The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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


Accused: Having read in Reitlinger that between 10 and 22 August 1942, forty thousand Jews were dealt with in this way in Lemberg, and because I have also read that the first part of the Reinhardt Operation ended on 28 October 1942, I would conclude - and I believe that this is extremely accurate - that the visit I received instructions to make to Lublin, must have taken place at that time.

These are the four official journeys I was instructed to make, and during which I came into direct contact with the extermination of the Jews. I came into contact against my will - I had to obey, I had to do it. I cannot state anything further on this matter.

Dr. Servatius: Was there any written order indicating the destruction, and ordering it?

Accused: I never saw any written order.

Dr. Servatius: But, as far as I remember, in his testimony Wisliceny stated that you showed him such an order.

Accused: No, even Heydrich told me of it by word of mouth, and he gave his order orally. Neither in my files, nor in a safe - I myself did not even have a safe, but I believe that there was a safe in the anteroom - nor anywhere else in my office then was there any form of written order which made reference to this matter.

Dr. Servatius: You have said that you know nothing about Guenther's activities with regard to obtaining gas, and the journeys which he made apparently in that connection to Dr. Grawitz and those other euthanasia people - how could Guenther undertake such a thing without your being aware of it?

Accused: I have already said that this matter with Gerstein must also have been part of a special assignment from Mueller. Without my knowing about it...nothing would have stopped me from testifying to this fact, just as I have also testified about these four official journeys which I had to make on orders, without my being put under pressure in this connection. I must correct myself - the reference to "in this connection" does not refer...I did not choose my words properly, because the impression might arise that in other matters I had been put under pressure. I should like to correct what I said - in no instance was I put under pressure.

Dr. Servatius: Witness, the numbers of persons who perished there - can you give us some indication about this? First question: Did you on each occasion receive reports as to the people who were delivered, and were reports received by you as to who was exterminated?

Accused: At that time my Section had fairly accurate statistical documentation about the persons evacuated. However, my Section did not have a single document available about the things which subsequently happened in the concentration camps and elsewhere. And this was also the reason why, when the statistician Korherr appeared at my office and asked for documents, he had to get them from elsewhere, because I did not have them in my Section. Nor was I aware of any.

Dr. Servatius: On the basis of these reports as to the transports carried out, is it not possible to make an estimate of the numbers of persons who perished there?

Accused: I do not believe that it is possible to make an estimate here - in any case today I am totally unable to say anything which would be even half-way reliable - these are all figures which would simply be recited at random, without any sound basis. I am also not aware of how this statistical report must have been drawn up for Himmler, how Korherr obtained these figures - I do not know. It must have been through the Economic-Administrative Head Office, but I do not know anything in detail, and I did not deal with this at that time.

Dr. Servatius: But in his testimony, Hoettl stated that you gave him various figures. You are familiar with his statement. Would you please comment.

Accused: If Hoettl is here using figures, I must comment that no one received such figures from me, because I myself had none. In this connection it is odd that everyone claims to have received figures from me - one person says it was five million, the other six million, and as far as his concentration camp was concerned, Hoess talks of two and a half million. I am supposed to have given this figure to Gluecks. But I did not know of these figures - Gluecks is the person who was first and foremost aware of them, not I. So how am I supposed to have provided Gluecks' superior with the figures of Jews who were killed in the Auschwitz concentration camp?

This is all idle talk which was bandied about at Nuremberg, or wherever. I did not give any such figures, for the simple reason that I did not have them.

In addition, with regard to the question about Hoettl, I should like to say the following. I seem to remember that in this connection Hoettl also referred to someone telling him of a statistical report which was intended for Himmler. And here I should like to say that this business of the statistical report...there was just one such statistical report, as far as I am aware, around the turn of the year 1942-1942. But subsequently Department IV - that is to say, Section IVB4 - had to produce a monthly report on the number of Jews deported during the month in question, a report to the Chief of Department IV, who passed it on through official channels through the Chief of the Security Police and the Security Service to Himmler.

Dr. Servatius: I turn now to exhibit T/1359.

