Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Appeal/Appeal-Session-01-04 Last-Modified: 1999/06/15 In the first place, let us examine the participation of the Accused in the use of gas for the purpose of killing. In the opinion of the District Court, this matter originated in a letter from Wetzel, the Judicial Counsellor of the Ministry for Eastern Occupied Territories. The Prosecution submitted this document as exhibit T/308. This is a handwritten draft of a letter of this official responsible for Jewish affairs. According to this document, at a meeting with Wetzel, the Accused gave his consent to the establishment of gas installations at Riga. The Accused denied this. It is striking that the Accused's name is not mentioned in this handwritten draft, but a space was left blank. However, it is inconceivable that, when drawing up the document, Wetzel did not know the name of his interlocutor. This man, Wetzel, has now returned to Germany after long years of imprisonment abroad. Upon being questioned by telephone and not in the course of judicial proceedings, he declared that actually he did not converse with the Accused, but only with Brack, a senior officer in the Fuehrer's Chancellery and probably with a Hauptmann Rooss. The witness was not prepared to make a statement in writing to be submitted in Court, as an investigation against him is still pending. Justice Silberg Are you claiming that the blank space, where the name is omitted, refers to Captain Rooss? Dr. Servatius The document is hardly legible. At the bottom of the text, it states "corrected by Captain Rooss." Justice Silberg Was Rooss a Sturmbannfuehrer at the time? Dr. Servatius These police officers had various ranks. They had ranks used in the SS and also service ranks, and it is not clear in this text. The Accused says that in the text Sturmbannfuehrer is not written at all, but "from the Fuehrer's Chancellery." Justice Silberg No, the word Sturmbannfuehrer appears in one place. Dr. Servatius It reads:"with Oberdienstleiter Brack," then a dash, "officer in charge," then there is a blank space, and thereafter there is a sign that could be an "H," or possibly "St." Justice Silberg Could it be "SD"? Dr. Servatius Yes, perhaps. Justice Silberg It reads "SD," and then come two letters. That gives the impression that... Dr. Servatius This cannot be established with certainty. Mr. President, I shall apply for the examination of that witness. After all, he is best qualified to read his own handwriting. Attorney General I would like to know whether this is an application for the hearing of Wetzel as a witness. President I understand it to be so. Attorney General If that is the case, would Counsel for the Defence please tell us whether Wetzel knows that in the conversation between Brack and Wetzel, Eichmann's name was mentioned, for that name appears in the final draft. Dr. Servatius I do not quite understand the question - a conversation between whom? Attorney General Wetzel and Brack. Dr. Servatius Yes, he told me over the telephone that he had spoken to Brack. Justice Silberg But the question is whether he had spoken to Eichmann too. Dr. Servatius Well, he denied having done so. He told me that Brack had said something, such as that he would inform Eichmann; but apparently he did not want to commit himself as to details. Perhaps, may I add, he stated: "I made this draft in the presence of my superiors, and therefore it has been made somewhat hurriedly; it was a sort of dictation given to me." Justice Silberg And how do you explain Wetzel's letter - not this one - from the Ministry for Eastern Occupied Territories, in which he declares that Sturmbannfuehrer Eichmann has given his consent to this procedure? This is a letter dated 25 October 1941, also mentioned in the Green Series. Dr. Servatius I understand that to be the reference to the Accused's explanation of this document, T/37, page 2313. Justice Silberg I am referring to a letter dated 25 October 1941. This letter is quoted in paragraph 167 of the Judgment. In your application in respect of Wetzel's examination, you state that it was prepared in Nuremberg. Whom do you mean? Dr. Servatius May I explain this briefly. You see, upon reviewing the documents, you find that the handwritten transcription, the legible text, was made at Nuremberg by the American authorities. This is shown by the file number N.O. 996. In this case, an addition was made, by which the name Eichmann was inserted, but which does not appear in the handwritten text. The letter dated 25 October 1941... Justice Silberg But, Dr. Servatius, we have heard your arguments in respect of the typewritten copy, and we understand them. But we do not understand what you are saying in respect of the letter dated 25 October 1941 which was also submitted at Nuremberg during the Doctors' trial. In that letter, Eichmann's name was mentioned as having consented to that procedure. What have you got to say about that? Dr. Servatius The Accused points out that this cannot be correct. This document dated 25 October 1941 was written on an American typewriter and does not fit another draft typed on a typewriter in double space. I think, the witness Wetzel ought to be examined, and perhaps a handwriting expert ought to be heard, who might be able to decipher it. Justice