Showing posts with label Resistance. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Resistance. Show all posts

The Resistance in Munich

Platz der Opfer des Nationalsozialismus
Square for the Victims of National Socialism
The site after the war with the monument to Schiller dating from 1863 which had been moved to the northeastern end of Maximiliansplatz for traffic reasons in 1959. A temporary memorial was placed on the site in 1965. After Andreas Sobeck’s memorial had been erected in 1985 the granite stone was given a new inscription and moved to Platz der Freiheit (Freedom Square) in the district of Neuhausen, where it serves as a memorial to the members of the resistance who fell victim to the Nazi regime.
Looking as if it was set up as a mere afterthought, an eternal flame burns in memory of victims of the Nazis. When it was first erected, it was shut off each night until enough of a protest had been made. By October 2012 it was missing altogether.

In March 2008 a Mexican tourist posed the Nazi salute at Platz der Opfer des Nationalsozialismus whilst her husband took a photo. A passer-by reported them to the police and they were fined €450: Mexikanerin posiert mit «Hitler-Gruß» an Münchner NS-Gedenkstätte

Palace of Justice (Justizpalast)
The left from a 19th century postcard

During the National Socialist era and today. This was the site of the Nazi's "People's Court." Members of the White Rose (Weiße Rose) were tried here on February 22, 1943.

After the war
Comparison of the building after the war and today
Nazi judge Roland Freisler presiding over the 1944 trial for the July Plotters. Nicknamed "Raving Roland", Freisler was infamous for his bombastic courtroom behaviour. He mostly issued death or lifetime prison sentences, having reached his verdict before the trial actually began. According to Norman Davies in his book No Simple Victory: World War II in Europe, 1939-1945 (p. 308), Freisler was killed by a British bomb that came through the ceiling of his courtroom as he was trying two women, both of whom survived the explosion.

Commemorative plaque in the Palace of Justice for Jewish lawyers persecuted by the Nazis, unveiled on 30 November 1998. The unveiling marked the sixtieth anniversary of the day when Jewish lawyers were forbidden to practice their profession, thus excluding them from the legal profession and robbing them of their livelihood. A directive issued by the Bavarian Minister of Justice Hans Frank in April 1933 had already required Jewish lawyers to present a special pass to gain entry to the court building. The plaque, initiated by the Munich Chamber of Lawyers, commemorates by name those Munich lawyers who were persecuted, driven out and murdered on account of their Jewish background.

Commemorative plaque for Father Rupert Mayer, a Jesuit priest and leading figure of the Catholic Widerstand in the Third Reich in Munich where he spoke out against the persecution of Christian groups from the pulpit of St. Michael's in the town centre. On 16 May 1937, the Gestapo ordered him to stop speaking in public which he obeyed whilst continuing to preach in church, speaking out against anti-Catholic baiting campaigns and fought against Nazi church policy. He preached that Man must obey God more than men. His protests against the Nazis landed him several times in Landsberg prison (the same gaol in which Hitler spent almost 9 months after the Beer Hall Putsch in 1924), and in Sachsenhausen concentration camp under the Kanzelparagraphen, a series of 19th-century laws that forbade the clergy to engage in political activities. From late 1940, he was interned in Ettal Monastery, mainly because the Nazis were afraid that he would die in the concentration camp, and thereby become a martyr. In 1987 he was beatified by Pope John Paul II.
The permanent exhibition in the historic courtroom 216 (now 253) of the Palace of Justice with portraits of Willi Graf, Prof. Kurt Huber, Alexander Schmorell, Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl and Christoph Probst.  It was in this room that the death sentences for Professor Kurt Huber, Willi Graf and Alexander Schmorell were pronounced on 19 April 1943. During the opening ceremony Munich’s former Mayor Hans-Jochen Vogel said the most important thing about this exhibition was not that it provided an- other memorial to the White Rose – ten years after the opening of the DenkStätte Weiße Rose (White Rose Commemorative Site) at Munich University – but rather “that it is being staged in this room”. The documentation of the trial also signals an increasing willingness on the part of the German judiciary to critically examine its own past, including the fact that many members of the Nazi judiciary remained in their posts even after 1945.

