The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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          Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression, Volume 6

                                        [Page 174]
                   TRANSLATION OF DOCUMENT 3469-PS
                          Nurnberg, 7 January 1946
I, Hans Fritzsche, at present a defendant before
International Military Tribunal, herewith declare and state
the following after having consulted my defense lawyer:

1. My name is Hans Fritzsche. I was born on 21 April 1900,
at Bochum, Westphalia. I attended the classical high school
[Humanistisches Gymnasium] in Halle/Saale, Breslau, and
Leipzig. Afterwards, I studied history, philosophy, and

2. I started my practical work in 1923 as editor of the
Prussian Yearbooks (Economic-Political Review) [Preussische
Jahrbuecher] [Wirtschaftspolitische Rundschau]. I held this
position for about one year. The publisher of this
periodical was Dr. Walther Schotte.

3. I did not belong to any party, after I had resigned in
1923 from the German National Peoples Party
[Deutschnationale Volkspartei] in which I had been a member
for hardly a half year. In the years 1923-1924, that means
before I joined the Telegraph Union International News
Agency Company [Telegrafen-Union Internationalen Nachrichten
G.m.b.H.], I did not write for other papers or periodicals.

My way from the so-called Hugenberg press to the Propaganda
Ministry was as follows:

4.   To my knowledge, the Alfred Hugenberg Enterprises
consisted mainly of the following enterprises or groups of
enterprises: Universal Film Corporation [Universum Film
Aktiengesellschaft (UFA) ]; Vera Publishing House
Incorporated [Vera Verlagsanstalt GmbH]; Deulig Film
Corporation [Deulig-Film A.-G.]; Telegraph-Union
International News Incorporated [Telegraphen-Union
Internationale Nachrichten GmbH]; (abbreviated "T.U." and
commonly called the Telegraph Union; after the Wolff
Telegraph Agency, the "T.U." was the most important news
agency in Germany); The Foreign Company [Auslands-GmbH];
Foreign Advertising Company [Auslands-Anzeigen-GmbH]; Ala-
Haasenstein & Vogler Company [ Ala-Haasenstein & Vogler
GmbH] Darlehens Mutual Newspaper Bank [Zeitungsbank Mutuum
Darlehens A-G] (for investment in and credit for newspapers;
this bank also exercised control over a great number of
daily newspapers); Provincial Press Service
[Wirtschaftsstelle der Provinzpresse] (Wipro) (For producing
printed correspondence and ready-made printed mats); West
End Publishing Company [Westend-Verlag GmbH]; German Picture
Company [Deutsche Lichtbildgesellschaft]. The Hugenberg
concern was by far

                                                  [Page 175]

the largest and most influential press concern in Germany.
Alfred Hugenberg was a member of the German National
Assembly and of the Reichstag from 1920 until after the
seizure of power in 1933. He was chairman of the executive
committee of the German National Peoples Party
[Deutschnationale Volkspartei] from 1928 until its
dissolution in 1933. He became Reich Minister of Economics
in the Papen government in 1932. He remained a member of the
Hitler cabinet from 30 January 1933 up to the complete
seizure of power in March 1933.

5. From 1924 until 1932 I was an editor with the Telegraph
Union. The Telegraph Union belonged to and was controlled by
the Alfred Hugenberg Enterprises. I worked there as chief
editor of foreign letters, a service of foreign articles for
German newspapers. Besides that, I wrote leading articles
almost daily for several domestic services of the same
publishing concern mostly dealing with the foreign political
questions, frequently writing against the Treaty of
Versailles. This treaty at this time was being discussed
constantly in Geneva and other cities. The newspapers and
periodicals which printed my articles belonged to all
parties reaching from the Centrum [Zentrum] and to the
National Socialist Party. Mostly, however, they belonged to
the so-called "Generalanzeigertyp", a middleclass, national
and moderate group of newspapers represented in almost all
greater German provincial cities.

