The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 79
(Part 5 of 5)

Dr. Servatius: Not the order, but whether you could sign the order, as it says here. The order shall be signed by the Chief of Department IV, or by a specially empowered representative - were you such a representative?

Accused: If it was a question of passing on an order issued by a superior authority and signing such a transmission of an order, the answer is yes. Any Specialist Officer - obviously after consultation with his principal - was authorized so to act, and document Nos. 1254 and 1255, which are not to be dealt with here, show this very clearly, since they are orders for execution issued by the Reichfuehrer- SS and Chief of the German Police, and these went to the local station through the official channels, that is, through Section IVB4. I would like to be allowed to explain these documents in more detail.

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, do you wish to refer to these exhibits or not? I obviously leave this up to you, as it is your duty to direct the Accused, and not the other way round.

Dr. Servatius: He should comment on the documents.

Presiding Judge: First of all, what are the numbers, the references of these exhibits?

Accused: Document Nos 1254 and 1255.

Presiding Judge: I am told that they are T/200 and T/201.

Accused: Both telegrams show from the "reference" that there had previously been a report of the Zichenau State Police Station. In the report, the local State Police station asked Berlin for authorization to execute the Jews whose names are listed. The text of the telegram sent in reply shows that this request from the State Police station passed through official channels to the Reichfuehrer-SS and Chief of the German Police, since in each telegram it says, "By order of the Reichfuehrer-SS and Chief of the German Police, the special treatment proposed against the Jews is to be carried out," while in the other telegram it says, "The Reichfuehrer-SS and Chief of the German Police has given orders that the Jews listed in the report mentioned above be hanged in the presence of their fellows by race."

Both these telegrams are signed by me. These are orders from the Reichfuehrer-SS and Chief of the German Police which came directly from him to Section IVB4 through the official channels, via the Head of the Security Police and the Security Service and the Chief of Department IV, with instructions that the State Police station be notified accordingly of Himmler's order. In the document...

Dr. Servatius: Witness, I think that we can leave the topic for the moment; we shall return to these matters later.

Accused: All right.

Dr. Servatius: I now turn to an exhibit which I omitted some eight to ten documents ago. This is T/1280, document No. 175. Directives on general affairs affecting the country. These are directives from the Economic- Administrative Head Office, dated 23 March 1944, Chief of Department D 1.

Right at the beginning of the section on "General Correspondence," there is a noteworthy point. Under point 1, it says: "In principle it is prohibited to communicate directly in writing with the Head Office for Reich Security or the Reich Criminal Police Headquarters." Point 2: "It is also prohibited to make applications for executions directly to the Head Office for Reich Security or the Reichfuehrer- SS." Further on it says: "Report after implementation can be made directly to the authority which gave the order."

However, after implementation the main notification is to be made here, that is, to the Economic-Administrative Head Office. The provision to which the Accused has already referred today is on page 2. Under the section on "Transfers of Prisoners," it reads: "Transfers to other camps, particularly at Stage III, should not be applied for at the Head Office for Reich Security or the Reich Office of Criminal Police. In principle, transfers can only be authorized from here."

Under "Escape of Prisoners," under point 2, it says that, when prisoners are recaptured, applications for execution must be reported to the Reichfuehrer-SS. Then, under "Deaths," it is mentioned that deaths of Poles who are not on the German population records, and of Russians, are notified by most camps to the Head Office for Reich Security or the Reich Criminal Police Headquarters. This is prohibited under existing orders. On page 3, under "Punishments," it says that it is not admissible to obtain permission for police punishment from the Head Office for Reich Security.

Accused: May I interrupt? It should be "Pruegel-Strafen" (corporal punishment), not police punishment.

Dr. Servatius: I would correct what I said - in the document it only says "P-Strafen."

The last comment on the exhibit concerns so-called "N-N" prisoners - "Nacht- und Nebelhaeftlinge" (night and fog prisoners). This matter is also to be submitted to the authority in question.

I shall omit another document, No. 1174, which does not yet have a T number, and I come to a new chapter, the "Lidice Children." First, there is exhibit T/1091, document No. 865. This is a communication from the Race and Resettlement Head Office, dated 12 June 1942, to the Migration Office in Litzmannstadt, Krumey. The communication is from the Head Office for Race Affairs and is signed SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Bichler. The contents concern eighty-six Czech children who cannot be Germanized and who have remained alive after the executions in Lidice, and who have been transported from Prague to Litzmannstadt by the Bohemia and Moravia Race and Resettlement Head Office. A list giving the names of ninety- one children is attached to the communication, and on page 1, two children have been deleted, since they have been removed as being able to be Germanized. Then there is a note to the first page of the list, probably meaning that 11, 14 and 40 are missing, as they are able to be Ge

rmanized. The names are ticked off on the list. The next exhibit is T/1092 - document No. 866. On 17 June 1942, the Migration Office in Litzmannstadt - Krumey - asks the two Commanders of the Security Police and the SD Office what is to happen to these eighty-eight children. The last sentence asks that IVB4 be asked to indicate what should happen to the children.

