Institute for Historical Review
- Mark Weber was the eighth witness called by the defence. He testified from Tuesday, March 22 to Monday, March 28, 1988.
Weber was born on October 9, 1951 in Portland, Oregon. He graduated in 1976 with a high honours B.A. from Portland State University and in 1977 was awarded an M.A. in Modern European History from Indiana State University. He attended two semesters at the University of Munich and was fluent in the German language. (23 5649, 5749)
From 1978 to 1980, Weber worked as Records Counsel for the Elderly and from 1981 to 1982 worked as a writer for Middle East Perspective, a publication edited and published by Dr. Alfred Lilienthal. From 1983 onward Weber had worked in historical research and translation. (23-5649)
Beginning in 1979, Weber began extensive research into the Holocaust, in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., the Library of Congress, The Institute for Contemporary History in Munich and the Leo Baeck Institute in New York City. Included in his studies were the aerial photographs of Auschwitz taken by the Allies in 1944, the original records of the German Einsatzgruppen, the German Foreign Office files on the so-called “final solution” of the Jewish question in Europe, the records of SS concentration camp administration, the Wannsee Conference protocol and memoranda of the conference, U.S. Army records of Allied atrocities committed against Germans, and all documents and testimony in the 42 volumes of the Nuremberg Tribunal relating to the Jewish question, as well as all volumes of the other official Allied records of the Nuremberg trials relating to wartime policy regarding the Jews. In addition, Weber had carefully studied the works of such writers as Raul Hilberg, Gerald Reitlinger, Leon Poliakov and Lucy Dawidowicz. (23-5650 to 5654, 5660)
Weber was the first person to publish a secret U.S. Army report on conditions in Buchenwald concentration camp written immediately after the capture of the camp by the Americans. This report differed in very, very many substantial ways from the official story about Buchenwald that was being put out by the American government at the time. (23-5654)
Weber was a member of the Editorial Advisory Committee of the Institute for Historical Review, and had published numerous articles, including “Buchenwald: Legend and Reality,” “Joseph Sobran and Historical Revisionism,” “Rauschning’s Phony ‘Conversations with Hitler’,” “Stalin Prepared for Summer 1941 Attack,” “Churchill Wanted To ‘Drench’ Germany with Poison Gas,” “National Holocaust Museum to Cost $100 Million,” “Lessons of the Mengele Affair,” Roosevelt’s ‘Secret Map’ Speech,” “Albert Speer and the ‘Holocaust’,” “President Roosevelt’s Campaign to Incite War in Europe: The Secret Polish Documents” and “The Civil War Concentration Camps.” He was currently working on a major study of the Holocaust controversy provisionally entitled The Final Solution: Legend and Reality. (23-5655 to 5658)
Weber’s writing was revisionist, in that he generally took issue with the usually accepted story of the extermination of the European Jews. He was among perhaps a dozen writers who took the same position. Weber was familiar with most of their writings. Weber had also met the author of Did Six Million Really Die?, Richard Verrall, in England and discussed the booklet with him. (56-5659, 5661)
On cross-examination by Crown Attorney Pearson on his qualifications as an expert, Weber testified that he first met Ernst Zündel two-and-a-half weeks before, although they had corresponded and been in contact by telephone for some years. (23-5662, 5663)
Weber testified that during his undergraduate studies he had done no research into the Holocaust: “I didn’t have any particular interest in it because I accepted it as completely accurate and true.” (23-5665)
Weber had published no books; the approximately eighteen articles listed on his curriculum vitae had all been published in the Journal of Historical Review; however, he had published other articles on history in other publications. (23-5665 to 5668)
Weber had been a member of the Editorial Advisory Committee of the Journal of Historical Review since 1984. There were sixteen other members of the Board; of these, James J. Martin was a retired Professor of History who had a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and had contributed to recent editions of the Encyclopedia Britannica. Dr. Martin, said Weber, was a revisionist and did not accept the generally accepted view of the Holocaust. He believed that there was no German programme to exterminate the Jews in Europe during the war. Weber knew from personal conversations with him that Martin believed that hundreds of thousands of Jews, perhaps millions, had died during the war. (23-5671, 5672)
Other members of the Editorial Committee were Dr. Walter Beveraggi-Allende, a professor of economics in Buenos Aires, who had a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University; Dr. Arthur R. Butz, an Associate Professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Northwestern University; Dr. Robert Faurisson, a Professor of Modern French literature at the University of Lyon in France; Dr. Martin A. Larson who had a Ph.D. in history; Dr. Revilo P. Oliver, a retired professor of classics at the University of Illinois, Dr. Charles E. Weber, who had a Ph.D. in German and taught German for many years at the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma; Dr. Andreas R. Wesserle, who had a Ph.D. in history and taught at Marquette University in Wisconsin; Dr. Wilhelm Stäglich who had a doctorate in law and was a retired judge, and Ditlieb Felderer. (23-5672, 5673)
The founder of the Institute for Historical Review was Willis A. Carto, who was also the founder of Liberty Lobby. (23-5673, 5674)
Weber was generally not paid for his articles; he supported himself through grants of money from the Historical Review Committee, whose officers were Mr. Fritz Berg, Dr. William B. Lindsey and Mr. William Curry. Weber also did freelance writing and research for others. These were people who believed strongly, as Weber did, that the truth about the Holocaust was generally suppressed and was not given a fair hearing. It was not possible, said Weber, to get these writings published in many other journals and the Historical Review Committee was trying to encourage those who did research and writing in this subject. (23-5679 to 5681)
Weber was qualified to give opinion evidence on the question of the Holocaust and the alleged extermination policy of the German government. (23-5684)
Weber testified that he had studied the Einsatzgruppen reports carefully after reading Raul Hilberg’s standard work, The Destruction of the European Jews, and realized the importance which Hilberg ascribed to these reports. Weber quickly found that Hilberg, like most of the Holocaust historians, had extracted from these reports very selectively those portions which they could use to substantiate their theses. (23-5685) In Weber’s opinion, the Einsatzgruppen reports, viewed as a whole and taken into context, did not substantiate the extermination story. There were several reasons for this: firstly, the reports showed that there was no German policy to exterminate the Jews of Russia as Jews. While the reports showed large numbers of Jews were shot by German security forces, the reports also made it clear that these shootings were carried out for specific security reasons or in reprisals or for other specific reasons, not simply because these people were Jews. Secondly, the reports themselves grossly exaggerated, sometimes by as much as ten times, the number of Jews allegedly killed. These exaggerations, said Weber, were akin to the gross exaggerations during the Vietnam War by the U.S. government of the daily body count of Vietcong dead. Said Weber, “During the Vietnam War, there was repeatedly on television, night after night, wildly exaggerated stories or figures of Vietcong that were dead.” (23-5686)
One of the most important witnesses regarding the Einsatzgruppen was a man named Otto Ohlendorf, the commander of Einsatzgruppe D which had operated in southern Russia. Ohlendorf testified for the prosecution at the Nuremberg trial that his unit was responsible for the killing of 90,000 Jews in southern Russia during the year that he was the commander. These figures essentially matched the figures given in the reports of the Einsatzgruppen. Ohlendorf, said Weber, tried very hard to co-operate with the Allies in the hope of trying to save his own skin. To his surprise, however, the Allies put him on trial for his activities in the Einsatzgruppen after he testified for them. During his own trial, Ohlendorf changed his testimony and stated that the figures of Jews killed were greatly exaggerated and that there was no policy to exterminate the Jews simply because they were Jews. He was executed by the Allies. (23-5687 to 5689) The contradictions between Ohlendorf’s two testimonies was not widely known. Usually, only the initial Ohlendorf testimony and the figures given therein were quoted. (23-5688)
Weber had examined the latest work of Raul Hilberg, whom Weber described as the most prominent defender of the Holocaust extermination story. Hilberg himself was becoming revisionist, said Weber. In the first edition of his book, The Destruction of the European Jews, Hilberg wrote that there were two orders given by Hitler to exterminate the Jews, the first in the summer of 1941 to exterminate the Russian Jews and, a short time later, another order to exterminate all the Jews of Europe. In the 1985 second edition of the book, however, Hilberg completely rewrote this passage and eliminated any discussion whatsoever of any orders by Hitler. In a public statement made in New York a few years before, Hilberg took the position that there probably never was an order by Hitler to exterminate the Jews but that some kind of extermination programme happened spontaneously. This was a good example of the kind of changes that occurred to the Holocaust story which the public in general was not informed of. (23-5689, 5690)
Another example of the way in which the Holocaust story had changed was the soap story. During the Second World War, Rabbi Stephen Wise, the President of the World Jewish Congress, stated repeatedly that the Germans were manufacturing soap bars from the corpses of Jews. This story was used at Nuremberg and continued to be repeated in the popular press, including a booklet published and distributed by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith as late as 1987. Yet, pointed out Weber, no reputable historian now accepted the story. Raul Hilberg and other serious historians had abandoned it. (23-5690, 5691)
With respect to the Einsatzgruppen, Weber had studied the work of Reginald Paget, a member of the British House of Commons and a historian. He was the person who investigated the Einsatzgruppen reports in the context of a trial of a German general. Paget found that the Einsatzgruppen figures were enormously exaggerated. Specifically, he investigated the claim that 10,000 Jews were shot at Simferopol in the Crimea in November 1941. He found that instead of 10,000 Jews, probably about 300 persons were shot, most of whom were not Jews. In that particular case, the Einsatzgruppen report figures were exaggerated from 300 persons to 10,000 persons. Paget subsequently concluded that the Einsatzgruppen reports were exaggerated on an order of about ten to one. (23-5691)
Weber agreed that in his book concerning the trial, Paget expressed opinions supporting the 6 million. There were a number of individuals, said Weber, who investigated various aspects of the Holocaust story and concluded that certain parts were not accurate; yet these same individuals would still accept that the overall story was true. (23-5692)
At Nuremberg and in the post-war trials, said Weber, the common defence strategy was to argue that the defendant was not involved in the extermination, not to argue that the extermination itself did not happen. This was done to avoid the almost impossible task of calling into question the entire extermination story which had been held to be true with an almost religious fervour in the United States and western Europe since the end of the war. (23-3693)
Every single defendant at Nuremberg denied there was any programme to exterminate the Jews. Generally, the defendants, the most important of whom was Hermann Göring, were astounded by the kind of testimony and evidence that was presented by men like Otto Ohlendorf. They didn’t know about any extermination programme themselves and some of them said, ‘Well, perhaps there was one but I don’t know about it’. (23-5694)
Hans Frank (the Governor General of German-occupied Poland) strenuously denied that he knew about any extermination programme against the Jews. Weber pointed out that during his testimony, when confronted with the evidence of Ohlendorf and Höss, Frank said that ‘a thousand years will pass and Germany’s guilt will never pass away’. This quote was repeated endlessly in Holocaust literature, said Weber. But what was forgotten was that at the end of the trial, Frank specifically repudiated this statement because he believed the treatment of the German nation by the Allies after the end of the war offset or was comparable to the treatment that the Germans gave the Jews during the war. (23-5695)
Weber repeated that the Einsatzgruppen reports did not evidence any plan to exterminate the Jews. The Jews were shot for security reasons, as alleged spies, and for reprisals. If a German soldier was shot by a sniper or killed in a village somewhere, the normal policy of the German forces was to shoot hostages or shoot people in the village as a reprisal. This was a very grim policy but a policy which had been carried out by almost all governments faced with any kind of guerrilla or partisan warfare. The United States carried out such a policy in Vietnam and the French in Algeria. (23-5696)
What was important with regard to understanding the German policy in Russia, said Weber, was the whole context of the war at the time and the problems the Germans were facing. When Germany attacked Russia in June of 1941, the Soviet government immediately called upon all citizens of the Soviet Union to carry out a partisan war against the Germans. Jews were especially hostile to the Germans and were involved in partisan warfare more than others. Germany was faced with an enemy that did not operate by the normal rules of warfare. Always in history, said Weber, guerrilla warfare (which was terrorism), was always met by counter- terrorism. An example of that today was the policy of the Israeli government towards the Palestine Liberation Organization. The PLO termed their activities a guerrilla war of freedom; the Israeli government called it terrorism.1 (23-5696)
Weber testified that the Wannsee Conference protocol was the record of a very important meeting held on January 20, 1942 in Berlin. This document was referred to in virtually every important work on the Holocaust. The single surviving copy was not an original but one of sixteen copies originally made. It was not signed or dated. Weber believed it was probably an unauthorized protocol but he could not be absolutely sure. The author of the document was allegedly Adolf Eichmann. Weber accepted the protocol’s authenticity but the important revisionist writer, Dr. Wilhelm Stäglich, had called its authenticity into question for the reasons that the document had no date, no signature, no letterhead. There was no record of any other copies existing. (23-5706 to 5708)
The Wannsee Conference protocol itself did not indicate a plan for the extermination of the Jews. Exterminationist historians Martin Broszat and Hans Mommsen now believed that the protocol did not constitute such an order or plan. In Weber’s opinion, the protocol was evidence that there was no extermination policy. From a reading of the document in context with other German documents from the time, it was clear that the German policy during the war was to deport the Jews to the east, to the occupied Soviet territories, with the intention of deporting them to some place outside of Europe after the war. (23-5708 to 5711)
Reinhard Heydrich, the chairman of the Wannsee Conference and a man who had a major role in Germany’s wartime Jewish policy, gave a speech in Prague to high level German officials in which he said that the Jews of Europe would be put in camps in the occupied Soviet territories and then, after the war, would be taken out of Europe altogether. The private conversations of Hitler himself (recorded in Table Talk) to a circle of close associates in 1942 also showed this to be the German policy. Hitler said that he was absolutely determined to deport the Jews out of Europe to Madagascar or to some other Jewish national state after the war. (23-5711, 5712)
Another important document in this regard was the Luther Memorandum of August 21, 1942. The author, Martin Luther, was the head of Inland II (the domestic office of the German Foreign Office) and had a major role in co-ordinating the deportation of Jews from various countries in Europe. The Foreign Office was involved in the deportations because it had to have permission from foreign governments with which Germany was allied during the war to deport Jews from those countries to the east. So Luther was very much in a position to know what was going on. The memorandum laid out what Germany’s wartime policy towards the Jews was, namely, that they were to be deported to the east and kept there until the end of the war when the Jews would be taken out of Europe altogether. This policy was cited in the memorandum and authorized by Hitler himself. (23-5713 to 5717)
Weber pointed out that exterminationist historians, when faced with documents such as this, tried to interpret the document to suit their preconceived notions. Usually the exterminationists, such as Hilberg and Dawidowicz, would allege that when the Germans talked about their policy towards the Jews, they used code words or euphemisms. The idea that the highest officials of the German government would be using code words with each other about a policy they were all aware of and that was supposed to be secret anyway was hard to believe, said Weber. He believed that interpretation was not accurate. Weber pointed out that the post- war testimony of those who were present at the Wannsee Conference was fairly unanimous in saying that the conference was not one held for an extermination programme. (23-5714 to 5718)
Another interesting piece of evidence was that of Heydrich’s wife. She was shocked when her husband told her in 1942 that the Germans were going to send all the Jews to Russia. She felt it was a very cruel and harsh thing to do. Heydrich tried to reassure her that the Jews were not going to be killed and that the conditions were not as harsh as many people had been led to believe. He also stated that it was necessary that Europe rid itself of the Jews and that there would be a new beginning for them after the war. The Wannsee Conference protocol used the words bei Freilassung which meant that “upon their release” or “upon their liberation” there would be a new beginning for the Jews. (23-5718)
The German government hoped, after it won the war, to hold a pan-European conference involving even neutral countries like Switzerland, Ireland, Portugal and Spain, for an overall European policy so the Jews could not simply move into another country in Europe after being removed from others. Hitler was adamant on this point. (23-5719, 5720)
Weber first became interested in the Holocaust issue when the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) made public in 1979 the wartime aerial reconnaissance photographs of Auschwitz taken in 1944 and 1945. These photographs were unknown to the public up to that time. The purpose of the overflights was not to record what was going on in Auschwitz I or Birkenau, but what was going on at Monowitz (sometimes called Auschwitz III) which was a major industrial centre the Germans had built up for manufacturing artificial gasoline. (23-5720, 5724)
It surprised Weber that the photographs showed no evidence of an extermination in the very camp which today was considered the most important German extermination centre. Nor were the photographs consistent with the extermination story of Auschwitz as it had been presented for years by the Holocaust historians. For example, it was claimed that the Auschwitz crematories in 1944 were belching smoke constantly as masses of gassed Jews were cremated and that huge piles of corpses were being burned in open funeral pyres. However, there was no indication of this in any of the aerial photographs even though the photographs were taken at random, as far as the Germans were concerned, during precisely the period when it was alleged that the greatest extermination took place at Auschwitz. At Nuremberg, it was claimed that 4 million people were killed at the camp. While the photographs alone did not prove the revisionist viewpoint, they were inconsistent with the Holocaust story. Weber was astounded when Elie Wiesel and others nevertheless seized upon these aerial photographs to claim that the United States government knew that Jews were being exterminated at Auschwitz during the war and complacently refused to do anything about it. Elie Wiesel’s words were that the United States shared a historical guilt for allowing the Jews to be exterminated. Weber asked the Director of the Modern Military Branch of the National Archives about this point and he told Weber emphatically that he also disagreed with this interpretation and felt that the photographs were being blatantly misrepresented. (23-5720 to 5724)
Weber met Richard Verrall, the author of Did Six Million Really Die?, in 1977 in England and talked with him about his writing of the booklet. Weber learned that Verrall graduated with high honours from the University of London. (23-5725)
Weber had read Did Six Million Really Die? several times. He believed that the thesis of the book, that there was no German policy or programme to exterminate the Jews of Europe during the Second World War, was accurate notwithstanding that the booklet contained statements that were not completely accurate. Harwood had relied heavily in the booklet on the writings of Paul Rassinier, a French historian who was the pioneer of Holocaust revisionism. Rassinier was a French socialist who had been arrested by the Germans and sent to Dora and Buchenwald concentration camps during the war because he helped Jews in France to escape to Switzerland. He did not have a very pleasant time in the camps, said Weber. When he returned to France at the end of the war, he was given medals by the French government and became a member of the French National Assembly. He was very shocked and distressed, however, about many of the wild and exaggerated stories that were being told in France right after the war about things he had personal knowledge of at Buchenwald and Dora. He later wrote a series of books about his experiences and the entire question of the Jews during the Second World War, including a book on the Adolf Eichmann trial. (23-5727 to 5730) Weber believed that Rassinier’s work overall was credible and was especially valuable and reliable when he was talking about his own personal experiences at Buchenwald and Dora. He did not, however, have as much access to information as historians did today. As more and more information became accessible, historians were able to write about the subject with greater and greater accuracy. (23-5731)
Did Six Million Really Die? was published first in England in 1976 to the best of Weber’s knowledge. Since the booklet was published, much more information had come to light about the subject that made the case for revisionism much stronger. (23-5732)
Harwood also relied heavily on the booklet The Myth of the Six Million which was published anonymously but was written by an American historian named David Hoggan. Other sources included newspaper articles and secondary sources such as Gerald Reitlinger’s The Final Solution. Weber pointed out that historians very often quoted from works of others with whom they might disagree very strongly. Raul Hilberg quoted from Mein Kampf but that didn’t mean Hilberg agreed with it. He would quote it to support a submission he wished to make. Often historians took material which was relevant to their particular topic from any number of sources, even those that were hostile to the general thesis of the historical work. (23-5731 to 5733)
Weber returned to the subject of the Einsatzgruppen. There were four Einsatzgruppen altogether with a total number of personnel of about 3,000. The Einsatzgruppen varied in size from about 990 in the largest to 500 in the smallest. Their official title was Task Forces of the Security Police and Security Service. Their purpose was to bring about a ‘rough and ready’ form of order and security to the occupied Soviet territories behind the areas where the German armies went forward and before the establishment of regular civil administration in the occupied territories. Less than half of the members of the Einsatzgruppen were SS men and a very large percentage were completely non-military personnel including interpreters, secretaries, teletype operators, truck drivers and other various support staff. Weber obtained this information from the Einsatzgruppen reports themselves, published in the official record of the International Military Tribunal. These figures were essentially accepted by all historians no matter what their views might be. (23 5745, 5746)
There were numerous estimates of the numbers of Jews supposedly killed by the Einsatzgruppen, ranging from about 3 million by a historian named Schwarz to 1 million by Gerald Reitlinger. Weber’s own opinion was that from 200,000 to 800,000 Jews at the most were shot by the Einsatzgruppen although it was very difficult to say. The total pre-war Jewish population of the occupied Soviet territories was about 4.7 million Jews. The great majority of these Jews fled or were evacuated by the Soviet government in 1941 when the German army moved into the Soviet Union. Based on that, Weber believed that no more than 1 million to 1.5 million Jews came under German control in the occupied territories. Yet it was commonly alleged that 2 million or 3 million Jews were shot by the Einsatzgruppen. (23-5747, 5748)
Paul Blobel, who was the commander of one of the Einsatzkommandos (a sub-unit of the Einsatzgruppen), was put on trial after the war and testified emphatically that the figures of dead given in the Einsatzgruppen reports were grossly exaggerated. Gustav Nosske was another Einsatzkommando leader who was put on trial and testified that the Einsatzgruppen report figures were grossly exaggerated. The fact that the reports were exaggerated, said Weber, was accepted by many historians. These included Gerald Reitlinger, who wrote The Final Solution, the historians Helmut Krausnick and Hans-Heinrich Wilhelm who wrote Die Truppe des Weltanschaungskrieges, William Shirer who wrote The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, British historian Tom Bower and German historian Werner Maser. Even Raul Hilberg, in The Destruction of the European Jews, stated that an affidavit made by Otto Ohlendorf was exaggerated. Weber noted that in October of 1943, Himmler gave a speech in which he complained that 95 out of 100 official reports he received were greatly exaggerated, unreliable or false. (23-5748 to 5756)
Weber had done a comparison of the figures of alleged Jewish dead in the Einsatzgruppen reports with the Korherr report. The Korherr report was an important SS statistical report on the movement and placement of Jews in Europe prepared at the request of Himmler by Richard Korherr, the official statistician with the SS. Korherr referred to about 636,000 Jews in the Soviet areas as being “resettled.” This had been interpreted to refer to Jews who were shot by the Einsatzgruppen. In Weber’s opinion, that interpretation was not necessarily true at all, but even if it was, the figure of 636,000 was incompatible with the figures given in most standard books about the number of Jews supposedly shot by the Einsatzgruppen, which varied from 1 million to 3 million. (23-5751, 5752)
The best remembered case of shootings of Jews in the occupied territories, said Weber, was that of Babi Yar. Babi Yar was a ravine outside of Kiev in the Ukraine. The Einsatzgruppen reports themselves stated that on September 29 and 30, 1941, 33,000 Jews were shot and killed at Babi Yar. Weber did not believe this for several reasons. Firstly, given the general exaggerations of the Einsatzgruppen reports, it was reasonable to believe that this figure was likewise exaggerated. Secondly, Paul Blobel, who was the commandant of the unit which allegedly carried out the shootings, testified after the war that the figure could not have been more than 16,000. In his book Hitler’s War, historian David Irving quoted a Soviet major who had defected to the Germans complaining to his German superiors that a year after Babi Yar Kiev was again overrun with Jews. Gerald Reitlinger, in his book The Final Solution, reported that in August of 1946, 100,000 Jews were living in Kiev. Weber pointed out that this was before the major rush of Jews from areas of the Soviet Union which had remained under Soviet control back to the areas which had been occupied by the Germans. (23-5753, 5754)
In the last several years, an important document on the Einsatzgruppen had come to light whose authenticity was accepted by Yad Vashem (and published in the book Documents on the Holocaust). The document was from Heydrich to the SS heads in the occupied Soviet territories and laid out explicitly that the task of the Einsatzgruppen was to shoot people who were dangerous to security such as snipers and saboteurs. Heydrich specifically stated that the only Jews to be shot immediately as Jews were those who were officials in the Communist Party and the Soviet government. (23-5755, 5756)
Weber testified that in the first edition of his book, Raul Hilberg claimed that there was an order to kill the Jews in Russia. He had now repudiated that claim and admitted that there might very well never have been an order by Hitler to exterminate the Jews in Russia or anywhere else. (23-5757)
Weber next turned to an examination of the accuracy of Did Six Million Really Die?. After each passage was either read to Weber or the general portion pointed out to him, Weber gave his opinion on the pamphlet’s accuracy. He commenced his analysis with the first sentence of the pamphlet:
In the following chapters the author has, he believes, brought together irrefutable evidence that the allegation that 6 million Jews died during the Second World War, as a direct result of official German policy of extermination, is utterly unfounded.
Weber testified that this statement was true; in his opinion, 6 million Jews did not die as a result of a German policy of extermination during the war. (23-5758)
A great deal of careful research into this question, however, has now convinced me beyond any doubt that the allegation is not merely an exaggeration but an invention of post-war propaganda.
Weber testified that this was not quite accurate as the essential extermination story began during the war in the fall of 1942. The first organization to make the charge seriously was the World Jewish Congress through its President, Rabbi Stephen Wise. In December of 1942, the Allied governments (the United States, Great Britain, the Soviet Union and France), issued a Joint Declaration claiming that the Germans were exterminating the Jews. Privately, however, the American and British officials responsible for what was going on with the Jews in Europe urged their superiors not to issue the declaration on the grounds that there was no evidence that such an extermination programme was being carried out. This was set out in David Wyman’s book The Abandonment of the Jews.
Weber pointed out that it was clear from the official history of the World Jewish Congress, Unity in Dispersion, published in 1948, that the World Jewish Congress was very instrumental in pressuring the Allied governments to issue the declaration in December of 1942. It was now known that some of the statements made by Rabbi Stephen Wise about the alleged extermination were utterly baseless and false. Wise claimed that in 1942 the Germans were turning the Jews into soap bars. No serious historian believed that anymore. Wise also claimed in November, 1942 at a press conference in Washington, D.C. that the Germans had stopped gassing the Jews and were adopting the more economical method of having teams of doctors line up Jews and inject them with poison in syringes. No serious historian believed that anymore either. But the World Jewish Congress, throughout the war, was a major vehicle for putting out these kinds of stories. (23-5758, 5759)
What was also clear from books such as Wyman’s The Abandonment of the Jews and Walter Laqueur’s The Terrible Secret, was that the Allies themselves did not believe their own propaganda about the extermination story. Some historians now claimed this showed the Allied governments were terribly callous and insensitive to the fate of the Jews. But what was absolutely clear, said Weber, was that the Allied officials, including President Roosevelt and top officials in the British government, did not take the extermination story seriously. (23-5760, 5761) While Monowitz (Auschwitz III) was bombed repeatedly by the Allies during the war because it was a major German industrial centre for the production of synthetic gasoline from coal, the alleged extermination camps of Auschwitz I and Birkenau were only bombed by accident. (23-5761)
Weber continued his analysis on page 4 of the booklet:
Of course, atrocity propaganda is nothing new. It has accompanied every conflict of the 20th century and doubtless will continue to do so.
Weber testified that in virtually every modern war, charges were made by each side against the other about the alleged commission of terrible atrocities. Afterwards, such charges were often shown to be false. An example was the charge made during the American Civil War by the Union that the South was carrying out a policy in the prisoner of war camps of killing Union prisoners. During the First World War, terrible lies were told by the British and American governments about the conduct of the Germans. After the war, these were shown fairly quickly to have been false. In Weber’s opinion, this passage from the pamphlet was absolutely correct. (23- 5762)
No such statements have been made after the Second World War. In fact, rather than diminish with the passage of years, the atrocity propaganda concerning the German occupation, and in particular their treatment of the Jews, has done nothing but increase its virulence and elaborate its catalogue of horrors …The ensuing pages will reveal this claim to be the most colossal piece of fiction and the most successful of deceptions;..
The extermination story was already clearly defined during the war, said Weber; what had increased since the war was the volume of emphasis given to it. At the Nuremberg trial, the fate of the Jews was by no means the dominant issue. The essential issue was German guilt for starting World War II. Today, however, there was far more in the mass media about the so-called “Holocaust” than about the question of German guilt for starting World War II. (23-5763)
Weber believed the last sentence in the quoted passage to be hyperbole and exaggeration on the part of Harwood. In Weber’s opinion, the Jews had a very hard fate during the war and many of them died and suffered in the same way that many other people in Europe suffered during the war. There was a basis for the Holocaust story; it was not just something made out of whole cloth. In 1938, there were millions of Jews living in Poland, Hungary, Romania and in 1948 those Jews were gone. It was nevertheless not accurate to say that 6 million Jews died during the war. That was fiction. (23-5764, 5765)
What has rendered the atrocity stories of the Second World War so uniquely different from those of the First? Why were the latter retracted while the former are reiterated louder than ever? Is it possible that the story of the Six Million Jews is serving a political purpose, even that it is a form of political blackmail?
Weber pointed out that the Crown Attorney had previously tried to suggest that people who were Holocaust revisionists believed that the Holocaust story was a gigantic hoax perpetrated by the Jews to get money for the state of Israel. In Weber’s opinion this was not accurate. It was essentially in the interests of the Allied governments that won the war and in the interests of the post-war West and East German governments which were set up by the Allies, to portray the Hitler regime in the worst possible light. The more terrible the Hitler regime could be portrayed, the more glorious became the Allied cause and the more legitimate became the post- war governments of East and West Germany. (23-5766) The state of Israel and Jews around the world benefited from the Holocaust story directly and indirectly. It was used to encourage a sense of solidarity among Jews based on fear through the argument that if a people as cultured and civilized as the Germans could commit this great crime, then anyone could. (23-5767)
To date, the staggering figure of six thousand million pounds has been paid out in compensation by the Federal Government of West Germany, mostly to the State of Israel…
The West German government had paid out massive reparations to the state of Israel and to Jews around the world since 1953, said Weber. The amount paid out so far was 80 billion marks and the West German government estimated that this figure would climb to 100 billion marks by the year 2000 or 2020. In recent exchange rates, that would be about 40 to 50 billion U.S. dollars. (23-5767, 5768)
Weber pointed out that Crown Attorney Pearson had tried to make a distinction between blaming the Nazis and blaming the Germans. But the former Prime Minister of Israel, Menachem Begin, once made it very clear that because of what the Germans did during the Hitler era, the German people would be guilty until the end of time. The reparations being paid out by the West German government today, said Weber, were paid out by people who were either not born or were just small children during the Hitler era. Yet they were being held responsible for what happened during that time. Thus, the German people were held as a people to be guilty for what happened during the war. Elie Wiesel, who was chairman of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, stated explicitly that the German people deserved to be hated for what they had done to the Jews during the war. (23-5768, 5769)
In Weber’s opinion, it was necessary after every war to put the hatreds and passions of the war behind in order for peoples to live in harmony. Keeping alive such hatreds on a permanent scale served only to create discord. (23-5769)
One could scarcely miss the object of this diatribe, with its insidious hint about “multi-racial partnership”. Thus the accusation of the Six Million is not only used to undermine the principle of nationhood and national pride, but it threatens the survival of the Race itself. It is wielded over the heads of the populace, rather as the threat of hellfire and damnation was in the Middle Ages. Many countries of the Anglo-Saxon world, notably Britain and America, are today facing the gravest danger in their history, the danger posed by the alien races in their midst. Unless something is done in Britain to halt the immigration and assimilation of Africans and Asians into our country, we are faced in the near future, quite apart from the bloodshed of racial conflict, with the biological alteration and destruction of the British people as they have existed here since the coming of the Saxons. In short, we are threatened with the irrecoverable loss of our European culture and racial heritage. But what happens if a man dares to speak of the race problem, of its biological and political implications? He is branded as that most heinous of creatures, a “racialist”. And what is racialism, of course, but the very hallmark of the Nazi! They (so everyone is told, anyway) murdered Six Million Jews because of racialism, so it must be a very evil thing indeed. When Enoch Powell drew attention to the dangers posed by coloured immigration into Britain in one of his early speeches, a certain prominent Socialist raised the spectre of Dachau and Auschwitz to silence his presumption.
Thus any rational discussion of the problems of Race and the effort to preserve racial integrity is effectively discouraged. No one could have anything but admiration for the way in which the Jews have sought to preserve their race through so many centuries, and continue to do so today. In this effort they have frankly been assisted by the story of the Six .Million, which, almost like a religious myth, has stressed the need for greater Jewish racial solidarity. Unfortunately, it has worked in quite the opposite way for all other peoples, rendering them impotent in the struggle for self preservation. The aim in the following pages is quite simply to tell the Truth. The distinguished American historian Harry Elmer Barnes once wrote that “An attempt to make a competent, objective and truthful investigation of the extermination question … is surely the most precarious venture that an historian or demographer could undertake today.” In attempting this precarious task, it is hoped to make some contribution, not only to historical truth, but towards lifting the burden of a lie from our own shoulders, so that we may freely confront the dangers which threaten us all.
Weber did not believe Harwood’s paragraphs concerning the race problem were all that relevant. There were many Holocaust revisionists who were quite anti-racist but who also did not accept the Holocaust story. (27-5770)
Harry Elmer Barnes was one of the most highly regarded American historians during the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s. Barnes was virtually blacklisted in the later years of his life, however, because of his view that the Germans were not primarily responsible for the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939. For that he suffered a great deal, said Weber. Barnes was also strongly influenced in his later years by the writings of Paul Rassinier and came to believe that the Holocaust story was not true. In an article written for the Rampart Journal in the summer of 1967, Barnes cast doubt on the extermination story and called for a sober and unbiased investigation of the entire question. (23-5771 to 5773)
Weber turned next to passages on page 5 of the booklet:
Rightly or wrongly, the Germany of Adolf Hitler considered the Jews to be a disloyal and avaricious element within the national community, as well as a force of decadence in Germany’s cultural life…The fact that Karl Marx was a Jew and that Jews such as Rosa Luxembourg and Karl Liebknecht were disproportionately prominent in the leadership of revolutionary movements in Germany, also tended to convince the Nazis of the powerful internationalist and Communist tendencies of the Jewish people themselves.
Weber agreed with the first statement in this passage and pointed out that it was a view that was not unique to Nazi Germany. The Jews had been forced out of many countries throughout their history. During the 1930s, other countries such as Hungary and Romania also had anti-Jewish laws. (23-5774)
Karl Marx was Jewish by ancestry with rabbis on both sides of his family. His father, however, had converted to Lutheranism. Rosa Luxemburg was also Jewish by ancestry. It was true, said Weber, that Jews were very disproportionately involved in the Communist movement both in Germany and in other countries. This convinced not only the Nazis but many other people, including Winston Churchill, that the Jews were dangerously tied to the international Communist movement. Winston Churchill wrote a long article voicing these opinions in the Illustrated Sunday Herald in London in 1919. Churchill wrote that the Jews should guard against being involved any more than they were in either the Zionist or Communist movements and that it was a dangerous portent of things to come if they persisted. (23-5775)
Our concern is simply with the fact that, believing of the Jews as they did, the Nazis’ solution to the problem was to deprive them of their influence within the nation by various legislative acts, and most important of all, to encourage their emigration from the country altogether. By 1939, the great majority of German Jews had emigrated, all of them with a sizeable proportion of their assets. Never at any time had the Nazi leadership even contemplated a policy of genocide towards them.
Weber testified that the German policy up to 1940 or 1941 was to encourage the Jews to emigrate from Germany, especially to Palestine. This policy was welcomed by Zionist leaders at the time because they also took the view that the Jews of Germany were first and foremost Jews and not Germans. Raul Hilberg made clear in his book that in fact Jews did leave with a very substantial part of their assets. The last statement of the quoted passage was accurate, said Weber. In the context of the pre war Jewish policy, not even those who believed in the Holocaust story claimed there was any extermination programme before the war. (23-5776, 5777)
It is very significant, however, that certain Jews were quick to interpret these policies of internal discrimination as equivalent to extermination itself. A 1936 anti German propaganda book by Leon Feuchtwanger and others entitled Der Gelbe Fleck: Die Ausrotung von 500,000 deutschen Juden (The Yellow Spot: The Extermination of 500,000 German Jews, Paris 1936), presents a typical example. Despite its baselessness in fact, the annihilation of the Jews is discussed from the first pages — straightforward emigration being regarded as the physical “extermination” of German Jewry. The Nazi concentration camps for political prisoners are also seen as potential instruments of genocide, and special reference is made to the 100 Jews still detained in Dachau in 1936, of whom 60 had been there since 1933. A further example was the sensational book by the German-Jewish Communist, Hans Beimler, called Four Weeks in the Hands of Hitler’s Hell Hounds: The Nazi Murder Camp of Dachau…The encouragement of Jewish emigration should not be confused with the purpose of concentration camps in pre war Germany. These were used for the detention of political opponents and subversives — principally liberals, Social Democrats and Communists of all kinds, of whom a proportion were Jews such as Hans Beimler. Unlike the millions enslaved in the Soviet Union, the German concentration camp population was always small; Reitlinger admits that between 1934 and 1938 it seldom exceeded 20,000 throughout the whole of Germany, and the number of Jews was never more than 3,000. (The SS: Alibi of a Nation, London, 1956, page 253).
Weber testified that the first sentence of this passage was true; Feuchtwanger, who was a Communist and a Jew, charged that the policy the Hitler government was carrying out in 1936 was “extermination.” This was propaganda and hyperbole, said Weber, and a number of other Jewish leaders at the time used similarly exaggerated language to describe the pre-war German policy. Until November 1939 the only Jews in concentration camps in Germany were Jews who were put there for some political or criminal reason. They were not there simply because they were Jews. The number of people in the camps at that time was very small and most were involved in the leadership of the Communist and Social Democratic movements. (23-5778, 5779)
Hans Beimler was a Communist and the book written by him was published by a Communist publishing house. It was typical of the kind of propaganda that the Communists put out during that period of time. Weber believed that Beimler’s early writing had significance in the development of the Holocaust story. Even before the war, there were wide and extensive reports of grossly exaggerated claims about Hitler’s Germany by those who were his enemies, namely, Communists and Jews. It was hardly surprising therefore, when war broke out and it was much harder to know what was going on in Europe, that the stories were even more intense in their volume and character. (23-5780)
Weber had checked the reference to Reitlinger in the last sentence of the passage. Reitlinger stated that 20,000 was approximately the number of total concentration camp inmates in all of Germany; this in a country of about 60 million people. (23 5781)
The Nazi view of Jewish emigration was not limited to a negative policy of simple expulsion, but was formulated along the lines of modern Zionism.
