The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of Adolf Eichmann
Session 84
(Part 4 of 6)

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/623, document No. 964. Communication from the Foreign Ministry, Wagner, to Mueller, dated 14 December 1943, about a discussion between Bosshammer, Dannecker and von Thadden. The result of the discussion can be seen in the middle of page 2. It reads: "Having regard to the lack of zeal shown in recent months by the Italian authorities for implementing the anti-Jewish measures ordered by the Duce, the Foreign Ministry considers as urgently desirable that the implementation of the measures against the Jews should be continuously supervised by German officials from now on.

It would therefore appear expedient and necessary for part of the personnel currently serving with the Special Operations Unit for Italy to be incorporated into the Italian apparatus, under the guise of advisers. The Special Operations Unit for Italy should therefore be notified accordingly, and Hauptsturmfuehrer Dannecker should be asked immediately to contact the Reich Plenipotentiary, Ambassador Rahn, or his representative, with regard to such possible incorporation of advisers."

The next exhibit is T/617, document No. 299. A memorandum drawn up by Ambassador Wagner of the Foreign Ministry on 22 October 1943. It concerns the attitude of the Italians in the so-called recently-occupied areas in Southern France. This topic was dealt with generally under France. Here I shall refer to one or two documents only. By way of introduction it says here:

"On 16 October 1943, Legation Councillor von Thadden, in accordance with instructions, went to see Gruppenfuehrer Mueller about the technical implementation of the Jewish Question in the recently- occupied areas, and indicated that, after the experience in Denmark, the Foreign Ministry was particularly interested in ensuring that action against Jews in other areas would be carried out with sufficient means and sufficient preparation, in order to avoid as far as possible serious political complications."
It goes on to say: "With regard to various countries, Gruppenfuehrer Mueller made the following points," and on the last page, under Italy: "He did not belittle the argument of the Foreign Ministry here in particular, especially in view of the fact that the position of the Catholic Church speaks in favour of action at one sudden blow." Then it says: "However, available personnel is not sufficient for carrying out such an action throughout Italy. Therefore, necessarily, a start will have to be made in putting the Jewish Question on the agenda directly behind the front line, and then the cleaning-up operation will be pursued gradually northwards."


Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, if it is convenient for you, we shall now recess. Twenty minutes recess. [Recess]

Presiding Judge: Please proceed, Dr. Servatius.

Dr. Servatius: I should first like to hand in the two documents I submitted earlier. They have no T number as yet. One was police document No. 149, and the other was No. 195.

Presiding Judge: That has already been marked, and I shall return your copies to you later. They were N/59 and N/60. Prosecution document No. 149 is N/59 and No. 195 is N/60.

Dr. Servatius: I come now to document No. 726, not yet presented, and I submit the document. This is a communication from Ambassador Schleier in Paris to the Foreign Ministry, dated 23 January 1943. It concerns the Jews in the area still occupied by the Italians, and at the end it reads:

"However, there is agreement between the embassy and the Security Police that it will only be possible to thoroughly clean up the Jewish Question in the new area of occupation, if we manage to bring the Italians round to our way of thinking about anti-Jewish measures."
Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/62.

Dr. Servatius: I should like to submit another document, No. 456, as evidence. This is a communication from Ambassador Mackensen in Rome to the Reich Foreign Ministry, dated 18 March 1943, on his intervention concerning the Jews in the area of France occupied by the Italians. In the first line it reads: "Assignment with the Duce carried out this evening." On page 2 it says: "He asked me - that is to say, the Duce asked me - to thank the Reich Foreign Minister," and then he went on to make detailed observations which are summarized as follows: "Our basic attitude with regard to the absolute need for drastic measures against both the Jews and the British and American persons still present in the occupied areas, was crystal clear and imperatively necessary."

Presiding Judge: I mark this N/63.

Dr. Servatius: This brings me to the end of the Italian chapter. However, I should like to ask how evidence is to be taken now. For example, Kappler's testimony - how is this to be included in the proceedings, and when will it be dealt with?

Presiding Judge: As far as I know, the record of this testimony has not yet been received here.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, this is really a question of principle - how are the results of the testimonies taken to be introduced as evidence? Are they to be considered as evidence called by the Court, since the Court also requested them to be taken, or are they to be presented by the Prosecution or the Defence?

