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Title: Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal: Nuremberg 14 November 1945-1 October 1946 (Vol. 6)

Date of first publication: 1947

Author: various

Date first posted: July 15, 2017

Date last updated: July 15, 2017

Faded Page eBook #20170709

This ebook was produced by: Larry Harrison, Cindy Beyer & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at http://www.pgdpcanada.net











14 NOVEMBER 1945-1 OCTOBER 1946



This volume is published in accordance with the

direction of the International Military Tribunal by

the Secretariat of the Tribunal, under the jurisdiction

of the Allied Control Authority for Germany.















22 January 1946 — 4 February 1946


Fortieth Day, Tuesday, 22 January 1946,
Morning Session1
Afternoon Session26
Forty-first Day, Wednesday, 23 January 1946,
Morning Session53
Afternoon Session84
Forty-second Day, Thursday, 24 January 1946,
Morning Session111
Afternoon Session134
Forty-third Day, Friday, 25 January 1946,
Morning Session158
Afternoon Session177
Forty-fourth Day, Monday, 28 January 1946,
Morning Session203
Afternoon Session236
Forty-fifth Day, Tuesday, 29 January 1946,
Morning Session268
Afternoon Session295
Forty-sixth Day, Wednesday, 30 January 1946,
Morning Session329
Afternoon Session344
Forty-seventh Day, Thursday, 31 January 1946,
Morning Session369
Afternoon Session393
Forty-eighth Day, Friday, 1 February 1946,
Morning Session418
Afternoon Session447
Forty-ninth Day, Saturday, 2 February 1946,
Morning Session476
Fiftieth Day, Monday, 4 February 1946,
Morning Session505
Afternoon Session534

Tuesday, 22 January 1946

Morning Session

M. HENRY DELPECH (Assistant Prosecutor for the French Republic): Mr. President, Your Honors, I had the honor yesterday of beginning to explain before the Tribunal the methods of economic spoliation of Belgium by the Germans in the course of their occupation of the country.

Coming back to what was said in the course of the general considerations on economic pillage and on the behavior of the Germans in Norway and Denmark and in Holland, I have been able to show that in all places the determination to economic domination of National Socialism had manifested itself. The methods were the same everywhere, at least in their broad outlines. Therefore in immediate response to the wish expressed yesterday by the Tribunal and to fulfill the mission entrusted to the French Prosecution by the Belgian Government to plead its case before your high jurisdiction, I shall confine myself to the main outlines of the development, and I shall take the liberty of referring to the details of the German seizure of Belgian production, to the text of the report submitted to the Tribunal, and to the numerous documents which are quoted in our document book.

I have had the honor of calling your attention to the existence of the black market in Belgium, its organization by the occupation troops, and their final decision to suppress this black market. One may, with respect to this, conclude, as has already been indicated in the course of the general observations, that in spite of their claims it was not in order to avoid inflation in Belgium that the German authorities led a campaign against the black market.

The day the Germans decided to suppress the black market, they loudly proclaimed their anxiety to spare the Belgian economy and the Belgian population the very serious consequences of the threatening inflation. In reality, the German authorities intervened against the black market in order to prevent its ever-growing extension from reaching the point where it would absorb all the available merchandise and completely strangle the official market. In a word, the survival of the official market with its lower prices was finally much more profitable for the army of occupation.

I now come, gentlemen, to Page 46 of my presentation, to the third Chapter—purchases which were regular in appearance; which had only one aim, namely the subjugation of Belgian productive power.

Carrying out their program of domination of the countries of Western Europe as it had been established since before 1939, the Germans, from the moment they entered Belgium in May 1940, took all the measures which seemed to them appropriate to assure the subjugation of Belgian production.

No sector of Belgian economy was to be spared. If the pillage seems more noticeable in the economic sphere, that is only because of the very marked industrial character of Belgian economy. Agriculture and transport were not to escape the German hold, and I propose to discuss first the levies in kind in industry.

Belgian industry was the first to be attacked. Thus, the military commander in Belgium, in agreement with the various offices of the Reich for raw materials and with the Office of the Four Year Plan and the Ministry of Economics, drew up a program the purpose of which was to convert almost the whole of Belgian production to the bellicose ends of the Reich. Already on the 13th of September 1940 he was able to make known to the higher authorities a series of plans for iron, coal, textiles, and copper. I submit Exhibit Number RF-162 (Document Number ECH-2) in support of this statement.

Also a report by Lieutenant Colonel, Dr. Hedler, entitled “Change in Economic Direction,” states that from 14 September 1940 the Army Ordnance Branch sent to its subordinate formations the following instructions, to be found in the document book under Exhibit Number RF-163 (Document Number ECH-84). I read the last paragraph of Page 41 of the German text:

“I attach the greatest importance to the proposition that the factories in the occupied western territories, Holland, Belgium, and France, be utilized as much as possible to ease the strain on the German armament production and to increase the war potential. Enterprises located in Denmark are also to be employed to an increasing extent for subcontracts. In doing so the operational directives of the regulation of the Reich Marshal as well as the regulations concerning the economy of raw materials in the occupied territories are to be strictly observed.”

All these arrangements quickly enabled the Germans to control and to direct Belgium’s whole production and distribution for the German war effort.

The decree of 27 May 1940, VOBEL Number 2, submitted as Document Number RF-164, established commodity control offices whose task was—and I quote from the third paragraph:

“. . . to issue, in compliance with Army Group directives, general regulations or individual orders to enterprises which are producing, dealing with, or using controlled commodities, in order to regulate production and ensure just distribution and rational utilization while keeping to the place of work, as far as possible.”

Article 4 of the same text indicated in detail the powers of these commodity control offices, and in particular they were given the right:

“To force enterprises to sell their products to specified purchasers; to forbid or require the utilization of certain raw materials; to subject to their approval every sale or purchase of commodities.”

To conceal more effectively their real objective, the Germans gave these commodity control offices independence and the status of a corporation. Thus, there were set up 11 commodity control offices which embraced the whole economy except coal, the direction of which was left under the Belgian Office of Coal. Exhibit Number RF-165 (Document Number ECH-3), gives proof of this.

The execution of the regulations was ensured by a series of texts promulgated by the Belgian authorities in Brussels. They issued in particular a decree dated 3 September 1940, by virtue of which Belgian organizations took over again the offices which the Germans gave up.

These offices were to experience various vicissitudes. Although originating from the Belgian Ministry of Economics, they were closely controlled by the German military command. In this way, the seizure of Belgian production was completed by the appointment of “Commissioners of Enterprises,” under the ordinance of 29 April 1941, submitted as Document Number RF-166. Article 2 of this text defines the powers of the commissioners:

“The duty of the Commissioner is to set or keep in motion the enterprise under his charge, to ensure the systematic fulfillment of orders, and to take all measures which increase the output.”

The decline of the commodity control offices began with an ordinance dated 6 August 1942, establishing the principle providing for the prohibition of manufacturing certain products or for ordering the use of certain raw materials. This ordinance is to be found in the document book under Document Number RF-167. Supervision of the commodity control offices was soon organized by the appointment to each of them of a German Commissioner, selected by the competent Reichsstelle.

From the last months of 1943 on, the “Rüstungsobmann” Office of the Armament and War Production Ministry (Speer), acquired the habit of passing its orders direct, without having recourse to the channel of the commodity control offices.

Even before this date measures had been taken to prevent any initiative that was not in accord with the German war aims. Further and even before the above ordinance of 6 August 1942, the ordinance of 30 March 1942 should be mentioned, which made the establishment or extension of commercial enterprises subject to previous authorization by the military commissioner.

In the report of the military administration in Belgium that has already been cited, the chief of the administrative staff, Reeder, specifies in Exhibit Number RF-169 (Document Number ECH-335) that for the period of January to March 1943 alone, out of 2,000 iron works, 400 were closed down for working irrationally or being useless to the war aims. The closing of these factories seems to have been caused less by the concern for a rational production than by the cunning desire to obtain cheaply valuable tools and machines.

In this connection, it is appropriate to point to the establishment of a Machine Pool Office. The above quoted report of the military administration in Belgium, in the 11th section, Pages 56 and following, is particularly significant in this respect. Here is an extract from the German text, the last lines of the last paragraph of Page 56, in the French translation, the last lines . . .

THE PRESIDENT (Lord Justice Sir Geoffrey Lawrence): That passage you read about the Defendant Raeder, was that from Document 169 or 170?

M. DELPECH: Mr. President, I spoke yesterday of the chief of the administration section, Reeder. He was section chief in Brussels. He has no connection with the defendant here.

THE PRESIDENT: I see, very well.

M. DELPECH: Exhibit Number RF-171 (Document Number ECH-10), second paragraph of the French text. The paragraph concerns the Machine Pool transactions:

“Proof may be seen by a brief glance at the pool operations dealt with and actually carried out. Altogether 567 demands have been dealt with, to a total value of 4.6 million Reichsmark.”

Reeder then gave a number of figures. I shall pass over these and I come to the end of the first paragraph, Page 57 in the German text:

“The legal basis for the requisition of these machines was the Hague Convention of 1907, Articles 52 and 53. The formulation of the Hague Convention which provides for requisitions only for the benefit and the needs of the occupying power, applied to the circumstances of the year 1907, that is, to a time when war actions were confined within narrowly restricted areas and practically the military front alone was involved in war operations. In view of such space restrictions for war, it was evident that the provisions of the Hague Convention, stipulating that requisitions be made solely for the needs of the occupying power, were sufficient for the conduct of operations. Modern war, however, which by its expansion to total war is no longer bound by space but has developed into a general struggle of peoples and economies, requires that while the regulations of the Hague Convention should be maintained, there should be a sensible interpretation of its principles adapted to the demands of modern warfare.”

I pass to the end of this quotation:

“Whenever, in requisitioning, reference was made to the ordinance of the military commander of 6 August 1942, this was done in order to give the Belgian population the necessary interpretation of the meaning of the principle of the requisition regulations of the Hague Convention.”

Such an interpretation may leave jurists wondering, who have not been trained in the school of National Socialism. It cannot in any case justify the pillage of industry and the subjugation of Belgian production.

These few considerations show how subtle and varied were the methods employed by the Germans to attain their aims in the economic sphere. In the same way as the preceding statements on clearing operations and the utilization of occupation costs, they make it possible to specify the methods employed for exacting heavy levies from the Belgian economy.

Whereas in certain spheres, as in agriculture and transport, it has been possible to assess the extent of economic pillage with a certain exactitude, there are, however, numerous industrial sectors where assessments cannot yet be made. It is true that a considerable part of the industrial losses correspond to the clearing operations, particularly through requisition of stocks. It will therefore be necessary to confine ourselves to the directives of the policy practiced by the Germans.

We may examine briefly the way in which economic spoliation took place in three sectors: industry, agriculture, and transport.

First the industrial sector: The clearing statistics, in the first place, give particulars of the total burdens imposed upon the various industrial branches.

The report of the military administration in Belgium, to which I shall refer constantly, gives the following details, briefly summarized:

From the very beginning of the occupation the Germans demanded an inventory of supplies on which they were to impose considerable levies, notably textiles and non-ferrous metals.

I shall confine myself to some brief remarks on textiles and non-ferrous metals. The example of the textiles industry is particularly revealing: On the eve of the invasion, the Belgian textile industry, with its 165,000 workers, was the second largest industry in Belgium after the metal industry. Under the pretext of avoiding the exhaustion of the very important supplies then still available, an ordinance of 27 July 1940 prohibited the textile industry to work at more than 30 percent of its 1938 capacity. For the period from May to December 1940 alone requisitions were not less than 1,000 million Belgian francs. They particularly affected nearly half of the wool stock available in the country on May 10, 1940, and nearly one-third of the stock of raw cotton.

On the other hand, the forced closing down of factories constituted for the Germans an excellent excuse for taking away, on the pretext of hiring, unused equipment, unless it was requisitioned at a cheap price. The ordinance of 7 September 1942, which is to be found in the document book under Document Number RF-174, laid down the manner in which factories were to be closed in execution of the right accorded to the occupation authorities; and it also gave the right to dissolve certain business and industrial groups and to order their liquidation. Consolidation of enterprises was the pretext given. In the month of January 1944, 65 percent of the textile factories had been stopped.

I shall not go into the details of these operations and I shall pass on to Page 58. The report of the German military administration quoted above gives particularly significant figures as to production. Of a total output of the wool industry of 72,000 tons for the entire period May 1940 to the end of June 1944, representing a value of about 397 million Reichsmark, the distribution of the deliveries between the German and Belgian markets is the following: The German market, 64,700 tons, 314 million Reichsmark; the Belgian market, 7,700 tons, 83 million Reichsmark. The whole spoliation of the textile industry is contained in these figures.

Belgian consumption obviously had to suffer a great deal from the German policy of direction of the textile market. The same report of the military administration furnishes details, stating that in 1938 the needs in textile products amounted in Belgium to a monthly average of twelve kilos. The respective figures for the occupation years are the following: 1940 to 1941—2.1 kilos per head, 1941 to 1942—1.4, 1942 to 1943—1.4, 1943 to 1944—0.7. The diminution of Belgian consumption under the Germans is contained in these two figures; twelve kilos per head in 1938; 0.7 kilo at the end of the occupation.

On the other side, the Belgian Government gives the following details on the pillage of this produce. Compulsory deliveries to Germany during the occupation amounted to:

Cotton yarn, about 40 percent of the production; linen, 75 percent; rayon, 15 percent.

Finally, out of the textile stocks remaining in Belgium a great percentage was still taken away by the Germans through purchases on the Belgian markets, purchases of finished or manufactured products. The equivalent of these forced deliveries can generally be found in the clearing statistics, unless it is placed under misrepresented occupation costs.

I have finished with textiles. As to the non-ferrous metal industry, Belgium was in 1939 the largest producer in Europe of non-ferrous metals, of copper, lead, zinc, and tin. The statistics included in the report of the military command, which are to be found in Exhibit Number RF-173 (Document Number ECH-11), will furnish the evidence for the Tribunal.

On the 18th of February 1941, in connection with the Four Year Plan, the Reich Office for Metals and the Supreme Command of the Army worked out a “metal” plan which provided for Belgian consumption; the carrying out of German orders; exports to the Reich.

These various measures did not satisfy the occupying authorities so they ran a certain number of salvage campaigns which were called “special actions” (Sonderaktionen) in accordance with the method they applied in all the countries of Western Europe. I shall not go into the details of these actions which are described on Page 63 and following of the report; the salvage campaigns for bells, for printing lead, for lead and copper—from information given by the Belgian Government, Document Number RF-146, Page 65 of the report.

In other fields, but without admitting it, the Germans pursued a policy intended to eliminate or to restrict Belgian competition, so that in case of a German victory the economic branches concerned would have had to restrict themselves to the Belgian market, which would then have remained wide open to German business.

These attempts at immediate or future suppression of competition were clearly evident in the case of foundries, glass works, textile industries, construction works, car assembling, construction of material for narrow-gauge railroads, the leather industry, and especially shoe-manufacturing, for which reconstruction of destroyed factories was systematically prohibited.

But in addition, in the textile industry as well as in numerous sectors, especially in the iron-smelting industry, the weakening of the economy cannot be measured only by the scale of the compulsory deliveries but in relation to the policy practiced by the occupying power. Belgian industry, especially coal and iron, suffered considerable losses as a result of directives imposed to finance the war needs at a cheaper rate.

I shall pass over the question of prices of coal. The control of the coal industry was assured by the appointment of a plenipotentiary for coal and by centralization of all sales in the hands of a single organism, the “single seller,” under Belgian direction but with a German commissioner. I am referring to the Belgian coal office, one seller to a single purchaser, “Rheinisch Westfälisches Kohlensyndikat,” which ordered deliveries to be made to the Reich, to Alsace-Lorraine and Luxembourg.

According to the same German report, Page 67, in spite of the rise in the price of coal agreed to on 20 August 1940, 1 January 1941, and 1 January 1943, the coal industry showed considerable losses in the course of the occupation years. In February 1943, the coal office having agreed to an increase of the sales price, the price per ton for the Belgian coal was higher than on the German home market. The German commissioner for the mining industry forced the Belgian industry to pay the difference in rate when exporting to the Reich by means of premiums.

From the figures indicated in Exhibits Numbers RF-176 (Document Number ECH-35) and 178 (Document Numbers ECH-26 and 27), the Tribunal may gather information as to the financial losses caused by exploitation. The report of the military administration gives in its eleventh section details regarding the iron-smelting industry: It suffered as greatly as had the coal industry during the occupation. In the Thomas smelting works in particular, the losses resulted from the increase in the cost price and from price fluctuations in respect to certain elements pertaining to the manufacture.

In this one sector, according to the memorandum of the Belgian Government, the respective losses may be assessed at 3,000 million Belgian francs. Still, according to the same report, out of a total production of 1,400,000 tons, 1,300,000 tons of various products were exported to Germany not including the metal delivered to Belgian factories working exclusively for Germany.

According to information furnished by the Belgian Government, the Germans removed in bulk and transported to Germany material of very great value. The total industrial spoliation is estimated by the Belgian Government at a sum of 2,000 million Belgian francs, at the 1940 rate, of course.

These removals constitute a real material loss; and from the fragmentary indications given to the Tribunal, this sum of 2,000 million Belgian francs is the figure which I ask the Tribunal to note.

In view of the information available at present it is not easy to estimate the extent of the levies made on industry; it is even more difficult to evaluate it in the agricultural sphere, which I shall briefly present.

Apart from the admissible needs of the occupation troops, the German authorities made an effort to obtain a supplement to the food levies in Belgium for the purpose of increasing the food of the Reich and other territories occupied by its troops. After having employed direct methods of levying, the Germans used the services of unscrupulous agents whose job it was to purchase at any price on the illicit markets; and the black market in this field assumed such proportions that the occupying authorities were frequently alarmed and in 1943 had to suppress it.

Apart from the damage to livestock and to the woods and forests, which play an important part in Belgium, the damage resulting from abnormal cutting in the forests brought about an excess in deforestation reaching a figure of 2 million tons; the damage to capital caused by this premature cutting can be estimated at about 200 million Belgian francs.

The military operations proper caused damage to an extent of 100 million Belgian francs; and according to the memorandum of the Belgian Government, the total damage caused to forestry reaches a figure of 460 million Belgian francs. Taking into account the damage caused by abnormal cutting in the forests and by the establishment of airfields, the Belgian Government estimates at approximately 1,000 million Belgian francs the losses suffered by its agriculture during the occupation.

It must be noted, without going further into this subject, that these are net losses in capital, constituting a veritable exhaustion of substance and a consequent reduction and real consumption of the nation’s resources. With this I have concluded my presentation concerning agriculture, and I pass on to transport.

The conduct of war led the Germans to utilize to the utmost the railroad network and the canal and river system of Belgium. The result was that the railroads and river fleet are included in those branches of Belgian economy which suffered most from the occupation and the hostilities which took place on Belgian soil. German traffic was simultaneously a traffic of personnel as demanded by military operations and a traffic of merchandise, coal, minerals, pit-props, foodstuffs, not to speak of the considerable quantities of construction material required for the fortification of the coast of the North Sea.

Railroads: The report of the Belgian Government shows that the damages suffered by the railroads consisted of losses in capital as well as of losses in revenue. Losses in capital resulted first and principally from requisitions and removals, to which the Germans proceeded in a wholesale fashion from the moment of their entry into Belgium. Thus in particular they immediately drained the stock of locomotives under the pretext of recovering German locomotives surrendered to Belgium after the war of 1914-1918 as a means of reparation.

In addition to seizures of locomotives, the Belgian National Railroad Company was subjected to numerous requisitions of material, sometimes under the form of rental; these requisitions are estimated at 4,500 million francs at the 1940 value.

Against the losses in capital, losses in revenue (Page 77) resulted principally from the free transportation service required by the Wehrmacht, also from the price policy pursued by the occupying power. These levies and these exceptional costs could be borne by the organizations concerned only by making large drains on the treasury.

Regarding automobiles, I shall say hardly anything (Page 79). The losses amount to about 3,000 million Belgian francs, out of which individuals received as compensation for requisition approximately 1,000 million (at the 1938 value).

We come now to river transport: The carrying out of the plan for the economic spoliation of Belgium presented the occupying power with serious transportation problems, to which I have already called attention.

In this sphere the German military administration imposed upon Belgian river shipping very heavy burdens. According to the report of the Belgian Government, the losses suffered by the Belgian river fleet took three forms: Requisitions and removals by the Germans; partial or total damage through military operations; excessive deterioration of material. These three forms of damage amount to 500 million francs, of which only 100 million are represented in clearing. Damage to waterways (Page 81), rivers, streams, and canals, can be evaluated at between 1,500 million to 2,000 million francs, at the 1940 value, especially with respect to requisitions and removals of public or private harbor installations.

Fishing boats were requisitioned for marking the river Scheldt and then disappeared without leaving any trace. Others suffered damage through requisitions or hire for military maneuvers.

Before closing this chapter concerned with levies in kind, the question of removal of industrial material may be briefly mentioned (Page 82).

It has already been pointed out that the policy of production and reorganization as pursued by the military administration had as a result the closing of numerous enterprises, thus enabling the Germans to seize a great number of machines under the pretext that they were out of use.

There are no branches of industry which were not despoiled in this way. The metal industry seems now to be one of those that suffered most. Though we do not wish to try the patience of the Tribunal, it seems particularly pertinent to draw its attention briefly to the actual technique used in the organization of the levies, details which were decided upon even before the entry of German troops into the territories of Western Europe, organization putting into play military formations, organization emanating from the economy bureau of the General Staff of the Army and hence from the Defendant Keitel as Chief of the OKW.

The existence of these military detachments, veritable pillaging detachments, is proved by various German documents. Under the name of economic detachments, “Wirtschaftstrupps,” or special commandos, these pillaging crews carried out nefarious and illegal activities in all the countries of Western Europe.

The secret instructions for the “economic detachment J,” stationed at Antwerp, are found in the file under Document Number RF-183. They constitute a very important, irrefutable document on the German intention to pillage and an additional proof of the contempt of the National Socialist leaders for the rules of international law.

These instructions date from the last days of May 1940. I should like to read a few excerpts of these instructions to the Tribunal (Document Number RF-183, Page 1).

“The economic detachments are formed by the office for economic armament of the High Command of the Wehrmacht. They are placed at the disposal of the High Command of the Army for employment in the countries to be occupied.”

I shall skip to the bottom of Page 1 of the German document.

“It is their task to gain information quickly and completely in their districts of the scarce and rationed goods (raw materials, semi-finished products, mineral oil, et cetera) and machines of most vital importance for the purposes of national defense and to make a correct return of these stocks.

“In the case of machines, the requisition will be effected by means of a label, in the case of scarce and rationed goods, both by labelling and by guarding.

“Furthermore, the economic detachments have the duty of preparing and, upon order of the Army Group, of carrying out the removal of scarce and rationed goods, mineral oils, and the most important machines. These tasks are the exclusive responsibility of the economic detachments.

“The economic detachments are to commence their activities in newly occupied territories as early as the battle situation permits.”

Machines and raw materials having thus been found and identified, the new organizations went into action to dismantle and put to use these machines and raw materials in Germany.

The above quoted document RF-183 gives precise and very curious information on the formation and the strength of detachment “J” at Antwerp. The eight officers are all reserve officers, engineers, wholesale dealers, directors of mines, importers of raw materials, engineering consultants. Their names and their professions are mentioned in the document. These men are therefore all specialists in commerce and industry. The choice of these technicians cannot be attributed to mere chance.

According to the above instructions and more especially the instructions found under date of 10 May 1940, coming from General Hannecken (Exhibit Number RF-184), Document Number ECH-33, once the machines and the stocks have been identified, the offices set to work, the Roges on one hand, and the compensation bureaus on the other hand, to whose activities attention has already been called in connection with the pillage of Holland and of the Belgian non-ferrous metal industry.

Another document, which is likewise presented as Exhibit Number RF-184 (Document Number ECH-33), shows that the very composition of the economic detachments emanates from the High Command. Quoting from Page 6:

“The economic detachments already mentioned in Section I, which are composed of experts for the branches of industry found in the respective areas, shall gain information and secure stocks of raw materials and special machinery for the production of ammunition and war equipment which are at present important.”

THE PRESIDENT: Is that quotation set out in your dossier?

M. DELPECH: The quotation is on Page 84, bis.

THE PRESIDENT: Would this be a convenient time to break off?

[A recess was taken.]

M. DELPECH: Besides the economic detachments to which I have just drawn the attention of the Tribunal, detailed to remove and redistribute machinery either to factories working in the country on behalf of the occupying power or to factories in Germany, these operations were directed by the Machine Pool Office.

Such offices were set up in all the occupied territories of Western Europe during the last months of 1942, upon the order of the Minister for Armaments and War Production, for example, the Defendant Speer, and the Office of the Four Year Plan, for example, the Defendant Göring.

The Machine Pool Office for Belgium and Northern France was set up upon the decision of the Chief of the Military Economic Section in Brussels under date of 18 February 1943. Its activity has already been outlined to the Tribunal in connection with the spoliation of non-ferrous metal industries. Its activity did not stop there; it is found in all branches of industry. The Exhibit Number RF-185 (Document ECH-29) can give us figures on its activity. This activity continued to the very last days of the occupation. Requisitions of machinery and instruments were not limited to industry; Documents Numbers ECH-16 and ECH-15 (Exhibits Numbers RF-193 and 194) show the extent of the requisitioning of scientific instruments.

I have finished with the levies on industrial material.

I shall present briefly in the fourth chapter the question of services, first of all:

1. The billeting of troops. By an ordinance dated 17 December 1940, Page 88, the Germans imposed the costs of billeting their troops upon Belgium. Having done this, the occupation authorities justified themselves by a rather liberal interpretation of Article 52 of the Hague Convention, according to the provisions of which the occupying power may require levies in kind and in services.

The Wetter report (Document Number RF-186) wrongly contends that the Convention does not specify by whom the settlement should be made; Article 49 gives the right to make the occupied country defray the expenses.

Therefore Belgium had to meet expenses to the amount of 5,900 million francs for billeting costs, equipment, and furniture. The payments of the Belgian treasury for billeting is estimated in the report of the Belgian Military Administration at 5,423 million francs.

It is evident that under the pretext of billeting costs, other expenses were entered to the detriment of the Belgian economy, as in other occupied countries—the purchases of furniture which was to be sent to Germany.

2. Transport and Communications.

To assure transport and communications, the Belgian treasury had to advance a total of 8,000 million francs. As already pointed out to the Tribunal, the seizure by the occupation authorities covered even the river fleet to the extent that the transport plan restricted the use of rail to the operation troops.

According to Article 53 of the Hague Convention, the occupying army has the right to seize means of transport and communications provided that it returns them and pays indemnity. That army, however, does not possess the right to make the occupied country pay the costs of transport put at the army’s disposal. That is, however, what Germany did in Belgium.

3. Labor.

The deportation of labor to Germany and forced labor in Belgium have already been explained to the Tribunal. It therefore seems unnecessary to stress this point (Page 91). At the most, we should recall certain consequences unfavorable to the Belgian economy. The measures concerning the deportation of labor caused an economic disorganization and weakening without precedent.

Secondly, the departure of workers and particularly of skilled workers inadequately replaced by unskilled labor—women, adolescents and pensioners—brought about a decrease in production at the same time as an increase in the cost price, which contributed to complicating the problem of the financial equilibrium of industrial enterprises.

Third observation: The requisition of labor was the cause of political and social discontent owing to the dispersion of families and the inequalities which appeared in the requisition of workers.

Fourth and last observation: The workers were required for spheres of work which were not necessarily their own, which resulted in a loss of their professional skill. Personnel were divided and unclassed. The closing of artisan workshops brought about changes more or less felt in certain branches of production. The losses thus suffered cannot be measured in terms of money, but they are none the less important to be submitted to your jurisdiction.

I have finished with this subject and will turn to a last chapter, Chapter V, the acquisition of Belgian investments in foreign industrial enterprises.

Since 1940 according to their general policy in all occupied countries of Western Europe, the Germans concerned themselves with acquiring shares in Belgian financial enterprises abroad. The official German point of view emerges clearly from a letter dated 29 July 1941, from the Minister of Finance to the Military Commander in Belgium. I have submitted it under Number 187, in the document book (Document Number RF-187).

This conception of the right to acquire shares is certainly very far from the idea as laid down by the Hague Convention in respect to the right of requisition. It clearly shows the German leaders’ determination for enrichment at the expense of Belgium.

Thus, the Germans, since May 1940, sought to obtain influence in Belgian holding companies. Not being able to violate directly international laws, particularly Article 46 of the Hague Convention, they strove to influence the members of the executive boards through persuasion rather than by force.

In the course of a conference held on 3 May 1940 at the Reich Ministry of Economics, dealing with Belgian and Dutch capital which it would still be possible to acquire, it was decided that the Military Commander in Belgium should take all necessary measures to prevent, on the one hand, the destruction, transfer, sale, and illegal holding of all bonds and stocks of these countries and, on the other hand, to induce Belgian capitalists to hand over their foreign securities to the Germans. The minutes of this conference are found in the document book under Number RF-187 above.

To prevent the flight of any capital, an ordinance of 17 June 1940 was promulgated, subjecting to authorization the sending abroad of any securities and any acquisitions or disposal of foreign securities.

From 2 August 1940 the German leaders and the Defendant Göring himself took a definite stand on this point. In the course of the general remarks on economic plundering secret directives issued in this respect by the Defendant Göring were read to you. It is the document submitted under Number RF-105 (Page 97).

In spite of the German assurances and in spite of the wish of the occupying power to preserve the appearance of regularity, the German desire to absorb certain shares met with serious resistance. The occupation authorities several times had to resort to compulsion to conclude sales, in spite of the rights which they had reserved for themselves in the above cited decree of 27 August 1940. This was particularly the case with regard to the shares held by the Belgian Metal Trust in the electrical enterprises of Eastern Silesia and, still more clearly, the case regarding the shares of the Austrian Metal Company, which at that time were wanted by the Hermann Göring Works.

The Belgian ill-will increased as the German determination to pillage became more evident. In this report of 1 December 1942, Exhibit Number RF-191 (Document Number ECR-132), the German Commissioner with the National Bank very clearly denounces this resistance on the part of the Belgian market. Almost all acquisitions which could be realized by the Germans were settled by means of clearing (Page 98).

The balance of clearing capital credited to Belgium, to the amount of 1,000 million Belgian francs on 31 August 1944, represents a forced loan imposed upon Belgium without any legal or logical relation to occupation costs, unless it is the Germans’ will to hegemony.

Such a practice, contrary to the principles of international law and to the rules of criminal law of civilized nations, falls under Article 6(b) of the Charter of the International Military Tribunal and constitutes an act of pillage of public or private property such as is envisaged in the above-mentioned text.

Closely allied to the acquisition of shares and always within the framework of legality, the levies made by the German authorities on foreign, enemy, and Jewish property, should be pointed out to the Tribunal.

As to foreign property seized by the Germans, it must be mentioned that this measure was applied to French capital in Belgium in spite of numerous protests by the French Government. As to Jewish property, for the years 1943 and 1944, the figures are presented in Document Number ECH-35 (Exhibit Number RF-192).

With this I conclude the presentation of the economic spoliation of Belgium (Page 100).

The damage caused to Belgian economy in its principal branches have just been submitted to the Tribunal. The statistical data have been taken either from German reports or from official reports of the Belgian Government. The available estimates and figures are not yet sufficiently exact to fix the costs of war, the occupation and economic spoliation of Belgium; some losses and damages cannot be expressed in money. Among them, first of all, we must mention the privations resulting from the German commandeering of a large part of food supplies and from the particular situation of billeting and clothing. This purely material aspect of the question should not cause us to overlook the consequences of the occupation upon the public health (Page 103). For lack of statistical data, it is difficult to show precisely the final state of public health resulting from the particular circumstances.

One fact, however, must be remembered: The considerable increase in the number of persons who were eligible for special invalid diets. This number rose from 2,000 a month in 1941 to more than 25,000 a month in 1944. It had, therefore, increased more than tenfold, in spite of the rationing measures which became more and more severe.

This increase in nutritional aid given to sick persons deserves the attention of the Tribunal, less for itself and for its statistical interest, than because it is the indication of the increase of disease in Belgium. This increase is itself the result of the undernourishment of the population during the four years of occupation.

This deplorable state of affairs, however, had not escaped the attention of the occupation authorities, as appears from the letter of the Military Commander in Belgium already quoted which is found in the document book under Document Number RF-187:

“Regarding the food situation in Belgium, neither the minimum for existence for the civilian population is secured nor the minimum amount necessary for feeding heavy laborers who are employed solely in the interest of the German war economy.”

I shall not dwell on this. This undernourishment of the Belgian population has been the inevitable and the most serious result of the huge levies made by the occupation authorities who willfully disregarded the elementary requirements of an occupied country in order to pursue only the war aims of the Reich.

The lowering of the average standard of health and the rise in the death rate in Belgium from 1940 to 1945 may therefore be rightly considered the direct result of the spoliations committed by the Germans in Belgium in transgression of international law.

I have concluded the presentation on Belgium.

I would like to make a few brief remarks on the economic pillaging of Luxembourg (Page 106).

Supplementing the presentation on Belgium it is fitting to present to the Tribunal some details on the conduct of the Germans in Luxembourg. The Government of the Grand Duchy has submitted a general summary of its accusations which has been lodged with the Tribunal as Document Number UK-77 and in which an extract covering the crimes against property, the economic section, is in the document book under the Number RF-194.

The Germans, shortly after their entry into the Grand Duchy, proceeded to annex it in fact. This attitude, similar enough to that adopted towards the inhabitants of the Departments of Moselle, Bas-Rhin, and Haut-Rhin, calls for some remarks.

As was their wont, one of the first measures they put into effect was the exchange of the Luxembourg money at the rate of 10 Luxembourg francs to 1 mark. This was the subject of the ordinance of 26 August 1940, to be found in the document book under Number 195 (Document Number RF-195). This rate of exchange did not correspond to the respective purchasing power of the two currencies. It constituted a considerable levy on the wealth of the inhabitants and especially assured the Germans of a complete seizure of the monies. It thus procured for them the means for seizing a considerable part of the reserves of raw materials and manufactured goods of the country. The purchases were paid for in depreciated marks on the basis of controlled prices imposed by the Germans.

Finally, by the Ordinance of 29 January 1941, the Reichsmark was introduced as the only legal tender (ordinance submitted as Document Number RF-196). The Luxembourg francs and the Reichskreditkasse notes were taken out of circulation, as well as Belgian francs, up to then considered as currency of the Franco-Luxembourg monetary union. All of these became foreign currency, as from 5 February 1941.

I should like to draw the attention of the Tribunal to the fact that of all the countries occupied by Germany, Luxembourg is, like Alsace and Lorraine, one of the few countries which was totally deprived of its national currency.

Moreover, to procure for the Reich the financial means necessary for the prosecution of the war, the ordinance of 27 August 1940 (Document Number RF-197) prescribed compulsory delivery of gold and foreign currency. Moreover, the same ordinance stipulated that foreign shares and bonds had to be offered for sale to the Reichsbank at rates and under conditions fixed by the occupying power.

As has already been pointed out, the Germans seized industrial stocks. In this respect, the report dated 21 May 1940, on the economic situation in Holland, Belgium, and Luxembourg, contains information on the stocks found in the country:

1,600 million tons of iron ore; 125,000 tons of manganese; 10,000 tons of crude iron; 10,000 tons of ferro-manganese; 36,000 tons of plated products and finished products, and I could continue this enumeration. The German seizure spread from stocks to the management of the industrial production.

According to the memorandum presented by the Reparations Commission of the Luxembourg Government, Document Number RF-198, the total economic damages amount to 5,800 million Luxembourg francs at the 1933 value. This figure can be analyzed as follows:

Industry and commerce, 1,900 million; Railroads, 200 million; Roads and Highways, 100 million; Agriculture, 1,600 million; Damage to property in general, 1,900 million.

From the same official source, the total loss in capital represents about 33 percent of the national wealth of Luxembourg, before the war estimated at approximately 5,000 million Luxembourg francs.

The effect on the financial and monetary situation of the country was a loss exceeding 6,000 million Luxembourg francs. In these damages the increase in circulation of money and the amount of forced investments in Germany—more than 4,800 million Luxembourg francs—as well as an additional charge imposed upon the taxpayers of the Grand Duchy following the introduction of the German fiscal system figure particularly. To these burdens must be added the skimming of profits, fines, and the allegedly voluntary gifts of every kind imposed upon Luxembourg.

Similar to what was done in other countries, the Ordinance of 21 February 1941 (Document Number RF-199, Exhibit Number RF-199 of the document book concerning Luxembourg) provided that no German managers could be appointed in large enterprises, particularly in smelting works, who—and this is the text of the ordinance—“would not be prepared to favor the interests of Germanism in every circumstance.”

The task of these commissioners was to insure for the Reich, within the scope of the Four Year Plan, the direction and control of exploitation in the exclusive interest of the German war effort. Thus, on 2 August 1940, the “Reichskommissar” for the administration of enemy property appointed to the largest metal company in Luxembourg, the United Steel Works of Burbach-Eich-Dudelange (Arbed), three German commissioners who ensured the complete control of the company. Neither did other large companies escape this domination as can be seen from the documents submitted to the Tribunal under Number 200 (Document Number RF-200).

The spoliation of Luxembourg and foreign interests in the insurance field, one of the most important branches of Luxembourg’s activities, was complete. With the exception of three Swiss companies and a German company, all transactions were prohibited to the Luxembourg companies, whose assets were transferred to German insurance companies—in an official way as regards the national companies, and secretly as regards the foreign companies.

The insurance companies of Luxembourg were deprived of the premiums from fire insurance by the introduction of compulsory fire insurance, for which the German companies were given the monopoly.

Introducing in Luxembourg their racial policy, the National Socialists seized and confiscated all Jewish property in the Grand Duchy to the profit of the “Verwaltung für die Judenvermögen” (Administration of Jewish Property).

Also in regard to the Umsiedlungspolitik (resettlement policy), 1,500 families (that is 7,000 Luxembourg persons) were deported. The Germans took possession of their property. A German trust company, set up in the German Office for Colonization and Germanization, was charged with the administration of this property, and, in fact, set about to liquidate it. Important assets were thus confiscated and transferred to the Reich.

Germans from the Tyrol were, as has already been pointed out, installed in the buildings, and industrial, commercial, and artisan enterprises of the deportees.

That is to say, Your Honors, that the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg was the victim of economic pillage as systematically organized as that in Belgium.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Delpech, the Tribunal is grateful to you for the way in which you have performed the task which they asked you to perform last night, a task which is not altogether easy, of shortening the address which you had intended to make. As far as they are able to judge, no essential parts of your address have been omitted. It is of great importance that the Trial should be conducted, as the Charter indicates, in an expeditious way, and it was for this reason that the Tribunal asked you, if you could, to shorten your address.

M. DELPECH: I thank you, Your Honor, for your kindness.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, M. Gerthoffer.

M. CHARLES GERTHOFFER (Assistant Prosecutor for the French Republic): Mr. President, Your Honors, I come to the sixth section of this presentation, which deals with the economic pillage of France.

When the Germans invaded France, they found there considerable wealth. They set about with ingenuity to seize it and also to subjugate the national production.

When they failed to attain their ends by mere requisitions, they resorted to devious methods, using simultaneously ruse and violence, striving to cloak their criminal actions with legality.

To accomplish this, they misused the conventions of the armistice. These, in fact, did not contain any economic clauses and did not include any secret provisions but consisted only of regulations, which were published. Nevertheless, the Germans utilized two clauses to promote their undertakings. I submit to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-203 a copy of the Armistice Conventions, and I cite Article 18, which reads as follows:

“The maintenance costs of German occupation troops in French territory will be charged to the French Government.”

This clause was not contrary to the regulations of the Hague Conventions, but Germany imposed payment of enormous sums, far exceeding those necessary for the requirements of an occupation army. Thus she was enabled to dispose, without furnishing any compensation, of nearly all the money which, in fact, was cleverly transformed into an instrument of pillage.

Article 17 of the Armistice Convention reads as follows:

“The French Government undertakes to prevent any transfer of economic securities or stocks from the territory to be occupied by the German troops into the non-occupied area or into a foreign country. Those securities and stocks in the occupied territory can be disposed of only in agreement with the Reich Government, it being understood that the German Government will take into account what is vitally necessary for the population of the non-occupied territories.”

Apparently the purpose of this clause was to prevent things of any kind which might be utilized against Germany from being sent to England or to any of the colonies. But the occupying power took advantage of this to get control of production and the distribution of raw materials throughout France, since the non-occupied zone could not live without the products of the occupied zone and vice versa.

This intention of the Germans is proved particularly by Document Number 1741-PS which was discovered by the American army, and which I now submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-204.

I do not want to trouble the Tribunal by reading this long document, I shall give only a short summary.

It is a secret report, dated 5 July 1940 addressed to the President of the Council . . .

THE PRESIDENT: M. Gerthoffer, as this is not a document of which we can take judicial notice, I think you must read anything that you wish to put in evidence.

M. GERTHOFFER: I shall read a passage of the document to the Tribunal.


M. GERTHOFFER: “Article 17 grants Germany the right to seize the securities and economic reserves in occupied territory, and any arrangements of the French Government are subject to approval by Germany.

“In compliance with the request of the French Government, Germany has agreed that when considering applications of the French Government regarding the disposal of securities and reserves in the occupied zone, she will also take into consideration the needs of the inhabitants of the non-occupied zone.”

I shall cite only this passage in order to shorten my explanatory remarks, and I now come to the following document, which is in the nature of a reply to the German official who drew up this report, a document which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-205 (Document Number EC-409) and which is a document found by the American army. Here is the reply to the document from which I just quoted one passage:

“The elimination of the demarcation line is now out of the question, and if the revival of the economic life of France is thereby paralyzed, that is quite immaterial to us. The French have lost the war and must pay for the damages. Upon my objection that France would then soon become a center of unrest, I was answered that either shots would settle that or the occupation of the still free zone.

“For all concessions we make, the French must pay dearly in deliveries from the unoccupied zone or the colonies. We must strive to stop non-coordination in the economic field in France.”

Finally, another document captured by the U. S. Army which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-206 (Document Number EC-325), signed by Dr. Gramsch, gives us the following information:

“In the course of the negotiations regarding relaxation of the restrictions of the demarcation line, it has been suggested that the French Government seize the gold and foreign currency in the whole of France.”

Further in this document:

“The foreign currency reserves of occupied France would strengthen our war potential. This measure could, moreover, be used in negotiations with the French Government as a means of pressure in order to make it show a more conciliatory attitude in other respects.”

A study of these documents shows the German intent, in disregard of all legal principles, to get all the wealth and economy of France under their control.

Through force the Germans succeeded, after one year of occupation, in putting all or nearly all the French economy under their domination. This is evident from an article, published by Dr. Michel, director of the Economic Office, attached to the Military Government in France which appeared in the Berliner Börsen Zeitung, of 10 April 1942. I submit it as Document Number RF-207, and shall read one passage from it:

“The task of the competent offices of the German military administration should be regarded as directing ‘Economic Direction,’ that is issuing directives and at the same time seeing that these directives are really followed.”

Further, on Page 12 of the statement, Dr. Michel writes:

“Now that the direction of raw materials and the placing of orders has been organized and is functioning efficiently, rigorous restrictions on consumption not important to war economy are a matter of prime consideration in France. The restrictions imposed upon the French population in respect of food, clothing, footwear, and fuel, have been for some time more severe than in the Reich.”

After having shown you, Mr. President and members of the Tribunal, in this brief introduction concerning the economic spoliation of France, the consequences of German domination upon this country, I give you an account of the methods employed to arrive at such a result. This will be the purpose of the four following chapters: German seizure of means of payment; clandestine purchases of the black market; outwardly legal acquisitions; finally, impressment of labor.

I. German seizure of means of payment.

This seizure was the result of paying occupation costs, the one-way clearing system, and outright seizures and levies of gold, bank notes, foreign currency, and the imposition of collective fines (Page 15).

Indemnity for the maintenance of occupation troops:

I shall not recapitulate the legal principles of the matter, but shall merely confine myself to a few explanatory remarks, so that you may realize the pressure which was brought to bear on the leaders in order to obtain the payment of considerable sums.

As I have had the honor of pointing out to you, in the Armistice Conventions the principle of the maintenance of occupation troops is succinctly worded, with no stipulation as to the amount and the method of collection. The Germans took advantage of this to distort and amplify this commitment of France, which became nothing more than a pretext for the imposition of exorbitant tribute.

At the first sessions of the Armistice Commission, the discussions bore on this point, while the French pointed out that they could only be forced to pay a contractual indemnity representing the cost of maintaining an army strictly necessary for the occupation of the territory. The German General Mieth had to recognize the just foundation of this claim and declared that troops which were to fight against England would not be maintained at expense to France.

This is evident from an extract of the minutes of the Armistice Commission, which I submit as Document Number RF-208. But later this General Mieth apparently was overruled by his superiors, since in the course of a subsequent session, 16 July 1940, without expressly going back on his word, he declared in this respect that he could not give any reply, that this question would no longer be discussed, and that, in short, everything necessary would be done to enable the French Government to draw up its budget. This appears from an extract of the minutes of the Armistice Commission which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-209.

On 8 August 1940 Hemmen, Chief of the German Economic Delegation, at Wiesbaden, forwarded a memorandum to General Huntziger, President of the French Delegation, in which he stated:

“As at present it is impossible to assess the exact costs of occupation, daily installments of at least 20 million Reichsmark are required until further notice, at a rate of exchange of 1 mark to 20 French francs.

“That is to say, 400 million French francs daily. In this amount the costs for billeting troops were not included, but were to be paid separately.”

This is found in Document 210 (Document Number RF-210), which I submit to the Tribunal and which bears the signature of Hemmen.

These exorbitant requirements provoked the reply of 12 August 1940, in which it was emphasized that the amount of the daily payment did not permit the supposition that it had been fixed in consideration of the normal forces of an occupation army and the normal cost of the maintenance of this army, that, moreover, such forces as corresponded to the notified figure would be out of proportion to anything that military precedent and the necessity of the moment might reasonably justify. This is the content of a note of 12 August, submitted as Document Number RF-211.

On 15 August 1940 the German delegation took notice of the fact that the French Government was ready to pay some accounts, but in a categorical manner refused to discuss either the amount of payment or the distinction between occupation and operation troops. This is found in Document Number RF-212, which I submit to the Tribunal.

On 18 August the French delegation took note of the memorandum of 15 August and made the following reply (Document Number RF-213):

“. . . that France is to pay the costs for the maintenance of operation troops is a demand incontestably beyond the spirit and the provisions of the Armistice Convention.

“. . . that the required costs are converted into francs at a rate considerably in excess of the purchasing power of the mark and franc respectively; furthermore, that the purchases of the German Army in France are a means of control over the life in this country and that they will, moreover, as the German Government admits, partly be replaced by deliveries in kind.”

The memorandum terminates as follows:

“In these circumstances the onerous tribute required of the French Government appears arbitrary and exceeds to a considerable extent what might legitimately be expected to be demanded.

“The French Government, always anxious to fulfill the clauses of the Armistice Convention, can only appeal to the Reich Government in the hope that it will take into account the arguments presented above.”

THE PRESIDENT: The Court will adjourn now.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

M. GERTHOFFER: This morning I had the honor of presenting to the Tribunal the fact that the Germans demanded of France an indemnity of 400 million francs a day for the maintenance of their army of occupation. I indicated that the French leaders of that time, without failing to recognize the principle of their obligations, protested against the sum demanded.

At the moment of their arrival in France the Germans had issued, as in the other occupied countries, Reichskreditkasse notes and requisition vouchers over which the bank of issue had no control and which was legal tender only in France. This issue represented a danger, for the circulation of this currency was liable to increase at the mere will of the occupying power.

At the same time, by a decree of 17 May 1940, published in the VOBIF of 17 May 1940, Number 7, which appears as Document Number 214 in the document book (Exhibit Number RF-214), the occupying power fixed the rate of the Reichsmark at 20 French francs per mark, whereas the real parity was approximately 1 mark for 10 French francs.

The French delegation, having become concerned over the increasing circulation of the Reichskreditkasse notes and over the increased volume of German purchases, as well as over the rate of exchange of the mark, was informed by the German delegation, on 14 August 1940, of its refusal to withdraw these notes from circulation in France. This is to be found in a letter of 14 August, which I submit as Document Number RF-215.

The occupying power thus unjustifiably created a means of pressure upon the French Government of that time to make it yield to its demands concerning the amount of the occupation costs, as well as concerning the forced rate of the mark and the clearing agreements, which will be the subject of a later chapter.

General Huntziger, President of the French delegation, addressed several dramatic appeals to the German delegation in which he asked that France should not be hurled over the precipice, as shown by a teletype report addressed by Hemmen on 18 August 1940, to his Minister of Foreign Affairs, a report discovered by the United States Army, bearing the Document Number 1741-PS(5), which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-216. Here is the interesting passage of this report:

“These large payments would enable Germany to buy up the whole of France, including its industries and foreign investments, which would mean the ruin of France.”

In a letter and a note of 20 August, the German delegation summoned the French delegation to make partial payments, specifying that no distinction would be made between the German troops in France, that the strength of the German occupation would have to be determined by the necessities of the conduct of war. In addition, the fixing of the rate of the mark would be inoperative as far as the payments were concerned, since they would constitute only payments on account. I submit the note of the 20th of August of the German Government as Document Number RF-217.

The next day, 21 August 1940, General Huntziger, in the course of an interview with Hemmen, made a last vain attempt to obtain a reduction in the German demands. According to the minutes of this interview (Document Number RF-218), Germany was already considering close economic collaboration between herself and France through the creation of commissioners of exchange control and of foreign trade. At the same time Hemmen pledged elimination of the demarcation line between the two zones. But he refused to discuss the question of the amount of the occupation costs.

In a note of 26 August 1940, the French Government indicated that it considered itself obliged to yield under pressure and protested against the German demands; this note ended with the following passage:

“The French nation fears neither work nor suffering, but it must be allowed to live. This is why the French Government would be unable in the future to continue along the road to which it is committed if experience showed that the extent of the demands of the government of the Reich is incompatible with this right to live.” (Document Number RF-219.)

The Germans had the incontestable intention of utilizing the sums demanded as occupation costs, not only for the maintenance, the equipment, and the armament of their troops in France, or for operations based in France, but also for other purposes. This is shown in particular in a teletype from the Supreme Command of the Army, dated 2 September 1940, discovered by the United States Army, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-220 (Document Number EC-204). There is a passage from this teletype message which I shall read to the Tribunal (Page 22):

“To the extent to which the incoming amounts in francs are not required for the troops in France, the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces reserves for itself the right to make further use of the money. In particular, the allocation of the money to any offices not belonging to the Armed Forces must be authorized by the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces, in order to insure definitely that, first, the entire amount of francs required by the Armed Forces shall be covered and that thereafter any possible surplus shall remain at the disposal of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces for purposes important to the Four Year Plan.”

From another teletype message, which was seized in the same manner and which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-221 (Document Number EC-201), I read the following:

“It is clear that there was no agreement at all with the French as to what should be understood by ‘costs for maintenance of occupation troops’ in France. If we are in agreement among ourselves that at the present moment we must, for practical reasons, avoid interminable discussions with the French, on the other hand there must be no doubt that we have the right to interpret the term ‘maintenance’ in the broadest possible sense.”

Further on in the same teletype, Page 24, Paragraph 2, there is the following:

“In any case, the concessions demanded by the French on the question of specifying the amount of occupation costs and of the utilization of the francs thus delivered must be rejected.”

And finally the following paragraph:

“The utilization of sums paid in francs.

“Concerning the use of the francs paid which are not really required for the costs of the maintenance of the occupation troops in France, there can, of course, be no discussion with French authorities.”

The French then attempted, in vain, to obtain a reduction in the occupation costs and also a modification in the rate of the mark, but the Germans refused all discussion.

At the beginning of the year 1941, negotiations were resumed. In view of the intransigence of the Germans, the French Government suspended payments in the month of May 1941. Then, at the insistence of the occupying powers, they resumed it, but paid only 300 million francs a day. This is found in the document submitted as Document Number RF-222.

On the 15 December 1942, after the invasion of the entire French territory, Germany demanded that the daily payment of 300 million francs be raised to 500 million a day.

The sums paid for the occupation troops increased to a total of 631,866 million francs, or at the imposed rate, 31,593,300,000 marks. This amount is not only to be gathered from the information given by the French administration, but can also be verified by German documents, in particular by the report of Hemmen.

Hemmen, Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Berlin, had been designated President of the German economic delegation of the Armistice Commission, and he was acting, in fact, under the direct orders of his Minister, Von Ribbentrop, as a veritable dictator in economic questions. His chief assistant in Paris was Dr. Michel, of whom we have already spoken.

While maintaining his functions as chief of the economic delegation of the Armistice Commission of Wiesbaden, the same Hemmen was to be appointed by a decision of Hitler, under date of 19 December 1942, Reich Government delegate for economic questions, attached to the French Government. This is verified in the document submitted as Exhibit Number RF-223 (Document Number 1763-PS).

Hemmen periodically sent secret economic reports to his minister. These documents were discovered by the United States Army. They are of a fundamental importance in this part of the Trial, since, as you will see, they contain Germany’s admission of economic pillage.

These voluminous reports are submitted as Exhibits Numbers RF-224, 225, 226, 227, 228, and 229 (Documents Numbers 1986-PS, 1987-PS, 1988-PS, 1989-PS, 1990-PS, 1991-PS) of the French documentation. It is not possible for me, in view of their length, to read them in their entirety to the Tribunal. I shall confine myself to giving a few brief extracts therefrom in the course of my presentation. To show their importance, here is the translation of the last volume of the Hemmen reports. In this last report, printed in Salzburg on 15 December 1944, on Page 26, Hemmen recognizes that France has paid by way of indemnity for the maintenance of occupation troops 31,593,300,000 marks, that is . . .

THE PRESIDENT: M. Gerthoffer, these documents are in German, are they not?

M. GERTHOFFER: Yes, Mr. President, they are in German. I have only been able to have the last one translated into French. Because of their length it has not been possible for me to have all the translations made, but it is from the last volume, which is translated into French, that I will make certain very brief quotations by way of proof.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, well then are you confining yourself to the last document, and to certain passages in the last document?

M. GERTHOFFER: I shall limit myself to this.

THE PRESIDENT: And then, as these are not documents of which we can take judicial notice, only the parts which you read will be regarded as part of the Record, and be treated as in evidence.

M. GERTHOFFER: This enormous sum imposed was much greater than Germany was entitled to demand. In spite of the enormous sums which the Germans may have spent in France during the first two years, they were not able to use a sum less than half of that for which they were credited.

This is shown in the Hemmen report, where on Page 27 (Page 59 of the French translation) he gives a summary of the French payments made as occupational indemnity, and the German expenses in millions of marks corresponding to these expenses. This summary is very short. I shall read it to the Tribunal. It will constitute a German proof in support of my presentation.

French paymentGerman expenditure
in millions of marksin millions of marks

This makes from 1940 to 1944 a total amount of 31,593,300,000 marks paid by the French and 31,317 million marks of German expenditure.

The figures contained in this table unquestionably constitute the German admission of the exorbitance of the indemnity for the maintenance of occupation troops, for Germany was not able to utilize the credit at its disposal. Most of it served to finance expenses relative to armament, operation troops, and feeding of Germany. This is shown by Document Number EC-232, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-230.

According to the calculation of the “Institut de Conjoncture,” the maximum sum of the indemnity which could be exacted was 74,531,800,000 francs, taking as a basis the average daily costs of upkeep per troop unit during the Allied occupation of the Rhineland in 1919, namely the sum of seventeen francs or twenty-one francs with billeting, which was at that time provided by the German Government. According to the report on the average cost of living (coefficient -3.14) the sum of 21 francs should correspond to 66 francs at the 1939 value when applying the coefficient of depreciation of the franc during the occupation, that is 2.10 percent, or a daily average cost of 139 francs per day.

Granting that the real costs of the occupation army were half of those calculated by Hemmen, that is to say, 27,032,279,120 marks, this sum is still lower than the 74,531,800,000 calculated by the Institut de Conjoncture.

Even accepting the calculation most favorable to the accused, one can estimate that the indemnity imposed without justification amounted to 631,866 million less 74,531,800,000, that is, 557,334,200,000 francs.

In his final report, Page 10, and Page 22 of the French translation, Hemmen writes:

“. . . during the 4 years which have elapsed since conclusion of the Armistice, there has been paid for occupation costs and billeting 34,000 million Reichsmark, or 680,000 million francs. France thus contributed approximately 40 percent of the total cost of occupation and war contributions raised in all the occupied and Allied countries. This represents a charge of 830 Reichsmark, or 16,600 francs, per head of the population.”

In the second part of this chapter we shall examine briefly the question of clearing. The Tribunal is acquainted with the functioning of clearing, and I shall not revert to this. I shall indicate under what conditions the French Government at the time was made to sign agreements which were imposed upon it.

Parallel to the discussions relative to the indemnity for the maintenance of occupation troops, discussions were entered into concerning a Clearing Agreement.

On the 24 July 1940 the German Delegation announced that it would shortly submit a project. On 8 August 1940 Hemmen submitted to the French Delegation a project of a Franco-German arrangement for payment by compensation. This project, which I submit as Document Number RF-231(bis) of the French documentation, shows arbitrary provisions, which could not be voluntarily accepted.

It provided for financial transfers from France to Germany without any equivalent in financial transfers from Germany to France. It fixed the rate of exchange at 20 francs for 1 Reichsmark by a unilateral and purely arbitrary decision, whereas the rate on the Berlin Exchange was approximately 17.65 and the real parity of the two currencies, taking into account their respective purchasing power on both markets, was approximately ten francs for one Reichsmark.

I pass to Page 34. The French Delegation of the Armistice Commission submitted unsuccessfully a counter project, on 20 August 1940, and attempted to obtain a modification of the most unfavorable clauses. I submit this project as Document Number RF-232.

On 29 August 1940, the French delegation at the Armistice Commission brought up in detail the question of the parity of the franc and the Reichsmark. It called attention to the fact that the prohibition of the financial transfers from Germany to France would create gross inequality, whereas the transfers in the other direction were organized, and this meant the French Government giving its agreement to a veritable expropriation of French creditors. An extract from this report is submitted as Document Number RF-233.

In a letter of 31 August, General Huntziger again took up in vain the argument concerning the Franc-Reichsmark rate of exchange. I submit this letter as Document Number RF-234.

On 6 September 1940 the French delegation made a new attempt to obtain a modification of the most unfavorable clauses in the draft of the Clearing Agreement, but it encountered an absolute refusal. The German delegation meant to impose under the cloak of a bilateral agreement a project elaborated by it alone.

I quote a passage from the minutes of the Armistice Delegation (Document Number RF-235). Herr Schone, the German delegate, stated: “I cannot reopen the discussion on this question. I can make no concession.”

Concerning the Franc-Reichsmark rate of exchange, on 4 October 1940 Hemmen notified the French delegation that the rate of 20 francs must be considered as definite and according to his own words “this is no longer to be discussed.” He added that if the French for their part refused to conclude the payment agreement, that is to say, the arbitrary contract imposed by Germany, he would advise the Führer of this and that all facilities with regard to the demarcation line would be stopped. I submit as Document Number RF-236 this passage of the minutes.

Finally, in the course of the negotiations which followed on 10 October 1940, the French delegation attempted for the last time to obtain an alleviation of the drastic conditions which were imposed upon it, but the Germans remained intransigent and Hemmen declared in particular . . .

THE PRESIDENT: M. Gerthoffer, do these negotiations lead up to a conclusion, because if they do, would it not be sufficient for your purpose to give us the conclusion without giving all the negotiations which lead up to it?

M. GERTHOFFER: Mr. President, I am just finishing the statement with the last quotation, in which the Tribunal will see what pressure, what threats, were made upon the French, who were then in contact with the Germans. I shall have concluded the discussion on clearing with this quotation, if the Tribunal will allow it, it will be a short one and it will then be finished:

“You are attempting to make the rate of the mark fictitious. I beg you to warn your government that we shall break off negotiations. I have in fact foreseen that you would be unable to prevent prices from rising, but export prices are rising systematically. We shall find other means of achieving our aims. We shall get the bauxite ourselves.” (Document Number RF-237.)

This is the end of the quotation.

Perhaps the Tribunal will allow me a very brief comment. At the Armistice Commission all kinds of economic questions were discussed; and the French delegates resisted, for Germany wanted to seize immediately the bauxite beds which were in the unoccupied zone. This last sentence is the threat: if you do not accept our Clearing Agreement, we shall seize the bauxite. That is to say, we shall occupy by force of arms the free zone.

The so-called compensation agreement worked only to Germany’s advantage. The results of the agreement are the following:

At the moment of liberation the total transfer from France to Germany amounted to 221,114 million francs, while the total transfer from Germany to France amounted to 50,474 million francs. The difference—that is, 170,640 million francs credit balance on the French account—represents the means of payment which Germany improperly obtained through the functioning of the clearing which she had imposed.

I now come to the third part of this chapter, which will be very brief. This is the seizure of goods and collective fines.

Besides the transactions which were outwardly legal, the Germans proceeded to make seizures and impose collective fines in violation of the principles of international law.

First, a contribution of 1,000 million francs was imposed upon the French Jews on 17 December 1941 without any pretext. This is shown in the documents submitted as Document Number RF-239 and cannot be contested.

Secondly, a certain number of collective fines were imposed. The amount actually known to the Finance Ministry amounts to 412,636,550 francs.

Thirdly, the Germans proceeded to make immediate seizure of gold. Even Hemmen admits in his last secret report, on Pages 33 and 34, Page 72 of the French translation, that on 24 September 1940 the Germans seized 257 kilograms of gold from the port of Bayonne, which represents at the 1939 rate 12,336,000 francs; and in July 1940 they seized a certain number of silver coins amounting to 55 millions.

Still following the secret report of Hemmen, for the period between 1 January to 30 June 1942 Germany had seized in France 221,730 kilograms of gold belonging to the Belgian National Bank, which represents at the 1939 rate the sum of 9,500 million francs.

It is not possible for me to present in detail the conditions under which the Belgian gold was delivered to the Germans. This question in itself would involve me in an explanation which would take up several sessions. The fact is undeniable since it is admitted by Hemmen. I shall simply indicate that as early as the month of September 1940, in violation of international law, Hemmen had insisted on the delivery of this gold, which had, in May 1940, been entrusted by the National Bank of Belgium to the Bank of France. Moreover, these facts are part of the accusations made against the ex-ministers of the Vichy Government before the High Court of Justice in Paris.

The results of this procedure were long, and frequent discussions took place at the Armistice Commission, and an agreement was concluded on 29 October 1940, but was in fact not carried out because of difficulties raised by the French and Belgians.

According to the former Assistant Director of the Bank of France, the German pressure became stronger and stronger. Laval, who was then determined to pay any price for the authorization to go to Berlin, where he boasted that he would be able to achieve a large scale liberation of prisoners, the reduction of the occupation costs, as well as the elimination of the demarcation line, yielded to the German demands.

Thus, this gold was delivered to the Reichsbank and was requisitioned by order of the Plenipotentiary for the Four Year Plan. The documents relative to this question are submitted as Document Number RF-240.

I shall simply add that after the liberation the Provisional Government of the French Republic transferred to the National Bank of Belgium a quantity of gold equal to that which the Belgian Bank had entrusted to the Bank of France in the month of May 1940.

To conclude the gold question I shall indicate to the Tribunal that Germany was unable to obtain the gold reserve of the Bank of France, for it had been put in safekeeping in good time. Finally, still according to the last secret report of Hemmen, Pages 29 and 49 of the French translation, at the moment of their retreat the Germans seized without any right the sum of 6,899 million francs from branches of the Bank of France in Nancy, Belfort, and Epinal. Document 1741-PS (24). (Exhibit Number RF-241.)

I note for the Record that during the occupation the Germans seized great quantities of gold which they arranged to be bought from private citizens by intermediaries. I cannot give figures for this. I simply touch on the question for the Record.

If we summarize the question of the means of payment which Germany unduly requisitioned in France, we shall reach—still taking the calculation most favorable to the defendants and taking the maximum amount for the cost of maintaining occupation troops—a minimum total of 745,833,392,550 francs, in round figures 750,000 million francs.

I now come to Page 50, that is to say the use which the Germans made of these considerable sums; and first of all, the black market organized by the occupying power. Here again I don’t want to take advantage of your kind attention. I have had the honor of presenting to you the mechanism of the black market in all the occupied countries. I have indicated how it arose, how the Germans utilized it, how, under the orders of the Defendant Göring, it was organized and exploited. I do not wish to revert to this, and I shall pass over the whole section of my written exposé which was devoted to the black market in France.

I come to Page 69 of my written exposé. Chapter 3: Ostensibly legal acquisitions.

Under the pressure of the Germans, the Vichy Government had to consent to reserve for them a very high quota of products of all kinds. In exchange the Germans undertook to furnish raw materials, the quantities of which were determined by them alone. But these raw materials, when they were delivered, which was not always the case, were for the most part absorbed by the industry which was forced to supply them with finished products. In fact, there was no compensation, since the occupiers got back in the form of finished products the raw materials delivered and did not in reality give anything in return.

In the report of the Economic Control which has already been quoted, submitted as Document Number RF-107, the following example may be noted which I shall read to the Tribunal:

“An agreement permitted the purchase in the free zone of 5,000 trucks destined for the German G.B.K., whereby the Reich furnished five tons of steel per vehicle or a total of 25,000 tons of steel destined for French industry. In view of the usual destination of the products of our metal industry at that time, this was obviously a one-sided bargain, indeed if our information is exact, the deliveries of steel to be made in return were not even fulfilled, and they were partly used for the defense of the Mediterranean coast, rails, antitank defenses, et cetera.”

It is appropriate to call attention to the fact that a considerable part of the levies in kind were the object of no regulation whatever, either because the Germans remained debtors in these transactions, or that they considered without justification that these levies constituted war booty.

In regard to this there are no documents available; however, the United States Army has discovered a secret report of one called Kraney, the representative of Roges, an organization which was charged with collecting both war booty and purchases on the black market. It appears from this report that in September 1944, the Roges had resold to Germany for 10,858,499 marks, or 217,169,980 francs, objects seized in the southern zone as war booty. I submit this document as Exhibit Number RF-244.

As a result of the means of payment exacted by Germany and of requisitions regulated by her, or not, France was literally despoiled. Enormous quantities of articles of all kinds were removed by the occupiers. According to information given by the French statistical services, preliminary estimates of the minimum of these levies have been made. These estimates do not include damages resulting from military operations, but solely the German spoliations, computed in cases of doubt at a minimum figure. They will be summarized in the eight following sections.

1. Levies of agricultural produce.

I submit as Document Number RF-245, the report of the Ministry of Agriculture and a statistical table drawn up by the Institut de Conjoncture, summarizing the official German levies which included neither individual purchases nor black market purchases which were both considerable. It is not possible for me to read to the Tribunal a table as long as this; I shall confine myself to giving a brief résumé of this statistical table.

Here are some of the chief agricultural products which were seized and their estimate in thousands of francs (I am indicating the totals in round figures): Cereals, 8,900,000 tons, estimate 22 million francs; meat, 900,000 tons, estimate 30 million; fish, 51,000 tons, estimate 1 million; wines, liquors, 13,413,000 hectoliters, estimate 18,500,000; colonial products, 47,000 tons, estimate 805,900; horses and mules, 690,000 head; wood, 36 million cubic meters; sugar, 11,600,000 tons.

I shall pass over the details. The Germans settled through clearing and by means of occupation costs 113,620,376,000 francs; the balance, that is 13,000 million, was not settled in any way.

Naturally, these estimates do not include considerable damage caused to forests as a result of abnormal cutting and the reduction of areas under cultivation. There is no mention, either, of the reduction in livestock and damage caused by soil exhaustion. This is a brief summary of the percentage of official German levies on agriculture in relation to the total French production: Wheat, 13 percent; oats, 75 percent; hay and straw, 80 percent; meat, 21 percent; poultry, 35 percent; eggs, 60 percent; butter, 20 percent; preserved fish, 30 percent; champagne, 56 percent; wood for industrial uses, 50 percent; forest fuels, 50 percent; alcohol, 25 percent. These percentages, I repeat, do not include quantities of produce which the Germans bought up either by individual purchases or on the black market.

I have had the privilege of presenting to you the fact that these operations were of a considerable scope and amounted for France approximately to several hundred thousand millions of francs. The quantities of agricultural produce thus taken from French consumers are incalculable. I shall simply indicate that wines, champagne, liquors, meat, poultry, eggs, butter were the object of a very considerable clandestine traffic to the benefit of the Germans and that the French population, except for certain privileged persons, was almost entirely deprived of these products.

In Section 2 of this chapter I shall discuss the important question concerning levies of raw materials.

THE PRESIDENT: That would be a good time for us to adjourn for ten minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

M. GERTHOFFER: The summary of the levies in raw materials from the statistical point of view is contained in charts which I shall not take the time to read to the Tribunal. I shall submit them as Document Number RF-246 and point out that the total amount of these supplies reaches the sum of 83,804,145,000 francs.

On Pages 77 to 80 of my written statement I had thought it necessary to make a summary of these charts, but I consider it is not possible to read even the summary because the figures are too numerous.

According to information provided by the French administration, of that sum the Germans settled, by way of occupation costs and clearing, only 59,254,639,000 francs, leaving the difference of 19,506,109,000 francs charged to the French Treasury.

The percentage of the German levies in relation to the whole French production can be summarized in a chart which I have given in my brief and I ask the Tribunal for permission to read it:

“The percentage of levies of raw materials in relation to French production: Coal, 29 percent; electric power, 22 percent; petroleum and motor fuel, 80 percent; iron ore, 74 percent; steel products, crude and half finished, 51 percent; copper, 75 percent; lead, 43 percent; zinc, 38 percent; tin, 67 percent; nickel, 64 percent; mercury, 50 percent; platinum, 76 percent; bauxite, 40 percent; aluminum, 75 percent; magnesium, 100 percent; sulphur carbonate, 80 percent; industrial soap, 67 percent; vegetable oil, 40 percent; carbosol, 100 percent; rubber, 38 percent; paper and cardboard, 16 percent; wool, 59 percent; cotton, 53 percent; flax, 65 percent; leather, 67 percent; cement, 55 percent; lime, 20 percent; acetone, 21 percent.”

This enumeration permits us to consider that officially about three-quarters of the raw materials were seized by the occupying power, but these statistics must be qualified in two ways: A large part of the quota of raw materials theoretically left to the French economy was in fact reserved for priority industries, that is to say, those industries whose production was reserved for the occupying power. Secondly, these requisitions and percentages include only the figures of official deliveries; but we have seen that the Germans acquired considerable quantities of raw materials from the black market, especially precious metals: gold, platinum, silver, radium, or rare metals, such as mercury, nickel, tin and copper.

In fact, one can say in general that the raw materials which were left for the needs of the population were insignificant.

Now, I come to Section 3: Levies of manufactured goods and products of the mining industry.

As I had the honor to point out to you in my general remarks, the Germans, using divers means of pressure, succeeded in utilizing directly or indirectly the greater part of the French industrial production. I shall not go over these facts again and I shall immediately pass to a summary of the products which were delivered. I submit as Document Number RF-248 a chart which contains statistical data, according to industries, of levies by the occupying power of manufactured goods during the course of the occupation.

I do not want to tax the patience of the Tribunal by reading this; I shall simply cite the summary of this chart, which is as follows: Orders for products finished and invoiced from 25 June 1940 until the liberation—Mechanical and electrical industries, 59,455 million; chemical industry, 11,744 million; textiles and leather, 15,802 million; building and construction material, 56,256 million; mines (coal, aluminum, and phosphates), 4,160 million; iron industry, 4,474 million; motor fuel, 568 million; naval construction, 6,104 million; aeronautical construction, 23,620 million; miscellaneous industries, 2,457 million; making a total of 184,640 million.

These statistics should be commented upon as follows:

1) The information which is contained here does not include the production of the very industrialized departments of Nord and of Pas de Calais, attached to the German administration of Brussels, nor does it include the manufactures of the Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin, and Moselle departments, actually incorporated into the Reich.

2) Out of the total sum of 184,640 million francs worth of supplies, the information which we have to date does not as yet permit us to fix the amount regulated by the Germans by way of either occupation costs or clearing, or the balance which was not made the subject of any settlement.

3) If, on the basis of contracts, one made an estimate of the industrial production levied by Germany in the departments of Nord and Pas de Calais, one would obtain a figure for those two departments of 18,500 million, which would bring the approximate total up to more than 200,000 million francs.

The extent of the German levies on manufactured products is summarized in the following chart which I submit to the Tribunal, and which I have summarized on Page 87 of my written statement. I shall take the liberty of reading it once more to the Tribunal. It will show the proportion of the manufactured goods which the French population was deprived of: Automobile construction, 70 percent; electrical and radio construction, 45 percent; industrial precision parts, 100 percent; heavy castings, 100 percent; foundries, 46 percent; chemical industries, 34 percent; rubber industry, 60 percent; paint and varnish, 60 percent; perfume, 33 percent; wool industry, 28 percent; cotton weaving, 15 percent; flax and cotton weaving, 12 percent; industrial hides, 20 percent; buildings and public works, 75 percent; woodwork and furniture, 50 percent; lime and cement, 68 percent; naval construction, 79 percent; aeronautic construction, 90 percent.

The scrutiny of this chart leads to the following remarks:

The proportion of entirely finished products is very large, for instance: automobiles, 70 percent; precision instruments, 100 percent; heavy castings, 100 percent; whereas, the proportion of the products in the process of manufacture is not as great, for example: foundry, 46 percent; chemical industry, 34 percent; et cetera.

This state of affairs results from the fact that the Germans directed the products in the process of manufacture—in theory reserved for the French population—into finishing industries which had priority, that is to say, whose production was reserved for them.

Finally, through their purchases on the black market, the Germans procured an enormous quantity of textiles, machine tools, leather, perfumes, and so forth. The French population was almost completely deprived of textiles, in particular, during the occupation. That is also the case as regards leather.

Now, I reach Section 4: the removal of industrial tools.

I shall not impose on your time. This question has already been treated as far as the other occupied countries are concerned. I would merely point out that in France it was the subject of statistical estimates which I submit to you as Document Number RF-251. These statistical estimates show that the value of the material which was removed from the various French factories, either private or public enterprise, exceeds the sum of 9,000 million francs.

It was observed that for many of the machines which were removed, the Germans merely indicated the inventory values after reduction for depreciation and not the replacement value of the machines.

I now come to Section 5: Securities and Foreign Investments. In Document EC-57, which I submitted as Exhibit Number RF-105 at the beginning of my presentation, I had indicated that the Defendant Göring himself had informed you of the aims of the German economic policy and he ventured to say that the extension of German influence over foreign enterprises was one of the purposes of German economic policy.

These directives were to be expressed much more precisely in the document of the 12th of August 1940, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-252 (Document Number EC-40), from which I shall read a short extract:

“Since”—as the document says—“the principal economic enterprises are in the form of stock companies, it is first of all indispensable to secure the ownership of securities in France.”

Further on it says:

“The exerting of influence by way of ordinances. . . .”

Then the document indicates all the means to be employed to achieve this, in particular this passage concerning international law:

“According to Article 46 of the Hague Convention concerning Land Warfare, private property cannot be confiscated. Therefore the confiscation of securities is to be avoided in so far as it does not concern state owned property. According to Article 42 and following of the Hague Convention concerning Land Warfare, the authority exercising power in the occupied enemy territory must restrict itself in principle to utilizing measures which are necessary to re-establish or maintain public order and public life. According to international law it is forbidden in principle to eliminate the still existing boards of companies and to replace them by ‘commissioners.’ Such a measure would, from the point of view of international law, probably not be considered as efficacious. Consequently, we must strive to force the various functionaries of such companies to work for German economy, but not to dismiss those persons . . .”

Further on:

“If these functionaries refuse to be guided by us, we must remove them from their posts and replace them by persons we can use.”

We will briefly consider the three categories of seizure of financial investments, which were the purpose of German spoliation during the occupation, and first of all the seizure of financial investments in companies whose interests were abroad.

On the 14th of August 1940 an ordinance was published in VOBIF, Page 67 (Document Number RF-253), forbidding any negotiations regarding credits or foreign securities. But mere freezing of securities did not satisfy the occupying power; it was necessary for them to become outwardly the owners of the securities in order to be able, if necessary, to negotiate them in neutral countries.

They had agents who purchased foreign securities from private citizens who needed money, but above all, they put pressure on the Vichy Government in order to obtain the handing over of the principal French investments in foreign countries. That is why, in particular, after long discussions in the course of which the German pressure was very great, considerable surrenders of securities were made to the Germans.

It is not possible for me to submit to the Tribunal the numerous documents concerning the surrender of these securities: minutes, correspondence, valuations. There would be without exaggeration, several cubic meters of them. I shall merely quote several passages as examples.

Concerning the Bor Mines Company, the copper mines in Yugoslavia of which the greater part of the capital was in French hands, the Germans appointed, on 26 July 1940, an administrative commissioner for the branches of the company situated in Yugoslavia. This is found in Document Number RF-254 which I submit to the Tribunal. The administrative commissioner was Herr Neuhausen, the German Consul General for Yugoslavia and Bulgaria.

In the course of the discussions of the Armistice Commission Hemmen declared (extract from the minutes of 27 September 1940 at 10:30, which I submit to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-255):

“Germany wishes to acquire the shares of the company without consideration for the juridical objections made by the French. Germany obeys, in fact, the imperative consideration of the economic order. She suspects that the Bor Mines are still delivering copper to England and she has definitely decided to take possession of these mines.”

Faced with the refusal of the French delegates, Hemmen declared at the meeting of 4 October 1940 (I submit to the Tribunal an extract from the minutes of this meeting as Document Number RF-256):

“I should regret to have to transmit such a reply to my government. See if the French Government cannot reconsider its attitude. If not, our relations will become very difficult. My government is anxious to bring this matter to a close. If you refuse, the consequences will be extremely grave.”

M. de Boisanger, the French Delegate, replied:

“I will therefore put that question once more.”

And Hemmen replied:

“I shall expect your reply by tomorrow. If it does not come, I shall transmit the negative reply which you have just given.”

Then, in the course of the meeting on 9 January 1941, Hemmen stated—I submit again an extract from the minutes, Document Number RF-257:

“At first I was entrusted with this affair at Wiesbaden. Then it was taken over by Consul General Neuhausen on behalf of a very high-ranking personage (Marshal Göring), and it was handled directly in Paris by M. Laval and M. Abetz.”

As far as French investments in petroleum companies in Romania are concerned, the pressure was no less. In the course of the meeting of 10 October 1940, of the Armistice Commission, the same Hemmen stated (I submit as Document Number RF-258, an extract from the minutes of the meeting):

“Moreover we shall be satisfied with the majority of the shares. We will leave in your hands anything which we do not need for this purpose. Can you accept on this point in principle? The matter is urgent, as for the Bor Mines. We want all.”

