Alfred Rosenberg

(3 of 6)

March 29, 1941: A statement by Rosenberg from the Volkischer Beobachter:

For Germany the Jewish question is only then solved when the last Jew has left the Greater German space. Since Germany with its blood and its folkdom has now broken for always this Jewish dictatorship for all Europe and has seen to it that Europe as a whole will become free from the Jewish parasitism once more, we may, I believe, also say for all Europeans: For Europe the Jewish question is only then solved when the last Jew has left the European continent.

April 2, 1941: Hitler proposes commissioning Rosenberg for the position of Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: May I state with regard to this that at the very beginning of April--as far as I can remember it was 2 April 1941--the Fuehrer summoned me in the morning and explained to me that he regarded a military clash with the Soviet Union as inevitable. As reasons he quoted two points: first, the military occupation of Romanian territory--that is to say, Bessarabia and North Bukovina; second, the continual reinforcing for a long time and on a gigantic scale of the Red Army along the line of demarcation and in Soviet Russian territory generally. These facts were so striking that he had already given the relevant military and other orders and had decided to assign me as a political adviser in a decisive capacity. Thus I was faced with a fait accompli, and an attempt even to discuss the matter was countered by the Fuehrer with the remark that the orders had been given and that scarcely anything could be altered in the matter, whereupon I told the Fuehrer that, of course, I wished the best of luck to the German arms, and I was at his disposal for the political advice which he desired.

Immediately afterwards I chaired a meeting of some of my closest assistants, since I did not know whether the military operations would be starting very soon or later on. We made a number of drafts concerning the possible treatment of political problems and possible measures to be taken in the territories to be occupied in the East. These drafts have been submitted here. On 20 April 1 received a preliminary task, which was to form a central department for dealing with Eastern questions and to get in touch with the highest Reich authorities concerned with these matters.

April 7, 1941: Recommendations as to the personnel for the Reich Commissariats in the East and for the Political Central Office in Berlin (Document 1019-PS):

Surveying the requirements in regard to personnel as a whole, the following considerations must be taken into account. On psychological and historical grounds it would not appear politic to put the immediate political direction of the Baltic Provinces into the hands of the Balts. Although it must be admitted that they know the conditions best and also know the languages, so many historical memories and complexes are involved, that it would appear inexpedient if we are to attain our final political goal to allow people who formerly had dealings with the Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians once more to appear politically in positions of authority. On the other hand, it is necessary to send people to these parts who are intimately acquainted with the problems of the East and North and are also able, from the point of view of temperament to bring a particular understanding to bear on the situation there. When, in addition, there are still interests in connection with Scandinavia and Finland, indeed altogether a Hanseatic trend, then in the opinion of the undersigned, such persons would be most suited for the political direction of the Eastern Provinces. On these grounds the undersigned suggests the following to the Fuehrer: As Reich Commissar for the Baltic Provinces and White Russia: Gauleiter Hinrich Lohse, Kiel. Headquarters: Riga.

Further positions to be filled: a Reich Commissariat for the Ukraine, a Reich Commissariat for the Caucasus and a Reich Commissariat for the Don and Volga Areas. Here also it would appear necessary to entrust this task to people who already have a previous knowledge of the Russian, Ukrainian and Caucasus problems, who have been in contact with the country and people, and if it is at all possible, who speak Russian, the language with which one can make oneself generally understood there. The undersigned suggests to the Fuehrer as Reich Commissar for the Ukraine and Caucasus, as they may be suitable: Secretary of State Backe and Stabsleiter Arno Schickedanz. Party member Backe himself comes from the Caucasus and will quickly be able to acquaint himself with the conditions, speaks fluent Russian and has never quite broken off his connections with the Caucasus. Pg. Schickedanz has been working in the Russian sphere for 20 years, formerly with Dr. Scheubner-Richter and then with the undersigned. He helped the latter with politically cautious advice, particularly in connection with Norway. He knows many of the people concerned with Russia, the Ukraine and the Caucasus so that he appears suitable for one of these posts, in order to survey the political situation correctly and serve the political aims for which we are to strive. If the undersigned could make a choice for this recommendation, he would name Backe for the Caucasus and Schickedanz for the Ukraine. As second in command to the Reich Commissar in the Caucasus, the Commissioner for the 4 year plan would have to name someone to lead an authoritative Oil Commission. For the Ukraine an agricultural department of particularly capable men would have to be established. Headquarters of the Reich Commissariats would be Kijew and Tiflis.

Prime Minister D. Klagges is recommended as Reich Commissar for the Don-Volga Area. As a result of his initiative in connection with the establishment of the Hermann-Goering Works in Salzgitter he knows the problems of mining and as Prime Minister of Brunswick he has collected all the administrative experience. At the moment the undersigned can call to mind no one else who speaks Russian. Headquarters of the Reich Commissar: Rostov on Don.

In addition, it will eventually become necessary to occupy with troops not only Petersburg, but also Moscow. This occupation will definitely differ considerably from that in the Baltic provinces, in the Ukraine and in the Caucasus. It will be accomplished by suppressing any Russian and Bolshevik resistance and will necessitate an absolutely ruthless person, both as regards the military representation and also the eventual political direction. The problems arising from this need not be detailed here. If it is not intended to maintain a permanent military administration, the undersigned would recommend the Gauleiter of East Prussia, Erich Koch as Reich Commissar in Moscow.

