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Baltic States investigation. [First interim report] (Volume pt. 1) online

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tions between Stalin and Molotov, on one side, and Ribbentrop on the
other.

Ribbentrop wanted first that the line or the border between the
spheres of influence, the Russian and German influence spheres could
be along the River Daugava.

Mr. Kersten. How do you spell that?

Mr. Rastikis. D-a-u-g-a-v-a. But Stalin said : We didn't agree
with that. Then the second proposal of Ribbentrop was the north
border of Lithuania or the border between Lithuania and Latvia,

That means that Latvia and Estonia will belong or will be in the
Russian influence sphere and the whole of Lithuania into the German
influence sphere.

The Russians did not agree with this proposal either. The third
jjroposal of Ribbentrop wnis the river Nemunas.

Mr. Kersten. How do you spell that ?

Mr. Rastikis. N-e-m-u-n-a-s. That means that one part of our
territory will belong to Russia and the second part, the west or the
southwest part

Mr. Kersten. This was the Soviets and the Nazis haggling back and
forth over the division of this area, is that right ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes. But the Russians did not agree with Ribben-
trop's proposal either. And they agreed, the Germans and Russians,
that one part, the west part of our territory will belong to Germany
and the other part will be in the Russian influence sphere.

Mr. Urbsys and another member of our delegation could not believe
that we are already divided but Stalin told us that it is so, it is so.
This time, or that night — or, the second meeting was ended between
1 and 2 in the morning, early in the morning.

We came back to our hotel and then to our Legation, the Lithuanian
Legation, we told betw^een us w^hat we have to do, that we cannot agree
with such proposals or such dictate of the Russians, and Mr. Urbsys
decided to send two members of our delegation to Lithuania, to
Kaunas, and to ask, first, to inform our Government about what we
heard from Molotov and Stalin and about what we can do. Second,
to ask the Government wdiat they wnll do and what they say to us what
we have to do. The 2 men or 2 members of our delegation were Mr.
Bizauskas and I, and the second morning, early in the morning, we
went to Lithuanian by plane from Moscow, and at the same day, in
the office of our President of Republic, was a meeting of our Govern-
ment. We informed about all what we heard in Moscow and the
Government had a long discussion and after these discussions it was
decided that Lithuania is in a very, very bad situation; that we are
now between 2 enemies, between the Soviet Union and Hitler's Ger-
many; that we are already divided between 2 of these countries and



382 .BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION

that we must do something to ease our position and that we can sign
the agreement pact — mutual security pact, but we should continue the
parleys longer about military bases.

Mr. Kersten. Concerning the military bases, the Soviet bases that
would be allowed in Lithuania ?

Mr. Rastikis. Soviets — not we, but Soviet.

Mr. Kersten. I understand. They insisted

Mr. Eastjkis. They insisted to allow it, but, in fact, it was a dic-
tate — not allow, but must.

Mr. IvERSTEN. In other words, it was a dictate ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes. Then, the next day, we came back to Moscow
and in the evening, about 11 o'clock at night, we received a call from
the Kremlin. We went to the Kremlin. Stalin was not present at
that time, just Molotov and Potiomkan. Molotov was very angry
because he knew that we were in Lithuania and he said, he asked us —
not us — but the Minister, Urbsys — "]\Ir. INIinister, what is new over
there, especially in Germany?" Mr. Urbsys would just say that the
news is very bad. Our Minister of Foreign Affairs knew already at
that time what Stalin told us about the agreement between Molotov —
between Stalin and Ribbentrop was through.

Then came Stalin and showed us a map of the general staff of the
Red Army, and that map showed the location of the new military
basis of the Soviet Army. The Soviets wanted to have the Russian
military bases all along the river, along the German boundary; at
many points in Lithuania.

They wanted, first, 50,000 ; then they wanted 35,000 ; and then 25,000
Red troops, and they stated that the least they must have would be
25,000 ; that is the least number.

Mr. Kersten. Soviet troops?

Mr. Rastikis. Soviet troops; yes. But during the conversation,
and at the end of the meeting, they agreed to 20,000 troops.

Mr. Kerstex. Twenty thousand troops?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes. And Mr. Urbsys protested, but he could do
nothing. That is all, and he must agree with them.

Then there was the second question about communistic propaganda
in our country, at that time, when we will have Russian troops in our
territory. Molotov, and especially Stalin, said that it will not be
propaganda ; that it would not come in as propaganda in our country,
and if the Lithuanian Communists — we had at that time a very small
number of Lithuanian Communists, but if the Lithuanian Commu-
nists wanted to do any propaganda, that "we can help you and our
troops will help you, too."

