The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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FRIDAY, 24th MAY, 1946

THE PRESIDENT: Is counsel for the defendant Bormann present?

DR. BERGOLD (Counsel for defendant Bormann): Yes.

THE PRESIDENT: Would it be convenient to you to present your
documents on Tuesday at 10 o'clock?

DR. BERGOLD: Yes; agreed.

THE PRESIDENT: Would it be convenient to the prosecution?


THE PRESIDENT: Quite convenient, would it

DR. BERGOLD: Yes, indeed.



DR. SAUTER (counsel for defendant von Schirach): Your
Honours, we left off yesterday on Document TS-1948; that, as
you will recall, is a memorandum by a certain Dr. Fischer
about a telephone conversation he had held with an official
of the Secret State Police, Standartenfuehrer Huber, from
Vienna, and which referred to forced labour of Jewish
youths. Special mention is made of the employment of Jews in
the removal of ruined synagogues. In connection with this
memorandum, I should like to put just one more question to
the defendant Schirach.


Q. When were these synagogues destroyed in Vienna? Was it in
your time and on your responsibility, or at another time?

A. The synagogues in Vienna were destroyed two years before
I assumed office in Vienna.

Q. Witness, I now proceed to the chapter on anti-Semitism.
According to your admission yesterday, you were anti-Semitic
from your earliest years. I should like to know what your
attitude was when you joined the Party, and when you became
an official in the Party, towards a practical solution of
the Jewish problem?

A. According to my opinion - in 1924-1925 - Jews were to be
entirely excluded from the Civil Services. Their influence
in economic life was to be limited. I believed that Jewish
influence in cultural life should be repressed. But for
artists of the rank of, for instance, Max Reinhardt, I still
envisaged the possibility of a free participation in this
cultural life. That, I believe, exactly reflects the opinion
which I and my comrades held on the solution of the "Jewish
Problem" in 1924-1925, and in the following years.

Later, when I was leading the High School Youth Movement, I
put forward the demand for the so-called "Numerus Clausus."
It was my wish that the Jews should only be allowed to study
on a proportional basis, according to their percentage
numbers in relation to the total population of the Reich.

                                                  [Page 361]

I believe one can realize from this demand for the "Numerus
Clausus," known to the entire generation of students of that
period, that I did not believe in a total exclusion of the
Jews from artistic, economic and scientific activities.

Q. Witness, I have submitted a document, No. 136 in the
Schirach Document Book, which contains statements by an
official of the Reich Youth Leadership about the treatment
of Jewish youth as compared to Christian youth. Do you know
what attitude the Reich Youth Leadership had adopted at that
time towards the Jewish youth?

A. I believe that we are dealing with the Decree for the
year 1936.

Q. Autumn, 1936?

A. Autumn, 1936. According to that, Jewish youth
organizations were to exist under the official supervision
of the Youth Leader of the German Reich, who controlled all
the youth of Germany, and Jewish youth would be able to
carry out their own youth education autonomously.

Q. It says in that Decree, inter alia, to quote one sentence
only from Document 136 of the Schirach Document Book:

  "Today in its youth, Judaism already assumes that special
  isolated position, free within its own boundaries, which
  at some future date, Judaism will occupy within the
  German State and in the economy of Germany and which it
  has already occupied to a great extent."

Witness, at about the same time, or shortly before then, the
so-called Nuremberg Laws had been promulgated, those laws
which we have frequently heard mentioned here.

Did you participate in the drafting of these laws, and how
did you personally judge these laws?

A. I had no part in the drafting of these laws. In my room
at the Hotel "Deutscher Hof," here in Nuremberg, to my
surprise, I received a notice stating that there would be a
Reichstag meeting on the next day, and that it would take
place in Nuremberg. At that meeting, at which I was present,
the Nuremberg Laws were promulgated. I do not know to this
day how they were drafted. I assume that Hitler himself
determined their contents. I can tell you no more about

Q. Can you state on your oath, and with a clear conscience,
that before these laws were published you had not known of
the plan for such laws, although you had been leader of the
Reich Youth Movement and Reichsleiter?

A. Yes.

Q. After these laws had been promulgated in Nuremberg, how
did you personally envisage the further development of the
Jewish problem?

A. I must say, first of all, that we had, as a matter of
fact, not expected these laws at all. I believe that the
entire youth of the country at that time considered the
Jewish problem as solved, since in 1935 there could be no
question of any Jewish influence. After these laws were
published, we were of the opinion that now, definitely, the
last word had been spoken on the Jewish problem.

Q. Briefly, witness, you are accused of having incited and
influenced the youth of the country. I therefore ask you, as
Reich Youth Leader, did you incite youth to anti-Semitic
excesses, or, particularly at meetings of the Hitler Youth
Movement, make any inflammatory anti-Semitic speeches?

