- “Before Hitler and I took the decision to attack Russia… the Hungarians had already given their consent to participate in the war against the U.S.S.R” Ion Antonescu
- General, you said that when you became Quartermaster General of the Army on 3 September 1940, you found an unfinished plan for an attack against the Soviet Union.
- At the conference of 16 July 1941 Hitler spoke of the Finnish claims to Eastern Karelia, the Leningrad region, and the city of Leningrad.
- “Hitler also stressed that, according to the information at his disposal, the Soviet Union did not intend to fight either Germany or Romania.”
- All agreements between the OKW and the Finnish General Staff had as their sole purpose from the very beginning the participation of the Finnish Army and the German troops on Finnish territory in the aggressive war against the Soviet Union.
- Nobody ever reckoned with the possibility of a Russian attack on Finland.
- The decision to send to Romania a military mission of the German General Staff for the reorganization of the Romanian Army, in order to prepare for and subsequently to attack the U.S.S.R., was taken no later than September 1940, that is, no less than 9 months prior to the attack on the U.S.S.R.
- … in return for our assistance in the war, Romania would be allowed to occupy and administer other Soviet territories, right up to the River Dnieper.
- There existed since the fall of 1940 a military cooperation between Germany and Finland, and the German Air Force had made arrangements with the Finnish General Staff for through traffic from northern Norway to the Finnish harbors in the transport of men and material.
- For the war against Russia, Hungary must make available 15 operational units (including 3 mobilized, cavalry, and Panzer units); she must also complete, by 1 June 1941, the erection of fortifications in Transcarpathian Russia, assist the advance of the German troops in the area adjacent to the Hungarian-Yugoslav and the Hungarian-Soviet frontiers and facilitate the deployment and the passage of supplies for the troops through Hungary. The details for the operational preparation will be determined later by representatives of the German General Staff about to be sent to Hungary. As a political compensation for her participation, Hungary will receive territory in Yugoslavia and in Soviet Russia (the ancient Principality of Halicz) and the land at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains, up to the River Dniester.”
- I just want to remind the Tribunal that according to Paragraph 3, Section 2, of Plan Barbarossa, Finland was to cover the advance of the German landing of Group North, consisting of units of the 21st Group, which was due to arrive from Norway, and then to operate jointly with that group. According to Plan Barbarossa, the liquidation of the Russian forces at Hango was also assigned to Finland.
- “In this connection General Taloela told me, during a conference at his staff headquarters in Aunus in November 1941, that he, acting on Marshal Mannerheim’s personal orders, had-as far back as September 1940-been one of the first to contact the German High Command with a view to joint preparation for a German and Finnish attack on the Soviet Union.”
- Touching on the occupation by Hungary of the Transcarpathian Ukraine in 1939, Ruszkiczay-Ruediger testified-see Page 2, Paragraph 3 of the Russian text of the depositions which can be found on Page 101 of the document book. I quote the following-the quotation is underlined: “This took place not long before the outbreak of the German-Polish war.”
Nuremberg Trial Proceedings Vol. 7
Tuesday, 12 February 1946
THE PRESIDENT: General Rudenko, you were going to recall the witness who was being called yesterday, Field Marshal Paulus, were you not, so that the defendants’ counsel may have the opportunity of questioning him? Will you do that now?
GEN. RUDENKO: Yes, according to the wish of the Tribunal the witness is in the Palace of Justice.
[The witness, Paulus, took the stand.]
THE PRESIDENT: Field Marshal Paulus, I want to remind you that you should pause after the question that has been asked you before you answer it, in order that the translation shall get through Do you follow what I mean?
PAULUS: I have understood.
- NELTE: Witness, I should like to ask several questions. On 3 September 1940, you came as Chief Quartermaster I to the High Command of the Army; is that correct?
PAULUS: That is correct.
- NELTE: Who was the Commander-in-Chief of the Army at that time?
PAULUS: It will be very well known to you that at that time the Commander-in-Chief of the Army was Field Marshal Von Brauchitsch.
- NELTE: I believe that the phraseology that you have used is not correct because I did not put this question for any other reason than just to explain the situation to the people who are assembled here. It is known to us but may not be known to the Tribunal. Who was at that time the Chief of Staff of the Army?
PAULUS: It was Generaloberst Halder.
: Were you, as Chief Quartermaster I, the permanent representative of the Chief of Staff?
PAULUS: I was the deputy of the Chief of Stall! for those cases which he told me to supervise, and as for the rest I had to execute the tasks with which he charged me.
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- NELTE: In this case were you especially charged with the adaptation of the plan which we later learned to know as Plan Barbarossa?
PAULUS: Yes, to the extent of which I told you yesterday.
- NELTE: Field Marshal Brauchitsch, your former Commander in-Chief and superior, in an affidavit presented by the Prosecution has made a statement about the treatment of military plans. Wit! the permission of the Tribunal, I should like to ask you to tell me whether this statement by Field Marshal Von Brauchitsch is also your opinion. I quote:
“When Hitler decided to use military pressure or force to achieve his political aims, the Commander-in-Chief of the Army, if he was involved, first received orally a sort of orientation or a corresponding order.” Is that your opinion also?
PAULUS: I have no knowledge of that.
- NELTE: Generaloberst Halder, your immediate superior, in an affidavit which also has been submitted by the Prosecution, has said the following about the handling of such military operational things:
“Special military affairs were the responsibility of those parts of the Wehrmacht, that is, Army, Navy, and Air Force, which were immediately under the Supreme Command of the Wehrmacht, that is to say, under the command of Hitler, who was at the same time the Chief of the Reich.” Is that your opinion likewise?
PAULUS: I ask you please to repeat this once more because I could not understand exactly what you meant.
: It is about the question: Who were the military persons responsible to Hitler in the forming of important plans? In respect to that, Von Brauchitsch said what you have just heard, and Halder said the following:
“Special military affairs were the responsibility of those parts of the Wehrmacht, that is, Army, Navy, and Air Force, which were immediately under the Supreme Command of the Wehrmacht, that is to say, under the command of Hitler, who was at the same time the Chief of the Reich.” Is that so?
PAULUS: We received the orders about military measures from the High Command of the Wehrmacht. Such was the Directive Number 21. I thought that those people held responsibility who were the first military advisers of Hitler in the High Command of the Wehrmacht.
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: If you have seen Directive Number 21, then you must also know who signed it. Who was that?
PAULUS: As far as I can remember, that was signed by Hitler; and Keitel and Jodl initialed it.
: But, at any rate, signed by Hitler, like all directives-is that correct?
PAULUS: At any rate, most of the directives, unless they were signed by other people in his name.
- NELTE: In other words, I may conclude that the man who gave the orders was the Supreme Commander of the Wehrmacht, that is to say, Hitler?
PAULUS: That is correct.
- NELTE: From the statements of Von Brauchitsch and Halder we can see, in my opinion, that the General Staff of the Army with its large machinery was to work out ideas which Hitler conceived, work them out in detail. Do you not believe that?
PAULUS: That is correct. It had to relegate the orders which were given it by the Supreme Command to the proper departments.
- NELTE: It is clear that these orders were given to the High Command, that is, the Commander-in-Chief of the Wehrmacht. There was in all planning, as I can see from your statement also, in the execution of such aggressive plans a close collaboration between Hitler as Supreme Commander of the Wehrmacht and the General Staff of the Army. Is that correct?
PAULUS: This co-operation exists between the Supreme Command and all persons who are charged to carry out the orders of the Supreme Commander.
- NELTE: From your explanation I believe I can conclude that the incomplete plan which you found on 3 September 1940-that you have developed that, and that then, after you had achieved a certain measure of completeness, you presented it to the Supreme Commander, Hitler, personally, or through General Halder?
PAULUS: The detailed completion of the plan was presented by the Chief of the General Staff or by the Commander-in-Chief of the Army; then it was either accepted or rejected.
- NELTE: That is, it had to be accepted by HiMer or refused?
: Did I understand you correctly yesterday to say that you had already in the fall of 1940 understood that Hitler wanted to attack the Soviet Union?
PAULUS: I said yesterday that the preparation of that plan of operations was the theoretical preparation for an attack.
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- NELTE: But already at that time you thought that that was Hitler’s intention, didn’t you?
PAULUS: From the way in which this task was started one could see that, after the theoretical preparation, a practical application would follow.
- NELTE: Furthermore, you said yesterday that no news of the Abwehr had been received which would prove that there were any intentions of the Soviet Union to attack.
: Did anybody in the circle of the General Staff of the Army ever speak about these m. alters?
PAULUS: Yes, these matters were discussed. They had serious misgivings about them, but no reports about any visible preparations for war on the side of the Soviet Union were ever made known to me.
- NELTE: So you were firmly convinced that it was a straight attack on the Soviet Union?
PAULUS: At any rate, the indications did not exclude that.
THE PRESIDENT: The witness must speak more slowly.
- NELTE: The witness has said, if I understood correctly, that there were signs which did not exclude these inferences.
PAULUS: The order for the execution of this theoretical study of the conditions for attack was considered not only by myself but also by other informed experts as the first step for the preparation for an attack, that is to say, an aggressive attack on the Soviet Union.
- NELTE: In realizing these facts, did you or the General Staff of the Army or the Commander-in-Chief of the Army make any protests to Hitler about it?
PAULUS: Personally, I do not know in what form or whether the Commander-in-Chief of the Army made any protests.
- NELTE: Did you, yourself, speak about having any doubts to Generaloberst Halder or to Commander-in-Chief Von Brauchitsch?
PAULUS: If I judge correctly, then I believe that I am supposed to be here as a witness for the events with which the defendants are charged. I ask the Tribunal, therefore, to relieve me of the responsibility of answering these questions which are directed against myself.
: Field Marshal Paulus, you do not seem to know that you also belong to the circle of the defendants, because you belonged to the organization of the High Command which is indicted here as criminal.
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PAULUS: And, therefore, since I believe that I am here as witness for the events which have led to the indictment of these defendants here, I have asked to be relieved of answering this question which concerns myself.
- NELTE: I ask the Tribunal to decide.
THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal considers that you must answer the questions that have been put up to date.
PAULUS: Then may I ask for a repetition of the question, please?
- NELTE: I have asked you whether, since you realized that there were serious doubts, you talked to your chief, Halder, or to Commander-in-Chief Von Brauchitsch, about these things?
PAULUS: I cannot remember having talked to the Commander-in-Chief of the Army about it, but I did so with the Chief of the General Staff, Generaloberst Halder, who was my superior.
- NELTE: Was he of the same opinion?
PAULUS: Yes, he was of the same opinion, that is to say, of the opinion of great anxiety for such a plan.
- NELTE: For military or moral reasons?
PAULUS: For many reasons, both military and moral.
- NELTE: It is certain, then, that you and the Chief of Staff, Von Halder, realized these facts which would have stamped the war against Russia as a criminal attack and that you nevertheless did nothing against it? In your statement you have said that later you became Commander-in-Chief of the 6th Army; is that right?
- NELTE: With knowledge of all these facts just stated you accepted the command of an army which was to push against Stalingrad. Did you have any scruples about being made a tool of that attack which in your opinion was a criminal one?
PAULUS: As the situation at that time presented itself for the soldier, in connection also with the extraordinary propaganda which was put into play, I had at that time, as so many others believed, to do my duty toward my fatherland.
- NELTE: But you knew about the facts which were against that opinion?
PAULUS: The facts which became clear to me afterwards, due to my experiences as Commander of the 6th Army which found their climax at Stalingrad, those facts I did not know at that time. Also, about that criminal attack-that knowledge came later, when I thought about all the circumstances, because before I could only see part of the whole.
12 Feb. 46
- NELTE: Then I have to consider your expression “criminal attack” or any other expressions for the war mongers-I have to consider that as something that you found out later?
- NELTE: And I may say then that in spite of your having serious doubts and knowledge about the facts which marked the war against Russia as a criminal action of aggression, that in spite of your knowledge, you considered it your duty to take the command of the 6th Army and to hold Stalingrad until the last moment?
PAULUS: I have just explained that at that time, when I took over the command, I did not see the extent of the crime which was considered in the beginning and execution of this war of aggression; that I did not see the entire extent of it and could not see it, as my experiences as Commander of the 6th Army which I was able to gather at Stalingrad have shown to me later.
- NELTE: You speak of the extent, but the fact is that you knew the causes. Maybe you were one of the few who knew them. You have not mentioned that.
PAULUS: I did not know then. I knew the instigation of this war to be aggression, from the attitude of the greater part of the officers’ corps. In keeping with the prevailing concept I saw nothing unusual in the basing of the fate of a people and a nation upon power politics.
- NELTE: So you agreed to these ideologies?
PAULUS: Not to the tendency which appeared later, but I did not conclude therefrom that the fate of a country could be built upon power politics. It was a mistake that at this time, and in the 20th Century, only the democracies and the concept of the nationality principle were the decisive factors.
- NELTE: Would you grant to “others also, who were not so near to the sources, the good faith that they only wanted what eras best for their fatherland?
PAULUS: Yes, I do, of course.
- FRITZ SAUTER (Counsel for Defendants Von Schirach and Funk): Witness, yesterday you mentioned that you consider the Hitler Government as the guilty ones. Is that correct?
PAULUS: Yes, I have done so…
DR.SAUTER: In your written deposition which you made on 9 January 1946-in a prisoner-of-war camp it is said-there is nothing about that; at least, I have not found anything about it so far.
PAULUS: This letter has nothing to do with that. This is a letter to the Soviet Government, in which I explained several questions
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which came up within the 6th Army in Russia, and several of my own experiences.
- SAUTER: In this letter of 9 January 1946, you said explicitly- and I quote:
“Today, when the crimes of Hitler and his helpers are being judged, I find myself obliged to tell the Soviet Government everything which I have known and which may serve as proof of the guilt of the war criminals in the Nuremberg Trials.”
In spite of that, in this written declaration, which is very detailed, there is nothing about it.
THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Sauter, if you cross-examine the witness on this letter, you must put the letter in evidence, the whole letter.
- SAUTER: That is the statement which the witness has given, on the…
THE PRESIDENT: I have no doubt it is; all I say is, if you cross-examine him on the letter and put the letter to him, you must put the letter in evidence. You have a copy of the letter?
- SAUTER: Yes. It is in the statement which the Soviet Prosecutor yesterday put up to the witness and in regard to which the witness made the statement that he considers it correct and will repeat it.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes, I follow it. I was not sure whether it was actually put in or not or whether it was withdrawn upon the promise to produce the witness. Is the letter actually in?
DR.SAUTER: But the witness has said, after the Prosecutor asked him, that he will repeat that statement.
THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Willey, has the letter been put in?
- HAROLD B. WILLEY (American Secretary): It has not been put in, no.