6.   In the late summer of 1932, probably in August, the
director of the Telegraph Union, Otto Mejer (Korvetten
Kapitan a.D.), asked me whether I would like to take over
the management of the radio news service of the so-called
Wireless Service. Mejer had been asked by a member of the
Papen government -- whose name I do not know -- to release me
for this purpose, because the incumbent editor and chief,
Dr. Josef Raeuscher, was politically unbearable. After a
first examination I rejected this offer. Subsequently, Dr.
Raeuscher, whom I had known for quite some time and who was
already my predecessor as editor and chief for the foreign
letters with the Telegraph Union, paid me a visit. He
advised me to accept the assignment and promised to
introduce me for some few months into a field which was
entirely new to me. For my part, he asked me to help him to
get a position as a German correspondent abroad. Now I
accepted the offer, dissolved the contract with TU, with the
condition that I could return after one year. I signed a new
contract with the Reich Radio Corporation which managed the
Wireless Service (the Reich Radio Corporation was owned by
the Reich and was managed under the


supervision of a committee consisting of all parties). Dr.
Raeuscher signed a contract as Paris correspondent with the
democratic Berliner-Tageblatt which was owned by the Jewish
publishing house Mosse.

7. In September 1932 I began to make broadcasts to the
German people under the program called "Political Newspaper
Review" over the following stations: Deutschland Sender,
Stuttgart, Koenigsberg, Breslau, Koeln. My broadcasts were
quotations of the opinions of the newspapers of all parties
on current events. While I worked for the Wireless Service,
I wrote only infrequently articles for the Telegraph Union.

8. In September 1932, assisted in a friendly way by Dr.
Raeuscher, I took over my new office. I did not make a
single change in the editor's staff or the other kind of
personnel. Among the entire personnel of about 30 persons
there were about five Jews and Jewesses.

9. I was acquainted with Dr. Goebbels since 1928. Apparently
he had taken a liking to me, besides the fact that in my
press activities I had always treated the National
Socialists in a friendly way until 1931. Already before
1933, Goebbels, who was the editor of the "Attack"
[Angriff], a Nazi newspaper, had frequently made flattering
remarks about the form and content of my work, which I did
as contributor of many "national" newspapers and
periodicals, among which were also reactionary papers and

10. On the evening of 30 January 1933, the radio chief
Dressler-Andrees and his collaborator Sadila-Mantau
approached me upon request of the National Socialists, the
new government party. They declared that their superior, the
propaganda chief of the party, Dr. Goebbels, was still angry
at me on account of an essay under the title of "Potempa".
In this article I had taken publicly a sharp position
against Hitler, after Hitler had sent a telegram of sympathy
to several Nazis sentenced on account of political murder.
They said Goebbels was also still angry on account of my
position against the Nazis concerning an organizational
question, the explanation of which here would lead too far.
They added that Dr. Goebbels respected my public success
since the previous autumn on the radio, and that he would
like to keep me if I would comply with several conditions.

11.  I should dismiss immediately without notice the Jews
and also dismiss the remaining employees by 1 April 1933 in
order to replace all of them by party members. I refused the
first by re-

                                                  [Page 177]

ferring to contracts and to the fact that except for the
Jewish editor Frank, all Jews were
only technical auxiliary employees. Moreover, that personnel
contracts were not signed by me but by the personnel
division of the Reich Radio Corporation which was superior
to me. As a matter of fact I succeeded in that not a single
Jew was given notice. Nevertheless, during the following
three months they were looking for other positions because
the demand of the party was not kept a secret. A Jewish
secretary went to London, three of them found employment
with the publishing house Mosse, and Frank, through
Raeuscher's help, found work in Paris. All of them got their
salaries paid in full; several of them, for instance the
wife of Mr. Frank, thanked me for the protection against
this dismissal without notice. The dismissal of the other
employees I had likewise refused. However, I agreed to the
hiring of one National Socialist. This was Sadila-Mantau.
After this I was left undisturbed for about two months with
the exception of four to five assault-like
[ueberfallartigen] visits by SA Troops. They always asked to
give news through the radio which I prevented with some
trouble. From 13 January 1933 until April 1933 I gave
regularly radio broadcasts, at least once weekly. In my
radio speeches, I supported the coalition government, at
this time consisting of German Nationalists and National

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