The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
December 17, 1945 to January 4, 1946

Twenty-Fifth Day: Wednesday, 2nd January, 1946
(Part 3 of 9)

[COLONEL STOREY continues]

[Page 207]

I now pass to another subject, namely "The Gestapo was responsible for establishing and classifying concentration camps and for committing racial and political undesirables to concentration and annihilation camps for slave labour and mass murder."

The Tribunal has already received evidence concerning the responsibility of the Gestapo for the administration of concentration camps, and the authority of the Gestapo for taking persons into protective custody to be carried out in the state concentration camps. The Gestapo also issued orders establishing concentration camps, transforming prisoner of war camps into concentration camps as internment camps, changing labour camps into concentration camps, setting up special sections for female prisoners, and so forth.

The Chief of the Security Police and S.S. ordered the classification of concentration camps according to the seriousness of the accusation and the chances for reforming the prisoners, from the Nazi viewpoint. I now refer

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to Documents 1063A and 1063B in the second volume, Exhibit USA 492. The concentration camps were classified as Class I, II or III. Class I was for the least serious prisoners, and Class III was for the most serious. Now Document 1063A is signed by Heydrich and it is dated 2nd January, 1941. I quote from the beginning:
Subject : Classification of the Concentration Camps.

The Reichsfuehrer S.S. and Chief of the German Police has given his approval to classify the concentration camps into various categories, which take into account the personality of the prisoner as well as the degree of his danger to the State. Accordingly, the concentration camps will be classified into the following categories :

Category I -- for all prisoners charged with minor offences only and definitely qualified for correction ; also for special cases and solitary confinement -- Camps Dachau, Sachsenhausen and Auschwitz 1. The latter also applies in part to Category II.

Category la -- for all old prisoners unconditionally qualified for work, who could still be used in the medicinal herb gardens - - the Camp Dachau.

Category II -- for prisoners charged with major offences but still qualified for re-education and correction -- the Camps Buchenwald, Flossenburg, Auschwitz II.

Category III -- for prisoners under most serious charges, also for those who have been previously convicted for criminal offences ; at the same time for asocial prisoners, that is to say, those who can hardly be corrected -- the Camp Mauthausen."

I call your Honour's attention to the fact that we have been talking about Mauthausen, where the "K" action took place.

The Chief of the Security Police and S.D. had authority to fix the length of the period of custody. During the war it was the policy not to permit the prisoners to know the period of custody and merely to announce the term as " Until further notice." That was established by Document 1531-PS, which has previously been introduced as Exhibit USA 248, and the only reason for referring to it is to show that they had the right to fix the period of custody.

The local Gestapo offices, which made the arrests, maintained a register called the "Haftbuch," and, as I understand, "Haftbuch" simply means a block or police register. In this register the names of all persons arrested were listed, together with personal data, grounds of arrest and disposition. When orders were received from the Gestapo Headquarters in Berlin to commit persons who had been arrested to concentration camps, an entry was made in the "Haftbuch" to that effect.

I now offer in evidence the original of one of these books, and it is Document L-358, Exhibit USA 495. This book was collected by the 3rd Army when it overran an area, and it was captured by the T Force on 22nd April, 1945, near Bad Sulze, Germany. This book is the original register used by the Gestapo at Tomassow, Poland, to record the names of the persons arrested, the grounds for arrest and the disposition made, of cases during the period from 1st June, 1943, to 20th December, 1944.

In the register are approximatelv 3,500 names of persons. Approximately 2,200 were arrested for membership in the resistance movements and partisan unit. This is a very large book, and I am going to ask the clerk to pass

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it to your Honours so that you might get a look at it. It is too big to photograph. And if your Honours will just turn to one of the pages, I will read what the different columns provide - just any one of the pages. There is a double column. It starts on the left and goes over to the other side. In the first column that heading is simply a number of the man when he comes in. The next column is his name. The third column is the family - a brief family history and his religion. The fourth is the domicile. The next shows the date he was arrested and by whom - that is the fifth column. The next column, the place of arrest. And then the next column, the reason for arrest. And then the next is another number which is apparently a serial number for delivery. And next to the last column is the disposition. And the final column, remarks.

Now, out of the 3,500 names that are shown in that book, your Honours will notice a number of red marks. Those apparently meant the ones that were shot. of those, 325 were shot. Only 35 of that 325 had first been tried. 950 out of this list were sent to concentration camps and 155 sent to the Reich for forced labour. According to this register, similar treatment was accorded persons who were arrested on other grounds, for instance, Communists, Jews, hostages, and persons taken in reprisal. A large number are shown to have been arrested during raids, no further grounds being stated.

