The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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My Lord, I pass to the next document, C-178, that has
already been put in as Exhibit USA 544. It is an internal
memorandum of the Naval War Staff, written by the division
dealing with International Law to another division, and the
subject is the order with regard to the shooting of
Commandos of 18th October, 1942, with which the Tribunal, I
think, are familiar.

The point of the document is that some doubt appeared to
have arisen in some quarters with regard to the
understanding of the order, and in the last sentence of the
memorandum it is suggested, "As far as the Navy is
concerned, it remains to be seen whether or not this case
should be used to make sure, after a conference with the
Commander-in-Chief of the Navy, that all departments
concerned have an entirely clear conception regarding the
treatment of members of Commando units."

My Lord, whether that conference took place or not I do not
know. The document is dated some 11 days after this
defendant had taken over from the defendant Raeder.

But the next document in the book, D-649, which I put in as
Exhibit GB 208, is an instance of the Navy in July of that
year, July, 1943, handing over to the S.D. for shooting,
Norwegian and British naval personnel, whom the Navy decided
came under the terms of the order. My Lord, it is an
affidavit by a British barrister-at-law who served as judge
advocate at the trial of the members of the S.D. who
executed the order.

Paragraph I sets out that the deponent was judge advocate at
the trial of 10 members of the S.D. by a military court held
at the Law Courts, Oslo, Norway, which sat on Thursday, 29th
November, 1945, and concluded its sitting on Tuesday, 4th
December, 1945.

My Lord, the next paragraph sets out who convened the court,
and the names of the prosecuting and defending counsel, and
the third paragraph states:

  "The accused were charged with committing a war crime, in
  that they at Ulven, Norway, in or about the month of
  July, 1943, in violation of the laws and usages of war,
  were concerned in the killing" - and then there follows
  the names of six personnel of the Norwegian Navy,
  including one officer, and one leading telegraphist of
  the Royal Navy, prisoners of war.

I might read from paragraph 4:

  "There was evidence before the Court, which was not
  challenged by the defence, that Motor Torpedo Boat No.
  345 set out from Lerwick in the Shetlands on a naval
  operation for the purpose of making torpedo attacks on
  German shipping off the Norwegian coast, and for the
  purpose of laying


                                                  [Page 259]
  
  mines in the same area. The persons mentioned in the
  charge were all the crew of the torpedo boat."
  
  Paragraph 5: "The defence did not challenge that each
  member of the crew was wearing uniform at the time of
  capture, and there was abundant evidence from many
  persons, several of whom were German, that they were
  wearing uniform at all times after their capture."
  
  Paragraph 6: "On 27th July, 1943, the torpedo boat
  reached the island of Aspo off the Norwegian coast, north
  of Bergen. On the following day the whole of the crew
  were captured and were taken on board a German naval
  vessel which was under the command of Admiral von
  Schrader, the Admiral of the West coast. The crew were
  taken to Bergenhus where they had arrived by 11 p.m. on
  28th July. The crew were there interrogated by Lieut. H.
  P. W. Fanger, a Naval Lieutenant of the Reserve, on the
  orders of Korvettenkdaitan Egon Drascher, both of the
  German Naval Intelligence Service. This interrogation was
  carried out upon the orders of the staff of the Admiral
  of the West coast. Lieut. Fanger reported to the Officer
  in Charge of the Intelligence Branch at Bergen that in
  his opinion all the members of the crew were entitled to
  be treated as prisoners of war, and that officer in turn
  reported both orally and in writing to the Sea Commander,
  Bergen, and in writing to the Admiral of the West coast.
  
  Paragraph 7: The interrogation by the Naval Intelligence
  Branch was concluded in the early hours of 29th July, and
  almost immediately all the members of the crew were
  handed over on the immediate orders of the Sea Commander,
  Bergen, to Obersturmbannfuehrer of the S.D., Hans Wilhelm
  Blomberg, who was at that time Kommandeur of the
  Sicherheitspolizei at Bergen. This followed a meeting
  between Blomberg and Admiral von Schrader, at which a
  copy of the Fuehrer order of the 18th October, 1942, was
  shown to Blomberg. This order dealt with the classes of
  persons who were to be excluded from the protection of
  the Geneva Convention and were not to be treated as
  prisoners of war, but when captured were to be handed
  over to the S.D. Admiral von Schrader told Blomberg that
  the crew of this torpedo boat were to be handed over, in
  accordance with the Fuehrer order, to the S.D.
  
  Paragraph 9: The S.D. then conducted their own
  interrogation -

THE PRESIDENT: You can summarise the rest, cannot you?

COLONEL PHILLIMORE: If your Lordship pleases.

My Lord, paragraph 9 described the interrogation by
officials of the S.D., and that these officials took the
same view as the Naval Intelligence officers, that the crew
were entitled to be treated as prisoners of war; that
despite this they were taken out and shot by an execution
squad composed of members of the S.D.

Then there is a description of the disposal of the bodies.

My Lord, the last paragraph is perhaps important in
connection with the case against the defendant Keitel.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, read it.

