This page last amended: 11/09/02 22:22:06


Additions to WGDC

Bach-Zelewski, Erich, von dem

General of Police and of Waffen-SS.  Chief of Anti-Partisan Units on the entire Eastern Front, 1943-44; in charge of the defense of Warsaw until liberated by the Red Army; Commanded a Waffen-SS Corps on the Western front. He hailed from a Junker military family in East Prussia, joined the Freikorps after having served during the First World War, was an officer in the Reichswehr during the twenties, and joined the NSDAP in 1930.  In 1941 was appointed as General in the Waffen SS and was assigned to the Central Army Group on the Russian front, where he served until the end of 1942. 

Bach-Zelewski was largely responsible for masterminding and carrying into operation the massacre of "race and political" enemies during the early months of the military onslaught on the USSR.  As Richard Overy has recently noted:

In the last two weeks of July 1941 he was given control of some 11,000 SS troops-almost four times the number originally assigned to the Einsatzgruppen-so that the pace of the killing could be stepped up.  Around 6,000 ordinary police were put under [his] authority.  By the end of1941 33,000 local auxiliaries had joined them, a total of over 50,000 men whose job was to kill not only Jews, but other race enemies such as gypsies and the mentally and physically disabled.  The overwhelming number of victims were Jews." (R Overy, Russia's War. Allen Lane, 1998, p.140)

In July 1943 he was given charge of all anti-partisan activities on the eastern front.  In 1944 he commanded the German troops that were responsible for crushing the uprising in Warsaw.  In return for turning witness for the prosecution at the Nuremberg trials he was spared being handed over to the USSR authorities for trial.   He was convicted in 1961 for his participation in the Röhm purge of 1934 when the senior leaders of the SA were executed, and sentenced to four and a half years imprisonment.  A year later he was convicted of the murder of six communists in 1933, during which he commanded SS and Gestapo units in East Prussia and Pomerania.  For this he was sentenced to life imprisonment.  As Wistrich notes, in neither case was he charged with the massacre of Jews, "thereby suggesting that only the murder of ethnic Germans was perceived as an unpardonable crime."  (R Wistrich, Who's Who in Nazi Germany, Routledge, 1995) Died in prison in 1972

Berger, Gottlieb

Chief of the Central Office of the SS; SS-Obergrupenfuehrer; General in the Waffen-SS; Inspector-General of Prisoners of War; head of Policy Division of Reich Ministry for Eastern Territories.

Best, Dr Werner Karl

German Plenipotentiary in Denmark.

Bormann, Martin

Secretary of the Führer and Head of the Party Chancery.  Member of Hitler's Cabinet with powers of Reich Minister.  Reichsleiter.  SS Gruppenführer.   Executive head of the Volkssturm. SS-Grupenfuehrer.

Bouhler, Philipp

Chief of the Chancery of the Führer. Reichsleiter.

Brandt, Dr. Karl

Personal physician to AdoIf Hitler; Gruppenfuehrer in the SS and Generalleutnant (Major General) in the Waffen SS; Reich Commissioner for Health and Medical Services (Reichskommissar fuer Sanitaets- und Gesundheitswesen); and member of the Reich Research Council (Reichsforschungsrat). Appointed Plenipotentiary for Health and Medical Services in July 1942, his task was to coordinate certain aspects of the requirements of the civilian branch of the medical service, which Dr Leonardo Conti was responsible for, and the military medical services, which were under the control of Dr Siegfried Handloser. In September Hitler appointed him General Commissioner for Sanitation and Health and empowered him to coordinate and direct the problems and activities of the entire administration for sanitation and health. "Finally, in August 1944, Hitler appointed Dr. Brandt Reich Commissioner for Sanitation and Health, and stated that in this capacity Brandt's office ranked as the "highest Reich authority." (N0-082) Brandt was authorized to issue instructions to the medical offices and organizations of the government, to the party, and the armed forces, in the field of sanitation and health." (United States v. Karl Brandt et al.)

Brauchitsch, Walter von

Field-Marshal and Commander-in-Chief of the German Army between 1938 and December 1941, at which time Hitler assumed that position.

Buch, Walter

Reichsleiter; Supreme Party Judge; Adviser on Population and Racial Policy; SS Obergruppenfuehrer.

