The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 2000/03/14

THE PRESIDENT: Is he talking about 15th October, 1939?


THE PRESIDENT: Page 98, 10A?

DR. KRANZBUHLER: In the prosecution's Document Book, on
Pages 96 and 97.

THE PRESIDENT: Which book, 10?


THE PRESIDENT: Those are not right, those numbers. That
reference is not right.

DR. KRANZBUHLER: Pages 99 and 100, I am just told.

In the prosecution's Document Book there is only-a short
extract. The witness has the whole document in front of him.

THE PRESIDENT: Where is the extract?

DR. KRANZBUHLER: On Pages 99 and 100 in Document Book 10. It
is Exhibit GB 224.

Mr. President, another excerpt from the same document has
already been mentioned, and that is in the Document Book
Donitz III, on Pages 199 to 203; but I do not believe that
it is necessary to refer to it because the witness will only
read one or two sentences.

A. (Continuing.) Now, the last paragraph, "Conclusions,"
under (I), reads:

  "The manner in which economic warfare has been conducted
  until now, in accordance with prize regulations, does not
  meet with military demands for ruthless severity.
                                                  [Page 175]
  "A large part of enemy mercantile trade, including all
  exports in neutral ships, is not covered.
  The requirements of naval law, that neutral merchantmen
  be stopped and searched, can no longer be fulfilled, in
  view of the strength of aerial reconnaissance and U-boat
  counter-measures in the enemy's coastal approaches.
  Economic warfare according to prize regulations has,
  therefore, to be limited, and in the North Sea and the
  Baltic must be left to surface craft only. In the
  Atlantic the U-boats in enemy coastal waters will limit
  their activities to attacks without warning on convoys,
  troop transports, and all enemy merchantmen, armed or
  unarmed, and will conduct economic warfare according to
  the law governing prizes only in exceptional cases. The
  use of the Operational Air Force for economic warfare is
  not possible. Economic warfare is conducted within the
  framework of International Law. A possibility of
  controversy with neutral States is ruled out."

Then one more sentence:

  "If the Supreme War Command, for political reasons,
  should not be able at present to decide to carry on the
  economic war in the most vigorous form possible by having
  recourse to a siege, it will be possible to increase the
  effectiveness of the policy of throttling enemy trade by
  a ruthless increase in the use of mines and by air
  attacks on enemy port installations. One cannot, however,
  expect a decisive result from the economic war in its
  present form."

Q. The immediate result of that memorandum and of your
report to the Fuehrer was the order of 17th October?

A. Yes, and that provided first that all enemy merchantmen
could be torpedoed, and secondly, as a severer measure, that
passenger ships in convoys could be torpedoed a short time
after an announcement to that effect had been made.

That was all done in connection with the intensification,
measure for measure, which we had brought about in answer to
individual acts of the enemy.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Kranzbuehler, that long passage that the
defendant has just read, if it has not been put in evidence
yet, must be offered in evidence by you. I understand it is
not in evidence at present.

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: My Lord, I can help, I shall be
using this document, and I shall put it in.

THE PRESIDENT: Has it been offered in evidence?

SIR DAVID MAXWELL FYFE: Only part of it, not the part that
the defendant has referred to. But, in view of that, I shall
refer to it later on.



Q. Admiral, you mentioned that before 1935 certain
preparations were taken for the construction of a German
submarine weapon. Did Admiral Donitz participate in any way
in these preparations?

A. In no way whatsoever. As was said before, he was abroad
during the last year; but even before that he had nothing to
do with it.

Q. You have reported about your dismissal as Commander-in-
Chief of the Navy. Would you please tell me how it came
about that Admiral Donitz became your successor?

A. The Fuehrer had ordered that I propose two admirals as
successors. I suggested in writing first, as the elder -

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Kranzbuhler, how does this arise? I mean,
what relevancy has it to anything we have to decide as to
how Admiral Donitz became head of the Navy?

DR. KRANZBUHLER: This has significance, Mr. President, in
view of the prosecution's assertion that Admiral Donitz
became the successor of Admiral Raeder on the basis of
political relations or services rendered.

                                                  [Page 176]



Q. Please continue, Admiral.

A. I will be very brief. I suggested, first, Admiral Karls,
who was the senior and had vast knowledge of the entire
conduct of naval policy. As, however, the Fuehrer made it
clear that he now was placing U-boat warfare in the
foreground, I suggested Admiral Donitz, who was the greatest
authority in that field. Political considerations of any
kind were not mentioned at all it was to be purely an
official, technical appointment.

DR. KIRANZBUHLER: I have no more questions.

