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Germany (territory Allied occupation, 1945-1955 : U.S. Zone). Office of Military Government. Civil Administration Division. / Denazification, cumulative review. Report, 1 April 1947-30 April 1948.

Law for liberation from National Socialism and Militarism (German legislation), 5 March 1946, as amended and annotated,   pp. 52-97 PDF (13.5 MB)

Page 58

M. G. Anno:
The period'of probation for a Lesser Offender must be fixed
at a minimum of two years from the date of the decision by the
Tribunal (MGR 9-832 b (5)).
I. A Follower is:
Any person who was not more than a nominal participant
or an insignificant supporter of National Socialism and who
did not manifest himself as a Militarist.
II. Subject to this test, a Follower is in particular:
(1) Anyone who as a member of the NSDAP or of any of
its formations, except HJ and EBDM, did no more than
pay his membership dues, participate in meetings where
attendance was obligatory, or fulfilled unimportant for
purely routine duties which were prescribed for all
(2) Anyone who was a candidate for membership in the
Party and who was not finally admitted as a member.
M. G. Anno:
It is a most important general rule, imposed both by Control
Council Directive No. 24 (MGR 23-161.24) and the Law for
Liberation, that the following persons cannot legally be found to
be Followers by a Tribunal:
a. Persons who have held an office or rank in the NSDAP or
one of its formations (MGR 9-832 b (7) and 9-834.7 d);
b. Persons of such high standing in the community that they
are obviously leaders who influenced others to join Nazi or-
ganizations by the example of their own membership (MGR
9-832 b (8));
c. Persons who have engaged in any Nazi activity beyond
payment of membership dues, participation in meetings where
attendance was obligatory, or fulfillment of unimportant or
purely routine duties prescribed for all members (MGR 9-834.7 d).
Because of the fact that a finding of Follower makes the
respondent eligible for appointment or reinstatement in public or
semi-public office and positions of responsibility in importfnt
private undertakings (unless discretionary sanctions authorized
by Article 18 (2) are imposed), it is of greatest importance that the
definitions of Follower or nominal Nazi contained in the Law and
in paragraph 2 (a) of Control Council Directive No. 24 (MGR
23-161.24) be strictly construed. Otherwise, the most important
denazification objective of the Law for Liberation and Control
Council Directive No. 24 will be defeated (OMGUS letter dated
10 March 1947, file AG 014.311 (IA), subject, "Disapproval of
Proposed Instruction concerning Findings of Follower against
Officers of Nazi Organizations").
It is conceivable that evidence may be produced which may
establish that an office holder in a Nazi organization was no more
than a nominal Nazi or was perhaps even an anti-Nazi who had
penetrated the Nazi organization for subversive purposes. This
APRIL 1948

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