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Prosecution of Nazi criminals in Germany in the 50th years


Taking into account the current strain of relations between the Russian Federation on the one hand by both Latvia and Estonia — with another on the attitude towards the former military personnel "vaffen CC" the research of a question of the relation to crimes of times of Nazism in the West, and, first of all, in Germany is of interest.

Now Federal Republic of Germany took the initiative about introduction of criminal penalty in all EU countries for use of Nazi symbolics. However such intolerance to Nazism was created not at once and as it is represented in many respects because so far Germany considers executed the main objective on identification and punishment of Nazi criminals in the territory. Also active prosecution of Nazis in the former GDR played a role that forced West Germany to carry out also measures in this regard not to lose the international prestige.

By Presledovaniye the former Nazis in Germany it was carried out on the basis of the London agreement of the USSR, the USA, Great Britain and France "About prosecution and punishment of the chief war criminals of the European countries of an axis" of August 8, 1945. It is characteristic that the USSR and personally I. Stalin was drawn on a voice -

the number trial while the prime minister of Great Britain U. Churchill, for example, insisted on execution of the chief Nazi criminals without court.

Law No. 10 of Allied Control Council (this body consisting of representatives of the USSR, the USA of Great Britain and France possessed supreme authority in Germany in 1945-1949) of December 10, 1945 defined structures of Nazi crimes and the principles of legal proceedings.

In the first post-war years, first of all under the influence of decisions of the International Tribunal in Nuremberg, in the western occupational zones of Germany (and, first of all, in the American) externally active and mass denazification was carried out. 3660648 former Nazis from whom, however, only 1667 people got to category "the most guilty" were subjected to check by means of special questionnaires (that meant imprisonment up to 10 years or even above). About 1 million was "the least guilty" (or "involved"), and 1.2 million — the innocent. Concerning 1.2 million more former Nazis were dismissed cases on different prichinam1. After formation of Germany the same Americans started mass pardon of the condemned Nazis. About it the chancellor of West Germany K. Adenauer who directly govo-asked

N.N. Platoshkin Presledovaniye of Nazi criminals in Germany in the 50th years

rit about need of use of many "former" in public service, including and in future army.

If till 1949 the West German courts had the right to consider the Nazi crimes committed only in the territory of Germany and against citizens of a Reich (other crimes were in competence of the occupational authorities), then after formation of Germany it is a limit was lifted. However, there was other restriction. Courts of Germany had no right to consider cases of those against whom the western occupational authorities already conducted investigative actions. In practice it resulted in impunity of many former Nazis. In post-war turmoil there was no adjusted system of collecting proofs yet, and many affairs stopped due to the lack of proofs. If these proofs appeared after 1950, then courts of Germany could not investigate case anew any more, and in many cases and just did not want. If in 1948 and 1949 the West German courts took out respectively 1819 and 1523 sentences concerning the former Nazis (they were rather soft especially as the Basic law of Germany abolished the death penalty), then in 1955 only one sentence, including only one to lifelong zaklyucheniyu2 was registered. Distinctive feature of the beginning of the 50th years was the fact that prosecutors of Germany practically did not initiate on own initiative any proceedings against the former Nazis, despite a flow of books and articles in which criminals by name were called. "Load" of staff of prosecutor's office with "usual" crime was given as justification. In total from 1945 to 1955 the West German courts pronounced sentences against 5866 being natsistov3, many of which got off with penalties or probations. And widely the so-called system of "offsets" practiced: if which of "brown" managed to serve at allies one or two years in camps, this term was "set off" at once at emergence of the new aggravating proofs.

It is necessary to emphasize that any person in Germany was not condemned on the ground that it consisted, for example, in CC — the organization which is officially recognized by the International Tribunal in Nuremberg criminal. In the spring of 1955 the limitation period on all crimes of the Nazi period which were punished by imprisonment up to 10 years expired. In translation from legal language on normal it meant that from now on it is only possible to judge those who personally committed deliberate murder in 1933-1945.

