Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Judgment/Judgment-068 Last-Modified: 1999/05/27 231. Out of this soil of hatred for the Jews grew the actions of the Accused, and it is clear that mere blind obedience could never have brought him to commit the crimes which he committed with such efficiency and devotion as he evinced, were it not for his zealous belief that he was thereby fulfilling an important national mission. We have already seen the Accused's position within the RSHA apparatus, which was a key position in the implementation of the Final Solution. It is true that in matters of principle he received orders from above, and these orders decided for him the various stages of implementation. But within this general framework he still had much scope left, in working out the details of implementation which were entrusted to him. This, too, was a considerable, and ramified task when taking into account the manifold activities needed to round up the Jews in their countries, to deport them for extermination, and to remove all obstacles which stood in the way of these activities. The Accused also headed of a widespread establishment of officials, who obeyed his orders and whom he set to work, constantly supervising them and spurring them on. All this required a great deal of initiative, continuous thought and consistent striving towards the end in view. 232. Here, we shall mention another of the Accused's arguments, which is also entirely devoid of foundation: that the Nazi apparatus was, as it were, divided into two sections - one consisting of those who gave orders, bearing full responsibility; and the other of those who received orders, who were supposed only to obey, and carried no burden of responsibility. It is a well-known fact that in the Nazi regime, which was based on the principle of leadership, every rank, except Hitler himself, both received and gave orders. And, as is customary in any hierarchical regime, an order becomes more and more detailed and takes on flesh and blood as it is passed down from one level to the next. Certainly the Accused was not only a channel for the passing on of an order as received, without change of form and content. Had it been as he says, had he done his work in a purely routine manner, he would have been removed from office, and someone else would have been put in his place, because the activities of Section IVB4 were far from being routine. But it was not so, for the Accused was praised by his direct superior, Mueller, who said of him: "If we had had fifty Eichmanns, we should automatically have won the War" (Session 98, Vol. IV, pp. xxxx17-18; T/1432 (6)). We do not believe the Accused that this statement referred only to his last activities, namely the preparation of his office building in readiness for the Battle of Berlin, but that it was a concise evaluation of all his activities carried out under Mueller. 233. There is a great deal of evidence indicative of this attitude of the Accused, in his very acts and in his declarations on various occasions, as has been proved to us. No single case brought to our notice, revealed the Accused as showing any sign of human feelings in his dealings with Jewish affairs, except when, according to his own words, he helped the daughter of his uncle (his stepmother's brother), who was half-Jewish, and one more Jewish couple, on whose behalf this same uncle intervened (T/37, pp. 114-115). In all his activities the Accused displayed indefatigable energy, verging on overeagerness towards advancing the Final Solution, both in his general decisions and in his treatment of individual cases of Jews who sought to escape death. Many illustrations of this attitude have already been mentioned in this Judgment, in the course of the description of events. We shall add here a few more remarks on this same point. 234. Von Thadden gives evidence (p. 9) that the Accused invariably refused applications for the granting of exceptions. He remembers that, when he once requested the grant of an exception in a certain case, the Accused described his (von Thadden's) approach as "weak-kneed" (knieweich). And in his statement, made in defence of the State Secretary, Steengracht, at Nuremberg (exhibit T/584), von Thadden said that in the opinion of the German Foreign Ministry the immediate deportation of the Jews of Denmark was impossible for political reasons, but the Accused `ironically' informed him that pressure would be brought to bear upon the Foreign Ministry to reconsider its attitude. And after the failure of the action in Denmark - von Thadden continues - Guenther, the Accused's deputy, told him that this was a case of sabotage, seemingly on the part of the German Embassy in Copenhagen, and that the Accused had already reported the matter to the Reichsfuehrer (Himmler) and that he, Eichmann, would demand the head of the saboteur. (Today, von Thadden claims that he can no longer remember the details, but he does not go back on his declaration - p. 13 of his evidence). 235. To make his version of the transaction of "goods for blood" stronger, the Accused relinquishes his argument that he acted only out of routine. Here, he suddenly turns into a man of initiative, who `ponders' things and who conceives a far-reaching plan entirely on his own (Session 86, Vol. IV, p. xxxx12). This version is not worthy of belief, as we have already found above when speaking about the chapter on Hungary, but the very description of matters in this light contradicts that of the colourless figure which the Accused tries to assume. Thus he tells Sassen in a passage submitted by his Counsel (N/100): "I have always worked one hundred per cent, and above all I have thought over matters" (ich habe die Sache durchgedacht) "and when giving orders, I was certainly not lukewarm." Certainly, he was not lukewarm in giving his orders nor in his deeds, but energetic, full of initiative and active to the extreme in his efforts to carry out the Final Solution. He appears thus in September 1941, when his advice was "to kill by shooting" the thousands of Jews of Belgrade, and continued in this manner until the last days of the Third Reich. The representative of the International Red Cross reports these words as coming from the Accused in April 1945: "Concerning the general Jewish problem, Eichmann was of the opinion that Himmler was at that moment about to consider humane methods. Eichmann personally did not entirely approve of these methods, but as a good