(5 of 6)
The directives concerning co-operation with the Wehrmacht were given to the Chief of the OKW with the approval of Reichsleiter Rosenberg . . . . Jews, Freemasons, and related ideological enemies of National Socialism are responsible for the war which is now being waged against the Reich. The co-ordinated ideological fight against those powers is a military necessity. I have therefore charged Reichsleiter Rosenberg to carry out this task in co-operation with the chief of the OKW. His Einsatzstab in the Occupied Territories is authorized to search libraries, record offices, lodges, and other ideological and cultural institutions of all kinds for suitable material, and to confiscate the said material for the ideological task of the NSDAP and the later scientific research work of the Hohe Schule. The same regulation applies to cultural assets which are in possession of or the property of Jews, or ownerless, or not clearly of unobjectionable origin. The necessary measures within the Eastern territories under the German Administration are determined by Reichsleiter Rosenberg in his capacity as Reichsminister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. -Adolf HitlerMarch 1942: After much negotiation Goering, under the Four-Year Plan, establishes the office of Plenipotentiary for Armaments and War Production and appoints Speer as minister. This is at best a ruse to allow Goering to save face. While officially putting Speer under Goering, Speer will actually continue to answer only to Hitler. (Read)
I am prompted by several partly contradictory requests of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces [OKW], to quote opinions expressed by the Fuehrer, to ask the Fuehrer for a directive in the following question of principle as well as political tactics. The aims of German politics, notably in the Ukraine, have been laid down by the Fuehrer. They are: exploitation and mobilization of raw materials, a German settlement in certain regions, no artificial education of the population towards intellectualism but the preservation of their labor strength, apart from that an extensive unconcern with the interior affairs. This policy might, in the future, possibly lead to severe measures of the Government to safeguard German interest, depending upon the attitude of the population. Now, certain individuals have drawn their own conclusions from this policy which they publicized everywhere with drastic slogans such as "colonials who should be whipped like niggers", "Slavs who should be kept as ignorant as possible", "establishment of churches and sects to stimulate trouble", etc. In spite of a directive to the Reich Commissioner of the Ukraine, approved by the Fuehrer, this talk has spread and everyone who has visited the Ukraine has reported the effects of this talk, namely that the frequently displayed attitude of contempt had a more detrimental effect on the willingness to work than any of the other measures.
The representatives of the Armed Forces have urgently requested us to care for the pacification of the Ukrainian population to prevent sabotage, the organization of gangs, etc. It seems to me that the above-mentioned talk does not serve but rather damage German interests. After continuous observation of the state of affairs in the Occupied Territories of the East I am of the opinion that German politics may have their own, possibly derogatory attitude regarding the qualities of the conquered peoples but that it is not the mission of German political representatives to broadcast measures and opinions which could eventually bring about the sheer desperation of the conquered peoples, instead of promoting the desired productive labor mobilization. In this respect the frequently mentioned comparison with India appears to me entirely wrong. England has largely exploited India and has divided her into power groups; but she has never broadcast this exploitation and division. On the contrary, she has emphasized for many years the blessings she has brought to the country and has--through certain concessions--facilitated such propaganda.
In home politics we had to announce our aims to the whole nation in the most candid form of aggression, by way of contrast to the others. Yet, the political leadership in the East must remain silent where necessary harshness is dictated by German policy. They must remain silent about their possibly derogatory judgment of the conquered peoples. Yes, a clever German policy might be able to do more in the German interest through politically immaterial alleviationís and certain human concessions than through open, thoughtless brutality.
Since in spite of repeated directives, the effects of this former attitude have lately appeared everywhere, I have the intention to send the enclosed decree to the Reich Commissioner of the Ukraine. I ask the Fuehrer rule on this memorandum and on the draft of the decree.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: This document [above] is correct. It was also submitted to me in the preliminary interrogation. It shows that, although I knew that the Fuehrer had not accepted my more far-reaching proposals, I continued to fight for these more far-reaching proposals. And it shows, further, that I saw the Fuehrer personally, so that a few crazy middle-class people in the East would not make derogatory remarks about other nations whose standard of living may to all appearances have been poor at the time. From the many thousands who came in there, I could not expect either sympathy or antipathy, but I could demand one thing of them if their attitude was contemptuous, and that was to keep it to themselves and to act decently.
In conclusion I would like to add something which is extraordinarily decisive, namely, it says here in the last paragraph, "I ask that the Fuehrer rule on this record and the draft decree." This instruction is unfortunately not attached to the document; I believe that much would have been proved from it.
The assurance of the required manpower for the whole war economy, and in particular for the armament industry, necessitates a uniform direction, meeting the needs of the war economy, of all available labor, including hired foreigners and prisoners of war, as well as the mobilization of all unused labor still in the Greater German Reich, including the Protectorate as well as the Government General and the occupied territories. This mission will be accomplished by Reichsstatthalter and Gauleiter Fritz Sauckel in the capacity of Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor. In this capacity he is directly responsible to the Delegate for the Four-Year Plan. (Shirer, Read)
From Goering's IMT testimony: A certain co-operation with regard to the employment program must have existed between the offices of Rosenberg and [Fritz] Sauckel, but certainly not in the sense that Rosenberg could have prohibited the recruiting of eastern workers in contradiction to the Fuehrer's order . . . .
I was present once when Rosenberg spoke about the varying treatment of the Occupied Eastern Territories, of the peoples living there, and their cultural care. As far as I can recall--or better said--I especially recall that the conversation dealt with the establishment or the continuation of a university in Kiev. The Fuehrer agreed with him in his presence, I believe, but when he had gone, the Fuehrer said to me: "That man, too, has his particular worries. We have more important things to take care of now than universities in Kiev."
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: The Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor had the right to give instructions to all top authorities in the Reich, and that included the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. The Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor had been given very definite quotas by the Fuehrer, and when these quotas appeared too large to me--and that was always the case--I would call together the Plenipotentiary General and his representatives and the representatives of the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories for a conference so as to reduce the figures to a somehow bearable size; and the reduction of these quotas did, in fact, often result from such conferences, even though they still remained very high. Officially, however, I could do no more than make such representations . . . .
Yes, the law of 21 March is concerned therewith with workers from the occupied countries who were to be taken to Germany. In Germany there was also a compulsory labor law. It is correct that Gauleiter Sauckel had been given the authority to pass orders to me and to all the supreme Reich authorities. It was my duty to make known and carry through these orders in the Occupied Eastern Territories according to my powers, my judgment, and my instructions.
In special cases, as an exception, immediate steps can be taken to secure or remove items to a safe place in order to evade threatening dangers--that is, danger of collapse of buildings, enemy action, climatic influences, et cetera.April 20, 1942: Sauckel to Rosenberg (Document 016-PS):
The aim of this new, gigantic labor mobilization is to use all the rich and tremendous sources, conquered and secured for us by our fighting Armed Forces under the leadership of Adolf Hitler, for the armament of the Armed Forces and also for the nutrition of the Homeland. The raw-materials as well as the fertility of the conquered territories and their human labor power are to be used completely and conscientiously to the profit of Germany and their allies.
In spite of the fact that most of the German people capable of doing so have already made a most commendable effort for the war economy, more considerable reserves must be found and made available under any circumstances. The decisive measure to realize this is in the uniformly regulated and directed Labor-mobilization of the nation in the war. To reach this goal, the following principles must be worked out and executed:
A. All important Production Programs, actually in progress, must under no circumstances be disturbed by the new measures. On the contrary, they should even be increased.
B. All orders of the Fuehrer, Reichs-Fieldmarshal of the Greater German Reich and the "Minister" for ammunition and armament are to be carried out as quickly as possible. Labor supply necessary for that purpose must be freed and made available either in Germany or in the occupied territories.
C. The task concerning the seed and harvest of German peasantry and all the territories under German control with the view to secure the largest production is just as urgent. The lacking laborers must be made available as quickly as possible.
D. A supply system for the vitally necessary materials for the German people will be assured.
The realization of these principles for labor-mobilization requires:
1. The cooperation of all the forces of the party, economy and the state under coordinated leadership.
2. The best will of all the German people.
3. The most far-reaching measures to imbue all the employed German workmen and women with the highest confidence in the justice of the consideration of their own personal welfare and their salaries as well as the best possible care for their health and shelter under the actual war circumstances.
4. The quickest and best solution of the question of the use of women and youth labor.
Prisoners of War and Foreign Laborers . . . . As far as the beaten enemy is concerned-and even if he has been our most terrible and implacable opponent-it has always been a matter of course to us Germans to refrain from any cruelty and petty chicanery and always treat him correctly and humanely, even then, when we expect useful service from him . . . . Therefore in the Russian camps, too, the principles of German cleanliness, orderliness, and hygiene must be meticulously observed.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I myself insisted up until 1943 on a voluntary recruitment. But in the face of the urgent demands from the Fuehrer I could not maintain this stand any longer and I agreed therefore--in order to have a legal form at least--that certain age groups should be called up. From these age groups all those working who were needed in the Occupied Eastern Territories were to be excluded. But the others were to be brought from all sides with the help of their own administrations in the regional commissariat, that is, the little burgomasters in the Occupied Eastern Territories, and there is no doubt, of course, that to give force to these demands the police stood at the disposal of the administration in the execution of this program.
It was the duty of the Reich commissioner to whom the regional government of the Ukraine was subordinated [Koch] to investigate and to take action, in accordance with the instructions which he had received from me. Sauckel, as the deputy of the Delegate for the Four-Year Plan, had the right to give instructions to me, as Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, and over and above that, he had the right to bypass me and give instructions to the Reich commissioners, a right which he used a few times in giving lectures in the general districts of the Ukraine and of the Eastern territories. Sauckel was not responsible for the execution of these demands, but of course on the basis of the authority given him by the Fuehrer he made the demands so harsh and exact that the responsible regional governments of the commissioner general felt themselves bound by conviction and appearance to back up the recruiting of labor by force . . . .
[Sauckel] had a staff, but I cannot make a statement on the size of it. He took care only that the civil administration had labor offices attached to it, and his requirements as to the civil administration in the East for the direction of these labor offices were forwarded to the administrative offices. To my knowledge he did not have a large organization.
