Testimony about conditions at Mauthausen and Ravensbrueck at Nuremberg Trial
War Crimes Trials, Nuremberg, Germany, January 28, 1946. Dr. Jean Weith testifying in French. He testifies about several visits of high German officials in Mauthausen (Himmler, Kaltenbrunner, Pohl). He confirms that the civil population could have perfectly known about what went on in the camp, because one could see everything from the nearby street. Also, the camp inmates worked in the factories. Even though separated from the workers, there was enough contact, and the workers must have noticed the conditions the prisoners were in. He is also questioned by Kaltenbrunner's counsel, Kurt Kaufmann, who requests that the names of witnesses testifying should be made available to both prosecution and defense one day in advance in order to allow "to the point" questions from both sides. The material is too extensive. 08:13:00 He then (in French) explains that there is a difference between Auschwitz (whose sole purpose was extermination) and Ravensbrueck (where prisoners worked until they died). The Judge tells him to find that out from his witnesses, so at 08:15:25 he turns to Marie-Claude Vaillant Couturier and asks her to describe the conditions of prisoners at the time of liberation in Auschwitz. She testifies that they were left alone in the camp without water but the Russians arrived the next day. When they went to the men's camp the next day, prisoners had been without water or food for five days, many were dead. She could only give the number for the French: 150 out of 400 made it. 08:16:44 WS of court. 08:17:34 German defense lawyer speaks about why a person could not be at court.
1946 January 28
- Accessed at US Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of National Archives & Records Administration
Record last modified: 2020-02-04 10:39:44
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