The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 87
(Part 1 of 6)

Session No. 87

22 Tammuz 5721 (6 July 1961)

Presiding Judge: I declare the eighty-seventh Session of the trial open. The Accused will continue with his testimony in direct examination. I remind the Accused that he is still testifying under oath.

Accused: I am aware of the fact.

Presiding Judge: Please proceed, Dr. Servatius.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, I should first like to submit the document referred to in Becher's statement, number 47.

Presiding Judge: This should really relate to the Becher statement - I shall therefore mark this exhibit VI A.

Dr. Servatius: I have concluded my presentation of the documents for Hungary, but have not yet mentioned the two incidents testified to by witnesses, namely, Kistarcsa and Gordon.

Presiding Judge: Yes.

Dr. Servatius: I should like to ask the Accused a few questions about these incidents.

Witness, you have heard in this Court an account from Witness Freudiger, inter alia, of a transport which left Kistarcsa, was ordered to return by Horthy, and then again set in motion. The Jews of the Council of Jewish Elders were said to have been summoned to your office, where they were detained with all sorts of minor matters and, it is said, this was all simply to avoid any intervention, so that when the Jews were allowed to go home in the evening, the transport was already again on its way.

Question: What do you know about these transports - the first and the second transport?

Accused: I have been trying to picture to myself the whole affair as it was at the time. The result is as follows: I seem to have a very vague recollection of some transport or other which returned. I have not been able to shed any further light on the matter. I have also tried to go into the second matter, and to do this I have read through all the literature made available to me and - if I cast my mind back to that time - I noticed something here: that is, that they were removed from the camp in lorries.

Now, I know that I had no lorries at all, and that in addition, in August or September - in any case, when I had to leave for the Romanian border - I had the greatest difficulties in rounding up just two or three lorries for transport required for my duties.

I have also heard Freudiger's testimony to this Court, and I asked myself who was in charge of this Kistarcsa camp. It certainly was not under my command, but since it was situated on the outskirts of the city of Budapest, I believe that it must have been under the command of the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service, as a sort of internal prison (Hausgefaengnis), as we called it. I could well imagine that to be the case. I could also imagine that, since the head of the camp - as Witness Freudiger has said - was a Hungarian officer, there must have been some link here with the Hungarian gendarmerie, since at that time the Hungarian gendarmerie had sufficient numbers of lorries.

I also heard that this transport - or read that this transport - was brought back on Horthy's orders. Since I did not myself take decisions even in minor matters, I certainly would have taken care not to issue orders and have them carried out on my own initiative contrary to such an order, since it was very easy for me - I had the Higher SS and Police Leader, and if necessary I could have turned to Veesenmayer and asked him for further orders. And, as a third possibility, there was also the Senior Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service. But that would mean that I would not have needed - as is alleged here - to detain the Council of Elders for eight hours, in order to camouflage the implementation of this affair. Because then I would have had an official order, for which the others would have been responsible. But in any case I do not know anything about such a matter.

In conclusion, I should like to say that in any case I cannot have been involved in this affair, as the technical resources for it were not available to me.

Dr. Servatius: I now come to the Gordon affair. Witness, you have heard in this Court the witness Gordon, who has testified in detail to the Court as to the maltreatment of a young Hungarian Jew, which took place in the garden of the house in which you are said to have lived at that time. Would you give your reaction to this testimony of the witness, and indicate whether you were involved in this matter, the maltreatment or killing of this Jew?

Accused: On this question I can only say that I have never killed a human being, I have never slain a human being, and I have never struck a human being. I can also say in the same breath that in that house in which I lived in Budapest, Sergeant Slawik, whose name has already been mentioned, could not have done this either, because this man Slawik was with me almost continuously from 1938 onwards, I believe, and Slawik would never have dared to do such a thing. I can only say that I really wonder where the witness may have obtained his knowledge. It is a mystery to me. I did not do anything of this kind, and I must deny this matter absolutely.

Dr. Servatius: Witness, are you implying that Witness Gordon has deliberately given false testimony on oath to this Court?

