The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 50
(Part 2 of 7)

State Attorney Bach: The Accused was asked about these two documents, and his reaction to them is to be found on pages 3018, 3019, 3020 and 3021. The two documents were in fact read out to him, as was the phone conversation with him, and then he says: "First I have to say that I do not remember anything about this, about the whole affair; secondly - and this is quite clear - the subject was dealt with by my Section in some way, there is a reference to a consultation with me - I can imagine that there was some involvement on the technical level, regarding transportation."

Further on he says: "I do not know what orders were issued on this subject." On page 3020 Inspector Less asks: "Why was it you who was addressed in writing about the fate of these 88 children?" To which Eichmann replies: "Yes, they must have been included in all these matters concerned with transportation; they may have been attached to a transport on a train, a train with a transport of Jews," etc. He claims that he does not remember the matter.

I now come to the central document in this affair, the importance of which actually even goes far beyond the affair of these children. This is our No. 868, which was presented to the Accused and was marked T/37(247). This is a letter from Krumey to the Head Office for Reich Security, Section IIIB4; this is the Rasseamt (Race Bureau) in the Head Office for Reich Security, Rasse- und Volksgesundheit 93(Racial and National Health), Einwanderung und Umsiedlung (Immigration and Resettlement); it is that Section.

Presiding Judge: Was "Umsiedlung" at one time IVB4?

State Attorney Bach: It used to be called Raeumungsangelegenheiten (matters of evacuation); here it is called Einwanderung und Umsiedlung.

Judge Halevi: "Rasseamt," that is a mistake.

State Attorney Bach: "Rasse- und Volksgesundheit" is IIIB3; IIIB4 is "Einwanderung und Umsiedlung."

In this letter Krumey reports that by the well-known operation, 88 orphaned Czech children (elternlos gewordene tschechische Kinder) from Lidice arrived in Lodz. Then he tells how they got there and asks for instructions. This is followed by the decisive sentence, in which he justifies and explains why he approached IVB4 on this matter: "Ich habe IVB4 von der Ueberstellung dieser Kinder in Kenntnis gesetzt, in der Annahme dass dieselben fuer eine Sonderbehandlung vorgesehen sind. In der Zwischenzeit hat RuS sieben rueckdeutschungsfaehige Kinder herausgenommen." (I approached and informed IVB4 on this matter, on the assumption that they are destined for special treatment. In the meantime RuS (Race and Settlement Office) has taken away seven children suitable for re-Germanization).

What this means is that when the subject is the killing of children - even non-Jewish children - that is the right address.

Presiding Judge: How does this really become a matter for IVB4, by the official organizational scheme?

State Attorney Bach: IVB4 was actually charged with Jewish affairs, but there was also the general subject of Raeumungsangelegenheiten (matters of evacuation). But the Rasseamt simply did not have a staff for murder operations. This also appeared in the trial of those persons; their job was to deal with the Rueckdeutschungsfaehige, the children who it was thought could be put through this process.

But when Krumey assumes that these children are destined for "special treatment" - Sonderbehandlung - he turns to IVB4, a Section with which he is familiar; and that is the address which has the solution for children who cannot be salvaged in any other way; they are destined for special treatment, and therefore the approach is to IVB4.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1094.

We are not going to argue about this, but are you telling us that in all of Bureau IV, or even in the whole Gestapo, there was no other apparatus able to carry out murder?

State Attorney Bach: At this stage it would perhaps be correct to say that Krumey did not know any other address. But perhaps there is also a difference between killing just a certain person who had been sentenced and the case of children. This is about a substantial number of children who, so Krumey apparently thought, were to be executed. They are in Poland, have by now reached Lodz. Krumey knows that there is one Section which deals with such drastic treatment, and that is IVB4, and that is why he approaches IVB4. We see that in fact it was IVB4 that he approached. I therefore think that we must conclude that, at least as far as Krumey subjectively is concerned, he at least did not know of any other Section.

Presiding Judge: Was Krumey in Lodz at the time?

State Attorney Bach: Yes, Krumey was then in Lodz, where he was in charge of the Resettlement Office, the Umwanderungsstelle at Litzmannstadt.

Our next document is No. 869. It was given to the Accused and marked T/37(246). It is not very legible, but it is quite clear that in it the Security Police and Security Service in Litzmannstadt reports the "Abgang in das Generalgouvernement" (Dispatch to the Generalgouvernement) of "Personen, 81 Tschechenkinder" (persons, 81 Czech children), in July 1942.

Presiding Judge: It says here, on top, in a typewritten note, that the photostatic copy is not legible. Do you have that photostatic copy?

