They took the easy way out

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After all the suffering,death and destruction they caused there were several in the Nazi leadership ,and lower ranks , who were too cowardly to stand trial and killed themselves instead.In this summary I am excluded Hitler, Himmler,Goebbels and Goering because I have already done separate blogs on their suicides.

Eduard Wirths ,

picture above  (4 September 1909 – 20 September 1945) was the Chief SS doctor (SS-Standortarzt) at the Auschwitz concentration camp from September 1942 to January 1945. Thus, Wirths had formal responsibility for everything undertaken by the nearly 20 SS doctors (including Josef Mengele, Horst Schumann and Carl Clauberg) who worked in the medical sections of Auschwitz between 1942–1945.

Wirths was captured by the Allies at the end of the war and held in custody by British forces. Later, on 20 September 1945, knowing that he would surely face trial for numerous war crimes, Wirths committed suicide by hanging.

Johannes Blaskowitz

Johannes Blaskowitz

A German general during World War II and recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords.16822

Blaskowitz was charged with war crimes during the Nuremberg Trials in the High Command Trial (Case No. XII).

In one notorious case he was accused of ordering the execution of 2 deserters after the German surrender. He committed suicide on 5 February 1948: after breaking away from his guards, he threw himself off a balcony into the inner courtyard of the court building

Robert Ley

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He headed the German Labour Front from 1933 to 1945.

As Nazi Germany collapsed in early 1945, Ley was among the government figures who remained fanatically loyal to Hitler.He last saw Hitler on 20 April 1945, Hitler’s birthday, in the Führerbunker in central Berlin. The next day he left for southern Bavaria, in the expectation that Hitler would make his last stand in the “National Redoubt” in the alpine areas. When Hitler refused to leave Berlin, Ley was effectively unemployed. On 16 May he was captured by American paratroopers of the 101st Airborne Division in a shoemaker’s house in the village of Schleching. Ley told them he was “Dr. Ernst Distelmeyer,” but he was identified by Franz Xaver Schwarz, the treasurer of the Nazi Party and a long-time enemy.

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At the Nuremberg Trials, Ley was indicted under Count One (“The Common Plan or Conspiracy to wage an aggressive war in violation of international law or treaties”), Count Three (War Crimes, including among other things “mistreatment of prisoners of war or civilian populations”) and Count Four (“Crimes Against Humanity – murder, extermination, enslavement of civilian populations; persecution on the basis of racial, religions or political grounds”). Ley was apparently indignant at being regarded as a war criminal, telling the American psychiatrist Douglas Kelley and psychologist Gustave Gilbert who had seen and tested him in prison: “Stand us against a wall and shoot us, well and good, you are victors. But why should I be brought before a Tribunal like a c-c-c- … I can’t even get the word out!”

On 24 October, three days after receiving the indictment, Ley strangled himself in his prison cell using a noose made by tearing a towel into strips, fastened to the toilet pipe in his cell.

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Franz Friedrich Böhme

Franz Böhme

An Austrian general in the Wehrmacht during World War II, serving as Commander of the XVIII Mountain Corps, Hitler’s ‘Plenipotentiary Commanding General’ in the Balkans, and commander-in-chief in German-occupied Norway during World War II. Böhme stood trial in Nuremberg in the Hostages Trial for having massacred thousands of Serbian civilians.

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After being captured in Norway, he was brought before the Hostages Trial, a division of the Subsequent Nuremberg Trials, and charged with war crimes committed in Serbia during his control of the region in 1941. He had upped the ante of retaliatory strikes against Serbs, killing a hundred Serbs for every German killed, and fifty for every German wounded; this resulted in the massacre of thousands of civilians. When his extradition to Yugoslavia seemed imminent, Böhme committed suicide by jumping from the 4th story of the prison in which he was being held. His body was interred at St. Leonhard-Friedhof in Graz.