In Weber’s opinion, this was misleading. Zionism put forward the view that the Jews were not merely a religious group but also a nationality, that they should have a country of their own, and that Jews were first and foremost Jews and not citizens of whatever country they lived in. That also happened to be Hitler’s views and the Nazis’ views. Because their views coincided, the Nazis and the Zionists co-operated. This co-operation was laid out in great detail in a book by a Jewish author, Edwin Black, entitled The Transfer Agreement. The Transfer Agreement of Haavara was signed in 1933 by the German government and the Jewish Agency for Palestine. It arranged for Jews emigrating from Germany to Palestine to take their property with them as a way to encourage Jewish emigration to Palestine. The agreement remained in effect until after the outbreak of World War II. (23-5782)
The founder of political Zionism in the 19th century, Theodore Herzl, in his work The Jewish State, had originally conceived of Madagascar as a national homeland for the Jews, and this possibility was seriously studied by the Nazis…The Germans were not original in proposing Jewish emigration to Madagascar; the Polish Government had already considered the scheme in respect of their own Jewish population, and in 1937 they sent the Michael Lepecki expedition to Madagascar, accompanied by Jewish representatives, to investigate the problems involved.
Weber testified that the booklet’s statement that Herzl had originally conceived of Madagascar as a homeland for the Jews was an error. From the very beginning, Herzl wanted to have Palestine as the national homeland. Although there was a brief period when Guinea and Uganda were considered, they were quickly rejected by the Zionists. (23-5783)
The booklet’s statement concerning the Polish government was true. The Polish government was the first government to take up this idea and it sent an expedition to Madagascar to look into it. At that time, there was much speculation by leaders in Romania, Hungary, Poland and even France that there should be some place for the Jews to go to or be sent to. Madagascar was considered for that purpose because it was believed that the Arabs felt so strongly about Palestine that emigration there would only result in conflict. The island of Madagascar was a much larger and more beautiful place and it was felt that it would cause far fewer problems if the Jews went there. (23-5784)
In 1938 the Evian Conference was called. It was initiated largely by Franklin Roosevelt to deal with the question of Jewish refugees from Germany and the whole question of what should be done with the Jews. Jewish leaders were extremely disappointed with the conference because virtually none of the governments of the world, as much as they gave lip service to sympathy for the Jews, were willing to allow them to come to their own countries. The U.S. government often protested Hitler’s policy towards the Jews but they were not willing to allow Jews to come to the United States. The German government made a big deal about this and said it only confirmed that Germany was right in trying to get rid of them. (23-5785)
Weber turned to page 6 of the booklet:
However, by 1939 the scheme of Jewish emigration to Madagascar had gained the most favour in German circles.
In Weber’s opinion, the correct date was 1940, not 1939. The Madagascar plan was only seriously considered by German officials in 1940 after the fall of France because Madagascar was a French colony. (23-5787)
By 1939, the consistent efforts of the German Government to secure the departure of Jews from the Reich had resulted in the emigration of 400,000 German Jews from a total population of about 600,000, and an additional 480,000 emigrants from Austria and Czechoslovakia, which constituted almost their entire Jewish populations.
This passage was essentially accurate, said Weber. There were approximately 600,000 Jews in the German Reich territory before Hitler took power and about 400,000 emigrated by 1939 or 1940. A very substantial portion of the Jews from Germany proper, Austria, Sudetenland and Czechoslovakia emigrated before the outbreak of the war. (23-5789)
So eager were the Germans to secure this emigration that Eichmann even established a training centre in Austria, where young Jews could learn farming in anticipation of being smuggled illegally to Palestine (Manvell and Frankl, SS and Gestapo, p. 60).
In Weber’s opinion, this was true. These training centres were set up not only in Austria but also in Germany proper. They were carried out in co-operation with the Zionist movement because the Zionists wanted very much to encourage Jews living in Germany to be productive on the soil, to be involved in new forms of trade and so forth. (23-5789)
Had Hitler cherished any intention of exterminating the Jews, it is inconceivable that he would have allowed more than 800,000 to leave Reich territory with the bulk of their wealth, much less considered plans for their mass emigration to Palestine or Madagascar.
Weber thought this was a fair statement although 800,000 might be a bit too high for the number of Jews who left. Obviously, said Weber, if Hitler had intended right from the beginning to exterminate the Jews, he wouldn’t have encouraged them for years to move to Palestine and wouldn’t have considered deporting them to Madagascar. (23-5790)
With the coming of the war, the situation regarding the Jews altered drastically. It is not widely known that world Jewry declared itself to be a belligerent party in the Second World War, and there was therefore ample basis under international law for the Germans to intern the Jewish population as a hostile force…All Jews had thus been declared agents willing to prosecute a war against the German Reich, and as a consequence, Himmler and Heydrich were eventually to begin the policy of internment.
It was not until 1941 that there was really a drastic change in German policy, said Weber. In fact, after the outbreak of war, the German government still encouraged Jewish emigration illegally to Palestine despite British objections and blockade. Chaim Weizmann, who at the time was the principal Zionist leader, issued a statement immediately after the outbreak of war in 1939 declaring in the name of the world’s Jews that they considered themselves on the side of Britain. Whether this gave the Germans the right to intern the Jews as a hostile force was questionable. The question of how much legitimacy under international law Chaim Weizmann had to speak in the name of World Jewry was a debatable point. (23-5792)
Weber testified that the last sentence of the passage was essentially inaccurate. The German policy of deporting Jews to the east, which began in 1941, was not in response to the declaration of war by Chaim Weizmann. It was done because they wanted the Jews out of Europe. Once the war really got going, it was impossible to send the Jews to Palestine or to Madagascar because the seas were controlled by the British. So the Germans decided to deport the Jews to the east, first to Poland and then to the occupied Soviet territories. (23-5793)
It is worth noting that the United States and Canada had already interned all Japanese aliens and citizens of Japanese descent in detention camps before the Germans applied the same security measures against the Jews of Europe. Moreover, there had been no such evidence or declaration of disloyalty by these Japanese Americans as had been given by Weizmann. The British, too, during the Boer War, interned all the women and children of the population, and thousands had died as a result, yet in no sense could the British be charged with wanting to exterminate the Boers.
In Weber’s opinion, the first sentence of this passage was accurate. It was not hard to understand that the United States government, right after Pearl Harbour, considered the Japanese dangerous and it was not hard to understand that the German government considered the Jews a hostile population. Weber believed the second sentence was a debatable point since no German Jews made any declaration of disloyalty although Weizmann claimed to speak on behalf of the Jews of the world.
Weber had done a great deal of research into the internment camps set up by the British during the Boer War. The British carried out a very ruthless war against the Boers to seize control of the gold and diamonds in the areas of Transvaal and the Orange Free State. The British rounded up all the women and children of the Boers and put them in concentration camps where about 27,000 of them died under appalling conditions. This was the policy, however, which broke the back of the guerrilla war carried out by the Boers against the British. (23-5794, 5795)
The detention of Jews in the occupied territories of Europe served two essential purposes from the German viewpoint. The first was to prevent unrest and subversion; Himmler had informed Mussolini on October 11th, 1942, that German policy towards the Jews had altered during wartime entirely for reasons of military security. He complained that thousands of Jews in the occupied regions were conducting partisan warfare, sabotage and espionage, a view confirmed by official Soviet information given to Raymond Arthur Davis that no less than 35,000 European Jews were waging partisan war under Tito in Yugoslavia. As a result, Jews were to be transported to restricted areas and detention camps, both in Germany, and especially after March 1942, in the Government-General of Poland.
Weber repeated that the German policy to deport the Jews to the east was not primarily motivated by security considerations, although it was a consideration that became more important as the war went on. The conversation between Himmler and Mussolini on October 11, 1942, which dealt with Jewish partisan warfare, was confined essentially to Jews in the occupied Soviet territories and not Jews in general. (23-5796)
Weber thought the dates in the last sentence of the passage were a bit off. The Germans began putting Jews in ghettos in Poland fairly soon after they took control in 1939 and the deportations of the Jews to the east began in October 1941. (23-5797)
As the war proceeded, the policy developed of using Jewish detainees for labour in the war- effort. The question of labour is fundamental when considering the alleged plan of genocide against the Jews, for on grounds of logic alone the latter would entail the most senseless waste of manpower, time and energy while prosecuting a war of survival on two fronts.
In Weber’s opinion, this was a very good and valid point. In 1942, it was decided that the Jews were to be used extensively in war production activities. The Jews were a valuable source of labour for the Germans. As late as 1944, Hitler himself was concerned about using Jewish labour for the German war effort. (23-5798, 5799)
Weber had seen photographs of Monowitz (Auschwitz III) taken in 1942, 1943 and 1944 located in the Dürrfeld file. This file contained documents and photographs filed in Dürrfeld’s defence in his war crimes trial after the war for alleged mistreatment of prisoners in Monowitz. The photographs showed prisoners from Birkenau and Auschwitz I in their striped uniforms working in Monowitz. This was relevant to the extermination allegation because it was very hard to reconcile the fact that prisoners from Birkenau, the alleged major extermination centre, were allowed to move around freely in Monowitz where there were many civilian workers who came in from the outside. It would have been virtually impossible, said Weber, to keep an extermination programme at Birkenau secret in such circumstances. Weber noted that exterminationist Walter Laqueur made the same point in his book The Terrible Secret and was quite baffled by it. (23-5799 to 5801)
Certainly after the attack on Russia, the idea of compulsory labour had taken precedence over German plans for Jewish emigration.
This statement, said Weber, was partly true and partly untrue. The idea was for the Jews to be deported to the east and also used for labour, so it was an effort to reconcile these two policies. (23-5801)
The protocol of a conversation between Hitler and the Hungarian regent Horthy on April 17th, 1943, reveals that the German leader personally requested Horthy to release 100,000 Hungarian Jews for work in the “pursuit-plane programme” of the Luftwaffe at a time when the aerial bombardment of Germany was increasing (Reitlinger, Die Endlösung, Berlin, 1956, p. 478). This took place at a time when, supposedly, the Germans were already seeking to exterminate the Jews, but Hitler’s request clearly demonstrates the priority aim of expanding his labour force.
In harmony with this programme, concentration camps became, in fact, industrial complexes. At every camp where Jews and other nationalities were detained, there were large industrial plants and factories supplying material for the German war effort — the Buna rubber factory at Bergen-Belsen, for example, Buna and I.G. Farben Industrie at Auschwitz, and the electrical firm of Siemens at Ravensbrück.
This passage was correct in Weber’s opinion. Himmler ordered that concentration camp inmates were to be used as extensively as possible in war production. Buna was the name for artificial rubber derived from coal. The Germans had to produce artificial rubber because they did not have access to sources of natural rubber from Southeast Asia or Latin America and had a programme at Monowitz for this purpose. It never got very far, however, and instead Monowitz was devoted almost exclusively to producing synthetic gasoline. As far as Weber knew, there was no Buna rubber factory at Bergen-Belsen, so that statement in the booklet was not correct. (23-5801 to 5803)
Weber turned to page 7 of the booklet:
In many cases, special concentration camp money notes were issued as payment for labour, enabling prisoners to buy extra rations from camp shops. The Germans were determined to obtain the maximum economic return from the concentration camp system, an object wholly at variance with any plan to exterminate millions of people in them. It was the function of the SS Economy and Administration Office, headed by Oswald Pohl, to see that the concentration camps became major industrial producers.
Weber testified that camp money was used in such camps as Buchenwald and was called Lagergeld. Numerous former inmates testified to the use of such camp money and a similar kind of currency was also issued in the Lodz and Theresienstadt ghettos by the Jewish administration. (23-5804)
Weber noted that the German guards at Mauthausen and Buchenwald were summarily shot by the Americans when those camps were captured by the Americans. It was recorded in the book Inside the Vicious Heart by Robert H. Abzug. It was also recorded by Marguerite Higgins who was a very prominent American journalist at that time and who was an eyewitness to the shootings at Buchenwald. (23-5805)
Oswald Pohl, said Weber, was the head of the SS Economy and Administration Office, and the concentration camps were under his control. He was subordinate to Himmler. Pohl was very concerned with getting maximum labour out of the camps during the war; this was confirmed in numerous documents which were published in the Nuremberg series and in correspondence between Himmler and Pohl. (23 5806)
Defence attorney Christie asked Weber whether he was familiar with the historian Helmut Diwald. Weber testified that Diwald was a professor of history at the University of Erlangen in West Germany who had written, in 1978 or 1979, a massive 760 page book entitled Geschichte der Deutschen (History of the Germans). The book was a comprehensive overview of German history and contained two pages devoted to the ‘final solution’. In those two pages, he called into question many of the commonly-held assumptions about the Holocaust extermination story. Diwald wrote that the Holocaust media campaign consisted in large part of distortions, misrepresentations and lies designed to morally degradate and disqualify the German nations and the German people as a whole. He said that many of the stories said about what happened with the Jews during the war were not true. He pointed out that it was once claimed that extermination camps operated in Germany proper and that later this claim was dropped even though for a time visitors were shown a room at Dachau which was supposed to be a gas chamber and in fact wasn’t. He wrote that the ‘final solution’ policy of the Germans was one of deportation to the east for use as labour, and he concluded by stating that despite all of the literature that had been written on the subject, the most important questions of what happened to the Jews during the war were still not clear. The two pages caused a big sensation in Germany when they came out. Weber was the first to translate and publish them in English. (23-5807, 5808)
As a result of raising these questions, Diwald’s book was immediately withdrawn from circulation even though it had been selling very well. The unsold portion of the 100,000 copies which had been printed were destroyed and, without his approval, the two offending pages were hastily rewritten and substituted in a new edition. These rewritten pages were more or less acceptable to the powers-that-be. (23-5809)
In historical writing this was a very uncommon phenomenon, but in West Germany and in some other countries it was common with regard to this one issue, said Weber. Notably in West Germany and in Communist countries, the calling into question of the commonly-accepted view of the Holocaust was met with official and semi-official suppression and persecution. The case of Helmut Diwald, a reputable and prominent professor of history, was a prime example of this process. (23-5809)
It is a remarkable fact, however, that well into the war period, the Germans continued to implement the policy of Jewish emigration. The fall of France in 1940 enabled the German Government to open serious negotiations with the French for the transfer of European Jews to Madagascar. A memorandum of August, 1942 from Luther, Secretary-of-State in the German Foreign Office, reveals that he had conducted these negotiations between July and December 1940, when they were terminated by the French. A circular from Luther’s department dated August 15th, 1940 shows that the details of the German plan had been worked out by Eichmann, for it is signed by his assistant, Dannecker. Eichmann had in fact been commissioned in August to draw up a detailed Madagascar Plan, and Dannecker was employed in research on Madagascar at the French Colonial Office (Reitlinger, The Final Solution, p. 77). The proposals of August 15th were that an inter European bank was to finance the emigration of four million Jews throughout a phased programme. Luther’s 1942 memorandum shows that Heydrich had obtained Himmler’s approval of this plan before the end of August and had also submitted it to Göring. It certainly met with Hitler’s approval, for as early as June 17th his interpreter, Schmidt, recalls Hitler observing to Mussolini that “One could found a State of Israel in Madagascar” (Schmidt, Hitler’s Interpreter, London, 1951, p. 178).
Weber testified that this entire passage was essentially accurate except for two statements about the Madagascar plan. It was misleading to say that there were “serious negotiations” between the Germans and French concerning the Madagascar plan. The German government considered the feasibility of the Madagascar plan and would simply have presented it to the French at a later date. In addition, the Luther Memorandum, which did discuss the Madagascar plan, did not include any discussion about negotiations with the French. Hitler’s exact words to Mussolini were that ‘One could found a Jewish state on Madagascar’, not ‘state of Israel’. (23 5810 to 5813)
Although the French terminated the Madagascar negotiations in December, 1940, Poliakov, the director of the Centre of Jewish Documentation in Paris, admits that the Germans nevertheless pursued the scheme, and that Eichmann was still busy with it throughout 1941. Eventually, however, it was rendered impractical by the progress of the war, in particular by the situation after the invasion of Russia, and on February 10th, 1942, the Foreign Office was informed that the plan had been temporarily shelved. This ruling, sent to the Foreign Office by Luther’s assistant, Rademacher, is of great importance, because it demonstrates conclusively that the term “Final Solution” meant only the emigration of Jews, and also that transportation to the eastern ghettos and concentration camps such as Auschwitz constituted nothing but an alternative plan of evacuation. The directive reads: “The war with the Soviet Union has in the meantime created the possibility of disposing of other territories for the Final Solution. In consequence the Führer has decided that the Jews should be evacuated not to Madagascar but to the East. Madagascar need no longer therefore be considered in connection with the Final Solution” (Reitlinger, ibid., p. 79). The details of this evacuation had been discussed a month earlier at the Wannsee Conference in Berlin, which we shall examine below.
It was not true to say that the French terminated the Madagascar negotiations, said Weber. It was true that the Germans pursued the scheme till late in 1941, although Weber did not know if it was Eichmann who was involved. It was true that the Madagascar plan was rendered impractical by the progress of the war, but not for the reason given by Harwood. It was rendered impractical because it was clear the war was going to continue for quite a while and the British controlled all of the sea lanes to Madagascar. In Weber’s opinion, “final solution” was the term that the Germans used to describe their policy of ridding Europe of the Jews first by emigration and later by deportation to the east. The Rademacher memorandum of February 10, 1942 was confirmation that the so-called “final solution” was not one of extermination but deportation. The Wannsee Conference protocol was another German document which confirmed this. (23-5814 to 5817)
Weber pointed out that when the Allies took control of Germany in 1945, they confiscated an enormous quantity of German documents relating to the German wartime policy towards the Jews and of these thousands and thousands of documents, there was not one which referred to an extermination programme or policy. This was mind-boggling, said Weber, when one considered that this programme was alleged to have happened over a three-year period over an entire continent and allegedly involved millions of people. (23-5818)
Reitlinger and Poliakov both make the entirely unfounded supposition that because the Madagascar Plan had been shelved, the Germans must necessarily have been thinking of “extermination”. Only a month later, however, on March 7th, 1942, Goebbels wrote a memorandum in favour of the Madagascar Plan as a “final solution” of the Jewish question (Manvell and Frankl, Dr. Goebbels, London, 1960, p. 165).
Weber testified that this passage was accurate and agreed with Harwood’s opinion in the first sentence. In July of 1942 Hitler himself stated that the Jews would be taken to Madagascar after the war was over. It was during this period of time that the policy of sending the Jews to Madagascar was replaced with a policy of deporting the Jews to the east where they would be kept until the war was over.(23 5819)
Weber was familiar with a later entry (on March 27) in the Goebbels diary which was contradictory to the one quoted by Harwood. This later entry was widely quoted to support the extermination thesis. Weber noted, however, that it was not consistent with entries in the diary like the one of March 7th, nor was it consistent with entries at a later date from the Goebbels diary or with German documents of the time. In Weber’s opinion, there was great doubt about the authenticity of the entire Goebbels diaries because they were written on a typewriter. There was therefore no way of verifying if they were accurate. The U.S. government itself indicated that it could take no responsibility for the accuracy of the diaries as a whole. (23-5820, 5821)
In the meantime he approved of the Jews being “concentrated in the East”. Later Goebbels memoranda also stress deportation to the East (i.e., the Government General of Poland) and lay emphasis on the need for compulsory labour there; once the policy of evacuation to the East had been inaugurated, the use of Jewish labour became a fundamental part of the operation. It is perfectly clear from the foregoing that the term “Final Solution” was applied both to Madagascar and to the Eastern territories, and that therefore it meant only the deportation of the Jews.
Even as late as May 1944, the Germans were prepared to allow the emigration of one million European Jews from Europe. An account of this proposal is given by Alexander Weissberg, a prominent Soviet Jewish scientist deported during the Stalin purges, in his book Die Geschichte von Joel Brand (Cologne, 1956).
Weber knew of no Goebbels memorandum stressing deportation. There were other German documents and memorandum which did but Goebbels had no responsibility for Jewish policy. Weber would have agreed completely with the sentence if it said “German memoranda” or “official memoranda” instead of “Goebbels.”
The rest of the passage was correct, said Weber. The last portion referred to what was called the Europa Plan about which there was very little information. Late in the war, there was a programme to exchange large numbers of Jews for trucks or money. Some Jews were sent from Hungary to Switzerland to show that the Germans were willing to carry it out, but the plan fell through. (23-5822 to 5824)
Defence counsel Christie turned Weber’s attention to the subject of Jewish population statistics. Weber testified that statistics about the Jewish population in Europe were almost completely unverifiable. What Harwood had written was speculative because it was a kind of opinion of the author based on his reading of the figures. It was difficult to draw conclusions because the figures themselves were suspect.
The largest Jewish populations in Europe were in Poland and the Soviet Union before the war. When the Germans took over the western half of Poland in 1939, large numbers of Jews escaped into Soviet-occupied Poland, but the exact figure was unknown. It was not known how many Jews came under German control when the Germans later took over the rest of Poland and the Soviet territories. It was known that a very high percentage, 80 percent, of the Jews in the occupied Soviet territories were deported by the Soviets or fled in 1941. In Weber’s opinion, any specific figure like 6 million or 1 million was speculative. The only thing which could be done was to make an educated guess based upon a careful reading of the figures. (23-5825)
With respect to the chapter on “Population and Emigration” in Did Six Million Really Die?, Weber testified that he agreed with Harwood’s statement that the majority of German Jews succeeded in leaving Germany before the war broke out. But he believed that Harwood’s conclusion that the total number of Jews under German influence was 3.5 million was speculation, just as the figures in Hilberg’s and Reitlinger’s books were nothing more than educated guesses. (23-5827)
Weber turned to page 9 of the booklet:
So far as is known, the first accusation against the Germans of the mass murder of Jews in war- time Europe was made by the Polish Jew Rafael Lemkin in his book Axis Rule in Occupied Europe, published in New York in 1943…His book claimed that the Nazis had destroyed millions of Jews, perhaps as many as six millions. This, by 1943, would have been remarkable indeed, since the action was allegedly started only in the summer of 1942. At such a rate, the entire world Jewish population would have been exterminated by 1945.
Weber testified that the first accusation of mass murder was not made by Lemkin. The first major accusation that the Germans were carrying out the mass murder of Jews was made in the fall of 1942 by the World Jewish Congress and was particularly promoted by its president, Stephen Wise. Lemkin’s book picked up on the theme but his book actually wasn’t relevant to the extermination story. Nor did the Lemkin book make the statement claimed by Harwood. The last part of the passage was the opinion of the author, said Weber, but since the first part of the passage was not true, the conclusion wasn’t true. Weber subsequently found, however, that Paul Rassinier had made this claim in one of his books and Harwood had obviously relied upon it. (23- 5828, 5829, 6158)
After the war, propaganda estimates spiralled to heights even more fantastic. Kurt Gerstein, an anti-Nazi who claimed to have infiltrated the SS, told the French interrogator Raymond Cartier that he knew that no less than forty million concentration camp internees had been gassed. In his first signed memorandum of April 26th, 1945, he reduced the figure to 25 million, but even this was too bizarre for French Intelligence and in his second memorandum, signed at Rottweil on May 4th, 1945, he brought the figure closer to the six million preferred at the Nuremberg Trials. Gerstein’s sister was congenitally insane and died by euthanasia, which may well suggest a streak of mental instability in Gerstein himself. He had, in fact, been convicted in 1936 of sending eccentric mail through the post. After his two “confessions” he hanged himself at Cherche Midi prison in Paris.
Kurt Gerstein made a statement that he thought the Germans had killed 20 or 40 million people, said Weber, but he did not specify Jews and he did not say that they were gassed. Harwood’s statement was therefore only partly true. No serious historian today accepted everything that Gerstein said because he made such fantastic and ludicrous statements. This applied particularly to the figures he cited. Established historians nevertheless used portions of Gerstein’s statements which they thought supported their thesis. Gerstein was quoted in virtually every important book on the Holocaust, including Hilberg. Revisionists usually called Gerstein’s statements into question. In the standard biography of Gerstein, there was speculation that Gerstein was probably insane. Some people had speculated that Gerstein was murdered, but Weber thought the evidence suggested that he really did commit suicide. (23-5831, 5832)
Gerstein alleged that during the war he passed on information concerning the murder of Jews to the Swedish Government through a German baron, but for some inexplicable reason his report was “filed away and forgotten”. He also claimed that in August 1942 he informed the Papal nuncio in Berlin about the whole “extermination programme”, but the reverend person merely told him to “Get out”. The Gerstein statements abound with claims to have witnessed the most gigantic mass executions (twelve thousand in a single day at Belzec), while the second memorandum describes a visit by Hitler to a concentration camp in Poland on June 6th, 1942 which is known never to have taken place.
In Weber’s opinion, the first part of this passage was misleading. The baron was a Swedish baron whom Gerstein met on the night train from Warsaw to Berlin. Gerstein buttonholed him, according to one of his affidavits, and told him the Germans were killing all the Jews. The Swedish government didn’t take any notice of what Gerstein said until after the war when quite a bit was made of it. Gerstein tried to go to the Papal nuncio but was turned away.
Gerstein made the claims concerning Belzec, as stated by Harwood, and in fact, Gerstein’s statement remained one of the most important pieces of evidence supporting the claim that there were large numbers of Jews gassed there. The statement which Gerstein made concerning the trip by Hitler to a concentration camp in Poland was typical of the kind of false statements made in the Gerstein statements. Weber believed it was illegitimate to present the Gerstein statements as valid historical documents as had been done by Holocaust historians. (23-5833 to 5837)
Weber turned to page 10 of the booklet:
The story of six million Jews exterminated during the war was given final authority at the Nuremberg Trials by the statement of Dr. Wilhelm Hoettl. He had been an assistant of Eichmann’s, but was in fact a rather strange person in the service of American Intelligence who had written several books under the pseudonym of Walter Hagen. Hoettl also worked for Soviet espionage, collaborating with two Jewish emigrants from Vienna, Perger and Verber, who acted as US officers during the preliminary inquiries of the Nuremberg Trials. It is remarkable that the testimony of this highly dubious person Hoettl is said to constitute the only “proof” regarding the murder of six million Jews.
The Hoettl statement was important but Weber did not agree with Harwood that it was the final authority. Hoettl made an affidavit saying that Eichmann told him that 6 million Jews had been killed. Eichmann later disputed that he had ever said this; he claimed he did not specify “Jews” but said only that millions of enemies of the Reich had been killed. The 6 million figure, however, gained much of its credibility from the Hoettl statement. Weber nevertheless thought it was misleading to say that Hoettl’s statement was the only proof regarding the murder of 6 million Jews. To be fair, said Weber, the exterminationists didn’t say they believed the figure just because Hoettl said it; they relied on quite a number of other things to support the figure. (23- 5837 to 5842)
It should be emphasised straight away that there is not a single document in existence which proves that the Germans intended to, or carried out, the deliberate murder of Jews.
Weber agreed with this statement if Harwood was referring to German documents. If Harwood meant documents of any kind, including affidavits made by people after the war, then in Weber’s opinion the statement was not true. Weber reiterated that in all of the captured German documents, there was not a single one that referred to any German extermination programme or policy. Weber thought that the use of the word “proves” by Harwood was misleading because no one document proved anything. It could only substantiate or give credence to a given idea. (23-5842 to 5844)
March 23, 1988
Weber testified that in his book The Destruction of the European Jews, Raul Hilberg estimated that the Jewish losses during World War II were 5.1 million. In his first edition, Hilberg made no effort to justify that figure; in the second edition he did make an effort to justify the figure in a complicated manner which Weber thought was highly speculative. It was the same kind of speculation that Harwood was guilty of in Did Six Million Really Die?. (23-5856)
Hilberg included Jews who died for any reason during the war in the term “Jewish losses.” A Jew who was deported from Germany to Lodz and who died of a heart attack would be counted as a victim of the Holocaust. No clear distinction was made between those who were allegedly the victims of some German programme and those who simply died in the course of the war. (23-5856)
In Weber’s opinion, Hilberg’s figure of 5.1 million Jewish dead was completely inconsistent with the very important Korherr report. Hilberg himself made no effort to reconcile his figures with the report. (23-5857)
In the major book on the Einsatzgruppen entitled Die Truppe des Weltanschaungskrieges, the two authors calculated that if all the figures in the German reports were added up, there would be a total of 2.2 million Jewish dead. The authors admitted frankly that this was impossible and conceded that the Einsatzgruppen report figures were exaggerated. In his book, The Destruction of the European Jews, Hilberg came up with a figure of 1.3 million Jewish dead in the occupied Soviet territories, which by implication meant that he too believed the Einsatzgruppen reports were exaggerated. Hilberg didn’t say so outright, however, which was typical of how he operated. Even the figure of 1.3 million was not believable in Weber’s opinion, because it was known that the great majority of Jews fled or were evacuated by the Soviet government before the Germans invaded in 1941. (23-5857)
As recorded in his Table-Talk, the authenticity of which was not questioned, Hitler said on July 27, 1942 that the Jews would have to be cleared out of Europe and he speculated they should be sent to Russia. In late 1942 or 1943, Hitler stated that the Jews should be grateful to him for wanting nothing more than a bit of hard work from them. When the Soviets captured Majdanek in 1944 and immediately put out reports that it had been an enormous extermination centre for Jews, an angry Hitler said it was crazy propaganda of the same type put out about Germany during World War I. These statements, said Weber, were consistent with views Hitler expressed on other occasions and were inconsistent with an extermination plan. (23 5858 to 5860)
In 1942, there was a large outbreak of typhus in Birkenau which resulted in the deaths of many inmates. Himmler was very concerned and issued an emphatic order that the camp commandants were to take strenuous measures to reduce the death rate and to improve the nutrition of the prisoners. At all costs, Himmler directed, the death rate of the prisoners had to be reduced. This document was published in the official Nuremberg document series, the Red series, and was accepted as a reliable document by historians. Correspondence between Himmler and Oswald Pohl, the head of the concentration camps, was very emphatic about the need to keep the prisoner death rate down. Richard Glücks, who was a very high SS official and inspector of the concentration camps, ordered on January 20, 1943 that every means be used to lower the death rate in the camps. This was Nuremberg document NO-1523 and was published in the NMT “Green Series.” (23-5863) In Weber’s opinion, these documents were inconsistent with the extermination story. (23-5860, 5861)
Weber pointed out that numerous historians who believed the extermination story simply ignored these documents. They never mentioned them and never talked about them. Other exterminationists who were more responsible, such as Hilberg, would mention the documents but would say that at the same time Himmler was trying to reduce the death rates in the camps, the German government was also trying to kill as many Jews as they could. This type of illogic, said Weber, was typical of the entire Holocaust story. (23-5862)
Another example of this illogic was the fact that German soldiers and SS were punished for mistreating prisoners at the same time there was supposed to be widespread brutality and even a mass programme to exterminate Jews. These inconsistencies were explained by Hilberg and others as simply being part of the irrationality of the Nazi regime. To Weber, this was an illogical conclusion and was characteristic of trying to make the evidence fit a preconceived thesis rather than deriving conclusions from the evidence. (23-5862)
Weber next showed photographs to the jury from the Walter Dürrfeld file (in the U.S. National Archives), which he had mentioned the previous day. The photographs were originally submitted in Dürrfeld’s trial before an American military court in occupied West Germany in 1947 and 1948, and in Weber’s opinion were not consistent with the Holocaust story. The photographs showed various aspects of life at Monowitz, including a panoramic view of the synthetic gasoline production works at Monowitz (which gave an idea of the tremendous extent of the industrial works); camp inmates in striped clothing from either Auschwitz or Birkenau working along side civilian workers; housing for the workers; the dining hall for workers, the medical centre at Monowitz showing a nurse and babies and another showing an inmate in striped clothing being X-rayed; a dental office; barracks for workers at Monowitz with two beds as well as more primitive barracks with bunk beds (which were probably used for forced labourers from the Ukraine or from Soviet areas); a Ukrainian choir during an entertainment evening at Monowitz; a greenhouse garden; and a Ukrainian forced labourer at a machining tool. (23-5864 to 5878; photographs filed as Exhibit 99 at 23-5878)
Monowitz was a very large industrial works which even today was run by the Polish government. It required an enormous amount of labour and used prisoners from nearby Auschwitz and Birkenau, including Jews. Inmates also lived at Monowitz. These people included forced labourers from the Soviet Union, especially Ukrainian workers. They did not wear the striped uniforms. In addition, there were German civilian workers and other civilian workers from throughout Europe who worked along side the concentration camp inmates. (23-5868 to 5870)
To Weber, the fact that camp inmates worked along side civilian workers was not consistent with the Holocaust claim that mass exterminations were being carried out in the utmost secrecy at Auschwitz and Birkenau. It would have been virtually impossible to have kept such an enormous extermination programme secret when inmates from both camps worked and mixed with civilian and other workers who moved freely in and out of Monowitz. (23-5872, 5873)
In Weber’s opinion, the photographs of the medical centre showed that quite a lot of care was taken at Monowitz to ensure the health and happiness of the workers, including the inmates. (23-5874, 5875)
Weber turned to page 10 of the booklet to continue his analysis:
It should be emphasised straight away that there is not a single document in existence which proves that the Germans intended to, or carried out, the deliberate murder of Jews…The documents which do survive, of course, make no mention at all of extermination, so that writers like Poliakov and Reitlinger again make the convenient assumption that such orders were generally “verbal.”
Weber testified that at the time Did Six Million Really Die? was written the view of those historians who believed the Holocaust story was that there was an extermination and it was ordered by Hitler verbally. Reitlinger, Poliakov and Hilberg had all speculated that the orders were verbal because there were no written orders. This view had now changed. Martin Broszat and Hans Mommsen, two prominent West German historians, as well as Raul Hilberg, now took the position that there might very well have been no order of any kind, written or verbal, and that the extermination programme came about spontaneously. (23-5882)
In this controversy, one of the most important pieces of evidence was Nuremberg document 3836-PS, the affidavit of April 1946 of former Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss. In this affidavit, Höss said that he was informed that there was an order to exterminate the Jews in the summer of 1941 and that he was told by Himmler to prepare Auschwitz as a major centre for extermination. He also said there were already exterminations being carried out in Treblinka, Belzec and a camp called Wolzek. This document, said Weber, was inconsistent with the Holocaust story as it was now presented. Firstly, there was no camp called Wolzek. Secondly, the leading exterminationists, Hilberg, Broszat and Mommsen, now claimed there was probably no order by Hitler to exterminate the Jews but even if there was, it wasn’t given until 1942. Höss claimed the date was in early 1941. Finally, Höss’s statement that Jews were already being exterminated in the summer of 1941 in Treblinka was not supported by any exterminationist historian.
The exterminationist historians, however, did not point out the implications of the changes in the Holocaust story when such changes occurred. In Weber’s opinion, they didn’t do so because it showed that documents previously relied upon as evidence, such as the Höss affidavit, were invalid. (23-5883, 5884)
The Höss affidavit was also invalid for the important reason that it had now been shown that Höss was tortured. One of the men who was involved in the torture of Höss, a British military officer, described the torture in a book called Legions of Death. (23-5885)
Weber returned to page 10 of the booklet:
The rest of the programme is supposed to have begun in March 1942, with the deportation and concentration of European Jews in the eastern camps of the Polish Government-General, such as the giant industrial complex at Auschwitz near Cracow. The fantastic and quite groundless assumption throughout is that transportation to the East, supervised by Eichmann’s department, actually meant immediate extermination in ovens on arrival.
According to Manvell and Frankl (Heinrich Himmler, London, 1965), the policy of genocide “seems to have been arrived at” after “secret discussions” between Hitler and Himmler (p. 118), though they fail to prove it. Reitlinger and Poliakov guess along similar “verbal” lines, adding that no one else was allowed to be present at these discussions, and no records were ever kept of them. This is the purest invention, for there is not a shred of evidence that even suggests such outlandish meetings took place. William Shirer, in his generally wild and irresponsible book The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, is similarly muted on the subject of documentary proof. He states weakly that Hitler’s supposed order for the murder of Jews “apparently was never committed to paper — at least no copy of it has yet been unearthed. It was probably given verbally to Göring, Himmler and Heydrich, who passed it down…” (p. 1148).
Weber testified that this passage described the general position taken by exterminationists at the time the booklet was written in 1974 or 1976. The exterminationists started with the assumption that the Jews were exterminated and since it could not have happened without orders, the orders must have been given. But since there was no evidence of orders being given, it had to be assumed that it somehow happened. These historians therefore concluded that secret meetings must have taken place. This debate had now splintered the Holocaust historians into the functionalists and the intentionalists. Weber believed William Shirer’s book was not a responsible book and that it was indeed replete with errors, representing a very primitive level of historical understanding of the period. It was based entirely upon a selective reading of the Nuremberg evidence and Shirer made no effort to incorporate evidence outside of the parameters of those trials. As stated by Harwood, Shirer provided no documentary proof there was a meeting or an order given by Hitler. (23-5885 to 5890)
A typical example of the kind of “proof” quoted in support of the extermination legend is given by Manvell and Frankl. They cite a memorandum of 31st July, 1941 sent by Göring to Heydrich, who headed the Reich Security Head Office and was Himmler’s deputy. Significantly, the memorandum begins: “Supplementing the task that was assigned to you on 24th January 1939, to solve the Jewish problem by means of emigration and evacuation in the best possible way according to present conditions…” The supplementary task assigned in the memorandum is a “total solution (Gesamtlösung) of the Jewish question within the area of German influence in Europe,” which the authors admit means concentration in the East, and it requests preparations for the “organisational, financial and material matters” involved. The memorandum then requests a future plan for the “desired final solution” (Endlösung), which clearly refers to the ideal and ultimate scheme of emigration and evacuation mentioned at the beginning of the directive. No mention whatever is made of murdering people, but Manvell and Frankl assure us that this is what the memorandum is really about.
Weber testified that the Göring memorandum was once widely quoted as evidence for the extermination programme. Manvell and Fraenkel, like other exterminationists, made the assumption that the document meant murder. This was no longer the case and today no serious historian believed it was evidence of an extermination programme. In fact, it tended to be evidence of the exact opposite. The reference to “final solution” of the Jewish question was specifically said to be emigration and evacuation or deportation. There was no mention in the document of killing. Weber believed it showed what the actual German policy was: emigration and deportation. It meant getting the Jews out of Europe. (23-5892)
In the CIA report The Holocaust Revisited the authors assumed there was an extermination programme based upon secondary literature. These assumptions were not consistent with the aerial photographs of Auschwitz themselves. This process of assumption was characteristic of the exterminationists, said Weber. They started out with the assumption that there was a vast extermination programme and then tried to make the evidence fit this notion. This led to a whole range of confusion, and as the Holocaust story changed, more and more contradictions arose. (23- 5893, 5894)
Weber turned to page 11 of the booklet:
The final details of the plan to exterminate Jews were supposed to have been made at a conference at Gross Wannsee in Berlin on 20th January, 1942, presided over by Heydrich (Poliakov, Das Dritte Reich und die Juden, p. 120 ff; Reitlinger, The Final Solution, p. 95 ff). Officials of all German Ministries were present, and Müller and Eichmann represented Gestapo Head Office. Reitlinger and Manvell and Frankl consider the minutes of this conference to be their trump card in proving the existence of a genocide plan, but the truth is that no such plan was even mentioned, and what is more, they freely admit this. Manvell and Frankl explain it away rather lamely by saying that “The minutes are shrouded in the form of officialdom that cloaks the real significance of the words and terminology that are used” (The Incomparable Crime, London, 1967, p. 46), which really means that they intend to interpret them in their own way. What Heydrich actually said was that, as in the memorandum quoted above, he had been commissioned by Göring to arrange a solution to the Jewish problem. He reviewed the history of Jewish emigration, stated that the war had rendered the Madagascar project impractical, and continued: “The emigration programme has been replaced now by the evacuation of Jews to the east as a further possible solution, in accordance with the previous authorisation of the Führer.” Here, he explained, their labour was to be utilised. All this is supposed to be deeply sinister, and pregnant with the hidden meaning that the Jews were to be exterminated, though Prof. Paul Rassinier, a Frenchman interned at Buchenwald who has done sterling work in refuting the myth of the Six Million, explains that it means precisely what it says, i.e. the concentration of the Jews for labour in the immense eastern ghetto of the Polish Government-General. “There they were to wait until the end of the war, for the re-opening of international discussions which would decide their future. This decision was finally reached at the interministerial Berlin-Wannsee conference…” (Rassinier, Le Véritable Proces Eichmann, p. 20). Manvell and Frankl, however, remain undaunted by the complete lack of reference to extermination. At the Wannsee conference, they write, “Direct references to killing were avoided, Heydrich favouring the term “Arbeitseinsatz im Osten” (labour assignment in the East)” (Heinrich Himmler, p. 209). Why we should not accept labour assignment in the East to mean labour assignment in the East is not explained.
