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[The Defendant Raeder resumed the stand.]
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Dr. Horn wishes to ask some questions.
DR. MARTIN HORN (Counsel for Defendant Von Ribbentrop): With the permission of the Tribunal I should like to put a few more questions to the witness.
Admiral, is it true that on 24 April 1941 the so-called neutrality patrol of North American warships was extended past the 300-mile limit to a distance of at least 1,000 miles?
RAEDER: I cannot remember the date, but such an extension did take place at some time.
DR. HORN: Is it true that at the beginning of June 1941 a law was passed in the United States confiscating foreign ships immobilized in North American harbors as a result of the war and including 26 Italian and 2 German ships?
RAEDER: Here again I cannot tell you the date for certain. It happened in the summer of 1941. The ships were mostly Italian, with a few German ships. I cannot swear to the exact figures.
DR. HORN: In June 1941 the United States publicly declared its willingness to give the Soviet Union every possible aid. Did you discuss this with Hitler, and what was his attitude towards it?
RAEDER: Yes, that is correct. There were some questions of a loan without interest, or some such thing. Very probably I did speak to Hitler about it, but I cannot tell you what his attitude was. I can say only that all these measures at that time in no way deterred us from the course we had pursued until then. In June I had the conversation with Hitler at which I explained to him that up to that time we had allowed American warships to go completely unmolested, and that we would continue to do so in spite of the considerable disadvantages entailed which I mentioned recently.
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DR. HORN: In 1941 the American Secretary of War Mr. Stimson and the Secretary of the Navy Mr. Knox, as well as Secretary of State Mr. Hull, repeatedly advocated in public the use of the United States fleet to safeguard English transports of war material to Great Britain. On 12 July 1941, Secretary of the Navy Knox informed the representatives of the press of Roosevelt's order to shoot at German ships. How did Hitler and you react to these actions, which were contrary to neutrality?
RAEDER: Your facts are correct. They will go down in the annals of history. Hitler did subsequently issue an express order that we were in no circumstances to open fire of our own accord, but only in self-defense. This situation actually did arise later in the case of the two destroyers Greer and Kearny.
DR. HORN: Thank you. I have no further questions.
MARSHAL: Your Honor, the report is made that Defendant Goering is absent this morning.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Defendant, you had read at the time of its publication the book by Captain Schuessler, The Fight of the Navy against Versailles, had you not?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you look at it on Page 26 of Document Book 10, Page 123 of the German document book? Captain Schuessler had told you that he was going to write such a work, had he not?
RAEDER: Yes. And I might add that this book was written because we in the Navy had been accused by National Socialist circles of not having done enough to strengthen the Navy in the period previous to 1933. That is why all these things were mentioned in that book.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE And the book was circulated among senior officers in the Navy, was it not?
RAEDER: Yes; at any rate, any of the senior officers who wanted it could have it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, would you just turn to Page 127, or to Page 27 of the English book, which gives the preface? You will see at the end of the first paragraph it says that it is to give a reliable picture of the fight of the Navy against the unbearable regulations of the Peace Treaty of Versailles.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And in the third paragraph:
"This memorandum is also meant to distinguish more clearly the services of those men who, without being known to wide
20 May 46
circles, were ready to accept extraordinary responsibility in the service of the fight against the peace treaty."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Will you agree, Defendant, that that preface represents generally but accurately the feeling of the Navy with regard to invading the provisions of the Treaty of Versailles?
RAEDER: Yes, as regarding circumventing the Versailles Treaty as far as necessary to improve our defenseless position, for reasons which I explained recently here. To do this was a matter of honor for every man.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, just turn over-it is Page 28, My Lord, and it is Page 126 of your copy.
[Turning to the defendant.] It gives a summary of contents. You see, it is in four sections. The first section deals with the first
Defensive actions against the execution of the Treaty of Versailles, and then enumerates what they were. Don't trouble about that. The second is independent armament measures behind the back of the Reich Government and legislative bodies.
RAEDER: In both cases it says: From the end of the war until taking over the Ruhr in 1923; from 1923 until the Lohmann case in 1927. I had nothing to do with either case.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Just let us see. From 1922 to 1924 you were inspector of naval training at Kiel, were you not?
RAEDER: Inspector of the training system; the schools, the further training of officer candidates, the complete training of assistants of the Chief of Staff, that is, chief-of-staff assistants, a sort of general staff officer, and similar matters. I had nothing to do with affairs of the front.
THE PRESIDENT: That is what you were asked. You were asked whether you were inspector of training. The answer was "yes," was it not?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: As inspector of training, are you telling the Tribunal that you did not have a very complete knowledge of the weapons available for your service?
RAEDER: No, no. It was not a question of weapons visible for all to see. As I explained to you recently, that was a matter of setting up gun platforms and transferring guns from the North Sea to the Baltic. This was done by a special command, which worked under the direct order of the Chief of Navy; among others, there was this Kapitaenleutnant Raenkel, for instance, who was the specialist dealing with all gunnery questions at the time. I myself
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was in Kiel, and there were no guns or anything of the kind in Kiel and its neighborhood.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Take the next period from 1923 to 1927. From 1925 to 1928 you were Chef der Marine Station der Ostsee, were you not?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Are you telling the Tribunal that you did not know about the independent armament measures taken behind the back of the Reich Government?
RAEDER: No; I had nothing at all to do with these affairs. I have already said that was done by the Chief of the Naval Command Staff. I knew in a general way...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am not asking you whether you ever had to do with them, I am asking you whether you are saying that you did not know about them. You knew all about them, did you not?
RAEDER: I knew it in a general way, that such measures were being taken.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, take the next, Number III: "Planned armament works tolerated by the Reichskabinet, but behind the back of the legislative bodies." The legislative bodies would be the Reichstag and the Reichsrat, would they not?
RAEDER: Yes. But I already said recently that it was not the military commander-in-chief's business to negotiate these matters with the Reichstag This was a matter for the Government. Herr Severing will also testify to that.
SIR DAVIE) MAXWELL-FYFE: We will hear Herr Severing when he comes. At the moment I want you to tell the Tribunal this . . .
RAEDER: [Interposing.] I say the same...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Just wait a minute; you have not heard my question yet. What did you say to Captain Schuessler? Did you tell him you are giving an entirely false picture in suggesting that the Navy had anything to do with going behind the back of the Reichstag? Did you make any effort to correct what Captain Schuessler was saying?
RAEDER: No, I did not correct his book. I had no time for that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, just before we come to Number IV, if you just look, it's page-
My Lord, it is Page 32 of the English book, and Page 186 of your book. This is part of Captain Schuessler's description of Section II
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dealing with economic rearmament; it comes under the heading, "Difficult Working Conditions."
[Turning to the defendant.] Do you see that? It begins: "There were often difficult working conditions." Do you see that? The heading is "Difficult Working Conditions."
RAEDER: Yes I see, "Difficult Working Conditions."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, I want you to look at the last part of it. Now, I want it quite clear, Defendant. This is dealing with the period from 1923 to 1927, before you were head of the Navy; so I want to ask you about it.
"There were often many external difficulties besides these for the Tebeg-the camouflaging of the task and the work, the distance separating them, the impossibility of settling any questions even of minor importance by telephone, and the necessity of avoiding if possible any written correspondence, and of carrying it out in any case as private correspondence with false names and disguised expressions."
Did you not know that that was the method by which it was being carried on?
RAEDER: No; I really knew very little about the Tebeg-the Tebeg, the Davis-any of these things. But I think it was quite right for these people to work like that, because at that time the attitude of a large percentage of the German people was unreliable, and there was great danger if these things leaked out. In any case, the Tebeg had been dissolved when I arrived.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE Now, would you kindly turn back to Page 126, in Book 4, Page 28 of the English book, and just look at Captain Schuessler's description of the fourth period: "Armament under the direction of the Reich Government in camouflaged form (from 1933 to 1935 when we were free to recruit on an unrestricted basis.)"
Do you agree that Captain Schuessler was giving an accurate description of your methods from 1933 to 1935?
RAEDER: How does he describe it? Where is that passage?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: It is Number 4.
RAEDER: "Armament under the leadership of the Reich Government in camouflaged form"?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You agree that it is a correct description of your activities from 1933 to 1935?
RAEDER: Of course. I did that on orders from the head of the State; and before all the head of the State was very anxious to see that no exaggerated measures should be taken, so that it would
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not interfere in any way with his plans for making an agreement with Great Britain. He allowed very little to be done with regard to the Navy. He could at once have built eight armored ships, so many destroyers, and so many torpedo boats, none of which had yet been built, but he did none of these things because he said, "We do not want to create the impression that we are arming on a large scale." He approved only two...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You have explained that; so note, Defendant, the point is this-the "camouflaged form" when you were negotiating the naval agreement. You did not want anyone to know what steps you had taken contrary to the treaty and how far you had gone. That is the plain fact of it-you wanted to get the naval agreement without disclosing what you had done isn't that so?
RAEDER: No, that distorts the sense of what I said. We did not want the announcement of these measures to cause strained relations between Germany and Britain. The measures as such were completely justifiable and were extremely minor.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I will come to that in a moment. I only do want, before we leave these naval works, to ask you one question about another book. You know that Oberst Scherff projected a history of the German Navy. I don't want any misunderstanding about it. As I understand the position, you permitted Oberst Scherff to have recourse to the archives of the Navy but beyond that you hadn't seen anything of his work, isn't that right?
RAEDER: I did not see his book at all. I saw the table of contents here the first time I was interrogated. I did not give him the order, either; he received it from the Fuehrer; and for that reason I allowed the Chief of the Navy Archives to assist him.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, that is exactly what I put to you. I want you to turn to Book 10a. It starts at Page 1 in the English version and also Page 1 in the German. And if you would look at Page 3 you will find the proposed table of contents of Oberst Scherff's book, Page 3 in the English version. I think it must be about Page 3 in the German version, too. Now would you look at the heading of Section 2. It is: "Incorporation of the Navy in the National Socialist State." And then he describes, "(a) National Socialism in the Navy before 1933"...
RAEDER: Where is that? I have not found it yet.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Section 2 of the table of contents.
RAEDER: No, that must be something quite different. I have not got it here...
I have got it now.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you look at Section 2, which is: "Incorporation of the Navy in the National Socialist State." And you can see the proposed headings which were to cover some 30 pages: "National Socialism in the Navy before 1933." Then: "The oath of the Navy to the Fuehrer; the taking over of the National Insignia; the first alteration of the flag and the New War flag." Do you agree with Oberst Scherff's description? You agree that this is a correct description, that the proceedings could be described as the incorporation of the Navy in the National Socialist State?
RAEDER: Of course-I explained that here recently-the Navy- the Armed Forces-had to have some connection with the National Socialist State. A democratic Navy in a monarchy is impossible. The basic principles must agree. But I myself decided the extent to which these principles were adopted-that is to the degree where the Navy maintained its internal independence and yet occupied its appropriate position with regard to the National Socialist State.
Apart from that, I do not see any text here; I can only see the headings.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You say that doesn't offend you as a description. That is all I wanted to get clear. I do not want to spend a great deal of time.
RAEDER: But the headings mean nothing.
For instance, it might say in the actual text that the Navy did not fit into the National Socialist State properly. I do not know. The same holds good of the fleet. Of course...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am not going to waste time on it. There were three matters which you dealt with in your examination-in-chief, and I am not going to deal with them in detail; but I just want to remind you of them and put one general question. You can put that document away; I am not going to pursue it further. Would you mind putting that document away and giving me your attention for the next question?
You were asked about the E-boats, your survey list, that long document, in September 1933, and the question of disguised auxiliary cruisers as transport ships O. Is this a fair summary of your answer: That you admitted that these breaches of the Treaty took place, but said in each case that the breach was only a little one. Is that a fair summary of your answer? Is it?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, let's take it in bits, then. Are you disputing that any of these matters with regard to the E-boats, the matters on the survey lists or the transport ships O-are you disputing that any of these matters took place? I understood, you admitted they all did take place...
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RAEDER: No, they took place in the way I described. For instance, these auxiliary cruisers were not built. We were not allowed to do that. But we were allowed to make plans and we were allowed to select those ships which, in the event of war-if a war had broken out in which Germany was attacked by another state-could have been used as auxiliary cruisers. That was not a violation. If it were I would admit it. The U-boat designing office in Holland was not a violation of the Versailles Treaty either. The wording was quite different; I do not remember the third case which you mentioned.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, you remember there was a long list in a document, from yourself.
RAEDER: Yes, of course.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And I understood, maybe wrongly, that you admitted these things took place, but you said "it is only a little one."
RAEDER: Yes, of course. Those were small things, but they were urgently necessary in Germany's defense interests.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE Now, I want to ask you about an officer of yours, Vice Admiral Assmann. Was he an officer in whom you had confidence?
RAEDER: He was a very able historian.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Will you answer my question? Was he an officer in whom you had confidence?
RAEDER: I had confidence that he would write history correctly.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is all I wanted. Now, would you have a look at a new document, which is Document Number D-854, which, My Lord, will be Exhibit Number GB-460. Now, that is an extract from one of a series of essays on the operational and tactical considerations of the German Navy and consequent measures taken for its expansion between 1919 and 1939, contained among the files of Vice Admirals Assmann and Gladisch, who were in the historical section of the German Admiralty.
Now, would you mind not looking at it for a moment, Defendant? I want to ask you some questions and then you can look at it with pleasure afterwards. Do you agree that in nearly all spheres of armament where the Navy was concerned, the Treaty of Versailles was violated in the letter and all the more in the spirit? Do you agree with that?
RAEDER: No, by no means in every sphere. In the most important sphere we were far behind the Versailles Treaty, as I explained to you very clearly. Possibly we infringed on it the other way round, by not doing as much as we could have done.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Will you just look at this document. At the beginning of the first quotation your officers say:
"But if-as was stated-in nearly all spheres of armament where the Navy was concerned, the Treaty of Versailles was violated in the letter and all the more in the spirit-or at least its violation was prepared-a long time before the 16th of March 1935..."
Are your admirals wrong in stating that? Is that what you are telling the Tribunal?
RAEDER: May I please see which page this is on? I have not seen it yet. Yes, he says, "in nearly all spheres of naval armament . . ."
That is not the case, for in the sphere of...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That's what I put to you; is that right?
RAEDER: No, it is not right. We had not even built as many ships as we could have built, but-as I have explained repeatedly, the violations were concerned with...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You've explained that.
RAEDER: ... violations were...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Really, we do know the position of your shipbuilding yards. You've given that explanation and it's a matter of discussion whether it's of any value. I am not going to argue with you. I am asking you this question: Are you saying that the admirals of your historical section are wrong in that sentence that I read out to you?
RAEDER: Yes, I am stating that. It is wrong as it stands.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE I see. Well, now let's pass on- the Tribunal will judge that-to the statement of Admiral Assmann. It goes on:
"This probably took place in no other sphere, on the one hand so early, and on the other hand under such difficult circumstances, as in the construction of a new submarine arm. The Treaty of Versailles had only been in force a few months (since 10 January 1920) when it was already violated in this point."
Do you agree with Admiral Assmann on that?
RAEDER: No, he is wrong. It was not violated at all in this point, and the reason it started so early was because all the ex-U-boat commanders and U-boat officers and technicians were out of a job and offered their services to maintain technical developments in U-boats abroad; that is why it was so early. But that has
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nothing to do with me because I had no say in these matters then. At that time I was working on the Navy Archives.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, how are you able to be so confident today that Admiral Assmann is wrong? I thought you said that he was a good historian. He had not to go back very far. He only goes back 20 years.
RAEDER: A good historian can make mistakes too if his information is wrong. I merely said I had confidence in him...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You say quite in detail-the first paragraph is about Japan.
RAEDER: Yes; what he says about the building of U-boats is wrong.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, let's just see how far he was wrong. We needn't go into the first paragraph which deals with shipbuilding for Japan, but take the second one: "In 1922..." Do you see the paragraph which begins:
"As early as 1922, three German shipbuilding yards established a German U-boat designing office in Holland under a Dutch cover name with about 30 engineers and designers. In 1925 a Dutch shipbuilding yard built two 500-ton U-boats for Turkey according to the plans of this bureau, which enjoyed the financial and personal support of the Naval Command. In the solution of this question, too, Kapitaen zur See Lohmann was concerned decisively."
Is that right?
RAEDER: We have admitted that. That was in no way a violation of the Versailles Treaty.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: We'll not argue that, but it's right anyway. Admiral Assmann's right about that. Then he deals with Finland and with Spain. And, if you look at the end of the paragraph after dealing with Spain, he says:
"Already in the autumn of 1927 the Naval Designing Department was commissioned to carry out construction in Spain by the Chief of the Naval Command Staff, Admiral Zenker, who accepted the responsibility despite all the difficulties in the field of home politics. The working out of the project and the drawing up of the construction plans took place in the Dutch Bureau. After completion in 1931, the ship carried out trial runs and diving exercises from Cadiz to Cartagena, under German direction and with German personnel, consisting of officers, engineers, naval construction students and foremen."
That's all. That's quite right, isn't it?
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RAEDER: Yes, but the shipbuilding designer from our designing office, in particular, as well as the above-named other persons employed on U-boat construction, were discharged from the Navy
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And just look at the last sentence: "This boat which is now the Turkish submarine Guer became the prototype for the U-25 and U-26."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, the 250-ton submarines which were made in Finland. And, if you look at the last sentence of the next paragraph:
"The Finnish U-boat was the first U-boat plan to be worked out in Germany and successfully carried out; the Dutch bureau was called upon only to work out the details.
"The Finnish 250-ton vessel became the prototype for U-1 to U-24."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And now the next paragraph:
"The building and the thorough trial of the prototype vessel made if; possible to obtain the parts for U-1 to U-24 in 1933 to 1935, long before the order for the assembly of the vessels; and the latter was prepared beforehand as far as was possible without endangering secrecy."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, would you turn on to Page 156. You see where the next quotation is from:
"At the beginning of 1935"-that is 6 months before the Anglo-German Treaty-"there were probably six 250-ton boats ready for assembly, six 275-ton and two 750-ton boats on which preparatory work was being done. About 4 months were needed for assembling the small ships and about 10 months for the big ones, dating from 1 February 1935, but everything else was still quite uncertain."
Now, look at the next words:
"It is probably in this very sphere of submarine construction that Germany adhered least to the restrictions of the German-British Treaty.
"Considering the size of the U-boats which had already been ordered, about 55 U-boats could have been provided for up to 1938. In reality 118 were completed and under construction.
"The preparations for the new U-boat arm were made so early, so thoroughly and so carefully, that already 11 days after the conclusion of the German-British Naval Treaty,
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which permitted the construction of U-boats, the first German U-boat could be put into commission on 29 June 1935."
Now, take that sentence, which is written by Admiral Assmann, and we've seen what your connections with Assmann were through about 100 documents. He said: "It is probably in this very sphere of submarine construction that Germany adhered least to the restrictions of the German-British Treaty."
