« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
responsibility for the consequences, even the most extreme ones, because they could not personally disentangle themselves from these crimes.
And this brings us to our third proposition:
The Defendants must be judged on the basis of their functions performed in that criminal policy of which they were the promoters and instruments. Was it not Dr. Seidl who, in defending Frank, has said:
“This is an acknowledged principle and it derives from the penal code of all civilized nations that a uniform and natural action must be appraised in its totality, and that all circumstances which might possibly enter into consideration must be examined in order to form a basis at the time of the working out of the verdict."
It is in the political life that all the crimes of the defendants lie. They are, as we know the elements of a criminal State policy. To consider the defendants as offenders of the common law, to forget that they have acted in the name of the German State and for the account of that State, to apply a standard to them the same as that applied to hooligans or to assassins, would narrow the amplitude of the trial, would misinterpret the character of their crimes. Crimes which the Courts of our countries ordinarily adjudicate show the criminal in opposition to the social order. These are individual deeds; their range is limited; their consequences are circumscribed. Their crimes never strike more than a few victims, and it is impossible to find in the annals of our countries an example of murder methodically perpetrated by terror organizations whose victims would run higher than a few hundred people.
That is the highest price of a criminal plot within the bosom of our national Communities.
Organized, highly hierarchichal, endowed with an armed force and judicial institutions, our national communities can eliminate delinquents before they can do all the harm they are capable of.
These defendants, on the contrary, developed their criminal activity within the community of States, an unorganized world which is just beginning to be conscious of its own existence and had then neither armed power nor judges.
These defendants seized the German State and turned it into a gangster State, putting at the service of their criminal plans all the executive might of the State. They acted as chiefs or leaders of political, diplomatic, juridical, military, economic and financial staffs. The activity of these staffs is normally coordinated in any country since they serve a common purpose, indisputably a common political idea. But in National Socialist Germany, as we know, such coordination was reinforced by the interpretation of party and administrative agencies. Private crimes became community crimes when committed by the State. Indeed, they were bred by the political thought of each individual: “Conquest of space at any price".
State crimes committed by any one of those who controlled a major department were made possible only because all those who controlled every other major department contributed their share. Should some of them and their departments default, it meant the collapse of the State, the annihilation of its criminal power, which was tantamount to the end of the gas chambers or to the technical impossibility of creating them. But none had either the will or the wish to default, since gas chambers and extermination to make space were the paramount idea of the system, indeed were the system.
Is not the evidence of this unity in crime furnished by the very statements of the defendants, their constant efforts and those of their counsels to prove the autonomy of their departments and cast the Army's responsibility upon the Police, that of the Foreign Office upon the head of the Government, that of the Labor Department upon the Four-Year Plan, that of the Gauleiters upon the Generals; in short, by their attempt to persuade us that everything in Germany was run in tight compartments, whereas the interdependence of the administration and Party and multiplicity of connecting and controlling links between the State and Party prove the contrary by their clever overlapping. All French people who have lived in occupied France remember having seen on the walls of local Kommandanturs a poster depicting the bricks of a wall with the words:
“Teneo quia Teneor” printed over the picture. It was the whole motto of the system. A few bricks taken away were enough to make the wall crumble. None of these men have done that. On the contrary, they all contributed a brick to the edifice.
Thus by facts, apart from any legal notion of conspiracy, of complicity which may perhaps be subject to discussion according to the different characterisation of the jurists, we shall furnish proof of the solidarity in crime and of the equal culpability of all.
To have perpetrated the crime, it suffices for them being chiefs or high officials of the Party or one of the main State departments and acting on the State's account, to have with the object of extending by all possible means German living space conceived, to have been willing, to have ordered or merely tolerated by their silence that treaties ensuring the independence of other countries be violated, that wars of aggression be prepared or declared, that mass murders and other atrocities be systematically carried out, that demolitions and lootings without justification be systematically committed.
This is the crime of the German Reich, and all the defendants have conspired to commit it.
We will prove this for each of the defendants by means of examples drawn from the trial. For each defendant, the three principal propositions of this demonstration will be the following:
(1) the defendant occupied an eminent position in the machinery of the state and the party which granted him authority over one entire office or several.
(2) the defendant acquiesced in, if he did not conceive, the idea of the government: “conquest of space by any means”.
(3) he has personally taken part in the development of this idea by his own activity.
As to Goering and Hess, the Court will undoubtedly excuse me from going into them at length. They were the designated successors of the Fuehrer. They belonged to the movement from the beginning. Hess took the responsibility for the racial laws. Both contributed to the government's political ideas of which in the eyes of the masses they were the living representatives. By their speeches, their lectures, they made this idea penetrate into all circles.
Goering actively contributed and in an essential way in the military and economy preparation of wars of aggression.