Emil Haussmann

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A  German SS-Sturmbannführer, in Einsatzkommando 12 of Einsatzgruppe D, which perpetrated the Holocaust in occupied Ukraine. Haussmann was accused in 1947 at the Einsatzgruppen Trial.43043

Haussmann took part in Einsatzkommando 12 during the invasion of the Soviet Union. In 1947 he was one of 24 defendants at the Einsatzgruppen Trial. On 29 July 1947, he received the indictment along with his co-defendants: (1) crimes against humanity, (2) war crimes, and (3) membership in a criminal organization. Two days later, before the arraignment, Haussmann committed suicide in his cell and was removed from the process.Thus, he was the only defendant at the Einsatzgruppen trial who escaped a sentence.

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Albert Speer:the Liar who was believed.

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Albert Speer must have been one of the biggest cowards of the Third Reich. He refused to take responsibility for his actions and kept claiming he wasn’t aware of the Holocaust although he was instrumental in getting the concentration camps build, and he kept the war machine going.

Albert Speer is said to have prolonged the war for at least a year, with the consequent death of hundreds of thousands and widespread ruin. It also gave the Nazis more time to pursue their mass murder of Jews, Russians, Gypsies and others deemed not fit to live.

It was Speer who fueled Hitler’s delusional plans to turn Berlin in to the Capital of the world and rename it Germania.

 

He claimed to have been unaware of the atrocities committed by the Nazi regime. However, he used slave laborers from the occupied territories and concentration camps in the armament factories, the conditions were inhumane, brutal, and thousands perished.

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Aside from this, there is ample evidence that Speer oversaw the eviction of Jewish residents in preparation for building the new chancellery and also that he was present for a speech by Heinrich Himmler in 1943 in which Himmler outlined quite clearly the Nazi’s plans for exterminating an entire people.

In January 1938, Hitler wanted a new Reich Chancellery built in time for a new year’s reception for foreign diplomats the following January. Speer broke ground in April and finished the project, furnishings and all, two days early.To accomplish this, he had up to 8,000 workers on site at a time in two shifts.

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At Dora, where prisoners worked on German rockets in inhuman conditions, one doctor described the scene as like Dante’s Inferno. The local crematoria could not cope with the number of bodies and instead corpses were burnt in the open. At Auschwitz, Speer oversaw a significant expansion of the camp in 1942, to include 300 more huts, crematoria, morgues and “disinfestation facilities”.

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The building project at the camp was dubbed “Professor Speer’s Special Programme” by the SS.The closeness of Speer to Hitler also raises significant doubts about his claim to have had only “vague sentiment” of the real purpose of the concentration camps. Speer, because of his straightforward manner, had been welcomed into Hitler’s inner circle.

They dined and watched films together, Speer’s family visited Hitler at his mountain home and for many years nobody had the ear of the leader more than the young architect. Hitler admired the intelligent, artistic Speer, while Speer worshipped the charismatic leader.

Hitler’s willingness to give Speer responsibility for huge areas of industrial production and military armament – ranging from mining and steel-making to developing new tanks and submarines, illustrates his trust. The men, both socially isolated and loners, appear to have had a genuine friendship – or as much of one as was possible with Hitler. In the last days of the regime, Speer even travelled to Hitler’s bunker to pledge his loyalty to the Fuhrer knowing he was planning his suicide.

After Hitler’s death, Speer offered his services to the so-called Flensburg Government, headed by Hitler’s successor, Karl Dönitz, and took a significant role in that short-lived regime.

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https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/05/23/the-flensburg-government/

On May 15, an allied delegation arrived and asked Speer if he would be willing to provide information on the effects of the air war. Speer agreed, and over the next several days, provided information on a broad range of subjects. On May 23, two weeks after the surrender of German forces, British troops arrested the members of the Flensburg Government and brought Nazi Germany to a formal end.

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Speer became known after the war as the ‘Good’Nazi. At the Nuremburg war crimes trial, he accepted what he called “overall responsibility” for his role in the government, but deliberately distanced himself from Hitler and his psychopathic monsters.

