The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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 (I pass to a quotation on Page 83 of the report)-:

  "They immediately seized the valuable apparatus,
  instruments and scientific equipment in many of the
  occupied institutions. The scientific libraries were
  systematically and methodically damaged. Scientific books
                                                  [Page 182]
  and films were extracted and taken away, the archives of
  the Academic Senate (the Highest University Authority)
  were torn up or burned, the card-indices destroyed and
  Suppression of Czech Schools.
  K. H. Frank, in November, 1939, personally ordered the
  closing of all Czech higher educational institutions.
  Such university students as were still at liberty were
  forbidden to exercise any intellectual profession and
  were invited to find manual occupation within 48 hours,
  failing which they would be sent to labour camps in
  The closing of the universities was aggravated by the
  closing of the great scientific libraries and of all
  institutions capable of offering intellectual sustenance
  to the students expelled from the universities. The
  library of the University of Prague was henceforth
  accessible to Germans only.
  Suppression of all Scientific Activities.
  The closing down of Czech universities and colleges was
  merely a preliminary step towards the complete
  suppression of the entire Czech scientific life. The
  buildings of scientific institutions were converted
  either into German universities and colleges or placed at
  the disposal of the German military and civil
  authorities. The Germans removed all scientific
  instruments and books and even complete laboratories, to
  Germany, on the pretext that the Czechs would no longer
  need them. The number of works of art, pictures, statues
  and rare manuscripts stolen from the Library of the
  University of Prague and from private collections cannot
  be calculated, nor can their value be estimated.
  Scientific collections were also given to German schools,
  provided they
  had not been stolen piecemeal."
I pass on to the excerpts on Page 86 of the Czechoslovak
  "Hundreds of Czech elementary and secondary schools were
  closed in 1939, and so rapid was the systematic closing
  of Czech schools during the first year of the war that,
  by the end of 1940, 6,000 of the 20,000 Czech teachers
  were unemployed.
  By September, 1942, some 6o per cent. of the Czech
  elementary schools had been closed by the Germans.
  All Czech books published during the Republican regime
  were confiscated, and the glorification of Greater
  Germany and its Fuehrer became the basis of all teaching
  at Czech elementary schools. In 1939 the number of pupils
  permitted to enter Czech secondary schools had diminished
  by 50 per cent. as compared with 1936. About 70 per cent.
  of the Czech secondary schools had been closed by the end
  of 1942. Girls had been entirely excluded from the
  secondary schools.
  Nursery schools for children between three and six were
  completely Germanised and employed only German teachers.
  Other Crimes in Cultural Spheres.
  In many towns the 'Masaryk Houses', which for the most
  part contain libraries and halls for the showing of
  educational films and for the performance of plays and
  concerts, have been confiscated and transformed into
  barracks or offices for the Gestapo. The statues they
  housed, sometimes of great artistic value, were spoiled
  and broken. A number of monuments in Prague, among them
  Bilek's 'Moses' and Mashatka's 'Memorial to the Fallen
  Legionaries' have been melted down.
  A decree of the autumn of 1942 ordered all university
  libraries to hand over all early printed Czech works and
  first editions to the Germans. The collections in the
  National Museum were pillaged and the Modern Art
                                                  [Page 183]
  Gallery, containing a unique collection of Czech art of
  the nineteenth and twentieth centuries with some precious
  specimens of foreign (mainly French) art, was closed.The
  crown jewels of the ancient Czech Kings had to be handed
  over to Heydrich.
  Translations of works by English, French and Russian
  authors, both classic and modern, were withdrawn from
  circulation. The severest censorship was applied to the
  works of modern Czech authors. The Germans liquidated
  many leading publishing firms."

(A recess was taken.)

  "The entire political literature of the Free Republic, as
  well as the works of the Czech participants in the
  Renaissance of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries,
  were withdrawn. The books of Jewish authors were banned,
  as well as those of politically unreliable writers. The
  Germans withdrew the Czech classics, as well as the works
  of the fifteenth century reformer Jan Hus, of Alois
  Irassek, the author of historical novels, the poet Victor
  Dieck, and others."

Thus the Hitlerites destroyed the national culture of the
peoples of Czechoslovakia, plundered and pillaged works of
art, literature and science.