On the 22 November 1940, Hemmen stated again (I submit this extract of the minutes of the Armistice Commission meeting as Document Number RF-259):

“We are still at war and we must exert immediate influence over petroleum production in Romania. Therefore we cannot wait for the peace treaty.”

When the French delegates asked that the surrender should at least be made in exchange for a material compensation, Hemmen replied in the course of the same meeting:

“Impossible. The sums which you are to receive from us will be taken out of the occupation costs. This will save you from using the printing. This kind of participation will be made general on the German side when the new collaboration policy has once been defined.”

We might present indefinitely quotations of this kind, and many even much more serious from the point of view of violation of the provisions of the Hague Convention.

All these surrenders, apparently agreed to by the French, were accepted only under German pressure. Scrutiny of the contracts agreed upon shows great losses to those who handed over their property and enormous profits for those who acquired it, without the latter having furnished any real compensation.

The Germans thus obtained French shares in the Romanian petroleum companies, in the enterprises of Central Europe, Norway, and the Balkans, and especially those of the Bor Mines Company which I mentioned. These surrenders paid by francs coming from occupation costs, rose to a little more than two thousand million francs. The others were paid by the floating of French loans abroad, notably in Holland, and through clearing.

Having given you a brief summary of the seizure of French business investments abroad, I shall also examine rapidly the German seizure of registered capitals of French industrial companies.

Shortly after the Armistice, in conformity with the directives of the Defendant Göring, a great number of French industries were the object of proposals on the part of German groups anxious to acquire all or part of the assets of these companies.

This operation was facilitated by the fact that the Germans, as I have had the honor of pointing out to you, were in reality in control of industry and had taken over the direction of production, particularly by the system of “Paten Firmen.” Long discussions took place between the occupying power and the French Ministry of Finance, whose officials strove, sometimes without success, to limit to 30 percent the maximum of German shares. It is not possible for me to enter into details of the seizure of these shares. I shall point out, however, that the Finance Minister handed to us a list of the most important ones, which are reproduced in a chart appended to the French Document Book under Document RF-260 (Exhibit Number RF-260).

The result was that the seizure of shares, fictitiously paid through clearing, reached the sum of 307,436,000 francs; through occupation costs accounts, 160 millions; through foreign stocks a sum which we have not been able to determine; and finally, through various or unknown means, 28,718,000 francs.

We shall conclude the paragraph of this fifth section by quoting part of the Hemmen report relative to these questions (Page 63 of the original and 142 of the French translation). Here is what Hemmen writes, in Salzburg in January 1944, concerning this subject:

“The fifth report upon the activity of the delegation is devoted to the difficulty of future seizures of shares in France, in the face of the very challenging attitude of the French Government concerning the surrender of valuable domestic and foreign securities. This resistance increased during the period covered by the report to such an extent that the French Government was no longer disposed to give any approval to the transfer of shares even if economic compensation were offered.”

Further on, Page 63 in the third paragraph:

“During the 4 years of the occupation of France the Armistice Delegation transferred stocks representing altogether about 121 million Reichsmark from French to German ownership, among them shares in enterprises important for the war in other countries, in Germany, and in France. Details of this are found in the earlier reports of the activities of the delegation. For about half of these transfers, economic compensation was given on the German side by delivery of French holdings of foreign shares acquired in Holland and in Belgium, while the remaining amount was paid by way of clearing or occupation costs. The use of French foreign investments as a means of payment resulted in a difference, between the German purchasing price and the French rate, of about 7 million Reichsmark which went to the Reich.”

There is reason to emphasize that the profit derived by Germany merely from the financial point of view is not 7 million Reichsmark, or 140 million francs according to Hemmen, but much greater. In fact, Germany paid principally for these acquisitions with the occupation indemnity, clearing, and French loans issued in Holland or in Belgium, the appropriation of which by Germany amounted to spoliation of these countries and could not constitute a real compensation for France.

These surrenders of holdings, carried out under the cloak of legality, moved the United Nations in their declarations made in London on 5 January 1943 to lay down the principle that such surrenders should be declared null and void, even when carried out with the apparent consent of those who made them.

I submit as Document Number RF-261, the solemn statement signed in London on 5 January 1943, which was published in the French Journal Officiel on 15 August 1944, at the time of the liberation. I might add that all these surrenders are the subject of indictments before the French Courts of high treason against Frenchmen who surrendered their holdings to the Germans, even though undeniable pressure was brought to bear upon them.

I shall conclude this chapter with one last observation: The German seizure of real estate in France. It is still difficult to give at this time a precise account of this subject, for these operations were made most often through an intermediary with an assumed name. The most striking is that of a certain Skolnikoff, who during the occupation was able to invest nearly 2,000 million francs in the purchase of real estate.

This individual of indeterminate nationality, who lived in poverty before the war, enriched himself in a scandalous fashion, thanks to his connection with the Gestapo and his operations on the black market with the occupying power. But whatever may have been the profits he derived from his dishonest activities, he could not personally have acquired real estate to the value of almost 2,000 million in France.

I submit, as Document Number RF-262, a copy of a police report concerning this individual. It is not possible for me to read this to the Tribunal in its entirety, but this report contains the list of the buildings and real estate companies acquired by this individual. These are without question choice buildings of great value. It is evident that Skolnikoff, an agent for the Gestapo, was an assumed name for German personalities whose identity has not been discovered up to the present.

Now I shall take up Section 6; the requisition of transport and communication material.

A report from the French administration gives us statistics which are reproduced in very complete charts, which I shall not read to the Tribunal. I shall merely point out that most of the locomotives and rolling stock in good shape were removed, and that the total sum of the requisitions of transport material reaches the sum of 198,450 million francs.

I shall now deal with requisitions in the departments of Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin, and Moselle. From the beginning of the invasion the Germans incorporated these departments into the Reich. This question will be presented by the French Prosecution when they discuss the question of Germanization. From the point of view of economic spoliation it must be stressed that the Germans sought to derive a maximum from these three departments. If they paid in marks for a certain number of products, they made no settlement whatever for the principal products, especially coal, iron, crude oil, potash, industrial material, furniture, and agricultural machinery.

The information relating to this is given by the French administration in a chart which I shall summarize briefly and which I submit as Document Number RF-264. The value of requisitions made in the three French departments of the east—requisitions not paid for by the Germans—reaches the sum of 27,315 million francs.

To conclude the question of the departments in the east, I should like to point out to the Tribunal that my colleague, who will discuss the question of Germanization, will show how the firm, Hermann Göring Werke, in which the Defendant Göring had considerable interests, appropriated equipment from mines of the large French company called the “Petits-Fils de François de Wendel et Cie.” (See Document RF-1300.)

I now come to the Section 8, concerning miscellaneous levies.

1) Spoliations in Tunisia. The Germans went into Tunisia on 10 November 1942 and were driven out by the Allied Armies in May 1943. During this period they indulged in numerous acts of spoliation.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you think that it is necessary to go into details of the seizures in this part of the country if they are of the same sort as those in other parts of the country?

M. GERTHOFFER: Mr. President, it is similar; there is only one difference, and that concerns the amount. I believe the principle cannot be contested by anyone; therefore I shall go on.

Gentlemen, I shall also pass over the question of compulsory labor. I shall conclude my summary, however, by pointing out to the Tribunal that French economy suffered enormous losses from the deportation of workers, a subject which was discussed by my colleague. We have calculated the losses in working hours and we estimate—and this will be my only remark—that French economy lost 12,550 million working hours through the deportation of workers, a figure which does not include the number of workers who were more or less forced to work for the Germans in enterprises in France.

If you will permit me, gentlemen, I shall conclude this presentation concerning France by giving you a general review of the situation; and I shall refer once more to Hemmen, the economic dictator who actually ruined my country upon the orders of his masters, the defendants. While in the first five reports submitted, despite their apparently technical nature, the author shows the assurance of the victor who can allow himself to do anything, in the last report of 15 December 1944 at Salzburg, the only one I shall refer to, Hemmen sought visibly, while giving his work a technical quality, to plead the case of Germany—that of his Nazi masters and his own case. He only succeeded, however, in bringing forth unwittingly an implacable accusation against the nefarious work with which he was entrusted. Here are some short extracts, gentlemen, of Hemmen’s final report.

On Page 1 of his report, Page 2 of the French text, he implied the co-responsibility of the German leaders, and Göring particularly. He writes as follows:

“According to the directives formulated on 5 July 1940 by the Reich Marshal and Delegate of the Four Year Plan, concerning the existing legal situation, the Armistice Convention does not give us rights in the economic domain of the unoccupied parts of France, not even when loosely interpreted.”

A little farther on he admits blackmail with regard; to the demarcation line with these words (Page 3 of the translation):

“The Pétain Government manifested from the beginning a strong desire to re-establish rapidly the destroyed economy by means of German support and to find work for the French population in order to avoid the threat of unemployment, but above all to reunite the two French zones, separated by the demarcation line, into a unified economic and administrative territory. They were at the same time willing to bring this territory into line with German economic direction, under French management, thoroughly reorganizing it according to the German model.”

Then Hemmen adds:

“In return for considerable relaxations regarding the demarcation line, the Armistice Delegation has come to an agreement with the French Government to introduce into French legislation the German law, relating to foreign currency.”

Farther on, concerning pressure, on Page 4, and Page 7 of the translation, Hemmen wrote:

“Thereby the automatic rise of prices aggravated by the unchecked development of the black market was felt all the more strongly, since wages were forcibly fixed.”

I pass over the passage in which Hemmen speaks of French resistance. However, I should like to point out to the Tribunal that, on Page 13—Page 29 of the translation—Hemmen tries to show through financial evaluations and most questionable arguments that the cost of the war per head was heavier for the Germans than for the French. He himself destroys with one word the whole system of defense which he had built up by writing at the end of his bold calculations that from autumn 1940 to February 1944 the cost of living increased 166 percent in France, while in Germany it increased only 7 percent. Now, gentlemen, it is, I am quite sure, through the increase in the cost of living that one measures the impoverishment of a country.

Last of all, on Page 4, and this is my last quotation from the Hemmen report, he admits the German crime in these terms:

“Through the removal, for years, of considerable quantities of merchandise of every kind without economic compensation, a perceptible decrease in substance had resulted with a corresponding increase in monetary circulation, which had led ever more noticeably, to the phenomena of inflation and especially to a devaluation of money and a lowering of the purchasing power.”

These material losses, we may say, can be repaired. Through work and saving we can re-establish, in a more or less distant future, the economic situation of the country. That is true, but there is one thing which can never be repaired—the results of privations upon the physical state of the population.

If the other German crimes, such as deportations, murders, massacres, make one shudder with horror, the crime which consisted of deliberately starving whole populations is no less odious.

In the occupied countries, in France particularly, many persons died solely because of undernourishment and because of lack of heat. It was estimated that people require from 3,000 to 3,500 calories a day and heavy laborers about 4,000. From the beginning of the rationing in September 1940 only 1,800 calories per day per person were distributed. Successively the ration decreased to 1,700 calories in 1942, then to 1,500, and finally fell to 1,220 and 900 calories a day for adults and to 1,380 and 1,300 for heavy laborers; old persons were given only 850 calories a day. But the true situation was still worse than the ration theoretically allotted through ration cards; in fact, frequently a certain number of coupons were not honored.

The Germans could not fail to recognize the disastrous situation as far as public health was concerned, since they themselves estimated in the course of the war of 1914-1918 that the distribution of 1,700 calories a day was a “regime of slow starvation, leading to death.”

What aggravated the situation still more was the quality of the rations which were distributed. Bread was of the poorest quality; milk, when there was any, was skimmed to the point where the fat content amounted to only 3 percent. The small amount of meat given to the population was of bad quality. Fish had disappeared from the market. If we add to that an almost total lack of clothing, shoes, and fuel, and the fact that frequently neither schools nor hospitals were heated, one may easily understand what the physical condition of the population was.

Incurable sicknesses such as tuberculosis developed and will continue to extend their ravages for many years. The growth of children and adolescents is seriously impaired. The future of the race is a cause for the greatest concern. The results of economic spoliation will be felt for an indefinite period.

THE PRESIDENT: Could you tell me what evidence you have for your figures of calories?

M. GERTHOFFER: I am going to show you this at the end of my presentation. It is a report of a professor at the Medical School of Paris who has been specially commissioned by the Dean of the University to make a report on the results of undernourishment. I will quote it at the end of my statement. I am almost there.

The results of this economic spoliation will be felt for an indefinite length of time. The exhaustion is such that, despite the generous aid brought by the United Nations, the situation of the occupied countries, taken as a whole, is still alarming. In fact, the complete absence of stocks, the insufficiency of the means of production and of transport, the reduction of livestock and the economic disorganization, do not permit the allotting of sufficient rations at this time. This poverty, which strikes all occupied countries, can disappear only gradually over a long period of time, the length of which no one can yet determine.

If in certain rich agricultural regions the producers were able during the occupation to have and still do have a privileged situation from the point of view of food supply, the same is not true in the poorer regions nor in urban districts. If we consider that in France the urban population is somewhat more numerous than the rural population, we can state clearly that the great majority of the French population was subject to and still remains subject to a food regime definitely insufficient.

Professor Guy Laroche, delegated by the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of Paris to study the consequences of undernourishment in France as a result of German requisitions, has just sent a report on this question.

I do not wish to prolong my explanation by reading the entire report. I shall ask the Tribunal’s permission to quote the conclusion, which I submit as Document Number RF-264(bis). I received the whole report only a few days ago. It is submitted in its entirety, but I have not been able to have 50 copies made of it. Two copies have been made and are being submitted. Here are Dr. Laroche’s conclusions:

“We see how great the crime of rationing was, which was imposed by the Germans upon the French during the occupation period from 1940 to 1944. It is difficult to give exact figures for the number of human lives lost due to excessive rationing. We would need general statistics and these we have been unable to establish.

“Nevertheless, without overestimating, we may well believe that, including patients in institutions, the loss of human life from 1940 to 1944 reached at least 150,000 persons. We must add a great number of cases which were not fatal, of physical and mental decline often incurable, of retarded development in children, and so forth.

“We think that three conclusions can be drawn from this report, which of course is incomplete:

“1.) The German occupation authorities deliberately sacrificed the lives of patients in institutions and hospitals.

“2.) From the way everything happened it seemed as if they had wished to organize, in a rational and scientific fashion, the decline of the health of adolescents and adults.

“3.) Suckling babies and young children received a normal ration; it is probable that this privileged position is explained by the fact that the Nazi leaders hoped to spread their doctrine more easily among beings who would not have known any other conditions of life and who would, because of a planned education, have accepted their doctrine, for they knew they could not expect to convince adolescents and adults except through force.”

The report is signed by Professor Guy Laroche.

This report, gentlemen, has attached to it a photograph, which you will find at the end of the document book. I beg to hand it to you. The unfortunate beings that you see in that picture are not the victims of a concentration or reprisal camp. They are simply the patients of an asylum in the outskirts of Paris who fell into this state of physical weakness as a result of undernourishment. If these men had had the diet of the asylum prior to rationing, they would have been as strong as normal people. Unfortunately for them they were reduced to the official rationing and were unable to obtain the slightest supplement.

Do not let adversaries say: “But the German people are just as badly off!”

I should reply that, in the first place, this is not true. The German did not suffer cold for four years; he was not undernourished. On the contrary, he was well-fed, warmly clothed, warmly housed, with products stolen from the occupied countries, leaving only the minimum necessary for existence for the peoples of these countries.

Remember, gentlemen, the words of Göring when he said: “If famine is to reign, it will not reign in Germany.”

Secondly I should say to my adversaries if they made such an objection: The Germans and their Nazi leaders wanted the war which they launched, but they had no right to starve other peoples in order to carry out their attempt at world domination. If today they are in a difficult situation, it is the result of their own behavior; and they seem to me to have no right to take recourse to the famous sentence: “I did not want that.”

I am coming to the end of my statement. If you will permit me, gentlemen, I will conclude in two minutes the whole of this presentation by reminding the Tribunal in a few words what the premeditated crime was, of which the German leaders have been accused, from the economic point of view.

The application of racial and living space theories was bound to engender an economic situation which could not be solved and force the Nazi leaders to war.

In a modern society because of the division of labor, of its concentration, and of its scientific organization, the concept of national capital takes on more and more a primary importance, whatever may be the social principles of its distribution between nationals, or its possession in all or in part by states.

Now, a national capital, public or private, is constituted by the joint effort of the labor and the savings of successive generations.

Saving, or the putting into reserve of the products of labor as a result of deprivations freely consented to, must exist in proportion to the needs of the concentration of the industrial enterprises of the country.

In Germany, a country highly-industrialized, this equilibrium did not exist. In fact, the expenditures, private or public, of that country surpassed its means; saving was insufficient. The establishment of a system of obligatory savings was formulated only through the creation of new taxes and has never replaced true savings.

As a result of the war of 1914-1918, after having freed herself of the burden of reparations (and I must point out that two-thirds of the sum remained charged to France as far as this country is concerned), Germany, who had established her gold reserve in 1926, began a policy of foreign loans and spent without counting the cost. Finding it impossible to keep her agreements, she found no more creditors.

After Hitler’s accession to power her policy became more definite. She isolated herself in a closed economic system, utilizing all her resources for the preparation of a war which would permit her, or at least that is what she hoped, to take through force the property of her western neighbors and then to turn against the Soviet Union in the hope of exploiting, for her profit, the immense wealth of that great country. It is the application of the theories formulated in Mein Kampf, which had as a corollary the enslavement and then the extermination of the populations of conquered countries.

In the course of the occupation the invaded nations were systematically pillaged and brutally enslaved; and this would have permitted Germany to obtain her war aims, that is to say, to take the patrimony of the invaded countries and to exterminate their populations gradually, if the valor of the United Nations had not delivered them. Instead of becoming enriched from the looted property, Germany had to sink it into a war which she had provoked, right up to the very moment of her collapse.

Such actions, knowingly perpetrated and executed by the German leaders contrary to international law and particularly contrary to the Hague Convention, as well as the general principles of penal law in force in all civilized nations, constitute War Crimes for which they must answer before your high jurisdiction.

Mr. President, I should like to add that the French Prosecution had intended to present a statement on the pillage of works of art in the occupied countries of western Europe. But this question has already been discussed in two briefs of our American colleagues, briefs which seem to us to establish beyond any question the responsibility of the defendants. In order not to prolong the hearing, the French Prosecution feels that it is its duty to refrain from presenting this question again; but we remain respectfully at the disposal of the Tribunal in case, in the course of the trial, they feel they need further information on this question.

The presentation of the French Prosecution is concluded. I shall give the floor to Captain Sprecher of the American Delegation, who will make a statement on the responsibility of the Defendant Fritzsche.

CAPTAIN DREXEL A. SPRECHER (Assistant Trial Counsel for the United States): May it please the Tribunal, I notice that Dr. Fritz, the defendant’s attorney, is not here; and in view of the late hour, it would be agreeable if we hold it over until tomorrow.

THE PRESIDENT: It is 5 o’clock now, so we shall adjourn in any event now.

[The Tribunal adjourned until 23 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Wednesday, 23 January 1946

Morning Session

CAPT. SPRECHER: May it please the Tribunal, it is my responsibility and my privilege to present today the case on the individual responsibility of the Defendant Hans Fritzsche for Crimes against Peace, War Crimes, and Crimes against Humanity as they relate directly to the Common Plan or Conspiracy.

With the permission of the Tribunal, it is planned to make this presentation in three principal divisions:

First, a short listing of the various positions held by the Defendant Fritzsche in the Nazi State.

Second, a discussion of Fritzsche’s conspiratorial activities within the Propaganda Ministry from 1933 through the attack on the Soviet Union.

Third, a discussion of Fritzsche’s connection, as a Nazi propagandist, to the atrocities and the ruthless occupation policy which formed a part of the Common Plan or Conspiracy.

In listing Fritzsche’s positions, it is not intended at first to describe the functions of these positions. Later on, in describing some of Fritzsche’s conspiratorial acts, I shall take up a discussion of some of these positions which he held.

Fritzsche’s Party membership and his various positions in the propaganda apparatus of the Nazi State are shown by two affidavits by Fritzsche himself: Document Number 2976-PS, which is already in evidence as Exhibit USA-20; and Document Number 3469-PS, which I offer in evidence as Exhibit USA-721. Both of these affidavits have been put into the four working languages of this Tribunal.

Fritzsche became a member of the Nazi Party on the 1st of May 1933, and he continued to be a member until the collapse in 1945. Fritzsche began his services with the staff of the Reich Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, hereinafter referred to as the Propaganda Ministry, on the 1st of May 1933; and he remained within the Propaganda Ministry until the Nazi downfall.

Before the Nazis seized political power in Germany and beginning in September 1932, Fritzsche was head of the Wireless News Service (Drahtloser Dienst), an agency of the Reich Government at that time under the Defendant Von Papen. After the Wireless News Service was incorporated into the Propaganda Ministry of Dr. Goebbels in May 1933, Fritzsche continued as its head until the year 1938. Upon entering the Propaganda Ministry in May 1933, Fritzsche also became head of the news section of the Press Division of the Propaganda Ministry. He continued in this position until 1937. In the summer of 1938, Fritzsche was appointed deputy to one Alfred Ingemar Berndt, who was then head of the German Press Division.

The German Press Division, in the Indictment, is called the Home Press Division. Since “German Press Division” seems to be a more literal translation, we have called it the German Press Division throughout this presentation. It is sometimes otherwise known as the Domestic Press Division. We shall show later that this division was the major section of the Press Division of the Reich Cabinet.

Now in December 1938 Fritzsche succeeded Berndt as the head of the German Press Division. Between 1938 and November 1942 Fritzsche was promoted three times. He advanced in title from Superior Government Counsel to Ministerial Counsel, then to Ministerialdirigent, and finally to Ministerialdirektor.

In November 1942 Fritzsche was relieved of his position as head of the German Press Division by Dr. Goebbels and accepted from Dr. Goebbels a newly created position in the Propaganda Ministry, that of Plenipotentiary for the Political Organization of the Greater German Radio. At the same time he also became head of the Radio Division of the Propaganda Ministry. He held both these positions in radio until the Nazi downfall.

There are two allegations of the Indictment concerning Fritzsche’s positions for which we are unable to offer proof. These allegations appear at Page 34 of the English translation.

The first unsupported allegation states that Fritzsche was “Editor-in-Chief of the official German News Agency (Deutsches Nachrichtenbüro).” The second unsupported allegation states that Fritzsche was “head of the Radio Division of the Propaganda Department of the Nazi Party.” Fritzsche denies having held either of these positions, in his affidavit, and therefore these two allegations must fall for want of proof.

Before discussing the documentation of the case I wish, in passing, to state my appreciation for the assistance of Mr. Norbert Halpern, Mr. Alfred Booth, and Lieutenant Niebergall, who sits at my right, for their assistance in research, analysis, and translation.

The Tribunal will note the relative shortness of this document book. It has been marked as Document Book MM. It contains only 32 pages, which have been numbered consecutively in red pencil for your convenience. The shortness of the documentation on this particular case is possible only because of a long affidavit made by the Defendant Fritzsche, which was signed by him on the 7th of January 1946.

It seems appropriate to comment on this significant document before proceeding. It is before Your Honors as Document Number 3469-PS, beginning at document book Page 19. As I said, it has been translated into the four working languages of this proceeding.

This affidavit contains materials which have been extracted from interrogations of Fritzsche and many materials which Fritzsche volunteered to give himself, upon request made by me, through his Defense Counsel, Dr. Fritz. Some of the portions of the final affidavit were originally typed or handwritten by the Defendant Fritzsche himself during this Trial or during the holiday recess. All these materials were finally incorporated into one single affidavit.

This affidavit contains Fritzsche’s account of the events which led to his entering the Propaganda Ministry and his account of his later connections with that Ministry. Before Fritzsche made some of the statements in the affidavit concerning the role of propaganda in relation to important foreign political events, he was shown illustrative headlines and articles from the German press at that time, so that he could refresh his recollection and make more accurate statements.

It is believed that the Tribunal will desire to consider many portions of this affidavit independent of this presentation, along with the proof on the conspirators’ use of propaganda as a principal weapon in the conspiracy. Some of this proof, you will recall, was submitted by Major Wallis in the first days of this Trial in connection with Brief E, entitled “Propaganda, Censorship, and Supervision of the Cultural Activities,” and the corresponding document book, to which I call the Tribunal’s attention.

In the Fritzsche affidavit there are a number of statements which I would say were in the nature of self-serving declarations. With respect to these, the Prosecution requests only that the Tribunal consider them in the light of the whole conspiracy and the indisputable facts which appear throughout the Record. The Prosecution did not feel, either as a matter of expediency or of fairness, that it should request Fritzsche, through his defense lawyer, Dr. Fritz, to remove some of these self-serving declarations at this time and submit them later in connection with his defense.

Since I shall refer to this affidavit at numerous times throughout the presentation, perhaps the members of the Tribunal will wish to place a special marker in their document book.

By referring to Paragraphs 4 and 5 of the affidavit, the Tribunal will note that Fritzsche first became a successful journalist in the service of the Hugenberg Press, the most important chain of newspaper enterprises in pre-Nazi Germany. The Hugenberg concern owned papers of its own, but primarily it was important because it served newspapers which principally supported the so-called “national” parties of the Reich, including the NSDAP.

In Paragraph 5 of his affidavit Fritzsche relates that in September 1932, when the Defendant Von Papen was Reich Chancellor, he was made head of the Wireless News Service, replacing someone who was politically unbearable to the Papen regime. The Wireless News Service, I might say, was a government agency for spreading news by radio.

Fritzsche began making radio broadcasts at about this time with very great success, a success which Goebbels recognized and was later to exploit very efficiently on behalf of these Nazi conspirators.

The Nazis seized power on the 30th of January 1933. From Paragraph 10 of the Fritzsche affidavit we find that that very evening, the 30th of January 1933, two emissaries from Goebbels visited Fritzsche. One of them was Dressler-Andress, head of the Radio Division of the NSDAP; the other was an assistant of Dressler-Andress named Sadila-Mantau. These two emissaries notified Fritzsche that although Goebbels was angry with Fritzsche for writing a critical article concerning Hitler, still Goebbels recognized Fritzsche’s public success on the radio since the previous fall. They stated further that Goebbels desired to retain Fritzsche as head of the Wireless News Service on certain conditions: (1) That Fritzsche discharge all Jews; (2) that he discharge all other personnel who would not join the NSDAP; and (3) that he employ with the Wireless News Service the second Goebbels’ emissary, Sadila-Mantau.

Fritzsche refused all these conditions except the hiring of Sadila-Mantau. This was one of the first ostensible compromises after the seizure of power which Fritzsche made on his road to the Nazi camp.

Fritzsche continued to make radio broadcasts during this period in which he supported the National Socialist coalition government then still existing.

In early 1933 SA troops several times called at the Wireless News Service and Fritzsche prevented them, with some difficulty, from making news broadcasts.

In April 1933 Goebbels called the young Fritzsche to him for a personal audience. At Paragraph 9 of his affidavit, Document Number 3469-PS, Fritzsche has volunteered the following concerning his prior relationships with Dr. Goebbels:

“I was acquainted with Dr. Goebbels since 1928. Apparently he had taken a liking to me, besides the fact that in my press activities I had always treated the National Socialists in a friendly way until 1931.

“Already before 1933 Goebbels, who was the editor of The Attack (Der Angriff), Nazi newspaper, had frequently made flattering remarks about the form and content of my writings, which I did as contributor of many ‘national’ newspapers and periodicals, among which were also some of more reactionary character.”

At the first Goebbels-Fritzsche discussion in early April 1933, Goebbels informed Fritzsche of his decision to place the Wireless News Service within the Propaganda Ministry as of 1 May 1933. He suggested that Fritzsche make certain rearrangements in the personnel which would remove Jews and other persons who did not support the NSDAP. Fritzsche debated with Goebbels concerning some of these steps. It must be said that during this period Fritzsche made some effort to place Jews in other jobs.

In a second conference with Goebbels, shortly thereafter, Fritzsche informed Goebbels about the steps he had taken in reorganizing the Wireless News Service. Goebbels thereupon informed Fritzsche that he would like to have him reorganize and modernize the entire news services of Germany within the control of the Propaganda Ministry.

It will be recalled by the Tribunal that on the 17th of March 1933, approximately two months before this time, the Propaganda Ministry had been formed by decree, 1933 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part I, Page 104, our Document Number 2029-PS.

Fritzsche was intrigued by the Goebbels offer. He proceeded to conclude the Goebbels-inspired reorganization of the Wireless News Service; and on the 1st of May 1933, together with the remaining members of his staff, he joined the Propaganda Ministry. On this same day he joined the NSDAP and took the customary oath of unconditional loyalty to the Führer. From this time on, whatever reservations Fritzsche may have had, either then or later, to the course of events under the Nazis, Fritzsche was completely within the Nazi camp. For the next 13 years he assisted in creating and in using the principal propaganda devices which the conspirators employed with such telling effect in each of the principal phases of this conspiracy.

From 1933 until 1942 Fritzsche held one or more positions within the German Press Division. For 4 years indeed he headed this Division, during those crucial years 1938 to 1942. That covers the period when the Nazis undertook actual military invasions of neighboring countries. It is, therefore, believed appropriate to spell out in some detail, before this Tribunal, the functions of this German Press Division. These functions will show the important and unique position of the German Press Division as an instrument of the Nazi conspirators not only in dominating the minds and the psychology of Germans through the German Press Division and through the radio but also as an instrument of foreign policy and psychological warfare against other nations.

The already broad jurisdiction of the Propaganda Ministry was extended by a Hitler decree of the 30th of June 1933, found in 1933 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part I, Page 449. From that decree I wish to quote only one sentence. It is found in Document 2030-PS, your document book Page 3:

“The Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda is competent for all problems concerning the mental moulding of the nation, the propaganda for the State, for culture and economy, and the enlightenment at home and abroad about these questions. Furthermore, he is in charge of the administration of all institutions serving these purposes.”

It is important to underline the stated propaganda objective of “enlightenment at home and abroad.”

For a clear exposition of the general functions of the German Press Division of the Propaganda Ministry, the Tribunal is referred to Document Number 2434-PS, document book Page 5. It is offered in evidence as Exhibit USA-722. This document is an appropriate excerpt from a book by Georg Wilhelm Müller, a Ministerial Director in the Propaganda Ministry, of which the Tribunal is asked to take judicial notice.

Fritzsche’s affidavit, Paragraphs 14, 15, and 16, beginning at Page 22 of your document book, contains an exposition of the functions of the German Press Division, a description which confirms and adds to the exposition in Müller’s book. Concerning the German Press Division, Fritzsche’s affidavit states:

“During the whole period from 1933 to 1945 it was the task of the German Press Division to supervise the entire domestic press and to provide it with directives by which this division became an efficient instrument in the hands of the German State leadership. More than 2,300 German daily newspapers were subject to control.

“The aim of this supervision and control, in the first years following 1933, was to change basically the conditions existing in the press before the seizure of power. That meant the coordination into the New Order of those newspapers and periodicals which had been serving capitalistic individual interests or party politics. While the administrative functions wherever possible were exercised by the professional associations and the Reich Press Chamber, the political direction of the German press was entrusted to the German Press Division.

“The head of the German Press Division held daily press conferences in the Ministry for the representatives of all German newspapers. Thereby all instructions were given to the representatives of the press. These instructions were transmitted daily, almost without exception and mostly by telephone from headquarters by Dr. Otto Dietrich, Reich Press Chief, in a set text, the so-called ‘Daily Parole of the Reich Press Chief.’ Before the formulation of this text the head of the German Press Division submitted to him, Dietrich, the foremost press wishes expressed by Dr. Goebbels and by other ministries. This was the case especially with the wishes of the Foreign Office about which Dr. Dietrich always wanted to make decisions personally or through his representatives at headquarters, Helmut Sündermann and chief editor Lorenz.

“The actual interpretation of the direction in detail was thus left entirely to the individual work of the various editors. Therefore, it is by no means true that the newspapers and periodicals were a monopoly of the German Press Division or that essays and leading articles had to be submitted by them to the Ministry. Even in war times this happened in exceptional cases only. The less important newspapers and periodicals which were not represented at the daily press conferences received their information in a different way—by providing them either with ready-made articles and reports, or by confidential printed instruction. The publications of all other official agencies were directed and coordinated likewise by the German Press Division.

“To enable the periodicals to get acquainted with the daily political problems of newspapers and to discuss these problems in greater detail, the Informationskorrespondenz was issued especially for periodicals. Later on it was taken over by the Periodical Press Division. The German Press Division likewise was in charge of pictorial reporting insofar as it directed the employment of pictorial reporters at important events.

“In this way, and conditioned upon the prevailing political situation, the entire German press was, by the German Press Division, made a permanent instrument of the Propaganda Ministry. Thereby, the entire German Press was subordinate to the political aims of the government. This was exemplified by the timely limitation and the emphatic presentation of such press polemics as appeared to be most useful, as shown for instance in the following themes: The class struggle of the system era; the Leadership Principle and the authoritarian state; the party and interest politics of the system era; the Jewish problem; the conspiracy of world-Jewry; the Bolshevistic danger; the plutocratic democracy abroad; the race problem generally; the church; the economic misery abroad; the foreign policy; the living space (Lebensraum).”

This description of Fritzsche establishes clearly and in his own words that the German Press Division was the instrument for subordinating the entire German press to the political aims of the government.

We now pass to Fritzsche’s first activities on behalf of the conspirators within the German Press Division. It is appropriate to read again from his affidavit, Paragraph 17, your document book Page 23. Fritzsche begins by describing a conference with Goebbels in late April or early May 1933:

“At this time Dr. Goebbels suggested to me, in my capacity as the expert on news technique, the establishment and direction of a section ‘News’ within the Press Division of his Ministry, in order to thoroughly organize and modernize the German news agencies. In carrying out the task assigned to me by Dr. Goebbels my field covered the entire news service for the German press and the radio in accordance with the directions given by the Propaganda Ministry, excepting at first the DNB”—German News Agency.

An obvious reason why the DNB was excepted from Fritzsche’s field at this time is that the DNB did not come into existence until the year 1934 as we shall later see. Later on, in Paragraph 17 of the Fritzsche affidavit, the Tribunal will note the tremendous funds put at the disposal of Fritzsche in building up the Nazi news services. Altogether the German news agencies received a 10-fold increase in their budget from the Reich, an increase from 400,000 to 4 million marks. Fritzsche himself selected and employed the chief editor for the Transocean News Agency and also for the Europa Press. Fritzsche states that some of the “directions of the Propaganda Ministry which I had to follow were,” and then skipping, “. . . increase of German news copy abroad at any cost,” and then skipping again, “. . . spreading of favorable news on the internal construction and peaceful intentions of the National Socialist system.”

About the summer of 1934 the Defendant Funk, then Reich Press Chief, achieved the fusion of the two most important domestic news agencies, the Wolff Telegraph Agency and the Telegraph Union, and thus formed the official German news agency, ordinarily known as DNB. It has already been pointed out to the Tribunal that the Indictment is in error in alleging that Fritzsche himself was Editor-in-Chief of the DNB. Fritzsche held no position whatsoever with the DNB at any time. However, as head of the news section of the German Press Division, Fritzsche’s duties gave him official jurisdiction over the DNB, which was the official domestic news agency of the German Reich after 1934. In the last part of Paragraph 17 of this affidavit, Fritzsche states that he coordinated the work of the various foreign news agencies “at home and within European and overseas foreign countries with one another and in relationship to DNB.”

The Wireless News Service was headed by Fritzsche from 1932 to 1937. After January 1933, the Wireless News Service was the official instrument of the Nazi Government in spreading news over the radio. During the same time that Fritzsche headed the Wireless News Service, he personally made radio broadcasts to the German people. These broadcasts were naturally subject to the controls of the Propaganda Ministry and reflected its purposes. The influence of Fritzsche’s broadcasts upon the German people, during this period of consolidation of control by the Nazi conspirators, is all the more important since Fritzsche was concurrently head of the Wireless News Services, which controlled for the government the spreading of all news by radio.

It is by now well known to the world that the Nazi conspirators attempted to be, and often were, very adept in psychological warfare. Before each major aggression, with some few exceptions based on the strategy of expediency, they initiated a press campaign calculated to weaken their victims and to prepare the German people psychologically for the impending Nazi madness. They used the press after their earlier conquests as a means for further influencing foreign politics and in maneuvering for the next following aggression.

By the time of the occupation of the Sudetenland on the 1st of October 1938, Fritzsche had become deputy head of the entire German Press Division. Fritzsche states that the role of German propaganda before the Munich Agreement on the Sudetenland was directed by his immediate chief, Berndt, then head of the German Press Division. In Paragraph 27 of the Fritzsche affidavit, Page 26 of your document book, Fritzsche describes this propaganda which was directed by Berndt. Speaking of Berndt, Fritzsche states:

“He exaggerated minor events very strongly, sometimes used old episodes as new—and there even came complaints from the Sudetenland itself that some of the news reported by the German press was untrustworthy. As a matter of fact, after the great foreign political success at Munich in September 1938, there arose a noticeable crisis in the confidence of the German people in the trustworthiness of its press. This was one reason for the recalling of Berndt, in December 1938 after the conclusion of the Sudeten action, and for my appointment as head of the German Press Division. Beyond this, Berndt, by his admittedly successful but still primitive military-like orders to the German press, had lost the confidence of the German editors.”

Now, what happened at this time? Fritzsche was made head of the German Press Division in place of Berndt. Between December 1938 and 1942, Fritzsche, as head of the German Press Division, personally gave to the representatives of the principal German newspapers the “daily parole of the Reich Press Chief.” During this history-making period he was the principal conspirator directly concerned with the manipulations of the press. The first important foreign aggression after Fritzsche became head of the German Press Division was the incorporation of Bohemia and Moravia. In Paragraph 28 of the affidavit, your document book, Page 26, Fritzsche gives his account of the propaganda action surrounding the incorporation of Bohemia and Moravia as follows:

“The action for the incorporation of Bohemia and Moravia, which took place on 15 March 1939, while I was head of the German Press Division, was not prepared for such a long period as the Sudeten action. According to my memory it was in February that I received the order from the Reich Press Chief, Dr. Dietrich, and repeated requests by the envoy Paul Schmidt of the Foreign Office, to draw the attention of the press to the aspirations of Slovakia for independence and to the continued anti-German coalition politics of the Prague Government. I did this. The daily paroles of the Reich Press Chief and the press conference minutes at that time show the wording of the pertinent instructions. The following were the typical headlines of leading newspapers and the conspicuous leading articles of the German daily press at that time: (1) The terrorizing of Germans within the Czech territory by arrest, shooting at Germans by the state police, destruction and damaging of German homes by Czech mobs; (2) the concentration of Czech forces on the Sudeten frontier; (3) the kidnapping, deportation, and persecution of Slovakian minorities by the Czechs, (4) the Czechs must get out of Slovakia; (5) secret meetings of Red functionaries in Prague.

“Some few days before the visit of Hacha, I received the instruction to publish in the press very conspicuously the incoming news on the unrest in Czechoslovakia. Such information I received only partly from the German News Agency DNB but mostly from the Press Division of the Foreign Office and some from big newspapers with their own news services. Among the newspapers offering information was, above all, the Völkischer Beobachter which, as I learned later on, received its information from the SS Standartenführer Gunter D’Alquen, who was at that time at Bratislava. I had forbidden all news agencies and newspapers to issue news on unrest in Czechoslovakia until I had seen it. I wanted to avoid a repetition of the very annoying accompaniments of the Sudeten action propaganda, and I did not want to suffer a loss of prestige caused by untrue news. Thus, all news checked by me was admittedly full of tendency but not invented. Following the visit of Hacha in Berlin and after the beginning of the invasion of the German Army, which took place on 15 March 1939, the German press had enough material for describing these events. Historically and politically the event was justified with the indication that the declaration of independence of Slovakia had required an interference and that Hacha with his signature had avoided a war and had reinstated a thousand-year-old union between Bohemia and the Reich.”

The propaganda campaign of the press preceding the invasion of Poland on the 1st of September 1939—and thus the propaganda action just preceding the precipitation of World War II—bears again the handiwork of Fritzsche and his German Press Division. In Paragraph 30 of Fritzsche’s affidavit, document book Page 27, Fritzsche speaks of the conspirators’ treatment of this episode as follows:

“Very complicated and varying was the press and propagandists treatment in the case of Poland. Under the influence of the German-Polish Agreement, the German press was for many years forbidden, on principle, to publish anything on the situation of the German minority in Poland. This was still the case when in the spring of 1939 the German press was asked to become somewhat more active as to the problem of Danzig. Also when the first Polish-English conversations took place and the German press was advised to use a sharper tone against Poland, the question of the German minority still remained in the background. At first during the summer this problem was picked up again and created immediately a noticeable sharpening of the situation. Each larger German newspaper had for some time quite an abundance of material on complaints and grievances of the Germans in Poland without the editors having had a chance to use this material. The German papers, from the time of the minority discussions at Geneva, still had correspondents or free collaborators in Katowice, Bydgoszcz, Posen, Toruń, et cetera. Their material now came forth with a bound. Concerning this, the leading German newspapers brought but in accordance with directions given for the so-called daily paroles the following articles, in conspicuous setting: (1) Cruelty and terror against racial Germans and the extermination of racial Germans in Poland; (2) Construction of field works by thousands of racial German men and women in Poland; (3) Poland, land of servitude and disorder; the desertion of Polish soldiers; the increased inflation in Poland; (4) provocation of frontier clashes upon direction of the Polish Government; the Polish aspirations for conquest; (5) persecution of Czechs and Ukrainians by Poland. The Polish press retorted hotly.”

The press campaign preceding the invasion of Yugoslavia followed the conventional pattern. You will find the customary defamations, the lies, the incitement and the threats, and the usual attempt to divide and to weaken the victim. Paragraph 32 of the Fritzsche affidavit, your document book Page 28, outlines this propaganda action as follows:

“During the period immediately preceding the invasion of Yugoslavia, on the 6th of April 1941, the German press emphasized by headlines and leading articles the following boldly made up announcements: (1) The systematic persecution of racial Germans in Yugoslavia including the burning down of German villages by Serbian soldiers and the confining of racial Germans in concentration camps, as well as the physical mishandling of German-speaking persons; (2) the arming of Serbian bandits by the Serbian Government; (3) the indictment of Yugoslavia by the plutocrats against Germany; (4) growing anti-Serbian feeling in Croatia; (5) the chaotic situation of the economic and social conditions in Yugoslavia.”

Since Germany had a non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union and because these conspirators wanted the advantage of surprise, there was no special propaganda campaign immediately preceding the attack on the U.S.S.R. Fritzsche in Paragraph 33 of his affidavit discussed the propaganda line, however, for the justification of this aggressive war to the German people:

“During the night from the 21st to the 22d of June 1941, Ribbentrop called me in at about 5 o’clock in the morning for a conference in the Foreign Office at which representatives of the domestic and foreign press were present. Ribbentrop informed us that the war against the Soviet Union would start that same day and asked the German press to present the war against the Soviet Union as a preventive war for the defense of the fatherland, a war which was forced upon us by the imminent danger of an attack of the Soviet Union against Germany. The claim that this was a preventive war was later repeated by the newspapers which received their instructions from me during the usual daily parole of the Reich Press Chief. I myself have also given this presentation of the cause of the war in my regular broadcasts.”

Fritzsche, throughout his affidavit, constantly refers to his technical and expert assistance to the colossal apparatus of the Propaganda Ministry. In 1939 he apparently became dissatisfied with the efficiency of the existing facilities of the German Press Division in furnishing grist for the propaganda mill and for its intrigues. He established a new instrument for improving the effectiveness of Nazi propaganda. In Paragraph 19 of his affidavit, Page 24 of your document book, Fritzsche describes this new propaganda instrument as follows:

“About the summer of 1939 I established within the German Press Division a section called ‘Speed Service.’ ”

And then skipping and quoting again:

“. . . at the start it had the task of checking the correctness of news from foreign countries. Later on, about the fall of 1939, this section also worked on the compilation of material which was put at the disposal of the entire German press: For instance, dates from the British Colonial policy, political statements of the British Prime Minister in former times, descriptions of social distress in hostile countries, et cetera. Almost all German newspapers used such material as a basis for their polemics, whereby close concentration in the fighting front of the German press was gained. The title ‘Speed Service’ was chosen because materials for current comments were supplied with particular speed.”

Throughout this entire period preceding and including the launching of aggressive war, Fritzsche made regular radio broadcasts to the German people under the following titles: “Political Newspaper Review,” “Political and Radio Show,” and later “Hans Fritzsche Speaks.” His broadcasts naturally reflected the polemics and the control of his Ministry and thus of the Common Plan or Conspiracy.

We of the Prosecution contend that Fritzsche, one of the most eminent of Goebbels’ propaganda team, helped substantially to bathe the world in the blood bath of aggressive war.

With the Tribunal’s consent I will now pass to proof bearing on Fritzsche’s incitement of atrocities and his encouragement of a ruthless occupation policy. The results of propaganda as a weapon of the Nazi conspirators reach into every aspect of this conspiracy, including the abnormal and inhuman conduct involved in the atrocities and the ruthless exploitation of occupied countries. Most of the ordinary members of the German nation would never have participated in or tolerated the atrocities committed throughout Europe if they had not been conditioned and goaded to barbarous convictions and misconceptions by the constant grinding of the Nazi propaganda machine. Indeed, the propagandists who lent themselves to this evil mission of instigation and incitement are more guilty than the credulous and callous minions who headed the firing squads or operated the gas chambers, of which we have heard so much in this proceeding. For the very credulity and callousness of those minions was in large part due to the constant and evil propaganda of Fritzsche and his official associates.

With respect to Jews, the Department of Propaganda within the Propaganda Ministry had a special branch for the “Enlightenment of the German people and of the world as to the Jewish question, fighting with propagandistic weapons against enemies of the State and hostile ideologies.” This quotation is taken from a book written in 1940 by Ministerial Director Müller, entitled The Propaganda Ministry. It is found in Document Number 2434(a)-PS, your document book Page 10, offered in evidence as Exhibit USA-722. It is another excerpt from Ministerial Director Müller’s book and I merely ask that you take judicial notice of it for that one sentence that I have read.

Fritzsche took a particularly active part in this “enlightenment” concerning the Jewish question in his radio broadcasts. These broadcasts literally teemed with provocative libels against Jews, the only logical result of which was to inflame Germany to further atrocities against the helpless Jews who came within its physical power. Document Number 3064-PS contains a number of complete broadcasts by Fritzsche which were monitored by the British Broadcasting Corporation and translated by BBC officials. For the convenience of the Tribunal, I have had those excerpts upon which the Prosecution relies to show illustrative types of Fritzsche’s broadcasts mimeographed and made into one document, which I offer in evidence as Exhibit USA-723. Even the Defendant Streicher, the master Jew-baiter of all time, could scarcely outdo Fritzsche in some of his slanders against the Jews. All the excerpts in Document Number 3064-PS are from speeches by Fritzsche given on the radio between 1941 and 1945, which we have already proven was a period of intensified anti-Jewish measures. With the permission of the Tribunal, I would like to read some of these excerpts.

Page 14 of our document book, Item 1, from a broadcast of 18 December 1941—it is found on Page 2122 of the translations from BBC:

“The fate of Jewry in Europe has turned out to be as unpleasant as the Führer predicted it would be in the event of a European war. After the extension of the war instigated by Jews, this fate may also spread to the New World, for it can hardly be assumed that the nations of this New World will pardon the Jews for the misery of which the nations of the Old World did not absolve them.”

From a radio broadcast of 18 March 1941, found at Page 2032 of the BBC translations:

“But the crown of all wrongly-applied Rooseveltian logic is the sentence: ‘There never was a race and there never will be a race which can serve the rest of mankind as a master.’ Here, too, we can only applaud Mr. Roosevelt. It is precisely because there exists no race which can be the master of the rest of mankind, that we Germans have taken the liberty to break the domination of Jewry and of its capital in Germany, of Jewry which believed it had inherited the crown of secret world domination.”

In passing, I would merely like to note that it seems to us that that is not only applause for past acts concerning persecution of Jews but an announcement that more is coming and an encouragement of what was coming.

I would like to read another excerpt from the 9th of October 1941 broadcast, translated at Page 2101 of the BBC translation:

“We know very well that these German victories, unparalleled in history, have not yet stopped the source of hatred which for a long time has fed the warmongers and from which this war originated. The international Jewish-Democratic-Bolshevistic campaign of incitement against Germany still finds cover in this or that fox’s lair or rat hole. We have seen only too frequently how the defeats suffered by the warmongers only doubled their senseless and impotent fury.”

Another broadcast of the 8th January 1944—Your Honors, I have tried to pick out illustrative broadcasts from different periods here:

“It is revealed clearly once more that not a new system of government, not a young nationalism, and not a new and well-applied socialism brought about this war. The guilty ones are exclusively the Jews and the plutocrats. If discussion on the post-war problems brings this to light so clearly, we welcome it as a contribution for later discussions and also as a contribution to the fight we are waging now, for we refuse to believe that world history will entrust its future development to those powers which have brought about this war. This clique of Jews and plutocrats have invested their money in armaments and they had to see to it that they would get their interests and sinking funds; hence they unleashed this war.”

Concerning Jews, I had one last quotation from the year 1945. It is from a broadcast of the 13th of January 1945, found on Pages 2258 and 2259 of the BBC translations:

“If Jewry provided a link between such divergent elements as plutocracy and Bolshevism and if Jewry was first able to work successfully in the democratic countries in preparing this war against Germany, it has by now placed itself unreservedly on the side of Bolshevism which, with its entirely mistaken slogans of racial freedom against racial hatred, has created the very conditions the Jewish race requires in its struggle for domination, over other races.”

And then skipping a few lines in that quotation:

“Not the last result of German resistance on all the fronts, so unexpected to the enemy, is the fruition of a development which began in the pre-war years, that is, the process of subordinating British policy to far-reaching Jewish points of view. This development started long before this when Jewish emigrants from Germany commenced their warmongering against us from British and American soil.”

And then skipping several sentences and going to the last sentence on that page.

“This whole attempt, aiming at the establishment of Jewish world domination, was obviously made at a time when the national-racial consciousness had been too far awakened to promise such an aim success.”

Your Honors, we suggest that that is an invitation to further persecution of the Jews and, indeed, to their elimination.

Fritzsche also incited and encouraged ruthless measures against the peoples of the U.S.S.R. In his regular broadcasts Fritzsche’s incitements against the peoples of the U.S.S.R. were often linked to, and were certainly as inflammatory as, his slanders against the Jews. If these slanders were not so tragic in their relation to the murder of millions of people, they would be comical, indeed ludicrous. It is ironic that the propaganda libels against the peoples of the U.S.S.R. concerning atrocities actually described some of the many atrocities committed by the German invaders, as we now well know. The following quotations are again taken from the BBC intercepted broadcasts and their translations, beginning shortly after the invasion of the U.S.S.R. in June 1941. The first one is taken again from Page 16 of our document book. I will read only the last half of Item 7, beginning with the third paragraph:

“As can be sufficiently seen by letters reaching us from the front, from P.K. reporters”—and may I interrupt my quotation there to say that “P.K.” stands for “Propaganda Kompanie,” propaganda companies which were attached to the German Army wherever it went—“P.K. reporters and soldiers on leave, in this struggle in the East not one political system is pitted against another, not one philosophy is fighting another, but culture, civilization, and human dignity have stood up against the diabolical principle of a subhuman world.”

And then another quote in the next paragraph:

“It was only the Führer’s decision to strike in time that saved our homeland from the fate of being overrun by those subhuman creatures, and our men, women, and children from the unspeakable horror of becoming their prey.”

In the next broadcast I want to quote from, 10th of July 1941, in the first paragraph Fritzsche speaks of the inhuman deeds committed in areas controlled by the Soviet Union, and he states that one, upon seeing the evidence of those deeds committed, comes—and here I quote:

“. . . finally to make the holy resolve to lend one’s assistance in the final destruction of those who are capable of such dastardly acts.”

And then quoting again, the last paragraph:

“The Bolshevist agitators made no effort to deny that in towns, thousands, and in the villages, hundreds of corpses of men, women, and children have been found, who had been either killed or tortured to death. In spite of this Bolshevik agitators assert that this was not done by Soviet commissars but by German soldiers. But we know our German soldiers. No German women, fathers, or mothers require proofs that their husbands or their sons cannot have committed such atrocious acts.”

Evidence already in the Record, or shortly to be offered in this case by our Soviet colleagues, will prove that representatives of these Nazi conspirators did not hesitate to exterminate Soviet soldiers and civilians by scientific mass methods. These inciting remarks by Fritzsche made him an accomplice in these crimes because his labeling of the Soviet peoples as members of a “subhuman world” seeking to “exterminate” the German people and similar desperate talk helped, by these propaganda diatribes, to fashion the psychological atmosphere of utter and complete unreason and the hatred which instigated and made possible these atrocities in the East.

Although we cannot say that Fritzsche directed that 10,000 or 100,000 persons be exterminated, it is enough to pause on this question: Without these incitements of Fritzsche, how much harder it would have been for these conspirators to have effected the conditions which made possible the extermination of millions of people in the East.

THE PRESIDENT: Would that be a convenient time to break off?

[A recess was taken.]

CAPT. SPRECHER: Fritzsche encouraged, affirmed, and glorified the policy of the Nazi conspirators in ruthlessly exploiting the occupied countries. Again I read an excerpt from his radio broadcast of the 9th of October 1941, found at Pages 2102 and 2103 of the BBC translation. I would like to cut it down, but it is one of those long German sentences that just cannot be broken down:

“Today we can only say: Blitzkrieg or not, this German thunderstorm has cleansed the atmosphere of Europe. Certainly it is quite true that the dangers threatening us were eliminated one after the other with lightning speed but in these lightning blows which shattered England’s allies on the continent, we saw not a proof of the weakness, but a proof of the strength and superiority of the Führer’s gift as a statesman and military leader; a proof of the German peoples’ might; we saw the proof that no opponent can rival the courage, discipline, and readiness for sacrifice displayed by the German soldier, and we are particularly grateful for these lightning, incomparable victories, because—as the Führer emphasized last Friday—they give us the possibility of embarking on the organization of Europe and on the lifting of the treasures”—I would like to repeat that—“lifting of the treasures of this old continent, already now in the middle of war, without its being necessary for millions and millions of German soldiers to be on guard, fighting day and night along this or that threatened frontier; and the possibilities of this continent are so rich that they suffice to supply all needs in peace or war.”

Concerning the exploitation of foreign countries, Fritzsche states himself, at Paragraph 39 of his affidavit:

“The utilization of the productive capacity of the occupied countries for the strengthening of the German war potential, I have openly and with praise pointed out, all the more so as the competent authorities put at my disposal much material, especially on the voluntary placement of manpower.”

Fritzsche was a credulous propagandist indeed if he gloriously praised the exploitation policy of the German Reich, chiefly or especially because the competent authorities gave him a sales talk on the voluntary placement of manpower.

I come now to Fritzsche as the high commander of the entire German radio system. Fritzsche continued as the head of the German Press Division until after the conspirators had begun the last of their aggressions. In November 1942, Goebbels created a new position, that of Plenipotentiary for the Political Organization of the Greater German Radio, a position which Fritzsche was the first and the last to hold. In Paragraph 36, Document Number 3469-PS, the Fritzsche affidavit, Fritzsche narrates how the entire German radio and television system was organized under his supervision. That is at Page 29 of your document book. He states:

“My office practically represented the high command of German radio.”

As special Plenipotentiary for the Political Organization of the Greater German Radio, Fritzsche issued orders to all the Reich propaganda offices by teletype. These were used first in conforming the entire radio apparatus of Germany to the desires of the conspirators.

Goebbels customarily held an 11 o’clock conference with his closest collaborators within the Propaganda Ministry. When both Goebbels and his undersecretary, Dr. Naumann, were absent, Goebbels, after 1943, entrusted Fritzsche with the holding of this 11 o’clock press conference.

In Document Number 3255-PS the Court will find Goebbels’ praise of Fritzsche’s broadcasts. This praise was given in Goebbels’ introduction to a book by Fritzsche called, War to the War Mongers. I would like to offer the quotation in evidence as Exhibit Number USA-724, from the Rundfunk Archiv, at Page 18 of Your Honors’ document book. This is Goebbels speaking:

“Nobody knows better than I how much work is involved in those broadcasts, how many times they were dictated within the last minutes to find some minutes later a willing ear by the whole nation.”

So we have it from Goebbels himself that the entire German nation was prepared to lend willing ears to Fritzsche, after he had made his reputation on the radio.

The rumor passed that Fritzsche was “His Master’s Voice” (Die Stimme seines Herrn). This is certainly borne out by Fritzsche’s functions. When Fritzsche spoke on the radio it was indeed plain to the German people that they were listening to the high command of the conspirators in this field.

Fritzsche is not being presented by the Prosecution as the type of conspirator who signed decrees or as the type of conspirator who sat in the inner councils planning all of the over-all grand strategy of these conspirators. The function of propaganda is, for the most part, apart from the field of such planning. The function of a propaganda agency is somewhat more analogous to an advertising agency or public relations department, the job of which is to sell the product and to win the market for the enterprise in question. Here the enterprise, we submit, was the Nazi conspiracy. In a conspiracy to commit fraud, the gifted salesman of the conspiratorial group is quite as essential and quite as culpable as the master planners, even though he may not have contributed substantially to the formulation of all the basic strategy, but rather contributed to the artful execution of this strategy.

In this case the Prosecution most emphatically contends that propaganda was a weapon of tremendous importance to this conspiracy. We further contend that the leading propagandists were major accomplices in this conspiracy, and further, that Fritzsche was a major propagandist.

When Fritzsche entered the Propaganda Ministry, the most fabulous “lie factory” of all time, and thus attached himself to this conspiracy, he did this with a more open mind than most of these conspirators who had committed themselves at an earlier date, before the seizure of power. He was in a particularly strategic position to observe the frauds committed upon the German people and upon the world by these conspirators.

The Tribunal will recall that in 1933, before Fritzsche took his party oath of unconditional obedience and subservience to the Führer and thus abdicated his moral responsibility to these conspirators, he had observed at first-hand the operations of the storm troopers and the Nazi race pattern in action. When, notwithstanding this, Fritzsche undertook to bring the German news agencies in their entirety within fascist control, he learned from the inside, from Goebbels’ own lips, much of the cynical intrigue and many of the bold lies against opposition groups within and without Germany. He observed, for example, the opposition journalists, a profession to which he had previously been attached, being forced out of existence, crushed to the ground, either absorbed or eliminated. He continued to support the conspiracy. He learned from day to day the art of intrigue and quackery in the process of perverting the German nation, and he grew in prestige and influence as he practiced this art.

The Tribunal will also recall that Fritzsche had said that his predecessor Berndt fell from the leadership of the German Press Division partly because he overplayed his hand by the successful but blunt and overdone manipulation of the Sudetenland propaganda. Fritzsche stepped into the gap which had been caused by the loss of confidence of both the editors and the German people, and Fritzsche did his job well.

No doubt Fritzsche was not as blunt as the man he succeeded; but Fritzsche’s relative shrewdness and subtlety, his very ability to be more assuring and “to find,” as Goebbels said, “the willing ears of the whole nation,” these things made him the more useful accomplice of these conspirators.

Nazi Germany and its press went into the actual phase of war operations with Fritzsche at the head of the particular propaganda instrument controlling the German press and German news, whether by the press or by radio. In 1942 when Fritzsche transferred from the field of the press to the field of radio, he was not removed for bungling but only because Goebbels then needed him most in the field of radio. Fritzsche is not in the dock as a free journalist, but as an efficient, controlled Nazi propagandist, a propagandist who helped substantially to tighten the Nazi stranglehold over the German people, a propagandist who made the excesses of these conspirators more palatable to the consciences of the German people themselves, a propagandist who cynically proclaimed the barbarous racialism which is at the very heart of this conspiracy, a propagandist who coldly goaded humble Germans to blind fury against people they were told by him were subhuman and guilty of all the suffering of Germany, suffering which indeed these Nazis themselves, had invited.

In conclusion, I wish to say only this. Without the propaganda apparatus of the Nazi State it is clear that the world, including Germany, would not have suffered the catastrophe of these years; and it is because of Fritzsche’s able role on behalf of the Nazi conspirators and their deceitful and barbarous practices in connection with the conspiracy that he is called to account before this International Tribunal.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE (Deputy Chief Prosecutor for the United Kingdom): May it please the Tribunal, it was intended that the next presentation would be by Colonel Griffith-Jones in the case of the Defendant Hess. I understand that the Tribunal has in mind that it might be better if that were left for the moment; if so, Major Harcourt Barrington is prepared to make the presentation with regard to the Defendant Von Papen.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. We understood that the Defendant Hess’s counsel could not be present today, and therefore it was better to go on with one of the others.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: If your Lordship pleases, then Major Harcourt Barrington will deal with the presentation against the Defendant Von Papen.

MAJOR J. HARCOURT BARRINGTON (Junior Counsel for the United Kingdom): My Lord, I understand that the court interpreters have not got the proper papers and document books up here yet, but they can get them in a very few minutes. Would your Lordship prefer that I should go on or wait until they have got them?

THE PRESIDENT: Very well. Go on then.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: May it please the Tribunal, it is my duty to present the case against the Defendant Von Papen. Before I begin I would like to say that the documents in the document books are arranged numerically and not in the order of presentation, and that the English document books are paged in red chalk at the bottom of the page.

THE PRESIDENT: Does that mean that the French and the Soviet are not?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, we did not prepare French and Soviet document books.

THE PRESIDENT: Major Barrington, the French members of the Tribunal have no document books at all.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, there should be a German document book for the French member. I understand it is now being fetched. Should I wait until it arrives?

THE PRESIDENT: I think you can go on.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: The Defendant Papen is charged primarily with the guilt of conspiracy, and the proof of this charge of conspiracy will emerge automatically from the proof of the four allegations specified in Appendix A of the Indictment. These are as follows:

(1) He promoted the accession of the Nazi conspirators to power.

(2) He participated in the consolidation of their control over Germany.

(3) He promoted the preparations for war.

(4) He participated in the political planning and preparation of the Nazi conspirators for wars of aggression, et cetera.

Broadly speaking, the case against Von Papen covers the period from the 1st of June 1932 to the conclusion of the Anschluss in March 1938.

So far in this Trial, almost the only evidence specifically implicating Von Papen has been evidence in regard to his activities in Austria. This evidence need only be summarized now. But if the case against Von Papen rested on Austria alone, the Prosecution would be in the position of relying on a period during which the essence of his task was studied plausibility and in which his whole purpose was to clothe his operations with a cloak of sincerity and innocent respectability. It is therefore desirable to put the evidence already given in its true perspective by showing in addition the active and prominent part he played for the Nazis before he went to Austria.

Papen himself claims to have rejected many times Hitler’s request that he should actually join the Nazi Party. Until 1938 this may indeed have been true, for he was shrewd enough to see the advantage of maintaining, at least outwardly, his personal independence. It will be my object to show that, despite his facade of independence, Papen was an ardent member of this conspiracy and, in spite of warnings and rebuffs, was unable to resist its fascination.

In the submission of the Prosecution, the key to Von Papen’s activities is that, although perhaps not a typical Nazi, he was an unscrupulous political opportunist and ready to fall in with the Nazis when it suited him. He was not unpracticed in duplicity and viewed with an apparent indifference the contradictions and betrayals which his duplicity inevitably involved. One of his chief weapons was fraudulent assurance.

Before dealing with the specific charges, I will refer to Document 2902-PS, which is on Page 38 of the English document book, and I put it in as Exhibit GB-233. This is Von Papen’s own signed statement showing his appointments. It is not in chronological order, but I will read the relevant parts as they come. I need not read the whole of it. The Tribunal will note that this statement is written by Dr. Kubuschok, Counsel for Von Papen, although it is signed by Von Papen himself. Paragraph 1:

“Von Papen many times rejected Hitler’s request to join the NSDAP. Hitler simply sent him the Golden Party Badge. In my opinion, legally speaking, he did not thereby become a member of the Party.”

Interposing there, My Lord, the fact that he was officially regarded as having become a member in 1938 will be shown by a document which I shall refer to later.

Going on to Paragraph 2:

“From 1933 to 1945 Von Papen was a member of the Reichstag.”

Paragraph 3:

“Von Papen was Reich Chancellor from the 1st of June 1932 to the 17th of November 1932. He carried on the duties of Reich Chancellor until his successor took office—until the 2d of December 1932.”

Paragraph 4:

“On the 30th of January 1933 Von Papen was appointed Vice Chancellor. From the 30th of June 1934”—which was the date of the Blood Purge—“he ceased to exercise official duties. On that day he was placed under arrest. Immediately after his release on the 3rd of July 1934 he went to the Reich Chancellery to hand in his resignation to Hitler.”

The rest of that paragraph I need not read. It is an argument which concerns the authenticity or otherwise of his signature as it appears in the Reichsgesetzblatt to certain decrees in August 1934. I am prepared to agree with his contention that his signature on those decrees may not have been correct and may have been a mistake. He admits holding office only to the 3rd of July 1934.

He was, as the Tribunal will also remember, in virtue of being Reich Chancellor, a member of the Reich Cabinet.

Going on to Paragraph 5:

“On the 13th of November 1933, Von Papen became Plenipotentiary for the Saar. This office was terminated under the same circumstances described under Paragraph 4.”

The rest of the document I need not read. It concerns his appointments to Vienna and Ankara, which are matters of history. He was appointed Minister to Vienna on the 26th of July 1934, and recalled on the 4th of February 1938, and he was Ambassador in Ankara from April 1939 until August 1944.

The first allegation against the Defendant Von Papen is that he used his personal influence to promote the accession of the Nazi conspirators to power. From the outset Von Papen was well aware of the Nazi program and Nazi methods. There can be no question of his having encouraged the Nazis through ignorance of these facts. The official NSDAP program was open and notorious; it had been published in Mein Kampf for many years; it had been published and republished in the Yearbook of the NSDAP and elsewhere. The Nazis made no secret of their intention to make it a fundamental law of the State. This has been dealt with in full at an earlier stage of the Trial.

During 1932 Von Papen as Reich Chancellor was in a particularly good position to understand the Nazi purpose and methods; and in fact, he publicly acknowledged the Nazi menace. Take, for instance, his Münster speech on the 28th of August 1932. This is Document 3314-PS, on Page 49 of the English document book, and I now put it in as Exhibit GB-234, and I quote two extracts at the top of the page:

“The licentiousness emanating from the appeal of the leader of the National Socialist movement does not comply very well with his claims to governmental power. . . . I do not concede him the right to regard only the minority following his banner as the German nation and to treat all other fellow countrymen as free game.”

Take also his Munich speech of the 13th of October 1932. That is on Page 50 of the English document book, Document Number 3317-PS, which I now put in as Exhibit GB-235, and I will simply read the last extract on the page:

“In the interest of the entire nation, we decline the claim to power by parties which want to bind their followers body and soul and which want to identify their party or movement with the German nation.”

I do not rely on these random extracts to show anything more than that he had, in 1932, clearly addressed his mind to the inherent lawlessness of the Nazi philosophy. Nevertheless, in his letter to Hitler of the 13 of November 1932, which I shall quote more fully later, he wrote of the Nazi movement as, I quote:

“. . . so great a national movement, the merits of which for people and country I have always recognized in spite of necessary criticisms . . . .”

So variable and so seemingly contradictory were Von Papen’s acts and utterances regarding the Nazis that it is not possible to present the picture of Papen’s part in this infamous enterprise unless one first reviews the steps by which he entered upon it. It then becomes clear that he threw himself, if not wholeheartedly, yet with cool and deliberate calculation, into the Nazi conspiracy.

I shall enumerate some of the principal steps by which Papen fell in with the Nazi conspiracy.

As a result of his first personal contact with Hitler, Von Papen as Chancellor rescinded, on the 14th of June 1932, the decree passed on the 13th of April 1932 for the dissolution of the Nazi para-military organizations, the SA and the SS. He thereby rendered the greatest possible service to the Nazi Party, inasmuch as it relied upon its para-military organizations to beat the German people into submission. The decree rescinding the dissolution of the SA and the SS is shown in Document D-631, on Page 64 of the document book; and I now put it in as Exhibit GB-236. It is an extract from the Reichsgesetzblatt, which was an omnibus decree. The relevant passage is in Paragraph 20:

“This order comes into operation from the day of announcement. It takes the place of the Decree of the Reich President for the Safeguarding of the State Authority of . . . .”—the date should be the 13th of April 1932.

THE PRESIDENT: Which page of the document book is it?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: I am sorry, My Lord; it is Page 64. And the date shown there should not be the 3rd of May 1932, it should be the 13th of April 1932. That was the decree which had previously dissolved the Nazi para-military organizations under the Government of Chancellor Brüning. At the bottom of the page the Tribunal will see the relevant parts of the decree of the 13th of April reproduced. At the beginning of Paragraph 1 of that decree it said:

“All organizations of a military nature of the German National Socialist Labor Party will be dissolved with immediate effect, particularly the SA and the SS.”

This rescission by Von Papen was done in pursuance of a bargain made with Hitler which is mentioned in a book called Dates from the History of the NSDAP by Dr. Hans Volz, a book published with the authority of the NSDAP. It is already an exhibit, Exhibit USA-592. The extract I want to quote is on Page 59 of the document book, and it is Document Number 3463-PS. I quote an extract from Page 41 of this little book:

“28th of May”—that was in 1932, of course—“In view of the imminent fall of Brüning, at a meeting between the former Deputy of the Prussian Center Party, Franz Von Papen, and the Führer in Berlin (first personal contact in spring 1932); the Führer agrees that a Papen cabinet should be tolerated by the NSDAP, provided that the prohibitions imposed on the SA, uniforms, and demonstrations be lifted and the Reichstag dissolved.”

It is difficult to imagine a less astute opening gambit for a man who was about to become Chancellor than to reinstate this sinister organization which had been suppressed by his predecessor. This action emphasizes the characteristic duplicity and insincerity of his public condemnations of the Nazis which I quoted a few minutes ago.

Eighteen months later he publicly boasted that at the time of taking over the chancellorship he had advocated paving the way to power for what he called the “young fighting liberation movement.” That will be shown in Document 3375-PS, which I shall introduce in a few minutes.

Another important step was when, on the 20th of July 1932, he accomplished his famous coup d’état in Prussia which removed the Braun-Severing Prussian Government and united the ruling power of the Reich and Prussia in his own hands as Reichskommissar for Prussia. This is now a matter of history. It is mentioned in Document D-632, which I now introduce as Exhibit GB-237. It is on Page 65 of the document book. This document is, I think, a semi-official biography in a series of public men.

Papen regarded this step, his coup d’état in Prussia, as a first step in the policy later pursued by Hitler of coordinating the states with the Reich, which will be shown in Document 3357-PS, which I shall come to later.

The next step, if the Tribunal will look at Document D-632, on Page 65 of the document book, the last four or five lines at the bottom of the page:

“The Reichstag elections of the 31st of July, which were the result of Von Papen’s disbandment of the Reichstag on the 4th of June”—which was made in pursuance of the bargain that I mentioned a few minutes ago—“strengthened enormously the NSDAP, so that Von Papen offered to the leader of the now strongest party his participation in the government as Vice Chancellor. Adolf Hitler rejected this offer on the 13th of August.

“The new Reichstag, which assembled on the 30th of August, was disbanded by the 12th of September. The new elections brought about a considerable loss to the NSDAP, but did not strengthen the Government parties, so that Papen’s Government retired on the 17th of November 1932 after unsuccessful negotiations with the Party leaders.”

My Lord, I shall wish to quote a few more extracts from that biography, but as it is a mere catalogue of events, perhaps Your Lordship would allow me to return to it at the appropriate time.

So far as those negotiations mentioned just now in the biography concern Hitler, they involved an exchange of letters in which Von Papen wrote to Hitler on the 13th of November 1932. That letter is Document D-633, on Page 68 of the English document book, and I now put it in as Exhibit GB-238. I propose to read a part of this letter, because it shows the positive efforts made by Papen to ally himself with the Nazis, even in face of further rebuffs from Hitler. I read the third paragraph. I should tell the Tribunal that there is some underlining in the English translation of that paragraph which does not occur in the German text:

“A new situation has arisen through the elections of November the 6th, and at the same time a new opportunity for a consolidation of all nationalist elements. The Reich President has instructed me to find out by conversations with the leaders of the individual parties concerned whether and how far they are ready to support the carrying out of the political and economic program on which the Reich Government has embarked. Although the National Socialist press has been writing that it is a naive attempt for Reich Chancellor Von Papen to try to confer with personalities representing the nationalist concentration, and that there can only be one answer, ‘No negotiations with Papen,’ I would consider it neglecting my duties, and I would be unable to justify it to my own conscience, if I did not approach you in the spirit of the order given to me. I am quite aware from the papers that you are maintaining your demands to be entrusted with the Chancellor’s Office, and I am equally aware of the continued existence of the reasons for the decision of August the 13th. I need not assure you again that I myself do not claim any personal consideration at all. All the same, I am of the opinion that the leader of so great a national movement, whose merits for people and country I have always recognized in spite of necessary criticism, should not refuse to enter into discussions on the situation and the decisions required with the presently leading and responsible German statesman. We must attempt to forget the bitterness of the elections and to place the cause of the country which we are mutually serving above all other considerations.”

Hitler replied on 16 November 1932 in a long letter, laying down terms which were evidently unacceptable to Von Papen, since he resigned the next day and was succeeded by Von Schleicher. That document is D-634, put in as part of Exhibit GB-238 as it is part of the same correspondence. I need not read from the letter itself.

Then came the meetings between Papen and Hitler in January 1933, in the houses of Von Schröder and of Ribbentrop, culminating in Von Schleicher being succeeded by Hitler as Reich Chancellor on 30 January 1933. Referring back again to the biography on Page 66 of the document book, there is an account of the meeting at Schröder’s house, the second paragraph on the page:

“The meeting with Hitler, which took place in the beginning of January 1933, in the house of the banker Baron Von Schröder in Cologne, is due to his initiative”—that means, of course Papen’s initiative—“although Von Schröder was the mediator. Both Von Papen and Hitler later made public statements about this meeting (press of 6 January 1933). After the rapid downfall of Von Schleicher on the 28th of January 1933, the Hitler-Von Papen-Hugenberg-Seldte Cabinet was formed on the 30th of January 1933 as a government of national solidarity. In this cabinet Von Papen held the office of Vice Chancellor and Reich Commissioner for Prussia.”

The meetings at Ribbentrop’s house, at which Papen was also present, have been mentioned by Sir David Maxwell-Fyfe (Document D-472, which was Exhibit GB-130).

I now wish to introduce into evidence an affidavit by Von Schröder, but I understand that Dr. Kubuschok wishes to take an objection to this. Perhaps before Dr. Kubuschok takes his objection it might help if I said, quite openly, that Schröder is now in custody, and according to my information he is at Frankfurt; so that physically he undoubtedly could be called. Perhaps I might also say at this moment that there would be no objection from the Prosecution’s point of view to interrogatories being administered to Von Schröder on the subject matter of this affidavit.

DR. EGON KUBUSCHOK (Counsel for Defendant Von Papen): I object to the reading of the affidavit of Schröder. I know that in individual cases the Tribunal has permitted the reading of affidavits. This occurred under Article 19 of the Charter, which is based on the proposition that the Trial should be conducted as speedily as possible and that for this reason the Tribunal should order the rules of ordinary court procedure in that respect. Of decisive importance, therefore, is the speediness of the Trial. But in our case the reading of the affidavit cannot be approved for that reason.

Our case is quite analogous to the case that was decided on the 14th of December with regard to Kurt Von Schuschnigg’s affidavit. Schröder is in the vicinity. Schröder was apparently brought to the neighborhood of Nuremberg for the purposes of this Trial. The affidavit was taken down on 5 December. He could be brought here at any time. The reading of the affidavit would have the consequence that I would have to refer not only to him but also to several other witnesses, because Schröder describes a series of facts in his affidavit which in their entirety are not needed for the finding of a decision. However, once introduced into the Trial, they must also be discussed by the Defense in the pursuance of its duty.

The affidavit discusses internal political matters, using improper terms. For this reason misunderstandings would be brought into the Trial which could be obviated by the hearing of a witness I believe, therefore, that the oral testimony of a witness should be the only way in which Schröder’s testimony should be submitted to the Tribunal, since otherwise a large number of witnesses will have to be called along with the reading of Schröder’s affidavit and his personal interrogation.

THE PRESIDENT: Have you finished?


THE PRESIDENT: Do you wish to make any observation?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: Yes, I do, My Lord. The Tribunal has been asked to exclude this affidavit, using as a precedent the decision on Von Schuschnigg’s affidavit. I think I am correct in saying that Von Schuschnigg’s affidavit was excluded as an exception to the general rule on affidavits which the Tribunal laid down earlier the same day when Mr. Messersmith’s affidavit was accepted. Perhaps Your Lordship will allow me to read from the transcript the Tribunal’s decision on the affidavit of Messersmith.

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Messersmith was in Mexico, was he not?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: That is so, My Lord; yes.

THE PRESIDENT: So that the difference between him and Schuschnigg in that regard was very considerable.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: In that regard, but what I was going to say was this, My Lord: In ruling on Messersmith’s affidavit Your Lordship said:

“In view of those provisions”—that is Article 19 of the Charter—“the Tribunal holds that affidavits can be presented and that in the present case it is a proper course. The question of the probative value of the affidavit as compared with the witness who has been cross-examined would, of course, be considered by the Tribunal, and if at a later stage the Tribunal thinks the presence of a witness is of extreme importance, the matter can be reconsidered.”

And Your Lordship added:

“If the Defense wish to put interrogatories to the witness, they will be at liberty to do so.”

Now in the afternoon of that day, when Schuschnigg’s affidavit came up . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Which day was this?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: This was the 28th of November, My Lord. It is on Page 473 (Volume II, Page 352) of the transcript, the Messersmith affidavit; and Page 523 (Volume II, Page 384) is the Schuschnigg affidavit.

Now, when the objection was taken to the Schuschnigg affidavit, the objection was put in these words:

“Today when the resolution was announced in respect of the use to be made of the written affidavit of Mr. Messersmith, the Court was of the opinion that in a case of very great importance possibly it would take a different view of the matter.”—And then defense counsel went on to say—“As it is a case of such an important witness, the principle of direct evidence must be adhered to.”

THE PRESIDENT: Have you a reference to a subsequent occasion on which we heard Mr. Justice Jackson upon this subject, when Mr. Justice Jackson submitted to us that on the strict interpretation of Article 19 we were bound to admit any evidence which we deemed to have probative value?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, I haven’t got that reference.

