The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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

Dr. Servatius: In the first declaration, dated 12 June 1947, at the bottom, it says:
"In December 1943, Veesenmayer came to see me at the legation and notified me that, by special order of the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs, he was asked to visit the President of the Slovak State and negotiate with him on further deportations of Slovak Jews."
It then says that Tiso agreed. On page 2, first paragraph at the top, it says:
"In the summer of 1944, as I remember - after having been reminded of it - Veesenmayer asked me in writing to make representations to the Slovak Government, in order to prevent Hungarian Jews from entering Slovak territory."
The second declaration is dated 6 October 1947. On the fifth page, in the middle, it says:
"I can state that deportations of Jews in 1942 took place by order of the Foreign Ministry. I myself received the relevant assignment in 1942. I remember that in the relevant instructions it said that the Slovak Government was being required to deport the Jews found on its territory. I transmitted this wish to Tuka. At the beginning of 1942, some sixty thousand Jews were deported from Slovakia to Poland."
He continues:
"After the 1944 revolt, a further, larger number of Jews was also deported. At that time there were still some thirty thousand Jews here, as I discovered from statistics. This latter expulsion of Jews went through the Commander of the Security Police."
Judge Raveh: Perhaps the Accused can tell us what was his reply to von Thadden's query in January 1945 about the setting up of a refuge for children and the aged under the protection of the Red Cross?

Accused: Your Honour, I no longer remember what my reply was. I could not give an answer on my own initiative; I had to obtain instructions from my Chief of Department. But since - as the text here says - the German legation in Slovakia had already adopted a definitive position, I can well imagine that the instructions I received said "no action to be taken"; that is what today I would imagine to have been the case.

Dr. Servatius: I turn now to the chapter on Hungary. I would first like to submit another diagram.

Witness, was this diagram drawn up in accordance with the information you supplied, and is it accurate?

Accused: Yes, this diagram was also drawn up in accordance with the information I supplied, and it is accurate.

Presiding Judge: I mark this diagram exhibit N/68.

Dr. Servatius: I would first submit document No. 563 - a document not yet presented. It is a communication from the Foreign Ministry, Luther, to the German legation in Budapest, dated August 1942. Re: Treatment of Hungarian Jews in the Reich and in the occupied territories.

Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/69.

Dr. Servatius: At the beginning it says:

"On the basis of notification from your end to the effect that Hungary, according to a statement by an influential source, has shown itself to have no interest in Hungarian Jews living abroad, Jews of Hungarian nationality in the Reich and in the occupied territories are included in the anti-Jewish measures decreed in the meanwhile."
The Hungarian envoy makes a protest, and on page 2 it says:
"I explained to the Hungarian envoy that I would find it difficult to accept his communication, since, in accordance with the wishes of the Fuehrer, it was crucial that we solve the Jewish Question in Europe as soon as possible. I said that, as he no doubt knew, a number of states, such as Slovakia and Croatia, had indicated their agreement to the evacuation of all Jews, and even the French Ggovernment was considering implementation of appropriate measures in the unoccupied zone."
On page 2, point 3, in respect of a statement by Hungary, it says:
"If, however, Hungary were to create problems about including its Jews in the German anti-Jewish measures, it would thereby prevent the German authorities from cleaning up German or occupied areas from elements who, as things stand, must be considered to be wholly unreliable and possessing extremely hostile attitudes."
I shall skip the next passage; at the end it says:
"In this respect the Reich Government, which has in any case accepted the entire burden of implementing all measures as well as their psychological repercussions in the areas concerned, considers that it is entitled to some co-operation."
Attorney General: Without wishing to detract from the guilt of the Foreign Ministry in the annihilation of Jews, I must nevertheless call the Court's attention to the fact that this is a draft - at least, that is what it says on the document - and there is no indication that the document was ever dispatched or received.

Dr. Servatius: That is quite correct. It is true that it bears Luther's signature, that is at the bottom, and there is also an initial with a date, but whether the draft was actually sent in this form is not clear to me.

