The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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My colleague, Colonel Pokrovsky, has already denounced the
absurdity of these so-called "special instructions" and I
therefore do not consider it necessary to dwell on this
passage. I continue:-

  "It is therefore absolutely essential, when dealing with
  them, to exercise the greatest caution and prudence, and
  to nourish the deepest suspicions."

The following directives were issued to the guard over the
Soviet prisoners :-

Firstly, ruthless action at the slightest sign of resistance
or disobedience. Merciless use of firearms to break any
resistance. Escaping soldiers to be shot immediately,
without challenge, with firm intent to hit. "Without
challenge", is characteristic.

I omit the two following paragraphs and quote the second
part, sub-paragraph 3 of the memorandum, which your Honours
will find on Page 153, paragraph 2 of the document book.
From this sub-paragraph I quote 3 lines:-

  "Kindness is out of place, even when dealing with
  assiduous and obedient prisoners of war. They will
  ascribe it to weakness and draw their own conclusions."

I omit sub-paragraph 4 and end my quotation from this
document on sub-paragraph 5 of the memorandum. Your Honours
will find this passage on Page 153, last paragraph of the
document book.

  "5. Never must the apparent inoffensiveness of the
  Bolshevik prisoner of war tempt you to deviate from the
  above-mentioned instructions."

A very short time ago, I quoted sub-paragraph 4 of the
memorandum, regarding the utilisation of the labour of
Soviet prisoners allotted to the industries. It stated that
the requirements respecting billets for the Soviet prisoners
should, from the viewpoint of comfort, be of "the lowest
possible level". The meaning of this will be clear to your
Honours from a report of the Chief of Supplies and Equipment
of the Army, dated 17th October, 1941, addressed to the
Acting Corps Commanders and to the Administrative
Authorities of Military Districts.

I submit this document as Exhibit USSR 422. This, too, is
presented in the original and I beg that it be entered as
documentary evidence into the records. It was issued in
Berlin and dated as far back as 17th October, 1941. I quote
one paragraph of the text. Your Honours will find this
paragraph on Page 154 of the document book. I quote :-

  "Subject: Quarters for Soviet Prisoners of War.
  At a conference held on 19 September, 1941, at the office
  of the Chief of Supplies and Equipment of the Army, it
  was decided that by the construction of several tiers of
  wooden bunks, in lieu of bedsteads, an R.A.D. (Reich
  Labour Service) barracks for 150 prisoners, could be
  converted according to specifications for Soviet
  Prisoners' mass-barracks, to hold 840 prisoners."

                                                  [Page 315]

I shall not quote the remainder of this document, since I
consider this paragraph sufficiently clear in itself.

I request the Tribunal to accept in evidence two documents
which are also presented in the original. They testify to
the fact that the extermination, in the camp, of Soviet
prisoners of war was practised for political reasons.

I shall first submit, as Exhibit USSR 462, an order
addressed to Camp No. 60. The document is in the original
and I request that it be added to the records as evidence.
Your Honours will find the paragraph which I wish to quote
on Page 155 of the document book.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will adjourn now.

(A recess was taken.)

COLONEL SMIRNOV: I shall quote one passage only of the
document already submitted. The passage which I ask the
permission of the Tribunal to read is on Page 155, sub-
paragraph 4 of the order:-

  "Routine Procedure at the Shooting or Serious Wounding of
  a Prisoner of War.
  Every case of shooting or serious wounding of a prisoner
  of war should be reported as a special casualty. If you
  are dealing with English, French, Belgian or American
  prisoners of war you should also act in accordance with
  instructions of the Supreme Command, Code No. " f "-24."

This order was dated 2nd August, 1943.

On 5 November, 1943, however, another order followed which
changed even this procedure where the Soviet prisoners of
war were concerned. I request the Tribunal to accept in
evidence the document which I am submitting as No. 433,
pertaining to Camp No. 86. From this document I quote one
paragraph only, i.e., paragraph 12:-

  "The Shooting of Soviet Prisoners of War (Judicial
  The shooting of Soviet prisoners of war and other fatal
  accidents need no longer be reported to Prisoner of War
  Commander as an 'Unusual Casualty'."

