The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 98
(Part 2 of 6)

Attorney General: T/361 only contains deportations from the Warthegau and does not contain deportations from the Zamosc area, does it? If you would look at this, please.

Accused: The first two pages definitely deal with the Warthegau, while the last one only shows the towns listed here, and I am unable to say whether all these towns are in the Warthegau. But that could be checked very easily.

Q. We have checked this, and I am telling you that all of these places are in the Warthegau. At that time Theodor Dannecker was already one of your subordinates in IVD4, was he not?

A. Yes, Dannecker was least I think it was repeatedly...once, in any Section IVD4 or IVB4, I do not think he was in IVB4, he was in IVD4 until he was transferred abroad.

Q. Look, for example, at one of your recommendations for his promotion in rank, with your signature.

A. Yes, there is in fact no date there, but in any case it can easily be worked out, because it says he is in Section IVD4, as I said. I believe he was not under me in IVB4, but in IVD4 he was definitely with me. This confirms what I have stated.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/1425.

Attorney General: In your activities in IVD4, did you work with a body known as Treuhandstelle Ost (Trustee Office East)?

Accused: I would not necessarily stress that I worked with the Treuhandstelle Ost office, because "working with" something implies a continuous close link. But in his decree issued as Reich Commissioner for the Strengthening of German Folkdom, Himmler designated the Main Trustee Office East as the body to receive the assets of those who were evacuated, and it is therefore quite possible that there was a link here during bureaucratic operations.

Q. They had to take possession of all the property of the persons who were evacuated or deported, or to take it into their safekeeping. That was the function of the Trustee Office East. Is that correct?

A. Yes, that was the function of the Trustee Office East.

Q. And at the meeting in January 1940, which you chaired, these people participated in the consultation about deportations in the East - they took part in the consultations, did they not? The representative of the Trustee Office East, as you can see in this document, took part in the meeting which you chaired, did he not? It took place in Gdansk, did it not?

Presiding Judge: I believe it was Berlin, not Gdansk. Is it T/171? "Fand in Berlin eine Vorbesprechung statt" (A preliminary consultation took place in Berlin).

Accused: Yes, T/171.

Attorney General: I believe so, Your Honour. I remember now that, while the document bears the indication Danzig, it refers to a meeting in Berlin. Thank you for the correction.

[To the Accused] Now, in this meeting, which was chaired by you, the arrangements relative to the property the deportees were allowed to take with them were fixed. That is to say, they had to leave everything behind and were entitled to take only one hundred zlotys with them. Is that correct?

Accused: Yes, in accordance with Himmler's orders as Reich Commissioner for the Strengthening of German Folkdom.

Q. Are you aware that these deportees had to suffer dreadful torments, the most appalling torments?

A. I am aware that until I took over the Section, in fact - and I have also said this, and the reports say the same thing, and there are documents - the disorder and the confusion were absolutely appalling. Often people remained in the railway trucks - I have read in the reports here - for eight days, and that is the reason why a section of this type was set up in Berlin. As far as I know, this sort of thing never happened again. It is possible that, as a result of local shortcomings, there was the odd case where there was inadequacy, but as far as possible every effort was made to put an end to and avoid these things.

Q. Look at T/210, for example. This is dated March 1940, in other words several months after you started working in this field. Did such dreadful circumstances come to your attention?

A. Yes, this is the Lublin affair. Heydrich himself ordered the deportation of, I believe, one thousand Jews from Lublin - this can be seen in the minutes of the meeting on 30 January 1940.

Q. But you carried this out, IVD4 was responsible for carrying this out. You carried this out, didn't you?

A. No, not with rounding-up; that can also be seen from the whole matter. The Stettin affair was a local one. I would ask for the relevant minutes of the meeting to be read. At that time it was demanded, I think - there was even a deadline - that this matter be disposed of within two weeks. But the orders did not come from me.

