4000bce - 399
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1900 - 1999
M. HERZOG: Mr. President, Your Honors, at the end of yesterday's session I was expounding to the Tribunal the conditions under which the compulsory labor service was progressively imposed in France. I reached the second action of the Defendant Sauckel as set out in the laws and decrees of 16 February 1943. Sauckel's second action accelerated the enforced enrollment of Frenchmen during the months of February and March 1943. Several tens of thousands of young men of the 1940 and 1942 classes were deported to Germany by the application of the law of 16 February. The tempo of these deportations slowed down in the month of April, but the Arbeitseinsatz immediately formulated new requirements. On 9 April 1943 the Defendant Sauckel asked the French authorities to furnish him with 120,000 workers during the month of May and 100,000 during the month of June. In June he made it known that he wished to effect the transfer of 500,000 workers up to 31 December.
Sauckel's third action was about to begin. It was to be marked, on 3 June 1943, by the total mobilization of the 1942 class. All exemptions provided by the law of 16 February and subsequent texts were withdrawn, and the young men of the 1942 class were tracked down throughout France.
In reality, Sauckel's third action was especially manifested by violent pressure on the part of the defendant, tending towards mass deportation by forced recruiting. I offer in evidence three documents which testify to the action taken by Sauckel in the summer of 1943.
The first document is a letter from Sauckel to Hitler, dated 27 June 1943. Drafted by the defendant upon his return from a trip to France, it contains an outlined plan for the recruiting of French workers for the second half of 1943. Its object was, on the one hand, to secure I million workers to be assigned in France to French armament factories and, on the other hand, 500,000 French workers to be deported to Germany. This letter constitutes Document 556(39)-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-65. I quote:
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"Weimar, 27 June 1943.
"Herewith I beg to report my return from my official trip to France.
"Inasmuch as the free labor reserves in the territories occupied by the German Armed Forces have been, numerically, absorbed to saturation point, I am now carefully examining the possibilities of mobilizing additional labor reserves in the Reich and the occupied territories to work on German war production.
"In my reports of 20 April I was allowed to point out that intensive and careful utilization must be made of European labor forces in territories submitted to direct German influence.
"It was the purpose of my recent stay in Paris to investigate the possibilities still existing in France for the recruitment of labor by extensive conferences and my own personal inspection. On the basis of a carefully established balance sheet I have come to the following decision:
"1. Assuming that war economy measures are carried out in France which would at least prove partially effective or approximately approach, in efficacy, the measures carried out in Germany, a further million workers, both men and women, could be assigned to the French war and armament industries up to December 1943 for work on German orders and assignments. In this case additional German orders might be placed in France.
"2. In consideration of these measures and given a careful study of the subject together with the co-operation of our German armament services and the German labor recruiting offices, it should be possible to transfer a further 500,000 workers, both men and women, from France to the Reich between now and the end of the year.
"The prerequisites for the realization of this program, drafted by me are as follows:
"1. Closest collaboration between all German offices especially in dealing with the French services.
"2. A constant check on French economy by joint commissions, as already agreed upon by the Reich Minister of Armaments and War Production Party Member Speer, and myself.
"3. Constant, skillful, and successful propaganda against the cliques of De Gaulle and Giraud.
"4. The guarantee of adequate food supplies to the French population working for Germany.
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"5. An emphatic insistence on this urgency before the French Government, in particular before Marshal Petain, who still represents the main obstacle to the further recruiting of French women for compulsory labor.
"6. A pronounced increase in the program which I have already introduced in France, for retraining workers to trades essential to war production."
I skip the next and read the last paragraph:
"I therefore beg you, my Fuehrer to approve my suggestion of making available I million French men and women for German war production in France proper in the second half of 1943 and, in addition, of transferring 500,000 French men and women to the Reich before the end of the current year.
"Yours faithfully and obediently,"-Signed-"Fritz Sauckel."
The document to which I would now like to call the Tribunal"s's attention proves that the Fuehrer gave his approval to Sauckel's program. A note drawn up on 28 July 1943 by Dr. Stothfang, under the letter-head of the Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor (Arbeitseinsatz), gives a report on a discussion between Sauckel and the Fuehrer It is Document 556(41)-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-66. I shall limit myself to reading the last paragraph:
"d) The transfer envisaged for the end of the year of 1 million French workers to the war industries in France, and the intended transportation of 500,000 other French workers to the interior of the Reich has been approved by the Fuehrer
Finally a document establishes that the Defendant Sauckel, on the strength of Hitler's approval, attempted to realize his program by working on the French authorities. This document is a letter from Sauckel to Hitler. It is dated 13 August 1943, upon the defendant's return from a trip to France, Belgium, and Holland. It is Document 556(43)-PS. I shall read it to the Tribunal. It is Exhibit Number RF-67:
"Weimar, 13 August 1943.
"I beg to report my return from my official trip to France, Belgium and Holland. In tough, difficult, and tedious negotiations I have imposed upon the occupied Western territories, for the last 5 months of 1943, the program set forth below and have prepared very detailed measures for realizing it: In France-with the military commander, the German Embassy, and the French Government; in Belgium-with the
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military commander; and in Holland with the offices of the Reich Commissioner.
"The program provides:
"1. In France the transfer of I million French workers, both men and women, from the civilian to the German war industries in France. This measure will enable further considerable placing of German orders in France.
"2. Soliciting and recruiting of 500,000 French workers for work in Germany. This figure should not be made known publicly.
"3. In order to stalemate any passive resistance from large groups of French officials, I have ordered, in agreement with the military commander in France, the introduction of labor recruiting commissions for each two French departments and placed them under the supervision and direction of the German Gau offices. Only in this manner can the complete recruitment of the French labor potential and its intensive utilization be made possible. The French Government has given its approval."
If the Tribunal will allow me, I shall quote the rest of this letter; the following paragraphs concern Belgium and Holland. It will allow me to refer to this document later without reading it again:
"4. A program was secured in Belgium for the employment of 150,000 workers in the Reich and, with the approval of the military commander in Belgium, an organization for compulsory labor corresponding to that in France was decided upon."
I skip and proceed to the fifth paragraph:
"5. A program has likewise been prepared for Holland, providing for the transfer of 150,000 workers to Germany and of 100,000 workers, men and women, from Dutch civilian industries to German war production."
Such was Sauckel's program in 1943. His plan was partly thwarted by the resistance of officials and patriotic workers. Proof of this is furnished by an admission of the defendant. I am referring to the report on a conference of the central office for the Four Year Plan held on 1 March 1944. 1 submitted this document to the Tribunal yesterday as Exhibit Number RF-30 (Document R-124). I shall read from the first page of the French translation, second paragraph, German text, Page 1768:
"Last autumn, as far as foreign manpower is concerned, the labor recruiting program has been severely battered. I do not wish to elaborate on the reasons here. They have been
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discussed at length; all I have to say is: The program has been wrecked."
Sauckel, however, was not discouraged by the difficulties encountered in 1943. In 1944 he attempted to realize a new program by the trick of his fourth action.