The Fuehrer then repeated several times that Speer's Ministry would be dissolved the moment the peace treaty was signed, and his duties will be assigned to others.August 10, 1942: (Document 3428-PS) Subject: Actions Against Partisans and Anti-Jewish Action in the District General White Ruthenia:
In every encounter with partisans in White Ruthenia, it has been established that in the former Soviet part of the district general as well as in the former Polish part the Jews together with the Polish Resistance Movement in the East and the Red Army men of Moscow are the mainstay of the partisan movement. As a result of this, and in view of the danger to the whole economy, the treatment of the Jews in White Ruthenia is a predominantly political matter which, therefore, should not be solved according to economic but political angles. During detailed consultations with the SS Brigadefuehrer Zenner and the extremely capable Chief of the SD, SS Obersturmbannfuehrer Dr. jur. Strauch, we found that we had liquidated approximately 55,000 Jews in White Ruthenia during the last 10 weeks. In the Minsk-Land area, the Jewry was completely exterminated, without endangering the allocation of labor in any way. In the prevailing Polish Licla area, 16,000 Jews, in Slonim 8,000 Jews, etc., were liquidated. The preparations for the liquidation of the Jews in the Glebokie area were completely disrupted by the arbitrary action by the rear army area, which has already been reported to your office. In the rear army area--I was not contacted--10,000 Jews were liquidated who were scheduled for extermination by us anyway. In the city of Minsk about 10,000 Jews were liquidated on 28 and 29 July, 6,500 of whom were Russian Jews--mainly old people, women, and children--the remainder consisted of Jews unfit for work, most of whom had been sent to Minsk from Vienna, Brno, Bremen, and Berlin in November of the previous year at the Fuehrer's orders.
The Slutzk area was also ridded of several thousand Jews. The same applies to Novogrudok and Vileika. Radical measures still remain to be taken for Baranovichi and Hanzevichi. In Baranovichi, about 10,000 Jews are still living in the town alone, 9,000 of whom will be liquidated next month. In the town of Minsk, 2,600 Jews from Germany have been left over. Besides, all the 6,000 Jews and Jewesses are still alive who have been working, during the action, with the units who had employed them previously. Even in the future the largest Jewish labor force will be in Minsk, since the centralization of armament industries and the burden on the railways makes this necessary for the time being. In all other areas the number of Jews utilized for labor by the SD and myself will be fixed at 800 at the outside but at 500 if possible so that after the completion of the action 8,600 Jews will remain in Minsk and approximately 7,000 in the 10 remaining territories, including the territory Minsk-Land, which is already free from Jews. The danger that the partisans will, in future, derive any important support from the Jews will then have ceased to exist. I myself and the SD would certainly much prefer that the Jewish population in the district general of White Ruthenia should be eliminated once and for all when the economic requirements of the Wehrmacht have fallen off. For the time being, the necessary requirements of the Wehrmacht who is the main employer of the Jewish population are still being considered. The clear anti-Jewish attitude of the SD and the difficult task of the units in White Ruthenia to deliver again and again new Jewish transports from the Reich to their destination, both put an undue strain on the physical and spiritual strength of men of the SD and diverts them from their real purpose, which lies in the White Ruthenian region itself.
I should therefore be grateful if the Reich Commissioner could see his way to stop further Jewish transports until the partisan threat has finally been overcome. I must make 100 per-cent use of the SD against partisans and against the Polish Resistance Movement, both of which demand the use of the full strength of the SD units, which are none too strong as it is. After the conclusion of the anti-Jewish action in Minsk, Dr. Strauch, SS Lieutenant Colonel, reported to me tonight, with justifiable wrath, that without any order from the Reich Leader SS and without notification of the commissioner, a transport of 1,000 Jews has suddenly arrived from Warsaw for use in this air fleet area.
I should like to ask the Reich Commissioner (who has already been advised by teletype), in his capacity as the highest authority in the Ostland, to stop such transports. The Polish Jew is, exactly like the Russian Jew, an enemy of all that is German. He represents a politically dangerous factor, the political danger of which exceeds by far his value as a specialized worker. Under no conditions must Wehrmacht agencies of the army or the Luftwaffe, be allowed to import, without the approval of the Reich Commissioner, into an area under civil administration, Jews from the General Government who might endanger the entire political work and security of the district general. I am in full agreement with the commander of the SD in White Ruthenia, that we are to liquidate every Jewish transport which has not been ordered or announced by our superior officers, so as to avoid further unrest in White Ruthenia. The Commissioner General for White Ruthenia - [Signed] KUBE
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: [Kube was another one of my subordinates]. Yes, that's right [the above document is written to Lohse, the Reich Commissioner for the Eastern territory]. That seems very improbable to me, that it has been found in my office in Berlin. If so, it can be at most only that the Reich Commissioner for the Ostland had sent all his files to Berlin, packed in boxes. It was not in my office at that time, and this letter was also never presented to me. There is stamped here, "The Reich Commissioner for the Ostland," not the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. I stated yesterday, however, that a number of such happenings were reported to me as individual actions in the fighting, and that I received this one report from Slutzk personally, and Gauleiter Meyer was immediately charged to protest to Heydrich and to order an investigation. That presupposes that he, the Gauleiter Meyer, did not know of and did not think of such a general action on order of a central command . . . .
I was informed about that in the beginning by returning personalities, that it was not due to local authorities but to parts of the population. I knew the attitude in the East from before and could well imagine that this was true. Secondly, I have stated that I had been informed that along with executions of various other nests of resistance and centers of sabotage in various cities, a large number of Jews were shot by the police. And then I have treated the case of Slutzk here . . . .
They [Koch in the Ukraine, Lohse and Kube were helping to eliminate or liquidate the Jews, and Brautigam and Leibbrandt, all on my staff; five people at least under my administration were engaged in this kind of conduct] knew about a certain number of liquidations of Jews. That I admit, and they have told me so, or if they did not, I have heard it from other sources. I only want to state one thing: That according to the general law of the Reich, the Reich Commissioner for the Ostland issued a decree according to which Jewry, which of course was hostile to us, should be concentrated in certain Jewish quarters of the cities. And until the end, until 1943-1944, I have heard that in these cities such work was still carried out in these Jewish ghettos to a very large extent. What I wanted to add explains another part of my answer in a very concrete case, namely, a district commissioner in the Ukraine had been accused before the court of having committed blackmail in a Jewish community and having sent furs, clothes, et cetera to Germany. He was brought before court, he was sentenced to death, and was shot.
How necessary this interference was is shown by the fact that this train with returning laborers had stopped at the same place where a train with newly recruited Eastern Workers had stopped. Because of the corpses in the trainload of returning laborers, a catastrophe might have been precipitated had it not been for the mediation of Mrs. Miller. In this train women gave birth to babies who were thrown out of the windows during the journey, people having tuberculosis and venereal diseases rode in the same car, dying people lay in freight cars without straw, and one of the dead was thrown on the railway embankment. The same must have occurred in other returning transports.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: These allegations, which were received by the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, have been constantly checked by Main Department of Labor and Social Policy during all these years and I asked the Tribunal to hear as a witness here the official who always had charge of this question, Dr. Beil. This request has been granted by the Tribunal, but I now hear that Dr. Beil is ill and that he can give a report of his experiences only by a written statement. From my knowledge I can say the following:
These matters were reported to me frequently by Dr. Beil and the so-called Central Department for People of Eastern Nationalities. In a letter which has already been mentioned I transmitted them to Sauckel. Then they were always sent to the Reich Commissioner for the Ukraine or some other administrative officials for investigation and comments. A part of these proved to be correct, a part proved to be untrue and exaggerated; and as far as I know, the Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor, Sauckel, even made the complaints received from me an occasion for his own intervention, as did the German Labor Front, which was responsible for the welfare of all foreign workers in Germany.
There was constant negotiation with the head of this Labor Front, and the Ministry for Occupied Eastern Territories made requests here continuously, until eventually, at the end of 1944, Dr. Ley, as the chief of this welfare department, thought that he could inform me that now after considerable difficulties, really lasting and good conditions had been achieved. I replied to him even then that I could express my pleasure about it, but that I still received reports that here and there things were going wrong. In practice the members of my ministry, together with inspectors of the German Labor Front, went to inspect a number of labor camps in order to investigate the complaints and then have them adjusted by the Labor Front.
The Fuehrer has ordered, among other things, that the 'Special Purpose Staff of Reichsleiter Rosenberg for the occupied areas' should be authorized in the occupied areas under military administration and in the occupied Eastern territories under civil administration--exclusive of the General Government--to
a. Search libraries, archives, lodges, and other philosophical and cultural institutions of all kinds, for material suitable to the accomplishment of his task, and to have this material seized.
b. To cause the seizure of cultural goods which are owned by Jews, or without ownership. . . . .
Except for special cases, in which the safeguarding of endangered works of culture is urgent, efforts will be made to leave them in their present location for the time being. For this purpose, according to reciprocal agreements between the Quartermaster General of the General Staff of the Army and the Einsatzstab of Reichsleiter Rosenberg, the latter has been granted authority to: c) in order to safeguard against damage or destruction in the operational area of the East also such works of culture which do not fall under paragraph b)--especially museum pieces--to protect and/or place them in security.
Independent of the missions of the Einsatzstab of Reichsleiter Rosenberg, according to Section I, a, b, c, the troops and all military offices located in the operational area are instructed now, as before, to preserve valuable art objects if possible and to protect them from destruction or damage.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I believed it my duty to prove, at least very briefly, that my Einsatzstab, as well as the military offices, issued clear directives and orders for the protection, even during these bitter battles, of objects of art of the Russian, Ukrainian, and White Ruthenian people. In principle the Fuehrer specified, as can be seen from information given by the then Field Marshal Keitel, upon order of the Fuehrer, that he reserved for himself the disposition of these works and any decision related hereto.
