Session 019-01, Eichmann Adolf

Session No. 19
11 Iyar 5721 (27 April 1961)

Presiding Judge: I declare the nineteenth Session of the
trial open.

Mr. Bar-Or, you have submitted approximately fifty exhibits
to us. Usually the submission of these exhibits last about
one hour, as is customary with our criminal procedure. We
have spent the entire morning Session on the submission of
these exhibits, because you read extracts from the
documents, sometimes long extracts and sometimes in the
original language as well, hence requiring translation. We
are concerned that if we continue in this way – and I know
that your intentions are well-meaning – we are afraid that
if it continues in this fashion, this trial will exceed its
proper limits. It is the Court’s duty to prevent that, and
you, no doubt, will help the Court in preventing it.
Therefore, in future, there must be no quoting of the text
of documents, and also no reading of passages from them
except in special cases, where the party desiring to submit
the document will give a short explanation why it is
necessary to quote from it verbatim. The document will be
submitted, the counsel submitting it will briefly describe
it, and if he wishes to draw the attention of the Court to a
particular passage from the document, he should refer to the
opening words of the passage, and you may rest assured that
the judges will read the documents, and in particular the
passages referred to.

If, in the course of the presentation of oral testimony, it
becomes apparent that the testimonies cannot be understood
without reference to a document, you will be able to mention
the document at that stage, and we shall examine the
document to the extent that may be required in order to
understand the testimony.

We understand that the public at large is interested to know
the contents of these documents or, at any rate, some of
these documents. Of course, there is nothing to prevent you
from informing the public of the contents of these documents
in any way you deem fit, after each document has been
submitted to the Court.

And now, with regard to the oral testimonies, I already said
something on the subject yesterday, and I want to add that
we presume that, on those subjects which do not relate to
the personal responsibility of the Accused, but which are
intended to provide the general background of events, it
will, generally speaking, be sufficient if you would produce
one testimony in order to describe this background and there
should be no duplication and repetition of the same events
in more than one testimony, as has already happened in the
few testimonies we have heard hitherto. I ask for your
cooperation in order to render the proceedings in this trial
more effective.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Yes, Your Honour.

I should like to complete the set of documents concerning
the events with which we dealt this morning. There remain a
number of documents which were submitted to the Accused.
First of all Prosecution document No. 1176. The original, on
the Alexandria, Washington, microfilm No. 4 is on page 455,
and was submitted in T/37 under the reference number 302.
This is the report which was dictated by the SD agent
Botschwing in Berlin on 20 June 1938, concerning his trip
and that of Reichsbankrat Dr. Wolf and Assessor Siegert to
Vienna. There they met Eichmann. This document illustrates
the control that Eichmann exercised, inter alia, also over
the policy of the Reichsbank and the Ministry of Economics
and Finance in everything relating to the Jews of Austria at
that period. The Accused speaks about it, after this
document was shown to him, in his statement on pages 3451-

Presiding Judge: This will be T/149.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Thank you, Your Honour.

The next document is Prosecution document No. 1171 from the
same tape where it appears under the number 450. It was
submitted to the Accused and was here given the number T/37,
Sub-number 300. The Accused speaks about it on pages 3445-
3450 of his statement. It is an “Aktenvermerk” (minute)
dictated by Hagen in Berlin on 20 June 1938, in which is
stated that Eichmann informed Berlin by telephone about the
success of the negotiations between himself and his
“Dienststelle” (Office) and Reichsbankrat Wolf, and that,
from now on, the consent of Eichmann’s office, that is to
say, the offices of the district of Austria corresponding to
II 112, would have to be obtained before foreign exchange
permits could be given to Jewish emigrants by the other
competent authorities.

Presiding Judge: The memorandum on emigration from Austria
will be marked T/150.

State Attorney Bar-Or: The following document is
Prosecution document No. 91, which I am submitting in the
original copy which is contained in supplementary document
123 annexed to T/37. This is a report by Schroeder of
Department II 112 in Vienna, written on 10 November 1938, a
more or less comprehensive report on the operations against
Jewish synagogues in Vienna. That was in reply to a cable
from Berlin to Vienna No. 47767 dated 10 November 1938. The
original copy was shown to the Accused who refers to it on
pages 1680-1687 of his statement.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/151.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Thank you, Your Honour.

I pass on to document No. 1134. That is again an
“Aktenvermerk” of Dr. Loewenherz about a meeting with
Eichmann on 14 August 1939. This document was shown to the
Accused, it was annexed as supplementary document No. 303 to
T/37, and the Accused’s comments on this document appear on
pages 3455-3458.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/152.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Thank you, Your Honour.

