IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
JOSEPH PETROVSKY, ET AL.,
ON APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
AMICUS CURIAE BRIEF
Polish Historical Society
91 Strawberry Hill Ave., Suite 1038
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- On the basis of eyewitness testimony and survivors identification, OSI wrongfully prosecuted F. Walus and Dr. K. Hanff, now exonerated, members of the Polish-American community
- About 40 various plans of the Treblinka-II camp drawn for or by survivors present graphic and astonishing proof of unreliability of their memory
- Soviet-provided Demjanjuk's ID card was supposedly issued in mid-1942 by SS-Commissioner, O. Globocnik, who had been dismissed by H. Himmler from his post in March 1942, while J. Demjanjuk was still in the Red Army, p. 1
- Permissive use of judicial notice and eyewitness testimony in lieu of physical and/or documentary evidence were hallmarks of injustice of the past political and/or show trials
- Soviet-provided, extorted eyewitness testimonies for the 1945 Leningrad war crimes trial resulted in wrongful, public hanging of seven German officers for "murdering 10,000 Polish officers in the Katyn Forest."
- German ex-prisoner of Majdanek, P. Hoffmann, was misidentified as the chief of crematoria by Jewish co-prisoners, survivors of that camp, and was publicly hanged in 1945, in the aftermath of the first war crimes trial in Poland; two years later, the real perpetrator was found and hanged, p. 8
III. Captain Sauer, "Ivan", Jan Rogoza, "Ivan Brosh" and lately "Ivan the Terrible" were contemporaneously and thus inconsistently remembered by Jewish survivors as the chief perpetrator at the Treblinka-II camp, p. 12
IV. Did the alleged mass exterminations take place at Treblinka-II or at Treblinka-III, forty kilometers away ?, p. 17
V. What did survivors remember as the method of mass extermination at Treblinka-II: steam in gas chambers, Diesel exhaust in gas chambers, Zyklon-B in gas chambers, shooting with a rifle, shooting with a machine gun, electrocution or suffocation in a vacuum ?, p. 19
VI. Was the only mass grave found at the Treblinka-II camp large enough for burial of 900,000 victims who were allegedly killed at that camp ?, p. 24
VII. Can a Diesel engine be the murder weapon used in the alleged war crimes ?, p. 34
VIII. Is the ID card submitted by the KGB to identify John Demjanjuk genuine ?, p. 37
IX. Conclusion, p. 40
IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
JOSEPH PETROVSKY, ET AL.,
ON APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
As persons interested in history, the members of the Polish Historical Society have followed the case against John (Ivan) Demjanjuk for alleged murders in the camp of Treblinka II in Poland during the 1942-43 period of the Second World War. In our observations, we found numerous discrepancies both in the eyewitness testimony and in the documentary evidence, and as persons of conscience, we feel obliged to provide the Court with documentation which we feel may materially affect the outcome of the decision.
Previously, the Justice Department prosecuted a member of the
Polish-American community, Frank Walus, for alleged war crimes on the basis of eyewitness testimony and identification. The case of Frank Walus (the so-called "SS-Beast of Kielce" [a Ghetto in Poland]) is a potent example of the doubtful credibility of eyewitness testimony. Walus was prosecuted by the Justice Department in the Chicago District Court in a denaturalization proceeding for war crimes on the basis of identification by survivor testimony alone. Eleven eyewitnesses claimed that Frank Walus participated in war crimes including murder and beatings. There was no physical or documentary evidence presented to substantiate the claims; the court, however, accepted the eyewitness testimony, and Mr. Walus was convicted. Exhibit 1. His conviction was overturned on appeal when exonerating documents were provided which established that Mr. Walus was elsewhere during the war, and could not have committed the crimes alleged. Mr. Walus spent the entire war as a forced laborer on a farm in Germany. Exhibit 2. Without the exonerating documents, Mr. Walus would have been deported to stand trial on capital offenses because of eyewitness testimony given thirty years after the fact. Exhibit 3.
The spurious case against Mr. Walus is not unique. Alan Ryan, the head of the OSI, admitted that in the case of another Polish-American, Dr. Konstanty Hanff, the survivor testimony could not possibly be accurate since Dr. Hanff, like Mr. Walus, was nowhere near the scene of the crime as the eyewitnesses alleged. Exhibit 4. Given these precedents of these wronged members of our Polish-American community, the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) and
the Justice Department should have been more circumspect in regard to allegations of war crimes by eyewitness testimony in subsequent cases, particularly in the case of John Demjanjuk.
We would like to present to the Court a series of documents which will shed more than a shadow of a doubt about John Demjanjuk's guilt in this matter. The inconsistencies in the eyewitness accounts and in the documentary evidence provided by the KGB is so flagrant that it must be brought to the Court's attention. Some of the points which we wish to make have been previously raised by the prosecution or defense, but we have additional relevant documentation which we feel will help clarify those points. We would like to bring to the attention of the Court that this brief is not being prepared by attorneys, but by persons interested in historical truth, and we beg the Court's indulgence if we make any errors in format. Furthermore, we are presenting this brief as friends of the court, and not with the approval of either the petitioner or the respondents.
We have previously forwarded large amounts of material to OSI and to its consultants pointing out these discrepancies. We were surprised and disappointed to learn that our findings were not incorporated into the judicial proceedings, although we did obtain acknowledgements from Raul Hilberg, Senior Advisor for OSI, and Peter Black, OSI staff member, that our materials were received. Exhibit 5.
The following is a brief outline of the inconsistencies in the case against John Demjanjuk. The outline falls into two broad
categories, 1) Inconsistencies in eyewitness testimony; 2) inconsistencies in documentary evidence provided by the Soviet KGB.
1) Discrepancies in eyewitness testimony:
a) There is no consistency in numerous reports and various court determinations since the 1940's as to who the chief of the Treblinka camp guards actually was, whether the man was Captain Sauer, Jan Rogoza, Ivan, "Ivan the Terrible," Ivan Marchenko, or Nikolai Marchenko. Exhibit 6.
b) There is no consistency in the stories of where the annihilations took place whether in Treblinka II or forty kilometers (35 miles) away at Treblinka III. Exhibit 7.
c) There is no consistency in the authoritative sources of how mass killings were carried out: gassing with steam, gassing with diesel exhaust, gassing with Zyklon-B, shooting with a rifle, shooting with machine guns, suffocating in a vacuum, or electrocution have all at one time or another been alleged as the method of extermination. Exhibit 8.
d) There is no consistency about the extent of killing; estimates vary from the statement by a forensic examination commission conducted by a Polish Court as "large," to 350,000 by a German Court, to approximately 900,000 by the Jerusalem Court, to 3.5 million alleged by the Soviet government. Nor how and where the corpses of this supposed mass murder were disposed of; where they were buried; and where the bones and cremation ashes were dispersed. Exhibit 9.
e) There is no consistency in the eyewitness testimony that diesel exhaust was used as the murder weapon (Exhibit 10) with the technical evidence, provided by the Environmental Protection Agency and others, that diesel exhaust does not produce enough carbon monoxide or other poisonous gasses to kill a human being. Exhibit 11.
f) There is no consistency in the eyewitness testimony of how 50,000 people were supposedly killed in the "Lazaret" in the lower portion of the camp with the findings of a forensic excavation ordered by a Polish Court in 1945. Exhibit 11A.
g) Perhaps the most astonishing and graphic proof of inconsistency in survivor testimony is provided by a set of various plans of the Treblinka II camp, about 40 in number, drawn by, or under the direction of, survivors. After inspecting these drawings of the camp, it is apparent that none of the survivors agree as to the size, number, and location of the huge mass graves, and the location and number of the gas chamber buildings. Exhibit 12. There is no consistency even when the same person has drawn the plan at different times over the years. Exhibit 13. It is also apparent that on some of these drawings, the survivor's memory improves with age. Exhibit 14.
