|Source: Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression, Vol. II. USGPO,
Washington, 1946, pp. 248-302
[Note: The characters in brackets, eg,
(2233-N-PS) refer to the official document numbers included in the series Nazi Conspiracy
and Aggression. A listing of legal references and documents relating to the Gestapo
and SD appears on pages 302-316. .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]
The Geheime Staatspolizei
and Sicherheitsdienst (SD)
Part I, Part II,
Part IV, Part V
Punishment of Relatives of Accused
Murder of Prisoners
Seizure and Spoliation of Private and Public Property
Third Degree Interrogations
Crimes of the SD and Gestapo Against Humanity
Gestapo and SD Primary Agencies for
the Persecution of the Jews
Gestapo and SD Were Primary Agencies for the Persecution of the
(9) The GESTAPO and SD executed or confined persons in
concentration camps for crimes allegedly committed by their relatives.
On 19 July 1944, the Commander of the SIPO and SD for the District Radom published an
order transmitted through the Higher SS and Police Leaders to the effect that in all cases
of assassination or attempted assassination of Germans, or where saboteurs had destroyed
vital installations, not only the guilty person but also all his (or her) male relatives
should be shot and the female relatives over 16 years of age put into a concentration
In the summer of 1944, the Einsatzkommando of the SIPO and SD at Luxembourg
caused persons to be confined at Sachsenhausen concentration camp because they were
relatives of deserters and were, therefore," expected to endanger the interest of the
German Reich if allowed to go free."( L-21 5)
(10) The GESTAPO and SD were instructcd to murder prisoners in
the SIPO and SD prisons to prevent their release by the Allied armies.
On 21 July 1944, the Kommandeur of the SIPO and SD for the District Radom
forwarded an order of the Befehlshaber of the SIPO and SD to the effect that it was
essential that the number of inmates of the SIPO and SD prisons be kept as low as
possible. Inmates were to be subjected only to short formal interrogations and then to be
sent by the quickest route to concentra-ion camps. Preparations were to be made for total
clearance of the prisons should the situation at the front necessitate such action. In the
case of sudden emergency precluding the evacuation of the prisoners, they were to be shot
and their bodies buried or otherwise disposed of, the buildings to be dynamited, and so
forth. In similar circumstances, the Jews who were still employed in the armament
industries or in other work were to be dealt with in the same way. The liberation of
prisoners or Jews by the enemy was to be avoided at all costs. (L-53)
(11) The GESTAPO and the SD participated in the seizure and
spoliation of public and private property.
In connection with the program for the mass extermination of Jews and Communist
functionaries, the GESTAPO and the SD seized all personal effects of the persons executed
or murdered. On the eastern front the victims were required not only to give up all their
personal possessions, but even to remove their outer garments prior to being murdered. (2620-PS)
In connection with the program of confiscation of scientific, religious, and art
archives and objects, an agreement was entered into between Rosenberg and Heydrich, under
which the SD and Rosenberg were to cooperate closely in the confiscation of public and
private collections. (071-PS)
(12) The GESTAPO and SD conducted third degree
On 26 October 1939 an order to all GESTAPO offices from the RSHA signed Mueller,
"by order," in referring to execution of protective custody during the war,
stated in part:
"In certain cases, the Reichsfuehrer SS and Chief of the German Police will order
flogging in addition to detention in a concentration camp. Orders of this kind will, in
the future, also be transmitted to the State Police District Office concerned. In this
case, too, there is no objection to spreading the rumour of this increased punishment. * *
* " (1531-PS)
On 12 June 1942 the Chief of the Security Police and SD, through Mueller, published an
order authorizing the use of third degree methods in interrogating where preliminary
investigation indicates that the prisoner could give information on important facts such
as subversive activities, but not to extort confessions of the prisoner's own crimes. The
order stated in part :
"* * * 2. Third degree may, under this supposition, only be employed against
Communists, Marxists, Jehovah's Witnesses, saboteurs, terrorists, members of resistance
movements, parachute agents, anti-social elements, Polish or Soviet-Russian loafers or
tramps. In all other cases, my permission must first be obtained.
"* * * 4. Third degree can, according to the circum-stances, consist amongst other
very simple diet (bread and water)
deprivation of sleep
also in flogging (for more than 29 strokes a doctor must be consulted) ." (1531-PS)
On 24 February 1944 the Kommandeur of the SIPO and SD for the district Radom,
"in view of the variety of methods used to date in third-degree interrogations and in
order to avoid excesses," published an order issued by tlne BdS Cracow based on
regulations in force for the Reich which followed closely the limitations laid down in the
above decree of 12 June 1942. (L-89)
G. Crimes of the GESTAPO and SD Against
(1) The GESTAPO and the SD were primary agencies for
the persecution of the Jews.