COLONEL PHILLIMORE:

  "(11) It appeared from the evidence that in March or
  April, 1945, an order from the Fuehrer Headquarters,
  signed by Keitel, was transmitted to the German
  authorities in Norway. The substance of the order was
  that members of the crews of Commando raids who fell into
  German captivity were from that date to be treated as
  ordinary prisoners of war. This order referred
  specifically to the Fuehrer order referred to above."

The members of the Tribunal will of course have noted the
date; it was time to put their affairs in order.

My Lord, the next document, C-158, I put in as Exhibit GB
209. It consists of two extracts from minutes of conference,
on the 19th and 20tb February,

                                                  [Page 260]


1945, conferences between the defendant Donitz and Hitler.
If I might read the first and last sentence of the first
extract:

  "The Fuehrer is considering whether or not Germany should
  renounce the Geneva Convention."

That is, of course, the 1929 prisoners of war convention.
And the last sentence:

  "The Fuehrer orders the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy to
  consider the pros and cons of this step and to state his
  opinion as soon as possible."

Then the second extract; the defendant Donitz states his
opinion in the presence of the defendant Jodl and the
representative of the defendant Ribbentrop. It is the last
two sentences on which I rely:

  "On the contrary, the disadvantages" - that is, the
  disadvantages of renouncing the convention - "outweigh
  the advantages. Even from a general standpoint it appears
  to the Commander-in-Chief that this measure would bring
  no advantage. It would be better to carry out the
  measures considered necessary without warning, and at all
  costs to save face with the outer world."

My Lord, it is no small matter, that document, when one
reflects that it was to that convention that we owe the fact
that upwards of 165,000 British and 65,000 to 70,000
American prisoners of war were duly recovered at the end of
the war. And to advocate breaching that convention,
preferably without saying so, is not a matter to be treated
lightly.

My Lord, the next document, C-171, I put in as Exhibit GB
210. It is another extract from the minutes of a meeting
between the defendant Donitz and Hitler, the 1st July, 1944.
The extract is signed by the defendant:
  
  "Regarding the General Strike in Copenhagen, the Fuehrer
  says that the only weapon to deal with terror is terror.
  Court-martial proceedings create martyrs. History shows
  that the names of such men are on everybody's lips,
  whereas there is silence with regard to the many
  thousands who have lost their lives in similar
  circumstances without court-martial proceedings."

My Lord, the next document, C-195, I put in as Exhibit GB
211. It is a memorandum signed by the defendant, dated late
in 1944. There is no specific date on the document, but it
is late in 1944, in December, I think, of 1944. The
distribution on the third page includes Hitler, Keitel,
Jodl, Speer and the Supreme Command of the Air Force.

My Lord, if I might read the second paragraph. He is dealing
with the review of German shipping losses.

  "Furthermore, I propose reinforcing the shipyard working
  parties by prisoners from the concentration camps, and as
  a special measure for relieving the present shortage of
  coppersmiths, especially in U-boat construction, I
  propose to divert coppersmiths from the construction of
  locomotives to ship-building."

Then he goes on to deal with sabotage, and the last two
paragraphs on that page are:

  "Since, elsewhere, measures for exacting atonement taken
  against whole working parties amongst whom sabotage
  occurred, have proved successful, and, for example, the
  shipyard sabotage in France was completely suppressed,
  possibly similar measures for the Scandinavian countries
  will come under consideration."

THE PRESIDENT: Do you need to read any more than that?

COLONEL PHILLIMORE: My Lord, no. The last sentence of the
document in the next page is:

"Item 2 of the summing-up reads: '12,000 concentration camp
prisoners will be employed in the shipyards as additional
labour (security service agrees to this).'" That is the S.D.

                                                  [Page 261]

My Lord, this man was one of the rulers of Germany, and, in
my submission, that document alone is sufficient to condemn
him. It was not for nothing that at these meetings Himmler
and his Lieutenants, Fegelein and Kaltenbrunner, were
present.

My Lord, they were not there to discuss U-boats or the use
of battleships. It is clear, in my submission, from this
document that this defendant knew all about concentration
camps and concentration camp labour, and as one of the
rulers of Germany he must bear his full share of that
responsibility.

My Lord, I pass to the last document, D-650, which I put in
as Exhibit GB 212.

My Lord, this contains the orders issued by the defendant in
April. The document, in my submission, shows the defendant's
fanatical adherence to the Nazi creed, and his preparedness,
even at that stage, to continue a hopeless war at the
expense of human life and with the certainty of increased
destruction and misery to the men, women and children of
this country. I read the last paragraph on the second page:

  "I therefore demand of the commanding officers of the
  Navy: That they clearly and unambiguously follow the path
  of military duty, whatever may happen. I demand of them
  that they stamp out ruthlessly all signs and tendencies
  among the men which endanger the following of this path."

Then he refers to an order:

  "I demand from Senior Commanders that they should take
  just as ruthless action against any commander who does
  not do his military duty. If a commander does not think
  he has the moral strength to hold his position as a
  leader in this sense, he must report this immediately. He
  will then be used as a soldier in this fateful struggle,
  in some position in which he is not burdened with any
  tasks as a leader."

