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Encyclopedia > July 20 Plot

The July 20 Plot was an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler, the dictator of Germany, on July 20, 1944. It was the culmination of the efforts of the German Resistance to overthrow the Nazi regime. Its failure led to the arrest of more than 5,000 people, to the execution of about 200 people and the destruction of the resistance movement. Image File history File links Stauffenberg-signature-head. ... Image File history File links Stauffenberg-signature-head. ... Claus von Stauffenberg Claus Philipp Maria Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg (15 November 1907 – 21 July 1944), German army officer, was one of the leading figures of the July 20 Plot of 1944 to kill Adolf Hitler and seize power in Germany. ... assassin, see Assassin (disambiguation) Jack Ruby assassinated Lee Harvey Oswald in a very public manner. ... Hitler redirects here. ... July 20 is the 201st day (202nd in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar, with 164 days remaining. ... 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday. ... Bust of Colonel Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg (Memorial to the German Resistance, Berlin) The German Resistance refers to those individuals and groups in Nazi Germany who opposed the regime of Adolf Hitler between 1933 and 1945. ... National Socialism redirects here. ...

Contents

Background

Conspiratorial groups planning a coup of some kind had existed in the German Army and the military intelligence organization (the Abwehr) since 1938. Early leaders of these plots included Brigadier-General Hans Oster, head of the Abwehr Military Intelligence Office, a former Army Chief of Staff, General Ludwig Beck, and Field Marshal Erwin von Witzleben. Plans to stage a coup and prevent Hitler from launching a new world war were developed in 1938 and 1939, but were aborted because of the vacillations of the Army leaders, Generals Franz Halder and Walter von Brauchitsch, and the failure of the western powers to take a stand against Hitler's aggressions until 1939. Wehrmacht   (armed forces, literally defence force(s)) was the name of the armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. ... The Abwehr was a German intelligence organization from 1921 to 1944. ... Hans Oster (August 9, 1887 – April 9, 1945) was a career officer in the Wehrmacht and a dedicated opponent of Adolf Hitler and Nazism. ... Ludwig Beck General Ludwig Beck (June 29, 1880 – July 21, 1944) was Chief of Staff of the German Armed forces during the early years of the Nazi regime in Germany before World War II. Born in Biebrich in Hesse-Nassau, he was educated in the conservative Prussian military tradition. ... Job-Wilhelm Georg Erwin von Witzleben (born 4 December 1881 in Breslau; died 8 August 1944 in Berlin, executed) was a German army officer (by 1940 a Generalfeldmarschall) and in the Second World War an Army commander and a resistance fighter in the July 20 Plot. ... Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel, Adolf Hitler, a General Staff officer and General Alfred Jacob NOT Franz Halder Franz Ritter von Halder (June 30, 1884- April 2, 1972) was a German General and the head of the Army General Staff from 1938 until September 1942, when he was dismissed after frequent... Walther von Brauchitsch (October 4, 1881 - October 18, 1948[1][2]) was Commander-in-Chief of the Wehrmacht in the early years of World War II. Von Brauchitsch was commissioned in the Prussian Guard in 1900. ...


In 1941 a new conspiratorial group was formed, led by Colonel Henning von Tresckow, a member of the staff of his uncle, Field Marshal Fedor von Bock, who was commander of Army Group Centre during the invasion of the Soviet Union, Operation Barbarossa. Tresckow systematically recruited oppositionists to the Group’s staff, making it the nerve centre of the Army resistance. Little could be done while Hitler’s armies advanced triumphantly into the western regions of the Soviet Union through 1941 and 1942 – even after the setback before Moscow in December 1941 that brought about the dismissal of both Brauchitsch and Bock. Henning von Tresckow (January 10, 1901 in Magdeburg – July 21, 1944 in Ostrow near BiaÅ‚ystok, Poland) was a Major General in the German Wehrmacht who is known for organizing German resistance against Hitler. ... Generalfeldmarschall Fedor von Bock Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Küstrin, Germany. ... Combatants Germany, Romania, Finland, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia Soviet Union Commanders Adolf Hitler, Ion Antonescu, C.G.E. Mannerheim, Benito Mussolini, Miklós Horthy, Jozef Tiso Joseph Stalin Strength ~3. ... Combatants Nazi Germany Soviet Union Commanders Fedor von Bock, Heinz Guderian Georgy Zhukov, Aleksandr Vasilevsky Strength As of October 1: 1,000,000+ men, 1,700 tanks, 14,000 guns, 950 planes[1] As of October 1: 1,250,000 men, 1,000 tanks, 7,600 guns, 677 planes[2...


