Session No. 46
4 Sivan 5721 (19 May 1961)
Presiding Judge: I declare the forty-sixth Session of the
trial open. Mr. Bar-Or, please continue.
State Attorney Bar-Or: With the Court’s permission, I am
still on the same subject, the expulsion of the Jews from
the centre of Belgrade. I proceed to document No. 648, a
letter dated 13 September 1941 from Rademacher to his
superior in the Foreign Ministry, Luther. He says:
“I cannot see the necessity of the expulsion of the
1,200 male Jews, if not to Romania, then to the
Generalgouvernement or to Russia, as requested by the
office of the representative of the Foreign Ministry in
Belgrade… In my opinion it should be possible given
the necessary rigour and determination, to keep the
Jews in camps also within Serbia. Should the Jews
continue to provoke disturbances there, they will have
to be dealt with under strict martial law. I cannot
imagine that the Jews will continue to conspire, once a
considerable number of hostages have been shot…”
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/876.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Now on to document No. 649.
Benzler, the German Minister in Belgrade, is not reassured.
Things are not moving. He refers again to his telegram No.
608, and this time he addresses the Foreign Minister
personally on 28 September 1941. He says:
“I have repeatedly requested the assistance of the
Ministry with the immediate expulsion of local male
Jews from Serbia, but this has been refused. May I
remind you that in Fuschl you expressly promised me
your help with accommodating the Jews, as well as
Freemasons and Serbs who sympathize with England,
either further down the Danube, or in concentration
camps in Germany or in the Generalgouvernement. An
immediate solution of the Jewish Question is at this
moment a most important political task here, as well as
a precondition for tackling the elimination of
Freemasons and intellectuals hostile to us.”
He asks that action be taken for the expulsion of the Jews
from the country. It is a matter of 6,000 male Jews “whose
accommodation in local camps is not possible.” He requests
that they be expelled to islands in the Danube delta. This
seems to him to be the simplest solution from all points of
view. Together with Veesenmayer he asks for the support of
the Foreign Minister in this matter as a first condition for
the bringing about permanent peace which he envisages.
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/877.
State Attorney Bar-Or: And now Prosecution document No.
650, from Luther to the State Secretary at the Foreign
Ministry, dated 2 October 1941. He refers to the telegram
from Benzler of 28 September 1941, which we have just read.
He sums up Benzler’s arguments and adds that in other
districts other military commanders got rid of a much
greater number of Jews “ohne ueberhaupt darueber zu reden
(without so much as mentioning it).” At the end he asks for
permission to discuss this question with Obergruppenfuehrer
Heydrich, who will come for a brief visit from Prague to
Berlin within the next few days. “I am convinced that, in
agreement with him, we can very quickly arrive at a clear
solution on this question.”
Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/878.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Next, Prosecution document No. 651.
On 2 October 1941, Dr. Weber, from the office of the Foreign
Minister, sends a note to Luther about the telegram from
Belgrade concerning the expulsion of Jews from Serbia. He
says Ribbentrop asks that immediate contact be made with the
Reichsfuehrer-SS, in order to clarify the question whether
he could not accept another 8,000 Jews, in order to deport
them to Eastern Poland or to some place elsewhere.
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/879.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Prosecution document No. 1044. On 5
October 1941, Luther sends a telegram to the German legation
in Belgrade: “It has been agreed with Obergruppenfuehrer
Heydrich that a special representative of the Head Office
for Reich Security will come to Belgrade shortly, in order
to settle the question raised in the telegram. Name of the
representative and time of his arrival will be indicated
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/880.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Now on to document No. 1045. Luther
of the Foreign Ministry to the German legation in Belgrade
on 8 October 1941: “Further to telegram…(the previous
one), Sturmbannfuehrer Eichmann, accompanied by Counsellor
of Legation Rademacher, will come to Belgrade in the course
of next week. Exact time of arrival will be notified.”
Signed – Luther.
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/881.
State Attorney Bar-Or: And now on to document No. 1162.
