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

The Trial of German Major War Criminals

Sitting at Nuremberg, Germany
December 3 to December 14, 1945

Nineteenth Day: Thursday, 13th December, 1945
(Part 7 of 10)

[MR. DODD continues]

[Page 377]

There was another death book found at Camp Mauthausen. It is our Document 495-PS and is Exhibit USA 250. This is a single volume, and again has on its cover the words "Death Book - Prisoners of War." And I invite the attention of the Tribunal in particular to Pages 234 to 246. Here the entries record the names of 208 prisoners of war, apparently Russians, who at 15 minutes past midnight on the 10th May, 1942, were executed at the same time. The book notes that the execution was directed by the chief of the S.D. and Sipo, at that time Heydrich.

There was called to my attention as late as this morning a publication of a New York newspaper published in the United States, part of which is made up of three or more pages consisting of advertisements from the families, the relatives, of people who once resided in Germany or in Europe, asking for some advice about them. Most of the advertisements refer to one of these concentration camps or another. The paper is called Der Aufbau. It is a German language newspaper in New York City, published on 23rd day - this particular issue on 23rd November, 1945 - I do not propose to burden the record of this Tribunal with the list of the names of all of these unfortunate individuals, but we refer to it as a publication in the City of New York, a German language newspaper of recent date, which illustrates the horrible extent of this terrible tragedy, which has affected so many people as a result of this concentration camp institution. We feel that no argument, no particular argument, is necessary to support our statements that the Nazi conspirators used these concentration camps and the related instruments of terror in them, to commit Crimes against Humanity and to commit War Crimes.

More about concentration camps will of necessity be involved in the presentation concerning the persecution of the Jews, but this concludes our presentation with respect to the concentration camp as a specific entity of proof.

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Dodd, speaking for myself, I should like to know what these headings mean.

MR. DODD: Yes, I have them here.

THE PRESIDENT: Document 495-PS.

MR. DODD: Yes, Document 495-PS. Column 1 is the serial number assigned to the prisoners in the order of their deaths.


MR. DODD: Column 2, prisoners of war serial number. Column 3 is the last name, Column 4 is the first name.


MR. DODD: Column 5 is the date of birth. Column 6, the place of birth. Column 7, cause of death. In these cases their cause of death is stated as follows.

"Execution pursuant to order of the Chief of the Sipo and S.D. dated 30th April, 1942," and the ditto marks beneath indicate that the same cause of death was assigned to the names which come beneath it. In the eighth column is the date of death and the hour of death. The first one being 9-5- 42 at 23.35 hours. In the ninth column there is a space which says it is reserved for comments.

THE PRESIDENT: There are numbers there too - M1681 is the first one.

[Page 378]

MR. DODD: Well, the German word, I am told, means that it confirms the death with that number. Apparently the number of the -

THE PRESIDENT: I think you said the number of the corpse.

MR. DODD: The number of the corpse, I think that is what it is as distinguished from the number of the prisoner. Each corpse was given a number as well, after the individual died.

COLONEL STOREY: If the Tribunal please, the next phase of War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity, the Persecution of the Jews, will be presented by Major Walsh.


MAJOR WALSH: If the Tribunal please, on behalf of the United States Counsel, I now present to this august Tribunal the evidence to establish certain phases of the Indictment alleged in Count I under War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity, and by agreement between the prosecutors, the allegations in Count IV, Paragraph 10 (b), Crimes against Humanity. The topical title of this presentation is: "The Persecution of the Jews."

At this time I offer in evidence a document book of translations, lettered "T". The documents contained in the book are arranged according to the D, L, PS, and R series; and under the series the translations are listed numerically. This title, "The Persecution of the Jews," is singularly inappropriate when weighed in the light of the evidence to follow. Academically, I am told, to persecute is to afflict, harass, and annoy. The term used does not convey, and indeed I cannot conjure a term that does convey the ultimate aim, the avowed purpose to obliterate the Jewish race.

This presentation is not intended to be a complete recital of all the crimes committed against the Jews. The extent and the scope of the crimes was so great that it permeated the entire German nation, its people, and its organisations.

I am informed that others to follow me will offer additional evidence under other phases of the prosecution's case. Evidence relating to the Party organisations and State organisations, whose criminality the prosecution will seek to establish, will disclose and emphasise the part that these organisations played in the pattern and plan for annihilation.

The French and the Soviet Prosecutors, too, have a volume of evidence all related to this subject, which will be submitted in the course of the trial.