Silberg Was Brack one of the accused in the Doctors trial? Dr. Servatius Yes. Justice Silberg Did Brack deny the contents of the letter? Was he shown the letter and was he questioned about it? Dr. Servatius Although I was involved in the Doctors' trial, I cannot remember this incident. President Dr. Servatius, one thing is not clear to me. I refer to the letter dated 25 October 1941, which I have before me. I understand that, when a document is copied, a certain word could inadvertently be copied incorrectly. But in the letter of 25 October 1941 there is an entire passage showing the Appellant's opinion and his statements. Does the Appellant claim that this letter was a forgery of the American prosecutors and they themselves concocted the whole story? Dr. Servatius There is reason for suspicion, because in the legible text the name Eichmann had been inserted. I must leave it to the Court to draw its conclusion in this matter. Possibly no major inaccuracies occurred at Nuremberg. However, I personally succeeded at the International Tribunal, after a protracted debate, in obtaining the rejection of an important document because, obviously, in my opinion it was fabricated. I think that these material questions ought to be put to the witness Wetzel, for he, after all, ought to remember. [Recess] President Please proceed, Dr. Servatius. Dr. Servatius Mr. President, may I revert again to the Wetzel document. Possibly the following was the course of events. More than one person was involved in the making of the document. At the end of the document the remark "to be submitted to the Minister" was abbreviated to four letters. It looks as if words have been added and the draft corrected. The witness Wetzel told me that the document itself was never issued. In my opinion, it is possible that Minister Rosenberg also intended to cover himself and that, therefore, this document, was presented to him in the form described above. I think it will be essential to question Wetzel in that respect. President Dr. Servatius, in his Statement made before Captain Less, the Appellant's view was that while this was correct, what he said there, as to what was expressed in this document, is also in compliance with orders received from above. What was written in the letter was not the Appellant's opinion, but only the communication of orders received from his superiors. Dr. Servatius In my opinion, this is one of the attempts of reconstruction on the basis of the documents produced. He did not remember the incident. He says that he was not involved in the affair, but if the document exists in that form, it has to be assumed that it is correct. Then he says, in that case "I probably received orders from my superiors." In respect of other incidents as well, this was his explanation. May I add that the version that the document was forged does not appeal to me. It seems to me more probable that the solution is to be found in the participation of a number of collaborators and that something was added. However, it is characteristic that the first draft does not contain Eichmann's name. This document is of utmost importance for the Accused. It is of special significance that he did not participate in this event, for the District Court, assuming that he had participated, reached the conclusion that he also participated in later uses of vans for the purpose of killing by gas. However, the name of the Accused is not stated anywhere in documents referring to vans used for killing by gas. In this connection, the use of gas in the extermination camps has to be discussed as well. The statement made in that respect by Hoess, according to which the Accused is charged with having initiated the method of gassing, cannot be correct. Hoess contradicts himself in stating that one of his officers in the SS had, later on, come across this method of gassing. Rather the description given by SS Judge Morgen would seem to be correct. According to this description, the method of using gas for killing was introduced by Brack of the Fuehrer's Chancellery. This method is said to have been used already by Brack's unit in the killing of mentally deficient persons, and these killings by gas are said to have been developed by the Reich Physician, Dr. Grawitz. SS Judge Morgen reports in his testimony - Defence exhibits N/94 and N/95 - that in the investigations at the RSHA which were carried out by him, no orders whatsoever for extermination could be found. It seems that this would have been impossible, since it reflected the authority of the Economic-Administrative Head Office in these affairs. President In all the material extant, is there any document referring to the extermination as being regulated by law? Dr. Servatius No, such a document does not exist. President Dr. Servatius, nevertheless, the extermination took place, you do not deny that. Dr. Servatius No. This witness, SS Judge Morgen, stated, furthermore, that the commander of the camp, Wirth, alleged that he received a direct order from Hitler. Moreover, he reports that Wirth told him that Hoess was his disciple who never learned - that is to say, he [Hoess] had received his orders from Wirth and not from Eichmann. Justice Silberg You mentioned before that somewhere in his notes, Hoess stated that his deputy, Fritzche, was the