THE PRESIDENT: Very well, you can go on cross-examining about it, but the document has got to be put in, that is all.
- SAUTER: [Turning to the witness.] Now I would like to know, Witness, what you mean by “Hitler Government”? Do you mean the leaders of the Party or do you mean the Reich Cabinet, or what exactly do you mean?
PAULUS: I mean everyone who is responsible.
DR.SAUTER: I would like you to answer the question more precisely.
PAULUS: In my statement yesterday I have only explained what I have seen myself, what I have experienced myself. I did not intend
12 Feb. 46
to make any statements about individual personalities in the Government because that would not be within my knowledge.
- SAUTER: Yes, but you spoke about the Hitler Government, did you not?
PAULUS: I just meant the concept of the Hitlerite leadership of the State.
- SAUTER: Of the Hitlerite leadership of State? That means, first, the Reich Cabinet, does it not?
PAULUS: Yes, inasmuch as it is responsible for the directives given by the Government.
- SAUTER: For this reason I would like to know the following:
The Defendant Funk, who is sitting over there, was also a member of the Reich Cabinet and the Defendant Von Schirach is also counted as a member of the Reich Cabinet by the Prosecution. Do you know anything as to whether the Defendant Flunk and the Defendant Von Schirach, like you, for instance, knew anything about these plans of Hitler?
PAULUS: I do not know.
- SAUTER: Do you know whether, during the war, since you were at the OKW, there were any meetings of the Cabinet at all?
PAULUS: I do not know that either.
- SAUTER: Do you know that Hitler, in the interests of secrecy of his war plans, even ordered that at conferences between himself and his military advisers the members of the Reich Cabinet, as for instance Funk, could not be admitted?
PAULUS: I do not know about that.
DR.SAUTER: Did it not come to your knowledge, perhaps through Herr Jodl or through Herr Keitel, that Hitler even forbade that civilian members of the Reich Cabinet should be present at such military conferences?
PAULUS: I do not know anything about that at all
- SAUTER: Another question. After Stalingrad was encircled and the situation had become hopeless, there were several telegrams of devotion sent to Hitler from inside the fortress. Do you know anything about that?
PAULUS: If you speak of telegrams of devotion, I only know about the end, when efforts were made to find a meaning for the catastrophe that had happened there, to find a meaning for all the suffering and dying of so many soldiers. Therefore these things had been depicted as heroism in the telegram, to be forever remembered. I am sorry, but at that time, due to the prevailing situation, I let that pass and did not stop it.
- SAUTER: These telegrams were yours, were they not?
12 Feb. 46
PAULUS: I do not know to which telegrams you are referring, with the exception of the last one.
- SAUTER: Several telegrams of devotion, in which there was a promise to hold out to the last man; those telegrams about which the German people were horrified. They are said to have your signature.
PAULUS I request to have them presented to me, because there is nothing known to me about them.
- SAUTER: Do you have any idea what was in the last telegram?
PAULUS: In the last telegram there was a short description of what the army had done, of the achievement of the army, and it was pointed out that it did not intend to capitulate, and that that should be an example for the future.
- SAUTER: The answer was, I think, your promotion to General Field Marshal?
PAULUS: I do not know that this was the answer.
- SAUTER: But you were promoted to General Field Marshal, and you still have that title because the statement which I have submitted to the Court is signed “Paulus, General Field Marshal.”
PAULUS: Well, I have to say…. Do you mean this statement?
- SAUTER: Yes, this statement.
PAULUS: Yes, I had to take that title which was conferred upon me.
- SAUTER: In this statement which I have submitted to the Court as proof, there is the last sentence:
“I bear the responsibility for the fact that I did not give due attention to the execution of the order of 14 January 1943 about the surrender of the prisoners”-namely, all Russian prisoners . . .
- SAUTER: “. . . to the Russians, and, furthermore, that I . . .”
- SAUTER: “. . . did not devote myself sufficiently to taking care of the prisoners.”-That is to say, the Russian prisoners.
I would like to hear your statement about the following: In that detailed letter why did you forget the several hundred thousands of German soldiers who were under your command and who lost under your command their freedom, their health, and their lives? There is no word about that.
- SAUTER: No?
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PAULUS: That is not the question in this letter. This letter to the Soviet Government was concerned with what happened to the Russian civilian population in the area of Stalingrad and the Russian prisoners of war. At this time I could not say anything about my soldiers, of course not.
- SAUTER: Not one word?
PAULUS: No, I could not speak here, because that had to be done at a different time. Of course, it is so that all the operational orders which led to the terrible conditions of Stalingrad, in spite of my objections…. About 20 January, as I said, I had made a report that conditions had reached such a measure of misery and of suffering through cold, hunger, and epidemics as to be unbearable, and that to continue the fighting would be beyond human possibility. The answer given to me by the Supreme Command was:
“Capitulation is impossible. The 6th Army will do its historic duty by fighting to the utmost, in order to make the reconstruction of the Eastern front possible.”
- SAUTER: And that is why you continued your efforts in the crime you have described until the very end?
PAULUS: That is correct.
- SAUTER: Because, according to your own statements, everything from the very beginning was a crime, which clearly and for a long time had come to your mind?
PAULUS: I did not say that it was clear to me as a crime from the very beginning, but that later I had this impression, as a result of retrospective considerations. My knowledge comes actually from my experience at Stalingrad.
DR.SAUTER: Then I would like to know, in closing: Was it not clear to you from the very beginning, when you were charged with the development of plans for the attack on Russia, as a specialist for such tasks-was it not clear to you from the very beginning that this attack on Russia could be made only under violations of international treaties, to which Germany was bound?
PAULUS: Yes, under violation of international law, but not under those conditions which developed later.
- SAUTER: No, I asked whether it was clear to you that this plan could only be executed by violation of international treaties?
PAULUS: It was clear to me that an attack of that kind could only be made under violation of the treaty which had existed with Russia since the fall of ’39.
- SAUTER: I have no more questions. Thank you.
[Dr. Exner approached the lectern.]
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THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Exner, I have already told the witness, and defendants’ counsel have been told over and over again, that it is of the utmost importance that they should ask their questions slowly, that they ask one question at a time, and that they should pause between the question and the answer and between the answer and the next question. Will you try to observe that rule, please?
PROFESSOR DR. FRANZ EXNER (Counsel for Defendant Jodl): Witness, in September of 1940 at the OKW you were charged with the execution of an operational study against Russia, that is, to continue work on a plan which existed already. Do you know about how strong the German forces in the East were at that time?
PAULUS: I can only clarify, in the OKII I have. . .
- EXNER: Yes, we have the OKH in mind.
PAULUS: I do not know any longer how strong the forces in the East were at that time. It was at a time shortly after the end of the campaign against France.
- EXNER: You do not know about how many divisions were in the East at that time for the protection of the German border?
PAULUS: No, I cannot remember that.
- EXNER: In February of 1941 our transports to the East began. Can you say how strong at that time the Russian forces were, along the German-Russian demarcation line and the Romanian-Russian border?
PAULUS: No, I cannot say that. The information which reached us about the Soviet Union and their forces was so extraordinarily scarce and incomplete that for a long time we had no clear picture at all.
- EXNER: But did not Halder at that time talk to the Fuehrer frequently about the strength and deployment of the Russian forces?
PAULUS: That is possible, but I cannot remember it, because I had nothing to do with these questions after that time-with the theoretical development of our ideas. In December the operations department of the Army took the work over.
- EXNER: At this time you had theoretical war exercises?
PAULUS: That Divas in the beginning of December.
- EXNER: Then you probably used, as a basis of these exercises, information you had about the actual strength of the enemy?
PAULUS: That was just what we assumed about the strength of the enemy.
- EXNER: Well, you have collaborated intensively with that operational plan. You have tried it out by theoretical war exercises.
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Tell me, what was the difference between your work and Jodl’s at that time?
PAULUS: I do not think I am able to judge that.
- EXNER: I do not understand. That was General Staff work, was it not?
PAULUS: Yes, it was General Staff work, with which I was charged by the Chief of Staff.
- EXNER: Yes, and the activity of Jodl as Chief of the Wehrmacht Fuhrungsstab…
PAULUS: The difference is that he had a view of the entire situation from the point where he was, whereas I could only see a small section, only that which I needed for my work, and that is all the information I received.
: But the activity in both cases was one of General Staff preparation for the war?
- EXNER:I would also be interested to know something about Stalingrad. In your written statement, or written declaration, you have said that Keitel and Jodl were guilty with regard to the prohibition of capitulation, which had such tragic consequences. How do you know that?
PAULUS: I just wanted to say it was the Supreme Command of the Wehrmacht who was responsible for that order. It had the responsibility, and it makes no difference whether it was one person or another. At any rate, the responsibility was with the office as such.
- EXNER: At any rate, you do not know anything about the personal participation of any one of these two gentlemen? You only thought of…
PAULUS: The OKW, which is represented by these persons.
- EXNER: Why, when the situation at Stalingrad was so hopeless and terrible-as you have indicated today-did you not, in spite of the order by the Fuehrer to the contrary, try to break out?
PAULUS: Because at that time it was represented to me that by holding out with the army which I led, the fate of the German people would be decided.
DR .EXNER: Do you know that you enjoyed the confidence of Hitler in a special measure?
PAULUS: I do not know about that.
- EXNER: Do you know that he had already decided that you would become the successor to Jodl if the Stalingrad operation would be successful, because he did not like to work with Jodl any more?
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PAULUS: I do not know about that in this form, but there was a rumor that late in the summer or early in the fall of 1942 a change was planned in the leadership. That was a rumor which the Chief of Staff of the Luftwaffe told me at that time, but I did not get any official information about that. There was other information, that I should be relieved of the command of that army and should be used to lead a new army group which was to be formed.
- EXNER: Do you remember the telegram white you sent to the Fuehrer when you were promoted to the rank of Field Marshal at Stalingrad?
PAULUS: I did not send a telegram then. After my promotion I did not send a telegram.
- EXNER: Have you not thanked the Fuehrer in any way?
- EXNER: That is quite contrary to statements which other people have made. Witness, you are said to be or to have been a teacher at the Military Academy at Moscow. Is that correct?
PAULUS: That is not right, either.
- EXNER: Did you have another position in Moscow?
PAULUS: I was never in Russia before the war.
- EXNER: But now, since you became. a prisoner of war?
PAULUS: I have been in a prisoner-of-war camp, like my other comrades.
- EXNER: Were you a member of the German Freedom Committee?
PAULUS: I was a member of a movement of German men, soldiers of all ranks and men of all classes, who had made it their aim to warn the German people at the last moment from the abyss, and to arouse them to overthrow this Hitler regime which had brought all this misery to many nations and especially to our German people. I have done that with the proclamation of 8 August 1944.
- EXNER: Did you do anything about that before?
PAULUS: No, I did not.
- EXNER: Thank you.
- LATERNSER: I have only a few more questions to ask the witness.
[Turning to the witness] Witness, did you not know when you took over your office as Chief Quartermaster I that these preparations which Major General Marx already had begun, and which you then continued, were intended only for an eventual case?
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PAULUS: One could think so, of course, but very soon in the course of the work things appeared which made it seem very probable that these theoretical preparations were to be put to practical use. In connection with the formulation of this plan of operations for an attack in which, from the very beginning, we were thinking in terms of using the Romanian area-during that very time we saw the dispatching of the first military mission with training groups and an entire Panzer division, just into that area for which the first theoretical preparations for an attack were being made. Thus, gradually, the impression became intensified that this was a plan which eventually would be executed.
- LATERNSER: Witness, the reason for my question is this: I believe the date which you mentioned, since which the plan was to have already been in existence, the fall of 1940, is a little early, isn’t it?
PAULUS: The documents which I was given for that plan of offense I explained in detail yesterday. They were submitted on 3 September, for upon the basis of these documents everything was developed, and everything was actually executed like that later.
- LATERNSER: I mean this: That first this plan was considered or conceived for an eventual case, and then at a later date, after a decision had been taken, it was used.
PAULUS: In retrospect, they fit together in perfect sequence, first the theoretical preparation, and then the practical preparation and execution.
- LATERNSER: Do you know Directive Number 18 of 12 November 1940, issued by the former Supreme Commander of the Wehrmacht?
PAULUS: I cannot remember it.
- LATERNSER: Mr. President, I refer now to a document which has already been submitted by the United States Prosecution, Number 444-PS. Handing the document to the witness7 I submit it to you, Witness. Page 8 is the one to which I am referring.
PAULUS: I cannot remember that I have ever seen this.
- LATERNSER: To inform the Court I am going to quote the passage-it is very short-which I have just shown to the witness. It is Page 8 of the Document 444-PS, this paragraph I quote: “5^ Russia: Political conferences with the aim of clarifying the attitude of Russia for the near future have been started.”
Witness, after you have seen that passage you will have to admit that I am right in saying that the time at which the decision was taken to attack the Soviet Union must have been later than the time you told us yesterday.
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PAULUS: I can only say from my personal experience and my own opinion as I look back now, following the entire development, that there was a clear plan from the beginning, the conception of that plan on 3 September 1940, then the directive of 21 December, and then its execution. Just at which precisely measurable date the decision was taken, I do not know, of course.
- LATERNSER: Did you know that in 1939 the Soviet Union marched into Poland with very strong forces which bore no relationship-according to opinions of German military experts- with the military problem to be solved at that time?
PAULUS: I only know of the fact that Soviet forces marched into Poland, but I have never heard anything about the size of the forces, nor have I ever heard anyone marvel at the strength of the forces that had taken part in the invasion.
- LATERNSER: Do you know that before the German deployment on the Eastern border many strong Soviet forces had been deployed along that border, especially very strong Panzer forces in the area of Bialystok?
PAULUS: No, in that form I have never known of this.
- LATERNSER: Were not the first divisions from West to East transferred only after very strong Soviet forces already were standing along the Eastern border?
PAULUS: About the relationship of troop movements from West to East-the practical execution of the plan-I do not know anything, because I had nothing to do with the practical execution. First of all, in the months of April and May, because of other duties, I was present in the High Command of the Army for only a very short time:
- LATERNSER: Witness, you said yesterday that at the end of March 1940 there was a conference at the Reich Chancellery, and there Generaloberst Halder gave you several points as a reason for the intended attack on Yugoslavia. You mentioned first the elimination of danger to the flank; second, the taking possession of the rail line to Nish, and you stressed the fact that in case of an attack against Russia the right flank would be free to move.
- LATERNSER: Were the reasons for this attack not different ones? Were not there reasons which were more important than those you mentioned?
PAULUS: I do not know of any others.
- LATERNSER: As to this attack upon Yugoslavia, was not that also to be done to relieve the Italians?
