The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Sessions/Session-016-05

Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Sessions/Session-016-05
Last-Modified: 1999/05/30

Attorney General: My following request is to submit the
declaration of Walter Huppenkothen, who was
Regierungsdirektor (Head of Department) in the RSHA,
Stabndartenfuehrer in the SS.

Presiding Judge: Before whom was the declaration made?

Attorney General: It was made in Nuremberg. This is a
declaration under oath.

Presiding Judge: Before an interrogator?

Attorney General: Before an interrogator. He was in
Department IVE which dealt with counterespionage and matters
of Economic Frontier Control. The affidavit relates on the
status of the Accused in Bureau IV and it speaks of his
special status as the "Referent" ("Rapporteur," Head of
Department) for Jewish Affairs. The Accused himself was also
interrogated on this point, in extracts which have already
been read. He said that he was responsible directly to
Mueller. In other words, he in fact passed over the Head of
Sub-Department B, for Mueller was the Head of Department IV.
There was a man by the name of Hartl who was nominally in
charge of Sub-Department B, and Eichmann was Head of
SectionIV B 4.

We would like to be assisted by the affidavit of
Huppenkothen so that we may show that Eichmann was directly
responsible to Mueeller...

Presiding Judge: Was this not mentioned in Eichmann's

Attorney General: We must support the Accused's statement
with other evidence, according to our judicial precedent,
and I would like to do so, if I can.

He was interrogated on the question of Huppenkothen at two
places in his statement. Firstly, he confirmed that he had,
in fact, occupied a position that enabled him to be
acquainted with the Accused's standing. The Court will find
this on page 1056 of the statement. Later on he was again
questioned on the same subject on page 1383 of the
statement. And here that same passage from the declaration
of Huppenkothen was read to him on which I wish to rely. I
ask you to allow me to submit the declaration.

Presiding Judge: Is Huppenkothen still alive?

Attorney General: As far as I know, he is.

Presiding Judge: Do you know where he is?

Attorney General: I shall not try to guess any more, since
Defence Counsel knows better where these people are to be
found. I thought that Hoettl was in Germany and now it
appears that he is in Austria. I shall not guess there
whereabouts any more.

Judge Raveh:   What was the Accused's reaction to this

Attorney General: He confirmed it. On page 1056 there
appears the following exchange of questions and answers:

Less  What did Huppenkothen's Department deal with?

Eichmann  Captain, this too I know not any more, what
Huppenkothen had...this, too, I know no longer now. But this
is quite obvious from the organization chart.

L. Yes, but he, evidently, knew also the workings of your

E. Yes, that was obvious, for at least once every 14 days we
had, thus it was once said...

And on page 1385:

Less  Do you want to say something on this, and would you
like to read it once again?

     Eichmann  This too, this is a mixture of 'truth and
     fiction.' To some extent there is more truth, of
     course, than fiction."

And so on, and so on. Then he makes a comment on
Huppenkothen's declaration.

Dr. Servatius:  The Accused has just told me that
Huppenkothen is alive and in the Federal German Republic.
Here I want to voice the same objection regarding the
affidavit of a witness, to the extent that it is possible to
trace the witness. I shall still attempt to obtain his

Presiding Judge: On this matter, also, we shall hand down
our decision tomorrow morning at 9.

Attorney General: Thank you.

The last documents I wish to submit, apart from those which
depend on the Court's decision tomorrow morning, are the
declaration and the interrogation of Eberhard von Thadden,
of the German Foreign Office.

Presiding Judge: Was this also before the Nuremberg

Attorney General: Yes. The affidavit was a defence document
in the defence of Hoffmann in Case No. 8, and the
interrogation - a defence document in the defence of Hermann
Pohl in Case No. 4, the trial of Pohl and others. Our
numbers are 984 and 453. No. 984, the affidavit, is referred
to in the Accused's statement on pages 3183, 3189. The
entire document was submitted to the Accused, he was asked
to react to it, and he responded.

