The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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THE PRESIDENT: What is the date of that?

DR. PANNENBECKER: It is a document which the prosecution has
submitted as 779 - and which was taken from the files of the
Ministry. There is no date on the document but it must have
been in the spring of 1934, as can be seen from the first
sentence of the document. The "Volkischer Beobachter"
mentions the same decree in its issue of 14 April, 1934. I
have included that as Document 32 in the document book; it
will be Exhibit Frick-7.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Pannenbecker, are you offering that as an
exhibit or has it already been put in evidence?

DR. PANNENBECKER: No, it has not, as yet, been submitted. I
offer it as Exhibit 6.

THE PRESIDENT: I am told the date is 12 April.

DR. PANNENBECKER: In the spring of 1934, yes, shortly

THE PRESIDENT: 12 April, 1934.


The "Volkischer Beobachter" also mentions this decree in its
issue of 14 April, 1934. We are concerned with Document 32
of the document book, which will be Exhibit Frick-7. I do
not have to read it in detail.

The same is evident from No. 33 of the book, which will be
Exhibit Frick-8.

Document 34 of the book, which will be Exhibit Frick-9,
shows that the Gestapo actually did not adhere to Frick's
directives and that Frick was powerless in that connection.
Nevertheless, the document appears to me important, because
it shows that Frick tried repeatedly, with great pains, to
counteract the abuses of the Gestapo, which however, with
the support of Himmler, was stronger than he, especially
since Himmler enjoyed the direct confidence of the Fuehrer.

On 17 June, 1936, the affairs of the political police came
under the jurisdiction

                                                  [Page 205]

of the Reich. Himmler was appointed Chief of the German
police and, though formally attached to the Reich Ministry
of the Interior, he was in fact, an independent Police
Minister under the immediate authority of Hitler and, as a
minister, he was privileged to look after his affairs in the
Reich Cabinet himself.

This can be seen from Document 35 of the document book - an
excerpt from the "Reichsgesetzblatt" (Reich Legal Gazette)-
which has been submitted as Document 2073-PS. I do not
believe that I have to give it an exhibit number, because it
is an official announcement in the Reich Legal Gazette.

In this connection the prosecution has submitted Document
1723-PS as Exhibit USA 206. I have entered an extract from
this document as number 36 in the document book in order to
correct an error. The document is an extract from a book
written by Dr. Ley in his capacity as Reich Organisation
Leader. In that book Dr. Ley gives directives to the Party
offices regarding co-operation with the Gestapo, and at the
end of the extract Ley reprinted a decree by Frick which
shows how Frick attempted to counteract the arbitrary
measures of the Gestapo.

However, in presenting evidence on the morning of 13
December, 1945, the prosecution read the entire document as
an order by Frick. I should therefore like to correct that

Since Himmler and the chiefs of the Gestapo did not heed his
general directives, Frick tried, at least in individual
cases, to alleviate conditions in concentration camps, but
generally he was not successful. To quote an example, I have
included - under number 37 of the document book - a letter
by the former Reichstag Delegate Wulle, which he sent to me
of his own accord. This letter will be Exhibit Frick-10. The
letter states:

  "He (Frick) as my former counsel told me, has at various
  times tried to persuade Hitler to release me, but without
  success, since it was Himmler who made all decisions
  regarding concentration camps. However, I owe it to him
  that I have been treated in a comparatively decent manner
  at the Sachsenhausen concentration camp ...
  He stood out from among the Nazi demagogues because of
  his impartiality and reserve; he was a man who by nature
  disapproved any act of violence ...
  Since the spring of 1925 I have been involved in a sharp
  struggle against Hitler and his party. I consider it even
  more to Frick's credit that despite this antagonism and
  his comparatively powerless position with respect to
  Himmler, he tried, in every way, to help my wife and me
  during the bitter years of my imprisonment in a
  camp ... "

The prosecution has asserted, according to the statements
made by the witness Blaha before this Tribunal, that Frick
knew of the conditions in Dachau concentration camp from
having visited it in the first half of the year 1944.

Therefore, with the permission of the Tribunal I submitted
an interrogatory to the witness Gillhuber, who accompanied
Frick on all his trips and ...