The National Socialist authorities decided to secure, in 1944, the transfer of 4 million foreign workers to Germany. This decision was made on 4 January 1944 during a conference at the headquarters of the Fuehrer and in his presence. The report on this conference constitutes Document 1292-PS. I submit it herewith to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-68, and I read from Page 3 of the French translation, Page 6 of the German original, last paragraph:
"Final results of the conference:
"I. The Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor shall procure at least 4 million new workers from the occupied territories."
The details concerning the contingents demanded from each occupied territory must have been determined on 16 February 1944, during a conference of the central office for the Four Year Plan. I submitted the report of this session at the outset of my explanations, under Exhibit Number RF-20. I am quoting the conclusions today. They will be found in Document Number F-675, first page of the translation, third page of the German original.
"Results of the 53rd session of the Central Planning Board. Labor recruiting in 1944.
"1. About 500,000 new workers might be mobilized from German home reserves by extraordinary efforts ......
I skip the rest.
"2. Recruiting of Italian labor to the number of 1,500,000; of these-1 million at the rate of 250,000 per month from January to April and 500,000 from May to December;
"3. Recruiting of 1 million French workers at equal monthly rates from I February to 31 December 1944 (approximately 91,000 per month);
"4. Recruiting of 250,000 workers from Belgium; "5. Recruiting of 250,000 workers from the Netherlands."
I abstain from quoting since the other paragraphs concern the Eastern European countries.
The Tribunal has seen that France was called upon to furnish a large contingent of workers. After the 15th of January, Sauckel went to Paris to dictate his demands to the French authorities.
The fourth Sauckel action consisted of two distinct measures: The adoption of the procedure known as the combing of industries,
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and the publication of the law of I February 1944, which widened the sphere of application of compulsory labor. The system of combing the industries led the labor administration to carry out direct recruiting in the industrial enterprises. Mixed Franco-German commissions were set up in each country. They determined the percentage of workers to be deported. They proceeded to requisition and transfer them.
The practice of combing the industries represents the realization. of the projects elaborated by Defendant Sauckel as early as 1943. In the documents which I have read to the Tribunal Sauckel announced, in fact, his intention of creating mixed labor commissions.
The law of 1 February 1944 marked the culminating point of Sauckel's actions in the field of legislation. It extends the scope of application of the law of 4 September 1942. As from February 1944 all men between the ages of 16 and 60 and all women between the ages of 18 and 45 were subject to compulsory labor. I submit to the Tribunal the law of 1 February 1944 under Exhibit Number RF-69 (Document RF-69) with the request judicial notice be taken of it.
The proof of the pressure that Sauckel exerted on the French authorities in order to impose on them the publication of this law is furnished by a report of the defendant to Hitler. This report is dated 25 January 1944. It was, therefore, drafted during. the negotiations which characterized the fourth Sauckel action. It constitutes Document 556(55)-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal under Exhibit Number RF-70. I shall read this document:
"On the 22d of January 1944 the French Government, together with Marshal Petain, accepted to a large degree my demands for increasing the working week from 40 to 48 hours as well as for extending the compulsory labor law in France and utilizing French manpower in Germany.
"The Marshal did not agree to the compulsory labor for French women in the Reich; but he did agree to compulsory labor for women inside France, limited to women between the ages of 26 and 45. Women between 15 and 25 are to be employed only at their place of residence.
"Since this, nevertheless, represents appreciable progress in comparison with the extremely difficult negotiations which I had to conduct in Paris, I approved this law in order to save further loss of time, on condition that the German demands were energetically met and carried out.
"The French Government has likewise accepted my demand that French officials sabotaging the enforcement of the
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compulsory labor law should be punished by severe penalties including the death penalty. I have left no doubt that further and more rigid measures will be adopted if the demands for the manpower required are not fulfilled.
"Your ever obedient and faithful, Fritz Sauckel."
I draw the attention of the Tribunal to the problem of compulsory labor of women referred to in the two preceding documents. For a long time the French authorities categorically opposed the introduction of female labor. In return the Defendant Sauckel did not cease to exercise violent pressure.
On the 27th of June 1943, in a letter to Hitler, he suggested that an energetic statement of German needs be made before the French Government. I have already quoted this letter to the Tribunal, Exhibit Number RF-65 (Document 556(39)-PS). I shall not revert to it, but I emphasize the fact that the law of I February did not satisfy Sauckel and did not in the least appease his demands at all. His dissatisfaction and his determination to pursue his policy of compulsion become apparent from a report of 26 April 1944, bearing his signature; that the report has been forwarded is certified by Berk, one of his assistants.
There actually were four reports submitted jointly under Document Number 1289-PS, Exhibit Number RF-71, and I quote from the second page:
"1.) France. The problem of women.
"At the time of the promulgation of the French compulsory labor law, the French authorities (Marshal Petain, in particular) have urgently desired that women be exempted from performing compulsory labor in Germany. In spite of serious objections the G.B.A. approved of this exemption. The reservation was made, however, that the approval was given on condition that the contingents imposed were met; or else the G.B.A. would reserve himself the right of taking further measures. Inasmuch as the contingents are far from being met, the demand for extending the compulsory labor service to women must also be addressed to the French Government."
The fourth Sauckel action, therefore, was led in such a manner as to utilize all of France's manpower. The French resistance and the development of the military operations hindered the execution of the Sauckel plan. The defendant, in the meantime, had contemplated extraordinary measures to be taken on the day the allied armies were to land. I quote again Document 1289-PS, Exhibit Number RF-71; and I read on Page 3:
"Measures concerning compulsory labor in the case of invasion:
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"To some extent precautions already have been taken to evacuate the population of those areas invaded and to protect valuable manpower from being seized by our enemies. In view of the actual situation of labor utilization in Germany, it is necessary to induct efficient workers to the greatest extent possible into efficacious employment within the Reich. Orders to this -effect on the part of the Wehrmacht are indispensable for carrying out these measures.
"The following text might be proposed for an order by the Fuehrer I shall not read the text of the order proposed by Sauckel.
The Allied victory, however, came so quickly that Sauckel did not have the chance to realize fully his plan of mass deportation. All the same, he started to carry it out, and deportations of workers went on up to the day of liberation of the territory. Several hundred thousand French workers were finally stationed in Germany as a result of the various Sauckel actions. Will the Tribunal please bear this in mind. The compulsory labor service was introduced in Norway in the same manner as in France. The defendants imposed upon the Norwegian authorities the publication of a law instituting the compulsory registration of Norwegian citizens, and prescribing their enrollment by force. I quote in this respect the preliminary report on the crimes of Germany against Norway, a report prepared by the Norwegian Government and submitted to the Tribunal as Document Number UK-79. I now submit it as Exhibit Number RF-72, and I quote from the first page, third paragraph:
"The result of Sauckel's order as to Norway was that on 3 February 1943, a Quisling 'law' relating to compulsory registration of Norwegian men and women for so-called 'national labor effort' was promulgated. Terboven and Quisling openly admitted that the law was promulgated in order that the Norwegian people should use their manpower for tile benefit of the German war effort. In a speech on 2 February Terboven stated, among other things, that he himself, and the German Reich stood behind this law; and he threatened to use force against anyone who tried to prevent its execution."
In Belgium and in the Netherlands the German authorities used a direct procedure. The compulsory, labor service was organized by ordinances of the occupying power.