Before I begin a recital of the overt acts leading to the elimination of the Jews, I am prepared to show that these acts and policies within Germany from the year 1933 to the end of the war, related to the planning, preparation, initiation, and waging of aggressive wars, thus falling within the definition of "Crimes against Humanity" as defined in Article 6 (c) of the Charter.

It had long been a German theory that the first world war ended in Germany's defeat because of a collapse in the zone of the interior. In planning for future wars it was determined that the home front must be secure, to prevent a repetition of this 1918 debacle. Unification of the German people was essential to successful planning and waging of war, and the Nazi political premise must be established - "One race, one State, one Fuehrer."

Free trade unions must be abolished, political parties (other than the National Socialist Party) must be outlawed, civil liberties must be suspended, and opposition of every kind must be swept away. Loyalty to God, church, and scientific truth was declared to be incompatible with the Nazi regime.

[Page 379]

The anti-Jewish policy was part of this plan for unification because it was the conviction of the Nazis that the Jews would not contribute to Germany's military programme, but on the contrary would hamper it. The Jew must therefore be eliminated.

This view is clearly borne out by a statement contained in Document 1919-PS, Exhibit USA 170. This document is a transcript of a Himmler speech at a meeting of the S.S. Major Generals on 4th October, 1943, and from Page 4, Paragraph 3, of the translation before the court, I read a very short passage:

"We know how difficult we should have made it for ourselves if with the bombing raids, the burdens and privations of war, we still had Jews today in every town as secret saboteurs, agitators, and trouble mongers; we would now probably have reached the 1916-1917 stage when the Jews were still in the German national body."
The treatment of the Jews within Germany was therefore as much of a plan for aggressive war as was the building of armaments and the conscription of manpower. It falls within the jurisdiction of this Tribunal, as an integral part of the planning and preparation to wage a war of aggression.

It is obvious that the persecution and murder of Jews throughout the conquered territories of Europe following 1939 are War Crimes as defined by Article 6 (b) of the Charter. It further violates Article 46 of the Regulations of the Hague Convention of 1907, to which Germany was a signatory.. I quote Article 46 and ask the Court to take judicial notice thereof.

"Family honour and rights, the lives of persons, and private property, as well as religious convictions and practice, must be respected."
I know of no crime in the history of mankind more horrible in its details than the treatment of the Jews. It is intended to establish that the Nazi Party precepts, later incorporated within the policies of the German State, often expressed by the defendants at bar, were to annihilate the Jewish people. I shall seek to avoid the temptation to editorialise or to draw inferences from the documents, however great the provocation; rather I shall let the documentary evidence speak for itself - its stark realism will be unvarnished. Blood lust may have played some part in these savage crimes, but the underlying purpose and objective to annihilate the Jewish race was one of the fundamental principles of the Nazi plan to prepare for and to wage aggressive war. I shall from this point limit my proof to the overt acts committed, but I venture to request the Court's indulgence, if it is necessary in weaving the pattern of evidence, to make reference to certain documents and evidence previously submitted.

Now this ultimate objective, that is, the elimination and extermination of the Jews, could not be accomplished without preliminary steps and measures. The German State must first be seized by the Nazi Party, the force of world opinion must be faced, and even the regimented German people must be indoctrinated with hatred against the Jews.

The first clear-cut evidence of the Party policies concerning, the Jews was expressed in the Party programme in February, 1920. I offer in evidence Document 1708-PS, Programme of the National Socialist Party, Exhibit USA 255. With the Court's permission, I would like to quote the relevant part of that programme.

[Page 380]

Paragraph (4):-
"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."
THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): May I interrupt a minute. It is a little hard to know where these exhibits are or what volume you are now quoting from.

MAJOR WALSH: This, Sir, is Document 1708-PS.

THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): Volume 2?

MAJOR WALSH: Volume 2.

THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): And what page of the document?

MAJOR WALSH: That is Paragraph 4 and Paragraph 6, Sir, on the first page.

