The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Q. Witness, what was your position with Sauckel?

A. I was personal adviser to the General Plenipotentiary for
the Employment of Labour.

Q. When did you assume that position?

A. One year after the General Plenipotentiary for the
Employment of Labour had assumed office; that was on 19th
April, 1943.

Q. Was the witness Timm there when you came?

A. Yes.

Q. The witness Hildebrandt?

A. Yes.

Q. What orders did you receive when you came?

A. The General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour
did not give any special personal directives because his
general principles could be clearly seen in his decrees and
programmes, and I only started work one year later.

Q. Before that, had you been in the Labour Ministry?

A. Yes, I had been connected with that type of work since
1926; and for the last eight years I was the personal
assistant of the State Secretary, Dr. Syrup, in the Reich
Labour Ministry.

Q. Was it a considerable change when you came to Sauckel?

A. No.

Q. What did your colleagues in the office tell you about all
the work and Sauckel's attitude to the work?

A. The work, as such, was carried out according to
principles and decrees, which were not essentially different
from previous ones. In practice of course, they were much
more far-reaching than anything previous.

Q. Did you work very closely with Sauckel in your field? You
were his personal assistant.

A. As far as this was necessary for carrying out the task of
the General Plenipotentiary for the war effort. Sauckel was
not only General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of
Labour, but at the same time he had remained governor and
Gauleiter in Thuringia. Besides that, during the last year
and a half of his activity he was very much occupied with
the development of an underground factory in Kahla, in
Thuringia. Therefore -

Q. We will come back to that later.

                                                  [Page 248]

A. He could be in Berlin only from time to time, at the most
one day a week and often only half a day.

Q. And what was your task as his personal assistant?

A. We had to receive incoming mail, sort out what had to be
reported and pass on the rest to the competent departments.
We also had to submit newly arrived drafts to the

Q. Who called staff conferences? Do you know that?

A. That was generally done by the office.

Q. You always attended these conferences?

A. Yes, from the time I first came into the office.

Q. Did you participate in conferences to which individual
members returned
from so-called inspection trips and made their reports?

A. Later that no longer happened or only very seldom. It was
only in the beginning.

Q. That you were present, or that inspection trips took

A. No, that reports were made.

Q. There were fewer reports later?

A. Yes.

Q. What was the reason for that?

A. I do not know the reason.

Q. During your term of office, did you learn of anything
particularly shocking as regards irregularities in Germany?
We will include everything: transports to Germany, transit
camps, the workshops themselves, the camps and the

A. I myself found out about some irregularities on the
occasion of inspection trips which I made on orders, but
these were at once discussed with the competent offices and
steps taken to put a stop to them.

Q. Sauckel had to work with a number of offices. Was there
any special
opposition to overcome here?

A. With the exception of two cases, no.

Q. What cases were these?

A. One was the Party Chancellery, and the other was the
Reichsfuehrer SS and Chief of the Secret State Police.

Q. Do you know of specific instances in the case of the
Reichsfuehrer SS?

A. The general treatment of foreign workers, particularly of
those coming
from the East, so far as it was determined by the
Reichsfuehrer SS and the principles of the Reichsfuehrer SS,
was contrary to the attitude of the General Plenipotentiary
for the Employment of Labour. The Reichsfuehrer SS was not
inclined to meet the far-reaching, positive demands of the
General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour. The
same was true, in other fields, of the head of the Party

Q. What fields were these?

A. For example, that of social insurance. In this case, the
Party Chancellery was of the opinion that equality with
German workers was not justified on either practical or
political grounds. Nor as high a rate of pay.

Q. And what did Sauckel say to that?

A. He tried, again and again, to adjust all these matters to
his principles. In
some things he was quite unsuccessful, and in others he was
successful only after great efforts. I want to remind you of
the equal status given to the Eastern workers which, to all
practical purposes, was only carried out in March, 1945, by
a decree.

Q. Did you receive from the Gauleiter who were appointed
deputies for the Employment of Labour any special reports,
or did you speak to the Gauleiter?

A. There was a directive that on inspection trips the
competent Gauleiter of the district visited had to be called
on so that any questions arising could be discussed with

Q. Did you take part in meetings of the Central Planning

A. I went to one single meeting of the Central Planning
Board with the General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of

                                                  [Page 249]

Q. Witness, .you have just mentioned March, 1945, as the
date when the Eastern workers were given equality with the
rest of the workers. Are you not mistaken? Was it not 1944?
I will show you the decree.

A. As far as I remember, it was March, 1945.

DR. SERVATIUS: Mr. President, I will have it shown to the
witness in a moment; we are looking for it.


