The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 84
(Part 5 of 6)

Accused: However, since on page 2, the last paragraph, in exhibit N/65, on 25 September 1940 - that is at a time when I believe Wisliceny was not yet in Slovakia - Killinger makes a reference to this question of total Jewish assets, I would tend to assume that Wisliceny received the relevant instructions from his head of mission.

Dr. Servatius: Next exhibit, T/1078, document No. 837. This is a communication from the Foreign Ministry - Luther - to the German legation in Pressburg, dated 16 February 1942. It deals with the evacuation of Jews. It reads: "As part of the measures for the Final Solution of the European Jewish Question, the German Government is prepared immediately to take over twenty thousand young, strong Slovak Jews and to transport them to the East, where there is need for labour." Below there is a handwritten note: "Telegram to Slovak Government: Proposal eagerly accepted. Preliminary work can be initiated."

Witness, can you say who made this comment? Do you recognize the handwriting?

Accused: No, I do not recognize it. I do not know.

Dr. Servatius: Next exhibit, T/1079, document No. 1270 - communication from Ambassador Garben, Foreign Ministry, to the legation in Pressburg. It contains information about visits - under point 2, about Eichmann's visit. It says there: "Eichmann, by order of the Chief of the Security Police and the Security Service, for preliminary discussions on the evacuation of twenty thousand Jews from Slovakia."

The next exhibit is T/1080, document No. 1271 - this is a communication from the Foreign Ministry - Luther - to the legation in Pressburg, dated 20 March 1942. It discusses the evacuation - the deportations - and then it says: "As part of this action it is intended that Slovakia should pay the Reich an amount of five hundred Marks for each Jew taken over." Signed, Luther.

The next exhibit is T/1081, document No. 1015. This is a minute by Luther of the Foreign Ministry, dated 29 March 1942. It reads:

"Ambassador Ludin called me from Pressburg, in order to inform me that a positive decision has been taken by the Slovak Council of State on the question of evacuating Jews from Slovakia."
It continues:
"In the first discussion there was opposition by one member of the Council of State, to which Bishop Waiczek replied with a very positive speech."
There would be exceptions for baptised Jews. Then it says:
"Envoy Ludin informed me that three evacuation trains with six hundred to one thousand Jews had already left. Others would follow without delay. As soon as the twenty thousand Jews initially demanded for labour purposes had been evacuated, a start could be made with evacuating the remaining seventy thousand Jews. The Pressburg legation will send a detailed written report." Signed, Luther.
Judge Halevi: I have a question to the Accused in respect of the last exhibits. In the telegram dated 13 March, it says that you are coming to Slovakia in order to hold preparatory talks about expelling twenty thousand Jews from Slovakia. On 29 March it says that the first three trains have already left with six hundred to one thousand Jews in each train.

If that is so, did you make these preparations during those days, from 13 March onwards? Were you in Slovakia, and did you prepare this evacuation or not?

Accused: I prepared the evacuation in Berlin. I was also in Slovakia. However, as to whether at the time referred to in the telegram of 13 March I was in Slovakia, I do not remember, because I heard that Heydrich himself went to Tuka and personally cleared up matters with Tuka. What I do remember very clearly is that on the day that Heydrich...that the attack on Heydrich took place, I was in Slovakia.

Judge Halevi: That was later. Thank you very much.

Dr. Servatius: Next exhibit - T/1085, document No. 838. This is a communication from Wisliceny to the German legation in Pressburg, Ministerialrat Dr. Grueninger, dated 28 April 1942, saying that an ordinance from the Central Office for the Economy has secured Jewish movable property. In the last sentence but one of the communication it says: "A legal ordinance currently being prepared provides for all Jewish property to be confiscated by the Slovak State."

Next exhibit - T/1086, document No. 835. This is a draft for a note verbale, and it reads: "The German legation," etc. advises that "the German Reich Government will in principle no longer transport back to Slovakia the Jews who have been transported, and those who are to be transported from Slovak territory to Reich territory." This note verbale is to be handed over to the Foreign Ministry of the Slovak Republic in Pressburg. I cannot make out the signature; it would appear to be "Ludin."

Next exhibit - T/1087, document No. 836. This is a communication from the Foreign Ministry, signed Luther, to the legation in Pressburg. It states as follows:

"Please inform Slovak Government of the following: The Reich Government agrees to guarantee that the Jews accepted as part of the dejudaization of Slovakia, will remain definitely in the Eastern territories and will not be offered any possibility of re-immigrating into Slovakia."
It then says:
"The Reich Government is prepared to accept another twenty thousand Jews capable of labour from Slovakia during May of this year, and to send them to the East. Details to be settled as previously."
Next exhibit - T/1089, document No. 839. This is from Department IVB4, signed Guenther, to the Foreign Ministry. This reports that twenty thousand have been deported and that the deportation of another twenty thousand has commenced. In the last paragraph it reads: "The rolling stock made available by the Slovak Government facilitates considerably the technical implementation of the evacuation."

Next exhibit - T/1101, document No. 369. This is a minute from Wisliceny about consultations on 30 June 1942. It reads: "Adviser on Jewish Questions Wisliceny stated" in his introductory report in the presence of Tuka and Ludin that "the action against Jews was in its closing phase. Fifty- two thousand Jews have been deported. Thirty-five thousand remain for the time being. These persons possess Letters of Protection which are now being checked." At the end of the minute it says: "Wisliceny is in favour of Moravek continuing with the work, because he is a worker of integrity who makes no compromises." It concludes: "Envoy Ludin recommends a one hundred per cent solution of the Jewish Question."

