The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression
Individual Responsibility Of Defendants
>Rudolf Hess
(Part 3 of 4)

[Page 473]

It is noteworthy that the DAI was closely affiliated with the German-American Bund, a subversive Nazi organization in the United States. The DAI's official periodical, "Germandom Abroad" (Deutschtum im Ausland), was edited during the war Walter Kappe, former press chief of the Bund (3258-PS). Walter Kappe and Fritz Gissibl, another former leader in the Bund, established on the premises of the DAI in Stuttgart an organization called "Comradeship USA." The purpose of this "Comradeship USA." was to maintain during the war an organization for all Nazi Party members who had been active in the Bund in the United States (3258-PS). Even before the outbreak of the war, in the spring of 1939, Walter Kappe had undertaken to collect a complete archive of Nazi activities in the U. S. on behalf of the DAI and the Nazi Party (3258- PS).

The success of this world-wide fifth column directed by Hess now a matter of historical record. Hess himself guided the subversive foreign groups which he had created until the day when the conspirators were ready to annex the countries which they had undermined.

Thus, the annexation of Austria was principally due to the

[Page 474]

efforts of the Nazi Party's work within that country under the orders of Hess. As early as 1934 Hess had appointed Reinthaler leader of the Nazi peasants in Austria, and thus placed him in a position to take over the leadership of the Nazi Fifth Column in Austria (812-PS). Hess took a major part in the negotiations carried on by Seyss-Inquart and other members of the conspiracy in preparation of the Anschluss (3254-PS; 3425-PS). When on 12 March 1938 Germany invaded Austria, Hess, accompanied by Himmler, was the first member of the conspiracy to arrive in Vienna at noon on the same day (L-292). The next day Hess signed the decree by which the conspirators destroyed the independence of Austria (2307-PS; 3075-PS).

Once the conspirators had achieved their aim, Hess did not hesitate to admit publicly that he had approved of the steps which led to the final subjection of Austria. On 24 July 1938 he addressed a meeting held on the fourth anniversary of the assassination of Austrian Chancellor Dollfuss by members of the 89th SS Regiment. He devoted the larger part of his speech to a justification of that assassination (L- 273).

When the conspirators turned their attention to their next victim, Czechoslovakia, Hess was again in the forefront directing the German fifth-column in the Sudetenland. In his speech at the annual meeting of the Foreign Organization of the NSDAP on 28 August 1938, Hess declared that Nazi Germany was giving full backing to the demands of the Sudeten German agitators. What such support meant in fact became very clear when Hess pointed to the success of the Nazi policy in Austria (3258-PS). All through the summer of 1938 Hess was engaged in consultations with Karl H. Frank and Konrad Henlein, leaders of the Nazi Sudeten German Party (3061-PS).

A few months later Hess could mark up another success for his fifth-column. When the Munich Agreement forced Czechoslovakia to surrender the Sudeten territory to Germany, Hess went to Reichenberg, the capital of that district, as Hitler's representative in order to accept the official incorporation of the Sudeten German Party into the Nazi Party on 5 November 1938. In his address on that occasion he emphasized repeatedly that the Nazi conspirators had been ready to go to war for the possession of the Sudetenland (3204-PS).

Hess also put his signature to the Act of 14 April 1939 setting up the government of the Sudetenland as an integral part of the Reich (3076-PS).

Later during the same year, after the conspirators had loosed their first aggressive war, Hess signed the laws incorporating first

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Danzig and then a large portion of Poland into the Reich (3077-PS; see also Decree 8 October 1939 (RGBl 1939, Part I, p. 2042); Decree of 12 October 1939, Part I, p.-2077).

When in July 1941 the Nazi conspirators occupied Greece, the members of the local Nazi Party were ready to take over as an auxiliary Army service (3258-PS).

Thus, wherever the conspirators sent their invading armies Hess' fifth-column had prepared the soil.

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