THE PRESIDENT: Why don’t you call this witness?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: I say, quite frankly—and I was coming on to that—this witness is in a position of being an alleged co-conspirator, and I do not make any secret of the fact that for obvious reasons the Prosecution would not desire to call him as a witness, and I put this affidavit forward as an admission by a co-conspirator. I admit that it is not an admission made in pursuance of the conspiracy, but I submit that by technical rules of evidence, this affidavit may be accepted in evidence as an admission by a co-conspirator; and as I said before, there will be no objection to administering interrogatories on the subject matter of this affidavit, and indeed, the witness would be available to be called as a defense witness if required.

That is all I have to say on that, My Lord.

THE PRESIDENT: There would be no objection to bringing the witness here for the purpose of cross-examination upon the affidavit?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: I don’t think there could be any objection if it were confined to the subject matter of the affidavit. I would not like . . .

THE PRESIDENT: How could you object, for instance, to the defendant himself applying to call the witness?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: As I said, I don’t think there could be any objection to that, My Lord.

THE PRESIDENT: The result would be the same, wouldn’t it? If the witness were called for the purpose of cross-examination, then he could be asked other questions which were not arising out of the matter in the affidavit. If the defendant can call him as his own witness, there can be no objection to the cross-examination going outside the matter of the affidavit.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: Of course he couldn’t be cross-examined by the Prosecution in that event, My Lord.

THE PRESIDENT: You mean you would ask his questions in re-examination, but they would not take the form of cross-examination?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: That is what I mean, My Lord.

THE PRESIDENT: You mean that you would prefer that he should be called for the defendants rather than be cross-examined outside the subject matter of the affidavit?


THE PRESIDENT: Is there anything you wish to add or not?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: There is nothing I wish to add.

THE PRESIDENT: It is time for us to adjourn. We will consider the matter.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

DR. MARTIN HORN (Counsel for Defendant Von Ribbentrop): In the place of Dr. Von Rohrscheidt, counsel for Defendant Hess, I would like to make the following declaration.

Dr. Von Rohrscheidt has been the victim of an accident. He has broken his ankle. The Defendant Hess has asked me to notify the Tribunal that from now on until the end of the Trial, he desires to make use of his right under the Charter to defend himself. The reason that he wants to do that for the whole length of the Trial is to be found in the fact that due to his absence his counsel will not be informed of the proceedings of the Court.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will consider the oral application which has just been made to it on behalf of the Defendant Hess.

As to the objection to the affidavit of Von Schröder which was made this morning by counsel for the Defendant Von Papen, the Tribunal does not propose to lay down any general rule about the admission of affidavit evidence. But in the particular circumstances of this case, the Tribunal will admit the affidavit in question but will direct that if the affidavit is put in evidence, the man who made the affidavit, Von Schröder, must be presented, brought here immediately for cross-examination by the defendant’s counsel. When I say immediately I mean as soon as possible.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, I will not introduce this affidavit.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, Major Barrington.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, before coming on to that affidavit, I last read a passage from the biography about the meeting at Von Schröder’s house, and I ask the Tribunal to deduce from that extract from the biography that it was at that meeting that a discussion took place between Von Papen and Hitler, which led up to the government of Hitler in which Von Papen served as Vice Chancellor. So that now at the point the Defendant Von Papen was completely committed to going along with the Nazi Party, and with his eyes open and on his own initiative he had helped materially to bring them into power.

The second allegation against the Defendant Von Papen is that he participated in the consolidation of Nazi control over Germany.

In the first critical year and a half of the Nazi consolidation Von Papen, as Vice Chancellor, was second only to Hitler in the Cabinet which carried out the Nazi program.

The process of consolidating the Nazi control of Germany by legislation has been fully dealt with earlier in this Trial. The high position of Von Papen must have associated him closely with such legislation. In July 1934 Hitler expressly thanked him for all that he had done for the co-ordination of the government of the National Revolution. That will appear in Document 2799-PS. In fact, although I shall read from that document in a minute, the document has been introduced to the Court by Mr. Alderman.

Two important decrees may be mentioned specially, as actually bearing the signature of Von Papen. First, the decree relating to the formation of special courts, dated the 21st of March 1933, for the trial of all cases involving political matters. The Tribunal has already taken judicial notice of this decree. The reference to the transcript is Page 30 (Volume II, Page 197) of the 22d of November, afternoon session.

This decree was the first step in the Nazification of the German judiciary. In all political cases it abolished fundamental rights, including the right of appeal, which had previously characterized the administration of German criminal justice.

On the same date, the 21st of March 1933, Von Papen personally signed the amnesty decree liberating all persons who had committed murder or any other crime between the 30th of January and the 21st of March 1933 in the National Revolution of the German people. That document is 2059-PS, and is on Page 30 of the English document book. I read Section 1.

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t think you need read the decrees if you will summarize them.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: If Your Lordship pleases, I will ask you to take judicial notice of that decree.


MAJOR BARRINGTON: As a member of the Reich Cabinet, Von Papen was, in my submission, responsible for the legislation carried through even when the decrees did not actually bear his signature. But I shall mention as examples two categories of legislation in particular in order to show by reference to his own previous and contemporaneous statements that they were not matters of which he could say that as a respectable politician he took no interest in them.

First, the civil service. As a public servant himself, Von Papen must have had a hard but apparently successful struggle with his conscience when associating himself with the sweeping series of decrees for attaining Nazi control of the civil service. This has been dealt with on Page 30 (Volume II, Page 197) of the transcript of the 22d of November in the afternoon session, and Page 257 (Volume II, Page 207). In this connection I refer the Tribunal to Document 351-PS, which is on Page 1 of the document book. It is Exhibit USA-389, and it is the minutes of Hitler’s first Cabinet meeting on the 30th of January 1933. I read from the last paragraph of the minutes, on Page 5 of the document book in the middle of the paragraph:

“The Deputy of the Reich Chancellor and the Reich Commissioner for the State of Prussia suggested that the Reich Chancellor should refute, in an interview at the earliest opportunity, the rumors about inflation and the rumors about infringing the rights of civil servants.”

Even if this was not meant to suggest to Hitler the giving of a fraudulent assurance, at the best it emphasizes the indifference with which Von Papen later saw the civil servants betrayed.

Secondly, the decrees for the integration of the federal states with the Reich. These again have been dealt with earlier in the Trial, Page 29 (Volume II, Page 196) of the transcript of 22 November, afternoon session. The substantial effect of these decrees was to abolish the states and to put an end to federalism and any possible retarding influence which it might have upon the centralization of power in the Reich Cabinet. The importance of this step, as well as the role played by Papen, is reflected in the exchange of letters between Hindenburg, Von Papen—in his capacity as Reich Commissioner for Prussia—and Hitler, in connection with the recall of the Reich Commissioner and the appointment of Göring to the post of Prime Minister of Prussia. I refer to Document 3357-PS, which is on Page 52 of the English document book, and I now put it in as Exhibit GB-239.

In tendering his resignation on the 7th of April 1933, Von Papen wrote to Hitler, and I read from the document:

“With the draft of the law for the co-ordination of the states with the Reich, passed today by the Reich Chancellor, legislative work has begun which will be of historical significance for the political development of the German State. The step taken on 20 July 1932 by the Reich Government, which I headed at the time, with the aim of abolishing the dualism between the Reich and Prussia is now crowned by this new interlocking of the interests of the state of Prussia with those of the Reich. You, Herr Reich Chancellor, will now be, as once was Bismarck, in a position to co-ordinate in all points the policy of the greatest of German states with that of the Reich. Now that the new law affords you the possibility of appointing a Prussian Prime Minister, I beg you to inform the Reich President that I dutifully return to his hands my post of Reich Commissioner for Prussia.”

I would like to read also the letter which Hitler wrote to Hindenburg in transmitting this resignation. Hitler wrote:

“Vice Chancellor Von Papen has addressed a letter to me which I enclose for your information. Herr Von Papen has already informed me within the last few days that he has come to an agreement with Minister Göring to resign on his own volition, as soon as the unified conduct of the governmental affairs in the Reich and in Prussia would be assured by the new law on the co-ordination of policy in the Reich and the States.

“On the eve of the day when the new law on the institution of Reichsstatthalter was adopted, Herr Von Papen considered this aim as having been attained, and requested me to undertake the appointment of the Prussian Prime Minister, at the same time offering further collaboration in the Reich Government, by now lending full service.

“Herr Von Papen, in accepting the post of Commissioner for the Government of Prussia in these difficult times since 30 January, has rendered a very meritorious service to the realization of the idea of coordinating the policy in Reich and states. His collaboration in the Reich Cabinet, to which he is now lending all his energy, is infinitely valuable; my relationship to him is such a heartily friendly one, that I sincerely rejoice at the great help I shall thus receive.”

Yet it was only 5 weeks before this that on the 3rd of March 1933, Von Papen had warned the electorate at Stuttgart against abolishing federalism. I will now read from Document 3313-PS, which is on Page 48 of the English document book, and which I now introduce as Exhibit GB-240—about the middle of the third paragraph. This is an extract from Von Papen’s speech at Stuttgart. He said:

“Federalism will protect us from centralism, that organizational form which focuses all the living strength of a nation on one point. No nation is less fitted to be governed centrally than the German.”

Earlier, at the time of the elections in the autumn of 1932, Von Papen as Chancellor had visited Munich. The Frankfurter Zeitung of the 12th of October 1932 commented on his policy. I refer to Document 3318-PS on Page 51 of the English document book, which I introduce as Exhibit GB-241. The Frankfurter Zeitung commented:

“Von Papen claimed that it had been his great aim from the very beginning of his tenure in office to build a new Reich for, and with, the various states. The Reich Government is taking a definite federalist attitude. Its slogan is not a dreary centralism or uniformity.”

That was in October 1932. All that was now thrown overboard in deference to his new master.

I now come to the Jews. In March 1933 the entire Cabinet approved a systematic state policy of persecution of the Jews. This has already been described to the Tribunal. The reference to the transcript is Pages 1442 (Volume III, Page 525) and 2490 (Volume V, Page 93).

Only 4 days before the boycott was timed to begin “with all ferocity”—to borrow the words of Dr. Goebbels—Von Papen wrote a radiogram of reassurance to the Board of Trade for German-American Commerce in New York which had expressed its anxiety to the German Government about the situation. His assurance—which I now put in as Document D-635, and it will be Exhibit GB-242 on Page 73 of the English document book—his assurance was published in the New York Times on the 28th of March 1933, and it contained the following sentence which I read from about the middle of the page. This document is the last but one in the German document book:

“Reports circulated in America and received here with indignation about alleged tortures of political prisoners and mistreatment of Jews deserve strongest repudiation. Hundreds of thousands of Jews, irrespective of nationality, who have not taken part in political activities, are living here entirely unmolested.”

This is a characteristic . . .

DR. KUBUSCHOK: The article in the New York Times goes back to a telegram of the Defendant Von Papen, which is contained in the document book one page ahead. The English translation has a date of the 27th of March. This date is an error. The German text which I received shows that it is a question of a weekend letter, which, according to the figures on the German document, was sent on the 25th of March. This difference in time is of particular importance for the following reason:

In effect, on the 25th of March nothing was yet known concerning the Jewish boycott, which Goebbels then announced for the 1st of April. The Defendant Von Papen could, therefore, on the 25th of March, point to these then comparatively few smaller incidents as he does in the telegram. In any case, the conclusion of the indictment that the contents of the telegram were a lie thereby falls.

THE PRESIDENT: Major Barrington, have you the original of that?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: The original is here, My Lord; yes. It is quite correct that there are some figures at the top, which, though I had not recognized it, might indicate that it was dispatched on the 25th.

THE PRESIDENT: And when was the meeting of the Cabinet which approved the policy of persecution of the Jews?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: Well, My Lord, I can’t say. It was some time within the last few days of March, but it might have been on the 26th. I can have that checked up.


DR. KUBUSCHOK: May I clarify that matter by saying that the Cabinet meeting in which the Jewish question was discussed took place at a much later date and that in this Cabinet meeting Cabinet members, among others the Defendant Von Papen, condemned the Jewish boycott. I shall submit the minutes of the meeting as soon as my motion has been granted.

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t know what you mean by your motion being granted. Does Counsel for the Prosecution say whether he persists in his allegation or whether he withdraws it?

MAJOR BARRINGTON: I will say this. Subject to checking the date when the Cabinet meeting took place . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Well, you can do that at the adjournment and let us know in the morning.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: If Your Lordship pleases. At this point I will just say this: That it was, as the Tribunal has already heard, common knowledge at the time that the Nazi policy was anti-Jewish, and Jews were already in concentration camps, so I will leave it to the Tribunal to infer that at the time when that radiogram was sent, which I am prepared to accept as being the 25th of March, that Von Papen did know of this policy of boycotting.

I will go further now that I am on this point, and I will say that Von Papen was indeed himself a supporter of the anti-Jewish policy, and as evidence of this I will put in Document 2830-PS, which is on Page 37A of the document book, and which I now introduce as Exhibit GB-243.

This is a letter, My Lord, written by Von Papen from Vienna on the 12th of May 1936 to Hitler on the subject of the Freiheitsbund. Paragraph 4 of the English text is as follows:

“The following incident is interesting. The Czech Legation secretary Dohalsky has made to Mr. Staud, (leader of the Freiheitsbund) the offer to make available to the Freiheitsbund any desired amount from the Czech Government which he would need for the strengthening of his struggle against the Heimwehr. Sole condition is that the Freiheitsbund must guarantee to adopt an anti-German attitude. Mr. Staud has flatly refused this offer. This demonstrates how even in the enemy’s camp the new grouping of forces is already taken into account. From this the further necessity results for us to support this movement financially as heretofore, and mostly in reference to the continuation of its fight against Jewry.”

DR. KUBUSCHOK: I must point out here a difficulty which has apparently been caused by the translation. In the original German text the word “mit Bezug” is used in regard to the transmittal in the following way: “. . . referring to the continuation of its fight against Jewry.” This word “mit Bezug” means here that under this heading the money must be transmitted, although this was not the real purpose, for the Austrian Freiheitsbund (Freedom Union) was not an anti-Semitic movement but a legal trade union to which Chancellor Dollfuss also belonged. This expression “mit Bezug” means only that the transmittal of the money demanded a covering designation because it was not permissible to transmit money from abroad to a party recognized by the state for any party purposes, as is shown by the rejected offer of the Czechoslovaks. I only wanted to point out here that the words “in reference” perhaps give a wrong impression and should rather be translated “referring.” In any case, I should like to point out that this “in reference” was a kind of camouflage for the transmittal of the money.

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t know to which word you are referring, but as I understand it the only purpose of referring to this letter was to prove that in it Von Papen was suggesting that a certain organization should be financially assisted in its fight against Jewry. That is the only purpose of referring to the letter. I don’t know what you mean about some word being wrongly translated.

DR. KUBUSCHOK: That is exactly how the error originated. The money was not transmitted to fight Jewry for that was not at all the purpose of this Christian Trade Union in Austria, but a certain designation for the transmittal of the money had to be devised. So this continuation of its fight against Jewry was used. The purpose therefore was not the fight against Jewry but the elimination through financial support of another foreign influence, namely that of Czechoslovakia.

THE PRESIDENT: I should have thought myself that the point which might have been taken against the Prosecution was that the letter was dated nearly 3 years after the time with which you were then dealing.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: That is so, My Lord; it was not at the time of the previous one.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, the previous one was marked 1933, and this was 1936.

MAJOR BARRINGTON: Oh yes. I put it in, My Lord, only to show what Von Papen’s position was by then, at any rate. If Your Lordship has any doubt as to the translation I would suggest that it might now be translated by the interpreter. We have the German text, a photostat.

THE PRESIDENT: I think you can have it translated again tomorrow; if necessary, you can have it gone into again then.


I come now to the Catholic Church. The Nazi treatment of the Church has been fully dealt with by the United States Prosecution. In this particular field Von Papen, a prominent lay Catholic, helped to consolidate the Nazi position both at home and abroad as perhaps no one else could have done.

In dealing with the persecution of the Church, Colonel Wheeler read to the Tribunal Hitler’s assurance given to the Church on the 23rd of March 1933 in Hitler’s speech on the Enabling Act, an assurance which resulted in the well-known Fulda Declaration of the German bishops, also quoted by Colonel Wheeler. That was Document 3387-PS, which was Exhibit USA-566. This deceitful assurance of Hitler’s appears to have been made at the suggestion of Von Papen 8 days earlier at the Reich Cabinet meeting at which the Enabling Act was discussed, on the 15th of March 1933. I refer to Document 2962-PS, which is Exhibit USA-578, and it is on Page 40 of the English document book. I read from Page 44, that is at the bottom of Page 6 of the German text. The minutes say:

“The Deputy of the Reich Chancellor and Reich Commissioner for Prussia stated that it is of decisive importance to coordinate into the new state the masses standing behind the parties. The question of the incorporation of political Catholicism into the new state is of particular importance.”

That was a statement made by Von Papen at the meeting at which the Enabling Act was discussed prior to Hitler’s speech on the Enabling Act in which he gave his assurance to the Church.

On the 20th of July 1933 Papen signed the Reich Concordat negotiated by him with the Vatican. The Tribunal has already taken judicial notice of this as Document 3280(a)-PS. The signing of the Concordat, like Hitler’s Papen-inspired speech on the Enabling Act, was only an interlude in the church policy of the Nazi conspirators. Their policy of assurances was followed by a long series of violations which eventually resulted in Papal denunciation in the Encyclical “Mit brennender Sorge,” which is 3476-PS, Exhibit USA-567.

Papen maintains that his actions regarding the Church were sincere, and he has asserted during interrogations that it was Hitler who sabotaged the Concordat. If Von Papen really believed in the very solemn undertakings given by him on behalf of the Reich to the Vatican, I submit it is strange that he, himself a Catholic, should have continued to serve Hitler after all those violations and even after the Papal Encyclical itself. I will go further. I will say that Papen was himself involved in what was virtually, if not technically, a violation of the Concordat. The Tribunal will recollect the allocution of the Pope, dated the 2d of June 1945, which is Document 3268-PS, Exhibit USA-356, from which on Page 1647 (Volume IV, Page 64) of the transcript Colonel Storey read the Pope’s own summary of the Nazis’ bitter struggle against the Church. The very first item the Pope mentioned is the dissolution of Catholic organizations and if the Tribunal will look at Document 3376-PS on Page 56 of the English document book, which I now put in as Exhibit GB-244 and which is an extract from Das Archiv, they will see that in September 1934 Von Papen ordered—and I say “ordered” advisedly—the dissolution of the Union of Catholic Germans, of which he was at the time the leader. The text of Das Archiv reads as follows:

“The Reich Directorate of the Party announced the self-dissolution of the Union of Catholic Germans.

“Since the Reich Directorate of the Party, through its Department for Cultural Peace, administers directly and to an increasing extent all cultural problems including those concerning the relations of State and churches, the tasks at first delegated to the Union of Catholic Germans are now included in those of the Reich Directorate of the Party in the interest of a still closer co-ordination.

“Former Vice Chancellor Von Papen, up to now the leader of the Union of Catholic Germans, declared about the dissolution of this organization that it was done upon his suggestion, since the attitude of the National Socialist State toward the Christian and Catholic Church had been explained often and unequivocally by the Führer and Chancellor himself.”

I said that Von Papen “ordered” the dissolutions, although the announcement said it was self-dissolution on his suggestion; but I submit that such a suggestion from one in Papen’s position was equivalent to an order, since by that date it was common knowledge that the Nazis were dropping all pretense that rival organizations might be permitted to exist.

After 9 months’ service under Hitler, spent in consolidating the Nazi control, Von Papen was evidently well content with his choice. I refer to Document 3375-PS, Page 54 of the English document book, which I put in as Exhibit GB-245. On the 2d of November 1933, speaking at Essen from the same platform as Hitler and Gauleiter Terboven, in the course of the campaign for the Reichstag election and the referendum concerning Germany’s leaving the League of Nations, Von Papen declared:

“Ever since Providence called upon me to become the pioneer of national resurrection and the rebirth of our homeland, I have tried to support with all my strength the work of the National Socialist movement and its Führer; and just as I at the time of taking over the Chancellorship”—that was in 1932—“advocated paving the way to power for the young fighting liberation movement, just as I on January 30 was destined by a gracious fate to put the hands of our Chancellor and Führer into the hand of our beloved Field Marshal, so do I today again feel the obligation to say to the German people and all those who have kept confidence in me:

“The good Lord has blessed Germany by giving her in times of deep distress a leader who will lead her through all distresses and weaknesses, through all crises and moments of danger, with the sure instinct of the statesman into a happy future.”

And then the last sentence of the whole text on Page 55:

“Let us, in this hour, say to the Führer of the new Germany that we believe in him and his work.”

By this time the Cabinet, of which Von Papen was a member and to which he had given all his strength, had abolished the civil liberties, had sanctioned political murder committed in aid of Nazism’s seizure of power, had destroyed all rival political parties, had enacted the basic laws for abolition of the political influence of the federal states, had provided the legislative basis for purging the civil service and judiciary of anti-Nazi elements, and had embarked upon a State policy of persecution of the Jews.

Papen’s words are words of hollow mockery: “The good Lord has blessed Germany . . . .”

The third allegation against the Defendant Papen is that he promoted preparations for war. Knowing as he did the basic program of the Nazi Party, it is inconceivable that as Vice Chancellor for a year and a half he could have been dissociated from the conspirators’ warlike preparations; he, of whom Hitler wrote to Hindenburg on the 10th of April 1933 that, “His collaboration in the Reich Cabinet, to which he is now lending all his energy, is infinitely valuable.”

The fourth allegation against Papen is that he participated in the political planning and preparations for wars of aggression and wars in violation of international treaties. In Papen’s case this allegation is really the story of the Anschluss. His part in that was a preparation for wars of aggression in two senses: First, that the Anschluss was the necessary preliminary step to all the subsequent armed aggressions; second, that, even if it can be contended that the Anschluss was in fact achieved without aggression, it was planned in such a way that it would have been achieved by aggression if that had been necessary.

I need do no more than summarize Papen’s Austrian activities since the whole story of the Anschluss has been described to the Tribunal already, though with the Tribunal’s permission I would like to read again two short passages of a particularly personal nature regarding Papen. But before I deal with Papen’s activities in Austria there is one matter that I feel I ought not to omit to mention to the Tribunal.

On the 18th of June 1934 Papen made his remarkable speech at Marburg University. I do not propose to put it in evidence, nor is it in the document book, because it is a matter of history and in what I say I do not intend to commit myself in regard to the motives and consequences of his speech which are not free from mystery; but I will say this: That as far as concerns the subject matter of Papen’s Marburg speech, it was an outspoken criticism of the Nazis. One must imagine that the Nazis were furiously angry; and although he escaped death in the Blood Purge 12 days later, he was put under arrest for 3 days. Whether this arrest was originally intended to end in execution or whether it was to protect him from the purge as one too valuable to be lost, I do not now inquire. After his release from arrest he not unnaturally resigned the Vice Chancellorship. Now the question that arises—and this is why I mention the matter at this point—is why, after these barbaric events, did he ever go back into the service of the Nazis again? What an opportunity missed! If he had stopped then he might have saved the world much suffering. Suppose that Hitler’s own Vice Chancellor, just released from arrest, had defied the Nazis and told the world the truth. There might never have been a reoccupation of the Rhineland; there might never have been a war. But I must not speculate. The lamentable fact is that he slipped back, he succumbed again to the fascination of Hitler.

After the murder of Chancellor Dollfuss only 3 weeks later, on 25 July 1934, the situation was such as to call for the removal of the German Minister Rieth and for the prompt substitution of a man who was an enthusiast for the Anschluss with Germany, who could be tolerant of Nazi objectives and methods but who could lend an aura of respectability to official German representation in Vienna. This situation is described in the transcript at Pages 478 and 479 (Volume II, Pages 355, 356). Hitler’s reaction to the murder of Dollfuss was immediate. He chose his man as soon as he heard the news. The very next day, the 26th of July, he sent Von Papen a letter of appointment. This is on Page 37 of the English document book; it is document 2799-PS and it has already been judicially noticed by the Tribunal. Mr. Alderman read the letter, and I only wish to refer to the personal remarks toward the end. Hitler in this letter, after reciting his version of the Dollfuss affair and expressing his desire that Austrian-German relations should be brought again into normal and friendly channels, says in the third paragraph:

“For this reason I request you, dear Herr Von Papen, to take over this important task just because you have possessed and continue to possess my most complete and unlimited confidence ever since our collaboration in the Cabinet.”

And the last paragraph of the letter:

“Thanking you again today for all that you once have done for the co-ordination of the Government of the National Revolution and since then, together with us, for Germany . . . .”

THE PRESIDENT: This might be a good time to break off for 10 minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

MAJOR BARRINGTON: My Lord, I had just read from the letter of appointment as Minister in Vienna which Hitler sent to Von Papen on the 26th of July 1934. This letter, which, of course, was made public, naturally did not disclose the real intention of Von Papen’s appointment. The actual mission of Von Papen was frankly stated shortly after his arrival in Vienna in the course of a private conversation he had with the American Minister, Mr. Messersmith. I quote from Mr. Messersmith’s affidavit, which is Document 1760-PS, Exhibit USA-57, and it is on Page 22 of the document book, just about half way through the second paragraph. Mr. Messersmith said:

“When I did call on Von Papen in the German Legation, he greeted me with: ‘Now you are in my Legation and I can control the conversation.’ In the baldest and most cynical manner he then proceeded to tell me that all of southeastern Europe, to the borders of Turkey, was Germany’s natural hinterland and that he had been charged with the mission of facilitating German economic and political control over all this region for Germany. He blandly and directly said that getting control of Austria was to be the first step. He definitely stated that he was in Austria to undermine and weaken the Austrian Government and from Vienna to work towards the weakening of the governments in the other states to the south and southeast. He said that he intended to use his reputation as a good Catholic to gain influence with certain Austrians, such as Cardinal Innitzer, towards that end.”

Throughout the earlier period of his mission to Austria, Von Papen’s activity was characterized by the assiduous avoidance of any appearance of intervention. His true mission was re-affirmed with clarity several months after its commencement when he was instructed by Berlin that “during the next 2 years nothing can be undertaken which will give Germany external political difficulties,” and that every appearance of German intervention in Austrian affairs must be avoided; and Von Papen himself stated to Berger-Waldenegg, an Austrian Foreign Minister, “Yes, you have your French and English friends now, and you can have your independence a little longer.” All of that was told in detail by Mr. Alderman, again quoting from Mr. Messersmith’s affidavit, which is in the transcript at Pages 492 (Volume II, Page 354), 506, and 507 (Volume II, Pages 362-364).

Throughout this earlier period, the Nazi movement was gaining strength in Austria without openly admitted German intervention; and Germany needed more time to consolidate its diplomatic position. These reasons for German policy were frankly expressed by the German Foreign Minister Von Neurath in conversation with the American Ambassador to France; this was read into the transcript at Page 520 (Volume II, Page 381) by Mr. Alderman from Document L-150, Exhibit USA-65.

The Defendant Von Papen accordingly restricted his activities to the normal ambassadorial function of cultivating all respectable elements in Austria, and ingratiating himself in these circles. Despite his facade of strict nonintervention, Von Papen remained in contact with subversive elements in Austria. Thus in his report to Hitler, dated 17 May 1935, he advised concerning Austrian-Nazi strategy as proposed by Captain Leopold, leader of the illegal Austrian Nazis, the object of which was to trick Dr. Schuschnigg into establishing an Austrian coalition government with the Nazi Party. This is Document 2247-PS, Exhibit USA-64, and it is in the transcript at Pages 516 to 518 (Volume II, Pages 379, 380). It is on Page 34 of the English document book. I don’t want to read this letter again, but I would like to call the attention of the Tribunal to the first line of what appears as the second paragraph in the English text, where Von Papen, talking about this strategy of Captain Leopold, says, “I suggest that we take an active part in this game.”

I mention also in connection with the illegal organizations in Austria, Document 812-PS, Exhibit USA-61, which the Tribunal will remember was a report from Rainer to Bürckel, and which is dealt with in the transcript at Pages 498 to 505 (Volume II, Pages 367 to 376).

Eventually the agreement of 11 July 1936 between Germany and Austria was negotiated by Von Papen. This is already in evidence as Document TC-22, Exhibit GB-20. The public form of this agreement provides that while Austria in her policy should regard herself as a German state, yet Germany would recognize the full sovereignty of Austria and would not exercise direct or indirect influence on the inner political order of Austria. More interesting was the secret part of the agreement, revealed by Mr. Messersmith, which ensured the Nazis an influence in the Austrian Cabinet and participation in the political life of Austria. This has already been read into the transcript at Page 522 (Volume II, Page 383) by Mr. Alderman.

After the agreement the Defendant Von Papen continued to pursue his policy by maintaining contact with the illegal Nazis, by trying to influence appointments to strategic Cabinet positions, and by attempting to secure official recognition of Nazi front organizations. Reporting to Hitler on 1 September 1936, he summarized his program for normalizing Austrian-German relations in pursuance of the agreement of 11 July. This is Document 2246-PS, Exhibit USA-67, on Page 33 of the English document book.

The Tribunal will recall that he recommended “as a guiding principle, continued, patient, psychological manipulations with slowly intensified pressure directed at changing the regime.” Then he mentions his discussion with the illegal party and says that he is aiming at “cooperative representation of the movement in the Fatherland Front, but nevertheless is refraining from putting National Socialists in important positions for the time being.”

There is no need to go over again the events that led up to the meeting of Schuschnigg with Hitler in February 1938, which Von Papen arranged and which he attended, and to the final invasion of Austria in March 1938. It is enough if I quote from the biography again on Page 66 of the document book. It is about two-thirds of the way down the page:

“Following the events of March 1938, which caused Austria’s incorporation into the German Reich, Von Papen had the satisfaction of being present at the Führer’s side when the entry into Vienna took place, after the Führer, in recognition of his valuable collaboration, had on 14 February 1938, admitted him to the Party and had bestowed upon him the Golden Party Badge.”

And the biography continues:

“At first Von Papen retired to his estate Wallerfangen in the Saar district, but soon the Führer required his services again and on the 18 April 1939 appointed Von Papen German Ambassador in Ankara.”

Thus the fascination of serving Hitler triumphed once again, and this time it was at a date when the seizure of Czechoslovakia could have left no shadow of doubt in Papen’s mind that Hitler was determined to pursue his program of aggression.

One further quotation from the biography on Page 66, the last sentence of the last paragraph but one:

“After his return to the Reich”—that was in 1944—“Von Papen was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the War Merit Order with Swords.”

In conclusion, I draw the Tribunal’s attention again to the fulsome praises which Hitler publicly bestowed upon Von Papen for his services, especially in the earlier days. I have given two instances where Hitler said “His collaboration is infinitely valuable,” and again “You possess my most complete and unlimited confidence.”

Papen, the ex-Chancellor, the soldier, the respected Catholic, Papen the diplomat, Papen the man of breeding and culture—there was the man who could overcome the hostility and antipathy of those respectable elements who barred Hitler’s way. Papen was—to repeat the words of Sir Hartley Shawcross in his opening speech—“one of the men whose co-operation and support made the Nazi Government of Germany possible.”

That concludes my case. Sir David Maxwell-Fyfe will now follow with the case of Von Neurath.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: May it please the Tribunal, the presentation against the Defendant Von Neurath falls into five parts, and the first of these is concerned with the following positions and honors which he held.

He was a member of the Nazi Party from 30 January 1937 until 1945, and he was awarded the Golden Party Badge on 30 January 1937. He was general in the SS. He was personally appointed Gruppenführer by Hitler in September 1937 and promoted to Obergruppenführer on 21 June 1943. He was Reich Minister of Foreign Affairs under the Chancellorship of the Defendant Von Papen from 2 June 1932 and under the Chancellorship of Hitler from 30 January 1933 until he was replaced by the Defendant Von Ribbentrop on 4 February 1938. He was Reich Minister from 4 February 1938 until May 1945. He was President of the Secret Cabinet Council, to which he was appointed on 4 February 1938, and he was a member of the Reich Defense Council. He was appointed Reich Protector for Bohemia and Moravia from 18 March 1939 until he was replaced by the Defendant Frick on 25 August 1943.

He was awarded the Adler Order by Hitler at the time of his appointment as Reich Protector. The Defendant Ribbentrop was the only other German to receive this decoration.

If the Tribunal please, these facts are collected in Document 2973-PS, which is Exhibit USA-19, and in that document, which is signed by the defendant and his counsel, the defendant makes comments on certain of these matters with which I should like to deal.

He says that the award of the Golden Party Badge was made on 30 January 1937 against his will and without his being asked.

I point out that this defendant not only refrained from repudiating the allegedly unwanted honor, but after receiving it, attended meetings at which wars of aggression were planned, actively participated in the rape of Austria, and tyrannized Bohemia and Moravia.

The second point is that his appointment as Gruppenführer was also against his will and without his being asked. On that point, the Prosecution submits that the wearing of the uniform, the receipt of the further promotion to Obergruppenführer and the actions against Bohemia and Moravia must be considered when the defendant’s submission is examined.

He then says that his appointment as Foreign Minister was by Reich President Von Hindenburg. We submit we need not do more than draw attention to the personalities of the Defendant Von Papen and Hitler and to the fact that President Von Hindenburg died in 1934. This defendant continued as Foreign Minister until 1938.

He then says that he was an inactive Minister from the 4th of February 1938 until May 1945. At that moment attention is drawn to the activities which will be mentioned below and to the terrible evidence as to Bohemia and Moravia which will be forthcoming from our friend the Soviet prosecutor.

This defendant’s next point is that the Secret Cabinet Council never sat nor conferred.

I point out to the Tribunal that that was described as a select committee of the Cabinet for the deliberation of foreign affairs; and the Tribunal will find that description in Document 1774-PS, which I now put in as Exhibit GB-246. This is an extract from a book by a well-known author, and on Page 2 of the document book, the first page of that document, in about the seventh line from the bottom of the page, they will see that among the bureaus subordinated to the Führer for direct counsel and assistance, number four is the Secret Cabinet Council; President: Reich Minister Baron Von Neurath.

And if the Tribunal will be kind enough to turn over to Page 3, about ten lines from the top, they will see the paragraph beginning:

“A Secret Cabinet Council to advise the Führer in the basic problems of foreign policy has been created by the decree of 4 February 1938”—and a reference is given.

“This Secret Cabinet Council is under the direction of Reich Minister Von Neurath, and includes the Foreign Minister, the Air Minister, the Deputy of the Führer, the Propaganda Minister, the Chief of the Reich Chancellery, the Commanders-in-Chief of the Army and Navy and the Chief of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces. The Secret Cabinet council constitutes a closer staff of collaborators of the Führer which consists exclusively of members of the Government of the Reich; strictly speaking it represents a select committee of the Reich Government for the deliberation on foreign affairs.”

In order to have the formal composition of the body, that is shown in Document 2031-PS, which is Exhibit GB-217. I believe that has been put in. I need not read it again.

The next point that the defendant makes as to his offices is that he was not a member of the Reich Defense Council.

If I may very shortly take that point by stages, I remind the Tribunal that the Reich Defense Council was set up soon after Hitler’s accession to power on 4 April 1933; and the Tribunal will find a note of that point in Document 2261-PS, Exhibit USA-24; and they will find that on the top of Page 12 of the document book there is a reference to the date of the establishment of the Reich Defense Council.

The Reich Defense Council is also dealt with in Document 2986-PS, Exhibit USA-409, which is the affidavit of the Defendant Frick, which the Tribunal will find on Page 14. In the middle of that short affidavit, Defendant Frick says:

“We were also members of the Reich Defense Council which was supposed to plan preparations in case of war which later on were published by the Ministerial Council for the Defense of the Reich.”

Now, that the membership of this Council included the Minister for Foreign Affairs, who was then the Defendant Von Neurath, is shown by Document EC-177, Exhibit USA-390. If the Tribunal will turn to Page 16 of the document book, they will find that document and, at the foot of the page, the composition of the Reich Defense Council, the permanent members including the Minister for Foreign Affairs. That document is dated “Berlin, 22 May 1933” which was during this defendant’s tenure of that office. That is the first stage.

The functioning of this council, with a representative of this defendant’s department, Von Bülow, present, is shown by the minutes of the 12th meeting on 14 May 1936. That is Document EC-407, which I put in as Exhibit GB-247. The Tribunal will find at Page 21 that the minutes are for the 14th of May 1936, and the actual reference to an intervention of Von Bülow is in the middle of Page 22.

Then, the next period was after the secret law of 4 September 1938. This defendant was, under the terms of that law, a member of the Reich Defense Council by virtue of his office as president of the Secret Cabinet Council. That is shown by the Document 2194-PS, Exhibit USA-36, which the Tribunal will find at Page 24, and if you will look at Page 24, you will see that the actual copy which was put in evidence was enclosed in a letter addressed to the Reich Protector in Bohemia and Moravia on the 4th of September 1939. It is rather curious that the Reich Protector for Bohemia and Moravia is now denying his membership in the council when the letter enclosing the law is addressed to him.

But if the Tribunal will be good enough to turn on to Page 28, which is still that document, the last words on that page describe the tasks of that council and say:

“The task of the Reich Defense Council consists, during peacetime, in deciding all measures for the preparation of Reich defense, and the gathering together of all forces and means of the nation in compliance with the directions of the Führer and Reich Chancellor. The tasks of the Reich Defense Council in wartime will be especially determined by the Führer and Reich Chancellor.”

If the Tribunal will turn to the next page, they will see that the permanent members of the Council are listed, and that the seventh one is the President of the Secret Cabinet Council, who was, again, this defendant.

I submit that that deals, for every relevant period, with this defendant’s statement that he was not a member of the Reich Defense Council.

The second broad point that the Prosecution makes against this defendant is that in assuming the position of Minister of Foreign Affairs in Hitler’s Cabinet, this defendant assumed charge of a foreign policy committed to breach of treaties.

We say first that the Nazi Party had repeatedly and for many years made known its intention to overthrow Germany’s international commitments, even at the risk of war. We refer to Sections 1 and 2 of the Party program, which, as the Tribunal has heard, was published year after year. That is on Page 32 of the document book. It is Document 1708-PS, Exhibit USA-255.

I just remind the Tribunal of these Points 1 and 2:

“1. We demand the unification of all Germans into Greater Germany on the basis of the right of self-determination of peoples.

“2. We demand equality of rights for the German people in respect to other nations; abrogation of the peace treaties of Versailles and St. Germain.”

But probably clearer than that is the statement contained in Hitler’s speech at Munich on the 15th of March 1939; and the Tribunal will find one of the references to that on Page 40 at the middle of the page. It begins:

“My foreign policy had identical aims. My program was to abolish the Treaty of Versailles. It is absolutely nonsense for the rest of the world to pretend today that I had not announced this program until 1933 or 1935 or 1937. Instead of listening to the foolish chatter of emigrees these gentlemen should have read, merely once, what I have written, that is written a thousand times.”

It is futile nonsense for foreigners to raise that point. It would be still more futile for Hitler’s Foreign Minister to suggest that he was ignorant of the aggressive designs of the policy. But I remind the Tribunal that the acceptance of force as a means of solving international problems and achieving the objectives of Hitler’s foreign policy must have been known to anyone as closely in touch with Hitler as the Defendant Von Neurath; and I remind the Tribunal simply by reference to the passages from Mein Kampf, which were quoted by my friend Major Elwyn Jones, especially those toward the end of the book, Pages 552, 553, and 554.

So that the Prosecution say that by the acceptance of this foreign policy the Defendant Von Neurath assisted and promoted the accession to power of the Nazi Party.

The third broad point is that in his capacity as Minister of Foreign Affairs this defendant directed the international aspects of the first phase of the Nazi conspiracy, the consolidation of control in preparation for war.

As I have already indicated, from his close connection with Hitler this defendant must have known the cardinal points of Hitler’s policy leading up to the outbreak of the World War, as outlined in retrospect by Hitler in his speech to his military leaders on the 23rd of November 1939.

This policy had two facets: internally, the establishment of rigid control; externally, the program to release Germany from its international ties. The external program had four points: 1) Secession from the Disarmament Conference; 2) the order to re-arm Germany; 3) the introduction of compulsory military services; and 4) the remilitarization of the Rhineland.

If the Tribunal will look at Page 35 in the document book, at the end of the first paragraph they will find these points very briefly set out, and perhaps I might just read that passage. It is Document 789-PS, Exhibit USA-23—about 10 lines before the break:

“I had to reorganize everything, beginning with the mass of the people and extending it to the Armed Forces. First, reorganization of the interior, abolishment of appearances of decay and defeatist ideas, education to heroism. While reorganizing the interior, I undertook the second task: To release Germany from its international ties. Two particular characteristics are to be pointed out: Secession from the League of Nations and denunciation of the Disarmament Conference. It was a hard decision. The number of prophets who predicted that it would lead to the occupation of the Rhineland was large, the number of believers was very small. I was supported by the nation, which stood firmly behind me, when I carried out my intentions. After that the order for rearmament. Here again there were numerous prophets who predicted misfortunes, and only a few believers. In 1935 the introduction of compulsory armed service. After that, militarization of the Rhineland, again a process believed to be impossible at that time. The number of people who put trust in me was very small. Then, beginning of the fortification of the whole country, especially in the west.”

Now, these are summarized in four points. The Defendant Von Neurath participated directly and personally in accomplishing each of these four aspects of Hitler’s foreign policy, at the same time officially proclaiming that these measures did not constitute steps toward aggression.

The first is a matter of history. When Germany left the Disarmament Conference this defendant sent telegrams dated the 14th of October 1933, to the President of the conference—and that will be found in Dokumente Der Deutschen Politik, on Page 94 of the first volume for that year. Similarly this defendant made the announcement of Germany’s withdrawal from the League of Nations on the 21st of October 1933. That again will be found in the official documents. These are referred to in the transcript of the proceedings of the Trial, and I remind the Tribunal of the complementary documents of military preparation, which of course were read and which are Documents C-140, Exhibit USA-51, the 25th of October 1933, and C-153, Exhibit USA-43, the 12th of May 1934. These have already been read and I merely collect them for the memory and assistance of the Tribunal.

The second point—the rearmament of Germany: When this defendant was Foreign Minister, on the 9th of March 1935, the German Government officially announced the establishment of the German Air Force. That is Document TC-44, Exhibit GB-11, already referred to. On the 21st of May 1935 Hitler announced a purported unilateral repudiation of the Naval, Military, and Air clauses of the Treaty of Versailles which, of course, involved a similar purported unilateral repudiation of the same clauses of the Treaty for the Restoration of Friendly Relations with the United States, and that will be found in Document 2288-PS, Exhibit USA-38, which again has already been read. On the same day the Reich Cabinet, of which this defendant was a member, enacted the secret Reich Defense Law creating the office of Plenipotentiary General for War Economy, afterwards designated by the Wehrmacht armament expert as “the cornerstone of German rearmament.” The reference to the law is Document 2261-PS, Exhibit USA-24, a letter of Von Blomberg dated the 24th of June 1935, enclosing this law, which is already before the Tribunal; and the reference to the comment on the importance of the law is Document 2353-PS, Exhibit USA-35. Some of that has already been read, but if the Tribunal will be good enough to turn to Page 52 where that appears, they will find an extract and I might just give the Tribunal the last sentence:

“The new regulations were stipulated in the Reich Defense Law of 21 May 1935, supposed to be promulgated only in case of war but already declared valid for carrying out war preparations. As this law . . . fixed the duties of the Armed Forces and the other Reich authorities in case of war, it was also the fundamental ruling for the development and activity of the war economy organization.”

The third point is the introduction of compulsory military service. On the 16th of March 1935 this defendant signed the law for the organization of the Armed Forces which provided for universal military service and anticipated a vastly expanded German army. This was described by the Defendant Keitel as the real start of the large scale rearmament program which followed. I will give the official reference in the Reichsgesetzblatt, year 1935, Volume I, Part 1, Page 369; and the references in the transcript are 411 (Volume II, Page 305), 454, and 455 (Volume II, Page 340).

The fourth point was the remilitarization of the Rhineland. The Rhineland was reoccupied on the 7th of March 1936. I remind the Tribunal of the two complementary documents: 2289-PS, Exhibit USA-56, the announcement of this action by Hitler; and C-139, Exhibit USA-53, which is the “Operation Schulung,” giving the military action which was to be given if necessary. Again the reference to the transcript is Page 458 to Page 464 (Volume II, Pages 342 to 347). These were the acts for which the defendant shared responsibility because of his position and because of the steps which he took; but a little later he summed up his views on the actions detailed above in a speech before Germans abroad made on the 29th of August 1937, of which I ask the Tribunal to take judicial notice, as it appears in Das Archiv, 1937, at Page 650. But I quote a short portion of it that appears on Page 72 of the document book:

“The unity of the racial and national will created through Nazism with unprecedented elan has made possible a foreign policy by which the fetters of the Versailles Treaty were forced, the freedom to arm regained, and the sovereignty of the whole nation re-established. We have really again become master in our own house and we have created the means of power to remain henceforth that way for all times. . . . The world should have seen from . . . Hitler’s deeds and words that his aims are not aggressive.”

The world, of course, had not the advantage of seeing these various complementary documents of military preparation which I have had the opportunity of putting before the Tribunal.

The next section—and the next point against this defendant—is that both as Minister of Foreign Affairs and as one of the inner circle of the Führer’s advisers on foreign political matters, this defendant participated in the political planning and preparation for acts of aggression against Austria, Czechoslovakia, and other nations.

If I might first put the defendant’s policy in a sentence, I would say that it can be summarized as breaking one treaty only at a time. He himself put it—if I may say so—slightly more pompously but to the same effect in a speech before the Academy of German Law on the 30th of October 1937, which appears in Das Archiv, October 1937, Page 921, and which the Tribunal will find in the document book on Page 73. The underlining (italics) is mine:

“In recognition of these elementary facts the Reich Cabinet has always interceded in favor of treating every concrete international problem within the scope of methods especially suited to it; not to complicate it unnecessarily by involvement with other problems; and, as long as problems between only two powers are concerned, to choose the direct way for an immediate understanding between these two powers. We are in a position to state that this method has fully proved itself good not only in the German interest, but also in the general interest.

The only country whose interests are not mentioned are the other parties to the various treaties that were dealt with in that way; and the working out of that policy can readily be shown by looking at the tabulated form of the actions of this defendant when he was Foreign Minister or during the term of his immediate successor when the defendant still was purported to have influence.

In 1935 the action was directed against the Western Powers. That action was the rearmament of Germany. When that was going on another country had to be reassured. At that time it was Austria, with the support of Italy—which Austria still had up to 1935. And so you get the fraudulent assurance, the essence of the technique, in that case given by Hitler, on the 21st of May 1935. And that is shown clearly to be false, by the documents which Mr. Alderman put in—I give the general reference to the transcript on Pages 534 to 545 (Volume II, Pages 388 to 398). Then, in 1936, you still have the action necessary against the Western Powers in the occupation of the Rhineland. You still have a fraudulent assurance to Austria in the treaty of the 11th of July of that year; and that is shown to be fraudulent by the letters from the Defendant Von Papen, Exhibits USA-64 (Document 2247-PS) and 67 (Document 2246-PS), to one of which my friend Major Barrington has just referred.

Then in 1937 and 1938 you move on a step and the action is directed against Austria. We know what that action was. It was absorption, planned, at any rate finally, at the meeting on the 5th of November 1937; and action taken on the 11th of March 1938.

Reassurance had to be given to the Western Powers, so you have the assurance to Belgium on the 13th of October 1937, which was dealt with by my friend Mr. Roberts. The Tribunal will find the references in Pages 1100 to 1126 (Volume III, Pages 289 to 307) of the transcript.

We move forward a year and the object of the aggressive action becomes Czechoslovakia. Or I should say we move forward 6 months to a year. There you have the Sudetenland obtained in September; the absorption of the whole of Bohemia and Moravia on the 15th of March 1939.

Then it was necessary to reassure Poland; so an assurance to Poland is given by Hitler on the 20th of February 1938, and repeated up to the 26th of September 1938. The falsity of that assurance was shown over and over again in Colonel Griffith-Jones’ speech on Poland, which the Tribunal will find in the transcript at Pages 966 to 1060 (Volume II, Pages 195 to 261).

Then finally, when they want the action as directed against Poland in the next year for its conquest, assurance must be given to Russia, and so a non-aggression pact is entered into on the 23rd of August 1939, as shown by Mr. Alderman, at Pages 1160 to 1216 (Volume III, Pages 328 to 366).

With regard to that tabular presentation, one might say, in the Latin tag, res ipsa oquitur. But quite a frank statement from this defendant with regard to the earlier part of that can be found in the account of his conversation with the United States Ambassador, Mr. Bullitt, on the 18th of May 1936, which is on Page 74 of the document book, Document L-150, Exhibit USA-65; and if I might read the first paragraph after the introduction which says that he called on this defendant, Mr. Bullitt remarks:

“Von Neurath said that it was the policy of the German Government to do nothing active in foreign affairs until ‘the Rhineland had been digested.’ He explained that he meant that, until the German fortifications had been constructed on the French and Belgian frontiers, the German Government would do everything possible to prevent rather than encourage an outbreak by the Nazis in Austria and would pursue a quiet line with regard to Czechoslovakia. ‘As soon as our fortifications are constructed and the countries of Central Europe realize that France cannot enter German territory at will, all those countries will begin to feel very differently about their foreign policies and a new constellation will develop,’ he said.”

I remind the Tribunal, without citing it, of the conversation referred to by my friend, Major Barrington, a short time ago, between the Defendant Von Papen, as Ambassador, and Mr. Messersmith, which is very much to the same effect.

Then I come to the actual aggression against Austria, and I remind the Tribunal that this defendant was Foreign Minister:

First, during the early Nazi plottings against Austria in 1934. The Tribunal will find these in the transcript at Pages 475 to 489 (Volume II, Pages 352-364), and I remind them generally that that was the murder of Chancellor Dollfuss and the ancillary acts which were afterwards so strongly approved.

Secondly, when the false assurance was given to Austria on the 21st of May 1935, and the fraudulent treaty made on the 11th of July 1936. References to these are Document TC-26, which is Exhibit GB-19, and Document TC-22, which is Exhibit GB-20. The reference in the transcript is at Pages 544 and 545 (Volume II, Page 383).

Third, when the Defendant Von Papen was carrying on his subterranean intrigues in the period from 1935 to 1937. I again give the references so the Tribunal will have it in mind: Document 2247-PS, Exhibit USA-64, letter dated 17 May 1935; and Exhibit USA-67, Document 2246-PS, 1 September 1936. The references in the transcript are Pages 492 (Volume II, Pages 363, 364), 516-518 (Volume II, Pages 372-374), 526-545 (Volume II, Pages 378 to 391), and 553-554 (Volume II, Pages 394, 395).

This Defendant Von Neurath was present when Hitler declared, at the Hossbach interview on the 5th of November 1937, that the German question could only be solved by force and that his plans were to conquer Austria and Czechoslovakia. That is Document 386-PS, Exhibit USA-25, which the Tribunal will find at Page 82. If you will look at the sixth line of Page 82, after the heading, you will see that one of the persons in attendance at this highly confidential meeting was the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs, Freiherr von Neurath.

Without reading a document which the Tribunal have had referred to them more than once, may I remind the Tribunal that it is on Page 86 that the passage about the conquest of Austria occurs, and if the Tribunal will look after “2:” and “3:” the next sentence is:

“For the improvement of our military-political position, it must be our first aim in every case of warlike entanglement to conquer Czechoslovakia and Austria simultaneously, in order to remove any threat from the flanks in case of a possible advance westwards.”

That is developed on the succeeding page. The important point is that this defendant was present at that meeting; and it is impossible for him after that meeting to say that he was not acting except with his eyes completely open and with complete comprehension as to what was intended.

Then the next point. During the actual Anschluss he received a note from the British Ambassador dated the 11th of March 1938. That is Document 3045-PS, Exhibit USA-127. He sent the reply contained in Document 3287-PS, Exhibit USA-128. If I might very briefly remind the Tribunal of the reply, I think all that is necessary—and of course the Tribunal have had this document referred to them before—is at the top of Page 93. I wish to call attention to two obvious untruths.

The Defendant Von Neurath states in the sixth line:

“It is untrue that the Reich used forceful pressure to bring about this development, especially the assertion, which was spread later by the former Federal Chancellor, that the German Government had presented the Federal President with a conditional ultimatum. It is a pure invention.”

According to the ultimatum, he had to appoint a proposed candidate as Chancellor to form a Cabinet conforming to the proposals of the German Government. Otherwise the invasion of Austria by German troops was held in prospect.

“The truth of the matter is that the question of sending military or police forces from the Reich was only brought up when the newly formed Austrian Cabinet addressed a telegram, already published by the press, to the German Government, urgently asking for the dispatch of German troops as soon as possible, in order to restore peace and order and to avoid bloodshed. Faced with the imminent danger of a bloody Civil war in Austria, the German Government then decided to comply with the appeal addressed to it.”

Well, as I said, My Lord, these are the two most obvious untruths, and all one can say is that it must have, at any rate, given this defendant a certain macabre sort of humor to write that, when the truth was, as the Tribunal know it from the report of Gauleiter Rainer to Bürckel, which has been put in before the Tribunal as Document 812-PS, Exhibit USA-61, and when they have heard, as they have at length, the transcripts of the Defendant Göring’s telephone conversation with Austria on that day, which is Document 2949-PS, Exhibit USA-76, and the entries of the Defendant Jodl’s diary for the 11th, 13th, and 14th of February, which is Document 1780-PS, Exhibit USA-72.

In this abundance of proof of the untruthfulness of these statements the Tribunal may probably think that the most clear and obvious correction is in the transcription of the Defendant Göring’s telephone conversations, which are so amply corroborated by the other documents.

The Prosecution submits that it is inconceivable that this defendant who, according to the Defendant Jodl’s diary—may I ask the Tribunal just to look at Page 116 of the document book, the entry in the Defendant Jodl’s diary for the 10th of March, so that they have this point quite clear? It is the third paragraph, and it says:

“At 1300 hours General Keitel informs Chief of Operational Staff, Admiral Canaris. Ribbentrop is being detained in London. Neurath takes over the Foreign Office.”

I submit that it is inconceivable when this defendant had taken over the Foreign Office, was dealing with the matter, and as I shall show the Tribunal in a moment, co-operating with the Defendant Göring to suit the susceptibilities of the Czechs, that he should have been so ignorant of the truth of events and what really was happening as to write that letter in honor and good faith.

His position can be shown equally clearly by the account which is given of him in the affidavit of Mr. Messersmith, Document 2385-PS, Exhibit USA-68. If the Tribunal will look at Page 107 of the document book, I remind them of that entry which exactly describes the action and style of activity of this defendant at this crisis. Two-thirds of the way down the page the paragraph begins:

“I should emphasize here in this statement that the men who made these promises were not only the dyed-in-the-wool Nazis, but more conservative Germans who already had begun willingly to lend themselves to the Nazi program.

“In an official dispatch to the Department of State from Vienna, dated 10 October 1935, I wrote as follows:

“ ‘Europe will not get away from the myth that Neurath, Papen, and Mackensen are not dangerous people, and that they are “diplomats of the old school.” They are in fact servile instruments of the regime, and just because the outside world looks upon them as harmless they are able to work more effectively. They are able to sow discord just because they propagate the myth that they are not in sympathy with the regime.’ ”

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will adjourn now.

[The Tribunal adjourned, until 24 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Thursday, 24 January 1946

Morning Session

MARSHAL (Colonel Charles W. Mays): If it please Your Honor, the Defendant Streicher and the Defendant Kaltenbrunner are absent this morning due to illness.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: May it please the Tribunal, before the Tribunal adjourned, I was dealing with the share of the Defendant Neurath in the aggression against Austria. Before I proceed to the next stage, I should like the Tribunal, if it be so kind, to look at the original exhibit to which I am referred, Document 3287-PS, Exhibit USA-128, which is the letter from this defendant to Sir Nevile Henderson, who was then the British Ambassador. The only point in which I would be grateful is if the Tribunal would note Page 92 of the document book. When I say original, that is a certified copy certified by the British Foreign Office, but the Tribunal will see that the heading is from the President of the Secret Cabinet Council. That is the point that the Tribunal will remember. The question was raised as to the existence or activity of that body and the letterhead is from the defendant in that capacity.

The next stage in the Austrian aggression is that at the time of the occupation of Austria, this defendant gave the assurance to M. Mastny, the Ambassador of Czechoslovakia to Berlin, regarding the continued independence of Czechoslovakia. That is one document at Page 123, TC-27, which I have already put in as Exhibit GB-21. It was to Lord Halifax, who was then Foreign Secretary; and if I may read the second paragraph just to remind the Tribunal of the circumstances in which it was written, M. Masaryk says:

“I have in consequence been instructed by my Government to bring to the official knowledge of His Majesty’s Government the following facts: Yesterday evening (the 11th of March) Field Marshal Göring made two separate statements to M. Mastny, the Czechoslovak Minister in Berlin, assuring him that the developments in Austria will in no way have any detrimental influence on the relations between the German Reich and Czechoslovakia, and emphasizing the continued earnest endeavor on the part of Germany to improve those mutual relations.”

And then there are the particulars of the way it was put to Defendant Göring, which have been brought to the Tribunal’s attention several times, and I shall not do it again. The 6th paragraph begins: “M. Mastny was in a position to give him definite and binding assurances on this subject”—that is, to give the Defendant Göring on the Czech mobilization—and then it goes on:

“. . . and today spoke with Baron Von Neurath, who, among other things, assured him on behalf of Herr Hitler that Germany still considers herself bound by the German-Czechoslovak Arbitration Convention concluded at Locarno in October 1925.”

In view of the fact that the Defendant Von Neurath had been present at the meeting on the 5th of November, 4 months previously, when he had heard Hitler’s views on Czechoslovakia—and that it was only 6 months before that really negotiated treaty was disregarded at once—that paragraph, in my submission, is an excellent example on the technique of which this defendant was the first professor.

I now come to the aggression against Czechoslovakia. On 28 May 1938 Hitler held a conference of important leaders including Beck, Von Brauchitsch, Raeder, Keitel, Göring, and Ribbentrop at which Hitler affirmed that preparations should be made for military action against Czechoslovakia by October; and it is believed, though not—I say frankly—confirmed, that the Defendant Von Neurath attended. The reference of that meeting is in the transcript of Pages 742 and 743 (Volume III, Page 42).

THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, is there any evidence?

SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: No. Your Lordship will remember the documents, a long series of them, and it does not state who was present; therefore, I express that and put it with reserve.

On the 4th of September 1938 the government of which Von Neurath was a member enacted a new Secret Reich Defense Law which defined various official responsibilities in clear anticipation of war. This law provided, as did the previous Secret Reich Defense Law, for a Reich Defense Council as a supreme policy board for war preparations. The Tribunal will remember that I have already referred them to Document 2194-PS, Exhibit USA-36, showing these facts. Then there came the Munich Agreement of 29 September 1938, but in spite of that, on the 14th of March 1939 German troops marched into Czechoslovakia; and the proclamation to the German people and the order to the Wehrmacht is Document TC-50, Exhibit GB-7, which the Tribunal will find at Page 124, which has already been referred to and I shall not read it again.

On the 16th of March 1939 the German Government, of which Von Neurath was still a member, promulgated the “Decree of the Führer and Reich Chancellor on the Establishment of the Protectorate ‘Bohemia and Moravia.’ ” That date is the 16th of March. That is at Page 126 of the document book, TC-51, Exhibit GB-8.

If I may leave that for the moment, I will come back to it in dealing with the setting up of the Protectorate. I will come back in a moment and read Article 5. But taking the events in the order of time, the following week the Defendant Von Ribbentrop signed a treaty with Slovakia, which is at Page 129 (Document 1439-PS, Exhibit GB-135); and the Tribunal may remember Article 2 of that treaty, which is:

“For the purpose of making effective the protection undertaken by the German Reich, the German Armed Forces shall have the right at all times to construct military installations and to keep them garrisoned in the strength they deem necessary in an area delimited on its western side by the frontiers of the State of Slovakia, and on its eastern side by a line formed by the eastern rims of the Lower Carpathians, the White Carpathians, and the Javornik Mountains.

“The Government of Slovakia will take the necessary steps to assure that the land required for these installations shall be conveyed to the German Armed Forces. Furthermore, the Government of Slovakia will agree to grant exemption from custom duties for imports from the Reich for the maintenance of the German troops and the supply of military installations.”

The Tribunal will appreciate that the ultimate objective of Hitler’s policy disclosed at the meeting at which this defendant was present on the 5th of November 1937, that is the resumption of the “Drang nach Osten” and the acquisition of Lebensraum in the East, was obvious from the terms of this treaty as it has been explicit in Hitler’s statement.

Then we come to the pith of this criminality. By accepting and occupying the position of Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia, the Defendant Von Neurath personally adhered to the aggression against Czechoslovakia and the world. He further actively participated in the conspiracy of world aggression and he assumed a position of leadership in the execution of policies involving violating the laws of war and the commission of crimes against humanity.

The Tribunal will appreciate that I am not going to trespass on the ground covered by my colleagues and go into the crimes. I want to show quite clearly to the Tribunal the basis for these crimes which was laid by the legal position which this defendant assumed.

The first point. The Defendant Von Neurath assumed the position of Protector under a sweeping grant of powers. The act creating the Protectorate provided—if the Tribunal would be good enough to turn back on Page 126 in the document book (TC-51, Exhibit GB-8) and look at Article V of the Act, it reads as follows:

“1. As trustee of Reich interests, the Führer and Chancellor of the Reich nominates a ‘Reich Protector in Bohemia and Moravia’ with Prague as his seat of office.

“2. The Reich Protector, as representative of the Führer and Chancellor of the Reich and as Commissioner of the Reich Government, is charged with the duty of seeing to the observance of the political principles laid down by the Führer and Chancellor of the Reich.

“3. The members of the Government of the Protectorate shall be confirmed by the Reich Protector. The confirmation may be withdrawn.

“4. The Reich Protector is entitled to inform himself of all measures taken by the Government of the Protectorate and to give advice. He can object to measures calculated to harm the Reich and, in case of danger in delay, issue ordinances required for the common interest.

“5. The promulgation of laws, ordinances, and other legal provisions and the execution of administrative measures and legal judgments shall be deferred if the Reich Protector enters an objection.”

At the very outset of the Protectorate the Defendant Von Neurath’s supreme authority was implemented by a series of basic decrees of which I ask the Tribunal to take judicial notice. They established the alleged legal foundation for the policy and program which resulted, all aimed towards the systematic destruction of the national integrity of the Czechs:

1. By granting the “racial Germans” in Czechoslovakia a supreme order of citizenship—and I give the official reference to the Decree of the Führer and Reich Chancellor concerning the Protectorate to which I just referred—and then;

2. An act concerning the representation in the Reichstag of Greater Germany by German nationals resident in the Protectorate, 13 April 1939;

3. An order concerning the acquisition of German citizenship by former Czechoslovakian citizens of German stock, 20 April 1939.

Then there was a series of decrees that granted “racial Germans” in Czechoslovakia a preferred status at law and in the courts:

1. An order concerning the Exercise of Criminal Jurisdiction in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, 14 April 1939;

2. An order concerning the Exercise of Jurisdiction in Civil Proceedings, 14 April 1939;

3. An order concerning the Exercise of Military Jurisdiction, on 8 May 1939.

Then the orders also granted to the Protector broad powers to change by decree the autonomous law of the Protectorate. That is contained in the Ordinance on Legislation in the Protectorate, 7 June 1939.

And finally the Protector was authorized to go with the Reich Leader SS and the Chief of the German Police to take, if necessary, such police measures which go beyond the limits usually valid for police measures.

In view of the form of the order itself the Tribunal, if it cares to listen and to take judicial notice of this, in the Reichsgesetzblatt we have found inserted that one in the document book at Page 131, which rather staggers the imagination to know what can be police measures even beyond the limits usually valid for police measures when one has seen police measures in Germany between 1933 and 1939. But if such increase was possible, and presumably it was believed to be possible, then an increase was given by the Defendant Von Neurath and used by him for coercion of the Czechs.

The declared basic policy of the Protectorate was concentrated upon the central objective of destroying the identity of the Czechs as a nation and absorbing their territory into the Reich; and if the Tribunal will be good enough to turn to Page 132, they will find Document Number 862-PS, Exhibit USA-313, and I think that has been read to the Tribunal. Still, the Tribunal might bear with me so that I might indicate the nature of the document to them.

This memorandum is signed by Lieutenant General of Infantry Friderici. It is headed “The Deputy General of the Armed Forces with the Reich Protector in Bohemia and Moravia.” It is marked “Top Secret,” dated 15 October 1940. That is practically a year before this Defendant Von Neurath went on leave, as he puts it, on 27 September 1941; and it is called the “Basic Political Principles in the Protectorate,” and there are four copies. It also had gone to the Defendant Keitel and the Defendant Jodl, and it begins: “On 9 October of this year”—that is 1940:

“On 9 October of this year the Office of the Reich Protector held an official conference in which State Secretary SS Gruppenführer K. H. Frank”—that is not the Defendant Frank, it is the other K. H. Frank—“spoke about the following:

“Since creation of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, party agencies, industrial circles, as well as agencies of the central authorities of Berlin have been considering the solution of the Czech problem.

“After careful deliberation, the Reich Protector expressed his view about the various plans in a memorandum. In this, three possibilities of solution were indicated:

“a. German infiltration of Moravia and withdrawal of the Czech part of the people to a remainder of Bohemia. This solution is considered as unsatisfactory, because the Czech problem, even if in a diminished form, will continue to exist.

“b. Many arguments can be brought up against the most radical solution, namely, the deportation of all Czechs. Therefore the memorandum comes to the conclusion that it cannot be carried out within a reasonable space of time.

“c. Assimilation of the Czechs, that is, absorption of about half of the Czech people by the Germans, to the extent that it is of importance from a racial or other standpoint. This will be brought about, among other things, also by increasing the Arbeitseinsatz of the Czechs in the Reich territory, with the exception of the Sudeten German border districts—in other words, by dispersing the block of Czech people. The other half of the Czech nationality must by all possible ways be deprived of its power, eliminated, and shipped out of the country. This applies particularly to the racially mongoloid parts and to the major part of the intellectual class. The latter can scarcely be converted ideologically and would represent a burden by constantly making claims for the leadership over the other Czech classes and thus interfering with a rapid assimilation.

“Elements which counteract the planned Germanization are to be handled roughly and should be eliminated.

“The above development naturally presupposes an increased influx of Germans from the Reich territory into the Protectorate.

“After a report, the Führer has chosen solution c (assimilation) as a directive for the solution of the Czech problem and decided that, while keeping up the autonomy of the Protectorate outwardly, Germanization will have to be carried out uniformly by the Office of the Reich Protector for years to come.

“From the above no specific conclusions are drawn by the Armed Forces. It is the way that has always been followed. In this connection, I refer to my memorandum which was sent to the Chief of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces, dated 12 July 1939, entitled ‘The Czech Problem.’ ”

And that is signed, as I said, by the Deputy Lieutenant General of the Armed Forces.

That view of the Reich Protector was accepted and formed a basis of his policy. The result was a program of consolidating German control over Bohemia and Moravia by the systematic oppression of the Czechs through the abolition of civil liberties and the systematic undermining of the native political, economic, and cultural structure by a regime of terror, which will be dealt with by my Soviet Union colleagues. They will show clearly, I submit, that the only protection given by this defendant was a protection to the perpetrators of innumerable crimes.

I have already drawn the attention of the Tribunal to the many honors and rewards which this defendant received as his worth, and it might well be said that Hitler showered more honors on Von Neurath than on some of the leading Nazis who had been with the Party since the very beginning. His appointment as President of the newly created Secret Cabinet Council in 1938 was in itself a new and singular distinction. On 22 September 1940 Hitler awarded him the War Merit Cross 1st Class as Reich Protector for Bohemia and Moravia. That is in the Deutsches Nachrichtenbüro, 22 September 1940.

He was also awarded the Golden Badge of the Party and was promoted by Hitler, personally, from the rank of Gruppenführer to Obergruppenführer in the SS on 21 June 1943. And I also inform the Tribunal that he and Ribbentrop were the only two Germans to be awarded the Adlerorden, a distinction normally reserved for foreigners. On his seventieth birthday, 2 February 1943, it was made the occasion for most of the German newspapers to praise his many years of service to the Nazi regime. This service, as submitted by the Prosecution, may be summed up in two ways:

1) He was an internal Fifth Columnist among the Conservative political circles in Germany. They had been anti-Nazi but were converted in part by seeing one of themselves, in the person of this defendant, wholeheartedly with the Nazis;

2) His previous reputation as a diplomat made public opinion abroad slow to believe that he would be a member of a cabinet which did not stand by its words and assurances. It was most important for Hitler that his own readiness to break every treaty or commitment should be concealed as long as possible, and for this purpose he found in the Defendant Von Neurath his handiest tool.

That concludes the presentation against the Defendant Von Neurath.

THE PRESIDENT: In view of the motion which was made yesterday by Counsel for the Defendant Hess, the Tribunal will postpone the presentation of the individual case against Hess, and will proceed with the presentation of the case by counsel for France.

M. CHARLES DUBOST (Deputy Chief Prosecutor for the French Republic): When stating the charges which now weigh upon the defendants, my British and American colleagues showed evidence that these men conceived and executed a plan and plot for the domination of Europe. They have shown you of what crimes against peace these men became guilty by launching unjust wars. They have shown you that, as leaders of Nazi Germany, they had all premeditated unjust wars, and had participated in the conspiracy against peace.

Then my friends and colleagues of the French Delegation, M. Herzog, M. Faure and M. Gerthoffer, submitted documents establishing that the defendants, who all in various positions counted among the leaders of Nazi Germany, are responsible for the repeated violations of the laws and customs of war committed by men of the Reich in the course of military operations. However, it still remains for us to expose the atrocities of which men, women, and children of the occupied countries of the west were victims.

We intend at this point to prove that the defendants, in their capacity as leaders of Hitlerite Germany, systematically pursued a policy of extermination, the cruelty of which increased from day to day until the final defeat of Germany; that the defendants planned, conceived, willed, and prescribed these atrocities as part of a system which was to enable them to accomplish a political aim. It is this political aim which closely binds all the facts we intend to present to you. The crimes perpetrated against people and property, as presented so far by my colleagues of the French Prosecution, were in close connection with the war. They had the distinct character of war crimes stricto sensu. Those which I shall present to you surpass them both in meaning and extent. They form part of the plans of a policy of domination, of expansion, beyond war itself.

It is Hitler himself who gave the best definition of this policy in one of his speeches in Munich on 16 May 1927. He was deceiving his listeners about the danger that France, an agricultural country of only 40 million inhabitants, might represent for Germany, which was already a highly-industrialized country with a population of nearly 70 million. That day Hitler said:

“There is only one way for Germany to escape encirclement; and it is the destruction of the state which, by the natural order of things, will always be her mortal enemy: that is France. When a nation is aware that its whole existence is endangered by an enemy, it must aim at one thing only: the annihilation of that enemy.”

During the first months that followed their victory, the Germans seemed to have abandoned their plan of annihilation; but this was only a tactical pretense. They hoped to draw into their war against England and the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics the western nations they had enslaved. By doses of treachery and violence, they attempted to make these western nations take the road of collaboration. The latter resisted; and the defendants then abandoned their tactics and came back to their big scheme, the annihilation of conquered peoples in order to secure in Europe the space necessary for the 250 million Germans whom they hoped to settle there in generations to come.

This destruction, this annihilation—I repeat the very words used by Hitler in his speech—was undertaken under various pretenses; the elimination of inferior, or negroid races; the extermination of bolshevism; the destruction of Jewish-Masonic influences hostile to the founding of the pseudo “New European Order.”

In fact, this destruction, this elimination, conduced to the assassination of the elite and vital forces opposed to the Nazis; it also led to the reduction of the means of livelihood of the enslaved nations.

All of this was done, as I shall prove to you, in execution of a deliberate plan, the existence of which is confirmed, among other things, by the repetition and the immutability of the same facts in all the occupied countries.

Faced with this repetition and this immutability, it is no longer possible to claim that only the one who performed the crime was guilty. This repetition and this immutability prove that the same criminal will united all the members of the German Government, all the leaders of the German Reich.

It is from this common will that the official policy of terrorism and extermination, which directed the strokes of the executioners, was born; and it is for having participated in the creation of this common will that each of the defendants here present has been placed in the ranks of major war criminals.

I shall come back to this point when, having finished my presentation of the facts, I shall have to qualify the crime, in accordance with the legal tradition of my country.

Allow me to give you some indications as to how, with your kind permission, I intend to make my presentation.

The facts I am to prove here are the results of many testimonies. We could have called innumerable witnesses to this stand. Their statements have been collected by the French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes. It seemed to us that it would simplify and shorten the procedure if we were to give you extracts only from the testimony that we have received in writing.

With your authorization, therefore, I shall limit myself to reading excerpts from the written testimonies collected in France by official organizations qualified to investigate War Crimes. However, if in the course of this presentation it appears necessary to call certain witnesses, we shall proceed to do so but with constant care not to slow down the sessions in any way and to bring them with all speed to the only possible conclusion, the one our peoples expect.

The whole question of atrocities is dominated by the German terrorist policy. Under this aspect it is not without precedent in the Germanic practice of war. We all remember the execution of hostages at Dinant during the war of 1914, the execution of hostages in the citadel of Laon, or the hostages of Senlis. But Nazism perfected this terrorist policy; for Nazism, terror is a means of subjugation. We all remember the propaganda picture about the war in Poland, shown in Oslo in particular on the eve of the invasion of Norway. For Nazism, terror is a means of subjugating all enslaved people in order to submit them to the aims of its policy.

The first signs of this terrorist policy during the occupation are fresh in the memory of all Frenchmen. Only a few months after the signing of the armistice they saw red posters edged with black appear on the walls of Paris, as well as in the smallest villages of France, proclaiming the first execution of hostages. We know mothers who were informed of the execution of their sons in this way. These executions were carried out by the occupiers after anti-German incidents. These incidents were the answer of the French people to the official policy of collaboration. Resistance to this policy stiffened, became organized, and with it the repressive measures increased in intensity until 1944—the climax of German terrorism in France and in the countries of the West. At that time the Army and the SS Police no longer spoke of the execution of hostages; they organized real reprisal expeditions during which whole villages were set on fire, and thousands of civilians killed, or arrested and deported. But before reaching this stage, the Germans attempted to justify their criminal exactions in the eyes of a susceptible public opinion. They promulgated, as we shall prove, a real code of hostages, and pretended they were merely complying with law every time they proceeded to carry out reprisal executions.

The taking of hostages, as you know, is prohibited by Article 50 of the Hague Convention. I shall read this text to you. It is to be found in the Fourth Convention, Article 50:

“No collective penalty, pecuniary or other, can be decreed against populations for individual acts for which they cannot be held jointly responsible.” (Document Number RF-265).

And yet, supreme perfidy! The German General Staff, the German Government, will endeavor to turn this regulation into a dead letter and to set up as law the systematic violation of the Hague Convention.

I shall describe to you how the General Staff formed its pseudo-law on hostages, a pseudo-law which in France found its final expression in what Stülpnagel and the German administration called the “hostages code.” I shall show you, in passing, which of these defendants are the most guilty of this crime.

On the 15th of February 1940 in a secret report addressed to the Defendant Göring, the OKW justifies the taking of hostages, as proved by the excerpt from Document Number 1585-PS which I propose to read to you. This document is dated Berlin, 15 February 1940. It bears the heading: “Supreme Command of the Armed Forces. Secret. To the Reich Minister for Aviation and Supreme Commander of the Air Force.”

“Subject: Arrest of Hostages.

“According to the opinion of the OKW, the arrest of hostages is justified in all cases in which the security of the troops and the carrying out of their orders demand it. In most cases it will be necessary to have recourse to it in case of resistance or an untrustworthy attitude on the part of the population of an occupied territory, provided that the troops are in combat or that a situation exists which renders other means of restoring security insufficient . . . .

“In selecting hostages it must be borne in mind that their arrest shall take place only if the refractory sections of the population are anxious for the hostages to remain alive. The hostages shall therefore be chosen from sections of the population from which a hostile attitude may be expected. The arrest of hostages shall be carried out among persons whose fate, we may suppose, will influence the insurgents.”

This document is filed by the French Delegation as Exhibit Number RF-267.

To my knowledge, Göring never raised any objection to this thesis. Here is one more paragraph from an order, Document Number F-508 (Exhibit Number RF-268), from the Commander-in-Chief of the Army in France, administrative section, signed “Stroccius,” 12 September 1940. Three months after the beginning of the occupation, the hostages are defined therein as follows:

“Hostages are inhabitants of a country who guarantee with their lives the impeccable attitude of the population. The responsibility for their fate is thus placed in the hands of their compatriots. Therefore, the population must be publicly threatened that the hostages will be held responsible for hostile acts of individuals. Only French citizens may be taken as hostages. The hostages can be held responsible only for actions committed after their arrest and after the public proclamation.”

This ordinance cancels 5 directives prior to 12 September 1940. This question was the subject of numerous texts, and two General Staff ordinances, dated, as indicated at the head of the Document Number F-510 (Exhibit Number RF-269), 2 November 1940 and 13 February 1941:

“If acts of violence are committed by the inhabitants of the country against members of the occupation forces, if offices and installations of the Armed Forces are damaged or destroyed, or if any other attacks are directed against the security of German units and service establishments, and if, under the circumstances, the population of the place of the crime or of the immediate neighborhood can be considered as jointly responsible for those acts of sabotage, measures of prevention and expiation may be ordered by which the civil population is to be deterred in future from committing, encouraging, or tolerating acts of that kind. The population is to be treated as jointly responsible for individual acts of sabotage, if by its attitude in general towards the German Armed Forces, it has favored hostile or unfriendly acts of individuals, or if by its passive resistance against the investigation of previous acts of sabotage, it has encouraged hostile elements to similar acts, or otherwise created a favorable atmosphere for opposition to the German occupation. All measures must be taken in a way that it is possible to carry out. Threats that cannot be realized give the impression of weakness.”

I submit these two documents as Exhibit Number RF-268 and 269 (Documents Number F-508 and F-510).

Until now we have not found any trace in these German texts of an affirmation which might lead one to think that the taking of hostages and their execution constitute a right for the occupying power; but here is a German text which explicitly formulates this idea. It is quoted in your book of documents as Document Number F-507 (Exhibit Number RF-270), dated Brussels, 18 April 1944. It is issued by the Chief Judge to the military Commander-in-Chief in Belgium and the North of France; and it is addressed to the German Armistice Commission in Wiesbaden. It reads in the margin: “Most Secret. Subject: Execution of 8 terrorists in Lille on 22 December 1943. Reference: Your letter of 16 March 1944 Lille document.” You will read in the middle of Paragraph 2 of the text:

“. . . Moreover, I maintain my point of view that the legal foundations for the measures taken by the Oberfeldkommandantur of Lille, by virtue of the letter of my police group of the 2d of March 1944, are, regardless of the opinion of the Armistice Commission, sufficiently justified and further explanations are superfluous. The Armistice Commission is in a position to declare to the French, if it wishes to go into the question in detail at all, that the executions have been carried out in conformity with the general principles of the law concerning hostages.”