DR. NELTE (Counsel for the defendant Keitel): Mr. President,
the Tribunal through its letter of 26th March, has consented
that an affidavit be submitted by the defendant Raeder for
defendant Keitel, provided the prosecution has an
opportunity to question Admiral Raeder on his statements in

I have sent the affidavit to the prosecution, and the
prosecution has raised no objection. I ask to be permitted
to submit this affidavit, which is concerned with the
functions and position of the defendant Keitel as Chief of
the OKW, as Exhibit 19, after Admiral Raeder has confirmed
that he signed it and that he agrees to it being submitted.


Q. Admiral, you are acquainted with the questions which I
put to you and which after a conference with your counsel,
you answered and signed on 19th March?

A. That is about the position of Field Marshal Keitel in the

Q. Yes.

A. I am quite familiar with that.

DR. NELTE: Then, may I submit this affidavit? The
prosecution has a copy of it.

I have a few more questions for Admiral Raeder, the answers
to which can be greatly simplified with the permission of
the Tribunal. These are the same questions which on 9th May,
a week ago, I put to Admiral Donitz and which refer to the
assertion made by the witness Dr. Gisevius about Keitel's
tremendous influence and the circle of silence which Keitel
drew around Hitler. I merely want to ask the witness Admiral
Raeder, with the permission of the Tribunal, whether he can
confirm as correct for the period before 1943 as well - that
is, for the period during which Raeder was Commander-in-
Chief of the Navy - the answers to my questions given by
Grand Admiral Donitz in Raeder's presence. I ask for the
decision of the Tribunal whether I may put this general
question in order to save time.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, certainly.


Q. You heard what I said, and I ask you, can you confirm the
answers given by Admiral Donitz to my questions on 9th May
for the period before 1943 as well?

A. Yes, that I can do.

Q. Now, I have one final question. During your testimony
Document L-79, the "Little Schmundt" file, was discussed.
You objected to this document as inaccurate and not of
probative value?

A. Yes.

Q. Dr. Siemers then quoted a part of that document which the
prosecution, at the time when it submitted the document, had
not read. In that part of the document there is mention of a
research staff in the OKW.

A. Yes.

Q. I ask you now to tell me whether such a research staff in
the OKW was ever actually created.

A. Not to my knowledge. The work was done by the Armed
Forces Operations Staff in which there were officers
representing all three branches of the Armed Forces.

                                                  [Page 177]

Q. So there was no change in the scope of tasks and in the
division of authority?

A. No, definitely not.

Q. That also concerns the question of working out strategic
and operational matters between the OKW and the Armed Forces
Operations Staff on one hand and the General Staffs of the
Armed Forces Branches, including the Naval Operations Staff,
on the other hand?

A. As far as the Naval Operations Staff is concerned, yes,
there was no change.

Q. And as far as the other branches of the Armed Forces are

A. That I cannot say. I do not know about that.

DR. NELTE: Thank you. I have no further questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Nelte, is the affidavit that you referred
to contained in your document book?

DR. NELTE: No, not yet. It will be number 19.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. Will you have translations supplied to
the Tribunal?


BY DR. LATERNSER (Counsel for the General Staff and OKW):

Q. Admiral, you are the senior member of the group of the
General Staff and OKW, and you belonged to this so-called
group for the longest time?

A. Yes.

Q. In what manner did you become a member?

A. I was appointed Chief of the Navy Command by Reich
President Field Marshal von Hindenburg. I did not join that
group by doing so; rather I became Chief of the Navy. One
did not know of any such group.

Q. As to joining and remaining in this group, the
prosecution maintains that this was voluntary. Was there any
possibility at all for military leaders to apply for any
vacant posts?

A. No, there was nothing of the sort.

Q. In other words, military accomplishments were the
decisive factor?

A. It was a military order. There was no question of its
being voluntary.

Q. Did you know the various members of the group at the time
when you belonged to it?

A. No, I certainly did not know all individuals from the
other branches. Of course, I knew a large number.

Q. Within the purely military leadership was there ever a
conference about a plan which had as its purpose the
launching of aggressive wars?

A. No, there was never such a conference. It has frequently
been mentioned here how the various enterprises came about
the political decision of the Fuehrer, a directive issued by
him, and then the working out of the final order.

Q. Admiral, I do not mean now by this question the meetings
which took place under Hitler's leadership. I mean meetings
of purely military officers.

A. Do you mean within the various branches of the armed

Q. Yes, within the various branches.

A. Of course, within the Naval Operations Staff there were
meetings about various questions, but not about aggressive

Q. My question referred only to that.

The prosecution asserts, furthermore, that this indicted
group was first established by the National Socialist
regime. Is that correct?

A. In no way whatsoever. There was no group in existence,
but the organization was such as has frequently been

Q. And such as has always existed in all armies of the

A. Yes, as has always existed.

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