The Bürgersaal Church in the middle of the pedestrian zone in the centre of Munich focusses on Father Rupert Mayer.
The prayer and assembly hall of the Marian Men’s Congregation was one of the places where Mayer preached and is also where he is buried. For some it has become a place of pilgrimage and remembrance. After several trials and detention in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp the unyielding priest was held under arrest at the Ettal Monastery in Upper Bavaria until the end of the war. After the war he returned to Munich, where he died on All Saints’ Day 1945 after suffering a stroke whilst giving a sermon. He was initially buried at the Jesuit Cemetery in Pullach, but three years later his remains were transferred to the crypt of the Bürgersaal Church in a ceremony attended by 120,000 people. 
The museum at the back of the church documenting the life and work of the pastor, who was widely respected and became a symbol of Catholic resistance to the Nazi regime, was opened in 2008.
 The Schutzengel (Guardian Angel) by Ignaz Günther, 1763

Munich University
After the Great War in the early Summer of 1919, Hitler
became active in the Bavarian army persuading German troops that Communism was wrong. Part of his training consisted in attending a course at Munich University. At this point he became acquainted with the völkisch (i.e. radical nationalist and racialist) thinker, Gottfried Feder, who was helping to organise the event. The lectures Hitler attended there included titles such as: ‘Socialism in Theory and Practice’, ‘Russia and the Bolshevik Dictatorship’, ‘German History since the Reformation’, ‘Germany 1870–1900’, ‘The Meaning of the Armed Forces’, ‘The Connection between Domestic and Foreign Policy’, ‘Foreign Policy since the End of the War’, ‘Price Policy in the National Economy’, ‘The Forced Economy in Bread and Grain’ and ‘Bavaria and the Unity of the Reich’. Many of these topics could have served as headings for the talks Hitler himself gave in the early 1920s. They must have made a massive impression on a man who unquestionably absorbed information like a sponge.
This was also the site of the apprehension of Hans and Sophie Scholl of the White Rose (Weiße Rose), a non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany, consisting of a number of students from the University of Munich and their philosophy professor. The group became known for an anonymous leaflet campaign, lasting from June 1942 until February 1943, that called for active opposition to Hitler's regime. The core of the group comprised of students from this university- Sophie Scholl, her brother Hans Scholl, Alex Schmorell, Willi Graf, Christoph Probst, Traute Lafrenz, Katharina Schueddekopf, Lieselotte (Lilo) Berndl, and Falk Harnack. Most were in their early twenties. A professor of philosophy and musicology, Kurt Huber, was also an associate with their cause.
The Scholls and Probst were the first to stand trial before the
Volksgerichtshof-the People's Court that tried political offences against the Nazi German state-on 22nd February 1943.
They were found guilty of treason and Roland Freisler, head judge of the court, sentenced them to death. The three were beheaded. All three were noted for the courage with which they faced their deaths, particularly Sophie, who remained firm despite intense interrogation (however, reports that she arrived at the trial with a broken leg from torture are false), and said to Freisler during the trial, "You know as well as we do that the war is lost. Why are you so cowardly that you won't admit it?"
On the right is the trailer for the multi-award winning drama Sophie Scholl: The Final Days. Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, Sophie Scholl is played by Julia Jentsch in a luminous performance as the young coed-turned-fearless activist. Armed with long-buried historical records of her incarceration, director Marc Rothemund accurately recreated the last six days of Sophie Scholls life from arrest to interrogation, trial and sentence.
Denkmal Flugblätter Weiße Rose

