The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Sessions/Session-091-02

Archive/File: people/e/eichmann.adolf/transcripts/Sessions/Session-091-02
Last-Modified: 1999/06/12

Dr. Servatius, would you obtain a sworn statement from this
witness as early as possible. Time is very short now, and
from that we shall see what position the Attorney General
will take. We shall reserve his right to ask that the
witness be brought here, to be examined.

Dr. Servatius:  Yes, I agree. I shall immediately establish
telegraphic communication with the witness, and in
particular I want to find out whether he is prepared to come

Presiding Judge: Yes, would you check that, too. That might
have an effect, too. The idea is - a notarized statement,
apparently as practiced under Dutch law, with which I am not
familiar - a statement which will specify all the facts
known to this witness.

Judge Raveh:   Including the sources of such knowledge.

Presiding Judge: Yes, including the sources of his
knowledge; and get him to attach the documents which he has
in his possession, if any.

Dr. Servatius:  I shall take the necessary steps.

Presiding Judge: Thank you.

I see, Mr. Hausner, that this time you have submitted a list
of the documents, and I thank you for this. But it has
arrived late, and therefore we have not had a chance to
prepare it. I have no doubt that you are doing the best you

Attorney General: Yes, this will be taken care of, as of
this afternoon.

Presiding Judge: We shall now proceed with the cross-
examination of the Accused. I remind the Accused that he is
still testifying under oath.

Accused:    Yes, I am aware of that.

Attorney General: Accused, last Friday you stated in your
testimony that some time after the outbreak of World War II,
you travelled with Stahlecker to the occupied part of
Poland, to the Generalgouvernement. When did you make this

Accused:    I cannot remember today just when this took
place, when exactly, but it was, at any rate, when that part
which we visited was free of war; in fact, I actually went
as far as the Russian-German demarcation line, as we had to
travel through a section of the Russian-occupied zone, and I
still remember that a commissar of what was then the G.P.U.
travelled with us as an escort through this zone of joint
occupation, or Russian zone. I don't remember which. That
helps me in fixing the time when this must have taken place.

Q.  At that time, how long did you stay in occupied Polish

A.  In my judgment, it was no more that two or three days.

Q.  This was, then, prior to 19 September  1939, the day on
which the border between the German Reich and the Soviet
Union was demarcated.

A.  I think it must have been after that date, because the
demarcation line was already an established concept, except
that in order to travel a certain route one had to cross the
Soviet-occupied area, and there the commissar of the Soviet
border patrol accompanied us. Therefore, it must have been
after the date of that agreement.

Q.  By what route did you travel?

A.  I can't remember exactly. It was, in any event, the
Radom sector of the Lublin district, in any case in that
area, around the River San. Furthermore, I think the route
can be determined pretty accurately, because I think, there
weren't too many border crossings open for passage on foot
or by vehicle, under the Soviet-German agreement.

Q.  I do not want you to state anything for the future. I
want to hear from you through which cities you passed, and
which places you saw in occupied Poland.

A.  At any rate I did get to Nisko on the San; this I
remember vividly.

Q.  And you saw the tortures, the butchering, the murders
which the German occupiers carried out upon the Jews of
Poland, beginning with the first days of the occupation.

A.  I saw neither murders nor tortures. At that time I did
not have any knowledge at all that such things were
happening, and at this moment I cannot even say whether this
had actually occurred at that time. At the time I was there,
not only did I not see such things, I did not even hear

Presiding Judge: I wish to say right away that I want  no
public participation in this trial. If anything like this
should happen, I shall take the appropriate measures, and I
do not want to repeat this.

Attorney General: We have heard a number of witnesses here
as to what the armies of occupation did in the first weeks,
on the first days. They saw it; they felt it in person. You
did not see anything?

Accused:    How should I hear things like that, or even see
them, when I was sitting in Berlin at my desk, and had
nothing at all to do with this?

