The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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    B. Military Conclusions.

        (1) The preparations are to be made for the

        political possibilities (2 and 3) Case 2 is the

        undesired one since 'Gruen' will have taken

        security measures.

        (2) The loss of time caused by transporting the

        bulk of the divisions by rail - which is

        unavoidable, but should be cut down as far as

        possible - must not impede a lightning-swift blow

        at the time of the action.

        (3) 'Separate thrusts' are to be carried out

        immediately with a view to penetrating the enemy

        fortification lines at numerous points and in a

        strategically favourable direction. The thrusts are

        to be worked out to tile smallest detail (knowledge

        of roads, targets, composition of the columns

        according to their individual tasks.) Simultaneous

        attacks by the Army and Air Force.


        The Air Force is to support the individual columns

        (for example dive-bombers sealing of installations

        at penetration points, hampering the bringing up of

        reserves, destroying signal communications traffic,

        thereby isolating the garrisons).

        (4) Politically, the first four days of military

        action are the decisive ones. If there are no

        effective military successes, a European crisis

        will certainly arise. Accomplished facts must prove

        the senselessness of foreign military intervention,

        draw Allies into the scheme (division of spoils)

        and demoralise 'Gruen.'


    Therefore: bridging the time gap between first

    penetration and employment

                                                  [Page 165]

    of the forces to be brought up, by a determined and

    ruthless thrust by a motorised army. (For example via

    Pilsen, Prague.)

    (5) if possible, separation of transport movement 'Rot'

    from 'Gruen.'"


    'Rot' was the code name for their then plan against the



    "A simultaneous strategic concentration 'Rot' can lead

    'Rot' to undesired measures. On the other hand, it must

    be possible to put 'Case Rot' into operation, at any



    C. Propaganda.

        (1) Leaflets on the conduct of Germans in

        Czechoslovakia (Gruenland).

        (2) Leaflets with threats for intimidation of the

        Czechs (Gruenen)."

    (Initialled by Schmundt.)"

In the reading of this document, the Tribunal doubtless

noted particularly paragraph 3, under the heading "Political

Aspect", which reads as follows: "Lightning-swift action as

the result of an incident (example: Assassination of German

ambassador as an upshot of an anti-German demonstration)."

The document as a whole, establishes that the conspirators

were planning the creation of an incident to justify to the

world their own aggression against Czechoslovakia. It

established, I submit, that consideration was being given to

assassinating the German ambassador at Prague to create the

requisite incident. This is alleged in paragraph 3(c) of

section IV (F) of the Indictment, appearing at page 8 of the

printed English text of the Indictment.

As the Indictment was being read, at the opening of the

case, when this particular allegation was reached, the

defendant Goering shook his head slowly and solemnly in the

negative. I can well understand that he would have shaken

his head, if he believed the allegation of the Indictment to

be untrue. In the course of Mr. Justice Jackson's opening

address, when this same matter was referred to, the

defendant Goering again solemnly shook his head. On this

allegation the prosecution stands on the evidence just

submitted, the denials of the defendant Goering


If the Court please, would this be a convenient time to

recess ?

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will adjourn now until 2


(A recess was taken until 14.00 hours.)

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Alderman.

MR. ALDERMAN: May it please the Tribunal, as I suggested

earlier, the next phase of the aggression was the

formulation and execution of the plan to attack Poland, and

with it the resulting initiation of aggressive war in Poland

in September 1939. This is covered by paragraphs 4 a) and

(b) of Section IV (in) of the Indictment appearing on page 9

of the printed English text.

Here again the careful and meticulous record-keeping of the

Adjutant Schmundt has provided us with a document in his own

handwriting, which lets the cat out of the bag. That may be

a troublesome colloquialism to translate. I don't know. The

document consists of minutes of a conference held on the

23rd May, 1939. The place of the conference was the

Fuehrer's study in the New Reich  Chancellery. The defendant

Goering was present

(The defendant Frick at this point made a statement in

German, which was not translated.)

MR. ALDERMAN: I think one of the defendants indicated I had

referred to the wrong year. My notes show the 23rd May,

1939. That is shown by the original document.

THE PRESIDENT: Which is the document you are referring to?

MR. ALDERMAN: That is document L-79. As I said, the

defendant Goering was present. The defendant Raeder was

present. The defendant Keitel was present. The subject of

the meeting was, and I quote: "Indoctrination on the

political situation and future aims." This document is of

historical importance, second not even to the political will

and testament of the Fuehrer, recorded by Adjutant Hoszbach.