Before I come to the report of Loewenherz, I should like to
point out, Your Honour, that I have ascertained here that
Dr. Loewenherz’ reports which were submitted here by Mr.
Less, were evidently those very copies which were shown to
Eichmann, and signed by him at the time of his
interrogation. Nevertheless our Minister Mr. Zidon, who, as
we know, obtained copies of these documents from Loewenherz,
has given me the original here, and I submit them to this
honourable Court. I shall have to return to these reports at
a later stage, for these reports stretch over the whole
period until 1943. I have marked the Prosecution numbers
exactly as I did in the case of the Washington numbers.

Presiding Judge: Are these Dr. Loewenherz documents?

State Attorney Bar-Or: These are photocopies of the

Presiding Judge: Only the reports?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Only the reports.

Judge Halevi: To whom were these reports given?

State Attorney Bar-Or: He had copies of these reports in
his possession and gave them, before he died, to the Israel
representative – Zidon – who made an affidavit on it which
was submitted to Mr. Bar-Shalom.

Judge Halevi: When did he write them?

State Attorney Bar-Or: The dates are given there. From the
Accused’s statement it appears that these reports were drawn
up in this form under an agreement between Loewenherz and
his colleagues with Eichmann’s office: an “Aktenvermerk” had
to be drawn up concerning each meeting; the original was
sent to the office of the SS, and the copy remained in the
possession of the members of the Kultusgemeinde. That is
how these copies reached us.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/153.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Thank you, Your Honour.

Presiding Judge: Are there no copies of these for the

State Attorney Bar-Or: They were submitted to the Court

Presiding Judge: All of them?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Only those which I have marked.
Others will still be submitted in the course of the trial.
Here we have marked the photostat copies relating to those
same “Aktennotitzen” which I submitted this morning.

After they have been marked I would request that the set be
returned to me, so that I may make use thereof in the course
of the trial later on.

Dr. Servatius: May I make a brief reference to this
document – namely that not all the reports were placed
before the Accused, but only the decisive passages that the
authority who dealt with the matter deemed advisable?

State Attorney Bar-Or: That is correct.

Presiding Judge: Is that as noted in T/37?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Yes, Your Honour.

Judge Halevi: By what numbers?

State Attorney Bar-Or: In the case of each Aktennotitz
which was placed before the Accused I marked the sub-number.
The others which were not relevant to T/37, were anyhow not
shown to the Accused. Otherwise I would have said so. They
were shown without any comment on the part of the Accused.

Dr. Servatius: This can easily be determined from the
record of the interrogation.

State Attorney Bar-Or: And now, before the end of this
chapter, I come to the most important report of the period,
the report of Joseph Loewenherz, which constitutes
Prosecution document No. 783, which was submitted to the
Accused in T/37 and received the sub-number 233. The Court
has heard about the significance of this report from Mr. Bar-
Shalom and from the affidavit of Mr. Zidon. I draw the
Court’s attention to pages 2683-2726 of the Accused’s
statement. This is a continuous passage in the Accused’s
statement in which he reacts to the contents of his report.
For the moment, at this stage of our case, I refer only to a
part of this report and I shall come back, at later stages,
to other parts of it.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/154.

State Attorney Bar-Or: The report relates to the period,
details of which have so far been proved to the Court. The
printed copy which I have submitted contains a total of 45
pages. And I rely here on that part which ends on page 16.
These pages are marked on the margin of the report,
consecutively until the end of page 16. This corresponds to
page 24 of the 63 pages. I end my present reference to this
report now with the words: “diese Ziffer schaetzt Eichmann
als zu hoch. Die Raeumung muss zur Gaenze im Laufe des
Jahres 1940 erfolgen.” (“In Eichmann’s estimate this figure
is too high. The total evacuation has to be completed during
the year 1940”). I shall ask your permission to refer to
this report, which continues until the period of 1943, on a
later occasion.

Here, Your Honours, I have a request. I have prepared a
translation of certain passages from this report. This
report does not give a general account of the life of Dr.
Loewenherz. Actually it is in the form of a general
synopsis, possibly more detailed, of everything contained in
the “Aktennotitzen” which the Court has seen, but in a more
consecutive and a fuller manner, the relations and the
difficulties that Dr. Loewenherz had in his contacts with
the Zentralstelle both during the period of Eichmann’s
presence there until the outbreak of the War and also
subsequently until the preparations for the first
deportation of Viennese Jews to Nisko – all these appear
here in detail. In the translation that I annexed I selected
those passages from the various pages which seemed to me to
be of special importance for the proof of our case.

Presiding Judge: We do not have a Hebrew translation here.

Judge Raveh: Have you already told us when this report was
drawn up?