It is, therefore, quite obviously a state doctrine which is involved. Innocent people become forfeit. They answer with their lives for the attitude of their fellow-citizens towards the German Army. If an offense is committed of which they are completely ignorant, they are the object of a collective penalty possibly entailing death. This is the official German thesis imposed by the German High Command, in spite of the protests of the German Armistice Commission in Wiesbaden. I say: A thesis imposed by the German High Command, and I will produce the evidence. Keitel, on the 16th of September 1941, signed a general order which has already been read and filed by my American colleagues under Document Number 389-PS (Exhibit Number RF-271) and which I shall begin to explain. This order concerns all the occupied territories of the East and the West, as established by the list of addresses which includes all the military commanders of the countries then occupied by Germany: France, Belgium, Norway, Holland, Denmark, eastern territories, Ukraine, Serbia, Salonika, southern Greece, Crete. This order was in effect for the duration of the war. We have a text of 1944 which refers to it. This order of Keitel, Chief of the OKW, is dictated by a violent spirit of anti-Communist repression. It aims at all kinds of repression of the civilian population.

This order, which concerns even the commanders whose troops are stationed in the West, points out to them that in all cases in which attacks are made against the German Army:

“It is necessary to establish that we are dealing with a mass movement uniformly directed by Moscow to which may also be imputed the seemingly unimportant sporadic incidents which have occurred in regions which have hitherto remained quiet.”

Consequently Keitel orders, among other things, that 50 to 100 Communists are to be put to death for each German soldier killed. This is a political conception which we constantly meet in all manifestations of German terrorism. As far as Hitlerite propaganda is concerned, all resistance to Germany is of Communist inspiration, if not in essence Communist. The Germans thereby hoped to eliminate from among the resistance the nationalists whom they thought hostile to Communism. But the Nazis also pursued another aim: They still hoped above all to divide France and the other conquered countries of the West into two hostile factions and to put one of these factions at their service under the pretext of anti-Communism.

THE PRESIDENT: Would that be a convenient time to break off for 10 minutes?

[A recess was taken.]

M. DUBOST: Keitel confirmed this order concerning hostages on 24 September 1941. We submit it as Exhibit Number RF-272, and you will find it in your document book as F-554. I shall read you the first paragraph:

“Following instructions by the Führer, the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces issued on 16 September 1941 an order concerning the Communist revolutionary movements in the occupied territories. The order was addressed to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs for the attention of Ambassador Ritter. It also deals with the question of capital punishment in court-martial proceedings.

“According to the order, in the future, most stringent measures must be taken in the occupied territories.”

The choice of hostages is also indicated thus in Document Number 877-PS, which has already been read to you and which is previous to the aggression of Germany against Russia. It is necessary to remind the Tribunal of this document because it shows the premeditation of the German Command and the Nazi Government to divide the occupied countries, to take away from the partisan resistance all its patriotic character, in order to substitute for it a political character which it never had. We submit this document under Exhibit Number RF-273:

“In this connection it must be borne in mind that, apart from other adversaries with whom our troops have to contend, there is a particularly dangerous element of the civilian population which is destructive of all order and propagates Jewish-Bolshevist philosophy. There is no doubt that, wherever he possibly can, this enemy uses this weapon of disintegration cunningly and in ambush against the German forces which are fighting and liberating the country.”

This document is an official document issued by the headquarters of the High Command of the Army. It expresses the general doctrine of all the German Staff. It is Keitel who presides over the formation of this doctrine. He is therefore not only a soldier under the orders of his government; but at the same time that he is a general, he is also a Nazi politician whose acts are those of a war leader and also those of a politician serving the Hitlerite policy. You have proof of it in the document which I have just read to you: A general who is also a politician, in whom both politics and the conduct of war are combined in one single preoccupation. This is not surprising for those who know the German line of thought, which had never separated war and politics. Was it not Clausewitz who said that war was only the continuation of politics by other means?

This is doubly important. This constitutes a direct and crushing charge against Keitel; but Keitel is the German General Staff. Now this organization is indicted, and we see by this document that this indictment is justified as the German General Staff dabbled in the criminal policy of the German Cabinet.

In the case of France, the general orders of Keitel were adapted by Stülpnagel in his order of 30 September 1941, better known in France under the name of “hostages code,” which repeats and specifies in detail the previous order, namely that of 23 August 1941. This order of 30 September 1941 is of major importance to anyone who wishes to prove under what circumstances French hostages were shot. This is why I shall be obliged to read large extracts. It defines, in Paragraph 3, the categories of Frenchmen who will be considered as hostages. I shall read this document 1588-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-274. Paragraph I concerns the seizure of hostages. I read:

“1. On 22 August 1941, I issued the following announcement:

“ ‘On the morning of 21 August 1941, a member of the German Armed Forces was killed in Paris as a result of a murderous attack. I therefore order that:

“ ‘1. All Frenchmen held in custody of whatever kind, by the German authorities or on behalf of German authorities in France, are to be considered as hostages as from 23 August.

“ ‘2. If any further incident occurs, a number of these hostages are to be shot, to be determined according to the gravity of the attempt.’

“2. On 19 September 1941 by an announcement to the Plenipotentiary of the French Government attached to the Military Commander in France, I ordered that, as from 19 September 1941, all French males who are under arrest of any kind by the French authorities or who are taken into custody because of Communist or anarchistic agitation are to be kept under arrest by the French authorities also on behalf of the Military Commander in France.

“3. On the basis of my notification of the 22d of August 1941 and of my order of the 19th of September 1941 the following groups of persons are therefore hostages:

“(a) All Frenchmen who are kept in detention of any kind whatsoever by the German authorities, such as police custody, imprisonment on remand, or penal detention.

“(b) All Frenchmen who are kept in detention of any kind whatsoever by the French authority on behalf of the German authorities. This group includes:

“(aa) All Frenchmen who are kept in detention of any kind whatsoever by the French authorities because of Communist or anarchist activities.

“(bb) All Frenchmen on whom the French penal authorities impose prison terms at the request of the German military courts and which the latter consider justified.

“(cc) All Frenchmen who are arrested and kept in custody by the French authorities upon demand of the German authorities or who are being handed over by the Germans to French authorities with the order to keep them under arrest.

“(c) Stateless inhabitants who have already been living for some time in France are to be considered as Frenchmen within the meaning of my notification of the 22d of August 1941. . . .

“III. Release from detention.

“Persons who were not yet in custody on 22 August 1941 or on 19 September 1941 but who were arrested later or are still being arrested are hostages as from the date of detention if the other conditions apply to them.

“The release of arrested persons authorized on account of expiration of sentences, lifting of the order for arrest, or for other reasons will not be affected by my announcement of 22 August 1941. Those released are no longer hostages.

“In as far as persons are in custody of any kind with the French authorities for Communist or anarchist activity, their release is possible only with my approval as I have informed the French Government. . . .

“VI. Lists of hostages.

“If an incident occurs which according to my announcement of 22 August 1941 necessitates the shooting of hostages, the execution must immediately follow the order. The district commanders, therefore, must select for their own districts from the total number of prisoners (hostages) those who, from a practical point of view, may be considered for execution and enter them on a list of hostages. These lists of hostages serve as a basis for the proposals to be submitted to me in the case of an execution.

“1. According to the observations made so far, the perpetrators of outrages originate from Communist or anarchist terror gangs. The district commanders are, therefore, to select from those in detention (hostages), those persons who, because of their Communist or anarchist views in the past or their positions in such organizations or their former attitude in other ways, are most suitable for execution. In making the selection it should be borne in mind that the better known the hostages to be shot, the greater will be the deterrent effect on the perpetrators, themselves, and on those persons who, in France or abroad, bear the moral responsibility—as instigators or by their propaganda—for acts of terror and sabotage. Experience shows that the instigators and the political circles interested in these plots are not concerned about the life of obscure followers, but are more likely to be concerned about the lives of their own former officials. Consequently, we must place at the head of these lists:

“(a) Former deputies and officials of Communist or anarchist organizations.”

Allow me to make a comment, gentlemen. There never were any anarchist organizations represented in parliament, in either of our Chambers; and this paragraph (a) could only refer to former deputies and officials of the Communist organizations, of whom we know, moreover, that some were executed by the Germans as hostages.

“(b) Persons (intellectuals) who have supported the spreading of Communist ideas by word of mouth or writing.

“(c) Persons who have proved by their attitude that they are particularly dangerous.

“(d) Persons who have collaborated in the distribution of leaflets.”

One idea is dominant in this selection: “We must punish the elite.” In conformity with paragraph (b) of this article, we shall see that the Germans shot a great number of intellectuals, including Solomon and Politzer, in 1941 and 1942, in Paris and in the provincial towns.

I shall come back to these executions later when I give you examples of German atrocities committed in relation to the policy of hostages in France.

“2. Following the same directives, a list of hostages is to be prepared from the prisoners with De Gaullist sympathies.

“3. Racial Germans of French nationality who are imprisoned for Communist or anarchist activity may be included in the list. Special attention must be drawn to their German origin on the attached form.

“Persons who have been condemned to death but who have been pardoned, may also be included in the lists. . . .

“5. The lists have to record for each district about 150 persons and for the Greater Paris Command about 300 to 400 people. The district chiefs should always record on their lists those persons who had their last residence or permanent domicile in their districts, because the persons to be executed should, as far as possible, be taken from the district where the act was committed. . . .

“The lists are to be kept up to date. Particular attention is to be paid to new arrests and releases.

“VII. Proposals for executions:

“In case of an incident which necessitates the shooting of hostages, within the meaning of my announcement of 22 August 1941, the district chief in whose territory the incident happened is to select from the list of hostages persons whose execution he wishes to propose to me. In making the selection he must, from the personal as well as local point of view, draw from persons belonging to a circle which presumably includes the guilty.”

I skip a paragraph.

“For execution, only those persons who were already under arrest at the time of the crime may be proposed.

“The proposal must contain the names and number of the persons proposed for execution, that is, in the order in which the choice is recommended.”

And, at the very end of Paragraph VIII, we read:

“When the bodies are buried, the burial of a large number in a common grave in the same cemetery is to be avoided, in order not to create places of pilgrimage which, now or later, might form centers for anti-German propaganda. Therefore, if necessary, burials must be carried out in various places.”

Parallel to this document, concerning France, there exists in Belgium an order of Falkenhausen of 19 September 1941, which you will find on Page 6 of the official report on Belgium, Document Number F-683, which I shall submit as Exhibit Number RF-275.

THE PRESIDENT: Is the Belgian document worded in substantially the same terms as the document you have just read?

M. DUBOST: Exactly.

THE PRESIDENT: Then I do not think you need to read that.

M. DUBOST: As you wish. Then it will not be necessary either to read in entirety the warning of Seyss-Inquart concerning Holland.

I think that by referring to these exhibits in your document book, you will be able to obtain items of evidence which will only confirm what I read to you of Stülpnagel’s order.

For Norway and Denmark there is a teletyped letter from Keitel to the Supreme Command of the Navy, dated 30 November 1944, which you will find in the document book, as Document C-48 (Exhibit Number RF-280). I read the end of Paragraph 1:

“Every ship-yard worker must know that any act of sabotage occurring within his sphere of activity entails for him personally or for his relatives, if he disappears, the most serious consequences.”

Page 2 of Document Number 870-PS (Exhibit Number RF-281):

“4. I have just received a teletype from Field Marshal Keitel requesting the publication of an order according to which the personnel or, if need be, their near relatives (liability of next of kin) will be held collectively responsible for the acts of sabotage occurring in their factories.”

And Terboven, who wrote this sentence, added (and it is he who condemns Marshal Keitel):

“This request only makes sense and will only be successful if I am actually allowed to have executions carried out by shooting.”

All these documents will be submitted.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, do I understand that in Belgium, Holland, in Norway, and in Denmark, there were similar orders or decrees with reference to hostages?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Your Honor, I mean to read those concerning Belgium, Holland, and Norway. For Belgium, for instance, you will find at Page 6, Document Number F-683, which is the official document of the Belgian Ministry of Justice:

“Brussels, 29 November 1945, 1, rue de Turin. Decree of Falkenhausen of 19 September 1941.

“In the future, the population must expect that if attacks are made on members of the German Army or the German Police and the culprits cannot be arrested, a number of hostages proportionate to the gravity of the offense, five at a minimum, will be shot if the attack causes death. All political prisoners in Belgium are, with immediate effect, to be considered as hostages.”

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, I did not want you to read these documents if they are substantially in the same form as the document you have already read.

M. DUBOST: They are more or less in the same form, Your Honor. I shall submit them because they constitute the proof of the systematic repetition of the same methods to obtain the same results, that is, to cause terror to reign in all the occupied countries of the West. But, if the Tribunal considers it constant and established that these methods were systematically used in all the western regions, naturally I shall spare you the reading of documents which are monotonous and which repeat in substance what was said in the document relating to France.

THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps you had better give us references to the documents which concern Belgium, Holland, Norway, and Denmark.

M. DUBOST: Yes, Your Honor, for Belgium, Document F-683, Page 6, decree of Falkenhausen of 19 September 1941, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-275, as constituting the official report of the Kingdom of Belgium against the principal war criminals.

The second document is C-46, corresponding to UK-42 (24 November 1942), submitted as Exhibit Number RF-276.

For Holland, a warning by Seyss-Inquart, Document Number F-224, which you may feel it necessary for me to read, since Seyss-Inquart is one of the defendants. I submit this document under Exhibit Number RF-279, and I quote:

“For the destruction or the damaging of railway installations, telephone cables, and post offices I shall make responsible all the inhabitants of the community on whose territory the act is committed.

“The population of these communities must expect that reprisals will be taken against private property and that houses or whole blocks will be destroyed.”

THE PRESIDENT: I am afraid I don’t know where you are reading. Which paragraph are you reading?

M. DUBOST: I am told, Mr. President, that this document has not been bound with the Dutch report; I shall file it at the end of the hearing, if I may.


M. DUBOST: I quote now another document, the warning of Seyss-Inquart to Holland.

THE PRESIDENT: And that is what number?

M. DUBOST: Number 152 in your document book, concerning German justice, which will be submitted at the hearing tomorrow.

For Norway and Denmark we have several documents which establish that the same policy of execution of hostages was followed. We have, in particular, Document C-48 (Exhibit Number RF-280) from which I read a short time ago.

All those special orders for each of the occupied regions of the West are the result of the general order of Keitel, which my American colleagues have already read and on which I merely gave a comment this morning. The responsibility of Keitel in the development of the policy of execution of hostages is total. He was given warning; German generals even told him that this policy went beyond the aim pursued and might become dangerous.

On 16 September 1942, General Falkenhausen addressed a letter to him, from which I extract the following passage—it is Document Number 1594-PS, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-283:

“Enclosed is a list of the shootings of hostages which have taken place until now in my area and the incidents on account of which these shootings took place.

“In a great number of cases, particularly in the most serious, the perpetrators were later apprehended and sentenced.

“This result is undoubtedly very unsatisfactory. The effect is not so much deterrent as destructive of the feeling of the population for right and security; the cleft between the people influenced by communism and the remainder of the population is being bridged; all circles are becoming filled with a feeling of hatred toward the occupying forces and effective inciting material is given to enemy propaganda. Thereby military danger and general political reaction of an entirely unwanted nature. . . .”—Signed—“Von Falkenhausen.”

I shall now present Document Number 1587-PS from the same German general and he seems to be lucid:

“In addition I wish once more to point out the following:

“In several cases the authors of aggression or acts of sabotage were discovered when the hostages had already been shot, shortly after the criminal acts had been committed, according to the instructions received. Moreover, the real culprits often did not belong to the same circles as the executed hostages. Undoubtedly in such cases the execution of hostages does not inspire terror in the population but indifference to repressive measures and even resentment on the part of some sections of the population who until then had displayed a passive attitude. The result for the occupying power is therefore negative as planned and intended by the English agents, who were often the instigators of these acts. It will therefore be necessary to prolong the delay in cases where the arrest of the culprits may yet be expected. I therefore request that you leave to me the responsibility for fixing such delays, in order that the greatest possible success in the fight against terrorist acts may be obtained.”

THE PRESIDENT: Is it known what the date of that document was?

M. DUBOST: It is after the 16th of September 1941. We do not have the exact date. The document is appended to another document, the date of which is illegible; but it is after Keitel’s order since it gives an account of the executions of hostages, carried out in compliance with that order. It points out that after the execution of the hostages the culprits were found; that the effect was deplorable and aroused the resentment of some of the population.

You will find also in this Document Number 1587-PS—but this time an extract from the monthly report of the Commander of the Wehrmacht in the Netherlands—the report for the month of August 1942, a new warning to Keitel:

“B. Special events and the political situation:

“On the occasion of an attempt against a train of soldiers on furlough due to arrive in Rotterdam, a Dutch railway guard was seriously wounded by touching a wire connected with an explosive charge, thus causing an explosion. The following repressive measures were announced in the Dutch press:

“The deadline for the arrest of the perpetrators, with collaboration of the population, is fixed at 14 August, midnight. A reward of 100,000 florins will be made for a denunciation, which will be treated confidentially. If the culprits are not arrested within the time appointed, arrests of hostages are threatened; railway lines will be guarded by Dutchmen.

“Since, despite this summons, the perpetrator did not report and was not otherwise discovered, the following hostages, among whom some had already been in custody for several weeks as hostages, were shot on the order of the Higher SS and Police Führer.”

I will pass over the enumeration of the names. I omit the next paragraph.

THE PRESIDENT: Could you read the names and the titles?

M. DUBOST: “Ruys, Willem, Director General, Rotterdam; Count E.O.G. Van Limburg-Stirum, Arnhem; M. Baelde, Robert, Doctor of Law, Rotterdam; Bennenkers, Christoffel, former Inspector General of the Police at Rotterdam; Baron Alexander Schimmelpennink Van der Oye, Noordgouwe (Seeland).” One paragraph further on:

“Public opinion was particularly affected by the execution of these hostages. Reports at hand express the opinion that, from the beginning of the occupation, no stroke inflicted by the Germans was more deeply felt. Many anonymous letters, and even some signed ones, sent to the Commander of the Wehrmacht, who was considered as responsible for this ‘unheard of event,’ show the varied reactions of the mass of the Dutch people. From the bitterest insults to apparently pious petitions and prayers not to resort to extremes, no nuance was lacking which did not in one way or another indicate, to say the least, complete disapproval and misunderstanding, first of the threat, and secondly of the actual execution of the hostages. Reproaches for this most severe infraction of law (which were based on serious argument and often gave rise to thought), and also cries of despair from idealists who, in spite of all that had occurred in the political sphere, had still believed in German-Dutch understanding but now saw all was at an end—all this was found in the correspondence. In addition, the objection was raised that such methods were only doing the work of the Communists, who as the real instigators of active sabotage must be very glad to couple with their achievements the pleasure of the elimination of ‘such hostages.’

“In short, such disapproval even in the ranks of the very few really pro-German Dutch had never before been noticed, so much hatred at one time had never been felt.”—signed—“Schneider, Captain.”

Despite these warnings proffered by conscientious subordinates, neither the General Staff nor Keitel ever gave any order to the contrary. The order of 16 September 1941 always remained in force. When I have shown you examples of executions of hostages in France, you will see that a number of facts which I shall utilize are dated 1942, 1943 and even 1944.

THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps we had better adjourn now.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

MARSHAL: If Your Honor please, the Defendants Kaltenbrunner and Streicher will continue to be absent during this afternoon’s session.

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Dubost, the Tribunal had some difficulty this morning in following the documents that you were citing; and also, the Tribunal understands the interpreters had some difficulty because the document books, except the one that is before me, have no indications of the “PS” or other numbers; and the documents themselves are not numbered in order. Therefore it is extremely difficult for members of the Tribunal to find documents, and it is also extremely difficult for the interpreters to find any document which may be before them.

So, this afternoon, it will be appreciated if you will be so kind as to indicate what the document is, and then give both the interpreters and the Tribunal enough time in which they may find the document, and then indicate exactly which part of the document you are going to read, that is to say, whether it is the beginning of the document, or the first paragraph, or the second, and so on. But you must bear with us if we find some difficulty in following you in the documents.

M. DUBOST: Very well, Your Honor.

I had finished this morning presenting the general rules which prevailed during the five years of occupation in the matter of the execution of numerous hostages in the occupied countries of the West. I brought you the evidence, by reading a series of official German documents, that the highest authorities of the Army, of the Party, and of the Nazi Government had deliberately chosen to practice a terroristic policy through the seizure of hostages.

Before passing to the examination of a few particular cases, it seems to me to be necessary to say exactly wherein this policy consisted, in the light of the texts which I have quoted.

According to the circumstances, people belonging by choice or ethnically to the vanquished nations were apprehended and held as a guarantee for the maintenance of order in a given sector; or after a given incident of which the enemy army had been the victim. They were apprehended and held with a view to obtaining the execution by the vanquished population of acts determined by the occupying authority, such as denunciation, payment of collective fines, the handing over of perpetrators of assaults committed against the German Army, and the handing over of political adversaries; and these persons thus arrested were often massacred subsequently by way of reprisal.

An idea emerges from methods of this kind, namely, that the hostage, who is a human being, becomes a special security subjected to seizure as determined by the enemy. How contrary this is to the rule of individual liberty and human dignity. All the members of the German Government are jointly responsible for this iniquitous concept and for its application in our vanquished countries. No member of the German Government can throw this responsibility on to subordinates by claiming that they merely executed clearly stated orders with an excess of zeal.

I have shown you that upon many occasions, on the contrary, the persons who carried out the orders reported to the chiefs the moral consequences resulting from the application of the terroristic policy of hostages. And we know that in no case were contrary orders given. We know that the original orders were always maintained.

I shall not endeavor to enumerate in their totality all the cases of executions of hostages. For our country, France, alone, there were 29,660 executed. This is proved in Document Number F-420, dated Paris, 21 December 1945, the original of which will be submitted under Exhibit Number RF-266 to your Tribunal. It is at the beginning of the document book, the second document. There in detail, region by region, the number is given of the hostages who were executed.

“Region of: Lille, 1,143; Laon, 222; Rouen, 658; Angers, 863; Orléans, 501; Reims, 353; Dijon, 1,691; Poitiers, 82; Strasbourg, 211; Rennes, 974; Limoges, 2,863; Clermont-Ferrand, 441; Lyons, 3,674; Marseilles, 1,513; Montpellier, 785; Toulouse, 765; Bordeaux, 806; Nancy, 571; Metz, 220; Paris, 11,000; Nice, 324; total, 29,660.”

I shall limit my presentation to a few typical cases of executions which unveil the political plan of the General Staff which prescribed these executions—plans of terror, plans that were intended to create and accentuate the division between Frenchmen, or, more generally, between citizens of the occupied countries. You will find in your document book a file quoted as F-133, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-288. This is called “Posters Concerning Paris.” At the head of the page you will read, Pariser Zeitung supplement. This document reproduces a few of the very numerous posters and bills, some of the numerous notices inserted in the press from 1940 to 1945 announcing the arrest of hostages in Paris, in the Paris district, and in France. I shall read only one of these documents, which you will find on the second page, entitled Number 6, 19 September 1941. You will see in it an appeal to informers, an appeal to traitors; you will see in it a means of corruption, which systematically applied to all the countries of the West for years; all tended to demoralize them to an equal extent:

“Appeal to the population of occupied territories.

“On 21 August a German soldier was fired on and killed by cowardly murderers. In consequence I ordered on 23 August that hostages be taken, and threatened to have a certain number of them shot in case such an assault should be repeated.

“New crimes have obliged me to put this threat into execution. In spite of this, new assaults have taken place.

“I recognize that the great majority of the population is conscious of its duty, which is to help the authorities in their unremitting effort to maintain calm and order in the country in the interest of this population.”

And here is the appeal to informers:

“But among you there are agents paid by powers hostile to Germany, Communist criminal elements who have only one aim, which is to sow discord between the occupying power and the French population. These elements are completely indifferent to the consequences, affecting the entire population, which result from their activity.

“I will no longer allow the lives of German soldiers to be threatened by these murderers. I shall stop at no measure, however rigorous, in order to fulfill my duty.

“But it is likewise my duty to make the whole population responsible for the fact that, up to the present, it has not yet been possible to lay hands on the cowardly murderers and to impose upon them the penalty which they deserve.

“That is why I have found it necessary, first of all for Paris, to take measures which, unfortunately, will hinder the everyday life of the entire population. Frenchmen, it depends on you whether I am obliged to render these measures more severe or whether they can be suspended again.

“I appeal to you all, to your administration and to your police, to co-operate by your extreme vigilance and your active personal intervention in the arrest of the guilty. It is necessary, by anticipating and denouncing these criminal activities, to avoid the creation of a critical situation which would plunge the country into misfortune.

“He who fires in ambush on German soldiers, who are doing only their duty here and who are safeguarding the maintenance of a normal life, is not a patriot but a cowardly assassin and the enemy of all decent people.

“Frenchmen! I count on you to understand these measures which I am taking in your own interests also.”—Signed—“Von Stülpnagel.”

Numerous notices follow which all have to do with executions.

Under Number 8 on the following page you will find a list of twelve names among which are three of the best known lawyers of the Paris Bar, who are characterized as militant Communists, Messrs. Pitard, Hajje and Rolnikas.

In file 21 submitted by my colleague, M. Gerthoffer, in the course of his economic presentation, you will find a few notices which are similar, published in the German official journal VOBIF.

You will observe, in connection with this notice of 16 September announcing the execution or rather, the murder, of M. Pitard and his companions, that the murderers had neither the courage nor the honesty to say that they were all Parisian lawyers. Was it by mistake? I think that it was a calculated lie, for at this time it was necessary to handle the elite gently. The occupying power still hoped to separate them from the people of France.

I shall describe to you in detail two cases which spread grief in the hearts of the French in the course of the month of October 1941 and which have remained present in the memory of all my compatriots. They are known as the “executions of Châteaubriant and of Bordeaux.” They are related in Document Number F-415 in your document book, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-285.

After the attack on two German officers at Nantes on 20 October 1941 and in Bordeaux a few days later, the German Army decided to make an example. You will find, on Page 22 of Document Number F-415, a copy of the notice in the newspaper Le Phare of 21 October 1941.

“Notice. Cowardly criminals in the pay of England and of Moscow killed, with shots in the back, the Feldkommandant of Nantes on the morning of 20 October 1941. Up to now the assassins have not been arrested.

“As expiation for this crime I have ordered that 50 hostages be shot to begin with. Because of the gravity of the crime, 50 more hostages will be shot in case the guilty should not be arrested between now and 23 October 1941 by midnight.”

The conditions under which these reprisals were exercised are worth describing in detail. Stülpnagel, who was commanding the German troops in France, ordered the Minister of the Interior to designate prisoners. These prisoners were to be selected among the Communists who were considered the most dangerous (these are the terms of Stülpnagel’s order). A list of 60 Frenchmen was furnished by the Minister of the Interior. This was Pucheu. He has since been tried by my compatriots, sentenced to death, and executed.

The Subprefect of Châteaubriant sent a letter to the Kommandantur of Châteaubriant, in reply to the order which he received from the Minister of the Interior:

“Following our conversation of today, I have the honor of confirming to you that the Minister of the Interior has communicated today with General Von Stülpnagel in order to designate to him the most dangerous Communist prisoners among those who are now held at Châteaubriant. You will find enclosed herewith the list of 60 individuals who have been handed over this day.”

On the following page is the German order:

“Because of the assassination of the Feldkommandant of Nantes, Lieutenant Colonel Hotz, on 20 October 1941, the following Frenchmen, who were already imprisoned as hostages in accordance with my publication of 22 August 1941 and of my ordinance to the Plenipotentiary General of the French Government of 19 September 1941, are to be shot.”

In the following pages you will find a list of all the men who were shot on that day. I leave out the reading of the list in order not to lengthen the proceedings unduly.

On Page 16 you will find a list of 48 names. On Page 13 you will find the list of those who were shot in Nantes. On Page 12 you will find the list of those who were shot in Châteaubriant. Their bodies were distributed for burial to all the surrounding communes.

I shall read to you the testimony of eyewitnesses as to how they were buried after having been shot. On Page 3 of this document you will find the note of M. Dumenil concerning the executions of 21 October 1941, which was written the day after these executions. The second paragraph reads:

“The priest was called at 11:30 to the prison of La Fayette. An officer, probably of the GFP, told him that he was to announce to certain prisoners that they were going to be shot. The priest was then locked up in a room with the 13 hostages who were at the prison. The other three, who were at les Rochettes, were ministered to by Abbé Théon, professor at the College Stanislas.

“The Abbé Fontaine said to the condemned, ‘Gentlemen, you must understand, alas, what my presence means.’ He then spoke with the prisoners collectively and individually for the two hours which the officers had said would be granted to arrange the personal affairs of the condemned and to write their last messages to their families.

“The execution had been fixed for 2 o’clock in the afternoon, half an hour having been allowed for the journey. But the two hours went by, another hour passed, and still another hour before the condemned were sent for. Certain of them, optimists by nature, like M. Fourny, already hoped that a countermanding order would be given, in which the priest himself did not at all believe.

“The condemned were all very brave. It was two of the youngest, Gloux and Grolleau, who were students, who constantly encouraged the others, saying that it was better to die in this way than to perish uselessly in an accident.

“At the moment of leaving, the priest, for reasons which were not explained to him, was not authorized to accompany the hostages to the place of execution. He went down the stairs of the prison with them as far as the car. They were chained together in twos. The thirteenth had on handcuffs. Once they were in the truck, Gloux and Grolleau made another gesture of farewell to him, smiling and waving their hands that were chained together.

“Signed: Dumenil, Counsellor attached to the Cabinet.”

Sixteen were shot in Nantes. Twenty-seven were shot in Châteaubriant. Five were shot outside the department. For those who were shot in Châteaubriant, we know what their last moments were like. The Abbé Moyon, who was present, wrote on 22 October 1941 the account of this execution. This is the third paragraph, Page 17 of your document:

“It was on a beautiful autumn day. The temperature was particularly mild. There had been lovely sunshine since morning. Everyone in town was going about his usual business. There was great animation in the town for it was Wednesday, which was market day. The population knew from the newspapers and from the information it had received from Nantes that a superior officer had been killed in a street in Nantes but refused to believe that such savage and extensive reprisals would be applied. At Choisel Camp the German authorities had, for some days, put into special quarters a certain number of men who were to serve as hostages in case of special difficulties. It was from among these men that those who were to be shot on this evening of 22 October 1941 were chosen.

“The Curé of Béré was finishing his lunch when M. Moreau Chief of Choisel Camp presented himself. In a few words the latter explained to him the object of his visit. Having been delegated by M. Lecornu, the subprefect of Châteaubriant, he had come to inform him that 27 men selected among the political prisoners of Choisel were going to be executed that afternoon; and he asked Monsieur Le Curé to go immediately to attend them. The priest said he was ready to accomplish this mission, and he went to the prisoners without delay.

“When the priest appeared to carry out his mission, the subprefect was already among the condemned. He came to announce the horrible fate which was awaiting them, asking them to write letters of farewell to their families without delay. It was under these circumstances that the priest presented himself at the entrance to the quarters.”

You will find on Page 19 the “departure for the execution,” Paragraph 4:

“Suddenly there was the sound of automobile engines. The door, which I had shut at the beginning so that we might be more private, was abruptly opened and French constables carrying handcuffs appeared. A German officer arrived. He was actually a chaplain. He said to me, ‘Monsieur le Curé, your mission has been accomplished and you must withdraw immediately.’ ”

At the bottom of the page, the last paragraph:

“Access to the quarry where the execution took place was absolutely forbidden to all Frenchmen. I only know that the condemned were executed in three groups of nine men, that all the men who were shot refused to have their eyes bound, that young Mocquet fainted and fell, and that the last cry which sprang from the lips of these heroes was an ardent ‘Vive la France.’ ”

On Page 21 of the same document you will find the declaration of Police Officer Roussel. It is also worth reading:

“The 22 October 1941 at about 3:30 in the afternoon, I happened to be in the Rue du 11 Novembre at Châteaubriant, and I saw coming from Choisel Camp four or five German trucks, I cannot say exactly how many, preceded by an automobile in which was a German officer. Several civilians with handcuffs were in the trucks and were singing patriotic songs, the ‘Marseillaise,’ the ‘Chant du Depart,’ and so forth. One of the trucks was filled with armed German soldiers.

“I learned subsequently that these were hostages who had just been fetched from Choisel Camp to be taken to the quarry of Sablière on the Soudan Road to be shot in reprisal for the murder at Nantes of the German Colonel Hotz.

“About two hours later these same trucks came back from the quarry and drove into the court of the Châteaubriant, where the bodies of the men who had been shot were deposited in a cellar until coffins could be made.

“Coming back from the quarry the trucks were covered and no noise was heard, but a trickle of blood escaped from them and left a trail on the road from the quarry to the castle.

“The following day, on the 23rd of October, the bodies of the men who had been shot were put into coffins without any French persons being present, the entrances to the château having been guarded by German sentinels. The dead were then taken to nine different cemeteries in the surrounding communes, that is, three coffins to each commune. The Germans were careful to choose communes where there was no regular transport service, presumably to avoid the population going en masse to the graves of these martyrs.

“I was not present at the departure of the hostages from the camp nor at the shooting in the quarry of Sablière, as the approaches to it were guarded by German soldiers armed with machine guns.”

Almost at the same time, in addition to these 48 hostages who were shot, there were others—those of Bordeaux. You will find in your document book, under Document Number F-400, documents which have been sent to us by the Prefecture of the Gironde, which we submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-286.

One of them comes from the Bordeaux Section of Political Affairs, and is dated 22 October 1941, Document F-400(b).

“In the course of the conference, which took place last night at the Feldkommandantur of Bordeaux, the German authorities asked me to proceed immediately to arrest 100 individuals known for their sympathy with the Communist Party or the Gaullist movement, who will be considered as hostages, and to make a great number of house searches.

“These operations have been in process since this morning. So far no interesting result has been called to my attention. In addition, this morning at 11 o’clock the German authorities informed me of the reprisal measures which they had decided to take against the population.”

These reprisal measures you will find set forth on Page “A” of the same document in a letter addressed by General Von Faber Du Faur, Chief of the Regional Administration of Bordeaux, to the Prefect of the Gironde. I quote:

“Bordeaux, 23 October 1941.

“To the Prefect of the Gironde, Bordeaux.

“As expiation for the cowardly murder of the Councillor of War, Reimers, the Military Commander in France has ordered 50 hostages to be executed. The execution will take place tomorrow.

“In case the murderers should not be arrested in the very near future, additional measures will be taken, as in the case of Nantes.

“I have the honor of making this decision known to you.

“Chief of the Military Regional Administration,”—signed—“Von Faber Du Faur.”

And in execution of this order, 50 men were shot. There is a famous place in the surburbs of Paris which has become a place of pilgrimage for the French since our liberation. It is the Fort of Romainville. During the occupation the Germans converted this fort into a hostage depot from which they selected victims when they wanted to take revenge after some patriotic demonstration. It is from Romainville that Professors Jacques Solomon, Decourtemanche, Georges Politzer, Dr. Boer and six other Frenchmen departed. They had been arrested in March 1942, tortured by the Gestapo, then executed without trial in the month of May 1942, because they refused to renounce their faith.

On 19 August 1942, 96 hostages left this fort, among them M. Le Gall, a municipal councillor of Paris. They left the fort of Romainville, were transferred to Mont-Valérien and executed.

In September 1942 an assault had been made against some German soldiers at the Rex cinema in Paris. General Von Stülpnagel issued a proclamation announcing that, because of this assault, he had caused 116 hostages to be shot and that extensive measures of deportation were to be taken. You will find an extract from this newspaper in Document Number F-402(b) (Exhibit Number RF-287).

The notice was worded as follows:

“As a result of assaults committed by Communist agents and terrorists in the pay of England, German soldiers and French civilians have been killed or wounded.

“As reprisal for these assaults I have had 116 Communist terrorists shot, whose participation or implication in terroristic acts has been proved by confessions.

“In addition, severe measures of repression have been taken. In order to prevent incidents on the occasion of demonstrations planned by the Communists for 20 September 1942, I ordered the following:

“1) From Saturday, 19 September 1942, from 3 o’clock in the afternoon, until Sunday, 20 September 1942, at midnight, all theaters, cinemas, cabarets, and other places of amusement reserved for the French population shall be closed in the Departments of the Seine, Seine-et-Oise, and Seine-et-Marne. All public demonstrations, including sports, are forbidden.

“2) On Sunday, 20 September 1942, from 3 o’clock in the afternoon until midnight, non-German civilians are forbidden to walk about in the streets and public places in the Departments of the Seine, Seine-et-Oise, and Seine-et-Marne. The only exceptions are persons representing official services. . . .”

In actual fact, it was only on the day of 20 September that 46 of these hostages were chosen from the list of 116. The Germans handed newspapers of 20 September to the prisoners of Romainville, announcing the decision of the Military High Command. It was, therefore, through the newspapers that the prisoners of Romainville learned that a certain number of them would be chosen at the end of the afternoon to be led before the firing squad.

All lived through that day awaiting the call that would be made that evening. Those who were called knew their fate beforehand. All died innocent of the crimes for which they were being executed, for those who were responsible for the assault in the Rex cinema were arrested a few days later.

It was in Bordeaux that the 70 other hostages of the total of 116 announced by General Von Stülpnagel were executed. In reprisal for the murder of Ritter, the German official of the Labor Front, 50 other hostages were shot at the end of September 1943 in Paris. Here is a reprint of the newspaper article which announced these executions to the French people—Document Number F-402(c).

“Reprisals against terroristic acts. Assaults and acts of sabotage have increased in France recently. For this reason 50 terrorists, convicted of having participated in acts of sabotage and of terrorism, were shot on 2 October 1943 by order of the German authorities.”

All these facts concerning the hostages of Romainville have been related to us by one of the rare survivors, M. Rabaté, a mechanic living at 69 Rue de la Tombe-Issiore, Paris, whose testimony was taken by one of our collaborators.

In this testimony—Document Number F-402(a), which has already been submitted as Exhibit Number RF-287—we read the following:

“There were 70 of us, including Professor Jacques Solomon, Decourtemanche and Georges Politzer, Dr. Boer, and Messrs. Engros, Dudach, Cadras, Dalidet, Golue, Pican who were shot in the month of May 1942, and an approximately equal number of women.

“Some of us were transferred to the German quarter of the Santé (a prison in Paris), but the majority of us were taken to the military prison of Cherche-Midi (in Paris). We were questioned in turn by a Gestapo officer in the offices of the Rue des Saussaies. Some of us, especially Politzer and Solomon, were tortured to such an extent that their limbs were broken, according to the testimony of their wives.

“Moreover, while questioning me, the Gestapo officer confirmed this to me: I repeat his words:

“ ‘Rabaté, here you will have to speak. Professor Langevin’s son-in-law, Jacques Solomon, came in here arrogant. He went out crawling.’

“After a short stay of 5 months in the prison of Cherche-Midi, in the course of which we learned of the execution as hostages of the 10 prisoners already mentioned, we were transferred on 24 August 1942 to the Fort of Romainville.

“It is to be noted that from the day of our arrest we were forbidden to write, or to receive mail, or inform our families where we were. On the doors of our cells was written, ‘Alles verboten’ (‘Everything is forbidden’). We received only the strict food ration of the prison, namely, three-fourths of a liter of vegetable soup and 200 grams of black bread per day. The biscuits sent to the prison for political prisoners by the Red Cross or by the Quakers’ Association were not given to us because of this prohibition.

“In the Fort of Romainville we were interned as ‘isolated prisoners,’ an expression corresponding to the ‘NN’ (Nacht und Nebel), which we knew about in Germany.”

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, the Tribunal thinks that, unless there is anything very special that you wish to read in any of these documents, they have already heard the number of the hostages who were put to death and they think that it really does not add to it—the actual details of these documents.

M. DUBOST: I thought, Mr. President, that I had not spoken to you of the regime to which men were subjected when they were prisoners of the German Army. I thought that it was my duty to enlighten the Tribunal on the condition of these men in the German prisons.

I thought that it was also my duty to enlighten the Tribunal on the ill-treatment inflicted by the Gestapo, who left the son-in-law of Professor Langevin with his limbs broken. Moreover that is found in a testimony.

THE PRESIDENT: Certainly, if there are matters of that sort which you think it right to go into, you must do so; but the actual details of individual shooting of hostages we think you might, at any rate, summarize. But if there are particular atrocities which you wish to draw our attention to, by all means do so.

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, I have only given two examples of executions out of the multiple executions which caused 29,660 deaths in my country.

THE PRESIDENT: Go on, M. Dubost.

M. DUBOST: In the region of the North of France, which was administratively attached to Belgium and subjected to the authority of General Von Falkenhausen, the same policy of execution was practiced. You will find in Document Number F-133, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-289, copies of a great number of posters announcing either arrests, executions, or deportations. Certain of these posters include, moreover, an appeal to informers, and they are analogous to those which I read to you in connection with France. Perhaps it would be well, nevertheless, to point out the one that you will find on Page 3, which concerns the execution of 20 Frenchmen, ordered as the result of a theft; that on Page 4, which concerns the execution of 15 Frenchmen, ordered as a result of an attack against a railroad installation; and finally, especially the last, the one that you will find on Pages 8 and 9, which announces that executions will be carried out, and invites the civilian population to hand over the guilty ones, if they know them, to the German Army.

As concerns especially the countries of the West other than France, we have a very great number of identical cases. You will find in your document book, under Document Number F-680, Exhibit Number RF-290, a copy of a poster by the Military Commander-in-Chief for Belgium and the North of France, which announces the arrest in Tournai, on 18 September 1941, of 25 inhabitants as hostages, and specifies the condition under which certain of them will be shot if the guilty are not discovered. But you will find especially, under the Number F-680(a) a remarkable document; it comes from the German authorities themselves. It is the secret report of the German Chief of Police in Belgium dated 13 December 1944, that is to say, when Belgium was totally liberated and this German official wished to give an account to his chiefs of his services during the occupation of Belgium.

From the first page of this document we take the following passage:

“The increasing incitement of the population, by enemy radio and enemy press, to acts of terrorism and sabotage”—this is applied to Belgium—“the passive attitude of the population, particularly that of the Belgian administration, the complete failure of the public prosecutors, the examining judges, and of the police to disclose and prevent terrorist acts, have finally led to preventive and repressive measures of the most rigorous kind, that is to say, to the execution of persons closely related to the culprits.

“Already on 19 October 1941, on the occasion of the murder of two police officials in Tournai, the Military Commander-in-Chief declared through an announcement appearing in the press that all the political prisoners in Belgium would be considered as hostages with immediate effect. In the provinces of the north of France, subject to the jurisdiction of the same Military Commander-in-Chief, this ordinance was already in force as from 26 August 1941. Through repeated notices appearing in the press the civilian population has been informed that political prisoners taken as hostages will be executed if the murders continue to be committed.

“As a result of the assassination of Teughels, Rexist major of Charleroi, and other attempts at assassination of public officials, the Military Commander-in-Chief has been obliged to order, for the first time in Belgium, the execution of eight terrorists. The date of the execution is 27 November 1942.”

On the following page of this same document—Number F-680(b)—you will find another order dated 22 April 1944, secret, and issued by the Military Commander in Belgium and the North of France, concerning measures of reprisal for the murder of two Walloon SS, who had fought at Tcherkassy; five hostages were shot on that day.

On the following page nine hostages are added to these five, and still a tenth on the next page. Then five others on the following page.

You will find, finally, on the next to the last page of the document, a proposed list of persons to be shot in reprisal for the murder of SS men. Compare the dates, and judge the ferocity with which the assassination of these two Walloon traitors, SS volunteers, was revenged.

Finally, you will see the names of the 20 Belgian patriots who were thus murdered.

“Nouveau Journal, 25 April 1944.

“Measures of reprisal for the murder of men who fought at Tcherkassy.

“Announcement by the German authorities:

“The perpetrators of the assassination on 6 April of the members of the SS Sturmbrigade Wallonie, Hubert Stassen and François Musch, who fought at Tcherkassy, have so far not been apprehended. Therefore, in accordance with the communication dated 10 April 1944, the 20 terrorists whose names follow have been executed:

“Renatus Dierickx of Louvain; François Boets of Louvain; Antoine Smets of Louvain; Jacques Van Tilt of Holsbeek; Emiliens Van Tilt of Holsbeek; Franciskus Aerts of Herent; Jan Van der Elst of Herent; Gustave Morren of Louvain; Eugene Hupin of Chapelle-lez-Herlaimont; Pierre Leroy of Boussois; Léon Hermann of Montignies-sur-Sambre; Felix Trousson of Chaudfontaine; Joseph Grab of Tirlemont; Octave Wintgens of Baelen-Hontem; Stanislaw Mrozowski of Grâce-Berleur; Marcel Boeur of Athus; Marcel Dehon of Ghlin; André Croquelois of Pont des Briques, near Boulogne; Gustave Hos of Mons; and the stateless Jew, Walter Kriss of Herent.”

THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now for 10 minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

M. DUBOST: As far as the other western countries, Holland and Norway, are concerned, we have received documents which we submit as Document Number F-224(b), Exhibits RF-291, 292, and 293.

In the French text you will find a long list of civilians who were executed. Also you will find a report of the Chief of the Criminal Police, Munt, in connection with these executions, and you will observe that Munt tries to prove his own innocence, in my opinion without success. This is in Document Number RF-277, already submitted.

On Page 6 you will find the report of an investigation concerning mass executions carried out by the Germans in Holland. I do not think it is necessary to read this report. It brings no new factual element and simply illustrates the thesis that I have been presenting since this morning: That in all the western countries the German military authorities systematically carried out executions of hostages as reprisals for acts of resistance. You will see that on 7 March 1945 an order was given to shoot 80 prisoners, and the authority who gave this order said, “I don’t care where you get your prisoners”—execution without any designation of age or profession or origin.

The Tribunal will see that a total of 2,080 executions was reached. It will be noted that as a reprisal for the murder of an SS soldier, a house was destroyed and 10 Dutchmen were executed; and in addition, two other houses were destroyed. In another case 10 Dutchmen were executed. Altogether, 3,000 Dutchmen were executed under these conditions, according to the testimony of this document, which was drawn up by the War Crimes Commission, signed by the Chief of the Dutch Delegation to the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Colonel Baron Van Tuyll van Serooskerken.

This document gives to the Tribunal the approximate number of victims, region by region.

I do not wish to conclude the statement as to hostages concerning Holland without drawing the attention of the Tribunal to Section (b) of Document Number F-224, which gives a long list of hostages, prisoners or dead, arrested by the Germans in Holland; for the Tribunal will observe that most of the hostages were intellectuals or very highly placed personages in Holland. We note, therein, the names of members of parliament, lawyers, senators, Protestant clergymen, judges, and amongst them we find a former Minister of Justice. The arrests were made systematically among the intellectual elite of the country.

As far as Norway is concerned, the Tribunal will find in Document Number F-240, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-292, a short report of the executions which the Germans carried out in that country:

“On 26 April 1942 two German policemen who tried to arrest two Norwegian patriots were killed on an island on the west coast of Norway. In order to avenge them, 4 days later 18 young men were shot without trial. All these 18 Norwegians had been in prison since the 22 February of the same year and therefore had nothing to do with this affair.”

In the first paragraph of the French translation in the French document book, which is Page 22 of the Norwegian original, it states that:

“On 6 October 1942, 10 Norwegian citizens were executed in reprisal for attempts at sabotage.

“On 20 July 1944 an indeterminate number of Norwegians were shot without trial. They had all been taken from a concentration camp. The reason for this arrest and execution is unknown.

“Finally, after the German capitulation, the bodies of 44 Norwegian citizens were found in graves. All had been shot and we do not know the reason for their execution. It has never been published, and we do not believe they were tried. The executions were effected by a shot through the back of the neck or a revolver bullet through the ear, the hands of the victims being tied behind their backs.”

This information is given by the Norwegian Government for this Tribunal.

I draw the attention of the Tribunal to a final document, Number R-134 (Exhibit Number RF-293), signed by Terboven, which concerns the execution of 18 Norwegians who were taken prisoners for having made an illegal attempt to reach England.

It is by thousands and tens of thousands that in all the western countries citizens were executed without trial in reprisal for acts in which they never participated. It does not seem necessary to me to multiply these examples. Each of these examples involves individual responsibility which is not within the competency of this Tribunal. The examples are only of interest in so far as they show that the orders of the defendants were carried out and notably the orders of Keitel.

I believe that I have amply proved this. It is incontestable that in every case the German Army was concerned with these executions, which were not solely carried out by the police or the SS.

Moreover, they did not achieve the results expected. Far from reducing the number of attacks, it increased them. Each attempt was followed by an execution of hostages, and every shooting of hostages occasioned more attacks in revenge. Generally the announcement of new executions of hostages plunged the countries into a stupor and forced every citizen to become conscious of the fate of his land, despite the efforts of German propaganda. Faced with the failure of this terroristic policy, one might have thought that the defendants would modify their methods. Far from modifying them, they intensified them. I shall endeavor to show the activity of the police and the law from the time when, the policy of hostages having failed, it was necessary to appeal to the German police in order to keep the occupied countries in a state of servitude. The German authorities made arbitrary arrests at all times and from the very beginning of the occupation; but with the failure of the policy of executing hostages, which was—as you remember—commented upon by General Von Falkenhausen in the case of Belgium, arbitrary arrests increased to the point of becoming a constant practice substituted for that of killing hostages.

We submit to the Tribunal Document Number 715-PS, Exhibit Number RF-294. This document concerns the arrest of high-ranking officers who were to be transferred to Germany in honorable custody:

“Subject: Measures to be taken against French Officers.

“In agreement with the German Embassy in Paris and with the Chief of the Security Police and the SD, the Supreme Commander in the West has made the following proposals:

“1. The senior officers enumerated below will be arrested and transferred to Germany in honorable custody: “Generals of the Army: Frère”—who died subsequently in Germany after his deportation—“Gérodias, Cartier, Revers, De Lattre de Tassigny, Fornel de la Laurencie, Robert de Saint-Vincent, Laure, Doyen, Pisquendar, Mittelhauser, Paquin;

“Generals of the Air Force: Bouscat, Carayon, De Geffrier, D’Harcourt, Mouchard, Mendigal, Rozoy;

“Colonels: Loriot and Fonck.

“It is a question of generals whose names have a propaganda value in France and abroad or whose attitude and abilities represent a danger.

“2. Moreover, we have chosen from the index of officers kept by the ‘Arbeitsstab’ in France about 120 officers who have distinguished themselves by their anti-German attitude during the last two years. The SD has also given a list of about 130 officers previously accused. After the compilation of these two lists, the arrest of these officers is to be arranged at a later date, depending on the situation . . . .

“6. In the case of all officers of the French Army of the Armistice, the Chief of the Security Police, in collaboration with the Supreme Command West, will appoint a special day for the whole territory for a check to be made by the police of domiciles and occupations.”

And here are the most important passages:

“As a measure of reprisal, families of suspected persons who have already shown themselves to be resistants or who might become so in the future, will be transferred as internees to Germany or to the territory of eastern France. For these the question of billeting and surveillance must first of all be solved. Afterwards we contemplate as a later measure the deprivation of their French nationality and the confiscation of property, already carried out in other cases by Laval.”

The police and the army were involved in all of these arrests. A telegram in cipher shows that the Minister of Foreign Affairs himself was concerned in the matter. Document Number 723-PS, which becomes Exhibit Number RF-295, will be read in this connection. It is the third document of the document book. It is addressed to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and is dated Paris, 5 June 1943:

“In the course of the conference which took place yesterday with the representatives of the High Command West and the SD, the following was agreed on concerning measures to be taken:

“The aim of these measures must be to prevent, by precautionary measures, the escape from France of any more well-known soldiers and at the same time to prevent these personages from organizing a resistance movement in the event of an attempted landing in France by the Anglo-Saxon powers.

“The circle of officers here concerned comprises all who, by their rank and experience or by their name, would considerably strengthen the military command or the political credit of the resistants, if they should decide to join them. In the event of military operations in France we must consider them as being of the same importance.

“The list has been drawn up in agreement with the High Command West, the Chief of the Security Police, and the General of the Air Force in Paris.”

I shall not read these new names of high-ranking French officers who were to be arrested but will go on further where the Tribunal will see that the German authorities contemplated causing officers already arrested by the French Government and under the surveillance of the French authorities to undergo the same fate as General De Lattre de Tassigny, General Laure, and General Fornel de la Laurencie. These generals were to be literally torn away from the French authorities to be deported.

“In view of the present general situation and the contemplated security measures, all the authorities here consider it undesirable for these generals to remain in French custody, as the possibility must be considered that either through negligence or by intentional acts of the guard personnel, they might escape and regain their liberty.”

Finally, Page 7, under Roman numeral IX, concerning reprisals against families:

“General Warlimont had asked the Commander-in-Chief of the Western Front to raise the question of reprisal measures against the relatives of persons who had joined the resistance and to submit any proposals.

“President Laval declared himself ready, not long ago, to take measures of this kind on behalf of the French Government; but to limit himself to the families of some particularly distinguished persons.”

I refer to the paragraph before the last of the telegraphic report Number 3,486 of 29 May 1943:

“We must wait and see whether Laval is really willing to apply reprisal measures in a practical way.

“All those present at the meetings were in agreement that such measures should be taken in any event, as rapidly as possible, against families of well-known personages who had become resistants. (For example, members of the families of Generals Giraud, Juin, Georges, the former Minister of the Interior, Pucheu, the Inspector of Finance Couve De Murville, Leroy-Beaulieu, and others.)

“The measures may also be carried out by the German authorities, since the persons who have become resistants are to be considered as foreigners belonging to an enemy power and the members of their families are also to be considered as such.

“In the opinion of those present, the members of these families should be interned; the practical carrying-out of this measure and its technical possibilities must be carefully examined . . . .

“We might also study the question of whether these families should be interned in regions particularly exposed to air attacks, for instance, in the vicinity of dams, or in industrial regions which are often bombed.

“A list of families who are considered liable for internment will be compiled in collaboration with the Embassy.”

In this premeditation of criminal arrests we find the Defendant Ribbentrop, the Defendant Göring, and the Defendant Keitel involved; for it is their departments who made these proposals, and we know that these proposals were agreed to—Document Number 720-PS, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-296, the second in your document book.

It is a fact that these arrests were carried out. Members of the family of General Giraud were deported. General Frère was deported and died in a concentration camp. The orders were therefore carried out. They were approved before being carried out, and the approval inculpates the defendants whose names I have mentioned. The arrests did not only affect high-ranking officers but were much more extensive, and a great number of Frenchmen were arrested. We have no exact statistics.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, did you produce any evidence for your last statement?

M. DUBOST: I shall bring you the proof of the arrest of General Frère and his death in the concentration camp when I deal with the concentration camps. With regard to the arrest and death of several French generals in the concentration camps in Dachau, the Tribunal still remembers the testimony of Blaha. So far as the family of General Giraud is concerned, I shall endeavor to bring proofs, but I did not believe it was necessary; it is a well-known fact that the daughter of General Giraud was deported.

THE PRESIDENT: I am not sure that we can take judicial notice of all facts which may be public knowledge in France.

M. DUBOST: I shall submit to the Tribunal the supplementary proof concerning the generals who died while deported when I deal with the question of the camps.


M. DUBOST: General Frère died in Struthof Camp and we shall explain the circumstances under which he was assassinated. In addition, there exists in your document book a document numbered F-417, Exhibit Number RF-297, which was captured among the archives of the German Armistice Commission, which establishes that the German authorities refused to free French generals who were prisoners of war and whose state of health and advanced age made it imperative that they should be released. I quote:

“As far as this question is concerned the Führer has always adopted an attitude of refusal, not only from the point of view of their release but also with regard to their hospitalization in neutral countries.

“Release or hospitalization today is more out of question than ever, since the Führer has only recently ordered the transfer to Germany of all French generals living in France.”

It is signed by Warlimont, and in handwriting it is noted: “No reply to be given to the French.”

Please retain as evidence only this last sentence: “—since the Führer has only recently ordered the transfer to Germany of all French generals living in France.” As I explained, however, these arrests infinitely exceeded the relatively limited number of generals or families of well-known persons envisaged by the document which I have just read to the Tribunal: “Very many Frenchmen will be arrested . . . .” We have no statistics; but we have an idea of the number, which is considerable according to the figures given for Frenchmen who died in French prisons alone, prisons which had been placed under German command and were supervised by German personnel during the occupation.

We know that 40,000 Frenchmen died in the French prisons, alone, in France, according to the official figures given by the Ministry of Prisoners and Deportees. In the prison registry “Schutzhaft” (protective custody) is written. My American colleagues explained to the Tribunal what this protective custody meant when they read Document Number 1723-PS, submitted under Number USA-206. It is useless to return to this document. It is sufficient to remind the Tribunal that imprisonment and protective custody were considered by the German authorities as the strongest measure of forceful education for any foreigners who would deliberately neglect their duty towards the German community or compromise the security of the German State; they had to act in accordance with the general interests and adapt themselves to the discipline of the State.

This protective custody was, as the Tribunal will remember, a purely arbitrary detention. Those who were interned in protective custody enjoyed no rights and could not vindicate themselves. There were no tribunals at their disposal before which they could plead their cause. We know now through official documents which were submitted to us, particularly by Luxembourg, that protective custody was carried out on a very large scale.

The Tribunal will read in Document Number F-229, already submitted as Exhibit Number USA-243, Document L-215, a list of 25 persons arrested and placed in different concentration camps under protective custody. The Tribunal will recall that our colleagues drew its attention to the reason for the arrest of Ludwig, who was merely strongly suspected of having aided deserters.

Evidence of the application of protective custody in France is given in our Document Number F-278, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-300:

“Copy attached to VAAP-7236 (g)—Secret. Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Berlin, 18 September 1941.

“Subject: Report of August 30, of this year.

“The explanations of the Military Commander in France, of 1 August of this year, are considered in general to be satisfactory as a reply to the French note.

“Here, also, we consider there is every reason to avoid any further discussion with the French concerning preventive arrest, as this would only lead to fixing definite limits to the exercise of these powers by the occupying power, which would not be desirable in the interests of the liberty of action of the military authorities. By order, signed (illegible).”

“To the Representative of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs at the German Armistice Commission at Wiesbaden.

“The Representative of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs—VAAP 7236(g), Secret, dated Wiesbaden, 23 September 1941. Copy.

“. . . the Representative of the Ministry requests that he be informed at an opportune time of the reply made to the French note.”

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs was still involved in this question of protective custody.

The grounds for this custody were, as the Ministry for Foreign Affairs admits and according to the testimony of this document, very weak; nevertheless, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs does not forbid it. The arrests were carried out under multiple pretexts, but all these pretexts may be summarized under two general ideas: Arrests were made either for motives of a political nature or for racial reasons. The arrests were individual or collective in both cases.

Pretexts of a political nature:

From 1941 the French observed that there was a synchronism between the evolution of political events and the rhythm of arrests. The French Document Number F-274(i) (Exhibit Number RF-301), which is at the end of your document book, will show this. A description is given by the Ministry of Prisoners and Deportees of the conditions under which these arrests took place, beginning in 1941—a critical period in the German history of the war, since it was from 1941 that Germany was at war with the Soviet Union:

“The synchronism between the evolution of political events and the rhythm of arrests is evident. The suppression of the line of demarcation, the establishment of resistance groups, the formation of the Maquis resulting from forced labor, the landings in North Africa and in Normandy, all had immediate repercussions on the figures for arrests, of which the maximum curve is reached for the period of May to August 1944, especially in the southern zone and particularly in the region of Lyons.

“We repeat that these arrests were carried out by the members of all categories of the German repressive system: the Gestapo in uniform or in plain clothes, the SD, the Gendarmerie, particularly at the demarcation line, the Wehrmacht and the SS. . . .

“The arrests took on the characteristics of collective operations. In Paris, as a result of an attempted assassination, the 18th Arrondissement was surrounded by the Feldgendarmerie. Its inhabitants, men, women, and children, could not return to their homes and spent the night where they could find shelter. A round-up was carried out in the arrondissement.”

I do not think that it is necessary to read the following paragraph, which deals with the arrests at the University of Clermont-Ferrand, which the Tribunal will certainly remember, and also the arrests in Brittany in 1944, at the time of the landing.

The last paragraph, at the bottom of Page 11:

“. . . on the pretext of conspiracy or attempted assassinations, whole families were made to suffer. The Germans resorted to round-ups when compulsory labor no longer furnished them sufficient workers.

“Round-up in Grenoble, 24 December 1943, Christmas Eve.

“Round-up in Cluny, Saône-et-Loire, in March 1944.

“Round-up in Figeac in May 1944.”

The last paragraph, at the bottom of Page 11:

“Most Frenchmen who were rounded up in this way were in reality not used for work in Germany but were deported, to be interned in concentration camps.”

We might multiply the examples of these arbitrary arrests by delving into official documents which have been submitted by Luxembourg, Denmark, Norway, Holland, and Belgium. These round-ups were never legally justified, they were never even represented as an action taken in accordance with the pseudo-law of hostages to which we have already referred. They were always arbitrary and carried out without any apparent reason, or at any rate, without its being possible for any act of a Frenchman having motivated them even as a reprisal. Other collective arrests were made for racial reasons. They were of the same odious nature as the arrests made for political reasons.

On Page 5 of the official document of the Ministry of Prisoners and Deportees, the Tribunal may read a few odious details connected with these racial arrests.

“Certain German policemen were especially entrusted to pick out Jewish persons, according to their physiognomy. They called this group ‘The Brigade of Physiognomists.’ This verification sometimes took place in public as far as men were concerned. (At the railway station at Nice, some were unclothed at the point of a revolver.)

“The Parisians remember these round-ups, quarter by quarter. Large police buses transported old men, women, and children pell-mell and crowded them into the Velodrome d’Hiver under dreadful sanitary conditions before taking them to Drancy, where deportation awaited them. The round-up of the month of August 1941 has gained sad renown. All the exits of the subway of the 11th Arrondissement were closed and all the Jews in that district were arrested and imprisoned. The round-up of December 1941 was particularly aimed at intellectual circles. Then there were the round-ups of July 1942.

“All the cities in the southern zone, particularly Lyons, Grenoble, Cannes, and Nice, where many Jews had taken refuge, experienced these round-ups after the total occupation of France.

“The Germans sought out all Jewish children who had found refuge with private citizens or with institutions. In May 1944 they proceeded to take into custody the children of the Colony of Eyzieux, and to arrest children who had sought refuge in the colonies of the U.G.I.F. in June and July 1944.”

I do not believe that these children were enemies of the German people, nor that they represented a danger of any kind to the German Army in France.

THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps, M. Dubost, we had better break off now.

[The Tribunal adjourned until 25 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Friday, 25 January 1946

Morning Session

MARSHAL: Your Honors, Defendants Kaltenbrunner and Streicher will be absent from this morning’s session.

M. DUBOST: Your Honors, yesterday I was reading from an official French document, which appears in your document book under the title “Report of the Ministry for Prisoners of War and Deportees.” It concerned the seizure by the Germans of Jewish children in France, who were taken from private houses or public institutions where they had been placed.

With your permission I will come back to a statement which I had previously made concerning the execution of orders, given by the German General Staff with the approval of the German Minister for Foreign Affairs, to arrest all French generals and, in reprisal, to arrest, as well, all the families of these generals who might be resistants, in other words, who were on the side of our Allies.

In accordance with Article 21 of the Charter the Tribunal will not require facts of public knowledge to be proved. In the enormous amount of facts which we submit to you there are many which are known but are not of public knowledge. There are a few, but nevertheless certain, facts which are both known and are also of public knowledge in all countries. There is the famous case of the deportation of the family of General Giraud, and I shall allow myself to recall to the Tribunal the six principal points concerning this affair. First: We all remember having learned through the Allied radio that Madame Giraud, wife of General Giraud . . .

THE PRESIDENT: What is it that you are going to ask us to take judicial knowledge of with reference to the deportation of General Giraud’s family?

M. DUBOST: I have to ask the Tribunal, Mr. President, to apply, as far as these facts are concerned, Article 21 of the Charter, namely, the provision specifying that the Tribunal will not require facts to be proved which are of public knowledge.

Secondly, I request the Tribunal to hear my statement of these facts which we consider to be of public knowledge for they are known not only in France but in America, since the American Army participated in these events.

THE PRESIDENT: The words of Article 21 are not “of public knowledge” but “of common knowledge.” It is not quite the same thing.

M. DUBOST: Before me now I have the French translation of the Charter. I am interpreting according to the French translation: “The Tribunal will not require that facts of public knowledge (“notoriété publique”) be proved.” We interpret these words thus: it is not necessary to bring documentary or testifying proof of facts universally known.

THE PRESIDENT: You say “facts universally known”; but supposing, for instance, the members of the Tribunal did not know the facts? How could it then be taken that they were of common knowledge? The members of the Tribunal may be ignorant of the facts. At the same time it is difficult for them to take cognizance of the facts if they do not know them.

M. DUBOST: It is a question of fact which will be decided by the Tribunal. The Tribunal will say whether it does or does not know that these six points which I shall recall to it are correct.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will retire.

[A recess was taken.]

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal is of opinion that the facts with reference to General Giraud’s deportation and the deportation of his family, although they are matters of common knowledge or of public knowledge within France, cannot be said to be of common knowledge or of public knowledge within the meaning of Article 21, which applies generally to the world.

Of course, if the French Prosecutors have governmental documents or reports from France which state the facts with reference to the deportation of General Giraud, the question assumes a different aspect and if there are such documents the Tribunal will, of course, consider them.

M. DUBOST: I must bring proof that the crimes committed individually by the leaders of the German police in each city and in each region of the occupied countries of the West, were committed in execution of the will of a central authority, the will of the German Government, which permits us to charge all the defendants one by one. I shall not be able to prove this by submitting German documents. That you may consider it a fact, it is necessary that you accept as valid the evidence which I am about to read. This evidence was collected by the American and French armies and the French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes. The Tribunal will excuse me if I am obliged to read numerous documents.

This systematic will can only be proved by showing that everywhere and in every case the German policy used the same methods concerning patriots whom they interned or detained. Internment or imprisonment in France was in civilian prisons which the Germans had seized, or in certain sections of French prisons which the Germans had requisitioned, which they occupied, and which all French officials were forbidden to enter. The prisoners in all these prisons were subject to the same regime. We shall prove this by reading to you depositions of prisoners from each of these German penal institutions in France or the western occupied countries. This regime was absolutely inhuman. It just allowed the prisoners to survive under the most precarious conditions.

In Lyons, at Fort Montluc, the women received as their only food a cup of herb tea at 7 o’clock in the morning and a ladle of soup with a small piece of bread at 5 o’clock in the evening. This is confirmed by Document Number F-555, which you will find the eleventh in your document book, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-302. The first page of this document, second paragraph, is an analysis of the depositions which were received. It is sufficient to refer to this analysis. I shall take a few lines from the following deposition. The witness declares:

“. . . on their arrival at Fort Montluc, the prisoners who were taken in the round-up by the Gestapo on 20 September 1943 were stripped of all their belongings. The prisoners were treated in a brutal fashion. The food rations were quite inadequate. The women’s sense of decency was not respected.”

This testimony was received at Saint Gingolph, 9 October 1944. It refers to the arrests made at Saint Gingolph, which were carried out in the month of September 1943. The witness relates:

“The young men returned from the interrogation with their toes burned by means of cotton-wool pads which had been dipped in gasoline; others had had their calves burned by the flames of a blow torch; others were bitten by police dogs . . . .”

DR. RUDOLF MERKEL (Counsel for the Gestapo): The French Prosecution submits here documents which do not represent sworn affidavits. They are statements which do not show who took them. As a matter of principle I formally protest against these mere testimonies of persons who were not on oath. They cannot be admitted as proof at this Trial.

THE PRESIDENT: Is that all you have to say?

DR. MERKEL: Yes, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: We will hear M. Dubost answer.

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, the Charter, which goes so far as to admit evidence of public knowledge, has not fixed any rules as to the manner in which this evidence, being submitted to you as proof, shall be presented. The Charter leaves the Tribunal to decide on this or that document. The Charter leaves the Tribunal free to decide whether such or such method of investigation is acceptable. The way in which these investigations have been carried out is regular according to the customs and usages of my country. As a matter of fact, it is usual for all official records of the police and gendarmerie to be accepted without the witnesses being under oath. Moreover, according to the stipulations of the Charter, all investigations made to disclose war crimes should be held as authentic proof. Article 21 says:

“The Tribunal shall not require proof of facts of common knowledge but shall take judicial notice thereof. It shall also take judicial notice of official governmental documents and reports of the United Nations, including the acts and documents of the committees set up in the various Allied countries for the investigation of war crimes, and the records and findings of military or other Tribunal of any of the United Nations.”

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, is the document that you are reading to us either an official government document or a report, or is it an act or document of a committee set up in France?

M. DUBOST: This report, Mr. President, comes from the Sûreté Nationale. You can verify that by examining the second sheet of the copy which you have in your hand, at the top to the left: Direction Générale de la Sûreté Nationale. Commissariat Special de Saint Gingolph. Testimony of witnesses.

THE PRESIDENT: May we see the original document?

M. DUBOST: This document was submitted to the Secretary of the Tribunal. The Secretary has only to bring that document to you.

THE PRESIDENT: Very well. Is this a certified copy?

M. DUBOST: It is a copy certified by the Director of the Cabinet of the Ministry of Justice.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, I am told that the French Prosecutors have all the original documents and are not depositing them in the way it is done by the other prosecutors. Is that so?

M. DUBOST: The French Prosecutors submitted the originals of yesterday’s session, and they were handed over this morning to Mr. Martin.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, we wish to see the original document. We understand it is in the hands of the French Secretary. We should like to see it.

M. DUBOST: I have sent for it, Mr. President. This document is a certified copy of the original, which is preserved in the archives of the French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes. This certification was made, on the one hand, by the French Delegate of the Prosecution—you will see the signature of M. de Menthon on the document you have—on the other, by the Director of the Cabinet of the Minister of Justice, M. Zambeaux, with the official seal of the French Ministry of Justice.

THE PRESIDENT: It does appear to be a governmental document. It is the document of a committee set up by France for the investigation of war crimes, is it not?

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, it is a document which comes from the Office of National Security (Direction Générale de la Sûreté Nationale), which was set up in connection with an investigation of War Crimes as prescribed by our French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes. The original remains in Paris at the War Crimes office, but the certified copy which you have was signed by the Director of the Cabinet of the Ministry of Justice in Paris.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, M. Dubost, I was not upon the question of whether it was a true document or not; the question I was upon was whether or not it was, within Article 21, either a governmental document or a report of the United Nations, or a document of a committee set up in France for the investigation of War Crimes; and I was asking whether it is, and it appears to be so. It is, is it not?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you wish to add anything to what you have said?

M. DUBOST: No, I have nothing to add.

THE PRESIDENT: Now, Dr. Merkel, you may speak.

DR. MERKEL: I should only like to stress briefly that these statements which are presented here are not statements of an official government agency and cannot be considered as governmental records. Rather, they are only minutes which have been taken in police offices and thus can in no way be authentic declarations of a government or of an investigating committee. I emphasize once more that these declarations, which have certainly been taken—partially at least—in minor police precincts, have not been made under oath and do not represent sworn statements; and I have to protest firmly against their being considered as evidence here.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you wish to add anything?


THE PRESIDENT: Who is M. Binaud?

M. DUBOST: He is the Police Inspector of the Special Police, who was attached to the Special Commissariat of Saint Gingolph.

I must correct an error made by the Defense Counsel, who said this was a minor police office. This was a frontier post. The Special Commissariats at frontier posts are all important offices even though they are located in very small towns. I think that is the same in all countries.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, M. Dubost, you understand what the problem is? It is a question of the interpretation of Article 21.

M. DUBOST: I understand.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal requires your assistance upon that interpretation, as to whether this document does come under the terms of Article 21. If you have anything to say upon that subject we will be glad to hear it.

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, it seems to me impossible that the Tribunal should rule out this and similar documents which I am going to present, for all these documents bear, for authentication, not only the signature of the French representative at this Tribunal but that of the Delegate of the Minister of Justice to the War Crimes Commission as well. Examine the stamp beside the second signature. It is the seal.

THE PRESIDENT: Do not go too fast; tell us where the signatures are.

M. DUBOST [Indicating on the document.]: Here, Your Honors, is a notation of the release of this document by the Office for Inquiry into War Crimes to the French Prosecutor as an element of proof and below, the signature of the Director of the Cabinet of the French Minister of Justice, the Keeper of the Seals, and in addition, over this signature, the seal of the Minister of Justice. You may read: “Office for Inquiry into War Crimes.”

THE PRESIDENT: Is this the substance of the matter: That this was an inquiry by the police into these facts; and that police inquiry was recorded; and then the Minister of Justice, for the purposes of this Trial, adopted that police report? Is that the substance of it?

M. DUBOST: That is correct, Mr. President. I think that we agree. The Office for Inquiry into War Crimes in France is directly attached to the Ministry of Justice. It carries out investigations. These investigations are made by the police authorities, such as M. Binaud, Inspector of Special Police, attached to the Special Commissariat of Saint Gingolph.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal would like to know when the service of inquiry into War Crimes was established.

M. DUBOST: I cannot give you the exact date from memory, but this service was set up in France the day after the liberation. It began to function in October 1944.

THE PRESIDENT: Was this service established after the police report was made?

M. DUBOST: In the month of September or October.

THE PRESIDENT: September of what year?

M. DUBOST: In September 1944 this Office for Inquiry into War Crimes in France was established, and this service functioned as soon as the Provisional Government was set up in France.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the police inquiry was held under the service? You see, the police report is dated the 9th of October, and therefore the police report appears to have been made after the service had been set up. Is that right?

M. DUBOST: You have the evidence, Mr. President. If you look at the top of the second page at the left, it shows the beginning of the record and you read: “Purpose: Investigation of atrocities committed by Germans against the civilian population.” These investigations were prescribed by the Office for Inquiry into War Crimes.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. That would appear to be so if the service was really established in September and this police investigation is dated the 9th of October.

The Tribunal will adjourn for consideration of this question.

[A recess was taken.]

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal has considered the arguments which have been addressed to it and is of the opinion that the document offered by counsel for France is a document of a committee set up for the investigation of War Crimes within the meaning of Article 21 of the Charter. The fact that it is not upon oath does not prevent it being such a document within Article 21, of which the Tribunal is directed to take judicial notice. The question of its probative value would of course be considered under Article 19 of the Charter and therefore, in accordance with Article 19 and Article 21 of the Charter, the document will be admitted in evidence; and the objection of Counsel for the Gestapo is denied.

The Tribunal would wish that all original documents should be filed with the General Secretary of the Tribunal and that when they are being discussed in Court, the original documents should be present in Court at the time.

HERR LUDWIG BABEL (Counsel for the SS and SD): I have been informed that General Giraud and his family were probably deported to Germany upon the orders of Himmler, but that they were treated very well and that they were billeted in a villa; that they were brought back to France in good health; that things went well with them and that they are still well today. I do not see . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Counsel, forgive me for interrupting you, but the Tribunal are not now considering the case of General Giraud and his family. Are you unable to hear?

What I was saying was that you were making some application in connection with the deportation of General Giraud and were stating facts to us—what you allege to be facts—as to that deportation. The Tribunal is not considering that matter. The Tribunal has already ruled that it cannot take judicial notice of the facts as to General Giraud’s deportation.

HERR BABEL: I was of the opinion that what I had to say might bring about an explanation by the Prosecution and might expedite the trial in that respect. That was the purpose of my inquiry.

THE PRESIDENT: I am merely pointing out to you that we are not now considering General Giraud’s case.

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal will permit me to continue? It seems to me necessary to come back to the proof which I propose to submit. I have to show that, through uniformity of methods, the tortures which were inflicted in each bureau of the German Police . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Have you finished the document we have just admitted?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Mr. President; I have completed this and I will now read from other documents. But first I would like to sum up the proofs which I have to submit this morning through the reading of these documents.

I said that I was going to demonstrate how through the uniformity of ill-treatment inflicted by all branches of the German Police upon prisoners under interrogation, we are able to trace a common will for which we cannot give you direct proof—as we did yesterday, regarding hostages, by bringing you papers signed in particular by Keitel—but we shall arrive at it by a way just as certain, for this identity of method implies a uniformity of will, which we can place only at the very head of the police, that is to say, the German Government, to which the defendants belonged.

This document, Number F-555, Exhibit Number RF-302, from which I have just read, refers to the ill-treatment of prisoners at Fort Montluc in Lyons.

I pass to Document Number F-556, which we shall submit as Exhibit Number RF-303, which relates to the prison regime at Marseilles.

The Tribunal will note that this is an official record drawn up by the military security service of Vaucluse concerning the atrocities committed by Germans upon political prisoners and that this record includes the written deposition of M. Mousson, chief of an intelligence service, who was arrested on 16 August 1943 and then transferred on 30 August 1943 to St. Pierre prison at Marseilles. At the last paragraph of the first page of this document we read:

“Transferred to Marseilles, St. Pierre prison, on 30 August 1943, placed in room P, 25 meters long, 5 meters wide. We are crammed up 75 and often 80. Two straw mattresses for three. Repulsive hygienic conditions: lice, fleas, bed-bugs, tainted food. For no reason at all comrades are beaten and put in cells for 2 or 3 days without food.”

Following page, fourth paragraph:

“Taken into custody again 15 May in a rather brutal way”—this is the 4th paragraph—“I was imprisoned in the prison of Ste. Anne and . . .”

5th paragraph:

“Living conditions in Ste. Anne: deplorable hygiene; food supplied by National Relief.”

Next page, second paragraph:

“Living conditions in Petites Beaumettes: Food, just enough to keep one alive; no packages; Red Cross gives many, but we receive few.”

This concerns, I repeat, prisons entirely under control of the Germans. Regarding conditions at the prison of Poitiers, we submit Document Number F-558, Exhibit Number RF-304. A report is attached from the Press Section of the American Information Service in Paris, dated 18 October 1944. The Tribunal should know that all these reports were included with the documents which were presented by the French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes. We read under number two:

“M. Claeys was arrested 14 December 1943 by the Gestapo and imprisoned in the Pierre Levee Prison until 26 August 1944 . . .

“While in prison he asked for a mattress, as he had been wounded in the war. He was told that he would get it if he confessed. He had to sleep on 1 inch of straw on the ground. Seven men in one room 4 meters long, 2 meters wide, and 2.8 meters in height. . . . For 20 days did not go out of cell. WC was a great discomfort to him because of wounds. The Germans refused to do anything about it.”

Paragraph 4(b).

“Another prisoner weighed 120 kilograms and lost 30 kilograms in a month. Was in isolation cell for a month. Was tortured there and died of gangrene of legs due to wounds caused by torture. Died after 10 days of agony alone and without help.”