Q.  I am asking about your journey, on official business,
from Berlin to Nisko. I am asking about your visits to the
Polish cities - to Lublin, to the Silesian cities, to
Katowice, to Sosnowiec. Didn't you see anything there?

A.  I saw nothing there. Moreover, these visits did not take
place at that particular time, but later. It is, of course,
clear that en route to Lublin, I would have passed through
other cities. In any case, as to that you alluded to, Mr.
Attorney General, I have neither seen nor heard anything.

Q.  Do you agree with me that the participants at the
Conference which took place at Heydrich's office on 21
September 1939, heard from him about the plan which had
already taken shape in his mind - which was a plan for the
total extermination.

A.  This is a meeting where my name was mentioned, but in
which I did not participate, because I could not have
participated since I was not Chief of a Department or
Commander of a Special Operations Unit.

Q.  I am not asking you about your participation, at this
moment. Jump when your turn comes. At this moment I am not
asking you about your participation.

Presiding Judge: What do you mean by "jumping"?

Attorney General: He is not replying to my question, Sir. He
is talking about himself: He was not there. No one asked him
about his participation.

[To the Accused) I am asking you: Was it clear to the
participants of that meeting that Heydrich did, at that
time, bring up a plan for a Final Solution?

Accused:    I did not take part. I cannot say anything
definite about it, but I can say one thing, after having
read the document: I do not doubt that whatever is written
there may be true and would have to be true, because it did,
after all, happen in this way later, in point of fact.

Attorney General: In your testimony to the police, you said
that it was clear to you from reading the document that
Heydrich, on that day, laid down two aims for those Special
Operations Units then operating in Poland: - this is on
pages 3141 and 3142: a short-range target, and a long-range

The short-range target: territorial concentration,
ghettoization, denial of rights; the long-range target:
extermination. Is that correct?

Accused:    Yes, that I have gathered from the documents. I,
of course, was not in Berlin in those days; I was in Prague.
That is why I cannot say anything from my own knowledge.

Q.  What can we do, though, if your name appears among those
attending the meeting, as listed in document T/164. You are
described with great precision: Your rank -
Hauptsturmfuehrer; your name: - Eichmann; your job: - Jewish
Emigration Centre (Juedische Auswanderungszentrale). Is that
not correct? This is an official document.

A.  It is not correct. I would like to refer to the
testimony of one participant at that conference, the man who
was my ranking superior at that time, Professor Dr. Six, who
has confirmed - although he did not say only favourable
things about me - that I did not participate in such
deliberations, while he did participate in such a meeting,
every three to four weeks. Had I attended, Six would have
surely and most definitely testified differently.
Furthermore, the document is not signed.

Q.  Again, you are trying to falsify testimonies. Six did
not say that you had not attended that meeting. All that Six
said was that you did not take part at the regular
conferences of Department Chiefs; that, and no more. But
this was not a regular meeting of Department Chiefs. This
was a meeting of the Operations Units, and you did take part
in it, as it says in the transcript and as you have admitted
in your interrogation in Bureau 06.

A.  I did not take part in this, and I have to protest
against the assertion that this is again a falsification on
my part. I have falsified nothing, and I would not dream of
falsifying anything. Furthermore, may I point out that there
is enough proof that at that time I had no business yet
whatsoever in Berlin, but was located in Prague and in
Vienna. I was occupied with emigration, and with nothing

Q.  But in your interrogation by the police, you said on
page 3151: "I can only say about this that I am unable to
remember taking part in this meeting. Naturally there is no
doubt about this, because I am in fact listed here." Do you
wish to withdraw what you said?

A.  It is not only this which I must withdraw. There are
quite a lot of other things which I must take back from my
statements here; after studying the documents, I realized
that my assumptions were quite often wide off the mark and
both, to my disadvantage and to the contrary, also to my
advantage. It is only the wealth of documents which has
improved my recollection, so that today I am more or less
able to make an approximately correct statement about those
instances which I do not directly recall or remember. It is
very difficult if one is asked about something which
happened, and is shown just one single document, and then
one has to comment on it. I have tried to do this to the
best of my ability and conscience, and I said yesterday that
I was trying to reconstruct things, and I admitted as much
then as well.

