The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Now this unity of command between S.S. and Police was not a mere matter of
the highest headquarters. It extended down to the operating level. The
Court will observe from the chart that the Higher S.S. and Police Leader in
each region, who was directly subordinate to Himmler, had under his command
both the Security Police, Sipo, and the regular uniformed police,
Ordnungspolizei; and also that these forces, Sipo and Orpo, were not only
under the command of the Higher S.S. and the Police Leader, but as
indicated by the blue line, were also under the command of the R.S.H.A.,
and the Department of the Ordnungspolizei and the S.S. Thus, you have
organisationally, a unity of command over the S.S. and the Police. This
organisation was not the only way by which unity was achieved. Unity of
personnel was also achieved. Vacancies occurring in the police forces were
filled by S.S. members. Police officials who were in the force were able to
join the S.S., and schools were operated by the S.S. for the police, as
well as for the S.S. officials.

These measures are described in Himmler's article " Organisation and
Obligations of the S.S. and the Police," our Document 1992-A-PS. They are
also described in an authoritative book on the Police, entitled, " The
German Police," the book published in 1940, written by Dr. Werner Best,
Ministerial Director in the Ministry of the Interior, and a department head
in the Security Police. It bears on its fly-leaf the imprimatur of the Nazi
Party, and the book is listed in the official list of National Socialist
bibliography. Chapter 7 from that book is our Document 1852-PS. I offer
this book in evidence as Exhibit USA 449.

Through this unity of organisation and personnel, the S.S. and the Police
became identified in structure and in activity. The resulting situation was
described in Best's book, which I have just offered in evidence, our
Document 1852-PS, as follows. I quote from Page 7 of that document,
paragraph 5 ; from the wiginal book, Page 95, paragraph 3:

     "Thus the S.S. and the Police form one unit, both in their structure
     and in their activity, although their individual organisations have
     not lost their true individuality and their position in the larger
     units of the Party and State administration which are concerned with
     other points of view."

Through the Police, the S.S. was in a position to carry out a large part of
the functions assigned to it. The working partnership between the Gestapo,
the Criminal Police and the S.D. under the direction of the Reichsfuehrer
S.S. resulted in the end in repressive and unrestrained police activity.
That will be dealt with in the case against the Gestapo. In considering
that evidence, the Tribunal will bear in mind that the Police activities
there shown were one aspect of S.S. functions, one part of the whole
criminal S.S. scheme. I shall not, therefore, consider here evidence
relating strictly to the police functions of the S.S.

Control over the police was not enough. Potential sources of opposition
could be tracked down by.the S.D. Suspects could be seized by the Criminal
Police and the Gestapo, but these means alone would not assure the complete
suppression of all opponents and potential opponents of the regime. For
this purpose, concentration camps were invented. The evidence already
presented to the Tribunal has shown what the concentration camp system

                                                                 [Page 148]

involved, and the final result of that system was graphically illustrated
in the moving pictures shown about io, days ago. The responsibility of the
S.S. in that system is a topic to which I now turn.

The first requirement for the camps was guard and administrative personnel.
Part-time volunteer members of the Allgerneine S.S. were originally
utilised as guards; but part-time volunteers could not adequately serve the
needs of the extensive, long-range programme that was planned. So beginning
in 1933 full-time professional guards units, the Death Head Units which I
have already described, were organised. During the war, members of the
General S.S. resumed the function of guarding camps, which they had
initially undertaken when the camps were created. The Tribunal will recall
the provisions of the Hitler order which I read a few moments ago,
directing the replacement of Death Head Units by General S.S. members in
the event of mobilisation. It is unnecessary to repeat the evidence of
wholesale brutality, torture and murder committed by S.S. guards. They were
not the sporadic crimes committed by irresponsible individuals, but a part
of a definite and calculated policy, a policy necessarily resulting from
S.S. philosophy, a policy which was carried out from the initial creation
of the camps.

Himmler bluntly stated the S.S. view as to the inmates of the camps in his
article, " Organisation and Obligations of the S.S. and the Police,"
Exhibit USA 439, our Document 1992-A-PS. I quote from Page 7 of the
translation, last paragraph; from Page 148 of the original, third

THE PRESIDENT: Did you say 439?

