The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression
Individual Responsibility Of Defendants
Ernst Kaltenbrunner
(Part 4 of 4)


[Page 582]

(4) Kaltenbrunner had knowledge of the commitment of thousands of Warsaw Poles to concentration camps and refused to release them. During the suppression of the Warsaw uprising of 1944, about 50,000 to 60,000 inhabitants of Warsaw were sent to concentration camps. As a result of entreaties by Hans Frank to Himmler the deportation was stopped. Frank and Buehler, his State Secretary, requested Kaltenbrunner to release the persons who had been committed. Kaltenbrunner refused to release them on the grounds they were employed in making secret weapons for the Reich and declared that the number transported into concentration camps in the Reich was small. Buehler verified the fact that the number of persons so placed in concentration camps for forced labor was 50,000 to 69,999 (2476-PS) .

(5) Kaltenbrunner controlled the deportation of Poles, Jews, and other non-Germans from Poland. Otto Hofmann, former Chief of the SS Main Office for Race and Settlement Matters, stated:

"The execution of all so-called resettlement actions, that is, the sending away of Polish, Jewish, and people of non-German blood, inhabitants of a territory in Poland destined for Germanization was in the hands of the Chief of the RSHA, Heydrich, and, since the end of 1942, Kaltenbrunner." (L-49)

(6) Kaltenbrunner ordered the deportation of Jews from Der mark. In, September 1943 Himmler ordered the Danish Jews arrested and shipped to Stettin and from there to Theresienstadt concentration camp. Mildner, the Chief of the Sipo and SD, telegraphed the RSHA to request that the Jewish persecutions be

[Page 583]

stopped. In reply he received an order from Himmler through Kaltenbrunner to carry out the anti-Jewish action. Shortly thereafter Mildner flew to Berlin to speak to Kaltenbrunner personally about the matter. In Kaltenbrunner's absence he spoke to Mueller. After his return to Copenhagen, Mildner received a direct order from Himmler through Kaltenbrunner to carry out the anti-Jewish actions immediately (2375-PS).

(7) Kaltenbrunner personally exercised punitive authority over foreign workers. By order of Kaltenbrunner Labor Reformatory Camps were established under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Security Police (106-B-PS).

In addition to sending workers to Labor Reformatory Camps, Kaltenbrunner, through orders for protective custody signed by him or by facsimile of his signature, committed workers to concentration camps. On 9 February 1945 a French citizen was sent to Buchenwald by order of Kaltenbrunner for shirking work and insubordinate behavior. On 18 June 1943 a Pole was sent to Natzweiler "to be used as a skilled worker" by order of Kaltenbrunner. On 2 December 1944 a citizen of the Netherlands was taken into protective custody "for work sabotage" by order of Kaltenbrunner. On 2 December 1944 a French citizen was taken into protective custody for "work sabotage and insubmissive" (2582-PS; 2580-PS).

(8) Kaltenbrunner personally attended to matters against Jews and political and concentration camp internees in the Protectorate. A memorandum found among Kaltenbrunner's personal effects states in

"Radio message to Gruppenfuehrer Fegelein Hq. of the Fuehrer through Sturmbannfuehrer Sansoni, Berlin.

"Please report to RF SS and to the Fuehrer that all arrangements against Jews, political and concentration camp internees in the Protectorate have been taken care of by me personally today"

(9) Kaltenbrunner personally ordered the Sipo and SD to encourage the populace to lynch American and English flyers. In 1944 at a conference of Amt Chiefs Kaltenbrunner said:

"All offices of the SD and the security police are to be informed that pogroms of the populace against English and American terror-fliers were not to be interfered with; on the contrary, this hostile mood is to be fostered" (2990-PS).

[Page 584]

(10) Kaltenbrunner personally worked out the form of justification to be submitted to cover up the execution of prisoners of war. In connection with the shooting of some 50 recaptured prisoners of war who had escaped from a prisoner of war camp near Breslau, Kaltenbrunner worked out with Mueller and Nebe the false reasons which were to be given to the Red Gross, that is, that they had been killed by bomb attacks, or shot while escaping or resisting arrest (2990- PS).

D. CONCLUSION.

Kaltenbrunner was a life-long fanatical Nazi. He was the leader of the SS in Austria prior to the Anschluss and played a leading role in the betrayal of his native country to the Nazi conspirators. As Higher SS and Police Leader in Austria after the Anschluss he supervised and had knowledge of the activities of the Gestapo and the SD in Austria. He had much to do with developing Mauthausen concentration camp and visited it frequently. On at least one occasion he observed the gas chamber in action. With this knowledge and background he accepted in January 1943 appointment as chief of the very agencies which sent such victims to their deaths. He held that office to the end, rising to high prominence in the conspiracy, receiving honors from Hitler and gaining Hitler's personal confidence.


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