The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-14/tgmwc-14-133.02

Archive/File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-14/tgmwc-14-133.02
Last-Modified: 2000/03/14

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Steinhauer, the Tribunal will consider
the question of these documents.

Now, Dr. Siemers.



DR. SIEMERS: May it please the Tribunal, yesterday, in
connection with Norway I submitted on one occasion Documents
81, 82, 83, 84, 85, and 86. I beg the Tribunal's pardon, but
I forgot to submit one document pertinent to this matter,
and I should like to remedy this omission.

This document, which has already been granted me, is Raeder
Exhibit 88, which likewise is an extract from the White Book
and is printed in my Document Book 5, on Pages 392 and
following. This document shows the British order of 6th
April, 1940, regarding the plans for the occupation of
Northern Swedish ore-fields, with Narvik as the base of the

Since the Tribunal is familiar with this document, it will
not be necessary for me to read from it.


Q. Admiral, yesterday we had arrived at the case of Russia.
You had answered my question regarding Directive 21,
Document 446-PS, of 18th December, 1940, to the effect that
the Navy had nothing to do with the drawing up of this
directive, but that the Navy undertook certain preparations
in January in accordance with it.

A. May I make a brief remark on this directive to the effect
that yesterday I believe you made a mistake when you said
that this directive was signed by Hitler, Keitel and Jodl.
This was the copy of the Operational Staff, which Hitler had
signed, but Keitel and Jodl only countersigned. Thus there
is no question of a signature of these two; when such
directives were issued they were signed only by Hitler, and
the others could merely countersign.

DR. SIEMERS: I beg your pardon, and I thank you for the

In this connection, I should like to ask the Tribunal to
look at Document C-35, Exhibit USA 132. This document is
found in Document Book 10A of the British Delegation, on
Page 16. It is an extract from the War Diary with the date
of 30th January, 1941. It describes the preparations by the
Navy in accordance with Hitler's directive of 18th December,
where Hitler, under (4) of the directive, laid down that
precautionary measures were to be taken only in case Russia
should alter her attitude toward Germany.


Q. Admiral, in connection with your representation of the
Russian situation, the prosecution has submitted Document C-
66, which is Exhibit GB 81. This is your report of 10th
January, 1944, to Admiral Assmann for the historical
archives of the Navy. The document will be found in Document
Book 10 of the British Delegation, Page 13. There you will
find the basic position taken by Raeder with respect to Case
Barbarossa, this is set forth under "a" of the document.

                                                  [Page 164]

I have just heard that this document is also to be found in
Document Book 10A, on Page 35.

There you wrote:-

  "At this time the Fuehrer had made known his 'unalterable
  decision' to conduct the Eastern campaign in spite of all
  objections. Further warnings therefore as long as no
  entirely new situation arose, were completely without
  purpose, as one knew from experience. As chief of the
  Naval Operations Staff I was never convinced of the
  'compelling necessity' for Barbarossa."

Have you anything to add to this statement you made at that

A. I should like to say in this connection that despite the
fact that the directive had been issued on 18th December, I
made a comprehensive report at the end of that month, as can
be seen from Document C-170, which I mentioned yesterday on'
several occasions, in order to convince the Fuehrer of the
wrongness of this decision. This showed that I went very
far, for once the Fuehrer had issued a directive, even if it
applied only to a hypothetical case, it was, in general,
useless to produce objections against it. Everything else I
mentioned yesterday.

Q. Admiral, yesterday, in connection with your counter-
proposals made to Hitler with respect to Russia, you
mentioned that in the autumn the plan was still to carry
through the action "sea-Lion", that is, a landing in

A. Yes.

Q. When, according to your strategic opinion or the opinion
of the Navy, did this possibility cease to exist? When did
you have to dispense with this plan?