In Belgium these were ordinances of the military commander and in the Netherlands ordinances of the Reich Commissioner. I remind the Tribunal of the fact that the authority of the military commander in Belgium extended to the north of France.
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An ordinance of 6 March 1942 established the principle of compulsory labor in Belgium. It was published in the Belgian VerordnungsbIatt of 1942, Page 845. 1 submit it to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-73, and I ask the Tribunal to take judicial notice of it. The ordinance of 6 March excluded the possibility of forced deportation of workers to Germany. However, such deportation was ordered by a decree of 6 October 1942, which was published in the Belgian Verordnungsblatt of 1942, Page 1060. 1 submitted it to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-57 in the course of my explanations.
These carryings-on in Belgium gave rise to interventions and protests by leading Belgian personalities, among others the King of Belgium and Cardinal Van Roay.
The ordinances instituting compulsory labor in Belgium and the north of France bore the signature of General Von Falkenhausen, but the latter proclaimed his ordinance of 6 October on the order of Sauckel. I refer once more to the testimony of General Von Falkenhausen, which I have submitted to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-15. I ask your permission to quote the following passages, first page, fifth paragraph:
"Q: 'On 6 October 1942 a decree was published which instituted compulsory labor in Belgium and in the departments of northern France for men between the ages of 18 and 50 years and for single women from 21 to 25 years.'
"A: 'I was Commander-in-Chief for northern France and Belgium.'
"Q: 'Does the witness recall having promulgated this decree?'
"A: 'I do not remember exactly the text of this decree because it was issued following long arguments with the labor deputy Sauckel.'
"Q: 'Did you have any trouble with Sauckel?'
"A: 'I was fundamentally opposed to the establishment of compulsory labor, and consented to promulgating the decree only after receiving orders.'
"Q: 'Then this decree was not issued on the initiative of Von Falkenhausen himself?'
"A: 'On the contrary.'
"Q: 'Who gave instruction in this matter?'
"A: 'I suppose that at that time Sauckel was already responsible for manpower and that at that time he gave me all instructions on Hitler's orders."'
I skip and take up the quotation again on Page 3 of the French translation, fourth paragraph:
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"Q: 'Since you were opposed to the idea of compulsory labor,
didn't you protest when you received these instructions?'
"A: 'There were unending quarrels between Sauckel and myself. In the end this contributed greatly to my resignation."'
The violence of the pressure exerted by the Defendant Sauckel in Belgium in order to impose his plan of recruitment by force is also demonstrated by the document which I have just submitted to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RP-67 (Document Number 556(43)-PS). The Tribunal will remember that it is the report addressed on 13 August 1943 by Sauckel to Hitler on his return from France, Belgium, and Holland.
Finally, I have to deal with the introduction of compulsory labor in the Netherlands. I request the Tribunal to charge the Defendant Seyss-Inquart as well as the Defendant Sauckel with the institution of compulsory enrollment in the occupied Dutch territories.
As a matter of fact, the deportation of the Dutch workers was organized by ordinances of the Reich Commissioner. They established all the more the responsibility of the defendant, who in his quality as Reich Commissioner, derived his powers directly from the Fuehrer.
The Defendant Seyss-Inquart introduced the compulsory labor service in the Netherlands by an ordinance of 28 February 1941, published in the Dutch Verordnungsblatt of 1941, Number 42. 1 have referred to this ordinance as Document Number RF-58 in the course of my explanation and asked the Tribunal to take judicial notice of it.
As in Belgium the compulsory labor service could originally be enforced in the interior of the occupied territories only; but just as in Belgium, it was soon extended in order to permit the deportation of workers to Germany. The extension was put into realization by an ordinance of Seyss-Inquart of 23 March 1942, which appeared in Number 26 of the Verordnungsblatt, 1942. 1 submit it to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-74, and I ask the Tribunal to add it to the Record.
The Defendant Seyss-Inquart has thus paved the way on which the Defendant Sauckel was to be enabled to proceed to action. Sauckel actually utilized all the human potential of the Netherlands. New measures were soon necessary-measures which Seyss- Inquart adopted.
An ordinance dated 6 May 1943, Verordnungsblatt, 1943, Page 173, ordered the mobilization of all men from 18 to 35 years of age. I submit this decree to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-75.
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Moreover, as soon as 19 February 1943 Seyss--Inquart had issued a regulation which permitted his services to take all measures in the utilization of labor which they considered to be opportune.
This ordinance, which appeared in the Verordnungsblatt of 1943, is submitted to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-76.
The extent of deportation from Holland in 1943 is attested to by a letter of 16 June 1943 from Sauckel's representative in the Netherlands. This letter, which bears French Document Number F-664, is submitted to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-77. I quote:
"In conformity with the census decree of 7 May 1943, the 1920 to 1924 classes have been registered on filing cards. Although this involved very much work it was nevertheless possible to send 22,986 workers to the Reich, and in addition the prisoners of war put at our disposal. During the month of June the deficiency of the month of May will be made up.
"These classes include, according to the Statistical Service of the Kingdom of Holland, 80,000 each. It is from these classes that transfers to the Reich have been made so far. Up to 1 June 1943, 446,493 persons have been transferred to the Reich and a number of them have returned from there: The figures as per index are as follows: 1921 class, 43,331; 1922 class, 45,354; 1923 class, 47,593; 1924 class, 45,232.
"As up to 80 percent have been deferred, it is now imperative to begin transporting entire classes to the Reich. The Reich Commissioner has given his agreement to this action. The other authorities involved-of economy, armament, agriculture, and the Armed Forces-pressed by necessity, have given their approval."
At the end of the year 1944, the German authorities increased their pressure on the Netherlands. During that period tens of thousands of persons were arrested within 2 days in Rotterdam. Systematic raids took place in all the larger cities of Holland, sometimes improvised, sometimes after the population had been publicly summoned to appear in designated places. I submit to the Tribunal various proclamations of this kind. They form Document 1162-PS and have already been submitted to the Tribunal by Mr. Dodd. I shall not read them again. I use them in support of my argument and submit them as Exhibit Number RF-78.
These documents do not reveal isolated facts; they show a systematic policy which the defendants were to pursue up to 5 May 1945, when the capitulation of Germany brought liberation to the Netherlands.
I still owe the Tribunal a supplementary explanation. The defendants did not stop at introducing compulsory labor service
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in the occupied territories. I have said that they proceeded to criminal coercion in order to ensure that the mobilization of foreign workers was carried out. I am going to prove this fact.
,,The measures taken by the National Socialist authorities to guarantee the forced enlistment of foreign workers cannot be disassociated from the procedures they applied to ensure the so-called voluntary enlistment. The pressure was more violent, but it sprang from the same spirit. The method was to deceive, and where this proved unsuccessful to use coercion. The defendants very soon realized that no kind of propaganda would lend the cloak of justice to compulsory labor in the eyes of their victims. If they had any doubts in this respect, these would have been dissipated by the reports of the occupation authorities. The latter were unanimous in their reports of the political trouble provoked by this compulsory enlistment and of the resistance encountered by it. That is why the defendants once again used force in their attempt to ensure that the civilian mobilization decreed by them was carried out.