Paragraph (4)

"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."
And again, in Paragraph (6):-
"The right to determine matters concerning administration and law belongs only to the citizen; therefore, we demand that every public office of any sort whatsoever, whether in the Reich, the county or municipality, be filled only by citizens."
I now offer Document 2662-PS, Mein Kampf, Exhibit USA 256. On Pages 724-725, Hitler, in this book, speaking of the Jew, said that if the National Socialist movement was to fulfil its task - and I quote:
"It must open the eyes of the people with regard to foreign nations and must remind them again and again of the true enemy of our present-day world. In the place of hate against Aryans - from whom we may be separated by almost everything, to whom, however, we are tied by common blood or the great tie of a common culture - it must dedicate to the general anger the evil enemy of mankind as the true cause of all suffering. It must see to it, however, that at least in our country he is recognised as the most mortal enemy and that the struggle against him may show, like a flaming beacon of a better era, to other nations too, the road to salvation for a struggling Aryan mankind."
A flood of abusive literature of all types and for all age groups was published and circulated throughout Germany. Illustrative of this type of publication is the book entitled Der Giftpilz.

I offer in evidence Document 1778-PS, Exhibit USA 257.

This book brands the Jew as a persecutor of the labour class, as a race defiler, a devil in human form, a poisonous mushroom, and a murderer. This particular book instructed school children to recognise the Jew by caricature of his physical features, shown on Pages 6 and 7, taught them that the, Jew abuses little boys and girls, on Page 30, and that the Jewish Bible permits all crimes, Pages 13-17. The defendant Streicher's periodical Der Sturmer No. 14, April, 1937, in particular, went to such extremes as to publish the statement that Jews at the ritual celebration of their Passover slaughtered Christians.

[Page 381]

I offer Document 2699-PS, Exhibit USA 258. On Page 2, Column 1, Paragraphs 6 to 9, I quote:-
"Also numerous confessions made by the Jews show that the execution of ritual murders is a law to the Talmud Jew. The former Chief Rabbi, and later monk, Teofite, declared that the ritual murders take place especially on the Jewish Purim in memory of the Persian murders and Passover in memory of the murder of Christ. The instructions are as follows:

The blood of the victims is to be tapped by force. On Passover it is to be used in wine and matzos. Thus a small part of the blood is to be poured into the dough of the matzos and into the wine. The mixing is done by the Jewish head of the family. The procedure is as follows:

The family head empties a few drops of the fresh and powdered blood into the glass, wets the fingers of the left hand and with it sprays and blesses everything on the table. The head of the family then says, 'Thus we ask God to send the ten plagues to all enemies of the Jewish faith'. Then they eat, and at the end the head of the family exclaims, 'May all Gentiles perish, as the child whose blood is contained in the bread and wine'.

The fresh, or dried and powdered blood of the slaughtered is further used by young married Jewish couples, by pregnant Jewesses, for circumcision and so on. Ritual murder is recognised by all Talmud Jews. The Jew believes he absolves himself thus of his sins."

It is difficult for our minds to grasp that falsehoods such as these could fall on fertile soil, that a literate nation could read, digest, or believe these doctrines. We must realise, however, that with a rigidly controlled Press which precluded an expose of such lying propaganda, some of the ignorant and gullible would be led to believe.

I now offer in evidence Document 2697-PS, a copy of Der Sturmer, Exhibit USA 259.

This publication, Der Sturmer, was published by the defendant Streicher's publishing firm. In this publication, Streicher, speaking of the Jewish faith, said:-

"The Holy Scripture is a horrible criminal romance abounding with murder, incest, fraud and indecency."
And again he said:-
"The Talmud is the great Jewish book of crimes that the Jew practises in his daily life."
This is contained in Document 2698-PS, Der Sturmer, which I now offer in evidence, Exhibit USA 260.

This propaganda campaign of hate was too widespread and notorious to require further elaboration. Within the documents offered in evidence in this and in other phases of the case will be found similar and even more scurrilous statements, many by the defendants themselves, and others by their accomplices.

When the Nazi Party gained control of the German State, a new and terrible weapon against the Jews was placed within their grasp, the power to apply the force of the State against them. This was done by the issuance of decrees

Jewish immigrants were denaturalised 1933 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part I, Page 48o, signed by defendants Frick and Neurath.

[Page 382]

Native Jews were precluded from citizenship: 1935 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part 1, Page 1146, signed by defendant Frick.

Jews were forbidden to live in marriage or to have extra marital relations with persons of German blood: 1935 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part 1, Page 1146, signed by Frick and Hess.

Jews were denied the right to vote: 1936 Reichsgesetzblatt, Part 1, Page 133, signed by defendant Frick.

Jews were denied the right to hold public office or civil service positions: Reichsgesetzblatt 1933, Part 1, Page 277, signed by defendant Frick.

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