Mr. Kersten". So, Stalin solemnly promised, or, rather, prom-
ised

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; several times during this meeting.

Mr. Kersten (continuing). That the Communists in Lithua-
nia

Mr. Rastikis. Will not act against our country.

Mr. Kersten (continuing). Will not in any way have pro-Commu-
nist propaganda?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. That even the Red troops will help stop them?

Mr, Rastikis. Yes; that they will help our position. Of course, we
didn't believe such declarations.



BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION 383

Mr. I^RSTEN. Yes. -^ i j:

Mr. Rastikis. The third question was about Vimius, tlie capital ot
our territory, because at that time the capital of Lithuania was occu-
pied by the Eed army.

Mr. Kersten. Now^, finally, an agreement was signed, a mutual
assistance agreement ?

Mr. Eastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Is that correct?

]\Ir. Rastikis. Yes. It was declared that we had no other way, and
that we must agree.

Mr. Kersten. You mean, there was no choice ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes; there was no choice for us. There was no
choice ; yes. And INIolotov and Urbsys signed three documents. That
was on October 10, about 1 or 2 o'clock, early in the morning, in the
office, or in the room of Molotov, and with Molotov there. Three docu-
ments, the mutual

Mr. Kersten. Assistance pact?

Mr. Rastikis. Assistance pact ; yes. The first, apparently was that ;
and then there was an appendix to this pact, a secret appendix to the
pact, about the number of troops in our territory, and the third docu-
ment was a map.

Mr. Kersten. Showing the military bases?

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, no; the boundary. The boundary between
Lithuania and White Russia. This was signed by Molotov from the
Russian side and by Urbsys.

Mr. Kersten. For Lithuania?

Mr. Rastikis. For the Lithuanian side; yes.

Mr. Kersten. Mr. Reporter, will you mark this, please ?

(The document was marked "Exhibit 15-A." See map facing p.
666.)

Mr. KJERSTEN. General, I w^ll show you a photostat of a map, which
has been marked "Exhibit 15-A" for identification. There has been
testimony concerning this map in our hearings before, I believe, and
I also believe that Former President Herbert Hoover testified about it.

I will ask you to look at that map, which you have looked at pre-
viously this morning.

And I will point to you what purports to be Stalin's signature and
also Ribbentrop's signature.

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; I see it.

Mr. Kersten. I will ask you whether or not this map was in ac-
cordance with the agreement that was arrived at between the Nazis
and the Communists that affected this area ?

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, yes. That is, yes. That is quite clear.

Mr. Kersten. I will offer this map at this time into the record.
I think it should be a part of the record.

Now, General, the agreements that you testified to, the mutual as-
sistance agreements, I believe they are already in the record, from
Washington, as I recall, guaranteed noninterference in the internal
affairs.

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, yes.

Mr. Kersten. Of Lithuania.

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, yes, yes,

Mr. Kersten. Except that it provided for the military occupation
by the Soviet troops of certain bases ; is that correct?



384 BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION

Mr. Rastikis. Yes; just bases.

Mr. Kersten. And when did the Soviet troops first go into those
bases ; do you know ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. What month, or when was that?

Mr. Rastikis. That was at the end of October 1939.

Mr. Kersten. Within a few weeks after the agreement ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; after the agrement, yes.

Mr. Kersten. And that was in the fall of 1939 ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. And what happened in June of 1940, the following
year ?

Mr. Rastikis. June 1940, 1 was at that time not in the active serv-
ice of the army, in the reserve, but I knew something about that. The
4th of June 1940, Russian military bases began to make some diffi-
culties and some provocations with our security officers of the Lith-
uanian Army, especially officers of the Lithuanian security police, or
political police.

At last, on June 15, 1940, our government received an ultimatum
from Moscow that Russian military bases in Lithuania are not safe
and that the Lithuanian Government must agree to change their gov-
ernment; second, to allow to march into Lithuanian territory more
troops of the Russian Army ; and third, that our Minister of Interior
Affairs, General Skucas

Mr. Kersten. How do you spell that ?

Mr. Rastikis. S-k-u-c-a-s, and the Director of Political Police of
Lithuania, Mr. Povilaitis.

Mr, Kersten. How do you spell that?

Mr. Rastikis. P-o-v-i-l-a-i-t-i-s; he must be charged and taken to
court.