Paragraph 5.

“Methods of torture:

“(a) Victim was kept bent up by hands attached around right leg. Was then thrown on the ground and flogged for 20 minutes. If he fainted, they would throw a pail of water in his face. This was to make him speak.

“Mr. Francheteau was flogged like that four days out of six. In some cases, subject was not tied. If he fell they would pick him up by his hair, and go on.

“At other times the victim was put naked in a special punishment cell; his hands were tied to an iron grill above his head. He was then beaten until made to talk.

“(b) Beating as above was not common, but M. Claeys has friends who have seen electric tortures. One electric wire was attached to the foot and another wire placed at different points on the body.”

Paragraph 6.

“The tortures were all the more horrible because the Germans in many cases had no clear idea of what information they wanted and just tortured haphazard.”

And at the very end, the five last lines.

“One torture consisted in hanging up the victims by the hands, which were tied behind the back, until the shoulders were completely dislocated. Afterwards, the soles of the feet were cut with razor blades and then the victims were made to walk on salt.”

Concerning the prisons of the north, I submit Document Number F-560, Exhibit Number RF-305. It also comes from the American War Crimes Commission. On Page 1, under the letter “A” you will find a general report of Professor Paucot on the atrocities committed by the Germans in Northern France and in Belgium. The report covers the activities of the German police in France, at Arras, Béthune, Lille, Valenciennes, Malo les Bains, La Madeleine, Quincy, and Loos; in Belgium, at Saint-Gilles, Fort de Huy, and Camp de Belveroo. This report is accompanied by 73 depositions of victims. From examination of these testimonies the fact emerges that the brutality, the barbarity of methods used during the interrogations was the same in the various places cited.

This synthesis which I have just mentioned is from the American report. It seems to me unnecessary to stress this as it is confirmed on the first page. The Tribunal can read further on Pages 4, 5, 6, and 7 a detailed description of the atrocities, systematic and all identical, which the German police inflicted to force confessions.

On Page 5, the fifth paragraph, I quote:

“A prisoner captured while trying to escape was delivered in his cell to the fury of police dogs who tore him to pieces.”

On Page 17, second paragraph, of the German text (Page 14 of the French text) there is the report of M. Prouille, which, by exception, I shall read because of the nature of the facts. I quote:

“Condemned by the German Tribunal to 18 months of imprisonment for possessing arms and after having been in the prisons of Arras, Béthune and Loos, I was sent to Germany.

“As a result of ill-treatment in eastern Prussia I was obliged to have my eyes looked after. Having been taken to an infirmary, a German doctor put drops in my eyes. A few hours later, after great suffering, I became blind. After spending several days in the prison of Fresnes, I was sent to the clinic of Quinze-Vingts in Paris. Professor Guillamat, who examined me, certified that my eyes had been burned by a corrosive agent.”

Under the Number F-561 I shall read a document from the American War Crimes Commission, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-306. The Tribunal will find on Page 2 the proof that M. Herrera was present at tortures inflicted on numerous persons, and saw a Pole, by the name of Riptz, have the soles of his feet burned. Then his head was split open with a spanner. After the wound had healed he was shot. I quote:

“Commander Grandier, who had had a leg fractured in the war of 1914, was threatened by those who conducted the interrogations with having his other leg broken and this was actually done. When he had half revived, as a result of a hypodermic injection, the Germans did away with him.”

We do not want to use more of your time than is necessary, but the Tribunal should know these American official documents in entirety, all of which show in a very exact way the tortures carried out by the various German police services in numerous regions of France, and give evidence of the similarity of the methods used.

The following document is Number F-571, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-307, and of which we shall read only one four-line paragraph:

“M. Robert Vanassche, from Tourcoing, states: ‘I was arrested the 22 February 1944 at Mouscron in Belgium by men belonging to the Gestapo who were dressed in civilian clothing. During the interrogation they were wearing uniforms . . . .’ ”

I skip a paragraph.

“ ‘I was interrogated for the second time at Cand in the main German prison, where I remained 31 days. There I was locked up for 2 or 3 hours in a sort of wooden coffin where one could breathe only through three holes in the top.’ ”

Further, the same, document:

“M. Rémy, residing at Armentières, states: ‘Arrested 2 May 1944 at Armentières, I arrived at the Gestapo, 18 Rue François Debatz at La Madelaine about 3 o’clock the same day. I was subjected to interrogation on two different occasions. The first lasted for about an hour. I had to lie on my stomach and was given about 120 lashes. The second interrogation lasted a little longer. I was lashed again, lying on my stomach. As I would not talk, they stripped me and put me in the bath tub. The 5th of May I was subjected to a new interrogation at Loos. That day they hung me up by my feet and rained blows all over my body. As I refused to speak, they untied me and put me again on my stomach. When pain made me cry out, they kicked me in the face with their boots. As a result I lost 17 lower teeth . . . .’ ”

The names of two of the torturers follow, but are of no concern to us here. We are merely trying to show that the torturers everywhere used the same methods. This could have been done only in execution of orders given by their chiefs.

I will further quote the testimony of M. Guérin:

“. . . as I would not admit anything, one of the interrogators put my scarf around my mouth to stifle my cries. Another German policeman took my head between his legs and two others, one on each side of me, beat me with clubs over the loins. Each of them struck me 25 times . . . . This lasted over two hours. The next morning they began again and it lasted as long as the day before. These tortures were inflicted upon me because, on 11 November, I with my comrades of the resistance had taken part in a demonstration by placing a wreath on the monument to the dead of the 1914-18 war . . . .”

I now quote the report of Mr. Alfred Deudon. Here is the ill-treatment to which he was subjected:

“18 August, sensitive parts were struck with a hammer. 19 August, was held under water; 20 August, my head was squeezed with an iron band; 21 and 24 August, I was chained day and night; 26 August, I was chained again day and night; and at one time hung up by the arms.”

I will now read an extract from the report of M. Delltombe, arrested by the Gestapo 14 June 1944:

“Thursday, 15 June, at 8 o’clock in the morning, I was taken to the torture cellar. There they demanded that I should confess to the sabotage which I had carried out with my groups and denounce my comrades as well as name my hiding places. Because I did not answer quickly enough, the torture commenced. They made me put my hands behind my back. They put on special handcuffs and hung me up by my wrists. Then they flogged me, principally on the loins, and in the face. That day the torture lasted 3 hours.

“Friday, 16 June, the same thing took place; but only for an hour and a half, for I could not stand it any longer; and they took me back to my cell on a stretcher.

“Saturday the tortures began again with even more severity. Then I was obliged to confess my sabotage, for the brutes stuck needles in my arms. After that they left me alone until 10 August; then they had me called to the office and told me I was condemned to death. I was put on a train of deportees going to Brussels, from which I was freed on 3 September by Brussels patriots.

“. . . women were subjected to the same treatment as men. To the physical pain, the sadism of the torturers added the moral anguish, especially mortifying for a woman or a young girl, of being stripped nude by her torturers. Pregnancy did not save them from lashes. When brutality brought about a miscarriage, they were left without any care, exposed to all the hazards and complications of these criminal abortions.”

This is the text of the summary drawn up by the American officer who carried out this investigation.

Here is the report of Madame Sindemans, who was arrested in Paris 24 February 1944:

“. . . by four soldiers, each armed with a submachine gun, and two other Germans in civilian clothes holding revolvers.

“Having looked into my handbag, they found three identification cards. Then they searched my room and discovered the pads and stamp of the Kommandantur and some German passes and employment cards which I had succeeded in stealing from them the day before . . . .

“Immediately, they placed handcuffs upon me and took me to be interrogated. When I gave no reply, they slapped me in the face with such force that I fell from my chair. Then they struck me with a rubber ring across the face. This interrogation began at 10 o’clock in the morning and ended at 11 o’clock that night. I must tell you that I had been pregnant for 3 months.”

We shall submit now Documents F-563 and 564 under the one number Exhibit Number RF-308. It is a report concerning the atrocities committed by the Gestapo in Bourges. We shall read a part of this report.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, how do you establish what this document is? It appears to be the report of M. Marc Toledano.

M. DUBOST: That is correct, Mr. President. This report, with the rest of the documents in the same bundle, was incorporated in the document presented by the French Office for Inquiry into War Crimes, as is evident from the official signature of M. Zambeaux on the original, which is in the hands of the Secretary of the Court. I shall read the first page of the original:

“I, the undersigned, Madame Bondoux, supervisor at the prison in Bourges, certify that nine men, mostly youths, were subjected to abominable treatment. They remained with their hands bound behind their backs and with chains on their feet for 15 to 20 days; it was absolutely impossible for them to take their food in a normal way and they were screaming with hunger. In the face of this situation several of the ordinary criminal prisoners showed their willingness to help these martyrs by making small packets from their own rations which I had passed to them in the evening. A certain German supervisor, whom I knew under his first name of Michel, threw their bread in a corner of the cell, and at night came to beat them. All these young men were shot on 20 November 1943.

“Then, too, a woman named Hartwig, who lived at Chevannes, I believe, told me that she had remained for 4 days bound to a chair. At all events, I can testify that her body was completely bruised.”

We read in the statement of M. Labussiere, who is a captain of the reserve and a teacher at Marseilles-les-Aubigny:

“. . . On the 11th I was twice flogged with a lash. I had to bend over a bench and the muscles of my thighs and calves were fully stretched. At first I received some 30 lashes with a heavy whip, then another instrument was used which had a buckle at the end. I then was struck on the buttocks, on the thighs, and on the calves. To do this my torturer got up on a bench and made me spread my legs. Then with a very thin thong he finished off by giving me some 20 more biting lashes. When I picked myself up I was dizzy and I fell to the ground. I was always picked up again. Needless to say, the handcuffs were never taken off my wrists . . .”

I recoil from reading the remainder of this testimony. The details which precede are atrocious.

“At 10 o’clock on the 12th, after having beaten a woman, Paoli came to find me and said: ‘Dog, you have no heart. It was your wife I have just beaten. I’ll go on doing it as long as you refuse to talk.’ He wanted me to give the place of our meetings and the names of my comrades.”

On the following line:

“. . . on the 14th at 6 o’clock in the evening I was taken once again to the torture chamber. I could hardly crawl. Before he let me come in, Paoli said: ‘I give you 5 minutes to tell me all you know. If after these 5 minutes you’ve said nothing, you’ll be shot at 3 o’clock; your wife will be shot at six, and your boy will be sent to Germany.’ ”

We read that after signing the record of the interrogation his torturer said to him:

“ ‘Look at yourself! See what we can make of a man in 5 days! You haven’t seen the finish yet!’ And he added: ‘Now get out of here. You make us sick!’ ”—and the witness concluded with—“I was, in fact, covered with filth from head to foot. They put me in a cart and took me back to my cell . . . . During those 5 days I had certainly received more than 700 strokes from a lash . . . .”

A large hematosis (blood clot) appeared on both his buttocks. A doctor had to operate. His comrades in custody would not go near him because of the foul smell from the abscesses covering his body as a result of the ill-treatment. On 24 November, the date on which he was interrogated, he had not yet recovered from his wounds.

His testimony concludes with a general statement of the methods of torture which were used:

“1) The lash.

“2) The bath: The victim was plunged headfirst into a tub full of cold water until he was asphyxiated. Then they applied artificial respiration. If he would not talk they repeated the process several times consecutively. With his clothes soaking, he spent the night in a cold cell.

“3) Electric current: The terminals were placed on the hands, then on the feet, in the ears, and then one in the anus and another on the end of the penis.

“4) Crushing the testicles in a press specially made for the purpose. Twisting the testicles was frequent.

“5) Hanging: The patient’s hands were handcuffed together behind his back. A hook was slipped through his handcuffs and the victim was lifted by a pulley. At first they jerked him up and down. Later, they left him suspended for varying, fairly long, periods. The arms were often dislocated. In the camp I saw Lieutenant Lefevre, who, having been suspended like that for more than 4 hours, had lost the use of both arms.

“6) Burning with a soldering lamp or with matches:

“On 2 July my comrade Laloue, a teacher from Cher, came to the camp. He had been subjected to most of these tortures at Bourges. One arm had been put out of joint and he was unable to move the fingers of his right hand as a result of the hanging. He had been subjected to flogging and electricity. Sharp-pointed matches had been driven under the nails of his hands and feet. His wrists and ankles had been wrapped with rolls of wadding and the matches had been set on fire. While they were burning, a German plunged a pointed knife into the soles of his feet several times and another lashed him with a whip. Phosphorous burns had eaten away several fingers as far as the second joint. Abscesses which had developed had burst and this saved him from blood poisoning.”

Under the signature of one of the chiefs of the General Staff of the French Forces of the Interior, who freed the Department of Cher, M. Magnon—whose signature is authenticated by the French official authorities whom you know—we read that since the liberation of Bourges, 6 September 1944, an inspection of the Gestapo cellars disclosed an instrument of torture, a bracelet composed of several balls of hard wood with steel spikes. There was a device for tightening the bracelet round the victim’s wrist. This bracelet was seen by numerous soldiers and leaders of the Maquis of Manetou-Salon. It was in the hands of Adjutant Neuilly, now in the 1st Battalion of the 34th Demi-Brigade. A drawing is attached to this declaration. Commander Magnon certifies having seen the instrument described above.

We now submit Document F-565, from the military service of the department of Vaucluse, which becomes Exhibit Number RF-309. It is a repetition of the same methods. We do not consider it necessary to dwell upon them.

We will now turn to Document F-567, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-310. It refers to the tortures practiced by the German police in Besançon. It is a deposition of M. Dommergues, a professor at Besançon. This deposition was received by the American War Crimes Commission—the mission of Captain Miller. We shall read about the statement of M. Dommergues, professor at Besançon:

“He was arrested on 11 February 1944; was violently struck with a lash during the interrogation. When a woman who was being tortured uttered screams, they made M. Dommergues believe that it was his own wife. He saw a comrade hung up with a weight of 50 kilograms on each foot. Another had his eyes pierced with pins. A child lost its voice completely.”

This is from the American War Crimes Commission, summing up M. Dommergues’ deposition. This document includes a second part under the same Number F-567(b). We shall read some excerpts from this document.

THE PRESIDENT: One of the members has not got his document marked, and I want to know whose statement it is you are referring to. Is it Dr. Gomet?

M. DUBOST: It is not a statement; it is rather a letter sent by Dr. Gomet, Secretary of the Council of the Departmental College of Doubs of the National Order of Physicians. This letter was sent by him to the chief medical officer of the Feldkommandantur in Besançon on 11 September 1943. Here is the text of this letter:

“Dear Doctor and Colleague,

“I have the Honor to deliver to you the note which I drafted at your request and sent to our colleagues of the department in a circular of 1 September.

“My conscience compels me on the other hand, to take up another subject with you.

“Quite recently I had to treat a Frenchman who had wounds and multiple ecchymosis on his face and body, as a result of the torture apparatus employed by the German security service. He is a man of good standing, holding an important appointment under the French Government; and he was arrested because they thought he could furnish certain information. They could make no accusation against him, as is proved by the fact that he was freed in a few days, when the interrogation to which they wanted to subject him was finished.

“He was subjected to torture, not as a legal penalty or in legitimate defense; but for the sole purpose of forcing him to speak under stress of violence and pain.

“As for myself, representing the French medical body here, my conscience and a strict conception of my duty compel me to inform you of what I have observed in the exercise of my profession. I appeal to your conscience as a doctor and ask you whether by virtue of our mission of protecting the physical health of our fellow-beings, which is the mission of every doctor, it is not our duty to intervene.”

He must have had a reply from the German doctor, for Dr. Gomet writes him a second letter, and here is the text:

“Dear Doctor and Colleague,

“You were good enough to note the facts which I put before you in my letter of 11 September 1943 regarding the torture apparatus utilized by the German Security Service during the interrogation of a French official for whom I had subsequently to prescribe treatment. You asked me, as was quite natural, if you could visit the person in question yourself. I replied at our recent meeting that the person concerned did not know of the step which I had taken; and I did not know whether he would authorize me to give his name. I wish to emphasize, in fact, that I myself am solely responsible for this initiative. The person through whom I learned, by virtue of my profession, the facts which I have just related to you, had nothing to do with this report. The question is strictly professional. My conscience as a doctor has forced me to bring this matter to your attention. I advance only what I know from absolutely certain observation, and I guarantee the truth of my statement on my honor as a man, a physician, and a Frenchman.

“My patient was interrogated twice by the German Security Service about the end of August 1943. I had to examine him on 8 September 1943, that is to say, about 10 days after he left prison, where he had in vain asked for medical attention. He had a palpebral ecchymosis on the left side and abrasions in the region of his right temple, which he said were made with a sort of circle which they had placed upon his head and which they struck with small clubs. He had ecchymosis on the backs of his hands, these having been placed, according to what he told me, in a squeezing apparatus. On the front of his legs there were still scars with scabs and small surface wounds—the result, he told me, of blows administered with flexible rods studded with short spikes.

“Obviously, I cannot swear to the means by which the ecchymosis and wounds were produced, but I note that their appearance is in complete agreement with the explanations given me.

“It will be easy for you, Sir, to learn if apparatus of the kind to which I allude is really in use in the German Security Service.”

I pass over the rest.

THE PRESIDENT: It may be convenient for counsel and others to know that the Tribunal will not sit in open session tomorrow, as it has many administrative matters to consider. We will adjourn now until 2 o’clock.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

MARSHAL: If Your Honors please, the Defendants Kaltenbrunner and Streicher will continue to be absent this afternoon.

M. DUBOST: We left off this morning at the enumeration of the tortures that had been practiced habitually by the Gestapo in the various cities in France where inquiries had been conducted; and I was proving to you, by reading numerous documents, that everywhere accused persons and frequently witnesses themselves—as seen in the last letter—were questioned with brutality and subjected to tortures that were usually identical. This systematic repetition of the same methods of torture proves, we believe, that a common plan existed, conceived by the German Government itself.

We still have a great many testimonies, all extracts from the report of the American services, concerning the prisons at Dreux, at Morlaix, and at Metz. These testimonies are given in Documents F-689, 690, and 691, which we now submit as Exhibits RF-311, 312, and 313.

With your permission, Your Honor, I will now refrain from further citing these documents. The same acts were systematically repeated. This is also true of the tortures inflicted in Metz, Cahors, Marseilles, and Quimperlé, dealt with in Documents F-692, 693, 565, and 694, which we are presenting to you as Exhibits RF-314, 314 (bis), 309, and 315.

We now come to one of the most odious crimes committed by the Gestapo, and it is not possible for us to keep silent about it in spite of our desire to shorten this statement. This is the murder of a French officer by the Gestapo at Clermont-Ferrand, a murder which was committed under extremely shameful conditions, in contempt of all the rules of international law; for it was perpetrated in a region where, according to the terms of the Armistice, the Gestapo had nothing to do and had no right to be.

The name of this French officer was Major Henri Madeline. His case is given in Document F-575, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-316. He was arrested on 1 October 1943 at Vichy. His interrogation began in January 1944; and he was struck in such a savage manner, in the course of the first interrogation, that when he was brought back to his cell his hand was already broken.

On 27 January this officer was questioned again on two occasions, during which he was struck so violently that when he returned to his cell his hands were so swollen that it was impossible to see the handcuffs he had on. The following day the German police came back to fetch him from his cell, where he had passed the whole night in agony. He was still alive; they threw him down on a road a kilometer away from a small village in the Massif Central, Perignant-Les-Sarlièves, to make it look as if he had been the victim of a road accident. His body was found later. A post mortem showed that the thorax was completely crushed, with multiple fractures of the ribs and perforation of the lungs. There was also dislocation of the spine, fracture of the lower jaw, and most of the tissues of the head were loose.

Alas, we all know that a few French traitors did assist in the arrests and in the misdeeds of the Gestapo in France under the orders of German officers. One of these traitors, who was arrested when our country was liberated, has described the ill-treatment that had been inflicted on Major Madeline. The name of this traitor is Verière and we are going to read a passage from his statement:

“He was beaten with a whip and a bludgeon; blows on his fingernails crushed his fingers. He was forced to walk barefooted on tacks. He was burned with cigarettes. Finally, he was beaten unmercifully and taken back to his cell in a dying condition.”

Major Madeline was not the only victim of such evil treatment which several German officers of the Gestapo helped to inflict. This inquiry has shown:

“. . . that 12 known persons succumbed to the tortures inflicted by the Gestapo of Clermont-Ferrand, that some women were stripped naked and beaten before they were raped.”

I am anxious not to lengthen these proceedings by useless citations. I believe the Tribunal will consider as confirmed the facts that I have presented. They are contained in the document that we are placing before you, and in it the Tribunal will find, in extenso, the written testimonies taken on the day which followed the liberation. This systematic repetition of the same criminal proceedings in order to achieve the same purpose—to bring about a reign of terror—was not the isolated act of a subordinate having authority in our country only and remaining outside the control of his government or of the Army General Staff. An examination of the methods of the German police in all countries of the West shows that the same horrors, the same atrocities, were repeated systematically everywhere. Whether in Denmark, Belgium, Holland, or Norway, the interrogations were everywhere and at all times conducted by the Gestapo with the same savagery, the same contempt of the rights of self defense, the same contempt of human dignity.

In the case of Denmark, we cite a few lines from a document already submitted to the Tribunal. It is Document F-666 (Exhibit Number RF-317), which should be the sixth in your document book. It contains an official Danish report of October 1945, concerning the German major war criminals appearing before the International Military Tribunal. On Page 5, under the title, “Torture”, we read in a brief résumé everything that concerns the question with regard to Denmark:

“In numerous cases the German police and their assistants used torture in order to force the prisoners to confess or to give information. This fact is supported by irrefutable evidence. In most cases the torture consisted of beating with a rod or with a rubber bludgeon. But also far more flagrant forms of torture were used including some which will leave lasting injuries. Bovensiepen has stated that the order to use torture in certain cases emanated from higher authorities, possibly even from Göring as Chief of the Geheime Staatspolizei but, at any rate, from Heydrich. The instructions were to the effect that torture might be used to compel persons to give information that might serve to disclose subversive organizations directed against the German Reich, but not for the purpose of making the delinquent admit his own deeds.”

A little further on:

“The means were prescribed, namely, a limited number of strokes with a rod. Bovensiepen does not remember whether the maximum limit was 10 or 20 strokes. An officer from the criminal police (Kriminal Kommissar, Kriminalrat) was there and also, when circumstances so required, there was a medical officer present.”

The above-mentioned instructions were modified several times for minor details, and all members of the criminal police were notified.

The Danish Government points out, in conclusion, two particularly repugnant cases of torture inflicted on Danish patriots. They are the cases of Professor Mogens Fog and the ill-treatment inflicted on Colonel Ejnar Thiemroth. Finally, the Tribunal can read that Doctor Hoffmann-Best states that his official prerogatives did not authorize him to prevent the use of torture.

In the case of Belgium we should recall first of all the tortures that were inflicted in the tragically famous camp of Breendonck, where hundreds, even thousands of Belgian patriots, were shut up. We shall revert to Breendonck when we deal with the question of concentration camps. We shall merely quote from the report of the Belgian War Crimes Commission a few definite facts in support of our original affirmation, that all acts of ill-treatment imputed to the Gestapo in France were reproduced in identical manner in all the occupied western countries. The documents which we shall submit to you are to be found in the small document book under Numbers F-942(a), 942(b), Exhibits RF-318, 319.

This report comprises minutes which I will not read, inasmuch as it contains testimonies which are analogous to, if not identical with, those that were read concerning France. However, on Pages 1 and 2 you will find the statement made by M. Auguste Ramasl and a statement made by M. Paul Desomer, which show that the most extreme cruelties were inflicted on these men and that, when they emerged from the offices of the Gestapo, they were completely disfigured and unable to stand.

And now I submit to you with regard to Belgium, Documents F-641(a) and F-641(b), which now become Exhibits RF-320 and 321. I shall not read them. They, too, contain reports describing tortures similar to those I have already mentioned. If the Court will accept the cruelty of the methods of torture employed by the Gestapo as having been established, I will abstain from reading all the testimonies which have been collected.

In the case of Norway our information is taken from a document submitted by the Norwegian Government for the punishment of the major war criminals. In the French translation of this document—Number UK-79, which we present as Exhibit Number RF-323—on Page 2, the Tribunal will find the statement of the Norwegian Government according to which numerous Norwegian citizens died from the cruel treatment inflicted on them during their interrogations. The number of known cases for the district of Oslo, only, is 52; but the number in the various regions of Norway is undoubtedly much higher. The total number of Norwegian citizens who died during the occupation in consequence of torture or ill-treatment, execution, or suicide in political prisons or concentration camps is approximately 2,100.

In Paragraph B, Page 2 of the document, there is a description of the methods employed in the services of the Gestapo in Norway which were identical with those I have already described.

In the case of Holland, we shall submit Document Number F-224, which becomes Exhibit Number RF-324 and which, is an extract from the statement of the Dutch Government for the prosecution and punishment of the major German war criminals. This document bears the date of 11 January 1946. It has been distributed and should now be in your hands. The Tribunal will find in this document a great number of testimonies which were collected by the Criminal Investigation Department, all of which describe the same ill-treatment and tortures as those already known to you and which were committed by the services of the Gestapo in Holland.

In Holland, as elsewhere, the accused were struck with sticks. When their backs were completely raw from beating they were sent back to their cells. Sometimes icy water was sprayed on them and sometimes they were exposed to electrical current. At Amersfoort a witness saw with his own eyes a prisoner, who was a priest, beaten to death with a rubber truncheon. The systematic character of such tortures seems to me definitely established.

The document of the Danish Government is a first proof in support of my contention that these systematic tortures were deliberately willed by the higher authorities of the Reich and that the members of the German Government are responsible for them. In any case these systematic tortures were certainly known, because there were protests from all European countries against such methods, which plunged us again into the darkness of the Middle Ages; and at no time was an order given to forbid such methods, at no time were those who executed them repudiated by their superiors. The methods followed were devised to reinforce the policy of terrorism pursued by Germany in the western occupied countries—a policy of terrorism which I already described to you when I dealt with the question of hostages.

It is now incumbent on me to designate to you by name those among the accused whom France, as well as other countries in the West, considers to be especially guilty in having prepared and developed this criminal policy carried out by the Gestapo. We maintain that they are Bormann and Kaltenbrunner who, because of their functions, must have known more than any others, about those deeds. Although we are not in possession of any document signed by them in respect to the western countries, the uniformity of the acts we have described to you and the fact that they were analogous and even identical, in spite of the diversity of places, enables us to assert that all these orders were dictated by a single will; and among the accused, Bormann and Kaltenbrunner were the direct instruments of that single will.

Everything I described to you here concerned the procedure prior to judgment. We know with what ferocity this procedure was applied. We know that this ferocity was intentional. It was known to the populations of the invaded countries, and its purpose was to create an atmosphere of real terror around the Gestapo and all the German police services.

After the examination came the judicial proceedings. These proceedings were, as we see them, only a parody of justice. The prosecution was based on a legal concept which we dismiss as being absolutely inhuman. That part will be dealt with by my colleague, M. Edgar Faure, in the second part of the statement on the German atrocities in the western countries: crimes against the spirit.

It is sufficient for us to know that the German courts which dealt with crimes committed by the citizens of the occupied western countries, which did not accept defeat, never applied but one penalty, the death penalty, and that in execution of an inhuman order by one of these men, Keitel; an order which appears in Document Number L-90, already submitted to you by my United States colleagues, under Document Number USA-503. It is the penultimate in your large document book, Line 5:

“If these offenses are punished with imprisonment or even with hard labor for life, it will be interpreted as a sign of weakness. Effective and lasting intimidation can only be achieved either by capital punishment or by measures which leave the relatives and the population in the dark about the fate of the culprit. Deportation to Germany serves this purpose.”

Is it necessary to make any comment? Can we be surprised at this war leader giving orders to justice? What we heard about him yesterday makes us doubt that he is merely a military leader. We have quoted you his own words, “Effective and lasting intimidation can only be achieved by capital punishment.” Are such orders, given to courts of justice, compatible with military honor? “If in effect”—Keitel goes on to say in this Document—“the courts are unable to pronounce the death penalty, then the man must be deported.” I think you will share my opinion that, when such orders are given to courts, one can no longer speak of justice. In execution of this order, those of our compatriots who were not condemned to death and immediately executed were deported to Germany.

We now come to the third part of my statement: the question of deportation.

It remains for me to explain to you in what circumstances the deportations were carried out. If prior to that the Tribunal could suspend the sitting for a few minutes, I should be very grateful.

THE PRESIDENT: How long would you like us to suspend, M. Dubost?

M. DUBOST: Perhaps ten minutes, Your Honor.

[A recess was taken.]

DR. OTTO NELTE (Counsel for the Defendant Keitel): The French Prosecutor just now read from Document L-90, the so-called “Nacht und Nebel” decree. He referred to this decree and cited the words:

“Effective and lasting intimidation can only be achieved by capital punishment, or by measures which leave the relatives and the population in the dark about the fate of the culprit.”

The French Prosecutor mentioned that these were the very words of Keitel.

In connection with a previous case the President and the Tribunal have pointed out that it is not permissible to quote only a part of a document when by so doing a wrong impression might be created. The French Prosecutor will agree with me when I say that Decree L-90 makes it quite clear that these are not the words of the Chief of the OKW, but of Hitler. In this short extract it says:

“It is the carefully considered will of the Führer that, when attacks are made in occupied countries against the Reich or against the occupying power, the culprits must be dealt with by other measures than those decreed heretofore. The Führer is of the opinion that if these offenses are punished with imprisonment, or even with hard labor for life, this will be looked upon as a sign of weakness. Effective and lasting intimidation can only be achieved by capital punishment, et cetera.”

The decree then goes on to say:

“The enclosed directives on how to deal with the offences comply with the Führer’s point of view. They have been examined and approved by him.”

I take the liberty to point out this fact, because it was just this decree, which is known as the notorious “Nacht und Nebel” decree, which in its formulation and execution was opposed by Keitel. That is why I am protesting.

M. DUBOST: I owe you an explanation. I did not read the decree in full because the Tribunal knows it. In accordance with the customary procedure of this Tribunal, it has been read. It is not necessary to read it again. Moreover, I knew that the accused Keitel had signed it, but that Hitler had conceived it. Therefore, I made allusion to the military honor of this general, who was not afraid to become the lackey of Hitler.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal understood from your mentioning of the fact that the document had already been submitted to the Tribunal and does not think that there was anything misleading in what you did.

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal accepts this, we shall proceed to the hearing of a witness, a Frenchman.

[The witness, Lampe, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: This is your witness, is it not? Is this the witness you wish to call?


THE PRESIDENT: [To the witness] Will you stand up. What is your name?

M. MAURICE LAMPE (Witness): Lampe, Maurice.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me: Do you swear to speak without hate or fear, to say the truth, all the truth, only the truth?

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: Raise the right hand and say, I swear.

LAMPE: I swear.

THE PRESIDENT: Spell your name.



M. DUBOST: You were born in Roubaix on the 23rd of August 1900. Were you deported by the Germans?


THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.

LAMPE: Thank you, Mr. President.

M. DUBOST: You were interned in Mauthausen?

LAMPE: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: Will you testify as to what you know concerning this internment camp?

LAMPE: Willingly.

M. DUBOST: Say what you know.

LAMPE: I was arrested on 8 November 1941. After two years and a half of internment in France, I was deported on 22 March 1944 to Mauthausen in Austria. The journey lasted three days and three nights under particularly vile conditions—104 deportees in a cattle truck without air. I do not believe that it is necessary to give all the details of this journey, but one can well imagine the state in which we arrived at Mauthausen on the morning of the 25th of March 1944, in weather 12 degrees below zero. I mention, however, that from the French border we traveled in the trucks, naked.

When we arrived at Mauthausen, the SS officer who received this convoy of about 1,200 Frenchmen informed us in the following words, which I shall quote from memory almost word for word:

“Germany needs your arms. You are, therefore, going to work; but I want to tell you that you will never see your families again. When one enters this camp, one leaves it by the chimney of the crematorium.”

I remained about three weeks in quarantine in an isolated block, and I was then detailed to work with a squad in a stone quarry. The quarry at Mauthausen was in a hollow about 800 metres from the camp proper. There were 186 steps down to it. It was particularly painful torture, because the steps were so rough-hewn that to climb them even without a load was extremely tiring.

One day, 15 April 1944, I was detailed to a team of 12 men—all of them French—under the orders of a German “Kapo,” a common criminal, and of an SS man.

We started work at seven o’clock in the morning. By eight o’clock, one hour later, two of my comrades had already been murdered. They were an elderly man, M. Gregoire from Lyons, and a quite young man, Lefevre from Tours. They were murdered because they had not understood the order, given in German, detailing them for a task. We were very frequently beaten because of our inability to understand the German language.

On the evening of that first day, 15 April 1944, we were told to carry the two corpses to the top, and the one that I, with three of my comrades, carried was that of old Gregoire, a very heavy man; we had to go up 186 steps with a corpse and we all received blows before we reached the top.

Life in Mauthausen—and I shall declare before this Tribunal only what I myself saw and experienced—was a long cycle of torture and of suffering. However, I would like to recall a few scenes which were particularly horrible and have remained more firmly fixed in my memory.

During September, I think it was on the 6th of September 1944, there came to Mauthausen a small convoy of 47 British, American, and Dutch officers. They were airmen who had come down by parachute. They had been arrested after having tried to make their way back to their own lines. Because of this they were condemned to death by a German tribunal. They had been in prison about a year and a half and were brought to Mauthausen for execution.

On their arrival they were transferred to the bunker, the camp prison. They were made to undress and had only their pants and a shirt. They were barefooted. The following morning they were at the roll call at seven o’clock. The work gangs went to their tasks. The 47 officers were assembled in front of the office and were told by the commanding officer of the camp that they were all under sentence of death.

I must mention that one of the American officers asked the commander that he should be allowed to meet his death as a soldier. In reply, he was bashed with a whip. The 47 were led barefoot to the quarry.

For all the prisoners at Mauthausen the murder of these men has remained in their minds like a scene from Dante’s Inferno. This is how it was done: At the bottom of the steps they loaded stone on the backs of these poor men and they had to carry them to the top. The first journey was made with stones weighing 25 to 30 kilos and was accompanied by blows. Then they were made to run down. For the second journey the stones were still heavier; and whenever the poor wretches sank under their burden, they were kicked and hit with a bludgeon, even stones were hurled at them.

This went on for several days. In the evening when I returned from the gang with which I was then working, the road which led to the camp was a bath of blood. I almost stepped on the lower jaw of a man. Twenty-one bodies were strewn along the road. Twenty-one had died on the first day. The twenty-six others died the following morning. I have tried to make my account of this horrible episode as short as possible. We were not able, at least when we were in camp, to find out the names of these officers; but I think that by now their names must have been established.

In September 1944 Himmler visited us. Nothing was changed in the camp routine. The work gangs went to their tasks as usual, and I had—we had—the unhappy opportunity of seeing Himmler close. If I mention Himmler’s visit to the camp—after all it was not a great event—it is because that day they presented to Himmler the execution of fifty Soviet officers.

I must tell you that I was then working in a Messerschmidt gang, and that day I was on night shift. The block where I was billeted was just opposite the crematorium; and in the execution room, we saw—I saw—these Soviet officers lined up in rows of five in front of my block. They were called one by one. The way to the execution room was relatively short. It was reached by a stairway. The execution room was under the crematorium.

The execution, which Himmler himself witnessed—at least the beginning of it, because it lasted throughout the afternoon—was another particularly horrible spectacle. I repeat, the Soviet Army officers were called one by one, and there was a sort of human chain between the group which was awaiting its turn and that which was in the stairway listening to the shots which killed their predecessors. They were all killed by a shot in the neck.

M. DUBOST: You witnessed this personally?

LAMPE: I repeat that on that afternoon I was in Block 11, which was situated opposite the crematorium; and although we did not see the execution itself, we heard every shot; and we saw the condemned men who were waiting on the stairway opposite us embrace each other before they parted.

M. DUBOST: Who were these men who were condemned?

LAMPE: The majority of them were Soviet officers, political commissars, or members of the Bolshevik Party. They came from Oflags.

M. DUBOST: I beg your pardon, but were there officers among them?


M. DUBOST: Did you know where they came from?

LAMPE: It was very difficult to know from what camp they came because, as a general rule, they were isolated when they arrived in camp. They were taken either direct to the prison or else to Block 20, which was an annex of the prison, about which I shall have occasion . . .

M. DUBOST: How did you know they were officers?

LAMPE: Because we were able to communicate with them.

M. DUBOST: Did all of them come from prisoner-of-war camps?

LAMPE: Probably.

M. DUBOST: You did not really know?

LAMPE: No, we did not know. We were chiefly interested in finding out of what nationality they were and did not ask other details.

M. DUBOST: Do you know where the British, American, and Dutch officers came from, about whom you have just spoken and who were executed on the steps leading to the quarry?

LAMPE: I believe they came from the Netherlands, especially the Air Force officers. They had probably bailed out after having been shot down and had hidden themselves while trying to go back to their lines.

M. DUBOST: Did the Mauthausen prisoners know that prisoners of war, officers or noncommissioned officers, were executed?

LAMPE: That was a frequent occurrence.

M. DUBOST: A frequent occurrence?

LAMPE: Yes, very frequent.

M. DUBOST: Do you know about any mass executions of the men kept at Mauthausen?

LAMPE: I know of many instances.

M. DUBOST: Could you cite a few?

LAMPE: Besides those I have already described, I feel I ought to mention what happened to part of a convoy coming from Sachsenhausen which was executed by a special method. This was on 17 February 1945.

When the Allied armies were advancing, various camps were moved back toward Austria. Of a convoy of 2,500 internees which had left Sachsenhausen, only about 1,700 were left when they arrived at Mauthausen on the morning of the 17th of February. 800 had died or had been killed in the course of the journey.

The Mauthausen Camp was at that time, if I may use this expression, completely choked. So when the 1,700 survivors of this convoy arrived, Kommandant Dachmeier had selected 400 from among them. He encouraged the sick, the old, and the weak prisoners to come forward with the idea that they might be taken to the infirmary. These 400 men, who had either come forward of their own free will or had been arbitrarily selected, were stripped entirely naked and left for 18 hours in weather 18 degrees below zero, between the laundry building and the wall of the camp. The congestion . . .

M. DUBOST: You saw that yourself?

LAMPE: I saw it personally.

M. DUBOST: You are citing this as an actual witness, seen with your own eyes?

LAMPE: Exactly.

M. DUBOST: In what part of the camp were you at that time?

LAMPE: This scene lasted, as I said, 18 hours; and when we went in or came out of the camp we saw these unfortunate men.

M. DUBOST: Very well. Will you please continue? You have spoken of the visit of Himmler and of the execution of Soviet officers and commissars. Did you frequently see German personalities in the camp?

LAMPE: Yes, but I cannot give you the names.

M. DUBOST: You did not know them?

LAMPE: One could hardly mistake Himmler.

M. DUBOST: But you did know they were eminent personalities?

LAMPE: We did indeed. First of all, these personages were always surrounded by a complete staff, who went through the prison itself and particularly adjoining blocks.

If you will allow me, I would like to go on with my description of the murder of these 400 people from Sachsenhausen. I said that after selecting the sick, the feeble and the older prisoners, Dachmeier, the camp commander, gave orders that these men should be stripped entirely naked in weather 18 degrees below zero. Several of them rapidly got congestion of the lungs, but that did not seem fast enough for the SS. Three times during the night these men were sent down to the shower-baths; three times they were drenched for half an hour in freezing water and then made to come up without being dried. In the morning when the gangs went to work the corpses were strewn over the ground. I must add that the last of them were finished off with blows from an axe.

I now give the most positive testimony of an occurrence which can easily be verified. Among those 400 men was a captain in the French cavalry, Captain Dedionne, who today is a major in the Ministry of War. This captain was among the 400. He owes his life to the fact that he hid among the corpses and thus escaped the blows of the axe. When the corpses were taken to the crematorium he managed to get away across the camp, but not without having received a blow on the shoulder which has left a mark for life.

He was caught again by the SS. What saved him was probably the fact that the SS considered it very funny that a live man should emerge from a heap of corpses. We took care of him, we helped him, and we brought him back to France.

M. DUBOST: Do you know why this execution was carried out?

LAMPE: Because there were too many people in the camp; because the prisoners coming from all the camps that were falling back could not be drafted into working gangs at a quick enough pace. The blocks were overcrowded. That is the only explanation that was given.

M. DUBOST: Do you know who gave the order to exterminate the British, American, and Dutch officers whom you saw put to death in the quarry?

LAMPE: I believe I said these officers had been condemned to death by German tribunals.


LAMPE: Probably a few of them had been condemned many months before and they were taken to Mauthausen for the sentence to be carried out. It is probable that the order came from Berlin.

M. DUBOST: Did you know under what conditions the “Revier” (infirmary) was built?

LAMPE: Here I have to state that the infirmary was built before my arrival at the camp.

M. DUBOST: So you are giving us indirect testimony?

LAMPE: Yes, indirect testimony. But I heard it from all the internees, also the SS themselves. The Revier was built by the first Soviet prisoners who arrived in Mauthausen. Four thousand Soviet soldiers died; they were murdered, massacred, during the construction of the 8 blocks of the Revier. These massacres made such a deep impression that the Revier was always referred to as the “Russen Lager” (Russian Camp). The SS themselves called the infirmary the Russian camp.

M. DUBOST: How many Frenchmen were you at Mauthausen?

LAMPE: There were in Mauthausen and its dependencies about 10,000 Frenchmen.

M. DUBOST: How many of you came back?

LAMPE: Three thousand of us came back.

M. DUBOST: There were some Spaniards with you also?

LAMPE: Eight thousand Spaniards arrived in Mauthausen in 1941, towards the end of the year. When we left, at the end of April 1945, there were still about 1,600. All the rest had been exterminated.

M. DUBOST: Where did these Spaniards come from?

LAMPE: These Spaniards came mostly from labor companies which had been formed in 1939 and 1940 in France, or else they had been delivered by the Vichy Government to the Germans direct.

M. DUBOST: Is this all you have to tell us?

LAMPE: With the permission of the Tribunal, I would like to cite another example of atrocity which remains clearly in my memory. This took place also during September 1944. I am sorry I cannot remember the exact date, but I do know it was a Saturday, because on Saturday at Mauthausen all the outside detachments had to answer evening roll call inside the camp. That took place only on Saturday nights and on Sunday mornings.

That evening the roll call took longer than usual. Someone was missing. After a long wait and searches carried out in the various blocks, they found a Russian, a Soviet prisoner, who perhaps had fallen asleep and had forgotten to answer roll call. What the reason was we never knew, but at any rate he was not present at roll call. Immediately the dogs and the SS went up to the poor wretch, and before the whole camp—I was in the front row, not because I wanted to be but because we were arranged like that—we witnessed the fury of the dogs let loose upon this unfortunate Russian. He was tom to pieces in the presence of the whole camp. I must add that this man, in spite of his sufferings, faced his death in a particularly noble manner.

M. DUBOST: What were the living conditions of the prisoners like? Were they all treated the same or were they treated differently according to their origin and nationality or, perhaps according to their ethnic type, their particular race, shall we say?

LAMPE: As a general rule the camp regime was the same for all nationalities, with the exception of the quarantine blocks and the annexes of the prison. The kind of work we did, the particular units to which we were attached, sometimes allowed us to get a little more than usual; for instance, those who worked in the kitchens and those who worked in the stores certainly did get a little more.

M. DUBOST: Were, for instance, Jews permitted to work in the kitchens or the store rooms?

LAMPE: At Mauthausen the Jews had the hardest tasks of all. I must point out that, until December 1943, the Jews did not live more than three months at Mauthausen. There were very few of them at the end.

M. DUBOST: What happened in that camp after the murder of Heydrich?

LAMPE: In that connection there was a particularly dramatic episode. At Mauthausen there were 3,000 Czechs, 600 of whom were intellectuals. After the murder of Heydrich, the Czech colony in the camp was exterminated with the exception of 300 out of the 3,000 and six intellectuals out of the 600 that were in the camp.

M. DUBOST: Did anyone speak to you of scientific experiments?

LAMPE: They were commonplace at Mauthausen, as they were in other camps. But we had evidence which I think has been found: the two skulls which were used as paper weights by the chief SS medical officer. These were the skulls of two young Dutch Jews who had been selected from a convoy of 800 because they had fine teeth.

To make this selection the SS doctor had led these two young Dutch Jews to believe that they would not suffer the fate of their comrades of the convoy. He had said to them “Jews do not live here. I need two strong, healthy, young men for surgical experiments. You have your choice; either you offer yourselves for these experiments, or else you will suffer the fate of the others.”

These two Jews were taken down to the Revier; one of them had his kidney removed, the other his stomach. Then they had benzine injected into the heart and were decapitated. As I said, these two skulls, with the fine sets of teeth, were on the desk of the chief SS doctor on the day of liberation.

M. DUBOST: At the time of Himmler’s visit—I would like to come back to that question—are you certain that you recognized Himmler and saw him presiding over the executions?


M. DUBOST: Do you think that all members of the German Government were unaware of what was taking place in Mauthausen? The visits you received, were they visits by the SS simply, or were they visits of other personalities?

LAMPE: As regards your first question, we all knew Himmler; and even if we had not known him, everyone in the camp knew of his visit. Also the SS told us a few days before that his visit was expected. Himmler was present at the beginning of the executions of the Soviet officers; but as I said a little while ago, these executions lasted throughout the afternoon; and he did not remain until the end. With regard to . . .

M. DUBOST: Is it possible that only the SS knew what happened in the camp? Was the camp visited by other personalities than the SS? Did you know the SS uniforms? The people you saw, the authorities you saw—did they all wear uniforms?

LAMPE: The personalities that we saw at the camp were, generally speaking, soldiers and officers. Some time afterward, a few weeks before the liberation, we had a visit from the Gauleiter of the Gau Oberdonau. We also had frequent visits from members of the Gestapo in plain clothes. The German population, that is, the Austrian population, were perfectly aware of what was going on at Mauthausen. The working squads were nearly all for work outside. I said just now that I was working at Messerschmidt’s. The foremen were mobilized German civilians who, in the evening, went home to their families. They knew quite well of our sufferings and privations. They frequently saw men fetched from the shop to be executed, and they could bear witness to most of the massacres I mentioned a little while ago.

I should add that once we received—I am sorry I put it like that—once there arrived in Mauthausen 30 firemen from Vienna. They were imprisoned, I think, for having taken part in some sort of workers’ activity. The firemen from Vienna told us that, when one wanted to frighten children in Vienna, one said to them, “If you are not good, I will send you to Mauthausen.”

Another detail, a more concrete one: Mauthausen Camp is built on a plateau and every night the chimneys of the crematorium would light up the whole district, and everyone knew what the crematorium was for.

Another detail: The town of Mauthausen was situated 5 kilometers from the camp. The convoys of deportees were brought to the station of the town. The whole population could see these convoys pass. The whole population knew in what state these convoys were brought into the camp.

M. DUBOST: Thank you very much.

THE PRESIDENT: Does the Soviet Prosecutor wish to ask any questions?

GENERAL R. A. RUDENKO (Chief Prosecutor for the U.S.S.R.): I should like to ask a few questions. Can you tell me, Witness, why was the execution of the 50 Soviet officers ordered? Why were they executed?

LAMPE: As regards the specific case of these 50 officers, I do not know the reasons why they were condemned and executed; but as a general rule, all Soviet officers, all Soviet commissars, or members of the Bolshevist Party were executed at Mauthausen. If a few among them succeeded in slipping through, it is because their records were not known to the SS.

GEN. RUDENKO: You affirm that Himmler was present at the execution of those 50 Soviet officers?

LAMPE: I testify to the fact because I saw him with my own eyes.

GEN. RUDENKO: Can you give us more precise details about the execution of the 4,000 Soviet prisoners of war which you have just mentioned?

LAMPE: I cannot add much to what I have said, except that these men were assassinated on the job probably because the work demanded of them was beyond their strength and they were too underfed to perform these tasks. They were murdered on the spot by blows with a cudgel or struck down by the SS; they were driven by the SS to the wire fence and shot down by the sentinels in the watch towers. I cannot give more details because, as I said, I was not a witness, an eyewitness.

GEN. RUDENKO: That is quite clear. And now one more question: Can you give me a more detailed statement concerning the destruction of the Czech colony?

LAMPE: I speak with the same reservation as before. I was not in the camp at the time of the extermination of the 3,000 Czechs; but the survivors with whom I spoke in 1944 were unanimous in confirming the accuracy of these facts, and probably, as far as their own country is concerned, have drawn up a list of the murdered men.

GEN. RUDENKO: This means, if I have understood you correctly, that in the camp where you were interned executions were carried out without trial or inquiry. Every member of the SS had the right to kill an internee. Have I understood your statement correctly?

LAMPE: Yes, that is so. The life of a man at Mauthausen counted for absolutely nothing.

GEN. RUDENKO: I thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any member of the defendants’ counsel wish to ask any questions of this witness? . . . Then the witness can retire. Witness, a moment.

THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Francis Biddle): Do you know how many guards there were at the camp?

LAMPE: The number of the guard varied, but as a general rule there were 1,200 SS and soldiers of the Volkssturm. However, it should be said that only 50 to 60 SS were authorized to come inside the camp.

THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): Were they SS men that were authorized to go into the camp?

LAMPE: Yes, they were.

THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): All SS men?

LAMPE: All of them were SS.

THE PRESIDENT: The witness can retire.

M. DUBOST: Thank you. With your permission, gentlemen, we shall proceed with the presentation of our case on German atrocities in the western countries of Europe from 1939 to 1945 by retaining from these testimonies the particular facts, which all equally constitute crimes against common law. The general idea, around which we have grouped all our work and our statement, is that of German terror intentionally conceived as an instrument for governing all the enslaved peoples.

We shall remember the testimony brought by this French witness who said that in Vienna, when one wished to frighten a child, one told it about Mauthausen.

The people who were arrested in the western countries were deported to Germany where they were put into camps or into prisons. The information that we have concerning the prisons has been taken from the official report of the Prisoners of War Ministry, which we have already read; it is the bound volume which was in your hands this morning. In it you will find, on Page 35, and Page 36 to Page 42, a detailed statement as to what the prisons were like in Germany. The prison at Cologne is situated between the freight station and the main station and the Chief Prosecutor in Cologne, in a report . . .


M. DUBOST: Yes, Your Honor, F-274, on Page 35. The Document was submitted under Exhibit Number RF-301. The Tribunal will see that the prison at Cologne, where many Frenchmen were interned, was situated between the freight station and the main station so that the Chief Prosecutor in Cologne wrote, in a report which was used by the Ministry of Deportees and Prisoners of War when compiling the book which is before you, that the situation of that prison was so dangerous that no enterprise engaged in war work would undertake to furnish its precious materials to a factory in this area. The prisoners could not take shelter during the air attacks. They remained locked in their cells, even in case of fire.

The victims of air attacks in the prisons were numerous. The May 1944 raid claimed 200 victims in the prison at Alexander Platz in Berlin. At Aachen the buildings were always dirty, damp, and very small; and the prisoners numbered three or four times as many as the facilities permitted. In the Münster prison the women who were there in November 1943 lived underground without any air. In Frankfurt the prisoners had as cells a sort of iron cage, 2 by 1.5 meters. Hygiene was impossible. At Aachen, as in many other prisons, the prisoners had only one bucket in the middle of the room, and it was forbidden to empty it during the day.

The food ration was extremely small. As a rule, ersatz coffee in the morning with a thin slice of bread; soup at noon; a thin slice of bread at night with a little margarine or sausage or jam.

The prisoners were forced to do extremely heavy work in war industries, in food factories, in spinning mills. No matter what kind of work it was, at least twelve hours of labor were required—at Cologne, in particular, from 7 o’clock in the morning to 9 or 10 o’clock in the evening, that is to say, 14 or 15 consecutive hours. I am still quoting from the file of the Public Prosecutor of Cologne, a document, Number 87, sent to us by the Ministry of Prisoners. A shoe factory gave work to the inmates of 18 German prisons . . . I quote from the same document:

“Most of the French flatly refused to work in war industries, for example, the manufacture of gas masks, filing of cast iron plates, slides for shells, radio or telephone apparatus intended for the Army. In such cases Berlin gave orders for the recalcitrants to be sent to punishment camps. An example of this was the sending of women from Kottbus to Ravensbrück on 13 November 1944. The Geneva Convention was, of course, not applied.

“The political prisoners frequently had to remove unexploded bombs.”

This is the official German text of the Public Prosecutor of Cologne.

There was no medical supervision. There were no prophylactic measures taken in these prisons in case of epidemics, or else the SS doctor intentionally gave the wrong instructions.

At the prison of Dietz-an-der-Lahn, under the eyes of the director, Gammradt, a former medical officer in the German Army, the SS or SA guards struck the prisoners. Dysentery, diphtheria, pulmonary diseases, and pleurisy were not reasons for stopping work; and those who were dangerously ill were forced to work to the very limit of their strength and were only admitted to the hospital in exceptional cases.

There were many petty persecutions. In Aachen the presence of a Jewish woman prisoner in a cell caused the other prisoners to lose half of their ration. At Amrasch they had to go to toilets only when ordered. At Magdeburg recalcitrants had to make one hundred genuflexions before the guards. Interrogations were carried out in the same manner as in France, that is, the victims were brutally treated and were given practically no food.

At Asperg the doctor had heart injections given to the prisoners so that they died. At Cologne those condemned to death were perpetually kept in chains. At Sonnenburg those who were dying were given a greenish liquor to drink which hastened their death. In Hamburg sick Jews were forced to dig their own graves until, exhausted, they fell into them. We are still speaking of French, Belgians, Dutch, Luxembourgers, Danes, or Norwegians interned in German prisons. These descriptions apply only to citizens of those countries. In the Börse prison in Berlin, Jewish babies were massacred before the eyes of their mothers. The sterilization of men is confirmed by German documents in the file of the Prosecutor of Cologne, which contains a ruling to the effect that the victims cannot be reinstated in their military rights. These files also contain documents which show the role played by children who were in prison. They had to work inside the prison. A German functionary belonging to the prison service inquired as to the decision to be taken with regard to a 4-month-old baby, which was brought to the prison at the same time as its father and mother.

What kind of people were the prison staff? They were “recruited amongst the NSKK (National Socialist Motor Corps) and the SA because of their political views and because they were above suspicion and accustomed to harsh discipline.” This is also to be found in the file of the Public Prosecutor at Cologne, Page 39, last paragraph.

At Rheinbach those condemned to death and to be executed in Cologne were beaten to death for breaches of discipline. We can easily imagine the brutality of the men who were in charge of the prisoners. The German official text will furnish us with details regarding the executions. The condemned were guillotined. Nearly all the condemned showed surprise, so say the German documents of which we are giving you a summary, and expressed their dissatisfaction at being guillotined instead of being shot for the patriotic deeds of which they were declared guilty. They thought they deserved to be treated as soldiers.

Among those executed in Cologne were some young people of eighteen and nineteen years of age and one woman. Some French women, who were political prisoners, were taken from the Lübeck prison in order to be executed in Hamburg. They were nearly always charged with the same thing, “helping the enemy.” The flies are incomplete, but we have those of the chief Prosecutor of Cologne. In every case the offenses committed were of the same nature. Keitel systematically rejected all appeals for mercy which were submitted to him.

Although the lot of those who were held in the prisons was very hard and sometimes terrible, it was infinitely less cruel than the fate of those Frenchmen who had the misfortune to be interned in the concentration camps. The Tribunal is well informed about these camps; my colleagues of the United Nations have presented a long statement on this matter. The Tribunal will remember that it has already been shown a map indicating the exact location of every camp which existed in Germany and in the occupied countries. We shall not, therefore, revert to the geographical distribution of the camps.

With the permission of the Tribunal I should now like to deal with the conditions under which Frenchmen and nationals of the western occupied countries were taken to these camps. Before their departure the victims of arbitrary arrests, such as I described to you this morning, were brought together in prisons or in assembly camps in France.

The main assembly camp in France was at Compiègne. It is from there that most of the deportees left who were to be sent to Germany. There were two other assembly camps, Beaune-La-Rolande and Pithiviers, reserved especially for Jews, and Drancy. The conditions under which people were interned in those camps were somewhat similar to those under which internees in the German prisons lived. With your permission, I shall not dwell any longer on this. The Tribunal will have taken judicial notice of the declarations made by M. Blechmann and Mme. Jacob in Document Number F-457, which I am now lodging as Exhibit Number RF-328. To avoid making these discussions too long and too ponderous with long quotations and testimonies which, after all, are very similar, we shall confine ourselves to reading to the Tribunal a passage from the testimony of Mme. Jacob concerning the conduct of the German Red Cross. This passage is to be found at the bottom of Page 4 of the French document:

“We received a visit from several German personalities, such as Stülpnagel, Du Paty de Clam, Commissioner for Jewish Questions, and Colonel Baron Von Berg, Vice President of the German Red Cross. This Von Berg was very formal and very pompous. He always wore the small insignia of the Red Cross, which did not prevent his being inhuman and a thief.”

And on Page 6, the penultimate paragraph, Colonel Von Berg was, as we have already said earlier, very pompous. I skip two lines.

“In spite of his title of Vice President of the German Red Cross, of which he dared to wear the insignia, he selected at random a number of our comrades for deportation.”

Concerning the assembly center of Compiègne, the Tribunal will find, in Document F-274, Exhibit Number 301, Pages 14 and 15, some details about the fate of the internees. I do not think it is necessary to read them.

In Norway, Holland, and Belgium there were, as in France, assembly camps. The most typical of these camps, and certainly the best known, is the Breendonck Camp in Belgium, about which it is necessary to give the Tribunal a few details because a great many Belgians were interned there and died of privations, hardships, and tortures of all kinds; or were executed either by shooting or by hanging.

This camp was established in the Fortress of Breendonck in 1940, and we are now extracting from a document which we have already deposited under Document Number F-231 and which is also known under UK-76 (Exhibit Number RF-329), a few details about the conditions prevailing in that camp. It is the fourth document in your document book and is entitled “Report on the Concentration Camp of Breendonck.”

THE PRESIDENT: What did you say the name of the camp is?

M. DUBOST: Breendonck, B-r-e-e-n-d-o-n-c-k.

We will ask the Tribunal to be good enough to grant us a few minutes. Our duty is to expose in rather more detail the conditions at this camp, because a considerable number of Belgians were interned there and their internment took a rather special form.

The Germans occupied this fort in August 1940, and they brought the internees there in September. They were Jews. The Belgian Government has not been able to find out how many people were interned from September 1940 to August 1944, when the camp was evacuated and Belgium liberated. Nevertheless, it is thought that about 3,000 to 3,600 internees passed through the camp of Breendonck. About 250 died of privation, 450 were shot, and 12 were hanged.

But we must bear in mind the fact that the majority of the prisoners in Breendonck were transferred at various times to camps in Germany. Most of these transferred prisoners did not return. There should, therefore, be added to those who died in Breendonck, all those who did not survive their captivity in Germany. Various categories of prisoners were taken into the camp: Jews—for whom the regime was more severe than for the others—Communists and Marxists, of which there were a good many, in spite of the fact that those who interrogated them had nothing definite against them; persons who belonged to the resistance, people who had been denounced to the Germans, hostages—among them M. Bouchery, former minister, and M. Van Kesbeek, who was a liberal deputy, were interned there for ten weeks as a reprisal for the throwing of a grenade on the main square of Malines. These two died after their liberation as a result of the ill-treatment which they endured in that camp.

There were also in that camp some black market operators, and the Belgian Government says of them that “they were not ill-treated, and were even given preferential treatment.” That is in Paragraph (e) of Page 2.

The prisoners were compelled to work. The most repugnant collective punishments were inflicted on the slightest pretext. One of these punishments consisted in forcing the internees to crawl under the beds and to stand up at command; this was done to the accompaniment of whipping. You will find that at the top of Page 10.

In the same page is a description of the conditions of the prisoners who were isolated from the others and kept in solitary confinement. They were forced to wear hoods every time they had to leave their cells or when they had to come in contact with other prisoners.

THE PRESIDENT: This is a long report, is it not?

M. DUBOST: That is why I am summarizing it rather than reading it; and I do not think I can make it any shorter, as it was given to me by the Belgian Government, which attaches a great importance to the brutalities, excesses, and atrocities that were committed by the Germans in the Camp of Breendonck and suffered by the whole of the population, especially the Belgian elite.

THE PRESIDENT: Very well, I understand. You are summarizing it?

M. DUBOST: I am now summarizing it, Mr. President. I had reached, in my summary, the description of the life of these prisoners who had been put into cells and who sometimes wore handcuffs and had shackles on their feet attached to an iron ring in the wall. They could not leave their cells without being forced to wear hoods.

One of these prisoners, M. Paquet, states that he spent eight months under such a regime; and when, one day, he tried to lift the hood to see his way, he received a violent blow with the butt of a gun which broke three vertebrae in his neck.

Page 12 concerns the following: discipline, labor, acts of brutality, murders. We are told that the work of the prisoners consisted in removing the earth covering the fort and carrying it outside the moat. This work was done by hand. It was very laborious and dangerous and caused the loss of a great many human lives. Small trucks were used. The trucks were hurled along the rails by the SS and often broke the legs of the prisoners who were not warned of their approach. The SS made a game of this, and at the slightest stoppage of work they would rush at the internees and beat them.

On the same page we are told that frequently, for no reason at all, the prisoners were thrown into the moat surrounding the fort. According to the report of the Belgian Government, dozens of prisoners were drowned. Some prisoners were killed after they had been buried up to their necks, and the SS finished them off by kicking them or beating them with a stick. Food, clothing, correspondence, and medical care—all this information is given in this report as in all the other similar reports which I have already read to you.

The conclusion is important and should be read in part—second paragraph:

“The former internees of Breendonck, many of whom have had experience of the concentration camps in Germany—Buchenwald, Neuengamme, Oranienburg—state that, generally speaking, the conditions prevailing at Breendonck in regard to discipline and food were worse. They add that in the camps in Germany, which were more crowded, they felt less under the domination of their guards and had the feeling that their lives were less in danger.”

The figures given in this report are only minimum figures. To give but one example (last paragraph of the last page), M. Verheirstraeten declares that he put 120 people in their coffins during the two months of December 1942 and January 1943. If one bears in mind the executions of the 6th and 13th of January, each of which accounted for the lives of 20 persons, we see that at that time, that is to say, over a period of two months, 80 persons died of disease or ill-treatment. From these camps the internees were transported to Germany in convoys, and a description of these should be given to the Tribunal.

The Tribunal should know, first of all, that from France alone, excluding the three Departments of the Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin, and Moselle, 326 convoys left between 1 January 1944 and 25 August of the same year, that is to say, an average of ten convoys a week. Now each convoy transported from 1,000 to 2,000 persons; and we know now, from what our witness said just now, that each truck carried from 60 to 120 individuals. It appears that there left from France, excluding the above-mentioned three northern departments, 3 convoys in 1940, 19 convoys in 1941, 104 convoys in 1942, and 257 convoys in 1943. These are the figures given in the documents submitted under Number F-274, Exhibit Number RF-301, Page 14. These convoys nearly always left from the Compiègne Camp where more than 50,000 internees were registered and from there 78 convoys left in 1943 and 95 convoys in 1944.

The purpose of these deportations was to terrorize the populations. The Tribunal will remember the text already read; how the families, not knowing what became of the internees, were seized with terror and advantage was taken of this to round-up more workers to help German labor which had become depleted owing to the war with Russia.

The manner in which these deportations were carried out not only made it possible more or less to select this labor; but it constituted the first stage of a new aspect of German policy, that is, purely and simply the extermination of all racial or intellectual categories whose political activity appeared as a menace to the Nazi leaders.

These deportees, who were locked up 80 or 120 in each truck, in any season, could neither sit nor crouch and were given nothing whatsoever to eat or drink during their journey. In this connection we would particularly like to bring Dr. Steinberg’s testimony taken by Lieutenant Colonel Badin of the Office for Inquiry into War Crimes in Paris, Document Number F-392, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-330, which is the 12th in your document book. We will read only a few paragraphs on Page 2:

“We were crowded into cattle trucks, about 70 in each. Sanitary conditions were frightful. Our journey lasted two days. We reached Auschwitz on 24 June 1942. It should be noted that we had been given no food at all when we left and that we had to live during those two days on what little food we had taken with us from Drancy.”

The deportees were at times refused water by the German Red Cross. Evidence was taken by the Ministry of Prisoners and Deportees, and this appears in Document RF-301, Page 18. It is about a convoy of Jewish women which left Bobigny station on 19 June 1942:

“They travelled for three days and three nights, dying of thirst. At Breslau they begged the nurses of the German Red Cross to give them a little water, but in vain.”

Moreover, Lieutenant Geneste and Dr. Bloch have testified to the same facts and other different facts; and in Document Number F-321, Exhibit Number RF-331, entitled “Concentration Camps,” which we have been able to submit to you in French, Russian, and German, the English version having been exhausted, on Page 21, you will find, “In the station of Bremen water was refused to us by the German Red Cross, who said that there was no water.” This is the testimony by Lieutenant Geneste of O.R.C.G. Concerning this conduct of the German Red Cross and to finish dealing with the subject, there is one more word to be said. Document RF-331 gives you, on Page 162, the proof that that was an ambulance car bearing a red cross which carried gas in iron containers destined for the gas chambers of Auschwitz Camp.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will adjourn now until Monday.

[The Tribunal adjourned until 28 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Monday, 28 January 1946

Morning Session

M. DUBOST: With the authorization of the Court, I should like to proceed with this part of the presentation of the French case by hearing a witness who, for more than 3 years, lived in German concentration camps.

[The witness, Mme. Vaillant-Couturier, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: Would you stand up, please? Do you wish to swear the French oath? Will you tell me your name?

MADAME MARIE CLAUDE VAILLANT-COUTURIER (Witness): Claude Vaillant-Couturier.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me: I swear that I will speak without hate or fear, that I will tell the truth, all the truth, nothing but the truth.

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: Raise your right hand and say, “I swear.”


THE PRESIDENT: Please, will you sit down and speak slowly. Your name is?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Vaillant-Couturier, Marie, Claude, Vögel.

M. DUBOST: Is your name Madame Vaillant-Couturier?


M. DUBOST: You are the widow of M. Vaillant-Couturier?


M. DUBOST: You were born in Paris on 3 November 1912?


M. DUBOST: And you are of French nationality, French born, and of parents who were of French nationality?


M. DUBOST: You are a deputy in the Constituent Assembly?


M. DUBOST: You are a Knight of the Legion of Honor?


M. DUBOST: You have just been decorated by General Legentilhomme at the Invalides?


M. DUBOST: Were you arrested and deported? Will you please give your testimony?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I was arrested on 9 February 1942 by Petain’s French police, who handed me over to the German authorities after 6 weeks. I arrived on 20 March at Santé prison in the German quarter. I was questioned on 9 June 1942. At the end of my interrogation they wanted me to sign a statement which was not consistent with what I had said. I refused to sign it. The officer who had questioned me threatened me; and when I told him that I was not afraid of death nor of being shot, he said, “But we have at our disposal means for killing that are far worse than merely shooting.” And the interpreter said to me, “You do not know what you have just done. You are going to leave for a concentration camp in Germany. One never comes back from there.”

M. DUBOST: You were then taken to prison?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I was taken back to the Santé prison where I was placed in solitary confinement. However, I was able to communicate with my neighbors through the piping and the windows. I was in a cell next to that of Georges Politzer, the philosopher, and Jacques Solomon, physicist. Mr. Solomon is the son-in-law of Professor Langevin, a pupil of Curie, one of the first to study atomic disintegration.

Georges Politzer told me through the piping that during his interrogation, after having been tortured, he was asked whether he would write theoretical pamphlets for National Socialism. When he refused, he was told that he would be in the first train of hostages to be shot.

As for Jacques Solomon, he also was horribly tortured and then thrown into a dark cell and came out only on the day of his execution to say goodbye to his wife, who also was under arrest at the Santé. Hélène Solomon-Langevin told me in Romainville, where I found her when I left the Santé, that when she went to her husband he moaned and said, “I cannot take you in my arms, because I can no longer move them.”

Every time that the internees came back from their questioning one could hear moaning through the windows, and they all said that they could not make any movements.

Several times during the 5 months I spent at the Santé hostages were taken to be shot. When I left the Santé on 20 August 1942, I was taken to the Fortress of Romainville, which was a camp for hostages. There I was present on two occasions when they took hostages, on 21 August and 22 September. Among the hostages who were taken away were the husbands of the women who were with me and who left for Auschwitz. Most of them died there. These women, for the most part, had been arrested only because of the activity of their husbands. They themselves had done nothing.

M. DUBOST: When did you leave for Auschwitz?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I left for Auschwitz on 23 January 1943, and arrived there on the 27th.

M. DUBOST: Were you with a convoy?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I was with a convoy of 230 French women; among us were Danielle Casanova who died in Auschwitz, Maï Politzer who died in Auschwitz, and Hélène Solomon. There were some elderly women . . .

M. DUBOST: What was their social position?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: They were intellectuals, school teachers; they came from all walks of life. Maï Politzer was a doctor, and the wife of the philosopher Georges Politzer. Hélène Solomon is the wife of the physicist Solomon; she is the daughter of Professor Langevin. Danielle Casanova was a dental surgeon and she was very active among the women. It is she who organized a resistance movement among the wives of prisoners.

M. DUBOST: How many of you came back out of 230?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Forty-nine. In the convoy there were some elderly women. I remember one who was 67 and had been arrested because she had in her kitchen the shotgun of her husband, which she kept as a souvenir and had not declared because she did not want it to be taken from her. She died after a fortnight at Auschwitz.

THE PRESIDENT: When you said only 49 came back, did you mean only 49 arrived at Auschwitz.

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No, only 49 came back to France.

There were also cripples, among them a singer who had only one leg. She was taken out and gassed at Auschwitz. There was also a young girl of 16, a college girl, Claudine Guérin; she also died at Auschwitz. There were also two women who had been acquitted by the German military tribunal, Marie Alonzo and Marie-Thérèse Fleuri; they died at Auschwitz.

It was a terrible journey. We were 60 in a car and we were given no food or drink during the journey. At the various stopping places we asked the Lorraine soldiers of the Wehrmacht who were guarding us whether we would arrive soon; and they replied, “If you knew where you are going you would not be in a hurry to get there.”

We arrived at Auschwitz at dawn. The seals on our cars were broken, and we were driven out by blows with the butt end of a rifle, and taken to the Birkenau Camp, a section of the Auschwitz Camp. It is situated in the middle of a great plain, which was frozen in the month of January. During this part of the journey we had to drag our luggage. As we passed through the door we knew only too well how slender our chances were that we would come out again, for we had already met columns of living skeletons going to work; and as we entered we sang “The Marseillaise” to keep up our courage.

We were led to a large shed, then to the disinfecting station. There our heads were shaved and our registration numbers were tattooed on the left forearm. Then we were taken into a large room for a steam bath and a cold shower. In spite of the fact that we were naked, all this took place in the presence of SS men and women. We were then given clothing which was soiled and torn, a cotton dress and jacket of the same material.

As all this had taken several hours, we saw from the windows of the block where we were, the camp of the men; and toward the evening an orchestra came in. It was snowing and we wondered why they were playing music. We then saw that the camp foremen were returning to the camp. Each foreman was followed by men who were carrying the dead. As they could hardly drag themselves along, every time they stumbled they were put on their feet again by being kicked or by blows with the butt end of a rifle.

After that we were taken to the block where we were to live. There were no beds but only bunks, measuring 2 by 2 meters, and there nine of us had to sleep the first night without any mattress or blanket. We remained in blocks of this kind for several months. We could not sleep all night, because every time one of the nine moved—this happened unceasingly because we were all ill—she disturbed the whole row.

At 3:30 in the morning the shouting of the guards woke us up, and with cudgel blows we were driven from our bunks to go to roll call. Nothing in the world could release us from going to the roll call; even those who were dying had to be dragged there. We had to stand there in rows of five until dawn, that is, 7 or 8 o’clock in the morning in winter; and when there was a fog, sometimes until noon. Then the commandos would start on their way to work.

M. DUBOST: Excuse me, can you describe the roll call?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: For roll call we were lined up in rows of five; and we waited until daybreak, until the Aufseherinnen, the German women guards in uniform, came to count us. They had cudgels and they beat us more or less at random.

We had a comrade, Germaine Renaud, a school teacher from Azay-le-Rideau in France, who had her skull broken before my eyes from a blow with a cudgel during the roll call.

The work at Auschwitz consisted of clearing demolished houses, road building, and especially the draining of marsh land. This was by far the hardest work, for all day long we had our feet in the water and there was the danger of being sucked down. It frequently happened that we had to pull out a comrade who had sunk in up to the waist.

During the work the SS men and women who stood guard over us would beat us with cudgels and set their dogs on us. Many of our friends had their legs torn by the dogs. I even saw a woman torn to pieces and die under my very eyes when Tauber, a member of the SS, encouraged his dog to attack her and grinned at the sight.

The causes of death were extremely numerous. First of all, there was the complete lack of washing facilities. When we arrived at Auschwitz, for 12,000 internees there was only one tap of water, unfit for drinking, and it was not always flowing. As this tap was in the German wash house we could reach it only by passing through the guards, who were German common-law women prisoners, and they beat us horribly as we went by. It was therefore almost impossible to wash ourselves or our clothes. For more than 3 months we remained without changing our clothes. When there was snow, we melted some to wash in. Later, in the spring, when we went to work we would drink from a puddle by the road-side and then wash our underclothes in it. We took turns washing our hands in this dirty water. Our companions were dying of thirst, because we got only half a cup of some herbal tea twice a day.

M. DUBOST: Please describe in detail one of the roll calls at the beginning of February.

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: On 5 February there was what is called a general roll call.

M. DUBOST: In what year was that?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: In 1943. At 3:30 the whole camp . . .

M. DUBOST: In the morning at 3:30?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: In the morning at 3:30 the whole camp was awakened and sent out on the plain, whereas normally the roll call was at 3:30 but inside the camp. We remained out in front of the camp until 5 in the afternoon, in the snow, without any food. Then when the signal was given we had to go through the door one by one, and we were struck in the back with a cudgel, each one of us, in order to make us run. Those who could not run, either because they were too old or too ill were caught by a hook and taken to Block 25, “waiting block” for the gas chamber. On that day 10 of the French women of our convoy were thus caught and taken to Block 25.

When all the internees were back in the camp, a party to which I belonged was organized to go and pick up the bodies of the dead which were scattered over the plain as on a battlefield. We carried to the yard of Block 25 the dead and the dying without distinction, and they remained there stacked up in a pile.

This Block 25, which was the anteroom of the gas chamber, if one may express it so, is well known to me because at that time we had been transferred to Block 26 and our windows opened on the yard of Number 25. One saw stacks of corpses piled up in the courtyard, and from time to time a hand or a head would stir among the bodies, trying to free itself. It was a dying woman attempting to get free and live. The rate of mortality in that block was even more terrible than elsewhere because, having been condemned to death, they received food or drink only if there was something left in the cans in the kitchen; which means that very often they went for several days without a drop of water.

One of our companions, Annette Épaux, a fine young woman of 30, passing the block one day, was overcome with pity for those women who moaned from morning till night in all languages, “Drink. Drink. Water!” She came back to our block to get a little herbal tea, but as she was passing it through the bars of the window she was seen by the Aufseherin, who took her by the neck and threw her into Block 25. All my life I will remember Annette Épaux. Two days later I saw her on the truck which was taking the internees to the gas chamber. She had her arms around another French woman, old Line Porcher, and when the truck started moving she cried, “Think of my little boy, if you ever get back to France.” Then they started singing “The Marseillaise.”

In Block 25, in the courtyard, there were rats as big as cats running about and gnawing the corpses and even attacking the dying who had not enough strength left to chase them away.

Another cause of mortality and epidemics was the fact that we were given food in large red mess tins, which were merely rinsed in cold water after each meal. As all the women were ill and had not the strength during the night to go to the trench which was used as a lavatory, the access to which was beyond description, they used these containers for a purpose for which they were not meant. The next day the mess tins were collected and taken to a refuse heap. During the day another team would come and collect them, wash them in cold water, and put them in use again.

Another cause of death was the problem of shoes. In the snow and mud of Poland leather shoes were completely destroyed at the end of a week or two. Therefore our feet were frozen and covered with sores. We had to sleep with our muddy shoes on, lest they be stolen, and when the time came to get up for roll call cries of anguish could be heard: “My shoes have been stolen.” Then one had to wait until the whole block had been emptied to look under the bunks for odd shoes. Sometimes one found two shoes for the same foot, or one shoe and one sabot. One could go to roll call like that but it was an additional torture for work, because sores formed on our feet which quickly became infected for lack of care. Many of our companions went to the Revier for sores on their feet and legs and never came back.

M. DUBOST: What did they do to the internees who came to roll call without shoes?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: The Jewish internees who came without shoes were immediately taken to Block 25.

M. DUBOST: They were gassed then?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: They were gassed for any reason whatsoever. Their conditions were moreover absolutely appalling. Although we were crowded 800 in a block and could scarcely move, they were 1,500 to a block of similar dimensions, so that many of them could not sleep or even lie down during the whole night.

M. DUBOST: Can you talk about the Revier?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: To reach the Revier one had to go first to the roll call. Whatever the state was . . .

M. DUBOST: Would you please explain what the Revier was in the camp?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: The Revier was the blocks where the sick were put. This place could not be given the name of hospital, because it did not correspond in any way to our idea of a hospital.

To go there one had first to obtain authorization from the block chief who seldom gave it. When it was finally granted we were led in columns to the infirmary where, no matter what weather, whether it snowed or rained, even if one had a temperature of 40° (centigrade) one had to wait for several hours standing in a queue to be admitted. It frequently happened that patients died outside before the door of the infirmary, before they could get in. Moreover, lining up in front of the infirmary was dangerous because if the queue was too long the SS came along, picked up all the women who were waiting, and took them straight to Block Number 25.

M. DUBOST: That is to say, to the gas chamber?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: That is to say to the gas chamber. That is why very often the women preferred not to go to the Revier and they died at their work or at roll call. Every day, after the evening roll call in winter time, dead were picked up who had fallen into the ditches.

The only advantage of the Revier was that as one was in bed, one did not have to go to roll call; but one lay in appalling conditions, four in a bed of less than 1 meter in width, each suffering from a different disease, so that anyone who came for leg sores would catch typhus or dysentery from neighbors. The straw mattresses were dirty and they were changed only when absolutely rotten. The bedding was so full of lice that one could see them swarming like ants. One of my companions, Marguerite Corringer, told me that when she had typhus, she could not sleep all night because of the lice. She spent the night shaking her blanket over a piece of paper and emptying the lice into a receptacle by the bed, and this went on for hours.

There were practically no medicines. Consequently the patients were left in their beds without any attention, without hygiene, and unwashed. The dead lay in bed with the sick for several hours; and finally, when they were noticed, they were simply tipped out of the bed and taken outside the block. There the women porters would come and carry the dead away on small stretchers, with heads and legs dangling over the sides. From morning till night the carriers of the dead went from the Revier to the mortuary.

