The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 2000/01/05

Q. The reason?

A. Frequently the Fuehrer made objections, giving various
reasons in the case of Funk. He was sceptical about him and
didn't want him there.

Q. Witness, in April, 1941, you are supposed to have
informed defendant Funk that Rosenberg had received an order
from Hitler for a unified treatment of the problems in the
Eastern Territories. Besides giving that message to Funk you
are supposed to have passed it on to Goering and Keitel.
From that fact the conclusion has been drawn by the
prosecution that Funk was one of the influential persons
concerned with the preparation for aggressive war against

Can you tell us whether and, if so, why, you also passed
that message on to the defendant Funk at that time?

A. Either the Fuehrer told me to - which I don't think was
the case - or I believed that from the economic point of
view Funk would be interested in that information. I passed
it on to him as a special personal gesture. I don't remember
any particular reason now; I certainly must have passed the
same message on to the others, but not in writing; the
others probably received it orally.

There was no question at all of an aggressive war when
Rosenberg was given that task by Hitler. He was supposed to
be merely a sort of political commissioner for the Eastern
Territories. He was to study the conditions of the peoples

Q. Dr. Lammers, approximately at the same time - that is to
say, the spring of 1941, and shortly before the beginning of
the Russian campaign - you are supposed to have had some
further discussions with the defendant Funk on the subject
of what turn the foreign political situation in respect to
Russia might possibly take in the near future. On that
occasion you are supposed to have told defendant Funk
something regarding the reasons why Hitler believed in the
possibility of a war against Russia. What did you tell
defendant Funk at that time regarding these preparations for
the war at one time or another?

A. It must have been what I knew myself at the time, namely
information, which the Fuehrer had given me, that troop
concentrations in Russia had been observed, which allowed
the conclusion to be drawn that an armed conflict with
Russia might occur. These were the words the Fuehrer used.
He believed that things would come to a head with Russia and
therefore wished that one man - and that was Rosenberg -
should concern himself with Eastern questions, since the
possibility of an armed conflict with Russia did exist. That
is probably what I told Funk. I can't imagine what else I
could have told him.

Q. At that time, Dr. Lammers, you are supposed to have
mentioned not only troop concentrations on the Russian side
along the eastern frontier of Germany, but also the Russian
march into Bessarabia.

A. Yes, it is possible that that was the case. The south-
east frontier, at any rate. And perhaps I mentioned that the
discussions which had taken place with Russia, with Molotov,
were unsatisfactory.

Q. In that connection - since you now refer to the
discussion with Molotov - you are supposed to have told
defendant Funk in particular that Russia was making
considerable claims on the Balkans and in respect to the
Baltic Sea, and that because

                                                  [Page 135]

of these claims Hitler was reckoning with the possibility of
war. Could that be correct?

A. It is possible that we talked about it, but I can't
remember for certain.

Q. And you know, Dr. Lammers, that in this connection an
Organisation was established under the heading "Central
Planning"? Do you know that?

A. Yes.

Q. Defendant Funk was made a member of the "Central
Planning," and I think that was at the end of 1943. Is it
correct that Funk, when he joined the "Central Planning,"
was no longer at all interested in the use of labourers for
German production? Why was that?

A. I believe that Funk's only interest in the "Central
Planning" was in order to receive raw materials for civilian

Q. For civilian production at home?

A. Yes, at home. That was his interest in the "Central
Planning," since he was responsible only for the
distribution of these economic goods, and civilian
production had been transferred to Minister Speer.

Q. When?

A. I think that was at the very moment when the Ministry for
Armament and Munitions was converted into a Ministry for
Armaments and War Production. I think that was in 1942. Thus
Funk was, of course, very interested in raw materials, but
the employment of labour, in my opinion, interested him very
little, since he didn't have enough raw material to allow
civilian production to go on.

Q. And then, Dr. Lammers, I have one last question: Can you
remember that defendant Funk in the year 1944 - it is
supposed to have been in February and also a few times
during subsequent months - visited you and told you of his
trouble because of the unsatisfactory position which he was
occupying as Minister of Economy and Plenipotentiary for
Economy, and that on this occasion he talked to you about
the question of whether his conscience would allow him to
retain his position as President of the Reichsbank and Reich
Minister of Economy; why he did so and why he didn't place
this office at the disposal of somebody else? Perhaps you
can say something about this.

