Thursday, October 20, 2011

Galilée en révisionniste


(Apologue)

Nous sommes en 1633. Ayant à juger le cas de Galileo Galilei, le président du Tribunal de la Sainte Inquisition s’étonne : « Mais, enfin, Galilée, comment pouvez-vous nier l’évidence ? Il vous suffit de vos yeux pour le constater : le soleil tourne bel et bien autour de notre terre, et la terre est statique. L’Ecriture sainte le confirme. Allez-vous persister à nier ce qui est manifestement visible et ce que professent aussi Nos écrits les plus sacrés ? »
Galilée : « A première vue, oui, le soleil tourne autour de la terre, et la terre est statique. Mais j’ai voulu examiner l’affaire de près et, après avoir vu, j’ai tenu à revoir. Un   premier examen, c’est bien ; un nouvel examen, c’est mieux. La plupart du temps ce nouvel examen peut confirmer notre premier jugement mais il peut aussi nous conduire à le réviser. Dans ce dernier cas notre révision nous conduira à exprimer une vue qui sera soit partiellement contraire, soit totalement contraire à ce que nous pensions d’abord. Pour ce qui est du sujet en question, il se trouve qu’aboutissant à une conclusion diamétralement opposée à mon opinion première j’ai opéré un retournement à 180° et découvert que la terre tourne à la fois sur elle-même et autour du soleil. »
S’adressant à ses juges, Galilée leur dit : « Je vous invite à revoir ce que vous n’avez vu qu’une seule fois. Tenez ! J’ai ma lunette astronomique. Aidez-vous-en pour observer et scruter le ciel. Vous constaterez que j’ai raison. »
Le président : « Non Galilée ! Nous n’allons pas utiliser votre lunette. Le faire impliquerait que les Saintes Ecritures pourraient être mises en doute. Confessez à genoux ce qui dicte votre conduite et ce qui vous pousse à vérifier là où il suffisait de croire. »
Galilée : « Je n’ai nulle idée claire des raisons de ma conduite. Il est probable que j’ai agi en vertu d’une disposition d’esprit qui m’est propre et qui me pousse à examiner de près ce qu’on me montre au loin et ce qu’on veut bien m’en raconter. Certains appellent cela l’esprit scientifique. »
Le président : « Scientifique, vraiment ? Ou diabolique ? Galilée, Nous n’avons peut-être pas vos connaissances en matière d’astronomie mais, s’il est une science où Nous excellons, c’est celle qui permet de sonder les cœurs et les reins. Grâce à cette science-là il Nous paraît clair que ce qui vous inspire, c’est l’esprit du Malin ; vous le savez, il se fait gloire de proclamer : ‘Je suis l’esprit qui toujours nie’. Pourquoi niez-vous, et avec une telle persistance dans l’erreur, ce que dictent à la fois la parole de Dieu et la somme tout entière des écrits inspirés de Sa parole ? A eux seuls, votre hardiesse, votre entêtement, votre mauvais caractère prouvent que ce que vous recherchez, en réalité, c’est à semer le trouble : le trouble dans les esprits, le trouble dans Nos institutions, le trouble partout et toujours. » 
Galilée : « Je vous confesse que je suis hardi, entêté et affligé d’un mauvais caractère ; il m’arrive aussi, bien sûr, d’errer ou de ne pouvoir trouver de réponse à certaines questions d’ordre scientifique, mais je n’aime ni le trouble ni le désordre. Je recherche la clarté, la justesse et la justice. J’y sacrifie mon existence. Pour quelle raison ? Je vous répète que je n’en ai nulle idée claire. Mon épouse, la Signora Galilei, pense que le premier devoir d’un homme est de protéger sa femme et ses enfants et elle me reproche, comme vous le faites, d’aller à contre-courant de ce qu’ont décrété les puissants du jour. Pour ma part, j’ai estimé que le premier devoir d’un homme est d’être un homme. »
« Cela dit, je risque le bûcher. Me pliant à votre bon plaisir, j’abjure donc tout ce qui vous fâche. Je ne suis pas un héros comme Giordano Bruno qui, il y a 33 ans, a été si cruellement condamné : on l’a brûlé au bûcher non sans lui avoir apposé un mors de bois à la langue pour l’empêcher de s’adresser à la foule ou de crier. Je vous rends grâce de m’avoir enseigné les bienfaits et la sagesse du conformisme, du panurgisme, du suivisme et, tout simplement, de la lâcheté. Dieu en soit loué ! »
[C’est la légende qui ajoute que, se relevant, Galilée aurait soupiré « Eppur, si muove ! » (Et pourtant elle tourne)].
Pour récompense de son abjuration il eut droit à une prison dorée.

