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Shofar FTP Archive File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day011.21

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Last-Modified: 2000/07/20

   Q.   We will just have a look at the pictures in Pressac in a
        moment.  You answered me this morning, I know, but I will
        repeat the question because it is connected.  Are there
        any contemporaneous documents referring to the provision
        of gas stores or any similar equipment for Leichenkeller
   A.   No, there are no documents.
   Q.   What is the size of Leichenkeller 2, the auskleiderkeller,
        as I call it, as compared with Leichenkeller 1?
   A.   The one-third larger or maybe one-half larger than
        Leichenkeller 1.
   Q.   Suppose Mr Irving's thesis is right, the corpses must have
        been undressed in the auskleiderkeller and then dragged
        through to Leichenkeller 1 to be disinfested, yes?
   A.   If he accepts it was an auskleiderkeller, yes.
   Q.   We can see it was from the documents.  We do not have to
        argue about that.  How would the clothes which had been
        removed from the corpses have been deloused in
        Leichenkeller 2?
   A.   The only thing, I think, is to bring them also in
        Leichenkeller 1, to undress the corpses or maybe have the
        corpses dressed, deloused and then everything is deloused
        together, I do not know.  The procedure seems to me so

.          P-186

        absurd to start with that ----
   Q.   I know.  We just have to dot i's and cross t's sometimes.
        That is all.  I said you would find these questions a bit
        silly, I am sure.  The preheating letter of 6th March
        1943:  You told us, I think this morning -- I think you
        said this -- there is no provision for that in any of the
        plans, so you have drawn it in?
   A.   Yes -- no, in the blueprints there is no trace of such a
        preheating installation.
   Q.   No.  Was there a provision for ventilation from the
   A.   Ventilation ----
   Q.   Ventilation.
   A.   --- in morgue No. 1, yes.
   Q.   Was there any preheating provision for Leichenkeller 2?
   A.   No.
   Q.   Then the lift capacity.  Tell me if I have the figures
        right.  I think you said it could take 1500 kilograms?
   A.   They were expanding -- the original one was 750 kilograms
        and they were ordering reinforcement of the cables so that
        it could take 1500 kilos.
   Q.   I am talking about their intentions.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   This is all what I call intentional material.  If the
        average corpse, balancing between young children and fat
        men, if you like, is, say, 60 kilograms, yes?

.          P-187

   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Is that fair?  I do not think in kilogrammes, you see, so
        I have to have your help.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   60 kilograms, then the capacity for each hoist, each
        journey, would be about 25 corpses, would it not?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   The incineration capacity given in the letter of 28th June
        for all five crematoria, but for this one in particular,
        is 1440 corpses per 24 hours, is it not?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   That is, roughly speaking, if you take a 16 hour rather
        than a 24-hour period, about 90 corpses an hour, is it not?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   If it is 90 corpses an hour, then the lift can do more
        than that 90 in 15 minutes?  If it can do 25 corpses a load?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Then in an hour----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  More than four loads an hour?
   A.   Certainly, sir, yes.
   MR RAMPTON:  That is 50, roughly speaking, and you get to 90
        before you got to the end of the hour?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Does that seem to you feasible?

.          P-188

   A.   Yes.  It seems feasible to -- certainly I think the
        elevator could keep up with the ovens.
   Q.   Yes.  That is much more neatly put than I could have put
        it.  Thank you.  There is a document up there which I am
        going to ask you about at the end of this re-examination,
        Professor van Pelt.  I warned Mr Irving that I might.
        First of all, I want to ask one or two tiny little
        questions about this air raid shelter thesis.  This is,
        according to Mr Irving, the alternative use for
        Leichenkeller 1, hence the spy hole and the gas tight door
        and all that kind of thing.  How far are K2 and K3 from
        the SS barracks?
   A.   We can see it in the air photo, No. 5 in tab 2 which we
        just took out ----
   Q.   Yes.
   A.   --- the SS barracks, basically, is in the compound marked
        with "north".  So I would say that since you cannot run
        diagonally or walk diagonally through the camps of BA2
        which is building section 2, you have to go one way or the
        other around it, so it would be around a mile and a half.
   Q.   A mile and a half?
   A.   Mile and a half.
   Q.   Sorry, help me again about that.  Where are the SS
   A.   They are at the bottom in the square thing.  They are at
        the bottom right-hand corner and they show a kind of

.          P-189

        garden design.  There is a kind of a little fountain in
        the middle with a cross, behind what became the Birkenhau
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  But we are on air raid shelters, are we now?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes.  I am just wondering how practical the
        Professor thought it was as a site for an air raid
        shelter, considering it is not big enough to hold the
        whole of the camp population, how practical it was as a
        proposition for the people in the SS barracks?
   A.   It is not practical at all -- neither in distance nor also
        for other reasons.
   Q.   I think you told us also that there was provision for an
        air raid shelter in due course at Auschwitz 1?
   A.   There are many -- I mean, at a certain moment one gets
        small air raid shelters and one gets in the crematorium in
        Auschwitz 1, you get a specific air raid shelter to serve
        the SS hospital which is right next door.
   Q.   When was that air raid shelter first planned?
   A.   In the fall of 1944.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  So afterwards?
   A.   Sorry?  Afterwards.  Long afterwards.
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes.  Can we now just have a look, really so as to
        finish with air raid shelters, at the photographs in
        Pressac because I have been going on about a door with a
        glass spy hole and a metal grille.  It is as well to look
        at them.  My Lord, they are at the back of H2(vi).  If you