2) Discrepancies in the authenticity of Demjanjuk's ID card and three others like it from the Trawniki camp provided by the KGB:
a) Demjanjuk's ID card was supposedly issued in mid-1942 by SS-Reichsfuehrer Himmler's Commissioner, Odilo Globocnik. But SS-
Reichsfuehrer Himmler dismissed Commissioner Globocnik in March of 1942, while Demjanjuk was still in the Red Army.
b) Three of the ID cards from Trawniki issued in 1942 carry the stamp of the Waffen SS, but the Waffen SS did not take over Trawniki until 1943, a year after Demjanjuk supposedly departed from there.
c) On one of the other ID cards provided by the KGB, guard Juchnowoskij's [recte: Juchnowskij's] ID card, his picture is reversed (the buttons are on the left side of his military tunic, buttoning like a woman's blouse) while the numbers attached to the military tunic are not, proof that the picture was composed in a lab.
d) One ID bears the name of Corporal Teufel; Teufel had been promoted to sergeant three months previously.
e) The same ID bears the signature of Capt. Hoefle; Hoefle had by that time been promoted to Major.
f) The graphic elements of the official seals on the Trawniki ID cards are inaccurate:
i) In one example the right wingtip of the German eagle on the Trawniki card is grossly misaligned and points to the letter "i" in the word "Errichtung" on the rim of the seal, whereas in an authentic seal, the right wingtip points to the space between the words "die Errichtung";
ii) The SS symbol is printed in roman script; all SS documents and seals have runic thunderbolt symbols, one of the telltale markings that make it an official SS document or seal;
iii) On one ID card, the stamp of the "District of Lublin,
Trawniki Training Camp," is upside down on the card and almost illegible, hardly proper form for an official ID card of a guardsman of the SS.
g) The Prosecution did not provide the Defense with high resolution color photographs of the original ID card sufficient to conduct a meaningful forensic and historical examination of the KGB-provided card. Exhibit 15. The Defense was given only poor, out-of-focus, black and white photographs of portions of the ID card, and from 1977-87 were given five different versions of the card. Exhibit 16. High resolution color photographs were not provided until Mr. Demjanjuk had already been extradited to Israel, so a historical examination of the ID card wasn't possible until the Court in Jerusalem made them available.
h) Other discrepancies in the ID cards have been noted and can be found in Exhibit 17.
We would like to offer the Court the opportunity to consider the data which seems to have been overlooked by the OSI, and we hope that this data will help the Court to arrive at a fuller understanding of the truth in the matter of Mr. John Demjanjuk. Much of this evidence has been available to OSI for quite some time (since the mid-1980's), and some of it is even U.S. Government property, such as military intelligence aerial photos and records of U.S. war crimes trials; certainly nothing that is unavailable to any competent researcher. We feel that due to the unreliability of the eyewitness testimony and the documentary evidence provided by the KGB, the OSI should not have continued with its prosecution of
John Demjanjuk. Furthermore, in the light of such evidence made public in Patrick Buchanan's national newspaper column (Exhibit 18) in 1990 which also had been made available to OSI, the OSI should have informed the court of further evidence which might exonerate the defendant.
After lengthy denaturalization proceedings, John Demjanjuk was extradited to Israel to face charges that he violated the Nazi and Nazi Collaborators (Punishment) Law, 5710-1950, for his alleged activities as a guard at the Treblinka II camp. Specifically he was charged with "the crimes of murder and malicious wounding; [and] inflicting grievous bodily harm." The alleged method of murder was to asphyxiate the victims with the exhaust from a Diesel engine, and then these victims were buried on the site of the camp. It was determined by the Jerusalem Court that up to 900,000 people were murdered in this fashion at the Treblinka II camp, and that John Demjanjuk took part in many or most of these deaths. Exhibit 19.
Mr. Demjanjuk was identified, over thirty years after the alleged events had taken place, by eyewitnesses from the State of Israel as "Ivan the Terrible," the Treblinka II camp guard who participated in these alleged mass murders. Furthermore, the KGB of the Soviet Union provided an identity card to OSI which alleges that Mr. Demjanjuk was a guard at "Sobibor" which incongruously was used to corroborate the eyewitness testimony that he was at Treblinka II.
In previous war crimes trials, the rules of evidence have been suspended (International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg 1946 Exhibit 20), blatantly forged documents have been admitted as evidence (International Military Tribunal et al.; submitted mostly by the Soviet prosecutors, e.g. the Katyn Forest Massacre documents, et al. Exhibit 21), and false eyewitness testimonies have been used to secure convictions on capital offenses. Exhibit 22. The war crimes trial of John Demjanjuk in Israel was a highly publicized affair in which emotional testimony (the trial was even held in a theater) was used to impress upon the public lessons of a political nature. Based on inadequate expert testimony (provided by Dr. Y. Arad and others), the Jerusalem court accepted that approximately 900,000 people were killed at the Treblinka II camp, and that it was just a matter of proving that Demjanjuk was the guilty party without any further proofs of murder, such as weapon, location of mass graves, motive, etc. Exhibit 22A.
We would like to point out that a number of convictions for war crimes have been exonerated in the light of subsequent evidence, either because the original trial suppressed evidence or put undue weigh[t] upon Holocaust survivor testimony. At a trial in Lublin in 1945, 16 Holocaust survivors identified a certain German, Paul Hoffmann, as the sadistic chief of the crematoria at Majdanek. After a highly publicized trial he was convicted. Notwithstanding his protests of innocence, he was publicly hung before 20,000 onlookers. Exhibit 23. Several months after his execution, archival documents established that he had been a German prisoner of the
Nazis, and not the chief of the crematoria. The actual chief Erich Muhsfeldt, was tried and executed in 1947. Exhibit 24. Also in 1945, seven German officers were convicted on eyewitness testimony extorted by the NKVD (Soviet Secret Police) and forged documentary evidence, and executed for the war crime of having been responsible for the murder of 10,000 Polish officers at Katyn. Exhibit 25. In 1990, the Soviet government acknowledged that it was their own secret police who killed the Polish officers. Exhibit 26.