Next exhibit - T/1106, document No. 1016. This is a communication from Ambassador Ludin to the Foreign Ministry, dated 13 April 1943. It is about the pastoral letters of the Slovak bishops. At the bottom of page 3 it says:

"Recently, Premier Dr. Tuka told me that the Papal Nuncio, Monsignor Burzio, had come to see him in order to protest verbally, by order of the Holy See, against the continuation of Jewish deportations. However, he did not even accept the protest, going immediately into the purely political nature of the matter."
The last sentence of the communication reads:
"In principle, I obviously maintain my opinion that it is a matter of urgent necessity that the Jews be deported from Slovakia as quickly and completely as possible." Signed, Ludin.
The last page says: "Sent to Eichmann for his information and with request for his views." Witness, what were your views on this communication?

Accused: I am not able to reply to the question; eighteen years have gone by since then.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/1120, document No. 513. This is a communication from Veesenmayer in Budapest to the Foreign Ministry, dated 13 June 1944. It is about Slovak Jews in Hungary, and the efforts of these Slovaks to return home. At the end it says:

"I would suggest that influence be exerted on the Slovak Government to adopt a basically disinterested attitude to Slovak Jews in Hungary, which will make action at this end far easier and will also make things quite clear vis-a-vis the Hungarian Government."
Next exhibit - T/1121, document No. 902. Ambassador Ludin in Pressburg to the Foreign Ministry, dated 23 June 1944. It is about a consultation with Dr. Veesenmayer concerning the question of what is to happen to the Slovak Jews in Hungary. It says: "No objections to the consultation. He is awaiting a visit, until the Adviser on Jewish Affairs is present again on a permanent basis." Wisliceny's presence may therefore be dispensed with.

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, it does not say that; he is insisting on Wisliceny's presence. And he repeats that at the end.

Dr. Servatius: That is what I was trying to say; at that time Wisliceny was away, in Greece or somewhere, and here what it says is that if he does not return, things will not progress. He is indispensable.

Presiding Judge: Precisely.

Attorney General: He was in Budapest.

Dr. Servatius: Next exhibit - T/1122, document No. 903. Another communication from Ambassador Ludin in Pressburg to the Foreign Ministry, dated 11 August 1944. This is a summary of his review of the situation in Slovakia. At the bottom of page 6 it deals with carrying out the activities for which Wisliceny is required:

"His absence, resulting from his appointment to Greece and Hungary, has most definitely facilitated a more lax application of the regulations, and also" - it is difficult to make out the words here - "shows that it is vital to have the local participation of a well- versed specialist officer for the controls necessary, in view of local circumstances, and for continuing pressure in individual cases."
At the bottom of page 7, before the last paragraph, it says:
"This example should, however, make the point most forcibly that ongoing expert monitoring is necessary. I would therefore request that the appointment of the Adviser on Jewish Affairs, Hauptsturmbannfuehrer Wisliceny, to Hungary, be revoked, and that arrangements be made for his immediate return to Slovakia to continue with his activities here."
Exhibit T/1125, document No. 895.* {*Document 895 was marked T/1127}

Presiding Judge: Letter from Budapest, dated 2 August 1944?

Dr. Servatius: No, it is a communication from Ludin to the Foreign Ministry, dated 4 October 1944. Ludin writes on 4 October 1944, to the Foreign Ministry about discussions he has had with Tiso about solving the Jewish Question. At the end of the communication it says:

"I indicated to the Premier that in my opinion there must at all costs be a radical solution applied now to the Jewish Question, and if there were foreign protests, he should simply indicate that the Reich was demanding a radical solution from the Slovak State. In that case, we would be prepared to take responsibility for the measures against the Jews. Request approval of this manner of speech."
Next exhibit - T/1128, document No. 896. Memorandum by von Thadden for submission via the State Secretary to the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs. In his opinion, for propaganda purposes such assumption of responsibility is not particularly clever. The text continues:
"The insurrections in Slovakia, as was stressed also by the new Slovak envoy in Berlin, were marked by an exceptionally high participation on the part of Jews, including those with exemption permits. This fact should be used to urge the Slovaks to reply to any claims that the high level of participation by Jews in insurrections by the partisan movement, makes it absolutely essential to apply a radical solution to the Jewish Question, in the security interests of the Slovak state."
Next exhibit - T/1132, document No. 217. This is a communication from von Thadden of the Foreign Ministry to Eichmann. It is a proposal for setting up a refuge for children and old people, the sick, and at the bottom it indicates that it was rejected. Dunant - that is the Red Cross representative - was given to understand "by the German legation that, in view of the participation of Jews in the Slovak uprising, there was no possibility of complying with his wish, since any refuge would immediately become a new centre for Jewish resistance. Dunant nevertheless requested that his wish be transmitted to the competent Reich authorities."

I submit as evidence document No. 515, not yet submitted. This is a first declaration by Ambassador Ludin, dated 12 June 1947, Bratislava - obviously in prison.

Presiding Judge: What happened to Ludin?

Dr. Servatius: I do not know what happened to him.

Presiding Judge: Do you know?

Attorney General: No, Sir.

Dr. Servatius: Perhaps I could at the same time submit the next document; it is another declaration by Ludin - No.514.

Presiding Judge: Mr. Hausner, does the Prosecution have any objections to the submission of these exhibits?

Attorney General: No, Your Honour. I gather that Ludin was executed; so, since he is no longer alive, I have no objections to his two declarations being submitted.

Presiding Judge:

Decision No. 87

We authorize the submission of the two declarations by Ludin as evidence. The Attorney General has no objections. We shall mark them N/66 (Prosecution No. 515), and N/67 (Prosecution No. 514).

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