The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 2000/12/03

THE PRESIDENT: Before you deal with that, perhaps you ought
to read the last paragraph but one on Page 27, beginning at
the second sentence in that paragraph, Page 27, the
penultimate paragraph.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: My Lord, is that the one beginning,
"Therefore - "?

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, the second sentence, "As the police
forces - "

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE:

  "As the police forces available were far from sufficient,
  the SA Sturm for special use, which was stationed in
  Nuremberg in the old Samariter Wache at the Hallplatz No.
  4, was appointed to assist the police in these tasks. In
  this guardhouse the necessary confrontations and
  questionings of arrested Communists took place. The
  leader of this Sturm SA unit was the then
  Sturmbannfuehrer (SA Major) Eugen Korn, 25 years old,
  unmarried, commercial employee in Nuremberg. His deputy -
  " and so on.

I am much obliged, your Lordship.

My Lord, I call your Lordship's attention to Page 29, page
29 of the German text:

  "Lastly it may also be pointed out that this deed was
  committed relatively shortly after the coming into force
  of the amnesty decree of 2nd August, 1933. If it had been
  committed before 26th July, 1933, that is, only three
  weeks earlier, it would have been amnestied like a number
  of other political excesses. As the deed did not
  originate in an ignoble motive, but rather served the
  achievement of an exceedingly patriotic aim and the
  advance of the National Socialist State, the quashing of
  the proceedings, also in view of the above-mentioned
  relation of the time of the deed to the above-mentioned
  amnesty, does not seem incompatible with the orderly
  administration of criminal justice.
  
  For all these reasons it is suggested, in connection with
  the position of the Police Directorate, that the
  proceedings on account of the bodily injuries resulting
  in the death of the mechanic Oskar Pflaumer, as well as
  on account of the actions of criminal participation and
  acts of favouring immediately connected with this, should
  be quashed."

And, my Lord, in due course that is forwarded by the
defendant Frank, in the next document on Page 3o, and on the
top of Page 31, as Reich Governor von Epp says:

                                                  [Page 198]

  "I hereby quash the criminal proceedings."

That is sent by Frank to the Court of Appeal Public
Prosecutor.

It is interesting, my Lord, and I would have referred your
Lordship to it, in view of what we have heard about isolated
acts unconnected with the SA leadership, that this man Korn
was the Sturmbannfuehrer Korn who was on the staff of the
supreme SA leadership.

Now, my Lord, I did not intend to take the other ones as I
hoped to be able to make it even shorter, but there are two
others which show this same perversion of justice, and
therefore, I submit, are important.

My Lord, the next is D-936, which your Lordships will find
on Pages 51 and 52. That will be GB 616. My Lord, that is
connected with the nine members of the SA who were charged
with beating up the editor of the newspaper The Lower
Bavarian Peasant. My Lord, that was a Dr. Schloegl and The
Lower Bavarian Peasant I think was a Bavarian People's Party
paper, a sort of Catholic Party paper. And your Lordship
will see that the proceedings are held to fall within the
amnesty but, my Lord, it is interesting again to see the
declared motive and the connection with the leadership. If
your Lordship would look at the second paragraph for the
reason for the decision of the Amtsgerichtsrat, it says:

  "There is no doubt, therefore, that the deeds were
  committed for political reasons. They were committed also
  to ensure the success of the National Socialist State. It
  may be that the destruction of the furniture was intended
  to serve the purpose of a house-search, in which
  previously imbibed alcohol may have played a harmful part
  in the manner of carrying out that decision.
  
  It may be that, by the destruction of the furniture,
  certainly, however, by the ill-treatment, it was intended
  to restrain Dr. Schloegl from further political activity.
  No other motive for the deeds can be found."

I ask your Lordship to note:

"The supreme SA leadership have also examined these
questions. In their letter of 14th September, 1933, they
announce that the SA men in question were bound to see and
did see, in the possibility of Dr. Schloegl forcing his way
into the National Socialist movement, a danger for the
movement and thus for the nation itself. Nor were the deeds
committed for the purpose of personal profit or other low
motives. The supreme SA leadership state on this point that
the deed and intention of the SA men were only aimed at the
well-being of the National Socialist movement. The political
reason and the purity of the intention is thus beyond
doubt."

Now, my Lord, I ask your Lordship again to note that it is
the supreme SA leadership.

My Lord, the only other one - I hope I can take it quite
quickly - your Lordship will find in document book 10-A, the
smaller Document Book, Page 9.