Judge Halevi: Excuse me, Dr. Servatius, I have a question about the last document you mentioned, No. 1357, on page 15. Perhaps you might want to ask the Accused about this, about the question at the bottom of the page, the question put by Dr. Merkel, and Hoess' answer.

Dr. Servatius: Merkel is here asking, "How do you explain" - previously he had said that the treatment of prisoners was exclusively in the hands of the Economic-Administrative Head Office.

"Hoess says, 'That is so.' How, then, do you explain the fact that you nevertheless had discussions with Mueller on various questions which concerned the concentration camps?"

"Answer: 'The Head Office for Reich Security or Department IV had executive power for all deliveries of prisoners, their subsequent allocation into the various camp levels 1, 2 and 3, as well as the punishments which the Head Office for Reich Security had to carry out. Moreover, executions and further accommodation of special prisoners and all resulting questions came through the Head Office for Reich Security or Department IV'."

Do you have the statement before you? It is Hoess' statement.

Presiding Judge: No, that was not the question; the question relates, of course, to the substance of the matter. It has not yet been asked.

Accused: I do not have the document before me, but I have understood the question.

[The document is handed to the Accused.]

Dr. Servatius: Witness, do you wish to comment?

Accused: On the basis of my own knowledge, I myself can hardly comment on this, as I had nothing to do with these executive matters, but here in my file I have document No. 175 which has, I believe, already been discussed twice, and this concerns such executive matters as escape by prisoners, cases of death, punishment by whipping, and so on, and there are specific rules here as to the appropriate channel to be followed. And here, for example, precisely because there is a reference here to the division into different camp levels, it says here: "Above all, at Stage 3, there is no question of applying to the Head Office for Reich Security or the Reich Criminal Police; this is to be decided from here."

I can but refer once again to the documents which I have seen here during my studies, but I do not know anything from my own knowledge at the time, and cannot say anything about this either.

For the sake of completeness I should like to add that I do know that Gluecks and Mueller spent a great deal of time together, and I would tend to assume that these matters were dealt with, and discussed by the two of them. As I have said, this is an assumption; I was never present at such negotiations.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/1359, document No. 731. This is a communication from the Head Office for Reich Security, Section IVC2, to various police offices, dated 10 July 1942. The following instructions are given with regard to female prisoners:

"A special division for female prisoners has been established at Auschwitz concentration camp. On instructions from the Head Office for Reich Security, female prisoners are therefore to be sent to that division."
The next exhibit is T/1251 - this is a report - document No. 506 - about a conference of the Advisers on Jewish Affairs of the German missions in Europe - held at Krumhuebel on 3 and 4 April 1944.

Judge Raveh: Mr. Hausner, you promised to make further copies available. We - at least I - have not yet received one. This is the Krumhuebel conference or the Krumhuebel meeting.

Attorney General: Here it is.

Dr. Servatius: Dr. Six, who was examined as a witness and was destined for the special London commando and also the Moscow one, appears here as the chairman of this conference. In his statement, he indicated that it would not have been difficult to avoid unpleasant orders, and that he tried to do so with success. This is the reason why I am referring to this document, because this successful attempt to avoid such matters meant his presiding over this conference. At the beginning it says here, "Welcome by Ambassador Professor Dr. Six, who passes the chair to Ambassador Schleier..." It is not quite clear whether he makes the comments which follow - apparently he does, and in his opening address he talks about the tasks and aims of anti-Jewish operations abroad.

Presiding Judge: That must have been Ambassador Schleier, who is mentioned immediately after this - he receives his authority from Six.

Dr. Servatius: Of particular importance here is page 3 - what the conference is dealing with. Each participant presents a paper. Mr. von Thadden speaks on "the political situation of Jews in Europe and the situation with regard to anti-Jewish executive measures."

Presiding Judge: On page 2 you have Dr. Six' ipsissima verba.

Dr. Servatius: In the second paragraph it says: "Ambassador Six then speaks about the political structure of world Jewry..." and then in the middle it says: "... Jewry in Europe has finished playing both its biological and its political role." Then at the bottom of the page: "...Ambassador Six then turns to Zionism. Zionism means bringing back all Jews to their homeland and their country of origin, Palestine. There they are to be united politically and biologically. But he says that the entire question of a return is politically overshadowed by the Arab question."