Canaris, Wilhelm

Joined the German Navy in 1905 and served as a submarine commander in the First World War During the war he also took part in espionage activities in Spain and Italy.  In 1935 appointed as head of the Abwehr, the intelligence unit of the high command of the Wehrmacht (OKW), in which capacity he served until 1944.  According to Wistrich (Who's Who in Nazi Germany, Routledge, 1995) he proved to be "an incompetent diletantte whose judgement was consistently unsound and whose military and political information about the enemy was minimal."  He was dismissed from this post in February 1944 and his association with those involved in the Hitler bomb plot later that year led eventually to his execution in April 1945.

Conti, Dr. Leonardo

Staatssekretaer [State Secretary] and Chief of Health Divisions (Abteilungen III & IV), Reich Ministry of the Interior.  Head of Public Health Department of Party Reichsleitung.

Daleuge, Kurt

Chef der Ordnungspolizei (Chief of the Order Police). Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia (after Reinhard Heydrich's assassination). SS-Obserstgruppenführer.

Doenitz, Karl

Commander and Chief of the German Navy after 1943.  Served in the Navy during World War One where he was successively in the Air Naval Arm and the U-boat section.   In September 1935 he was charged with establishing and developing the U-boat arm of the navy.  Promoted to Vice-Admiral in 1940, Admiral in 1942, and Grand Admiral in 1943 when he took over command of the navy from Erich Raeder.  Tried at the IMT trial of the major German war criminals, he was convicted of crimes against the peace and war crimes and sentenced to ten years imprisonment. 

Eichmann, Adolf

Head of Department IV A4 of the RSHA, and Chief of Sub-section "b", with overall coordinating responsibility for the liquidation of Jewry in areas of Third Reich hegemony. Executed in Israel following his abduction from Argentina and trial in Jerusalem.

Frank, Dr Hans

Governor-General of Poland.  Reich Minister without portfolio.  Leader of the National Socialist Lawyers Bund (1933-1942).  Member of the Reichstag.   President of the International Chamber of Law (1941-42) and of the Academy of German Law.  SS-Obergruppenführer. Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Freisler, Dr. Roland

President of the People's Court. Member of the Academy of German Law.

Frick, Wilhelm

Minister of the Interior (1933-43).  Reichsprotector of Bohemia and Moravia.   SS-Obergruppenführer. Reichsleiter.  Head of Nazi Reichstag delegation. General Plenipotentiary for the Administration of the Reich (1935-1943). Reichsminister without Portfolio (1943-1945). Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.

Funk, Dr. Walter

Reich Minister of Economics. President of the Reichsbank. Plenipotentiary for Economics.

Genzken, Dr Karl

Gruppenfuehrer in the SS and Generalleutnant (Major General) in the Waffen SS;   Chief of the Medical Department of the Waffen SS (Chef des Sanitaetsamts der Waffen SS) .

Gluecks, Richard

Chief of "Amtsgruppe D" in the Economic and Administrative Main Office (WVHA) of the SS. Inspector of Concentration Camps. SS-Gruppenführer.  General-leutnant in the Waffen-SS.

His introduction to work associated with the concentration camps was under the tutelage of Theodor Eicke, who in 1933 was appointed as Commandant of Dachau concentration camp.   Eicke was appointed by Himmler to the post of the first Inspector of Concentration camps in 1934.  Gluecks joined him in 1936 where he was in charge of Eicke's staff at the headquarters of the concentration camps at Oranienburg.  Gluecks succeeded Eicke when the latter took over command of the first SS-Totenkopf Division in November 1939.

Administratively, the concentration camps were managed by Amtsgruppe(bureau) D of the WVHA, the SS Economic and Administrative Head Office, which was commanded by Oswald Pohl.  As head of the concentrastion camp inspectorate he was directly involved in management of the extermination, slave labour, medical experimentation and terror programmes overseen by these institutions.  He was never captured, presumed either dead by suicide, or the victim of assassination by Jewish revenge groups.

Goebbels, Dr. Paul Josef

Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda. Reichspropagandaleiter of the NSDAP. President of the Reich Chamber of Culture. Reich Plenipotentiary for Total War Effort.

