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                           of the
               International Military Tribunal
                           For The
             Trial of German Major War Criminals

               His Majesty's Stationery Office
                                                   [Page 60]
                   Persecution of the Jews

The persecution of the Jews at the hands of the Nazi
Government has been proved in the greatest detail before the
Tribunal. It is a record of consistent and systematic
inhumanity on the greatest scale. Ohlendorf, Chief of Amt
III in the RSHA from 1939 to 1943, and who was in command of
one of the Einsatz groups in the campaign against the Soviet
Union testified as to the methods employed in the
extermination of the Jews. He said that he employed firing
squads to shoot the victims in order to lessen the sense of
individual guilt on the part of his men; and the 90,000 men,
women, and children who were murdered in one year by his
particular group were mostly Jews.

When the witness Bach Zelewski was asked how Ohlendorf could
admit the murder of 90,000 people, he replied:

     "I am of the opinion that when, for years, for
     decades, the doctrine is preached that the Slav
     race is an inferior race, and Jews not even human,
     then such an outcome is inevitable."

But the Defendant Frank spoke the final words of this
chapter of Nazi history when he testified in this Court:

     "We have fought against Jewry: we have fought
     against it for years: and we have allowed
     ourselves to make utterances and my own diary has
     become a witness against me in this connection
     utterances which are terrible .. A thousand years
     will pass and this guilt of Germany will still not
     be erased."

The anti-Jewish policy was formulated in Point 4 of the
Party Program which declared "Only a member of the race can
be a citizen. A member of the race can only be one who is of
German blood, without consideration

                                                   [Page 61]

of creed. Consequently, no Jew can be a member of the race."
Other points of the program declared that Jews should be
treated as foreigners, that they should not be permitted to
hold public office, that they should be expelled from the
Reich if it were impossible to nourish the entire population
of the State, that they should be denied any further
immigration into Germany, and that they should be prohibited
from publishing German newspapers. The Nazi Party preached
these doctrines throughout its history. Der Stuermer and
other publications were allowed to disseminate hatred of the
Jews, and in the speeches and public declarations of the
Nazi leaders, the Jews were held up to public ridicule and

With the seizure of power, the persecution of the Jews was
intensified. A series of discriminatory laws was passed,
which limited the offices and professions permitted to Jews;
and restrictions were placed on their family life and their
rights of citizenship. By the autumn of 1938, the Nazi
policy towards the Jews had reached the stage where it was
directed towards the complete exclusion of Jews from German
life. Pogroms were organized, which included the burning and
demolishing of synagogues, the looting of Jewish businesses,
and the arrest of prominent Jewish business men. A
collective fine of RM1 billion was imposed on the Jews, the
seizure of Jewish assets was authorized, and the movement of
Jews was restricted by regulations to certain specified
districts and hours. The creation of ghettos was carried out
on an extensive scale, and by an order of the Security
Police Jews were compelled to wear a yellow star to be worn
on the breast and back.

It was contended for the Prosecution that certain aspects of
this anti-Semitic policy were connected with the plans for
aggressive war. The violent measures taken against the Jews
in November, 1938, were nominally in retaliation for the
killing of an official of the German Embassy in Paris. But
the decision to seize Austria and Czechoslovakia had been
made a year before. The imposition of a fine of one billion
marks was made, and the confiscation of the financial
holdings of the Jews was decreed, at a time when German
armament expenditure had put the German treasury in
difficulties, and when the reduction of expenditure on
armaments was being considered. These steps were taken,
moreover, with the approval of the Defendant Goering, who
had been given responsibility for economic matters of this
kind, and who was the strongest advocate of an extensive
rearmament program notwithstanding the financial

It was further said that the connection of the anti-Semitic
policy with aggressive war was not limited to economic
matters. The German Foreign Office circular, in an article
of 25th January 1939, entitled "Jewish Question as a Factor
in German Foreign Policy in the Year 1938", described the
new phase in the Nazi anti-Semitic policy in these words:

     "It is certainly no coincidence that the fateful
     year 1938 has brought nearer the solution of the
     Jewish question simultaneously with the
     realization of the idea of Greater Germany, since
     the Jewish policy was both the basis and
     consequence of the year 1938. The advance made by
     Jewish influence and the destructive Jewish spirit
     in politics, economy, and culture, paralyzed the
     power and the will of the German People to rise
     again, more perhaps even than the power policy
     opposition of the former enemy Allied Powers of
     the first World War. The healing of this sickness
     among the people was therefore certainly one of
     the most important requirements for exerting the
     force which, in the year 1938 resulted in the
     joining together of Greater Germany in defiance of
     the world."