A. I have not made any inflammatory anti-Semitic speeches,
since I attempted, both as Youth Leader and Youth Educator,
not to add fuel to the fire, for neither in my books nor in
my speeches - with the exception of one speech in Vienna, to
which I shall refer later on, and which was not made at the
time when I was Reich Youth Leader - have I made any
inflammatory statements of an anti-Semitic nature.

I will not make myself ridiculous by stating here that I was
not an anti-Semite - I was - although I never spoke myself
to the youth in that role.

Q. The Reich Youth Leadership published an official monthly
entitled "Will and Power, Leadership Publication of the
National Socialist Youth." Excerpts

                                                  [Page 362]

from this official publication have previously been
submitted to the Tribunal in the Document Book.

Now I would be interested to know whether it is true that
certain Party officials repeatedly demanded from you that
you publish a special anti-Semitic issue of this official
youth Leadership Publication in order to show the youth of
the country the path to follow in the future, and what was
your attitude with regard to that demand?

A. It is true that the Reich Minister for Propaganda
repeatedly demanded of my editor-in-chief that such an
anti-Semitic issue should be published. On receiving the
report of the editor-in-chief, I invariably refused to
comply with this request. I believe that the editor-in-chief
has already signed a sworn affidavit to that effect.

Witness, the question of anti-Semitism would also include
your attitude to Der Sturmer, the paper issued by your
co-defendant, Streicher. Did you distribute this
anti-Semitic paper Der Sturmer within your youth
organization, and did you, in any way, further its

A. Der Sturmer was not distributed within the Hitler Youth
Organization. I believe that with the sole exception of
those of our young people who lived in this Gau -

Q. Gau Franken?

A. Yes, Gau Franken - that the rest of the German Youth
Organization never read Der Sturmer at all. The paper was
definitely rejected by all the youth leaders - both boys and
girls - in my organization.

Q. Then, witness, I must point out to you that the
prosecution has accused you of having placed, on one
occasion, a slogan at the disposal of this paper, this
anti-Jewish paper Der Sturmer. Do you know about it, and
what have you got to say on the matter?

A. I was always in close collaboration with the Press, in
fact, I came from the Press myself. In my Press office, as
Reich Youth Leader, I gave definite instructions that all
requests from Gau papers for a slogan, or something else of
the kind, from me should be granted on principle. Therefore,
whenever a Gau paper celebrated a jubilee, perhaps the tenth
or twentieth anniversary of its existence, and published a
special issue, then the experts in my office would run up a
draft, and this draft, together with the considerable volume
of evening mail presented to me for my signature, would be
submitted to me for final elaboration. It is, therefore,
quite possible that I may have signed that slogan for Der
Sturmer, which, of course, was the paper of the local Gau.
Otherwise I have no recollection of the episode.

Q. Consequently, you cannot remember whether you drafted
that short slogan yourself, or whether it was drafted by one
of your experts and presented to you for signature?

A. I definitely believe that I did not draft it myself,
because short slogans, as already stated, were always
submitted to me. I wrote my newspaper articles myself, but
never slogans of this description.

Q. Witness, since we have just mentioned the name of
Streicher, I would remind you of a very ugly picture book
which was submitted here by the prosecution. Was that
picture book distributed among the youth with your consent,
or do you know anything else about it?

A. Of course this book was not distributed among the young
people. It is quite out of the question that an office of
the "HJ" (Hitler Jugend) should have transmitted that book
to the Youth Organization. Besides, the picture books of the
Sturmer Publishing Firm are unknown to me. I am, of course,
not competent to speak on education in the schools, but I
should also like to say on behalf of education in the
schools, that I do not believe this picture book was ever
introduced into any school outside of this Gau. At any rate,
that book and similar writings of the Sturmer Publishing
Firm were not, on principle, distributed among the young
people and the youth organizations. What I have already said

                                                  [Page 363]

judging Der Sturmer also holds good for these books, namely,
that the Leadership Corps of the Hitler Youth categorically
rejected writings of this description.

Q. Witness, you have also experienced how the anti-Semitic
question actually developed, and how it eventually resulted
in the infamous Jewish pogroms of November, 1938. Did you
yourself, in any way, participate in these Jewish pogroms of
November, 1938?

