The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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This order of the defendant Goering not only determines the
special part of the Nazi Party in the execution of the
compulsory labour system, but also emphasises the
extraordinary powers of defendant Sauckel in this field. '

The documents to which I have been referring until now give
grounds for the Soviet prosecution to assert that within the
general framework of the Nazi Government the Nazi Party was
the centre of all measures for the Organisation of
compulsory slave labour.

I would like now to analyse the part taken by the German
High Command in the Organisation of compulsory labour and
deportation into slavery of Soviet people. With this object
in view, I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit USSR 367, an
O.K.H. document regarding (I am using the exact words of the
document itself) the "Mobilisation of Russian Manpower for
the Reich". I beg the Tribunal to refer to Page 138 of the
document book in which this document is to be found.

First of all, let us ascertain the source from which this
document emanates. In the upper left-hand corner of the
first page you will find "Ground Forces High Command,
General Staff of Ground Forces, Quartermaster General,
Office of Military Administration".

In the upper right-hand corner: Headquarters of the Ground
Forces High Command, 10 May, 1942," and again the stamp
"Secret". After the title it is stated:

  "Authority: Order of the High Command of the Ground
  No 2877/42, Secret, dated 25th April, 1942.
  Order of the High Command of the Ground Forces
  3158, 1942, Secret, 6th May, 1942."

Therefore, the document which I intend to quote here
originates from the O.K.W. and is based on orders previously
issued by the O.K.W.

At the end of this document there is a list of addresses to
which it was distributed. I will not quote this list in
full, but it leaves no doubt as to who were the executors of
the orders contained in the above document. These executors
were the military authorities.

Let us now turn to the contents of the submitted document.
First of all, what was the purpose of the O.K.W. when it
issued this letter? The reply to this question is contained
in the first paragraph of our document, which I shall now
read into the
record. I summarise the quotation:

  "The General Plenipotentiary for the Utilisation of
  Manpower appointed by the Fuehrer, Gauleiter Sauckel, in
  consideration of the increased armament requirements of
  the Reich and in order to secure the manpower
  requirements of the German war and armament economy, has
  received orders to speed up and increase considerably the
  recruiting and transport into the Reich of Russian
  manpower. For the execution of this recruiting measure
  which extends to the entire occupied Eastern territories,
  including the Army communications zones, special steps
  are necessary. . . .
  These measures are carried out by officers of the Labour
  Commitment and Mobilisation Commissions. This mobilising
  is not only to take place in the cities but is also to
  embrace the population of the villages. The measures have
  to be carried out at once and on a large scale. This must
  be the chief task of all organisations."

The next two paragraphs of the quoted document, part of
which is entitled: "Priority of Manpower Needs in the Armed
Forces and Economy in the East", contain the following

"The immediate manpower needs of the Army must be satisfied
in the first place. The scale of the needs is to be
determined by the staff and commanders of the Army. However,
one must take into consideration that the Reich needs
workers, if the ..."

                                                  [Page 237]

THE PRESIDENT: Is it not sufficient to say that this
document provides for the speeding up of the mobilisation of
manpower and slave labour for the purposes of the
necessities of the Reich? Does it do anything more than

GENERAL ZORYA: Yes, you are quite right, Mr. President. It
is enough if we add that this document contains not only the
demand to accelerate the mobilisation of manpower but also
the demand for immediate participation by the military
authorities who had to arrange a suitable machinery in the
form of suitable officers.

I pass on to the next document which I would like to submit
to the Tribunal.

It would be a mistake to think that the O.K.H. gave orders
only of such general character. In July, 1941, the defendant
Keitel learned that the sub-departments of the Organisation
Todt in the Lvov district paid the local workers a wage of
25 roubles. This situation made Keitel indignant. Todt
immediately received an appropriate reprimand. And so we
come to the next document, which I present to the Tribunal
as Exhibit USSR 366.

The Reichsminister refers plainly in this document to the
fact that General Fieldmarshal Keitel expressed his
displeasure that the sub-departments of the Organisation
Todt in the suburbs of Lvov paid wages to the local workers
up to the amount of 25 roubles and that the sub-departments
of the O.T. are making use of the factories.

Todt replies that during his last trip he had explained in
detail to all members of the staff that the rules for the
utilisation of manpower in Russian territory were different
from those in Western Europe. Further in this document Todt
categorically prohibits the paying of any sums of money at
all. He concludes this document in the following terms:

  "No compensation shall be given to the firms for wages
  not in conformity with the above principles.
  This order is brought to the attention of all subordinate
  Labour Utilisation offices and to all firms concerned."