Göring, Hermann

Reich Minister for Air. Commander-in-Chief of the Airforce.  Prime Minister of Prussia. President of the Ministerial Council for the Defense of the Reich.   President of the Prussian State Council.  Plenipotentiary for the Four Year Plan.  Head of the Reichswerke Hermann Göring. Reichsmarshall. Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.   Committed suicide before the sentence could be carried out.

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Grese, Irma   

(1923-1945).  S.S. concentration camp supervisor (Aufseherin) at Ravensbrück, Auschwitz-Birkenau and Bergen-Belsen. Further Details

Gross, Dr. Walter

Head of the Racial Policy Department of the NSDAP. Senior official in the NSDAP Chancery. Head of the Science Division in the Ideology Department.

Halder, Franz

Chief of Staff of the OKH (Oberkommando der Wehrmacht) until the summer of 1942.

Nuremberg Affidavit.

Handloser, Dr Siegfried

Generaloberstabsarzt (Lieutenant General, Medical Service); Medical Inspector of the Army (Heeressanitaetsinspekteur); and Chief of the Medical Services of the Armed Forces (Chef des Wehrmachtsanitaetswesens), as of July 1942.

Hess, Rudolf

(1894-1987) Served in the army and airforce during World War I.  An early recruit to the Nazi Party in 1920 he had served also in the Freikorps during the period of social unrest that immediately followed the German surrender. Hess took part in the Beer-Hall Putsch of 1923 and was imprisoned with Hitler and other participants in Landsberg prison.  During that period Hitler wrote Mein Kampf and Hess assisted him in this task, taking down his dictation and contributing certain key ideas relating to the notion of Lebensraum (living space), which later was to justify expansionism eastward. 

Hess had very limited political, organisational or creative potential.  For the most part he served Hitler as an entirely uncritical follower.  Despite the fact that he played very little part in the internal politics of the Party, nor made any substantial contribution to its attainment of power, he was appointed by Hitler deputy leader in 1933.   Given his total subservience to the will of his leader and his failure to display over the years any substantial independence of thought or action, the Nazi elite, including Hitler, were taken by surprise when in May 1941 he piloted a fighter aircraft from Germany to Scotland, bailing out in the vicinity of the estate of the Duke of Hamilton whom he was intent on negotiating with.  His objective was to convince the British government that Germany was not intent on its destruction, that the geo-political interests of Britain and Germany were sufficiently disparate to permit each to pursue them without coming into conflict with the other.  Imprisoned by the British, the Propaganda machine of the Third Reich explained his behaviour as a lapse into insantity.

Rudolf Hess was tried and convicted at Nuremberg in 1946, and sentenced to life imprisonment.  Unlike virtually all other Nazis convicted by allied military and civilian tribunals Hess served a life term, despite the fact that his `crimes' were hardly any more serious than those of many others who received similar sentences.  Interned in Berlin's Spandau prison, Hess died there is 1987 at the age of ninety-two.

Heydrich, Reinhard

Second most powerful SS leader after Himmler.  Chief of the RSHA (Reichssicherheithauptampt). Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia.  Assassinated by Czech partisans in 1942.  

Himmler, Heinrich

Reichsführer SS und Chef der Deutschen Polizei.  Reich Commissar for the Strengthening of German Folkdom. Reich Minister of the Interior (1943-45).

Born in Munich, Germany, 1900.  After an uneventful upbringing and schooling and a brief period in the army at the tail end of the First World War, he obtained a diploma in agriculture in 1922.  Along with many others who had served in the armed forces during the War, the defeat and subsequent social turmoil in early phases of the Wiemar Republic drew him to involvement with right-wing nationalist groups.  He joined the NSDAP in 1925.   His power base in the party, and the source of his subsequent influence in the Third Reich derived from his appointment as leader of the SS, [in progress]

Hitler, Adolf

Generaloberst Fritz Halder, gave the following description of Hiter's character in the course of the German High Command Trial:

"" This is a very difficult task. A personality which was so unusual is difficult to sketch with very few words. The picture which I gained of Hitler is as follows : An unusual power of intellect ; an amazingly quick comprehension ; but not a trained person who could adapt himself to logical lines of thought ; a person with very strong emotional tendencies ; his decisions were conditioned by what he called intuition, that is his emotions, but no clear logically thought-out considerations ; his intellect also included an amazing power of imagination and phantasy which in an astonishing degree had its repercussion in his lines of thought or events ; substantial parts of his character were a tremendous tenacity and energy of will-power which also enabled him to surmount all obstacles, even in minor matters. The thing that most impressed me about Hitler was the complete absence of any ethical or moral obligation ; a man for whom there were no limits which he could not transcend by his action or his will ; he knew only his purpose and the advantage that he pursued ; that for him was the imperative call. As far as it seemed to me, he was a very lonely man who lacked the capacity to enter into personal contact with other human beings and thus to relax and to release his personality. He was thus always torn by tension which made co-operation with him extremely difficult. I was not prepared for your question, Your Honour. This is a question about which many books will yet be written, and I shall be grateful to your Honours if you would be satisfied with this brief sketch of mine." (Source, p.15)

Jodl, Alfred


Operations Department of the Army (Heer), 1932-35.
Chief of the National Defense Section in the High Command of the Armed Forces (Abteilung Landesverteidigung im OKW), 1935-Oct. 1938.
Artillery Commander ("Artillerie Kommundeur") of the 44th Divison. Vienna and Brno, Oct 1938-27 Aug. 1939.
Chief of Operation Staff of the High Command of the Armed Forces (Chef des Wehrmachtsfuhrungstabes in Oberkommando der Wehrmacht), August 1939-1945.

Dates of Promotion: 1932-Major and Oberstleutnant
1940-General der Artillerie
1944 Generaloberst (2865-PS) .

Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgement

Kaltenbrunner, Dr. Ernst

Chief of the SS RSHA (Reichssicherheithauptampt) after the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich. Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Keitel, Wilhelm

   Chief of the Armed Forces Department in the Reichs Ministry of War ( Wehrmachtsamt in Reichskriegsministerium), 1 October 1935 to 4 February 1938. (3019-PS)
   Chief of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces (Chief of OKW), equal in rank to a Reichs Minister. (1915-PS)
   Member of the Secret Cabinet Council, 4 February 1938 to 1945. (2031-PS)
   Member of Ministerial Council for the defense of the Reich, 30 August 1939 to 1945. (2018-PS)
   Member of Reichs Defense Council, 4 September 1938 to 1945. (2194-PS)
   Field Marshal, July 1940 to 1945. (3020-PS) [Numbers in brackets refer to documents in the Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression Series]

Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946; carried out October 16.

Keitel was the most senior officer of the OKW and served as Chief of the High Command for the period 1938 to 1945.  During the First World War he served as an artillery officer, joining the Freikorps in 1919.  Between 1929 and his appointment as Chief of the High Command he served successively as head of the Army Organization Department and head of the Armed Forces Office at the War Ministry.

He was Hitler's most important and closest military adviser and, in the opinion of many other senior officers, entirely subservient to his wishes and an enthusiastic implementer of his strategic vision.  This subservience, as well as a shared conservative and nationalist Weltanschauung, led him to unreflectingly pursue the war on the Eastern fronts as a war of extermination (Vernichtungskreig), implicating himself in the decisions to exterminate the Polish intelligentsia, cooperate with the SS in their carrying out of a programme of massacres directed at Jews, Commissars, Partisans and USSR civilians, and similar. 

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Kramer, Josef

Lahousen, Erwin

Born in Vienna,1897. Professional soldier, sereved as a junior infantry officer in the First World War. Entered Austrian War School for General Staff training. After graduating served as an intelligence officer with the Second Austrian Division. In 1936 promoted to lieutenant colonel of the Austrian General Staff, where he served in the Intelligence Division. After the Anschluss served in the Abwehr, the intelligence organisation of the High Command of the German Armed Forces (OKW), Division I .

Belonged to what he referred to as the Canaris circle, composed of a number of senior Abwehr officers who were opposed to Hitler's policies of aggressive expansion, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, some of whom were executed following the failed 20 July (1944) bomb plot. He was an important witness to  meetings with senior OKW officers (Keitel, Jodl, Reinecke) at which major strategic issues relating to the handling of certain aspects of the war, particularly relating to war crimes and crimes against humanity, were discussed, and he provided evidence for the prosecution at Nuremberg on these issues, for which see his Affidavit and  Testimony.

Koch, Erich

Oberpraesident and Gauleiter of Ostpreussen (East Prussia).  SS-Grupenführer.   Reich Commissioner of Ukraine.