A. I personally did not participate in any way, but I did
participate in the Munich session -

Q. Which session?

A. The session which was traditionally held on 9th November
of each year in memory of those who had fallen on 9th
November, 1923. I did not take part in all the discussions
of that day. But I do remember a speech by Goebbels in
connection with the murder of Herr von Rath. That speech was
definitely of an inflammatory nature, and one was free to
assume from this speech that Goebbels intended to start some
act of violence. He is alleged - but that I only discovered
later - to have given detailed instructions for this action
directly from his hotel in Munich to the Reich Propaganda
Ministry. I was present at the Munich session, as was my
colleague, Lauterbacher, who was also my chief-of-staff, and
we both rejected the action. The "HJ," as the largest
National Socialist Organization, was not employed at all in
the Jewish pogroms of 9th, l0th and 11th November, 1938. I
remember one incident where a youth leader, without
referring to my Berlin office, and carried away by some
local propaganda, took part in a demonstration, and was
later called to account by me for doing so. After the 10th
November, I was again in Munich for a few days and visited,
inter alia, a few of the destroyed business houses and
villas. It made a terrible impression on me at the time, and
under that impression I instructed the entire Youth
Leadership, the Regional Leaders - if I remember rightly -
in other words, all the highest responsible Youth Leaders,
to come to Berlin, and there, in an address to these Youth
Leaders, I described the incidents of 9th and l0th November
as a disgrace to our culture. I also referred to them as
criminal actions. I believe that all the colleagues present
on that occasion will clearly remember how agitated I was
and that I told them that my organization, both now and in
the future, would never have anything to do with acts of
this sort.

Q. You previously mentioned one individual case where an
"HJ" leader, subordinate to you, participated in some act of
violence. Did you know of other cases in November, 1938, and
after, where units of the "HJ" participated, or were alleged
to have participated in the Jewish pogroms?

A. No, I know of no other cases. The only thing I did hear
was that here and there individual lads, or groups of
youths, were called out into the streets by local
authorities who were not of the "HJ." In the majority of
cases these lads were promptly sent home again by the Youth
Leaders. The organization was never employed, and I attach
great importance to the fact that the Youth Organization,
which included more members than the Party itself, was never
involved in these incidents.

Q. Witness, you saw at least, from the incidents in
November, 1938, that developments in Germany were taking a
different course to the one you had expected, if we are to
judge by your evidence up to now. How did you, after
November, 1938, envisage the further solution of the Jewish

A. After the events of 1938, I realised that Jewry's one
chance lay in a State supported emigration for, in view of
Goebbel's temper, it seemed probable to me that, overnight,
similar actions could arise from time to time, and under
such conditions of complete legal insecurity, I could not
see how the Jews could continue living in Germany. That is
one of the reasons why Hitler's idea of a closed Jewish
settlement in the Polish Government General, of which he
told me at his Headquarters in 1940, seemed feasible. I
thought that the Jews would be better cared for in a closed
settlement in Poland than in Germany or Austria, where they

                                                  [Page 364]

would remain exposed to the whims of the Propaganda
Minister, who was the mainstay of anti-Semitism in Germany.

Q. Is it true that you yourself, whenever you had a chance
of approaching Hitler, gave him your own positive
suggestions for settling the Jews in some neutral country,
under humane conditions?

A. No, that is not true.

Q. Well?

A. I should like to elucidate this matter. I mentioned
yesterday how I had reported to Hitler and how he told me
that the Viennese Jews would be sent to the Government
General. Before that, I had never thought of an emigration
of the Jews from Austria and Germany for resettlement in the
Government General. I had only thought of a Jewish
emigration to countries where the Jews wanted to go. But
Hitler's plan, as it then existed - and I believe that at
that time the idea of exterminating the Jews had not yet
entered his mind - this plan of resettlement sounded
perfectly reasonable to me reasonable at that time.

Q. But I believe that in 1942 you are supposed to have
tried, through the kind offices of your friend, Dr. Colin
Ross, to suggest to Hitler that the Jews from Hungary and
the Balkan States be allowed to emigrate to some neutral
country, taking their goods and chattels with them.

A. That was at a later date. I no longer exactly remember
when, but in any case, it was after the occupation of
Hungary. Among the innumerable suggestions which I made to
the Fuehrer and to the Minister for Foreign Affairs through
Colin Ross, was one to the effect that the entire Jewish
population of Hungary be transferred to some neutral
country. If the witness, Steengracht, has stated here that
this idea had been discussed in the Ministry for Foreign
Affairs, and that it had emanated from the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs, then he probably spoke in perfectly good
faith. The idea originated in discussions held between Colin
Ross and myself, and Ross then put it down in the form of a
memorandum. But - and this is specially important - it was
reported verbally to the Reich Minister for Foreign Affairs,
who, in turn, informed Colin Ross, on the occasion of a
further visit, that the Fuehrer had definitely turned the
suggestion down.

Q. The emigration to a neutral country abroad?

A. Yes, to a neutral country abroad.

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