20 Nov. 45

villages and hamlets, more than 6 million buildings and rendered homeless about 25 million 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 (SKL Ia No. 1601/41, dated 29 September 1941) addressed only to Staff officers, it was said:

"The Führer has decided to erase Petersburg from the face of the earth. 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, et cetera, necessary for the fleet be preserved is known to the Supreme Command of the German Armed Forces, but the basic principles of carrying out operations against 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 lives of the population and of their provisioning 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 billion 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 million books, magazines, and manuscripts (many of which were very valuable and even unique) and a large number of artistic productions and divers valuables were stolen and carried away.

Many valuable art productions were taken away from Riga.