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On 1 October 1946, he was sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment. While three of the eight judges (two Soviet and one American) initially advocated the death penalty for Speer, the other judges did not, and a compromise sentence was reached after two days discussion and some rather bitter “horse-trading”.

As General Building Inspector, Speer was responsible for the Central Department for Resettlement. From 1939 onward, the Department used the Nuremberg Laws to evict Jewish tenants of non-Jewish landlords in Berlin, to make way for non-Jewish tenants displaced by redevelopment or bombing.Eventually, 75,000 Jews were displaced by these measures.Speer was aware of these activities, and inquired as to their progress. At least one original memo from Speer so inquiring still exists

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12 January 1893-A dark day in History.

 

To be honest I was struggling to find a suitable  title for this piece, but effectively in a bizarre way, 12 January 1893 did have consequences for  the lives of millions just before and during World War 2.

There is no science behind this it’s just a historical observation of a bizarre and even eerie coincidence which changed the future for many. The 12th of January 1893 is the birthday of 2 leading architects and executors of the ‘final solution’.

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Herman Göring was born on 12 January 1893 at the Marienbad Sanatorium in Rosenheim, Bavaria. His father, Heinrich Ernst Göring (31 October 1839 – 7 December 1913), a former cavalry officer, had been the first Governor-General of the German protectorate of South-West Africa, (modern-day Namibia)

 

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On October 18, 1936 Göring became Commissioner for the Four-Year Plan. This appointment, as well as that of Commissar for Raw Materials and Foreign Currency, gives Göring a great deal of influence over the German economy. Between 1937 and 1941, Göring exercises nearly absolute power over the country’s economy.

On 31 July 1941 Hermann Göring gave written authorization to SS-Obergruppenführer (Senior Group Leader) Reinhard Heydrich, Chief of the Reich Main Security Office (RSHA), to prepare and submit a plan for a “total solution of the Jewish question” in territories under German control and to coordinate the participation of all involved government organisations.

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The resulting Generalplan Ost (General Plan for the East) called for deporting the population of occupied Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union to Siberia, for use as slave labour or to be murdered. The minutes of the Wannsee Conference estimated the Jewish population of the Soviet Union to be five million, with another three million in Ukraine.

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Alfred Rosenberg was born on 12 January 1893 in Reval in the Russian Empire (today known as Tallinn, the capital of modern Estonia) to a family of Baltic Germans: his father, Waldemar Wilhelm Rosenberg,was a wealthy merchant from Latvia, his mother, Elfriede (née Siré), was from Estonia.

 

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As the Nazi Party’s chief racial theorist, Rosenberg oversaw the construction of a human racial “ladder” that justified Hitler’s racial and ethnic policies. Rosenberg built on the works of Arthur de Gobineau, Houston Stewart Chamberlain and Madison Grant, as well as on the beliefs of Hitler. He placed Blacks and Jews at the very bottom of the ladder, while at the very top stood the white “Aryan” race. Rosenberg promoted the Nordic theory which regarded Nordics as the “master race”,superior to all others, including to other Aryans (Indo-Europeans).

https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/04/24/forgotten-history-alfred-rosenberg/

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And if Göring wouldn’t have committed suicide the day before his execution, both men would have died on 16 October 1946. The day they were sentenced to death, at the Nuremberg Trials.

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https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/09/30/the-nurnbergnuremberg-sentences/

It might sound like a cliché but a day really can make a difference. If these 2 men hadn’t been born who knows what could have happened.

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Nuremberg Trials

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Today marks the 72nd anniversary of the trials against 24 Nazi war criminals start at the Palace of Justice at Nuremberg.