Now, you've told this Tribunal for about several hours of your evidence that that was a freely negotiated treaty of which you were very proud and which you were ready to support. Are you telling the Tribunal, that your admirals are wrong in saying that in submarine construction Germany adhered the least to the restrictions of that freely negotiated treaty?
RAEDER: That is a completely false judgment. I have stated here that, as long as no negotiations with Great Britain had taken place with regard to the pending agreement, all the preparations which we did make were exclusively attended to abroad-that in the proportion which probably...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Defendant, you can make your explanation . . .
RAEDER: Will you please stop interrupting me.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: We'll take it in this order, and don't get cross about it. You answer my question, and then you make your explanation. Now answer my question first. Are you saying that Admiral Assmann is wrong in saying in that first sentence that it was just in the "sphere of submarine construction that Germany adhered least to the restrictions of the German-British Treaty." Is Admiral Assmann wrong when he says that, is that what you're telling the Tribunal? Well, that is my question.
RAEDER: He is wrong. I said so; I have already said so.
DR. SIEMERS: Mr. President, I believe these are not questions relating to facts. They are questions for legal decisions. It is a legal argument as to just how Article 191 of the Versailles Treaty is to be interpreted.
THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal think that the question is quite proper. In his explanation, of course, he can explain that in his view it was not a breach of the Treaty and he has already explained that. He can give us his opinion about it. He was the head of the German Navy.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now, will you take the second sentence...
RAEDER: But I should like to finish if I may. I can give an explanation of that.
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All these things were only preparations made outside Germany. The point under discussion is whether the Finnish U-boats were constructed with the help of German designers. That is true. German designers were not forbidden to help Finnish designers to draft designs for U-boats. It is also true that this U-boat later...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I'm awfully sorry to interrupt you, but you know this isn't dealing-this sentence isn't dealing with this early period. This is dealing with the period after the Anglo-German Treaty in 1935 and that's what I want you to answer me about. This Finnish matter was long before that.
RAEDER: I am still speaking of the period preceding the agreement, for I was accused of manufacturing U-boat parts abroad. And the fact is that...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, I know, but don't you see that...
RAEDER: I have not given my answer yet. No...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am not asking you about that.
I like you to answer the right question. I'm not asking you about the question of Versailles any longer. I'm asking you about Admiral Assmann's assertion that you did not adhere to the restrictions of the German-British Treaty in 1935, and what you did in Finland in the 20's has nothing to do with that. Now, that's all. You can give your explanation.
RAEDER: That is entirely wrong We particularly restricted ourselves with regard to the construction of U-boats; and in 1938 we had still not built the 45 percent which we were entitled to build, so we made an application for permission to build up to 100 percent; and this was agreed on, and came into effect, as appears from the text of the English treaty, after a friendly discussion with the British Admiralty at the end of 1938. At the beginning of the war we still did not have 100 percent. We were always behind with the construction of submarines.
Admiral Assmann, who probably had no up-to-date knowledge of these matters, is quite wrong. I can swear to that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Just look at the next sentences.
This is dealing...
RAEDER: What page are you speaking of?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Page 156. I will read it very slowly again:
"Considering the size of the U-boats which had already been ordered, about 55 U-boats could have been provided for up to 1938. In reality 118 were completed and under construction."
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Are you saying that Admiral Assmann is wrong when he states that?
RAEDER: I am awfully sorry; I still have not got the passage from which you are reading, that is quite-which line...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Have you got the sentence, Defendant?
RAEDER: Yes, I have found it now.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, you see what Admiral Assmann says, that:
"Considering the size of the U-boats which had already been ordered, about 55 U-boats could have been provided for up to 1938." That is before there was any mention of going from 45 to 100. "In reality 118 were completed and under construction."
Are you saying that Admiral Assmann is wrong in giving these figures?
RAEDER: Certainly. In 1939 we entered the war with 40 submarines-I do not know the exact number. This is either a misprint or quite an incredible figure. As you know, we started the war with-I think-26 U-boats capable of sailing the Atlantic, and in addition a number of smaller boats. I cannot tell you for certain now what was under construction at the beginning of the war but there was no intention of this kind. That was precisely the accusation made against me-that I did not have sufficient U-boats built in good time. I dispute the whole of that sentence.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You agree then, Defendant, that Admiral Assmann's figures are quite incompatible with what you have told the Tribunal about the number of U-boats with which you started the war?
DR. SIEMERS: I should be grateful to Sir David if he would read the entire sentence; that is, if he would also read Note 6, which appears after the Number 118 and after the word "ordered." Note 6 which, as I have just observed, is not included in the English translation is worded as follows: "Chief of the Naval Budget Department, B. Number E 311/42, Top Secret, of 19 November 1942."
The figure, Mr. President, refers to a much later period, not 1938 at all.
I should be extremely grateful if, after the experience we have just had, I could in future have not only the German document but also the English translation from Sir David. I should be very grateful to Sir David if he could have this done.
THE PRESIDENT: Could you not have the passage you want translated from the German into English by the time you want
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to re-examine? As I understand it, you are referring to some note which is an addition to what has been translated into English. Will you read it again, would you read the passage again?
DR. SIEMERS: Sir David has been reading the following: "In reality 118 were completed and under construction."
That is as far as Sir David has read. After the word "ordered" there is the figure 6. This refers to Note 6. Note 6 is worded as follows: "Chief of the Naval Budget Department, B. Number E 311/42, Top Secret, of 19 November 1942. (Page 19)."
In other words, this shows that the Number 118 must have been mentioned on Page 19 of this document of the Naval Budget Department in 1942. The figure therefore does not refer to the year 1938 but to a later date.
RAEDER: I can add another explanation to that which is quite possible.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: My Lord, I will look into that, but the text says-and there is no difference in the German text- exactly what I read-that "about 55 could have been provided up to 1938 and that in reality 118 were ready and ordered." That is Admiral Assmann's text.
DR. SIEMERS: But not 1938.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Really, My Lord, my friend, Dr. Siemers, will have ample opportunity-if there is any point, I shall consider it, but there is the text, and the text includes that. What the footnote says, Dr. Siemers, can be put in re-examination.
THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): Sir David, will you look at the note and see if the report was made in 1942, rather than the construction? I, suggest that you ask him whether or not the note doesn't show that the report was made in 1942, rather than the construction-I suggest that you ask him whether or not the note doesn't show that the report was made in 1942, rather than the construction.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Really, my translation of this note is "Chief of the Naval Budget Department." Then it gives
the reference to his note, dated 19 November 1942. It seems entirely to bear out the suggestion of the learned American Judge, that this is the reference to the report, nothing more. It is only suggesting that the date of construction was 1942, and I think it really would be a matter of convenience that, unless Dr. Siemers has got something to say on the text that I am putting, if he reserved these argumentative points to re-examination.
THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Siemers, you can raise it all in re-examination. You can have a translation of this note laid before us by that time.
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DR. SIEMERS: Mr. President, I am perfectly agreeable. I have merely requested that one copy of the English translation of the newly submitted documents should be given to me.
Mr. President, you will admit that it is a considerable handicap to me to ascertain during the cross-examination what passages are missing from the translation and translate them myself when the British Delegation have an English translation on hand. I think it might be easier if Sir David would be good enough to let me have an English translation for my own use.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, you will be able to let him have an English translation of any new document?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Certainly. The Tribunal has ordered that. That is prepared. Surely you got the English translation? Certainly, My Lord. As I put each document, a translation will be given to Dr. Siemers.
THE PRESIDENT: There may have been some mistake.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You will certainly get it.
[Turning to the defendants] Now, we will pass to another gentleman on your staff. You told us a good deal about the naval budgets. Do you remember a Flottenintendant in your department, Secretary Flottenintendant Thiele, of the OKM Department E, the Budget Department of the German Admiralty? Do you remember?
RAEDER: Yes. Mr. Prosecutor, may I just say one more thing about the question of 118? I have just remembered something in connection with this Number 6, Chief of the Naval Budget Department. It is perfectly possible that in this case Admiral Assmann has taken two things together. All U-boats and ships were, of course, included in the budget and in this way sanctioned. This budget was drafted at the end of the year and published before the year to which it applied. As this large figure suddenly appears in this document, it is perfectly possible that here the Figure 118 originates on the basis of the agreement with England made on 30 or 31 December. It is perfectly natural that we should include in the budget all the other U-boats which we were allowed to build to complete the 100 percent. This does not necessarily mean that we started to build the U-boats in 1938. Incidentally I think we might have perhaps begun, because one can only build so and so many U-boats in any one year.
I think that this explanation, which occurred to me when I saw the words "Naval Budget Department," is a perfectly correct one.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The Tribunal has the wording) that is, "up to 1938," and I am not going to argue the point with you. The words speak for themselves.
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I would like you to look at Document Number D-855, which becomes Exhibit Number GB-461, and it is an extract from a lecture by the gentleman I have just mentioned, Herr Thiele, which was given at the German Naval Training Center for Administrative Officers in Prague on 12 July 1944. The extract I want to put to you is on Page 22, and it is headed "Ship Construction Plan." Have you got that-Page 22, and the heading is "Ship Construction Plan"? You see the paragraph beginning:
"The era of the very large development of the Navy had therefore come at the moment of the seizure of power. Already in the first year after this, in March 1935, the construction of battle cruisers with a displacement of 27,000 tons was undertaken. Such a vessel was ordered to be constructed. Thus one of the clauses of the Treaty of Versailles which was the most important for us was at once violated in the naval sphere in a manner which in a short time could no longer be camouflaged."
Is not Flottenintendant Thiele right when he says that in his lecture?
RAEDER: Of course it was a violation, but I have explained here at length that there was no question of building new battle cruisers but of utilizing the two armored ships which had already been granted us; and I said that in 1934 Hitler had only given me permission to enlarge somewhat the plans for these ships, so that the armor might be heavier. I see from this that it was not until March 1935, when it was certain that the treaty would be concluded and also that England would allow us to build such ships through this treaty in a few months' time that the Fuehrer sanctioned the plans projected for the 26,500 ton ships which were to be the first of the battleships in the new program; and they were then begun. So that the three 28 cm turrets-that is, the offensive weapons which he had not yet approved in 1934-were thrown in.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: This gentleman seems to agree with you more than the other. Just look at what he says about U-boats two sentences further on. He says:
"The U-boats were completed in separate parts, as their construction was under no circumstances to be apparent to the outside world. These parts were stored in sheds for the time being and needed only to be assembled after the declaration of freedom to rearm."
Is not Flottenintendant Thiele right on that point?
RAEDER: Yes, he is right. We have admitted that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let us look at his next point.
RAEDER: Perhaps I can complete my explanation? We...
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Do try to keep it as short as you can. I don't want to cut you out, but keep it as short as you can.
RAEDER: Of course, but I must complete my defense.
We had U-boat parts manufactured abroad and only at the beginning of 1935 did we bring them in and assemble them, when the naval treaty was certain.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE I see. You say you were anticipating the treaty; well now, just look at what he says after that:
"The third also of those clauses of the Treaty of Versailles that was most disadvantageous for us, the limitation of personnel to 15,000 men, was immediately ignored after the seizure of power. The total personnel of the Navy was already 25,000 in 1934, and in 1935, the year of the London Naval Agreement, 34,000 men."
Is not Flottenintendant Thiele right on that? Is that right?
RAEDER: Yes, that is admitted. It was clear that we had to train personnel in good time so that crews might be available for our increased naval forces.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now I just want you to look for a moment at the document which is on Page 3 of Document Book 10, which you did refer to in your examination-in-chief. That is Document C-23, about the displacement of the Scharnhorst and the Gneisenau and the Tirpitz and the Bismarck and the other ships.
Now, you are familiar with that document; we have discussed it.
RAEDER: Yes. I know the documents.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, that is dated the 18th of February, 1938. Germany didn't denounce the Anglo-German Naval Treaty until after the British guarantee to Poland in April 1939, which is 14 months later. Why didn't you simply send a notification to Great Britain that the displacements had come out 20 percent bigger because of defensive matters in construction? Why didn't you do it?
RAEDER: I cannot tell you that today. We explained recently how the displacements gradually increased through quite insignificant changes to our own detriment.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes. Really, Defendant, I have got that well in mind. We have got the reason why the displacements came out bigger, and I don't think you are prejudicing yourself if you don't repeat it, but just look at the bottom of that page, because I think you will find the reason which you can't remember there; won't you?
"In the opinion of A IV, it would be quite wrong to report a larger tonnage than that which will probably be published
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shortly, for instance, by England, Russia, or Japan, so as not to bring upon ourselves the odium of an armament race." Isn't that the reason?
RAEDER: Yes, that was intended for a future date. We wished in no circumstance to create the impression that we were increasing the offensive power of our ships
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Defendant, I am going to pass to another subject, and I want to put quite shortly and bluntly, as you will appreciate, the point the Prosecution puts to you, that for 20 years, from 1918 to 1938, you and the German Navy had been involved in a course of complete, cold and deliberate deception of your treaty obligations. That is what I am putting to you. Do you understand? After these documents, do you deny that that is so?
RAEDER: Of course. It was not a cold-blooded affair. All our evasions of the Versailles Treaty were due to our desire to be able to defend our country more efficiently than we had been allowed to. I have proved here that in the Versailles regulations the only points restricted were those unfavorable to the defense of our country and favoring aggression from without. As regards the ships, I may add that we could never complete any very great number of ships, and consequently we were interested in increasing as far as possible the power of resistance, that is, their seagoing security, et cetera. At no time did we increase the offensive power above the strength which was permitted.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Defendant, I want you to understand what my next series of questions is directed to. I don't want there to be any misapprehension. I am now going to suggest to you that these breaches of treaty and your naval plans were directed toward the possibility, and then the probability of war. I would just like you to take the same document that I have been dealing with, C-23. We will use that to pass from one to the other.
Would you turn to Page 5 of Document Book 10, and there you will see that there is a memorandum, I think of the Planning Committee to the Flottenchef, Admiral Carls. We have heard your view of Admiral Carls, that you thought he was a very good officer, and in fact he was your first choice for your successor.
Now, that is in September 1938, and it is a top secret opinion on the strategic study of naval warfare against England, and you see "A" says:
"There is full agreement with the main theme of the study." Now, look at Paragraph 1:
"If, according to the Fuehrer's decision, Germany is to acquire a position as a world power, she needs not only sufficient
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colonial possessions, but also secure naval communications and secure access to the oceans."
Do you agree with that, Defendant?
RAEDER: Yes, that is correct. I know the whole document.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, look at 2:
"Both these requirements can only be fulfilled in opposition to Anglo-French interests, and would limit their position as world powers. It is unlikely that this can be achieved by peaceful means. The decision to make Germany a world power, therefore, forces upon us the necessity of -making corresponding preparations for war."
Do you agree with that?
RAEDER: Yes, that is all quite correct.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, let's take 3:
"War against England means at the same time war against the Empire, against France, probably against Russia as well, and a large number of countries overseas-in fact, against half to two-thirds of the whole world."
I needn't ask you about that, because the facts have shown it.
Now, look at the next: "It can only be justified...."
RAEDER: Yes, but I must be allowed to comment on that document.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Oh certainly, I'm sorry. We got on so quickly I thought we were not going to have any explanation.
RAEDER: In 1938, as has been stated here quite often, the Fuehrer's attitude towards Great Britain became more difficult in spite of all the efforts of General Von Blomberg and myself to tell him that it was not so on England's side, and that it was possible to live in peace with England. In spite of that the Fuehrer ordered us to prepare for possible opposition by England to his plans. He for his part never contemplated a war of aggression against Great Britain; and we in the Navy still much less; in fact, I have proved that I did nothing but try to dissuade him from that. In 1938 he ordered us to make a study similar to those we had already made in the case of other possibilities of war-which it was the duty of the Wehrmacht Command to do-but dealing with the course which a war against England might take and what we would require for it. This study was prepared, and I reported to the Fuehrer that we could never increase our fighting forces to such an extent that we could undertake a war against England with any prospect of success-- it would have been madness for me to say such a thing. I told him-that has repeatedly been mentioned- that by 1944 or 1945 we might build up a small naval force with
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which we could start an economic war against England or seize her commercial shipping routes, but that we would never really be in a position to defeat England with that force. I sent this study, which was compiled under my guidance in the Naval Operations Staff, to Generaladmiral Carls who was very clear-sighted in all such questions. He thought it his duty to explain in this introduction of his reply, which agreed with our opinion, the consequences which such a war against Great Britain would have for ourselves, namely, that it would bring about a new world war, which neither he nor we in the Navy nor anyone in the Armed Forces wanted- in my opinion, not even Hitler himself, as I proved the other day-hence this statement. He said that if we must have war with England, it was essential that we should first of all have access to the ocean and, secondly, that we should attack English trade on the sea route of the Atlantic. Not that he proposed that we, on our part, should embark on such a venture. He was only thinking of the case of such a war breaking out very much against our will. It was our duty to go thoroughly into the matter.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: He says that, "The war against it"-that is the war against England-"can only be justified and have a chance of success if it is prepared economically as well as politically and militarily." Then you go on to say "waged with the aim of conquering for Germany an outlet to the ocean."
Now, I just want to see how you prepared.
RAEDER: Yes, that is quite clear and quite correct.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let's just look how you had begun to prepare economically. Let's take that first, as you put it first.
Would you look at Document C-29, which is Page 8.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, hadn't we better break off now before going into this?
[A recess was taken.]
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I told you, Defendant, that I was next going to ask you a question about Document C-29, which is on Page 8 of the English Document Book 10 and on Pages 13 and 14 of the German document book. You will remember, this document gives general directions for export given by the German Navy to the German armament industry...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: . . . and you told us when you were dealing with the document that you wanted your service not
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to be small-minded about matters of a not very high secrecy but, in addition to that, your general policy was that the German armament firms should develop a foreign trade so that they would have the capacity to deal with the increased demands of the German Navy as soon as possible. Is that right, is that a fair summary, or shall I repeat it?
RAEDER: Yes, but it must be added that I said in two places that we hoped at that time that the Treaty of Versailles would be relaxed, because it was a comparatively favorable period for negotiations for disarmament and we already had the governments headed by Von Papen and Von Schleicher, both of whom showed great understanding for the needs of the Armed Forces and therefore fought hard for that at the disarmament conference. So a definitely legal development might be hoped for in this direction; and on the other hand, our entire industry was unable to cope with armaments production except on an insignificant scale and had therefore to be increased. I again stress the fact that it had nothing to do with the Hitler regime. That decree just happened to come out on 31 January.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I don't think you are really disagreeing with me that your policy, your broad economic policy for the German armament industry, was to develop its export trade so as to be able to deal with increased home requirements in future years; that is what you advocated, isn't it, that the German armament industry should at once increase its export trade so as to be able to deal with increased home requirements when these requirements arose? Isn't that right?