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PAULUS: Yes, of course. That was the initial reason why an operation against Greece was considered, and why that menace to the flank had to be eliminated if we were to push forward into Greece from Bulgaria.
- LATERNSER: Was not there at that time some concern about co-operation between Yugoslavia and Greece, which would have put England into the position of being able to land on the Greek coast and thereby gain a way to reach the Romanian oil fields?
PAULUS: Yes, but it would also have been impossible to carry out the Plan Barbarossa, which would have been menaced on its right flank and unprotected.
- LATERNSER: I have received different information. In the decision to attack Yugoslavia the Plan Barbarossa did not play the important role which you said yesterday it did.
PAULUS: The Plan Barbarossa could not have been carried out if the area of Greece and Serbia, after reinforcement by the British landing, would have fallen into the hands of the enemy.
THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps we can adjourn.
[A recess was taken.]
THE PRESIDENT: I am told that the interpreters, using the words “question” and “answer” before the question and answer, assist the shorthand writers and the press, and therefore the interpreters may continue to say “question” and “answer” before the question and answer is given. That only makes it more obvious that the real remedy for the difficulties which arise is for the counsel and witnesses to pause after the question has been asked and after the answer has been given, and it seems to the Tribunal that counsel and witnesses ought to be able to hear when the translation of the question has been given, and the witness can then give his answer. And when the translation of the answer has been given, which counsel can hear, he should then put a further question. Is it clear what I mean?
- LATERNSER: Witness, you were just speaking of the attack on Yugoslavia. If I understood you correctly, you said that this attack had to be carried out before the Plan Barbarossa could be undertaken, as otherwise there would have been a serious threat to the flanks. Did I understand you correctly?
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- LATERNSER: You said yesterday that the overthrow of the government in Yugoslavia was the cause for Hitler’s attack on Yugoslavia. Do you know whether any plans for such an attack existed even before the revolution in Yugoslavia?
PAULUS: That is not known to me.
- LATERNSER: Do you happen to know that particularly the plan of attack against Yugoslavia came at a very inconvenient time, and that it caused a delay of the attack against the Soviet Union?
PAULUS: That is exactly what I said yesterday. It caused a postponement of the attack on Russia, which had originally been planned for the middle of May, the weather permitting.
- LATERNSER: But then there is a sort of contradiction here, if you say that Me attack against Yugoslavia took place at that time although it was inconvenient, as the attack against Russia was to be made.
PAULUS: I do not see any contradiction in that. As I saw the situation then, the Yugoslavian Government had made an agreement with us which placed the railway line from Belgrade to Dish at our disposal, and that after that agreement was concluded, a revolution took place in Yugoslavia which created a different policy. Therefore, this plan of attack was believed necessary to eliminate a danger. In other words, I do not see that the decision to attack Yugoslavia and to delay Barbarossa form a contradiction. I merely see that one is a prerequisite for the execution of the other.
- LATERNSER: Witness, were you present at a conference of the General Staff on the Obersalzberg on 3 February 1941?
- LATERNSER: Are you aware of the fact that at that time the strength of the Soviet Russian deployment was estimated at 100 infantry divisions, 25 cavalry divisions, and 30 mechanized divisions, and that this was reported by Generaloberst Halder?
PAULUS: I cannot remember that. Nor am I sure whether Generaloberst Halder was actually present during that conference.
DR.LATERNSER: But, witness, such a conference must have been an unusual one?
DR.LATERNSER: And I believe that that conference must at least have given the impression that a very strong concentration of troops on the Eastern Front was in question.
PAULUS: I myself have at least no recollection of any such impression.
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- LATERNSER: At the beginning of that attack against the Soviet Union, were you still Chief Quartermaster?
DR.LATERNSER: As far as I have in the meantime been informed, it is part of the tasks of that service department to make positive suggestions regarding military operations on land, is that correct?
PAULUS: That was once the case during a different division of tasks. At the time when I was Chief Quartermaster I did not get that task as part of my job. The operational department was not under my control but immediately under the personal control of the Chief of the General Staff. The General Staff Department, first of all, gave me the task of running the training department and then the organization department, and that was in autumn 1941. Therefore, it was not part of my sphere of activities to make suggestions to the Chief of the General Staff regarding operations which were in progress, or any other operations. I merely had to carry out the special tasks which were given to me.
DR.LATERNSER: Witness, can you give information on the subject of how German prisoners of war were treated in the Soviet Union?
PAULUS: That question, about which such an incredible amount of propaganda has been made, which led to the suicide of so many German officers and enlisted personnel in the cauldron of Stalingrad, I have obligated myself to consider in the interest of truth. . .
THE PRESIDENT: One moment. Cross-examination is questioning on questions which are either relevant to the issues which the Tribunal has to try or questions relevant to the credibility of the vastness. Questions which relate to the treatment of prisoners in the Soviet Union have got nothing whatever to do with any of the issues which we have got to try, and they are not relevant to the credibility of the witness. The Tribunal, therefore, will not hear them.
- LATERNSER: Mr. President, may I give a reason why I ask that question? May I make a short statement?
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
- LATERNSER: I should like to put that question for the reason that I could ascertain how, actually, prisoners of war were treated, so that a large number of German families, who are extremely worried on that subject, could in that manner be given information on the subject, so that their worries would cease.
THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal is of opinion that that is not
a matter with which the Tribunal is concerned.
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- LATERNSER: I have no further questions to ask the witness.
- HEINZ FRITZ (Counsel for Defendant Fritzsche): Witness, do you know the Defendant Fritzsche?
PAULUS: Yes, I do.
- FRITZ: Are you aware of the fact that during the summer and autumn of 1942 he was with your army?
- FRITZ: Witness, in the course of this Trial there was a discussion about the command of the OKW which, as I hear, was also sharply criticized by you, according to which all the captured commissars of the Russian Army were to be shot. Are you aware of that order?
PAULUS: Yes. It came to my knowledge.
- FRITZ: Do you recollect that the Defendant Fritzsche, after he had become aware of that order in the course of his duties in the East, made a proposal to you and your I.C. officers, according to which that order should be cancelled as far as your army zone was concerned?
PAULUS: I cannot recollect that incident. I think it is perfectly possible that Herr Fritzsche did discuss that question with my staff, but when I took over that army on 20 January 1942, that order was not carried out in my zone. As far as I know, this order, which in practice did not become operative, was in fact cancelled later on.
- FRITZ: Perhaps, so as to refresh your memory, I might ask another question: Do you recollect, perhaps, that Fritzsche suggested to you or your I.C. officers the scattering of pamphlets with a corresponding content over the Russian front?
PAULUS: I personally cannot recollect that, but I consider it perfectly possible that such a discussion with the I.C. officer who was responsible for that sort of thing took place.
- FRITZ: Then one last question: As far as you know the character of the Defendant Fritzsche, would you consider it entirely possible and probable that he made this proposal?
PAULUS: Yes, indeed I do.
- ROBERT SERVATIUS (Counsel for the Leadership Corps of the Nazi Party): Witness, in your position you supported Hitler right to the very end, despite the fact that you knew that an aggressive war was being waged. How much could the political leaders know of this?
PAULUS: I cannot answer that question, because it is out of my knowledge.
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- SERVATIUS: What do you understand by political leaders?
PAULUS: May I ask another question in return? What does the defendant’s counsel understand by political leaders, concerning whom he asks the question?
- SERVATIUS: Witness, the organization of the Party does not seem to be clear to you. There is an organization of political leaders which is indicted in this Trial. They are to be declared criminal to this extent that, from the Reichsleiter to the Blockleiter, they may be punished because of their participation in the conspiracy to commit all the acts which are being tried here. This organization of political leaders is composed in such a way that g3 percent are local group leaders with their staffs and all their subordinates.
THE PRESIDENT: I do not think you can ask this witness about this. He does not know anything about it. He is not concerned with the charge against the political leadership. I do not think that is proper cross-examination at all.
DR.SERVATIUS: Mr. President, I was going to ask him to what extent these political leaders might have had knowledge, and then I was going to ask a second question, whether he was aware that he, as a witness, has contributed materially to the fact that these people, the political leaders, supported Hitler because they believed in the facade which the witness himself had assisted in setting up.
THE PRESIDENT: I have already answered you that he did not know to what extent the political leaders had been informed.
DR.SERVATIUS: I am also appearing for the Defendant Sauckel, who was responsible for the labor supply.
[Turning to the witness] Have you any knowledge as to whether German prisoners of war were used in Russian armament industries?
PAULUS: I have no authentic or personal information on that subject. The prisoners of war whom I myself have seen, in the camps where I have been, worked for the immediate requirements of the camp or fin the near vicinity of the camp. They worked at agriculture or forestry, and I know from the papers that some German units of workers, who had voluntarily formed groups and were working in industry, were proud of the results of their work. But I do not know in what branches of industry these people worked.
DR.SERVATIUS: I have no further questions to put to this witness.
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- EGON KUBUSCHOK (Counsel for the Reich Cabinet): A statement made by you yesterday has already been discussed once more today, namely, how much knowledge did individual members of the German Government have regarding important decisions? I gathered from your reply that you did not consider the Reich Government, regarding its personalities, one homogeneous body. In this Trial the difficulty repeatedly arises that normal conditions are assumed. One is especially prone to the conception that most important political and military decisions, as is otherwise customary, are made within a government body of important persons or within the military supreme command; in other words, that questions are discussed and decided within a group to which belongs a larger number of personalities. Witness, from the knowledge you have gained in your high military rank, could one assume this to be true of Adolf Hitler’s Government? Has Adolf Hitler, in his personality and methods, to speak politely, as a man of an unusual type, chiefly employed a completely different procedure here? Did he not always make his decisions independently or, at most, in closest consultation with a very few assistants, and can we not derive from that that leading personalities in political and military fields had no knowledge of impending events?
PAULUS: I must say to that that my military service in the General Staff of the Army did not give me an insight into the methods of the leadership of the State and of the Reich Government. My concept of a governing body of a nation is that of a united group who, regardless of the methods the state intends to use, have such a sense of responsibility toward the people for the deeds of the government, that they will not allow just anything to be done by even the head of the state-in this case Hitler with his usual brutal and autocratic ways-but, even if not required to do so, would themselves intervene in time with the necessary measures, at the very latest as soon as it was clear to the whole world that this government was being led by an insane criminal.
- KUBUSCHOK: Witness, you belong to the second circle of people which you mentioned. It is an established fact that you have not intervened, and, surely, you would have had important reasons for that. I believe that it would be better if, as far as other personalities are concerned, you would not pass judgment, but would answer my questions as far as actual facts are concerned.
My question was whether, according to your knowledge gained not only in your military position but also in your particular and leading position-whether they were right or wrong is unnecessary for establishing the fact-you knew what the methods in military and political matters were and what they were not. According to your knowledge, were resolutions made by a large body of military
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and political personalities who met and passed these resolutions, or were decisions generally made and resolutions passed in a very much smaller circle of people, probably sometimes only by Hitler alone?
PAULUS: How decisions of the Reich Government were made is not known to me. Therefore, in my previous answer, I have merely given you my general conception of this question and I believe that I have answered it therewith. I cannot imagine that one man alone could have done everything that was done. In order to exert his influence in a small circle he finally needed the cooperation of his immediate assistants. In other words, it was quite impossible for him to achieve his aims otherwise.
- KUBUSCHOK: As to the co-operation of his closest assistants, do you believe that some trained minister, a minister of labor or some other minister who was specially trained, was ever consulted by Hitler about his plans for aggression?
THE PRESIDENT: Counsel, the witness has already said that he does not know how the decisions of the Reich Government were arrived at. What he may think about it is really not relevant. He does not know.
- KUBUSCHOK: Witness, is it your impression that plans for aggression were made by Hitler many years in advance, or are you of the opinion that they were made to meet certain circumstances, on the basis of the intuition which you say he always had?
PAULUS: That is entirely outside my knowledge. My observations began on 3 September 1940 and continued from that time until January 1942. What I observed during that period is something I explained yesterday. About the time prior to that I am not informed.
DR.MARTIN HORN (Counsel for Defendant Von Ribbentrop): Witness, you said just now that you were a member of a body which had the aim of saving Germany from disaster. My question is: What possibilities to carry out these intentions were at the disposal of yourself and the other members of that group?
PAULUS: We had the possibility of making ourselves heard and understood by the German people, and believed it our duty to make known to the German people our view, not only of military events but also of the events of 20 July, and to tell them .of the convictions we had since gained; In this regard the initiative came chiefly from the ranks of the army I had led to Stalingrad. There we experienced how, through the orders of those military and political leaders against whom we were now taking a stand, more than 100,000 soldiers died of hunger, cold, and snow. There
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we experienced in concentrated form the horrors and terrors of a war of conquest.
- HORN: Did you have any other possibility apart from propaganda?
PAULUS: Apart from the possibility of making propaganda through radio and those newspapers which we had created, apart from that propaganda to the German people, we had no other facilities.
THE PRESIDENT: What has the Tribunal got to do with this?
- HORN: I merely wanted to ascertain what conclusions I could draw on the credibility of the witness.
THE PRESIDENT: I cannot see that it has any bearing on his credibility.
- HORN: It is perfectly possible that we have knowledge of other possibilities which were available, which the witness has not mentioned.
THE PRESIDENT: The Tribunal is of the opinion that what the witness thought or did when he was a prisoner of war in Russian hands has got nothing to do with his credibility, at least as far as the questions that you have asked are concerned, and they will not allow the questions to be put.
- HORN: May I have permission to ask the witness one more question?
THE PRESIDENT: Certainly.
- HORN: Did you, during the time you were a prisoner, have an opportunity to place your military experiences in any way at the disposal of anybody else?
PAULUS: In no way, in no case.
THE PRESIDENT: Then I understand that that concludes the cross-examination. Does the Soviet Prosecutor wish to ask any more questions?
GEN. RU1}ENKO: No, Mr. President. We consider that the questions have been comprehensively explained.
THE TRIBUNAL: (Mr. Francis Biddle, Member for the United States): General, you said that when you became Quartermaster General of the Army on 3 September 1940, you found an unfinished plan for an attack against the Soviet Union. Do you know how long that plan had been in preparation before you saw it?
PAULUS: I cannot say exactly how long the period of preparation lasted, but I would estimate that it lasted 2 to 3 weeks.
THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): Do you know who had given the orders for the preparation of the plan?
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PAULUS: I assume that they originated from the same source, namely, the OKW the High Command of the Army. The Chief of the General Staff of the Army had given to Major General Marx the same documents that he had given me.
THE TRIBUNAL (Mr. Biddle): At the conferences on the Plan Barbarossa how many members of the General Staff and High Command of the German Armed Forces were usually present?
