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The whole book in one clic



Chapter VII



On May 28th, 1960, the name of Adolf Eichmann, unknown until then except to a few specialists in the history of National Socialism and German concentration camps, suddenly became notorious in the world press. On that date Ben Gurion, President of the Council of State, ascended the plinth of the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) and announced to the deputies that "the person responsible for the death of six million Jews, and their executioner" had been captured by commandos of the Israeli secret service, and taken the preceding May 11th from Argentina; that he was in prison in Tel-Aviv; and that he would be judged by an Israeli tribunal.

And from that date on, the "six million Jews" -- zealous journalists even spoke of 9 million -- "men, women, old folk and children, exterminated in the gas chambers at Auschwitz" and other places, were once again served up every morning for breakfast the world over.

On the 11th of April, 1961, after a preliminary investigation that lasted no less than eleven months, the trial in question began at Jerusalem before an audience of journalists from every corner of the earth.

And on the 11th of December, the Tribunal rendered its judgement -- the death penalty.

On Eichmann's personality, the conditions under which his trial developed, the arguments brought forward, the political context into which the facts invoked against him must be placed and the interpretations given them, the jurists, it seems, had much more to say than the historians, and for the following reasons.

1. Who is Adolf Eichmann?

Adolf Eichmann was born in March 19th, 1906, at Solingen (and not in Palestine in the German colony of Saron, as Mme Nina Gourfinkel succeeded in making everyone believe. She wrote the preface to the book of Joël Brand, Un million de Juifs contre dix mille camions (One million Jews for 10 thousand trucks) which holds an honourable position among the many historians born of Resistancism).

His father was Prokurist (legal representative) for the tram company of the city. In 1913 the family moved to Linz where, after having held the same job as at Solingen for a while, his father retired and opened up a business in electric appliances. But in 1913, the Eichmann family was made up of the father, the mother and only Adolf; of the five children it included (one of which was [131] from the father's earlier marriage), the eldest was German and the other four Austrian. In the 1930s, under Chancellor Dolfuss, this had a certain importance because the eldest, considered a foreigner in Austria, could not find employment. Through his family's contact with Kaltenbrunner, then leader of Austrian National Socialism at Linz, he became a salaried member of the Party at Passau, in Germany, because such activities were specifically forbidden to him in Austria. Thus began the career of Adolf Eichmann.

Little by little, he climbed the ladder in the S.S., up to Obersturmbannführer (Lieutenant-Colonel) of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (Central Office of the Reich Security Service) in which, from its inauguration in 1936, he had been attached to Office (or service) IV B 4 (Jewish affairs).

In order to assess his responsibility in the Jewish drama we have to see him in his rank in that service, and we must mention that the Reichssicherheitshauptamt was composed of seven sections, all of an executive character: in the fourth of these offices, in section B (there were two sections - A and B), Eichmann was head of the fourth sub-office. Over him in the hierarchy, there was a colonel Müller, head of all the sub-offices grouped under IV B, about whom nobody has ever talked (he later became a very high police functionary in East Germany).

Above Müller there was another colonel -- Roth -- head of the two sections A and B. Above Roth was Heydrich, head of all seven offices. Finally came the supreme head, Heinrich Himmler. When Heydrich was killed by the Czech Resistance at the beginning of June 1942, Kaltenbrunner took his place and, until the end of the war, that was the only important change that took place in the directorship of the R.S.H.A.

In the Reichssicherheitshauptamt, Lieutenant-Colonel Adolf Eichmann was therefore sixth in rank, and on the functionary level only of decisions taken at a much higher level than Himmler himself, since it was only in 1943 that Himmler was raised to the rank of minister.

In the machinery of Nazi power there were thousands and thousands of posts with this type of responsibility.

From March 1942 on, the date when the massive deportation of the Jews began, Office IV B 4, of which Eichmann was the head, got orders to devote itself to their transportation to concentration camps. In a similar way, the office of which Pohl was the head had the order to devote itself to the economic organisation of those camps, and another office was ordered to make investigations among the Jews and re-group them. But since all the steps to be taken concerning the Jews were decided at government level, Eichmann's only part was to carry out the orders and only to the extent that the order concerned him.

It was only in relation to these considerations that Eichmann's responsibility and guilt could be defined and, in all traditional [132] societies, it is the personal drama of everyone to whom, under threat of severe condemnation, right of conscientious objection is denied. On this point the Jerusalem trial showed that from 1941 on, Eichmann experienced that drama in the same way that Professor Balachowsky of the Pasteur Institute at Paris did at Buchenwald -- forced by Dr. Dingschüller to experiment on the deportees with vaccines, knowing perfectly well, as he has himself testified, that it amounted to assassination. I said in the same way because, if there is a difference, it is only one of motives. While the Lieutenant-Colonel, whose education was obviously rudimentary, explained his obedience to orders received in terms of obedience to State policy and love of country, the Professor, whose education could not be doubted, gave as his reason that he did not want "to disappear." That this difference materialised in the final analysis in the rope for one and honours for the other is the essence of the problem. If, as traditional ethics have it, it is true that in all this it was the motive that counted, one could then say that in this case the roles were badly allotted by justice.

2. The Trial itself

With regard to moral as well as international law, Adolf Eichmann found himself as a defendant before an Israeli tribunal under conditions which were as wrong to one as to the other. No one has more clearly established that than M. Raymond de Geouffre de la Pradelle in an article published in Le Figaro on June 9th, 1960.

It is best to let him speak for himself; if my competence in the matter could easily be questioned, it would be very difficult to dispute his.

This is what M. Raymond de Geouffre de la Pradelle says, all other considerations aside, on the question of guilt:

"The proceedings carried on right after the end of the war by the Allies were based on the London agreement of August 8th, 1945, and the Moscow declaration of October 30th, 1943, to which the London agreement expressly refers. The principle laid down is that of the return of war criminals to the country in which their crimes were committed. In addition to that, the London statute of August 8th, 1945, created an international military tribunal to try criminals whose crimes were without definite geographical localisation...

This London statute was promulgated by the Allies after they had received, May 8th, 1945, from the head of the Reich government, Grand Admiral Doenitz, through the unconditional surrender, the mandate of German sovereignty...

There is no international text given that gives the State of Israel the right to judge a foreign national to whom crimes against humanity are imputed, or war crimes, when these crimes were committed in a foreign country. Furthermore, at the time when [138] these crimes were committed, there could be no question of victims of Israelite nationality because the State of Israel did not exist.

The State of Israel is sovereign. Within the limits of its territory Israel may, if it wishes, by special law, give itself whatever jurisdictional right it chooses. But this right violates the general principles of law, and of the international rule of competence established for crimes having an essentially international character, since having been carried out in Germany at a time when German law considered them licit, they are crimes only with regard to international law."

And M. Raymond Geouffre de la Pradelle concludes that the only lawful procedure would have been a demand on Argentina for extradition by Germany, who alone was qualified to make such a demand.

It could not be better put. But Argentina had given Eichmann the right of asylum, probably the reason why, as any other country in similar circumstances would act, Germany did not demand his extradition. Is France today asking for the extradition from Spain of many French citizens considered by her to be criminals and to whom Spain has granted asylum? Even Napoleon III did not ask for the extradition of Victor Hugo from Britain.

Still, France did not go on to kidnapping in France or in Argentina. The only example historically comparable with Eichmann's kidnapping., is that of the Duke d'Enghien by Napoleon I, and neither Law nor History has forgiven him for it.

The reader will excuse me if, instead of invoking moral principles which are always debatable, I have preferred to cite the texts. Although they are colder, they lend the Eichmann trial the character of a Moscow trial; and if grounds for guilt could be stated against Eichmann, they have disappeared in the face of the unpardonable circumstances of his kidnapping and, in the eyes of posterity, the person who was condemned is more likely to be considered a victim than an executioner.

Posterity is all the more likely to come to this conclusion because Eichmann's defence was not able to cite in court all the witnesses for the defence that it would have liked to; for example, all the Germans living at liberty and in harmony with international law and the laws of their country, were threatened with arrest for suspicion of guilt of crimes leading to a death sentence, if they so much as set foot on the soil of Israel. Under such circumstances, Eichmann was not judged, he was assassinated.

3. The Accusation and its Political Meaning

The prosecution was considerably weakened by its central motif: the six million European Jews mass-exterminated in gas chambers. It can never be repeated often enough that this figure was given only by the press and the witnesses; as we know, the indictment drawn up by M. Gideon Haussner confined itself to [139] saying "millions", and that is the first step of admission in this obvious imposture.

After the war, in an atmosphere of mental confusion and general disorder, it was easy to have that argument accepted. Today many more documents have been made public which were not known during the Nuremberg trial, and these documents tend to prove that although Jewish nationals were odiously attacked and persecuted by the Hitlerian regime, it is not possible that there were 6 million victims.

Once it became possible to even discuss the figure and it was agreed by everyone in the world that the figure was considerably exaggerated, then it was possible to talk about how it was done.

For example, we know today that there were no gas chambers at Buchenwald, or at Bergen-Belsen, or Dachau, or Mauthausen.

Caught in the act of lying concerning gas chambers in these camps, witnesses who had pretended to have seen them functioning were naturally not believed when they talked about the gas chambers at Auschwitz, which is perfectly natural. Their credibility declined even further when they contradicted each other; if one could be believed, the other could not. Faced with these contradictions, what is public opinion to do except to dismiss both parties and to charge them with having fabricated the story?

If, on the other hand, from the number of prosecution witnesses still alive, one turns out occasionally to be of no more worth than those whom he is accusing - one of their accomplices or a former member of the Intelligence Service etc. - public opinion sees only added grounds for its disapproval.