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Held for the purpose of bringing Nazi war criminals to justice, the Nuremberg trials were a series of 13 trials carried out in Nuremberg, Germany, between 1945 and 1949. The defendants, who included Nazi Party officials and high-ranking military officers along with German industrialists, lawyers and doctors, were indicted on such charges as crimes against peace and crimes against humanity. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler (1889-1945) committed suicide and was never brought to trial. Although the legal justifications for the trials and their procedural innovations were controversial at the time, the Nuremberg trials are now regarded as a milestone toward the establishment of a permanent international court, and an important precedent for dealing with later instances of genocide and other crimes against humanity.

The best-known of the Nuremberg trials was the Trial of Major War Criminals, held from November 20, 1945, to October 1, 1946. The format of the trial was a mix of legal traditions: There were prosecutors and defense attorneys according to British and American law, but the decisions and sentences were imposed by a tribunal (panel of judges) rather than a single judge and a jury. The chief American prosecutor was Robert H. Jackson (1892-1954), an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Each of the four Allied powers supplied two judges–a main judge and an alternate.

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Rather then going into the details of the trials I will put pictures of the trials below. The arrogant faces of some of the defendants, especially Goering’s, never ceases to amaze me.

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The Judges bench.

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Defendant Julius Streicher, Editor-in-Chief of the venomous antisemitic paper, Der Sturmer, takes the stand during the Nuremberg Trials.

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British Judge Lawrence and American Justice Francis Biddle confer at the opening of the War Crimes Trial in Nuremberg, Germany on November 20,1945. Four Allied nations–the United States, Great Britain, France and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics–worked together to bring officials of the Third Reich to trial in an international courtroom.

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Defendants Rudolf Hess (first row, left), Joachim von Ribbentrop (first row, right), Karl Doentiz (second row, left), Erich Raeder (second row, middle), and Balder von Schirach (second row, right) sit in the dock during the Nuremberg Trials, 1945-46.

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SS General Oswald Pohl gives testimony at the Nuremberg trials. One of the most important and illustrative cases in Nuremberg, was the trial of Oswald Pohl, who headed the wartime SS organization wide (WVHA), in charge of the concentration camps

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Hermann Goering has supper during the trials

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Baldur von Schirach takes the stand at the Nuremberg Trials

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The strange case of Douglas Kelley, Nuremberg Trials Psychiatrist

Lt. Colonel Douglas McGlashan Kelley (11 August 1912 – January 1, 1958) was a United States Army Military Intelligence Corps officer who served as chief psychiatrist at Nuremberg Prison during the Nuremberg War Trials. He was charged with ascertaining defendants’ competency evaluations before standing trial.

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Kelley was born in Truckee, California. He graduated from University of California at Berkeley and received his medical degree from the School of Medicine in San Francisco. He continued his studies at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, earning a Doctor of Medical Science in 1941.

In 1942 he was called to duty in the United States Army Medical Corps as chief psychiatrist for the 30th General Hospital in the European Theatre. Along with psychologist Gustave Gilbert he administered the Rorschach inkblot test to the 22 defendants in the Nazi leadership group prior to the first Nuremberg trials.

Kelley authored two books on the subject: Twenty-two Cells in Nuremberg and The Case of Rudolph Hess.

rudolf_hessDouglas Kelley wrote that one of the things that surprised him most about former Deputy Fuhrer Rudolf Hess was his absolute naivete.

By the time the psychiatrist examined him, he had been in custody for about four years following his attempt to get the British to join the Germans in fighting the Soviet Union. He seemed earnestly shocked that he was taken prisoner and revealed that he was absolutely convinced that he was slowly being poisoned. So Hess began saving food, medicine . . . anything that he was offered, wrapping samples in little brown packages, sealing them with wax, and stockpiling them for later analysis.

When first taken captive, he refused all food. After holding out for a whole day, though, he gave in and accepted some milk. Already suspicious, he would only eat with those who were holding him, but when he got a massive headache afterward, he wrote that it was then that he knew he was being poisoned.