I do not wish to dispute in any way that I had the hope that at least a large part of these objects of art would remain in Germany, particularly since, in the course of time, many German cultural works were destroyed by particularly severe bombing in the West. These works of art were to be a sort of security for later negotiations. When Reich Marshal Goering, who by directive of the Fuehrer particularly supported this work of the Einsatzstab, earmarked a number of these works of art for his collection, I was--I must say frankly, as the record states--a little uneasy, because with this commission I had taken on a certain responsibility in my name for the total of the confiscated cultural and art objects, and I was, therefore, obligated to catalog them in their entirety and to keep them available for any negotiations or decisions. Therefore, I directed my deputy to make as complete a list as possible of those things which the Reich Marshal, with the approval of the Fuehrer, was diverting for his collection. I knew that Reich Marshal Goering intended later to give this collection to the German Reich and not to bequeath it privately.
In the interrogation record which was produced and read on this point by the French Prosecution there is also a regrettable error to be found. It says that I had been uneasy because Reich Marshal Goering had misappropriated these works of art. In German, the term "entwendet" means as much as to take illegally (to embezzle). What I said, however, was "verwendet," which has a different meaning . . . .
Document 084-PS [above] refers to a number of problems and measures for the improvement of the lot of the workers' families and the energy with which the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories defended a policy of decent treatment of the Eastern peoples with reference to the question of pay, the deduction of taxes, et cetera. But I do not think I need to go any further into detail, since the Plenipotentiary General will probably do that himself. I merely refer to my constant efforts in this direction. I should also like to mention here that there was an agreement between the Plenipotentiary General and the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories according to which Eastern workers, after returning home, were to receive an allotment of land so that they would feel no prejudices against those who had stayed at home.
The Fuehrer has worked out new and most urgent plans for armament which require the quick mobilization of two million more foreign workers. The Fuehrer therefore has granted me, for the execution of his decree of 21 March 1942, new powers for my new duties, and has especially authored me to take whatever measures I think are necessary in the Reich, the Protectorate, the Government General, as well as in the occupied territories, in order to assure, at all costs an orderly mobilization of labor for the German armament industry. The additional required labor forces will have to be drafted, for the most part, from the recently occupied Eastern Territories, especially from the Reichskommissariat Ukraine.
Therefore, the Reichskommissariat Ukraine must furnish 225,000 workers by 31 December 1842 and 225,000 more by 1 May 1942. I ask you to inform Reich Commissioner, Gauleiter, Party Member Koch at once about the new situation and requirements and especially to see that he supports personally in every possible way the execution of this new order. I intend to visit Party Member Koch shortly and I would be grateful if he could inform me as to where and when I could meet him for a personal discussion. Just now though, I ask that the recruiting be taken up at once with all energy and the use of every factor, especially the experts of the labor offices. All directives which temporarily limited the procurement of Eastern Workers are annulled. The Reich procurement for the next months must be given priority over all other measures. I do not ignore the difficulties which exist for the execution of this new order, but I am convinced that with the ruthless use of all resources and with the full co-operation of an concerned the execution of the new demands can be accomplished by the date fixed. I have already communicated the new demands directly to the Reich-Commissioner for the Ukraine by teletype. In reference to our phone-call of today, I will send you the text of the Fuehrer's decree at the beginning of next week.
The question of treatment of the Ukrainians, transported to the Reich as workers of the East worries the bureaus of the Army concerned a great deal. The Commander in Chief urged me to visit some of the camps in the Reich myself as soon as possible and to report to the proper authorities in order to bring about immediate relief. The Army zone is by no means satisfied. All the circumstances of discontent contribute more and more to more people joining the bands or wandering away to the camp of the Bandera esp. other groups hostile to us.
The best propaganda of all would be to treat the workers of the East well; great demands are not made by the Ukrainians anyhow. If their treatment will only be somewhat better and humanely decent these people, who make in part a good impression, will be more than satisfied; these people after all came to the Greater German Reich at least at the beginning of the employment of workers of the East in the Reich of their own free will and full of hope. The unsuitable treatment described in the reports is hardly propaganda and is not profitable for us. After all, we are not at war with the Ukrainian population and certainly not with people who by their voluntary enlistment for labor, help us to win the war.
In the East, Germany is carrying on a three-fold war: A war for the destruction of Bolshevism, a war for the destruction of the Greater Russian empire, and finally a war for the acquisition of colonial territory for colonizing purposes and economic exploitation. With the inherent instinct of the Eastern peoples, the primitive man soon found out also that for Germany the slogan: 'Liberation from Bolshevism' was only a pretext to enslave the Eastern peoples according to her own methods."November 21, 1942: From a letter from Rosenberg to Sauckel:
I thank you very much for your report on the execution of the great task given to you; and I am glad to hear that in carrying out your mission you have always found the necessary support, even on the part of the civilian authorities in the Occupied Eastern Territories. For myself and the officials under my command, this collaboration was and is self-evident, especially since both you and I have, with regard to the solution of the labor problem in the East, represented the same points of view from the beginning.December 21, 1942: From a letter from Rosenberg to Sauckel (Document 018-PS):
The reports I have received show that the increase of the guerilla bands in the Occupied Eastern Territories is largely due to the fact that the methods used for procuring laborers in these regions are felt to be forced measures of mass deportations, so that the endangered persons prefer to escape their fate by withdrawing into the woods or going to the guerilla bands . . . . Even if I in no way deny that the numbers demanded by the Reich Minister for Armament and Munitions as well as by the agricultural economy justify unusual and severe measures, I must, because I am answerable for the Occupied Eastern Territories, emphatically request that, in filling the quota demanded, measures be excluded the consequences and our toleration of which will someday be held against me and my collaborators.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I [told Sauckel that he should make use of his rights and powers and simply not fill these quotas] expressly in a letter [above] to the Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor, and the document has been presented in court. It is dated December 1942; and in that letter I officially drew his attention to many incidents which took place during this labor recruitment drive, and I requested him urgently to help me in putting an end to these intolerable occurrences . . . .
May I summarize and explain briefly? I give therein my agreement to the solution of the problem of the Eastern Workers, and I state that we, Sauckel and myself, hold to the same principles--that is, in reference to the points of Sauckel's program which have just been quoted.
I further state that, in spite of these common principles, various unfortunate occurrences caused me to draw attention to methods not to be tolerated. On Page 2, I complain that, according to reports received by the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, various hospital barracks and camps for sick eastern Workers, which were to be erected for allowing them recovery before returning home, had not come up to expectations, and that the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories had of its own accord communicated with the Reich Commissioner for Hospitals and Health.
On Page 3, with reference to the quotas for the Occupied Eastern Territories, I state that my responsibility earnestly bound me, in filling the quotas, to exclude all methods the toleration and practice of which could one day be held against me and my officials:
"In order to attain this end, and to accord the exigencies due to the special political situation in the Occupied Eastern Territories with the measures of the commissions and staffs of your agencies, I have empowered the Reich Commissioner for the Ukraine, insofar as necessary, to make use of his authority to eliminate recruiting methods which run contrary to the interest of the conduct of the war and war economy in the Occupied Eastern Territories."I knew also that right at the start of the use of propaganda in many regional commissions, a large number of volunteers from the country--not from the cities, from the country-reported, and at this point a legal basis for the prevention of incidents which had taken place in every camp--as shown by the complaints of this letter--was given the Reich Commissioner.
I might here very briefly refer to the other documents quoted by the Prosecution, Document 054-PS--that is a criticism of abuses which reached me from the liaison officer of the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories with Army Group South. It is severe criticism. But I shall refer to Page 1 of the telegram, where it says in Paragraph a:
"With few exceptions, the Ukrainians in the Reich who are working individually-for example, in small workshops, as farmhands or as household employees-are very satisfied with their conditions."But in Paragraph b:
"Those accommodated in collective camps, on the other hand; complain very much."This was an attempt to exert influence on questions and dealings concerning a region under the authority, not of the civil, but of the military administration with its seat in Kharkov, and to exert influence even in German national territory where I, as Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, had no right to issue instructions; but by criticism the lot of all Eastern Workers was always being improved and, to be sure, to the utmost.
The first foreign state visit after the seizure of power took place through the mediation of the foreign policy of office Julius Gombos, who in former years had himself pursued anti-Semitic and racial tendencies and with whom the office maintained a personal connection, had reached the Hungarian Premier's chair . . . . Motivated by reasons of war economy, the office advocated the transfer of raw material purchases from overseas to the areas accessible by overland traffic routes . . . .
The office's initiative in developing, with the help of commercial circles, entirely new methods for the economic penetration of Iran found expression, in an extraordinarily favorable way, in reciprocal trade relations. Naturally, in Germany, too, this initiative encountered a completely negative attitude and resistance on the part of the competent State authorities, an attitude that at first had to be overcome. In the course of a few years, the volume of trade with Iran was multiplied five-fold and in 1939 Iran's trade turnover with Germany had attained first place . . . .
The Arab question, too, became part of the work of the of office In spite of England's tutelage of Iraq, the office established a series of connections to a number of leading personalities of the Arab world, smoothing the way for strong bonds to Germany. In this connection, the growing influence of the Reich in Iran and Afghanistan did not fail to have repercussions in Arabia . . . .
What was lacking was the guiding leadership of a political personality. After manifold groping trials the office believed such a personality to have been found in the former Minister and poet, Octavian Goga. It was not difficult to convince this poet, pervaded by instinctive inspiration, that a greater Romania, though it had to be created in opposition to Vienna, could be maintained only together with Berlin. Nor was it difficult to create in him the desire to link the fate of Romania with the future of the National Socialist German Reich in good time. By bringing continuing influence to bear, the of office succeeded in inducing Octavian Goga as well as Professor Cuza to amalgamate the parties under their leadership on an anti-Semitic basis. Thus they could carry on with united strength the struggle for Romania's renascence internally and her Anschluss with Germany externally. Through the office's initiative both parties, which had heretofore been known by distinct names, were merged as the National Christian Party, under Goga's leadership and with Cuza as Honorary President . . . .
Through intermediaries, the office maintained constant contact with both tendencies . . . . Thus a second government on racial and anti-Semitic foundations had appeared in Europe, in a country in which such an event had been considered completely impossible.
