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Prosecution Opens Case Against Nazi General Charged with Mass Murder of Ukraine Jews

The prosecution today opened its case against Nazi General Fritz Erich von Manstein who is being tried by a British military court here on 17 different charges of war crimes, including the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Jews in the Ukraine during the late war. The trial is in its second day.

The prosecutor, Sir Arthur Carr, charged that the German army group which von Manstein commanded carried out in “spirit and letter” the Nazi plans for the destruction of the Jews. This army group, Sir Arthur declared, concentrated Jews in towns, interned them, killed many of them and deported others to the East, causing them untold suffering.

Von Manstein was charged with not only obeying orders in this respect, but in adding his own refinements such as the issuance of orders that “the floating back to East and Upper Silesia of Jewish refugees will be prevented by all possible means.” The prosecution asserted that the Nazi general was implicated in the mass murder of Jews by his failure to protest against the atrocities, “by the frequent use of euphemisms to describe what was sheer murder and by orders to prevent German soldiers not directly engaged in them, from witnessing some of the more outrageous crimes.”

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