Mr. Kersten. Charged with what ?

Mr. Rastikis. That they acted against the Communists and that
they did these provocations with the soldiers of the Russian military
bases.

Mr. Kersten. At this point I notice Congressman O'Brien coming
into the room and I ask him to join us.

Mr. Rastikis. The ultimatum received in Moscow by our Minister
of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Urbsys, at midnight, between June 14 and 15,
and until 10 o'clock of June 15 the Lithuanian Government had to
answer yes or no.

Mr. Kersten. Was this ultimatum pertaining to a change of govern-
ment ? Will you state whether or not Moscow had prepared a list of
names for the new Lithuanian Government.

Mr. Rastikis. No ; at that time we knew nothing about such a list
from the Moscow side.

Mr. Kersten. Later on was there such a list?

Mr. Rastikis. Later, yes. But not at that time, at the time of the
ultimatum. And at that time, on June 15, a large number of new
troops of the Red army was concentrated on our border between Lith-
uanian and the Soviet Union, about two armies, the eigth and the
eleventh armies of the Red armies.

Our Government had a meeting during all the night and early in the
morning it was decided that we have no other way; we can change the
Government of Lithuania ; maybe Moscow will agree with a new man



BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION 385

in Lithuania, of Lithuanian patriots, of course, and that our President
of the Republic, in protest of this ultimatum, will go abroad, our
President of the Republic, Mr. Smetona.

Early in the morning I was invited to the office of the President
of the Republic where took place the meeting of the government, and
it was offered to me to build a new government.

I wanted not to agi^ee, because

Mr. Kersten. You mean it was offered by President Smetona and
other Lithuanians

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten (continuing) . That perhaps a new government might
be more satisfactory to the people in Moscow.

JNIr. Rastikis. To Moscow, than the first one.

Mr. Kersten. All right.

Mr. Rastikis. First, I wanted not to agree, but at least I saw the
situation was very, very bad, and that this was no time now for long
discussions, and I agreed.

But after several hours, when Moscow knew already that a new
candidate for the new Prime Minister of Lithuania had been set up,
and our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Urbsys was still in Moscow,
and Mr. Molotov himself said to him that the Russians were not
satisfied with my candidate for the new office and that Mr.
Dekanozov

Mr. Kersten. Dekanozov was a Soviet official ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, a Soviet official, former Soviet Ambassador in
Berlin.

Mr. Kersten. And he was one of Beria's men, was he not?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. In the NKVD ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. What happened to Dekanozov since that time, do you
know?

Mr. Rastikis. Later, first Dekanozov was the Soviet Ambassador
to Berlin, to Germany.

Mr. Kersten. I mean recently.

Mr. Rastikis. To Germany ?

Mr. Kersten. We believe he was liquidated; is that your under-
standing?

Mr. Rastikis. I don't know exactly, but he was leader, the NKVD
chief in Transcaucausus. I don't know what has happened later with
him.

JNIr. Kersten. What does Moscow say about Dekanozov ?

Mr. Rastikis. That Dekanozov would come to Kaunas and give
you help to build a new Lithuanian Government.

Mr. Kersten. So the NKVD moved in to help build a new Lithu-
anian Government ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; in such a way my mission was ended. On the
same day Dekanozov by plane came to 'Kaunas, and with the rest of
our Government, the Lithuanian Government, later the dictator Dek-
anozov and Pozdniakov.

In 2 days there was built a new Cabinet, a new Communist Cab-
inet.

Mr. Kersten. A new government?

Mr. Rastikis. A new government.



386 BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION

Mr. Kersten. Tell me this, General : Was there any member of thxS
new Communist government selected by the choice of the Lithuanian
people ?

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, no, oh, no, sir.

Mr. Kersten. It was a list completely dictated by Moscow, was it?

Mr. Rastikis. Completely dictated from Moscow, to Mr. Dekanozov
and Mr. Pozdniakov from the Soviet Ambassador.

Mr. Kersten. Did you or President Smetona, or any member of the
legitimate Lithuanian Government have any ability to change that?

Mr. Rastikis. No.

Mr. Kersten. Wlio was the head of the new Communist govern-
ment?

Mr. Rastikis. The head of the new Communist government was
Paleckis.

Mr. Kersten. He is still the Communist puppet in Lithuania ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; he is still at the present time.

Mr. Kersten. After the Communists took over, what happened to
you then ?