The next exhibit is T/1093, document No. 867. On 20 June 1942, Krumey applies directly to Eichmann and asks for provision to be made for the children.

Exhibit T/1094 - 868 - two days later, on 22 June 1942, Krumey applies to the Head Office for Reich Security, Section IIID4 - Dr. Ehrlich - and states that he has already informed IVB4 as well. He says that he addressed himself to them, in the assumption that the children were to receive special treatment.

The next exhibit, 1089, comes later - I shall omit it for the time being - and I turn now to T/1095. This is an acknowledgment, dated 2 July, 1942. The text reads as follows: "...on the basis of a telegram, dated 2 July 1942, from the Head Office for Reich Security, eighty-one Czech children from the Gneisenaustrasse Camp handed over to the Litzmannstadt Secret State Police Station." Again a list of children is attached; they are now eighty-one. A previous communication showed that seven children had again been removed as being able to be Germanized. On the last page of the document, there is a list concerning the children's departure from the Gneisenaustrasse Camp.

The next exhibit, T/1096 - document No. 936 - is a ommunication from the Head of the Bohemia and Moravia Branch Office of the Head Office for Reich Security, dated 4 July 1942, to the Litzmannstadt Migration Office, Krumey. This is a notification of a transport of another twelve children who are not able to be Germanized, plus six who are able to be Germanized - a total of eighteen children.

The next exhibit is T/1097, document No. 937. This is a communication from the Prague Branch Office of the Race and Resettlement Head Office, dated 6 July 1942, to the Litzmannstadt Migration Office, Krumey. The communication contains a notification that these twelve children are being transferred on orders of SS Gruppenfuehrer Frank, in agreement with the Head Office for Reich Security, to the Litzmannstadt Migration Office. The last page contains a list of the children's names and an acknowledgment that the children were collected by the Litzmannstadt Gestapo on 25 July 1942.

Exhibit T/1098, document No. 938. A communication dated 9 July 1942 to Section IVB4, Eichmann, enquiry with a request for instructions as to what to do with these twelve children.

Now exhibit T/1099, document No. 939. Telegram IVB4, signed by Guenther, dated 14 July 1942. Contents: The children are to be immediately transferred to the Litzmannstadt Gestapo. Sheet 2 of the exhibit: another acknowledgment that the children have been received, 25 July. It states that the twelve children were to be handed over for further accommodation. At the beginning mention is made of a telegram, Decree No. 123, 613, which is not the same number as the telegram of 14 July 1942, which is stapled to that document.

Witness, would you state what you know of this matter.

Accused: I know nothing at all of this matter and can say nothing about it from my own knowledge. However, from studying the files I have seen that this is another instance to which I did not react at all personally.

The first time my name appeared on a telegram was 20 June 1942, and the first time that my Section reacted was twenty- four days later, that is, on 14 July 1942, when there was a signature "on behalf of," signed Guenther. According to the Office Organization Plan, Section IVB4 was not responsible for these matters: Within Department IV, another Section in Group IVD was responsible for the Protectorate of Bohemia, Moravia and Czechs in the area of the Reich. However, since Krumey had written in vain to all possible authorities in the Head Office for Reich Security, and also the Commander of the Security Police in Prague, to try and clarify the matter, I have the impression that this application to Guenther is another one of those special assignments which he was given.

If I had been responsible, I should at least have given Krumey an interim acknowledgment of his telegram of 20 June 1942, and would not have waited twenty-four days. However, this did not happen, which again proves to me that this was a special assignment. In this context, I gather from Counsel for the Defence that documents about the Lidice matter are on the way, which will probably shed light on the matter and clear it up once and for all.

Presiding Judge: That is the second time that we have heard that the fact that some matter was not dealt with for some time proves that you did not deal with it. Do you mean to imply that you were more efficient than other officials in the same office?