A. All through September we still believed that the landing
could be carried through. As a necessary condition, the
Commander-in-Chief of the Army, and I too, always insisted -
and Hitler realised this fully - that, for a landing, we
must have air superiority. We were waiting therefore to see
whether we could actually produce this air superiority in
time for the landing which, due to weather conditions, could
not be carried out later than the beginning of October. If
it were not possible by then, it would have to be postponed
until May of the following year. It became clear that
adequate air superiority could not be produced in time, and
consequently it was said that the landing was to be
postponed until the spring of the following year. Further
preparations were to be taken and actually were taken. But
in the course of the winter, the idea of a landing was
completely abandoned, and Hitler decreed that preparations
in the harbours along the Channel should be carried on only
to such an extent as would give the British the impression
that this landing actually was to take place. In September I
had the impression that Hitler no longer had any great
interest in this landing and that, in his own mind, he was
completely committed to the Russian campaign. Clearly of
course, he could not carry out the landing in England as

Q. Now, I am turning to the accusation raised against you by
the prosecution, that you demanded that war be waged against
America. The prosecution has submitted in this connection
Document C-152, Exhibit GB 122, which is to be found in the
Document Book of the British Delegation, Page 23. This is an
extract from the War Diary of the Naval Operations Staff
dealing with a report of the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy
- that is, you - to the Fuehrer on 18th March, 1941. Under
(11) of this document, it is stated:

  "Japan must proceed to take Singapore as soon as
  possible, since the opportunity will never again be so
  favourable (preoccupation of the entire British Fleet
  elsewhere; the unreadiness of the United States to carry
  on a war against Japan; the inferiority of the United
  States Fleet to the Japanese Fleet). Japan is, indeed,
  preparing for this action but will carry it out,
  according to statements of Japanese officers, only at the
  moment when Germany proceeds with the landing in England.
  All efforts on Germany's part must therefore aim to
  incite Japan to immediate action. If Japan captures
  Singapore, then all other Eastern Asiatic problems
  relating to the United States and England will be solved
  (Guam, Philippines, Borneo, and Dutch East Indies).

                                                  [Page 165]

  "Japan wants to avoid a war against the United States of
  America if at all possible and can do so if she takes
  Singapore promptly."

The prosecution has construed this statement of yours to
mean that you wanted to lead Japan into a war against
America. Is that correct?

A. It is one of the most incorrect assertions contained in
the Indictment against me. It is perfectly clear that,
already involved in a naval war with England with my small
German Navy, I did not want under any circumstances to have
America on my neck as well, and it has been disclosed here
repeatedly that my most urgent effort during the entire
first few years of the war was to avoid, whatever the
circumstances, being involved with the United States.
Admiral Wagner described here in detail the limitations
which I had imposed on the German Navy in order to prevent
any clashes with the United States. I imposed limitations
which actually I could hardly justify when I carried on U-
boat warfare with such relatively small means. On the other
hand, the United States, from the end of 1940 on, at the
latest, and during the entire year of 1941, exerted pressure
on us in our naval warfare wherever possible and committed
actions which could be interpreted as definitely not
neutral. I remind you merely of the repairing of British
warships in the United States, something which up until that
time was completely unknown and unheard of; and Roosevelt's
orders to shoot, in July and in September, 1941; attacks by
the American destroyers Greer and Kearney in the Atlantic on
our U-boats. In two cases U-boats were pursued with depth
charges for two hours until finally they surfaced and fired,
in one case damaging a destroyer. Despite all this, in June
1941, I reported to Hitler that we were continuing not to
disturb the merchantmen of the United States in any way with
the result that these merchantmen were crossing the Atlantic
completely unmolested on sea lanes of their own choosing,
and were in a position to give reports about our U-boats and
our sea warfare without any prevention on our part. I added
that, because of this, the British were in a position to
camouflage their ships as American ships. That they did,
for, the first time our pocket battleship Admiral Scheer,
while crossing the Atlantic, searched a ship carrying the
American flag, it turned out to be the British ship Canadian
Cruiser. Despite all this I recommended to the Fuehrer, and
he fully approved my suggestion, that we should take no
measures against American ships. That we did not go to
Halifax to lay mines Admiral Wagner has already mentioned. I
need not mention that any further.