The persecution of the Jews under the Nazi regime is a story of increasingly severe
treatment, beginning with restrictions, then seizure and spoliation of property,
commitment to concentration camps, deportation, slave labor, and finally mass murder. The
responsibility of the GESTAPO and the SD for the mass extermination program carried out by
the Einsatz Groups of the SIPO and SD and in the annihilation camps to which
Jews were sent by the SIPO and SD has already been considered. In this subdivision, the
place of the GESTAPO and SD in the development of this persecution will be treated.
Section B of the SD dealt with problems of nationality, including minorities, race and
national health, immigration, and resettlement. Section B4 of the GESTAPO, headed by
Eichmann, dealt with Jewish affairs, including matters of evacuation, means of suppressing
enemies of the people and State, and dispossession of rights of German citizenship. One of
the functions of the SD was to furnish information concerning the Jews to the GESTAPO. One
of the functions of the GESTAPO was to carry out the Nazi program of persecution of the
Jews. (L-185; L-219.)
The GESTAPO was charged with the enforcement of discriminatory laws, such as those
preventing Jews from engaging in business, restricting their right to travel, and
prohibiting them from associating with gentiles. Violations of such restrictions resulted
in protective custody and confinement in concentration camps by the GESTAPO. (L-217;
The Chief of the Security Police and SD ordered the GESTAPO and the SD to supervise the
anti-Jewish pogrom staged in November 1938 following the von Rath incident in Paris. As
many Jews were to be arrested in all districts as the available jail space would hold.
Well-to-do Jews were to be singled out for arrest, and primarily only healthy male adults
of not too advanced age. Immediately after completion of the arrests, the competent
concentration camp was to be notified in order to provide for speediest transfer of Jews
to the camps. (3051-PS)
On 11 November 1938 Heydrich reported to Goering by secret express letter on the
results of the action as reported by the GESTAPO. The report stated in part:
"* * * The extent of the destruction of Jewish shops and houses cannot yet be
verified by figures. The figures given in the reports: 815 shops destroyed, 171 dwelling
houses set on fire or destroyed, only indicate a fraction of the actual damage caused, as
far as arson is concerned. Due to the urgency of the reporting, the reports received to
date are entirely limited to general statements such as 'numerous' or 'most shops
destroyed. ' Therefore the figures given must have been exceeded considerably.
"191 synagogues were set on fire, and another 76 completely destroyed. In addition
11 parish halls, [Gemeindehauser] cemetery chapels and similar buildings were set on fire
and 3 more completely destroyed.
"20,000 Jews were arrested, also 7 Aryans and 3 foreigners. The latter were
arrested for their own safety.
"36 deaths were reported and those seriously injured were also numbered at 36.
Those killed and injured are Jews. One Jew is still missing. The Jews killed include one
Polish national, and those injured include 2 Poles." (3058-PS)
On 31 July 1941 Goering sent the following order to the Chief of the Security Police
and SD, Heydrich :
"Complementing the task that was assigned to you on 24 January 1939, which dealt
with arriving at a solution of the Jewish problem through furtherance of emigration and
evacuation as advantageous as possible, I hereby charge you with making all necessary
preparations in regard to organizational and financial matters for bringing about a
complete solution of the Jewish question in the German sphere of influence in
In February or March 1943, according to Gottfried Boley, Ministerialrat in the
Reich Chancery, a conference on the solution of the Jewish problem, attended by
representatives of the ministries, was called by Kaltenbrunner as Chief of the Security
Police and SD. Boley states:
"The meeting was presided over by Eichmann who had charge of Jewish problems in
the GESTAPO. In his opening remarks Eichmann referred to former conferences that had taken
place in the office of the Chief of the Security Police and SD, and that on this occasion
he wished to discuss the matter in a more basic manner. He stated that the Jewish question
had to be solved in a quick and proper way. Representatives of the Chief of the Security
Police and SD who attended the conference made it clear to those present that the
remaining Jews had to be sent forcibly to concentration camps or be sterilized. Those
present at the conference must have carried away the impression that the objectives were
the extermination of the Jewish people." (2645-PS)
The deportation of Jews into concentration camps was part of the program for slave
labor. Jews not fit for work were screened out at extermination centers, such as
Auschwitz, and the remainder were taken into concentration and work camps. The orders were
issued by Himmler and passed through the Chief of the Security Police and SD,
Kaltenbrunner (formerly Heydrich) to Mueller, Chief of the GESTAPO, and then to Eichmann
for execution. (2376-PS; 1472-PS.)
In Galicia, the deportation of Jews was carried out during the period from April 1942
to June 1943. At the end of that time Galicia had been entirely cleared of Jews. In all,
434,392 Jews were deported from Galicia alone. In connection with the deportations, Jewish
property was confiscated, including furniture, clothing, money, dental fillings, gold
teeth, wedding rings, and other personal property of all kinds. The Security Police
participated in this action along with other police and SS detachments. (L-18).
