Ian Kershaw, historian, on Adolf Hitler; Nazis who escaped justice; Nero Order; more on the Wannsee Conference

“Himmler himself was to claim explicitly in an internal, top-secret, letter to SS OBergruppenhurer Gottlob Berger, Chief of the SS Main Office, on 28 July 1942, that he was operating explicitly under Hitler’s authority: “The occupied Eastern territories are being made free of Jews. The Fuhrer has placed the implementation of this very difficult order on my shoulders.”p 715. Himmler had a statistical report, the Korherr Report, on the number of Jews ‘processed’ in the East, put together for Hitler. So the idea that he didn’t know is contrary to the evidence.

Ian Kershaw, p764
Hitler, bio
Goebbels’ summary of AH’s comments. May 12, 1943.
“From that results the Jewish danger. So there is nothing else open to modern peoples than to exterminate the Jews.”

Kershaw quotes figure of 437, 402 Hungarian Jews sent to Ausschwitz Birkenau.

On 4 June, Hitler paid a surprise visit…to Finland.

NEW: Quotes from Ian Kershaw’s book, “Hitler”, proving conclusively that Hitler knew about and ordered the Holocaust.

p 695. “As regards the Jews, Hans Frank said, “I’ll tell you quite openly: an end has to be made one way or another.'”
“Hitler said to Czech For Minister, Franzisek Chvalkovsky, 21 Jan 1939, “The Jews here will be annihilated,’ he declared. “The Jews had not brought about 89 Nov 1918 for nothing This day will be avenged.” [Vernichtung]”

from 24 Nov, Der Schwarze Corps; ‘The result would be the actual and final end of Jewry in Germany, its complete annihilation.’ p 468 –9

” “This criminal race has the two million dead of the First World War on its conscience”, he[ Adolf] went on, and ‘now again hundreds of thousands. Don’t anyone tell me we can’t send them into the marshes! Who bothers, then, about our people? It’s good when the horror precedss us that we are exterminating Jewry.’ ” p 692

Hitler’s Nero Order proves his viciousness.

This command is equivalent to all the contradictions in his thinking victory or destruction, because the enemy should receive a “scorched earth”. The future belonged, in his opinion, to the eastern nation, which had proved the stronger, while the Germans had forfeited its right to exist with the defeat.

He instructed his chief aide, SS Lieutenant leader *Julius Schaub, (see bottom of page) that all papers and documents were to removed from his private safe, and to do the same in Munich and at the Berghof. [160] Then they were to be burned.

*I wonder if he had any papers on the Holocaust burned?
Who supported Hitler early on? Who was Hugenberg?

Even more than the political parties and their voters, and social interest groups that supported Hitler, has the history of a relatively small group of conservative politicians too much importance to the transfer of state power to Hitler. Part of this “cabal” [65] called group – some together, sometimes against each other – tried to influence President Hindenburg included, among other things, his son Oskar von Hindenburg, Hitler’s previous chancellor Franz von Papen and Kurt von Schleicher and the DNVP Chairman Alfred Hugenberg. It urged Hindenburg within the meaning of various stakeholders including the Army, the old royalist elite, landowners east of the Elbe and part of the business community. The personal goals of the Camarilla members were different, sometimes contradictory. They were united, however, is to replace the democracy with an authoritarian form of government. Hitler and his party rejected it initially from a plebeian. But for their projects, they saw little popular support, so they went over to look at the Nazi Party or one of its wings as the necessary mass base and support. In the crisis year 1932, they tried to dispel the reservations of the Hindenburg 85 years against a force participation of the National Socialists.

from “Hitler, Adolf”, wikipedia.de
trans google

Alfred Hugenberg moved the party in a far more radical direction than it had taken under its previous leader, Kuno Graf von Westarp. He hoped to use radical nationalism to restore the party’s fortunes, and eventually, to overthrow the Weimar constitution and install an authoritarian form of government. Under Hugenberg’s leadership, the DNVP toned down and later abandoned the monarchism which had characterized the party in its earlier years. Controversy over Hugenberg’s radicalism led many of the more conservative party deputies to leave and form the Conservative People’s Party (KVP).

In the last years of the Weimar Republic, until the appointment of Adolf Hitler as Reichskanzler (Chancellor) in 1933, Hugenberg and the DNVP cooperated with the Nazis in their opposition to the cabinet of Heinrich Brüning and, to an extent, the Republic as a whole. However, in 1932 Hugenberg chose to support Franz von Papen. He became Minister for Economy, Agriculture and Food in Hitler’s first cabinet in 1933, while hoping that Hitler would not remain long in power.

In June 1933, he was forced to resign from his ministerial posts. In June 1933, Hitler was forced to disavow Hugenberg who while attending the London World Economic Conference put forth a programme of German colonial expansion in both Africa and Eastern Europe as the best way of ending the Great Depression, which created a major storm abroad[1]. Starting in late 1933, he was forced to sell his media companies to the Nazis. Hugenberg remained a member of the Reichstag.

After the war, Hugenberg was detained by the British. He died on 12 March 1951, near Rinteln.

Ian Kershaw, bio. on Adolf Hitler


Source: NY TIMES
The Devil’s Miracle Man
By Walter Reich
Published: January 31, 1999


1889-1936: Hubris.

By Ian Kershaw.

There has been a great deal of debate over the last decades about how much Hitler knew of the Holocaust. Revisionist historians like David Irving argue that there was no systematic, planned genocide of Jews, because there is no evidence that Hitler ever ordered such a thing. He believes that Jews were haphazardly killed by SS zealots beyond the Fuhrer’s control (there was no such thing), but by showing that nothing inside the Third Reich was beyond his control. If Nazi murder squads ran amok in Poland, Russia and the Ukraine, it was because Hitler allowed them to. He didn’t have to know all the details. Others could work out the methods: shooting, starving, gassing. Hitler’s people knew their enterprise was blessed by him. They murdered, and Hitler said it was good.

Kershaw has plenty of evidence for this. At the height of the Kristallnacht pogrom against Jews in 1938, Hitler told Joseph Goebbels to hold back the police. ”The Jews,” Goebbels quoted him as saying, ”should for once get to feel the anger of the people.” In a speech in 1939, Hitler ”prophesied” that another war would result in ”the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe.” When one or two Wehrmacht generals became a bit squeamish about the mass killing of Poles and Jews in 1940, Heinrich Himmler responded that he did ”nothing that the Fuhrer does not know about.” Around the turn of 1940-41, Hitler ordered his SS chiefs to come up with ”a final solution” to ”the Jewish question.” There were no gas chambers at that point, but whatever the means, the end was clear: there would be no more Jews left in Hitler’s Europe.

And here is what Hitler said to Goebbels in 1943, when the death camps were working at full throttle: ”In nature, life always works immediately against parasites; in the existence of peoples that is not exclusively the case. From that results the Jewish danger. So there is nothing else open to modern peoples than to exterminate the Jews.”

To say there is no document with Hitler’s express order to annihilate the Jews is to miss the point. The powers of every Nazi leader, from Himmler or Goebbels down to the lowliest party functionary, depended on Hitler. That is why the Third Reich was such a mess. For Hitler’s realm was less a properly functioning state than a cult run by criminals in the name of a godlike leader. Hitler’s men were, as Kershaw notes, ”working towards the Fuhrer.” They wanted to outdo one another in zeal just to please him. They knew he wanted to get rid of the Jews. They would do their worst to bring this about.

The Holocaust, as Kershaw describes it, in my view plausibly, was a process of escalating radicalism rather than the result of a single decision or worked-out plan. First the Jews had to be deported from Germany and Austria and crowded into Polish ghettos together with Polish Jews. When Hitler’s satraps in Poland complained of having too many Jews, plans were made to deport them to Siberia, or Madagascar, or wherever they would starve, freeze or rot to death. When that turned out to be impractical, German police units, SS killers, local thugs and soldiers of the Wehrmacht were unleashed to shoot, burn or club the Jews to death. When that turned out to be too stressful (for the killers), the gas chambers were put into operation.

There is no evidence that Hitler was an opportunist who used anti-Semitism as a tool of power. There is, on the contrary, every reason to assume that he believed the Jewish danger was real. This probably explains why he was always careful to avoid taking direct responsibility for the genocide, and never signed an order. If he had been a mere opportunist, he would have been proud to demonstrate his leadership in the killing. But Kershaw argues that it was precisely because he believed that the Jews posed a mortal threat that Hitler plumped for a peculiar kind of discretion. Somewhere in his sick mind, he was afraid that the ”Elders of Zion” were already plotting their revenge. This shows once again that true believers can be more dangerous than cynical operators. The latter might cut a deal; the former have to go to the end — and drag the world down with them.


I’ve added some extra material on the Wannsee Conference. I have another post on the W.Conference elsewhere. What follows pertains to those who attended, and a few other Nazis and the Holocaust.

It has been claimed that the Wannsee Conference decided on no more than the “evacuation” of the Jewish population of Europe to the east, with no reference to killing them.[20] In fact, Heydrich made the ultimate fate intended for the evacuees clear:

“Under proper guidance, in the course of the final solution the Jews are to be allocated for appropriate labor in the East. Able-bodied Jews, separated according to sex, will be taken in large work columns to these areas for work on roads, in the course of which action doubtless a large portion will be eliminated by natural causes. The possible final remnant will, since it will undoubtedly consist of the most resistant portion, have to be treated accordingly, because it is the product of natural selection and would, if released, act as the seed of a new Jewish revival”.[21]
source: wiki, wannsee conference

It was not until 1947 that a copy of the minutes (known from the German word for “minutes” as the “Wannsee Protocol”[36]) was found by Robert Kempner in the papers of Undersecretary Martin Luther, who had died in May 1945. There were, however, significant omissions in the minutes. These were not fully elucidated until the interrogation and trial of Eichmann in Israel in 1962. Eichmann told his questioners that towards the end of the meeting cognac was served, and that after that the conversation became less restrained.[37] “The gentlemen were standing together, or sitting together”, he said, “and were discussing the subject quite bluntly, quite differently from the language which I had to use later in the record. During the conversation they minced no words about it at all…they spoke about methods of killing, about liquidation, about extermination”.[31]

Eichmann recorded that Heydrich was pleased with the course of the meeting. He “gave expression to his great satisfaction”, and allowed himself a glass of cognac, although he rarely drank. He “had expected considerable stumbling blocks and difficulties”, Eichmann recalled, but instead he had found “an atmosphere not only of agreement on the part of the participants, but more than that, one could feel an agreement which had assumed a form which had not been expected”.[27] At the conclusion of the meeting Heydrich gave Eichmann firm instructions about what was to appear in the minutes. They were not to be verbatim: Eichmann would “clean them up” so that nothing too explicit appeared in them. He said at his trial: “How shall I put it—certain over-plain talk and jargon expressions had to be rendered into office language by me”. As a result, the last twenty minutes of the meeting, in which, as Eichmann recalled, words like “liquidation” and “extermination” were freely used, were summed up in one bland sentence: “In conclusion the different types of possible solutions were discussed”.[38] Thus the minutes must be read in conjunction with Eichmann’s testimony to get as near as is possible to a full account of what took place.

A year after his death, Martin Luther’s copy of the Wannsee Conference minutes was found by American investigators in the archives of the German Foreign Ministry. It is the only record of the conference that survived the war.

Eichmann’s biographer David Cesarani says that Heydrich’s main purpose was to impose his own authority on the various ministries and agencies involved in Jewish policy matters, to avoid any repetition of the disputes that had arisen over the killing of the German Jews at Riga in October.

(Hence it is clear that the Holocaust was ongoing already by the time of the Conference).
source: wiki, wannsee conference


Klopfer, d. 1987
asst. to Bormann

General Klopfer was never convicted of war crimes because of what officials said was a lack of evidence. Last Survivor of Meeting. Walked free.


Hitler left it to Heydrich to inform those attending that all remaining Jews would be used as slave labor, then systematically eliminated as the Nazis’ plans for conquering Europe progressed.

General Klopfer eventually moved to Neu Ulm in Bavaria, where he was given permission to resume practicing law in 1956.

Rudolf Lange, suicide or ‘disappeared’? No one knows. I checked three sources: axishistory, wikipedia.de, and wiki. Couldn’t find a persuasive answer.

Lange was one of the few people to be aware of the Führerbefehl or “fundamental orders” for the so-called “Jewish problem” in Latvia.[5] According to Lange himself: “ From the very beginning, the goal of EK2 was that radical solution of the Jewish problem by killing all Jews.[6]


Gerhard Maywald (1913-?) [SS-Obersturmführer] – joined NSDAP 1 May 1937; service, 30th Infantry Division 1939; training officer with the Criminal Police (Kriminalpolizei – Kripo) at Kiel; service, Action Group A (Einsatzgruppe A) Jul 1941-May 1942 {sentenced in a postwar proceeding 1960 (Field Men p. 87); arrested and put on trial by a West German court at Hamburg on charges of murder and complicity in murder of over 8,000 Jews deported to Latvia; convicted of complicity in the death of 320 persons by selecting them for execution and sentenced to 4 years imprisonment 2 Aug 1977 (NYT 3 Aug 1977:5:1); probably identifiable with “May., Gerhard Kurt” — service, Action Group A (EG A) {arrested and put on trial by a West German court at Hamburg on charges of complicity in selecting for execution out of the Riga ghetto numerous Austrian Jews from Vienna and German Jews from Berlin for death in mass shootings, complicity in the shooting of at least 2,000 Jews who were unfit for slave labor at Riga and in the shooting of at least another 4,000 Jews who were unfit for slave labor at concentration camp (Konzentrationslager – KL) Gut Jungfernhof (Jumpravas Muiza), as well as individual shootings of German, Austrian and Latvian Jews at (Arbeitserziehungslager – AEL) Salaspils, on 2 Jan 1942, 30 Jan 1942, 5 Feb 1942 and in Mar 1942; convicted and sentenced to 4 years imprisonment 2 Aug 1977 (JuNSV Verfahren Lfd.Nr.843; LG Hamburg 770802).}
Presumed dead.
Erich Ehrlinger
This bastard died only in 2004~ Why was he still walking around?

