10 Aug. 46
COL. TAYLOR: Now, is it true that you have just been testifying that Hitler had some very particular ideas concerning the methods by which warfare on the Eastern Front should be carried out?
VON MANSTEIN: Yes.
COL. TAYLOR: Hitler thought that the occupied Russian territories could best be subdued and pacified by the widespread use of terror, did he not?
VON MANSTEIN: At the time that was by no means clear to me. It was only during the Trial that I learned that.
COL. TAYLOR: Did you not receive an order from the OKW that terroristic means were to be used to keep order in the occupied territories?
VON MANSTEIN: No, I could not, in my opinion, receive any order from the OKW for my army. And I have no recollection of an order to. use terroristic methods, either.
COL. TAYLOR: In order to help in carrying out these plans didn't the OKW issue several orders to the commanding generals that were quite extraordinary? I refer among other things to the Commissar Order that you have mentioned.
VON MANSTEIN: The Commissar Order, after all, only affected the removal of those Soviet elements who, shall we say, were supposed to carry the war beyond the military into the ideological sphere and to urge their troops to fight to the death. That has nothing to do with the extermination of portions of the population at the most, it was the removal of a certain class of followers of the enemy forces who were considered to be more politicians than soldiers.
COL. TAYLOR: Well, in fact, Witness, were not these views of Hitler and the purpose of these orders very well known to you and the other commanding generals on the Eastern Front?
VON MANSTEIN: No, we did not know that this order had a further purpose, for instance, the purpose of exterminating people.
In fact, that thought never struck us at the time.
COL. TAYLOR: Whether you worried about it or not, didn't you know who Hitler and the other political leaders thought were the elements in the Soviet population most likely to be obstructive? I'm asking you, didn't you know?
VON MANSTEIN: Naturally he considered the political commissars to be harmful and to be our enemies; and that was expressed by him in the Commissar Order. Apart from the Commissar Order, I do not know to what extent he thought of annihilating such elements; he did not tell us that, nor did we receive an order to that effect.
COL. TAYLOR: Didn't he also think the Jews should be exterminated for exactly the same reasons?
VON MANSTEIN: That may be; but never once did he discuss the question of the Jews with me.
COL. TAYLOR: You didn't know anything about that?
VON MANSTEIN: No, I knew nothing of the plan of extermination.
COL. TAYLOR: I'd like to ask you a few more questions about the Einsatzgruppen and Einsatzkommandos. Are you telling the Tribunal that you did not know that one of the most important missions of those units was to assist in exterminating the commissars and the Jews in accordance with these policies?
VON MANSTEIN: No, I did not know that.
COL. TAYLOR: Was there an Einsatzgruppe attached to your army, the 11th Army?
VON MANSTEIN: Yes. As Ohlendorf has testified, this Einsatzgruppe was active in the area of my army.
COL. TAYLOR: I think you told us earlier that the Einsatzgruppe was entirely under the orders of Himmler for operational purposes. I think you also told us that Himmler was a bitter enemy of the Army. What did you do when you learned there was an Einsatzgruppe attached to the Army? What were you told about it?
VON MANSTEIN: At that time it was reported to me - I do not even know if the name "Einsatzgruppe" was mentioned at the time - that organs of the SS were to investigate the population in the operational areas from a political point of view and that they had received orders for that from Himmler. I could not do anything against that, because I could not possibly assume that these units of the SS were given criminal tasks.
COL. TAYLOR: I am asking you again, Witness, whether it was the responsibility of you and your headquarters to make sure that the operations of these groups did not interfere with military operations and that you must have kept yourself fully informed on what they were doing?
VON MANSTEIN: If there had been disturbance of military operations in any form, naturally the commanders would have had to intervene, but the fact that the Political Police supervised an occupied area and, in that occupied area, investigated the political reliability of people, is by no means reason to assume that wrongs were committed or that there were mass shootings, or any shootings at all, in this area. The political supervision by Political Police is a phenomenon which exists in every occupied territory.
COL. TAYLOR: I think you have already testified that you did not know of any mass shootings in your area. Is that right? You did not know of any?
VON MANSTEIN: No, I did not know of any.
COL. TAYLOR: Did the commanding generals on the Eastern Front submit special instructions to the troops which support this program to liquidate the Jews and commissars?
VON MANSTEIN: No, that is quite out of the question.
COL. TAYLOR: Did General Reichenau issue such an instruction?
