27 Nov. 45

"On 21 May 1935 they falsely announced to the world, with intent to deceive and allay fears of aggressive intentions, that they would respect the territorial limitations of the Versailles Treaty and comply with the Locarno Pact."

As a part of their program to weaken resistance in possible enemy states, the Nazis followed a policy of making false assurances, thereby tending to create confusion and a false sense of security. Thus on the same date on which Germany renounced the armament provisions of the Versailles Treaty, Hitler announced the intent of the German Government to respect the territorial limitations of Versailles and Locarno.

I offered in evidence this morning, as Exhibit USA-38, our Document 2288-PS, the pertinent volume of the issue of the Völkischer Beobachter of 21 May 1935, containing Hitler's speech in the Reichstag on that date. In that speech he said:
"Therefore, the Government of the German Reich shall absolutely respect all other articles pertaining to the cooperation" --Zusammenleben, really meaning the living together in harmony--"of the various nations, including territorial agreements. Revisions which will be unavoidable as time goes by it will carry out by way of a friendly understanding only.

"The Government of the German Reich has the intention not to sign any treaty which it believes not to be able to fulfill. However, it will live up to every treaty signed voluntarily even if it was composed before this Government took over. Therefore, it twill in particular adhere to all the obligations under the Locarno Pact, as long as the other partners of the Pact also adhere to it."

For convenient reference, the territorial limitations in the Locarno and Versailles Treaties include the following: The Rhine Pact of Locarno, 16 October 1925, Article 1:

"The High Contracting Parties, collectively and severally, guarantee, in the manner provided in the following Articles: the maintenance of the territorial status quo, resulting from the frontiers between Germany and Belgium, and between Germany and France, and the inviolability of the said frontiers, as fixed by, or in pursuance of the Treaty of Peace, signed at Versailles, on June 28, 1919, and also the observance of the stipulations of Articles 42 and 43 of the said Treaty, concerning the demilitarized zone."

That has reference, of course, to the demilitarized zone of the Rhineland.