He was responsible for mass murder in the Baltic states and Belarus.

For example, on 16 July 1941, the SD entered Dünaburg. Ehrlinger reported that “[a]s of now the EK 1b has killed 1,150 Jews in Dünaburg.”[1] Ehrlinger himself oversaw these shootings, euphemistically called “actions”, as a “hardened SS perpetrator who stood at the shoot pit and led the killers in the shooting.”[2]

In December 1941, after the completion of the work of Einsatzkommando 1b, Ehrlinger was promoted to commandant of the Security Police and SD (Kommandeur der Sicherheitspolize und des SD or KdS) for central Russia and Belarus, where under his orders many executions were carried out. During shootings, when he felt the pace was lagging, he personally picked up a weapon and started killing people.

In December 1958, he was arrested. Two years later he was sentenced by the State Court of Karlsruhe (Landsgericht Karlsruhe) to twelve years imprisonment. The case was appealed and eventually returned to the public prosecutor’s office. Due to his “disability”,[clarification needed] his sentence was officially remitted in 1969, four years after he was released from prison.
**This Nazi Killer was walking around free from 1965 to 2004.—-

Georg Leibbrandt
free as a bird
d. 1982

In January 1950, he was formally charged with involvement in the destruction of Jews, by the Nuremberg Landgericht. The case against him was dismissed on August 10, 1950 and he was released from custody.

In the post-war period, he returned to America and resumed his earlier studies on the subject of the Russian Germans, making expert contributions to the Association of Germans from Russia (the Landsmannschaft der Deutschen aus Russland, which might be literally translated as the “Cultural Association of Germans from Russia”) until his death in Bonn on June 16, 1982.

More nazis:
Former co-worker Bernhard Lösener from Interior Ministry testified that Stuckart had been aware of the murder of the Jews even before the Wannsee Conference.[12] Stuckart’s defence argued that his support for the forced sterilization of mischlings was in order to prevent or delay even more drastic measures.[12] The court was unable to resolve the question, and sentenced him as time served in April 1949.[12]

After being released from captivity, Stuckart went to work as city treasurer in Helmstedt and then as the manager of the Institute for the Promotion of Economy in Lower Saxony.[12] In 1951 we was tried in a de-Nazification court, classified as a “fellow traveler” (Mitläufer) and fined for five hundred marks.[12]

Stuckart was killed on November 15, 1953 near Hanover, West Germany in a car accident (maybe by Mossad).

Franz Rademacher, SS
d 1973., fled to Syria
In October 1941, he was responsible for mass deportations and executions of Serbian Jews (Yugoslavia). He also had a hand in the deportation of Jews from France, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

He was eventually brought to trial in Germany in February 1952 for the murders he supervised in Serbia. However, with the aid of Nazi sympathizers, he fled to Syria in September of that year while released on bail. A German court convicted him in absentia for the murder of Serbian Jews, and sentenced him to 3 years and 5 months imprisonment.

In 2010, the German Foreign Ministry released an 880-page report on the diplomats of the Third Reich entitled “The Ministry and the Past,” alleging Rademacher visited Belgrade in 1941, filing an expense claim that the official purpose of the trip was to “liquidate the Jews.”[1]

In 1962 Jewish spy Eli Cohen delivers an explosive letter to Rademacher in a failed assassination attempt.

In 1963, he was arrested in Syria on charges of spying, but was released in 1965 due to ill health. He returned to Germany in 1966, where he was again convicted of war crimes and sentenced to five and half years’ imprisonment. However, his sentence was never carried out, the court having considered it already served.

In 1971, a German high court in Karlsruhe overruled this judgment against Rademacher, and ordered a new trial for his crimes during World War II. He died on March 17, 1973, before proceedings began.
Free from 1966-73.


CIA inaction on Adolf Eichmann

In June 2006, old CIA documents about Nazis and stay-behind networks dedicated to anti-communism were released. Among the 27,000 documents was a March 1958 memo from the German BND agency to the CIA, which stated that Eichmann was reported to have lived in Argentina since 1952 using the alias “Clemens”. However, the CIA took no action on this information, because Eichmann’s arrest could embarrass the US and Germany by turning public attention to the former Nazis they had recruited after World War II.[16] For example, the West German government, headed by Konrad Adenauer, was worried about what Eichmann might say, especially about the past of Hans Globke, Adenauer’s national security adviser, who had worked with Eichmann in the Jewish Affairs department and helped draft the 1935 Nuremberg Laws.[17][16][18]

At the request of the West German government the CIA persuaded Life magazine to delete any reference to *Globke from Eichmann’s memoirs, which it had bought from his family.[19] By the time the CIA and the BND had this information, Israel had temporarily given up looking for Eichmann in Argentina because they could not discover his alias.[19] Neither the CIA nor the US government as a whole at that time had a policy of pursuing Nazi war criminals.[16] In addition to protecting Eichmann and Globke, the CIA also protected Reinhard Gehlen,[20] who recruited hundreds of former German spies for the CIA. The low key attitude toward Nazi war criminals, and more concentration on the Soviet Union even possibly allowed Eichmann to be a member of a private American golf club and travel freely without being discovered.

One key witness for the prosecution was an American judge named Michael A. Musmanno, who was a U.S. naval officer in 1945. Musmanno had questioned the Nuremberg defendants and would later go on to become a Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. He testified that the late *Hermann Göring “made it very clear that Eichmann was the man to determine, in what order, in what countries, the Jews were to die.”

Eichmann, speaking in his own defense, said that he did not dispute the facts of what happened during the Holocaust. During the whole trial, Eichmann insisted that he was only “following orders”—the same Nuremberg Defense used by some of the Nazi war criminals during the 1945–1946 Nuremberg Trials. He explicitly declared that he had abdicated his conscience in order to follow the Führerprinzip. Eichmann claimed that he was merely a “transmitter” with very little power. He testified that: “I never did anything, great or small, without obtaining in advance express instructions from Adolf Hitler or any of my superiors.”

During cross-examination, prosecutor Hausner asked Eichmann if he considered himself guilty of the murder of millions of Jews. Eichmann replied: “Legally not, but in the human sense … yes, for I am guilty of having deported them”. When Hausner produced as evidence a quote by Eichmann in 1945 stating: “I will leap into my grave laughing because the feeling that I have five million human beings on my conscience is for me a source of extraordinary satisfaction.” Eichmann countered the claim saying that he was referring only to “enemies of the Reich”.[33]

Witnesses for the defense, all of them former high-ranking Nazis, were promised immunity and safe conduct from their German and Austrian homes to testify in Jerusalem on Eichmann’s behalf.[citation needed] All of them refused to travel to Israel, but they sent the court depositions. None of the depositions supported Eichmann’s “following orders” defense. One deposition was from **Otto Winkelmann, a former senior SS police leader in Budapest in 1944. His memo stated that “(Eichmann) had the nature of a subaltern, which means a fellow who uses his power recklessly, without moral restraints. He would certainly overstep his authority if he thought he was acting in the spirit of his commander [Adolf Hitler]”. **Franz Six, a former SS brigadier general in the German secret service, who was assigned the supervision of the occupation of the United Kingdom had Operation Sea Lion been successful, said in his deposition that Eichmann was an absolute believer in National Socialism and would act to the most extreme of the party doctrine, and that Eichmann had greater power than other department chiefs.

After 14 weeks of testimony with more than 1,500 documents, 100 prosecution witnesses (90 of whom were Nazi concentration camp survivors) and dozens of defense depositions delivered by diplomatic couriers from 16 different countries, the Eichmann trial ended on August 14. At that point, the judges began deliberations in seclusion. On December 11, the three judges announced their verdict: Eichmann was convicted on all counts. Eichmann had said to the court that he expected the death penalty.[34] On December 15, the court imposed a death sentence. Eichmann appealed the verdict, mostly relying on legal arguments about Israel’s jurisdiction and the legality of the laws under which he was charged. He also claimed that he was protected by the principle of “Acts of State” and repeated his “following orders” defense.

On May 29, 1962 Israel’s Supreme Court, sitting as a Court of Criminal Appeal, rejected the appeal.
source: wikipedia, wannsee conference

*Franz Six : what became of him? Six was probably given some kind of immunity for testifying against Eichmann; still he was a war criminal.
Also, * Kurt Krause, *Max Gymich. Couldn’t find anything on them.

^ The minutes of the Wannsee Conference estimate the Jewish population of the Soviet Union as five million, including nearly three million in the Ukraine and 900,000 in Byelorussia.

^ This figure includes, however, the entire estimated five million Soviet Jews. In fact a large number of these either lived in areas not under German control or had been evacuated already. It is likely that about three million Soviet Jews were actually in German-occupied areas in 1942, although many had already been killed by the Einsatzgruppen. The figure of 700,000 Jews in “unoccupied France” included Jews living in the French territories of Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia.

Göring and his subordinates made persistent efforts to prevent skilled Jewish workers, whose labour was an important part of the war effort, being deported and killed. But by 1943 Himmler was a much more powerful figure in the regime than Göring, and eventually all categories of skilled Jews lost their exemptions. This is discussed by Tooze, The Wages of Destruction, 522–29.

In 1965, historian Joseph Wulf tried to have the Wannsee House made into a Holocaust memorial and document center. But the Berlin Senate did not want Holocaust Memorials and spurned Joseph Wulf.
Minutes of the Wannsee Conference

The evacuated Jews will first be sent, group by group, to so-called transit ghettos, from which they will be transported to the East.

SS-Obergruppenführer Heydrich went on to say that an important prerequisite for the evacuation as such is the exact definition of the persons involved.
my note:
“Transferred to the East” and “resettlement” and “evacuation”, in this context mean the mass murder of the Jews.

State Secretary Dr. Bühler stated further that the solution to the Jewish question in the General Government is the responsibility of the Chief of the Security Police and the SD and that his efforts would be supported by the officials of the General Government. He had only one request, to solve the Jewish question in this area as quickly as possible.

The Nazis’ own statistics on “Jews” including half and Quarter Jews:

USSR 5,000,000
Ukraine 2,994,684
White Russia
excluding Bialystok 446,484

Estonia – free of Jews –
Latvia 3,500
Lithuania 34,000


Note, it says that Estonia is “Free of Jews.” Where are the Jews of Estonia? Where are the Jews of Latvia and Lithuania, when we know that there were much more of them living in the Baltics than Heydrich shows us there were? Where were they ‘resettled to’?


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19 Responses to “Ian Kershaw, historian, on Adolf Hitler; Nazis who escaped justice; Nero Order; more on the Wannsee Conference”

  1. Throes of Democracy North Capitol Street Says:

    […] Ian Kershaw, historian, on Adolf Hitler « Paolosilv's Blog […]

  2. Promotion Complete » Blog Archive » The Nazis: Chaos and Consent 1 of 5 Says:

    […] Ian Kershaw, historian, upon Adolf Hitler « Paolosilv's Blog […]

  3. anotheroklahomarose Says:

    As a Jewess this not only frightens me, as I have lived with this in America for 56 years, but it hurts so bad!! To the core and beyond. Some of the documents you have I have never heard of or seen. Thank you, Paolo.

  4. jlue Says:

    My first thought when I read what the “deniers” write is , “Why?” Why do these people want to give Hitler a pass and a good name when the truth is so obvious? The “deniers” are passionate and angry and are able to overlook so much. It is beyond my ability to comprehend. I agree with anotheroklahomarose that it is frightening.

  5. paolosilv Says:

    Use in Hungary (1944-1945) [edit]
    On 19 March 1944, Hungary was occupied by German troops. With the adoption of 19 guides March 1944, Hitler appointed German ambassador to Hungary, Edmund Veesenmayer, the “representative of the Greater German Reich (Reich Agent) and Otto Winkelmann to the Higher SS and Police Leader (HSSPF) of Hungary. [9]

    “Civilian German authorities of any kind to operate in Hungary are only in agreement with the Reich plenipotentiary to set up, it must be subordinate to and carry out their activities in accordance with his instructions. For those with German forces in Hungary to be carried out tasks of the SS and police, particularly for police duties with regard to the Jewish question occurs to the staff of the Reich plenipotentiary a Higher SS and Police Leaders, who acts according to his political instructions. ”

    – Guide Decree of 19 March 1944 [9]

    The duty ratio of Winkelmann and Veesenmayer – be placed by Winkelmann under Veesenmayer or equal cooperation for various aspects of the German occupation – was controversial during the joint service in Hungary and it became a competition which is for the personal enmity between the two sprouted. The hostility is likely to continue during the legal fight after the war, both stressed each other hard and shrank from no lies. “[10]

    Winkelmann was the immediate superior of SS Colonel Hans-Ulrich Geschke, who led Hungary into the security police and security service, and chose to kick off the deportation of Hungarian Jews, 200 people with Jewish-sounding names from the phone book and was arrested. Geschke was again formally under the Special Operations Command Eichmann, which operated the deportation of Hungarian Jews to death camps. Although the special task force was subject to in a direct line Winkelmann, was Adolf Eichmann, his instructions in property questions directly from Kaltenbrunner and trash from the Reich Security Main Office. [11] This situation was later during the legal fight against the Nazi action in the Federal Republic of main defense strategy Winkelmann and Veesenmayer to deny their own complicity in the Holocaust of Hungarian Jews.

