The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Third Day: Thursday, 22st November, 1945
(Part 6 of 8)

[MAJOR WALLIS continues]

exist until its dissolution after the collapse and unconditional surrender of Germany in 1945.

The disagreements and intrigues within the Party between Hitler's followers and those who opposed him were finally resolved on 29 July 1921, when Hitler became "First Chairman" and was invested with extraordinary powers. Hitler immediately reorganized the Party and imposed upon it the Führerprinzip--the leadership principle--of which you will hear more later. Thereafter Hitler, the Führer, determined all questions and made all decisions for the Party.

The main objectives of the Party, which are fastened upon the defendants and their co-conspirators by reason of their membership in, or knowing adherence to the Party, were openly and notoriously avowed. They were set out in the Party program of 1920, were publicized in Mein Kampf and in Nazi literature generally, and were obvious from the continuous pattern of public action of the Party from the date of its founding.

Now two consequences, of importance in the Trial of this case, derive from the fact that the major objectives of the Party were publicly and repeatedly proclaimed:

First, the Court may take judicial notice of them.

Second, the defendants and their co-conspirators cannot be heard to deny them or to assert that they were ignorant of them.

The Prosecution offers proof of the major objectives of the Party-and hence of the objectives of the conspiracy--only to refresh or implement judicial recollection. The main objectives were:

First, to overthrow the Treaty of Versailles and its restrictions on military armament and activity in Germany;

Second, to acquire territories lost by Germany in World War I;

Third, to acquire other territories inhabited by so-called "racial Germans";


Fourth, to acquire still further territories said to be needed as living space by the racial Germans so incorporated--all at the expense of neighboring and other countries.

In speaking of the first aim, Hitler made an admission which applied equally

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to the other aims, namely, that he had stated and written a thousand times or more that he demanded the abolition of the Versailles Treaty.

These aims are fully documented in the evidence offered by the prosecution on this phase of the case, and it is not my purpose at this time to recite to the Court numerous declarations made by the defendants and others with respect to these aims.

Moreover, these conspirators again and again publicly announced to the still unbelieving world that they proposed to accomplish these objectives by any means found opportune, including illegal means and resort to threat of force, force, and aggressive war. The use of force was distinctly sanctioned, in fact guaranteed, by official statements and directives of the conspirators which made activism and aggressiveness a political quality obligatory for Party members.

As Hitler stated in "Mein Kampf":

"What we needed and still need are not a hundred or two hundred reckless conspirators, but a hundred thousand and a second hundred thousand fighters for our philosophy of life."
In 1929 Hitler stated:
"We confess further that we will tear anyone to pieces who would dare hinder us in this undertaking. Our rights will be protected only when the German Reich is again supported by the point of the German dagger."
Hitler, in 1934, in addressing the Party Congress at Nuremburg, stated the duties of Party members in the following terms:
"Only a part of the people will consist of really active fighters. It is they who were fighters of the National Socialist revolution. Of them, more is demanded than of the millions among the rest of the population. For them it is not sufficient to confess, 'I believe,' but to swear, 'I fight.'"
In proof of the fact that the Party was committed to the use of any means, whether or not legal or honourable, it is only necessary to remind the Court that the Party virtually opened its public career by staging a revolution-the Munich Putsch of 1923.

Now let us consider for a moment the doctrinal techniques of the Common Plan or Conspiracy which are alleged in the Indictment.

To incite others to join in the Common Plan or Conspiracy and as a means of securing for the Nazi conspirators the highest degree of control over the German community, they disseminated and exploited certain doctrines.

The first of these was the "master race" doctrine - that persons of so-called German blood were a master race. This doctrine of racial supremacy was incorporated as Point 4 in the Party Programme, which provided:

"Only a member of the race can be a citizen. A member of the race can only be one who is of German blood without consideration of confession. Consequently, no Jew can be a member of the race."
They outlined this master race doctrine as a new religion- the faith of the blood - superseding in individual allegiance all other religions and institutions. The defendant Rosenberg and the defendant Streicher were particularly prominent in disseminating this doctrine. Much of the evidence to be offered in this case will illustrate the Nazi conspirators' continued espousal and exploitation of this master race doctrine.

This doctrine had an eliminatory purpose; call anything "non- German" or Jewish, and you have a clear right, indeed a duty, to cast it out. In fact purges did not stop at so- called racial lines, but went far beyond.

The second important doctrine, which permeates the entire conspiracy and is one of the important links in establishing the guilt of each of these defendants, is the doctrine or concept of the "Fuehrerprinzip" or leadership principle.

This doctrine permeated the Nazi Party and all its formations and allied organisations and eventually permeated the Nazi State and all institutions, and is of such

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importance that I would like to dwell upon it for a few moments and attempt to explain the concepts which it embraces.