                                                   [Page 62]

The Nazi persecution of Jews in Germany before the war,
severe and repressive as it was, cannot compare, however,
with the policy pursued during the war in the occupied
territories. Originally the policy was similar to that which
had been in force inside Germany. Jews were required to
register, were forced to live in ghettos, to wear the yellow
star, and were used as slave laborers. In the summer of
1941, however, plans were made for the "final solution" of
the Jewish question in Europe. This "final solution" meant
the extermination of the Jews, which early in 1939 Hitler
had threatened would be one of the consequences of an
outbreak of war, and a special section in the Gestapo under
Adolf Eichmann, as head of Section B 4 of the Gestapo, was
formed to carry out the policy.

The plan for exterminating the Jews was developed shortly
after the attack on the Soviet Union. Einsatzgruppen of the
Security Police and SD, formed for the purpose of breaking
the resistance of the population of the areas lying behind
the German armies in the East, were given the duty of
exterminating the Jews in those areas. The effectiveness of
the work of the Einsatzgruppen is shown by the fact that in
February, 1942, Heydrich was able to report that Estonia had
already been cleared of Jews and that in Riga the number of
Jews had been reduced from 29,500 to 2,500. Altogether the
Einsatzgruppen operating in the occupied Baltic States
killed over 135,000 Jews in three months.

Nor did these special units operate completely independently
of the German Armed Forces. There is clear evidence that
leaders of the Einsatzgruppen obtained the co-operation of
Army commanders. In one case the relations between an
Einsatzgruppe and the military authorities was described at
the time as being "very close, almost cordial", in another
case the smoothness of an Einsatz-commando's operation was
attributed to the "understanding for this procedure" shown
by the Army authorities.

Units of the Security Police and SD in the occupied
territories of the East, which were under civil
administration, were given a similar task. The planned and
systematic character of the Jewish persecutions is best
illustrated by the original report of the SS Brigadier-
General Stroop, who was in charge of the destruction of the
ghetto in Warsaw, which took place in 1943. The Tribunal
received in evidence that report, illustrated with
photographs. bearing on its title page: "The Jewish Ghetto
in Warsaw No Longer Exists." The volume records a series of
reports sent by Stroop to the Higher SS and Police Fuehrer
East. In 4-5/1943, in one report, Stroop wrote:

     "The resistance put up by the Jews and bandits
     could only be suppressed by energetic actions of
     our troops day and night. The Reichsfuehrer SS
     ordered therefore on 23rd April, 1943 the cleaning
     out of the ghetto with utter ruthlessness and
     merciless tenacity. I therefore decided to destroy
     and burn down the entire ghetto, without regard to
     the armament factories. These factories were
     systematically dismantled and then burnt. Jews
     usually left their hideouts, but frequently
     remained in the burning buildings, and jumped out
     of the windows only when the heat became
     unbearable. They then tried to crawl with broken
     bones across street into buildings which were not
     afire .. Life in the sewers was not pleasant after
     the first week. Many times we could hear loud
     voices in the sewers.. Tear gas bombs were thrown
     into the manholes, and the Jews driven out of the
     sewers and captured. Countless numbers of Jews
     were liquidated in sewers and bunkers through
     blasting. The longer the resistance continued, the
     tougher became the members of the Waffen SS,
     Police and Wehrmacht, who always discharged their
     duties in an exemplary manner.
                                                   [Page 63]
Stroop recorded that his action at Warsaw eliminated "a
proved total of 56,065 people. To that we have to add the
number of those killed through blasting, fire, etc., which
cannot be counted." Grim evidence of mass murders of Jews
was also presented to the Tribunal in cinematograph films
depicting the communal graves of hundreds of victims which
were subsequently discovered by the Allies.

