The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 1999/08/28

THE PRESIDENT: Colonel Storey, I understood from you that

you proposed to make available to the defendants the trial

briefs which contain certain observations upon the documents

put in.

COLONEL STOREY: That is right, sir. They have been, are now,

and will be completed during the week-end, and, as I

understand defence counsel were willing for the briefs to be

furnished in English, and if they want a translation, there

will be German speaking officers in Defendants' Information

Centre at their service. I understood that was agreeable


Sir, while I am on my feet, and in order to obviate some

misapprehension, for the benefit of defence counsel, when we

refer to document numbers as, say, 1850-PS, in many

instances that is a document which is a copy of a citation

or a decree in the Reichsgesetzblatt, and, therefore, is not

a separate document of ours. We have placed In the

Defendants' Information Centre ample copies and sets of the

Reichsgesetzblatt, and I dare say that one-half of the

documents referred to in Major Walllis's presentation will

be found in the Reichsgesetzblatt. I assure your Honour that

over the week-end we will do the utmost to explain to

defence counsel and to make available to them all

information that we have and will do so in the future in


THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. The Tribunal will now adjourn for

ten minutes.

(The Tribunal then took a ten-minute recess, after which

proceedings continued as follows:)

COLONEL STOREY: If your Honour pleases, the next subject to

be presented is the economic preparation for aggressive war,

by Mr. Dodd.

MR. THOMAS J. DODD: May it please the Tribunal, Mr.

President, and Members of the Tribunal: In view of the

discussions which took place just before the recess period,

I believe it proper for me to inform the Tribunal that a

list of the documents to which I shall make reference, has

been lodged in the Defendants' Information Centre, and

photostatic copies of the originals have also been placed

there this morning.

It is my responsibility on behalf of the Chief Prosecutor

for the United States of America to present the proof with

reference to the allegations of the indictment under Section

XV E, on page 6 of the English version of the Indictment,

and particularly beginning with the second paragraph under

E, which is entitled, "The Acquiring of Totalitarian Control

in Germany, Economic, and the Economic Planning and

Mobilisation for Aggressive War." The second paragraph:-

   " 2. They used organisations of German business as

   instruments of economic mobilisation for war.

   3. They directed Germany's economy towards preparation

   and equipment of the military machine. To this end they

   directed finance, capital investment, and foreign trade.

   4. The Nazi conspirators, and in particular the

   industrialists among them, embarked upon a huge

   rearmament programme, and set out to produce and develop

   huge quantities of materials of war and to create a

   powerful military potential."

The fifth paragraph under that same heading A, and the final

one in so far as my responsibility goes this morning, is

that which reads

   "With the object of carrying through the preparation for

   war the Nazi conspirators set up a series of

   administrative agencies and authorities. For example, in

   1936 they established for this purpose the office of the

   Four-Year Plan with the defendant Goering as

   plenipotentiary, vesting it with overriding control over

   Germany's economy. Furthermore, on 26th August, 1939,

   immediately before launching their aggression against

   Poland, they appointed the defendant Funk

   Plenipotentiary for Economics; and on 30th August, 1939,

   they set up the Ministerial Council for the Defence of

   the Reich to act as a War Cabinet."

[Page 127]

I will not take the time of this Tribunal to prove what the

world already knows that the Nazi conspirators rearmed

Germany on a vast scale. I propose to place in evidence the

secret records of the plans and deliberations of the inner

councils of the Nazis, which prove that the reorganisation

of the German government, the financial wizardry of the

defendant Schacht, and the total mobilisation of the German

economy largely under the defendants Schacht, Goering and

Funk, were directed at a single goal - aggressive war.

I should like to hand to the Court at this point the so-

called document book which contains the English translation

of the original German document. I do not make an offer at

this time of these documents in evidence, but hand them to

the Court for the purpose of easing the task of the Court in

following the discussion concerning these documents. I might

say at this point also that I should like to submit at a

little later date a brief for the assistance of the Court

after I have concluded my remarks before it this morning.

The significance of the economic measures adopted and

applied by the conspirators can, of course, be properly

appraised only if they are placed in the larger social and

political context of Nazi Germany. The economic measures

were adopted while the conspirators were, as has already

been shown, directing their vast propaganda to the

glorification of war. They were adopted while the

conspirators were perverting physical training into training

for war. They were adopted while, as my colleagues will

show, these conspirators were threatening to use force and

were planning to use force to achieve their material and

political objects. In short, if your Honour pleases, these

measures constitute in the field of economics and government

administration the same preparation for aggressive war which

dominated every aspect of the Nazi State.