During the big epidemics, in the winters of 1943 and 1944, the stretchers were replaced by carts, as there were too many dead bodies. During those periods of epidemics there were from 200 to 350 dead daily.

M. DUBOST: How many people died at that time?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: During the big epidemics of typhus in the winters of 1943 and 1944, from 200 to 350; it depended on the days.

M. DUBOST: Was the Revier open to all the internees?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No. When we arrived Jewish women had not the right to be admitted. They were taken straight to the gas chamber.

M. DUBOST: Would you please tell us about the disinfection of the blocks?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: From time to time, owing to the filth which caused the lice and gave rise to so many epidemics, they disinfected the blocks with gas; but these disinfections were also the cause of many deaths because, while the blocks were being disinfected with gas, the prisoners were taken to the shower-baths. Their clothes were taken away from them to be steamed. The internees were left naked outside, waiting for their clothing to come back from the steaming, and then they were given back to them all wet. Even those who were sick, who could barely stand on their feet, were sent to the showers. It is quite obvious that a great many of them died in the course of these proceedings. Those who could not move were washed all in the same bath during the disinfection.

M. DUBOST: How were you fed?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: We had 200 grams of bread, three-quarters or half a liter—it varied—of soup made from swedes, and a few grams of margarine or a slice of sausage in the evening, this daily.

M. DUBOST: Regardless of the work that was exacted from the internees?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Regardless of the work that was exacted from the internee. Some who had to work in the factory of the “Union,” an ammunition factory where they made grenades and shells, received what was called a “Zulage,” that is, a supplementary ration, when the amount of their production was satisfactory. Those internees had to go to roll call morning and night as we did, and they were at work 12 hours in the factory. They came back to the camp after the day’s work, making the journey both ways on foot.

M. DUBOST: What was this “Union” factory?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: It was an ammunition factory. I do not know to what company it belonged. It was called, the “Union.”

M. DUBOST: Was it the only factory?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No, there was also, a large Buna factory, but as I did not work there I do not know what was made there. The internees who were taken to the Buna plant never came back to our camp.

M. DUBOST: Will you tell us about experiments, if you witnessed any?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: As to the experiments, I have seen in the Revier, because I was employed at the Revier, the queue of young Jewesses from Salonika who stood waiting in front of the X-ray room for sterilization. I also know that they performed castration operations in the men’s camp. Concerning the experiments performed on women I am well informed, because my friend, Doctor Hadé Hautval of Montbéliard, who has returned to France, worked for several months in that block nursing the patients; but she always refused to participate in those experiments. They sterilized women either by injections or by operation or with rays. I saw and knew several women who had been sterilized. There was a very high mortality rate among those operated upon. Fourteen Jewesses from France who refused to be sterilized were sent to a Strafarbeit kommando, that is, hard labor.

M. DUBOST: Did they come back from those kommandos?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Very seldom. Quite exceptionally.

M. DUBOST: What was the aim of the SS?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Sterilization—they did not conceal it. They said that they were trying to find the best method for sterilizing so as to replace the native population in the occupied countries by Germans after one generation, once they had made use of the inhabitants as slaves to work for them.

M. DUBOST: In the Revier did you see any pregnant women?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes. The Jewish women, when they arrived in the first months of pregnancy, were subjected to abortion. When their pregnancy was near the end, after confinement, the babies were drowned in a bucket of water. I know that because I worked in the Revier and the woman who was in charge of that task was a German midwife, who was imprisoned for having performed illegal operations. After a while another doctor arrived and for 2 months they did not kill the Jewish babies. But one day an order came from Berlin saying that again they had to be done away with. Then the mothers and their babies were called to the infirmary. They were put in a lorry and taken away to the gas chamber.

M. DUBOST: Why did you say that an order came from Berlin?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Because I knew the internees who worked in the secretariat of the SS and in particular a Slovakian woman by the name of Hertha Roth, who is now working with UNRRA at Bratislava.

M. DUBOST: Is it she who told you that?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, and moreover, I also knew the men who worked in the gas kommando.

M. DUBOST: You have told us about the Jewish mothers. Were there other mothers in your camp?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, in principle, non-Jewish women were allowed to have their babies, and the babies were not taken away from them; but conditions in the camp being so horrible, the babies rarely lived for more than 4 or 5 weeks.

There was one block where the Polish and Russian mothers were. One day the Russian mothers, having been accused of making too much noise, had to stand for roll call all day long in front of the block, naked, with their babies in their arms.

M. DUBOST: What was the disciplinary system of the camp? Who kept order and discipline? What were the punishments?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Generally speaking, the SS economized on many of their own personnel by employing internees for watching the camp; SS only supervised. These internees were chosen from German common-law criminals and prostitutes, and sometimes those of other nationalities, but most of them were Germans. By corruption, accusation, and terror they succeeded in making veritable human beasts of them; and the internees had as much cause to complain about them as about the SS themselves. They beat us just as hard as the SS; and as to the SS, the men behaved like the women and the women were as savage as the men. There was no difference.

The system employed by the SS of degrading human beings to the utmost by terrorizing them and causing them through fear to commit acts which made them ashamed of themselves, resulted in their being no longer human. This was what they wanted. It took a great deal of courage to resist this atmosphere of terror and corruption.

M. DUBOST: Who meted out punishments?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: The SS leaders, men and women.

M. DUBOST: What was the nature of the punishments?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Bodily ill-treatment in particular. One of the most usual punishments, was 50 blows with a stick on the loins. They were administered with a machine which I saw, a swinging apparatus manipulated by an SS. There were also endless roll calls day and night, or gymnastics; flat on the belly, get up, lie down, up, down, for hours, and anyone who fell was beaten unmercifully and taken to Block 25.

M. DUBOST: How did the SS behave towards the women? And the women SS?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At Auschwitz there was a brothel for the SS and also one for the male internees of the staff, who were called “Kapo.” Moreover, when the SS needed servants, they came accompanied by the Oberaufseherin, that is, the woman commandant of the camp, to make a choice during the process of disinfection. They would point to a young girl, whom the Oberaufseherin would take out of the ranks. They would look her over and make jokes about her physique; and if she was pretty and they liked her, they would hire her as a maid with the consent of the Oberaufseherin, who would tell her that she was to obey them absolutely no matter what they asked of her.

M. DUBOST: Why did they go during disinfection?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Because during the disinfection the women were naked.

M. DUBOST: This system of demoralization and corruption—was it exceptional?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No, the system was identical in all the camps where I have been, and I have spoken to internees coming from camps where I myself had never been; it was the same thing everywhere. The system was identical no matter what the camp was. There were, however, certain variations. I believe that Auschwitz was one of the harshest; but later I went to Ravensbrück, where there also was a house of ill fame and where recruiting was also carried out among the internees.

M. DUBOST: Then, according to you, everything was done to degrade those women in their own sight?


M. DUBOST: What do you know about the convoy of Jews which arrived from Romainville about the same time as yourself?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: When we left Romainville the Jewesses who were there at the same time as ourselves were left behind. They were sent to Drancy and subsequently arrived at Auschwitz, where we found them again 3 weeks later, 3 weeks after our arrival. Of the original 1,200 only 125 actually came to the camp; the others were immediately sent to the gas chambers. Of these 125 not one was left alive at the end of 1 month.

The transports operated as follows:

When we first arrived, whenever a convoy of Jews came, a selection was made; first the old men and women, then the mothers and the children were put into trucks together with the sick or those whose constitution appeared to be delicate. They took in only the young women and girls as well as the young men who were sent to the men’s camp.

Generally speaking, of a convoy of about 1,000 to 1,500, seldom more than 250—and this figure really was the maximum—actually reached the camp. The rest were immediately sent to the gas chamber.

At this selection also, they picked out women in good health between the ages of 20 and 30, who were sent to the experimental block; and young girls and slightly older women, or those who had not been selected for that purpose, were sent to the camp where, like ourselves, they were tattooed and shaved.

There was also, in the spring of 1944, a special block for twins. It was during the time when large convoys of Hungarian Jews—about 700,000—arrived. Dr. Mengele, who was carrying out the experiments, kept back from each convoy twin children and twins in general, regardless of their age, so long as both were present. So we had both babies and adults on the floor at that block. Apart from blood tests and measuring I do not know what was done to them.

M. DUBOST: Were you an eye witness of the selections on the arrival of the convoys?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, because when we worked at the sewing block in 1944, the block where we lived directly faced the stopping place of the trains. The system had been improved. Instead of making the selection at the place where they arrived, a side line now took the train practically right up to the gas chamber; and the stopping place, about 100 meters from the gas chamber, was right opposite our block though, of course, separated from us by two rows of barbed wire. Consequently, we saw the unsealing of the cars and the soldiers letting men, women, and children out of them. We then witnessed heart-rending scenes; old couples forced to part from each other, mothers made to abandon their young daughters, since the latter were sent to the camp, whereas mothers and children were sent to the gas chambers. All these people were unaware of the fate awaiting them. They were merely upset at being separated, but they did not know that they were going to their death. To render their welcome more pleasant at this time—June-July 1944—an orchestra composed of internees, all young and pretty girls dressed in little white blouses and navy blue skirts, played during the selection, at the arrival of the trains, gay tunes such as “The Merry Widow,” the “Barcarolle” from “The Tales of Hoffman,” and so forth. They were then informed that this was a labor camp and since they were not brought into the camp they saw only the small platform surrounded by flowering plants. Naturally, they could not realize what was in store for them. Those selected for the gas chamber, that is, the old people, mothers, and children, were escorted to a red-brick building.

M. DUBOST: These were not given an identification number?


M. DUBOST: They were not tattooed?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No. They were not even counted.

M. DUBOST: You were tattooed?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, look. [The witness showed her arm.] They were taken to a red brick building, which bore the letters “Baden,” that is to say “Baths.” There, to begin with, they were made to undress and given a towel before they went into the so-called shower room. Later on, at the time of the large convoys from Hungary, they had no more time left to play-actor to pretend; they were brutally undressed, and I know these details as I knew a little Jewess from France who lived with her family at the “République” district.

M. DUBOST: In Paris?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: In Paris. She was called “little Marie” and she was the only one, the sole survivor of a family of nine. Her mother and her seven brothers and sisters had been gassed on arrival. When I met her she was employed to undress the babies before they were taken into the gas chamber. Once the people were undressed they took them into a room which was somewhat like a shower room, and gas capsules were thrown through an opening in the ceiling. An SS man would watch the effect produced through a porthole. At the end of 5 or 7 minutes, when the gas had completed its work, he gave the signal to open the doors; and men with gas masks—they too were internees—went into the room and removed the corpses. They told us that the internees must have suffered before dying, because they were closely clinging to one another and it was very difficult to separate them.

After that a special squad would come to pull out gold teeth and dentures; and again, when the bodies had been reduced to ashes, they would sift them in an attempt to recover the gold.

At Auschwitz there were eight crematories but, as from 1944, these proved insufficient. The SS had large pits dug by the internees, where they put branches, sprinkled with gasoline, which they set on fire. Then they threw the corpses into the pits. From our block we could see after about three-quarters of an hour or an hour after the arrival of a convoy, large flames coming from the crematory, and the sky was lighted up by the burning pits.

One night we were awakened by terrifying cries. And we discovered, on the following day, from the men working in the Sonderkommando—the “Gas Kommando”—that on the preceding day, the gas supply having run out, they had thrown the children into the furnaces alive.

M. DUBOST: Can you tell us about the selections that were made at the beginning of winter?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Every year, towards the end of the autumn, they proceeded to make selections on a large scale in the Revier. The system appeared to work as follows—I say this because I noticed the fact for myself during the time I spent in Auschwitz. Others, who had stayed there even longer than I, had observed the same phenomenon.

In the spring, all through Europe, they rounded up men and women whom they sent to Auschwitz. They kept only those who were strong enough to work all through the summer. During that period naturally some died every day; but the strongest, those who had succeeded in holding out for 6 months, were so exhausted that they too had to go to the Revier. It was then in autumn that the large scale selections were made, so as not to feed too many useless mouths during the winter. All the women who were too thin were sent to the gas chamber, as well as those who had long, drawn-out illnesses; but the Jewesses were gassed for practically no reason at all. For instance, they gassed everybody in the “scabies block,” whereas everybody knows that with a little care, scabies can be cured in 3 days. I remember the typhus convalescent block from which 450 out of 500 patients were sent to the gas chamber.

During Christmas 1944—no, 1943, Christmas 1943—when we were in quarantine, we saw, since we lived opposite Block 25, women brought to Block 25 stripped naked. Uncovered trucks were then driven up and on them the naked women were piled, as many as the trucks could hold. Each time a truck started, the infamous Hessler—he was one of the criminals condemned to death at the Lüneburg trials—ran after the truck and with his bludgeon repeatedly struck the naked women going to their death. They knew they were going to the gas chamber and tried to escape. They were massacred. They attempted to jump from the truck and we, from our own block, watched the trucks pass by and heard the grievous wailing of all those women who knew they were going to be gassed. Many of them could very well have lived on, since they were suffering only from scabies and were, perhaps, a little too undernourished.

M. DUBOST: You told us, Madame, a little while ago, that the deportees, from the moment they stepped off the train and without even being counted, were sent to the gas chamber. What happened to their clothing and their luggage?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: The non-Jews had to carry their own luggage and were billeted in separate blocks, but when the Jews arrived they had to leave all their belongings on the platform. They were stripped before entering the gas chamber and all their clothes, as well as all their belongings, were taken over to large barracks and there sorted out by a Kommando named “Canada.” Then everything was shipped to Germany: jewelry, fur coats, et cetera.

Since the Jewesses were sent to Auschwitz with their entire families and since they had been told that this was a sort of ghetto and were advised to bring all their goods and chattels along, they consequently brought considerable riches with them. As for the Jewesses from Salonika, I remember that on their arrival they were given picture postcards, bearing the post office address of “Waldsee,” a place which did not exist; and a printed text to be sent to their families, stating, “We are doing very well here; we have work and we are well treated. We await your arrival.” I myself saw the cards in question; and the Schreiberinnen, that is, the secretaries of the block, were instructed to distribute them among the internees in order to post them to their families. I know that whole families arrived as a result of these postcards.

I myself know that the following affair occurred in Greece. I do not know whether it happened in any other country, but in any case it did occur in Greece (as well as in Czechoslovakia) that whole families went to the recruiting office at Salonika in order to rejoin their families. I remember one professor of literature from Salonika, who, to his horror, saw his own father arrive.

M. DUBOST: Will you tell us about the Gypsy camps?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Right next to our camp, on the other side of the barbed wires, 3 meters apart, there were two camps; one for Gypsies, which towards August 1944 was completely gassed. These Gypsies came from all parts of Europe including Germany. Likewise on the other side there was the so-called family camp. These were Jews from the Ghetto of Theresienstadt, who had been brought there and, unlike ourselves, they had been neither tattooed nor shaved. Their clothes were not taken from them and they did not have to work. They lived like this for 6 months and at the end of 6 months the entire family camp, amounting to some 6,000 or 7,000 Jews, was gassed. A few days later other large convoys again arrived from Theresienstadt with their families and 6 months later they too were gassed, like the first inmates of the family camp.

M. DUBOST: Would you, Madame, please give us some details as to what you saw when you were about to leave the camp, and under what circumstances you left it?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: We were in quarantine before leaving Auschwitz.

M. DUBOST: When was that?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: We were in quarantine for 10 months, from the 15th of July 1943, yes, until May 1944. And after that we returned to the camp for 2 months. Then we went to Ravensbrück.

M. DUBOST: These were all French women from your convoy, who had survived?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, all the surviving French women of our convoy. We had heard from Jewesses who had arrived from France, in July 1944, that an intensive campaign had been carried out by the British Broadcasting Corporation in London, in connection with our convoy, mentioning Maï Politzer, Danielle Casanova, Hélène Solomon-Langevin, and myself. As a result of this broadcast we knew that orders had been issued, from Berlin to the effect that French women should be transported under better conditions.

So we were placed in quarantine. This was a block situated opposite the camp and outside the barbed wire. I must say that it is to this quarantine that the 49 survivors owed their lives, because at the end of 4 months there were only 52 of us. Therefore it is certain that we could not have survived 18 months of this regime had we not had these 10 months of quarantine.

This quarantine was imposed because exanthematic typhus was raging at Auschwitz. One could leave the camp only to be freed or to be transferred to another camp or to be summoned before the court after spending 15 days in quarantine, these 15 days being the incubation period for exanthematic typhus. Consequently, as soon as the papers arrived announcing that the internee would probably be liberated, she was placed in quarantine until the order for her liberation was signed. This sometimes took several months and 15 days was the minimum.

Now a policy existed for freeing German women common-law criminals and asocial elements in order to employ them as workers in the German factories. It is therefore impossible to imagine that the whole of Germany was unaware of the existence of the concentration camps and of what was going on there, since these women had been released from the camps and it is difficult to believe that they never mentioned them. Besides, in the factories where the former internees were employed, the Vorarbeiterinnen (the forewomen) were German civilians in contact with the internees and able to speak to them. The forewomen from Auschwitz, who subsequently came to Siemens at Ravensbrück as Aufseherinnen, had been former workers at Siemens in Berlin. They met forewomen they had known in Berlin, and, in our presence, they told them what they had seen at Auschwitz. It is therefore incredible that this was not known in Germany.

We could not believe our eyes when we left Auschwitz and our hearts were sore when we saw the small group of 49 women; all that was left of the 230 who had entered the camp 18 months earlier. But to us it seemed that we were leaving hell itself, and for the first time hopes of survival, of seeing the world again, were vouchsafed to us.

M. DUBOST: Where were you sent then, Madame?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: On leaving Auschwitz we were sent to Ravensbrück. There we were escorted to the “NN” block—meaning “Nacht und Nebel”, that is, “The Secret Block.” With us in that block were Polish women with the identification number “7,000.” Some were called “rabbits” because they had been used as experimental guinea pigs. They selected from the convoys girls with very straight legs who were in very good health, and they submitted them to various operations. Some of the girls had parts of the bone removed from their legs, others received injections; but what was injected, I do not know. The mortality rate was very high among the women operated upon. So when they came to fetch the others to operate on them they refused to go to the Revier. They were forcibly dragged to the dark cells where the professor, who had arrived from Berlin, operated in his uniform, without taking any aseptic precautions, without wearing a surgical gown, and without washing his hands. There are some survivors among these “rabbits.” They still endure much suffering. They suffer periodically from suppurations; and since nobody knows to what treatment they had been subjected, it is extremely difficult to cure them.

M. DUBOST: Were these internees tattooed on their arrival?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No. People were not tattooed at Ravensbrück; but, on the other hand, we had to go up for a gynecological examination, and since no precautions were ever taken and the same instruments were frequently used in all cases, infections spread, partly because common-law prisoners and political internees were all herded together.

In Block 32 where we were billeted there were also some Russian women prisoners of war, who had refused to work voluntarily in the ammunition factories. For that reason they had been sent to Ravensbrück. Since they persisted in their refusal, they were subjected to every form of petty indignity. They were, for instance, forced to stand in front of the block a whole day long without any food. Some of them were sent in convoys to Barth. Others were employed to carry lavatory receptacles in the camp. The Strafblock (penitentiary block) and the Bunker also housed internees who had refused to work in the war factories.

M. DUBOST: Are you now speaking about the prisons in the camp?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: About the prisons in the camp. As a matter of fact I have visited the camp prison. It was a civilian prison, a real one.

M. DUBOST: How many French were there in that camp?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: From 8 to 10 thousand.

M. DUBOST: How many women all told?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At the time of liberation the identification numbers amounted to 105,000 and possibly more.

There were also executions in the camps. The numbers were called at roll call in the morning, and the victims then left for the Kommandantur and were never seen again. A few days later the clothes were sent down to the Effektenkammer, where the clothes of the internees were kept. After a certain time their cards would vanish from the filing cabinets in the camp.

M. DUBOST: The system of detention was the same as at Auschwitz?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No. In Auschwitz, obviously, extermination was the sole aim and object. Nobody was at all interested in the output. We were beaten for no reason whatsoever. It was sufficient to stand from morning till evening but whether we carried one brick or 10 was of no importance at all. We were quite aware that the human element was employed as slave labor in order to kill us, that this was the ultimate purpose, whereas at Ravensbrück the output was of great importance. It was a clearing camp. When the convoys arrived at Ravensbrück, they were rapidly dispatched either to the munition or to the powder factories, either to work at the airfields or, latterly, to dig trenches.

The following procedure was adopted for going to the factories: The manufacturers or their foremen or else their representatives were coming themselves to choose their workers, accompanied by SS men; the effect was that of a slave market. They felt the muscles, examined the faces to see if the person looked healthy, and then made their choice. Finally, they made them walk naked past the doctor and he eventually decided if a woman was fit or not to leave for work in the factories. Latterly, the doctor’s visit became a mere formality as they ended by employing anybody who came along. The work was exhausting, principally because of lack of food and sleep, since in addition to 12 solid hours of work one had to attend roll call in the morning and in the evening. In Ravensbrück there was the Siemens factory, where telephone equipment was manufactured as well as wireless sets for aircraft. Then there were workshops in the camp for camouflage material and uniforms and for various utensils used by soldiers. One of these I know best . . .

THE PRESIDENT: I think we had better break off now for 10 minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

M. DUBOST: Madame, did you see any SS chiefs and members of the Wehrmacht visit the camps of Ravensbrück and Auschwitz when you were there?


M. DUBOST: Do you know if any German Government officials came to visit these camps?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I know it only as far as Himmler is concerned. Apart from Himmler I do not know.

M. DUBOST: Who were the guards in these camps?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At the beginning there were the SS guards, exclusively.

M. DUBOST: Will you please speak more slowly so that the interpreters can follow you?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At the beginning there were only SS men, but from the spring of 1944 the young SS men in many companies were replaced by older men of the Wehrmacht both at Auschwitz and also at Ravensbrück. We were guarded by soldiers of the Wehrmacht as from 1944.

M. DUBOST: You can therefore testify that on the order of the German General Staff the German Army was implicated in the atrocities which you have described?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Obviously, since we were guarded by the Wehrmacht as well, and this could not have occurred without orders.

M. DUBOST: Your testimony is final and involves both the SS and the Army.


M. DUBOST: Will you tell us about the arrival at Ravensbrück in the winter of 1944, of Hungarian Jewesses who had been arrested en masse? You were in Ravensbrück—this is a fact about which you can testify?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Yes, of course I was there. There was no longer any room left in the blocks, and the prisoners already slept four in a bed, so there was raised, in the middle of the camp, a large tent. Straw was spread in the tent, and the Hungarian women were brought to this tent. Their condition was frightful. There were a great many cases of frozen feet because they had been evacuated from Budapest and had walked a good part of the way in the snow. A great many of them had died en route. Those who arrived at Auschwitz were led to this tent and there an enormous number of them died. Every day a squad came to remove the corpses in the tent. One day, on returning to my block, which was next to this tent, during the cleaning up . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Madame, are you speaking of Ravensbrück or of Auschwitz?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: [In English.] Now I am speaking of Ravensbrück. [In French.] It was in the winter of 1944, about November or December, I believe, though I cannot say for certain which month it was. It is so difficult to give a precise date in the concentration camps since one day of torture is followed by another day of similar torment and the prevailing monotony makes it very hard to keep track of time.

One day therefore, as I was saying, I passed the tent while it was being cleaned, and I saw a pile of smoking manure in front of it. I suddenly realized that this manure was human excrement since the unfortunate women no longer had the strength to drag themselves to the lavatories. They were therefore rotting in this filth.

M. DUBOST: What were the conditions in the workshops where the jackets were manufactured?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At the workshops where the uniforms were manufactured. . .

M. DUBOST: Was it the camp workshop?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: It was the camp workshop, known as “Schneiderei I.” Two hundred jackets or pairs of trousers were manufactured per day. There were two shifts; a day and a night shift, both working 12 hours. The night shift, when starting work at midnight, after the standard amount of work had been reached—but only then—received a thin slice of bread. Later on this practice was discontinued. Work was carried on at a furious pace; the internees could not even take time off to go the lavatories. Both day and night they were terribly beaten, both by the SS women and men, if a needle broke owing to the poor quality of the thread, if the machine stopped, or if these “ladies” and “gentlemen” did not like their looks. Towards the end of the night one could see that the workers were so exhausted, that every movement was an effort to them. Beads of sweat stood out on their foreheads. They could not see clearly. When the standard amount of work was not reached the foreman, Binder, rushed up and beat up, with all his might, one woman after another all along the line, with the result that the last in the row waited their turn petrified with terror. If one wished to go to the Revier one had to receive the authorization of the SS, who granted it very rarely; and even then, if the doctor did give a woman a permit authorizing her to stay away from work for a few days, the SS guards would often come round and fetch her out of bed in order to put her back at her machine. The atmosphere was frightful since, by reason of the “black-out,” one could not open the windows at night. Six hundred women therefore worked for 12 hours without any ventilation. All those who worked at the Schneiderei became like living skeletons after a few months. They began to cough, their eyesight failed, they developed a nervous twitching of the face for fear of beatings to come.

I knew well the conditions of this workshop since my little friend, Marie Rubiano, a little French girl who had just passed 3 years in the prison of Kottbus, was sent, on her arrival at Ravensbrück, to the Schneiderei; and every evening she would tell me about her martyrdom. One day, when she was quite exhausted, she obtained permission to go to the Revier; and as on that day the German Schwester (nursing sister), Erica, was less evil-tempered than usual, she was X-rayed. Both lungs were severely infected and she was sent to the horrible Block 10, the block of the consumptives. This block was particularly terrifying, since tubercular patients were not considered as “recuperable material”; they received no treatment; and because of shortage of staff, they were not even washed. We might even say that there were no medical supplies at all.

Little Marie was placed in the ward housing patients with bacillary infections, in other words, such patients as were considered incurable. She spent some weeks there and had no courage left to put up a fight for her life. I must say that the atmosphere of this room was particularly depressing. There were many patients—several to one bed in three-tier bunks—in an overheated atmosphere, lying between internees of various nationalities, so that they could not even speak to one another. Then, too, the silence in this antechamber of death was only broken by the yells of the German asocial personnel on duty and, from time to time, by the muffled sobs of a little French girl thinking of her mother and of her country which she would never see again.

And yet, Marie Rubiano did not die fast enough to please the SS. So one day Dr. Winkelmann, selection specialist at Ravensbrück, entered her name in the black-list and on 9 February 1945, together with 72 other consumptive women, 6 of whom were French, she was shoved on the truck for the gas chamber.

During this period, in all the Revieren, selections were made and all patients considered unfit for work were sent to the gas chamber. The Ravensbrück gas chamber was situated just behind the wall of the camp, next to the crematory. When the trucks came to fetch the patients we heard the sound of the motor across the camp, and the noise ceased right by the crematory whose chimney rose above the high wall of the camp.

At the time of the liberation I returned to these places. I visited the gas chamber which was a hermetically sealed building made of boards, and inside it one could still smell the disagreeable odor of gas. I know that at Auschwitz the gases were the same as those which were used against the lice, and the only traces they left were small, pale green crystals which were swept out when the windows were opened. I know these details, since the men employed in delousing the blocks were in contact with the personnel who gassed the victims and they told them that one and the same gas was used in both cases.

M. DUBOST: Was this the only way used to exterminate the internees in Ravensbrück?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: In Block 10 they also experimented with a white powder. One day the German Schwester, Martha, arrived in the block and distributed a powder to some 20 patients. The patients subsequently fell into a deep sleep. Four or five of them were seized with violent fits of vomiting and this saved their lives. During the night the snores gradually ceased and the patients died. This I know because I went every day to visit the French women in the block. Two of the nurses were French and Dr. Louise Le Porz, a native of Bordeaux who came back, can likewise testify to this fact.

M. DUBOST: Was this a frequent occurrence?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: During my stay this was the only case of its kind within the Revier but the system was also applied at the Jugendlager, so called because it was a former reform school for German juvenile delinquents.

Towards the beginning of 1945 Dr. Winkelmann, no longer satisfied with selections in the Revier, proceeded to make his selections in the blocks. All the prisoners had to answer roll call in their bare feet and expose their breasts and legs. All those who were sick, too old, too thin, or whose legs were swollen with oedema, were set aside and then sent to this Jugendlager, a quarter of an hour away from the camp at Ravensbrück. I visited it at the liberation.

In the blocks an order had been circulated to the effect that the old women and the patients who could no longer work should apply in writing for admission to the Jugendlager, where they would be far better off, where they would not have to work, and where there would be no roll call. We learned about this later through some of the people who worked at the Jugendlager—the chief of the camp was an Austrian woman, Betty Wenz, whom I knew from Auschwitz—and from a few of the survivors, one of whom is Irène Ottelard, a French woman living in Drancy, 17 Rue de la Liberté, who was repatriated at the same time as myself and whom I had nursed after the liberation. Through her we discovered the details about the Jugendlager.

M. DUBOST: Can you tell us, Madame, if you can answer this question? Were the SS doctors who made the selection acting on their own accord or were they merely obeying orders?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: They were acting on orders received, since one of them, Dr. Lukas, refused to participate in the selections and was withdrawn from the camp, and Dr. Winkelmann was sent from Berlin to replace him.

M. DUBOST: Did you personally witness these facts?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: It was he himself who told the Chief of the Block 10 and Dr. Louise Le Porz, when he left.

M. DUBOST: Could you give us some information about the conditions in which the men at the neighboring camp at Ravensbrück lived on the day after the liberation, when you were able to see them?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I think it advisable to speak of the Jugendlager first since, chronologically speaking, it comes first.

M. DUBOST: If you wish it.

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: At the Jugendlager the old women and the patients who had left our camp were placed in blocks which had no water and no conveniences; they lay on straw mattresses on the ground, so closely pressed together that one was quite unable to pass between them. At night one could not sleep because of the continuous coming and going, and the internees trod on each other when passing. The straw mattresses were rotten and teemed with lice; those who were able to stand remained for hours on end for roll call until they collapsed. In February their coats were taken away but they continued to stay out for roll call and mortality was considerably increased.

By way of nourishment they received only one thin slice of bread and half a quart of swede soup, and all the drink they got in 24 hours was half a quart of herbal tea. They had no water to drink, none to wash in, and none to wash their mess tins.

In the Jugendlager there was also a Revier for those who could no longer stand. Periodically, during the roll calls, the Aufseherin would choose some internees, who would be undressed and left in nothing but their chemises. Their coats were then returned to them. They were hoisted on to a truck and were driven off to the gas chamber. A few days later the coats were returned to the Kammer (the clothing warehouse), and the labels were marked “Mittwerda.” The internees working on the labels told us that the word “Mittwerda” did not exist and that it was a special term for the gases.

At the Revier white powder was periodically distributed, and the sick were dying as in Block 10, which I mentioned a short time ago. They made . . .

THE PRESIDENT: The details of the witness’ evidence as to Ravensbrück seem to be very much like, if not the same, as at Auschwitz. Would it not be possible now, after hearing this amount of detail, to deal with the matter more generally, unless there is some substantial difference between Ravensbrück and Auschwitz.

M. DUBOST: I think there is a difference which the witness has pointed out to us, namely, that in Auschwitz the prisoners were purely and simply exterminated. It was merely an extermination camp, whereas at Ravensbrück they were interned in order to work, and were weakened by work until they died of it.

THE PRESIDENT: If there are any other distinctions between the two, no doubt you will lead the witness, I mean ask the witness about those other distinctions.

M. DUBOST: I shall not fail to do so.

[To the witness.] Could you tell the Tribunal in what condition the men’s camp was found at the time of the liberation and how many survivors remained?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: When the Germans went away they left 2,000 sick women and a certain number of volunteers, myself included, to take care of them. They left us without water and without light. Fortunately the Russians arrived on the following day. We therefore were able to go to the men’s camp and there we found a perfectly indescribable sight. They had been for 5 days without water. There were 800 serious cases, and three doctors and seven nurses, who were unable to separate the dead from the sick. Thanks to the Red Army, we were able to take these sick persons over into clean blocks and to give them food and care; but unfortunately I can give the figures only for the French. There were 400 of them when we came to the camp and only 150 were able to return to France; for the others it was too late, in spite of all our care.

M. DUBOST: Were you present at any of the executions and do you know how they were carried out in the camp?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I was not present at the executions. I only know that the last one took place on 22 April, 8 days before the arrival of the Red army. The prisoners were sent, as I said, to the Kommandantur; then their clothes were returned and their cards were removed from the files.

M. DUBOST: Was the situation in this camp of an exceptional nature or do you consider it was part of a system?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: It is difficult to convey an exact idea of the concentration camps to anybody, unless one has been in the camp oneself, since one can only quote examples of horror; but it is quite impossible to convey any impression of that deadly monotony. If asked what was the worst of all, it is impossible to answer, since everything was atrocious. It is atrocious to die of hunger, to die of thirst, to be ill, to see all one’s companions dying around one and being unable to help them. It is atrocious to think of one’s children, of one’s country which one will never see again, and there were times when we asked whether our life was not a living nightmare, so unreal did this life appear in all its horror.

For months, for years we had one wish only: The wish that some of us would escape alive, in order to tell the world what the Nazi convict prisons were like everywhere, at Auschwitz as at Ravensbrück. And the comrades from the other camps told the same tale; there was the systematic and implacable urge to use human beings as slaves and to kill them when they could work no more.

M. DUBOST: Have you anything further to relate?


M. DUBOST: I thank you. If the Tribunal wishes to question the witness, I have finished.

GEN. RUDENKO: I have no questions to ask.

DR. HANNS MARX (Acting for Dr. Babel, Counsel for the SS): Attorney Babel was prevented from coming this morning as he has to attend a conference with General Mitchell.

My Lords, I should like to take the liberty of asking the witness a few questions to elucidate the matter.

[Turning to the witness.] Madame Couturier, you declared that you were arrested by the French police?


DR. MARX: For what reason were you arrested?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Resistance. I belonged to a resistance movement.

DR. MARX: Another question: Which position did you occupy? I mean what kind of post did you ever hold? Have you ever held a post?


DR. MARX: For example as a teacher?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Before the war? I don’t quite see what this question has to do with the matter. I was a journalist.

DR. MARX: Yes. The fact of the matter is that you, in your statement, showed great skill in style and expression; and I should like to know whether you held any position such, for example, as teacher or lecturer.

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: No. I was a newspaper photographer.

DR. MARX: How do you explain that you yourself came through these experiences so well and are now in such a good state of health?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: First of all, I was liberated a year ago; and in a year one has time to recover. Secondly, I was 10 months in quarantine for typhus and I had the great luck not to die of exanthematic typhus, although I had it and was ill for 3½ months. Also, in the last months at Ravensbrück, as I knew German, I worked on the Revier roll call, which explains why I did not have to work quite so hard or to suffer from the inclemencies of the weather. On the other hand, out of 230 of us only 49 from my convoy returned alive; and we were only 52 at the end of 4 months. I had the great fortune to return.

DR. MARX: Yes. Does your statement contain what you yourself observed or is it concerned with information from other sources as well?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: Whenever such was the case I mentioned it in my declaration. I have never quoted anything which has not previously been verified at the sources and by several persons, but the major part of my evidence is based on personal experience.

DR. MARX: How can you explain your very precise statistical knowledge, for instance, that 700,000 Jews arrived from Hungary?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I told you that I have worked in the offices; and where Auschwitz was concerned, I was a friend of the secretary (the Oberaufseherin), whose name and address I gave to the Tribunal.

DR. MARX: It has been stated that only 350,000 Jews came from Hungary, according to the testimony of the Chief of the Gestapo, Eichmann.

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I am not going to argue with the Gestapo. I have good reasons to know that what the Gestapo states is not always true.

DR. MARX: How were you treated personally? Were you treated well?


DR. MARX: Like the others? You said before that the German people must have known of the happenings in Auschwitz. What are your grounds for this statement?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I have already told you: To begin with there was the fact that, when we left, the Lorraine soldiers of the Wehrmacht who were taking us to Auschwitz said to us, “If you knew where you were going, you would not be in such a hurry to get there.” Then there was the fact that the German women who came out of quarantine to go to work in German factories knew of these events, and they all said that they would speak about them outside.

Further, the fact that in all the factories where the Häftlinge (the internees) worked they were in contact with the German civilians, as also were the Aufseherinnen, who were in touch with their friends and families and often told them what they had seen.

DR. MARX: One more question. Up to 1942 you were able to observe the behavior of the German soldiers in Paris. Did not these German soldiers behave well throughout and did they not pay for what they took?

MME. VAILLANT-COUTURIER: I have not the least idea whether they paid or not for what they requisitioned. As for their good behavior, too many of my friends were shot or massacred for me not to differ with you.

DR. MARX: I have no further question to put to this witness.

[Dr. Marx started to leave the lectern and then returned.]

THE PRESIDENT: If you have no further question there is nothing more to be said. [Laughter.] There is too much laughter in the court; I have already spoken about that.

[To Dr. Marx.] I thought you had said you had no further question.

DR. MARX: Yes. Please excuse me. I only want to make a proviso for Attorney Babel that he might cross-examine the witness himself at a later date, if that is possible.

THE PRESIDENT: Babel, did you say?

DR. MARX: Yes.

THE PRESIDENT: I beg your pardon; yes, certainly. When will Dr. Babel be back in his place?

DR. MARX: I presume that he will be back in the afternoon. He is in the building. However, he must first read the minutes.

THE PRESIDENT: We will consider the question. If Dr. Babel is here this afternoon we will consider the matter, if Dr. Babel makes a further application.

Does any other of the defendants’ counsel wish to ask any questions of the witness?

[There was no response.]

M. Dubost, have you any questions you wish to ask on reexamination?

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions to ask.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness may retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal will kindly allow it, we shall now hear another witness, M. Veith.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you calling this witness on the treatment of prisoners in concentration camps?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Mr. President, and also because this witness can give us particulars of the ill-treatment to which certain prisoners of war had been exposed in the camps of internees. This is no longer a question of concentration camps and of ill-treatment inflicted upon civilians in those camps, but of soldiers who had been brought to the concentration camps and subjected to the same cruelty as the civilian prisoners.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, you won’t lose sight of the fact that there has been practically no cross-examination of the witnesses you have already called about the treatment in concentration camps? The Tribunal, I think, feels that you could deal with the treatment in concentration camps somewhat more generally than the last witness. Do you hear what I say?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal thinks that you could deal with the question of treatment in concentration camps rather more generally now, since we have heard the details from the witnesses whom you have already called.

[The witness, Veith, took the stand.]

M. DUBOST: Is the Tribunal willing to hear this witness?


[To the witness.] What is your name?

M. JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC VEITH (Witness): Jean-Frédéric Veith.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath: I swear that I will speak without hate or fear, that I will tell the truth, all the truth, nothing but the truth.

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: Raise your right hand and say, “I swear.”

VEITH: I swear it.

THE PRESIDENT: Would you like to sit down and spell your name and surname?

M. DUBOST: Will you please spell your name and surname?

VEITH: J-e-a-n F-r-é-d-é-r-i-c V-e-i-t-h. I was born on 28 April 1903 in Moscow.

M. DUBOST: You are of French nationality?

VEITH: I am of French nationality, born of French parents.

M. DUBOST: In which camp were you interned?

VEITH: At Mauthausen; from 22 April 1943 until 22 April 1945.

M. DUBOST: You knew about the work carried out in the factories supplying material to the Luftwaffe. Who controlled these factories?

VEITH: I was in the Arbeitseinsatz at Mauthausen from June 1943, and I was therefore well acquainted with all questions dealing with the work.

M. DUBOST: Who controlled the factories working for the Luftwaffe?

VEITH: There were outside camps at Mauthausen where workers were employed by Heinkel, Messerschmidt, Alfa-Vienne, and the Saurer-Werke, and there was, moreover, the construction work on the Leibl Pass tunnel by the Alpine Montan.

M. DUBOST: Who controlled this work, supervisors or engineers?

VEITH: There was only SS supervision. The work itself was controlled by the engineers and the firms themselves.

M. DUBOST: Did these engineers belong to the Luftwaffe?

VEITH: On certain days I saw Luftwaffe officers who came to visit the Messerschmidt workshops in the quarry.

M. DUBOST: Were they able to see for themselves the conditions under which the prisoners lived?

VEITH: Yes, certainly.

M. DUBOST: Did you see any high-ranking Nazi officials visiting the camp?

VEITH: I saw a great many high-ranking officials, among them Himmler, Kaltenbrunner, Pohl, Maurer, the Chief of the Labor Office, Amt D II, of the Reich, and many other visitors whose names I do not know.

M. DUBOST: Who told you that Kaltenbrunner had come?

VEITH: Well, our offices faced the parade ground overlooking the Kommandantur; we therefore saw the high-ranking officials arriving, and the SS men themselves would tell us, “There goes so and so.”

M. DUBOST: Could the civilian population know, and did it know of the plight of the internees?

VEITH: Yes, the population could know, since at Mauthausen there was a road near the quarry and those who passed by that road could see all that was happening. Moreover, the internees worked in the factories. They were separated from the other workers, but they had certain contacts with them and it was quite easy for the other workers to realize their plight.

M. DUBOST: Can you tell us what you know about a journey, to an unknown castle, of a bus carrying prisoners who were never seen again?

VEITH: At one time a method for the elimination of sick persons by injections was adopted at Mauthausen. It was particularly used by Dr. Krebsbach, nicknamed “Dr. Spritzbach” by the prisoners since it was he who had inaugurated the system of injections. There came a time when the injections were discontinued, and then persons who were too sick or too weak were sent to a castle which, we learned later, was called Hartheim, but was officially known as a Genesungslager (convalescent camp). Of all of those who went there, none ever returned. We received the death certificates directly from the political section of the camp; these certificates were secret. Everybody who went to Hartheim died. The number of dead amounted to about 5,000.

M. DUBOST: Did you see prisoners of war arrive at Mauthausen Camp?

VEITH: Certainly I saw prisoners of war. Their arrival at Mauthausen Camp took place, first of all, in front of the political section. Since I was working at the Hollerith I could watch the arrivals, for the offices faced the parade ground in front of the political section where the convoys arrived. The convoys were immediately sorted out. One part was sent to the camp for registration, and very often some of the uniformed prisoners were set aside; these had already been subjected to special violence in the political section and were handed straight over to the prison guards. They were then sent to the prisons and never heard of again. They were not registered in the camp. The only registration was made in the political section by Müller who was in charge of these prisoners.

M. DUBOST: They were prisoners of war?

VEITH: They were prisoners of war. They were very often in uniform.

M. DUBOST: Of what nationality?

VEITH: Mostly Russians and Poles.

M. DUBOST: They were brought to your camp to be killed there?

VEITH: They were brought to our camp for “Action K.”

M. DUBOST: What do you know about Action K and how do you know it?

VEITH: My knowledge of Action K is due to the fact that I was head of the Hollerith service in Mauthausen, and consequently received all the transfer forms from the various camps. And when prisoners were erroneously transferred to us as ordinary prisoners, we would put it on the transfer form which we had to send to the central office in Berlin, or rather, we would not put any number at all, as we were unable to give one. The “Politische” gave us no indications at all and even destroyed the list of names if, by chance, it ever reached us.

In conversations with my comrades of the “Politische” I discovered that this Action K was originally applied to prisoners of war who had been captured while attempting to escape. Later this action was extended further still, but always to soldiers and especially to officers who had succeeded in escaping but who had been recaptured in countries under German control.

Moreover, any person engaged in activities which might be interpreted as not corresponding to the wishes of the fascist chiefs could also be subjected to Action K. These prisoners arrived at Mauthausen and disappeared, that is, they were taken to the prison where one part would be executed on the spot and another sent to the annex of the prison, which by this time had become too small to hold them, to the famous Block 20 of Mauthausen.

M. DUBOST: You definitely state that these were prisoners of war?

VEITH: Yes, they were prisoners of war, most of them.

M. DUBOST: Do you know of an execution of officers, prisoners of war, who had been brought to the camp at Mauthausen?

VEITH: I cannot give you any names, but there were some.

M. DUBOST: Did you witness the execution of Allied officers who were murdered within 48 hours of their arrival in camp?

VEITH: I saw the arrival of the convoy of 6 September. I believe that is the one you are thinking of; I saw the arrival of this convoy and in the very same afternoon these 47 went down to the quarry dressed in nothing but their shirts and drawers. Shortly after we heard the sound of machine gun fire. I then left the office and passed at the back, pretending I was carrying documents to another office, and with my own eyes I saw these unfortunate people shot down; 19 were executed on the very same afternoon and the remainder on the following morning. Later on, all the death certificates were marked, “Killed while attempting to escape.”

M. DUBOST: Do you have the names?

VEITH: Yes, I have a copy of the names of these prisoners.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

MARSHAL: If the Court please, it is desired to announce that the Defendant Kaltenbrunner will be absent from this afternoon’s session on account of illness.

THE PRESIDENT: You may go on, M. Dubost.

M. DUBOST: We are going to complete the hearing of the witness Veith, to whom, however, I have only one more question to put.

THE PRESIDENT: Have him brought in.

[The witness, Veith, took the stand.]

M. DUBOST: You continue to testify under the oath that you already made this morning.

Will you give some additional information concerning the execution of the 47 Allied officers whom you saw shot in 48 hours at Camp Mauthausen where they had been brought?

VEITH: Those officers, those parachutists, were shot in accordance with the usual systems used whenever prisoners had to be done away with. That is to say, they were forced to work to excess, to carry heavy stones. Then they were beaten until they took heavier ones; and so on and so forth until, finally driven to extremity, they turned towards the barbed wire. If they did not do it of their own accord, they were pushed there; and they were beaten until they did so; and the moment they approached it and were perhaps about one meter away from it, they were mown down by machine guns fired by the SS guards in the watchtowers. This was the usual system for the “killing for attempted escape” as they afterwards called it.

Those 47 men were killed on the afternoon of the 6th and morning of the 7th of September.

M. DUBOST: How did you know their names?

VEITH: Their names came to me with the official list, because they had all been entered in the camp registers and I had to report to Berlin all the changes in the actual strength of the Hollerith Section. I saw all the rosters of the dead and of the new arrivals.

M. DUBOST: Did you communicate this list to an official authority?

VEITH: This list was taken by the American official authorities when I was at Mauthausen. I immediately went back to Mauthausen after my liberation, because I knew where the documents were; and the American authorities then had all the lists which we were able to find.

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, I have no further questions to ask the witness.

THE PRESIDENT: Does the British Prosecutor want to ask any questions?


THE PRESIDENT: Does the United States Prosecutor?


THE PRESIDENT: Do any members of the Defense Counsel wish to ask any questions?

HERR BABEL: I am the defense counsel for the SS and SD. Mr. President, I was in the Dachau Camp on Saturday and at the Augsburg-Göggingen Camp yesterday. I found out various things there which now enable me to question individual witnesses. I could not do this before, as I was not acquainted with local conditions. I should like to put one question. I was unable to attend here this morning on account of a conference to which I was called by General Mitchell. Consequently I did not have the cross-examination of the witness this morning. I have only one question to put to the witness now. I should like to ask whether I may cross-examine the witness further later, or if it is better to withdraw the question?

THE PRESIDENT: You can cross-examine this witness now, but the Tribunal is informed that you left General Mitchell at 15 minutes past 10.

HERR BABEL: Yes, but as a consequence of the conference I had to send a telegram and dispatch some other pressing business so that it was impossible for me to attend the session.

THE PRESIDENT: You can certainly cross-examine the witness now.

HERR BABEL: I have only one more question, namely: The witness stated that the officers in question were driven toward the wire fence. By whom were they so driven?

VEITH: They were driven to the barbed wire by the SS guards who accompanied them, and the entire Mauthausen staff was present. They were also beaten by the SS and by one or two “green” prisoners, who were with them and who were the “Kapo.” In the camps these “green” prisoners were often worse than the SS themselves.

HERR BABEL: Thus, in the Dachau Camp, inside the camp itself, within the wire enclosure, there were almost no SS guards, and that was probably also the case in Mauthausen? However . . .

VEITH: Inside the camp there was only a limited number of SS, but they changed, and none of those who belonged to the troops guarding the camp could fail to be aware of what went on in it; even if they did not enter the camp, they watched it from the watchtowers and from outside, and they saw precisely everything.

HERR BABEL: Were the guards who shot at the prisoners inside or outside the wire enclosure?

VEITH: They were in the watchtowers in the same line as the barbed wire.

HERR BABEL: Could they see from there that the officers were driven to the barbed wire by anyone by means of blows? Could they observe that they were driven there and beaten?

VEITH: They could see it so well that once or twice some of the guards refused to shoot, saying that it was not an attempt to escape and they would not shoot. They were immediately relieved from their posts, and disappeared.

HERR BABEL: Did you see that yourself?

VEITH: I did not see it myself, but I heard about it; it was told by my Kommandoführer among others, who said to me, “There’s a watchguard who refused to shoot.”

HERR BABEL: Who was this Kommandoführer? The chief of the group?

VEITH: The Kommandoführer was Wielemann. I do not remember his rank. He was not Unterscharführer, but the rank immediately below Unterscharführer, and he was in charge of the Hollerith section in Mauthausen.

HERR BABEL: I thank you.

I have no more questions to ask just now. I shall, however, make application to call the witness again, and I shall then take the opportunity to ask the rest, to put such further questions to him as I consider necessary. I request you to retain him for this purpose, here in Nuremberg. I am not in a position to cross-examine the witness this afternoon, as I did not hear his statements this morning, and I would request that the witness . . .

THE PRESIDENT: You ought to have been here. If you were released from an interview with General Mitchell at 10:15, there seems to the Tribunal, to me at any rate, to be no reason why you should not have been here while this witness was being examined.

HERR BABEL: Mr. President, this morning I discussed with General Mitchell some questions with which I have been occupied for a long time. General Mitchell agreed in the course of our conversation that my duties and activities are so extensive that it will now be necessary to appoint a second defense counsel for the SS; my presence at the sessions claims so much of my working time and has become so exhausting and so burdensome that I am often compelled to be absent from the Court. I am sorry, but in the prevailing circumstances, I cannot help it.

Further, I would like to say this: So far, over 40,000 members of the SS have made applications to the Tribunal; and although many of these are collective and not individual applications, you can imagine how wide the field is.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, no doubt your work is extensive, but this morning, as I have already told you, General Mitchell has informed the Tribunal that his interview with you finished at 10:15; and it appears to the Tribunal that you must have known that the witnesses who were giving evidence this morning were giving evidence about concentration camps.

In addition to that, you had obtained the assistance of another counsel, I think, Dr. Marx, to appear on your behalf, and he did appear on your behalf; and he will have an opportunity of cross-examining this witness if he wishes to do so now. The Tribunal considers that you must conclude your cross-examination of this witness now. I mean to say, you may ask any further questions of the witness that you wish.

HERR BABEL: It all amounts to whether I can put a question, and this I cannot do at the moment; therefore, I must renounce the cross-examination of the witness.

THE PRESIDENT: Are there any other questions to put, M. Dubost? There may be some other German counsel who wish to cross-examine this witness.

M. Dubost, do you wish to address the Tribunal?

M. DUBOST: Your Honor, I would like to state to the Tribunal that we have no reason whatsoever to fear a cross-examination of our witness or of this morning’s witness, at any time; and we are ready to ask our witnesses to stay in Nuremberg as long as may be necessary to reply to any questions from the Defense.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Babel, in view of the offer of the French Prosecutor to keep the witness in Nuremberg, the Tribunal will allow you to put any questions you wish to put to him in the course of the next 2 days. Do you understand?


DR. KURT KAUFFMANN (Counsel for Defendant Kaltenbrunner): Before I question the witness, I allow myself to raise one point which, I believe, will have an important influence on the good progress of the proceedings. The point I wish to raise is the following, and I speak in the name of my colleagues as well: Would it not be well to come to an agreement that both the Prosecution and the Defense be informed the day before a witness is brought in, which witness is to be heard? The material has now become so considerable that circumstances make it impossible to ask pertinent questions, questions which are urgently necessary in the interest of all parties.

As far as the Defense is concerned, we are ready to inform the Tribunal and the Prosecution of the witnesses we intend to ask for examination, at least one day before they are to be heard.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal has already expressed its wish that they should be informed beforehand of the witnesses who are to be called and upon what subject. I hope that Counsel for the Prosecution will take note of this wish.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Yes, I thank you.

A point of special significance emerges from the statements of the witness we heard this morning, as well as from the statements of this witness; and this point concerns something which may be of decisive importance for the Trial as a whole. The Prosecution . . .

THE PRESIDENT: You are not here to make a speech at the moment. You are to ask the witness questions.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Yes. It is the question of the responsibility of the German people. The witness has stated that the civilian population was in a position to know what was going on. I shall now try to ascertain the truth by means of a series of questions.

Did civilians look on when executions took place? Would you answer this?

VEITH: They could see the corpses scattered along the roads when the prisoners were shot while returning in convoys, and corpses were even thrown from the trains. And they could always take note of the emaciated condition of these prisoners who worked outside, because they saw them.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Do you know that it was forbidden on pain of death to say anything outside the camp about the atrocities, anything in the way of cruelties, torture, et cetera, that took place inside?

VEITH: As I spent 2 years in the camp I saw them. Some of them I saw myself, and the rest were described to me by eyewitnesses.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Could you please repeat that again? Did you see the secrecy order? What did you see?

VEITH: Not the order, I saw the execution and that is worse.

DR. KAUFFMANN: My question was this: Do you know that the strictest orders were given to the SS personnel, to the executioners, et cetera, not to speak even inside the camp, much less outside of it, of the atrocities that went on and that eyewitnesses who spoke of them rendered themselves liable to the most rigorous penalties, including the death penalty? Do you know anything about that, about such a practice inside the camps? Perhaps you will tell me whether you yourself were allowed to talk about any observations of the kind.

VEITH: I know that liberated prisoners had to sign a statement saying that they would never reveal what had happened in the camp and that they had to forget what had happened; but those who were in contact with the population, and there were many of them, did not fail to talk about it. Furthermore, Mauthausen was situated on a hill. There was a crematorium, which emitted flames 3 feet high. When you see flames 3 feet high coming out of a chimney every night, you are bound to wonder what it is; and everyone must have known that it was a crematorium.

DR. KAUFFMANN: I have no further question. Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other counsel for the defendants wish to ask any questions? Did you tell us who the “green prisoners” were? You mentioned “green prisoners.”

VEITH: Yes, these “green prisoners” were prisoners convicted under the common law. They were used by the SS to police the camps. As I have already said, they were often more bestial than the SS themselves and acted as their executioners. They did the work with which the SS did not wish to soil their hands; they were doing all the dirty work, but always by order of the Kommandoführer.

This contact with the “green” Germans was terrible for the internees, particularly for the political internees. They could not bear the sight of them, because they realized that we were not their sort, and they persecuted us for that alone. It was the same in all the camps. In all the camps we were bullied by the German criminals serving with the SS.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, do you wish to ask any other question?

M. DUBOST: Your Honor, I have no more questions to ask.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness can retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. DUBOST: I shall request the Tribunal to authorize us to hear the French witness, Dr. Dupont.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. Very well.

[The witness, Dupont, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: Is your name Dr. Dupont?

DR. VICTOR DUPONT (Witness): Dupont, Victor.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me? I swear that I will speak without hate or fear, that I will tell the truth, all the truth, nothing but the truth.

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: Raise your right hand and say, “I swear.”

DUPONT: I swear.

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.

M. DUBOST: Your name is Victor Dupont?

DUPONT: Yes, I am called Victor Dupont.

M. DUBOST: You were born on 12 December 1909?

DUPONT: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: At Charmes in the Vosges?

DUPONT: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: You are of French nationality, born of French parents?

DUPONT: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: You have won honorable distinctions. What are they?

DUPONT: I have the Legion of Honor, I am a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. I have 2 Army citations, and I have the Resistance Medal.

M. DUBOST: Were you deported to Buchenwald?

DUPONT: I was deported to Buchenwald on 24 January 1944.

M. DUBOST: You stayed there?

DUPONT: I stayed there 15 months.

M. DUBOST: Until 20 May 1945?

DUPONT: No, until 20 April 1945.

M. DUBOST: Will you make your statement on the regime in the concentration camp where you were interned and the aim of those who prescribed this regime?

DUPONT: When I arrived at Buchenwald I soon became aware of the difficult living conditions. The regime imposed upon the prisoners was not based on any principle of justice. The principle which formed the basis of this regime was the principle of the purge. I will explain.

We—I am speaking of the French—were grouped together at Buchenwald almost all of us, without having been tried by any Tribunal. In 1942, 1943, 1944, and 1945, it was quite unusual to pass any formal judgment on the prisoners. Many of us were interrogated and then deported; others were cleared by the interrogation and deported all the same. Others again were not interrogated at all. I shall give you three examples.

On 11 November 1943 elements estimated at several hundred persons were arrested at Grenoble during a demonstration commemorating the Armistice. They were brought to Buchenwald, where the greater part died. The same thing happened in the village of Verchenie (Drôme) in October 1943. I saw them at Buchenwald too. It happened again in April 1944 at St. Claude, and I saw these people brought in in August 1944.

In this way, various elements were assembled at Buchenwald subject to martial law. But there were also all kinds of people, including some who were obviously innocent, who had either been cleared by interrogation or not even interrogated at all. Finally, there were some political prisoners. They had been deported because they were members of parties which were to be suppressed.

That does not mean that the interrogations were not to be taken seriously. The interrogations which I underwent and which I saw others undergo were particularly inhuman. I shall enumerate a few of the methods:

Every imaginable kind of beating, immersion in bathtubs, squeezing of testicles, hanging, crushing of the head in iron bands, and the torturing of entire families in each other’s sight. I have, in particular, seen a wife tortured before her husband; and children were tortured before their mothers. For the sake of precision, I will quote one name: Francis Goret of the Rue de Bourgogne in Paris was tortured before his mother. Once in the camp, conditions were the same for everyone.

M. DUBOST: You spoke of racial purging as a social policy. What was the criterion?

DUPONT: At Buchenwald various elements described as “political,” “national”—mainly Jews and Gypsies—and “asocial”—especially criminals—were herded together under the same regime. There were criminals of every nation: Germans, Czechs, Frenchmen, et cetera, all living together under the same regime. A purge does not necessarily imply extermination, but this purge was achieved by means of the extermination already mentioned. It began for us in certain cases; the decision was taken quite suddenly. I shall give one example. In 1944 a convoy of several hundred Gypsy children arrived at Buchenwald, by what administrative mystery we never knew. They were assembled during the winter of 1944 and were to be sent on to Auschwitz to be gassed. One of the most tragic memories of my deportation is the way in which these children, knowing perfectly well what was in store for them, were driven into the vans, screaming and crying. They went on to Auschwitz the same day.

In other cases the extermination was carried out by progressive stages. It had already begun when the convoy arrived. For instance, in the French convoy which left Compiègne on 24 January 1944 and arrived on 26 January, I saw one van containing 100 persons, of which 12 were dead and 8 insane. During the period of my deportation I saw numerous transports come in. The same thing happened every time; only the numbers varied. In this way the elimination of a certain proportion had already been achieved when the convoy arrived. Then they were put in quarantine and exposed to cold for several hours, while roll call was taken. The weaker died. Then came extermination through work. Some of them were picked out and sent to Kommandos such as Dora, S III, and Laura. I noticed that after those departures, which took place every month, when the contingent was brought up to strength again, truck-loads of dead were brought back to Buchenwald. I even attended the post-mortems on them, and I can tell you the results. The lesions were those of a very advanced stage of cachexy. Those who had stood up to conditions for one, two, or three months very often exhibited the lesions characteristic of acute tuberculosis, mostly of the granular type. In Buchenwald itself prisoners had to work; and there, as everywhere else, the only hope of survival lay in work. Extermination in Buchenwald was carried out in accordance with a principle of selection laid down by the medical officer in charge, Dr. Shiedlauski. These selections . . .

M. DUBOST: Excuse me for interrupting. What is the nationality of this medical officer in charge?

DUPONT: He was a German SS doctor.

M. DUBOST: Are you sure of that?

DUPONT: Yes, I am quite sure.

M. DUBOST: Are you testifying as an eyewitness?

DUPONT: I am testifying as an eyewitness.

M. DUBOST: Go on, please.

DUPONT: Shiedlauski carried out the selection and picked out the sick and invalids. Prior to January 1945 they were sent to Auschwitz; later on they went to Bergen-Belsen. None of them ever returned.

Another case which I witnessed concerns a Jewish labor squad which was sent to Auschwitz and stayed there several months. When they came back, they were unfit for even the lighter work. A similar fate overtook them. They also were sent to Auschwitz again. I myself personally witnessed these things. I was present at the selection and I witnessed their departure.

Later on, the executions in Buchenwald took place in the camp itself. To my own knowledge they began in September 1944 in room 7, a little room in the Revier. The men were done away with by means of inter-cardiac injections. The output was not great; it did not exceed a few score a day, at the most.

Later on more and more convoys came in, and the number of cachexy cases increased. The executions had to be speeded up. At first they were carried out as soon as the transports arrived; but from January 1945 onwards they were taken care of in a special block, Block 61. At that date all those nicknamed “Mussulmans” on account of their appearance were collected in this block. We never saw them without their blankets over their shoulders. They were unfit for even the lightest work. They all had to go through Block 61. The death toll varied daily from a minimum of 10 to about 200 in Block 61. The execution was performed by injecting phenol into the heart in the most brutal manner. The bodies were then carted to the crematorium mostly during roll calls or at night. Finally, extermination was also always assured at the end by convoys. The convoys which left Buchenwald while the Allies were advancing were used to assure extermination.

To give an example: At the end of March 1945 elements withdrawn from the S III detachment arrived at Buchenwald. They were in a state of complete exhaustion when they arrived and quite unfit for any kind of exertion. They were the first to be re-expedited, two days after their arrival. It was only about half a mile from their starting point in the small camp, that is, at the back of the Buchenwald Camp, to their point of assembly for roll call; and to give you an idea of the state of weakness in which these people were, I need only say that between this starting point and their assembly point, that is, over a distance of half a mile, we saw 60 of them collapse and die. They could not go on further. Most of them died very soon, in a few hours or in the course of the next day. So much for the systematic extermination which I witnessed in Buchenwald, including . . .

M. DUBOST: What about those who were left?

DUPONT: Those who were left when the last convoy went out? That is a complicated story. We were deeply grieved about them. About the 1st of April, though I cannot guarantee the exact date, the commander of the camp, Pister, assembled a large number of prisoners and addressed them as follows:

“The Allied advance has already reached the immediate neighborhood of Buchenwald. I wish to hand over to the Allies the keys of the camp. I do not want any atrocities. I wish the camp as a whole to be handed over.”

As a matter of actual fact, the Allied advance was held up, more than we wanted at least, and evacuation was begun. A delegation of prisoners went to see the commander, reminding him of his word, for he had given his word emphasizing that it was his “word of honor as a soldier.” He seemed acutely embarrassed and explained that Sauckel, the Governor of Thuringia, had given orders that no prisoner should remain in Buchenwald, for that constituted a danger to the province.

Furthermore, we knew that all who knew the secrets of the administration of Buchenwald Camp would be put out of the way. A few days before we were liberated 43 of our comrades belonging to different nationalities were called out to be done away with, and an unusual phenomenon occurred. The camp revolted; the men were hidden and never given up. We also knew that under no circumstances would anyone who had been employed, either in the experimental block or in the infirmary, be allowed to leave the camp. That is all I have to say about the last few days.

M. DUBOST: This officer in command of the camp, whom you have just said gave his word of honor as a soldier, was he a soldier?

DUPONT: His attitude towards the prisoners was ruthless; but he had his orders. Frankly, he was a particular type of soldier; but he was not acting on his own initiative in treating the prisoners in this way.

M. DUBOST: To what branch of the service did he belong?

DUPONT: He belonged to the SS Totenkopf Division.

M. DUBOST: Was he an SS man?

DUPONT: Yes, he was an SS man.

M. DUBOST: He was acting on orders, you say?

DUPONT: He was certainly acting on orders.

M. DUBOST: For what purposes were the prisoners used?

DUPONT: The prisoners were used in such a way that no attention was paid to the fact that they were human beings. They were used for experimental purposes. At Buchenwald the experiments were made in Block 46. The men who were to be employed there were always selected by means of a medical examination. On those occasions when I was present it was performed by Dr. Shiedlauski, of whom I have already spoken.

M. DUBOST: Was he a doctor?

DUPONT: Yes, he was a doctor. The internees were used for the hardest labor; in the Laura mines, working in the salt mines as, for instance, in the Mansleben-am-See Kommando, clearing up bomb debris. It must be remembered that the more difficult the labor conditions were, the harsher was the supervision by the guards.

The internees were used in Buchenwald for any kind of labor; in earth works, in quarries, and in factories. To cite a particular case: There were two factories attached to Buchenwald, the Gustloff works and the Mühlbach works. They were munition factories under technical and non-military management. In this particular case there was some sort of rivalry between the SS and the technical management of the factory. The technical management, concerned with its output, took the part of the prisoners to the extent of occasionally obtaining supplementary rations for them. Internee labor had certain advantages. The cost was negligible, and from a security point of view the maximum of secrecy was ensured, as the internees had no contact with the outside world and therefore no leakage was possible.

M. DUBOST: You mean leakage of military information?

DUPONT: I mean leakage of military information.

M. DUBOST: Could outsiders see that the internees were ill-treated and wretched?

DUPONT: That is another question, certainly.

M. DUBOST: Will you answer it later?

DUPONT: I shall answer it later. I have omitted one detail. The internees were also used to a certain extent after death. The ashes resulting from the cremations were thrown into the excrement pit and served to fertilize the fields around Buchenwald. I add this detail because it struck me vividly at the time.

Finally, as I said, work, whatever it might be, was the internees’ only chance of survival. As soon as they were no longer of any possible use, they were done for.

M. DUBOST: Were not internees used as “blood donors,” involuntary of course?

DUPONT: I forgot that point. Prisoners assigned to light work, whose output was poor, were used as blood donors. Members of the Wehrmacht came several times. I saw them twice at Buchenwald, taking blood from these men. The blood was taken in a ward known as CP-2, that is, Operation Ward 2.

M. DUBOST: This was done on orders from higher quarters?

DUPONT: I do not see how it could have been done otherwise.

M. DUBOST: On their own initiative?

DUPONT: Not on the initiative of anyone in the camp. These elements had nothing to do with the camp administration or the guards. I must make it clear that those whom I saw belonged to the Wehrmacht, whereas we were guarded by SS, all of them from the Totenkopf Division. Towards the end, a special use was made of them.

In the early months of 1945, members of the Gestapo came to Buchenwald and took away all the papers of those who had died, in order to re-establish their identity and to make out forged papers. One Jew was specially employed to touch up photographs and to adapt the papers which had belonged to the dead for the use of persons whom, of course, we did not know. The Jew disappeared, and I do not know what became of him. We never saw him again.

But this utilization of identification papers was not confined to the dead. Several hundred French internees were summoned to the “Fliegerverwaltung” and there subjected to a very precise interrogation on their person, their connections, their convictions, and their background. They were then told that they would on no account be allowed to receive any correspondence, or even parcels—those of them who ever received any. From an administrative point of view all traces of them were effaced and contact with the outside world was rendered even more impossible for them than it had been under ordinary circumstances. We were deeply concerned about the fate of these comrades. We were liberated very soon after that, and I can only say that prisoners were used in this way, that their identification papers were used for manufacturing forged documents.

M. DUBOST: What was the effect of this kind of life?

DUPONT: The effect of this kind of life on the human organism?

M. DUBOST: On the human organism.

DUPONT: As to the human organism, there was only one effect: the degradation of the human being. The living conditions which I have just described were enough in themselves to produce such degradation. It was done systematically. An unrelenting will seemed to be at work to reduce those men to the same level, the lowest possible level of human degradation.

To begin with, the first degrading factor was the way in which they were mixed. It was permissible to mix nationalities, but not to mix indiscriminately every possible type of prisoner: political, military—for the members of the French resistance movement were soldiers—racial elements, and common-law criminals.

Criminals of all nationalities were herded together with their compatriots, and every nationality lived side by side, so conditions of living were distressing. In addition, there was overcrowding, unsanitary conditions, and compulsory labor. I shall give a few examples to show that prisoners were mixed quite indiscriminately.

In March 1944, I saw the French General Duval die. He had been working on the “terrasse” with me all day. When we came back, he was covered with mud and completely exhausted. He died a few hours later.

The French General Vernaud died on a straw mattress, filthy with excrement, in room Number 6, where those on the verge of death were taken, surrounded by dying men.

I saw M. De Tessan die . . .

M. DUBOST: Will you explain to the Tribunal who M. De Tessan was?

DUPONT: M. De Tessan was a former French minister, married to an American. He also died on a straw mattress, covered with pus, from a disease known as septicopyohemia.

I also witnessed the death of Count de Lipkowski, who had done brilliant military service in this war. He had been granted the honors of war by the German Army and had, for one thing, been invited to Paris by Rommel, who desired to show the admiration he felt for his military brilliance. He died miserably in the winter of 1944.

One further instance: The Belgian Minister Janson was in the camp living under the conditions which I have already described, and of which you must have already heard very often. He died miserably, a physical and mental wreck. His intellect had gone and he had partially lost his reason.

I cite only extreme cases and especially those of generals, as they were said to be granted special conditions. I saw no sign of that.

The last stage in this process of the degradation of human beings was the setting of internee against internee.

M. DUBOST: Before dealing with this point, will you describe the conditions in which you found your former professor, Léon Kindberg, professor of medicine?

DUPONT: I studied medicine under Professor Maurice Léon Kindberg at the Beaujon Hospital.

M. DUBOST: In Paris?

DUPONT: Yes, in Paris. A very highly cultured and brilliantly intelligent man. In January 1945 I learned that he had just arrived from Monovitz. I found him in Block 58, a block which in normal circumstances would hold 300 men, and into which 1,200 had been crowded—Hungarians, Poles, Russians, Czechs, with a large proportion of Jews in an extraordinary state of misery. I did not recognize Léon Kindberg because there was nothing to distinguish him from the usual type to be found in these blocks. There was no longer any sign of intellect in him and it was hard to find anything of the man that I had formerly known. We managed to get him out of that block but his health was unfortunately too much impaired and he died shortly after his liberation.

M. DUBOST: Can you tell the Tribunal, as far as you know, the “crimes” committed by this man?

DUPONT: After the armistice Léon Kindberg settled in Toulouse to practice the treatment of pulmonary consumption. I know from an absolutely reliable source that he had taken no part whatsoever in activities directed against the German occupation authorities in France. They found out that he was a Jew and as such he was arrested and deported. He drifted into Buchenwald by way of Auschwitz and Monovitz.

M. DUBOST: What crime had General Duval committed that he should be imprisoned along with pimps, moral degenerates, and murderers? What had General Vernaud done?

DUPONT: I know nothing about the activities of General Duval and General Vernaud during the occupation. All I can say is that they were certainly not asocial.

M. DUBOST: What about Count de Lipkowski and M. De Tessan?

DUPONT: Nor has the Count de Lipkowski or M. De Tessan committed any of the faults usually attributed to asocial elements or common-law criminals.

M. DUBOST: You may proceed.

DUPONT: The means used to achieve the final degradation of the internees as a whole was the torture of them by their fellow prisoners. Let me give a particularly brutal instance. In Kommando A. S. 6, which was situated at Mansleben-am-See, 70 kilometers from Buchenwald, there were prisoners of every nationality, including a large portion of Frenchmen. I had two friends there: Antoine d’Aimery, a son of General d’Aimery, and Thibaut, who was studying to become a missionary.

M. DUBOST: Catholic?

DUPONT: Catholic. At Mansleben-am-See hangings took place in public in the hall of a factory connected with the salt mine. The SS were present at these hangings in full dress uniform, wearing their decorations.

The prisoners were forced to be present at these hangings under threats of the most cruel beatings. When they hanged the poor wretches, the prisoners had to give the Hitler salute. Worse still, one prisoner was chosen to pull away the stool on which the victim stood. He could not evade the order, as the consequences to himself would have been too grave. When the execution had been carried out, the prisoners had to file off in front of the victim between two SS men. They were made to touch the body and, gruesome detail, look the dead man in the eyes. I believe that men who had been forced to go through such rites must inevitably lose the sense of their dignity as human beings.

In Buchenwald itself all the executive work was entrusted to the internees, that is, the hangings were carried out by a German prisoner assisted by other prisoners. The camp was policed by prisoners. When someone in the camp was sentenced to death, it was their duty to find him and take him to the place of execution.

Selection for the labor squads, with which we were well acquainted, especially for Dora, Laura, and S III—extermination detachments—was carried out by prisoners, who decided which of us were to go there. In this way the internees were forced down to the worst possible level of degradation, inasmuch as every man was forced to become the executioner of his fellow.

I have already referred to Block 61, where the extermination of the physically unfit and those otherwise unsuited for labor was carried out. These executions were also carried out by prisoners under SS supervision and control. From the point of view of humanity in general, this was perhaps the worst crime of all, for these men who were constrained to torture their fellow-beings have now been restored to life, but profoundly changed. What is to become of them? What are they going to do?

M. DUBOST: Who was responsible for these crimes as far as your personal knowledge goes?

DUPONT: One thing which strikes me as being particularly significant is that the methods which I observed in Buchenwald now appear to have been the same, or almost the same, as those prevailing in all the other camps. The degree of uniformity in the way in which the camps were run is clear evidence of orders from higher quarters. In the case of Buchenwald, in particular, the personnel, no matter how rough it might be, would not have done such things on their own initiative. Moreover, the camp chief and the SS doctor, himself, always pleaded superior orders, often in a vague manner. The name most frequently invoked was that of Himmler. Other names also were given. The chief medical officer for all the camps, Lolling, was mentioned on numerous occasions in connection with the extermination block, especially by an SS doctor in the camp, named Bender. In regard to the selection of invalids or Jews to be sent to Auschwitz or Bergen-Belsen to be gassed, I heard the name of Pohl mentioned.

M. DUBOST: What were the functions of Pohl?

DUPONT: He was chief of the SS administration in Berlin, Division D 2.

M. DUBOST: Could the German people as a whole have been in ignorance of these atrocities, or were they bound to know of them?

DUPONT: As these camps had been in existence for years, it is impossible for them not to have known. Our transport stopped at Trèves on its way in. The prisoners in some vans were completely naked while in others they were clothed. There was a crowd of people around the station and they all saw the transport. Some of them excited the SS men patrolling the platform. But there were other channels through which information could reach the population. To begin with, there were squads working outside the camps. Labor squads went out from Buchenwald to Weimar, Erfurt, and Jena. They left in the morning and came back at night, and during the day they were among the civilian population. In the factories, too, the technical crew were not members of the armed forces. The “Meister” were not SS men. They went home every night after supervising the work of the prisoners all day. Certain factories even employed civilian labor—the Gustloff works in Weimar, for instance. During the work, the internees and civilians were together.

The civil authorities were responsible for victualling the camps and were allowed to enter them, and I have seen civilian trucks coming into the camp.

The railway authorities were necessarily informed on those matters. Numerous trains carried prisoners daily from one camp to another; or from France to Germany; and these trains were driven by railway men. Moreover, there was a regular daily train to Buchenwald as a terminal station. The railway administrative authorities must, therefore, have been well informed.

Orders were also given in the factories, and industrialists could not fail to be informed regarding the personnel they employed in their factories. I may add that visits took place; the German prisoners were sometimes visited. I knew certain German internees, and I know that on the occasion of those visits they talked to their relatives, which they could hardly do without informing their home circle of what was going on. It would appear that it is impossible to deny that the German people knew of the camps.

M. DUBOST: The Army?

DUPONT: The Army knew of the camps. At least, this is what I could observe. Every week so-called commissions came to Buchenwald, a group of officers who came to visit the camp. There were SS among these officers; but I very often saw members of the Wehrmacht, the Luftwaffe, who came on those visits. Sometimes we were able to identify the personalities who visited the camp, rarely so far as I was concerned. On 22 March 1945 General Mrugowski came to visit the camp. In particular, he spent a long time in Block 61. He was accompanied on this visit by an SS general and the chief medical officer of the camp, Dr. Shiedlauski.

Another point, during the last few months, the Buchenwald guard, plus SS men . . .

M. DUBOST: Excuse me for interrupting you. Could you tell us about Block 61?

DUPONT: Block 61 was the extermination block for those suffering from cachexy—in other words, those arrived in such a state of exhaustion that they were totally unfit for work.

M. DUBOST: Is it direct testimony you are giving about this visit to Block 61?

DUPONT: This is from my own personal observation.

M. DUBOST: Whom does it concern?

DUPONT: General Mrugowski.

M. DUBOST: In the Army?

DUPONT: A doctor and an SS general whom I cannot identify.

M. DUBOST: Were university circles unaware of the work done in the camps?

DUPONT: At the Pathological Institute in Buchenwald, pathological preparations were made; and naturally some of them were out of the ordinary, since—and I am speaking as a doctor—we encountered cases that can no longer be observed, cases such as have been described in the books of the last century. Some excellent pieces of work were prepared and sent to universities, especially the University of Jena. On the other hand there were also some exhibits which could not properly be described as anatomical. Some prepared tattoo marks were sent to universities.

M. DUBOST: Did you personally see that?

DUPONT: I saw these tattoo marks prepared.

M. DUBOST: Then how did they obtain the anatomic exhibits, how did they get these tattoo marks? They waited for a natural death, of course.

DUPONT: The cases I observed were natural deaths or executions. Before our arrival—and I can name witnesses who can testify to this—they killed a man to get these tattoo marks. It happened, I must emphasize, when I was not at Buchenwald. I am repeating what was told me by witnesses whose names I will give. During the period when the camp was commanded by Koch, people who had particularly artistic tattoo marks were killed. The witness I can refer to is a Luxembourger called Nicolas Simon who lives in Luxembourg. He spent 6 years in Buchenwald in exceptional conditions where he had unprecedented opportunities of observation.

M. DUBOST: But I am told that Koch was sentenced to death and executed because of these excesses.

DUPONT: As far as I know, Koch was mixed up with some sort of swindling affair. He quarrelled with the SS administration. He was undoubtedly arrested and imprisoned.

THE PRESIDENT: We had better have an adjournment now.

[A recess was taken.]

M. DUBOST: We stopped at the end of the Koch story and the witness was telling the Tribunal that Koch had been executed not for the crimes that he had committed with regard to the internees in his charge, but because of the numerous dishonest acts of which he had been guilty during his period of service.

Did I understand the witness’ explanation correctly?

DUPONT: I said explicitly that he had been accused of dishonesty. I cannot give precise details of all the charges. I cannot say that he was accused exclusively of dishonest acts by his administration; I know that such charges were made against him, but I have no further information.

M. DUBOST: Have you nothing to add?

DUPONT: I can say that this information came from Dr. Owen, who had been arrested at the same time and released again and who returned to Buchenwald towards the end, that is, early in 1945.

