The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)
Nuremberg, war crimes, crimes against humanity

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
27th May to 6th June, 1946

One Hundred and Forty-Fourth Day: Saturday, 1st June, 1946
(Part 2 of 7)

[DR. SERVATIUS continues his examination of MAX TIMM]

[Page 232]

Q. Are those the only things which happened daily in a normal administration, or were there other catastrophic things reported?

A. Such things as you call catastrophic, Doctor, did not come to my knowledge, because if they had, I should still remember them now.

Q. Who supervised the execution of the orders, and how did that come to your knowledge or how should that have come to your knowledge?

A. Various agencies were concerned with supervising the occupations of foreign workers. There were five or six different agencies, especially the German Labour Front, which, on the basis of a so-called Fuehrer decision, claimed for itself the question of the treatment and care of foreign worker's. And I may mention in this connection that it repeatedly said this assignment was given to it by means of an order through the General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour to the German Labour Front, so that to a certain extent it was bound by a higher authority to carry out this task of caring for and controlling the treatment. On this fundamental question, there were repeated conversations between the office of the GBA and the German Labour Front. And these later led to an agreement according to which all these questions were entrusted by the GBA to the German Labour Front. To settle these matters, the German Labour Front established a Central Inspection which had the task of looking after foreign workers throughout the whole Reich. In addition to this Central Inspection, there was also the Office for the Employment of Labour within the German Labour Front.

Q. We will come to that in a minute.

[Page 233]

A. Yes.

Q. What connection was there, then, between Sauckel's office and this Central Inspection of the Labour Front? How was the connection established?

A. In the first place, a man from the German Labour Front worked as liaison man in Sauckel's technical staff.

Q. Who was that?

A. That was Herr Hoffman. And in the second place, the Central Inspection for the German Labour Front constantly had conferences on their inspection activities to which an official of the GBA was invited.

Q. This liaison man, Hoffman, presumably reported on what he heard from the Labour Front?

A. Yes.

Q. What did he report?

A. The things which he reported covered the same ground as I told you about previously.

Q. The German Labour Front already had this task before Sauckel's office was set up?

A. The German Labour Front was of the opinion, and, as I, for several -

Q. (Interposing.) Witness, you must answer me. The German Labour Front had this task before Sauckel came?

A. Yes.

Q. Did it consider that its authority was restricted by the fact that Sauckel was appointed?

A. I was just about to explain that it considered its assignment a general, comprehensive one; and when the newly appointed Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour occupied himself so intensively with these matters, it did see in this a certain encroachment on its task.

Q. And was this agreed upon between Ley and Sauckel?

A. Yes.

Q. At whose instigation was this agreement reached?

A. As far as I can recall, the suggestion can be traced to a wish of the German Labour Front.

Q. And what was the aim?

A. Of course, I can only give my personal opinion. I believe that the aim was in any case to express the general competency of the German Labour Front in these questions.

Q. Who presented the agreement, Sauckel - ?

THE PRESIDENT: Have we not the agreement between Sauckel and Ley?

DR. SERVATIUS: It was submitted by the prosecution.

THE PRESIDENT: If we have it, we do not want to have his personal recollection of it, do we?

DR. SERVATIUS: The witness goes back too far. I would like to know who suggested it and drew it up, and when it was signed. There are two dates at the foot of this document as far as I remember to-day.

M. HERZOG: Mr. President, the document which is being mentioned now was handed in to the Tribunal. It is No. 1913-PS.

DR. SERVATIUS: It is in my Document Book, in the first Document Book, Page 79. In the English Book it is Page 74. It can be found here in the first text -

THE PRESIDENT: What are you after? There is no use in getting the evidence of a witness who said he does not remember in detail about it, about a document which we have got before us. It does not seem to me to be in the least useful to know who suggested that the agreement should be entered into.

[Page 234]


Q. There were still other inspections. For example, the Gauleiter was an authorized agent for the Employment of Labour. To what extent did the Gauleiter report things which occurred in their Gaue to the office for the Employment of Labour.

A. The Gauleiter were appointed by the General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour, by virtue of his Regulation No. 1, to be his authorized agents, with the task of applying themselves precisely to this question.

Q. What did they report?

A. I do not know of any written reports from the Gauleiter on this question; at least, not to any extent worth mentioning. Hardly any written reports from the Gauleiter came in on this question; at least, not to our agency.

Q. On this occasion, I should like to clear up the question of the position the Gauleiter held as authorized agents for the Employment of Labour in relation to the Gau Labour Offices. Was the Gauleiter chairman of the Gau Labour Directorate, and what relation did they have to each other?

A. In administration and matters of personnel, the president of the Gau Labour Office was undoubtedly subordinate to the General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour, or to the Reich Labour Minister. But the General Plenipotentiary had made it the duty of the presidents of the Gau Labour Offices to keep close contact with the Gauleiter and to make constant reports on the things which occurred in their sphere of work, especially if there should be any tension or difficulties in the Gau, and to turn to the Gauleiter for aid.