State Attorney Bar-Or: This report was apparently prepared
towards the end of the War, it was apparently composed in a
narrative manner. It is not something which was prepared a
short time after the events. Its entire contents are based
upon notes submitted to the Gestapo week after week. I
suppose that this document, in fact, constitutes a kind of
narrative internal report that was drawn up by the
secretariat of Dr. Loewenherz’ office. This report was
already before the International Military Tribunal. It also
served as evidence against Baldur von Schirach at a trial
held in Vienna. We do not know exactly when and on what days
these words were written. We do know, from the testimony of
Dr. Loewenherz, that what is written here is correct, as far
as he knew. The report speaks actually of Dr. Loewenherz all
the time, and hence it bears the title “Loewenherz Report.”

Presiding Judge: Please find the Hebrew translation and
submit it to us.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Yes, Your Honour.

I now ask for leave to call Dr. Paul Meretz.

[The witness is sworn.]

Presiding Judge: What is your full name?

Witness: Dr. David Paul Meretz.

Presiding Judge: Please reply to Mr. Bar-Or’s questions.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Dr. Meretz, you graduated in Law
from the Universities of Vienna and Prague?

Witness Meretz: Yes.

Q. Until 1939 you practised as a lawyer?

A. Yes, a lawyer in Maehrisch-Ostrau (Ostrava).

Q. When did you leave Maehrisch-Ostrau?

A. I left Maehrisch-Ostrau on 14 March 1939.

Q. Was this a special day?

A. Yes, it was a special day – the day the Nazis invaded
Maehrisch-Ostrau. They arrived on 14 March, in the
afternoon, and I left at noon, after I received a phone call
from the offices of the Zionist Organization to the effect
that the Germans would arrive during the course of that day.

Q. You moved to Prague on 14 March 1939?

Q. I moved to Prague on 14 March 1939.

Q. What did you do in Prague from 14 March 1939?

A. At that time I was the chairman of the Zionist
Organization of Czechoslovakia, and I moved to Prague for a
few days. Great confusion prevailed there. On 15 March, in
the morning, the Germans entered Prague. I came to Prague on
the 15 March and already in the morning we saw that the
Palestine Office in Prague was closed. We were then invited
to the British Legation in Prague where ten entry permits
were available for the Zionist leaders, permits to enter
England. Only one or two made use of these permits to enter
England. Firstly, we did not want to leave the Jews there,
and secondly these permits were phrased in a very, very
dangerous manner. It said there “in recognition of your
efforts on behalf of the refugees from Germany.” If such a
permit were to be found on a person, it is clear what would
have happened.

Q. Did you come into contact with the Germans immediately?

A. It was like this. I was in Prague for several days. I
returned to Maehrisch-Ostrau in order to wind up my personal
affairs. I was arrested, but this was, in fact, because of
extortions on a personal basis, as it turned out later. I
spent a day at police headquarters and later found that my
office – a lawyer’s office – had been closed by the Gestapo,
and the office was reopened by a Nazi lawyer who was paid
for it. I still managed to remove incriminating documents
likely to endanger me. But it was so dangerous that at once,
two or three days later, I moved to Prague and took upon
myself the supervision and the conduct of affairs in Prague.

Q. Who were your colleagues in the conduct of the affairs in

A. In Prague we organized matters in the following way.
There was a Palestine Office there and this office had been
closed from the first day.

Q. Who was the director?

A. The director of the office was Ya’akov Edelstein. The
secretary of the Zionist Organization was Franz Kahn. Apart
from them there was also an engineer by the name of Zucker,
who ran the internal administration, and there was Dr.
Frantisek Friedmann who was our specialist in financial
matters. I was the chairman. We immediately abolished our
system of committees. It was impossible to operate in that
way; these five people constituted a kind of executive and
we functioned in conjunction with the other organization, at
whose head was Dr. Emil Kafka; he was the president of the
Prague Community, and Dr. Frantisek Seidemann was his
secretary. Two or three days after the closure of the office
we appeared before the chief official of the Gestapo; in
those days that was the Kriminalkommissar (Police
Commissioner) Fuchs. He told us that we could continue with
our work, we could keep the office open and run it, as of
that day, according to his instructions.

Q. The instructions of Fuchs?

A. The instructions of Fuchs.

Q. When were the offices opened?

A. I don’t know the exact date but it was during the first
week after 15 March.

Q. Perhaps you can remember something of the period before
14 March – before you moved from Maehrisch-Ostrau to Prague;
do you recall the migration of Jews into your town, into

A. It was not only Maehrisch-Ostrau. The movement began
after Munich.

Q. When was that?

A. Munich was…

Q. Not Munich, when did the movement commence?

A. The movement commenced from the day of Munich, on 8
November 1938.

Last-Modified: 1999/05/30