The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)
Nuremberg, war crimes, crimes against humanity

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
December 3 to December 14, 1945

Nineteenth Day: Thursday, 13th December, 1945
(Part 3 of 10)

[MR. DODD continues]

[Page 356]

We say also that the defendant Speer is guilty of advocating terror and brutality as a means of maximising production by slave labourers. And again I refer to this Document R-124. At Page 42 there is a discussion concerning the supply and exploitation of labour. That excerpt has been read to the Tribunal before, and I simply refer to it in passing. It is the excerpt wherein Speer said it would be a good thing; the effect of it was that nothing could be said against the S.S. and the police taking a hand and making these men work and produce more.

We say he is also guilty of compelling allied nationals and prisoners of war to engage in the production of armaments and munitions and in direct military operations against their own country.

We say that, as Chief of the "Organisation Todt," he is accountable for its policies, which were in direct conflict with the laws of war, for the "Organisation Todt," in violation of the laws of war, impressed allied nationals into its service.

Document L-191, Exhibit USA 231, is an International Labour Office study of the exploitation of foreign labour by Germany. We have only one copy of this document, being this International Labour Office study, printed at Montreal, Canada, in 1945. We ask that the Tribunal take judicial notice of it as an official publication of the International Labour Office.

I might say to the Tribunal, with some apology, that this arrived at a time when we were not able even to have the excerpt mimeographed and printed, to place in your document book, so this is the one document which is missing from the document book which is in your hands. However, I should like to quote from Page 73, Paragraph 2, of this study by the International Labour Office. It is not long; it is very brief. I am quoting directly. It says:-

[Page 357]

"The methods used for the recruitment of foreign workers who were destined for employment in the Organisation did not greatly differ from the methods used for the recruitment of foreigners for deportation to Germany."
The Organisation, by the way, is the "Organisation Todt."
"The main difference was that, since the principal activities of the Organisation lay outside the frontiers of Germany, foreigners were not transported to Germany but had either to work in their own country or in some other occupied territory.

In the recruitment drives for foreign workers for the Organisation methods of compulsion as well as methods of persuasion were used, the latter usually with very little result."

Moreover, conscripted allied nationals were compelled by this same Organisation to actually engage in operations of war against their country.

Document 407-PS, VIII, discloses that the foreign workers who were impressed into the "Organisation Todt," through the efforts of the defendant Sauckel, did participate in the building of the Atlantic Wall fortifications.

As Chief of German War Production this defendant Speer sponsored and approved the use of these prisoners of war in the production of armaments and munitions. This has been made plain by the evidence already discussed.

To sum it up briefly, we say that it shows first that, after Speer assumed the responsibility for the armament production, his concern, in his discussions with his co- conspirators, was to secure a larger allocation of prisoners of war for his armament factories. That has been shown by the quotations from the excerpts of Document R-124, the minutes of the meeting of the Central Planning Board; and in this same meeting the Tribunal will recall that Speer complained because only 30 per cent. of the Russian prisoners of war were engaged in the armaments industry.

We have referred to a speech of Speer, Document 1435-PS - we quoted from it - in which he said that 10,000 prisoners of war were put at the disposal of the armaments industry upon his orders.

And, finally, Speer advocated the returning of escaped prisoners of war to factories as convicts. That is shown again by Document R-124, Page 13, Paragraph 5 of the English text, where Speer says that he has come to an arrangement -

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Dodd, do not you think that we really have got this sufficiently now?

MR. DODD: Yes, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: We have Speer's own admission and any number of documents which prove the way in which these prisoners of war and other labourers were brought into Germany.

MR. DODD: Well I just wanted to refer briefly to that passage in that Document R-124 as showing that this defendant advocated having escaped prisoners of war returned to the munitions factories. I do not want to enlarge on this responsibility of the defendant Speer. I was anxious - or perhaps I should say we are all over-anxious - to have the documents in the record and before the Tribunal.

THE PRESIDENT: Which is the passage you want to refer to on Page 13?

MR. DODD: I just referred in passing to the statement which begins

[Page 358]

with the words "We have come to an arrangement with the Reichsfuehrer S.S." And in the next to the last sentence says: "The men should be put into the factories as convicts."