Presiding Judge: What is the content of the document?

Attorney General: The document speaks of the Accused's
connections with the Foreign Office. Von Thadden was head of
that Department which dealt with Jewish Affairs in the
Foreign Office, and there was close contact between the
Gestapo and the German Foreign Office in regard to foreign
subjects, anti-Semitic propaganda and dealing with Jews who
had foreign citizenships in the diverse countries. Many
documents are going to be put before you in connection with
the Accused's activity in regard to foreign citizens in the
Warsaw Ghetto, in Auschwitz, Holland, France and in Hungary
and consequently it is important that you should know how
these relationships appeared according to the account of von
Thadden, again with all the reservations that will arise
concerning the weight of this material, its weight and its
ultimate value. I am not aware what Mr. von Thadden is doing
today, I am not aware whether he is alive or not. I request
you to admit these two documents in evidence.

Judge Halevi:  Was he a war criminal?

Attorney General: I cannot say at the moment, I do not know.

Dr. Servatius:  May I observe something here in connection
with this? Mr. von Thadden lives in the vicinity of
Duesseldorf. He had to undergo a great number of
investigation proceedings and these were stopped. I can
inform you of the address of the witness and he can be
brought (gestellt) before the Court.

Presiding Judge: What do you mean by this word "gestellt"?

Dr. Servatius:  I did not express myself accurately. The
intention was: The Prosecution will be able to bring him, it
will be able to call him as a witness.

Presiding Judge: To summon him as a witness.

Dr. Servatius:  This witness would be of great importance
for the reason that he was in charge of the Department in
the Foreign Ministry which corresponded to the Department of
which the Accused was in charge in the Head Office of Reich
Security. The two conducted direct negotiations and he is
aware of everything. Towards the end of the War a meeting
took place of all the officials in the Foreign Ministry who
dealt with Jewish affairs in Krumhuebel, and there the
witness gave a talk on the executions. For this reason he is
of importance and he should have been summoned.

Judge Halevi:  In Krumhuebel, during the Nazi regime after
the War?

Dr. Servatius:  I believe that this was in the year 1944 -
it was then that this discussion took place in Krumhuebel of
all the officials of the Foreign Ministry that dealt with
Jewish affairs abroad.

Attorney General: With the Court's permission, I gave a
reserved reply to the question of His Honour Judge Dr.
Halevi about our attitude to Mr. von Thadden and how we
viewed him. In the light of what Defence Counsel has said
then, if this indeed is a fact that von Thadden is an
offender under Section 1(b)(7) in that he participated in
the stirring up of hatred of the people of Israel, of hatred
of the Jews, and he is a criminal against the Jewish people,
if this is the case, I intend - if I am able - to put him on
trial, whatever the results of investigations elsewhere may
have been, if he should step on the soil of Israel. This is
the section that emerges from the words of Dr. Servatius
himself. And a person who is guilty of a crime against the
Jewish people, and where  the investigations will prove
this, will stand trial in the State of Israel, if he enters
the territory of the State.

Dr. Servatius:  Perhaps I may be permitted to refer here to
the agreement of judicial aid with the German Federal
Republic under which a witness must be brought and given
guarantee of free passage and immunity until eight days
after his examination.

Presiding Judge: We have already asked Mr. Hausner to
produce to us all the material on the arrangements for
judicial aid, and I hope that this material will be in our
hands in the afternoon so that we may peruse it and see
whether there is some substance in it, as you maintain.

Attorney General: This will be so, Your Honour. I simply
wish to say one thing. The Prosecution, at any rate, will
not request the summoning of von Thadden to the State of
Israel, even if there is such a provision as Defence Counsel

Presiding Judge: But first of all, let us see the section
and thereafter you can say what you have to say.

Attorney General: But there are his declarations. And we
wish to submit them, and the Court will decide if we shall
be able to do so.