The German Government and the military command ordered the
mobilisation of peaceful Soviet citizens for tasks which
endangered life. This was mentioned by Goering at a
conference on 7 November, 1941. I now submit to the Tribunal
Exhibit USSR 106, which contains the translation of the
Fuehrer's directive, signed by him on 8 September, 1942.
This directive concerns the utilisation of slave labour for
the erection of fortifications on the Eastern Front. This
document comes from the German archives captured by the
Allied Armies in the West. In the covering letter to this
document it is stated that this document is top secret and
copies of it which will be sent to Headquarters and
Divisions are to be returned to Headquarters of the Army and
destroyed after reading.

On the second page of the document we find Hitler's order. I
read it into the record:

  "Headquarters, 8 September, 1942.
  The heavy defensive battles in the area of Army Groups
  Centre and North compel me to make known my views of some
  fundamental tasks of the defence."

The next paragraphs 1 and 2 on Pages 1-7 concern general
principles of defence which do not interest us to-day. On
Page 148 of the document book is the following extract which
I read into the record:

  "The enemy indulges in the construction of positions to a
  far greater extent than our own troops. I know that it
  will be argued that the enemy has at his disposal more
  labour for construction of such positions. But it is
  therefore an absolute necessity at exactly this point to
  make use, with ruthless energy, of all prisoners of war
  and civilians for these tasks. Only in this respect is
  the Russian superior to us in his brutal way. By this
  means however, the German soldier too, can be spared as
  much as possible from labour on defensive works behind
  the front lines, in order that he may be kept free and
  fresh for his real duties. Frequently the necessary

                                                  [Page 238]
  which the present fateful battle demands, is not yet
  being employed here for we are not contesting a victory
  but for the existence and survival of our people.
  Besides, it is still in all circumstances always more
  humane to drive the Russian population to work by every
  means, as it has always been accustomed to be driven,
  than to sacrifice our most precious possession, our own

This order is signed by Hitler.

Units of the Red Army also captured a decree issued by the
German occupation authorities, which referred to an order of
the General Staff about forced labour in combat zones. I
submit this document as Exhibit USSR 407, and I deem it
necessary to quote a few sentences from Page 149 of the
document book:
  "Order: By order of the Chief of the General Staff of the
  Military Command, dated 6 November, 1943, regarding
  conscription and transference of labour to the combat
  zone of the newly occupied Eastern territory, all women
  born in 1924 and 1925 are hereby called up for labour in

Article 5 of this order provides that those who do not
present themselves on the given dates shall be considered as
saboteurs and will be held responsible in accordance with
military law.

I am summarising this section.

The High Command of the German Armed Forces and the
defendant Keitel took a personal part in the execution of
this system of forced slave labour; for the realisation of
this criminal objective they used on a large scale from top
to bottom the entire war mechanism of the military

I beg your Honours to refer to the next document, which I am
now presenting as Exhibit USSR 881.

THE PRESIDENT: Was that last order that you gave out
Keitel's order? It is signed apparently by the Chief of the
General Staff of the Military Command.

GENERAL ZORYA: This is not an order of Keitel. This document
which was submitted as Exhibit USSR 381 is entitled
"Circular on Treatment of Foreign Civilian Labour in the

THE PRESIDENT: I thought you said that was by Keitel.

GENERAL ZORYA: The preceding document which was submitted to
the Tribunal was actually one of Keitel's orders, but now I
wish to speak of this instruction. I beg your Honours to pay
attention to the date on which this instruction was issued,
namely 26 January, 1942. In this instruction - on Page 150
of the document book-it is stated that the hopes which the
Reich Marshal had placed in the Office for the Utilisation
of Manpower must be justified at all costs.

The task of the economic organisations and the Office for
the Utilisation of Manpower in the East consists in
bridging, during the coming months, the gaps in the economy
- which arose owing to the, departure into the army of men
of younger conscription age - by means of the universal
recruitment of Russian manpower.
  "This is of decisive importance for the war and must
  therefore be achieved. If the number of volunteers does
  riot come up to expectation, then, according to the
  orders, the most severe measures should be taken during
  the recruitment".

The American Prosecution has submitted to the Tribunal a
document of the Soviet Prosecution, Exhibit USSR 151,
entitled " Instructions on the Treatment of Foreign Workers
from the civilian population who are in the Reich".

I do not wish to quote this document again, buut only
consider necessary to show

(Dr. Nelte comes to the Lectern.)