PAULUS: The departments concerned, the Operational Department, the Department for Foreign Armies, the General Quartermaster for Supplies, and the Chief of Transportation. Those were generally the chief departments which were involved.
THE TRIBUNAL: (Mr.Biddle): How many members of the General Staff and High Command of the German Armed Forces were familiar with the orders and directives as they were being signed?
PAULUS: In the course of time, that is, up to December, while the actual marching orders were being prepared, more or less, all General Staff officers had knowledge of the plan. Just how many had been informed previously, in the individual periods, is something which I can no longer say exactly.
THE TRIBUNAL (major General I.T. Nikitchenko, Member for the U.S.S.R.): What exactly did the General Staff of the German Army represent? Did it deal exclusively with the elaboration of technical questions, was it the apparatus elaborating technical problems according to instructions of the Supreme Command, or, again, was the General Staff an organization which prepared, elaborated, and submitted its findings to the Supreme Command independently?
PAULUS: It was a technical executive body which had the task of carrying out existing instructions.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): Therefore the General-Staff was merely a “ethical apparatus?
PAULUS: That is how it was in practice. The General Staff, as such, was an advisory organization to the Supreme Commander of the Army, and not an executive body.
THE TRIBUNAL: (Gen. Nikitchenko): To what extent did the General Staff conscientiously carry out the instructions received from the Supreme Command?
PAULUS: They carried out these instructions absolutely.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): Did any conflict exist between the General Staff and the Supreme Command?
PAULUS: It is a known fact that certain differences of opinion did exist, although I am unable to explain that in detail. At any
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rate, I know through my immediate superior that he had frequently had differences of opinion with the Supreme Command of the German Armed Forces.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): Could such officers remain? Did they, in fact, remain in the service of the General Staff if they disagreed with the policy of the Supreme Command?
PAULUS: Political questions did not arise in that connection. Generally speaking, political questions were not discussed in the circle of the Army Supreme Command.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): I am not speaking of political questions in the narrow sense of the word. I am speaking of the policy of planning for war, of the policy of preparations and aggression. That is what I had in mind. Was it intended, in case you know about it, to transform that part of the Soviet Union, occupied by the German Forces?
PAULUS: I never did know what the itemized plans were. My knowledge is restricted to a knowledge of such plans as were contained in the so-called Green Folder for the exploitation of the country.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): What do you mean by exploitation?
PAULUS: The economic exploitation of the country, so that by utilizing its resources one could bring the war in the West to a close and also to guarantee future supremacy in Europe.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): Did the nature of the exploitation differ from the economic exploitation applied inside Germany?
PAULUS: In that respect I have no personal impressions, since l only led that army in Russia for three-quarters of a year; and I was captured early, in January 1943.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): What did you know of the directives issued by Government organizations in Germany and by the Supreme Command, concerning the treatment of the Soviet population by the Army?
PAULUS: I remember that instructions did appear, but I cannot recollect the date at the moment. In those instructions definite rules were given for the manner of conducting the war in the East. I believe that this principal decree was included in that so-called Green Folder, but there may have been separate and special orders to the effect that no particular consideration should be shown the population.
THE TRIBUNAL (Gen. Nikitchenko): What do you mean by “not to show particular consideration”-or perhaps the translation is not quite correct?
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PAULUS: That meant that only military necessities should be considered a basis for all measures that were taken.
THE PRESIDENT: Were there any divisions under your command consisting entirely of SS troops?
PAULUS: During the time I led the Army I had no SS troops at all under my command, as I remember. Even in the cauldron at Stalingrad, where I had 20 German infantry, armored, and motorized divisions, and two Romanian divisions, there were no SS units.
THE PRESIDENT: I understand that the SA did not form units, did they? The SA?
PAULUS: I have never heard of SA units, but the existence of SS units is a known fact.
THE PRESIDENT: And did you have any branches of the Gestapo attached to your army?
PAULUS: No, I did not have those either.
THE PRESIDENT: General Rudenko, I did ask you whether you had any questions to ask, and you said no, I take it.
THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness can retire.
[The witness left the stand, and Gen. Zorya approached the lectern.]
THE PRESIDENT: Please, go on, General.
GEN. ZORYA: Yesterday, I stopped at the questions connected with the relations between the fascist conspirators and the Romanian aggressors. It seems to me that now is the most opportune moment to read into the Record the testimony of Ion Antonescu, which the Soviet Prosecution has at its disposal.
The interrogation of Ion Antonescu was conducted in conformance with the laws of the Soviet Union and I present to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-153 (Document Number USSR153) the record of his deposition, which is of exceptional importance in making clear the characteristics of the relationship between Germany and her satellites. I consider it necessary to read the greater part of these depositions, beginning with the second paragraph on Page 1 of the record. It corresponds to Pages 63 and 64 of the document book. I quote:
“Throughout the entire period during which I held office in Romania”-testifies Ion Antonescu-“I followed the policy of strengthening the alliance with Germany and resorted to her help for retraining and rearming the Romanian army. For
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this purpose I had several meetings with Hitler. The first meeting with Hitler took place in November 1940, soon after I became the head of the Romanian State. This meeting took place on my initiative, in Berlin, at Hitler’s official residence, in the presence of the German Foreign Minister, Ribbentrop, and Hitler’s personal interpreter, Schmidt. The conversation with Hitler lasted over 4 hours.
“I assured Hitler that Romania remained true to the previously concluded agreement regarding Romania’s adherence to the Tripartite Pact.
“In reply to my assurances of loyalty to the pact with Germany, Hitler declared that the German soldiers would guarantee the frontiers of Romania.
“At the same time, Hitler told me that the Vienna arbitration should not be considered as final and thus gave me to understand that Romania could count on a revision of the decision previously taken in Vienna, on the question of Transylvania.
“Hitler and I agreed that the German Military Mission in Romania should continue its work of reconstructing the Romanian Army on German lines.
“In the same way I also concluded an economic agreement, in accordance with which the Germans would at a later date supply Romania with Messerschmidts 109, tanks, tractors, antiaircraft and antitank guns, automatic rifles, and other armaments, while they, in return, would receive from Romania wheat and oil for the needs of the German armies.
“To the question put to me as to whether this, my first conversation with Hitler, could be regarded as the beginning of my agreement with the Germans concerning the preparations for war against the Soviet Union-I replied in the affirmative. There is no doubt that Hitler had this fact in mind, when he elaborated his plans for the attack on the Soviet Union.
“In January 1941, through the offices of the German Minister in Romania, Fabricius, I was invited to Germany and had my second meeting with Hitler at Berchtesgaden. The following persons were present: Ribbentrop, Fabricius, and the newly appointed German Minister to Bucharest, Killinger. Besides these, Field Marshal Keitel and General Jodl were also present as representing the German Armed Forces.
“At the beginning of the conversation Hitler introduced Killinger to me, emphasizing that the latter was one of his closest friends. After this, Hitler described the military situation in the Balkans and declared that Mussolini had appealed to him for help in connection with the Italian failures in the war
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against Greece, and that he, Hitler, intended to give this help to Italy.
“While on this subject Hitler asked me to allow the German troops concentrated on Hungarian territory to pass through Romania, so that they could render speedy assistance to the Italians.
“Knowing that the passage of German troops through Romania to the Balkans would constitute an unfriendly act towards the Soviet Union, I asked Hitler what, in his opinion, would be the subsequent reaction of the Soviet Government.
“Hitler reminded me that at our first meeting, in November 1940, he had already given appropriate guarantees to Romania and had taken upon himself the obligation of protecting Romania by force of arms.
“I expressed my fears that the passage of German troops through Romania might serve as a pretext for military operations on the part of the Soviet Union, and that Romania would then be in a difficult position since the Romanian Army had not been mobilized.
“Hitler announced that he would give orders for some of the German troops intended for participation in the operations against Greece to be left in Romania. Hitler also stressed that, according to the information at his disposal, the Soviet Union did not intend to fight either Germany or Romania.
“Satisfied with Hitler’s declaration, I agreed to the passage of German troops through Romanian territory.
“General Jodl, who was present at this conference, described to me the strategic situation of the German Army and stressed the necessity for an attack against Greece launched from Bulgaria.
“My third meeting with Hitler took place in Munich in May 1941.
“At this meeting at which, in addition to ourselves, there were present Ribbentrop and Hitler’s personal interpreter, Schmidt, we reached a final agreement with regard to a joint attack on the Soviet Union.
“Hitler informed me that he had decided on an armed attack on the Soviet Union. ‘Once we have prepared this attack,’ said Hitler, ‘we must carry it out without warning, along the entire extent of the Soviet frontier, from the Black to the Baltic Seas.’
“The unexpectedness of the military attack-Hitler went on to say-would in a short time give Germany and Romania a chance to liquidate one of our most dangerous adversaries.
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“As a result of his military plans, Hitler suggested the use of Romanian territory for concentrations of German troops, and, at the same time, he requested me to participate directly in the attack on the Soviet Union.
“Hitler stressed the point that Romania must not remain outside this war, for, if she wished to have Bessarabia and North Bukovina returned to her, she had no other alternative but to fight on Germany’s side. At the same time he pointed out that, in return for our assistance in the war, Romania would be allowed to occupy and administer other Soviet territories, right up to the River Dnieper.
“Since Hitler’s offer to initiate a joint campaign against the U.S.S.R. corresponded to my own aggressive intentions, I announced my agreement to participate in the attack on the Soviet Union and pledged myself to prepare the necessary number of Romanian troops and, at the same time, to increase deliveries of the oil and food required by the German armies. “Before Hitler and I took the decision to attack Russia, I asked Hitler whether he had any understanding with Hungary regarding her participation in the war.
“Hitler replied that the Hungarians had already given their consent to participate in the war against the U.S.S.R. in alliance with Germany. When, exactly, the Germans had agreed on this joint attack with the Hungarians, Hitler did not specify.
“On my return from Munich to Bucharest I began active preparations for the coming campaign.”
Antonescu concludes his testimony in the following manner-I refer to Page 67 in the document book, the last paragraph of the testimony.
“After the Romanian troops under my supreme command had invaded the Soviet territory Hitler sent me a letter in which he expressed his gratitude to me and to the Romanian army for the assistance given.
“Signed, Marshal Antonescu.”
The date of the beginning of Romanian preparations for war against the U.S.S.R. can be established from the depositions furnished by the former Vice Minister, Mihai Antonescu, who was also interrogated by the Soviet authorities upon the request of the Soviet Prosecution: I now submit his testimony as Exhibit Number USSR-152 (Document Number USSR-152). I shall not quote these depositions in detail since their greater part is a repetition of some of the facts described already in the testimony of Ion Antonescu. I shall only refer to a few paragraphs. I would refer you to Page 1
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of the testimony which is translated into Russian, Paragraphs 1, 2, and 5. This corresponds to Page 68 of the document book:
“In November 1940 Marshal Antonescu, accompanied by the then Minister for Foreign Affairs, Prince Studza, left for Germany, where he had a meeting with Hitler.
“During the negotiations with Hitler, Marshal Antonescu signed the agreement for Romania’s adherence to the Tripartite Pact and received Hitler’s promise for the later revision, in favor of Romania, of the decisions of the Vienna Arbitration Treaty.
“The first journey of Marshal Antonescu was the initial step of a policy which subsequently led to a joint German and Romanian attack on the Soviet Union.”
Your Honors, the evidence of the witness, Paulus, as well as the testimonies of Ion Antonescu and Mihai Antonescu, which have just been submitted to the Tribunal, justify the Soviet Prosecution in making the following statement:
- The decision to send to Romania a military mission of the German General Staff for the reorganization of the Romanian Army, in order to prepare for and subsequently to attack the U.S.S.R., was taken no later than September 1940, that is, no less than 9 months prior to the attack on the U.S.S.R. 2. In November of the same year, Romanian war preparations had been fully developed.
THE PRESIDENT: Perhaps that would be a good time to break off. [The Tribunal recessed until 1400 hours.]
12 Feb. 46
GEN. ZORYA: Mr. President, at a further stage in my statement I had intended presenting to the Tribunal a statement of General Buschenhagen, general of the former German Army. I do not, however, intend to do so now, since the Soviet Prosecution has the possibility of examining this witness in court during the session. I, on my part, request your permission to have this witness brought to the court for examination.
THE PRESIDENT: You wish to call him now?
GEN. ZORYA: Yes, that would be convenient, in view of several technical reasons, and would facilitate the task of the Prosecution.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes, certainly.
[The witness, Buschenhagen, took the stand.]
THE PRESIDENT: What is your name?
ERICH BUSCHENHAGEN (Witness): Erich Buschenhagen.
THE PRESIDENT: Will you repeat this oath after me: “I swear by God-the Almighty and Omniscient-that I will speak the pure truth-and will withhold and add nothing.”
[The witness repeated the oath in German.]
GEN. ZORYA: Witness, will you tell the Tribunal when and where you were born?
BUSCHENHAGEN: I was born on 8 December 1895 in Strasbourg, in Alsace.
GEN. ZORYA: Will you name your last military rank, please.
BUSCHENHAGEN: I was general in the infantry in the German Army. My last position was that of Commanding General of the 52d Army Corps.
GEN. ZORYA: Will you tell us please, did you on 26 December 1945 appeal to us with a statement in connection with the Helsinki trials?
GEN. ZORYA: Do you confirm this statement now?
BUSCHENHAGEN: Yes, I do.
GEN. ZORYA: Will you please tell us what you know about the preparations made by fascist Germany for attacking the Soviet Union?
BUSCHENHAGEN: At the end of December 1940, in my position as Chief of the General Staff of the German forces in Norway, I was called to the OKH, where the then Chief of the General Staff, Generaloberst Halder, had a conference with the chiefs of general
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staffs of the army groups and of the independent armies, one of which was mine. At this conference we were informed of the OKW’s Directive Number 21, the Plan Barbarossa, which was issued on 18 December 1940. We were given in lectures the basic reasons for the intended operations against Soviet Russia.
From this directive I learned that troops of my army also would take part in this operation. Therefore, I was especially interested in one speech made by the Chief of Staff of the Finnish Army, Lieutenant General Heinrichs, who was then also with the OKH. He spoke at that time about the military actions in the winter war between Finland and the Soviet Union. He drew a picture of the methods of warfare and the fighting value of the Soviet Army and also of the Finnish troops.
General Heinrichs also had conferences with Generaloberst Halder at that time, in which I did not take part myself, but I assume that they were concerned with possible co-operation between the Finnish and German troops in case of a conflict between Germany and the Soviet Union. There existed since the fall of 1940 a military cooperation between Germany and Finland, and the German Air Force had made arrangements with the Finnish General Staff for through traffic from northern Norway to the Finnish harbors in the transport of men and material. As the result of conferences, which the German military attaché had held in Helsinki by order of the OKW, this through traffic was extended in the winter of 1940 to a general through traffic of the German Wehrmacht from northern Norway to the Finnish Baltic seaports. In order to carry out this traffic, a German Army administration center was set up in the main city of Lapland, Rovanjemi, and a German army transport unit was transferred to the Arctic Strait of Rovanjemi and Petsamo-Rovanjemi. Furthermore, offices for supply were installed along this Arctic Sea route and along the railroad which led from Rovanjemi to ports on the Finnish south coast.
