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Obergruppenfuehrer and General of the Police Dr. Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Chief of the Security Police and the SD (2770-PS).
In addition he held the Golden insignia of Honor and the Blutorden. He was a member of the Reichstag after the 9th election period 1938 (2892-PS).
Toward the end of the war, Kaltenbrunner's power increased greatly, especially after the attack on Hitler of 20 July 1944. He gained direct access to Hitler. He was very friendly with Fegelein and his wife, who was the sister of Eva Braun. So powerful had Kaltenbrunner become toward the end that even Himmler feared him. On 13 April 1945 the chief of the German foreign intelligence service, Schellenberg, asked Himmler to receive the representative of the Jewish World Congress, Mr. Storsch, from Stockholm, and Himmler said,
“But how am I going to do that in regard to Kaltenbrunner? I shall then be completely at his mercy!” (2990-PS).
B. DURING KALTENBRUNNER'S TERM IN OFFICE AS CHIEF OF THE SECURITY POLICE AND SD, NUMEROUS AND VAST CRIMES WERE COMMITTED BY THE SIPO AND SD IN THE COURSE OF OFFICIAL DUTIES.
As Chief of the Security Police after 30 January 1943, Kaltenbrunner was the head of the RSHA and the regional offices of the Gestapo, SD, and Kripo. Directly under Kaltenbrunner were the Chiefs of the main offices of the RSHA, including Amt III (the SD), Amt IV (the Gestapo), Amt V (the Kripo), and Amt VI (the SD in foreign intelligence) (L-219).
Kaltenbrunner had direct responsibility over the offices of the RSHA. All important matters had to be referred to him or had to be handled under general or special authority granted by him
to office chiefs.
“All decisions of principal character are signed by the Chief of the Security Police personally. An office chief has only the authority to sign “acting for and a chairman ‘by order of if the subjects treated in the respective decrees fit into the general laid-down principles according to the plan of distribution of authority. In case of doubt it was the duty to get the question cleared up by reporting it to the Chief of Security Police and SD.” (L-34) "To my knowledge no chief of office or any of the officials of the RSHA, authorized to sign, had the right to sign in any principal affairs of particular political significance without consent of the Chief of the Security Police—not even during
his temporary absence. From my own experience I can furthermore declare that the chief of Amt IV, Mueller, particularly was very hesitant in signing documents concerning questions of general nature and in some cases of greater importance, and that he put aside events of such nature in most cases for the return of the Chief of the Security Police,
whereby often much time was lost." (L-50). Schellenberg, the Chief of Amt VI of the RSHA, has stated:
“I know of no limitation placed on Kaltenbrunner's author-
on in the entire organization. (2939-PS) During Kaltenbrunner's term in office as Chief of the Security Police and SD, the following crimes were committed by the SIPO and SD pursuant to policy established by the RSHA or orders issued out of the RSHA for all of which he was responsible by virtue of his office.
(1) Mass murders of civilians of occupied countries by Einsatz Groups. A general discussion of this and the following twelve crimes of the Gestapo and SD appears in Section 6 of Chapter XV. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents: 3012-PS; 2752-PS; 2890-PS.
(2) Screening of prisoner of war camps and executing racial and political undesirables. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: 2622-PS.
(3) The taking of recaptured prisoners of war to concentration camps, where in some cases they were executed. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents: 1650-PS; L-158; 1514-PS.
(4) Establishing concentration camps and committing racial and political undesirables to concentration and annihilation camps for slave labor and mass murder. That this crime continued after January of 1943 is shown by the following documents: D-50; D-46; L-41; 701-PS.
(5) Deportation of citizens of occupied countries for forced labor and disciplining of forced labor. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents : 3012-PS; 1063-B-PS.
(6) The execution of captured commandos and paratroopers and protection of civilians who lynched Allied fliers. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents: 1276-PS; 532-PS; 526-PS; R-110; 745-PS.
(7) The taking of civilians of occupied countries to Germany for secret trial and punishment. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: 835-PS.
(8) Punishment of citizens of occupied territories under special criminal procedure and by summary methods. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: L-5.
(9) The execution and confinement of persons in concentration camps for crimes allegedly committed by their relatives. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: L-37.
(10) Seizure and spoliation of public and private property. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents : 2620-PS; L-18.
(11) Murder of prisoners in SIPO and SD prisons. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: L-53.
(12) Persecution of Jews. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following documents: L-18; 1061PS; 2375-PS; 2605-PS.
(13) Persecution of the churches. That this crime continued after January 1943 is shown by the following document: 1815– PS).
C. KALTENBRUNNER HAD DIRECT KNOWLEDGE OF AND RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE COMMISSION OF MANY SPECIFIC CRIMES.