Such was the case of von dem Bach-Zalewski, Obergruppenführer General of the Waffen S.S., and head of one of the famous Einsatzgruppen (something like commandos) in pursuit of partisans and Jews on the Eastern front. Thanks to him we learned about the activity of these marginal units, and of a speech given "at the beginning of 1941" at Weselberg (without any more detail), in which the Reichsführer S.S. was supposed to have said that "the aim of the campaign in the East is to reduce the Slav population by 30,000,000." But no one else has ever heard of this speech and no written text of it has ever been produced (Nuremberg hearing of January lst, 1946, Volume IV, p. 500). On January 16th, 1961, this von dem Bach-Zalewski was arrested for "a political assassination committed in cold blood" on July 2nd, 1934, and for acts of cruelty in which he was involved "during the crushing of the Warsaw uprising of 1944 and during the struggle against partisans in the Russian campaign, as well as the execution of Polish hostages at Sosnovitz-Dendzin." (Newspapers, January 17th, 1961, dispatch of the A.F.P.) And on February 11th of the same year he was condemned to 4,5 years in prison, which shows that since Nuremberg justice has become singularly indulgent.

And that was the case again when, on January 25th, 1961, the British magazine Weekend came out with a photograph on its [140] cover of Hoettl, with the following caption:

The SPY STORY that's stranger than fiction
He was a friend of Nazi leaders
His real boss was a British secret service man

That was how it was learned that the principal witness for the establishment of six million as the number of Jews exterminated by Nazism was an agent of the Intelligence Service (!!).

It is well to make it clear that this figure of 6 million depends on two testimonies only: that of Hoettl and that of Wizliceny.

This is the statement of the first:

"In August 1944," said Obersturmbannführer Dr. Wilhelm Hoettl, head of the bureau connected with section IV of the Reich Central Security Office, "S.S. Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann, whom I had known since 1938, had a conversation with me in my apartment in Budapest... He knew that he was considered a war criminal by the United Nations because he had the lives of thousands of Jews on his conscience. I asked him how many, and he answered that although the number was a great secret he would tell me because, from the information he had, he had arrived at this conclusion: in the various extermination camps about 4 million Jews had been gassed and 2 million killed in another way." (Taken from the Report on the Nuremberg Tribunal, Volume XXXIII, p. 85-87.)

And the second:

"He (Eichmann) said that he would jump into his grave laughing because the thought of having 5 million persons on his conscience would be a source of extraordinary satisfaction to him. " (op. cit.)

Of these two testimonies, M. Poliakov himself says, "One could certainly raise the objection that a figure so imperfectly supported must be considered suspect." (Revue d'Histoire de la seconde guerre mondiale, October 1956).

Nobody made him say so! We also know that one of these two witnesses was an Intelligence Service agent. And the other, who had seen Himmler's signature on an extermination order, put himself at the disposition of the law in order to trap Eichmann and seek mercy for himself, but was hanged, despite his cooperation, for having been Eichmann's accomplice.

Concerning the political context in which the Trial should be placed, it is well to note that M. Raymond de Geouffre de la Pradelle was not the only one to protest against the kidnapping of Eichmann and to deny competence to the judges of Jerusalem. Even in Israeli circles there were eddies of feeling before the opening of the trial, and there still are, after the sentencing of the accused.

In the Monde of June 21st, 1960, one could, for example, find [141] the attitude of the American Council for Judaism, (1) which represents the point of view of the majority of American Israelites, namely:

...The American Council for Judaism last Monday sent a letter to Mr. Christian Herter denying the right of the Israeli government to speak in the name of all Jews. "The Council declares that Judaism is a matter of religion and not of nationality, and asks Mr. Herter to oppose the pretention of the Israeli government to judge Eichmann in the name of Judaism."

To this, Mr. Nahum Goldmann, President of the World Congress of Jews, very embarrassed, replied:

"As the Israeli authorities have admitted, this action is obviously an infringement of Argentina laws. It could furthermore establish a dangerous precedent. But the case is so exceptional that the illegal aspect of the action should not be considered the only or even the principal element of the matter... The State of Israel cannot claim to represent world Judaism (Jewry), but since Israel does exist, and since it has succeeded in capturing Eichmann, I am in agreement that he be judged in the Hebrew State. If Mr. Ben Gurion wishes to turn the Eichmann trial into another Nuremberg it would be to his advantage to support the Israeli president with an ad hoc tribunal made up of representatives of all the countries who suffered under the yoke of the ex-S.S. colonel."

But even this point of view was not accepted by the Israeli government.

In any case, it was not a legal problem that the State of Israel was claiming to solve by this trial, but a political problem. Indeed, we know that the indemnity which Germany has been constrained to pay Israel, in the name of damages which this state did not suffer, was to come to an end on January 1st, 1962. Since the annual payment amounts to 200 million marks, one of the State's most important sources of revenue was in danger of drying up. It was all the more serious because the Israeli budget cannot do without assistance of this proportion. Israel has survived for twelve years, thanks only to the German reparations, American aid, French and British kindnesses and subsidies from Diaspora Jewry. Naturally, the Israeli government wanted to get a pure and simple renewal of payments for an indefinite period. No less naturally, Germany thought they had had quite enough. So it was not Eichmann himself committed for trial but Germany, threatened with having all the leading political figures of her government charged before the universal conscience during the course of this trial. All the ministers and the most influential members of Chancellor Adenauer's political circle were liable to be accused of Connivance with Nazism through this trial. And so it was really a .question of blackmail: either Germany would accept the proposed [142] deal implicitly, or no German government was possible. Such calculations can, at least, be attributed to the leaders of the State of Israel. And, by a singular coincidence, it harmonised admirably with the concerns of the Kremlin.

I have found this contention in many publications which cannot be suspected of being sympathetic to Germany or hostile to the Jews. In particular, in the Canard Enchaîné of April 2nd, 1961, just after the opening of the Eichmann Trial, we read:

"The Eichmann Trial," said the Canard Enchaîné, "is going to appear as a trial of Hitlerian Germany on the one hand and of Konrad's Germany on the other. Certain people, such as some Israelis not to be named, say that they have no hand in it, and that as far as they are concerned they are interested only in a trial of National Socialism, do not care a damn for Eichmann and are going to multiply the proclamations against Adenauer because employed in his government are quite a number of ex-Nazis, such as his favourite, the Secretary of State Globke, dedicated annotator of the Nuremberg racial laws.

"During the hearings we can expect to hear the names of hundreds and hundreds of persons presently employed in Federal Germany. Such heaps of judges, officers, deputies, high officials, professors etc., are going to get so splattered that it will be a pleasure to watch.

"All to the good of Bonn propaganda. Some are laughing to split their sides saying that Nikita will at once certainly, and dryly, bring up the problem of Berlin, right during the trial, just at the moment when world opinion will be very aroused against Germany."

Two weeks earlier it had already stated:

"A few days after his capture (Eichmann), Ben Gurion, who was giving speeches in the United States, heard that a certain Konrad turned up in Washington again for a talk with Ike. B.G... took the first available taxi and hurried to where Konrad was staying.

"He went in with a certain smile, he came out with a grin. if you looked closely, seen in a fold of his tie (although he never wears one) was something like a cheque for 500 million marks. Germany was starting to pay again! At last!

"The Israelis are not in the least disconcerted when this detail is pointed out to them -- after all, the expenses of the trial have to be paid for, they tell you, with a big laugh."

I do not know whether Adenauer gave out 500 million marks or not; the two suppositions are equally plausible. But if he did give 500 million marks, it was hardly more than two annual payments. In consideration for that sum, assurances must have been given to the Chancellor that certain things would not be said. And in fact they were not. The German press which reflects government opinion (Die Welt, Frankfurter Allgemeine, Süddeutsche Zeitung, etc.) was unanimous in underlining "the relief felt retrospectively [143] at the way the trial was developing." Before the first hearing, as Le Monde at Paris, December 16th, 1961, explained, Bonn expected to be in the limelight for weeks, even months, with a resultant stirring up in the world of anti-German resentment. Nothing like that happened. The Eichmann Trial did not turn into a trial of the Federal Republic.

The subsidies were to continue until April 1st, 1964. Between now and that date the Israelis will try to find a way to get a renewal. There are still quite a number of Eichmanns around. By that I mean persons who could be accused of crimes against humanity and against the Jewish race. Is Israel already nursing a plan for the kidnapping of the next one, for another blackmail attempt on the same terms? One hears a lot about S.S. Obersturmbannführer Dr. Mengele, doctor at Auschwitz, accused of the most unimaginable experiments on Jewish prisoners. In any case, it is a most profitable expedient and one that can be taken up again and again, almost indefinitely, and which could assure the financial stability of the State of Israel for a few centuries. When, at so distant a date in the future that it cannot be predicted, the last of the Nazis has been hanged in Israel, nothing will be left except to write the music for these New Master Singers of Nuremberg, since under the aegis of the Nuremberg trials the libretto has already been written for the new Ballad of the Hanged.

4. From Scandal to Scandal

The way in which Eichmann was kidnapped was a scandal with regard to the law of nations. We have seen that, in addition to the greatest international jurists, such eminent Jewish personages as Nahum Goldmann, for example, and even organisations like the American Council for Judaism were disturbed. In this line, there is more to come.

In Argentina Eichmann had made the acquaintance of a former S.S. man, Dutch by birth, Sassen by name. He had been a war correspondent attached to S.S. operational units during the entire conflict and been sentenced to death in his own country. He was then living in Buenos Aires on an import-export business, a little bit of journalism and other writings. For a very long time this Sassen did not know just who this man was who called himself a former S.S. man like himself; who frequented as assiduously as he did Argentine circles of exiled Germans; who said his name was Ricardo Klement, which everyone in those circles knew was an assumed name. But he had noticed that of all the exiled Germans with whom he had met, this Ricardo Klement was the best informed on what Jewish writings called the extermination of the European Jews, and he was not long in suspecting that here was surely a person who had played an important role in the affair. From then on he cultivated his friendship. At the time he had not yet set up the import-export business which is today his main [144] source of income. Promoting himself in his capacity as a former S.S. war correspondent in the theatre of operations, he had succeeded in making a connection with Life magazine through a relation. From time to time he was given a few lines of copy in Life, particularly on Argentine political matters, because he had been clever enough to make fairly close connections with Peron's entourage.

"Some day," Ricardo Klement often said, "I will write my memoirs."

But he had to earn a living and he had not yet got around to writing his memoirs.

"What a shame," Sassen said, "because you seem to be very well informed."

And thus he flattered him.