In December to January 1940-41, I had, with the OKW, discussions about details of the participation of troops from Norway together with Finnish troops in attacks against the Soviet Union.
GEN. ZORYA: Didn’t you also have conferences with the Finnish General Staff about joint operations against the Soviet Union?
BUSCHENHAGEN: Yes, I did.
GEN. ZORYA: Tell us, who instructed you to negotiate with the Finnish Government and what course did these negotiations follow?
BUSCHENHAGEN: I had orders and authorizations from the OKW, which was the immediate superior of myself and my army. In February 1941 I received-after the basic facts had been cleared in regard to the participation of the troops from Norway based in
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Finland-I received the order to travel to Helsinki and to get in touch there, personally, with the Finnish General Staff and to discuss with them these operations from middle and northern Finland.
On 18 February 1941 I reached Helsinki and on the 2 following days, I had conferences with the Finnish Chief of General Staff, General Heinrichs, his deputy, General Airo, and the Chief of the Operations Detachment of the Finnish General Staff, Colonel Tapola. In these conferences we discussed the possibilities for operations from middle and northern Finland, especially from the area around Kuusamo and Rovanjemi; also from the area of Petsamo. These conferences led to an agreement of the different opinions.
After these conferences I travelled, together with the Chief of the Operation Detachment of the Finnish General Staff, Colonel Tapola, to middle and northern Finland in order to study the area of Urinsalmo-Kuusamo, the area east of Rovanjami-Petsamo, the terrain, the possibilities for deployment and billeting, and for operations from that sector. For these reconnaissance trips the local Finnish commanders were present. The trip ended on 28 February in Torneo, on the Finnish-Swedish border. In a final conference it was determined that an operation from the area of Kuusamo and Helsinki and an operation from the area east of Rovanjemi in the direction of Basikamo would prove successful; that, on the other hand, the operations from Petsamo towards Rovanjemi would have considerable difficulty with the terrain. That was the end of my first series of conferences with the Finnish General Staff.
As a result of these discussions there was worked out by the German High Command of Norway a plan of operations for an operation from the Finnish areas. The operational study was presented to the OKW and found its approval. It then received through the High Command of Norway the name of “Blauluchs.”
In May, that is, on 24 May, I met the Finnish Chief of Staff Heinrichs, who had been invited to the Fuehrer’s headquarters at Brandenburg and flew with him to Munich, where I had with him and his chief of the Operational Department of the Finnish General Staff, Colonel Tapola, a discussion in preparation for another conference at Salzburg.
On the 25th there was at Salzburg a conference between the OKW, Field Marshal Keitel, Generaloberst Jodl on the one side, and on the other, Lieutenant General Heinrichs and Colonel Tapola, at which the basic plans for co-operation between German and Finnish troops were laid down.
After this conference I travelled, together with General Heinrichs, to Berlin. There we had further conferences at the Economic Armament Office of the OKW, as to the delivery of material to the Finnish Army. There were also conferences with the General Staff
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of the Air Force concerning joint questions of the air war and the reinforcement of the Finnish Air Force with materiel. General Heinrichs, after these discussions, also had a meeting with Generaloberst Halder, in which I did not participate.
For the third time I met the Finnish General Staff on 2 June. In my statement of 26 December I said that this conference took place at the end of April or the beginning of May; that was a mistake. As a matter of fact, it took place on 2 June.
At these conferences, which again took place between General Heinrichs, General Halder, and Colonel Tapola, the details of this collaboration were worked out, such as the timetable, the schedule, measures of secrecy as to the Finnish mobilization; there it was decided that the Finnish mobilization should first take the form of reinforcement of the border patrols, and then the form of further enlistments for the military training of reservists and reserve officers; a decision was also reached about the deployment and formation of German-Finnish forces in such a way that the main Finnish forces, under the command of Field Marshal Mannerheim in the south, should operate together with the German Army Group North, coming from East Prussia, in the direction of Leningrad and also towards the east of Lake Ladoga.
The other Finnish forces were to be under the command of Generaloberst Von Falkenhorst north of the Rivers Ulo and Ulojoki. For this army of Generaloberst Von Falkenhorst there were three directions of attack; a southern group from the area of Kuusamo through Kerskienski against the Murmansk railroad; the middle group east of Rovanjemi through Salla Kandalaksha and finally, a northern group starting from around Petsamo against Murmansk. There was complete agreement on all these questions and also there were details discussed about exchange of information, about the use of Finnish means of transportation and by representatives of the Air Force about joint questions of air warfare and about the use of Finnish airports by the German Air Force.
After these discussions I returned to Germany in order to work out their results and put them into action on behalf of Germany. Then again, on 12 or 13 July I flew to Helsinki for the purpose of conferring with Lieutenant General Erfurt, who was the German liaison officer with the Finnish Armed Forces. We met General Heinrichs at Helsinki and gave him a memorandum on the points which we had agreed upon in previous conferences. He agreed to these points, except for a minor details Then I turned over my duties as liaison officer with the Finnish General Staff to Lieutenant General Erfurt, to take up my activities as Chief of General Staff of the German Army in Lapland.
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GEN. ZORYA: I should like to ask you a last question. If it is not too difficult for you, will you please indicate what was the exact character of these preparations of the OKW and the Finnish General Staff7 More especially, at the planning of these operations was the necessity of defense taken into consideration?
BUSCHENHAGEN: All agreements between the OKW and the Finnish General Staff had as their sole purpose from the very beginning the participation of the Finnish Army and the German troops on Finnish territory in the aggressive war against the Soviet Union. There was no doubt about that. If the Finnish General Staff, to the outside world, always pointed out that all these measures had only the character of defense measures, that was just camouflage. There was-from the very beginning-no doubt among the Finnish General Staff that all these preparations would serve only in the attack against the Soviet Union, for all the preparations that we made pointed in that same direction, namely, the plans for mobilization; above all, the objectives for the attack. Nobody ever reckoned with the possibility of a Russian attack on Finland.
Since, for cogent military reasons, the operations for attack from Finnish territory could start only 8 to 10 days after the beginning of the attack against Russia, certain security measures were taken during and after the attack, but the whole formation and lining-up of the troops was for offensive and not defensive purposes. I believe you can see sufficiently from that the aggressive character of all these preparations.
GET. ZORYA: I have no further questions to ask.
THE PRESIDENT: Does the French prosecutor wish to ask any questions?
FRENCH PROSECUTOR: No questions.
THE PRESIDENT: Does the United States Prosecution wish to ask any questions?
UNITED STATES PROSECUTOR: No questions.
THE PRESIDENT: Do defendants’ counsel wish to cross-examine?
- LATERNSER: Witness, in this Trial a group of people are under indictment with the purpose of declaring them criminals. Included in this group, to state it shortly, are all the commanders-in-chief of the several parts of the Armed Forces.
Have you ever had any knowledge before the beginning of the attack against the Soviet Union that an order came out, according to which the captured commissary had to be executed?
- LATERNSER: Did you at any time speak to your commanding general, Generaloberst Von Falkenhorst, concerning this order?
12 Feb. 46
- LATERNSER: What opinion did Generaloberst Von Falkenhorst and yourself hold concerning this order?
BUSCHENHAGEN: That this was a criminal order.
LATERNSER: Since you had that opinion, I would like to ask you whether, within your army, this order was carried out?
BUSCHENHAGEN: Actually it was not carried out.
- LATERNSER: For what reasons was it not carried out? Perhaps because the commander and his chief and you, Witness, were of the opinion that this order should not be carried out or because it would not have been practicable, for, as it is known, the Soviet commissars fought until the last and fell and, in cases where they were captured, their papers, which showed them to be commissars, had already been destroyed?
For what reason was this order not actually carried out?
BUSCHENHAGEN: Firstly, in view of the line taken by Generaloberst Von Falkenhorst and myself, comments were added to it before it was passed on, in other words, we let the troops know that inwardly we were not in agreement with it-and we found our commanding generals to show a full understanding. Secondly, because of the reason given by you, because, as a matter of fact, not a single commissar fell into our hands, as far as I can remember.
- LATERNSER: Witness, do you know any other commanders who had the same attitude as you had with regard to this order?
- LATERNSER: Do you answer “no” because you did not speak to others?
BUSCHENHAGEN: I did not speak to others because in Norway I was so isolated from other armies that I had no opportunity of speaking to others.
DR.LATERNSER: Witness, aren’t you of the opinion that the great majority of the commanding generals had the same attitude concerning this order as you and your commanding general?
BUSCHENHAGEN: I cannot answer that because I cannot speak the minds of the others.
- LATERNSER: I have no further questions.
THE PRESIDENT: Do any other defendants’ counsel wish to ask questions? General, do you wish to ask any questions in re-examination?
GET. ZORYA: I have no further questions.
12 Feb. 46
THE PRESIDENT: Then the witness will retire.
[The witness left the stand.]
: This morning I had to stop before reading the testimony of Pantazi, Romania’s former Minister of War, which I intend to present to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-154 (Document NumberUSSR-154). Pantazi describes in detail the preparations of Romania for war. I would ask you to accept this testimony as evidence. You will find it on Page 71 of the document book. I shall now read such extracts of this document as are of interest to us:
“Romania’s preparations for war against the Soviet Union began in November 1940 when, in accordance with the agreement signed by Marshal Antonescu in Bucharest, regarding Romania’s adherence to the Tripartite Pact, there arrived in Bucharest German military missions, consisting of groups of German officer-instructors; those for the army were headed by General Hansen, those for the Air Force by Major General Speidel.
“With the arrival of the German military missions in Romania, the Chief of the General Staff of the Romanian Army, General Joanitiu, acting on the orders of Antonescu, issued an order to the army, regarding the admission of German officer instructors into units and groups, for the purpose of reorganizing and re-educating the Romanian forces in accordance with the code of regulations of the German Army.
“At the same time, and still acting on Marshal Antonescu’s orders, all reserve officers of the Romanian Army were called up for a course of 2 months of retraining and underwent instruction under German direction.
“During the period of the retraining of officers, the General Staff of the Romanian Army drafted a plan for calling up into the Army 12 age groups due for mobilization in case of war, the training of all these groups to be carried out in accordance with the demands of the code of regulations of the German Army, to be completed by 1 July 1941.
“The higher Romanian officers underwent similar retraining in their respective branches of the service.
“In this way, under German leadership and prior to the beginning of the war by Germany and Romania against the Soviet Union, the whole of the Romanian Army and Air Force were reorganized and retrained along German lines.”
I shall omit two paragraphs which are of no importance and I pass to the second paragraph, which you will find on Page 72 in the document book. These are also depositions of Pantazi.
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THE PRESIDENT: General, in view of the evidence which you have already presented to the Tribunal, the Tribunal is inclined to think you could omit these details of the preparations made in Romania and go on to the place where you deal with the number of German divisions who deployed on the Romanian frontier.
GEN. ZORYA: Yes, this question is of importance. I hesitate at present to point out the exact passage which deals with it-it must be on Page 74 in the document book:
“In this connection the following units which were already mobilized and ready for action against the Soviet Union were, in February 1941, on Marshal Antonescu’s orders, directed to the frontiers of North Bukovina and Bessarabia: The 4th Alpine Rifle Division, the 7th, 8th, and 21st Infantry Divisions, the Infantry Division of the Guards, a cavalry corps and another infantry division whose name I do not recall at present. In addition, 3 German divisions, selected from the 21 German divisions moving to Greece across Romania, were sent to the U.S.S.R. frontier.”
I omit several paragraphs. On Page 73 of your book of documents we find the following extract from Pantazi’s testimony, marked in pencil:
“In accordance with instructions from Marshal Antonescu in May 1941, the following divisions were likewise sent to the frontier: The Frontier Division, the 3rd and 1st Alpine Rifle Divisions, the 13th Infantry Division, and a Panzer division. Concurrently with these divisions the Germans transferred to the U.S.S.R. frontier seven German divisions.
“Consequently, prior to the beginning of the Romanian and German attack on the Soviet Union, there were concentrated on the frontier between Romania and the U.S.S.R. 12 Romanian and 10 German divisions, totalling up to 600,000 men.”
Thus the documents which have just been submitted to the Tribunal justify the assertion that Romania’s preparations for aggression against the Soviet Union on the directions received from the staff of the fascist conspirators had begun long before they found expression on paper in Plan Barbarossa. Having attacked the Soviet Union, Hitler’s lackeys expected gratitude from their masters for services rendered. On 27 July 1941 Hitler sent a letter addressed to Antonescu expressing gratitude to him and to his army.
I submit to the Tribunal this letter from Hitler, addressed to Antonescu as Exhibit Number USSR-237 (Document Number USSR237). Hitler writes in this letter-Page 1 of the Russian translation of the letter, Paragraph 3, Page 74 in the document book presented to the Tribunal:
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“To congratulate you wholeheartedly on this great success is for me personally as great a happiness as it is a satisfaction easy to understand. The winning back of Bessarabia will be the most natural reward for your effort and those of your gallant troops.”
The promises of the fascist bosses were not limited to Bessarabia alone.
,I beg for permission to return to the conversation of 12 February 1942, between Antonescu and the Defendant Ribbentrop. This conversation is set forth in a document which I presented as Exhibit Number USSR-233 (Document USSR-233). I am now referring to Paragraph 3 of the Russian translation of this document-3rd paragraph from the top of this page-which you will find on Page 61 of the document book. It consists of the following entry made by Antonescu:
“I reminded Herr Von Ribbentrop that, at the banquet given by him, he raised his glass to the happiness of a great Romania, to which I replied that we have entered into an alliance with the Axis in order to create a ‘Great Romania.’ ”
What, then, was this “Great Romania” to represent, to which the Defendant Ribbentrop had raised his glass?
This can be seen from the document which I now submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-242 (Document USSR-242). This document is one of Antonescu’s letters-a copy of a letter-to Hitler, dated 17 August 1941. I request you to read this document into the record, and I consider it necessary to read Paragraphs 2 and 4 from it, which correspond to Page 2 of the Russian translation in the document book in your possession. The corresponding text is on Page 78. I quote Paragraph 2. Antonescu writes:
“In compliance with the wish of Your Excellency, I take upon myself the responsibility for guarding the territory between the Rivers Dniester and Dnieper, for maintaining order there, and for its security, in which connection it will only be necessary to delineate a boundary to this territory on the north.”
