In 1930 Rosenberg was elected to the Reichstag and he became the Party's representative for Foreign Affairs. In April 1933 he was made Reichsleiter and head of the Office of Foreign Affairs (APA) of the NSDAP. In January 1934, Hitler appointed Rosenberg his deputy for the supervision of the entire spiritual and ideological training of the NSDAP. In January 1940, he was designated to set up the "Hohe Schule", the center of Nationalsocialist ideological and educational research and he organized the Einsatzstab Rosenberg in connection with this task. He was appointed Reichsminister for the Occupied Eastern Territories on 17 July 1941.
Crimes against PeaceAs head of the APA, Rosenberg was in charge of an organization whose agents were active in Nazi intrigue in all parts of the world. His own reports, for example, claim that the APA was largely responsible for Romania's joining the Axis. As head of the APA, he played an important role in the preparation and planning of the attack on Norway.
Rosenberg, together with Raeder, was one of the originators of the plan for attacking Norway. Rosenberg had become interested in Norway as early as June 1939, when he conferred with Quisling. Quisling had pointed out the importance of the Norwegian coast in the event of a conflict between Germany and Great-Britain and stated his fears that Great-Britain might be able to obtain Norwegian assistance. As a result of this conference, Rosenberg arranged for Quisling to collaborate closely with the Nationalsocialists and to receive political assistance by the Nazis.
When the war broke out Quisling began to express fear of British intervention in Norway. Rosenberg supported this view and transmitted to Raeder a plan to use Quisling for a coup in Norway. Rosenberg was instrumental in arranging the conferences in December 1939 between Hitler and Quisling which led to the preparation of the attack on Norway and at which Hitler promised Quisling financial assistance. After these conferences Hitler assigned to Rosenberg the political exploitation of Norway. Two weeks after Norway was occupied, Hitler told Rosenberg that he had based his decision to attack Norway "on the continuous warnings of Quisling, as reported to him by Reichsleiter Rosenberg.".
Rosenberg bears a major responsibility for the formulation and execution of occupation policies in the Occupied Eastern Territories. He was informed by Hitler, on 2 April 1941, of the imminent attack against the Soviet Union, and he agreed to help in the capacity of a political adviser. On 20 April 1941 he was appointed Commissioner for the Central Control of Questions Connected with the East European Region. In preparing the plans for the occupation, he had numerous conferences with Keitel, Raeder, GŲring, Funk, Von Ribbentrop and other high Reichs authorities. In April and May 1941 he prepared several drafts of instructions concerning the setting up of the administration in the Occupied Eastern Territories. On 20 June 1941, two days before the attack on the U.S.S.R., he made a speech to his assistants about the problems and policies of occupation. Rosenberg attended Hitler's conference of 16 July 1941, in which policies of administration and occupation were discussed. On 17 July 1941, Hitler appointed Rosenberg Reichsminister for the Occupied Eastern Territories and publicly charged him with responsibility for civil adnistration.
War Crimes and Crimes against HumanityRosenberg is responsible for a system of organized plunder of both public and private property throughout the invaded countries of Europe. Acting under Hitler's orders of January 1940 to set up the "Hohe Schule'', he organized and directed the Einsatzstab Rosenberg, which plundered museums and libraries, confiscated art treasures and collections, and pillaged private homes. His own reports show the extent of the confiscations. In "Aktion-M'' (MŲbel), instituted in December 1941 at Rosenberg's suggestion, 69,619 Jewish homes were plundered in the West, 38,000 of them in Paris alone and it took 26,984 railroad cars to transport the confiscated furnishings to Germany. As of 14 July 1944, more than 21,903 art objects, including famous paintings and museum pieces, had been seized in the West by the Einsatzstab.
With his appointment as Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories on 17 July 1941, Rosenberg became the supreme authority for those areas. He helped to formulate the policies of Germanization, exploitation, forced labor, extermination of Jews and opponents of Nazi rule, and he set up the administration which carried them out. He took part in the conference of 16 July 1941, in which Hitler stated that they were faced with the task of "cutting up the giant cake according to our needs in order to be able: first, to dominate it, second, to administer it, and thrd to exploit it" and he indicated that ruthless action was contemplated. Rosenberg accepted his appointment on the following day.
Rosenberg had knowledge of the brutal treatment and terror to which the Eastern people were subjected. He directed that the Hague Rules of Land Warfare were not applicable in the Occupied Eastern Territories. He had knowledige of and took an active part in stripping the Eastern territoiries of raw materials and foodstuff which were sent to Germany. He stated that feeding the German people was first on the list of claims on the East and that the Soviet people would suffer thereby. His directives provided for the segregation of Jews, ultimately in ghettos. His subordinates engaged in mass killings of Jews, and his civil administrators in the East considered that cleansing the Eastern Occupied Territories of Jews was necessary. In December 1941, Rosenberg made the suggestion to Hitler that in a case of shooting 100 hostages, Jews only be used. Rosenberg had knowledge of the deportation of laborers from the East, of the methods of ''recruiting'' and the transportation horrors and of the treatment Eastern laborers received in the Reich. He gave his civil administrators quotas of laborers to be sent to the Reich, which had to be met by whatever means necessary. His signature of approval appears on the order of 14 June 1944 for the "Heu Aktion,'' the apprehensioin of 40,000 to 50,000 youths, aged 10-14, for shipment to the Reich.
Upon occasion Rosenberg objected to the excesses and atrocities committed by his subordinates, notably in the case of Koch, but these excesses continued and he stayed in office until the end.
The Court finds the Defendant Rosenberg guilty on all four Counts
Explanation of the four Counts of the Indictment:
- Conspiracy to wage a war of aggression or crimes against peace
- waging of a war of aggression
- war crimes
- crimes against humanity