David Irving, Hitler and Holocaust Denial: Electronic Edition, by Richard J. Evans

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(C) The correspondence between Wolff and Dr. Albert Ganzemüller277

1. The clearing of the ghettos in the General Government in Poland began in 1942, beset sometimes by transportation blockages, the first in June and the second in July. In July the railway line to the killing centre at Sobibor broke down and had to be repaired. On 16 July 1942 Wolff telephoned State Secretary [Staatssekretär] Dr. Albert Ganzenmüller of the transport ministry for help. Ganzenmüller looked into the matter and discovered that it had already been solved locally. 300,000 Warsaw Jews had been diverted from Sobibor to Treblinka. Beginning on 22 July 1942 a train a day, each packed with some 5,000 Jews was to leave Warsaw for Treblinka, while twice weekly another train was to run from Przemysl to Belzec.278 Wolff wrote in thanks:
Dear Party Member G[anzenmüller]:
For your letter of 28 July 1942, I thank you - also in the name of the Reichsführer-SS - sincerely. With particular joy I noted your assurance that for two weeks now a train has been carrying, every day, 5,000 members of the chosen people to Treblinka, so that we are now in a position to carry through this population movement at an accelerated tempo. I, for my part, have contacted the participating agencies to assure the implementation of the process without friction. I thank you again for your efforts in this matter   and, at the same time, I would be grateful if you would give these things your continued personal attention. With best regards and Heil Hitler! Your devoted W.279
2. Wolff's defence was simple. Himmler and Higher SS and Police Leader [Höherer SS- und Polizeiführer - HSSPF] Odilo Globocnik had lied to him.280 Himmler had told him in July 1942 that because of increasing partisan activities he had been forced to dissolve the large and small ghettos in Poland and to herd them together in a sort of reservation in Lublin. The fertile earth and the fact that many Jews were able craftsmen would allow some of the Jews self-sufficiency. Others would work in large concentration camps manufacturing German armaments. Himmler asked him to look into the transportation problems that were preventing moving Polish Jews to the Lublin area. He had taken Himmler's explanation at face value.
3. The fact that he was ignorant of the ultimate fate of those transported from Warsaw was proven, he claimed, by the fact that his letter of thanks bore no secret stamp and the fact that he explicitly spoke of a 'population movement' [Bevölkerungsbewegung]. He had not approved of the expression 'chosen people' [auserwähltes Volk], but the letter had been drawn up by his assistant at Himmler's field commando post in Shitomir. Wolff was alone in the   Führerhauptquartier in Winniza and did not want to delay matters by demanding a redrafting. The court found that it did not believe Wolff's line of defence 'because it is not the truth'.281
4. Irving quoted the notorious Wolff-Ganzenmüller exchange, but added that Wolff was 'as ignorant as Ganzenmüller of the true functions of Treblinka extermination camp.'282 Irving's own files contain a further piece of incriminating documentation. On Wolff's instructions, extracts from Ganzenmüller's letter of 28 July were forwarded to the very men most responsible for the murder of the Jews in the General Government of Poland: Globocnik and HSSPF Friedrich Krüger, as well as Obersturmbannführer Rudolf Brandt of Himmler's Personal Staff.283 Ganzenmüller himself faced a court in Düsseldorf in 1973 where he claimed to have seen and known nothing about the fate of the Jews. The presiding judge asked him incredulously if he was supposed to believe Ganzenmüller's claim to have signed, but to have taken no notice of the content, of a secret letter addressed to the office of the second most important man in the 'Third Reich'.284 There can be no claim that Irving was unaware of the grounds for Wolff's prosecution and imprisonment, as Elke Fröhlich had informed him as early as 1971 that: 'The Jewish affair is making progress. For example the indictment in the court case against Wolff of 19. 4. 63.'285


277. NO - 2207, reproduced in Raul Hilberg, Sonderzuge nach Auschwitz (Mainz, 1981), pp. 177 and 181.
278. Staatsekretär Ganzenmüller to Ogruf. Wolff, 28 July 1942, NO-2207, Sonderzuge, p. 177.
279. 'Lieber Parteigenosse Ga.[nzenmüller] Für Ihr Schreiben vom 28.7.1942 danke ich Ihnen - auch im Namen des Reichsführers-SS - herzlich. Mit besonderer Freude habe ich von Ihrer Mitteilung Kenntnis genommen, daß nun schon seit 14 Tagen täglich ein Zug mit je 5.000 Angehörigen des auserwählten Volkes nach Treblinka fährt und wir doch auf diese Weise in die Lage versetzt sind, diese Bevölkerungsbewegung in einem beschleunigten Tempo durchzuführen. Ich habe von mir aus mit den beteiligten Stellen Führung genommen, so dass eine reibungslose Durchführung der gesamten Massnahmen gewährleistet erscheint. Ich danke Ihnen nochmals für die Bemühungen in dieser Angelegenheit und darf Sie gleichzeitig bitten, diesen Dingen auch weiterhin ihre Beachtung zu schenken. Mit besten Grüßen und Heil Hitler!' (Wolff to Ganzenmüller, NO-2207, Sonderzuge, p. 181).
280. Odilo Globocnik [1904 - 1905] oversaw the murder of the Jews in the General Government and Bialystock. He oversaw the construction of Majdanek and later Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka. For a short biographical sketch see Enzyklopädie des Holocaust, vol. I, pp. 546 - 47.
281. Justiz und NS-Verbrechen, vol. XX, pp. 460-61, §36.
282. Hitler's War, p. 858.
283. File 51b, Judenfrage 1942 - 1945, Persönlicher Stab RFSS to Brandt, Globocnik, and Krüger, Führerhauptquartier, 18 August 1942.
284. Sonderzuge, p. 244.
285. Document 305, Elke Fröhlich to Irving, 25 August 1971.
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accessed 12 March 2013