Ce texte aurait une suite ou son pendant : dans une Allemagne réduite en ruines du fait des bombardements alliés on verrait le généralissime Eisenhower discourant au camp d’Ohrdruf, le 11 mai 1945, devant « les crimes du vaincu » alors que ce qu’il avait sous les yeux était… son œuvre ! Les cadavres de Bergen-Belsen déterrés par les troupes du maréchal Montgomery pour les dénombrer et que repoussait vers de grandes fosses un bulldozer conduit par un Tommy ne témoignaient pas, comme on nous l’enseigne, d’une volonté chez les Allemands d’exterminer leurs détenus. Ces cadavres-là ou encore les cadavres ambulants sortis de leurs couches pour être filmés résultaient surtout d’une situation catastrophique créée par les vainqueurs. Dans leur volonté de s’en prendre systématiquement à la population civile, les Alliés avaient arrosé de phosphore les villes allemandes, tuant ainsi des centaines de milliers d’hommes, de femmes et d’enfants. Les survivants en avaient été réduits, en cette année zéro de l’histoire allemande, à vivre, comme des troglodytes dans leurs trous, en proie au froid et à la faim. Par ailleurs, en désorganisant le système ferroviaire allemand et en mitraillant tout convoi sur les routes ainsi que les cultivateurs dans leurs champs, les Alliés avaient non seulement créé le chaos mais aussi empêché le ravitaillement en nourriture ou en médicaments, ce qui, dans les camps, avait provoqué la famine et favorisé les ravages causés par des épidémies de typhus, de dysenterie et de fièvre typhoïde.
Bravo donc aux cinéastes débarqués de Hollywood ou de la BBC qui, filmant ou photographiant « les horreurs des camps », les ont mises sur le compte des vaincus ! Bravo à l’Agence Tass ! Bravo aux auteurs de ces films sur « les atrocités nazies », dont on abreuve un public instruit depuis l’enfance dans la très sainte religion de la Shoah !   
20 octobre 2011

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Le Troisième Reich au secours de la Grèce


En ce moment nos médias évoquent la probabilité d’une banqueroute grecque. Parfois, s’inspirant d’une histoire déformée de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, ils se font aussi l’écho de récriminations et de revendications contre l’Allemagne et présentent, sous la forme de  caricatures, la Chancelière Angela Merkel comme un nouvel Hitler. Il paraît donc intéressant de revenir sur un aspect du comportement, pendant cette guerre, de l’Allemagne, puissance occupante, à l’égard de la Grèce, dont les Allemands avaient chassé les Britanniques en avril 1941.
La réalité est qu’en plein conflit mondial, malgré la guerre des partisans et malgré le blocus exercé par les Britanniques, l’Allemagne a envoyé à la Grèce d’importantes quantités d’or pour y juguler une inflation catastrophique et stabiliser non sans succès la monnaie grecque.
Elle a également envoyé à la Grèce des produits alimentaires pour y combattre la famine menaçante ainsi que des produits d’exportation allemands, et cela malgré la pénurie dont commençait à souffrir le peuple allemand.

Par l’intermédiaire de la Suède, pays neutre, elle s’est mise en rapport avec les autorités britanniques, dont elle a finalement obtenu la levée du blocus des eaux grecques en faveur d’un bateau suédois, chargé de ravitaillement allemand, qui a pu ainsi, chaque mois, quitter Trieste ou Venise pour atteindre le Pirée sans courir le risque d’un torpillage.
Du moins est-ce là ce qu’a rappelé et déclaré aux juges du tribunal de Nuremberg le 27 mars 1946, sans être contredit par la partie adverse, le Baron Steengracht van Moyland qui avait été secrétaire d’Etat au ministère des Affaires étrangères du Reich.
(D’après les actes du procès devant le Tribunal militaire international de Nuremberg : TMI, volume X, p. 128, et volume XI, p. 440-443, pages reproduites ci-après ; il suffit d'un clic pour les agrandir).