Just in front of the entrance on Geschwister-Scholl- Platz is this memorial to the Weiße Rose showing biographies and reproductions of the last leaflets. The pamphlets, portrait photos and historical texts reproduced on ceramic tiles are made to look as if they had been dropped accidentally and trodden into the ground. They invite passers-by to pause for a moment and follow the traces of the White Rose.The memorial was conceived by the Berlin sculptor Robert Schmidt-Matt in 1988 as an entry for the third “RischArt Prize”, an art competition staged by a large Munich bakery. Originally intended as a temporary installation, in 1990 it was purchased by the City of Munich and the university thanks to the initiative of the Weiße Rose Stiftung e.V. (White Rose Foundation) and a petition started by the medical student Gregor van Scherpenberg and has remained on show to the public ever since. The pavement memorial is not the only one keeping alive the memory of the White Rose near the main university building. As early as November 1945 and hence before the university forecourt on the western side of Ludwigstraße was renamed Geschwister- Scholl-Platz, the then Minister of Culture Franz Fendt announced the city’s intention to erect a memorial to the resistance group at this location. The plain plaque made of Jura marble and designed by Theodor Georgii was mounted the following year next to the entrance to the main assembly hall. The Latin inscription commemorates the seven members of the White Rose who were executed as martyrs and who had had to die an inhumane death because of their humanity. However, only the date reveals that they died under the Nazi regime. The text ends with a quotation from the “Epistulae morales” of the Roman philosopher Seneca: “It is only in this way that the true spirit can be tested, – the spirit that will never consent to come under the jurisdiction of things external to our- selves.” In 1957 the plaque was moved to the wall of the northern upper gallery – the place from which Hans and Sophie Scholl dropped their pamphlets into the inner courtyard and where another memorial was unveiled during the celebrations to mark the restoration of the courtyard the following year.
On February 18, nearly two thousand copies of this flyer were distributed by Hans and Sophie Scholl in broad daylight throughout the university building on Ludwigstrasse and were thrown over the balcony of the inner, glass-covered light well. They were observed by a caretaker, who immediately took them to the university rector, Professor Walther Wüst, a Colonel in the ϟϟ and an intimate of Himmler’s. Wüst held the two in his office until the Gestapo came to take them away. Hans and Sophie Scholl together with Christoph Probst were tried before the People’s Court on February 22. Graf, Schmorell, and Huber followed a few months later. (Schmorell had tried to flee to Switzerland, but had been hindered by deep snow. A former girlfriend, Gisela Schertling, allegedly betrayed him after recognizing him in a Munich air raid shelter. The sentence for all was death by guillotine. When Hans put his head on the block, he shouted: “Long live freedom!” Sophie said to her parents, who had come to say good-bye from Ulm: “This will make waves.” But as courageous as her remarks were at the time, they were not prescient.
Kater (129) Hitler Youth
As early as November 1945 and hence before the university forecourt on the western side of Ludwigstraße was renamed Geschwister- Scholl-Platz, the then Minister of Culture Franz Fendt announced the city’s intention to erect a memorial to the resistance group at this location. The plain plaque made of Jura marble and designed by Theodor Georgii was mounted the following year next to the entrance to the main assembly hall. The Latin inscription commemorates the seven members of the White Rose who were executed as martyrs and who had had to die an inhumane death because of their humanity. However, only the date reveals that they died under the Nazi regime. The text ends with a quotation from the “Epistulae morales” of the Roman philosopher Seneca: “It is only in this way that the true spirit can be tested, – the spirit that will never consent to come under the jurisdiction of things external to ourselves.” In 1957 the plaque was moved to the wall of the northern upper gallery – the place from which Hans and Sophie Scholl dropped their pamphlets into the inner courtyard and where another memorial was unveiled during the celebrations to mark the restoration of the courtyard the following year.
In the atrium upon which the leaflets had been dropped is a permanent exhibition to them- “The DenkStätte Weiße Rose” was opened in a room below the inner courtyard on 28 June 1997. The site documents in an impressive way the life and work of the resistance group as well as the intellectual environment in which it operated. The memorial site receives several thousand visitors every year, including many students (including my own, shown here during the ISTA 2012 tour, from Germany and abroad. Around the atrium one will find a single bronze relief by Lothar Dietz on the western side of the courtyard showing the seven resistance fighters as stylised figures portrayed as a silent procession of sacrificial victims, and a bronze bust of Sophie Scholl alone in the northwestern corner of the courtyard, made by Nicolai Tregor. The bust was likewise initiated and financed by the Weiße Rose Stiftung e.V. and was unveiled on 22 February 2005, the anniversary of the execution of Hans and Sophie Scholl and Christoph Probst. The unveiling was done by the actress Julia Jentsch, who played Sophie Scholl in Marc Rothemund’s prize-winning film Sophie Scholl – Die letzten Tage (Sophie Scholl – The Final Days).
Two of my students wrote their IBDP internal assessments on Sophie Scholl and the White Rose.
Giving a tour of the University for the International Schools Theatre Association's ISTA 2012, accompanied by students

Residence of the Scholls
Near Munich University at Franz-Joseph-Strasse 13 is where the Scholls had lived, with only a plaque on the wall serving to remind people. When Drake Winston and I visited, a white rose had been stuck under it:

 The members of the White Rose, particularly Hans and Sophie Scholl, have become the most famous and most admired members of the German resistance. Munich alone now has almost thirty sites to keep their memory alive, whether in the form of memorials and street names or institutions named after them. Since 1980 the Bavarian branch of the German Booksellers’ and Publishers’ Association and the city’s Department of Art and Culture have awarded an annual “Geschwister-Scholl Prize” whose prize-giving ceremony is held in the main assembly hall of the Ludwig Maximilian University.