RAEDER: Yes, that is correct but I do not quite understand that expression. Did you say "Eigenhandel" or "Eisenhandel"-internal trade or iron trade? I did not quite hear the expression-"Eigenhandel" or "Eisenhandel"?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: "Aussenhandel" (Foreign Trade).
RAEDER: "Aussenhandel"-yes, undoubtedly we wanted to be able to compete industrially with other nations, so that our industry would be in favorable position, and would gain strength.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, I will ask you to turn to Document Number C-135, which is Page 21 of the-sorry My Lord, Page 20 of the English document book and Page 73 of the German document book.
THE PRESIDENT: Book 10.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Book 10, My Lord, yes.
[Turning to the defendant.] Now, you remember that document, you dealt with it? You said...
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RAEDER: Yes, it was dealt with in the Lohmann affidavit.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, it is a document of the- I think, in April 1933, judging by the dates which I put to you a moment ago, and you said to the Tribunal in giving your evidence that it was mere chance that the. year 1938 was mentioned; that that was the same period as has been dealt with.
RAEDER: It has already been stated several times that the year 1938 was mentioned.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Has it been mentioned in some Weimar Republic document? Will you just look at the second last paragraph; that will be on your Page 74, Page 21 of the English document. It is in the middle paragraph of Paragraph 3:
"Now Reichskanzler Adolf Hitler had made the clear political request to build up for him in 5 years, that is, by the first of April 1938, armed forces which he could place in the balance as an instrument of political power."
Is that sure, that Hitler had made a clear political request?
RAEDER: Yes, as far as I remember, he demanded a sort of five year plan in 1933 the last year of which, 1938, happened to coincide with the 1938 mentioned in our substitute plan for subsurface construction, and that directive had obviously been given for the whole of the Armed Forces; since the naval agreement, which gave us the right to arm only in the proportion of 1:3 and not in accordance with any special plans, had become the basis for the Navy as early as 1935.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The point that I want to deal with is this: Did Hitler tell you that he wanted these forces to place in the balance as an instrument of political power, did he tell you that?
RAEDER: I can no longer tell you that; but I believe that it is a perfectly ordinary expression to say that one uses one's armed forces as an instrument which could also be thrown into the scales at political negotiations, so that we need no longer be kicked around by the different nations, as had so far been the case. In my opinion, no suspicion attaches to the expression.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: To put it bluntly, Hitler was telling you, "by 1938 I want armed forces that I can use in war, if war should become necessary." That is what it means, isn't it? That is what you understood it to mean, isn't that right?
RAEDER: No. There was no word about a war, only about the fact that we had to keep our position among the other nations so that we could no longer be tossed aside, as had hitherto been the case.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: If anyone tried to push you over, you could fight; that is it, wasn't it?
RAEDER: That is obvious. That would be the case, of course, if we were attacked. We wanted to be in a position to defend ourselves if we were attacked. Up till that point we were unable to do this.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE Now, just let us take the first example, when you contemplated fighting. If you look at Document Book 10a, Document Number C-140, Page 104 of the English translation and Page 157 of the German version, you remember that is the directive of Field Marshal Von Blomberg on Germany leaving the disarmament conference and League of Nations. And there, there is a pretty full general directive as to what military measures you would take if the members of the League of Nations applied sanctions against you; in other words you were quite prepared...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: . . . for a war happening on that peace policy; that is so, isn't it, and that is what it says, it gives all preparations ready for fighting?
RAEDER: These preparations were made, if I remember correctly, 11 days after we had left the League of Nations, and it was quite natural that, if the Fuehrer believed that in consequence of our leaving the League of Nations, which was quite a peaceful action in itself, warlike measures or sanctions would be applied against us, we would have to defend ourselves; and if such an attack was probable we had to take these preparatory steps.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: So you realized, Defendant, that as early as October 1933 the course of Hitler's foreign policy might have brought about an immediate war, did you not?
RAEDER: No, I did not expect at all that such a measure as the secession from the League of Nations, where we had always been treated unjustly because we had no power behind us, would result in a war with any other power. Nevertheless, it was right to take such eventualities into consideration.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I see. That is good enough for me.
Now, just let us look at the same document book, Document Number C-153, on Page 107 of the English version and Page 164 to 167 of the German version. That is, you will remember, your armament plan for the third armament phase, and I would just like you first of all to look at Paragraph 3.
In (a) and (b) of Paragraph 3 you give the general basis for your arrangements:
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"(a) For the military leaders a sound basis for their strategic considerations, and
"(b) For the political leaders a clear picture of what may be achieved with the military means available at a given time."
RAEDER: Yes, it is quite obvious that such a plan would have this purpose.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And that your political leaders were to make their plans on what armed forces you had available for war, if necessary. That was what you were contemplating then, was it not?
RAEDER: Yes, that is a matter of course; I reported to the Fuehrer that I could put a certain military strength at his disposal during that year. The Chief of State must know that in order to know what he can count on. But that has nothing to do with plans for war. That is the case in every state. On the other hand, I cannot influence the political leader as to what he wants. I can only report what I could have. Therefore, I had nothing to do with political matters. I only did what is necessary and what is done in every state.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And just look at Paragraph 7.
I am not going to argue with you as to whether states base their foreign politics on things other than war as a matter of argument, but look at Paragraph 7: "All theoretical and practical R-preparations (armament) are to be drawn up with a primary view to readiness for a sudden war."
That is that you, as far as the Navy was concerned, you had to be ready then for an immediate war footing, have the Navy on an immediate war footing, isn't that right?
RAEDER: No, no. This concerns the sequence of the things to be taken for granted. The armament plan listed the most important immediate requirements of the Navy and at that point I say here that this applied to weapons to be used in a war where there was no time to prepare and that is, in plain language, the mobile fleet, which must be in a state of constant readiness. It had to be kept ready for action at a moment's notice and it had to receive priority. All other matters, such as quarters, and things that had nothing to do with direct combat; were attended to afterwards.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I thought that is what I put to you, that the fleet had to be ready and ready for war. However, you have given your account of it.
Just turn over, if you will be so good, to Page 66 of Document Book 10, Page 285 of the German document book, Document Number C-189, My Lord.
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[Turning to the defendant.] Now, I want to raise just this one point on which you made a point in your examination and which I must challenge. You say in Paragraph 2:
"The Commander-in-Chief of the Navy expresses the opinion that later on"-and I ask you to note the words "later on"- "the fleet must anyhow be developed against England and that therefore from 1936 onwards the large ships must be armed with 35 centimeter guns."
Now, are you telling the Tribunal, that "gegen England" does not mean "against" in the sense of in antagonism to, directed against, in opposition to-that it merely means in comparison to? Are you seriously saying that, are you?
RAEDER: I explained the other day that we are dealing here with the question of keeping up with other navies. Up to that time we were keeping up with the French Navy which had 33 cm guns. Then England went beyond that in mounting 35.6 cm guns on her ships and then, as I said before, France went beyond England in using 38 cm guns. Thus I said to the Fuehrer that our 28 cm guns which we believed we could use against the French Dunkerque class would not be heavy enough, and that we would have to take the next bigger caliber, that is 35.6 like those of the English ships That was never done because the French began to use 38 cm guns and our Bismarck class followed the French lines.
That comparison of calibers and classes of vessels was at that time quite customary and was also...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You told us all that before and my question is a perfectly simple one; that this document in the original German, when you say "gegen England" is exactly the same as in your song Wir fahren gegen England. It means against, in antagonism and directed against, and not in comparison. That is what I am putting to you and it is a perfectly short point.
Are you telling this Tribunal that "gegen England" means in comparison with England?
RAEDER: That is what I want to say; because it says "develop gegen England" and at that time we had not even signed the Naval Agreement. It is hardly likely that I would consider following an anti-British policy.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Look to the next page, Document Number C-190, Page 67 of the English document book, Page 284 of the German document book. That is your conversation with Hitler on the 2nd November 1934, when you are discussing bigger naval estimates and the availability of more money. I want you to look at the end of the first paragraph which gives Hitler's reasons.
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"He considers it vital that the Navy be increased as planned"- now look-"as no war could be carried on if the Navy were not able to safeguard the ore imports from Scandinavia."
Are you still telling the Tribunal you were not from 1934 onwards contemplating war? Well, if so, why does Hitler say that? That is one of the most vital points of German naval strategy.
"No war could be carried on if the Navy were not able to safeguard the ore imports from Sweden."
Were you not contemplating war in November? Were you not?
RAEDER: Hitler said that a navy is built so that, if war becomes necessary, the navy can use its weapons to defend the country. A navy is established for no other purpose, and that was definitely one of the general reasons for the existence of a German Navy. There were many people who thought a navy was unnecessary.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You see, what I am putting to you is this. You have told the Tribunal that the Navy was purely defensive, all your preparations were purely defensive. I am suggesting to you that Hitler there is contemplating a war and contemplating the task of a navy during a war, a few months before he intended to denounce the military clauses of Versailles.
You were all set for a war if it should become necessary, and you knew that. Was that not the position?
RAEDER: That is a complete misrepresentation of the facts, Mr. Prosecutor. Of course it is necessary during peacetime to contemplate the circumstances which might arise to make it necessary to call on the Armed Forces for defense. At that time nobody thought of a war of aggression, and the individual tasks must be understood. One of the Navy's tasks was undoubtedly to secure the Swedish and Norwegian ore exports in case of war; and it had to be developed with a view to that end.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you just look at the next sentence in Paragraph 2: "When I pointed out that in the critical political situation in the first quarter of 1935, it would be desirable to have six U-boats already assembled...."
You were preparing for the critical political situation.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let's look at what you were doing in 1936. Would you give the defendant and Dr. Siemers Document Number D-806.
That is a report of yours dated the 11th of November 1936, dealing with the U-boat construction program, and after the first paragraph you say this in the second paragraph:
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"The military and political situation urgently demands that the extension of our U-boat fleet should be taken in hand immediately and completed with the greatest energy and dispatch, as it is a particularly valuable part of our armament at sea and possesses special striking power."
Are you saying that what you were urging there was purely defensive and that you had no idea of the special striking powers that would be needed in a war?
RAEDER: The entire political situation, or so I seem to remember, made me consider it necessary to put the construction of submarines in the foreground. But I never expected that we would start a war on our own account. Hitler himself had told me that again and again, but he had made his political moves which could undoubtedly lead us into war if the other powers intervened against such a political move. The charge made against me was that I did not push the construction of U-boats sufficiently far ahead.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You are stressing it sufficiently there, aren't you? "On the military and political situation"-you were kept fully informed of the political situation and were adjusting your naval armament accordingly; isn't that so?
RAEDER: At that time I not only knew nothing about what was going to happen, but I knew that we had occupied the Rhineland during that year, and that in consequence of the clouds which appeared on the horizon as a result of the occupation of the Rhineland Hitler maintained an attitude of greatest caution and said that we must be prepared for further complications. For that reason a special directive was issued in 1936, and I took precautions along the lines suggested by these considerations. My main duty was to watch; and on the basis of my observations and the conclusions which I drew from them, I had to strengthen myself as much as possible. This document, about which you did not question me, had the same connotation.
I asked whether-should political tension develop at the beginning of 1935, before the signing of the Naval Agreement, and that would not be done till June-we should perhaps assemble six U-boats. That was also in the case of tension arising; and I knew at that time that the declaration of freedom of territorial defense was intended to be made in 1935.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now, you have told us what you knew in 1936. Now, just let's pass on to 1937. I want to know exactly what you say. That of course, as you remember, turns on the Hossbach Document, 386-PS, which is at Page 81 of Document Book 10, Page 314 of the German document book.
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THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, did you give the number of that last document?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am very grateful, My Lord. It is Exhibit GB-462.
[Turning to the defendant.] Now, I want you just-have you got that, Page 314 of the German document book?
RAEDER: Can you tell me the paragraph? I have...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, the first thing I want to ask you about is the third paragraph, the last sentence, where Hitler is reported as saying: "The German future is therefore dependent exclusively on the solution of the need for living space."
And then I wanted you, if you would be so good, to turn over two pages to 316. My Lord, it is Page 83 of the English document book. That is repeated. My Lord, it is about seven lines down. Where Hitler says: "The only way out, and one which may appear imaginary, is the securing of greater living space." And then he says that: "The history of all times has proved that every space expansion can only be effected by breaking resistance." And then in a separate paragraph he says: "The question for Germany is where the greatest possible conquest could be made at the lowest cost."
Do you see that, on Page 316?
RAEDER: May I begin with the last one? It is wrongly translated.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, that's what I'm really going to ask you. I want you to just tell us, did you hear Hitler say that that was the general problem, "the greatest possible conquest to be made at the lowest cost."
RAEDER: No. The English document has the word "conquest" (Eroberung), but that is not in the German document. The German text reads: "the highest possible gain (Gewinn) with the smallest risk." That is a phrase borrowed from sport. There is no mention of conquest.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I'm quite prepared to accept that it comes after the passage which I have referred to you in quite some detail, because I don't want to select anything out of the context. Did you appreciate that Hitler there was saying, "The only possibility for Germany is to get extra living space," and that had to be got at the expense of other nations? He said that, didn't he?
RAEDER: He did say that; and I explained recently how that is to be understood. He was speaking of Austria and Czechoslovakia,
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of the Sudetenland. We were of the opinion that no change was intended in that policy; nor did one take place later. War was not waged against Austria or Czechoslovakia.
We were all convinced that he would solve that question peacefully, like all other political questions. I explained that in great detail.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Wed now, that is what I was going to ask you about. You have taken my second point yourself. The rest of the document deals with action against Austria and Czechoslovakia. Would you look at Page 86?
I think you will agree with me that Field Marshal Von Blomberg and General Von Fritsch rather poured cold water on Hitler's ideas. Isn't that a fair way of putting it?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: They rather thus showed a certain antipathy?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, that was in November 1937.
RAEDER: We all of us told him constantly that in no circumstances might he start a war with England and France, and he always agreed. But I explained that this entire speech had a definite purpose; and that for this purpose he exaggerated a great deal and at once withdrew that exaggeration when a hint was given to him about the danger of a war with France and England.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That was what I was going to ask you. That was in November. By January, Field Marshal Von Blomberg had made his unfortunate marriage, hadn't he?
RAEDER: I believe it was in January. I do not know exactly.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And you took the view, didn't you, that he had been encouraged to do that by the Defendant Goering?
RAEDER: I never said that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Oh, didn't you?
RAEDER: No, not that I know of. I never thought that at all.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You remember making a statement in Moscow on this point? Let me read it to you.
RAEDER: To whom, please?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: In Moscow to the Russians.
"At the beginning of the year 1938 I had experiences of a personal nature, which although they did not concern the
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Navy directly caused me to lose confidence, not only in Goering but also in the sincerity of the Fuehrer. The situation in which Field Marshal Von Blomberg found himself as a result of his unfortunate marriage made his position as a Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces impossible. I came to the belated conclusion that Goering was making every effort to obtain the post of Commander-in-Chief of the Wehrmacht in place of Blomberg.
"He favored the marriage because it made Blomberg ineligible for this post, while Blomberg believed-and even stated repeatedly-that such a marriage was possible under the present system. Goering had already had him shadowed in the past, as I learned from later remarks."
Didn't you say that?
RAEDER: In Moscow, immediately after the collapse, I made a note of the causes of the collapse as seen in the light of my own experience. I wrote this document under the conditions there- where I was treated very chivalrously-and I had no hesitation in informing the highest general of the Commissariat of the Interior of this when I was asked what I was doing there.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: All I want to know is, is that true, what you said?
RAEDER: Yes. I wrote these notes, and it is also true that it occurred to me afterwards that Goering might have favored the marriage. I believe that he himself told me that here. He had assisted Blomberg in such a way that, I think, he did not know what the true state of affairs was or how serious the matter was.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: But you see, your view at that time was that Goering was encouraging the marriage because he knew that it would put Blomberg off the map as Commander-inChief because he, Goering, wanted the position. Was that the view that you held last summer?
RAEDER: I believed that last summer, yes. And it is also true that Goering certainly wanted to become Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, but the Fuehrer himself thwarted him in that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, that was Von Blomberg. We know what happened to him. Your second choice, after Von Blomberg, was Von Fritsch, was it not? You thought that Von Fritsch would have been the best Commander-in-Chief if Von Blomberg went, did you not?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You mentioned that to Hitler? And . . .
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RAEDER: He asked me, and I said that if I were consulted, I would suggest Baron van Fritsch. But the Fuehrer said that that was out of the question.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes. But there were some of them bringing a charge of homosexuality against Von Fritsch; isn't that right? That was why it could not be done?
RAEDER: Yes. He said, in general terms, that some kind of moral crime existed.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You were one of the court who inquired into that charge, were you not? Goering, as president, you and General Von Brauchitsch?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And you came to the conclusion that the charge of homosexuality against Von Fritsch was a frame-up by the Gestapo, did you not? Do you know what I mean? I am afraid "frame-up" is rather difficult to translate.
RAEDER: The whole thing gave me that impression. Yes.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE That is because the denunciation had been by some shady character who you thought was a "hang-around" of the Gestapo; and at the trial, the co-operation of the Gestapo with the accuser was brought to light; that is right, is it not?
You were satisfied, from sitting at the trial?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And you agree that there had been-not a confusion-but that the guilty party was a cavalry captain, Rittmeister Von Fritsch, and not this general at all; isn't that right?
RAEDER: I agree absolutely. We acquitted Baron von Fritsch because his innocence was proved. There was no suspicion of any kind remaining against him.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You acquitted him, but his reinstatement did not follow? His reinstatement in command did not follow?
RAEDER: No. I went to him, as I knew him very well, and asked him if he would agree to my going to Hitler and suggesting that he, Baron van Fritsch, be reinstated. But Fritsch replied that he considered that quite impossible. He thought that his authority was so much impaired that he would no longer care to resume his position as Commander-in-Chief of the Army.
After that, unfortunately, I could do no more about it. I reported this to the Fuehrer, but there were no further developments. All
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that happened was that the Fuehrer confirmed the absolute innocence of Baron von Fritsch in a large assembly of generals and admirals.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: And did you say this with regard to the Von Fritsch incident:
"I was convinced that Goering had a hand in this well prepared situation, since in order to attain his goal it was necessary to eliminate every possible successor to Von Blomberg"?
Do you remember saying that?
RAEDER: I do not remember that now; but I believe that I held that opinion. To be quite just, I must say that Baron von Fritsch's acquittal was due principally to the way in which Goering conducted the proceedings. The witness who was brought up told so many lies and made so many contradictory statements every few minutes, that only Goering could cope with him. After seeing that, I was very thankful that I had not been appointed president, as suggested by the Minister of Justice. I could not have coped with those people. It was entirely due to Goering's intervention that he was acquitted without any difficulties.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: But of course, I think you have said, Witness, that whether he was acquitted or not, the authority of Van Fritsch in the German Army was in his own view destroyed by the fact that this charge had been brought against him. That was the result of it, was it not?
