The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 2000/01/13

THE PRESIDENT: When I said you could make your comments, I
didn't mean you could go on giving the details of the hunger

THE WITNESS: My Lord, I just wanted to point out that what
has been testified by the witness is incorrect; that I was
the leader in the resistance and that I was still in the
barracks. I had to be carried from the barracks on a
stretcher. None of us could walk any more at that time.

Point 2: I talked with a cousin of Karwinski again and again
later on. He was in charge of the social insurance
department at Linz. He told me that his cousin,

                                                  [Page 302]

that is the witness mentioned here, never had been at
Mauthausen, that he was at Dachau, from the day of his
detention. There is a lot of difference between Mauthausen
and Dachau, for he was committed as a former member of the
Austrian Government who had committed crimes against
National Socialism. He was arrested by the R.S.H.A., which
was already in existence, and not by some Austrian office. I
never saw this man afterwards, and I never visited Dachau.
It should, therefore, be easy to determine whether this man
was in Dachau or in Mauthausen from the beginning of his
detention. If he was in Dachau, as I am charging, then
everything is a lie. If he was in Mauthausen, it must be
first determined whether he is not confusing me with another
man. That proof - whether he has erred in identification, is
not my business. The prosecution should attempt to find out
whether he was in Dachau from the very beginning - for I
know he was in Dachau; he was arrested in Innsbruck when
trying to escape to Switzerland, his cousin had let me know
that when asking me to intervene on his behalf. I could not
intervene because the man was transported to Dachau directly
via Innsbruck-Mittenwald. Thus, he was out of my sphere and
power as the then State Secretary for Security of the
Austrian Government.

THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.

(The Tribunal adjourned until 14.10 hours.)

THE PRESIDENT: Colonel Amen, I suppose the defendant wants
to say something about these other documents. He had
answered the one, had he not?

COLONEL AMEN: I do not know whether he had finished, your


Q. Had you finished with the affidavit or the statement of

A. Your Lordship, I had not quite.

Q. Go on then.

A. I have no longer the document before me and I request
that it be given back to me. May I please ask you to return
it to me?

Q. Yes, it is coming.

(Witness handed document.)

A. This document has not been shown to me during previous
interrogatories before the trial. Otherwise I would have
immediately answered with a request that the cousin of the
witness Karwinski, who was chief of the Social Security
Department at Linz and who has the same surname, be called
as a witness and be asked whether it is correct that he
expressly told me that this Karwinski was detained at Dachau
and never at Mauthausen. I should very much like to add that
the witness Dr. Skubl, who will be appearing before the
Tribunal in another matter, can probably make a statement on
the same matter and particularly regarding the fact that
this witness, Karwinski, was arrested near the Swiss border
on the occasion of his escape after the Anschluss and that
he was taken from there to Dachau.

The reason why he was taken to Dachau is not exactly known
to me, but Dr. Skubl will be able to give information on
that subject, presumably to the effect that the intention
was to prevent any intervention from Austria in connection
with this former member of the Austrian Government, since
Himmler was of the opinion that something might be attempted
on Karwinski's behalf by the new Austrian Government.

Q. Your counsel can apply to call any witnesses that you
want in rebuttal. He can make application for that request.
It is not necessary to go into that now.

A. Very good, your Lordship.

I should like to make the following statement regarding the
other two documents. I declare their entire contents to be
untrue and incorrect. Had they been put before me in the
interrogatories, then I would, as I did in other cases, have
referred to the witness Zutter and his evidence, and I would
have made an urgent request that this witness be brought
face to face with me. Regarding the witness Zutter, I have
asked the prosecutor, who holds the rank of major and is
sitting at the table

                                                  [Page 303]

over there, at least twenty times that this witness who is
making such serious statements against me be brought face to
face with me. Today's prosecutor, Colonel Amen, was also
present when I made that request at the time the question of
Mauthausen was discussed. These gentlemen retired to consult
with a third officer and discussed, in English, as to
whether or not Ziereis and Zutter could be called in. Both
were in this prison. All their statements are untrue.

Q. I have already told you that your counsel can apply to
call any witnesses that you wish in rebuttal.

A. I shall ask my counsel to apply for the calling of those
two witnesses.



Q. Defendant, who was responsible for the order to kill all
inmates at Mauthausen concentration camp shortly before the
end of the war?

DR. KAUFFMANN: Mr. President, may I say a few words in
connection with these two documents?

