The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: imt/tgmwc//tgmwc-12/tgmwc-12-110.10

Archive/File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-12/tgmwc-12-110.10
Last-Modified: 2000/01/22


Q. Defendant Rosenberg, I am going to read this document
into the record. It is not very long.

  "6 February, 1938. My Fuehrer, because I was unable ..."

THE PRESIDENT: The document is translated into German, isn't

GENERAL RUDENKO: The original is in German.

THE PRESIDENT: It is in German to start with. It is not
necessary to read it all; you can put it in like other



In this letter you expressed your resentment in connection
with the

                                                   [Page 83]

appointment of the defendant Ribbentrop as Minister of
Foreign Affairs. Is that correct?

A. Yes, yes.

Q. You thought that the post of the Minister of Foreign
Affairs in the Hitler Cabinet could have been filled by
yourself, defendant Rosenberg; is that correct?

A. Yes, and I do not find it so extraordinary that I should
have expressed my wish to be used in the State service of
the German Reich after so many years of activity.

Q. Very well. You speak in this letter of the existence of
the Secret Cabinet is that correct?

A. Well, may I read through this letter a little? Because I
cannot answer fragmentary questions.

Q. Very well, yes. Please read it through.

A. Yes, I have read this.

Q. Everything that is contained in it, is it correct?

A. Certainly, yes.

Q. This is your own letter?

A. Yes.

Q. You asked to be appointed into this Secret Cabinet?

A. Yes.

Q. You asked for the position of Reich Minister?

A. I reported that I had spoken to Party Member Goering
about the question of the appointment, and since the Fuehrer
had charged me with the ideological education of the Party,
and since the foreign political office of the Party still
existed, and the impression might thereby arise in the Party
that I had somehow been refused by the Fuehrer, I therefore
asked the Fuehrer to receive me personally to discuss this
matter. I think it quite understandable that I should
express the wish to speak about a matter which was important
to me personally.

Q. Therefore-here is my last question - you were the nearest
associate of Hitler in carrying out all his plans and his

A. No, that is not correct; that is absolutely wrong.

Q. Very well, let us consider it as a reply to my question.

GENERAL RUDENKO: I have finished, Mr. President.

M. MONNERAY: I have only a few questions to ask the


Q. Defendant Rosenberg, is it correct that the deportation
and the execution of the Jews in France gave your
organisation the possibility to seize furniture and
valuables which belonged to these Jews?

A. It is quite true that I received a governmental order to
confiscate archives, works of art, and later, household
goods of Jewish citizens in France.

Q. The mass deportation of Jews could only increase the
profits of your confiscation and seizures. Isn't that so?

A. No. The deportation of Jews has nothing to do with that.
The suggestion for these measures was given only when I was
informed that the Jewish people in question no longer
inhabited their institutions, castles and apartments, that
they had left Paris and had not returned.

Q. Once the Jews were deported they were absent, isn't that

A. When the German troops marched in, Paris was almost
entirely depopulated. The rest of the Parisians and
inhabitants of cities in the north of France returned in
time, but, as I have been informed, the Jewish population
did not return to these cities, particularly not to Paris.
Therefore they had not been deported, but they had fled, I
believe the number of those who had fled was given as 5, 6
or 7 millions or more.

Q. Do you mean to say by that, defendant Rosenberg, that in
the time that followed, when new deportation measures were
carried out in the course of the

                                                   [Page 84]

German occupation of France, the apartments and homes of
people deported were not seized by your organisation?

A. No, I cannot express it that way. It may very well I be
that the apartments of Jewish persons who had been arrested
may also have been confiscated under certain circumstances,
but I cannot give any exact information about that.

Q. One can therefore say that the deportation measures gave
to your organisation a greater chance of succeeding in
seizures and confiscations; isn't that true?

