The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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

Holocaust, Adolf Eichmann, Eichmann trial, holocaust, Jewish holocaust
I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1513: A letter from Dannecker G II 112 of 16 May 1938 to SS-Untersturmfuehrer Burmeister. The document appears in the volume of documents from Alexandria, Washington, which I have already submitted, under No. 1513.

Presiding Judge:: This document has been marked T/134.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This letter from Dannecker confirms the instructions given by telephone on the same day, 16 May 1938, namely that all matters concerning Department II 112 in Austria have been discussed on 14 and 16 May with SS- Untersturmfuehrer Eichmann.

I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1511, which is a report by the Accused found in a file of the SD Head Office. It is contained in that collection of documents received from Washington. I marked it with a slip of paper: 1511.

Presiding Judge:: This document has been marked T/135.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I do not intend to read this letter from Eichmann. I shall confine myself to drawing attention to the fact that it deals with the special arrangements that had to be made to obtain foreign exchange to make possible the forced emigration of precisely the poorer classes of the Austrian population. At the end of the letter, the last paragraph reads:

"It was also agreed that the foreign currency service in Vienna will cooperate closely with the SD Section Austria in the matter of Jewish emigration, and that emigration applications from Jews will be dealt with by the foreign currency office only if they bear the counter-signature of the Division, Signed: Eichmann, SS-Untersturmfuehrer."
I now pass on to Prosecution document No.72. This is a cable signed by SS-Sturmbannfuehrer Vollheim. The cable was sent to the Chief of the Security Head Office, Department II 112, Berlin. I submit a photostatic copy of this document; on its original the Court received the affidavit from Mr. Wiesenthal through Mr. Bar-Shalom.

Presiding Judge:: This document has been marked T/136.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This cable is dated 11 November 1938; it is one of the first cables that reports on the events of the Crystal Night and it mentions that in Vienna alone 42 synagogues were in most cases entirely destroyed and six burnt down completely. The cable states that on 11 November fires are still burning in some of the buildings. The cable also mentioned that mass arrests of Jews began in the afternoon of the same day.

Judge Halevi: This cable refers to a previous cable of 10 November, apparently an incoming one.

State Attorney Bar-Or: We know, Your Honour, of a cable received from Heydrich. It says here: "Vorg. dortr. Blitz FS vom 10.11.38 Nr. 47767" (Your reference: Telegraphic message of 10.11.38 No. 47767). There is no doubt that this refers to a cable sent by Heydrich to the entire SD Main Division in connection with the operations that should be started. We have a document that we even submitted to the Accused: the Accused speaks about it but we could not get sufficient authentification for it. The Accused does not say himself: "Correct, I saw this." We only have a copy of this document.

Judge Halevi: That means that these acts of violence were committed upon orders from a superior?

State Attorney Bar-Or: There is no doubt about that. I shall submit to the Court several other documents connected with the events of Crystal Night which will show that these were not spontaneous acts, but well-organized ones.

Presiding Judge:: Do we know who sent the cable of 10 November?

State Attorney Bar-Or: That cable I cannot...

Presiding Judge:: It could also be a demand to report on what happened.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I already submitted today to the Honourable Court a document in which Heydrich reports first of all to Goering. Thereafter, Heydrich talks about these things at the meeting of 10 November at the Air Ministry. Heyrdrich was able to add up numbers of synagogues, of shops that were destroyed, from the reports he had received upon his demand. That is the picture.

I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 69, also a cable sent from Linz. It was sent to the "SS-Fuehrer des SS- Oberabschnittes Donau, Wien" (SD Head of the SS Main Section Danube, Vienna): "Urgent. To submit immediately. Re: Operation against Jews." This cable too, is a reply to a cable received in Linz from Vienna on 11 November 1938. The authenticity of the document is also based on Mr. Wiesenthal's affidavit.

