Stadler's statement made at Dortmund on 18th December 1962

 

    This statement forms a part of what I call, The Dortmund Hearings, which commenced in 1962 and ran on for several years. This particular hearing with Sylvester Stadler, was used to try and determine whether Heinrich Bernhard Lammerding, who had been the commander of the Das Reich Division at the time of the attack on Oradour-sur-Glane, was culpable of the crime and was to be allowed to be extradited by the French to stand trial in France for the attack. The conclusion, reached at the end of the hearings and after evaluating all the statements, was that Lammerding did not have a case to answer and so he was not allowed to be extradited to France. In fact he never stood trial in any country for the attack on Oradour-sur-Glane.

    It is noteworthy that it is quite common for the same Prosecuting Attorney and Justice Secretary to be used to take these statements, both when the person is making a further statement at a later date and when it is a different person making a statement. For example in this case involving Stadler, it was Prosecuting Attorney Siehlow and Justice Secretary Liebscher and these were the same two people that took Kahn's statement on 13th December 1962. The action of using the same investigators to take the statements of various witnesses is not unusual, but it does make the varied spellings of names a bit harder to understand. I would have thought that legal personnel would have taken great care over facts such as dates, time and names; yet in these statements there is often inaccuracy with names, particularly with that of Diekmann.

    This statement by Stadler is the first document, post-war, that I have seen in his own name. As such it is a valuable contribution to the sum of knowledge on the subject of Oradour, as he has often been quoted, but this is a first-hand account of his version of the story. Weidinger, in particular quotes Stadler's reaction to what Diekmann told him on his return from destroying Oradour and it is most interesting to hear from Stadler himself, some 18 years after the event.

    For comments on this statement, see notes made in italics throughout.


    Stadler's statement opens with the usual résumé of personal details, such as name, address and occupation, as well as a declaration that he was not related in any way to Lammerding. This declaration is consistent in all the statements that I have seen and it is quite understandable that the witnesses are showing that they have no family obligations towards Lammerding which might affect their testimony.

    He gave a summary of his career in the pre-war years and made it clear that he was an early joiner of the Waffen-SS. Joining it in fact in 1935 at the Berlin-Adlerhof barracks when the unit was known as the SS-VT (SS-Verfügungstruppe or Special Disposal Troops). It was only later that the SS Divisions acquired honour titles, such as, "Das Reich", for their units. It is also noteworthy that Stadler joined the Waffen-SS in Germany in 1935 as an Austrian citizen, some 3 years prior to the Anschluss. This shows us several things, one being that even in 1935, being Austrian was no bar to joining the German armed forces and another being that Stadler seemed to have been a real enthusiast in his regard for the Nazi ideals.

    He trained in the signals unit and served in what became the Der Führer Regiment until the spring of 1943 when he became the regimental commander whilst they were on the eastern front. Around Christmas 1943 he left Russia for France to oversee the 'freshening-up' of the Das Reich Division and acted as temporary divisional commander in France until the arrival of Lammerding from Russia in the spring of 1944. With effect from 1st June 1944 Stadler was in effect promoted to command the 9th SS-Panzer Division, Hohenstaufen, but due to the tense situation on the western front he temporarily stayed in place as the Der Führer commander. Otto Weidinger came to Der Führer in order to be familiarized by Stadler, pending his own promotion to take over command of the regiment on the 14th June. The result was that both Sylvester Stadler and Otto Weidinger were present in Limoges on Saturday 10th June 1944 and both were present when Adolf Diekmann made his reports about Oradour and the kidnapping of Helmut Kämpfe.

    Stadler stated that when the Normandy invasion began, he and the rest of Das Reich made ready for the march north and that he personally was unaware of any atrocities said to have been perpetrated by the German armed forces whilst on the march to Limoges. Naturally, with the passage of 18 years since the events of 1944, Stadler was not always able to supply exact dates, or names of either people or places. What he did say, seems to match what others have said, namely that Das Reich suffered attacks by the French Resistance and that the march route was not an easy one. Stadler and the rest of the regimental staff arrived in Limoges on 8th June and set up a temporary headquarters there.

