Session 098-04, Eichmann Adolf

Presiding Judge: Have we received this document? T/376 –
have we received three copies of this, as in the case of the
previous documents? The last document you mentioned, T/376,
did we receive that in due order?
Attorney General: Yes, indeed. There are three – here you
are – one of these I should like to hand to Dr. Servatius,
if I may, thank you, and also the report on the assignment
to groups. Exhibit T/375, is that correct?

Accused: I did not understand that, Mr. Attorney General.

Q. And also the reports about the assignment to the various
groups, the number each group should contain and who was to
go to concentration camps.

A. Yes, all the reports which were made.

Q. I should now like to submit a German translation of
T/379. Regarding co-operation with the authorities of the
Generalgouvernement, it is made clear that in case of need,
supplementary instructions or further instructions were
issued by the authorities there, as for example in T/375.
Correct? Look at this. Krueger issues supplementary
instructions about matters of implementation. Is that

A. Yes. The Head Office for Reich Security issued
regulations, and the Higher SS and Police Leader was able to
order any additions which he saw fit.

Q. But for arresting Polish priests or clerics, for that
each individual arrest had to be specially authorized by
your organization. Is that correct? Every case of arrest
of a Polish cleric had to be specially authorized by IVB4.
Is that correct?

A. I gather that from this document, yes.

Judge Raveh: Was all this translated back into German, so
that this is not the original German text?

Attorney General: These documents were published by the
Polish authorities in the official language of the courts
only, Polish, and we translated them from the Polish. [To
the Accused] And when instructions about executions are to
be transmitted to Zichenau, Eichmann passes them on.

A. Yes – pass them on – if I was ordered to do so, I had to
do so. I did not issue them.

Q. It says here that the instruction was issued by the
Reichsfuehrer. But why was it you who had to be the
transmission channel for such orders for execution? Why
Eichmann in particular? Did the Reichsfuehrer not have any
way of contacting Zichenau? It just had to go via Eichmann?

A. The letterhead – the reference – shows that the local
State Police office or regional State Police headquarters
sent their enquiry to Department IV, and that is why I
received this matter for further processing, and I had to
process it as the transmitting office, in accordance with my
orders. I had after all to do what I was ordered to do.

Q. What had the Jews done who are referred to in T/200 and
T/201, so that you passed on the orders to hang them in
Zichenau? What was their crime?

A. The text does not show this – today, I cannot comment on
this. Out of caprice one never, nobody…

Q. Perhaps, by chance, you might remember. You pass on
orders for the hanging of people in public in the presence
of their co-religionists. But why? Why did you do this?

A. Because I had Himmler’s orders, this was passed on…a
copy of it was forwarded in accordance with orders. I could
not change anything if what Himmler ordered was passed on
through official channels. There was nothing I could change
on my own initiative, I could not add anything and could
not… –

Presiding Judge: No, that is not an answer; can you remember
what was the offence or crime of these Jews who were hanged?
“Yes” or “no”?

Accused: No, today I no longer remember that.

Attorney General: Every order for the execution of Jews went
through you, was passed on by you?

Accused: No, I have gathered from the documents that not
every order went through me.

Q. But how many such orders went through you?

A. Today, I do not remember this either. I did not pass on
matters of the Generalgouvernement, I did not pass on
matters of the Reich territory…

Q. Very well, so how many – dozens, hundreds, thousands –
approximately how many?

A. They were always just individual instances which had to
go this way. And I think that it was not until later on,
because previously another Section…

Q. How many, how many?

A. I cannot say – I refuse to give any information here,
because I just do not know. I cannot give a figure. I
would just have to state a figure out of the blue. If I am
ordered to do so, I shall do it. But…

Presiding Judge: No, no – you will not have to state figures
out of the blue.

Attorney General: So you maintain that you were merely a
transmission channel for orders?

Accused: If you please, that can be seen from all the

Q. “Yes” or “no”? If that is so, why was it necessary to
inform you of the implementation. Why did IVB4 have to
receive the report?

