Hitler’s Obersalzberg Speech – Wikipedia

The Obersalzberg Speech is a speech given by Adolf Hitler to Wehrmacht commanders at his Obersalzberg home on 22 August 1939, a week before the German invasion of Poland.[1] The speech details, in particular, the pending German invasion of Poland and a planned extermination of Poles. It shows Hitler’s knowledge of the extermination and his intention to carry out the said genocide in a planned manner.

Three documents were grouped together during Nuremberg Trials which contained Hitler’s speech on 22 August 1939 (1014-PS,[2] 798-PS,[3] and L-3,[4][5]) and only the document L-3 contained the Armenian quote.[6] Documents 1014-PS[4] and 798-PS were captured by the United States forces inside the OKW headquarters[7] but these documents did not contain the Armenian quote. On May 16, 1946, during the Nuremberg War Tribunals, a counsel for one of the defendants, Dr. Walter Siemers requested from the president of the trial to strike out the document 1014-PS,[4] but his request was rejected by the president.[8] Document L-3 was brought to the court by an American journalist, Louis P. Lochner.[7]

According to Louis P. Lochner, while stationed in Berlin he received a copy of a speech by Hitler from his “informant”, which he published (in English translation) in his book What About Germany? (New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1942) as being indicative of Hitler’s desire to conquer the world. In 1945, Lochner handed over a transcript of the German document he had received to the prosecution at the Nuremberg trials, where it was labeled L-3. Hence it is known as the L-3 document. The speech is also found in a footnote to notes about a speech Hitler held in Obersalzberg on 22 August 1939 that were published in the German Foreign Policy documents[4][9] When asked in the Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal who his source was, Lochner said this was a German called “Herr Maasz” but gave vague information about him.[10]

The Times of London quoted from Lochner’s version in an unsigned article titled The War Route of the Nazi Germany on 24 November 1945. The article stated that it had been brought forward by the prosecutor on 23 November 1945, as evidence. However, according to the Akten zur deutschen auswrtigen Politik (ser. D, vol. 7, 1961), the document was not introduced as evidence before the International Military Tribunal for undisclosed reasons and is not included in the official publication of the documents in evidence. Two other documents containing minutes of Hitler’s Obersalzberg speech(es) had been found among the seized German documents and were introduced as evidence, both omitting the Armenian quote.[11]

In Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression (colloquially also known as “the Red Set”), a collection of documents relating to the Nuremberg trials prepared by the prosecutorial team, the editors describe the relation between the documents concerned as follows:[12]

Just one week prior to the launching of the attack on Poland, Hitler made an address to his chief military commanders, at Obersalzberg, on 22 August 1939. [Three reports of this meeting are available: (L-3; 798-PS and 1014-PS). The first of the three documents (L-3) was obtained through an American newspaperman, and purported to be original minutes of the Obersalzberg meeting, transmitted to the newspaperman by some other person. There was no proof of actual delivery to the intermediary by the person who took the notes. That document (L-3) therefore, merely served as an incentive to search for something better. The result was that two other documents (798-PS) and (1014-PS) were discovered in the OKW files at Flensberg [sic]. These two documents indicate that Hitler on that day made two speeches, one apparently in the morning and one in the afternoon. Comparison of those two documents with the first document (L-3) led to the conclusion that the first document was a slightly garbled merger of the two speeches, and therefore was not relied upon.]

The third paragraph of the L-3 document is as follows:

Unsere Strke ist unsere Schnelligkeit und unsere Brutalitt. Dschingis Khan hat Millionen Frauen und Kinder in den Tod gejagt, bewut und frhlichen Herzens. Die Geschichte sieht in ihm nur den groen Staatengrnder. Was die schwache westeuropische Zivilisation ber mich behauptet, ist gleichgltig. Ich habe den Befehl gegeben und ich lasse jeden fsilieren, der auch nur ein Wort der Kritik uert da das Kriegsziel nicht im Erreichen von bestimmten Linien, sondern in der physischen Vernichtung des Gegners besteht. So habe ich, einstweilen nur im Osten, meine Totenkopfverbnde bereitgestellt mit dem Befehl, unbarmherzig und mitleidslos Mann, Weib und Kind polnischer Abstammung und Sprache in den Tod zu schicken. Nur so gewinnen wir den Lebensraum, den wir brauchen. Wer redet heute noch von der Vernichtung der Armenier?

The above is a verbatim rendering of that paragraph, as included in a footnote in the Akten zur deutschen auswrtigen Politik (ser. D, vol. 7, 1961, p.193).

In his book What about Germany?, Lochner offered the following English translation of the document then in his possession:

Our strength consists in our speed and in our brutality. Genghis Khan led millions of women and children to slaughter with premeditation and a happy heart. History sees in him solely the founder of a state. Its a matter of indifference to me what a weak western European civilization will say about me. I have issued the command and Ill have anybody who utters but one word of criticism executed by a firing squad that our war aim does not consist in reaching certain lines, but in the physical destruction of the enemy. Accordingly, I have placed my death-head formation in readiness for the present only in the East with orders to them to send to death mercilessly and without compassion, men, women, and children of Polish derivation and language. Only thus shall we gain the living space (Lebensraum) which we need. Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?[13]

The key area of contention regarding the Armenian quote is a reference to the Armenian Genocide, referencing the ethnic extermination of Armenians during World War I in the Ottoman Empire, where an estimated one to one-and-a-half million ethnic Armenians were killed by Turks.[14][15][16] The quote is now inscribed on one of the walls of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. In 2009 the International Association of Genocide Scholars used the quote in a letter to Barack Obama related to the Armenian Genocide recognition.[17] When the Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal got hold of the first note of the speech, named “L-3”, they rejected its use as evidence because the American newspaperman that provided the document refused to disclose the source.[18][19]

