Gerhard Weinberg - Paul Schmidt - Hitler's Henchmen TV - Joachim von Ribbentrop - John Dolibois - Chronicle of the Third Reich TV -
When Joachim von Ribbentrop refused to give a copy of the German demands to the British Ambassador [Henderson] at midnight of 30–31 August 1939, the two almost came to blows. Ambassador Henderson, who had long advocated concessions to Germany, recognized that here was a deliberately conceived alibi the German government had prepared for a war it was determined to start. No wonder Henderson was angry; Von Ribbentrop on the other hand could see war ahead and went home beaming. Gerhard Weinberg
It is just before four on the morning of Sunday, 22 June 1941 in the office of the Foreign Minister. He is expecting the Soviet Ambassador, Dekanozov, who had been phoning the Minister since early Saturday. Dekanozov had an urgent message from Moscow. He had called every two hours, but was told the Minister was away from the city. At two on Sunday morning, Von Ribbentrop finally responded to the calls. Dekanozov was told that Von Ribbentrop wished to meet with him at once. An appointment was made for 4 a.m.
Von Ribbentrop is nervous, walking up and down from one end of his large office to the other, like a caged animal, while saying over and over, ‘The Fuhrer is absolutely right. We must attack Russia, or they will surely attack us!’ Is he reassuring himself? Is he justifying the ruination of his crowning diplomatic achievement? Now he has to destroy it ‘because that is the Fuhrer’s wish’. Paul Schmidt, interpreter
He went to war and never saw the new world again. Hitler’s Henchmen II: Von Ribbentrop: The Errand Boy
His goal was unchanged: to climb the social ladder. ibid.
Ribbentrop had found his master; he would never be far from his side. ibid.
This was his greatest hour, the high point of his career. Never again was Ribbentrop so valuable to the Fuhrer as on this day at the side of the red dictator. ibid.
These two [Hitler and Ribbentrop] were prepared to gamble – they didn’t think Britain would stand by Poland. ibid.
With these signatures freed, Poland ceased to exist ... The Germans and Soviets now had a common border. They celebrated their new neighbourliness with a military parade. Poland was crushed. ibid.
The errand boy sought constant contact with his master ... Ribbentrop – an errand boy for the holocaust. As usual the details didn’t interest him. ibid.
Ribbentrop was War Prisoner Number Three ... Even in prison he wasn’t one of the boys. ibid.
Ribbentrop showed no remorse, no feelings of guilt, no understanding. ibid.
Ribbentrop was the first to be taken from his cell. ibid.
The three major world powers are united in their hard and relentless fight against communism and by their ever-growing friendship. They have thus become the creators and guarantors of a new and fairer future. Joachim von Ribbentrop
I felt that I was in the presence of a man who knew what he wanted and who had a very strong personality. Joachim von Ribbentrop
I don’t mean that it is important whether a few of us like Goering, or myself, or the others are sentenced to death or hard labour or whatever, but to the German people we will always remain their leaders, right or wrong, and in a few years even you Americans and the rest of the world will see this trial as a mistake. The German people will learn to hate the Americans, distrust the British and French, and unfortunately, perhaps be taken in by the Russians. That will be the worst calamity of all. I hate to think of Moscow ruling Germany or Germany becoming a territorial possession of the Soviet Union. The Allies should take the attitude, now that the war is over, that mistakes have been made on both sides, that those of us here on trial are German patriots, and that though we may have been misled and gone too far with Hitler, we did it in good faith and as German citizens. Furthermore, the German people will always regard our condemnation by a foreign court as unjust and will consider us martyrs. Joachim von Ribbentrop, to Leon Goldensohn 23 June 1946
I was truly under Hitler’s spell, that cannot be denied. I was impressed with him from the moment I first met him, in 1932. He had terrific power, especially in his eyes. Now the tribunal accuses us of conspiracy. I say, how can one have a conspiracy in a dictatorship government? One man and one man only made all the crucial decisions. That was the Fuhrer. In all my dealings with him I never discussed the exterminations or anything of that sort. What I shall never comprehend is that six weeks before the end of the war he assured me we’d win by a nose. I left his presence then and said that from that time forth I was completely at a loss — that I didn’t understand a thing. Hitler always, until the end, and even now, had a strange fascination over me. Would you call it abnormal of me? Sometimes, in his presence, when he spoke of all his plans, the good things he would do for the Volk, vacations, highways, new buildings, cultural advantages and so forth, tears would come to my eyes. Would that be because I’m a hysterical weak man? Joachim von Ribbentrop, to Leon Goldensohn 15 July 1946
Hitler had selected von Ribbentrop to be his foreign minister because he naively believed that a man who had been dealing in champagne would know something about diplomacy. John Dolibois, interpreter US prosecution
23rd August Ribbentrop flies to Moscow to conclude the treaty with a major ideological enemy of the Nazis. Chronicle of the Third Reich I II III IV, H2 2013
8th February: The propaganda minister delivers his famous Total War speech. ibid.