4 Jan. 46

became members. At the final conference for Barbarossa 17 additional members were present and at the two meetings with Hitler, at which the aggressive plans and the contempt for treaties were fully disclosed, the entire group was present.

The military defendants will perhaps argue that they are pure technicians. This amounts to saying that military men are a race apart from and different from the ordinary run of human beings — men above and beyond the moral and legal requirements that apply to others, incapable of exercising moral judgment on their own behalf.

What we are discussing here is the crime of planning and waging aggressive war. It stands to reason that that crime is committed most consciously and culpably by a nation's leaders — the leaders in all the major fields of activity which are necessary to and closely involved in the waging of war. It is committed by propagandists and publicists. It is committed by political leaders, by diplomats, by the chief ministers, by the principal industrial and financial leaders. It is no less committed by the military leaders.

In the nature of things, planning and executing aggressive war is accomplished by agreement and consultation among all these types of leaders. And if the leaders in any notably important field of activity stand aside or resist or fail to co-operate, then the program will at the very least be seriously obstructed. That is why the principal leaders in all these fields of activity share responsibility for the crime, and the military leaders no less than the others. Leadership in the military field, as well as in other fields, calls for moral wisdom as well as technical astuteness.

I do not think that the responsible military leaders of any nation will be heard to say that their role is that of a mere janitor, or custodian, or pilot of the war machine which is under their command and that they bear no responsibility whatsoever for the use to which that machine is put.

The prevalence of such a view would be particularly unfortunate today, when the military leaders control forces infinitely more powerful and destructive than ever before. Should the military leaders be declared exempt from the declaration in the Charter that planning and waging aggressive war is a crime, it would be a crippling, if not a fatal blow to the efficacy of that declaration.

Such is certainly not the view of the United States. The Prosecution here representing the United States believes that the profession of arms is a distinguished profession. We believe that the practice of that profession by its leaders calls for the highest degree of integrity and moral wisdom no less than for technical skill. We believe that, in consulting and planning with the leaders in other