Nuremberg, war crimes, crimes against humanity

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
29th July to 8th August 1946

One Hundred and Eighty-Ninth Day: Monday, 29th July, 1946
(Part 12 of 12)

[GENERAL RUDENKO continues.]

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Notwithstanding the fact that during the war years the defendant Julius, Streicher did not formally hold offices directly connected with the perpetration of murders and mass executions, it is hard to overestimate the crimes committed by this man.

Together with Himmler, Kaltenbrunner, Pohl and those who conceived, constructed and brought into action the gas chambers and "gas wagons"; together with those who personally committed mass "actions," Streicher must bear responsibility for the monstrous crimes of German Fascism.

The incitement to national and racial dissension, the cultivation of perverted cruelty and the call to murder-all these not only represented the Party duties of this man for many years, they were also the source of his income.

And it is not by accident that in his greeting to Streicher of April, 1937, which is already known to the Tribunal, Himmler expressed his high esteem for the merits of Der Sturmer and of its publisher.

One can consider Streicher as the actual " spiritual father " of those who quartered the children of Treblinka. Had it not been for Der Sturmer and its pub-

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lisher, German Fascism would not have been able to educate at such short notice those mass murder gangs who put into effect the criminal plans of Hitler and his thugs, by murdering over six million European Jews.

Over a period of many years Streicher spiritually corrupted the children and the youth of Germany. The so-called "children's editions" of Der Sturmer have been submitted to the Tribunal.

And therefore, together with Baldur von Schirach, Streicher must bear responsibility for the selection of Jewish children from the Lvov ghetto for target practice by the morally perverted "Hitlerjugend." It is not by accident that von Schirach held Streicher's "historical merits" in so high esteem.

The fanatical "Nuremberg laws" were only the "beginning of the struggle for" Judophobe No. 1 " (as he called himself), who was also the organizer of the first Jewish pogroms. As the Tribunal will recall, after these laws were issued, Streicher called for the actual extermination of the Jews in Europe and wrote: " This problem will only be solved when world Jewry is exterminated."

I will not dwell again, either, on the shameless and mendacious "ritual numbers" of Der Sturmer, intended to incite the SS men to the killing of millions of innocent persons and to justify any atrocity directed against the Jews. These proofs of Streicher's guilt, which were, inter alia, submitted to the Tribunal, are indisputable and of common knowledge.

In 1939 he anticipated Maidanek and Treblinka and wrote that "perhaps graves alone will testify to the previous existence of Jews in Europe."

In 1943, when the gas chambers of Treblinka and Auschwitz were already engulfing millions of victims, Der Sturmer published articles inciting to the liquidation of the " ghetto," articles full of lies and malice, and finally Der Sturmer could state with sadistic satisfaction that: "The Jews of Europe have disappeared."

Streicher lied all his life. He attempted to lie here, in Court. I do not know whether he believed he would be able to deceive anybody by these lies, or whether he lied from habit or from fear.

But it seems to me that it must be apparent, even to the defendant himself, that his last lie will not deceive anybody and will never bring him salvation.


In carrying out a vast and complicated task, the defendant Hjalmar Schacht played a prominent part in the preparation and realization of the criminal plans of the Nazi conspirators.

Schacht's position, where his defence is concerned, is extremely simple.

If he is to be believed, purely patriotic motives attracted him to Hitlerism. He was against aggressive wars, but in favour of rearmament for Germany in order to maintain peace. He was all for the return of Germany's colonies in view of establishing economic stability in Europe.

Having come to the conviction that the policy of the Nazi Government was directed towards excessive armament and thereby threatened another world war, Schacht went over to the opposition. He sabotaged the measures taken by the Hitlerite Government and, as a result, he was persecuted as a participant in the plot against Hitler.

Defendant Schacht now strives to depict the enthusiastic letters, full of exprestions of loyalty, which he addressed to Hitler as a method of camouflaging his true feeling of opposition towards the Hitlerite regime.

Actually, Schacht's connection with the Nazi movement dates back to 1930. Schacht gravitated towards National Socialism, and both Hitler and Goering sought Schacht's support. Indeed, the latter, with his vast connections in Germany's industrial and financial spheres, could, like nobody else, render invaluable services to the Nazi movement. And this he did.

As far back as 29th August, 1932, in a letter addressed to Hitler, Schacht assured the latter of his loyalty.