Q. If I understand you correctly, the Party as such had nothing to do with the actual utilization of labour itself?

A. I believe so. If the question is to be considered in that way, I would say that the appointment of a General Plenipotentiary emphasized the political aspect of the Employment of Labour and that the Gauleiter, who changed from time to time, concerned himself, to a greater or lesser extent, with the questions of the employment of labour.

Q. As an organ for care and control?

A. Yes, for all questions concerning the employment of labour.

Q. Witness, you will understand that your testimony concerning your knowledge of the events submitted by the prosecution is received with great scepticism. Did you not unofficially hear and see things which, if they did not come to your attention officially, certainly should have given you cause to investigate them more thoroughly?

A. Of course, one heard here and there of cases where foreign workers were allegedly ill-treated in some way, As far as such things came to my attention, I always considered them official matters and made out a report accordingly or had them attended to. In such cases, the necessary investigations were made immediately and everything necessary was done to clear up the matter.

Q. Were these individual cases not symptoms of conditions as a whole?

A. I do not believe so. At any rate, events which one might call catastrophic never came to my attention. As I have already said, they were nearly always only things which were connected with the question of treatment, that is to say, housing, clothing, and so forth.

Q. What was the production and the morale of the workers?

A. The production of foreign workers varied. The production of the Eastern workers was especially good. In general, because of this production, the demand for Eastern workers was great. The production of the French workers was very good too, especially the skilled workers -

Q. That is enough. Now, I must come back again to your connections with the Occupied Territories. Did you take part in negotiations with agencies in occupied territories?

[Page 235]

A. Not in the East; a few times I went on trips in the West with the General Plenipotentiary and took part in the negotiations.

Q. Were you with him once when he visited General Falkenhausen?

A. Yes, I was present at the negotiations.

Q. Of what nature were these negotiations as far as the atmosphere was concerned? Were they tense, were they friendly, or what were they like?

A. The conferences with General Falkenhausen at which I was present were, in general, comparatively short. I had the feeling that the two gentlemen did not care for each other -

THE PRESIDENT: What does it matter whether they were tense or friendly or short?

DR. SERVATIUS: General Falkenhausen made an affidavit which was submitted here in which he said that Sauckel gave him orders and dealt with him in a manner which induced him to offer strong opposition.

THE PRESIDENT: If you want to contradict Falkenhausen's affidavit, you can put it to the witness, if that's what you are trying to do.

DR. SERVATIUS: I do not have it here at the moment. I will pass that question.


Q. You were in France?

A. Yes.

Q. Were you present at negotiations with the French authorities?

A. I was present at negotiations with Laval, who was Premier at that time.

Q. Of what nature were these negotiations?

A. One can really say that the negotiations were carried on in a very friendly manner.

Q. Did the French not offer any complaints?

A. Individual complaints were brought up. I recall that the complaints were especially about the question of wages.

Q. I should like to ask you whether complaints about treatment, the methods of recruitment, coercive measures, and such - like - whether complaints were ever made about these things?

A. No, I do not remember any complaints of this sort. I should certainly be able to call them to mind if there had been any.

Q. I have a few more questions concerning Sauckel's relation to the Central Planning Board and to Speer. You yourself repeatedly represented Sauckel at the Central Planning Board. Is that correct?

A. Yes, several times.

Q. What was the attitude of the Central Planning Board towards Sauckel?

A. The Central Planning Board was a department of the Four-Year Plan. Its task, as far as the GBA was concerned, was to collect the demands for workers made by the big employers and to adjust these demands at regular sessions. Since the General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour could not judge the importance of the supply of workers needed by the various industries, this question was decided in the Central Planning Board. An attempt was made, for certain periods of time, for as long a time as possible, to work out a balance of workers.

THE PRESIDENT: Defendant Sauckel has told us all about this already, has he not?


THE PRESIDENT: Then there is no need to go into it with another witness.

DR. SERVATIUS: Yes, Mr. President.


Q. Do you know Speer's position?

A. Yes.

[Page 236]

Q. What was Speer's position in regard to Sauckel and vice versa? Could Speer give Sauckel, in particular, orders?

A. Speer was General Plenipotentiary for Armaments while Sauckel was General Plenipotentiary for the Employment of Labour, and Speer held the point of view that he, as Armament Minister, should have authority in all matters pertaining to the production of munitions, that is, raw materials, coal, and thereby also pertaining to the employment of labour.

Q. Could Speer give Sauckel orders and instructions, or did he, in fact, give them?

A. Yes, formally. As I just said, the question was not quite clear, and the two conceptions were always opposed. In reality, there was always a certain tension between the two men because the Armament Ministry more or less wanted to claim the power to issue instructions. The tension was, generally, cleared up through talks or the exchange of letters between the two men. Sometimes it led to what one might call "unification" conferences headed by Lammers, who was Reich Minister at that time.

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