PART 5 :

CROSS-EXAMINATION

 

TB

The war ended 15 years before my birth and yet throughout my youth

Nazis were the personification of enemy.

The cold war may have raged, but films, cartoons, and history lessons

focused on the vanquished German dictatorship.

 

The victory was ours, we were told, and the victory was over evil.

Small wonder then that the Nazi leaders were to haunt us.

We tried to make out their evil in their black and white photographs.

And at the trials, they were found guilty of 'bestial enormities.'

 

And yet Maxwell Fyfe wrote:

'I believe that had anyone suggested to three-quarters of the defendants in 1933

that they should do the things which they did without a tremor of conscience in 1943,

they would have refused with genuine indignation.'

 

They were men whose abuse of power, and the consequent corruption had eroded their nature.

This erosion was born from a perversion of many aspects of contemporary European life,

shared across the continent.

 

SEC

After nearly three months of sifting and exploring the evidence,

the prosecutors were preparing to cross-examine,

but not before Maxwell Fyfe received one visit from Sylvia.

 

RB

I had a serious word with Sink about your coming visit.  

I think that the best way is for me to ask Lawrence to invite you and then get it confirmed by the Americans.  There will no difficulty I am sure.  It would be wonderful to see you here

and laying on visits to the blue Danube and even the somewhat grey Grand Hotel.

 

LB

You have been clever and persevering about my visit.  

The chief pleasure is that you must really want me to come out as much as I want to come.

 

RB

We shall have a grand time.  Pointing out the sights will be fun enough -

and we shall try and arrange some less formal parties which will, I hope, not be unamusing.

 

SEC

The Grand Hotel at Nuremberg is one giant bustle.  

Day and night dozens of cars are parked before the entrance in the bitter cold –  

among them the most elegant and expensive saloon cars of English and American design,

adorned with one, two,  and even three stars indicating that they belong to Generals.  

The Hotel is overflowing.  

Persons below the rank of Colonel have hardly a chance to find accommodation.  

Even Russian and French Generals have to be content with simple little rooms.  

Enormous quantities of whiskey and vodka are drunk in the bars, there is dancing every evening,

everything is in full swing.  

All the world seems to have arranged a rendez vous at Nuremberg.

 

LB

Darling, this is from the plane just to say I am thinking of you and all we have done...

I can now picture your life and surroundings which make them seem less remote and we are on the last lap.  

I hope and pray it will not be too arduous for you but I am now completely satisfied

that you are making history in a real way.

 

RB

We have jumped into the preparation of the cross-examination with a bang.

I have been reading transcripts and preparing notes every night.

It is rather a good thing because it makes the change from your presence to absence easier

when there is work.

 

SONG - NOW GOD BE THANKED

 

SEC

Now, God be thanked

Who has matched us with His hour

And caught our youth, and wakened us,

Wakened us from sleeping,

 

VOICES

Now, God be thanked

 

RB

We started the pruning of the defendant's witnesses and documents, Saturday, in open court.

The other delegations have, strangely enough, left this detailed task to me

and I spent the day until 4 o'clock bobbing up and down arguing with German counsel.  

I thoroughly enjoyed it.

 

SEC

Now God be thanked

 

VOICES

Now, God be thanked

Who has matched us with His hour

And caught our youth, and wakened us,

Wakened us from sleeping.

 

SEC

Now, God be thanked

 

VOICES

Now God be thanked

 

SEC

Glad from a world grown old and cold and weary,

Leave the sick hearts that honour could not move,

And half-men, and their dirty songs and dreary,

To turn, as swimmers into cleanness leaping.

 

VOICES

Now, God be thanked

 

SEC

Who has matched us with His hour,

And wakened us from sleeping,

 

VOICES

To turn as swimmers into cleanness leaping.

 

RB

I had my first bit of cross-examination to-day – Goering’s witness, Field Marshal Kesselring.

Everyone was frightfully nice about it.  

In my own view - after being unnecessarily het up about it, afraid I should not come off -

I did rather knock Hell out of a conceited German Marshal.

 

VOICES

Now, God be thanked,

 

SEC

Now, God be thanked,

Who has matched us with His hour,

With hand made sure, clear eye, and sharpened power.

 

VOICES

As swimmers into cleanness leaping,

 

SEC

We who have known shame, we have found release there,

As swimmers into cleanness,

 

 

VOICES

As swimmers into cleanness,

As swimmers into cleanness,

Now, God be thanked.

 

TRANSCRIPT OF THE TRIAL

 

DMF

 

Now the ecape about which I am asking you took place on the 25th March. I want you to have that date in mind. The decision to murder these young officers must of been taken very quickly

because the first murder actually took place on 26th of March. Do you agree with that?

It must have been taken very quickly. A Grossfahndung -- a general hue and cry

I think would be the British translation -- was also issued at once

in order that these should be arrested; isn't that so?

 

Goering

 

That is correct. whenever there is an escape, and such a large number of prisoners escaped,

automatically in the whole Reich, a hue and cry was raised, that is,

all the authorities had to be on the lookout to recapture the prisoners.

 

TRANSCRIPT ENDS

 

RB

I think that my cross-examination of Goering went all right.  Everyone was very pleased.  

Jackson had not only made no impression but actually built the fat boy up further.

 

LCB

Darling, it is a glorious day with bright sun and flowers coming out in the parks,

so perhaps this long long winter is going to end sometime. Also The Times and Telegraph

and doubtless all the papers say that your cross examination went beautifully

'in a few skillful questions...' The Times says. I fear Mr JJ felt a little out of it.

 

I am surrounded by beautiful newspapers full of quite hysterical praise for you.  

Last night we heard you on the air in The News, and this morning I took Pam with me to the BBC

where they had worked out a most interesting programme of your cross-examination of Goering.

Your whole voice and personailty came right into the room.

 

CROSS EXAMINATION

CLICK ON IMAGE TO VIEW FILM EXTRACTS.

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