The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 77
(Part 5 of 5)

Judge Halevi: Are you not mistaken about the year? Was it not a year later?

Accused: Yes. In the year 1943, we also had an increase in the deportations, and it is this second increase which I confused just now with this first one. Strictly speaking, we had three peaks. First, this one here in the late spring of 1942, the second one after Heydrich's death, and the third after Stalingrad. That is how I confused the third peak with this one.

Judge Raveh: If that is so, you have not yet replied to Defence Counsel's question.

Accused: Excuse me, may I request that the question be put again?

Dr. Servatius: The question was whether you yourself or your office ordered these evacuations; whether you did so - because your file number appears on this communication - or whether you caused Mueller to do so, so that you were the mainspring of the whole affair.

Accused: No. I was neither the mainspring, nor did I cause it. Moreover, it completely contradicts the nature of my chief at that time, and I should like here to refer to his deputy at that time or later, the Deputy Chief of Department Huppenkothen, who shared my opinion and that of all the rest of us, namely that Mueller personally intervened even in matters of minor importance and gave orders himself, and did not suffer independent action.

Dr. Servatius: I am passing over two exhibits that were on my list and come to exhibit T/718, document No. 1285. This is a communication to the State Police dated 24 November 1941 with an enclosure, a supplement to the evacuation list of 19 November 1941. It concerns legal representatives for Jewish minors. The court dealing with matters of guardianship had to appoint these legal representatives. Witness, did it ever come to your knowledge that a judge dealing with matters relating to minors ever refused to make this appointment as being unlawful?

Accused: No.

Judge Halevi: Dr. Servatius, I do not know whether a legal representative was always appointed, or whether he was appointed by a judge. Was not the father the legal representative? For example here, the first name is Adler, Sarah, the legal representative is also called Adler. Was not the father of the minor the legal representative?

Dr. Servatius: It is possible that some of the parents went along with them and are listed here, but a legal representative is, after all, only necessary if the real representative is no longer available, or if there is a separation. I assume that it was done here for serving writs for sequestering the property of these minors. That is the impression which I got from the communication. A closer look at the names, which I had not managed before, shows me that, after all, it was mainly the parents who are the legal representatives listed here. The reason for it is not quite clear to me.

Your Honour, the Presiding Judge, I should now like to deal with the Duesseldorf Files, those four volumes. I have not got them in front of me, but I prepared some notes from them, so that the Court can turn to the relevant pages from the files, as required. To begin with, on page 23, there are numbers, each of which is framed in red. To begin with, I call attention to page 24, which refers to the decision of the Reich Minister of the Interior, concerning the collective declaration that the property of Jews to be deported is property of enemies of the nation and the state. Decision of 2 March 1942, Section IIA5.

Presiding Judge: We have this as T/1395.

Dr. Servatius: Those are the numbers T/1395-1398. On page 37 is the District Governor's (Regierungspraesident) decree of sequestration, and on page 53 the difficulty as to the serving of the decree is cleared up, namely the President of the District Court approves serving by his bailiffs, that is, delivery of the writ of sequestration of property.

Judge Raveh: As far as I remember, he merely sends the bailiff.

Dr. Servatius: He has to grant permission to the bailiff to act in such a matter at all, and this he gives. On page 97, the general declaration which was mentioned just now, concerning the assets of enemies of the nation and the state, appears once more. Then, on page 187, the Probate Court in Duesseldorf enquires about curatorship of the estates, or administration of the estates of Jews who committed suicide prior to evacuation.

Presiding Judge: We have this as being from exhibit T/1397.

Dr. Servatius: The Court is referred to the general declaration of the Minister of the Interior, as has already been mentioned. Page 242 is a communication by Kaltenbrunner dated 21 May 1943, setting the deadline of 30 June 1943, by which date the Reich is to be clean of Jews.

Presiding Judge: That is from T/1398.

Dr. Servatius: Finally, on page 276 is a communication from the Head Office for Reich Security of 5 November 1942. It is from the Reich Leader (Reichsfuehrer), File No. IVC2, and says: "No further admission of Jews to Auschwitz, Ghetto Lublin"; the actual wording is: "from now on out of question." Signed: Mueller. It is an order of the Reich Leader of the SS.