A consideration of the problems as a whole show that in order to overcome them a Central Office to direct the work of the various Reich Commissariats is urgently necessary. First of all in order to relieve the Fuehrer, so that he does not have to deal continuously with four or five Administrative Offices in the East, and secondly since it is necessary, from an authoritative and political, point of view, for all these areas to be surveyed and supervised by one office, and for the tasks allotted to be carried out in the manner desired by the Fuehrer by means of directives to the personalities in charge. The Fuehrer instructed the undersigned, on 4/2/1941, to establish a central political office to deal with work in the East in anticipation of the eventuality mentioned in the introduction to this memorandum. Bearing in mind the political aims described above, the most important task of such a central political office, immediately subordinate to the Fuehrer, would be the adaptation or actual preparation of suitable leaflets, as the first proclamation of the Military Commander. It would then have to take care that all proclamations and decrees issued later by the political directors of the Occupied Territories conform to the varied aims, that measures resulting from this central attitude, both cultural and economic, are in agreement with these, that mistakes which do not correspond to the political intention are, if possible, avoided or, if they have already occurred, remedied in a sensible manner. Furthermore the office would have the task of writing and editing the necessary enlightening articles on the history and relations with Germany of the various territories, or of finding collaborators who can write them. It would also be a good thing to have translations made of those articles and speeches which can be shown to have expressed a German-Ukrainian solution in the course of the national-socialist struggle. Scientific literature on this subject has been in preparation by colleagues of the undersigned for a considerable time. A basic work has been published ("Um die Neugestalt Europas"--"The Changed Face of Europe," Central Party Publishers), a new book is in preparation and extensive research on the whole continental European question is well under way. In addition speeches must be composed in German, Ukrainian, Georgian etc., to be made into gramophone records. A large number of loudspeaker cars must be available in view of the widespread illiteracy still existing.

In addition this Central Office would already have to have such authority, that the most efficient of the top-ranking Reich Authorities concerned, of the O.K.W. as well as the authorities controlling the 4 year Plan would be at the disposal of its chief, so that all future measures necessary for the realization of our political goals, political, economic, cultural, scientific and propaganda, may be instituted even now in such a way as to further these central ideas. Only by such a central direction of basic, decisive orders will it be possible to avoid confusion later on and will the enormous difficulties and misunderstandings unavoidably connected with the occupation of almost devastated areas be reduced to the minimum.

The undersigned therefore makes the suggestion to the Fuehrer that when the eventuality arises this Central Office, which is fully empowered and is to be set up, should be changed into a component authority immediately subordinate to the Fuehrer, i.e.--in order to avoid a repetition of existing official designations--into a General Protectorate for the occupied Eastern territories with its seat in Berlin. The Head of this Protectorate could then obtain the official designation of "The Protector-General of the German Reich for the Occupied Eastern Territories." [The name Commissar General is already in use, e.g. as the subordinate of the Reich Commissar in Holland.] The Fuehrer would then nominate and recall the Reich Commissar for the Baltic Provinces, the Ukraine Caucasia and the Don-Volga area (eventually Moscow and Turkestan) on the recommendation of the Protector-General. The official communications of all top-ranking Reich Authorities to the Reich Commissariats in the occupied territories would go through the Protectorate-General, whereby all technical, economic, etc., directions would be issued entirely authoritatively by the top ranking Reich officials in question. It is therefore not necessary to found a new large Reich Office, but rather a political center for the East provided with all necessary powers, in combination with an Inspectorate and State Secretariat to control all questions concerning the connection between the Protector-General and the Reich Commissariats and top-ranking Reich Authorities.

Should the Fuehrer agree to the proposal to alter the political central office, which is to be established shortly and with whose direction the undersigned is charged, when the eventuality arises into a General protectorate under the same direction, then the undersigned recommends Gauleiter Dr. Meyer of Munster as Secretary of State. Dr. Meyer is an old national-socialist fighter who sees the political problems clearly and from a national-socialist point of view. He has occupied himself so exhaustively in the last few years with State Law and administrative measures, that he can also carry out this work in addition to his burdensome work as Gauleiter. It is clear that from Dr. Meyer extraordinary service would be asked, but on the other hand he would certainly consider such an appointment a particular honor.

The Fuehrer has already granted to the undersigned the budget for a central office. If the Fuehrer approves the above trains of thought and proposals, as they are or in modified form, they could be set in motion immediately.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I have stated that I know from Koch's writings from 1933 and 1934 that he had a special liking for the Russian people. I knew Koch as a man of initiative in East Prussia. I had to expect that at the center of Moscow and around Moscow a very difficult job would have to be done. For here was the center of gravity of Bolshevism and here under certain circumstances the greatest resistance would arise. Then I did not want to have Koch in the Eastern territories and not in the Ukraine because I did not believe I had to fear such resistance there. There was, on one side, Koch's devotion to the Russians, on the other side he was a man with economic initiative; finally I knew he was supported in such a manner that he was intended for some job in the East by the Fuehrer as well as by the Reich Marshal . . . .

This expression ["a ruthless man" - referring to Koch ] refers here rather to initiative and, of course, to the view that he would fight any Bolshevik resistance ruthlessly; but not in the sense that he would suppress a foreign race or try to exterminate foreign cultures ... for the Ukraine I wanted State Secretary Backeor my Chief of Staff Schickedanz, as can be seen from this document. I wanted State Secretary Backe because he is a German from the Caucasus and speaks Russian, knows the entire southern territory and probably could have worked very well there. I did not get him and I was forced to accept Koch, I would like to say' against my personal protest in the meeting of 16 July 1941.

April 15, 1941: Documentary Memorandum for the Fuehrer by Rosenberg (Document 001-PS):

Concerning: Jewish Possessions in France - In compliance with the order of the Fuehrer for protection of Jewish, cultural possessions, a great number of Jewish dwellings remained unguarded. Consequently, many furnishings have disappeared, because a guard could, naturally, not be posted. In the whole East, the administration has found terrible conditions of living quarters, and the chances of procurement are so limited that it is not practical to procure any more. Therefore I beg the Fuehrer to permit the seizure of all Jewish home furnishings of Jews in Paris, who have fled, or will leave shortly, and that of Jews living in all parts of the occupied West, to relieve the shortage of furnishings in the administration in the East . . . .

2. A great number of leading Jews were, after a short examination in Paris, again released. The attempts on the lives of members of the armed forces have not stopped, on the contrary they continue. This reveals an unmistakable plan to disrupt the German-French cooperation, to force Germany to retaliate, and, with this, evoke a new defense on the part of the French against Germany. I suggest to the Fuehrer that, instead of executing 100 Frenchmen, we substitute 100 Jewish bankers, lawyers, etc. It is the Jews in London and New York who incite the French communists to commit acts of violence, and it seems only fair that the members of this race should pay for this. It is not the little Jews, but the leading Jews in France, who should be held responsible. That would tend to awaken the Anti-Jewish sentiment.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Document 001-PS [above] contains, at the beginning, information to the effect that in the East accommodations were found to be so dreadful that I was proposing that ownerless Jewish homes in France and their furniture should be made available for that purpose. This suggestion was approved in a decree issued, by order of the Fuehrer, by the Reich Minister and Chief of the Reich Chancellery on 31 December 1941.