MAJOR FARR: It was Exhibit 439- It is our Document 1992-A-PS. I quote from
Page 7 of the translation, last paragraph:

     "It would be extremely instructive for everyone-some members of the
     Wehrmacht had already been able to do so-to inspect such a
     concentration camp. Once they have seen it, they are convinced of the
     fact that no one has been sent there unjustly ; that it is the offal
     of criminals and freaks. No better demonstration of the laws of in
     heritance and race, as set forth by Doctor Guett, exists than such a
     concentration camp. There you can find people with hydrocephalus,
     people who are cross-eyed, deformed, half-Jewish, and a number of
     racially inferior products. All that is assembled there. Of course, we
     distinguish between those inmates who are only there for a few months
     for the purpose of education, and those who are to stay for a very
     long time. On the whole, education consists of discipline, never of
     any kind of instruction on an ideological basis, for the prisoners
     have, for the most part, slave-like souls; and only very few people of
     real character can be found there."

Then, omitting the next two sentences, he continues with this striking

     "The discipline thus means order. The order begins with these people
     living in clean barracks. Such a thing can really only be accomplished
     by us Germans, hardly another nation would be as human as we are. The
     laundry is frequently changed. The people are taught to wash
     themselves twice daily, and to use a toothbrush, a thing with which
     most of them have been unfamiliar."

Having heard the evidence and seen the pictures as to conditions in
concentration camps, this Tribunal can appreciate how grim and savage that

                                                                 [Page 149]
callous jest was. He made no such pretence in his speech to his own
Grupperifuehrers at Posen, our Document 1919-PS, Exhibit USA 170. I quote
from Page 43 of the original, last paragraph; from Page 2 of the
translation, the first full paragraph. That is 1919-PS.

     "I do not believe the Communists could attempt any action, for their
     leading elements, like most criminals, are in our concentration camps.
     And here I must say this: that we shall bp able to see after the war
     what a blessing it was for Germany that, in spite of all the silly
     talk about humanitarianism, we imprisoned all this criminal sub
     stratum of the German people in concentration camps. I will answer for

But he is not here to answer.

Certainly there was no " silly humanitarianism " in the manner in which
S.S. men performed their tasks. Just as an illustration, I should like to
examine their conduct, not in 1944 or 1945, but in 1933- 1 have four
reports, relating to the deaths of four different inmates of the
concentration camp Dachau between 16th and 27th May, 1933. Each report is
signed by the Public Prosecutor of the District Court in Munich and is
addressed to the Public Prosecutor of the Supreme Court in Munich. These
four reports show that during that two-week period in 1933, at the time
when the concentration camps had barely started, S.S. men had murdered -- a
different guard each time -- an inmate of the camp.

Now, I do not want to take the time of the Tribunal to read that evidence
if it feels that it is a minor point. The significance of it is this: It is
just an illustration of the sort of thing that happened in the
concentration camps at the earliest possible date, in 1933. I am prepared
to offer those four reports in evidence and to quote from them, if the
Tribunal thinks that the point is not too insignificant.

THE PRESIDENT: Where are they?

MAJOR FARR: I have them here. I will offer them in evidence. The first is
our Document 641-PS. It is a report dated 1st June, 1933, and relates to
the death of Dr. Alfred Strauss, a prisoner in protective custody, in
Dachau. I offer it in evidence as Exhibit USA 450. I shall read a few
paragraphs from that report, beginning with paragraph one:

     "On 24th May, 1933, the 30-year-old, single, attomey-at-law, Dr.
     Alfred Strauss from Munich, who was in the concentration camp Dachau
     as a prisoner under protective custody, was killed by two pistol shots
     from S.S. man Johann Kantschuster who escorted him on a walk
     prescribed to him by the camp doctor, outside the fence part of the
     Kantschuster gives the following report:  `He himself had to urinate;
     Strauss proceeded on his way. Suddenly Strauss broke away towards the
     bushes located at a distance of about 6 m. from the line. When he
     (Kantschuster) noticed it, he fired two shots at the fugitive from a
     distance of about 8 m. ; whereupon Strauss collapsed dead.'
     On the same day, 24th May, 1933, a judicial inspection of the locality
     took place. The corpse of Strauss was lying at the edge of the wood.
     Leather slippers were on his feet. He wore a sock on one foot, while
     the other foot was bare, obviously because of an injury to it.
     Subsequently an autopsy was performed. Two bullets had entered the
     back of the head. Besides, the body showed several black and blue
     spots and also open wounds."

