Изображения страниц

comes into play. It is also nonsense to say that the soldier
or the officer must have no politics. The soldier embodies the
state in which he lives; he is the representative, the articu-
late exponent of this state. He must therefore stand with
his whole weight behind this state.
“We must travel this road from our deepest conviction. The
Russian travels along it. We can only maintain ourselves in
this war if we take part in it with holy zeal, with all our
“Not I alone can do this, but it can only be done with the aid
of the man who holds the production of Europe in his hand,
with Minister Speer. My ambition is to have as many war-
ships for the Navy as possible so as to be able to fight and to

strike. It does not matter to me who builds them.(D-443) In a speech on the same subject by Doenitz as Commander-inChief of the Navy to the Commanders in Chief on 15 February 1944, he had this to say:

"From the very start the whole of the officer corps must be so indoctrinated that it feels itself co-responsible for the National Socialist State in its entirety. The officer is the exponent of the state; the idle chatter that the officer is non

political is sheer nonsense." (D-640) Doenitz's position was made unmistakably clear in a speech which he made to the German Navy and the German people on Heroes' Day, 12 March 1944: “German men and women!

What would have become of our country today, if the Fuehrer had not united us under National-Socialism! Split into parties, beset with the spreading poison of Jewry and vulnerable to it, and lacking, as a defense, our present uncompromising world outlook, we would long since have succumbed to the burdens of this war and been subject to the merciless destruction of our adversaries. (2878-PS) A speech by Doenitz to the Navy on 21 July 1944 shows his fanaticism: "Men of the Navy! Holy wrath and unlimited anger fill our hearts because of the criminal attempt which was intended to have cost the life of our beloved Fuehrer. Providence wished it otherwise—watched over and protected our Fuehrer, and did not abandon our German fatherland in the fight for its destiny." (2878-PS)


And then he goes on to deal with the fate which should be meted out to the traitors.

The abolition of the German military salute and the adoption of the Nazi salute in the German forces was due to Doenitz along with Goering and Keitel (2878-PS).

When Adolf Hitler was reported dead, Doenitz spoke over the German radio announcing the Fuehrer's death and his own succession. The German announcer made this statement:

“It has been reported from the Fuehrer's Headquarters that
our Fuehrer Adolf Hitler has died this afternoon in his bat-
tle headquarters at the Reichschancellery fighting to the last
breath for Germany against Bolshevism.
“On the 30th April the Fuehrer nominated Grand Admiral
Doenitz to be his successor. The Grand Admiral and Fueh-

rer's successor will speak to the German nation.” (D-444) Whereupon Doenitz spoke as follows:

“German men and women, soldiers of the German Armed Forces. Our Fuehrer Adolf Hitler is dead. The German people bow in deepest sorrow and respect. Early he had recognized the terrible danger of Bolshevism and had dedicated his life to the fight against it. His fight having ended, he died a hero's death in the capital of the German Reich, after having led an unmistakably straight and steady life.”

(D-444) Doenitz proceeded to issue an order of the day, to the same effect (D-444).


Apart from his services in building up the U-boat arm, there is ample evidence that Doenitz, as Officer Commanding U-boats, took part in the planning and execution of the aggressive wars against Poland, Norway, and Denmark.

(1) Poland. The distribution list on a memorandum by Raeder, dated 16 May 1939, shows that the sixth copy went to the Fuehrer der Unterseeboote, who was Doenitz. This document was a directive for the invasion of Poland (Fall Weiss) (C126). Another memorandum from Raeder's headquarters, dated 2 August 1939, is addressed to the fleet, and The Flag Officer, Uboats — this is, Doenitz (C-126). This was merely a covering letter on operational directions for the precautionary employment of U-boats in the Atlantic in the event that the intention to

carry out Fall Weiss remained unchanged. The second sentence is significant:

"Flag Officer, U-boats, is handing in his operational orders to SKL [Seekriegsleitung, the German Admiralty] by 12 August. A decision on the sailings of U-boats for the Atlantic

will probably be made at the middle of August.” (C-126) Doenitz proceeded to give operational instructions to his U-boats for the operation Fall Weiss. These instructions, signed by him, are not dated, but it is clear from the subject matter that the date must have been before 16 July 1939 (C-172). These operational instructions gave effect to Raeder's directive (C-126).


(2) Norway and Denmark. An extract from the War Diary of the Naval War Staff of the German Admiralty, dated 3 October 1939, records the fact that the Chief of the Naval War Staff has called for views on the possibility of taking operational bases in Norway (C-122). It states Doenitz's views as follows:

* Flag Officer U-boats already considers such harbors extremely useful as equipment—and supply—bases for

Atlantic U-boats to call at temporarily.” (C-122) A communication from Doenitz as Flag Officer U-boats, addressed to the Supreme Command of the Navy (the Naval War Staff) dated 9 October 1939, sets out Doenitz's views on the advantages of Trondheim and Narvik as bases. Doenitz proposes the establishment of a base at Trondheim with Narvik as an alternative (C-5).