The talks took place in a little book store in Buenos Aires owned by a former German schoolmaster in Argentina. This man was not a former S.S. man nor a refugee. But he published a German paper with nationalist leanings called Der Weg, which all the German exiles read with great interest because, in their eyes, it was most objective and stated all the conclusions about the war at which they themselves had arrived. The talks usually ended in the nearest cafe with a drink for which Ricardo Klement had quite an inclination. To get at the secret of his personality, from which he expected to derive a journalistic benefit, Sassen exploited this liking as best he could. And one evening, having drunk a little more than he was accustomed to, as Sassen was going into raptures about the extraordinary exactness of his information, Ricardo Klement let drop the words, "Of course, I am Eichmann himself."

It was a windfall for Sassen. From then on he kept at him about writing his memoirs, but the other never had the time. Then he made the great play:

"I am going to help you. If you want to, instead of dragging these talks on forever in a public place, which will be lost for everyone, we will go somewhere else to drink and we will talk with a microphone. Then after each conversation I will write out what we have said. I will show it to you and you can make any corrections you think advisable. After that I will make a good copy.

"Yes," answered Eichmann, "but on one condition sine qua non. That is that everything which I have gone over and corrected shall not be published until after my death, and the royalties, less the sum for your trouble, are to go to my wife and children."

For greater security a contract on these lines was signed between the two men. Eichmann entrusted it to his best friend -- that very bookshop keeper -- whom he made his testamentary executor and the true owner of the copyright. He charged him with dividing up the royalties in conformity with the stipulations of the contract.

This took place at the end of 1955. The conversations before the [145] microphone lasted for about two years. Put down on paper, they amount to almost two thousand German size typewritten sheets, Before editing, Sassen gave them to Eichmann who covered them with numerous corrections. He wrote over the version that Sassen gave him as the definitive one and even thought that, having gone over it, it was full of imperfections. He considered that it still contained errors, that he had to verify everything and that he needed lots of time because he had to think over events which he suddenly saw were much more indistinct in his memory than he had thought.

"Besides," he thought aloud, "from now until my death we have lots of time..."

So Sassen's work was put aside with Eichmann promising to get on with the verification and to incorporate the necessary corrections as his memory on the past became more exact.

Eichmann was mistaken. He had hardly taken this decision when he was arrested. Meanwhile, Sassen had twice gone to Life to offer sensational revelations on Eichmann's activities. Each time he was told that nothing sensational could be revealed on the subject for the simple reason that it was impossible to centre the attention of the public on a person who had been merely talked about during the Nuremberg Trial but about whom nothing had since been heard. He was surely, therefore, forgotten...

A great many stories were told about the way in which Eichmann had been found and arrested. The long hunt by Mosche Pearlmann gives the credit to Simon Wiesenthal, that incomparable gift to the Israeli Secret Service, with his talent for nosing things out. In my opinion things were really much simpler, but I will refrain from advancing any theory.

The fact remains that the incident which allowed Life to speak of Eichmann, with every chance of grabbing public attention, had happened; that it was able to print in 15,000 words what it described to its readers as a résumé of the essentials of the Sassen-Eichmann talks, the text of which was given to Life by Sassen; and that through Sassen a contract had been drawn up with the beneficiaries and that Sassen had been paid by Life for this work.

For anyone who would like to inspect it, I have a photocopy of the original of these conversations, gone over and corrected by Eichmann. To be sure, Eichmann was not a historian. His knowledge of the events he refers to was very limited, his memory faulty etc., and his talks contain many errors of fact, their dates etc. But I defy anyone at all to find therein justification for most of the monstrous things to be read in Life (November 28th and December 5th, 1960).

How does it happen that I am at one and the same time able to give such precise information and yet be in possession of a photocopy of the document which formed the basis of the Life articles, which I must here add was produced for the prosecution before the tribunal in judgement on Eichmann? It is very simple. The [146] Eichmann family, familiar with my works, thought that Dr. Servatius, defence counsel for Eichmann, might need a historian's advice and begged him to get in touch with me, just in case; and Dr. Servatius had already thought of that himself. All things considered, Dr. Servatius -- on whom rested the responsibility for Eichmann's life and who had had the experience of Nuremberg -- thought that a juridical rather than a historical plea was called for. That was one way of looking at it. But it was, above all, a matter of conscience in which I had no right to interfere. The one thing that strikes me as certain, after the event, is that no matter what plea the defence made -- juridical or historical or both -- Eichmann was in any case to be condemned to death. But who would have dared to burden his conscience with such an assumption before the event, even if he thought it, as I did? That was my case. I could see only one advantage to a historical plea and that was the impossibility of being able to terminate the trial without a delay of, I estimated, at least fifteen good years.

In short it was just circumstantial that I had occasion to meet Sassen, against whom I was unshakeably opposed -- if only because the report of his talks with Eichmann was riddled with errors. I had several talks with him, some of which were very long. Anything that concerns him in what I say is but a translation of what he told me himself.

That is how the photocopy of the original of the conversations came into my hands, and I have been able to study them at leisure. In the same way I have had in my hands the originals of the minutes of the interrogations of Eichmann during the preparations of his trial, whilst he was a prisoner. I am therefore in a position to state that he contradicted what he stated before Sassen's microphone on an infinity of points.

Example: On April 18th, 1961, a witness came forward to the bar at the Jerusalem Tribunal to declare that he had seen "the factory (meaning gas chambers) working at full tilt in July 1942" and Eichmann visibly interested and very satisfied with a report of the results. Eichmann denied this but he had no evidence to support him. It would have sufficed him to say that in July 1942, in the official version, there was no gas chamber (2) at Auschwitz since they were only ordered, as the official documents reveal, on August 8th and installed on February 20th of 1943. Perhaps Eichmann did not know this and, if once he had known, he had surely forgotten. It was probably the same with his counsel. So, the false witness was believed...

Examples of this kind are without number throughout this trial which lasted almost a year.

As for Sassen and the document which he turned over to Life, here is a letter written by Eichmann to his family on February 22nd, 1961, which tells what he thought about it and also about his whole experience:


Dear Robert!

First of all, I appreciate it very much that you managed to get a look at the case Dr. Servatius is preparing for me. I would also like to tell you about some of the fundamental principles which need to be raised, apart from some details which I will mention at the beginning. For I know that you, as my brothers and sisters, will be interested in this, especially as already whole libraries have been occupied with my career and, who knows, will continue to be occupied.

I begin with the current lawsuits which are being brought against me. The contents of these suits are so prodigious that even my anger would be useless. But I must on no account surrender in consideration of the numerous calumnies and defamations and give up the cause without a fight. It is obvious that 15 years of propaganda is against me, which grew like an avalanche and keeps growing and has been leading the minds here to allegations which are quite incomprehensible.

You will hear from Dr. Servatius that more than 1,400 documents are here under consideration (I examined nearly 300 of them during the investigation, the rest was transferred to my defence counsel after the investigation). Among the approximately 300 documents alone which were submitted to me appear approximately 240 different names.

Well, the investigation has caused the collapse of the great sensational build-up that certain groups of journalists had set up out of pure greed for profit; and I hope - naturally enough - that the coming trial will reduce my actual position back to the real level which I held at that time, i.e. recipient of orders; a bureaucratic occupation, not the slightest trace of killing and atrocity.

To be sure, all this has happened, one cannot deny it. But I was not in charge of such things and I kept my hands clean in this matter. This also includes the officers, non-commissioned officers and men, who were under my command at that time. Should the one or the other have overstepped their orders it was not with my authority in this respect.

Now to look at Sassen. He is either secretive or stupid. I do not know myself where I am. I am only asking myself, how can someone contrary to all arrangements commit such a breach of confidence and publish in rough the events which happened in the distant past and throw them to the international press as a kind of raw material which is undoubtedly full of mistakes and incorrectnesses that need to be put right and then say: "There you have the stuff, do with it whatever you like to do. How many dollars do I get?" Contrary to the arrangement which had been made he published the matter to the public without having given me the chance of correcting all the mistakes.

In this respect I have to praise the mode of procedure of the Israeli police; after the tape recording interrogation I had the possibility of hearing it all again and reading the transcript at the same time which had been made in the meantime and could make eventual corrections without being influenced by anyone. Although the transcripts had been made by honest police officers - and there were more than 3,500 typed pages altogether - there were even so quite a large number of hearing mistakes, which partly distorted the sense in the first transcription. Well, thanks to the procedure of the Israeli police all these mistakes could be eliminated by me. Sassen has given me no chance to do the same. I have no guarantee that the person who then copied it, heard and transcribed it correctly and I have no chance to control what certain interested parties might have added to it. At that time I got part of it for the first correction - and I corrected it superficially - but as the transcription was so deficient that there would have been no time left for other work besides the correction, I gave the whole stuff back to Sassen and told him that this matter had to be discussed more thoroughly because of the amount of mistakes. Some parts of the transcriptions were never submitted to me. What is more, this transcription having been controlled by me never should have been published; due to our arrangement and written contract it should [148] represent only the raw material which Sassen could use in order to make a book out of it which could be published. And even there I put in one more security codicil by ordering a written statement that no page of this eventual manuscript should come to be printed without my having sort of legalised and released every page by my full signature. And even after that I should have got the proofs as a last control whereby I agreed here to the fact that after the proofs had been finished no large changes in principle should be allowed.

But such procedures which Sassen has followed are unworthy of an honest journalist and I think this is typical of the fellow. How does this man dare to publish this article under the title: "Adolf Eichmann tells his own story - I conveyed them to the butcher - by Adolf Eichmann"? Sassen is lucky that I am in close confinement. It is a consolation for me to know that even a reader who is only partially attentive to the reading can draw conclusions from the title to the authenticity of the contents of the article. But unfortunately such an article will be read by dull-heads of all kinds, of whom one cannot expect objective, intelligent study.

Now I would like to ask a favour of you. You are a lawyer, I am sure you will discuss this matter with my defence; keep a close eye on Sassen and only with the consent of my defence should he be allowed to publish anything at all. For all he is going to publish forces him to fall back upon the treasure of the tape recordings of that time and there are solid arrangements which he has to observe.

