Archive/File: people/i/irving.david/libel.suit/transcripts/day024.15 Last-Modified: 2000/07/24 Q. I am only going to ask you one question about this because I think we accept what happened there, that killings began, but this is going to be now questions B to start with, the fact that the killings began, is there any indication that they began as a direct result of these orders and guidelines or did they just begin of their own accord like a spontaneous combustion? A. No. We have, I think, quite good documentation because we have Heydrich's order of 29th and Heydrich's letter to the highest SS police leader of ---- Q. I think the 2nd July. . P-129 A. --- 2nd July which actually gives you a very clear idea what the task of the Einsatzgruppen was. Q. The 2nd July one which, my Lord, I am afraid I still have not translated for your Lordship -- we are working on it -- this is 2nd July 1941 where Heydrich, am I correct, says to the people in the Baltic states: "If pogrom start, you are not to stop them and, in fact, you are to help them along"? A. Yes. I ---- Q. "But don't let it be seen"? A. I think I translated this in the second part of my report. This is at page 6, and if you look at the English translation, I have to say here that I have, unfortunately, made a mistake here which I have to correct because if you read this indented paragraph "To be executed are", you have to add the word "or" to the first line, "To be executed are all" and then it goes on "functionaries of the Comintern", and so on, so that the word "all" ---- MR JUSTICE GRAY: So all of the lot of them? A. "All" also relates to the last line, "All Jews in Party and State functions", so this is the way the original German document is arranged. So we know from this document that Heydrich ordered the Einsatzgruppen to execute all Jews and part -- all Jews in Party and State functions and the more, I think most interesting word in . P-130 this "all" is the next line which you find on page 7 and "other, and all other radical elements including", the most important word is I think the "etc." in the end, which says, "Well, this is not a definite list of the people we are going to kill". You know, you actually, you know, can add to the list. You can add saboteurs, propagandists, snipers, assassins and agitators, others who fall into this category. MR IRVING: But am I right in saying ---- A. My interpretation of this order is that this is a kind of open, very general order which appeals to the initiative of the men in the field. They can actually go and extend the killings if they find it appropriate, if it is feasible. Q. An umbrella order? A. Sorry? Q. It is a kind of umbrella order? A. Yes. Also, there is no indication in this order who actually is to be spared. It does not say, for instance, it is not allowed to shoot women. Q. Why should it not be allowed to shoot women? A. Well, it is not said in this order here. Q. If there is a woman kommissar she was going to be spared, or a woman sniper? A. Then would assume that this is a Jew in party or state function, or it is one of the propagandists, saboteurs . P-131 snipers, and so on. So I think this is not ---- Q. Dr Longerich, I really want to come to this July 2nd document tomorrow when we deal with your second report, but I do draw attention to your footnote there, the second line from the bottom, the only Jews who are actually included in that are the Jews in party and state positions who are on the shooting list. A. Yes, and the word "etc." in the end, I think in my interpretation ---- Q. That could mean anything. It could mean the milkmen and everybody else, could it not? A. Yes, everybody else, everybody Jew or non-Jew who was suspicious from the point of view of the Nazis, the invaders. Q. Can I now take you back to page 57, where we are looking at the Einsatzgruppen? A. Yes. Q. I take it from your footnote that you have not made any use of the police decodes that are in the Public Record Office? A. I have looked at the police decodes, both in the collection here and also at the collection in Washington. I have seen several hundred of them, not more. Q. Since you wrote this report or before that? A. I saw the Washington decodes about two years ago and the ones here after I finished the report, I think. . P-132 Q. Just a subsidiary question: How would you rate the decodes as a source? Are they really pure gold, untouched and unimpeachable integrity as a source? A. In the sense that they are authentic? Q. Authentic and likely to contain something approximating to the truth? A. We have actually the chance in some cases to complete the deciphers with the German originals in this case. Q. Compare them? A. Sorry, compare them, and in this case it is clear that they are authentic. The problem with the deciphers is that they are relating to the order police, which is one branch of the German police. A second problem is that the German would use, as far as I am aware, a different code for the highest class of classified documents. They would not use this code. The Einsatzgruppen would not send their messages through the order police system. It is clear from one of the deciphers from September that the Germans were aware of the danger that the codes could be broken and the Deluger sent an order to say what actually ---- Q. Keep the figures up or something? A. Be quite cautious here what you are sending. Also, we do not know how comprehensive actually the work of the deciphers were. Is this everything they got? Is this the whole communication of the German police? So I think we . P-133 will spend, as historians always spend, a lot of time actually to assessing this document and to find out to which extent it will help us to understand the killings better than we did before. Q. I have to take up two points. First of all, you say that because it is the Ordnungs Polizei, the order police, it does not contain a high level of material, but we have seen in this courtroom messages from Himmler to Jeckeln, and that is of course at the very highest level, is it not? A. The high SS police leader would use the communication system of the order police. That is possible, yes. Q. Would you accept, having spent some time looking at these decodes, that they are a pretty random selection, that they are not methodologically skewed in any way? Although it is not 100 per cent, the volume of documents that has been left for us to look at is a random collection of many hundreds of thousands of items? A. I am not sure what the numbers -- what I am trying to say is, if you look at the deciphers, you cannot be sure that the deciphers contain the whole radio communication between, let us say, Himmler and Jeckeln, for instance. I have no way to find out how comprehensive and how representative this collection is. But of course it adds to our knowledge. Q. Yes. You did not have those, just to make this quite . P-134 plain, at your disposal when you wrote this report? A. I looked into some of the Washington files. Q. The Washington files are not as complete as the British files? A. Yes, exactly. Q. Yes. A. I had the Washington files in front of me when I wrote the report, and I did not include them here because what I have seen in Washington for me -- for instance, I did not find in Washington the Himmler Jeckeln correspondence and I did not spend enough time probably on it, but there is nothing in it which actually I thought was valuable enough to include it into the report. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Mr Irving, could you put, really for my benefit as much as anybody else's, to Dr Longerich what it is you say about the decodes that is significant. MR IRVING: I am just about to come to that very point, my Lord. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Good. MR IRVING: You say you were not at that time familiar with the Himmler and Jeckeln decodes? A. Yes. Q. Have you in the meantime had a chance to look at them? A. Yes. Q. I am referring here to the decodes of November 30th, the telephone call from Himmler to Heydrich on November 30th, . P-135 and principally I am going to ask you now about the deeds codes of December 1st 1941. A. Yes. Q. There are three? A. Yes. Q. The first one is a message from Jeckeln to Himmler on the morning. My Lord, do you want to have the items in front of you? MR JUSTICE GRAY: I am trying to follow but the documents are now even more scattered about. MR RAMPTON: No, they are not. MR IRVING: They should now be ---- MR RAMPTON: They are now collected in here. MR JUSTICE GRAY: I know, but I had marked the previous versions of them, that is the problem, and these are all in German. MR RAMPTON: No, they are not. MR IRVING: I have translated them. MR RAMPTON: Wherever possible the English has been put opposite the German. MR JUSTICE GRAY: 31st December? MR IRVING: 1st December, my Lord. A. Page 142, if I am right on this, in this blue bundle. MR JUSTICE GRAY: Thank you very much. MR IRVING: There should be three altogether. The first one is page 141. This is 9.15 in the morning. This is from the . P-136 senior SS police commander, north Russia, to Berlin, saying: "I need by next available air courier 10 Finnish military pistols with two drum magazines, each execution of Sonderaktionen". He requests a radio telegram reply. What inference do you draw from that? A. I do not know whether the term Sonderaktionen refers here to shootings, and I do not know whether these Finnish pistols were used. Q. Is it a reasonable inference if I say that this is probably a reference to the machine gunning of Jews into pits? A. I do not know. It says militairpistol. This is not a machine gun or short machine gun. Q. Execution of Sonderaktionen? A. I am not sure. I think it is reasonable to argue this line, but I do not know whether ever Finnish military pistols were used. They had their own weapons. I do not see a reason why they urgently needed for these executions Finnish weapons. It does not make sense for me. It might be right, but I do not know the background. Q. Might not there be reasons of camouflage? They wanted, if bodies were dug out, to have Finnish bullets found in the bodies rather than German bullets? This kind of thing might have been in it. A. We have enough expertise information that they use normally the standard Army pistol. . P-137 Q. Tommy gun? A. The 9 millimetre pistol for these operations. Actually I have not found something like that. Q. Dr Longerich, the ones I really rely on are page 143, two messages that afternoon, or evening rather, 7.30 p.m., both at the same time. One from Himmler's adjutant, Grotmann, and one from Himmler himself, to Jeckeln. Jeckeln was the chief villain, was he not? He was one of the biggest murderers in Riga. A. Yes he was the highest SS police leader. Q. The chief SS police leader. The first one summons him to a conference with Himmler on 4th December? A. Yes. Q. The second one, even more peremptorily, from Himmler himself says to him, "The Jews being outplaced to the Ostland are to be dealt with only in accordance with the guidelines laid down by myself and/or by the Reichssicherheitshauptamt on my orders. I would punish arbitrary and disobedient acts". A. Yes. Q. That looks like quite an important telegram or message? A. I think you will relate this to the telephone call of 13th November, and I think you are right to do so.
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