    Winkelmann was instrumental in the dismissal of head of state of Hungary Miklós Horthy. After the interim military government of Prime Minister Géza Lakatos had stopped in late August 1944, the deportation of Hungarian Jews, hijacked the German commando “bazooka”, led by since August 1944 in Hungary present Otto Skorzeny on 15 October 1944 Horthy Miklós Horthy, Jr., son of the same (1907-1993) to overthrow Lakatos. Horthy was then on the radio from a cease-fire declaration for Hungary, which he on 16 October was arrested by Skorzeny. On the initiative of Winkelmann’s finally, the Arrow Cross Ferenc Szálasi the new head of state in Hungary [12].

    On 1 December 1944, Hitler declared by command Budapest a fortress, the city commandant, he appointed SS General Guide Winkelmann. This came under the Winkelmann IX. SS Mountain Corps under the command of pepper-game break, and the III. Panzer Corps of the Army. After just four days – on 5 December 1944 – Winkelmann was forced to resign as a police captain because he had recommended to the task of the Pest bridgehead, which Hitler refused to strictly. New police captain was pepper-game break, which was to hold that post in the coming battle for Budapest. [13]

    Postwar period and judicial follow-up (1945-1977) [edit]
    Winkelmann came on 1 May 1945 in American captivity, from which he 27 was transferred to Hungary in October 1945. From there, the Hungarian public prosecutor had requested him as a witness for the Nazi trials of Ferenc Szalasi, Emil Kovarcz, Béla Imredy and Franz Basch. On 10 April 1946 introduced the Hungarian Justice Minister Major-General William S. Key, the highest U.S. officials in the Allied Control Commission for Hungary, the request for extradition of Veesenmayer and Winkelmann in order to make this as a war criminal process in Hungary. The application gave the U.S. authorities not to, but continued in September 1948, the return of Winkelmann’s to Germany, where he ‘was released [6].

    . After his return to Germany Winkelmann took his residence in his hometown Bordesholm [2] For the CDU Winkelmann, in April 1955 in the council – elected – the local parliament of Kiel. He was a direct candidate in constituency 26, and as a member of the Kiel block (CDU, FDP, and SHB GB / BHE), a member of several committees of the council. In early 1958 Winkelmann moved from Kiel to the suburb Schulensee, and separated it in February 1958 than before the end of its term councilman. [14] In May 1961, Winkler was questioned in Germany as a witness in the Eichmann trial. [15] 1961 went Winkelmann as “police chief” retired. [6] With regard to deportation and murder of Hungarian Jews Winkelmann was composed of 1,800 business leaders, politicians and senior officials of the Federal Republic in 1968 listed by the GDR for propaganda purposes Braun published book [16].

    Literature [Edit]
    Ernst Klee: The Encyclopedia of People to the Third Reich. Fischer, Frankfurt am Main 2007th ISBN 978-3-596-16048-8. (Updated 2nd Edition)
    Ruth Bettina Birn: The Higher SS and Police Leader. Himmler’s representative in the Reich and the occupied territories. Droste Verlag, Düsseldorf, 1986. ISBN 3-7700-0710-7
    Links [Edit]
    Commons: Otto Winkelmann – collection of images, videos and audio files
    Individual certificates [Edit]
    ↑ Randolph L. Braham: The National Trials Relating to the Holocaust in Hungary. In: Larry V. Thompson (Editor): Lessons and Legacies, Volume IV Northwestern University Press, Evanston (IL) 2003, p. 150 ISBN 0810119900th

  6. paolosilv Says:

    ‘Orders to shoot’


    The Austrian justice ministry said the former guard, 83-year-old Josias Kumpf, could not be put on trial because the statute of limitations had expired.

    The justice ministry also said Mr Kumpf had been a teenager at the time of the alleged offences and had never been an Austrian citizen.

    The opposition Greens have called on the government to amend the law to allow for the prosecution of alleged Nazi war criminals regardless of the time elapsed.


    A former German infantry commander has been jailed for life for his role in the killing of 14 civilians in an Italian village during World War II.

  7. paolosilv Says:

    Hitler “not a brave soldier.”

    “I found that his role was to deliver messages between regimental HQ and, for instance, battalions or the HQs of other units, and not companies, as has previously been stated – so he would have been between three and five kilometres behind the front line.”

    (Dr. Thomas Weber) Hitler’s First War will be available from 16 September.

  8. paolosilv Says:

    Liebehenschel’s daughter. He was one of the Commandants of Auschwitz I.

    A German who worked with Liebehenschel at Auschwitz testified at his trial that the kommandant once travelled to Berlin to attempt to prevent up to 500 prisoners being gassed.

    Several former prisoners of Auschwitz also gave evidence for the defence, saying he had improved certain conditions at the camp.

    so he was given a lower-level position in the SS administration

    He didn’t want to go to Auschwitz. He was sent there as a punishment,” she says.

    Liebehenschel still participated in genocide and countless innocent people were sent to their deaths during his time there.

    (His daughter)does not believe his claim that he did not know about the gas chambers at Auschwitz prior to his arrival at the camp.

  9. paolosilv Says:


    Wagner, after confessing on television to his participation in the productionline murder of at least 250,000 Jews within just 15 months in 1942 and 1943, had slashed his wrists and bled to death, preventing justice from taking its course.