    Stadler said that he had sent Helmut Kämpfe off north on the task of helping the Germans located at Guéret, but that Kämpfe had been kidnapped by the French Resistance on the way back. He further said that whilst he was in  American detention post war, he was told by a French officer that Kämpfe had been killed the same day (9th June). He said that the disappearance of Kämpfe was depressing to them, because he was a capable and popular officer. In order to try and secure his release, Stadler had the approval of the divisional commander Lammerding, to use a captured resistance man as a go-between to barter for Kämpfe's release. The offered terms were, the release of 30 captured resistance personnel and the payment of 10 - 15,000 Francs (this was a truly extraordinary offer for an SS-Division to make). A deadline was set by which the resistance man was to report back after his release and he did call back to say that he had not yet found his "chief", who would have been Georges Guingouin and asked for an extension to the deadline; this was granted by Stadler but nothing more was heard. This silence tends to support the idea that by now Kämpfe was already dead and that the Resistance had nothing to negotiate with.

    In the night of 9 / 10 June Kämpfe's personal papers were handed in, after being found in a street in Limoges. Stadler was no longer sure who found the papers, but they were taken at the time as an indication that Kämpfe was still alive. What is not clear, is whether the papers were found before, or after the Resistance man telephoned.

    In the morning of the 10th June Karl Gerlach, dressed  only in underwear arrived in Limoges and told Stadler of his experiences at the hands of the resistance. It was at this point that the name of Oradour-sur-Glane was first mentioned.

    Shortly after Gerlach arrived back at his headquarters in Limoges, Adolf Diekmann also arrived from St. Junien with the story of a captured German officer being held by the resistance. Stadler was no longer sure if the name of Oradour came from Gerlach alone, or if Diekmann also mentioned it. He did say that the name of Oradour-sur-Vayres was not mentioned by anyone at this time. Stadler now stated that in view of the urgency of the situation, Lammerding gave him complete authority to deal with the matter as he saw fit. Then Stadler in the presence of Weidinger, his Adjutant, Werner and possibly also Gerlach, gave Diekmann orders to go to Oradour with one company and free Kämpfe. He was to take a large number of hostages if Kämpfe was not found, so as to be in a strong bargaining position with the resistance to secure the release of Kämpfe. Diekmann left Limoges and travelled back to St. Junien to organise the rescue mission to Oradour-sur-Glane.

    Diekmann reported back as it was getting dark and said that he had had to fight his way into Oradour, but had not found any trace of Kämpfe, so he shot all the men of Oradour who were surely members of the resistance and burned down the houses from which shots had been fired.

    In reply to questioning about Diekmann's character, Stadler said that he was a, "go-getter" and very dynamic (this remark had in fact been made by Stadler on Diekmann's performance review on 1st June 1944, just 9 days before the events at Oradour took place).

    Stadler said that he was very shocked and angry with Diekmann at his news, as he had specifically ordered the taking of hostages if Kämpfe were not to be found and that Diekmann could now expect to face a court-marshal over his conduct of the action and his failure to follow orders. Stadler also made the comment, that Diekmann did not mention the killing of the women and children at this time and that he only found out about it later. This is significant, because Weidinger in his writings about the event, said that Stadler was shocked at the news about the women and children and the strong impression was given that he had been told all the news at the same time. Stadler did say that Weidinger and the Adjutant Werner had been present throughout Diekmann's account and that Diekmann only mentioned burning down the houses from which the had been shot at and not the whole village. He also mentioned that ammunition and explosive ad been present in the houses used by the resistance and that these had exploded when the houses were burned. Diekmann was ordered to immediately prepare a written report of his actions for submission to the Divisional Court.