                                                                 [Page 150]
Passing now to the last paragraph of that report:

     "I have charged Kantschuster to-day with murder and have made
     application for the opening and execution of a judicial preliminary
     investigation as well as for the issuance of a warrant of arrest
     against him."

That is the first of the four reports. The significance is that you have
four murders one after the other, committed within a short space of time,
and in each instance, an official report by the camp commander or the guard
as to the cause of death, which was completely disproved by the facts.

The second report, a report dated 1st June, 1933, relates to the death of
Leonhard Hausmann, another prisoner in Dachau. It is our Document 642-PS,
and I offer it in evidence as Exhibit USA 451.

T H E P R E S I D E N T: I do not think you need read the details.

MAJOR FARR: I will offer it without reading it.

The third report which I shall offer is dated 22nd May, 1933. It relates to
the death of Louis Schloss, an inmate of Dachau, and is our Document
644-PS. I offer it in evidence as Exhibit USA 452.

The fourth document, our Document 645-PS, dated ist June, 1933, relates to
the death of Sebastian Nefzger, 'another Dachau prisoner. I offer this in
evidence as Exhibit USA 453.

These four murders, committed within the short space of two weeks in the
spring of 1933, each by a different S.S. guard, are merely examples of S.S.
activities in the camps at that very early date. Many similar examples from
that period and later periods could be produced.

Indeed, that sort of thing was officially encouraged. I call the Tribunal's
attention to the Disciplinary Regulation for the Dachau Concentration Camp,
our Document 778-PS, which has already been introduced in evidence as
Exhibit USA 247- 1 want to read the fourth paragraph of the introduction to
those rules, a passage which was not read when the document was originally
introduced. The fourth paragraph on the first page of the translation and
of the original is as follows:

     "Tolerance means weakness. In the light of this conception, punishment
     will be mercilessly handed out whenever the interests of the
     Fatherland warrant it. The fellow countryman who is decent but misled
     will never be affected by these regulations. But let it be a warning
     to the agitating politicians and intellectuals, regardless of which
     kind: Be on guard not to be caught, for otherwise it will be your neck
     and you will be hoist with your own petard."

Those regulations were issued in 1933 by S.S.-Fuehrer Eich, who, it is to
be noted, was the Commandant of the S.S.-Totenkopfverbinde.

Furnishing guard and administrative personnel was not the only function of
the S.S. with relation to the camps. The entire internal management of the
camps, including the use of prisoners, their housing, clothing, sanitary
conditions, the determination of their very right to live and the disposal
of their remains, was controlled by the S.S. Such management was first
vested in the Leader of the S.S. Death Head Units who had the title of
Inspector of the Concentration Camps. This official was originally in the
S.S. Hauptamt-represented on the chart by the second box from the left.
During the course of the war -- in March 1942 -- Control of concentration
camps was transferred to another of the departments of the S.S. Supreme

                                                                 [Page 151]
Command -- the S.S. Economic and Administration Department -- commonly
known as W.V.H.A. That department is indicated on the chart by the third
box from the left. The Court will note under the top box the break down
into " Concentration Camps " which in turn is broken down into " Prison,
Labour, Medical and Administration."

That change was announced in a letter to Himmler dated 3oth April, 1942,
from the Chief of W.V.H.A. The letter is our Document R-129 and it has
already been received in evidence as Exhibit USA 217. 1 shall not quote
from that letter now.
This shift of control to WN.H.A., the economic department of the S.S.,
coincided with a change in the basic purposes of the concentration camps.
Political and security reasons, which previously had been the ground for
confinement, were abandoned, and the camps were frankly made to serve the
slave-labour programme. The Tribunal will recall the evidence relating to
that programme which was presented last week by Mr. Dodd. I shall not deal
at any length with the matter again, except to summarise the principal
facts bearing on S.S. responsibility which were demonstrated by that

To satisfy the increased demands for manpower it was not enough to work the
inmates of the camp harder. More inmates had to be obtained. The S.S.,
through its police arm, was prepared to satisfy this demand, as through the
WN.H.A. it was prepared to work those who were already in the camp.