VON MANSTEIN: No. I only know of one order of General Reichenau, which has been brought up in court, and in which he discusses the fighting in the East. This order was sent to us on Hitler's instructions as an example. I personally turned down the order and did not apply it in any way in the orders I issued, and I know of no other commander who attached any weight to it.
COL. TAYLOR: That order of General Reichenau instructed troops to take the most severe revenge on subhuman Jews and all elements of Bolshevism, did it not? Have you seen the order?
VON MANSTEIN: No, I remember that I received an order from General Von Reichenau, but I do not remember that it demanded the liquidation of the Jews, and I consider it entirely out of the question that he did order that.
COL. TAYLOR: Now, I ask you, Witness, the Einsatzkommandos could not have liquidated Jews without the soldiers knowing something about it, could they? Is that true?
VON MANSTEIN: That is perfectly possible, because as Ohlendorf has described it, the shootings of the Jews were camouflaged as "resettlement." The Jews were taken to desolate places and were shot and buried there, so that it is quite certain that the commanding authorities had no knowledge of that. Naturally, it is possible that some soldier or other, quite by accident, may have seen such an execution, and there is in fact evidence of it. I remember in the Russian indictment the description by an engineer who was present during such a shooting, I believe in the Ukraine in the vicinity of Shitomir or Rovno, and described it in most horrible terms.
One can only ask why that man did not report it to the command post. The answer is that the fear of the SS was such that this man, instead of reporting this dirty business, kept it to himself and now comes out with it. At that time - it was not in my area, but, somewhere else - had he gone to some high military command post and described these events, then I am convinced that the commander in question would have intervened; and then, of course, we would also have heard of it. But the fact is that we did not hear about it.
COL. TAYLOR: One more question on this subject, Your Honor.
[Turning to the witness.]
Witness, isn't it true that this order is very carefully drawn so that the troops would understand and, shall we say, sympathize with what the Einsatzkommandos were doing in the way of mass extermination of Jews?
VON MANSTEIN: You mean my order?
COL. TAYLOR: Yes.
VON MANSTEIN: No. There can be no question that I at any time urged my troops, even between the lines, to co-operate in such methods. How could I have concluded by stressing the soldier's honor?
COL. TAYLOR: My Lord, the Prosecution has no further questions of this witness.
THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.
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8 April 46
DR. THOMA: I have only one more question. Did you know anything regarding the fact that Hitler had decided to solve the Jewish question by the final solution, that is, by the annihilation of the Jews?
LAMMERS: Yes, I know a great deal about that. The final solution of the Jewish question became known to me for the first time in 1942. That is when I heard that the Fuehrer supposedly, through Goering, had given an order to the SS Obergruppenfuehrer Heydrich to achieve a solution of the Jewish question. I did not know the exact contents of that order and consequently, since this did not come within my jurisdiction, at the beginning I took a negative attitude, but then as I wanted to know something I, of course, had to contact Himmler. I asked him what was really meant by the idea of the final solution of the Jewish question. Himmler replied that he had received the order from the Fuehrer to bring about the final solution of the Jewish problem-or rather Heydrich and his successor had that order-and that the main point of the order was that the Jews were to be evacuated from Germany. With that statement I was satisfied for the time and waited for fur her developments, since I assumed that I would now in some way-I really had no jurisdiction here-I would obtain some information from Heydrich or his successor, Kaltenbrunner.
Since nothing did come I wanted to inform myself about this, and back in 1942 I announced a report to the Fuehrer, whereupon the Fuehrer told me that it was true that he had given Himmler the order for evacuation but that he did not want any further discussion about this Jewish question during the war. In the meantime or shortly afterwards-this was already at the beginning of 1943-the RSHA sent out invitations to attend a meeting on the subject, "Final Solution of the Jewish Question." I had previously sent out an order to my officials that I was not defining my attitude to this matter, since I wanted to present it to the Fuehrer. I merely ordered that if invitations to a meeting were sent out, one of my officials should attend as a socalled "listening post."
A meeting actually did take place afterwards to discuss this question, but without results. Minutes were taken and the various departments were supposed to express their attitude. When I received these minutes I found that they contained nothing vital. For a second time I forbade taking a definite attitude. I myself refused to take a stand and I remember it very well indeed, because I received a letter which, first of all, was signed by some unimportant man who, as far as I was concerned, had no right to sign. He asked me why I had not yet taken a stand. Secondly, the tone of the inquiry was very unfriendly; he said that everybody had expressed an opinion except me. I ordered that the reply be made that I refused to define my views since I wished to discuss the matter with the Fuehrer first.