(1) Kaltenbrunner was fully cognizant of conditions in concentration camps and of the fact that concentration camps were used for slave labor and mass murder. Mauthausen concentration camp was established in Austria while Kaltenbrunner was the Higher SS and Police Leader for Austria, and was frequently visited by Kaltenbrunner before he was appointed Chief of the Security Police and SD (L-51). On the occasion of one such visit
in 1942, Kaltenbrunner personally observed the gas chamber in operation (2753-PS). After he became Chief of the Security Police and SD, Kaltenbrunner visited Mauthausen concentration camp but with less frequency (L-51). On one occasion he made an inspection of the campgrounds with Himmler and had his photograph taken during the course of the inspection (2641-PS). After a visit to Mauthausen in 1944 Kaltenbrunner reported to his Amt Chiefs with pride that he had helped to build up Mauthausen when he was Higher SS and Police Leader in Austria and that the camp was engaged in valuable armament work (2990PS). Mauthausen concentration camp was classified by Heydrich in January 1941 in category III, a camp for the most heavily accused prisoners and for asocial prisoners who were considered incapable of being reformed (1063-A-PS).
There were frequent conferences between the RSHA and executives of the SS Wirtschaft and Verwaltungshauptamt who had charge of the internal administration of concentration camps. The affidavit of Rudolf Mildner states with respect to these conferences:
"SS Obergruppenfuehrer Dr. Kaltenbrunner attended personally conferences with SS Obergruppenfuehrer Pohl, Chief of the SS Wirtschaft and Verwaltungshauptamt and Chief of the concentration camps. Due to these conferences and through talks with the Chief of Office Gruppenfuehrer Mueller of Amt IV and Gruppenfuehrer Nebe of Amt V, the Chief of the Security Police and SD, SS Obergruppenfuehrer Dr. Kaltenbrunner, must have known the state of affairs in the concentration camps." (L-35)
(2) With full knowledge of conditions in and the purpose of concentration camps, Kaltenbrunner ordered or permitted to be ordered in his name the commitment of persons to concentration camps. All orders for protective custody other than shortterm confinements were issued in the name of Kaltenbrunner as Chief of the Security Police and SD and bore the facsimile stamp of his signature (2477-PS).
The commandant of Buchenwald concentration camp in his affidavit states:
“With the exception of the mass delivery of prisoners from the concentration camps of occupied territories, all prisoners were sent to the concentration camp Buchenwald on orders of the Reichssicherheitschauptamt, Berlin. These preventive arrest orders (red blanks) were in most cases signed with
the name Kaltenbrunner. The few other preventive arrest
orders were signed with 'Foerster.'” (L-38) On 7 July 1943 an order for protective custody was issued by the Gestapo (Amt IV C 2, RSHA) bearing the facsimile signature of Kaltenbrunner, to be sent in the form of a telegram to the Gestapo office in Koeslin in the case of a woman whose offense was stated to be failure to work, work sabotage, and asocial conduct. She was ordered to be confined in the concentration camp at Ravensbrueck (2745-PS).
On 19 January 1944 a warrant for protective custody was issued by the Gestapo (Amt IV C 2 of the RSHA) certified as signed by Kaltenbrunner, to a British subject, C. S. James, on the grounds that he had been proven guilty of activities to the detriment of the German Reich, and that there was reason to expect that he would, if released, commit acts prejudicial to the Reich (1574–PS).
Other instances of commitments to various concentration camps on orders, signed by Kaltenbrunner, are contained in the dossiers of 25 Luxembourgers committed to concentration camps by the Einsatzkommando of the Sipo and SD in Luxembourg during the year 1944. The concentration camps to which the persons were committed included Dachau, Natzweiler, Sachsenhausen, and Buchenwald. Among the grounds were: “strongly suspected of working to the detriment of the Reich;" "spiteful statements inimical to Germany as well as aspersions and threats against persons active in the National Socialist movement;" “strongly suspected of aiding desertion;" “as relative of a deserter expected to take advantage of every occasion to harm the German Reich." (L-215).
Further orders for commitments to concentration camps are contained in file of 42 telegrams, all issued by the RSHA, Amt IV A 6, Prague, to the Gestapo Office at Darmstadt, and all signed by Kaltenbrunner, during the period from 20 September 1944 to 2 February 1945. The concentration camps to which people were sent included Sachsenhausen, Ravensbrueck, Buchenwald, Dachau, Bergen-Belsen, Flossenburg, and Theresienstadt. Nationalities included Czech, German, French, Dutch, Italian, Corsican, Lithuanian, Greek, and Jew. Grounds included “refusal to work;" "religious propaganda;" "sex relations with PWs;" "communist statements;" "loafing on job;" "working against the Reich;" "spreading of rumors detrimental to morale;" "Aktion Gitter;" "breach of work contracts;" "statements