Surely, there are legal restraints and possibilities? Besides this, I leave it completely to my defence to prepare the next steps which he considers necessary as far as my cause is concerned.

Dear Robert, I do not know what will come out of this trial; in respect to my person I must tell you that I am only of secondary importance. With the help of my defence I will naturally take pains to bring out the truth about the 15 years' calumnies and imputations, up to the very last days, which have prejudiced public opinion around the world against me to a-degree which is not to be outdone. Here, too, I do not think of surrender. As far as only my own ego is concerned, the danger of resignation is great in respect to my almost overstrained fatalism. But I must not leave the matter as it is; not when I think about my children and you as my brothers and sisters and, last but not least, the memory of our dead father.

Dear brothers and sisters, I wish you each and all happy Easter, I wish you health and send you my kindest regards.

Your Adolf.

I have asked lawyer Wechtenbruch to certify the correctness of this statement by signature, because I, separated by a glass wall, cannot sign it personally.

Given in a prison of the State of Israel on the 22nd February, 1961.


5. The Last Word

If the reader has been harbouring any doubt about the political significance of the trial, as described above, and the anti-Semitism it bred on the pretext of combatting it, it will suffice to say that many good people thought the same way. Over the French radio itself, the first press review of the reports of the first day of the trial gave the impression that in the minds of all the journalists there, without exception, the dominant idea was that the performance was not a matter of justice but of pure and simple vengeance, and that in any case, it was politically a mistake.

Eight days later, already sure of what to expect from the hearings, all the great newspapers of the world recalled the best [149] legal reporters they had sent to Jerusalem, in order to despatch them to more important trials.

On April 10th, under the title "This trial is a mistake," and over M. Alain Guinay's signature, France-Soir did not hesitate to say:

"There are a certain number of people who think that this whole trial has been a mistake. That far from eradicating anti-Semitism in the world it will only fan the flames, that far from instructing Israeli youth in the tragic fate of their elders, it will keep that aggressive youth from feeling any solidarity with those six millions who for the most part died without defending themselves.

"They are also afraid that it will have a detrimental effect on Israeli-British, perhaps even United States-Israeli relations, by revealing, as Ben Gurion has just done, that neither London nor Washington did a thing to save millions of people whom they could have saved."

We have seen how Ben Gurion failed in his attempt to involve Britain and the United States in his attempt to blackmail Germany.

With the trial over and Eichmann condemned, "the uneasiness" which everyone talked about remains. The anti-Semitic campaigns feared by France-Soir are taking steps and grow.

A boomerang? Perhaps.

Perhaps Tel-Aviv needs a little wave of anti-Semitism from time to time to realise its objectives, if only to bring to Israel those millions of Jews who persist in preferring the comforts of western life to the rigours of kibbutzim.

In any case, if the stirring of anti-Semitic feeling should trouble Israel and international Zionism, it is not the reasons adduced for the sentence that condemned Eichmann to death which will prevent them from assuming greater proportion, as they have been revived for us by M. Poliakov (Le Procès de Jérusalem, Paris, 1963) (The Jerusalem Trial). Assuredly not.

A strange fellow this M. Poliakov. An Israelite, born at St. Petersburg (Leningrad) in 1910, M. Léon Poliakov is directly descended from that generation of Russians chased from their homes by a Revolution which made Russia what we know it to be today and who, since 1920, have given Paris so many picturesque -- and sometimes so encumbering -- taxi drivers; people of all social levels. (But, to hear them talk, all of noble extraction!) Having arrived with the very first wave of refugees at the age of six, therefore too young to learn to drive, his parents sent him to a primary school in the 10th Arrondissement. He developed a taste for studies, went to the Lycée, then for several years to law school. His biographers tell us that this led him, not to the bar, as it does so many others, but... into journalism! And so one does not meet this 52-year-old man today at the wheel of a taxi in the streets of Paris, but at the Centre for Contemporary Jewish Documentation, with the title of historian. To him we owe already: Le IIIe Reich et les Juifs, Histoire de l'antisémitisme (The 150 Third Reich and the Jews, History of Anti-Semitism), and the celebrated Bréviaire de la Haine (Breviary of Hatred). This Procès de Jérusalem (Jerusalem Trial) is the fourth feather in his historian's cap.

He is very much at ease in this role, and Mr. Ben Gurion, President of the Council of State of Israel, has overlooked nothing in making his task easier. Indeed, we know that on December 21st, 1962, Mr. Ben Gurion decided that the memoirs (2,700 pages) which Eichmann wrote during his period of detention in Israel between the trial which condemned him to death and his execution, were to be turned over to the State Archives of Israel instead of being given to his widow which, if not the rule, is at least customary usage in all the courts of the free world. This decision ensures that for a long time to come all the Poliakovs of the world will be able to say whatever comes into their heads about the Eichmann affair, without risk of being contradicted by the contrary version of the historical facts of the matter. It also ensures that the judgement itself can never be questioned on grounds of any documents other than those very carefully selected ones used by the prosecution. The real historians who followed the trial will, of course, some day be given consideration, but thanks to this procedure, only by a posterity whose grasp of history becomes less firm as time goes on. Meanwhile, to public opinion, the judgement of the Jerusalem Tribunal has all the force of revealed truth.

And what truth!

M. Poliakov does not, in the first place, give us the whole text of the judgement. Of the 243 arguments in evidence which it contains, more than half do not figure in his book. He does not tell us why this is so, but one can be sure that they are the most questionable ones. As for those which he does give, one or two examples will be enough to give the reader an idea of their worth.

First example: the one based on the function of the Einsatzgruppen (units protecting the rear of the German armies as they advanced into Russia). These units were created, the Nuremberg court said, in the middle of May 1941 in anticipation of the Russian campaign. In the Bréviaire de la Haine, M. Poliakov proves to us with brilliance, with documents and testimonies to support him, that these units could only have been created at that date. Today, no less brilliantly and with no fewer documents and testimonies to support him, he proves to us that they already existed on September 12th, 1939. M. Chaim Wiezmann, President of the Jewish Agency in 1939, who was then living in London and whose personal papers are collected at Rehowoth (Israel), decided it. (3) The Jerusalem Tribunal followed suit, and M. Poliakov too, of [151] course. If, some day, Israel decides that Einsatzgruppen were created by Ramses Il and that Hitler only returned to a very old practice, M. Poliakov will be ready to prove that it could not be otherwise, with documents and testimonies to support him; that goes without saying. Since 1945, the industry of document and testimony production has been exceedingly prosperous, and Israel challenges Russia for first place in the world.

Is another example needed? Take the document called "Gerstein" which has been referred to. In the Bréviaire de la Haine, M. Poliakov gave us a version which he said was authentic and, moreover, he had corrected it. The Tribunal of Jerusalem brought forth yet another version which is different from the two already known. The latter was written in a kind of pidgin language and does not agree in any respect with the other two, doubtless so that it could not be said that it had been rejected at Nuremberg as had been the case with the first one. The reader is strongly urged to read the two principle versions of this document, in the last chapter of The Drama of the European Jews. There he will see of what prowess a Frenchman born in Russia is capable, who was driven to become a historian because he failed to become a taxi driver.

There is no end to the list of documents of this kind on which the Jerusalem Tribunal based its conviction, and M. Poliakov corrects his own contentions by first correcting the documents, whose origin is, furthermore, more than dubious. The court itself is not free from contradictions of this kind. Take exhibit No. 63, for example, which declares Eichmann guilty of having forced the German Jews to emigrate, and No. 155, of having prevented them from emigrating, in terms as scathing and disapproving in one as in the other. The cynical and cruel giants who, according to the philosophy professors of my generation, only gave one the choice between dying on the altar of Truth or the altar of Lies, with the choice the only chance to escape the trial, were no more cynical and cruel than the Judges of Jerusalem.

We will have no more to say about this book and the judgement after this, which will be our conclusion:

1) Exhibit No. 79 says, among other things, "We will describe the activities against the Jews within the Reich and the European countries under German influence, exclusive of what took place in eastern Europe. In general, no extermination activity took place in those countries or in Germany..."

After the Declaration of August 19th, 1960, which was taken up in another connection by the Institut für Zeitgeschichte at [152] Munich, here is one that authenticates in a masterly manner the thesis which I have maintained for so long on gas chambers in German concentration camps. Carelessness, no doubt.

2) Exhibit No. 161, after stating that the number of victims cannot be designated except by the term "millions" which is that of the indictment, nevertheless declares that "it is beyond doubt that the number of victims was about 6 million."

By counting the Jews who died in 1941, in No. 122; in the camps set up in March 1942, in No. 141; who were taken to camps in convoys of 3,000, No. 112; when No. 127 says 2,000, and No. 154 only 1,000, etc. doubtless one could arrive at even more surprising results.

Eichmann's Last Speech

In matters of justice, it is a rule: the last word always belongs to the accused. Here then is what Eichmann, condemned to death by hanging, declared to the Judges of Jerusalem on December 13th, 1961:

"I have heard the severe sentence of the Court. My hope for justice has been disappointed. I cannot accept this decision.

I know that punishment is demanded for the crimes committed against the Jews. The declarations made by the witnesses here in this Court have astounded me, as I was similarly stupified to see myself considered responsible for the atrocities.

I was unfortunate enough to have been mixed up in these horrors. But, these misdeeds were not of my own doing. It was not my desire to kill people. These mass murders are solely the consequence of the Fuhrer's policy.

I tried to give up my job, to leave for the front so that I could fight honourably, but I was kept at obscure tasks.

Let me emphasise once again:

My fault lies in my obedience, my submission to my task and to the requirements of my war office to which I was committed under oath. Since the start of the war, the law of warfare alone prevailed. This submission was not easy, and anyone who has commanded and obeyed knows what can be required of a man.

I pursued the Jews with neither enthusiasm nor pleasure. The government did that. As for the prosecution, only a government could make that decision, never I.

I accuse those governing of having abused my obedience. At that time, obedience was required, just as it was later from the subalterns.