  10. paolosilv Says:
    ——————————————————————————– adolf hitler, german wikipedia ——————————————————————————– German to English translation Adolf Hitler (April 20, 1889 in Braunau am Inn, Austria-Hungary, † 30 April 1945 in Berlin) was a German politician and dictator of Austrian origin. He was chairman of the NSDAP in 1921, from 30 January 1933 and chancellor from 1934 until his suicide as the “Fuehrer and Reich Chancellor” while Prime Minister and head of state of the German Empire. In Hitler’s reign established the Nazi dictatorship of the so-called Third Reich. During the year 1933, all other parties banned or forced to disband. The regime persecuted political opponents to imprisonment in concentration camps, isolation, torture and murder. It operated the systematic disenfranchisement and mass murder of European Jews and other religious, ethnic and social groups. The policy under Hitler’s leadership was destroyed in the cause for the outbreak of the Second World War, [1] through much of Europe and millions of people were killed. Biography Adolf Hitler have a toddler almost all Hitler biographers point to the huge discrepancy between its first and second half of life. Up to his 30th Age he was, by the bourgeois standards of his time, not successful because he had neither training nor significant social ties. After that, Hitler swung to within a few years, the German Chancellor and finally to the dictatorial ruler of much of Europe. Early years To his home and his life before entering politics Hitler was always a mystery. “Know you are not allowed,” he said in 1930 about his political opponents, “where I come from and of what family I come from.” [2] Döllersheim and Strones, the home villages of his parents and grandparents, he was in the summer of 1938, just after the Anschluss evacuate to have to create a military training area (now the military training area Allentsteig) suggests [3] Krockow, Kershaw and other biographers of Hitler, that the reasons are to be sought in its unsettled and** incest is not free origin. Hitler’s own statements in Mein Kampf to his early years were mainly self-stylization of the ideal Nazi fighters, went much beyond what was already known at that time anyway, and are therefore less trustworthy. [4] Home → Main article: Hitler family Mother: Klara Hitler (1860-1907) Father: Alois Hitler (1837-1903) Hitler’s family came from the Lower Austrian Waldviertel on the border of Bohemia [5] In the 19th. Century, the then fluctuated in Austria is not unusual name of the family or between Hüttler, Hiedler, Hittler and Hitler. Going back to Franz Jetzinger assertion that the name is related to the Czech and Hidlar Hidlarcek, [6] was taken up again in the literature, [7] is rejected by more recent research. Most likely is that to derive the various name variants that differ in the dialectal pronunciation phonetically barely, from hut, the name thus means as much as small farmers or cottagers. [8] The name researcher Jürgen Udolph assumes, however, the original name of Adolf Hitler’s grandfather, Hiedler, are derived from the dialect term Hiedl (name for an underground water vein) from [9]. The late dictator was on 20 April 1889 in the Upper Austrian town of Braunau am Inn was born. He was the fourth of six children of Alois Hitler and customs officers whose third wife Klara (born Pölzl). The father was born under the name of Alois Schicklgruber, the illegitimate son of Anna Maria and Johann Georg Hiedler Schicklgruber, the absence of later marriage. Alois Schicklgruber adopted as a 39-year-old named Hitler. Adolf’s mother Klara (born Pölzl) was the daughter of Johann Nepomuk Hiedler oldest daughter Joan and her husband Johann Baptist Hiedler Pölzl. Hitler’s parents were uncle and niece of the second degree (see pedigree) [10]. The three older siblings died in childhood of Adolf Hitler, even before Adolf’s birth, of the six children of a Catholic couple reached only Adolf and his sister Paula, the school age. The two older children from the father’s second marriage, Alois Jr. and Angela have also grown up in the household, her mother had died. In Mein Kampf Hitler describes his father as a strict, authoritarian, sometimes hot-tempered and violent. Pedigree hitler hitler was beneficial to his father that he had his surname to Hitler can be changed. [11] This happened, however, until 1876, 29 years after the death of the mother and probably at a the contemplated inheritance of his uncle and foster father Johann Nepomuk Hiedler (1807 -1888). He confirmed before the parish priest of Döllersheim, be 15 years older, was already deceased brother, Johann Georg Müller servant Hiedler was Alois’ father and was brought in for three witnesses. As Johann Georg Hiedler Anna Schicklgruber had married later, was ready the priest to change Alois’ birth records of “illegitimate” in “marriage.” [12] Given this initiative has been speculation in the research and a possible paternity Johann Nepomuk Hiedler, [13] after this same paternal grandfather and great-grandfather would be mother of Adolf Hitler, but for which there is no evidence [14]. Although there is no reason to believe that Adolf Hitler was Johann Georg Hiedler doubted as a grandfather, [15] had to not be politically sensitive, with complete security clarified derivation for the propagandists of a racist ideology, as he known since the early 1920s was. Political opponents were even then trying to prove again that the leader of the anti-Semitic and extreme nationalist NSDAP itself had Jewish or Czech ancestors. Since the mid-1920s there were rumors of a supposed Jewish ancestry of Hitler. Hans Frank took them on in the Nuremberg trials and in his autobiography [16] as saying that Hitler’s grandmother was with his father Alois became pregnant when she was working as a maid in the household of a Jew named Frankenberger in Graz. The literature relating to Frank spread further this claim, [17] has been convincingly refuted by them. [18]*** Hitler had such rumors and the sometimes incestuous relationships in his family reason to conceal its origin. Childhood and Youth Memorial stone in front of the house where Hitler because of his work often went to Alois Hitler and his family: first from Braunau to Passau, and then later to Lambach to Leonding near Linz. Psychoanalysts such as Arno Gruen assume that Hitler was influenced by his relationship with his father violence. His mother, however he had been “deified.” As his three older siblings had died shortly before his birth, was the mother always feared to lose their fourth child [19] This tension has had a formative influence on Hitler’s personality development. The mother had not the Son before the punishment of the Father to protect him but, balancing, and thus worships used in a power play against the father. The child had experienced the mother as weak and contemptible, like his father had carried her. At the same time the son had wanted to protect the mother against the father. This situation has plunged the child into internal conflicts, where there was only through alienation from himself and his needs can not avoid. Through this alienation is only a weak identity have developed. The emptiness was transferred by violent fantasies and patch poses. [20] In addition to editing this interpretation, many different possible psychological works of Hitler’s mental illness. On the different elementary schools, Adolf Hitler attended, he was a good student in high school in Linz he failed completely, however. Already the first year there, 1900/1901, he had to repeat, and his teacher he certified “lack of desire to work.” In particular, he disliked the religious education teacher at the Franz Sales Black. At the Realschule in Linz enthusiastic about students, including Hitler, for the theories of Georg Schonerer, they greeted each other with “Heil!” Call-and corn-flowers pinned to the lapel. The third class graduated in 1904 from where Hitler with such poor grades that his transfer was threatened. The school offered to Hitler’s mother to put him yet, but only on condition that he changed schools. Therefore, since Hitler visited the school in Steyr, which was less demanding than. But even there did not improve his performance. He remained seated, not managed the retake and left the school from pain, lazy and moody fastidiousness summarily “[21] at age sixteen, in the fall of 1905, without any qualifications. Hitler introduced it later appears as a kind of learning strike against the father, who had a civil service want to push, even as he sought the job of art painter. This phrase means that Hitler as a misunderstood artist saw his life, [22] with regular work is not coped, and also belonged to his egocentricity most prominent properties. [23] speaks against Hitler’s view, however, that his father on 3 January, died in 1903 when Adolf was 13 years old. The parent or pressure subsided without its benefits were better. More than one from different sources in random read half formation Hitler has not acquired later. Years in Vienna and Munich From 1903, Hitler moved half orphans, and with the support of his mother, he was financially independent from 1905. As of September 1907 Hitler lived in Vienna in May 1913, he moved to Munich. Hitler’s life during this period can be reconstructed only partially. For the years before World War II, very few sources are available. In particular, there are few statements of eye witnesses. The historiography is mainly based on the representations from August Kubizek, Reinhold Hanisch, Karl Honisch and designated as “Brno anonymous” witnesses. For the time in Munich will make use primarily on Hitler’s landlord Josef Popp. Hitler’s companion at this time, the Viennese who died in 1973 Rudolf Häusler is, however, has never been scientifically surveyed [24]. In September 1907 he traveled to Vienna and underwent at the Universal School of Painters of the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts along with other 112 candidates in the entrance examination. Brought by his workbook he qualified sample drawing as 79 more candidates to participate at the second in the competition on 1 and 2 October. Only 28 passed the test. The remaining candidates, including Hitler and Robin Christian Andersen were not admitted. He remained in Vienna. On 24 October told the Jewish doctor Eduard Bloch family, the mother was terminally ill and did not live very long. Adolf returned to Linz, before his mother on 21 December 1907 died of breast cancer. After her death, he distanced himself further from his relatives. Suggest different than the descriptions of his youth in Mein Kampf, Hitler was able to live from his orphan’s pension initially relatively well. His income, be improved further by the sale itself was painted pictures and postcards, with the starting salary of a teacher. The letter of recommendation of a friend of the renowned stage designer Alfred Roller, who agreed to a reception of Hitler, led ultimately to nothing. In the fall of 1908 he could no longer qualify for his second job at the art academy for drawing sample. Then he tried hard to take a job or even a trainee position in attack. In Vienna, he came up with the writings of the race ideologist and anti-Semites Guido von List and Jörg Lanz von love of his student rock in contact. Liebenfels is a biography of the depth psychologist Wilfried Daim called “the man who was Hitler’s ideas.” In the history of science, however, the influence of Lanz’s writings on Hitler had more than evaluated low, [25] are primarily the effects of Lists and other “world commentators. Significant extent, the “World Ice” by Hanns Hoerbiger and the ideas Hans gold trim. [26] was also anti-Semitic polemics from politicians such as George of beautiful, the leader of the Pan-German movement, and the mayor Karl Lueger on it [27]. Hitler’s idea of a superior Aryan master race should have known at that time formed his models, he had but never mentioned. More than politics, Hitler was interested, according to his former friend August Kubizek for opera, especially for Richard Wagner. After the second rejection by the board of the Academy of Arts, Hitler gradually went out of money. He also had to fear being conscripted into the military. After Hitler in July 1909 by his former roommate August Kubizek had separated, he moved several times his accommodation. . The leased in the following period rooms were further and further from the city center, which is considered by some sources as evidence of Hitler’s increasing financial difficulties [28] The last proven by registration form accommodation Hitler in 1909 was in the six-Strasse in Vienna, where Hitler had rented for a period of about three weeks a room. For the following three months of Hitler’s residence is unknown, it is from this time, no registration forms, could shed light on Hitler’s residence. It is concluded in many sources, that Hitler was homeless for several months in the fall of 1909 and the homeless shelter in Meidling sought refuge. [29] whether Hitler was actually homeless, however, is not ultimately guaranteed. [30] In early 1910, Hitler moved into the men’s dormitory in the Meldemannstrasse. As a painter of Vienna’s attractions, he found a modest living. **Hitler painting and drawing in Vienna by mid-1910 a number of small paintings. Since he was more afraid of contact itself, took on a roommate, Reinhold Hanisch, selling his paintings. Because he had been cheated in a business Hanisch felt he was selling a Jewish roommate named Siegfried Löffner. In August 1910, was shown by Hanisch Löffner for alleged misappropriation of a Hitler-image at the Vienna police. As on that occasion turned out that Hanif was registered in Vienna under the false name of Fritz Walter, he was on 11 August 1910 sentenced to a prison sentence of seven days. As part of police investigations on this process was Hitler on 5 August 1910 for the record: “I know (Reinhold Hanisch) of asylum in Meidling, where I met him once” [31] In many cases, a confirmation of that claim Hitler seen to have temporarily lived in the homeless shelter of Meidling [32].. 1912 Hitler in turn was shown by an anonymous person because of the unauthorized use of title of an “academic painter” to the police and warned to use that title no longer in the future. In research, it is assumed that the painter Karl suffering Roth, a friend Hanisch, which filed a complaint on his behalf in order to retaliate for the ad from 1910. [33] After Hitler limited his artistic activity. Remarkably, he worked in the trade in his paintings together with many other Jews, the Hungarian men’s hostel residents Josef Neumann, who acted as his salesman, as well as the merchants Jakob Altenberg and Samuel Morgan. *It is therefore questionable whether Hitler’s anti-Semitism at that time was so strong already, as he claimed in Mein Kampf. The historian Werner Maser and Joachim went hard from the fact that arrest Hitler had Hanisch 30 years later in 1938 – or found him arrested after the invasion of Austria already -. In order to murder him, then in Buchenwald concentration camp [34] More likely, however, that Hanisch on 4 Died in February 1937 during his stay in Vienna Inquisitenspital of a heart attack. Brigitte Hamann supported by intensive research on Hitler’s time in Vienna is not only a report of the examining physician at the Vienna court death to light absorption, but also a letter from Hitler’s Vienna envoy Franz Feiler of 11 May 1938, in which Feiler his confidant in the Nazi Party’s main archive Ernst told Schulte-Strathaus, Hanisch was “dead for 1.5 years.” [35] After Hitler in May 1913, the legacy of his father had been paid, he withdrew from the men’s hostel in Vienna to Munich, where he attended the Schneider Josef Popp in the Maxvorstadt to sublet. The move was also intended to avoid military service in Austria. In Mein Kampf he wrote later that he had longed for a “German town”. Here he read the writings of Houston Stewart Chamberlain’s racist. Hitler painted in Munich continue to watercolors and occasional oil paintings, mostly architectural illustrations from photographs. He sold the work primarily at the art dealer on stuffler Maximiliansplatz. Hitler’s companions in that period, the Vienna Rudolf Häusler, who had traveled with him from Vienna to Munich and here – in a similar position as ten years before August Kubizek – the room told him. After a long search by the Austrian police and screening at the Austrian Consulate in Munich, Munich, officials from the judicial police on 19 Hitler went on 5 January 1914 February 1914 to survey to Salzburg. There he was judged incompetent and weapons from military service in Austria, has been postponed. That he did not go in principle to military service out of the way, he showed as a volunteer in the First World War. In the First World War The 25-year-old Hitler enthusiastically welcomed the outbreak of war in 1914. A photograph shows him in the midst of Heinrich Hoffmann’s mass demonstration on 2 August 1914 at the Odeon Square. This photograph was later distributed en masse. Hitler was on 16 August 1914 as a volunteer in the Bavarian army. There the Austrians on 8 October 1914 on the King of Bavaria, and then sworn in to the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph. As a soldier of the 16th Kgl. Bay. Reserve Infantry Regiment (6th Royal Bavarian Reserve Division), he spent almost the entire war period as a runner on the Western Front. Kershaw assesses participation in the First World War to Hitler’s later life as a little überschätzbar: “The war and the consequences of Hitler have created.” [36] Hitler (far right) as a soldier in 1915Nach his participation in the First Battle of Ypres Hitler received on 3 Backdated to 1 November November 1914 was promoted to corporal. On 2 December of that year he was awarded the Iron Cross, Second Class. The spontaneous Christmas Peace 1914, he disapproved. Hitler left several letters from the front, from which the 5th February 1915 the most important. After a detailed description of the fighting in the end he expresses his hope for a final settlement with the enemies inside. [37] The theory that Hitler had been a soldier since 1916 an affair with Frenchwoman Charlotte Eudoxie Alida Lobjoie from which was then Jean Loret emerged as the illegitimate son, throughout the research as rather unlikely, it is essentially only represented by Werner Maser. Since 26 September 1916 he participated in the Battle of the Somme. At Le Bargur Hitler on 5 October 1916 (according to own data on October 7) in the left thigh wounded, as messengers of the dugout exploded a grenade. He was sent on 9 October to 4 December in the club Beelitz hospital, where his first time back in Germany, was aware that the mood had vanished long ago in 1914. Only in March 1917, he came back to the front and took part in the summer of the Third Battle of Ypres, after which he the Military Merit Cross III. Class with swords received. After a furlough in October 1917, which he spent in Berlin, he was involved in late March 1918 the German spring offensive. In May he received a diploma Regiment for outstanding bravery and the Wound Badge in black, on 4 August he was awarded at the initiative of the Jewish regiment adjutant Hugo Gutmann with the Iron Cross First Class. Hitler was considered a proper soldier, who had the next-mates in general, good relations, although he was reclusive from the rest of the group secreted. Against the officers he was more attuned uncritical “respect the boss, anyone disagree, add to blindly”, so he described himself his former position during the Putschistenprozesses in 1924. His outsider’s role is illustrated by a statement of a regiment that Hitler’s first and contemporary biographer Konrad cited Gentiles. “We all cursed him and found it unbearable that we had a ** white crow among us has encountered most of Hitler’s fellow soldiers later NSDAP, but they found “Adi” as they called him (in World War II), quite remarkable, and were amazed that he smoked or drank, never to friends and family talked, showed no interest in brothel visits and spend hours reading or brooding in a corner of the shelter used to sit. [38] Shortly before the war, Hitler suffered after a British attack on 15 October 1918 Senfgasverwundung one for which he of 21 October to 19 November in the West Pomeranian town hospital Pasewalk was treated. The temporary blindness, he himself led back to an eye injury as a result of the gas attack. There he was on with the other wounded 10th November by the hospital clergy on the November Revolution and the ongoing ceasefire negotiations of Compiègne in to what Hitler represented themselves later as mental crisis in which he “around the eyes again became black.” [39] Ian Kershaw points out that the effects of mustard gas to such a severe conjunctival inflammation and swelling of the eyelids cause the sense of vision is partially impaired. He doubts, however, that Hitler on 10 November, a second time, “so hysterical hallucinations or” blind [40]. The company commander of Hitler cited Konrad Heiden in 1936 with the words: “This hysterical I’m never to sergeant!” [41] The suspicion that Hitler was suffering from hysteria, based on the seriousness of White’s novel I, the eyewitness, [42] was the literature on mental illness Hitler taken up several times shall be considered to be unfounded [43] would be after the testimony of Hitler’s company commander, however, Hitler’s Austrian citizenship is not the only