The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression
Volume I Chapter IX
Aggression Against the U.S.S.R.
(Part 12 of 16)

These two directives are sufficiently typical of the lot to show the extent of the planning and preparation for this phase of the aggression as well as the political purpose it was hoped would be achieved thereby. They are reinforced by a later report of Rosenberg's. On 28 June 1941, less than a week after the invasion, Rosenberg himself prepared a full report of his activities since his appointment on the 20th of April (1039-PS). This report makes disclosures concerning the number of conspirators who worked with and assisted Rosenberg in the planning and preparation for this phase of the aggression and the extent to which practically all the ministries and offices of both the State and the Party were involved in this operation. The report was found in Rosenberg's files and, although it is rather long, it is of sufficient importance in implicating persons, groups and organizations to justify quotation in full:

"Report on the Preparatory Work in Eastern European Questions

"Immediately after the notification of individual Supreme Reich offices regarding the Fuehrer's decree of 20.4.1941 a conference with the Chief of the OKW [Armed Forces High Command] took place. After presentation of the various political aims in the proposed Reichskommissariats and presentation of personal requirements for the East, the Chief of the OKW explained that a deferment (OK-stelung) would be too complicated in this case and that this matter could be carried out best by direct cancellation (Abkommandierung) by command of the Chief of the OKW. Generalfeldmarschall Keitel then issued an appropriate command which established the basis for the coming requirements. He named as deputy and liaison officer General Jodl and Maj. Gen. Warlimont. The negotiations which then commenced relative in all questions of the Eastern Territory were carried on by the gentlemen of the OKW in collaoration with officials of my office.

"A conference took place with Admiral Canaris to the effect that under the given confidential circumstances my office

[Page 823]

could in no way deal with any representatives of people of the East-European area. I asked him to do this insofar as the Military intelligence required it, and then to name persons to me who could count as political personalities over and above the military intelligence in order to arrange for their eventual commitment later. Admiral Canaris said that naturally also my wish not to recognize any political groups among the emigrants would be considered by him and that he was planning to proceed in accordance with my indications.

"Later on I informed Generalfeldmarschall von Brauchitsch and Grossadmiral Raeder about the historical and political conceptions of the Eastern problem. In further conferences we agreed to appoint a representative of my office to the Supreme Commander of the Army, respectively to the chief quartermaster and to the army groups for questions relative to political configuration and requests of the OKW. In the meantime this has been done.

"Already at the outset there was a discussion with Minister of Economy (Reichswirtschaftsminister) Funk, who appointed as his permanent deputy Ministerialdirektor Dr. Schlotterer. Almost daily conferences were then held with Dr. Schlotterer with reference to the war economic intentions of the Economic Operational Staff (Wirtshaftsfuehrungsstab) East. In this connection I had conferences with General Thomas, State Secretary (Staatssekretaer) Koerner, State Secretary Backe, Ministerial Director Riecke, General Schubert and others. Far-reaching agreement was reached in the eastern questions as regards direct technical work now and in the future. A few problems regarding the relationship of the proposed Reich ministry toward the four-year plan are still open and will be subject, after submission, to a decision of the Fuehrer. In principle I declared that I am in no way intended to found an economic department in my office, economics would rather be handled substantially and practically by the Reichsmarschall and the persons appointed by him, however the two responsible department heads, namely Ministerial Director Dr. Schlotterer for industrial economics and Ministerial Director Riecke for food economies, would be placed in my office as permanent liaison men, to coordinate here political aims with the economic necessities, in a department which would have to unite yet other persons for such coordinating work, depending on later and for work (political leadership of

[Page 824]

labor unions, construction etc.). After notification of the Reich foreign minister, the' latter appointed Geheimrat Grosskopf as permanent liaison man to my office. For the requested representation in the political department of my office (headed by Reichsamtsleiter Dr. Leibbrandt) the foreign ministry released General Counsel Dr. Braeutigam, who is known to me for many years, speaks Russian, and worked for years in Russia. Negotiations which if necessary will be placed before the Fuehrer are under way with the foreign office regarding its wishe's for the assignment of its representatives to the future Reich commissioners.

"The propaganda ministry appointed State Secretary Gutterer as permanent liaison man, and a complete agreement was reached to the effect that the decisions on all political and other essays, speeches, proclamations, etc. would be made in my office; a great number of substantial works for propaganda would be delivered and the papers prepared by the propaganda ministry would be modified here if necessary. The whole practical employment of propaganda will undisputedly be subject to the Reich ministry of public enlightenment and propaganda. For the sake of closer cooperation the propaganda ministry assigns yet another person directly to my department 'Enlightenment and Press' .(Aufklaerung und Presse) and in addition appoints a permanent press liaison man. All these activities have been going on for some time, and without attracting attention to my office in any way, this agreement on contents and terminology takes place continually every day.

"Thorough discussions took place with Reichsminister Ohnesorge concerning future transmission of communication and setting up of all technical necessities in future occupied territories; with Reichsminister Seldte on the supply of labor forces, with Reichsminister Frick (State Secretary Stuckart) in detailed form on the assignment of numerous necessary officials for the commissariats. According to the present estimate there will be four Reichs Kommissariats, as approved by the Fuehrer. I shall propose to the Fuehrer for political and other reasons to set up a suitable number of General Commissariats (24) Main Commissariats (about 80) and Regional (Gebiet) Commissariats (over 900). A General Commissariat would correspond to a former Generalgovernment, a Main Commissariat to a Maingovernment. A Regional Commissariat contains 3 or 4 Districts (Kreise). In view of the huge spaces that is the

[Page 825]

minimum number which appears necessary for a future civil government and/or administration. A portion of the officials has already been requested on the basis of the above named command of the Chief of the OKW.

"In the same manner conferences have taken place with the Reich Physicians Leader (Reichsaerztefuehrer) Dr. Conti, the Inspector of the Army Veterinary Service, and all specialists belonging thereto. The difficulties of medical and veterinary supply were thoroughly discussed and the measures were previewed, in order to insure well-prepared employment of the forces mentioned after the end of the operations. A conference with Reichsminister Dr. Todt resulted in the assignment first of all of 4 higher leaders of the Construction Service, whereupon Dr. Todt proposed to unite administratively under one leadership the whole Construction Service.

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