Session No. 74
28 Sivan 5721 (12 June 1961)
Presiding Judge: I declare the seventy-fourth Session of the
Decision No. 79
We have decided, by majority vote, to accept in evidence,
from the document which has been called by the Attorney
General the “Sassen Document,” only that part which, in the
expert opinion of Superintendent Hagag, is described as
“File 17,” that is to say, the photocopies of the comments
which were recorded by the Accused in his own handwriting.
To the extent that File 17 included notes on what purports
to be a transcript of the Accused’s tape-recording, we also
admit those sections of the transcript to which these
comments refer, insofar as these sections may be required in
order to understand the comments. We admit the expert
opinion of Superintendent Hagag for the purpose of verifying
the Accused’s handwriting, since Defence Counsel did not
object to the submission of that opinion. This opinion is
marked T/1392. We reject the application of the Attorney
General beyond what is stated in this decision.
Judge Halevi: dissents from the aforegoing limitation and he
is of the opinion that the entire “Sassen Document” should
be admitted in evidence, apart from the transcripts of those
tapes concerning which there are no corrections or comments
in the Accused’s handwriting.
Our reasons for this decision will be given at a later
We have assumed that as a result of this decision, Mr.
Hausner, you will be able to submit File 17 forthwith;
thereafter you will have to undertake the special task of
extracting from the transcript those portions to which File
Attorney General: I am also unable to say, at the moment,
which excerpts we can attach or annex to the comments
appearing in File 17. This requires a certain amount of
arranging of the material.
Presiding Judge: Will you not be able to do that today?
Attorney General: We shall certainly not be able to do that
Presiding Judge: If you can submit File 17 separately…
Attorney General: File 17 is a separate document and it can
be submitted; that presents no difficulty.
Presiding Judge: Do you have a copy of it?
Attorney General: We also have a printed copy of it, for we
have deciphered it and made a printed copy thereof.
Presiding Judge: Very good – then you can submit it and you
will still have something for yourself. Is this what it is,
in three envelopes?
Attorney General: Yes.
Presiding Judge: You have two copies of the photostats, I
Attorney General: Three.
Presiding Judge: Of the actual photostat?
Attorney General: Yes. There ought to be three copies of
Presiding Judge: So far I have only received two.
Attorney General: There ought to be another one. We
prepared larger packages – we planned to sort them out.
Presiding Judge: We shall call your File 17, T/1393.
Attorney General: With the Court’s permission, since I am
not able to submit the remaining excerpts now, I would
request some time to do so at a later stage; and I shall
then draw the Court’s attention to several extracts from
those which the Court has admitted as evidence. But I shall
not do so now, for I might introduce other extracts which
are not admissible – I do not have it sorted out according
to the Court’s decision.
Since Superintendent Hagag is present, perhaps the Court
will allow me to call him to the witness box, so that he may
clarify for us those portions of the Mufti’s documents that
have remained obscure.
Presiding Judge: Has he something to say?
Attorney General: Yes, he has something to say.
Presiding Judge: How have those documents been marked?
Attorney General: Superintentent Hagag has them, I
understand. Mr. Bodenheimer enabled Superintendent Hagag to
examine them, and he will submit them, once again, to the
Presiding Judge: Mr. Bodenheimer, did you hand the Court’s
documents to Mr. Hagag?
Clerk of the Court: Yes.
[Mr. Hagag is sworn.]
Presiding Judge: What is your first name, Mr. Hagag?
Witness: Avraham Hagag.
Attorney General: You are an officer in the Criminal
Identification Department – Investigation Division – at the
National Headquarters of the Israel Police?
Witness Hagag: Yes, Your Honours.
Q. Do you have a thorough knowledge of Arabic?
A. Yes, Your Honours.
Q. You have in your possession a number of documents which
are Court exhibits. Please tell us what you can read in the
Arabic writing in those documents. Kindly identify each
document, which you mention, by its number.
Presiding Judge: Is Arabic your mother tongue, Mr. Hagag?
Witness Hagag: Yes, Your Honours.
Your Honours, amongst the documents I am holding is one that
was given the number T/1267.
Dr. Servatius: May I ask that the original number of the
document be mentioned also, since I do not have the exhibit
Attorney General: Do you have the number of Bureau 06?