    What is significant about this account, is the mention of arms and ammunition being present and their exploding when the properties were set on fire; this is something not mentioned at all by Kahn in his statements (remember that Kahn was actually in Oradour and saw the events first hand). Another strange thing is Stadler's saying that Diekmann reported 8-9 German casualties killed from the action, whereas Kahn only mentioned one man wounded when the troops set off explosives of their own in the church.

    Stadler again emphasised how upset he was with what Diekmann had told him and that he must expect court-marshal proceedings to follow.

    Stadler made the curious remark that he did not discuss the case with Kahn and this is strange given Kahn's very high regard for Stadler and I would have thought that Kahn would have sought out Stadler after the action in order to present his version of events. Reading Kahn's statement gives me the strong impression that the two must have had some exchange over the event before Stadler left the regiment.

    Stadler again stated that he was unaware of the deaths of the women and children and that he only found out about it later, but he did not say when.

    Post-war Stadler was held in American captivity but he was not allowed to be extradited by the French to stand trial in France for any war-crimes associated with the Der Führer regiment.

    Stadler, like Kahn expressed scepticism about the statement by Rudolf Lusar and his meeting Diekmann in Bordeaux and I do personally have difficulty in seeing how it could be literally true. I feel that there is a good degree of confusion here and not a little obfuscation, but by whom and for what purpose, I am unsure.

    When reading Stadler's statement it must be remembered that he had led a most eventful life, especially during the war years and some degree of confusion / forgetfulness is only to be expected when being interviewed some 18 years after the event. Nevertheless it is obvious from even the most casual reading of his statement that Lammerding was not involved in sending troops to Oradour-sur-Glane and the only name mentioned in that context was Sylvester Stadler himself. Stadler does not attempt to evade, or mitigate the issue; it was he who ordered Diekmann to go to Oradour to rescue Kämpfe. Lammerding was only brought into the case after the event, with the request to set up a court-marshal for Diekmann's actions.

    As is almost universal in these statements Diekmann's name is misspelled, in this case as, "Dieckmann", but there are no additional misspellings of his name, such as Dikmann etc.

    Read Stadler's own account (shown below) of his actions and make your own mind up about events of 10th June 1944.

 


 

45 Js 2/62 (Case file reference) Dortmund: 18-12-1962 

Present:

Prosecuting attorney Siehlow 

Justice-employee Liebscher as secretary 

Here appeared the merchant Sylvester Stadler from Trier and had explained to him the purpose of the interview (to determine if Lammerding had a case to answer in France) and that he was admonished to tell the truth as a witness in accordance with Statue ? 55 StPO: 

Personal details: 

I am called Sylvester Stadler, born on the 30-12-1910 in Fohnsdorf / Styria (located in present-day Austria), now resident in Trier, by occupation a merchant and with the accused Lammerding related neither by blood nor marriage. 

 

The matter: 

During the war I was a member of the Waffen-SS, after I had entered it already with the raising of the SS-VT (SS-Verfügungstruppe, or Special Disposal Troops) in 1935 at Berlin-Adlerhof and belonged to the Signals Unit at the beginning of the war as an SS-Hauptsturmführer. In the western campaign of 1940, I went to the "Der Führer" Regiment,  in order to take over command of a company. In this regiment I was a Battalion Commander and later, Regimental Commander. I took over the regiment in the spring of 1943. After the Das Reich Division was replaced at the Eastern Front, about Christmas 1943, in order to be 'freshened-up' in France, I went to the west with one of the first march-groups, and led the division as a deputy, up to the arrival of Lammerding. On the 1st June 1944 I was ordered from the regiment to attend a divisional-leaders course and simultaneously transferred to the leader-reserve. In consideration of the tense situation in the west and the thought of a sudden invasion, Lammerding did not send me off, but left me as commander of the regiment. At this time however, my successor Sturmbannführer Weidinger, was already staying with the staff.

