Archive/File: imt/nca/nca-02/nca-02-15-criminality-02-03 Last-Modified: 1996/12/28 There were in Germany around a half million of these Blockleiter. Large though this figure may appear, there can be no doubt that these officials were in and of the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party. Though they stood at the broad base of the Party pyramid rather than at its summit, where rested the Reichsleiter, by virtue of this fact they were stationed at close intervals throughout the German civil population. It may be doubted that the average German ever looked upon the face of Heinrich Himmler. But the man in the street in Nazi Germany could not have avoided an uneasy acquaintance with the Blockleiter in his neighborhood. It was the block leaders who represented to the people of Germany the police-state of Hitler's Germany. In fact, the Blockleiter were little fuehrers with real power over the civilians in their domains. The authority of the Blockleiter to exercise coercion and the threat of force upon the civil population is shown in an excerpt from page 7 of the magazine published by the Chief Education Office of the Party, entitled "The Face of the Party": [Page 33] "Advice and sometimes also the harsher form of education is employed if the faulty conduct of an individual harms this individual himself and thus also the community." (6) Hoheitstraeger. Within the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party certain of the Political Leaders possessed a higher degree of responsibility than others, were vested with special prerogatives, and constituted a distinctive and elite group. These were the so-called "Hoheitstraeger" (Bearers of Sovereignty) who represented the Party within their area of jurisdiction, the so-called Hoheitsgebiet. The Party Manual (1893-PS) states as follows: "Among the Political Leaders, the Hoheitstraeger assumed a special position. Contrary to the other Political Leaders who have departmental missions, the Hoheitstraeger themselves are in charge of a geographical sector known as the Hoheitsgebiet [Sectors of Sovereignty]. "Hoheitstraeger are: "The Fuehrer The Gauleiter The Kreisleiter The Ortsgruppenleiter The Zellenleiter The Blockleiter. "Hoheitsgebiet are: "The Reich The Gau The Kreis The Ortsgruppe The Zelle The Block "Within their sector of sovereignty the Hoheitstraeger have sovereign political rights. They represent the Party within their sector. The Hoheitstraeger supervise all Party Officers within their jurisdiction and *** are responsible for the maintenance of discipline. *** The directors of offices, etc., and of the affiliated organizations are responsible to their respective Hoheitstraeger as regards their special missions. *** The Hoheitstraeger are superior to all Political Leaders, managers, etc., within their sector. As regards personal considerations, Hoheitstraeger *** are endowed with special rights "The Hoheitstraeger of the Party are not to be administrative officials *** but are to move in a continuous vital contact with the Political Leaders of the population within their [Page 34] sector. The Hoheitstraeger are responsible for the proper and good supervision of all members of the nation within their sectors ***. "The Party intends to achieve a state of affairs in which the individual German will find his way to the Party ***." (1893-PS) The distinctive character of the Politischer Leiter (Political Leaders) constituting the Hoheitstraeger, and their existence and operation as an identifiable group, are indicated by the publication of a magazine, entitled Der Hoheitstraeger, whose distribution was limited by regulation of the Reich Organization Leader to the Hoheitstraeger and certain other designated Politischer Leiter. The inside cover of this exclusive Party magazine reads as follows: "DER HOHEITSTRAEGER, the contents of which is to be handled confidentially, serves only for the orientation of the competent leaders. It may not be loaned out to other persons ***" [then follows a list of the Hoheitstraeger and other Political Leaders authorized to receive the magazine.] (2660-PS) The magazine states that, in addition, the following were entitled to receive it: "Commandants, Unit Commanders and Candidates of Order Castles; the Reich, Shock Troop and Gaue Speakers of the NSDAP; the Lieutenant Generals and Major Generals of SA, SS, NSFK, and NSKK; Lieutenant Generals and Major Generals of the HJ." (2660-PS) The fact that this magazine existed, that it derived its name from the Commanding Officers of the Leadership Corps, that it was distributed to the elite of the Leadership Corps -- that a House Bulletin was circulated down the command channels of the Leadership Corps -- demonstrates that the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party was an identifiable group or organization within the meaning of Article 9 of the Charter. An