Source: Trial of the Major War Criminals before the International Military Tribunal, Vol.1, Nuremberg, 1947, pp. 27-28, 42-68

[For information on the referencing of Internet sources see Chapter 4 of S D Stein Learning, Teaching and Researching on the Internet. Addison Wesley Longman 1999, published November 1998] 


Part III

[* This text of the Indictment has been corrected in accordance with the Prosecution's motion of 4 June 1946 which was accepted by the Court 7 June 1946 to rectify certain discrepancies between the German text and the text in other languages.]

Part I
Part II

Plunder of Public and Private Property (Second Part)
The Exaction of Collective Penalties
Wanton Destruction of Cities, Towns and Villages
Conscription of Civilian Labour
Forcing Civilians of Occupied Territories to Swear Allegiance to a Hostile Power
Germanization of Occupied Territories

Count Four-Crimes Against Humanity/Statement of the Offense

Murder, Extermination, Enslavement, Deportation, and other Inhumane Acts Committed Against Civilian Populations Before and During the War

Persecution on Political, Racial, and Religious Grounds in Execution of and in Connection with the Common Plan Mentioned in Count One

2. Eastern Countries:

During the occupation of the Eastern Countries the German Government and the German High Command carried out, as a systematic policy, a continuous course of plunder and destruction including:

On the territory of the Soviet Union the Nazi conspirators destroyed or severely damaged 1,710 cities and more than 70,000 villages and hamlets, more than 6,000,000 buildings and made homeless about 25,000,000 persons.

Among the cities which suffered most destruction are Stalingrad, Sevastopol, Kiev, Minsk, Odessa, Smolensk, Novgorod, Pskov, Orel, Kharkov, Voronezh, Rostov-on-Don, Stalino, and Leningrad.

As is evident from an official memorandum of the German command, the Nazi conspirators planned the complete annihilation of entire Soviet cities. In a completely secret order of the Chief of the Naval Staff (Staff Ia No. 1601/ 41, dated 29. IX. 1941) addressed only to Staff officers, it was said:

"The Führer has decided to erase from the face of the earth St. Petersburg. The existence of this large city will have no further interest after Soviet Russia is destroyed. Finland has also said that the existence of this city on her new border is not desirable from her point of view. The original request of the Navy that docks, harbor, etc. necessary for the fleet be preserved-is known to the Supreme Commander of the Military Forces, but the basic principles of carrying out operations against St. Petersburg do not make it possible to satisfy this request.

"It is proposed to approach near to the city and to destroy it with the aid of an artillery barrage from weapons of different calibers and with long air attacks. . . .

"The problem of the life of the population and the provisioning of them is a problem which cannot and must not be decided by us.

"In this war . . .we are not interested in preserving even a part of the population of this large city."

The Germans destroyed 427 museums, among them the wealthy museums of Leningrad, Smolensk, Stalingrad, Novgorod, Poltava, and others.

In Pyatigorsk the art objects brought there from the Rostov museum were seized.

The losses suffered by the coal mining industry alone in the Stalin region amount to 2,000,000,000 rubles. There was colossal destruction of industrial establishments in Makerevka, Carlovka, Yenakievo, Konstantinovka, Mariupol, from which most of the machinery and factories were removed.

Stealing of huge dimensions and the destruction of industrial, cultural, and other property was typified in Kiev. More than 4,000,000 books, magazines, and manuscripts (many of which were very valuable and even unique) and a large number of artistic productions and valuables of different kinds were stolen and carried away.

Many valuable art productions were taken away from Riga.

The extent of the plunder of cultural valuables is evidenced by the fact that 100,000 valuable volumes and 70 cases of ancient periodicals and precious monographs were carried away by ROSENBERG'S staff alone.

Among further examples of these crimes are:

Wanton devastation of the city of Novgorod and of many historical and artistic monuments there. Wanton devastation and plunder of the city of Rovno and of its province. The destruction of the industrial, cultural, and other property in Odessa. The destruction of cities and villages in Soviet Karelia. The destruction in Estonia of cultural, industrial, and other buildings.

The destruction of medical and prophylactic institutes, the destruction of agriculture and industry in Lithuania, the destruction of cities in Latvia.