In the meantime I once more turned to Herr Himmler. He was of the opinion that it was necessary to discuss this question since a number of problems would have to be solved, particularly since the intention of achieving a final solution of the Jewish question would probably extend to persons of mixed blood, first grade, and would also extend to the socalled "privileged" marriages, that is to say, marriages where only one party was Aryan whereas the other party was Jewish. The Fuehrer stated once more that he did not wish to have a report on it but that he had no objections to consultation on these problems. That some evacuations had taken place in the meantime had become known to me. At that time, at any rate, not the slightest thing was known about the killing of Jews; if crass individual cases came up, I always addressed myself to Himmler and he was always very willing to settle these individual cases.
Finally, however, in 1943, rumors cropped up that Jews were being killed. I had no jurisdiction in this field; it was merely that I occasionally received complaints and on the basis of these complaints I investigated the rumors. But, as far as I could tell, at any rate, these rumors always proved to be only rumors. Every one said he had heard it from somebody else and nobody wanted to make a definite statement. I am, in fact, of the opinion that these rumors were based mostly on foreign broadcasts and that the people just did not want to say from where they had the information.
That caused me once more to undertake an investigation of this matter. First of all, since I, for my part, could not initiate investigations of matters under Himmler's jurisdiction, I addressed myself to Himmler once again. Himmler denied any legal killings and told me, with reference to the order from the Fuehrer, that it was his duty to evacuate the Jews and that during such evacuations, which also involved old and sick people, of course there were cases of death, there were accidents, there were attacks by enemy aircraft. He added too, that there were revolts, which of course he had to suppress severely and with bloodshed, as a warning. For the rest, he said that these people were being accommodated in camps in the East. He brought out a lot of pictures and albums and showed me the work that was being done in these camps by the Jews and how they worked for the war needs, the shoemakers shops, tailors shops, and so forth. He told me:
"This is the order of the Fuehrer; if you believe that you have to take action against it then tell the Fuehrer and tell me the names of the people who have made these reports to you."
Of course, I could not tell him the names, first of all because they did not want to be named, and secondly, they only knew these things from hearsay, so as I said, I could not have given him any definite material at all.
Nevertheless, I once again reported this matter to the Fuehrer, and on this occasion he gave me exactly the same reply which I had been given by Himmler. He said, "I shall later on decide where these Jews will be taken and in the meantime they are being cared for there."
Then he said the same thing Himmler had said, which gave me the impression that Himmler had told the Fuehrer that Lammers would come and probably report to him something about this.
But that final solution of the Jewish problem was nevertheless in my portfolio and I was determined to bring it UP once again with the Fuehrer.
DR. THOMA: I am now putting this question to you: Did Himmler ever tell you that the final solution of the Jewish problem would take place through the extermination of the Jews?
LAMMERS: That was never mentioned. He talked only about evacuation.
DR. THOMA: He talked only about evacuation?
LAMMERS: Yes, only about evacuation.
DR. THOMA: When did you hear that these 5 million Jews had been exterminated?
LAMMERS: I heard of that here a while ago.
DR. THOMA: In other words the matter was completely secret and only very few persons knew of it?
LAMMERS: I assume that Himmler arranged it so that no one learned anything about it and that he formed his Kommandos in such a way that nobody knew anything about them. Of course, there must be a large number of people who must have known something about it.
DR. THOMA: Can you tell me what people must have known something about it, apart from those who actually carried out these exterminations? Who, apart from those people, must have known something about it?
LAMMERS: Well, to start with, Himmler must have passed his order on to other people; and there must have been certain leading officials, and these leading officials must, of course, have had other leading officials subordinate to them who took charge of the Kommandos and who kept everything completely secret.
DR. THOMA: No further questions.
THE PRESIDENT: We will adjourn now.
He is a proud German soldier and loved his leader.
It's touched upon with some emotional innuendo, which is common practice in that business. (Check the photos, with no source and background information, just calling up propaganda images, which is an appeal to the collective sublime)borjastick wrote:Cozz88 he doesn't deny the holocaust as the subject of the holocaust isn't discussed. He is a fine man but by saying he was at several concentration camps as an SS man he is open to the 'common plan' prosecution, a great shame.