Presiding Judge: This was an affidavit, and there is also an

Attorney General: Yes.

Presiding Judge: What has been said here applies to both

Attorney General: One of them was submitted to the Accused
in its entirety - the second not.

Presiding Judge: Perhaps you would describe the second

Attorney General: The second document is an interrogation
which was made in regard to Trial No. 4 on 13 March 1946,
before a Commission appointed by the Court to question the
witness. The subject of the interrogation was "The treatment
of Jewish questions in the Foreign Ministries on the basis
of the intervention of foreign diplomats; reports that von
Thadden received from Eichmann and from other authorities;
visits which he conducted alone and in company with
representatives of the Protecting Powers and the Red Cross
in various places, including concentration camps; methods
employed by Eichmann and other authorities for the
maintenance of secrecy and camouflage." So it says at the
beginning of the investigation. He was questioned by Herman
Pohl's defence counsel. The Commission consisted of Captain
Joseph Tubrich and Mr. George R. Taylor.

Presiding Judge: I presume, Dr. Servatius, that you have the
same objections regarding this second document on von
Thadden, as you had in respect of the first.

Dr. Servatius:  Actually this was a discussion before a
special Commission whose function it was to assist the
International Military Tribunal. That same Commission dealt
with the subject of the organizations. Here Defence Counsel
argued in favour of people from the Foreign Ministry, I
believe I remember that this contention was that these were
the acts of the Government of the Reich itself, and not of
the men of the Foreign Ministry.

Presiding Judge: Do you recall who Herman Pohl was?

Judge Halevi:  [commenting on the translation of the remarks
of Dr. Servatius] I believe that the intention was that the
dispute was whether the Government of the Reich, including
the Foreign Ministry as well, should be proclaimed as a
criminal organization or not. The line of the Defence
Counsel for the Government of the Reich was that the Foreign
Ministry was innocent, and that all the guilt fell upon
Eichmann and his colleagues. This was the gist of Dr.
Servatius' argument.

Attorney General: Dr. Servatius is mistaken as to the facts.
Whereas judgment in the Nuremberg Trial was given on 1
November 1946, this investigation was conducted on 7 July
1947, and on an entirely different matter.

Presiding Judge: Was the Foreign Ministry charged with being
a hostile organization at Nuremberg?

Attorney General: No. Only the "leadership corps" of the
Party were proclaimed a hostile organization.

Judge Raveh:   Are you talking of an examination within the
framework of the trial of Pohl and his associates?

Attorney General: That was in another case, at a later
period, after the judgment which decided which of them were
criminal organizations. Therefore I believe that Defence
Counsel's remarks are erroneous.

Dr. Servatius:  I am relying on the document itself. It
appears from a punctilious reading of the text that it is a
summary or a copy of an investigation before a Commission of
the International Military Tribunal, and this is an
interrogation by Defence Counsel. This is the way in which
it is to be interpreted.

Presiding Judge: It appears from the quotation that this was
an investigation that took place within the framework of the
trial against the principal war criminals and thereafter
Defence Counsel wanted to use it in the additional Trial No.

Judge Halevi:  But this is only an argument against the
credibility of the witness.

Dr. Servatius:  There was no possibility of hearing von
Thadden under cross-examination. Had it been known at the
time that his evidence would be used in another case, the
Accused would have been able to defend himself through a
representative, and he would have had an opportunity of
examining the witness.

Presiding Judge: In the matter of the two documents of von
Thadden too, we shall give our decision tomorrow morning.

Attorney General: These are the documents, apart from the
passage from the "Final Solution" on which there is not yet
a decision and for which Defence Counsel has been given an
extension in order to check the handwriting of Hoess.

Presiding Judge: We shall finish that this afternoon.

Attorney General: That concludes my documents. I would ask
the Court to allow us to continue with the hearing of
evidence on the subject of Germany.

