10 Dec. 45

entrusted with "special tasks." This assignment is discussed in Paragraph 2b, which appears on Page I of the English translation and reads as follows:

"b) In the area of operations of the Army the Reichsführer SS is, on behalf of the Führer entrusted with special tasks for the preparation of the political administration — tasks which result from the struggle which has to be carried out between two opposing political systems. Within the realm of these tasks the Reichsführer SS shall act independently and under his own responsibility. The executive power invested in the Supreme Commander of the Army (OKH) and in agencies determined by him shall not be affected by this. It is the responsibility of the Reichsführer SS that through the execution of his tasks military operations shall not be disturbed. Details shall be arranged directly through the OKH with the Reichsführer SS."
The order then states that in time political administration will be set up under Commissioners of the Reich, and discusses the relationship of these officials to the Army. This is contained in Paragraph 2c and Paragraph 3, parts of which I should like to read:

"c) As soon as the area of operations has reached sufficient depth, it is to be limited in the rear. The newly occupied territory in the rear of the area of operations is to be given its own political administration. For the present it is to be divided on the basis of nationality and according to the positions of the Army groups into North (Baltic countries), Center (White Russia), and South (Ukraine). In these territories the political administration is taken care of by Commissioners of the Reich who receive their orders from the Führer

"3) For the execution of all military tasks within the areas under the political administration in the rear of the area of operations, commanding officers who are responsible to the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces (OKW) shall be in command.

"The commanding officer is the supreme representative of the Armed Forces in the respective areas and the bearer of the military sovereign rights. He has the tasks of a territorial commander and the rights of a supreme Army commander or a commanding general. In this capacity he is responsible primarily for the following tasks:

"a) Close co-operation with the Commissioner of the Reich in order to support him in his political tasks; b) exploitation of the country and securing its economic values for use by German industry."