The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 48
(Part 3 of 8)

State Attorney Bach: Our next document is No. 1228. The Accused writes to Rademacher: He has heard that there were Jews emigrating from Romania via Hungary, Croatia and Italy. Since these are precisely the well-to-do Jews, there is a danger that in the end only the main body of destitute Jews will be left in Romania. And he says:
"In the interest of the smooth implementation of the planning for the Final Solution of the Jewish Question in Europe, I request you to prevent this development through all suitable measures. Please inform me on the situation at your convenience." Signed: Eichmann.
Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1016.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is No. 531. Richter writes to Lecca, objecting to the fact that a Jew by the name of Fritz Kaufmann is still working in a leading position with a certain firm, and he was not only a Jew but was also married to a Jewess from Istanbul.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1017.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is No. 469. Here, statistics about the Jews of Romania are transmitted to Richter by the head of the research department of the Central Office of Statistics of Romania.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1018.

State Attorney Bach: And in the next document, our No. 526, Richter transmits this statistical information, which he received in the preceding document to Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann - "Population Census of 6 April 1941 - The Jewish Population in Romania."

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1019.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is our No. 574. Suhr from Eichmann's office informs Richter about Zionist activities for illegal emigration to Palestine and asks him to check these rumours, to investigate and report.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1020.

Is there a Hebrew translation of this document, because it is very difficult to read the original?

State Attorney Bach: Yes, there is a Hebrew translation.

Presiding Judge: We received only one copy. Do you have additional copies?

State Attorney Bach: I have a translation, but all sorts of remarks are written on it. I may be able to provide the Court with these translations during the intermission.

Now, Your Honours, I have reached the three central documents concerning the chapter of the Jews of Romania. The first document is our No. 181, which was shown to the Accused and numbered T/37(130). This document was written in Section IVB4, signed by Mueller, and sent to the German Foreign Ministry. It says that, starting approximately on 10 September 1942, the Jews from Romania are also to be sent in special trains towards the east. In the first instance, those Jews are to be sent who are fit for work. He asks that this be noted, and he assumes that also on the part of the German Foreign Ministry, there is no objection to these measures.

I draw the attention of the Court to the date: This letter was written on 26 July 1942, and it speaks of Jews who are fit for work and who are to be deported from Romania from 10 September onward.

Presiding Judge: Signed: Mueller.

State Attorney Bach: Signed Mueller. The Accused was asked about this document, and he admitted that it was he who drafted the document and dictated it. His comments begin on page 1068 of his statement, and at the bottom of page 1772 he was asked who drafted this letter. His reply:

"I drafted this letter and I dictated it, this is clear, is it not, it says here IVB4 and this went to Luther; Mueller signed. I dictated the letter."
Presiding Judge: When it says "IVB4" without an additional letter, that means he dictated it himself?

State Attorney Bach: He personally dictated this letter.

The next document is No. 561. From the office of the Reichsfuehrer-SS a letter is sent to the personal office, the personal staff of the Reichsfuehrer, enclosing a letter which was also sent on 26 July 1942 from the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service, and it also says that the Reichsfuehrer-SS asks that this be brought to the attention of the Reich Foreign Minister. We see here that on the same day the letter to the Reichsfuehrer-SS from the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service was also written, and he asks that this be brought to the attention of the Foreign Ministry, among others.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1022.

State Attorney Bach: Now, Your Honours, what was that letter written to the Reichsfuehrer-SS on that day, 26 July? This we learn from the next document, No. 562, which was shown to the Accused and marked T/37(177). Here is an internal note of the German Foreign Ministry. They have now received the copy of the letter to the Reichsfuehrer-SS, and it says here that this is a report to the Reichsfuehrer-SS of 26 July, and here also the subject is the expulsion of the Jews, on 10 September as the intended starting date, to the Lublin district, where "...der arbeitsfaehige Teil arbeitseinsatzmaessig angesetzt wird, der Rest der Sonderbehandlung unterzogen werden soll. Es ist Vorsorge getroffen, dass diesen Juden nach Ueberschreiten der rumaenischen Grenze die Staatsangehoerigkeit verloren geht" (...those who are fit will be put to work, while the rest is to undergo the special treatment. It has been arranged that these Jews will lose their Romanian citizenship after crossing the Romanian border).

At the end, there is further information for the Reichsfuehrer-SS. Firstly, that negotiations have already been held with the Reich Ministry of Transport, and besides, that, in accordance with an order from the Head Office for Reich Security, SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Richter has been in direct contact with Mihai Antonescu and has received a letter from him which confirms the concurrence of the Romanian Government. And he encloses this letter.

