other б that she had been observed to have written, than it had been prior to patching).

DISPLAY 1.  Bazilevskaya patches the first б in Собибор, the original vertical stem of her б identified by pointer [3], and her patch identified by pointer [4].

MGB translator Z. Bazilevskaya patches the first of the two b's in her handwritten Sobibor on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393  




(2) Karl Streibel Patches the first of two "e"s in "Streibel"

Display 2 introduces a second patch that is to be found on the Demjanjuk 1393 Trawniki Card, in the first "e" in the signature of SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl "Streibel", which generates several hypotheses concerning what that patch aimed to accomplish.

Display 2.  The first "e" in the Streibel signature is patched.  From the outside surface of the Demjanjuk 1393 ID Card, the entire card being available also in pdf.

SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel patches the first of the two e's in his handwritten Streibel on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393

Hypothesis 1:  Karl Streibel is a nitpicking perfectionist

The hypothesis that Karl Streibel is a nitpicking perfectionist can be tested by examining the 33 Streibel signatures that can be found in the position reserved for the "SS-Hauptsturmführer" on the available copies of 48 Trawniki Cards, which signatures are reproduced below under the heading Thirty-Three Streibel Signatures Found Among The Forty-Eight Trawniki ID Cards, and where it will be discovered that Streibel never patched any other signature.  The Streibel signature on the Demjanjuk 1393 card contains the only known Streibel patch in existence, and it is a striking coincidence that it appears on a card that is already notorious for its extraordinary collection of unique features.

A more plausible view of Karl Streibel than that he is a nitpicking perfectionist, then, is that he is a senior official among whose lowliest and most tedious of duties is that of signing thousands of cards of Untermenschen occupying the bottommost rank in the entire German military machine, for which reason Streibel signs Trawniki cards expeditiously and perfunctorily, and finds better uses for his time than lingering over these signatures for the purpose of improving them.

Hypothesis 2:  Karl Streibel was prompted to correct feathering

One might suppose that it was the unusual feathering of the "e" in question, as Streibel first wrote it, which prompted him to take the unusual step of patching.

As used here, "feathering" describes the creation of a line segment that is lighter than others, and which even for a time almost disappears, or even completely disappears, because of reduced ink flow produced within certain strokes perhaps by a reduced pressure from the hand of the writer, or by the changed angle of the nib, or by a changed direction of motion.  The right-hand portion of the original, unpatched "e" loop, this argument goes, was so feathered, which is to say was so faint, that it did over a stretch completely disappear, and this high degree of feathering is what might have prompted Karl Streibel to that uncharacteristic-of-him patching.

However, if we look back at Display 2, we notice that in the very same signature that patches a feathered "e" can also be found an "S" at the beginning and an "l" at the end, both of which are also strongly feathered, and yet neither of which triggered a patch.  But if Streibel was governed by a compulsion to patch feathering, then he might be expected to patch all three instances of feathering that were evident in his signature, and not just one of the three.

Furthermore, as can be seen in Display 3, Streibel's other signatures often exhibit feathering in various locations which is reliably left unpatched, thereby strengthening the conclusion that feathering was not a stimulus that triggered Streibel to patch, but rather was a commonplace occurrence beneath his notice, or perhaps even a calligraphic embellishment of which he was vain.

Of particular interest in Display 3 is the Rjasanow 2077 "Streibel" because its first "e" is feathered in the same way as the first "e" in Card 1393, which is to say by a loss of the right-hand portion of its loop, and yet which Streibel neglects to patch.

Display 3.  Prominent instances of feathering in the Streibel signature which have been left unpatched.
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Bondarenko Trawniki ID Card 1926
Bondarenko 1926
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Rjasanow Trawniki ID Card 2077
Rjasanow 2077
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Ribak Trawniki ID Card 2077
Ribak 2246
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Kobylezkyj Trawniki ID Card 3349
Kobylezkyj 3349
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Popeliuk Trawniki ID Card 3427
Popeliuk 3427
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Nahorniak Trawniki ID Card 3440
Nahorniak 3440
Prominent instance of feathering which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Kuryliw Trawniki ID Card 3596
Kuryliw 3596


Hypothesis 3:  Karl Streibel worried that his first "e", lacking the right-hand wall of its loop, might be narrow enough to be mistaken for an "i"

However, the second "e" in Display 2 is narrow, and encloses little or no white space within its loop, and so could conceivably be mistaken for an "i", and yet Streibel neglects to patch it.  And Display 4 shows in Ostafijtschuk 3695 the first "e" in "Streibel" also narrow, and in Agejews 1653 the second "e" even narrower, either of which might conceivably be mistaken for an "i", were it dotted, and yet Streibel leves these two "e"s similarly unpatched. 