Your Lordship may remember that my learned friend, Major
Barrington, mentioned the question of the punishment of
these members of the SA - I think, my Lord, they run to some
30 or so - that had been engaged in cruelties in the
concentration camp of Hohenstein. My Lord, this is the
report dealing with their punishment, and your Lordship will
note - and this is, in my submission, interesting - that it
is dated 5th June, 1935. My Lord, it concerns the penal
proceedings against the merchant and SA Leader
Obersturmbannfuehrer Jaehnichen and 22 companions - I am
afraid I said 30; it is 23 - for inflicting bodily injury on
duty in the protective custody camp of Hohenstein in Saxony.

This is a letter from Dr. Guertner to the defendant Hess.
That is, it is a top-level letter from the Ministry of
Justice to the deputy of the Fuehrer. My Lord, it is 784-PS.
It becomes GB 617.

Dr. Guertner first of all sets out the sentences that were
asked for by the Prosecutor. Then he sets out the sentences
which were inflicted by the Supreme Court in Dresden.

                                                  [Page 199]

My Lord, I ought to have said that this is Page 9 of the
English document; I think Page 9 to 15 of the German, too.

My Lord, turning over to Page 10, which is Pages 10 and 11
of the German document, your Lordship will see that the
Minister of Justice writes:

  "After the proposal of the sentence, however, still
  before the announcement of the verdict, the chairman of
  the Criminal Division No. 12" - that is, the judge -
  "received the following letter from the Reich Governor
  (Reichsstatthalter) of Saxony."

DR. BOEHM: I beg your pardon, Mr. President, but the
document which I received has neither a Page 9 nor a Page
10. It only has a Page 7 at the most. I am, therefore, not
in a position to follow the Prosecutor's speech.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: My Lord, I see the paging is
different on Dr. Boehm's copy. This is the letter from the
Reich Governor:

  "As I was informed, it is proposed to impose a punishment
  of 32 years of penal servitude upon the accused
  Standartenfuehrer Jaehnichen. Without wanting to
  interfere in the proceedings or intending to influence
  you as judge in any way before the verdict is announced,
  I should nevertheless like to once more call your
  attention to the fact that the circumstances, as they had
  been brought about by the revolution of 1933, and as
  they, without doubt, were still taking effect up to the
  beginning of 1934, cannot be overlooked when pronouncing
  sentence.
  
  A further point appears to me to be worth taking into
  consideration, namely the fact that one cannot accuse
  Jaehnichen of having a low character and that, above all,
  in Hohenstein the scum of humanity had to be dealt with.
  In consideration of this fact I should like to leave it
  to you to consider whether the lapses call for such a
  severe degree of punishment" - your Lordship will note
  the next words - "or whether a pardon could not be
  considered.
  
  As Gauleiter of the NSDAP I consider it as my duty to
  call attention again to the unusual circumstances."

Now, my Lord, Dr. Guertner, the Minister of Justice, goes
on, and this your Lordship may well think is the most
extraordinary and sinister part of it:

  "Moreover, the information has come to hand that the two
  magistrates who functioned as judges in the principal
  trial, namely Regierungsamtmann Helbig and the merchant
  Pesler, had been expelled from the NSDAP after the
  announcement of the verdict. I do not know by whom this
  expulsion was ordered.
  
  Finally it has been put to the Assistant Prosecutor,
  Staatsanwalt (Attorney) Dr. Walther, who is a storm
  trooper, after the pronouncing of the verdict on his
  Obersturmbannfuehrer, that he should resign from the SA."

And then you may think that the Minister of Justice goes on
with some extremely pertinent observations as to the
impossibility of carrying on justice if this goes on. He
says in the middle of that paragraph, the end of Page 12 in
the German version:

  "That kind of procedure against lay judges after the
  verdict had been pronounced would naturally and
  necessarily arouse the feeling that when they are
  functioning as judges they are responsible to a certain
  office for their work. Hereby the judicial impartiality
  which is the foundation of every orderly administration
  of criminal law becomes null and void."

Then he deals with the lay judge, and as your Lordship will
see, at the end of the paragraph he comes to the
understandable conclusion:

  "I would find myself obliged to consider the question
  whether in the face of such a state of affairs public
  prosecutors and judges could still be functionaries of
  the Party or members of the SA at all."

Now, my Lord, your Lordship will see at the bottom of Page I
1 of the English book, Page 3 of the document, and Page 13
of the German version, that there is a letter to the Chief
of Staff of the SA of the NSDAP, with a copy of the
following

                                                  [Page 200]

accusation enclosed. My Lord, that would be Lutze at that
time because Roehm had been murdered before that date. The
same points are put to the Chief of Staff of the NSDAP, and,
my Lord, the matter then goes up to Hitler. My Lord, your
Lordship will find the report that contains Hitler's
decision on Pages 13, 14 and 15 of the English version, and
Pages 16 - I think it starts - to 33 of the German version.
I hope Dr. Boehm will be able to find it.