The Germans approached monuments of culture, dear to the Soviet people, with special hatred. They broke up the estate of the poet Pushkin in Mikhailovskoye, desecrating his grave, and destroying the neighboring villages and the Svyatogor monastery.

They destroyed the estate and museum of Leo Tolstoy, "Yasnaya Polyana," and desecrated the grave of the great writer. They destroyed in Klin the museum of Tchaikovsky and in Penaty, the museum of the painter Repin and many others.

The Nazi conspirators destroyed 1,670 Greek Orthodox churches, 237 Roman Catholic churches, 67 chapels, 532 synagogues, etc. They broke up, desecrated, and senselessly destroyed also the most valuable monuments of the Christian Church, such as Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra, Novy Jerusalem in the Istrin region, and the most ancient monasteries and churches.

Destruction in Estonia of cultural, industrial, and other premises: burning down of many thousands of residential buildings; removal of 10,000 works of art; destruction of medical and prophylactic institutions; plunder and removal to Germany of immense quantities of agricultural stock including horses, cows, pigs, poultry, beehives, and agricultural machines of all kinds.

Destruction of agriculture, enslavement of peasants, and looting of stock and produce in Lithuania.

In the Latvian Republic destruction of the agriculture by the looting of all stock, machinery, and produce.

The result of this policy of plunder and destruction was to lay waste the land and cause utter desolation.

The overall value of the material loss which the U. S. S. R. has borne, is computed to be 679,000,000,000 rubles, in state prices of 1941.

Following the occupation of Czechoslovakia on 15 March 1939 the defendants seized and stole large stocks of raw materials, copper, tin, iron, cotton, and food; caused to be taken to Germany, large amounts of railway rolling stock, and many engines, carriages, steam vessels, and trolley buses; plundered libraries, laboratories, and art museums of books, pictures, objects of art, scientific apparatus, and furniture; stole all gold reserves and foreign exchange of Czechoslovakia, including 23,000 kilograms of gold of a nominal value of £ 5,265,000; fraudulently acquired control and thereafter looted the Czech banks and many Czech industrial enterprises; and otherwise stole, looted, and misappropriated Czechoslovak public and private property. The total sum of defendants' economic spoliation of Czechoslovakia from 1938 to 1945 is estimated at 206,000,000,000 Czechoslovak crowns.


The Germans pursued a systematic policy of inflicting, in all the occupied countries, collective penalties, pecuniary and otherwise, upon the population for acts of individuals for which it could not be regarded as collectively responsible; this was done at many places, including Oslo, Stavanger, Trondheim, and Rogaland.

Similar instances occurred in France, among others in Dijon, Nantes, and as regards the Jewish population in the occupied territories. The total amount of fines imposed on French communities add up to 1,157,179,484 francs made up as follows:

A fine on the Jewish population . . . . . . . . . . . 1,000,000,000
Various fines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . .157,179,484

These acts violated Article 50, Hague Regulations, 1907, the laws and customs of war, the general principles of criminal law as derived from the criminal laws of all civilized nations, the internal penal laws of the countries in which such crimes were committed, and Article 6 (b) of the Charter.


The defendants wantonly destroyed cities, towns, and villages and committed other acts of devastation without military justification or necessity. These acts violated Articles 46 and 50 of the Hague Regulations, 1907, the laws and customs of war, the general principles of criminal law as derived from the criminal laws of all civilized nations, the internal penal laws of the countries in which such crimes were committed, and Article 6 (b) of the Charter.

Particulars by way of example only and without prejudice to the production of evidence of other cases are as follows:

1. Western Countries:

In March 1941, part of Lofoten in Norway was destroyed.

In April 1942, the town of Telerag in Norway was destroyed.

Entire villages were destroyed in France, among others Oradour-sur- Glane, Saint-Nizier and, in the Vercors, La Mure, Vassieux, La Chapelle en Vercors. The town of Saint Die was burnt down and destroyed. The Old Port District of Marseilles was dynamited in the beginning of 1943 and resorts along the Atlantic and the Mediterranean coasts, particularly the town of Sanary, were demolished.