First in line among the coercive measures to which the Germans took recourse, I mention the withholding of the ration cards of the recalcitrants. The Tribunal knows from the circular letter of Dr. Mansfeld, submitted as Exhibit Number RF-26 (Document 1183- PS), that this measure had been proposed ever since January 1942, and will recall that by decree of the Fuehrer. of 8 September 1942, which I submitted as Exhibit Number RF-55 (Document 556(2)-PS), this measure was put into effect. This order provided that food and clothing ration cards were not to be issued to persons incapable of proving that they were working, nor to those who refused to do compulsory work.
Hitler's order was put into effect in all occupied territories. In France circulars imposing decrees by the occupation authorities prohibited the renewal of ration cards of those French people who had eluded the census of 16 February 1943. In Belgium the forfeiture of ration certificates was regulated by an order of the military commander. It is the order of 5 March 1943, published in the Verordnungsblatt for Belgium, which 1 submit to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-79.
General Von Falkenhausen, the signatory of this order, admitted its grave significance during the interrogation, which I have submitted to the Tribunal under Document Number RF-15 and to which I refer again. General Von Falkenhausen declared that the Defendant Sauckel was the originator of this order and that he had refused to grant an amnesty proposed by his services. I quote, Page 4 of the French translation, fifth paragraph:
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"Q: 'Does the witness remember an order of 5 March 1943, by
which those refusing to enter the compulsory labor service had their ration cards withdrawn?'
"A: 'I do not remember. At the time when the order was issued for men from 18 to 50 years old the implementing orders were not given by myself but by my offices, and I am not conversant with the details of the application of reprisals. I was not the executive head of the administration. I was above it!
"Q: 'But at that time you were -informed of the means of pressure and manner of treatment which the authorities thought fit to employ?'
"A: 'I do not wish to deny my responsibility for all that happened. After all, I was aware of many things. I remember in particular the order regarding ration cards, because on various occasions I proposed that an amnesty be declared for persons who were obliged to live illegally and who did not have a ration card!
"Q: 'To whom was this proposal made?'
"A: 'To Sauckel, with the consent of President Revert!
"Q: 'What was the attitude taken by Sauckel at that time?'
"A: 'He refused to grant such an amnesty!"
In Holland, likewise, the renewal of ration certificates which did mot bear the stamp of the labor office was prohibited.
The defendants, however, used a method of coercion even more ,criminal than the forfeiture of ration cards. I refer to the persecution directed against the families of those who refused to do compulsory labor. I call this method criminal, because it is based on the concept of family responsibility which is contrary to the fundamental principles of the penal law of civilized nations. It was, nevertheless, .sanctioned by several legislative texts issued or imposed by the National Socialists.
In France, I quote the law of 11 June 1943, which I submit to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-80 with the request that it take judicial notice thereof.
In Belgium, I refer to the order of the military commander of 30 April 1943, which appeared in the Verordnungsblatt for Belgium ,of 6 May 1943, and particularly to Paragraphs 8 and 9. 1 submit this order to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-81, with the request that it take judicial notice thereof.
Judicial action by the defendants was likewise directed against the employers and against the officials of the employment bureaus. In France the action was initiated by two laws of 1 February 1944.
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I emphasize that these laws were issued on the same day as the compulsory labor law, and I affirm that they were imposed at the same time. In support of my statement, I submit the admission of the Defendant Sauckel, in his letter of 25 January 1944, which I read a while ago to the Tribunal under Exhibit Number RF-70 (Document 556(55)-PS). I submit to the Tribunal the laws of I February 1944 as Document Number RP-82 with the request that it be added to the Record.
There were still other measures of coercion. One of these, for instance, was the closing of the faculties and schools to defaulting students. It was decreed in Belgium on 28 June 1943; in France, on 15 July 1943. In Holland the students were victims of a systematic deportation in February and Mardi 1943. 1 quote in this connection a letter of 4 May 1943, which brings proof of the action carried out through Holland towards a systematic deportation. This is Document F-665, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-83 of my book.
THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps this is a good time to break off.
[A recess was taken.]
M. HERZOG: Mr. President, Your Honors, at the suspension of the session I was about to read to the Tribunal the letter of 4 May 1943, which gives evidence of the action taken in Holland towards; a systematic deportation of the students. I quote:
"Subject: Action against students.
"The action will start on Thursday morning. As it is now too late to have this published in the press today, an announcement by the Higher SS and Police Leader will be made over the radio beginning tomorrow at 7 o'clock; it will be published tomorrow in the morning and the evening papers. Besides that, we will follow the directives given in yesterday's telegram."
Following is the text of the proclamation:
"Ordinance on the registration of students."
I will skip the first paragraph and I quote:
"1. All persons of the male sex who have attended a Dutch university or academy during the years 1942-43 and have not yet finished their studies according to the curriculum-referred to below as 'students'-are to report between 1000 and 1500 on 6 May 1943 to the commander of the sector of the SS and the Security Police competent for their respective residence for the purpose of their induction into the compulsory labor service."
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I now skip Paragraphs 2 and 3 and quote:
"4. (1) Persons violating this ordinance or trying to circumvent it, particularly such persons who do not comply with their duty to register or either intentionally or through negligence state any false data will be punished by imprisonment and/or unlimited fine, unless other laws providing a more severe penalty are applicable....
"(4) Those exercising paternal authority or guardianship over the students are co-responsible for their reporting as prescribed. They are subjected to the same penalties as- the offenders themselves.
"5. This ordinance becomes effective on promulgation." Signed ---- "The Higher SS and Police Leader with the Reich Commissioner for the Occupied Dutch Territories."
Since no measures whatsoever succeeded in intimidating the workers in the occupied territories, the defendants finally resorted to their police forces to ensure the arrest of those workers destined for deportation to Germany. This intervention by the police had been demanded by the Defendant Sauckel.
I submit two documents in evidence. The first consisted of the minutes of a conference which took place on 4 January 1944 at the headquarters of the Fuehrer. I have just submitted this document to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-68 (Document 1292-PS). I quote, French translation, Page 2, last paragraph; German original, middle of Page 4:
"The Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor (GBA) Sauckel, declared that he would try with fanatical determination to obtain this manpower. Up to now he had always kept his promises regarding the number of workers to be provided; with the best will in the world, however, he was not in a position to make a definite promise for 1944. He would do anything possible to provide the manpower required for 1944. The success would depend mainly on the number of German police put at his disposal. If he had to rely on the indigenous police his project could not be carried out." I refer now to the statements made by Sauckel at the conference of the central office for the Four Year Plan on I March 1944. It is Exhibit Number RF-30 (Document R-124), to which I. repeatedly have called the attention of the Tribunal. The passage which I am about to quote has not yet been referred to before the Tribunal Page 3 of the French translation, German text, from Page 1775 on "The term 'S-factory"'-S-Betrieb-"in France is actually nothing else but a protection against Sauckel's grasp. That is how the French look at it, and they certainly cannot be
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expected to think differently. They are Frenchmen in the first place, who are faced with a German point of view and German actions. different from theirs. It is not up to me to decide whether the protected factories (Schutzbetriebe) are useful and necessary. I have described the situation only from my point of view. Nevertheless, I still hope to succeed eventually by using my old organization of agents on the one hand and, on the other hand, by those measures which I have fortunately been able to wrest from the French Government.