A. I have frequently discussed these questions with Funk.

Q. When?

A. In 1943, but particularly afterwards in 1944. I know that
he was considerably worried about this and that he wanted
very much to have an opportunity to take his worries
personally to the Fuehrer. If he did remain in office then
it was only because he told himself that during war time he
couldn't resign from his post - that wouldn't be the right
thing for a good German to do, to resign during war time.
But he had the most fervent wish to be able to report to the
Fuehrer about the economic situation, and mainly about the
particular impressions gained by the Gauleiter in the
individual districts. He had the most fervent wish once for
all to report to the Fuehrer and learn at least something
about the war situation, and talk about the question of
ending the war. That was since the beginning of 1944. I made
several attempts to submit the matter to the Fuehrer, and I
nearly succeeded later by camouflaging the real reason and
pretending there was another important reason - some
questions of finance.

I submitted the matter to the Fuehrer, but the Fuehrer sized
up the situation and, although Herr Funk had been waiting at
my office for days, he refused the request, probably because
of Bormann's efforts towards this end. With the best
intentions Funk didn't succeed in seeing the Fuehrer and I
didn't succeed in taking him to the Fuehrer.

DR. SAUTER: Mr. President, I have no further question.

DR. DIX (counsel for Schacht): Mr. President, if you wish to
close the session at five, I must say that I shall have not
finished by five, and I am reluctant to break off my
examination. I leave it to the Tribunal whether we should
extend the session or whether we should break off now.

                                                  [Page 136]

THE PRESIDENT: I think you had better go on, Dr. Dix; we
have nearly ten minutes.


Q. Witness, other witnesses and also you - you on the
strength of vast experience and your position as chief of
the Reich Chancellery from the seizure of power until the
collapse - have stated that applications for resignation
were prohibited by Hitler. I, therefore, don't want to put
any more questions on that subject; I merely want to discuss
the attempts to resign which Schacht actually made. I ask
you first of all to answer the general questions with "yes"
or "no."

Did Schacht send in applications for resignation or not?

A. Yes.

Q. I should now like to discuss with you the individual
applications for resignation. I can't expect you, without
any help, to recall individual occasions. I permit myself
therefore to help your memory along a little in connection
with the first question.

Please recall March, 1937, when Schacht stopped Reichsbank
credits, that is, gave notice with reference to them and you
visited him in connection with this. Was that the first
resignation attempt?

A. I remember that very exactly, since Herr Schacht's
application for resignation was very unpleasant for Hitler,
and he gave me the task of straightening the matter out with
Schacht. Thus I made several personal visits to Schacht, but
he refused to withdraw his application for resignation, and
he gave as his reason the fact that he couldn't approve any
longer the Fuehrer's credit policy and that he was afraid of
inflation and would have to protect the German nation from
that. As for the trade law, he had to ...

THE PRESIDENT: Dr. Dix, is it necessary to go into details?
We gather that there were several offers to resign. Is it
necessary to go into the details of each one?


Q. In that case we leave it. It is enough for me, Dr.
Lammers, if you confirm that in March, 1937, Schacht made
his first application for resignation.

A. And then there was a compromise, Schacht agreeing to
remain in office one more year, although the law called for
a term of four years.

Q. Please, try and remember what happened further in August,
1937. Goering had issued a decree concerning mines.  It was
Schacht's view that this was an unpermissible interference
with matters under his jurisdiction. Did a second
application for resignation follow?

A. Yes.

Q. And didn't Schacht write a letter on that occasion
addressed to Goering, the 5th August, a copy of which he
sent to Hitler? Can you remember that?

A. Yes. It was because of that letter that Hitler dismissed
Schacht afterwards.

Q. Now we come to the war. Did Schacht also repeat his
applications for resignation during the war? Please recall
the summer of 1941 and a memorandum which Schacht sent to
Hitler regarding the necessity of a speedy conclusion of

A. The first application for resignation was handed in
because it had been prohibited to listen to foreign
broadcasting stations. Schacht was thereby forbidden to
listen to many foreign stations and he complained about it
and handed in an application for resignation, whether in
writing or verbally, I don't know. The request was refused,
and later he submitted a memorandum in which he discussed
the end of the war and the political and economic situation.
I had to tell Schacht in answer to this memorandum that the
Fuehrer had read it and had nothing to say in reply.
Thereupon, in 1942, Schacht again asked me to ask the
Fuehrer if he was disposed to receive another memorandum. At
this the Fuehrer gave me the order to write to Schacht and
tell him to refrain from submitting any further memoranda.

