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

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
4th April to 15th April, 1946

One Hundred and Third Day: Tuesday, 9th April, 1946
(Part 10 of 12)

[MAJOR ELWYN JONES continues his cross examination of Hans Heinrich Lammers]

[Page 176]

Q. Just go on to the next sentence of your statement:
"In this connection we must consider how the executives, whose inadequacy is the subject of strong complaints by the plenipotentiary for labour, can be strengthened on the one hand by the exercise of influence on the foreign governments and on the other hand the expansion of our executive forces and the inclusion of a larger percentage of the Wehrmacht, the police or of other German establishments."
That is how you opened that conference, you know.

A. That is quite correct. These were the problems that had to be discussed.

Q. To produce more forced labour and discover by what terrorising by the police and by what pressure by Ribbentrop the results could be achieved? That was the object of the conference, was it not?

A. No, our object was not to consider how we might terrorise people but how we could carry out official decrees with the necessary executive power to back them up. Surely no terrorist measures are implied in saying that something must be done in a matter. I could describe a case in France, for instance. The workers recruited by Sauckel in France were brought to the railroad station by French executives for transportation as prescribed by the French compulsory labour decree. Everything was arranged ...

Q. Just answer my questions, will you? You are going on to a different matter.

A. I did not suggest terrorist measures. Some compulsion must be exercised by every State authority; but compulsion is by no means terrorism or a crime or violation.

Q. I just draw your attention to the contribution of General Warlimont in this discussion, where he said that:

"The troops put into operation against the partisans will take over, in addition, the task of raising man-power in the partisan areas. Everyone who cannot account satisfactorily for his presence in these areas is to be seized."

[Page 177]

And you said:
"On further inquiry by the Reich Minister, Dr. Lammers" - this is on Page 10 of the English record - "as to whether members of the population fit for employment could not be withdrawn along with the troops, Colonel Sahs (Plenipotentiary General for Italy) stated that Field Marshal Kesselring had already decreed that the population of an area extending to a depth of 30 kilometres behind the front was to be captured."
The whole emphasis of that conference was on the use of force, was it not, and the collaboration of the executive agencies of the State to procure the necessary forced labour for the Reich?

A. A certain degree of coercion was to be applied undoubtedly.

MAJOR ELWYN JONES: There are only two more matters, my Lord, which I feel that it is my duty to put to the witness.

Q. On the question of the massacre of the Jewish people, you said in your evidence before the adjournment that you, yourself, had saved 200,000 Jews. Do you remember saying that to the Tribunal?

A. Yes.

Q. You saved them from extermination, you meant, I take it?

A. No, I merely saved them from evacuation and nothing else. I found out afterwards, of course - now - that in actual fact I really did save them from death. You have ...

Q. You know you have testified - just a moment - you have testified to the Tribunal as to a conference which took place early in 1943 where you were invited by the Reichssicherheitshauptamt to send a representative to the conference dealing with the Jewish problem. Do you remember saying that to the Tribunal?

A. Yes, the matter was discussed. It was a conference of experts.

Q. That was the famous conference which Eichmann presided over, do you remember?

A. That I do not know. I did not attend it myself; I merely sent a subordinate.

Q. The invitation to attend the conference, that came from Kaltenbrunner, did it not?

A. The invitation came from the R.S.H.A.

Q. Not from Kaltenbrunner personally?

A. I do not know.

Q. And you sent a representative to the conference, did you not?

A. Someone had to go as my representative; and he had specific orders simply to listen and not to make any comments during the conference, because I reserved for myself the right to report on this to the Fuehrer.

Q. Was your representative at this conference instructed by you to take no attitude? Was that what you said to the Tribunal?

A. He was given express orders not to make any comments. My State Secretary, who gave him the instructions, can confirm this. He could not do so in any case, since no decisions were reached. But he was not to make any comments on his own initiative because I intended to discuss this question, which was at that time described as "the final solution of the Jewish problem," with the Fuehrer. For this reason, I deliberately gave the order "No comments!"

Q. You sent Gottfried Bohle as your representative to that conference, did you not?

A. I did not send him; my State Secretary sent him, and he was not even a competent expert, but was accidentally ...

Q. Just answer my questions briefly, won't you? Gottfried Bohle made a report to you, did he not?

A. I received a short written report, not a verbal report.

Q. And did that report indicate to you that Eichmann was planning extermination?

[Page 178]

A. No, there was nothing about that; and we did not know about it. At least, I cannot remember that there was anything in it that would have caused me to take any immediate action.

Q. Yesterday you told the Tribunal that concentration camps were not mentioned in the Reich budget. Do you remember saying that?

A. That what was not mentioned?

Q. Yesterday -

A. I do not know. I did not find or read anything about it.

Q. Yesterday you told the Tribunal that nothing was mentioned in the Reich budget about concentration camps.

A. I did not find anything and I did not read anything on that subject. I do not know anything about it. Such matters did not interest me much anyway.

Q. You are saying now that you do not know whether there were any references to concentration camps in the budget or not?

A. I could not say for certain. I do not remember any specific mention of the concentration camps in the budget.

Q. Does it surprise you to know that in the 1939 budget for the armed S.S. and concentration camps in the Ministry of the Interior budget there was a sum of 104,000,000 marks and 21,000,000 marks set out as expenses for those objects? Did you know that?

A. I did not study every item of the budget drawn up by the Minister of the Interior. I did not read any budgets at all. I was interested only in my own budgets in the Reich Chancellery; I did not read those of other offices. I had no reason to do so.