Directly in front of the Staatskanzlei is the Memorial for the Resistance
Leo Kronbrust’s memorial was unveiled on 24 July 1996 by the Bavarian Minister president Dr. Edmund Stoiber. It is engraved on one side with a line of block letters reading "Zum erinnern zum gedenken" ("To Recall and to Commemorate") under which is a reproduction of a handwritten letter by Generalfeldmarschall Erwin von Witzleben who was arrested the day after the attempted July plot. 
Wir wollen hier nicht urteilen über die verschiedenen möglichen Staatsformen, nur eines will eindeutig und klar herausgehoben werden: jeder Mensch hat einen Anspruch auf einen brauchbaren und gerechten Staat, der die Freiheit des Einzelnen als auch das Wohl der Gesamtheit sichert.
Freiheit der Rede, Freiheit des Bekenntnisses, Schutz des einzelnen Bürgers vor der Willkür verbrecherischer Gewaltstaaten.
Das sind die Grundlagen des neuen Europa.
(We will not pass judgement on the various possible forms of government as only one will be raised clear and unambiguously: every person has a right to a useful and just state that guarantees the freedom of the individual and to he general welfareFreedom of speech, freedom of religion, the protection of individual citizens from the arbitrary will of criminal regimes of violenceThese are the foundations of the new Europe.)
During his trial he was forced to appear in court without his belt and false teeth. On August 8, 1944 he was executed by being hanged by piano wire from a meat hook.
Although defined as the central Bavarian memorial for all the resistance fighters who fell victim to the Nazi regime, the memorial conveys an in- complete picture. It fails, for example, to mention the Social Democratic and Communist resistance fighters or individuals like Georg Elser. Since the 1990s the memories of these resistance fighters have been kept alive above all by citizens’ initiatives.

Site of the Bürgerbräukeller
The Bürgerbräukeller in 1923 and after the 1939 assassination attempt.
The Bürgerbräukeller was one of the large Munich beer halls located on Rosenheimer Street. Today, the Hilton Munich City Hotel is on the site. From 1920 to 1923 it was one of the Nazis' preferred gathering places and it was there, on 8 November 1923, that Hitler launched the so-called Beer Hall Putsch.
Hitler decided to mobilise his forces for the night of 10–11 November 1923 with the aim of marching on the government in Munich and then on to Berlin. When Commissioner Kahr called a meeting in the Bürgerbräukeller for 8 November, Hitler and his entourage feared they would be upstaged. While Kahr was in the middle of a rambling speech denouncing Marxism, Hitler and a handful of followers burst in.
Jumping onto the podium, he fired a shot at the ceiling and announced that the building was surrounded by 600 heavily armed men. He said the national revolution was under way. In due course Field Marshal Ludendorff, a German hero from the First World War and the darling of the nation’s radical right, turned up wearing full dress uniform in order to lend support to Hitler.
This was the logical culmination of Hitler’s beer hall politics. It was also the action of a man who believed passionately in the German nation and wanted to hold it together at all costs. It was a step his audiences expected him to take.
Housden (54-55) Hitler- Study of a Revolutionary?
After Hitler seized power in 1933, he commemorated each anniversary of the failed rebellion by giving a speech in the Bürgerbräukeller to the surviving veterans of the Putsch.
Hitler speaking at the Bürgerbräukeller on November 9, 1938- night of Reichskristallnacht.
In 1939, an anti-Nazi workman, Georg Elser, concealed a time bomb in the Bürgerbräukeller, set to go off during Hitler's speech on 8 November. The bomb exploded, killing seven people and injuring sixty-three, but Hitler escaped unharmed; he had cut his speech short and left about half an hour early. Elser was arrested, imprisoned for 5 ½ years and executed shortly before the end of the war. The building suffered severe structural damage from Elser's bomb and was never rebuilt. In subsequent years, Hitler held his annual Pustch commemoration gatherings at the Löwenbräukeller.
Few now accept Bullock's original claims in Hitler: A Study in Tyranny (567-8) of collusion which he himself disavowed in his later book Hitler and Stalin: Parallel Lives, that
Elser, who had been given the photograph of the Biirgerbraukeller and released a quarter of a mile
from the Swiss border, was arrested as soon as he tried to cross it. The German Press seized on his Communist connexions, and a lurid picture was drawn of a conspiracy in which Otto Strasser as well as the British Secret Service figured prominently. At one time a big trial was to have been staged, with the two kidnapped British agents in the dock, and Elser as the chief witness carefully coached to prove that the assassination had been organized by the British. The fact that the trial was never held suggests that, in some way, the Gestapo gambit had failed. The timing had been a little too perfect, and the German people remained stolidly sceptical of their Fuehrer's providential escape.
The building was eventually demolished in 1979 and today there is a memorial plaque dedicated to Elser. It reads: "An dieser Stelle, im ehemaligen Bürgerbräukeller, versuchte der Schreiner Johann Georg Elser am 8. November 1939 ein Attentat auf Adolf Hitler. Er wollte damit dem Terror-Regime der Nationalsozialisten ein Ende setzen. Das Vorhaben scheiterte. Johann Georg Elser wurde nach 5 1/2 Jahren Haft am 9. April 1945 im Konzentrationslager Dachau ermordet." (Here, in the former Bürgerbräukeller, the carpenter Johann Georg Elser made an assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler 8 November 1939. He wanted to set thereby an end to the terror regime of the National Socialists. The project failed. Johann Georg Elser was murdered after 5 1/2 years detention on 9 April 1945 in the concentration camp Dachau.
Elser's apartment
The non-descript address here at #94 Turkenstr. was where, in 1939, Georg Elser rented a room before attempting to blow up Hitler at the Burgerbraukeller in November, 1939. Nearby a square is named in his honour.
Between 1933 and 1945 tens of thousands of Germans were actively involved in various forms of resistance to the Nazi regime and many thousands suffered death or long periods of incarceration in prison or concentration camp as a result. Among these actions were a series of concerted efforts to overthrow the regime between 1938 and 1944. They were undertaken by a number of partially inter-linked circles, consisting mainly of army officers, senior civil servants, clergy and individuals formerly associated with the labour movement. Their actions culminated in the unsuccessful attempt to assassinate Hitler by planting a bomb in his military headquarters in East Prussia on 20 July 1944. Though the bomb went off, Hitler survived. It is these efforts and the people associated with them that have been the main focus of interest, both for historians and the wider public, because they represented the form of resistance most likely to succeed in destroying Nazism; these men had thought longest and hardest about the alternatives to Hitler and it is they who form the subject of this book. However, we should not forget that there were many other resisters, unconnected with these conspiracies, such as the simple Württemberg carpenter, Georg Elser, who very nearly killed Hitler with a bomb in a Munich beer hall in November 1939. They showed equal courage and commitment in their resistance.
The Memory Loops link to this site is:!/342/ which provides information from primary sources about Elser.