examination of the contents of the magazine Der Hoheitstraeger reveals a continuing concern by the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party in measures and doctrines which were employed throughout the course of the conspiracy. The plans and policies of the inner elite of the Leadership Corps gain clarity through a random sampling of articles published and policies advocated in various issues of the magazine Der Hoheitstraeger. From February 1937 to October 1938 these included the following: anti-Semitic articles, attacks on Catholicism and the Christian [Page 35] religion and clergy; the need for motorized armament; the urgent need for expanded Lebensraum and colonies; persistent attacks on the League of Nations; the use of the Block and Cell in achieving favorable votes in Party plebiscites; the intimate association between the Wehrmacht and the Political Leadership, the racial doctrines of Fascism; the cult of "leadership"; the role of the Gaue, Ortsgruppen, and Zellen in the expansion of Germany; and related matters. (a) Organization of Political Leaders. The Political Leaders were organized according to the leadership principle (1893- PS): "The basis of the Party organization is the Fuehrer thought. The public is unable to rule itself either directly or indirectly *** All Political Leaders stand as appointed by the Fuehrer and are responsible to him. They possess full authority toward the lower echelons *** Only a man who has absorbed the school of subordinate functions within the Party has a claim to the higher Fuehrer offices. We can only use Fuehrers who have served from the ground up. Any Political Leader who does not conform to these principles is to be dismissed or to be sent back to the lower offices, as Blockleiter, Zellenleiter for further training *** "The Political Leader is not an office worker but the Political Deputy of the Fuehrer *** Within the Political Leadership, we are building the Political Leadership of the state *** The type of the Political Leader is not characterized by the office which he represents. There is no such thing as a Political Leader of the NSBO, etc., but there is only the Political Leader of the NSDAP." (1893-PS) Each Political Leader was sworn in yearly. According to the Party Manual (1893-PS), the wording of the oath was as follows: "I pledge eternal allegiance to Adolf Hitler. I pledge unconditional obedience to him and the Fuehrers appointed by him." (1893-PS) The Organization Book of the NSDAP also provides: "The Political Leader is inseparably tied to the ideology and the organization of the NSDAP. His oath only ends with his death or with his expulsion from the National Socialist community." (1893-PS) (b) Appointment of Political Leaders. The appointment of political leaders constituting the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party proceeded as follows, according to the Party Manual: "The Fuehrer appointed the following Political Leaders: "a. All Reichsleiter and all Political Leaders within the [Page 36] Reichsleitung [Reich Party Directorate], including women's leaders. "b. All Gauleiter, including the Political Leaders holding offices in the Gauleitung [Gau Party Directorate], including Gau women leaders. "c. All Kreisleiter. "The Gauleiter appointed: "a. The Political Leaders and women's leaders within the Gau Party Directorate. "b. The Political Leaders and directors of women's leagues in the Kreis Party Directorate. "c. All Ortsgruppenleiter. "The Kreisleiter appoints the Political Leaders and the Directors of the Women's Leagues of the Ortsgruppen including the Block and Cell Leaders." (1893-PS) c. Power of Hoheitstraeger to Call Upon Part? Formations. The Hoheitstraeger among the Leadership Corps were entitled to call upon and utilize the various Party Formations as necessary for the execution of Nazi Party policies. The Party Manual makes it clear that the Hoheitstraeger has power and authority to requisition the services of the SA: "The Hoheitstraeger is responsible for the entire political appearance of the Movement within his zone. The SA leader of that zone is tied to the directives of the Hoheitstraeger in that respect. "The Hoheitstraeger is the ranking representative of the Party to include all organizations within his zone. He may requisition the SA located within his zone from the respective SA leader if they are needed for the execution of a political mission. The Hoheitstraeger will then assign the mission to the SA *** "Should the Hoheitstraeger need more SA for the execution of political mission than is locally available, he then applies to the next higher office of sovereignty which, in turn, requests the SA from the SA office in his sector." (1893-PS) The Hoheitstraeger also had the same authority to call upon the services of the SS and NSKK (1893-PS).
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