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 007
Subdivision "Subdivision 13/ Preparation for Aggressive Warfare"
Part 2
Section 13.17 (Wechsler testimony)
Title Testimony Presented to the Subcommittee on War Mobilization of the Senate Military Affairs Committee at 10:30 AM on June 28, 1945 by Herbert Wechsler, Assistant Attorney General of the United States in Charge of the War Division Department of Justice
Pages 6
Pages Supplemental None
Date 1945-06-28
Language English
Author Heibert Wechsler
Witness Heibert Wechsler
Other Names Geheimrat Schmitz
Other Dates 17 March 1939
Abstract This document cites a sample case to illustrate how German corporations worked to protect their foreign assets during the war. Wechsler quotes from a document, prepared by lawyers of I.G. Farben in 1939, that presents a plan "to avoid those transactions which led to seizure in England and the United States during the last war and instead to transfer title to the foreign Farben holdings to 'American friends' or to neutrals which would not be suspect"' (p. 1). These transfers, Wechsler argues, indicate that "the German war plans embraced a studied effort to avert property seizure during the war, to safeguard the economic position abroad which German industries had carefully built up and to resume that position at the close of hostilities in collaboration with their 'American friends'" (p.6). The purpose of this inquiry, as Wechsler notes in his introductory remarks, is to "avoid the mistake of the last war when, following the cessation of hostilities, so many of the spearheads of German economic aggression in this country ultimately reverted to German hands" (p. 1). This document is a typewritten, single-spaced copy on legal-size paper that is generally in good condition.
Keywords Economic warfare; Economic penetration; I. G. Farben; Foreign assets; Sales organizations; Inventories; Claims; Patents; General Aniline and Film Corporation; I. G. Chemie