THE PRESIDENT: Wait a moment, Dr. Pannenbecker. The Tribunal
consider that they cannot entertain an affidavit upon oath
from the defendant Frick, who is not going into the witness
box to give evidence on oath, unless he is offered as a
witness, in which case he may be cross-examined.

DR. PANNENBECKER: Yes, but the last document was not an
affidavit by Frick, but by, Gillhuber, a witness, who has
received an interrogatory. It is No. 40 of the document
book. I am just informed that, by an oversight this exhibit
has not been included in the book; I shall have to submit it

THE PRESIDENT: Oh, well, tell us what it is.

DR. PANNENBECKER: It is an interrogatory of the witness
Gillhuber, and his answers. Gillhuber, for the personal
protection of the defendant Frick,

                                                  [Page 206]

accompanied him on all his official travels. In answering
the interrogatory, he confirmed the fact that Frick had
never visited the camp. The interrogatory, with the answers,
has still to be submitted in the translation. It is
contained in my book.

THE PRESIDENT: You may read the interrogatory, unless the
prosecution has any objection to its admissibility, or the
terms of it, because the interrogatory has already been
provisionally allowed.

DR. PANNENBECKER: I read, then, from the Frick Document 40,
which becomes Exhibit Frick-11, the following:-

  "Q. For how long, and in what capacity, were you working
  for the defendant Frick?
  A. From 18 March, 1936, until the arrival of the Allied
  Troops on 29 or 30 April, 1945, as an employee of the
  Reich Security Service, I served as guard and escort.
  Q. Did you always accompany him on his travels for his
  A. From 1936 until January, 1942, only intermittently,
  but since January, 1942, as office chief I accompanied
  him on all his trips and flights.
  Q. Do you know whether the defendant Frick visited the
  concentration camp of Dachau, during the first six months
  of 1944?
  A. To my knowledge, Frick did not visit the Dachau
  Q. Would you have known if it he had, and how would you
  have known it?
  A. I would have had to know if he had done so. I was
  always close to him; and my employees would have reported
  it, had he left during my absence.
  Q. Have you still got the log book of the trips you made,
  and can you present it now?
  A. Since about 1941 log books were no longer kept.
  Instead of that monthly reports of trips were sent to the
  Reich Security Service in Berlin. The copies which were
  kept in my office were, according to orders, burned with
  all the rest of the material, in April, 1945.
  Q. Do you know whether the defendant Frick has ever
  visited the Dachau camp?
  A. To my knowledge Frick has never visited the Dachau
  Moosburg, 23 March, 1946. Signed, Max Gillhuber. Signed,
  Leonard N. Dunkel, Lieutenant-Colonel, Infantry."

To comment on the question, whether an official visitor to a
concentration camp could always get a correct picture of the
actual conditions existing there, I ask permission to read
an unsolicited letter which I received a few days ago from a
Catholic Priest, Bernard Ketzlick. This letter which I have
submitted as Frick Supplement 1 ...

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Your Honour, the prosecution lodges an
objection to this because it is a type of evidence that
there is no way of testing. I have a basket of such
correspondence making charges against these defendants,
which I do not think the Tribunal would want to hear. If the
door is open to this kind of evidence, there is no end to

This witness has none of the sanctions, of course, that
assure the verity of testimony, and I think it is
objectionable to go into letters received from unknown

DR. PANNENBECKER: May I say just one word on the subject. I
received the letter so late that I did not have an
opportunity to ask the person concerned to send me an
affidavit. Of course, I am prepared to submit such an
affidavit later, if such an affidavit should have greater
probative value.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal thinks that the letter cannot be

                                                  [Page 207]

but an application can be made in the ordinary way for leave
to put in an affidavit or to call the witness.

DR. PANNENBECKER: Yes. Then, at a later date, I shall submit
a written request.

I shall not read Document 38 of the document book, since it
concerns a statement made by Frick, and I refer, finally, to
an excerpt from the book "Inside Europe," by John Gunther
which will be submitted as Exhibit Frick-12. The excerpt is
contained under No. 39 in the document book. It concerns a
book which appeared originally in the English language, and
I therefore quote it in English:-

"Born in the Palatinate in 1877, Frick studied law and
became a 'Beamter,' an official. He is a bureaucrat through
and through. Hitler is not intimate with him, but he
respects him. He became Minister of the Interior because he
was the only important Nazi with civil service training.
Precise, obedient, uninspired, he turned out to be a
faithful executive he has been called the only honest Nazi."

