The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Q. That is, if any individual was attempting to profit by
Jewish possessions - is that what you meant?

A. By the Aryanisation.

Q. I will quote another portion:
  
  "In other words, it must be an ordinary business
  transaction. One sells his business and another buys it.
  If there are Party members among the would-be purchasers,
  they are to be given preference if they fulfil the same
  conditions. First of all come the casualties according to
  their merits, priority being given to those who have
  suffered most. After that, selection should be made on
  grounds of Party membership."

I will omit a line or two:

  "This Party member should have a chance to buy the
  business for as cheap a price as possible, equivalent to
  the amount received by the Jew from the State.

Is that correct?

A. Just a moment, please, I believe you omitted something.

Q. Yes, we did. If you want to put it in, you may read it.

A. No, I want to put it quite briefly, so that it will not
take too long. I said what you have already said, that all
things being equal, the Party member is to be given
preference, the first on the list being the member who
suffered prejudice by having his business licence cancelled
because he was a Party member. Then follows the paragraph
which you read and which is correct.

Q. Now, you then speak at considerable length of the method
by which you intended to Aryanise Jewish businesses, is that
right?

A. Yes.

Q. And then you take up the Aryanisation of Jewish
factories.

A. Yes.

Q. You speak of the smaller factories first.

A. Yes.

Q. Have you found the place where you speak of the
factories?

A. Yes, I have found it.

                                                  [Page 258]

Q. I quote:

  "With regard to the smaller and medium sized ones, two
  things will have to be made clear: First, which are the
  factories for which I have no use, and which ones can be
  shut down? Could they not be put to another use? If not,
  then these factories are to be pulled down.
  
  Second, if the factory should be needed, it will be
  turned over to Aryans in the same manner as the stores."

That is correct, is it not?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you care to say any more on that subject?

A. No, these should be the basic elements for the laws.

Q. Now, I call your attention to the second paragraph,
starting, "Take now the larger factories." Do you find that?

A. Yes.

Q. Dealing with the larger factories, do you not say the
solution is very simple, that the factory can be compensated
in the same manner as the stores, that is, at a rate which
we shall determine, and the Trustee shall take over the
Jew's interest, as well as his shares, and in turn sell or
transfer them to the State, as he thinks fit.

A. That means anyone who has any interest in the factories
will receive compensation, according to the scale laid down
by us.

Q. And the reparation will be turned over to the State
Trustee, will it not?

A. Yes, to the State Trustee. The matter was quite simple:
The Jew relinquished his ownership and received bonds. These
3 per cent. bonds were to be settled by the Trustee.

Q. Well, we will pass on to where you deal with the foreign
Jews, do you recall that?

A. Yes.

Q. At that point a representative of the Foreign Office
claimed the right to participate on behalf of the Foreign
Minister, is that right?

A. Yes.

Q. Well, now, we will pass on to the point of the
conversation between yourself and Heydrich.

A. Just a moment, please. Part of the minutes are missing.
All right. I have found the place where Heydrich is
mentioned for the first time.

Q. You inquired how many synagogues were actually burned,
and Heydrich replied, "Altogether there were 101 synagogues
destroyed by fire, 76 synagogues demolished, and 7,500
stores destroyed in the Reich." Have I quoted that correctly
?

A. Yes.

Q. Well, then Dr. Goebbels interposed, "I am of the opinion
that this is our chance to dissolve the synagogues." And
then you have a discussion about the dissolving of the
synagogues, have you not?

A. By Dr. Goebbels, yes.

Q. Then, Dr. Goebbels raised the question of Jews travelling
in railway trains?

A. Yes.

Q. Let me know if I quote correctly the dialogue between you
and Dr. Goebbels on that subject. Dr. Goebbels said,
"Furthermore, I advocate that Jews be banned from all public
places where they might cause provocation. It is still
possible for a Jew to share a sleeper with a German.
Therefore, the Reich Ministry of Transport must issue a
decree ordering that there shall be separate compartments
for Jews. If this compartment is full, then the Jews cannot
claim a seat. They can only occupy separate compartments
after all.

                                                  [Page 259]

Germans have secured seats. They must not mix with the
Germans; if there is no more room, they will have to stand
in the corridor." Is that right?