In Warsaw the Security Police played a responsible role in the segregation of the Jews
and placing them in the Ghetto, in the subsequent removal of the Jews to concentration
camps, and in the final clearance of the Ghetto. The Ghetto was established in November of
1940. Over 300,000 Jews were deported from it between July and October 1942, and 6,500
more were deported in January 1943. In April and May 1943 the final clearance of the
Ghetto was accomplished under the direction of the SS and Police Leader of the Warsaw
area, and with units of the SIPO, Waffen SS, Order Police, and some military and Polish
police units. Thousands of Jews were killed in the action. About 7,000 were transported to
"T. II" where they were exterminated. The remaining 40,000 to 45,000 were placed
in concentration camps. (1061- PS)
In Denmark the Kommandeur of the SIPO and SD was ordered in September of 1943 to
arrest all Danish citizens of Jewish belief and send them to Stettin by ship and from
there to the concentration camp at Theresienstadt. In spite of the protests of the Kommandeur
of the SIPO and SD, Kaltenbrunner as Chief of the Security Police and SD gave direct
orders to carry out the anti-Jewish action. Eichmann, head of the Jewish section in the
GESTAPO, had direct charge of the clearance program. (2375-PS)
In Hungary the deportation of Jews was again carried out by Eichmann. This action took
place under direction of the GESTAPO after the German occupation of Hungary in March 1944.
About 450,000 Jews were deported from Hungary due to the pressure and direction of the
(2) The GESTAPO and the SD were primary agencies for the
persecution of the churches.
The fight against the churches was never brought out into the open by the GESTAPO and
the SD as in the case of the persecution of the Jews. The struggle was designed to weaken
the churches and to lay a foundation for the ultimate destruction of the confessional
churches after the end of the war. (1815-PS)
Section C2 of the SD dealt with education and religious life. Section Bl of the GESTAPO
dealt with political Catholicism. Section B2 with political Protestantism sects, and
Section B3 with other churches and Freemasonry. (L-1 85)
As early as 1934 the GESTAPO enforced restrictions against the churches. An order by
the State Police of Dusseldorf prohibited the churches from engaging in public activities,
especially public appearances in groups, sports, hikes, and the establishment of holiday
or outdoor camps.( R-l 45)
In 1934 the Bavarian Political Police placed three ministers in protective custody for
refusing to carry out the order of the Government to ring church bells on the occasion of
the death of Hindenburg. (1521-PS)
The GESTAPO dissolved those church organizations which it considered to have political
objectives. In 1938 the GESTAPO at Munich dissolved by order the Guild of the Virgin Mary
of the Bavarian dioceses. (1481-PS)
An insight into the hidden objectives and secret methods of the GESTAPO and the SD in
the fight against the churches is disclosed in the file of the GESTAPO regional office at
Aachen (1815-PS). On 12 May 1941 the Chief of the GESTAPO issued a directive
in which he reported that the Chief of the Security Police and SD had issued an order
under which the treatment of church politics which had theretofore been divided between
the SD and the GESTAPO was to be taken over entirely by the GESTAPO. The SD "church
specialists" were to be temporarily transferred to the same posts in the GESTAPO and
operate an intelligence service in the church political sphere there. SD files concerning
church political opposition were to be handed over to the GESTAPO, but the SD was to
retain material concerning the confessional influence on the lives of the people.
On 22 and 23 September 1941 a conference of church specialists attached to GESTAPO
regional offices was held in the lecture hall of the RSHA in Berlin. The notes on the
speeches delivered at this conference indicate that the GESTAPO considered the church as
an enemy to be attacked with determination and "true fanaticism" The immediate
objective of the GESTAPO was stated to be to insure that the Church did not win back any
lost ground. The ultimate objective was stated to be the destruction of the confessional
churches. This was to be brought about by the col-lection of material through the GESTAPO
church intelligence system to be produced at a proper time as evidence for the charge of
treasonable activities during the German fight for existence.
The executive measures to be applied by the GESTAPO were discussed. It was stated to be
impractical to deal with political offenses under normal legal procedure owing to lack of
political perception which prevailed among the legal authorities. The so-called
"agitator-Priests," therefore, had to be handled by GESTAPO measures, and when
necessary removed to a concentration camp. The following punishments were to be applied to
priests according to individual circumstances: warning, fine, forbidden to preach,
forbidden to remain in parish, forbidden all activity as a priest, short-term arrest,
protective custody. Retreats, youth and recreational camps, evening services, processions
and pilgrimages were all to be forbidden on grounds of interfering with the war effort,
blackouts, overburdened transportation, etc.