I have already quoted from page 3: "Mr. von Thadden talks about the political situation of Jews in Europe and the situation with regard to anti-Jewish executive measures," and then at the bottom it says: "Since secrecy is to be observed in respect of the details presented by the specialist officers about the situation with regard to anti- Jewish executive measures, these were not recorded in the minutes."

Exhibit T/1384, document No. 1106, is an affidavit by Pohl dated 2 April 1947. Under point 2 he says:

"I was personally acquainted with SS Gruppenfuehrer Lieutenant General of Police Globocnik, and had dealings with him in his capacity as SS and Police Leader. He set up the Lublin concentration camp. On one occasion Globocnik spoke of cleaning up the Lublin area for settlement purposes, and he made reference to the settlers' community which he intended to establish. Himmler entrusted him with the assignment of carrying out the programme against the Jews known as the Reinhard Operation."
I shall omit a whole series of exhibits and just mention three short documents which deal with transport matters. The first is T/1284, document No. 1373.

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, this does not appear in your lists, does it?

Dr. Servatius: It is quite possible that this document was not included in the list, being in French - it is a reprint of a newspaper article from a Romanian newspaper, reporting on a transport conference dealing with the deportation of six hundred thousand Jews from Romanian territory. I am referring to this document because it is signed Klemm, showing that the railway administration is organizing this matter. This exhibit links up with the next one, T/251, document No. 1253.

On 28 July 1942, Dr. Engineer Ganzenmueller of the Reich Railways in the Generalgouvernement notifies SS Obergruppenfuehrer Wolf of something about these transports. Obergruppenfuehrer Wolf is a member of Himmler's personal staff. The document shows who has arranged for these transports. It reads as follows:

"With reference to our telephone conversation of 16 July, I would inform you of the following notification from my Directorate General for Eastern Railways (Gedob) in Cracow for your information: `Since 22 July every day a train, with five thousand Jews per train, travels from Warsaw via Malkinia to Treblinka, as well as a train twice a week with five thousand Jews from Przemysl to Belzec. Gedob is in permanent contact with the Security Service in Cracow. The Security Service agrees that transports from Warsaw via Lublin to Sobibor (near Lublin) should be cancelled, as long as reconstruction of this route makes such transports impossible (about October 1942).' The trains were co-ordinated with the Senior Commander of the Security Police in the Generalgouvernement. The SS and Police Leader of the Lublin District, SS Brigadefuehrer Globocnik, is aware of the situation."
The last document in that regard is T/252, document No. 1537. This is the reply by SS Obersturmbannfuehrer Wolf, to whom reference has already been made, to Director General Ganzenmueller. This is the Wolf with whom Eichmann had had a disagreement. If I am not mistaken, this was because he was not prepared to carry out more lenient orders, or something of that sort. I shall read out what he writes here:
"I thank you warmly for your letter of 28 July 1942, also on behalf of the Reichsfuehrer-SS. I was particularly happy to see from your report that for the last two weeks one train a day has left for Treblinka, carrying five thousand members of the Chosen Race on each occasion, thus enabling us to carry out this movement of population at an accelerated pace. I have been in contact with the various departments involved, and it would appear that all the measures will be implemented smoothly. I should like to thank you again for your efforts in this matter, and would like, at the same time, to ask you to continue to devote your attention to these matters. Best wishes and Heil Hitler, Wolf."
Your Honour, this brings me to the end of this chapter - submission of documents and discussing them with the Accused. tomorrow I wish to comment on the various records of hearings of witnesses abroad, and to ask some questions of the Accused with regard to such records, as well as a few basic questions. However, this will not take a great deal of time.

Presiding Judge: Thank you very much.

After the end of the direct examination, we shall announce the reasons for our decision on the Sassen Documents, and after that it should be possible to commence the cross- examination of the Accused already during tomorrow's session.

The next Session will be at 8.30 tomorrow morning.


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