A. Yes, that is correct.

Q. Goering: "I think it would be more sensible to give them
separate compartments." Goebbels: "Not if the train is
overcrowded." Goering: "Just a moment. There will be only
one Jewish coach. If that is filled up the other Jews will
have to stay at home." Goebbels: "But suppose there are not
many Jews going on the long-distance express train to
Munich. Suppose there are two Jews on the train and the
other compartments are overcrowded; these two Jews would
then have a compartment to themselves. Therefore, the decree
must state, Jews may claim a seat only after all Germans
have secured a seat." Goering: "I would give the Jews one
coach, or one compartment, and should a case such as you
mentioned arise, and the train be overcrowded, believe me,
we will not need a law. They will be kicked out all right,
and will have to sit alone in the toilet all the way." Is
that correct?

A. Yes. I was getting irritated when Goebbels came with his
small details when important laws were being discussed. I
refused to do anything. I issued no decrees or laws in this
connection. Of course, to-day, it is very pleasant for the
prosecution to bring it up, but I wish to state that it was
a very lively meeting at which Goebbels made demands which
were quite outside the economic sphere, and I used these
expressions to give vent to my feelings.

Q. Then Goebbels, who felt very strongly about these thing,
said that Jews should stand in the corridor, and you said
that they would have to sit in the toilet. That is the way
you said it?

A. No, it is not. I said that they should have a special
compartment, and when Goebbels still was not satisfied, and
harped on it, I finally told him, "I do not need a law. He
can either sit in the toilet or leave the train."

Q. Let us go down to where Goebbels brings up the subject of
the German forests.

A. Just a moment. Yes. It starts where Goebbels asked for a
decree which would prevent Jews from going to German holiday
resorts. To which I replied, "Give them their own," and then
he suggested, "It would have to be considered whether we
should give them their own resorts or place some German
bathing places at their disposal, but not the best ones. The
people could then say: You allow the Jews to get fit by
using our bathing resorts. The question must also be
considered whether it is necessary to forbid the Jews to go
into the German forests. Herds of Jews are to-day running
about in the Grunewald." Then when he broke in again, I
replied very sharply: "It would be better to put a certain
part of the forest at the disposal of the Jews, if you want
them out of the rest of the forest." Then I made the remark
which seems to cause so much interest.

Q. Let us have that remark. Is it not correct that you
stated, "We will give the Jews a certain part of the forest,
and Alpers will see to it that the various animals, which
are damnably like the Jews - the elk, too, has a hooked nose
- go into the Jewish enclosure and settle down among them."
Is that what you said?

A. Yes, I said it, but it should be linked up with the whole
atmosphere of the meeting. Goebbels comes back to it again
in the next sentence and says he considers my attitude
provoking. I, too, can say I was provoked by his insistence
on unimportant things, when such far-reaching and decisive
matters were being discussed.

Q. Now, you come to the point where you ask Herr Hilgard
from the insurance company to come in. Can you find that?

A. Yes.

Q. Then you made a statement to Herr Hilgard when he came
in. "The position  is as follows: Because of the justified
anger of the people against the

                                                  [Page 260]

Jews, the Reich has suffered a certain amount of damage.
Windows have been broken, goods damaged, and people hurt;
synagogues have been burned, and so forth. I suppose many of
the Jews are also insured against damage committed by public
disorder." Hilgard: "Yes." Goering: "If that is so, the
following situation arises. The people in their justified
anger meant to harm the Jews, but it is the German insurance
companies which have to compensate the Jews for the damage.
The thing is simple enough. I have only to issue a decree to
the effect that damage resulting from these riots shall not
have to be paid by the insurance companies." Is that what
you said?

A. Yes, I said all that.

Q. Hilgard then outlined three kinds of insurance. He
pointed out that at least as far as plate glass insurance
was concerned, the majority of the sufferers were Aryans who
owned buildings and that, as a rule, the Jews only rented
them. Is that right?

A. Yes, those are the details of the discussion.

Q. And Hilgard said: "May I draw your attention to the
following facts: Plate glass is not manufactured by the
Bohemian glass industry, but is entirely in the hands of the
Belgian glass industry. In my estimation the damage amounts
to six millions, that is to say, under the insurance
policies, we shall have to pay the owners, who for the most
part are Aryans, about six millions compensation for the
glass."