We agree with Patrick Buchanan, that due to the highly emotional content of the trial, the prosecution of John Demjanjuk has taken on some of the hue of the ancient witch trials. Exhibit 27. In witch trials, courts took scientific notice of the then prevalent belief of the existence of Satan. Consequently, testimony of eyewitnesses who stated that women flew through the air on brooms, had intercourse with the devil, etc., things that were physically impossible, were accepted as credible, while extorted confessions secured convictions. Exhibit 28. A modern counterpart was manifested in the mid-1930's at the Soviet show trials where courts took judicial notice of Party subversion and counterrevolution. Men at these Soviet show trials were accused of, and confessed to, highly implausible allegations. Exhibit 29. It might be recalled that most of the Nazi personnel of the Treblinka II denied in West German Courts that it was an annihilation camp. Exhibit 30. Those who did claim so, e.g. Otto Horn, received immunity or received reduced sentences, e.g. F. Suchomel (Exhibit 31), and therefore their testimony must be considered suspect. We
have found numerous discrepancies in what previous trials have alleged happened at Treblinka (notably the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg), and what the present Israeli eyewitnesses allege which we feel shed more than a shadow of a doubt on the guilt of John Demjanjuk.
Testimony that is offered by eyewitnesses more than thirty years after the fact can be misleading, especially in cases having to do with the "Holocaust." There have been more than 1,600 medical papers written on "The Psychological and Medical Effects of the Concentration Camps on Holocaust Survivors." Exhibit 32. This "Holocaust Survivor Syndrome" involves "Judaic group fantasies of martyrdom and heroics," and was described decades ago by Jewish psychologists. Exhibit 33. Reportedly, half of 20,000 survivor testimonies in the Yad Vashem memorial in Jerusalem are considered "unreliable," and are not to be used in trials. Exhibit 34. Also, according to many Israeli and American scholars e.g. S. Krakowski, R. Hilberg and J. Ginsberg, Holocaust survivors' eyewitness testimony is frequently inexact. Exhibit 35. Even OSI's former director Alan Ryan agrees with the unreliability of eyewitness testimony, and the above mentioned cases of Polish-Americans, Frank Walus and Konstanty Hanff are prime examples. Exhibit 36.
These cases of fraudulent testimony and forged documentation are not singular in war crimes trials, and with the aforementioned false convictions as precedent, we would like to point out to the Court that the eyewitness testimony and the documentary evidence in the Demjanjuk case should be reappraised, especially in the light
of the following evidence.
Various survivors since World War II have described the head of the Ukrainian Guards at the Treblinka II camp as Captain Sauer (Exhibit 37), Jan Rogozha (Exhibit 38), Ivan (Exhibit 39), or "Ivan the Terrible" (Exhibit 40), Ivan Marchenko, or Nikolai Marchenko (Exhibit 41). The name "Ivan the Terrible" was first mentioned in 1944. Exhibit 42. The second, and the last, written entry that we can find using this unforgettable sobriquet is in 1945. Exhibit 43. The name "Ivan the Terrible" then completely disappears from the Holocaust literature until 1976 (Exhibit 44) when Gustaw Boraks in Israel identified a picture of John Demjanjuk stating, "This is the likeness of Ivan Grozny (Grozny is the Polish word for "terrible")." Another Treblinka survivor, Jacob Szmulowicz (in 1978) also claimed to remember the name "Ivan the Terrible," while Elijahu Rosenberg (in 1979) identified him as "Ivan the Terrible" in the highly suggestive (Exhibit 45) photo layout of the Israeli police. All three eyewitnesses are members of the Circle of Former Treblinka Inmates. None of the three survivors had previously testified to knowing the name "Ivan the Terrible," and did not do so until the latter part of the 1970's. In all of the post-war NKVD-interrogation records about Treblinka II concerning its Ukrainian guards, there is only one fleetingly [sic] mention of "Ivan the
Terrible." Exhibit 46.
Several inmates who were at the Treblinka II camp for an extended period (10-12 months) did not recall the name "Ivan the Terrible," and it is significant that they spent extended periods of time at the camp without hearing the name of the supposedly most feared guard and greatest mass-murderer of mankind while they were there. One would think they could easily recall it. Charles Unger was there for ten months and the name, "Ivan the Terrible" only "rang a bell." Exhibit 47. William Schneiderman spent 15 months in the camp and did not remember an "Ivan Grozny" or "Ivan the Terrible." Exhibit 48. If one is in a prison where a guard is likely to take your life, as is alleged by some of the eyewitnesses, it seems very likely you would remember his name, especially when his name is as colorful as "Ivan the Terrible." It is as unforgettable a name as "Jack the Ripper." (See Prosecution's First Brief for Respondents pp. 37-39 for survivors who failed to identify Demjanjuk.) Therefore all of the post-1976 references to "Ivan the Terrible" historically appear as copycat mentions or have been prompted in the witnesses' memory.
After the liberation of the Treblinka II Camp in early August of 1944, investigations of the camp were conducted immediately, first in mid-August 1944 by a Soviet-Jewish commission attached to the 65th Red Army, (Exhibit 49) and then by a Polish-Jewish commission ordered and supervised by the District Court at Siedlce in the fall of 1945. Exhibit 50. Over three dozen testimonies taken under oath from Jewish ex-prisoners of the Treblinka II Camp were
compiled in 1944 and 1945 by these commissions. Exhibit 51. They indicate that all the ex-prisoners of Treblinka II with the exception of Hennoch Brenner and Abraham Kohn did not recall the existence of an "Ivan the Terrible" at their camp when first asked individually to list perpetrators of crimes in 1944 and 1945, and then as a group during the meeting of about a dozen Treblinka II survivors later in 1945. During this group meeting, which was ordered by Judge Z. Lukaszkiewicz of the District Court in Siedlce, the Examining Magistrate, and took place on November 5, 1945 at 31 Zeromskiego Street in Lodz, Poland, the attending Treblinka II ex-prisoners were told to list all possible Treblinka II perpetrators of crimes for the Nuremberg courts. Exhibit 52. However, instead of recalling "Ivan the Terrible" (or Ivan Demjanjuk, or Ivan Marchenko), they only remembered as the commander of the Ukrainian Guards a man named Jan Rogoza, a Polish name which sounds similar in Slavic languages to "Ivan Grozny," that is "Ivan the Terrible" (Jan=Ivan Rogoza=Rogzny=Grozny). Exhibit 53. Consequently, the Polish magistrate determined that Jan Rogozha was the head of the Ukrainian guards of Treblinka, and not "Ivan the Terrible," John Demjanjuk, or Ivan Marchenko. Exhibit 54.
Several investigations were launched into the allegations of mass extermination in the Treblinka II camp. The first report was issued by the Underground government of the Warsaw ghetto, dated November 15, 1942, and clandestinely transmitted to the Allies in London in early December of 1942. Exhibit 55. This report stated that the main perpetrator of mass annihilations at Treblinka II was
named Captain Sauer, a finding which was later also accepted by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg.
