1 Dec. 45

order in question had, of course, a bearing on an essential point of international law, and the Ausland section of the Abwehr department — or rather the "Sachbearbeiter" (expert) as he was called — was naturally concerned with it. As a matter of fact, my department was directly concerned with these things for reasons which I have already explained, because it might turn out that persons for whom I was responsible might be directly affected.

DR. NELTE: Did the department which dealt with international law in the Amt Ausland Abwehr ever put its official attitude in writing?

LAHOUSEN: As I pointed out yesterday, I wrote a contribution on the subject, from the point of view of my section, which was transmitted to Canaris and was to be part of the long document. I only learned what use was made of it from what Bürckner said at the time, and which was that his department passed the thing on in this manner, either in writing or verbally, as a protest or counter remonstrance, at any rate pointing out the dangers. This happened a second time, and again I cannot say in what form, whether verbally or in writing or vice versa — the first time in writing and then verbally — after executions had already taken place, and because I had again started to make myself heard because of the executions that had already taken place. That was the logical development.

DR. NELTE: You also said something yesterday about putting a distinguishing mark on Russian prisoners by branding. Did it become known to you that such a scheme, as brought out in this question, was cancelled by a telephoned order from the Chief of the OKW, who had gone to the Führer's headquarters for this purpose, and that it was only because of a regrettable, a terrible misunderstanding, that a few copies of this order were issued.

LAHOUSEN: No, I do not know about this, because, generally speaking, I only heard of the things which happened in the Amt Ausland Abwehr, that is, from Canaris' section downwards, if I was directly concerned with them. What happened on the higher levels that is, from Canaris upwards, was and could only be known to me if I was in some way connected with it.

DR. NELTE;: You yourself did not see the order?

LAHOUSEN: Which order are you referring to?

DR. NELTE: The one concerning the branding of Russian prisoners.

LAHOUSEN: No. As in the case of the Commando Order and others, I attended only the very lively discussion of this question, and with regard to the branding of Russian prisoners I remember Canaris mentioning that a doctor had furnished a written report on how this could be done most efficiently.