He also wrote that his captors were apparently disappointed when he answered their questions, so he started pretending simply not to remember. He did it so much that eventually, he says, the amnesia was real, and most likely helped along by what he called the “brain poison.”

His certainty that he was being poisoned increased as his captivity dragged on. He thought that there were bones and splinters in his food and powders in his laundry to cause rashes. He claimed that the skin on the inside of his mouth was being worn away and claimed that his stomach pains were so bad that he needed to scrape and eat lime from the walls of his cell relieve the pain. Brain poison was destroying his memory more and more, and kept on believing it even though a Swiss messenger tested his food and told him that there was nothing wrong with it.

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When Hermann Goering was taken into custody, what he brought with him alone spoke volumes about his self-importance. There were 12 monogrammed suitcases, jewel-studded medals, the equivalent of about $1 million in cash, several cigar cutters, and a stash of watches and cigarette cases. Along with potassium cyanide capsules sewn into his clothes and stashed in a can of coffee, there was also a suitcase filled with enough paracodeine for a small country.

The case was filled with somewhere around 20,000 capsules, and it’s thought that he had gone directly to Germany’s manufacturers for his stash. That wasn’t all of it, either—he admitted that he had already flushed a large amount of pills before his capture, as he’d thought that it would have been unseemly to have been captured with as many pills as he’d had.

Originally, he claimed that they were part of a doctor’s prescription that he was taking for a heart condition, insisting that he was required to take 40 pills a day. Not surprisingly, they didn’t believe him and had the pills tested. The painkiller, related to morphine and opium, was found to work along the same lines as codeine, but with a stronger sedative action.They started weaning him off the pills immediately, dropping his daily dose to first 38 pills, then to 18. At that point, medical staff were advised not to reduce the dose any further, since they weren’t sure what would happen to him if he was taken off the drugs completely. He was still going through withdrawals by the time Kelley took over his treatment.

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Part of establishing whether or not the Nazis were capable of standing trial was the administration of an IQ test. The Wechsler-Bellevue Intelligence Test was adapted from English and given in German, and at the time, it was one of the most widely used IQ tests available. Scores of 65 or less were classified as “defective,” between 80 and 119 as normal, and 128 and above was “very superior.” Only about 2.2 percent of the population scored in that range. Some of the questions were altered to get rid of any kind of cultural bias, and the test measured things like memory, mental calculations, picking out objects or details deleted from a picture, and even hand speed.

The average for the 21 Nazis tested was 128. (Ley was already dead by this time.) The highest score was 143, from Hjalmar Schacht, with Goering, Arthur Seyss-Inquart, Karl Donitz, Franz von Papen, Erich Raeder, Hans Frank, Hans Fritsche, and Baldur von Schirach all testing 130 or above, and with Joachim von Ribbentrop, Wilhelm Keitel, and Albert Speer all also falling into the “very superior” category.

Their reaction to IQ testing was even more fascinating, with many of them actually looking forward to the testing and most being pleased with the results. Even those like Franz von Papen, who were initially irritated with the idea that they needed to subject themselves to a test that was so far beneath them, admitted that it was one of the more enjoyable moments of their captivity.

Perhaps most bizarre was the reaction of Wilhelm Keitel (pictured above) to the test. He was very, very impressed by it, even going as far as to say that it was much better than the “silly nonsense that German psychologists resorted to.” Later, Kelley discovered that Keitel had outlawed all intelligence testing after his son had flunked out during the tests to enter officer training.

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But as the title suggest it is a strange case.Upon honorable discharge in 1946, Kelley was appointed Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine in North Carolina. In 1949 he was appointed Professor of Criminology at the University of California at Berkeley. He committed suicide in front of his wife and children on New Year’s Day 1958 by ingesting a capsule of potassium cyanide.

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He killed himself in the same way as Hermann Goering had done.

