The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-01/tgmwc-01-10.04


Archive/File: imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-01/tgmwc-01-10.04
Last-Modified: 1999/09/06


THE PRESIDENT: It would assist the Tribunal if one question
at a time were asked and if the witnesses would answer "yes"
or "no" to the question asked, and explain, if they must,
afterwards. But questions and answers should be put as
shortly as possible, and only one question should be asked
at a time.

                                                  [Page 320]


Q. (continuing) Now, witness, something else has come to my
attention.

THE PRESIDENT: You heard what I said, did you? Do you
understand it?

Q. (continuing) This has come to my attention. Yesterday you
said that these remarks of Ribbentrop are not in the diary,
if I understood you correctly.

A. No - this is not from the diary but a contribution to
Canaris' diary. This is a remark which was -

Q. You also said yesterday that this remark especially
aroused your attention.

A. Yes.

Q. And to-day, you said that the then General Blaskowitz
also made a striking remark. You also mentioned, however,
that these remarks of Blaskowitz were not entered into the
diary.

A. No.

Q. Now, I would like to know, and I would like you to answer
this question: why, if this remark of the defendant
Ribbentrop aroused your special attention, was it not
entered in the diary?

A. As to Blaskowitz I have to say or, better, repeat the
following:

I have said: I did not hear the subject Blaskowitz mentioned
in this way during the meeting, and I cannot assume that
this subject had fallen into this category, otherwise it
would have been entered in the diary. It can also be, of
course, that the matter Blaskowitz discussed was at a time
when I was not actually there. I have only put down what I
heard or what Canaris told me to enter into the record.

Q. But did you personally hear that from Ribbentrop?

A. Yes, but the essence was not altered. In the final
analysis whether it was extermination, elimination or the
burning of farms, all of them were terroristic measures.

Q. Did von Ribbentrop really talk of killing Jews? Do you
definitely remember that?

A. Yes, I definitely remember this particular remark he made
to Canaris, because Canaris talked not only to me but also
to others in Vienna about this matter, and called time and
again upon me as a witness.

Q. You heard that too.

A. The matter was not settled thereby, but these words of
Ribbentrop's were frequently discussed.

Q. Witness, something else. You have told us about murderous
designs with which you or your department, or other offices,
were charged. Did you make the prescribed report at any
police station? I would like to point out that failure to
make a report of intended crimes according to German Law is
punishable with imprisonment or in some serious cases with
death.

A. Well, when you talk about German Law, I cannot follow
you. I am not a lawyer, but just a simple man.

Q. As far as I know, this is also punishable according to
Austrian Law.

A. At that time the Austrian Law as far as I know was not
valid any more.

THE PRESIDENT: It is too fast.

Q. (continuing). In other words, you never made a report of
the intended crime either as a private person or as an
official?

A. I should have had to make a great many reports of about
100,000 intended murders of which I knew and could not help
but know. You can read about them in the records - and about
shootings and the like - of which I necessarily had
knowledge, whether I wanted to or not, because,
unfortunately, I was in the midst of it.

Q. This is not a matter of shootings which had taken place
and could no longer be prevented, but rather a matter of
intended murders at a time when it could have, perhaps, been
prevented.

A. I can only answer: why did the person who received this
order first hand not do the same thing? Why didn't he report
to Hitler for instance?

Q. You, as a General of the German Wehrmacht, should have
asked Hitler

A. I am sorry, you overestimate my rank; I had only been a
General in the

                                                  [Page 321]

German Wehrmacht since the first of January, 1945, i.e.,
only for four months. At that time I was Lt.-Colonel, of the
High Command and later Colonel of the General Staff, not in
the General Staff.

Q. But, in 1938, right after Hitler's attack on Austria, you
had immediately made a request to be taken into the German
Wehrmacht by Hitler.

