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General Order No. 16 on the
preparation of a landing operation
against England, 16 July 1940,
initialled by Jodl and Keitel....
Top Secret Fuehrer Order No. 21
signed by Hitler and initialled by
Jodl, Warlimont and Keitel, 18
December 1940, concerning the
Invasion of Russia (case Bar-
barossa). (USA 31)...
Speech of the Fuehrer at a confer-
ence, 23 November 1939, to which
all Supreme Commanders were
ordered. (USA 23).
Hitler's speech to Commanders-
in-Chief, at Obersalzberg, 22 Au-
gust 1939. (USA 29)....
Hitler's speech to Commanders-
in-Chief, 22 August 1939. (USA
Notes on conference between Hit-
ler and Matsuoka in presence of
Ribbentrop in Berlin, 4 April 1941.
(USA 33).
Directive from Blomberg to Su-
preme Commanders of Army,
Navy and Air Forces, 24 June
1935; accompanied by copy of
Reich Defense Law of 21 May
1935 and copy of Decision of Reich
Cabinet of 12 May 1935 on the
Council for defense of the Reich.
(USA 24)..
Memorandum "About the result
of today's discussion with State
Secretaries about Barbarossa", 2
May 1941. (USA 32).

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By 1933 the Nazi Party, the NSDAP, had reached very substantial proportions. At that time its plans called for the acquisition of political control of Germany. This was indispensable for consolidation, within the country, of all the internal resources and potentialities.

As soon as there was sufficient progress along this line of internal consolidation, the next step was to become disengaged from some of the external disadvantages of existing international limitations and obligations.

The restrictions of the Versailles Treaty were a bar to the development of strength in all the fields necessary if Germany were to make war. Although there had been an increasing amount of circumvention and violation from the very time that the Versailles Treaty came into effect, such operations under disguise and subterfuge could not attain proportions adequate for the objectives of the Nazis. To get the Treaty of Versailles out of the way was indispensable to the development of the extensive military power which they had to have for their purposes. It was as a part of the same plan and for the same reason that Germany withdrew from the Disarmament Conference and from the League of Nations. It was impossible for the Nazis to carry out their plan on the basis of existing international obligations or on the basis of the orthodox kind of future commitments.

Every military and diplomatic operation undertaken by the Nazis was preceded by a plan of action and a careful coordination of all participating forces. At the same time each event was part of a long prepared plan of aggression. Each represented a necessary step in the preparation of the schedule of aggressions which was subsequently carried out.

Three of the steps in preparation for aggression were first, the withdrawal from the Disarmament Conference and the League of Nations; second, the institution of compulsory military service; and, third, the reoccupation of the demilitarized zone of the Rhineland. Each of these steps was progressively more serious in the matter of international relations. In each of these steps Germany anticipated the possibility of sanctions being applied by other countries, and, particularly, a strong military action from France with the possible assistance of England. However, the conspirators were determined that nothing less than a preventive war would stop them, and they also estimated correctly that no one or combination of big powers would undertake the responsibility for such a war. The withdrawal from the Disarmament Conference and from the League of Nations was, of course, action that did not violate any international obligation. The League Covenant provided the procedure for withdrawal. These actions, however, cannot be disassociated from the general conspiracy and the plan for aggression. The announcement of the institution of universal military service was a more daring action. It was a violation of the Versailles Treaty, but the Nazis got away with it. Then came outright military defiance, with the occupation of the demilitarized zone of the Rhineland.

A. Planning to Overthrow the Versailles Treaty.

The determination and the plans of the Nazi conspirators to remove the restrictions of Versailles, started very early. This fact is confirmed by their own statements, their boasts of long planning and careful execution. Hitler, in his speech to all Supreme Commanders on 23 November 1939, stated that his primary goal was to wipe out Versailles (789-PS). And Jodl, as Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces, delivered an address after four years of war, on 7 November 1943, in which he traced the development of German strength (L-172). The seizure of power to him meant the restoration of fighting sovereignty, including conscription, occupation of the Rhineland, and rearmament, with special emphasis on modern armor and air forces. In his speech, entitled "The Strategic Position at the Beginning of the 5th Year of War," General Jodl gave a retrospective summary of the war for the benefit of the Reich and Gau leaders. He stated :

"Introduction: Reichsleiter Bormann has requested me to
give you a review today of the strategic position in the be-
ginning of the 5th Year of War.
"I must admit that it was not without hesitation that I
undertook this none too easy task. It is not possible to do it
justice with a few generalities. It is not necessary to say
openly what is. No one—the Fuehrer has ordered-may
know more or be told more than he needs for his own im-
mediate task, but I have no doubt at all in my mind, Gen-
tlemen, but that you need a great deal in order to be able to
cope with your tasks. It is in your Gaus, after all, and
among their inhabitants that all the enemy propaganda, the
defeatism, and the malicious rumours concentrate, that try
to find themselves a plan among our people. Up and down
the country the devil of subversion strides. All the cowards
are seeking a way out, or—as they call it—a political solu-
tion. They say, we must negotiate while there is still some-
thing in hand, and all these slogans are made use of to
attack the natural sense of the people, that in this war there
can only be a fight to the end. Capitulation is the end of
the Nation, the end of Germany. Against this wave of enemy
propaganda and cowardice you need more than force. You
need to know the true situation and for this reason I believe
that I am justified in giving you a perfectly open and un-
colored account of the state of affairs. This is no forbidden
disclosure of secrets, but a weapon which may perhaps help
you to fortify the morale of the people. For this war will
not only be decided by the force of arms but by the will of
the whole people. Germany was broken in 1918 not at the
front but at home. Italy suffered not military defeat but
morale defeat. She broke down internally. The result has
been not the peace she expected but—through the cowardice
of these criminal traitors—a fate thousand times harder
than continuation of the war at our side would have brought
to the Italian people. I can rely on you, Gentlemen, that
since I give concrete figures and data concerning our own
strength, you will treat these details as your secret; all the
rest is at your disposal without restriction for application in
your activities as leaders of the people.
"The necessity and objectives of this war were clear to all
and everyone at the moment when we entered upon the War
of Liberation of Greater Germany and by attacking parried

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