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and said that Article 88 of the Treaty of St. Germain was

now inoperative.” (3425-PS; L-231) In his memorandum entitled “The Austrian Question" SeyssInquart describes his meeting with Hitler as follows:

"In the afternoon, I flew with Himmler to Linz and drove then to meet Hitler. Hitler entered Linz in the evening. I never saw such an enthusiasm. The welcome was spontaneous and of no precedence. In my (welcome) speech I declared that Article 88 of the St. Germain Treaty was no longer bind

ing.” (3254-PS; 2485-PS) Seyss-Inquart then drove back to Vienna on the morning of 13 March 1938. His Secretary of State for Security begged that he be allowed to resign, a decision he reached as a result of a conversation with Himmler, which had caused him to fear for his own personal welfare. Seyss-Inquart then nominated Kaltenbrunner for State Secretary for Security, and the nomination was accepted by President Miklas. About noon State Under Secretary Stuckart of the German Reich Ministry of the Interior brought a proposal for a reannexation act uniting Austria to Germany, and announced Hitler's wish for prompt execution of it. Seyss-Inquart then called a meeting of his Council of Ministers, and on his proposal the council adopted the act. (3254-PS)

Seyss-Inquart, realizing that if the President of Austria resigned his office, then he, Seyss-Inquart, would be the successor, went to President Miklas with the information about the action of the Council of Ministers. Seyss-Inquart describes this meeting with President Miklas as follows:

"In the case where the Bund President would, for any reason, either have resigned his functions or be, for some time, impeded in fulfilling them, his prerogatives were to go over to the Bund Chancellor, I went to the Bund President with Dr. Wolff. The President told me that he did not know whether this development would be of welfare to the Austrian Nation, but that he did not wish to interfere and preferred to resign his functions, so that all rights would come into my hands, according to the Constitution. The possibility of my dismissal or resignation were only slightly mentioned and recognized as inopportune in the prevailing situation."

(3254-PS) President Miklas then resigned and Seyss-Inquart succeeded to his office. (2466-PS)

Thereafter Seyss-Inquart signed the Act uniting Austria with Germany and hurried back to Linz to report this news to Hitler:

"Then there were some letters exchanged between the Bund President and myself, confirming our conversation and his retirement. Thereafter I drove to Linz, where I arrived around mid-night and reported to the Fuehrer the accomplishment of the Anschluss Law. Hitler was very much impressed by it; for a while he remained quiet, then tears dropped from his eyes down his cheeks. He said then that he was especially happy because his Motherland had achieved her annex

ation to the Reich without any shedding of blood.(3254-PS) On 14 March 1938 Hitler entered Vienna. On 15 March 1938 there was a public demonstration in Vienna and Hitler introduced Seyss-Inquart as "Reich Statthalter for Austria." Hitler then put him in charge of the Civil Administration of Austria, while political matters were assigned to Gauleiter Josef Buerckel, who shortly thereafter was made Reich Commissar for the Anschluss. (3425-PS)

(10) Despite Seyss-Inquart's modesty since arrest and indictment, his fellow Nazi conspirators recognized the importance of his part in the Austrian Anschluss.

Goering made a speech in Vienna on 26 March 1938 in which he said:

“At this moment [announcement of the plebiscite in Austria) it has been established that now the decision really came. A complete unanimity between the Fuehrer and the N. S. confidants inside of Austria existed. According to their opinion also the hour of action had come, but they thought they could not use any more democratic methods in negotiations and they took the law of action in their own strong hands and forced the others to retreat. If the N. S. rising succeeded so quickly and thoroughly without bloodshed, it is first of all due to the intelligent and decisive firmness of the present Reichsstatthalter Seyss-Inquart and his confidants. But this too proved the correctness of the previous continued politics because if our confidants had not been in the government, this whole course of events would not have been possible.”

(3270-PS) According to Dr. Rainer, Hitler and the general public gave Seyss-Inquart credit for playing the leading role in the annexation of Austria by Germany. This is evidenced by the covering letter written by Dr. Rainer, dated 6 July 1939, to Reich Commissar Gauleiter Josef Buerckel :

*

“We had the impression that the general opinion, perhaps also Hitler's own, was that the liberation depended more upon Austrian matters of state rather than the Party. To be more exact, Hitler especially mentioned Seyss-Inquart alone; and public opinion gave him alone credit for the change and thus

believed him to have played the sole leading role." (812-PS) In his report to Reich Commissar Buerckel, Dr. Rainer said:

"But as a result of the agreement at Berchtesgaden and the statement of the Fuehrer made to him during his state visit to Berlin, Seyss-Inquart was the personal trustee of the Fuehrer and directly responsible to him for the illegal NSDAP in Austria within the confines of his political sphere.