In 1939 and 1940 after the Nazi aggression upon Poland,

Holland, Belgium, and France, it became perfectly clear to

the world that the Nazi conspirators had created probably

the greatest instrument of aggression in history. That

machine was built up in its entirety in a period of less

than one decade. In May of 1939, Major-General George

Thomas, former Chief of the Military-Economic Staff in the

Reich War Ministry, reported that the German Army had grown

from seven infantry divisions in 1933 to thirty-nine

infantry divisions, among them four fully motorised and

three mountain divisions; eighteen corps headquarters; five

panzer divisions; twenty-two machine-gun battalions.

Moreover, General Thomas stated that the German Navy had

greatly expanded by the launching, among other vessels, of

two battleships Of 35,000 tons, four heavy cruisers of

10,000 tons, and other warships; further, that the Luftwaffe

had grown to a point where it had a strength of 260,000 men,

twenty-one squadrons, consisting Of 240 echelons, and thirty-

three anti-aircraft batteries.

He likewise reported that out of the few factories permitted

by the Versailles Treaty there had arisen - and I now quote

him from the document EC 28, which consists of a lecture

which he delivered on the 24th May, 1939 - in the Nazi

Foreign Office: "The mightiest armament industry"; or rather

he reported that out of the few factories permitted by the

Treaty of Versailles there had arisen "the mightiest

armament industry now existing in the world. It has attained

the performances which in part equal the German wartime

performances and in part even surpasses them. Germany's

crude steel production is to-day the largest in the world

after the Americans. The aluminium production exceeds that

of America and of other countries of the world very

considerably. The output of our rifle, machine gun, and

artillery factories is at present larger than that of any

other State."

That quotation, I repeat, was from a document hearing the

lettering "EC" and the number after the dash "28."

These results - the results which General Thomas spoke about

in his lecture in May of 1939--were achieved only by making

preparation for war the dominating objective of German

economy. And, to quote General Thomas from that same

                                                  [Page 128]

speech, he stated: "History will know only a few examples of

cases where a country has directed, even in peace time, all

its economic forces so deliberately and systematically

towards the requirements of war, as Germany was compelled to

do in the period between the two World Wars."*

[NB. This quotation is not taken from the lecture given by

General Thomas in may 1939, but from his manuscript entitled

"Basic Facts for a History of German War Armaments Economy"


That quotation from General Thomas will be found in the

document 2353-PS.

THE PRESIDENT (interposing): Mr. Dodd, it would help me

personally if I knew where, in the document, you were

reading from.

MR. DODD: Very well, Sir. Would you like me to refer back to

number EC-28

THE PRESIDENT: I have it before me, but I haven't the

particular passage in the document which you were reading.

MR. DODD: That document - the one which I have just been

reading, your Honour - is document 2353-PS.

THE PRESIDENT: It is not in EC-28?

MR. DODD: No. It is another quotation from General Thomas,

but from another writing of his.


MR. DODD: The document is 2353-PS. The passage will be found

on the third page of that document.

THE PRESIDENT: I seem to have only two pages of that

document 2353-PS.

MR. DODD: I am sorry; there should be a third page.

THE PRESIDENT: There is a page in between?

MR. DODD: There should be a third page. There may be one

page missing.

THE PRESIDENT: Oh, yes; I have it now.

MR. DODD: The task of mobilising the German economy for

aggressive war began promptly after the Nazi conspirators'

seizure of power. It was entrusted principally to the

defendants, Goering and Funk.

The defendant Schacht, as is well known, was appointed

President of the Reichsbank in March of 1933 and Minister of

Economics in August of 1934. The world did not know,

however, that the responsibility for the execution of this

programme was entrusted to the office of the Four Year Plan

under the defendant Goering.

I should now like to call to your Honour's attention

document EC-408, and I should also like to refer at this

time to another document for your Honour's attention while I

discuss the material, which is number 2261-PS. To continue.

Nor did the world know that the defendant Schacht was

designated Plenipotentiary for the War Economy on 21St May,

1935, with complete control over the German civilian economy

for war production in the Reich Defence Council, established

by a top secret Hitler decree.

I invite your Honour's attention to document 2261-PS, which

I referred to a few minutes ago.

The defendant Schacht recognised that the preparation for

war came before all else for, in a memorandum concerning the

problem of financing rearmament written on 3rd May, 1935, he

stated that his comments were based on the assumption that

the accomplishment of the armament programme--

THE PRESIDENT (interposing): Pardon me, but you referred us

to document 2261.

MR. DODD: Yes, your Honour.

THE PRESIDENT: But you haven't read anything from it.

MR. DODD: I did not; I merely referred the Court to it since

it -

THE PRESIDENT: (interposing): It would help us, I think, if,

when you refer to a document, you refer to some particular

passage in it.

MR. DODD: Very well.

THE PRESIDENT: I think it must be the middle paragraph in

the document: "The Fuehrer has nominated the President of

the Directorate of the Reichsbank, Dr. Schacht."