Presiding Judge:: This document has been marked T/137.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This cable describes in general what happened in Linz during Crystal Night. I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 85, likewise authenticated by Mr. Wiesenthal's affidavit. It is signed by Fast, SS- Untersturmfuehrer in Innsbruck on 12 November 1938. He reports on the events of Crystal Night and the first days thereafter in his region.

Presiding Judge:: This document has been marked T/138.

State Attorney Bar-Or: With the Court's permission, I shall draw attention in particular to the fact that here it is clearly evident that the violence was planned in advance. Here are detailed the preparatory activities for the perpetration of violence in Innsbruck and surroundings on the Crystal Night. It says here on page 2:

"The general SS was charged with the following aims and persons:

(1) The synagogues in the Street of Sudenten Germans.

(2) The Jewish properties at 4 Gaensbacherstrasse (Graubart) and 5 Gaensbacherstrasse (Bauer & Schwartz). (We have a document that gives information that this was a Jew who was killed that same day).

(3) The Head of the Jewish community, Dr. Berger Richard, + 13 Anischstrasse."

Here too, on the original, the Court will find the mark + . We shall find a report that also this Jew was killed in the acts of violence, that night.

"The Sub Section Tyrol participated in the operation only to the extent that Jewish material, of importance to the SD, was secured. SD members did not commit acts of violence against Jewish persons or property.

Already during the discussion at the Gauleiter's office, I instructed the members of the SD Sub-Section Tirol by order to wear plain clothes and to be on the alert at the office. Then, at 3.30, the action began, upon my orders:

1) Support of the measures taken by the State Police,

2) Securing the material of the Jewish community. The material is now at the office of the SD Sub-Section Tirol.

Fast, SS-Untersturmfehrer."

State Attorney Bar-Or: I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 784, a photostatic copy of notes or minutes.

Presiding Judge:: One of these looks as if it is from another document; the third page is typed more closely.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I can account for this only in one of two ways. We shall find that sometimes one document was typed on different typewriters, apparently to speed up the typing. Another possibility is that the photocopy was made thirteen years ago. One can assume that the photocopies did not always make the same enlargements of each page.

Presiding Judge:: It is close type.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Evidently they used two typewriters.

Presiding Judge:: But are you sure that it is part of the document?

State Attorney Bar-Or: I have an affidavit from the person who furnished the document.

Presiding Judge:: In that form?

State Attorney Bar-Or: In that form. He says that the American authorities in Vienna prepared at the time in 1946, at his request, photostatic copies of the various documents he was interested in. He, in fact researched the events of Crystal Night.

Presiding Judge:: I see, indeed, that the same sentence continues.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I was indeed just going to say that the continuation of the text fits in very naturally.

Presiding Judge:: All right. I am sorry. It seems to be a quotation: that is why it is closely typed.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I now pass on to a memorandum in the SD files in Vienna. We received this memorandum too through Wiesenthal's affidavit. It is a file memorandum, written in Vienna on 15 November 1938, marked Ech/L. It deals with the increased withdrawals of cash from banks by Jews. I shall submit a photostatic copy with additional copies.

Presiding Judge:: This will be T/139.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This prohibits the withdrawal from Jewish accounts of amounts exceeding 400 Schilling per month. Any larger withdrawal requires a permit by the Emigration Centre. At the end it says: "The withdrawal of larger amounts requires the approval of the Central Office for Jewish Emigration, which provided the foreign exchange unit with the necessary reference for final approval."

Judge Halevi: Is Schilling and Reichsmark the same thing? It says here "Reichsmark."

State Attorney Bar-Or: The original reads "Reichsmark." I am sorry, it must be "Reichsmark."

I come now to Prosecution document No. 89, which we also received through Mr. Wiesenthal. It is a report by SD Fuehrer des SS-Oberabschnittes Steiermark (SD Commander of the SS Main Section of Steiermark - Styria), acting also under the marks II 112, dated 23 November 1938 and it deals with the violence against the Jews. He also refers to the telephone conversation of 11 November 1938, on the 12th, and so on. I shall submit the photostatic copy with the copies.

