Wisliceny, one of Eichmann’s men, , at Nuremberg:
“I was talking to Eichmann in his office in Berlin when he said that on written order of Himmler all Jews were to be exterminated. I requested to be shown the order. He took a file from the safe and showed me a top secret document with a red border, indicating immediate action. It was addressed jointly to the Chief of the Security Police and SD and to the Inspector of Concentration Camps. The letter read substantially as follows :
“The Fuehrer has decided that the final solution of the Jewish question is to start immediately. I designate the Chief of the Security Police and SD and the Inspector of Concentration Camps as responsible for the execution of this order. The particulars of the program are to be agreed upon by the Chief of the Security Police and SD and the Inspector of Concentration Camps. I am to be informed currently as to the execution of this order”.
“The order was signed by Himmler and was dated some time in April 1942. Eichmann told me that the words “final solution” meant the biological extermination of the Jewish race, but that for the time being able-bodied Jews were to be spared and employed in industry to meet current requirements. I was so much impressed with this document which gave Eichmann authority to kill millions of people that I said at the time : “May God forbid that our enemies should ever do anything similar to the German people”. He replied : “Don’t be sentimental-this is a Fuehrer order”. I realized at that time. that the order was a death warrant for millions of people and that the power to execute this order was in Eichmann’s hands subject to approval of Heydrich and later Kaltenbrunner. The program of extermination was already under way and continued until late 1944. There was no change in the program during Kaltenbrunner’s administration. ”
Franz Novak was finally arrested in 1961 and sentenced to jail, but on appeal he was acquitted and set free. (another early release Nazi, Eichmann’s man)
Another: Following the appeal of the Office, opened a new lawsuit between 1968 and 1969, as result Krumey was sentenced to perpetuate the 29 August 1969. The sentence was void by an appeal in 1973.
Krumey died of natural causes in his nineties.
*one of the absolute worst nazis
ONE of Eichmann’s men gives testimony on the Holocaust at Nuremberg:
WARNING: DISTURBING TOPIC BELOW
COPY OF AFFIDAVIT C
[Affidavit of Dieter Wisliceny]
Source: Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression. Volume VIII. USGPO, Washington, 1946/pp.606-619.
[This affidavit is substantially the same as the testimony given by Wisliceny on direct examination before the International Military Tribunal at Nurnberg, 3 January 1946.]
I, Dieter Wisliceny, being duly sworn, declare:
1. I am 34 years old and have been a member of the NSDAP since 1933 and a member of the SS since July 1934. I have been Hauptsturmfuehrer SS since 1940. From 1934 to 1937, I was assigned in Berlin and from 1937 to 1940 in Danzig. From 1940 to September 1944, I was assigned as specialist on Jewish matters in Slovakia and my mission included service in Hungary and Greece. I have known Adolph Eichmann, the former Chief of AMT IV A 4 of the Reichsicherheitshauptamt (RSHA) well since 1934 in which year we joined the Sicherheitsdienst (SD). Our relationship was so close that we addressed each other with the intimate” Du”. We served together from 1934 to 1937 in Berlin and maintained friendly relations from 1937 until 1940 when he was in Vienna and I was in Danzig. Eichmann’s mission in Vienna was to direct the Central Office for Jewish Emigration and he later came to Berlin with the RSHA to take charge of AMT IV A 4 which was responsible for the solution of the Jewish question and for all church matters. At Eichmann’s suggestion, I accepted an assignment as expert for AMT IV A 4 in Slovakia dealing solely with the Jewish question.
2. There were three distinct periods of activity affecting the Jews. The first period covered the time from 1937 when the Jewish Section was founded till 1940, during which the policy was to accelerate and compel Jewish emigration from Germany and Austria. Because of this, the Central Office for Jewish Emigration was founded in Vienna and later on a corresponding institution in Prague. After the victory over France, Madagascar was contemplated, but never used, as a site for the emigration. The second period during 1940 and 1941 covered the concentration of Jews in Poland and eastern territories, in Ghettos and concentration camps. The last period, from beginning 1942 to October 1944, covered the evacuation of Jews from all Germany and German controlled territories to concentration camps and their biological annihilation.
3. I first became interested in the number of Jews effected by measures taken through the RSHA when I met other specialists on Jewish matters in Eichmann’s office in Berlin. It was customary for Eichmann to call the specialists in for a meeting at least once a year, usually in November. Meetings were hold in 1940, 1941, 1942 and 1943. I was present at all but the latter meeting. In these meetings each representative reported on conditions in his territory and Eichmann discussed the over-all picture. He particularly stressed total figures and the use of charts which included the number of Jews in different countries, their occupations, their age groups, and statements showing the portion of Jews to the total population of each country. These charts did not include the number of persons effected by evacuation and extermination activities since these figures were kept secret. However, from many discussions with Eichmann and specialists on the Jewish question, I learned the effects of the program of final solution in each of the countries concerned.