                                                  [Page 166]

The original of this document when captured found its way

through the complicated channels across the Atlantic to the

United States. There it was found by members of the staff of

the American prosecution, by them taken to London, and

thence to Nuremberg. The "L" on the identifying number

indicates that it is one of the documents which were

assembled in London and brought here from there. We think

the document is of unquestioned validity. Its authenticity

and its accuracy as a record of what transpired at the

meeting of 23rd May, 1939, stands admitted by the defendant

Keitel in one of his interrogations. As I say, the number is

document L-79 in our numbered series. I offer it in evidence

as exhibit USA 27.

This document also is of such great importance historically

and as bearing on the issues now presented to the Tribunal

that I feel obliged to read most of it. At the top: Geheime

Reichssache "Top Secret."

   "To be transmitted by officer only.



             of a Conference on 23rd May, 1939.

     Place: The Fuehrer's Study, New Reich Chancellery.

         Adjutant on duty: Lt.-Col. (G.S.) Schmundt.


   Present: The Fuehrer, Field Marshal Goering, Grand

   Admiral Raeder, Col.-Gen. Von Brauchitsch, Col.-Gen.

   Keitel, Col.-Gen. Milch, Gen. (of artillery) Halder,

   Gen. Bodenschatz, Rear-Adml. Schniewindt, Col. (G.S.)

   Joschennek, Col. (G.S.) Warlimont, Lt.-Col. (G.S.)

   Schmundt, Capt. Engel (Army), Lieut.-Commd Albrecht,

   Capt. V. Below (Army).


   Subject: Indoctrination on the political situation and

   future aims.


   The Fuehrer defined as the purpose of the conference

      (1) Analysis of the situation.

      (2) Definition of the tasks for the Armed Forces

      arising from that situation.

      (3) Exposition of the consequences of those tasks.

      (4) Ensuring the secrecy of all decisions and work

      resulting from those consequences. Secrecy is the

      first essential for success.


   The Fuehrer's observations are given in systematised

   form below.


   Our present situation must be considered from two points

   of view

      (1) The actual development of events between 1933 and


      (2) The permanent and unchanging situation in which

      Germany lies.


   In the period 1933-1939, progress was made in all

   fields. Our military situation improved enormously.


   Our situation with regard to the rest of the world has

   remained the same.


   Germany had dropped from the circle of Great Powers. The

   balance of power had been effected without the

   participation of Germany.


   This equilibrium is disturbed when Germany's demands for

   the necessities of life make themselves felt, and

   Germany re-emerges as a Great Power. All demands ire

   regarded as 'Encroachments'. The English are more afraid

   of dangers in the economic sphere than of the simple

   threat of force.


   A mass of 80 million people has solved the ideological

   problems. So, too, must the economic problems be solved.

   No German can evade the creation of the necessary

   economic conditions for this. The solution of the

   problems demands coverage. The principle, by which one

   evades solving the problem by adapting oneself to

   circumstances, is inadmissible. Circumstances must

   rather be adapted to aims. This is impossible without

   invasion of foreign states or attacks upon foreign



   Living space, in proportion to the magnitude of the

   State, is the basis of all power. One may refuse for a

   time to face the problem, but finally it is solved


                                                  [Page 167]


   one way or the other. The choice is between advancement

   or decline. In fifteen or twenty years' time we shall be

   compelled to find a solution. No German statesman can

   evade the question longer than that.


   We are at present in a state of patriotic fervour, which

   is by two other nations: Italy and Japan.


   The period which lies behind us has indeed been put to

   good use. All measures have been taken in the correct

   sequence and in harmony with our aims.


   After six years, the situation is today as follows:


   The national-political unity of the Germans has been

   achieved apart from minor exceptions."

I suppose they were those in the concentration camps. -

   "Further successes cannot be obtained without the

   shedding of blood.


   The demarcation of frontiers is of military importance.


   The Pole is no 'supplementary enemy.' Poland will always

   be on the side of our adversaries. In spite of treaties

   of friendship, Poland has always had the secret

   intention of exploiting every opportunity to do us harm.


   Danzig is not the subject of the dispute at all. It is a

   question of expanding our living space in the East and

   of securing our food supplies, of the settlement of the

   Baltic problem. Food supplies can be expected only from

   thinly populated areas. Over and above the natural

   fertility, thoroughgoing German exploitation will

   enormously increase the surplus.