Q. Did you know that there were over 300 concentration camps in Nazi Germany?

A. No, I did not know that.

Q. Of how many did you, as head of the Reich Chancellery, know?

A. I only knew about a few.

Q. Only a few.

A. Three at the most.

Q. Are you solemnly, on oath -

A. But I did know that others existed.

Q. Are you solemnly, on oath, saying to the Tribunal that you, in the very centre of the web of Nazism, didn't know of the existence of more than three concentration camps?

A. Yes, I do mean to say so. I was not in the very centre of Nazism; I was the head administrative official who did administrative work for the Fuehrer. I did not concern myself with concentration camps. I knew of some concentration camps, that is of two or three; and it was clear to me that others must exist. I cannot say more under oath.

Q. I put it to you that you knew quite well of this regime of terror but continued to serve in it until the last. Is that not so?

A. What regime of terror? The concentration camp system existed. I knew that; everyone knew that.

Q. But that didn't trouble your conscience, I take it.

A. That they existed?

I submitted my proposals with regard to the concentration camps to the Fuehrer; and he excluded me from the entire question as early as 1934 - after I had made suggestions to him about concentration camps - and turned the whole matter over to Himmler, and I had to transmit to him all complaints about concentration camps. I had nothing whatever to do with concentration camps except when I received complaints; and these I regarded as being addressed to the Fuehrer. I pursued them as far as possible; and was able to help at least some of them.

Q. You, of course, were an S.S. Obergruppenfuehrer. Perhaps you didn't recognise terror when you heard and saw it.

[Page 179]

A. I was S.S. Obergruppenfuehrer, which was an honorary rank, just as I said before of Seyss-Inquart. I performed no official duties in the S.S.; I had no command, no official status or anything.Q. And you profited considerably - you and your Nazi colleagues - from this regime, did you not? You, as the Comptroller of the Reich Chancellery funds, can probably assist us in that matter.

A. What did I have - considerable what?

Q. Funds, money, Reichsmarks.

A. Yes, I had an income, naturally.

Q. And you were responsible for directing -

A. Not as an S.S. Fuehrer.

Q. As Reich Chancellor you were responsible for distributing the largess of the Nazis among yourselves, were you not?

A. I was in charge of the Fuehrer's funds; and on his instructions I made the necessary payments out of those funds. I could not spend money as I pleased.

Q. You, as Reich Chancellor, delivered a million Reichsmarks to Dr. Ley, did you not?

A. That was a payment that the Fuehrer specifically approved for Dr. Ley. I did not do that on my own initiative.

Q. And Ribbentrop was another recipient of a million, was he not?

A. He received a million in instalments, first one half and then the other.

Q. And Keitel was another millionaire, was he not? He received a million, did he not?

A. He received a sum of money and an estate, because the Fuehrer renewed the practice of the old Prussian kings of granting land and money to his generals.

Q. And you yourself received six hundred thousand marks, did you not?

A. I received six hundred thousand marks on my sixty-fifth birthday. I received this sum because I had never received anything in my previous positions, since I had never asked for it - also because I had twice been bombed out and had no house or property of my own. The Fuehrer wished me to buy a small house.


If your Lordship will allow me to clarify the exhibit numbers of the documents I have put in: Document 3863-PS is Exhibit GB 220; 2220-PS is USA 175; 686-PS is USA 305; 865- PS is USA 143; 1032-PS is GB 321; 871-PS is GB 322; D-753 is GB 323; 3601-PS is GB 324; 997-PS is RF 122;1296-PS is GB 325; 1292-PS is USA 225; 3819-PS is GB 306.

THE PRESIDENT: Major Elwyn Jones, have you put in the budget which shows the figures that you gave us?

MAJOR ELWYN JONES: It is on Page 1394 of the 1939 budget. For the purposes of the record, it will be Exhibit GB 326.


MAJOR ELWYN JONES: The prosecution will have an extract made from this vast volume, my Lord, for the purposes of the court document.


Colonel Pokrovsky, the Tribunal thought that there was only going to be one cross-examination of the witnesses who were not defendants.

COLONEL POKROVSKY: The Soviet Delegation wished to question the witness Lammers. It was suggested that the interrogation be split up into two parts, some of the questions to be asked by the British Delegation and the others by the Soviet Delegation.

MAJOR ELWYN JONES: If your Lordship pleases -

THE PRESIDENT: Was this the one case that was mentioned?

MAJOR ELWYN JONES: This is the exceptional case, my Lord, and the agreement was made before the new ruling as to cross- examination was introduced. My colleague, Colonel Pokrovsky, and I did agree to share the work, and there are very

[Page 180]

few matters which Colonel Pokrovsky has indicated which he desires to put, and that was in agreement between the prosecution.



Q. On 6th November, 1945, you were interrogated by a representative of the Soviet Prosecution. Do you remember this interrogation?

A. Yes, I do remember an interrogation by a representative of the Soviet prosecution.

Q. You testified at the time that Hitler -

A. Yes. I testified.

Q. You don't know what I am talking about, so don't hurry.

Now, you testified that Hitler authorised you to render help to Rosenberg. You remember that, do you not?

A. Yes, Rosenberg was to take over the political work in connection with Eastern problems.

Q. What was your help to Rosenberg?

A. To begin with, it only meant that I had an interview with him, at which he discussed his plans for a possible administration to be established. The Fuehrer had given him instructions to consider how, in the case of war with Russia, the country might be occupied and administered. For this Herr Rosenberg ...

[ Previous | Index | Next ] [an error occurred while processing this directive]