4 Jan. 46

Aggressive war cannot be prepared or waged without intense activity on the part of all branches of the armed forces, and particularly by the high-ranking officers who control these forces. To the extent, therefore, that German preparation for and the waging of aggressive war are historical facts of common knowledge, or are already proved, it necessarily follows that the General Staff and High Command group, and the German Armed Forces, participated therein.

This is so notwithstanding the effort on the part of certain German military leaders to insist that until the troops marched they lived in an ivory tower unwilling to see the direction to which their work led.

The documents to which I will refer fully refute this, and moreover some of these men now fully admit they participated gladly with the Nazis, because the Nazi aims coincided closely with their own.

I think that the documents which Mr. Alderman read into the transcript already adequately reflect the purposes and objectives of the German General Staff and High Command group during the period prior to the absorption of Austria. During this period occurred, as is charged in the Indictment, firstly, secret rearmament, including the training of military personnel, the production of war munitions, and building of an air force; secondly, the Göring announcement on 10 March 1935 that Germany was building a military air force; thirdly, the law for compulsory military service of 16 March 1935, fixing the peacetime strength of the German Army at 500,000; and finally, and fourthly, the reoccupation of the Rhineland on 7 March 1936 and the refortification of that area.

Those particular facts do not require judicial proof. They are historical facts, and likewise the fact that it would have been impossible for the Nazis to achieve these things without co-operation by the Armed Forces is indisputable from the very nature of things.

Mr. Alderman described to the Tribunal and read from numerous documents which illustrate these events. He included numerous documents concerning the secret expansion of the German Navy in violation of treaty limitations, under the guidance of the Defendant Raeder.

He also read the secret Reich Defense Law, Document 2261-PS, already in the record as Exhibit Number USA-24, which was adopted on the same day that Germany unilaterally renounced the armament provisions of the Versailles Treaty. He read Von Blomberg's plan, dated 2 May 1935, for the reoccupation. of the Rhineland - that is Document C-159, Exhibit Number USA-54 — and Blomberg's orders under which the reoccupation was actually carried out.