The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Twenty-First Day: Monday, 17th December, 1945
(Part 8 of 16)

[Page 22]

COLONEL STOREY: Your Honour will notice that we have substituted an enlarged chart for the photostatic copy that was introduced in evidence this morning. Another thing I would like to call your Honour's attention to is the fact that the other chart, the big one, was dated 1945 and therefore did not show the defendant Hess, because of his flight to England in 1941, and it will be recalled that the defendant Hess occupied the position before Bormann directly under the Fuehrer in the Party organisation.

We now take up the Hoheitstraeger. The Hoheitstraeger, turning from the text, is shown on this chart very well, and all of those shown in the black block constitute the Hoheitstraeger, beginning with the Fuehrer and going down the vertical column clear down to the black line.

[Page 23]

Within the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party certain of the Political Leaders possessed a higher degree of responsibility than others, were vested with special prerogatives, and constituted a distinctive and elite group within the Party hierarchy. Those were the so-called "Hoheitstraeger" (Bearers of Sovereignty) who represented the Party within their areas of jurisdiction which are sections of Germany, the so-called Hoheitsgebiet. I now quote from Page 9 of the English translation of Document 1893-PS:--
"Among the political leaders, the Hoheitstraeger assume a special position. Contrary to the other Political Leaders who have departmental missions, the Hoheitstraeger themselves are in charge of a geographical sector known as the Hoheitsgebiet (Sectors of Sovereignty).

"Hoheitstraeger" are:

The "Fuehrer"
The "Gauleiter"
The "Kreisleiter"
The "Ortsgruppenleiter"
The "Zellenleiter"
The "Blockleiter"
"Hoheitsgebiete" are:
The "Reich"
The "Gau"
The "Kreis"
The "Ortsgruppe"
The "Zelle"
The "Block"
Within their sector of sovereignty the Hoheitstraeger have sovereign political rights. They represent the Party within their sector. The Hoheitstraeger supervise all Party officers within their jurisdiction and are responsible for the maintenance of discipline. The directors of offices, etc., and of the affiliated organisations are responsible to their respective Hoheitstraeger as regards their special missions. The Hoheitstraeger are superior to all political leaders, managers, etc., within their sector.

The Hoheitstraeger of the Party are not to be administrative officials but are to move in a continuous vital contact with the Political Leaders of the population within their sector. The Hoheitstraeger are responsible for the proper and good supervision of all members of the nation within their sector.

The Party intends to achieve a state of affairs in which the individual German will find his way to the Party."

The distinctive character of the Politische Leiter constituting the Hoheitstraeger and their existence and operation as an identifiable group are indicated by the publication of a magazine entitled `Der Hoheitstraeger' whose distribution was limited by regulation of the Reich Organisation Leader to the Hoheitstraeger and certain other designated Politische Leiter. I now refer to Document 2660- PS, which I offer in evidence as Exhibit USA 235, and I quote from the inside cover of this magazine which reads as follows:--
"'Der Hoheitstraeger, the contents of which is to be handled confidentially, serves only for the orientation of the competent leaders. It may not be loaned out to other persons."

[Page 24]

Then follows a list of the Hoheitstraeger and other Political Leaders authorised to receive the magazine.

The magazine states, in addition, that the following are entitled to receive it -- I would like to emphasise who these were,

"Commandants, Unit Commanders, and Candidates of Order Castles; The Reich Speakers, Shock Troop Speakers and Gau Speakers of the N.S.D.A.P.; the Lieutenant Generals and Major Generals of S.A., S.S., N.S.F.K. -- which is the Flying Corps -- and N.S.K.K. -- the Motor Corps -- Lieutenant Generals and Major Generals of the H.J. -- that is the Hitler Jugend."
The fact that this magazine existed, that it derived its name from the commanding officers of the Leadership Corps, that it was distributed to the elite of the Leadership Corps, in other words, that a House Bulletin was circulated down the command channels of the Leadership Corps is probative of the fact that the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party was a group or an organisation within the meaning of Article 9 of the Charter.

An examination of the contents of the magazine, `Der Hoheitstraeger,' reveals a continuing concern by the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party in measures and doctrines which were employed throughout the course of the conspiracy charged in the Indictment. I shall not trouble the Tribunal nor encumber the record by offering in evidence exhaustive enumeration of these matters; but it may serve to clarify the plans and policies of the inner elite of the Leadership Corps by indicating that a random sampling of articles published and policies advocated in the various issues of the magazine from February, 1937, to October, 1938, included the following: slanderous anti-Semitic articles, attacks on Catholicism and the Christian religion and clergy; the need for motorised armament; the urgent need for expanded Lebensraum and colonies; persistent attacks on the League of Nations; the use of the Block and Cell in achieving favourable Party votes; the intimate association between the Wehrmacht and the Political Leadership; the racial doctrines of Fascism, the cult of leadership; the role of the Gaue, Ortsgruppen, and Zellen in the expansion of Germany; and related matters all of which constituted elements and doctrinal techniques in the carrying out of the conspiracy charged in the Indictment.

The Political Leaders were organised according to the Leadership Principle. I quote from the fourth paragraph of Page 2 of Document 1893-PS, at the bottom of the page and top of Page 3:--

"The basis of the Party organisation is the Fuehrer thought. The public is unable to rule itself either directly or indirectly. All Political Leaders stand as appointed by the Fuehrer and are responsible to him. They possess full authority toward the lower echelons. Only a man who has absorbed through the school of subordinate functions within the Party has a claim to the higher Fuehrer offices. We can only use Fuehrer who have risen from the ranks. Any Political Leader who does not conform to these principles is to be dismissed or to be sent back to the lower offices, as Blockleiter or Zellenleiter, for further training. The Political Leader is not an office worker but the Political Deputy of the Fuehrer. Within the Political Leadership of the State we are building the leadership of the Party. The type of the Political Leader is not characterised by the office which he represents. There is no such thing as a Political

[Page 25]

Leader of the N.S.B.O., etc., but there is only the Political Leader of the N.S.D.A.P."
Each Political Leader was sworn in yearly. According to the Party Manual the wording of the oath was as follows; and I quote from the second paragraph on Page 3, Document 1893-PS:- -
"I pledge eternal allegiance to Adolf Hitler; I pledge unconditional obedience to him and the Fuehrers appointed by him."
The Organisation Book of the N.S.D.A.P. also provides, and I quote from Page 3, Paragraph 4, of the same document:--
"The Political Leader is inseparably tied to the ideology and the organisation of the N.S.D.A.P. His oath only ends with his death or with his expulsion from the National Socialist Community."
Appointment of Political Leaders.

With respect to the appointment of the Political Leaders constituting the Leadership Corps of the Party, I quote from Page 4 of the Organisation Book, which is Document 1893-PS:--

"The Fuehrer appoints the following Political Leaders:--

(a) All Reichsleiter and all Political Leaders within the Reichsleitung (Reich Party Directorate) including women's leaders.

(b) All Gauleiter, including the Political Leaders holding offices in the Gauleitung (Gau Party Directorate) including Gau women's leaders.

(c) All Kreisleiter.

The Gauleiter appoints:

(a) The Political Leaders and women's leaders within the Gau Party Directorate.

(b) The Political Leaders and the directors of women's leagues in the Kreis Party Directorate.

(c) All Ortsgruppenleiter.

The Kreisleiter appoints the Political Leaders and the Directors of the Women's Leagues of the Ortsgruppen, including the Block and Cell Leaders...."

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