The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 18
(Part 4 of 6)

Holocaust, Adolf Eichmann, Eichmann trial, holocaust, Jewish holocaust
With the Court's permission, I now pass on to Prosecution document No.1054. This is part of a speech by Alfred Rosenberg on 7 February 1939, where he speaks about a proposal to solve the Jewish Question by the establishment of a Jewish reservation in Madagascar or Guyana. This was a document of the Defence for Streicher No. 8 before the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg. It appears in volume 51 of IMG on pages 545-547. I wish to submit these pages.

Presiding Judge: T/118.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This quotation comes from the Voelkischer Beobachter of 8 February 1939. With the Court's permission I shall read only one sentence from it. On page 2 it says:

"In conclusion, the Reich Commissioner dealt, in a wide historic review, with the development of the Jewish question since the emancipation of the Jews until the present and stressed that for National-Socialism the Jewish question in Germany will be solved only when the last Jew will have left the territory of the German Reich."
I beg to submit Prosecution document No. 782. It is quoted from the Document Book in Nuremberg Trial No. 9 against Ohlendorf. It was Defence Document No. 221 of 25 January 1938, regarding the way in which police authority should be used to imprison people who are under control of the authorities, in concentration camps. I draw the Court's attention to several of its instructions. I request to submit copies of the document. I might add that already before the trial against Ohlendorf and Pohl* {*Case 9 of the subsequent trials was United States v. Otto Ohlendorf et al. (Pohl's was Case 4).} the document was Exhibit U.S.A. 207 before the Nuremberg International Tribunal and was submitted by the American Prosecuting Authorities as document PS-3040.

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/119.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I wish to draw the honourable Court's attention to paragraph 1, on "Admissibility" (Zulaessigkeit):

"Protective custody can be ordered as a coercive measure by the Gestapo in defence against tendencies hostile to the State and the people, against persons who endanger by their behaviour the existence and the security of the people and the State. (2) Protective custody may not be ordered for penal purposes or as a substitute for penal imprisonment. Criminal acts are to be tried by the courts."
Paragraph 2 - Authority (Zustaendigkeit):
"(1)Only the Gestapo is competent to order protective custody. (2) Application for an order of protective custody must be addressed to the Gestapo through head- units or units of the State Police. All requests are to be substantiated in detail: the allegations of the arrested person must be set out. A copy of the interrogation of the provisionally arrested person must be forwarded immediately. (3) Protective custody may be ordered only if the accused has first been heard on the charge against him."
Paragraph 6 - Implementation (Vollstreckung):
"In principle, protective custody is to be carried out in the concentration camps of the State."
In this matter, Your Honour, I have yet another document which cannot be submitted properly without attaching another document which I shall have to prepare after the intermission, because the second document to which I shall refer was submitted to the Accused. If the Court agrees, I would suggest that we pause now.

Presiding Judge: What do you intend to do after the intermission, to present more documents?

State Attorney Bar-Or: I wanted to complete the picture in respect to Austria and then to continue with witnesses who will testify on Czechoslovakia.

Presiding Judge: As you wish. Is there another series of documents?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Yes, there is another series. I am at your disposal: I can start with the second series now and return to this series later.

Presiding Judge: We shall have to digest these documents sometime. It would be better do it in the order you proposed.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I think that the order we proposed will make it easier to digest them.

Presiding Judge: We shall pause for 20 minutes.

State Attorney Bar-Or: With the Court's permission, I have meanwhile prepared the required copies for submission of those documents I did not have time to submit during the first part of the morning session. I shall turn to these now. First, Prosecution document No. 262, of which I said represents an "Organization plan of the Head Office for the Security of the Reich (RSHA)" as it was confirmed at the time by Hoettl and Ohlendorf. It was submitted to the Accused and is part of T/37 under No. 243. The Accused expressed his opinion, his affirmative opinion, on this plan on pages 3011-3015 of the statement. Here are three copies.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/120.

State Attorney Bar-Or: And now Prosecution document No. 1168 which was submitted to the Accused and represents part of T/37 under No. 298. The Accused saw this document and he speaks about it on pages 3420-3424 of his statement. It originates in the Alexandria 4 microfilm. I shall submit three copies.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/121.

State Attorney Bar-Or: The dictation mark is again Ech/D. It is a report of a journey by SS-Hauptscharfuehrer Eichmann, II 112. I shall quote only two short passages:

"According to orders" (writes Eichmann) "I was in Nuremberg from 6 September to 9 September 1937, to get in touch with visiting foreigners." On page 2: "In the evening of 8 September from 21.00 to 22.00 hours, Gauleiter Streicher made a speech to the group of about 100 members of the Weltdienst - World Service - in Hotel Kaiserhof to which I was invited by party-member Wurm, the chief editor of the Stuermer.
And now to Prosecution document No. 84 - it is the SS Member's oath which appears in T/37 under No. 163. It was submitted to the Accused and the Accused speaks about it in his statement on pages 2060-2062. I am submitting the copies.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/122.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This is the text of the oath of a member of the SS:

"I swear loyalty and valour to you, Adolf Hitler, as Fuehrer and Kanzler of the Reich. I vow obedience to you and the superiors you appoint, until death. So help me God."
And now, with the Court's permission, I shall proceed with document 1185 that was submitted to the Accused and appears in T/37 under No. 297. It is a report on the reorganization of the Department under II 1 of the SD Head Office. It is dated 12 December 1937. It was submitted to the Accused and the Accused speaks about it on pages 3416-3420 of his statement. Here are three copies.