Obedience was elevated to a virtue. On this subject, may I ask you to consider that I obeyed and not whom I obeyed. I repeat: the authorities, of which I was not a part, gave the orders; they imposed atrocious tasks upon me which, on their orders, were to result in victims.

But now, the subalterns are also victims. I am one of these victims. This cannot be lost sight of. It is said that I could have refused to obey and that I should have done so. This is a consideration after the fact. Under the circumstances of the moment, this was impossible. It could not have been any different for anyone.

I know from experience that the legend must be kept alive, as it was done after the war, that it was possible to resist orders.

A few men were able to go into hiding, but I was not among those who thought that this was conceivable.

It is a grave mistake to think that I belonged to the fanatic persecutors of the Jews.


Since the end of the war, it has outraged me to note that all the responsibility of my superiors and of the others has fallen on my shoulders. I have to all appearances done nothing which would allow me to be accused of fanaticism, and the responsibility for this crime of blood does not fall to me. This is where the witnesses have gone against the truth. The declarations and documents presented to the Court as a whole at first sight seem convincing, but are untrue.

I shall try, in the next few minutes, to clarify these errors. No one came to me warning me of my behaviour. Not even the witness Probst Gruber could support the opposite. He visited me and wanted only to obtain certain alleviations, without criticising my professional activity itself. He confirmed here, in the Court, that I did not refuse him, but that I explained to him that I would have to have the opinion of my superiors since I could not make the decision myself.

On this matter, we have Ministry Director Loesener who reported on Jewish questions to the Ministry of the Interior (Judenreferent). He is dead. In a recently published memoir, he indicates that he was aware of the atrocities and that he informed his superiors of them. It must, therefore, be admitted that everyone at the Ministry of the Interior knew of these methods. But no one stood in opposition to my superiors. Ministry Director Loesener closeted himself in silent opposition and served his Führer as a wise Judge in the Reich's Legal Administration. Herein appears in its true light the civic courage of an important personality.

In a report written in 1950, Loesener gave an appreciation of myself by which I would have been one of the main perpetrators of Jewish persecution. But nothing is found in these violent sentiments which would support these suppositions, nor any basis for these allegations. This also holds true for the other witnesses.

The Judge asked me if I wished to plead guilty, as had Hoess, the Auschwitz commander and the Governor General of Poland, Frank. Both had the same reason for acting as they did: Frank, responsible for the orders he had given, was afraid of being accused by his subordinates, while Hoess was the one who had actually carried out the mass executions.

My position is different, I never had either the capability or the responsibility of someone who gave orders. I never had to deal with murder, as had Hoess. If I had received the order to perform these massacres, I would not have taken refuge behind false pretexts; I explained this during my interrogation: if I had found myself faced with an order which I could not carry out, I would have put a bullet through my head in order to resolve the conflict between my conscience and my duty.

The Court feels that my present attitude is dictated by the requirements of my case in this trial. There is a group of points which would seem to confirm this. The apparent contradictions result from the fact that I was not able to recall precisely all the details at the very beginning of the police interrogation. I lived through too many things that year.

I did not refuse to reply: the preliminary report of 3,500 pages shows this. It was my duty to assist in the explanation of the facts. Mistakes or errors occurred, but I have to rectify them. I cannot be reproached for such errors when a 16 to 20 year period is in question, and my spirit of cooperation must not be taken as trickery and lying.

My rule for living, which I was taught very early, was the will and ambition to attain an ethic of honour.

After a certain period, Reasons of State prevented me from following this path. I had to choose outside this ethic and commit myself to another of the multiple paths of morality. I had to bend myself to the requirements of the reversal of all values by virtue of Reasons of State.

I undertook my own self-criticism, I accused my conscience, an area which is only the province of my Inner Self. Considering myself legally not guilty, I neglected totally to take into account this point of view in this examination.


I would now like to ask the Jewish people for their forgiveness, to confess the shame which overcomes me at the idea of the injustices committed with regard to them and the deeds undertaken against them. Nevertheless the basis for this judgement appears to me false. I am not the barbarian I have been made to seem. I am the victim of an argumentation: I was seized in Buenos Aires, kept tied up on a bed for a full week, then given an injection in my arm, and taken to the Buenos Aires airport; from there I left Argentina by plane. It is completely obvious taking only this into account, that I was considered responsible for everything.

It all rests on the fact that a few socialist nations today, and others, spread calumnies about me. They wanted to place their guilt on me or humiliate me for reasons which escape me. A certain element of the press has been, regarding these incredible and false assertions, making suggestive propaganda for fifteen years.

This is the basis for this unjust condemnation.

This is the reason for my presence here.

I thank my defence lawyer who made himself responsible for my rights.

It is my deep conviction that I am paying for what others have done.

I must accept what fate has placed in store for me."

Obviously there is nothing remarkable about this statement of innocence and one risks little in saying that it probably will not go down in posterity.

Condemned to death in the last century by mistake, the innocent Lesurques declared: "I appeal to posterity." Not everyone can be Lesurques.

Furthermore, Eichmann was only a little Lieutenant-Colonel, of little culture, just like thousands of others, and perhaps tens of thousands in the German army, just as there are hundreds of thousands in the armies of the world.

I think it will cause one to smile today to learn that one man, responsible for all that can be charged to National Socialism in matters of crimes against humanity, was a simple Lieutenant-Colonel. Nevertheless it is so. In this direction, Mr. W. Kempner, former police commissioner for Prussia and American prosecutor at one of the Nuremberg trials, went so far as to call his book on the subject not Hitler and Accomplices, but Eichmann and Accomplices, which tends to show that it was not Eichmann who was an accomplice of Hitler, but the other way around!

What is tragic is that if one compares his explanation, or justification, of his attitude with that given by Prof. Balachowsky of the Pasteur Institute, a cultivated man (or at least he has no excuse for not being, covered with honours and all), one is obliged to agree that... it is not so bad after all. Between the Reasons of State to which the troubled conscience of the more or less untutored Lieutenant-Colonel referred itself, and the single anxiety to save his skin invoked by the Professor with the clear conscience, men of good sense - and even those who, like me, put Reason of Man before Reason of State - will not hesitate in their choice.

The reader will not be asked to compare this declaration, nor the charges formally made by the Israeli prosecutor, nor the legal and moral justifications of the decision rendered by the Tribunal; the contrast would be even more disheartening.




Chapter VIII


On December 17th, 1960, in the region of Hamburg where he had lived under a false name for more than fifteen years, the German police arrested a man whom they quickly discovered was none other than Obersturmnbannführer Richard Baer, who had been, from the Ist of December 1943 until the 25th of February 1945 - the date of his evacuation as the Russian troops approached - the second and last commandant of Auschwitz concentration camp. We know that from the 14th of June 1940, when it was opened, until the Ist of December 1943, the first commandant of that camp was Obersturmbannführer Rudolf Hoess, (4) universally known today through the subversive publicity campaign (as vast as it is unscrupulous) created around the publication of his memoirs in five languages, under the title The Commandant of Auschwitz speaks (published in French by Julliard, 1959).

From April to May 1946, Hoess docilely authenticated before the Nuremberg Tribunal (although with innumerable contradictions) some of the most improbable accusations brought against Germany concerning war crimes and crimes against humanity. Despite this, Rudolf Hoess was condemned to death on the 2nd of April 1947 by the High Polish Tribunal for having, the judgement states, "participated in the assassination by asphyxiation in gas chambers, incineration of living persons, shooting, fatal injections, medical experiments, starvation, etc. of 2,812,000 persons, most of them Jews."

"...the next day after, April 4th, he was hanged there at Auschwitz."

Then they examined his successor on whose conscience weighed the charge of having done his spell in that horrible extermination and who had brought the total number of victims to an indeterminate figure, but generally estimated in concentration camp literature to be about 4 million Jews. Having finally been found, he was at once put in the prison at Frankfurt and his preliminary investigation was begun.

This investigation was not easy: it seems that from the very first the ex-Obersturmbannführer declared that there had never been any gas chamber at Auschwitz while he was in command, that he had only heard mention of it - an echo of a rumour from the Nuremberg Trials, where he had hidden himself - and that he had gone into hiding not because he felt any guilt, but so as not [156] to fall into the hands of some misguided lover of justice. Fritz Bauer, the prosecuting attorney in charge of the investigation, brought up the statements of Rudolf Hoess at Nuremberg and in his memoirs; Baer replied that he did not know what had taken place during the command of Hoess, that he could only answer for what had happened when he was in command, and he mentioned witnesses. One after another the prosecuting attorney had them charged with complicity and imprisoned. Today there are 23 of them who have been appearing over and over again, since December 20th, 1963, before the Court of Assizes (Schwergericht) at Frankfurt.

But right to the end Baer stuck to his position and they were never able to budge him from it. Nor have they ever succeeded in bringing the slightest proof against him. One serious problem followed. Was prosecuting attorney Bauer to be obliged to agree that the "434,351 Hungarian Jews, deported to Auschwitz in 147 trains, from the 16th of May to the 8th of July 1944" -- as exhibit 112 of the Jerusalem trial attests -- had not been exterminated by gas? He was not to be budged from his charge either. However, the trial, scheduled for the autumn of 1961, was first postponed to the spring of 1962, a second time to the autumn of 1962, a third time to the spring of 1963, and a fourth time to the spring of 1964. Suddenly, on June 17th 1963, prosecuting attorney Bauer announced that, although nothing could have led them to suspect it possible (a few days previously, Baer's wife, who had visited him in prison, had found him quite healthy and full of confidence that he would soon be released on "no grounds"), Baer had died of heart failure; less than a week later it was learned from the same source that the Auschwitz trial could be moved up from the spring of 1964 to the beginning of the winter of 1963.

So, since the 20th of December, 1963, this bewildering trial has been going on with no end in sight. With the principal accused person dead, the gain for the prosecution is that the 250 prosecution witnesses (escapees from Auschwitz and most of them former members of the 'self-government' of the camp) can come before the bar and say just about anything without fear of being shown up. What is curious is that during his imprisonment at Frankfurt from the 17th of December 1960 until the 17th of June 1963, Richard Baer was interrogated without interruption during the entire period, and yet not a word of what he said has been brought forth at the Frankfurt trial. Surely nothing could have been more natural on the part of the public prosecutor if he was anxious not to furnish the defence with arguments.