This programme did not materialize. The Accused could
apparently not get away, and now, in this further telegram
from Luther, Belgrade is informed: “Instead of
Sturmbannfuehrer Eichmann mentioned in the telegram of 8
October 1941, Sturmbannfuehrer Suhr und Untersturmfuehrer
Stuschke” – whom the Court will certainly remember from
yesterday – “will come as representatives of the Head Office
for Reich Security, and Counsellor of Legation Rademacher
will travel together with them. The gentlemen will arrive
on Saturday on the 7 o’clock train from Budapest.”
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/882.
State Attorney Bar-Or: We go on to document No. 170, which
was shown to the Accused; the Court marked it T/37(58). The
Accused refers to this document on page 1147 ff in his
Statement. This is Rademacher’s report, filed in the
Foreign Ministry on 25 October 1941, about his journey to
Belgrade with Stuschke, in order to evaluate the situation
I shall sum up in brief: He says at the outset that the
purpose of his official journey was to find out on the spot
whether the problem of the 8,000 Jewish instigators, whose
deportation was being demanded by the Belgrade legation,
could not be settled on the spot.
“In the course of the conversation it turned out that,
to begin with, it was not a matter of 8,000 Jews, but
only of about 4,000, of whom, furthermore, only 3,500
could be shot. The other 500 were needed by the State
Police for maintaining health and order services in the
ghetto which is to be established.”
On page 2 he says:
“Detailed negotiations with the specialists for the
Jewish Question, Sturmbannfuehrer Weimann from the
office of Turner, the Head of the Regional Headquarters
of the State Police, and with Standartenfuehrer Fuchs”
– whom we remember – “and his Jewish specialists
resulted in the following: 1. The male Jews will have
been shot by the end of this week, and thus the problem
raised in the report of the legation is settled. 2. The
remainder, about 20,000 Jews (women, children and old
people), as well as about 1,500 Gypsies, of whom the
men are also still to be shot, are to be concentrated
in the so-called Gypsy Quarter of Belgrade which will
serve as a ghetto. Basic food for the winter can be
Further down, on page 2 and page 3, he says:
“Those Jews and Gypsies who are not shot as a reprisal
are first to be concentrated in the Gypsy quarter, and
later, during the night, they are to be deported to the
Serbian island of Mitrovica. Two separate camps are
to be set up there. In one the Jews and the Gypsies
will be housed, and in the other 50,000 Serb hostages.
Then, as soon as the technical possibility is available
within the framework of the total solution of the
Jewish Question, the Jews will be deported by water to
the reception camps (Auffangslager) in the East.”
Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/883.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Now document No. 652. The matter
finally came before Secretary of State Weizsaecker. He is
not satisfied with all the bargaining and travelling, and on
22 November 1941 he notes in his files:
“The Fuehrer’s Order of 28 April of this year provides
that the Representative of the Foreign Ministry is
competent to deal with all questions relating to
foreign policy in Serbia.”
Then he goes on to say:
“Minister Benzler, and with him the Foreign Ministry,
therefore has to deal with the deportation of Jews from
Serbia to other countries. On the other hand, it is
beyond the task of Benzler and the Foreign Ministry to
take an active part in the competent military and
interior authorities’ coping with the Jewish Question
inside the Serbian borders. As is well-known, they
receive their instructions through different channels
from those of the Foreign Ministry. I told Benzler so
orally today. It is recommended to inform him
accordingly also in writing.”
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/884.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Here it is evident that Weizsaecker,
the Secretary of State, wants to rid the Foreign Ministry of
the practical day-to-day dealings with this matter.
I go on to document No. 653, a note from Rademacher to
Luther on 8 December 1941. Benzler has come to Berlin from
Belgrade and has informed him over the telephone that:
“A change has occurred in the plan for the method of
dealing with the Serbian Jews; the Jews would no longer
be taken to a Serbian island, but to the Semlin camp
instead. The island which had been envisaged
originally was inundated. The Croats had agreed that
the Jews be taken to Semlin as a transit camp.
Minister Benzler asked that the Jews be therefore taken
East as soon as possible. I replied that this would be
out of the question before the spring, because
deportation from Germany had priority. Even
deportation in the spring was still in doubt.”
It is impossible, after all, to deport all the Jews to the
East all at once.
Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/885.
State Attorney Bar-Or: Now on to document No. 654. Luther,
writing to Weizsaecker on 12 December 1941, refers to the
note of 22 November 1941. He recalls that in that note it
is laid down that Minister Benzler, as well as the Foreign
Ministry, has to deal with the expulsion of the Jews from
Serbia to other countries. He mentions the telegram No. 701
concerning the expulsion of Jews from Serbia, in which the
Foreign Minister had asked to contact the Reichsfuehrer-SS
immediately, and to clarify the question whether it was
possible to take over 8,000 Jews for the purpose of transfer
to Poland or to some other place. Luther therefore writes
that he has to assume that it was in conformity with the
view of the Foreign Minister that the Foreign Ministry
became involved in a matter which, in itself, was rather
delicate. “For this reason, and since the matter has anyhow
to be regarded as settled, I do not think it advisable to
give Minister Benzler corresponding written instructions
again.” This is the follow-up to Weizsaecker’s proposal on
Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/886.
State Attorney Bar-Or: I proceed to document No. 33. Here
we have before us the list of the operational formations
which operated in the area here called “the former
Yugoslavia.” In it we find SS Standartenfuehrer and Major
of Police, Dr. Fuchs, who is responsible for the Special
Operations Group of the Security Police and the Security
Service. I also direct attention to Special Operations
Detachment Belgrade, where we find SS Sturmbannfuehrer Kraus
and, as his deputy and State Police Expert, SS
Sturmbannfuehrer Helm, whom we shall frequently meet in the
course of this morning.
Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/887.
State Attorney Bar-Or: And now, with the permission of the
Court, I shall call Dr. Salz.
Presiding Judge: [To the witness] Do you speak Hebrew?
Witness Salz: I am sorry, but I shall speak German.
[The witness is sworn.]
Presiding Judge: What is your full name?
Witness: Dr. Hinko Salz.
Presiding Judge: Where do you live?
Witness Salz: In Tel Aviv.
Presiding Judge: Please answer Mr. Bar-Or’s questions.
State Attorney Bar-Or: You are a general practitioner and
Witness Salz: Yes.
Q. You are active in your profession in Tel Aviv now?
Q. You were born in Herzegovina in 1906?
A. Herzegovina is the region. It is a small town there.
Yes, in Herzegovina, 1906.
Q. What is the name of the town?
Q. You attended school in Yugoslavia and studied at the
Universities of Zagreb and Vienna?
Q. You received your medical degree in 1931, and then you
specialized in dental medicine?
A. Yes. I worked as a general practitioner for a short
while, and then I specialized in dental medicine.
Q. Where did you live until February 1941?
A. Until February I lived in different places. My last
place of residence in February 1941 was Slavonski Brod, an
industrial town in Yugoslavia.
Q. Slavonski Brod is in a part of Yugoslavia called Croatia?
A. Yes, it is in Croatia.
Q. You were recruited into the Yugoslav army as a reserve
officer, were you not?
A. Yes, in February 1941 I was recruited for military
Q. When did war against Yugoslavia break out?
A. On 6 April 1941.
Q. Please tell us what happened to you when the war broke
A. On the day when the war broke out, i.e., on 6 April 1941,
I was with an infantry regiment at the Romanian-Yugoslav
border, that is to say, facing the town of Bazias in
Romania, on Yugoslav territory.
Q. Please continue.
A. I want to be brief. On 6 April the war started. The
regiment to which I belonged began to retreat without having
made contact with the German army. The strategic situation
was totally confused. During this retreat we became
involved in battle with German troops. Shortly after this
battle, we were surrounded by German troops and taken
Q. Did you succeed in escaping from the prison camp?
A. Yes, we were taken to a prison camp located in the
barracks of the Royal Guard, and I managed to escape from
Q. Did anybody help you with this, and who was it?
A. At that moment nobody helped me. I shall come back to
this later. I escaped alone. The Germans guarded us very
superficially, and I was successful – people had warned me
that I would lose my life, but I risked it and I managed to
escape. But very shortly afterwards, on my way from the
camp, I came to a roadblock which the Germans had put at a