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"That later on in Iceland when I heard about the sinking of
the 'Athenia,' the idea came into my mind that the U-30 on
the 3 September 1939 might have sunk the 'Athenia,' es-
pecially since the Captain caused me to sign the above-men-
tioned declaration.
“That up to today I have never spoken to anyone concerning
these events.
“That due to the termination of the war I consider myself

freed from my oaths." (D-654) Doenitz's part in the "Athenia" episode is described in an affidavit which he has sworn, in English (D-638). At the end of the affidavit four words are added in Doenitz's handwriting, the significance of which will be adverted to shortly. Doenitz states:

"U-30 returned to harbor about Mid-September. I met the
captain, Oberleutnant Lemp, on the lockside at Wilhelms-
hafen, as the boat was entering harbor, and he asked per-
mission to speak to me in private. I noticed immediately
that he was looking very unhappy and he told me at once
that he thought he was responsible for the sinking of the
Athenia' in the North Channel area. In accordance with
my previous instructions, he had been keeping a sharp look-
out for possible armed merchant cruisers in the approaches
to the British Isles, and had torpedoed a ship he afterwards
identified as the 'Athenia' from wireless broadcasts, under
the impression that she was an armed merchant cruiser on
patrol. I had never specified in my instructions any particu-
lar type of ship as armed merchant cruiser nor mentioned
any names of ships. I despatched Lemp at once by air to
report to the SKL at Berlin; in the meantime, I ordered
complete secrecy as a provisional measure. Later the same
day or early on the following day, I received a verbal order
from Kapitaen zur See Fricke (head of the Operations Divi-
sion of the Naval War Staff] that :
“1. The affair was to be kept a total secret.
“2. The OKM considered that a court martial was not nec-
essary as they were satisfied that the captain had acted in
good faith.
"3. Political explanations would be handled by the OKM.
"I had had no part whatsoever in the political events in
which the Fuehrer claimed that no U-boat had sunk the
“After Lemp returned to Wilhelmshafen from Berlin, I in-
terrogated him thoroughly on the sinking and formed the
impression that although he had taken reasonable care, he

had still not taken sufficient precautions to establish fully the identity of the ship before attacking. I had previously given very strict orders that all merchant vessels and neutrals were to be treated according to naval prize law, before the occurrence of this incident. I accordingly placed him under cabin arrest, as I felt certain that a court-martial could only acquit him and would entail unnecessary publicity” whereat Doenitz has added the words, "and too much

time"). (D-638) Doenitz's suggestion that the captain of the U-30 sank the Atheniain mistake for a merchant cruiser must be considered in the light of Doenitz's order of 22 September 1939, that

“the sinking of a merchant ship must be justified in the War Diary as due to possible confusion with a warship or an aux

iliary cruiser.” (C-191) The U-30 returned to Wilhelmshaven on 27 September 1939. On that date another fraudulent entry was made in the War Diary of the Chief of U-boats:

"U-30 comes in. She had sunk: 'S.S. Blairlogie'; 'S.S. Fanad

There is no reference at all to the sinking of the "Athenia."

Perhaps the most elaborate forgery in connection with this episode was made on the log book of the U-30, which was responsible for sinking the "Athenia" (D-662). The Prosecution submits that the first page of that log book is a forgery which shows a curiously un-German carelessness about detail. It is clear on the original document that the first page of the text is a substitute for pages that have been removed. The dates in the first column of that page are in Arabic numerals. On the second and more authentic-looking page, and throughout the other pages of the log book, they are in Roman numerals. (D-662)

Furthermore, all reference to the sinking of the “Athenia" on 3 September is omitted. The log book shows that at 1400 hours on 3 September 1939 the position of the U-30 is given as AL 0278, which is one of the few positions quoted at all upon that page, and which was some 200 miles west of the position where the "Atheniawas sunk. The recorded course (due south) and the recorded speed (10 knots)—those entries are obviously designed to suggest that the U-30 was well clear of the "Athenia's" position on 3 September. (D-662)

Finally, the original shows Lemp's own signature upon the page dealing with 3 September differs from his other signature in the text. The difference appears in the final letter of his name. The signature in question shows a Roman “p”, whereas on the

other signatures there is a script "p.” The inference is that either the signature is a forgery or it was made by Lemp at some other, and probably considerably later, date. (D-662)

The story of the "Athenia" establishes that the German Navy under Raeder embarked upon deliberate fraud. Even before receiving Lemp's reports, the German Admiralty had repeatedly denied the possibility that a German U-boat could be in the area concerned. The charts which showed the disposition of U-boats and the position of sinking of the "Athenia" (discussed in Section 14 on Doenitz) have shown the dishonesty of these announcements. The conclusion to be drawn is this: Raeder, as head of the German Navy, knew all the facts. Censorship and information control in Nazi Germany were so complete that Raeder, as head of the Navy, must have been party to the falsification published in the “Voelkischer Beobachter," which was an attempt by the Nazi conspirators to save face with their own people and to uphold the myth of an infallible Fuehrer backed by an impeccable war machine.