According to Reitlinger and others, innumerable directives actually specifying extermination then passed between Himmler, Heydrich, Eichmann and commandant Höss in the subsequent months of 1942, but of course, “none have survived”.
Weber testified that what Harwood wrote about the Wannsee Conference protocol was essentially correct. The Wannsee Conference was called to co-ordinate among a range of German agencies the policy of deportation of the Jews. The protocol of the conference made no reference to any extermination programme, but stated that the Jews were to be sent to the east for labour. It also made reference to their later liberation and new beginnings. Exterminationists claimed that this conference was really about extermination. Increasingly, however, historians such as Hilberg, Mommsen and Broszat now said that the conference was not about extermination. (23-5895, 5896)
The complete lack of documentary evidence to support the existence of an extermination plan has led to the habit of re-interpreting the documents that do survive. For example, it is held that a document concerning deportation is not about deportation at all, but a cunning way of talking about extermination. Manvell and Frankl state that ‘various terms were used to camouflage genocide. These included “Aussiedlung” (desettlement) and “Abbeförderung” (removal) (ibid., p. 265).Thus, as we have seen already, words are no longer assumed to mean what they say if they prove too inconvenient. This kind of thing is taken to the most incredible extremes, such as their interpretation of Heydrich’s directive for labour assignment in the East. Another example is a reference to Himmler’s order for sending deportees to the East, “that is, having them killed” (ibid., p. 251). Reitlinger, equally at a loss for evidence, does exactly the same, declaring that from the “circumlocutionary” words of the Wannsee conference it is obvious that “the slow murder of an entire race was intended” (ibid., p. 98).
Weber agreed that what was said in this passage was correct. Historians like Christopher Browning were wrong in assuming that whenever there was a reference to such words as “deportation” those words meant something else. In Weber’s opinion, any historical document had to be evaluated not only in terms of itself but also in terms of many other pieces of evidence and within an overall context. To assume that the Wannsee Conference protocol was about extermination was an example of ripping a document out of its context and falsely interpreting it. Historians like Manvell and Fraenkel and Lucy Dawidowicz simply told their readers what such words as “removal” were supposed to mean. It was an arbitrary definition because there was no code book available which established these meanings. Again, pointed out Weber, these historians argued backwards. They argued from an assumption and tried to make the evidence fit the assumption, the opposite of the way historians should operate. (23-5897, 5898) Raul Hilberg had in fact stated that it was the critique of the revisionists that forced the exterminationists to straighten out their story and that the exterminationists should be thankful. (23 5900)
A review of the documentary situation is important, because it reveals the edifice of guesswork and baseless assumptions upon which the extermination legend is built. The Germans had an extraordinary propensity for recording everything on paper in the most careful detail, yet among the thousands of captured documents of the S.D. and Gestapo, the records of the Reich Security Head Office, the files of Himmler’s headquarters and Hitler’s own war directives there is not a single order for the extermination of Jews or anyone else.
Weber testified that although the first sentence was a bit exaggerated, he agreed in essence with this passage. Weber agreed with Harwood’s statement regarding the propensity of the Germans to keep records, pointing out that the volume of German records was staggering. To this day, not all of the German records had been released by the Allies. Many were still kept secret, particularly in Communist countries such as Poland, the Soviet Union and East Germany. An example was the large quantity of German documents kept by the East German government in archives in Potsdam which were not freely available to researchers. (23-5901)
It will be seen later that this has, in fact, been admitted by the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation at Tel-Aviv. Attempts to find “veiled allusions” to genocide in speeches like that of Himmler’s to his SS Obergruppenführers at Posen in 1943 are likewise quite hopeless. Nuremberg statements extracted after the war, invariably under duress, are examined in the following chapter.
Weber testified that there was such a centre at Tel Aviv, but that the statement regarding it was not quite accurate. The head of the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation said there was no written order by Hitler for the extermination of the Jews; he did not made a statement as sweeping as Harwood had indicated in the booklet. (23-5902)
Weber had read Himmler’s Posen speech and listened to parts of it on recording. The speech was considered by historians such as Browning and Dawidowicz to be one of the most important pieces of evidence for a German extermination programme. Himmler gave several very similar speeches within the same time period. In Weber’s opinion, Himmler made clear in one of these speeches, given to Naval officers in Weimar on December 16, 1943, what he really meant by the so called incriminating passage in the Posen speech. Himmler said that he had a policy that when Jews were shot in the Soviet East for partisan or other illegal activities or Soviet commissars, that he also, as a rule, had the wives and children of those Jews shot as well. In Weber’s opinion, this was what Himmler was referring to in the Posen speech. He was not referring to an overall extermination programme. Weber believed the speech, given in exaggerated language, was not evidence of an alleged extermination programme. (23-5902, 5903)
It was important to understand, when talking about what happened to the Jews in the occupied Soviet territory that the most savage war in modern history was being conducted there. It was a war for the life and death of both Germany and the Soviet Union; a ruthless war with no pity on either side. It was misleading, said Weber, to talk about the fate of the Jews out of this context. While the Jews suffered a bad fate in the occupied Soviet territory, so did the Russians and the Ukrainians. German prisoners taken by the Soviets were very harshly treated, in part because the Soviet Union was not a member of the International Red Cross and did not abide by any of the International Red Cross agreements. Only a small percentage of Germans taken prisoner by the Soviets were returned to Germany; of about 130,000 taken prisoner only 5,000 to 10,000 came back alive. About 2 million German and Allied soldiers died on the Eastern Front. The Soviets claimed that 20 million of their own citizens died during the war, although Weber believed this figure might be exaggerated. This gave an idea of the immensity of the losses suffered by everyone in the struggle in the east. (23-5904, 5905)
The story of the Six Million was given judicial authority at the Nuremberg Trials of German leaders between 1945 and 1949, proceedings which proved to be the most disgraceful legal farce in history. For a far more detailed study of the iniquities of these trials, which as Field Marshal Montgomery said, made it a crime to lose a war, the reader is referred to the works cited below, and particularly to the outstanding book Advance to Barbarism (Nelson, 1953), by the distinguished English jurist, F.J.P. Veale.
It was Weber’s opinion that this passage from the booklet contained a very important point. Article 21 of the Nuremberg Charter specified that every official document of the Allied (prosecution) governments had to be accepted as valid evidence. At Nuremberg, this meant that the so-called official reports by the Soviet Union about Auschwitz and Majdanek and even Katyn had to be accepted as valid evidence. Today, it was known these reports were not legitimate. No serious Holocaust historian, for example, believed that 4 million people were put to death at Auschwitz as claimed by the Soviets at Nuremberg. Many of the lurid stories put out by the Soviets at the trial were no longer accepted. The Soviet accusation that the Germans killed thousands of Polish officers at Katyn was no longer believed today. Even the American government now conceded that the Polish officers were killed by the Soviet secret police. (23- 5905, 5906)
F. J. P. Veale’s book Advance to Barbarism cited by Harwood, was an indictment of the character of the Nuremberg trials. Many distinguished Americans and Europeans, such as Senator Robert Taft, condemned the trials as victors’ justice in which the people who won the war were the prosecutors, the judges and the alleged victims, all at the same time. The Nuremberg trials invented charges for the occasion. Taft condemned the trails as a violation of the most basic principles of American justice and internationally accepted standards of justice. (23-5907)
From the very outset, the Nuremberg Trials proceeded on the basis of gross statistical errors. In his speech of indictment on November 20th, 1945, Mr. Sidney Alderman declared that there had been 9,600,000 Jews living in German occupied Europe. Our earlier study has shown this figure to be wildly inaccurate … Should anyone be misled into believing that the extermination of the Jews was “proved” at Nuremberg by “evidence”, he should consider the nature of the Trials themselves, based as they were on a total disregard of sound legal principles of any kind. The accusers acted as prosecutors, judges and executioners; “guilt” was assumed from the outset. (Among the judges, of course, were the Russians, whose numberless crimes included the massacre of 15,000 Polish officers, a proportion of whose bodies were discovered by the Germans at Katyn Forest, near Smolensk. The Soviet Prosecutor attempted to blame this slaughter on the German defendants). At Nuremberg, ex post facto legislation was created, whereby men were tried for “crimes” which were only declared crimes after they had been allegedly committed. Hitherto it had been the most basic legal principle that a person could only be convicted for infringing a law that was in force at the time of the infringement. “Nulla Poena Sine Lege.”
The exterminationists claimed there were 9 million Jews in Europe under German control during the war, said Weber, of whom 6 million were killed and 3 million survived. Weber believed that it was very hard to determine specific figures and that the exercise could only be speculative. In his book The Final Solution, Gerald Reitlinger conceded that it was very difficult to determine with much accuracy not only how many Jews died during the war but even how many Jews were in given areas during the war. In this regard, Reitlinger was much more frank than Hilberg. Reitlinger placed Jewish losses during the war at about 4.2 million. (23-5910)
With respect to Katyn, Weber pointed out that the Soviet prosecutor had gone so far as to call Katyn one of the worst crimes of the Second World War. (23-5911)
The Rules of Evidence, developed by British jurisprudence over the centuries in order to arrive at the truth of a charge with as much certainty as possible, were entirely disregarded at Nuremberg. It was decreed that “the Tribunal should not be bound by technical rules of evidence” but could admit “any evidence which it deemed to have probative value”, that is, would support a conviction. In practise, this meant the admittance of hearsay evidence and documents, which in a normal judicial trial are always rejected as untrustworthy … Most incredible of all, perhaps, was the fact that defence lawyers at Nuremberg were not permitted to cross examine prosecution witnesses … The real background of the Nuremberg Trials was exposed by the American judge, Justice Wenersturm, President of one of Tribunals. He was so disgusted by the proceedings that he resigned his appointment and flew home to America, leaving behind a statement to the Chicago Tribune which enumerated point by point his objections to the Trials (cf. Mark Lautern, Das Letzte Wort über Nürnberg, p. 56). Points 3 -8 are as follows: 3. The members of the department of the Public Prosecutor, instead of trying to formulate and reach a new guiding legal principle, were moved only by personal ambition and revenge. 4. The prosecution did its utmost in every way possible to prevent the defence preparing its case and to make it impossible for it to furnish evidence. 5. The prosecution, led by General Taylor, did everything in its power to prevent the unanimous decision of the Military Court being carried out i.e. to ask Washington to furnish and make available to the court further documentary evidence in the possession of the American Government. 6. Ninety per cent of the Nuremberg Court consisted of biased persons who, either on political or racial grounds, furthered the prosecution’s case. 7. The prosecution obviously knew how to fill all the administrative posts of the Military Court with “Americans” whose naturalisation certificates were very new indeed, and who, whether in the administrative service or by their translations etc., created an atmosphere hostile to the accused persons. 8. The real aim of the Nuremberg Trials was to show the Germans the crimes of their Führer, and this aim was at the same time the pretext on which the trials were ordered … Had I known seven months earlier what was happening at Nuremberg, I would never have gone there.
Concerning Point 6, that ninety per cent of the Nuremberg Court consisted of people biased on racial or political grounds, this was a fact confirmed by others present. According to Earl Carrol, an American lawyer, sixty per cent of the staff of the Public Prosecutor’s Office were German Jews who had left Germany after the promulgation of Hitler’s Race Laws. He observed that not even ten per cent of the Americans employed at the Nuremberg courts were actually Americans by birth. The chief of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, who worked behind General Taylor, was Robert M. Kempner, a German-Jewish emigrant.
Rules of evidence were not entirely disregarded at Nuremberg, said Weber, but important rules of evidence were. Evidence was admitted that would not often be normally admissible in American or British courts. There was a right of appeal at Nuremberg to the Tribunal itself, but not to any body above the Tribunal. Weber did not know of any case where defence counsel could not cross-examine; however, there were affidavits filed at Nuremberg without the calling of the witness to support it. (23-5912, 5913)
What Harwood wrote about Judge Wennerstrum was essentially accurate, said Weber. Wennerstrum, who was a member of the State Supreme Court from Iowa, was an American judge at one of the secondary Nuremberg trials conducted by the Americans. He was disgusted by what he saw there according to his own statement which was published in the Chicago Tribune. Weber had consulted the Chicago Tribune and confirmed that the statements quoted by Harwood were in fact correct. Wennerstrum felt that the people at Nuremberg were biased on racial or political grounds and Weber shared that belief. Interrogators and interpreters were very often Jewish refugees from Germany and from Central Europe who had taken refuge in the United States before and during the war. Judge Wennerstrum was alarmed and unhappy by the fact that these people, who he felt were biased, were used so extensively by the Americans in prosecuting the Germans at Nuremberg. Weber believed that the figure of 60 percent of the staff being Jewish as stated by Harwood was approximately correct. (23-5915, 5916)
It was known that some of the evidence produced at Nuremberg was invalid evidence. Rudolf Höss, who was a primary witness at Nuremberg, was tortured; the defendant Streicher had been severely beaten and Oswald Pohl had also been tortured. (23-5919)
Weber returned to page 12 of the booklet:
The methods of intimidation described were repeated during trials at Frankfurt am-Mein and at Dachau, and large numbers of Germans were convicted for atrocities on the basis of their admissions. The American Judge Edward L. van Roden, one of the three members of the Simpson Army Commission which was subsequently appointed to investigate the methods of justice at the Dachau trials, revealed the methods by which these admissions were secured in the Washington Daily News, January 9th, 1949. His account also appeared in the British newspaper, the Sunday Pictorial, January 23rd, 1949. The methods he described were: “Posturing as priests to hear confessions and give absolution; torture with burning matches driven under the prisoners finger-nails; knocking out of teeth and breaking jaws; solitary confinement and near starvation rations.” Van Roden explained: “The statements which were admitted as evidence were obtained from men who had first been kept in solitary confinement for three, four and five months …The investigators would put a black hood over the accused’s head and then punch him in the face with brass knuckles, kick him and beat him with rubber hoses … All but two of the Germans, in the 139 cases we investigated, had been kicked in the testicles beyond repair. This was standard operating procedure with our American investigators.”
The “American” investigators responsible (and who later functioned as the prosecution in the trials) were: Lt.-Col. Burton F. Ellis (chief of the War Crimes Committee) and his assistants, Capt. Raphael Shumacker, Lt. Robert E. Byrne, Lt. William R. Perl, Mr. Morris Ellowitz, Mr. Harry Thon, and Mr. Kirschbaum. The legal adviser of the court was Col. A. H. Rosenfeld. The reader will immediately appreciate from their names that the majority of these people were “biased on racial grounds” in the words of Justice Wenersturm — that is, were Jewish, and therefore should never have been involved in any such investigation.
Despite the fact that “confessions” pertaining to the extermination of the Jews were extracted under these conditions, Nuremberg statements are still regarded as conclusive evidence for the Six Million by writers like Reitlinger and others, and the illusion is maintained that the Trials were both impartial and impeccably fair.
Weber was familiar with the Simpson Army Commission and indicated that ultimately its findings were confirmed. The statements of van Roden quoted by Harwood had been reported in the American press at the time. Van Roden had also written a lengthy article in The Progressive magazine on his own initiative. (23-5921, 5922)
In Weber’s opinion, it was obvious that some of the assistants and legal advisors in these investigations were Jewish. It lent substance to the statement by Justice Wennerstrum that the staffs were biased on racial grounds, that is, they were Jewish.
Weber believed that very few historians today would call the Nuremberg trials impeccably fair. Harwood was drawing a conclusion on Nuremberg based on the Malmédy trials; nevertheless, Weber felt it was not incorrect to say that what happened at Malmédy might be an indication of how Allied justice was imposed in Germany after the war. The United States conducted the Malmédy trials and most of the Nuremberg trials. (23-5924, 5925)
Weber turned to page 13 of the booklet:
These allegations have since been elaborated; it is now claimed that the murder of Soviet Jews by the Einsatzgruppen constituted Phase One in the plan to exterminate the Jews, Phase Two being the transportation of European Jews to Poland. Reitlinger admits that the original term “final solution” referred to emigration and had nothing to do with the liquidation of Jews, but he then claims that an extermination policy began at the time of the invasion of Russia in 1941. He considers Hitler’s order of July 1941 for the liquidation of the Communist commissars, and he concludes that this was accompanied by a verbal order from Hitler for the Einsatzgruppen to liquidate all Soviet Jews (Die Endlösung, p. 91). If this assumption is based on anything at all, it is probably the worthless Wisliceny statement, which alleges that the Einsatzgruppen were soon receiving orders to extend their task of crushing Communists and partisans to a “general massacre” of Russian Jews.
It is very significant that, once again, it is a “verbal order” for exterminating Jews that is supposed to have accompanied Hitler’s genuine, written order — yet another nebulous and unprovable assumption on the part of Reitlinger. An earlier order from Hitler, dated March 1941 and signed by Field Marshal Keitel, makes it quite clear what the real tasks of the future Einsatzgruppen would be. It states that in the Russian campaign, the Reichsführer S.S. (Himmler) is to be entrusted with “tasks for the preparation of the political administration, tasks which result from the struggle which has to be carried out between two opposing political systems” (Manvell and Frankl, ibid., p. 115). This plainly refers to eliminating Communism, especially the political commissars whose specific task was Communist indoctrination.
In Weber’s opinion, Harwood was correct in saying that it was claimed that the murder of Soviet Jews by the Einsatzgruppen constituted phase one in a plan to exterminate the Jews, phase two being the transportation of Jews to Poland. This was the view of Hilberg in The Destruction of the European Jews. (23-5934)
Harwood also correctly put forward Reitlinger’s position. Weber himself did not agree that Reitlinger’s conclusions were based on the Wisliceny statement, but indicated that this was the opinion of Harwood. Dieter Wisliceny, who had been an assistant to Eichmann, stated in the affidavit that 5 or 6 million Jews were killed according to Eichmann. The affidavit was very similar to Hoettl’s affidavit and was introduced at Nuremberg as a prosecution exhibit. (23-5929, 5930 to 5935)
The Einsatzgruppen trial, said Weber, was one of the subsidiary Nuremberg trials conducted solely by the Americans. The personnel of the Einsatzgruppen were drawn from the Waffen SS, from the Reich Security Main Office (which was called the Gestapo) and the SD, which was also under the Reich Security Main Office. Their task was to ensure immediate security and order in territory captured by the Germans from the Soviets and before the establishment of German civil administration. In addition, they gathered extensive intelligence and made reports about conditions in the occupied Soviet areas. They were involved with Soviet commissars and anti-partisan activity although this was not their main activity. Weber explained that any Soviet military unit of any size had a political commissar. They were committed, fanatical Communists and had the power to give orders along with regular army units. (23-5931 to 5933)
The March 1941 order from Hitler to Keitel, said Weber, did not really deal with the Einsatzgruppen. While it did talk about the Einsatzgruppen, it was a very vague order that dealt with political administration and security. There were other orders which were much more explicit about the specific tasks of the Einsatzgruppen that the booklet did not refer to. From the revisionist point of view, Weber thought Did Six Million Really Die? was outdated and that a great deal more evidence was now available which made the case for revisionism much stronger. (23- 5936 to 5938)
The most revealing trial in the “Einsatzgruppen Case” at Nuremberg was that of S.S. General Otto Ohlendorf, the chief of the S.D. who commanded Einsatzgruppe D in the Ukraine, attached to Field Marshal von Manstein’s Eleventh Army. During the last phase of the war he was employed as a foreign trade expert in the Ministry of Economics. Ohlendorf was one of those subjected to the torture described earlier, and in his affidavit of November 5th, 1945 he was “persuaded” to confess that 90,000 Jews had been killed under his command alone. Ohlendorf did not come to trial until 1948, long after the main Nuremberg Trial, and by that time he was insisting that his earlier statement had been extracted from him under torture. In his main speech before the Tribunal, Ohlendorf took the opportunity to denounce Philip Auerbach, the Jewish attorney-general of the Bavarian State Office for Restitution, who at that time was claiming compensation for “eleven million Jews” who had suffered in German concentration camps. Ohlendorf dismissed this ridiculous claim, stating that “not the minutest part” of the people for whom Auerbach was demanding compensation had even seen a concentration camp. Ohlendorf lived long enough to see Auerbach convicted for embezzlement and fraud (forging documents purporting to show huge payments of compensation to non-existent people) before his own execution finally took place in 1951.
Weber testified that he had studied the trial of Ohlendorf a great deal but had seen no evidence that Ohlendorf was tortured. Ohlendorf signed an affidavit to co operate with the Allies and was quite willing to do so until he himself was put on trial. Ohlendorf later repudiated parts of his affidavit, saying there was no programme to exterminate the Jews by his group. He maintained that the Jews were killed only for security reasons and that the figure of 90,000 Jews allegedly killed under his command was an exaggeration. (23-5938, 5939)
Ohlendorf was quite bitter about the enormous double standard which he felt was being applied to the Germans. In a final plea to the court, he contrasted his operations in the east with the mass fire bombings of German cities by the Allies and with the dropping of the atomic bombs on Japanese cities. He said that whatever he did was certainly no worse than those actions. (23- 5947)
Weber testified that Auerbach, who was Jewish and an important official in the Bavarian state, committed suicide after it was discovered that he had been involved in illegal activities to profit from his position. Weber’s source for this information was Hilberg. (23-5940, 6113)
Weber turned to page 14 of the booklet:
The Soviet charge that the Action Groups had wantonly exterminated a million Jews during their operations has been shown subsequently to be a massive falsification. In fact, there had never been the slightest statistical basis for the figure…
The real number of casualties for which the Action Groups were responsible has since been revealed in the scholarly work Manstein, his Campaigns and his Trial (London, 1951), by the able English lawyer R. T. Paget. Ohlendorf had been under Manstein’s nominal command. Paget’s conclusion is that the Nuremberg Court, in accepting the figures of the Soviet prosecution, exaggerated the number of casualties by more than 1000 per cent and that they distorted even more the situations in which these casualties were inflicted. (These horrific distortions are the subject of six pages of William Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, pp. 1140-46). Here, then, is the legendary 6 million in miniature; not one million deaths, but one hundred thousand.
With respect to this passage in Did Six Million Really Die?, Weber testified that the first sentence was an opinion of Harwood which he himself would not have put so strongly. Weber did not agree that there was no statistical basis for the Einsatzgruppen figure; there were the Einsatzgruppen reports themselves, although they were not accurate. (23-5947, 5948)
Weber was familiar with the book Manstein: His Campaigns and His Trial by R.T. Paget, published in 1951. Manstein was accused of knowing about and co-operating with the Einsatzgruppen. Paget’s investigation of one incident in the Crimea, where it was claimed that 10,000 Jews were executed by Ohlendorf’s unit in one day, showed that no more than 300 persons had been shot, of whom a large percentage were not Jews. Paget concluded that the Einsatzgruppen reports were exaggerated in general by at least ten times. In Weber’s opinion, the 6 million figure was exaggerated in much the same way that the Einsatzgruppen figures were exaggerated. (23-5950 to 5952)
The Manstein trial was held a few years after the Nuremberg proceedings and the whole atmosphere was much fairer than it was during the Nuremberg trials which were held at a time when the passions and hatreds of the war were much more alive. Quite a lot of sympathy developed in England for Manstein. The case attracted a great deal of attention and Winston Churchill himself contributed to Manstein’s defence fund. (23-5952)
Weber was familiar also with the trial of Oswald Pohl. This was a very important trial having to do with Jewish policy during the war. Pohl was responsible for the administration of the concentration camps and was directly responsible to Himmler. Pohl denied the existence of an extermination programme. In his trial, Pohl was depicted as a horrible man but statements made by those who knew him personally portrayed a different picture of him as a man and parent. Nevertheless, Weber disagreed with Harwood’s statement that the Pohl trial was “nothing less than the deliberate defamation of a man’s character in order to support the propaganda legend of genocide against the Jews in the concentration camps he administered.” Weber felt the statement was hyperbole and too categorical. The main issue at the Nuremberg proceedings, in Weber’s opinion, was German responsibility for the war, not the fate of the Jews. The high German officials were put on trial in an effort by the Allies to discredit them and the entire regime they represented. The Jewish issue was not as overwhelming an issue at the Nuremberg trials as people today thought. (23-5954 to 5963)
Weber turned to page 15 of the booklet:
Spurious testimony at Nuremberg which included extravagant statements in support of the myth of the Six Million was invariably given by former German officers because of pressure, either severe torture as in the cases cited previously, or the assurance of leniency for themselves if they supplied the required statements. An example of the latter was the testimony of S.S. General Erich von dem Bach Zelewski. He was threatened with execution himself because of his suppression of the revolt by Polish partisans at Warsaw in August 1944, which he carried out with his S.S. brigade of White Russians. He was therefore prepared to be “co-operative”. The evidence of Bach-Zelewski constituted the basis of the testimony against the Reichsführer of the S.S. Heinrich Himmler at the main Nuremberg Trial (Trial of the Major War Criminals, Vol. IV, pp, 29, 36). In March 1941, on the eve of the invasion of Russia, Himmler invited the Higher S.S. Leaders to his Castle at Wewelsburg for a conference, including Bach-Zelewski who was an expert on partisan warfare. In his Nuremberg evidence, he depicted Himmler speaking in grandiose terms at this conference about the liquidation of peoples in Eastern Europe, but Göring, in the courtroom, denounced Bach-Zelewski to his face for the falsity of this testimony. An especially outrageous allegation concerned a supposed declaration by Himmler that one of the aims of the Russian campaign was to “decimate the Slav population by thirty millions.” What Himmler really said is given by his Chief of Staff, Wolff — that war in Russia was certain to result in millions of dead (Manvell and Frankl, ibid. p. 117)…
Much is made of Bach-Zelewski’s evidence in all the books on Himmler, especially Willi Frischauer’s Himmler: Evil Genius of the Third Reich (London, 1953, p. 148 ff). However, in April 1959, Bach- Zelewski publicly repudiated his Nuremberg testimony before a West German court. He admitted that his earlier statements had not the slightest foundation in fact, and that he had made them for the sake of expediency and his own survival. The German court, after careful deliberation, accepted his retraction…
The truth concerning Himmler is provided ironically by an anti-Nazi — Felix Kersten, his physician and masseur. Because Kersten was opposed to the regime, he tends to support the legend that the internment of Jews meant their extermination. But from his close personal knowledge of Himmler he cannot help but tell the truth concerning him, and in his Memoirs 1940-1945 (London, 1956, p. 119 ff.) he is emphatic in stating that Heinrich Himmler did not advocate liquidating the Jews but favoured their emigration overseas. Neither does Kersten implicate Hitler. However, the credibility of his anti-Nazi narrative is completely shattered when, in search of an alternative villain, he declares that Dr. Goebbels was the real advocate of “extermination”. This nonsensical allegation is amply disproved by the fact that Goebbels was still concerned with the Madagascar project even after it had been temporarily shelved by the German Foreign Office, as we showed earlier.
So much for false evidence at Nuremberg. Reference has also been made to the thousands of fraudulent “written affidavits” which were accepted by the Nuremberg Court without any attempt to ascertain the authenticity of their contents or even their authorship. These hearsay documents, often of the most bizarre kind, were introduced as “evidence” so long as they bore the required signature. A typical prosecution affidavit contested by the defence in the Concentration Camp Trial of 1947 was that of Alois Hoellriegel, a member of the camp personnel at Mauthausen in Austria. This affidavit, which the defence proved was fabricated during Hoellriegel’s torture, had already been used to secure the conviction of S.S. General Ernst Kaltenbrunner in 1946. It claimed that a mass gassing operation had taken place at Mauthausen and that Hoellriegel had witnessed Kaltenbrunner ( the highest S.S. Leader in the Reich excepting Himmler) actually taking part in it.
By the time of the Concentration Camp Trial (Pohl’s trial) a year later, it had become impossible to sustain this piece of nonsense when it was produced in court again. The defence not only demonstrated that the affidavit was falsified, but showed that all deaths at Mauthausen were systematically checked by the local police authorities. They were also entered on a camp register, and particular embarrassment was caused to the prosecution when the Mauthausen register, one of the few that survived, was produced in evidence. The defence also obtained numerous affidavits from former inmates of Mauthausen (a prison camp chiefly for criminals) testifying to humane and orderly conditions there.
At the Nuremberg trials, it was known that German witnesses were pressured and oftentimes they were threatened with the deportation of their families to the Soviets or a withdrawal of rations for both themselves and their families unless they co operated. Weber did not have concrete evidence, but believed that it was implicit in the behavior of some witnesses that they gave evidence in exchange for assurances of leniency. (23-5963, 5964)
Weber indicated that Bach-Zelewski was the head of the anti-partisan units of the SS which operated in Russia. At Nuremberg, he was very helpful to the prosecution and the defendants were very unhappy with the things he said. Bach-Zelewski testified to the effect that one of the aims of the Russian campaign was to decimate the Slav population by 30 million. This was completely false, said Weber. There was no evidence from anyone other than Bach-Zelewski for this allegation and it was not consistent with what was known of Himmler’s policy. Weber himself, however, did not agree with Harwood’s conclusion that Bach-Zelewski’s evidence constituted the basis of the testimony against Himmler at Nuremberg. After Bach-Zelewski came down from the witness stand, Göring called him a schwinehund. (23-5964 to 5968)
Harwood’s source for the statement that Bach-Zelewski publicly repudiated his Nuremberg testimony in 1959 was a booklet by David Hoggan entitled The Myth of the Six Million. Weber had searched very hard for evidence of this statement but had been unable to find any. Bach-Zelewski’s testimony was still taken at face value and continued to be widely quoted. (23- 5969 to 5971)
In Weber’s opinion, what Harwood wrote about Felix Kersten, a physician and masseur who became close to Himmler during the war, was true. Kersten’s memoirs were useful and interesting but had to be evaluated on the basis of other evidence. Weber also agreed with Harwood’s conclusions regarding Kersten’s writings with respect to Goebbels. Goebbels had no authority to order or carry out or be involved in any extermination programme even if he had wanted to, said Weber. He was the propaganda minister and the Gauleiter for Berlin, but he had no authority over Jews. (23-5972 to 5974)
Weber testified that affidavits were accepted as evidence at Nuremberg without their authors being called as witnesses. It was objected to on some occasions, but the judges overruled the objections. Hearsay documents were also introduced into evidence. (23-5980, 5981)
What was written by Harwood about Alois Hoellriegel was essentially accurate, said Weber. His affidavit, which had been an important piece of evidence used in indicting Kaltenbrunner, was subsequently found to be false. No historian today believed that Kaltenbrunner took part in a gassing at Mauthausen. In fact, the story that people were even gassed at Mauthausen was crumbling. There were documents which showed there were no gassings whatsoever at Mauthausen and the exterminationists no longer considered the camp an extermination centre. The emphasis had now shifted to other camps. (23-5981)
In 1960, Martin Broszat, the head of the Institute for Contemporary History at Munich, publicly stated that there were no gassings in concentration camps inside Germany proper, including Dachau and Buchenwald. This was startling, said Weber, because it had been claimed at Nuremberg that people were gassed at camps in Germany proper. Broszat gave no reason for making this claim but it was accepted because he was a very prominent historian and generally considered reputable. Recently, however, a document signed by an officer named Müller had come to light through his assistant, a Mr. Emil Lachout. This document was from the Military Police in Vienna, which was under the authority of the Allied occupation forces after the war. The document showed that the Allied governments carried out investigations of the gassing allegations at camps in Germany proper and in Austria, including Dachau, Buchenwald and Mauthausen, and found that there were no gassings at any of these camps. The “evidence” for such gassings had been based on two things: firstly, the false statements of former inmates, made to ingratiate themselves with the Allies; and secondly, the torture of former SS guards. The document went on to say that anyone who persisted in making claims about gassings at these camps was to be indicted, after warning, for making false statements. In Weber’s opinion, this document lent substance to the statements by other historians that there were no gassings at the camps in Germany proper. When Lachout made the document public he was bitterly denounced by certain groups in Vienna for releasing it, although the document itself had not been called into question. (23-5983 to 5985)
Weber noted that it was conceded that gassings never took place in concentration camps for which the most information was available (such as the camps’ death registers) even though gassing claims had been made at Nuremberg regarding these same camps. The Auschwitz death registers were not available,2 unlike those for Mauthausen and Buchenwald, which were partially available. (23-5985)
Weber turned to page 16 of the booklet:
It should be emphasised that throughout the Nuremberg proceedings, the German leaders on trial never believed for a moment the allegations of the Allied prosecution. Hermann Göring, who was exposed to the full brunt of the Nuremberg atrocity propaganda, failed to be convinced by it. Hans Fritzsche, on trial as the highest functionary of Goebbels’ Ministry, relates that Göring, even after hearing the Ohlendorf affidavit on the Einsatzgruppen and the Höss testimony on Auschwitz, remained convinced that the extermination of Jews was entirely propaganda fiction (The Sword in the Scales, London, 1953, p. 145). At one point during the trial, Göring declared rather cogently that the first time he had heard of it “was right here in Nuremberg” (Shirer, ibid. p. 1147). The Jewish writers Poliakov, Reitlinger and Manvell and Frankl all attempt to implicate Göring in this supposed extermination, but Charles Bewley in his work Hermann Göring (Goettingen, 1956) shows that not the slightest evidence was found at Nuremberg to substantiate this charge.
Hans Fritzsche pondered on the whole question during the trials, and he concluded that there had certainly been no thorough investigation of these monstrous charges. Fritzsche, who was acquitted, was an associate of Goebbels and a skilled propagandist. He recognised that the alleged massacre of the Jews was the main point of the indictment against all defendants. Kaltenbrunner, who succeeded Heydrich as chief of the Reich Security Head Office and was the main defendant for the S.S. due to the death of Himmler, was no more convinced of the genocide charges than was Göring. He confided to Fritzsche that the prosecution was scoring apparent successes because of their technique of coercing witnesses and suppressing evidence, which was precisely the accusation of Judges Wenersturm and van Roden.
Weber testified that at the main Nuremberg trial, some of the most damning testimony presented for the extermination story was that of Rudolf Höss (now known to be obtained by torture) and the statement of Otto Ohlendorf (which he later repudiated and was now acknowledged by historians to be inaccurate). Another piece of damning evidence was the film Nazi Concentration Camps which the Allied governments had produced. Göring was openly skeptical about this film, said Weber, but he was very emphatic in stating in the trial that he had no knowledge whatsoever of any extermination programme and that if there had been such a programme he certainly would have known about it. (23-5986, 5987)
In his memoirs, The Sword in the Scales, Hans Fritzsche, who was a defendant at Nuremberg but was acquitted, related that he spoke privately to Hermann Göring during a recess in the trial and asked what the truth about the Jews was. Göring had replied, ‘I swear to you, there can’t be any extermination programme. If there was, I would have known about it. It can’t be true.’ Göring then went on to call into question the kind of evidence that had been presented at Nuremberg to substantiate the story. Weber agreed with Harwood that the exterminationists had tried to implicate Göring in the extermination. This was now changing, however, as the extermination story itself changed. Less and less was being said about Göring’s supposed involvement. (23-5987, 5991) A number of the defendants at Nuremberg, said Weber, were astounded by the evidence that was presented and some of them took the view that ‘Well, maybe it’s true, and I didn’t know about it.’ (23-5989)
There was relative reward and punishment for the way defendants responded at Nuremberg. Weber contrasted the cases of Albert Speer and Rudolf Hess. Speer was the head of the Armaments Ministry and was responsible for keeping Germany’s war machine going to the end. He was given a 20-year sentence and upon release wrote several best-selling books. He received royalties and was highly regarded because he denounced the Hitler regime while contending that he himself had done nothing wrong except participate in it. In contrast, Rudolf Hess, who was Hitler’s deputy and who risked his life for peace by flying to Britain in 1941, evading British spitfire airplanes in the process, was given a life sentence. Hess had nothing to do with the planning or operation of the war or certainly the atrocities committed during the war. But at Nuremberg, Hess had refused to plead that he was working for a bad regime and instead was absolutely defiant in his expressions of loyalty to Hitler and to National Socialism. (23-5989, 5988)
Fritzsche said that the alleged extermination of the Jews was the most damning part of the indictment made by the Allies against the Germans. He felt that although the charge that Germany started the war was important, the most incriminating thing was the charge that the Germans exterminated the Jews, or tried to. (23-5992)
The concentration camp at Auschwitz near Cracow in Poland has remained at the centre of the alleged extermination of millions of Jews. Later we shall see how, when it was discovered by honest observers in the British and American zones after the war that no “gas chambers” existed in the German camps such as Dachau and Bergen-Belsen, attention was shifted to the eastern camps, particularly Auschwitz. Ovens definitely existed here, it was claimed. Unfortunately, the eastern camps were in the Russian zone of occupation, so that no one could verify whether these allegations were true or not. The Russians refused to allow anyone to see Auschwitz until about ten years after the war, by which time they were able to alter its appearance and give some plausibility to the claim that millions of people had been exterminated there…
The truth about Auschwitz is that it was the largest and most important industrial concentration camp, producing all kinds of material for the war industry. The camp consisted of synthetic coal and rubber plants built by I. G. Farben Industrie, for whom the prisoners supplied labour. Auschwitz also comprised an agricultural research station, with laboratories, plant nurseries and facilities for stock breeding, as well as Krupps armament works…
It was nevertheless at this single camp that about half of the six million Jews were supposed to have been exterminated, indeed, some writers claim 4 or even 5 million. Four million was the sensational figure announced by the Soviet Government after the Communists had “investigated” the camp, at the same time as they were attempting to blame the Katyn massacre on the Germans…
However, no living, authentic eye-witness of these “gassings” has ever been produced and validated…
The exterminations at Auschwitz are alleged to have occurred between March 1942 and October 1944; the figure of half of six million, therefore, would mean the extermination and disposal of about 94,000 people per month for thirty two months — approximately 3,350 people every day, day and night, for over two and a half years. This kind of thing is so ludicrous that it scarcely needs refuting. And yet Reitlinger claims quite seriously that Auschwitz could dispose of no less than 6,000 people a day.