The next report, issued in 1944, was a booklet published by the Polish-Jewish Underground called A Year in Treblinka. This booklet alleges that two Ukrainians, Ivan and Nikolai, were the operators of gas chambers using diesel exhaust as the poisoning agent. Exhibit 56. The book was supposedly authored by a Treblinka II survivor, an untutored carpenter by the name of Yankiel Wiernik, but was actually ghostwritten by a Polish theater director. Exhibit 57. This booklet was submitted in evidence by reference, in lieu of testimony, to the Polish District Court at Siedlce, but was disregarded by the court in its final verdict. After its investigation was completed, the Polish court drew up a list of Ukrainian perpetrators of war crimes for the International Military Tribunal in which the names of Ivan and Nikolai are omitted.
The name of "Ivan the Terrible" was first recorded by Soviet investigators who interviewed Abraham Kohn on August 17, 1944 at the inquest of the Extraordinary State Commission for the Investigation of German Atrocities. Exhibit 58. His testimony reads, "Ivan the Terrible stood in front of .... " This quote which briefly mentions the infamous sobriquet loses much of its judicial weight when 14 months later survivor Kohn failed to mention it in another interrogation. Exhibit 59. One would think that someone as notorious as "Ivan the Terrible" would figure largely in both interrogations, when, in fact, there was only a single fleeting mention in two separate individual inquiries.
The second mention of the name "Ivan the Terrible" took place on October 9, 1945 by Treblinka survivor Hennoch Brenner before the Polish magistrate at Siedlce. Exhibit 60. He said, "A Ukrainian called Ivan the Terrible was known from an especial cruelty when people were being chased into the chambers. Ivan was setting a dog on his victims. In my presence he cut off the breast of a woman with his knife." However, when questioned 14 months earlier, Brenner had failed to mention any "Ivan the Terrible." Exhibit 61. Like Kohn, Brenner's recollection was unreliable. The Polish magistrate at Siedlce disregarded Kohn and Brenner's testimony, and there was no "Ivan the Terrible" on his list of war criminals given to the International Military Tribunal.
In addition to the individual interrogations, the court held a group inquiry of survivors from Treblinka II on November 5, 1945 in Lodz to determine the names of perpetrators of war crimes at that camp. Exhibit 62. This group inquiry does not corroborate the sobriquet "Ivan the Terrible" mentioned by Kohn and Brenner, and brings to mind the question: If Ivan was so terrible, how come no one out of the whole group of survivors mentioned him at the inquest? The Polish magistrate at Siedlce finally determined for the International Military Tribunal that the name of the main perpetrator of war crimes at Treblinka II was Jan Rogoza.
There were three Treblinka war crimes trials held in Germany in 1951, 1965, and 1970, (Exhibit 63) where the name of Ivan was mentioned, but the sobriquet "the Terrible" was not used in any of these three trials. In 1954, four Ukrainian guards were tried for
war crimes committed at Treblinka II. Exhibit 64. Ivan was fleetingly mentioned as the chief of the Ukrainian guards and of the gas chamber operation. Ivan Marchenko was described as a notorious camp playboy, but the name, "Ivan the Terrible," was not mentioned. It is significant to note that in a letter to the Polish Supreme Court in 1956, when the political climate in Poland had eased somewhat, the four guards retracted their interrogation testimony because it had been given under duress. Exhibit 64A.
In two commissions of inquiry and five trials about Treblinka II prior to the Jerusalem trial of John Demjanjuk there have been several different men identified as the chief of the Ukrainian guards or as the perpetrator of mass annihilations, Captain Sauer, Jan Ragoza [recte: Rogoza], and "Ivan the Terrible," all have been alleged to be this man. John Demjanjuk and Ivan Marchenko are now the latest victims in a string of men accused and prosecuted for the same crime.
Upon the insistence of various Jewish organizations and the Polish Government-in-Exile in London, a meeting of representatives of major Allied governments took place in Bermuda in April, 1943. The purpose of this Bermuda Conference was to stop further extermination and to rescue the remainder of the European Jews. For this conference, the Polish Government-in-Exile prepared a
comprehensive, but "by no means complete," list of over 60 German concentration camps in Poland. The list was composed after verification of previously received data about these camps, which was ordered by the Polish Government. The investigation was conducted by the Polish underground intelligence, famous for its exploits during World War II, e.g. transferring parts of the German V-2 rocket to London. Its attention was especially directed at the Treblinka and Majdanek Camps.
Aside from the verification of the intelligence received regarding these camps, a feasibility study of an attack on Treblinka and Majdanek was ordered by the Commander-in-Chief of the Home Army, General "Grot" Rowecki on January 27, 1943, who demanded that the report be returned by February 17, 1943. Exhibit 65. Based on this in-depth investigation, the Polish Ministry of the Interior in London issued its official comprehensive report about the Nazi concentration camps on March 1, 1943. Exhibit 66. Written in halting English, this report was cumbersomely entitled "List of Different Types of Concentration Camps for Poles" ("Poles" means all citizens of Poland, minorities included). However, this "List" clearly stated that the Treblinka II Camp where John Demjanjuk was alleged to have been was not an annihilation camp.
The annihilation camp "Treblinka III", according to this official governmental document, was located in an area of the large Czerwony Bor Forest, within a remote and secret old military base also named Czerwony Bor. The Treblinka III death camp for the Jews was therefore located about 40 kilometers north of the Treblinka II
The Treblinka II Camp, considered during the Jerusalem trial as the annihilation camp, was described in this official, multi-paged governmental document as just an ordinary concentration camp.
While the location of the Treblinka III camp was remote and secretive, the Treblinka II was located 240 meters from an important railway and 270 meters from a concrete-paved roadway, then considered in rural Poland to be the equivalent of a busy superhighway. The nearby Wolka Okraglik village dwellings were located 800 (eight hundred) meters away from the Treblinka II Camp, and during this camp's existence, local peasants cultivated their fields up to the camp's barbed wire fences. Exhibit 67. If there were an annihilation program going on at Treblinka II it would have been visible to everyone in the surrounding area.
The Polish report mentioned above is available from the Hoover Archive at Stanford University. This is information available to anyone who takes the time to look it up; apparently, the historians at OSI didn't bother to look.
During the Second World War, there were several clandestine reports made about the Treblinka II camp. Sometime in April, 1942,
an underground report was received at the Ministry of the Interior of the Polish Government-in-Exile in London which indicated that the Nazis had gassed about 26,000 deported Jews at the Treblinka and Trawniki Camps. This information was released in person by the Polish Vice-Premier, S. Mikolajczyk, at a press conference organized at the British Ministry of Information in London on July 9, 1942. Exhibit 68. It should be noted that when the press conference took place, it was about two weeks before the Treblinka II Camp was established (which happened on July 23, 1942), and the first transport of deportees from the Warsaw Ghetto didn't departed [sic] from the Umschlagplatz to this camp until the late afternoon of July 22, 1942. Exhibit 69. The three-kilometers-distant Treblinka I labor camp operated from 1941 until July 1944 as a penal labor camp, mostly for Poles. The Treblinka I camp was never considered as a death camp by anyone. Exhibit 70.