And here the West German justice showed just ingenuity miracles actually to stop prosecution of Nazis. Murders were divided on idle time, or unpremeditated (Totschlag), and qualified (Mord). And this gradation was borrowed from the criminal code of times of "The third Reich" which with some amendments continued to work in Germany.

In practice it meant the following. The International Tribunal called the main war criminals who committed crimes against humanity. All other murderers, according to courts of Germany, acted only by order of. To accuse someone of the qualified murder from now on it was required to prove that murder it was committed with "pleasure" or with "interest" in its results. The same who "just" executed the order, hanging up prisoners in camps or making on them brutal medical experiments, were guilty only of manslaughter (like accidental accident of running-down of the motorist the pedestrian) and got off with small terms. Needless to say that it was almost impossible to prove interest in murder. At the same time courts of Germany ignored the Charter of the International Tribunal at all in Nuremberg (in the 50th years it was contemptuously called in West Germany "tribunal of winners", emphasizing allegedly unauthorized nature of this court), in which it was accurately said that the reference to need

implementation of the order is not a mitigating circumstance. Especially as for all the time of investigation of Nazi crimes it was not succeeded to establish any fact of serious punishment in a Hitlerite Reich of those who refused to take part in executions of civilians, for example. Officers of Wehrmacht who considered such "actions" incompatible with military valor a maximum were transferred to other divisions. That is, no risk in similar disobedience existed.

Nevertheless, on July 17, 1954 Adenauer's government carried out through the Bundestag the law

about amnesties, extending to "the crimes committed during the period from October 1, 1944 to July 31, 1945 i.e. in the conditions of force majeure due to the need to execute the order". It was meant that at the end of war the murder, for example, of deserters from Wehrmacht extrajudicially was justified as very much "" the final period of war was psychologically difficult. It is no wonder that the party CDU-CSU bloc blocked rehabilitation of deserters from Wehrmacht up to the middle of the 90th years. Even then, after the collapse of the USSR and elimination of the GDR, these people were considered traitors and "Stalin agents".

The West German Themis's ingenuity resulted in scandalous results. So, for example, the former brigadefyurer (major general) CC Heyde was the chief expert in the organization of the so-called program of euthanasia. According to this program more than 200 thousand "excess eaters" were violently destroyed (mentally patients, cripples and "rasovo defective" children). In 1947 Heyde was arrested, but he ran (it could be made of camps of the western allies rather easily) and under a new surname of Savade got permission to private medical practice. Several years it consisted professor of the Munich university where gave a course of lectures about "famous" Heyde's experiments in questions of euthanasia. At the same time his wife up to repeated

arrest of the husband in 1958 received according to the death certificate Heyde high state pensiyu4.

Provided with pension and other material privileges of the former Nazis and their family the so-called "law 131" adopted on May 11, 1951. It turned out to be consequence of numerous complaints of the former Nazis consisting on civil service till 1945 on Article 131 of the Basic law (constitution) of Germany according to which the persons which were subject to a denazification had no right to hold the state positions. "Law 131" returned these rights to "former" and provided still besides payment of compensations for "illegal" dismissal from work.

The law was frankly scandalous even in the conditions of the "front" anti-Communist state what was Germany in the 50th years. For example, Berthold von Stau-fenberg's widow (it he together with the brother Claus tried to kill Hitler on July 20, 1944) received for the executed husband the state pension in 200 brands monthly. And the widow of the president of so-called national tribunal (highest judicial authority of "the third Reich") Roland Fraysler (Hitler called it "my Vyshinsky") received for the killed when bombing the husband of 1000 brands. As much also Lina Heydrich had (the widow of the deputy of Himmler on the CC Reynhard Heydrich killed by the Czech patriots in 1942). Interested nobody, as Heydrich and Fraysler if they survived, without any doubts, would be sentenced to death even by the western allies.

The former policeman president of Lubeck and the general of CC received from the state compensation in 18 thousand brands for the apartment confiscated from it after 1945. The former burgomaster of Dortmund and an obershturmbannfyurer of SA Lagenkopf estimated the "sufferings" transferred it after 1945 at 42 thousand brands, and the court recognized behind it this huge for those times summu5.