Although Reitlinger’s 6,000 a day would mean a total by October 1944 of over 5 million, all such estimates pale before the wild fantasies of Olga Lengyel in her book Five Chimneys (London, 1959). Claiming to be a former inmate of Auschwitz, she asserts that the camp cremated no less than “720 per hour, or 17,280 corpses per twenty-four hour shift.” She also alleges that, in addition, 8,000 people were burned every day in the “death-pits”, and that therefore “In round numbers, about 24,000 corpses were handled every day” (p. 80- 1). This, of course, would mean a yearly rate of over 8-1/2 million. Thus between March 1942 and October 1944 Auschwitz would finally have disposed of over 21 million people, six million more than the entire world Jewish population. Comment is superfluous.
Although several millions were supposed to have died at Auschwitz alone, Reitlinger has to admit that only 363,000 inmates were registered at the camp for the whole of the period between January 1940 and February 1945 (The S.S. Alibi of a Nation, p. 268 ff), and by no means all of them were Jews. It is frequently claimed that many prisoners were never registered, but no one has offered any proof of this. Even if there were as many unregistered as there were registered, it would mean only a total of 750,000 prisoners — hardly enough for the elimination of 3 or 4 million. Moreover, large numbers of the camp population were released or transported elsewhere during the war, and at the end 80,000 were evacuated westward in January 1945 before the Russian advance.
At Nuremberg, said Weber, it was alleged that 4 million people were killed at Auschwitz, a camp which was an extremely important part of the extermination story. In recent years, however, there had been more and more of a shift away from Auschwitz towards the camps of Treblinka, Sobibor, Belzec and Chelmno. No physical trace remained of these camps. Weber believed this shift was happening because, as more evidence came to light, it was harder and harder to sustain the extermination story as it related to Auschwitz and Majdanek. Some of the most dramatic pieces of such evidence were the aerial photographs of Auschwitz released by the CIA in 1979. (23-5994, 5995)
At Nuremberg, the Allies claimed gassings at Dachau, Buchenwald, Ravensbrück and Oranienburg. There had been allegations of gassings at Bergen-Belsen from time to time although not at Nuremberg. (23-5996)
It was true that the eastern camps such as Auschwitz, which were in the Soviet zone of occupation, could not be investigated. The Soviets took control of Auschwitz and would not allow the Western Allies to investigate for themselves until sometime later. In the immediate post-war period, Auschwitz was kept sealed from Allied investigators. The visit to Majdanek by newspaper reporters, said Weber, was a guided tour by the Soviets. It wasn’t an investigation by any specialized person. (23-5997, 5998)
Weber pointed out that the Auschwitz camp complex produced synthetic gasoline from coal and used prisoners for labour. Their primary purpose, beginning in 1942, was the production of war materials. Himmler’s main interest in the camps, as stated by Harwood, was to assess their importance for the industrial war effort. (23 5998 to 6001) Weber agreed with Harwood’s conclusion that the use of the camps as major production centres did not accord with a policy of exterminating millions of prisoners. One reason was simply that it would be hard to keep secret the extermination of millions of people in a place which was a large industrial centre where thousands of people were coming and going every month from the rest of Europe. (23-6002, 6003)
Contrary to what Harwood claimed, there had been a number of people who had come forward over the years saying they had witnessed gassings, said Weber. Examples were witnesses at the trial of John Demjanjuk and the former Birkenau inmate, Filip Müller. A person who believed their testimony would say they were evidence for gassings. Weber did not believe their testimony for a number of reasons. Firstly, it was not consistent with other evidence; secondly, people claimed to have witnessed gassings at camps where it was now conceded that gassings never took place; thirdly, there was supposedly equally valid testimony that people were killed not by gassing but by steaming people to death or killing them with electricity or by suffocation. Weber pointed out that survivor testimony was notoriously unreliable and had to be looked at very critically. (23-6005)
One of the most important reasons for doubting the Auschwitz story was that it was impossible to cremate the numbers of victims alleged. Raul Hilberg claimed that 1 million Jews were killed at Auschwitz. The cremation of even this number of bodies, rather than the higher figures put forward by others, involved a cremation activity which the facilities at Auschwitz were not capable of in the time alleged. There were four crematories in Birkenau and one crematory at Auschwitz I. Weber pointed out that corpses could not be cremated in just a few seconds or minutes. Using very modern equipment today, it took an hour or two hours to cremate a corpse. With the technology of the Second World War, it took about three hours to cremate a corpse. Yet figures were given in the literature which claimed that from 6,000 to 24,000 bodies a day were being gassed and cremated at Birkenau in 1944. (23-6008, 6011)
Weber agreed with Harwood that it was normally claimed that Jews were gassed immediately upon arrival at the camp and were never registered. Whether the evidence put forward to substantiate this allegation actually proved it, said Weber, was for the historians and the public to evaluate on their own. (23-6012)
Weber also agreed with Harwood’s statement that large numbers of the camp population were released or transported elsewhere during the war. This was known from published sources and elsewhere. In Weber’s opinion, it was inconsistent with the alleged extermination story. In fact, in one “survivor” story published in a book entitled Voices from the Holocaust a Jewish woman who was at Birkenau said she only heard about gas chambers after the war, even though she was there. She found that rather astonishing.3 (23-6013)
As the Soviets approached Auschwitz in January of 1945, said Weber, the camp administration evacuated all the prisoners who were able to move. Many of the prisoners died in the evacuation which was made by train and on foot in the middle of winter. The prisoners who could not walk, sick prisoners, the elderly and children, were left in Auschwitz and were there when the Russians arrived. After the capture of the camp, the Russians took photographs and motion pictures of the inmates who were still there. In Weber’s opinion, if the German purpose was to exterminate the Jews, it was unlikely they would have allowed thousands of Jews who had supposedly witnessed this monstrous extermination to be taken alive by the Soviets. (23- 6014, 6015)
Weber turned to page 18 of the booklet dealing with the Warsaw ghetto:
The case of the Warsaw Ghetto is an instructive insight into the creation of the extermination legend itself. Indeed, its evacuation by the Germans in 1943 is often referred to as the “extermination of the Polish Jews” although it was nothing of the kind, and layers of mythology have tended to surround it after the publication of sensational novels like John Hersey’s The Wall and Leon Uris’ Exodus… [Of] the million or so Jews in Poland, almost half, about 400,000 were eventually concentrated in the ghetto of Warsaw, an area of about two and a half square miles around the old mediaeval ghetto. The remainder had already been moved to the Polish Government-General by September 1940. In the summer of 1942, Himmler ordered the resettlement of all Polish Jews in detention camps in order to obtain their labour, part of the system of general concentration for labour assignment in the Government-General. Thus between July and October 1942, over three quarters of the Warsaw Ghetto’s inhabitants were peacefully evacuated and transported, supervised by the Jewish police themselves. As we have seen, transportation to camps is alleged to have ended in “extermination”, but there is absolutely no doubt from the evidence available that it involved only the effective procurement of labour and the prevention of unrest. In the first place, Himmler discovered on a surprise visit to Warsaw in January 1943 that 24,000 Jews registered as armaments workers were in fact working illegally as tailors and furriers (Manvell and Frankl, ibid, p. 140); the Ghetto was also being used as a base for subversive forays into the main area of Warsaw.
After six months of peaceful evacuation, when only about 60,000 Jews remained in the residential ghetto, the Germans met with an armed rebellion on 18th January, 1943. Manvell and Frankl admit that “The Jews involved in planned resistance had for a long time been engaged in smuggling arms from the outside world, and combat groups fired on and killed S.S. men and militia in charge of a column of deportees.” The terrorists in the Ghetto uprising were also assisted by the Polish Home Army and the PPR — Polska Partia Robotnicza, the Communist Polish Workers Party. It was under these circumstances of a revolt aided by partisans and communists that the occupying forces, as any army would in a similar situation, moved in to suppress the terrorists, if necessary by destroying the residential area itself. It should be remembered that the whole process of evacuation would have continued peacefully had not extremists among the inhabitants planned an armed rebellion which in the end was bound to fail. When S.S. Lieutenant-General Stroop entered the Ghetto with armoured cars on 19th April, he immediately came under fire and lost twelve men; German and Polish casualties in the battle, which lasted four weeks, totalled 101 men killed and wounded. Stubborn resistance by the Jewish Combat Organisation in the face of impossible odds led to an estimated 12,000 Jewish casualties, the majority by remaining in burning buildings and dug outs. A total, however, of 56,065 inhabitants were captured and peacefully resettled in the area of the Government-General. Many Jews within the Ghetto had resented the terror imposed on them by the Combat Organisation, and had attempted to inform on their headquarters to the German authorities.
The circumstances surrounding the Warsaw Ghetto revolt, as well as the deportations to eastern labour camps such as Auschwitz, has led to the most colourful tales concerning the fate of Polish Jews, the largest bloc of Jewry in Europe. The Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, in figures prepared by them for the Nuremberg Trials, stated that in 1945 there were only 80,000 Jews remaining in Poland. They also alleged that there were no Polish-Jewish displaced persons left in Germany or Austria, a claim that was at some variance with the number of Polish Jews arrested by the British and Americans for black market activities. However, the new Communist regime in Poland was unable to prevent a major anti-Jewish pogrom at Kielce on July 4th, 1946 and more than 150,000 Polish Jews suddenly fled into Western Germany. Their appearance was somewhat embarrassing, and their emigration to Palestine and the United States was carried out in record time. Subsequently, the number of Polish Jewish survivors underwent considerable revision; in the American-Jewish Year Book 1948-1949 it was placed at 390,000, quite an advance on the original 80,000. We may expect further revisions upwards in the future.
When the Germans first occupied Poland, ghettos were not immediately set up. The Jewish quarter of Warsaw was first sealed off by the Germans in order to prevent the spread of disease. It was later decided to turn the closed-off area into a permanent ghetto. The internal administration of the ghettos was in the hands of Jewish Councils and they were policed by a Jewish police force, although both agencies were under the overall authority of the Germans. In some ghettos, special currency notes were introduced. The ghettos were not an organization for the destruction of a race. (23-6018, 6019)
The ghettos were often overcrowded and a good number of Jews starved in them. The Germans were concerned about starvation in the Warsaw ghetto but records indicated that protests by German authorities to higher officials about the insufficient amount of food were never properly resolved. Weber noted that there was a great divergence in the population of the Warsaw ghetto itself regarding food. While some Jews in the ghetto were poor and starving, very well-off Jews with businesses in the ghetto were spending enormous amounts of money in restaurants. This could be seen from the diary of Emmanuel Ringelblum who wrote about the conditions in the Warsaw ghetto. He complained in his diary that at the same time some people were dying, others were living very ostentatiously. (23-6020, 6021)
Weber did not believe that the number of Jews under German control could be known exactly since it was not known how many fled into the Soviet Union. He agreed with Harwood, however, that there was an order by Himmler to resettle all Polish Jews in concentration camps in order to obtain their labour. Himmler was very upset when he found that Jews in the Warsaw ghetto were working on things that he felt they shouldn’t be working on. (23-6024 to 6027)
Weber did not know if Harwood’s adjective “peaceful” was accurate in describing the evacuation of the Warsaw ghetto from July to October, 1942, but it was true that a very high percentage of Jews were transported from the ghetto during that period of time and the deportation was supervised by the Jewish police. Historians today alleged that the Jews transported from the Warsaw ghetto were sent to Treblinka where they were killed. Weber was not sure where these Jews went or what happened to them. In his opinion, the record about this subject was still unclear. (23-6025, 6026)
There was a well-organized Jewish underground in the Warsaw ghetto which had prepared for the uprising. The Jewish administration of the ghetto had asked for and received building supplies from the German authorities to build bomb shelters in the ghetto. These were used instead to make bunkers in preparation for the uprising in April of 1943. (23-6017) There had been a dispute among Jewish and Polish historians about how much help the uprising received from the outside. Generally, Polish historians tried to emphasize that they did help during the uprising and Jewish historians insisted that they didn’t. In Weber’s opinion, whatever help was given by the Polish Home Army was minimal and the Communist Party was not a significant factor in the uprising. The Jewish Military Organization (or Jewish Combat Organization) which organized the uprising was made up primarily of Zionists, socialists and leftists. Weber felt that Harwood’s statement that the uprising was aided by partisans and Communists was inaccurate, but indicated that what he was really saying was that, faced with any similar circumstances during a war, a government would put down such an uprising ruthlessly. In history that was what generally happened. (23-6028 to 6030)
Weber agreed with Harwood’s statement that many Jews in the ghetto resented the terror imposed on them by the Combat Organization. This organization in fact shot a number of Jews within the ghetto whom they accused of collaborating with the Germans. The uprising was preceded, by several months, with precisely those kinds of actions against Jews in the ghetto who were considered traitors. The Jewish Combat Organization would put up posters saying that so- and-so had been shot and that others would be shot if they continued to co-operate with the Germans. (23 6033, 6034)
After the war there were pogroms against the Jews in Soviet-occupied Poland, the most famous of which was at Kielce on July 4, 1946. These pogroms convinced many Jews who were still in Poland to leave. Weber did not know the exact figure, but indicated that large numbers of Polish Jews left Poland and went by way of Germany and Italy to other countries, including Israel and the United States. The British government, in a report by a House of Commons inquiry in 1946, said that there were so many Jews coming out of Eastern Europe that it was amounting to a second Jewish exodus. (23-6035, 6036)
Weber turned to page 19 and 20 of the booklet:
The most influential agency in the propagation of the extermination legend has been the paper- back book and magazine industry, and it is through their sensational publications, produced for commercial gain, that the average person is made acquainted with a myth of an entirely political character and purpose. The hey-day of these hate-Germany books was in the 1950’s, when virulent Germanophobia found a ready market, but the industry continues to flourish and is experiencing another boom today. The industry’s products consist generally of so-called “memoirs”, and these fall into two basic categories: those which are supposedly by former S.S. men, camp commandants and the like, and those bloodcurdling reminiscences allegedly by former concentration camp inmates.
Of the first kind, the most outstanding example is Commandant of Auschwitz by Rudolf Höss (London, 1960), which was originally published in the Polish language as Wspomnienia by the Communist Government. Höss, a young man who took over at Auschwitz in 1940, was first arrested by the British and detained at Flensburg, but he was soon handed over to the Polish Communist authorities who condemned him to death in 1947 and executed him almost immediately. The so called Höss memoirs are undoubtedly a forgery produced under Communist auspices, as we shall demonstrate, though the Communists themselves claim that Höss was “ordered to write the story of his life” and a hand-written original supposedly exists, but no one has ever seen it. Höss was subjected to torture and brain-washing techniques by the Communists during the period of his arrest, and his testimony at Nuremberg was delivered in a mindless monotone as he stared blankly into space. Even Reitlinger rejects this testimony as hopelessly untrustworthy. It is indeed remarkable how much of the “evidence” regarding the Six Million stems from Communist sources; this includes the major documents such as the Wisliceny statement and the Höss “memoirs”, which are undoubtedly the two most quoted items in extermination literature, as well as all the information on the so-called “death camps” such as Auschwitz. This information comes from the Jewish Historical Commission of Poland; the Central Commission for the Investigation of War Crimes, Warsaw; and the Russian State War Crimes Commission, Moscow.
Reitlinger acknowledges that the Höss testimony at Nuremberg was a catalogue of wild exaggerations, such as that Auschwitz was disposing of 16,000 people a day, which would mean a total at the end of the war of over 13 million. Instead of exposing such estimates for the Soviet-inspired frauds they obviously are, Reitlinger and others prefer to think that such ridiculous exaggerations were due to “pride” in doing a professional job. Ironically, this is completely irreconcilable with the supposedly authentic Höss memoirs, which make a clever attempt at plausibility by suggesting the opposite picture of distaste for the job. Höss is supposed to have “confessed” to a total of 3 million people exterminated at Auschwitz, though at his own trial in Warsaw the prosecution reduced the number to 1,135,000. However, we have already noted that the Soviet Government announced an official figure of 4 million after their “investigation” of the camp in 1945. This kind of casual juggling with millions of people does not appear to worry the writers of extermination literature.
A review of the Höss “memoirs” in all their horrid detail would be tedious. We may confine ourselves to those aspects of the extermination legend which are designed with the obvious purpose of forestalling any proof of its falsity. Such, for example, is the manner in which the alleged extermination of Jews is described. This was supposed to have been carried out by a “special detachment” of Jewish prisoners. They took charge of the newly arrived contingents at the camp, led them into the enormous “gas-chambers” and disposed of the bodies afterwards. The S.S., therefore, did very little, so that most of the S.S. personnel at the camp could be left in complete ignorance of the “extermination programme”. Of course, no Jew would ever be found who claimed to have been a member of this gruesome “special detachment”, so that the whole issue is left conveniently unprovable. It is worth repeating that no living, authentic eye-witness of these events has ever been produced.
Conclusive evidence that the Höss memoirs are a forgery lies in an incredible slip by the Communist editors. Höss is supposed to say that the Jehovah’s Witnesses at Auschwitz approved of murdering the Jews because the Jews were the enemies of Christ. It is well known that in Soviet Russia today and in all her satellite countries of eastern Europe, the Communists conduct a bitter campaign of suppression against the Jehovah’s Witnesses, whom they regard as the religious sect most dangerous to Communist beliefs. That this sect is deliberately and grossly defamed in the Höss memoirs proves the document’s Communist origins beyond any doubt.
Weber testified that a major and often-quoted source on the Holocaust issue was the memoir of Rudolf Höss, former commandant of Auschwitz. Weber believed there was evidence to support the allegation that it was a forgery, but thought Harwood’s opinion that it was “undoubtedly a forgery” was too sweeping. It was true, however, that the handwritten original had not been made available for inspection by western historians. (23-6038, 6039)
Höss was tortured by the British Military Police, as testified to by one of the British officers who carried out the torture. After Höss testified at Nuremberg, he was turned over to the Communist Polish authorities and kept in jail. He was then tried and executed at Auschwitz. Weber did not know if any torture of Höss took place while he was in Communist custody. (23- 6039, 6040)
Weber believed that the most important evidence of Höss was produced at Nuremberg before he was turned over to the Communists; Harwood’s statement that the Höss memoir was one of the two most quoted items in extermination literature was therefore inaccurate. Nor did Weber agree that the Höss memoirs and the Wisliceny statement were the most quoted items. (23-6040, 6041)
Weber agreed with Harwood that the kind of casual juggling that went on with the numbers of alleged victims did not appear to worry the exterminationists. The figure of 4 million dead at Auschwitz was the figure which the Polish government still used today although serious historians no longer accepted it. The Auschwitz death figures cited by historians varied from 1 million to 4 million. It showed the kind of casual use of statistics which, in other circumstances, would be hard to believe. (23-6043, 6044)
Harwood was wrong, said Weber, in saying that no Jew could ever be found who claimed to have been a member of the gruesome special detachment that conducted the gassings. One such Jew was Filip Müller. It was Harwood’s opinion, however, whether or not these eyewitnesses were authentic. (23-6044, 6045)
Harwood’s statements about the Jehovah’s Witnesses were opinion, said Weber. The Jehovah’s Witnesses believed no one should give allegiance to government and that military service should be refused. (23-6047, 6048)
Other alleged “memoirs” were those of Adolf Eichmann, who was kidnapped from Argentina by an Israeli commando and taken to Israel where he was tried under enormous international publicity. The alleged memoirs of Eichmann, published in Life magazine shortly after he was taken to Israel, were supposed to have been given by Eichmann to a journalist named Sassen in Argentina shortly before his capture. Weber had looked at the book referred to by Harwood entitled Eichmann: The Savage Truth and agreed with Harwood’s assessment that it was full of nonsensical stories. (23-6050 to 6053)
Weber turned to page 20 of the booklet:
The latest reminiscences to appear in print are those of Franz Stangl, the former commandant of the camp at Treblinka in Poland who was sentenced to life imprisonment in December 1970. These were published in an article by the London Daily Telegraph Magazine, October 8th, 1971, and were supposed to derive from a series of interviews with Stangl in prison. He died a few days after the interviews were concluded. These alleged reminiscences are certainly the goriest and most bizarre yet published, though one is grateful for a few admissions by the writer of the article, such as that “the evidence presented in the course of his trial did not prove Stangl himself to have committed specific acts of murder” and that the account of Stangl’s beginnings in Poland “was in part fabrication.”
A typical example of this fabrication was the description of Stangl’s first visit to Treblinka. As he drew into the railway station there, he is supposed to have seen “thousands of bodies’ just strewn around next to the tracks, ‘hundreds, no, thousands of bodies everywhere, putrefying, decomposing”. And “in the station was a train full of Jews, some dead, some still alive … it looked as if it had been there for days.” The account reaches the heights of absurdity when Stangl is alleged to have got out of his car and “stepped kneedeep into money: I didn’t know which way to turn, which way to go. I waded in papernotes, currency, precious stones, jewellery and clothes. They were everywhere, strewn all over the square.” The scene is completed by “whores from Warsaw weaving drunk, dancing, singing, playing music”, who were on the other side of the barbed wire fences. To literally believe this account of sinking “kneedeep” in Jewish bank- notes and precious stones amid thousands of putrefying corpses and lurching, singing prostitutes would require the most phenomenal degree of gullibility, and in any circumstances other than the Six Million legend it would be dismissed as the most outrageous nonsense.
The statement which certainly robs the Stangl memoirs of any vestige of authenticity is his alleged reply when asked why he thought the Jews were being exterminated: “They wanted the Jews’ money,” is the answer. “That racial business was just secondary.” The series of interviews are supposed to have ended on a highly dubious note indeed. When asked whether he thought there had been “any conceivable sense in this horror,” the former Nazi commandant supposedly replied with enthusiasm: “Yes, I am sure there was. Perhaps the Jews were meant to have this enormous jolt to pull them together; to create a people; to identify themselves with each other.” One could scarcely imagine a more perfect answer had it been invented.
Weber testified that Franz Stangl was the former commandant of Treblinka who was serving a life sentence in West Germany. Harwood correctly quoted from a 1971 Daily Telegraph Magazine article which was supposed to derive from a series of interviews with Stangl in prison. Treblinka was usually presented as a secret extermination centre but in fact Treblinka was not a secret camp. Its existence was announced in an official bulletin of the German government in Poland in 1941 and there were internal German documents relating to the camp which confirmed that it was a labour camp. The exterminationists sometimes conceded there was a publicly known labour camp at Treblinka, but they alleged there was another Treblinka camp nearby which was the alleged extermination camp. (23-6053, 6054, 6058 to 6070)
The stories about this camp were very inconsistent with each other, said Weber. For example, at the Nuremberg trial the U.S. prosecution team introduced 3311-PS, a document which alleged that Jews were steamed to death at Treblinka. Today, the allegation was that the Jews were gassed to death using carbon monoxide. 3311-PS was therefore hardly ever referred to today because it was inconsistent with the Holocaust story as it was now presented. A further example of the contradictions was the testimony of a Jew named Samuel Rajzman, who testified before a U.S. Congressional committee in 1946 that Jews were killed in Treblinka, not by gassing or steaming, but by suffocating them to death. After the war, a Jewish Black Book Committee compiled and published a lengthy book entitled The Black Book which stated that 3 million Jews were killed at Treblinka by poison gas, by steaming, but most often, by pumping all the air from the chambers with large special pumps. At the trial of Oswald Pohl, the American judge Michael Musmanno stated that death was inflicted at Treblinka by gas, steam and electric current.4 In Weber’s opinion, these conflicting stories were typical of many of the stories in the Holocaust extermination story. They were fantastic, incredible, self-contradictory. Most were not known today because they were inconsistent with the story as it was now presented. Like Harwood, Weber did not believe the stories which Stangl allegedly gave in the Daily Telegraph Magazine article. (23-6054 to 23-6070)
Weber testified that Harwood made an error with respect to The Diary of Anne Frank. Harwood wrote that the diary was really written by the writer, Meyer Levin, and that Levin sued Otto Frank (Anne Frank’s father), for $50,000.00 because he wasn’t paid his fee. In reality, Meyer Levin was the writer of the screenplay of a motion picture made from the Anne Frank diary and the case discussed by Harwood did not have anything to do with the diary itself. Harwood relied upon secondary sources, however, so the errors were the errors of the sources he had quoted. (23- 6071)
There were reasons to call the Anne Frank diary into question, said Weber. There were important discrepancies between different language versions of the diary; entries which were contained in the German language version did not appear in the English language version and vice versa. Passages had been rewritten and reordered in each edition of the diary.
Some of the criticisms of the diary were based upon two West German court cases. In the first case, the court found that the entire diary was written in the same handwriting. Some years later, the West German Federal Criminal Office found that portions of the diary were written in ball-point pen ink, which was not available during the Second World War. This led to allegations that the diary or at least portions of it were not authentic. Since that time, the Anne Frank Centre in Amsterdam had claimed that the portions written in ball-point pen ink were only minor portions inserted by someone else, but that the diary was essentially authentic. Recently, the Anne Frank Centre had published what it called the “definitive” edition of the diary in an effort to put an end to the criticisms about its authenticity. (23-6074)
Before he died, Otto Frank admitted that he allowed a writer in Holland to edit the diary and rewrite portions of it; he admitted that he had submitted the diary to a review by a friend to eliminate passages that were considered offensive for various reasons. Otto Frank also admitted that a number of names in the diary were pseudonyms. Thus, the diary that was available for sale was not quite what it purported to be. It was an edited, revised, gone-over book which was not a spontaneous diary. This was admitted even by the Anne Frank Institute in Holland and was the reason they produced what they called the “definitive” Anne Frank diary. (23-6076)
A brief reference may also be made to another “diary”, published not long after that of Anne Frank and entitled: Notes from the Warsaw Ghetto: the Journal of Emmanuel Ringelblum (New York, 1958). Ringelblum had been a leader in the campaign of sabotage against the Germans in Poland, as well as the revolt of the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943, before he was eventually arrested and executed in 1944.
Ringelblum was a very important primary source about life in the Warsaw ghetto, said Weber. It was inaccurate to describe Ringelblum as a leader in the campaign of sabotage against the Germans in Poland; Ringelblum was an archivist and made it his responsibility to keep a record of day to day life in the Warsaw ghetto. He was connected with leaders in the ghetto but Weber had seen no evidence to support the statement that he was a leader in sabotage. (23-6077)
Weber turned to page 22 of the booklet:
Since the war, there has been an abundant growth of sensational concentration camp literature, the majority of it Jewish, each book piling horror upon horror, blending fragments of truth with the most grotesque of fantasies and impostures, relentlessly creating an edifice of mythology in which any relation to historical fact has long since disappeared. We have referred to the type already — Olga Lengyel’s absurd Five Chimneys (‘24,000 corpses handled every day’), Doctor at Auschwitz by Miklos Nyiszli, apparently a mythical and invented person, This was Auschwitz: The Story of a Murder Camp by Philip Friedman, and so on ad nauseam.
The latest in this vein is For Those I Loved by Martin Gray (Bodley Head, 1973), which purports to be an account of his experiences at Treblinka camp in Poland. Gray specialised in selling fake antiques to America before turning to concentration camp memoirs. The circumstances surrounding the publication of his book, however, have been unique, because for the first time with works of this kind, serious doubt was cast on the authenticity of its contents. Even Jews, alarmed at the damage it might cause, denounced his book as fraudulent and questioned whether he had ever been at Treblinka at all, while B.B.C. radio pressed him as to why he had waited 28 years before writing of his experiences…
Occasionally, books by former concentration camp inmates appear which present a totally different picture of the conditions prevailing in them. Such is Under Two Dictators (London, 1950) by Margarete Buber. She was. a German-Jewish woman who had experienced several years in the brutal and primitive conditions of a Russian prison camp before being sent to Ravensbrück, the German camp for women detainees, in August 1940. She noted that she was the only Jewish person in her contingent of deportees from Russia who was not straight away released by the Gestapo. Her book presents a striking contrast between the camps of Soviet Russia and Germany; compared to the squalor, disorder and starvation of the Russian camp, she found Ravensbrück to be clean, civilised and well-administered…
Another account which is at total variance with popular propaganda is Die Gestapo Lässt Bitten (The Gestapo Invites You) by Charlotte Bormann, a Communist political prisoner who was also interned at Ravensbrück. Undoubtedly its most important revelation is the author’s statement that rumours of gas executions were deliberate and malicious inventions circulated among the prisoners by the Communists…
Weber was familiar with Olga Lengyel’s book, Five Chimneys; he testified that it did in fact allege that 24,000 corpses were handled every day. This claim had also been made by others. Weber was also familiar with the book by Miklos Nyiszli. He didn’t know whether Nyiszli was mythical or not but to his knowledge no one had come forward and identified himself as that person. Weber had never been able to find out who Nyiszli was, where he was born and so on. Other revisionist historians had also tried to discover his identity and been unsuccessful. (23-6078 to 6159) Weber had made unsuccessful efforts to find the books Auschwitz: The Story of a Murder Camp, and The Gestapo Invites You. (23-6079, 6085) Weber was familiar with the book For Those I Loved by Martin Gray. When his book was published in England, quite a number of articles appeared in leading British newspapers including the Sunday Times, which said that the book was not to be trusted. Jews who were at Treblinka questioned whether Gray had actually even been there. Gray himself was very defensive about the book. (23-6079 to 6081) It was claimed that around 850,000 Jews were gassed at Treblinka but Weber knew of no documentary evidence from the war to support that claim. (23-6081)
Weber was familiar with the book Under Two Dictators by Margarete Buber. Weber believed the evidence indicated that she was not Jewish; however, the account which Harwood had given of her book was accurate. She described her astonishment in comparing conditions in the Soviet labour camp where she had been interned with the much better conditions in the German concentration camp of Ravensbrück. When given her first meal in Ravensbrück of white bread, sausage, sweet porridge and dried fruit, she thought it must be a special holiday. In fact, it was a typical meal. She was also astonished that the camp was clean and had showers and linens. Weber could not recall Buber’s comments, if any, about extermination. He recalled, however, that she wrote that in the last months the conditions deteriorated enormously as part of the general decline of conditions. (23-6083)
In his recent book Adolf Hitler (London, 1973), Colin Cross, who brings more intelligence than is usual to many problems of this period, observes astutely that “The shuffling of millions of Jews around Europe and murdering them, in a time of desperate war emergency, was useless from any rational point of view” (p. 307). Quite so, and at this point we may well question the likelihood of this irrationalism, and whether it was even possible. Is it likely, that at the height of the war, when the Germans were fighting a desperate battle for survival on two fronts, they would have conveyed millions of Jews for miles to supposedly elaborate and costly slaughter houses? To have conveyed three or four million Jews to Auschwitz alone (even supposing that such an inflated number existed in Europe, which it did not), would have placed an insuperable burden upon German transportation facilities which were strained to the limit in supporting the farflung Russian front. To have transported the mythical six million Jews and countless numbers of other nationalities to internment camps, and to have housed, clothed and fed them there, would simply have paralysed their military operations. There is no reason to suppose that the efficient Germans would have put their military fortunes at such risk.
On the other hand, the transportation of a reasonable 363,000 prisoners to Auschwitz in the course of the war (the number we know to have been registered there) at least makes sense in terms of the compulsory labour they supplied. In fact, of the 3 million Jews living in Europe, it is certain that no more than two million were ever interned at one time, and it is probable that the number was much closer to 1,500,000. We shall see later, in the Report of the Red Cross, that whole Jewish populations such as that of Slovakia avoided detention in camps, while others were placed in community ghettos like Theresienstadt. Moreover, from western Europe deportations were far fewer. The estimate of Reitlinger that only about 50,000 French Jews from a total population of 320,000 were deported and interned has been noted already.
The question must also be asked as to whether it could have been physically possible to destroy the millions of Jews that are alleged. Had the Germans enough time for it? Is it likely that they would have cremated people by the million when they were so short of manpower and required all prisoners of war for purposes of war production? Would it have been possible to destroy and remove all trace of a million people in six months? Could such enormous gatherings of Jews and executions on such a vast scale have been kept secret? These are the kind of questions that the critical, thinking person should ask. And he will soon discover that not only the statistical and documentary evidence given here, but simple logistics combine to discredit the legend of the six million.
Although it was impossible for millions to have been murdered in them, the nature and conditions of Germany’s concentration camps have been vastly exaggerated to make the claim plausible. William Shirer, in a typically reckless passage, states that “All of the thirty odd principal Nazi concentration camps were death camps” (ibid, p. 1150). This is totally untrue, and is not even accepted now by the principal propagators of the extermination legend. Shirer also quotes Eugen Kogon’s The Theory and Practice of Hell (N.Y. 195O, p. 227) which puts the total number of deaths in all of them at the ridiculous figure of 7,125,000, though Shirer admits in a footnote that this is “undoubtedly too high.”
Weber testified that the quote from the book of Colin Cross was accurate; Cross believed the extermination programme was irrational. Weber himself believed the extermination story was irrational because it was alleged that at the same time Germany was fighting for its existence it was also using enormous resources to shift Jews all over Europe simply to kill them, including large numbers of Jews who could have been employed for war production. (23-6086)
Weber would not comment on the statistics which Harwood provided regarding numbers of Jews interned as he felt it was too speculative. The Korherr report indicated that there were Jews at Birkenau who were not registered. (23-6087, 6088)
A ghetto camp called Theresienstadt existed and was set aside particularly for elderly Jews, Jews who had served in the German armed forces during World War I, prominent Jews and Jews who had served the German government faithfully. It had been put forward as an extermination camp but more responsible exterminationist historians did not claim that. (23-6089)
The questions which Harwood raised in the second last paragraph of the passage were very good questions, said Weber, and ones that a critical, thinking person should be asking. (23- 6090)
Weber also agreed with Harwood that the claim made by Shirer in The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich that all of the thirty-odd Nazi concentration camps were “death camps” was totally false and reckless. Even the Simon Wiesenthal Center had stated publicly that there were no extermination camps in Germany itself. No serious historian now claimed that camps like Dachau, Bergen-Belsen, Buchenwald, Ravensbrück or Neuengamme were death camps. The claim by Eugen Kogon in The Theory and Practice of Hell was likewise an absurd claim, said Weber, and no serious historian would make that kind of claim today. (23-6092)
March 24, 1988
Weber turned to page 23 of the booklet:
It is true that in 1945, Allied propaganda did claim that all the concentration camps, particularly those in Germany itself, were “death camps”, but not for long. On this question, the eminent American historian Harry Elmer Barnes wrote: “These camps were first presented as those in Germany, such as Dachau, Belsen, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen and Dora, but it was soon demonstrated that there had been no systematic extermination in those camps. Attention was then moved to Auschwitz, Treblinka, Belzec, Chelmno, Jonowska, Tarnow, Ravensbrück, Mauthausen, Brezeznia and Birkenau, which does not exhaust the list that appears to have been extended as needed” (Rampart Journal, Summer 1967). What had happened was that certain honest observers among the British and American occupation forces in Germany, while admitting that many inmates had died of disease and starvation in the final months of the war, had found no evidence after all of “gas chambers”. As a result, eastern camps in the Russian zone of occupation such as Auschwitz and Treblinka gradually came to the fore as horrific centres of extermination (though no one was permitted to see them), and this tendency has lasted to the present day. Here in these camps it was all supposed to have happened, but with the Iron Curtain brought down firmly over them, no one has ever been able to verify such charges. The Communists claimed that four million people died at Auschwitz in gigantic gas chambers accommodating 2,000 people — and no one could argue to the contrary.
Weber testified that the first sentence of this passage was correct. Until about 1960 it was contended that all of the concentration camps in Germany proper were also extermination camps. That claim was no longer upheld. (24-6090, 6091)
The quote of Harry Elmer Barnes was an accurate quote from an article which Barnes published in Rampart Journal, a libertarian journal published in Colorado. The Holocaust story had shifted now to just six camps. (24-6091)
Harwood’s claim that honest observers among the British and American occupation forces found no evidence of “gas chambers” in Germany was accurate, said Weber. It was substantiated by an important document from October of 1948 from the Military Police Service in Vienna which at the time was under the control of the Allied governments. Weber read a translation of a portion of the document to the court:
The Allied Investigation Commissions have up to now ascertained that in the following concentration camps, no humans were killed by poison gas.
These camps are the following: Bergen-Belsen, Buchenwald, Dachau, Flossenbürg, Gross-Rosen, Mauthausen and its adjacent camps, Natzweiler, Neuengamme, Niederhagen, Ravensbrück, Sachsenhausen, Stutthof, Theresienstadt.
In these cases, it can be proven that confessions were extorted by torture and the eyewitness accounts were false…Former concentration camp prisoners, especially Jews, who in the hearings claimed that humans were murdered by poisonous gas in these concentration camps are to be made aware of the findings of this investigation. If they continue insisting on their claims, they are to be charged with giving false testimonies.
This document, said Weber, was issued by a major named Müller in the Austrian police. His deputy was another officer named Emil Lachout who was currently retired and living in Vienna. It was Lachout who made the document public several months ago, creating a sensation. Its authenticity had not been called into question, however, and Lachout had been criticised only for making the embarrassing document public. (24-6093)
Weber pointed out that much important documentation remained inaccessible to researchers. Large numbers of important documentation was still in the hands of the Polish, East German and Soviet Communist governments which had not been made available to independent researchers. From time to time, however, these governments would made public certain extracts from important documents. One of these was quoted in a book published in 1970 entitled Anthology, Inhuman Medicine [Vol. 1, Pt. 1, pp. 149-151] published by the International Auschwitz Committee in Warsaw. This document, entitled Camp Regulations for the Concentration Camps, had been made public by a former inmate of Birkenau named Jan Olbrycht, and was an extract from volume 21 of the official regulations for the operation of the concentration camps. It was clear, said Weber, that the regulations were very extensive. The document stated as follows:
The new arrivals [inmates] in the camp have to be examined carefully. Those suspected should immediately be put into the camp hospital and kept there for observation. Prisoners working in the kitchen for the SS men and in the camp kitchen should be subjected to regular medical examination regarding contagious diseases. The camp physician should, from time to time, check on the cleanliness of the prisoners. Prisoners asking for medical treatment should be brought before the camp doctor that same day to be examined. Should it be necessary, sick prisoners may be sent to the hospital to receive treatment. The doctor is obliged to notify the authorities about prisoners who simulate sickness in order to shirk work so that such prisoners may be punished. There is a dentist at the disposal of the prisoners. The camp doctor has to confirm the necessity for dental treatment. The camp doctor should regularly check how the food is prepared and its quality. Any shortcoming should immediately be brought to the attention of the camp commandant. Special care should be given to the treatment of accidents, so as to avoid impairment of the prisoners’ ability to earn their living. Prisoners who are to be set free or transferred from the camp should be brought before the camp physician for medical examination. Subordinated to the camp physician are doctors of medicine, a dentist and the S.D.G., as well as orderlies from among the prisoners. The camp physician performs the function of advisor to the camp commandant regarding all medical, sanitary and hygienic matters. He should immediately notify the camp commandant about all offences he notices in camp.5
This was an example of the type of documentation which was still not made available freely to researchers and historians by the Communist governments, said Weber. (24-6097, 6098)
Weber turned to page 23 of the booklet:
What is the truth about so-called “gas chambers”? Stephen F. Pinter, who served as a lawyer for the United States War Department in the occupation forces in Germany and Austria for six years after the war, made the following statement in the widely read Catholic magazine Our Sunday Visitor, June 14th , 1959: “I was in Dachau for 17 months after the war, as a U.S. War Department Attorney, and can state that there was no gas chamber at Dachau. What was shown to visitors and sightseers there and erroneously described as a gas chamber was a crematory. Nor was there a gas chamber in any of the other concentration camps in Germany. We were told that there was a gas chamber at Auschwitz, but since that was in the Russian zone of occupation, we were not permitted to investigate since the Russians would not allow it. From what I was able to determine during six postwar years in Germany and Austria, there were a number of Jews killed, but the figure of a million was certainly never reached. I interviewed thousands of Jews, former inmates of concentration camps in Germany and Austria, and consider myself as well qualified as any man on this subject.”