soldier, he was, of course, blindly following the orders of the Reichsfuehrer." (T/865, p. 3) 236. In this same matter, we shall cite one more episode, described by Justice Musmanno, who heard an account of it from General Koller, of Hitler's entourage. We see no ground to doubt these words of Koller, and were given no reason why Koller should wish to place unjustified blame upon the Accused. This is what happened (Session 39, Vol. II, p. 723-724): In his last days, Hitler ordered the execution of imprisoned Allied airmen. Koller tried to circumvent this order and turned to Kaltenbrunner, because the order was that the airmen be handed over to the SD. Kaltenbrunner granted his request, but then he met with a difficulty because of the attitude of the Accused, who demanded that the Jews from amongst the airmen be executed according to Hitler's order, and he refused to budge from this position. Koller rescued these Jews by mixing them with thousands of other prisoners in the prisoners of war camps, so that it was difficult to identify them. 237. When carrying out the Final Solution, the Accused resorted to the psychological warfare tactics of misleading and confusing the enemy. In this connection, we shall here add only one of many illustrations. At his first meeting with the heads of Hungarian Jewry on 31 March 1944, the Accused gives certain instructions concerning the administration of Jewish institutions, etc. Then he addresses the scared Jews in these glib words: "He emphasized that these instructions would be enforced only for the duration of the War. Later the Jews would be free and could do as they pleased. "Everything happening to the Jews was only for the duration of the War. When the War was over, the Germans would once again be as pleasant (gemuetlich) as before... "He emphasizes that he appreciates frankness and that we, too, must be outspoken with him. He will also be frank with us." This description, from the book by Munczi Ernoe, was confirmed by the Accused himself (Session 103, Vol. III, p. xxxx6; see also the declaration by Dr. Ernoe Petoe - T/1157, p. 3). This, then, is the frank language used by the Accused, whilst the order for the deportation of Hungarian Jewry to Auschwitz is already in his pocket. Such a measure of viciousness can only be shown by a man who does his criminal job wholeheartedly and with all his being. 238. To conclude this chapter, in which we are concerned with the Accused's attitude to his work, we shall mention further utterances by him on various occasions, which reveal his feelings: (a) In answer to a question by the Attorney General during cross-examination about an excerpt from the Sassen Document, wherein the pace of deportation from various countries is discussed, he stated as follows: "I speak of all countries. The same thing happened to us in Slovakia and in France, although there things began in a very hopeful manner (sehr hoffnungsvoll). The same thing happened to us in Holland where, at first, the transports rolled, until one could say that it was marvellous (es war eine Pracht). Only later were difficulties heaped upon difficulties." (T/1432 (21)) And this is the Accused's reaction to this quotation and to what was said there further on: "I cannot say that these things are correct word for word. Many words have no meaning at all... But I must say that these are substantially correct. I cannot say otherwise." (Session 104, Vol. IV, p. xxxx12) Thus, "substantially" this attitude of complete identification with his work is correct - his joy in deporting Jews to their death. This is not the way in which a person who did this horrible work with any inner compunction, or even indifference, would have spoken. (b) While under arrest in Israel, he wrote in his memoirs what he had told Mueller, his superior, at the time: "I was considering the subject of `victory.' I said that I believed that in this way we must lose the War, since by what right were the Jews killed, whilst hundreds of thousands of German scoundrels, criminal and political, were not killed. Such wrongdoing will necessarily avenge itself." (T/44, p. 108) Therefore, his proposal when speaking to Mueller was to resort to the trusted remedy of the Gestapo: "To put 100,000 Germans against the wall." (Session 95, Vol. IV, pp. xxxx29_30) We quote these words here, only to point out the Accused's trend of thought in regard to the extermination of the Jews. He had no inner reservations about the act itself, but only regrets that, together with the Jews, 100,000 Germans were not also exterminated, whose only crime was their opposition to the Nazi regime. The failure to kill these Germans, he believed, would avenge itself. (c) And finally, the Accused's words at the end of the War, that he is ready to "jump into the pit." In this matter, the exact wording must be decided upon first, because there is a serious difference of opinion about it. In his Statement to Superintendent Less, the Accused describes the matter in the following way: During the last days of the War, the men of his Section were depressed. In order to improve their morale, he told them that he was looking forward joyfully to the last battle over Berlin, because what he had in mind was, "if death does not find me, I at least will seek death," and here he quotes his own words: "Millions of German women, children and old people lost their lives in this way, this I said to the men and to the soldiers. For five years millions of the enemy attacked Germany. Millions of enemies were also annihilated, and according to my estimate, the War also cost five million Jews. Now all this is over, the Reich is lost. And should the end come now, I said, I shall also jump into the pit." (T/37, p. 308) And in his evidence before us, in answer to his Counsel (Session 88, Vol. IV, p. xxxx8), his version is: "I told my officers: The end has come, it is all over. The collapse is imminent...therefore, if this is the end of the Reich, then I shall gladly jump into the pit, knowing that in that same pit there are five million enemies of the state." He states categorically that, when mentioning at the time "the enemies of the state," he did not have the Jews in mind, but "the enemy knocking at the gates of the state - the Russians and the fleets of Allied bombers, because they were the enemies of the state." This is also how he explains his words in his remarks on the article in Life magazine (T/51, passage 1).
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