Judgment 31, Eichmann Adolf

On 15 May 1942, the Accused’s Section (over Guenther’s
signature) reports on the situation to the Foreign Ministry:
20,000 Jews – most of them fit for labour – were evacuated
to Auschwitz and to Lublin, and on 4 May the evacuation of
20,000 additional Jews to Lublin began, and it is intended
to carry on the evacuation at the rate of from 20,000 to
25,000 persons per month (T/1089). At the end of May, the
embassy in Bratislava receives word that the Accused will
pay a visit there, in order “to discuss problems connected
with the operation of the evacuation of Jews from Slovakia
now in progress.” The visit took place, and when in
Bratislava, the Accused also met Mach, the Slovak Minister
of the Interior (T/37, p. 2879 etc.).

This stage of the evacuation was concluded at the end of
June 1942, and at a consultation held at the office of Prime
Minister Tuka, Wisliceny announced that the Jewish Action
was in its final stages, that 52,000 Jews had been
evacuated, and for the time being 35,000 Jews remained

(c) There was a respite in evacuations up to 1944, when the
Slovakians demanded that permission be granted to visit
camps, as a preliminary condition for the renewal of
evacuations (T/1106, dated 13.4.43; letter signed by the
Accused, dated 8.1.44, T/1110; and the Foreign Ministry
reply, dated 14.1.44, T/1111). The answer to this request
came in a letter dated 7 February 1944, signed by the
Accused (T/1112): For understandable reasons, he objects to
visits by strangers to the camps in the East, and proposes
instead a visit to the “Ghetto for the Aged” at Terezin,
which always served to mislead foreigners, as will be
mentioned later.

Evacuations from Slovakia were renewed once again after the
outbreak of revolts there in the autumn of 1944. From a
report dated 9 December 1944 (T/1130), it is learned that
Operations Units arrested nearly 10,000 Jews, and that 7,000
were taken to German concentration camps.

The summary is to be found in the testimonies of Dr. Abeles
and Dr. Steiner (Sessions 49 and 50, Vol. II). Dr. Steiner
testified that from September 1944 to March 1945 over 12,000
Jews were expelled, some of them to Terezin and
Sachsenhausen. According to his statement, over 70,000 out
of the 90,000 Slovakian Jews were exterminated, that is some
eighty per cent (Session 50, Vol. II. p. 912).
105. The second “puppet state” to be set up by the Germans
was Croatia.

Anti-Jewish laws were published there already in 1941
(T/889), and on 25 February 1942, Artukovic, the Croatian
Minister of the Interior, delivered a speech in parliament,
calling for the purging of the state of its Jews (T/891).
Evacuations began in the year 1943. On behalf of the
Accused’s Section (T/907 and p. 1142 of his Statement T/37),
Abromeit dealt with these matters in co-operation with Helm,
the Police Attache at the German Embassy in Zagreb. The
concentration of Jews in preparation for the expulsion was
carried out by the Croatians (Ustachis) themselves. The
Croatian Government consented to pay to the Reich thirty
Reichsmark for each evacuated Jew (T/903). On 19 January
1943, an agreement was drawn up between Helm and Abromeit,
on the one hand, and the Croatian Government on the other
(T/907). Helm and Abromeit divided the work between them,
leaving Helm to supervise activities within the state, while
Abromeit was responsible for the evacuation of Jews across
the borders of Croatia. On 4 March 1943 Helm cables the
Foreign Ministry that the evacuation of 2,000 men is
imminent and requests that the Accused be informed (T/908).
On 10 April 1943, the Accused’s Section enquires (signed by
Guenther) when the evacuation will begin (T/910). The
evacuation is carried out. On 15 July 1943, the RSHA
enquires from the Police Attache about 800 Jews who,
according to rumours, are still in concentration camps, and
demands action for their evacuation to the East (T/916). A
further letter sent by the Accused’s Section during the same
period deals with 400 Jews in Croatia for whom the Jewish
Agency made efforts to obtain immigration permits to
Palestine. Immigration permits for 75 children from amongst
these 400 Jews were already confirmed. The Accused’s
Section issues an order to prevent the immigration to
Palestine of the 400 Jews, by their early evacuation to the

A part of Croatia was under Italian occupation. The
Italians rounded up and arrested the Jews in the area, but
did not deport them from the country (T/905-906). After the
Badoglio coup, the RSHA took action in this area as well,
and Abromeit was ordered to see to the evacuation of the
Jews who still remained there (T/919, dated 16.9.43). For
this purpose, a special Operations Unit of the RSHA,
commanded by Krumey, was sent there in October (T/920, dated

According to an official Yugoslav report (T/892, p. 9), only
1,500 out of 30,000 Croatian Jews remained alive.