I particularly refer your Honours to entries 286, 287 and 288, that is, the numbers in the first column of the register, where the crime charged to the person arrested was "als Juden" ; in other words, he was a Jew. And by that you will find a red cross mark, and the punishment given was death.

I now pass from this document and merely call attention to Document L- 215, which was heretofore introduced as Exhibit USA 243. I do not intend to read from it unless your Honours want to turn to L-215. This is a file of original dossiers on 25 Luxembourgers taken into protective custody for commitment to concentration camps. I will just refer to a sentence of the language in the document. Quoting :

"According to the finding of the State Police he endangers by his attitude the existence and security of the People and the State."
And in each case, with reference to those dossiers, that appears as the reason for the execution of these 25 Luxembourgers. And in connection -

THE PRESIDENT : Colonel Storey, you said execution, did you not ?

COLONEL STOREY : I beg your pardon - sending to concentration camps.

THE PRESIDENT : Yes. There is no evidence they were executed.

COLONEL STOREY : No, sir ; they were committed to concenttation camps. And also in connection with that same document there is a form provided by which the Gestapo Fleadquarters in Berlin were notified when the persons were received by the concentration camps.

Another document - which has heretofore been received as Exhibit USA 279, Document 1472-PS, in the second volume - I am simply going to refer to it as a predicate for another. That was a telegram of 16th December, 1942, in which Mueller reported that the Gestapo could round up some 45,000 Jews in connection with the programme of obtaining additional labour in concentration camps. And with reference to the same subject there is Document 1063-D-PS, which has heretofore been offered as Exhibit USA 219, Mueller sent a directive to the commanders and inspectors

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of the Security Police and S.D. and to the directors of the Gestapo regional offices, in which he stated that Himmler had ordered on 14th December, ordered on 14th December, 1942, that at least 35,000 persons, who were fit for work, had to be put into concentration camps not later than the end of January.

Now, in that same connection I offer Document L-41, volume 1, as Exhibit USA 496. This document contains a further directive from Mueller dated 23rd March, 1943, and supplements the directive of 17th December, 1942, to which I referred, and in this he states that the measures are to be carried out until 30th April, 1943. And I would like to quote from the second paragraph on page 3 of the exhibit.

"Care must, however, be taken that only prisoners who are fit for work are transferred to concentration camps, and adolescents only in accordance with the given directives ; otherwise, the concentration camps would become overcrowded, and this would defeat the intended object."
In that same connection I offer Document 701-PS, Exhibit USA 497. This is a letter dated 1st April, 1943, from the Minister of Justice to the Public Prosecutors and also addressed to the Commissioner of the Reich Minister of Justice for the penal camps in Emsland. Quoting :
"Regarding Poles and Jews who are released from the penal institutions of the Department of Justice. Instructions for the independent penal institutions.

1. With reference to the new guiding principles for the application of Article 1, Section 2, of the decree of 11th June, 1940, Reich Legal Gazette I S. 887 - Attachment I of decree (RV) of 27th January, 1943 - 913-2 enclosure I-IIIa 2-2629 - the Reich Chief Security Office has directed by the decree of 11th March, 1943 - 11 A 2 number 100-43-176:

(a) Jews, who in accordance with number VI of the guiding principles are released from a penal institution, are to be taken by the State Police (Chief) Office competent for the district in which the penal institution is located, to be detained for the rest of their lives in the concentration camps Auschwitz or Lublin in accordance with the regulations for protective custody that have been issued.

The same applies to Jews who in future are released from a penal institution after serving sentence of confinement.

(b) Poles, who in accordance with Number VI of the guiding principles are released from a penal institution, are to be taken by the State Police (Chief) Office competent for the district in which the penal institution is located, to be placed for the duration of the war in a concentration camp in accordance with the regulations on protective custody that have been issued.

The same applies in the future to Poles, who after serving a term of imprisonment of more than six months, are to be discharged by a penal institution.

Conforming to the request of the Chief Office for Reich Security, I ask that in the future :

(a) All Jews to be discharged;

(b) All Poles to be discharged;

who have served a sentence of more than six months, be transferred for further confinement to the State Police (Chief) Office competent for the

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district, and are to be placed promptly at its disposal before the end of sentence, for collection."
And the last paragraph states that this ruling replaces the hitherto ordered return of all Polish prisoners undergoing imprisonment in the Old Reich condemned in the annexed Eastern territory.

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