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                           of the
               International Military Tribunal
                           For The
             Trial of German Major War Criminals

               His Majesty's Stationery Office

                                                   [Page 45]


Article 6 (b) of the Charter defines war crimes in these

     "War crimes: namely, violations of the laws or
     customs of war. Such violations shall include, but
     not be limited to, murder, ill-treatment or
     deportation to slave labor or for any other
     purpose of civilian population of or in occupied
     territory, murder or ill-treatment of prisoners of
     war or persons on the seas, killing of hostages,
     plunder of public or private property, wanton
     destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or
     devastation not justified by military necessity."

In the course of the war, many Allied soldiers who had
surrendered to the Germans were shot immediately, often as a
matter of deliberate, calculated policy. On the 18th
October, 1942, the Defendant Keitel circulated a directive
authorised by Hitler, which ordered that all members of
Allied "Commando" units, often when in uniform and whether
armed or not, were to be "slaughtered to the last man", even
if they attempted to surrender. It was further provided that
if such Allied troops came into the hands of the military
authorities after being first captured by the local police,
or in any other way they should be handed over immediately
to the SD. This order was supplemented from time to time,
and was effective throughout the remainder of the war,
although after the Allied landings in Normandy in 1944 it
was made clear that the order did not apply to "Commandos"
captured within the immediate battle area. Under the
provisions of this order, Allied "Commando" troops, and
other military units operating independently, lost their
lives in Norway, France, Czechoslovakia, and Italy. Many of
them were killed on the spot, and in no case were those who
were executed later in concentration camps ever given a
trial of any kind. For example, an American military mission
which landed behind the German front in the Balkans in
January, 1945, numbering about twelve to fifteen men and
wearing uniform, were taken to Mauthausen under the
authority of this order, and according to the affidavit of
Adolf Zutte [sic] the adjutant of the Mauthausen
Concentration Camp, all of them were shot.

                                                   [Page 46]

In March, 1944, the OKH issued the "Kugel" or "Bullet"
decree, which directed that every escaped officer and NCO
prisoner of war who had not been put to work, with the
exception of British and American prisoners of war, should
on recapture be handed over to the SIPO and SD. This order
was distributed by the SIPO and SD to their regional
offices. These escaped officers and NCO's were to be sent to
the concentration camp at Mauthausen, to be executed upon
arrival, by means of a bullet shot in the neck.

In March, 1944, fifty officers of the British Royal Air
Force, who escaped from the camp at Sagan where they were
confined as prisoners, were shot on recapture, on the direct
orders of Hitler. Their bodies were immediately cremated,
and the urns containing their ashes were returned to the
camp. It was not contended by the defendants that this was
other than plain murder, in complete violation of
international law.

When Allied airmen were forced to land in Germany, they were
sometimes killed at once by the civilian population. The
police were instructed not to interfere with these killings,
and the Ministry of Justice was informed that no one should
be prosecuted for taking part in them.

The treatment of Soviet prisoners of war was characterized
by particular inhumanity. The death of so many of them was
not due merely to the action of individual guards, or to the
exigencies of life in the camps. It was the result of
systematic plans to murder. More than a month before the
German invasion of the Soviet Union, the OKW were making
special plans for dealing with political representatives
serving with the Soviet Armed Forces who might be captured.
One proposal was that "political Commissars of the Army are
not recognized as Prisoners of War, and are to be liquidated
at the latest in the transient prisoner of war camps." The
Defendant Keitel gave evidence that instructions
incorporating this proposal were issued to the German Army.

On the 8th September, 1941, regulations for the treatment of
Soviet prisoners of war in all prisoner of war camps were
issued, signed by General Reinecke, the head of the prisoner
of war department of the High Command. Those orders stated:

     "The Bolshevist soldier has therefore lost all
     claim to treatment as an honorable opponent, in
     accordance with the Geneva Convention .... The
     order for ruthless and energetic action must be
     given at the slightest indication of
     insubordination, especially in the case of
     Bolshevist fanatics. Insubordination, active or
     passive resistance, must be broken immediately by
     force of arms (bayonets, butts, and firearms) ....
     Anyone carrying out the order who does not use his
     weapons, or does so with insufficient energy, is
     punishable .... Prisoners of war attempting escape
     are to be fired on without previous challenge. No
     warning shot must ever be fired .... The use of
     arms against prisoners of war is as a rule legal."

The Soviet prisoners of war were left without suitable
clothing the wounded without medical care; they were
starved, and in many cases left to die.