Lammers, Dr. Hans Heinrich

Reichsminister.  Chief of the Reich Chancery.  SS-Obergruppenführer.   Member of and Secretary to the Secret Cabinet.  Member of the Academy of German Law.

Ley, Robert

Reichsleiter.  Chief, Party Organization.  Leader of the German Labour Front.   Reich Housing Commissioner.  Indicted before the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg. Committed suicide in prison on 25 October 1945, one week after the indictment had been lodged.

List, Wilhelm

Born 1880. Professional soldier, served as a General Staff officer during the First World War. Was a member of the Freikorps in 1919, and served in the Reichswehr between 1923 and 1926 before joining the Army Organization Department in the Reichswehr Ministry.  In 1930 he was made Major General and commanded the infantry school in Dresden.  Promoted to Generaloberst in 1939, and commanded armies during the invasions of Poland and France.  After the fall of France was made General Field Marshal. 

"ist, was Commander-in-Chief of the Twelfth Army during the German invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece, and, in addition thereto, in June 1941, became the Wehrmacht Commander Southeast, a position which he retained until illness compelled his temporary retirement from active service on 15th October, 1941. In the latter position he was the supreme representative of the Wehrmacht in the Balkans and exercised executive authority in the territory occupied by German troops. Among the duties assigned to him was the safeguarding of the unified defence of those parts of Serbia and Greece, including the Greek Islands, which were occupied by German troops, against attacks and unrest. (Source)"

During operation Barbarossa List was in command of Army Group A, Caucasus, until September 1942 when he was relieved of his command and dismissed from the army due to his inability to break Russian resistance. In July 1947 List was indicted, along with others, for war crimes before a United States military tribunal, in what is known as The Hostages Case. He was sentenced to life imprisonment but released in 1953. (See also, R Wistrich/Who's Who in Nazi Germany, 1995)  

Lohse, Heinrich

Gauleiter, Oberpraesident and Reich Defense Commissioner Schlesswig-Holstein.   Reich Commissioner "Ostland".  President of the Nordic Society.

Meyer, Kurt

Born in 1910. A 'strident nationalist' he joined the Hitler Youth and was involved heavily in extensive street battles with Communists and socialists during the early to mid-twenties.  Later he joined the police and the SS.  He joined the 1st SS Division, participated in the invasion of Poland where he was wounded and decorated.  On the western front he took part in the invasion of the Netherlands.

"In battle, Meyer was always a man on the go, seeing for himself what was going on at the front and directing the battler from there.  During the invasion of Greece in 1941, Meyer's battalion became bogged down in a mountain pass.  Personally taking over an assault group, Meyer pulled out a hand grenade and threw it just behind the last of his troops. The men got the message...  In the Soviet Union he displayed the same aggressiveness, taking units far behind enemy lines and then fighting his way out again.  At the age of thirty-two, his face had appeared on the front of newspapers as one of the Reich's most revered heroes." (Brode, p.19) 

In early 1943 Meyer was transferred to the 12th SS Division, which was recruiting seventeen and eighteen-year-olds directly from the Hitler Youth in response to the Reich's military manpower crisis. Meyer took over command of the 25th Panzer Grenadier Regiment. 

Deployed against Canadian and British troops in the Caen region following the invasion of Normandy, Meyer was appointed commander of the 12th SS Division following the death of its commander on June 16th, and became the youngest division commander in the German army.  He was captured by American troops in September 1944. 

A SHAEF (Supreme Headquarters Allied European Forces) Court of Inquiry established that soldiers of the 12th SS Division had been responsible for carrying out numerous atrocities, including 12 verified incidents at Authie-Buron in which 27 Canadian prisoners had been executed.  At the Chateau d'Adrieu 19 prisoners had been executed.  In total, the supplementary report issued by the inquiry recorded 31 confirmed incidents in which 107 Allied soldiers had died, most of whom were Canadians. The court concluded that "the conduct of the 12th SS Panzer Division (Hitler Jugend) presented a consistent pattern of brutality and ruthlessness.  ...the conclusion is  irresistible that it was understood throughout the Division, if not actually ordered, that a policy of denying quarter or executing prisoners after interrogation was impliedly if not openly approved by the Regimental and Divisional Commanders." (ibid, p.24)

Kurt Meyer was charged with war crimes relating to the above mentioned incidents before a Canadian military tribunal, which convened between December 10th and 28th, 1945.  The Abbaye Ardene Case was the first in Europe to confront directly the issue of command responsibility of a senior commander, although in the Far East the matter had been raised in the context of the trial of Masaharu Homma for war crimes committed during the Bataan Death March, and the  Yamashita case had, coincidentally, been decided three days before the beginning of Meyer's trial. . 