In the course of the ever increasing bombardment in Germany, I considered that I no longer could take responsibility for this, and thus I made a suggestion that this furniture should be placed at the disposal of bombed out victims in Germany-which amounted to more than 100,000 people on certain nights that emergency aid would be given to them.

In the report of the French Document Book it is stated in the seventh paragraph how the confiscation was carried out: that these deserted apartments were sealed, that they remained sealed for some time in the event of possible claims, and that then the shipment to Germany was carried out.

I am aware that this, no doubt, was a serious encroachment on private property; but here again, in connection with previous considerations, I thought about the implications and, finally, of the millions of homeless Germans. I want to emphasize in this connection that I kept myself well informed; that the homes, their owners, and the main contents in the way of furniture were recorded in detail in a big book, as a basis for possible negotiations at a later date.

In Germany the matter was so arranged that those people who suffered damage by bombing paid for these furnishings and household goods, which were placed at their disposal; and these deliveries were deducted from the claims which they had against the state. That money was paid into a special fund administered by the Minister of Finance.

The Document 001-PS contains under Number 2 a suggestion that I myself consider a serious charge against me. This is a suggestion that in view of many murders of Germans in France, not only Frenchmen should be shot as hostages, but that Jewish citizens also were to be called to account. I should like to say that I considered these shootings of hostages, since they were announced publicly, a permissible measure under special circumstances in wartime. The fact that this sort of thing was being done by the Armed Forces appeared to me according to the result of the usual investigations, the more so since it was taking place in a territory, a State with which the German Reich had signed an armistice.

Secondly, this happened during a period of excitement, due to the war which had just broken out with the United States of America and to our recollection of the report from the Polish Ambassador, Count Potocki, dated 30 January 1939, which the Tribunal has forbidden to be read.

In spite of everything, however, I must say that I consider this suggestion as a personal injustice. Looking at it from the legal side, I would like to point out that in Document 1015-PS, under letter Y. there is a letter from the Reich Minister and Chief of the Reich Chancellery, which is dated 31 December 1941, and in which it says:

"Your memorandum dated 18 December 1941 has been submitted to the Fuehrer. The Fuehrer has agreed in principle with the suggestion under 1. A copy of that part of the memorandum which deals with the utilization of Jewish household goods I have sent to the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and the Reich Commissioner for the Occupied Netherlands, together with a letter of which a copy is attached hereto."

In this matter Point 1 was accepted and tacitly, though just as emphatically, Point 2, which deals with this suggestion, was turned down. This suggestion, therefore, had no legal consequences. Later on I never again referred to this suggestion, and I must say that I had forgotten all about it until it was again put before me here . . . .

I stated that it [my suggestion] was humanly unjust. I considered the shooting of hostages, which was publicly made known by the Armed Forces, as an obviously generally accepted fact under the exceptional conditions of war. These shootings of hostages were published in the press. Therefore, I had to assume that according to international law and certain traditions of warfare this was an accepted act of reprisal. As can be seen from the document, I have spoken about the fact that certain sabotage and murder of German soldiers was being committed here, so that good future relations, which I also aimed for, between Germany and France would be poisoned forever. For that reason this letter was written, although I regret it from the human point of view.

April 21, 1941: Bormann to Rosenberg (Document 072-PS):

Dear party member Rosenberg! In connection with the received draft of the decree I attended, as ordered, a speech made by SS Brig. Gen. Heydrich. The latter called attention to the fact that the sentence, "In the confiscationís undertaken, or to be undertaken in the Reich area, of the property of ideological opponents, the same rules apply", anticipates a regulation which has so far not been introduced and would for the first time set a precedent through this decree-draft. Moreover, the regional governments [Gauleitungen] are never allowed to carry out confiscationís.

GruppenFuehrer Heydrich further pointed out that he could under no circumstances recognize the attempted regulation in the final sentence of your decree-draft, since there existed some objections to it. The scientific treatment of the ideological opposition could only be done in conjunction with the political police work. Only the material should be handed over to you, and the seminar respectively. If a speedier treatment through your office is necessary, duplicates and photocopies should be put at your disposal.

The Fuehrer emphasized that in the Balkans the use of your experts would not be necessary, since there were no art-objects to be confiscated. In Belgrade only the collection of Prince Paul existed, which would be returned to him completely. The remaining material of the lodges, etc. would be seized by the agencies of GruppenFuehrer Heydrich.

The libraries and art objects of the monasteries, confiscated in the Reich, were to remain for the time being in these monasteries, insofar as the Gauleiterís had not determined otherwise. After the war, a careful examination of the stock could be undertaken. Under no circumstances, however, should a centralization of all the libraries be undertaken, the Fuehrer has repeatedly rejected this suggestion.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Document 075-PS [not shown] is a special circular letter by the Chief of the Party Chancellery, setting forth his personal views on the relationship of National Socialism to Christendom' As well as I remember, this document deals with the following: I had once heard that Bormann had sent a letter of such contents to a certain Gauleiter and also copies of it to all the Gauleiter. I asked him to let me know about it. After much delay I finally received this circular letter. As a Party circular, I considered it improper in form and substance. I wrote Bormann--and I believe the letter I sent to him should be found in my records--that I did not consider a circular letter of that sort suitable or proper and I added, in my own handwriting so that it would be taken more seriously, that in my opinion the Fuehrer would not approve a circular letter of this sort. Later I spoke with Bormann about this personally and told him that each one of us had the right to define his position towards this problem, but official Party circulars--and especially in this form-were impossible in my opinion. After this conversation, Bormann was greatly embarrassed, and--as I incidentally heard from my Codefendant Schirach--this circular letter, according to him, was rescinded and declared null and void. I can make no statement about this, however.