In Holland there was most widespread and extensive destruction, not justified by military necessity, including the destruction of harbors, locks, dikes, and bridges: immense devastation was also caused by inundations which equally were not justified by military necessity.

2. Eastern Countries:

In the Eastern Countries the defendants pursued a policy of wanton destruction and devastation: some particulars of this (without prejudice to the production of evidence of other cases) are set out above under the heading "Plunder of Public and Private Property".

In Greece the villages of Amelofito, Kliston, Kizonia, Messovunos, Selli, Ano-Kerzilion, and Kato-Kerzilion were utterly destroyed.

In Yugoslavia on 15 August 1941, the German military command officially announced that the village of Skela was burned to the ground and the inhabitants killed on the order of the command.

On the order of the Field Commander Hoersterberg a punitive expedition from the SS troops and the field police destroyed the villages of Machkovats, and Kriva Reka in Serbia and all the inhabitants were killed.

General Fritz Neidhold (369 Infantry Division) on 11 September 1944, gave an order to destroy the villages of Zagniezde and Udora, hanging all the men and driving away all the women and children.

In Czechoslovakia the Nazi conspirators also practiced the senseless destruction of populated places. Lezaky and Lidice were burned to the ground and the inhabitants killed.


Throughout the occupied territories the defendants conscripted and forced the inhabitants to labor and requisitioned their services for purposes other than meeting the needs of the armies of occupation and to an extent far out of proportion to the resources of the countries involved. All the civilians so conscripted were forced to work for the German war effort. Civilians were required to register and many of those who registered were forced to join the Todt Organization and the Speer Legion, both of which were semi-military organizations involving some military training. These acts violated Articles 46 and 52 of the Hague Regulations, 1907, the laws and customs of war, the general principles of criminal law as de-rived from the criminal laws of all civilized nations, the internal penal laws of the countries in which such crimes were committed, and Article 6 (b) of the Charter.

Particulars, by way of example only and without prejudice to the production of evidence of other cases, are as follows:

1. Western Countries:

In France, from 1942 to 1944, 963,813 persons were compelled to work in Germany and 737,000 to work in France for the German Army.

In Luxembourg in 1944 alone, 2,500 men and 500 girls were conscripted for forced labor.

2. Eastern Countries:

Of the large number of citizens of the Soviet Union and of Czechoslovakia referred to under Count Three VIII (B) 2 above many were so conscripted for forced labor.


Civilians who joined the Speer Legion, as set forth in paragraph (H) above, were required, under threat of depriving them of food, money, and identity papers, to swear a solemn oath acknowledging unconditional obedience to Adolf Hitler, the Führer of Germany, which was to them a hostile power.

In Lorraine, civil servants were obliged, in order to retain their positions, to sign a declaration by which they acknowledged the "return of their country to the Reich", pledged themselves to obey without reservation the orders of their chiefs and put themselves "at the active service of the Führer and the Great National Socialist Germany".

A similar pledge was imposed on Alsatian civil servants by threat of deportation or internment. These acts violated Article 45 of the Hague Regulations, 1907, the laws and customs of war, the general principles of international law, and Article 6 (b) of the Charter.


In certain occupied territories purportedly annexed to Germany the defendants methodically and pursuant to plan endeavored to assimilate those territories politically, culturally, socially, and economically into the German Reich. The defendants endeavored to obliterate the former national character of these territories. In pursuance of these plans and endeavors, the defendants forcibly deported inhabitants who were predominantly non-German and introduced thousands of German colonists.

This plan included economic domination, physical conquest, installation of puppet governments, purported de jure annexation and enforced conscription into the German Armed Forces. This was carried out in most of the occupied countries including: Norway, France (particularly in the Departments of Upper Rhine, Lower Rhine, Moselle, Ardennes, Aisne, Nord, Meurthe and Moselle), Luxembourg, the Soviet Union, Denmark, Belgium, and Holland.

In France in the Departments of Aisne, Nord, Meurthe and Moselle, and especially in that of Ardennes, rural properties were seized by a German state organization which tried to have them exploited under German direction; the landowners of these exploitations were dispossessed and turned into agricultural laborers.