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These were not mere words, for, more than anybody, defendant Schacht played a decisive part in Hitler's advent to power. It was he, Schacht, who organized the demand formulated by the German industrialists for Hitler to be appointed "Reich Chancellor."

As early as 1932, he, Schacht, declared to von Papen, then Reich Chancellor of Germany: "Hand over your post to Hitler."

It was Schacht again who, in 1933, on the eve of the Reichstag elections, called the conference of industrialists which created an election fund of several million marks for the Nazi Party.

Hitler's closest follower, Goebbels, thus characterizes the part played by Schacht and his importance in the creation of Nazi Germany. On the 21st November, 1932, he wrote down in his diary:

"In a talk with Dr. Schacht, I came to the conviction that he fully shares our point of view. He is one of the few who absolutely agree with the position of the Fuehrer."
In his Spring Fair speech at Leipzig, on the 4th March, 1935, the defendant Schacht himself defined his part in the Nazi State:
"I can assure you that all that I do and say is in full agreement with the Fuehrer, and that I will do and say nothing that would not be approved by the Fuehrer. That is why it is the Fuehrer, and not I, who is the guardian of all economic intelligence."
As expected by Schacht, Hitler appreciated his merits at their full value. On his advent to power in 1933, Hitler first appointed Schacht to the post of President of the Reichsbank, then to the Ministry of National Economy and finally to the post of General Plenipotentiary on matters of War Economy.

The prosecution and the proceedings have proved the extraordinary part played by Schacht in the preparation of German armaments and, consequently, in the launching of aggressive wars.

The former War Minister, von Blomberg, testified that in 1937 the development plans of the armed forces were nearing completion and that Schacht was informed of these plans and of their financing.

Schacht was one of the most consistent supporters of the Nazi criminal plans. In a talk with the United States Ambassador, Fuller, on the 23rd September, 1936, Schacht stated that: "Germany absolutely needs colonies. If it is possible, we shall acquire them by negotiations. If not, we shall seize them."

Speaking in Vienna in March, 1938, Schacht declared:

"Thank God, this could not hinder the great German people in its forward march, because Adolf Hitler unified German will and German thought. He strengthened it with reborn armed forces and in the end he gave an outer shape to the inner unity of Germany and Austria."
Defendant Schacht was entrusted with extraordinary powers in the sphere of war economy.

Over a period of many years, Schacht cumulated the functions of President of the Reichsbank, Minister of Economics and Plenipotentiary General of War Economy.

If only as a result of these functions, the defendant Schacht played an enormous and decisive part in the creation and resurrection of Nazi Germany's war economy and armed forces.

This activity of the defendant Schacht is clearly described in the numerous laudatory letters which he received from Hitler.

The defendant Schacht, and no other, was the creator of the adventurous method Of issuing so-called " MEFO bills," by which twelve million Reichmarks were allotted, apart from budget allocations, to Germany's economy for purposes of rearmament.

As mentioned above, the defendant Schacht attempted, at various periods of his activities, to stress his alleged and ever-increasing dissension with the Nazi

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regime. In reality, Schacht was playing a double game. On the one hand he shielded himself from the responsibility for the criminal policy of the Nazi Government, by flirting with persons who actually did strive to overthrow this regime on the other hand, he remained loyal to the regime.

It was only in 1943, when the downfall of Nazi Germany became apparent to such a hard-boiled politician as Schacht, that he contacted the circle of the opposition. However, true to himself, he took precautions for any event and did not actually do anything personally to overthrow the Nazi regime. That is why Hitler spared him.

This is the portrait of the defendant Schacht, and this is the part he played in Hitler's conspiracy and war crimes.

It is the part of the creator of Nazi Germany's war economy and of an instigator of the Second World War, launched by the criminal Nazi Government.


Walter Funk became a Nazi long before his official admission in 1931 into the membership of the NSDAP, and he remained a Nazi to the end. His economic knowledge, his experience as a journalist, his extensive connections with the leaders of German industry, trade and finance, were placed by him at the service of the Hitlerite conspirators.

An article published in the newspaper Das Reich on 13th August, 1940, under the heading "Walter Funk - Pioneer of National Socialist Thought," read as follows:

"Walter Funk was true to his principles because he was, is and always will be a true National Socialist, a champion devoting all his labours to the victory of the Fuehrer's ideals."
The Fuehrer's ideals are only too well known. Funk devoted fifteen years of his life to these "ideals."