During 1942 Oster and Tresckow nevertheless succeeded in rebuilding an effective resistance network. Their most important recruit was General Friedrich Olbricht, head of the General Army Office headquartered at the Bendlerblock in central Berlin, who controlled an independent system of communications to reserve units all over Germany. Linking this asset to Tresckow’s resistance group in Army Group Centre created what appeared to a viable structure for a new effort at organising a coup. General Friedrich Olbricht Friedrich Olbricht (born 4 October 1888 in Leisnig, Saxony; died 21 July 1944 in Berlin) was a German general and one of the plotters involved in the attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler at the Wolfs Lair in East Prussia on 20 July 1944. ... The Bendlerblock is a building in Berlin, near Tiergarten. ...


In late 1942 Tresckow and Olbricht formulated a plan to assassinate Hitler and stage a coup during Hitler's visit to the headquarters of Army Group Centre at Smolensk in March 1943, by placing a bomb on his plane. The bomb did not go off, and a second attempt a few days later, when Hitler visited an exhibition of captured Soviet weaponry in Berlin, also failed. These failures demoralized the conspirators. During 1943 they tried without success to recruit senior Army field commanders such as Field Marshal Erich von Manstein and Field Marshal Gerd von Rundstedt, to support a seizure of power. A view of Smolensk in 1912. ... Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein The neutrality of this article is disputed. ... Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Generalfeldmarschall of the German Army during World War II. He held some of the highest field commands in all phases of the war. ...


Planning a coup

By mid 1943 the tide of war was turning decisively against Germany. The Army plotters and their civilian allies became convinced that Hitler must be assassinated so that a government acceptable to the western Allies could be formed and a separate peace negotiated in time to prevent a Soviet invasion of Germany. In August 1943 Tresckow met a young staff officer, Colonel Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, for the first time. Badly wounded in North Africa, Stauffenberg was a political conservative and a zealous German nationalist with a taste for philosophy. He had at first welcomed the Nazi regime but had become rapidly disillusioned. By 1942 he shared the widespread conviction among Army officers that Germany was being led to disaster and that Hitler must be removed from power. For some time his religious scruples had prevented him from coming to the conclusion that assassination was the correct way to achieve this. After Stalingrad, however, he decided that not assassinating Hitler would be a greater moral evil. He brought a new tone of fanaticism to the ranks of the resistance. Claus von Stauffenberg Claus Philipp Maria Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg (15 November 1907 – 21 July 1944), German army officer, was one of the leading figures of the July 20 Plot of 1944 to kill Adolf Hitler and seize power in Germany. ... Combatants Germany Italy Hungary Romania Slovakia Soviet Union Commanders Maximilian von Weichs Friedrich Paulus # Erich von Manstein Hermann Hoth Italo Garibaldi Gusztav Jany Petre Dumitrescu Constantin Constantinescu Vasiliy Chuikov Aleksandr Vasilyevskiy Georgiy Zhukov Semyon Timoshenko Konstantin Rokossovsky Rodion Malinovsky Strength German Sixth Army German Fourth Panzer Army Romanian Third Army...


Olbricht now put forward to Tresckow and Stauffenberg a new strategy for staging a coup against Hitler. The Reserve Army had an operational plan called Operation Walküre (Valkyrie), which was to be used in the event that the disruption caused by the Allied bombing of German cities caused a breakdown in law and order, or a rising by the millions of slave labourers from occupied countries now being used in German factories. Olbricht suggested that this plan could be used to mobilise the Reserve Army to take control of German cities, disarm the SS and arrest the Nazi leadership, once Hitler had been successfully assassinated. Operation Valkyrie could only be put into effect by General Friedrich Fromm, commander of the Reserve Army, so he must either be won over to the conspiracy or in some way neutralised if the plan was to succeed. Fromm, like many senior officers, knew in general about the military conspiracies against Hitler but neither supported them nor reported them to the Gestapo. Claus von Stauffenberg The July 20 Plot was an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler, the dictator of Germany, on July 20, 1944. ... The Valkyries Vigil, by the Pre-Raphaelite painter Edward Robert Hughes. ... Friedrich Fromm (October 8, 1888 - 1945) was a German army officer, best known as the main person responsible for the executions of the conspirators to assassinate Adolf Hitler. ... This article or section includes a list of works cited or a list of external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ...