On the 17th July, 1941, the Gestapo issued an order
providing for the killing of all Soviet prisoners of war who
were or might be dangerous to National Socialism. The order

     "The mission of the Commanders of the SIPO and SD
     stationed in Stalags is the political
     investigation of all camp inmates, the elimination
     and further 'treatment' (a) of all political,
     criminal, or in some other way unbearable elements
     among them, (b) of those persons who could be used
     for the reconstruction of the occupied territories
     .... Further, the commanders must make efforts
                                              [Page 47]
     the beginning to seek out among the prisoners
     elements which appear reliable, regardless of
     whether there are Communists concerned or not, in
     order to use them for intelligence purposes inside
     of the camp, and if advisable, later in the
     occupied territories also. By use of such
     informers, and by use of all other existing
     possibilities, the discovery of all elements to be
     eliminated among the prisoners must proceed step
     by step at once .."
     "Above all, the following must be discovered: all
     important functionaries of State and Party,
     especially professional revolutionaries ..all
     People's Commissars in the Red Army, leading
     personalities of the State ..leading personalities
     of the business world, members of the Soviet
     Russian Intelligence, all Jews, all persons who
     are found to be agitators or fanatical Communists.
     Executions are not to be held in the camp or in
     the immediate vicinity of the camp .... The
     prisoners are to be taken for special treatment if
     possible into the former Soviet Russian

The affidavit of Warlimont, Deputy Chief of Staff of the
Wehrmacht, and the testimony of Ohlendorf, former Chief of
Amt III of the RSHA, and of Lahousen, the head of one of the
sections of the Abwehr, the Wehrmacht's Intelligence
Service, all indicate the thoroughness with which this order
was carried out.

The affidavit of Kurt Lindown, a former Gestapo official,

     " ... There existed in the prisoner of war camps
     on the Eastern Front small screening teams
     (Einsatz commandos), headed by lower ranking
     members of the Secret Police (Gestapo). These
     teams were assigned to the camp commanders and had
     the job of segregating the prisoners of war who
     were candidates for execution according to the
     orders that had been given, and to report them to
     the office of the Secret Police.'

On the 23rd October, 1941, the camp commander of the Gross
Rosen concentration camp reported to Mueller, Chief of the
Gestapo, a list of the Soviet prisoners of war who had been
executed there on the previous day.

An account of the general conditions and treatment of Soviet
prisoners of war during the first eight months after the
German attack upon Russia was given in a letter which the
Defendant Rosenberg sent to the defendant Keitel on 28th
February, 1942:

     "The fate of the Soviet prisoners of war in
     Germany is on the contrary a tragedy of the
     greatest extent .... A large part of them has
     starved, or died because of the hazards of the
     weather. Thousands also died from spotted fever.
     "The camp commanders have forbidden the civilian
     population to put food at the disposal of the
     prisoners, and they have rather let them starve to
     "In many cases, when prisoners of war could no
     longer keep up on the march because of hunger and
     exhaustion, they were shot before the eyes of the
     horrified population, and the corpses were left.
     "In numerous camps, no shelter for the prisoners
     of war was provided at all. They lay under the
     open sky during rain or snow. Even tools were not
     made available to dig holes or caves."

In some cases Soviet prisoners of war were branded with a
permanent mark. There was put in evidence the OKW order
dated the 20th July, 1942, which laid down that:

                                                   [Page 48]

     "The brand is to take the shape of an acute angle
     of about 45 degrees, with the long side to be 1
     cm. in length, pointing upwards and burnt on the
     left buttock .... This brand is made with the aid
     of a lancet available in any military unit. The
     coloring used is Chinese ink."

The carrying out of this order was the responsibility of the
military authorities, though it was widely circulated by the
Chief of the SIPO and the SD to German police officials for
information. Soviet prisoners of war were also made the
subject of medical experiments of the most cruel and inhuman
kind. In July, 1943, experimental work was begun in
preparation for a campaign of bacteriological warfare;
Soviet prisoners of war were used in these medical
experiments, which more often than not proved fatal. In
connection with this campaign for bacteriological warfare,
preparations were also made for the spreading of bacterial
emulsions from planes, with the object of producing
widespread failures of crops and consequent starvation.
These measures were never applied, possibly because of the
rapid deterioration of Germany's military position.

The argument in defense of the charge with regard to the
murder and ill-treatment of Soviet prisoners of war, that
the U.S.S.R. was not a party to the Geneva Convention, is
quite without foundation. On the 15th September,.1941,
Admiral Canaris protested against the regulations for the
treatment of Soviet prisoners of war, signed by General
Reinecke on the 8th September, 1941. He then stated:

     "The Geneva Convention for the treatment of
     prisoners of war is not binding in the
     relationship between Germany and the U.S.S.R.
     Therefore only the principles of general
     international law on the treatment of prisoners of
     war apply. Since the 18th century these have
     gradually been established along the lines that
     war captivity is neither revenge nor punishment,
     but solely protective custody, the only purpose of
     which is to prevent the prisoners of war from
     further participation in the war. This principle
     was developed in accordance with the view held by
     all armies that it is contrary to military
     tradition to kill or injure helpless people ....
     The decrees for the treatment of Soviet prisoners
     of war enclosed are based on a fundamentally
     different view-point."

This protest, which correctly stated the legal position, was
ignored. The Defendant Keitel made a note on this

     "The objections arise from the military concept of
     chivalrous warfare. This is the destruction of an
     ideology. Therefore I approve and back the

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