A. No, that does not agree with the facts; but, as may be
seen from the report which the French Prosecution made here,
what actually happened was that confiscated apartments were
sealed by the police. Two months were allowed to elapse to
see whether or not the owners of these apartments would
return, and only after the fact had been established that
this was not the case were the household goods transferred
to Germany for those whose homes had been damaged by bombs.
That can be seen from the report which the French
Prosecution has submitted.

Q. I suppose that there are very few cases - and I am sure
you would agree with me on that - of people who had been
deported returning after two months?

A. On the contrary! I was informed about such cases. Even in
Document 001-PS, regrettable as it is from the humane point
of view, it is clearly stated that we had heard that a large
number of Jewish people who had been formerly arrested had
been released again.

Q. You remember, certainly, the memorandum which you sent to
Hitler on 3 October, 1942, which has already been presented
to the Tribunal as Exhibit 1327-RF. In that document you
remind Hitler of your jurisdiction and your powers, and you
say that it is a matter for you, as Reich Minister for the
occupied Eastern Territories, to seize the homes of Jews who
had taken flight, who were absent, or who were ordered to
leave. I can submit this document to you in order to refresh
your memory if necessary.

The first lines of that document are the ones I am referring
to. I emphasise the words "the Jews who were called upon to
leave later." It is a document of 3 October, 1942, which has
already been submitted.

A. Yes, that is correct, that is according to facts and, as
I said before, it is possible that a number of apartments of
arrested people, other people who were absent, were included
in that; but as I said before, in the other report there was
more detailed information. But this document as such
corresponds to the facts. It is a letter from me.

Q. The consequence of this act was that you were entrusted
not only with the seizure of apartments which you found
vacant at the time of the arrival of the Germans in Paris,
but also of apartments of people who were, as you say,
called upon to leave in the following period.

You surely know, defendant Rosenberg, under what conditions,
in territories occupied by the Germans in the West as well
as in the East, Jews were called upon to leave, namely, in
special trains which generally led to concentration camps.

A. No, I did not know about those trains. We definitely
dealt with deserted apartments, and I was probably informed
that, eventually, also the apartments of people who bad been
arrested, people who were still living or had long since
fled, would be included. Nothing more is stated here, and I
could not give you any further information. As to the
reports which have been submitted here at the trial, I have
seen them here for the first time. I can only tell you that
in the end I was informed that before the conquest of Paris
by Allied troops, all available furniture and household
equipment was turned over to the French Red Cross.

Q. Do you agree with me on the following point: that your
organisation had the right to seize valuables and apartments
which had become vacant after the

                                                   [Page 85]

arrival of the German troops in Paris? Do you agree with me
on that point?

A. Yes.

Q. Defendant, you have just said that you had no knowledge
whatsoever of the deportations in special trains to special
destinations. Do you know - and I suppose you do know it
since the document to which I am referring has already been
produced before the Tribunal - that in Paris every Tuesday
since 1941 and until the end of the German occupation,
conferences called "Tuesday meetings," brought together the
representatives of the various German organisations in
Paris, that is to say, the experts in Jewish affairs in the
different German administrative offices to be exact, a
representative of the German Military Command, a
representative of the Administrative Department, a
representative of the Police Department, and a
representative of the Economics Department. At these
meetings there was also present a representative of the
German Embassy in Paris, as well as a representative of your
Special Staff.

I am referring to Exhibit 1210-RF, which is a report of
Dannecker of 22 February, 1942. He was the responsible Chief
and the great expert an anti-Jewish terrorist action in
Paris during the occupation. If you wish, I will submit that
document to you.

A. I remember these declarations made during the Trial very
well, but I have never received a report about these Tuesday
conferences which took place regularly. The fact that my
deputy for the "furniture action" had to maintain closest
liaison with the police was a matter of course, since the
confiscations of such articles could not be carried out by
my office, that being an exclusive right of the police.
Therefore one had to speak to the police about these
matters. No reports came to me of proceedings at such
Tuesday conferences. I believe that if such reports had been
consistently sent in they would have been submitted to me.