Das Dritte Reich zur Rettung Griechenlands


Derzeit erwähnen unsere Medien die Möglichkeit eines griechischen Bankrotts. Manchmal, sich inspirierend aus einer verformten Geschichte des Zweiten Weltkrieges, werden sie auch zum Echo von Beschuldigungen und Forderungen gegenüber Deutschland und präsentieren, in Form von Karikaturen, die Kanzlerin Angela Merkel als einen neuen Hitler. Es scheint also interessant zu sein auf einen Aspekt des Verhaltens Deutschlands während dieses Krieges gegenüber Griechenland zurückzukommen, woraus die Deutschen die Briten im April 1941 verjagt hatten.

Die Realität ist, daß während des weltweiten, sich voll im Gange befindlichen Konfliktes, trotz des Partisanenkrieges und trotz der durch die Briten ausgeübten Blockade, Deutschland an Griechenland bedeutende Mengen an Gold geschickt hat, um dort die katastrophale Inflation einzudämmen und nicht ohne Erfolg die griechische Währung zu stabilisieren.

Es hat auch Lebensmittelprodukte an Griechenland geschickt, um die drohende Hungersnot zu bekämpfen, als auch deutsche Exportwaren, und das trotz der Versorgungsknappheit, worunter das deutsche Volk zu leiden begann.

Über Schweden, neutrales Land, hatte sie Kontakt zu den britischen Behörden aufgenommen, von denen sie schlußendlich die Aufhebung der Blockade der griechischen Gewässer erhalten hatte zugunsten eines schwedischen Schiffes, beladen mit deutscher Lebensmittelversorgung, das so, jeden Monat, Triest oder Venedig verlassen konnte um Piräus zu erreichen, ohne das Risiko einer Torpedierung einzugehen.

Zumindest ist das woran der Baron Steengracht van Mayland, der Staatssekretär im Auswärtigen Amt des Reiches gewesen war, die Richter des Tribunals von Nürnberg am 27. März 1946 erinnert hat und dies erklärte, ohne durch die Gegenseite widersprochen zu werden.

(Nach den Prozeßakten vor dem Internationalen Militärgerichtshof von Nürnberg: IMG, Band X, S. 137, und Band XI, S. 474-477, Seiten hier weiter unten wiedergegeben; mit einem Klick können sie vergrößert werden).
 




When the Third Reich came to the aid of Greece...



Our news media currently bring up the probability of a Greek default. Sometimes, inspired by a deformed history of the Second World War, they also echo recriminations and claims against Germany, and even present Chancellor Angela Merkel in caricatures as a new Hitler. It therefore seems of interest to review an aspect of the behaviour, during that war, of Germany, occupying power, with regard to Greece, from which the Germans had chased out the British in April 1941.

The reality is that in the midst of the worldwide conflict, despite a partisan war and a maritime blockade enforced by the British, Germany sent Greece large quantities of gold in order to quell a catastrophic inflation and to stabilise the Greek currency, efforts that were not without success.
She also sent foodstuffs to Greece so as to stave off a threatening famine, as well as German export goods – and this despite the shortages the German people were beginning to suffer.
Through the intermediary of Sweden, a neutral country, she entered into contact with the British authorities, whom she in the end got to lift the blockade of Greek waters in favour of a Swedish ship loaded with German provisions, which was thus able, each month, to sail from Trieste or Venice and reach Piraeus, the port of Athens, without running the risk of being torpedoed.

At least Baron van Moyland, former Reich foreign secretary, recalled and declared as much to the judges at the Nuremberg tribunal on March 27, 1946, without being contradicted by the adversary.

(According to the official documents of the trial before the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg: IMT, volume X, p. 119 and volume XI, p. 428-432; passages reproduced below.)
 