4. I was sent to Berlin in July or August 1942 in connection with the status of Jews from Slovakia, which mission is referred to more fully hereinafter. I was talking to Eichmann in his office in Berlin when he said that on written order of Himmler all Jews were to be exterminated. I requested to be shown the order. He took a file from the safe and showed me a top secret document with a red border, indicating immediate action. It was addressed jointly to the Chief of the Security Police and SD and to the Inspector of Concentration Camps. The letter read substantially as follows :
“The Fuehrer has decided that the final solution of the Jewish question is to start immediately. I designate the Chief of the Security Police and SD and the Inspector of Concentration Camps as responsible for the execution of this order. The particulars of the program are to be agreed upon by the Chief of the Security Police and SD and the Inspector of Concentration Camps. I am to be informed currently as to the execution of this order”.
The order was signed by Himmler and was dated some time in April 1942. Eichmann told me that the words “final solution” meant the biological extermination of the Jewish race, but that for the time being able-bodied Jews were to be spared and employed in industry to meet current requirements. I was so much impressed with this document which gave Eichmann authority to kill millions of people that I said at the time : “May God forbid that our enemies should ever do anything similar to the German people”. He replied : “Don’t be sentimental-this is a Fuehrer order”. I realized at that time. that the order was a death warrant for millions of people and that the power to execute this order was in Eichmann’s hands subject to approval of Heydrich and later Kaltenbrunner. The program of extermination was already under way and continued until late 1944. There was no change in the program during Kaltenbrunner’s administration.
5. After my meeting with Eichmann in July or August 1942, when I first learned of the Hitler order for final solution of the Jewish question by extermination, I became particularly interested in the number of persons effected and at every opportunity made notes on the basis of information from other countries. In 1943, my interest was further accentuated by requests for information from the Joint Distribution Committee and I thereafter took particular pains to collect all information available as to the number of Jews effected in other countries. In Budapest 1944 I conferred with Dr. Rudolf Kastner, representative of the Joint Distribution Committee, and compared with him information on numerous occasions particularly dealing with the total number of Jews effected. I was constantly in touch with Dr. Kastner after May 1944. I last saw him on 30 March 1945, in my apartment in Vienna.
6. On numerous occasions Eichmann told me that Jews had no value as except as laborers and that only 20-25 percent were able to work I was present in Budapest in June or July 1944 at a meeting between Eichmann and Hoess, Commandant of Auschwitz concentration camp, at which they talked specifically about the percentage of Hungarian Jews that would be strong enough for labor. On the basis of transports previously received at Auschwitz and the supply of Jews inspected by him in collection centers, Hoess stated that only 20 or at the most 25 percent of these Hungarian Jews could be used for labor. Hoess said that this percentage also pertained to all Jews transported to Auschwitz from all over German occupied Europe, with the exception of Greek Jews who were of such poor quality that Eichmann and Hoess said that all Jews unfit for labor were liquidated. Among the able-bodied were women and some children over the age of 12 or 13 years. Both Eichmann and Hoess said that all Jews unfit for labor were liquidated.
7. All exterminations of Jews took place in closed camps. The camps at Auschwitz and Maidenek were referred to as extermination camps “A” and “M” respectively. I know that Jews at Auschwitz and other extermination camps were killed with gas, starting at least as early as the spring of 1942. Eichmann said that in the cases of groups from which the able-bodied had already been selected, the remainder were gassed immediately upon their arrival at the concentration camps. In cases, where there was no prior selection, the screening had to take place at the concentration camps before the unfit were gassed. The inspections at concentration camps to determine who was considered able-bodied and who was to be executed were very superficial.
8. Late in 1944, Himmler directed that all executions of Jews were to cease, but Eichmann did not carry out this order until he received a written directive signed by Himmler. Unaccountable thousands of Jews who had been sent to concentration camps died of epidemics and undernourishment, such as in the camps at Flossenbrueck and Sachsenhausen.
9. In appendix A-l, I have prepared a chart of the organization of RSHA in 1944 to show the relative position of AMT IV A 4 and its subsections. In the same exhibit, I have listed the experts on the Jewish problem who served in a capacity similar to my own in other countries. Their names and assignments were:
Hauptsturmfuehrer Dr. Seidl (Theresienstadt)
Hauptsturmfuehrer Wisliceny (Slovakia)
Hauptsturmfuehrer Abromeit (Croatia)
Hauptsturmfuehrer Dannecker (Bulgaria)
Hauptsturmfuehrer Brunner (France)
Obersturmbannfuehrer Krumey (Lodz-later Vienna)
Hauptsturmfuehrer Burger (Theresienstadt-later Athens)
I have also shown members of the staff in Eichmann’s office that includes Hauptsturmfuehrer Franz Novak who had charge of all transportation matters concerning all evacuations of Jews and Untersturmfuehrer Hartenberger who was a specialist on individual cases. To my personal knowledge, based on my observations during several years service in the Balkan countries and close association with leaders in these countries who were responsible for actions taken against the Jews, the number of Jews effected were approximately: 66,000 in Slovakia ; 60,000 in Greece ; 8,000 in Bulgaria ; 3,000 in Croatia and 500,000 in Hungary. In Appendix A-III I have set forth details as to their disposition.