man who initiated the method of killing by gas. Dr. Servatius I do not know whether the name was Fritzche or Hoefle, but he said that one of his officers had come across this method of killing. Justice Silberg Never mind; but Zyklon B gas was invented later on. The Judgment refers to Zyklon B, and Zyklon B was something new which was invented later on, wasn't it ? Dr. Servatius Probably something else was used at first such as exhaust gas, then something else and eventually Zyklon B. Justice Silberg And the Judgment attributes that to the Accused; he received it from Gerstein. Dr. Servatius I wish to refer to the case of Gerstein later on. I would like to mention that, if the Accused at that time had been involved in exterminations by gas, it is highly improbable that he would have readily admitted having visited such installations. President Dr. Servatius, when the Appellant made his Statement before Captain Less, he could not yet have known what evidence was available against him. I ask you, if a person making a statement does not know exactly which documents exist - would it not be easier to say, "yes, I have seen gassing"? If he makes a different statement, perhaps a document exists disproving his reply. Therefore, it is simpler to say, "I have seen it," which is true. In that way he admits having seen it. Dr. Servatius That is possible, but I think most people would prefer to close their eyes to such crimes rather than open the doors wide, in order to make them visible. I believe that the Accused would not have mentioned gassings in connection with Guenther. He stated in that respect that Guenther had once mentioned something to him about gas, and he reproached him for meddling in such matters. I shall now refer to the Gerstein affair, that is to say the procurement of prussic acid. It is not the Accused who is mentioned here, but Guenther of the staff of his Section. The implication of Department IV is in contradiction to the structure of both Head Offices. It was stressed repeatedly in the Lower Court that, strangely, Guenther's name always appears in connection with medical affairs, so that it has to be assumed that he had a special assignment to arrange these matters. I shall now revert to another subject, the collection of skeletons at the University of Strasbourg. Incriminating documents have been produced by which the Accused was asked for help in this matter. However, the answer to these documents, from which his involvement might be deduced, is missing. From the administrative point of view, this matter did not come within the scope of the Accused's duties. Neither could this authority be conferred upon him by a unilateral approach being made to him. A hint that the Accused was not actively involved in this matter is to be found in the fact that, in his meticulously kept diary, the director of Ahnenerbe (Ancestral Heritage), Sievers, does not mention the Accused's co_operation. Instead, again Guenther's name comes up. Possibly Guenther was given a special assignment to deal with this matter, in the same way as in the matter of the supply of gas. President Dr. Servatius, the Judgment reads somewhat differently. It states that Sievers approached Gluecks, the Superintendent of Concentration Camps, and Gluecks referred him to the Appellant. A conversation took place between Sievers and the Appellant, who said that he would need a letter from Himmler. After this letter was issued, instructions were given by the Appellant's Section to Auschwitz. What is the connection with the fact that Gluecks, who had been requested to provide the collection of skeletons from Auschwitz, referred him to the Appellant? Dr. Servatius The Accused's explanation was as follows: He had no authority in this matter; it was dealt with by Oberdienststellenleiter Brack who did not know who was the person competent to deal with it and thought that the Accused had the authority. He gave him these instructions. The Accused said that, at any rate, he did not deal with the matter, and his name was not mentioned in writing. I leave it to the Court to draw its conclusions. President No. My question was directed to the following point: Gluecks is approached with the view of making available Jews for the purpose of tests and experiments. If the Appellant dealt only with matters of transportation, how do you explain the fact that Gluecks referred him [Brack] to the Accused? He dealt only with matters of transportation, he was a subordinate of low rank. Well, how did Gluecks know that it was precisely the Appellant who had to be approached? Dr. Servatius The Accused relies on the following argument: I did not have any authority, and if an unauthorized person sent such a letter, this could not make me responsible, and I did not take such a responsibility upon myself. I did not give a reply nor did I do anything. Justice Silberg Dr. Servatius, the Accused, Appellant, has admitted having received T/1365, the letter from Brand to Eichmann dated 6 November 1942. He has admitted having received that letter. At the end of the letter, it states that "as to particulars, Sievers will contact you," that is to say Eichmann, the Accused. Does this not prove that Sievers was right in saying that he had met the Accused?
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