IMT Volume X     [p. 119]  

27 March 1946  Morning Session

DR. HORN: Witness, you knew Count Ciano. Where and when did you meet him?

VON STEENGRACHT: I knew Count Ciano but not in a political sense, only personally. I cannot remember exactly when I met him; probably it was on the occasion of a state visit. I was working at the time in the Protocol Department in the Foreign Office.

DR. HORN: What experiences did you have with Count Ciano?

VON STEENGRACHT: Since I did not work with him politically, I had no political experience with him.

DR. HORN: Now, another matter. Is it correct that Herr Von Ribbentrop gave orders that under all circumstances the French franc should be sustained against inflation?

VON STEENGRACHT: Such measures can apply only to a time when I was not yet State Secretary. But I know that the basic attitude towards France and all occupied territories was that under all circumstances their currency was to be preserved as far as possible, or rather should be preserved by all means. That is why we often sent gold to Greece in order to attempt to maintain the value of the currency there to some extent.

DR. HORN: What was accomplished in Greece by sending this gold there?

VON STEENGRACHT: By sending gold to Greece we lowered the rate of exchange of foreign currencies. Thus the Greek merchants who had hoarded food to a large extent, became frightened and threw the food on the market, and in this way it was made available to the Greek population again.

DR. HORN: Is it correct that Von Ribbentrop gave strictest orders not to undertake any confiscation in occupied territories but to deal directly only with their governments?

VON STEENGRACHT: If you put the question like that, it is basically correct, but I say, as I said yesterday, that in principle we  had no functions at all in the occupied territories, therefore no Power to confiscate, nor was such power within the jurisdiction of other agencies; but it is correct that we negotiated only with the

[p. 120]

foreign governments and that Von Ribbentrop had most strictly forbidden us to support any direct measures concerning an occupied country which were carried out by other departments.

DR. HORN: For the time being I have no further questions to put to this witness.


****


IMT Volume XI, p. 428-432     

15 April 1946   Afternoon Session 

[p. 428]

[The witness Neubacher resumed the stand] 

THE PRESIDENT: Have you finished, Dr Kauffmann? 

DR. KAUFFMANN: My examination of this witness is finished. 

THE PRESIDENT: Does any other member of the Defense want to ask questions? 

DR. SAUTER: Mr. President, I have some questions to put which are, of course, not in any way connected with Kaltenbrunner, but which refer to subjects which will have to be dealt with later during the case of the Defendant Funk. Since the witness can be called only once, however, I have no other choice than to put to the witness now these questions, which really ought to be put later.
Witness, you said today that the German Foreign Service had sent you to Romania – I believe – on questions of economy. Is it correct that during the time you were working in Romania, you were also representing and handling economic interests in Greece?

NEUBACHER: In the autumn of 1942,  notwithstanding my assignment in Romania, I received a special assignment, together with an Italian financial expert, Minister D'Agostino, to prevent by proper methods the total devaluation of currency and the total disruption of the economic structure in Greece.

DR. SAUTER: Witness, were you suited for such a difficult task by training and previous experience? Please tell us briefly, which posts you held before, so that we can judge whether you were capable of carrying out this task in Greece; but please, Witness, be very brief.

NEUBACHER: I was one of the foremost economic leaders in Austria. At the age of 28 I was a director; at 30 I was the general manager of the Viennese Settlement Corporation; and at the age of 33  I was directing a large combine in the building trade and building material industry. I was an executive of the Austrian National Bank and a member of the Austrian Customs Auxiliary Council. I was a member of the Russian Credit Committee of the City of Vienna and a member of the Commission of Experts for the investigation of the collapse of the Austrian Credit Bank Corporation. Therefore, I was qualified for this task by extensive economic experience.
Moreover, I was quite familiar with the economic problems of the Balkans, since I had last worked on economic questions relating to the Balkans in the central finance administration of I.G. Farben in Berlin.