This tells a very different story from the customary propaganda. Pinter, of course, is very astute on the question of the crematory being represented as a gas chamber. This is a frequent ploy because no such thing as a gas chamber has ever been shown to exist in these camps, hence the deliberately misleading term a “gas oven”, aimed at confusing a gas chamber with a crematorium. The latter, usually a single furnace and similar to the kind of thing employed today, were used quite simply for the cremation of those persons who had died from various natural causes within the camp, particularly infectious diseases…
The figures of Dachau casualties are typical of the kind of exaggerations that have since had to be drastically revised. In 1946, a memorial plaque was unveiled at Dachau by Philip Auerbach, the Jewish State-Secretary in the Bavarian Government who was convicted for embezzling money which he claimed as compensation for non-existent Jews. The plaque read: “This area is being retained as a shrine to the 238,000 individuals who were cremated here.” Since then, the official casualty figures have had to be steadily revised downwards, and now stand at only 20,600 the majority from typhus and starvation only at the end of the war. This deflation, to ten per cent of the original figure, will doubtless continue, and one day will be applied to the legendary figure of six million as a whole.
Another example of drastic revision is the present estimate of Auschwitz casualties. The absurd allegations of three or four million deaths there are no longer plausible even to Reitlinger. He now puts the number of casualties at only 600,000; and although this figure is still exaggerated in the extreme, it is a significant reduction on four million and further progress is to be expected.
Weber had checked the Stephen Pinter letter and found that Pinter was indeed who he said he was. He lived for many years in St. Louis and died in 1985. Harwood quoted the letter accurately in the booklet. Weber had seen a copy of an affidavit which Pinter had subsequently signed, confirming the letter’s accuracy. What Pinter said was also confirmed by independent evidence such as the Müller/Lachout document. Western Allied investigators were not allowed to investigate Auschwitz freely. (24-6099, 6100)
With respect to Dachau, an official U.S. Army photograph taken of a small disinfection chamber at the camp had been widely reprinted and represented as being the front of a gas chamber for human beings. It was printed, for example, in a booklet published by the Anti- Defamation League of B’nai Brith in New York. It was reprinted in the memoirs of former Dachau inmate Nerin Gun. Today, however, there was no dispute that no gassings took place at Dachau. (24-6101)
Weber had researched the originals of the Dachau photographs in the Photographic Department in the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C.. The photograph which appeared on page 25 of Did Six Million Really Die? with the caption “Healthy and cheerful inmates released from Dachau” was one of the photographs Weber had seen there. It was an official U.S. Army photograph taken on the day the camp was liberated by American forces in April of 1945, showing the inmates and an American soldier. One of the most interesting photographs he saw was one of Jewish mothers and their newborn babies who were in Dachau at the time of liberation. There were also photographs that showed death, including a trainload of dead inmates on a siding just outside the camp. It was apparently a trainload of inmates that died of starvation or disease before the train finally got to Dachau. It was important to realize in this context, said Weber, that in the final months of the war the German transportation system was in chaos. All of the camps in Germany proper were overcrowded and inmates were being shuttled around from place to place because there was no room for them. The trains could not normally move during the daytime because the air was controlled by the Allies, who would shoot at any trains moving during the day. Even at night the German train system was in chaos. (24-6102, 6103)
Weber also investigated the death records for Dachau at the National Archives in Washington. These documents, which were entered as a prosecution exhibit in a war crimes trial after the war, contained precise month-by-month records of prisoner deaths in the camp. Weber produced a graph which was based upon these figures on a monthly basis. The figures showed that at precisely the time when it was alleged that the greatest extermination was being carried out in the German camps, namely, the summer and fall of 1944, the death rate at Dachau was the lowest. At that time, monthly deaths were in the range of 40, 45, 57, 43 and so on. The figures rose very dramatically from the fall of 1944 to April of 1945. The worst monthly death rate recorded at Dachau, in February of 1945, was due, not to a programme of killing, but to disease and starvation caused by the tremendous overcrowding in the camp resulting from the chaotic and unorderly conditions in Germany in the final months of the war. (24-6106, 6107; graph of Dachau deaths entered as Exhibit 100 at 24-6107)
For a time after the war, said Weber, it was claimed that about 200,000 persons died at Dachau. A sign placed at the camp proclaimed that 230,000 persons died there and that their memory should be honoured. The director of Dachau Museum, Barbara Distel, had now confirmed, however, that this claim was not accurate. She indicated that some persons in publications had confused the figure of 200,000 or so inmates altogether at the camp with the number of persons who supposedly died there. The figure for deaths at Dachau now stood at 25,613. (24-6111, 6112, 6114)
Weber agreed with Harwood’s statements regarding Stephen Pinter’s astuteness on the question of the crematory being represented as a gas chamber. This often occurred in Holocaust literature, said Weber, and the distinction between the two was deliberately confused. One often found references to so-called “gas ovens” which was a nonsensical, meaningless term. It implied that somehow there was a combination of a crematory and a gas chamber when the two were completely different things. It was typical, however, of the sensational terminology used in Holocaust literature. (24-6108)
The most famous crematories were those at Auschwitz. The records were clear that these crematories, which were fairly large, were built in response to an epidemic of typhus in the camp. There was great concern that the corpses should be cremated as quickly as possible to prevent the spread of the disease. The ground water at Auschwitz was high, so it was dangerous for the health of others in the camp, both inmates and administrators, to bury the bodies; hence the need for crematories. (24 6109)
Weber agreed with Harwood that the death estimates for prisoners at various concentration camps had been drastically revised downwards over the years. Normally, the exterminationists did not make it clear that the figures had been changed; they simply presented new figures without explaining why the old ones were no longer accurate. Weber disagreed with Harwood’s opinion that the 6 million figure would eventually be revised downwards to 600,000. Weber thought the total Jewish losses during the war were probably in the order of 1 million to 1.5 million. (24-6112 to 6115)
Reitlinger’s figure of 600,000 for deaths in Auschwitz was a ball park figure with what was claimed by others, said Weber. Hilberg said that 1 million Jews died in Auschwitz. This was 25 percent of the 4 million dead claimed at Nuremberg. (24 6115, 6116)
Weber turned to page 24 of the booklet:
All internees, unlike those in Soviet camps, could receive parcels of food, clothing and pharmaceutical supplies from the Special Relief Division of the Red Cross. The Office of the Public Prosecutor conducted thorough investigations into each case of criminal arrest, and those found innocent were released; those found guilty, as well as those deportees convicted of major crimes within the camp, were sentenced by military courts and executed. In the Federal Archives of Koblenz there is a directive of January 1943 from Himmler regarding such executions, stressing that “no brutality is to be allowed” (Manvell and Frankl, ibid, p. 312). Occasionally there was brutality, but such cases were immediately scrutinised by S.S. Judge Dr. Konrad Morgen of the Reich Criminal Police Office, whose job was to investigate irregularities at the various camps. Morgen himself prosecuted commander Koch of Buchenwald in 1943 for excesses at his camp, a trial to which the German public were invited. It is significant that Oswald Pohl, the administrator of the concentration camp system who was dealt with so harshly at Nuremberg, was in favour of the death penalty for Koch. In fact, the S.S. court did sentence Koch to death, but he was given the option of serving on the Russian front. Before he could do this, however, Prince Waldeck, the leader of the S.S. in the district, carried out his execution. This case is ample proof of the seriousness with which the S.S. regarded unnecessary brutality. Several S.S. court actions of this kind were conducted in the camps during the war to prevent excesses, and more than 800 cases were investigated before 1945. Morgen testified at Nuremberg that he discussed confidentially with hundreds of inmates the prevailing conditions in the camps. He found few that were undernourished except in the hospitals, and noted that the pace and achievement in compulsory labour by inmates was far lower than among German civilian workers…
In general, hundreds of affidavits from Nuremberg testify to the humane conditions prevailing in concentration camps; but emphasis was invariably laid on those which reflected badly on the German administration and could be used for propaganda purposes. A study of the documents also reveals that Jewish witnesses who resented their deportation and internment in prison camps tended to greatly exaggerate the rigours of their condition, whereas other nationals interned for political reasons, such as those cited above, generally presented a more balanced picture. In many cases, prisoners such as Charlotte Bormann, whose experiences did not accord with the picture presented at Nuremberg, were not permitted to testify.
With respect to this portion of the booklet, Weber testified that the directive by Himmler did in fact specify that no brutality was to be allowed against camp inmates. The directive was quoted by Manvell and Fraenkel, who were exterminationist Jewish writers, in their biography of Himmler. Weber pointed out that it was a common practice for a writer or historian to quote from a source which took a contrary view to the overall thesis which the writer or historian was seeking to establish. (24-6117)
Dr. Konrad Morgen was an official in the SS who was ordered by Himmler to investigate cases of corruption and other illegal activity within the SS concentration camp system. Morgen testified at the main Nuremberg trial and his testimony of August 7, 1946 was printed in its entirely in Volume 20 of the official Nuremberg Blue Series. Weber emphasized that Morgen was now a respected attorney in Frankfurt, West Germany and his sympathies were completely anti- Nazi. During the war, Morgen investigated such camps as Buchenwald, Lublin, Majdanek, Auschwitz, Sachsenhausen, Oranienburg and Dachau. He investigated about 800 cases altogether and about 200 persons were put on trial. Five concentration camp commandants were arrested personally by Morgen. Two commandants were shot after being tried by the SS for corruption and illegal activity; one of these was Koch, the commandant of Buchenwald, who had killed inmates after stealing money from them. Morgen also investigated the case of Dr. Hoven at Buchenwald; Hoven was sentenced to death by the SS but was given a reprieve because of the shortage of doctors. After the war, he was tried by the Americans and shot. It was established that Hoven had been involved in the killing of prisoners in co-operation with the Communist internal camp organization which took almost complete control of the administration of Buchenwald during the latter part of the war. (24-6118 to 6120)
At Nuremberg, Morgen testified that the prisoners at Buchenwald were healthy, normally fed, suntanned and working. The installations in the camp were in good order, especially the hospital. They had regular mail service, a large camp library with books in foreign languages, variety shows, motion pictures, sporting contests, and even a brothel. Morgen said that the commandant aimed at providing the prisoners with an existence worthy of human beings. Nearly all the other concentration camps were similar to Buchenwald. With respect to Auschwitz, Morgen testified that there were large scale killings going on at Auschwitz that Commandant Höss knew about. Morgen had not been able to investigate this charge fully. He identified Monowitz as the location at Auschwitz where the killings took place. Weber pointed out, however, that today no one claimed that any killings took place at Monowitz. (24-6120, 6121)
Weber agreed there were many affidavits at Nuremberg about the humane conditions at the camps. The prosecution, however, tried to emphasize evidence which reflected as badly as it could make it on the German administration. (24-6123)
Weber agreed with Harwood’s statement that Jewish witnesses who resented their deportation greatly exaggerated the rigours of their conditions. This was confirmed in two important sources. The first was an article in Jewish Social Studies published in New York City in January 1950 by the Jewish writer Samuel Gringauz. He wrote the following regarding Jewish survivor testimony:
Last but not least there is what may perhaps be termed the hyperhistorical complex of the survivors. Never before was an event so deeply sensed by its participants as being part of an epoch-shaping history in the making, never before was a personal experience felt to be so historically relevant. The result of this hyperhistorical complex has been that the brief post-war years have seen a flood of “historical materials” — rather “contrived” than “collected” — so that to-day one of the most delicate aspects of research is the evaluation of the so-called “research material.”
The hyperhistorical complex may be described as judeocentric, lococentric and egocentric. It concentrates historical relevance on Jewish problems of local events under the aspect of personal experience. This is the reason why most of the memoirs and reports are full of preposterous verbosity, graphomanic exaggeration, dramatic effects, overestimated self-inflation, dilletante philosophizing, would-be lyricism, unchecked rumors, bias, partisan attacks and apologies. The question thus arises whether participants of such a world-shaking epoch can at all be its historians and whether the time has already come when valid historic judgment, free of partisanship, vindictiveness and ulterior motives, is possible.
In Weber’s opinion, Gringauz had said something which should be taken into account when evaluating the testimonies and evidence of the so-called “survivors.” A historian had a responsibility to evaluate evidence very carefully and critically in the context of all the available evidence and not to accept statements by individuals because they happened to suit his own preconceptions. (24-6126)
The second important source was an article which appeared in the Israeli newspaper, The Jerusalem Post of August 17, 1986. Under the headline “Doubts Over Evidence Of Camp Survivors,” the article said:
Over half of the 20,000 testimonies from Holocaust survivors on record at Yad Vashem are “unreliable” and have never been used as evidence in Nazi war crimes trials, Yad Vashem Archives director Shmuel Krakowski has told The Jerusalem Post.
Krakowski says that many survivors, wanting “to be part of history” may have let their imaginations run away with them. “Many were never in the places where they claim to have witnessed atrocities, while others relied on second-hand information given them by friends or passing strangers” according to Krakowski.
“A large number of testimonies on file were later proved inaccurate when locations and dates could not pass an expert historian’s appraisal.”
Weber testified that Reitlinger, in The Final Solution, also made reference to the tendency of Jewish survivors to exaggerate their stories. (24-6130)
Weber turned to page 24 and 25 of the booklet:
The orderly situation prevailing in the German concentration camps slowly broke down in the last fearful months of 1945. The Red Cross Report of 1948 explains that the saturation bombing by the Allies paralysed the transport and communications system of the Reich, no food reached the camps and starvation claimed an increasing number of victims, both in prison camps and among the civilian population of Germany. This terrible situation was compounded in the camps both by great overcrowding and the consequent outbreak of typhus epidemics. Overcrowding occurred as a result of prisoners from the eastern camps such as Auschwitz being evacuated westward before the Russian advance; columns of such exhausted people arrived at several German camps such as Belsen and Buchenwald which had themselves reached a state of great hardship. Belsen camp near Bremen was in an especially chaotic condition in these months and Himmler’s physician, Felix Kersten, an anti-Nazi, explains that its unfortunate reputation as a “death camp” was due solely to the ferocity of the typhus epidemic which broke out there in March 1945 (Memoirs 1940-1945, London, 1956). Undoubtedly these fearful conditions cost several thousand lives, and it is these conditions that are represented in the photographs of emaciated human beings and heaps of corpses which the propagandists delight in showing, claiming, that they are victims of “extermination”.
Weber testified that the first sentence in this passage from the booklet was correct. In the final months of the war as the Soviet forces advanced into Poland and Germany, the Germans evacuated large numbers of concentration camp inmates to camps further to the west in Germany proper. This happened under extremely chaotic conditions and many prisoners died. (24-6130, 6131)
In Weber’s opinion, the final statement was also accurate. Most educated persons in the western world were familiar with the repeatedly-shown horrific photographs of corpses and emaciated prisoners taken by the American and British forces at Belsen, Nordhausen and other camps at the end of the war. These photographs were usually presented as evidence of how diabolical the Germans were. This was very misleading, said Weber. The photographs in fact showed victims, not of any German programme or policy, but of the war itself. Most had been evacuated from other camps in the east under chaotic conditions. In Weber’s opinion, if the Germans had meant to kill them, they would have long since been killed. (24-6132, 6133)
Not only were situations such as those at Belsen unscrupulously exploited for propaganda purposes, but this propaganda has also made use of entirely fake atrocity photographs and films. The extreme conditions at Belsen applied to very few camps indeed; the great majority escaped the worst difficulties and all their inmates survived in good health. As a result, outright forgeries were used to exaggerate conditions of horror. A startling case of such forgery was revealed in the British Catholic Herald of October 29th, 1948. It reported that in Cassel, where every adult German was compelled to see a film representing the “horrors” of Buchenwald, a doctor from Goettingen saw himself on the screen looking after the victims. But he had never been to Buchenwald. After an interval of bewilderment he realised that what he had seen was part of a film taken after the terrible air raid on Dresden by the Allies on 13th February, 1945 where the doctor had been working. The film in question was shown in Cassel on 19th October, 1948. After the air raid on Dresden, which killed a record 135,000 people, mostly refugee women and children, the bodies of the victims were piled and burned in heaps of 400 and 500 for several weeks. These were the scenes, purporting to be from Buchenwald, which the doctor had recognised.
The forgery of war-time atrocity photographs is not new. For further information the reader is referred to Arthur Ponsonby’s book Falsehood in Wartime (London, 1928), which exposes the faked photographs of German atrocities in the First World War. Ponsonby cites such fabrications as “The Corpse Factory” and “The Belgian Baby without Hands,” which are strikingly reminiscent of the propaganda relating to Nazi “atrocities”. F. J. P. Veale explains in his book that the bogus “jar of human soap” solemnly introduced by the Soviet prosecution at Nuremberg was a deliberate jibe at the famous British “Corpse Factory” myth, in which the ghoulish Germans were supposed to have obtained various commodities from processing corpses (Veale, ibid, p. 192). This accusation was one for which the British Government apologised after 1918. It received new life after 1945 in the tale of lamp shades of human skin, which was certainly as fraudulent as the Soviet “human soap”. In fact, from Manvell and Frankl we have the grudging admission that the lamp shade evidence at Buchenwald Trial “later appeared to be dubious” (The Incomparable Crime, p. 84). It was given by a certain Andreas Pffffenberger in a “written affidavit” of the kind discussed earlier, but in 1948 General Lucius Clay admitted that the affidavits used in the trial appeared after more thorough investigation to have been mostly “hearsay”.
Weber had heard of films taken by Germans following the horrific Allied bombing of Dresden being subsequently presented as concentration camp victims, but he did not know about it. Harwood gave a figure of 135,000 dead at Dresden, but the historian David Irving had given a figure of 235,000. Weber pointed out that the Jews and other inmates of camps who died in the final months of the war died as an indirect result of that war. The victims of the Dresden air bombing, however, were killed as a direct part of the war. They were literally “holocausted,” which meant to be burned. (24-6133, 6134)
Weber was familiar with Arthur Ponsonby’s book Falsehood in Wartime, which emphasized phony atrocity stories attributed to the Germans during World War I. In 1938, a very high British official made a blanket apology to the Germans in the House of Commons for the kinds of atrocity propaganda falsehoods that were made by the Allies during World War I. (24- 6135, 6136)
At Nuremberg, the Soviet prosecution presented what was purported to be soap made from human corpses. This story had circulated for years, said Weber, although no serious historian believed it today. The soap story had been repeated even in recently published books such as Hitler’s Death Camps by an American writer named Konnilyn G. Feig. (24-6135, 6136)
Another story which sometimes popped up in popular literature and newspapers was the story that the Germans manufactured lamp shades from the corpses of their victims. This story was presented both at Nuremberg by the Allies and at the post war trial of the wife of Buchenwald commandant Koch. Weber testified that the evidence against Mrs. Ilse Koch was totally spurious. General Lucius Clay, the commander in Europe and the military governor of the occupation zone of Germany after the war, carefully reviewed the case of Mrs. Koch and the lamp shade charge and concluded that it was baseless. He told the New York Times that there was no convincing evidence that Ilse Koch selected inmates for extermination in order to secure tattooed skins or that she possessed any articles made of human skin. In a 1976 interview, Clay said that the white lamp shades that turned up at Buchenwald were actually made of goat flesh and, as he put it, ‘these were the kinds of things we had to deal with all the time’ in the post-war period. (24- 6137, 6138)
Weber turned to page 28 of the booklet:
Without doubt the most important contribution to a truthful study of the extermination question has been the work of the French historian, Professor Paul Rassinier. The pre-eminent value of this work lies firstly in the fact that Rassinier actually experienced life in the German concentration camps, and also that, as a Socialist intellectual and anti-Nazi, nobody could be less inclined to defend Hitler and National Socialism. Yet, for the sake of justice and historical truth, Rassinier spent the remainder of his post-war years until his death in 1966 pursuing research which utterly refuted the Myth of the Six Million and the legend of Nazi diabolism… Not surprisingly, his writings are little known; they have rarely been translated from the French and none at all have appeared in English.
When Did Six Million Really Die? was published in 1976 Paul Rassinier was certainly the most important revisionist historian on the Holocaust issue, said Weber. Since that time, there had been a number of other writers who published revisionist works. Harwood correctly summarized Rassinier’s background and his books. Rassinier’s works were better known today than they were in the 1970s and most of his books had been translated into English and German. In Weber’s opinion, it was clear that Harwood relied very heavily on Rassinier’s work in writing the booklet. (24-6139 to 6147)
Rassinier entitled his first book The Lies of Odysseus in commemoration of the fact that travellers always return bearing tall stories, and until his death he investigated all the stories of extermination literature and attempted to trace their authors. He made short work of the extravagant claims about gas chambers at Buchenwald in David Rousset’s The Other Kingdom (New York, 1947); himself an inmate of Buchenwald, Rassinier proved that no such things ever existed there (Le Mensonge d’Ulysse, p. 209 ff) Rassinier also traced Abbe Jean-Paul Renard, and asked him how he could possibly have testified in his book Chaines et Lumieres that gas chambers were in operation at Buchenwald. Renard replied that others had told him of their existence, and hence he had been willing to pose as a witness of things that he had never seen (ibid, p. 209 ff).
There were serious claims made that gas chambers existed at Buchenwald, said Weber. At the Nuremberg trial, an official French prosecution exhibit was entered as document 274-F (IMT vol. 37, pp. 116-187) which said:
Everything had been provided for down to the smallest detail in 1944 at Buchenwald. They had even lengthened a railroad line so that the deportees might be led directly to the gas chamber. Certain of the gas chambers had a floor that tipped and immediately directed the bodies into a room with the crematory oven.
The chief British prosecutor at Nuremberg, Sir Hartley Shawcross, declared in his closing address that murder was conducted like some mass production industry in the gas chambers and the ovens. He then listed several camps where this allegedly happened, said Weber, including Buchenwald. Today, neither Raul Hilberg nor even Simon Wiesenthal claimed there were gassings at Buchenwald.6 (24-6147)
The French-Jewish historian Olga Wormser-Migot wrote a doctoral dissertation on the German concentration camps (subsequently published by the University Press of France) in which she made the point that many Jewish inmates in the camps made up stories about gas chambers.7 Wormser-Migot attributed this to their desire to portray their own experiences in their own camps as being just as terrible as the gas chambers that were said to exist in the eastern camps. (24-6148)
Weber was familiar with Abbe Jean-Paul Renard, whom Rassinier had traced. Renard was a French priest and a former inmate of Buchenwald who wrote a book after the war on his experience in the camp in which he wrote:
I saw going into the showers thousands and thousands of persons over whom poured out, instead of liquid, asphyxiating gases.8
When Paul Rassinier, who was also a Frenchman and former Buchenwald inmate, spoke with Renard and pointed out to the priest that there was no gas chamber in the camp, Renard replied: “Right, but that’s only a figure of speech…and since those things existed somewhere, it is of no importance.”9 Rassinier recorded this conversation with Renard in his book. The significance, said Weber, was that in this case and in others, even a priest had made claims which were false. (24-6149)
Weber returned to page 28 and 29 of the booklet:
The palm for extermination literature is awarded by Rassinier to Miklos Nyizli’s Doctor at Auschwitz, in which the falsification of facts, the evident contradictions and shameless lies show that the author is speaking of places which it is obvious he has never seen (Le Drame des Juifs européen, p. 52). According to this “doctor of Auschwitz”, 25,000 victims were exterminated every day for four and a half years, which is a grandiose advance on Olga Lengyel’s 24,000 a day for two and a half years. It would mean a total of forty-one million victims at Auschwitz by 1945, two and a half times the total pre-war Jewish population of the world. When Rassinier attempted to discover the identity of this strange “witness”, he was told that “he had died some time before the publication of the book.” Rassinier is convinced that he was never anything but a mythical figure.
Since the war, Rassinier has, in fact, toured Europe in search of somebody who was an actual eye- witness of gas chamber exterminations in German concentration camps during World War Two, but he has never found even one such person… Certainly the most important fact to emerge from Rassinier’s studies, and of which there is now no doubt at all, is the utter imposture of “gas chambers”… Finally, Professor Rassinier draws attention to an important admission by Dr. Kubovy, director of the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation at Tel-Aviv, made in La Terre Retrouvée, December 15th, 1960. Dr. Kubovy recognised that not a single order for extermination exists from Hitler, Himmler, Heydrich or Göring (Le Drame des Juifs européen, p. 31, 39).
Weber was familiar with the works of both Miklos Nyiszli and Olga Lengyel. Both claimed in the order of 24,000 to 25,000 people were exterminated every day for some period of time, usually given as the summer of 1944. Weber considered these claims to be fantastic, yet both authors were considered important sources for those who upheld the extermination story at Auschwitz. (24-6154 to 6157)
Harwood’s statement that Rassinier had never found one person who was an actual eyewitness to gassings in German concentration camps was not true, said Weber. In Debunking the Genocide Myth, Rassinier reported that he met a German who asked not to be identified who claimed there were unauthorized gassings carried out on a very small scale by individuals acting on their own in Poland. Rassinier was very interested in the man’s testimony, but in later life he came to believe less and less that anyone had ever been gassed anywhere. He started out essentially to testify about what he knew from his experience at Buchenwald and this led to an investigation of the gassing claim for other places. Rassinier, said Weber, had no reason to uphold either view since he was not sympathetic to the Nazi regime. (24 6159, 6160)
Weber did not agree with Harwood’s conclusion that the gas chambers had been proven to be an utter imposture. Weber believed there was still some doubt about whether gassings ever took place anytime or anywhere under German control. He personally did not believe there were gassings but also believed that the question still needed to be investigated. (24-6162)
The quote attributed by Harwood to Dr. Kubovy was correct and appeared in the French periodical La Terre Retrouvé. Kubovy was the director of The Centre for Contemporary Jewish Documentation in Israel and was quoted in the article as stating that there was not a single order in existence for extermination by Hitler, Himmler, Heydrich or Göring. (24-6168)
Weber turned to page 29 of the booklet:
Rassinier also rejects any written or oral testimony to the Six Million given by the kind of “witnesses” cited above, since they are full of contradictions, exaggerations and falsehoods…With the help of one hundred pages of cross-checked statistics, Professor Rassinier concludes in Le Drame des Juifs européen that the number of Jewish casualties during the Second World War could not have exceeded 1,200,000, and he notes that this has finally been accepted as valid by the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation at Paris. However, he regards such a figure as a maximum limit, and refers to the lower estimate of 896,892 casualties in a study of the same problem by the Jewish statistician Raul Hilberg.
Harwood accurately summarized Rassinier’s position in this passage with some exceptions, said Weber. Rassinier did not just dismiss out-of-hand any written or oral testimony although he did tend to reject it. Weber also believed Rassinier did not state his rejection of such testimony as that of Höss and Hoettl as strongly as Harwood had claimed. Weber had investigated Rassinier’s analysis of Raul Hilberg’s statistics and found that Rassinier was not accurate. Hilberg did not give an estimate of 896,892 casualties, but rather in the order of 5.1 million casualties. Harwood had, however, correctly quoted Rassinier’s analysis of Hilberg’s statistics. (24-6171 to 6176)
Prof. Rassinier is emphatic in stating that the German Government never had any policy other than the emigration of Jews overseas…
After the outbreak of war, the Jews, who, as Rassinier reminds us, had declared economic and financial war on Germany as early as 1933, were interned in concentration camps, “which is the way countries all over the world treat enemy aliens in time of war … It was decided to regroup them and put them to work in one immense ghetto which, after the successful invasion of Russia, was situated towards the end of 1941 in the so-called Eastern territories near the former frontier between Russia and Poland: at Auschwitz, Chelmno, Belzec, Majdanek, Treblinka etc … There they were to wait until the end of the war for the re-opening of international discussions which would decide their future” (Le Véritable Proces Eichmann, p. 20). The order for this concentration in the eastern ghetto was given by Göring to Heydrich, as noted earlier, and it was regarded as a prelude to “the desired final solution,” their emigration overseas after the war had ended.”
Weber questioned whether Rassinier stated that the German government never had any policy other than the emigration of Jews overseas. Weber also pointed out that the Göring order referred to by Harwood did not refer specifically to concentration in the eastern ghettos; it said only that the “final solution” must consist of emigration and deportation of the Jews. He agreed, however, that the concentration of the Jews in the east was a prelude to the “final solution,” their emigration overseas after the war had ended. Weber based his opinion on the fact that the term “final solution” was used over and over in German documents to refer to the removal of the Jews from Europe altogether, first by emigration, and later by deportation. In July of 1942 Hitler emphasized his determination to remove all Jews from Europe after the war to Madagascar or some other Jewish national state. He said that Europe must reject them because the Jews were racially tougher. (24-6176, 6183, 6184)
Harwood’s statement that the Jews had declared economic and financial war on Germany in the 1930s was accurate. Chaim Weizmann issued what amounted to a declaration of war in 1939. A number of Jewish leaders, most notably Samuel Untermeyer, declared and organized an international boycott of German products in order to put financial pressure on Germany to change its policy towards the Jews; Untermeyer referred to this international economic campaign against Germany as a “holy war.” The major Jewish organizations in the United States and other countries eventually supported this international boycott against German goods. (24-6180, 6181)
Weber turned to page 30 of the booklet:
Of great concern to Professor Rassinier is the way in which the extermination legend is deliberately exploited for political and financial advantage, and in this he finds Israel and the Soviet Union to be in concert…
As for Israel, Rassinier sees the myth of the Six Million as inspired by a purely material problem. In Le Drame des Juifs européen (P. 31, 39). he writes:
“…It is simply a question of justifying by a proportionate number of corpses the enormous subsidies which Germany has been paying annually since the end of the war to the State of Israel by way of reparation for injuries which moreover she cannot be held to have caused her either morally or legally, since there was no State of Israel at the time the alleged deeds took place; thus it is a purely and contemptibly material problem.”
Weber agreed that the extermination legend was deliberately exploited for political and financial advantage. There were numerous examples of how that exploitation took place and it had been confirmed by numerous Jewish writers themselves. For example, Professor W. D. Rubinstein of Australia wrote in September, 1979:
If the Holocaust can be shown to be a “Zionist myth”, the strongest of all weapons in Israel’s propaganda armory collapses.
Israeli leaders on numerous occasions referred to the Holocaust to justify or increase support for specific policies at specific times. Jacobo Timerman, a prominent Jewish writer, said that the Holocaust story was exploited and that many Jews were even ashamed of the way that it had become a civil religion for Jews in the United States. (24-6185 to 6188)
Weber did not believe that it was exploited so much to obtain money, although that was a feature of it, as to create the idea that if a people as civilized and as cultured as the Germans could turn into murderous Nazis and kill all the Jews, then the Jews should be very wary and untrusting of all people and rely only upon themselves. The story was used to greatly increase a sense of solidarity among Jews. (24-6188)
In Weber’s opinion, the Communist governments upheld the Holocaust story, but in different ways and for different purposes. For the Soviets, and to a lesser extent for the American, West German and British governments, the main purpose of the Holocaust story was to depict the Hitler regime in the worst possible way and thereby show that their own struggle during the Second World War was justified and proper. (24-6186 to 6189)
Weber did not believe it was true to say that Germany paid Israel sums calculated on 6 million dead. Under the 1953 Luxembourg Treaty signed between the Israeli government, the West German government and a special international Jewish organization known as the Claims Conference (which represented Jewish organizations in 20 countries), the basis for the reparations were the great crimes and injustices done to the Jewish people. No number of victims and no policy of extermination were specified. The very nature of the Luxembourg Treaty and the reparations agreement presupposed that the Jews of the world were to be represented not by the governments of the countries of which they were citizens, but rather by the state of Israel and by the Claims Conference which was a special supranational corporation. The Luxembourg Agreement had no parallel in diplomatic or international history. (24-6190 to 6192)
Weber returned to page 30 of the booklet:
Moreover, official Jewish estimates of the casualties are being quietly revised downwards. Our analysis of the population and emigration statistics, as well as the studies by the Swiss Baseler Nachrichten and Professor Rassinier, demonstrate that it would have been simply impossible for the number of Jewish casualties to have exceeded a limit of one and a half million. It is very significant, therefore, that the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation in Paris now states that only 1,485,292 Jews died from all causes during the Second World War, and although this figure is certainly too high, at least it bears no resemblance at all to the legendary Six Million. As has been noted earlier, the Jewish statistician Raul Hilberg estimates an even lower figure of 896,892. This is beginning to approach a realistic figure, and the process of revision is certain to continue.
Doubtless, several thousand Jewish persons did die in the course of the Second World War, but this must be seen in the context of a war that cost many millions of innocent victims on all sides. To put the matter in perspective, for example, we may point out that 700,000 Russian civilians died during the siege of Leningrad, and a total of 2,050,000 German civilians were killed in Allied air raids and forced repatriation after the war. In 1955, another neutral Swiss source, Die Tat of Zurich (January 19th, 1955), in a survey of all Second World War casualties based on figures of the lnternational Red Cross, put the “Loss of victims of persecution because of politics, race or religion who died in prisons and concentration camps between 1939 and 1945” at 300,000, not all of whom were Jews, and this figure seems the most accurate assessment.
While some preliminary conclusions could be drawn about Jewish population statistics, said Weber, it was his opinion that statistical accuracies were not yet possible on the information available. One of the best places for this type of research was the [International Tracing Service] in Arolsen, West Germany, which refused researchers free access to its records. (24-6195)
In Weber’s view, official Jewish estimates had not been “quietly” revised downwards; they had been drastically revised downwards. Lucy Dawidowicz still tried to uphold the 6 million figure, but Raul Hilberg gave a figure of 5.1 million; Gerald Reitlinger gave a figure of 4.2 or 4.5 million. (24-6196)
Weber was familiar with the Swiss daily newspaper Baseler Nachrichten referred to by Harwood. It was a highly respected, liberal newspaper which had been in existence for about 100 years. In the June 13, 1946 edition, under the headline “How High is the Number of Jewish Victims?” the newspaper printed an article which attempted to come to grips with the claim that 5 or 6 million Jews had been killed during the war. The article concluded that less than 1.5 million Jews must preliminarily be considered dead or missing. Weber quoted from it:
One thing is already certain today: The contention that this figure [of Jewish losses during the war] runs up to 5 or 6 million is not true. The number of Jewish victims may vary between 1 and 1.5 million, because a higher number of Jews overall was not “within reach” of Hitler and Himmler. It may be assumed and hoped that the final figure of losses of the Jewish people will be even lower than this figure. But clarification is necessary; this is why an investigation on the part of a special committee of the United Nations should establish the truth, which is so terribly important for the present and for the future.
Weber testified that Harwood’s statement that the World Centre of Contemporary Jewish Documentation in Paris claimed that only 1,485,292 Jews died from all causes in World War II was false. It was also false that Hilberg estimated Jewish losses at 896,892, but Harwood had derived this from Rassinier who had incorrectly interpreted Hilberg’s statistics. The reference to the article in Die Tat of Zurich was accurate as far as it went, said Weber. The article actually referred to the number of persons who died strictly in what were known as concentration camps, which the International Red Cross distinguished from extermination camps. (24-6198, 6201)
Weber approved of Harwood’s statement that Jewish losses must be put in the context of a war that cost many millions of innocent victims on all sides. Generally accepted figures put German civilian dead from Allied air raids at about 500,000 and about 2 million dead from the forced expulsion of some 14 million Germans at the end of the war from areas where they had lived for centuries. There was no question, said Weber, that far more Germans died during the Second World War than Jews. (24-6199, 6200)
Weber turned to the last paragraphs of the booklet:
The question most pertinent to the extermination legend is, of course: how many of the 3 million European Jews under German control survived after 1945? The Jewish Joint Distribution Committee estimated the number of survivors in Europe to be only one and a half million, but such a figure is now totally unacceptable. This is proved by the growing number of Jews claiming compensation from the West German Government for having allegedly suffered between 1939 and 1945. By 1965, the number of these claimants registered with the West German Government had tripled in ten years and reached 3,375,000 (Aufbau, June 30th, 1965). Nothing could be a more devastating proof of the brazen fantasy of the Six Million. Most of these claimants are Jews, so there can be no doubt that the majority of the 3 million Jews who experienced the Nazi occupation of Europe are, in fact, very much alive. It is a resounding confirmation of the fact that Jewish casualties during the Second World War can only be estimated at a figure in thousands. Surely this is enough grief for the Jewish people? Who has the right to compound it with vast imaginary slaughter, marking with eternal shame a great European nation, as well as wringing fraudulent monetary compensation from them?
RICHARD HARWOOD is a writer and specialist in political and diplomatic aspects of the Second World War. At present he is with the University of London. Mr. Harwood turned to the vexed subject of war crimes under the influence of Professor Paul Rassinier, to whose monumental work this little volume is greatly indebted. The author is now working on a sequel in this series on the Main Nuremberg Trial, 1945 -1946.