Thus the Court will realize that two different versions were sent on the same day from the same office - one to the German Foreign Ministry, in which there is mention only of fit people who are able to work, and one to the Reichsfuehrer-SS, in which there is mention of "special treatment" for those who are unable to work. Only through an error, apparently in the office of the Reichsfuehrer-SS, they were not aware of this, of this attempted camouflage, and they routinely sent a copy of this also to the German Foreign Ministry. And, therefore, we have seen both letters side by side, because we obtained the archives of the German Foreign Ministry, which included both versions of the letters which went out on the same day.

The Accused was interrogated about this document also, starting on page 2218 of his statement. On page 2220 he explains that this was really a report, a summary from IVB4 to the Reichsfuehrer-SS about what they were able to do in this matter. And then, on page 2221, he was asked what was the meaning here of Sonderbehandlung. Was the meaning that all those who could not work would automatically have to be given the "special treatment"? And he said: "Yes, I have already said so." And then he said that that person, the special representative in the Head Office for Reich Security, was Richter, "my man, who dealt with this matter."

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1023.

Judge Halevi: Who signature is this - Rintelen?

State Attorney Bach: Rintelen belonged to the German Foreign Ministry at that time; he sent this report to Luther, amongst others. He was a kind of roving ambassador, and he appears in many places.

Presiding Judge: What does "Feldmark" mean? Is this Ribbentrop's train?

State Attorney Bach: That was Sonderzug Westfalen (Special Train Westphalia). Feldmark was, if I remember rightly, Ribbentrop's headquarters during a certain period.

The next document is our No. 850. Here the German Foreign Ministry informs Eichmann that it has no objection to the inclusion of the Jews of Romania in the framework of the measures against the Jews. He mentions Lecca's visit to Berlin and says: "Then the matter will be discussed with him without binding us."

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/1024.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is our No. 470. Here Richter again reports to the Accused about the law which was published in Romania on Jews in labour service. This will no longer be called Arbeitsdienst (Labour Service), which is too respectable an expression for that kind of labour. He encloses the law.

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/1025.

State Attorney Bach: I proceed to our document No. 570. Richter reports to the Accused by telegram saying that in accordance with a suggestion by the Adviser - i.e., Richter - the Zionist organizations in Romania have been dissolved by order of Government Commissioner Lecca to the Central Board of the Jews, dated 7 August 1942.

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/1026.

State Attorney Bach: I pass on to our document No. 403. This is also a report about co-operation between the German Foreign Ministry, the Head Office for Reich Security, and Lecca, in carrying out the deportations. The beginning of the deportations from the districts of Arad and others are mentioned in particular. It is also mentioned that the Adviser of the Romanian Government for Jewish Questions - Lecca - has asked, through the intermediary of the German legation, to be allowed to go to Berlin, in order to negotiate details of the deportation of the Jews from Romania with the Head Office for Reich Security.

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/1027.

State Attorney Bach: I proceed to our document No. 1348. Here Rademacher transmits an invitation from the Accused to Richter in Bucharest. Richter is invited to a meeting in Section IVB4 in Berlin on 28 August 1942. The Court will remember this meeting, which I have already mentioned in connection with the representatives in France and Holland, who were also invited and who reported about it. Not only the invitation for that date is important here, but also the hand-written remark at the end of the document, which says: "The study day, in which mainly heads of the Department for Jewish Affairs inside Germany will take part, will deal with technical questions of camp administration and will consist almost exclusively of two inspections accompanied by suitable instructions."

Presiding Judge: This will be exhibit T/1028.

Is it known which camps are referred to?

State Attorney Bach: We did not know which camps. There are several possibilities of camps that are not too far from Berlin, but we do not know which camps they were going to visit. One can only guess the nature of the camps, since it is a matter of the specialists for Jewish Questions from the various countries and from the Stapostellen of Germany.

I go on to our document No. 178. It is von Killinger's reaction to a letter which we do not have, a letter which he apparently received from the German Foreign Ministry after the two versions were received in the ministry - the letter which was addressed to the ministry and the information sent to Himmler, from which is was apparent that Richter arranged the whole thing with Antonescu. Killinger writes to the German Foreign Ministry that he cannot understand how they could think that he would leave the treatment of this matter in the hands of an SS officer alone. "Mr. Mihai Antonescu may write as many letters as he likes, this makes no difference to me." And he says that, of course, everything was done under his direction.