State Attorney Bach: We got this from Yad Vashem. We apparently do not have the document with us at this moment. What is important in it is the statement that it contains: "Abgang in das Generalgouvernement - Personen, 81 Tschechen."

Presiding Judge: Try to find the photostatic copy.

State Attorney Bach: Yes, Sir.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1095.

State Attorney Bach: Our next document is No. 936. It informs Krumey, "Leiter der Umwandererzentralstelle" in Litzmannstadt, that on July 7 another twelve children who are "nicht wieder eindeutschungsfaehig" - incapable of being reabsorbed into the German race - will be arriving in Litzmannstadt, together with six children who are "wieder eindeutschungsfaehig" - i.e., can be reabsorbed into the German race. This document was given to the Accused, marked T/37(248).

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1096.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is No. 937, which was handed to the Accused, marked T/37(249). This is a letter to Krumey from the Reichsfuehrer-SS Race and Settlement Office; it deals with the same twelve children who are not reabsorbable into the German race and will be arriving in Litzmannstadt, as stated in the preceding document, a telegram dated July 4 1942. It also mentions the six children who can be reabsorbed into the German race. A list of the children's names is attached, of the six, and of the twelve "lost" children.

Presiding Judge: There are two places mentioned, Lidice and Lezaky; what is the second name?

State Attorney Bach: Lezaky is also a village, near Lidice. It appears that the children come from two villages.

Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/1097.

Judge Halevi: What is the meaning of the words - "zu weiterer Veranlassung ueberstellt" (transferred for further action)? This is unclear. It says that the twelve children are being sent to Krumey for further action; does Krumey have to understand what that means or will that be explained later?

State Attorney Bach: It will be explained later. I thank your Honour for pointing this out. The words that you quoted are preceded by "im Einvernehmen mit dem Reichssicherheitshauptamt," that is to say, that the children are being dispatched to Litzmannstadt in agreement with the Head Office for Reich Security. The document as such does not yet say what the plans are for these children. One can see that that office is not interested in the kind of treatment the children will be given.

Our next document is No. 938; it was presented to the Accused, marked T/37(25). This is a telegram from Krumey's office, signed by an SS Hauptsturmfuehrer, addressed to Section IVB4 of the Head Office for Reich Security, attention SS Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann. Subject: Czech children. "From the Race and Settlement Office in Prague we have received twelve children who are not reabsorbable into the German race, from the Lidice and Lezaky areas, in the 1- 15 years age group. Request further instructions."

Presiding Judge: Where does this come from? Where is this Hauptsturmfuehrer located?

State Attorney Bach: It follows from it that this also comes from Krumey's office.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1098.

State Attorney Bach: May I call the Court's attention to the following: I was asked by the Court about the photostatic copy that is attached to the document handed to the Accused. It is in the Court's file under number T/37(246); that is where the original is to be found, and that is why it was not attached to our file.

The reply to the previous letter which was sent to IVB4 is to be found in our No. 939, marked T/37(251). Actually it consists of two documents. The first is signed by Guenther and is addressed to Krumey's office in Litzmannstadt, asking for the children to be delivered to the Gestapo Post Litzmannstadt, which has already received further instructions.

The second document, attached to the same telegram, is an order according to the telegram of 14 July 1942, from the Head Office for Reich Security, stating that the twelve Czech children are to be handed over to the Gestapo Post Litzmannstadt for further custody. Then there is a confirmation that they have been actually received at the Gestapo Post Litzmannstadt. There is a signature by a Hauptscharfuehrer of the Stapostelle Litzmannstadt. We see therefore that these children were handed over to Gestapo Post Litzmannstadt on orders originating from IVB4.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1099.

State Attorney Bach: Concerning the 81 children, we do not have the specific order in our possession. However, on the basis of the documents we have already submitted and those still to come, we shall ask the Court to draw the conclusion that, in view of the fact that in both instances the approach was to IVB4, and we have IVB4's orders for twelve children - in both cases the orders were actually given by the same office.

Now I will bring two more pieces of evidence to the Court's attention. One is a booklet on the fate of these children, published by the Czechoslovak Government in 1945; it contains the children's names and their photographs. With regard to the fate of the children who had been found to be "wiedereindeutschungsfaehig," as the Germans put it - reabsorbable into the German race - who were taken to Germany, some of them were found there, alive, and their names are also cited in the booklet. As to the others - nothing more was heard of them, from the moment they were handed over to the Stapostelle, on IVB4 orders. I am submitting this as proof that these children have been missing ever since, and nothing about them has come to light.