.          P-190

        want to use your own Pressac, Professor, please do.
   A.   Which page?
   Q.   That is the trouble.  I am sorry, my Lord.  They are in
        K.  They are very bad copies.  So if your Lordship would
        like, I will lend you my much better copy.  Have you got
        your own Pressac?
   A.   I have Pressac if you give me the page number.
   Q.   Look at your own Pressac.  It is page 486.  Tab 6, my
        Lord.  Page 8 stamped.
   MR RAMPTON:  K2, tab 6.  I think it is K1.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes.  I do not think it is K2.
   MR RAMPTON:  No, it is not.  It is K2.  It is a fold out sheet,
        my Lord.  8 stamped in the right-hand corner.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Yes, I have it.  Thank you.
   MR RAMPTON:  Some questions, just a very few, about these
        photographs, Professor.  Do you know when and by whom they
        were taken?
   A.   They were taken by, I think, the Dawidowski Commission,
        the Jan Sehn and Dawidowski.
   Q.   As you told the court, the 30 by 40 centimetre gas type
        shutters, some of them have been preserved, have they not?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   These not, however, is that right?
   A.   They are not.  I have looked for them.  I have never seen
        them.  Nobody ever could tell me where they were.

.          P-191

   Q.   In the photograph on the right, headed "Document 13", we
        see the metal grille over the spy hole, do we not?
   A.   Yes.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  This came from where, do we know?
   MR RAMPTON:  Well, I think it says Dawidowski and in this sense
        this says Warsaw Central Commission archives.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  No, what I really meant was is the contention
        this is Leichenkeller 1 in crematorium (ii)?
   MR RAMPTON:  Yes, these are thought to be the gas type doors
        referred to in the correspondence -- what is it gasturm 8
        millimetre ----
   A.   Yes, gastur.
   MR IRVING:  With respect, I think his Lordship is asking do
        they come from Auschwitz or Birkenhau.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I was asking, yes, I suppose, in effect, it
        come to that.  I mean, this is Leichenkeller 1 in
        crematoria (ii), you say?
   A.   The thing is these doors -- it is the problem is we do not
        have measurements of the doors in the photos.  What we
        know is that when the Leichenkeller 1 gas chamber was
        taken apart in late 1945, materials were stored at the
        Bauhoff.  The Bauhoff was, basically, a large yard where
        they kept building materials and also things of buildings
        they had used and thought of reusing in the future again,
        or where they thought of shipping somewhere else.  So
        these doors were found at the Bauhoff.  There was no label

.          P-192

        attached to the doors and there was also no measurement in
        here.  So the original door is 100 centimetres wide and
        192 centimetres high.  So, unlike the gas type shutters
        which are still available for inspection, and which,
        indeed, are 30 by 40 centimetres, you know, it is
        possible, it is likely, probable, but cannot be absolutely
        certain about it, no.
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  Where has the physical door gone?
   A.   The physical door?
   Q.   The door of which one is looking at the photograph?
   A.   I do not know.  I have asked people.
   Q.   It has disappeared?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   I see.  Anyway, you say it is probably ----
   MR RAMPTON:  I was going just ----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY: --- Leichenkeller 1.
   MR RAMPTON:  --- to build that up a little bit further because
        there is a letter -- can you remind of the date when
        Bischoff is writing to the internal manufacturer, or the
        Auschwitz manufacturer, that he wants a gas type door
        exactly the same as the one -- do you know the one I mean?
   A.   I know the letter.  I just -----
   MR JUSTICE GRAY:  I have it, it is page 44.
   MR RAMPTON:  I am most grateful.
   MR RAMPTON:  It is tab?

.          P-193

   MR RAMPTON:  Tab 4, Professor.
   A.   Yes, I am here.
   Q.   On 31st March 1943, Bischoff writes to the manufacturer
        and he says in the second paragraph that he wants a gas
        door 100 by 192 centimetres for Leichenkeller 1 at
        crematorium (iii) BW30A, the same design, and what is
        "mass", size ----
   A.   "Size", yes.
   Q.   --- as the keller door of the opposite crematorium (ii)
        with a spy hole from double 8 millimetre glass with a
        sealing, a gasket -- "gummidichtunng" be rubber sealing?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   A rubber sealing.  What is a beschlag?
   A.   That would be some kind of metal edge or ring.  It is
        mostly metal work which you apply to something else.  In
        this case to wood.
   Q.   So it follows, does it not, as night follows from day,
        that both Leichenkellers in crematoria (ii) and (iii) had
        a gas type door of this description?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   The description in the letter?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   We know also, do we not, that Tauber described just such a
        door in his testimony?
   A.   Yes.

.          P-194

   Q.   Does this picture correspond with the description in this
        letter and the description given by Tauber?
   A.   It does correspond with it.  I would like to make one
   Q.   Yes.
   A.   It is of course always possible that these were doors for
        crematoria 4 and 5, because we do not have the final
        measurements, but I presume that they would have been
        designed in the same way.
   Q.   If you look at the picture on the left, document 11, yes,
        that is necessarily -- sorry, I will not say.  That has
        not got the metal grill on the spy hole, has it?
   A.   It does not because we are looking at the outside.
   Q.   Please let me take it in stages.
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   It does not have the metal grill?
   A.   It does not have the metal grill.
   Q.   It does have, I do not know what you call the thing, it is
        a sort of a bolt?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   And probably the bolt, although it is impossible to tell
        from the picture precisely, goes in that direction, so
        that one can imagine that it is going to do that?
   A.   Yes.
   Q.   Fit into a slot or arm?
   A.   Yes.

.          P-195

   Q.   Look at the hinges.
   A.   I see the hinges.
   Q.   You see the hinges.  Does the shape of the hinges tell you
        anything about the direction in which the door will open?
   A.   The door opens outwards.

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