But on the part of the defence?

1. The situation of the Jews after the armistice of 1940

From 1933 to 1939, through diplomatic channels Germany had vainly tried to obtain from Britain permission for the transfer of [157] all the Jews in Germany to Palestine. But, on the claim which the international Zionist movement has been making since 1895, through the voice and pen of Theodor Herzl, which Hitler thought a little adjustment of the Balfour Declaration of November 2nd, 1917 could bring about, the British had always categorically refused. It was incompatible with her Middle-East policy, over which the Versailles Treaty had given her the upper hand; it was contrary to the national aspirations of the Arabs; then again, since the date of the birth of Israel as a State - May 16th, 1948 - there has been daily proof that it was not a reasonable proposition.

From the collapse of the French military force on July 10th, 1940, and the armistice, the leaders of the Third Reich nourished the hope of another solution to the Jewish problem. The government of Marshal Pétain reflected an opinion current in France since 1937, complaining that the under-population of Madagascar suffered to the point that its economic progress was irreparably threatened. Why should they not, then, allow all the Jews in the area occupied by German troops at that time to be transported there? So, from July 10th Germany sounded Vichy out about this.

The story of these probings is told in detail in a document dated September 24th, 1942, under the signature of the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of the Third Reich, Martin Luther, which was produced at the Nuremberg Trial on the 2nd of April, 1946, number P.S. 3688. There we read that Pierre-Etienne Flandin, who had succeeded Pierre Laval to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after December 13th, 1940, refused to hear anything about it. Knowing Hitler's views, Otto Abetz informed him of this immediately after the 13th, but Hitler was not disturbed; his plan was to get Marshal Pétain to get rid of Flandin, known for his "Anglophilism," and Hitler had no doubt that he would succeed. He made no changes to his policy of the moment with regard to the European Jews because he expected the Vichy government, sooner or later, to put Madagascar at their disposal.

When Flandin did leave on the 10th of February, 1941, such soundings were resumed. The area occupied by German troops then included, besides Germany and Austria reconsituted into the Greater Reich (Gross Deutschland) the following:

-- to the East, Bohemia-Moravia, set up as a Protectorate, by dismembering Czechoslovakia, from which Slovakia had been taken to form an independent state under German control, and a good half of Poland;

-- to the West, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg and France, up to the demarcation line which cut her in two.

In all, how many Jews?

None, to speak of, in Bohemia-Moravia; they had almost all fled into Slovakia whence, not feeling safe because of being within reach of National Socialism, they fled gradually toward Palestine by the route of the Danube, via non-occupied Hungary, Rumania and Bulgaria, which were not hostile to them. This took place [158] slowly because there was the problem of currency, which in turn involved the problem of passports. In April 1939, Britain had decided to authorise free entry into Palestine only of those Jews who had £1,000 sterling (about 1,500,000 old francs) in their pockets, and to limit to 1,500 persons per year all those who did not possess such a sum. Further, Germany was quite willing to let go all the Jews in the area occupied by her or under her control, but was unalterably opposed to their taking with them the required £1,000. Given this, although it was easy for any Jew to get £1,000 (the Jewish communities were rich), it was much harder to get a passport. To achieve this it was necessary to get to Budapest where, as Joël Brand tells us in his book One Million Jews for Ten Thousand Trucks, the Committee for the Safety of Jews mass-produced passports and distributed them freely. If one was willing to arrive in Hungary naked as a worm, there was no problem; the Germans closed their eyes on the Polish and Slovak-Hungarian frontiers. But if one wanted to get there with £1,000 or the equivalent, which was legitimately and generally the case, the problem arose of having to cross the frontier secretly, which involved long preparations and slowed the migration down.

After surmounting this difficulty, another presented itself: on actually going into Palestine there was the problem of the false passport obtained in Budapest. If the British discovered the fraud the migrant was turned back even though in possession of the £1,000, and there was nothing left but to go the way of Central Asia, to reach Birobidjan, the autononous Jewish state within the framework of the Soviet Union. The region of Auschwitz was under discussion at the Wannsee Conference, and Eichmann, when the Madagascar idea fell through, proposed to create a Jewish state there along the lines laid down by Herzl. With Himmler's assent, he began to gather together several tens of thousands of Jews, from the spring of 1941 on. This project, called 'nisko', was vehemently held against him in exhibit 72 at the Jerusalem trial.

Preliminary camps were set up, beginning with Auschwitz, and preparatory installations to receive millions... Crematory ovens were built, showers etc., which were called gas chambers. This is stretching things a bit far, especially in view of the admission by Kubovy (Director of the Centre for Contemporary Jewish Documentation at Tel Aviv) that no order for the extermination of the Jews was ever given by the authorities of the Third Reich.

2. The Number of Victims

A total, we "know, " of six million. At least the international Zionist press claims so, and the other press, in which the financiers of the Diaspora have sufficient power to determine its position to suit their theses, does not hinder them. Six million exterminated, in gas chambers, ill treatment, shot or beaten to death when captured by the Einsatzgruppen.

Referring to this point on November 21st, 1945 at Nuremberg, the American prosecutor Jackson was a little more modest: "Of the nine million Jews who were living in Nazi dominated Europe, it is estimated that 60% lost their lives: 5,700,000 Jews are missing from the countries in which they lived before and more than 4,500,000 cannot be accounted for either by the normal death rate, or the rate of immigration into 'other countries'."

How many at Auschwitz?

The most divergent figures -- and the most fantastic, too -- have been produced by the historians and statisticians of the World Centre for Contemporary Jewish Documentation: "Birkenau," writes one of them named Henri Michel coldly, "was the most international and the most western of the death factories, and its ground is enriched with the ashes of four million bodies."

Almost the sum total, then, of the number of European Jews accounted as missing at Nuremberg by Mr. Jackson!

But, in his memoirs, Hoess gives the following details on the total number of internees in that camp:

From Upper Silesia, or Polish Gov.


From Germany and Theresienstadt


From Holland


From Belgium


From France


From Greece


From Hungary


From Slovakia




It is certainly obvious that if there was a total of only 1,130,000 Jews deported to Auschwitz, it was not possible for the Germans to have 'exterminated' more than that number. It is doubtless for this reason that, in a brochure published in 1961 in New York, the Institute of Jewish Affairs of the World Jewish Congress says that "900,000 Jews perished in this camp." (Eichmann Confederates and the Third Hierarchy, p. 13).

At the Frankfurt Trial on the 17th of February, 1964, Dr. Broszat, Director of the Institut für Zeitgeschichte at Munich, estimated the number of Jews dead at Auschwitz "at about one million." (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 18th February, 1964) (5).

But the press continues imperturbably to write "four million." (Le Figaro littéraire, April 4th, 1964 under the signature of M. Martin-Chauffier, member of the Institut, and Le Figaro, January 16th, 1965, under that of M. Remy Roure).

3. The Development of the Trial

As far as the Frankfurt Trial is concerned, after a year of proceedings during which almost all the witnesses for the [160] prosecution have come before the bar, things are just where they were when they started and truth has not made one step forward. There is no question here of reporting the trial session by session which would be impossible for me to do in any case. Indeed, it is known that in order to prevent me from getting at the sources directly, the German government gave me permission to be present at the hearings but forbade me to go into Germany! When I presented myself at the German frontier with all my papers in order, I was directly turned back to the French frontier. I was, therefore, only able to follow things from a distance. However, thanks to an information service which I succeeded in organising and the important press service to which I subscribed, I had a fairly accurate picture of things. This is what I noted at the end of the fifth week of hearings, on the 16th of January 1964. On 16th of January 1965, that is, after a year of hearings, I have practically nothing to add or modify.

It can easily be seen, I said, that at the rate of two proceedings per week, at the most three, this trial will have a lot of trouble getting under way: at the beginning of the fifth week it certainly is not under way. From what little can be read about it in the papers, the special observers at it are in consternation: from the evening of the first day, it was obvious to them that they would be around for a while with the 250-odd witnesses for the prosecution which they were to hear. The 22 indicted men, on the other hand, posed another problem: on the eve of the first hearing, when they presented themselves to the secretary of the court to obtain the card entitling them to be present at the hearings, they were handed a resumé of the indictment which gave them goose flesh when they read it. Hundreds of children cold-bloodedly assassinated with phenol injections into the heart; girls thrown live into the crematory ovens; bullets in the back of the neck; the see-saw of death, etc. with a backdrop of gas chambers and millions of Jews killed. They were prepared for the sensational; I am sure that on reading all that, Madame Madeleine Jacob -- called the Hyena of the Liberation -- must have drooled. And then there they were the next day, confronted by 22 people with the comfortable look of ordinary middle class citizens, and they saw right away that it would take much more imagination than they had to be original and sensational in their articles.

This has been going on for a month now; at yesterday's hearing, the 'corner' -- because it is a corner and not a bench -- of the journalists was considerably thinned out, since many of them gave up trying to find anything interesting in this business. Let us render unto Caesar: after having listened to the interrogations of identity and main issues, among those who remain -- a little more than half of the 120 anticipated by the court -- who with few exceptions talk of asking their editors to recall them for other assignments, the dominant feeling is that now, twenty years after the war, the problem brought up by this trial should have been [161] settled long ago by amnesty.

And now for the facts:

Whatever there is that is sensational about the examinations of identity and main issues, it is not provided by the accused but by the President of the Tribunal who directs the hearings and the methods he uses, more than the charges he lists. The 200 children whom a single man (on Christmas Eve 1944) injected with phenol directly to the heart, the girl another threw alive into the crematory, shots from the revolver into the neck, one after the other, etc., it is clear that these are not the crux of the hearing. The main issue which will be the centre of interest is the gas chambers and the six million Jews allegedly killed in them.

This is the way the President stated the matter at the first meeting:

At Birkenau (one of the three camps of the great complex of Auschwitz, which also included Auschwitz 3 km. away and Monowitz 6 km away) there were gas chambers and, periodically, in the three camps of the complex, a selection was made of thousands of Jews to be sent there to be gassed. Toward the end, in 1944, selections were even made right on the platform where the trains carrying the deportees arrived. Did you order these selections, or participate in them, he asks of each one of the accused.