Only now have they been introduced into the trial for the
first time, and only now is it possible for me to discuss
these serious accusations with the defendant. He also tells
me that he denies the truth of these statements. I think I
should be neglecting my duty as defence counsel if I did not
ask immediately that these witnesses be heard. It may be
that the prosecution later on -

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Kauffmann, what is the point of delaying
the trial? I have just said that you might make application
and you know perfectly well that application has to be made
in writing.

I have said twice to the witness that you, Dr. Kauffmann,
his counsel, can apply for the calling of any witnesses you
like in rebuttal. What is the good of delaying the trial by
getting up and making your application verbally now?

DR. KAUFFMANN: Far be it from me to cause delay, but I
wanted to state here and now that I wanted to call these
witnesses and I shall certainly make application in writing.


Q. Did you understand the question, defendant?

A. Yes. You asked me who had given the order for the killing
of the inmates at Mauthausen at the end of the war, and to
that I reply that such an order is unknown to me. I only
gave one order with regard to Mauthausen and that was to the
effect that the entire camp and all detainees were to be
surrendered to the enemy without any ill treatment. This
order was dictated by me in the presence of the witness Dr.
Hoettl and taken to Mauthausen by courier. I draw your
attention to the statement of Hoettl in which he confirms
that fact. A questionnaire has been sent to a second person
by my defence counsel. I requested a similar statement from
him, but it is still unanswered.

Q. I did not ask you about that order. I asked you about an
order to kill all inmates at Mauthausen concentration camp
shortly before the end of the war. Who was responsible for
that order? Were you?

A. No.

Q. You are acquainted with the person who tells the story,

A. Yes, I knew Ziereis.

Q. And you had your picture taken with him and with Himmler,
and this is now in evidence before this Tribunal. Do you
recall that?

A. I have not seen the picture. It was handed to the
Tribunal while I was in the hospital.

Q. Well, never mind the picture then.

COLONEL AMEN: I ask to have the defendant shown Document
3870-PS, which will be Exhibit USA 797.

Now, if the Tribunal pleases, this is a fairly long document
which I do not propose to read at length, but it is one of
the more important documents in the

                                                  [Page 304]

case, and so I hope that the Tribunal will read the entire
statement, even though I do not bring it all out today in
the interest of saving time.

THE PRESIDENT: Is it a new document?

COLONEL AMEN: A new document, your Lordship.

THE PRESIDENT: Is it in German?


(Witness is handed the document.)


Q. This, you will note, defendant, refers to a dying
confession of Ziereis, as reported to the individual making
the affidavit, and I call your attention, first, to the last
two paragraphs on the first page which we will read

  "There was one S.S. man for ten prisoners. The highest
  number of prisoners was about 17,000, not including the
  branch camps. The highest number in Camp Mauthausen, the
  branch camps included, was about 95,000.
  The total number of prisoners who died was 65,000. The
  complement was made up of Totenkopf (Dead Head), Units,
  numbering 5,000 men, comprising guards and the command

And, now, at the middle of the next page, the paragraph

  "According to an order by Himmler, I was to liquidate all
  prisoners on the instructions of S.S. Obergruppenfuehrer
  Dr. Kaltenbrunner; the prisoners were to be led into the
  tunnels of the Bergkristall works of Gusen and only one
  entrance was to be left open."

A. I haven't yet found the passage.

Q. It's in the middle of Page 2. Have you got it?

A. Yes, sir.

  Q. "Then I was to blow up this entrance with some
  explosive and thus cause the death of the prisoners. I
  refused to carry out this order. This meant the
  extermination of the prisoners in the so-called 'mother
  camp,' Mauthausen, and in the camps Gusen I and Gusen II.
  Details of this are known to Herr Wolfram and S.S.
  Obersturmfuehrer Eckermann.
  A gassing plant, camouflaged as a bathroom, was built in
  Concentration Camp Mauthausen by order of the former
  garrison doctor, Dr. Krebsbacher. Prisoners were gassed
  in this camouflaged bathroom. In addition to that, a
  specially built automobile ran between Mauthausen and
  Gusen, and in this prisoners were gassed during the
  journey. The idea for the construction of this automobile
  was Dr. Wasicki's, S.S. Untersturmfuehrer and Pharmacist.
  I, myself, never put any gas into this automobile; I only
  drove it, but I knew that prisoners were being gassed.
  The gassing of the prisoners was done at the request of
  S.S. Hauptsturmfuehrer Dr. Krebsbacher.
  Everything that we carried out was ordered by the Reich
  Security Main Office Himmler or Heydrich, also by S.S.
  Obergruppenfuehrer Muller or Dr. Kaltenbrunner, the
  latter being Chief of the Security Police."

