Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Appeal/Appeal-Session-01-02 Last-Modified: 1999/06/15 The United Nations Security Council, too, notwithstanding its disapproval of the Accused's behaviour, has manifested this apprehension. The Council has added to its resolution on the Accused's abduction a declaration that the Accused be brought before an "appropriate court," "appropriate justice," that is to say: not before an Israeli court, as planned. The trial of the Accused has been fair. From the strictly legal point of view, it has not been a show trial. But publications in the press, radio and television have prepared the public and followed the trial throughout the world. The Accused has wrongly been turned into the central figure of the persecution of the Jews. The authors and real controllers of the persecution were left in the background. It is to be apprehended that this persistent propaganda directed deliberately against the Accused might not have failed to exercise its influence even on the Judges. As to the likelihood of such an influence, I beg to refer to the decision of the Tel Aviv District Court, given in the middle of March 1962, in the case of a criminal appeal filed by two editors-in-chief. I have been informed of this decision through the press. According to this report, from a newspaper dated 14 March 1962, the decision emphasizes that a judge has to be endowed with considerable strength of character not to be influenced by publications. If this dictum applies in less important cases, the more it has to apply where the great political events have to be judged in which the Accused in the present case is involved. It is respectfully submitted that these aspects be taken into account. I likewise submit that the same be done also in respect of the Judges of this Honourable Court of Appeal. The other grounds of appeal submitted by the Defence refer in the first place to irregularities of procedure. It has already been argued that the application for hearing the witnesses Shimoni and Tohar were wrongly rejected as irrelevant. I reiterate, also in this context, the application for hearing these witnesses on the subject of the instructions given to them. Moreover, the appeal relies upon irregularities of procedure by which the defence of the Accused was prejudiced and which influenced the proceedings to the detriment of the Accused. These irregularities, too, stem from the lack of jurisdiction of the Court. Israel's legal system follows the principles of the Anglo- American system according to which the accused himself has to provide the evidence for the defence. Contrary to the rules of Continental law, the prosecution is not bound to provide evidence in favour of the accused as well. Under the prevailing circumstances, the Accused was unable to fulfil the requirement thereby demanded of him. The relevant witnesses and documents are not available in Israel. Moreover, they cannot be traced from Israel by the Accused, with the means at his disposal. Only the authorities in Germany would be able to perform this task. The Defence had no alternative but to agree to the examination of witnesses by the taking of evidence on commission by a judge abroad. However, further disadvantages resulted from the taking of evidence in this way. According to the Austrian law of procedure, the important witness, Hoettl, was examined by the judge alone, in the absence of the interested parties. In this respect, the judge himself declares, in an accompanying letter to the District Court, that he himself considers himself as "involved." That means that the judge was prejudiced. The witness Becher, whose evidence too was of importance, was served by the judge with the list of the questions to be put to him in cross-examination, a few days before his examination. Therefore, this witness was enabled to prepare himself for his examination, as he had previously on the occasion of a conversation in prison with Dr. Kasztner, and later on when he had likewise taken certain precautions on the occasion of a conversation with the witness Joel Brand. In general, it has to be emphasized that taking evidence by commission amounts only to an insufficient alternative measure. The court is deprived of the personal impression made by the witness, and the witness is not examined in the presence and with the participation of the accused who can ask appropriate questions. The Nazis and Nazi Collaborators (Punishment) Law, 5710- 1950, has foreseen these difficulties arising from the proceedings by providing for the inclusion of Section 16. This special provision enables... President You mean Article 15, Dr. Servatius. Dr. Servatius That must have been a mistake. This special provision in Section 15 enables a deviation from the ordinary rules of evidence in Court, if this deviation is conducive to the elucidation of the truth and the proper conduct of the trial. The application of this section contributed to the acceleration and the simplification of the trial. As to the elucidation of the truth, the application of this provision proved to be an insufficient surrogate. A further aspect needs to be explored. In the present case, contrary to the law prevailing on the European continent, the record of the Accused's examination by the Superintendent of Police, Less, as produced in Court, was