During late 1943 and early 1944 there were a series of attempts to get one of the military conspirators near enough to Hitler for long enough to kill him with a bomb or a revolver. But the task was becoming increasingly difficult. As the war situation deteriorated, Hitler no longer appeared in public and rarely visited Berlin. He spent most of his time at his headquarters at the Wolfschanze (Wolf's Lair) near Rastenburg in East Prussia, with occasional breaks at his Bavarian mountain retreat in Berchtesgaden. In both places he was heavily guarded and rarely saw people he did not already know and trust. Himmler and the Gestapo were increasingly suspicious of plots against Hitler, and specifically suspected the officers of the General Staff, which was indeed the place where most of the young officers willing to sacrifice themselves to kill Hitler were located. All these attempts therefore failed, sometimes by a matter of minutes. One of larger bunkers in Wolfsschanze complex. ... Kętrzyn is a town in north-eastern Poland with 30,300 inhabitants (1995). ... East Prussia (German: Ostpreu en; Polish: Prusy Wschodnie; Russian: Восточная Пруссия — Vostochnaya Prussiya) was a province of Kingdom of Prussia, situated on the territory of former Ducal Prussia. ... Berchtesgaden is a town in the German Bavarian Alps. ... Heinrich Himmler Heinrich Himmler (October 7, 1900 - May 23, 1945) was the commander of the German Schutzstaffel and one of the most powerful men in Nazi Germany. ...


By the summer of 1944 the Gestapo was closing in on the conspirators. There was a sense that time was running out, both on the battlefield, where the eastern front was in full retreat and where the Allies had landed in France on 6 June, and in Germany, where the resistance’s room for manoeuvre was rapidly contracting. The belief that this was the last chance for action seized the conspirators. By this time the core of the conspirators had begun to think of themselves as doomed men, whose actions were more symbolic than real. The purpose of the conspiracy came to be seen by some of them as saving the honour of themselves, their families, the Army and Germany through a grand, if futile, gesture, rather than actually altering the course of history. Land on Normandy In military parlance, D-Day is a term often used to denote the day on which a combat attack or operation is to be initiated. ...


One of Tresckow’s aides, Lieutenant Heinrich Graf von Lehndorff-Steinort, wrote to Stauffenberg: “The assassination must be attempted, coûte que coûte [whatever the cost]. Even if it fails, we must take action in Berlin. For the practical purpose no longer matters; what matters now is that the German resistance movement must take the plunge before the eyes of the world and of history. Compared to that, nothing else matters.”[1] Heinrich Graf von Lehndorff-Steinort Heinrich Ahasverus Graf von Lehndorff-Steinort (born 22 June 1909 in Hanover; died 4 September 1944 in Berlin) was a member of the July 20 Plot against Adolf Hitler. ...


In retrospect, it is surprising that these months of plotting by the resistance groups in the Army and the state apparatus, in which dozens of people were involved and of which many more, including very senior Army officers, were aware, apparently totally escaped the attention of the Gestapo. In fact the Gestapo had known since February 1943 of both the Abwehr resistance group under the patronage of Admiral Wilhelm Canaris and of the civilian resistance circle around former Leipzig mayor Carl Goerdeler. If all these people had been arrested and interrogated, the Gestapo might well have uncovered the group based in Army Group Centre as well and the July 20 assassination attempt would never have happened. This raises the possibility that Himmler knew about the plot and, for reasons of his own, allowed it to go ahead. Wilhelm Franz Canaris (January 1, 1887 – April 9, 1945) was a German admiral and head of the Abwehr, the German military intelligence service, from 1935 to 1944. ...   [] (Sorbian/Lusatian: Lipsk) is the largest city in the federal state of Saxony in Germany with a population of over 504,000. ... Carl Friedrich Goerdeler Carl Friedrich Goerdeler (July 31, 1884 _ February 2, 1945) was a conservative German politician and opponent of the Nazi regime. ...