After a protracted illness, my deputy for labor allocation in the Occupied Eastern Territories, State Councilor Peuckert, is going there to regulate the allocation of labor both for Germany and the territories themselves. I ask you sincerely, dear Party Member Rosenberg, to assist him to your utmost on account of the pressing urgency of Peuckert's mission. I may thank you already at this moment for the good reception accorded to Peuckert up to this time. He himself has been charged by me to co-operate fully and unreservedly with all bureaus of the Eastern Territories. Especially the labor allocation for German agriculture and likewise the most urgent armament production programs ordered by the Fuehrer, make the fastest importation of approximately 1 million men and women from the Eastern Territories within the next 4 months, a necessity.
Starting 15 March the daily shipment must reach 5,000 female or male workers, while from the beginning of April this number has to be stepped up to 10,000, if the most urgent programs and the spring tillage and other agricultural tasks are not to suffer to the detriment of the food and of the Armed Forces. I have provided for the allotment of the draft quotas for the individual territories, in agreement with your experts for labor supply, as follows: Daily quota starting 15 March 1943: From General Kommissariat, White Ruthenia--500 people: Economic Inspection, Center--500 people; Reichskommissariat, Ukraine--3,000 people; Economic Inspection, South--1,000 people; total--5,000 people. Starting 1 April 1943, the daily quota is to be doubled corresponding to the doubling of the entire quota. I hope to visit personally the Eastern Territories towards the end of the month, and ask you once more for your kind support.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I fought for about three-quarters of a year for this recruitment of workers in the East to be put on a voluntary basis. From my record of a discussion with Gauleiter Sauckel still in the year 1943, it is very evident that at all times I made efforts to do this. I also mentioned how many millions of leaflets, of posters, and pamphlets I distributed in these countries so that this principle would be carried through. However, when I heard that if the number of German workers who had to go to the front could not be replaced, the German Army reserves would be at an end, then I could not protest any longer against recruitment of certain age-classes, or use of local authorities and forces of the Gendarmerie to assist in this work. That coercion took place here is true and is not disputed. Where an excess took place--and some terrible excesses took place--I did my utmost to prevent it or alleviate it.
By and large you have been informed by SS GruppenFuehrer [US Army equivalent, Major-General] Berger about my conflict with Reich Commissar for Ukraine Koch. Once in Posen I told you my opinion of his so-called policy. I am transmitting to you attachments on the Zuman case about which you have perhaps already heard. Likewise, I am adding the detailed account of this affair from my head Forestry and Wood Section. I request you by return post to give an official pronouncement in this case and what thereby is a concern of higher SS and Police leaders 4 in the case of the Reich Commissar for the Ukraine.Attachments:
Copy to Dr. Lammers: Reich Commissar Koch and the Zuman wooded area. How little the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine Koch felt himself conscientiously bound to his mission was demonstrated at the beginning of his activity in office. From the time of his installation in 9/1941 until the beginning or the middle of 2/1942, he visited the Reich Commissariat only a few times. These visits lasted only a very short time whereupon he would go out to hunt. During this whole time the General Commissar the District Commissar and the Agricultural leader were obliged to perform their duties uninterruptedly in hard winter and under the most difficult circumstances. Soon there were rumors, that the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine wished to appropriate the former Polish Zuman hunting land as his personal hunting reserve. On the occasion of a visit in Berlin the conversation also turned to the matter. Then the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine declared that he had made hunting preparations for the future on the expressed wish of the Minister. Upon my declaration that I had not given a thought to this, he explained that he had received a letter from Regional Leader [Gauleiter] Meyer.
Now, Regional Leader Meyer had informed the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine with respect to future visits from the Reich that he might foresee such a possibility for the guests in case they were hunters. In no way had any instruction for extraordinary preparations been given by this. After that the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine got from me the unequivocal instruction that he was not to undertake anything in this respect Later upon repeated questioning he named every one a defamer who attributed to him the intentions of having a great hunt in Zuman. Nonetheless later there came again the news, this time under the title of a forest-land, that some 70,000 hectares of the Zuman area had been condemned for the Reich Commissar of the Ukraine and it was intended to root up or burn down the villages standing in the area.
Now, I receive the following information from an old Party Comrade who has worked for nine months in Volhnia and Podolia for the purpose of preparing for the taking over of a District Commissariat or of a chief section in General District Volhnia and Podolia. This information goes as follows:
On the order of the highest position it was directed that the whole Rayon Zuman be evacuated. Germans and Ukrainians both stated that this was happening because the Reich Commissar wished to have the whole wooded area Zuman for his beloved hunting. In 12/1942 (when the cold was already severe) the evacuation was begun. Hundreds of families were forced to pack all their possessions over night and were then evacuated a distance of over 60 km. Hundreds of men in Zuman and the vicinity were mowed down by the gunfire ["abgeknallt"] of an entire Police Company, "because they were Communist party members." No Ukrainian believed this, and likewise, the Germans were perplexed by this argument, because if the security of the area were at stake it would have been necessary to execute communistically inclined elements in other Rayons.
On the contrary, it was generally maintained that these men were ruthlessly shot down without judgment because so extensive an evacuation in so short a time was out of the question and furthermore, there was not enough space available at the new place for settling evacuees. The Rayon Zuman is today depopulated on a wide area. The greater portion of the peasants have been removed from the region. Now it suddenly appears that in order to take timber out of this very richly wooded Rayon peasants must be forced to come from a distance of 30 and 40 km., which for the time being is the case in being obliged to carry on the export of wood in the limitless Eldorado ("Banden-Eldorado") developed out of the Zuman wood area.
I maintain that it is necessary in this case, which has become known to me unofficially and which has created the greatest irritation in whole of Volhnia and Podolia, to probe it thoroughly with the responsible police and to let the competent higher SS and Police directors, SS-Obergruppenfuehrer [US Army equivalent, Lt. General] Prutzmann hear about the matter officially. [Signed] A. Rosenberg.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: First, I wrote to the Chief of the German Police and I had to wait for what he, as the official responsible for the measures of security in the Ukraine, might cause to be done. Where I did not receive any further information, I brought this case as a personal complaint before the Fuehrer. This complaint to the Fuehrer was dealt with in the middle of May 1943 and, since it was a rather lengthy complaint probably reached him several weeks in advance, that is, 5 or 6 weeks elapsed between 2 April and the day it was dealt with, the middle or end of May. I believe that is a very short time for dealing with a complaint because: First it had to be investigated rather thoroughly by Lammers and Bormann; then it had to be reported to the Fuehrer; the Fuehrer then had to make his decision and give his directives; and then I was summoned.
In my desire to give you, my Fuehrer, some joy for your birthday I take the liberty to present to you a folder containing photos of some of the most valuable paintings which my special purpose staff [Einsatzstab], in compliance with your order, secured from ownerless Jewish art collections in the occupied western territories. These photos represent an addition to the collection of 53 of the most valuable objects of art delivered some time ago to your collection. This folder also shows only a small percentage of the exceptional value and extent of these objects of art, seized by my service command [Dienststelle] in France, and put into a safe place on the Reich.
I beg of you, my Fuehrer, to give me a chance during my next audience to report to you orally on the whole extent and scope of this art seizure action. I beg you to accept a short written intermediate report of the progress and extent of the art seizure action which will be used as a basis for this later oral report, and also accept 3 copies of the temporary picture catalogues which, too, only show part of the collection you own. I shall deliver further catalogues which are now being compiled, when they are finished. I shall take the liberty during the requested audience to give you, my Fuehrer, another 20 folders of pictures, with the hope that this short occupation with the beautiful things of art which are nearest to your heart will send a ray of beauty and joy into your revered life.
The seizure action began in compliance with the Fuehrer order of 17 Sept 1940. At first those art collections were seized which the Jews, fleeing from occupied territories, left behind in Paris. The seizure action was extended to all remaining cities and villages of the occupied French territory where it was thought that Jewish art collections might be hidden. By using all possible ways and means we discovered and seized all Jewish art collections that were hidden either in Jewish homes in Paris, in castles in the provinces or in warehouses and other storage places. The seizure action vas in part very difficult and tedious and, up to now, not all completed. The escaped Jews knew how to camouflage the hiding places of these objects of art, and to find them was made more difficult by the Frenchmen originally charged with the administration of the hiding places.
The special purpose staff [Einsatzstab] in connection with the security police [Sicherheitsdienst-SD], the squad for the protection of the foreign currency market [Devisenschutzkommando] and by using their own ingenuity succeeded in securing the main part of art collections, left behind by the escaped Jews, and bringing it safely to the Reich. The most important part of the action was the securing of 79 collections of well-known Jewish art collectors in France--the list of collections is attached hereto. Top place on the list is taken by the famous collections of the Jewish family of Rothschild. The difficulty of the seizure action is shown by the fact that the Rothschild collections were distributed over various places in Paris, in Bordeaux and in the Loire castles of the Rothschildís and could only be found after a long and tedious search. Although the action covered the past 2 years, we discovered and secured, through the use of trusted agents, quite a large part of the Rothschild collection in 1942.
Besides the seizure of these complete Jewish art collections, we also searched all vacant Jewish apartments in Paris and other places for single art objects that might have been left behind. The main job in this action was to ascertain all addresses of Jews escaped from the occupied territories, since we had to overcome quite a few difficulties on the part of the French police force which naturally tried their best to retard our progress. During this search through hundreds of single Jewish apartments a large amount of art objects were secured.
These in this manner secured collections and single pieces of art were transferred to central collecting points in Paris, located in the so-called Jeu de Paume and rooms of the Louvre. The art expert of the special purpose staff inventoried, photographed and packed all secured objects of art. Taking the inventory was made more difficult by the fact that all data pertaining to the collection were suppressed by the former owners. For this reason each art object had to he examined separately for origin, place where found, and period. The work is so designed that at its conclusion the finished inventory will represent an unimpeachable document as far as the historical background of the art collection is concerned It will show, on one side, the monetary, and on the other, the historical value. The Jewish owners and collectors only judged these collections by their material value. Consequently they did not recognize the historical value and therefore showed no inclination to make these collections available for research. However, this research has now been accomplished by the sorely understaffed special purpose staff. All their findings were incorporated into 3 temporary books which will serve as basis for one catalogue soon to be compiled.
