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November 21, 2010

Thomas J. Dodd at the Nuremberg IMT

Today is the 65th anniversary of the day that testimony started in the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal.  During the proceedings, Thomas J. Dodd held up a shrunken head in the courtroom; this is a day that will long be remembered.

 It was on December 13, 1945 that Thomas Dodd introduced USA Exhibit #254: the shrunken head, which Ilse Koch, the wife of Commandant Karl Otto Koch of Buchenwald, had allegedly used as a paperweight.

Thomas J. Dodd and the shrunken head

The making of shrunken heads was an atrocity that came under War Crimes, one the four new categories of crimes that were made up by the Allies specifically for the defeated Germans.  The other three categories were Crimes against Peace, Crimes against Humanity and the designation of the National Socialists (Nazi) political party, as well as the SS, as criminal organizations.

Strangely, the Nazis only made two shrunken heads and they were found at the Buchenwald concentration camp when it was liberated by American soldiers.  After shrinking the heads of two Polish prisoners at Buchenwald, the Nazis gave up this fascinating hobby. Did some German doctors go to South America to learn the art of shrinking heads?  Probably.  I wouldn’t put anything past those evil Nazis.

Thomas J. Dodd was also the prosecutor who introduced USA Exhibit #253: pieces of human tattooed skin from concentration camp prisoners which had been preserved by tanning.

Later, Thomas J. Dodd became a U.S. Senator from Connecticut and the father of Senator Christopher Dodd.

Back when Sen. Christopher Dodd decided to run for President, he wrote a book in which he quoted extensively from the letters that his father had written to his mother while the Nuremberg IMT was in progress.  I read the book, Letters from Nuremberg shortly after it was published.

I was struck by the fact that Thomas J. Dodd seemed to believe that the Allies were being very fair to the Germans and had given them a fair trial.  The only criticism he had was that 75% of the lawyers, involved in the trial of the German war criminals were Jewish.  He didn’t seem to understand that these jobs were given to Jews because they could speak German, or at least Yiddish.

Update Nov. 24, 2010:

A reader asked in a comment if there was a forensic report on the shrunken head.  No, there were no forensic reports on anything because this was not necessary.  The Allies made the rules for the IMT and they included this rule:



Article 21. The Tribunal shall not require proof of facts of common knowledge but shall take judicial notice thereof.

The making of shrunken heads by the Germans was “common knowledge” that did not require proof, so the Allies were not required to furnish proof that the Germans had made the shrunken head that Thomas J. Dodd held up in the courtroom.

The Allies had made up new laws for the IMT and new rules for the proceedings.

The German “war criminals” were being tried on a charge of participating in a “common plan” to commit war crimes, so it didn’t matter whether any of the accused had actually made this shrunken head. Every German on trial was automatically guilty of making shrunken heads.

The same rule applied to the soap, allegedly made from human fat, which was introduced into evidence at the Nuremberg IMT by the Soviet prosecutors.  There was no forensic report done on the soap because it was common knowledge that the Germans had made soap out of the Jews.

Soap entered into evidence at the Nuremberg IMT


  1. […] During the film, there were many atrocities shown, which were not actually mentioned during this trial, which was a film about the trial of the Nazi Judges, not the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal. The movie showed the gas chamber at Dachau, as well as the shrunken heads found at Buchenwald, and other alleged Nazi crimes.  I wrote about the showing of the shrunken head in this previous blog post: […]

    Pingback by Judgment at Nuremberg — the 1961 movie about German judges on trial | Scrapbookpages Blog — February 21, 2015 @ 7:36 am

  2. The Nazis were also known to have cooked the dead Jews in huge vats of boiling water, removed the meat from the bones, added salt and preservatives, canned it and labeled it as chicken. Known as: “Konserven Hühnerfleisch.” When Germany was obviously losing the war and being bombed relentlessly by the allies, the Nazi’s distributed the cans of “chicken-meat” to the starving people all across the country. There was no much of it, as they killed millions of people. In the beginning they used it primarily as dog food for all the canines helping the soldiers in the battlefields. However, as thing became more and more grim, the average German peasant was starving and this canned human-flesh kept many families alive. The production was all “hush, hush” and few actually knew what the canned meat really contained. It tasted just like chicken many exclaimed and many SS officers and soldiers also consumed it near the end of the war. I doubt most really knew what they were eating. It is just another gross and inhuman Nazi endeavor, like making lampshades from human skin for high ranking Nazi officials in their offices, shrinking heads or performing horrid medical experiments on inmates in concentration camps.