Next exhibit - T/1137, document No. 1242. This is a communication from the Foreign Ministry to the envoy in Budapest, dated 14 October 1942. It concerns the Jewish Question in Hungary. In the introduction it reads:

"In the meanwhile, I have made an oral presentation to the Hungarian envoy of the points of view contained in the communication of 8 October. The envoy asked that we outline our wishes and proposals in this area without delay, as he was leaving for Budapest on 18 October."
Further down it says:
"I announced that an official demarche would be instituted by us with his government, and for this purpose I would ask for the Hungarian Government to be notified that it is no longer possible to treat Hungarian Jews in the Reich by way of exception."
In the middle of page 2 it says:
"The problem of treatment of the Jews in Hungary itself appears to be more difficult, but also more urgent. I therefore request that the Hungarian Government be informed of the reasons which motivate us, in accordance with the wishes of the Fuehrer, to strive towards an early and complete solution of the Jewish Question in Europe, and that the Hungarian Government be asked to proceed, for its part, with the requisite measures."
On page 3 it says: "The goal in Hungary must therefore be: 1. To exclude Jews from economic life; 2. Marking; 3. To prepare the expulsion and the deportation to the East."

Next exhibit - T/1139, document No. 972. The Foreign Ministry - Klingenfuss - informs Eichmann on 7 December 1942 on the situation of Jewish affairs in Hungary: legislation and current status.

The next exhibit I would like to discuss is T/1145, document No. 1021. This is a communication from Ambassador Veesenmayer to the Foreign Ministry, dated 19 March 1944. In it he reports that he has been instructed to replace Ambassador von Jagow in Budapest. Jagow has been recalled, and has taken his leave of the Regent "after informing him of my appointment as Reich Plenipotentiary and Ambassador."

Under 3 it says:

"I subsequently spent three quarters of an hour on my own with the Regent, to whom I introduced myself and whom I informed, that I had been instructed to set up the new government with him. The general atmosphere of this conversation with the Regent was a positive one."
Next exhibit - T/1155, document No. 813, dated 20 March 1944. This is headed "Attendance List"; it is the outcome of a consultation, and the names of those present are not given. It says here "that Security Police IVB4 is provisionally installed in the Hotel Astoria," and then at the end it says, "for reassurance it had been stated to the Central Jewish Council in Budapest - everything is to remain calm," and at the end, there is the main point which leads me to refer to this document: "Authority over the Jewish Religious Community of Pest is to be wielded exclusively by the Commander of Security Police IVB4, SS Sturmbannfuehrer and Oberregierungsrat Trenker." Before that it says: "In case of complaints, refer to Krumey and Wisliceny."

Witness, can you explain why you are not listed in this document?

Accused: The Senior Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service had under his authority various Commanders of the Security Police and the Security Service. In the case of Budapest, the responsible commander was the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service, Obersturmbannfuehrer and Oberregierungsrat Trenker. I was not a commander in Hungary; I had a operations unit, and so I had no authority in the various areas of command, unless authorization was granted by the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service.

Presiding Judge: And why is this reference made here to IVB4 for Trenker?

Accused: Because both the Commanders of the State Police and the regional headquarters of the State Police had a section with a corresponding department, or Section IVB4. It all corresponded. That is to say, the Head Office for Reich Security and the subordinate institutions. These sections were not directly under the control of the Head Office for Reich Security: They were under the independent chiefs of the departments - in this case, the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service.

Presiding Judge: Was that also true of Hungary, that after you made your appearance there, in addition to your operations unit, there was another department there - a Section IVB4 under the Commander of the Security Service?

Accused: Yes, indeed. This IVB4 existed not only under the Commander, making it his office, his, but also under the Commander of the Security Police and the Security Service in Budapest.

Dr. Servatius: I submit as evidence document No. 1124 - communication from the office of the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs, signed by Envoy Ritter - or Ambassador Ritter - to Reich Plenipotentiary Veesenmayer, dated 31 March 1944.

Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/70.