Unlike those of the White Rose, the resistance efforts of Georg Elser, who attempted to assassinate Hitler by planting a bomb in Munich’s Bürgerbräukeller on 8 November 1939 and was shot in Dachau concentration camp on 9 April 1945, for a long time went unacknowledged; nor was he himself commemorated. Starting in the late 1960s several attempts were made to have a street named after Elser. It was not until January 1997, however, that a small square off Türkenstraße that Elser had passed every day on his way to the Bürgerbräukeller was named Georg-Elser-Platz, chiefly thanks to the unflagging efforts of the Munich Georg Elser Initiative.
To mark the seventieth anniversary of the assassination attempt in 2009, moreover, a permanent art installation mounted on the façade of the school building on Türkenstraße adjacent to the square was also dedicated to Georg Elser. The neon lettering reading “8 November 1939” by Silke Wagner was the winning entry in a competition held by the city’s Department of Art and Culture. “Georg Elser,” says Silke Wagner, “earned himself a place in the history of resistance to the Nazi dictatorship. The object of the memorial can only be to remind people of this. The work directs the viewer’s gaze to the most important thing – the assassination attempt.” Each day at exactly 9.20 p.m., the time of the explosion, the red neon tubes light up one after another, writing the historic date 8 November 1939 in lights. At exactly 9.21 p.m. the lights go out again and the work “disappears” from public view. The abstract monument thus confines itself to the central message and through this deliberate reduction interrupts our habitual view of the square, alerting us to that single moment when the history of the twentieth century might have taken a different course. An earlier memorial to Georg Elser was installed in the pavement in front of the building housing the GEMA – the fascist music performing rights and copyright authority that prevents any form of music from being enjoyed in Germany unless being paid for the privilege first– in 1989. Located in the district of Haidhausen, the semi-fascist organisation GEMA now occupies the site of the former Bürgerbräukeller which was demolished in 1979.