    Comment by Boris Merman — February 1, 2015 @ 2:42 pm

  3. American New Gentry.
    There is new gentry in America, or you could call it “the elite”. The “elite” is confusing word; it could relate to anything, not necessarily to people of political power. There could be elite of music, entertainment or sports worlds, etc. I would prefer the word “gentry as best describing a certain category of people who are able to pass the inheritance of their power. We have new kings, queens, dukes, archdukes, barons, marquises, counts and countesses.
    (I am not going to discuss the here the presidencies of John Adams and John Quincy Adams; this is not my historical expertise.)
    Thomas Dodd is one of the great examples how to start a new dynasty.
    He just posed himself in the “Alas, Poor Yorick” appearance for the camera of Soviet jewish political photographer Yevgeniy Khaldey and was awarded with the senatorship for that. The High Schools are named after him. Let us see, how corrupt he was:
    “In 1967 Dodd became the first Senator censured by the US Senate since Joseph McCarthy in 1954,[21] and was one of only six people censured by the Senate in the 20th century. The censure was a condemnation and finding that he had converted campaign funds to his personal accounts and spent the money.[22][23] Beyond the Senate Ethics Committee’s formal disciplinary action, other sources (such as investigative journalist Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson’s Congress in Crisis) suggest[24] Dodd’s corruption was far broader in scope, and there were accusations of alcoholism.[24][25] In response to these accusations, Dodd filed a lawsuit against Pearson claiming that Pearson had illegally interfered with his private property. Although the district court granted a partial judgment to Dodd, the appellate court ruled in favor of Pearson on the grounds that Dodd’s property had not been physically abused.[26] In 1970, the Democrats endorsed for his seat Joseph Duffey, who won the nomination in the primary. Dodd then entered the race as an independent, taking just under a quarter of the vote, in a three-way race which he and Duffey lost to Lowell Weicker.”

    But, his baron’s title was passed to his son congressman Christopher Dodd, who even had uppity to run for a president. Slow down, you freak! Your clan is not in that league yet!

    Her Excellency Countess Nancy Pelosi: was born Nancy Patricia D’Alesandro in Baltimore, Maryland, the youngest of six children of Anunciata M. (“Nancy”) and Thomas D’Alesandro, Jr., who was a Democratic party U.S. Congressman from Maryland and a Mayor of Baltimore.[5] Pelosi’s brother, Thomas D’Alesandro III, also a Democrat, was mayor of Baltimore from 1967 to 1971.

    His Excellency Grand-Duke of Great Tennessee Al Gore was born in Washington, D.C., the second of two children of Albert Gore, Sr., a U.S. Representative who later served as a U.S. Senator from Tennessee.

    Well, there were/are multiple Kennedy family members, including the scion : the great Governator.

    Clintons are a special case which should be under separate investigation.

    And of course there are the Bushes: presidents, vice-presidents, governors of different States, CIA directors, etc. They are our kings.

    Mother-Queen Barbara Bush was dissing this week self-declared Great-Duchess of Alaska Sara Palin.

    Hey Barb, are you calling Her Excellency Sara a parvenu? Have you watched Dancing With The Stars show recently? Have you seen how wonderful Bristol Palin can dance? She can dance even better than you son could conduct the illegal wars. I know, you will live long enough to see Princess Bristol elected a president in 2028. Then, she is gonna get ya!

    Seriously: Isn’t United States of America a Constitutional Republic? Why do we allow these people to govern us? Why do we have a self-declared “gentry”, which is destroying our econmy, conduct illegal wars, bringing the police state in our neighborhoods, TSA nightmare, you name it! Well, they bring us reality shows from royal court of England, as far as who is getting married and who has overnight swing. I why would I care? Do I care about Queen of England and her ilk, or Grand-Dukes of Tennessee, or any other self-declared noblemen? Not at all!

    I am a citizen of Constitutional Republic. That makes me superior over all “gentry”.

    Comment by Gasan — November 23, 2010 @ 8:28 pm

  4. Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? (Hamlet, V.i),

    Look at the face of Thomas Dodd. He would look greater than Edmund Kean on the stage of Drury Lane theatre. Do you want me to believe he did not know what he was holding in his hand? Oh, c’mon!
    Did anybody made a scientific or forensic analysis of that thing? For at least, was it established how old is was? I believe those shrunken heads were brought from Amazon River area and were kept in anthropology museum of University of Jena, Germany, just 20 km from Buchenwald. I have a high suspicion that they were brought to Germany by Alexander von Humboldt (University of Berlin is named after him). He was an “explorer” and “scientist”, but ended up being a diplomat and ambassador. He has traveled to South America and spent some time in Venezuela, probably near the border of Brazil. In some of his biographies, I have read that Brazil had issued the order for his arrest, should he ever come to that country. Why would Brazil want to arrest an “explorer” and “scientist” of early 19th century? Maybe because he was smuggling the artifacts such as the one Thomas Dodd is holding in his hand?
    If this is true, this shrunken heads must be at least 140 years old at the time when great actor Thomas Dodd was posing himself in front of the black propaganda cameras.

    Comment by Gasan — November 23, 2010 @ 6:55 pm

    • Nonsense. That is clearly the shrunken head of someone of European descent. It did not come from the Amazon.

      The lampshade in the Ilse Koch trial was tested and proven to be that of human skin. Holocaust deniers believe what they want no matter what facts are presented. It’s funny how Communist atrocites are taken at face value. Holocaust denier clearly have an agenda.

      Comment by J — July 10, 2012 @ 9:57 am

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