When Hitler gave the ok to slaughter an estimated 6 million Jews during the Holocaust, it was one of, if not the worst atrocity any man has ever committed against humankind. Which is why a new report coming out of the Jewish Voice newspaper in Germany is utterly shocking.
A recently found note signed by the infamous SS leader Heinrich Himmler stated that one Ernst Hess should be saved and protected, “as per the Fuhrer’s wishes.” If you’re as shocked as me, I understand. Even with this amnesty supplied by Hitler, the fervor that had taken over Germany at the time won out, and eventually Hess was forced into years of hard labor at a concentration camp. Even a years worth or protection for a German Jew is surprising, especially granted by Hitler himself. So why did Hitler do it?
Hitler and Hess were in the same infantry unit while serving in World War I, and Hess was even Hitler’s superior at one point. Just because they served together doesn’t mean they were friends. Many of the men who served with Hitler described him as “quiet, with no friends.” But Hess had stayed close to others he served with and Fritz Wiedemann, who eventually became on of Hitler’s most trusted aides helped Hess get in touch with Heinrich Lammers, the Head of the Reich Chancellery.
Ten days before Christmas, the German Interior Ministry acquitted itself of an embarrassing duty. It published a list of all former members of the German government with a Nazi past.
The Left Party’s parliamentary group had forced the government to come clean about Germany’s past by submitting a parliamentary inquiry. Bundestag document 17/8134 officially announced, for the first time, something which had been treated as a taboo in the halls of government for decades: A total of 25 cabinet ministers, one president and one chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany — as postwar Germany is officially known — had been members of Nazi organizations.
Read the rest of the article at From Dictatorship to Democracy: The Role Ex-Nazis Played in Early West Germany – SPIEGEL ONLINE – News – International.
Story by By Ralf Beste, Georg Bönisch, Thomas Darnstaedt, Jan Friedmann, Michael Fröhlingsdorf and Klaus Wiegrefe – Spiegel Online
Saul David , professor at the University of Buckingham explains how Britain’s production of acetone in World War I helped increase the supply of munitions and lead to the end of the war in this article found on the BBC News website.
History tells us that a general can move and feed an army as efficiently as he likes but the real litmus test is the battlefield.
All the energy he expends getting his men to the front line fit and healthy counts for nothing if they don’t have the right equipment.
What they need, above all, is sufficient ammunition – yet there were moments during the war when a shortage of artillery shells meant the guns almost fell silent.
Given the unprecedented scale of the conflict, it was bound to take time for each side’s peacetime armaments industry to adjust.
Each of the major combatants, moreover, had its own limits to production.
Read the rest of the article at BBC News – How Germany lost the WWI arms race.
I have always wondered about how Austria joined with Nazi Germany in the beginning of World War II and what the sentiment of the Austrians were at the time. Dr. Walter R. Roberts wrote a great article for American Diplomacy. I strongly encourage you to read it.
At a conference in Washington, several months ago, the Austrian ambassador to the United States mentioned that Mexico was the only country that formally protested the March 11, 1938 incorporation of Austria into Nazi-Germany. He was right and it reminded me of that fateful day when I lived in Vienna. Mexico’s demarche also prompted me to think about the responses of other countries to the takeover and of the actions of the Austrian and German governments.
Mexico submitted its protest to the League of Nations in Geneva on March 19, 1938. The League of Nations records show that no other country acted. On June 11, 1938, Chile expressed its regret that Austria had disappeared as a member of the League of Nations and the representative of the Spanish Republican government at the League accused Nazi Germany on the same day, stating that “they have devoured Austria; they are trying to reduce Spain to ashes; they menace the very existence of Czechoslovakia.” On September 21, 1938, six months after the annexation, the League of Nations revealed that in March the Soviet Union had unsuccessfully attempted to rally Britain and France to join the USSR to prevent Austria’s demise.