Finally, with reference to this defendant, I should like to say to the Tribunal that he visited the concentration camp at Mauthausen and he also visited factories such as those conducted by the Krupp industries, where concentration camp labour was exploited under degrading conditions. Despite this first-hand knowledge of these conditions in Mauthausen and places where these forced labourers were at work in factories, he continued to direct the use of this type of labour in factories under his own jurisdiction.

THE PRESIDENT: How do you intend to prove it as to these concentration camps?

MR. DODD: I was going to refer the Tribunal to Page 9 of the interrogation of 18th October, 1945, and I refer to Page 11, Paragraph 5 of the German text and Page 9, beginning with Paragraph 9, of the English text:-

"Q. But, in general, the use of concentration camp labour was known to you and approved by you as a source of labour?

A. Yes.

Q. And you knew also, I take it, that among the inmates of the concentration camps there were both Germans and foreigners?

A. I did not think about it at that time.

Q. As a matter of fact, you visited the Austrian concentration camp personally, did you not?

A. I did not - well, I was in Mauthausen once, but at that time I was not told just to what categories the inmates of the concentration camps belonged.

Q. But in general everybody knew, did they not, that foreigners who were taken away by the Gestapo or arrested by the Gestapo, as well as Germans, found their way into the concentration camps?

A. Of course, yes. I did not mean to imply anything like that."

And on Page 15 of this same interrogation, beginning with the 13th paragraph of the English text, and Page 20 in the German text, we find these questions:
"Q. Did you ever discuss, by the way, the requirements of Krupp for foreign labour?

A. It is certain that it was reported to me what shortage Krupp had in foreign workers.

Q. Did you ever discuss it with any of the members of the Krupp firm?

A. I cannot say that exactly, but during the time of my activities I visited the Krupp factory more than once and it is certain that this was discussed, that is, the lack of manpower."

Before closing, I should like to take two minutes of the time of the Tribunal to refer to what we consider to be some of the applicable laws of the case for the assistance of the Tribunal in considering these documents which we have offered.

We refer, of course, first of all, to Sections 6 (b) and 6 (c) of the Charter of this Tribunal. We also say that the acts of the conspirators constituted a flagrant violation of Articles 46 and 52 of the Regulations annexed to the Hague Convention No. IV of 1907.

[Page 359]

Article 46 seeks to safeguard the family honour, the rights and the lives of persons in areas under belligerent occupation.

Article 52 provides in part that: "Requisitions in kind and services shall not be demanded from municipalities or inhabitants except for the needs of the army of occupation. They shall be in proportion to the resources of the country".

We say that these conspirators violated this Article because the labour which they conscripted was not used to satisfy the needs of the army of occupation, but, on the contrary, was forcibly removed from the occupied areas and exploited in the interest of the German war effort.

Finally, we say that these conspirators, and particularly the defendants Sauckel and Speer, by virtue of their planning, of their execution, and of their approval of this programme which we have been describing yesterday and today, the enslavement and the misuse of the forced labour of prisoners of war - that for this they bear a special responsibility for their Crimes Against Humanity and their War Crimes.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you finishing, Mr. Dodd?

MR. DODD: Yes, I have finished.

THE PRESIDENT: I should like to ask you why you have not read Document 3057-PS, which is Sauckel's statement.

MR. DODD: Yes. We had intended to offer that document. Counsel for the defendant Sauckel informed me a day or two ago that his client maintained that he had been coerced into making the statement. Because we had not ample time to ascertain the facts of the matter, we preferred to withhold it, rather than to offer it to the Tribunal under any question of doubt.

THE PRESIDENT: He objects to it, and therefore you have not put it in?

MR. DODD: No, we did not offer it while there was any question about it.


MR. DODD: Might I suggest to the Tribunal that a recess be taken at this time? I am sorry to have to say that I am due to be before the Tribunal for some little time - that is, I am sorry for the Tribunal - with the matters on the concentration camps.

THE PRESIDENT: You mean a recess now?

MR. DODD: If your Honour pleases.

THE PRESIDENT: Certainly, yes; ten minutes.

(A recess was taken.)

