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

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
27th May to 6th June, 1946

One Hundred and Forty-Third Day: Friday, 31st May, 1946
(Part 6 of 13)

[Page 196]

THE PRESIDENT: Do you have the PS number?

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: No, Sir, that is a USSR document.


Q. There is an addendum, No. 2, to your directive, dated the 8th September, 1942. This addendum is entitled, "Instructions to housewives on the employment of domestic workers from the East in urban and rural households". Do you know this document? This memorandum?

[Page 197]

[Sauckel] A. Yes.

I shall now quote a few excerpts in order to describe the conditions which you imposed on those Ukrainian women and girls who had been sent to work on agricultural tasks in Germany. Please find Section B, "Registration with the Police, Identification Marks and Supervision". Have you found that section?

A. No, not yet.

Q. Section B. Have you found it?

A. Page 4?

Q. Section B, dealing with "Registration with the Police, Identification Marks and Supervision" contains the following instructions:

"The Eastern woman worker is obliged to carry the identification mark, "Ost", on the right breast of each of her outer garments".
A. I have not found it.

Q. You will find it later, that order is included there.

A. Yes, please, but I must be able to follow you.

Q. Have you found it?

A. Yes.

Q. Now paragraph 4. It is entitled "Labour Conditions". It is written there that "Domestic women workers from the East employed in the Reich are to work under specific labour conditions".

We shall see later what these specific German labour conditions were. Please find paragraph 9, sentence 1, "Time off". The opening sentence states:

"No claim to time off exists".
A. Yes, but I must ask you to read on. It says exactly the same as applies to the German household staff, who also -

Q. I shall now read the whole of paragraph 9 into the record.

THE PRESIDENT: General, I do not think you should interrupt him when he is making a legitimate explanation. You should wait until he has made his explanation, and then draw attention to anything in the rest of the document that you wish to. Now, what did you wish to say, defendant?

THE WITNESS: I asked for a further part to be read. There is a sentence in which it is stated a weekly outing can nevertheless be granted. May I read the sentence once more:-.

"Domestic women workers from the East may, as a matter of principle, only move outside confines of the household when attending to household matters. However, on a probationary basis the opportunity can be granted them once a week to remain outside of the household for three hours, without employment."
The same also held good for German domestic workers at that time. "Time off" amounts to the same thing.

Q. Not "a day off". It is written differently here. "However, if the conduct is good".

A. Yes, in their free time - it is the same thing.

Q. Not in their free time. It is said there: A possibility may arise, once a week, for three hours to be granted free from all work, to be spent beyond the confines of the household. The outing must end before darkness falls, 2000 hours at the latest. So that we are not dealing with a "day off", but with three hours off. Now find Section 10.

A. But I did not say that. Because of the blackout, this curfew also applied to German employees during the war.

Q, Now find paragraph 10: "Leave and return to one's native land". That is the heading of this particular passage. Have you found it? It is written:

"Above all, no leave shall be granted. Domestic women workers from the East are recruited for an indefinite period".
A. I should like to add, in this connection -

[Page 198]

THE PRESIDENT: General, I think you can pass on from this. You know - this is not a matter of very great importance.

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: Mr. President, I should like defendant Sauckel to explain the discrepancies which have arisen in his testimony in regard to Document ETs-68, and in regard to what was written in his directive, issued in 1942, on the employment of Ukrainian women for domestic service in Germany. I wish to receive this reply in order to eliminate the discrepancies which have arisen.

THE WITNESS: I am in a position to answer that question very precisely.

Q. Yes?

A. This memorandum was not composed by me alone. Quite a large number of points were introduced at that time by the Reichsfuehrer SS. Already as far back as the spring of 1943 I succeeded in having these paragraphs altered: the indefinite period of employment for the women workers from the East was limited to two years. Furthermore, in a document which - I believe - my Defence Counsel will also submit to the Tribunal, it is proved that the revocation of the restricting conditions, as applied to the Eastern workers, was the result of my endeavours. I wished to revoke these conditions in the very beginning, as I correctly stated in my first answer, so that they became equal to conditions for other foreign workers and to those for the German workers.

This was my aim and my conception of my duty, as I performed it. I was particularly glad to do so for the Eastern workers, since they were the best workers we had in Germany.

Q. I now go on to the next question. On 18th August, 1942, you had a meeting with defendant Frank in Cracow. I shall read out what has been written about this meeting in Frank's diary. That would be Exhibit USSR 223. It is stated - the document is bound in calico - under the heading, "Diary, 1942, Vol. III, page 918":

"I am happy to be able to inform you officially Party Member Sauckel, that we have, so far, transported more than 8,000 workers into the Reich.

A short time ago you applied for 140,000 more workers. Over and above this current figure of 140,000 you can, next year, count on a further number of workers from the Governor General, for we shall employ the Police for recruiting purposes."

Does that tally with the actual facts? Did such a conversation between you and Frank take place. Has it been correctly entered in his diary?

A. I cannot possibly confirm an entry which I have never seen before, and details of which I cannot possibly recollect. I, therefore, cannot say that all of it is correct. Those are future possibilities visualised by Herr Frank. I can, however, on the strength of the documents before me, say that the employment of Polish civilian workers

THE PRESIDENT: If you do not remember, why do you not say so and stop?