In Poland, as in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia, the German
fascist invaders carried out a large-scale liquidation of
national culture with exceptional cruelty. The Hitlerite
conspirators destroyed the Polish intelligentsia, closed
educational establishments, prohibited the publication of
Polish books, looted works of art, blew up and burned
national monuments.

I am reading into the record relevant extracts from the
Polish Government report, which was submitted to the
Tribunal as Exhibit USSR 93. These excerpts, your Honours,
are on Pages 197-200 of the document book:-

  "Annihilation of the Polish Intelligentsia.
  In the incorporated regions, the intelligentsia were
  deprived of all means of livelihood. Many of them -
  professors, teachers, lawyers and judges - were interned
  in concentration camps or murdered.
  In the Government General about 80 per cent. of the
  intelligentsia were deprived of all means of subsistence.
  Owing to the liquidation of the press, journalists and
  writers were unable to earn a living. The publication of
  new books was prohibited.
  Four universities and twelve schools of the university
  type ceased to exist. Their average attendance before
  September, 1939, reached 45,000.
  Secondary schools.
  There were about 550 secondary schools in the German
  occupied territory. Their closing was ordered. In the
  incorporated territories they were completely closed
  down. In the Government General they were allowed to
  continue their activity, but in November, 1939, an order
  was issued to cease teaching. The only schools which were
  allowed to continue work were commercial or trade
  schools. Educated Poles were not needed; the Poles were
  to become artisans and workmen. Such was the official
  programme of German policy.
  Elementary schools.
  In the incorporated territories, Polish schools were
  completely abolished. They were replaced by German
  schools. Polish children were educated in the German
  tongue and German spirit.
  On the eve of war there were about 2,000 periodicals
  published in Poland, including 170 magazines. By order of
  the Germans, the press was almost entirely eradicated.
                                                  [Page 184]
  The publication, printing and distributing of Polish
  books was prohibited as early as October, 1939.
  On the 5th November, 1940, the German Verordnungsblatt
  published the following decree:-
  'Until further notice, the publication, without
  exception, of all books, pamphlets, periodicals,
  journals, calendars and music is prohibited, unless
  published under the authority of the Government General'.
  Theatres, Music and Radio.
  The principles of German policy in Poland were outlined
  in a circular of a special branch of National Education
  and Propaganda in the German Government General. It read
  as follows:-
  'It is understood that not a single German official will
  assist in the development of Polish cultural life in any
  way whatsoever'.
  The sole purpose which was to be followed, in the words
  of the circular, was to 'satisfy the primitive demands
  for entertainment and amusement, all the more as this was
  a question of diverting as far as possible the attention
  of the intellectual circles from conspiracy or political
  debates, which encouraged the development of an anti-
  German feeling'.

I omit the last paragraph and pass on to the next page.

  "Looting, Spoliation and Destruction of Works of Art,
  Libraries and Collections."

The excerpts are on Pages 207 and 208 of the document book.

  "On 13 December, 1939, Gauleiter Wartholland issued an
  order that all public and private libraries and
  collections in the incorporated territories were to be
  registered. Upon completion of registration, libraries
  and book collections were confiscated and transported to
  the 'Buchsammelstelle.' There special experts carried out
  a selection. The final destination was either Berlin or
  the newly constituted State Library (Staatsbibliothek) in
  Poznan. Books which were considered unsuitable were sold,
  destroyed or thrown away as waste paper.
  The best and largest libraries of the country were
  victims of the organised looting in the Government
  General. Among them were the university libraries in
  Cracow and Warsaw. One of the best, though not the
  largest, was the library of the Polish Parliament. It
  consisted of about 38,000 volumes and 3,500 periodical
  publications. On 15 16 November, 1939, the main part of
  this library was transported to Berlin and Breslau.
  Ancient documents, such as, for instance, a collection of
  parchments - the property of the Central Archives - were
  also seized.
  The Diocesan Archives in Pelilin, containing twelfth-
  century documents, were burnt in the furnaces of a sugar
  The first art treasure removed from Poland was the well-
  known Altar of Wit Stosz from the Cracow Cathedral. It
  was taken to Germany on 16 December, 1939. The defendant
  Frank issued a decree concerning the confiscation of
  works of art."

I omit a few paragraphs and pass on to the last paragraph on
Page 221.