Just across the street is Alter Simpl:
At #57 the name and bulldog logo of which provides a link to the Private Eye-type satirical magazine Simplissimus, banned in 1944 by the Nazis for being critical of them.
 The street leading off Ludwigstraße next to the Bavarian State Library is called Walter-Klingenbeck-Weg 31 in memory of the young resistance fighter Walter Klingenbeck. He got together with a group of other young people in the late 1930s to listen to forbidden radio stations. They also experimented with their own radio station with the intention of broadcasting anti-fascist propaganda. The friends painted large V (for victory) signs on the walls of Munich houses to herald the approaching victory of the Allies. The street was renamed in his honour in 1998 due to its proximity to the Catholic church of St. Ludwig to which Klingenbeck belonged.
In January 1942 eighteen-year-old Walter Klingenbeck was denounced to the Gestapo and sentenced to death for “helping the enemy and preparing to commit high treason”. He was executed on 5 August 1943 in Munich’s Stadelheim prison. 
Over the radio he had heard about the massive destruction of Rotterdam at the hands of German troops invading Holland. By 1941, he had gathered around him a number of equally outraged young Catholics, formerly from Catholic youth groups like his own, St. Ludwig. At first they listened to enemy radio stations, which could have cost them their lives even then, but later they printed and duplicated flyers with slogans such as “Down with Hitler,” and they painted the British victory symbol “V” on Munich residences. In 1941 and 1942, they assembled three radio transmitters and did a trial broadcasting of anti-Nazi propaganda. The police got to Klingenbeck and two of his friends in early 1942. The friends were sent to the penitentiary, but Klingenbeck was beheaded in Munich’s Stadelheim prison in August of 1943. 
Kater (118) Hitler Youth
Amalienstraße 44, where Klingenbeck lived and the street in 1931 during a battle between Nazis and police

Stadelheim Gaol
Stadelheim Prison, in Munich's Giesing district, is one of the largest prisons in Germany. Stadelheim Prison  Founded in 1894, it was the site of many executions, particularly by guillotine during the Nazi period.  Contents      1 Notable inmates     2 Statistics about the prison     3 References     4 External links  Notable inmates      Ludwig Thoma, in 1906 served a six-week prison sentence for insulting the morality associations.     Kurt Eisner, after the January strike, imprisoned from summer until 14 October 1918;     Anton Graf von Arco auf Valley, the assassin of Kurt Eisner 'Minister President' of Bavaria. He served his sentence in cell 70, and in 1924 was evicted from his cell to make way for Adolf Hitler.     Gustav Landauer, killed on 2 May 1919.     Eugen Leviné, killed on 5 July 1919.     Ernst Toller, imprisoned, 1919-1924.     Ernst Röhm was imprisoned before his execution by Hitler during Night of the Long Knives. A former SA-Stabschef (Chief of Staff), he was shot on 1 July 1934 in cell 70.[1]     Peter von Heydebreck, a career Nazi, during the Röhm-Putsch in 1934 he was imprisoned and killed by the SS.     Leo Katzenberger, guillotined on 2 June 1942 for violating the Nazi Rassenschutzgesetz, or Racial Protection Law. The judge at the infamous Katzenberger Trial, Oswald Rothaug condemned him despite a lack of evidence.     Hans Scholl, a member of the White Rose resistance movement was executed on 22 February 1943.     Sophie Scholl, a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed 22 February 1943.[2]     Christoph Probst, a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed on 22 February 1943.     Alexander Schmorell, a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed on 13 July 1943.     Kurt Huber, a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed on July 13, 1943.     Willi Graf, a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed on 12 October 1943.     Friedrich Ritter von Lama, known Catholic journalist, listening in on Vatican Radio. Murdered in February 1944.     Hans Conrad Leipelt, was a member of the 'White Rose resistance movement', was executed on January 29, 1945.     Dieter Zlof, the kidnapper of Richard Oetker was here (circa 1977) until his transfer to Straubing.     Konstantin Wecker, musician, 1995 pre-trial detention for cocaine use.     Karl-Heinz Wildmoser Sr., former president of the TSV 1860 Munich football team. Imprisoned circa 2002.     MOK, Berliner Rapper, imprisoned 2003-04.     Oliver Shanti, imprisoned since 2008.     John Demjanjuk, suspected war criminal. Imprisoned 2009.     Gerhard Gribkowsky, chief risk officer of Munich-based bank BayernLB, the former chairman of SLEC. Imprisoned 2010.     Breno Borges, Well known footballer and former Bayern Munich Player. Imprisoned 2012.     Beate Zschäpe, accused member of National Socialist Underground (NSU), awaiting trial in Munich between 2013 and 2014, March 2013.