The report gives details of the acts of violence against the Jews in the Steiermark (Styria) region on Crystal Night and discussed their consequences. I shall quote only a small part.

Presiding Judge:: Mr. Bar-Or, this is impossible. The document is in front of us. We can read it, and if there is something particularly important for you in it - there will yet be a summing-up in this trial.

State Attorney Bar-Or: In truth, I was convinced - and I think my colleagues are of the same opinion - that it would be possible to be very brief in the summing-up, in the end, if we give general explanations and a general picture of the material that is being submitted.

Presiding Judge:: We shall consider the matter and give you a final general guideline on the matter.

State Attorney Bar-Or: There is one thing we should not like to do, Your Honour. We should not like to arrange, so to speak, the submission of the material now this way and then the other way. If we can get a general guideline for the whole course of the trial, that would be very convenient for us.

I proceed now to Prosecution document No. 1514, which we also received from the Archives in Alexandria, near Washington. It is a cable from the SD Donau (Danube) addressed to the SD Head Office, to SS-Obersturmfuehrer Hagen in Berlin, with the addition: "Please submit also to SS-Obersturmfuehrer Eichmann." We shall submit it. This too speaks of the activity and the control of the Accused over the special funds in foreign currency he had to raise for the purpose of the mass emigration of Austrian Jews.

I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1129, a letter from Heinrich Stahl, the Chairman of the Jewish Community in Berlin of 1 March 1939 to the Jewish Community in Vienna.

This copy comes from the documents of Dr. Loewenherz which were given to Zidon, as he specifies in his affidavit which was submitted to the Court.

Presiding Judge:: That will be T/142.

State Attorney Bar-Or: The notable fact about this letter is that it is a letter of apology by Stahl to the Jewish Community in Vienna on the way he reacted to the activities of the Emigration Centre in Vienna when he made his visit there, about which we heard yesterday. The interesting point is that the letter was delivered, as it appears here, to Dr. Loewenherz not by mail and not by Stahl, but through Eichmann. Stahl gave it to Eichmann and Eichmann gave it to Loewenherz in Vienna.

Presiding Judge:: There are two documents here: one is the letter, the other - a file memorandum.

We shall mark the memo with T/143.

State Attorney Bar-Or: This is a memorandum on Dr. Loewenherz' discussion with Eichmann on 9 March 1939. There are only two passages to which I would like to draw attention:

(1)"SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann delivered a letter dated 1 March 1939 from the Chairman of the Jewish Community in Berlin, Mr. Heinrich Stahl.

(4) SS-5Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann expressed his readiness to allow the transfer of Herzl's remains to Palestine, provided that on that occasion the responsible Jewish organizations would provide possibilities for the immigration of 8,000 persons from Austria, and commissioned the undersigned to carry out the required negotiations thereon, during their stay abroad."

The memorandum, like many others I shall submit, is signed by Dr. Rothenberg, the Director of the Palestine Office in Vienna and Dr. Loewenherz, the Head of the Jewish Community.

I now pass on to Prosecution Document No.1130. This is also a file memorandum signed by Dr. Loewenherz, which we received through Zidon. It is dated 17 April 1939.

Presiding Judge:: I mark this as exhibit T/144.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Conversation between Eichmann and Loewenherz in the presence of Dr. Gruen and Berthold Storfer. I draw attention to section 4 of the report:

"Considering that, as countervalue for the first 1,000 Pound Sterling transferred to the Jewish Agency on account of the poll-tax, the Head of the Community and of the Palestine Office agreed on an amount of RM 30 per Pound Sterling, later increased by the Central Office for Jewish Emigration to RM 47.50 - a rate which the Palestine Office cannot bear - SS-Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann agreed that for the first 1,000 Pounds RM 30 will be charged and for the second RM 47.50. SS- Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann pointed out at this juncture that the Keren Hayessod and Keren Kayemet, monies should also be part of the arrangement, because permission for their work in Austria had been given in the expectation that they would contribute to the promotion of emigration from Austria."
Your Honours, I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1131.