A. I did not make a request, I didn't have to do this.
Wherever I was in the service, 1 was known for my
efficiency. I was not a stranger. With the knowledge of the
Austrian Government and also, in a restricted sense, with
the knowledge of the German authorities (i.e., of certain
persons) I was working for the Austrian Government in a
matter which exclusively concerned things outside the scope
of Austrian internal policy. I co-operated with the
Wehrmacht and the Italian and I Hungarian Governments at the
wish of the Austrian Government and the competent
authorities. There were matters of politics which were not
my domain.

Q. But, I believe, witness, your memory deceives you,
because immediately after Hitler's attack on Austria, you
called on the General Staff in Berlin and there - what you
deny - tried to get a commission in the German Wehrmacht.
You had also made out a questionnaire in which you declared
your complete allegiance to the Greater German Reich, to
Adolf Hitler; and shortly afterwards you took the oath of
allegiance to Adolf Hitler.

A. Yes, of course I did it, just as everybody else who was
in the position of being transferred from one office and
capacity to another.

Q. Previously you said you did not try to get this
appointment but I have been informed to the contrary; that
you, in the company of two or three other officers, were the
first to go to Berlin with the sole purpose of asking the
Chief of the German General Staff - Beck - to take you into
the German Army.

A. I am very glad that you are talking about this,
especially so that I may fully clarify my position. It was
necessary for me to make an application for my new position
in the German Wehrmacht. I was known because of my military
activities, just as any military attach‚ is known in the
country where he is serving.

Moreover, I can easily explain why I rose in office so fast.
I have said that in my activities and in this co-operation,
which was not determined by me, but by my superior Austrian
Officer in the Austrian Intelligence Service with other
States, was at that time directed against the neighbouring
country of Czechoslovakia - Czechoslovakia was the country
that was next after Austria. Therefore, it was natural that
my later Chief, Canaris, who knew me from my former
position, should be very much interested in my coming up
into his department. He put in a request for me and, beyond
that, so did Beck, whom I was visiting. Other people also
know this: and I have now told everything that General Beck
told me at that time.

Q. Then it is true, you did go to Berlin and try to be
transferred into the German Wehrmacht, which you at first
denied?

A. No, that is not true, I did not try to do this. Others
made the request. I can even say that I did not go there - I
flew there. Canaris, who knew me, not only in my military
capacity, but also in regard to my personal attitude (just
as Maroga had known me and just as General Col. Beck, who
was informed about me by Canaris), requested me. I did not
request a position, but others requested me for reasons
which only later became clear to me, because they knew my
personal attitude, just as my Austrian comrades - they were
necessarily few-knew about this and about me. That's the way
it was.

DR. SAUTER: I have no other questions to ask this witness.

THE PRESIDENT: Before the cross-examination I wish to
announce that there will be no public session of the
Tribunal this afternoon.

DR. STAHMER: I am counsel for the defendant Goering, and I
would like to address a few questions to the witness.

                                                  [Page 322]

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY DR. STAHMER (counsel for the defendant
Goering)

Q. Witness, if I understood you correctly, you said
yesterday that, according to the inner basic conviction of
General Canaris, the war on Poland, which was not
successful, was the end of Germany and our misfortune. This
misfortune, however, would become greater by a triumph of
the system which it was the purpose of General Canaris to
prevent. Did I understand you correctly?

A. With one exception, you did not understand me. He did not
fail to succeed in preventing it; the attack was not
preventable, out Canaris had no way of knowing this.

Q. Is it known to you that Admiral Canaris, within the first
years of the war, had very active sabotage organisations
behind the front, and that he personally was very busy with
these organisations?

A. This is naturally known to me, and I have fully informed
the American departments who have been interested in this,
on this subject.

Q. But how is that possible? This would not be in conformity
with his inner political beliefs.

A. This is explained by the fact that in the circle in which
he was active he could never say what he really thought, and
thousands of others could not do so either. The essential
thing is not what he said, or what he had to say; but what
he did and how he did it. This I know and others know too.

Q. This is not a question of what he said, but of what he
has actually done. He has not only proposed such measures,
but has also applied himself to their execution; is this
true?