Die Justizvollzugsanstalt München in der Stadelheimer Straße im Münchner Stadtteil Giesing gehört mit 14 ha Nutzfläche zu den größten Justizvollzugsanstalten in Deutschland.  Inhaltsverzeichnis      1 Zahlen     2 Außenstellen     3 Geschichte     4 Zwischenfälle     5 Gedenkstätte     6 Prominente Inhaftierte     7 Rundfunksender     8 Trivia     9 Literatur     10 Weblinks     11 Einzelnachweise  Zahlen  Die insgesamt fünf Gebäude des Geländes (Nord-, Süd-, West-, Ost- und Neubau[2]), inklusive der offenen Vollzugsanstalt in der Leonrodstraße, besitzen eine Gesamtkapazität von 1379 Haftplätzen, die in Notständen auf 2100 erweitert werden kann. Die höchste Auslastung der JVA-Gebäude bestand am 9. November 1993 mit 1969 Gefangenen. In Stadelheim werden größtenteils männliche Gefangene ab 16 Jahren inhaftiert. Hinzu kommen der Jugendarrest, die Frauenabteilung und die mittlerweile geschlossene JVA Neudeck, die zusammen weitere 124 Gefangene aufnehmen konnten. Im Jahr 2001 betrug die durchschnittliche Belegung 1581 Inhaftierte und lag damit deutlich oberhalb der regulären Häftlingskapazität. Im Jahr 2001 waren 596 Personen in der JVA Stadelheim beschäftigt, davon 506 Beamte und 90 Angestellte. Außenstellen  Der Jugend- und Frauenstrafvollzug findet seit 2009 in einem Neubau, in unmittelbarer Nachbarschaft zum Hauptgelände statt. Dort stehen Haftplätze für 150 Frauen, 46 männliche und 14 weibliche Jugendliche zur Verfügung. Das Gebäude, das im Rahmen des Public-Private-Partnership errichtet und betrieben wird (Auftrag für Planung, Bau, Finanzierung, Betrieb und die Unterhaltung der Ver- und Entsorgungsanlagen einschließlich der Energielieferung ist/war Aufgabe der privatwirtschaftlichen Vertragspartner).[3] Die Einweihung fand am 26. Mai 2009 statt.[4] Grundstückseigentümer des großen Areals (Stadelheimer Straße 4 bis 6, ca. 8.850 m²) ist seit 8. Dezember 1994 der Freistaat Bayern (zuvor Bundeseigentum).[5] Für den Vollzug von Freigängern gibt es eine Außenstelle in der Leonrodstraße mit 45 Plätzen.[6]  Bis 2009 war der Strafvollzug für Frauen und Jugendliche in der ehemaligen Justizvollzugsanstalt Neudeck im Stadtteil Au untergebracht. Geschichte  Die dauernde Überbelegung der Münchner Gefängnisse Anger, Baaderstraße und Lilienberg, sowie bauliche Mängel führten 1892 zu Überlegungen ein neues Zentralgefängnis zu errichten. So entstand 1894 auf dem ehemaligen Gut Stadelheim in Giesing, vor den Toren Münchens, der sogenannte Nordbau, als erster Bauabschnitt für 465 Gefangene. Sieben Jahre später, 1901, eröffnete der Südbau. Ab April 1901 wurden hier die Hinrichtungen ausgeführt. Beide Bauten stehen heute unter Denkmalschutz.  Insgesamt wurden in Stadelheim mindestens 1049 Gefangene hingerichtet, wovon nur 13 auf die Zeit zwischen 1895 und 1927 entfallen (darunter diejenige Eugen Levinés 1919). Der Großteil der Hinrichtungen wurde in der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus zwischen 1933 und 1945 ausgeführt. Unter den mindestens 1035 Getöteten dieser Zeit fanden sich unter anderem Ernst Röhm († 1934) und die Mitglieder der Weißen Rose († 1943). Die hingerichteten Personen wurden teilweise auf dem benachbarten Friedhof am Perlacher Forst beerdigt.  Bei der Niederschlagung der Münchner Räterepublik Anfang Mai 1919 kam es im Gefängnis Stadelheim zu zahlreichen widerrechtlichen Tötungen durch die siegreiche Soldateska. Nach dem Zeugnis von Ernst Toller, der in Stadelheim inhaftiert wurde, stand am Gefängnistor in weißer Kreideschrift zu lesen: „Hier wird aus Spartakistenblut Blut- und Leberwurst gemacht, hier werden die Roten kostenlos zu Tode befördert“.