In executing this program close cooperation was required between the GESTAPO and the
SD. The study and treatment of the Church in its opposition to the Nazi state was the
responsibility of the GESTAPO. The result of this treatment of the Church in the sphere of
"religious life" remained the province of the SD. By these means the GESTAPO and
the SD carried on the struggle of the Nazi conspirators against the Church.
The evidence shows that the GESTAPO was created by Goering in Prussia in April 1933 for
the specific purpose of serving as a police agency to strike down the actual and
ideological enemies of the Nazi regime, and that henceforward the GESTAPO in Prussia and
in the other States of the Reich carried out a program of terror against all who were
thought to be dangerous to the domination of the conspirators over the people of Germany.
Its methods were utterly ruthless. It operated outside the law and sent its victims to the
concentration camps. The term "GESTAPO" became. the symbol of the Nazi regime of
force and terror.
Behind the scenes, operating secretly, the SD, through its vast network of informants,
spied upon the German people in their daily lives, on the streets, in the shops, and even
within the sanctity of the churches.
The most casual remark of a German citizen might bring him before the GESTAPO, where
his fate and freedom were decided without recourse to law. In this government, in which
the rule of law was replaced by a tyrannical rule of men, the GESTAPO was the primary
instrumentality of oppression.
The GESTAPO and the SD played an important part in almost every criminal act of the
conspiracy. The categories of these crimes, apart from the thousands of specific instances
of torture and cruelty in policing Germany for, the benefit of the conspirators, indicate
the extent of GESTAPO and SD complicity. T
he GESTAPO and SD fabricated the border incidents which Hitler used as an excuse for
Through the Einsatz Groups they murdered approximately 2,000,000 defenseless men,
women, and children.
They removed Jews, political leaders, and scientists from prisoner of war camps and
They took recaptured prisoners of war to concentration camps and murdered some of them.
The GESTAPO established and classified concentration camps and sent millions of people
into them for extermination and slave labor.
The GESTAPO cleared Europe of the Jews and was responsible for sending 4,000,000 Jews
to their deaths in annihilation camps.
The GESTAPO and SD rounded up hundreds of thousands of citizens of occupied countries
and shipped them to Germany for forced labor, and sent slave laborers to labor reformatory
camps and concentration camps for disciplining.
They executed captured commandos and paratroopers and protected civilians who lynched
They took civilians of occupied countries to Germany for secret trial and punishment.
They arrested, tried, and punished citizens of occupied territories under special
criminal procedures which did not accord them fair trials, and by summary methods.
They murdered or sent to concentration camps the relatives of persons who had allegedly
They ordered the murder of prisoners in SIPO and SD prisons to prevent their release by
the Allied armies.
They participated in the seizure and spoliation of public and private property.
They were primary agencies for the persecution of the Jews and of the churches.
In carrying out these crimes the GESTAPO operated as an organization, closely
centralized and controlled from Berlin headquarters. Reports were submitted to Berlin, and
all important decisions emanated from Berlin. The regional offices had only limited power
to commit persons to concentration camps. All cases, other than those of short duration,
had to be submitted to Berlin for approval. From 1943 to the end of the war the defendant
Kaltenbrunner was the Chief of the Security Police and SD in Berlin. The GESTAPO was
organized on a functional basis. Its principal divisions dealt with the groups and
institutions against which it committed the worst crimes-Jews, churches, communists, and
political liberals. Thus, in perpetrating these crimes, the GESTAPO acted as an entity,
each section performing its part in the general criminal enterprises ordered by Berlin. It
must be held responsible as an entity.
The SD was at all times a department of the SS. Its criminality directly concerns and
contributes to the criminality of the SS. As to the GESTAPO, it is submitted that:
1. The GESTAPO is an organization, in the sense in which that term is used in Article 9
of the Charter.
2. The defendants Goering and Kaltenbrunner committed the crimes defined in Article
6 of the Charter in their capacity as members and leaders of the GESTAPO.
3. The GESTAPO, as an organization, participated in and aided the conspiracy which
contemplated and involved the commission of the crimes defined in Article 6 of the
In 1941, on German Police Day, Heydrich, the former Chief of the Security Police and
the SD, said:
"Secret State Police, Criminal Police, and SD are still adorned with the furtive
and whispered secrecy of a political detective story. In a mixture of fear and
shuddering-and yet at home with a certain feeling of security because of their
presence,-brutality, inhumanity bordering on the sadistic, and ruthlessness are attributed
abroad to the men of this profession." (Extract from a brochure on Reinhard Heydrich,
published in December 1943.)
The evidence as it is submitted, shows that brutality, inhumanity, sadism, and
ruthlessness were characteristic of the GESTAPO and that it was and should be declared, a
criminal organization, in accordance with article 9 of the Charter.
Gestapo and SD Nuremberg Charges, Part V