German Field Marshal Fritz Erich von Mannstein was today accused before a British military tribunal here with ordering the killing of 10,000 Jews in Simferopel, Crimea, during the Nazi occupation of Soviet territory.
“After the loathsome deed had been completed,” Sir Arthur Comyns Carr, chief prosecution counsel said, “a dispute arose between the German military chief of staff and the Gestapo about the disposition of the watches taken from the unfortunate victims.” The quarrel was settled in favor of the Army by Mannstein himself.
Sir Arthur completed his outline of the charges against the 61-year old Gen. Mannstein who was the commander of the German 11th Army during the war. He announced that the Gestapo General Ohlendorf, former commander of the extermination squads which carried out the mass-killing of Jews, had refused to give evidence for or against Mannstein. Ohlendorf is under death sentence in the Landsberg prison, in Bavaria.
(Jewish circles in London were perturbed by a report in the London Daily Express which said that Gen. Mannstein was “himself a Jew”. The Board of Deputies of British Jews immediately issued a denial that Mannstein, charged with responsibility for the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Jews in the Ukraine during the war, is a Jew.)
The defense sprang a surprise this afternoon by demanding that four convicted Nazi “exterminators” be brought to court to testify in Mannstein’s behalf. However, the prosecution opposed the demand, pointing out that the four — Generals Ohlendorf, Schubert, Braune and Seibert — had given evidence by deposition. Court was adjourned until tomorrow immediately after S.C. Silkin, Mannstein’s Jewish defense attorney, reiterated his demand that the four be brought from a jail in the American zone where they are awaiting execution.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.