5 Dec. 45

Government as an excuse for intervention. On the following day, March 11, a strange scene was enacted in Bratislava, the Slovak capital. I quote from Document D-571, which is USA-112. That is the report of the British Minister in Prague to the British Government.

"Herr Bürckel, Herr Seyss-Inquart, and five German generals came at about 10 o'clock in the evening of Saturday, the 11th of March, into a Cabinet meeting in progress in Bratislava and told the Slovak Government that they should proclaim the independence of Slovakia. When M. Sidor, the Prime Minister, showed hesitation, Herr Bürckel took him on one side and explained that Herr Hitler had decided to settle the question of Czechoslovakia definitely. Slovakia ought, therefore, to proclaim her independence, because Herr Hitler would otherwise disinterest himself in her fate. M. Sidor thanked Herr Bürckel for this information, but said that he must discuss the situation with the Government at Prague."
A very strange situation that he should have to discuss such a matter with his own Government, before obeying instructions of Herr Hitler delivered by five German generals and Herr Bürckel and Herr Seyss-Inquart.

Events went on moving rapidly, but Durcansky, one of the dismissed ministers, escaped with Nazi assistance to Vienna, where the facilities of the German broadcasting station were placed at his disposal. Arms and ammunition were brought from German offices in Engerau across the Danube into Slovakia, where they were used by the FS and the Hlinka Guards to create incidents and disorder of the type required by the Nazis as an excuse for military action. The German press and radio launched a violent campaign against the Czechoslovak Government; and, significantly, an invitation from Berlin was delivered in Bratislava. Tiso, the dismissed Prime Minister, was summoned by Hitler to an audience in the German capital. A plane was awaiting him in Vienna.

At this point, in the second week of March 1939, preparations for what the Nazi leaders like to call the liquidation of Czechoslovakia were progressing with what to them must have been very satisfying smoothness. The military, diplomatic, and propaganda machinery of the Nazi conspirators was moving in close coordination. All during the process of the Fall Grün (or Case Green) of the preceding summer, the Nazi conspirators had invited Hungary to participate in this new attack. Admiral Horthy, the Hungarian Regent, was again greatly flattered by this invitation.

I offer in evidence Document 2816-PS as Exhibit USA-115. This is a letter the distinguished Admiral of Hungary, a country which,