DR. NELTE (counsel for defendant Keitel): The President has
just now asked about the Exhibit USSR 407 and the Prosecutor
has presented it here as a document

                                                  [Page 239]

of Keitel. I have only just now found this document. If it
is a question of the same document that I have, marked as
Exhibit USSR 407, then it is signed by a local commander and
by a chief of the Labour Office.

Is this document the same as that presented to you as
Exhibit USSR 407?

THE PRESIDENT: I have already pointed out, have I not, that
it was not by Keitel?

DR. NELTE: Yes, sir. But the Prosecutor has thereupon
repeatedly said that this Exhibit 407 represents an order by
Keitel. That is why I wanted to verify it.

GENERAL ZORYA: Perhaps the Tribunal will allow me to clarify
this matter. Apparently a misunderstanding arose through
faulty translation. I said that troops of the Red Army had
seized a German order, and added that the order had been
issued by the German occupational authorities - you can
verify this by looking up the stenographic record-which
referred to an order of Keitel regarding forced labour in
the combat zones. This order begins with the following
words: 'According to an Order of the Chief of the General
Staff of the Military Command regarding Compulsory Labour
Service, dated 6th November, 1943" and so forth. I shall not
quote any further.

If I may beg the Tribunal to consider once more a document
which I have already submitted previously i.e., the document
of the High Command of the Ground Forces, No. 113210 of
1942, it is because this order refers to corresponding
orders of the Supreme Command of the German Army regarding
questions of mobilisation of labour in the East. This order
of the occupational authorities, which I submitted as
exhibit USSR 407, refers to one of these orders. It states
quite clearly: " According to the instructions of the Chief
of the General Staff". That is why I submitted this

THE PRESIDENT: I am afraid I really do not understand you.
What I have got in the translation before me is this:

  "The units of the Red Army captured a copy of the German
  decree which mentions Keitel's order on the forced labour
  in the combat zone . . ." and continues further "that
  those persons refusing to
  work shall be apprehended as saboteurs."

This document is submitted as Exhibit USSR something or

It may be useful to read a few excerpts of it:

"By order of the Chief of the General Staff of the Military
Command of 6 November, 1943, concerning the compulsory
labour service in the combat zone" - and then it goes on to
deal with persons who do not present themselves being
considered saboteurs.

Well, I thought you were saying that the Chief of the
General Staff of the Military Command was Keitel. He was the
Chief of the O.K.W. Are you still saying that he was the
Chief of the Military Command?

GENERAL ZORYA: I quote only that which is in the document:
"By order of the Chief of the General Staff of the Military
Command". That is in the document, and I do not wish to add

THE PRESIDENT: I do not think it is worth taking any more
time over it.

GENERAL ZORYA: I will now go back to that document which was
submitted to the Tribunal by the American Prosecution, and
which was entitled "Directive for the Treatment of Foreign
Labour in the Reich". I will not quote this document in
detail; I would only like to stress that it established a
special regime for the foreign workers from the East. They
were interned in camps surrounded by guards and under
supervision of a camp commander. They later forbade the
normal regime for workers from the East. They were thus
forbidden to visit churches or any public places and they
were obliged to wear special insignia - a rectangle with
pale blue edges, and in the middle the word "Ost" in white
letters on the dark blue background.

                                                  [Page 240]

In the memorandum to housewives, regarding the employment of
women from the East in town and rural households it was
stated that (Page 131 of the document book): "Every Eastern
worker, every alien, judges the standard of our entire
people by the personal and political conduct of the
individual German. The foreign workers must see in the
housewife and the members of her family worthy
representatives of the German people."

I proceed further:

  "If, in exceptional cases, German and Eastern female
  domestic workers are employed in the same household, the
  German domestic worker must be given mainly tasks of
  serving the family and must also be given the supervision
  of the Eastern woman worker. The German domestic workers
  must be in every case in the privileged position."

General conditions of work did not apply to the women
workers from the East. Their labour was regulated only by
the whim of their masters. This was expressed in paragraph 4
of the same memorandum. I quote:

  "Eastern women workers employed in households are subject
  to special working conditions. German regulations on
  working conditions and on the safeguarding of labour
  refer to them only in so far as this is specifically

The character of these special instructions can be seen in
paragraph 9, Section "B" of the memorandum which states
quite openly:

  "No claim to leisure time is given. Eastern women
  domestic workers may not have the right to leave the
  household, except when on duty connected with the needs
  of the household. Visiting the theatres, restaurants,
  cinemas, etc., is forbidden."

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