Superintendent Hagag No. 1036. Your Honours, this document
is a photocopy of two pages of a diary, a Turkish “Agenda”,
of 1944. In these two pages the names are written in Latin
characters, and opposite each name there is a remark in
Arabic. In the section relating to 9 November, a Thursday,
the name of Eichmann is written in Latin characters, and
above it there are two lines of Arabic writing. I have
deciphered the Arabic writing after comparing the
characteristics of the handwriting of Hajj Amin al-Husseini,
and according to these characteristics it was possible to
decipher the Arabic writing above it in this manner.
Presiding Judge: Perhaps, now, you would care to approach us
– this applies to you gentlemen also, if you so wish.
Attorney General: I rely totally on Superintendent Hagag.
Presiding Judge: As you please – whoever wishes to approach
us, may do so.
Witness Hagag: our Honours, the first words are “fairus
nadira jiddan.” The translation is “a very rare diamond.” In
the second line: “Wa-Kheir Mukhlis lil-Arab” – “The best
redeemer for the Arabs.” Below it says: “”Dagobert von
Mikusch,” once in Latin characters and once in Arabic. It
says 70 years, and there is also a remark in Arabic “to send
greetings to him.” Above that it says “Major Osterhof,
Hotel Imperial.” It says in Arabic “On the subject of Derna
in its entirety.”
Presiding Judge: What is “Derna”?
Witness Hagag: There is a town in Lybia called Derna.
Q. Could the first word be “Farouk”?
A. No. I have compared it, letter by letter, with the normal
handwriting of the Mufti. In this handwriting there is a
special characteristic, namely that the use of vowel points
is not regular – sometimes it appears with vowels, sometimes
without. The second characteristic – he joins together
letters which in Arabic are not supposed to be joined
together, such as the letter ” r” with the final “h”. This
is something which is not joined together in Arabic, and he
joins them together, in exactly the same way that their
letter “w” does not link up with “d”, as for example in the
word “maudu’a.” Therefore it cannot be “Farouk.” “Fairusa”
is a sapphire, a diamond, a precious stone, a very rare
stone. “Wa-Kheir Mukhlis” – here we have two loops which
can be either “m” or “is” or “h” or “r”. And here it is
definitely “s”, since three points appear here. We have,
here, three points in Arabic, like an “accent” and here it
is written diagonally, and he usually writes the three
Q. And now something is missing here.
A. Possibly it is blurred or…
Q. It is clear that it is a word.
A. It looks like an “n” or something.
Q. Here there are some letters.
A. No. These are the points of “”Mukhlis”. Here there is a
“Hamza”. Your Honours, I have seen in the handwriting of
Hajj Amin al-Husseini that he also embellishes his
handwriting as in ornamental writing – sometimes marks are
made above or below.
Q. As in the Koran?
Q. In ordinary handwriting as well?
Q. Where did you see this?
A. I am prepared to show the Court.
Q. Very well, give us just one example; we do not want to go
into this too fully. In general, tell us what comparative
material you used?
A. [Shows some pages to the Presiding Judge.]
Q. Is this from the same material?
A. From the same material and also from other material of
his. This sign here, this “Hamza”, does not belong either
to the word above or to this word – it is a superfluous
embellishment. One can find many such examples in Arab
[The witness points to an extract from the left-hand column
Presiding Judge: This example will be sufficient for us, Mr.
The enlargement made of the diary will be marked T/1394.
Attorney General: Mr. Hagag, now, so that all of us may
understand, what are the words in Arabic appearing above the
word “Eichmann” written in Latin characters?
Witness Hagag: Your Honours, as we have deciphered it,
relying on the regular characteristics of the handwriting of
Hajj Amin al-Husseini, I have interpreted this writing to be
“fairus nadira jiddan” and “Kheir mukhlis lil-arab” – a very
rare diamond and the best redeemer for the Arabs.
Q. A very rare diamond and the best redeemer for the Arabs,
and underneath that – in Latin characters – Eichmann.
Presiding Judge: Is that the Arabic which is generally used:
“Kheir mukhlis”? This is somewhat strange.
Witness Hagag: It is pure Arabic, good Arabic.
Q. Nachawi (literary Arabic)?
A. Yes, Nachawi. Hajj Amin always used flowery expressions.
Q. From a grammatical point of view does “Kheir mukhlis”
A. Yes, we all remember, for example, his motto: “Takalam el
saif” – “the sword has spoken.” Such expressions appear in
Q. Should that not be “the best of the redeemers” – “Kheir
A. “Wa-Kheir Mukhlis” – the best of the redeemers or the
best redeemer for the Arabs.