Weber himself believed that definitive statements about the number of Jewish losses during the war could not be made. “Victims of the Holocaust” were defined to include Jews who died during the war regardless of cause; i.e., included were Jews who died in Allied air raids. When two large shiploads of about 10,000 concentration camp inmates were sunk by British airplanes at the end of the war, these dead were counted as “victims of the Holocaust.” (24-6202, 6203)
Weber agreed with Harwood’s statement that the number of Jews claiming compensation had increased over the years. Today, he said, the total number of claims made by individuals to the West German government for compensation was about 4.2 million. About 80 percent or 3.5 million of these claims were from Jews. This number did not include the large numbers of Jews who had never been allowed to make claims, i.e., those in the Eastern Bloc countries of Poland, Hungary, Romania and the Soviet Union. Further, Jews who died before the programme began in 1953 also never made claims. In Weber’s opinion, it was not inaccurate to say that the reparations claims were not consistent with the Six Million story. (24-6204, 6205)
Weber was referred to the back page of Did Six Million Really Die? written by Ernst Zündel where he wrote that his views were shared by notable experts and historians from around the world, including Professor Faurisson, J.G.Burg, Dr. B. Kautsky, Dr. W. Stäglich, David Irving, David Hoggan, Professor Arthur Butz, Professor A.J. App, Professor Rassinier, Professor Udo Walendy, Thies Christophersen and Ditlieb Felderer. (24-6221)
Weber testified that Professor Robert Faurisson had a doctorate in French literature and had written extensively on the Holocaust issue. Weber considered him to be a very capable and thorough historian. Faurisson did not have strong political views but was something of a liberal. J.G. Burg was the author of several books calling into question the Holocaust story. He himself was Jewish and lived in Munich. Professor Butz was the author of the important revisionist work, The Hoax of the Twentieth Century. David Irving was an English historian whom Weber considered to be remarkably scrupulous. David Hoggan was an American historian whose works Weber had found useful. Weber knew Professor A.J. App when he lived in Washington and also found his works to be useful. (24-6221)
In 1977 Weber sought out the publisher of Did Six Million Really Die? because he wanted to know more about what they were publishing. He had no difficulty finding the publisher in England. Weber was introduced to the author of Did Six Million Really Die? and spoke to him about the booklet. (24-6225)
Weber was familiar with the reports of the Red Cross as they dealt with the concentration camps during the war and the relationship between the Red Cross and the Jewish population in Europe during the war. In Weber’s opinion, the reports were accurate but somewhat biased. An example of bias was the reference in the reports to the “liberation” of the city of Budapest, Hungary by the Soviet forces. The population of Hungary, said Weber, was overwhelmingly anti- Communist and to describe the city of Budapest being taken by the Soviet forces as a “liberation” was a misrepresentation. It was language that reflected the thinking and mentality of the Allies at that period of time. Another example of Red Cross bias was its report on the liberation of Dachau concentration camp in April of 1945. There was no mention in the report of the summary shootings of the German guards by American G.I.’s who captured the camp; it was hard to imagine, said Weber, that the shootings could have escaped the attention of the Red Cross officials who were there at the time. There was no doubt this atrocity took place; it was described in a memoir entitled The Day of the Americans written by a former inmate named Nerin Gun; it was also described in a memoir entitled Dachau: The Hour of the Avenger written by an American officer, Colonel Howard Buechner, who was with the American forces who captured the camp. Weber also found confirmation in official U.S. Army records in the National Archives that the atrocity was carried out by American soldiers and was subsequently suppressed. (24-6227 to 6229)
Weber returned to the subject of the Luther Memorandum (Nuremberg Document NG- 2586), a document he believed to be very important because it laid out in clear language what the German policy during the war was towards the Jews. To Weber, the most relevant portions of the document were often not published or known. The document said: “The present war gives Germany the opportunity and also the duty of solving the Jewish problem in Europe.” This policy was to “promote the evacuation of the Jews from Europe in closest co-operation with the agencies of the Reichsführer SS…” The document also noted that “The number of Jews deported in this way to the east did not suffice to cover the labour needs.” The document also quoted German Foreign Minister Ribbentrop as saying that “At the end of this war, all Jews would have to leave Europe. This was an unalterable decision of the Führer and also the only way to master this problem as only a global comprehensive solution could be applied and individual measures would not help very much.” The memorandum concluded by saying that “The deportations to the east are a further step on the way of the total solution. The deportation to the Polish General Government is a temporary measure. The Jews will be moved on further to the occupied eastern territories as soon as the technical conditions for it are given.” (24 6230)
Weber had done a great deal of study into the Einsatzgruppen reports and translated large portions not previously made public. The Einsatzgruppen report of September 12, 1942, [No. 81, p. 14], showed that the goal of the German security units was not to kill as many Jews as possible. It showed in fact that they were glad when they did not have to deal with the large numbers of Jews who fled into the Soviet Union. The report showed that the term “solution to the Jewish question in Europe” meant that the Jews were simply to be gotten out of Europe. Weber read from the report:
During the first weeks considerable numbers of Jews fell under our control, whereas in the central and eastern Ukrainian districts it has been observed that in many cases 70 to 90 percent, and sometimes 100 percent, of the Jewish population has fled. This can be seen as an indirect result of the work of the Security Police, since the removal at no cost of hundreds of thousands of Jews — most of them reportedly to beyond the Urals — represents a considerable contribution to the solution of the Jewish question in Europe.
Weber referred next to the CIA booklet containing aerial photographs of Auschwitz. Weber testified that the two CIA officials who wrote the text of the booklet were not historians and relied entirely on secondary sources in concluding that an extermination took place at Auschwitz. What was significant was that the aerial photographs themselves did not give any evidence to support the extermination story and tended, in fact, to discredit the story. (24-6233, 6234)
In Weber’s opinion, Did Six Million Really Die? did not purport to be a serious or scholarly work of history. It was based on secondary sources such as the books of Paul Rassinier; it was a polemical account designed to convince people. It did not purport to be a work that could be held up to the same standards of rigid scrutiny that a scholarly work by a historian normally would be. A critical reader, who understood it was written on the basis of secondary sources, would be alerted to the fact that if he wanted to evaluate its absolute accuracy he would have to go to the primary sources. In Weber’s opinion, Did Six Million Really Die?’s main value lay in encouraging further thought, discussion and debate on the subject it raised. (24 6235 to 6237)
Weber pointed out that The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William Shirer, which had been through numerous editions and was considered a standard work, contained many errors of historical fact. For example, the book claimed that Hermann Göring and the top officials around Hitler carried out the burning of the Reichstag building in 1933, a claim which was now acknowledged by historians to be untrue. In Weber’s opinion, Shirer was more responsible for these errors precisely because the book purported to be a scholarly work based on primary sources. (24-6237)
Historians very often made mistakes, sometimes in good faith and sometimes not, but one did not hold the writing of someone held out to be a scholar to the same standard that one held a popular or polemic or journalistic work. The standard was established by the author himself and the publisher of the book. When a work claimed to be a comprehensive or definitive work on a subject, then the author himself and the publishers were establishing the standard. Thirdly, there was an implicit standard of reliability when a book was written by a well-known author and was a lengthy treatment. Such a book was held to a different standard than that of a historical work by someone who was not well-known or a work which was polemical or journalistic. (24-6238)
More comparable to Did Six Million Really Die?, said Weber, were two booklets published on the same subject by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith in New York City. The first, entitled Anatomy of Nazism was a polemical work which did not cite original sources and contained demonstrable errors of fact. For example, the booklet contained photographs with the caption “Nazism: Two monuments are now empty gas chambers and crematoria at Dachau and Buchenwald.” No historian today claimed there were gassings at these camps. The booklet further claimed that “large quantities of soap were manufactured from the corpses of those murdered.” Again, said Weber, no historian today made such claims. 10
Weber concluded his examination-in-chief by stating that Harwood’s conclusions in Did Six Million Really Die? were not unreasonable, and were reasonable if one accepted the secondary evidence that the author had relied upon. (24-6243)
Crown Attorney John Pearson commenced his cross-examination of Weber. Weber testified that he agreed with the main thesis of the booklet which was laid out in the first paragraph. In his opinion, however, the booklet contained misleading and false statements of fact. Weber agreed that with at least some citations in the booklet, the errors would be disclosed simply by looking up the references. (24-6244, 6245)
Pearson turned to Did Six Million Really Die? and read from page 9:
So far as is known, the first accusation against the Germans of the mass murder of Jews in war- time Europe was made by the Polish Jew Rafael Lemkin in his book Axis Rule in Occupied Europe, published in New York in 1943…His book claimed that the Nazis had destroyed millions of Jews, perhaps as many as six millions.
Pearson produced Exhibit 48 in the trial, Axis Rule in Occupied Europe, and asked Weber to confirm that the book was actually published in 1944, not 1943 as Harwood had stated. Weber confirmed that the title page of the book listed 1944 as the date of publication but pointed out that it did not make clear whether it was the first edition or not. (24-6247) Pearson turned to page 88 of the Lemkin book and read to the court:
The technique of mass killings is employed mainly against Poles, Russians, and Jews, as well as against leading personalities from among the non-collaborationist groups in all the occupied countries. In Poland, Bohemia-Moravia, and Slovenia, the intellectuals are being “liquidated” because they have always been considered as the main bearers of national ideals and at the time of occupation they were especially suspected of being the organizers of resistance. The Jews for the most part are liquidated within the ghettos or in special trains in which they are transported to a so-called “unknown” destination. The number of Jews who have been killed by organized murder in all the occupied countries, according to the Institute of Jewish Affairs of the American Jewish Congress in New York amounts to 1,702,500. (See the Joint Declaration by members of the United Nations issued simultaneously in Washington and in London, on December 17, 1942… )
Weber agreed that Lemkin did not claim that 6 million Jews had been destroyed as Harwood had stated. Weber pointed out that it was important to realize that Harwood relied on the works of Paul Rassinier; the original error was made by Rassinier and repeated by Harwood. He agreed, however, that Harwood had made no reference to Rassinier at that point in the booklet. (24-6249)
As to Harwood’s claim that Lemkin was the first to accuse the Germans of mass murder of the Jews, Weber agreed that the Lemkin book specifically referred to the Joint Declaration and to statistics of the Institute of Jewish Affairs. He agreed that those who were well-informed on the subject knew that the Allied governments claimed there was an extermination of the Jews taking place in 1942. It was certainly not a secret, said Weber, and the Allied governments made quite a lot of it at the time. He agreed that one did not need to be an expert to know about the Joint Declaration of 1942. (24-6250, 6251)
Weber did not agree, however, with Pearson’s suggestion that Harwood had stated deliberate falsehoods with respect to Lemkin. Weber knew the author, Richard Verrall, was given a small amount of money to quickly produce Did Six Million Really Die? as a journalistic venture. Verrall did not know and did not expect, as those who asked him to make the booklet did not expect, that the booklet would have anywhere near the impact that it had. Richard Verrall was not a specialist in history. He relied on secondary sources and produced the booklet very quickly. Weber knew Verrall and believed he did not maliciously or willfully make false statements of fact in the booklet. He wrote what he believed to be the truth at the time. Weber knew Verrall was very glad to have errors pointed out in the booklet. He wanted errors corrected in subsequent editions and in some cases they in fact had been corrected. (24-6252, 6253)
Pearson turned to the last page of Did Six Million Really Die?:
RICHARD HARWOOD is a writer and specialist in political and diplomatic aspects of the Second World War. At present he is with the University of London.
Pearson suggested that this was a false statement. Weber disagreed, testifying that Verrall had simply used the name “Harwood”; but Verrall was a writer and he had a specialized interest in political and diplomatic aspects of the Second World War. He was a graduate of the University of London with high honours. (24-6254, 6255)
Pearson asked if Weber held Paul Rassinier to the standard of a historian. Weber testified that Rassinier was the most important revisionist historian up to the time of the publication of Did Six Million Really Die?. Both Rassinier and the booklet represented an early stage in revisionist historiography. Weber himself had been disturbed by Rassinier’s errors of fact and accepted nothing of what he wrote except when he was talking in the first person perhaps and unless Weber checked the source himself. He did not agree with Pearson’s suggestion that Rassinier deliberately falsified what Lemkin wrote. Rassinier was sick after the war and unable to resume his teaching career. He did not have a doctorate in history. While some might hold Rassinier’s work to a very high standard, Weber personally did not. (24 6256 to 6258)
In Weber’s opinion, the Lemkin error was not a substantive or malicious error as it was not essential to Rassinier’s argument. If he had said that the first claims of extermination were made in 1942 rather than 1943 it would not have detracted from his essential point. Rassinier may have relied on a newspaper account about Lemkin’s book and picked up the error there. The kind of errors that Rassinier commonly made were not of a substantial nature. He would, for example, get exact titles incorrect or make mistakes about dates of a minor nature. It simply showed he was not the most meticulous writer. (24-6258)
Weber testified that a reasonable and competent historian would check a source before quoting it. He reiterated, however, that Rassinier might have tried to check his source and been unable to do so; he may have relied on a secondary source that was inaccurate. Rassinier was in France and Axis Rule in Occupied Europe was published in the United States. Weber believed historians had an obligation to check original sources whenever they could and was sorry that Rassinier was not a careful historian in some cases. However, the great value of Rassinier’s work lay mostly in what he himself reported about his own personal experiences in Buchenwald and in Dora concentration camps. What he wrote of beyond his personal experiences had to be checked, but that was true of all historical writing. (24-6260, 6261)
Rassinier began his investigation of this subject because he was so struck by the fact that what was being said in the media in France after the war was directly contrary to his own personal experience in Buchenwald and Dora. His first book discussed his experiences in those camps. He did not draw any sweeping conclusions. Weber pointed out that there were many other former inmates who didn’t hesitate to draw very sweeping conclusions even though all they really knew was what they had seen in a particular camp. (24-6263)
Rassinier concluded, on the basis of his research, that about 1.2 million Jews died during the Second World War from a variety of causes. He took issue with the thesis that 5 or 6 million Jews were exterminated as part of an official German policy. (24 6264)
Weber pointed out that although Did Six Million Really Die? was journalistic, Verrall had provided sources for much of what he wrote. That implied an invitation to the reader to check those sources. The booklet which Weber had referred to earlier by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith did not give any sources to support its statements. Oftentimes, claims were made in newspapers and magazines without any sources whatsoever being provided. (24-6265)
Pearson suggested to Weber that it was part of the central thesis of Did Six Million Really Die? that the Holocaust was a post-war invention. Weber disagreed, pointing out that the very passage about Lemkin which Pearson quoted said that the first extermination claims were made in 1943, that was, during the war. (24-6266)
Weber did not know if Verrall checked the accuracy of what Rassinier said by checking Lemkin’s book. Weber believed he should have, but didn’t. From Weber’s conversations with Verrall, the author felt he was under a deadline and had to write the essay quickly; this was what Verrall was really concerned about. When a writer put forth a thesis which was at variance with a generally-accepted view, Weber believed the writer should be more careful than usual because he had a greater burden of proof and had to contend with a much greater level of disbelief among his potential readers. (24-6267)
Pearson suggested again that anyone who was reasonably well-read in the area would know about the Joint Allied Declaration. Weber replied that if Pearson went into some other courtroom in the building he wouldn’t find a single person who knew about the Allied Declaration of 1942 even though many of those people were reasonably well-read. This applied now or in 1976. In Weber’s opinion, there were many persons in Canada with doctorates in history, even in modern European history, who were not aware of the Allied Declaration. Verrall had a specialized interest in the political and diplomatic aspects of the Second World War. He did not claim to be a specialist or an expert on the history of the Jews in Europe in the Second World War. (24-6268 to 6270)
Pearson suggested that before publishing a book for public consumption, a reasonable and competent publisher would check out the sources cited in a book to ensure they were referred to accurately. Weber thought a publisher should but often did not. Even major publishers did not; William Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich was an example. Weber agreed it shouldn’t have been too difficult to check up on the Lemkin book in North America, but indicated that publishers normally assumed the good faith and accuracy of their writers. Weber cited as a further example of this publishing practice, the so-called Howard Hughes hoax where a man wrote a book which purported to be the authorized biography of Hughes. The publisher published the book in good faith, thinking it was accurate. The whole thing, however, was an enormous hoax. The publisher should have checked the book, said Weber, but it didn’t. It accepted the word of the author. That was normally the case because publishers were in the business of publishing; they didn’t have the time or the inclination to go checking up on the accuracy of everything that was written by their writers. Weber pointed out that Zündel, the publisher of Did Six Million Really Die?, had made it clear that he accepted the essential thesis of the booklet based not merely on the say-so of Harwood but also on the authority of others whom he had taken the time to list. (24-6270 to 6273)
Pearson put to Weber that in his previous testimony he said that between 200,000 and 800,000 Jews were killed by the Einsatzgruppen. Weber testified that this was an estimate that he did not want to be held strictly to account for because of the difficulty in the figures. He would qualify this estimate by saying that it would be an estimate not of Jews killed by the Einsatzgruppen, but rather of Jews killed in the Soviet territories during the war. It would therefore include Jews who were killed by Poles, Latvians, Lithuanians and Ukrainians in pogroms which took place on a widespread scale as the Germans invaded in 1941. The deaths of those Jews were commonly attributed to the Germans. Weber disagreed with Harwood’s conclusion on page 14 of the booklet that 100,000 people were killed by the Einsatzgruppen. Weber himself believed that a minimum of perhaps 200,000 Jews were killed in the Soviet territories by both the Einsatzgruppen and others. (24-6273 to 6276)
The policy of the Einsatzgruppen was not to kill Jews simply because they were Jews, said Weber. They were shot for security reasons, reprisals, being found outside the ghetto for unauthorized reasons and so on. This was comparable to the so-called “free fire zones” established during the Vietnam War in which anyone alive was subject to being killed. This didn’t mean the American government had a policy of exterminating the Vietnamese people. (24-6276 to 6278)
Weber agreed that in the Einsatzgruppen reports there was often a distinction made between partisans and Jews. Sometimes Jews were listed separately as a sub-group of partisans or partisan helpers. He agreed that the numbers of Jews reported shot far exceeded the number of partisans reported shot but he believed these numbers were exaggerated to curry favour with superiors. The shooting of Jews was considered good precisely because it was considered a help to security. As Raul Hilberg pointed out in his book, Jews were not shot whenever there was not a security or reprisal reason to shoot them. (24-6284, 6285)
Weber agreed that Ohlendorf had a very good reason at his own trial to try to minimize the activities of the Einsatzgruppen. Pearson produced volume 4 of the Nuremberg Military Tribunal “Green Series” in which the testimony of Ohlendorf at his own trial was reproduced. Pearson read from page 269, where Ohlendorf was being cross-examined by the prosecutor:
MR. HEATH: Mr. Ohlendorf, to speed this examination I’d like to attempt to agree with you upon one or two points. First, we shall not quarrel about numbers. You have indicated that Einsatzgruppe D under your command slaughtered something less than 90,000 human beings. I understood you to suggest to the Court that this figure is exaggerated although it appears in an affidavit which you have given. I ask you now to give the Court the best estimate you possibly can of the minimum number of human beings who were killed under your command by Einsatzgruppe D.
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: In my direct examination I have already said that I cannot give any definite figure, and that even the testimony in my affidavit shows that in reality I could not name any figure. Therefore, I have named a figure which has been reported “approximately”. The knowledge which I have gained by this day through the documents and which I have gained through conversations with my men, make me reserve the right to name any figure and strengthen this reservation. Therefore, I am not in a position to give you a minimum figure, either. In my direct examination I have said that the numbers which appear in the documents are at least exaggerated by one-half, but I must repeat that I never knew any definite figure and, therefore, cannot give you any such figure.
Q. You cannot give us a minimum figure?
A. If the prosecution wishes I am, of course, prepared to give my reasons why I cannot give any figure.
Q. Well, let me ask you — perhaps I can help you * * * . In any event, I can indicate to the Court one reason why you might have doubts about the numbers. In 1943 the Reich Leader SS, Himmler addressed the SS major generals at Poznan. You are aware of that speech, are you not?
A. Yes, I have heard it myself.
Q. Perhaps you recall his complaint; I will read it to you —
“I come now to a fourth virtue, which is very rare in Germany — truthfulness. One of the greatest evils which has spread during the war is the lack of truthfulness in messages, reports, and statements, which subordinate departments in civil life, in the State, the Party and the services sent in to the departments over them.”
Of course, that was in 1943. Did you exaggerate the reports which you sent to the Reich Security Main Office?
A. I certainly did not on my own initiative, but I had to rely on those things which were reported to me, and I know that double countings could not be avoided, and I also know that wrong numbers were reported to me. I have tried to avoid passing on such double countings or wrong statements, because the individual Kommandos did not know the figures of the neighbor units; nevertheless the reporting of wrong figures was not prevented — and especially the reporting of strange figures as for instance, the report from Chernovitsy. Here those figures are named for which the Rumanians in Chernovitsy were responsible.
Q. Will you tell the Court what bookkeeping and record-making system was maintained in Einsatzgruppe D to keep track of the people slaughtered?
A. In Einsatzgruppe D the various reports were received which were sent from the Kommandos to the Einsatzgruppe, and these reports were gone over and the figures contained in them were sent to the Reich Security Main Office.
Q. Well, it is quite obvious that that is what happened. But tell us now who reported for Einsatzkommando 12, say, during the first six months of its operations, the killings by Einsatzkommando 12, to you?
A. Einsatzkommando 12 itself.
Q. And who was the man who reported to you?
A. They were usually signed by the Einsatzkommando chief himself, in this case by the then SS Major [Sturmbannführer] Nosske.
Q. Very well, you relied on Nosske for truthful reporting of the numbers killed by his unit?
A. I had no possibility to examine these executions because Nosske, was sometimes 200 or 250 kilometers away from me.
Q. Witness, I don’t mean to cut you off, but I think if I ask you now to attempt to make your answers as responsive as possible, I shall attempt to make my questions as explicit as possible — and I believe we both shall benefit. So, I ask you again — not why you did not check up on Nosske, but simply the question — Did you rely on Nosske for truthful reports of the slaughters committed by Einsatzkommando 12?
A. I didn’t understand the last part of the question.
Q. Did you rely on Nosske for truthful reports of the numbers of persons slaughtered by Einsatzkommando 12 while it was under his command?
A. I was of the opinion that these reports were truthful. In the case of Nosske, however, in one case it was brought to my attention that the report was not truthful. But that was at a relatively early stage of Nikolaev.
We found out that in this case Nosske reported figures which were not killed by his Kommando but by a strange unit.
Q. Then in one instance at least, you did find your subordinate exaggerating the number killed by his unit?
Q. Do you recall any other exaggerations by any other men in the unit under you?
A. Yes, for example, in the case of 10a.
Q. Yes. Do you recall an exaggeration in the case of 10a?
A. Yes. In the case of 10a.
Q. Any other Einsatzkommando do you recall exaggerating figures?
A. Not from my part, no.
Q. So within the limits of memory and the situation you find yourself in today, it should be possible for you to give us a minimum figure based on the reports of the men who were under you, should it not?
A. I can only repeat what I already have been saying for two and one-half years that to the best of my knowledge, about ninety thousand people were reported by my Einsatzkommandos. How many of those were actually killed I do not know and I cannot really say.
Q. Very well, we will leave this after one more question. This figure ninety thousand is the best estimate you can give at this moment. I take it we must continue to read that with the qualification that you gave in direct testimony, that you think there is a great deal of exaggeration in it?
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Mr. Heath, I do not understand the witness to say that he regarded the figure ninety thousand to be an exaggeration. He states, and he stated not only here but before the International Military Tribunal, that his estimate of the number killed by the Einsatzgruppe D during the time he was in charge was ninety thousand, and he comes to that conclusion from the reports and that is what I understand he says today.
MR. HEATH: I agree with your Honor. I had understood him to say that in the transcript his testimony was — go ahead.
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: I am not quite in agreement with this answer, your Honor, insofar as I said that the number ninety thousand was reported as having been killed. But I cannot really say whether that number had been actually killed and certainly not that they were killed by the Einsatzgruppen, because, apart from exaggerations, I also knew definitely that the Einsatzkommando reported the killings which were carried out by other units. Therefore, I could only repeat that ninety thousand were reported.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Witness, you may perhaps not agree to what I have stated, but you will have to agree to what you stated yourself on 3 January 1946; you were asked: “Do you know how many persons were liquidated by the Einsatzgruppe D under your direction?” And you answered: “In the year between June 1941 and June 1942 the Einsatzkommandos reported ninety thousand people liquidated.”
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: Yes.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Question: “That included men, women and children?” Answer: “Yes.” Question: “On what do you base these figures?” Answer: “On reports sent by the Einsatzkommandos to the Einsatzgruppen.” Question: “Were those reports submitted to you?” Answer: “Yes.”
MR. HEATH: Your Honor, please, if I may interrupt? I think I can clear up the difficulty. I have the advantage of having the transcript of his testimony before me.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Yes.
MR. HEATH: I don’t know that your Honor has had the opportunity to see it.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: No. I have not.
MR. HEATH: He did make this statement with respect to the affidavit which you just read.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: It is not the affidavit. This is testimony put to him in Court.
MR. HEATH: We can follow this up in the witness’ testimony in direct examination. Witness, this is from your testimony of last week. You said: “If, of course, the figure of ninety thousand was named by me, I always added that in this fifteen to twenty percent are double countings, that is, on the basis of my own experience. I do not know any longer how I could have remembered the number of just ninety thousand, because I did not keep a register of these figures. The ‘approximately’ must have meant that I was not certain. It is evident that I mentioned this number of ninety thousand by adding a number of other figures. I do not mention this in order to excuse myself, as I am perfectly convinced that it does not matter from the actual fact whether it was forty thousand or ninety thousand. I mention this for the reason that in the situation in which we are today, politically speaking, figures are being dealt with in an irresponsible manner.” That is the qualification that I had referred to.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: But that still does not in any way take away from what he said on 3 January 1946.
MR. HEATH: I agree, sir, with you.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: That is the testimony of that day, and it still stands now as he gives this explanation and the Tribunal sees no difference between what he said then and what he said today, namely, that this estimate of ninety thousand is based upon the report which he personally saw.
MR. HEATH: Alright, sir.
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: With what was just read by the presiding judge of my affidavit of 3 January 1946 I agree completely.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Yes.
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: Anything else which I have said on direct examination is merely a commentary to the testimony of 3 January 1946.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Very well.
MR. HEATH: Very well, sir. Mr. Ohlendorf, I had begun to ask you about the Karaims [Karaites] and the Krimchaks, I think you called them. I understood that you were confronted in the south of Russia with the question further to slaughter Krimchaks. Krimchaks I understood were human beings who had come by way of Italy to Russia, and they had Jewish blood. The directive which you got from Berlin was to kill the Krimchaks, is that correct?
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: Yes.
Q. Now, I cannot pronounce it correctly, the Karaims were another sect whom you encountered in the south of Russia, and this sect had no Jewish blood, but it did share the religious confessions of the Jews. Is that right?
Q. You submitted to Berlin the question whether the Karaims should be killed, and I understood you to say that the order you got from Berlin was you shall not kill them for they have nothing in common with the Jews except the confession?
Q. Now during your direct examination you told this Court that you had no idea, and that you have no cause today to think that there was any plan to exterminate the Jewish race in existence, nor that you had any information of putting it into effect. Is that right?
Q. Will you explain to the Court, please, what difference there was between the Karaims and the Krimchaks, except Jewish blood?
A. I understand your question completely in reference to the eastern Jews, in the case of the Jews who were found in the eastern campaign. These Jews were to be killed — according to the order — for the reason that they were considered carriers of bolshevism, and, therefore, considered as endangering the security of the German Reich. This concerned the Jews who were found in Russia, and it was not known to me that the Jews in all of Europe were being killed, but on the contrary I knew that down to my dismissal these Jews were not killed, but it was attempted at all costs to get them to emigrate. The fact that the Karaims were not killed showed that the charge of the prosecution that persons were persecuted for their religion is not correct, for the Karaims had that Jewish religion, but they could not be killed because they did not belong to the Jewish race.
Q. I think, Witness, you answered exactly what I had anticipated in the last sentence, “They did not belong to the Jewish Race,” is that right?
A. Yes, that is right.
Q. They were found in Russia?
Q. But they participated in the Jewish confession in Russia?
A. The Karaims had the Jewish faith, yes.
Q. But your race authorities in Berlin could find no trace of Jewish blood in them?
Q. So they came absolutely under the Führer Decree or the Streckenbach Order to kill all Jews?
Q. Because of blood?
A. Because they were of Jewish origin. For you must understand the Nazi ideology, as you call it. It was the opinion of the Führer that in Russia and in bolshevism, the representatives of this blood showed themselves especially suitable for this idea, therefore, the carriers of this blood became especially suitable representatives of the bolshevism. That is not on account of their faith, or their religion, but because of their human make-up and character.
Q. And because of their blood, right?
A. I cannot express it any more definitely than I stated, from their nature and their characteristics. Their blood, of course, has something to do with it, according to National Socialist ideology.
Q. Let’s see, if I can understand it; we’ve got a lot of time, I hope. What was the distinction except blood?
A. Between whom?
Q. Between the Karaims and the Krimchaks?
A. The difference of the blood, yes.
Q. Only the difference in blood, is that so?
Q. So the criterion and the test which you applied in your slaughter was blood?
A. The criteria which I used were the orders which I got, and it has not been doubted during the entire trial, that in this Führer Order the Jews were designated as the ones who belonged to that circle in Russia and who were to be killed.
Q. Very well, Witness, let’s not quibble. Let’s come back again. What you followed was the Führer Order. Now, I leave you out of it for a moment, your own idea of what should be killed and what should not be killed.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: I disagree with you, Mr. Heath, that the witness has quibbled. I think he has stated very clearly that his orders were to kill all Jews, that was the criterion which he followed. If he was a Jew he was killed, if he was not a Jew then they might figure some other reason to kill him but he wouldn’t be killed because he was a Jew.
MR. HEATH: Yes, Your Honor, I am attempting to get him to say the word blood and not the word Jews. That is the reason I was saying he is quibbling, but I am perfectly happy to leave it where it is.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: I think he has been rather forthright.
MR. HEATH: Very well. Let’s see, Mr. Ohlendorf, let’s go for a moment to this order which you got at Pretzsch in the spring of 1941. Did you have any knowledge whatever of the purposes of the Einsatzgruppen before you went to Pretzsch?
A. We merely knew that the Einsatzgruppen were to be set up.
Q — But you did not know what they were to do?
A. No. Apart from the fact that one has a definite idea about missions in which people of the Security Police and the SD were assigned. That is, of course, true.
Q. Did you, at that time, have any idea that the mission of the security police would be to slaughter Jews and gypsies?
A. I could no longer say today that I had such an idea, but I don’t believe so. In my opinion the order about the killing of the Jews was made known to me for the first time in Pretzsch, that is, for the Russian campaign.
Q. If you had known that that was going to be the purpose of the Einsatzgruppen to kill all Jews and gypsies and certain other categories, you would remember it today — would you not, Mr. Ohlendorf?
A. I can no longer say.
Pearson turned to page 283 of the Ohlendorf cross-examination and continued reading:
Q. Well, you went to Poland with Himmler in 1940?
Q. 1939. All right. And Heydrich sent you along with Himmler, you say? Disputes arose between you and Himmler in 1939?
A. They really were monologues because Himmler —
Q. That’s all right, whether it was monologue or not. He reproached you that members of the SD in Poland had not been able to treat the Jews in a manner in which he had wanted, and that, you say “was a product of my education”. What was it he wanted done to the Jews in Poland which he said you had failed to do?
A. That is connected with the actions about which I have answered to the prosecutor on his previous questions. It was in the same city where differences between Streckenbach and Himmler occurred. It concerned the same actions.
Q. You mean the actions under a Führer Order, an order similar to the order which controlled you in Russia?
A. Yes. During the direct examination I already answered the questions by the presiding judge, and today I answered your questions, that the contents were not the same, but a directive which was only given once concerning certain definite single actions.
Q. Tell us how orders that you operated under in 1941 in Russia differed from the order which controlled killing of Jews in Poland in 1939?
A. In Poland individual actions had been ordered, while in Russia, during the entire time of the commitment, the killing of all Jews had been ordered. Special actions in Poland had been ordered, whose contents I do not know in detail.
Weber explained that in giving this testimony, Otto Ohlendorf was desperately trying to save his life. The statements he made were a repudiation of part of his Nuremberg testimony. For example, he said that the figures in the Einsatzgruppen reports were exaggerated by at least half. That was not what he said in the main Nuremberg trial, where he also claimed there was a policy to exterminate all the Jews. (24-6306)
Otto Ohlendorf had to make statements in his own trial which did not vary too extremely from his statements at Nuremberg or else he would have been completely unbelievable. His reference to the so-called “Führer Order” was an attempt to justify his actions. No one had ever been able to find any evidence of such a “Führer Order.” Weber pointed out that even Raul Hilberg no longer claimed that this “Führer Order” actually ever existed. (24-6306, 6308)
On page 252 of this same Nuremberg volume, said Weber, Ohlendorf testified that the Einsatzgruppen never had the task of eliminating groups of the population because they were racially inferior. He said they were never trained for such actions. (24-6307)
Ohlendorf’s testimony had to be looked at in the context of what his motives were. It was known from existing orders what the tasks of the Einsatzgruppen were; it was also known that after the Einsatzgruppen’s operations in Russia were finished, there were still large numbers of Jews living there. In Weber’s opinion, if there had been orders by Hitler to exterminate them all, then they would have been exterminated. In actual fact, the Germans evacuated large numbers of Jews from former occupied Soviet territory back to Germany at the end of the war. Weber believed Ohlendorf’s testimony was a fraud. (24-6307)
March 25, 1988
Crown Attorney Pearson resumed his cross-examination by referring Weber to page 5 of Did Six Million Really Die?:
The aim in the following pages is quite simply to tell the Truth. The distinguished American historian Harry Elmer Barnes once wrote that “An attempt to make a competent, objective and truthful investigation of the extermination question…is surely the most precarious venture that an historian or demographer could undertake today.” In attempting this precarious task, it is hoped to make some contribution, not only to historical truth, but towards lifting the burden of a Lie from our own shoulders, so that we may freely confront the dangers which threaten us all. Richard E. Harwood.
Weber agreed that Richard Verrall, using the name “Harwood,” did not tell his readers in that paragraph that he did not have the time or inclination to check out the sources. Weber characterized the paragraph as being rhetorical. (24-6316)
Pearson suggested that Verrall’s claim that he was writing a competent, objective and truthful investigation was false. Weber replied that the booklet was a polemic; it was argumentative and journalistic. It was presenting the case for one point of view. In Weber’s opinion, Hilberg’s book was not objective even though it took account of much more evidence. He agreed, however, that the booklet was not completely competent and not completely truthful. Verrall had set up a high standard in the paragraph which the booklet, by its very nature and short length, was not able to meet. (24-6316 to 6319)
Pearson suggested that it was false to say that Lemkin said “X” when in fact the author didn’t know what Lemkin said because he hadn’t checked it out. Weber replied that this was sloppiness. The mistake was not of a deceitful nature because it was not a mistake that called the main thesis of the booklet into question. Verrall relied on a second-hand source, Rassinier. It was not known why Rassinier made the mistake. He may have been relying on still another source which he considered competent and was unable to check out. This happened often in history writing or in journalistic writing. One of the most dramatic examples was the case of Newsweek, one of the most important and influential magazines in North America, which launched a press campaign about the so-called “secret diaries” of Adolf Hitler. Newsweek had enormous financial and human resources to check out the authenticity of the purported diary but they didn’t do it. A competent examination would have revealed the diary to be a hoax. Weber regretted this kind of sloppiness, and believed that in the case of Newsweek it was a much more culpable sloppiness. Newsweek had the resources to make those kinds of investigations and it purported to be a much more reliable and authoritative publication than Richard Verrall’s. (24 6320 to 6322)
Weber agreed with Pearson that the reader was misled by a work which indicated that the sources relied upon said one thing when in fact they said exactly the opposite. Whether it was serious or not depended upon the publication. A reader who bought the National Enquirer didn’t normally expect the same level of truthfulness and accuracy that he expected to find in the Globe and Mail. If he did, he was a fool. Weber expected a higher standard of reliability from Did Six Million Really Die? than from the National Enquirer. He pointed out that the errors made in the pamphlet did not say “exactly the opposite” of their sources, as suggested by Pearson. The errors that did exist were almost always insubstantial errors; usually very minor errors, like whether Lemkin was the first to make the extermination allegation or whether a few months earlier the Allied governments were the first to present the extermination story. (24-6323 to 6325)
When he first began investigating the Holocaust story, Weber felt that it might not be true. It was perhaps a year before he came to feel that the story was essentially not true. He had been very interested in knowing what the evidence was on both sides and was quite content to accept whatever the truth was. With respect to the Einsatzgruppen, Weber now believed there was no German policy to exterminate the Jews of Russia simply because they were Jews. (24-6328 to 6330)
Pearson returned to the cross-examination of Otto Ohlendorf, the former commander of Einsatzgruppe D, at his trial and read from page 278 of the NMT volumes:
Q. Heydrich, of course, knew at that time what the Einsatzgruppen were to do in Russia?
A. I don’t know.
Q. I beg your pardon?
A. I don’t know whether he did.
Q. Is it your idea that he organized these units without having any idea of what they were to do?
A. He had an idea, all right, for he wanted to take every security job away from the army, whereas, up to that time he had detailed personnel to the army, and the army worked without letting him in on this work; therefore, he expanded his domination to include the operational areas.
Q. This was a very secret preparation, was it not, of the Einsatzgruppen?
A. Yes, of course, these were negotiations between Heydrich and the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces and the High Command of the Army, and representatives of Heydrich and of these two agencies.
Q. Well, then, it is a fair assumption that when Heydrich selected you to go to Russia in command, he knew what work you were going to perform in Russia, did he not?
A. Whether he already had the Führer Order I don’t know. I only knew the fact that the Einsatzgruppen were being set up.
Q. Now at Pretzsch, Streckenbach told you, for the first time, you say, what the Einsatzgruppen were to do?
Q. Now he had a special order?
Q. In your direct examination you stated that the order read “as follows”. Did you see the order yourself?
A. No, I did not say, it read “as follows”. I merely gave the contents, for I always said there was no written order.
Q. I misunderstood you; the transcript said, “Read as follows.” So your understanding of the purposes of the Einsatzgruppen came from Streckenbach orally at Pretzsch?
A. Yes. That is correct.
Q. And you protested?
A. Not only myself, but as I said in direct examination, there was a general protest.
Pearson indicated that Ohlendorf went on to say that the Einsatzgruppen commanders were concerned that the soldiers under their authority would not want to participate in the killing of defenceless civilians. (24-6333)
Pearson continued reading from page 283:
Q. You have told the Court that the army was perfectly aware of this decree, or this order to kill, and that it had the obligation also to execute the order within its ability? Is that right?
A. Yes, but I do not know that in this order insane persons were mentioned; but I would have considered the insane persons just like anybody else because they would have come under the order if they, owing to their condition, would have endangered security — but not only because they were insane — for that reason I rejected this request.
Q. You don’t mean to say that the persons you killed had to endanger security in order to be killed, do you?
A. In the sense of the Führer Order, yes.
Q. Well, let’s not say about the sense of the Führer Order. Let’s talk about reality. Did the people you killed in fact endanger security in any conceivable way?
A. Even if you don’t want to discuss the Führer Order it cannot be explained in any other way. There were two different categories; one, where those people who, through the Führer Order, were considered to endanger the security were concerned and, therefore, had to be killed. The others, namely, the active Communists or other people were people whose endangering of security was established by us and they were only killed if they actually seemed to endanger the security.
Q. Very well. I repeat my question. Apart from the Führer Order, and not because the Führer Order assumed that every man of Jewish blood endangered the security of the Wehrmacht, but from your own experience in Russia, from your own objective witnessing of the situation in Russia, did every Jew in Russia that you killed in fact endanger security, in your judgment?