He was convicted of three of the five charges in the charges sheet, and sentenced by the tribunal to death. This was commuted to life imprisonment.  

The commutation was a somewhat bizarre affair, as was much else in the conduct of war crimes trials and investigations by the Canadians.  First, an appeal for clemency had been lodged by Meyer, which was rejected by Major-General Chris Vokes, the convening officer of the court, and the commanding officer of Canadian forces in Germany.  In that context he noted: “I have considered this appeal and cannot see my way clear to mitigate the punishment awarded by the Court.” (Brode, p.102) The prosecutor, Lieutenant-Colonel Bruce Macdonald, who had been the prime mover in drawing up the regulations under which the military tribunals operated, had included a clause to the effect that those convicted should have the right of a final appeal  to someone not connected to the trial itself, namely, the senior commanding officer in the theatre, who, in terms of section 14, “shall have the power to mitigate or remit the punishment thereby awarded, or to commute such punishment for any lesser punishment.”

 Macdonald inquired a few days after the clemency had been rejected whether this procedure had been carried out. Not only had it not, but no one seemed aware of the fact that a review was necessary.  As a result of his inquiry, it was reviewed.  The senior commanding officer, however, was Major-General ChrisVokes, the same officer who had already rejected the appeal for clemency. This time around, however, he decided to commute the sentence to life imprisonment. 

Meyer was released from prison in 1954, and died in 1961, having taken a leading role in HIAG, the Waffen SS veterans association. 

Source: Brode, Patrick. Casual Slaughters and Accidental Judgments: Canadian War Crimes Prosecutions, 1944-48. Toronto: Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History, 1997 [A very substantial part of this work is concerned with Meyer and the conduct of his trial, sentencing, and subsequent release.]

Mueller, Heinrich

1901-1945? Head of Amt IV in the Reich Main Security Office (RSHA) from 1939, and one of the most influential officials of the SS involved directly in the extermination of European Jewry.  Served in the air force during World War I where he won the Iron Cross, 1st Class, on the Russian front. After the war he served in the Bavarian political police where he developed expertise in surveillance of communists and other potentially subversive groups, including the NSDAP.  Brought to Berlin by Reinhard Heydrich, he was  initially in charge of the Secret Political Police, Dept II, with responsibilities for surveillance and control of communists, Marxists, oppositional groups, Austrian affairs, and the concentration camps.  He was, according to Padfield, "an archetypal middle-rank official: of limited imagination, non-political, non-ideological, his only fanaticism lay in an inner drive to perfection in his profession and his duty to the state-which in his mind were one.  That the state happened to be Hitler's Third Reich was a matter of circumstance". (pp.144-45).  This is borne out by the viewpoint expressed by Bavarian Gau headquarters that he would have served any master with the same degree of dedication and enthusiasm so long as his career aspirations could be advanced. (Höhne, pp.162-63)  He rose rapidly. In 1939 he assumed control of Amt IV, the Gestapo.  He moved in rank from SS Colonel in 1937 to SS Lieutenant-General and Police Chief in November 1941.   His enthusiasm for carrying out a task thoroughly was reflected in his commitment to the solution of the Jewish problem. As Wistrich notes, he was more directly involved in their extermination programme than either Himmler or Heydrich: "He signed the circulating order requiring the immediate delivery to Auschwitz by 31 January 1943 of 45,000 Jews for extermination and countless other documents of the same tenor, which reveal his zeal in carrying out orders.  In the summer of 1943 he was sent to Rome to pressurize the Italians, who were proving singularly inefficient and unenthusiastic in arresting Jews.  ...In his hands, mass murder became an automatic administrative procedure."(p.174)  He was also directly involved in the notorious roundup and execution of British and Dominion air force officers who had escaped from Stalag Luft III, fifty of whom were executed on capture.  His last known whereabouts was the Führer bunker, on 17 May 1945. Like many others who escaped judicial accountability, he was rumored to have been seen in various countries subsequently.

