The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: imt/tgmwc//tgmwc-11/tgmwc-11-100.04

Archive/File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-11/tgmwc-11-100.04
Last-Modified: 2000/01/04

Q. Then you still believe that if it had happened, it would
have meant the collapse of the policy instituted by Hitler?

A. Yes, one would have had to expect that.

Q. Considering Weygand's personality only.

A. Yes.

Q. Can you give any other explanation, or any proof that the
designs attributed to you, but which were never put into
practice, had no foundation in fact?

A. Although it was at a much later date that General Weygand
was taken to Germany, on the occupation of the hitherto
unoccupied zone of France, I can only say that I was told by
the Fuehrer himself that he had given orders for the General
to be interned in his own home, without having to be
bothered by guards - an honourable imprisonment and not the
treatment accorded to an ordinary prisoner of war. Of
course, that was in 1942.

Q. Therefore, you deny under oath that you gave any order or
expressed yourself in any way which might lead to the
conclusion that you intended or wished General Weygand to be
put out of the way?

A. Yes. I definitely deny that.

Q. The witness Lahousen also spoke of Giraud and described
the case much in the same way as that of Weygand. In neither
case was he in a position to say from his own first-hand
knowledge that you have given such an order, but he

                                                   [Page 46]

reported what Canaris had told him and illustrated his
testimony by means of later events. I ask you to tell us
what you know about the case of Giraud, which created a
sensation at the time, and to say what part you took in
discussions regarding him.

A. First phase: Giraud's escape from the Fortress of
Koenigstein near Dresden on 19th April, 1942, created a
sensation; and I was severely reprimanded about the guarding
of the General's quarters, military fortress, etc. The
escape was successful despite all attempts to recapture him
on his way back to France either by police or military

Canaris had instructions from me to keep a particularly
sharp watch on all the places at which he might cross the
frontier into France or Alsace-Lorraine - so that we could
recapture him. The police were also put on to this job.
Eight or ten days after his escape it was made known that
the General had arrived safely back in France. If I issued
any orders during this search I probably used the words I
gave in the preliminary interrogations, namely: "We must get
the General back, dead or alive." I probably did say
something like that. He had escaped and was in France.

Second phase: Efforts made through the Legation, Abetz,
Foreign Minister Ribbentrop, to induce the General to return
to captivity of his own accord, appeared to be promising, as
the General had declared himself willing to go to the
occupied zone to discuss the matter. I was of the opinion
that the General might possibly do it on account of the
concessions made to Petain regarding personal wishes in
connection with the release of French Generals in captivity.
The meeting with General Giraud took place in occupied
territory, at the Staff H.Q. of a German Army Corps, where
the question of his return was discussed. The Military
Commander informed me by telephone of the General's presence
in occupied territory at the hotel where the German officers
were billeted.

The Commander suggested that if the General would not return
voluntarily it would be a very simple matter to apprehend

I at once refused categorically to consider any such thing;
for I regarded it a breach of faith. The General had come
trusting to receive proper treatment, and he returned

Third phase: The attempt or desire to get the General back
somehow in military custody arose from the fact that Canaris
told me that the General's family was in territory occupied
by German troops, and it was almost certain that he would
try to see his family, even if only after a certain period
of time and when things had quietened down. He suggested to
me that measures be taken to recapture the General if he
made a visit of this kind in occupied territory. Canaris
said that he himself would initiate these preparations
through his Counter Intelligence office in Paris and through
his other establishments. Nothing happened for some time,
and it was surely quite natural that on several occasions,
no matter who was with Canaris - perhaps Lahousen - I should
ask: "What's happening to Giraud?" or: "How is the Giraud
affair getting on?" Lahousen replied: "It is very difficult;
but we shall do everything we can." That was his answer.
Canaris made no reply. That strikes me as significant now;
but at the time it did not occur to me.

Fourth phase: This began with Hitler's saying, to me: "This
is all nonsense. We are not getting results. Counter
Intelligence is not capable of this and can not handle this
matter. I will turn it over to Himmler and Counter
Intelligence had better keep out of this, for they will
never get hold of the General again."

Admiral Canaris said at the time that he was counting on
having the necessary security measures taken by the French
secret State police if General Giraud went to the occupied
zone; and a fight might result, as the General was known to
be a spirited soldier - a man who, at the age of sixty,
lowers himself 45 metres over a cliff by means of a rope.
That is how he escaped from Koenigstein.