A. I cannot talk about this without mentioning the Führer Order because this Führer Order did not only try to fight temporary danger, but also danger which might arise in the future.
Q. Well, let us get back to it immediately, and let us see if we can’t talk about it without the Führer Order. I ask you the simple question ***. From your own objective view of the situation in Russia, did the Jews whom you killed, and the gypsies, endanger the security of the German army in any way?
A. I did not examine that in detail. I only know that many of the Jews who were killed actually endangered the security by their conduct, because they were members of the partisan groups for example, or supported the partisans in some way, or sheltered agents, etc.
Q. Let’s put the partisans or those who were aiding the partisans completely aside.
A. I will assist you, Mr. Prosecutor. Of course, at a certain time there were persons of whom one could not have said at that moment that they were an immediate danger, but that does not change the fact that for us it meant a danger insofar as they were determined to be a danger, and none of us examined whether these persons at the moment, or in the future, would actually constitute danger, because this was outside our knowledge, and not part of our task.
Q. Very well. You did not do it then because it was outside of your task. I want you to do it today for this Tribunal. Will you tell us then whether in your objective judgment, apart from the Führer’s Decree, all of the Jews that you killed constituted any conceivable threat to the German Wehrmacht [armed forces].
A. For me, during my time in Russia there is no condition which is not connected with the Führer Order. Therefore, I cannot give you this answer which you would like to have.
Q. You refuse to make the distinction, which any person can easily make — you need not answer that. Let me make it clear then, in the Crimea — no, I believe near Nikolaev, Himmler came to see you in the spring of 1942, did he not, or fall of 1941?
A. Beginning of October 1941.
Q. You had then been working in that area a considerable number of Jewish farmers, is that right, and you had determined not to put them to death?
Q. You made a determination then that those men did not then constitute any security threat whatever to the German armed forces?
A. No; I did not make such a determination but, in the interest of the general situation, and of the army, I considered it more correct not to kill these Jews because the contrary would be achieved by this, namely, in the economic system of this country everything would be upset, which would have its effect on the operation of the Wehrmacht as well.
Q. Then, I ask you the question again. Because these people were farmers, you concluded that it was wiser to get the grain they produced, than to put them to death?
A. Also because of the danger that they might shelter partisans, yes; I was conscious of this danger.
Q. What danger, that they might shelter partisans in their houses?
A. That these Jews might have contact with the partisans.
Q. So the only threat you saw to security was the possibility that the Jews would conceal partisans in their houses?
A. No; I only named this as an example. There might have been agents against us who could endanger us in every way. I only mentioned this as an example.
Q. The same situation would exist in the case of the Krimchaks, wouldn’t it, or what do you call them, Karaims.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Mr. Heath, I must confess a confusion here. I understand the witness to say, or perhaps you said it, that the reason the Jewish farmers were not executed is that they were used to bring in the harvest. Then a discussion ensued as to the possible threat that these Jews could bring to the security because they could house partisans. There must be a contradiction there; in one instance, they were a threat and, therefore, were subject to executions. Were they saved, or were they not saved? If they were saved, why, and if they were killed, why?
MR. HEATH: As I understood the witness, Your Honor, he said he was balancing the desirability of getting in the harvest as against a potential threat.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: I see.
MR. HEATH: He exercised discretion.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: And came to the conclusion that there was more to be gained by not liquidating.
MR. HEATH: Precisely, so I understand it.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Is that correct?
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: I think it is even simpler. They were not farmers, they were craftsmen, who when there would be no longer work for them to do would endanger considerably the interests of the Wehrmacht. I never considered this problem in discussion but now Himmler came to me and ordered that these Jews were to be treated according to the Führer Order, without any further discussion, and without any further consideration of circumstances.
MR. HEATH: What about the gypsies. I believe you have no idea whatever as to how many gypsies your Kommando killed, have you?
A. No. I don’t know.
Q. On what basis did you kill gypsies, just because they were gypsies? Why were they a threat to the security of the Wehrmacht?
A. It is the same as for the Jews.
A. I think I can add up from my own knowledge of European history that the Jews actually during wars regularly carried on espionage service on both sides.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: You were asked about gypsies.
MR. HEATH: I was asking you about gypsies, as the Court points out, and not Jews. ***. I would like to ask you now on what basis you determined that every gypsy found in Russia should be executed, because of the danger to the German Wehrmacht?
A. There was no difference between gypsies and Jews. At the time the same order existed for the Jews. I added the explanation that it is known from European history that the Jews actually during all wars carried out espionage service on both sides.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Well, now, what we are trying to do is to find out what you are going to say about the gypsies… Is it also in European history that gypsies always participated in political strategy and campaigns?
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: Espionage organizations during campaigns.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: The gypsies did?
A. The gypsies in particular. I want to draw your recollection to extensive descriptions of the Thirty Year War by Ricarda Huch and Schiller —
Q. That is going back pretty far in order to justify the killing of gypsies in 1941, isn’t it?
A. I added that as an explanation, as such motive might have played a part in this, to get at this decision.
Q. Could you give us an illustration of any activity of a band of gypsies on behalf of Russia against Germany during this late war?
A. Only the same claim that can be maintained as with regard to Jews, that they actually played a part in the partisan war.
Q. You, yourself cannot give us any illustration of any gypsies being engaged in espionage or in any way sabotaging the German war effort?
A. That is what I tried to say just now. I don’t know whether it came out correctly in the translation. For example, in the Yaila Mountains, such activity of gypsies has also been found.
Q. Do you know that of your own personal knowledge?
A. From my personal knowledge, of course, that is to say always from the reports which came up from the Yaila Mountains.
Q. In an instance in which gypsies were included among those who were liquidated, could you find an objective reason for their liquidation?
A. From Russia I only knew of the gypsy problem from Simferopol. I do not know any other actions against gypsies, except from the one in Simferopol.
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Very well.
MR. HEATH: May I proceed, your Honor?
PRESIDING JUDGE MUSMANNO: Yes, please.
MR. HEATH: Mr. Ohlendorf, you say the gypsies are notorious bearers of intelligence? Isn’t it a fact that the nationals of any invaded state are notorious bearers of intelligence?
Pearson turned to Ohlendorf’s examination by his own lawyer on page 355:
DR. ASCHENAUER (Counsel for defendant Ohlendorf): How do you explain the disgust with which the whole world regarded these exterminations in the East?
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: This seems to have several reasons. For one thing, the deeds in the East were published as being isolated excesses done by the SS. One took them out of their context and made the SS alone responsible. In reality these executions in the East were a consequence of total war which was inevitable if an ideology of one power was to prevail which had as its goal the destruction of every resistance against their conquering the world with their idea. This war was never finished. The preparations for a possible conflict seem to express that whatever happened in the East was only a prelude.
Another point. It has been customary so far to judge executions during a war by various standards. The element regarded as heroic, which made killing seem honorable was the fight of man against man. This has long been overcome. The individual war opponents try to exterminate as many enemies as possible by preserving their own strength. The fact that individual men killed civilians face to face is looked upon as terrible and is pictured as specially gruesome because the order was clearly given to kill these people; but I cannot morally evaluate a deed any better, a deed which makes it possible, by pushing of a button, to kill a much larger number of civilians, men, women, and children, even to hurt them for generations, than those deeds of individual people who for the same purpose, namely, to achieve the goal of the war, must shoot individual persons. I believe that the time will come which will remove these moral differences in executions for the purposes of war. I cannot see that political factors and political and economic conventions, which in their consequences cause the execution of acts of violence against and misery for millions of people, have done anything better morally only because the conscious consequences were not expressly made known to the population. I believe, therefore, that when history has come to an end, that this conflict will not have started in 1941, but with the victory of bolshevism in Russia, that then only can the judgment of history be made which will inform about various phases of this conflict.
MR. HEATH: Mr. Ohlendorf, what happened to the Jewish children, the gypsy children?
DEFENDANT OHLENDORF: According to orders they were to be killed just like their parents.
Q. Did you kill them just like their parents?
A. I did not get any other reports.
Q. I don’t understand your answer. Did your reports show the killing of children or did they show that children had been spared?
A. They also revealed the executions of children.
Q. Will you explain to the Tribunal what conceivable threat to the security of the Wehrmacht a child constituted in your judgment?
A. I believe I cannot add anything to your previous question. I did not have to determine the danger but the order contained that all Jews including the children were considered to constitute a danger for the security of this area.
Q. Will you agree that there was absolutely no rational basis for killing children except genocide and the killing of races?
A. I believe that it is very simple to explain if one starts from the fact that this order did not only try to achieve security, but also permanent security because the children would grow up and surely, being the children of parents who had been killed, they would constitute a danger no smaller than that of the parents.
Q. That is the master race exactly, is it not, the decimation of whole races in order to remove a real or fancied threat to the German people?
A. Mr. Prosecutor, I did not see the execution of children myself although I attended three mass executions.
Q. Are you saying they didn’t kill children now?
A. I did not say that. May I finish? I attended three mass executions and did not see any children and no command ever searched for children, but I have seen very many children killed in this war through air attacks, for the security of other nations…
Pearson asked Weber if Ohlendorf then attempted to justify the actions of the Einsatzgruppen on the basis that the Allied bombings in Germany took a tremendous toll as well. Weber replied that Ohlendorf said that he never saw any children executed by the Germans, but he did see German children killed in bombings by the Allies and he tried to draw a comparison between the two. (24 6350)
Pearson suggested that “security” to the Nazis meant exterminating the whole Jewish race. Weber replied that he had studied Ohlendorf’s testimony in 1979 and 1980. If accepted, Ohlendorf’s testimony showed there was a German policy to kill all the Jews in the occupied Soviet territories pursuant to a secret Hitler order. The evaluation of this testimony had to be made on consideration of the circumstances in which it was given and on consideration of other evidence. Outside of Ohlendorf’s testimony there was no evidence of the alleged “Führer Order” and exterminationists like Raul Hilberg now admitted there may never have been such an order, either verbal or written. On the other hand, the written orders for the Einsatzgruppen which did exist, namely, the Heydrich order of July 4, 1941, clearly set out the policy regarding Jews: the killings that took place were reprisal actions or specific shootings of Jews for security reasons. (24- 6351 to 6354)
If Ohlendorf’s testimony was correct and there was a German policy to kill all the Jews in Russia, the Germans would presumably have killed them. In fact, it was known that they did not. Large ghettos of Jews existed in Minsk, Bialystok, Vilna and other areas of occupied Soviet territory. Even up until 1944, the Germans deported Jews from the Reich into the Soviet Union. This was completely inconsistent with the extermination theory. If the purpose had been to exterminate the Jews, presumably they would have been sent to the so-called extermination centres such as Auschwitz rather than hundreds of miles further to the east. Moreover, the deportations took place after the Einsatzgruppen had been dissolved. Lastly, it was known from such sources as the Korherr report that Soviet Jews were taken from Soviet territory for labour in the German Reich itself. This too was inconsistent with an extermination. (24-6354, 6355)
Pearson turned to Did Six Million Really Die? at page 13 where Harwood wrote that Ohlendorf claimed that he had been tortured. Weber knew of no evidence that Ohlendorf was tortured and agreed this was a false statement to the best of his knowledge. (24-6357, 6358)
Pearson turned to pages 13-14 of the pamphlet where Harwood wrote:
Ohlendorf lived long enough to see Auerbach convicted for embezzlement and fraud (forging documents purporting to show huge payments of compensation to non-existent people) before his own execution finally took place in 1951.
Weber testified that he had consulted the second edition of Hilberg and determined that Auerbach was convicted of fraud. Pearson produced the first edition of Hilberg and asked Weber to read the passage on page 745 dealing with Auerbach:
At the trial Auerbach admitted his use of the title “Doctor” (he had been called by that title for so long that he finally adopted it). The court itself freed him from the principal charge of making payments to “dead souls.” His conviction upon the remaining charges led to a sentence of two and one-half years in prison and $643 in fines. Stunned, Auerbach on a sickbed protested his innocence. Then he took his life.
Weber testified that this passage had been rewritten in the second edition. Weber assumed that Auerbach died before Ohlendorf was executed. It was also true that Auerbach was convicted. Weber subsequently indicated he had made a mistake about this and that Hilberg made it clear that Auerbach was not convicted for embezzlement, fraud or forgery. (24-6360 to 6363, 6438)
Pearson turned to page 14 of the pamphlet where Harwood had written:
The Soviet charge that the Action Groups had wantonly exterminated a million Jews during their operations has been shown subsequently to be a massive falsification. In fact, there had never been the slightest statistical basis for the figure. In this connection, Poliakov and Wulf cite the statement of Wilhelm Hoettl, the dubious American spy, double agent and former assistant of Eichmann. Hoettl, it will be remembered, claimed that Eichmann had “told him” that six million Jews had been exterminated — and he added that two million of these had been killed by the Einsatzgruppen. This absurd figure went beyond even the wildest estimates of Soviet Prosecutor Rudenko, and it was not given any credence by the American Tribunal which tried and condemned Ohlendorf.
Weber agreed that it was false to say the figure of 2 million was not given any credence by the American tribunal which tried and convicted Ohlendorf. (24-6365)
Pearson produced the judgment of the American tribunal and read from pages 427 and 430:
One million human corpses is a concept too bizarre and too fantastical for normal mental comprehension. As suggested before, the mention of one million deaths produces no shock at all commensurate with its enormity because to the average brain one million is more a symbol than a quantitative measure. However, if one reads through the reports of the Einsatzgruppen and observes the small numbers getting larger, climbing into ten thousand, tens of thousands, a hundred thousand and beyond, then one can at last believe that this actually happened — the cold blooded, premeditated killing of one million human beings…The shooting of Jews eventually became a routine job and at times Kommandos sought to avoid executions, not out of charity or sympathy, but because it meant just that much more work. The defendant Nosske testified to a caravan of from 6,000 to 7,000 Jews who had been driven across the Dnester River by the Rumanians into territory occupied by the German forces, and whom he guided back across the river. When asked why these Jews had been expelled from Rumania, Nosske replied — “I have no idea. I assume that the Rumanians wanted to get rid of them and sent them into the German territory so that we would have to shoot them, and we would have the trouble of shooting them. We didn’t want to do that. We didn’t want to do the work for the Rumanians, and we never did, nor at all other places where something similar happened. We refused it and, therefore, we sent them back.”
One or two defence counsel have asserted that the number of deaths resulting from acts of the organizations to which the defendants belonged did not reach the total of 1,000,000. As a matter of fact, it went far beyond 1,000,000. As already indicated, the International Military Tribunal, after a trial lasting 10 months, studying and analyzing figures and reports, declared – “The RSHA played a leading part in the ‘final solution’ of the Jewish question by the extermination of the Jews. A special section, under the Amt IV of the RSHA was established to supervise this program. Under its direction, approximately six million Jews were murdered of which two million were killed by Einsatzgruppen and other units of the security police.”
Ohlendorf, in testifying before the International Military Tribunal declared that, according to the reports, his Einsatzgruppe killed 90,000 people. He also told of the methods he employed to prevent the exaggeration of figures. He did say that other Einsatzgruppen were not as careful as he was in presenting totals, but he presented no evidence to attack numbers presented by other Einsatzgruppen. Reference must also be made to the statement of the defendant Heinz Schubert who not only served as adjutant to Ohlendorf in the field from October 1941 to June 1942, but who continued in the same capacity of adjutant in the RSHA, office [Amt] III B, for both Ohlendorf and Dr. Hans Emlich, until the end of 1944. If there was any question about the correctness of the figures, this is where the question would have been raised, but Schubert expressed no doubt nor did he say that these individuals who were momently informed in the statistics entertained the slightest doubt about them in any way. Schubert showed very specifically the care which was taken to prepare the reports and to avoid error.
“The Einsatzgruppe reported in two ways to the Reich Security Head Office. Once through radio, then in writing. The radio reports were kept strictly secret and, apart from Ohlendorf, his deputy Standartenführer Willy Seibert and the head telegraphist Fritsch, nobody, with the exception of the radio personnel, was allowed to enter the radio station…”
The defendant Blume testified that he completely dismissed the thought of ever filing a false report because he regarded that as unworthy of himself.
Then, the actual figures mentioned in the reports, staggering though they are, do by no means tell the entire story. Since the objective of the Einsatzgruppen was to exterminate all people falling in the categories announced in the Führer Order, the completion of the job in any given geographical area was often simply announced with the phrase, “There is no longer any Jewish population.” Cities, towns, and villages were combed by the Kommandos and when all Jews in that particular community were killed, the report-writer laconically telegraphed or wrote to Berlin that the section in question was “freed of Jews.” Sometimes, the extermination area covered a whole country like Esthonia or a large territory like the Crimea. In determining the numbers killed in a designation of this character one needs merely to study the atlas and the census of the period in question. Sometimes the area set aside for an execution operation was arbitrarily set according to Kommandos. (Excerpt of Judgment , NMT “Green Series”, vol. 4, filed as Exhibit 101 at 24-6388)
Weber testified that both the Nuremberg Tribunal and the American military tribunal which convicted Ohlendorf essentially added up the numbers in the Einsatzgruppen reports and came up with about 2 million Jewish dead. This figure, however, was no longer considered accurate by even exterminationists such as Raul Hilberg. Hilberg claimed that not 2 million but 1 million Jews were killed in this area. He did not accept the findings of the International Military Tribunal nor the accuracy of the figures given in the Einsatzgruppen reports. (24-6371)
Weber agreed that it was false to say, as Verrall had, that the figure of 2 million was not given any credence by the American tribunal which tried and convicted Ohlendorf. He did not believe, however, that the error was deliberately made. Weber’s impression from speaking with Verrall was that he did not make the statement maliciously or with the intent to deceive. Verrall was not familiar with the records of the tribunal and relied upon secondary sources. (24-6373, 6374)
With respect to the portion of Did Six Million Really Die? dealing with the book Manstein by Paget on the trial of Field-Marshal Manstein, Weber agreed that it would have been in the interests of more complete information if the booklet had mentioned the fact that Paget was Manstein’s lawyer.11 Weber relied on the Manstein book in his own research although he did not contact Paget, to make inquiries about how he arrived at his conclusions regarding the exaggerations in the Einsatzgruppen reports. Weber relied on what Paget said in relation to what many others had also said, that was, that the figures in the Einsatzgruppen reports were grossly exaggerated. (24-6376 to 6379)
Manstein was in nominal command of the Einsatzgruppen; he was accused of complicity by the Allies because he was supposed to have known about their activity. The chief piece of evidence used against him was an order that he issued on November 20, 1941 directing the army to co-operate with the Einsatzgruppen in the killing of Jews. The order, Weber agreed, attempted to justify what it called the “harsh punishment of Jewry.” (24-6380 to 6382)
Pearson produced volume 20 of the IMT “Blue Series” volumes, page 642, and read an excerpt from the Manstein order of November 20, 1941. This order stated:
“Jewry constitutes the middleman between the enemy in the rear and the remainder of the Red Armed Forces which is still fighting, and the Red leadership. More strongly than in Europe it holds all the key positions in the political leadership and administration, controls commerce and trades, and further forms the nucleus for all unrest and possible uprisings.
“The Jewish-Bolshevist system must be exterminated once and for all. Never again must it encroach upon our European living space.
“The German soldier has therefore not only the task of crushing the military potential of this system. He comes also as the bearer of a racial concept and as the avenger of all the cruelties which have been perpetrated on him and on the German people.
“The fight behind the lines is not yet being taken seriously enough. Active co operation of all soldiers must be demanded in the disarming of the population, the control and arrest of all roving soldiers and civilians, and the removal of Bolshevist symbols…
“The soldier must appreciate the necessity for the harsh punishment of Jewry, the spiritual bearer of the Bolshevist terror. This is also necessary in order to nip in the bud all uprisings which are mostly plotted by Jews.”
Weber did not agree that this order gave the same justification for the killing of Jews that Ohlendorf gave in his trial testimony. The order referred explicitly to the extermination of the Jewish-Bolshevist system and of the power and position the Jews had. It did not say, as Ohlendorf had testified, that Jewry itself had to be exterminated. In fact, the order was issued because too many Jews were being employed by the German armed forces. Even after its issuance, there were cases where German soldiers were executed for killing Jews. Weber noted that Churchill himself had contributed to Manstein’s defence fund because he felt the case was unjust. (24-6390 to 6393)
Pearson returned to Did Six Million Really Die? at page 14:
As Senator McCarthy pointed out, Pohl had signed some incriminating statements after being subjected to severe torture, including a bogus admission that he had seen a gas chamber at Auschwitz in the summer of 1944. The prosecution strenuously pressed this charge, but Pohl successfully repudiated it.
Weber had seen no evidence that Senator McCarthy made such a statement. There was evidence, however, that Pohl was tortured. The torture, as Weber remembered, did not involve an admission about gassings at Auschwitz. (24-6395)
Pearson read from the testimony of Pohl in NMT “Green Series,” volume 5, pages 664- 665:
PRESIDING JUDGE TOMS: But what about the intentional extermination program? That was started long before the collapse of the German defense, or don’t you know anything about that either?
DEFENDANT POHL: Mr. President, I do not know what extermination program you are referring to. I do know that the transfer of the camps further into the Reich and that the placing of these masses within the Reich were based on an extermination program.
Q. I am talking about the intentional extermination of the old, the sick, and the Jews; whether they were able-bodied or not; by shooting, by hanging, and by gassing, especially at Auschwitz. Didn’t you know anything about the extermination at Auschwitz?
A. Of course I had knowledge of it. The whole extermination program, which was directed against the Jews, was an action which was channeled through the RSHA and for which Eichmann organized transports of Jews who came to Auschwitz and were exterminated by Höss. That program had nothing to do with the concentration camps as such, and the existing concentration camps were actually misused in this respect. The documents and the reports for this program, as far as I am informed, did not even go through the Inspectorate of Concentration Camps. This was all carried out in a very small circle.
Q. But on a very large scale?
A. Well, I had the first authentic figures after the war. At that time I did not have any idea at all that this number extended to millions. The whole program of the extermination of the Jews was dealt with by Amt IV of the RSHA, and the organizer of the transports was a certain man named Eichmann who sent these transports to Auschwitz, and there these transports were exterminated by Höss, who in this case did not act as camp commander but as commissioner of Himmler or the Reich government.
Q. Were you in charge of the concentration camps while this program was being carried out by RSHA?
A. I do not know when this program started.
Q. Well, no matter when it started, was it being carried on at any time while you were in charge of concentration camps?
A. Whether in the year 1942 or 1943 this extermination was still carried out I don’t know. I don’t know how long it lasted.
Q. Well, it is your contention they just borrowed the concentration camps to carry out the extermination program?
A. That is my opinion, yes.
Q. Just one second. In order to carry out the extermination program, they had to build gas chambers at the concentration camps?
A. Yes. But I did not have any gas chambers constructed. I did not give any order whatsoever that gas chambers should be established.
Q. Well, were they constructed while you were in charge?
A. I do not know exactly in what years the gas chambers at Auschwitz were erected.
Q. Well, no matter when they were erected, were they there and operating while you were in charge?
A. As long as Jews were exterminated the gas chambers were working and operating.
Q. And was that while you were in charge of concentration camps?
A. I cannot say that, because I have visited Auschwitz only once in 1944 and perhaps twice in 1943. At that time I did not see that Jews were being exterminated. I, therefore, do not know how long this program was underway.
Q. Did you see any gas chambers when you were there?
A. I have seen the gas chambers as buildings in the distance, yes.
Q. You knew they were there.
A. Yes. I knew that.
Q. What did you think they were being used for?
A. I knew that Jews were being exterminated and that the gas chambers were being used for that purpose.
Q. And when you saw them and knew that Jews were being exterminated, you were in charge of that concentration camp?
A. Yes. The gas chambers were standing there until the last day. They were standing there also when the concentration camps were subordinate to me. They were not destroyed previously. (Extract from Pohl testimony filed as Exhibit 102 at 24-6450)
Weber testified that the sentence in Did Six Million Really Die? — “The prosecution strenuously pressed this charge but Pohl successfully repudiated it” — was not true to the best of his knowledge. To Weber, it seemed implicit in the sentence that Pohl successfully repudiated the charge at his trial and not elsewhere. Weber testified that Pohl did in fact repudiate his statement after the trial was over. Before Pohl was executed, he made a statement that he was tortured, that his testimony with respect to gas chambers was not true. The two pages of Pohl’s testimony which Pearson had read did therefore not refute the pamphlet. (24-6445 to 6450)
Weber agreed that Pohl drew a distinction between concentration camps and extermination camps, the same distinction which the International Tracing Service made. To Weber, the distinction was hard to make since camps such as Auschwitz and Majdanek were said to be both concentration and extermination camps. Pohl claimed that the only extermination camp was Auschwitz. On page 667 of his testimony Pohl said:
These gas chambers were only at Auschwitz. I did not see any other extermination facilities at other camps.
Those who upheld the extermination story did not say that anymore, said Weber. They claimed there were other extermination centres. (24-6450 to 6452)
Pearson turned to the subject of Konrad Morgen, who was called as a defence witness on behalf of the SS at Nuremberg. Pearson read from Morgen’s testimony on August 7 and 8, 1946 at pages 496 and 499 of the IMT “Blue Series,” volume 20:
HERR PELCKMANN: Thank you, Witness. Yesterday you had already begun the description of the so- called extermination camps and the system of the extermination camps, but I should like to go back to conditions in the concentration camps which are to be distinguished from the so-called extermination camps.
You had given a description of the outward impression… …
MORGEN: As supreme orders I consider the mass extermination of human beings which has already been described, not in the concentration camps but in separate extermination places. There were also execution orders of the Reich Security Main Office against individuals and groups of persons.
The third point deals with the majority of individual crimes of which I said…
THE PRESIDENT: Which is the witness talking about when he talks about extermination camps? Which are you talking about? Which do you call extermination camps?
HERR PELCKMANN: Please answer the question, Witness.
MORGEN: By extermination camps I mean those which were established exclusively for the extermination of human beings with the use of technical means, such as gas.
THE PRESIDENT: Which were they?
MORGEN: Yesterday I described the four camps of the Kriminalkommissar Wirth and referred to the Camp Auschwitz. By “Extermination Camp Auschwitz” I did not mean the concentration camp. It did not exist there. I meant a separate extermination camp near Auschwitz, called “Monowitz.”
Weber testified that Morgen referred several times to the so-called Monowitz extermination camp at Auschwitz. No Holocaust historian claimed that Monowitz was an extermination camp; it was Birkenau which was claimed to be the extermination centre. Weber referred to page 504 of Morgen’s testimony:
MORGEN: …the Extermination Camp Monowitz lay far away from the concentration camp. It was situated on an extensive industrial site and was not recognizable as such and everywhere on the horizon there were smoking chimneys.
Morgen named Monowitz, said Weber, and was not confusing it with Birkenau. (24 6457, 6458)
Pearson returned to page 503 of Morgen’s testimony:
MORGEN: I thoroughly investigated the entire stretch of territory and studied the layout and installations. The prisoners arrived on a side track in closed transport cars and were unloaded there by Jewish prisoners. Then they were segregated into able-bodied and disabled, and here already the methods of Höss and Wirth differ. The separation of the disabled was done in a fairly simple way. Next to the place of the unloading there were several trucks and the doctor gave the arrivals the choice to use these trucks. He said that only sick, old persons and women with children, were allowed to use them. Thereupon these persons swarmed toward the transportation prepared for their use, and then he needed only to hold back the prisoners that he did not want to send to destruction. These trucks drove off, but they did not drive to the Concentration Camp Auschwitz, but in another direction to the Extermination Camp Monowitz, which was a few kilometers away. This extermination camp consisted of a number of crematories which were not recognizable as such from the outside. They could have been taken for large bathing establishments, and that is what they told the prisoners. These crematories were surrounded by a barbed wire fence and were guarded from the inside by the Jewish labor details which I have already mentioned. The new arrivals were led into a large dressing room and told to take their clothes off. When this was done –
HERR PELCKMANN: Is that not what you described yesterday?
MORGEN: Of course.
HERR PELCKMANN: What precautions were taken to keep these things absolutely secret?
MORGEN: The prisoners who marched off to the concentration camp had no inkling of where the other prisoners were taken. The Extermination Camp Monowitz lay far away from the concentration camp. It was situated on an extensive industrial site and was not recognizable as such and everywhere on the horizon there were smoking chimneys. The camp itself was guarded on the outside by special troops of men from the Baltic, Estonians, Lithuanians, Latvians, and also Ukrainians. The entire technical arrangement was almost exclusively in the hands of the prisoners who were assigned for this job and they were only supervised each time by an Unterführer.
Weber reiterated that Morgen was clearly talking about Monowitz and not Birkenau. He suggested that Morgen may have lied in his testimony in order to try to exonerate the SS, for whom he was testifying. He may have decided not to contest the extermination allegation and simply say that the SS had nothing to do with it. He may have been misinformed. (24-6463)
Pearson continued reading from Morgen’s testimony at page 493:
MORGEN: I asked Wirth what this had to do with the Jewish wedding. Then, Wirth described the method by which he carried out the extermination of Jews and he said something like this: “One has to fight the Jews with their own weapons…” …Then I asked Wirth how he killed Jews with these Jewish agents of his. Wirth described the whole procedure that went off like a film every time. The extermination camps were in the east of the Government General, in big forests or uninhabited wastelands. They were built up like a Potemkin village…
Weber testified that this was not a description of Majdanek. Morgen was so alarmed by this charge that he went to Himmler personally to ask him about it. Himmler himself told Morgen to investigate the charges of extermination. This indicated to Weber that if there was an extermination at Auschwitz, it was carried out without any authority or orders from Himmler. (24-6465)
Pearson continued reading at page 506:
HERR PELCKMANN: Thank you. Now, Witness, under normal circumstances what would you have had to do after you had learned of all these terrible things?
MORGEN: Under normal circumstances I would have had to have Kriminalcommissar Wirth and Commander Höss arrested and charged with murder.
HERR PELCKMANN: Did you do that?
HERR PELCKMANN: Why not?
MORGEN: The answer is already entailed in the question. The circumstances prevailing in Germany during the war were no longer normal in the sense of State legal guarantees. Besides, the following must be considered: I was not simply a judge, but I was a judge of military penal justice. No court-martial in the world could bring the Supreme Commander, let alone the head of the State, to court.
HERR PELCKMANN: Please do not discuss problems of law, but tell us why you did not do what you realized you should have done?
MORGEN: I beg your pardon; I was saying that it was not possible for me as Obersturmbannführer to arrest Hitler, who, as I saw it, was the instigator of these orders.
HERR PELCKMANN: Then what did you do?
MORGEN: On the basis of this insight, I realized that something had to be done immediately to put an end to this action. Hitler had to be induced to withdraw his orders. Under the circumstances, this could be done only by Himmler as Minister of the Interior and Minister of the Police. I thought at that time that I must endeavor to approach Himmler through the heads of the departments and make it clear to him, by explaining the effects of this system, that through these methods the State was being led straight into an abyss. Therefore I approached my immediate superior, the chief of the Criminal Police, SS Obergruppenführer Nebe…to the Reich Security Main Office. [For this very purpose a judge was sent there,] who had the task of investigating all sections of the Reich Security Main Office, to see whether such orders were in existence. As I heard, the result was negative. Thereupon an attempt was made to take direct steps against Höss, but in the meantime the front had advanced…
Morgen’s superiors encouraged him to look into the extermination charge, said Weber. No evidence was found of any orders and he was encouraged to investigate further. He was unable to do so because of the advance of the Russian front. (24 6470, 6471)
In Weber’s opinion, Majdanek was simply a large concentration camp. It had an enormous industrial works built for the purpose of turning out war materials. Sobibor was a transit camp; Treblinka was probably a combination labour camp and transit camp. There was very little evidence concerning Belzec although it was likely a transit camp. It was hard to determine what Chelmno was. There was a monument today in a field where the camp was supposed to have been, but even exterminationists were not sure if that was where Chelmno actually was. (24-6472, 6473)
Railroad records showed that thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of people were transported through these camps; Weber did not believe, however, that millions were transported there. The Jews were sent to camps like Sobibor temporarily and then transported elsewhere. (24- 6474, 6476)
Weber pointed out that very little documentary evidence existed about these camps. In the case of Majdanek, the Polish Communist government would not allow free access. In the case of Sobibor, there were some surviving records, including letters between Himmler and Pohl which discussed turning Sobibor from a transit camp into a concentration camp for workers to dismantle Soviet munitions. This was inconsistent with the alleged status of Sobibor as an extermination camp. (24-6475)
In Weber’s view, the term “final solution” referred to a programme to rid Europe of the Jews first by emigration, then by deportation to Poland and the occupied Soviet territories. At the conclusion of the war, they were to be expelled from Europe altogether. Weber agreed it would not be inaccurate to say that the term “final solution” was a euphemism. It was something like the euphemistic term “affirmative action” used in the United States. Exterminationist historians agreed that up to 1941 or 1942, the term meant emigration. There was no clear agreement among the exterminationists, however, at what point the extermination programme supposedly began and when the meaning of “final solution” changed to mean the extermination of the Jews. (24- 6476 to 6479)
Pearson produced a document from the National Archives entitled “Solution of the Jewish Question in Galicia.” Weber testified that he was familiar with this grim document which was a lengthy report about rounding up Jews in Galicia in 1943. Weber indicated there was generally no question about its authenticity. (24-6481, 6482)
Pearson read a sentence from page 5 of the translation:
In the course of this action again thousands of Jews were caught who were in possession of forged certificates or who had obtained surreptitiously certificates of labor by all kinds of pretexts. These Jews also were exposed to special treatment.
Weber agreed that the term “special treatment” was a euphemism which in this context meant “killed” but pointed out that at other times it did not mean this. (24 6482, 6483)
Pearson read further at page 9:
In the meantime further evacuation (“Aussiedelung”) was executed with energy, so that with effect from 23 June 1943 all Jewish Residence Districts could be dissolved. Therewith I report that the District of Galicia, with the exception of these Jews living in the camps being under the control of the SS Pol. Leader, is free from Jews. Jews still caught in small numbers are given special treatment by the competent detachments of Police and Gendarmerie.
Weber testified that in the context of the passage, the term ‘special treatment’ probably meant killing. The description that an area was ‘free from Jews’, however, did not mean there were no Jews left in the district; it meant they were contained in camps or ghettos. (24-6484, 6485)
Weber agreed that the report indicated that 434,329 Jews had been evacuated from Galicia. He believed this figure to be seriously inflated. In his opinion, the Jews were sent to camps not only in Galicia but elsewhere. (24-6485)
Pearson continued reading:
Together with the evacuated action, we executed the confiscation Jewish property. Very high amounts were confiscated and paid over to the Special Staff “Reinhard.”
Weber did not agree that this referred to a special unit named after Reinhard Heydrich. The Germans did not name operations after someone’s first name. The unit in fact was named for an official in the finance office whose last name was Reinhard. Believing the operation was named after Heydrich was a common mistake made by Holocaust historians. (24-6487, 6488)
Weber agreed that the document indicated that various items such as dental gold, dentures, powder boxes, broken gold, rings, bank notes and paper were confiscated from the Jews and turned over to the Special Staff Reinhard. (24-6488)
Pearson read further from page 19:
Since we received more and more alarming reports on the Jews becoming armed in an ever increasing manner, we started during the last fortnight in June 1943 an action throughout the whole of the district of Galicia with the intent to use strongest measures to destroy the Jewish gangsterdom. Special measures were found necessary during the action to dissolve the Ghetto in Lwow, where the dug-outs mentioned above had been established. Here we had to act brutally from the beginning, in order to avoid losses on our side: we had to blow up or to burn down several houses. On this occasion the surprising fact arose that we were able to catch about 20,000 Jews instead of 12,000 Jews who had registered. We had to pull at least 3,000 Jewish corpses out of every kind of hiding places; they had committed suicide by taking poison.
Weber testified that the operation being talked about in the document was not just a rounding up of Jews for transport to other places, but was also a cover or euphemism in that many Jews were also shot. In Weber’s opinion, the 3,000 Jews took poison to avoid being killed. Where a Jewish ghetto was considered to be a stronghold of partisan activity, the Germans went in very brutally and broke the entire thing up. Weber agreed that the document indicated the German losses as a result of the partisan actions were seven men shot by Jews and one man stabbed by Jews. (24-6489 to 6491; Galicia document filed as Exhibit 118))
Weber compared the situation to the Vietnam War. When a village was considered a major Vietcong stronghold, the Americans didn’t go in and ask everybody politely what they were doing. They sent in air strikes and blasted and killed everything that was there. Such operations had taken place many times. (24-6492)
Weber agreed that Treblinka, Sobibor, Belzec, Chelmno, Auschwitz and Majdanek were all west of the Galicia district. The Jews may very well have been sent westward for labour purposes, said Weber. Sobibor, Belzec and Treblinka were levelled. It was not known who destroyed them or why; it was simply known that after the war they were not there anymore. The Germans may have done it but historians did not know. They may have been levelled to take the lumber. If the contention was that the Germans tried to destroy all evidence of their extermination camps, they didn’t do a very good job of it because the most important of the alleged extermination camps, Auschwitz and Majdanek, were not levelled. Nor was Birkenau destroyed. It was taken intact by the Soviets on January 20, 1945 with approximately 3,000 to 5,000 inmates who were sick and unable to be transported. Birkenau as a totality was still quite intact even to this day. (24-6495 to 6500)
Pearson turned to the subject of the Wannsee Conference protocol. Weber testified that he had not investigated the allegation that Eichmann prepared the document. He believed, however, that Eichmann lied when he testified at his trial in Israel that the Wannsee Conference was to finalize a plan for the extermination of the Jews. Eichmann was the only one of those at the conference who later made this claim. Today it was conceded by a number of exterminationist historians that the Wannsee Conference was not a conference for any extermination of the Jews. (24-6500 to 6502)
It would have been madness for Eichmann to take the position at his trial that there was no extermination programme in an atmosphere where it was assumed from the outset that there was such a programme. Weber believed Eichmann attempted to save his life by saying there was an extermination but that he was not responsible for it. (24-6503)
Pearson asked Weber how he met Richard Verrall, the author of Did Six Million Really Die?. Weber testified that he was introduced to Verrall in 1977 by the booklet’s publisher, Anthony Hancock. Richard Verrall was a member of the National Front movement in Britain and the editor of their monthly newspaper, the Spearhead. Weber did not believe the National Front was a neo-Nazi organization. It considered the question of race to be very important and shared that with the Nazi movement and a lot of other people, including Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt. At the time of the Second World War, said Weber, the United States was a racist country. (24-6504 to 6507)
The original English publisher of Did Six Million Really Die? was the Historical Review Press. It was not associated with the Institute for Historical Review in California. Both publishing houses were important in publishing revisionist material on the Holocaust issue. (24-6508, 6509)
Pearson suggested to Weber that the credibility of Harry Elmer Barnes became suspect after World War II when he pronounced the theory that Franklin Roosevelt maneuvered the attack on Pearl Harbour. Weber testified that Barnes’s stature and prominence suffered enormously after the Second World War because he took the view that Roosevelt may have known about the attack on Pearl Harbour in advance. This was a thesis that was shared by a number of other historians including John Toland. Barnes also suffered because he wrote about Roosevelt’s and Churchill’s roles in encouraging the outbreak of war in 1939. (24-6509, 6510)
Weber agreed that he had written articles for the Journal of Historical Review, Spotlight (connected to Liberty Lobby) and the National Vanguard where he was the News Editor for a period of time. The National Vanguard was published by the National Alliance. The leader of the National Alliance was a man named Pierce who was very influential in his life. Pierce was involved with the National Socialist White People’s Party, sometimes called the American Nazi Party. Pierce worked with the leader of that party, a man named Rockwell.(24-6511, 6512)
Pearson produced the book The Holocaust in History by Professor Michael Marrus of the University of Toronto. The book, which was a historiography of the Holocaust, did not mention Professor Faurisson or Professor Arthur Butz. Weber pointed out Marrus had made his own selection of who he wanted to include in the book. (24-6513, 6514)
Pearson read from the preface of the book:
The chapters that follow address what I think are the most important themes discussed by historians of the Holocaust — and themes about which there has been serious historical investigation. I have had no difficulty excluding from this book any discussion of the so-called revisionists — malevolent cranks who contend that the Holocaust never happened. Regrettably this is no longer an insignificant current, and there are signs that those who concoct such fantasies are engaged in a much wider anti-Jewish enterprise.
