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a spark of human pity, have continued to take active part in support of a system that was responsible for such suffering? But they had no pity—and by their ideology and teaching they had deprived the German people of pity.
Ziereis describes the frightful end that Kaltenbrunner contemplated for the concentration camps and their inmates when the advancing Allied Armies brought with them the danger of capturing these camps and of disclosing the guilt of the Nazi Government (3870-PS, USA 797):
“Prisoners were to be led into the tunnels of the factory Berdkristall and the only entrance was to be blown up by the use of explosive and the death of the prisoners was to be effected in this manner.”
Even Ziereis, murderer of Mauthausen's 65,000 dead, shied and refused that order.
That evidence is corroborated beyond question by the written order issued by the Commandant of the Sipo and SD in the Government General, which has been put in as evidence (L-53, USA 291):
"Should the situation at the front necessitate it, early preparations are to be made for the total clearance of prisoners. Should the situation develop suddenly, in such a way that it is impossible to evacuate the prisoners the present inmates are to be liquidated and their bodies disposed of as far as possible (burning, blowing up the building, etc.). If necessary, Jews still employed in the armament industry or on other work are to be dealt with in the same way. The liberation of prisoners or Jews by the enemy, be it the Western enemies or the Red Army, must be avoided under all circumstances. Nor may they fall into their hands alive."
And Kaltenbrunner himself saw to it that these orders should be carried out. With this evidence before us, there can be only one meaning to that teleprint message which was found amongst his papers on his arrest (2519-PS, USA 530):
"Please inform the Reichsfuehrer SS and report to the Fuehrer that all arrangements against Jews, political and concentration camp internees in the Protectorate have been taken care of by me personally today.”
The proposition which you are asked to accept is that a man who was either a Minister or a leading executive in a State which, within the space of six years, transported in horrible conditions some 7,000,000 men, women and children for labour, exterminated 275,000 of its own aged and mentally infirm and annihilated in the gas chambers or by shooting what must at the lowest com
putation be 12,000,000 people, remained ignorant of or irresponsible for these crimes. You are asked to accept that the horrors of the transports, of the conditions of this slave labour, deployed as it was in labour camps throughout the country, the smell of the burning bodies, all of which were known to the world, were not known to these 21 men by whose orders such things were done. When they spoke or wrote in support of this horrible policy of genocide you are asked to accept that their utterances were made in ignorance of the facts, as part of their general duty to support the policy of their Government, or finally, should be regarded merely as tactical—that is to say, that only by talking or writing in such a way could they divert Hitler from cruelty or aggression. It is for you to decide. Goering, Hess, Ribbentrop, Keitel, Kaltenbrunner, Rosenberg, Frank, Frick, Streicher, Funk, Schacht, Doenitz, Raeder, Schirach, Sauckel, Jodl, Von Papen, Seyss-Inquart, Speer, Von Neurath, Fritzsche, Bormann-these are the guilty men.
Let me make brief comments upon each one of them but in particular upon those whose close complicity in the most sordid crimes of all, the bestial murders, has possibly been less manifest.
Goering's responsibility in all these matters is scarcely to be denied. Behind his spurious air of bon homme, he was as great an architect as any in this satanic system. Who, apart from Hitler, had more knowledge of what went on, or greater influence to affect its course? The conduct of government in the Nazi State, the gradual build-up of the organization for war, the calculated aggression, the atrocities—these things do not occur spontaneously or without the closest cooperation between the holders of the various offices of State. Men do not advance into foreign territory, pull the trigger, drop their bombs, build the gas chambers, collect the victims, unless they are organized and ordered to do it. Crimes on the national and systematic scale which occurred here must involve anyone who forms a part of the necessary chain, since without that participation, plans for aggression here, mass murder there, would become quite impossible. The Fuehrer principle by which the Nazis placed their bodies and their very souls at the disposal of their leader was the creation of the Nazi Party, and of these men. When I addressed you at the opening of this trial, I remarked that there comes a time when a man must choose between his conscience and his leader. No one who chose, as these men did, to abdicate their consciences in favour of this monster of their own creation can complain now if they are held responsible for complicity in what their monster did.
And least of all, Hess. The role Hess played in the Nazi Party is well established. But not content with creating the monster, he aided it in every aspect of its monstrous work.
I mention only one instance. You will recall, in connection with the extermination of the Eastern peoples, his direction to Party Officials to support recruitment for the Waffen SS. He said (3245-PS, GB 267):
“It consists of National Socialists who are more suitable than other armed units for the specific tasks to be solved in the occupied eastern territories, owing to their intensive National Socialist training in regard to questions of race and nationality."
Ribbentrop's part, also, is clear. No one in history has so debauched diplomacy: no one been guilty of meaner treachery. But he, like the rest of them, is just a common murderer. Ribbentrop it was who, since 1940, had been directing the minions in his embassy and legations throughout Europe to accelerate the execution of such "political measures" that is, measures of racial extermination. It was not Himmler, but the Reich Foreign Minister who proudly reported to the Duce in February, 1943, that (EC-265; 3688-PS; D-734):
"All Jews had been transported from Germany and from the territories occupied by her to reserves in the East."