Presiding Judge: That will be T/123.

State Attorney Bar-Or: With the Court's permission I shall read several passages from this report. It says here about the Accused's Department II 112 in the period prior to 1 April 1937:

"Real action against the Jewish enemy by Department II 112 started toward the end of 1935. By then the preparatory work had reached a point where a review of the organizations of the Jews in Germany had become possible. This work which took more than a year to complete, could have been concluded in several months, if only it had been divided better, from the start, within the Department. As a result from the former division of work in the Department some were overburdened with day-to-day jobs, while others lacked comprehensive knowledge of the subject.

"Practical contact with the Jews in Germany was at that time almost non-existent because of clumsy tactics of the heads of the Department. In general, the work followed the guidelines of the State Police unit in Berliln, which, of course, had knowledge only of the local organization of the enemy. During the few interrogations that took place at the State Police unit, the men of Department II 112 had no opportunity to be practically involved. They were carried out exclusively by the State Police officers. Political supervision of the Jewish organizations operating in Germany according to State Police standards was of course impossible under the circumstances; there was not even supervision of the activities of the leading Jewish political personalities. This situation lasted until about March, April 1937 (Report from SS- Untersturmfehrer Eichmann)."
And now the section on Department II 112 after 1 April 1937:
"From that time on, all decisions on Jewish matters are taken in close coordination with Department IIA4. By regularly summoning the leading personalities of the Jewish organizations, it is being attempted to direct Jewish policy in such a way that the emigration of Jews, in particular of those without means, will be increased and speeded up."
And on page 3:
"The ultimate aim, as will be set forth in more detail in a report to C" (Commanding Officer Heydrich), "is to concentrate all work on the Jewish question in Germany in the hands of the SD and the Gestapo. Signed: H. (Hagen)."
The Accused confirms the signatures, by initials, on page 3415 of his statement.

And now to Prosecution document No. 2, the report on the journey of SS-Hauptscharfuehrer Eichmann and Oberscharfuehrer Hagen to Palestine-Egypt. It is dated 4 November 1937, was written in Berlin and bears the dictation marks HG/Pi. It was submitted to the Accused and is part of T/37 under number 8. We find the words of the Accused beginning from page 341 of his statement. Here are the three copies. With the Court's permission, I shall only read short passages from this comprehensive report.

Presiding Judge: Who wrote the report, the Accused or Hagen?

State Attorney Bar-Or: It says here Hg and we may assume - in any event formally - that the report was written by Hagen or dictated by him.

Presiding Judge: Was Hagen higher in rank than the Accused?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Yes. In his statement, the Accused says two things. Firstly, that in respect of the division of functions at the SD Head Office, rank was of no importance, but function was. It happened that men with a lower rank were the superiors of men who had a higher rank. Furthermore, the Court will find handwritten corrections in the report and the Accused confirms in his statement that these corrections are in his handwriting. With the Court's permission, I shall read from this report only short passages that have a bearing on our matter.

Presiding Judge: This will be T/124.

State Attorney Bar-Or: On the journey, it says in chapter I:

"The journey, which was made with the Gruppenfuehrer's consent, began on 26 September 1937 at 08:50. The route went through Poland and Rumania. From the port of Constanza, we continued with the steamer 'Romania' on 29 September 1937 at 0:00. Istanbul, Piraeus, Beirut and Haifa were ports of call. We arrived in Haifa on 2 October at 18.00 and met, as arranged in Germany, on the same day and the next day with the DENB* {*Deutsches Nachrichtenbuero - (German News Agency)} representative from Jerusalem, Dr. Reichert.

The ship left Haifa on 3 October and arrived at Alexandria on 4 October at 09.00. On 7 October, the journey was continued by train to Cairo. On the 12th, 13th and 14th, we tried to obtain an entry visa for Palestine, where we wanted to meet Dr. Reichert. The visa was refused, probably because of the disturbances that broke out in Palestine on 15 October. We left Cairo on 9 October at 06.45 by train to Alexandria. As the steamer was delayed by one day, we stayed overnight again at the home of our acquaintance, Henri Arcache, and left Alexandria finally on 20 October at 11.30 with the Italian steamer 'Palestina.' We called at Rhodes on the 21st and at Piraeus on the 22nd. The steamer arrived in Brindisi on 23 October at 23.00 and we had to pass the night there. The journey continued on 24 October at 08.43. On 25 October at 11.20 we crossed the Swiss border, and at 19.00 of the same day the Austrian border at St. Margareten. We reached Lindau at 21.00. The journey continued on 26 October at 06.07, to Munich, where we arrived at 10.00. We arrived at the Berlin-Anhalter station at 23.00."