Then, passing on to Page 5, just below the centre of the
page, the paragraph commencing "In the early summer of
1943." Have you the place?

A. Yes.

   Q. "In the early summer Of 1943, S.S. Obergruppenfuehrer
   Dr. Kaltenbrunner visited Mauthausen Concentration Camp.
   The Camp Commandant, Ziereis, Gauleiter Eigruber, Chief
   of the Detention Camp, Bachmeyer, and several others
   accompanied Dr. Kaltenbrunner. I saw Dr. Kaltenbrunner
   and the people who accompanied him with my own eyes.
   According to the testimony of the 'Corpse Carriers' at
   that time, the former prisoners Albert Tiefenbacher -
   whose affidavit has been read - present address
   Salzburg; and Johann
                                                  [Page 305]
   Polster, present address Pottendorf near Wiener
   Neustadt, Austria, about fifteen prisoners of the
   detainee class were selected by Unterscharfuehrer
   Winkler, in order to show Dr. Kaltenbrunner three ways
   of extermination, by a shot in the neck, hanging, and
   gassing. Women whose hair had been shorn were among
   those executed and they were killed by shots in the
   neck. The above-mentioned 'Corpse Carriers' were present
   at the execution and had to carry the corpses to the
   crematorium. Dr. Kaltenbrunner went to the crematorium
   after the execution and later he went into the quarry.
   Baldur von Schirach visited the camp in the autumn of
   1944. He, too, went to the detention building and also
   to the crematorium."

Do you still say that you had nothing to do with the order
referred to or the matters set forth in the affidavit?

A. I maintain that most emphatically, and I want to draw
your attention to the fact that you, sir, have said that
this statement was taken when Ziereis was on his death bed,
but you did not say that what you read from Pages 7 and 8,
does not come from Ziereis, but from Hans Marsalek, who is
responsible for these statements. This man, Hans Marsalek,
whom, of course, I have never seen in my life, had been a
detainee in Mauthausen, like the two other witnesses. I have
already expressed my views as to the value of a statement
concerning me from a former concentration camp detainee, and
my inability to speak face to face with this witness who now
confronts me, and my application will be made through my
counsel. I must ask here that I be allowed to confront
Marsalek. Marsalek cannot know of any such order. In spite
of that, he states that he did.

Q. Defendant, Marsalek is merely the individual who took the
dying confession from Ziereis. Do you understand that?

A. No, I do not, because so far it is new to me that the
prosecution was using detainees from concentration camps for
the interrogation of a man who had been shot in the stomach
three times and was dying. I should have thought that such
interrogatories would have been carried out by a man who was
legally trained and who would be in a position to attach the
right value to any statements.

Q. Well, perhaps, defendant, if you were conducting the
prosecution, you would do it differently; but, in any event,
your testimony is that everything in that affidavit which
was read to you is false; is that correct?

A. It is false. I have never given an order to Mauthausen
Camp, with the exception of that one order, which I was
entitled to do on the strength of special powers, and for
the contents and transmission of which I have offered
sufficient evidence. Mauthausen was never under my
jurisdiction in any other way, and I could not issue any
such orders. The prosecution knows perfectly well, and it
must have been proved to it by dozens of witnesses'
statements, that I had never had any authority over

THE PRESIDENT: Defendant, you do not seem to understand what
this document is. It is an affidavit of Hans Marsalek and
paragraph 2 shows the fact that he made the interrogatory of
Ziereis, who was dying, in the presence of the Commander of
an Armoured Division. He sets out what Ziereis said, and
then he goes on to declare, in addition, what is contained
in paragraph 3; and it is perfectly obvious to the Tribunal
that what is said in paragraph 3 is not what Ziereis said,
but what Marsalek said, the person who was making the

A. (continuing): My Lord, may I say in reply that Marsalek,
as a detainee in the camp, was of course not in a position
to know that Ziereis was never under my command. For that
reason alone, it appears likely that Marsalek, when he
questioned Ziereis, could not possibly know the facts of the
case. I have proved to the Tribunal, and to the prosecution,
that no authority was given to me until 9th April.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, I know; that is only a matter of
argument. I was only drawing your attention to the fact that
it is perfectly obvious from the document

                                                  [Page 306]

itself that what Colonel Amen was reading was a statement of
Marsalek and not a statement of Ziereis, which was the point
you were making.


Q. Defendant, do you recall having given an order to the
Commandant of the Mauthausen Concentration Camp on 27th
April, 1945, that at least one thousand persons should be
killed at Mauthausen each day? Is that true or false?

A. I have never given such an order. You know -

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