The ninth day of the trial
Presiding Judge: – Please call witness Władysław Szenajch.
Witness Władysław Szenajch, 67 years old, residing in Warsaw, professor at the University of Warsaw, no relationship to the parties, testifying as an unsworn witness with the assent of the parties.
Presiding Judge: – I would like you to present to the Tribunal everything you know on this matter.
Witness: – What I want to say may seem trivial when compared to the enormousness of the crimes committed here by the Germans. As a doctor, placed by my colleagues at the head of the medical world, I would like to say just one thing: for me personally, and maybe for other people, too, one of the greatest evils that the Germans wanted to instill in us was a change in our eternal medical ethics, based on our Christianity, which we, the doctors of the entire world, and especially Polish doctors, have always regarded as the principal rule. The rule says that for us, a sick person is only a sick person. We didn’t ask for his nationality, his denomination, who had given birth to him. Just like Christ didn’t heal only the sons of Israel, but also the daughter of a Greek woman and the son of a Roman centurion, within universal medicine, we believed that if someone was ill, even if he was our enemy, we forgot about it and believed that we should give him due help. That was our constant, eternal credo.
The Germans came and wanted to break this essential position of doctors. They ordered us to look at who had given birth to the sick person, what was his race.
Right from the beginning, they established special wards in hospitals, special rooms for the Volks- and Reichsdeutsch e. Apparently they didn’t trust us, imagining that we might poison the sick. For example, in the hospital in which I was the director, it was necessary to keep two rooms which stayed empty because there were no sick children, and the nurse had nothing to do, but it was necessary to do so because the rooms were for the Volksdeutsche. Then, one or two children arrived.
That was the beginning. Then, the Germans were taken away and, when some German doctors arrived, we were forbidden to treat Germans. That rule, however, didn’t agree with the Germans themselves, as they summoned us and we kept on [treating them]. I, in particular, can say that I kept on treating my former Volksdeutsche patients because they summoned me and I had to go to them.
Even the prosecutor [governor] didn’t follow that rule because he must have thought it was really idiotic, and he himself had his children treated by Poles. I was at the governor’s house myself when his child was gravely ill, and we rescued the child together.
As for the Jews, the doctors’ ghetto and the ghetto for the sick were created even earlier than the ghetto for all. One cloudy day, when it was raining and hailing, if I recall correctly, an order was given to transport all of the sick from the general hospitals to the Jewish hospital. Sick children had to be immediately placed in that hospital under such circumstances. Not all of them were, as we didn’t follow that order. I especially, as a doctor who treats children, called the mothers to take their gravely ill children away. I kept sick girls in the hospital until they recovered, as it would be difficult to recognize them as Jewish even if there was a search.
That is how they attempted to twist our ethics, which I consider to be a felonious idea.
As for feeding the sick, no witnesses are necessary because there is a book, published by the German authorities, in which it is said explicitly and in which there is a number of calories calculated for the sick Germans and a number of calories calculated for a similar sick person, let’s say, a tubercular, who is not German.
I would therefore like to stress that this aim – the desire to twist our medical ethics – was, in my opinion as a medicinal ethicist, one of the greatest German crimes. I have nothing more to say.
Presiding Judge: – Are there any questions to the witness? There are no questions, thank you. Please call witness Dr. Łącki.