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Documents on the "Holocaust"

Discussion on the 1947 British Army war crimes trial of officials of the Tesch & Stabenow firm, Hamburg

[Trial summary] [Letter]

Inquiry (Fri, 10 Dec 1999) on the Tesch Trial by an Expert, "Sam Crowell": "Something Fishy Here, I Think"

I HAVE been reviewing the transcripts and associated materials from the Tesch Weinbacher trial and there are a couple of things that strike me as odd.

The first thing is that the exhibits for the trial appear to have disappeared. I noticed this earlier, and thought they simply hadn't been copied in this set. But now I have found a handwritten note dated October 8, 1948, saying that the premises have been searched for the exhibits without success.

The second thing is that one of the exhibits is a letter to the Reichkommissar Ostland, no date, to the firm of Tesch and Stabenow. The exhibit was read into the record but the minutes of the record do not include the text.

However -- and this is the third thing -- in the direct examination of Tesch by his lawyer, Zippel, the letter comes up, thus:

Q Yesterday the prosecuting officer read a letter from the General Kommissar of Riga concerning the delivery of gas chambers to
A. Yes.
Q. How large should these gas chambers be?
A. Ten cubic meters.
Q. What was the purpose of these gas chambers?
A. These gas chambers should be used for the delousing of the civil population.
Q. Had these gas chambers been constructed at [X]
A. No, they were delivered but I think they were returned to Koenigsberg through the events of the war.
[source: PRO, WO 235, 83 X/K 4578, p. 30106]

The strange thing to me is that the destination of the gas chambers is not listed, there is an "X" barely visible, but no place name.

  • We also know from this trial that Tesch traveled to Riga in Fall 1941 to instruct about nine SS men and policemen on carrying out delousings and disinfection.
  • We furthermore know from Drohsinn's affidavit during the Appeals that there were several very large "gassing rooms" in Riga and environs. (Irving has this)
  • We have about 12 pages of materials from Tesch to and fro with RK Ostland in January February 1942 about gassing operations in Riga (Irving has this)
  • By the way, the USHRI has microfilm records from Riga which describe Lageberichte from October 5, 1941, discussing the "Beiseitigen von alten Juden" as well as typhus. This from abstract: haven't seen documents.

All of this material, I believe, really does converge on a fumigation interpretation of NO-365 (Wetzel-Lohse): but I have argued this already. But I am beginning to think now that there may have been some deliberate suppression of information as well.

Further comments (Fri, 10 Dec 1999) on the above summary by an Expert, "Sam Crowell":

In my excitement I failed to note the interior date: the letter from Testa to Riga is dated November 5: this is ten days after the date of the Wetzel draft. This proves, first of all, concern about disinfection in Riga very close to our target date, and, furthermore, is closer to the date than anything else either of a disinfection or "gas van" nature.

FYI, T-Gas, Ethylene Oxide, and Tritox were three other disinfection gases which Testa sold, and which Tesch used to give people training in how to use.

No. 490, Dec 13, 1491: decodes of Nov 13, 1941. Item 10:

"SS Oberabschnitt Nordsee, Hamburg 13, Firma Tesch Stabenow, Hamburg 1, Betr Brief Vom 5. Nov.

"Erbitte Sofort Nachricht wann Zyklonversand erfolgt ist, und wann mit Teilversand von Tegas, Athyleno. D und Trito gerechnet werden kann, damit Dr Tesch, der in Riga Ausbildung ...; [corrupt groups ]... sämtliche ... sind sehr nötig. Dr Tesch bittet seine Post hierher zu senden. Leitender Arzt, bei Höherem SS und Pol.führer Riga."

Further comments (Fri, 10 Dec 1999) on the above summary by an Expert, "Sam Crowell":

I am pleased at the way the police decodes help pin down the date of Tesch and Stabenow's involvement in using Zyklon in Riga, something some of us have been discussing for months.

I draw your attention to the following data:

  1. The testimony of Zaun, the accountant, in whose examination and cross-examination one can almost reconstruct the entire month by month record of Zyklon deliveries;
  2. The discussion, by both Tesch and Weinbacher, that Lublin was an SS clothing depot. (Testimony of T & W are very important and good);
  3. The further discussion by T & W that Lublin's delousing chamber was converted in 1944 to Areginal (carbon tetrachloride, which requires regulated high temps, dispersants (e.g., CO2), and/or pipes for proper use);
  4. The claim by both T & W that Auschwitz was a transit camp (hotly disputed by HM prosecutor);
  5. The discussion with one witness where "Entwesung" or "gassing" (I forget which) is explained to mean gassing the clothes in one part of the building while showering the people in another;
  6. Note that the prosecution essentially dropped Riga from the accusation in its summation, the case came to focus solely on Auschwitz. Note also the omissions in the text I have mentioned previously as well as the missing exhibits;
  7. Something of a side issue, but relevant to the conduct of the trial, was the prosecution's repeated attempts to besmirch the defendant Drohsinn by threatening to show the court a number of photographs which Drohsinn had taken of himself and his wife engaged in sexual activity and which the Field Police had seized. The court mercifully declined all of these requests, but the ghost of Roger Casement rises again. (Drohsinn was acquitted and went on to take over the firm later on.)

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