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Pustków, Podkarpackie Voivodeship

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'''Pustków''' {{IPAc-pl|'|p|u|s|t|k|u|f}} is a [[village]] in the administrative district of [[Gmina Dębica]], within [[Dębica County]], [[Subcarpathian Voivodeship]], in south-eastern Poland. It lies approximately {{convert|12|km|mi|0|abbr=off}} north-east of [[Dębica]] and {{convert|39|km|mi|0|abbr=on}} west of the regional capital [[Rzeszów]].<ref name="TERYT">{{cite web |url= |title=Central Statistical Office (GUS) &ndash; TERYT (National Register of Territorial Land Apportionment Journal) |date=2008-06-01 |language=Polish}}</ref> The settlement is nearly synonymous with the adjacent [[Pustków Osiedle]] [[housing estate]] built in the 1930s for emploees of the mining explosives factory of the [[Central Industrial Region]].<ref name="Sztetl">{{cite web | url=,historia-miejscowosci/ | title=Pustków. Lokalizacja. Historia. | publisher=[[Muzeum Historii Żydów Polskich]] '''' | dateyear=2013 | accessdate={{nobreak|12 August 2013}}}}</ref> Total area of Pustków – the largest village in [[Gmina]] Dębica – is {{convert|2,285|ha}} with 2,925 residents (2003); while the area of Pustków Osiedle – the smallest one – is {{convert|150|ha}} with comparable number of 2,727 residents in an urban setting.<ref name="R.A.R.R.">{{cite web | url= | title=Gmina Debica. Plan rozwoju lokalnego | publisher=Rzeszowska Agencja Rozwoju Regionalnego | date=June 2004 | accessdate=12 August 2013 | author=R.A.R.R. | page=6 | language=Polish}}</ref>
==World War II==
Locals who lived in the vicinity were evicted already in mid-1940.<ref name="Heidelager" /> The [[:de:SS-Truppenübungsplatz Heidelager|''SS TruppenÜbungsPlatz "Heidelager"'']] (German, for Heidelager Military Training Base), as it was known eventually, was set up {{nobreak|north-east}} of [[Dębica]] not far from [[Blizna]] using slave labor from the neighboring concentration camp located beneath Królowa Góra mountain,<ref>{{cite web | url= | title=Pustków. The Almost Forgotten Death Camp | publisher=JewishGen, Yizkor Book Project | dateyear=2013 | accessdate=12 August 2013 | author=William Leibner}}</ref> which held 7,000 Jews, 5,000 Soviet POWs, and 3,000 Poles (most of them annihilated before July 1944).<ref name="Poligon">{{cite web | url= | title=Poligon - Blizna | publisher=Bizna | work=Teren obozu zaglady w Pustkowie | dateyear=2013 | accessdate=12 August 2013 | author=Staff writer | language=Polish }}</ref> The training range was in use since the fall of 1941 under the command of ''SS Oberführer'' Werner von Schele.<ref name="Heidelager" /> The title was adjusted from the original ''SS TruppenÜbungsPlatz "Ostpolen"'' on August 25, 1943. The last commandant of the training base was ''SS Oberführer'' Bernhardt Voss until the summer of 1944.<ref name="Heidelager" />
The facility resembled a small city with its own narrow gauge railroad, some 3,600 men of different nationalities, cinemas, dining halls, dozens of villas, a newsletter, even a camp brothel staffed by female prisoners from the slave-labor camp nearby, and the hunting parties for the high-ranking officers. This is where the [[Galizien Division]] came into existence. The range was visited by ''[[Reichsführer-SS]]'' [[Heinrich Himmler]] on September 28, 1943, and abandoned in the summer of 1944 ahead of the Soviet advance.<ref name="Heidelager" />