                                                   [Page 47]

Fifth phase: Canaris's desire to transfer the matter to the
secret State police (which Lahousen said was done as a
result of representations from the departmental heads) -
because I asked how matters stood and he wanted to get rid
of this uncomfortable mission. Canaris came to me and asked
if he could pass it on to Reich Security Office or the
police. I said "Yes," because the Fuehrer had already told
me repeatedly that he wanted to hand it over to Himmler.

Next phase: I wanted to warn Canaris some time later, when
Himmler came to see me and informed me that he had received
orders from Hitler to have Giraud and his family watched
unobtrusively and that I was to stop Canaris from taking any
action in the case - he had been told that Canaris was
working along parallel lines. I immediately agreed.

Now we come to the phase which Lahousen has described at
length. I asked about "Gustav" and similar questions. I
wanted to direct Canaris immediately to stop all his
activities in the matter, as Hitler had confirmed the order.

What happened in Paris according to Lahousen's detailed
reports, that excuses were sought, etc., that the matter was
thought to be very mysterious, e.g. Gustav as an
abbreviation for Giraud - all this is fancy rather than
fact. I had Canaris summoned to me at once, for he was in
Paris and not in Berlin. He had done nothing at all, right
from the start. He was thus in a highly uncomfortable
position with regard to me for he had lied to me. When he
came I only said, "You will have nothing more to do in this
matter; keep clear of it."

Then came the next phase: The General's escape without
difficulty to North Africa by plane, which was suddenly
reported - if I remember correctly - before the invasion of
North Africa by the Anglo-American troops. That ended the
business. No action was ever taken by the Counter
Intelligence whom I had charged to watch him, or by the
police; and I certainly never even used the words "To do
away with the General."

The final phase of this entire affair may sound like
fiction, but it is fact nevertheless. The General sent a
plane from North Africa to the Lyons district of France in
February or March, 1944, with a liaison officer who reported
to the Counter Intelligence and asked if the General could
return to France, and what would happen to him on landing in
France. The question was turned over to me. Colonel General
Jodl is my witness that these things actually happened. The
chief of the Counter Intelligence was with me. The answer
was: "Exactly the same treatment as General Weygand, who is
already in Germany. There is no doubt that the Fuehrer will

Nothing came of this, but all that I have described did
actually happen.

Q. To complete our information, I must ask you a few
questions, for the French prosecution has mentioned that
later the family of General Giraud suffered inconveniences
or losses of a rather serious nature. When you were
investigating Giraud or his family, who were living in
occupied France, did you cause them any trouble? Did you
give any directives which would confine or inconvenience the
family in any way?

A. No. I only had an unobtrusive watch kept on the family's
residence in order to receive information of any visit which
the General might have planned. But no steps of any kind
were taken against the family. It would have been foolish in
this case.

Q. To make matters quite clear: you had no knowledge of
anything having happened later on?

A. No.

Q. Well, General Giraud is still alive and I will only ask
you, in conclusion, under your oath: Can you confirm that
you did not at any time give an order or a directive which
might be interpreted to mean that General Giraud was to be

A. No. I never gave such an order, unless the phrase "We
must have him back, dead or alive" is interpreted in that
way. I never gave orders that the General was to be killed
or done away with, or anything of the kind. Never.

                                                   [Page 48]

DR. NELTE: I have concluded my direct examination of the
defendant Keitel. May I ask you to permit me to submit in
evidence the affidavit - the last one - in Document Book
Number 2. I would like to submit that affidavit in evidence.
It begins on Page 51.

THE PRESIDENT: Did you not put that in as K-12 yesterday?

DR. NELTE : Today I submit it as K- 13.

THE PRESIDENT: This affidavit that you want to submit now,
where is it and what is the date of it?

DR. NELTE: It is Page 51, and it is dated 9th March, 1946.


DR. NELTE: This affidavit has also been attested to by
Colonel General Jodl. I ask permission to question him about
it, or to show it to him for confirmation when he is called
to the witness stand.


MR. DODD: If the Tribunal please, we have looked into the
matter of the so-called interrogation of General von
Falkenhorst referred to yesterday by Dr. Nelte, and in so
far as we can determine, this paper was never offered in
evidence by any members of the prosecution. It was referred
to by M. Dubost, or rather, it was not referred to by him
but it was included in his brief. I did not refer to it and
I did not offer it in evidence. That is how it came into the
hands of Dr. Nelte, but not in evidence.

THE PRESIDENT: Does Dr. Nelte want to offer it in evidence

DR. NELTE: I ask to submit it as Exhibit K-14.

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. Now, do any of the other defence
counsel want to ask questions?