Himmler had at least one conversation with a known oppositionist when, in August 1943, the Prussian Finance Minister Johannes Popitz, who was involved in Goerdeler's network, came to see him and offered him the support of the opposition if he would make a move to displace Hitler and secure a negotiated end to the war.[2] Nothing came of this meeting, but Popitz was not arrested and Himmler apparently did nothing to track down the resistance network which he knew was operating within the state bureaucracy. It is possible that Himmler, who by late 1943 knew that the war was unwinnable, allowed the July 20 plot to go ahead in the knowledge that if it succeeded he would be Hitler's successor, and could then bring about a peace settlement. Popitz was not alone in seeing in Himmler a potential ally. General von Bock advised Tresckow to seek his support, but there is no evidence that he did so. Goerdeler was apparently also in indirect contact with Himmler via a mutual acquaintance Carl Langbehn. Canaris's biographer Heinz Höhne suggests that Canaris and Himmler were working together to bring about a change of regime. All of this remains speculation.[3] Johannes Popitz Johannes Popitz (born 2 December 1884 in Leipzig; died 2 February 1945 in Berlin) was a Prussian finance minister and an opponent of the Third Reich. ... Heinz Höhne (also Hoehne) is a German journalist who specializes in Nazi and intelligence history. ...


July 20

The courtyard at the Bendlerblock, where Stauffenberg, Olbricht and others were executed

On 1 July 1944 Stauffenberg was appointed chief-of-staff to General Fromm at the Reserve Army headquarters on Bendlerstrasse in central Berlin. This position enabled Stauffenberg to attend Hitler’s military conferences, either in East Prussia or at Berchtesgaden, and would thus give him a golden opportunity, perhaps the last that would present itself, to kill Hitler with a bomb or a pistol. Conspirators who had long resisted on moral grounds the idea of killing Hitler now changed their minds – partly because they were hearing reports of the mass murder at Auschwitz of up to 250,000 Hungarian Jews, the culmination of the Nazi Holocaust. Meanwhile new key allies had been gained. These included General Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel, the German military commander in France, who would take control in Paris when Hitler was killed and, it was hoped, negotiate an immediate armistice with the invading Allied armies. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1600x1200, 377 KB) Summary Photo by User:Adam Carr, May 2006 Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby release it into the public domain. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (1600x1200, 377 KB) Summary Photo by User:Adam Carr, May 2006 Licensing I, the creator of this work, hereby release it into the public domain. ... Auschwitz, in English, commonly refers to the Auschwitz concentration camp complex built near the town of Oświęcim, by Nazi Germany during World War II. Rarely, it may refer to the Polish town of Oświęcim (called by the Germans Auschwitz) itself. ... ... It is requested that this article, or a section of this article, be expanded. ...


The plot was now as ready as it would ever be. Twice in early July Stauffenberg attended Hitler’s conferences carrying a bomb in his briefcase. But because the conspirators had decided that Himmler and probably Goring must also be assassinated if the planned mobilisation of Operation Valkyrie was to have any chance of success, he had held back at the last minute because Himmler was not present. In fact, it was unusual for Himmler to attend military conferences. By 15 July, when Stauffenberg again flew to East Prussia, this condition had been dropped. The plan was for Stauffenberg to plant the briefcase with the bomb in Hitler’s conference room with a timer running, excuse himself from the meeting, wait for the explosion, then fly back to Berlin and join the other plotters at the Bendlerblock. Operation Valkyrie would be mobilised, the Reserve Army would take control of Germany and the other Nazi leaders would be arrested. Beck would be appointed head of state, Goerdeler would be Chancellor and Witzleben would be commander-in-chief. The plan was ambitious and depended on a run of very good luck, but it was not totally fanciful.


Again on 15 July the attempt was called off at the last minute, for reasons which are not known because all the participants in the phone conversations which led to the postponement were dead by the end of the year. Stauffenberg, depressed and angry, returned to Berlin. On 18 July rumours reached him that the Gestapo had wind of the conspiracy and that he might be arrested at any time – this was apparently not true, but there was a sense that the net was closing in and that the next opportunity to kill Hitler must be taken because there might not be another. At 10:00 hours on 20 July Stauffenberg flew back to Rastenburg for another Hitler military conference, once again with a bomb in his briefcase. It is remarkable in retrospect that despite Hitler’s mania for security, officers attending his conferences were not searched.