The division was at the beginning of June 1944 in southwest-France and was virtually ready for deployment. I myself stayed with my staff in Moissac while the battalions were in small towns to the east and west of this place. I want to place an elaboration of this, that I made in 1950 in cooperation with Stückler, the Ia (Divisional Officer) of the Division, insofar that at short notice today I produced a photocopy (not part of this testimony)

When the invasion began in Normandy, our division was alerted and made march-ready. I think that it was on the 7. 6. 1944 that as a Task Force the Regiment was placed in march under my leadership. To this Task Force, which included the I. and III, battalions under the leadership of the SS-Sturmbannführers Dieckmann (sic) and Kämpfe; furthermore was added a battalion of the sister-regiment "Deutschland" under the leadership of Sturmbannführer Schreiber. Furthermore the Assault Gun detachment, or a part of it, was subordinated to the Task Force under the leadership of SS-Hauptsturmführer Kraak.  

The question submitted to me is whether the deployments in southwest-France had already taken place before this use in Normandy. In this context, the accusation was stated to me that the division as well as parts of the division would have been involved on the 30-5-1944 with the deportation of 1200 people from Eysses, of whom approximately 400 people were murdered. I heard this accusation today for the first time. I checked my report again today and nothing about this incident was in it. I know only of an incident in Figeac, which I have discussed on page 4f of my presented elaboration. More I cannot say to the affair (so long after the events it is not always realistic to expect perfect recall of all details).

 

After discussion: 

It is not impossible that the incident written about by me in my report on Figeac is identical to the older report which also mentioned Figeac. I myself cannot say anything about this matter with which to reproach myself, however it is about fighting with partisans as well as members of the Maquis, that the front developed into during the advance, as being the most important thing. However I must remark, that large-scale fighting didn't take place, and also that reprisals were not executed against the civilian population. 

The advance in a northerly direction began in Montauban and had the city of Limoges as its goal. The staff reached the city of Limoges in the evening of the 8th June 1944, or better said in the night between the 8th to the 9th June 1944. The march route of the Battle-Group corresponded to that of the main road. I know that the area to the west and east of the main road, admittedly still belonged to our protection area, however, for example, Tulle did not lie in our patrol area.

It has been put before me that a report is available covering the time from 4th to 7th June 1944 showing that a detachment of the Division occupied the town of Aurillac and shot 4 people there. I looked at the location of the city on the map and think that it was pretty much impossible for it to be affected by the Division, as it lay too far to the east of the advance. Generally I must say that the advance area, through which the division moved northward, was very narrow (This sounds like an attempt to put the blame for an atrocity onto a convenient scapegoat. Das Reich was something of a Bogy Man and tended to get the blame for things it perhaps had nothing at all to do with).

 

On questioning: 

It is not known to me that additional Waffen-SS units in Southwest France had been in use during June 1944.

 As I arrived in Limoges on the evening of the 8th June 1944, I first reported to the headquarters of the German armed forces, which were under the command of a general. During the time of the occupation of Limoges my regiment was subordinated to the general. That night, I was ordered to send a Battalion of the regiment to the north-east to relieve trapped German detachments and units. For this task, I detached the III. Battalion under SS-Sturmbannführer Kämpfe, which executed the order on the morning of 9th June 1944. On the return from this task, it was probable that Kämpfe was captured by French forces in a surprise attack. In any case, the unit came back without him. Attempts to find him in the area failed. In American captivity, a French interrogation-officer later told me that Kämpfe was shot on the same day. (This is intriguing, how did the "French interrogation officer" know that Kämpfe was shot the same day?).