Q. But Accused, you had a general rehearsal just three years
ago, or less, in the shape of everything you said in a
series of presentations you made to Sassen about everything
that had taken place. So it is not a question of sixteen
years having lapsed - you have refreshed your memory
perfectly well in the meantime.

A. When I look at Tape 17, where I sat down quietly and
wrote things down in my own handwriting, I must say:
"Indeed, here I had hours of quiet reflection at the ranch
where I worked." I reject the others, because there were too
many machinations connected with this. It was not a general
rehearsal, because I did not read any background material to
any notable extent, nor did I have any documents at all.

Q.  Is it true that your talks with Sassen lasted four
months, and were recorded on 67 tapes?

A.  I have no recollection of the details. I cannot remember
today how long they lasted.

Q. Four months, is that not true?

A. I do not know if it was four months.

Q. When did you read Reitlinger?

A. Reitlinger I have never - I only read here. The fact that
Reitlinger existed, and my even having leafed through it,
that might have been in 1956-1959. I did  not read it until
I was in prison here.

Q. And Poliakov?  When did you read him?

A. The same as Reitlinger, I did not read this until I was
in prison. And as proof of this I can cite...

Q. Without proof.  Can you say when this was?

A. In prison here. I knew that both Reitlinger and Poliakov
existed, and I also leafed through Poliakov's black book at
the same time as I leafed through the Reitlinger. It would
have been better if I had read it, because then I would have
been able to give much clearer testimony here. I myself
regretted that I read these two books so late, after the end
of my Statement to the police.

Q.  Sassen asked you questions from books. From which books
did he ask you questions and read passages to you?

A.  I do not know. I cannot say in detail today.

Q. But that was not sixteen years ago; that was three years
ago. And it took months.

A. I have said that I do not remember, because it was not an
interrogation: we sat over a bottle of wine. And it came out
over a period of time. I must reject the results, because
they were not what was intended nor, desired nor wished for;
it came about against my wishes.

Q. You did not know that what you said was being recorded?
Did Sassen do that surreptitiously?

A.  If even in a transcript of Tape 17 distorting errors
occur, all the more so when a tape is being listened to.

Q.  I ask whether you were aware that your words were being
tape-recorded? On that I want an answer: "yes" or "no."

A.  Obviously I knew that.

Q.  And you want to tell us that today you no longer know
from which books Sassen quoted to you?

A.  This I cannot tell you, because actually there were

Q.  Which books?

A.  I am under oath and I cannot simply chatter away, and
simply say something which I do not know with full

Q.  What do you know with full certainty?

A.  What I do know with full certainty is that I haven't
read [the transcripts of] tapes 1-17, and do not know today
anymore what I said at that time.

Q.  I am not asking you which [transcripts of] tapes you
read. I am asking from what books Sassen quoted to you?

A.  I have to stand by what I said. I don't know this. I
cannot just stand here and tell stories. It is possible that
books by Poliakov and Reitlinger were included, and the book
by Brandt was also included. Other than that I cannot say.
Neither do I know whether these matters were read out to me
from the books or whether he prepared himself, and quoted to
me from a slip of paper. All that I do not know.

Q.  Did he also have documents in his hands from which he
quoted to you. Is that correct?
A.  I am not aware of that. I don't know.

Q.  For instance, the order which you transmitted to
Globocnik to murder 250,000 Jews; that he read out to you,
isn't that correct?

A.  I hear this for the first time. Of that, I am entirely

Q.  We will return to that when we are able to refresh your
memory some more. Let us come back to Heydrich. You were the
person who was Heydrich's plenipotentiary for Jewish affairs
- is that right?

A.  No, that is not right; that is wrong.

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