Q. You agree, however, that these Tuesday meetings were
extremely useful to the interests of your organisation. As a
matter of fact the various collective actions which were
taken against the Jews, that is to say, arrests, police
raids and deportations, were discussed at those meetings.
Didn't it, therefore, seem completely logical and natural
for your organisation to be regularly informed of these
actions in order that it might take the resulting economic
steps, namely, seizures of property?

A. In my opinion that is not logical at all, because if a
certain Chief of Police sent secret transports of that kind
into these camps, as has been revealed here, then it does
not follow that he would report about that every Tuesday to
the other gentlemen. Neither do I believe that this Chief of
Police informed the representative of the Foreign Office
about these things in detail.

Q. You are perhaps badly informed on this point, but I would
like to read again the concluding passage of the report
which says:

  "The conference had as a result an alignment of Jewish
  policy as complete as could be realised in the occupied
  territory ..."

THE PRESIDENT: (Interposing) The witness has said, has he
not, that he does not know anything about these Tuesday
meetings, he received no reports of them?

M. MONNERAY: Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Then why are you asking about them?

M. MONNERAY: The agencies in Paris collaborated actively in
the terrorist policy of the police and benefited by it
through the economic step which followed, namely, the
seizure of valuables.

THE PRESIDENT: You have not been able to connect him with
these reports, with the document. He has not signed the
document. Nothing shows on the document that he received it,
at least I suppose not, or you would have put it to him. He
says he did not know the document.

                                                   [Page 86]

M. MONNERAY: Allow me, Mr. President, in that case to ask,
whether he contests the accuracy of the evidence concerning
the representation of his Paris organisation at this


Q. Do you deny that your organisation was represented at
this meeting?

A. I cannot give any information about that because I have
not received any report.

Q. I would like to conclude this cross-examination by
reminding you of a document which has already been produced,
quoted, and discussed, that is, 001-PS. In that document,
the defendant in the first paragraph proposes the transport
of all seized household goods to the East, and in paragraph
2 he suggests to Hitler that some French Jews instead of
other Frenchmen should be shot as hostages.

Considering, as a result of the questions and answers, that
the organisation of the defendant could benefit by measures
of execution and deportation, it seems that the real motive
of this document is very clear. It is necessary - isn't that
your opinion, defendant - first to get rid of the people, in
order to be able afterwards to seize their property?

A. No, that is not true.

M. MONNERAY: I have no more questions to ask, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Do you want to ask anything of the witness,
Dr. Thoma?

DR. THOMA: Mr. President, may I quite briefly ask the
defendant whether he wants me to ask him another question? I
believe I shall have finished immediately.


DR. THOMA: Thank you. The defendant does not want any more
questions. Then, with the permission of the Tribunal, I
should like to call the witness Riecke.

THE PRESIDENT: Will he be long or not?

DR. THOMA: Half an hour at most.

THE PRESIDENT: All right. Well then, the defendant may

HANS JOACHIM RIECKE, a witness, took the stand and testified
as follows:


Q. What is your name?

A. Hans Joachim Riecke.

Q. Will you repeat this oath after me?

I swear by God, the almighty and omniscient, that I will
speak the pure truth and will withhold and add nothing.

(The witness repeated the oath.)

THE PRESIDENT: You may sit down.

Dr. Thoma, will you spell the name, please?

DR. THOMA: R-i-e-c-k-e.


Q. Witness, what position did you have in the Economic Staff
East and in the Eastern Ministry?

A. I had two positions upon orders from Goering. I was in
charge of the Nutrition and Agriculture Department.

                                                   [Page 87]

Q. What was the task of these offices?

A. The main task of these offices was the reconstruction of
Russian agriculture; the second task was the utilisation of
the surplus of the areas in the South for the Armed Forces
and for nutrition purposes.

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.