In this context, I would still like to deal with document 3, which is T/37(134), and which, I think, we do not have before us now. I only found it very late. However, it is quite short. This is a communication from Himmler to the Head of the Security Police and Security Service. It has three short paragraphs. I shall read them out. The date is 9 April 1943. "I am in receipt of the statistical report by the Inspector for Statistics concerning the Final Solution of the Jewish Question." I am skipping the next paragraph; it goes on to say in the last paragraph: "What is most important to me, as it always has been, is that as many Jews as only humanly possible be now sent to the East."

Witness, would you state your position as to what influence this had on your activity?

Attorney General: Merely, for the sake of good order, I think that Counsel for the Defence ought to submit this document, because this part of it is not yet an exhibit in the Court. I have no objections to the submission of this document, but it has not yet been submitted.

Presiding Judge: That is correct, Dr. Servatius. This is how we acted towards the Prosecution, and that is how we shall act also towards the Defence.

Dr. Servatius: I assumed that it had been submitted, because it has a T number.

Presiding Judge: No, this was apparently one of the exhibits shown to the Accused during his examination in Bureau 06. What we always did when the Prosecution wished to submit such a document as an exhibit was to have it submitted separately, the document being given a separate exhibit number. That is how we did it right from the beginning, so that if you, on your part, now wish to submit it as your exhibit, you are free to do so.

Dr. Servatius: I herewith request to admit this document 3 from Bureau 06 as an exhibit. I shall later hand in a proper copy of it, without the handwritten notes.

Presiding Judge: That will be N/12.

Dr. Servatius has put a question to the Accused in connection with this document, to which we have not yet received an answer.

Dr. Servatius: Yes.

Accused: May I reply?

Presiding Judge: Yes.

Accused: On the basis of this command by Himmler to send to the East what is humanly possible, Section IVB4 was ordered through the official channel, via Kaltenbrunner and Mueller, to prepare the appropriate basic decree for all State Police District Headquarters and local stations, etc., with the usual key words, as reflected in the telegram in the Duesseldorf Files on page 242, if I am not mistaken, namely Kaltenbrunner's telegram of 21 May 1943, in which he sets 30 June 1943 as the deadline.

Judge Raveh: Who supplied the material for this statistical report?

Accused: As a rule, the local State Police and District State Police headquarters. I think that, on their part, these offices procured the material from the heads of the local administration, from the offices of the Party leadership; in Austria, conceivably the Central Office for Emigration of Jews was also involved. Anyway in this manner the whole of the material was put together.

Judge Raveh: Was not this a report which a statistician drew up on the basis of material he had received from your office?

Accused: As far as I know, at the time when Himmler gave the order to send what is humanly possible, the statistical report had long since been handed in.

Judge Raveh: Do you mean to say that this does not refer to the report which was drawn up by the statistician on the basis of the material he got in your office?

Accused: When, in 1943, in April I think, the various State Police branches asked for numerical data, as a result of this command by Himmler and Kaltenbrunner, then these data were for one purpose only, namely to serve as guidelines for drawing up a transportation timetable.

Dr. Servatius: Witness, I would ask you to read this report yourself. Have you got it before you?

Accused: I have not got it here.

Dr. Servatius: You can see from the report that this is not a matter of a temporary assembly of details for transports, but of something quite different.

Accused: In document No. 3, Himmler acknowledges receipt of the statistical report. After he had read it, he commanded the Chief of the Security Police and the Security Services henceforth to send to the East what is humanly possible. That was on 9 April 1943. Thereupon...

Dr. Servatius: Witness, the aim of the Judge's question was: From where did the statistician get his material? Whether you gave him the material for his scrutiny, for preparing the statistics as regards the state of the Final Solution. This word actually appears in paragraph 2.

Accused: I had not understood this correctly. I assumed that it concerned the telegram which Kaltenbrunner had signed. The material used in the preparation of the Kurherr Report was supplied by many different departments. First, from my Section, secondly, from the Head Office for Economic Administration, from the Department of Statistics of the Reich Ministry of the Interior, also from the Jewish organizations themselves. From Section IVB4, from my Section, he could only obtain the numbers of those who had been evacuated.