   "Three valuable pictures were removed from the galleries
   of the Czartoryski in Seniava. Frank seized and kept
   them until the 17th January, 1945, and then transferred
   them to Silesia, and thence, as his personal property,
   to Bavaria.
   National Monuments.
   In the process of destroying everything that was
   connected with Polish history and culture, many
   monuments and works of art were destroyed and
                                                  [Page 185]
   The monument of the eminent Polish King, Bolislav the
   Valiant, in Gniezno, was first wound round with ropes
   and chains, with a view to throwing it off its pedestal.
   After an unsuccessful attempt, acetylene was used: the
   head was cut off and the pedestal broken in pieces. The
   same fate befell the monument of the Sacred Heart in
   Poznan, the monuments to Chopin, the poet Slovacki, the
   composer Moniuszko, the Polish national hero Kostinshno,
   President Wilson, the greatest Polish poet Mickiewiez,
   and many others."

To the report of the Polish Government is attached a list of
public libraries, museums, books, and other collections
sacrificed to plunder and looting. These lists of things are
available on Pages 254 and 255 of the document book.

In the first list we find the names of thirty libraries;
and, in the second, of twenty-one museums and collections of
works of art which were plundered and destroyed.

I will not read these lists in full, but will mention only
some of the museums and collections which were an object of
national pride and constituted the treasure of the Polish

The following things became the booty of the German vandals:
The treasure house of the Vavelsky Cathedral in Cracow, the
Pototzky Collection in Yablonnia, the Tchartoryssky Museum
in Cracow, the National Museum in Cracow, the Museum of
Religious Art in Warsaw, the State Numismatic Collections in
Warsaw, the Palace of King Stanislav-August in the
Lazenkovsky Park, the Palace of King Jan Sobiesky in
Vilianove, the collection of Count Tarnovsky in Sukhaya, the
Religious Museum in Poznan, and many others.

The Hitlerite invaders also plundered monasteries, churches
and cathedrals.

On Page 43 of the report of the Polish Government,
corresponding to Page 223 of the document book, there are
final notes by the Polish Primate, Cardinal Glond. They
concern a written communication from Cardinal Glond to Pope
Pius XII. I shall read into the record only two paragraphs
of these concluding notes. I quote:-

  "Monasteries have been methodically suppressed, as well
  as their flourishing institutions for education,
  publishing, social welfare, charity and care of the sick.
  The houses and institutions have been seized by the army
  of the Nazi Party.
  Then the invaders confiscated or sequestrated the
  patrimony of the Church, considering themselves the
  owners of this property. The cathedrals, the episcopal
  palaces, the seminaries, the canons' residences, the
  revenues and endowments of bishoprics and chapters, the
  funds of the seminaries, all were pillaged by the

I omit the end of Page 29 and pass on to Page 30.

Yugoslavia. The destruction of the national culture of the
peoples of Yugoslavia was carried out by the Hitlerites by
various means and methods. I shall not, your Honours,
enumerate them in detail. These means and methods are
already known.

In Yugoslavia, the same thing occurred as in Poland and
Czechoslovakia. We need only stress that, in the destruction
of the culture of the peoples of Yugoslavia, the German
fascist occupants showed great ingenuity and utilised the
vast experience acquired in the other countries that they
had occupied.

The system of destruction' of the national culture of the
peoples of Yugoslavia starts with attack and pillage and
ends with mass murder camps and the ovens of the

In the report of the Yugoslav Government, presented to the
Tribunal as Exhibit USSR 36, there are quoted a large number
of facts and documents which establish, without any
possibility of doubt, the criminal deeds of the defendants
But even these numerous facts quoted in the report do not
exhaust all the crimes committed by the Hitlerites. The
report of the Yugoslav Government quotes

                                                  [Page 186]

Only typical cases as examples. I will cite a few excerpts
from this report. These excerpts, your Honours, are on Page
303 of the document book. I quote:-

  "Immediately after the invasion of Slovenia, the Germans
  started to fulfil their plans, thought out long
  beforehand, of Germanising the 'annexed' territories of

And, further, on Page 307:-

  "...The occupiers closed all the schools in Slovenia,
  exiled all the Slovene teachers, destroyed all Slovene
  libraries and books, and forbade the use of the Slovene
  language; all of which were considered as acts of

The German barbarians destroyed and plundered not only
schools and libraries; they also destroyed universities and
broadcasting stations, cultural establishments and

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