Around 12:10 hours, the conference began. Stauffenberg had previously activated a pencil detonator, inserted it into a two pound block of plastic explosive, organised by Wessel von Freytag-Loringhoven, and placed it inside his briefcase. He then entered the room and placed his briefcase bomb under the table around which Hitler and more than 20 officers had gathered. After ten minutes, Stauffenberg made an excuse and left the room. At 12:40 the bomb went off, demolishing the conference room. Three officers were killed along with at least one other person, but Hitler survived, suffering only minor injuries. It is possible he had been saved because the briefcase had been moved behind the heavy oak leg of the conference table, which deflected the blast. Another theory is that the briefcase was moved by an officer to the other end of the massive table from where Hitler was, because it was in the way, and so the main force of the blast did not reach Hitler. Stauffenberg, seeing the building collapse in smoke and flame, assumed that Hitler was dead, leapt into a staff car with his aide Werner von Haeften, and made a dash for the airfield before the alarm could be raised. By 13:00 hours he was airborne. Introduced during World War II, a pencil detonator or time pencil is a chemically activated time fuze designed to be connected to a detonator or short length of safety fuse. ... A C-4 plastic explosive. ... Wessel Freiherr Freytag von Loringhoven, commonly known as Wessel von Freytag-Loringhoven (10 November 1899 – died 26 July 1944), was a colonel in the German General Staff of the Wehrmacht and a member of the German resistance against Adolf Hitler. ... Werner Karl von Haeften (9 October 1908 - 20 July 1944) was an Oberleutnant in the Wehrmacht, who took part in the military-based conspiracy against Hitler known as the July 20 Plot. ...


By the time Stauffenberg’s plane reached Berlin at about 15:00, General Erich Fellgiebel, an officer at Rastenburg who was in on the plot, had phoned the Bendlerblock and told the plotters that Hitler had survived the explosion. This was a fatal step (literally so for Fellgiebel and many others), because the Berlin plotters immediately lost their nerve, and judged, probably correctly, that the plan to mobilise Operation Valkyrie would have no chance of succeeding once the officers of the Reserve Army knew that Hitler was alive. There was more confusion when Stauffenberg’s plane landed and he phoned from the airport to say that Hitler was in fact dead. The Bendlerblock plotters did not know whom to believe. Finally at 16:00 Olbricht issued the orders for Operation Valkyrie to be mobilised. The vacillating General Fromm, however, phoned Field-Marshal Wilhelm Keitel at the Wolfs Lair and was assured that Hitler was alive. Keitel demanded to know Stauffenberg’s whereabouts. This told Fromm that the plot had been traced to his headquarters, and that he was in mortal danger. Fromm replied that he thought Stauffenburg was with Hitler. Erich Fellgiebel Fritz Erich Fellgiebel (born 4 October 1886 in Pöpelwitz near Breslau, Silesia, now Popowice near WrocÅ‚aw in Poland; died 4 September 1944 in Berlin-Plötzensee) was a German officer and resistance fighter in the Third Reich. ... Generalfeldmarschall Wilhelm Keitel Wilhelm Bodewin Johann Gustav Keitel (September 22, 1882 - October 16, 1946) was a German field marshal (Generalfeldmarschall) and a senior military leader during World War II. // Keitel was born in Helmscherode, Brunswick, German Empire, the son of Carl Keitel, a middle-class landowner, and his wife Apollonia...


At 16:40 Stauffenberg and Haeften arrived at the Bendlerblock. Fromm now changed sides and attempted to have Stauffenberg arrested, but Olbricht and Stauffenberg restrained him at gunpoint. By this time Himmler had taken charge of the situation and had issued orders countermanding Olbricht’s mobilisation of Operation Valkyrie. In many places the coup was going ahead, led by officers who believed that Hitler was dead. The Propaganda Ministry on the Wilhelmstrasse, with Joseph Goebbels inside, was surrounded by troops - but Goebbels's phone was not cut off, another fatal error. In Paris Stülpnagel issued orders for the arrest of the SS and SD commanders. In Vienna, Prague and many other places troops occupied Nazi Party officers and arrested Gauleiters and SS officers. Wilhelmstraße (William street) in Berlin became during the 19th century the governmental neighbourhood of Prussia. ... Paul Joseph Goebbels (29 October 1897 – 1 May 1945) was a German politician and Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda during the National Socialist regime from 1933 to 1945. ... Sicherheitsdienst (SD) sleeve insignia. ...