   There is no other possibility for Europe.


   Colonies: Beware of gifts of colonial territory. This

   does not solve the food problem. Remember - blockade.


   If fate brings us into conflict with the West, the

   possession of extensive areas in the East will be

   advantageous. We shall be able to rely upon record

   harvests even less in time of war than in peace.


   The population of non-German areas will perform no

   military service, but will be available as a source of

   labour. The Polish problem is inseparable from conflict

   with the West.


   Poland's internal power of resistance to Bolshevism is

   doubtful. Thus Poland is of doubtful value as a barrier

   against Russia.


   It is questionable whether military success in the West

   can be achieved by a quick decision; questionable too is

   the attitude of Poland.


   The Polish government will not resist pressure from

   Russia. Poland sees danger in a German victory in the

   West, and will attempt to rob us of that victory.


   There is therefore no question of sparing Poland, and we

   are left with the decision:


   To attack Poland at the first suitable opportunity. "

That, if the Court please, is underscored in the original

German text.

   "We cannot expect a repetition of the Czech affair.

   There will be war. Our task is to isolate Poland. The

   success of the isolation will be decisive.


   Therefore, the Fuehrer must reserve the right to give

   the final order to attack.


   There must be no simultaneous conflict with the Western

   Powers (France and England).


   If it is not certain that a German-Polish conflict will

   not lead to war in the West, then the fight must be

   primarily against England and France.


   Fundamentally therefore: Conflict with Poland -

   beginning with an attack on Poland - will only be

   successful if the Western Powers keep out of it. If this

   is impossible, then it will be better to attack in the

   West and to settle Poland at the same time.


   The isolation of Poland is a matter of skilful politics.

   Japan is a weighty problem. Even if at first, for

   various reasons, her collaboration with us appears to be

   somewhat cool and restricted, it is nevertheless in

   Japan's own interest to take the initiative in attacking

   Russia in good time.


   Economic relations with Russia are possible only if

   political relations have improved. A cautious trend is

   apparent in Press comment. It is not impossible


                                                  [Page 168]


   that Russia will show herself to be disinterested in the

   destruction of Poland Should Russia take steps to oppose

   us, our relations with Japan may become closer.


   If there were an alliance of France, England and Russia

   against Germany, Italy and Japan, 1 would be constrained

   to attack England and France with a few annihilating

   blows. The Fuehrer doubts the possibility of a peaceful

   settlement with England. We must prepare ourselves for

   the conflict. England sees in our development the

   foundation of a hegemony which would weaken her. England

   is therefore our enemy, and the conflict with her will

   be a life-and-death struggle.


   What, will this struggle be like? (Underscored in the

   German original.)


   England cannot deal with Germany and subjugate her with

   a few powerful blows. It is imperative for England that

   the war should be brought as near to the Ruhr basin as

   possible. French blood will not be spared (West Wall).

   The possession of the Ruhr basin will determine the

   duration of our resistance.


   The Dutch and Belgian air bases must be occupied by

   armed forces. Declarations of neutrality must be

   ignored. If England and France intend the war between

   Germany and Poland to lead to a conflict, they will

   support Holland and Belgium in their neutrality and make

   them build fortifications in order finally to force them

   into co-operation.


   Albeit under protest, Belgium and Holland will yield to



   Therefore, if England intends to intervene in the Polish

   war, we must occupy Holland with lightning speed. We

   must aim at securing a new defence line on Dutch soil up

   to the Zuider Zee.


   The war with England and France will be a life-and-death



   The idea that we can get off cheaply is dangerous; there

   is no such possibility. We must burn our boats, and it

   is no longer a question of justice or injustice, but of

   life or death for 80 million human beings.


   Question: Short or long war?


   Every country's armed forces or government must aim at a

   short war. The government, however, must also be

   prepared for a war of 10-15 years' duration.


   History has always shown that people have believed that

   wars would be short. In 1914, the opinion still

   prevailed that it was impossible to finance a long war.

   Even today this idea still persists in many minds. But

   on the contrary, every state will hold out as long as

   possible, unless it immediately suffers some grave

   weakening (for example Ruhr basin). England has similar



   England knows that to lose a war will mean the end of

   her world power.


   "England is the driving force against Germany " (which

   translated literally means: "England is the motor

   driving against Germany.")

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