RAEDER: Herr Von Fritsch thought so. I would have insisted on being reinstated after I had been acquitted in that manner.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Did it not strike you as curious that the two people who on the 5th of November had tried to head Hitler off? from a course that might have meant war were both disgraced in 2 months? Didn't it strike you as curious?
RAEDER: That did not strike me as curious at all; and there is certainly no connection. If Hitler had thought it necessary to remove the men in high positions who opposed him in such matters, he would have had to remove me long ago. But he never said anything about it to me, and I have never noticed that he said anything like that because I contradicted him. I have frequently pointed out, with regard to that very question of England and France, that no war should be caused there; and I never had the impression that he ever took it amiss.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, just let us take it very shortly. Within 6 weeks of the disgrace of Blomberg and the removal of Von Fritsch, the Anschluss with Austria took place.
Are you telling the Tribunal that you did not know that there were pretended military preparations for the Anschluss with
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Austria, the ones described by General Jodl in his diary and also described by Field Marshal Keitel? Did you know that these threats of military action would have been made?
RAEDER: I do not believe that I ever took part in a military discussion concerning the Austrian Anschluss, because actually I had nothing to do with it. But I should like to emphasize here, once and for all, that I learned of such enterprises as, for instance, the annexation of Austria through a directive issued by the Fuehrer, and not before, because one copy of these directives, regardless of whether or not they concerned the Navy, was always sent to me as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy. So, of course, I must have received a directive in this case, too. Unfortunately, I cannot tell you the date of it; but I confirm that a directive came to my knowledge.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You see, the point that I am putting-and I do not want to waste time on it-is this: That on the 5th of November Hitler said that he was going to get Austria in 1943 to 1945 at the latest, and earlier if an opportunity arises. Four months later, in March 1938, he takes Austria after having got rid of the people who threw cold water on his plans. But if you did not know about it, we shall not waste time, but shall look at Czechoslovakia, because there you did get the decree.
You will find that on Page 163 of Document Book 10a, Page 276 of the German document book. That is the distribution of the directive for operations against Czechoslovakia. It is bringing up to date the one of the 24th of June, and you will see that its execution must be assured as from the 1st of October 1938, at the latest, and Copy Number 2 goes to you as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy.
Now, if you will turn over the page to the actual directive, 146 of the English document book, 277 to 278, you see the first sentence of Paragraph 1, "Political Prerequisites":
"It is my unalterable decision to smash Czechoslovakia by military action in the near future. It is the job of the political leaders to await or bring about the politically or militarily suitable moment."
RAEDER: May I ask where it is? I do not seem able to find it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The first sentence in the directive, Paragraph 1, Political Prerequisites-Sentence 1: "It is my unalterable decision to smash Czechoslovakia by military action in the near future."
RAEDER: The numbering is confused here.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am very sorry. Page 277, 278.
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RAEDER: Yes. Now I have found it. What was the date?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE 28th of May 1938, that is approximately six months after the meeting which you had attended at which Hitler had said he would attack Czechoslovakia at the earliest opportunity that he could. Didn't that make you think that Hitler's speech in November was not merely froth but was stating his plans?
RAEDER: No, because he kept on changing his decisions all the summer. He made a fresh decision every month. That can be seen from Document 388-PS. And it was like this, I believe: on 10 September troops began to assemble and on the same day negotiations were started. On 1 October the peaceful occupation of the Sudetenland took place, after the other powers had agreed to that at Munich. After the Munich negotiations...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: We all know that. The point is perfectly clear...
RAEDER: I should like to finish.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: In May, here were the plans, and the Fuehrer had mentioned-in his speeches he had expressed this: that it was his determination at the end of May to smash Czechoslovakia by military action. Are you telling the Tribunal that you read that directive and still took the view that Hitler had not got aggressive intentions? That is the question.
RAEDER: Yes, at the end of May.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Why, what more proof could you want than his own determination to smash it? What clearer proof could you want?
RAEDER: He frequently said that he intended to smash something and then did not do it. The question was peacefully solved then. I should like to add that on 30 May-I believe that was the date-after mobilization had just been carried out in Czechoslovakia, and that had led him to use such stern words then, and from this-I think he was justified in doing so, for this mobilization could only be directed against Germany, and as I said, he changed his opinion at least three or four times in the course of the summer, saying again and again that he would reserve his decision and-or that he did not wish to use military force.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, the Tribunal have gotten the whole of the 388-PS document in mind. I won't argue it. You say that didn't convince you.
When Hitler went into Prague on the 15th of March 1939, did it then occur to you that there might be something in what he said in the interview on the 5th of November 1937 when he occupied
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the Slav part of Bohemia and Moravia and broke his own rule about keeping Germany for the Germans? Did it then occur to you that he might not then have been joking or merely talking froth in November? Did it?
RAEDER: He had issued a directive saying that the aims for that year were:
1) The defense of Germany against outside attack.
2) The settlement of the rest of Czechoslovakia in case she adopted a line of policy hostile to Germany.
I heard nothing at all about his negotiations with Hacha and his decision following them to occupy Czechoslovakia. I only knew that he wanted to take action against Czechoslovakia according to his directive, in case Czechoslovakia should adopt a line of policy hostile to Germany; and according to the propaganda at that period, that actually did occur. I had nothing at all to do with the occupation of Czechoslovakia; nor with the occupation of the Sudeten area, because the only service which we could have rendered in these operations was our small Danube Flotilla which was subordinated to the Army for this purpose so that I had nothing at all to do with it. There were no other military orders.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: It is your answer that even when Hitler went into Prague on the 15th of March 1939, you still thought he had no aggressive intentions? Is that what you want the Tribunal to believe from you? Is that right?
RAEDER: Yes, I ask the Tribunal to do so because I believe that he did not want to fight a war, to conduct a campaign against Czechoslovakia. By means of his political measures with Hacha he succeeded so far that war did not break out.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Oh yes, you heard the Defendant G5ring give his evidence that he told President Hacha that his armed forces would bomb Prague if he didn't agree. If that is not war, it is next door to it, isn't it?
RAEDER: It is very close to it. Yes, a threat.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, let's go further on for another 2 months. If you didn't see it, on March-on the 23rd of May-when you came to the Reich Chancellery there were six high-ranking officers, of which you were one. And Hitler said that he would give you an indoctrination on the political situation. And his indoctrination was that, "We are left with a decision to attack Poland at the first opportunity." When you heard him say that on the 25th of May, did you still think he had no aggressive intentions?
RAEDER: I thought so for a long time after that. Just as Generaloberst Jodl said, since he had solved the Czech problem
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by purely political means, it was to be hoped that he would be able to solve the Polish question also without bloodshed; and I believed that up to the last moment, up to 22 August.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Just take one glance-I shan't keep you long-at Document L-79, which you will find on Page 74, I think it is, of Document Book 10. I am sorry. Page 298 of the German document book. I beg your pardon. I am not going to ask you about the document because the Tribunal has dealt with that. I want you to look at the people who were there-298 in the German document book.
RAEDER: I know the people who were there.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let's look: Lieutenant Colonel Schmundt; he was afterwards General, Hitler's principal adjutant, and killed on the 20th of July, 1944, isn't that right? Then the Defendant Goering, Commander-in-Chief of the Air Force; yourself as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy; Colonel General Von Brauchitsch who was Commander-in-Chief of the Army; General Keitel who was head of the OKW; General Milch who was Goering's Deputy; Halder who was Chief of Staff; Schniewind who was your Chief of Staff; and Jeschonnek who was I think a Chief of Staff or a high...
RAEDER: Chief of the General Staff of the Air Force.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes. And Colonel Warlimont, who was General Jodl's assistant.
Now, what do you think Hitler got these high-ranking generals for, and told them, "We are left with a decision to attack Poland at the first opportunity," if he hadn't any aggressive intentions? What were these people there for if it wasn't to develop a war?
RAEDER: I have already explained that the main purpose of that speech, as may be seen from the last part of it, was to give a purely academic lecture on the conduct of war, and on the basis of that lecture to create a special study staff, a project which the chiefs of the Armed Forces had so far strongly opposed. I also explained at the start that his explanations were at first the most confused that I have ever heard regarding the matter, and that he issued no directives in regard to them but that the last lines read: "The branches of the Wehrmacht determine what will be built. There will be no alteration in the shipbuilding program. The armament programs are to be fixed for 1943 or 1944." When he said that, he could certainly not have intended to solve the Polish question by a war in the near future.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Are you telling the Tribunal that when he said, "We cannot expect a repetition of the Czech affair; further successes cannot be obtained without the shedding
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of blood," you paid no attention to it at all? You are seriously telling the Tribunal that you paid no attention to that?
RAEDER: No, I certainly did not at all, because by this time I was getting to know Hitler and was familiar with the exaggerations contained in his speeches.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: At this time you had already had the directives for a surprise attack on Danzig, in November 1938. You had had the directive on the 3rd of April for the Fall Weiss, and you know this whole matter was en train. Are you seriously, Defendant, telling the Tribunal that you had any doubt after the 23rd of May that Hitler intended war against Poland and was quite prepared to fight England and France, if they carried out their guarantee? I mean, seriously, I give you this chance before we adjourn: Do you say that you had any doubt at all?
RAEDER: Of course; I have surely explained that even in August I was still doubtful. For instance, in estimating this speech, I must compare it, as has already been done here, with the speech which Hitler had made a few weeks earlier at the launching of the Bismarck, where he spoke only of the peace of true justice. Those speeches were decisive for me. I did not base my conclusions on this particular speech which is reproduced in such an extremely confused manner; and that I proved by the fact that during the whole of the summer I never said a word to the Navy to suggest that war might break out in the autumn. Confirmation of that was given here; and anybody can give further confirmation. I thought very highly of Hitler's political ability and even on 22 August, when we were informed of the pact with Russia, I was still convinced that we should again be able to find a peaceful solution of the problem. That was my definite conviction. I may be accused of faulty judgment, but I thought I had formed a correct estimate of Hitler.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, I understand you to say that even on the 22nd of August you didn't think that Hitler had any aggressive intentions. Do you really mean that?
RAEDER: Yes, and there is a perfectly good reason for it, because there was every prospect of our forming an alliance with Russia. He had given all sorts of reasons why England and France would not intervene; and all those who were assembled there drew from that the sincere hope that he would again be successful in getting out of the affair without fighting.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Will this be a convenient time to adjourn, My Lord?
[The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: My Lord, I am most anxious not to take up unnecessary time. With regard to the meeting of the Ad of August, Your Lordship may remember that Dr. Siemers raised a point as to the two accounts of the meeting, one in Documents 1014-PS and 798-PS and the other in the account by Admiral Boehm. I have had a comparison made out in English and German showing the points which are similar to both, and I thought it would be more convenient just to put that in. Let Dr. Siemers see the German copy and make any suggestion at the appropriate time rather than spend any time in cross-examining the witness as to any differences in the accounts. My Lord, with the permission of the Tribunal, I will put that in now and hand Dr. Siemers a copy so that he can draw the Tribunal's attention to any points at a convenient stage.
THE PRESIDENT: Did not Admiral Boehm make the accounts?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: My Lord, the Prosecution's account is in two documents, 798-PS and 1014-PS.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: There was another document which was mentioned by my friend, Mr. Alderman, but not put in. It was an account by a journalist which was the first account the Prosecution had had, but when they got the two accounts from the OKW files, they did not use their first one; so I had only taken the two accounts from the OKW files and Admiral Boehm's account.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes. But does not that make three documents in all, apart from the one which has been left out?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, My Lord, and I have taken each of the two and compared it with Admiral Boehm's.
THE PRESIDENT: Very well.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: So, on that I shall not pursue this interview. I thought that it would save time.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, I'd like you, therefore, Defendant, to look at Document Number 789-PS, which is at Page 261 of Book 10a and Pages 438 to 440 of the German book- 438 to 440. This is the note, Defendant, of a conference on the 23d of November 1939 with Hitler, to which all Supreme Commanders were ordered. Do you see that at the beginning, Pages 438 to 440? Do you see what it says, "to which all Supreme Commanders are ordered"? Were you present?
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RAEDER: Yes, it is the conference during the war on 23 November 1939.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes. Were you present?
RAEDER: I was present.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Who were the other commanders-in-chief who were present?
RAEDER: The commanders-in-chief of the Army, the Air Force, and a considerable number of generals of the Army.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The "Oberbefehlshaber"?
RAEDER: Yes, but in the Army.. .
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes. Now, I want you to look at a passage. The paragraph begins: "One year later, Austria came. This step also was considered very hazardous." Do you see that? Do you see that paragraph?
RAEDER: Yes, I have got it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Much obliged. Now, I just want you to look at the next few sentences.
"It brought about a considerable strengthening of the Reich. The next step was Bohemia, Moravia, and Poland. But this step was not to be accomplished in one move. First of all, the West Wall had to be finished in the West. It was not possible to reach the goal in one bound. It was clear to me from the first moment that I could not be satisfied with the Sudeten-German territory. It was only a partial solution. The decision to march into Bohemia was made. Then followed the establishment of the Protectorate and with that the basis for the conquest of Poland was laid, but I was not yet clear at that time whether I should start first against the East and then against the West or vice-versa. Moltke often had to ponder over the same things in his time. Of necessity it came to a fight with Poland first. I shall be accused of wanting to fight and fight again; in struggle I see the fate of all beings. Nobody can avoid a struggle if he does not want to go under. The increasing population requires a larger living space. My goal was to create a logical relation between the population and the living space."
Whatever you had understood up to that time, you appreciated then, that Hitler himself had had a consistent and clear aim of aggression throughout these matters that I put to you this morning; did you not?
RAEDER: Yes, but now we were already in the middle of a war and he was looking at these things retrospectively. Also, he wanted
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to make it clear to the generals, with whom he had a conflict at that time, that he had always been right in his political conceptions. That is the reason why he quoted all these detailed points again.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now, would you turn over to Pages 445-448, which is Page 264 of the English document book, German document book Pages 445-448. Have you got that?
RAEDER: Perhaps you would be good enough to read, I have here a...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: It is the paragraph that begins: "We have an Achilles heel: The Ruhr."
RAEDER: I have it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you look about halfway down that paragraph. You will see: "England cannot live without its imports. We can feed ourselves. The permanent sowing of mines off the English coasts will bring England to her knees."
Have you got that passage?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Thank you. Now, if you would just listen.
"However, this"-that is bringing England to her knees-"can only occur when we have occupied Belgium and Holland. It is a difficult decision for me. Nobody has ever achieved what I have achieved. My life is of no importance in all this. I have led the German people to a great height, even if the world does hate us now. I am setting this work at stake. I have to choose between victory or destruction. I choose victory, the greatest historical choice-to be compared with the decision of Frederick the Great before the first Silesian War. Prussia owes its rise to the heroism of one man."
And there is some more about Frederick the Great and Bismarck:
"My decision is unchangeable. I shall attack France and England at the most favorable and quickest moment. Violation of the neutrality of Belgium and Holland is unimportant. No one will question that when we have won. We shall not give such idiotic reasons for the violation of neutrality as were given in 1914. If we do not violate the neutrality, then England and France will. Without attack the war is not to be ended victoriously."
Now, do you remember, Defendant, that this was just 3 weeks after the plans for "Fall Gelb," that is plans for the attack on Holland and Belgium, had been issued on 10 November? Do you remember that?
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RAEDER: I know that this was discussed here. But we were already at war with England, therefore at that stage it was no longer necessary to discuss an attack against England and France and . . .
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You were not at war with Holland and Belgium, were you?
RAEDER: Please, I would like to finish.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am sorry, I thought you had finished.
RAEDER: Here it says: "If the French Army marches into Belgium to attack us, then it will be too late for us. We must be first."
Hitler at that time stated that he had received definite news that Belgium would not respect her neutrality and that he also had hews already that certain preparations for the reception of French and British troops et cetera had already been made. For that reason, he wanted to forestall an attack from Belgium against us. Apart from that, in his speech of 22 August 1939, he had made a statement entirely to the opposite effect. He had said that Belgium and Holland would not break their neutrality.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Did you agree with what he said, that the "Violation of the neutrality of Belgium and Holland is unimportant. No one will question that when we have won." Did you agree with that view?
RAEDER: No, it is not exactly my opinion, but I had no cause on my part to raise any objection against that statement of his at that moment.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The view of the Naval War Command was put up to him a month later with regard to U-boat warfare, was it not? Do you remember that on 30th December you had a meeting with Hitler, at which Colonel General Keitel and Fregattenkapitaen Von Puttkamer were present?
RAEDER: Yes, I was with him on 30 December.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I would like you to look at the new document, which is Document Number C-100, Exhibit Number GB-463.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, ought not this document be identified?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Your Lordship, of course, is right. I think we had perhaps better give them two numbers, one for each of the original PS documents. My Lord, the comparison. ..
THE PRESIDENT: 1014-PS has a number already, has it not?
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Yes, My Lord. That has a number.
THE PRESIDENT: I thought perhaps the comparative document ought to have a number.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Certainly. Shall we call one comparison Exhibit Number GB-464, the comparison of Document Number 798-PS; and the comparison of Document Number 1014-PS, Exhibit Number GB-465?
THE PRESIDENT: I have only got one here, as far as I can see.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: My Lord, I am going to get some more done. I am afraid I have passed out only a limited number at the moment, but I will have some more run off.
464, 798; GB-465 will be 1014-PS. It will be the comparison of Document Number 798-PS with the Raeder Document, and Exhibit Number GB-465 will be the comparison of Document Number 1014-PS in the Raeder document book.
I am very much obliged to Your Lordship.
THE PRESIDENT: Now you are going to give us Document Number C-100?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: C-100, My Lord, yes.
Defendant, I will be grateful if you will turn over a few pages to where it comes to a report, the date of 30 December 1939, and then after that there is an enclosure to the report to the Fuehrer of 30 December 1939.
Would you look at Paragraph IV, which says:
"With regard to the form and the moment for the commencement of further intensification of the war at sea, the decision of the supreme war command to begin the general intensification of the war with an offensive in the West is of decisive importance."
Have you got that, Paragraph IV?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am afraid the paging is different.
RAEDER: "With regard to the form"-yes.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: "With regard to the form and the moment for the commencement of further intensification of the war at sea, the decision of the supreme war command to begin the general intensification of the war with an offensive in the West is of decisive importance.
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"I. Possibility: The decision of the Fuehrer is made in favor of a Western offensive, beginning very shortly, within the framework of the instructions issued for this to date, by violating the neutrality of other states:
"In this case the intensified measures for the war at sea will in their political effect only represent a small part of the entire intensification of the war. The gradual change-over to the intensified form of waging the war at sea within the American restricted zone, with the ultimate aim of a ruthless employment of all means of warfare to interrupt all commerce with England, is therefore proposed with the start of the offensive.
"Immediate anticipation of individual intensified measures for the war at sea is not necessary and may be postponed until the start of the general intensification of the war. The benevolent neutrals Italy, Spain, Japan and Russia as well as America, are to be spared as far as possible."
Isn't that right, that you contemplated that Hitler's violation of the neutrality. of the Low Countries would cover, by being a more important matter, your adopting the most ruthless methods of war at sea? Isn't that right?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: What does that mean if it does not mean that? What does that mean if it does not mean what I have put to you?
RAEDER: With the beginning of the offensive in the West, Hitler also wanted a certain more energetic pursuit of the war at sea. For that reason, he asked me to introduce only at this point the intensified measures which I considered already justified because of the attitude of the British forces. These intensifications were very carefully considered in that memorandum, and they followed step by step the different steps taken by Britain.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I will deal with the memorandum. You need not be afraid that I will omit that, but what I am putting to you at the moment is this: That so far from disapproving of the violation of the neutrality of Holland and Belgium, you on behalf of the Navy were quite prepared to accompany it by the intensification of submarine warfare; isn't that right?
RAEDER: That is twisting my words. I had nothing to do with this violation of neutrality for we were not there when they marched into these two countries. The only thing I was interested in was to intensify the submarine war step by step, so as to meet the measures introduced by the British, which also violated international law.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am going to come to submarine warfare, but at the moment I want to try to keep in compartments. There are only two more points on this aggressive war. I am now going to pass-you can leave that document for the moment. I will come back to it, Defendant; you need not be afraid, and I want you to help me on one or two points in Norway.
With regard to Norway, you were quite content to leave Norway neutral, not occupied, so long as you had a protected channel up the Norwegian coast in neutral waters, is that right? That was an important point for you, to have a channel in neutral waters so that not only your ships, but also your submarines, could go up and start out from neutral waters, is that right?
RAEDER: No, I have very clearly explained the origin of the Norwegian campaign in documents. There was the danger that the British might occupy Norway, and information of all sorts indicated that. Of course, if we were forced to occupy the Norwegian coast, then, apart from all the numerous disadvantages which I have explained, we had the advantage that we would gain this or that base for our Atlantic submarines.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE Are you telling the Tribunal that the Navy seriously thought that the British wanted to occupy Norway?
RAEDER: I most certainly thought that. We had so much information about it that I could have no doubt whatever, and it was fully confirmed later on.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I just ask you, then, to look at just one or two typical Navy reports. We won't refer to the document again, but we will start from there, just to get the time.
You remember, on the 13th of March 1940, General Jodl entered in his diary that the Fuehrer was still looking for justification; do you remember that? You remember that, don't you?
RAEDER: I have already explained once that the expression just used, "justification," is wrong, wrongly translated, Jodl wrote "Begruendung," "reason." But that is also wrong-please will you let me finish-even that is incorrect, because the Fuehrer had an abundance of reasons, which he laid down in the instruction issued on the 1st of March, and it was known to all of us. I have said that by the expression "Begruendung," "reason," he probably meant that he had not yet had a diplomatic note compiled. He had not told the Foreign Minister anything about it at that stage. I told you that recently under oath and I repeat it under oath today.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I see. That is the meaning that you have given to it. Well now, will you look at your own Raeder Exhibit Number 81, in Raeder Document Book 5, Page 376.
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RAEDER: May I have Document Book 5?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Oh, you have not got it. I'm sorry. I will get you one.
Now, that is dealing with the first point, encroachment by the English into Norwegian territorial waters, and it says:
"An examination of the question as to whether a mass encroachment by the English into the Norwegian territorial waters was so immediately imminent that it might represent a danger to present German shipping produces the opinion that this is not to be expected at the present time. The ore transports are to be continued, as no losses have yet occurred."
Was that your information, that no mass encroachment of Norwegian territorial waters was to be expected on the 22d of March?
RAEDER: That was not at all my conception. It was the view of Kapitaen zur See Fricke, who was at that time the Chief of the Operations Department. He did not quite agree with me about the whole of this question. He was of the opinion that the British should be allowed to enter Norway first, and then we should throw them out through Sweden, a completely distorted idea which I could not approve of in any way. I had such clear information from Quisling and Hagelin, particularly at that time, the second half of March, that there was no longer any doubt whatever that within a reasonable time the British would intervene on a big scale.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You say that that was Admiral Fricke's view, and you didn't pay attention to it. Well, now, let me look . . .
RAEDER: I did not concern myself with it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You know, Admiral Assmann, whom you have described as a sound historian, kept a headline diary, and on the next day he gives an account of a meeting between you anti Hitler, and he says this. This is the same day. You may have read it, because he turns down your proposal to use U-boats off? Halifax. It is the same day, the 23d of February. Then, at that date, you are quoted as saying that to insure the supply of ore from Narvik, it would be best to preserve the neutrality of Norway.
Then, on the 26th of March, Admiral Assmann in his report of the meeting between you and Hitler records your answers as follows. It is quite short: "British landing in Norway not considered imminent-Raeder suggests action by us at the next new moon-to which Hitler agrees."
That is Admiral Assmann's report of the meeting between you and Hitler on the 26th of March: "British landing in Norway not
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considered imminent-Raeder suggests action by us at the next new moon, the 7th of April-to which Hitler agrees."
Do you remember that?
RAEDER: No. I mean, it is quite improbable that at that moment I should not have been fully convinced of the imminent landing about which the whole of Documents 004-PS and 007-PS gave me reliable information. I did not see the documents, but the information contained in them was fully available.
Admiral Assmann compiled his notes from all sorts of war diaries and records. I most certainly never said that because at that time I reported to Hitler again and again that our preparations which had already been started a time ago would be complete at the end of January, and that that would be the time when the landings had to be carried out for the reasons I always put forward. It is completely wrong to assume that at that time I had the slightest doubt. Later everything was proved right. . .
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now really we must...
RAEDER: And later on, it all turned out to be correct.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: We must get down to this matter. You have told us that Admiral Assmann was a trustworthy officer and good at naval history.
RAEDER: He is not a deceiver, but he compiled the document from all sorts of papers and I cannot imagine how he could have arrived at that statement, I certainly never made it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, but the second part of it, the second sentence, is right, isn't it? "Raeder suggests action by us at the next new moon, the 7th of April."
That is right; that is when you did invade. That was when your armada started off to arrive there on the 9th, wasn't it?
RAEDER: But yes, of course. I was in favor of carrying out the landings in Norway at the earliest possible time, after ice conditions had improved, as we had previously decided and as had been ordered by Hitler. For that I assume full responsibility. There was every reason for that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well. Again I mustn't argue with you, but the point comes to this, that you are saying that Admiral Assmann, who is right in his second sentence, is not only wrong but entirely wrong-I mean, stating the opposite of the truth -when he says that the British landing in Norway was not considered imminent.
Well now, we will just pursue that a little.
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RAEDER: I only submitted to the Fuehrer this matter of landing in Norway on the supposition that this information was available and would continue to be available.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, what was that document of the 26th of March 1940?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That was an extract from the Assmann Diary which I have used before, and I will have one made up and put in for identification. I haven't got it copied yet, My Lord, I am sorry. I shall have it done.
RAEDER: I should be grateful if perhaps you could show me the document. You have shown me all the others, but not this one, the one I contest.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I beg your pardon. It is such a short extract I thought you would take it from me, but the last thing I want is not to show you any documents.
You see the entry for the 26th of March:
"British landing in Norway not considered imminent. Raeder suggests action by us at next new moon, 7th of April, to which Hitler agrees. Further discussions about laying of mines at Scapa before German invasion of Norway. Hitler agrees with Raeder and will issue instructions accordingly."
RAEDER: May I come back to it now. Here it says, the 26th of March 1940: "Occupation of Norway by British was imminent when the Russian-Finnish peace was concluded."
That very Russian-Finnish affair was making it particularly urgent for us to carry out a landing because the danger existed that the British, under the pretext of supporting the Finns, would carry out a bloodless occupation of Norway.
Then I go on to the question of the Fuehrer, whether a landing by the British in Norway might be imminent. One must consider that Assmann had summarized all that from war diaries, and this question is explained by the fact that the Fuehrer wanted to know whether the situation had changed in any way, because the peace had been signed. However, the situation had not changed at all, because we knew in reality that the landings by the British were not to be carried out to help the Finns, but for other reasons. That question, therefore, whether at the time, because of the peace treaty, the British landings might be particularly imminent, was answered by me in the negative. Commander-in-Chief Navy suggests action by us at next new moon, 7th April-Fuehrer agrees. Everything remained as before. Only the question whether because of this peace treaty we ought to land at once, I answered "no." That is completely different from what you have been telling me.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You read out the entry for the 26th of March. What is the entry for the 26th of March? You read it out in German and we can translate it.
RAEDER: "Occupation of Norway by the British was imminent when the Russian-Finnish peace treaty was signed. Apparently, because of the treaty, it was postponed. Question by the Fuehrer, whether at that moment a landing by the British in Norway was imminent, was answered in the negative by the Commander-in-Chief Navy...."
Yes, that did not mean that because of that we had to renounce the idea.
"Commander-in-Chief Navy suggests action by us at next new moon." The reasons for our landing remained the same as before; only the Finnish business could no longer be used by the British.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The peace treaty, the end of the war with Finland, had taken place in the middle of March. That was off the map at that time?
RAEDER: Of course, it was no longer important for us, but our reasons remained as before.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, will you look at Document Number D-843. This will be Exhibit Number GB-466. This is a report from your diplomatic representative in Norway, dated the 29th of March, and at the end of the first paragraph you will see:
"The British apparently did not want to take upon themselves the responsibility for openly violating Norwegian 'territory and Norwegian territorial waters without cause, and for carrying out warlike operations in them."
That is a quotation from the Norwegian Foreign Minister. Then your diplomatic representative takes it up:
"The future will show whether Foreign Minister Koht sees things quite right. It definitely appears, however, as I"- that's the German Foreign Minister's representative-"have frequently pointed out, that the British have no intentions of landing, but that they want to disturb shipping in Norwegian territorial waters perhaps, as Koht thinks, in order to provoke Germany. Of course, it is also possible that the British behavior of last week, which I have pointed out as well, will grow into more or less regular and increasing interference in territorial waters to attack our ore traffic of e the Norwegian coast."
And then Paragraph 3:
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"The firm intention of Norway to maintain her neutrality and to insure that Norway's neutrality rules be respected can be accepted as a fact."
Were you told that your diplomatic representative in Oslo was reporting that the British had no intentions of landing?
RAEDER: Yes. Dr. Breuer, the Minister to Norway, held a completely wrong view. He believed Foreign Minister Koht's assurances even though our naval attache kept reporting that Koht was completely on the side of the British and his assurances were not to be believed. At the same time, information had been received from Hagelin that the Norwegians were giving assurances on paper but they themselves had said that they were doing that only as subterfuge and that they would continue to co-operate with the British. That is contained in the documents which we have submitted.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let us look at another document. Look at Document Number D-844. This is what your diplomatic representative in Sweden was saying at the same time. That will be Exhibit Number GB-467, that is from your representative in Sweden and you will notice that he quotes Foreign Minister Guenther of Sweden, as first of all-about ten lines down, just after the name of "Weizsaecker," you will see:
"The Swedish Government had no reason at all to believe in an impending action by the Western Powers against Scandinavia. On the contrary, on the strength of all official reports and other information, they considered the situation lately to be much calmer."
And then he says there is no prospect of a coup against Swedish ore. Then he goes on to deal with Norway. Without being Anglophile, Guenther did not believe in a British act of war against Norway either, but, of course, he could not speak of this with as much certainty as with regard to Sweden. At any rate, however, the Norwegian Government, with whom he was in close contact, was of the same opinion. And if you look two paragraphs farther on, it says:
"In conclusion, Guenther requested me to report his statements to my government, and repeated that the Swedish Government attached the greatest value to the German Government not erroneously getting the impression of the existence of circumstances which might evoke the possibility -he would not use the word necessity at all-of special measures by Germany with regard to Scandinavia."
And then he says in the last paragraph that the Swedish Foreign Minister had probably heard of the German preparations.
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Now, would you look at Document Number D-845 which will be Exhibit Number GB-468-that is the next day-from your diplomatic representative in Stockholm:
"Serious anxiety exists in Swedish military and government circles regarding possible German military preventive measures in Scandinavia against the announced intensification of war measures by the Western Powers. Swedish and Norwegian military and government authorities consider it unlikely that military measures will be taken against Scandinavia by the Western Powers. Press reports on this subject by the Western Powers are attempting to provoke Germany."
That is from your military attache in Stockholm. Were you told about these reports from Stockholm, were you told of that?
RAEDER: I assume the Fuehrer told me this. But we had no reason at all to believe these assurances because obviously, quite obviously, Sweden had considerable interest in our not going to Norway, because Sweden believed that by so doing we would be able to exercise pressure on Sweden also. That was what the British wanted, according to the information we received later. Our minister was completely misinformed and as a result was not informed by us because it was known that he sided with Foreign Minister Koht. Our information was so clear, so frequent and so unequivocal, that we could certainly carry out our landing with a clear conscience and in fact this proved to be true. Therefore, there is no point in discussing whether the order on the part of the British to land in Norway-it was Trondheim, Stavanger and, I believed, Kristiansand-whether this order was given on 5 ApriL On the 7th, during the night of the 7th to 8th, as the British reported in a wireless message, the mine-laying in Norwegian waters was completed by British ships and on the 7th, troops were shipped on cruisers, the names of which I forget.
Therefore, this actually took place and my conception was correct and not Herr Breuer's who was dismissed immediately after this because he was a failure. Thereupon, we carried out the landings on the strength of quite positive information which we can prove in detail. Sweden's action is thoroughly understandable.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am not going to argue with you although you ought to know and I think you do know that there was no British order for an invasion at all; there was an order for laying mines; but you took this course as I suggested, you, knowing quite well that no British invasion was imminent, contrary to your own Chief of Operations, Captain Fricke, and contrary to all the information from your diplomatic representatives in Norway.
Now, I want to come to another point with regard to Norway and
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then I am finished with that. You told the Tribunal that in your view, using the enemy's colors was a permissible ruse de guerre so long as you stopped before you went into action. Do you remember saying that?
RAEDER: I did not understand.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Do you remember telling the Tribunal that morning that using the enemy's colors on a warship was a permissible ruse de guerre so long as you stopped before you went into action. Do you remember saying that?
RAEDER: Yes; of course, that is the principle which is absolutely recognized in naval warfare, that at the moment of firing you have to raise your own flag.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Are you telling the Tribunal that it is a recognized procedure in naval warfare to use another country's colors in making an attack on a neutral country, an unannounced attack on a neutral country? There was no war between you and Norway and there was no reason for there to be any ruse. You were at peace with Norway. Are you saying that?
RAEDER: It was all a question of pulling down the flag and raising the German flag if we met the British. We did not want to fight with the Norwegians at all. It says somewhere that we should first of all try to effect a peaceful occupation.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Can you give me a precedent even where the German Navy, before this operation, had ever attacked a neutral country with which it was at peace, using enemy colors? You tell me-when you did it before? .
RAEDER: I do not know. I cannot tell you whether any other navy did it. I have. . .
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You can assume any other navy-I even ask-have you ever done it?
RAEDER: No, we have not done it and apart from that, we did not do it because on 8 April, we gave the order by wireless-and you know from our War Diary-that this should not be done, so it is quite useless to talk here about what might have been done if it has not been done.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I wanted to get clear on what your views on the permissibility of naval warfare were. I want to come to one other point, and then I am finished with this section of the case. With regard to the attack on the Soviet Union, I am not going to ask you about all your own views and what you said to Hitler, because you told us that at length; but I would just like you to look at Document Book 10a, Page 252 of the English book and Page 424 of the German book.
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RAEDER: Which document is it, please?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: The big one.
RAEDER: I have not got that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Document Number 447-PS.
I am so sorry, My Lord, this is entirely my fault. I beg the Tribunal's pardon. I have given the wrong reference. I really wanted him to look at Page 59 in Document Book 10, Document Number C-170. I am very sorry, My Lord.
[Turning to the defendant.] Now, that is the extract from the Naval War Diary, the one that I want you to look at is on Page 59, for the 15th of June. "On the proposal of the Naval Operations Stan (SKL) the use of arms against Russian submarines south of the northern boundary of Oeland warning area..."
Have you got it?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: ". . . is permitted immediately, and ruthless destruction is to be aimed at."
Now, would you mind, before I ask you a question, turning back to Document Number C-38, which is on Page 11, which is Page 19 of your own document book, German document book, Document Number C-38; Page 11 of the British document book, and Page 19 of the German. That is an order of the same date, signed by Defendant Keitel, to the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy.
"Offensive action against submarines south of the line Memel to the southern tip of Oeland is authorized if the boats cannot be definitely identified as Swedish during the approach by German naval forces. The reason to be given up to 'B' Day"- that is Barbarossa-"is that our naval forces are believed to be dealing with penetrating British submarines."
Why did you suggest that you should attack the Soviet submarines 6 days before your own invasion when they wouldn't be expecting any attack and there was no question of any war?
RAEDER: As it has already been explained once here, it had happened just before, that is before the 15th of June, that a submarine had penetrated into the area of Bornholm, which is a long way to the west, and then had given wrong recognition signals when the patrol boat near Bornholm called it. If the wrong recognition signals are given, then it means that it could not be a German submarine but it must be a foreign one. In this case, the course of the ship and the location would bring us to the conclusion that it must be a Russian boat. Apart from that, Russian submarines at that time had repeatedly been located and reported off German ports-Memel, for instance, and others. Consequently, we had the
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impression that Russian submarines were already occupying positions outside German ports, either to lay mines or to attack merchant or warships. For that reason, as a precaution, I had to report this and I had to propose that we should take action against non-German submarines in these areas outside German ports. That suggestion was passed on the same day and this additional statement was made, which, in my opinion, was not necessary at all, but which prevented complications from arising.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is still not an answer to my question. I will put it this way. You considered it right to attack and urge the ruthless destruction of Soviet submarines 6 days before you attacked the Soviet Union? You consider that right? And then, to blame it on penetrating British submarines-this is Keitel's suggestion-is that your view of proper warfare?
RAEDER: Well, I consider the first point right because it is always important to get in before one's opponent, and this was happening under certain definite conditions. The second point was ordered by the Fuehrer. Neither of the two points was ever carried out, and therefore it is useless, in my opinion, to discuss this matter.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is something for the Tribunal, and I will decide what is useful to discuss.
Do I take it, then, that you entirely approve of attacking Soviet submarines and ruthlessly destroying them 6 days before you start the war? That is what the Tribunal is to understand, is it?