The decisive moment came at 19:00, when Hitler was sufficiently recovered to make phone calls. He was able to phone Goebbels at the Propaganda Ministry. Goebbels arranged for Hitler to speak to the commander of the troops surrounding the Ministry, Major Otto Remer, and assure him that he was still alive. Hitler ordered Remer to regain control of the situation in Berlin. At 20:00 a furious Witzleben arrived at the Bendlerblock and had a bitter argument with Stauffenberg, who was still insisting that the coup could go ahead. Witzleben left shortly afterwards. At around this time the planned seizure of power in Paris was aborted when Kluge, who had recently been appointed commander-in-chief in the west, learned that Hitler was alive, changed sides with alacrity and had Stülpnagel arrested.


The less resolute members of the conspiracy in Berlin also now began to change sides. Fighting broke out in the Bendlerblock between officers supporting and opposing the coup, and Stauffenberg was wounded. By 23:00 Fromm had regained control, hoping by a show of zealous loyalty to save his own skin. Beck, realising the game was up, shot himself – the first of many suicides in the coming days. Fromm declared that he had convened a court-martial consisting of himself, and had sentenced Olbricht, Stauffenberg, Haeften and another officer, Albrecht Mertz von Quirnheim, to death. At 00:10 on 21 July they were shot in the courtyard outside, possibly to prevent them from revealing Fromm's involvement. Others would have been executed as well, but at 00:30 the SS led by Otto Skorzeny arrived on the scene and further executions were forbidden. Fromm went off to see Goebbels to claim credit for suppressing the coup. He was immediately arrested. Albrecht Ritter Mertz von Quirnheim Albrecht Ritter Mertz von Quirnheim (born 25 March 1905 in Munich; died 20 July 1944 in Berlin) was a German officer and a resistance fighter in Nazi Germany who was involved in the July 20 Plot against Hitler. ... After Operation Greif, Otto Skorzeny was labelled the most dangerous man in Europe Otto Skorzeny (June 12, 1908 - July 6[1] 1975) was an Obersturmbannführer in the German Waffen-SS during World War II. After fighting on the Eastern Front, he is known as the commando leader who rescued...


Aftermath

Over the coming weeks Himmler’s Gestapo, driven by a furious Hitler, rounded up nearly everyone who had had the remotest connection with the July 20 plot. The discovery of letters and diaries in the homes and offices of those arrested revealed the plots of 1938, 1939 and 1943, and this led to further rounds of arrests, including that of Halder, who finished the war in a concentration camp. Under Himmler’s new Sippenhaft (blood guilt) laws, all the relatives of the principal plotters were also arrested. Many people killed themselves, including Tresckow and Kluge. Stülpnagel also tried to commit suicide, but survived and was subsequently hanged. Fabian Graf zu Dohna, arrested in July 1944, aged 18, as a result of his fathers involvement in the July 20 plot. ...


Very few of the plotters tried to escape, or to deny their guilt when arrested. Those who survived interrogation were given perfunctory trials before the People’s Court and its judge Roland Freisler. Eventually some 5,000 people were arrested[4] and about 200 were executed [5] – not all of them connected with the July 20 plot, since the Gestapo used the occasion to settle scores with many other people suspected of opposition sympathies. After 3 February 1945, when Freisler was killed in a USAAF air raid, there were no more formal trials, but as late as April, with the war weeks away from its end, Canaris’s diary was found, and many more people were implicated. Executions continued down to the last days of the war. Judge Freisler Roland Freisler (October 30, 1893 – February 3, 1945) was a prominent and notorious Nazi German judge. ...


Popular culture

In Season Five of the television series Highlander in the episode The Valkyrie, two immortals, Duncan MacLeod & Ingrid Henning were part of the plot. In Berlin Stauffenberg, Duncan & Ingrid discussed the plan while dressed in Nazi Uniforms. Later on July 20, 1944 Stauffenberg, Duncan & Ingrid drove up to the bunker and introduced themselves to a waiting Field Marshal. Then Hitler arrived and went into the bunker. Stauffenberg grabbed his briefcase from his automobile and broke the glass to start the fuse and then he & Duncan entered the bunker, while Ingrid stayed with the car. Inside Hitler was ranting as usual and then Stauffenberg made an excuse and left the room with the briefcase of explosives. One of the soldiers in the room accidentally kicked the briefcase and then picked it up and placed it on a chair. Another officer next to him moved the briefcase across the room while Duncan watched. Duncan then tried to edge his way through the room to get the bomb and get it back closer to Hitler. But Duncan was noticed by the others in the room so Duncan dived for the briefcase before it could explode. The scene then cuts to the outside where Ingrid watched the explosion while lighting a cigarette. She then sees survivors stagger out of the bunker, including Hitler. Ingrid grabs for a gun to shoot Hitler, but she does not have the nerve to fire and was then shot by the soldiers and Ingrid was killed. Being immortal both Duncan & Ingrid revived from their deaths and were reunited in 1997. This article contains episode summaries for the first season of the American drama/adventure television series Highlander ; the seasons episodes began airing 23 September 1996 and finished on 19 May 1997. ... Duncan MacLeod, also known as the Highlander, is a fictional character from the Highlander (series) universe. ...