Sources: R Wistrich/Who's Who in Nazi Germany; H Höhne/The Order of the Death's Head; M M Boatner III/The Biographical Dictionary of World War II; P Padfield/Himmler: Reichsführer SS.

Naumann, Erich

Brigadefuehrer (brigadier general) in the SS ; member of the SD ; Commanding Officer of Einsatzgruppe B

Nebe, Arthur

1894-1945?  Senior police official in Weimar and the Third Reich.  Having joined the police after WWI, he progressed from commissioner in 1924, to head of the criminal police agency in the Prussian Ministry of the Interior.  By 1931 he was a member of the NSDAP and the SS and in 1933 was appointed to head the criminal police of the Third Reich, the KRIPO.  By 1939 he was a SS-Gruppenführer at the head of AMT V of the Reich Main Security Office (RSHA), a position that he held until 1943, when he was succeeded by Panzinger.  Between June and November 1941 he commanded Einsatzgruppe B.  The liquidation activities were not much to his liking, and he requested to be relieved from those duties. His involvement in the plot that led to the July 1944 attempt to assassinate Hitler, caused him to flee into hiding after its failure.  His final fate is not known.  According to some he was executed in March 1945; others claim that he was in hiding in Italy and Ireland.  

Sources: R Wistrich/Who's Who in Nazi Germany; H Höhne/The Order of the Death's Head; M M Boatner III/The Biographical Dictionary of World War II. 

Ohlendorf, Otto

Head of AMT III SD (Sicherheitsdienst des RfSS) of the SS. Einsatzgruppen Commander. Gruppenfuehrer (major general) in the Schutzstaffeln der Nationalsozialistischen Deutschen Arbeiterpartei (commonly known as the "SS") ; member of the Reichssicherheitsdienst des Reichsfuehrer SS (commonly known as the "SD") ; Commanding Officer of Einsatzgruppe D

SS Career resumé
Affidavit, 20 November 1945

Pohl, Oswald

Chief of the Administration and Economic Main Office of the SS (Wirtschafts-und Verwaltungshauptamt). General der Waffen-SS.

Raeder, Erich

Joined the navy in 1894 and served as an officer in staff and fleet operations during the First World War.  Promoted to Vice-Admiral in 1925 and Admiral and Chief of Naval Command in 1928.  In 1935 Hitler promoted him to Generaladmiral and charged him with rebuilding German naval power.  In 1939 promoted again, this time to Grand Admiral.   Raeder was responsible for adoption of the policy of unrestricted submarine warfare which his successor used very effectively by deploying submarines in wolf packs.   Although a believer in National Socialism, and an admirer of Hitler, their were important strategic differences between the two, most notably on the two-front issue, which led to his being retired in 1943.  Like his successor, Karl Doenitz, he was tried by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg with the other major German war criminals.  The charges were crimes against the peace and war crimes and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Rasch, Otto

Brigadefuehrer (brigadier general) in the SS ; member of the SD ; member of the Geheime Staatspolizei (commonly known as the "Gestapo") ; Commanding Officer of Einsatzgruppe C

Roehm (Röhm), Ernst

Chief of Staff of the SA.

Rosenberg, Alfred

Born 1893 in Estonia, of parents of German extraction.   Studied at the universities of Riga (engineering) and Moscow (architecture). Left Russia in 1917 after the revolution. His contacts with extreme nationalist groupings in France and Germany "reinforced his obsession with the nefarious role of Jews, Bolsheviks and Freemasons" (Wistrich) He was one of the earliest members of the German Workers National Socialist Party, having joined in 1919.  In 1923 he took over as editor of party newspaper, the Völkische Beobachter. Rosenberg readily gained the attention and support of Hitler through his detailed `mastery' of anti-semitic, anti-Bolshevik, ultra-nationalist and racial theorizing.'  This scholarship found expression in books, articles and pamphlets on these subject, drawing inspiration from the anti-Semitic tract The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and the works of Houston Stewart Chamberlain, Comte de Gobineau,  and other racist literati.  His early works included The Tracks of the Jews Through the Ages, Immorality in the Talmud and The Crime of Freemasonry.