                                                  [Page 129]

MR. DODD: Yes, that is the paragraph to which I wish to make

reference. If your Honour pleases, I refer to the second

paragraph, or the middle paragraph, which states, in a

letter dated 24th June, 1935, at Berlin:

   "The Fuehrer and Reichs Chancellor has nominated the

   President of the Directorate, Dr. Schacht, to be

   Plenipotentiary General for the War Economy."

I might point out, in addition to the second paragraph, the

last paragraph or the last sentence of that letter, which

reads: "I point out the necessity of strictest secrecy once

more"; the letter being signed, "von Blomberg."

Through Schacht's financial genius monetary measures were

devised to restore German industry to full production; and

through the control of imports and exports, which he devised

under his plan of 1934, German production was channelled in

accordance with the requirements of the German war machine.

I shall, with the Court's permission, later discuss the

details of documentary proof of this assertion.

In 1936, with an eye to the experience in the First World

War, the Nazi conspirators embarked on an ambitious plan to

make Germany completely self-sufficient in strategic war

materials such as rubber, gasoline, and steel, in a period

of four years, so that the Nazi conspirators would be fully

prepared for aggressive war. The responsibility for the

execution of this programme was entrusted to the office of

the Four-Year Plan under the defendant Goering - and at this

point I should like to refer to the document bearing the

number and the lettering EC-408. It is dated the 30th day of

December, 1936, marked "Secret Command Matter", and

entitled, "Report, Memorandum on the Four-Year Plan and

Preparation of the War Economy."

This document sets out that the Fuehrer and Reich Chancellor

has conferred powers in regard to mobilisation preparations

in the economic field that need further definition. In the

third paragraph it refers specifically to Minister

President, Generaloberst Goering, as Commissioner of the

Four-Year Plan, by authority of the Fuehrer and Reich

Chancellor granted the 18th day of October, 1936. The

existence of this programme involved the reorganisation and

control of the whole German economy for war.

Again referring to Major General Thomas - and specifically

to our document EC-27 - General Thomas, in a lecture on the

28th of January, 1939, made at the Staff Instructor's

Course, stated:

   "The National Socialist State, soon after taking over

   power, reorganised the German economy in all sections

   and directed it towards a military view-point, which had

   been requested by the Army for years. Due to the

   reorganisation, agriculture, commerce and professions

   become those powerful instruments the Fuehrer needs for

   his extensive plans, and we can say to-day that Hitler's

   mobile politics, as well as the powerful efforts of the

   Army and economy, would not have been possible without

   the necessary reorganisation by the National Socialist

   Government. We can now say that the economic

   organisation as a whole corresponds with the needs,

   although slight adjustments will have to be made yet.

   These reorganisations made a new system of economics

   possible which was necessary in view of our internal and

   foreign political situation as well as our financial

   problems. The directed economy, as we have it to-day

   concerning agriculture, commerce and Industry, is not

   only the expression of the present State principles, but

   at the same time also the economy of the country's


If your Honour pleases, this programme was not undertaken in

a vacuum it was deliberately designed and executed to

provide the necessary instrument of the Nazi conspirators'

plans for aggressive war.

In September of 1934 the defendant Schacht frankly

acknowledged to the American Ambassador in Berlin that the

Hitler Party was absolutely committed to war, and the people

too ready and willing.

                                                  [page 130]

That quotation is found in the Ambassador's diary and is

document 2832-PS, particularly on page 176 of that diary.

At the same time, the defendant Schacht promulgated his new

plan for the control of imports and exports in the interest

of rearmament. A year later he was appointed Plenipotentiary

for the War Economy by the top secret decree referred to a

few minutes ago.

In September, 1936, the defendant Goering announced - at a

meeting attended by the defendant Schacht and others - that

Hitler had issued instructions to the Reich Minister on the

basis that the show-down with Russia is inevitable, and

added that "all measures have to be taken just as if we were

actually in the stage of imminent danger of war."

I refer the Court to document EC-416. Before I discuss the

quotation I might indicate that this document is also marked

a secret Reich matter in the minutes of the Cabinet meeting

of 4th September, 1936, at 12 o'clock noon. It tells who was

present: the defendant Goering, von Blomberg, the defendant

Schacht, and others.

On the second page of that document, in the second

paragraph, is found the quotation by Goering. It starts from

the basic thought that: "The show-down with Russia is

inevitable. What Russia has done in the field of

reconstruction we too can do."

On the third page of that document, in the second paragraph,

Goering stated: "All measures have to be taken just as if we

were actually in the stage of imminent danger of war."

In the same month the office of the Four-Year Plan was

created with the mission of making Germany self-sufficient

for war in four years. I refer back, at this point, to

document EC-408, and I particularly refer your Honour to the

third paragraph, again, of that document, where the

statement is made as regards the war economy: Minister

President Generaloberst Goering sees it as his task, within

four years, to put the entire economy in a state of

readiness for war.

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