His suicide was front-page news for two days in The Chronicle. He was just 45 years old. He had attended a New Year’s Eve party the night before. “He was his usual jovial self,” one guest was quoted as saying. He had driven into San Francisco earlier in the day to pick up his father, a dentist, so they could watch the Rose Bowl on the family’s new color television. He left no note.

 

 

John C. Woods-the Nuremberg executioner

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“I hanged those ten Nazis… and I am proud of it… I wasn’t nervous…. A fellow can’t afford to have nerves in this business…. I want to put in a good word for those G.I.s who helped me… they all did swell…. I am trying to get them a promotion…. The way I look at this hanging job, somebody has to do it. I got into it kind of by accident, years ago in the States.”

I suppose it is understandable that he was proud of doing his job ridding the planet of some of worlds most evil and vile people. However it begs the question though how he mentally coped with the killing. Even though I believe that when forced to we are all able to kill, we are just like any other animal when it comes to that. When in danger of our own life our primeval instincts will kick in, but killing someone who doesn’t pose a threat to you is another issue. It takes a certain kind of person.

John C. Woods (June 5, 1911 – July 21, 1950) was a United States Army master sergeant who, with Joseph Malta, carried out the Nuremberg executions of ten former top leaders of the Third Reich on October 16, 1946, after they were sentenced to death at the Nuremberg Trials. Time magazine credited him with 347 executions to that date during a 15-year career.According to recent research, a number of 60 to 70 over a period of two years is more credible.

Born in Wichita, Kansas, Woods joined the US Navy on December 3, 1929, and went absent without leave within months. He was convicted at a general court martial and subsequently examined by a psychiatric board on April 23, 1930. He was diagnosed with “Constitutional Psychopathic Inferiority without Psychosis”, was found “poor service material” and discharged.Before being inducted into the United States Army in August 1943, Woods was intermittently employed in construction as a laborer, and was working part-time at a feed-store in Eureka, Kansas, when he was registered for Selective Service in 1940. He was married to a nurse, Hazel Woods, but had no children.

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Before D-Day, American military executions by hanging in the European Theater of Operations occurred in England only and were performed by the civilian executioner Thomas Pierrepoint with assistance by Albert Pierrepoint and other British personnel.

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When in autumn of 1944 military executions by hanging were scheduled in France, the Army looked for a volunteer enlisted hangman and found Woods, who falsely claimed previous experience as assistant hangman in two cases in Texas and two in Oklahoma – there is no evidence that the U.S. Army made any attempt to verify Woods’ claims. In fact, Woods had no documented pre-war experience as a hangman. Woods at that time was a private and a member of the 37th Engineer Combat Battalion. He was promoted to master sergeant and transferred to Paris Disciplinary Training Center.Woods performed as the primary executioner in the hangings of 34 American soldiers at various locations in France over 1944–1945, and assisted in at least three others. U.S. Army reports suggest that Woods participated in at least 11 bungled hangings of US soldiers between 1944 and 1946.

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The Nuremberg executions took place on October 16, 1946, shortly after the conclusion of the Nuremberg Trials. Ten prominent members of the political and military leadership of Nazi Germany were executed by hanging: Hans Frank, Wilhelm Frick, Alfred Jodl, Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Wilhelm Keitel, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Alfred Rosenberg, Fritz Sauckel, Arthur Seyss-Inquart, and Julius Streicher.

While serving with the 7th Engineer Brigade in Eniwetok, Marshall Islands, on July 21, 1950, Woods was accidentally electrocuted while attempting to repair an engineer lighting set.He is buried in Toronto Township Cemetery, Toronto, Kansas.