DR. DIX: I could, Mr. President, recall the important points
of this memorandum of the summer of 1941 for the witness. If
the Tribunal is familiar with the details

                                                  [Page 137]

of this memorandum, which we haven't got and which we could
ascertain only on the basis of the witness's memory by
asking him questions, then I should like to present to him
the exact contents of this memorandum. If on the other hand
the Tribunal is of the opinion ...

THE PRESIDENT: Have you got the memorandum?

DR. DIX: No, we have not got the memorandum ... only in
memory - that is to say, Schacht remembers it.

THE PRESIDENT: If the memorandum is lost and you can prove
the loss you can put the contents of it to the witness. If
the contents are not relevant, it is no good even for the
witness. Are the contents of the document relevant?

DR. DIX: These points which I want to submit I do consider
relevant. It is not very long either, it is not long.

THE PRESIDENT: So far as the question of proof is concerned
the rule is, I think, if the document has been lost, you can
prove the contents of it and you can put it to the witness.
Yes, you can put the main points to him, Dr. Dix.

DR. DIX: The question which you put to me involves
considerable responsibility. At the moment I can merely
assure you that I am convinced that the memorandum has been
lost; but whether I can prove it, the negative fact is that
it is lost, that is something I cannot say at the moment. I
am convinced it is lost.

THE PRESIDENT: Herr Schacht presumably is going to say it
was lost. You, of course, cannot prove it yourself but I
mean you can prove it by Schacht.

DR. DIX: Yes, Schacht will confirm it when he becomes a
witness on the stand.


Q. This was in September, 1941, that is to say, after the
great successes in Russia by the German Army. Then Schacht
wrote, in this memorandum to Hitler, that Hitler had now
reached the peak of his success and that this was the most
favourable moment for him to aim at peace. In the case of
any further duration of the war ...

MR. DODD: I suggest, would it not be more proper for counsel
to ask this witness first of all whether or not he recalls
the contents of the memorandum before reading what purports
to be the contents.

THE PRESIDENT: I think he should, yes.

DR. DIX: I did not remind him of the contents; I just wanted
to recall to him the individual points. Dr. Lammers has
already said that ...

THE PRESIDENT: I think you had better put it to him sentence
by sentence and not all at once.

DR. DIX: But I am not proposing to read it, your Honours, I
am merely trying to repeat the contents as Schacht remembers
them. I cannot read it, of course, since I do not know it.

THE PRESIDENT: Would you ask the witness if he remembers
what the contents were, not putting it in a leading form?

DR. DIX: Yes, I shall, certainly ask him. But I think he has
already answered that he no longer remembers all the
details; therefore I wanted to aid his memory by recalling
the main points.

THE PRESIDENT: Ask him what he does remember of it.


Q. Well then, Dr. Lammers, without my presenting the main
points to you, what do you remember?

A. I think that in this memorandum Schacht set forth the
economic capacities of Germany and of foreign countries,
that he pointed out that this period in 1941 - I believe it
was in the autumn - was the most favourable moment for peace
negotiations, for bringing the war to an end. He also
explained the world situation, but I cannot remember how. He
sketched the political situation in other countries. He
talked about America, Italy, Japan and he compared the
factors. After the Fuehrer had looked at the memorandum he
put it aside and he said: "I have already disapproved of
that, I do not want that."

                                                  [Page 138]

Further details I do not know.

Q. When you mention other powers, do you remember that he
stated that Italy's withdrawal was merely a question of
time, since the opposition group around the king would not
rest until Mussolini was brought down?

A. Yes, it is possible that it did say that, but I cannot
remember definitely.

THE PRESIDENT: One moment. The Tribunal will adjourn now.

(The Tribunal adjourned until 9th April, 1946, at 10.00 hours.)

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