In the Department of Upper Rhine, Lower Rhine, and Moselle, the methods of Germanization were those of annexation followed  by conscription.

1. From the month of August 1940, officials who refused to take the oath of allegiance to the Reich were expelled. On 21 September expulsions and deportation of populations began and on 22 November 1940, more than 70,000 Lorrainers or Alsatians were driven into the south zone of France. From 31 July 1941 onwards, more than 100,000 persons were deported into the eastern regions of the Reich or to Poland. All the property of the deportees or expelled persons was confiscated. At the same time, 80,000 Germans coming from the Saar or from Westphalia were installed in Lorraine and 2,000 farms belonging to French people were transferred to Ger mans.

2. From 2 January 1942, all the young people of the Departments of Upper Rhine and Lower Rhine, aged from 10 to 18 years, were incorporated in the Hitler Youth. The same thing was done in Moselle from 4 August 1942. From 1940 all the French schools were closed, their staffs expelled, and the German school system was introduced in the three Departments.

3. On the 28 September 1940, an order applicable to the Department of Moselle ordained the Germanization of all the surnames and Christian names which were French in form. The same thing was done from 15 January 1943, in the Departments of Upper Rhine and Lower Rhine.

4. Two orders from 23 to 24 August 1942 imposed by force German nationality on French citizens.

5. On 8 May 1941, for Upper Rhine and Lower Rhine, 23 April 1941, for Moselle, orders were promulgated enforcing compulsory labor service on all French citizens of either sex aged from 17 to 25 years. From 1 January 1942 for young men and from 26 January 1942 for young girls, national labor service was effectively organized in Moselle. It was from 27 August 1942 in Upper Rhine and in Lower Rhine for young men only. The classes 1940, 1941, 1942 were called up.

6. These classes were retained in the Wehrmacht on the expiration of their time and labor service. On 19 August 1942, an order instituted compulsory military service in Moselle. On 25 August 1942, the classes 1940-44 were called up in three departments. Conscription was enforced by the German authorities in conformity with the provisions of German legislation. The first revision boards took place from 3 September 1942. Later in Upper Rhine and Lower Rhine new levies were effected everywhere on classes 1928 to 1939 inclusive. The French people who refused to obey these laws were considered as deserters and their families were deported, while their property was confiscated.

These acts violated Articles 43, 46, 55, and 56 of the Hague Regulations, 1907, the laws and customs of war, the general principles of criminal law as derived from the criminal laws of all civilized nations, the internal penal laws of the countries in which such crimes were committed, and Article 6 (b) of the Charter.

IX. Individual, group and organization respomsibility for the offense stated i n Count Three

Reference is hereby made to Appendix A of this Indictment for a statement of the responsibility of the individual defendants for the offense set forth in this Count Three of the Indictment. Reference is hereby made to Appendix B of this Indictment for a statement of the responsibility of the groups and organizations named herein as criminal groups and organizations for the offense set forth in this Count Three of the Indictment.

(Charter, Article 6, especially 6 (c))

X. Statement of t h e Offense

All the defendants committed Crimes against Humanity during a period of years preceding 8 May 1945 in Germany and in all those countries and territories occupied by the German armed forces since 1 September 1939 and in Austria and Czechoslovakia and in Italy and on the High Seas.

All the defendants, acting in concert with others, formulated and executed a common plan or conspiracy to commit Crimes against Humanity as defined in Article 6 (c) of the Charter. This plan involved, among other things, the murder and persecution of all who were or who were suspected of being hostile to the Nazi. Party and all who were or who were suspected of being opposed to the common plan alleged in Count One.

The said Crimes against Humanity were committed by the defendants and by other persons for whose acts the defendants are responsible (under Article 6 of the Charter) as such other persons, when committing the said War Crimes, performed their acts in execution of a common plan and conspiracy to commit the said War Crimes, in the formulation and execution of which plan and conspiracy all the defendants participated as leaders, organizers, instigators, and accomplices.

These methods and crimes constituted violations of international conventions, of internal penal laws, of the general principles of criminal law as derived from the criminal law of all civilized nations and were involved in and part of a systematic course of conduct. The said acts were contrary to Article 6 of the Charter.