It seems that Streibel does not seem worried enough about his narrow "e"s being mistaken for "i"s to patch them.

Display 4.  "E"s narrow enough to be "i"s are left unpatched.
Prominent instance of an e narrow enough to be an i which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Ostafijtschuk Trawniki ID Card 3695
Ostafijtschuk 3695
Prominent instance of an e narrow enough to be an i which Karl Streibel has left unpatched in his signature on Agejews Trawniki ID Card 1653
Agejews 1653


Furthermore, the idea of Karl Streibel taking precautions to keep his "e"s distinguishable from his "i"s is preposterous for at least the following four reasons.

  1. Streibel's "i"s were always dotted, which served to distinguish the two.

  2. Streibel's first "e" was always wider than the following "i", serving also to distinguish the two.

  3. Any Nazi official inspecting the card would know that there existed an SS-Hauptsturmführer Streibel, and that there did not exist any SS-Hauptsturmführer Striibel.

  4. Even a German unacquainted with any names of any Nazi official would nevertheless recognize "Streibel" as a plausible German surname, and "Striibel" as implausible.

As Karl Streibel would have had at least these four reasons to expect that no reader of his signature could mistake his first "e" for an "i", distinguishing that first "e" with a patch could not have been a motive for him to patch it.

Hypothesis 4:  Karl Streibel noticed that his first "e" looked remarkably different from his second "e", and was prompted to attenuate the difference between the two

Had Streibel's patch merely retraced his original path, the resulting patched "e" might have ended up resembling his second "e" more.  However, Streibel did not merely darken the path of his original "e" by retracing it, but rather added a patch which digressed beyond his existing-but-faint loop so as to expand the area enclosed, a patch which palpably deviated from colinearity with the original "e", making it more different from the second "e" than it had been before, and in fact making this Demjanjuk 1393 first "e" the most deviant "e" among the 66 that he wrote in his 33 signatures, and thereby making this Streibel signature the most deviant among these 33 signatures.

Conclusions Concerning Patching

The Demjanjuk 1393 card contains two patches, one in the Bazilevskaya translation and one in the Streibel signature.  No other instance of Bazilevskaya patching has been discovered on any other card.  And of the 33 Streibel signatures on Trawniki ID Cards, none but Demjanjuk 1393 contains a patch.  And, miraculously, both of these rare events occur on the same card, a card already notorious for its irregularities.

It had been noted above that the Bazilevskaya patch was both gratuitous and ostentatious, and the same description applies to the Streibel patch.  The Streibel patch was gratuitous because that first "e" was perfectly legible and could not have been mistaken for any other letter, and it was ostentatious because it made that first "e" not just different from the second "e" in the signature, it made it different from any of the other 65 "e"s that Streibel wrote in his 33 signatures.  Instead of the patch improving that first "e", it worsened it.  The patch made no attempt to darken the feathering by retracing it, but rather set out on a palpably too-clockwise path, and then rejoined the original on a palpably too-clockwise path as well.  The patch was created not to make the signature more like other Streibel signatures, but to call attention to the fact that it has been altered so as to make it less like other Streibel signatures.  The patch cries out to be noticed.  But why would Streibel have taken the trouble to perform an action that was not only needless but flamboyant, not only uncalled for in helping authenticate the signature, but actually working to discredit it?  It seems that he wouldn't.

Two hypotheses discussed in Bazilevskaya's Revenge offer themselves to explain the appearance of these two patches on the Demjanjuk card.  The Red Herring Hypothesis supposes that Kremlin forgers cluttered the Demjanjuk 1393 card with fake irregularities indicative of nothing so as to distract attention from genuine irregularities indicative of forgery.  And the Bazilevskaya's Revenge Hypothesis supposes that MGB translator Z. Bazilevskaya deliberately implanted coded messages in order to abort the Demjanjuk persecution at whose birth she had been commanded to assist.