Accused: No, Your Honour, I am not implying that; but if it takes that long, then, as far as I am concerned, that proves to me that there was a lack of clarity as far as competence goes, and there had first to be negotiations with the departmental chief for the matter to be dealt with, which it could not do so until the question of competence was clarified. And it took some time to get things clear, whilst, if competence had been clearly assigned right from the outset, there could have been a reaction through the normal channels.

Presiding Judge: You may be seated.

Dr. Servatius: The exhibit to which the Accused is referring is said to have been submitted when evidence was taken [abroad] and was appended to the record. I am not yet familiar with the exhibit.

Presiding Judge: I assume that something which is unknown to you is also necessarily unknown to the Accused.

Dr. Servatius: He does not know the content, but is generally familiar with it. I have been told by my assistant that this is apparently a significant document which will shed some light on the matter.

Presiding Judge: Very well, I understand now.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, a few days ago I received a letter from Bremen in which a female witness wrote that she knew that these children were in a convent until the arrival of the Russians. I have made enquiries, first of all in order to ascertain whether this lady is a reliable witness. I may have to ask for further evidence to be taken. I have asked for her to make a sworn affidavit before a notary public on the matter, so that I can provisionally submit it to the Court.

Presiding Judge: Very well.

Dr. Servatius: I now come to a new section. Compulsory transfer (Aussiedlung) from the Generalgouvernement. First of all, exhibit T/251, document No. 1253. This is a letter from the Director General of the Eastern Railways, abbreviated to Gedob, dated 28 July 1942, to SS Obergruppenfuehrer Wolff, on Himmler's personal staff. Notification is given of the transport from 22 July onwards, of five thousand Jews per day from Warsaw to Treblinka, as well as a train of five thousand twice a week from Przemysl to Belzec.

In the last paragraph, the Director General of the Eastern Railways says that the trains were arranged with the Commander of the Security Police in the Generalgouvernement. Also, the SS and Police Leader of Lublin, Globocnik, is notified. I believe that this indicates that the Generalgouvernement dealt with the matter on its own, without the Head Office for Reich Security.

The next exhibit is T/261, document No. 1114. Together with this, there is the next exhibit, T/260, document No. 1113. It is advisable to read the second document first, as an introduction. This is a report from the Border Police Commander, dated 27 July 1942, and concerns a first communication dated 23 August 1942, about a dispute between the Border Police and the local commander of the Armed Forces about the removal of Jews. It should be noted that in this dispute the Head office for Reich Security is not involved, but instead, the local branches take issue with the OKW (Army Supreme Command).

The next exhibit is T/263, document No. 1531 - a list of the SS Leaders of the Head Office for Reich Security working in the Generalgouvernement. The list is undated.

I believe that we can deduce from this that these SS Leaders are not subordinate to the Head Office for Reich Security, but are in the Generalgouvernement and are subordinate to the commanders there.

Accused: May I make a supplementary comment on this?

Dr. Servatius: Witness, can you comment on this?

Accused: Yes. The Prosecution had ascertained that Burger, Otto and Liska, Walter, who are named in the list, were to some extent my subordinates. I would like to clarify the situation. As far as Liska, Walter is concerned, there seems here to have been a confusion of names with a member of the SS called Lischka. This Lischka was my predecessor in Department IV, that is, actually in Section IVB4, and on 14 October 1939, he was still in charge of II, the Reich Central Office. But then Lischka left the Head Office for Reich Security and turns up later with the Commander of the Security Police and Security Service, in France. He was not subordinate to me.

As for the second person named, Burger, Otto, this Burger does not seem to be the same one as the Burger who, I think, was also active in Hungary, for example, and somehow there is a reference to him also in the southeast. I believe that this Burger had a totally different first name.

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, have we come to the end of a subject?

Dr. Servatius: Yes, indeed, I am now coming to the Department for the Strengthening of German Folkdom in this context.

Presiding Judge: All right. I also want to check on something in respect of our future sessions. Can we agree that from Thursday onwards we shall be able to go back to having afternoon sessions again? We have reduced our working hours for your convenience, but I have the impression that, in the meanwhile, you have managed to catch up and go over the exhibits, so that we can return to having afternoon sessions.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, I believe that appearances are not real: I have not been able to catch up, but the number of exhibits which I have had to deal with has diminished, and I have used the convenience of the arrangements to the extent that I have had to take advantage of the time when there are no sessions to do more work - it really is impossible for me to proceed under any other arrangement.

Presiding Judge: Well, it really does look as if appearances are not real, and for your convenience we shall continue with the current arrangements.

Dr. Servatius: Thank you very much.

Presiding Judge: The Court will recess until tomorrow morning at 8:30.

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