The "Fuehrerprinzip" embodies two major political concepts:

1. Authoritarianism.
2. Totalitarianism.

Authoritarianism implies the following: All authority is concentrated at the top and is vested in one person only, the Fuehrer. It further implies that the Fuehrer is infallible as well as omnipotent. The Party Manual states:

"Under the Commandments of the National Socialists:- The Fuehrer is always right."
Also, there are no legal or political limits to the authority of the Fuehrer. Whatevery [sic] authority is wielded by others is derived from the authority of the Fuehrer. Moreover, within the sphere of jurisdiction allotted to him, each appointee of the Fuehrer manipulates his power in equally unrestricted fashion, subordinate only to the command of those above him. Each appointee owes unconditional obedience to the Fuehrer and to the superior Party leaders in the hierarchy.

Each political leader was sworn in yearly. According to the Party Manual, which will be introduced in evidence, the wording of the oath was as follows:

"I pledge eternal allegiance to Adolf Hitler. I pledge unconditional obedience to him and the fuehrers appointed by him."
The Party Manual also provides that:
"The political leader is inseparably tied to the ideology and the Organisation of the N.S.D.A.P. His oath only ends with his death or with his expulsion from the National Socialist Community."
As the defendant Hans Frank stated in one of his publications:
"Leadership principle in the administration means: always to replace decision by majority, by decision on the part of a specific person with clear jurisdiction and with sole responsibility to those above, and to entrust to his authority the realisation of the decision to those below."
And finally the concept of Authoritarianism contained in the "Fuehrerprinzip" implies: The authority-of the Fuehrer extends into all spheres of public and private life.

The second main concept of the "Fuehrerprinzip" is Totalitarianism which implies the following: The authority of the Fuehrer, his appointees and, through them, of the Party as a whole, extends into all spheres of public and private life.

The Party dominates the State.
The Party dominates the Armed Forces.
The Party dominates all individuals within the State.
The Party eliminates all institutions, groups and individuals unwilling to accept the leadership of the Fuehrer.

As the Party manual states:

"Only those organisations can lay claim to the institution of the leadership principle and to the National Socialist meaning of the State and people in the National Socialist meaning of the term, which . . . have been integrated into, supervised and formed by the Party and which, in the future, will continue to do so."
The Manual goes on to state:
"All others which conduct an organisational life of their own are to be rejected as outsiders and will either have to adjust themselves or disappear from public life."
Illustrations of the Fuehrerprinzip and its application to the Party, the State and allied organisations are fully set forth in the brief and accompanying documents, which will be offered in evidence.

[Page 105]

The third doctrine or technique employed by the Nazi conspirators to make the German people amenable to their will and aims was the doctrine that war was a noble and necessary activity of Germans. The purpose of this doctrine was well expressed by Hitler in "Mein Kampf" when he said:-
"The question of restoration of German power is not a question of how to fabricate arms, but a question of how to create the spirit which makes a people capable of bearing arms. If this spirit dominates a people, the will finds a thousand ways to secure weapons."
Hitler's writings and public utterances are replete with declarations rationalising the use of force and glorifying war. The following is typical, when he said:-
"Always before God and the world, the stronger has the right to carry through his will. History proves it! He who has no might has no use for right."
As will be shown in subsequent proof, this doctrine of the glorification of war played a major part in the education of the German youth of the pre-war era.

I now offer the documents which establish the aims of the Nazi Party and their doctrinal techniques. I also have for the assistance of the Court and defence counsel, briefs which make the argument part of these documents.

I now direct your attention to the rise to power of the Nazi Party.

The first attempt to acquire political control was by force. In fact at no time during this period did the Party participate in any electoral campaigns, nor did it see fit to collaborate with other political groups and parties.

THE PRESIDENT: Major Wallis, have you got copies of these for defendants' counsel ?


THE PRESIDENT: Well, they will be wanting to follow them now.

MAJOR WALLIS: Mr. President, my remarks, with which I am proceeding, will cover an entirely different subject than in the briefs before you. The briefs cover what I have already said, Sir.

THE PRESIDENT: Are you depositing a copy of these briefs for each of the defendants' counsel ?

MAJOR WALLIS: I am informed, if your Honour pleases, that the same procedure has been followed with respect to these briefs as has been followed with respect to the documents, namely, a total of six has been made available to the defendants in Room 54.

THE PRESIDENT: What do you say?

MAJOR WALLIS: A total of six copies has been made available to the defendants in Room 54. If your Honour does not deem that number sufficient, I feel sure that I can give assurance, on behalf of the Chief Prosecutor of the United States, that before the close of the day an ample supply of copies will be there for use.

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal thinks that the defence counsel should each have a copy of these briefs.

MAJOR WALLIS: That will be done, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: Members of the defence counsel, you will understand that I have directed on behalf of the Tribunal that you should each have a copy of this brief.

DR. RUDOLF DIX: (Counsel for defendant Schacht): We are very grateful for this directive, but none of us has seen any of these documents so far. I assume and hope that these documents will be given to the defence in the German translation.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. (Pause) Yes, Major Wallis.

