great letter, in particular “For our German readers, from R.F.” His reprint of Dr. Ventker’s recollection reminded me of a passage in H.-U. Rudel’s book “Trotzdem”. Rudel mentions the same incident and for the benefit of our English speaking readers I’ll try to translate both.
“…we were interogated by three Colonels from the General Staff. For openers they showed us pictures, which they claimed, showed the atrocities in concentration camps. They claimed it proved that since we had fought for the regime which had caused all this, we were just as guilty for what had taken place.
They did not believe me, when I told them that I had never seen anything about concentration camps. I went on to explain that, if such incidences really had happened, that this was regretable and objectionable and that those truely responsible for it, that they would have to be punished. However, things like this did not happen in Germany alone, they ocurred in all countries and throughout the ages. For example the case of the Boors in South Africa.
Things like this must be measured alike. I also said that I could not immagine that the mountains of dead korpses shown in the pictures came from concentration camps. I explained that such pictures, not on paper but in reality, came into existance after the air attacks on Dresden, Hamburg and other cities, which had been indescriminately destroyed with incendiary and explosive bombs. Uncounted numbers of women and children had found their deaths this way.”
(From page 231)
Here is Dr. Ventker’s declaration under oath:
“I, Dr. August Friedrich Ventker, born on the 27th of October, 1907 in Brockhausen, Osnabrück, wish to testify in the Zündel proceedings in Toronto, Canada and provide the following statement under oath: My cousin Ernst Niermann from Diepholz was an officer and as such assigned as crewmember to Colonel Hans-Ulrich Rudel. Both had migrated to Argentina (after the war.) My cousin Niermann told me what happened when he was taken prisoner in 1945. He was brought into a room by an English Colonel. On the table in the room were fotographs. The Colonel said: “take a look at these picture of the mountains of dead corpses in concentration camps . Here you can see what kind of a regime you fought for.”
After my cousin studied the fotographs for a while he turned to the Colonel and said: “Colonel, this is fraud! Those mountains of dead corpses were from Dresden. I know the city very well. Shall I name this street here, this one or this place?” During the attack on Dresden Rudel and I were on the ‘Autobahn’. After the attack was over we drove into the city and helped for several days with the clean-up. We were there when these mountains of dead corpses were collected.
The English Colonel was furious: “Out with you, to room 11!”I, (Ventker,) was so shocked by this narative that it remained pretty much verbatim in my memory. (Signed:) Dr. Ventker