He is a proud German soldier and loved his leader.
He's definitely arguing with those people that are trying to "holocaustianize" him. But what his stance is, isn't firmly clear, and I don't think it's the filmmakers intention to bring that out anyway.
Cozz88 wrote:I am a holohoax denier guys. Hafner was dismissing the claim of what the spanish woman said hitler was killing all those people as propaganda as in how the British accused the Germans in WW1 of killing 700,00 Serbs.
... in homicidal gas chambers (viewtopic.php?t=8497). Good to know the same 'British' newspaper (the London Daily Telegraph) charged the Germans with the very same crime 26 years later (but with 700,000 Jews instead of Serbs), what kickstarted Holohoax atrocity propaganda during WW2.
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HeiligeSturm wrote:hermod wrote:April 1945: As Soviet-Allied atrocity propaganda about Nazi gas chambers grows bigger and bigger, Radio Berlin denies that Nazi Germany ever had any homicidal gas chamber in its concentration camps, and adds that the German gas chambers are "merely delousing devices" using poison gas only for "sanitary purposes."
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This is nice find.
And all those chambers allied found from camps were delousing chambers.
Morris Venezia: Of course I was every day over there.
Carol Stulberg: Can you describe to us what it looked like?
Morris Venezia: It’s nothing to describe
HeiligeSturm wrote:And all those chambers allied found from camps were delousing chambers.
Some were other kinds of rooms such as morgues and shower rooms. But the German leaders of April 1945 didn't know that the Soviet-Allied invaders were busy labelling any kind of room a homicidal gas chamber for atrocity propaganda purposes. IMO, at that time, most German leaders still believed that the Soviet-Allied troops had merely misinterpreted what they had found in the German concentration camps they had just captured, hence their comment about delousing devices using poison gas for sanitary purposes only in this broadcast. Also apparent from the puzzled comment by Himmler in April 1945 about the Soviet-Allied invaders wanting to hang him only for having built crematories for the disposal of contagious corpses. He visibly failed to realize that Soviet-Allied propagandists had turned his inocuous sanitary crematories into giant slaughterhouses for the mass murder & obliteration of millions of Jews and others.
29 June 46
DR. FRITZ: Mr. President, Gentlemen of the Tribunal, I beg to be permitted to continue with the examination of the witness [Moritz] Von Schirmeister.
Witness, yesterday, at the end of the session, we stopped at the point dealing with the anti-Semitism expressed by the Defendant Fritzsche in his radio speeches; in connection with that point, I have a further question. According to the statement made by Dr. Goebbels, to where were the Jews evacuated?
VON SCHIRMEISTER: Up to the first year of the Russian campaign, Dr. Goebbels in the conferences over which he presided, repeatedly mentioned the Madagascar plan. Later he changed this and said that a new Jewish state was to be formed in the East, to which the Jews were to be taken.
DR. FRITZ: Do you know whether, in dealing with reports from abroad concerning alleged German atrocities, not only towards the Jews but towards other peoples as well, Fritzsche always had inquiries made at the RSHA or other authorities concerned?
VON SCHIRMEISTER: Yes. Not only with regard to atrocity reports but all propaganda reports from abroad which were embarrassing to us. He made inquiries sometimes at the office of Muller, at the RSHA in Berlin, and sometimes he inquired of the authorities that were directly concerned in these matters.
DR. FRITZ: And what other agencies were concerned besides the RSHA where he might have made inquiries?
VON SCHIRMEISTER: For example, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, the Armament Ministry, the OKW; it all depended.
DR. FRITZ: Do you know whether in reply to such inquiries a clear and completely plausible denial was given, or how was a matter of this sort handled?
VON SCHIRMEISTER: There were not always denials, not at all; very frequently we had quite precise answers. For example, if it was asserted that there had been a strike in Bohemia-Moravia, then the answer was: Yes, in such and such a factory a strike took place. But always and without exception, there was a very definite denial of concentration camp atrocities and so forth. That is precisely why these denials were so widely believed. I must emphasize that this was our only possibility of getting information. These pieces of information were not intended for the public, but for the minister [Joseph Goebbels], and again and again the answer came: "No, there is no word of truth in this." Even today I do not know by what other means we could have obtained information.
http://ungraindesable.the-savoisien.com ... Part_1.pdf
See the section .... April 8, 1945: Radio Berlin denies rumors of "gas chambers"
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