THE PRESIDENT: Have you got any figures you can give the Tribunal as to the
total numbers in the S.S. and the total numbers who were employed on
concentration camps ? If you gave us the total number of the S.S. and the
total number employed in concentration camps, we should see what the
proportion was.

MAJOR FARR: I think I can only give you the following figures. I earlier
quoted some figures from d'Alquen in his book published in 1939, in which
he said that the total strength of the General S.S. was about 240,000. That
is the General S.S., which was not at that time engaged in the guarding of
concentration camps. The Totenkopfverbiinde, the Death Head Units, at that
time, consisted of somethree or four regiments at the most. They were the
guards; so that of the personnel who were employed in actual guard duty
there were, in 1939, about three or four regiments.
The Court will recall that after the war had started, the TotenkopfverbInde
were no longer employed in that duty and that the members of the General
S.S. took it up. How many were employed is something that is difficult to
estimate. The concentration camp programme was constantly expanding and, of
course, as more camps were added more personnel was needed. I cannot give
the Tribunal the figures of the number of persons involved in guarding the
camps, but one of the matters I think significant is this: we have not only
guards, we have administrative personnel, we have the whole of the WN.H.A.
which, as I want to show by evidence, had complete control of the
management of the concentration camps. The members of the staff office,
WN.H.A., were derived from the General S.S. ; so you have on the one hand
the guard personnel, Death Head Units, up to 1939, and then you have after
1939 more guards from the Allgemeine S.S. You have, after 1939, more guards
from the General S.S. and also administrative personnel from W.V.H.A.

                                                                 [Page 152]
I have no figures showing how many persons were engaged. in one or another
phase of the concentration camp activities. You have, of course, the S.D.
and Security Police involved in it, in so far as they went out and seized
victims. You have W.V.H.A., the entire administrative personnel of that
section involved in it, in so far as they handled, administrative matters.

Some conception of the number of persons who must have been engaged in the
activity may be gained from noting the number of persons involved in a
camp. I have a document, a report by W.V.H.A., in August 1944, which
reports the number of prisoners who were then on hand in the camps and the
recent arrivals who were expected. That document is our Document I I 66-PS,
which I will now offer in evidence as Exhibit USA 458.

THE PRESIDENT: I do not think we had better go into that to-night. What
will you be dealing with to-morrow ?

MAJOR FARR: To-morrow, Sir, I intend to offer evidence showing how.
W.V.H.A. and other S.S. personnel were involved in the control of every
phase of the concentration camp programme. That is the first thing. The
second thing is to point out the role that the S.S. played in the
persecution of the Jews and their extermination, not with a view to
repeating the substantive evidence to show that such acts took place, but
to show how many components, how many parts of the organisation were
involved in that programme.

Then I shall consider the role of the S.S. with respect to Preparations for
Aggressive War and the Crimes Against Peace-a relatively brief dis
cussion-and then pass on to the role that the S.S. played in War Crimes and
Crimes Against Humanity, set out in Counts 3 and 4 of the Indictment, and
finally, the role of the S.S. in the colonisation programme.

THE PRESIDENT: Colonisation ?

MAJ OR FARR: That may be an unfortunate word. Perhaps I should have said
Germanisation programme, a programme of resettlement, evacuation,
colonisation, and exploitation of the conquered territories.

Those, I think, are the four main functions of the S.S. which remain to be
considered, and I shall endeavour not to go again into substantive crimes
which have already been shown to the Tribunal, but to try to show how
almost every department-in fact, every de~artment of the S.S. and every
component-was involved in one or more, and mostly more, of these crimes.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal hopes that you will be able to confine yourself
to the reading of evidence which is not cumulative.

MAJOR FARR: I have that in mind and I do not intend to do anything more
than to show the figures and components of the S.S. which were involved in
various programmes.


     (The Tribunal adjourned until 1000 hours on 20th December, 1945)

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