3 Dec. 45

"a. For the 'armed war' it is essential that the surprise element, as the most important factor contributing to success, be made full use of by appropriate preparatory measures, already in peacetime and by an unexpectedly rapid course of the action. Thus it is essential to create a situation within the first 2 or 3 days which plainly demonstrates to hostile nations, eager to intervene, the hopelessness of the Czechoslovakian military situation and which, at the same time, will give nations with territorial claims on Czechoslovakia an incentive to intervene immediately against Czechoslovakia. In such a case, intervention by Poland and Hungary against Czechoslovakia may be expected, especially if France — due to the obvious pro-German attitude of Italy — fears, or at least hesitates, to unleash a European war by intervening against Germany. Attempts by Russia to give military support to Czechoslovakia mainly by the Air Force are to be expected. If concrete successes are not achieved by the land operations within the first few days, a European crisis will certainly result. This knowledge must give commanders of all ranks the impetus to decided and bold action.

"b. The Propaganda War must on the one hand intimidate Czechoslovakia by threats and wear down her power of resistance; on the other hand issue directions to national groups for support in the 'armed war' and influence the neutrals into our way of thinking. I reserve further directions and determination of the date.

"4. Tasks of the Armed Forces. Armed Forces preparations are to be made on the following basis:

"a. The mass of all forces must be employed against Czechoslovakia.

"b. For the West, a minimum of forces are to be provided as rear cover which may be required, the other frontiers in the East against Poland and Lithuania are merely to be protected, the southern frontiers to be watched.

"c. The sections of the Army which can be rapidly employed must force the frontier fortifications with speed and decision and must break into Czechoslovakia with the greatest daring in the certainty that the bulk of the mobile army will follow them with the utmost speed. Preparations for this are to be made and timed in such a way that the sections of the army which can be rapidly employed cross the frontier at the appointed time, at the same time as the penetration by the Air Force, before the enemy can become aware of our mobilization. For this, a timetable between Army and Air Force is