However, the Section itself had first to obtain the number of Jews still residing within the area of the Reich from the different offices. As regards the number of Jewish inmates in the concentration camps, including those deported, the Head Office had to supply this information; my Section was not able to provide any information on this. Likewise, my Section was unable to supply statistical information on the subject of the Generalgouvernement; instead, instructions had earlier been given to obtain these data from the authorities of the Generalgouvernement.

During this period, when Kurherr was engaged in drawing up the report, he sent innumerable telegrams to all kinds of authorities in the Reich, to the Generalgouvernement, and the Protectorates of Bohemia and Moravia.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/1408, document No. 1462. This is a telegram signed by the Accused and addressed to various offices. It deals with the departure of evacuation trains. One sentence in this communication requires clarification: "Notification is to be given, by telephone or by telegram, in the prescribed wording."

Would you give an explanation what that is supposed to mean?

Accused: Yes. This regulation was intended first and foremost to do away with so-called "wild" evacuations which the local offices liked to carry out occasionally. They compelled the State Police offices and the agencies charged with the evacuation to act exactly according to the instructions of the Head Office for Reich Security, according to those same instructions issued by the Chief of the Head Office for Reich Security, and the Chief of Department IV. In practice, minor infringements obviously occurred also after this, conditioned by the special position of the Gauleiter who wielded sovereign power.

Presiding Judge: I cannot see this as a reply here to the question of the Counsel for the Defence. The question was, what is the meaning of the words "in the prescribed wording," not the existence of instructions for implementation, but the existence of a prescribed wording for the report. At least, that is how I understand these words.

Accused: Yes, that is also how I meant it, Your Honour, the Presiding Judge. By means of this prescribed wording, the subordinate department was compelled to make a precise and a prescribed report. It was thus impossible, or hardly possible, to cover up any partial operations by local holders of powers without the knowledge of the Head Office for Reich Security.

Presiding Judge: Now I understand the answer.

Dr. Servatius: I am passing over several exhibits on my list and come to exhibit T/384, document No. 1395. This is a telegram from Mueller to various offices; it says: "I therefore request you to carry out no more transports of evacuation as from the date mentioned, namely 16 March 1941." It is signed by Mueller.

Witness, did Mueller here interfere in arrangements you had made, maybe exaggerated evacuations?

Accused: Not only was there no interference in arrangements that I had made - I could make no arrangements. This telegram clearly proves that. I could neither order nor halt deportations. This order to stop had likewise to be signed by Mueller.

Dr. Servatius: Witness, how then do you explain the existence of this communication?

Accused: Looking at the date, the matter is fairly clear to me, because that is the period of the large troop movements to the East which obviously made excessive demands on the rolling stock of the Reich Railways, and that is why the evacuation was being stopped.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/711, document No. 1602. This is a communication from the Reich Minister of Justice, dated 17 April 1941, signed by Dr. Schlegelberger as the competent official. The communication is addressed to the Head of the Reich Chancellery and to the Reich Minister, Minister for Cultural Matters, Lammers. It concerns the criminal law against Jews in the incorporated Eastern Territories.

Was your Section involved in drafting this special criminal law for Jews in the East?

Accused: No, I know nothing about this.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/197, document 501. This is a report by Reich Minister of Justice Thierack, dated eptember 1942, about a consultation with Himmler and other senior SS officers. On page 2, it says that annihilation through labour is to be brought about - by the Reichsfuehrer-SS - without exception. Jews, Gypsies, etc. in preventive detention are to be handed over.

Witness, were you and your office involved in these measures?

Accused: No, I had nothing to do with delivering to the Reichsfue-SS those intended for annihilation by labour, thus excluding them from ordinary penal measures. Also, I think I am certain that at that time I had not even read this formulation, but only subsequently. Thinking it over, it could not have been otherwise than that the local offices of the Reich Minister of Justice contacted the Inspectorate of the Concentration Camp Authorities directly. I cannot really imagine any other way. To sum up, I am not aware that somehow in these sixteen hundred documents I came across anything of this nature, according to which my Section dealt with such matters.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, the Presiding Judge, I now come to a different chapter, the Operations Units.

Presiding Judge: I think there is still exhibit T/196 - does that still belong to the preceding subject?

Dr. Servatius: I was not going to deal with this document any more, because it is superfluous.

Presiding Judge: If that is so, we can now adjourn. The next Session will be held tomorrow at 8.30.

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