The mass of complaints to "law 131" came to the Federal constitutional court of Germany in Karlsruhe. But also here the court showed the

political "adherence to principles", "having simply rolled up" business.

However, "law 131" played after all with Nazis a bad joke and in a sense led to activization of prosecution "brown" in 1958. The former oberfyurer of CC (a rank between the colonel and the major general) and in 1941 the Police Chief Memelya (Klaipeda) gave on the basis of "law 131" to court with the requirement of restoration on civil service (by the way, after war this person under an assumed name directed the refugee camp in Bavaria). Wrote newspapers about process, and one of readers learned in an oberfyurer of the person directing in the summer of 1941 mass executions of Jews in the territory of Lithuania (as a result of this "action" at least 4 thousand innocent people died). As a result the oberfyu-rer together with the accomplices unexpectedly appeared on a dock on the case of retaliatory "to an aynzattsgruppa Tilsit" ("aynzattsgruppam" were called divisions CC and SD liquidating in the occupied Soviet territory of communists, Jews and others "blasting" and "rasovo defective elements"). This process after long years of "stagnation" in prosecution of the former Nazis drew broad public attention, but only not the federal government. Nevertheless, under pressure of public opinion the Ministers of Justice of all lands of Germany founded on December 1, 1958. The central department on investigation of Nazi crimes (so-called. Liu-dvigsburgsky center). The center had to collect (including and abroad) materials

about Nazi crimes and to report them to the authorities of prosecutor's office. This institution had no right to conduct criminal prosecution. From 1958 to 1963 the center made 645 preliminary investigations from which 418 were sent to prosecutor's office. Courts organized on the basis of these materials of 45 processes against 152 people (33 of them were justified, 19 they — are sentenced to life imprisonment, and 94 went to prison for different terms) 6.

Of course, creation of the Lyudvigsburgsky center was an obvious step forward in comparison with the period of oblivion of 1953-1957. However it should be noted that in a certain measure the establishment of this department was the forced reaction to loud processes against Nazis in the socialist countries. A certain pressure was carried out also by Israel, including through an influential Jewish lobby in the USA.

In general the denazification in West Germany by the end of the 50th years led to the fact that most of officials of Germany at the federal level or consisted in NSDAP, or loyally cooperated with Hitler's regime. Especially many former Nazis were in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany, and it quite suited Adenauer. For comparison we will notice that after 1990 were it is universal all diplomats of the former GDR are discharged from office though nobody ever recognized this state as criminal. Even the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the GDR in Berlin was demolished to the basis as the Foreign Ministry of Germany did not want to occupy the building with such tradition. However, the scrupulousness did not prevent to move to the building built at Hitler the reykhsbanka and the Ministry of Finance of Germany perfectly feels in the building of the former ministry of aircraft of Goering.

All in Germany from 1955 to 1982 criminal cases against 84,463 persons who were suspected of commission of Nazi crimes were brought and investigated. However affairs of only 6432 people came to court. For comparison we will notice that in the GDR more than 12 thousand former Nazis were condemned though the population of the GDR was about 4 times less, than in FRG7.

Taking into account the above it is represented that the strange tolerance of the European Union and NATO in relation to rehabilitation of the former Nazis in the countries of the Baltics speaks in many respects and that circumstance that the western countries in the years of "Cold War" showed softness to the former Nazis, ignoring joint decisions on the matter of the countries of the anti-Hitlerite coalition.

1 I.A. Ledyakh. Nazi criminals and judicial practice in Germany. M.,1973. Page 62-63.
2 Rueckerl A. Die Strafverfolgung von NS-Verbrechen 1945-1978. Heidelberg/Karlsruhe, 1979. S. 45.
3 Ibid. S. 47.
4 I.A. Ledyakh. Decree. soch. Page 94-95.
5 Grosser A. Die Bonner Demokratie. Deutschland von draussen gesehen. Duesseldorf, 1960. S. 274.
6 I.A. Ledyakh. Decree. soch. Page 94-95.
7 N.S. Alekseev. Crimes and punishment. M, 1986. Page 381.
Isaksen Linn
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