members of the SD, including all local representatives and agents honorary or otherwise, whether they were technically members of the SS or not, but not including honorary informers who were not members of the SS, and members of the Abwehr who were transferred to the SD.

The Tribunal declares to be criminal within the meaning of the Charter the group composed of those members of the Gestapo and SD holding the positions enumerated in the preceding paragraph who became or remained members of the organization with knowledge that it was being used for the commission of acts declared criminal by Article 6 of the Charter, or who were personally implicated as members of the organization in the commission of such crimes. The basis for this finding is the participation of the organization in War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity connected with the war; this group declared criminal cannot include, therefore, persons who had ceased to hold the positions enumerated in the preceding paragraph prior to 1 September 1939.


Structure and Component Parts: The Prosecution has named Die Schutzstaffeln der Nationalsozialistischen Deutschen Arbeiterpartei (commonly known as the SS) as an organization which should be declared criminal. The portion of the Indictment dealing with the SS also includes Der Sicherheitsdienst des Reichsführer-SS (commonly known as the SD). This latter organization, which was originally an intelligence branch of the SS, later became an important part of the organization of Security Police and SD and is dealt with in the Tribunal's Judgment on the Gestapo.

The SS was originally established by Hitler in 1925 as an elite section of the SA for political purposes under the pretext of protecting speakers at public meetings of the Nazi Party. After the Nazis had obtained power the SS was used to maintain order and control audiences at mass demonstrations and was given the additional duty of "internal security" by a decree of the Führer. The SS played an important role at the time of the Röhm purge of 30 June 1934, and, as a reward for its services, was made an independent unit of the Nazi Party shortly thereafter.

In 1929 when Himmler was first appointed as Reichs Führer the SS consisted of 280 men who were regarded as especially trustworthy. In 1933 it was composed of 52,000 men drawn from all walks of life. The original formation of the SS was the Allgemeine SS, which by 1939 had grown to a corps of 240,000 men, organized on military lines into divisions and regiments. During the war its strength declined to well under 40,000.