30 Nov. 45

COL. AMEN: After you were so informed by Canaris, what else was said at this meeting?

LAHOUSEN: This request which was first put to the military Abwehr so openly and in such an undisguised form by a representative of the Armed Forces, was decidedly and indignantly rejected by all those present. I, myself, as the person most involved, since my division was expected to carry out this task, indicated flatly before all present that I had not the slightest intention of executing this order. My division and my officers are prepared to fight but they are neither a murderers' organization nor murderers.

COL. AMEN: What then did Canaris say?

LAHOUSEN: Canaris said: "Calm down. We'll have a word together later," or something to that effect.

COL. AMEN: Did you then talk it over later with Canaris?

LAHOUSEN: When the other gentlemen had left the room, I spoke with Canaris alone and he told me immediately: "It is quite obvious that this order will not only not be carried out, but it will not even be communicated to anybody else," and that, in fact, happened.

COL. AMEN: Were you subsequently questioned as to whether you had carried out this order?

LAHOUSEN: On one occasion when Canaris was reporting to Keitel, and I was present, Keitel mentioned the subject to me, and asked me what had happened or what had been done in this matter up to now. The date of this incident was recorded in my notes, on Canaris' suggestion and with his knowledge.

COL.AMEN: What reply did you make to Keitel?

LAHOUSEN: I cannot, of course, recall my precise words, but one thing is certain; I did not answer that I had no intention of carrying out this order. That I could not tell him, and did not tell him; otherwise, I would not be sitting here today. Probably, as in many similar cases, I replied that it was very difficult but everything possible would be done, or something of that sort. Naturally, I cannot recall my precise words.

COL. AMEN: Incidentally, are you the only one of this intimate Canaris group who is still alive today?

LAHOUSEN: I believe I am at least one of the very few. Possibly Pieckenbrock is still alive; perhaps Bentivegni, who, however, did not belong to the inner circle. Most of the others were liquidated as a result of the events on July 20.

COL. AMEN: I have another subject to take up now. In 1941 did you attend a conference at which General Reinecke was present?