M. DUBOST: What was the nationality of this doctor?

DUPONT: German. He was in detention. He was an SS man and Koch and he were arrested at the same time. Owen was released and came back to Buchenwald restored to his rank and his functions at the beginning of 1945. He was quite willing to talk to the prisoners and the information that I have given comes from him.

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions to ask the witness, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any member of the Defense Counsel wish to ask any questions?

DR. MERKEL: I am the Defense Counsel for the Gestapo.

Witness, you previously stated that the methods of treatment in Buchenwald were not peculiar to the Buchenwald Camp but must be ascribed to a general order. The reasons you gave for this statement were that you had seen those customs and methods in all the other camps too. How am I to understand this expression “in all the other camps”?

DUPONT: I am speaking of concentration camps; to be precise, a certain number of them, Mauthausen, Dachau, Sachsenhausen; labor squads such as Dora, Laura, S III, Mansleben, Ebensee, to mention these only.

DR. MERKEL: Were you yourself in those camps?

DUPONT: I myself went to Buchenwald. I collected exact testimony about the other camps from friends who were there. In any case, the number of friends of mine who died is a sufficiently eloquent proof that extermination was carried out in the same way in all the camps.

HERR BABEL: I should like to know to what block you belonged. Perhaps you can tell the Tribunal—you have already mentioned the point—how the prisoners were distributed? Did they not also bear certain external markings, red patches on the clothing of some and green on that of others?

DUPONT: There were in fact a number of badges, all of which were found in the same Kommandos. To give an example, where I was—in the “terrassekommando” known as “Entwässerung” (drainage)—I worked along side of German “common-laws” wearing the green badge. Regarding the nationalities in this Kommando, there were Russians, Czechs, Belgians, and French. Our badges were different; our treatment was identical, and in this particular case we were even commanded by “common-laws.”

HERR BABEL: I did not quite hear the beginning of your answer. I asked whether the internees were divided into specific categories identifiable externally by means of stars or some kind of distinguishing mark: green, blue, et cetera?

DUPONT: I said that there were various badges in the camp, triangular badges which applied in principle to different categories, but all the men were mixed up together, and subjected to the same treatment.

HERR BABEL: I did not ask you about their treatment, but about the distinctive badges.

DUPONT: For the French it was a badge in the form of a shield.

HERR BABEL: For all the prisoners, not only the French.

DUPONT: I am answering you. In the case of the French, who were those I knew best, the red, political badge was given to everyone without discrimination, including the prisoners brought over from Fort Barraut, who were common-law criminals. I saw the same thing among the Czechs and the Russians. It is true that the use of different badges had been intended, but that was never put into practice in any reasonable way.

To come back to what I have already stated, even if there were different badges, the people were all mixed up together, nevertheless, and subjected exactly to the same treatment and the same conditions.

HERR BABEL: We have already heard several times that prisoners of various nationalities were mixed up together. That is not what I asked you. You were in the camp for a sufficiently long period to be able to answer my question. How were these prisoners divided? As far as I know, they were divided into criminal, political, and other groups, and each group distinguished by a special sign worn on the clothing—green, blue, red, or some other color.

DUPONT: The use of different badges for different categories had been planned. These categories were mixed up together. “Criminals” were side by side with prisoners classed as “political.” There were, however, blocks in which one or another of those elements predominated; but they were not divided up into specific groups distinguished by the particular badge they wore.

HERR BABEL: I have been told, for instance, that political prisoners wore blue badges and the criminals wore red ones. We have already had a witness who confirmed this to a certain extent by stating that criminals wore a green badge and asocial offenders a different badge and that the category to which they belonged could be seen at a glance.

DUPONT: It is true that different badges existed. It is true that the use of these badges for different categories was foreseen; but if I am to confine myself to the truth, I must emphasize the fact that the full use was not made of these badges. For the French, in particular, there were only political badges; and this increased the confusion still more since notorious criminals from the ordinary civil prisons were regarded everywhere as political prisoners. The badges were intended to identify the different existing categories, but they were not employed systematically. They were not employed at all for the French prisoners.

HERR BABEL: If I understand you correctly, you say that all French prisoners were classified as political prisoners?

DUPONT: That is correct.

HERR BABEL: Now, among these French prisoners, as you said yourself, is it not true to say that there were not only political prisoners but also a large proportion of criminals?

DUPONT: There were some among . . .

HERR BABEL: At least, I took your previous statement to mean that. You said that quite definitely.

DUPONT: I did say so. I said that there were criminals from special prisons who were not given the green badge with an F, which they should have received, but the political badge.

HERR BABEL: What was your employment in the camp? You are a doctor, are you not?

DUPONT: I arrived in January. For 3 months I was assigned first to the quarry and then to the “terrasse.” After that I was assigned to the Revier, that is to say the camp infirmary.

HERR BABEL: What were your duties there?

DUPONT: I was assigned to the ambulance service for internal diseases.

HERR BABEL: Were you able to act on your own initiative? What sort of instructions did you receive regarding the treatment of patients?

DUPONT: We acted under the control of an SS doctor. We had a certain number of beds for certain patients, in the proportion of one bed to 20 patients. We had practically no medical supplies. I worked in the infirmary up to the liberation.

HERR BABEL: Did you receive instructions regarding the treatment of patients? Were you told to look after them properly or were you given instructions to administer treatment which would cause death?

DUPONT: As regards that, I was ordered to select the incurables for extermination. I never carried out this order.

HERR BABEL: Were you told to select them for extermination? I did not quite hear your reply. Will you please repeat it?

DUPONT: I was ordered to select those who were dangerously ill so that they might be sent to Block 61 where they were to be exterminated. That was the only order I received concerning the patients.

HERR BABEL: “Where were they to be exterminated?” I asked if you were told that they were to be selected for extermination. Were you told—“They will be sent to Block 61?” Were you also told what was to happen to them in Block 61?

DUPONT: Block 61 was in charge of a noncommissioned officer called Wilhelm, who personally supervised the executions; and it was he who ordered what patients should be selected to be sent to that block. I think the situation is sufficiently clear.

HERR BABEL: I beg your pardon. You were given no specific details?

DUPONT: The order to send the incurables . . .

HERR BABEL: Witness, it strikes me that you are not giving a straightforward answer of “yes” or “no,” but that you persist in evading the question.

DUPONT: It was said that these patients were to be sent to Block 61. Nothing more was added but every patient sent to Block 61 was executed.

HERR BABEL: That is not first-hand observation. You found out or you heard that those who were sent there did not come back.

DUPONT: That is not correct. I could see for myself, for I was the only doctor who could enter Block 61, which was under the command of an internee called Louis Cunish (or Remisch). I was able to get a few of the patients out; the others died.

HERR BABEL: If such a thing was said to you, why did you not say that you would not do it?

DUPONT: If I understand the question correctly, I am being asked why, when I was told to send the most serious cases . . .

HERR BABEL: When you received instructions to select patients for Block 61 why did you not say, “I know what will happen to those people, and therefore I will not do it.”

DUPONT: Because it would have meant death.

HERR BABEL: And what would it have meant if Germans had refused to carry out such an order?

DUPONT: What Germans are you talking about? German internees?

HERR BABEL: A German doctor, if you like, or anyone else employed in the hospital. What would have happened to him if he had received such an order and refused to carry it out?

DUPONT: If an internee refused point-blank to execute such an order, it meant death. In point of fact, we sometimes could evade such orders. I emphasize the fact that I never sent anyone to Block 61.

HERR BABEL: I have one more general question to ask about conditions in the camp. For those who have never seen a camp it is difficult to imagine what conditions were actually like. Perhaps you could give the Tribunal a short description of how the camp was arranged.

DUPONT: I think I have already spoken at sufficient length on the organization of the camp. I should like to ask the President whether it will serve any useful purpose to return to this subject.

THE PRESIDENT: I believe it is not necessary. [To Herr Babel] If you want to put any particular cross-examination to him to show he is not telling the truth, you can, but not to ask him for a general description.

HERR BABEL: The camp consists of an inner site surrounded and secured by barbed wire. The barracks in which the prisoners were housed were inside this camp. How was this inner camp guarded?

THE PRESIDENT: Will you kindly put one question at a time? The question you just put involves three or four different matters.

HERR BABEL: How was the part of the camp in which the living quarters are situated, separated from the rest? What security measures were taken?

DUPONT: The camp was a unified whole, cut off from the rest of the world by an electrified barbed wire network.

HERR BABEL: Where were the guards?

DUPONT: The guards of the camp were in towers situated all around the camp; they were stationed at the gate and they patrolled inside the camp itself.

HERR BABEL: Inside the camp? Inside the barbed wire enclosure?

DUPONT: Obviously, inside the camp and inside the barracks, of course. They had the right to go everywhere.

HERR BABEL: I have been informed that each separate barrack was under the supervision of only one man, a German SS man or a member of some other organization, that there were no other guards, that these guards were not intended to act as guards but only to keep order, and that the so-called Kapos, who were chosen from the ranks of the prisoners, had the same authority as the guards and performed the duties of the guards. It may have been different in Buchenwald. My information comes from Dachau.

DUPONT: I have already answered all these questions in my statement by saying that the camps were run by the SS in a manner which is common knowledge and that in addition the SS employed the internees as intermediaries in many instances. This was the case in Buchenwald and, I suppose, in all the other concentration camps.

HERR BABEL: The answer to the question has again been highly evasive. I shall not, however, pursue the matter any further, as in any case I shall not receive a definite answer.

But I should like to put one further question: You stated in connection with the facts you described that a professor, whose name I could not understand through the earphones and who was, I believe, a professor of your own, was housed in Block 58. You stated in connection with the question of degradation that at first 300 people, I think, were housed there and later on 1,200. Is that correct?

DUPONT: There were 1,200 men in Block 58 when I found Dr. Kindberg there.

HERR BABEL: Yes. And if I understood you correctly, you said that in this block there were not only Frenchmen, but also Russians, Poles, Czechs, and Jews and that a state of degradation was caused not only through the herding together of 1,200 people but also through the intermingling of so many different nationalities.

DUPONT: I want to make it clear that the intermingling of elements speaking a different language, men who are unable to understand each other, is not a crime; but it was a pre-disposing factor which furthered all the other measures employed to bring about a state of human degradation among the prisoners.

HERR BABEL: So you consider that the intermingling of Frenchmen, Russians, Poles, Czechs, and Jews is a degradation?

DUPONT: I do not see the point of this question. The fact of intermingling . . .

HERR BABEL: There is no need for you to see the point; I know why I am asking the question.

DUPONT: The fact of putting men who speak different languages together is not degrading. I did not either think or say such a thing; but the herding together of elements which differ from each other in every respect and especially in that of language, in itself made living conditions more difficult, and paved the way for the application of other measures which I have already described at length and whose final aim was the degradation of the human being.

HERR BABEL: I cannot understand why the necessity of associating with people whose language one does not understand should be degrading.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Babel, he has given his answer, that he considers it tended to degradation. It does not matter whether you understand it or not.

HERR BABEL: Mr. President, the transmission through the earphones is sometimes so imperfect that I, at least, often cannot hear exactly what the witness says and for that reason I have unfortunately been compelled to have an answer repeated from time to time.

M. DUBOST: I should not like the Tribunal to mistake this interpolation for an interruption of the cross-examination; but I think I must say that some confusion was undoubtedly created in the mind of the Defense Counsel just now in consequence of an interpreter’s error which has been brought to my notice.

He asked my witness an insidious question, namely, whether the French deportees were criminals for the most part, and the question was interpreted as follows: whether the French deportees were criminals. The witness answered the question as translated into French and not as asked in German. I therefore request that the question be put once more by the Defense Counsel and correctly translated.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you understand what Mr. Dubost said, Dr. Babel?

HERR BABEL: I think I understand the substance. I think I understand that there was a mistake in the translation. I am not in a position to judge; I cannot follow both the French and German text.

THE PRESIDENT: I think the best course is to continue your cross-examination, if you have any more questions to ask, and Mr. Dubost can clear up the difficulty in re-examination.

HERR BABEL: Mr. President, the Defense Counsel for Kaltenbrunner has already explained today that it is very difficult for the Defense to cross-examine a witness without being informed at least one day before as to the subjects on which the witness is to be heard. The testimony given by today’s witnesses was so voluminous that it is impossible for me to follow it without previous preparation and to prepare and conduct from brief notes the extensive cross-examinations which are necessary.

To my knowledge, the President has already informed Defense Counsel for the organizations that we shall have an opportunity of re-examining the witnesses later or of calling them on our own behalf.

THE PRESIDENT: I have already said what I have to say on behalf of the Tribunal on that point, but as Counsel for the Defense must have anticipated that witnesses would be called as to the conditions in the concentration camps, I should have thought they could have prepared their cross-examination during the 40 or more days during which the Trial has taken place.

HERR BABEL: Mr. President, I do not think that this is the proper time for me to argue the matter with the Tribunal, but I may perhaps be given the opportunity of doing so later in a closed session. I consider this necessary in the interests of the rapid and unhampered progress of the Trial.

I have no desire whatsoever to delay the proceedings. I have the greatest interest in expediting them as far as possible, but I am anxious not to do so at the cost of prejudicing the defense of the organizations.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Babel, I have already pointed out to you that you must have anticipated that the witnesses might be called to state the conditions in concentration camps. You must therefore have had full opportunity during the days the Trial has taken place for making up your mind on what points you would cross-examine, and I see no reason to discuss the matter with you.

HERR BABEL: Thank you for this information. But naturally I cannot know in advance exactly what the witness is going to say, and I cannot cross-examine him until I have heard him. I know, of course, that a witness is going to make a statement about concentration camps but I cannot know in advance which particular points he will discuss.

M. DUBOST: I would ask the Tribunal to note that in questioning the French witness the Defense used certain words the literal translation of which is “for the most part.” This applied to the character of the French deportees. The question was, “Were they criminals for the most part?” The witness understood it to be as I did: “Did you say that they were criminals?” and not “that the convoys were for the most part composed of criminals.” His reply was the natural one. The Tribunal will allow me to ask the witness to give details. What was the proportion of common-law criminals and patriots respectively among the deportees? Was he himself a common-law criminal or a patriot? Were the generals and other personalities whose names he has given us common-law criminals or patriots, speaking generally?

DUPONT: The proportion of French common-law criminals was very small. The common-law criminals came from Fort Barraut in a convoy. I cannot give the exact figures, but there were only a few hundred out of all the internees. In other incoming convoys the proportion of common-law criminals included was only 2 or 3 per thousand.

M. DUBOST: Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: The witness can retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, are you proposing or asking to call other witnesses upon concentration camps? Because, as I have already pointed out to you, the evidence, with the exception of Dr. Babel’s recent cross-examination, has practically not been cross-examined; and it is supported by other film evidence. We are instructed by Article 18 of the Charter to conduct the Trial in as expeditious a way as possible; and I will point out to you, as ordered under 24e of the Charter, you have the opportunity of calling rebutting evidence, if it were necessary and, therefore, if the evidence which has been so fully gone into as to the condition in concentration camps . . .

M. DUBOST: The witness whom I propose to ask the Tribunal to hear will elucidate a point which has been pending for several weeks. The Tribunal will remember that when my American colleagues were presenting their evidence, the question of ascertaining whether Kaltenbrunner had been in Mauthausen arose. In evidence of this, I am going to call M. Boix, who will prove to the Tribunal that Kaltenbrunner had been in Mauthausen. He has photographs of that visit and the Tribunal will see them, as the witness brought them with him.


[The witness, Boix, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: What is your name?

M. FRANÇOIS BOIX (Witness): François Boix.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you French?

BOIX: I am a Spanish refugee.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me. I swear to speak without hate or fear, to say the truth, all the truth, only the truth.

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: Raise your right hand and say, “I swear.”

BOIX: I swear.

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.

M. Dubost, will you spell the name.

M. DUBOST: B-O-I-X. [Turning to the witness.] You were born on 14 August 1920 in Barcelona?

BOIX: Yes.

M. DUBOST: You are a news photographer, and you were interned in the camp of Mauthausen, since . . .

BOIX: Since 27 January 1941.

M. DUBOST: You handed over to the commission of inquiry a certain number of photographs?

BOIX: Yes.

M. DUBOST: They are going to be projected on the screen and you will state under oath under what circumstances and where these pictures were taken?

BOIX: Yes.

M. DUBOST: How did you obtain these pictures?

BOIX: Owing to my professional knowledge, I was sent to Mauthausen to work in the identification branch of the camp. There was a photographic branch, and pictures of everything happening in the camp could be taken and sent to the High Command in Berlin.

[Pictures were then projected on the screen.]

M. DUBOST: This is the general view of the quarry. Is this where the internees worked?

BOIX: Most of them.

M. DUBOST: Where is the stairway?

BOIX: In the rear.

M. DUBOST: How many steps were there?

BOIX: 160 steps at first; later on there were 186.

M. DUBOST: We can proceed to the next picture.

BOIX: This was taken in the quarry during a visit from Reichsführer Himmler, Kaltenbrunner, the Governor of Linz, and some other leaders whose names I do not know. What you see below is the dead body of a man who had fallen from the top of the quarry (70 meters), as happened every day.

M. DUBOST: We can proceed to the next picture.

BOIX: This was taken in April 1941. My Spanish comrades who had sought refuge in France are pulling a wagon loaded with earth. That was the work we had to do.

M. DUBOST: By whom was this picture taken?

BOIX: At that time by Paul Ricken, a professor from Essen.

M. DUBOST: We may proceed to the next one.

BOIX: This staged the scene of an Austrian who had escaped. He was a carpenter in the garage and he managed to make a box, a box in which he could hide and so get out of the camp. But after a while he was recaptured. They put him on the wheelbarrow in which corpses were carried to the crematorium. There were some placards saying in German, “Alle Vögel sind schon da,” meaning “All the birds are back again.” He was sentenced and then paraded in front of 10,000 deportees to the music of a gypsy band playing a song “J’attendrai.” When he was hanged, his body swung to and fro in the wind while they played the very well known song, “Bill Black Polka.”

M. DUBOST: The next one.

BOIX: This is the scene; in this picture we see on the right and left all the deportees in a row; on the left are the Spaniards, they are smaller. The man in the front with the beret is a criminal from Berlin by the name of Schultz, who was employed on these occasions. In the background you can see the man who is about to be hanged.

M. DUBOST: Next one. Who took these pictures?

BOIX: By the SS Oberscharführer Fritz Kornatz. He was killed by American troops in Holland in 1944. This man, a Russian prisoner of war, got a bullet in the head. They hanged him to make us think he was a suicide and had tried to hurl himself against the barbed wire.

The other picture shows some Dutch Jews. That was taken at Barracks C, the so-called quarantine barracks. The Jews were driven to hurl themselves against the barbed wire on the very day of their arrival because they realized that there was no hope to escape for them.

M. DUBOST: By whom were these pictures taken?

BOIX: At this time by the SS Oberscharführer Paul Ricken, a professor from Essen.

M. DUBOST: Next one.

BOIX: These are 2 Dutch Jews. You can see the red star they wore. That was an alleged attempt to escape (Fluchtversuch).

M. DUBOST: What was it in reality?

BOIX: The SS sent them to pick up stones near the barbed wires, and the SS guards at the second barbed wire fence fired on them, because they received a reward for every man they shot down.

The other picture shows a Jew in 1941 during the construction of the so-called Russian camp, which later became the sanitary camp, hanged with the cord which he used to keep up his trousers.

M. DUBOST: Was it suicide?

BOIX: It was alleged to be. It was a man who no longer had any hope of escape. He was driven to desperation by forced labor and torture.

M. DUBOST: What is this picture?

BOIX: A Jew whose nationality I do not know. He was put in a barrel of water until he could not stand it any longer. He was beaten to the point of death and then given 10 minutes in which to hang himself. He used his own belt to do it, for he knew what would happen to him otherwise.

M. DUBOST: Who took that picture?

BOIX: The SS Oberscharführer Paul Ricken.

M. DUBOST: And what is this picture?

BOIX: Here you see the Viennese police visiting the quarry. This was in June or July 1941. The two deportees whom you see here are two of my Spanish comrades.

M. DUBOST: What are they doing?

BOIX: They are showing the police how they had to raise the stones, because there were no other appliances for doing so.

M. DUBOST: Did you know any of the policemen who came?

BOIX: No, because they came only once. We had just time to have a look at them.

The date of this picture is September 1943, on the birthday of Obersturmbannführer Franz Ziereis. He is surrounded by the whole staff of Mauthausen Camp. I can give you the names of all the people in the picture.

M. DUBOST: Pass the next photo.

BOIX: This is a picture taken on the same day as Obersturmbannführer Franz Ziereis’s birthday. The other man was his adjutant. I forgot his name. It must be remembered that this adjutant was a member of the Wehrmacht and put on an SS uniform as soon as he came to the camp.

M. DUBOST: Who is that?

BOIX: That is the same visit to Mauthausen by police officials in June or July 1941. This is the kitchen door. The prisoners standing there had been sent to the disciplinary company. They used that little appliance on their backs for carrying stones up to a weight of 80 kilos, until they were exhausted. Very few men ever came back from the disciplinary company.

This picture shows Himmler’s visit to the Führerheim at Camp Mauthausen in April 1941. It shows Himmler with the Governor of Linz in the background and Obersturmbannführer Ziereis, the commanding officer of Camp Mauthausen, on his left.

This picture was taken in the quarry. In the rear, to the left, you see a group of deportees at work. In the foreground are Franz Ziereis, Himmler, and Obergruppenführer Kaltenbrunner. He is wearing the gold Party emblem.

M. DUBOST: This picture was taken in the quarry? By whom?

BOIX: By the SS Oberscharführer Paul Ricken. This was between April and May 1941. This gentleman frequently visited the camp at that period to see how similar camps could be organized throughout Germany and in the occupied countries.

M. DUBOST: I have finished. You give us your assurance that it is really Kaltenbrunner.

BOIX: I give you my assurance.

M. DUBOST: And that this picture was taken in the camp?

BOIX: I give you my assurance.

M. DUBOST: Were you taken to Mauthausen as a prisoner of war or as a political prisoner?

BOIX: As a prisoner of war.

M. DUBOST: You had fought as a volunteer in the French Army?

BOIX: Either in infantry battalions or in the Foreign Legion, or in the pioneer regiments attached to the Army to which I belonged. I was in the Vosges with the 5th Army. We were taken prisoners. We retreated as far as Belfort where I was taken prisoner in the night of 20-21 June 1940. I was put with some fellow Spaniards and transferred to Mulhouse. Knowing us to be former Spanish Republicans and anti-fascists, they put us in among the Jews as members of a lower order of humanity (Untermensch). We were prisoners of war for 6 months and then we learned that the Minister for Foreign Affairs had had an interview with Hitler to discuss the question of foreigners and other matters. We knew that our status had been among the questions raised. We heard that the Germans had asked what was to be done with Spanish prisoners of war who had served in the French Army, those of them who were Republicans and ex-members of the Republican Army. The answer . . .

M. DUBOST: Never mind that. So although you were a prisoner of war you were sent to a camp not under Army control?

BOIX: Exactly. We were prisoners of war. We were told that we were being transferred to a subordinate Kommando, like all the other Frenchmen. Then we were transferred to Mauthausen where, for the first time, we saw that there were no Wehrmacht soldiers and we realized that we were in an extermination camp.

M. DUBOST: How many of you arrived there?

BOIX: At the end we were 1,500; altogether 8,000 Spaniards at the time of our arrival.

M. DUBOST: How many of you were liberated?

BOIX: Approximately 1,600.

M. DUBOST: I have no more questions to ask.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you want to ask any questions?

GEN. RUDENKO: I shall have some questions. If the President will permit me I shall present them in tomorrow’s session.

THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.

[The Tribunal adjourned until 29 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Tuesday, 29 January 1946

Morning Session

MARSHAL: May it please the Court, I desire now to say that the Defendant Kaltenbrunner will be absent from this morning’s session on account of illness.

M. DUBOST: In my capacity as representative of the French Prosecution, I wish to ask the Tribunal to consider this request. The witnesses that were interrogated yesterday are to be cross-examined by the Defense. The conditions under which they are here are rather precarious, for it takes 30 hours to return to Paris. We would like to know whether we are to keep them here; and, if the Defense really intends to cross-examine them, we should like to proceed with that as quickly as possible in order to ensure their return to France.

THE PRESIDENT: In view of what you said yesterday, M. Dubost, I said on behalf of the Tribunal that Herr Babel might have the opportunity of cross-examining one of your witnesses within the next two days. Is Herr Babel ready to cross-examine that witness now?

HERR BABEL: No, Mr. President, I have not yet received a copy of his interrogation and consequently have not been able to prepare my cross-examination. The time from yesterday to today is, naturally, also too short. Therefore, I cannot yet make a definite statement whether or not I shall want to cross-examine the witness. If I were given an opportunity during the course of the day to get the Record. . . .

THE PRESIDENT: [Interposing] Well, that witness must stay until tomorrow afternoon, M. Dubost, but the other witnesses can go. M. Dubost, will you see, if you can, that a copy of the shorthand notes is furnished to Herr Babel as soon as possible?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Mr. President.

[The witness, Boix, took the stand.]

I shall have it done, My Lord. We continue. The Tribunal will remember that yesterday afternoon we projected six photographs of Mauthausen which were brought to us by the witness who is now before you and on which he offered his comments. This witness specifically stated under what conditions the photograph representing Kaltenbrunner in the quarry of Mauthausen had been taken. We offer these photographs as a French document, Exhibit Number RF-332.

Will you allow me to formulate one more question to the witness? Then I shall be through with him, at least concerning the important part of this testimony.

Witness, do you recognize among the defendants anyone who visited the camp of Mauthausen during your internment there?

BOIX: Speer.

M. DUBOST: When did you see him?

BOIX: He came to the Gusen Camp in 1943 to arrange for some constructions and also to the quarry at Mauthausen. I did not see him myself as I was in the identification service of the camp and could not leave, but during these visits Paul Ricken, head of the identification department, took a roll of film with his Leica which I developed. On this film I recognized Speer and some leaders of the SS as well, who came with him. Speer wore a light-colored suit.

M. DUBOST: You saw that on the pictures that you developed?

BOIX: Yes. I recognized him on the photos and afterward we had to write his name and the date because many SS always wanted to have collections of all the photos of visits to the camp.

I recognized Speer on 36 photographs which were taken by SS Oberscharführer Paul Ricken in 1943, during Speer’s visit to the Gusen Camp and the quarry of Mauthausen. He always looked extremely pleased in these pictures. There are even pictures which show him congratulating Obersturmbannführer Franz Ziereis, then commander of the Mauthausen Camp, with a cordial handshake.

M. DUBOST: One last question. Were there any officiating chaplains in your camp? How did the internees who wanted religious consolation die?

BOIX: Yes, from what I could observe, there were several. There was an order of German Catholics, known as “Bibelforscher,” but officially . . .

M. DUBOST: But officially did the administration of the camp grant the internees the right to practice their religion?

BOIX: No, they could do nothing, they were absolutely forbidden even to live.

M. DUBOST: Even to live?

BOIX: Even to live.

M. DUBOST: Were there any Catholic chaplains or any Protestant pastors?

BOIX: That sort of Bibelforscher were almost all Protestants. I do not know much about this matter.

M. DUBOST: How were monks, priests, and pastors treated?

BOIX: There was no difference between them and ourselves. They died in the same way we did. Sometimes they were sent to the gas chamber, at times they were shot, or plunged in freezing water; any way was good enough. The SS had a particularly harsh method of handling these people, because they knew that they were not able to work as normal laborers. They treated all intellectuals of all countries in this manner.

M. DUBOST: They were not allowed to exercise their functions?

BOIX: No, not at all.

M. DUBOST: Did the men who died have a chaplain before being executed?

BOIX: No, not at all. On the contrary, at times, instead of being consoled, as you say, by anyone of their faith, they received, just before being shot, 25 or 75 lash with a leather thong even from an SS Obersturmbannführer personally. I noticed especially the cases of a few officers, political commissars, and Russian prisoners of war.

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions to ask of the witness.

THE PRESIDENT: General Rudenko?

GEN. RUDENKO: Witness, please tell us what you know about the extermination of Soviet prisoners.

BOIX: I cannot possibly tell you all I know about it; I know so much that one month would not suffice to tell you all about it.

GEN. RUDENKO: Then I would like to ask you, Witness, to tell us concisely what you know about the extermination of Soviet prisoners in the camp of Mauthausen.

BOIX: The arrival of the first prisoners of war took place in 1941. The arrival of 2,000 Russian prisoners of war was announced. With regard to Russian prisoners of war, they took the same precautions as in the case of the Republican Spanish prisoners of war. They put machine guns everywhere around the barracks and expected the worst. As soon as the Russian prisoners of war entered the camp one could see that they were in a very bad state, they could not even understand anything. They were human scarecrows. They were then put in barracks, 1,600 to a barracks. You must bear in mind these barracks were 7 meters wide by 50 long. They were divested of their clothes, of the very little they had with them; they could keep only one pair of drawers and one shirt. One has to remember that this was in November and in Mauthausen it was more than 10 degrees (centigrade) below zero.

Upon their arrival there were already 20 deaths, from walking only the distance of 4 kilometers between the station and camp of Mauthausen. At first the same system was applied to them as to us Republican Spanish prisoners. They left us with nothing to do, with no work.

They were left to themselves, but with scarcely anything to eat. At the end of a few weeks they were already at the end of their endurance. Then began the process of elimination. They were made to work under the most horrible conditions, they were beaten, hit, kicked, insulted; and out of the 7,000 Russian prisoners of war who came from almost everywhere, only 30 survivors were left at the end of three months. Of these 30 survivors photographs were taken by Paul Ricken’s department as a document. I have these pictures and I can show them if the Tribunal so wishes.

GEN. RUDENKO: You do have these pictures?

BOIX: M. Dubost knows about that, yes. M. Dubost has them.

GEN. RUDENKO: Thank you. Can you show these pictures?

BOIX: M. Dubost has them.

GEN. RUDENKO: Thank you. What do you know about the Yugoslavs and the Poles?

BOIX: The first Poles came to the camp in 1939 at the moment of the defeat of Poland. They received the same treatment as everybody else did. At that time there were only ordinary German bandits there. Then the work of extermination was begun. There were tens of thousands of Poles who died under frightful conditions.

The position of the Yugoslavs should be emphasized. The Yugoslavs began to arrive in convoys, wearing civilian clothes; and they were shot in a legal way, so to speak. The SS wore even their steel helmets for these executions. They shot them two at a time. The first transport brought 165, the second 180, and after that they came in small groups of 15, 50, 60, 30; and even women came then.

It should be noted that once, among four women who were shot—and that was the only time in the camp of deportees—some of them spat in the face of the camp Führer before dying. The Yugoslavs suffered as few people have suffered. Their position is comparable only to that of the Russians. Until the very end they were massacred by every means imaginable. I would like to say more about the Russians, because they have gone through so much . . .

GEN. RUDENKO: Do I understand correctly from your testimony that the concentration camp was really an extermination camp?

BOIX: The camp was placed in the last category, category 3; that is, it was a camp from which no one could come out.

GEN. RUDENKO: I have no further questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Does Counsel for Great Britain desire to cross-examine?

COLONEL H. J. PHILLIMORE (Junior Counsel for United Kingdom): No questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Counsel for the United States?

MR. THOMAS J. DODD (Executive Trial Counsel for the United States): No questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Do any counsel for the defendants wish to cross-examine?

HERR BABEL: Witness, how were you marked in the camp?

BOIX: The number? What kind of brand?

HERR BABEL: The prisoners were marked by variously colored stars, red, green, yellow, and so forth. Was this so in Mauthausen also? What did you wear?

BOIX: Everybody wore insignia. They were not stars; they were triangles and letters to show the nationality. Yellow and red stars were for the Jews, stars with six red and yellow points, two triangles, one over the other.

HERR BABEL: What color did you wear?

BOIX: A blue triangle with an “S” in it, that is to say “Spanish political refugee.”

HERR BABEL: Were you a Kapo?

BOIX: No, I was an interpreter at first.

HERR BABEL: What were your tasks and duties there?

BOIX: I had to translate into Spanish all the barbaric things the Germans wished to tell the Spanish prisoners. Afterwards my work was with photography, developing the films which were taken all over the camp showing the full story of what happened in the camp.

HERR BABEL: What was the policy with regard to visitors? Did visitors go only into the inner camp or to places where work was being done?

BOIX: They visited all the camps. It was impossible for them not to know what was going on. Exception was made only when high officials or other important persons from Poland, Austria, or Slovakia, from all these countries, would come. Then they would show them only the best parts. Franz Ziereis would say, “See for yourselves.” He searched out cooks, interned bandits, fat and well-fed criminals. He would select these so as to be able to say that all internees looked like these.

HERR BABEL: Were the prisoners forbidden to communicate with each other concerning conditions in the camp? Communication with the outside was, of course, scarcely possible.

BOIX: It was so completely forbidden that, if anyone was caught at it, it meant not only his death but for all those of his nationality terrible reprisals.

HERR BABEL: What observations can you make regarding the Kapos? How did they behave toward your fellow internees?

BOIX: At times they were really worthy of being SS themselves. To be a Kapo, one had to be Aryan, pure Aryan. That means that they had a martial bearing and, like the SS, full rights over us; they had the right to treat us like beasts. The SS gave them carte blanche to do with us what they wished. That is why, at the liberation, the prisoners and deportees executed all the Kapos on whom they could lay their hands.

Shortly before the liberation the Kapos asked to enlist voluntarily in the SS and they left with the SS because they knew what was awaiting them. In spite of that we looked for them everywhere and executed them on the spot.

HERR BABEL: You said “they had to treat you like wild beasts.” From what facts do you draw the conclusion that they were obliged to?

BOIX: One would have to be blind in order not to see. One could see the way they behaved. It was better to die like a man than to live like a beast; but they preferred to live like beasts, like savages, like criminals. They were known as such. I lived there four and a half years and I know very well what they did. There were many among us who could have become Kapos for their work, because they were specialists in some field or another in the camp. But they preferred to be beaten and massacred, if necessary, rather than become a Kapo.

HERR BABEL: Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other member of the defendants’ counsel wish to ask questions of the witness? M. Dubost, do you wish to ask any questions?

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions, Mr. President.


GEN. RUDENKO: My Lord, the witness informed us that he had at his disposal the photographic documents of 30 Soviet prisoners of war, the sole survivors of several thousand internees in this camp. I would like to ask your permission, Mr. President, to present this photographic document to the witness so that he can confirm before the Tribunal that it is really this group of Soviet prisoners of war.

THE PRESIDENT: Certainly you may show the photograph to the witness if it is available.

GEN. RUDENKO: Yes. Witness, can you show this picture?

[The witness presented the picture to the Tribunal.]

THE PRESIDENT: Is this the photograph?

BOIX: Yes, I can assure you that these 30 survivors were still living in 1942. Since then, in view of the conditions of the camp, it is very difficult to know whether some of them are still alive.

THE PRESIDENT: Would you please give the date when this photograph was taken?

BOIX: It was at the end of the winter of 1941-42. At that time, it was still 10 degrees (centigrade) below zero. You can see from the picture the appearance of the prisoners because of the cold.

THE PRESIDENT: Has this book been put in evidence yet?

M. DUBOST: This book has been submitted as evidence, Your Honor, as official evidence.

THE PRESIDENT: Have the defendants got copies of it?

M. DUBOST: It was submitted as Exhibit Number RF-331 (Document F-321). The Defense have also received a copy of this book in German, but the pictures are not in the German version, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDENT: Well then, let this photograph be marked. It had better be marked with a French exhibit number, I think. What will it be?

M. DUBOST: We shall give it Exhibit Number RF-333.

THE PRESIDENT: Let it be marked in that way, and then hand it to Herr Babel.

GEN. RUDENKO: Thank you, Sir. I have no more questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you hand the photo to Dr. Babel.

[The photo was handed to Herr Babel.]

I think it should be handed about to the other defendants’ counsel in case they wish to ask any question about it. M. Dubost, I think that an approved copy of this book, including the photographs, has been deposited in the defendants’ Information Center.

M. DUBOST: The whole book, except for the pictures.

THE PRESIDENT: Why not the pictures?

M. DUBOST: At that moment we did not have them to submit. In our exposé we have not mentioned the photographs.

THE PRESIDENT: The German counsel ought to have the same documents as are submitted to the Tribunal. The photographs have been submitted to the Tribunal; therefore they should have been deposited in the Information Center.

M. DUBOST: Mr. President, the French text, including the pictures, was deposited in the Defense Information Center; and, in addition, a certain number of texts in German, to which the pictures were not added because we had that translation prepared for the use of the Defense. But there are French copies of the book that you have before you which include the pictures.


M. DUBOST: We have here four copies of the picture which was shown yesterday afternoon, which we shall place before you. It shows Kaltenbrunner and Himmler in the quarry of Mauthausen, in accordance with the testimony given by Boix. One of these pictures will also be delivered to the Defense, that is, to the lawyer of the Defendant Kaltenbrunner.

THE PRESIDENT: Now the photograph has been handed around to the defendants’ counsel. Do any members of the defendants’ counsel wish to ask any questions of the witness about this photograph? No question? The witness can retire.

BOIX: I would like to say something more. I would like to note that there were cases when Soviet officers were massacred. It is worth noting because it concerns prisoners of war. I would like the Tribunal to listen to me carefully.

THE PRESIDENT: What is it you wish to say about the massacre of the Soviet prisoners of war?

BOIX: In 1943 there was a transport of officers. On the very day of their arrival in the camp they began to be massacred by every means. But it seems that from the higher quarters orders had come concerning these officers saying that something extraordinary had to be done. So they put them in the best block in the camp. They gave them new prisoner’s clothing. They gave them even cigarettes; they gave them beds with sheets; they were given everything they wanted to eat. A medical officer, Sturmbannführer Bresbach, examined them with a stethoscope.

They went down into the quarry, but they carried only small stones, and in fours. At that time Oberscharführer Paul Ricken, chief of the service, was there with his Leica taking pictures without stopping. He took about 48 pictures. These I developed and five copies of each, 13 by 18, with the negatives, were sent to Berlin. It is too bad I did not steal the negatives, as I did the others.

When that was done, the Russians were made to give up their clothing and everything else and were sent to the gas chamber. The comedy was ended. Everybody could see on the pictures that the Russian prisoners of war, the officers, and especially the political commissars, were treated well, worked hardly at all, and were in good condition. That is one thing that should be noted because I think it is necessary.

And another thing, there was a barrack called Barrack Number 20. That barrack was inside the camp; and in spite of the electrified barbed wire around the camp, there was an additional wall with electrified barbed wire around it. In that barrack there were prisoners of war, Russian officers and commissars, some Slavs, a few Frenchmen, and, they said, even a few Englishmen. No one could enter that barrack except the two Führer who were in the camp prison, the commanding officers of the inner and outer camps. These internees were dressed just as we were, like convicts, but without number or identification of their nationality. One could not tell their nationality.

The service “Erkennungsdienst” must have taken their pictures. A tag with a number was placed on their chest. This number began with 3,000 and something. There were numbers looking like Number 11 (two blue darts), and the numbers started at 3,000 and went up to 7,000. SS Unterscharführer Hermann Schinlauer was the photographer then in charge. He was from the Berlin region, somewhere outside of Berlin, I do not remember the name. He had orders to develop the films and to do all work personally; but like all the SS of the interior services of the camp, they were men who knew nothing. They always needed prisoners to get their work done. That is why he needed me to develop these films. I made the enlargements, 5 by 7. These were sent to Obersturmführer Karl Schulz, of Cologne, the Chief of the Politische Abteilung. He told me not to tell anything to anybody about these pictures and about the fact that we developed these films; if we did we would be liquidated at once. Without any fear of the consequences I told all my comrades about it, so that, if one of us should succeed in getting out, he could tell the world about it.

THE PRESIDENT: I think we have heard enough of this detail that you are giving us. But come back for a moment to the case you were speaking of. I wish you would repeat the case of the Russian prisoners of war in 1943. You said that the officers were taken to the quarry to carry the heaviest stones.

BOIX: No, just very small stones, weighing not even 20 kilos, and they carried them in fours to show on the pictures that the Russian officers did not do heavy work but on the contrary, light work. That was only for the pictures, whereas in reality it was entirely different.

THE PRESIDENT: I thought you said they carried big, heavy stones.


THE PRESIDENT: Were the photographs taken while they were in their uniforms carrying these light stones?

BOIX: Yes, Sir; they had to put on clean uniforms, neatly arranged, to show that the Russian prisoners were well and properly treated.

THE PRESIDENT: Very well. Is there any other particular incident you want to refer to?

BOIX: Yes, about Block 20. Thanks to my knowledge of photography I was able to see it; I had to be there to handle the lights while my chief took photographs. In this way I could follow, detail by detail, everything that took place in this barrack. It was an inner camp. This barrack, like all the others, was 7 meters wide and 50 meters long. There were 1,800 internees there, with a food ration less than one-quarter of what we would get for food. They had neither spoons nor plates. Large kettles of spoiled food were emptied on the snow and left there until it began to freeze; then the Russians were ordered to get at it. The Russians were so hungry, they would fight for this food. The SS used these fights as a pretext to beat some of them with bludgeons.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you mean that the Russians were put directly into Block 20?

BOIX: The Russians did not come to the camp directly. Those who were not sent to the gas chamber right away were placed in Block 20. Nobody of the inner camp, not even the Blockführer, was allowed to enter this barrack. Small convoys of 50 or 60 came several times a week and always one heard the noise of a fight going on inside.

In January 1945, when the Russians learned that the Soviet Armies were approaching Yugoslavia, they took one last chance. They seized fire extinguishers and killed soldiers posted under the watch tower. They seized machine guns and everything possible as weapons. They took blankets with them and everything they could find. They were 700, but only 62 succeeded in passing into Yugoslavia with the partisans.

That day, Franz Ziereis, camp commander, issued an order by radio to all civilians to co-operate, to “liquidate” the Russian criminals who had escaped from the concentration camp. He stated that everyone who could produce evidence that he had killed one of these men would receive an extraordinary sum of marks. This was why all the Nazi followers in Mauthausen went to work and succeeded in killing more than 600 escaped prisoners. It was not hard because some of the Russians could not drag themselves for more than 10 meters.

After the liberation one of the surviving Russians came to Mauthausen to see how everything was then. He told us all the details of his painful march.

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t think the Tribunal wants to hear more details which you did not see yourself. Does any member of the Defense Counsel wish to ask any question of the witness upon the points which he has dealt with himself.

HERR BABEL: One question only. In the course of your testimony you gave certain figures, namely 165, then 180, and just now 700. Were you in a position to count them yourself?

BOIX: Nearly always the convoys came into the camp in columns of five. It was easy to count them. These transports were always sent from the Wehrmacht, from the Wehrmacht prisons somewhere in Germany. They were sent from all prisons in Germany, from the Wehrmacht, the Luftwaffe, the SD, or the SS.

THE PRESIDENT: Just answer the question and do not make a speech. You have said they were brought in in columns of five and it was easy to count them.

BOIX: Very easy to count them, particularly for those who wanted to be able to tell the story some day.

HERR BABEL: Did you have so much time that you were able to observe all these things?

BOIX: The transports always came in the evening after the deportees had returned to the camp. At this time we always had two or three hours when we could wander about in the camp waiting for the bell that was the signal for us to go to bed.

THE PRESIDENT: The witness may now retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal permits, we shall now hear Mr. Cappelen, who is a Norwegian witness. The testimony of Mr. Cappelen will be limited to the conditions that were imposed on Norwegian internees in Norwegian camps and prisons.


[The witness, Hans Cappelen, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: I understand that you speak English.

M. HANS CAPPELEN (Witness): Yes, I speak English.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you take the English form of oath?

CAPPELEN: Yes, I prefer to speak in English.

THE PRESIDENT: What is your name?

CAPPELEN: My name is Hans Cappelen.

THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me:

I swear that the evidence I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God.

[The witness repeated the oath in English.]

THE PRESIDENT: [To the witness.] Raise your right hand and say “I swear.”

CAPPELEN: I swear.

M. DUBOST: M. Cappelen, you were born 18 December 1903?


M. DUBOST: In what town?

CAPPELEN: I was born in Kvitseid, province of Telemark, Norway.

M. DUBOST: What is your profession?

CAPPELEN: I was a lawyer, but now I am a business man.

M. DUBOST: Will you tell what you know of the atrocities of the Gestapo in Norway?

CAPPELEN: My Lord, I was arrested on 29 November 1941 and taken to the Gestapo prison in Oslo, Moellergata 19. After 10 days I was interrogated by two Norwegian NS, or Nazi police agents. They started in at once to beat me with bludgeons. How long this interrogation lasted I cannot remember, but it led to nothing. So after some days I was brought to 32 Victoria Terrace. That was the headquarters of the Gestapo in Norway. It was about 8 o’clock at night. I was brought into a fairly big room and they asked me to undress. I had to undress until I was absolutely naked. I was a little bit swollen after the first treatment I had by the Norwegian police agents, but it was not too bad.

There were present about six or eight Gestapo agents and their leader was Femer; Kriminalrat was his title. He was very angry and they started to bombard me with questions which I could not answer. So Femer ran at me and tore all the hair off my head, hair and blood were all over the floor around me. And so, all of a sudden, they all started to run at me and beat me with rubber bludgeons and iron cable-ends. That hurt me very badly and I fainted. But I was brought back to life again by their pouring ice water over me. I vomited, naturally, because I was feeling very sick. But that only made them angry; and they said, “Clean up, you dirty dog!” And I had to make an attempt to clean up with my bare hands.

In this way they carried on for a long, long time, but the interrogation led to nothing because they bombarded me with questions and asked me of persons whom I did not know or scarcely knew.

I suppose it must have been in the morning I was brought back again to the prison. I was placed in my cell and felt very sick and weak. All during the day I asked the guard if I could not have a doctor; that was the 19th. After some days—I suppose it must have been the day before Christmas Eve 1941—I was again, in the night, brought to the Victoria Terrace. The same happened as last time, only this time it was very easy for me to undress because I had only a coat on me. I was swollen up from the last beating. Just like the last time, six, seven, or eight Gestapo agents were present.

THE PRESIDENT: German Gestapo, do you mean?

CAPPELEN: Yes, German Gestapo, all of them. And then there was Femer present at that time, too. He had a rank in the SS and was criminal commissar. Then they started to beat me again, but it was useless to beat a man like me who was so swollen up and looking so bad. Then they started in another way, they started to screw and break my arms and legs. And my right arm was dislocated. I felt that awful pain, and fainted again. Then the same happened as last time; they poured water on me and I came back again to life.

Now all the Germans there were absolutely mad. They roared like animals and bombarded me with questions again, but I was so tired I could not answer.

Then they placed a sort of home-made—it looked to me like a sort of home-made—wooden thing, with a screw arrangement, on my left leg; and they started to screw so that all the flesh loosened from the bones. I felt an awful pain and fainted away again. But I came back to consciousness again; and I have still big marks here on my leg from the screw arrangement, now, four years afterwards.

So that led to nothing and then they placed something on my neck—I still have marks here [indicating]—and loosened the flesh here. But then I had a collapse and all of a sudden I felt that I was sort of paralyzed in the right side. It has otherwise been proved that I had a cerebral hemorrhage. And I got that double vision; I saw two of each Gestapo agent, and all was going round and round for me. That double vision I have had 4 years, and when I am tired it comes back again. But I am better now, so I can move again on the right side; but the right side is a little bit affected from that.

Well, I cannot remember much more from that night, but the other prisoners who had to clean up the corridors in the prison had seen them bringing me back again in the morning. That must have been about 6 o’clock in the morning. They thought I was dead because I had no irons on my hands. If it had been for 1 day or 2 days, I can’t tell, but one day I moved again and was a little bit clear; and then the guard at once was in my cell where I was lying on a cot in my own vomiting and blood, and afterwards there came a doctor.

He had, I suppose, quite a high rank; which rank I can’t exactly say. He told me that I most probably would die, especially if I wasn’t—I asked him, “Couldn’t you bring me to a hospital, because . . .” He said, “No. Fools are not to be brought to any hospital, before you do just what we say you shall do. Like all Norwegians, you are a fool.”

Well, they put my arm into joint again. That was very bad, but two soldiers held me and they drew it in, and I fainted away again. So the time passed and I rested a bit. I couldn’t walk, because it all seemed to be going around for me. So I was lying on the cot. And so one day—it must have been in the end of February or in the middle of February 1942—they came again. It must have been about ten o’clock in the night, because the light in my cell had been out for quite a long time. They asked me to stand up, and I made an attempt, and fell down again because of the paralysis. Then they kicked me; but I said, “Is not it better to put me to death, because I can’t move?”

Well, they dragged me out of the cell, and I was again brought up to Victoria Terrace; that is the headquarters where they made their interrogations. This time the interrogation was led by one SS man called Stehr. I could not stand so, naked as I was, I was lying on the floor. This Stehr had some assistants, four or five Gestapo agents; and they started to tramp on me and to kick me. So all of a sudden they brought me to my feet again and brought me to a table where Stehr was sitting. He took my left hand like this [indicating] and put some pins under my nails and started to break them up. Well, it hurt me badly; and all things began going around and around for me—the double vision—but the pain was so intense that I drew my hand back. I should not have done that, because that made them absolutely furious. I fainted away, collapsed, and I do not know for how long a time; but I came back to life again by the smelling of burned flesh or burned meat. And then one of the Gestapo agents was standing with a little sort of lamp burning me under my feet. It did not hurt me too much, because I was so feeble that I did not care; and I was so paralyzed my tongue could not work, so I could not speak, only groaned a bit, crying, naturally, always.

Well, I don’t remember much more of that time, but this was to me one of the worst things I went through with respect to interrogations. I was brought back again to the prison and time passed and I attempted to eat a little bit. I spewed most of it up again, I threw it up again, most of it. But little by little I recovered. I was still paralyzed in the side, so I couldn’t stand up.

But I was also taken into interrogations again, and then I was confronted with other Norwegians, people I knew and people I did not know; and the most of them were badly treated. They were swollen up, and I remember especially two of my friends, two very good persons. I had been confronted with them, and they were looking very bad from torture, and when I came back again after my imprisonment I learned that they both were dead; they had died from the treatment.

Another incident which I aim to tell—I hope My Lord will permit me to do it—concerned a person called Sverre Emil Halvorsen. He was one day—that must have been in the autumn or in August or October 1943—a little bit swollen up and very unhappy; and he said they had treated him so bad, but he and some of his friends had been in some sort of a court where they had been told that they were to be shot the next day. They placed a sort of sentence upon them, just to set an example.

Well, Halvorsen had, naturally, a headache and felt very ill, and I asked the guard to bring—the head guard, that was a person named Herr Götz. He came and asked what the devil I wanted. I said, “My comrade is very ill, could not he have some aspirins?” “Oh no,” he said, “it is a waste to give him aspirin, because he is to be shot in the morning.”

Next morning he was brought out of the cell, and after the war they found him up at Trondheim together with other Norwegians in a grave there with a bullet through his neck.

Well, the Moellergate 19, in Oslo, the prison where I was for about 25 months, was a house of horror. I heard every night—nearly every night—people screaming and groaning. One day, it must have been in December 1943, about the 8th of December, they came into my cell and told me to dress. It was in the night. I put on my ragged clothes, what I had. Now I had recovered, practically. I was naturally lame on the one side, could not walk so well, but I could walk; and I went down in the corridor and there they placed me as usual against the wall, and I waited that they would bring me away and shoot me. But they did not shoot me; they brought me to Germany together with lots of other Norwegians. I learned afterwards about some few of my friends—and by friends, I mean Norwegians. We were so-called “Nacht und Nebel” prisoners, “Night and Mist” prisoners. We were brought to a camp called Natzweiler, in Alsace. It was a very bad camp, I must say.

We had to work to take stones out of the mountains. But I shall not bore you about my tales from Natzweiler, My Lord, I will only say that people of all other nations—French, Russians, Dutch, and Belgians—were there and we are about five hundred Norwegians who have been there. Between 60 and 70 percent died there or in other camps of concentration. Also, two Danes were there.

Well, we saw many cruel things there, so cruel that they need—they are well known. The camp had to be evacuated in September 1944. We were then brought to Dachau near Munich, but we did not stay long there; at least, I didn’t stay long there. I was sent to a Kommando called Aurich in East Friesland, where we were about—that was an under-Kommando of Neuengamme, near Hamburg. We were about fifteen hundred prisoners. We had to dig tank traps. Well, we had to walk every day about 3 or 4 hours, and go by train for 1 hour to the Panzer Gräben where we worked. The work was so strong and so hard and the way they treated us so bad, that most of them died there. I suppose about half of the prisoners died of dysentery or of ill-treatment in the five or six weeks we were there. It was too much even for the SS, who had to take care of the camp, so they gave it up, I suppose; and I was sent from Neuengamme, near Hamburg, to a camp called Gross-Rosen, in Silesia; it is near Breslau. That was a very bad camp, too. We were about 40 Norwegians there; and of those 40 Norwegians we were about 10 left after 4 to 5 weeks.

THE PRESIDENT: You will be some little time longer, so I think we better adjourn now for 10 minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

M. DUBOST: M. Cappelen, will you continue to speak to us of your passage through those camps, particularly of what you know of the camp of Natzweiler and the role at Natzweiler of Dr. Hirt, Hirch, or Hirtz of the German medical faculty of Strasbourg?

CAPPELEN: Well, in Natzweiler, yes, there were also carried on experiments. Just beside the camp there was a farm they called Struthof. That was practically a part of the camp; and some of the prisoners had to work there to clean up the rooms; and—well not so often, but sometimes—they were taken out. For instance, one day, I remember, all the Gypsies were taken out, and then they were brought down to Struthof. They were very afraid of being brought down there.

Well, one friend of mine, a Norwegian called Hvidding, who had a job in the hospital—so-called hospital—in the camp, told me the day after the Gypsies were taken and brought to Struthof, “I tell you something. They have, so far as I understand, tried some sort of gas on them.”

“How do you know that?” I asked.

“Well, come along with me.”

And then, through the window of the hospital, I could see four of the Gypsies lying in beds. They did not look well, and it was not easy to look through the glass, but they had some mucus, I suppose, around their mouths. And he told me that they had—Hvidding told me—that the Gypsies could not tell much because they were so ill, but so far as he understood, it was gas which they had used upon them. There had been 12 of them, and 4 were living; the other 8, so far as he understood, died down there at Struthof. Then he told further on, “You see that man who sometimes walks through the camp together with some others?”

“Well, I have seen him,” I said.

“That is Professor Hirtz from the German University in Strasbourg.”

I am quite sure Hvidding said that this man is Hirt or Hirtz. He is coming here now nearly daily with a so-called commission to see those who are coming back again from Struthof, to see the result. That is all I know about that so far.

M. DUBOST: How many Norwegians died at Gross-Rosen?

CAPPELEN: In Gross-Rosen, it is not possible for me to say here exactly; but I know about 40 persons who had been there, and I also know about ten who came back again. Well, Gross-Rosen was a bad camp. But nearly the worst of it all was the evacuation of Gross-Rosen. I suppose it must have been in the middle of February of that year. The Russians came nearer and nearer to Breslau.

THE PRESIDENT: You mean 1945?

CAPPELEN: Yes, 1945 I mean. One day we were placed upon a so-called “Appellplatz” (roll call ground). We were very feeble, all of us. We had hard work, little food, and all sorts of ill-treatment. Well, we started to walk in parties of about 2,000 to 3,000. In the party I was with, we were about 2,500 to 2,800. We heard so and so many when they took up the numbers.

Well, we started to walk, and we had SS guards on each side. They were very nervous and almost like mad persons. Several were drunk. We couldn’t walk fast enough, and they smashed in the heads of five who could not keep up. They said in German, “That is what happens to those who cannot walk.” The others would have been treated in the same way if they had not been able to follow. We walked the best we could. We attempted to help one another, but we were all too exhausted. After walking for 6 to 8 hours we came to a station, a railway station. It was very cold and we had only striped prison clothes on, and bad boots; but we said, “Oh, we are glad that we have come to a railway station. It is better to stand in a cow truck than to walk, in the middle of winter.” It was very cold, 10 to 12 degrees below zero (centigrade). It was a long train with open cars. In Norway we call them sand cars, and we were kicked on to those cars, about 80 on each car. We had to sit together and on this car we sat for about 5 days without food, cold, and without water. When it was snowing we made like this [indicating] just to get some water into the mouth and, after a long, long time—it seemed to me years—we came to a place which I afterwards learned was Dora. That is in the neighborhood of Buchenwald.

Well, we arrived there. They kicked us down from the cars, but many were dead. The man who sat next to me was dead, but I had no right to get away. I had to sit with a dead man for the last day. I didn’t see the figures myself, naturally, but about one-third of us or half of us were dead, getting stiff. And they told us that one-third—I heard the figure afterwards in Dora—that the dead on our train numbered 1,447.

Well, from Dora I don’t remember so much, because I was more or less dead. I have always been a man of good humor and high spirited, to help myself first and my friends; but I had nearly given up.

I do not remember so much before, so I had a good chance, because Bernadotte’s action came and we were rescued and brought to Neuengamme, near Hamburg; and when we arrived, there were some of my old friends, the student from Norway who had been deported to Germany, other prisoners who came from Sachsenhausen and other camps, and the few, comparatively few, Norwegian “NN” prisoners who were living, all in very bad condition. Many of my friends are still in the hospital in Norway. Some died after coming home.

That’s what happened to me and my comrades in the three and three-quarter years I was in prison. I am fully aware that it is impossible for me to give details more than I have done; but I have taken, so to say, the parts of it which show, I hope, the way they behaved against Norwegians, and in Norway, the German SS.

M. DUBOST: For what reason were you arrested?

CAPPELEN: I was arrested the 29th of November 1941, in a place called then Hoistly. That is a sort of sanitarium where one goes skiing.

M. DUBOST: What had you done? What was held against you?

CAPPELEN: Well, what I had done. Like most of us Norwegians, we regarded ourselves to be at war with Germany in one way or another; and naturally we, most of us, were against them by feelings; and also, as the Gestapo asked me, I remember, “What do you think of Mr. Quisling?” I only answered, “What would you have done if a German officer—even a major—when your country was at war and your government had given an order of mobilization, he came and said, ‘Better forget the Mobilization Order?’ ” A man can’t do that with respect.

M. DUBOST: On the whole, did the German population know of, or were they unaware of, what went on in the camps?

CAPPELEN: That is, naturally, very difficult for me to answer. But in Norway, at least, even at the time when I was arrested, we knew quite a lot about how the Germans treated their prisoners.

And there is one thing I remember in Munich where I was working. I was not working; I was in Dachau for that short period. With some others, I was once brought to the town of Munich to go into the ruins to seek for persons and find bombs and things like that. I suppose that was the idea. They never told us anything, but we knew what was on. We were about one hundred persons, prisoners. We were looking like dead persons, all of us looking very bad. We went through the streets and people could see us; and they also could see what we were going to do, the sort of work which one should think was very dangerous and which should in some way help them; but it was no fun for them to see us. Some of them were hollering to us, “It is your fault that we are bombed.”

M. DUBOST: Were there any chaplains in your camp? Were you allowed to pray?

CAPPELEN: Well, we had among the “NN” prisoners in Natzweiler a priest from Norway. He was, I suppose, what you call in English a Dean. He was of quite high rank. In Norwegian we call it “Prost.” From the west coast of Norway. He was also brought to Natzweiler as an “NN” prisoner, and some of my comrades asked him if they could not meet sometimes so he could preach to them. But he said, “No, I don’t dare to do it. I had a Bible. They have taken it from me and they joked about it and said, ‘You dirty churchman, if you show the Bible and things like that . . .’ ” You know, therefore, we did not do anything in that way.

M. DUBOST: Those who were dying among you, did they have the consolation of their religion at the time of their death?


M. DUBOST: Were the dead treated with decency?


M. DUBOST: Was there any religious service conducted?


M. DUBOST: I have no further questions to ask.

THE PRESIDENT: Does counsel for the U.S.S.R. desire to cross-examine?

GEN. RUDENKO: I have no question, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Has the United States?

[No response.]

Then does any member of the defendants’ counsel wish to ask the witness any questions?

DR. MERKEL: Witness, at your first interrogations which as a rule took place about ten days after arrest, were you interrogated by German or by Norwegian Gestapo men?

CAPPELEN: It was made by two Norwegians who belonged to, as I learned afterward, the so-called State Police. That was not the police in Norway. They were working together with the Gestapo; in fact, it was the same. But it was by them I was interrogated after the 10 days. But they, as I heard afterwards, usually did it in that way, because it was easy to do it in Norwegian; and some of the Germans could not speak Norwegian. Most of them could not. I think it was, therefore, that they took the Norwegian; and you can call them Gestapo, practically. They let them handle the persons first.

DR. MERKEL: Then at the Victoria Terrace, which name I believe you used to designate the Gestapo headquarters in Oslo, were there Norwegian or German officials present during your interrogation?

CAPPELEN: I dare say there may have been one Norwegian as a sort of interpreter; but as I spoke the German language, I cannot, with 100 percent surety, say if there were one or two Norwegian policemen there. It is difficult. But as Victoria Terrace was the headquarters of the Gestapo, naturally they had some Norwegian Nazis to help them there. But most of them were German.

DR. MERKEL: Were the persons who interrogated you in uniform or in civilian clothes?

CAPPELEN: During my interrogation I have sometimes seen them in uniform, too. But when they tortured me they were mostly in civilian clothes. So far as I remember, there was only one person in uniform during one of the torture interrogations.

DR. MERKEL: You stated that you were then treated by a physician. Did this physician come of his own free will or was he asked to come?

CAPPELEN: The first time I asked for a doctor, but then I did not get any. But at the time when I came back to consciousness, when I was supposed perhaps to be dead, the guard possibly had been looking at me because he was then running away; and afterwards they came with a doctor.

DR. MERKEL: Did you know that in the German concentration camps there was an absolute prohibition against talking about the conditions in the camp—among the prisoners as well as to outsiders, of course—and that any violation of the order not to talk was subject to most severe penalties?

CAPPELEN: Well, in the camps it was like this: It was naturally more or less understood that it was more or less forbidden to talk about the tortures we had gone through; but naturally in the camps, the Nacht und Nebel Camps where I was, the situation was so bad that even torture sometimes seemed to be better than dying slowly away like that, so almost the only thing we spoke about was: “When shall the war end; how to help our comrades; and are we to get some food tonight or not?”

DR. MERKEL: Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other defendant’s counsel wish to ask any questions? Mr. Dubost, have you anything you wish to ask?

M. DUBOST: I have nothing further to ask, Mr. President. I thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness can retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal will permit, we will now hear a witness, Roser, who will give a few details on the conditions under which they kept French prisoners of war in reprisal camps.

[The witness, Paul Roser, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: What is your name?

M. PAUL ROSER (Witness): Roser, Paul.

THE PRESIDENT: You swear to speak without hate or fear, to state the truth, all the truth, only the truth? Raise the right hand and say “I swear.”

[The witness raised his right hand and repeated the oath in French.]

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.

M. DUBOST: Your name is Paul Roser, R-o-s-e-r?

ROSER: R-o-s-e-r.

M. DUBOST: You were born on the 8th of May 1903? You are of French nationality?

ROSER: I am French.

M. DUBOST: You were born of French parents?

ROSER: I was born of French parents.

M. DUBOST: You were a prisoner of war?


M. DUBOST: You were taken prisoner in battle?

ROSER: Yes, I was.

M. DUBOST: In what year?

ROSER: 14 June 1940.

M. DUBOST: You sought to escape?

ROSER: Yes, several times.

M. DUBOST: How many times?

ROSER: Five times.

M. DUBOST: Five times. You were transferred finally to a disciplinary camp?


M. DUBOST: Will you indicate the regime of such a camp? Will you indicate your rank, and the treatment which French people of your rank in those disciplinary camps had to submit to, and for what reasons?

ROSER: Very well, I was an “aspirant,” a rank which, in France, is between a first sergeant and a second lieutenant. I was in several disciplinary camps. The first was a small camp which the Germans called Strafkommando, in Linzburg in Hanover. It was in 1941. There were about thirty of us.

While I was in that camp during the summer of 1941, we attempted to escape. We were recaptured by our guards at the very moment when we were leaving the camp. We were naturally unarmed. The Germans, our guards, having recaptured one of us, attempted to make him reveal the others who also had sought to escape. The man remained silent. The guards hurled themselves upon him, beating him with the butts of their pistols in the face, with bayonets, with the butts of their rifles. At that moment, not wishing to let our comrade be killed, several of us stepped forward and revealed that we sought to escape. I then received a beating with bayonets applied to my head and fell into a swoon. When I recovered consciousness one of the Germans was kneeling on my leg and was continuing to strike me. Another one, raising his gun, was seeking to strike my head. I was saved on that occasion through the intervention of my comrades, who threw themselves between the Germans and myself. That night we were beaten for exactly 3 hours with rifle butts, with bayonet blows, and with pistol butts in the face. I lost consciousness three times.

The following day we were taken to work, nevertheless. We dug trenches for the draining of the marshes. It was a very hard sort of work, which started at 6:30 in the morning, to be completed at 6 o’clock at night. We had two stops, each of a half-hour. We had nothing to eat during the day. Soup was given to us, when we came back at night, with a piece of bread, a small sausage or 2 cubic centimeters of margarine, and that was all.

Following our attempted escape, our guards held back from us all the parcels which our families sent to us for a month. We could not write nor could we receive mail.

At the end of three and a half months, in September 1941, we were shipped to the regular Kommandos. I, personally, was quite ill at that time and I came back to Stalag X B at Sandbostel.

M. DUBOST: Why were you subjected to such a special regime, although you were an “aspirant”?

ROSER: Certainly because of my attempted escape.

M. DUBOST: Had you agreed to work?

ROSER: No, not at all. Like all my comrades of the same rank and like most of the noncommissioned officers and like all “aspirants,” I had refused to work, invoking the provision of the Geneva Convention, which Germany had signed and which prescribed that noncommissioned officers who were prisoners cannot be forced to perform any labor without their consent. The German Army, into whose hands we had fallen, practically speaking, never respected that agreement undertaken by Germany.

M. DUBOST: Are you familiar with executions that took place in Oflag XI B?

ROSER: I was made familiar with the death of several French or Allied prisoners, specifically at Oflag XI at Grossborn in Pomerania. A French prisoner, Lieutenant Robin, who with some of his comrades had prepared an escape and for that purpose had dug a tunnel, was killed in the following manner: The Germans having had information that the tunnel had been prepared, Hauptmann Buchmann, who was a member of the officer staff of the camp, watched with a few German guards for the exit of the would-be escapees. Lieutenant Robin, who was first to emerge, was killed with one shot while obviously he could in no manner attack anyone or defend himself.

Other cases of this type occurred. One of my friends, a French Lieutenant Ledoux, who was sent to Graudenz Fortress where he was subjected to a hard detention regime, saw his best friend, British Lieutenant Anthony Thomson, killed by Hauptfeldwebel Ostreich with one pistol shot in the neck, in their own cell. Lieutenant Thomson had just sought to escape and had been recaptured by the Germans on the airfield. Lieutenant Thomson belonged to the RAF.

I should like to state also that in the camp of Rawa-Ruska in Galicia, where I spent 5 months, several of our comrades . . .

M. DUBOST: Would you tell us why you were at Rawa-Ruska?

ROSER: In the course of the winter, 1941-42, the Germans wanted to intimidate, first, the noncommissioned officers who were refractory in labor; second, those who had sought to escape; and third, the men who were being employed in Kommandos (labor gangs) and who were caught in the act of performing sabotage. The Germans warned us that from 1 April 1942 onward all these escapees who were recaptured would be sent to a camp, a special camp called a Straflager, at Rawa-Ruska in Poland.

It was following another attempt to escape that I was taken to Poland with about two thousand other Frenchmen. I was at Limburg-an-der-Lahn, Stalag XII A, where we were regrouped and placed in railway cars. We were stripped of our clothes, of our shoes, of all the food which some of us had been able to keep. We were placed in cars, in each of which the number varied from 53 to 56. The trip lasted 6 days. The cars were open generally for a few minutes in the course of a stop in the countryside. In 6 days we were given soup on 2 occasions only, once at Oppel, and another time at Jaroslan, and the soup was not edible. We remained for 36 hours without anything to drink in the course of that trip, as we had no receptacle with us and it was impossible to get a supply of water.

When we reached Rawa-Ruska on 1 June 1942, we found other prisoners—most of them French, who had been there for several weeks—extremely discouraged, with a ration scale much inferior to anything that we had experienced until then, and no International Red Cross or family parcel for anyone.

At that time there were about twelve to thirteen thousand in that camp. There was for that number one single faucet which supplied, for several hours a day, undrinkable water. This situation lasted until the visit of two Swiss doctors, who came to the camp in September, I think. The billets consisted of 4 barracks, where rooms contained as many as 600 men. We were stacked in tiers along the walls, 3 rows of them, 30 to 40 centimeters for each of us.

During our stay in Rawa-Ruska there were many attempts at escape, more than five hundred in 6 months. Several of our comrades were killed. Some were killed at the time when a guard noticed them. In spite of the sadness of such occurrences, no one of us contested the rights of our guards in such cases, but several were murdered. In particular, on 12 August 1942, in the Tarnopol Kommando, a soldier, Lavesque, was found bearing evidence of several shots and several large wounds caused by bayonets.

On the 14th of August, in the Verciniec Kommando, 93 Frenchmen, having succeeded in digging a tunnel, escaped. The following morning three of them, Conan, Van den Boosch, and Poutrelle, were caught by German soldiers, who were searching for them. Two of them were sleeping; the third, Poutrelle, was not asleep. The Germans, a corporal and two enlisted men, verified the identity of the three Frenchmen. Very calmly they told them: “Now we are obliged to kill you.” The three wretched men spoke of their families, begged for mercy. The German corporal gave the following reply, which we heard only too often: “Befehl ist Befehl” (“An order is an order”); and they shot down immediately two of the French prisoners, Van den Boosch and Conan. Poutrelle was left like a madman and by sheer luck was not caught again. But he was captured a few days later in the region of Kraków. He was then brought back to Rawa-Ruska proper, where we saw him in a condition close to madness.

On the 14th of August, once again in the Stryj Kommando, a team of about twenty prisoners accompanied by several guards, were on their way to work . . . .

M. DUBOST: Excuse me, you are talking about French prisoners of war?

ROSER: Yes, French prisoners of war, so far.

Going along a wood, the German noncommissioned officer, who for some time had been annoying two of them, Pierrel and Ondiviella, directed them into the woods. A few moments later the others heard shots. Pierrel and Ondiviella had just been killed.

On 20 September 1942, at Stryj once again, a Kommando was at work under the supervision of German soldiers and German civilian foremen. One of the Frenchmen succeeded in escaping. Without waiting, the German noncommissioned officers selected two men, if my memory is correct, Saladin and Duboeuf, and shot them on the spot. Incidents of this type occurred in other circumstances. The list of them would be long indeed.

M. DUBOST: Can you speak of the conditions under which the refractory noncommissioned officers who were with you at camp at Rawa-Ruska lived?

ROSER: The noncommissioned officers who refused to work were grouped together in one section of the camp, in two of the large stables which served as billets. They were subjected to a regime of most severe repression; frequent roll calls for assembly; lying-down and standing-up exercise which after a while leaves one quite exhausted.

One day, Sergeant Corbihan, having refused Captain Fournier—a German captain with a French name—to take a tool to work with, the German captain made a motion and one of the German soldiers with him ran Corbihan through with his bayonet; Corbihan by miracle escaped death.

M. DUBOST: How many of you disappeared?

ROSER: At Rawa-Ruska, in the 5 months that I spent there, we buried 60 of our comrades who had died from disease or had been killed in attempted escapes. But so far, 100 of those who were with us and sought to escape have not been found.

M. DUBOST: Is this all that you have witnessed?

ROSER: No, I should say that our stay at the punishment camp, Rawa-Ruska, involved one thing more awful than anything else we prisoners saw and suffered. We were horrified by what we knew was taking place all about us. The Germans had transformed the area of Lvov-Rawa-Ruska into a kind of immense ghetto. Into that area, where the Jews were already quite numerous, had been brought the Jews from all the countries of Europe. Every day for 5 months, except for an interruption of about six weeks in August and September 1942, we saw passing about 150 meters from our camp, one, two, and sometimes three convoys, made up of freight cars in which there were crowded men, women and children. One day a voice coming from one of these cars shouted: “I am from Paris. We are on our way to the slaughter.” Quite frequently, comrades who went outside the camp to go to work found corpses along the railway track. We knew in a vague sort of way at that time that these trains stopped at Belcec, which was located about 17 kilometers from our camp; and at that point they executed these wretched people, by what means I do not know.

One night in July 1942 we heard shots of submachine guns throughout the entire night and the moans of women and children. The following morning bands of German soldiers were going through the fields of rye on the very edge of our camp, their bayonets pointed downward, seeking people hiding in the fields. Those of our comrades who went out that day to go to their work told us that they saw corpses everywhere in the town, in the gutters, in the barns, in the houses. Later some of our guards, who had participated in this operation, quite good-humoredly explained to us that 2,000 Jews had been killed that night under the pretext that two SS men had been murdered in the region.

Later on, in 1943, during the first week of June, there occurred a pogrom which in Lvov caused the death of 30,000 Jews. I was not personally in Lvov, but several French military doctors, Major Guiguet and Lieutenant Levin of the French Medical Corps, described this scene to me.

THE PRESIDENT: The witness appears to be not finishing and therefore I think we had better adjourn now until 2 o’clock.

[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]

Afternoon Session

MARSHAL: I desire to announce that the Defendant Kaltenbrunner will be absent from this afternoon’s session on account of illness.

M. DUBOST: With the permission of the Tribunal, we shall continue examining the witness, M. Roser.

M. Roser, this morning you finished the description of the conditions under which you witnessed the pogrom of Rawa-Ruska and you wanted to give us some details on another pogrom. You told us that a German soldier, who had taken a part in it, made a statement to you which you wanted to relate to us. Is that right?


M. DUBOST: We are listening to you.

ROSER: At the end of 1942 I was taken to Germany, and I, together with a French doctor, had the opportunity of meeting the chauffeur of the German physician who was head of the infirmary where I was at that time. This soldier, whose name I have forgotten, said to me as follows:

“In Poland, in a town the name of which I have forgotten, a sergeant from our regiment went with a Jewess. A few hours later he was found dead. Then”—said the German soldier—“my battalion was called out. Half of it cordoned off the ghetto, and the other half, two companies, to one of which I belonged, forced its way into the houses and threw out of the windows, pell-mell, the furniture and the inhabitants.”—The German soldier finished his story by saying—“Poor fellow! It was terrible, horrible!”—We asked him then—“How could you do such a thing?”—He gave us the fatalistic reply—“Orders are orders.”

This is the example which I previously mentioned.

M. DUBOST: If I remember rightly, when speaking of Rawa-Ruska you started describing the treatment of Russian prisoners who were in this camp before you.

ROSER: Yes. That is correct. The first French batch, which arrived in Rawa-Ruska the 14th or 15th of April 1942, followed a group of 400 Russian prisoners of war, who were the survivors of a detachment of 6,000 men decimated by typhus. The few medicines found by the French doctors upon arrival at Rawa-Ruska came from the infirmary of the Russian prisoners. There were a few aspirin tablets and other drugs; absolutely nothing against typhus. The camp had not been disinfected after the sick Russians had left.

I cannot speak here of these wretched Russian survivors of Rawa-Ruska, without asking the Tribunal for permission to describe the terrible picture we all—I mean all the French prisoners who were in the stalags of Germany in the autumn or winter of 1941—saw when the first batches of Russian prisoners arrived. It was on a Sunday afternoon that I watched this spectacle, which was like a nightmare. The Russians arrived in rows, five by five, holding each other by the arms, as none of them could walk by themselves—“walking skeletons” was really the only fitting expression. Since then we have seen photographs of those camps of deportation and death. Our unfortunate Russian comrades had been in that condition since 1941. The color of their faces was not even yellow, it was green. Almost all squinted, as they had not strength enough to focus their sight. They fell by rows, five men at a time. The Germans rushed on them and beat them with rifle butts and whips. As it was Sunday afternoon the prisoners were at liberty, inside the camp, of course. Seeing that, all the French started shouting and the Germans made us return to the barracks. Typhus spread immediately in the Russian camp, where, out of the 10,000 who had arrived in November, only 2,500 survived by the beginning of February.

These figures are accurate. I have them from two sources. First, from a semi-official source, which was the kitchen of the camp. In front of the kitchen a big chart was posted where the Germans recorded the ridiculously small rations and the number of men in the camp. This number decreased daily by 80 to 100, in the Russian camp. On the other hand, French comrades employed in the camp’s reception office, called “Aufnahme,” also knew the figures, and from them I got the figure of 2,500 survivors in February. Later, particularly at Rawa-Ruska, I had the opportunity of seeing French prisoners from all parts of Germany. All those who were in stalags, that is, in the central camps, at the time mentioned, saw the same thing. Many of the Russian prisoners were thrown in a common grave, even before they were dead. The dead and the dying were piled up between the barracks and thrown into carts. The first few days we could see the corpses in the carts, but as the German camp commandant did not like to see French soldiers salute their fallen Russian comrades, he had them covered with canvas after that.

M. DUBOST: Were your camps guarded by the German Army or by the SS?

ROSER: By the Wehrmacht.

M. DUBOST: Only by the German Army?

ROSER: I was never guarded by anybody but the German Army and once by the Schutzpolizei, after I had tried to escape.

M. DUBOST: And were you recaptured?


M. DUBOST: One last question. You were kept in a number of prisoner-of-war camps in Germany, were you not?


M. DUBOST: In all those camps did you have the opportunity to practice your religion?

ROSER: In the camps . . .

M. DUBOST: What is your religion?

ROSER: I am a Protestant. In the camps where I was kept, Protestants and Catholics were generally allowed to practice their religion. But I was detailed to working squads, particularly to an agricultural group in the Bremen district, called “Maiburg,” I think, where there was a Catholic priest. There were about sixty of us in this group. This Catholic priest could not say Mass—they would not let him.


ROSER: The sentries—the “Posten.”

M. DUBOST: Who were soldiers of the German Army?

ROSER: Yes, always.

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Does the British Prosecutor wish to ask any questions?


THE PRESIDENT: Or the United States?


THE PRESIDENT: Do any of the Defense Counsel wish to ask any questions?

DR. NELTE: Witness, when were you taken prisoner?

ROSER: I was taken prisoner on 14 June 1940.

DR. NELTE: In which camp for prisoners of war were you put?

ROSER: I was immediately sent to the Oflag, XI D, at Grossborn-Westfalenhof in Pomerania.

DR. NELTE: Oflag?


DR. NELTE: What regulations were made known to you in the prisoner-of-war camp regarding a possible attempt at escape?

ROSER: We were warned that we would be shot at and that we should not try to escape.

DR. NELTE: Do you think that this warning was in agreement with the Geneva Convention?

