4 Jan. 46

Poland was announced, Hitler, in discussing the possibility of war with England, said that the Dutch and Belgian air bases must be occupied by armed force. "Declarations of neutrality will be ignored." And later, in his speech to the Oberbefehlshaber in November 1939, Hitler said that they must first invade the Low Countries and "no one will question that when we have won."

Accordingly, one can well imagine that the winter of 1939 and 1940 and the early spring of 1940 was a period of very intensive planning in German military circles. The major attack in the West through the Low Countries had to be planned and the attack on Norway and Denmark had to be planned. The Defendant Jodl's diary for the period 1 February to 26 May 1940, Document 1809-PS, Exhibit Number GB-88, contains many entries reflecting the course of this planning. Some of the entries have been read into the record and others are now of interest.

The Tribunal will see from these entries which have already been read that during February and early March there was considerable doubt in German military circles as to whether the attack on Norway and Denmark should precede or follow the attack on the Low Countries and that at some points there even was doubt as to whether all these attacks were necessary from a military standpoint. But the Tribunal will not find a single entry which reflects any hesitancy from a moral angle, on the part of Jodl or any of the people he mentions, to overrun these countries.

I will make several references now to Document 1809-PS and several of the entries in it. I do not plan to quote verbatim from any one of them. The Court will note that on 1 February 1940 General Jeschonnek, the Chief of the Air Staff and a member of the group as defined in the Indictment, visited Jodl and made a suggestion that it might be wise to attack only Holland, on the ground that Holland alone would offer a tremendous improvement for Germany's aerial warfare.

On 6 February Jodl conferred with Jeschonnek, Warlimont, and Colonel Von Waldau, and what Jodl calls a "new idea" was proposed at this meeting: That the Germans should carry out only "Action H" (Holland) and the Weser Exercise (Norway and Denmark) and should guarantee Belgium's neutrality for the duration of the war.

I suppose the German Air Force may have felt that the occupation of Holland alone would give them sufficient scope for air bases for attacks on England and that if Belgium's neutrality were preserved the German bases in Holland would be immune from attack by the French and British armies in France. If, to meet this situation, the French and British should attack through Holland and Belgium, the violation of neutrality would be on the other foot. But whether or not this new idea made sense from a military angle, it