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Justice Jackson, before you pass from
that page, in the third paragraph, just for the sake of
accuracy, it appears, does it not, that the name "Herr
Hilgard" is wrongly placed, because he seems both to put the
question and to answer it.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Well, I think that is -

THE PRESIDENT: Probably the defendant Goering put the
question. It is the third paragraph on my page.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: I take the minutes to read that when
Hilgard appeared,, Goering addressed him as "Herr Hilgard."

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, I see.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: But it is correct as your Honour
suggests.

THE DEFENDANT: I wish to point out what was said before
concerning the broken glass. Goebbels said: "The Jews must
pay for the damage," and I said, "It is no use, we have no
raw material, it is all foreign glass. That will require
foreign currency. It is like asking for the moon." Then
Hilgard comes with the discussions just mentioned.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON:

Q. Yes, and Hilgard pointed out that - "Incidentally the
amount of damage, equals about half a year's production of
the whole of the Belgian glass industry. We believe that the
manufacturers will take six months to deliver the glass." Do
you recall that?

A. Yes.

Q. Well, passing down, you come to a point at which Hilgard
tells you about a store on Unter-den-Linden which was
attacked. Can you find that?

A. He said, "The biggest incident is the case of Markgraf,
Unter-den-Linden." Is that not so?

Q. That is right.

A. Yes, I have found the place.

Q. "The damage reported to us amounts to about one million,
seven hundred, thousand, because the store was completely
ransacked." Is that right?

A. Yes.

Q. Goering: "Daluege and Heydrich, you have got to get me
these jewels by large-scale raids." Is that the order you
gave?

A. Yes, of course, so that the stolen goods should be
brought back.

Q. Brought back to you, not to the Jews?

                                                  [Page 261]

A. Not to me personally, I beg your pardon.

Q. Brought back to the State-you did not intend to return
them to the Jews?

A. It does not say that here. The main thing is, that they
should be brought back.


Q. "We are trying to get the loot back," as Heydrich put it,
is that right? And you added, "And the jewels."

A. If a large jeweller's shop were plundered, something had
to be done about it because with these valuables a great
deal of trouble could be caused. Therefore, I ordered raids
to be carried out to have these things, as well as other
stolen goods, brought back. When a business was Aryanised,
its stock was also transferred to the new owner. The main
point, however, was that action should be taken against
those who had stolen and plundered, and in fact a hundred
and fifty had already been arrested.

Q. And Heydrich went on to report on the method of these
raids after you reminded him to bring back, to get the
jewels.

  "It is difficult to say. Some of the articles were thrown
  into the street and picked up. The same happened with the
  furriers. For example, in the Friedrichstrasse, within
  the district of Police Station C, there the crowd
  naturally rushed to pick up mink and skunk furs, etc. It
  will be very difficult to recover them. Even children
  filled their pockets just for the fun of the thing. It is
  suggested that the Hitler Youth should not be employed on
  such actions without the Party's consent. Such things are
  very easily destroyed."

A. Yes, so it says.

Q. And Daluege then suggests: "The Party should issue an
order to the effect that the police must immediately be
notified if the neighbour's wife (everybody knows his
neighbour) has a fur coat remodelled, or somebody is seen
wearing a new ring or bracelet. We should like the Party to
assist in this matter."

Correct?

A. This is absolutely correct.

Q. Now, Hilgard objected to your plan of releasing the
insurance companies from paying the claims, did he not?

A. Yes, this is also correct.

Q. And he gave the reasons:

  "Hilgard: If I may give the reasons for my objection: the
  point is that we do a large international business. Our
  business has a sound international basis, and in the
  interest of the foreign exchange position in Germany we
  cannot allow the confidence in the German insurance-
  business to be shaken. If we were now to refuse to fulfil
  commitments entered into by legal contracts it would be a
  blot on the escutcheon of the German insurance business.
  
  Goering: But it would not be if I were to issue a decree
  or a law."

Am I quoting correctly?

A. Yes, and Hilgard's reply - and that was the reply I was
concerned with - he pointed out that the insurance companies
could not get out of paying claims unless a law provided for
it. If the sovereign State passes a law to the effect that
the insurance sums must be forfeited to the State, then the
insurance companies are no longer under any obligation.


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