Q. But did he speak to you about resorting to police methods in the recruitment of manpower, or did he not mention it? Do you remember this or do you not?

A. I cannot possibly remember this communication which took place in 1942. Conditions at that time were so utterly different.

Q. In his activities, where the recruiting of manpower was concerned, did defendant Funk resort to police measures or not? Do you know about it?

A. I cannot, from my own knowledge, tell you to what extent the Governor General solved this problem by the employment of police forces. Please ask him yourself.

[Page 199]

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: I am submitting a document to the Tribunal, Exhibit USSR 469, which describes the methods of labour recruitment as applied in the territory of Poland. This document is an official directive, printed by the "Kreishauptmann" of the Minsk and Warsaw district. It is dated 2nd February, 1943. This directive was handed to Kazimir Navak, who was born on 6th May, 1926, and domiciled in Dyzin, in the Kolbey community. It is written in this connection that:
"Pursuant to a compulsory decree governing the recruitment of manpower, dated 13th May, 1942 (Verordnungsblatt GG, Page 22), I direct you to work in the Reich."
The following stands at the bottom of this directive page:
"In case of insubordination..."
THE PRESIDENT: Is this a document you are putting in evidence now for the first time?

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: This document is being presented for the first time.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, we have not got the document - have you got any copies of it?

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: Yes, it should have been handed to you. The document, Mr. President, is not included in the Document Book.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you offering it now for the first time, or is it already in evidence?

Did you not hear that?

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: Yes, I hear you, Mr. President. This document is being presented for the first time.

THE PRESIDENT: We do not seem to have it, anyhow. I mean, I have not a copy of it.

GENERAL ALEXANDROV: The original document has just been handed to the defendant, and he has got it. The copies in German were handed to the Tribunal.

THE PRESIDENT: I have it now in German.


Q. It is stated at the bottom of this directive:

"Should you disobey this compulsory work order, the members of your family (parents, wife, brothers and sisters, children) will be placed in a punitive police camp and will only be released after you have reported for duty. Moreover, I reserve the right to confiscate your personal and real property as well as the personal and real property of the members of your family. Moreover you, in accordance with paragraph 5 of the above- mentioned directive, will be punished with confinement in prison, or with penal servitude or with internment in a concentration camp."
Did you know anything about the application of such methods for the recruitment of manpower in the territory of Poland and of the existence of defendant Frank's directives?

A. I can openly and clearly answer that the threat of such penalties in this form was completely unknown to me and that I would never have sanctioned it. If I had learned of it, I would have stopped it immediately. I must, however, beg permission to tell the Tribunal that this appendix at the end of the document, regarded as coming from my office, is incorrect and was not sanctioned by me. The first paragraph of this document reads correctly and I request permission to quote it; it is in harmony with German Labour Legislation and reads:

"Pursuant to the compulsory service decree, dated 13th May, 1942, I engage you for labour in the Reich.

[Page 200]

"Your employment in the Reich will fall within the framework of properly regulated working conditions, and your wages paid according to a regular scale. Wage savings can be transmitted regularly by you to your home. Close relatives, to whose support you have hitherto been contributing substantially, may apply to the labour office for special allowances."
GENERAL ALEXANDROV: Was that written at the bottom of the directive?

THE PRESIDENT: We need not have the details.


Q. I want to remind you now of certain directives which were issued in regard to the so-called recruitment of manpower, directives which were issued by your government organizations in Germany, and personally by yourself in your own famous programme. The document is Exhibit USSR 365, and you wrote the following -

A. I have not got it here.

Q. You will be helped to find it.

Have you been shown the passage which I am now going to read into the record?

A. Yes.

Q. It is written there:

"It is therefore unavoidably necessary to exhaust completely the man-power reserves now available in the conquered Soviet territories. If it is not possible to obtain the required number of workers on a voluntary basis then steps must be taken immediately to conscript them, that is, compulsory engagement."
Did you issue these instructions?

A. I have not found these passages so far. They have not been pointed out to me properly.

Q. You will at once be shown the passage. Did you ever issue these instructions?

A. I myself was not able to issue service contracts in the occupied territories, that had to be done by the territorial authorities. But by compulsion I did not understand there to be such penalties threatened to the extent as has been stated in that one document signed by Bittrich, but according to the rule and example of German regulations, the difference is a very substantial one.

Q. Was that what I have just read out to you included in your programme or not?

A. It says so in my programme... but I have definitely mentioned that I was enjoined to do so by the Fuehrer.

Q. Let us proceed. In the letter of 3rd October, 1942, addressed to Gauleiter Meyer you wrote (this document, No. 017 -PS, will be handed to you in a moment. Please follow me when I read):

"I do not underestimate the difficulties connected with the execution of the new task, but I am convinced that with the ruthless employment of all means - "
(I should like to underline that "all means".)
"and with the absolute devotion to their task of all the participants the new quota can be filled by the date fixed."
Did you write that?

A. I wrote that, yes. But I want you to let me give you an explicit explanation: In all my directives I invariably demanded the most considerate treatment for the workers; that has already been proved in the trial. If I now refer to the ruthless use of all possible means, by this I only mean the ruthless use of all technical and propagandistic means, it is because I was told from different sources that such means were not available there to a sufficient degree. This is an explanation of the background of this letter.

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