Archive/File: imt/nca/supp-b/nca-sb-02-pohl.10 Last-Modified: 1997/12/10 Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression, Supplement B Composition and Activities of "Himmler's Friends" Excerpts from Testimony of Oswald Pohl, taken at Nurnberg, Germany, 8 June 1946, 1030-1230, by Lt. Col. Smith W. Brookhart, Jr., IGD. Also present: Dr. Joseph Maier, Interpreter; Charles J. Gallagher, Reporter. Q. You have mentioned dealings with Ohlendorf. Will you elaborate on what particulars you dealt with Ohlendorf, or had contact with him? [Page 1597] A. Whenever I met Ohlendorf it was only within that special circle of Friends of Himmler's. I never looked him up in an official capacity. Q. What were the occasions when you met with Ohlendorf? A. Every month the circle of Friends of Himmler's got together. There were about thirty persons present and Ohlendorf was among them. I say, these were the occasions on which I got together with him. Q. Where were these meetings? A. Usually in the House of Aviators in Berlin. Q. When were these meetings? What time of the day, and how long would they last? A. They usually started at 7:30 in the evening and would last until about ten or ten-thirty, when people began to go away. Q. How large was the average attendance? A. The average attendance was twenty persons. Sometimes thirty persons. I don't know all the people that belonged to that particular circle of Friends of Himmler's. I just saw the people that happened to be there. Q. Did the same people attend every month? A. That varied. At one meeting one fellow would not appear, and another fellow would appear at another meeting. That varied, and I was not there either every time. Q. You mentioned before that economic and business leaders often attended these monthly dinners for the friends of Himmler's. Who, for instance? A. The majority of people who attended were economic and business leaders. Among them were Baron von Schroeder, Lindemann who I beleive was the president of the German Economic Chamber, Emil Helfferich from Hamburg, Ritter von Halt, the successor of the Reichsport Leader Tschammer- Osten, Professor Meyer of the Dresdener Bank in Berlin, and Herr Flick, the noted central German industrialist. Q. Were there other industrial or business leaders at these dinners who you can now recall? A. Dr. Binge, who was a representative of a large concern. I am not sure whether that was Siemens. Yes, I seem to recall that he was the Director General of Siemens. Then there was one Rosterig of Kastel --Harthein, but which firm he represented I don't know. One Herr Loscher, formerly of the Reich Finance Ministry, and subsequently a leader of an economic concern either subsidized or established by the Reich Government. Q. Then you can think about those and give us other names [Page 1598] later. Now as you talked to Ohlendorf what did you usually discuss? A. It was usually the case that we of the SS would spread among the group, and talk to the other guests. We would not sit together, you see. Thus it happened that Ohlendorf and I did not talk very much to each other. Q. Was this habit of spreading SS representatives among the other guests a prearranged matter? A. Yes, it was. We were told not to sit together. The seating arrangement at the table was such that the SS was spread among the other guests. Himmler had his personal guests sit near him, and we were supposed to entertain them. Q. What were you told to discuss with the guests? A. We did not have any definite instructions as to what to talk to them about. We were simply asked to entertain them. Q. Who among the SS approached these leaders for financial support? A. The manager of this affair was Brigadefuehrer Kranefuss. He issued the invitations on behalf of the Reichsfuehrer SS Himmler, and even I received an invitation every time. He arranged the seating order around the table, and it was he who discussed all the internal matters with the economic leaders there. They were not restricted to these gatherings for their talks or discussions. That is, the economic leaders were not restricted to these social gatherings. These activities must have taken place outside as well. Q. I am concerned with the manner in which these industrial and business leaders were approached for financial aid. What do you know about that? A. I would not know anything about this. All of this was attended to by Kranefuss. How he did it I do not know. Q. When did you learn about it, after the money came into the treasury of the SS? A. I never received the money; that was received by the personal staff, that is Wolff. Q. You mean to tell us you knew how the money was spent, and not where it came from? A. I have no idea. Q. Yes, you do. A. I am telling you the truth. They never came through my hands. Everything was attended to by Obergruppenfuehrer Wolff, who had his own treasurer. Q. You are not stupid, and you were well informed in these [Page 1599] matters. You probably had a better insight of the SS organization's financial problems and its financial reserves than any other man. A. That is true. Q. Now tell us what were the amounts in a general way that were received from these industrial leaders, and what was done with them? A. I must say under oath I do not know anything about the amount of money given by these industrial leaders. All I know is that Brigadefuehrer Kranefuss, and Obergruppenfuehrer Wolff, and Baron von Schroeder, that among these three men all things were discussed. One could observe from the whole discussion that developed between Kranefuss and Schroeder, that they were on very good terms with each other, and they settled these matters among each other. Q. How much money was turned over to Hitler out of this fund? A. I have no idea. I do not believe that Hitler received any money from these funs connected with the personnel administration of Obergruppenfuehrer Wolff, who did not permit anybody to take any look at it.
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