The loss of Kämpfe was depressing for us, because he was a popular officer and I appreciated him as a particularly reliable leader. I was now concerned what I could do to obtain his freedom because I still reckoned that he was alive. I mean that I sought the approval of Lammerding, who was in Tulle on the evening of 9th June 1944, to negotiate a ransom with the resistance for the release of Kämpfe. I now know that with the agreement of Lammerding and after corresponding negotiations with the local SD, I got a captured resistance leader for this purpose, so that in the evening of 9th June 1944 I had him released and sent him off to negotiate the release of Kämpfe. It may be that I gave a bounty as prepayment to him, however I expressly promised that on the release of Kämpfe approximately 30 - 35 additional prisoners would be released. Furthermore, 10 - 15000 francs in ransom should be paid. This Frenchman had received a time from me by which he should report again. He actually reported, in fact by telephone, with which he informed me, that he had not yet been successful in entering into connection with the French unit, that had Kämpfe in custody. He asked for a deadline extension. This telephone call should have been made sometime during the night hours between the 10th to the 11th June 1944. Since I had already gotten the marching order for the following day, I extended the period until this point. This Frenchman didn't report again. Anyway, a telephone call or a message from him did not reach me.

It has been put to me that it seems strange under the circumstances to let a French resistance leader and his companion go with a motor vehicle and not have him return. I justify this exceptional restraint with the circumstance that Kämpfe was so valuable to us that we could accept and believe the French resistance leaders assurances. 

By the way, this plan had found not only the approval of Lammerding, but also the German general of Limoges (Garrison Troops) and the local SD-department agreed. The German headquarters generally agreed and they also made available a vehicle for the Frenchmen. Broadly it has to be said that the division was not used for fighting the resistance in France, even if earlier it had done so in Russia due to the special situation there. (This is truly extraordinary, an SS-Division prepared to pay a ransom and indulge in a prisoner swap with people whom they regarded as gangsters).

 

I am being misunderstood: 

The division was never involved in the east (in Russia) with fighting partisans, nor had it ever received orders against partisans. It was not even trained for the special particulars of this fighting. Therefore there was an uneasiness within the division that it was involved with such fighting during the advance. 

In the morning of the l0th June 1944, a man, I cannot even say whether he was German or French, handed over Kämpfe's personnel-papers to the staff. The papers were found on the streets of Limoges. This circumstance encouraged me into assuming that Kämpfe was still alive and being held nearby. 

During the course of the morning, SS-Obersturmführer Gerlach reported to me at my command post in shirt and underpants and reported that he had barely escaped from a French firing squad. Gerlach, who belonged to the assault gun group had been sent forward after Nieul to arrange quarters. During this reconnaissance-trip, he had fallen into the hands of the French Maquis that had taken him from one place to the other in the course of the day and finally to a wooded area to the west or north of Oradour-sur-Glane in order to shoot him there. Because of all the detail, I take Gerlach's story by reference to an interrogation that I previously had, I put a photocopy of this at your disposal. This interrogation was carried out after the war and corresponds to the events insofar, as I experienced them together with Gerlach. On this occasion I heard the name of the place Oradour-sur-Glane for the first time. 

Gerlach was supposed to have reported to me in the morning hours. Some hours later, it may have been about noon, orders were issued to the commanders subordinate to me. Since the divisional orders were not yet available, this issuing of orders had been delayed. In the meantime Sturmbannführer Dieckmann (sic) appeared and reported that it had been reported to him that a high ranking German officer was being held in Oradour by the French. At the same time he suggested that it could be Kämpfe. It is possible that Dieckmann (sic) himself offered to free Kämpfe. 

After the news had been given to Gerlach about Oradour-sur-Glane, Dieckmann (sic) combined the news about Oradour with the Oradour-sur-Glane mentioned by Gerlach. It may be possible though that Dieckmann (sic)  also said Oradour-sur-Glane. (Remember that in 1944 there were 6 different places in France with "Oradour" in their titles and confusion between them was a distinct possibility: see The Oradours of France for more detail).

 

After being reproached.

I admit that I have heard the name Oradour-sur-Vayres, however that name was not familiar to me at the time. Anyway, only the place mentioned by Gerlach tallied with Oradour. Oradour-sur-Glane lay approximately 20 km from Limoges. 