The Prosecution will rely upon the facts pleaded under Count Three as also constituting Crimes against Humanity.


For the purposes set out above, the defendants adopted a policy of persecution, repression, and extermination of all civilians in Germany who were, or who were believed to be, or who were believed likely to become, hostile to the Nazi Government and the common plan or conspiracy described in Count One. They imprisoned such persons without judicial process, holding them in "protective custody" and concentration camps, and subjected. them to persecution, degradation, despoilment, enslavement, torture, and murder.

Special courts were established to carry out the will of the conspirators; favored branches or agencies of the State and Party were permitted to operate outside the range even of nazified law and to crush all tendencies and elements which were considered "undesirable". The various concentration camps included Buchenwald, which was established in 1933, and Dachau, which was established in 1934. At these and other camps the civilians were put to slave labor, and murdered and ill-treated by divers means, including those set out in Count Three above, and these acts and policies were continued and extended to the occupied countries after 1 Septem-ber 1939, and until 8 May 1945.


As above stated, in execution of and in connection with the common plan mentioned in Count One, opponents of the German Government were exterminated and persecuted. These persecutions were directed against Jews. They were also directed against persons whose political belief or spiritual aspirations were deemed to be in conflict with the aims of the Nazis.

Jews were systematically persecuted since 1933; they were deprived of their liberty, thrown into concentration camps where they were murdered and ill-treated. Their property was confiscated. Hundreds of thousands of Jews were so treated before 1 Septem-ber 1939.

Since 1 September 1939, the persecution of the Jews was redoubled: millions of Jews from Germany and from the occupied Western Countries were sent to the Eastern Countries for extermination.

Particulars by way of example and without prejudice to the production of evidence of other cases are as follows:

The Nazis murdered amongst others Chancellor Dollfuss, the Social Democrat Breitscheid, and the Communist Thälmann. They imprisoned in concentration camps numerous political and religious personages, for example Chancellor Schuschnigg and Pastor Niemöller.

In November 1938, by orders of the Chief of the Gestapo, anti-Jewish demonstrations all over Germany took place. Jewish property was destroyed, 30,000 Jews were arrested and sent to concentration camps and their property confiscated.

Under paragraph VIII (A), above, millions of the persons there mentioned as having been murdered and ill-treated were Jews.

Among other mass murders of Jews were the following:

At Kislovdosk all Jews were made to give up their property: 2,000 were shot in an anti-tank ditch at Mineraliye Vodi: 4,300 other Jews were shot in the same ditch.

60,000 Jews were shot on an island on the Dvina near Riga.
20,000 Jews were shot at Lutsk.
32,000 Jews were shot at Sarny.
60,000 Jews were shot at Kiev and Dniepropetrovsk.

Thousands of Jews were gassed weekly by means of gas-wagons which broke clown from overwork.

As the Germans retreated before the Soviet Army they exter-minated Jews rather than allow them to be liberated. Many concentration camps and ghettos were set up in which Jews were incarcerated and tortured, starved, subjected to merciless atrocities, and finally exterminated.

About 70,000 Jews were exterminated in Yugoslavia.

XI, Individual, Group and Organization Responsibility for the Offense Stated in Count Four

Reference is hereby made to Appendix A of this Indictment for a statement of the responsibility of the individual defendants for the offense set forth in this Count Four of the Indictment. Reference is hereby made to Appendix B of this Indictment for a statement of the responsibility of the groups and organizations named herein as criminal groups and organizations for the offense set forth in this Count Four of the Indictment.

Wherefore, this Indictment is lodged with the Tribunal in English, French, and Russian, each text having equal authenticity, and the charges herein made against the above named defendants are hereby presented to the Tribunal.

/s/  ROBERT H. JACKSON. Acting on Behalf of the United States of America.

/s/  FRANCOIS DE MENTHON. Acting on Behalf of the French Republic.

/s/  HARTLEY SHAWCROSS. Acting on Behalf of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

/s / R. RUDENKO. Acting on Behalf of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

Berlin, 6 October 1945.

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Part II

Document compiled by Dr S D Stein
Last update 08/02/99
©S D Stein

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