"In the course of negotiations lasting 5 to 6 hours I wrested from M. Laval the concession that the death sentence may be imposed on officials who sabotage the recruitment of labor and other measures. Believe me, it was very difficult. I had to fight hard to succeed, but I did succeed. And I am requesting, especially of the Armed Forces that, in case the French Government does not really put its mind to it, most drastic action be taken now by the Germans in France. Please do not resent my following remark: Several times, when in company of my assistants, I have faced situations in France which caused me to ask, 'Is there no respect in France for the German lieutenant and his 10 men?' For months on end everything I said was paralyzed by the reply, 'What do you want, Mr. Gauleiter? Don't you know that we have no police forces at our disposal? We are powerless in France.'
"This was the reply given over and over again. How, in the face of these facts, am I to achieve labor recruitment in France? The German authorities must cooperate; and if the French, despite all their promises, do not remedy the situation, we Germans must make an example of one case and, on the provisions of this law, put some prefect or mayor against the wall if he does not cooperate, else not a single Frenchman will go to Germany."
By such means the deportation of workers to Germany finally was achieved, by arresting them, and by the threat of reprisals. It was a logical consequence of the National Socialist system that the policy of recruiting foreign workers was accomplished by police terror.
I have told the Tribunal that the resistance offered by the prisoners of war and by the workers of the occupied territories against the activities of the defendants, which were in turn insidious and brutal, wrecked the plan for the recruitment of foreign workers. The Defendant Sauckel encountered the greatest difficulty in carrying out the programs which he had persuaded Hitler and the Defendants Goering, Speer, and Funk to accept.
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From this it does not follow that Nazi Germany did not succeed in carrying out mass deportations of foreign workers. The number of native workers from the occupied territories of Western Europe who were deported into Germany is very high. More numerous still were those workers compelled to work at home in factories and workyards under the control of the occupation authorities.
I shall give the Tribunal statistical information which will enable it to verify my statements. These statistics are fragmentary. They are excerpts from reports compiled by the governments of the occupied countries after their liberation and from reports sent during the war by the Arbeitseinsatz office to its superiors.
The statistics of Allied origin are incomplete. The records on which they are based have been partially destroyed. On the other hand, the administrations of the occupied territories are in possession of second-hand information only whenever the requisitions of workers were made directly by the occupation authorities. As to the German statistics, they are also incomplete since the Allied authorities have not yet discovered all the records of the enemy.
It is, however, possible to give to the Tribunal an exact evaluation of the extent of the deportations effected by Germany. This evaluation will furnish proof that the violations of international law committed by the defendants did not remain in the tentative stage characterized by a beginning only-though reprehensible as such; they brought about social disorder such as, under penal law, constitutes the perpetration of the crime.
I shall first submit to the Tribunal the statistics furnished by the official reports of the French Government. The French Government's report has been published by the Institute of Market Analysis. It contains numerous statistical tables from which I quote the total figures. The figures are as follows: 738,000 workers were pressed into compulsory labor service in France; 875,952 French workers were deported to German factories; 987,687 prisoners of war were utilized for the Reich war economy. A total of 2,601,639 workers of French citizenship thus were pressed into work serving the war effort of National Socialist Germany.
From the official report of the Belgian Government it appears that 150,000 persons were pressed into compulsory labor; and the report of the Dutch Government gives a figure of 431,400 persons; but it should be noted that this figure does not take into account the systematic raids undertaken during November 1944, nor the deportations carried out in 1945.
I am submitting to the Tribunal exact figures which cover all the stages of the policy of recruiting foreign labor. These figures are taken from the reports of the Defendant Sauckel himself or of
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various administrative offices concerned with the deportation of labor. The extent of labor utilized in the occupied territories is demonstrated by the statistics concerning workers who were used in constructing fortifications of the so-called Atlantic Wall as part of the Organization Todt, which I recall was directed by the Defendant Speer after the death of its founder. These statistics are to be found in a teletype message sent to Hitler by the Defendant Sauckel on 17 May 1943. It is Document 556(33)-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-84. I quote:
"The Delegate for the Four Year Plan. The Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor, Berlin, to the Fuehrer. headquarters of the Fuehrer.
"My Fuehrer: I beg to submit to you the following figures on the manpower employed in the Todt Organization:
"In addition to the manpower assigned to the entire German industry by the Allocation of Labor since I took office, fresh workers have also been constantly supplied to the Todt Organization. The total figure of the workers employed by the Todt Organization was as follows: End of March 1942, 270,969; end of March 1943, 696,003.
"It should be noted that the Allocation of Labor has with great speed and energy assigned workers preferably to the Todt Organization in the West for the purpose of completing the work on the Atlantic Wall. This is all the more remarkable because in France, Belgium, and Holland...."
I skip a few lines and quote from Page 2:
"Despite the difficulties involved, the manpower strength of the Todt Organization in the West was increased from 66,701 workers at the end of March 1942 to 248,200 workers at the end of March 1943."
The number of foreign workers deported to Germany by 30 September 1941 is furnished by a report which was found in the archives of the OKW. It is Document 1323-PS, which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-85. According to this document, 1,228,686 foreign workers were-employed in Germany on 30 September 1941. Of that number 483,842 came from the occupied Western territories. I quote from this document the number of labor deportees by country of origin. I shall confine myself to the columns of interest to the Western states, since the statistics of workers deported from the East, of Europe come within the province of my Soviet colleagues:
"Denmark, 63,309; Holland, 134,093; Belgium, 212,903; France, 721,475; Italy, 238,557."
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Finally, on 7 July 1944, Sauckel, in one of his last reports, informed the National Socialist Government of the results of his campaign during the first half of 1944. 1 quote the document, which bears the Number 208-PS and which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-86. I read from the second page:
"C. The foreigners came from .... France except the north, 33,000; Belgium, including the north of France, 16,000; Netherlands, 15,000; Italy, 37,000."
This is the fresh manpower put at the disposal of German industry during the period of 1 January to 30 June 1944.
I have furnished the proof I owed to the Tribunal. The Tribunal will, moreover, remember Sauckel's admission at the 58th conference of the Four Year Plan, which I have read to you previously. Sauckel admitted that there were 5 million foreign workers in Germany, of whom 200,000 were actually volunteers.
The materiality of the crime exposed is at the same time established by the circumstances of its perpetration and by the multitude of the victims affected. To prove the gravity of its effect, I have but to recall the treatment to which foreign workers were subjected in Germany.
German propaganda always claimed that foreign workers deported to Germany were treated on equal basis with German* workers: the same living conditions, the same labor contracts, and the same discipline. This contention, as such, is not conclusive. My American colleagues have furnished proof of the blows which the National Socialist conspirators have dealt to the dignity and decency of the life of the German worker. The reality is worse yet. Foreign workers did not enjoy the treatment in Germany to which they were entitled as human beings. I affirm this and I will prove it to the Tribunal.