106. As far as Serbia is concerned, we must go back to an
earlier period, to the year 1941, to describe an event which
is fraught with meaning for the evaluation of the Accused’s
general attitude, as well as for the evaluation of his
evidence before us. In April 1941, Germany attacked
Yugoslavia, and Serbia became German-occupied territory. In
the autumn of 1941, 8,000 male Jews were rounded up in
Belgrade. A series of documents was submitted to us
describing the fate of these Jews. On 8 September 1941, the
representative of the German Foreign Ministry in Belgrade,
Benzler, proposed sending them to one of the islands in the
Danube delta. This proposal is not accepted. Benzler
continues his efforts to deport the Jews, and his next
proposal is to send them to the Generalgouvernement area or
to Russia. On the cable containing this proposal (exhibit
T/874, dated 12.9.41), there is a note dated 13 September in
the handwriting of Rademacher, at that time the Foreign
Ministry Adviser on Jewish Affairs, which reads as follows:

According to information from Sturmbannfuehrer Eichmann RSHA
IVDVI” (the reference is undoubtedly to IVB4) “there is no
possibility to take them to Russia or to the
Generalgouvernement. Even Jews from Germany cannot be
accommodated there. Eichmann proposes to kill them by
shooting” (Eichmann schlaegt Erschiessen vor).

In the year 1948, Rademacher was questioned at Nuremberg in
connection with this document and said (T/875, p. 3) that he
made this note while reporting on the matter to Luther (his
superior in the German Foreign Ministry); and he continues:

“I still remember distinctly that I was sitting
opposite him (Luther), when I telephoned the Head
Office for Reich Security, and that I wrote down in my
own handwriting key words from Eichmann’s reply and
passed them over to Luther during the telephone
conversation. Eichmann said words to the effect that
the army were responsible for order in Serbia and that
it would just have to kill the rebellious Jews by
shooting. In reply to my further question, he repeated
simply: `Kill by shooting’ (Erschiessen) and hung up.”

The Accused categorically denied before us that he had said
these words. According to his contention, Rademacher forged
the document, by adding the words in question later on.

This was not the spontaneous reply given by the Accused when
Superintendent Less put this document before him for the
first time. Then he did not doubt the correctness of the
note and said:

“…I did not myself give the order to kill by
shooting, but, as all those matters, I handled this one
in the service channels, and the order by my superiors
was at the time in fact: To kill by shooting.” (T/37,
p. 2356.)

But already on p. 2417 of his Statement, the Accused changes
his contention, and in fact puts forward the same version
(in a milder form), as the one he told us, namely – forgery
on the part of Rademacher.

The Accused explained this version at length during his
examination-in-chief (Session 83, Vol. IV, pp.xxxx16-18) and
his cross-examination (Session 97, Vol. IV, p. xxxx34 et
seq.). The gist of his contention was that Rademacher
carried out the forgery a few days after 13 September,
following differences of opinion within the Foreign Ministry
about the manner of dealing with this matter.

This version is neither based on facts, nor is it logical,
as the forgery could have been discovered immediately, and
then (a few days later) the truth would very easily have
been established. Under the circumstances, it is
inconceivable that Rademacher would have taken such a risk
upon himself.

Thus, what remains is the Accused’s denial that he ever
uttered these or similar words at all, and this denial we do
not accept. Document T/874 was kept in the files of the
German Foreign Ministry. Prima facie it appears that the
note was made during the usual course of business; hence its
truth can be assumed not only from the formal aspect, but
also as regards its contents; that is to say, that the
conversation with the Accused took place and that the
Accused said what was noted. The Accused did not succeed in
reversing this assumption, because his denials, both in his
Statement and in his evidence in Court, lacked credibility,
and we are convinced that the Accused expressed himself as
written in T/874.

The Foreign Ministry informed Belgrade on 5 October 1941
(T/880) that a special representative of the RSHA would
reach Belgrade shortly to settle the matter. This
representative was to have been the Accused himself (T/881),
but it was finally decided to send two other men in his
stead. One of them was Suhr, who is known to us as a member
of the staff of his Section. He was accompanied by
Rademacher, who submitted the report on the results of this

Last-Modified: 1999/05/27