Funk declared that he had nothing in common with the SS, but it was he, Funk, who transformed the vaults of the Reichsbank into depositories for the treasures plundered by the SS men in the Eastern and other occupied territories.

Funk personally gave the orders, after his negotiations with Himmler, to take into the Reichsbank the gold teeth and plates, the spectacle frames and other valuables belonging to the victims tortured to death in numerous concentration .camps.

The Gruppenfuehrer SS Hoiler was Funk's deputy. Also under Funk's direction operated Ohlendorf, the murderer, with the death of 90,000 persons on his conscience.

Funk, in supplement of Schacht's measures, placed the whole of Germany's economy at the service of Hitlerite plans for aggression and, later on, the economy of the territories occupied by Germany.

As far back as in May, 1939, Funk, together with his deputy, Landfried, elaborated plans for financing the war and utilizing the economic resources of Germany, and of Czechoslovakia, which had already been seized, for war purposes.

On 23rd June, 1939, Funk took part in the conference of the Reich Defence Council, which adopted detailed plans for the placing of all national economy on a war footing.

Already at that time, Funk was not only informed of Germany's impending attack on Poland, was not only co-operating in the realization of this aggressive plan, but was also economically preparing new war, and the seizure of new territories. These were the Fuehrer's " great political aims " which were set out by Funk a few months later, in his article entitled " Economic and Financial Mobilization."

I shall mention one more document; on 25th August, 1939, Funk wrote to Hitler:

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"Field-Marshal Goering told me that my Fuehrer yesterday evening approved the main points of the measures conceived by me for the financing of war, stabilization of prices, fixation of wages and the organization of obligatory donations; this news made me profoundly happy."
A long time before the treacherous attack of Germany against the USSR, Funk participated in the elaboration of plans for the spoliation of the riches of the Soviet Union.

Funk attached his collaborators to Rosenberg's ministry and to that predatory organization Economic Staff "Ost." Funk's agents participated also in the plunder of Czechoslovakia, Jugoslavia and other occupied countries.

Funk was the president of the "Continental Oil " company, created for the exploitation by the Germans of the crude oil wealth in the occupied Eastern territories, and especially the oil-fields of Grosny and Baku.

Funk was in full agreement with the predatory aims of the war launched by Germany against the USSR. He made a speech on 17th December, 1941, in. Prague, to the effect that the East is the future German colony. Funk participated at the conference held on 6th August, 1942, at Goering's office for the discussion of the most effective measures for the economic plunder of the occupied territories of the USSR, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, France, Norway and other countries.

At this conference, as well as the conference of the "Central Planning Board," Funk participated in the drafting of plans for the deportation to slavery of millions of people from the occupied territories.

Such are the fundamental stages in the criminal activities of that Hitlerite conspirator, the defendant Funk-Hitler's personal adviser on economic questions ever since 1931, Reich Minister and Plenipotentiary General for Economic Questions, President of the Reichsbank and Member of the Reich Defence Council during the period of the preparation and the realization of the criminal plan. (conspiracy).

The guilt of Funk, this active participant in fascist conspiracy, for the realization. of crimes against individuals, in war crimes and crimes against humanity, has been fully proved and he must bear the responsibility for the evil deeds perpetrated by him.


Since 1931 and until the end of the war, the defendant Baldur von Schirach was at the head of the Nazi Youth Movement.

After the publication on 1st December, 1936, of a decree concerning the Hitlerite youth, von Schirach was - in his capacity of the Reich Youth Leader - directly subordinated to Hitler.

In his deposition before the Court, the defendant Schirach, in his efforts to evade the responsibility for the education of German youth in the spirit of National Socialist ideas, made frequent references to the fact that the "Hitlerjugend" was a youth organization independent of the Nazi Party and the Hitlerite Government.

To defend himself, the defendant Schirach considered it both possible and relevant to refer to the great Goethe, whose words - "Youth itself educates young people" - were utilized by Schirach with open cynicism.