reason that he -. although wounded several times and the Iron Cross of both classes and other decorations provided – never got beyond the status of corporal out. Fritz Wiedemann and Max Amann stressed in this context, Hitler himself had refused to take account in promotion. Sebastian Haffner called Hitler’s experience at the front, as it later came to understand military matters quite a bit, an educational experience, but his “unique educational experience.” [44] Rise Political beginnings Hitler later claimed that the outrage over the lost war and the “treason of the November criminals” have to give him the decision mature to become a politician. **This is contrary to its ambiguous attitude about current events that he had seen in the first months after the war. Political ambitions of Hitler immediately after the war, nothing is known. On 21 November 1918 he left the hospital in Pasewalk. He returned to the barracks of the 2nd Bavarian Infantry Regiment, the Oberwiesenfeld barracks in Munich and was initially intended not to be dismissed. In between, he watched from 12 February to 7 March 1919 Traunstein French and Russian prisoners of war to the dissolution of the local camp. He asked several times to select one of the trustees of his regiment (see below) and was thus a kind of liaison to the November revolution emerging new Bavarian state government under the socialist prime minister Kurt Eisner (USPD). In the confusion after Eisner’s assassination of Hitler seized on either side on 7 April 1919 proclaimed Munich Soviet Republic Party still on the side of their opponents, the most nationalist and anti-democratic-minded volunteer corps. He seems to have then been kept carefully in the background was the funeral procession to the burial **Eisner, a Jewish socialist present. [45] This is considered by some historians as evidence that Hitler’s political beliefs at that time was not as pronounced can be as it should present it six years later, in Mein Kampf. [46] Hitler was in April 1919 steward of his company in Munich and on 15 April for the replacement battalion of soldiers’ councils of the Council – since 13 April communist – *Munich soviet republic. The Munich garrison was established in November 1918 after the revolution and the radical transformation of Soviet Republic. Hitler said in those months obviously the views of the socialist government to a certain extent, in any case, he expressed no dissent, otherwise he would not have been selected as the steward of the soldiers. Presumably, he even wore the red armband of the revolution, like all soldiers of the Munich garrison, which is why Hitler was later announced about this time a little. As explanations opportunistic considerations (delay in the demobilization) and / or its general term “ideological confusion in the minds of” conceivable. In the narrow fellow Hitler was known at least since the end of April 1919 as a *counterrevolutionary, for which the denunciation of two colleagues from the Battalion Council at a tribunal a few days after the defeat of the Soviet Republic speaks [47]. Right now, Hitler began to develop the first time a degree of political activity. From 1919 is “Hitler’s first political document,” [48] in which he expresses a racist anti-Semitism of reason. “[49] He called Jews” the driving forces of the revolution, “calls for the” reckless use of nationally minded leadership personalities “and” final destination […] adamant the removal of the Jews in general “with” a government of national power. “[49] This, after Hitler considered essential anti-Semitism, Raul Hilberg,” he made to the government program, led to the murder of European Jews. “[50] After the bloody overthrow of the Soviet Republic, he was inspired by an investigative committee of the Munich Reichswehr administration recruited, which then constituted the decisive factor of power in Bavaria. There are indications that he is the good will of the new rulers bought by betraying regiment, who had been involved on the part of the Soviet government [47] Obviously, he fulfilled the hopes placed in him, because the key men of the so-called Black Reichswehr. – For example, the captain *Ernst Röhm – seem to have now seen a potential agitator, which helps spread nationalist ideas among workers were in the corporal Hitler. *His superiors sent Hitler on 5 to 12 June 26 June to 5 July 1919 on training for propaganda speaker, where he first encountered the influential Munich-based historian Karl Alexander von Müller, who was soon fascinated by Hitler and “him for the next big man” kept and supported as such. From 19 August was a member of a reconnaissance Hitler commands for political indoctrination of soldiers of the camp-assessed as unreliable Lechfeld. He left the first time the impression of a “born orator.” [51] He was then employed as undercover agent and instructed to * spy on political parties and circles, shot in post-revolutionary Munich like mushrooms. Membership of the Hitler DAPDazu was also founded by the journalist *Karl Harrer and the mechanic *Anton Drexler German Workers Party (DAP), the xenophobic, anti-Semitic and pseudo-socialist ideas propagated. On 12 September 1919 visited Hitler, on the recommendation of Captain Karl Mayr from the populist-nationalist group “Iron Fist”, the first time one of their meetings. As a speaker while the separation of the kingdom of Bavaria, called him Hitler opposed as vigorously as wordy and was noted for his oratorical talent. For the first time he had himself and others discovered a certain talent in him: He could captivate listeners and arouse emotions. Drexler said Harris said immediately, “a hot Goschn villages, the familiar ma braucha” (High German: “He has talent as a speaker, we might need them!”) And tried to recruit him on the same evening. On behalf of his superiors Hitler came on 19 October 1919 at the DAP – as a 55th Member, not as the seventh, as he claimed later times. Its members number 555 was because that the DAP began to count from 501 to simulate a little more size. As Hitler speeches attracted more and more with its stimulant listeners and members, he soon gained greater importance for the small DAP. He first worked as a foreman and advertising involved in the *spring of 1920 in the preparation of the 25-point program of the DAP, which is renamed to be operating in the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP). As he held on 31 March 1920 was finally released from the army, he was already living from his fees as a speaker. As an agitator, he was the little noticed NSDAP irreplaceable. This he used when he ousted in July 1921, the old party leadership with an ultimatum, forcing his election as Chairman of the National Socialist Party. Hitler was now a *political local celebrity who could benefit from the unstable, anti-democratic and militarist political climate in Bavaria and there “both in the intellectual public as with the Bavarian government and administration […] often found support.” [53] Outside of Bavaria, he caught amusement rather than fear. Occasionally one was abroad aware of him. [54] in 1921 and 1922 he studied in several speeches before the Berlin National Club to support the upper middle class. Even in his native Austria, he appeared occasionally. [55] Putsch and imprisonment Hitler, the right of * Ludendorff (center), had with members of the Hitler-Ludendorff Putsch (1924) Gustav Ritter von Kahr after the defeat of the Munich Soviet Republic tried in 1919 to establish the “order cell Bavaria”, the first in Bavaria “peace and order “should be restored to emit then the entire Weimar Republic and there a *monarchical and militaristic” national reconstruction “to be launched. [56] On 26 September 1923 was Kahr as a “General State Commissioner” dictatorial powers by the Bavarian government under Eugene of Knilling, joining forces with state police chief Hans von Seisser and the office relieved of straight from Berlin state commander of the army, Otto von Lossow a “triumvirate” that open conflict with the “red national government” was looking for. [53] * Hitler was planning to put itself at the forefront of this movement in order, with the support of Kahr and *Erich Ludendorff, former Quartermaster General of the General Headquarters (GHQ), now a sympathizer of the Nazi Party, following the example of Mussolini’s march on Rome from October 1922 to overthrow the government in Berlin by force. Because of the French occupation of the Ruhr, the enormous inflation and violent internal unrest in Germany, he believed, also found in large population assistance. [53] On the evening of 8 November 1923 Hitler entered with some of the Münchner Bürgerbräukeller gunmen, in a speech to the Kahr 3000 invited guests, including most of the Bavarian government. [57] Hitler fired a shot into the air, and called the “national revolution”. With Ludendorff and the present triumvirate to Kahr he agreed with “pressure and persuasion on the immediate coup and a” provisional German National Government “led by Hitler. [53] Although we arrested the ministers present and opened the headquarters in Bürgerbräu, failed the Hitler-Ludendorff Putsch in the night, as Minister of Education Francis Matt was able to flee to Regensburg, Ernst Röhm, only the occupation of the military district commands VII, but not the Munich barracks was possible, and Kahrs revoked triumvirate his consent. [53] The next morning attempted the 2,000 partially armed rebels, reinforced by hurrying Nazis from other Bavarian cities to achieve [53] Röhm in the military district command, “to take over there, the military force and the national revolution ‘with a’ march on Berlin ‘to the whole German Reich to export. “[57] the Kahr-loyal police chief Seisser subordinate to state police stopped the train near the field’s Hall, where shots were fired, which claimed 20 lives, including four policemen. [53] Ludendorff was still on 9 November arrest, Hitler, who had fled when the rebels were dispersed, a few days later [53]. The Hitler Putsch proceedings involving ten participants began on 26 February 1924 at the Bavarian People’s Court under the chairmanship of Hitler sympathizers George Neithardt. [58] Although Ludendorff was generally well-known participants, presented Hitler as the sole initiator of the whole enterprise dar. He denied the charge of ** high treason, by claiming that the “November criminals” of 1918 are the real traitors. Finally, Ludendorff was acquitted five defendants convicted for complicity in treason, Hitler and three other defendants for treason to the minimum sentence of five years imprisonment and a fine of 200 gold marks. The court stressed Hitler’s “honorable attitude” [59] and rejected the the Law on Protection of the Republic for foreign offenders provided for expulsion on the grounds that Hitler think and feel German is four and a half years voluntarily been in German army soldier and wounded it was so that Hitler’s expulsion of the question coming. had [58] of his sentence for good behavior he serve only nine months in Landsberg fortress. On 20 Hitler was released in December 1924. He had used the prison time to write the manuscript of the first part of his work Mein Kampf, [60] in which he described openly autobiographical form his political goals and the ideology of National Socialism. Thanks for reporting on the process Hitler was now in the north of Germany as the most radical of all nationalist politician known. His position in the Nazi Party was well established than ever and his voice in the nationalist movement gained considerable weight. Had he seen more as a drummer by then the movement of the way for another savior of Germany, such as Ludendorff should make you free, he now found himself increasingly self in the role of the great leader. All this availed him but little at first. Although the NSDAP was admitted after an initial ban, but the economic conditions in the Weimar Republic stabilized. The continued economic upturn and 1929 offered radical parties hardly approaches to their agitation. New beginnings and rise of the NSDAP After his release, Hitler began to organize the Nazi party to bring under his sole control. In northern Germany had a strong party under * Gregor Strasser wing formed the Hitler analogy not support the old, monarchical power elites wanted and advocated a socialist revolutionary rate. Hitler succeeded quickly, Strasser and his supporters either politically or neutralize such as Joseph Goebbels to draw to his side. From the failed coup, Hitler had concluded that it was necessary to seize power in the state * not by a revolution, but by legal means. He was concerned about beating the democracy with their own weapons and undermined. The Nazi party was to enter into parliament, but without being constructively. In addition, the SA should with spectacular parades, street fights and riots the eyes of the public attention to the party and its leader, and both reveal the weakness of the democratic system. On subsequent electoral successes of the party were her former German conditions for completely new methods of advertising and mass persuasion (→ Nazi propaganda) responsible. One reason for the success of this approach was the ability of Hitler to hold mass effective political speeches. With his campaign and watch the booklet The Way to a rebirth, he tried with little success at first to win the support of the watch industry. In the general election in 1928 won the National Socialist Party only 2.6% of the vote and 12 of 491 seats remained for the public “an insignificant, though vociferous splinter party, whose parliamentary role of statistical interest was at best” [61]. A first possibility to, in Germany for propaganda act, which was in 1929 by Nazi Party and DNVP jointly initiated referendum against the Young Plan, which envisaged a final settlement of the reparations from Germany and its former enemies. The referendum failed, but Hitler and the Nazi Party gained considerably in the ranks of the nationalist-conservative middle class to support what is in the state elections in Thuringia in the fall of 1929 paid off for the first time in a significant increase in votes. Especially since Hitler could count on the support of the publishing empire of the press DNVP chairman Alfred Hugenberg. This could – as before Ludendorff Papen, and later – in Hitler and the Nazi party only willing, steerable tools to help the German national forces on a mass basis. Breakthrough at the national level helped Hitler but it was the world economic crisis, which erupted in late 1929 and Germany was hit particularly hard. broke over the financial crisis of the empire on 27 March 1930, the Weimar coalition apart. Hermann Müller (SPD), the last chancellor, who still had a democratically-minded majority in the Reichstag was the first presidential cabinet members of the center-Heinrich Brüning, which could be based solely on the confidence of the Reich President Paul von Hindenburg. In the election on 14 September, the NSDAP increased their vote share at a stroke from 2.6 to 18.3 percent. Instead of having 12 MPs, as previously, they now moved to 107 in the Reichstag. *The state-supporting, democratic parties of the center had no majority, and Hitler had finally become a powerful factor in German politics. Way to the chancellorship For now at a “takeover” known appointment of Hitler as chancellor 30th January 1933, the Nazis used * propaganda, especially the terms “takeover”, “Day of National survey” and “German” or “National Socialist revolution.” These terms should particularly emphasize the legitimacy of the government Hitler. pointed this “takeover” in the apparent legality of the appointment process and the supposed normality of this operation, “national survey” or “National Socialist Revolution” suggests both “national consensus, but at least the consent of the people”, and the historic mission, in which the National Socialist Party saw. [62] In contrast, the term “seizure” in the Western historiography of the postwar period prevalent, at least until the mid-1960s to as “settlement” with the past, “the singular monstrosity and monstrous wickedness of the phenomenon of” express and for the purposes totalitarianism theory, a history of National Socialism, equality with the other kinds of ideological Stalinism represent. [62] “takeover” and “takeover” However, equally pressing, Hitler and the Nazi Party itself were the key actors in this process was. In contrast, the historical research is widespread agreement that Hitler’s chancellorship, “more the result of actions other than the deeds of Hitler” was [63] and that, therefore, terms such as transfer of power or transmission power are more appropriate [64]. Even more than the political parties and their voters, and social interest groups that supported Hitler, has the history of a relatively small group of conservative politicians too much importance to the transfer of state power to Hitler. Part of this ***”cabal” [65] called group – some together, sometimes against each other – tried to influence President Hindenburg included, among other things, his son Oskar von Hindenburg, Hitler’s previous chancellor Franz von Papen and Kurt von Schleicher and the DNVP Chairman Alfred Hugenberg. It urged Hindenburg within the meaning of various stakeholders including the Army, the old royalist elite, landowners east of the Elbe and part of the business community. The personal goals of the Camarilla members were different, sometimes contradictory. **They were united, however, is to replace the democracy with an authoritarian form of government. Hitler and his party rejected it initially from a plebeian. But for their projects, they saw little popular support, so they went over to look at the Nazi Party or one of its wings as the necessary mass base and support. In the crisis year 1932, they tried to dispel the reservations of the Hindenburg 85 years against a force participation of the National Socialists. Through the mediation of the known with Kurt von Schleicher, Ernst Roehm, Hitler had received an invitation in 1931 to a first interview with *Hindenburg. He looked for him on 10 October, one day before the meeting of the new German national-Nazi alliance “Harzburg Front”, together with Hermann Goering. The encounter, according to Konrad Heiden, Hitler’s first biographer, his run with little success: Hitler has fallen into the usual manner in long monologues, instead of answering the questions Hindenburg: “After meeting the president says to sneak him because he had a strange guy sent, this Bohemian corporal wanted to be Chancellor? Never! , More than Postmaster General. ‘”[66] Hindenburg Hitler’s birth, the Austrian Braunau, confused with the homonymous town in Bohemia. [67] Naturalization by tenure → Main articles: Adolf Hitler’s citizenship To even run in the election of the president, can Hitler lacked a crucial formal requirement [68] ********He was not a German citizen. Since he had abandoned in 1925 the Austrian citizenship voluntarily, he was stateless. [69] have since had a normal naturalization [70], every member state of the German Reich the opportunity to appeal, Hitler sought to citizenship by joining the civil service. [ 71] After several failed attempts, the most successful in the only two before 1932 the Nazi Party ruled with participation states of Thuringia and Bavaria Braunschweig, naturalization Hitler until the end of February 1932 in Braunschweig. There presented – as in Thuringia with Wilhelm Frick – the Nazi party since their participation in government in 1930 the Home Secretary, first Anton Franzen, 1931 Dietrich Klagges. Several of the Berlin NSDAP headquarters initiated proposals voted the most important civic coalition parties DNVP and DVP not after already trying to Hitler appointed secretly to Professor of Organic sociology and politics at the Technical University of Braunschweig, failed and so the Brunswick government as well as Hitler the ridicule of the press was revealed. [72] While Goebbels in the Berlin Sports Palace on 22 February, the long-planned candidacy Hitler announced as President, [73] visited Hans Frank, both lawyer Hitler and leader of the Nazi legal department, from Berlin to Braunschweig and took part in the urgent solution of the problem, because until the election of the president only few weeks were available. Shortly afterwards, Interior Minister Klagges appointed on 25 February, “the writer Adolf Hitler […] with effect from today in Brunswick government services” [74] to the Minister and asked him “with the conduct of the business of an operator at the Brunswick legation in Berlin.” [74] where he should be ” focus on obtaining orders for the Brunswick economy. “[74] With its local swearing-in on the next day, Hitler was – since that day, pro forma subtenant of the President of the Brunswick Diet, Ernst Zörner – in possession of “citizenship in the free state of Braunschweig [75] and should his service under the guidance of the Messenger Frederick take the floor. received “The Minister did not suspect that this” service “with the swearing-in was already exhausted!” [76] Hitler immediately leave for the presidential election campaign, his position was, however, also then not applied instead of disciplinary proceedings against himself and ignored all calls his superiors. [77] On 19 October 1932 he applied for indefinite leave, because “my ongoing political struggles in the near future, the fulfillment of my service contract” does not [78] enabled. At his