ROSER: This one certainly.

DR. NELTE: You mentioned, if I heard correctly, the case of Robin from Oflag XI D. You said that there was an officer who dug a tunnel in order to escape from the camp, and that as he was the first to emerge from the tunnel, he was shot. Is that right?

ROSER: Yes; I said so.

DR. NELTE: Were you with those officers who tried to escape?

ROSER: I said before that this was related to me by Lieutenant Ledoux who was still in Oflag XI D when that happened.

DR. NELTE: I only wanted to ascertain that this officer, Robin, met his death while trying to escape.

ROSER: Yes, but here I should like to mention one thing, namely, all the prisoners of war who escaped knew they risked their lives. Everyone attempting to escape, knew that he risked a bullet. But it is one thing to be killed trying to climb the barbed wire, for instance, and it is another thing to be ambushed and murdered at a moment when one cannot do anything, when one is unarmed and at the mercy of somebody, as was the case with Lieutenant Robin. He was in a low tunnel, flat on his stomach, crawling along, and was killed. That was not in accordance with international rules.

DR. NELTE: I see what you mean, and you may rest assured that I respect every prisoner of war who tried to do his duty as a patriot. In this case, however, which you did not witness, I wanted to make the point that this courageous officer who left the tunnel might not have answered when challenged by the guards and was therefore shot.


DR. NELTE: Though you have just given a vivid description of the incident, I think it was a product of your imagination because, according to your own testimony, you did not see it yourself; is that correct?

ROSER: There are not 36 different ways of getting out of an escape tunnel: You lie flat on your stomach, you crawl, and if you are killed before you get out of the tunnel, I call that murder.

DR. NELTE: And then you saw the officer . . .

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Nelte, we do not want argument in cross-examination. The witness has already stated that he was not there and did not see it, and he has explained the facts.

DR. NELTE: Thank you. The incident in respect to Lieutenant Thomson is not quite clear to me. In this case too, I believe you said you had no direct knowledge, but were informed by a friend. Is that correct?

ROSER: I cannot but repeat what I said before. I related the story of the French lieutenant, Ledoux, who told me that he was in the fortress of Graudenz together with an R.A.F. lieutenant called Anthony Thomson. This English officer escaped from the fortress. He was recaptured on the airfield, taken back to the fortress, put into the same cell as Lieutenant Ledoux, and Ledoux saw him killed by a revolver shot in the back of the neck. Ledoux gave me the name of the murderer. I think I mentioned him just now, Hauptfeldwebel Ostereich. This is the story told me by an eyewitness.

DR. NELTE: Was that Hauptfeldwebel Ostereich a guard at the camp, or to what formation did he belong?

ROSER: I don’t know.

DR. NELTE: Do you know that you, as prisoner of war, had a right to complain?

ROSER: Certainly; I personally knew the Geneva Convention which was signed by Germany in 1934.

DR. NELTE: Knowing those regulations you also knew, did you not, that you could complain to the camp commander? Did you avail yourself of that?

ROSER: I tried to do so, but without success.

DR. NELTE: May I ask you for the name of the camp commander who refused to hear you?

ROSER: I do not know the name, but I will tell you when I tried to complain. It was when I was in the infamous Linzburg Strafkommando (punishment squad) in the province of Hanover. This squad belonged to Stalag XC. In the morning following the night I have just described, when, after an unsuccessful attempt at escape, we were beaten for 3 hours running, some of us were kept in the barracks. We then saw the immediate superior of the commander of the squad. It was an Oberleutnant, whose name I do not know, who saw that we were injured, particularly about the head, and he considered it quite all right. In the afternoon we went to work. When we returned at 7 o’clock we had the visit of a major, a very distinguished-looking man, who also thought that, as we had tried to escape, it was quite in order that we should be punished. As to our complaint, it went no further.

DR. NELTE: Did you know that the German Government had made an agreement with the Vichy Government regarding prisoners of war?

ROSER: Yes, I have heard of that, but they did not inspect squads of this kind.

DR. NELTE: You mean to say that only the camps were inspected, but not the labor squads?

ROSER: There were inspections of the labor squads, but not of the punishment squads where I was. That is the difference.

DR. NELTE: You were not always in a disciplinary squad, were you?


DR. NELTE: When were you put in a disciplinary squad?

ROSER: In April 1941, for the first time. It was a squad to which only officer cadets and priests were sent without any obvious reasons. This was the Linzburg Strafkommando squad which did not receive any visits. At Rawa-Ruska we received the visit of two Swiss doctors; I think it was in September 1942.

DR. NELTE: In September 1942?

ROSER: Yes, in September 1942.

DR. NELTE: Did you complain to the Swiss doctors?

ROSER: Not I personally, but our spokesman was able to talk to them.

DR. NELTE: And were there any results?

ROSER: Yes, certainly.

DR. NELTE: Do you not think that a complaint made through the camp commander would likewise have been successful, if you had wished to resort to it?

ROSER: We were not on very friendly terms with the German staff at Rawa-Ruska.

DR. NELTE: I do not quite understand you.

ROSER: I said we were not on friendly terms with the German commander of the Rawa-Ruska Camp.

DR. NELTE: It is not a question of good terms, but of a complaint which could be made in an official manner. Do you not think so?

[The witness shrugged his shoulders.]

DR. NELTE: When did you leave Rawa-Ruska?

ROSER: At the end of October 1942.

DR. NELTE: If I remember rightly, you mentioned the number of victims counted or observed by you, did you not?


DR. NELTE: How many victims were there?

ROSER: It was a figure given to me by Dr. Lievin, a French doctor at Rawa-Ruska. There were, as I said, about sixty deaths in the camp itself, to which approximately one hundred must be added who disappeared.

DR. NELTE: Are you speaking of French victims or victims in general?

ROSER: When I was at Rawa-Ruska there were only Frenchmen there, with a few Poles and a few Belgians.

DR. NELTE: I am putting this question because an official French report I have before me, dated 14 June 1945, states that the victims up to the end of July were 14 Frenchmen, and therefore for the period from August to September the number seems to me very high. Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other German counsel want to put any questions to this witness? [There was no response.] M. Dubost?

M. DUBOST: I have finished with this witness, Mr. President. If the Tribunal will permit me, I shall now call another witness, the last one.

THE PRESIDENT: One moment, M. Dubost, the witness can retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. Dubost, could you tell the Tribunal whether the witness you are about to call is going to give us any evidence of a different nature from the evidence which has already been given? Because you will remember that we have in the French document, of which we shall take judicial notice—a very large French document; I forget the number, 321 I believe it is, Document Number RF-321; we have a very large volume of evidence on the conditions in concentration camps. Is the witness you are going to call going to prove anything fresh?

M. DUBOST: Your Honors, the witness whom we are going to call is to testify to a certain number of experiments which he witnessed. He has even submitted certain documents.

THE PRESIDENT: Are these experiments about which the witness is going to speak all recorded, in the Document Number RF-321?

M. DUBOST: They are referred to, but not reported in detail. Moreover, in view of the importance attached to statements of witnesses in the French presentation concerning the camps, I shall considerably curtail my work and will dispense with reading the documentary evidence, a large amount of which I shall merely submit after these witnesses have been heard.

THE PRESIDENT: You may call the witness, but try not to let him be too long.

M. DUBOST: I shall do my best, Mr. President.

[The witness, Dr. Alfred Balachowsky, took the stand.]

THE PRESIDENT: What is your name?

DR. ALFRED BALACHOWSKY (Witness): Alfred Balachowsky.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you French?


THE PRESIDENT: Will you take this oath? Do you swear to speak without hate or fear, to say the truth, all the truth, only the truth?

[The witness repeated the oath in French.]

Raise your right hand and swear.


THE PRESIDENT: You may sit if you wish.

M. DUBOST: Your name is Balachowsky, Alfred B-a-l-a-c-h-o-w-s-k-y?

BALACHOWSKY: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: You are head of a laboratory at the Pasteur Institute in Paris?

BALACHOWSKY: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: Your residence is at Viroflay? You were born 15 August 1909 at Korotcha in Russia?

BALACHOWSKY: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: You are French?


M. DUBOST: By birth?

BALACHOWSKY: Russian by birth, French by naturalization.

M. DUBOST: When were you naturalized?


M. DUBOST: Were you deported on 16 January 1944 after being arrested on 2 July 1943, and were you 6 months in prison first at Fresnes, then at Compiègne? Were you then transferred to the Dora Camp?

BALACHOWSKY: That is correct.

M. DUBOST: Can you tell us rapidly what you know about the Dora Camp?

BALACHOWSKY: The Dora Camp is situated 5 kilometers north of the town of Nordhausen, in southern Germany. This camp was considered by the Germans as a secret detachment, a Geheimkommando, which prisoners who were kept there could never leave.

This secret detachment had as its task the manufacture of V-1’s and V-2’s—the “Vergeltungswaffen” (reprisal weapons)—the aerial torpedoes which the Germans launched on England. That is why Dora was a secret detachment. The camp was divided into two parts: one outer part contained one-third of the total number of persons in the camp, and the remaining two-thirds were concentrated in the underground factory. Dora, consequently, was an underground factory for the manufacture of V-1’s and V-2’s. I arrived at Dora on 10 February 1944, coming from Buchenwald.

M. DUBOST: Please speak more slowly. You arrived at Dora from Buchenwald on . . .?

BALACHOWSKY: On 10 February 1944, that is at a time when life in the Dora Camp was particularly hard.

On 10 February we were loaded, 76 men, onto a large German lorry. We were forced to crouch down, four SS guards occupying the seats at the front of the lorry. As we could not all crouch down, being too many, whenever a man raised his head he got a blow with a rifle butt, so that in the course of our 4-hour journey several of us were injured.

After our arrival at Dora, we spent a whole day and night without food, in the cold, in the snow, waiting for all the formalities of registration in the camp—completing forms, with names and surnames, and so on.

In comparison with Buchenwald, we found a considerable change at Dora, as the general management of the Dora Camp was entrusted to a special category of prisoners who were criminals. These criminals were our block leaders, served our soup, and looked after us. In contrast to the political prisoners who wore a red triangular badge, these criminals were distinguished by a green triangular badge on which was a black S. We called them the “S” men (Sicherheitsverband). They were people convicted of crimes by German courts long before the war, but who, instead of being sent home after having served their terms, were kept for life in concentration camps to supervise the other prisoners. Needless to say prisoners of that kind, these criminals with the green triangles, were asocial elements. Sometimes they had been 5, 10, even 20 years in prison, and afterwards, 5 or 10 years in concentration camps. These asocial outcasts no longer had any hope of ever getting out of the concentration camps. These criminals, however, thanks to the support and co-operation they were offered by the SS management of the camp, now had the chance of a career. This career consisted in stealing from and robbing the other prisoners, and obtaining from them the maximum output demanded by the SS. They beat us from morning till night. We got up at 4 o’clock in the morning and had to be ready within 5 minutes in the underground dormitories where we were crammed, without ventilation in foul air, in blocks about as large as this room, into which 3,000 to 3,500 internees were crowded. There were five tiers of bunks with rotting straw mattresses. Fresh ones were never issued. We were given 5 minutes in which to get up, for we went to bed completely dressed. We were hardly able to get any sleep, for there was a continuous coming and going, and all sorts of thefts took place among the prisoners. Furthermore, it was impossible to sleep because we were covered with lice; the whole Dora Camp swarmed with vermin. It was virtually impossible to get rid of the lice. In 5 minutes we had to be in line in the tunnel and march to a given place.

THE PRESIDENT: [To the witness] Just a minute, please. M. Dubost, you said you were going to call this witness upon experiments. He is now giving us all the details of camp life which we have already heard on several occasions.

M. DUBOST: So far nobody has spoken about the Dora Camp, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, but every camp we have heard of has got the same sort of brutalities, hasn’t it, according to the witnesses who have been called?

You were going to call this witness because he was going to deal with experiments.

M. DUBOST: If the Tribunal is convinced that all the camps had the same regime, then my point has been proved and the witness will now testify to the experiments at the Buchenwald Camp. However, I wanted to show that all German camps were the same. I think this has now been proved.

THE PRESIDENT: If you were going to prove that, you would have to call a witness from every camp, and there are hundreds of them.

M. DUBOST: This question has to be proved because it is the uniformity of the system which establishes the culpability of these defendants. In every camp there was one responsible person who was the camp commander. But we are not trying the camp commander, but the defendants here in the dock and we are trying them for having conceived . . .

THE PRESIDENT: I have already pointed out to you that there has been practically no cross-examination, and I have asked you to confine this witness, as far as possible, to the question of experiments.

M. DUBOST: The witness will then confine himself to experiments at Buchenwald as this is the Tribunal’s wish. The Tribunal will consider the uniformity of treatment in all German internment camps as proved.

[Turning to the witness] Will you now testify to the criminal practices of the SS Medical Corps in the camps, criminal practices in the form of scientific experiments?

BALACHOWSKY: I was recalled to Buchenwald the 1st of May 1944, and assigned to Block 50, which was actually a factory for the manufacture of vaccines against exanthematous typhus. I was recalled from Dora to Buchenwald, because, in the meantime, the management of the camp had learned that I was a specialist in this sort of research, and consequently they wished to utilize my services in Block 50 for the manufacture of vaccines. However, I was unaware of it until the very last moment.

I came to Block 50 on the 1st of May 1944, and I stayed there until the liberation of the camp on the 11th of April 1945.

Block 50, which was the block where vaccines were manufactured, was under Sturmbannführer Schuler, who was a doctor with the rank of a Sturmbannführer, equal to SS major. He was in charge of the block and was responsible for the manufacture of the vaccines. This same Sturmbannführer Schuler was also in charge of another block in the Buchenwald Camp. This other block was Block 46, the infamous block for experiments, where the internees were utilized as guinea pigs.

Blocks 46 and 50 were both run by one office; it was the “Geschäftszimmer.” All archives, index cards pertaining to the experiments—as well as Block 50, were sent to the Geschäftszimmer, that is, to the office of Block 50.

The secretary of Block 50 was an Austrian political prisoner, my friend, Eugene Kogon. He and a few other comrades had, consequently, opportunities of looking through all the archives of which they had charge. Therefore they were able to know, day by day, exactly what went on either in Block 50, our block, or in Block 46. I myself was able to get hold of most of the archives of Block 46, and even the book in which the experiments were recorded has been saved. It is in our possession, and has been forwarded to the Psychological Service of the American Forces.

In this book all experiments are entered which were made in Block 46. Block 46 was established in October 1941 by a high commission subordinate to the medical service of the Waffen SS; and we see as members of its administrative council, a certain number of names, for this Block 46 came under the Research Section Number 5 (Versuchsabteilung Number 5 of Leipzig) of the Supreme Command of the Waffen SS. Inspector Mrugowski, Obergruppenführer of the Waffen SS, was in charge of this section. The administrative council which set up Block 46 was composed of the following members:

Dr. Genzken, Obergruppenführer (the highest rank in the Waffen SS); Dr. Poppendiek, Gruppenführer of the Waffen SS; and finally we see among these names also that of Dr. Handloser of the Wehrmacht and of the Military Academy of Berlin, who was also associated with the initiation of experiments on human beings.

Thus, in this administrative council there were members of the SS, and also Dr. Handloser. The experiments proper were carried out by Sturmbannführer Schuler, but all the orders and directives concerning the different types of experiments, which I shall speak about to you, were issued by Leipzig, that is, by the Research Section (Versuchsabteilung) of the Waffen SS. So there was no personal initiative on the part of Schuler or the management of the camp.

As to the experiments, all orders came directly from the Supreme Command in Berlin. Among these experiments, which we could follow step by step (at least some of them) through the cards, the results, the registration number of people admitted to and discharged from Block 46, were, first of all, numerous exanthematous typhus experiments; second, experiments on phosphorus burns; third, experiments on sexual hormones; fourth, experiments on starvation edema or avitaminosis; finally, fifth, I can tell you of experiments in the field of forensic medicine. So we have five different types of experiments.

M. DUBOST: Were the men who were subjected to these experiments volunteers or not?

BALACHOWSKY: The human beings subjected to experiments were recruited, not only in the Buchenwald Camp, but also outside the camp. They were not volunteers; in most cases they did not know that they would be used for experiments until they entered Block 46. The recruitment took place among criminals, perhaps in order to reduce their large numbers in that way. But the recruitment was also carried out among political prisoners and I have to point out that recruits for Block 46 came also from Russian prisoners of war. Among the political prisoners and prisoners of war who were used for experimental purposes at Block 46, the Russians were always in the majority, for the following reasons:

Of all the prisoners who could exist in concentration camps it was the Russians who had the greatest physical resistance, which was obviously superior to that of the French or other people of western Europe. They could withstand hunger and ill-treatment, and, generally speaking, showed physical resistance in every respect. For this particular reason, Russian political prisoners were recruited for experiments in greater numbers than others. However, there were people of other nationalities among them, particularly French. I should now like to deal with details of the experiments themselves.

M. DUBOST: Do not go too much into details, because we are not specialists. It will suffice us to know that these experiments were carried out without any regard to humanity and on nonvoluntary subjects. Will you please describe to us the atrocious character of these experiments and their results.

BALACHOWSKY: The experiments carried out in Block 46 did without doubt serve a medical purpose, but for the greater part they were of no service to science. Therefore, they can hardly be called experiments. The men were used for observing the effects of drugs, poisons, bacterial cultures, et cetera. I take, as an example, the use of vaccine against exanthematous typhus. To manufacture this vaccine it is necessary to have bacterial cultures of typhus. For experiments such as are carried out at the Pasteur Institute and the other similar institutes of the world, cultures are not necessary as typhus patients can always be found for samples of infected blood. Here it was quite different. From the records and the chart you have in hand, we could ascertain in Block 46 12 different cultures of typhus germs, designated by the letter BU, (meaning Buchenwald) and numbered Buchenwald 1 to Buchenwald 12. A constant supply of these cultures was kept in Block 46 by means of the contamination of healthy individuals through sick ones; this was achieved by artificial inoculation of typhus germs by means of intravenous injections of 0.5 to 1 cubic centimeter of infected blood drawn from a patient at the height of the crisis. Now, it is well-known that artificial inoculation of typhus by intravenous injection is invariably fatal. Therefore all these men who were used for bacterial culture during the whole time such cultures were required (from October 1942 to the liberation of the camp) died, and we counted 600 victims sacrificed for the sole purpose of supplying typhus germs.

M. DUBOST: They were literally murdered to keep typhus germs alive?

BALACHOWSKY: They were literally murdered to keep typhus germs alive. Apart from these, other experiments were made as to the efficacy of vaccines.

M. DUBOST: What is this document?

BALACHOWSKY: This document contains a record of the typhus cultures.

M. DUBOST: This document was taken by you from the camp?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, I took this document from the camp, and its contents were summarized by me in the experiment book of Block 46.

M. DUBOST: Is this the document you handed to us?

BALACHOWSKY: We have actually made a more complete document—which is in the possession of the American Psychological Service—as we have the entire record, and this represents only one page of it.

M. DUBOST: I ask the Tribunal to take note that the French Prosecution submits this document, Document Number RF-334, as appendix to the testimony of Dr. Balachowsky.

BALACHOWSKY: [Continuing] In 1944, experiments were also made on the effects of vaccines. One hundred and fifty men lost their lives in these experiments. The vaccines used by the German Army were not only those manufactured in our Block 46, but also ones which came from Italy, Denmark, Poland, and the Germans wanted to ascertain the value of these different vaccines. Consequently, in August 1944 they began experiments on 150 men who were locked up in Block 46.

Here, I should like to tell you how this Block 46 was run. It was entirely isolated and surrounded by barbed wire. The internees had no roll call and no permission to go out. All the windows were kept closed, the panes were of frosted glass. No unauthorized person could enter the block. A German political prisoner was in charge of the Block. This German political prisoner was Kapo Dietzsch, an asocial individual who had been in prisons and in camps for 20 years and who worked for the SS. It was he who gave the injections and the inoculations and who executed people upon order. Strangely enough, there were weapons in the block, automatic pistols, and hand grenades, to quell any possible revolt, either outside or inside the block.

I can also tell you that an order slip for Block 46, sent to the office (Geschäftszimmer) at Block 50 in January 1945, mentioned three strait jackets to be used for those who refused to be inoculated.

Now I come back to the typhus and vaccine experiments. You will see how they were carried out.

The 150 prisoners were divided into 2 groups: those who were to be used as tests and those who were to be the subjects. The latter only received (ordinary) injections of the different types of vaccines to be tested. Those used for testing were not given any injections. Then, after the vaccination of the subjects, inoculations were given (always by means of intravenous injections) to everybody selected for this experiment, those for testing as well as the subjects. Those used for tests died about two weeks after the inoculation—as such is approximately the period required before the disease develops to its fatal issue. As for the others, who received different kinds of vaccines, their deaths were in proportion to the efficacy of the vaccines administered to them. Some vaccines had excellent results, with a very low death rate—such was the case with the Polish vaccines. Others, on the contrary, had a much higher death rate. After the conclusion of the experiments, no survivors were allowed to live, according to the custom prevailing in Block 46. All the survivors of the experiments were “liquidated” and murdered in Block 46, by the customary methods which some of my comrades have already described to you, that is by means of intracardiac injections of phenol. Intracardiac injections of 10 cubic centimeters of pure phenol was the usual method of extermination in Buchenwald.

THE PRESIDENT: We are not really concerned here with the proportion of the particular injections.

BALACHOWSKY: Will you repeat that please?

THE PRESIDENT: As I have said, we are not really concerned here with the proportions in which these injections were given, and will you kindly not deal with these details?

M. DUBOST: You might try and confine the witness.

BALACHOWSKY: [Continuing] Then I will speak of other details which may interest you. They are experiments of a psychotherapeutic nature, utilization of chemical products to cure typhus, in Block 46, under the same conditions as before. German industries co-operated in these experiments, notably the I. G. Farben Industrie which supplied a certain number of drugs to be used for experiments in Block 46. Among the professors who supplied the drugs, knowing that they would be used in Block 46 for experimental purposes, was Professor Lautenschläger of Frankfurt. So much for the question of typhus.

I now come to experiments with phosphorus, particularly made on prisoners of Russian origin. Phosphorus burns were inflicted in Block 46 on Russian prisoners for the following reason. Certain bombs dropped in Germany by the Allied aviators caused burns on the civilians and soldiers which were difficult to heal. Consequently, the Germans tried to find a whole series of drugs which would hasten the healing of the wounds caused by these burns. Thus, experiments were carried out in Block 46 on Russian prisoners who were artificially burned with phosphorus products and then treated with different drugs supplied by the German chemical industry.

Now as to experiments on sexual hormones . . .

M. DUBOST: What were the results of these experiments?

BALACHOWSKY: All these experiments resulted in death.

M. DUBOST: Always in death? So each experiment is equivalent to a murder for which the SS are collectively responsible?

BALACHOWSKY: For which those who established this institution are responsible.

M. DUBOST: That is the SS as a whole, and the German medical corps in particular?

BALACHOWSKY: Definitely so, as the orders came from the Versuchsabteilung 5 (Research Section 5). The SS were responsible as the orders were issued by that section at Leipzig and, therefore, came from the Supreme Command of the Waffen SS.

M. DUBOST: Thank you. What were the results of the experiments made on sexual hormones?

BALACHOWSKY: They were less serious. Besides, these were ridiculous experiments from the scientific point of view. There were, at Buchenwald, a number of homosexuals, that is to say, men who had been convicted by German tribunals for this vice. These homosexuals were sent to concentration camps, especially to Buchenwald, and were mixed with the other prisoners.

M. DUBOST: Especially with the so-called political prisoners, who in reality were patriots?

BALACHOWSKY: With all kinds of prisoners.

M. DUBOST: All were in the company of these German inverts?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes. They wore a pink triangle to distinguish them.

M. DUBOST: Was the wearing of this triangle a well-established custom, or on the contrary, was there much confusion in classification?

BALACHOWSKY: At the very first, before my arrival, from what I heard, order was kept with respect to triangular badges; but when I arrived at Buchenwald, in January of 1944, there was the greatest confusion in the badges, and many prisoners wore no badge at all.

M. DUBOST: Or did they wear badges of a category different from their own?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, this was the case with many Frenchmen, who were sent to Buchenwald because they were ordinary criminals and who finally wore the red triangle of political prisoners.

M. DUBOST: What was the color of the triangle worn by the ordinary German criminals?

BALACHOWSKY: They had a green triangle.

M. DUBOST: Did they not wear eventually a red triangle?

BALACHOWSKY: No, because they had more privileges than the others and they wore the green triangle distinctly.

M. DUBOST: And in the working groups?

THE PRESIDENT: We have heard that they were all mixed up.

M. DUBOST: The fact will not have escaped the Tribunal that these questions are put to counter other questions which were asked this morning by the Counsel for the Defense with the intent to confuse not the Tribunal, but the witnesses.

BALACHOWSKY: I repeat that we had a complete conglomeration of nationalities and categories of prisoners.

THE PRESIDENT: That is exactly what he said, that these triangles were completely mixed up.

M. DUBOST: I think, that the statement by this second witness will definitively enlighten the Tribunal on this point, whatever the efforts of the Defense might be to mislead us.

[Turning to the witness] Do you know anything about the fate of tattooed men?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, indeed.

M. DUBOST: Will you please tell us what you know about them?

BALACHOWSKY: Tattooed human skins were stored in Block 2, which was called at Buchenwald the Pathological Block.

M. DUBOST: Were there many tattooed human skins in Block 2?

BALACHOWSKY: There were always tattooed human skins in Block 2. I cannot say whether there were many, as they were continuously being received and passed on, but there were not only tattooed human skins, but also tanned human skins—simply tanned, not tattooed.

M. DUBOST: Did they skin people?

BALACHOWSKY: They removed the skin and then tanned it.

M. DUBOST: Will you continue your testimony on that point?

BALACHOWSKY: I saw SS men come out of Block 2, the Pathological Block, carrying tanned skins under their arms. I know, from my comrades who worked in Pathological Block 2, that there were orders for skins; and these tanned skins were given as gifts to certain guards and to certain visitors, who used them to bind books.

M. DUBOST: We were told that Koch, who was the head at that time, was sentenced for this practice.

BALACHOWSKY: I was not a witness of the Koch affair, which happened before I came to the camp.

M. DUBOST: So that even after he left there were still tanned and tattooed skins?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, there were constantly tanned and tattooed skins, and when the camp was liberated by the Americans, they found in the camp, in Block 2, tattooed and tanned skins on 11 April 1945.

M. DUBOST: Where were these skins tanned?

BALACHOWSKY: These skins were tanned in Block 2, and perhaps also in the crematorium buildings, which were not far from Block 2.

M. DUBOST: Then, according to your testimony, it was a customary practice which continued even after Koch’s execution?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, this practice continued, but I do not know to what extent.

M. DUBOST: Did you witness any inspections made at the camp by German officials, and if so, who were these officials?

BALACHOWSKY: I can tell you something about Dora, concerning such visits.

M. DUBOST: Excuse me, I have one more thing to ask you about the skins. Do you know anything about Koch’s conviction?

BALACHOWSKY: I heard rumors and remarks about Koch’s conviction from my old comrades, who were in the camp at that time. But I personally was not a witness of the affair.

M. DUBOST: Never mind. It is enough for me to know that after his conviction skins were still tanned and tattooed.


M. DUBOST: You expressly state it?

BALACHOWSKY: Absolutely. Even after his conviction, tanned and tattooed skins were still seen.

M. DUBOST: Will you tell us now what visits were made to the camp by German officials, and who these officials were?

BALACHOWSKY: Contacts between the outside—that is German civilians and even German soldiers—and the interior of the camp were made possible by departures and furloughs that some political prisoners were able to obtain from the SS in order to spend some time with their families; and, vice versa, there were visits to the camp by members of the Wehrmacht. In Block 50 we had a visit of Luftwaffe cadets. These Luftwaffe cadets, members of the regular German armed forces, passed through the camp and were able to see practically everything that went on there.

M. DUBOST: What did they do in Block 50?

BALACHOWSKY: They just came to see the equipment at the invitation of Sturmbannführer Schuler. We received several visits.

M. DUBOST: What was the equipment?

BALACHOWSKY: Equipment for the manufacture of vaccines, laboratory equipment.

M. DUBOST: Thank you.

BALACHOWSKY: There were other visits also, and some German Red Cross nurses visited that block in October 1944.

M. DUBOST: Do you know the names of German personalities who visited the camp?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, such personalities as the Crown Prince of Waldeck and Pyrmont, who was an Obergruppenführer of the Waffen SS and the Chief of Police of Hesse and Thuringia, who visited the camp on several occasions, including Block 46 as well as Block 50. He was greatly interested in the experiments.

M. DUBOST: Do you know what the attitude of mind of the prisoners was shortly before their liberation by the American forces?

BALACHOWSKY: The prisoners of the camp expected the liberation to come at any moment. On the 11th of April, in the morning, there was perfect order in the camp and exemplary discipline. We hid, with extreme difficulty and in the greatest secrecy, some weapons: cases of hand grenades, and about two hundred and fifty guns which were divided in 2 lots, 1 lot of 100 guns in the hospital, and another lot of about one hundred and fifty guns in my Block 50. As soon as the Americans began to appear below the camp of Buchenwald, about 3 o’clock in the afternoon of the 11th of April 1945, the political prisoners assembled in line, seized the weapons and made prisoners of most of the SS guards of the camp or shot all those who resisted. These guards had great difficulty in escaping as they carried rucksacks filled with booty—objects they had stolen from the prisoners during the time they guarded the camp.

M. DUBOST: Thank you. I have no further questions to put to the witness.

THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now for ten minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

THE PRESIDENT: Do any of the defendants’ counsel want to ask any questions of this witness?

DR. KAUFFMANN: Are you a specialist in research concerning the manufacture of vaccines?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, I am a specialist in matters of research.

DR. KAUFFMANN: According to your opinion, was there any sense in the treatment to which these people were subjected?

BALACHOWSKY: It had no scientific significance; it only had a practical purpose. It permitted the verification of the efficacy of certain products.

DR. KAUFFMANN: You must have your own opinion, as you were in contact with these men. Did you really see these people?

BALACHOWSKY: I saw these people at very close hand, since in Block 50 I was in charge of a part of this manufacture of vaccine. Consequently, I was quite able to realize what kind of experiments were being made in Block 46 and the reasons for these experiments. Further, I also realized the almost complete inefficiency of the SS doctors and how easy it was for us to sabotage the vaccine for the German Army.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Now, these people must have gone through much misery and suffering before they died.

BALACHOWSKY: These people certainly suffered terribly, especially in the case of certain experiments.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Can you certify that through your own experience, or is that just hearsay?

BALACHOWSKY: I saw in Block 50 photographs taken in Block 46 of phosphorus burns, and it was not necessary to be a specialist to realize what these patients, whose flesh was burned to the bone, must have suffered.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Then, your conscience certainly revolted at these things.

BALACHOWSKY: Absolutely.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Well then, I would like to ask you, how your conscience allowed you to obey orders to help these people in some way?

BALACHOWSKY: That is quite simple. When I arrived at Buchenwald as a deportee, I did not hide my qualifications. I simply specified that I was a “laborant”—that is a man who is trained in laboratory work, but who has no special definite qualification. I was sent to Dora, where the SS regime made me lose 30 kilos in weight in two months. I became anaemic . . .

DR. KAUFFMANN: Witness, I am just concerned with Buchenwald. I do not wish to know anything about Dora. I ask you . . .

BALACHOWSKY: It was the prisoners at Buchenwald who, by their connections within the camp, were the cause of my return to the Buchenwald Camp. It was M. Julien Cain, a Frenchman, the Director of the French National Library, who called my presence to the attention of a German political prisoner, Walter Kummelschein, who was a secretary in Block 50. He drew attention to my presence without my knowing it and without my having spoken in Dora of being a French specialist. That is the reason why the SS called me back from Dora to work in Block 50.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Please pardon the interruption. We do not wish to elaborate too much on these matters. I believe everything that you have just said is true—the reason why you were sent to Dora and why you were sent back to Buchenwald—but my point is a completely different one. I would like to ask you once more: You knew that these men were practically martyrs. Is that correct? Please answer yes or no.

BALACHOWSKY: I will answer the question. When I arrived at Block 50 I knew nothing, either of the Block 50 or of the experiments. It was only later when I was in Block 50, that little by little, and through the acquaintances I was able to make in the block, I found out the details of the experiments.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Very well. And after you had learned about the details of the experiments, as you were a doctor, did you not feel great pity for these poor creatures?

BALACHOWSKY: My pity was very great, but it was not a question of having pity or not; one had to carry out to the letter the orders that were given, or be killed.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Very well. Then you are stating that if in any way you had not followed the orders that you had received you might have been killed? Is that right?

BALACHOWSKY: There is no doubt about that. On the other hand, my work consisted in manufacturing vaccine, and neither I nor any other prisoners in Block 50 could ever enter Block 46 and actually witness experiments. We knew what went on concerning the experiments only through the index cards which were sent from Block 46 to be officially registered in Block 50.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Very well, but I do not think it makes any difference to one’s conscience whether one sees suffering with one’s own eyes, or whether one has direct knowledge that in the same camp people are being murdered in such a way. Now, I come to another question.

THE PRESIDENT: Was that a question you were putting there? Will you confine yourself to questions.

BALACHOWSKY: I beg your pardon. I should like to answer the last question.

DR. KAUFFMANN: That was not a question. I will put another question now.

BALACHOWSKY: I should like to reply to this remark then.

DR. KAUFFMANN: I am not interested in your answer.

BALACHOWSKY: I am anxious to give it.

THE PRESIDENT: Answer the question, please.

BALACHOWSKY: Suffering was everywhere in the camps, and not only in the experimental blocks. It was in the quarantine blocks; it was among all the men who died every day by the hundreds. Suffering reigned everywhere in the concentration camps.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Were there any injunctions that there was to be no talk about these experiments?

BALACHOWSKY: As a rule the experiments were kept absolutely secret. An indiscreet remark with regard to the experiments might entail immediate death. I must add that there were very few of us who knew the details of these experiments.

DR. KAUFFMANN: You mentioned visits to this camp, and you also mentioned that German Red Cross nurses, and members of the Wehrmacht visited the camp, and that furloughs were granted to political prisoners. Were you ever present at one of these visits inside the camp?

BALACHOWSKY: Yes, I was present at the visits inside the camp of which I spoke.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Did the visitors at this camp see that cardiac injections were being given? Or did the visitors see that human skin was tanned? Did those visitors witness any ill-treatment?

BALACHOWSKY: I cannot answer this question in the affirmative, and I can say only that visitors passed through my block. One had to pass almost through the entire camp. I do not know where the visitors went either before or after visiting my block.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Did one of your own comrades tell you perhaps whether the visitors personally saw these excesses? Yes or no.

BALACHOWSKY: I do not understand the question. Would you mind repeating it?

DR. KAUFFMANN: Did perhaps one of your comrades tell you that the visitors at the camp were present at these excesses?

BALACHOWSKY: I never heard that visitors were present at experiments or witnessed excesses of that kind. The only thing I can say, concerning the tanned skins is that I saw, with my own eyes, SS noncommissioned officers or officers—I cannot remember exactly whether they were officers or noncommissioned officers—come out of Block 2, carrying tanned skins under their arms. But these were SS men; they were not visitors to the camp.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Did these visitors, and in particular Red Cross nurses, know that these experiments were medically completely worthless, or did they just wish to inspect the laboratories and the equipment?

BALACHOWSKY: I repeat again that these visitors came to my laboratory section, where they saw what was being done, that is, the sterilized filling of the phials. I cannot say what they saw before or after. I know only that these visitors of whom I am speaking, the Luftwaffe cadets or the Red Cross people, visited the whole installation of the block. They certainly knew, however, what was the source of this culture, and that men might be used for experiments, as there were charts and graphs showing the stages of cultures originating with men; but it could have been from blood initially taken from typhus patients and not necessarily from patients artificially inoculated with typhus.

I really think that these visitors did not generally know about the atrocities in the form of experiments that were being performed in Block 46, but it was impossible for visitors who went into the camp not to see the horrible conditions in which the prisoners were kept.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Do you perhaps know whether people who received leave, that is, inmates who temporarily were permitted to leave the camp, were permitted to speak about their experiences inside the camp and relate these experiences to the outside world?

BALACHOWSKY: All the concentration camps were, after all, vast transit camps. The inmates were constantly changing, passing from one camp to another, coming and going. Consequently there were always new faces. But most of the time, apart from those whom we knew before our arrest, or a few other comrades, we knew nothing about those who came and went.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Perhaps I did not express myself clearly. I mean the following: As you said before, political prisoners were permitted to leave the camp temporarily from time to time. Did these inmates know about these excesses, and if they did know, were they permitted to speak about these experiments in the rest of Germany?

BALACHOWSKY: The political prisoners (very few and all of German nationality) who ever obtained leave were prisoners whom the SS had entrusted with important posts in the camp and who had been imprisoned for at least 10 years in the camp. This was so, for instance, in the case of Karl, the Kapo, head of the canteen of the Buchenwald Camp, the canteen of the Waffen SS, who was responsible for the canteen. He was given a fortnight’s leave to visit his family at his home in the town of Zeitz. Consequently this Kapo was free for 10 days and was able to tell his family anything he wanted to; but I do not know, of course, what he did. What I can say is that obviously he had to be careful. In any case, the prisoners who were allowed to leave the camp were old inmates, as I have said, who knew approximately everything that was going on, including the experiments.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Now, one last question. If I assume that the people you just described told anything to members of their families, even on the pledge of secrecy, and the leaders of the camp came to know of these indiscretions, do you not believe that the death penalty might have been incurred?

BALACHOWSKY: If there were indiscretions of that kind on the part of the family (for such indiscretions may be repeated among one’s acquaintances), or at least, if such indiscretions came to the knowledge of the SS, it is obvious that those prisoners risked the death penalty.

DR. KAUFFMANN: Thank you very much.

THE PRESIDENT: Is there any other Defense Counsel who wants to ask any questions?

HERR BABEL: I protest against the prosecutor’s declaration that I tried to confuse witnesses with my questions. I am not here to worry about the good opinion or otherwise of the press, but to do my duty as a defense attorney . . .

THE PRESIDENT: You are going too fast.

HERR BABEL: [Continuing] . . . and I am of the opinion that things should not be made more difficult by anyone taking part in this Trial—not even the press.

This war has brought me so much misfortune and sorrow that I have no reason to vindicate anyone who was responsible for this personal suffering or for the misfortune that fell on all our people. I will not try to prevent any such person from receiving his proper punishment. I am concerned only with helping the Tribunal to determine the truth, so that just sentences may be pronounced, and that innocent people may not be condemned.

THE PRESIDENT: Kindly resume your seat. It is not fit for you to make a speech. You have been making a speech, as I understood it; this is not the occasion for it.

HERR BABEL: I find it necessary because I was not protected against the Prosecution’s reproach.

[Herr Babel left the stand to resume his seat.]

THE PRESIDENT: One moment; come back. I do not know what you mean about not being protected. Well! Listen to me. I don’t know what you mean by not being protected against the Prosecution. The Prosecution called this witness and the defendants’ counsel had the fullest opportunity to cross-examine, and we understood you went to the Tribunal for the purpose of cross-examining the witness. I do not understand your protest.

HERR BABEL: Your Honor, unfortunately I do not know the court procedure customary in England, America, and other countries. According to the German penal code and to German trial regulations, it is customary that unjustified and unfounded attacks of this kind made against a participant of a trial are rejected by the presiding judge. I therefore expected that perhaps this would be done here too, but as it did not happen, I took the occasion to. . . . If by doing so, I violated the rules of court procedure, I beg to be excused.

THE PRESIDENT: What unjust accusations are you referring to?

HERR BABEL: The Prosecuting Attorney implied that I put questions to witnesses calculated to confuse them, in order to prevent the witnesses from testifying in a proper manner. This is an accusation against the Defense which is an insult to us, at least to myself—I do not know what the attitude of the other Defense Counsel is.

THE PRESIDENT: I am afraid I do not understand what you mean.

HERR BABEL: Your Honor, I am sorry. I think I cannot convince you as you probably do not know this aspect of German mentality, for our German regulations are entirely different. I do not wish to reproach our President in any way. I merely wanted to point out that I consider this accusation unjust and that I reject it.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Babel, I understand you are saying that the Prosecuting Attorney said something to you? Now, what is it you say the Prosecuting Attorney said to you?

HERR BABEL: The Prosecuting Attorney said that I wanted to confuse witnesses by my questions and, in my opinion that means I am doing something improper. I am not here to confuse witnesses, but to assist the Court to find the truth, and this cannot be done by confusing the witnesses.

THE PRESIDENT: I understand now. I do not think that the Prosecuting Attorney meant to make accusations against your professional conduct at all. If that is only what you wish to say, I quite understand the point you wish to make. Do you want to ask this witness any questions?

HERR BABEL: Yes, I have one question. [Turning to the witness] You testified that weapons, 50 guns, if I understood correctly, were brought into either Block 46 or 50. Who brought these weapons in?

BALACHOWSKY: We, the prisoners, brought them in and hid them.

HERR BABEL: For what purpose?

BALACHOWSKY: To save our skins.

HERR BABEL: I did not understand you.

BALACHOWSKY: I said that we hid these guns because we meant to sell our lives dearly at the last moment—that is, to defend ourselves to the death rather than be exterminated, as were most of our comrades in the camps, with flame-throwers and machine guns. In that case we would have defended ourselves with the guns we had hidden.

HERR BABEL: You said “we prisoners”; who were these prisoners?

BALACHOWSKY: The internees inside the camp.

HERR BABEL: What internees?

BALACHOWSKY: We, the political prisoners.

HERR BABEL: They were supposed to have been mostly German concentration camp prisoners?

BALACHOWSKY: They were of all nationalities. Unknown to the SS, there was an international secret defense organization with shock battalions within the camp.

HERR BABEL: There were German concentration camp prisoners who wanted to help you?

BALACHOWSKY: German prisoners also belonged to these shock battalions—German political prisoners, and in particular former German Communists who had been imprisoned for 10 years and who were of great help towards the end.

HERR BABEL: Very well, that’s what I wanted to know. Then, with the exception of the criminal who wore the green triangle, you and the other inmates, even these of German origin, were on friendly terms and helped each other; is that right?

BALACHOWSKY: The question of the “greens” did not arise, because the SS evacuated the “greens” in the last few days before the liberation of the camp. They exterminated most of them; in any case they left the camp, and we do not know what became of them. No doubt some are still hiding among the German population.

HERR BABEL: My question did not refer to those with the green badges, but to your relations with the German political prisoners.

BALACHOWSKY: The political prisoners, whether they were German, French, Russian, Dutch, Belgian or from Luxembourg, formed inside the camp secret shock battalions which took up arms at the last minute, and took part in the liberation of the camp. The arms that were hidden came from the Gustloff armament factory, which was located near the camp. These arms were stolen by the workers employed in this factory, who every day brought back with them either a butt hidden in their clothes, or a gun barrel, or a breech. And, in secret, with much difficulty, the guns were assembled from the different pieces and hidden. These were the guns we used in the last days of the camp.

HERR BABEL: Thank you. I have no further questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other German counsel wish to ask questions? Have you any questions, M. Dubost?

M. DUBOST: I have no further questions, Your Honor.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness can retire.

[The witness left the stand.]

M. DUBOST: These two days of testimony will obviate my reading the documents any further, since it seems established in the eyes of the Tribunal, that the excesses, ill-treatment, and crimes which our witnesses have described to you, occurred repeatedly and were identical in all the camps; and therefore are evidence of a higher will originating in the government itself, a systematic will of extermination and terror under which all occupied Europe had to suffer.

Therefore I shall submit to you only, without reading them, the documents we have collected, and confine myself to a brief analysis whenever they might give you. . .

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, you understand, of course, that the Tribunal is satisfied with the evidence which it has heard up to date; but, of course, it is expecting to hear evidence, or possibly may hear evidence, from the defendants; and it naturally will suspend its judgment until it has heard that evidence and, as I pointed out to you yesterday, I think, under Article 24e of the Charter, you will have the opportunity of applying to the Tribunal, if you think it right to call rebuttal evidence in answer to any evidence which the defendants may call. All I mean to indicate to you now is that the Tribunal is not making up its mind at the present moment. It will wait until it has heard the evidence for the Defense.

M. DUBOST: I understand you, Mr. President, but I think that the evidence we submitted in the form of testimony during these 2 days constitutes an essential part of our accusation. It will allow us to shorten the presentation of our documents, of which we shall simply submit an analysis or very brief extracts.

We had stopped at the description of the transports and under what conditions they were made, when we started calling our witnesses.

In order to establish who, among the defendants, are those particularly responsible for these transports, I present Document UK-56, signed by Jodl and ordering the deportation of Jews from Denmark. It appears in the first book of documents as Exhibit Number RF-335.

I will now continue presenting a question which was interrupted on Friday, when the session was suspended at 1700 hours. This Document Number UK-56 is a telegram transmitted en clair marked “Top Secret.” It is the 8th in the first book. Its second paragraph reads as follows:

“The deportation of Jews is to be carried out by the Reichsführer SS, who is to detail two police battalions to Denmark for this purpose.

“Signed: Jodl.”

Here we have the carrying out of a political act by a military organization or at least by a leader belonging to a military organization—the German General Staff. This charge therefore affects both Jodl and the German General Staff.

We submitted under Exhibit Number RF-324 (Document Number F-224), during the Friday afternoon session, an extract from the report of the Dutch Government. The Tribunal will find in this report a passage concerning the transport of Dutch Jews detained in Westerbork—which I quote, Paragraph 2:

“All Jewish Netherlanders, whom the Germans could lay their hands on . . . were brought together here. . . . “—Paragraph 3—“Gradually all those interned in Westerbork were deported to Poland.”

Is it necessary to recall the consequences of these transports, carried out in the conditions described to you, when witnesses have come to tell you that each time the cars were opened numerous corpses had first to be taken out before a few survivors could be found?

The French Document Number F-115 (Exhibit Number RF-336), is the report of Professor Richet. In it Professor Richet repeats what our witnesses have said, that there were 75 to 120 deportees in each car. In every transport men died. The fact is known that on arriving in Buchenwald from Compiègne, after an average journey of 60 hours, at least 25 percent of the men had succumbed. This testimony corroborates those of Blaha, Madame Vaillant-Couturier and Professor Dupont.

Blaha’s testimony appears in your document book under the Number 3249-PS. It is the second statement of Blaha. We have heard Blaha. I do not think it necessary to read what he has already stated to us.

Especially infamous is the transport to Dachau, during the months of August and September 1944, when numerous trains which had left France, generally from the camps in Brittany, arrived at this camp with four to five hundred dead out of about two thousand men in a train. The first page of Document Number F-140 states—and I quote so as not to have to return to it again—in the fourth paragraph which deals with Auschwitz: “About seven million persons died in this camp.” It repeats the conditions under which the transports were made and which Madame Vaillant-Couturier has described to you. On the train of 2 July 1944, which left from Compiègne, men went mad and fought with each other and more than six hundred of them died between Compiègne and Dachau. It is with this convoy that Document Number F-83 deals, which we submit as Exhibit Number RF-337, and which indicates in the minutes of Dr. Bouvier, Rheims, 20 February 1945—that these prisoners by the time they reached Rheims were already half-dead of thirst: “Eight dying men were taken out already at Rheims; one of them was a priest.” This convoy was to go to Dachau. A few kilometers past Compiègne there were already numerous dead in every car.

Document F-32, Exhibit Number RF-331, Page 21, contains many other examples of the atrocious conditions under which our compatriots were transported from France to Germany:

“At the station at Bremen water was refused us by the German Red Cross.

“We were dying of thirst. At Breslau the prisoners again begged German Red Cross nurses to give us a little water. They took no notice of our appeals. . . .”

To prevent escape, in disregard of the most natural and elementary feelings of modesty, the deportees were forced in many convoys to strip themselves of all their clothes, and they travelled like that for many hours, entirely naked, from France to Germany. A testimony to this effect is given by our official document already submitted under Document Number RF-301:

“One of the means used to prevent escapes, or as reprisal for them, was to unclothe the prisoners completely.”—And the author of the report adds—“This reprisal was also aimed at the moral degradation of the individual.”

The most restrained testimonies report that this crowding together of naked men barely having room to breathe, was a horrible sight. When escapes occurred in spite of the precautions, hostages were taken from the cars and shot. Testimony to this effect is provided by the same document—five deportees were executed:

“That was how, near Montmorency, five deportees from the train of 15 August 1944 were buried, and five others of the same train were killed by pistol shots by German police and officers of the Wehrmacht at Domprémy (Marne).”

Added to this quotation is that of another official document, which we have already submitted under F-321, Exhibit Number 331:

“Several young men were rapidly chosen. The moment they reached the trench the policemen each seized a prisoner, pushed him against the side of the trench, and fired a pistol into the nape of his neck.”

The same thing prevailed in deportations from Denmark. The Danish Jews were particularly affected. A certain number, warned in time, had been able to escape to Sweden with the help of Danish patriots. Unfortunately, eight to nine thousand persons were arrested by the Germans and deported. It is estimated that 475 of them were transported by boat and truck under inhuman conditions to Bohemia and Moravia to Theresienstadt. This is stated in the Danish document submitted under Document Number F-666, Exhibit Number RF-338.

In connection with this country it is necessary to inform the Tribunal of the deportation of the frontier guards:

“At most places, however, the policemen were dismissed as soon as they had been disarmed. Only in Copenhagen and in the large provincial towns were they retained, and partly by ship and partly by goods vans, taken southwards to Germany.

“The policemen were taken via Neuengamme to the concentration camp at Buchenwald. They were quartered there under indescribably insanitary conditions; a very large proportion of them were taken ill; about one hundred policemen and frontier guardsmen died and several still bear traces of the sojourn.”

When these deportations had been carried out, all the citizens of the subjugated countries of the west of Europe found themselves in the company of their comrades of misfortune of the east, in the concentration camps of Germany. These camps were merely a means of realizing the policy of extermination which Germany had pursued ever since the National Socialists seized power. This policy of extermination would lead, according to Hitler, to installing 250 million Germans in Europe in the territories adjoining Germany, which constituted her vital space.

The police, the German Army, no longer dared to shoot their hostages, but neither of the two had any mercy on them. More and more, were transported in ever increasing numbers from 1943 to German concentration camps, where all means were used to annihilate them—from exhausting labor to the gas chambers.

Censuses taken at various times in France enable us to ascertain that there were more than 250,000 French deportees, of which only 35,000 returned. Document Number F-497, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-339, indicates that out of 600,000 arrests which the Germans made in France, 350,000 were carried out with a view to internment in France or in Germany:

“Total number deported, 250,000; number of deportees returned, 35,000.”

On the following page are a few names of deported French personages.

“Prefects: M. Bussières, M. Bonnefoy, disappeared in the Cap Arcona, Generals: de Lestraing, executed at Dachau; Job, executed at Auschwitz; Frère, died at Struthof; Bardi de Fourtou died at Neuengamme; Colonel Roger Masse died at Auschwitz.

“High officials: Marquis of Moustier, died at Neuengamme; Bouloche, Inspector General of Roads and Bridges died at Buchenwald; his wife died at Ravensbrück, one of his sons died during deportation, his other son alone returned from Flossenbürg; Jean Devèze, engineer of roads and bridges, disappeared at Nordhausen; Pierre Block, engineer of roads and bridges, died at Auschwitz; Mme. Getting, founder of the social service in France, disappeared at Auschwitz.

“Among university professors, names well-known in France, such as: Henri Maspéro, Professor at the College de France, died at Buchenwald; Georges Bruhat, Director of the École Normale Supérieure, died at Oranienburg; Professor Vieille died at Buchenwald. . . .”

It is impossible to name each of the intellectuals exterminated by German fury. Among the doctors we must, however, mention the disappearance of the Director of the Rothschild Hospital and of Professor Florence, both murdered, one at Auschwitz, the other at Neuengamme.

As to Holland: 110,000 Dutch citizens of the Jewish faith were arrested, only 5,000 returned; 16,000 patriots were arrested, only 6,000 returned. Out of a total of 126,000 deportees, 11,000 were repatriated after the liberation.

In Belgium, there were 197,150 deportees, not including prisoners of war; including prisoners of war, 250,000.

In Luxembourg, 7,000 deportees—more than 700 were Jews. There were 4,000 Luxembourgers; out of these, 500 died.

In Denmark (Exhibit Number RF-338, Document Number F-666 already submitted) 6,104 Danes were interned; 583 died.

There were camps within and outside Germany. Most of the latter were used only for the sorting of prisoners, and I have already spoken about them. However, some of them functioned like those in Germany and among them, that of Westerbork in Holland must be mentioned. This camp is dealt with in Document Number F-224, already submitted under Exhibit Number RF-324, which, is the official report of the Dutch Government. The camp of Amersfoort, also in Holland, is the subject of Document Number F-677, which will be submitted as Exhibit Number RF-344.

What we already know through direct testimony of the regime of the Nazi internment camps makes it unnecessary for me to read the whole report, which is rather voluminous, and which does not bring any noticeably new facts on the regime of these camps.

There is also the camp of Vught in Holland. Then in Norway the camps of Grini, of Falstad, of Vlven; that of Espeland, and that of Sydspissen, which are described in a document provided by the Norwegian Government—Document Number F-240, Exhibit Number RF-292, which we have already submitted. The Tribunal will excuse me for not reading this document, which does not give us any information that we have not heard before from the witnesses.

The camps inside Germany, like all those outside Germany which were not transit camps only, should be divided into three categories—which is in accordance with German instructions themselves which fell into our hands. You will find these instructions in your second document book, Page 11. The pages follow in regular order. It is Document Number 1063-PS, USA-492. We read:

“The Reichsführer SS and Chief of the German Police has given his approval for the classification of the concentration camps into various categories which take into account the prisoner’s character and the degree of danger which he represents to the State. Accordingly, the concentration camps will be classified in the following categories:

“Category 1: For all prisoners accused of minor delinquencies. . . .

“Category 1a: For aged prisoners and those able to work under only certain conditions.

“Category 2: For prisoners with more serious charges, but still capable of re-education and improvement.

“Category 3: For major offenders charged with particularly serious crimes. . . .”

On 2 January 1941, the date of this document, the German administration, in dividing the camps into three categories, made an enumeration of the principal German camps throughout Germany in each category. It seems unnecessary to me to revert to the geographical location of these camps within Germany, since my American colleagues, with the help of geographical maps, have already dealt fully with this question.

The organization and functioning of these camps had a double purpose: The first, according to Document Number F-285, was to make good the labor shortage, and obtain a maximum output at a minimum cost. This document is submitted as Exhibit Number RF-346. I shall not read it in extenso, but from Page 14 of your second document book, I shall read the first paragraph:

“For important military reasons . . .”—this is dated 17 December 1942 and coincides with the difficulties encountered in the course of the Russian campaign—“. . . because of great difficulties of a military nature, which cannot be stated, the Reichsführer SS and Chief of the German Police ordered on 14 December 1942 that, by end of January 1943 at the latest, at least 35,000 internees, fit for work, shall be sent to concentration camps.

“To obtain this number the following is ordered:

“As from this date and to 1 February 1943, all Eastern or foreign workers who escaped or broke their contracts, and who do not belong to allied, friendly or neutral states, shall be sent back to concentration camps, by the quickest means possible.”

Arbitrary internments with a view to procuring, at the least possible cost, the maximum output from labor which had already been deported to Germany but which had to be paid since it was under labor contracts.

The organization of these camps was further intended to exterminate all unproductive forces which could no longer be exploited by German industry, and which in general might hinder Nazi expansion. Evidence for this is furnished by Document Number R-91, Pages 20 and 21 of the second document book, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-347, which is a telegram from the Chief of Staff of the Reichsführer SS, received at 2:10 o’clock on 16 December 1942 from Berlin.

“In connection with the increased allocation of labor to concentration camps, ordered to be completed by 30 January 1943, the following procedure may be applied regarding the Jews:

“1) Total number: 45,000 Jews.

“2) Start of transportation: 11 January 1943. End of transportation: 31 January 1943. . . .

“3)“—The most important part of the document—“The figure of 45,000 Jews is to consist of 30,000 Jews from the district of Bialystok; 10,000 Jews from the ghetto of Theresienstadt, 5,000 of which are capable of work and until now have been used for light tasks in the ghetto; and 5,000 Jews generally unfit for work, including those over 60 years of age. In order to use this opportunity for reducing the number of inmates now amounting to 48,000 which is too high for the ghetto, I ask that special powers be given to me. . . .”

At the very end of this paragraph:

“The number of 45,000 includes those unfit for work”—underlined (italics)—“(old Jews and children included). By applying suitable methods, the screening of newly-arrived Jews in Auschwitz should yield at least 10,000 to 15,000 people fit for work.”

This is underlined in the text.

And here is an official document which corroborates the testimony of Mme. Vaillant-Couturier, among various other testimonies on the same question, as to how the systematic selections were made from each convoy arriving at Auschwitz, not by the will of the chief of the camp of Auschwitz, but the result of higher orders coming from the German Government itself.

If it please the Tribunal, my report will cease here this evening, and will be continued tomorrow, dealing with the utilization of this manpower, which I shall endeavor to treat as quickly as possible in the light of the testimonies we have already had.

[The Tribunal adjourned until 30 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]

Wednesday, 30 January 1946

Morning Session

MARSHAL: May it please the Court, I desire to announce that Defendants Kaltenbrunner and Seyss-Inquart will be absent from this morning’s session on account of illness.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Babel, I understand that you do not wish to cross-examine that French witness.

HERR BABEL: That is correct.

THE PRESIDENT: Then the French witness can go home.

M. DUBOST: Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, there is one reason that possibly that French witness ought not to go. I think I saw she was moving out of Court. Could you stop her, please? I am afraid that she must stay for today.

M. Dubost, are you going to deal with documents this morning?

M. DUBOST: Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Would you be so good as to give us carefully and slowly the number of the documents first, because we have a good deal of difficulty in finding them.

M. DUBOST: Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: And specify, also, so far as you can, the book in which they are to be found.

M. DUBOST: With the permission of the Tribunal, I shall continue my description of the organization of the camps and the way in which they functioned. We began last night by submitting to the Tribunal Document Number R-91 which showed that their purpose was: 1) to make good the shortage of labor; 2) to eliminate useless forces.

After Document R-91, which has been submitted under Exhibit Number RF-347, we shall read Document Number F-285, already submitted under Exhibit Number RF-346—second document book. This document is dated 17 December 1942 and is the conclusion of the document which we read to you yesterday. First paragraph:

“For important military reasons, which cannot be stated, the Reichsführer SS and the Chief of the German Police. . . .”

THE PRESIDENT: You read that yesterday.

M. DUBOST: That is correct, Mr. President, Page 18, sixth paragraph, at the top of the page.

“Poles eligible for German citizenship and prisoners for whom special requests have been made, will not be transferred to. . . .”

Last paragraph, Page 19:

“Other papers will not be required for Eastern workers.”

This shows that arrests were made without discrimination in order to obtain labor and that this labor was considered to be so unimportant that it was sufficient to register it under serial numbers.

Now, we will show how this labor was utilized. Men were housed, as the witness, Balachowsky, said yesterday, near factories in Dora in underground shelters which they themselves had dug and where they lived under conditions which violated all the rules of hygiene. At Ohrdruf near Gotha, the prisoners constructed munition factories. Buchenwald supplied the labor for the factories of Hollerith and Dora and for the salt mines of Neustassfurt. The Tribunal will read in Document Number RF-301, at the bottom of Page 45:

“Ravensbrück supplied the labor for the Siemens factories, those of Czechoslovakia, and the workshops at Hanover.”

These special measures, according to the witness, Balachowsky, enabled the Germans to keep secret the manufacture of certain war weapons, such as the V-1 and V-2:

“The deportees had no contact with the outside world. The work of deportees enabled the Germans to obtain an output which they could not have obtained even from foreign workmen.”

The French Prosecution will now submit Document R-129 as Exhibit Number RF-348, which the Tribunal will find in the second document book. It deals with the management of concentration camps:

“The administration of a concentration camp, and of all economic enterprises attached to it, rests with the camp commandant.”

Fifth paragraph, Figure IV:

“The camp commandant alone is responsible for the work carried out by the workmen. This work”—I underline (italics) the word work—“this work must be, in the true sense of the word, exhausting in order to obtain the maximum output.”

Two paragraphs lower on the page:

“The hours of work are not limited. This duration depends on the technical structure of the camp and the work to be done and is determined by the camp commandant alone.”

Further on, the last paragraph, Page 23 of the book:

“He”—the camp commandant—“must combine a technical knowledge of economic and military subjects with wise and clever management of the men so as to reach a high potential of output.”

This document is signed by Pohl. It is dated, Berlin, 30 April 1942.

I should just like to refer again to a document which we have already quoted in relation to the camp of Ohrdruf, and which was submitted under the Number RF-140.

I will now read from Document 1584-PS, Exhibit Number RF-349. This document is signed by Göring and is addressed to Himmler. It definitely establishes the responsibility of Göring in the criminal utilization of this deported labor. I shall read the second paragraph of the second page:

“Dear Himmler:

“. . . at the same time I ask you to keep at my disposal for Air Force armament the greatest possible number of KZ prisoners.”—The initials “KZ” mean concentration camp.

“Experience has so far shown that this labor can be put to very good use. The situation of the war in the air necessitates the transfer of this industry to underground workshops. In such workshops, work and housing can be particularly well combined for KZ prisoners.”

We know then who was responsible for the frightful conditions which the deportees of Dora had to endure. The person responsible is in the dock.

THE PRESIDENT: You did not give us the date of that, did you? Is that 19 February 1944?

M. DUBOST: On the first page you will see that on 19 February 1944 a letter was addressed to Dr. Brandt, referring to teletypes which were sent by the Field Marshal.

THE PRESIDENT: Is it the second letter, the letter that you read? Is the date of that 19.2.44?

M. DUBOST: It is 15 April 1944 on the original, of which this is a photostat.

THE PRESIDENT: And could you tell us what KZ means, the two letters, KZ?

M. DUBOST: 15.4.44 on the original of the teletype, that means concentration camp.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, for the accuracy of the record, it appears that the letter on the second page is not 15 April 1944, but 14 February. Is that not so?

M. DUBOST: Yes. It is 14 February, 2030 hours. It is a teletype, which was booked 15 April 1944. That was the cause of my error.

THE PRESIDENT: But, M. Dubost, were you submitting or suggesting that this letter showed that the defendant, Göring, was a party to the experiments which took place, or only to the fact that these prisoners were used for work?

M. DUBOST: I was not referring to experiments. I was referring to internment in underground camps, like the Dora Camp of which the witness Balachowsky spoke yesterday in the first part of his testimony. With regard to this will to exterminate, of which I have been speaking from the beginning of my presentation this morning, I think it is proved first of all by the text of Document Number R-91, submitted under Exhibit Number RF-347, which I read yesterday afternoon at the end of the session, a letter which has not as yet been authenticated, and by statements made by the witnesses who brought you proof that, at all the camps in which they were, the same methods of extermination by work were carried out.

As far as the brutal extermination by gas is concerned, we have the invoices for poison gas, intended for Oranienburg and Auschwitz, which we submit to the Tribunal under Exhibit Number RF-350. The Tribunal will find translations on Page 27 of the second document book, Document Number 1553-PS.

I must point out, to be quite honest, that the French translation of these invoices is not absolutely in agreement with the German text. Therefore, in the fifth line, instead of “extermination” it should be “purification.”

The testimony of Mme. Vaillant-Couturier showed us that these gases, used for the destruction of lice and other parasites, were also used to destroy human beings. Besides, the quantity of gas which was sent and the frequency with which it was sent, as you can see from the great number of invoices which we offer in evidence, prove that the gas was used for a double purpose. We have invoices dated 14 February, 16 February, 8 March, 13 March, 20 March, 11 April, 27 April, 12 May, 26 May, and 31 May which are all submitted as Exhibit Number RF-350.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you putting in evidence the originals of these other bills to which you refer on this document?

M. DUBOST: I beg the clerk of the Court to hand them to Your Honor, and I request the Tribunal to examine these invoices carefully. They will observe that the quantities of toxic crystals sent to Oranienburg and Auschwitz were considerable; from the invoice of 30 April 1944 the Tribunal will see that 832 kilograms of crystals were sent, giving a net weight of 555 kilograms.

THE PRESIDENT: What is this document that you have just put in?

M. DUBOST: The 30th of April 1944, but I am taking them at random.

THE PRESIDENT: I am not asking the date. What I want to know is what is the authority for this document? It comes, does it not, from one of the committees set up by the French Republic?

M. DUBOST: No, Mr. President. The Document is an American document which was in the American archives, under the Document Number 1553-PS.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, this note at the bottom of Document 1553-PS was not on the original put in by the United States, was it?

M. DUBOST: No, Mr. President, but you have before you all the originals under the number which the clerk of the Court has just handed you.

THE PRESIDENT: Unless you have an affidavit identifying these originals, the originals do not prove themselves. You have got to prove these documents which you have just handed up to us either by a witness or by an affidavit. The documents are documents, but they do not prove themselves.

M. DUBOST: These documents were found by the American Army and filed in the archives of the Nuremberg Trial. I took them from the archives of the American Delegation, and I consider them to be as authentic as all the other documents which were filed by my American colleagues in their archives. They were no doubt captured by the American Army.

THE PRESIDENT: There are two points, M. Dubost. The first is, that in the case of the original exhibit, 1553-PS, it was certified, we imagine, by an officer of the United States. These documents which you have now drawn our attention to are not so certified by anyone as far as we have been able to see. Certainly we cannot take judicial notice of these documents, which are private documents; and therefore, unless they are read in Court, they cannot be put in evidence. That can all be rectified very simply by such a certificate or by an affidavit annexing these documents and showing that they are analogous to the document which is the United States exhibit.

M. DUBOST: They are all United States documents, and they are all filed in the archives of the United States in the American Delegation under the Number 1553-PS.

THE PRESIDENT: The American Document Number 1553-PS has not yet been submitted to the Tribunal and the Tribunal is of the opinion that they cannot take judicial notice of this exhibit without any further certification, and they think that some short affidavit identifying the document must be made.

M. DUBOST: I will request my colleagues of the American Prosecution to furnish this affidavit. I did not think it possible that this document, which was classified in their archives, could be ruled out.

This purpose of extermination, moreover, does not need to be proved by this document. It is sufficiently established by the testimony which we have submitted to the Tribunal. The witness, Boix, spoke these words: “No one is allowed to leave this camp alive . . . . There is only one exit, and that is the chimney of the crematorium.”

In Document F-321, Exhibit Number RF-331, Page 49, at the top of the page, we read:

“The only explanation which the SS men made to the prisoners was that no captive should leave the place alive.”

On Page 179, the paragraph before the last of the French text:

“The SS told us there was only one exit—the chimney.”

On Page 174, the last paragraph before the heading “Gassing and Cremation”:

“The essential purpose of this camp was the extermination of the greatest possible number of men. It was known as the extermination camp.”

This destruction, this extermination of the internees, assumed two different forms. One was progressive; the other was brutal.

In the second document book which is before the Tribunal, we find the report of a delegation of British Members of Parliament, dated April 1945, submitted under Exhibit Number RF-351, from which we quote these words (the third paragraph on Page 29):

“Although the work of cleaning out the camp had gone on busily for over a week before our visit . . . our immediate and continuing impression was of intense general squalor. . . .”

Page 30, the last paragraph but one:

“We should conclude, however, by stating that it is our considered and unanimous opinion, on the evidence available to us, that a policy of steady starvation and inhuman brutality was carried out at Buchenwald for a long period of time; and that such camps as this mark the lowest point of degradation to which humanity has yet descended.”

Likewise, in the report of a committee set up by General Eisenhower, Document L-159, which we submit under Exhibit Number RF-352, Pages 31, 32, and 33 of the same document book, we read:

“The purpose of this camp was extermination. . . .”

Page 31:

“Atrocities and other conditions in the concentration camps in Germany. Report of a committee founded by General Eisenhower under the auspices of the Chief of Staff, General George Marshall, to the Congress of the United States, concerning atrocities and other conditions in concentration camps in Germany.”

Page 32:

“The mission of this camp was extermination, by starvation, beatings, torture, incredibly crowded sleeping conditions, and sickness. The result of these measures was heightened by the fact that prisoners were obliged to work in an armament factory adjoining the camp which manufactured small firearms, rifles. . . .”

The means which were used to carry out this progressive extermination are numerous, as shown in documents which have just been handed to us. These documents, which we are going to submit, have been communicated to the Defense. They consist of printed formulas coming from Auschwitz, concerning the number of blows which could be administered to the internees or prisoners.

These documents will be handed over to the Defense for their criticism. They have just been given to us. I am not able to authenticate their origin today. They appear to me to be of a genuinely authentic character. Photostats of these documents have been given to the Defense.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, the Tribunal thinks that they cannot admit these documents at present. It may be that after you have more time to examine the matter you may be able to offer some evidence which authenticates the documents, but we cannot admit the documents simply upon your statement that you believe them to be genuine.

M. DUBOST: Moreover, everything in the camps contributed to pave the way for the progressive extermination of the people who were interned there. Their situation was as follows: They were exposed to a hard climate; some worked underground. Their living conditions have been brought to light by the testimony which you have heard. When the internees arrived, they were compelled to remain naked for hours while they were being registered or waiting to be tattooed.

Everything combined to cause the rapid death of those who were interned in the camps. A good number of them were subjected to an even harder regime, the description of which was given to the Tribunal by the American Prosecution when they submitted Document Number USA-243 and the following, dealing with the Nacht und Nebel regime, the NN.

I do not think it is necessary to return to the description of this regime. I shall merely submit a new document which shows the rigor with which the NN regime was applied to our compatriots. It appears under the Document Number F-278(b), submitted under Exhibit Number RF-326. It comes from the German Armistice Commission of Wiesbaden and shows that no steps were ever taken in reply to repeated protests by the French population, and even by the de facto government of Vichy, against the silence which shrouded the internees of the NN camps.

I shall now read Paragraph 2 which explains why no reply could be given to families, who had good reason for anxiety:

“This result was foreseen and desired by the Führer. His opinion was that effective and lasting intimidation of the population, which would put a stop to its criminal activities against the occupation forces, would be achieved by the death sentence, or by measures which would leave the offenders’ next of kin and the population generally in the dark as to their fate.”

We will not devote any more time to describing the blocks and the hygienic conditions under which the internees in the blocks lived. Four witnesses, who all came from different camps, have pointed out to you that the hygienic conditions in these different camps were identical and that the blocks were equally overcrowded in all these camps. We know that in all cases the water supply was insufficient and that deportees slept two or three in beds 75 to 80 centimeters wide. We know that the bedding was never renewed or was in very bad condition. We know likewise the conditions in which the medical services of the camp functioned. Several witnesses belonging to the medical profession have testified to this fact before you. The Tribunal will find confirmation of their testimony in Document F-121, Exhibit Number RF-354. We shall read just one line of Page 100 of your document book:

“Because of lack of water the prisoners were obliged to fetch stagnant water from the water closets to satisfy their thirst.”

And then in Exhibit Number RF-331, (Document Number F-321), Page 119 of the French text, third paragraph:

“The surgical work was done by a German who claimed to be a surgeon from Berlin, but who was an ordinary criminal. He killed the patient in each operation. . . .”

Two paragraphs lower:

“The management of the block was in the hands of two Germans, who acted as sick bay attendants—unscrupulous men, who carried out surgical operations on the spot with the help of a certain H . . ., who was a mason by trade.”

After the statements of our witnesses, who in their capacity as doctors of medicine were able to care for patients in the camp infirmaries, it seems superfluous to give further quotations from our documents.

When the workers had been worked to the point of exhaustion, when it became impossible for them to recover, selections were made setting apart those who were of no further use with a view to exterminating them either in the gas chambers, as related by our first witness, Mme. Vaillant-Couturier, or by intracardiac injections, as related by two other French witnesses, Dr. Dupont and Dr. Balachowsky. This system of selection was carried out in all the camps and was, moreover, in response to general orders, proof of which we showed when reading Document Number R-91, submitted under Exhibit Number RF-347.

In the first document book the Tribunal will find the testimony of Blaha, testimony which it will certainly recall and which was received here the 9 January—it is the testimony of Blaha, 3249-PS.

THE PRESIDENT: You have already given this as evidence, have you not?

M. DUBOST: I am not going to read it. I merely wish to recall it to the Tribunal because it forms part of my collection of proofs.

THE PRESIDENT: We do not want affidavits by witnesses who have already given evidence. This affidavit, 3249-PS, has not been put in, has it?

M. DUBOST: No, I am merely recalling the testimony which was given at the session. We shall not submit this document, Mr. President. We are merely utilizing this document to remind the Tribunal that during the session Blaha pointed out conditions existing in the infirmary.

To all these wretched living conditions must be added work, exhausting work, for all the deportees were intended to carry out extremely hard work. We know that they worked in labor squads and in factories. We know, according to the witnesses, that the work lasted 12 hours a day at a minimum, and that it was often prolonged to suit the whim of the camp commandant.

Document R-129 (Exhibit Number RF-348), from which I have already read, emanating from Pohl and addressed to Himmler, Pages 22 and 23 of the second document book, suggests that the working hours should be practically unlimited.

This work was carried out, as the witnesses have told us, in water, in the mud, in underground factories—in Dora for instance—and in the quarries in Mauthausen. In addition to the work, which was exhausting in itself, the deportees were subject to ill-treatment by the SS and the Kapos, such as blows or being bitten by dogs.

Our Document Number F-274, Exhibit Number RF-301, Pages 74 and 75, brings official testimony to this effect. Is it necessary to read to the Tribunal from this document, which is an official document to which we constantly refer and which has been translated into German and into English?

THE PRESIDENT: I do not think you need read it.

M. DUBOST: Thank you, Mr. President. This same document, Page 77 and Page 78, informs us that all the prisoners were forced to do the work assigned to them, even under the worst conditions of health and hygiene. There was no quarantine for them even in case of contagious diseases or during epidemics.

The French Document Number F-392, Exhibit Number RF-330, which we have already submitted, which is the testimony of Dr. Steinberg, confirms that of Mme. Vaillant-Couturier. It is the twelfth document of your first document book. We shall read at Page 4:

“We received half a liter of herb tea; this was when we were awakened. A supervisor, who was at the door, hastened our washing by giving us blows with a cudgel. The lack of hygiene led to an epidemic of typhus. . . .”

At the end of the third paragraph you will find the conditions under which the prisoners were taken to the factories; in the fifth paragraph a description of shoes:

“We had been provided with wooden shoes which in a few days caused wounds. These wounds produced boils which brought death to many.”

I shall now read Document R-129, Pages 22, 23, and 24 in the second document book, and which we submit under the Number . . .

THE PRESIDENT: One moment; the Tribunal will adjourn now for fifteen minutes.

[A recess was taken.]

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, the Tribunal has been considering the question of the evidence which you have presented on the concentration camps; and they are of opinion that you have proved the case for the present, subject, of course, to any evidence which may be produced on behalf of the defendants and, of course, subject also to your right under Article 24-c of the Charter to bring in rebutting evidence, should the Tribunal think it right to admit such evidence. They think, therefore, that it is not in the interests of the Trial, which the Charter directs should be an expeditious one, that further evidence should be presented at this stage on the question of concentration camps, unless there are any particular new points about the concentration camps to which you have not yet drawn our attention; and, if there are such points, we should like you to particularize them before you present any further evidence upon them.

M. DUBOST: I thank the Tribunal for this statement. I do not conceal from the Tribunal that I shall need a few moments to select the points which it seems necessary to stress. I did not expect this decision.

With the authorization of the Tribunal, I shall pass to the examination of the situation of prisoners of war.

THE PRESIDENT: M. Dubost, possibly you could, during the adjournment, consider whether there are any particular points, new points, on concentration camps which you wish to draw our attention to and present them after the adjournment, in the meantime proceeding with some other matter.

M. DUBOST: The 1 o’clock recess?

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, that is what I meant.

M. DUBOST: I shall, therefore, consider as established provisionally the proof that Germany, in its internment camps and in its concentration camps, pursued a policy tending towards the annihilation and extermination of its enemies, while at the same time creating a system of terror which it exploited to facilitate the realization of its political aims.

Another aspect of this policy of terror and extermination appears when one studies the war crimes committed by Germany on the persons of prisoners of war. These crimes, as I shall prove to you, had two motives, among others: To debase the captives as much as possible in order to sap their energy; to demoralize them; to cause them to lose faith in themselves and in the cause for which they fought, and to despair of the future of their country. The second motive was to cause the disappearance of those of them who, by reasons of their previous history or indications given since their capture, showed that they could not be adapted to the new order the Nazis intended to set up.

With this aim, Germany multiplied the inhuman methods of treatment intended to debase the men in her hands, men who were soldiers and who had surrendered, trusting to the military honor of the army to which they had surrendered.

The transfer of prisoners was carried out under the most inhumane conditions. The men were badly fed and were obliged to make long marches on foot, exposed to every kind of punishment, and struck down when they were tired and could no longer follow the column. No shelter was provided at the halting places and no food. Evidence of this is given in the report on the evacuation of the column that left Sagan on 28 January 1945 at 12:30 p.m.

THE PRESIDENT: Where shall we find it?

M. DUBOST: It is in the document book submitted by M. Herzog. It is the report on the evacuation of the column that left Sagan on 28 January 1945. It is Document Number UK-78, submitted under Exhibit Number RF-46. A column of 1,357 British soldiers, including soldiers of all ranks, started out on 28 January 1945 for Spremberg.

THE PRESIDENT: Possibly this is the first document in your document book which has been handed up to us.

M. DUBOST: That is right, Mr. President. I shall now read to you the document on the evacuation of the Sagan Camp from 28 January to 4 February 1945. As the Tribunal has not the copy before it, I pass to Document Number UK-170, Exhibit Number RF-355.

THE PRESIDENT: I am just telling you that I rather think this may be the document, if it begins with “1,357 English prisoners of war. . . .” Does it begin in that way?

M. DUBOST: Yes. The document which you have before you, Mr. President, deals with the transfer of British prisoners. The one about which I wished to speak and from which I wanted to read to you dealt with the transfer of French prisoners. I think that it is not necessary for me to lengthen the session by showing the Tribunal that the British and the French prisoners were treated in the same fashion. I shall, therefore, restrict myself to your document.

“1,357 British war prisoners of all ranks marched out of Stalag Luft III in columns on 28 January 1945, and were thereafter marched for distances varying from 17 to 31 kilometers a day to Spremberg, where they were entrained for Luckenwalde. Food, water, medical supplies, and adequate accommodation were more or less nonexistent throughout the trip. At least three prisoners . . . had to be left at Muskau. . . .”

On the bottom of the page, three lines before the end:

“On the 31st they covered the distance of 31 kilometers to Muskau. It is small wonder that at this stage three men, Lieutenants Kielly and Wise, and Sergeant Burton collapsed and had to be left in the hospital at Muskau.”

Page 2 at the end of the document: