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DR. SIEMERS: Yesterday I dealt with the events before the outbreak of war. Now I shall turn to the events which occurred during the war.
I think I have shown that the Navy had an extremely insignificant part in all events prior to the war, and that the transactions in which the Navy was authoritatively involved were carried out on a peace basis, namely, on the basis of the naval agreements with England. When the war nevertheless ultimately broke out, involving England, too, on 3 September 1939, a regrettable incident occurred on the very first day, through the sinking of the Athenia, from which the Prosecution endeavors by the use of exaggerated terms to construe a grave moral charge against Raeder, not so much indeed on the basis of its actual military aspect, that is, the sinking, which my colleague Dr. Kranzbuehler has already discussed, as on account of an article published in the Voelkischer Beobachter of 23 October 1939 entitled "Churchill Sinks the Athena." Were the facts as brought forward by the Prosecution correct, the moral accusations against Raeder and the Navy would be justified, even though, of course, an untruthful newspaper article is no crime. Consequently the accusation brought by the Prosecution is made for the sole purpose of vilifying Raeder's personality in contrast to the lifelong esteem which Raeder has enjoyed in the whole world, in fact especially abroad.
I think the evidence has sufficiently revealed that the statement of facts presented by the Prosecution is not correct. It is quite plausible that at first sight the Prosecution should have believed that the odious article in the Voelkischer Beobachter could not have appeared without the knowledge of the naval command. The Prosecution believed this because, in view of their conspiracy theory, they are inclined to assume in every case that there was constant discussion and close co-operation among the various departments. The course of the Trial has shown that this assumption is far from correct. The contrast between the various departments, and especially between the Navy and the Propaganda Ministry, or Raeder and Goebbels, was far greater than the contrast between
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departments in a democratic state. In addition, the testimonies of the witnesses Raeder, Schulte-Monting, Weizsacker, and Fritzsche, together with the documents, establish the following facts absolutely clearly:
(1) In early September 1939 Raeder himself firmly believed that the sinking was not to be imputed to a German U-boat, because it was revealed by the reports that the nearest German U-boat was at least 75 nautical miles away from the spot of the sinking.
(2) Accordingly Raeder, as stated in Document D-912, published a bon fide denial and gave statements to this effect to the American Naval Attache and to the German State Secretary, Baron Weizsacker.
(3) Raeder did not realize the mistake until after the return of U-30 on 27 September 1939.
(4) Hitler insisted, as evidenced by witnesses Raeder and Schulte-Monting, that no rectification of the facts should be made to any other German or foreign department, that is to say, that the sinking should not be acknowledged as caused by a German U-boat. He apparently let himself be guided by political considerations and wished to avoid complications with the U.S.A. over an incident which could not be remedied, however regrettable it was. Hitler's order was so strict that the few officers who were informed were put under oath to keep it secret.
(5) Fritzsche disclosed that after the first investigation by the Navy in early September 1939, he made no further investigation and that the Voelkischer Beobachter article appeared as the result of an agreement between Hitler and Goebbels, without previous notice to Raeder. On this point the testimonies of Raeder and SchulteMonting coincide. It is consequently clear that Raeder-contrary to the claim of the Prosecution-was not the author of the article and, moreover, knew nothing about the article before its appearance. I regret the fact that in spite of this clarification the Prosecution are apparently intent upon persisting in their claim by the submission, on 3 July 1946, of ~ a new document, D-912. This newly 'submitted 'document only contains radio broadcasts by the Propaganda Ministry, which are of the same nature as the Voelkischer Beobachter article. These radio broadcasts were a propaganda instrument of Goebbels and cannot, any more than the article, be brought up as a charge against Raeder, who in fact was at the time informed only of the article, not of the radio broadcasts. Even the fact that Raeder, after being informed of the article, did not attempt to obtain a rectification, cannot be made a moral charge against him, since he was bound by Hitler's order and had no idea at the time that Hitler himself had had a hand in the article, which Weizsacker aptly described as perverse fantasy.
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In this connection I would remind the Tribunal that it is a well-known fact that precisely at the beginning of the war inaccurate reports also appeared in the English press about alleged German atrocities, which, even after their clarification, were not rectified, as for instance, the false report about the murder of 10,000 Czechs in Prague by German elements in September 1939, although the matter had been cleared up by a commission of neutral journalists.
The Prosecution professes to possess overwhelming material against all the defendants. If this presumption were correct with reference to Raeder, the Prosecution would scarcely have felt the need of bringing forward this Athenia case, of all things, in such ponderous and injurious terms for the sole purpose of discrediting the former Commander-in-Chief of the Navy.
Concerning Greece, the Prosecution accuses Raeder of violation of neutrality and breach of international law on two counts, namely:
(1) On the basis of Document C-12, according to which Hitler decided, basing on a report by Raeder on 30 December 1939, that:
"Greek merchant ships in the zone around England which the U.S.A. declared prohibited will be treated like enemy ships."
(2) According to Document C-176, on the occasion of the delivery of a report to Hitler on 18 March 1941, Raeder asked for confirmation that "all of Greece was to be occupied, even in case of peaceful settlement."
In the course of the Trial both accusations have turned out to be untenable; in both cases there is no action which violated international law.
With reference to the first accusation it should be pointed out that Raeder and the German Naval Command learned in October or November 1939 that quite a number of Greek merchant ships had been put at the disposal of England, either at the request or with the approval of the Greek Government (Documents Number Raeder-53, 54). This fact cannot be reconciled with strict neutrality, and according to the principles of international law that gave Germany the right to take an equivalent countermeasure. This justified countermeasure consisted in treating Greek ships heading for England as enemy ships from the moment they entered the zone around England which had been declared prohibited by the United States.
With reference to the second accusation it must be noted that Germany, especially the High Command of the Navy, had received reports that certain Greek military and political circles had maintained very close connections with the Allied General Staff ever since 1939. As time went by more and more reports came in. What the Allies were planning in the Balkans is known; the intentions
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were to erect a Balkan front against Germany. For this purpose local conditions in Greece, as well as in Romania, were examined by Allied officers on behalf of the Allied General Staff in order to establish airplane bases there. Furthermore, preparations were made to land in Greece. As proof I have presented, as Exhibit Number Raeder-59, the minutes of the session of the French War Committee of 26 April 1940, which shows that the War Committee was at that time already examining the question of possible operations in the Caucasus area and in the Balkans and which further reveals the activity of General Jauneaud in Greece for the purpose of continuing investigations and preparations and shows how he endeavored to camouflage his trip by making it in civilian clothing (Document Number Raeder-63).
This attitude of Greece, and especially her falling in with Allied plans, represents a violation of neutrality on the part of Greece; for Greece did not appear as England's ally but formally continued to. maintain her neutrality. Therefore, Greece could no longer expect that Germany would fully respect Greek neutrality. Germany nevertheless did do so for a long time. The occupation of Greece took place in April 1941 only after British troops had already landed in southern Greece on 3 March 1941.
The fact that Greece agreed to the British landing is, according to generally recognized rules, without significance in international legal relations and with regard to the international legal decision between Germany and England and between Germany and Greece; it has importance only in the legal relations between England and Greece.
The British Prosecution tried to justify the occupation of Greece by pointing to the fact that Greek neutrality was menaced by Germany, especially by the occupation of Bulgaria on 1 March 1941. In this connection the Prosecution is overlooking the fact that not only did the occupation of Greece By British forces start considerably earlier than the German planning, but also the planning of the Allies. But be that as it may, in any case, no accusation whatever can be made against Raeder, because the date of the document submitted by the Prosecution is 18 March 1941, which means that it is 14 days later than the landing of the British in southern Greece. At that time Greece could certainly no longer demand that her alleged neutrality be respected. It is also an unjustified charge when the Prosecution points out that Raeder asks for confirmation that all of Greece will be occupied. This request by Raeder cannot be made responsible for the fact that all of Greece was occupied, for Hitler had already provided in his Directive Number 20 of 13 December 1940 that the entire Greek mainland was to be occupied, in order to frustrate British
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intentions of creating a dangerous basis for air operations under the protection of a Balkan front, especially for the Romanian oil district. In addition to that, the inquiry of Raeder on 18 March 1941 was justified on strategic grounds, because Greece offered many landing possibilities for the British and the only possible defense was for Greece to be firmly in the hands of Germany, as the witnesses Raeder and Schulte-Monting have explained.
This strategic conception of Raeder had nothing to do with plans of conquest or thirst for glory, as the Prosecution thinks, for the Navy won no glory whatsoever in Greece, since the occupation was a land operation. The occupation of an originally neutral country is simply the regrettable consequence of such a large-scale war; it cannot be charged to one belligerent if both belligerents had plans concerning the same state, and carried out these plans.
I should like now to go on to the subject of Norway. On 9 April 1940 troops of all three branches of the German Armed Forces occupied Norway and Denmark. From this and the preceding plans, the Prosecution have brought the gravest accusation against Grossadmiral Raeder, together with the collective charge of participation in a conspiracy.
The British prosecutor pointed out that it was Raeder who first suggested the occupation of Norway to Hitler, and believes that Raeder did so out of a spirit of conquest and vainglory. I shall demonstrate that this argumentation is incorrect. One thing is true, that is that in this single instance Raeder took the initiative of first approaching Hitler on the subject of Norway, namely on 10 October 1939. However, I shall show that in fact in this connection he acted not as a politician but exclusively as a soldier. Raeder sensed purely strategic dangers and pointed out these strategic dangers to Hitler, because he assumed that the Allies were contemplating the establishment of a new front in Scandinavia and in Norway, in particular, and realized that an occupation of Norway by Britain might have militarily disastrous consequences for Germany. I shall show that Germany committed no violation of international 1a\v by the occupation of Norway. Before I state the legal foundation and connect the facts established by the appraisal of evidence with the principles of international law, I should like first to state an important fact:
As Raeder's examination shows and as disclosed by Schulte-Monting's interrogations, he very reluctantly advocated the Norwegian campaign as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy. Raeder had the natural feeling born of justice that a neutral state could not be drawn into the existing war without an absolutely imperative emergency. During the period between October 1939 and spring 1940, Raeder always upheld the theory that by far the best solution
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would be for Norway and all Scandinavia to remain absolutely neutral.
Raeder and Schulte-Monting were in agreement on this point during their interrogations; and it is, moreover, proved by documents. For this, I refer to Exhibit Number Raeder-69 where the conviction of Raeder is expressed that the most favorable solution would undoubtedly be the preservation of the strictest neutrality by Norway; this is entered in the War Diary on 13 January 1940. Raeder clearly saw that an occupation of Norway by Germany, for reasons of international law or strategy, could only be conceivable if Norway could not or would not maintain absolute neutrality.
The Prosecution has referred to the treaties between Germany and Norway, in particular to Document TC-31, by which the Reich Government, on 2 September 1939, expressly assures Norway of her inviolability and integrity. In this memorandum, however, the following legitimate remark is added:
"As the Reich Cabinet makes this declaration, it naturally
also expects that Norway in turn will observe irreproachable
neutrality toward the Reich and that it will not tolerate
breaches of Norwegian neutrality, should attempts along that
line be made by third parties."
If, despite this fundamental attitude, Germany decided to occupy Norway, this was done because the plans of the Allies made imminent the danger of an occupation of Norwegian bases by them. In his opening speech Sir Hartley Shawcross declared that Germany's breach of neutrality and her war of aggression against Norway remained criminal in the sense of the Indictment even if Allied plans for the occupation had been correct, and he added that in reality such plans were not true. I believe that the argument advanced here by Sir Hartley Shawcross is contrary to accepted international law. If Allied plans for the occupation of Norwegian bases existed and there was a risk that Norway neither would nor could maintain strict neutrality, then accepted standards of international law did sanction Germany's Norwegian campaign.
I would first like to bring up the juridical viewpoints based on prevailing international law in order to create a foundation for my own statements, and thereby at the same time to set forth those legal viewpoints which contradict the Prosecution's interpretation. In order to save time in this legal exposition and make the subject matter clearer I have submitted as Exhibit Number Raeder-66 an opinion on international law with regard to the Norway campaign by Dr. Hermann Mosler, professor of international law at the University of Bonn. The High Tribunal will remember that I was given permission to make use of this opinion for purposes of argumentation, and I would therefore refer at this point to this detailed
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scientific compilation and findings. For the purpose of final plea I shall confine myself to a summary of the essential concepts of the opinion. ~
Articles 1 and ~ of ~ the Hague Convention on Rights and Obligations of Neutrals in the event of warfare at sea stipulate that the parties at war are bound to respect the rights of sovereignty of neutral powers in the territory and coastal waters of the neutral power, and all hostile acts of warships of the belligerent parties within the coastal waters of a neutral power are strictly banned as violations of neutrality. Contrary to these stipulations Great Britain violated Norway's neutrality through the laying of mines in Norwegian coastal waters for the purpose of obstructing the legitimate passage of German warships and merchantmen, especially in order to cut off shipments of iron ore from Narvik to Germany. In the letter from the British Foreign Office which I received in reply to my petition for authorization to submit files of the British Admiralty, confirmation as per Exhibit Number Raeder-130 was received to the effect that His Majesty's forces laid mine fields in Norwegian waters, and in addition it was stated that this was a well-known fact (Documents Number Raeder-83, 84, 90).
The fact is presumably uncontested that thereupon Germany was justified in restoring the equilibrium between the belligerent parties, in other words by setting her Armed Forces to wrest from the enemy the benefit he was deriving from a violation of neutrality. Reaction against such a violation of neutrality is directed primarily against the enemy, not against the neutral. The legal relationship to neutrality...
PRESIDENT [Interposing]: Dr. Siemers, the Tribunal would like to know what your contention is on this subject. Do you contend that any breach of neutrality of a warring state entitles one of the warring nations to enter that neutral state?
DR. SIEMERS: Mr. President, in this general way one certainly could not say that. It is a principle of international law that a violation of international law committed by one state only entitles the other warring nation to a countermeasure in proportion to the breach of neutrality committed. Certainly an occupation of Norway on the part of Germany would not be justified because Britain mined the coastal waters. The fact does not justify an occupation.
PRESIDENT: Would it be your contention that it made any difference on the rights of Germany if Germany were to be held to be an aggressor in the original war?
I will repeat it. According to your contention, would it make any difference that Germany was held, if it were held, to be the aggressor in the original war out of which the occupation of the neutral country occurred?
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DR. SIEMERS: Mr. President, I beg to apologize, but I am afraid I cannot quite understand the sense as it comes through in translation.
PRESIDENT: I will say it again more slowly. According to your contention, would it make any difference if the Tribunal were to think that Germany had been the aggressor in the war which led to the occupation of the neutral state?
DR.SIEMERS: My apologies, Mr. President. Now, if I understood that correctly, you wish me to answer the question whether the fact that previously a war had been begun by Germany against Poland would influence juridical attitude toward the question of Norway.
PRESIDENT: Assuming, I only say assuming that the war begun' by Germany against Poland were to be held to be an aggressive war.
DR.SIEMERS: Mr. President, I believe that I must answer in the negative, because the individual facts under international law must be dealt with separately. The fact that the Tribunal may possibly assume that an aggressive war was conducted against Poland cannot, from the point of view of international law, have any effect upon subsequent years.
That, incidentally, is the point of view which, I believe, was adopted by the Prosecution, for Sir Hartley Shawcross also dealt with the question of Greece and the question of landings entirely under the aspect of Greek events and did not contend that Britain could occupy Greece because Germany had occupied Poland. He said, just as I did, that from the legal standpoint of international law Britain could occupy Greece because Greece was threatened by a German occupation. That is what I am saying from the point of view of international law with reference to Norway; as my further remarks will show, I am not trying to draw any other parallels.
PRESIDENT: Yes. There is one other question which I should like to ask you. Is it your contention that Germany was entitled under international law to use the territorial waters of Norway, either for her warships or for the transport of ore, or for the transport of prisoners of war?
DR. SIEMERS: In my opinion, from the standpoint of international law, the situation is that Germany was entitled to use the coastal waters, observing at the same time the various international rules, such as for instance, only brief stays in ports and similar rulings like the obligation to submit to investigation by neutrals in the case of the Altmark. But basically, carrying on shipping
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operations from Narvik was justified according to international law as far as I know.
DR.SIEMERS: Mr. President, with reference to the last point, may I add one thing? Should the view be adopted that Germany was not allowed to use these coastal waters, then the mining of these coastal waters would have been a justified breach of neutrality on Britain's part, so that, as far as I am concerned, the mining operation as grounds for this would have to be left out of my plea, though not the other facts I am citing. Mining the waters is in equivalent proportion to the use of the coastal waters. I myself consider that the mining operation was not permissible, while passage through coastal waters was; but this does not affect the entire subject of the occupation of Norway. I hope I shall be understood as not meaning that Germany was justified in occupying Norway because Britain had mined the coastal waters.
PRESIDENT: But you are saying, are you, that Germany was entitled to use the coastal waters, first of all, for the transport of ore; secondly, for her warships?
PRESIDENT: And thirdly, for the transport of prisoners of war?
DR. SIEMERS: Yes. It is my opinion, Mr. President, that as to ore shipments there is no prohibitive clause in international law, so that this shipping was permissible.
With reference to prisoners of war, may I point out that only one case arose and that is the case of the Altmark. If Germany was not deemed authorized to use coastal waters for the transport of prisoners of war, then that could at most lead to Britain's adopting an equivalent single countermeasure; but she would not be justified in mining the entire coastal waters. The mining of the entire coast, from the point of view of international law, is only justified if you adopt the point of view that Germany's merchant shipping was prohibited from entering those coastal waters by international law. But that, in my opinion, is not the situation.
PRESIDENT: You may continue.
DR.SIEMERS: Reaction against such violation of neutrality is primarily directed against the adversary, not against the neutral party. Legal relationship deriving from neutrality exists not only between the neutral party and the two belligerent parties, but the neutrality of the state in question is at the same time a factor in direct relations existing between the belligerent parties. If the relationship of neutrality between one of the belligerent parties and the neutral power suffers disturbance, the neutral power can in
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no way file complaint if the other belligerent power takes appropriate action; at the same time it is entirely immaterial whether the neutral state is unable or unwilling to protect its neutrality (Document Number Raeder-66).
The legal title under which the belligerent power thus placed at a disadvantage can proceed to take countermeasures is the "right of self-defense" (das Recht der Selbsterhaltung; le droit de defense personelle). As brought out in detail by this opinion, this right of self-defense is generally recognized by international law. It suffices to point out here that this basic law is not affected by the Kellogg Pact, which has so often been mentioned in this Court. In this connection I ask permission to offer the following brief quotation from the circular memorandum of the U. S. Secretary of State, Kellogg, dated 23 June 1938:
"There is nothing in the American draft of an antiwar treaty which restricts or prejudices the right of self-defense in any manner. That right is inherent in every sovereign state and is implied in every treaty."
Justice Jackson will permit me to mention that he himself, in his opening speech of 21 November 1945, referred to the "right of legitimate self-defense."
It is interesting that in his address before Parliament on 8 February 1940, the Swedish Foreign Minister, Guenther, recognized this concept, although he represented the interests of a state whose neutrality was endangered at the time, and in addition was speaking before Germany proceeded to retaliatory measures in Norway (Document Number Raeder-66). In that address Guenther expressed his opinion with regard to the British declaration that Sweden's neutrality would be respected only as long as it was respected by Britain's enemies. Guenther recognized the fact that Sweden, in her relationship to England, would lose her neutrality should Germany violate Sweden's neutrality and should Sweden be neither willing nor able to prevent such violation of her neutrality by Germany. Consequently, Guenther said, Great Britain would no longer be required to treat Sweden as a neutral country. It is obvious that the conclusions drawn by Guenther in the event of a breach of Sweden's neutrality by Germany must also apply to the three-cornered legal relationship between Great Britain, Germany, and Norway. What was involved, however-and this I shall set forth in my presentation of evidence-was not Great Britain's mine-laying activity in Norwegian coastal waters but a much more far-reaching Anglo-French scheme aiming at the occupation of Norwegian bases and of a portion of the Norwegian home territory. The mine-laying activity enters into the picture merely as a part of the total plan.
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According to Mosler's opinion and in the light of the above remarks, it is absolutely clear that Germany was justified in occupying Norway had the Allies carried part of their plan into effect by landing at a Norwegian base before German troops made their appearance. This, however, was not the case. Rather, as I will show, was the situation such that Germany anticipated an Anglo-French landing; in other words, she decided on countermeasures in anticipation of the imminent danger which threatened.
Another legal question arises therefrom: Assuming the same conditions, are countermeasures by a belligerent permitted only after the opposing belligerent has proceeded to violate neutrality, or is a reaction permitted beforehand in view of the imminently threatening violation of neutrality, in order to head off the enemy's attack which can be expected at any moment?
According to the well-founded opinion of Dr. Mosler preventive countermeasures are permissible; and an impending violation of neutrality, which can be expected with certainty, is considered equal to a completed violation of neutrality.
The well-known English specialist on international law, Westlake, states with regard to the question of measures:
"Such a case in character resembles one where a belligerent has certain knowledge that his opponent, in order to gain a strategic advantage, is just about to have an army march through the territory of a neutral who is clearly too weak to resist; under the circumstances it would be impossible to refuse him the right to anticipate the attack on the neutral territory."
The justification for such a preventive measure, according to Westlake, lies in the right of self-defense, which applies equally against a threatening violation of neutrality. Any other concept would fail to meet the facts of life and would not correspond to the character of the society of nations as an aggregation of sovereign states with an as yet incompletely developed common code of law. In the domestic law system of every civilized country the prevention of an immediately threatening attack is a permissible act of defense, although in such a contingency even the help of the state against the law-breaker is available. In the community of international law, where this is not the case-at any rate not at the beginning of and during the second World War-the viewpoint of self-defense must apply to an even greater extent. In keeping with this concept, the British Government during this war also considered the preventive measure justified when it occupied Iceland on 10 May 1940. The British Government justified this measure
clearly and correctly in accordance with international law in an official announcement of the Foreign Office, as follows:
"After the German occupation of Denmark it has become
necessary to count on the possibility of a sudden German
raid on Iceland. It is clear that the Icelandic Government, in
case of such an attack, even if it were only carried out with
very small forces, would be unable to prevent the country
from falling completely into the hands of the Germans."
The preventive measure was carried out by Britain, although Iceland expressly protested by a note against the occupation. I also ask to note that the United States agreed with this standpoint of law, as is proved by the well-known message from the President of the United States to Congress of 7 July 1941, and the subsequent occupation of Iceland by armed forces of the American Navy.
In accordance with these basic principles of law, the facts at hand must be examined. I have tried to clarify the facts in the presentation of evidence, and I would like to summarize the major factors which actually indicated a closely impending violation of neutrality on the part of the Allies by a partial occupation of Norway, and thereby justified the German campaign in Norway.
At the end of September and early in October 1939, Admiral Raeder, as the evidence has shown, received various items of information through the regular reports of Admiral Canaris as chief of intelligence and through Admiral Carls, which gave reason to believe in the danger of the Allies' proceeding to occupy bases in Norway, in accordance with their plans to encircle Germany in order to put a stop, in particular, to ore imports from Scandinavia.
British flying personnel camouflaged in civilian clothing had been seen in Oslo; and survey work by Allied officers on Norwegian bridges, viaducts, and tunnels up to the Swedish border had been identified. Furthermore, the quiet mobilization of Swedish troops, owing to the danger to Swedish ore territories, had become known. Raeder was justified in considering himself obliged to report these facts to Hitler and to point out to him the danger which would arise for Germany if British and French armed forces were to gain a foothold in Scandinavia. The dangers were clear. They consisted of the cutting-off of all imports from the industrial areas of Scandinavia, in particular of the ore imports, as well as in the fact that the Allies would obtain a favorable base for air attacks, and last but not least, in the fact that the German Navy would be threatened on its flank and its operational potentialities would be limited.
The blockade of the North Sea and Baltic would have had strategically disastrous consequences. As the information did not yet allow of a final over-all picture, Raeder did not suggest immediate occupation, but only pointed out the dangers, intending to
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await further developments for the time being. Neither did Hitler make a final decision during this discussion of 10 October 1939 but agreed to wait. Similar information was received during the months of October and November, this time also from the naval attache, Korvettenkapitan Schreiber, who had in the meantime been sent to Oslo, whose affidavit (Document Raeder-107) I would like to cite. It shows that the Norwegian shipping association had made tanker tonnage of about one million tons available to Britain with the consent of the Norwegian Government (Document Number Raeder-68).
In the winter of 1939-40, information took on a more definite form concerning espionage missions given by the British and French Secret Service to Norwegian agents and British harbor consulates for the purpose of reconnoitering landing facilities and examination of Norwegian railroads with regard to their capacity, particularly the Narvik line, and missions concerning information about land and sea airports in Norway. From the fact that the information from two different sources, namely, the naval attache in Oslo and Admiral Canaris, checked and became more and more certain during the period from October to December 1939, the danger indicated appeared to keep increasing.
In addition, in December 1939 Quisling and Hagelin sent to Rosenberg-entirely independently of the sources of information which had existed up to that time-the same and similar information concerning the landing intentions of the Allies. This did not go to Raeder for the sole reason that Raeder did not know either Quisling or Hagelin at that time. Since the question involved was a purely military-strategic one, Rosenberg asked Raeder to discuss things with Quisling so that Raeder could examine the military-technical possibilities in consideration of the fact the aggression by the Allies in Scandinavia must be expected according to the information received. This is evident from the letter from Rosenberg to Raeder of 13 December 1939, which I submitted as Exhibit Number Raeder-67. Raeder considered it his duty from the purely military point of view to inform Hitler, with whom he had not discussed this question in the meantime, that coinciding information had since been received from Canaris, the naval attache in Oslo, and Quisling. Hitler asked to speak with Quisling personally, whereupon he decided, in order to meet the threat, to make the necessary preparations for an eventual preventive measure, namely, the occupation of Norway (Document C-64, Exhibit Number GB-86).
The final decision was still deferred, and further information was awaited as to whether the danger appeared to increase. This caution and delay will readily be understood in the case of Raeder. As I have already observed, Raeder would have preferred to see the neutrality of Norway maintained, especially since he was against any
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conquest just for the sake of conquest. He knew, on the other hand, that an occupation required the commitment of the whole Navy, thus involving the fate of the entire Navy, and that the loss of at least a third of the whole fleet had to be reckoned with. It must surely be clear how difficult, from such political and strategic viewpoints, such a decision was for a responsible man and soldier.
Unfortunately, during the first months of the year 1940, the reports multiplied and kept becoming more certain. In March 1940 uncommonly many English-speaking persons could be seen in Oslo, and Raeder received very serious and credible information about impending measures by the Allies against Norway and Sweden. As far as landing intentions were concerned, Narvik, Trondheim, and Stavanger were mentioned. In this manner the military planning actually was not undertaken until February and March 1940, and final instructions were issued to the Wehrmacht only in March 1940. In addition, numerous violations of neutrality occurred in March 1940, which have been collected in the War Diary (Documents Raeder-81 and 82), and also the mine-laying in Norwegian territorial waters at the beginning of April.
The Prosecution has put in only a few documents against this comprehensive informative material, according to which the German Minister in Oslo, Breuer, did not look upon the danger as being so great but believed that British activities, which he also reported, tended merely to provoke Germany into opening war operations in Norwegian waters (Documents Number D-843, Exhibit GB-466; D-844, Exhibit GB-467; D-845, Exhibit GB-486).
Baron Weizsacker's point of view in cross-examination was that at first he did not consider the danger so great either; but he admitted that later on the facts proved that he and Breuer were wrong, while Raeder had been right in his apprehension.
This objective accuracy of the opinion of Admiral Raeder, and of the information on which he based his opinion, is shown in the various documents submitted by me and accepted by the Court.
Since 16 January 1940, the French High Command had been working on a plan which had in view, among other things, the occupation of harbors and airfields on the west coast of Norway. The plan provided, in addition, for an eventual extension of operations to Sweden and occupation of the mines of Gallivare (Document Number Raeder-79). Efforts have been made to justify this plan by stating that it was elaborated solely to help Finland against the Soviet Union.
To begin with, it might be argued in contradiction to this that an action in support of Finland does not justify any occupation of Norwegian territory. Moreover, the documents show that it was not only a question of altruistic measures in favor of Finland.
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During the inter-Allied military conferences on 31 January and 1 February, which preceded the meeting of the Supreme Council on 5 February, the question of direct help for Finland was relegated by the British to second place; they showed themselves to be determined supporters of an enterprise against the mines of northern Sweden. This is confirmed by General Gamelin in a note of 10 March 1940 (Document Raeder-79), and he adds that this opinion obtained the majority vote in the Supreme Council and that preparations for the Scandinavian expedition should be started immediately.
And so it came about that the Franco-British fighting forces had been ready for transportation since the first days of March; according to Gamelin, the leadership of the proposed operations in Scandinavia was in the hands of the British High Command. Gamelin
adds finally that the Scandinavian plans must be resolutely pursued further in order to save Finland-I quote, '`or at least to lay hands on the Swedish ore and the northern harbors."
Lord Halifax informed the Norwegian Minister on 7 February that Britain wished to obtain certain bases on the Norwegian coast in order to stop German transports of ore from Narvik (Document Raeder-97). By mid-February, British and French General Staff officers were, in agreement with the Norwegian authorities, inspecting landing places (Document Raeder-97). According to a report by the German Legation in Stockholm, dated 16 February 1940, British intentions in this respect were to land troops simultaneously at Bergen, Trondheim, and Narvik. On 21 February 1940 Daladier communicated to the French Ambassador in London, Corbin, that the occupation of the most important Norwegian ports and the landing of the first body of the Allied fighting forces would give Norway and Sweden a feeling of security; and he goes on to say that this operation must be planned and executed at shortest notice, "independently of Finland's call for assistance." In the event of this demarche meeting with refusal by Norway, which was likely, the British Government was to take note of the Norwegian attitude and immediately seize control of the bases it needed for the safeguarding of its interests, doing so in the form of a "surprise operation." Whether Sweden would refuse passage through to Finland did not appear important; what is being emphasized is rather-and I quote:
". . .the advantage of having secured a dominating position against Germany in the North, interrupted the sea transport of Swedish ore, and brought the Swedish ore districts within range of our aviation" (Documents Raeder-97 and 80).
On 27 February 1940, Churchill declared in the House of Commons that he was "tired of considering the rights of neutrals" (Document Raeder-97).
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It is interesting to note that unanimity was achieved in the sixth session of the Supreme Council on 28 March 1940-I quote:
"Every endeavor on the part of the Soviet Government to obtain from Norway a position on the Atlantic coast runs counter to the vital interests of the Allies and results in appropriate counteraction" (Document Raeder-83).
The view thereby adopted by the Supreme Council with reference to the vital interests of the Allies coincides exactly with the legitimate notions of the "right of self-defense" as presented by me and is in complete contradiction to the interpretation of international law propounded by the Prosecution.
The ultimate execution of the operation in Norway, that is, the landing and the construction of bases, was decided on 28 March 1940 between the authoritative British and French offices. This date was indicated at a session of the French War Council by the French Prime Minister (Document Raeder-59); and General Gamelin added that he had, on 29 March, impressed upon General Ironside the necessity of having everything ready for a swift occupation of the Norwegian ports. He said he had also informed Mr. Churchill to the same effect on the occasion of a visit to Paris.
One day later, 30 March, Churchill declared on the radio-I quote, "It would not be just if, in a life-and-death struggle, the Western Powers adhered to legal agreements" (Document Raeder-97).
On 2 April 1940 at 1912 hours, London notified Paris by telegram that the first transport was "to sail on J. 1. day," and that J. 1. day was in principle 5 April (Document Raeder-85). On 5 April, Earl de la Warr stated that neither Germany nor the neutrals could be certain that "England would allow her hands to be tied behind her back in complying with the letter of the law" (Document Raeder-97).
The British Minister of Labor, Ernest Brown, on 6 April 1940 declared that neither Germany nor the neutrals could count on "the Western Powers' adhering to the letter of international law" (Document Raeder-97).
On the same day-this was one day after the laying of mines by British combat forces in Norwegian territorial waters-a secret British operational order was given "concerning preparations for the occupation of the northern Swedish ore field from Narvik" (Document Racder-88).
In this order it was specified that the mission of the "Avon" Force consisted first of all in "securing the port of Narvik and the railway to the Swedish border." It was added that it was the intention of the commander "to advance into Sweden and to occupy the Gallivare ore fields and important points of that territory as soon
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as an opportunity occurs," a formulation strikingly reminiscent of the words in the Prosecution Document L-79, "to attack Poland at the first suitable opportunity."
The original plan of dispatching the first transport to Norway on 5 April was changed; for on the evening of 5 April the British High Command informed the Commander-in-Chief of the French Navy that-I quote:
". . . the first British convoy could not depart before 8 April which with respect to the time schedule established would mean that the first French contingent would leave its embarkation port on 16 April" (Document Raeder-91).
To complete the story it may be mentioned that the Norwegian operation was designated by the Allies by the camouflage name of "Stratford Plan," while the German Norwegian operation was referred to by the camouflage name of "Weser Exercise" (Weserubung) (Document Raeder-98).
All these facts go to show that, since the autumn of 1939, preparations for possible action in Norway were made by studying landing possibilities, et cetera. As from January and February 1940 the danger of an occupation of bases in Norway by the Allies was imminent. In March 1940 the execution of the scheme was ultimately decided upon and the departure of the first convoy was scheduled for 5 April. Simultaneously, mine-laying was carried out in the Norwegian territorial waters and troops were at the same time concentrated in British and French ports for the Norwegian operation. Thus factual evidence of imminent neutrality violations existed from the point of view of international law; and neutrality violations had indeed been already committed to a certain extent, as by mine-laying. This was the point where Germany, in accordance with the international concept of the right of self-defense, was entitled to resort to equivalent countermeasures, that is, to occupy Norway in order to prevent the impending occupation by other belligerent states. It was, in fact, as was shown later, high time; for Germany forestalled the Allies only because the British High Command had postponed the departure of the first convoy, originally scheduled for 5 April. The German operation in Norway must therefore be considered as legitimate according to the principles of international law.
I have the firm conviction that the High Tribunal, in view of the circumstances just presented in connection with existing international law, will conclude that Admiral Raeder, with regard to the occupation of Norway, acted from purely strategic points of view and in due consideration of international legal standards, and accordingly will acquit him of the charge made by the Prosecution.
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With reference to Norway, the Prosecution has moreover charged against Raeder-and also against Doenitz-that a violation of international law is involved in the fact that, according to an order dated 30 March 1940, the Naval Forces were to fly the British ensign until the troops had been landed (Documents C-151, Exhibit GB-91; C-115, Exhibit GB-90).
This too is an error of the Prosecution as regards international law in sea warfare. The Hague Regulations on Land Warfare do expressly forbid the misuse of flags. In sea warfare, on the other hand, the answer to this question according to prevailing international law is definitely that, until hostilities begin, ships may sail with their own or with enemy or neutral flags or with no flags at all. I take the liberty, in this respect, of availing myself of Dr. Mosler's juridical treatment of the question in his opinion (Document Raeder-66), appearing under Item 7, and in particular of his references to legal literature on the subject, according to which the use of a foreign flag is universally considered as a legitimate ruse of war and is allowed and especially condoned by British practice; this is in accordance with the historical precedent when Nelson, in the Napoleonic wars, flew the French flag off Barcelona to lure Spanish ships. This- dispute is, however, superfluous in the present case, because actually these orders to fly the British flag were according to documentary evidence canceled on 8 April, that is to say, prior to the execution of the Norway operation (Document Raeder-89).
In conclusion I wish to emphasize, with reference to the subject of Norway, that after the occupation of Norway Raeder and the German Navy did everything they could to give a friendly character to the relations with Norway, to treat the country and the people decently during the occupation, and to spare them every unnecessary burden. Raeder and the commanding admiral in Norway, Admiral Bohm, moreover endeavored to conclude a peace with Norway guaranteeing Norwegian national interests. Their efforts were frustrated through the creation by Hitler and Himmler of a so-called civil administration under Reich Commissioner Terboven which, unlike the Armed Forces, was linked with the Party, the SS, SD, and Gestapo (Documents Number Raeder-107 and 129). As confirmed by B5hm in his affidavit, Raeder repeatedly intervened with Hitler in favor of treating the Norwegian people well and for an early conclusion of peace and, together with Bohm, proceeded with the utmost vigor against Terboven. Here again, the tragic fact is that the Armed Forces, despite its utmost efforts, was neither able to oppose Hitler's dictatorial methods nor the dictatorial methods employed, with Hitler's knowledge, by such a mediocre Reich Commissioner as Terboven. The Norwegian people who had to suffer
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under the occupation know-and this is the only gratification for Raeder-that the Navy was not the cause of these sufferings. On the other hand, it is interesting to know that the differences which cropped up between Hitler and Raeder with reference to Norway are precisely among the chief motives which ultimately caused Raeder to insist upon his resignation in September 1942. Other motives were that Raeder also had differences with Hitler over France, because here again Raeder urged the conclusion of peace, while Hitler, with his extreme nature, was opposed to conciliatory steps of that kind in occupied territories. Raeder also had differences with Hitler regarding Russia, because he was in favor of observing the German-Russian treaty, and declared himself opposed to breaking the Treaty and going to war with Russia.
THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.
[A recess was taken.]
DR. SIEMERS: I now come to the charge of the Prosecution with regard to a war of aggression against Russia. The charge of the Prosecution on this subject cannot be very well understood. Land warfare only was concerned, so that the Navy did not have to make any preparations, with the exception of a few in the Baltic Sea. The Prosecution itself has furthermore stated that Raeder had been opposed to the war against Russia. The only thing which might be left of the charge of the Prosecution is its claim that Raeder had fundamentally been in favor of the war against Russia also and had only been opposed to Hitler with regard to the time factor. With reference to Document Number C-170 the Prosecution states that Raeder had only recommended the postponement of the war against Russia until after the victory over Britain. In the light of Document C-170 this actually might appear plausible. In reality, however, the case is different, and the true state of affairs has been cleared up by the detailed presentation of evidence. The witness Admiral Schulte-Monting has clearly stated, without being contradicted in cross-examination, that Raeder not only raised objections with regard to the time but that he argued with Hitler about a campaign against Russia and did so for moral reasons and reasons of international law, because he was of the opinion that the NonAggression Pact with Russia as well as the trade agreement should be observed under all circumstances. The Navy was especially interested in deliveries from Russia and always tried to observe the treaties strictly. Besides this basic principle of observing treaties, that is, besides this general reason, Raeder was of the opinion that a war against Russia would also be wrong from the strategic
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standpoint. His own testimony and that of Schulte-Monting show that in September, November, and December 1940 Raeder tried again and again to dissuade Hitler from contemplating a war against Russia. It is correct that in Document C-170 only the strategic justification for his opposition has been recorded. However, this is not at all surprising because in the papers of the Naval Operations Staff naturally only justifications were recorded which were of naval-technical and strategic importance, but not political reasons.
I have already shown that as a general principle Hitler did not permit Raeder, as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy, to intervene in questions concerning foreign policy, that is to say, in things which did not belong in his department. If Raeder did on occasion undertake this contrary to the will of Hitler in cases of special importance, then he could do so only privately, and was then unable to record these conversations in the War Diary. However, he always told everything to his Chief of Staff as his closest confidant. As a result Schulte-Monting could absolutely confirm that Raeder in this case opposed Hitler because of misgivings with regard to morality and international law, and furthermore also employed strategic reasons in the hope of thus being able to bring more influence to bear on Hitler. Schulte-Monting even stated-just like Raeder-that in November the latter had gained the impression, after a discussion, that he had dissuaded Hitler from his plans. I believe that this has clarified the matter, and only the tragic fact remains that Hitler paid just as little attention to Raeder's political objections with regard to Russia as with regard to Norway and France.
A similar situation obtains with regard to the charge of the Prosecution referring to the war of aggression against the United States and the violation of the neutrality of Brazil. Both of these charges are sufficiently refuted within the framework of the evidence, so that I am only going to discuss them very briefly.
According to the statement of the Prosecution, Raeder somehow collaborated in the plan to induce Japan to attack the United States. As a matter of fact no naval strategic conferences were held between Japan and Raeder. Raeder always held the conviction that a war against the United States must be avoided just as much as a war against Russia. This attitude is understandable seeing that he had always held the opinion that Hitler should under no circumstances wage a war against Britain. Since the war against Britain had now come about, it was Raeder's duty as Commander-in-Chief of the Navy to use all his strength to fight successfully against Britain. Raeder knew the limitations of the fighting capacity of the Navy; and it was, therefore, quite out of the question that he should have collaborated in an extension of the naval war, considering, as he did, that the conduct of a war against Britain was already a too
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difficult task. Document C-152 submitted by the Prosecution therefore mentions only a proposition that Japan should attack Singapore and is based on the assumption that the United States should be kept out of the war. This suggestion made to Hitler that Japan should attack Singapore was correct in every respect. After all, we were at war with England, and Raeder was forced to try to concentrate all his forces against that country. He was thus justified in suggesting that Japan-as Germany's ally-should attack England. Moreover this, the only discussion by Raeder, was not held until 18 March 1941, while Hitler had already in his Directive Number 24 of 5 March 1941 established the guiding principle that Japan must attack Singapore, which he considered a key position of Britain (Document C-175).
I should like to interpose one sentence here. It can be seen from the report by General Marshall that no common plan had been found to exist between Germany and Japan.
As Schulte-Monting has affirmed, Raeder was just as surprised by the sudden attack by Japan on Pearl Harbor as every other German. The attempt of the Prosecution to discredit this statement during the cross-examination of Schulte-Monting by introducing a telegram from the naval attache in Tokyo to Berlin, dated 6 December 1941 (Document D-872), failed. In the first place Raeder probably only received this telegram after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December had already started; and besides, Pearl Harbor is not mentioned at all in the telegram.
The charge of the Prosecution with regard to Brazil has been refuted just as effectively because, after my statements during the hearing of evidence, the Prosecution did not revert to this point in any of the cross-examinations of Raeder, Schulte-Monting and Wagner. The charge was that, according to Jodl's diary, the Naval Operations Staff authorized and approved the use of arms against Brazilian warships and merchant vessels fully 2 months before the outbreak of war between Germany and Brazil (Document 1807-PS).
Apart from the testimony of witnesses, this case is refuted by documents, namely, the complete excerpt from Jodl's diary which I submitted as Exhibit Number Raeder-115, as well as by Documents Number Raeder-116 to 118. These documents reveal that Brazil had violated the rules of neutrality by permitting the United States to make use of Brazilian airfields as a base for attacks on German and Italian U-boats. The Brazilian Air Ministry had furthermore officially announced that attacks had been made by the Brazilian Air Force. Considering such conduct, which is against all the rules of neutrality, the demand of the Naval Operations Staff for armed action against Brazilian vessels is justified. So here again
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the Prosecution failed to prove Raeder to have committed a crime or even a violation of international law.
The Prosecution has very painstakingly submitted an exceedingly large amount of material, and the wealth of detail called for great care in the submission of evidence for the Defense. I have endeavored to deal with all the charges in the submission of evidence or in my final plea, and have made efforts to show as clearly as possible that none of them, partly on factual, partly on legal grounds, comply with the requirements of a criminal case within the meaning of this Charter. Insofar as I have not, in spite of my desire for great exactitude, dealt with certain documents, it was because they seemed to me of small importance and in any case of no importance in criminal law; for instance, the many cases in which Raeder was only mentioned because-without officially taking any part-he received a copy of the documents for routine reasons. It would have been tedious to go into such recurrent cases, even if the Prosecution reiterated these formal indications, so that one was often tempted to recall the saying of Napoleon that repetition is that turn of speech which acts as the best evidence.
I further believe that in my final plea for Admiral Raeder I may forego argumentation regarding genuine war crimes, the crimes against humanity, since I am unable to establish any connection between these and Raeder from the material submitted by the Prosecution. Also no particular charge is made against Raeder in this connection, with the exception of the two cases connected with the Commando Order, namely, the shooting of two soldiers in Bordeaux and the shooting of the British soldier Evans, who was made a prisoner by the SD on the Swedish border after he had previously participated in the midget submarine attack on the Tirpitz. Thus far the charge has been refuted by testimony insofar as it concerns the Navy. Both cases did not come, or came only later, to the knowledge of the Naval Operations Staff-just before Raeder's departure. In both cases action was taken on the basis of the Commando Order by Hitler himself or by the SD without the knowledge and will of the Naval Operations Staff; and what is most important, in both cases the documents of the Prosecution showed that these soldiers were in civilian clothes and, therefore, were not entitled to the protection of the Geneva Convention (Document Number D-864, Exhibit GB-457 and Document UK-57, Exhibit GB-164).
All the other criminal facts which the Prosecution submitted, especially applying to the East, ~ need not deal with, as Raeder did not participate in them. I hope that here also I shall have the approval of the Court in mentioning the handling of the Katyn case, in which the Court pointed out that Raeder was not involved
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and therefore refused to allow me to act as defense counsel in this connection; from this I draw the legal conclusion that Raeder cannot even by implication through the conspiracy be considered as burdened with these criminal facts, since he did not know of these events and had nothing to do with them.
The case for the Prosecution is founded on a desire to see its basic theory accepted and acknowledged, namely, the conception that so many crimes cannot have emanated from the will of a single individual but rather that they result from a conspiracy, a plot, involving many persons. These conspirators could logically, in the first place, only have been Hitler's own collaborators, that is to say, the real National Socialists. Since however, Hitler wished to achieve and did achieve concrete results of military and economic import, something peculiar transpired: There were no specialists among the National Socialists for these tasks. Most of the National Socialist collaborators had not previously followed a trade providing technical education. Hitler, therefore, despite his desire to have only National Socialists around him, took on as key people in particular fields specialists who were not National Socialists, such as for instance Neurath for politics, and Schacht for economics; and for military tasks, Fritsch for the Army and Raeder for the Navy. The Prosecution followed this process from the angle of its conspiracy theory, without paying attention to the fact that these people, not being National Socialists, could in no way be counted among the conspirators and without taking into account that Hitler used these non-National Socialists only as technicians in a well-defined field, and only as long as it seemed absolutely necessary to him; therefore he agreed to the departure of these men, who were essentially not in sympathy with him, as soon as the differences between them seemed unbridgeable, which was bound to happen sooner or later with each of them, depending on the particular field. involved.
By this all-embracing conception of the idea of conspiracy and by this extension of the Prosecution's fight to non-National Socialists, the Prosecution abandoned the basic concept formerly propagated abroad, namely, that of fighting National Socialism but not against the whole of Germany-two ideas which at no time and in no place have been really identical, as the Prosecution now tries to make out. I do believe that thereby the Prosecution is also going back on President Roosevelt's basic idea.
Yet another factual and legal point of view has not been taken into consideration by the Prosecution. I mean the concept of the division of competence under state law, that is to say the subdivision into individual departments. This division of competence, founded on the idea of division of labor, is essentially separative
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in character; it divides the field of work according to local, functional, and technical points of view. Thereby it defines positively the limits within which each division is to become active, and at the same time it defines negatively the boundaries of such activity by specifying which problems no longer concern the agencies in question, that is to say, where they must not exercise any official activity.
In a democracy additional contacts exist by virtue of general Cabinet meetings and through the Prime Minister, the Reich President, or the Reich Chancellor, as the case may be. In a dictatorship it is different, particularly if the dictator, as was the case with Hitler in the National Socialist State, exploits the segregation of the various departments with extreme skill and sees to it that they are kept as isolated as possible, with the result that all power of decision rests finally with him as the dictator, who may even play off one department against the other. The strict partitioning into governmental departments as carried out in the National Socialist State in itself refutes the concept of conspiracy and renders it extremely difficult for the individual to exceed the limits of his own department in any manner.
This significance may be illustrated by the following example: The maintenance of political relations with other states, the contracting or cancellation of agreements or alliances with other states, the declaration of war and conclusion of peace, are matters within the jurisdiction of the authority directing foreign affairs; but they are not within the jurisdiction of the agencies concerned with domestic tasks, such as for instance the Reich Finance Administration, Justice, or the Military.
Thus, since the decision concerning war and peace is not a matter for the military, the military has to accept the decisions made by the political leadership, decisions which have a binding material effect on the military authorities. The military commander must assume for his department the consequences resulting from the decision. As soon as war is declared, the military forces must fight. They do not bear any responsibility for the war, since they were not able to take part in the decision that war should be declared. Consequently, for an army the concept of war of aggression exists in the strategic sense only. Aside from that, any war it may be obliged to wage is, to the army, simply war, regardless of how it may be qualified legally (Article 45 of the Reich Constitution).
Responsibility, from the point of view of state law and criminal law, is in proportion to the extent of jurisdiction. Therefore, if the commander-in-chief of a branch of the Armed Forces is responsible solely for the waging of war, though not for the causes leading to
war, his responsibility in respect to a strategic plan must be confined to the plan as such, but not to the possible origin of the war for which the strategic plan was worked out.
This officially and legally important segregation of governmental departments and the distribution of authority was, in the interest of strengthening his own power in a particularly emphatic manner, carried out by Hitler in many domains, such as for instance the creation of the "Delegate for the Four Year Plan," whose field of work should have belonged to the Ministry of Economics; the creation of Reich Commissioners in the occupied territories, whose activity really should have come under military administration; and, finally, a fact of interest in the Raeder case, the very precise delimitation of the three branches of the Armed Forces and the elimination of the Reich Defense Minister or Minister of War who held the three branches of the Armed Forces together and unified them. The greater the number of governmental departments became, the stronger Hitler became as dictator, being the only person with authority over all the innumerable agencies. But along with this the official as well as the legal responsibility for strategic plans on the part of any one individual department decreased; in this instance, that of the Navy.
Consequently, the commander-in-chief of a branch of the Armed Forces, for instance the Navy, can in case of strategic planning only be responsible for the planning of naval strategy; he is not afforded an over-all picture of the total plan. The total plan was discussed nowhere; politically and militarily it was in Hitler's hands exclusively, because he alone was the center where all threads, all activities of the individual departments joined.
May I add a sentence here and remind you that, for instance, in the case of the Norway action even Goering was not informed until March 1940, which is one proof of the extreme segregation of the individual departments within the Armed Forces. In addition, purely strategic planning as such cannot be criminal, because it is customary in every country and because in every country the military commander of a branch of the Armed Forces does not and cannot know to what end the political leadership will use the plan prepared by him, whether for a war of aggression or a defensive war.
The documents submitted in my document books prove convincingly that the military agencies in Allied countries as well as in Germany worked out strategic plans in the same manner, for the same areas, and at the same times, namely, in regard to Norway, Belgium (Documents Number Raeder-33 and 34), Holland, Greece, Romania; moreover, the Allied plans included the destruction of the Romanian oil fields and especially of the oil sources in the Caucasus
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(Document Number Ribbentrop-221 and Number Raeder-41). Particularly the plans concerning the Caucasus on the part of the Supreme Council, that is, the combined British and French General Staff, show the correctness of the statements. The Supreme Council would certainly refuse to be made politically responsible for these strategic plans, although the Soviet Union was still neutral at the time and the execution of the plans was to strike a blow not only at an enemy country, Germany, but also at a neutral, the Soviet Union, as the documents show.
The similarity of the documents concerning such plans is absolutely convincing and shows a strong parallel trend. May I point in this connection to statements I made here on occasion of the comprehensive discussion regarding the relevance and admissibility of the documents submitted by me; may I point, in addition, to Document Number Raeder-130, the letter of the Foreign Office, in which submission of the British Admiralty files is refused but in which the plans in regard to Norway and the whole of Scandinavia are admitted, with the remark that the plan was not put into effect, which fact was due only to Germany's having forestalled the execution of the plan.
Anyone is entitled to be a pacifist and, therefore, basically opposed to the military. However, one must be consistent and take a stand not only against German military force but against any military force. One may condemn the fact that the military, as the operational authority, prepares military plans; and one may for the future insist that such planning shall be punishable. But in that case not only German military planning, but foreign military planning also must be punishable.
These points show that the Prosecution misjudges both actual and legal conditions in desiring to make Raeder responsible for political decisions, although he had nothing to do with them but always worked simply as a soldier. Just as there could be no suggestion 130 years ago of bringing before a court an admiral of Napoleon, the dictator, it is impossible now to condemn an admiral of Hitler, the dictator. With dictators, in particular-and this the Prosecution overlooks-not only the power and the influence of a military commander diminishes, but his responsibility must also diminish to the same extent, for the dictator will have seized all power and with it all responsibility-especially if he is possessed of such an extraordinary will and such immense power as Hitler. The French prosecutor stated literally and very aptly on 7 February 1946 before this Tribunal: '`Hitler was actually the incarnation of all will."
The resulting strength and power has not been sufficiently appreciated by the Prosecution, and has certainly not been taken
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into consideration in the presentation of the facts and the legal conclusions. How great this power is, Gustave le Bon shows in his famous book Psychology of the Masses (published by Alfred Kroner) in the chapter entitled, "The Leaders of the Masses." I quote from it:
"Within the class of leaders quite a strict division can be made. The energetic people with strong wills but without perseverance belong to the one kind; the people with a strong, persevering will belong to the other kind, which is much rarer.... The second class, those with a persevering will, exercise a much greater influence in spite of their less brilliant appearance."
Hitler belongs to this second class of leaders, who, in accordance with this quotation, exercised an immense influence while, on the other hand, he was definitely unimpressive in his brown uniform. Gustave le Bon continues:
"The unyielding will which they possess is an exceedingly rare and exceedingly powerful attribute which subdues everything. One does not always realize what a strong and persistent will can achieve Nothing can resist it, neither nature, nor gods, nor men."
These words make it clear enough that Raeder could not resist either.
Accordingly, only the question remains: Is it ever a soldier's duty to revolt-to resort to open mutiny? This 'question will be denied by every commander all over the world and likewise by every other person with a sole exception, namely, if it concerns the case of a dictator commanding the commission of a crime, the criminality of which is recognized by the military commander himself. Accordingly Raeder could be made responsible for a military crime only, but not for a political one, because for the political crime the dictator himself must answer. When the Prosecution came to the opposite conclusion regarding Raeder, this was due-as I have already emphasized in my introduction-only to their misconception of the actual and juridical facts; they regarded Raeder as politician and soldier. But he was a soldier only. He lived for the Navy alone, for the welfare of the Navy, for which he is now equally prepared to bear responsibility to the full extent. He led the Navy along uniform lines and, aided by his officer corps, taught it those decent views and that form of chivalrous fighting which humanity expects of a soldier. It must not be allowed to happen that, as a result of the deeds of a Hitler and his National Socialism, the officers and soldiers of this Navy be defamed by hearing their highest-ranking officer declared a criminal. From a historical viewpoint Raeder may be guilty,
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because he, like many others within the country and abroad, did not recognize or see through Hitler and did not have the strength to resist the dynamic strength of a Hitler; but such an omission is no crime. What Raeder did or left undone in his life occurred in the belief that he was acting correctly and that as a dutiful soldier he had to act in such a way.
Raeder is a highly esteemed officer who is no criminal; and he cannot be a criminal, since all his life he has lived honorably and as a Christian. A man who believes in God does not commit crimes, and a soldier who believes in God is not a war criminal.
I therefore ask the High Tribunal to acquit Admiral Dr. Erich Raeder on all points of the Indictment.
PRESIDENT: I call on Dr. Sauter for the Defendant Von Schirach.
DR. SAUTER: Gentlemen of the Tribunal, Baldur von Schirach, who at that time was Reich Youth Leader, in 1936 welcomed the guests to the Olympic Games in Berlin with the following words:
"Youth throws a bridge across all frontiers and seas! I call upon the Youth of the World and through them, upon Peace!"
And Baldur von Schirach, then Gauleiter of Vienna, said to Hitler in 1940: "Vienna cannot be conquered with bayonets, but only with music."
Those two utterances are characteristic of the nature of this defendant. It is the task of the Defense to examine the evidence produced in this Trial for the purpose of ascertaining whether the same Baldur von Schirach, who expressed such thoughts, really committed those crimes against law and humanity with which he is charged by the Prosecution.
Schirach is the youngest defendant here. He is also, of all the defendants, the one who was by far the youngest when joining the Party, which he did when he was not yet 18. Those facts in themselves are perhaps of some significance in judging his case. When still at school he came under the spell of rising National Socialism; he was particularly attracted by the Socialist idea, which had already in his country school recognized no difference between the sons of fathers of different classes and professions; those boys around Schirach saw in the popular movement of the twenties in Germany a promise of the resurgence of our fatherland from the aftermath of the lost Great War into a happy future; and fate willed it that as early as 1925, when he was seventeen, Schirach came into personal contact with Hitler in Weimar, Goethe's home. Hitler's personality made a fascinating impression on young Schirach, as he himself admitted; the program for the National Community (Volksgemeinschaft), which Hitler had evolved at that time, met with Schirach's wholehearted enthusiasm, because he
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thought he saw reproduced therein on a full-size scale that which he had personally experienced in a small way in the comradeship of the country school and in his youth organization. To him and his comrades Hitler appeared as the man who would open for the younger generation the road into the future; of him this younger generation had hopes for its prospects of work, its prospects of a secure existence, its prospects of a happy life. Thus the young man became a convinced National Socialist; this fact was the result of the environment in which he had spent his youth and which formed a soil only too fertile for the growth of that ideology which young Schirach embraced because at that period he held it to be the right one. This environment of his childhood and a vast amount of one-sided political literature, which the young man devoured in his thirst for knowledge, made of him, while still an inexperienced youth, also an anti-Semite. He certainly did not become an anti-Semite in the sense of those fanatics who ultimately did not shrink even from acts of violence and pogroms, of those who finally created an Auschwitz and murdered millions of Jews; but an anti-Semite in the moderate sense, who would merely curb Jewish influence in the government of the state and in cultural life but for the rest would leave untouched the freedom and rights of Jewish fellow citizens and who never thought of exterminating the Jewish people. At least that is the conception of Hitler's anti-Semitism which young Schirach evolved during those years.
That this was really Schirach's opinion is also substantiated by the statement which Schirach made here on the morning of 24 May 1946, when he described without reservation the crimes committed by Hitler as a shameful episode in German history, as a crime which fills every German with shame; that statement in which he openly states that Auschwitz must signify the end of any and every racial and anti-Semitic policy. That statement here in this courtroom came from the bottom of the heart of the Defendant Schirach; it was the result of the terrible disclosures which this Trial brought to him also, and Schirach made this statement here openly before the public in order to bring back German youth from a wrong path to the road of justice and tolerance.
Gentlemen, I would now like to bring to your attention the more important accusations which have been raised against Schirach, and the major results which the evidence has produced in the various points. The Defendant Schirach is first of all accused of the fact that before the seizure of power, that is, before the year 1933, he actively promoted the National Socialist Party and the youth organization affiliated with it and that he thereby contributed to the rise of the Party to power. He had been, as stated
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in the trial brief, a close and abject follower of Hitler; he had stood in blind loyalty to Hitler and the latter's National Socialist world of thinking; and he had, as leader of the student's league, led the students ideologically and politically to National Socialism and won them over to it.
All this, if Your Honors please, is not denied by Schirach in any manner. He has done what he is being accused of in this respect; this he confesses openly, and for this he naturally takes responsibility' The only thing which he denies with regard to this, and all the more emphatically with regard to the later period, is the accusation that he participated in a conspiracy. Schirach himself pointed out that the Leadership Principle and dictatorship in their character and their theory are absolutely incompatible with the idea of a conspiracy, and a conspiracy appears to him a logical impossibility if many millions of members are to be included and when its existence and aims lie exposed before the country concerned as well as before the world. We furthermore know from the results of this Trial that Hitler, aside from Bormann and Himmler, did not have a single friend or adviser with whom he discussed his plans and aims; on the contrary he carried the Leadership Principle to the furthest extreme. He dispensed with all advisory meetings or discussions which might have affected his decisions in any way, reaching his decisions all by himself without even listening to the opinion of those closest to him. For him it was a matter of orders on his own part, and unconditional obedience on that of the others. I wish to refrain from further statements about that chapter, but that is what the "conspiracy" really looked like; and all of us who have witnessed this Trial would never have felt this ultra-radical application of the Leadership Principle to be possible had not all the defendants and all the witnesses familiar with the facts, in complete agreement and without a single exception, presented the same picture to us over and over again.
Now Schirach is not denying at all that already in his very early years he came completely under the influence of Hitler, that he placed himself with his whole young personality at the service of these ideas, and that at the time, as stated quite correctly in the Indictment, he was devoted to Hitler with unconditional loyalty.
If this was a crime on the part of young Schirach, a crime which millions of older, more experienced, mature Germans have committed with him, then you, as his judges, may condemn him for this if our code of law furnishes a legal basis for it. That would be but a further disappointment in addition to the many others which he has been experiencing for years. Schirach knows today that he gave loyal support unto the end to a man who did not
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deserve it; and he also knows today that the ideas, about which he was enthusiastic in his young years and for which he sacrificed himself, led in practice to ends of which he himself had never dreamed.
But even the Schirach of today, purged by many bitter experiences, cannot see any criminal act in the activity of his younger years which he carried out in good faith, together with millions of other Germans, for Hitler and his Party. For the Party at that time appeared quite legal to him; Schirach never had any doubt that it also came into power by legal means. The seizure of power by the Party, the appointment of Hitler as Reich Chancellor by Reich President Von Hindenburg, the winning of the majority of the people for the Party by repeated elections, all this confirmed to young Schirach again and again the legality of the movement he had joined. If today he were to be punished because he acknowledged as his Fuehrer this same Hitler whom millions of Germans and all the countries of the world recognized as legal head of the State, Schirach would never be able to acknowledge such a decision as being just. In spite of the severe judgment which he himself has pronounced in this courtroom on Hitler according to his personal conviction, he would consider himself a victim of his political convictions if he were to be sentenced because, as a young enthusiastic man, he joined the National Socialist Party and collaborated in its construction and seizure of power. At the time he did not look upon that as a crime but from his standpoint considered it his patriotic duty.
The second and by far more important accusation which has been raised against the Defendant Von Schirach is to the effect that he, as Reich Youth Leader in the years 1932 to 1940, to quote the Indictment literally, "poisoned the thought of youth with Nazi ideology and especially trained it for aggressive war." Schirach has always contested this claim. emphatically, and this claim has not been substantiated by the results of the evidence either.
The 1aNv on the Hitler Youth of 1936 described Schirach's task as Reich Youth Leader as being "to educate youth, outside the parental home and outside school, physically, intellectually, and morally for service to the people and to the national community in the spirit of National Socialism through the Hitler Youth movement and its leader," that is, the Defendant Von Schirach. This was the program. This program is repeated word for word in the enactment decree of 1939, which was postponed for so long-3 years-because Schirach did not want to introduce compulsory membership until the movement already practically included the entire German youth on the basis of voluntary membership, so that future joining by compulsion would exist on paper only.
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The Hitler Youth program, as it was formulated by Schirach In his speeches and writings-and no other program of the Hitler Youth exists-does not contain a single word which would point toward military education of youth, much less an education in aggressive warfare; nor does in practice the education of youth, in Schirach's opinion, in any way give evidence of a military education of German youth for such a purpose. In that respect the point was stressed by the Prosecution that the Hitler Youth movement was organized in various detachments and divisions. That is true, although the designations listed by the Prosecution are not correct and although they have not the slightest reference to military formations. But in the last analysis every youth movement the World over will show a classification into smaller or larger units; each of these units naturally will also need a name and some responsible leader. As in the other countries, so also in the German Hitler Youth the leader of the unit was discernible by some sign of his rank, be it a leader's cord, stars, or other insignia of rank. This naturally has nothing to do with the military character of youth education.
From personal familiarity with the practice in foreign countries Schirach knows that foreign youth organizations, in Switzerland as well as in France and other countries, have similar classifications and similar insignia, although it never occurred to us so far to make that a reason for considering such foreign youth organizations as military associations.
It was furthermore stressed that formations of male youth in Germany were also given training in shooting. That is also correct but equally proves very little, in the opinion of Schirach, because the shooting instruction for the Hitler Youth organization took place, without exception, with small-bore rifles, in other words, with a type of short, light target rifle which is nowhere in the world considered as a military weapon and which is not even mentioned in the enumeration of military weapons in the Versailles Treaty. The Hitler Youth movement in Germany did not possess a single military weapon, no infantry rifle or machine gun, no power-driven airplane, no cannon or tank, throughout its whole existence. After all, when speaking OI military training, then such training would primarily have had to take place with military weapons such as are used in modern warfare. To be sure, as has been established in the cross-examination of Schirach, in order to give added importance to his office, a certain Dr. Stellrecht, the technical adviser on shooting instruction in the leadership of the Reich Youth movement attempted to ascribe a certain special importance to this particular branch of youth training. Schirach, however, was able to show without being refuted that for this
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very reason differences of opinion arose between him and this technical adviser and that he therefore finally dismissed Dr. Stellrecht because he, Schirach, opposed any development which might have tended toward military training of youth. In any case, this very Dr. Stellrecht, who was produced by the Prosecution as a witness against Schirach, nevertheless for his part admitted that "not a single boy in Germany was trained in handling weapons of war" and that "not one boy was given a military weapon." That is, word for word, the testimony of Stellrecht.
Also of importance in considering these questions is the fact that Schirach, as a matter of principle, refused to permit young people to be trained by active officers or former officers because he considered these persons entirely unsuitable to educate young people in that spirit which he envisaged as the goal of his activity. Moreover, neither Schirach nor any of his closer associates were officers before the war; and the same holds true for the overwhelming majority of the high or low ranking HJ leaders subordinate to him.
All these facts are firmly established by the testimony of the Defendant Schirach himself and through depositions made by the witnesses Lauterbacher, Gustav Hoepken, and Maria Hoepken during their examination. For many years these witnesses were Schirach's closest collaborators; they are thoroughly familiar with his views and principles and they have unanimously confirmed that it is entirely incorrect to speak of a military or even premilitary training of the Hitler Youth.
At this point, Gentlemen, I should like to add one thing. I have just mentioned, as a witness, the name Lauterbacher. The Prosecution, during their cross-examination, made an attempt to impugn the credibility of the witness Lauterbacher by asking him, during his interrogation on 27 April 1946, how many people he had hanged publicly and furthermore by charging that he had ordered four or five hundred prisoners from the penitentiary in Hameln to be poisoned or shot. In this connection the American prosecutor had submitted seven affidavits under Exhibit USA-874, among them one by a certain Josef Kramer, who in fact made the assertion in his affidavit that the witness Lauterbacher, who appeared here for Schirach, in his function as Gauleiter of Hanover had given him orders for the murder of the prisoners.
During the Court's session of 27 May 1946, I protested against the use of that affidavit by Kramer and produced, Gentlemen, a newspaper article according to which the witness Kramer, on 2 May 1946, had been sentenced to 7 years' imprisonment by a court of the 5th British Division. Several days ago I submitted as evidence a report from the Rhein-Neckar Zeitung of 6 July 1946 which states
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that the witness Hartmann Lauterbacher in the meantime had been acquitted by the Supreme British Military Court in Hanover. From that it can be seen that the doubts which the Prosecution cast upon the credibility of the witness Lauterbacher and which they based on the affidavit of this Kramer were unfounded.
May I now continue in my presentation on Page 8.
With reference to the promilitary training of the HJ it has also been repeatedly emphasized in rebuttal that the Hitler Youth wore a uniform. That is correct, but proves nothing, for the youth organizations of other countries, too, are accustomed, as is generally known, to wear a common costume, some sort of uniform, without anybody for this reason terming them military or semimilitary organizations; and Schirach and several of his associates have informed me that in many democratic countries, which certainly do not contemplate war, much less a war of aggression, male youth is trained in handling proper military weapons and that every year contests are held in shooting with military rifles.
Why was it that Schirach introduced a uniform for the Hitler Youth-and indeed not only for the boys but also for the girls? We have heard the answer to this from several witnesses. Schirach, I may quote here, saw in the uniform of the boys and in the uniform costume of the girls the "dress of socialism," the "dress of comradeship." Schirach wrote at that time already that the child of the rich industrialist was to wear the same clothes as the child of the miner, the son of the millionaire the same clothes as the son of an unemployed man. The uniform of the Hitler Youth was to be, as Schirach wrote in 1934 in his book The Hitler Youth, the expression of an attitude which did not consider class and property, but only effort and achievement. The uniform of the Hitler Youth was for Schirach, as expressed further in this same book; "not the sign of any militarism, but the symbol of the idea of the Hitler Youth, namely, classless society," in the spirit of the election slogan which he gave the Hitler Youth in 1933: "Through Socialism to the Nation." Schirach remained faithful to the principle expressed in these quotations as long as he was Youth Leader. Thus, in the official publication of the Hitler Youth in 1937, he wrote-I quote word for word:
"The uniform is not the expression of a martial attitude but the dress of comradeship; it overcomes class difference and re-establishes social equality for the child of the most insignificant laborer; the young generation in our new Germany must be united in an inseparable community."
Schirach had this comradeship and this socialism in mind when, in 1934, he describes in his book The Hitler Youth how he conceived this socialism; and I quote again, word for word:
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"Socialism does not mean taking the fruits of his work away from one person in order to give everybody something produced by the work of one individual. Everyone shall work, but everyone shall also harvest the fruits of his work. Nor must one person be allowed to get rich while thousands of others must suffer want for his sake. Whoever exploits his workers and spoliates the community in order to fill his cash box is an enemy of the German people" (Document Schirach-55).
That ends the quotation describing the attitude of Von Schirach at that time.
Schirach has pointed out again and again in his numerous writings, articles, and speeches, which have been collected in the document book and have been submitted to the Tribunal, that, to use his expression, he did not desire any "pseudo-military drill," which would only spoil the joy of the young people' in their movement.
The training of the young people in small-bore shooting was in line with the training in all sports activities and corresponded to the inclination of the boys, in all countries,. who are particularly interested in the sport of shooting. But this training played a very minor role in volume and importance by comparison with the greater aims which Schirach pursued in the Hitler Youth movement, about which not only Schirach but the other witnesses examined give as clear a testimony as the writings and speeches of Von Schirach. These aims of the Hitler Youth education shall be listed here briefly as they have been demonstrated by the presentation of evidence; Schirach is naturally not accused in connection with these other aims of the Hitler Youth education, but one must nevertheless consider and evaluate them when desiring to obtain a total picture of his personality, his activity, and his plans.
Apart from this education of youth in terms of comradeship and of socialism in the sense of overcoming class distinction, Schirach had, as he explained here, primarily four aims in mind:
First the training of youth in the various types of sports, and in connection therewith juvenile health supervision; this branch of youth education took up a very large part of Hitler Youth activities, and the fact that German youth obtained such an unexpected success at the Olympic Games in 1936 was to a certain extent due to the activity of the Hitler Youth leadership in cooperation with the Reich Sports Leader Von Tschammer-Osten.
Another aim was postgraduate training and advancement of working youth and the improvement of the position of adolescent wage earners through youth legislation, particularly by prohibiting
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night work, increasing spare time, granting paid vacations, prohibiting child labor, raising the protected age of adolescents, et cetera. Advanced vocational training was promoted so successfully that finally more than a million boys and girls entered for the annual occupational competitions, and from year to year the average performance in each branch rose very considerably.
A third main aim of youth education was the promotion of love of nature, far away from the dens of iniquity of large cities, through hiking trips and in youth hostels. Thousands of youth homes and youth hostels were built in the course of these years on Schirach's initiative out of the Hitler Youth movement's own funds, in order to get the young people out of the large cities with their temptations and vices and return them to rural life to show them the beauties of the homeland and to afford a vacation to even the poorest child.
But Schirach concentrated his chief attention on the fourth goal of youth education, namely, co-operation with the youth of other nations; and this activity is a particularly suitable test for the question as to whether one can accuse the Defendant Von Schirach of having taken part in the planning of wars of aggression and of having committed crimes against peace. Schirach has told us here on the witness stand that time and again, both in summer and winter of every year, foreign youth groups were the guests of German youth; and it is shown by the documents in Von Schirach's document book that, for instance, already in the year 1936 no less than 200,000 foreign youths received overnight lodgings in German youth hostels, and correspondingly year after year German youth delegations went abroad, especially to England and France, in order to enable young people to get acquainted with and respect one another. Those very endeavors of Schirach's, which would be absolutely incompatible with any intention to prepare wars of aggression, received unreserved recognition abroad before the war. In 1937 in one of the special numbers of the Hitler Youth magazine Wille And Macht dedicated to this task of understanding, which was also published in French and circulated very widely in France and which is quoted here only as an example, the French Prime Minister Chautemps-I have the evidence in the document book-declared his willingness, as head of the French Government, to promote these peaceful meetings.
"I wish"-he wrote-"that the young men of both nations could live every year side by side by the thousands and in this way learn to know, to understand, and to respect each other." And further:
"Our two nations know that an understanding between them
would be one of the most valuable factors for world peace;
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therefore it is the duty of all those on either side of the frontier who have a clear view and human feeling to work for the understanding and rapprochement of both nations. But no one could do it more sincerely and more enthusiastically than the leaders of our wonderful youth, of French and German youth. If they could manage to unite this youth, they would hold in their hands the future of European and human culture" (Document Schirach-110).
The mayor of Versailles of that time wrote in the same spirit to Schirach, ending his appeal in the monthly organ of the Hitler Youth with the words:
"The education of youth in this spirit is one of the most important tasks of the politicians of both our countries" (Document Schirach-111).
The French Ambassador, Francois Poncet, gave credit to Schirach's efforts no less heartily in the same publication under the title "Youth as a Bridge" and concluded his lengthy article with the words:
"French participation enriches German soil. German influence fertilizes the French spirit.... May this exchange develop further. May also the generations which will at some time benefit from it contribute to bringing the two halves of Charlemagne's empire closer and to create between them those relations of mutual respect, harmony, and good comradeship for which both nations are deeply longing, because their instinct tells them that the welfare of European culture depends on it and because they know for certain, when they look, into themselves, that they have many more reasons to respect and admire than to hate each other" (Document Schirach-112).
And Schirach himself answered in the next issue of his monthly publication, which also appeared in French, with an enthusiastic article under the title, "Salute to France!" In it he writes, .for instance:
"The rapprochement of our two peoples is a European task of such urgent necessity that youth has no time to lose in order to work for its achievement."-He then continues-"Youth is the best ambassador in the world; it is disinterested, frank, and without the eternal distrust of which diplomats can frequently not be cured because, to a certain extent, it is their professional disease. However, there must be no propaganda intentions hidden behind youth exchange." -And he concludes-"I consider it now my task to bring about an exchange of views between German and French youth, which must not, on the German side, consist of nice
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statements from me, but of many personal conversations of thousands of young Germans with just as many young Frenchmen. One must believe in youth because they, above all, can achieve a true understanding."
At the end Schirach calls attention to the fact that all higher youth leaders of the German Hitler Youth movement had a short time previously expressed their respect in the name of the young generation of Germany to the French Unknown Warrior by placing a wreath under the Arc de Triomphe, and he concludes with the words:
"The dead of the Great War died while fulfilling their patriotic duty and nobly devoting themselves to the ideal of liberty, and Germans as well as French were always filled with respect for a gallant foe. If the dead respected each other, then the living should try to shake hands. If the returned combat veterans of both nations could become comrades, why should the sons and grandsons not become friends?" (Document Schirach-113.)
These, Gentlemen of the Tribunal, are the words of the same Baldur van Schirach whom the Prosecution tries to brand as a deliberate partner in a Hitlerian conspiracy for war. The Prosecution wants to make a war criminal out of this untiring prophet for international understanding and peace, who is charged with having militarized youth and prepared it, bodily and psychologically, for wars of aggression and of having worked against peace. So far, the Prosecution has not been able to furnish evidence to this effect.
Schirach has written various doctrinal books for youth, which were held against him in the trial brief; he has published a quantity of essays on a vast variety of problems of youth education; his innumerable speeches addressed to youth have been printed; his orders and instructions to youth are available to you and the Prosecution in collected form. Yet it must be concluded that among all these, which constitute his views during the whole of the time when he was active as Reich Youth Leader, not a single item is to be found in which he made inflammatory remarks in favor of war or preached attacks against other countries.
The Prosecution has stated in this very connection that he referred to the "Lebensraum" in his book The Hitler. Youth, which I have repeatedly mentioned, and by so doing adopted as his own a slogan of Hitlerite aggression policy. This claim is incorrect, for the whole book, The Hitler Youth, does not, any more than every other speech and writing of Schirach, contain this word at all. True, he has referred at two points to "Eastern space" in his book, The Hitler Youth, published in 1936; but he quite obviously did
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not in any way employ this term with reference to Polish or SovietRussian territories but to the eastern provinces of the former German Empire, that is to say, to territories which formerly belonged to Germany; they were known to be very thinly populated and well suited for the settlement of excess German population.,
Nowhere has Schirach, I would like to state in conclusion with regard to this topic, at any time up to the outbreak of the second World War expressed the idea that he might wish Germany to conquer foreign territories; neither has he ever uttered the odious slogans of the German "Master Race" or the "Sub-humanity" of other nations; on the contrary, he was always in favor of preserving peace with the neighboring nations and always advocated the peaceful settlement of any conflicts that cropped up out of inevitable clashes of interests. Gentlemen of the Tribunal, had Hitler possessed but a fraction of the love of peace which his Youth Leader preached time and again, then perhaps this war would have been spared us Germans and the whole world.
PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.
[The Tribunal adjourned until 18 July at 1000 hours.]