Judge Halevi:  If you have now concluded the subject of the
documents,I have a question concerning these documents. With
regard to documents, you submitted the Accused's comments in
response to the articles which appeared in the magazine
Life. At that time the Court had not yet had an opportunity
to examine the Accused's replies. Meanwhile I have cursorily
perused the Accused's replies concerning the publication in
Life and I gained the impression that the gist of his
complaint was that Life published only a summary of his
remarks, and that these words were taken out of their
context. Consequently, their full significance, in the
original, may have been different, and hence it was
difficult for him to answer, and he could have had
reservations about many matters as long as he was not
required to reply to the original. It seems to me that he
did not maintain that the original did not reflect his
statement; he merely said that the summary in Life did not
reflect his statement. He did not state that he had not said
some such words at all, but that what he had said was much
more detailed.

Attorney General: He also said, if I remember correctly,
that the combination of passages, as they appear in Life,
seeing that they had been taken out of context of other
passages, appearing as they do in a new context, do not
properly reflect what he said.

Judge Halevi:  Did the Prosecution obtain the original and
manage to submit it to the Accused?

Attorney General: No - we do not possess this original.
There are various accounts concerning it. According to our
information, it was recorded and given to a journalist in
the Argentine, a Dutch Nazi - this is what we have been told
- and that in some way of other the manuscript subsequently
came into the possession of a representative of Life. But we
do not have the full manuscript. All that we know is what is
published in Life. And since this is what we knew, we
interrogated the Accused in accordance therewith.

Judge Halevi:  Is it not possible to procure the full text
from Life? I understand that the Accused's complaint was
that the editor of Life edited and shortened the Accused's
manuscript - the original. That is to say, there ought to be
in the possession of Life the original which served as the
basis for the edited publication.

Attorney General: It never became clear to us whether the
Accused maintained that it was Life that edited his
statement in this manner, or that some person to whom the
Accused, in his own words, entrusted the tapes, was the one
who edited, shortened and altered the context of the
remarks. At all events, if the Court deems fit, we shall
approach Life. We did not think that this was necessary
during the course of the interrogation. An article was
published, we regarded it as our duty to place it before the
Accused and to ask him for a comment - especially as the
publication was so widespread - worldwide.

Judge Halevi:  The significance of the publication seems to
lie in the fact that it purports to be the words of the
Accused, but at that time he was not yet under arrest. In
other words, this was a spontaneous expression of his

Attorney General: Yes. But seeing that he does not maintain
before this Court that what he said to the interrogators of
Bureau 06 was against his will, under duress or pressure,
the document we have submitted to you as Exhibit 37 is no
less relevant to our argument than what was published in
Life. Our experience, generally, in approaching the press to
reveal the sources of its information is not encouraging nor
does it hold out much hope in respect of an approach such as

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, do you have any objection to
an approach by the Attorney General to the editors of Life
in this matter?

Dr. Servatius:  This is a very complicated question. I, too,
have made efforts to get to the original. These are what are
termed "memoirs" which somehow came into the possession of
that Dutch journalist who edited them in a way into the
details of which I shall not enter now. The items were
edited by him and handed over to Life with the right to
additional adjustments. This was done, and hence the memoirs
twice passed through other hands. I consider it to be
unimportant, because the Accused himself expressed himself
on these matters, before he was brought to trial.

Presiding Judge: Anyway, you would have no objection to Mr.
Hausner's writing a letter to the editors of Life?

Dr. Servatius:  I have no objection to an attempt to secure
the original, but there arises here the question of
copyright, which has barred the way, at any rate, for me.
For the publishers know that I could demand certain rights

Presiding Judge: Very well. I understand that the Attorney
General will approach the editors of Life in this matter.

Attorney General: I shall do so. I mentioned that the
documents, the submission of which is dependent upon the
decision of the Court, were the last of the personal file as
we see it. I regret that this is not the end of the
documents generally.

Presiding Judge: I had no illusions about that, Mr. Hausner.
Who is the next witness?

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