7 Jan. 46

DR. EXNER: Well, if such chaotic conditions really existed, why didn't you alter the system?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: Because I was never given the requisite authority.

DR. EXNER: I beg your pardon?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: Because I was never given authority. I could not issue orders, I had no disciplinary powers, and I was not an appointing authority for military courts.

DR. EXNER: Then did you make a report on the existing conditions to your superior officers?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: Every day. I had a permanent staff at Himmler's headquarters.

DR. EXNER: Did you suggest any changes?


DR. EXNER: And why were these changes never realized?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: I think I have already expressed myself quite clearly on this point: because I think that these changes were not desired.

DR. EXNER: You also, as you have informed us, reported to your superior authorities on the number of enemy dead, wounded, and prisoners after each operation. Tell me what, approximately, was the proportion of enemy prisoners to the enemy dead?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: The figures varied in each case. I cannot generalize, but it was a fact that prisoners usually far outnumbered the enemy dead.

DR. EXNER: The prisoners outnumbered the dead?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: Yes, but only in the years after the order allowing prisoners to be taken.

DR. EXNER: The system was harsher at first, you say, and milder later on?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: Yes, it was milder insofar as we now had definite orders stating where the prisoners were to be brought and to whom they were to be turned over. There were no such orders in the beginning.

DR. EXNER: Can you name any orders which you received from military authorities, dealing in any way with the annihilation of millions of Slavs?

VON DEM BACH-ZELEWSKI: I already gave my answer to that question to the prosecutor when I said that a written order to that effect did not exist.