The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: imt/nca/supp-b/nca-sb-02-kaltenbrunner.10

Archive/File: imt/nca/supp-b/nca-sb-02-kaltenbrunner.10
Last-Modified: 1997/11/23

         Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression, Supplement B
                The Mass Execution at Lublin
     Excerpts from Testimony of Ernst Kaltenbrunner,
     taken at Nurnberg, Germany, 12 October 1945, 1545-
     1715, by Lt. Col. Smith W. Brookhart, IGD. Also
     present: Capt. Jesse F. Landrum, Reporter; Capt.
     Mark Priceman, Interpreter.
                                            [Page 1309]
Q. Did you know a Herr Morgan?

A. No.

Q. Inspector of concentration camps?

A. No, definitely not.

Q. Maybe it will help to refresh your recollection if I
recall to you a few of the facts that occurred late in the
autumn of 1943 as set forth in the report of Morgan
[document referred to did not form part of the prosecution
case as finally prepared and hence is not published in this
series.], following the visit to Lublin. You do recall the
time when several thousand Jews were slain in Lublin in one

A. No.

Q. And that their bodies were thereafter burned, there being
so many that it caused a light dust to lie over the whole
town and penetrate the air like smoke?

A. These three stories are such fabrications, especially
inasmuch as my person is concerned.

Q. It was during the period in which you were Chief of the
Reich Security Police.

A. As I said, these stories are pure inventions, and besides
your idea that I had anything to do with it in my official
capacity is erroneous.

Q. Referring again to the Lublin murders, the result of this
mass execution could not have escaped your attention because
as reported by Morgan after his inspection, it resulted in
losing much of the available labor supply. There were no
more people to work machines and in the handcraft shops. The
factories were left with a tremendous stock of raw material,
and the people in charge said that the order of the
execution came as a complete surprise.

A. I never saw any such report, and I never heard about

Q. The local SS Oberfuehrer Muszfeld, who was formerly a
confectioner, at Zuckerbaecker in the neighborhood of
Kassel, was in immediate charge of the butchery at Lublin,
and he told Morgan that he took credit for killing 20,000 by
his own hand. Was he known to you?

A. No.

Q. A man of those attainments would certainly be pretty well
known throughout the service, would he not?

A. He definitely did not belong to my staff.

                                                 [Page 1310]

Q. You say you received no reports of the effects of this
mass extermination because of the loss of manpower?

A. Definitely not. Even if this report were true, it is
obvious that such a report would not have been addressed to
me, but it would have been addressed to a person concerned
with manpower questions, for instance, Pohl, chief of the
concentration camps, or to Himmler, because Pohl carried on
production right inside the concentration camps. He was
interested in manpower questions. If I ever had received a
report like this, I would immediately have taken it to
Himmler or Hitler, and I would have declared to them that
things shouldn't be done this way.

Q. The message that came, ordering the mass execution, read
in the following terms: "By order of the RFSS [Reich Leader
of the SS (Himmler)], the Jewish company in the camp
Poniatowa is to be carried to its final conclusion."

A. I have never seen any such order.

Q. I will read you the description that Morgan gave as to
what took place: "The proceeding was always the same. The
night before the execution came the order to build very
hastily shelters in zig-zag against air raids. In the early
morning came troops and the execution began in these
trenches. The prisoners had to leave their work and to
attend in the neighborhood of the trenches. When their time
came, they had to undress and naked, pass through the trench
one after one in an infinite line. Coming to the first dead
the victim had to lie down on the dead body and then was
killed by a shot from a gun in the neck. This went on so
long until the trench was filled and the last person was
dead. Then the trenches were closed. The naked men had their
own trenches, and the women theirs. Children were there with
their mothers. None of the victims had been ill-treated
before executions. All passed in a methodical, silent way.
The troops formed only a cordon and had nothing to do with
it. There had been a few German police, and the most were
Ukrainian. On each place there were only two or three
killers who were placed above the trench. Behind them were
two or three other men who spent all their time charging
empty magazines. So the executions were going very quick,
and the responsibility was only in the hands of very few
men." Here is a second sentence: "It was the old, tried
system." Do you agree that it was an old tried system?

A. I am not familiar with the method.

Q. Further on, this report of Morgan's states that
extermination had been so complete that there was at last
nobody left to burn the cadavers, and it was only with great
difficulty that they

                                                 [Page 1311]
rounded up enough Russian prisoners of war to do the
burying. Did you know SS Sturmbannfuehrer Wippern, in
command at Lublin?

A. No.

Q. What became of all the money, jewelry, and gold of the
dead prisoners out of these camps?

A. I don't know.

Q. Didn't you ever receive any report as to what was done
with these valuables?

A. No.

Q. You disclaim any knowledge of this incident that took
place in the autumn of 1943 at Lublin?

A. Yes. It is impossible that this report had been sent to
me. I would have been to see Himmler or Hitler on the very
first day; on the very same day.

Q. When Morgan made inquiries into the reasons for the mass
executions, he was told by the local Sturmbannfuehrer that
this was top secret but that it had been ordered by Himmler
himself, after a personal report by Dr. Kaltenbrunner. How
do you account for that?

A. Absolutely impossible.

Q. What report did you ever make on the camp at Lublin, or
camps holding Jewish inmates elsewhere, that contained any
recommendation which would lead to extermination of these

A. I have never in my life made any such recommendations.

Q. That's all you have to say about it, is it?

A. Yes.

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.