We had a guided tour of Brendonk,Belgium (a concentration camp for political prisoners during WW II). The tour was conducted by the head of American University in Brussels. He had studied the camp and experiences of its prisoners extensively, aided by the input of a survivor. Therefore, the story was quite telling – and compelling.
The students were subdued and several of them, guys included, were struggling with the horror of this place, which was really one of the "better" ones because they only murdered a hundred people or so (no gas chamber; death was by shooting, hanging or torture).
The camp commander, his wife and dog are central to the camp experience. He was an uneducated, lower class person with few prospects until he had the opportunity to rise in prestige through the German army. He and his wife personally participated in torture of prisoners. They trained their dog to eat prisoners alive.
I think, perhaps, that this is the real horror of war: Its capacity to permit ordinary citizens to develop their most base instincts. Hearing the story, all I could wonder was, who would this couple have been under peaceful circumstances?