Trivia

The first trials were held in the peoples court on 7 and 8 August 1944. Hitler had ordered that those found guilty be "hung like cattle".[6] The treatment that had been dealt out to those executed as a result of the Rote Kapelle was that of slow strangulation using suspension from a rope attached to a slaughterhouse meathook. For the July 20 plotters piano wire was used instead. Die Rote Kapelle (the Red Orchestra) was the name given by the Gestapo to two Communist resistance rings in Nazi-occupied Europe during World War II. The Gestapo used the name Red Orchestra to refer to the Schulze-Boysen / Harnack group, an anti-Hitler resistance movement in Germany with international...


The executions and trials were reportedly filmed and later reviewed by Hitler and his entourage. A version of these films was later combined into a 30 minute movie by Goebbels and also shown to cadets at the Lichterfelde cadet school but viewers supposedly walked out of the screening in disgust.[7]


Sources

This article is based mainly on the account in Joachim Fest's book Plotting Hitler’s Death: The German Resistance to Hitler 1933-1945 (English edition Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1996), with additional material from Ian Kershaw’s two volumes Hitler 1889-1936: Hubris (W.W.Norton, 1998) and Hitler 1936-1945: Nemesis (W.W.Norton, 2000) and various other works. Acknowledgment must be made also to Roger Manvell and Heinrich Frankel, whose The Canaris Conspiracy: The Secret Resistance to Hitler in the German Army (1969) was a pioneering work. Joachim C. Fest (December 8, 1926 – September 11, 2006) was a German journalist and author, best known in English-speaking countries for his work with Albert Speer while writing his memoirs and his biography of Adolf Hitler. ... Professor Sir Ian Kershaw (born April 29, 1943 in Oldham, Lancashire, England) is a British historian, noted for his biographies of Adolf Hitler. ... Roger Manvell Roger Manvell was born in England on October 10th, 1909 and died on November 30th, 1987. ...


Notes

  1. ^ Joachim Fest, Plotting Hitler’s Death: The German Resistance to Hitler 1933-1945, 236
  2. ^ Joachim Fest, Plotting Hitler's Death, 228
  3. ^ Himmler's contacts with the opposition and his possible motives are discussed by Peter Padfield, Himmler, 419-424
  4. ^ The Gestapo claimed 7,000 arrests. This can be found in William L. Shirer's Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, ch. 29
  5. ^ Ian Kershaw, Hitler 1936-1945: Nemesis, 693
  6. ^ See Shirer ch. 29
  7. ^ Shirer attributes this anecdote to Allen Dulles in his book Germany's Underground P.83

Shirer after winning a National Book Award in 1961 for his The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, pictured with fellow authors and award winners Conrad Richter and Randall Jarrell. ... Book cover The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by journalist William L. Shirer was the first definitive history of Nazi Germany in English. ... Allen Welsh Dulles (April 23, 1893 – January 29, 1969) was an influential director of the Central Intelligence Agency from 1953 to 1961 and a member of the Warren Commission. ...

See also

This is a list of members of the July 20 plot, a coup détat which involved a failed attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
July 20 Plot - .ceneus.notes (470 words)
The July 20 Plot was a failed coup d'état which involved an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
It was initiated on July 20, 1944, by officers of the Wehrmacht.
The leader of the plot was Oberst Claus von Stauffenberg.
July 20 Plot - definition of July 20 Plot in Encyclopedia (488 words)
The July 20 Plot was a failed coup d'état which involved an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
It was initiated on July 20, 1944, by officers of the Wehrmacht.
The leader of the plot was Oberst Claus von Stauffenberg.
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