Document 072-PS [above] is a letter from Bormann with reference to the matter of investigating the libraries of monasteries confiscated by the State. I was not told the political reasons involved in each case; but I did hear that the police were demanding the additional right to take over the investigation of this sort of thing. This was a problem that brought me into conflict with Himmler in those years. I considered it completely impossible that such investigation was to be brought under police control as well, and that motivated me, as can be seen from Document 071-PS, to place myself in opposition to Bormann in this matter.
This Document 072-PS gives Bormann's answer to me, in which he points out that Heydrich insisted absolutely on continuing this research and said--I quote: "The scientific refutation of antagonistic philosophy can only be carried out after preliminary police and political preparation." I considered this attitude absolutely untenable, and I protested against it.

These are the pertinent comments that I have to make on these numerous documents. I refused to write official Party tracts of religious semblance or to have catechisms written by my Party offices. I always strove to take what I considered to be a National Socialist attitude in not considering my office a "spiritual" police force; but the fact remained that the Fuehrer had charged Bormann with the official representation of the Party's attitude toward the church.

My answer to all of these letters is missing, and I do not recall whether I replied to everything, or whether I gave these answers orally to Bormann at conferences. But despite the fact that all of these answers are lacking, the Prosecution have stated that both of us, that is Bormann and I, had issued decrees for religious persecution and had misled other Germans into participating in these religious persecutions.

I would like to summarize and state on principle that this is ultimately a thousand-year-old problem of the relationship between secular and church power, and that many states have taken measures against which the churches have always protested. When in modern times we look at the laws of the French Republic under the ministry of Combes, and when we look at the legal system of the Soviet Union, we see that both have supported the officially promoted atheist propaganda in tracts, newspapers, and caricatures.

Lastly, I would like to say that in all cases the National Socialist State, so far as I know, gave to the churches more than 700 million marks annually out of the tax receipts for the maintenance of their organizational work, and that up to the end . . . .

It is difficult to say just which reasons [for the enmity between myself and Bormann] played a role here. That this hostility was as deep as it finally revealed itself to be, specifically when dealing with Eastern problems, I realized only later, much later. Ultimately I had to admit, of course, that in a large movement many temperaments and many views may exist, and I did not except myself from having shortcomings and faults which could be criticized by others. I did not believe that differences and opinions could lead to a hostility of such proportions that it would result in undermining the official position of the opponent.

April 25, 1941: Chancellery Rosenberg Receipt 5 May 1941 (Document 070-PS) - To the Fuehrer's Commissioner for the Supervision of the entire mental and world-philosophical training and education of the NSDAP:

Subject: National Socialist School Services We are inducing schools more and more to reduce and abolish religious morning services. Similarly, the confessional and general prayers in several parts of the Reich have already been replaced by national socialist mottos. I would be grateful to know your opinion on a future national socialist morning service instead of the present confessional morning services that are usually conducted once per week.

Should those services he held at designated times, that is once per week or once every other week, or should they only be held at special occasions? I would further appreciate your advice on whether you have prepared concrete suggestions for the arrangement of such national socialist school services. If so I would be grateful to receive them.

May 2, 1941: From a memorandum found in the Rosenberg files:

1) The war can be continued only if all the Armed Forces are fed with stocks from Russia in the third year of the war.

2) There is no doubt that as a result many millions of people will die of starvation if we take out of this country everything that we need.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: I neither wrote that nor did I participate in this session, and I cannot determine whether any one of my collaborators knew anything at all about this meeting. It says here, "Senior officers only, two copies, one for the files and the second General Limbert." Therefore, only two people in the Armed Forces knew about this.

May 8, 1941: From instructions prepared by Rosenberg for all Reich commissioners in the Occupied Eastern Territories:

From the point of view of cultural policy, the German Reich is in a position to promote and direct national culture and science in many fields. It will be necessary that in some territories an uprooting and resettlement of various racial stocks will have to be effected . . . .

The aim of a Reich Commissioner for Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Byelorussia must be to strive for the creation of a German protectorate, with a view to transforming these regions later into a part of Greater Germany by the Germanization of racially admissible elements, the colonization of Germanic peoples, and the resettlement of undesirable elements.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Yes, I am familiar with this document, I already remarked yesterday that at the beginning all sorts of drafts were made in my office which were not approved by me. The corrections were made by me. But I still heard the wrong translation. Nothing is mentioned about "destruction," but "incorporation," and the Russian translation again said "destruction." If it is translated that way, then my question appears in the Russian language as an approval of destruction; and that is a wrong translation which is being made here, which I can follow only because I speak Russian. Even in that way it is not translated quite correctly. Here it says "colonization of German peoples," and now you are translating "Germanization and colonization." These are two substantives which again give correspondingly different sense, and I would like to add that these drafts made by a collaborator of mine were not actually issued, and that they in no way constitute instructions. I am not disputing that such a draft was submitted to my office.

June 20, 1941: From a speech by Rosenberg (Document 1058-PS):

The job of feeding the German people stands, this year, without a doubt, at the top of the list of Germany's claims on the East; and here the southern territories and the northern Caucasus will have to serve as a balance for the feeding of the German people. We see absolutely no reason for any obligation on our part to feed also the Russian people with the products of that surplus-territory. We know that this is a harsh necessity, bare of any feelings. very extensive evacuation will be necessary, without any doubt, and it is sure that the future will hold very hard years in store for the Russians. A later decision will have to determine to which extent industries can still be maintained there (wagon factories etc.). The consideration and execution of this policy in the Russian area proper is for the German Reich and its future a tremendous and by no means negative task, as might appear, if one takes only the harsh necessity of the evacuation in consideration. The conversion of Russian dynamics towards the East is a task which requires the strongest characters. Perhaps, this decision will also be approved by a coming Russian later, not in 30 but maybe in a 100 years. For the Russian soul has been torn in the struggle of the last 200 years. The original Russians are excellent artistic craftsmen, dancers and musicians. They have certain hereditary talents, but these talents are different from those of the Western people. The fight between Turgnjew and Dostejewsky was symbolic for the nation. The Russian soul found no outlet either way. If we now close the West to the Russians, they might become conscious of their own inborn, proper forces and of the area to which they belong. A historian will maybe see this decision in a different light, in hundreds of years than it might appear to a Russian today.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: This is a fairly long impromptu speech made before those who were concerned with, and assigned to deal with Eastern problems. With regard to this, I state that it was my duty, as a matter of course, to consider political measures which would have to be proposed to avoid a situation in which the German Reich would have to fight every 25 years for its existence in the East; and I should like to emphasize that that which I authentically said in a confidential speech does not correspond in any way with the Soviet accusations that I was in favor of a systematic extermination of the Slavic peoples.

I do not wish to occupy the Tribunal's time by reading very much here; nevertheless I would like to read a few paragraphs to justify myself. It says on Page 3 (Exhibit USA-147-Document 1058-PS):

"Originally, Russian history was a purely Continental affair. For 200 years Moscow-Russia lived under the Tartar yoke, and its face was mainly turned to the East. The Russian traders and hunters opened up the East as far as the Urals. Some Cossack treks went to Siberia, and the colonization of Siberia is no doubt one of the great accomplishments of history."

I think that this expresses my attitude of respect toward that historic achievement. On Page 6 it says:

"From this it follows that Germany's aim is the freedom of the Ukrainian people. This must without fail be made a point in our political program. In what form and to what extent a Ukrainian State can be formed later is of no purport just now.... One must proceed cautiously in this direction. Literature dealing with the Ukrainian struggles must be promoted so that the Ukrainian people's historical consciousness can be revived. A university would have to be founded in Kiev, technical colleges established, the Ukrainian language cultivated, et cetera."

I have quoted this as documentary evidence of the fact that it was not my intention to destroy the culture of the peoples of the East. In the next paragraph I pointed out that it was important to win, in the course of time, the voluntary cooperation of the 40 minion people in the Ukraine. On Page 7 reference is made to the possible occupation of the Caucasian territories as follows:

"Here the aim will not be to establish a Caucasian National State but to find a solution on Federal lines which, with German help, might go so far as to influence these people to ask Germany to protect their cultural and national existence."

Here, too, there is no question of a desire to exterminate. Now comes a matter which has been described by the American Prosecution as a particularly serious, incriminating factor. It deals with the so-called colonization and the property of German peoples in the East. This paragraph is worded as follows:

"Quite apart from all these problems, there is a question which is of an equally general nature, and which we must all think about namely, the question of German property. German people have worked in this immense territory for centuries. The result of that work, among other things, was the acquisition of vast lands. The land confiscated in the Baltic countries can be compared in size with East Prussia; the entire real estate in the Black Sea was as great as Wuritemberg, Baden, and Alsace put together. In the Black Sea area more land was cultivated than is arable in England. These comparisons of size must make it clear to us that the Germans there did not idly exploit or plunder the people, but that they did constructive work. And the result of this work is German national property; irrespective of earlier individual owners. Just how that may one day be compensated cannot yet be considered. But a ... legal basis can be established."

I wished to quote this so that I can refer to it later on when we deal with the agrarian problem, particularly in respect to the Reich Commission East, where in spite of these reflections the 700 year old German property was not restored but handed to the Estonians, Latvians, and Lithuanians by law, as has been proved. In a later paragraph it states:

"We must declare in this connection that even now we are not enemies of the Russian people..."

I continue to quote the following paragraph:

"We must declare in this connection that even now we are not enemies of the Russian people. All of us who knew the Russians before know that the individual Russian is a very likable person, capable of assimilating culture, but lacking only in the strength of character possessed by the Western European . . . . Our fight for a regrouping is conducted quite in line with the right of national self-determination of peoples...."

I shall not read to the Tribunal the end, which they can later take cognizance of in detail if they so wish. I made that speech fully convinced that, after my first expository remarks to the Fuehrer about the subject, he had essentially agreed with me. I did not know--and he did not tell me that other military and police orders had already been issued; otherwise it would have been practically impossible for me--and particularly in Heydrich's presence--to make a speech which obviously contradicted flatly the conceptions of Himmler and Heydrich.

As far as the passage from this document which had been quoted by the Prosecution is concerned, I have the following to say: I heard from people working on the Four-Year Plan that, in the event of an occupation of the Moscow industrial region and of far-reaching destruction by war operations, large-scale industries could no longer continue, and that activities would probably be limited to operating a number of key industries only. That would necessarily result in considerable unemployment. Besides, it was not clear how large the supply reserves in the East were, and in view of the general food situation and of the blockade the German food supply had to be a primary consideration.

This is back of the remark that under certain circumstances a large-scale evacuation of Russian territories might be necessary where large numbers of industrial workers might become unemployed. And in connection therewith, I should like to refer to Document 1056-PS, which contains the first directive from the Ministry for Eastern Affairs, according to which the providing of food supplies for the population also was made a special duty . . . .

I just used a few key words and gave the speech (above) that way. This paragraph has been read by the Prosecution three or four times. Yesterday when we discussed this speech I myself expressly referred to this paragraph. Beyond that, I admitted that I was told by people connected with the Four Year Plan that it was not certain whether the industry of the Moscow industrial region could be fully maintained after its conquest-here the "wagon factories" are mentioned. Restriction might be necessary to some key industries, and through that a difficult problem in the supply of this area would arise. My remarks pointed out that, of necessity, these unemployed would probably have to be evacuated. I expressly referred to this document, namely, the first document of the Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories on this question where, under seven most important points for the civilian administration, Point 3 concerns the feeding of the civilian population. Later in the document it says that famines are to be avoided in any event and that in such a case the population was to receive special rations. I believe that in these hard times, in view of the laws and directives, it was impossible for me to do more than that. My entire political and spiritual position is to be concluded from what I said yesterday about the demand for liberty and culture in the Ukraine, about the sovereignty of the Caucasians, and also about the Russian State . . . .

I believe that not much more could have been done for this problem than by planning beforehand how to master the difficulties rather than afterwards. Other occupation forces have had the same experience. Perhaps I might say something more about the translation of this passage. It was translated to me that these measures were to be carried through "without any feeling." In the original it says "beyond feeling," or "above feeling."