A. Ostensibly he had, of course, to remain within the limits
of his office, in order to keep his position. That was the
important thing, that he had to remain in this position, to
avoid in 1939 the thing that actually happened in 1944. He
then tried to get things in hand, and I wish to compare
Canaris with Himmler; there is no need to mention what the
goal was, if he took part .

Q. You mentioned the name of Himmler; in this connection I
would like to ask the following questions.

Is it known to you that Admiral Canaris, during the first
years of the war, kept up close connections with the S.S.
and that the necessity of close co-operation with the SS.
was emphasised by him repeatedly, so that the defendant
Goering had to advise him to be more independent in his
military functions?

THE PRESIDENT: You are going too quickly and I do not think
you are observing what I said just now, that it will help
the Tribunal if you will ask one question at a time.

DR. STAHMER: I would like to summarise my question this way;
did the witness know that Admiral Canaris, during the first
years of the war, had good connections with the SS. and
recognised the necessity of close co-operation with the
formation, a fact which he always emphasised?

THE WITNESS: Yes, this is known to me. I also know why.

Q. (continuing): And why?

A. Because in this position he was able to see and to get
information of everything that happened to these people, and
so could intervene if and whenever feasible.

Q. Was it the duty of your organisation and of the
department of Canaris respectively, to pass on enemy
intelligence in good time to Higher Headquarters?

A. I do not understand what the office of Canaris has to do
with this.

Q. Your section, of the office of Canaris?

A. Why, of course, the Department I -

Q. Now, according to my information your office did not pass
on the information of the Anglo-American landing in North
Africa. Is that true?

A. I do not know, I do not wish to be held responsible for
the Department. This is a question which could easily be
answered by Oberst Pieckenbrock, but not by myself.

                                                  [Page 323]

Q. As to the case Rowehls, you said yesterday that a colonel
of the Air Force, Rowehls, was leading a special troop which
had the job of making reconnaissance flights over Poland,
England and the South East, prior to the Polish campaign,
and you also said that Colonel Rowehls went to see Admiral
Canaris and to report on the result of these flights, and
presented his photographic maps. Is that true?

A. Yes. How should I have known about it otherwise? I did
not invent it.

Q. I didn't say that.

How did Colonel Rowehls come to tell Admiral Canaris about
this?

A. I believe I mentioned yesterday, that this was a function
of the department Ausland-Abwehr, Obere Abteilung.

Q. Have you yourself seen the pictures that were made over
England?

A. Yes, I have seen them.

Q. When and where have these pictures been shown to you?

A. In the office of Canaris, but they were none of my
business. I happened to be present at the time. I was
interested to see what was going on.

Q. What did these pictures show?

A. I do not remember the details now. They were pictures
taken from airplanes.

Q. The pictures were not shown to you?

A. No, the pictures were not shown to me, I was merely an
interested bystander on this occasion, just as I previously
told you.

Q. Did Rowehls give any written reports about these test
flights to the Amt?

A. I do not know.

Q. You do not know?

You also said that Rowehls' squadron made flights from
Budapest later?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you know that of your own experience or information?

A. I know it through personal investigation; the time is
fixed through the diary of the section, and because at that
time I was in Budapest, and because at that time I was asked
to attend a Citation Ceremony at the Palace.

Q. And why were these flights executed from Budapest?

A. I do not know; I said that yesterday. A gentleman of the
Air Force would have to answer that.

DR. DIX (counsel for defendant Schacht): You probably do not
know me. I am Dr. Dix, the attorney for the defendant
Schacht.

CROSS-EXAMINATION BY DR. DIX

Q. Witness, do you know Captain Struenck from the Abwehr?

A. I would like you to tell me something about the name. The
name alone does not mean anything to me. Give me a few
points that will refresh my memory.

Q. He is a lawyer who was a reserve officer with the Abwehr,
I do not know in which department, but I should say it was
in the department of Pieckenbrock. However, if you do not
know him I will not question you any further.

A. If he was with Pieckenbrock I do not know him. I knew a
few. Is Struenck still alive?

DR. DIX: No, he is no longer living.

THE WITNESS LAHOUSEN: Was he executed?


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.