Q. What was the relationship between Speer and Sauckel?

A. Apparently the appointment of the General Plenipotentiary
for the Employment of Labour was made in accordance with a
suggestion which Minister Speer had made to the Fuehrer.

DR. SERVATIUS: I refer to Document 58, in Document Book 2,
Page 167 of the German text, and Page 156 of the English
text. That is the decree concerning the conditions of
employment of Eastern workers, of 25th March, 1944, and I
read paragraph 2:

  "Remuneration for work.
  The same wage and salary conditions apply for Eastern
  workers as for other foreign workers. Eastern workers are
  paid wages only for work they actually do."

THE PRESIDENT: How did the wages compare with the wages of
the German workers?

THE WITNESS: It was a fundamental rule that they must be
based on the German wages for the same type of work, in
order to avoid additional profits for the industries which
used Eastern workers.


Q. Do you remember a conference at which Goebbels stated his
opinions to Sauckel as regards the labour policy in respect
of social questions and questions of wages.

A. Yes.

Q. Can you describe it to us?

A. I myself did not take part in that conference. I only
knew about it from the description given by my colleague,
Dr. Hildebrandt, who was present at the meeting with
Gauleiter Sauckel.

It was the first discussion between the two gentlemen after
Reich Minister Goebbels had become Reich Plenipotentiary for
the total war effort. At this conference, Minister Speer was
also present, and in the course of the conference Minister
Dr. Goebbels reproached the General Plenipotentiary for the
Employment of Labour with the fact that his previous
measures -

THE PRESIDENT: He is now telling us, is he not, what
Hildebrandt told him?


THE PRESIDENT: Well, Hildebrandt has been in the witness box
and he has not been asked about it.

DR. SERVATIUS: There has been confusion of the two
witnesses. They arrived only a short time ago. I ask
permission for this witness to say what Hildebrandt told
him. It can be explained by the fact that the witness was
only here for a very short time.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Servatius, the Tribunal does not think
that you ought to be allowed to ask him that question.


Q. Were there any difficulties with Speer?

A. Not at the beginning. In the course of years,
difficulties arose because of the fundamentally different
ideas of the two men.

                                                  [Page 250]

THE PRESIDENT (Interposing): We have had the relationships
between Sauckel and Speer gone into elaborately.

DR. SERVATIUS: Yes. I will withdraw that question.


Q. What did the offices have to do with the assignment of
concentration camp prisoners? Did they deal with them?

A. No.

Q. Did you not receive reports about the fact that manpower
disappeared from other industries, and in this way there had
to be recourse to concentration camp workers?

A. No reports were received about that.

Q. Are you aware that concentration camp workers were
assigned in large numbers for work?

A. It was the general practice of the police to put
prisoners to work.

Q. You did not receive any reports about that, did you?

A. No. An effort was made to gain influence to the extent of
having reports sent to the offices of the labour
administration on the employment of concentration camp
prisoners so that they could be considered in the general
planning of the employment of labour.

But these reports were not received by the labour offices.

Q. Then I have only a few more questions concerning the
control offices and other control agencies which had been
established in order to investigate conditions among the
workers in Germany. Do you know how far foreign workers
themselves were included in that control system? I am
thinking of the office of Ambassador Scapini. How did this
office work? Did you hear anything about it?

A. I know nothing detailed about the office of Scapini; I
know of its existence, but to the best of my knowledge,
Scapini's office was chiefly occupied with the welfare of
French prisoners of war, rather than with the welfare of
Italian civilian workers, because for the latter a special
office existed under M. Bruneton. But generally the foreign
workers were represented in the German Labour Front.
So-called Reich liaison offices were set up everywhere from
the central office via the Gaue all the way down to the
small districts, and from time to time they employed several
people who visited the camps, listened to complaints and
negotiated with the offices of the German Labour Front or
with other offices of the Labour administration.

Those were German employees that you mentioned?

A. No; they were foreign employees from countries abroad, in
fact from almost every State.

Q. In the factories themselves, did the workmen have any
representatives who had contact as liaison men with the
supervisory offices of the German Labour Front?

A. Not to my knowledge.

Q. For the Eastern workers, there was also a control office.
Do you know that office?

A. In Rosenberg's offices there was a special one for that

Q. How did that office work? Did you hear anything about it?

A. Yes. It had regular contact with the technically
competent offices of the labour administration.

Q. And whom had this office to contact if it had complaints?
The Labour Front, Sauckel's office, or the Ministry of
Labour? To whom did they have to go?

A. That depended on the nature of the irregularities or
complaints which were made.

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