My Lord, that is 785-PS. I am sorry, my Lord, I thought it
was the same document. It is a different document. Your
Lordship will see in the first paragraph a description of
the crime:

  "The maltreatment of inmates which has led to the
  sentencing of the accused was not carried out for any
  political purpose (to obtain a confession, to punish
  disciplinary infractions, etc.) or in respect to
  previously suffered wrongs inflicted by Communists, but
  was merely malicious torture or expressions of sadistic
  brutality."

Then:

  "A few cases of maltreatment occurred, however, where
  enemies of the State were involved."

At the end of that paragraph:

  " ... the defendants not only attempted to wring
  confessions from the inmates but that they had acted in
  sheer lust for torture."

"They acted in sheer lust for torture." This is a document
coming from the Reich Chancellery, so your Lordship sees the
criticism that was made in that quarter. But then, my Lord,
it goes on to say at the end of the next paragraph about
being influenced neither by political purposes nor by
personal revenge. Then that is shown.

But, my Lord, at the top of Page 14 it is stated:

  "If, nevertheless, I suggest subsequently a further
  reduction of sentence based upon new evidence of some of
  the defendants, I can only justify my action because I
  believe that according to circumstances the defendants in
  one or the other case of maltreatment may have acted
  partly out of revolutionary motives."

I will repeat that:

  " - may have acted partly out of revolutionary motives."

Then it gives some examples, and, my Lord, at the foot of
the page there is the appendix, with Hitler's decision:

  "Upon application of the Reich Minister of Justice" -
  which was the preceding - "I hereby grant in the case
  against Rudolf Jaehnichen and others for maltreatment of
  persons committed to protective custody in Hohenstein
  concentration camp, the following mitigation of sentences
  as enumerated in Column 6,"

and then, roughly, my Lord, the sentence is reduced by
either a third or a half in each case.

My Lord, I would just like to correct an exhibit number. The
first document is Exhibit USA 732, and the second document,
785-PS, will be GB 617. My Lord, I am again sorry; it is my
mistake. It is USA 733, the second document. I am so sorry.

THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps we had better break off now.

(A recess was taken.)

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: My Lord, I have finished with the
submission of documents. There are three more questions in
cross-examination which I should like to put to the witness;
and then I shall be finished with my cross-examination.

THE PRESIDENT: Just before you turn away from this 16-B, if
you turn to Page 27, the Tribunal would like to know from
the witness what the SA Sturm for Special Use was.

                                                  [Page 201]

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: Your Lordship, I mention that
because I told your Lordship that the fact that Korn was on
the staff of the supreme SA leadership was on 27, the last
line of 26; and you will see that the last line of 26 is:
"Korn is at present in Munich on the staff of the supreme SA
leadership." My Lord, then I will ask the question.

Q. Witness, will you tell the Tribunal what the SA Sturm for
Special Use was, which was stationed in Nuremberg in the old
Samariter Wache at Hallplatz No. 4; what task it carried out
in assisting the police?

A. We had SA Sturme and Sturmbanne for special use in
various places, and in Nuremberg, too, as far as I know. The
general task of these units was to make themselves available
in case of catastrophe. Further, for police purposes, when
they were requested by the police and used by them as
auxiliary police. They were also used for fire service, and
during the war in air raid service in Hamburg, for instance,
and Westphalia. Those were in general the tasks of the
Sturmbanne for special use. They were composed of men whose
work or professions allowed them time for such service.

Q. The present example is that these men under Korn, who was
on the staff of the supreme SA leadership, beat this
Communist to death by using the bastinado on his feet. Was
that one of the special uses which this Sturm indulged in
when they were doing no work? Was that the sort of thing,
beating up Communists? Was that one of the special tasks?
Was that a typical special task of this Sturm, to beat up
Communists in August, 1933?

A. No. That was never their task and if Korn did that he
would have to receive fitting punishment.

Q. You must have known Korn, did you not? He was on the
staff of the supreme SA leadership.

A. I knew Korn from the year 1934, approximately.

Q. And you went on working with Korn for years, did you not?

A. He was employed in the personnel office for some time.
This offence which has just been reported I knew nothing of
until today.

Q. You knew nothing until today, when you were Deputy Chief
of Staff of the SA? Are you really telling the Tribunal you
knew nothing about the fact that one man from the staff of
the supreme leadership had been engaged in this foul and
brutal murder in Nuremberg, and you heard nothing about it?
Is that your story?

A. The Prosecutor seems to have overlooked the fact that I
was Deputy Chief of Staff only from 1939 on. Up to then I
was Section Chief in the Fuehrungsamt and then Chief of the
Fuehrungsamt.

Q. I am not forgetting your first words in evidence, when
you said that you could give an account of the SA from 1933
onwards dealing with all relevant parts - however, if that's
your answer I'll leave it. I'll now take up another of your
suggestions. Look at Document 1721-PS.


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