MR. DODD: May it please the Tribunal, we propose to offer additional evidence at this time concerning the use of Nazi concentration camps against the people of Germany and allied nationals. We propose to examine the purposes and the role of the concentration camp in the larger Nazi scheme of things. We propose to show that the concentration camp was one of the fundamental institutions of the Nazi regime, that it was a pillar of the system of terror by which the Nazis consolidated their power over Germany and imposed their ideology upon the German people, that it was really a primary weapon in the battle against the Jews, against the Christian Church, against Labour, against those who wanted peace, against opposition or non-conformity of any kind. We say it involved the systematic use of terror to achieve the cohesion within Germany which was necessary for the execution of the conspirators' plans for aggression.

[Page 360]

We propose to show that a concentration camp was one of the principal instruments used by the conspirators for the commission on an enormous scale of Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes; that it was the final link in a chain of terror and repression which involved the S.S. and the Gestapo, and which resulted in the apprehension of victims and their confinement, without trial, often without charges, generally with no indication of the length of their detention.

My colleagues will present full evidence concerning the criminal role of the S.S. and Gestapo in this phase of Nazi terrorism, the concentration camp, but at this point, I wish simply to point out that the S.S., through its espionage system, tracked down the victims, that the criminal police and the Gestapo seized them and brought them to the camps, and that the concentration camps were administered by the S.S.

This Tribunal, we feel, is already aware of the sickening evidence of the brutality of the concentration camp from the showing of the moving picture. More than that, individual prosecutions are going on, going forward before other courts, which will record these outrages in detail. Therefore, we do not propose to present a catalogue of individual brutalities, but, rather, to submit evidence showing the fundamental purposes for which the camps were used, the techniques of terror which were employed, the large number of victims and the death and the anguish which they caused.

The evidence relating to concentration camps has been assembled in a document book bearing the letter "S". I might say that the documents in this book have been arranged in the order of presentation, rather than, as we have been doing, numerically. In this book we have put them in as they occur in the presentation. One document in this book, 2309- PS, is cited several times, so we have marked it with a tab with a view to facilitating reference back to it. It will be referred to more than once.

The Nazis realised early that, without the most drastic repression of actual and potential opposition, they could not consolidate their power over the German people. We have seen that, immediately after Hitler became Chancellor, the conspirators promptly destroyed civil liberty by issuing the Presidential Emergency Decree of 28th February, 1933. It is Document 1390-PS, and it sets forth that decree, which has already been introduced in evidence before the Tribunal and is included in Exhibit USA B. It was this decree which was the basis for the so-called "Schutshaft ", that is, protective custody - the terrible power to imprison people without judicial proceedings. This is made clear by Document 2499-PS, which is a typical order for protective custody. We offer it for that purpose, as a typical order for protective custody which has come into the possession of the prosecution. It is Exhibit USA 232. I should like to quote from the body of that order:-

"Order of Protective Custody.

Based on Article 1 of the Decree of the Reich President for the Protection of People and State of 28th February, 1933 (Reichsgesetzblatt, Page 83), you are taken into protective custody in the interest of public security and order.

Reason: Suspicion of activities inimical toward the State."

Defendant Goering in a book entitled Aufbau einer Nation, published in 1934, sought to give the impression, it appears, that the camps were originally directed at those whom the Nazis considered Communists and Social Democrats. We refer to Document 2324-PS, Exhibit USA 233. This

[Page 361]

document is an excerpt from Page 89 of the German book. We refer to the third and fourth paragraphs of the document, which I read as follows:
"We had to deal ruthlessly with these enemies of the State. It must not be forgotten that at the moment of our seizure of power over 6,000,000 people officially voted for Communism and about 8,000,000 for Marxism in the Reichstag elections in March.

Thus the Concentration Camps were created, to which we had to send first, thousands of functionaries of the Communist and Social Democratic parties."

In practical operations, the power to order confinement in these camps was almost without limit. The defendant Frick, in an order which he issued on 25th January, 1938, as Minister of the Interior, made this quite clear. An extract from this order is set forth in Document 1723-PS, to which we make reference. It is Exhibit USA 206. I wish to read Article 1, beginning at the bottom of Page 5 of the English translation of this order:-
"Protective custody can be decreed as a coercive measure of the Secret State Police against persons who endanger the security of the people and the State through their attitude, in order to counter all aspirations of enemies of the people and State."

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