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The alleged "voluntary" character of the contribution is to be taken with considerable reserve in view of the admission contained in Seyss-Inquart's Top Secret report of 29 May to 19 July 1940, that the voluntary nature of previous financial and economic measures was in reality fictional. (997-PS)
However, the question whether or not the contribution is to be deemed at the direction of Seyss-Inquart or was in fact "voluntary” is immaterial. It is manifest that the then President of the Netherlands Bank and Treasurer in the Ministry of Finance, van Tonnigen, acted in the German interest and to the detriment of the Netherlands. His acts are attributable to the responsible head of the German Civil Administration in the Netherlands and the individual to whom he owed his appointment, Seyss-Inquart.
(e). Participation in activities of Einsatzstab Rosenberg. Seyss-Inquart, in his capacity as Reich Commissar for the Occupied Netherlands territory, also cooperated with and acquiesced in the activities of the Einsatzstab Rosenberg in the territory under his jurisdiction. He is therefore responsible for his actions in this regard, which constituted crimes under Article 6. (b) of the Charter and violations of Articles 46, 47, and 56 of the Hague Regulations, 1907.
(The Einsatzstab Rosenberg, which commenced as a research library project, developed into a systematic program for the wholesale looting of art treasures and cultural objects in the conquered territories. Its activities are discussed in Chapter XIV.)
Implication of Seyss-Inquart in the criminal activities of the Einsatzstab Rosenberg is revealed in a detailed progress report of its chief Netherlands representative, Schimmer. The first paragraph of this report states as follows:
"The Working Group Netherland of the Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg began its work in agreement with the competent representative of the Reichkommissar during the first days of September 1940. The execution of the post, conforming with the Fuehrer's orders, coordinated itself with the liquidation, that is confiscation, according to civil law, of the various subversive institutions-as set forth in the circulars of the OKW, dated 5 July 1940, and of the Chief of the OKW to the Commander in Chief of the Wehrmacht in France, dated 17 September 1940, as well as to the Commander in Chief of the OKW in the Netherlands, dated 30 October 1940. The screening of the material of the various Masonic lodges was taken care of primarily, and the library and the archives of the following lodges were sifted and all useful material was packed.” (176-PS)
There follows the specification of some 92 Masonic IOOF Lodges and Rotary Clubs which were screened and yielded 470 cases of valuable objects. Also, a large number of libraries and scientific and cultural institutions were listed with the statement that all books and archives contained therein were being catalogued preparatory to shipment to Germany. (176-PS)
The report concludes with the following statement indicating close integration in the Netherlands between Rosenberg's program of grand larceny and Seyss-Inquart's anti-Jewish program, viz:
“The Working Group, in executing the afore-mentioned tasks, is bound strictly to the pace set by the Reichskommissar for the handling of the Jewish questions and that of the international organizations. This pace again is determined by the political evolution which is taking shape according to decisions made on a higher level, and which must
not be hampered by individual acts." (176-PS) Other documents captured from Rosenberg's files remove any doubt whatever as to Seyss-Inquart's full knowledge of the criminal activities of the Einsatzstab Rosenberg in Holland and his participation therein. On 11 September 1944 Rosenberg informed Seyss-Inquart by letter that orders had been issued for the seizure and transportation to Germany of the library of the Social Institute in Amsterdam. (091-PS; see also 1621-PS, a secret letter from Reichsfuehrer SS (Himmler) ordering SS Gen. Rauter in the Hague to seize medical apparatus at the Universities of Leyden and Utrecht with the aid of Seyss-Inquart.)
(f) Conscription of civilian labor. In his capacity as Reich Commissar for the occupied Netherlands territories Seyss-Inquart authorized and directed the deportation of vast numbers of Netherlands nationals to the Reich for forced labor in the instruments of German war production. These acts were all in violation of Articles 6 (b) and (c) of the Charter; Articles 6, 23h, 46, and 52 of the Hague Regulations, 1907 (3737-PS); and the Prisoner of War Convention, Geneva, 1929. (3738-PS)
The deportation program in the Netherlands was initiated on 20 June 1940, five weeks after the occupation of that country. The Germans at first deported only the unemployed, threatening them with curtailment of their dole for refusal. Thereafter in 1942 measures were taken to draft employed workmen. Dutch business concerns were combed in “Sauckel-actions" for available workers, who were forced to register at the labor offices. Workmen who refused were prosecuted by the SD, committed to one of the prisoners' camps in the Netherlands, and eventually put to work in Germany. By the end of April 1942 the program was in full operation, and not less than 22,000 workers were deported that month. Many Belgian concerns not considered essential were closed down to release manpower for deportation to Germany or for work in Dutch industries deemed essential to the German war effort. New measures of a drastic nature were inaugurated in the spring of 1943. All males between 18 and 35 were forced to register for "arbeitseinsatz" (war effort), which was synonymous with deportation. As time elapsed and the German military situation deteriorated, the measures taken became increasingly more ruthless. Whole sections of a town were lined off and people were seized in the streets or in their homes and transported to Germany. A total of approximately 431,500 Netherlands workers were deported to Germany and other foreign countries. (1726-PS)
Illustrative of the participation of Seyss-Inquart in the slave labor program are four proclamations which he caused to be issued, calling up Dutch civilians between certain ages for forced labor and threatening them with shooting in the case of noncompliance. (1162-PS)
Sauckel, General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labor, on 5 October 1945 disclosed, under oath, the part played by SeyssInquart in the forced recruitment of Dutch workers for German war production. The following is an excerpt from an interrogation of Sauckel:
“Q. For a moment I want to turn our attention to Holland.