As I got the news from Dieckmann (sic), from memory, I spoke with Lammerding that morning. He should have seen me in Limoges that morning and told me about the incident in Tulle. We discussed what measures should be taken to mitigate the increasingly bold actions of the resistance. I told Lammerding on that occasion about my plan to free Kämpfe and he was in agreement with me. We had also decided that in the meantime to dismiss from custody a French Work-Service battalion from Tulle. (These men were particularly unreliable and there are several stories about them changing sides after D-Day). I then at this opportunity sought agreement to immediately initiate measures for the release of Kämpfe when the news was certain. On the other hand, Lammerding had unequivocally given me the order at this opportunity, contrary to the order of the Commander in Chief West (this was Hugo Sperrle) that captured Frenchmen, who still had their arms with them, were to be shot; but instead to treat them as prisoners. It was also said that the order to burn down houses from which we had been shot at, was no longer to be executed. The consideration was to no longer heed the order of the Commander in Chief West, but to accelerate the movement of the division without losses to the Normandy deployment area. I have kept before me that the order of the Commander in Chief West to shoot Frenchmen found with gun in hand was not just talk. Simply that on attacks or raids, an immediate return of fire was to be made (Bd. I Bll 65 f. d. A.) 

I will explain this; it is in my memory, that at the time, there was a command as I described, which was amended by Lammerding. After Dieckmann (sic) had reported the news to me about the officer in Oradour, I saw that in accordance with the agreement of Lammerding I should give orders to secure his release through the use of our own forces. As a result, I gave the following command to Dieckmann (sic) in the presence of Weidinger, my adjutant Werner and possibly Gerlach  

To give the gist of it: (Stadler's orders to Diekmann to rescue Kämpfe). To occupy the place of Oradour-sur-Glane with approximately one company and free Kämpfe. Avoid shooting if possible on this occasion however, so that we get Kämpfe back healthy. For the case, that Kämpfe is not found in Oradour however, take as many hostages as possible so that we can offer a high number of Maquis for the exchange of Kämpfe.

 

Question: (all questions were put by Prosecuting attorney Siehlow to Stadler) 

Following your order it seems that your idea was to get Kämpfe back again in German hands by way of a surprise attack without the use of arms. Did you express to Dieckmann (sic) by way of issued orders, what he should do if he was involved in combat operations? What was intended in this case? 

Answer: (all answers were by Stadler) 

When I gave the command to Dieckmann (sic), I assumed that from their previous experiences, the French Maquis would not fight advancing German units if they felt themselves inferior. In this case, they evacuated the terrain without fighting and left it to our troops. I thought that if a united company came to occupy such a small place, the French resistance fighters would not dare to oppose the troops. However I assumed that a large group of resistance fighters were not occupying Oradour. To this first question, I may say that I gave no specific commands as to what to do in the case of meeting resistance or fighting. It was clear that in such a case Dieckmann (sic) could strike back.

 

Question: How do you judge the personality of Dieckmann (sic)? Was he the sort of person, that would immediately fight back with the resistance?

Answer: Yes, I can imagine that. He was a go-getter type of person.

 

Question: As you said, the business was an especially delicate issue. Did you give Dieckmann (sic) any special verbal orders? 

Answer: I believe that is probable, because we cared greatly about regaining Kämpfe alive. Dieckmann (sic) left the command post, which I had set-up in a hotel. He only reported again in fact, when it was dark. He reported to me something like: Oradour had to be taken in a skirmish. The population was involved with the Maquis in the fighting and he had high losses as a result. As a result he had 183 men shot and the houses, from which he was shot at, burned down. Of Kämpfe, he found no trace.

 

Question

With the expression of the news was there any clue as to how the fighting with the population occurred?

Answer: Dieckmann (sic) reported to me that during the entry of the company with Kahn, they had been shot at from behind and thus had to fight.

 

Question: Did Dieckmann (sic) say whether the losses were incurred at the start of the raid or later? 

Answer: To my knowledge, he spoke of approximately 8-9 casualties when they entered, I can say no more.