The question is subtle; he does not ask them if they sent these thousands of Jews to the gas chambers in question or if they participated in the exterminations, but only if they ordered or participated in the selections.

The inevitable answer is yes.

But in each case, as the interrogation continues, it is seen that not one of the accused knew that there were gas chambers at Birkenau. nor that the purpose of the selections was to send the Jews there. Now, among them there are two assistants to the two successive heads of the complex. There is even a Polish prisoner, Bednarec, who was a block chief and who participated with zeal, so they seem to divine. One wonders why all the prisoner block chiefs of the camp, who were all in his position - there are thousands all living and with a few exceptions all Jews - are not, like him, on the bench of the accused. The answer: this one is not a Jew. On this bench, if he had not died during preliminary investigation, might have sat one of the two heads of the camp; at the hearing of January 11th it is learned that he, too, had stated that he had never known there were gas chambers at Birkenau. Strange, to say the least... And those selections? Their purpose seems to have been to separate those fit for work from those unable to work, the latter to be sent to special camps set up for them. This came out of the interrogation of Robert Mulka (today one of the big men in the export-import business in Hamburg) and of Hoecker, both of them assistants - one to the first commandant of the complex (Hoess, hanged at Auschwitz by the Poles on [162] April 4th, 1947) and the other of the second (Baer, died during investigation).

As to the psychology of the accused: they gradually decided that it would be to the interest to seek the court's indulgence and thus began to mention having 'heard' of unmentionable goings-on 'inside' camps; to interfere would maybe have cost them their lives, etc. The press could not have asked for better; more important than the accused, the big thing is to accuse the whole of Germany to justify astronomical indemnities... Once started on this track the accused are ready to state practically anything, fantastic figures of arrivals etc., that no one, not even the defence, picks up. But the press repeats these nonsensical figures. No individual is to blame, just all of Germany, the government, hence every person. Every journalist was sitting like the French Revolutionary knitters. The prosecutor tried to make Breidweiser confess he had participated in gassing, but at a date when the camp had not even been set up; he was so confused that he obviously knew nothing about anything.

On February 6th, this is what I noted in the hearings that had taken place since January 16th. Are we finally getting at the truth? The case of Breidweiser came up much sooner than anticipated. He had been in the S.S., the only one on whom rests the charge of having actually participated in gas extermination of 850 Soviet prisoners of war.

"Me, sure, I handled Zyklon B, but to disinfect clothing, not to asphyxiate people! "

And he proceeds to describe Zyklon B and how it works. Thus we learn that this famous gas, which until now has been described as "pellets from which gas was freed on contact with air" (this was said by some at Nuremberg), "on contact with steam" (said by others before the same Tribunal), was in reality in the form of a "liquid within a capsule," very volatile.

Since this testimony showed up the false testimony given by all the witnesses for the prosecution in all the trials of this kind which have taken place during the previous twenty years, President Hoffmaier shifted abruptly.

I looked back at my documentation and learn that Zyklon B was an insecticide used in the German army since 1924 and that during the Second World War, it had been used not only in the army, but in all the health programmes of the Third Reich and in all the concentration camps. On January 30th, 1946 at Nuremberg, evidence was admitted against the accused consisting of two invoices for this gas, dated 30th May 1944, one for Auschwitz and the other for Oranienburg. But at Oranienburg there were no gas chambers. (Report of Hearings, Volume 27, p. 740-42).

Question: What did they do with Zyklon B at Oranienburg since they did no asphyxiating there? It seem that one cannot find anywhere irrefutable proof that the government of the Third Reich never thought of using Zyklon B to exterminate the Jews.

Did they exterminate them in this manner at Auschwitz? First, this still has to be proved. And second, if it is proved, the problem of these exterminations will have to be looked at from quite another angle than it has been presented up to now - without the knowledge of the authorities of the Third Reich, as I have already pointed out. At the same time, the role played in these horrors by the 'self-government' of the camp will have to be brought up, if all the Breidweisers accused can prove that they were brought to trial for nothing.

Now we can understand why President Hoffmaier did not insist. Moreover this was the second time, the first having occurred during the questioning of the accused Hans Stark, the preceding Friday. The latter, in fact, did tell that he had executed five or six deportees with a bullet in the back of the head. "They arrived," he said, "at the camp under a sentence of death given them by the regularly consituted courts of the Third Reich and I had been assigned to the squad." And that is how it is with all those assigned to firing squads.

Pushed further, the accused Hans Stark had also admitted "having thrown little pellets of Zyklon B into the crematory through holes made in the roof." The same operation described by Breidweiser, who had told us that Zyklon B came in the form of liquid within capsules. Breidweiser was supported by Dilewsky, who had watched from a distance, But, 'in little pellets,' says Stark.

The President could only become more and more embarrassed. But what embarrased him most was Prosecutor Kugler, who sustained the accusation and who was the same age as the accused Hans Stark. In 1943 they were both 17 years old and both were members of the Nazi Party. One had been sent to the S.S. at Auschwitz (Hans Stark), the other (Kugler) to a regiment of Alpine Chasseurs in Italy. The first is today a university professor (agronomy) and indicted. The other a magistrate, and... judges, face to face, after having been so long side by side. The latter had the good luck not to have been assigned to a firing squad, at least as far as we know. The next day, he confided to the representative of France-Soir: "Happily I never had to take part in one of those operations! " Indeed ...

And happily, too, for Mr. Eugen Gerstenmaier (today President of the Bundestag) and Heinrich Luebke (today President of the Federal Republic), who were also important persons under Hitler and warmly approved his policies. The first was a member of the Nazi Party (on mission in a university during the war). As for the second, his case was much more serious: head of an industrial outfit working on the manufacture of the V1 and V2, using manpower detailed from the half starved deportees of the Peenemunde concentration camp (Baltic). And he has never appeared among the accused at any trial of the Frankfurt kind for participation in the horrors of the Peenemunde concentration camp!


February 20th:

It is over; all the accused have been interrogated, the first phase of the trial is over. The Tribunal relaxed and did not resume until last Monday, the 17th of February, for the good reason that at Frankfurt, as at Nice, the Carnival is sacred.

At the moment -- and this will go on until February 24th -- specialists are being heard from the Institute of Contemporary History at Munich, that world paragon of anti-Nazi resistance. They have been brought here as experts to authenticate the written testimonies whose authors are dead or are unable to appear for public reading. It is not without interest to note that these are the very same experts whom I forced to admit on August 19th, 1960 that there had "never been any gas chamber in any concentration camp in the territory of the Grand Reich." And they had, until then, maintained the opposite.

February 17th, the first witness was heard - and the most important witness for the prosecution: Mr. Hermann Langbein, Austrian Israelite, Secretary General of the International Committee of the Survivors of Auschwitz. The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on the 27th of January had published with a trumpet blast an article about him that was, in my view, the sensation of the week.

First by its title: "Capacity of the crematory ovens at Auschwitz -- 4756 bodies a day." Precise. But, in 1951, this capacity was set at 20,000 bodies per day, on oath before the courts at that time of a dead Hungarian doctor named Miklos Nyiszli, whose detailed testimony was published in France by Les Temps Modernes (March and April, 1951).

But this article was even more surprising. It said that Mr. Hermann Langbein had been interned for two years at Auschwitz, where he carried on the duties of secretary to S.S. Dr. Wirths, the one directly in charge of gas extermination, and that in that camp there was such an insufficiency of food (1,800 calories a day provided for by the R.S.H.A.) that one could not survive for more than four months unless one 'organised' -- in the lingo of the camps 'organise' meant to steal right and left, bread here, margarine there, soup somewhere else, etc.

But Mr. Hermann Langbein survived for two years. Conclusion: he 'organised' food -- food taken from the rations of the other prisoners. Not surprising: to be secretary to Dr. Wirths meant that he was part of the 'self-government' of the camp, that group of prisoners who assumed administration and policing -- and whose' main occupation consisted in helping itself first to the 1,800 calorie rations which arrived every day at the camp, to get 3,000 to 4,000 for themselves, thus condemning the mass of prisoners to exist on 600, 800 or 1,000 calories; in other words, to die of hunger little by little.

I am not the one who is saying all this, it is Mr. Langbein who admits it himself; if he survived for two years in a camp where [165] one could not live more than four months on the allocated rations, except by stealing food from one's companions in prison, the obvious conclusion is that he was himself among the thieves, that he caused a certain number of his co-prisoners to die of hunger, that he contributed to the horror of the camp and therefore his place was in the dock with the accused, not with the prosecutors.

If one looks at the descriptive list of the 250 witnesses for the prosecution who filed through the court day after day, it is seen that they are all like Mr. Hermann Langbein, and that in that camp where one could not survive more than four months without "stealing" from the rations of one's co-prisoners, they all survived from two to four -years...

To give some idea of the significance of this thievery we must look at the testimony of Dr. Hans Winch, S.S. doctor of Auschwitz. He came after Langbein to affirm that 25% of the camp prisoners (the cadres, he said explicitly) were sufficiently nourished, and that 75% never had enough to eat, so little in fact that at the end of four months they were dying of hunger. And Dr. Hans Winch gave figures: in order to live normally at Auschwitz a prisoner needed, he said, 5,000 calories. So, if 25% got these 5,000 calories for themselves (and they were able to since they administered the camp and distributed the food), that is, three rations apiece, or just about, then the other 75% got about a third of an 1,800 calorie ration, or about 600 calories. The mass of prisoners were in reality condemned to death by the 'self-government.' I am very much afraid that here lie the real figures of the famous 'gas chambers'!

Two of the accused out of 23 partially confessed to what they were accused of, and I must admit that this is remarkable. In 1946, at Nuremberg, they would all have admitted everything. This is proof that we are no longer in 1946... So we must have a look at what these two admitted. It is clear about the first -- the accused Hans Stark, today professor of agronomy -- who had been assigned to a firing squad to take care of persons condemned to death in the regular courts of the Third Reich. No need to come back to that.