In certain cases, the High Command of the German Armed
Forces agreed to the payment of a miserably small sum for
the work done by the prisoners of war, but here, too, the
Soviet prisoners of war were treated twice as badly as the
prisoners of other nationalities. To confirm this, I request
the Tribunal to accept in evidence the directive of the High
Command of the German Armed Forces dated 1 March, 1944. The
document will be submitted as Exhibit USSR 4271 request that
the Tribunal attach it to the documentation of the case as
evidence. From this document I shall quote two sentences
only. These sentences, your Honours will find on Page 274 of
the document book:-

  "Prisoners of war, working all day, will receive for one
  full working day the following basic pay:-
  Non-Soviet Prisoners of War - RM 0,70.
  Soviet Prisoners of War - RM 0,35."

(The second sentence is at the end of the document, on Page
275 of the document book, last paragraph):-

  "The minimum daily pay, for non-Soviet prisoners, will be
  RM 0,20, and for Soviet prisoners of war RM 0,10."

Here I end my quotation from this document.

If other prisoners received from the German fascist
murderers the right to a few breaths of fresh air per day,
the Soviet people were deprived of even this privilege.

                                                  [Page 316]

I request the Tribunal to accept in evidence an original
order, Exhibit USSR 424, referring to Camp No. 44. 1 request
the permission of the Tribunal to quote one sentence from
paragraph 7, entitled "Walks for Prisoners of War".

  "In special cases, when prisoners of war, engaged on
  work, have their living quarters at the same place where
  they work and therefore have no access to the open air,
  they should be allowed out into the fresh air in order to
  maintain their working strength."

I further request the Tribunal to accept as evidence the
original order addressed to Camp No. 46. This document is
submitted as Exhibit USSR 425. I would remind the Tribunal
that the preceding order "Walks for Prisoners of War" was
listed under sub-paragraph 7. I cite one sentence from sub-
paragraph 10 of Order No. 46. This sub-paragraph 10 is also
entitled "Walks for Prisoners of War" and the basis for this
sub-paragraph is order No. 1259, Part 5 of the Chief of the
Section for Prisoner of War Affairs, dated 2 June, 1943. I
quote one sentence:-

  "Supplementary to sub-paragraph 7 of the order addressed
  to Camp No. 44, dated 8 June, 1943, it is pointed out
  that the order does not apply to Soviet Prisoners of

I further request the Tribunal to accept in evidence the
original announcement of the Labour Administrator Marisch
Schonberg. This announcement concerns prisoners of war in
regard to their employment on agricultural work. I quote two
sentences from this document. The passage which I have asked
permission to quote is on Page 160 of the document book. I
begin the quotation:-
  "The replacement of 104 English prisoners of war from
  Labour Brigade for Prisoners of War E 351, currently
  employed in the Heinrichsthal Paper Mills, by 160 Soviet
  prisoners of war, has been rendered necessary by the
  recently arisen labour shortage. An additional allocation
  of English prisoners, to raise the number to the required
  figure of 160, is impossible, since after the last check-
  up on camp conditions, undertaken a few months ago by
  competent Wehrmacht authorities, it was decided that
  billets in the camp were only sufficient for 104 English
  prisoners of war, whereas the same space would
  accommodate 160 Russian prisoners of war without any
  difficulties whatsoever."

I request your Honour's permission to quote one more
document, namely: "Directive No. 8 regarding this camp",
dated 7 May, 1942. It is entitled "The Utilisation of Soviet
Prisoners of War for Work".

I submit this document in the original as Exhibit USSR 126,
and I request that it be added as evidence to the records of
the Tribunal.

I quote the section entitled "Measures for the restoration
of full working capacity:-

  "The Soviet prisoners of war are, almost without
  exception, in a state of acute malnutrition, which
  currently renders them unfit for a normal output of

The General Staff of the German Armed Forces was
particularly concerned with two questions: (1) blankets for
Soviet prisoners of war and (2) in what form should the
mercilessly murdered Soviet victims of the concentration
camps be buried. Both questions found their solution in one
document. I submit it to the Tribunal as Exhibit USSR 429
and request that it be added as evidence to the

                                                  [Page 317]

records. Your Honours will find it on Page 162 of the
document book. This is a directive of the 8th Military
District, dated 28 October, 1941. I begin the quotation:-

  "Re: Soviet-Russian Prisoners of War. The following
  arrangements were decided on during a conference of the
  First - Blankets. The Soviet-Russians will receive paper
  blankets, which they will have to manufacture themselves,
  in the form of quilts, from paper tissue, fitted with
  light-weight paper and similar material. The material
  will be placed at the disposal of the O.K.W."