Those were Marrus’s views, said Weber; he chose to simply dismiss the work of scholars like Professor Faurisson. In Weber’s opinion, the allegation that revisionists were part of a wider anti-Jewish enterprise was a totally wrong and slanderous statement. (24-6518)
March 28, 1988
Pearson suggested that it was difficult for Richard Verrall to have errors in Did Six Million Really Die? pointed out to him when he used a false name on the pamphlet. Weber testified that Verrall hoped that future editions would be more accurate and that he wanted errors pointed out to him by people he talked with. For quite a period of time he did not want his authorship of the book to be known, but there were people who knew privately that he was the author. He also received many letters from people who wrote to him as “Richard Harwood” and he was glad to receive them. These letters were sent to the address of the publisher which was printed on the booklet. Verrall publicly acknowledged today that he was the author. (25-6520 to 6522)
Pearson produced an article written by Weber and published in the May 1978 edition of the National Vanguard. The article was written 10 years before, said Weber, and did not reflect his present viewpoints. It was written about a year before Weber became really interested in the Holocaust issue. (25-6526)12
Weber read the article to the court:
My first interest in politics began during the Kennedy-Johnson years of unrestrained liberal optimism. Kennedy announced the Peace Corps and the Alliance for Progress. Johnson proclaimed that his War on Poverty and other programs would begin a new age of abundance and equality for all.
“Freedom marches” and civil rights laws were dismantling the last barriers to “racial equality,” we were told. Films such as “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” suggested a happy mulatto future for America. I shared the national mood of childlike confidence. The President and the press claimed that the Great Society would usher in the liberal millennium.
I took the politicians and media masters at their word. I earnestly believed in the social perfectibility of man, and in my all-White high school, I vigorously defended the notion that all races were created equal. During the summer, I volunteered time to help tutor young Blacks.
There were no Negroes in the Portland, Oregon neighborhood where I grew up. Race was never discussed at home, and my parents actively supported liberal Democrats at election time. Like many Americans in the North during the 1960s, I uncritically accepted the notion that inferior Negro social performance was the result of White racism and an environment of deprivation.
Like many Oregonians, I assumed that we would avoid racial problems by showing tolerance and understanding. We would be different from those racist Whites in the East and South, I thought.
But if social and racial equality were realistic goals, why had they not been achieved long before? Dissatisfied with both liberal and conservative explanations, I turned to Marxism for answers. I attended meetings of various Marxist groups in Portland and was surprised by the reasonableness of their viewpoint.
Like millions of other young Americans, I became infatuated with the New Left. The Vietnam War starkly revealed to us the boundless hypocrisy of the System. Only a fool could believe a President who told the world that Americans were destroying Vietnam for the good of the Vietnamese themselves. And widespread Black uprisings exposed the futility and bankruptcy of Great Society ‘equality’ schemes.
I had already rejected right-wing conservatism as pathetically moribund and utterly without principle. I had seen conservatives eventually give in to the liberals on every important issue. The conservative position of the moment was the liberal position of ten years ago. The left, on the other hand, seemed dynamic, alive, progressive, and young.
We were not really revolutionaries, we millions of young leftists who joined the demonstrations behind New Left banners. We demanded only the fulfillment of those liberal promises of world peace, racial equality, and economic redistribution which the politicians, the writers, and our teachers had made for many decades. We wanted action, not more high-sounding but empty rhetoric. We demanded no new goals, but only the realization of those which we had been taught were desirable.
In my last year of high school, 1969, and during the following summer, I worked in the campaign to raise money for starving, war-ravaged Biafrans, and I enthusiastically supported the Biafran struggle for independence from Nigeria. That war for ‘national liberation’ seemed infinitely more vital and noble than the wretched shop-politics of the West.
During the Biafra campaign I was both amazed and dismayed by the ignorance of the issues involved which was displayed by the wealthy liberals, church group representatives, politicians, and many ordinary White Americans who contributed money or time. More disgusting yet were the expressions of guilt, opportunism, and inadequacy which characterized many of the most eager Biafra relief campaign supporters.
After the Biafra summer campaign, I flew to Europe. During a year spent working in Bonn, Germany, I first began to doubt many of my liberal ideas.
In elementary and high school, I had been very interested in modern European history. I devoured many history books, especially ones dealing with the intriguing Hitler years, and now I hoped to find out more about that puzzling era.
On the one hand, I had heard that Hitler and his small gang of henchmen had managed to deceptively take over and enslave the largest, most cultural and advanced nation in Europe and then madly tried to take over the world. On the other hand, I was also taught that the German people were traditionally militaristic, chauvinistic, power-hungry fanatics who eagerly supported Hitler’s evil policies and were, therefore, also collectively “guilty” of “crimes against humanity.”
While living and working in Bonn, I found out from countless conversations with ordinary citizens that both notions were false. My whole view of modern history changed.
For the first time I learned that all but a small (and mostly conservative) minority of Germans had fervently supported Hitler until the bitter end. Older workers at the wallpaper factory where I worked spoke respectfully of Hitler and enthusiastically of what National Socialism had meant for the working man. Others talked of the hope, prosperity, order and progress which “those years” had meant.
For the first time I learned about the forced mass expulsion and deaths of millions of Germans from Prussia, Sudetenland, Pomerania and Silesia in 1944-45. Many older Germans told me their horrifying recollections of the starvation, mass killings and terror which the victorious Allied armies had brought to Central Europe.
One older woman recounted her family’s trek through several hundred miles of death and destruction from Silesia to the Rhineland carrying all their belongings…workers told of the total expropriation of their towns and villages in the land and annexed by Poland and Russia after the war. Other described the horror of the Soviet occupation of the East and of the Morgenthau Plan starvation and destruction under Allied occupation in the West until 1948.
And then I would meet tourists who would ignorantly boast of U.S. money having “rebuilt” Europe.
Of all this I had heard nothing in school back in Portland, and I felt betrayed. But I had heard plenty about the supposed six million Jewish victims of the “holocaust.”
I was impressed by the dignified and matter-of-fact way with which the German people accepted their legacy of defeat. What a contrast to the endless wailing’s of the “persecuted” Jews!
Pearson interrupted Weber and asked if the last statement was an anti-Jewish statement. Weber replied that it could be interpreted that way. (25-6534)
Weber continued reading:
Older Germans were, indeed, often reluctant to talk about “those years” because most had given up trying to compete with 30 years of lying propaganda. It was especially futile trying to talk openly with American visitors who already “knew” all about “Nazism.”
My stay in Germany, a brief stint selling magazines in Belgium and France, and then a journey through Spain convinced me that national character and culture were not merely superficial acquisitions which could readily be homogenized, as liberal and Marxist “one worlders” claimed but were instead deep and venerable expressions of different folkish and racial nature.
My keen interest in Africa took me through Morocco and across the Sahara desert to West Africa. In Ghana I obtained a pleasant but unexciting position teaching secondary school to Ashanti teenagers in Kumasi.
In Senegal, Mali, Ivory Coast, and Ghana, I learned that race was far more than just a question of skin colour. I was astonished by the striking similarities in the values and way of life between West Africans and American Blacks. Despite the superficial differences, Negroes on both continents shared very common attitudes toward work, family, music, sex, liquor and property. And Blacks on both sides of the Atlantic exhibited a common deficiency in abstract reasoning ability.
Pearson interrupted Weber and asked if he would agree that that was a racist statement. Weber replied that the statement was essentially accurate. He asked Pearson to define “racist.” Pearson refused to define the word and requested that Weber keep reading.
What a contrast to Europe! In West Africa I came to acutely appreciate the common values and attitudes which men and women of my race had in common on both sides of the north Atlantic and which differed so fundamentally from those of the Blacks around me.
In both Europe and Africa, I admired the sense of folkish identity and kinship which people valued and cultivated. As an American I felt somewhat at a loss coming from a young land with a less-developed cultural heritage and a less well-defined national identity and character. Like many Americans overseas, I became more aware of my cultural and national identity than ever before. Other White Americans and Europeans in Africa were similarly affected, and we stuck together, instinctively affirming a common racial and cultural unity.
My stay in West Africa impressed upon me the futility and galling arrogance of White efforts to “uplift” and “enlighten” the non-White world through foreign-aid programs. Observing the comical and inept Peace Corps in operation did a lot to shake my liberal faith.
I returned to Oregon puzzled and without any clear principles. Eager to understand the social and racial dynamics of urban America, I moved to Chicago for a year. It was the hardest and most bitter year of my life, but there I deepened my awareness and understanding of social, political and racial realities. And I first began to grasp the importance of the Jewish question.
Pearson interrupted and asked Weber what he meant by “the Jewish question.” Weber replied that the term meant the relationship of Jews to non-Jews in society and the role of Jews in society in general. In Weber’s opinion, it was a very important question because Jews played a very important role in American society. There was constant discussion in American newspapers and magazines and by politicians about the role of Jews in American society and in every society in which they lived. Jews themselves talked about this very often. Numerous Jewish leaders had pointed out there was a conflict in loyalty among Jews to their own cultural and racial or ethnic group and to the larger society in which they lived. (25-6538, 6539)
Weber continued reading:
Observing Jews as they shamelessly swindled and bilked the primitive Blacks began to open my eyes. The wealthy, liberal Jews would push for racial integration in the ethnic White neighborhoods of Chicago, while the kosher crowd stayed isolated in their Hyde Park and North Side enclaves. And how they hated Mayor Richard Daley!
Pearson interrupted and asked Weber if he would agree that that was an anti-Jewish statement. Weber replied that it was far less anti-Jewish than numerous statements which had been made by any number of Jewish writers about Germans or about other people, including Americans as a whole. Elie Wiesel had called for hatred against Germans simply because they were Germans. (25-6540)
Weber continued reading:
Daley was devoutly Catholic and instinctively loyal to his race. He skillfully and oftentimes ruthlessly balanced off the many racial and social factions of Chicago and kept his realm running more smoothly and successfully than any other large city in America. The Jews couldn’t understand his skill, and they envied his enormous popularity, even among Blacks.
But even Daley could not keep the lid on the racial volcano. During my Chicago year the old mayor began losing control of the city’s Blacks, and he couldn’t understand or control the furious and violent resistance of Chicago’s Whites to further Black takeover.
It was clear that once Daley passed on, Chicago would go the way of America’s other large cities. Chicago seemed to symbolize both the past and the future. The old mayor personified a dying era. And the passionate and sometimes violent youth of Marquette Park, who successfully halted the Black invasion of the neighborhood, seemed to represent the vanguard of a new America.
I lived in a mixed Italian-Mexican enclave wedged into the vast Black ghetto. During the summer I sold peanuts and candy from a pedal cart in different ethnic neighborhoods. Later, after morning college lectures, I took the subway downtown to work in a State Street office building. I eagerly read every newspaper I could get my hands on.
In Chicago I pondered long and hard over the race question. If races were inherently and fundamentally different and unequal — as my observations were convincing me was the case — then the principle of democracy which rested upon the idea of racial equality was false. Furthermore, I became convinced that government attempts to create an artificial “equality” between naturally unequal races would inevitably lead to disaster.
In 1973 I returned to Europe. After a month travelling around Western Europe, I settled for a year and a half in Munich in order to study at Germany’s largest university.
In the friendly Bavarian capital it was a joy living a student’s life while supporting myself giving private English lessons. My spare time was spent reading, talking for long hours in beer halls and restaurants, attending opera and symphony performances, and visiting political rallies and meetings.
From Europe I gained a more detached and objective perspective on events back home. My studies and my overseas vantage point helped me to understand the direction in which our nation was heading.
But even in Europe the same unmistakable symptoms of decay were visible. Large numbers of racial aliens were streaming northward and westward into the White heartland. Growing swarms of dark East Indians and Africans in Britain, Arabs and Negroes in France, Orientals in Holland, and Turks in Germany were creating severe and almost insoluble problems.
Pearson interrupted Weber and asked if he would agree that that was a racist statement. Weber testified that it was not; it was a statement of fact. (25-6543)
Weber continued reading:
The White birthrate had fallen drastically throughout northern Europe. A lust for wealth and comfort and a deadening of any sense of responsibility to race and nation were the sad legacy of the European defeat of 1945.
In Munich, my disillusionment with the liberal-democratic system grew along with my conviction that a fundamental change of social values was absolutely necessary.
I returned to America wanting to do more than observe. In Washington I met Dr. William Pierce for the first time in the summer of 1975, and I was greatly impressed by his deep understanding, profound intelligence, and courageous dedication. But I still didn’t share his commitment or devotion, and I returned to school.
Weber agreed with Pearson that Pierce was an important person in the National Socialist White People’s Party, for which organization the term “neo-Nazi” would not be an inaccurate description. (25-6544)
After finishing college, I accepted a fellowship for graduate study in history at Indiana University. But during the year and a half I worked on my MA, I grew increasingly restless and fed up with the futility and meaninglessness of academic life. My colleagues and professors resigned themselves to a cynical, self- centered, bourgeois future. What was the point? If things kept on going as they were, neither our race nor our nation would have a future, and whatever we did in our short lives would be pointless.
In graduate school, I became ever more disgusted with the liberal effort to twist and distort history to make it conform to the naive, unrealistic, liberal view of life.
The lies and myth-making were especially frequent when dealing with the Negro in American history. Various obscure Blacks were elevated to undeserved prominence, while White college students learned virtually nothing of the heroic sacrifices at the Alamo and Valley Forge.
While Jews and Blacks blatantly promoted their own biased cultural and racial programs in special studies departments, anti-White and anti-Western professors taught White students to be ashamed of their racial-cultural heritage. Liberals ignored or obscured the fact that our forefathers consciously established America as a nation for White people. Professors were often far more interested in berating the White race for its past “injustices” than in imparting an understanding of the dynamics of history. And while they talked of democracy and the majority, liberal professors looked down with contempt upon the White taxpayers who paid their wages.
Of course, these academic bureaucrats had no real loyalty to America or to the White race. They were interested in job security and academic prestige, but not in the search for historical truth. A study of history, I was convinced, demonstrated conclusively that race-mixing, a mania for equality, and a lack of idealism and heroism were all unmistakable signs of decadence.
Pearson interrupted and asked Weber if he would agree that was a racist statement. Weber replied that he would absolutely not. Pearson put to him that it was racist to suggest that race-mixing was an unmistakable sign of decadence. Weber asked again for a definition of racist and again Pearson refused to give one. (25-6547)
Weber continued reading:
History clearly showed that the future belongs only to those peoples willing to sacrifice and fight for it.
Over the past several years, I had hitchhiked many times across and around the United States. From hundreds of conversations with a wide variety of Americans, I came to feel that our people were caught in the grip of some terrible death-wish. Privately, White men and women across the country expressed to me their disgust, shame and anger at the way things were going. But many older Americans had long ago given up hope that anything could be done, while others lacked the courage to do anything more than complain to friends.
Hearing cowardly and defeatist whining about the futility of it all made me more angry than depressed. I became convinced that our White race was capable of accomplishing any goal which we set for ourselves. What we absolutely needed was firm self-discipline, heroic confidence, and fanatic determination. Even if our race was fated for destruction, our duty must still be to make a stand to redeem our honor before history.
I drew great confidence from a faith in the ultimate victory of right. Our racial struggle was in harmony with the highest laws of Nature itself. I could not believe that our race had been created only to perish in suicidal race-mixing. Providence had destined our kind for much more than that.
As a liberal, I had taken my race, my nation and my cultural heritage for granted. Now I realized that only a conscious and dedicated commitment to our race could prevent our extinction.
My “conversion” over several years had resulted in a rejection of two basic liberal principles: inherent human equality; and human material comfort and happiness as the highest social good.
Pearson interrupted and asked Weber what he was converted to. Weber testified that it was self-explanatory; he came to believe that only a conscious and dedicated commitment to our race could prevent our extinction. He was not converted by Mr. Pierce but came to these views on his own. Pierce was one of many influential people in his life. He had been influenced by many things, as he had tried to explain in the article, through personal experience in Africa, Europe, Chicago and elsewhere. (25-6549 to 6551)
Weber continued reading:
However, I continued to honor several of the older liberal values: devotion to truth, no matter where it may lead; social and individual justice within the context of the community; protection and encouragement of productive labor; rejection of uncontrolled and irresponsible capitalism.
I had no right to complain about the slow extinction of our race or the degenerate trend throughout the Western world unless I myself was willing to at least speak out. I came to feel that it was not enough to hold back and silently hope that others would do what I was afraid to do. I realized that I had no special right to sit on the sidelines as a cowardly spectator. My responsibility for the future of our White race and American homeland was at least as great as any other man’s.
Reading the National Alliance newspaper greatly helped to clarify my thinking. No other periodical I read addressed the fundamental issues of our time as truthfully and as lucidly.
Finishing my Master’s degree in history in December of last year, I moved to the Washington, D.C. area at the beginning of this year to devote my talent and energy to what I firmly believe is the most vital and important work in America today.13
The work of the National Alliance was educational, not political, said Weber. It tried to persuade people by argument and information that the integrity and preservation of our race and culture were worthy goals. Weber believed that in society today there were many trends which were very destructive to social, cultural and racial harmony and it was important to be aware of those things. (25 6553)
Pearson put to Weber that the race ideology he had espoused in his article was the same one that Verrall espoused in Did Six Million Really Die?. Weber answered that it was very dangerous to try to put together in one pot all those who believed in the integrity and preservation of their own race and culture. Weber believed in racial integrity for all peoples because he believed the greatest benefits to all humanity came when nations were true to themselves; that applied to the Jewish people as well. He did not hate or have any animosity towards any individual or race because they were different. At the time he wrote the article, he was very concerned about the preservation of his own race and culture. Weber pointed out that the racial views expressed by Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt were far more emphatic than what he had written. (25-6554, 6555)
Pearson turned to Did Six Million Really Die? and read an extract under the heading “The Race Problem Suppressed” at page 4:
Many countries of the Anglo-Saxon world, notably Britain and America, are today facing the gravest danger in their history, the danger posed by the alien races in their midst. Unless something is done in Britain to halt the immigration and assimilation of Africans and Asians into our country, we are faced in the near future, quite apart from the bloodshed of racial conflict, with the biological alteration and destruction of the British people as they have existed here since the coming of the Saxons. In short, we are threatened with the irrecoverable loss of our European culture and racial heritage. But what happens if a man dares to speak of the race problem, of its biological and political implications? He is branded as that most heinous of creatures, a “racialist”. And what is racialism, of course, but the very hallmark of the Nazi! They (so everyone is told, anyway) murdered Six Million Jews because of racialism, so it must be a very evil thing indeed.
Pearson put to Weber that the words used by Verrall in the pamphlet were very similar to the words Weber wrote in the National Vanguard. Weber replied that there were many similarities but that it was important to realize that in this passage Verrall had injected an issue into the pamphlet which was really a secondary issue. There were many individuals who supported revisionism, said Weber, who completely rejected the views expressed by Verrall in this passage and the views expressed by himself in the National Vanguard article. What Verrall had written was extraneous to the central thesis of the booklet. (25-6555, 6556)
Pearson suggested that the declared goal of Weber in his article in the National Vanguard was to win converts to his race ideology. Weber replied that he became interested in the Holocaust issue at the end of the period that he was affiliated with the National Alliance. He ultimately parted company with the organization because they were not interested in the issue. (25-6557)
Pearson put to Weber that he was prepared to use the initial credibility that his M.A. in history gave him to further his cause of racial ideology. Weber denied this, repeating that it was his concern over the Holocaust issue which led to a big disagreement with the National Alliance and his departure from the organization. He had not been affiliated with the National Alliance for more than eight years and had written nothing on the whole issue of race since that period of time. (25-6558)
Pearson suggested that Weber had realized, as did Verrall, that the Holocaust was a significant hurdle to winning converts to his racist ideology. If that was his main motive, replied Weber, he would have been writing in the intervening years about race and he hadn’t. The revisionist movement was not a racialist movement. It had people in it with every possible racial, political, ideological and religious views. (25-6558)
Pearson reiterated that Weber had realized that he didn’t have a chance of winning right- thinking people to his cause until he could cover up the monstrous crime that Nazi racism ideology produced. Weber replied that that was absolutely wrong. (25 6559)
Pearson put to Weber that when he had his “conversion,” he commenced his study of the Holocaust. Weber testified that at the time he wrote the article he thought the Holocaust was probably exaggerated but essentially believed in it; he believed the tremendous over-emphasis given to the subject was wrong, given the terrible suffering of other peoples during the war. (25- 6559 to 6562)
Pearson produced an article published in the Spotlight on December 24, 1979 which Weber agreed he had written. Pearson read the following extract:
Virtually the entire body of “evidence” and “documentation” offered today for the alleged extermination of six million Jews by the Germans was first presented to the world at a series of elaborately- staged trials held in Germany in the aftermath of World War II. The victorious Allies held thousands of German military and civilian leaders before the Show Trials on absurd and hypocritical charges of “war crimes” and “crimes against humanity.” It was these “trials” which first gave the “Holocaust” story legitimacy and worldwide publicity. A tremendous public relation campaign conducted ever since has engraved that story so deeply into the public consciousness that to challenge it is considered somewhat akin to claiming that the earth is flat. But a careful examination of the origins of the “Holocaust” legend in the famous Nuremberg trials and other “war crimes” trials reveals just how fraudulent the entire story really is.14
Pearson suggested the article was a complete public denial of the Holocaust. Weber disagreed. At that time he still believed perhaps there was some policy or programme to exterminate the Jews. But he had already come to believe that many important aspects of the story were not true. In Weber’s opinion, it was not really crucial when he came to reject the entire story. It was a continuing process. Spotlight was published by Liberty Lobby. The newspaper had published about ten or twelve articles by Weber. He didn’t agree with everything that was published in the newspaper, just as he didn’t agree with everything published in the New York Times where he had had a letter published. Weber tried to reach other people with what he was trying to say and the Spotlight was willing to publish what he had to write on this issue. Weber did not agree with everything Liberty Lobby did or stood for. It had run numerous articles by Jewish writers. It was hard to call a publication anti-Semitic if it also prominently displayed writings by writers who were Jewish and were very pro-Jewish. (25-6564 to 6568)
Pearson produced another article written by Weber for the Spotlight and published in the August 9, 1982 edition entitled “The Zionists have political control of Nebraska.” Pearson read excerpts to the court:
When you think of the passions of political Zionism in the U.S., you probably think first of such States as New York and California, but, strangely, the percentage of Jews in the States’ population has little to do with the control exercised in every facet of your daily life by…loyalists. Nebraska, in the heart of our nation, is a case in point. How about your State?…Unlike New York or California, the “corn husker state” has no concentrated Jewish community. The Jewish population is a mere 0.5%, and yet a small group of Zionists have been able to gain political dominance in Nebraska. Both of the State’s U.S. Senate seats are held by staunch Zionists. The highest judicial official, the Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court, is a Zionist. The State Democratic Party is firmly controlled by Zionists.15
Pearson suggested that in the article Weber said that all American Jews were Zionists. Weber testified that not all Zionists were Jews and not all Jews were Zionists. For example, both of Nebraska’s U.S. Senate seats were held by Zionists; only one was a Jew. (25-6570)
Pearson asked if Weber still denied he was anti-Jewish. Weber replied that it was less sensible to say he was anti-Jewish than to say Elie Wiesel was anti-American. If someone alleged, as Elie Wiesel and many other prominent Jews had done, that the American government was callous and shared a historical guilt for the Holocaust by allowing the Germans to exterminate 6 million Jews, then one could say that statement was anti-American. In Weber’s opinion, Zionism was ultimately dangerous for Jews. It was Jewish nationalism. A person could very reasonably take the view, as Weber had, that to be anti-Zionist was actually pro-Jewish. Weber did a great deal of research into the article before writing it. It was a big issue at the time in Nebraska and the most salient information came from people in the state itself. (25-6571, 6573)
Pearson put to Weber that his race ideology had been a matter of conversation between himself and Ernst Zündel. Weber replied there had never been such a conversation between them and he resented the use of the loaded term “race ideology.” This ended the cross-examination by the Crown Attorney. (25-6574)
Defense attorney Doug Christie rose to re-examine the witness. Christie turned first to the Galicia document introduced by the Crown during Weber’s cross examination. Weber testified that Galicia (a not very large province formerly in Poland and presently in the Soviet Union) was noted for being a poor area. (25-6576)
Christie asked how much broken gold the document said was taken from the Jews in this area of Galicia.16
Weber testified that the document stated that the Germans seized 44,655 kg. of broken gold from the Jews of Galicia. This amounted to about 29.5 tons of pure gold which was, in Weber’s opinion, a preposterous figure. The document also alleged that no less than 11,730 kg. of dental gold in dentures was seized. This amounted to 7.5 tons of gold. The document alleged that 97,581 kg. of gold coins were taken, and if one assumed 20-carat gold rather than 24-carat gold, this would amount to 90.7 tons of 24-carat gold. In addition, there was a reference to the seizure of 6,640 kg. of gold necklaces which would be the equivalent of 4.8 tons of 24-carat gold. (25-6579 to 6581)
In Weber’s opinion, these figures showed that the document was either greatly exaggerated or not genuine. Altogether, according to this document, the confiscated gold from Galicia was 134,311 kg. or 140.7 tons of gold. That was equal to 4,726,595 ounces. At today’s prices, this gold would be worth about $2,647,160,000.00 in Canadian funds or $6,095 for each allegedly evacuated person in the document. (25 6581)
To put it in perspective, said Weber, the total amounts of gold mined in Canada last year in about 25 large mining operations was about 75 tons, but according to the Galicia document, the amount of gold supposedly confiscated in Galicia in one year from the Jews was almost 150 tons or about twice what Canada mined in an entire year. (25-6582)
Weber testified that the Galicia document was quoted occasionally by Holocaust historians but was given no great weight or emphasis. In fact, the document was not consistent with the Holocaust story because the document indicated that any severe measures taken against Jews were done for specific reasons and not simply because they were Jews. Other portions of the document referred specifically to the necessity of maintaining good clothing, housing and medical care for Jews in the camps listed in the document. (25-6600)
Christie turned to the subject of Weber’s previous writing career. Weber testified that he was affiliated with the National Alliance for less than two years and had not had any affiliation with the organization since. After he left the organization, he was a writer for a time for a newsletter entitled Middle East Perspective. The periodical was edited and published by Dr. Alfred Lilienthal, who was a well-known American Jewish writer and historian. Lilienthal was an anti- Zionist with whom Weber continued to have cordial relations. (25-6582, 6583)
Christie asked if Weber had been able to find evidence that Oswald Pohl was tortured. Oswald Pohl, said Weber, was the German official who was in overall charge of the German concentration camp system. He wrote a statement, dated June 1, 1948 (after he was tried at Nuremberg but before he was finally executed by the Americans in 1951) in which he described his mistreatment by British military personnel in 1946. He was kicked and repeatedly beaten by British soldiers. He lost at least two teeth in these beatings, and he was then turned over to the American military. Pohl held the rank of general in the German armed forces and his treatment by the British and Americans was completely illegal according to international agreements on the treatment of prisoners-of-war. (25-6584)
Weber read from his translation of the Pohl statement:
As a result of the brutal physical mistreatment in Nenndorf and the treatment in Nuremberg, I was emotionally a complete wreck. I was 54 years old. I had served my country for 33 years without dishonour, and I did not feel that I had committed any crime.
Pohl was intensively interrogated for more than half a year in sessions that lasted for hours. There were about 60 to 80 interrogation sessions altogether. Pohl reported that although he was generally not physically mistreated in Nuremberg, as he had been at Nenndorf, he was nevertheless subjected to the less noticeable but, as he put it, “in their own way much more brutal emotional tortures.” (25-6584, 6585)
During his interrogation by the Americans, Pohl was accused of killing 30 million people and of condemning 10 million people to death. The interrogators knew very well, said Pohl, that such accusations were lies and tricks meant to break down his resistance. Pohl declared:
Because I am not emotionally thick-skinned, these diabolical intimidations were not without effect, and the interrogators achieved what they wanted; not the truth but rather statements that served their needs.
During this period of interrogation, Pohl had no access to an attorney or any other help. He was never formally charged with anything, nor even told precisely why he was being interrogated. (25-6585) Pohl stated that the American prosecution of the trial used false affidavits which he was forced into signing. Pohl declared:
This is how affidavits were produced and presented which contain provable errors of fact regarding essential points.
Pohl also said that other phony affidavits were produced for his trial from others and gave specific examples of these. Pohl stated that the German defence was not allowed free access to the German wartime documents which were used by the prosecution freely and to the maximum effect. This fact had been confirmed subsequently by historians. Pohl declared in his statement that the number of those who died of all causes in all the German concentration and labour camps between 1933 and 1945 was 200,000 to 250,000 and he explained the reason for this regrettably high figure. (25-6586)
Weber turned to the subject of Konrad Morgen and pointed out that Morgen testified that to the best of his knowledge there was no German policy of extermination. Almost no one in Germany, said Weber, was in a better position to know the truth about that matter than Morgen. Morgen also testified at Nuremberg about the conditions in the camps which produced the terrible photographs of dead and dying inmates taken at the end of the war by the Allies. (25- 6588) It was not surprising that Morgen might have believed that inmates were being gassed at Monowitz because most of the inmates themselves believed the same thing. It was likely that Morgen based his belief on what he had been told. Weber reiterated that today no historian claimed that Jews were gassed at Monowitz. (25-6588)
In volume 8 of the NMT “Green Series,” page 606, [Nuremberg document NI-11696] there was the testimony of a British sergeant named Charles J. Coward who worked at Monowitz. He testified that everyone at the camp talked about gassings:
Even while still at Auschwitz we got radio broadcasts from the outside speaking about the gassings and burnings at Auschwitz. I recall one of these broadcasts was by [British foreign secretary] Anthony Eden himself. Also, there were pamphlets dropped in Auschwitz and the surrounding territory, one of which I personally read, which related what was going on in the camp at Auschwitz. These leaflets were scattered all over the countryside and must have been dropped from planes. They were in Polish and German. Under those circumstances, nobody could be at or near Auschwitz without knowing what was going on.
In Weber’s opinion, it was clear that Konrad Morgen believed there were exterminations going on at Monowitz for reasons which had to do with propaganda and not, as historians today had shown, with gassings at Monowitz. (25-6589)
Weber indicated that he was wrong to agree with Pearson on the use of “final solution” as a euphemism. Weber had looked up the term “euphemism” in the Random House Dictionary and found its definition to be: “The substitution of a mild, indirect or vague expression for one thought to be offensively harsh or blunt.” The term “final solution,” said Weber, was just the opposite of a euphemism because the term was more blunt or more sinister sounding than the words “deportation” or “evacuation.” The Germans often used terms which sounded very harsh and very strong. (25-6590, 6591)
Michael Marrus (the author of The Holocaust in History) quoted documents very selectively and even deceitfully, to cover up what the “final solution” programme actually was. On page 32 of his book, Marrus, in a typical way, quoted from the letter by Hermann Göring to Reinhard Heydrich of July 31, 1941, leaving out those portions which made it clear what the “final solution” was — solving the Jewish question “by evacuation and emigration.” By leaving that portion out of his book , Marrus left the impression that the term was a euphemism which meant extermination. (25-6592) The Wannsee Conference protocol also made it clear what the term meant. Weber quoted from the document:
The emigration program has now been replaced by the evacuation of Jews to the East as a further solution possibility in accordance with previous authorization by the Führer.
Weber noted that the official Nuremberg translation of the Wannsee Conference document, found at page 213 of volume 13 of the NMT “Green Series,” left out the translation of two important words bei Freilassung which meant “upon release.” (25 6592) The Wannsee Conference document implied that the German government intended to free the Jews and have them removed from Europe after the war. One of the men who was at the conference, Martin Luther of the German Foreign Office, wrote his memorandum of August 21, 1942. This referred to a territorial “final solution” and stated that after the war:
All Jews would have to leave Europe. This was an unalterable decision of the Führer, and also the only way to master this problem.
Weber did not believe the Holocaust was invented by a so-called Zionist conspiracy to make money for Israel. Weber testified that it had been suggested by Pearson that he and other revisionists supported this view of the Holocaust to somehow profit. This, said Weber, was both ludicrous and contemptible. Not only himself but other revisionists had suffered tremendously. One important Jewish revisionist, J.G. Burg, was beaten up by thugs as he was praying at his wife’s grave in Munich. Wilhelm Stäglich, a West German historian, had his pension cut and his doctoral title revoked as a result of speaking out on the Holocaust issue. Professor Robert Faurisson, another prominent revisionist historian, was beaten several times; he was dragged into court repeatedly by powerful and influential organizations; his family life had been thrown into turmoil. Weber himself had received numerous death threats as a result of writing on the issue and had forsaken a much more financially lucrative life than the one he had. He had not received $150.00 an hour to testify at this trial.17 In fact, he had received no compensation whatsoever beyond the satisfaction of helping in an effort which he believed warranted the worthy support of all Canadians and Americans who believed in free speech. (25-6593, 6594)
Weber’s impression of Richard Verrall, from talking to him, was that he was a very private man. He didn’t like lots of attention and controversy. He finally revealed his authorship of Did Six Million Really Die? in a British court case he brought in an attempt to get more money out of the publication. He was astounded when the booklet turned out to be as successful as it was. (25-6596)
With respect to the writing of history, Weber believed it was not possible for any human being to be completely objective. People brought to whatever they wrote their own backgrounds, views and biases. One tried to overcome them and take them into account, but he did not believe there was any work of history which could be called objective. (25-6601, 6602)
1 This testimony caused a commotion among the Jewish observers in the courtroom. Immediately, Judge Thomas excused the jury and demanded to know from defense attorney Doug Christie what the relevance of the evidence was. Christie indicated that it put in context the situation of the Einsatzgruppen in relation to guerrilla warfare in terms that ordinary laymen could understand. Thomas replied: “Well, I will think about this during the recess, but I really don’t feel that it’s appropriate to attempt to smear this trial or the issues that are before this jury by reference to modern events, and I fail to see why a reference to something that’s taking place in Israel today involving a state that didn’t exist at the time of the Second World War, involving a group of people and issues that are far removed from the issues that are before this court, now I don’t feel that those issues ought to be brought into this case. As a matter of fact, they will not be brought into this case unless it can be established they’re relevant. I don’t appreciate that person bringing that matter into this court. I’m going to consider it as to what I’ll tell the jury…” Thomas held, after the recess, that “there’s no need for this witness to bring into this courtroom the present environment in Israel. It’s not relevant to this trial. Any admissibility of that evidence and probative value would be so tenuous, and I certainly have no intention of turning this courtroom into a forum for venting of those views…This witness is not to bring into this trial, in an extemporaneous way, any reference to matters of the Israeli/Palestine confrontation at the present time unless you can establish its relevance.” (23-5698 to 5701)]
2 In the fall of 1989, the Soviet Union announced that 46 volumes of the Auschwitz “death books” were being released to the International Red Cross. The volumes, captured upon the camp’s liberation by the Soviets in 1945, had been kept in a Soviet archive and had been inaccessible to researchers for over forty years. These books listed some 74,000 deaths at the camp during the war. (Globe and Mail, Friday, September 22, 1989).
3 Sylvia Rothchild, Voices from the Holocaust (New York: New American Library, 1981). Marika Frank Abrams stated: “Let me explain that even though I had been in Auschwitz I did not know about the gas chambers. Can you imagine that?”
4 “In the spring of 1942 an extermination camp was established at Treblinka. It contained 10 death chambers and opened up for business in the early autumn of 1943. Death was inflicted here by gas and steam, as well as by electric current.” (Concurring Opinion by Judge Michael A. Musmanno in the case of Oswald Pohl, NMT vol.
5 “Green Series”, page 1133) 5 Not compared with original.
6 “Two-thirds of the Jews in Europe exterminated, more than 6 million of them on the killers’ own figures. Murder conducted like some mass production industry in the gas chambers and the ovens of Auschwitz, Dachau, Treblinka, Buchenwald, Mauthausen, Majdanek, and Oranienburg.” Closing address to the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg by Chief Prosecutor of the United Kingdom, Sir Hartley Shawcross. (IMT vol. XIX, page 434.)
7 Olga Wormser-Migot, Le Systeme Concentrationnaire Nazi (1933-1945) (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1968).
8 Paul Rassinier, The Holocaust Story and the Lies of Ulysses (Costa Mesa: Institute for Historical Review, 1978), pp. 129-130.
9 Ibid., p. 130.
10 This evidence was stopped by Judge Ron Thomas after objection by Crown Attorney Pearson. Thomas ruled that: “The accused is charged with publishing a false statement knowing it was false. This evidence is not relevant to the charge and will not be admitted.” (24-6241, 6242). 11 In fact, the booklet did mention this fact at page 14.
12 Pearson requested Weber to read the entire article to the court. Defence attorney Doug Christie objected on the grounds that the political beliefs of Weber were irrelevant to the truth or falsity of his testimony. Christie pointed out that attacks on political beliefs seemed to be the purpose and object of the prosecution as a whole. Judge Ron Thomas disregarded the objection and instructed Weber: “Please proceed. Read it.”
13 Not compared with original.
14 Not compared with original.
15 Not compared with original.
16 Upon objection by the Crown, Judge Thomas asked Christie what the relevance of the question was. Christie indicated that he wished to ask the witness questions about the statistics in the document to show that the document was ridiculous and therefore inaccurate. Thomas replied in sarcastic tones: “All right, go ahead. I just have to make a note here: ‘The entire document is ridiculous’…’The entire document is ridiculous’. All right, go ahead.” (25-6576 to 6578)
17 This was the amount paid by the Ontario government to Crown witness Christopher Browning for his testimony at the trial.