request of 16 February 1933 he finally received by return mail “his release from the Brunswick public service.” [79] But with his appointment as officers, *Hitler had the legal conditions for his candidacy in the presidential election on 13 March 1932 to fulfill in time. [80] The elections of 1932 2. Ballot to the President Hitler on 21 June 1932 (center front) in the discussion with Hermann Goering and Ernst HanfstaenglDas crisis in 1932, which preceded Hitler’s chancellorship, was marked by numerous political campaigns in the kingdom and country level. Besides the presidential election were held twice in elections to the Reichstag. They offered Hitler and his party the opportunity to permanent agitation and violent confrontations with their political opponents. The incumbent since 1925, President Hindenburg failed on the first ballot an absolute majority, but could on 10 April 1932 in the second ballot with 53 to 36.8 percent of the votes cast against Hitler prevail. For the election Chancellor *Bruning had provided, among other things, that he could move the Social Democrats to support Hindenburg. The SPD had Bruning strictly deflationary economic policies, the impact of the economic crisis worsened at times still supported in the Reichstag widerwilllig. She wanted to avoid at all costs elections, fear of which a further increase of the Nazi Party was in favor. Hindenburg, however, had expected Brüning, form a strong parliamentary majority to the right of the SPD. Annoyed that he for his re-election had the help of his political opponents must accept the trust withdrew Hindenburg, *Bruning, appointed on the advice of von Schleicher and Franz von Papen as chancellor, *dissolved the Reichstag. In the election to the Reichstag on 31 July 1932, the NSDAP the largest party with *37.3 percent. Papen’s right-wing government of “barons” as she was called by their political opponents, succeeded, however, not the Nazi party to win a majority for the buyer, when Hitler insisted on would want to be chancellor. Already on 12 September, it came at the second Diet session – even before the proposed policy statement Papen – to the scandal surrounding the recent emergency decrees. Hindenburg dissolved the Reichstag even during the session again. At the next election on 6 November 1932 the Nazi party lost substantial votes, but remained the strongest party with *33.1 percent. Together with the Communist Party, the National Socialists, however, remained the majority of Members so that Papen was facing the same problem as in the summer. He stepped back and struck the President’s before the elimination of the Reichstag. But Hindenburg feared a *civil war, are subject in which the Army and the forces of the SA Communist Party could, and appointed on 3 December Kurt von Schleicher, who had become minister of defense under Papen, Chancellor. [81] Schleicher tried now. to split the NSDAP by a cross-front strategy: [82] Hitler’s confidant, *Gregor Strasser, the protagonist of the so-called left wing of the Nazi party was ready to Schleicher’s proposal to enter into a participation in government and even Vice-Chancellor to be. But Hitler was his course, not to be satisfied with less than the *Reich Chancellor, in December 1932 to operate successfully within the Nazi party in tears and threats of suicide [83] At the end of the year were the political actors reached an impasse. The conservative elites wanted the NSDAP While joining the government, not however to the Registrar of Hitler and the Nazi Party was on its own not in a position to take power. When the party was in the state elections in mid-January 1933 with lip *39.5 percent of the vote strongest force, which she considered it as a sign of stabilization, although it was only in the small country of about 100,000 eligible voters. [84] also looked at his Schleicher strategy failed as now. *Franz von Papen, who had fallen out with Schleicher and now sought to regain power, exercised influence continues to Hindenburg. He finally drove forward the *appointment of Hitler as chancellor, which he believed “frame” in a staff dominated by the Conservative government to be able, as he put it. Support through economic and military Support Hitler was now increasingly for **major industries and banks. Even in the early phase of the Nazi party he had held **anti-capitalist tendencies in the party small and only the Jews for the plight of the economy blamed. In a speech to the Düsseldorf Industrialists Club beginning of 1932 raised Hitler the role of business elites praise and stressed – in allusion to the still large potential voters of the SPD and KPD – could not survive the German people, as long as half of “property as theft” consider . In spite of this courtship, the share of industrial-scale donations to the revenue of the NSDAP low. This was demonstrated, inter alia, in the fall of 1932 when they ran into serious financial problems. demonstrate how the historian Henry A. Turner could, had the self-financing through membership fees and entrance fees for speaking events and more important for the party. The influence of **big business on the rise of the Nazi Party was evident at other points: [85] By the end of 1932 ** Hitler had won good relations with business circles and overcome their objections to the Nazi economic program largely can. In economic policy think tanks such as the Study Committee on Economic Affairs of the job well or the Economic Policy Department of the Nazi party strove Industrial – especially “the business community from the second and third member of the iron and steel industry” [86] and later Arisierungsgewinnler, but [also bankers and big landowners 64] – **a future National Socialist economic policy “with the thriving private sector to bring in line” to “join in industry and trade” [87]. Since 1931, the President “inundated”. [88] of lists of signatures and petitions, who **supported Hitler. Two developments motivated the underlying interest at the turn of 1932/1933, its commitment to Chancellor Hitler, to enhance: the cutting of the Nazi party in the November election and the politics of Kurt von Schleicher. The losses of the Nazi Party in November and the gradual improvement in economic prospects had deteriorated Hitler visible. This saw many national conservative businessman forced to sign, organized by Hjalmar Schacht industrial input, in which it rejected “the former parliamentary party regime.” It should be abolished in favor of “transfer of the responsible management of a equipped with the best material and personal presidential powers to the leader of the largest national group” [89] – that is in favor of Hitler. The initiative of 19 November had no success, but the “national-conservative forces in the economy, military and bureaucracy”, [90] also saw their targets at risk of apparently pro-union rate Schleicher. The achievement of these objectives they believed only achieve based on the Nazi mass movement can be. The military hoped to turn from a Chancellor Hitler to eliminate or at least an easing of the conditions of the Versailles Treaty, in particular the upgrading and expansion of the army. National business and political conservatives hoped that Hitler a stable government and a realignment of the authoritarian political culture in Germany, if not a return to monarchy. Them undesirable elements of Hitler’s program – Guide dictatorship instead of monarchy and a measure of socio-political interests of workers – would weaken these elites by “framing” of Hitler and the “domestication” of his policies [64] These Franz appeared von Papen as a suitable alliance partner since. he “remains the full confidence of Hindenburg had and the only one has been able to dispel the distrust of Hitler.” [64] The cooperation of Papen and his supporters secured Hitler by offering Papen Vice-Chancellor and the right to be present at all sessions of the Chancellor to the President. The classical ministries should be filled in accordance with the Einrahmungstaktik by conservatives. At the meeting with Hitler, von Papen in the house of the banker Schroder both agreed on 4 January 1933 to Hitler’s Reich Chancellor on such terms. Preparations to form a government The Nazis, Hitler, Goering and Frick behind “framed” by conservative ministers in the Reich Chancellery, 30 January 1933.Von there, the actual “birth of the Third Reich” (Karl Dietrich Bracher) notes the research “a direct causal sequence of events to 30 January “[91] to: the Frankfurter Zeitung had for New Year’s Day 1933, ruled,” The massive Nazi attack on the state is cut off, isolated [92] the alliance between Papen and Hitler, the government Schleicher, in the protective tariff conflict between agriculture and export industry by the Nazi-led National Rural Confederation put added pressure. [93] The Osthilfeskandal the misuse of agricultural subsidies, and Hindenburg’s reputation at risk, allowed Hitler on 22 January, Oskar von Hindenburg, the son of the president, acquired through a combination of threats and opportunities as a supporter, so Paul eliminate from Hindenburg’s last reservations against Hitler’s chancellorship. [64] [94] and General Werner von Blomberg, new defense minister will be, was won for a government Hitler, Schleicher completely isolated and unable to act, “left no mass base, without the confidence of entrepreneurs camp and from the President down, broke even the last pillars of the policy Schleicher, the closed support of the army” . [95] After his resignation on 28th January 1933, free the way for Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor, Papen as now “become the most zealous advocates of Chancellor Hitler’s” Hindenburg was compared [95]. The next day the Nazis scattered in Berlin coup rumors in order to speed Hindenburg’s decision. Accordingly, there could be a military dictatorship Schleicher [96] and even arrest Hindenburg. [64] then organized Papen attention to Hitler’s Council that Blomberg when he arrived in Berlin on the morning of 30 January brought directly to Hindenburg and – unconstitutional -.. Sworn in as new minister of defense was [64] About 11 clock was followed by the swearing in Hitler and his other ministers [64] This was the first step of the transfer of power to Hitler, from this “takeover” of posterity “seizure of power ‘, and completed [62]. It was followed by the re-dissolution of the Reichstag on 1 February and the government by further regulations of the President. Papen was confident at this point to be able to check Hitler as Chancellor of the conservative majority and the support of Hindenburg Minister: “I have the confidence of Hindenburg. In two months we have pushed Hitler into a corner that he squeaks. “[97] A dictator Establishment of the dictatorship After the Reichstag fire that was blamed on the Communists, Hitler reached the Hindenburg of emergency ordinances under Article 48 of the Weimar Constitution. With them he was put in a position to override fundamental rights. Since these emergency regulations, however, had only a very limited period of validity, should take its place a permanent settlement: the Law to Remedy the Distress of the People and Empire, the so-called Enabling Act. This Hitler needed a two thirds majority in the Reichstag. To achieve this, supported a group of industrialists led by Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach the Nazi campaign for the election on 5 March 1933. In a secret meeting of 20 February 1933 they made it three million Reichsmark available. As was the two-thirds majority is not reached yet, prevented Hitler’s SA and Goering subordinate part of the Prussian police members of the Reichstag, that all 81 members of the CP Group, and some Social Democrats unconstitutional taking part in the crucial parliamentary session. Civil parties should be reassured on the day of Potsdam, where the new regime tried to put in the Prussian tradition. The law was passed against the remaining votes of the SPD deputies, but with the consent of the bourgeois parties, including the Center and Liberal parties DVP and the German State Party. With the enactment of the enabling act started the National Socialist dictatorship, in the contemporary propaganda until mid-1939 called the Third Reich. On 1 June 1933 initiated the imperial state of German industry under the so-called Krupp Gustav Adolf Hitler Fund of the German economy, a compulsory levy on all businesses in favor of the Nazi Party as calculated by the wage and salary bill. By 1945 this came of 700 million marks, so that Hitler and his party had no financial problems. Hitler incited by the Rohm competitors Heinrich Himmler, Hermann Goering, Reinhard Heydrich, took advantage of an alleged coup attempt Ernst Roehm, and gave the order to murder his friend Roehm Duz-30 June 1934. Not only are many leaders of the SA, generals of the army and people have been killed, the regime stood in the way, but also persons who had previously opposed to Hitler, including former Chancellor and General Kurt von Schleicher and his wife in their apartment . Hitler in November 1935 at a parade on the occasion of the Reich Party Congress in Nürnberg.In a speech to the Reichstag on 13 Hitler in July 1934 renewed its commitment to the Army that it would be the only bearer of arms of the state. After the death of Reich President Paul von Hindenburg (2 August 1934) was the supreme command of the Army without resistance to Hitler. merge the latter ordered the Office of the President after a referendum with the Office of the Registrar and called himself Fuehrer and Reich Chancellor. [98] He demonstrated to the union of the offices of Reich President and Reich Chancellor on his person, used not aware, however, the title Reich President for themselves;. this should the late Paul reserved von Hindenburg, the official explanation [99] Instead of an oath to the Constitution had officers, soldiers, civil servants and the Minister now “before God” the “leader of the German Reich and people, Adolf Hitler “swear loyalty and obedience. [100] Another step in the total dictatorship was followed in 1938, when stepping down in January, the widowed Reichswehr Minister Werner von Blomberg for his marriage to a former Berlin prostitute who was not considered befitting, although Hitler and Goering had been witnesses. In the same month became the commander of the Army, Colonel General Baron von Fritsch, a two years ago because of false accusation to Hitler under suspicion of homosexual inclinations. Hitler dismissed even this self-General and took over command of the armed forces. As the executive organ of the High Command of the Armed Forces took the place of the Defense Ministry (→ Blomberg-Fritsch crisis). Persecution and destruction policy The government of discrimination and persecution in the era of National Socialism, whose victims often tried to escape by fleeing into exile or emigration, extended not only to the political opponents of Hitler and the Nazi Party. Arrests, torture, confinement in concentration camps and other repressive measures, up to his murder, met since the Decree of the Reich President for the Protection of People and State (“Reichstag Fire Decree) of 28 February 1933 mainly Communists and Social Democrats, but also pacifists, the conservative opposition and all other citizens, expressed their criticism or resisted (→ Members of the resistance). Thus, for example, Jehovah’s Witnesses for refusing military service and of the Hitler salute sent to concentration camps. Major driving forces of Hitler’s policies were to be on the final extermination of the Jews targeted anti-Semitism and his radical Social Darwinism. From the beginning of his public appearances until his death, Hitler repeatedly disparaged Jews and other groups. This he justified by them systematically in his opinion, as “inferior” people devalued. In this sense, he also discriminated against Sinti and Roma, Poles, Russians and other peoples. The largest after the Jews killed under Hitler’s rule group were about 2.5 to 4 million Soviet prisoners of war, which should be destroyed because of hunger as a “Slavic subhumans,” also the racist ideology. As “asocial” were more socially excluded groups, such as Jeni and homosexuals, but also non-conformist children and adolescents (→ youth concentration camp), persecuted, imprisoned in concentration camps or killed. Hitler’s social Darwinist ideas were also evident in statements about sick people and people with physical and mental disabilities, which he described as “living”. Hitler saw in history a permanent struggle to eradicate in which in his opinion, the supposedly weak strong, the “superior” to “inferior races” were. He said about the Nuremberg Party Rally in 1929. “If Germany were to get one million children annually and eliminate 700000-800000 of the weakest, it would end the result might even be a power increase [101] Persecution of Jews Anti-Semitism of Hitler and the Nazis first surfaced in the open discrimination and disenfranchisement of the Jews and led during the Second World War to the Holocaust. The so-called Final Solution of the Jewish question, which is already indicated by Hitler in Mein Kampf intention to exterminate all Jews fell, about six million people throughout Europe for the victims. Terrorism measures and plans to 1939 A “master plan”, how to deal with the Jews had Hitler not, however. [102] The discrimination and persecution increased rather mostly without his initiative, they were from the more hesitant Hitler in response to pressure from the bottom of his party comrades exercised, improvised. [103] After it had come shortly after the seizure of power by the SA to spontaneous acts of violence against Jews, ordered the new government to a one-day boycott of Jewish businesses to show that irregular activities of a valve. The boycott of 1 April 1933, at the organization of Hitler not immediately made its appearance, was placed in response to alleged “Jewish atrocity propaganda” from abroad. [104] The regulations and laws that restrict the rights of Jews on and on and followed them to second class citizens degraded. The Law on the Restoration of Civil resulted, for example, from April 1933 to the dismissal of Jewish civil servant from the public service. The exercise of other professions was difficult for Jews ever. Jewish doctors and lawyers were allowed to operate only about Jewish clients. Other professions were closed to them all. Hitler was hovering at that time before a short-term goal of ghettos, the Jews and their isolation from the rest of the population. The Jews must be “out of all trades […], locked in a territory where they can indulge […], while the German people watching, how wild animals are looking at.” [102] The basis of the Nazi party was dissatisfied with their opinion, insufficient radicalism of the Jewish policy of Hitler. Therefore, there were repeated acts of violence against Jews, which led to protests from conservative allies of Hitler’s administration and economy. After Hitler had banned in August 1935 all further individual actions against the Jews, he struck at the Nuremberg Party Rally in September, the open discontent among the “old fighters” against. Hitler waved to the spontaneous initiative of the Chief Medical Officer Gerhard Wagner made his own, had called for a “Blood Protection Act”. The competent Ministerialbürokraten were cited from Berlin to Nuremberg and drafted hastily in one night, the Nuremberg Race Laws. [105] These laws stripped German Jews of their civil rights permanently. Among others, marriages between Jews and Gentiles and made prohibited sexual relations between them as so-called racial disgrace punishable. State and party sponsored “linearizations”, as the takeover of Jewish businesses by non-Jews – the latter – very favorable conditions have been mentioned. Emigration of Jews was also willing to impose a tax Capital Flight, by which they already limited revenue from linearizations also largely lost yet. Its peak before the War, the persecution of Jews in the pogrom of 9 on the 10th November 1938: As at a meeting of leading party officials on 9 November 1938 on the occasion of the anniversary of Hitler’s putsch, the message arrived, on 7 November by a Jewish assassin wounded Paris Embassy Secretary Ernst vom Rath had died of his injuries, Hitler moved to a short conversation with Goebbels back of the celebration. Goebbels then instructed the assembled party leadership and continued in a supposedly “spontaneous [n] expressions of popular rage” in transition. In the whole realm of violent riots against Jews and Jewish communities, synagogues and other institutions began. [106] Hitler radicalized now his anti-Semitic rhetoric. In a speech marking the sixth anniversary of taking power, he threatened 30 January 1939: “Today I want to be a prophet again: if it should succeed in international finance Jewry in and outside Europe, plunging the nations once more into a world war, then the result is not the Bolshevism of the earth and thus the victory of Jewry, but the destruction of the Jewish race in Europe. “[107] Development of mass murder during World War II Hitler portrait in an exhibition at KL MauthausenNach beginning of the war, by the emigration of Jews had become very difficult, went over the regime of repression and expulsion to extermination of the Jews. After the Wehrmacht and the SS had terrorized in conquered Poland, the Jews living there in different ways, the systematic murder of Jews began
  11. jlue Says:

