Before 1939 the German Nazis had already opened six concentration camps in the German Reich. Dachau concentration camp near Munich 1933); Sachsenhausen near Berlin in northern Germany (1936); Buchenwald near Weimar in central Germany (1937); Flossenbürg in northeastern Bavaria near the 1937 Czech border (1938): Mauthausen, near Linz, Austria (1938), and Ravensbrück, a concentration camp for women, established in Brandenburg Province, southeast of Berlin (1939);
The Nazi Germans opened the newly constructed gas chambers and crematory IV at Auschwitz.
The entire village of Khatyn (now in Belarus) was burnt alive by members of the Schutzmannschaft Battalion 118. The Battalion was formed by the Nazis in 1942 in Kiev (now capital of Ukraine) with 500 volunteers in three companies. Later the battalion split away and was composed of Ukrainian nationalists and volunteers of POW camps that Soviets captured during Operation Barbarossa, headed by German commander Sturmbannführer Erich KörneSchutzmannschaft. The Battalion committed the most savage atrocities and war crimes during WW2. The Khatyn massacre (not to be confused with the Katyn Massacre of Polish officers at Smolensk) occurred in Khatyn, a village in Belaarus was the site of another atrocity. On March 22, 1943, the Battalion 118 filled a farmers barn with civilians from the village, set the barn on fire, and used a machine gun to mow down civilians who tried to escape the flames. The Schutzmannschaft Battalion 118 was chiefly responsible for the creation of German "dead zones". The dead zone policy involved exterminating communities suspected, or capable of aiding the Soviet partisans who had launched ambushes against Nazi forces in Belarus.