Presiding Judge: The witnesses are the witnesses of the Prosecution or the Defence, so that for witnesses whose statements were submitted by the Prosecution, the oral testimony is considered to be a supplement to those statements. As for those witnesses from whom the Prosecution has not submitted any statement, these are considered to be witnesses for the Defence.

Let us take this Kappler, for example: As far as I remember, the Prosecution did not submit any statement or declaration by this witness, and so he is to be considered a witness for the Defence, whose testimony was taken abroad. Once the record of his testimony is received here, it will become part of the evidence for the Defence, and the representatives of the parties may then request that those parts of the testimony which are of importance for them be read out in Court.

Dr. Servatius: I see. The only question is when such parts should be read out. Would it be convenient to deal with these witnesses together after the end of the examinations, so that both sides could ask the Accused any questions they have in direct relation to these depositions, or is there some other suggestion?

Presiding Judge: Would the Attorney General care to comment on this matter?

Attorney General: If it please the Court, I wish to suggest that the documents first be numbered, so that we can somehow refer to them.

Presiding Judge: Which documents?

Attorney General: The documents sent from abroad, the evidence taken abroad on commission. As for testimony taken as a result of Prosecution evidence, I think Counsel for the Defence is right when he wishes to find a way for putting questions to the Accused with regard to such testimony. After all, if such testimony had been taken here, then it would already be before the Court at the end of the case for the Prosecution. He can, therefore, definitely refer to it and ask questions about it.

On the other hand, the witnesses for the Defence would not, in the ordinary way, be heard until after the Accused is examined. It is only by chance, where testimony has been taken abroad and not given before this Court, that such testimony is in the file. I do not believe that there is any procedure under which the Accused can be called to the stand again as standard practice without special authorization, in order to react to the testimony of witnesses he has called in his defence.

Consequently, I do not think that Counsel for the Defence can, when questioning the Accused, rely on these depositions, as he has suggested, that is to say on witnesses whom he has called. Thus I would distinguish between these two sets of witnesses.

Judge Halevi: Perhaps, before we make any such distinction, I could point out that it is not usual to ask one witness, even the Accused as a witness, what he thinks about the testimony of another witness. Each testimony stands by itself.

Attorney General: I understood that Counsel for the Defence wishes to question the Accused about what the witnesses have said as a result of statements by them which we have, and this he is entitled to do.

Judge Halevi: He can ask directly, without referring to a particular person's testimony about the matter.

Attorney General: But in my opinion he cannot in any way do so as regards his own witnesses. It is pure chance that these testimonies are already available to him.

Presiding Judge: But as my Honourable Colleague has pointed out, the testimony is based on facts. And he can always refer to these facts which have been mentioned, even those which are in the testimony which either by chance - as my colleague has said - or in the circumstances of the case have reached him earlier. What happens in other criminal proceedings? In other criminal proceedings, too, Counsel for the Defence generally knows what his Defence witnesses are going to say, and he directs his examination of the Accused accordingly.

Attorney General: Of course.

Presiding Judge: Very well. Dr. Servatius, do you wish to add anything? Then we will see what is to be done.

Dr. Servatius: It is my opinion that the special nature of these hearings abroad dictates a special deviation from the norm, in order to allow the Accused to give his reaction. If there is something special to be said about the depositions, how is that to be done? Probably not as witness testimony but as a statement regarding the facts.

Presiding Judge: With regard to testimony resulting from the submission of statements by the Prosecution, we shall somehow include these in our record at the first opportunity, as the Attorney General has proposed. We can do this tomorrow morning. That will mean that these testimonies will be submitted formally, and then, at that time, both sides will be able to refer to those passages in these testimonies which are important to them. As far as I remember, the only missing testimony is that by Hoettl from Austria. We already have Becher's testimony. I would, therefore, ask you to go through these testimonies by way of preparation for tomorrow morning, in order to refer to those passages which you would like to have read into the record. Naturally these depositions in their entirety are part of the record.

Attorney General: At what stage does the Court wish to do this?

Presiding Judge: Tomorrow morning. As the Attorney General has already pointed out - it was you who made the point, Mr. Hausner, quite rightly - this is a supplement to testimony already given. We shall do this at the first available opportunity. To do so, we shall interrupt the direct examination of the Accused.

