Declaration of the United Nations
regarding War Crimes
Great Britain, the United States of North America and the Soviet Union have obtained proof from various sources that war crimes, deliberate mass murders and mass executions are being committed by Hitler’s troops in many of those countries into which they have brought war and from which they are now inexorably being driven out. The brutality of Hitler’s regime is well known – all the peoples, all the countries under Hitler’s yoke had to endure a reign of terror in its most abominable form. However, a newfactor has emerged. Now, that large invaded territories are being saved by the liberation armies rushing forward, it turns out that the retreating Hitler hordes in their desperate situation double their unrestrained brutality. Clear evidence of this are the inhuman crimes which the Hitler hordes are committing in the territories of the Soviet Union which they are forced to leave due to the onrush of the liberating Russian armies. The same is happening on French and Italian soil.
The three Allied Forces, on behalf of the 32 United Nations, declare solemnly and unambiguously: Whichever government will be in power in Germany on the day it is granted a ceasefire – every German officer, every German soldier, every member of the NSDAP – whoever instigated or participated in War Crimes, Mass Murder or Executions will be handed over to the country where he committed his abominable crime. This will be done so that each of these criminals can be indicted and punished according to the laws governments which will have been constituted in those countries. Lists of names with all ascertainable details regarding the War Crimes in all those countries are being compiled, especially on the War Crimes in all overrun territories in the Soviet Union, in Poland, in Czechoslovakia, in Yugoslavia and Greece including Crete and the other Greek islands, in Norway, Denmark, in The Netherlands, in Belgium, Luxemburg, France and Italy.
Thus, every German who is involved in mass executions of Italian officers, the execution of French, Dutch, Belgian or Norwegian hostages, the killings of Croatian farmers - every German guilty of the massacre of the Polish people, the murders in the territories of the Soviet Union from which the enemy is now being cleansed – everybody must know that: He will be returned to the place of his crimes and be judged by the peoples themselves who were the victims of his crimes. To those, who have not yet the blood of the innocent on their hands, we say: Beware! Do not become guilty of shedding blood! This is an immovable fact: The three Allied Forces will track down every guilty person to the furthest corners of the globe and bring him to his prosecutor so that justice can be done.
This declaration does not concern those war criminals whose crimes were committed of the freed countries and their freed in more than one country. Those will be dealt with by the Governments of the Allied Forces on the basis of a common decision.
The most important point of the above Declaration is a warning to those who have as yet not committed any war crimes.
The Nazis know that the war is lost. They know that the end of the war will be their end, too. They go on fighting in order to hold off the day of reckoning. In order to prolong the war, they need to unite as many Germans as possible in one solid block behind them. The only means to create and maintain this unity is the fear of retribution after the defeat. This is why the Nazis wish that as many Germans as possible have to fear the consequences of the defeat as much as they do. Hence, they are trying to draw as many Germans as possible into their monstrous, ever more desperate crimes, only so that the German people will not give up the fight.
The number of guilty people increases with every day this war lasts. The sooner the war ends, the sooner the individual German will be able to avoid being drawn into crimes by Hitler and his partners in crime.