Appeal Session 01-04, Eichmann Adolf

In the first place, let us examine the participation of the
Accused in the use of gas for the purpose of killing. In the
opinion of the District Court, this matter originated in a
letter from Wetzel, the Judicial Counsellor of the Ministry
for Eastern Occupied Territories. The Prosecution submitted
this document as exhibit T/308. This is a handwritten draft
of a letter of this official responsible for Jewish affairs.
According to this document, at a meeting with Wetzel, the
Accused gave his consent to the establishment of gas
installations at Riga. The Accused denied this. It is
striking that the Accused’s name is not mentioned in this
handwritten draft, but a space was left blank. However, it
is inconceivable that, when drawing up the document, Wetzel
did not know the name of his interlocutor. This man,
Wetzel, has now returned to Germany after long years of
imprisonment abroad. Upon being questioned by telephone and
not in the course of judicial proceedings, he declared that
actually he did not converse with the Accused, but only with
Brack, a senior officer in the Fuehrer’s Chancellery and
probably with a Hauptmann Rooss. The witness was not
prepared to make a statement in writing to be submitted in
Court, as an investigation against him is still pending.

Justice Silberg Are you claiming that the blank space,
where the name is omitted, refers to Captain Rooss?

Dr. Servatius The document is hardly legible. At the bottom
of the text, it states “corrected by Captain Rooss.”

Justice Silberg Was Rooss a Sturmbannfuehrer at the time?

Dr. Servatius These police officers had various ranks. They
had ranks used in the SS and also service ranks, and it is
not clear in this text. The Accused says that in the text
Sturmbannfuehrer is not written at all, but “from the
Fuehrer’s Chancellery.”

Justice Silberg No, the word Sturmbannfuehrer appears in
one place.

Dr. Servatius It reads:”with Oberdienstleiter Brack,” then
a dash, “officer in charge,” then there is a blank space,
and thereafter there is a sign that could be an “H,” or
possibly “St.”

Justice Silberg Could it be “SD”?

Dr. Servatius Yes, perhaps.

Justice Silberg It reads “SD,” and then come two letters.
That gives the impression that…

Dr. Servatius This cannot be established with certainty.
Mr. President, I shall apply for the examination of that
witness. After all, he is best qualified to read his own

Attorney General I would like to know whether this is an
application for the hearing of Wetzel as a witness.

President I understand it to be so.

Attorney General If that is the case, would Counsel for the
Defence please tell us whether Wetzel knows that in the
conversation between Brack and Wetzel, Eichmann’s name was
mentioned, for that name appears in the final draft.

Dr. Servatius I do not quite understand the question – a
conversation between whom?

Attorney General Wetzel and Brack.

Dr. Servatius Yes, he told me over the telephone that he
had spoken to Brack.

Justice Silberg But the question is whether he had spoken
to Eichmann too.

Dr. Servatius Well, he denied having done so. He told me
that Brack had said something, such as that he would inform
Eichmann; but apparently he did not want to commit himself
as to details. Perhaps, may I add, he stated: “I made this
draft in the presence of my superiors, and therefore it has
been made somewhat hurriedly; it was a sort of dictation
given to me.”

Justice Silberg And how do you explain Wetzel’s letter –
not this one – from the Ministry for Eastern Occupied
Territories, in which he declares that Sturmbannfuehrer
Eichmann has given his consent to this procedure? This is a
letter dated 25 October 1941, also mentioned in the Green

Dr. Servatius I understand that to be the reference to the
Accused’s explanation of this document, T/37, page 2313.

Justice Silberg I am referring to a letter dated 25 October
1941. This letter is quoted in paragraph 167 of the
Judgment. In your application in respect of Wetzel’s
examination, you state that it was prepared in Nuremberg.
Whom do you mean?

Dr. Servatius May I explain this briefly. You see, upon
reviewing the documents, you find that the handwritten
transcription, the legible text, was made at Nuremberg by
the American authorities. This is shown by the file number
N.O. 996. In this case, an addition was made, by which the
name Eichmann was inserted, but which does not appear in the
handwritten text. The letter dated 25 October 1941…

Justice Silberg But, Dr. Servatius, we have heard your
arguments in respect of the typewritten copy, and we
understand them. But we do not understand what you are
saying in respect of the letter dated 25 October 1941 which
was also submitted at Nuremberg during the Doctors’ trial.
In that letter, Eichmann’s name was mentioned as having
consented to that procedure. What have you got to say about

Dr. Servatius The Accused points out that this cannot be
correct. This document dated 25 October 1941 was written on
an American typewriter and does not fit another draft typed
on a typewriter in double space. I think, the witness Wetzel
ought to be examined, and perhaps a handwriting expert ought
to be heard, who might be able to decipher it.

