Nuremberg (Dec. 19)
A confession by Joseph Kramer, executed former commandant of the Belsen concentration camp, that he had murdered 86 Jews at the order of several of the defendants in the trial of 23 Nazi doctors, was introduced at the trial today by American prosecutors.
The Jews were part of a group of 121 who were murdered so that their skeletons could be used to complete a collection in the Strasbourg Institute of Science, which was then under control of the Nazis, Kramer’s confession said that the doctors’ assistants furnished him with gas to kill the victims, and that he had shipped the bodies to the museum immediately afterwards. The murders were committed at the Natzweiler concentration camp near Strasbourg in Aug., 1943.
The prosecution also introduced an affidavit from Rudolf Brandt, Himmler’s administrative officer, stating that Karl Brandt, Hitler’s personal physician and chief defendant, initiated jaundice experiments using Jews as patients.
Other affidavits by defendants Fritz Fischer and Herta Oberhauser, a woman, both of whom were physicians at the Ravensbruck concentration camp, described experiments carried out on Jewish and Polish women in which legs were amputated and the stumps infected with wood shavings and shards of glass and then treated with sulfanilamide. Many of the victims died as a result of the experiments and the remainder were crippled and disfigured, the affidavits said.