The seizure of power was the work of the party supported by the Fuehrer's threat of invasion and the legal standing of Seyss-Inquart in the government. “The national result in the form of the taking over of the government by Seyss-Inquart was due to the actual seizure of power by the Party on one hand and the political efficiency

of Dr. Seyss-Inquart in his territory on the other." (812-PS) Hans Frank recognized the importance of the services rendered by Seyss-Inquart to the Nazi cause in Austria. When Seyss-Inquart was about to leave Poland to become Reich commissar of the Occupied Netherlands Territories, Frank extolled him as follows:

“But your name without that is shining like a light through the history of the Third Reich, since you are the creator of the National Socialist Austria." (3465--PS)

(11) The Nazi conspirators within the German Reich evidenced their intentions of annexing Austria in many ways. Hitler, on the first page of Chapter 1 of Mein Kampf, said:

"Today it seems to me providential that Fate should have
chosen Braunau on the Inn as my birthplace. For this little
town lies on the boundary between two German states which
we of the younger generation at least have made it our life
work to reunite by every means at our disposal.
"German-Austria must return to the great German Mother
Country, and not because of any economic considerations.
No, and again no: even if such a union were unimportant
from an economic point of view; yes, even if it were harmful,
it must nevertheless take place. One blood demands one
Reich. Never will the German Nation possess the moral
right to engage in Colonial politics until, at least, it embraces
its own sons within a single state. Only when the Reich

borders include the very last German, but can no longer guarantee his daily bread, will the moral right to acquire foreign soil arise from the distress of our own people. Their sword will become our plow, and from the tears of war the

daily bread of future generations will grow.” Seyss-Inquart devoted his efforts to legalize the sale and circulation of Mein Kampf in Austria. His letter to Keppler, German Secretary of State for Austrian Affairs, contained the following passage.

"The Teinfaltstrasse is very well informed even if not in detail about my efforts regarding the re-permission of the book

"Mein Kampf'.” (3392-PS) Goering and Schacht both told an American diplomat that it was Germany's determination to annex Austria and Sudetenland to the Reich. (L-151)

One of the missions of von Papen, as German Ambassador to Austria, was to effect a change in the personnel of the Austrian Cabinet headed by Chancellor von Schuschnigg and to eliminate anti-Nazi opposition, particularly in the Ministry of Interior and Security. (2246-PS)

The German Reich applied economic pressure upon Austria. One of the means adopted was the law of 24 March 1933, which required payment of 1,000 Reichs Marks by every German crossing the border into Austria (3467-PS). Kurt von Schuschnigg, former Chancellor of Austria, in his affidavit of 19 November 1945, described this economic pressure upon Austria by Germany in the following words:

During my tenure of office as Federal Chancellor of Austria, more particularly on the 11th day of July, 1936, I negotiated with the then existing government of the German Reich, and with Adolf Hitler, an Agreement more particularly known as the Agreement of 11 July 1936. “I further depose and say that prior to the consummation of the aforesaid Agreement, the German Government had placed certain economic barriers against trade between Germany and Austria such as-to-wit—the 1,000 mark barrier which said barrier provided that any German citizen who crosses the border of Germany into Austria is obliged to pay to the German Government the sum of 1,000 German Reichs Marks for the privilege thereof-Austria had been accustomed before this edict of the German Government to receive into Austria some one hundred thousand visitors from Germany annually. "I further state that the aforesaid barrier placed against

Austria was extremely injurious to Austrian agriculture and

industrial interests." (2994-PS) Jodl stated in his diary that in 1938 the aim of German policy was the elimination of Austria and Czechoslovakia. The will of resistance in both countries was undermined by pressure on the government as well as by propaganda and the fifth column. At the same time German military preparations for attack were worked out (1780-PS). ("Case Otto" was the code name for the Austrian campaign, and "Case Green" was the code name for the battle plans against Czechoslovakia.)

Jodl also stated in his diary that when Chancellor von Schuschnigg announced the proposed plebiscite for 13 March 1938, Hitler was determined to intervene. Goering, General Reichenau, and Minister Glaise-Horstenau were called before Hitler. "Case Otto" was to be prepared, and the mobilization of army units and air forces was ordered on 10 March 1938. The march into Austria took place on 11 March 1938. (1780-PS)

(12) Hitler and the Nazi conspirators completed the annexation of Austria by decree. On 11 March 1938 Hitler issued a directive regarding "Case Otto" addressed to the German armed forces, classified Top Secret, in which he stated that, if other measures proved useless, his intentions were to invade Austria with armed force. The directive prescribed operational duties and assigned objectives. It further provided that resistance was to be broken up ruthlessly with armed force. (C-102)

Later on that same day, at 8:45 p. m., Hitler issued a second directive, which stated in substance, that the demands of the German ultimatum to Austria had not been fulfilled, and for that reason the entry of German armed forces into Austria would commence at daybreak on 12 March 1938. He directed that all objectives were to be reached by exerting all forces to the full as quickly as possible. (C-182)

On 13 March 1938 Germany in violation of Article 80 of the Treaty of Versailles, formally incorporated Austria into the Reich by decree and declared it to be a province of the German Reich. (2307-PS)

Officials of the Province of Austria were then required by decree to take an oath of personal obedience to Hitler. Jews were barred from taking this oath, and thus could not retain offices and positions previously held. (2311-PS)

Members of the Austrian Army were required to take an oath of personal allegiance to Hitler as their Supreme Commander. (2936-PS)

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