The following excerpt from the report of
Einsatzgruppe "A" is extremely characteristic as evidence
". . . among our functions as the establishment of personal liaison with the commanding officer both at the front and in the rear. It must be pointed out that the relations with the army were of the best, in some cases very close, almost hearty, as, for instance, the commander of the tank group, Colonel General Hoppner" (L-180).4. The representatives of the High Command acted in all the echelons of the army as members of a criminal group.
The directives of the OKW and the General Staff, in spite of the manifest violations of international law and customs of warfare, not only did not provoke any protest on the part of the higher staff officers of the command of the various groups of the armies but were inflexibly applied and supplemented by still more cruel orders in the development of such directives.
In this connection it is characteristic to note the directive of Fieldmarshal Von Reichenau, army group commander, addressed to his soldiers: "The soldier in the eastern territories is not only a warrior skilled in the art of warfare but a bearer of a merciless national ideology." And elsewhere, calling for the extermination of the Jews. Von Reichenau wrote: "Thus the soldier must be in full cognizance of the necessity for harsh and just revenge on those sub-humans, the Jews" (USA-556).
As another example the order of Fieldmarshal Von Mannstein addressed to his soldiers can be referred to. On the basis of the "political aims of the war" the Fieldmarshal cynically appealed to his soldiers to wage the war in violation of the "recognized laws of warfare in Europe" (USA-927).
Thus, in the course of the hearing of evidence it has been proven beyond all doubt that the General Staff and the High Command of the Hitlerite Army comprised a highly dangerous criminal organization.
I consider it my duty as a Judge to draw up my dissenting opinion concerning those important questions on which I disagree with the decision adopted by the members of the Tribunal.
Soviet Member, International Military Tribunal ,
/ s / I. T. Nikitchenko
1 October 1946
Last modified: October 10, 1998