A. Because after all it is a single file, which had to be
processed in its entirety from beginning to end, and there
are regulations about procedure, so that I…if underneath
here I write “please notify implementation,” then the
order…the general instruction will have been that
completion is to be notified as such up to Himmler, and that
is why there are these orders about implementation and

Q. In other words – you are the known channel through which
Himmler passes on executive orders to the State Police
stations, and through you Himmler receives confirmation that
the hangings have been carried out.

A. Not in all cases. Just now I even remember a telegram
which Mueller dealt with, and this also concerned Jewish
matters – sabotage matters to be precise – and I had no
competence at all there… A different section head was
competent in that matter.

Q. Very well, that may be. So in sabotage matters you were
not competent, but when it came to straightforward murdering
of Jews, that was your scope of duties, was it not?

A. Once again, I can only say again – because the documents
prove this – IVC2, for example, also handled matters
directly on its own responsibility, it did not have first to
go to a Section…we have a case here where this happened,
where a file was dealt with.

Q. But why did this not go through IVB2? Why did it go
through you?

A. I do not know, because it got to me on its way. I have
no idea – today, I can no longer remember.

Q. Because the murder of innocents goes through your hands,
is that not so?

A. No, I must deny that.

Q. In this matter I still owe the Court the translation into
German of exhibit T/380. I should, therefore, now like to
fulfil this obligation.

Judge Halevi: I have a further question on exhibit T/371.
Perhaps the Accused can be shown the document – Prosecution
document No. 285.

Attorney General: The German translation is before the
Court; I only have the Polish translation.

Judge Halevi: What does “Verschiebung nach dem Osten”
(displacement Eastward) mean?

Accused: Today, I can only interpret this to mean that
these groups were deported from the Generalgouvernement to
the occupied Russian territories. As to their being
deported from the Generalgouvernement, whether this is
correct, I do not know, but that is the only thing I can
gather. I would definitely be able to be more precise if I
knew…what the decision on Group III means. I do not
know…I do not remember.

Q. But for what purpose, and to what location in the East?

A. I do not know; I am not trying to be evasive here. I
imagine that it could just as well be for killing as for any
other purpose, and that is why I wondered…I do not know
what was ordered as regards Group III, what was to happen to
Group III. This did not concern Section IVB4; IVB4 had to
deal only with technical transport matters about these
things, as shown by the files. That is why I simply
described all the possibilities; I do not know what was the
actual situation, and that has to be checked with the files,
I have no idea.


Presiding Judge: Please proceed.

Attorney General: Before we proceed to another chapter, I
should like to check on something with you. In the proposal
to kill these Jews in Zichenau, if I understood you
correctly, this proposal came from you to Himmler, went from
you to Himmler, and came back to you from Himmler, and from
you went to the State Police offices for implementation. Is
that correct?

Accused: Yes, with the qualification that it reached me
from the State Police office, then went from me via Mueller,
from Mueller to the Chief of the Security Police and the
Security Service, Himmler, and back through the same
official channels – that is correct.

Q. And it was along the same lines that the reports about
implementation reached you, and went from you to Himmler and
from Himmler back to you for filing away. Is that correct?

A. That is probably how it was, yes.

Q. Very well. So the file went to Mueller with your
proposals, or without any proposals from you?

A. It was accompanied by a request for instructions,
entirely in accordance with the regulations.

Q. Without any proposal at all from the Section Head?

A. Certainly, because the proposal came from the local
police office.

Q. And you said nothing at all as to whether you, as the
Section Head responsible, went along with this proposal, or
whether you were of a contrary opinion? Nothing?

A. According to what I am aware of, the State Police office
at that end began the report with a reference to decree such
and such, of the such and such, and then sent in its
report. The official-in-charge in the Section normally, as
was the practice, for reasons of – what shall I call it – it
was for the sake of convenience – took out that part and
passed it on with the request for instructions. That was
how things were done.