These atrocities were all part and parcel of the policy
inaugurated in 1941, and it is not surprising that there
should be evidence that one or two German officials entered
vain protests against the brutal manner in which the
killings were carried out. But the methods employed never
conformed to a single pattern. The massacres of Rowno and
Dubno, of which the German engineer Graebe spoke, were
examples of one method; the systematic extermination of Jews
in concentration camps, was another. Part of the "final
solution" was the gathering of Jews from all German-occupied
Europe in concentration camps. Their physical condition was
the test of life or death. All who were fit to work were
used as slave laborers in the concentration camps; all who
were not fit to work were destroyed in gas chambers and
their bodies burnt. Certain concentration camps such as
Treblinka and Auschwitz were set aside for this main
purpose. With regard to Auschwitz, the Tribunal heard the
evidence of Hoess, the commandant of the camp from 1st May
1940  to 1st December 1943. He estimated that in the camp of
Auschwitz alone in that time 2.5 million persons were
exterminated, and that a further 500,000 died from disease
and starvation. Hoess described the screening for
extermination by stating in evidence:

     "We had two SS doctors on duty at Auschwitz to
     examine the incoming transports of prisoners. The
     prisoners would be marched by one of the doctors
     who would make spot decisions as they walked by.
     Those who were fit for work were sent into the
     camp. Others were sent immediately to the
     extermination plants. Children of tender years
     were invariably exterminated since by reason of
     their youth they were unable to work. Still
     another improvement we made over Treblinka was
     that at Treblinka the victims almost always knew
     that they were to be exterminated and at Auschwitz
     we endeavored to fool the victims into thinking
     that they were to go through a delousing process.
     Of course, frequently they realized our true
     intentions and we sometimes had riots and
     difficulties due to that fact. Very frequently
     women would hide their children under their
     clothes, but of course when we found them we would
     send the children in to be exterminated."
He described the actual killing by stating:

     "It took from three to fifteen minutes to kill the
     people in the death chamber, depending upon
     climatic conditions. We knew when the people were
     dead because their screaming stopped. We usually
     waited about one half-hour before we opened the
     doors and removed the bodies. After the bodies
     were removed our special commandos took off the
     rings and extracted the gold from the teeth of the

Beating, starvation, torture, and killing were general. The
inmates were subjected to cruel experiments at Dachau in
August,. 1942, victims were immersed in cold water until
their body temperature was reduced to 28 degrees Centigrade,
when they died immediately. Other experiments included high
altitude experiments in pressure chambers, experiments to
determine how long human beings could survive in freezing
water, experiments with poison bullets, experiments with
contagious diseases, and experiments dealing with
sterilization of men and women by X-rays and other methods.

                                                   [Page 64]

Evidence was given of the treatment of the inmates before
and after their extermination. There was testimony that the
hair of women victims was cut off before they were killed,
and shipped to Germany, there to be used in the manufacture
of mattresses. The clothes, money, and valuables of the
inmates were also salvaged and sent to the appropriate
agencies for disposition. After the extermination the gold
teeth and fillings were taken from the heads of the corpses
and sent to the Reichsbank.

After cremation the ashes were used for fertilizer, and in
some instances attempts were made to utilize the fat from
the bodies of the victims in the commercial manufacture of
soap. Special groups traveled through Europe to find Jews
and subject them to the "final solution". German missions
were sent to such satellite countries as Hungary and
Bulgaria, to arrange for the shipment of Jews to
extermination camps and it is known that by the end of 1944,
400,000 Jews from Hungary had been murdered at Auschwitz.
Evidence has also been given of the evacuation of 110,000
Jews from part of Rumania for "liquidation". Adolf Eichmann,
who had been put in charge of this program by Hitler, has
estimated that the policy pursued resulted in the killing of
6 million Jews, of which 4 million were killed in the
extermination institutions.

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