DR. SAUTER: Witness, several days ago when I visited you in prison, I gave you a report of a commission of the Royal Greek

[p. 429]

Government, addressed to the International Military Tribunal, and I asked you to read it and state your opinion. Is this report correct? 
Mr. President, it is Exhibit USSR-379, and it has the additional Document Number UK-82.
Witness, in this report of the commission the matter is presented as if the economy of Greece had been entirely destroyed by German authorities and that Greece had been plundered, et cetera. In the end this reflects on the Defendant Funk. Please do not go into detail, but tell us briefly what is your impression in this connection.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes, General Rudenko.

GEN. RUDENKO: Mr. President, I would like to make the following statement before the Tribunal: In regard to the report of the  Greek Government, which was presented before the Tribunal by the Soviet Prosecution as provided by Article 21  of the Charter, it seems to me that the question of the Defense Counsel, asking the witness to give his opinion on this particular matter, should be rejected because the witness is not competent to give an opinion on the report of the Greek Government. The Defense Counsel can ask him a concrete question in regard to any particular fact, but that is  all.

DR. SAUTER: Mr. President, if  it is desired, I can, of course, put the questions individually. It will  probably take a little longer, but if the Soviet Russian Prosecution so desires I agree. May I now question the witness? Witness, is it correct...

THE PRESIDENT: Wait a minute. Dr.  Sauter, what exactly is it that you want to ask the witness about this report?

DR. SAUTER: The report of the Greek Government, which has been submitted by the Russian Prosecution, states, for instance, that Germany in its occupation of Greece plundered the country and brought about a famine by exporting an excessive amount of goods. It states that the country was charged excessive occupation costs, and that the country was heavily prejudiced by the clearing system, et cetera. Through this witness, who as the economic expert of the German Foreign Office handled these problems in Greece at that time, I propose to prove: First, that these statements are untrue; second, that this state of affairs prevailed already when the German troops marched in and was not created by the German authorities; and, last, that it was the Defendant Funk who tried repeatedly to improve matters for Greece through the clearing system and had considerable amounts of gold brought to Greece.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, can't you put a few short questions to show that the scheme which this witness introduced into Greece was in accordance with international law and was not unfair to Greece? If you could do that, that would meet the case, wouldn't it?

[p. 430]

DR. SAUTER: Yes, that is what I wanted to do, and I am sure that the witness would have done so on his own initiative.
Now, then, Witness, are you acquainted with the viewpoint of the German economic authorities, and particularly of the Defendant Funk, in regard to the question of the clearing of debts incurred by Greece and the question of how Greece was to be treated with regard to this clearing system?

NEUBACHER: Concerning the mutual financial charges and obligations, I spoke at one time to the Reich Finance Minister, Schwerin von Krosigk, and it was proposed that at some later date after the war the claims and counter-claims were to be settled on the basis of a common denominator.

DR. SAUTER: And at that time, during the war, how was the question of this clearing dealt with?

NEUBACHER: Regarding the economic events in Greece, I can give you information based on my own observations only, starting with October 1942. At that time, when I first came to Athens, the Greek currency had already been considerably devaluated, and the circulation of banknotes had increased by something like 3,000 percent.
Greece also suffered an economic set-back due to the fact that, in addition to a progressing inflation, an attempt had been made to introduce in Greece a planned economy with ceiling prices along German lines. The result was, of course, that the merchants selling Greek goods suffered losses when they were paid later. On the other hand, when I arrived there the importers of German goods made tremendous profits, because they paid Reichsmark at the rate of 60 on the clearing and resold the goods at a rate of about 30,000. This chaos, due to the inflation in connection with the attempt of introducing a planned economy on the German pattern, could be remedied only by transforming the black market in Greece into a completely free market. The two experts of the Axis Powers introduced this measure with considerable success at the end of October 1942. Within a few weeks all shops and markets were full of goods and foodstuffs; the prices of food dropped to one-fifth and prices of manufactured products to one-tenth. This success could be maintained for 4 months in spite of increasing inflation.

DR. SAUTER: Dr. Neubacher, is it true that the Defendant Funk, who was Reich Minister of Economy at that time, proposed during a conversation or in correspondence he had had with you that, in spite of the shortage of goods prevailing in Germany, a considerable amount of goods should be sent from Germany and other European countries, particularly to Greece?