But before going into that I wish to call the Tribunal's attention to the significance of the new crime which I am denouncing. It does not only make the crime of deportation complete but provides its true meaning also. I said that the policy of the defendants in the occupied territories could be summed up as follows:
Utilization of the productive forces and extermination of the unproductive forces. This is the principle representing one of the favorite concepts of National Socialism, on the basis of which the treatment inflicted on foreign workers by the defendants should be judged. The Germans have exploited the human potential of the occupied countries to the extreme limit of the strength of the individuals concerned. They showed some consideration for foreign workers only insofar as they wished to increase their output. But
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as soon as their capacity for work decreased, the foreign workers shared the common lot of deportees.
I shall prove my argument by expounding to the Tribunal the working and living conditions and rules of discipline which were imposed on foreign workers deported to Germany.
I request the Tribunal to charge the Defendant Sauckel with the facts I am going to d
enounce. He was put in charge of the working conditions for foreign workers, following an agreement to which he freely consented. The text of this agreement, made with Ley, the Chief of the German Labor Front, on 2 June 1943, was published in the Reichsarbeitsblatt, 1943, Part I, Page 558. 1 submitted this to the Tribunal at the beginning of my presentation as Exhibit Number RF-18.
This agreement shows that the treatment of foreign workers was subject to control by the inspection department of the Allocation of Labor (Arbeitseinsatz). The Defendant Sauckel could therefore not ignore the mistreatment to which foreigners were subjected. If not prescribed it was tolerated by him.
The working conditions of workers deported to Germany provided the first evidence of the determination of the defendants to exploit the human potential of the occupied territories to the extreme limit of its strength.
First I call the attention of the Tribunal to the working hours imposed on foreign workers. The working hours were legally set at 54 hours per week by Sauckel's decree of 22 August 1942. Actually, most foreign workers were subjected to still longer working hours. Rush work, which necessitated overtime, was mostly assigned to foreigners. It was not unusual for the latter to be forced to work 11 hours a day, that is, 66 hours a week, provided they had one day off per week.
For this purpose I quote the report of the Minister for Prisoners, Deportees, and Refugees, Document UK-78(3), which I submit as Exhibit Number RF-87. I quote Paragraph 2:
"Working Hours: The average number of working hours was 11 and sometimes 13 a day in certain factories, for example, Maschinenfabrik, Berlin (31). In Berlin-Spandau, the Alkett factory imposed 101/4 hours work on day shift and 12 hours on night shift. At Konigsberg the caterpillar-tread factory, Krupp, imposed 12 hours a day."
The work of foreign workers was remunerated by wages identical with those of the German workers.
I call the attention of the Tribunal to the illusory character of this equality. The policy of freezing wages was a permanent element of the wage and price policy pursued by the National
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Socialist Government; consequently, the wages of the workers employed in Germany remained limited. They were, moreover, heavily burdened with impositions and taxes. Finally and above all, they were encroached upon by fines which the German employers had the right to impose upon their workers. These fines could reach the amount of the weekly wage for slight breaches of discipline.
I submit in evidence Document D-182. These are two drafts of speeches to foreign civilian workers. One of them is intended for Russian and Polish workers. I leave this to be dealt with by my Soviet colleagues. I submit the other to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-88, and I quote:
"Draft of an address to foreign civilian workers, 'Maintenance of Labor Discipline,' January 1944.
"I must inform you of the following:
"The increasing lack of punctuality and absenteeism have caused the competent authorities to issue stricter regulations to ensure labor discipline whereby the competence of the employers to impose penalties has been extended. Violations of labor discipline, such as repeated tardiness, being absent without cause or excuse, leaving a job without authorization, will in the future be punished by fines up to the average daily wage. In more serious cases, for example, for repeated absences without cause or excuse, or insubordination, fines up to the average weekly salary will be imposed. In such cases, moreover, the additional ration cards may be taken away for a period up to 4 weeks...."
The precariousness of wages which, after these various cuts, were actually received by the foreign workers did not allow them to raise their standard of living in the places to which they had been deported. I maintain that this standard was insufficient and that the attitude of the Arbeitseinsatz in this matter constitutes a characteristic violation of the elementary principles of the rights of man. I will confirm this by submitting to the Tribunal proof of the inadequacy of food, lodging, and medical care to which the foreign workers were entitled.
The German propaganda services issued, in France, illustrated pamphlets in which the accommodations for foreign workers were represented as being comfortable. It was quite different in reality.
I will not dwell on this point. Mr. Dodd, my American colleague, has already submitted and commented upon Document D-288, an affidavit by Dr. Jager, chief medical officer in charge of the work camps in the Krupp factories. I will not reread this document to the Tribunal, but I would like to repeat that in this
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document Dr. Jager stated that French workers-prisoners of war working in the Krupp factories-had been billeted for more than half a year in kennels, urinals, unused ovens. The kennels were 3 feet high, 9 feet long, and 6 feet wide, and the men had to sleep there five in a kennel. I submit this document, which is to support my argument, as Exhibit Number RF-89.
To this unsanitary accommodation often inadequate food was added. In this respect I wish to explain the following to the Tribunal:
I do not, claim that the foreign workers deported to Germany were systematically exposed to starvation, but I do maintain that the leading principle of National Socialism finds its expression in the food regulations for foreign workers. They were decently fed only insofar as the Allocation of Labor wished to maintain or to increase their capacity for work. They were put on a starvation diet the moment when, for any reason whatsoever, their industrial output diminished. They then entered that category of unproductive forces, which National Socialism sought to destroy.
On 10 September 1942 the Defendant Sauckel declared to the First Congress of the Labor Administration of Greater Germany:
"Food and remuneration of foreign workers should be in proportion to their output and their good will."
He developed this point of view in documents which I am offering in evidence to the Tribunal.
I refer, in the first place, to the letter from Sauckel to Rosenberg, which is Document 016-PS and which I shall not read since it has already been read to the Tribunal by my American colleagues. I wish, however, to draw the Tribunal's attention to the second paragraph, Page 20, of this document, which concerns the food supply of prisoners of war and foreign workers:
"All these people must be fed, lodged, and treated in such a way that they may be exploited to the maximum with a minimum of expense."
I ask the Tribunal to remember this formula-the aim to exploit the foreign labor to the maximum at a minimum of expense. It is the same concept which I find in a letter of Sauckel of 14 March 1943 addressed to all Gauleiter. It is Document 633-PS, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-90:
"Subject: Treatment and care of foreign labor.
"Not only our honor and prestige and, still more than that, our National Socialist ideology which is opposed to the methods of plutocrats and Bolshevists, but also cool common sense in the first place demand proper treatment of foreign labor, including even Soviet-Russians. Slaves who are
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underfed, diseased, resentful, despairing, and filled with hate, will never yield that maximum of output which they might achieve under normal conditions."
I skip now to the next to the last paragraph:
"But since we will need foreign labor for many years and the possibility of replacing them is very limited I cannot exploit them on a short-term policy nor can I allow wasting of their working capacity."