Paragraph 4 of this letter:
“In order to maintain order and to control the economic exploitation of the occupied territory, and foreseeing the continuation of the war, I consider it absolutely necessary that unity of command should be established.
“I therefore beg Your Excellency to give precise instructions defining my rights and responsibilities for the administration and economic exploitation of the territory between the Rivers Dniester and Bug, as well as for the guarding, the maintenance
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of order and the security of the whole territory between the Rivers Dniester and Dnieper.
“I beg you, Your Excellency, to accept the best assurances from your devoted Marshal Antonescu.”
Two days after this letter was written Antonescu appointed a governor of the occupied regions of the Soviet Union, to which he gave the name of the “Transnistrian” regions.
I present to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-295 (Document Number USSR-295), the testimony of this “governor,” George Alexianu, who was taken prisoner by The Red Army, and beg you to accept it as evidence.
Alexianu, giving details of his nomination, testifies as follows- Page 2, Paragraph 2, of the Russian text, Page 79 in the document book which is in your possession. I quote:
“Antonescu said that, in connection with the successful advance of the German Army, Hitler wrote him a personal letter in which he offered to annex to Romania the Soviet territories extending from the Dniester to the Dnieper which had been captured by the German troops and to establish there their own occupational authorities.”
On Page 80 of the document book at the top of Page 3 of the Russian text of the testimony, Alexianu states that in the summer of 1942 he was present at the Council of Romanian Ministers at which Marshal Antonescu, referring to the successes of the German and the Romanian armies on the Eastern Front, stated:
“It is now evident for us all that I acted rightly when, as early as November 1940 I came to an agreement with Hitler on the joint attack against the Soviet Union.”
However, the generosity of the fascist Fuehrer, who gave Soviet territories away, right and left, to his vassals, diminished noticeably in the course of the war as the Red Army successes grew.
I have here before me one of Hitler’s letters to Ion Antonescu, dated 25 October 1943. I beg the Tribunal to accept it as evidence as Exhibit Number USSR-240 (Document Number USSR-240). Something like 2 years and 3 months had passed since the moment when Hitler complimented his Romanian satrap on the seizure of Bessarabia. Quite recently, Antonescu had still been worrying over the question of organizing a “unified” administration in Transnistria. Circumstances and conditions had altered. Hitler now writes-I quote the second paragraph from the top of Page 1, which you will find on Pages 82-83 of your document book:
“My further request concerns the essential exploitation of Transnistria, that as a rear theater of operations for Army Groups A and South it should not be hampered by any formal
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juridical or economic considerations and difficulties. I must further request you to put at the disposal of the German authorities the entire network of the Transnistrian railways….”
As a poor consolation Hitler adds-Page 82 of the document book: “All military measures . . . have, as their final aim, the preservation of Transnistria for Romania.”
Then even Antonescu, who had so many times subserviently assured Hitler of his submissiveness, reached the end of his endurance. On 15 November 1943 he wrote a lengthy reply to Hitler. In this letter A7itonescu wrote unrestrainedly how he fulfilled the Will of his master at the expense of his people.
I present Antonescu’s letter to Hitler as Exhibit Number USSR-239 (Document Number USSR-239). His letter is dated Bucharest, 15 November 1943. I quote, beginning with Paragraph 2 of this letter, towards the end of Page 5 of the Russian text. It is on Page 88 of the document book:
“As to the regime in Transnistria we agree with your Excellency that it is neither opportune nor timely to examine in the spirit of a banker the problem of this territory as a military zone, a zone of supply, et cetera.
“I should like to begin by explaining the causes of my anxiety. “I do not know whether the truth about the Romanian participation in the war, from 1941 to the present moment, has always been told you: That this war has cost Romania 300,000 million led; that during this period we gave Germany more than 8 million tons of oil, thus threatening our own national stocks, as well as the deposits themselves; that we are bearing heavy expenses incurred in supporting the families of 250,000 men who lost their lives in battle.”
Here I omit four paragraphs which have no bearing in the gist of the matter and continue to read on Page 89 of the document book. “Of course, the arrival of troops on the Transnistrian territory is, as you say, a shield on the gates of Romania. Our only desire is that all be in good order and utilized in the most advantageous manner possible….
“As regards the transfer of the Transnistrian railways into German hands for the purpose of increasing transportation, I beg Your Excellency to reconsider this question. In our opinion this transfer is not necessary.
“Transnistrian railways, from 1941 to the present day, functioned well under Romanian administration. They always satisfied German demands and their management was always highly appreciated.”
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I request you to turn one page of the document book. I now read an extract from Page 90 of the book:
“If the traffic capacity of the Transnistrian railways cannot still be further increased in pursuance to the generally established joint plan, we cannot bear any responsibility for that fact. Here too we kept our obligations.”
And two paragraphs further on, the same page, the following statement is made:
“I am sure that our railway administration could -tarry out the measures necessary in order to increase the traffic capacity and to improve the organization.
“As I personally was in charge of the organization of the administration and economics of this region, it would be a great mortification to me if the administration of the railways were to pass to German hands, since one would justly say that our incapacity in this respect was the reason for such measure.”
There came a moment in the relations between the two aggressors when the former harmony, based on the seizure of foreign lands and wealth, gave place to arguments on the question as to who should bear the great financial responsibility for the losses suffered as a result of the criminal adventure embarked upon by both partners.
This is revealed by the following document, captured from the personal archives of Antonescu and which I intend to present to the honorable Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-245 (Document Number USSR-245). I should like to read a quotation from this document, which is lengthy but which is very important in enabling us to realize the relationship between fascist Germany and her satellites. This document is entitled, “General Hansen’s Meeting with Marshal Antonescu on 7 July 1943.”
As Your Honors will no doubt remember, General Hansen was the head of the German Military Mission of the German General Staff in Romania. I shall read into the record excerpts from this document, underlined in red pencil, on Pages 92 and 93 of the document book…
THE PRESIDENT: Wouldn’t it be possible for you to summarize these documents with reference to Romania? Because you have already drawn our attention to a considerable amount of evidence with reference to egomaniac participation, General Antonescu’s statements and other evidence of that sort. Possibly you would be able to go on then to the question of the Hungarian participation- in Document Number USSR-294. What you are reading us now really shows the extent, no doubt, of the Romanian participation,
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but it is all after the aggression. I thought, from looking at it, that you could possibly go on to USSR-294.
GEN. ZORYA: If the Tribunal wishes, I shall certainly do so.
THE PRESIDENT: I think it would save time and would not detract from the case at an.
GEN. ZORYA: I shall summarize this document in a few sentences, and I shall then pass on to the next document.
THE PRESIDENT: Very well.
GEN. ZORYA: The sense of this conversation is interesting insofar as it reveals the shameless bargaining which went on between Hansen and Antonescu. The objects of this bargaining were money, war supplies, and human lives. Antonescu, who was beginning to feel the disadvantage of the absence of any kind of proper agreement with Germany, insisted that all subsequent dealings, whether of a material or any other nature, be subjected to appropriate official agreements. He demanded from Germany the delivery of various war supplies either of a technical or, in last analysis, of a monetary nature. And when General Hansen said that Germany had no led, Antonescu replied, “If you have no led, give us at least arms and equipment.” That is how the document describes the policy pursued by fascist Germany for extracting the most varied resources from her vassals.
Now, I should like to touch briefly upon certain methods of foreign policy which the Hitlerites used in dealing with their vassals. I should like to dwell on the policy pursued by the Hitlerite conspirators in regard to the question of Transylvania. Holding out the question of Transylvania as bait, the Hitlerite conspirators forced their Hungarian and Romanian vassals to work out their own promotion.
I submit, as Document Number USSR-294, the depositions of Ruszkiczay-Ruediger, a former Generaloberst of the Hungarian Army.
Prior to May 1941, Ruszkiczay-Ruediger held important posts in the Hungarian Foreign Ministry. Subsequently, prior to September 1942 he commanded an army corps, after which he became Deputy War Minister of Hungary.
Now, I should like to read the deposition of Ruszkiczay-Ruediger, concerning the Transylvanian question. The passages which I should like to read into the record are on Page 3 and on the top of Page 4 of the Russian text, which corresponds to Pages 102 and 103 of the document book:
“The second Vienna Arbitration Treaty assumed the form of a decision which was of little profit to Hungary. The district
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of Megyes-Kissarmes, where natural oil could be obtained, was reserved for Romania. In Hungarian political and military circles this was interpreted in such a way that in the Second Vienna Arbitration Treaty Hitler thought himself in alliance with Romania in the war against Soviet Russia. The fact that Hitler considered Romania a more important ally than Hungary was explained on the grounds that in an eventual war with the Soviet Union, Germany would undoubtedly need Romania’s southern wing which extends to the Black Sea.
“In an official conversation which took place towards November 1940 the Chief of the Operational Group of the Hungarian General Staff, Colonel Laszlo, told me the following:
” ‘The second Vienna Arbitration Treaty has aroused bitter envy of Romania in Hungary, and it is up to us to obtain advantages from Hitler.’ ”
I would remind you that Antonescu, in his testimony, presented to the Tribunal earlier in the day, said, when speaking of his negotiations with Hitler:
“In November 1941 Hitler told me that the final word had not been spoken in the Vienna Arbitration Treaty, thereby giving me to understand that Romania could still count upon a revision of the decision previously adopted on the question of Transylvania.”
However, soon after, while visiting Budapest, the Defendant Ribbentrop expressed an entirely opposite point of view.
I shall present to the Tribunal three documents which illustrate the attitude of Hitler, Ribbentrop, and Goering under these circumstances. I submit in evidence Exhibit Number USSR-235 (Document Number USSR-235), containing the minutes of one of the subsequent conversations between Antonescu and Hitler2 which took place on 3 April 1942. This document will be found on Pages 113-116 of the document book. I shall read some excerpts from this document, on Page 3 of the Russian translation, which corresponds to Page 113 in the document book. I quote:
“I”-Antonescu-“reminded him”-Hitler-“that the Hungarian statesmen did not hesitate to declare openly in Parliament and in the press after Ribbentrop’s visit to Budapest that should they intervene”-that is, should they send their troops-“Transylvania is to remain Hungarian; such rumors circulate, and they greatly demoralize the Romanians. Hitler gave me his word of honor that such promises had not been made and could not have been made, and that this does not correspond to actual facts.” .
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In this way Hitler juggled with promises to encourage his satellites.
THE PRESIDENT: Shall we adjourn now for 10 minutes? [A recess was taken.]
GEN. ZORYA: The next document, which I am submitting to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-183 (Document Number USSR-183), concerns the Transylvanian question and the Defendant Ribbentrop. It is the record of a conference between Antonescu and Von Dornberg, Chief of Protocol of the German Ministry for Foreign Affairs, which took place at the frontier on 10 February 1942. I am asking the Tribunal to accept this record as evidence. This document, taken from the personal archives of Marshal Antonescu, was captured by the advancing Red Army. I do not consider it necessary to read the entire document into the record, and I shall merely confine myself to a few excerpts. Will you please open your document book on Page 116, where there is a record of the conference between Antonescu and Von Dornberg of 10 February 1942. I quote:
“He openly introduced the subject of the Order of Charles the First which Herr Von Ribbentrop was claiming for himself through various German official channels in our country, as well as through the Romanian officials accredited to the German Government.”
I pass to the next page, Page 117 of the document book. I quote:
“I told Herr Von Dornberg that I would not be able to grant this award until Herr Von Ribbentrop, at the very first opportunity, made a public declaration also to Romania, a declaration which would bolster up the faith of the Romanian people in their struggle for the cause of justice and for their legitimate claims in the Europe of the future. I would, therefore, grant him this award on condition that it be made public only after he had made this declaration.
“Herr Von Dornberg asked for time to reflect on the matter.
“Next day, before entering the railway coach, he asked me to hand him the decoration, telling me that Von Ribbentrop wanted it and requesting me not to divulge our conversation to Ribbentrop, since he now promised to make the award public only upon the fulfillment of my conditions. On this condition I gave him the decoration, without the appropriate certificate.”
Thus Ribbentrop was prepared to disclaim his Budapest statement on receipt of the Romanian order.
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I have also at my disposal a record of a conference between Antonescu and Goering. Will you kindly turn to Page 118 of the document book. Unfortunately, this document, discovered together with other documents in Antonescu’s personal files, previously mentioned by me, is undated. We submit this document as found. I present it as Exhibit Number USSR-238 (Document USSR-238), and I am reading one excerpt only. I quote:
“During the conversation at Karinhall, Marshal Goering was very reticent on the problem of Transylvania. On the way, in the car, he said to the Marshal”-that is to Antonescu:
” ‘After all, why do you quarrel with Hungary about Transylvania, which is actually more German than Romanian or Hungarian.’ ”
We may, presumably, agree that on this occasion Goering had expressed the viewpoint of the fascist conspirators on the problem of Transylvania with a sufficient degree of truthfulness.
With a view to concluding the clarification of Germany’s mutual relations with her vassal, Romania, I should like to emphasize the subject of crude oil. In this field, Romania was one of Germany’s principal suppliers.
Both before and during the war the Hitlerites extracted oil from Romania by all possible means. Antonescu, by the way, refers to this in one of his letters which has already been read into the record. I shall now submit two documents which sufficiently prove how important this question was to Germany, and how significant it was considered by the Hitlerites themselves. As Exhibit Number USSR-244 (Document Number USSR-244), I present an urgent telegram from the Defendant Keitel, addressed to Marshal Antonescu and received by the latter on 31 October 1942. I shall not explain in detail how this document was taken from the personal archives of Antonescu, in the same way as the previous one. I now read this telegram into the record and would ask you to accept it as evidence-to be found on Page 119 of the document book:
“Telegram to the German Mission for direct transmission to Marshal Antonescu.
“Herr Marshall In the name of the Fuehrer I approach Your Excellency with a request for your personal intervention in the matter of accelerating, as far as possible, the delivery of the maximum possible quantity of fuel to the Italian Fleet, which is absolutely essential to the latter for the continuance of military operations in the Mediterranean.
“The absence and lack of all means of transport for further operations have resulted in a critical situation in North Africa,
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and the transport of supplies depends entirely on the delivery of adequate quantities of fuel.
“I beg Your Excellency to increase to the maximum degree those deliveries of fuel to Italy, which are exclusively reserved for supplying the fleet called upon to maintain important positions in the Mediterranean for the purpose of the joint warfare.
“I have chosen this method of direct appeal to you because I am sure that your personal intervention will result in the assistance required.
“Yours in comradely esteem, signed Keitel, Field Marshal.”
Allow me now to submit the telegram which Antonescu sent in reply to Keitel. Please turn to Page 120 of the document book, Exhibit Number USSR-244(a), (Document Number USSR-244(a)).