The next report was made in September of 1942 by the Bund. The Bund was the largest Jewish political party in Poland before and during the war. Its underground newspaper On Guard (Ojf der Wache), published in the Warsaw Ghetto, provided in the September 20, 1942 issue, an in-depth report about the Treblinka II camp. Exhibit 71. It was compiled by an officer of the pre-war Polish Army, Zelman Frydrych, a military investigator and later a hero who fell in the Ghetto Uprising. The Aryan-looking Frydrych was sent by the Bund to Treblinka to investigate the ghastly "rumors" about this camp circulated by its escapees among the population of the ghetto. Recently uncovered wartime aerial photographs of the Treblinka area
show that the camp could be easily observed from the nearby trees. Also, peasants were plowing their fields next to the barbed wire of the 12 hectare camp, so that it was not difficult to see what was going on in the camp.
Frydrych's contemporary intelligence report provides a substantially different picture of the Treblinka II camp than that presented 44 years later by the former Jewish prisoners who have been prosecution witnesses at the Demjanjuk trials in the U.S. and Israel. The Frydrych report indicates that mass executions at Treblinka II were conducted by the use of machine gun fire. The place of execution in Frydrych's September 1942 report was described as the "Bath," which purportedly contained an elaborate mechanical system for grinding and disposal of cadavers. Exhibit 72.
Soon after the first great deportation of Jews from Warsaw, the Jewish Coordinating Commission, virtually the underground government of the Warsaw Ghetto, prepared a multi-page report on Treblinka II (then called Treblinka B), which was accompanied by a plan of the camp. The report and the plan were dated November 15, 1942. A copy, buried within the Ringelblum Archive, survived the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto, while the original is available from the archives of the Government Records Office in London. Exhibit 73. Its verbatim translation was printed in a book co-sponsored by Eleanor Roosevelt and Albert Einstein entitled The Black Book of Polish Jewry published in New York in late 1943.
The November 15, 1942 report describes in detail the man in
command of the Treblinka II camp and gas chambers. According to this Report, this sadistic monster, who "one day in seven and a half hours was capable of shooting with a rifle, one by one, 500 young Jewish prisoners," was named Captain Sauer (not Demjanjuk or "Ivan the Terrible"). Sauer's name appears again on the most wanted list of the perpetrators provided for the Nuremberg Trials. The November 15, 1942 Report of the Jewish Coordinating Commission also stated that Treblinka II was staffed with "altogether 10 Germans and 30 Ukrainians" who within six weeks between July 23 and early September 1942, liquidated, using steam piped to the gas chambers from "a large vat which produces the steam ... 2,000,000 Jews, or the greater part of Polish Jewry, already buried in the area of Treblinka." Exhibit 74. However, nowhere in this official, November 15, 1942 report, of fresh-in-the-mind contemporary testimonies of various escapees from that camp and incorporating data from Frydrych's September Report, is there any mention of a huge Diesel engine (Exhibit 75), "Ivan the Terrible," Ivan Demjanjuk, or even of any Ivan at Treblinka at all.
At the International Military Tribunal Nuremberg Trials, the name of Captain Sauer as the head of operations at the gas chamber and the claims of steaming to death were accepted as evidence (Exhibit 76) and figured heavily in the conviction of Dr. Hans Frank. At Nuremberg, in addition to steaming, charges of mass killing by electrocution and gassing were also leveled, however, the charges only allege "several hundred thousands of Jews" were exterminated (Exhibit 77), rather than the two million alleged in
the Jewish Underground report. These charges remain unrefuted to this day.
During the Second World War, Polish military intelligence, whose information was highly prized as reliable by the Allies, monitored the Treblinka II camp in great detail. Their reports do not contain any mention of an extermination program by shooting, gassing, or any other means. Exhibit 78.
The method of execution at the Treblinka Camp differs widely from report to report, and trial to trial. Shooting with a rifle, machine gunning, steaming, suffocation in a vacuum, electrocuting, and gassing with Diesel exhaust are all said at one time or another to have been the preferred method of mass execution. The Diesel exhaust story which was favored by the survivors testifying against Demjanjuk appears to be taken wholesale from Yankiel Wiernik's booklet One Year in Treblinka. Exhibit 79. This propaganda pamphlet was ghostwritten in late 1943 for the semi-literate Yankiel Wiernik, by a Polish theater director who switched the method of mass murder at Treblinka II from steam to the Diesel exhaust. Wiernik, who was a long term inmate at Treblinka and worked as a carpenter, claimed (or his ghostwriter did) to have built and designed an additional new building containing ten Diesel-charged gas chambers. (This switch seems to have been prompted by Dr. Dodd, the head of the Royal College of Physicians in England, in a letter to the editor of the Twentieth Century Magazine debunking the steam allegation. Exhibit 80.) His testimony and that of the Israeli witnesses who testified against Demjanjuk cannot be reconciled
either with Frydrych's Report, the November 15, 1942 report of the Jewish Coordinating Commission, or the findings of the Nuremberg tribunal. It might be added that in the November 15, 1942 report, the "Bath" was re-described by the eyewitnesses as the steam chambers, while in late fall of 1943 this was again re-named the Diesel gas chambers by Wiernik.
Furthermore, in 1945, the Central Jewish Historical Commission in Poland (and others) determined that Zyklon-B was also used for mass gassings at the Treblinka II camp; a method recently acknowledged by Alan Dershowitz in 1990. Exhibit 80A. None of the various alleged methods of extermination are consistent within the past official reports, eyewitness testimony, and findings of judicial proceedings.
Eyewitnesses have testified that the Germans buried their victims of mass gassings at Treblinka, and that when the mass graves of Polish officers at Katyn were discovered, the Germans then disinterred the bodies of the Treblinka victims, and over a period of two months, cremated them to hide the evidence. The Nazis then destroyed the camp to obliterate all traces of their crimes. It has been determined that up to 900,000 people were killed at the camp. Exhibit 81.
Since there is little documentary evidence still extant about
the Treblinka II camp, we consulted wartime aerial reconnaissance photographs to discover more about it. These photos had been classified "secret" by the CIA until recently when they were placed into the National Archives. These photos are readily available to researchers, but appear to have been overlooked by the OSI. Exhibit 81A.
Aerial photography has been used in archeological site locations for a number of years now. Formations covered by soil over the years are not readily visible to a ground based observer, however, these same formations are highly evident when viewed from above. Foundations of long-forgotten fortifications, and in one case even a whole lost city, have been located by aerial surveying. Exhibit 82. In particular, cemeteries that have been plowed over for a millennium have been discovered in Europe using this technique. Through a combination of aerial photography and photographs of previous on-site digging, we were able to locate the site of a mass grave at Treblinka II and determine its dimensions. The foundations of large (30 x 15 meters) buildings which were said to have been the gas chambers were, however, not visible.