June 22, 1941 Unternehmen Barbarossa: Operation Barbarossa begins as 4.5 million troops of the Axis powers invade the USSR along an 1,800 mile front. (Clark II)

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: That was no longer a planning in which I took part, but it was the consequence of a decision which had already been made and about which my advice had not been asked. I was notified that a decision had been made and military orders had been given. Therefore I have nothing . . . . Well, if I have to answer the question [was my appointment as the Fuehrer's Commissioner in central control for all questions relating to the Eastern European territories directly connected with Germany's attack on the Soviet Union?] as much as possible with "yes" or "no," I have just answered this, on the basis of the wording, with "no." ... all the tasks connected with the conflict with the Soviet Union were divided up from a military point of view. They were assigned to Goering in the field of economic planning; they were, as became evident later on, clearly defined with the Police. I had been given a political liaison office in order to discuss the political problems of the East, and to give the different offices ideas about the eventual political administration and the direction of this policy. In the main I did that in the sense which you find in my speech of 20 June.

June 28, 1941: The Organization of the Administration of Occupied Eastern Territories (Document 1056-PS):

The newly occupied Eastern Territories are subordinated to the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. By directions of the Fuehrer he establishes a civil administration there upon withdrawal of the military administration. He heads and supervises the entire administration of this area and represents the sovereignty of the Reich in the occupied Eastern Territories . . . .

The Armed Forces Commanders exercise the rights of military sovereignty and the territorial power of command in their areas of jurisdiction. Their demands will be carried out in the civilian sphere by the Reich Commissars and their subordinate agencies. The military agencies are neither superior nor subordinate to the agencies of the civilian administration. The Armed Forces Commanders can provide even civilian agencies with directives in urgent cases, however, in accordance with the Fuehrer's decree of 6/5/1941. All agencies of the civilian administration are obligated to inform the military agencies of all affairs which might affect the sphere of their assignments.

Considerable value is to be laid upon a frictionless collaboration. The Commissars are to have themselves thoroughly informed by the Armed Forces Commanders, respectively by the agencies subordinated to them about their observations, experiences, and the measures already taken after taking over the administration. The laws decreed by them and the administrative orders given by them remain in effect insofar as the decrees and ordinances are not abrogated;

The Fuehrer has entrusted Reich Marshal Hermann Goering, as Commissioner for the Four-year Plan, with the supervision of the tasks of the war economy in the Occupied Eastern Territories. The economic inspectorates and economic commands are active there as his representatives (see green folio). These economic inspectorates and economic commands will be substantially absorbed in the agencies of the civil administration after the establishment of the civil administration.

If basic differences of opinion should arise between the agencies of the civil administration and the military agencies or, insofar as they still exist, the economic inspectorates and economic commands, and these cannot be settled in direct conversations, then it is to be reported to the superior civil authority immediately so that the latter can, in cooperation with the superior military agency, bring about an amicable unification . . . .

A conference took place with Admiral Canaris to the effect that, under the existing confidential circumstances, my office could in no way negotiate with any representatives of the peoples of Eastern Europe. I asked him to do this insofar as counterespionage work required it and then to name persons to me who, over and above counterespionage service, might be regarded as political personalities, in order to determine their possible utilization later. Admiral Canaris said that of course he would take into consideration my request not to recognize any political groups among the emigrants, and that he intended to act in line with my statements.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: Document 1056-PS is not a direct instruction of the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories but it was the result of discussions with various central agencies of the Reich Government officially interested in the East. In this document there are contained directions of the Eastern Ministry itself, and agreements with the various technical agencies such as the Transportation Ministry, the Post Office Department, and also the Police, in order to manifest, at least in the East, a certain unified civil administration. For the reasons which I have enumerated at the beginning this was no longer possible, and as far as the other questions of the subordination of the SS and Police Leader are concerned, to which I have referred the Prosecution on the basis of this document, I might indicate what I took the liberty of saying at the beginning in connection with the comment on the staffing of the administration of the Eastern territories, dated 17 July 1941.

However, as far as Document 1056-PS is concerned, I would like to point out that among the seven points which are especially stressed here, only the third point, "Care of the Population," is quite expressly mentioned. Then, further along in the document it is again explained that this supplying of the population with foodstuffs and so forth is to be given special attention and That the problems of medical and veterinary help are to be given special consideration, even calling upon military authorities if necessary. Except for that I do not wish to go into this document further . . . .

No, that is not correct [that I asked Canaris, in the interests of counterintelligence work, to choose certain persons who, while working on counterintelligence, would also be able to do political work]. But I heard that Admiral Canaris had organized a certain group of Ukrainians, I believe, and other nationals for some sabotage or other work. He visited me once and I asked him not to meddle with the political work, that is with the political preparatory work, and he assured me he would not. I do not deny the fact that, of course, if Canaris had an interesting political report it would be proper for him to inform me about it on occasion. I had no counterintelligence organization or espionage organization . . . .

Yes [I confirm this quotation], in the German wording but not in the Russian translation. I understand Russian also and can, therefore, determine that the translation is not entirely correct; for it says here that I, under the existing confidential circumstances, naturally could not negotiate with other countries for eventual collaboration in a civilian administration. That is the first point. And point two is that, since Admiral Canaris had to do with various groups of Ukrainians, Russians, and other people, I was asking him-apart from counterintelligence, that is-not to do espionage work for me or ask me to do espionage work but that he should point out to me people of other nationalities whom I could use later--under given conditions--in civilian administration. That was the meaning; and furthermore, at the end it is quite correct that he agreed not to carry on any political work himself.

According to the German translated into Russian it must have been that. I can recognize only the German text, not the Russian translation, which is not in accord with this meaning. You interpret this text as though I were trying to carry on espionage work. I asked Admiral Canaris, since I could not carry on political negotiations with representatives of the Eastern people, simply to tell me from his personal knowledge, apart from his official capacity, what people of the Eastern regions, under certain circumstances, might later work in the civilian administration for me. That is the meaning. The translation is, therefore, not entirely correct. I only received Admiral Canaris and told him that, in his official capacity in which he had to function, he should not deal with political negotiations and plans, because I was now being given that task . . . .