Dr. Servatius: This reads:

"For the Reich Plenipotentiary only: The Reich Minister has learned that Obergruppenfuehrer Kaltenbrunner intends to be in Budapest within the next two weeks. The Reich Minister would ask you in this connection to report confidentially to the Reich Minister personally on the assignments which Mr. Kaltenbrunner has been given and carries out, apart from General Winkelmann who is subordinate to you." (General Winkelmann is the Higher SS and Police Leader.) "Is he personally dealing with arrangements for the Jewish Question, or with other special matters? As previously, the Reich Minister is still concerned that the Security Service might try to interfere with the duties for which you are responsible and with your authority, and would ask you to pay particular attention to ensuring that this does not happen." Signed: Ritter.
I would like to submit another exhibit - document No. 372. This is a communication from Veesenmayer to Ambassador Ritter, that is, for the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs, dated 14 April 1944. In the introduction it says:
"In a discussion yesterday, Sztojay gave me a firm promise that by the end of April Hungary would make at least fifty thousand able-bodied Jews available to the Reich. Practical measures have already been started by the action initiated on the part of the Security Service and the Hungarian police."
In the last sentence it says:
"As a result of these arrangements and other actions already planned, it should be possible in May to make a further fifty thousand labour Jews available to the Reich, and at the same time to increase to 100,000, up to 150,000, the number of Jews concentrated in labour batallions in Hungary." Signed: Veesenmayer.
Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/71.

Dr. Servatius: I submit a further exhibit, document No. 216, not yet submitted. This is a notification by the Foreign Ministry, von Thadden, to Veesenmayer, dated 20 April 1944. Contents: "Ordering of railway carriages and timetable to be arranged by Eichmann's Section - as soon as final instructions are received from Obergruppenfuehrer Kaltenbrunner."

Presiding Judge: I mark this exhibit N/72.

Accused: May I add some additional clarification?

Dr. Servatius: Please do.

Accused: This exhibit N/72 is dated 20 April 1944. It is preceded by a communication from Veesenmayer to Ambassador Ritter, to Ribbentrop's office, document No. 675, dated 15 April 1944. There, in the last paragraph, it says:

"Shall agree on deportation details with Obergruppenfuehrer Winkelmann, and may make another report on this. However, request immdediatly urgent instructions as to where in the Reich transport is to be sent. Veesenmayer."
Dr. Servatius: The exhibit to which the Accused is referring is document No. 675. I now submit it as evidence. It is a communication from Veesenmayer, dated 15 April, to Ambassador Ritter, that is, to Ribbentrop's office.

The next section reads:

"In reply to my demand made to Premier Sztojay, and accepted by him, that by the end of this month fifty thousand Jews be made available for labour in Germany, today I received notification from the Honved Ministry that five thousand Jews will be made available immediately, and then every three to four days a further five thousand will be provided, until the figure of fifty thousand is attained."
The last paragraph reads:
"Shall agree on deportation details with Obergruppenfuehrer Winkelmann, and may make another report on this. However, request as of now urgent instructions as to where in the Reich transport is to be sent." Signed: Veesenmayer.
Presiding Judge: This exhibit is marked N/73.

Dr. Servatius: Next exhibit - T/1182, document No. 366. A communication from the Foreign Ministry, von Thadden, to the office of Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ribbentrop, dated 22 April 1944. It reads as follows:

"Finalized information from the Head Office for Reich Security to the effect that the fifty thousand Jews will be deported from Hungary for labour in closed camps. Deportation, particularly timetable and ordering of railway carriages, will be dealt with by the Head Office for Reich Security. Obersturmbannfuehrer Eichmann, who is himself in Hungary, is receiving all the necessary instructions today from the Head Office for Reich Security. Written notification to the Foreign Ministry will be dispatched today."
The next exhibit...

Presiding Judge: Dr. Servatius, could we interrupt the proceedings here and adjourn?

Dr. Servatius: Yes.

Presiding Judge: Tomorrow the Session will start with the submission of the depositions received from abroad, insofar as these are testimonies of witnesses who are to be considered as Prosecution witnesses. We shall then continue with the examination-in-chief of the Accused.

The next Session will be tomorrow morning at 8.30.

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