When Hitler was imprisoned following the failure of the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923, Rosenberg took over leadership of the NSDAP temporarily.  In 1927 his The Future Direction of German Foreign Policy advocated the conquest of Poland and Russia in order to defend and preserve German racial purity in the face of the expansionist designs of the Bolshevik regime.  In 1934 his Myth of the Twentieth Century, following the path trodden by de Gobineau and Chamberlain, provided an interpretation of historical development in terms of race and race conflict.  The Germans were part of the Nordic group of races who were superior to all others, entitled thereby to dominate lesser races, particularly Semites and Slavs.  Although few could or bothered to follow Rosenberg's tortuous arguments, it was one of the most important tablets of the Nazi movement in terms of "theoretical" influence and copies sold.

In 1941 he was appointed Reichsminister for the Eastern Territories.  In practice he had little influence in the face of competition for the exercise of power, particularly from Himmler and the SS, but also from the military and some of his nominal subordinates. Although his theoretical discourse placed him at the most radical end of Nazi ideological plans for the restructuring of conquered living space in the east, in practice he was less inclined to adopt ruthless and brutal measures than were many of the numerous Nazi agencies active in these territories.  Despite this, he was included among the senior Nazi leaders tried at Nuremberg and hanged in 1946.

R S Wistrich Who's Who in Nazi Germany. London: Routledge, 1995
Encyclopedia Britannica CD-ROM 1998

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Saukel, Fritz

Reichstatthalter, Reich Defense Commissioner and Gauleiter of Thuringia; Plenipotentiary-general for Manpower (Four Year Plan); SS-Obergruppenfuehrer; SA-Obergruppenfuehrer; Member of the Reichstag.

Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Schellenberg, Walter

Chief of Security Service, Occupied Terriroties (Amt VI) in Reich Main Security Office; Chief of Military Office RSHA; SS-Brigadefuehrer.

Affidavit of Walter Schellenberg, 23 January 1946

Seyss-Inquart, Dr Artur

(a) Member of the NSDAP (Nazi Party), 13 March 1938 to 8 May 1945.
(b) General in the SS, 15 March 1938 to 8 May 1945.
(c) State Councillor of Austria, May 1937 to 12 February 1938.
(d) Minister of Interior and Security of Austria, 16 February 1938 to 11 March 1938.
(e) Chancellor of Austria, 11 March 1938 to 15 March 1938.
(f) Member of the Reichstag, April 1938 to 8 May 1945.
(g) Member of the Reich Cabinet, 1 May 1939 to 1945.
(h) Reich Minister without Portfolio, 1 May 1939 to September 1939.
(i) Chief of the Civil Administration of South Poland, early September 1939.
(j) Deputy Governor-General of the Polish Occupied Territory, 12 October 1939 to 18 May 1940.
(k) Reich Commissar for Occupied Netherlands 18 May 1940 to 8 May 1945. (2910-PS)

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Speer, Albert

Reichsleiter; Reichminister for Armaments and War Production; head of the Organization Todt; General Plenipotentiary for Armaments in the Four Year plan; head of Armaments Office of German High Command; Member of Reichstag; member of Central Planning Board.

Strasser, Gregor

Leader of Sturmabteilung (SA-Storm Troops) in Lower Bavaria; Reich Organization Leader until 1932.  Executed along with Ernst Roehm and other senior SA leaders on June 30, 1934, known as the "night of the long knives".


Chief of the Personnel Office of the Reich Security Main Office (RSHA)

Streicher, Julius

Gauleiter of Franconia; Editor and Publisher of Der Stuermer; SS-Obergruppenfuehrer; Member of Reichstag. Sentenced to death by the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg, on October 1, 1946.

Nuremberg Tribunal Charges
Nuremberg Tribunal Judgment

Thierack, Otto

Minister of Justice

Wisleceny, Dieter

Hauptsturmfuehrer in Slovakia; Specialist on Jewish matters in Slovakia with Amt IV A4, RSHA, 1940-1944

Affidavit sworn before IMT investigators, 29 November 1946

Wolff, Karl

Supreme SS and Police Commander in Italy; Commander of the Italian SS Legion; General of the Waffen-SS at the Fuehrer's headquarters; chief of the personal staff of the Reichssfuehrung SS; SS-Obergruppenfuehrer.

Document compiled by Dr S D Stein
Last update 11/09/02 22:22:06
©S D Stein

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