I was informed of many combats with partisans and of bands and, as I have stated, of some shootings; and also I was told about the fact that German agricultural leaders, German officials and policemen, and peaceful Soviet farmers were attacked by these partisans and bands and were murdered by thousands. In these combats we tried especially to protect the farming population and others too; and when we heard about what appeared to us to be excessive measures by the Police, we put the most severe demands to them that even in the full heat of battle these matters were to be considered; and the Police told us that it was easy to make those demands from behind a desk, but, if in White Ruthenia the partisans murder and burn 50Q White Ruthenian burgomasters with their families in their houses and we are shot at from the rear, then terrible conflicts must follow. It goes without saying that in an occupied territory in the middle of such a war the Police are responsible for police protection measures. And the third point is "the supply of the population with foodstuffs in order to avoid famine." I repeat, "supply of the population in order to avoid famine."

July 10, 1941: Xaver Dorsch to Alfred Rosenberg:

The prison camp Minsk, approximately the size of Wilhelmsplatz [a large square in Berlin], contains about 100,000 POW's and 40,000 civilian detainees. The prisoners, crammed into this tight space, can hardly move and are forced to relieve themselves wherever they happen to stand. The security of the camp by one company of soldiers [between 100 and 200 men] can only be effected by brutal force. The problem of feeding the POW's being insoluble, they have largely been without nourishment for six to eight days and ... are almost manic in their need for sustenance. The civilian prisoners are from Minsk and surrounding districts aged between fifteen and fifty. Those who have families in Minsk are receiving food; their relatives crowd the gate in endless queues. But during the night, the other inmates assault and often kill them for a piece of bread or a bone. The guards who are on duty day and night can only deal with this impossible situation by making indiscriminate use of their weapons. Given the army's priority on transport and supplies, there seems to be no possibility of redressing this chaotic situation.

July 10, 1941: From a decree for the creation of summary courts for decisions on crimes committed by non-Germans in the East, signed by Rosenberg:

The Commissioner General forms the administrative office of intermediate appeal . . . . The SS and Police Leader assigned to the Commissioner General is directly subordinated to him. However, the Chief of Staff has the general right of requiring information from him.

July 16, 1941: At a planning meeting concerning policies to be implemented in the Eastern Territories, it is confirmed that Rosenberg will be put in charge.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: After the entry of German troops in the eastern territories, the Wehrmacht of its own accord granted the practice of religious worship; and when I was made Minister for the East, I legally sanctioned this practice by issuing a special "church tolerance" edict at the end of December 1941.

July 17, 1941: Hitler officially appoints Rosenberg Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. From Excerpts from the Directives of the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories and for the Civil Administration (Document L221, Exhibit USA-317):

The newly occupied Eastern territories are subordinated to the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories. By direction of the Fuehrer he establishes a civil administration there, upon withdrawal of the military administration. He heads and supervises the entire administration of this area and represents the sovereignty of the Reich in the Occupied Eastern Territories . . . . To the Reich Ministry is assigned a deputy of the Reich Leader SS and Chief of the German Police in the Reich Ministry of the Interior . . . .

In the Reich commissariats, Reich commissioners are responsible for the entire civil administration under the supreme authority of the Reich Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories. According to the instructions of the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, the Reich Commissioner, as a functionary of the Reich, heads and supervises, within his precincts, the entire civil administration. Within the scope of these instructions he acts on his own responsibility . . . . The Higher SS and Police Leader is directly subordinated to the Reich Commissioner. However, the Chief of Staff has the general right to secure information from him also . . . . Great stress is to be placed on close co-operation between him, the Chief of Staff, and the other main department heads of the office of the Reich Commissioner, particularly with the one for policies.

From Rosenberg's IMT testimony: This document, which is obviously a final resume by Bormann, has, of course, been submitted here four or five times. During that meeting I had actually not intended to present a voluminous program, but this session had been called for the purpose of discussing the wording of the intended Fuehrer decrees concerning the administration of the Occupied Eastern Territories and to give all the participants an opportunity to state their views on that subject. I was also preoccupied with a number of questions dealing with personnel, which I wanted to submit to the Fuehrer. I was surprised, therefore, when the Fuehrer began passionately, and at considerable length, to expound this policy in the East while making many unexpected observations for me. I had the impression that the Fuehrer himself was aroused by the unanticipated powerful armament of the Soviet Union and our hard struggle against the Red Army. That had obviously caused the Fuehrer to make some of the statements to which I may perhaps refer at the end.

In the presence of the other witnesses, I countered the unexpected statements of the Fuehrer, and in addition I should like to read from Bormann's record the following paragraphs which have not been read until now. I quote from the original Document L221 [above] on Page 4:

"Reich Leader Rosenberg emphases that, in accordance with his views, each Kommissariat would require a different treatment of the population. In the Ukraine we would have to initiate a program furthering art and culture. We would have to awaken the historical consciousness of the Ukrainians, and establish a university at Kiev, and the like. The Reich Marshal, on the other hand, points out that we have to think first of guaranteeing our food supply everything else should be dealt with later. (Incidental question: Is there still anything like an educated class in the Ukraine, or are upper-class Ukrainians to be found only as emigrants outside present day Russia?)"

This is a comment by Bormann. I continue to quote:

"Rosenberg continues that certain independence movements in the Ukraine deserved support as well."

Then follows on Page 5 a quotation of the intentions of the Fuehrer, where it says-and I quote:

"Likewise the Crimea, including a considerable hinterland (territory north of the Crimea), must become Reich territory; the hinterland must be as large as possible. Rosenberg complains about this because of the Ukrainians living there. (Incidental question:"--again from Bormann--"It frequently appears that Rosenberg has quite a liking for the Ukrainians; he wants to enlarge the former Ukraine to a considerable extent.)"

Thus there is evidence that I tried to persuade the Fuehrer with all my might to agree to the same points which I made in my speech on 20 June 1941 before the assembled department heads.

The further content of the document shows that the Reich Marshal was interested particularly in the appointment of the former Gauleiter Koch, and that I opposed this candidate since I was afraid that Koch, due to his temperament and being so far removed front the Reich, might not follow my directives. To be sure, while making the protest I could not have known that Koch later on, in disobeying my directives, would go as far as he did and--I shall add--upon special instigation by the head of the Party Chancellery.

