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

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
2nd July to 15th July 1946

One Hundred and Sixty-Ninth Day: Tuesday, 2nd July, 1946
(Part 8 of 8)

[Page 31]

DR. SAUTER: Mr. President, the witness Puhl during his examination in the French camp also had the questions of the cross-examination submitted to him which the prosecution asked for and they were answered by him. Therefore, he was not only interrogated about the points which I raised, but also about the questions put in the cross-examination by the prosecution. Therefore, I take the liberty of submitting this document, which is an interrogatory of Emil Puhl, Document Book 3, Supplement No. 3, and to which is assigned exhibit No. 17.

This witness Puhl, who was the vice-president of the Reichsbank, in this interrogatory deals solely with matters entirely different from the matters dealt with here in his examination, namely, the preparations which the Reichsbank President, Dr. Funk, made in the event of war; that is question No. 1. The handling of the clearing debts is question No. 2.

The question of the higher valuation of the Danish currency -

THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal thinks you need not read the interrogatory but the Tribunal will allow it to go in in this case.

DR. SAUTER: Thank you, Mr. President. I only wanted briefly to sketch the contents of this testimony.

Then I submit additional testimony given by a witness which has been granted by the Tribunal; it is the testimony given by the witness Heinz Kallus, to be found in Document Book Walter Funk, Supplement 4, and is assigned exhibit No. Funk 18. I also submit this testimony to the General Secretary and I should like to ask, in order to save time, that the Tribunal take judicial notice of its contents.

As my fourth and last document there is an affidavit subscribed by Mr. Messersmith, a supplement to a previous statement which has been submitted to the Tribunal. This is very brief, in fact it is but one sentence and it may be found

[Page 32]

in the Document Book Walter Funk, Supplement No. 5, with Exhibit No. 19. I also submit this document. And now I have arrived at the conclusion of my report, Mr. President. Thank you very much.

DR. THOMA (counsel for defendant Rosenberg): Mr. President, I should like to submit to the Tribunal the testimony of the witness Dr. Beil. Up to now I had received this testimony only in English. I have obtained it from the Translation Division so that I could submit it as Exhibit 50. In this connection I have another request. This interrogatory contains important questions dealing with the attitude adopted by the Eastern Ministry in the matter of allocation of labour, and it is of such importance that I ask the permission of the Tribunal to have it read. Since I am not entirely conversant with the English language, I should like to ask to have an interpreter read this interrogatory.

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Thoma, has this document been offered in evidence before? It was granted by the Tribunal, was it not, this interrogatory?

DR. THOMA: Yes, it has already been granted by the Tribunal.

THE PRESIDENT: Is it necessary to read it? Cannot you submit it in evidence and the Tribunal will consider it?

DR. THOMA: I leave that of course to the Tribunal to decide. I wanted to point out only that this is very important and decisive testimony in regard to the question of manpower in the Eastern Ministry. However, I shall leave that to the judgement of the Tribunal.

THE PRESIDENT: Cannot you summarize it?

DR. THOMA: Mr. President, I have only received an English translation, and I do not wish to attempt to do anything with it but I believe there are only two pages. The interpreter will read that in no time at all.

THE PRESIDENT: Let the interpreter read it then.

(English interpreter reads the document as follows):

"Copy-RO Exhibit No. 50.

Completed interrogatory of Ministerialrat Dr. Beil, in behalf of Rosenberg.

The witness having been duly sworn, states:

Q. Were you the permanent official (Sachbearbeiter) in the East Ministry (Ost Ministerium) in charge of the questions of labour and social policy?

A. Yes, I was one of ten permanent officials. We originally started with 52, but as the East Front receded, the staff was finally reduced to ten. I was in charge of the administration side of the labour and social policy. The head of the department was Landesbauernfuehrer Peukert.

Q. Was the East Ministry in favour of voluntary recruiting of workers in the east?

A. Yes, of voluntary recruiting only, my instructions being that it should only be carried out on this basis.

Q. Are any results known?

A. Yes, but the results were not as great as anticipated, only some 300,000 to 400,000 volunteers and most of these were from the Ukraine, Lithuania and Estonia.

Q. Were there any negotiations about decreasing the quotas ordered by the GBA?

A. Yes, negotiations for decreasing the quotas took place, but broke down owing to Sauckel demanding something like a million workers to be transferred to the interior.

Q. Who was responsible for the care and control of the east workers (Ostarbeiter) in the Reich?

A. The German Arbeitsfront and the Reichsnahrstand were responsible for the care of the east workers, the former for workers in munitions and heavy industry and the latter for agricultural workers.

Q. What was the point of view of the department, ASO - "

[Page 33]

DR. THOMA: ASO, if I may interrupt, is the Labour, Social and Political Department of the East Ministry.

(Interpreter continuing):

"Q. What was the point of view of the department, ASO, concerning the treatment of the east workers in the Reich? A. The view of my department, ASO, was that the voluntary recruiting of workers on a free movement basis, thus taking them out of the barbed-wire enclosed factories, would be the best method of treatment. We also advocated the removal of the arm badges, worn originally on the arm and later on the left wrist, which bore the word 'East' so as to distinguish them from workers from the west, who never at any time wore badges. The wording being later changed to 'Greater Russia ', 'White Russia' and 'Ukraine', the people from the Baltic States did not wear the arm badge. Certain Russians, small groups of Cossacks, Tartars and one or two others were not compelled to wear the arm band, as they were anti- Bolshevistic and pro-German and a certain proportion of these were eventually called up into the German Army. Some 7,000 youths from Ruthenia were called up by ASO and these were apprenticed at Junkers Works.

Q. Is the Central Office (Zentralstelle) for the Eastern People (Ostvolker) at the East Ministry known to you? How is this organized?

A. Yes, it was considered to be a consulate for the east; members of the Staff were partly Germans and partly local employees from the east, who were considered suitable for such employment. Some of the foreign employees were placed at the disposal of the country offices to look after the interests of their fellow countrymen working in the countries. At the Central Office were instituted offices for each of the Eastern States, each office being controlled by a German, some of whom had originally come from these States. There was also a welfare branch which was run by persons from these Eastern States, to look after the comfort, etc., of their individual countrymen; there was also a religious branch which was run by clergy from these countries, but this branch was not very successful as there was a lack of priests.

Q. Now, with the help of the DAF, were the complaints followed up?

A. The interests of foreign workers were always looked after; missions were sent to the various concentrations of east workers to find out how they were progressing and what kind of treatment they were receiving. These missions dealt with complaints submitted to them on their visits, but the Central Office had to deal also with written complaints received through the post.

Q. , Do you know of a printed circular to the authorities in the country, that ordered just treatment? Did it give details? What was the story about the families who were evacuated by the Army Group Centre and about the children ten to fourteen years old?

A. Yes, there was a circular issued, dealing with this question, and it gave details at great length for the just treatment of the eastern workers. This circular was issued at the request of the Ministry of the East, through Sauckel. A second circular was issued by Rosenberg dealing with the just treatment of workers from the east only. I have no knowledge of this story, as it was dealt with entirely by the Army Group Centre.

Q. Does the witness know the pamphlet issued by the East Ministry to the managers of enterprises concerning the nations of Eastern Europe and the attitude towards them?"

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Thoma, this affidavit does not seem to be short at all. It all seems to be cumulative. Every word of it is what we have heard before, and heard not only once, but over and over again.

THE INTERPRETER: Dr. Thoma has just said that the last sentence is coming up.

[Page 34]

DR. THOMA: There are two more short sentences.


"A. There were two pamphlets issued; one issued by Sauckel, and the other issued in conjunction with DAF and Sauckel and the Ministry for the East.

Q. Has he one handy?

A. I have not got a copy of this pamphlet.

(Signed) Beil."

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Thoma, the Tribunal rely on counsel, you know, and when you tell us that this is an important affidavit, we rely on what you tell us. In the opinion of the Tribunal, the reading of the affidavit was an absolute waste of the Tribunal's time.

DR. THOMA: I should like to put another request to the Tribunal. I have asked that I be granted an interrogatory for the Reichhauptstellenleiter Dr. Oepper of the office of the Delegate of the Fuehrer, for the entire Spiritual and Ideological Training of the NSDAP under Rosenberg's office. This affidavit has not bee granted to me, but I already have it on hand.

THE PRESIDENT: Has the prosecution seen it?

DR. THOMA: No, Mr. President, I do not think so. I submitted an application to the General Secretary. Whether this request has already been transmitted to the prosecution, I do not know.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, the only application that we have got, as far as I can see, is an interrogatory to Dr. Koppen in lieu of Dr. Stellbrecht. Is that the one that you are speaking about now?

DR. THOMA: No, Mr. President, I was granted permission to interrogate Dr. Koppen instead of Dr. Stellbrecht, and the interrogatory has already been sent off. This, however, is a new application regarding Dr. Oeppert and has not yet been decided upon.

THE PRESIDENT: You had better submit it to the prosecution and see whether they have any comment to make on it, and we can take it up tomorrow.

DR. THOMA: Thank you very much, Mr. President.

DR. KUBUSCHOK (counsel for defendant von Papen): In the case of Papen there are six interrogatories which have not been disposed of. Three of them have been returned in the last few days and are in the stage of being translated. I ask, when I receive my last interrogatory, to be allowed to submit all six at one time to the Tribunal.

Then, without my taking any steps to get it, I received an affidavit three days ago from a foreign journalist, Rademacher von Unna, from Milan, Italy. This affidavit at present is being translated. I submitted it to the British prosecutor, and he does not object. I ask to be allowed to submit this affidavit later with the remainder of my documents.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, certainly you may submit it. We shall then pass opinion upon it as to its admissibility.

DR. KUBUSCHOK: Thank you, Mr. President.

DR. SEIDL (counsel for defendants Frank and Hess): Mr. President, I ask permission to submit at this time the answers to the interrogatories from the witnesses which have not yet been submitted. As Exhibit 19 for Frank I submit the answers to the interrogatory given by the witness Dr. Ernst Boepple. Boepple was State Secretary in the Government General, and he has answered forty-one questions in all.

As Frank No. 20, I submit the answers to an interrogatory given by the witness Max Meidinger. Meidinger was chief of the Chancellery of the Government General. He has answered forty-three questions.

[Page 35]

This interrogatory, as well as the first interrogatory by Boepple, as far as I could make out, have not been translated yet, although I handed these interrogatories in to be translated about ten days ago. However, with the interrogatory there is an English translation which was made during the interrogation.

As Frank No. 31 I submit the answers given by the witness Gassner, who answered forty-nine questions. Gassner was Press Chief in the Government General. Frank No. 22 will be the interrogatory deposed by the witness Dr. Stepp, who was President of the Oberlandesgericht. He was mainly concerned with the efforts made by the defendant Frank in the years 1933 and 1934, in his capacity as Bavarian Minister of Justice, for the dissolution of the concentration camp at Dachau.

I should also like to take this opportunity, Mr. President, of pointing out an error of translation which does not refer to the documents of Frank but to a document which was submitted on behalf of the defendant Hess. This was not used by the prosecution, with regard to the personal responsibility of Rudolf Hess. However, it is found in the document book, and the document concerned is 062-PS, Exhibit USA 696. That is a directive of 13th March, 1940, the same directive which was mentioned last Saturday in the case of the defendant Bormann, on which occasion the President himself read figure 4 of this directive, which was submitted as an appendix to this directive of 13th March. There is a very serious error in translation, which completely distorts the sense of the directive and which, I must say, can have very dangerous consequences.

Under figure 4 the words "unschadlich gemacht" ("made harmless") were translated as "liquidated".

THE PRESIDENT: If there is an error in the translation, you had better apply to the General Secretary, and he will have the matter gone into by the Translation Division.

DR. SEIDL: Yes, Mr. President, but the matter does not seem to be as simple as that. The translator obviously had the feeling himself that his translation was not reproducing the sense quite accurately, because in parentheses he added "unschadlich gemacht". In my opinion this sentence must be translated as follows:

"Likewise, enemy parachutists are immediately to be arrested or made harmless."
The sense was obviously that the parachutists -

THE PRESIDENT (interposing): I dare say, Dr. Seidl, but we have not got the document before us and we do not all of us understand the German language. Therefore, it had better be referred to the Translation Division. It is no good referring it to us.

DR. SEIDL: Then I shall put a written application to the General Secretary, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Have the prosecution any objection to these interrogatories which Dr. Seidl has been dealing with? Have the prosecution had the opportunity of putting cross- interrogatories if they wanted to do so?

COLONEL PHILLIMORE: My Lord, I am told that we think so, with the possible exception of the last one. Perhaps I could look into it overnight.


COLONEL PHILLIMORE: I will look into that point and let the Tribunal know.

My Lord, the prosecution have a few documents to put in. I have eight, and I think my friend Mr. Dodd has three. I could do it very quickly, but it might be more convenient to do it tomorrow morning.

[Page 36]

THE PRESIDENT: We will go into all these documents tomorrow morning. There will be some others on behalf of some of the other defendants. We will also hear the witnesses Kempka and Walkenhorst, I believe it is, whom Dr. Bergold wishes to call.

The Tribunal desires Dr. Bergold to be here tomorrow morning in order to be able to examine these witnesses.

The Tribunal will now adjourn.

(A recess was taken until 3rd July, 1946, at 1000 hours.)

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