During the time from 17 Sept 1940 to 7 April 1943, 10 transports of 92 cars or a total of 2775 crates were sent to Germany. The contents of the crates were: paintings, antique furniture, Gobelins, objects of art, etc. Besides all this another special transport of 53 art objects was shipped to the Fuehrerbau in Muenchen, and 594 pieces (paintings, plastics, furniture, textiles) delivered to Reichs Marshal [Goering].
Castle Neuschwanstein was designated as the first shelter. After this castle was filled, the Bavarian administration for state-owned castles and parks saw fit to relinquish several rooms in the castle Herrenchiemsee for further shipments.
Since these 2 shelters were not enough and since the Bavarian administration could not supply any more we rented 2 more in the neighborhood; it was made possible through the intervention of the State Treasurer [Reichsschatzmeister]. We rented several rooms in the former Salesianer monastery at Buxheim near Memmingen in Schwaben and the privately owned castle Kogl near Voecklabruck at Upper Austria [Oberdonau]. The location and condition of these 2 shelters is such that they are perfect in regards to safety against air attack and fire, and can easily be guarded. All art objects are so divided between the 4 shelters that it is possible to continue the inventory and care, and that no large collections of valuable art objects will be concentrated in any one place. All measures for safety are taken care of by the combined efforts of: 1. the Bavarian administration for castles and parks, 2. the central control of the fire prevention police, and 3. the local representatives of State and Party. In this way the highest degree of safety has been achieved.
9455 articles in the aforementioned shelters have been completely inventoried, as of 1 April 1943. The inventory is as follows:
1372 Pieces antique furniture
2224 Small objects of art, including East-Asiatic art.
The inventory in addition to records of seizure and lists of seizure and transport, follows the pattern of the enclosed file card [Karteikarte]. On this file card is noted all information necessary to characterize all objects as to origin, master, technique, time, etc. These file cards together with the extended explanations of the men charged with taking the inventory constitute the basis for the editing of the master catalogue. Besides this there is in preparation a photo-library in one of the central offices in Berlin, as well as in Neuschwanstein. Since the number of technicians was small, the time short, and the necessity of a quick expert from Paris was paramount, only the most valuable objects were inventoried in Paris. Therefore the inventory has to be continued in the shelters. According to the latest count there are approximately 10,000 more objects to be inventoried.
At present there are 400 crates in Paris, ready for shipment which will be sent to the Reich as soon as necessary preliminary work in Paris is completed. Should the present 4 shelters not prove sufficient for consequent shipments, 2 more places, namely the castle Bruck near Linz and the camp Seisenegg near Amstetten on the lower Danube have been prepared.
For reasons of fire prevention all art objects in the shelters had to be unpacked skillfully. These measures were also necessary to accomplish the inventory and to continue with the care of the valuable art objects. Restoration has begun since many needed it when we acquired them. At present a repair shop with all necessary tools is being outfitted in Fuessen in which all paintings pieces of furniture and other objects will be restored, to safeguard preservation. The unpacking, the continuation of the inventory, and the establishment of the photo-library, and too, the editing of the master catalogue, will take considerable time.
The action of seizure [Fassungaktion] in Paris and occupied Western territories will be continued, although on a reduced scale, since there are still new art objects of great value to be found. The administration of the East not only will seize furniture, but also the art objects, which might yet be found there. Here too valuable art objects were found in the last months. These art objects, found during the collection of furniture, were also sent to the shelters and will receive the same treatment as the others. Besides these objects, whose art value is established, hundreds of modern French paintings were seized which from the German standpoint are without value as far as the national-socialist art conception is concerned. These works of modern French painters will be listed separately, for a later decision as to their disposition.
On orders from the Reichs Marshal some of the works of modern and degenerate French art were exchanged in Paris for paints of known value. The exchange was of great advantage to us, Since we received 87 works by Italian, Dutch and German masters who are known to be of great value. We shall continue to trade whenever a chance presents itself. At the completion of the action a proposal as to the disposition of the modern and degenerate French paintings will be presented.
From the IMT testimony of Hans Joachim Riecke: I held both positions [Economic Staff East and in the Ministry of the Occupied Eastern Territories] upon orders from Goering. I was in charge of the food and agriculture department. Rosenberg could not escape the orders given by the Fuehrer. Yet he always advocated that these measures be carried out without coercion against the population, and that they be coordinated with each other. Rosenberg personally wanted to get the Eastern people to cooperate. This was true especially in the matter of cultivating and maintaining their cultural life. For instance, Rosenberg, as far as I know, always intervened for the reopening of the colleges and special schools.
Strong forces were at work counteracting Rosenberg's efforts; and especially in the Fuehrer's headquarters there were Bormann and Himmler, whose opinions were strongly supported by Reich Commissioner Koch, and who in turn was supported by Bormann and Himmler in his work. That led to the fact that a large proportion of the measures which Rosenberg had planned, especially in the Ukraine, were sabotaged by Koch.
I, of course, knew of the existence of concentration camps but not their number and what happened in them. During the years of 1933 and 1934 various representations were made about individual cases of maltreatment. Later, persons who visited concentration camps turned in definite, positive reports. In the last days of April of last year, near Berlin, I met inmates of concentration camps being marched to the rear. Conditions were so terrible that I immediately saw Himmler and asked him not to let these people go on marching but to turn them over to the enemy. That discussion took place in the presence of Field Marshal Keitel. Himmler unfortunately gave only an evasive answer.
About two-thirds of the supplies of foodstuffs from the Occupied Eastern Territories went directly to the Armed Forces. The remaining third was shipped to Germany, and we always considered it as compensatory for the feeding of the foreign workers, whose number was increasing continuously.
The figures mentioned above indicate that again a heavy destruction of the population must be expected. If only 492 rifles are taken from 4,500 enemy dead, this discrepancy shows that among these enemy dead were numerous peasants from the country. The battalion Dirlewanger especially has a reputation for destroying many human lives. Among the 5,000 people suspected of belonging to bands, there were numerous women and children.
By order of the chief of anti-partisan units, SS Obergruppenfuehrer von dem Bach, units of the Wehrmannschaften have also participated in the operation. SA Standartenfuehrer Kunze was in command of the Wehrmannschaften, among whom there were also 90 members from my office and from the District Commissariat of Minsk. Our men returned from the operation yesterday without losses.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Regarding Document Rosenberg-135 [Exhibit USA-289, above] I would like to say the following: It is dated 18 June 1943. On 22 June, I returned from an official visit to the Ukraine. After this official visit I found a pile of notes a rout conferences. I found many letters and, above all, I found the Fuehrer decree of the middle of June 1943 which had already been given verbally, in which the Fuehrer instructed me to limit myself to the basic principles as far as legislation was concerned, and not to interest myself too much with the details of the administration of the Eastern Territories. I was dejected when I returned from this journey and I did not read this document.
But I cannot assume that this document was not at all mentioned to me by my office. My subordinates were so conscientious that I can assume only that in the course of their reporting to me about many documents, they told me that another great disagreement between the Police and Civil Administration was again at hand, as there had been many disagreements of that nature before and I perhaps said, "Please give this to Gauleiter Meyer or give it to the police officer, to the liaison officer so that he can investigate these matters." Otherwise these terrible details would have remained in my memory. I cannot say any more in regard to this subject than I was able to say when it was brought up in the interrogation.
The symptoms created by the recruiting of workers are, no doubt, well known to the Reich Minister through reports and his own observations. Therefore I shall not repeat them. It is certain that a recruitment of labor in the true sense of the word can hardly be spoken of. In most cases it is nowadays a matter of actual conscription by force . . . . But as the Plenipotentiary General for the Allocation of Labor [Sauckel] explained to us the gravity of the situation, we had no alternative. I consequently have authorized the commissioners of the areas to apply the severest measures in order to achieve the imposed quota. That a lowering of morale is coupled with this needs no further proof. It is nevertheless essential to win the war on this front too. The problem of labor mobilization cannot be handled with gloves.June 28, 1943: A partial translation of a report from the chief of Main Office III with the High Command in Minsk sent to Ministerialdirektor Riecke, a top official in the Rosenberg Ministry:
Thus recruitment of labor for the Reich, however necessary, has had disastrous effects, for the recruitment measures in the last months and weeks were absolute manhunts, which have an irreparable political and economic effect . . . . From ... White Ruthenia approximately 50,000 people have been obtained for the Reich so far. Another 130,000 are to be taken. Considering the 2,400,000 total population ... the fulfillment of these quotas is impossible.July 23, 1943: From a memorandum containing the opinion of Dr. Markull on the matter of a Bormann letter:
On 23 July 1942, Reichsleiter Bormann sent the Minister a letter which enumerates in eight paragraphs the principles which the Minister is to follow in administering the Occupied Eastern Territories . . . . Any person reading this correspondence is struck, first of all, by the complete agreement of concepts. The Minister [Rosenberg] apparently was particularly concerned about two points. The first relates to the protection of German rule against the pressure of the Slav race; the second to the absolute necessity of simplifying the administration. These are indeed decisive problems, of which more will have to be said . . . . For the rest, the Minister not only raises no objections against Bormann's principles or even his phraseology; on the contrary, he uses them as a basis for his reply anti endeavors to show that they are already being put into practice. When, however, Bormann's letter was read out by Captain Zimmermann in a conference of the department chiefs, grave concern was shown at once, both on account of the phraseology of the letter and the future conduct of our Eastern policy . . . .
In order to find out whether this concern is justified, it is best to start from a supposition which clearly shows the prevailing situation . . . . Let us suppose Bormann's letter were issued to the Reich commissioners as a ministerial decree. This supposition is by no means unrealistic since the Minister [Rosenberg] appears to hold identical views. Since the Ostland presents a special case, and moreover the Ukraine is, or will become probably the most important region politically, the following discussion will mainly be based on that region . . . . The consequences of a decree of this kind will best be judged by its effect on those men whose duty it is to put it into practice . . . .