The Bazilevskaya's Revenge Hypothesis, more specifically, is imagined here to consist of Bazilevskaya introducing a gratuitous and ostentatious patch into the first of the two "e"s in "Streibel" to discredit that signature, and then introduced a similarly gratuitous and ostentatious patch into the first of the two бs in Собибор to identify herself as the originator of gratuitous and ostentatious patches.  In each case, Bazilevskaya chose to patch the first of a pair of letters within a word to facilitate comparison of the patched letter with its unpatched counterpart.  Patching the first instance of a letter that occurred twice in the same word was her invitation to have some future examiner wonder that if the first instance was patched, why not also the second?

But, ultimately, speculation as to cause of these two parallel manifestations of patching, while valuable and obligatory, creates only a hypothesis.  What is not merely a hypothesis is that two instances of gratuitous and ostentatious patching within the Demjanjuk 1393 Trawniki Card render an already-exceptional card even more exceptional, augmenting the conclusion that the card is a Kremlin forgery.


ONE FREE-FLOATING-SQUIGGLE

Display 2 above shows a squiggle above the second "e" in "Streibel" that some observers have taken to be a printed lowercase "k", called here the "free-floating-k".  As a step toward evaluating the allegation that the free-floating-squiggle is a free-floating-k, the 21 "k"s on the card, printed or typed or rubber-stamped, both uppercase and lowercase, have been numbered in Display 5.

Display 5.  Twenty-one "k"s, typed or printed or rubber-stamped, on the Demjanjuk 1393 Trawniki ID Card.   Outside  Inside  pdf

The first five of the twenty-one k's on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393 are on the outside surface
The last sixteen of the twenty-one k's on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393 are on the inside surface


The closer comparison that is facilitated in Display 6, however, reveals that the free-floating-squiggle is quite unlike any of the 21 known "k"s found on the card, and in fact is not a "k" at all: its vertical stem seems bent toward the left, the segment in the four-o'clock position bottoms out too high and juts too far to the right.

Display 6.  The 21 typed or printed or rubber-stamped "k"s on the Demjanjuk 1393 Trawniki Card, with the free-floating-squiggle reproduced at the beginning of each line to facilitate comparison.
Free-floating-squiggle on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
 
First variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
4

6

8

10

11

12

 
Second variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
1

13

14

15

16

17

 
Third variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
5

7

19

20

21

 
Fourth variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
2

 
Fifth variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
3

 
Sixth variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
9
    Seventh variety of letter k on the John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
18


Dotting A Narrow "e" Hypothesis

But if the free-floating-squiggle is not a free-floating-k, then what is it?

It may be the erroneous dotting of the second "e" in Streibel, under the mistaken impression that it was an as-yet-undotted "i", a dotting quickly recognized as mistaken and just as quickly blotted, rendering it fainter than the "e" underneath.  That second "e" is narrow enough, and devoid enough of enclosed white space, to be mistaken for an "i".

This interpretation is supported by the observation that the free-floating-squiggle contains a segment concave toward the right, almost resembling the letter "c", and that often so does the dot above the "i" in other Streibel signatures, as can be appreciated in Display 7.

Perhaps the same mistake was responsible also for the free-floating-squiggle visible in Swesdun 2112, which can be viewed in Display 7, a free-floating-squiggle which also hovers above the second Streibel "e", and where that second "e" is also closed as if it were an "i", and where that free-floating squiggle also contains a "c"-like segment which is concave toward the right.  But if this is a mistakenly-placed dot, then who is more likely to have misplaced it there, Karl Streibel or a Kremlin forger?  Did Karl Streibel, having placed his first dot over his "i", then proceed to notice that his second "e" enclosed no white space, and thus mistook it for a second "i" and dotted it?  Or, rather, did a Kremlin forger, with weak familiarity with the German language or German spelling or the names of German officials, asked to imitate a given Streibel signature, pehaps one with a narrow second "e", make that mistake?

Display 7.  Dots over the Streibel "i" often consist of, or merely include, a "c"-like segment concave toward the right.

Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Kabirow Trawniki ID Card 1337
Kabirow 1337
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Bandarenko Trawniki ID Card1759
Bandarenko 1759
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Bondarenko Trawniki ID Card 1926
Bondarenko 1926
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Slowjagin Trawniki ID Card 1999
Slowjagin 1999
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Schtscherbinin Trawniki ID Card 2061
Schtscherbinin 2061
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Swesdun Trawniki ID Card 2112
Swesdun 2112
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Ribak Trawniki ID Card 2246
Ribak 2246
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Melnitschuk Trawniki ID Card 3555
Melnitschuk 3555
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Moros Trawniki ID Card 3683
Moros 3683
Instance of a c-like segment in the dot over the i on the Tschornopyskij Trawniki ID Card 3684
Tschornopyskij 3684


As with any hypothesis based on meager data, alternatives to the DOTTING A NARROW "E" HYPOTHESIS can readily be imagined, alternatives that are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

IT JUST HAPPENED HYPOTHESIS: The free-floating-k resulted from the accidental contact of a pen with the card, which was immediately blotted.  Were the free-floating-squiggle the only irregularity on the Demjanjuk 1393 Card, then of course this would be the explanation of choice.  Given the large number of irregularities on that card, however, attributing them all to accident fails to explain why so many accidents accumulated on a single card.

PROFOUND INCOMPETENCE HYPOTHESIS: Kremlin forging labs are manned by incompetents quite capable of producing any imaginable stream of errors, among which can be found the mistaking of narrow "e"s for "i"s.

THE RED HERRING HYPOTHESIS: Kremlin forgers deliberately blanketed the card with fake flaws indicative of nothing in order to draw attention away from the real flaws indicative of forgery.

BAZILEVSKAYA'S REVENGE HYPOTHESIS: MGB Translator Z. Bazilevskaya introduced irregularities in order to sabotage the Kremlin persecution of John Demjanjuk.

The least plausible of all hypotheses, though, is that the free-floating-squiggle is a free-floating-k for which no motive, and no method of creation, can be imagined.


Thirty-Three Streibel Signatures Found Among The Forty-Eight Trawniki ID Cards

The signatures relied upon are as follows.

High-resolution image of the SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of John Demjanjuk Trawniki ID Card 1393
Demjanjuk 1393 Outside panel    pdf
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Titow Trawniki ID Card 1040
Titow 1040
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Sidortschuk Trawniki ID Card 1329
Sidortschuk 1329
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Kabirow Trawniki ID Card 1337
Kabirow 1337
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Odartschenko Trawniki ID Card 1573
Odartschenko 1573
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Agejews Trawniki ID Card 1653
Agejews 1653
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Bandarenko Trawniki ID Card 1759
Bandarenko 1759
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Bondarenko Trawniki ID Card 1926
Bondarenko 1926
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Gamaschow Trawniki ID Card 1991
Gamaschow 1991
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Slowjagin Trawniki ID Card 1999
Slowjagin 1999
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Butenko Trawniki ID Card 2059
Butenko 2059
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Schtscherbinin Trawniki ID Card 2061
Schtscherbinin 2061
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Rjasanow Trawniki ID Card 2077
Rjasanow 2077
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Djatschuk Trawniki ID Card 2091
Djatschuk 2091
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Swesdun Trawniki ID Card 2112
Swesdun 2112
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Polijuchno Trawniki ID Card 2128
Polijuchno 2128
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Ribak Trawniki ID Card 2246
Ribak 2246
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Solanchukow Trawniki ID Card 2537
Solanchukow 2537
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Masuk Trawniki ID Card 3183
Masuk 3183
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Turjanski Trawniki ID Card 3213
Turjanski 3213
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Sydorak Trawniki ID Card 3312
Sydorak 3312
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Pidletentschuk Trawniki ID Card 3323
Pidletentschuk 3323
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Kobylezkyj Trawniki ID Card 3349
Kobylezkyj 3349
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Popeliuk Trawniki ID Card 3427
Popeliuk 3427
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Nahorniak Trawniki ID Card 3440
Nahorniak 3440
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Szkurhan Trawniki ID Card 3443
Szkurhan 3443
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Melnitschuk Trawniki ID Card 3555
Melnitschuk 3555
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Dziombak Trawniki ID Card 3594
Dziombak 3594
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Kuryliw Trawniki ID Card 3596
Kuryliw 3596
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Kuschnir Trawniki ID Card 3659
Kuschnir 3659
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Moros Trawniki ID Card 3683
Moros 3683
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Tschornopyskij Trawniki ID Card 3684
Tschornopyskij 3684
SS-Hauptsturmführer Karl Streibel signature on the outside surface of Ostafijtschuk Trawniki ID Card 3695
Ostafijtschuk 3695



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