Goethe was, of course, right when he said that "youth itself educates young people." But he meant the healthy, normal joyful youth, and not youth corrupted with the obscurantism of the Hitlerites, so clearly described by Hitler's words. addressed to Rauschning:

"We shall educate a youth before which the whole world shall tremble, rough, exacting, cruel youth. That is what I want. Our youth must possess all these qualities. It must be pitiless before the sight of suffering. It must

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be without weakness or softness. I want to see a glint of the wild animal in its eye."
And the defendant Schirach instilled systematically the ideas of Hitlerism in the conscience of German youth and educated the German youth in the spirit of Hitler's wishes, modelling them after the image of the adult leaders of the Hitlerite gang.

During cross-examination, the defendant Schirach was finally forced to admit that the youth of Germany was brought up in the spirit of the National Socialist idea, that members of the SA, officers of the German armed forces and the SS participated in its education, and that intense preparation of the youth for war was being carried out in Germany. For this purpose special agreements were made between the Reich leaders of "Hitlerjugend " and the OKW, as represented by the defendant Keitel and the Reichsfuehrer Himmler, which provided for the education of youth in the spirit of aggressive militarism, and appropriate recruitment and the preparation of youth for the German armed forces and the units of the SS.

The part played by the defendant von Schirach and his participation in the common conspiracy, in war crimes and crimes against humanity, are characterized best of all by the behaviour of German youth brought up in the "Hitlerjugend" during the war.

The Soviet Prosecution has presented to the Tribunal under No. USSR 6, in conformity with Article 21 of the Charter, a report of the Extraordinary State Commission about the crimes of the Germans on the territory of Lvov.

This report records the declaration of the French citizen Ida Wasseaux about the inhuman execution by the members of the "Hitlerjugend" of young children, whom they used as targets for shooting practice.

In her written deposition of 16th May, 1946, and also in her answers to the questionnaire of counsel for the defendant Schirach, Ida Wasseaux has fully confirmed this declaration.

Conclusive testimony about the actions of the members of the "Hitlerjugend" within the cadre of the German armed forces was given by a German soldier prisoner of war, Hertom Knitel, himself a former member of the "Hitlerjugend" since 1938 on, who in 1942, at the age of 18, enlisted in the German Army.

Describing his participation in numerous crimes, Hertom Knitel declared:

"In the locality of Lishaisk, in June, 1943, our company set fire to a house with all the people in it.... All who tried to jump out of the house we shot down, excepting one old woman whom we did not shoot, as she became insane under our very eyes ......"
For all these crimes the defendant von Schirach bears full responsibility together with Hertom Knitel and thousands of others.

Schirach himself did not, of course, shoot, did not set on fire, but he did arm the German youth, morally corrupted it and prepared it for the realization of every atrocity.

But the activities of the "Hitlerjugend" during the war and of the defendant Schirach were not limited only to these crimes.

The "Hitlerjugend" actively participated in the preparation of the war of aggression by creating fifth columns in Poland and Yugoslavia; the official reports of the Polish and the Yugoslav Governments testify to this fact. The "Hitlerjugend" organization took an active part in the execution of all the measures undertaken by the Ministry for Occupied Eastern TerritoriesI and this is proved by the report of the defendant Rosenberg, presented to the Tribunal as Document 1039-PS; it also participated in the deportation for slavery from the occupied territories of children between the ages of io and 14, which fact is proved by a document presented to the Tribunal as 1031-PS.

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In his capacity of Reich Deputy and Gauleiter of Vienna, Schirach personally directed the eviction from Vienna of 6o,000 Jews who subsequently were exterminated in the concentration camps of Poland. The documents presented by the prosecution - weekly reports addressed to Schirach - prove the fact that he was informed of all the numerous crimes perpetrated by the German armed forces and the occupational authorities in the Eust, and, in particular, about the tragic fate of the tens of thousands of Jews deported from Vienna.

In 1940, the defendant Schirach sent a telegram to Bormann, in which he demanded the destruction from the air of one of the cultural towns of Great Britain, as a reprisal for the murder of Heidrich, hangman of Bohemia and Moravia.

This telegram is in itself a sufficiently vivid and convincing description of the moral aspect of von Schirach's character. Faithful to the Hitlerite clique, right until the end, aware of all its criminal deeds, in which he himself had actively participated, the defendant von Schirach is one of the most sinister figures of the third Reich.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal will adjourn now.

(The Tribunal adjourned until Tuesday, 30th July, at 1000 hours.)

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