Imagine the formulas of Bormann's letter translated into the language of a member of the German civilian administration, and you will get, roughly, the following views: The Slavs are to work for us. Insofar as we do not need them, they may die. Therefore, compulsory vaccination and German health service are superfluous. The fertility of the Slavs is undesirable. They may use contraceptives or practice abortion, the more the better. Education is dangerous. It is enough if they can count up to 100. At best an education which produces useful coolies for us is admissible. Every educated person is a future enemy. Religion we leave to them as a means of diversion. As for food, they will not get any more than is necessary. We are the masters; we come first. These sentences are by no means overstatements. On the contrary they are covered, word by word, by the spirit and the text of Bormann's letter. Already at this point the question arises whether such a result is desirable in the interests of the Reich. It can hardly be doubted that these views would become known to the Ukrainian people. Similar opinions prevail already today . . . .
But there is no real need to assume a fictitious decree as was done in Paragraph 1. The above-mentioned concept of our role in the East already exists in practice. The Reich Commissioner for the Ukraine has expounded his views of the Ukrainian people governed by him in three successive speeches at the inauguration . . . .
And he goes on to quote those speeches, which have been referred to before this Tribunal.
To be exact, we are here among Negroes; the population is just dirty and lazy . . . . I may add that Kreisleiter Knuth, whom the Gauleiter still retains in spite of the gravest accusations against his professional integrity, declared, in conversations on the Kiev question, that Kiev ought to be depopulated through epidemics. Altogether it would be best if the superfluous part of the population starved to death . . . .
Finally among the district commissioners 80 percent oppose the views described above. In many conferences with the general commissioners they emphasized that the population ought to be treated decently and with understanding . . . . For the rest the only effect of the false concepts of the 'master race' is to relax the discipline of our officials . . . . However, it must be examined whether there is not in fact an agreement between the policy hitherto pursued and the Bormann letter in the sense that the decrees quoted above and the other instructions of the ministry are to be understood merely as tactical moves, whereas in fact there is no divergence of opinion. The Minister's reply [Rosenberg's] of 11 August might be considered to point in this direction. In answer to this it should be pointed out that the Minister knows very well that it is not possible to reorganize a continent of the size of Russia by means of political tactics and by wearing the mask of a liberator, but only by applying a statesmanlike conception appropriate to the political conditions . . . .
It is necessary to point once more to the obvious similarity between the opinions professed by Koch and the instructions given in the Bormann letter . . . . Without wishing to criticize in any way the statements of Reichsleiter Bormann it is yet necessary to point out that the wording of his letter does not always bring out clearly the importance of the issue at stake. A phrase like 'brisk trade in contraceptives' had better not be brought into connection with the name of the Fuehrer. In the same way abrupt phrases like 'vaccination of the non-German population is completely out of the question ... would hardly seem to be entirely in keeping with the importance of the historical problems involved here . . . . The statements set out above may appear very sharp. They are, however, dictated by concern and duty.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I received this report from Dr. Leibbrandt, and I would like to make the following explanation. I wrote an appeasing letter so that I could bring about a pause in the constant pressure under which I was kept, and I would dike to anticipate and say that my activity, and the decrees which I issued after this letter, did not change in any way; but, on the contrary, decrees were issued setting up a school system and for the further continuation of health control. I will discuss it further in my reply. I wrote a letter to the Fuehrer, but did not use the wording of Bormann's letter. I wrote appealingly to the Fuehrer that I was not doing any more than could and had to be done. I wanted to ward off an attack from headquarters for I knew it would come because I did more for the Eastern peoples than for the German people-that I was demanding more doctors than the German people had for their sick, that I was doing more in my capacity as Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories for the health problem and thereby for the Eastern people than German doctors could do for the German people. The attack had reached such proportions that Koch finally accused me of promoting a policy of immigration. That was the reason why the conflict arose shortly thereafter and was brought to the Fuehrer.
I welcomed very much that my collaborators always had the courage to contradict me and give me their opinion, even concerning something I myself requested. Dr. Leibbrandt came and said to me, "Herr Reich Minister, that certainly is not in accord with what we are all doing here." I said, "Dr. Leibbrandt, please calm yourself. I have written an appeasing explanation. Nothing will be changed. Later I will also speak to the Fuehrer personally about these matters."
The author--I rather say Dr. Leibbrandt--when he gave me this memorandum, read it through in a hurry saying, "There seems to be a gentleman who believes that I cannot do anything else but what I consider right." But in this case I am facing a serious conflict, and I will maintain my position as I consider it right. First, I concurred with my collaborator, Dr. Leibbrandt, in the idea that ministerial decrees in that sense would never be released by me. Second, I regulated by a decree the school system in the Ukraine including a 4 year elementary school, trade school, and professional colleges . . . .
May I say something about this document? This memorandum, as I stated in the beginning, is based on the supposition of a possible ministerial decree. It obviously uses phrases which Bormann had used in his letter, but my letter which I sent to the Fuehrer cannot possibly contain these phrases. It may have contained appeasing statements to the effect that I did nothing in the Occupied Eastern Territories for which I was reproached; that is to say, that I did nothing for the German population but that I established large health departments, school departments, education departments, et cetera; and that now I was absolutely compelled to simplify these administrative departments. But that Bormann made these statements, that he used these phrases! It is regrettable that he expressed himself in this way; and during the last few years we were compelled to observe an unnecessarily large number of similar instances.
I may add briefly that he himself stated that the Minister apparently intervened to clarify these things there, but I want to indicate one decisive point, and that is that the opinions advanced by Bormann were also familiar to Koch's circle. During these tragic years my entire efforts were directed against Koch's personal circle, especially in the training of administrative leaders; and that can be seen from Paragraph 3, where it says, "Moreover, at least 80 percent of the district commissioners are opposed to the views described."
On Page 4, it says the great majority of the administrative leadership corps set their hopes in the Minister--that is, myself--and I endeavored and tried to fulfill these hopes of the administrative leadership corps, which I attempted to educate by means of my decrees because these thousands of people could not know the vast Eastern territories, these thousands who, even in the fight against Bolshevism, sometimes had no very clear conception of the state of things in the East; and I must emphasize the fact that the author here says that the decree issued by the Minister on 17 March 1942 reemphasizes his former decrees in a more rigorous form. The decree of 13 May 1942 attacks the view that the Ukrainians were not a race at all and attacks the false conception of superiority. Thus, these are two decrees which I have not received and which are here; and furthermore, Mr. Prosecutor, I say that he points out quite correctly that of course the Minister--that is, myself--knows very well that such a continent has to be treated differently than in accordance with these suggestions which we have heard. As a consequence of these proceedings, however, I have positively established that after that correspondence between Koch and Bormann I introduced the orderly setup of a school administration in the Ukraine by issuing a detailed decree. I spoke to the Fuehrer personally about this and told him--that decree of May 1943 is in my file--I told him that it was impossible to work in the East with this kind of talk from Koch and his following.
The Army Group "Center" has the intention to apprehend 40-50,000 youths at the ages of 10 to 14 who are in the Army Territories, and to transport them to the Reich. This measure was originally proposed by the 9th Army. These youths cause considerable inconvenience in the Theatre of Operations. To the greater part these youths are without supervision of their parents since men and women in the theatres of operations have been and will be conscripted into labor battalions to be used in the construction of fortifications. Therefore Children's Villages are to be established behind the front, for the younger age groups, and under native supervision. To collect adequate experiences the 9th Army has already established such a Children's Village and has achieved good results also from the political viewpoint. Army Group further emphasizes that these youths must not be allowed! to fall into the hands of the Bolsheviks in case of a withdrawal since that would amount to reinforcing the enemy's potential war strength.
This measure is to be strongly fortified by propaganda under the slogan: Care of the Reich for White-Ruthenian Children, Protection against Brigandry. The action has already started in the 5 kilometer zone. The Youth Bureau has already had preliminary talks with the Organization Todt and with the Junkers works. It is intended to allot these juveniles primarily to the German trades as apprentices to be used as skilled workers after 2 years' training. This is to be arranged through the Organization Todt, which is especially equipped for such a task through its technical and other set-ups. This action is being I greatly welcomed by the German trade since it represents a decisive measure for the alleviation of the shortage of apprentices.
The Chief of the Political Directing Staff, SS-Obergruppenfuehrer Berger, submitted the action to the Minister on the 10th of the month. The Minister feared that the action would have most unfavorable political consequences, that it would be regarded as abduction of children, and that the juveniles did not represent a real asset to the enemy's military strength anyhow The Minister would like to see the action confined to the 15-17 year olds.
Following are the arguments against this decision of the Minister:
1. This action is not only aimed at preventing a direct reinforcement of the enemy's military strength but also at a reduction of his biological potentialities as viewed from the perspective of the future. Not only the Reichsfuehrer of the SS has voiced these ideas but also by the Fuehrer. Corresponding orders were given during last year's withdrawals in the southern sector.
2. A similar action is being conducted at the present time in the territory of the Army Group Ukraine-North (General Field Marshal Model). Even in this politically especially preferred Galizian territory recruiting measures were being taken with the aim to collect 135,000 laborers to be organized in battalions for the construction of fortifications. The youths over 17 were to be detailed to the SS Division and those under 17 to the SS Auxiliary. This action which has been going on for several weeks has not led to any political disturbances. While it is true that the population has to be recruited by force, they do show a certain understanding later on, for this measure of purely military necessity. Provided, of course, that they receive correct treatment, good food and lodgings, etc.
The unified organization of parents in labor battalions makes it possible to extract this group as a whole in the case of withdrawals which are quite conceivable in the case of Army Groups "Center" and South. The children already transported into the Reich would serve as a suitable incentive.
3. As to Army Group "Center" this measure is to be initiated in Army Territories, that is to say in those territories not under a civil administration. During a conference with the Chief of Staff of the 9th Army I gained the impression that the action will be executed, if necessary, even without the consent of the Reich Ministry for the Occupied Territories of the East.
4. If the Ministry for the East should not support or execute this action, it is expected that the procurement will be undertaken by the GBA [Generalbevollmaschtiger fuer den Arbeitseinsatz- General Deputy for the Mobilization of Labor]. Army Group "Center" and especially 9th Army thought it of greatest importance not to let the children be put to work in the Reich through the General Deputy for the Mobilization of Labor. They preferred the offices of the Reichs-minister for the Occupied Territories of the East [RMfdbO].
