Anton Pacholegg is another witness who gave testimony at Dachau shortly after liberation. His testimony is particularly interesting as not only does it give very weak and unconvincing details regarding human skin leather, hypothermia experiments and air pressure experiments, but he gives a radically different description over the fall of Rascher. This he attributes as resulting from “negligience” and poor science results presented to the Luftwaffe, and his wife being arrested for embezzlement. There is no doubt that Pacholegg was very close and trusted by Rascher, according to Wolfram Sievers before the Nuremberg Tribunal he accompanied Rascher to Voralberg (the part of Austria adjacent to Switzerland) and there escaped. This escape is confirmed by Sievers official diary the was entered into evidence. According to the testimony here, Pacholegg voluntarily returned to Dachau and spent the rest of the war in the “dungeon” because he felt sorry for Rascher. A rather extraordinary act if true. The original capture of Pacholegg bears curious similarities to the Venlo Incident, all in all we are left with the impression that Pacholegg was probably involved with some kind of resistance or espionage, which he is careful to obscure as he proceeds with his shocked witness of medical atrocities act.
It does seem curious that with the whole panoply of liberated prisoners of Dachau available that the American Army seem to pick out characters that carry such little conviction to be their star witnesses. (more…)