Jaeger on the Extermination of Lithuanian Jews
(December 1, 1941)
Extract from a report by Karl Jaeger, Commander of Einsatzkommando 3, on the extermination of Lithuanian Jews:
Commander of the Security Police and the SD
Kovno, December 1, 1941
Reich Secret Document
Final Summary of Executions carried out in the operating area of EK [Einsatzkommando] 3 up to December 1, 1941
... I can confirm today that Einsatzkommando 3 has achieved the goal of solving the Jewish problem in Lithuania. There are no more Jews in Lithuania, apart from working Jews and their families.
in Shavli, about 4,500
in Kovno, about 15,000
in Vilna, about 15,000
I wanted to eliminate the working Jews and their families as well, but the Civil Administration ( Reichskommissar ) and the Wehrmacht attacked me most sharply and issued a prohibition against having these Jews and their families shot.
The goal of clearing Lithuania of Jews could only be achieved through the establishment of a specially selected Mobile Commando under the command of SS Obersturmfuehrer Hamann, who adopted my aims fully and who was able to ensure the cooperation of the Lithuanian Partisans and the Civil Authorities concerned.
The carrying out of such Aktionen is first of all an organizational problem. The decision to clear each sub-district systematically of Jews called for a thorough preparation for each Aktion and the study of local conditions. The Jews had to be concentrated in one or more localities and, in accordance with their numbers, a site had to be selected and pits dug. The marching distance from the concentration points to the pits averaged 4 to 5 kms. The Jews were brought to the place of execution in groups of 500, with at least 2 kms. distance between groups... All the officers and men of my command in Kovno took an active part in the Grossaktionen in Kovno. Only one official of the intelligence corps was released from participation on account of illness.
I consider the Aktionen against the Jews of EK 3 to be virtually completed. The remaining working Jews and Jewesses are urgently needed, and I can imagine that this manpower will continue to be needed urgently after the winter has ended. I am of the opinion that the male working Jews should be sterilized immediately to prevent reproduction. Should any Jewess nevertheless become pregnant, she is to be liquidated....
Source: Yad Vashem Archives, O-18/245.
Source: Yad Vashem