The criminal concept revealed by these documents-is particularly manifest in the establishment of the food sanctions which were inflicted on the deported workers. I refer to Document D-182, which I have just submitted as Exhibit Number RF-88, and I remind the Tribunal that it provides the possibility of inflicting on recalcitrant workers the penalty of a partial suppression of 'food rations. Moreover, the foreign workers, who were all the more exposed to diseases and epidemics since they were poorly lodged and fed, did not enjoy proper medical care.
I submit in evidence a report made on 15 June 1944 by Dr. Fevrier, head of the health service of the French Delegation with the German Labor Front. It is Document F-536. I submit it as Exhibit Number RF-91, and I quote from the last paragraph at Page 15 of the French original, Page 13 of the German translation:
"At Auschwitz, in a very fine camp of 2,000 workers, we find tubercular people who were recognized as such by the local German doctor of the Arbeitsamt going about freely; but this doctor neglects to repatriate them out of hostile indifference. I am now taking steps to obtain their repatriation.
"In Berlin, in a clean hospital, well lighted and ventilated, where the chief doctor, a German, makes the rounds only once in 3 weeks, and a female Russian doctor every morning distributes uniformly the same calming drops to every patient, I have seen a dozen consumptives, three of them released prisoners. All of them except one have gone beyond the extreme limit at which treatment might still have had some chance of proving effective."
No statistics have been made of foreign workers who died during their deportation. Professor Henri Dessaille, Medical Inspector General of the Labor Ministry, estimates that 25,000 French workers died in Germany during their deportation. But not all of them died of diseases. To slow extermination was added swift extermination in concentration camps.
The disciplinary regime over the foreign workers was, in fact, of a severity contrary to the rights of man. I have already given
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some example of penalties to which the deported workers were exposed. There were still more. The workers who were deemed recalcitrant by their supervisors were sent to special reprisal camps, the 'Straflager'; some disappeared in political concentration camps.
I remind the Tribunal that I have already, indirectly, proved this fact. In the course of my presentation I submitted under Exhibit Number RF-44, the ordinance of Sauckel of 29 March 1943 which extends the term of the labor contracts by the length of time which the workers spent in prison or in internment camps.
I will not dwell on this point. Mr. Dodd, my American colleague, has submitted to the Tribunal the documents which prove the shipment of labor deportees to concentration camps. For the* rest, I take the liberty of referring the Tribunal to the presentation which M. Dubost will deliver to the Tribunal within a few days.
I emphasize, however, the significance of this persecution of foreign workers. It constitutes the completion of the crime of their deportation and the proof of the coherence of the German policy of extermination.
I have already reported to the Tribunal the events which marked the civilian mobilization of foreign workers for the service of National Socialist Germany. I have shown how the device of compulsory labor was inserted into the general framework of the policy of German domination. I have denounced the methods employed by the defendants to enforce the recruitment of foreign labor. I have emphasized -the importance of the deportations undertaken by the Arbeitseinsatz, and I have recalled how the deported workers were treated and ill-treated.
The policy of compulsory labor includes all the infractions under the jurisdiction of the Tribunal: Violation of international conventions, violation of the rights of man, and crimes against common law.
All the defendants bear functional responsibility for these infractions. It was the Reich Cabinet which set up the principles of the policy of enforced recruitment; the High Command of the German Armed Forces carried them out in the workshops of the Wehrmacht, the Navy, and the Air Force; the civilian administrations made use of it to support the German war economy.
I retain more particularly the guilt of certain of the defendants: Goering, Plenipotentiary for the Four Year Plan, coordinated the planning and the execution of the plans for the recruitment of foreign workers. Keitel, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, counter-signatory of Hitler's decrees, integrated compulsory labor with his manpower policy. Funk, Reich Minister of Economics, and Speer, Minister for Armament and War Production, based their
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program of war production on compulsory labor. Sauckel, finally, Plenipotentiary General for Allocation of Labor, proved to be the resolute and fanatical agent-to use his own words-of the policy of compulsory enrollment which, in Holland, was promoted and carried out by Seyss-Inquart.
The Tribunal will appreciate their respective responsibility. I request the Tribunal to condemn the crime of mobilization of foreign workers. I ask the Tribunal to restore the dignity of human labor which the defendants have attempted to degrade.
M. CHARLES GERTHOFFER (Assistant Prosecutor for the French Republic): Mr. President, Your Honors, the French Prosecution is in charge of the part of the Indictment concerning the deeds charged to the defendants which were perpetrated in the countries of Western Europe, as provided for by Article VI of the Charter of 8 August 1945 This text provides for violations of the
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Duchy of Luxembourg. I shall have the honor of presenting to you the part relating to France, and also the conclusion. Finally, a special statement, will be devoted to the works of art.
In the course of the presentation, we shall submit a certain number of documents. We shall quote only the passages which seem to us the most important, when the same document relates to several different questions; we shall quote those excerpts concerning each question when it is presented, indicating each time the reference in the document book, since it is impossible to make known to you all the excerpts at the same time because of the complexity of facts.
In his speeches and in his writings, Hitler never concealed the economic aims of the aggression of which Germany was to become guilty. The theories of race and living space increased the envy of the Germans at the same time as they stimulated their bellicose instincts.
After having conquered Austria and Czechoslovakia without bloodshed, they turned against Poland and prepared to attack the countries of Western Europe, where they hoped to find what was lacking to assure their domination.
This fact is revealed in particular by Document EC-606, discovered by the United States Army, which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number RF-92. This is the minutes of a conference held by the Defendant Goering, on 30 January 1940, with Lieutenant Colonel Conrath and Director Lange of the machine-constructing group attending. The following is the principal passage of the minutes:
"Field Marshal Goering, told me at the beginning that he had to inform me of the intentions of the Fuehrer and of the economic measures resulting therefrom.
"He stated: The Fuehrer is firmly convinced that he shall succeed in bringing about a decisive conclusion of the war in 1940 by making a great attack in the West. He assumes that Belgium, Holland, and northern France will fall into our possession; he, the Fuehrer forms his opinion on the calculation that the industrial areas of Douai and Lens, of Luxembourg, of Longwy and Briey might, as far as raw materials are concerned, replace the deliveries from Sweden.
"Therefore, the Fuehrer has decided, in disregard for the future, to stake fully our reserves of raw materials, at the expense of possible later years of war. The soundness of this resolution is supported with the Fuehrer by the view that the best stocks are not storks of raw materials but stocks of finished war materials. Moreover, when the aerial war
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begins, it must be taken into account that our finishing factories may be destroyed. The Fuehrer is furthermore of the opinion that the maximum output must be achieved in 1940 and consequently that long-range production programs should be put aside in order to accelerate those which can be terminated in 1940."
When the invasion began the countries of Western Europe were glutted with products of every kind; but after 4 years of methodical looting and enslavement of production, these countries are ruined, and their entire population is physically weakened as the result of rigorous restrictions.
To achieve such results, the Germans used every method, particularly violence, trickery, and blackmail.
The purpose of the present statement will be to specify the main spoliations ordered by the German leaders in the countries of Western Europe and to show that they constitute, as far as they are concerned, War Crimes which come under the jurisdiction of the International Military Tribunal for major war criminals.
It is not possible to draw an exact balance sheet of the German looting and of the profit derived by them as the result of the enslavement of production in the occupied countries. On one hand, we do not have enough time; on the other hand, we find ourselves faced with actual impotence resulting from the secret nature of certain operations and the destruction of archives through acts of war or deliberate destruction at the time of the German rout.