Only through these offices did they believe to have a guarantee for correct and proper treatment. This desire of the Army Group is a particular expression of confidence towards the Ministry for the East. Army Group desires that the action be accomplished under the most loyal conditions, as had been done previously in the case of recruiting for the SS Auxiliary. They further desired special arrangements regarding care, mail exchange with parentís, etc. As far as possible the children are to remain in groups according to their village communities, then be collected in small camps in the Reich where they would be at the disposal of trade establishments. These technical matters have already been discussed. They can be accomplished with the help of the offices of the Hitler Youth through the Youth Bureau of the Ministry. Thus the Ministry is also able to exercise political guidance over the juveniles and has them at its disposal at all times. If I should re-occupy the territory the Ministry of the East could return the juveniles in the proper manner. Together with their parents they would then most likely represent a positive political element during the reconstruction of the territory.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Document 031-PS [above] appears to me personally to be of particular importance since the Prosecution has stated with reference to this document that I am accused of having approved of the planning and carrying out of the biological weakening of the Eastern peoples, according to a statement at the end of this document. Only the first and last portions of this document have been quoted; and I must ask that I be permitted to inform the Tribunal of the true state of affairs.
At the beginning of the document is the observation that the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, after he had once turned down the suggestion that young people should be transferred from Army Group Center to the Reich, was once more presented with the problem and under very special conditions and prerequisites. In the actual record it states that, in view of the fact that a large number of adults were working and had to leave the young people behind without any care, Army Group Center had the intention of resettling these youths and taking care of them in a proper manner. At the end of Page 1 of this document and at the beginning of Page 2, it states that the Minister was afraid that this action might have very unfavorable political repercussions, that it would be considered as deportation of children, and that he desired it to be greatly curtailed.
Under Point 4 it states that if the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories would not support that action and carry it out, then Army Group Center--which, of course, was in no way subordinate to the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories--would carry out the action on its own authority. This army group, however, was addressing itself to the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories in particular, because in their opinion--as it says literally, "the guarantee for correct political and fair dealing would be assured." The army group would like to see this action carried out under the most inoffensive conditions. As far as possible these children should be accommodated in villages, in groups, or collected in small camps. Later on, from there they were to be placed at the disposal of small workshops. Then, later on, it states:
"In the event of a reoccupation of the territory, the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories can then in a proper way return these youths, who then, together with their parents would surely be a positive political factor in the reconstruction of that territory."At the end it states that under these conditions the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories agreed to take care of these youths. I agreed because I was fully conscious of the fact that through the Youth Department of the Ministry of the Occupied Eastern Territories I would, wherever possible, be able to guarantee the greatest care for these children. I want to add that on one occasion I paid a visit to the great works at Dessau, where four and a half thousand youthful workers were employed, and where there was a separate children's camp under the care of White Ruthenian mothers. I could ascertain that these workers were wearing very good clothes, that they were being taught mathematics and languages by Russian women teachers, and that the children's camp tended by Russian women had a kindergarten which was looked after by the Hitler Youth. In the evening of that day the White Ruthenian woman who cared for the children thanked me, with tears in her eyes, for the humane care being given them.
I would like to point out a phonetic error that has appeared in this record. This city--as I said--was Dessau, and not Odessa as is stated in the record. I never visited Odessa in all my life.
. . . . 2. The removal of Cultural property. A great deal of material from museums, archives, institutions and other cultural establishments was systematically removed from Kiev in the autumn of 1943. These actions to safeguard the material were carried out by Special Purpose Staff RR, as well as by the individual directors of institutes, etc., at the instigation of the Reich Commissar."
At first, a great deal of the evacuated property was taken only to the areas of the rear: later on, this material was forwarded to the Reich, When the undersigned, towards the end of September, received the mission from the Cultural Division of the Reich Commissar to take out of Kiev the remaining cultural effects the most valuable materials, from a cultural point of view, had already been removed. During October some forty carloads of cultural effects were shipped to the Reich. In this case it was chiefly a question of valuables which belonged to the scientific institutions of the National Research Center of the Ukraine.
These institutions are at present continuing their work in the Reich and are being directed in such a manner that at any given moment they can be brought back to the Ukraine. The cultural valuables which could not be promptly safeguarded were plundered. In this case, however, it was always a question of less valuable material, as the essential assets had already been systematically removed in accordance with orders received. In October, 1943, factories, workshops, plants and other equipment were removed from Kiev by the order of the military Commander of the town, but where it was taken, I do not know . . . . At the time the Soviets entered the city there was nothing valuable, in this respect, left in the city.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: The Document 161-PS deals with an order for the bringing back of certain archives from Estonia and Latvia. The Soviet Prosecution have concluded from this that there was a plundering of the cultural treasures in these countries. I would dike to state that the instructions ' which I had read from Document 1015-PS requested in an unequivocal manner that all these cultural objects were to remain in the country. And that was done. I permit myself to refer to the date of that document, which is 23 August 1944 when combat activity had spread over this territory, and when these cultural objects and archives were to be safeguarded from combat activities. It was here a matter of having the aforementioned archives sheltered in Estonian country estates. That is, they were still to remain in the country itself, even in the midst of combat activity. As far as I know some of these archives were still brought to Germany later and I believe they were safeguarded in Schloss Hochstadt in Bavaria.
Document 076-PS has been used by the Prosecution as proof of a plundering of the library treasures in Minsk. We are concerned here with a report that a deputy of the commander of the rear area had issued and which was directed to the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories. From this report we can see in fact that some destruction had taken place in certain libraries, but that that was a consequence of troops having been quartered there, because the city of Minsk had been destroyed and the billeting facilities were overburdened.
But then under Number 1, and again under other paragraphs, it is expressly shown that posters had been put up everywhere, and that these things were put under control and were not to be touched after that. It is added that any further removals would have to be considered as plundering.
Under Number 2, I would like by all means to point out that it has been confirmed here that the most valuable part of this library of the Academy of Sciences came from the library of the Polish Prince Georg Radziwill, which the Soviet authorities had taken from the occupied Polish territory to Minsk and had' incorporated into the library of the Academy of Sciences long before any other state or other German offices were active in that area. There are a number of other documents, namely, 035-PS and' several others already submitted to the Tribunal, which make'' statements about the taking back of cultural objects from the Ukraine too. The date on these documents, that is, the year 1943, shows also that these cultural objects remained' in the country until then, as had been ordered, and that only when combat activity made it necessary, was a withdrawal carried out. Document 035-PS says, on Page 3, Number 5:
"The infantry division"--concerned--"attaches great importance to the further evacuation of valuable institutions since the Armed Forces can in no way protect this area sufficiently and bombardment by artillery is to be counted on shortly."It then adds:
"Wehrmacht equipment, means of transportation, et cetera, shall be provided as far as possible by the...infantry division."The evacuation then actually took place under artillery bombardment, and hence cultural objects which had come from Kharkov and other cities also during combat, were transferred only then to Germany.
The War Effort Task Force Command formerly stationed in Minsk must continue, under all circumstances, the calling up of young White Ruthenian and Russian men for military employment in the Reich. In addition the Command has the mission of bringing young boys of 10-14 years of age into the Reich.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I do not know just what the translation of the document was, but the opposite was true. I wanted to prevent anything from happening in any action in the operational zone which might, under certain circumstances, be of gravest importance for many children. Then, upon the request of the Army Group Center--which anyway would have done it on its own--I took over the care of these children on condition that I take most scrupulous care of them and care for their own mothers, that they have contact with their parents, and so that they might be returned to their homeland again later on. That is certainly the exact opposite of what the Prosecution has submitted from this document here. That [that by removing these children out of the East we will be doing more than one thing; we will be destroying the biological potentiality of those people in the East] is contained in the first point of the Prosecution and it was already read. I have made it clear by reading the whole document that my approval did not depend at all on that point, that in the first report I definitely refused that as an argument, and that only after hearing other information did I find a method, for which the women thanked me despite the fact that not I but the Hitler Jugend in Dessau and elsewhere deserve the credit for taking care of them in this way.
I do not want at all to claim for myself any such sentimental phraseology [as "benign and humane towards these people"]. However, in the midst of this terrible war in the East, which brought with it the continual murder of German employees and German agricultural officials, I only tried to carry on an intelligent policy and to induce the people to heartfelt voluntary cooperation.
The development of the military situation in the West has caused me to instruct my special purpose staff in Amsterdam, to remove the library of the social institute there, to the Reich by the quickest way. However, great difficulties have arisen to that effect due to the proximity of the front lines. I have therefore put at the disposal of the Chief of my main work division Netherlands, SS Major Schmidt-Staehler, the special purpose chief Gummert with full powers for the execution of this task. Since this library is mainly composed of a unique collection of the writings of the European Marxism, it is therefore irreplaceable for our ideological-political struggles. I request therefore sincerely from you to be of assistance to my deputies Schmidt-Staehler and Gummert, with your authority as Reich's commissar for the Netherlands, in case the difficulties arising by the removal of the library cannot be surmounted by them.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I remember this library very well, for I was told about it. To my knowledge it represented the establishment of a spiritual center of the Second International in Amsterdam, in which the history of social movements in various countries was to be summarized in a library . . . . It was at first agreed that this library would remain in Holland, and that the cataloging and classifying of this collection, which was not yet classified, was to take place in Amsterdam. In the course of the next few years this took place in Amsterdam. Only in the year 1944, when either the invasion had already begun or was surely imminent, when bombing attacks also increased in this area, part of this library was taken to Silesia; the other part, to my knowledge, did not get through, but remained in Emden; and the third part, I believe, was not removed.
In the face of current developments in the Eastern problem, I beg you to submit the accompanying letter to the Fuehrer personally. I consider the way and manner in which the German policy in the East is being handled today as very unfortunate; while I have not participated in the negotiations, I am nevertheless made responsible for them. Therefore I beg you to submit my letter to the Fuehrer as soon as possible for his decision.
In the letter to the Fuehrer it says:
For observation and the steering of this development I have created regional offices for all the Eastern peoples in the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, which can now, after many tests, be regarded as suitable for their purposes and well set up. They also contain representatives from the various regions and races concerned, and if it seems in the interest of German policies, these may be recognized as a special national committee.