10. I consider Eichmann’s character and personality important factors in carrying out measures against the Jews. He was personally a cowardly man who went to great pains to protect himself from responsibility. He never made a move without approval from higher authority and was extremely careful to keep files and records establishing the responsibility of Himmler, Heydrich and later Kaltenbrunner. I have examined many of the files in his office and knew his secretary very well and I was particularly impressed with the exactness with which he maintained files and records dealing with all matters in his department. Every move taken by Eichmann in executing measures against the Jews was submitted to Heydrich and later to Kaltenbrunner for approval. I have seen signed duplicate copies of Eichmann’s reports to Himmler. These all went through the Chief of RSHA, Heydrich and later Kaltenbrunner, who signed them. Signed duplicate copies of these reports bearing the name of Kaltenbrunner were filed by Eichmann. The regular channel was from Eichmann through Mueller to Kaltenbrunner and to Himmler. Eichmann was very cynical in his attitude toward the Jewish question. He gave no indication of any human feeling toward these people. He was not immoral, he was amoral and completely ice-cold in his attitude. He said to me on the occasion of our last meeting in February 1945, at which time we were discussing our fates upon losing the war: “I laugh when I jump into the grave because of the feeling that I have killed 5,000,000 Jews. That gives me great satisfaction and gratification.”
11. According to Eichmann, he knew Kaltenbrunner from Linz and they had been good friends for many years. They were both members of the illegal Nazi Party in Austria and were together in Vienna from 1938 to 1940. I know that their good relations continued to at least February 1945. Eichmann told me more than once that whenever he had any difficulties he took them up with Kaltenbrunner. When Kaltenbrunner was appointed as Chief of the RSHA, Eichmann told me that his standing would be improved in the department because of his close connections with Kaltenbrunner. Their friendship appeared to be very strong because I myself, in February 1945 witnessed a short meeting between Kaltenbrunner and Eichmann. They met in the vestibule of the office house of Eichmann, Kurfuersten Str. 116, Kaltenbrunner greeted Eichmann heartily and asked about the health of Eichmann’s father and family in Linz.
12. My mission in Slovakia was to advise the Slovak government on all Jewish questions, I was instructed to establish good relations with the Slovak government and consider my work as a diplomatic mission. I was assigned for administrative purposes to the German Legation at Bratislava and reported to Minister von Killinger, later to Minister Ludin. Copies of these reports were sent to Eichmann to whom I regularly sent confidential SD reports.
13. In 1941 when I visited the concentration area Sosnowitz where approximately 100,000 Jews were used as slavelabor. in large factories making uniforms and furniture, I was accompanied by a Slovak mission which was interested in establishing similar concentration labor projects in Slovakia. We found conditions not favorable but bearable. Thereafter two concentration work areas were established in Slovakia at Sered and Novaky where about 4,000 Jews, who had been removed from their individual shops and business and were forced to labor in factories and joiner’s workshops. These work centers continued to operate until the insurrection in September 1944.
14. In March and April 1942, 17,000 specially selected Jews were sent to Lubin and Auschwitz, Poland, as construction workers and in May and June 1942, approximately 35,000 members of their families were sent to Auschwitz, at the request of the Slovak government since no provision had been made to support these families. At the request of the Slovak government, I went to Berlin in late July or August 1942, to obtain permission for a Slovak commission to visit these Jews in the area of Lublin. Eichmann speaking of the 35,000 in the second group, told me that such a mission would be, impossible and that “The Slovaks won’t be able to see their Jews any more because they are no longer alive”.
15. In September 1944, there remained about 25,000 Jews in SIovakia. Some of these joined in the insurrection at that time. SS Hauptsturmfuehrer Brunner who had been sent to Slovakia from Paris in August 1944 pursuant to Eichmann’s order, had all Jews that could be found arrested and sent to Sered. They were thereafter transported to Auschwitz and executed. I know of no survivors from this evacuation of Jews from Slovakia, although many escaped who had hidden during the rounding up in October 1944.
16. In January 1943, I was ordered by Eichmann to go to Salonika and make arrangements with the military administration to find a final solution for the Jewish problem there. Shortly before my departure from Bratislava I was told to meet Hauptsturmfuehrer Brunner in Vienna. He showed me a “Marsch” order and told me that he had been given the assignment by Eichmann to arrange all technical matters and that I was to make contacts with the authorities and governmental agencies. We went to Salonika together on 2 February 1944, and conferred with the Chief of the Military Administration, War Administrative Counsellor Dr. Merten from the military command, Area Salonika-Aegeus. Also, the local branch office of the Secret Police and SD, the Criminal Commissioner Paschleben and Consul General Schoenberg. Dr. Merten was the decisive authority and said he wished the Jews in Salonika first be concentrated in certain areas of the city. This was done without difficulty during February-March 1943. At least 80 percent of the Greek Jews were workers, laborers, craftsmen or longshoremen, but a large proportion of them had tuberculosis and had also suffered of epidemics raging in their quarters. The Salonika Jews had lived in Greece since the 15th century when they had fled from the inquisition in Spain. On or about 10 March, Eichmann sent Brunner a message that the compulsory evacuation (Aussiedlung) of Jews was to start at once. Dr. Merten agreed to the action but requested 3,000 male Jewish workers for railroad construction work under the Organization Todt who were later returned in time for inclusion in the last transports. I talked to Eichmann by telephone in Berlin telling him that typhus raged among the Jews but he said his orders for immediate compulsory evacuation would stand.
17. Some few foreign Jews were returned to their home country and about 700 Jews of Spanish nationality were transported in August 1943 to Bergen-Belsen and in December to Spain. These Jews had obtained their Spanish nationality during the last century while Greece was still under Turkish rule.
18. Altogether, 60,000 Jews were collected from Greece and shipped to Auschwitz. I am sure that this figure is approximately correct. I know that twenty-four transports averaging approximately 2,300 human beings each were shipped from Salonika and surroundings between March and May 1943, under the supervision of Hauptsturmfuehrer Brunner and myself, while two transports of about 2,500 each were shipped from Athens in July 1944 under the supervision of Hauptsturmfuehrer Burger. The freight cars used in these transports were furnished by the Military Transport Command. The requests for these cars went from Hauptsturmfuehrer Novak in IV A 4 b to Department Counsellor Stange in the Ministry of Transport, Berlin and thence through channels to the area transport command. Transports used in effecting the final solution of the Jewish problem commanded a sufficiently high priority to take precedence over other freight movements. All shipments were made on schedule, even in July 1944 when the Germans were evacuating Greece and rail transport needs were critical. Upon the departure of each transport a message was sent to Eichmann in Berlin stating the number of heads sent. I have seen copies of these cables in a folder kept by Brunner and upon completion of the movement of Jews from Northern Greece, Brunner made a summary report to Eichmann. I returned to Bratislava for several weeks and arrived again in Salonika at the end of May 1943 at which time Brunner was preparing the last shipment. The last transport left Salonika two days after my arrival and upon completion of the last shipment, Brunner was transferred to Paris for his new assignment.
19. During the period of collection into designated areas, the Jewish population was compelled to furnish their own subsistence. Upon arrival in the collecting camp, representatives of the Jewish community took over all cash and valuables from the inmates. Altogether, by August 1943, 280,000,000 drachmas had been deposited in the Greek National Bank for such purpose. This amount was appropriated by the German Military Administration. The property left behind, houses, businesses, apartments, movable belongings, etc., were administered by the Greek Governor General of Macedonia under the control of the Military administration.
20. In July 1944, Hoess, Commandant of Auschwitz, told Eichmann in my presence in Budapest that all of the Greek Jews had been exterminated because of their poor quality.
21. In connection with the movement of the German Army into Hungary in March 1944, it was agreed between Hitler and Horthy that the Army should not enter Budapest. No mention was made of the Security Police, however, and an Einsatz Group of about 800 members was secretly organized, under the leadership of Standartenfuehrer, later Oberfuehrer Dr. Geschke. The rank and file of the Einsatz Group consisted of members of the Security Police from all over Germany and occupied Europe, in addition about sixty men from the Waffen SS. Shortly after arrival in Budapest, a further battalion of Waffen SS was assigned to the Einsatz Group for guard purposes. Most of the experts on final solution of the Jewish question in IV A 4 b were organized under the designation “Special Action Commando Eichmann”. This Special Commando was directly subordinated to the Chief of the Security Police and SD, Kaltenbrunner. Both the Einsatz Group and the Special Commando were first activated about 10 March 1944. The personnel were assembled at Mauthausen in Linz, Austria, and moved later into Hungary 19 March 1944. Matters of personnel for the Special Action Commandos were handled by Geschke, while all operations were directed by Eichmann personally. The Army had informed higher SS and Police Leader Winckelman as representative of Himmler, and Oberfuehrer Piffrader and Dr. Geschke as representatives of RSHA, of the place and hour of the invasion of Hungary. I had advance knowledge of the action that was to be undertaken although it was kept secret from the rank and file of the group. I had seen Eichmann studying maps of Hungary in advance of the movement. We marched into Budapest on 19 March 1944 ahead of the Army and Eichmann arrived there on 21 March. 22. During the first days after arrival in Budapest, Eichmann, Hunsche and I conferred with Endre and von Baky who were Administrative State, Secretary and Political State Secretary respectively of the Ministry of Interior for Hungary. Actions against Jews, were discussed in the smallest detail. It was the purpose to start, evacuation of Jews as soon as possi1e. In late March 1944, about 200 Jews prominent in the economical and cultural life of Hungary were taken as hostages on orders of Geschke. Thereafter in accordance with. the agreement between Endre and Eichmann, Jews were concentrated in designated larger cities and towns in Karpato-Russia and Siebenbuergen (Transylvania), such actions being undertaken by the Hungarian Gendarmerie under Lt. Colonel Ferenzcy who had the same relative position for the Hungarian Ministry of Interior as, K had for Special Action Commando Eichmann in the carrying out of these actions. Eichmann’s delegates were sent to each of the larger collecting points.
23. While detailed preparations were being made and actions taken to prepare all Hungarian Jews for evacuation, Dr. Rudolph Kastner of the Joint Distribution Committee gave me 3,000,000 pengoe for Eichmann to induce him to grant a first interview on the Jewish question. This money was carefully counted and taken over by Geschke’s treasurer. About 8 or 10 April, a meeting was arranged at the Hotel Majestic in Eichmann’s office between Dr. Kastner, Mr. Brand another representative of: the Cornmittee, and Eichmann. There followed a series of conversations in which Eichmann was implored to leave Hungarian Jews aIone upon an offer to pay any amount to stop further action. Eichmann reported the situation to Himmler who sent Standartenfuehrer Becher to continue negotiations in Budapest. Demand was made by Becher for payment in trucks and raw materials with the condition. that they would. not be used against England or America. I was later informed that this proposal was turned down by the Allied countries because there was no assurance that they would not be used against the U. S. S. R. As Eichmann had predicted and wished, the negotiations failed and although Dr. Kastner fought bitterly to obtain some concessions, the planned actions went ahead.
24. I think it quite important to describe the attitude of the Hungarian Government. According to Ferenzcy, the Hungarian Government at first agreed only to concentrate the Jews in certain collecting points. Conditions created by the massing of hundreds of thousands of people in narrow camps were unbearable. The inmates could not be fed or taken care of. Ferenzcy went to Budapest about 20 April 1944, and reported to Endre and von Baky that either the Jews would have to be returned to their homes or removed to other areas. This was Eichmann’s hoped for moment. He declared that he would be ready to take over these Jews if the Hungarian government would make a special request. It happened as follows: Ferenczy arrived in Budapest in the morning, reported to von Baky who sent him to Eichmann. Ferenzcy saw Eichmann around noon and received Eichmann’s request. At 4 o’clock in the afternoon the Hungarian government had made the demanded request. Eichmann arranged at once in Vienna conference of transport experts for the arrangement of the time table of the evacuation. In this conference, Novak, for the Hungarians Captain Lulay, Ferenzcy’s Adjutant, participated and in addition, representatives from the Reich Ministry of Transport were present. I saw copies of the cables which were sent regarding all these matters from Eichmann to the Chief of the Security Police and SD, Kaltenbrunner, reporting the developments; furthermore, a cable to Eichmann’s deputy, Sturmbannfuehrer Rolf Guenther requesting him to immediately inform the Inspector of concentration camps, Brigadefuehrer Glicks of the arrival of the Hungarian Jews in Auschwitz and ask him to make all necessary preparations for their reception.
25. The evacuation of Jews from Hungary took place in four stages. First, Karpato-Russia and Northern Transylvania from which area approximately 320,000 were evacuated. The second stage was in Northern Hungary including parts ceded by Slovakia. There were about 42,000 evacuated from this area. The third stage covered Southern Hungary. including Szeged from which 46,000 were evacuated. The fourth stage covered, Western Hungary and removed about 40,000 Jews. Action in this area started at the end of the first stage and continued during the second in Northern Hungary. A special action took place in Batschka involving about 10,000. The aggregate number in these four stages was approximately 468,000. Only the city of Budapest remained outside the scope of the evacuations. Eichmann and his fellow conspirators, Endre and von Baky, made repeated attempts to carry through actions in Budapest but were prevented by the intervention of Horthy who, through the intermediary of Dr. Kastner and I, was informed of the planned actions.
26. Negotiations between the Joint Distribution Committee and Himmler’s representative, Becher, continued during all this time. Fearing that some kind of an agreement would eventually be achieved, Eichmann decided to send about 9,000 Hungarian Jews to Vienna, he called them “Joint Jews” so they could be shown to representatives of the Joint Distribution Committee. It was Krumey who sold the idea to Eichmsnn. In this connection, Eichmann together with Becher visited Himmler in July. In August 1944, 3,000 additional “Joint Jews” were sent to Bergen-Belsen from where, in December, they were sent to Switzerland.
27. In November and December 1944, about 30,000 Jews were evacuated from Budapest to Austria. A small number were forwarded to the concentration camps of Flossenbrueck and Sachsenhausen. The evacuation of these 30,000 took place under terrible conditions. The group consisted mostly of women and some Jewish units from the Hungarian labor’ service, and they were forced to walk about 180 kilometers in rain and snow and without food to the Austrian border. There Abromeit and I were charged with receiving the group and further transporting them to the labor camps. The group arrived in a state of complete exhaustion and I was told by the Hungarian guards that a considerable number had died of exhaustion and starvation during the march. I first refused but was later compelled to take over the transport from the Hungarians when this protest was reported by the Hungarians to Eichmann. From that moment on, Eichmann com-pletely lost his confidence in me, a confidence which had already earlier been shaken. My participation in the Hungarian actions ended.
28. I am not personally informed as to the affects of measures taken in Germany or other occupied countries although I have heard many discussions by Eichmann and the Jewish Specialists from RSHA on such areas concerning the numbers involved. Neither am I informed as to the results of operations by Einsatz Groups in Poland and Russia but I know that Einsatz Groups operating in the East were designated “A ” through at least “H”. I talked to members of Einsatz Group “H” late in 1944 in Hungary, who had operated in the area around the Black Sea. On the basis of the information I have received, some of which came direct from Eichmann, there were hundreds of thousands of Jews exterminated by these Einsatz Groups.
29. In November 1942, in Eichmann’s office in Berlin, I met Standartenfuehrer Plobel, who was leader of Kommando 1005, which was specially assigned to remove all traces of the final solution (extermination) of the Jewish problem by Einsatz Groups and all other executions. Kommando 1005 operated from at least autumn 1942 to September 1944 and was all this period subordinated to Eichmann. The mission was constituted after it first became apparent that Germany would not be able to hold all the territory occupied in the East and it was considered necessary to remove all traces of the criminal executions that had been committed. While in Berlin in November 1942, Plobel gave a lecture before Eichmann’s staff of specialists on the Jewish question from the occupied territories. He spoke of the special incinerators he had personally constructed for use in the work of Kommando 1005. It was their particular assignment to open the graves and remove and cremate the bodies of persons who had been previously executed. Kommando 1005 operated in Russia, Poland and through the Baltic area. I again saw Plobel in Hungary in 1944 and he stated to Eichmann in my presence that the mission of Kommando 1005 had been completed..
30. After being dismissed by Eichmann from further participation in the final solution of the Jewish question in Hungary, I paid a visit to Slovakia on personal business and reported to Berlin end of January 1945. I had a short formal interview with Eichmann who then took me to Mueller for reassignment outside of IV A 4 b. Mueller assigned me to IV B 2 c which handled Slovakian matters other than Jewish questions. On 28 January, I reported in Trebnitz outside Berlin where the subsection had evacuated because of heavy air raids in Berlin. While at Trebnitz I was given the assignment of studying papers in connection with the Slovakian insurrection August-December 1944. My interest was drawn to the files containing the interrogation reports of the captured members of the American and British military mission in Slovakia. These files were given to me by Sturmbannfuehrer Schoeneseiffen who had been in charge of the interrogations of the prisoners at Mauthausen concentration camp. I ascertained the following facts. Members of the two missions were landed in Banska Bystrica by airplanes from Bari, Italy. Their mission was to contact Allied pilots who had been compelled to land in Slovakia, and help effectuate their escape to Italy. They had succeeded in this task in many cases. Another task was to contact the leaders of the insurrection Army, the socalled Czechoslovakian Army of insurrection” especially Generals Viest and Golian , obtain information of their demands for equipment and other supplies and transmit these demands to the Allies’, in Bari and in London.
31. After the collapse of the insurrection, the members of the mission fled to the mountains in Lower Tatra where they were finally captured at the end of November or the beginning of ‘December by squads from the Commander of Security Police and SD at Bratislava, Witiska. The prisoners were brought to Bratislava where they were subjected to preliminary interrogations and reports were sent to RSHA and thence to Himmler. The files showed a large number of communications back and forth between Witiska and the RSHA. Himmler finally, by the middle of December, ordered the prisoners brought to Mauthausen concentration camp for thorough interrogation. Schoeneseiffen was detailed to prepare the questionnaires pertaining to the American and English Foreign Intelligence Service. He had the cooperation in this work of the AMTs interested in these matters and then proceeded to Mauthausen accompanied by a staff of interpreters. The result of his interrogations were contained in the files in the form of extensive individual reports. These reports were signed by the interrogator, the interpreter and the witness. The copies of summaries of the interrogations which were sent to Himmler carried Kaltenbrunner’s initials. I limited my examination to the matters in which I was interested but I do remember that the name of the Chief of the American mission was Captain Brown, another member of this Mission was Lieut. Mican. The Chief of the British mission was Captain Sehmer, a man of German extraction, and another member was Rice whose family name had been something like Hochfelder, an Austrian Jew who had emigrated from Vienna in 1938. There were no signs in the report that the interrogations had been conducted by pressure methods except in the report signed by one of the American officers, I believe Brown, had, and I distinctly remember it, signed in English above his signature “Given under duress and protest”. I know that pressure methods were used in special cases upon special permission from above. The files I examined contained no such orders but certain papers had been. extracted by Schoeneseiffen and retained in his personal custody. The last paper in the file was a request from OKW to have the captured Allied prisoners transferred to regular PW camps. However, I learned from Sturmbannfuehrer Thomsen IV B 2 that the prisoners had been shot on order of Hitler as retaliation for alleged shooting of German officers in Paris.
32. On the first of February, the camp in Trebnitz was evacuated because of the approaching Russians. Mueller returned me to Eichmann. In late February I talked to Eichmann and he made the statement which I have referred to above in paragraph 10. Eichmann proposed to Runsche and myself that he was going to have Theresienstadt destroyed together with all the Jewish inmates. We prevailed upon him to abandon such a plan. At this meeting, Eichmann also said that if matters came to the worst, he would return to Prague and shoot his family and himself. I did not see Eichmann again.
I understand written English and have made the foregoing statements and attached Appendix A-I and II voluntarily and under oath. [signed] DIETER WISLICENY
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 29th day of November 1946 at Nurnberg, Germany.
[signed] SMITH W. BROOKHART, JR. Lt. Col. IGD
Unable to link him directly to any atrocities, the Nuremberg tribunal sentenced him to 20 years imprisonment. A clemency court commuted this sentence to 10 years, and he was released on 30 September 1952. CIA files suggest Six joined the Gehlen Organization, the forerunner to the Bundesnachrichtendienst, in the 1950s.
Franz Six retired to Friedrichshafen in southwest Germany. He worked as a publicity/advertising executive for Porsche. In 1960, he was interviewed by British journalist Comer Clarke for his book England Under Hitler (referenced below under further reading).
Six was called as one of four witnesses by defense attorney Robert Servatius in the 1961 trial in Israel of Adolf Eichmann, and gave his testimony by deposition in West Germany. Servatius had wanted to have Six appear in person, but Prosecutor Gideon Hausner stated that the former Nazi general would be subject to arrest as a war criminal. Six’s testimony was introduced in Eichmann’s defense, but proved to be of more help to the prosecution.
[Appendix A-I omitted.]
Franz Six died in 1975.
50 Years After Trial, Eichmann Secrets Live On
By MICHAEL KIMMELMAN . NY Times
Published: May 8, 2011
BERLIN — Germany is famous for confronting its Nazi past. But confronting the years after the war is another matter. The latest proof comes as the country’s foreign intelligence agency, the BND, refuses to declassify several thousand secret files detailing what Adolf Eichmann, the high-ranking Nazi who helped orchestrate the Holocaust, was doing between 1945 and his capture by Mossad agents in Buenos Aires in 1960. More than a few Germans have been speculating that the refusal has as much to do with tarnishing a cherished era as with betraying potential sources.
A new exhibition at the Topography of Terror Museum in Berlin called “Facing Justice — Adolf Eichmann on Trial” opened last month.
The 50th anniversary of Eichmann’s trial this spring has cast the early days of the postwar Federal Republic in a fresh historical light. Those were the years when the new West Germany held itself up as the cure for what ailed a humiliated and broken nation, and as an alternative to the Communist East.
That era was also the populist heyday of the organization man. And the classic portrait of Eichmann as a soulless cog in the machinery of totalitarianism, a petty bureaucrat acting out of “blind obedience,” in the incredulous description by Moshe Landau, the presiding judge at the trial — who, as it happens, died just the other day, at 99 — has also come to seem a sacred but dubious shibboleth of the time.
A different picture of the man, and the period, has begun to circulate. Bild, the German tabloid, having recently forced the BND through the courts to release a few files, uncovered an index card from 1952 that made clear that West German intelligence officials already knew Eichmann was living in Argentina. The card listed his alias there, or something close to it, and a contact who edited a well-known Nazi magazine in Buenos Aires, Der Weg.
West German authorities had claimed they had no clue where Eichmann went until the Israelis found him. Then in 2006 declassified C.I.A. documents showed they knew as early as 1956. Now it turns out they knew even earlier. Considering that Eichmann’s wife and children settled in Argentina in 1952 — living openly with Eichmann under their own names, in a house that was under his name — it seems remarkable today that authorities got away with claiming ignorance for so long.
Germans reacted to the Bild article with a familiar shake of the head that, here, implies not a lack of concern but stoic resignation. The bigger kerfuffle, though, has been around the more than 4,000 pages of undisclosed intelligence about Eichmann.
“The postwar period remains sensitive,” explained Bettina Stangneth, the author of a new German book on Eichmann, “because many Germans want to preserve the positive image they have of that time.”
She meant the postwar years of Konrad Adenauer’s chancellorship and the so-called economic miracle. Few West German officials, or for that matter American ones, had any interest in hunting for Eichmann during the 1950s, Ms. Stangneth noted. Both countries employed ex-Nazis in government jobs. Eichmann had beans to spill. Better to leave him in obscurity, they figured.
That Adenauer’s close adviser, Hans Globke, helped strip Jews of their rights under the Nazis was a widely publicized scandal, but it only distracted from the larger shame that countless lesser-known Nazis lived and worked under the radar throughout West German society, including in the ranks of the BND.
A new exhibition about the trial at the Topography of Terror Museum here devotes a section to reappraising the work of the philosopher Hannah Arendt, pointing out that she failed to attend much of the trial, never saw Eichmann cross-examined and thus didn’t witness his “just following orders” defense crumble.
“Neither perverted nor sadistic,” is how Arendt described Eichmann, but “terribly and terrifyingly normal.” In Argentina Eichmann had been interviewed by an ex-Nazi, Willem Sassen, who, along with some other ex-Nazis there, dreamed about exonerating Hitler and inaugurating a Fourth Reich. Confronted with some of the Sassen material at the trial, Eichmann was exposed. He had told Sassen that he only regretted not having murdered more Jews. “I could have done more and should have done more,” he said.
The German historian Ulrich Herbert, during a recent interview with a German newspaper, described Eichmann as typical of many high-ranking Nazis, priding himself on being “an anti-Semite without anti-Semitic emotions.” Historians like Mr. Herbert have increasingly been questioning Arendt’s iconic concept of the “banality of evil.” As an underling to ultimate Nazi policy makers like Himmler and Heydrich, Eichmann was following orders, but was also “convinced of his actions,” Mr. Herbert insisted.
He added that Arendt’s catchphrase caught on in the popular imagination not because it accurately described Eichmann but because it expressed a widespread “disappointment in the lack of magnitude, even if diabolical, which one would somehow expect from one of the most important organizers of the mass murders.”
There is surely even more to it than that. The phrase dovetailed with the Willy Loman ethos of the day. Arendt built a philosophy of totalitarianism around what had become a postwar cultural commonplace. Other journalists covering the trial portrayed Eichmann the same way, as a hapless nobody in a glass booth. It was in the air.
It just didn’t suit Eichmann. Combing through the papers his family turned over to a Swiss publishing house years ago, now in the German state archives, Ms. Stangneth recently found a draft Eichmann prepared of an open letter to Adenauer, written from Argentina. “It’s about how to explain away the past, how to idealize National Socialism and downplay the crimes, so that Germany could regain its moral reputation and become strong again,” Ms. Stangneth said. “Eichmann hated being anonymous. He missed power. He wanted to matter again. On some level I think he even enjoyed his trial.”
The exhibition at the Topography of Terror Museum ends with the trial’s aftermath. Eichmann’s conviction upped the pressure on reluctant West Germans to repeal their 20-year statute of limitations on crimes, which many Nazis living in hiding banked on. But by 1968 little had really changed. West German youth took to the streets, as others did elsewhere.
Of all things it was the 1978 broadcast of an American melodrama, a four-part NBC mini-series called “The Holocaust,” that finally did what even Eichmann’s trial and the upheavals of 1968 could not. Young Germans weaned on television, Vietnam and civil rights, as the American historian Deborah Lipstadt notes in her well-done new book, “The Eichmann Trial,” were finally ready to glorify stories of the oppressed.
As the Eichmann trial gave a face to the Nazi extermination process, so the docudrama made the incomprehensible vastness of six million dead legible through testimonials of individual suffering. Survivors thereafter came to shape accountings of the Holocaust at precisely the point when a public born well after the war suddenly wanted to overturn the old historical narrative.
Today the question is whether a new generation of Germans wants to exorcise the postwar ghosts. A pending court case initiated by two journalists here demands the BND make public those classified pages of Eichmann material. Fifty years ago most Germans clearly preferred not to know.
Perhaps now it is time for a reckoning.
photos pertaining to the Holocaust (warning, some are disturbing):
13 year old at Mauthausen
serbs and jews
jasenovac death camp , yugoslavia