DR. STAHMER (counsel for defendant Goering): Witness, you
have corrected your former statement by answering the
question put by your counsel to the effect that Reich
Marshal Goering was not present at the conference in which
Hitler gave orders for the airmen who had escaped from the
Sagan Camp to be held by the police. You further said that a
briefing conference with Goering in Berlin did not take
place. Therefore I only have the following question. Some
weeks after that escape, did you receive a letter from the
Quartermaster General of the General Staff of the Luftwaffe
informing you that the Luftwaffe wanted to hand over their
prison camps to the O.K.W.?

A. Yes, I received this letter and following an interview
with Hitler I declined the offer.

DR. STAHMER: I have no more questions.

DR. SEIDL (counsel for defendant Frank): At the beginning of
the war, the defendant Frank was a lieutenant of the 9th
Infantry Regiment; is that correct?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you remember receiving a letter from Frank, who was
then Governor General, in 1942, saying that he wanted to
rejoin the Wehrmacht? The purpose of that letter was, of
course, that he might in this way be relieved of his office.
Is that so?

A. Yes, I received such a letter, and handed it to the
Fuehrer, who merely made a movement with his hands and said
"Out of the question." I informed Frank of that decision
through the liaison officer who was with him at the time.

DR. DIX (counsel for defendant Schacht): Sir, it is three
minutes to one and it will not take me very long, but it
might take me beyond one o'clock, so it might be better to
adjourn now. I would then put my question to the witness
after the intermission.

THE PRESIDENT: Very well, we will adjourn until two o'clock.

(The Tribunal adjourned until 14.00 hours.)

                                                   [Page 49]

DR. DIX (counsel for defendant Schacht): May it please the
Tribunal, this witness is competent and an expert who can
give the Tribunal definite figures about the armament
expenditures of the Reich. However, the witness is certainly
not in a position to remember these figures at all times.
Professor Kraus, my colleague, therefore, during my absence,
was kind enough to take down these figures and to check them
in co-operation with the witness. The written deposition was
signed by the witness at that time, in order to avoid any
misunderstanding. In order to assist his memory, I now ask
your permission to have submitted to the witness this
deposition which he has signed. I have had translations made
of this deposition into the three languages in question and
I now submit to the Tribunal eight copies. I also have four
copies for the four delegations of the prosecution, and
German copies for the counsels of the defendants Keitel,
Jodl, Raeder, Donitz, and the O.K.W. May I ask for just one
moment so that the witness can read it?


Q. Witness, would you please look at the first column only,
which bears the heading "Total Expenditures." The second and
the third column show which of those sums were raised
through the Reichsbank and which were raised from other
sources. These figures I should like to have certified
during the interrogation of Schacht himself, because they
were the results of Schacht's calculations and the witness
here can therefore give no information about them. May I ask
you concerning these armament expenditures of the Reich
beginning with the fiscal year of 1935 - the fiscal year
running from 1st April to 31st March.

Are the figures stated herein of 5 billions for 1935, 7
billions for 1936, 9 billions for 1937, 11 billions for
1938, and 20.5 billions for 1939, are these figures correct?

A. According to my conviction these figures are correct. May
I add that at the beginning of my captivity I also had an
opportunity to speak to the Reich Finance Minister about
these figures and to co-ordinate our opinions.

Q. Now, a question about the armament strength of the Reich
on 1st April, 1938. Is it correct to say that at that time
there existed: 24 infantry divisions, 1 armoured division,
no mechanised divisions, 1 mountain division and 1 cavalry
division; that in addition 10 infantry divisions and 1
armoured division were being formed? I wish to add, that of
the 3 reserve divisions on April, 1938, none had been
completed and only 7 to 8 were in the process of being
formed, and expected to be complete by October, 1938.

A. I consider these figures correct and I have therefore
confirmed them in this affidavit.

DR. DIX: That is as far as the deposition goes. I would like
to put two more questions to the witness, which have not
been discussed with him, so that I do not know whether he
remembers the figures in question.


Q. I consider it possible that the Tribunal would be
interested in the proportion of strength between the Reich,
on the one hand, and Czechoslovakia on the other hand at the
time of Hitler's march into Czechoslovakia; that is the
relation of strength: (a) concerning the armed might, and
(b) concerning the civilian population.

A. I cannot give accurate figures about that. In the
previous interrogation I was questioned about it and I
believe the figures will be correct if I say that in the
autumn of 1938, going by combined formations, divisional
combined formations ...

Q. You said 1938?

A. Yes, 1938.

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.