    I am impressed by your blog and the research that goes into your post. Good job.

  12. anotheroklahomarose Says:

    More awesome research, Paolo. Once again, new facts I hadn’t found in my research. Keep it coming.

    Did you know Marx was a Jew and an heir to rabbinical scholars?

    The word Nazi is a bastardization of the Hebrew word “Nasi” meaning “Prince” which was a title higher than that of “Rabbi”. In modern Hebrew, the name “Nasi” means President. Because of the sacredness of the word and its rabbinical meaning and affiliation, Hitler used the terminology for his political party wrapped around his full intentions — with ample eugenics support from American corporations and philanthropic foundations — to institute his “Final Solution”.

    By using the word “Nazi” for his party and his military leaders, he was thus proclaiming himself to be the New Prince (or King or Rabbi, which Christ was) of the Jews.


  13. anotheroklahomarose Says:

    The link at the bottom of my post, in addition to ample info within Wikipedia and from countless resources within the Hebrew communities should be all you need to verify the statement concerning the word “Nasi” and its bastardization by Hitler.

    Marx WAS educated in the Hebrew faith, tolerated his father’s conversion to Christianity, and as a adult subscribed to no faith and declared himself an atheist.

    I’m a Jewess, Paolo, with relatives who helped liberate some of the Death Camps, and some who were also POWs both in the Phillippines, and in one concentration camp. I don’t waste my time making posts on blogs about issues that are part of my heritage, history and soul unless (A) I know what I am talking about, and (B) know that ample research sources exist for one to follow up, or not, as one chooses.

    The word “Nazi” never stood for anything having to do with the National Socialist party, or Communism, or Marxism, or Socialism, of any of the -isms. It is what it is: a deliberate bastardization of a Hebrew word and title for both a religious leader and that of Christ, the ultimate Rabbi at a very early age.

    I was reared in the Baptist church. I am still a Jewess who treasures my heritage and faith. The fact my birth mother and step-father chose to ignore it and denounce it changes nothing. In the state of Oklahoma, Holocaust history or any mention thereof, was forbidden to be taught in the schools until the early 70s.

    The reason? America gave sanctuary to over 200,000 of The Reich’s finest killers and incorporated them all across America. Some within the CIA (which used to be the OSS) some within the foundations of the corporations which funded The Shoah, including Carnegie Foundations and Institutues (eugenics progroms), the Rockefeller Institutes, Ford, GM, Exxon, Texaco (from whence the Red Star derived), IBM, the US military, assorted medical labs, Kaiser Institutes for Medical Technology (which evolved into Kaiser Permanente Hospitals — the Permanente deriving from “a Permanent (final) Solution”).

    Those of lesser consequences were given their own businesses and allowed to perpetrate their crimes in America: the movie industry, the television industry, psychiatry and mind alteration medical research, the child porn industry (which existed quite well and still does within the Bible Belt where thousands of kids were and are victimized. I was, by a neighbor who was proud of his Romanian ties to the Holocaust and proud to boast of all America did for him and others. His daughter was also a victim. IBM promoted this as well.)

    The point of adding a VIABLE LINK to the end of my post was to back up what I said and to provide you with another research source.

    Have a blessed evening.

  14. paolosilv Says:

    The following text is extracted from the book accompanying the BBC TV series “The Nazi’s – A warning from History” by Laurence Rees, BBC Books, 1997.

    Riva Losanskaya, who lived in the village of Butrimonys, roughly halfway between Kaunas and the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius, was 21 years old when the Germans invaded. Until the war she had spent a happy life in Butrimonys with her father, mother and two sisters. They were Jewish, but that was of little consequence before the war as everyone rubbed along together without a problem. ‘When the war began,’ says Riva, ‘although we knew that the Jews were suffering in Poland, we still could not believe that the same thing could happen to us. How could innocent people be detained and killed? My father used to say that without a trial no harm could be done to anyone.’ But as the German troops advanced, Riva saw people rushing around shouting ‘We must flee!’ There were rumours of Jews being killed in reprisals by Germans in the local town and that ‘the streets were scattered with corpses’. Riva and her family gathered a few possessions together and travelled ten kilometres to a nearby village where they tried to hide. They still thought that the Russians had been pushed back only temporarily and that the Germans would be swiftly thrown out of Lithuania. Soon, however it became clear that the Russians were not returning and that there was little point, as a family, in trying to hide in another village. ‘The people in the village wouldn’t give you a crust of bread,’ says Riva. ‘We had nowhere to go.’ So the family returned to Butrimonys, where they lived uneasily in their own house.

    Within days of the German occupation, all the Jewish young men of the village were rounded up and taken away. The remaining Jewish villagers were told that the young men had been taken to the nearby town of Alytus, where they had been put to work for the Germans. Riva’s father was among those taken after the initial arrests. Days later some locals called on her and her mother and saidthey had good news. ‘These “nice” people with whom we had been on such friendly terms all our life came to us,’ says Riva, ‘and told us, “We’ve seen your father, don’t cry!” It was Vaitkevicius [a local who has since died], who came to tell us, “Here is a letter we got from him. We’ll read it to you and then I’ll take a parcel back for him.” He had been very friendly with my father. I went to see my neighbours to tell them that everyone was still alive. “Why the tears? My father is still alive and I’m sending him clothes and food via Vaitkevicius.” My neighbours said, “Riva, you have such nice friends. Can we pay him to take parcels to our husbands and fathers too?” So we got our parcels ready and gave them to Vaitkevicius who took them all. Other people were collecting up parcels in all the other streets too.’ But it was a trick, breathtaking in its callousness. Just before they were killed by the Lithuanian police acting; on German orders, the Jewish men had been made to write letters to their families asking for money, clothes and food to be sent to them. Then locals had been given these letters by the police so that they could steal from the victims’ families. By the time Riva was told by her neighbours, ‘We’ve seen your father,’ he was already dead.
    After her father was taken, Riva and her family never spent a night at home. Instead they slept out in the potato fields or in the homes of their neighbours, being careful never to spend more than one night in any one place. Nonetheless, they never went far from their house and still visited it during the day. Then, in September 1941, rumours of a change in policy towards the Jews began to spread around the village. It was said that the Germans had ordered the killing of every Jew in Lithuania, including women and children. ‘A woman had even said, “I know that they’ve already dug the pits,”‘ says Riva, ‘but we thought that maybe the pit was for potatoes…for the war. She was running round the ghetto saying;, “They’re going to shoot us tomorrow, you must flee!” But the people were thinking, “Perhaps they aren’t going to shoot us, perhaps they dug those pits for no particular reason.” That’s how stupid we were. We didn’t imagine that they would come to kill us so fast. The clever Jewish people said that since some kind of holiday was coming, we could relax for a few days.’

    As 9 September was a church holiday, many Jews in Butrimonys thought it would be the one day on which their safety was guaranteed. They were wrong. That morning Lithuanian policemen, helped by enthusiastic locals, began rounding up the women, children and old people who constituted the remaining Jewish women in Latvia are forced to pose for the camera just before they are shot, December 1941 . Within months the Nazis would have developed a more efficient way of committing mass murder – the gas chambers of the extermination camp.

    Jewish population of Butrimonys. Riva and her mother were part of a column herded along a road out of the village. Their destination was about 2 kilometres away – a pit which had been dug about 200 metres from the road among grassland and trees. The Jews shuffling to their deaths were weak with hunger, many shaken by living rough in the fields. ‘I was thinking they’d kill everyone and the survivors would be cursed,’ says Riva. ‘But right up until the very last moment, I still had a faint vestige of hope.’ When they were little over 500 metres from the place of execution, Riva saw a path leading off into the forest on the other side of the road. She dragged her mother towards it and together they hid behind some shrubs. The guards had grown lazy because the rest of the Jews were so compliant and Riva and her mother were not missed. Minutes later they heard gunshots. ‘Dogs were barking, perhaps they were frightened by the sound of the shooting,’ says Riva. ‘My mother said, “They’re already shooting!” I said, “No, no, they’re dogs.” I only said that because I was scared that my mother would go mad.’

    That same day Alfonsas Navasinskas was crossing a nearby meadow with a friend, Kosima. ‘We saw people being driven along from Butrimonys,’ he says. `Someone on horseback came first and then some policemen and then some ordinary people – a shopkeeper and some clerks who worked in the offices distributing food coupons. They had all gathered together to take the Jews along. They were given sticks and the odd rifle.’ Navasinskas and his friend followed the group and watched as the Jews were ordered to lie down on the grass. ‘Then along came the men who did the shooting. “Everybody get up,” the Jews were told.’ Navasinskas noticed that torn banknotes lay scattered on the ground. The Jews had ripped up their money to prevent the killers profiting from them. ‘I waited a little and then went closer,’ says Navasinskas. ‘I could hear them as they shouted, “Choose your space, you so and so!”‘ He watched as a new group of Jews were ordered to strip at the side of the pit. As they did, some threw their clothes to people they knew in the crowd to prevent their killers from stealing their possessions. Navasinskas later heard remarks by a villager, who had been given an overcoat by one of the condemned Jews just before he was shot: ‘Had the Jews survived, I wouldn’t have got it. I’ll wear it to a dance tonight!’ He also heard a Jewish woman tell another local, ‘Here’s a cardigan, give it to your wife.’ The buttons were covered with cloth but they were gold coins from the Tsar’s time. The recipient of the cardigan, unaware of its hidden value chucked it in the farmyard with the chickens. In time, the chickens pecked holes in the cloth and revealed the glittering coins to the farmer. ‘He has since died, but he told me that to have deserved finding the coins he must have been deemed “good in the eyes of God”.’

    After he had seen five groups of Jews shot at the pit, Alfonsas Navasinskas went home alone (his friend stayed on to collect the torn-up money). ‘I kept turning round to look behind me, wondering whether anybody was coming after me. It was such a horrible feeling. Nobody spoke up for the Jews, nobody said a word. It was as if it were all quite normal.’

    Another villager who came to witness the murders was Juozas Gramauskas , then 21 years old. ‘The women, children and old men were shot inside the pit,’ he says. ‘The children were going from person to person, shouting, “Mummy, Daddy, Mummy, Daddy, Mummy!” I think someone was calling for his daughter. And along came a really fat chap with a pistol and…bang, bang! All the grief and weeping was just heartbreaking. Even now, I cannot bear the memory of all the lamenting and crying there. To this day I cannot imagine what was going on.’

    The shooting was carried out by Lithuanian soldiers acting under German orders. There were German soldiers present but they simply observed the slaughter. The killing went on until evening, when fires were lit in order to see if there was any movement inside the pit. ‘I constantly see it before my eyes, the beasts!’ says Juozas Gramauskas.

    All this horror is registered in the report of Einsatzkommando 3 simply as follows: ‘9.9.41 Butrimonys – 67 Jews, 370 Jewesses, 303 Jewish children – (total) 740.’ Some villagers remember the execution day as 8 rather than 9 September and recall seeing as many as 900 Jews killed. In the savage circumstances precise record-keeping was hardly practicable.

    It is almost impossible to understand how human beings could do this. An easy route, and one that has been taken by some, is to say that those involved were all ‘mad’, but the evidence scarcely supports this easy conclusion. The diary of a German/Austrian member of an Einsatzkommando, Felix Landau, survives. He was a cabinet-maker by trade, who joined the Nazis in 1931 at the age of 21 and became a member of the Gestapo in Vienna in 1938. He reported to the Einsatzkommando in June 1941, initially for duty in Poland. His diary is an exceptional document because it mixes the horror of his days of killing with sentimental longing for his girlfriend. The entry for 3 July 1941 concludes: ‘I have little inclination to shoot defenceless people – even if they are only Jews. I would far rather good honest open combat. Now good night, my dear Hasi [bunny].’ The entry for two days later records the shooting of members of the Resistance: `One of them simply would not die. The first layer of sand had already been thrown on the first group when a hand emerged from out of the sand, waved and pointed to a place, presumably his heart. A couple more shots rang out, then someone shouted – in fact the Pole himself – “Shoot faster!” What is a human being?’ The next paragraph begins: ‘It looks like we’ll be getting our first warm meal today. We’ve all been given 10 Reichmarks to buy ourselves a few necessities. I bought myself a whip costing 2 Reichmarks.’

    On 12 July 1941 he writes: ‘Isn’t it strange, you love battle and then you have to shoot defenceless people. Twenty-three had to be shot…The death candidates are organized into three shifts as there are not many shovels. Strange, I am completely unmoved. No pity, nothing. That’s the way it is and then it’s all over.’

    Felix Landau’s diary shows a man to whom remorse is an unknown emotion. He is a selfish and base human being, but not a madman.

    There are many advantages to studying such a diary, not least that it represents the moment with a lack of hindsight. But there is no substitute for the additional insight to be gained by meeting the participants, so we set out to find one of the killers who had operated in Lithuania. Eventually we traced a former Lithuanian soldier who had murdered Jews alongside the German Einsatzgruppe and who spent twenty years in Siberia as a result. Petras Zelionka was born in 1917 and came from a peasant background. His family was not badly off for the region, owning a small farm with two cows. Under the Russian occupation he heard rumours that ‘in the security department people were mostly tortured by the Jews. They used to put screws on the head and tighten them, thus torturing the teachers and professors.’ He joined the Lithuanian Army because, as he says, ‘I respected Lithuania and I am a real Lithuanian…I was attracted to military things, I liked it very much.’

    Petras Zelionka was first involved in the killing of Jews in the Seventh Fort at Kaunas in the early days of the German occupation, during the period when the Einsatzgruppen killed predominantly men. As a guard, he patrolled the ramparts and watched as Jewish men were shot, fifteen at a time, at the edge of a pit which had been dug within the confines of the fort. Earth was thrown on each layer of bodies, then the whole process was repeated until there were no more Jewish men left to kill that day He recalls that the men went to their deaths with little resistance, ‘totally as lambs’.

    From the late summer of 1941 the killing widened to include women and children in outlying villages, and Zelionka became one of the murderers himself. His answer to our question, ‘When was the first time you had to shoot?’ is revealing. ‘Where? Where was I? Maybe I was in Babtai? Or maybe near Joniskis, around there…I had to take them somewhere. To take them first from the ghetto and to bring them somewhere.’ As the statement he gave to the Russian authorities after the war confirms, Zelionka participated in many mass killings – so many that today he cannot remember where he first committed murder.

    Describing a typical day’s killing, he told us how soldiers from his battalion would leave their barracks after breakfast, not knowing their destination. There would be the simple command, ‘Men, we have to go!’ Then they would clamber aboard their lorries and leave. The mood in the lorry he describes as ‘not very good. Sometimes I thought I would have to shoot an innocent man.’ (His concept of ‘innocence’ is a diabolical one which excludes all Jews, even women and children.)

    Once they reached their destination they would harry the Jews from the village out to the pre-prepared execution site. The Germans would strip the Jews of their ‘golden things’, such as jewellery and watches, and then order them to lie down. A certain number would then be counted off and taken to the pit, where they were shot. His battalion was assisted by a German detachment. ‘You could not do it without the Germans. They had machine-guns. We had just to shoot.’

    The murderers were allowed to drink vodka during the killing. With vodka ‘everyone becomes braver’ says Zelionka. ‘When you are drunk, it is different.’ Sometimes, after the murders, the Germans would thank the Lithuanians for their help. In his statement to the Russians after the war, Zelionka revealed what he and his comrades did after murdering up to five hundred people in Vikija: ‘When we had finished the shooting, we had lunch at a restaurant in Krakes. Spirits were consumed.’ Murder did not diminish his appetite.

    The murderers were all volunteers. There is no record of anyone being shot or imprisoned for refusing to murder. This is a reality that Zelionka finds hard. to accept today. ‘You could refuse,’ we told him.

    ‘You could shoot and you could not shoot,’ he replied. ‘But you just pressed the trigger and shot. And that was it, it was not a big ceremony.’

    ‘Did you ever think of refusing to shoot?’

    ‘Now it is very difficult to explain all that, all those things: to shoot or not to shoot. I do not know. The others did it because of their indignation…The Jews are very selfish, how could I say….’

    We asked him about shooting women and children. ‘Let’s say there is a Jew in front of you, not a man, but a woman or a child. A child has certainly never been a Communist. And you shoot that child. What had he done?’

    ‘This is a tragedy, a big tragedy, because…how can I explain it better? Maybe it is because of a curiosity – you just pull the trigger, the shot is fired and that is it. There is a saying, “Youth is foolishness”.’ Talking later about the murder of children, he remarked, ‘Some people are doomed and that is it.’

    We tried in vain to get an emotional response from this mass murderer. ‘Who was the man you shot first? Do you remember him?’ we asked.

    ‘No, I cannot tell you,` he replied. ‘There were only the Jews, no one was our countryman. They were all Jews.’

    ‘But were they men, women or children?’

    ‘What can I say? It could be a man, a woman or…after so many years, how can you remember everything that happened?’

    I asked our interpreter to press this convicted killer harder about his apparent lack of guilt. Did he not feel any shame? The result was both illuminating and the end of the interview.

    ‘My colleague, an Englishman, asks me to translate this question to you: he says that English people, watching this film, will hardly understand how somebody, a soldier, used to shoot other people like this but he does not feel guilty .’ They can accuse me, if they want. I was sentenced for twenty years for that. Short and clear. I was guilty and I carried out the sentence of twenty years…penal servitude.’

    But that was an official punishment. What does your conscience say?’

    I do not know. I am not going to answer such questions…I am not going to explain or tell you any more.’

    So the interview ended.

    It was an extraordinary experience to meet Petras Zelionka. It is rare for someone who has committed war crimes as horrendous as this to admit it openly, even if he has served a long sentence for the offence and does not risk prosecution again. Yet here before us was a man who killed alongside the Einsatzgruppen and who did not try either to hide the fact or to glory in it. He sat and talked about committing mass murder in a reserved and matter-of-fact way.

    When reading documents relating to the Einsatzgruppen killings, one is always tempted to think that the men who committed them were not really human. Perhaps they were collectively insane. But Petras Zelionka gave every impression of being a sane man. If you met him in the street and were introduced to him, you would not notice anything out of the ordinary. Yet he murdered in cold blood, standing feet away from his victims. Today, when the only mass killers we read about are the crazed murderers featured in the tabloid press, it is important to meet a man like Petras Zelionka who killed more than any tabloid monster and yet sat before us as composed and normal as any grandfather.
    Zelionka took part in many murders in Lithuania, but denies having visited Butrimonys. If not him precisely, then it would have been men like him from the Lithuanian Army who killed Riva Losanskaya’s Jewish neighbours and from whose guns she herself had such a narrow escape.

    In the weeks after the killings at Butrimonys, Riva became increasingly sickened by the behaviour of her fellow villagers, whom she saw profiting from the disappearance of the Jews. She recalls that as soon as she and the other Jews had been marched along to the pits, many of the remaining villagers rushed to the victims’ houses to plunder them. ‘Even the wives of two priests were fighting with each other,’ she says, ‘arguing over who was to have what.’ Riva learnt that one local woman helped undress the Jews at the execution site and then kept their clothes for herself. ‘She didn’t even leave their knickers on, their clothes were so precious to her,’ says Riva. ‘When the Russians came, her children used to go to the cinema wearing those same clothes, sometimes even wearing the ‘ Rabbi’s clothes.’

    Throughout the German occupation Riva and her mother lived in constant fear of denunciation. ‘Many people informed the authorities about the ones who had managed to escape,’ she says. ‘Even the kind-hearted ones did this. One Jew went to see a Russian family hoping that he could stay with them. First, he w~ s given some food, then he was taken to the police and shot along with all the others. Everybody was doing it because they wanted the clothes and they believed that the Jews had lots of gold…But where would all that gold have come from? People didn’t even have enough food, they didn’t have enough potatoes.’

    Riva Losanskaya’s life has been spent searching for an answer to the same question posed by Samuel Willenberg in Treblinka – why? ‘Fifty years have passed and I’m still wondering how people could do such things. I have always respected intelligence, I love and revere intelligent people. But then I saw them killing…Nobody can explain why the Germans did it. They are a cultured nation and have such a fine literature: Goethe, Schiller, Heinrich Heine….’ Even though it was Lithuanian soldiers who shot the Jews of Butrimonys, she blames the Germans more. ‘They were the cause of all our unhappiness. The Lithuanians hadn’t killed any of us before the Germans arrived.’

    The whirlwind of killings the Nazis organized in the first months of the occupation of Lithuania was documented by them in the so-called ‘Jager Report’. This shows a huge increase in the number of Jews killed, especially women and children, from about mid-August 1941. Until 15 August there is no mention of any children killed, but from then on they are killed in their thousands (1609 Jewish children murdered between 18 and 22 August in Kreis Rasainiai alone). Why did this sudden escalation in killings occur? When was the order given for it to happen? If these questions can be answered, they would go some way to helping us understand the decision-making process that led to the Holocaust.

    Could the decision to extend the killing have been taken in principle before the invasion of Russia, but not implemented on the ground until mid-August? Professor Browning makes a powerful argument for this case: ‘Before the invasion, the Einsatzgruppen were not given explicit orders for the total extermination of the Jews on Soviet territory Along with the general incitement to an ideological and racial war, however, they were given the general task of liquidating “potential” enemies. Heydrich’s much-debated directive of 2 July 1941 was a minimal list of all those who had to be liquidated immediately, including all Jews in state and party positions. It is very likely, moreover, that the Einsatzgruppen leaders were told of the future goal of a Judenfrei [Jew-free] Russia through systematic mass murder.’

    But another historian, Professor Philippe Burrin, argues that there is evidence to suggest that the decision to extend the killing could not have been taken before the invasion of Russia. He points to an exchange between Himmler and one of his SS units which started at the end of July. Himmler gave the following order on 30 July 1941 to the 2nd SS Cavalry Regiment in the Pripet Marshes on the south of the front: ‘All Jews must be shot. Drive the female Jews into the swamp.’ On 12 August Sturmbannfuhrer Franz Magill reported: ‘Driving women and children into the swamp was not successful because the swamp was not so deep that sinking could occur. After a depth of 1 metre, for the most part one hit firm ground (probably sand) so that sinking under was not possible.’ This communication, like so much of the documentary evidence surrounding the origin of the Holocaust, is open to different interpretations. For Professor Burrin it is evidence that Himmler does not yet feel able to order the killing of women and children. For Professor Browning it is an instruction from Himmler to kill women and children couched in ambiguous terms which the enthusiastic Magill misunderstands.

    The debate is important because it goes to the heart of Hitler’s motivation in ordering or authorizing the extension of the killing. Browning believes that the impetus for increasing the killing came from a decision Hitler took in mid-July 1941, when he believed that victory over Russia was near. At that point, elated over his conquest, he simply brought forward plans to ‘cleanse’ the new territories of undesirables. In Browning’s words, ‘What had hitherto been seen as a future task was now to be implemented immediately’ Burrin sees it differently. He places the decision to order the escalation at late July or August, when Hitler was in a very different mood – raging at news that the German Army was faltering against the Soviets…………

    Ian Kershaw

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