RAEDER: Yes, if they appeared in our waters to reconnoiter or to carry out some other war action, then I considered it right. I considered that better than that our ships should run into Russian mines.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, let us just come, for a short time, to your views on U-boat warfare. Do you remember the document which I put to the Defendant Doenitz about the memorandum of the Foreign Office, Document Number D-851, which became Exhibit Number GB-451?
RAEDER: I have it before me.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Right. Well, I will ask about that in a moment. This is what you said about it when you were answering Dr. Kranzbuehler, I think on Saturday. You said:
"Since the war against England came as a complete surprise to us, we had up until then dealt very little with detailed questions of submarine warfare. Among other things, we had not yet discussed the question of so-called unrestricted submarine warfare which had played such a very important part in the previous war. And from that fact it developed that on 3 September, that officer who was recently mentioned here
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was sent to the Foreign Office with some points for discussion on the question of unrestricted submarine warfare, so that we could clarify with the Foreign Office the question as to how far we could go."
Now, do you think that is. . .
RAEDER: So far as I can recollect, that is the way it happened. Unrestricted warfare had not been considered.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Have you got the document in front of you?
RAEDER: You mean the one regarding the Foreign Office, Document Number D-851?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Doenitz 851, yes.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I don't think this is in any copy, My Lord. Has Your Lordship a copy?
THE PRESIDENT: No, I don't think so.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: My Lord, I did put it in when I was cross-examining the Defendant Doenitz.
THE PRESIDENT: It is very likely with our Doenitz papers.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Perhaps Your Lordship will allow me to just read it slowly, for the moment. The document says this:
"The question of an unrestricted U-boat warfare against England is discussed in the enclosed data submitted by the High Command of the Navy.
"The Navy has arrived at the conclusion that the maximum damage to England which can be achieved with the forces available can only be attained if the U-boats are permitted an unrestricted use of arms without warning against enemy and neutral shipping in the prohibited area indicated on the enclosed map. The Navy does not fail to realize that:
"(a) Germany would thereby publicly disregard the agreement of 1936 regarding the conduct of economic war.
"(b) Conduct of the war on these lines could not be justified on the basis of the hitherto generally accepted principles of international law."
Then, I ought to read this, or point it out. I have dealt with it before, it is the second last paragraph:
"Points of view based on foreign politics would favor using the method of unrestricted U-boat warfare only if England
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gives us a justification by her method of waging war to order this form of warfare as a reprisal."
[Turning to the defendant.] Now, I want you to take it by stages. You see the paragraph that says:
"The Navy has arrived at the conclusion that the maximum damage to England which can be achieved with the forces available can only be attained if U-boats are permitted an unrestricted use of arms without warning in the area...."
Is that your view? Was that your view on the 3d of September?
RAEDER: No, it is not my view; it is a conditional view. We had given submarines the order to wage economic war according to the Prize Ordinance, and we had provided in our War Diary that if the British were to arm merchant ships or something like that, then certain intensifications...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Will you please give me an answer to the question I asked you? It is a perfectly easy question.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, isn't it your view?
RAEDER: In theory, of course, considering the small resources that we had, the greatest possible damage to England could only be achieved through-we had to discuss with the Foreign Office just how far we could go with this intensification. For this reason, this officer was sent there. The discussions with the Foreign Office resulted in the submarine memorandum which shows, from beginning to end, that we were trying to adhere to the existing law as far as possible: The whole memorandum is nothing more than just that sort of discussion.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, will you answer my question? When this document says "the Navy has arrived at the conclusion," is it true that the Navy had arrived at that conclusion?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Is that true or not?
RAEDER: But of course, everybody would arrive at that conclusion.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: It is much easier to say "yes" than to give a long explanation.
Now, let us come to another point. Is it true that you had arrived at that conclusion without consulting the Flag Officer, U-boats, as the Defendant Doenitz said when he gave evidence?
RAEDER: Regarding these matters? We only agreed before the submarines put to sea that they should wage war according to the Prize Ordinance. I did not ask him whether he wanted to carry out
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unrestricted U-boat warfare, because I did not want that. First of all I had to discuss it with the Foreign Office to find out how far we could go. That was the purpose of this affair, which was to give individual orders, such orders which we were entitled to give, step by step, in accordance with the behavior of the British. This was a question of international law, which I had to discuss with the expert on international law in the Foreign Office.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Isn't it correct that you continued to press this point of view, the conclusion of which you had arrived at, with the Foreign Office for the next 3 months? Isn't it correct that you continued to press for an unrestricted U-boat warfare within the area for the next 3 months?
RAEDER: I hardly think so; otherwise I would not have issued the memorandum of 3 September. Maybe we did go to the Foreign Office and put on pressure, but what we did is contained in the memorandum and our measures were intensified step by step, following steps taken by the British.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, the next step with the Foreign Office was a conference with Baron Von Weizsaecker, on the 25th of September, which you will see in Document Number D-852, Exhibit Number GB-469. You see Paragraph 3 of that document:
"The High Command of the Navy will submit to the Foreign Office a proposal, as a basis for a communication to the neutral powers, in which those intensifications of naval warfare will be communicated, the ordering of which has already ' taken place or is impending in the near future. This includes, particularly, a warning not to use wireless on being stopped, not to sail in convoy, and not to black-out."
That was your first step, was it not? That was put up to the Foreign Office, with a number of other proposals?
RAEDER: Of course! The first measure was that armed merchant ships could be attacked because as early as G or 8 September, a submarine had stopped a merchant ship, the Manar, had fired a warning shot, and had at once been fired on by the British steamer. Thereupon the submarine started firing at the merchant ship. Such cases were known. And since one cannot recognize in every case whether the ship is armed or not, we assumed that it would lead to all ships being fired at. However, at that time it was ordered that only armed British merchant ships should be fired at. Secondly, that ships which sent a wireless message when stopped could also be shot at, because this use of wireless which was done by order of the Admiralty would immediately bring to the spot both naval and air forces, especially the latter which would shoot at the U-boat.
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The first step, therefore, was firing on armed merchant ships-the passenger steamers were still excepted-and secondly, firing on blacked-out vessels and firing on those who made use of wireless. Blacked-out vessels are...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now would you look at Document Number D-853. I only want you to look at the next document, which will be Exhibit Number GB-470. I want you to come as soon as possible to this memorandum of which you talked.
D-853, if you will look at Section II, is a report by the Under Secretary of State of the Foreign Office, dated the 27th of September, which goes through these matters which you talked about just now, the sinking at sight of French and British ships, under the assumption that they are armed. In Paragraph II it is said:
"The Naval Operations Staff indicated anew that the Fuehrer will probably order ruthless U-boat warfare in the restricted area in the very near future. The previous participation of the Foreign Office remains guaranteed."
Were you still pressing for absolutely unrestricted warfare within a large area to the west of Britain and around Britain?
RAEDER: Yes. Insofar as we took intensification actions step by step on the basis of our observations regarding the attitude of enemy forces, and that is in those cases where intensification was perfectly justified and was legally proved.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you look at Baron Weizsaecker's minutes of the 14th of October which is Document Number D-857, which will be Exhibit Number GB-471.
Now, you see, this is after these measures have been taken, which you have just explained to the Tribunal. Baron von Weizsaecker reports to the Defendant Von Ribbentrop:
"According to my information, the decision on unrestricted U-boat warfare against England is imminent. This is at least as much a political decision as it is a technicality of war. "A short while ago I submitted my personal view in writing, that unrestricted U-boat warfare would bring new enemies upon us at a time when we still lack the necessary U-boats to defeat England. On the other hand, the Navy's attitude of insisting on the opening of unrestricted U-boat warfare is backed by every convincing reason."
Then he says that it is necessary to ask for certain information. On that you put in-on that point you put in your memorandum of the 15th of October, which, My Lord, is Document Number C-157, and Exhibit Number GB-224.
RAEDER: First of all, may I say something about the previous document? This expression "unrestricted U-boat warfare . . ."
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You can do it later on, because we have got a lot of ground to cover here.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, the Tribunal thinks he ought to be allowed to say what he wants to say on that document.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I am sorry, My Lord, if Your Lordship pleases. Please go on, Defendant, my fault.
RAEDER: Now the two documents are gone. What I wanted to say was that the expression "unrestricted submarine warfare" on the part of the Foreign Office originated from the previous World War. In reality, and during the entire war, we did not wage unrestricted U-boat war in the sense of the unrestricted submarine warfare of the first World War. Even there, where he says "unrestricted submarine warfare might be imminent"-are only ordered very restricted measures, which always were based an the fact that the British had ordered something on their part. The chief action on the part of the British was that of militarizing the entire merchant fleet to a certain extent. That is to say, the merchant fleet was being armed, and they received the order to use these arms.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I don't see how that arises out of the last document at all. Unless the Tribunal wants to go into it, I think we might pass on.
Doesn't Your Lordship think so?
RAEDER: Out of both documents. Not out of one only...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You have put that point, I should think, at least seven times this afternoon. I am going to suggest to you that your real object of the submarine war was set out in the first paragraph of the memorandum. Would you just look at it? You see "Berlin, 15 October..."
RAEDER: No, I must still say that there was not any unrestricted U-boat warfare but merely an intensification of measures, step by step, as I have repeatedly said, and these were always taken only after the British took some measure. The British. . .
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I suggest that that is an entire untruth, and that I will show you out of this document. Look at your own document, this memorandum. In the first paragraph:
"The Fuehrer's proposal for the restoration..."
RAEDER: I am not telling untruths, I would not think of doing it. I do not do that sort of thing.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, that is what I am suggesting to you, and I will show it out of this document.
"The Fuehrer's proposal for the restoration of a just, honorable peace and the new adjustment of the political order in Central
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Europe had been turned down. The enemy powers want the war, with the aim of destroying Germany. In this fight, in which Germany is now forced to defend her existence and her rights, she must use her weapons with the utmost ruthlessness, at the same time fully respecting the laws of military ethics."
Now, let's see what you were suggesting.
"Germany's principal enemy in this war is Britain. Her most vulnerable spot is her maritime trade. The war at sea against Britain must therefore be conducted as an economic war, with the aim of destroying Britain's fighting spirit within the shortest possible time and forcing her to accept peace."
Now, miss one paragraph and look at the next.
"The principal target of our naval strategy is the merchant ship"-now, let's look-"not only the enemy's, but in general every merchant ship sails the seas in order to supply the enemy's war industry, both by way of imports and exports. Side by side with this the enemy warship also remains an objective."
Now, wasn't that the object which you in the Naval Command were putting up to Hitler and to the Foreign Office, to use utmost ruthlessness to destroy Britain's fighting spirit, and to attack every merchant ship coming in or going out of Britain? Wasn't that your object?
RAEDER: Of course, but attacks on neutrals only insofar as they were warned and advised not to enter certain zones. Throughout the centuries in economic warfare the enemy merchant ship as well as the neutral merchant ship has been the object of attack.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You are not telling the Tribunal that you were suggesting use of warnings. Are you seriously suggesting to the Tribunal that what you meant by that paragraph was that neutral ships were only to be attacked with warning?
RAEDER: Of course, and that happened. Afterwards we issued the warning to neutral ships, after our blockade zone was established in accordance with the American blockade zone. We warned them that they should not enter this zone because they would run into most serious danger. That I am saying, and I can prove it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I suggest to you that that is untrue, and I will show it out of the document. Now, just turn to page...
RAEDER: On 24 November that warning was issued.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: If you will turn to Section C of the document, "Military requirements for the decisive struggle against Great Britain."
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"Our naval strategy will have to employ tq the utmost advantage every weapon at our disposal. Military success can be most confidently expected if we attack British sea communications where they are accessible to us with the greatest ruthlessness; the final aim of such attacks is to cut off all imports into and exports from Britain. We should try to consider the interest of neutrals, insofar as this is possible without detriment to military requirements. It is desirable to base all military measures taken on existing international law; however, measures which are considered necessary from a military point of view, provided a decisive success can be expected from them, will have to be carried out, even if they are not covered by existing international law."
Wasn't that the view you were putting up to the Foreign Office and the Fuehrer, "Use international law as long as you can, but if international law conflicts with what is necessary for military success, throw international law overboard." Wasn't that your view?
RAEDER: No, that is quite incorrectly expressed.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, then explain these words. Explain these words:
"We should try to consider the interest of neutrals insofar as this is possible without detriment to military requirements. However, measures which are considered necessary from a military point of view, provided a decisive success can be expected from them, will have to be carried out even if they are not covered by international law."
What did you mean by that if you didn't mean to throw international law overboard?
RAEDER: It says "If the existing rules of land warfare cannot be applied to them." It is generally known that international law had not yet been co-ordinated with submarine warfare, just as the use of aircraft at that time. It says:
"In principle, therefore, any means of warfare which is effective in breaking enemy resistance should be based on some legal conception, even if that entails the creation of a new code of naval warfare"-that is, a new code of naval warfare on the basis of actual developments.
Throughout the war a new code of naval warfare was developing, starting with the neutrals themselves. For instance, the Pan-American Security Conference defined a safety zone 300 miles around the American coast, thereby barring a tremendous sea area for overseas trade.
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Likewise, the United States fixed a fighting zone around the British Isles which was not at all to our liking, and on 4 November 1939, the United States themselves maintained that it would be extremely dangerous for neutral ships to enter it, and they prohibited their own ships and their own citizens to enter this area.
We followed that up by asking the neutrals that they too should proceed in the same way as the United States, and then they would not be harmed. Then only those neutrals sailed to Great Britain which had contraband on board and made a lot of money out of it, or which were forced by the British through their ports of control to enter that area and nevertheless submit themselves to those dangers. Of course, they were quite free to discontinue doing that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now tell me, what changes had taken place in the development of either airplanes or submarines from the time that Germany signed the Submarine Protocol of 1936 to the beginning of the war? You say that international law had to adapt itself to changes in weapons of war. What changes had taken place between 1936 and 1939?
RAEDER: The following changes took place: The Submarine Protocol of 1936 was signed by us because we assumed that it concerned peaceful actions...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is not an answer to my question. My question is quite clear. It is: What changes in weapons of war, either in the air or in the submarines, had taken place between 1936 and 1939? Now, there is a question. You are a naval officer of 50 years' experience. Tell me, what were the changes?
RAEDER: It turned out that because of the airplane the submarine was no longer in a position to surface and to investigate enemy ships or any other merchant ships, particularly near the enemy coast where the U-boats carried on their activities at first. There was no regulation at all issued about airplanes.
THE PRESIDENT: Defendant, that is not an answer to the question. The question you were asked was, what changes had taken place in the weapons of war, either airplanes or submarines.
RAEDER: But Mr. President, the changes took place in the airplane. The ever increasing efficiency of the airplanes and the extension of their activities also over the seas led to the situation where it became impossible to examine any merchant vessel without aircraft being called to threaten the submarine. That got worse and worse, so that later on even rescuing had to be restricted because of enemy aircraft, and the entire submarine warfare was completely turned upside down in that manner.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Is that the only change that you can say in order to justify your statement that international law
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was to be thrown overboard where it didn't fit in with military necessities? Is that the only change, the increase in the power of aircraft between 1936 and 1939?
RAEDER: I have already said once it was not thrown overboard. It was to be limited and changed and that was done by others too.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now would you just look at the next paragraph. You talked about your consideration for neutrals. At the top of Page 5 in the English text; it is the paragraph that follows the one that I have just read. You say:
"In principle, therefore, any means of warfare which is effective in breaking enemy resistance should be based on some legal conception, even if that entails the creation of a new code of naval warfare.
"The Supreme War Command, after considering the political, military and economic consequences within the framework of the general conduct of the war, will have to decide what measures of a military nature are to be taken, and what our attitude to the usage of war is to be. Once it has been decided to conduct economic warfare in its most ruthless form, in fulfillment of military requirements, this decision is definitely to be adhered to under all circumstances. On no account may such a decision for the most ruthless form of economic warfare, once it has been made, be dropped or subsequently relaxed under political pressure from neutral powers, as took place in the World War to our own detriment. Every protest by neutral powers must be turned down. Even threats from other countries, especially the United States, to come into the war, which can be expected with certainty should the war last a long time, must not lead to a relaxation in the form of economic warfare once embarked upon. The more ruthlessly economic warfare is waged, the earlier will it show results and the sooner will the war come to an end."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Do you now agree with that suggestion and that point of view expressed in the paragraph which I have just read to you?
RAEDER: It has to be understood quite differently from the way you are trying to present it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Quite differently from what it says . . .
RAEDER: No, not what it says. This is the point. We had the experience during the first World War that, as soon as the order for intensification had been given and communicated, as soon as the first
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neutral had raised a finger to object, these measures were immediately cancelled, particularly when the United States had a hand in it. And here I am saying that under all circumstances it must be avoided that we always withdraw our measures at once; and I give a warning to the effect that we should consider our measures as carefully as possible. That is the reason for the discussion with the Foreign Office and others, namely, to avoid the situation where later on they might be withdrawn, which would mean a considerable loss of prestige and the results would not be achieved.
That is the reason. Numerous protests were received by Britain too, and in most cases they were unanswered. I can quote from the Document Number C-170, Exhibit Number USA-136, where there are a lot of figures, Number 14, where it says: "Sharp Russian note against the British blockade warfare on 20 October 1939;" and Number 17, on 31 October, where it states: "Political Speech of Molotov."
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: All that I ask is, was that a proper procedure?
RAEDER: I must give an explanation on that matter, and I was just about to do that. Sharp attacks on the British blockade, in violation of international law-these attacks were made by M. Molotov. Here too, protests were made which were turned down. But I wanted to prevent protests and the entire document shows that our deliberations always aimed at taking measures in such a way that they could not be objected to, but were always legally justified.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, will you tell me, Defendant, how it was going to prevent protests if you suggest in this paragraph to use the most ruthless measures and disregard every protest that neutrals made? How is that going to prevent protests?
RAEDER: These measures were to be taken in such a way that no objection was possible. If I tell the neutrals: "This is a dangerous area in every way," and nevertheless they go there because they want to make money or because they are being forced by the British, then I need not accept any protest. They are acting for egotistical reasons, and they must pay the bill if they die. I must also add...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is true. They must pay the bill if they die. That was what it came to, was it not?
RAEDER: They received large premiums for exposing themselves to that risk, and it was their business to decide about it.
THE PRESIDENT: Sir David, we might break off now for 10 minutes.
[A recess was taken.]
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THE PRESIDENT: Are you going to be much longer, Sir David?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I thought about half an hour, My Lord.
[Turning to the defendant.] Defendant, in this document the Naval Command suggests that it calls for a siege of England, that is, the sinking without warning of all ships that come into a big area around England.
Didn't you hear? Sorry. In this document the Naval Command suggests what is called the siege of England, on Pages 10 to 13. And that is, the sinking of all merchant ships, including neutrals and tankers, which come into an area around England. Isn't that so?