(5) The Attack on Norway and Denmark. Truth mattered little in Nazi propaganda, and Raeder's camouflage was not confined to painting his ships or sailing them under the British flag, as he did in attacking Norway or Denmark. Raeder's proud comment upon the invasions of Denmark and Norway, in which he played a leading part, (see Section 9 of Chapter IX on aggression against Norway and Denmark), is contained in a letter of Raeder's to the Navy, which stated in part:

“The operations of the Navy in the occupation of Norway will for all time remain the great contribution of the Navy to this war." (C-155)

(6) The Attack on the U.S.S.R. With the occupation of Norway and much of Western Europe safely completed, Hitler turned his eyes towards Russia. Raeder was against the attack on Russia and tried his best to dissuade Hitler from embarking upon it. Raeder approached the problem with cynicism. He did not object to the aggressive war on Russia because of its illegality, its immorality, its inhumanity. His only objection to it was its untimeliness. He wanted to finish England first before going further afield.

The story of Raeder's part in the deliberations upon the war against Russia is told in extracts from a German compilation of official naval notes by the German Naval War Staff (C-170). The first entry, dated 26 September 1940, shows that Raeder was advocating to Hitler an aggressive Mediterranean policy, in which

the Navy would play a paramount role, as opposed to a continental land policy. The entry reads:

"Naval Supreme Commander with the Fuehrer: Naval Supreme Commander presents his opinion about the situation: the Suez Canal must be captured with German assistance. From Suez advance through Palestine and Syria; then Turkey in our power. The Russian problem will then assume a different appearance. Russia is fundamentally frightened of Germany. It is questionable whether action against Rus

sia from the North will then be still necessary.(C-170) The entry for 14 November reads:

“Naval Supreme Commander with the Fuehrer: Fuehrer is
still inclined to instigate the conflict with Russia. Naval
Supreme Commander recommends putting it off until the
time after the victory over England since there is heavy
strain on German forces and the end of warfare is not in
sight. According to the opinion of the Naval Supreme Com-
mander, Russia will not press for a conflict within the next
year, since she is in the process of building up her Navy
with Germany's help—38 cm. turrets for battleships, etc.:
thus, during these years she continues to be dependent upon

German assistance." (C-170)
And again, the entry for 27 December states:

“Naval Supreme Commander with the Fuehrer: Naval Su-
preme Commander emphasizes again that strict concentra-
tion of our entire war effort against England as our main
enemy is the most urgent need of the hour. On the one side
England has gained strength by the unfortunate Italian
conduct of the war in the eastern Mediterranean and by the
increasing American support. On the other hand, however,
she can be hit mortally by a strangulation of her ocean traffic
which is already taking effect. What is being done for sub-
marine and naval air force construction is much too little.
Our entire war potential must work for the conduct of the
war against England; thus for Navy and air force every
fissure of strength prolongs the war and endangers the final
success. Naval Supreme Commander voices serious objec-
tions against Russia campaign before the defeat of England.”

(C-170) The entry for 18 February 1941 reads as follows:

“Chief, Naval Operations (SKL) insists on the occupation

of Malta even before 'Barbarossa'.(C-170) The 23 February entry reads:

"Instruction from Supreme Command, Armed Forces

(OKW) that seizure of Malta is contemplated for the fall of

1941 after the execution of 'Barbarossa'.(C-170) The entry for 19 March 1941 shows that by March 1941 Raeder had begun to consider what prospects of naval action the Russian aggression had to offer. The entry states:

"In case of 'Barbarossa', Supreme Naval Commander describes the occupation of Murmansk as an absolute necessity for the Navy. Chief of the Supreme Command, Armed

Forces, considers compliance very difficult.” (C-170). In the meantime, the entries show that Mussolini was crying out for a more active Nazi Mediterranean policy. The entry for 30 May reads:

“[Duce] demands urgently decisive offensive Egypt-Suez for fall 1941; 12 divisions are needed for that; “This stroke would be more deadly to the British Empire than the capture of London’; Chief Naval Operations agrees completely.”

(C-170) Finally, the entry for 6 June indicates the strategic views of Raeder and the German Navy at that stage:

"Naval Supreme Commander with the Fuehrer: Memorandum of the Chief, Naval Operations. Observation on the strategic situation in the Eastern Mediterranean after the Balkan campaign and the occupation of Crete and further conduct of the war."

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“The memorandum points with impressive clarity to the decisive aims of the war in the Near East. Their advancement has moved into grasping distance by the successes in the Aegean area, and the memorandum emphasizes that the offensive utilization of the present favorable situation must take place with the greatest acceleration and energy, before England has again strengthened her position in the Near East with help from the United States of America. The memorandum realizes the unalterable fact that the campaign against Russia would be opened very shortly; demands, however, that the undertaking 'Barbarossa', which because of the magnitude of its aims naturally stands in the foreground of the operational plans of the armed forces leadership, must under no circumstances lead to an abandonment, diminishing delay of the conduct of the war in the Eastern

Mediterranean.(C-170) Thus Raeder, throughout, was seeking an active role for his Navy in the Nazi war plans.

Once Hitler had decided to attack Russia, Raeder sought a role


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