Doenitz then gave operation orders to his U-boats for the occupation of Denmark and Norway. This Top Secret order, dated 30 March 1940, under the code name Hartmut,” provided :

“The naval force will, as they enter the harbor, fly the British flag until the troops have landed, except presumably at Narvik." (C-151)

(3) England. The préparations for war against England are perhaps best shown by the disposition of the U-boats under Doenitz's command on 3 September 1939, when war broke out between Germany and the Western Allies. The locations of the sinkings in the following week, including that of the Athenia, provide corroboration. These matters are contained in two charts prepared by the British Admiralty. The first chart sets out the disposition of German submarines on 3 September 1939. The certificate attached to this chart reads:

“This chart has been constructed from a study of the orders issued by Doenitz between 21 August 1939 and 3 Septem

ber 1939, and subsequently captured. The chart shows the approximate disposition of submarines ordered for the 3rd of September 1939, and cannot be guaranteed accurate in every detail, as the file of captured orders are clearly not complete and some of the submarines shown apparently had received orders at sea on or about September 3 to move to new operational areas. The documents from which this chart was constructed are held by the British Admiralty in Lon

don.It will be apparent that U-boats which were in the positions indicated on this chart on 3 September 1939 had left Kiel a considerable time before. The location of the U-boat U-30 is particularly significant.

The second chart sets out the sinkings during the first week of the war. The attached certificate reads:

"This chart has been constructed from the official records of the British Admiralty in London. It shows the position and sinkings of the British merchant vessels lost by enemy

action in the seven days subsequent to 3 September 1939.” The location of the sinking of the Athenia is significant.


The course of the war waged against neutral and allied merchant shipping by German U-boats followed, under Doenitz's direction, a course of consistently increasing ruthlessness.

(1) Attacks on Merchant Shipping. Doenitz displayed “his masterly understanding in adjusting himself to the changing fortunes of war” (1463PS). From the very early days, merchant ships, both allied and neutral, were sunk without warning, and when operational danger zones had been announced by the German Admiralty, these sinkings continued to take place both within and without those zones. With some exceptions in the early days of the war, no regard was taken for the safety of the crews or passengers of sunken merchant ships, and the announcement claiming a total blockade of the British Isles merely served to confirm the established situation under which U-boat warfare was being conducted without regard to the established rules of international warfare or the requirements of humanity.

The course of the war at sea during the first eighteen months is summarized by two official British reports made at a time when those who compiled them were ignorant of some of the

[ocr errors]

actual orders issued which have since come to hand. An official report of the British Foreign Office summarizes German attacks on merchant shipping during the period 3 September 1939 to September 1940, that is to say, the first year of the war (D-641-A). This report, made shortly after September 1940, states in part as follows:

During the first twelve months of the war, 2,081,062 tons of Allied shipping, comprising 508 ships, have been lost by enemy action. In addition, 769,213 tons of neutral shipping comprising 253 ships, have also been lost. Nearly all these merchant ships have been sunk by submarine, mine, aircraft or surface craft, and the great majority of them sunk while engaged on their lawful trading occasions. 2,836 Allied merchant seamen have lost their lives in these ships. “In the last war the practice of the Central Powers was so remote from the recognized procedure that it was thought necessary to set forth once again the rules of warfare in particular as applied to submarines. This was done in the Treaty of London 1930, and in 1936 Germany acceded to these rules. The rules laid down: “(1) In action with regard to merchant ships, submarines must conform to the rules of International Law to which surface vessels are subjected. “(2) In particular, except in the case of persistent refusal to stop on being summoned, or of active resistance to visit and search, a warship, whether surface vessel or submarine, may not sink or render incapable of navigation a merchant vessel without having first placed passengers, crew, and ship's papers in a place of safety. For this purpose, the ship's boats are not regarded as a place of safety unless the safety of the passengers and crew is assured in the existing sea and weather conditions, by the proximity of land, or the presence of another vessel which is in a position to take them on board. “At the beginning of the present war, Germany issued a Prize Ordinance for the regulation of sea warfare and the guidance of her naval officers. Article 74 of this ordinance embodies the submarine rules of the London Treaty. Article 72, however, provides that captured enemy vessels may be destroyed if it seems inexpedient or unsafe to bring them into port, and Article 73 (i) (ii) makes the same provision with regard to neutral vessels which are captured for sailing under enemy convoy, for forcible resistance, or for giving assistance to the enemy. These provisions are certainly not

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »