German Declaration of War on the United States

Joachim von Ribbentrop was Foreign Minister of Germany from 1938 to 1945. He signed the declaration of war against the United States on December 11,1941. He was charged as a war criminal at the Nuremberg Tribunal and hanged in 1946.

Chargé d’affaires! Ever since the British declaration of war on Germany of September 3, 1939 gave rise to the present European war, the United States have violated all rules of neutrality in an ever-increasingly flagrant manner to the benefit of Germany’s enemies, have continually engaged in severe provocation against Germany, and have now resorted to open acts of military aggression.

On September 11, 1941 the President of the United States publicly declared that he had ordered the American naval and air forces to fire at will on any German vehicle of war. In his address of October 27 of this year he expressly confirmed that this order is in force. Since the beginning of September of this year, in accordance with this order, American vehicles of war have systematically attacked German naval forces.

American destroyers, for example the “Greer”, the “Kearny” and the “Reuben James” have deliberately opened fire on German submarines. The Secretary of State for the American Navy, Mr. Knox, has personally confirmed that American destroyers have attacked German submarines. Furthermore, the American naval forces, acting on the order of their government, have treated German merchant ships on the open seas as enemy ships, and have captured them, in direct violation of the regulations of international law. Therefore, the government of the Reich wishes to stress: even though, in her actions with respect to the United States of America, Germany has adhered strictly to the rules of international law throughout the entire present war, the United States have ultimately progressed from initial breaches of neutrality to open acts of war against Germany. In doing so, they have in effect created a state of war [between the United States and the German Reich].

Consequently, the government of the Reich herewith breaks off diplomatic relations with the United States of America and declares that as of today, under these circumstances created by President Roosevelt, Germany as well considers herself to be at war with the United States of America.

December 11, 1941

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