The aerial photos show that the surface of the only mass grave at Treblinka II is approximately 10% smaller than one of the Katyn Forest mass graves which contained 4,500 bodies. The same aerial photos also show 41 small mass graves approximately three kilometers distant at the Treblinka I camp site. The victims of the Treblinka I camp were never exhumed and cremated by the Nazis (Exhibit 83), and it is significant to note that the ground there
is higher and further from the floodplain of the river Bug which supplied the drinking water for the area including the cities of Bromberg, Torau and Danzig. Exhibit 84. The size of the small mass graves at Treblinka I is identical with the Polish magistrate's 1945 determination through exhumation that they contained approximately 10,000 bodies. Exhibit 85. Since John Demjanjuk, is alleged to have worked at the Treblinka II camp, the mass graves at Treblinka I are of secondary importance, except for the fact that the cadavers were not exhumed and cremated.
We were also able to locate ground-level photographs taken sometime in August of 1944 of the only mass grave at the Treblinka II site which provides us with its exact width. Exhibit 86. In 1945 the District Court of Siedlce ordered a forensic excavation of the Treblinka II site and determined the depth of this single mass grave. Exhibit 87. This information, combined with the length provided by the aerial photos completes the three dimensions of the grave, and gives a fairly accurate idea of how many cadavers the grave could hold which is in the neighborhood of 2,000-4,000 dead. That figure is considerably less than the 900,000 alleged. Since there were nearly a million people processed through the Treblinka II camp in a year (Exhibit 88), and it took on average 3 days of grueling rail travel to get there, 2,000-4,000 deaths is consistent with the very high death rate of the inhabitants of the Warsaw ghetto.
From information we have gathered, the corpses at Treblinka II were not exhumed and cremated to hide evidence, but rather, to
prevent epidemics when the river Bug rose. The approximately 10,000 corpses in the mass graves at Treblinka I were not exhumed and cremated because they were located above the rising water level.
There were two post-liberation commissions of inquiry into the Treblinka camps, one in 1944 conducted by the Soviet-Jewish commission attached to the 65th Red Army, and one in 1945 conducted by the Polish magistrate of the district court in Siedlce. The 1944 Soviet-Jewish commission had ground-level photos taken, and ascribed to the Treblinka II camp a victim count of 3,500,000 which was instantly used for Soviet propaganda purposes. Exhibit 88A. Either this commission was not interested in examining any physical facts associated with the alleged crime or no such reports are extant. The eye-level photographs of a relatively small [66 x 5 x 3 meters] mass grave of the Treblinka II Camp were initially taken for this Soviet commission, but these were first suppressed and only later published. Exhibit 89. On the other hand, this Soviet-Jewish commission performed a rather good examination of the mass graves at the Treblinka I Camp, and prepared a thorough report. Exhibit 89A. The Treblinka I graves contained about 10,000 bodies, and their combined contents were at least three times larger than that of the Treblinka II mass grave. Exhibit 90.
During November of 1945, in preparation for the Nuremberg (International Military Tribunal) trial, the Polish magistrate of the district court in Siedlce ordered an exploration of the former Treblinka II camp based on eyewitness testimony of the atrocities allegedly committed there. The Polish commission disbelieved the
survivors' tales and the enormous 3,500,000 victim count invented by its Soviet predecessor. Exhibit 91. Consequently, it attempted in earnest to unearth physical proofs of the Nazi crimes. The forensic exploration and excavation were started in November of 1945 with help of over 30 laborers under the personal supervision of the Jewish Chairman of the Siedlce District Council, J. Szlebzak. Four ex-prisoners representing the "Circle of Former Treblinka Inmates" were at hand: Messrs. S. Rajzman, T. Grinberg, S. Friedman and M. Mittelberg. Their sole purpose was to point to the locations of the unforgettable installations which allegedly they had had a chance to observe daily for about a year, and which had been dismantled only about 24 months prior: the Lazaret where about 50,000 sick, elderly, and children were purportedly shot; the gigantic mass graves; and the two masonry buildings housing the thirteen (10 + 3) gas chambers which were said to be lined with red terra cotta tile. Exhibit 92.
The location of the Lazaret pit was quickly found. Survivors alleged that 50,000 people were executed by shooting in this pit. However, while the thorough forensic exploration revealed a number of small personal articles belonging to the deported Jews and semi-burned camp refuse admixed with a few dozen small foreign coins, it failed to discover any residue of human bones, any of the 50,000 (at least) reputed execution bullets, or any of the 50,000 spent cartridges. Exhibit 92A.
The location of the Treblinka II gas chambers, the two largest masonry buildings in the district (one purportedly measuring about
30 x 15 meters), could not be recalled and agreed upon by the survivors. Since these buildings had to be located in the two-hectare-small "Upper Camp," the commission cut a number of long and deep exploratory trenches running in a north-south direction. Not a single shard of red, nor any other color, terra cotta tile, was found during the thorough excavations. Exhibit 93. Neither was there a trace of a thick concrete slab which had to serve as a base for the ceramic tiled walls and floor of the gas chambers, nor any trace of concrete or masonry foundations capable of supporting such heavy structures in Treblinka's sandy soil (which was subject to deep frosts) was discovered. Exhibit 94.
Perhaps the most astonishing and graphic proof of inconsistency in survivor testimony is provided by a set of various plans of the Treblinka II camp, about 40 in number, drawn by, or under the direction of, survivors. It is amazing that in the first seven plans that the escapees from the camp in the summer and fall of 1942 drew, they dutifully recorded where the shoes, perfumes, jewelry, and gold were stored, but failed to indicate the existence of mass graves. By then, allegedly, there were 300,000 Warsovian Jews murdered at Treblinka II. Even respected Ghetto fighter, Jakub Krzepicki failed to denote any graves on his plan, which survived its author hidden within the Ringelblum Archive. Exhibit 95. In the additional 34 plans drawn between November 15, 1942 and 1988, the survivors are hopelessly inconsistent in remembering the number of mass graves (anywhere from 3 - 12), or their size and location. (Exhibit 96; for easy viewing, graves on the plans are highlighted
with colors.) After inspecting these drawings of the camp, it is apparent that none of the survivors agree as to the size, number, and location of the huge mass graves and the gas chamber building. Exhibit 96A.
Some of these plans were drawn by escapees and underground Warsaw Ghetto investigators already in 1942. Buried within the Ringelblum Archive, they survived the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto. Others were drawn for and/or by the Jewish Coordinating Commission (an underground "parliament" of the Warsaw Ghetto), and were delivered by Polish Underground couriers to London. The majority were drawn after 1944 for the Central Jewish Historical Commission and later for the Jewish Historical Institute in Poland. Some were drawn by the accused Nazis in [the] West Germany while they [were] awaiting in jails their trials.
Some of the plans were drawn sequentially over the decades, without possibility to refer to previous drawings. Those, authored by Y. Wiernik and S. Willenberg, serve as a good example and illustrate irrefutably how the alleged accuracy of the memory of survivors "improved" with passage of decades. Exhibit 96B. Consequently, they were able to draw their plans with more and more detail, in reality adding more invented or imaginary details which can not be reconciled with wartime photographic evidence.
OSI was made aware of the discrepancies in these survivor-drawn plans, but ignored the data. Also, the report of the Polish magistrate was transmitted to OSI by the Polish authorities several years ago, but OSI, somehow, failed to grasp the significance of
the fact that there were no traces of large mass graves and absolutely no trace of the declared two buildings housing the alleged murder weapon. Exhibit 96C.
In the trial in Jerusalem it was alleged that the Nazis obliterated all traces of the camp to hide their crimes. Exhibit 97. This allegation, however, is not consistent with the report of the Central Jewish Historical Commission in Poland, compiled in late 1945, [which] stated that the terrain of the Treblinka II camp had been pulverized with aerial bombs and unexploded artillery duds a few months after its liberation by an engineers unit of the 65th Red Army. Exhibit 98. This obliteration of traces of the Treblinka II camp by the Soviets took place because the Soviet propaganda machine tried to attach a 3,500,000 victim-count to this small, 12-hectare transit camp. Apparently, the Soviets were afraid that the Allies might request an international commission of investigation of the camp, as demanded by the November 15th, 1942 report of the underground government of the Warsaw ghetto. The report of the Central Jewish Historical Commission in Poland was explicit in putting the blame for this obliteration of the camp where it belonged, on the Red Army, for the: "premeditated destruction of evidence of German crimes and atrocities as well as profanation of partially cremated human remains and ashes." Exhibit 99.
The general location of the relatively small Treblinka II mass grave was not difficult to find, inasmuch as human skulls and large bones were sticking out from the sand, having been strewn about by
treasure seekers and as a result of post-liberation Soviet explosions designed to obliterate the outlines of the small mass grave. Although its exact depth could not be determined due to the explosions, it could not have been deeper than seven meters because at this level intact layers of post-glacial sand were found. While recording the above findings (or telltale lack of them) the Polish-Jewish commission stopped short of drawing any conclusion from them with the most obvious being that:
- no executions with firearms were conducted at the Lazaret.
- no large masonry buildings existed at the Treblinka's II "Upper Camp" expressively called in the Jerusalem verdict "The Valley of Slaughter". Exhibit 100.
- the story of the many Jewish ex-prisoners of the camp (four of them being present at the excavations) was not credible because they could not agree about the location of the mass graves and the gas chambers.
It is strange that only two years after the supposed events of the alleged extermination, the four survivors, were unable to recall the location of "these gigantic [burial] pits" mentioned in the Jerusalem verdict. Exhibit 101. Nevertheless, these gigantic mass graves were unmistakenly marked on the large plan of the Treblinka II camp displayed behind the Jerusalem Court's dais. Exhibit 102. This plan was composed over period of time from the input of many survivors, one of them Mr. S. Rajzman who testified for C. Simonov, the Soviet prosecutor during the Nuremberg trials, General C. Simonov was famous for his attempts to introduce as
"genuine" eyewitness testimonies and documentary evidence proving that the Nazis massacred Polish officers in the Katyn Forest.
The Jerusalem District Court verdict (based largely on inadequate expert testimony) erroneously belabors the point that traces of extermination were obliterated at Treblinka and that this obliteration was utterly complete. On page 165 the verdict states: "As already reviewed and noted by us, Himmler's policy was to camouflage the extermination operation and not to leave any traces of the acts of horror and slaughter carried out maliciously and with intense planning by the Nazi regime."
On page 167, the Jerusalem District Court continued: "Bones which failed to disintegrate in the burning were well crushed and sifted until no remnant or evidence of the terrible horrors which had taken place there, was left within the limits of the Treblinka camp." (See photographs of numerous bones and skulls. These photos are kept at the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw which published some of them.) Exhibit 103.
On page 169, Judge Dov Levine of the Supreme Court wrote and opined: "We shall quote the descriptions of the removal of the bodies and corpses from the pits and the burning thereof from the emotional and accurate testimony of the witness Pinchas Epstein, (Exhibit 104) "... we would then crush the bones and sift them... The part that was not crushed, that remained on the sieve, was crushed once again, so that only fine ashes were scattered. Thus the prophecy of the prophet concerning "the dry bones" was not realized."
In contrast, numerous eye-level photographs of the Treblinka II Camp taken by the Soviet-Jewish commission in mid-August, 1944, revealed that the terrain of the camp's small mass grave was littered with human skulls and large bones. Exhibit 105. This hardly constitutes an effort by the punctilious Nazis to hide an extermination process. Perhaps the testimony of this survivor, now an accusatory eyewitness against Demjanjuk, was "emotional" as the verdict said, but it was hardly "accurate." Photographs taken during the subsequent forensic excavations, conducted by the Polish-Jewish commission of investigation in 1945, revealed a picture similar to that photographed by the Soviets in 1944 with addition of recent, Soviet post-explosion craters. Exhibit 106.
The absence of masses of bodies; the contradictory testimony by former inmates about the location of the supposed gas chambers; the failure to find foundations, terra cotta fragments, or other physical proof of buildings that were supposed to house gas chambers; and aerial and ground photos showing the actual size of mass graves all point to the fact that there is no conclusive proof of an extermination of 900,000 people as alleged by Israeli eyewitnesses.
There are numerous references in the survivor's testimony at Demjanjuk's trial in Israel, as well as the Encyclopedia Judaica
and the Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, which state that the method of mass murder used at the Treblinka II camp was the emission of carbon monoxide gas from the exhaust of a huge Diesel engine into a closed gas chamber containing human beings.
Indeed, carbon monoxide is an extremely potent and lethal poison. Accidental mass gassings with carbon monoxide occurred on a couple of occasions in the World War II era. In Spain and Italy, coal fired locomotives were unable to pull overloaded trains through mountain tunnels, and the exhausts of the stuck engines asphyxiated the passengers. On January 3, 1944 approximately 800 people died in the Torro Tunnel in Leon, Spain. And on March 3, 1944 approximately 600 people died in the province of Compaignia [Campania?] in a tunnel between Potenza and Salerno. These two examples from everyday life illustrate the lethal potential of carbon monoxide gas. Exhibit 107.
But according to the EPA and other sources, a Diesel engine, as opposed to an internal combustion or coal-fired steam engine produces little carbon monoxide gas. Exhibit 108. Another train tunnel episode illustrates this point. On May 13, 1988, an Amtrak train was stalled in a tunnel under the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. The tunnel quickly filled with fumes from the Diesel engine, and the train remained in the tunnel for nearly forty minutes. Of the 420 people on board, no one died, and only two small children showed symptoms from smoke inhalation. (Not necessarily from carbon monoxide; Diesel smoke in large quantities can cause headaches and nausea in some people, and these two
children were released from the emergency room after treatment.) Exhibit 109. A further illustration of the benign nature of Diesel smoke in closed environments is the case of the 35-mile-long tunnel under the English Channel from France to England. The electric locomotives used by the construction company building the tunnel had to be replaced by Diesel engines because of the danger posed by electrical leakage from the engines. Exhibit 110. They could hardly use Diesel engines in a tunnel if there were any real possibility of lethal emissions.
Numerous studies have been conducted on the chemical content of Diesel exhaust which refute eyewitness testimony that the method of mass execution was accomplished by that technique. The studies in Exhibit 111 illustrate this point. These U.S. government studies and others are self-explanatory, and we would like to submit them to the Court as documentary evidence that the eyewitness testimonies are incompatible with the technical evidence.