Nevertheless, the documents now collected and the information gathered make it possible to give a minimum estimate of the extent of spoliation. However, I shall ask the Tribunal's permission to make three preliminary remarks:
1) The numerous acts of individual looting committed by the Germans will not be referred to by this presentation since they come under the competence of a different jurisdiction.
2) We shall only mention for the Record the incalculable, economic results of German atrocities, for instance, the financial loss experienced by the immediate relatives of breadwinners murdered, or the loss suffered by certain victims of ill-treatment, who are totally or partially, temporarily or permanently, incapacitated for work, or the damage resulting from the destruction of localities or buildings for the purpose of vengeance or intimidation.
3) Finally, gentlemen, we shall not discuss the damage resulting from purely military operations, which cannot be considered as economic results of War Crimes. When damage caused by military operations is referred to, some separate valuation will be necessary.
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With the permission of the Tribunal, I shall make a few general remarks on the economic looting of Western European occupied territories. Economic looting is to be understood as the removal of wealth of every kind, as well as the enslavement of the production of the various occupied countries.
To reach such results in countries which were generally highly industrialized and where numerous stocks of manufactured goods and abundant reserves of agricultural products existed, the German venture was faced with real difficulties.
At first, although the Germans had used this procedure to its maximum extent, requisitions were not adequate. In fact, they had to find the opportunities for ferreting out all sorts of things, which were sometimes hidden by the inhabitants, and on the other hand, they had to maintain for their own profit the economic activity of these countries.
The simplest way of becoming masters of the distribution of existing products and of production was to take possession of almost all means of payment and, if necessary, to Impose by force their distribution in exchange for products or services, at the same time combating the rise of prices.
Faced with starvation the populations were thus naturally forced to work directly or indirectly for the benefit of Germany.
The first part of this presentation will be divided into five chapters: 1) Seizure of currency by the Germans; 2) sequestering of the production of the occupied territories; 3) individual purchases, which should not be confused with individual acts of looting; 4) the black market, organized by and for the profit of Germany; 5) examination of the question of economic looting from the viewpoint of international law and in particular of the Hague Convention.
First chapter-seizure of currency by the Germans:
To have at their disposal all means of payment, the Germans used almost the same methods in the various occupied countries. First, they took two principal measures. One was the issue of paper money, by ordinance of 9 May 1940, published on Page 69 of the Verordnungsblatt fur die besetzten franzosischen Gebiete, official German gazette, which will subsequently be referred to by its official abbreviation VOBIF, which I submit to the Tribunal as Document Number RF-93. This ordinance concerned Denmark and Norway; and on 19 May 1940 was rendered applicable to the occupied territories of Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, and France.
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The Germans proceeded to issue bank notes of the Reichskreditkasse which were legal tender only- in the respective occupied countries.
The Germans then took a second measure: The blocking of existing currency within the occupied countries as a result of the ordinance of 10 May 1940, published in VOBIF, Page 58, which I submit as Document Number RF-94. In regard to Holland these ordinances are those of 24 June, 14 August, 16 August, and 18 September 1940, which are submitted as Document Numbers RF-95, 96, 97, and 98. In regard to Belgium these ordinances are those of 17 June and 22 July 1940, submitted as Document Numbers RF-99 and 100.
These measures, notably the issuing of paper money, left exclusively to the whim of the Germans without any possible control on the part of the financial administrations of the occupied countries, were to serve, as we shall see, as powerful means of pressure to impose the payment of enormous war tributes under the pretext of maintaining occupation troops as well as alleged payment agreements known as "clearing," which functioned almost exclusively to the benefit of the occupying power.
The Germans thus procured for themselves, under false pretenses, means of payment from which they profited by realizing considerable sums for their sole benefit.
All agricultural and industrial products, raw materials, goods of every kind, or services, for which Germany apparently made regular payment by means of either notes of the Reichskreditkasse or by so-called clearing agreements or by war tributes known as indemnities for the maintenance of occupation troops, were exacted with full knowledge that no redemption would be forthcoming. Thus, we can be sure that, as a rule, such regulations were purely fictitious and were the most regularly used fraudulent procedure to effect the economic looting of the occupied countries of Western Europe.
These questions will be examined in a more exact mariner later on. I shall limit myself for -the moment to pointing out to the Tribunal that to effect the economic looting of the occupied countries with their own money, it was necessary that this money should preserve an appreciable purchasing power. Therefore, the efforts of the Germans were directed toward stabilization of prices. A severe regulation prohibiting rises in prices was subsequently promulgated by several decrees-VOBIF, Pages 8, 60, and 535, submitted as Document Number RF-101. Nevertheless, the application of such measures could not prevent economic laws from
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playing their part. The payment of excessive tributes, considering the resources of the invaded- countries, could not but have as their primary result a continuous rise of prices. The leaders of the Reich were perfectly aware of the situation and watched very attentively the rise in prices, which they were attempting to moderate.
This we know principally from the secret reports of Hemmen, President of the Armistice Commission for German Economic Questions, which we will discuss when we examine the particular case of France.
Chapter 2-Sequestering of the production of the occupied countries:
When the Germans invaded the countries of Western Europe great disorder was created as the result. The population fled before the advance of the enemy. Industries were at a standstill. German troops guarded the factories and prevented anyone from entering.
'I am not able to give you a list of the enterprises affected by this situation, since there was almost no exception.
Nevertheless, as an example, we win present to the Tribunal the original of one of the numerous posters exhibited in industrial plants in France. I submit this &poster as Document Number RF-102. It is dated Paris, 28 June 1940. One text is in German, and the other is in French. Here is the French text:
"By order of General Field Marshal Goering, of 28 June 1940, the Generalluftzeugmeister took possession of this factory as trustee. Only persons having special permits from the Generalluftzeugmeister, Verbindungsstelle, Paris, may enter."
Hardly had the factories been occupied by the military when German technicians, at the heel of the troops, proceeded methodically to remove the best machines.
It is revealed by a secret report of Colonel Hedler, dated December 1940 and emanating from the Economic Section of the OKW, Pages 77 and 78, that the removal of the best machines from the occupied territories was to be organized, in spite of the terms of Article 53 of the Hague Convention.
This document is submitted as Exhibit Number RF-103 (Document EC-84).
On the other hand, immediately after the invasion, the working population, their resources being exhausted, naturally gravitated around these factories in the hope of securing 'their means of subsistence. Problems of an identical nature arose in all the occupied countries: to stop the looting of machinery, which was taking place at an alarming rate; and to keep the workers employed.
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The Germans for their part forced the factories to resume work under the pretext of assuring subsistence to the population. The ordinance of 20 May 1940, published in the VOBIF, Page 31, which we submit as Document Number RF-104, applicable to the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France, orders that work should be resumed in all enterprises and industries of food supply and agriculture. The same text provided for the appointment of temporary administrators in case of absence of the directors or in other cases of emergency.
THE PRESIDENT: Are there any objections to breaking off?
[The Tribunal adjourned until 21 January 1946 at 1000 hours.]
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