Q. But you carried this out? That is my question.

A. I did not carry out the Stettin deportation.

Q. So who did carry it out?

A. The local authorities responsible took part in the consultation on 30 January, did they not? And this was carried out by the local authorities; I do not even know whether I had to draw up the timetable for this. I would not necessarily question the latter, although I do think it quite likely that it was not even necessary for this one transport train to involve the Reich Ministry of Transport. It might well have been the case that this was also dealt with locally. I cannot remember exactly what happened here. However, I do believe that the guidelines were generally applicable to all these instances. I am not able to say anything more about this. Also, at the moment I do not remember the relevant documents.

Q. Here you are, this is the record of the meeting. It states here that from now on and in the future IVD4, and only IVD4, is to carry out deportations.

A. I am familiar with this passage; I cannot find it right now, but I know that it is in there somewhere.

Q. Very well, I shall hand the document back to you, and you can look for it there.

Judge Halevi: But you can see it at once on page 7. About Stettin.

Accused: I only have up to number 5 here.

Attorney General: I shall give the Accused my copy.

Accused: This is more complete. On page 3, second paragraph, it says here explicitly:

"IVD4 is to collect this statistical material and to draw up the evacuation plan."
Then, on page 7, in the second paragraph, it says:
"SS Gruppenfuehrer Heydrich stated that after the three indicated mass movements" and so on, "part of the Poles..."
Next paragraph:
"In the middle of February 1940, one thousand Jews from Stettin, whose apartments are required urgently for war economy reasons, are to be evacuated and also deported to the Generalgouvernement."
And then, in the last paragraph, it reads:
"Following this meeting, the officials-in-charge at the Inspectors for the New Eastern Territories (Ostgaue), and of the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service in the Generalgouvernement met with III ES and IVD4 to discuss the specific questions."
What happened was this: IVD4 had here to deal with matters involving technical timetable aspects, while matters involving rounding-up and technical aspects of evacuation were dealt with by the precursor of the Central Resettlement Offices, III ES, and IVD4 had nothing at all to do with the local matters. Rather, there was central control of technical timetable matters from Berlin, by the Reich Ministry of Transport, and that was in fact the reason why the Section, this special Section, which in fact originally was known as Special Section, was actually set up.

I had missed that - on page 1 it says what I have just said - in the last paragraph: "The previous complaints simply related to the fact that in prior evacuations " - in other words, before my Section became involved - "the figures originally set were not respected, but were exceeded. The establishment of Section IVD4 to provide central control of evacuation assignments does away with the misgivings expressed." If I might, in conclusion, make a statement, the matter will, I believe become quite clear.

Presiding Judge: Very well, but you must remember that you are being cross-examined, and that you have to answer questions, not make statements. However, this time I will allow you to do so.

Accused: Thank you very much. When Himmler issued the evacuation order, all the authorities proceeded on a local basis and simply deported on their own initiative to the Generalgouvernement. It is quite obvious that there were major unpleasantnesses; to put an end to them, the Chief of the Security Police and the Security Service, Heydrich, intervened and set up a Division IVR or IVB4 in Bureau III3ES; the function of these bodies was to arrange things properly. It was my assignment to control technical transport matters, so as to ensure that deadlines were respected, and so that figures would not be exceeded.

Attorney General: But your Section also handled such things as petitions from Poles who wanted to remain where they were and not be evacuated. Is that correct?

Accused: I do not know about that.

Q. No? Then look at exhibit T/172 - I am showing you T/172: What do you have to say about that?

A. What I have to say about this is that this is a category of persons which was evacuated - it was not determined by IVB4 but by Department III - the document shows this. But if, in the case of Seidl...definitely from a Central Resettlement Office, I would imagine, or an Inspector in Posen, is enquiring about the category of persons, this enquiry would basically involve ascertaining the total number of those to be deported, because in my Section I had primarily to receive the total figures of those to be deported: only on the basis of these figures was it possible to draw up the timetable.

Q. But you can see that applications are dealt with from those who want to be included in the list of the German people. There are seven thousand such applicants, are there not?

A. Yes, but these seven thousand applicants...

Q. For once say "yes" without "but."

A. Yes, there are seven thousand applicants, only...

Q. Then there is the third paragraph there, is there not? The third paragraph, which starts "SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann." Perhaps you would read out this sentence.