Mr. Rastikis. The Red army, two armies — two Red armies which
I mentioned already — the eighth and the eleventh — occupied the whole
territory of Lithuania.

Mr. Kersten. About when was that?

Mr. Rastikis. June 15 of 1940. One week before June 15 I came
back to the Lithuanian Army. Our Government was still yet at that
time and I got the post of Chief of General Staff — General Staff,
Academy of General Staff — school.

Mr. Kersten. That would be like a military school.

Mr. Rastikis. Military school; military academy.

Mr. Kersten. Like our West Point in the United States, a military
school for officers.

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; for officers.

Mr. Kersten. You were taken out of active military

Mr. Rastikis. But it was before the Russians came to our country.

Mr. Kersten. Yes.

Mr. Rastikis. I stayed a short time in the army together with other
officers — Lithuanians, other patriots — ^but later they put me in the
reserve together with other officers who were not satisfied with the
new order in Lithuania. Later on I was w^ithout a job and I got the
information from another Lithuanian who had information from
the Russians in NKVD that it is preparation for my arrest. I got,
several times, such information, and after long discussions with my
wife, I decided to go into the woods.

Mr. Kersten, Into the woods ?

Mr. Rastikis. Into the woods, yes. I go in February of 1941 — in
February 1941. My wife and my children, three daughters, stayed
in Kaunas, and at that time when I was in the woods the NKVD
came to our home. First, they arrested my wife, but it was a home
arrest — at home — and they looked for me that I will come back, and
after several weeks the arrest was over, but in May 1941 my wife
was arrested again and put into jail, into prison in Kaunas, and our
three daughters, without parents, stayed by our grandparents. On
the 14th of June 1941, just 1 week before the beginning of war between
the Russians and Germans



BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION 387

Mr. Kersten. The Communists were still in control in Lithuania on
June 14?

Mr, Rastikis. Yes. Just 1 week before the beginning of the war
between the Russians and the Germans, they took all my children,
my daughters — one 11 years old; the second one 4 years; and the
third between 11 and 12 months old — all my children, without parents,
without father or mother, and deported them to Siberia.

Mr. Kersten. To Siberia?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, to Siberia. I did know nothing at that time.

Mr. Kersten. But you later ascertained this ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, but hiter I—- —

Mr. Kersten. You found this out ?

Mr. Rastikis. P'ound it out, yes.

Mr. Kersten. Now, I do want to go back into that document, but
before I do, I want to ask you when did you return to Lithuania ?

Mr. Rastikis. Just in the first part of the war between the Russians
and Germany. Just in the beginning of the war between the Russians
and the Germans.

Mr. Kersten. Now, did you get out of the country in this period
between February and June, or were you hiding in the woods ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, first, I was hiding in the woods in the west
part of Lithuania; near the Lithuanian-German border.

Mr. Kersten. Yes.

Mr. Rastikis. But, several weeks later, it was too hard over there,
because the Communists were looking everywhere for me.

Mr. Kersten. You were near the top of their list, weren't you?

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, yes, and in March of 1941, I had no choice. I
could not stay any more in our fatherland, in our country, and I
had to go thi'ough across the border into Germany.

Mr. Kersten. Yes.

Mr. Rastikis. I was in Germany until June 22, until the beginning
of the new war between the Russians and the Germans, and then, just
in the beginning of the war, I came to look for my children and my
wife in Kaunas. I found my wife. She was liberated by our parti-
sans in Kaunas, but I didn't find my children.

Mr. Kersten. There was, in Lithuania, existing during this period,
and up through the retreat of the Communists

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. A Lithuanian partisan organization.

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, or an activists' organization,

Mr. Kersten. An activists' organization ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. Composed mostly of young patriotic people ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; of young patriotic people.
^ Mr. Kersten. That had no connection whatsoever with either the
Nazis or the Soviets ?

Mr. Rastikis. Oh, no, no, nothing.

Mr. Kersten. We have already had considerable testimony about
this partisan organization?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. To the same effect.

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Did you say they liberated your wife?



388 BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION

Mr. Rastikis. Yes. They liberated her in Kaunas, and in some
other places in Lithuania, they were liberated, and among the liber-
ated prisoners was also my wife. She was sentenced already for de-
portation but the Communists

Mr. Kersten. Had to leave too quick ?

Mr. Rastikis. Had to leave too quick ; yes, sir.

Mr, I^RSTEN". You got back into Kaunas, and when you got back
there, I will ask you if you came into possession of any documents at
that time?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. Will you mark this as an exhibit.