Justice Silberg Was Brack one of the accused in the Doctors

Dr. Servatius Yes.

Justice Silberg Did Brack deny the contents of the letter?
Was he shown the letter and was he questioned about it?

Dr. Servatius Although I was involved in the Doctors’
trial, I cannot remember this incident.

President Dr. Servatius, one thing is not clear to me. I
refer to the letter dated 25 October 1941, which I have
before me. I understand that, when a document is copied, a
certain word could inadvertently be copied incorrectly. But
in the letter of 25 October 1941 there is an entire passage
showing the Appellant’s opinion and his statements. Does the
Appellant claim that this letter was a forgery of the
American prosecutors and they themselves concocted the whole

Dr. Servatius There is reason for suspicion, because in the
legible text the name Eichmann had been inserted. I must
leave it to the Court to draw its conclusion in this matter.
Possibly no major inaccuracies occurred at Nuremberg.
However, I personally succeeded at the International
Tribunal, after a protracted debate, in obtaining the
rejection of an important document because, obviously, in my
opinion it was fabricated. I think that these material
questions ought to be put to the witness Wetzel, for he,
after all, ought to remember.


President Please proceed, Dr. Servatius.

Dr. Servatius Mr. President, may I revert again to the
Wetzel document. Possibly the following was the course of
events. More than one person was involved in the making of
the document. At the end of the document the remark “to be
submitted to the Minister” was abbreviated to four letters.
It looks as if words have been added and the draft
corrected. The witness Wetzel told me that the document
itself was never issued. In my opinion, it is possible that
Minister Rosenberg also intended to cover himself and that,
therefore, this document, was presented to him in the form
described above. I think it will be essential to question
Wetzel in that respect.

President Dr. Servatius, in his Statement made before
Captain Less, the Appellant’s view was that while this was
correct, what he said there, as to what was expressed in
this document, is also in compliance with orders received
from above. What was written in the letter was not the
Appellant’s opinion, but only the communication of orders
received from his superiors.

Dr. Servatius In my opinion, this is one of the attempts of
reconstruction on the basis of the documents produced. He
did not remember the incident. He says that he was not
involved in the affair, but if the document exists in that
form, it has to be assumed that it is correct. Then he says,
in that case “I probably received orders from my superiors.”
In respect of other incidents as well, this was his

May I add that the version that the document was forged does
not appeal to me. It seems to me more probable that the
solution is to be found in the participation of a number of
collaborators and that something was added. However, it is
characteristic that the first draft does not contain
Eichmann’s name. This document is of utmost importance for
the Accused. It is of special significance that he did not
participate in this event, for the District Court, assuming
that he had participated, reached the conclusion that he
also participated in later uses of vans for the purpose of
killing by gas.

However, the name of the Accused is not stated anywhere in
documents referring to vans used for killing by gas. In this
connection, the use of gas in the extermination camps has to
be discussed as well. The statement made in that respect by
Hoess, according to which the Accused is charged with having
initiated the method of gassing, cannot be correct. Hoess
contradicts himself in stating that one of his officers in
the SS had, later on, come across this method of gassing.

Rather the description given by SS Judge Morgen would seem
to be correct. According to this description, the method of
using gas for killing was introduced by Brack of the
Fuehrer’s Chancellery. This method is said to have been used
already by Brack’s unit in the killing of mentally deficient
persons, and these killings by gas are said to have been
developed by the Reich Physician, Dr. Grawitz.

SS Judge Morgen reports in his testimony – Defence exhibits
N/94 and N/95 – that in the investigations at the RSHA which
were carried out by him, no orders whatsoever for
extermination could be found. It seems that this would have
been impossible, since it reflected the authority of the
Economic-Administrative Head Office in these affairs.

President In all the material extant, is there any document
referring to the extermination as being regulated by law?

Dr. Servatius No, such a document does not exist.

President Dr. Servatius, nevertheless, the extermination
took place, you do not deny that.

Dr. Servatius No. This witness, SS Judge Morgen, stated,
furthermore, that the commander of the camp, Wirth, alleged
that he received a direct order from Hitler. Moreover, he
reports that Wirth told him that Hoess was his disciple who
never learned – that is to say, he [Hoess] had received his
orders from Wirth and not from Eichmann.