RAEDER: No, that is not true. The Navy Command does not suggest that, but discusses the idea of a siege after the blockade had been discussed and rejected. It likewise comes to a conclusion why the siege, which until that time had not been accepted as a recognized idea by international law, should not be undertaken; and it draws the inference from all these discussions by setting out on the last page, the last page but one, what shall now be considered the final conclusion. These are only those measures which can be justified by the actions already taken by the British. And during the entire discussion about blockading, the consideration was always in the foreground as to whether the neutrals would not suffer too much damage by that. And the whole idea of a siege is based on the fact that Prime Minister Chamberlain had already said-on 26 September-that there would not be any difference between a blockade on the seas and a siege on land, and the commander of a land siege would try to prevent with all means the entry of anything into the fortress. Also, the French press had mentioned that Germany was in the same situation as a fortress under siege.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: What I am suggesting is that you come down in favor of a siege, but you do not want any siege area declared. Will you look at Paragraph 2 of the conclusions, and then I will leave the document to the Tribunal. That is the point I suggest. In paragraph 2 of the conclusions you say:
"For the future conduct of economic war, the basic military requirements demand the utmost ruthlessness. The employment of the siege by sea as the most intensified form of economic warfare meets this demand. Even without the public announcement of a state of siege, after it has been clearly defined as a concept, a declaration which would have drawbacks militarily and from the point of view of international law, and even without the declaration of a prohibited zone,
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it seems perfectly possible at the moment, as has been explained in this memorandum, to take military measures to introduce the most intensive form of economic warfare, and to achieve what are at present the greatest possible results in the interruption of enemy trade"-now the last words- "without the Naval Operations Staff being tied in all cases to special forms and areas."
That is your final conclusion, that you should have as effective a siege as possible without proclaiming any area. Isn't that so?
RAEDER: No, that is not the conclusion. The conclusion is that we cannot carry out a siege, and that it would be a matter for the political leadership of the State to decide. The political leadership of the State has never suggested to decree a siege, and it can be seen here quite clearly what, on the basis of the memorandum, is suggested for the time being, and then how the intensification gradually took place.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: We must not take time arguing about it, I want you to make clear...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Let me finish. My suggestion to you is-and there I leave it-that you rejected a formal siege, but you claimed the right to sink at sight, without warning, all neutral vessels in an area which the High Command may choose.
Now, I want to pass on to another subject, because I am afraid time is getting on.
RAEDER: That is no siege, however. That was a directive issued after neutral ships did not heed our warning and continued to enter the sea around Britain in order to support Britain in the economic warfare which she, with the greatest ruthlessness and severity, was conducting against us. It was a measure of self-defense.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: I put it that the document speaks for itself, now that the attention of the Tribunal has been drawn to it. I want to come to another point. You have mentioned certain matters, in answer to Dr. Morn this morning, with regard to the treatment of American ships in the summer of 1941. In April 1941 you were pressing for German naval forces to operate freely up to three miles of the American coast instead of the 300-mile safety limit which the Americans were suggesting, were you not? Well to save time I will give the witness Document Number D-849, Exhibit Number GB-472.
[The document was handed to the defendant.]
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That says you couldn't get in touch with the Defendant Von Ribbentrop and therefore you asked Baron Von Weizsaecker to get a decision on these points:
"1) Authorization for the German naval forces in the western part of the Atlantic Ocean to operate freely as far as the international customary 3-mile boundary.
"2) The cancellation of the preferential treatment which American merchant vessels have been enjoying so far in our warfare at sea."
Now, I hand you Document Number 850, that will be Exhibit Number GB-473. Your suggestion, which had been made in April, was turned down by Hitler in June. It is a memorandum from Ritter in the Foreign Office and it reads:
"General Jodl informs me that at the recent report of Grossadmiral Raeder to the Fuehrer, the more far-reaching orders to the naval forces, as they were discussed in connection with the Raeder interview, have been postponed until further notice.
"In the same way, permission to attack United States' merchant vessels within the framework of the prize law has not been granted."
Your suggestion was to abandon the policy then existing and attack up to the 3-mile limit. Now, I want you to come to another point . . .
RAEDER: No, please may I make a statement concerning that? I should like to say something, even if you do not put a question to me. It is not right.
At that time, in March 1941, and on the 1st of April and the following dates in 1941, a whole number of intensifications were introduced by the United States, which I mentioned this morning, from the document which I had before me. Therefore, it was clear that I, on behalf of the Naval Operations Staff, which was supposed to conduct the most effective naval war, urged that also with respect to the United States those steps should be taken which were permissible according to international law, and that we should start slowly. Those steps included:
First: that we should no longer respect that 300-mile limit, but go as far as the 3-mile limit, where according to existing international law, it was possible to attack. That is to say, not against international law, but it was just discontinuing certain favorable conditions which we had granted the United States. And Point 2: The cancellation of the preferential treatment...
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That's exactly what I suggest to you. There is no dispute between us. I was just establishing that point.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, I want you to come. . .
RAEDER: I only wanted to say that during the hearing of Grossadmiral Doenitz the Prosecution demanded of us that we should not treat certain neutrals better than others, but we should treat them all alike; that is to say in plain language, we must sink them all, no matter whether we wanted to do so or not, and of course we were not bound to do that. The second thing: it was a matter of course that a thoroughly justified suggestion on my part from the point of view of the Naval Operations Staff had been rejected by the Fuehrer if, with regard to the political situation, he decided that at that time he did not desire to adopt a more severe attitude towards the United States.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: Now, I want you to come to quite a different point. Do you say that you did not know anything about the extermination of Jews in the Eastern Territories?
[There was no response.]
Do you say that you did not know about the extermination of Jews in the Eastern Territories?
RAEDER: I say clearly under oath that I had not the slightest inkling about it. I might add in explanation that on no account would Hitler have spoken about such things to a man like myself, whose opinion he knew, especially because he was afraid that on my part there would be very serious objections. I explained the other day why I used the word "Jews" in my memorial speech. In my opinion, I was obliged to do so. But that had nothing at al, to do with an extermination of Jews. About the Jewish matter I have only learned...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well...
RAEDER: Excuse me, please, one moment. I only learned something about the Jewish matter when Jews who were known to me, mostly friends of my old parents, approached me and told me that they were about to be evacuated from Berlin. And then I intervened for them. That was the only thing I knew. On occasions I was told in answer to my questions that they were to be evacuated to cities where ghettos had been established. I always understood that a ghetto was a district in a city where all the Jews lived together, so that they would not have to mingle with the rest of the population.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Welt you know, my question was only: Did you know or did you not, and you could have answered that yes or no. I want you now to answer about that point . . .
RAEDER: Yes, but I must-so many questions have been asked about this very point and as every man in my position who held the same views says the same, that he does not know anything about it, I should like to explain once for all that one did not hear about these things, because civilians certainly did not talk to us about that, because they were always afraid that they would get into difficulties. The Fuehrer did not speak about it. I had no connection with Himmler nor with other agents of the Gestapo. I did not know anything about it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well now, I want you just to tell the Tribunal your chain of command for the Baltic coast. Is this right that you had the naval chief command, and then the Flag Officer of the East Baltic coast Tallinn and, under him, you had a command at Libau; is that right? Was that your chain of command?
RAEDER: I did not understand that.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Was your chain of command for the East Baltic coast, Kiel, Flag Officer Tallinn, and a detachment under him at Libau? You had...
RAEDER: I assume so-that depends on various things. If they were operational matters, then it had to do with the Naval Group Commander East or North; and as far as matters of organization were concerned, then it might have gone through the Station Chief of the Baltic Sea.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL- Yew: Well, then, at any rate, you had got in 1941 a naval command at Libau, had you not?
RAEDER: Yes, of course.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now, I would like you just to look at Document Number D-841, which is a deposition on oath by one of the naval employees at Libau.
My Lord, that will be Exhibit Number GB-474.
This witness says: "Deposition on oath of Walter Kurt Dittmann."
And then it says:
"I was Naval Administration Inspector and officer in charge of the Naval Clothing Depot at Libau in Latvia.
"I held this position from the beginning of August 1941 to the end of March 1942.
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"The Jewish population of Libau at that time was supposed to be about 7,000 people.
"Up to the end of March 1942 many thousands of them had already been 'evacuated' by the Gestapo and the Latvian Police.
" 'Evacuated' was the local expression for the annihilation of these people.
"All Jews were registered. When a new lot was to be evacuated it happened in the following way:
"The Latvian Police fetched the Jews out of their houses, put them on lorries and drove them to the Naval Port about six to seven kilometers outside the town. Later on these people had to march and were not taken there in lorries.
"In the Naval Port these people were then shot with machine guns. This was done by the Gestapo and the Latvian Police. The police, of course, got their orders from the German Gestapo.
"I personally did not witness these incidents, but comrades told me all about them.
"Some of the Jews before they were shot worked for the Navy.
"About 80-100 people worked in the Clothing Depot every day.
"About 100-150 people worked in the Garrison Administration every day.
"About 50 people worked in the Garrison Building Office (Navy) every day.
"Through these contacts and through personal visits to the houses of Jews I heard a lot regarding the terrible happenings in Libau during these months.
"I personally went to my superior, Festungs-Intendant Dr. Lancelle, and before that I also went to another superior, the officer in charge of the Hospital Administration, named Mueller, both were Naval Administration Officials. I pointed out to them these abuses which have already been described. The answer I got was that they could not do anything and that things like that were best overlooked.
"The Marineverwaltungsassistent Kurt Traunecker accompanied a consignment of clothing from Kiel to Libau. He stayed a few weeks in Libau and he expressed his displeasure at the conditions there regarding the annihilation of the Jews.
"He then went back to Kiel to the local clothing office. There again he expressed his displeasure and was ordered to appear
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at the Naval Administration Headquarters (Marine-Intendantur). Whom he saw there, I do not know, but it was made clear to him that these occurrences were not true, and therefore he should not talk about them any more, otherwise he would get into most serious trouble. "My personal opinion is that the higher offices of the Navy in Kiel and in other places in Germany must have had knowledge of these terrible conditions."
Are you saying, Defendant, that with your naval detachments on the East coast of the Baltic and with these things happening, that nobody reported to you that the Jews were being slaughtered by the thousands in the Eastern Territories, you are still saying it?
RAEDER: Yes, I knew nothing about it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: What was your staff doing, if they were not telling you about this? Had you an efficient staff? Do you say you had an efficient staff?
RAEDER: That is a question which is not relevant here. Of course I had only efficient officers around me. But here we are dealing with things which were not done at all by the Navy. It says here in all places that it was the police and so on. I even was in Libau once and I was told-and this is the only thing in connection with this matter-that the peculiar thing was that the Jews in Libau, contrary to their custom, were craftsmen and therefore they were doing useful work there. That was the only thing I heard about it. As regards any extermination...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: When were you in Libau?
RAEDER: I cannot say that now. It was after it was occupied' probably immediately afterwards.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Were you there in 1941 or 1942?
RAEDER: I said just now that I do not know exactly when; I have to look it up somewhere. It does not say here that anything was reported, only that it was apparently discussed in the Navy Headquarters and with the Navy Quartermaster (Marine-Intendantur), who does not report to me. Of course I would have intervened if I had heard about such happenings.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You think you would? Well, I'll leave that. Now, tell me about the Commando Order of the 18th of October 1942. You received Hitler's Commando Order and passed it on to your various divisions of the Navy, did you not?
RAEDER: Yes, I passed it on through the Naval Operations Staff.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Did you approve of it?
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RAEDER: I did not recommend it, but I passed it on. I have to make a statement if you want to know what I thought about it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, that's not what I'm asking you. I'm asking you-first answer my question-did you approve of an order to shoot Commandos or to hand them over to the SD to be shot, did you?
RAEDER: I did not recommend the order, but I received it as drafted by the Fuehrer, and as it came into my hands, T passed it on as ordered with the same remark as to how far it has to be passed on and how it has to be returned. It was all ordered by Hitler in detail. It was decisive for me that in one of the first paragraphs the reason for this order was given, and the reasons why Hitler considered a deviation from international law justified. Moreover, a short time before I had been in Dieppe in France, and there I was informed that on the occasion of the Commando action of the British in France, the prisoners, I believe they were from the Labor Service, who were working along the coast, had been shackled with a noose around their neck and the other end of the noose around the bent-back lower leg, so that when the leg weakened, the noose tightened and the man choked.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, now, will you answer my question: Did you approve of the order or not? You haven't answered it yet. Did you approve of the order?
RAEDER: I always said-yes, I did-no, I do not want to say- I said that twice already. I passed it on because it was an order from my Commander-in-Chief. Moreover, in one of the last paragraphs it said that that order should not be applied for the treatment of prisoners taken after a naval action or after large scale landing operations and I, as well as many others in the Navy, concentrated our attention on this point because that was our main activity. But I saw no reason to raise objections to the Fuehrer on account of this order which I thought justified in this way. And I would like to state very clearly that I, as a soldier, was not in a position to go to my Supreme Commander and Chief of State to tell him, "Show me your reasons for this order," that would have been mutiny and could not have been done under any circumstances.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, do you remember that one example which we have discussed a great deal in this Trial, which you must have listened to, was the case of naval men coming in with a two-man torpedo, trying to sink the Tirpitz. Do you remember that case? Surely you can answer that "yes" or "no," because either you remember or you do not. We have discussed it about six times.
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RAEDER: Yes, I remember. If I remember I will say "yes." The contrary does not have to be assumed at ale
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Do you know that during the time that you were Inspector General, or Admiral Inspector of the German Navy, that there was started a "Kommando der Kleinkampfverbaende," under Vice Admiral Helmut Heye, which included in its command one-man torpedoes, one-man U-boats, explosive motor boats, and had personnel, starting at about 5,000 and rising, I think, as far as 16,000? Did you know that there was that Kommando in the Navy, "Kommando der Kleinkampfverbaende"? Did you know that?
RAEDER: Yes, I knew that of course and that it operated quite openly on the French coast and later on, I believe, also on the North coast.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Would you have approved if the Allies had shot any one of your thousands of personnel in that Kommando that was dealing with one-man and two-man torpedoes and explosive motor boats? Would you have approved if we had shot them out of hand?
RAEDER: First, I cannot give any information about what I would have done in a particular case with which I had nothing to do any more. Secondly, here it is...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: All right, if you don't want to answer, it is good enough for me. I will point it out in due course to the Tribunal with...
RAEDER: But you interrupted me again. I should like to make a second point after what I said first. Secondly, these units fought quite openly, just below the coast, and had no civilians on board and also no murderous instruments or instruments for sabotage with them, so they were fighters just like the fighters in a submarine. I know...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That is exactly the point that I have put with our Commandos, so I will not argue.
I want to pass to one other point. Was it under your orders that the log on the Athenia was falsified? Was it by your direct order?
RAEDER: No, not at all. I have explained the other day here that my order was, "First: absolute secrecy upon the order of the Fuehrer. Secondly: politically it will be dealt with by the High Command of the Navy. Thirdly"-there was a third point-I will find it in a second-"I do not intend to punish the commander because he acted in good faith and committed an error." That is what I ordered. I did not order anything further concerning that.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, do you know under whose orders the log was falsified? I am very anxious to know. The log was falsified. I have asked the Defendant Doenitz. He cannot tell me. He has put in an affidavit that the matter was to be left to you, and now I am asking you whether you can tell me. I think the commander is dead, as far as I remember, so he cannot tell me. Do you say that you cannot tell me under whose orders the log of the Submarine U-30, that sank the Athenia, was falsified?
RAEDER: I have already said that I had nothing to do with it, because in fact I did not have anything to do with such details. I did not order such details. The other day-I do not know whether Admiral Wagner said it-it was discussed who did it. I assumed that it was within the flotilla.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Tell me just this about the Athenia. You told us the other day that you gave these orders, and then washed your hands of the matter. Nearly a month later. . .
RAEDER: I have already said I had nothing further to do with it, for you know...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: You had nothing to do with it. Nearly a month later the Propaganda Ministry put out this suggestion, I think you said on Hitler's orders-that the Athenia had been sunk by Churchill. Did you not feel that it was your duty as Grand Admiral and head of the German Navy to make any protests against this disgraceful, lying suggestion, that the First Lord of the British Admiralty had deliberately sent to their deaths a lot of British and American subjects? Did you not think it was your duty to do that?
RAEDER: I spoke to Hitler about it-but it had happened without our having any idea about it. I was extremely embarrassed about it when the First Lord of the Admiralty was attacked in that, one can say, boorish manner but I could not change anything subsequently and Hitler did not admit that he...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: So you did not bother about that, as I understand it, you didn't bother at all...
RAEDER: Yes, I had misgivings about it, and I was very indignant about it. Please do not keep twisting what I say...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Did you translate your indignation into actions? That is what I am asking.
RAEDER: Into what kind of action?
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Any action.
RAEDER: Yes, that Hitler should get Goebbels to contradict that article? That Hitler would not do if he himself had been the author of the article.
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SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Now, I just want to get it clear. You did nothing when you knew that Von Blomberg and Von Fritsch, who were old friends and comrades of yours, had been framed up by sections of these Nazi plotters; you did nothing about that? You did nothing to protest against the treatment meted out to Von Blomberg or Von Fritsch? You did nothing, did you?
RAEDER: No, but at that time I did not know anything about the background, as you yourself said this morning. I knew nothing about the background. Later when I became acquainted with the details I gradually put the whole picture together. At that time I was not in a position to assume that such methods would be at all possible.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE Well, I put to you your own statement that you made a year ago. I just want to get it quite clear that the first time in your life that you were moved to protest was, I think, in March 1945, when you saw the actual marks of torture on the hands of your friend, Herr Gessler, and at that time the Soviet troops were over the Oder and the Allies were over the Rhine, and that was the first time that you made any protest when you took off your Party Golden Emblem, wasn't it? That was the first protest you ever made in your naval, military, political career; is that right?
RAEDER: Not a bit of it. I did not really know what was going on.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well then-I put it again. In March 1945 you took off the Party Golden Emblem when you saw the marks of torture on your friend Gessler's hands. Isn't that right?
RAEDER: When Dr. Gessler, who in spite of my objections had been kept for several months in a concentration camp, returned from the concentration camp and informed me that he was in extremely pitiful condition, and that in spite of my request in August, when he was sent to the concentration camp and when I had asked the Fuehrer through Admiral Wagner for Dr. Gessler to be questioned quickly because he was certainly innocent in connection with the assassination attempt, so that he could be released as soon as possible, then...
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: Well, my question is, was it then that you took off the Party Emblem. You can answer that. You can give your explanation later.
RAEDER: Yes, but wait a moment.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: But up to then you did not make any protest against anything that Hitler did, except the purely military one on the invasion of the Soviet Union?
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RAEDER: I always made serious protests, and that I have proved here, and the adjutant, General Schmundt, told me, "You will be most successful if you try to influence the Fuehrer personally when you are alone with him and tell him quite openly what you think." This is important enough to mention and I must say it.