The second part, as your Honours already know, is as

  The heading reads: "Burial of Soviet-Russians.
  Soviet prisoners of war are to be buried naked, without a
  coffin, wrapped in packing paper. Coffins will only be
  used for transports. In the working gangs the burial will
  be attended to by the competent authorities. Burial
  expenses will be met by the competent Stalag for
  prisoners of war. The stripping of the bodies will be
  done by the camp guards. Signed by order of

It was not only the administration of the military district
that was concerned with the methods for burying Soviet
prisoners of war; the Ministry of the Interior was also
concerned with this question, and an urgent letter was
addressed to the camp specially marked "Not for publication
in the Press even in excerpts". I request the Tribunal to
accept this document in evidence as Exhibit USSR 430. The
members of the Tribunal can find this passage on Page 276 of
the document book. I quote five sentences from this fairly
voluminous document:-

  "As regards the transport of the bodies and the provision
  of vehicles, the Wehrmacht should be contacted. For
  transport and burial a coffin is not necessary. The
  bodies should be completely wrapped up in paper,
  preferably in oiled paper, tarpaulin, corrugated paper or
  some other suitable material. Both transportation and
  burial should be done unostentatiously. When many corpses
  come in at the same time, burial should take place in a
  common grave. The corpses should be laid at the usual
  depth, side by side, not overlaying each other. As a site
  for the burial, a remote part of the cemetery should be
  chosen. Any burial service and any decoration of the
  graves should be disallowed."

Omitting the next sentence:-

  "It is necessary to keep expenses as low as possible."

But even in the special organisations of German fascism,
specially created for the extermination of human life, the
criminals still continued in their policy of racial and
political discrimination. Actually, this discrimination
could mean one thing only, namely, that one part of the camp
prisoners came to their inevitable end - death - more
rapidly than the other part. The criminals even tried to
make the inevitable end more terrible for those of their
victims whom they - following the Nazi man-hating "theories"
- called "sub-humans", or whom they considered to be capable
of active resistance.

I request the permission of the Tribunal to read into the
record one paragraph from a document already submitted as
Exhibit USSR 415. This is a report of the Extraordinary
State Commission on the "Crimes at Lamsdorf Camp" and the
quotation will testify to the extent of the criminal
Hitlerite activities. It concludes the presentation of
evidence regarding this camp. Your Honours will find the
passage in question on Page 146 of the document book,
paragraph 5.

  "According to the findings of the Special Commission,
  during the existence of the Lamsdorf camp the Germans
  tortured to death more than 100,000 Soviet prisoners of
  war. Most of these died in the mines, in the various,
                                                  [Page 318]
  industrial enterprises, or during transportation back to
  the camp. Some were crushed to death in the dugouts, many
  were killed en route during the evacuation of the camp.
  Forty thousand prisoners of war died in the Lamsdorf Camp

Mr. President, the Soviet Prosecution begs to present one
more witness, Dr. Kivelisha - he is a physician and his
evidence is particularly important in establishing that
there existed a special regime in the camps for Soviet
prisoners of war. The Soviet Prosecution requests your
permission to question this witness.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, Colonel Smimov.

(Dr. Eugene Alexandrovich Kivelisha took the stand.)


Q. What is your name?

A. Kivelisha, Eugene Alexandrovich.

Q. Will you repeat this oath after me?

I - and then state your name - a citizen of the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics, summoned as witness in this
trial, do promise and swear, in the presence of the Court,
to tell the Court nothing but the truth about everything I
know in regard to this case.

(The witness repeated the oath.)

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down, if you wish.


Q. Will you spell your name? Will you spell your surname?

A. K-I-V-E-L-I-S-H-A.


Q. What was your position in the ranks of the Red Army at
the time of the attack on the Soviet Union by Hitlerite
Germany ?

A. At the time of the attack on the Soviet Union by
Hitlerite Germany I was junior Physician in the 305th
Regiment of the 44th Rifle Division.

Q. Did your unit of that regiment take part in battles
against the Germans?

A. Yes, we participated in the battles from the first day of
the war.

Q. On what date and under what circumstances were you
captured by the Germans?

A. I was captured by the Germans on 9 August, 1941, in the
district of the City of Uman, of the Kirovograd region. I
was captured at the moment when our unit and two Russian
armies, to which out unit belonged, were surrounded by the
Germans after prolonged fighting.

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