4 Dec. 45

the German and Polish Governments had signed a 10 year pact of non-aggression. It was, as the signatories themselves stated, to introduce a new era into the political relations between Poland and Germany. It was said in the text of the pact itself that "the maintenance and guarantee of lasting peace between the two countries is an essential prerequisite for the general peace of Europe." The two governments therefore agreed to base their mutual relations on the principles laid down in the Pact of Paris, and they solemnly declared that:

"In no circumstances . . . . will they proceed to the application of force for the purpose of reaching a decision in such disputes." That declaration and agreement was to remain in force for at least 10 years and thereafter it was to remain valid unless it was denounced by either Government 6 months before the expiration of the 10 years, or subsequently by 6 months' notice. Both at the time of its signature and during the following 4 years Hitler spoke of the German-Polish agreement publicly as though it were a cornerstone of his foreign policy. By entering into it, he persuaded many people that his intentions were genuinely pacific, for the re-emergence of a new Poland and an independent Poland after the war had cost Germany much territory and had separated East Prussia from the Reich. And that Hitler should, of his own accord, enter into friendly relations with Poland — that in his speeches on foreign policy he should proclaim his recognition of Poland and of her right to an exit to the sea, and the necessity for Germans and Poles to live side by side in amity — these facts seemed to the world to be convincing proof that Hitler had no "revisionist" aims which would threaten the peace of Europe; that he was even genuinely anxious to put an end to the age-old hostility between the Teuton and the Slav. If his professions were, as embodied in the treaty and as contained in these declarations, genuine, his policy excluded a renewal of the "Drang nach Osten", as it had been called, and was thereby going to contribute to the peace and stability of Europe. That was what the people were led to think. We shall have occasion enough to see how little truth these pacific professions in fact contained.

The history of the fateful years from 1934 to 1939 shows quite clearly that the Germans used this treaty, as they used other treaties, merely as an instrument of policy for furthering their aggressive aims. It is clear from the documents which will be presented to the Tribunal that these 5 years fall into two distinct phases in the realization of the aggressive aims which always underlay the Nazi policy. There was first the period from the Nazi assumption of power in 1933 until the autumn of 1937. That was the preparatory period. During that time there occurred the breaches