the same applied to the other countries.” (3722-PS) Seyss-Inquart has himself acknowledged under oath his active participation in deporting 250,000 Netherlands workmen between the ages of 17 and 42 toward the end of 1944, although he attempted to shift responsibility by stating that the order was issued by the Wehrmacht and that "I can't intervene against the Wehrmacht." However, he admitted :
"I didn't oppose it. I helped to carry it out in my province.” (Transcript of Interrogation of Seyss-Inquart, afternoon session, 18 September 1945, pp. 19-20.)
(9) Murder and ill-treatment of civilian population, including killing of hostages. Seyss-Inquart, in his capacity as Reich Commissar for the Occupied Netherlands Territory, authorized and directed the exaction of collective penalties, murder, and illtreatment of the civilian population of the Netherlands, and the killing of hostages. All these actions constituted war crimes and crimes against humanity within the meaning of Article 6 (b) and (c) of the Charter, and violated (i) the Hague Regulations, 1907, Articles 46 and 50, (ii) the laws and customs of war, (iii) the general principles of criminal law as derived from the criminal laws of all civilized nations and (iv) the internal penal laws of Netherlands.
Public utterances of Seyss-Inquart reveal his determination to resort to ruthless measures for the purpose of intimidating and repressing the civilian population. In a speech commemorating the 10th Anniversary of Germany's coming into power, at Weert on 29 January 1943, before workers and trades of the NSDAP, he spoke in part as follows:
"I will give my instructions. They must be executed by all. In the present situation a refusal to execute such instructions could be regarded only as sabotage. It is also clear, now more than ever, that every resistance which is directed against this fight for existence must be suppressed. Some time ago the representatives of the churches had written to the Wehrmacht commander and to me, and they presented their conception against the execution of death sentences which the Wehrmacht commanders announced in the meantime. To this I can only say the following: The moment in which our men, fathers and sons with iron determination look towards their fate in the east and unflinchingly and steadfastly perform their highest pledge, it is unbearable to tolerate conspiracies whose goal is to weaken the rear of this eastern front. Whoever dares this must be annihilated. We must be severe and become even more severe against our opponents, this is the command of a relentless sequence of events, and for us perhaps humanly hard, but our holy duty. We remain human because we do not torture our opponents,
we must remain firm by annihilating them.” (3430-PS) Endorsement of the policy of holding innocent persons responsible for the misconduct of others beyond their control is implicit in the following public statement of Seyss-Inquart made at Weert on 8 January 1945:
“I have given orders to suppress all appearances with a severeness corresponding to the brutality of the crime. If in connection with these measures Dutch citizens are affected and have to undergo difficulties and limitations of special nature, then they have to seek the cause therefor solely in these eruptions of the anarchistic mental attitude of a few culprits and the just-as-criminal-tolerance or apathy within their
own circles." (3430-PS) Evidence of Seyss-Inquart's application of this doctrine of vicarious responsibility is contained in a poster signed by him and warning the Dutch population to expect reprisals in the event of sabotage. The poster reads as follows:
"The Hague 24 Sept 1944
Occupied Netherlands Territories." (1163–PS) Another poster issued by the Superior SS and Police Chief publicized with remarkable candor the fact that 12 Netherlanders were executed "independent of further investigation" as reprisals for the killing of two Germans. That poster reads as follows:
"NOTICE "The Superior SS and Police Chief gives notice that on 20 November 1944 Schutzgruppenmann Janssen and on 13 December 1944 the Senior Officer Candidate Guse were shot in the back by criminal Netherlands elements. Both were robbed of their pistols. "Independent of further investigation of the perpetrators, two houses were blasted and 12 Netherlanders were executed at the place of one of the crimes as reprisals.
"The Hague, 16 Dec 1944." (1163-PS) In an interrogation under oath Seyss-Inquart has acknowledged that Netherlanders were shot as hostages without trial. While he sought to shift responsibility to the SS he admitted that upon one