Justice Silberg You mentioned before that somewhere in his
notes, Hoess stated that his deputy, Fritzche, was the man
who initiated the method of killing by gas.

Dr. Servatius I do not know whether the name was Fritzche
or Hoefle, but he said that one of his officers had come
across this method of killing.

Justice Silberg Never mind; but Zyklon B gas was invented
later on. The Judgment refers to Zyklon B, and Zyklon B was
something new which was invented later on, wasn’t it ?

Dr. Servatius Probably something else was used at first
such as exhaust gas, then something else and eventually
Zyklon B.

Justice Silberg And the Judgment attributes that to the
Accused; he received it from Gerstein.

Dr. Servatius I wish to refer to the case of Gerstein later
on. I would like to mention that, if the Accused at that
time had been involved in exterminations by gas, it is
highly improbable that he would have readily admitted having
visited such installations.

President Dr. Servatius, when the Appellant made his
Statement before Captain Less, he could not yet have known
what evidence was available against him. I ask you, if a
person making a statement does not know exactly which
documents exist – would it not be easier to say, “yes, I
have seen gassing”? If he makes a different statement,
perhaps a document exists disproving his reply. Therefore,
it is simpler to say, “I have seen it,” which is true. In
that way he admits having seen it.

Dr. Servatius That is possible, but I think most people
would prefer to close their eyes to such crimes rather than
open the doors wide, in order to make them visible. I
believe that the Accused would not have mentioned gassings
in connection with Guenther. He stated in that respect that
Guenther had once mentioned something to him about gas, and
he reproached him for meddling in such matters.

I shall now refer to the Gerstein affair, that is to say
the procurement of prussic acid. It is not the Accused who
is mentioned here, but Guenther of the staff of his Section.
The implication of Department IV is in contradiction to the
structure of both Head Offices. It was stressed repeatedly
in the Lower Court that, strangely, Guenther’s name always
appears in connection with medical affairs, so that it has
to be assumed that he had a special assignment to arrange
these matters.

I shall now revert to another subject, the collection of
skeletons at the University of Strasbourg.

Incriminating documents have been produced by which the
Accused was asked for help in this matter. However, the
answer to these documents, from which his involvement might
be deduced, is missing. From the administrative point of
view, this matter did not come within the scope of the
Accused’s duties. Neither could this authority be conferred
upon him by a unilateral approach being made to him.

A hint that the Accused was not actively involved in this
matter is to be found in the fact that, in his meticulously
kept diary, the director of Ahnenerbe (Ancestral Heritage),
Sievers, does not mention the Accused’s co_operation.
Instead, again Guenther’s name comes up. Possibly Guenther
was given a special assignment to deal with this matter, in
the same way as in the matter of the supply of gas.

President Dr. Servatius, the Judgment reads somewhat
differently. It states that Sievers approached Gluecks, the
Superintendent of Concentration Camps, and Gluecks referred
him to the Appellant. A conversation took place between
Sievers and the Appellant, who said that he would need a
letter from Himmler. After this letter was issued,
instructions were given by the Appellant’s Section to
Auschwitz. What is the connection with the fact that
Gluecks, who had been requested to provide the collection of
skeletons from Auschwitz, referred him to the Appellant?

Dr. Servatius The Accused’s explanation was as follows: He
had no authority in this matter; it was dealt with by
Oberdienststellenleiter Brack who did not know who was the
person competent to deal with it and thought that the
Accused had the authority. He gave him these instructions.
The Accused said that, at any rate, he did not deal with the
matter, and his name was not mentioned in writing. I leave
it to the Court to draw its conclusions.

President No. My question was directed to the following
point: Gluecks is approached with the view of making
available Jews for the purpose of tests and experiments. If
the Appellant dealt only with matters of transportation, how
do you explain the fact that Gluecks referred him [Brack] to
the Accused? He dealt only with matters of transportation,
he was a subordinate of low rank. Well, how did Gluecks know
that it was precisely the Appellant who had to be

Dr. Servatius The Accused relies on the following argument:
I did not have any authority, and if an unauthorized person
sent such a letter, this could not make me responsible, and
I did not take such a responsibility upon myself. I did not
give a reply nor did I do anything.

Justice Silberg Dr. Servatius, the Accused, Appellant, has
admitted having received T/1365, the letter from Brand to
Eichmann dated 6 November 1942. He has admitted having
received that letter. At the end of the letter, it states
that “as to particulars, Sievers will contact you,” that is
to say Eichmann, the Accused. Does this not prove that
Sievers was right in saying that he had met the Accused?

Last-Modified: 1999/06/15