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Eichmann Trial -- Sessions 41 and 42 -- Testimony of H. Grueber and C. Salzberger

Film | Accession Number: 1999.A.0087 | RG Number: RG-60.2100.052 | Film ID: 2051

Sessions 41 and 42. Two male translators sitting in a booth. Near the beginning of Dr. Heinrich Grüber's testimony, Assistant State Attorney Bar-Or asks if Grüber knows the accused, when he first saw him, and about the discussion he had with Eichmann in their first meeting, which concerned Jewish immigration. Grüber describes Eichmann as a block of ice or marble and says that he never received from him a favorable reply to his entreaties on behalf of the Jewish community (00:08:14). Grüber states that he had tried to find an explanation for Eichmann's virulent anti-Semitism.

Bar-Or questions Grüber about the treatment he received in Sachsenhausen but Grüber insists his experience was a "trifle compared to the sufferings of my Jewish friends." The next part of his testimony is missing; the footage resumes with the latter part of Grüber's statement that there were often no witnesses, no documents to tell of the worst experiences suffered in a place that was like Dante's inferno. He tells of his transfer to Dachau. A large part of Grüber's testimony is missing and it resumes with defense attorney Robert Servatius questioning Grüber about his negotiations with Eichmann. After another interruption in the footage, Servatius pressures Grüber to answer his questions concerning his meetings with Eichmann.

00:31:04 The early part of Session 42, where Grüber testifies about the difference between the reaction of ordinary people and scholars to the persecution of Jews. This duplicates footage found on Tape 2052 at 01:00:02.

Skips part of the proceedings and continues with testimony pertaining to Grüber's contact with higher Catholic clergymen in Germany, including Pope Pius XII. Skips only a few moments in the proceedings and continues with Grüber's testimony about the willingness/unwillingness of Switzerland to let Jews emigrate to the country.

Grüber's testimony ends. Judge Landau thanks Dr. Grüber and he exits the witness stand and is seated in the audience. A translation of Grüber's statements about his personal feelings, his testimony, and his hope for a relationship between Germany and Israel is read to the court

Charlotte Salzberger takes the witness stand and is sworn in. Mr. Bar-Or asks the witness about her arrival in Holland, how long she stayed there, and whether she and her family had to register as Jews. Salzberger shows the court her Jewish registration document and a picture of the star she had to wear. Salzberger testifies that in February-March 1945 she and her sister were released from Ravensbrück and taken by train to Theresienstadt, were they were held for four weeks, isolated from the rest of the camp's population (this part of her testimony is not on the tape). She and her sister were taken to the Dienststelle office in Theresienstadt where they were interviewed by SS men, including Eichmann. She states that she knew it was Eichmann because of the way he spoke, that he was notorious for using many Jewish expressions. Eichmann wanted to know how much Salzberger and her sister had found out about the extermination program while at Ravensbrück, since Ravensbrück had begun to receive large numbers of transports from Auschwitz and other camps in the second half of 1944. As she is talking Eichmann writes a note, which is delivered to Servatius. The witness says that Eichmann told her they would be allowed intoTheresienstadt but if they told anyone about their experiences in Rabensbrück they would "go through the chimney." She says that despite their promises not to tell of the extermination of the Jews they reported their experiences to the other inmates, who did not believe them. Bar-Or asks her whether she heard about the organization of a second transport to Switzerland in April 1945 organized by the SS (00:58:30). Salzberger states that the transport never left the ghetto because the Red Cross intervened and took over Theresienstadt from the SS. Throughout this segment there are various shots of Eichmann in the booth.

Film Title
Eichmann Trial
Event:  1961 May 16
Production:  1961 May 16
Jerusalem, Israel
Accessed at United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of The Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archives of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Record last modified: 2021-06-03 12:45:24
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