The US Interrogator’s report on Oblt. Steinert

Except for my comments, this is the verbatim report on the what I believe was the first interrogation of Oblt. Steinert.

Interrogated on 18 June 1943

(Interview by Captain Hansen)

Not recorded

Veracity: rated good because P/W will refuse to answer a question but not attempt false or evasive replies. Moreover, he has an honest look about him. Is very security conscious as befits an officer.

He answered all the usual processing questions willingly and intelligently. As a professional officer he has no political affiliations but volunteered the information that he had been in the Hitler Jugend and in the arbeitsdienst. He knows both admirals von Doenitz and Raeder.

One wonders if this were translated correctly since it seems impossible that he would have known those two men in our sense of the word although it is certainly probable that he met them. Further, membership in the Hitler Youth would have been mandatory. Additionally, all German males were required to serve six months in the Reichsarbeitsdienst, or RAD – the State Labor Service. This program, like many other social welfare programs in the Third Reich, was actually started during the Weimar Republic. The Nazis just took credit for it.

I.O. suggests this man be approached in a friendly manner in future interrogations. He is tense, as the navy characterized him, and enters the interrogation room in a nervous frame of mind. He will respond to a conversational approach and might give us some of the information wanted by Army Anti-Submarine command. But hardly anything technical; for instance, he would not answer the I.O.’s question on extra towers on U-boots.

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website:

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