THE PRESIDENT: Could you summarize the contents of this document.
GEN. ZORYA: I can summarize the contents of that telegram in two sentences. In reply to the Defendant Keitel’s tearful appeal to increase to the maximum degree the fuel supplies, Antonescu replied, in a wire addressed to Keitel, that he would meet his engagements in full, but that the supplies previously requested by the German officials had already been delivered and that it was impossible to send any more. If something could eventually be saved from the quantities used inside Romania then perhaps, somehow or other, Romania might be able to help her allies. On the whole, Antonescu begged General Keitel to accept his expressions of regard and high esteem, but would not give him any more oil.
Allow me to remind you, Your Honors, that in October and November 1942 Rommel’s fate was being decided in North Africa, and that at the same time the Red Army was barring Germany’s advance on the Grozny and Baku oil fields on the borders of Mozdok. It is obvious that the Germans lacked sufficient quantities of crude oil.
I shall read one extract from the minutes of a conversation which took place on 12 February 1942, between Antonescu and the Defendant Ribbentrop, which has not, as yet, been read into the record. I have previously submitted to the Tribunal the record of this conversation as Exhibit Number USSR-233. I ask you to turn to the end of Page 51 and to Page 52 of the document book, which corresponds to Page 4 of the Russian text. There you will find the following lines. In reply to Ribbentrop’s question on the subject of crude oil, Antonescu stated:
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“As for crude oil, Romania has contributed the maximum which it was in her power to contribute; she can give no more. The only way out of the situation would be to seize territories rich in oil.”
We should note here that Antonescu was not at all original in his idea of seizing other people’s territories, rich in oil.
I am asking Your Honors to refer to Pages 121-129 of the document book. There is one document taken from the private office of the Defendant Rosenberg, which is entitled, “About the Organization of the Caucasus.” I submit this document to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-58 (Document Number USSR-58), and I would ask you to accept it as evidence. In July 1941 the Defendant Rosenberg formulated the German opinion on this question-Page 122 of the document book as follows:
“Germany is interested in creating a stable position in the entire Caucasus in order to secure the safety of continental Europe, that is, to safeguard for herself the link with the Near East. It is only this link with the oil fields that can make Germany and the rest of Europe independent, in the future, of any coalition of maritime powers. The aim of German policy is to control the Caucasus and the adjoining lands to the south, both politically and militarily.”
Will you please turn to Page 124 of the document book as well as to Page 4 of the Russian text of the document from which I am quoting. The same idea is formulated there by the Defendant Rosenberg with extreme clarity. I quote, “Economically, the German Reich must take all oil into its hands.”
Your Honors, I shall not dwell in detail on the relations between the fascist conspirators and their other satellite, Finland, inasmuch as the witness, Buschenhagen, offered sufficiently conclusive evidence on this question; and the Tribunal has probably already got some definite ideas on the subject. I just want to remind the Tribunal that according to Paragraph 3, Section 2, of Plan Barbarossa, Finland was to cover the advance of the German landing of Group North, consisting of units of the 21st Group, which was due to arrive from Norway, and then to operate jointly with that group. According to Plan Barbarossa, the liquidation of the Russian forces at Hango was also assigned to Finland.
I would also like to remind the Tribunal that Section 2 of the temporary Plan Barbarossa, which has been presented to the Tribunal by the American Prosecution as Document Number C-39, mentions Finland’s participation in the war; as I have already reported to the Tribunal, the following sentence is to be found in this section, which corresponds to Page 52 of the document book.
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‘The preliminary negotiations with the Finnish General Staff have been under way since 25 May.”
I should also like to invite your attention to the following paragraph of the same document, Page 58 of the document book:
“Provision has been made for transportation from the Reich to Norway of one security division and 18 artillery battalions, and for transportation to Finland of one reinforced infantry division complete with army corps units. Of the units, one infantry division, two mountain divisions and the SS Group North are designated for Case Silver Fox.
“It has been planned, on the outbreak of military operations, to bring by rail, through Sweden, a further division for the
attack on Hango.”
I consider that I am now justified in stating that the date of 25 May 1941, indicated in the temporary Plan Barbarossa as the date on which the negotiations with the Finnish General Staff were opened, was incorrect. The indication of this date, which did not correspond to reality, was an attempt to disguise the preparations for aggression, presenting them to the outside world as preparations for a so-called preventive war.
In addition to the testimony of the witness, Buschenhagen, already given to the Tribunal, I shall now present, as Exhibit Number USSR-229 (Document Number USSR-229), the depositions of a former colonel of the German Army, Kitchmann, which I beg you to accept as evidence.
Kitchmann held the office of military attaché in the German Embassy at Helsinki since 1 October 1941. You will find this testimony on Page 130 of the document book. I shall read a very short extract therefrom into the record:
“A long time before 22 June 1941, the German Government
and the High Command of the German Armed Forces jointly carried out secret negotiations with the Finnish Government and the General Staff of the Finnish Army and prepared the attack on the Soviet Union. I learned about the preparation for the attack on the Soviet Union by the German and Finnish Armies under the following circumstances: On my arrival at Helsinki in October 1941, as acting German military attaché, I had numerous conversations with Major Von Albedill, the aide of the German military attaché who formerly served in the Military Attaché’s Department in the OKH, General Staff of the Army.
“Albedill acquainted me with the situation in Finland and its military and political background, since Major General Rissing, the military attaché, was seriously ill and receiving
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treatment at the health resort of Merano in the Tyrol. In the course of these conversations Albedill told me that already in September 1940, Major General Bossing, acting on an order of Hitler and of the German General Staff, had organized the visit of Major General Taloela, Plenipotentiary of Marshal Mannerheim, to the Fuehrer’s headquarters in Berlin. During this visit an agreement was reached between ape German and Finnish General Staffs for joint preparations for the attack and for warfare against the Soviet Union.
“In this connection General Taloela told me, during a conference at his staff headquarters in Aunus in November 1941, that he, acting on Marshal Mannerheim’s personal orders, had-as far back as September 1940-been one of the first to contact the German High Command with a view to joint preparation for a German and Finnish attack on the Soviet Union.”
I ask your permission to conclude herewith the presentation of the documents concerning the relations between fascist Germany and her satellite, Finland, since-I repeat-Buschenhagen’s testimony has relieved me of this necessity.
I should like to make one brief resume:
Buschenhagen’s testimony disposes of all attempts to assert that the war waged by Finland was a separate war and was disassociated from the war aims of fascist Germany. Mainlands entry into the war had been envisaged in the war plans of the fascist conspirators and corresponded to the aggressive intentions of the Finnish rulers. The Finns, like the other satellites of Germany, waged war in the hope of gaining whole regions and republics of the Soviet Union.
At the conference of 16 July 1941 Hitler spoke of the Finnish claims to Eastern Karelia, the Leningrad region, and the city of Leningrad. In proof of this fact I refer to Document Number L-221 presented by the United States Prosecution. The extracts quoted from this document will be found on the corresponding page of the document book, Page 141.
Romania and Finland were two German satellites discussed in full detail in Plan Barbarossa. The part these countries played in the plans of German fascism was determined not only by the desire to utilize their war potential-which without doubt was of some importance-but also by their geographical position as operational bases on the flanks of the Soviet Union.
The documents presented to the Tribunal bear witness to the fact that the inclusion of these countries in the preparation for attack against the U.S.S.R. had been carefully plotted by the fascist
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conspirators, in the same way as were all the preparations connected with Plan Barbarossa.
The third satellite of Germany, Hungary, is not mentioned at all in Plan Barbarossa. However, this certainly cannot be taken to mean that the participation of Hungary in the aggression against the Soviet Union had not been planned by the fascist conspirators.
I ask permission to refer to the testimony of Paulus-although he has already testified before the Tribunal-which formulates very clearly . . .
THE PRESIDENT: You aren’t going to give us Paulus’ affidavit over again, are you? We have already had Paulus’ evidence in full.
GEN. ZORYA: Yes, I have already mentioned that this is on Page 182. It is the record of the interrogation of Paulus by General Rudenko. A copy of this record may be produced before the Tribunal now and, furthermore, it is on Page 143 of the document book.
THE PRESIDENT: We have got his actual oral evidence; we don’t want his interrogation.
GEN. ZORYA: But I really need one particular paragraph of his testimony in order to show the connection between the subsequent documents relating to Hungary and the contents of my statement. It is just a few lines.
THE PRESIDENT: It must surely be cumulative, is it not?
GEN. ZORYA: That which was presented to the Tribunal, I could express in my own words, in two sentences.
THE PRESIDENT: Is it in any way different from what Paulus has already said?
GEN. ZORYA: Yes. Do forgive me! I have just been told that Colonel Pokrovsky has already read that extract into the record. I shall therefore merely give a very brief summary of the extract and then pass on to a further subject and shall not repeat myself.
I have in mind, on the one hand, those paragraphs of Paulus’ affidavit which state that the leading factor of Hungary’s policy was the full recognition of Germany’s leading rule and that it was determined by two basic factors, that is, the aspiration to territorial conquests with the help of Germany and the fear of the growing popover of Romania as Germany’s ally; and, on the other hand, I have in mind that passage where Paulus states that Hitler was far more prudent in disclosing his plans to Hungary than to the other satellites, because he considered the Hungarians as garrulous. It is true that Paulus immediately adds, on Page 2 of his affidavit, that:
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“The essential reason was Hitler’s unwillingness to give Hungary a chance of seizing the oil fields in the Russian oil district of Dragovitch.”
Following the opening of the offensive against the Soviet Union, the Supreme Command of the Army, the OKH, issued an order to the 17th Army to seize Dragovitch prior to the arrival of the Hungarians.
Further, Paulus describes the circumstances of his negotiations with the Hungarians regarding armament supplies. This-all this- has already been mentioned by Colonel Pokrovsky. I wish only to refer to the fact that this testimony of Paulus’ has undoubtedly lifted a corner of the veil of mystery shrouding the mutual relations between the German and Hungarian aggressors.
In this connection, I consider it imperative to return to the depositions by Ruszliczay-Ruediger which are already at the disposal of the Tribunal. This document has been presented as Exhibit Number USSR-294.
Touching on the occupation by Hungary of the Transcarpathian Ukraine in 1939, Ruszkiczay-Ruediger testified-see Page 2, Paragraph 3 of the Russian text of the depositions which can be found on Page 101 of the document book. I quote the following-the quotation is underlined:
“This took place not long before the outbreak of the German-Polish war. It then appeared as if economic advantages and a new liberation from the Trianon Treaty were, for Hungary, the primary objectives.
`’But from the time when the region of the Transcarpathian Ukraine acquired a common boundary with Soviet Russia, we began to attach a perfectly different significance to this region by military preparations concerning this area. It was clear to us, the high-ranking officers, that the political leadership both of Germany and Hungary also considered this region strategically important for future military operations against Soviet Russia.”
On Page 9, Paragraph 2 from the bottom, Ruszkiczay-Ruediger tells us of a conference which took place at the end of March 1941, in the course of which the Hungarian Minister of War, Bartha, outlined the objectives of the war with Yugoslavia. Among these objectives Bartha pointed directly to the necessity of eliminating Yugoslavia as a possible ally of the Soviet Union.
However, a more complete picture of Germano-Hungarian relations, which were determined by the preparation of an attack against the Soviet Union, is contained in the statement by the Hungarian Major General, Esteban Ujsaaszy. From 1 May 1939 to
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1 July 1942, Ujszaszy was Chief of the Intelligence and Counterintelligence Services of the Hungarian General Staff. In his official capacity during these years, he had inside information on the secrets which shrouded this preparation. Some of the things which he knew, he communicated to us in the document which I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-155 (Document Number USSR-155). I ask you to accept this document as evidence.
I will read into the record that part of Ujszaszy’s statement which may clarify the question at issue. Beginning from Page 2 of the Russian text-this corresponds to Page 149 of the document book-we find Section 2 entitled, “Preparation of Germany and Hungary for War against Soviet Russia.” Paragraph 1 of this section is devoted to “Harder’s letters.” I quote:
“In November 1940 the German military attaché in Budapest, Colonel Gunther Krappe of the German General Staff, was received in audience by the Chief of the Royal Hungarian General Staff, Henry Werth. Krappe brought a letter from the Chief of the General Staff of the German Army, Generaloberst Halder.
“In that letter Halder informed Werth that in the spring of 1941, ‘Yugoslavia would have to be compelled, if necessary by force of arms, to adopt a definite position in order to exclude, at a later date, the menace of a Russian attack from the rear. In this preventive war, possibly against Yugoslavia and definitely against Soviet Russia, Hungary would have to participate if only in her own interests. “‘
Werth replied that he agreed with Halder’s concept but drew attention to the lack of equipment in the Hungarian Army, which, at that time, was not ready for war against Soviet Russia. His request, on the whole, was for the completion, by Germany, of Hungary’s armaments. He was informed of Halder’s letter and Werth’s reply thereto, by General Werth in person. After that a Hungarian armament commission was invited to Berlin. It consisted of officer-specialists from the Main Ordinance Supply Division of the Royal Hungarian Ministry of Defense, and in December 1940 the commission left for Berlin. The Hungarian requests were as follows . . .
THE PRESIDENT: General, couldn’t you pass on to December 1940, where Field Marshal Keitel invites the Hungarian Minister of Defense to come to Berlin. It is just a few sentences down.
GEN. ZORYA: Yes, I am passing on to this paragraph:
“In December 1940, the Chief of the Supreme Command of the Armed forces (OKW), Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel, invited the Hungarian Minister of Home Defense, General
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Carl Bartha, to come to Berlin in order to: a) discuss personally the problem of armaments; b) elaborate a plan of military and political collaboration between Germany and Hungary for the spring of 1941.
“This invitation was transmitted to Budapest through the Royal Hungarian Military Attaché in Berlin, Colonel in the General Staff Alexander Homlok. At the same time, I received a similar invitation from Admiral Canaris, Chief of the Foreign and Defense Sections of the OKW.”
I omit a long list given by Ujszaszy of persons who accompanied Bartha on his trip, and I read further from Page 151 of the document book:
“The information which we received follows:
“In the spring of 1941 the position of Yugoslavia will be clarified, the menace of a Russian Soviet attack in the rear eliminated …. For this purpose the Hungarian Honved Army, reinforced by the delivery of 10-centimeter field howitzers and with up-to-date tanks for a ‘Mobile Brigade’ will be ready for action. For the war against Russia, Hungary must make available 15 operational units (including 3 mobilized, cavalry, and Panzer units); she must also complete, by 1 June 1941, the erection of fortifications in Transcarpathian Russia, assist the advance of the German troops in the area adjacent to the Hungarian-Yugoslav and the Hungarian-Soviet frontiers and facilitate the deployment and the passage of supplies for the troops through Hungary. The details for the operational preparation will be determined later by representatives of the German General Staff about to be sent to Hungary. As a political compensation for her participation, Hungary will receive territory in Yugoslavia and in Soviet Russia (the ancient Principality of Halicz) and the land at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains, up to the River Dniester.”