 

Question: Did Dieckmann (sic) report also something about measures taken against the French women and childRené  

Answer: No, I only heard later, that women and children also died in this action. My reaction to Dieckmann's (sic) news, was at first, that he had made a great action of it in spite of my orders, above all the shooting of the men, although I had expressly ordered the taking of prisoners. Also I had not said anything about burning down the place. I was extremely emotional over this development and spoke to Dieckmann (sic) with powerful words about the account, and I told him, that he must reckon with a court-martial procedure because of this high-handedness. Simultaneously, I ordered him to immediately submit a written skirmish-report. I don't remember Dieckmann (sic) raising any objections on this occasion. I myself reported the news of this behaviour of Dieckmann (sic) to Lammerding and asked for court marshal proceedings. When Dieckmann (sic) gave this news, Weidinger and my adjutant Werner were certainly present. I didn't talk about the issue with Kahn.

It was said to me by both Lammerding and Weidinger that the orders I had given Dieckmann (sic) should specifically have said that he should not get involved in fighting. I maintain that my orders were those as given on page 9 (of this statement). It seems to me, that this representation of Lammerding and Weidinger is somewhat unrealistic, because if we were attacked at that time, we had to hit back. A non-observance would be taken as cowardice. 

When Dieckmann (sic) and also Lammerding testify, that Dieckmann (sic) reported that he had been shot at on approaching the place, it is in my memory that Dieckmann (sic) spoke to me of being attacked from the rear. However today I am not certain about everything. However, I know exactly, that he didn't speak of the burning down of the entire place in his first report, but only of firing the houses, from which he was shot at.

That of Lammerding and also Weidinger mentioned explosions of ammunition, however I only found this out later in conversation. With the first news, nothing was mentioned of this. From memory, I myself left the regiment on 14 June 1944 for Germany and shortly after, took over command of the SS-Hohenstaufen Division.

If Lammerding says, that Dieckmann (sic) mentioned in his first report, about the confinement of the women and children in the church, whose rescue was not possible because of the breaking out of the conflagration due to exploding ammunition; I say with determination that Dieckmann's (sic) initial report did not contain anything about this. I first found out this version from later conversations. 

The account by Weidinger in Bd.I Bl 102/103 was read in excerpts to me. This account could be possible. I cannot in fact remember all these details anyway.

Because of the incident at Oradour I have been interrogated by the French whilst in captivity. It is not known to me if I was therefore later put under accusation. Probably I found out because of another incident, that I was involved in through a French court-marshal, the result is not known to me. Anyway, I was not delivered from American captivity (he was not handed over to the French). 

The statement on the following sides (Band II Bl. 18) by Lusar, was read to me in excerpts, respecting the meeting with Dieckmann (sic) in Bordeaux. I don't remember any feedback in Limoges from Dieckmann (sic) about Bordeaux up to my departure from the regiment. Also the portrayal by Lusar over the story that Diekmann (sic) gave him as an explanation for his behaviour, is to me inexplicable. But as I said, I cannot take any position about Lusar's portrayal.

Excerpts of the depiction by Kahn were read to me. Also this was surprising to me especially since they agreed with the French reports at some points. I've had no connection with him after the war and believe that he has made a account unburdening himself. However I notice that Gerlach reported in the interrogation-transcript given to me, that Kahn was shot at in the approach to Oradour as Kahn himself told him. Insofar, a clarification will only be possible through a questioning of Gerlach. Also, I encourage you to question my adjutant Werner.

The location of Lenz is not known to me. He had been moved a short time previously from the air force to the regiment and therefore was still relatively young. He had however already a rank (meaning that he was an NCO).

 

The protocol was dictated aloud in my presence and corresponds to my statements and I worked on the formulation of a part of the sentences myself. I therefore forgo another reading.

 

(approved, signed) ... Sylvester Stadler

Closed:

Siehlow: State Prosecutor

Liebscher: Legal Secretary



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