Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Judgment/Judgment-056 Last-Modified: 1999/05/27 174. In his evidence before us, the Accused tried, as was his wont, to limit his personal role, and he argued that in fact he did not even make use of the authority he possessed, and never put forward any proposals of his own. At the same time, he admitted that every draft prepared by the officials of his Section had to be approved by him. Accordingly, he was asked (Session 106, Vol. IV, p.xxxx5): "...whether everything issued by your Section had first to pass through your hands, or, in your absence, the hands of your permanent deputy and be initialled by you, or, in your absence, by him?" To this the Accused replied: "Yes, this was so." During the same session (p. 7), internal correspondence of the German Foreign Ministry was placed before the Accused. From this correspondence it appears that the head of section (Referent) made a certain proposal, which went up to the Minister for Foreign Affairs via the department head, and returned to the section head after the minister had inserted a certain correction. The Accused agreed that in the Foreign Ministry it was the custom for the section head to put forward proposals. And when it was put to the Accused (p. 11) that it was difficult to understand why the same procedure did not apply to his own Section, he could only find the following reply: "...On the Jewish Question there were so many instructions, so many orders...so many points of contact with the central governing authorities, with all the Party authorities, that it was altogether difficult for the State Police to deal with this and to do what all the authorities wanted. Its hands were full, occupied with executive work. The orders and the aims used to contradict each other. They interfered in everything, they demanded and requested, and this is why there was not even any need to make suggestions. Not only my Section was not called upon to make proposals, even Mueller, as a general rule, was not called upon to make suggestions. Everything that the police did here was by way of carrying out the requests of others who were exerting pressure, making requests, making demands, and making numerous suggestions." There is no doubt that other authorities in the Third Reich also sought to show their ability in the handling of Jewish affairs. But this explanation that the RSHA as whole was only the servant of others does not appear to us to be worthy of serious consideration, and we therefore reject it. Huppenkothen, who was a Section Head in Department IV of the RSHA, gave evidence about Mueller's work methods. The gist of his statement is that Mueller had a strong tendency "to do everything by himself as far as possible" (p. 6 of the testimony), but the witness adds that this tendency was especially felt in Mueller's special field of interest, which was the war against Communism. Similarly, Huppenkothen confirms (p. 8) that Mueller would at times pass individual cases for action to sections which actually had no competence in the matter, or devolve duties on a specific official, without the knowledge of the authorized Referent, and there were complaints about this practice. This phenomenon was also connected particularly, but not solely, with Mueller's special field, the war against Communism. Mueller did not rush to make decisions (p. 9) but in all unusual cases asked for instructions from above, and this also limited the activities of his own subordinates. There were also complaints about this, but Huppenkothen does not remember the Accused complaining. Here we shall mention the following statement made by the witness: "It often happened that Mueller did not approve the orders submitted to him without further discussion, but altered them or addressed questions to his superiors." (pp. 9-10) Six, who was Head of Department VII in the RSHA until 1941, gave evidence about the status of the Accused himself in the RSHA (pp. 4-6 of his evidence): "The authority which Eichmann had is not known to me in detail, but there is no doubt that he had greater authority than the other Heads of Sections. This was the general opinion in the RSHA. The general impression was that Eichmann was not merely subordinate to Mueller, but to some extent already stood alongside him. Mueller was known as one of the worst whips, and I must say that the two matched each other well. It can be assumed that, had Eichmann been under somebody else's orders, and not Mueller's, he would not have had such wide powers as he in fact had...in line with his whole attitude, Eichmann did not go beyond the instructions had been given." Wisliceny gave evidence at Nuremberg (T/58, p. 2) that special powers had been given to the Accused by the Head of the Security Police and by Mueller, and he continued as follows (p. 8): "I know that Eichmann dealt cautiously with all the questions relating to his special task, and especially with all the files. In every respect, he was the complete bureaucrat. He immediately prepared a memorandum on every conversation he had with any of his superiors. He always used to remark to me that this was the most important thing, that he should always be covered from above. He himself refrained from taking personal responsibility and made every effort to obtain cover for his responsibility vis-a-vis his superiors, i.e., Mueller and Kaltenbrunner." It is difficult to understand Huppenkothen's statement with regard to the Accused's status. In his sworn affidavit dated 18 July 1946 (T/159), he said: "The Jewish Section (IVB4, afterwards IVA4b) and its director, Eichmann, held a special position in Department IV." Huppenkothen's evidence in this case shows a clear desire on his part to retract these remarks in the affidavit he had given earlier. To that end, he used special terminology, according to which he makes a distinction between (a) Sonderstellung, (b) besondere Stellung, (c) Ausnahmestellung, expressions which even a person well versed in the German language would have difficulty in distinguishing one from the other (if indeed any distinction exists). In spite of this semantic hair-splitting, Huppenkothen now again confirms that the Accused had "special status" (`besondere Stellung') in Department IV (p. 7). Morgen, who had judicial duties in the SS, also gave evidence at Nuremberg as a witness for the defence on behalf of the SS, and his testimony was submitted to us by Counsel for the Defence (N/94). Morgen stated there that, during the Third Reich, he had investigated the question of the extermination of the Jews and in mid-1944 had come upon mention of the Accused's activities. He continues (p. 51): "I requested the SS court in Berlin to conduct the investigation against Eichmann on the basis of my comments. Therefore the SS court in Berlin submitted an order for Eichmann's arrest to Kaltenbrunner as the person competent in judicial matters (Gerichtsherr). Dr. Bechmann (apparently the judge who submitted the order to Kaltenbrunner) told me that dramatic incidents then took place. Kaltenbrunner immediately summoned Mueller, and the judge was then told that an arrest was absolutely out of the question, because Eichmann was carrying out top secret duties, of the highest importance, on behalf of the Fuehrer." 176. All these testimonies and affidavits, even the cautious evidence of Huppenkothen, point to the Accused's strong and influential position in the RSHA, and are incompatible with the tendency of the Accused to represent himself as having been devoid of any initiative or influence from 1941 onwards. Of course, the statements by these witnesses must be examined carefully, for at least some of them were accomplices, and therefore their statements require corroboration, and not only in a formal sense. Corroboration of this kind comes from the Accused himself. Exhibit T/1393 (File No. 17 of the Sassen Document) contains remarks and notes in the Accused's handwriting, and exhibit T/1393/a contains the same extracts from Sassen's own document to which the remarks in exhibit T/1393 refer, and without which the remarks are unintelligible. These extracts were taken from the Sassen Document with the consent of the Attorney General and the Counsel for the Defence, and we regard them as authenticated by the Accused's handwritten remarks (Session 75, Vol. IV. p. xxx26). In the first extract (p. 1 of T/1393/a) the Accused relates an incident which occurred between himself and Wolff, Himmler's adjutant, who held the rank of general (Obergruppenfuehrer). Wolff requested that a certain person not be deported, and the Accused refused to comply with this request. Wolff became angry and remarked that the Accused was only an Obersturmbannfuehrer, whereas he himself was an Obergruppenfuehrer. To this the Accused replied: "Yes, Obergruppenfuehrer, I know that, but may I be permitted to reply that you are now speaking to the State Secret Police and to the Referent of the Secret Police Office, Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann." Here we shall mention again the cable from Veesenmayer (T/1215) in which he reports the Accused's opposition to the emigration of Jews from Hungary. What was the meaning of this opposition? The Accused could not reconcile himself to the order, which was known to him, of the Fuehrer himself, lest some thousands of Jews might escape the general slaughter. Here, is revealed before us not a bureaucratic official, but a man with a will of his own, who feels his own power to the point that even the Fuehrer's order no longer represents an unalterable decision for him.
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