Q. You say that, at any rate, this is correct from a
grammatical point of view?
A. Yes, it is possible this way.
Q. Because it could possibly be the plural of the word
“mukhlis” What is the plural of the word “mukhlis”?
Attorney General: Is there another Court document that has
been handed to you?
Witness Hagag: I have already returned it.
Q. I believe we have already deciphered that other document.
There was a word which was not important, regarding Tripoli.
We did not bother Mr. Hagag with that.
A. I deciphered that, too.
Q. Please, read it to us.
A. This is document No. 1307, Exhibit T/1273. The
translation is “the plan for cleaning up the Jews and
confiscation of their property in Tripoli before the
Presiding Judge: There was something else there about
bombing the enterprises in Haifa. Were you able to read
Witness Hagag: Yes, Your Honour, that is another document,
in document No. 1305, Exhibit T/1268. The translation is:
“The bombing of Tel Aviv and the Dead Sea and Rutenberg and
Haifa, and the war industries there.”
Attorney General: Thank you.
Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, do you have any questions to
Dr. Servatius: Sir, with regard to document T/1267, where
Eichmann’s name appears, are you able to determine whether
that is the handwriting of Husseini or of someone else?
Witness Hagag: Hour Honour, I was not given comparative
material written by Hajj Amin in Latin characters which
would enable me to determine whether the name “Eichmann” was
written by Hajj Amin al-Husseini or by someone else.
Q. Are the entries in Latin characters in that diary, namely
those of 10 November, in the same handwriting as the name
A. No, Your Honours, that is not the same handwriting.
Q. Does that apply to the Latin characters of “7 November”?
A. The Latin characters of 7 November resemble the letters
of 10 November and do not resemble the word “Eichmann.”
Dr. Servatius: I have no further questions.
Judge Halevi: If I understand you correctly, Superintendent
Hagag, the Arabic above the word “Eichmann” is in the
Witness Hagag: Yes.
Q. Did you have sufficient comparative material?
A. I had sufficient comparative material in Arabic
characters, but not in Latin.
Presiding Judge: Thank you, Superintendent Hagag, you have
concluded your testimony.
Attorney General: With the Court’s permission, my colleague,
Mr. Bar-Or, will now submit a number of documents – not
Presiding Judge: What has happened?
Attorney General: More material has reached us. I also said
this morning, Your Honour, that we have more documents.
Presiding Judge: This is after sifting out or before?
Attorney General: Before sifting. We are troubling the
Court at this late hour only with matters which appear to us
to be important; had we not thought so, we would not be
adding additional documents to the collection of documents
which, as it is, is formidable.
State Attorney Bar-Or: First of all, let me fulfil my
undertaking towards the Court. In Session No. 47, the
affidavit was admitted of Mr. Erwin Lenz, which is T/999. I
promised the honourable Court that I would go into the
question of his address – if he is still alive – in order
that Defence Counsel would be able to decide whether he
would wish to question him. With the aid of the West German
authorities, I have succeeded in obtaining the address of
Mr. Erwin Lenz, and it is: 9 Tiesenhagenerstrasse, Spandau,
Berlin. The matter relates to Decision No. 45.
Presiding Judge: In what sector of Berlin is Spandau?
State Attorney Bar-Or: I do not know, but Defence Counsel
should be in a position to help in this connection.
Dr. Servatius: I also have not got to the bottom of the
mysteries of that city.
Presiding Judge: Whas that T/999?
State Attorney Bar-Or: Correct.
The Court asked me to inform it of the address, if I were
able to ascertain it, so that Defence Counsel could decide
whether he wants to summon him. I presume Defence Counsel
will let us know whether he wants to move the Court in this
matter. The decision was that the statement of Lenz was
admitted, with the right of Defence Counsel being reserved
to interrogate him before the Court, after the Prosecution
will have ascertained whether it was possible to trace him
Presiding Judge: Is that in connection with the Aegean
State Attorney Bar-Or: Rhodes and the Islands in the Aegean
Presiding Judge: Let us hear Dr. Servatius’ reply.
Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, the Presiding Judge, I have to
study these matters – I do not remember all the instances by
heart – perhaps I can submit my reply in writing.
Presiding Judge: I would ask that after you have gone into
this matter, and if you want to examine Lenz abroad, to let
us have your notification to that effect, and then we shall
see what to do about it.