I proceed to page 31:"...

Presiding Judge: The pages we have are not numbered.

State Attorney Bar-Or: We shall try to obtain for the Court after the Session the serial number of our reprint from which I am reading to make things easier. I read from page 31:

"From the economic point of view, Palestine offers a dreary picture. We were told, for example, that the chief means of payment are bills of exchange which nobody honours, but which are nevertheless transferred as a means of payment, even when they are entirely without value, because protesting the bill is most often without avail. Drafts drawn on the Templar banks are considered the most secure type of money, as these are the only financial institutions that can pay."

"This economic chaos in Palestine is to be attributed chiefly to the fact that the Jews cheat each other, as there are no Aryans around with whom they can do business. Typical of the total ineptitude of the Jews for ordinary economic activity in their own country is the fact that in Jerusalem alone there are said to be 40 banks, thriving on the deception of members of their own race."

I now come to page 33, second paragraph:
"Promotion of the Emigration of Jews from Germany. To further promote the emigration of Jews from Germany, the Jew Polkes proposed to make possible the emigration of 50,000 Jews per year with 1,000 Sterling per head, by means of an increase in the transfer of goods through Paltreu (Palaestina Treuhandstelle der Juden in Deutschland)* {*The German Office of the Ha'avara Company for the transfer of Jewish property from Nazi Germany to Palestine.} and "Nemico" (Near and Middle East Corporation). The goods would be sold in Palestine, Iraq, Turkey and in Peria. Immigration to Palestine would in this case be possible without the special consent of the English Mandatory government since Jews with 1,000 Sterling are considered as so- called capitalists."

"Opinion This plan must be rejected by us for two reasons: (a) It is not our aim to have Jewish capital transferred, but rather, in the first place, to induce Jews without means to emigrate. Second, the aforementioned emigration of 50,000 Jews annually would in the main strengthen Judaism in Palestine, and considering that according to the policy of the Reich the establishment of an independent state of the Jews in Palestine should be prevented, this plan cannot be a subject for discussion.

(b) An Increase in the transfer of goods to the Near and Middle East would mean that these countries would be lost to the German Reich as 'countries supplying foreign currency.'

Furthermore this would strengthen the 'Ha'avara system' (Jewish companies for the transfer of capital of Jews emigrating from Germany), which was nurtured by the Reich Economics Ministry and to which we are opposed."

Judge Halevi: Who is Polkes in whose name he quotes all this?

State Attorney Bar-Or: Polkes was a Jew with whom the Accused says he was in touch.

Judge Halevi: That means a Jew from Palestine?

State Attorney Bar-Or: At that time he was in Palestine.

I now proceed to Prosecution document No. 460. It originates in the German Foreign Ministry reels prepared by Professor Verete. The Accused speaks of this document in his statement on pages 1733-1742. This is a letter from Goering, in his capacity as Commissioner for the Four Year Plan, of 24 January 1939 to the German Minister of the Interior in Berlin. I submit the document in three copies.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/125.

State Attorney Bar-Or: And this is what Goering writes to the Minister of the Interior in Berlin:

"The emigration of the Jews from Germany is to be furthered by all possible means.

In the Ministry of the Interior a Reichszentrale fuer die Juedische Auswanderung is being established, composed of representatives of the departments concerned. It is the task of the Reich Central Office to deal, uniformly for the entire territory of the Reich, with:

1) all measures for the preparation of increased emigration of the Jews, among other things to induce the establishment of a Jewish organization suitable for the uniform preparation of applications for emigration, to take all steps to endure the provision and appropriate use of funds in this country and abroad, and to determine, in coordination (Zusammenarbeit) with the Reich Office (Reichstelle) for Emigration, the suitable countries for the emigration.

2) to direct the emigration, among other things, by giving priority to the emigration of poorer Jews. 3) accelerating the emigration in individual cases ("Einzelfall"), by procuring rapidly and without friction, by means of centralized processing of the application for emigration, the necessary papers and certificates required by the individual emigrant and supervising the implementation of the emigration.

The Chief of the Security Police will take charge of the management of the Reich Centre. He will appoint the responsible officers and organize the operation of the Reich Centre. Reports on the work of the Reich Centre will be regularly forwarded to me. Measures involving decisions of principle require a prior decision on my part.

In addition to the representatives of the departments concerned, Ambassador Eisenlohr will also be appointed to the Committee to be in charge of official international negotiations, and Ministerialdirektor Wohltat to be in charge of the negotiations on the Rublee Plan. Signed: Goering"

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