admitted in evidence. Where statements made by the Accused during his interrogation by the police contradicted his answers in the witness box, the Court preferred his statements made to the police. However, in this respect, no attention was paid to the fact that, when he made his first statements to the police, the Accused had at first to find his way through the details of events which had occurred fifteen to twenty years earlier. The Accused was not a callous prisoner, but tried to co- operate. This transpires from the record of the interrogation by the police which comprises 3,500 pages, and in particular from his voluntary statement of his having watched executions by firing squads and gassings, to which noone else would have been able to testify. The Court has not found any explanation for the unveiling of this gruesome secret by the Accused. But here it is: It was the effort of the Accused himself to contribute to the elucidation of the truth. The police officer did not ask the Accused any inadmissible leading questions. But as documents were not shown to the Accused in chronological order, the Accused, in the beginning, had to rely, repeatedly, on suppositions and assumptions. Later on, after having perused the complete set of documents, he was able to complete and rectify his former statements. These completions and rectifications have been wrongly construed by the Court as an effort to shirk responsibility. Had this been the intention of the Accused, he would have eagerly expressed approval of the description given by the witness, Dr. Merten, according to which the Accused assisted him in saving 20,000 Jews from Salonika by enabling their departure. The Accused denied having been instrumental in such a matter. Moreover, also in respect of the so-called "Brand Operation," nothing would have appeared to be more favourable for the Accused, than if he had declared that he had acted out of compassion for the Jews. The Accused refrained from doing so. Important findings by the District Court are not supported by sufficient evidence. First of all, the District Court has not properly judged the Accused's status in relation to his superiors. The Court did not pay sufficient attention to the fact that the Accused was only one of the 160 Section Heads in the Head Office for Reich Security (RSHA). From the wealth of documents produced, not a single one is signed other than "i.A.," im Auftrag - by order. Moreover, the Accused's power to sign letters to the Department of Jewish Affairs in the Foreign Ministry, without their being countersigned by his superior, was nothing unusual. The Department Head in the Foreign Ministry, von Thadden, also signed letters to the RSHA without anyone countersigning them. This is shown by numerous documents. The District Court wrongly concludes that the Accused had the authority to decide in important matters without resorting to orders from his superior, in relying upon the rules of procedure prevailing during the Weimar Republic. At that time, a section head was more independent. However, democratic freedom of action no longer existed under the dictatorial regime, and in particular not in agencies of the SS, such as the RSHA, where dictatorial orders were issued relating to routine work. This was the typical procedure adopted by Hitler himself, to intervene even in matters of the least importance. Subordinates no longer had any independent power of implementation. The Accused's status, as compared with that of other Section Heads, was even far less favorable and more restricted. He did not have a Group Leader who could have supported him before his superiors, but he was directly responsible to a Lieutenant-General who was Head of his Department. Because of the difference in ranks, this was bound to create a distance which could not be bridged. Anyone with even the slightest knowledge of matters of rank and hierarchy would appreciate this. In view of these circumstances, the Accused had to be careful not to expose himself to the reproach of independent action. Therefore, he always took care to "cover himself," as it is being called. The Accused's closest collaborators confirmed, independently from each other, that this was one of his main characteristics. The witness Krumey stated that the Accused was careful not to take a decision on any action on his own responsibility. He never issued any instructions immediately, but always requested directives from his superiors in advance. The witness Novak testified that the Accused was constantly summoned to appear before his superior, Lieutenant-General Mueller. The witness Huppenkothen testified that the Accused was exceedingly cautious, even to the point of fear, and did not do anything without having obtained the orders of his superiors. The witness Professor Six, it is true, declared that he had the impression that the Accused, to a certain extent, held a position at the same level as his superior; but everything else in his testimony proves the opposite. The witness had no knowledge of the Accused having had any special powers, but admitted that the Accused was not called upon to attend the meetings of superior officers, which the witness himself always attended. Moreover, the witness testified that the Accused never acted beyond the scope of his authority. In view of the system