The last document to which I ask permission to refer is an
extract from the book "To the Bitter End," by Gisevius. I
believe I do not have to quote these passages individually
since the witness himself will be questioned. The extract
will be Exhibit Frick-13.

There are still left two answers to interrogatories by the
witnesses Messersmith and Seger. I ask to be permitted to
read these answers, later, as soon as they have been
submitted to me.

That concludes the presentation of documents. I believe
there would be no purpose in calling the witnesses now.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will now adjourn.

(A recess was taken until 14.00 hours.)

THE PRESIDENT: Are you prepared to call your witness, Dr.

DR. PANNENBECKER: Yes, Mr. President, that is my request. I
now ask permission to call the witness Gisevius. He is the
sole witness in Frick's case. And I have especially selected
witness Gisevius to clarify the question of the distribution
of police power in Germany since he, from the very
beginning, has been on the side of the opposition and is
best qualified to give a picture of the distribution of
power in Germany as it was then.

HANS BERND GISEVIUS, a witness, took the stand and testified
as follows:-


Q. Will you state your full name?

A. Hans Bernd Gisevius.

Q. Will you repeat this oath after me:-

I swear by God, the Almighty and Omniscient, that I will
speak the pure truth and will withhold and add nothing.

(The witness repeated the oath.)

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.



Q. Witness, have you been a member of the N.S.D.A.P. or one
of its affiliated organisations?

A. No.

Q. Is it correct that you personally participated in the
events of the 20 July, 1944, and that you were also in the
O.K.W. at that time?

A. Yes.

Q. How did you get into the police service?

A. In July, 1933, I passed the State examination in law. As
a descendant

                                                  [Page 208]

of an old family of civil servants, I applied for a civil
service appointment in the Prussian administration. I
belonged, at that time, to the German National People's
Party and to the "Stahlhelm" and by the standards of that
day I was considered as politically reliable. Consequently,
at the first stage of my training as a civil servant, I was
assigned to the political police, which meant my entry into
the newly created Secret State Police. In those days I was
very happy to have been assigned to the police service. I
had already, at that time, heard that abominations of all
kinds were going on in Germany. I was inclined to consider
these as the final outburst of that situation, very akin to
civil war, which we had known at the end of 1932 and the
beginning of 1933. So I hoped to contribute to the re-
establishment of a proper executive organisation which would
take care of law, decency and order. But this desire was
doomed to be short-lived.

I had been only two days in this new police office, when I
discovered that incredible conditions existed there. Here
was no police to intervene against riots, murder, illegal
detention and robbery. But a police which protected just the
very people who were guilty of such crimes. Not the guilty
persons were arrested, but those who asked the police for
help. It was not a police which took action against the
crime, but a police whose task seemed to be to hush it up
or, even worse, to sponsor it. For those S.A. and S.S.
commandos who played at being private police, were
encouraged by this so-called Secret State Police and were
given all possible aid. The most terrible and even, for a
newcomer, most obvious thing was that a system of unlawful
detention gained more and more ground, a system which could
not have been more dreadful. The offices of the new State
Police were in a huge building which was however not large
enough to take in all the prisoners. Special concentration
camps for the Gestapo were established, and their names will
go down in history as a shameful blot. These camps were at
Oranienburg, and the Gestapo's private prison in the
Papenstrasse, the Columbia House or, as it was nicknamed
cynically, the "Columbia Bar."

I should like to make it quite clear that this was certainly
little compared to what we all learned later on. But so it
started and I can only convey my personal impression by
describing a brief incident which I remember. After only two
days I asked one of my colleagues, who was also a
professional civil servant - he had been taken over from the
old political police into the new one, and he was one of
those officials who were forced into that office - I asked
him "Tell me, please; am I here in a police office or in a
robber's den?" The answer I received was "You are in a
robber's den and you can expect to see much more yet."

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