Accused: No, I would not dare to allege such a thing, but I have wondered where this witness can have obtained his information, because the whole thing is untrue and quite impossible. He must be confusing things somehow, because if the witness claims to have seen it, then - well, if I am already airing this incident, I might as well say that I am moreover extremely surprised that others did not see it, since a fair number of people were frequenting my house. In addition, at that time there were quite a few people who came to see me socially. I am sure that such an incident would have been talked about and would not have come up only now, in the year 1961.

Dr. Servatius: I now come to a few - four - documents with reference to the Slovenes. The matter in question is the transfer of these Slovenes to Serbia. The first communication is T/898, document No. 423. This is an invitation or a summons by Heydrich to the Reich Minister of Finance to attend a discussion of such resettlement matters in Maribor.

Paragraph 1 reads:

"In accordance with the Fuehrer's order, a start should be made at once to clear up ethnic questions in the areas in the south-east which have recently joined the Reich. This basically involves evacuating Slovenes from these areas to Serbia. Provisional indications show some 260,000 Slovenes to be involved."
What we have here is only the invitation to the Reich Minister of Finance, but obviously all the relevant departments were invited to Maribor at that time.

The next exhibit is T/899, document No. 1080. This is a communication from IVB4, Eichmann, to the Representative of the Chief of the Security Police and the Security Service at the Civil Administration in Lower Styria. It reads: "Re: Your teletype communication of 24 April 1941 to the Head Office for Reich Security, attention of SS Obersturmbannfuehrer Dr. Ehlich." Dr. Ehlich is the Chief of Department III of the Head Office for Reich Security, Race and Nationality, and is therefore responsible for resettlement. In the last sentence of the communication it says: "For the post of Camp Commander of the camp which is to be set up at Rahn, a suitable official is to be detailed from the Graz Gestapo office who is to be assigned to Department III of the Resettlement Staff." Signed: Eichmann.

The next exhibit is T/901, document No. 1093. This is a teletype communication from the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service in Lower Styria - Resettlement Staff to Eichmann. It reads: "As has already been indicated by telephone, with immediate effect, evacuees are to be searched under the supervision of customs officials."

The last exhibit is T/900, document No. 1079. On 12 September 1941, the same Resettlement Staff notifies Eichmann of the departure of a transport train.

Witness, to what extent did you deal with this resettlement?

Accused: Acting on orders, I had to dispatch the letters of invitation to the central authorities, that is to draw them up and dispatch them, in accordance with instructions from Mueller or Heydrich, I forget which. But in any case there was no by-passing Mueller. And the aim of the conference was to bring the central authorities together at the compulsory transfer site, as ordered by Hitler. And here Heydrich had advised and instructed the central authorities that they, in turn, were to bring together their relevant specialist officers at this resettlement site, in order to be able to control the entire resettlement operation on a local basis.

This is what happened. Central control was in the hands of SS Standartenfuehrer, or Obersturmbannfuehrer at the time, Dr. Ehlich, the group leader of Department III. They handled Race, Nationality and Resettlement. This is shown by the organization chart.

And I have found in two documents a reference to something I announced at the time, that an official or a civil servant was to be appointed to be in charge of the camp. And also that searches were to be carried out by customs officials. This resulted from the fact that at that time Mueller instructed me, because of the centralized arrangements of Department III - which consisted of members of the Security Service exclusively - to pass down this requirement, because it was Mueller's position that "this is not a duty of the Security Service but of the Security Police, or of the competent officials of the appropriate central authorities."

Today, I forget whether the timetable was drawn up locally or by the Reich Transport Ministry. I would tend to assume that in this instance it was drawn up locally. Other than that, I was only used as - I think I would call it the central office for passing on information. This can be seen from the number of documents all included in No. 1079, recording the departure times of the trains and asking for Belgrade to be informed, because the local Resettlement Office was unable to contact Belgrade directly.