Q. Was this proposal that Japan capture Singapore only for
the purpose of having assistance and an ally against
England, with whom we were already at war?

A. That is actually the case, and I should like to picture
very briefly the development which led to this proposal.
This was not something that I did on my own initiative, for
at the beginning of that year, 1941, political negotiations
were being carried on with Japan partly by the Fuehrer and
partly by the Foreign Minister. I was not even called into
these negotiations and, I must say, I regretted this
omission for at these negotiations many things were
discussed of which I should not have approved. However, all
this shows that there can be no talk about a conspiracy.
Contact was made, and then the visit of the Foreign Minister
Matsuoka took place, I believe, in March.

On the basis of this development the Fuehrer, on 5th March,
1941, issued Directive 24. That is Document C-75, Exhibit
USA 151, of 5th March.

DR. SIEMERS: I should like to call the attention of the High
Tribunal to Document C-75, to be found in Document Book 10A
of the British Delegation, Page 58. In this directive, 24,
it says under (3)a:-

  "It is important to defeat England quickly and so keep
  the United States out of the war, that is our joint

And three paragraphs further down, under " b ", it says:-

  "The capture of Singapore - "

THE PRESIDENT: That on page 58 is instruction 54, concerning
collaboration with Japan.

                                                  [Page 166]

DR. SIEMERS: I have just been advised - to my surprise -
that only a part of this directive is to be found in the
English translation. I ask that the Tribunal grant me
permission, under these circumstances, to submit the
complete directive later as a Raeder document.

THE PRESIDENT: Have you got it in your Raeder book, Dr.

DR. SIEMERS: No, not until now; for I did not know that only
a part had been translated. I am asking for permission to
submit this whole document later as a Raeder document.


DR.SIEMERS: Thank you. That was (3)a, and the next quotation
will be found under (3)a, and it  says:

  "The capture of Singapore, which is the key position of
  England in the Far East, would be a decisive achievement
  in the war effort of the three powers.
  "Beyond that, attacks on other bases of British sea power
  - and of American only if the entry of the United States
  into the war cannot be prevented - will serve to shatter
  the war system of the enemy."

I ask the Tribunal to note the fact that as early as the 5th
of March, which is the date of this directive, Hitler
decreed the capture of Singapore. Consequently, the
suggestion made by Grand Admiral Raeder in Document C-152,
dated 18th March, cannot be considered decisive, since a
Hitler decree was already in existence.

THE WITNESS: May I make a brief remark about that? The same
thing seems to apply to all the cases which are being
mentioned here first of all, the political decision by
Hitler, the head of the State; then the directive of the
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces to the Armed Forces;
then the conclusions drawn by the commanders of the various
branches of the Wehrmacht.

After I received the directive of the 5th of March, I had to
contemplate how, if Japan were to enter the war, she could
act strategically with the best results. That depended on
how we could most effectively damage our main opponent,
England, on the sea. In this connection I had to insist most
urgently that Japan move against Singapore, since there were
also those who were of the opinion that Japan should attack
Vladivostok - this would have been a grave mistake.

England's centre of power in East Asia had to be attacked.
But the very fact that I believed that the capture of
Singapore would cause the United States of America to keep
out of the war occasioned this proposal of mine, and not the


Q. In this same connection, I refer to Document 1877-PS
which was submitted, in the special indictment against you.
It is Exhibit USA 152 and maybe found in the Document Book
10 of the British Delegation, Page 320. It is a conversation
between the Japanese Foreign Minister, Matsuoka - I am just
told now that 320 is incorrect. It should be 319.

THE PRESIDENT: And it should be 10A, I think.

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.