Johann Paul Kremer (26 December 1883 – 8 January 1965) was a professor of anatomy and human genetics at Münster University who joined the Wehrmacht on May 20, 1941. He served in the SS in the Auschwitz concentration camp as a physician from 30 August 1942 to 18 November 1942.
Dr. Johann Paul Kremer was sent to Auschwitz as a replacement physician in the late summer of 1942. Despite secrecy requirements, Kremer kept a diary in which he describes the “special actions” he observed at Auschwitz. After the war in Europe was over, Dr. Kremer was arrested. Following a trial, he was found guilty of war crimes and was sentenced to death (although the sentence was commuted to life imprisonment).Kremer received notoriety for his diary, which recounted mundane day to day activities interspersed with entries of his witnessing murder and depravity through gassings and special actions.
All SS doctors were required to be present at what were called “special actions,” which was when the mass gassings took place. The most common victims were children, the elderly, mothers with young children and any others considered unfit to work.
Below are some excerpts
6 September 1942
Today an excellent Sunday dinner: tomato soup, one half a chicken with potatoes and red cabbage (20 grams of fat), dessert and magnificent vanilla ice-cream.
After dinner we welcomed the new garrison doctor, Obersturmfuhrer Wirths from Waldbrol, Sturmbannfuhrer Fietsch in Prague had been his regimental surgeon.
It is a week since I came to camp and still have not been able to get rid of the fleas in my room in spite of using all kinds of insecticides, such as Flit (Cuprex) etc
I got a refreshing impression after visiting the commandant’s aide-de-camp for the first time. Above his room I saw a big inscription on paper, “Cyclists dismount.”We have also verses worthy of notice hanging in the office of our SS hospital:
“If you make a thousand lucky hits, People see them, they nod and pass. But even the smallest yelping dog will never forgot, should you miss but once.”In the evening at 8’oclock attended another special actions outdoors.”
On that day 981Jews arrived at Auschwitz from the transit camp at Drancy, France, of which 927 were gassed immediately.
September 9, 1942
This morning I received most welcome news from my solicitor Professor Dr. Hallermann in Munster, that I was divorced from my wife from the 1st of this month. Later was present as physician at the flogging of 8 camp inmates and at one execution by shooting with a small-calibre gun. Got soap flakes and 2 cakes of soap. At noon a civilian jumped out of the blue at my bicycle, just like an assassin, ran alongside and begged me to tell him whether I was State Councillor Heuner from Breslau to whom I bore a remarkable resemblance. He had fought in World War I side by side with that gentleman. How many doubles have I, then, running about in this world?xvi In the evening present at a special action.
17 October 1942
Was present at a punishment and 11 executions. Have taken fresh liver, spleen and pancreas material after an injection of pilocarpinDrove to Mikolow with Wirths, who had told me earlier that I would have to stay on longer.
18 October 1942
In wet and cold weather was on this Sunday morning present at the 11th special action (from Holland). Terrible scenes when 3 women begged to have their bare lives spared.
8 November 1942
Took part this night in 2 special actions in rainy and murky weather (12th and 13th). In the morning I welcomed Hauptscharfuhrer Kitt, a pupil of mine from Essen to the hospital
Another special action in the afternoon, the 14th in which I had participated so far. In the evening a cosy gathering to which I was invited by Wirths, now present in camp. We had Bulgarian red wine, plum brandy from Croatia.