Cornell University Law Library

Donovan Nuremberg Trials Collection

Nuremberg trial transcripts and documents from the Collection of General William J. Donovan

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Volume 005
Subdivision Subdivision 10 / High Command and General Staff
Part 1
Section 10.02 contd (Trial Brief, Part H B, Affidavits 1-4 in German)
Title Trial Brief re General Staff and High Command of the German Armed Forces / Part B/ Affidavits Nos. 1-4, inclusive / German Version
Pages 12
Pages Supplemental With the following breakdown: Title page (lp. unnumbered); Affidavit No.l (3 pp.); Affidavit No.2 (3 pp.); Affidavit No.3 (2 pp.); Affidavit No.4 (3 PP.)
Date 1945-11-07
Language German and English
Author Franz Haider (Affidavit No. 1); Walter von Brauchitsch (Affidavit No.2); Werner von Blomberg (Affidavit No.3); Walter von Brauchitsch (Affidavit No.4)
Witness Franz Haider (Affidavit No. 1); Walther von Brauchitsch; Werner von Blomberg; Walther von Brauchitsch
Other Names Hitler; Keitel; Jodl; Warlimont; von Brauchitsch; Doenitz; von Greim; Beck; Zeitzler; Guderian; Krebs; Schniewindt; Fricke; Meisel; Jeschonnek; Körten; Kreipe; Keller; Goering
Other Dates 1919; 1924; 1938-1939; January 1938; April 1939; 2 August 1934; 22 August 1939; 14 June 1941; 1945
Abstract This document comprises the German texts of four affidavits that appear in English translation elsewhere in Volume V, section 10.02 of The Donovan Papers. Affidavits Nos. 1 and 2, signed by Franz Haider and Walter von Brauchitsch, respectively, are identical prepared statements that attest to the discrete responsibilities of each level and branch of the High Command of the German Armed Forces. These statements refer to an accompanying chart that illustrates the hierarchal structure of the High Command, complete with the names of the men who, like Haider and von Brauchitsch, held the positions of highest authority (and greatest responsibility). Affidavit No.3 is signed by Werner von Blomberg and attests to the support Hitler received from the German Generals prior to 1938-1939 and to the overwhelming support he enjoyed from the German people. Blomberg also cites the German people, as well as himself and his military colleagues, as being chiefly concerned about redeeming the "desecration" caused by the Polish Corridor, which separated East Prussia from Germany proper; this question, Blomberg states, "would have to be settled some day, if necessary by force of arms," and was "one of the chief reasons behind the partially secret rearmament" that began in the 1920's and was accelerated under Hitler. Blomberg also comments on the official standing and performance of Keitel. Affidavit No.4 and its supplement are signed by Walter von Brauchitsch and constitute a description of the procedure by which the Commanders-in-Chief of the army groups (OKH) formulated military plans based on Hitler's overall objectives, then submitted those plans to Hitler for approval. The process involved considerable discussion and a "constant exchange of ideas' (p. 1,2). Once the plans were finalized, the OKW issued written orders to the three branches of the German military. The pages of this document vary in condition. All are typewritten copies of good quality and most of the pages appear stable. Pages 2 and 3 of the Haider affidavit are browning and fragile.
Keywords German equivalents for the following: High Command; German Armed Forces; Responsibility; Territorial questions; Polish Corridor; Rearmament; OKW; OKH; Operational and deployment plans; Territorial jurisdiction