26 Nov. 45
This document also is of such great importance historically and
as bearing on the issues now presented to the Tribunal, that I feel
obliged to read most of it At the top:
"Top Secret (Geheime
Reichssache). To be transmitted by officer only
"Minutes of a conference on 23 May 1939 Place: The
Führer's study, New Reich Chancellery. Adjutant on duty
Lieutenant Colonel (G. S.) Schmundt.
"Present: The Führer, Field Marshal Göring, Grand
Admiral Raeder, Colonel General Von Brauchitsch, Colonel General
Raeder, Colonel General Milch General of Artillery) Halder (G. S.)
General Bodenschatz, Rear Admiral Schniewindt, Colonel (G. S.)
Jeschonnek, Colonel (G.S.) Warlimont, Lieutenant Colonel (G. S. )
Schmundt, Captain Engel (Army), Lieutenant Commander Albrecht,
Captain V. Below (Army).
"Subject Indoctrination on the Political Situation and
"The Führer defined as the purpose of the conference
"1. Analysis of the situation;
"2 Definition of the tasks for the Armed Forces arising from
"3.Exposition of the consequences of those tasks
"4. Ensuring the secrecy of all decisions and work resulting
from those consequences. Secrecy is the first essential for success.
"The Führer's observations are given in accordance with
their meaning. Our present situation must be considered from two
points of view: 1) The actual development of events between 1933 and
1939; 2) the permanent and unchanging situation In which Germany
"In the period 1933-39, progress was made in all fields. Our
military situation improved enormously.
"Our situation with regard to the rest of the world has
remained the same.
"Germany had dropped from the circle of Great Powers. The
balance of power had been effected without the participation of
"This equilibrium is disturbed when Germany's demands for
the necessities of life make themselves felt, And Germany re-emerges
as a Great Power. All demands are regarded as 'encroachments'. The
English are more afraid of dangers in the economic sphere than of the
simple threat of force.