Toward the end, on Page 10 of the original of the record, there appears a passage which has not been read, which I am now quoting:

"A lengthy discussion sets in regarding the competency of the Reichsfuehrer-SS. Obviously the participants have also in mind the authority of the Reich Marshal at the time."

I personally wish to add that this is a private remark made by the head of the Party Chancellery and does not by any means represent the actual minutes of a meeting. I quote further:

"The Fuehrer, the Reich Marshal, and others emphasize repeatedly that Himmler shall by no means have greater jurisdiction than he had in Germany proper; this, however, was absolutely necessary."

These minutes show that this was a rather heated discussion, since, not only during that conference, but before that I had opposed the idea that the police should have legally independent executive authority in the occupied territories--that is to say, that they were to be independent of the civil administration. I also spoke against the presented version of the Fuehrer decree, which had already been prepared. I did not find any support whatsoever for my opinion from anyone present, and that explains to a great extent the later developments and the wording of the decree, signed on the following day by the Fuehrer, which was the ruling applicable to the entire administration in the Occupied Eastern Territories.

May I refer you to Paragraph 2, which deals with the establishment of the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, where a Reich Minister is appointed, and Paragraph 3, which reads as follows:

"Military authorities and powers are exercised in the newly occupied Eastern Territories by the commanders of the Armed Forces in accordance with my decree of 25 June 1941. The powers of the Delegate for the Four Year Plan in the newly occupied Eastern Territories, according to my decree of 29 June 1941, and those of the Reichsfuehrer SS and Chief of the German Police, according to my decree of 17 July 1941, are subject to special ruling and are not affected by the following regulations."

Paragraph 6 states:

"At the head of each Reich Commission shall be a Reich commissioner . . . "

And then follow detailed regulations, stating that the Reich commissioners and the commissioners general shall be appointed by the Fuehrer personally, and that consequently they could not be relieved or dismissed by me.

Paragraph 7 rules that the Reich commissioners shall be subordinated to the Reich Ministers and shall receive instructions exclusively from them wherever Article 3 is not applicable--that is, the Paragraph 3 which refers to the commanders of--the Armed Forces and the Chief of the German Police.

Paragraph 9 states:

"The Reich commissioners are responsible for the entire administration of their territory with regard to civilian affairs."

In the next paragraph the entire management of the German railways and mails is placed under the jurisdiction of the ministries concerned, as is not otherwise possible in war.

Paragraph 10 requires the Reich Minister, whose headquarters are specified as Berlin, to coordinate, in the highest interest of the Reich, his wishes with those of the other supreme authorities in the Reich, and in the event of differences of opinion to seek a decision by the Fuehrer.

I need not submit to the Tribunal the Fuehrer decree concerning Commands of the Armed Forces, since it is sufficiently clear what we are concerned with, nor the decree regarding the powers of the Delegate for the Four Year Plan, dated 29 June 1941, in which it is stated that the Delegate for the Four Year Plan--that is, Reich Marshal Goering--may also issue instructions to all civilian and military services in the Occupied Eastern Territories. Of decisive importance for an estimate of the entire legal relationship, however, and the consequence finally resulting therefrom is the decree of the Fuehrer regarding police protection in the Occupied Eastern Territories, dated 17 July 1941. It says under Provision I as follows:

"Police security in the newly occupied Eastern Territories is a matter for the Reichsfuehrer SS and Chief of the German Police."

By this Paragraph I all security measures in the Eastern Territories were placed under the unlimited jurisdiction of the Reichsfuehrer SS, who thereby, alongside the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories and next to the Delegate for the Four Year Plan, became the third independent central Reich authority in Berlin, with the result that the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories could not install a security or police department in his ministry in Berlin.

Under Provision II it states that the Reichsfuehrer SS is also authorized, apart from the normal instructions to his police, to issue instructions directly to the civilian Reich commissioners under certain circumstances, and that he is obliged to transmit orders of fundamental political significance through the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, unless it is a question of averting an imminent danger. This wording gave to the Reichsfuehrer SS the actual possibility of deciding for himself what he considered politically important in his orders and what not, and what his orders regarding the averting of impending danger concerned.

Provision IIB is of very great importance, since the quotation of Document 1056-PS (Volume V, Page 60) has given the Tribunal the impression that the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories had units of the SS under his command in the Occupied Eastern Territories. Even though it appears from Provision I, which I have just quoted, that this is incorrect, a wording which is often used in connection with the powers of the SS has led to this misunderstanding. This wording is quoted under III of the Police Security Decree as follows:

"For the carrying out of police security to each Reich commissioner shall be attached a Higher SS and Police Leader who shall be directly and personally subordinate to the Reich commissioner. Leaders of the SS and Police shall be assigned to the Commissioners General, to the chief, and to the area commissioners, and shall be subordinated to them directly and personally."

Dr. Lammers, who was charged with the drafting of these proposals, has replied upon questioning that this wording was chosen to mean that the civilian Reich commissioner could certainly give instructions to the police on political matters, but that by the choice of the words "personally and directly subordinate" the actual giving of orders was exclusively reserved for the Chief of the German Police. And, as far as I know, Himmler insisted particularly on this wording because it allowed the Reich Commission outwardly to manifest to the population a certain uniformity of administration, while, according to Reich law and in practice, the power to issue orders bypassed the civilian administration. The agreements between Heydrich and the General Quartermaster of the Army here submitted, the contents of which I heard for the first time during this Trial, emphasize that this corresponds to the facts and point out just how these matters developed and how orders and authorizations of the police were worded.

The other decrees deal with the establishment of the Reich commissions themselves, and I do' not believe that I need quote them to the Tribunal. They represent the detailed elaboration of that which has preceded.

I should merely like to refer now to the Lammers decree of 9 February 1942, which refers to technical matters and armament. I point out that, due to later wishes expressed by other agencies of the Reich, the departments for technical matters and propaganda, which had been attached originally to the Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories and the Reich Commission head offices, were separated from these bodies and subordinated to the corresponding ministries in such a way that Reich Minister Speer had his deputies in the Reich Commissions as liaison officers, just as the Reich Transport Minister also had; and that political propaganda instructions were to be issued by the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, but their practical execution left to the Reich Minister for Propaganda.

The Nuremberg Tribunal Biographies
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