And then the last paragraph on that page, from the secret
Baltic Order of the Day of 19th April, he gives an example
of the type of under-officer who should be promoted:

  "An example: In a prison camp of the auxiliary cruiser
  Cormorau, in Australia, a petty officer acting as camp
  senior officer, had all Communists, who made themselves
  noticeable among the inmates of the camp systematically
  done away with, in such a way that the guards did not
  notice it. This petty officer is sure of my full
  recognition for his decision and his execution. After his
  return, I shall certainly promote him, as he has shown
  that he is fitted to be a leader."

My Lord, of course the point is not whether the facts were
true or not, but the type of order that he was issuing. My
Lord, if I might just sum up, the defendant was no plain
sailor, playing the part of a service officer, loyally
obedient to the orders of the Government of the day; he was
an extreme Nazi who did his utmost to indoctrinate the Navy
and the German people with the Nazi creed. It is no
coincidence that it was he who was chosen to succeed Hitler;
not Goering, not Ribbentrop, not Goebbels, not Himmler. He
played a big part in fashioning the U-boat, fleet, one of
the most deadly weapons of aggressive war. He helped to plan
and execute aggressive war, and we cannot doubt that he knew
well that these wars were in deliberate violation of
treaties. He was ready to stoop to any ruse where he thought
he would not be found out, such as breaches of the Geneva
Convention or of neutrality, where they might hope to
maintain that sinking was due to a mine. He was ready to
order, and did order, the murder of helpless survivors of
sunken ships, an action only paralleled, by that of his
Japanese ally.

My Lord, there can be few countries where widows or parents
do not mourn for men of the merchant navies whose death was
due to the callous brutality with which, at the orders of
this man, the German U-boats did their work.

My Lord, my learned friend, Major Elwyn Jones, will now deal
with the defendant Raeder.

                                                  [Page 262]

MAJOR ELWYN JONES: May it please the Tribunal, it is my duty
to present to the Tribunal the evidence against the creator
of the Nazi Navy, the defendant Raeder. The allegations
against him are set out in Appendix A of the Indictment at
Pages 33 and 34, and the Tribunal will see that the
defendant Raeder is charged with promoting and participating
in the planning of the Nazi wars of aggression; with
executing those plans; and with authorising, directing and
participating in Nazi War Crimes, particularly war crimes
arising out of sea warfare.

At the outset the Tribunal may find it convenient to look at
Document 2888-PS, which is already before the Tribunal as
Exhibit USA 13, which the Tribunal will find at Page 96 of
the document book. That is a document which sets out the
offices and positions held by the defendant Raeder. The
Tribunal will see that he was born in 1876 and joined the
German Navy in 1896. By 1915 he had become commander of the
Cruiser Koln. In 1928 he became an admiral, chief of naval
command, and head of the German Navy. In 1935 he became
Commander-in-Chief of the Navy. In 1936, on Hitler's 47th
birthday, he became General Admiral, a creation of Hitler's.
In 1937 he received the high Nazi honour of golden badge of
honour of the Nazi Party. In 1938 he became a member of the
secret cabinet council. And in 1939 he reached the empyrean
of Grand Admiral, a rank created by Hitler, who presented
Raeder with a marshal's baton. In 1943 he became Admiral
Inspector of the German Navy, which, as the Tribunal will
shortly see, was a kind of retirement into oblivion, because
from January, 1943 on, as the Tribunal has heard, Donitz was
the effective commander of the German Navy.

In these eventful years of Raeder's command of the German
Navy from 1928 to 1943 he played a vital role. I would like,
in the first instance, to draw the Tribunal's attention to
Raeder's part in building up the German Navy as an
instrument of war to implement the Nazis' general plan of
aggression.

The Tribunal is by now familiar with the steps by which the
small navy permitted to Germany under the Treaty of
Versailles was enormously expanded under the guidance of
Raeder. I will do no more than to remind the Tribunal of
some of the milestones upon Raeder's road to Nazi mastery of
the seas, which mercifully he was unable to attain.

With regard to the story of Germany's secret rearmament in
violation of the Treaty of Versailles, I would refer the
Court to the Document C-156, which is already before the
Court as Exhibit USA 41, and which the Tribunal will find at
Page 26 of the document book. That document, as the Tribunal
will remember, was "A history of the fight of the German
Navy against Versailles, 1919 to 1935," which was published
secretly by the German Admiralty in 1937. The Tribunal will
remember that that history shows that before the Nazis came
to power the German Admiralty was deceiving not only the
governments of other countries, but its own legislature and,
at one stage, its own government. Its secret measures of
rearmament ranged from experimental U-boat and E-boat
building to the creation of secret intelligence and finance
organisations. I only propose to trouble the Tribunal with a
reference to the last paragraph at Page 33 of the document
book, which refers to the role of Raeder in this
development. It is an extract from Page 75 of this Document
C- 156, and it reads:

  "The commander-in-chief of the Navy, Admiral Raeder, had
  received hereby a far-reaching independence in the
  building and development of the Navy. This was only
  hampered insofar as the previous concealment of
  rearmament had to be continued in consideration of the
  Versailles Treaty."


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