Document Analyst's Report

During January I completed the prosecution documents on the SS as a criminal organization and began the documents on the Gestapo and the Security Service (SD), amounting to 136 documents and 903 pages of material. The prosecution's separate treatment of these overlapping organizations was part historical and part functional. The SS (including the SD) was first charged as a multifaceted institution that originated in the party, and then later took over the police system. The Gestapo began as a governmental police organization, which was later brought within the SS system, and was paired with the SD; the SD was the "intelligence" service and the Gestapo was the "executive" force.

Ashes: In September 1942 the concentration camps were ordered to stop sending the ashes of dead Czech and Jewish inmates back to their home communities, as the ashes had become the focal point of posters, demonstrations, and pilgrimages.

The prosecutor and the SS: In the summer of 1933 prosecutors at Munich investigated suspicious deaths at Dachau, including killings by camp guards and cover-ups by senior officers. One prosecutor, Karl Winterbersger, briefed Himmler on the case and was assured that the SS would cooperate with the investigation. By the end of the year provincial leaders received a quite different message from Himmler, that the investigation would damage the reputation of the SA, the SS, and the government, and they agreed that the case "should be quashed for state political reasons."

The bill for services rendered: In 1943 the Natzweiler concentration camp presented an invoice to the security police for the execution and cremation of 20 prisoners: 127 Reichmarks.

A familiar phrase: In February 1944 the security police distributed a set of instructions to its offices regarding the treatment of prisoners. The title requires no elaboration: "Subject: Intensified Interrogations."

Matt Seccombe, 1 Feb 2019