Presiding Judge:: Are you nearing the end of the Austrian documents, or are there more?

State Attorney Bar-Or: There are more, but I can stop here.

Presiding Judge:: How much time will it take?

State Attorney Bar-Or: The Austrian file will take a few minutes, and thereafter I propose to bring the remaining witnesses.

Presiding Judge:: If it takes only minutes, let us finish the submission of the documents.

State Attorney Bar-Or: Document No. 1131 is a memorandum by Dr. Loewenherz on a meeting with Eichmann in the presence of Dr. Gren, on 28 April 1939.

Presiding Judge:: This will be Exhibit T/145.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I draw attention to the second section on page 2 paragraph 7:

"SS-Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann gave permission to submit, starting from 2 May 1939, every day 45 passport applications for prisoners in Buchenwald and 30 for prisoners in Dachau. These applications are to be treated separately and not on account (zaehlen nicht auf) of the normal quota of daily applications."
I proceed with Prosecution document No. 1132, in the handwriting of Emil Engel, dated 30 May 1939.

Presiding Judge:: This will be Exhibit T/146.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I draw the Court's attention mainly to page 2 of this memorandum, where the "total number of Communities that no longer exist " is indicated.

I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1133, which is a notice from the Jewish Community in Vienna dated 29 June 1939, to the board of management (Amtsdirektion) of the Community, to the attention of Dr. Loewenherz.

Presiding Judge:: That will be Exhibit T/147.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, may I point out, to avoid confusion, that this Brunner is not a member of the SS but an administrative officer with the Reich Commission for the Department of Propaganda. That was an arrangement for the transfer of property, which had to be sequestered for the time being.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I agree with Counsel for the Defence; one should add that at the time he was not a member of the SS but an administrative officer.

Presiding Judge:: You say that this is the same man?

State Attorney Bar-Or: We shall come across him once more.

Presiding Judge:: Is that the same Alois Brunner?

State Attorney Bar-Or: No this refers to a man by the name of Anton Brunner. At that time he did not belong to the SS- Staff - on this I agree with Counsel for the Defence.

The notice says in short:

"In accordance with today's talks at the office of SS- Hauptsturmfuehrer Eichmann and Property Attachment Commissioner Brunner, I was instructed to inform the management of the office that the communities in the provinces are no longer allowed to sell real estate and land belonging to the communities, to make agreements and sign agreements."
I come now to Prosecution document No. 1134, a memorandum by Dr. Loewenherz. I see that it was submitted to the Accused and I apologize; by this afternoon I shall prepare the copies.

I now pass on to Prosecution document No. 1135 - a memorandum by Dr. Loewenherz on his talk with Obersturmfuehrer 3Guenther on 10 October 1939.

Presiding Judge:: That will be Exhibit T/148.

State Attorney Bar-Or: I draw the Court's attention to the first section: "I have to notify Mr. Storfer, Dr. Murmelstein, Dr. Gruen and Boschan that they are to travel on Friday"...

Presiding Judge:: Could you tell us the contents and not read it?

State Attorney Bar-Or: The document deals with the first preparations in Austria for the first transport to Niska, and we find that this transport was coordinated in Maehrisch- Ostrau (Ostrav) which is mentioned here. (Some of the Jews that were in Niska came from Vienna and some from Maehrisch- Ostrau).

This memorandum deals with the preparations that had to be made in Vienna for the transport to Nisko. It is dated 10 October 1939.

I now pass on to the last document, No. 783. It is a report by Dr. Loeenherz. It was submitted to the Accused and I shall, therefore, have to prepare three additional copies.

There are thus two documents left which I shall have to submit to the Court during the afternoon session.

Presiding Judge:: We shall stop here, the Session will continue at 3.30 p.m.

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