As for the second, non-commissioned officer Klaehr, he admitted that he had killed 200 to 300 Jewish prisoners with injections of phenol. I advise the reader to read carefully a remarkable book by Maurice Garçon La vie exécrable de Guillemette Babin. In the Middle Ages, accused of sorcery, she admitted having met every night at midnight, in orgiastic witches' revels, incubuses and succubuses, on the promise that if she confessed she would not be burned as a sorcerer. Klaehr was accused of having killed these 200 to 300 Jews by injection into the heart on Christmas Eve of 1942. He denied having done it that night. During the trial two things came out: on Christmas Eve 1942 he was not even at Auschwitz; on the other hand, for one [166] man to inject 200 to 300 people in one evening was a little too much. Ask the first medical student you come across. So he admitted having reached this figure in two months, at the rate of ten or fifteen at a time. This is much more plausible. But is it any nearer the truth? That is another question.

What is curious is that during two months of hearings, the problem of gas chambers per se has not been brought up. Every time the occasion arises, President Hoffmaier (former S.S. Nazi in Italy) limits the answers of the accused to the problem of 'selections' within the camp or on the arrival platform.

Each time the scenario is the same; I never knew there were gas chambers at Auschwitz, says the accused. And the President says, all the same, men were selected out, therefore... The accused remains silent, since it is true that selections were made and he can only assent.

It seems that these operations should be explained. The purpose we know; to separate out the sick, unable to work, from the capable. What happened to the former? The witnesses for the prosecution we have been hearing since February 27th invariably answer that they were sent to the gas chambers. What is curious is that they have all seen them, loaded into trucks or railcars, leave the camp, but no one has seen them arrive at the gas chamber in question, nor has anyone been present at an extermination.

On the other hand, it suffices to read The Tragedy of the Deportation (La Tragédie de la déportation) (published under the direction of Olga Wormser and Henri Michel, Hachette, 1962) to see that a great number of the authors of concentration camp literature have seen convoys of the sick coming from Auschwitz and arriving at Bergen-Belsen, Neuengamme, Buchenwald, Dora, Ravensbrück, Flossenburg, etc. during the year 1943, and especially after May 1944. From Auschwitz but not only from Auschwitz: from all the concentration camps which were, in the view of the Third Reich, work camps and not extermination camps.

Explanation: a work camp, or concentration camp, which let out deportees to industrial works in the region where they were, was to be profitable. And the S.S. guard at the entrance looked to it to see that in each of them, the number of the sick who were incapable of working (the 'useless mouths' as Mme. de Beauvoir said) should not threaten this return. Every time they thought this number excessive, they had the 'self-government' of the camp, within the camp (Kapo, Vorarbeiter, bludgeon in hand) carry out regular raids, which were regular man hunts -- every sick man tried to escape this because he was certain that he was going to be sent to the gas chambers.

Those who were 'selected' were sent to one or another of the above-cited camps, most often to Bergen-Belsen and Neuengamme, specially set up for the sick from all the camps. Since their companions in misfortune did not see them again they came to the conclusion that they had been sent to the gas chambers. In [167] the camp lingo the whole operation was delineated in the expression Himmelsfahrtkommando, kommando for departure to Heaven.

In reality not a single new item has appeared since 20th of February when the last testimony was given. Things are just as they were. We have heard witnesses caught in flagrant lies, others who have retracted what they have said, others who have told as something "seen" only what they have simply read. There was even a trip to Auschwitz -- nothing came from that.

From the point of view of history this trial is bound to be a total failure and one little thing will prove it. In 1945, writing his SS-Staat, Eugen Kogon had found only one witness to attest to the extermination of the Jews by gas. This was a certain Janda Weiss, who lived at Brno (on the other side of the Iron Curtain) whom nobody could cross-question. Today, Prosecutor Fritz Bauer has succeeded in producing 250 before the Frankfurt Tribunal! As time goes on and as long as trials of this type are held, the number of witnesses of this kind will only grow and grow, and more and more will come from behind the Iron Curtain. Already, the majority of those at Frankfurt have come from there; they are all either communists, Jews or both.

For the next five years 500 trials are expected or are in preparation. About 15,000 persons are under lock and key and they may well be joined by many others. That is to say, they haven't finished showing us again and again that Germany is a country of barbarians, unworthy of being integrated into the community of the European people, to the great pleasure of the masters of the Kremlin and the international Zionist movement, associated in this joint enterprise for the destruction of Europe - and that is the whole problem.

Because, and I repeat, either a Europe will be created in which Germany will have her place with equal rights with the other European peoples, in which case Bolshevism will begin to recede, or Germany will be refused integration into the community of European peoples and there will never be a Europe.

To this political argument an economic one can be added: Germany, declared to be solely responsible for the Second World War, must alone pay reparations and, first of all, the wrongs the State of Israel claims to have suffered. But at 5,000 DM per victim, six million victims makes quite a stir, just for physical damages alone. And that is quite apart from what the Claims Conference which met at Brussels, 9th to 13th March 1964, decided was due to be paid to the surviving Jews as an indemnity for "material goods stolen by the Germans." And these, according to La Terre Retrouvée of April 14th, 1964, come to:


Germany 2 billion dollars
Poland 3 billion dollars
Rumania 1 billion dollars
Hungary 570 million dollars
France 950 million dollars
Czechoslovakia 650 million dollars
Belgium 618 million dollars
Holland 450 million dollars
Slovakia 140 million dollars
Greece 120 million dollars
9,490 million dollars

And, in addition, the war debts which will be claimed from Germany by the Allies who conquered her, the sum of which will be fixed, according to resolutions taken at London on February 27th, 1953, on the signing of the Peace Treaty with 're-united Germany.' Yugoslavia has already stated a claim for 70 billion dollars, Greece for 20 billion... The others have said nothing specific yet, but nothing is lost in the waiting.

To exact from Germany such fantastic sums, which in all exceed by far the total of what was exacted at Versailles in 1919, is as much as to say that she shall revert to another Weimar Republic -- or something still worse! It is another way of destroying Europe, or -- to deliver her to Bolshevism.

It is, of course, not easy to get anyone to admit that such a plan exists, neither the Germans nor any other peoples. Hence these trials which are but the spring-board for that propaganda.

The vexing thing about these trials is that they are going around in circles - the more witnesses are found, the less reliable they are. So they are constantly referring back to the first testimony concerning Auschwitz, that of Rudolf Hoess. Every time the defence puts a witness on the spot, President Hoffmaier throws in his face The Commandant of Auschwitz Speaks.

After that everything goes on as if the defence were ignorant of the fact that Rudolf Hoess had also testified at Nuremberg on April 26th, 1946, and that after having claimed at Nuremberg (Report of the Trial, Volume XI, pp. 410 ff.) that about three million Jews had been exterminated (2,500,000 of them by gas), he wrote in the book in question (p. 239) that, at the very most, 1,130,000 persons had been interned in that camp. Or as if the defence were also ignorant of the fact that that is not the only contradiction which a comparison of the two successive testimonies by the same man reveals: like convoys of Jews 'never made up of. more than 1,000 persons' (p. 229), but which, at the rate of 'five convoys a day' (p. 236) 'brought 15,000 persons to the camp every day'(p. 239); the gas chambers which Himmler gave him the order to physically exterminate the Jews (p. 227), but on which subject 'we were never able to get a clear and precise decision from Himmler' (p. 233); Zyklon B, which is sometimes a liquid, sometimes tablets releasing gas on contact with air; the operation of extermination itself, which 'lasts on an average of [169] half an hour' (p. 174) after which the doors are opened and 'the sonderkommando begins at once its work of clearing away the bodies' (p. 230) but the handling of Zyklon B is so dangerous that the gas chamber 'has to be aired for two days before one can go in' (p. 229). etc.

In a word, an apocryphal document: Hoess was hanged at Auschwitz on the 4th of April 1947 and he certainly will not return to protest against what he is being made to say today. Moreover, Dr. Broszat, director of the Institute of Contemporary History at Munich, stated to the court at Frankfurt last February 26th (1964), that "one could not rely on the statements of Rudolf Hoess." (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, February 27th, 1964).


So, the accused at the Frankfurt Trial will be condemned as well as those at the 500 other trials; there will have been no proof, but...

But Germany will pay and that is what is essential.

What matter the means? And what matter Europe!

Israel first, and even at the price of the dissolution of Europe - or of its bolshevisation (read: slavisation), since bolshevism is only the modern form of pan-slavism, which amounts to the same thing.

1./ Editor's Note: Unfortunately Rassinier is wrong here. The American Council for Judaism is anti-Zionist but does not represent the majority of American Jews. He confuses A.C.J. with the more Establishment A.J.C. - American Jewish Committee.

2./ Fumigation Chambers.

3./ In his memoirs, Le Chef du contre-espionage nazi parle (The head of Nazi counterespionage speaks), Paris, March 1957, Walter Schellenberg, who drafted the agreement between the O.K.W and the S.D. on the subject of the creation of Einsatzgruppen, described in detail the. scene when it was signed by Heydrich, head of the S.D., and the administrating officer Wagner, who had been designated by the O.K.W. for this formality,with the date "end of April 1941," (pp. 229-230). But exhibit No. 69 of the Jerusalem trial makes mention of misdeeds of the Einsatzgruppen in Poland in 1939, supported by the report of a "conference of heads of bureaux and Einsatzgruppen" presided over by Heydrich on September 27th, 1939 (attached Document T. 164). It is true that argument No. 120 speaks of "massacres by Einsatzgruppen, created, it is said, on the eve of Hitler's offensive against Russia." And if I should ask who the rascal is that manufactured the false document, or the idiot who edited the sentence., what will be the answer?)

4./ Actually, there was an interval from December 1st, 1943 until May 1st, 1944, when Hoess' adjutant Liebehaenschel was in command. The latter was hanged at Auschwitz at the same time as Hoess. (Rudolf Hoess is not to be confused with Rudolf Hess, still in Spandau prison.)

5 / [Note de l'AAARGH: Rassinier commet ici une erreur de personne: la déposition en question a été faite par Krausnick et non par Broszat.]

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