His bald recommendations to Horthy two months later and the record of the conference called by Steengracht, his permanent Under Secretary of State, betray the meaning of these ghastly euphonisms (D-736, GB 283; 3319-PS, GB 287):
No one was more insistent on merciless action in the occupied territories than Ribbentrop. You will remember his advice to the Italians on how to deal with strikes (D-740, GB 297):
"In such a case only merciless action is any good. In the occupied territories we would not get anywhere with soft measures in the endeavour to reach an agreement."
Advice which he proceeded to reinforce by referring with pride to the successes of “brutal measures” in Norway, “brutal action” in Greece, and in France and Poland the success of “Draconian” measures.
Were Keitel and Jodl less involved in murder than their confederates? They cannot deny knowledge or responsibility for the operations of the Einsatz Commandos with whom their own Commanders were working in close and cordial cooperation. The attitude of the High Command to the whole question is typified by Jodl's remark about the evacuation of Danish Jews (D-547, GB 488):
“I know nothing of this. If a political measure is to be carried out by the Commander, Denmark, the OKW must be notified by the Foreign Office."
You cannot disguise murder by calling it a political measure.
Kaltenbrunner, as chief of the RSHA, must be guilty. The Reports of the Einsatz Commandos were sent to him monthly. You will remember the words of Gisevius, a witness for the defence (3876-PS, USA 808):
“We asked ourselves whether it was possible that an even worse man could possibly be found after such a monster as Heydrich Kaltenbrunner came
and things got worse every day
We had the experience that perhaps the impulsive actions of a murderer like Heydrich were not as bad as the cold legal logic of a lawyer who was handling such a dangerous instrument as the Gestapo.”
You will remember his description of those horrible luncheon parties at which Kaltenbrunner discussed every detail of the gas chambers and of the technique of mass murder.
Rosenberg's guilt as the philosopher and theorist who made the ground fertile for the seeds of Nazi policy is not in doubt, and it is beyond belief that he, as Reich Minister for Eastern Occupied Territories, did not know of and support the destruction of the ghettos and the operations of the Einsatz Commandos. In October, 1941, when the operations of those Commandos were at their height, one of Rosenberg's ministerial departmental chiefs was writing to the Reich Commissioner for the East in Riga informing him that the Reich Security Main Office had complained that he had forbidden the executions of the Jews in Libau and asking for a report upon the matter. On 15th November, the report comes back addressed to the Reich Minister for Occupied Eastern Territories (3663-PS, USA 825):
"I have forbidden the wild execution of Jews in Liepaja because they were not justifiable in the manner in which they were carried out. I should like to be informed whether your enquiry of 31st October is to be regarded as a directive to liquidate all Jews in the East? Shall this take place without regard to age and sex and economic interests?
Of course, the cleansing of the East of Jews is a necessary task; its solution, however, must be harmonized with the necessities of war production.”
Frank—if it is not sufficient to convict him that he was responsible for the administration of the Government General and for one of the bloodiest and most brutal chapters in Nazi history-has himself stated (2233-C-PS, USA 271):
“One cannot kill all lice and all Jews in one Year." It is no coincidence that that was exactly Hitler's language. And again (2233-D-PS, USA 281):
“As far as the Jews are concerned, I want to tell you quite
frankly that they must be done away with in one way or another
Gentlemen, I must ask you to rid yourselves of all feeling of pity. We must annihilate the Jews wherever we find them and whenever it is possible in order to maintain the structure of the Reich as a whole
*. We cannot shoot or poison 3,500,000 Jews, but we shall nevertheless be able to take measures which will lead to their annihilation."
Can Frick, as Minister of the Interior, have been unaware of the policy to exterminate the Jews? In 1941 one of his subordinates, Heydrich, was writing to another—the Minister of Justice (R-96, GB 268):
“It may safely be assumed that in the future there will be no more Jews in the annexed Eastern territories.”
Can he, as Reich Protector for Bohemia and Moravia deny responsibility for the deportations of thousands of Jews from his territory to the gas chambers of Auschwitz, only a few miles across the frontier ?
Of Streicher one need say nothing. Here is a man more responsible, perhaps, than any, for the most frightful crime the world has ever known. For 25 years the extermination of the Jews had been his terrible ambition. For 25 years he had educated the German people in the philosophy of hate, of brutality, of murder. He had incited and prepared them to support the Nazi policy, to accept and participate in the brutal persecution and slaughter of millions of his fellow men. Without him these things could not have been. It is long since he forfeited all right to live.
The fact that the defendants Schacht and Funk dealt chiefly with economics ought not blind the Tribunal to their important part in the general plan. Schacht says that he had clean hands in this matter. It is for you to say.
It is for you to say. Schacht played his part in bringing Hitler to power. He says he thought that Hitler was “a man with whom one could co-operate”, and assured Hitler that he could always count on him “as your reliable assistant.” He helped to consolidate the Nazi position and he was the main figure in collecting election funds from the industrialists (EC-457, USA 619). It then became his task to provide the economic plan and machinery necessary to launch and maintain aggression. He knew the policy about the Jews, he knew the methods Hitler was using to build up his power, he knew the ultimate aim was aggression. But he continued to play his part. Messersmith has summed up his work (EC-451, USA 626):
“Yet by Schacht's resourcefulness, his complete financial ruthlessness and his absolute cynicism Schacht was able to maintain and to establish the situation for the Nazis. Unques