In March 1941 Eberhard Kienzl, a colonel of the German General Staff, visited Budapest. The purpose of this visit was to make final arrangements about the question of attack on Yugoslavia
This is what Ujszaszy has to say on the matter-Page 5 of the Russian text, Paragraph 3, from the bottom of Page 152 of the document book:
“The Colonel of the German General Staff, Eberhard Kienzl, detachment Foreign Armies East in the OKH (High Command of the Army), arrived in Budapest in March 1941 bringing with him a letter from Generaloberst Halder to Generaloberst Werth. This letter contained an insistent request on the part of Germany that Hungary should participate in the possible war against Yugoslavia by mobilizing the following army
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corps: I. Budapest, II. Szekesfeherwar, III. Szombathely, IV. Pees, V. Szeged, and in the war against Soviet Russia by mobilizing 15 operational units, including 1 cavalry division, 2 mechanized brigades, and 1 mountain (rifle) brigade.
“The letter announced the imminent arrival in Budapest of a German delegation, headed by Lieutenant General Paulus, for discussing combined operations and the deployment of German troops against Yugoslavia through Hungarian territory.
“In reply to this letter General Werth issued an invitation to the German commission, held out prospects of Hungary’s participation in the war against Yugoslavia and of producing, for this purpose, 3 army corps, that is, the 1st, 4th, and 5th.
“Concerning the war against Soviet Russia, he agreed in principle, promising at least to mobilize the 8th Army Corps (Kressikosice) as well as the mechanized operation units demanded by Halder.
“I was informed personally about this exchange of correspondence by Colonel of the German General Staff, Kienzl.”
THE PRESIDENT: General, speaking for myself, I cannot see that it makes the slightest difference to this Tribunal whether Hungary was going to put one army corps, or two army corps, or three army corps against the Russians. It was absolutely clear from what you have already read, if we are to believe it, that Field Marshal Keitel, in December 1940, was demanding that Hungary should put at Germany’s disposal, for the war against Russia, certain units. What does it matter if subsequent negotiations alter the number of units?
It seems to me that this evidence which is given is entirely cumulative. It doesn’t add anything in the least to what you have already given us, and you could go on to the next document, which is Number USSR-150 (Exhibit Number USSR-150): Everything up to there is simply the negotiations between members of the German and Hungarian General Staffs as to exactly what units of the Hungarian Army were to be used.
GEN. ZORYA: I quite agree with the President that the presentation of the documents on this question should be restricted.
THE PRESIDENT: The next one is 150?
GEN. ZORYA: The Ujszaszy document contains certain information pertaining not only to the number of units pledged by Hungary to Germany in case of war with the Soviet Union; but there is, for example, an indication as to what methods in the preparation for war were being used by the fascist clique in Hungary,
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in agreement with the Hitlerite conspirators. I consider it imperative to dwell on these methods, and that is why I request your permission to quote certain passages in this document.
What I now have in mind, for instance, is the falsification of the information regarding the number of Soviet units concentrated on the Hungarian-Russian border.
THE PRESIDENT: Please, go on.
GEN. ZORYA: Page 155 of the document book reads as follows: “My immediate superior, General Laszlo, as chief of the operational group ordered the second section of the General Staff to prepare a situation report according to which 14 Soviet Russian operational units were concentrated on the Hungarian border, including 8 motorized units. This situation report was prepared by Colonel Cornel Hidai, of Intelligence. “I should like to point out that according to subsequent explanations supplied by the second section of the Royal Hungarian General Staff, there were only four Soviet operational units actually concentrated on the Hungarian border. This circumstance I truthfully reported to Generaloberst Werth and General Laszlo, but the latter altered my truthful, objective report in accordance with his wishes.”
Further, Ujszaszy speaks of plans for provocation drawn up by the militarist clique in Hungary for the purpose of creating incidents abroad to justify an attack on the Soviet Union. Ujszaszy states-Page 10, Line 4 from the top of the document, Page 157 of the document book:
“These plans emanated from Lieutenant General Putterer, from his assistant Lieutenant Colonel Frimond, and from General Laszlo. They proposed that, if necessary, German aircraft, camouflaged as Russian planes, should bomb the eastern border districts of Hungary, with bombs of Soviet Russian origin.”
And finally, Ujszaszy describes the events of the few days preceding the attack on the Soviet Union-this is Page 11 of the document, Page 158 of the document book:
“On 24 June 1941 (if I remember correctly), at 12:30 noon, I was informed that Soviet Russian planes were bombing Raho in Carpathian Russia and firing on trains in the vicinity with machine gun fire. On the same afternoon news reached us that Soviet Russian planes were bombing Kassa (Kosice). The Crown Council, with the Regent in the chair, met on the same evening and, on the strength of Soviet Russia’s provocation, decided to declare war on that country. I am convinced that the bombarding was carried out by German
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planes with Russian markings. My conclusion was based on the following facts:
“a) Lieutenant General Putterer and the German propaganda machine publicized this bombing on a very vast scale.
“b) Lieutenant General Lazslo immediately gave me orders, through the Propaganda Subsection of Section 2 of the Royal Hungarian General Staff, to obtain photographs of such fragments of the ‘Soviet Russian bombs’ as could still be found and to publish these photographs in the press of the fascist countries.
“c) Lieutenant General Fiitterer, General Laszlo, and Lieutenant General Frimond spread, by a whispering campaign, the rumor that Slovakian pilots in Russian service had bombed KassA (Kosice). The excellence of the hits was explained by the fact that these pilots were well acquainted with the terrain.”
This happened, according to Ujszaszy, on 24 June 1941, at 12:30 p.m. We have a document that establishes the fact that long before this date the participation of Hungary in the war against the Soviet Union had been decided. The document presented to the Tribunal and which contains the depositions of Ruszkiczay-Ruediger explains the reasons for the Hungarian assault on the Soviet Union. It may be that Ruszkiczay-Ruediger’s viewpoint is not shared by everybody, but still, as it is the testimony of the Hungarian Deputy Minister of War, this statement can, of course, not be devoid of interest.
On Page 10 of the Russian text of his testimony, Ruszkiczay-Ruediger states that towards the end of May 1941 he received an order to supply, first of all, the troops concentrated in the Transcarpathian Ukraine; 2 days afterwards a secret meeting of the army corps commanders took place at the headquarters of General Werth, Chief of the General Staff, at which the forthcoming attack on the Soviet Union was announced.
I quote from the testimony of Ruszkiczay-Ruediger-Page 108 of the document book and Page 9 of the document itself. I am only quoting the passages underlined, in order to save time. I quote: “. . . General of the Infantry Werth gave us an account of the military and political situation.
“It appears that an attack against the Soviet Union by Germany is forthcoming, in which Romania and Hungary will take an active part on the side of Germany.”
Ruszkiczay-Ruediger further points out that:
“The decision to declare war was taken by the Council of Ministers, after Premier Bardossy and Minister Bartha had made their reports, and was ratified by the Crown Council. The question was not submitted to Parliament.
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“These decisions of the Council of Ministers and the Crown Council caused no surprise at all, and were the result of the voluntary military collaboration with Germany which had actually existed for many years past.
“The Hungarian General Staff and the political leaders of Hungary as from the beginning of the aggression against Czechoslovakia, considered Germany as their mainstay in their plans of revision. Afterwards followed the occupation of Transcarpathian Ukraine and the strategic organization of this region as a military base in preparation for an attack on Soviet Russia.”
Ujszaszy, in his report, mentioned the German military attaché in Budapest, Krappe. The former Lieutenant General of the German Army, Gunther Krappe, was the German military attaché in Budapest from November 1939 to 30 April 1941. After that, Krappe commanded the 10th Corps of SS troops of the Army Group “Vistula,” and was captured by Red Army units.
I request the Tribunal to accept in evidence a statement made by Krappe in January of this year and presented as Exhibit Number USSR-150 (Document Number USSR-150). It should be noted that the main circumstances mentioned in Krappe’s statement coincide with those on Ujszaszy’s report. I shall therefore read only a few excerpts from Page 4 of Krappe’s document, corresponding to Page 165 of the document book:
“In October 1940 I was ordered by the OKH to report on the conditions of fortifications in the region bordering Russia, that is, in the Carpathian Ukraine. The Chief of the Operations Section, Colonel Laszlo, informed me that, so far, there were only simple antitank obstacles in existence, varying in depth from 1 to 2 kilometers and that the construction of barracks for quartering troops had just begun. The necessary surveys for building concrete pillboxes along the border and the highways would be made during the winter and in the spring of 1941 it would be possible to proceed with the actual construction. It appeared to be a question of raising some 6 million pengo
“General Werth gave me permission to make an automobile trip through Munkac to Urzok Pass….
“I communicated the results of the inspection trip and of the information obtained from Colonel Laszlo to Berlin. Some time later Colonel Laszlo informed me that the necessary sums for the building of these fortifications had already been allotted.”
In order to save time, Your Honors, I shall briefly expose the remaining part of Krappe’s testimony. An agreement was reached
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with the War Minister, Von Bartha, to organize war communications and war transports of the German Army in Hungary. In connection with this a special organization therefore arrived which was entrusted with these transports. At the same time, Your Honors, permission was received to establish jointly with the postal services, a special communication system for military needs, and, furthermore, a number of German officers were attached to the Hungarian Army for the interchange of experiences and instruction of the troops. Krappe states that as from December 1940, Hungarian industry was reorganized and worked for the increase of the German military potential. General Leeb, the Chief of the Armament Department, was in charge.
In concluding the presentation of documents concerning the setting up of an aggressive bloc against the Soviet Union by the fascist war criminals, I consider it necessary to make a few comments of a general nature as derived from these documents.
The fascist conspirators began to adopt immediate measures for securing the participation of Romania, Finland, and Hungary in the preparation for the predatory attack on the Soviet Union at least as early as September 1940, when a military mission was sent to Romania.
The negotiations concerning the military preparations for aggression against the Soviet Union, in each of these countries, were mainly concluded during the period September-December 1940. The negotiations were conducted by the general staffs of the German and the satellite armies. The subject of the negotiations in each case was of a purely military character, such as the retraining of the troops, the transportation of military units, the coordination of strategic plans, the deciding on the number of divisions needed to attack the Soviet Union, et cetera.
Such character of negotiations testifies to the fact that there existed between the fascist Government of Germany and the Governments of Romania, Finland, and Hungary, a preliminary agreement with regard to aggression against the Soviet Union even before the negotiations began.
And, finally, the documents submitted reveal that to each of these countries, one way or the other, the fascist conspirators had promised some territory belonging to the Soviet Union.
I should like to point out one more circumstance.
In order fully to grasp the consequences of the predatory fascist attack on the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics, it is not enough to confine ourselves to Plan Barbarossa. This is a strategic plan, a plan for military attack, a plan for the beginning of aggression.
12 Feb. 46 And close on the heels of the attack followed, as it is well known, the so-called “assimilation” and “organization” of the occupied territories. The plans for the “assimilation” and “organization,” which were plans for the extermination of the peaceful civilian population and the plundering of the occupied territories of the Soviet Union, were also prepared in advance, in the same way as Plan Barbarossa.
The Soviet Prosecution declares that the documents at the disposal of the Tribunal, and especially such documents as the directive of 13 March 1941 (Document Number 447-PS), signed by the Defendant Keitel; the order for the application of military jurisdiction, dated 15 May 1941 (Document Number C-50), also signed by Keitel; the propaganda directive for Plan Barbarossa (Document Number C-26); and others, testify to the destruction not only of legal but of all moral standards of behavior by the hordes of the fascist usurpers on the temporarily occupied Soviet territories, this destruction having been premeditated and planned long before the attack on the Soviet Union.
Even before the attack on the Soviet Union, the Hitlerites had decided and outlined in appropriate paragraphs of these instructions, directions, and orders, the terroristic methods for dealing with the civilian population and the measures and means for plundering the land of the Soviet Union and reducing it to a colony of the Third Reich. And when war did break out and the whole secret was laid bare, the fascists did not hesitate to publish all these plans in their press.
I submit to the Tribunal as Exhibit Number USSR-59 (Document Number USSR-59), an article, published on 20 August 1942, in Das Schwarze Corps, an SS paper and organ of the Reich Fuehrer of the SS. This article, entitled, “Should We Germanize?”-Page 180 of the document book-states openly:
“The Reich Fuehrer of the SS chose the following slogan for one of the editions of the newspaper Deutsche Arbeit, devoted to the problems of resettlement in the East:
“Our duty in the East is not Germanization in the former sense of the term, that is, imposing the German language and the German laws upon the population, but to ensure that only people of pure German blood should inhabit the East.”
This negation of Germanization is not new. However, falling from the lips of the Reich Fuehrer of the SS, acting as Reich Commissioner for the strengthening of the Volkstum, it becomes an order. Such is the exact meaning of these words.
The rejection of the idea of germanizing the population of the occupied territories, and the assertion that the East should be
12 Feb. 46
inhabited only by people of pure German blood, signified, in practice, the mass extermination of Soviet citizens, their spoliation and their deportation to slave labor, the annihilation of centuries of Russian culture, and the destruction of our cities and villages. I shall confine myself to what I have just said, as the same theme, or rather themes, have already been elaborated and will be presented to the Tribunal by my colleagues.
On 22 June 1941, after prolonged preparations, the German fascist hordes hurled themselves on the Soviet Union. One hundred and seventy divisions, concentrated on the borders of the Soviet Union from the Arctic Ocean to the Black Sea, started the invasion.
The military problems connected with the attack were formulated in Plan Barbarossa:
“The German Army should be ready, even prior to the end of the war with England, to defeat Soviet Russia by operating with lightning speed.
“To this end the Army will have to utilize all units at its disposal, with the sole reservation that the territories occupied must be adequately protected against all unexpected eventualities.”
Plan Barbarossa foresaw the necessity of annihilating the Red Army, of cutting off the possible retreat towards the interior of all Red Army units still fit for battle and of permitting the German fascist invaders speedily to reach a line of combat which would place the land of Germany beyond the range of the Soviet Air Force.
As an ultimate aim, Plan Barbarossa provided for the strengthening of the Astrakhan-Archangel line, the destruction by bombardment of the Ural industries, the seizure of Leningrad and Kronstadt, and finally, the capture of Moscow.
THE PRESIDENT: Would that be a good time to break off?
[The Tribunal adjourned until 13 February 1946 at 1000 hours.]
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