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The Nürnberg(Nuremberg) Sentences

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Today marks the 74th anniversary of the Nürnberg Trials sentencing. Three of the defendants were acquitted: Hjalmar Schacht, Franz von Papen, and Hans Fritzsche. Four were sentenced to terms of imprisonment ranging from 10 to 20 years: Karl Dönitz, Baldur von Schirach, Albert Speer, and Konstantin von Neurath. Three were sentenced to life imprisonment: Rudolf Hess, Walther Funk, and Erich Raeder. Twelve of the defendants were sentenced to death by hanging. Ten of them—Hans Frank, Wilhelm Frick, Julius Streicher, Alfred Rosenberg, Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Fritz Sauckel, Alfred Jodl, Wilhelm Keitel, and Arthur Seyss-Inquart—were hanged on October 16, 1946. Hermann Goering managed to take a cyanide capsule hours before the execution.

Below are just some of them.

Martin Bormann: Penalty Death

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Successor to Hess as Nazi Party Secretary. (Tried in absentia, and sentenced to hang.  DNA testing conducted in 1998 on human remains found in Berlin in 1972 showed that Bormann had committed suicide in 1945 by taking cyanide.)

 

 

Karl Dönitz:Penalty 10 Years

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Leader of the Kriegsmarine from 1943, succeeded Raeder. Initiator of the U-boat campaign. Became President of Germany following Hitler’s death.In evidence presented at the trial of Karl Dönitz on his orders to the U-boat fleet to breach the London Rules, Admiral Chester Nimitz stated that unrestricted submarine warfare was carried on in the Pacific Ocean by the United States from the first day that nation entered the war. Dönitz was found guilty of breaching the 1936 Second London Naval Treaty, but his sentence was not assessed on the ground of his breaches of the international law of submarine warfare.

Hans Frank:Penalty Death

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Reich Law Leader 1933–1945 and Governor-General of the General Government in occupied Poland 1939–1945. Expressed repentance.He smiled politely, ‘Death by hanging,’ he said softly, nodding his head in acquiescence. ‘I deserved it and I expected it, as I’ve always told you. I am glad that I have had the chance to defend myself and to think things over in the last few months.

 

 

 

 

Wilhelm Frick:Penalty Death

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Hitler’s Minister of the Interior 1933–1943 and ReichProtector of Bohemia-Moravia 1943–1945. Authored the Nuremberg Race Laws.

 

 

Hans Fritzsche: Acquitted

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Popular radio commentator, and head of the news division of the Nazi Propaganda Ministry. Tried in place of Joseph Goebbels.

 

 

Walther Funk: Penalty Life imprisonment.

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Hitler’s Minister of Economics. Succeeded Schacht as head of the Reichsbank. Released due to ill health on 16 May 1957. Died 31 May 1960.

 

 

Hermann Göring:Penalty Death

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Goering came down first and strode into his cell, his face pale and frozen, his eyes popping. ‘Death!’ he said as he dropped on the cot and reached for a book. His hands were trembling in spite of his attempt to be nonchalant. His eyes were moist and he was panting, fighting back an emotional breakdown. He asked me in an unsteady voice to leave him alone for a while.

When Goering collected himself enough to talk, he said that he had naturally expected the death penalty, and was glad that he had not gotten a life sentence, because those who are sentenced to life imprisonment never become martyrs. But there wasn’t any of the old confident bravado in his voice. Goering seems to realize, at last, that there is nothing funny about death, when you’re the one who is going to die.Committed suicide the night before his execution.

Rudolf Hess:Penalty Life imprisonment.

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Hess strutted in, laughing nervously, and said that he had not even been listening, so he did not know what the sentence was and what was more, he didn’t care. As the guard unlocked his handcuffs, he asked why he had been handcuffed and Goering had not. He was told it was probably an oversight with the first prisoner.Hitler’s Deputy Führer until he flew to Scotland in 1941 in attempt to broker peace with Great Britain. After trial, committed to Spandau Prison; died in 1987.

Alfred Jodl:Penalty Death.

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Wehrmacht Generaloberst, Keitel’s subordinate and Chief of the OKW’s Operations Division 1938–1945. Subsequently exonerated by German court in 1953, though the exoneration was later overturned, largely as a result of pressure by American officials. “Death – by hanging! – that, at least, I did not deserve. The death part – all right, somebody has to stand for the responsibility. But that -‘ His mouth quivered and his voice choked for the first time. ‘That I did not deserve.”