Goering is the creator of the Gestapo and the concentration camps where millions of supposed enemies of the government found their death, where genocide was finally and completely consummated.
A large part of his criminal activity is connected with the implementation of the 4 Years Plan, which, proof has been offered, was entirely directed towards the preparation for war. With others he is responsible for the deportation of workers, the brutalities exerted against them, of their allocation to sectors of production aimed against their own country. Furthermore he has taken part in the allocation of prisoners of war and political internees to works directly connected with the war effort of the Reich. He has organized the destruction of the economy and the looting of the occupied nations.
He has also organized, with the help of the Einsatzstab Rosenberg, the looting of works of art on a large scale, often with the aim of enriching his own collections.
By decree of the Fuehrer of 21 April 1933, Hess had received full powers to decide about all questions concerning the management of the party. He participated in the preparation of laws and decrees in general, and even in the preparation of the orders of the Fuehrer. He participated in the appointment of government officials and labor office chiefs. He strengthened the hold of the party on the internal life of Germany. He had a direct influence on the army and on foreign policy. The part which he played in the development of anti-semitism implicates him in the criminal consequences of the movement.
Ribbentrop was one of the king-pins of the party and state machine. Placed in the Wilhelmstrasse by Hitler who distrusted "old-fashioned" diplomats he worked with all his might to create diplomatic conditions favourable to the war of aggression, the essential means for realizing the conquest of space.
We recall the document submitted by our British colleagues and which establishes that Ribbentrop assured Ciano in August 1939 that Germany would make war even if Danzig and the corridor were ceded to her. As it has already been shown, he and his offices are involved in acts of terrorism and extermination in the occupied countries.
Concerning Keitel, my explanation will be equally short. The condition under which he agreed to be chosen by Hitler instead of von Fritsch and von Blomberg, to be placed at the head of the High Command of the Army and introduced into the councils of the government, his political activity in these posts, expressed by his presence at the side of the Fuehrer in Godesberg, later on during the discussions with Petain and Horthy, expressed again by the orders he signed and of which the order for implementation of the N.N. decree is not the least famous, show that it is not just a question of a mere soldier, but a politician general. His part in the arrests and massacres of patriots condemn him. Without any possible doubt he has participated in the exterminations, if only by abandoning to the police, for special treatment, certain classes of prisoners of war. Moreover, we recall the connections of his offices with the police and the armed force of the party.
In the year 1932 Kaltenbrunner became a member of the Party and of the SS in Austria. He became Secretary of State of the Security and the Police in Austria, afterwards Chief of Police in Vienna and Chief of RSHA (Reich Regent's Office) from 30 January up to the capitulation. During this last period he was responsible for the Gestapo, the Police, the Security Service and the concentration camps.
He was one of the most important heads of the criminal organization in realization of the policy of extermination and in accomplishing the annihilation of a race (genocide). His responsibility for the mass-murders has been established. He issued the orders of internment and execution.
“The measures of protective custody”, he says, “were measures justified by the war".
He also tries to make us believe he made a stand against the application of these measures. It is impossible to believe him. We have proof that he had full power over the camps.
We are aware of Rosenberg's important position in the 3rd Reich. A Department bore his name. Moreover, he was Minister of the Eastern Territories and Propagandist. In "Blood and Honor” (Blut und Ehre) he resumed and developed the thesis of the space due to the so-called German race. He starts from the unfounded affirmations that "the irradiation of Nordism gives its entire meaning to the evolution of humanity" and that "there is decadence wherever the Nordic culture, instead of condemning the Asiatics and the Jews to a permanent enslavement, mingles with these impure elements... He concluded by saying that the continent must be subjected to the concept of the German race "Blood and Honour”. To bring Germany back by all possible means to her racial purity was the subject of his speech at Nurnberg in 1933. He extolled the extermination of the Jews, and we know that it was not an oratorical phrase. Besides, he wrote in a report to the Fuehrer on 11 August 1942 (042-PS):
“Instructions aiming at keeping down the number of the population of the Ukraine and at the non-application of Article 218 of the German penal Code were studied last year and resumed on the occasion of a trip of the Director of the Ministry of Health
* * In the Ukraine measures have been taken with a view to preventing epidemics not in the interest of other races, but exclusively for the protection of the German occupation forces and for maintaining labour in the service of the German war indus
Finally he was implicated in the attack on Norway, and thanks to his special staff he proceeded to a methodical plundering of the artistic riches of Europe.
Frank is one of the very first adherents of the Party. He was its legal adviser and took part in the elaboration of the program. He was also the Fuehrer's advisor. He was Minister of Justice in Bavaria, then Minister of State charged with the coordinating of Reich Justice, and lastly Governor General of Poland. It is he who tried to give a legal shape to the State's and the Party's terroristic program of persecution and extermination. He defended the institution of concentration camps in the German "Legal Gazette" in 1936, and he proclaimed that the second fun