Well, Dr. Gessler came back from the concentration camp and told me that during his first interrogation-at that time I had not yet had a chance to intervene-he had been tortured. That was the first time that I heard that anywhere in Germany anybody was tortured. There is a letter from Dr. Gessler about that-that I told him immediately, "I am going to the Fuehrer at once to tell him about this because I cannot imagine that he knows about that.'' Gessler begged me-when he confirmed that letter-for goodness sake not to go to the Fuehrer then, because that would endanger his, Gessler's, life. I said I would answer for it that nothing would happen to him, and that I would still try to approach the Fuehrer.
During the whole of the ensuing period I attempted to approach the Fuehrer, who was not at headquarters. When I was informed in April that he was in Berlin, which was already under heavy attack, I tried to approach the Fuehrer day after day by calling Admiral Voss over the telephone. That was no longer possible, and after I received that information the first thing I did was that I went, together with my wife, to the lake which was behind our house and tore off my Party Emblem and threw it into the lake. I told that to Admiral Voss but unfortunately I could not tell it to the Fuehrer any more. That can be seen from the letter which Dr. Gessler wrote, and we would have liked to have him as a witness, but his state of health did not permit it.
SIR DAVID MAXWELL-FYFE: That was your first protest.
RAEDER: It was not my first protest. That is twisting my words.
THE PRESIDENT: Is there any other cross-examination?
COL. POKROVSKY: On 18 May 1946, during the morning session of the Tribunal you testified that during your service as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy you twice made application to resign. The first time you tried to resign was in November 1938 when you were dealing with the building up of the Navy, and Hitler was not pleased with your plans, and the second time was when Hitler, without your knowledge, permitted his adjutant who was a naval officer to marry a certain young girl. Is that not so?
RAEDER: Yes, but I put in further applications for resignation which were not so sensational, once in 1937, and I believe even in 1935, when I was not in good health. But these were two typical examples which show how such things came about.
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COL. POKROVSKY: I understood that in the first of these two cases Hitler finally persuaded you not to resign.
COL. POKROVSKY: And in the second case, he complied with your wish but he never forgot it.
COL. POKROVSKY: In fact, you resigned only in January 1943, is that not so?
RAEDER: In actual fact, yes. But I must add that during the war I felt I could not leave the Navy, which was already in such a difficult situation, and I believed I enjoyed its confidence to a certain extent so that I could be useful.
COL. POKROVSKY: On the morning of 18 May you said here in the Court in regard to your resignation, that it seemed to you then that Hitler, at that particular moment, wanted to get rid of you. Is that so?
RAEDER: At that moment I had the impression, when he made such serious accusations and when he considerably contradicted his previous judgments, that maybe he wanted to get rid of me, and l therefore considered that that was a particularly favorable moment to leave.
COL. POKROVSKY: The question of successors was solved by your naming a few people to Hitler.
COL. POKROVSKY: And among them was the Defendant Doenitz. Did you mention his name?
RAEDER: Yes. I mentioned his name. I informed the Fuehrer of that in writing, first Carls, second, in case he wanted to concentrate on submarine warfare, Grossadmiral Doenitz, who was the highest authority in that field.
COL. POKROVSKY: And does it not seem to you, after your answer to my questions, that the answer which you gave to Dr. Laternser on 18 May, when you mentioned the absolute impossibility of resigning from the general staff, was not a proper answer? It was possible to resign, was it not?
RAEDER: Yes, but in this case, of course, there were two prerequisites. The first was that Hitler himself did not like me any more and I knew it, so that it would not be insubordination if I threw up my post for some reason or other.
Secondly, because it was possible, as I pointed out in that conversation, for the change to take place under peaceful conditions so
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that the Navy would not suffer by it. If I had left because of a quarrel, then that would have had a very bad effect on the Navy because it might have meant a certain split between the Navy and Hitler, and I had particularly to preserve unity, at that critical moment of the war.
COL. POKROVSKY: I would like you to understand my question correctly.
RAEDER: Yes, I understand...
COL. POKROVSKY: I am not asking you about the prerequisites which might have been required for granting an application for resignation. I am asking you a question in principle:
Was it possible or was it not possible to resign? After all, you did resign. You resigned from your post as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy.
RAEDER: Yes, but I had been in the service for 15 years, and I could tell him, "If that is the way you yourself judge me, then there is no sense in your continuing to work with me." That was a favorable opportunity which made it permissible for me to ask him to release me. But what one could not do was to throw up the job and give the impression of being insubordinate. That had to be avoided at all costs, I would never have done that. I was too much of a soldier for that.
COL. POKROVSKY: I have already heard what I wanted to hear from you in reply to my question.
Now, I will pass on to the next question. You maintain that all the time you were striving towards normalizing relations with the Soviet Union, is that correct?
RAEDER: I am sorry; I could not understand what you said.
COL. POKROVSKY: You maintain that during your service you always strove to make the relations between Germany and the Soviet Union quite normal, is that not so?
RAEDER: I was always in favor of the Bismarck policy, that we should have a common policy with Russia.
COL. POKROVSKY: If I understood your testimony correctly the day before yesterday and on Friday, in 1940, already, you had knowledge of the fact that Hitler intended to attack the Soviet Union.
RAEDER: In September 1940 for the first time I heard certain statements from Hitler himself that he was thinking of a war with Russia, given certain circumstances. Even in the directive he mentioned one of these prerequisites, one of these circumstances. He did not say to me at that time that in any circumstances he wanted to wage war, but that we had to be prepared, as it says in
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Paragraph 1, that before crushing England we might have to fight against Russia. And from September on I began to make objections to him.
COL. POKROVSKY: Was there not a case of an incident when you maintained that the explanations which had been given by official governmental organs or agencies for an attack on the Soviet Union gave you and the others the impression that it was a deliberate propaganda, and in fact they were quite repulsive in their effect? Do you remember that?
RAEDER: The propaganda made by Hitler made an impression? I did not quite get it. . .
COL. POKROVSKY: I believe that you once expressed in writing the view that the OKW and the Foreign Ministry explained to the German people the reasons for attacking the Soviet Union in such a way as to give the impression that it was deliberate propaganda, and the total effect was repulsive. Do you not remember it?
RAEDER: Oh, you mean the broadcasts emanating from the Foreign Office when the war started? Yes, that was Hitler's propaganda to make the German people understand the reason for this war. That is right. As regards breaking the Pact.. .
COL. POKROVSKY: I would like you to take a look at one document. This is a document written by you, and I would like you to tell us whether this document contains the precise subject matter of my question.
RAEDER: Where is it?
COL. POKROVSKY: "The propagandistic . . ."
RAEDER: "The propagandistic"-shall I read it?
"The propagandistic, political and military announcements given out at the beginning of the war by the Foreign Office and the High Command of the Armed Forces, which were to justify the breaking of the Pact because of breaches by the Soviet Union, found very little credence among the people as well as among the Armed Forces. They showed too clearly that they were propaganda for a certain purpose and had a repulsive effect." (USSR-460.)
I know that at that time Hitler himself drafted these documents, together with Goebbels.
COL. POKROVSKY: In connection with this question I have another question for you. Am I to understand you in this way; that your divergence of opinion with Hitler over foreign policy, and in particular in regard to aggressive wars, was less strongly defined than your difference of opinion about the question of the marriage of a naval officer with a certain girl? Did you understand me?
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RAEDER: No, they were two quite different things. Those were military questions where the political decisions remained with the Fuehrer. I was very insistent about the moral issues also, where they concerned the Pact, but I did not send him any written ultimatum because in this matter it would have been unsoldierly. I did not have the final decision, he had it; whereas in the case of Albrecht, it was up to me to decide-to say yes or no-and not to sign that which I was supposed to sign.
COL. POKROVSKY: You are saying now that this is a question of morals. Does it not seem to you that an unprovoked attack on a country with which Germany had a nonaggression treaty-do you not think that such a question is always connected with the question of morals?
RAEDER: Of course; that is what I said myself, that in this case too I laid special stress on the moral issue. But in spite of that, as the highest man of the Navy, I was not in a position to hold out the threat of resignation at that moment. I was too much of a soldier to be able to do that, to be able to leave the Navy at a moment like that.
COL. POKROVSKY: In answer to questions put to you by your counsel here in this courtroom you testified that your speech, which was delivered by you on 12 March 1939-that is Page 169 of the Russian text in the Raeder document book, My Lord-the speech where you praised Hitler and Hitler's policies-you mentioned that this speech was not in accord with your true opinion. Is it so or is it not?
RAEDER: No, that is not correct. I said that we had had the experience that the Communists and Jews, from 1917 to 1920, had strongly undermined our power of resistance, and that for this reason it could be understood, if a National Socialist government took certain measures against both of them in order to stem their influence, which was excessive. That was the sense of my statements and I made absolutely no mention of any further steps which might come into question.
COL. POKROVSKY: In short, you are saying now that when you delivered that speech on 12 March 1939, that this speech was fully in accord with your ideas and your views. Is that correct?
RAEDER: Yes, it was, or I would not have made it. It was in accord insofar as I had to recognize that the National Socialist Government had in some way to stem that influence which was generally recognized to be excessive, and as I said yesterday, the National Socialist Government had issued the Nuremberg Laws, which I did not entirely approve of where they went to extremes. But if the Government was so disposed, it was not possible for me in an official public speech, which I gave on the orders of that Government, to
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express my personal views which were different. That had to be considered within this address to the nation.
THE PRESIDENT: Will you be able to finish in a very few moments? It is now five minutes past five.
COL. POKROVSKY: I think, My Lord, that only about 10 minutes will be sufficient for me. I have only about three or four more questions left.
THE PRESIDENT: All right.
COL. POKROVSKY: [Turning to the defendant.] In order to save time I am not going to argue with you in regard to the motives which made you deliver the speech. It was important for me that you should confirm what you said, and that is, that this speech was in accord with your views and ideas. Now I will pass on to the next question.
On 29 September 1941, your Chief of Staff, Admiral Fricke-do I pronounce his name correctly? Is it Fricke or Fricker?
RAEDER: Fricke, yes, Chief of the Staff of the Naval Operations Staff.
COL. POKROVSKY: Admiral Fricke published a directive in regard to the future fate of Leningrad. Do you know what document I mean, or must this document be shown to you?
RAEDER: No. I know that document very well.
COL. POKROVSKY: This directive was published with your consent?
RAEDER: I did not give a specific order for it because there was no necessity for passing it on. May I just explain briefly how it was. I had...
COL. POKROVSKY: Yes, and I would like you to be brief.
RAEDER: Quite briefly, yes. I had requested Hitler when I heard that he intended in the course of the war to bombard Leningrad, that he should spare the port and dock installations because they would be useful for us later, as we had to keep moving our bases back to the East on account of the British air attacks in the Baltic. Shortly before the date which you have mentioned Admiral Fricke had been at the Fuehrer's headquarters-I do not know for what reason-and had there spoken with the Fuehrer in my absence, and the Fuehrer had explained to him that plan to bombard Leningrad, especially with aircraft, and he used those very exaggerated words which were then written down in the document. The Navy had absolutely nothing to do with the shelling of Leningrad. We received no orders for that. We were only interested in that one thing which I mentioned before, that the shipyards and port installations should
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be spared. The Fuehrer had informed Fricke that unfortunately he was not in a position to do that because the attack, especially if made with aircraft, could not be directed quite so precisely. All we could do was to inform Generaladmiral Carls that Leningrad, in case it should be taken, could not be used as a base, and Generaladmiral Carls had to stop the preparations which he had already begun by allocating German workers and probably also machinery which was intended to be used in Leningrad later on. Carls had to know of that and, as the document says, the so-called Quartermaster Department of the Navy had to know about it, and that was why Admiral Fricke passed on that paper. Unfortunately he included in this paper the expressions used by Hitler, which had nothing to do with the whole affair as far as we were concerned, because we had nothing to do with the shelling. By so doing he did not assume in any way the responsibility, in the sense that he approved it. He only believed that he had to pass on Hitler's wording of the order.
The Navy had nothing to do with the matter. It would not have been necessary to pass it on, and unfortunately and very clumsily that expression used by Hitler was entered in that document. However, nothing happened and that document was not passed on from Generaladmiral Carls to our Finland Commander. That is the whole story.
COL. POKROVSKY: It seems to me the question is becoming more complicated. I asked you a simple question. Your Chief of Staff, Chief of Operations, published a directive. Did you know about the directive?
RAEDER: No. That is not a directive-that can be seen also from the photostat-because the letter had not been submitted to me for passing on, and that shows that it was not considered to be very important. It was not a directive to undertake any operation or anything important. It was just a directive to stop anything that might have been done with regard to bases; so that really nothing happened. Thus, when that document was passed on by Admiral Fricke, nothing happened at all. It was quite superfluous.
COL. POKROVSKY: You are talking about the destruction of one of the biggest cities of the Soviet Union. You are talking in this document about razing the city to the ground, and you maintain now that it is a more or less trifling question, that this question was not important enough to be reported to you, as Fricke's Chief? Do you want us to believe that?
RAEDER: Of course. It is not a question of the shelling of Leningrad, with which we had nothing to do at all. It was the minor question which concerned us, the question as to whether we would later be able to establish a naval base there, and whether we could
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bring workers and machines and such things to Leningrad. That was a minor issue. The shelling of Leningrad was a major issue.
COL. POKROVSKY: I think that the Tribunal will be able to understand you correctly and to draw the necessary conclusions, both from this document and from your testimony.
Now, I have one last question for you. On 28 August 1945, in Moscow, did you not write an affidavit as to the reasons for Germany's defeat?
RAEDER: Yes, I took special pains with that after the collapse.
COL. POKROVSKY: My Lord, we submit this document to the Tribunal in the form of excerpts, Document Number USSR-460. In order to save time I would like you to hear several excerpts from this affidavit.
[Turning to the defendant.] You will be shown where they can be found on the original, and you can say whether it was correctly read into the record and whether you acknowledge and confirm it.
"My Attitude Towards Adolf Hitler and the Party. Disastrous influence on the fate of the German State...."
Did you find this place?
RAEDER: Yes, I have it.
COL. POKROVSKY: "Unimaginable vanity and immeasurable . . ."
DR. SIEMERS: Would you be kind enough to give me a copy so that I can follow?
COL. POKROVSKY: "Unimaginable vanity and immeasurable ambition were his main peculiarities; running after popularity and showing off, untruthfulness, vagueness, and selfishness, which were not restrained for the sake of State or People. He was outstanding in his greed, wastefulness, and effeminate unsoldierly manner."
Then, a little further on:
"It is my conviction that Hitler very soon realized his character, but made use of him where it suited his purpose, and burdened him perpetually with new tasks in order to avoid his becoming dangerous to himself."
On Page 24 of your document you give another characteristic;
"The Fuehrer continued to attach importance to the fact that from the outside his relations to me seemed normal and good. He knew I was well thought of in all the really respectable circles of the German people, and that in general everybody had great faith in me. This cannot be said of Goering, Von Ribbentrop, Dr. Goebbels, Himmler and Dr. Ley. "
Now I will ask you to find Page 27.
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RAEDER: But there is something missing. "In the same way, as for instance, Baron Von Neurath, Count Schwerin van Krosigk, Schacht, Dorpmueller and others," who were on the other side.
COL. POKROVSKY: Evidently it was not correctly translated to you. I will read this passage into the record. Now, on Page 27, this place is underlined in red pencil: "Doenitz' strong political inclination to the Party..."
THE PRESIDENT: [Interposing.] I think the Tribunal could read this themselves if the defendant says that it is true that he wrote it. Probably Dr. Siemers could check it over and see that there are no inaccuracies.
COL. POKROVSKY: Very well, My Lord. Then I shall have the opportunity to put a very brief question.
[Turning to the defendant.] I will ask you to take a look at a place on Page 29, which is marked with pencil, where the paragraph deals with Field Marshal Keitel and General Jodl.
Will you confirm that?
RAEDER: What am I supposed to do? Yes, well...
COL. POKROVSKY: I am asking you with regard to everything that I read into the record and what you say just now in this paragraph. I would like to have an answer from you. Do you confirm all that?
DR. SIEMERS: Mr. President, I quite agree with the suggestion by the Tribunal. However, I should like to ask that the entire document be submitted. I have only short excerpts before me, and I would be grateful if I could see the entire document. I assume that Colonel Pokrovsky agrees to that.
THE PRESIDENT: Certainly, Dr. Siemers, one part of the document having been put in evidence, you can refer to the remainder of the document. You can put the remainder of the document in, if you want to.
RAEDER: I said that at the time I tried to find an explanation for the cause of our collapse.
COL. POKROVSKY: First, I ask you to give the answer, yes or no.
RAEDER: Yes. On the whole, I agree entirely with this judgment. But I should like to add that I wrote those things under entirely different conditions. I do not wish to go into details, and I never expected that that would ever become public. These were notes for myself to help me form my judgment later on. I also want to ask especially that what I said about Generaloberst Jodl should also be read into the record, or where it belongs, that is, right after the statement about Field Marshal Keitel. With regard to Field Marshal Keitel, I should like to emphasize that I intended to convey
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that it was his manner towards the Fuehrer which made it possible for him to get along with him for a long time, because if anybody else had been in that position, who had a quarrel with the Fuehrer every day or every other day, then the work of the whole of the Armed Forces would have been impossible.
That is the reason and the explanation of what I wanted to express by that statement.
COL. POKROVSKY: The Soviet Prosecution has no further questions to ask the defendant.
THE PRESIDENT: Defendant, have you got the whole document before you? Was that the original document you had before you?
THE PRESIDENT: In your writing?
RAEDER: No, it is typewritten. But it is signed by me.
THE PRESIDENT: Then the document can be handed to Dr. Siemers.
Dr. Siemers, do you want to re-examine beyond putting in that document? Have you any questions you want to ask in addition to putting in that document?
DR. SIEMERS: Yes, on account of the cross-examination made by Sir David Maxwell-Fyfe, I should like to re-examine, and I should like to ask for permission to do that after I have read this document, so that I can also cover the document tomorrow in this connection.
MR. DODD: Mr. President, the thought occurs to me with respect to this document-do I understand that the Tribunal will order copies to be distributed to all of the Defense Counsel? There are matters with respect to the defendants on which the Counsel might want to examine. They might be surprised.
THE PRESIDENT: I thought it was fair that Dr. Siemers should see the document.
MR. DODD: Yes. I have no objection to that. But my point is, that in the document there is reference to defendants other than the defendant represented by Dr. Siemers. And at a later date, if this document is not made known to the others by the reading of it or by the turning over to them in translated form, they may claim surprise, and lack of opportunity to examine on it.
THE PRESIDENT: I think some photostatic copies of the document should be made so that all the defendants referred to therein may be acquainted with the terms of the document. -
MR. DODD: I just thought I would make that suggestion.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
[The Tribunal adjourned until 21 May 1946 at 1000 hours.]