 

Ernst Kaltenbrunner:Penalty Death.

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Highest surviving SS-leader. Chief of RSHA 1943–45, the Nazi organ made up of the intelligence service, Secret State Police and Criminal Police. Also had overall command over the Einsatzgruppen and several concentration camps.

 

Wilhelm Keitel:Penalty Death.

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Head of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) 1938–1945.”Death-by hanging!” he announced his voice hoarse with intense shame. “That, at least, I thought I would be spared.”

 

 

Albert Speer:Penalty 20 Years.

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Hitler’s favorite architect and close friend, and Minister of Armaments from 1942. In this capacity, he was ultimately responsible for the use of slave laborers from the occupied territories in armaments production. Expressed repentance.Speer laughed nervously. ‘Twenty years. Well; that’s fair enough. They couldn’t have given me a lighter sentence, considering the facts, and I can’t complain. I said the sentences must be severe, and I admitted my share of the guilt, so it would be ridiculous if I complained about the punishment.’ ”

Joachim von Ribbentrop:Penalty Death.

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Ambassador-Plenipotentiary 1935–1936. Ambassador to the United Kingdom 1936–1938. Nazi Minister of Foreign Affairs 1938–1945.Ribbentrop wandered in, aghast, and started to walk around the cell in a daze, whispering, ‘Death!-Death! Now I won’t be able to write my beautiful memoirs. Tsk! Tsk! So much hatred! Tsk! tsk!’ Then he sat down, a completely broken man, and stared into space.

 

Alfred Rosenberg:Penalty Death.

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Racial theory ideologist. Later, Minister of the Eastern Occupied Territories 1941–1945.His theories played a big part in the Nazi racial policies and were the foundation of the Wannsee conference.

 

 

Fritz Sauckel:Penalty Death

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Gauleiter of Thuringia 1927–1945. Plenipotentiary of the Nazi slave labor program 1942–1945.At the Nuremberg trials, Fritz Sauckel was accused of conspiracy to commit crimes against peace; planning, initiating and waging wars of aggression; war crimes and crimes against humanity. He defended the Arbeitseinsatz as “nothing to do with exploitation. It is an economic process for supplying labour”. He denied that it was slave labour or that it was common to deliberately work people to death (extermination by labour) or to mistreat them.

Arthur Seyss-Inquart:Penalty Death

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Instrumental in the Anschluss and briefly Austrian Chancellor 1938. Deputy to Frank in Poland 1939–1940. Later, Reich Commissioner of the occupied Netherlands 1940–1945. Expressed repentance.During the trial, Gustave Gilbert, an American army psychologist, was allowed to examine the Nazi leaders who were tried at Nuremberg for war crimes. Among other tests, a German version of the Wechsler-Bellevue IQ test was administered. Arthur Seyss-Inquart scored 141, the second highest among the defendants, behind Hjalmar Schacht.

Dr. Hjalmar Schacht:Acquitted.

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Prominent banker and economist. Pre-war president of the Reichsbank 1923–1930 & 1933–1938 and Economics Minister 1934–1937. Admitted to violating the Treaty of Versailles.

 

 

 

 

 

Julius Streicher:Penalty Death

100px-julius_streicher_72-920_cropGauleiter of Franconia 1922–1940. Publisher of the weekly newspaper, Der Stürmer

For his 25 years of speaking, writing and preaching hatred of the Jews, Streicher was widely known as ‘Jew-Baiter Number One.’ In his speeches and articles, week after week, month after month, he infected the German mind with the virus of anti-Semitism, and incited the German people to active persecution. … Streicher’s incitement to murder and extermination at the time when Jews in the East were being killed under the most horrible conditions clearly constitutes persecution on political and racial grounds in connection with war crimes, as defined by the Charter, and constitutes a crime against humanity.

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