From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: As time went by I received much information regarding instances of acts of violence committed in the East. Upon investigating, it was found very often that these reports did not conform with the facts. In this case this report appeared to me quite credible so I took the opportunity to report it to the Fuehrer directly, considering that I was having trouble with Gauleiter Koch.
Apart from other questions--schools in the Ukraine, establishment of technical schools, and certain personal statements of Koch which I submitted as a complaint--I also submitted this report.
At the audience with the Fuehrer, Reich Commissioner Koch submitted an opinion of the Chief of the Forest Administration of the Ukraine. From this it appeared that these forest districts had to be used for supplying timber either for railway ties or other emergency needs. And since various guerrilla units and partisans had flocked together in these wooded districts and such a task was extremely dangerous owing to the insecure situation, it was established that Koch, not in the interest of the hunting earlier contemplated, but for this reason, had ordered a cleaning up of this district; and in the course of this cleaning up a considerable number of partisans had been found and they had been shot. The remaining population from these forest districts had been resettled, and, as Koch added, in addition to this statement of the Chief of the Forest Administration, a number of these resettled persons had even expressed gratitude for the fact that they had received better soil to work than they had in these forest areas. On receiving these reports from Koch the Fuehrer shrugged his shoulders and said:
"It is difficult to decide here. According to the statement of the Forest Administration for the Ukraine that I have here, I must leave the matter alone, and the other decisions regarding Ukrainian policy will be sent to you."This happened in July in the shape of a decree which is also in my files, but which, unfortunately, has not been found. It is a decree about which the witness Lammers has spoken and which in principle states that the Reich Minister should cause no obstruction, the Minister for the East should confine himself to basic matters, should submit his decrees to the Reich commissioner for his opinion and, in the event of conflict, the decision of the Fuehrer must be secured.
After this decree of the Fuehrer I made a renewed attempt to represent the views which I considered right. But, of course, I will not deny that on several occasions, due to pressure from the Fuehrer's headquarters, I became a little weary. And when it was said, and said in clear-cut terms, that I was apparently more interested in these Eastern peoples than in the welfare of the German nation, I made some appeasing statements; but my decrees and the further application of my instructions continued in the old way. As I have now been able to ascertain, I reported to the Fuehrer personally on eight different occasions on this matter, and I submitted written petitions and formulated my decrees with this aim in mind.
When then, in 1944, the ReichsFuehrer-SS, too, occupied himself not only with police affairs, but also with policy in the Eastern territories, and when I had not been able any longer to report to the Fuehrer's headquarters, since the middle of November 1943, I made one last attempt to make a suggestion to the Fuehrer regarding a generous Eastern policy. At the same time, I asked very clearly, in the event of a refusal, to be relieved from any further work . . . .
This document [Document Rosenberg-14, above] is a letter to Dr. Lammers of 12 October 1944, at the beginning of which it is said that:
"In the face of current developments in the Eastern problem, I beg you to submit the accompanying letter to the Fuehrer personally. I consider the way and manner in which the German policy in the East is being handled today as very unfortunate; while I have not participated in the negotiations, I am nevertheless made responsible for them. Therefore I beg you to submit my letter to the Fuehrer as soon as possible for his decision."Dr. Lammers then immediately transmitted this letter to the Fuehrer's secretary, Bormann. In the letter to the Fuehrer it says on Page 2:
"For observation and the steering of this development I have created regional offices for all the Eastern peoples in the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, which can now, after many tests, be regarded as suitable for their purposes and well set up. They also contain representatives from the various regions and races concerned, and if it seems in the interest of German policies, these may be recognized as a special national committee."These central offices mentioned here had the task of seeing to it that the representatives of all Eastern peoples received personally the complaints of their countrymen who were in sovereign German territory and presented them to the Ministry of the Occupied Eastern Territories which in turn would take up these complaints with the German Labor Front authorities, with the Police, or the Plenipotentiary General for the Allocation of Labor.
On Page 5 it says then:
"I have informed the Reich Minister and the Chief of the Reich Chancellery what the Eastern Ministry has done in the sphere of political direction in a letter dated 28 May 1944, and I am asking you, my Fuehrer, to have the contents read to you."This is a reference to a further statement.
On Page 6 it states:
"I am asking you, my Fuehrer, to tell me whether you still desire my activity in this field, for since it has not been possible for me to report to you orally, and the problems of the East are brought to you and discussed from various sides, I must, in consideration of this development, assume that you perhaps consider my activity as no longer necessary. In addition rumors are spread by sources unknown to me of the dissolution of the Ministry of the Occupied Eastern Territories; in fact it is said that these rumors are used in official correspondence to the highest Reich authorities. because of various demands which have been made. Under such circumstances fitting work is not possible, and I ask you to give me directives as to how I should act in view of the state of affairs which has developed."In the middle of the next paragraph, I point out the following, from ideas that I voiced first in my speech of 20 June and in my protest during the meeting of 16 June. And it says here literally:
"This plan provided that in order to mobilize all the national forces of the Eastern peoples, they should be promised in advance a certain autonomy and the possibility of cultural development, with the aim of leading them against the Bolshevist enemy. This plan, which in the beginning I ventured to assume you approved of, has not been carried out, because the peoples were treated in a way that was politically opposite to this. Solely and only because of the agrarian order of 1942, approved by you, has their willingness to work been maintained to the end in view of a certain hope of acquiring property."Attached to this letter to the Fuehrer there is the suggestion for the adjustment of the Eastern policy, which is reiterated for the last time. And in Paragraph 2 in the middle of Page 2 it says:
"These regional and local offices for the peoples of the East, attached to the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, are, in the name of the Reich Government, to be recognized by him as national committees at a date to be fixed by the Fuehrer. The "National Committee" is to be understood by the Reich Government to mean that these authorized spokesmen can submit the wishes and complaints of their peoples." . . . .It was the question of my further tasks for the political and psychological treatment of several millions of Eastern workers in Germany; it was furthermore a question of refugees who came from the Eastern territories and from the Ukraine to Germany, and of the settlement of economic problems, and above all I still had the hope even at that hour that a military change also might still occur in the East. No, I did not know that [the war was lost in October of 1944] . . . .
Not quite exactly like that [did this memorandum confirm that it was a fight against the partisans], but it said that this forest district had to be utilized for the necessary supply of lumber for the Armed Forces or the Administration and that these needed forests harbored many restless partisans and guerrilla bands. Therefore there was great danger for the workers in these districts and it had come to shootings between them and partisans and guerrilla bands; and, since one could not watch over all of them, a transfer of certain groups from these forest districts into forest areas farther south took place. Koch added that then many of these people who had been transferred expressed their thanks for having received better land than they had had before. That was the information that Koch had given. I only want to point out that we are dealing here with an assistant of the Forestry Office in Berlin, who had added that on the basis of his reports. What Koch had produced was a report from the Chief of the Forest Administration in the Ukraine, himself. A description of actual conditions by the Forestry Administration was included, and I could not protest against such a presentation since it appeared well-founded, and I had to admit to myself that I had made a mistake in protesting.
In order not to delay the liquidation of companies under my supervision, I beg to point out that the companies concerned are not private firms but business enterprises of the Reich, so that directives with regard to them, just as with regard to Government offices, are reserved to the highest authorities of the Reich. I supervise the following companies . . . . Seizure of all agricultural products as well as commercial marketing and transportation thereof . . . .
During this period, the Z.O.[Central Trading Corporation East] together with its subsidiaries has seized: Grain 9,200,000 tons, meat and meat products 622,000 tons, linseed 950,000 tons, butter 208,000 tons, sugar 400,000 tons, fodder 2,500,000 tons, potatoes 3,200,000 tons, seeds 141,000 tons, other agricultural products 1,200,000 tons, and 1,075,000,000 eggs. The following was required for transportation: 1,418,000 freight cars and 472,000 tons shipping space.
Major War Criminals. UJ (Churchill and FDR refer to Josef Stalin as Uncle Joe, or UJ, in their correspondence) took an unexpectedly ultra-respectable line. There must be no executions without trial otherwise the world would say we were afraid to try them. I pointed out the difficulties in international law but he replied if there were no trials there must be no death sentences, but only life-long confinements.October 22, 1944: FDR to Churchill:
Your statement of the present attitude of Uncle J. towards war criminals, the future of Germany, and the Montreux Convention is most interesting. We should discuss these matters, together with our Pacific war effort, at the forthcoming three-party meeting.December 20, 1944: Gottlob Berger, an informant in Himmler's employ, sends off the following to his master:
Ref: Reich Minister for the no longer occupied Eastern Territories: It is established that Reichsleiter Rosenberg has paid eight visits since 1 December to Reichsleiter Dr Lammers in order to preserve his ministerial office under all circumstances. According to my information ... Rosenberg is said also to have been received by the Fuehrer . . . . I am keeping the battle in every way on the Rosenberg-Ribbentrop level . . . . I am trying to keep myself, under all circumstances, out of this power struggle so that I may be all the more active in penetrating it.April 13, 1945: Former US Attorney General and now Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court, Justice Robert Jackson, speaks before the American Society of International Law:
We have been a freedom-loving people. Our Constitution and our philosophy of law have been characterized by a regard for the broadest possible liberty of the individual. But the dullest mind must now see that our national society cannot be so self-sufficient and so isolated that freedom, security, and opportunity of our own citizens can be assured by good domestic laws alone ...May 2, 1945: Executive Order of US President Truman:
Associate Justice Robert H. Jackson is hereby designated to act as the Representative of the United States and as its Chief of Counsel in preparing and prosecuting charges of atrocities and war crimes against such of the leaders of the European Axis powers and their principal agents and accessories as the United States may agree with any of the United Nations to bring to trial before an international tribunal ...May 19, 1945: Rosenberg is arrested by British soldiers searching for Himmler. Though he was never a member of the post-Hitler Flensburg cabinet headed by fellow defendant Doenitz (who would not have him), he is discovered recovering from a drink-induced sprained ankle in a hospital in Flensburg. Rosenberg's diaries and correspondence, as well as detailed descriptions of German operations in the East and the looting of occupied lands, will soon be discovered behind a false wall in a castle in Bavaria. (Heydecker, Taylor)
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