In view of the fact that the booklet was published in 1945, we took steps to find out whether any trace of these children, all or some of them, has been discovered since 1945. Accordingly, the Charge d'Affaires of Israel in Prague at the time, Dr. Eliahu Livneh, applied to the Czech Government concerning this matter. Attached to that Czech report we are submitting a sworn statement by Dr. Livneh declaring that he made inquiries about the fate of the children with the Czech Foreign Ministry, and that Dr. Rudolf Kucoznik, Director of the Near East Section, officially informed him that not a single Lidice child had been discovered since the publication by the Czech Ministry of the Interior of the booklet on the Lidice children in 1945, and that not one Lidice child has since been found, except for those mentioned in the booklet itself.

The booklet was published in 1945, right after the War; attached thereto is the sworn statement by the Charge d'Affaires of Israel in Prague. I ask the Court to accept this Exhibit - our No. 1499 - as proof of that point only, namely that there is a confirmation by the Czech Government that all traces of these children have indeed been lost. I ask the Court to take that decision, in the wake of similar decisions it has taken with regard to reports emanating from Government commissions.

Presiding Judge: Was there a special inquiry in 1945?

State Attorney Bach: Yes, an inquiry was made to find out what happened to the children, and we have here the children's photographs and all their biographical data, and the statement that they disappeared from the moment they arrived at Lodz.

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, I have only the Hebrew translation and the Czech text of these documents, and I have yet to see a German translation. Therefore I cannot peruse them fully. To preserve my rights, after I have received them in translation, I may submit any objection which I may then have. Otherwise I have no formal objection at present.

Presiding Judge: Mr. Bach, perhaps you will first let Dr. Servatius have the translation, and we will decide on the acceptance at a later stage.

State Attorney Bach: Actually I gave Dr. Servatius a description of the contents of the document this morning; I thought we had provided him with a translation.

Presiding Judge: Never mind, you can finish that later, after Dr. Servatius has received the translation. We would not want to make a conditional decision, in case an objection is raised later and we have to give the document back to you.

State Attorney Bach: Certainly, Your Honour.

I also wish to draw the Court's attention to a passage in the Accused's statement, which he made when he had all the documents before him. On page 3035 we find:

"Eichmann: I would not say it was I...but the Section, that I see quite clearly.

Less: Yes, were you the Chief of the Section in 1942? Eichmann: Yes, I was Chief of the Section."

There is another passage later, on pp. 3134-3140, in which he reacts to this affair again. In general terms he repeats his argument that the whole thing had slipped his mind, but that it appears that his Section had indeed handled the subject, and that he apparently must have talked about it with Krumey; that is what he gathers from the documents. Now, as one last item of evidence on this subject, I wish to draw the Court's attention to evidence submitted in the trial of the senior officials of that Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt, the Main Office for Race and Settlement.

One of the Lidice children was a witness in that trial, one of those who had been classified as being "reabsorbable" into the German race. As a matter of fact, two of these children gave evidence in that trial. The charge against those officials was not the murder of the other children, they were not charged with that; the charge against them was abduction of the children and their removal to Germany, and they were found guilty on that charge only.

Presiding Judge: What was the number of that trial?

State Attorney Bach: That was trial No. 8, and the volume is No. 4.

A picture of the girl, Maria Dolacelova, appears on page 606 of Volume 4; the evidence given by that girl was not printed in that volume, but the evidence given by the other girl, Hanfova - another of those seven children - appears on page 1033.

Presiding Judge: So what is it that you wish to submit?

State Attorney Bach: The testimony of the Hanfova girl. I understand that Counsel for the Defence is even interested in having this material submitted to the Court. I talked to him before the Session opened this morning, and he said that he would like to see all the material relating to this subject submitted to the Court, in Volume 4 and also in Volume 5, which contains the Judgment given against these officials, so that it could be seen how much of the responsibility - or the responsibility altogether - lies with those officials.

In her testimony the Hanfova girl describes how she was taken away from Lidice, with the other children. She describes the process by which these seven children were separated from the other children; she tells what happened to them in Germany, and then she says that while she sometimes saw the other children who were in Germany with her, she never again saw any of the children from whom they had been separated and who had been taken to an unknown destination. So it seems to me that this testimony complements the evidence we have submitted, that it is relevant, and that it should be taken into account.

Presiding Judge: This is then the testimony that you want; why did you mention the picture of the other girl?

State Attorney Bach: Because she also testified in that trial; the picture is mentioned here, and it says that she had also testified.

Presiding Judge: Did she testify about the same things?

Judge Halevi: Where do we find the other testimony?

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