With regard to testimonies taken abroad by a witness for the Defence, these will be formally submitted at the end of the Accused's testimony. However, Dr. Servatius may first ask the Accused questions arising from these testimonies which are actually known to him. I do not believe that this will give rise to any practical difficulties. He can refer to the facts mentioned in such testimonies and question the Accused about such facts. Let us take a practical example. We have not yet received Kappler's testimony, but if we had, Counsel for the Defence could say: "Kappler testifies to this or that fact: As Accused, what do you have to say about that?" I see no objection to that.

Dr. Servatius: Certainly that is a practical procedure. As long as the Accused is still on the stand, I shall introduce these depositions as documents.

Presiding Judge: I made a distinction here. These depositions are not documents either, but rather records of testimonies, and so it is of no importance for the purpose of examining the Accused, whether they have been previously submitted or not.

Dr. Servatius: Your Honour, it is really a formal question. How are these depositions to be included in the record?

Presiding Judge: Where witnesses for the Defence are concerned - Kappler, Novak, Slawik - if these witnesses had appeared before the Court, they would have given their testimony after the Accused, and therefore, instead of hearing them here in Court, their testimonies will be formally submitted at the appropriate stage. But that does not prevent you from making any appropriate reference to the content of these testimonies prior to their submission, just as if you had already heard statements by these witnesses in your chambers, so that you already know what the witness is going to say, and now you ask the Accused questions about the statements by the witness which are known to you in advance. Is that clear to you now?

Dr. Servatius: That is quite clear. Just one last question. These depositions must at some stage be included in the proceedings. Is this to happen after the examination? When and how will this be dealt with?

Presiding Judge: Apparently the translation is not clear. We shall divide these testimonies into two parts. Testimonies which complete the evidence of Prosecution witnesses will be submitted tomorrow - as far as they are available - apart from the testimony of Hoettl, which has not yet arrived. As for witnesses for the Defence, these will be submitted formally after the Accused completes his evidence. The reason is that we wish to make these proceedings, to the extent possible, similar to proceedings in which all witnesses would have given their evidence viva voce before the Court.

Dr. Servatius: Yes, I shall proceed accordingly.

Presiding Judge: In that case you may now continue. I gather that you are now going to deal with the chapter on Slovakia?

Dr. Servatius: Yes, I now come to the chapter on Slovakia. I would like first to submit a diagram.

Witness, is this diagram drawn according to the information you supplied, and is it correct?

Accused: Yes, it is drawn according to my information, and it is correct.

Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/64.

Dr. Servatius: The first document I wish to present here has not yet been submitted, document No. 1266. This is a communication from Ambassador von Killinger to the Foreign Ministry, dated 25 September 1940. It states that, according to the estimates of highly-placed Slovak officials, there are some ninety thousand Jews in Slovakia.

The measures against Jews adopted after the independent state was established have not caused migration, since the Jews did not believe that these were serious measures and in the prevailing circumstances emigration was impossible, since other European states would not accept the Jews. At the end it reads: "Material about total Jewish assets in Slovakia is currently being collected by the Slovak authorities and will be submitted later."

Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/65.

Dr. Servatius: The next exhibit is T/1075, document No. 1267. This reads: "To the Foreign Ministry, Berlin." It indicates that the Adviser on Jewish Affairs, Wisliceny, and an Adviser on Social Policy, Smagor, are to visit the Jewish Labour Camp in Upper Silesia, together with a representative of the Hlinka Guard - here it says H.G. The legation is very much in favour of the visit.

Next exhibit, T/1076, document No. 1268. Ambassador Ludin reports to the Foreign Ministry on 22 October 1941 that the Slovak Ministry of the Interior has made arrangements for Jews to be settled together at certain points in Slovakia, and for the capital to be evacuated. At the end it says: "These measures mean the setting up of ghettos according to the model in the Generalgouvernement, as proposed by the German Adviser.

Next exhibit, T/1077, document No. 1269. This is a communication from Wisliceny to the German legation, dated 24 January 1942. "I enclose a schematic representation of the assets and property of the Jews of the above-mentioned nationality." The reference at the top of the letter indicates precisely which Jews are meant.

Witness, what did your Section have to do with recording assets, and were you also concerned with the matter on which Wisliceny is reporting here?

Accused: As to whether Wisliceny was instructed by the Head Office for Reich Security to deal with these matters, or whether he dealt with them in accordance with the instructions of the head of his mission, I have no idea today. This file does not give any indication about it either.

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