Q. But that was not my question. Himmler could accept or
reject the local proposal, could he not? But your Section
must have had to make some recommendation here. So who made
the recommendation to him?

A. The Section did not have to make any proposal, but the
local State Police office here asked for permission, or at
least asked for instructions. Section IVB4 had to check
whether the decree referred to by the local State Police
office in each case was still valid or not. If it was
valid, the matter had to be transmitted automatically via
official channels; if it was no longer in force, this matter
would immediately be halted in the Section, and then the
State Police regional headquarters or office would be
notified that this decree no longer applied. It was the
Section’s duty to check this. This was not just for such
cases – it applied to all cases.

Q. So the State Police office did not know whether Himmler
could issue an order for implementation or not? That had to
be checked in the Section?

A. The check was as to whether the orders or decrees or
instructions referred to by the State Police office were
still in force or not.

Q. We know that Himmler’s executive powers were laid down at
an early stage and were never withdrawn, so why are you
talking about orders or instructions which were or were not
withdrawn? After all, these orders remained in force
permanently, continuously, all the time.

A. That I do not know; in any case, the orders and the
decrees kept changing. There was continuous movement in
this respect.

Q. Himmler had the power to order shootings or executions
all the time, without interruption, did he not?
A. Yes, but I…

Q. So the Section had nothing to check – it just had to
order, or to recommend or not, is that correct or not?

A. Not to recommend, the matter at issue was not
recommending, in this case, but asking for instructions as
to what decision was to be notified to the State Police
office – that is not quite correct, Mr. Attorney General.
In this case, too, I believe that this was subject to
various changes. This concerned Reich territory. Zichenau
had in fact been incorporated into Reich territory. That
made some difference.

Q. You will agree that the State Police office in Ciechanow
was perfectly familiar with the Reichsfuehrer’s address, if
it wanted to contact the Reichsfuehrer. Is that not so?

A. Yes, but that was prohibited.

Q. Moreover, there was a legal department in the Head Office
for Reich Security which could check whether implementation
was or was not still covered by a valid order. Is that not

A. But it did not deal with individual cases.

Q. Who had to check on all individual cases? Through whom
did every individual case involving Jews go?

A. Where the area of competence of Department IV was
concerned, IVB4, my Section.

Q. All right. In one of the sessions, in reply to a
question from your Counsel, you said that in one single case
you took a decision about the destination in one case, and
instead of sending them to the East to be exterminated, you
sent them to Litzmannstadt. This involved Jews from the
Reich. Is that correct?

A. Yes, that was the very first case of deportation where
there were two alternatives.

Q. All right. So at last we come to a case where you took a
decision. Very well, this concerned Jews from the Reich, as
it says in T/220, document No. 1248, did it not?

A. Yes. And I also said that this was the first and last

Q. Very well. And this consignment left in September 1941.
Transport in September 1941. Is that correct?

A. I do not know whether the transports went off in
September, or whether those were the preliminary
arrangements in September.

Q. Then read it. Just read it through.

A. I believe that the transports went off in October 1941,
but the preliminary arrangements were in September. It
really makes no difference – September or October – but in
any case it is these transports.

Q. In any case, at the end of September, the beginning of
October, you decided that this transport should go to
Litzmannstadt, because if it were to be sent to Minsk or
Riga, death would be in store for them. That is what you
said, is it not?

A. Yes – I do not believe that I put it as baldly as that –
but I was impressed by the first notification I had heard
about the physical Final Solution.

Q. You said that – I believe your words can be checked in
the record, it was in Session No. 78 – you said that you
sent these Jews to Litzmannstadt because you wanted to save
them. I even noted the page references. If you wish to
know where it was, it is on pages S1 and T1 of the German
version of Session 78.* {*Volume IV, pp. xxxx, xxxx} If you
want to look at it, please do so. I will give you the
record. If it is not correct, please correct it

A. No, it is basically correct.

Last-Modified: 1999/06/13