prevailing in the RSHA, no one would have dared exceed the powers conferred upon him. Finally, the witness confirmed the Accused's characteristic habits of obedience and subordination. It is true that the former SS Standartenfuehrer Six now explains this as being due to the Accused's desire to please his superiors. This picture in no way fits the fantasies expressed by other interested persons in portraying the Accused's status. The witness Becher tried to create the impression that even the Reichsfuehrer-SS Himmler was afraid of the Accused. The witness Veesenmayer, Reich Plenipotentiary, and the SS Generals in Hungary, Winkelmann and Geschke, alleged that they were insignificant when compared with the Accused, who was subordinate to them, and that they had nothing whatsoever to do with his actions in the persecution of the Jews. Colonel Mildner, Commander of the Security Police in Denmark, who was in charge of the operation against the Jews there, in order to extricate himself, ascribes to the Accused extensive powers such as those vested in a minister only. The reasons for shifting the onus of responsibility onto the Accused are obvious. They are the very motives which caused the prisoners at Nuremberg to portray the Accused as bearing the main guilt for the extermination of the Jews. These motives induced the witness von dem Bach-Zelewski to state that for him the name Eichmann was a kind of legend. It remains incomprehensible that the psychologist Dr. Gilbert and Justice Musmanno, who came to Israel to testify, gave credence to this version of the prisoners. No wonder that the media and the press repeated this grand interpretation. The Accused's defence was rejected ironically as the "theory of the small cog," without the actual circumstances being examined. However, nobody was able to explain why this great man had held such a low rank. An attempt was made to find a solution to this enigma by making the Accused a kind of "grey eminence," whose actions would not attract attention by his holding a high rank. It is not correct to state, as was done in the Judgment, that the Accused could not have been promoted. It is true that, in his position as Section Head, the Accused had no possibility of further promotion. However, it would have been easy to create a special status for him, as at that time it was customary to create posts of special and general commissioners. Such an appointment involved promotion of rank and also an increase in salary. An example of such an appointment was the Reich Plenipotentiary Veesenmeyer who, according to the testimony of the witness Hoettl, was hastily promoted to the rank of SS General, prior to his departure for Budapest. However, the same witness, Hoettl, also confirms that the Accused and his family continued to live in most modest circumstances. The Accused did not profit from the miracles of promotion and the increases of salary in the Third Reich. This ought to be taken into consideration. The Accused remained a subordinate of low rank, who had begun to work in his office as a clerk without any previous professional training. The Accused did not have the skill of the witness Becher, who is said today to be paying taxes on property worth approximately one hundred million German Marks, notwithstanding his friendly relations with the Reichsfuehrer-SS. The Accused also lacked the smartness of the witness Veesenmeyer who, in the witness box, was unable to remember having been at any time Reich Plenipotentiary in Hungary. The Accused also did not have the skill of the witness Professor Six, who underwent training and was able to advance with the assistance of National Socialist grants, but who is said to have then joined the resistance movement at the right time. Nor did he suffer any inconvenience for having attended a conference of Heads of Departments for Jewish Affairs in the Foreign Ministry, held in Krummhuebel at the end of 1944. Today he holds a respectable position. When passing judgment on the Accused's activities, it should be remembered that they consisted of carrying out executive functions of the police. The police is entrusted with the carrying out of orders only, and is guided by the law and the instructions of the political leadership. The District Court stated in its Judgment that it is immaterial whether the Accused in person carried out killings, or passed on the orders which resulted in the killings as the consequence of rounding-up and deportation. Thus, everyone who participated in the process of drafting the laws must be considered as an accomplice in the commission of the offence. Depriving the Jews of their rights, the cancellation of their civic rights, the confiscation of their property - all these measures were the outcome of such legislation. At that time, these laws were the unassailable guidelines for the actions of the police. Dr. Hans Globke, who at that time held the post of a Ministerialrat (Section Head) in the Reich Ministry of the Interior ought to know, in his capacity as an expert, that the Nuremberg Laws and Reich Citizenship Law were binding upon the Accused and that he was unable to refuse to act according to these laws. It is respectfully requested to examine the former Ministerialrat Dr. Hans Globke as an expert witness in this matter.
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