MAJOR WALLIS: I now direct your attention to the rise to power of the Nazi Party.

The 9th November, 1923, warranted the end as well as the beginning of an era. On the 9th November occurred the historical fact popularly known as the Hitler Putsch. During the night of the 8th to 9th November, Hitler, supported by

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the S.A. under the defendant Goering, at a meeting in Munich, proclaimed the National Revolution and his dictatorship of Germany, and announced himself as the Chancellor of the Reich. On the following morning the duly constituted authorities of the State, after some bloodshed in Munich, put an end to this illegal attempt to seize the government. Hitler and some of his followers were arrested and tried, and sentenced to imprisonment.

The new era in the National Socialist movement commences with Hitler's parole from prison in December 1924. With the return of its leader, the Party took up its fight for power once again. The prohibitions invoked by the government against the Nazi Party at the time of the Munich Putsch gradually were removed, and Hitler the Fuehrer of the Party, formally announced that in seeking to achieve its aims to overthrow the Weimar Government, the Party would resort only to "legal" means. A valid inference from these facts may well be suggested, namely that the Party's resort to "legality" was in reality only a condition on which it was permitted to carry on its activities in a democratically organised State. But, consistent with its professed resort to "legality," the Party now participated in the popular elections of the German people and generally took part in political activity. At the same time it engaged in feverish activity to expand the party membership, its organisational structure and activities. The S.A. and the S.S. recruited numerous new members. Hitler's "Mein Kampf" appeared in 1925. The Hitler Youth was founded. Newspapers were published, among them the Volkischer Beobachter of which the defendant Rosenberg was editor, and Der Angriff published by Goebbels, later the notorious Minister of Propaganda and Public Enlightenment. Meetings of other political parties were interfered with and broken up, and there was much street brawling.

The results of the Party's attempt to gain political power made little headway for a number of years, despite the strenuous efforts exerted to that end. In 30 elections in which the National Socialists participated from 1925 to 1930 for seats in the "Reichstag" and in the "Landtage" or Provincial Diets of the various German states, the Nazis received mandates in but 16 and gained no seats at all in 14 elections. The National Socialist vote in the l927 elections did not exceed 4 per cent of the total number of votes cast. The year 1929 marks the first modest success at the polls in the State of Thuringia. The Nazi received over 11 per cent of the popular vote, elected six representatives out of the total of fifty-three to the Diet, and the defendant Frick became Minister of Interior of Thuringia, the first National Socialist chosen to ministerial rank.

With such encouragement and proof of the success of its methods to win support, the Nazi Party redoubled its traditional efforts (by means of terror and coercion). These met with some rebuff on the part of the Reich and various German States. Prussia required its civil servants to terminate their membership in the Party and forbade the wearing of brown shirts, which were worn by the S.A. of the Party. Baden likewise ruled against the wearing of brown shirts, and Bavaria prohibited the wearing of uniforms by political organisations. New National Socialist writings appeared in Germany. The new "National Socialist Monthly" appeared under the editorship of the defendant Rosenberg, and shortly thereafter, in June, 1930, Rosenberg's "Myth of the 20th century" was published.

Against this background - President von Hindenburg having meanwhile dissolved the Reichstag when Chancellor Bruning failed to obtain a vote of confidence - Germany moved to the polls once more on the 14th September, 1930. By this election their representation in the Reichstag was increased from 12 seats to 107 seats out of a total of 577.

The new Reichstag met and 107 Nazis marched into the session dressed in brown shirts. Rowdy opposition at once developed, intent on causing the fall of the Bruning Cabinet. Taking advantage of the issues caused by the then prevailing general economic distress, the Nazis sought a vote of non- confidence

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and dissolution of the Reichstag. Failing in these obstructionary tactics, the Nazis walked out of the Reichstag.

With 107 members in the Reichstag, the Nazi propaganda increased in violence. The obstruction by the Nazi deputies of the Reichstag continued with the same pattern of conduct. Repeatedly motions of non-confidence in Bruning and for dissolution of the Reichstag were offered and were lost. And after every failure the Nazi members stalked out of the chamber anew.

By spring of 1932, Brunings' position became untenable and the defendant von Papen was appointed Chancellor. The Reichstag was dissolved and new elections held in which the Nazis increased the number of their seats to 230 out of a total of 608. The Nazi Party was becoming a strong party in Germany, but it had failed to become the Majority Party. The obstructive tactics of the Nazi deputies in the Reichstag continued, and by the fall of 1932 von Papen's government was no longer able to continue. President von Hindenburg again dissolved the Reichstag, and in the new elections of November the Nazi representation in the Reichstag actually decreased to 196 seats. The short-lived von Schleicher government then came into being - it was the 3rd December, 1932 - and by the end of January, 1933, it went out of existence. With the support of the Nationalist Party under Hugenberg and other political assistance, Hitler became Chancellor of Germany by designation of von Hindenburg.

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