He also says, by the way, that when Lecca went to Berlin without prior co-ordination with him, he was not received by the officials of the German Foreign Ministry, but only by the officials of the Head Office for Reich Security, and he was really angry and offended. Such a thing is not done!

Then he says: "I have now written a letter to the Romanian Government." From this letter it transpires that the steps taken so far were only preparatory, and that only now will he begin the real negotiations. I draw your attention to paragraphs 7 and 8 of the letter. In paragraph 7 he requests that in future matters of this kind be dealt with in a different manner.

And in paragraph 8: "In addition I should like to point out that all letters to SS Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann were sent through the German Foreign Ministry, so that the ministry was informed about what was going on. That Mr. Eichmann naturally did not think it necessary to get in touch with the German Foreign Ministry does not surprise me at all, since I am sufficiently familiar with the methods of the gentlemen of the SS. Moreover, I should like to point out that everything I report to Department Germany reaches the Security Service."

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, the Presiding Judge, I should like to remark that during the quick perusal one passage may have been neglected, a passage which has special importance for determining the nature of the Service and the responsibility. In paragraph 3, on page 1, it says: "The Adviser on Jewish Affairs did the preliminary work in accordance with my instructions." It is obvious that this means on the orders of the person who issued them, and therefore not on the independent initiative of the Accused.

State Attorney Bach: I think that I emphasized this very passage, and it shows, precisely in this context, that obviously Killinger did not even know about the letter which Richter received from Antonescu; Killinger himself indicates the meaning of the same passage.

Presiding Judge: I also see that in this letter Killinger complains when he says: "Ich bedauere dass der Herr Reichsaussenminister meine Gegenargumente...nicht erfaehrt" (I regret that the Reich Foreign Minister is not being informed of my counter-arguments), and somebody wrote a note here underneath the letter. Was this Rademacher or Luther?

State Attorney Bach: This is Luther's signature.

Presiding Judge: "I regret that Minister von Killinger apparently does not want to understand."

State Attorney Bach: What we have here, so it seems to me, is very clear from the four letters I have submitted, i.e., a feud between the two offices, a complete by-passing of Killinger by Richter, on instructions from Eichmann.

Presiding Judge: But Luther does not support Killinger?

State Attorney Bach: They must have reprimanded him. This seems obvious from his reply to the letter of 17 August.

Presiding Judge: This will be marked T/1029.

State Attorney Bach: We can now imagine Killinger's state of mind when he has to send the next cable, our No. 215, in which he has to inform the German Foreign Ministry that Lecca invited Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann, at the time of his visit to Berlin in August, to visit Romania, that Antonescu has agreed to this visit, and that Lecca requests Eichmann to come in January 1943.

Presiding Judge: This document will be marked T/1030.

State Attorney Bach: With the permission of the Court, I should now like to submit three documents together, because they refer to the same subject and could be given a joint number, since they are interconnected. They are our numbers 989, 990, and 991. Here Killinger complains again and says that IVB4 has directly informed the Adviser for Jewish Affairs at the embassy - in other words, Richter - that the property of former German Jews in Romania may remain in Romania, and that the German Government does not claim this property for itself. This is actually the application of the "territorial principle" to Romania, a principle we have already encountered, where the property of German Jews who are deported - in this case from Romania - may remain in Romania. And Killinger asks: What about this letter? Was this true, and what should he do about the matter?

The subject of document No. 990 is the internal procedure within the German Foreign Ministry; Rademacher reports to Luther. I direct your attention specifically to the hand- written remark on the left side of the document, where it is explained who Suhr is - "a specialist for Jewish questions abroad under Eichmann." This is actually only a matter of information, and there is no question of principle involved; they only wanted to receive an explanation.

Nevertheless, we find in document No. 991 that Klingenfuss writes to Eichmann informing him that Suhr has written such a letter directly to Richter, and asking him to transmit in future all questions of principle to foreign countries via the Foreign Ministry.

Presiding Judge: The three documents together will be marked T/1031.

State Attorney Bach: The next document is our No. 194, which here has been marked T/37(131). This document is being submitted in order to show the channels of communication, again between Richter and the Accused. Killinger informs the Foreign Ministry that he has written to the Romanian Government, and then Richter informs Eichmann that such a letter has indeed been written and transmits its contents. He (Killinger) adds: "On the basis of the conversation between the head of the Romanian Transport Administration and the representative of the German Reich Railways in Bucharest, no difficulties are to be expected with the implementation of the transports, once the date of the deportation has been fixed.

Presiding Judge: The document will be marked T/1032.

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