[p. 431]


NEUBACHER: Reich Minister Funk, with whom I discussed the difficulties of my task, and I both fully agreed that a maximum of goods should be transported to Greece, and certainly not only food. I  secured not only 60,000 tons of food at that time but also German export goods, since it was hopeless to try to stop an inflation or the effects of an inflation on the prices, if there were no supplies. Reich Minister Funk supported exports to Greece with the view to a restoration of normal market conditions with every means at his disposal.

DR. SAUTER: You know, Witness, that since transport from Germany to Greece had become impossible, the Defendant Funk made every effort to have goods transported on neutral ships, furnished with British navicerts, from Germany to Greece in order to combat as far as possible the already impending famine.

NEUBACHER: I think that was between 1941 and 1942 when I had not yet arrived in Greece. In 1943, when shipping in Greek waters had completely stopped for us, because all ships had been torpedoed and the railroads had become the object of incessant acts of sabotage and dynamiting, I, with the help of the Swedish Minister, Alar, who directed the International Relief for Greece, applied for British navicerts for food transports to Greece. The British granted this application, and when our own means of transport had ceased to exist, the Swedish boat Halaren went from Trieste or Venice to the Piraeus once a month, loaded with German food supplies for Greece.

DR. SAUTER: And Funk, the Reich Minister of Economy at that time, played an important part in these actions, did he not?

NEUBACHER: Reich Minister of Economy Funk took a very positive interest in the Greek question, a question which is unique in the history of economy, and he supported me in my efforts with every means at his disposal.

DR. SAUTER: Witness, do you know anything about the fact that the Defendant Funk advocated in particular that the occupation costs should be kept as low as possible, and that he took the view that it would be preferable that a considerable part of the occupation costs should rather be charged to the German account so that Greece should not be overburdened? What do you know about that?

NEUBACHER: I know too little of the details of what happened in Berlin; but at long intervals I reported to Reich Minister Funk about the situation in Greece, and I know that he made my reports the basis for his own interventions. He was perfectly aware of the fact that the Greek economic problem during the war and within the blockade was so infinitely complicated that all efforts had to be made to prevent a complete dissolution of the monetary value and

[p. 432]

the economic structure; and he intervened at all times in that respect.

DR. SAUTER: Witness, did Defendant Funk act in such a way that the Greek currency, drachma currency, was devaluated, or that it deteriorated? Or did he, on the contrary, endeavor to back the drachma value, particularly for the purpose of preventing a catastrophic famine? Please state briefly what you know about that.

NEUBACHER: Reich Minister Funk always made every effort in the latter direction. He proved that by enforcing exports to Greece and finally by the grant of a considerable amount of gold for the purpose of slowing down the Greek inflation – which grant, in accordance with the Four Year Plan, involved the gravest sacrifice for Germany.

DR. SAUTER: You say "a considerable amount of gold." There was very little gold in Germany during the war. Can you tell us how large the amount of gold was which the Defendant Funk sent to Greece at that time for the purpose of backing the drachma to some extent and preventing the impending catastrophe? How large was the amount?

NEUBACHER: All told, one and one third million pounds sterling were invested in Greece and Albania, to my recollection.

DR. SAUTER: One and one third million pounds sterling? 

NEUBACHER: Greece and Albania got that amount.

DR. SAUTER: And now, Witness, I have a last question. Is it correct that all these efforts on the part of the German economic management and the German Minister of Economy were often frustrated and foiled, particularly by Greek merchants? To quote just one example, there were cases where German factories sold German engines for 60 drachmas to Greek merchants – that is to say, 60 drachmas which had actually no value – and the Greek merchant sold these same engines which they had bought for 60 drachmas from Germans to the German Armed Forces at 60,000 drachmas apiece. These are supposed to be cases which you discovered and on which you reported to the Defendant Funk, and that is why I am asking you whether that is true.

NEUBACHER: I have the following comment to make about that. It did, in fact, happen, but I want to state that the Greek businessmen had to do that in consequence of inflation and the black market. The Greek people are much too intelligent to be caught up in an inflation. Every child there is a businessman. Therefore, the only possible method for counteracting this obvious speculation, which in itself is not dishonest, was that of converting the black market into a totally free market on sound business lines; and that was the end of these experiments.