A. "SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann referred to the express order of the Reichsfuehrer-SS, according to which for the interim plan only Jews and Congress Poles may be evacuated."

Q. What is a Zwischenplan (interim plan)?

A. At the end of 1939, Heydrich divided this entire project up into a short-term plan and long-term plan, and each plan was then further subdivided into sub-plans. Therefore, an interim plan is a part of either a short-term plan or of a long-term plan.

Q. I am not asking you about definitions; what did you mean when you spoke here about an interim plan?

A. Either the interim plan for achieving the first short- term plan - I gather that there are three short-term plans here - because a long-term plan must also be broken down in turn into short-term plans, after all.

Q. So what was the long-term plan?

A. The long-term plan was the result, I believe, of the discussion of the central plan changes in Cracow, or on 30 January 1940. I do not know in detail...

Q. So what is it? What was discussed there? What does it mean?

A. The total number of those to be evacuated within a certain period of time. This is shown precisely by the minutes. Yes, it was on 30 January 1940, that is when this figure was laid down, and I believe that these minutes state what had to be deported by the end of 1940, and the order was also issued as to what had to be deported by the end of 1941. And so, in accordance with these figures, the short- term plans were therefore drawn up - the first, second, third short-term plans, and the long-term plan. The latter can be gathered from two telegrams by Heydrich at the end of 1939.

Q. You took part in the meeting on 30 January 1940, together with the personnel of your Department: Guenther, Dannecker and Rajakowitsch?

A. Yes, this is shown by the list of those present.

Q. And apart from Minister Seyss-Inquart, the participants were also Mr. Heydrich himself, Globocnik, Katzmann, Meisinger, Ohlendorf - a distinguished gathering, was it not?

A. All of the leaders mentioned attended.

Q. It says here specifically that the deportation from Stettin must be carried out according to this decision, that is to say by IVD4 - is that correct?

A. If that is in there, then it is also correct, because, as is shown by the entire set of minutes, it was up to me to deal with timetable matters. That is correct.

Q. Very well, so that is how it was. And you therefore carried out the deportation from Stettin.

A. No - again, that is not correct, not in such an absolute form.

Q. It says that you had to carry out this matter. The matter was carried out, the decision was taken in the presence of the elite of the Reich, you were given the assignment - so what happened then? Are you saying that someone else carried this out, not you?

A. A deportation operation consists after all of several parts; it is not one single independent item, and there are various bodies involved in it; insofar as I was competent, naturally I had to handle the work, also for the deportation of Jews from Stettin.

Q. Well, there you have it, that is it.

A. But I did not carry it out, this cannot be said in this absolute form, because it is not true.

Q. But when you were approached and asked for your permission for money or parcels to be sent to those deported from the Reich to the Generalgouvernement, were you the one who refused such permission?

A. It was not up to me to refuse or to allow something. I had to convey what I myself received as an instruction.

Q. Just a moment. The Jews who were deported from the Reich and who remained alive in distress - relatives wanted to help them, they approached you in writing and asked in certain circumstances for your approval for parcels to be sent, and you replied "no," the Jewish institutions in the Generalgouvernement were to take care of that, and you would not permit money or parcels to be sent from the Reich. Is that correct?

A. Yes, I wrote that, but what else could I do, if I myself was instructed to write like that and give that answer. After all, I cannot of my own initiative approve something which I have been told not to do. That is how things are in any office, and that is exactly how things were then.

Q. Would you explain, why does it concern you whether Jews from the Reich send some money or parcels to their relatives in the Generalgouvernement?

A. A central authority - any central authority receives a great number of applications. These applications fall into those which are immediately identified as not belonging to the authority addressed, and are rejected as being of that nature. Others, where the word "Jews" appears, for example, and where I would say to myself Generalgouvernement, resettlement - the resettlements were under way - for these Heydrich himself, my Chief or Mueller would be directly involved. I would not dare here to take any decision myself; I would obtain instructions, and that is how things would be.

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