Richard Albrecht(de), a German social researcher and political scientist,[20] published a three-volume study (200608) on 20th century genocides that contained the document of the original German version of the Armenian quote (the L-3 text) for the first time.[21] The book is summarized as “When discussing, and applying, all relevant features scholarly accepted as leading principles of classifying documents as authentic, the author not only works out that the L-3-document as translated and brought in a few days later at 25 August 1939, by the US-newspaper man Louis P. Lochner (18871975) from Associated Press, and first published in 1942, whenever compared with any other version of Hitler’s speech above all the Nuremberg-documents 798-PS, 1014 PS, and Raeder-27, as produced by a dubious witness after realising the L-3-version, too this version must be regarded as the one which most likely sums up and expresses what Hitler said for what Hitler really said in his notorious second speech was only written down simultaneously during his speech by one of his auditors: Wilhelm Canaris (18871945), at that time chief of the military secret service within the Third Reich”.[20]

Dr. Kevork B. Bardakjian, an expert in Armenian studies, also argues that the L-3 document originates in the notes secretly taken by Wilhelm Canaris during the meeting of 22 August 1939:

To conclude, although its author is unknown, L-3 and its unsigned counterparts 798-PS and 1014-PS originate from the notes Wilhelm Canaris took personally as Hitler spoke on 22 August 1939. … Although not an official record, L-3 is a genuine document and is as sound as the other evidence submitted at Nuremberg.[22]

According to German historian Winfried Baumgart, among the documents of Hitler’s speech on 22 August 1938, 1014-PS is the one that contains the original notes taken that day by Wilhelm Canaris, the Head of Military Intelligence during the Third Reich. Therefore, Baumgart argues that the document 1014-PS, which does not contain the Armenian quote, is superior to the other documents of Hitler’s speech including L-3 which is the only source of the Armenian quote.

Historian Vahakn N. Dadrian has argued that Winfried Baumgart’s suggestion that the reference to the Armenians in Hitler’s speech was an editorial coloring up by the editors of the reports is erroneous.:408 At the same time in 1968, de:Edouard Calic, a Yugloslav-Italian historian published a book called Ohne Maske, which claimed to unveil two newly uncovered confidential interviews with Hitler in 1931 containing the Armenian quote.[citation needed] Historians Hugh Trevor-Roper and Hans Mommsen judged Calic’s book to be a forgery.[24]

Abram L. Sachar, an Jewish-American historian, founding president of Brandeis University and former leader of B’nai Brith Hillel Society, wrote: …the genocide was cited approvingly twenty-five years later by the Fuehrer…who found the Armenian ‘solution’ an instructive precedent.[25] This is corroborated by David Matas, a Canadian expert on international law and senior legal counsel of B’nai Brith Canada.[26]Richard Lichtheim(ru), one of the German Jews who, as a young leader of the Zionist movement, feverishly negotiated with Ittihadist leaders in wartime Turkey, described the cold-bloodedly planned extermination of over one million Armenians (kaltblutig durchdacht) as an act of perpetration akin to Hitler’s crusade of destruction against the Jews in the 1940-1942 period.[27]:409

It is also mentioned that the German periodical Die Zeit (Hamburg) mentioned in 1984 that Hitler must have known exactly about the Armenian case of Genocide because one of his closest collaborators at the early stages of the National Socialist movement was Dr. Max Erwin von Scheubner-Richter, i.e. Germany’s former Vice Consul at Erzurum and later Co-Commander of a joint Turko-German Expeditionary guerilla force whose awful reports on the massacre of the Armenians are preserved. The periodical went even one step further asserting that the skills used in the Armenian episode served as an example for Hitler’s similar initiative against the Jews.[28] Scheubner, in one of his World War I reports to his ambassador characterized the city-dwelling Armenians as these Jews of the Orient, these wily businessmen (gerissene Handelsleute).[29]:411412

According to Heath Lowry, a notorious Genocide denier and former Professor of Ottoman and Modern Turkish Studies at Princeton University, a close examination of the quotation reveals that “there is no historical basis for attributing such a statement to Hitler”.[30] German Conservative historian Andreas Hillgruber, once mentioned in 1976 about the L-3 document that the forgery is established beyond doubt (Die Flschung steht zweifelsfrei fest).[31]

According to Margaret L. Anderson, Professor of History at the University of California, Berkeley, “we have no reason to doubt the remark is genuine, both attack and defense obscure an obvious reality” that the Armenian Genocide has achieved “iconic status… as the apex of horrors imaginable in 1939,” and that Hitler used it to persuade the German military that committing genocide excited a great deal of “talk” but no serious consequences for a nation that perpetrates genocide.[32]

According to Christopher Browning, American historian of the Holocaust, L-3 document, which contains the Armenian quote, is an “apocalyptic” version of Hitler’s speech that day which was purposefully leaked to the British in order to gain their support to Poland.[33]

See original here:

Hitler’s Obersalzberg Speech – Wikipedia

Related Post

January 14, 2018   Posted in: Hitler |

Fair Use Disclaimer

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

Under the 'fair use' rule of copyright law, an author may make limited use of another author's work without asking permission. Fair use is based on the belief that the public is entitled to freely use portions of copyrighted materials for purposes of commentary and criticism. The fair use privilege is perhaps the most significant limitation on a copyright owner's exclusive rights.

Fair use as described at 17 U.S.C. Section 107:

"Notwithstanding the provisions of section 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phono-records or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright.

In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:

  • (1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for or nonprofit educational purposes,
  • (2) the nature of the copyrighted work,
  • (3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole, and
  • (4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work."