In conclusion, I should like to say that there is another communication included in Prosecution document No. 1079. I noted T/900 - I am not sure whether that is correct. I was struck by the fact that in the last paragraph but one it reads: "Hoeppner is en route for the destination, and together with Krumey is seconded to Serbia." And then it says: "Last paragraph in accordance with instructions from SS Sturmbannfuehrer Eichmann." That cannot be correct, since first of all I was unable to pursue any personnel policy, and secondly that is shown by the fact that the teletype communication went to the Head Office for Reich Security, for my attention or for my deputy; in other words, if I had gone down there and given those orders, there would have been no need for me to be informed of that back in Berlin.

In my opinion, this is definitely a slip of the pen. It should read here Dr. Lurger, who was the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service in Lower Styria, and Head of the Resettlement Staff.

Presiding Judge: Let me try and understand your answer about this matter: How did this involve your Section, IVB4? At that time, did the general authority of Section IVB4 include resettlement?

Accused: Your Honour, according to the organization chart, at that time I was dealing with Evacuation and Resettlement, and it was not until the second organization chart, in March 1941, I believe, that there were additions to evacuation and resettlement; but unfortunately I have...I think...just on the basis of the organization chart... but in any case I had Evacuation and Resettlement.

Presiding Judge: So that means that at that time Resettlement and Evacuation were still within the authority of your Department?

Accused: Yes, as far as the duties of Department IV were concerned.

Presiding Judge: And that is how this matter reached you, through Heydrich or through Mueller, as you have explained.

Accused: That is correct, Your Honour.

Dr. Servatius: I come now to the chapter on concentration camps, file 39. The first exhibit is T/1375, document No. 11. The document was already referred to under sterilization. The first paragraph is of interest now. This is a letter from SS Oberfuehrer Viktor Brack to Himmler, dated 23 June 1942. In the first paragraph Brack writes:

"On instructions from Reichsleiter Bouhler, I have already long ago made available part of my staff to Brigadefuehrer Globocnik, in order to implement his special assignment. Following a further request from him, I have now assigned more of my men to him. In this connection, Brigadefuehrer Globocnik argued that the entire Jewish operation should be carried out as speedily as possible, in order to avoid being interrupted in the middle, one day, if difficulties were to arise which would require the operation to be halted. You yourself, Reichsfuehrer, had already expressed your opinion that, if only for reasons of camouflage, the work should be carried out as quickly as possible."
He is talking about making his men available. In explanation I would point out in advance which people are involved. They are referred to later in the documents. Reichsleiter Bouhler is the person who performed euthanasia, initially on the mentally ill, and in a later operation also on others known as "useless consumers." Dr. Pfannenstiel's name is mentioned, and then a Regierungsrat or Oberregierungsrat Lindner of the Reich Ministry of the Interior, who deals with the bureaucratic aspects, and several others. There is also a reference to a Dr. Blankenburg, a physician, and in this connection the name Guenther is also mentioned.

I proceed to the next exhibit; this is one of the pieces of testimony by Judge - SS Judge - Dr. Morgen, dated 7 August 1946. This is his testimony to the International Military Tribunal.

Presiding Judge: What is the number of the exhibit, Dr. Servatius?

Dr. Servatius: Document No. 49. I submit the exhibit as evidence. It contains the testimony and reports on what he investigated in the concentration camps, with Wirth and Hoess.

Presiding Judge: What became of Morgen, Dr. Servatius, is he still alive?

Dr. Servatius: I cannot say; I can only assume so, as he was not particularly old, and, according to the documents available, he would seem to have behaved properly.

Presiding Judge: Mr. Hausner, what is your opinion?

Attorney General: I regret that Dr. Servatius did not inform us accordingly by the time fixed by the Court for submission of statements, as I would have been glad to examine Dr. Morgen, at least in Germany. However, I shall not at this stage oppose submission of this document.

Presiding Judge:

Decision No. 90

We allow submission of Dr. Morgen's testimony as an exhibit in these proceedings. The Attorney General has no objections. I mark this N/94.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, since the witness made several statements, might I point out that this is the hearing on 7 August 1946.

Presiding Judge: On which page in the transcript before us, Dr. Servatius?

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