7 Jan. 46

a teletype received from the Supreme Command in the West, inquiring what should be done about applying the Hitler Order to airborne troops and commandos.

I would like to read a small part of the teletype, beginning at the beginning:
"Supreme Command West; teletype message Number 1750/44; top secret; 23 June 1944.

"The treatment of enemy commando groups has so far been carried out according to the order referred to."
If I may interpolate here, the order referred to is shown in the cross-reference to the Führer Order of 18 October 1942.
"With the large-scale landing achieved, a new situation has arisen. The order referred to directs, in Paragraph 5, that enemy soldiers who are taken prisoner in open combat or surrender within the limits of normal combat operations (such as large-scale landing operations and undertakings) are not to be treated according to Paragraphs 3 and 4. It must be established in a form easily understood by the troops how far the concept 'within the limits of normal combat operations, et cetera' is to be extended."
Then I pass down to Subparagraph D and read the first sentence of that subparagraph.

THE PRESIDENT: I think you ought to read the latter part of "C"
COL. TAYLOR: Your Honor, I think it is all summarized in the one sentence.

THE PRESIDENT: The last sentence is the one that I mean.

"Considerable reprisals against our own prisoners must be expected if its contents become known."
Then, continuing with "D":
"The application of Number 5 for all enemy soldiers in uniform penetrating from the outside into the occupied western territories is held by the Supreme Command West to be the most correct and clearest solution."
Accordingly, as it is there shown, the Supreme Command in the West directed that Paragraph 5, which is the paragraph under which the orders for execution are not to be applied, should be utilized in the West.

At the foot of the page is the position taken by the Armed Forces Operational Staff, the recommendation they were making:
"l. The Commando Order remains basically in effect, even after the enemy landing in the West.