( The document was marked "Exhibit 15-B." See p. 667. )

Mr. Kersten. I show you what has been marked as "Exhibit 15-B,"
and ask you if you recognize this ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; this is a document which I find after the Com-
munists was away.

Mr. Kersten. What is this ?

Mr. Rastikis. That is the decision for my arrest, and in jail.

Mr. Kersten. Is this a Russian-written document ?

Mr. Rastikis. It is a Russian-written document, and some places
it is Lithuanian translations.

Mr. Kersten. And is this the original NKVD arrest warrant for
you?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. This came out of the NKVD headquarters at Kaunas ;
did it not?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes ; and I find that other people find something also.

Mr. Kersten. Similar things ?

Mr. Rastikis. Similar things ; yes.

Mr. Kersten. In other words, the NKVD had to run so fast that
they left a lot of their documents behind ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. Now, I will direct your attention to a paragraph of
this warrant that reads, in part 58-1, paragraph A

Mr. Rastikis, Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Of the Soviet criminal code

Mr. Rastikis. Of the criminal code ; yes.

Mr. Kersten. Are you familiar with that paragraph?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. As I understand it you are charged with a violation
of this paragraph ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. What is the penalty for a violation of that para-
graph ?

Mr. Rastikis. That is only death.

Mr. Kersten. Death?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. That was on file in the NKVD headquarters, is that
right?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. After you got back in the country ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kersten. I will make this a part of the record, without objec-
tion. Now, this is the original document



BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION 389

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, sir, this is the original document.

Mr. Kersten. For your arrest?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mf. Kersten. Subsequently, or later on, after the end of World
War II, you were in a D. P. camp in Europe, were you not?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes, in Germany.

Mr. Kersten. Wliere was that. General ?

Mr. Rastikis. In Germany.

Mr. Kersten. I see here a translation of that part of the Soviet
criminal code that was referred to in the warrant for your arrest,
58-1-A, which reads in part as follows :

Treason toward the Fatherland, that is, activities of citizens of the Union of
the SSK's, for harming the military power of the Union of SSR —

nnd I suppose SSR means any one of the captive nations of the Soviet
Union ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten (continuing) :

to state independence or territorial integrity such as sabotage, divulging the
military, desertion or flight abroad, are punishable by the supreme penalty,
death by shooting and confiscation of the entire property —

And so forth ?

Mr. Rastikis. That is correct.

Mr. Kersten. Now, would you state wliere you were in DP camps
in Germany?

Mr. Rastikis. I was in two DP camps.

Mr. Kersten. When you were in one camp, did you receive a visit
from some people?

Mr. Rastikis. That was Scheinfeld in Bavaria ; in the south part of
German}', in the American occupation zone.

Mr. Kersten. Was your wife with you ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. And had you seen your children from the time you
were in Lithuania that you were telling about in 1941, up until this
time, 1946 ?

Mr. Rastikis. No, I didn't.

Mr. Kersten. You stated that they were deported to Siberia ?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. And you had not seen them at any time ?

Mr. Rastikis. No.

Mr. Kersten. Had you lieard from them up to this time?

Mr. Rastikis. Not up to this time.

Mr. Kersten. When you were in this DP camp, did you receive a
visit from some people?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. From whom?

Mr. Rastikis. That was in 1946 or 1947 ; I can't remember exactly,
1946 or 1947.

Mr. Kersten. Yes.

]\Ir. Rastikis. At that time two men from the Russian NKVD came
to our DP camp

Mr. Kersten. Were you in the American Zone?

Mr. Rastikis. Yes. Two men came to our DP camp, to me and
to my wife they brought 3 letters from my old daughter and 6 pictures

52975—54 — pt. 1 26



390 BALTIC STATES INVESTIGATION

of my daughters and my wife's mother in Siberia and they persuaded
me and my wife to come back to the Soviet Union

Mr. Kersten. You mean they tried to persuade you ?

Mr. Rastikia, Yes; to come back to Litliuania. The letters from
my daughter, one letter was from Siberia ; the second one was from
Lithuania already. I cannot believe whether it was or not.

Mr. Kersten. From the writing on it, it was-

Mr. Rastikis. Yes; from the writing. And the daughter asked
me in the name of another sister, because the third one was already
dead in Siberia, and in the name of my wife's mother, that we must
go back ; we have to live in the Soviet Union and in some places of
these letters I believe they were not written by my daughter but were



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