We would also like to point out that after the Second World War it was asserted that hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of people had been exterminated in gas chambers at the concentration camps at Dachau, Bergen-Belsen, Buchenwald, and other camps in the German Reich. Today, no one seriously makes that claim any longer. Exhibit 112. The story of gas chambers being used as a means of execution in the camps of the German Reich has quietly disappeared after numerous people pointed out glaring discrepancies in eyewitness testimony, and the technical impossibility of using the facilities for gassing. The gassing story, however, is still used
in the description of the camps in Occupied Poland, notably, for the purposes of this brief, in Treblinka II. We would like to submit to the Court the above documents in evidence which would show that homicidal gassing with Diesel exhaust is technically impossible.
In addition to eyewitness testimony, John Demjanjuk is supposedly further identified as "Ivan the Terrible" by an ID card issued at the Trawniki training camp by the SS. That card was brought to the Cleveland proceedings from the Soviet Embassy in Washington in February of 1981. It was allowed to be examined for a brief time only, and then it was quickly returned to the U.S.S.R. for safekeeping where it remained for six years. Exhibit 113. Until 1987, the Soviets maintained that the ID card of John Demjanjuk was the only extant ID card from the Trawniki camp. Exhibit 114.
Since the original card was in the Soviet Union, only out-of-focus, partially occluded, black and white enlargements were available for study in the U.S., and their poor resolution precluded meaningful analysis. Exhibit 115. There were four different versions of the ID card between 1977 and 1986 published in various sources. Exhibit 116. Questions were raised about the card's authenticity, especially since there were no other Trawniki ID cards known to exits [sic]. In 1987, through the auspices of Armand
Hammer, a fifth version of the card was brought to Israel for the Demjanjuk trial in Jerusalem. Exhibit 117. In addition, it was accompanied by three more "newly discovered" Trawniki ID cards which were provided to support the authenticity of the questioned Demjanjuk card. Exhibit 118. High resolution color photographs of the Demjanjuk ID card were not provided until Mr. Demjanjuk had already been extradited to Israel, so a historical examination of the ID card wasn't possible until the Court in Jerusalem made them available. Also, a forensic examination of the document was precluded by the original document's return to the Soviet Union.
Numerous historical and graphical discrepancies exist in the ID cards. Demjanjuk's ID card was supposedly issued in mid-1942, by Commissioner Odilo Globocnik. But SS-Reichsfuehrer Himmler dismissed Commissioner Globocnik in March of 1942, while Demjanjuk was still in the Red Army. Exhibit 119. The seal supposedly used by Globocnik is one that is more than a year out of date, and could not have been used by him. Exhibit 120.
Three of the ID cards [from] allegedly issued from Trawniki carry the stamp of the Waffen SS; but the Waffen SS did not take over Trawniki until 1943, a year after Demjanjuk supposedly departed from there. Exhibit 121.
On one of the other ID cards provided by the KGB, guard Juchnowoskij's [recte: Juchnowskij's] ID card, his picture is reversed (the buttons are on the left side of his military tunic, buttoning like a woman's blouse) while the numbers attached to the military tunic are not, proof that the picture was composed in a lab. Exhibit 122.
Two IDs bear the name of Corporal Teufel, but Teufel had been promoted to sergeant by Himmler personally, three months previously. Exhibit 123. In addition, the cards numbered #1393 (Demjanjuk's) and #1926 (Bodarenko's) were signed by Teufel with the rank of corporal, while the considerably lower number of #1211 (Wolembachow's) is signed by Teufel with the rank of sergeant. Exhibit 124. Teufel had been using his sergeant's stamp prior to the date of the alleged issue of the Demjanjuk ID, and would have suffered severe consequences by misstating his rank. Exhibit 125. In a like scenario on the Wolembachow ID card, SS Major Hermann Hoefle is given the rank of captain. Exhibit 126.
Many of the graphic elements of the official seals are inaccurate. In the Soviet-provided Juchnowskij ID, the right wingtip of the German eagle on the Trawniki card is grossly misaligned (about 18% off its axis) and points to the letter "i" in the word "Errichtung" on the rim of the seal, whereas in an authentic seal, the right wingtip points to the space between the words "die Errichtung." Exhibit 127. All official seals used by the SS were identical in nature except for a serial number. Exhibit 128. Also on the Juchnowskij ID, the SS symbol is printed in roman script; all SS documents and seals have runic thunderbolt symbols, one of the telltale markings that make it an official SS document or seal. Exhibit 129.
On Wolembachow's ID card, the stamp of the "District of Lublin, Trawniki Training Camp," is upside down on the card and almost illegible, hardly proper form for an official ID card of a
guardsman of the SS. Exhibit 130. We do not wish to belabor the point but other discrepancies in the ID cards have been noted and can be found in Documentation of the Forgery of John Demjanjuk's Trawniki ID Card. Exhibit 131.
Given the extraordinary amount of inconsistencies in both eyewitness and documentary evidence, we conclude that the identifying eyewitnesses were suffering from "Holocaust Survivor's Syndrome" (described in over 1,600 medical articles).
Soviet-provided ID cards are blatant forgeries ("signed" by SS officers using outdated ranks and seals which had been officially destroyed).
The survivors-eyewitnesses who claim diesel exhaust was used to kill masses of people cannot possibly be correct, since the 1962 Surgeon General Report to the U.S. Congress and the 1980 data of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency determined that diesel engine exhaust is non-lethal, while the 1989 report from the New Jersey Institute of Technology confirmed that technically it would not be feasible for diesel engines to be used in such a manner.
Serious doubt exists as to John Demjanjuk's presence at Treblinka II, since Jan Rogoza was determined by the District court at Siedlce, Poland in 1946 to be the chief of the
Ukrainian guards there, while Mr. Demjanjuk wasn't identified until the 1970s after two previous inquests and five previous trials.
Especially suspect is the identification of Ivan Marchenko, through Soviet-provided testimonies, whose intrinsic contradictions indicate that they were extorted by the NKVD from the captured Ukrainian guards from Treblinka I and II, much in the manner of the testimonies falsely alleging that the Katyn Forest Massacre was perpetrated by the Nazis.
The March 1, 1943 report of the Polish Government-in-Exile in London to the Allies' governments and the reports of the wartime underground Polish military intelligence put the annihilations of Jews at the Treblinka III camp, forty kilometers away from Treblinka II at the Czerwony Bor.
Doubt is also cast upon the veracity of the eyewitnesses, who identified Demjanjuk by the forensic and archeological investigation of the Treblinka II camp in the fall of 1945 by the District Court at Siedlce, which revealed absence of sufficiently large mass graves for about 900,000 victims.
We can only conclude that after careful analysis of available historic and forensic material, the previous experience of OSI with the unreliability of the Holocaust survivor testimony, acknowledged in internal writings of its past director, and the contradictions in the
respondent's eyewitness testimonies, that John Demjanjuk is innocent of the charges leveled against him.
[Signed : Ta. Skowron]
Secretary, Polish Historical Society
91 Strawberry Hill Ave., Suite 1038
Stamford, CT 06902