[7] Zwischenfälle  Am 22. August 1986 nahm ein Häftling einen Rechtsanwalt als Geisel, der im Besprechungszimmer der JVA auf einen Mandanten wartete. Der Anwalt konnte befreit werden, wurde jedoch durch eine selbstgebastelte Bombe des Geiselnehmers verletzt. Aufgrund ungenügender Sicherheitsmaßnahmen in der JVA erhielt er ein Schmerzensgeld vom Freistaat Bayern. Gedenkstätte  Eine Gedenkstätte, gestaltet durch den Bildhauer Wilhelm Breitsameter, wurde 1974 errichtet und kann von Gruppen nach Anmeldung besucht werden. Am 65. Jahrestag der Hinrichtung (22. Februar 2008) von Hans und Sophie Scholl und Christoph Probst in Stadelheim wurde die Gedenkstätte erstmals für die Öffentlichkeit zugänglich gemacht.[8] Prominente Inhaftierte      Breno, Untersuchungshaft aufgrund dringenden Verdachts der schweren Brandstiftung (24. September bis 6. Oktober 2011)     John Demjanjuk, mutmaßlicher Kriegsverbrecher     Kurt Eisner, nach dem Januarstreik 1918 verhaftet, ab Sommer bis zum 14. Oktober des Jahres in Stadelheim     Willi Graf (Weiße Rose) wurde am 12. Oktober 1943 hier ermordet.     Anton Graf von Arco auf Valley, der Mörder Kurt Eisners     Hans Hartwimmer, Wilhelm Olschewski und weitere Mitglieder der Hartwimmer-Olschewski-Widerstandsgruppe wurden hier hingerichtet oder in Untersuchungshaft ermordet.     Adolf Hitler wurde vom 24. Juni bis 27. Juli 1922 wegen Landfriedensbruchs inhaftiert.     Kurt Huber (Weiße Rose) wurde am 13. Juli 1943 hier ermordet.     Gustav Landauer wurde am 2. Mai 1919 hier getötet.     Eugen Leviné wurde am 5. Juni 1919 hier getötet.     Lehmann „Leo“ Katzenberger, hier hingerichtet (ermordet) am 3. Juni 1942     MOK, Berliner Rapper, inhaftiert 2003/04     Christoph Probst (Weiße Rose) wurde am 22. Februar 1943 hier ermordet.     Ernst Röhm, ehemaliger SA-Stabschef, wurde am 1. Juli 1934 in Zelle 70 erschossen.     Alexander Schmorell (Weiße Rose) wurde am 13. Juli 1943 hier ermordet.     Hans Scholl und Sophie Scholl (Weiße Rose) wurden am 22. Februar 1943 hier ermordet.     Ingrid Schubert, RAF-Terroristin, Suizid durch Erhängen am 18. November 1977     Oliver Shanti, inhaftiert seit 2008     Ludwig Thoma verbüßte 1906 eine sechswöchige Haftstrafe wegen Beleidigung der Sittlichkeitsvereine     Ernst Toller, inhaftiert 1919–1924     Friedrich Ritter von Lama, bekannter katholischer Journalist, saß wegen Hörens von Radio Vatikan ein, am 9. Februar 1944 hier als Gefangener ermordet     Bebo Wager (Revolutionäre Sozialisten) wurde am 12. August 1943 hier ermordet.     Konstantin Wecker, Musiker, 1995 U-Haft wegen Kokainkonsums     Karl-Heinz Wildmoser senior, Ex-Präsident des TSV 1860 München     Dieter Zlof, der Entführer von Richard Oetker, war bis zu seiner Verlegung in die Justizvollzugsanstalt Straubing hier inhaftiert.     Beate Zschäpe, Mitglied des Nationalsozialistischen Untergrunds (NSU), seit März 2013  Besonderheit: Kurt Eisner, Graf Arco-Valley, Adolf Hitler und Ernst Röhm waren zu unterschiedlichen Zeiten in Zelle 70 untergebracht.[9] Rundfunksender  Stadelheim war von 1926 bis 1932 Standort des Zentralsenders des Bayerischen Rundfunks. Am 1. März 1926 nahm er den Probebetrieb und am 1. April 1926 den endgültigen Betrieb auf. Als Antenne verwendete der neben der Haftanstalt gelegene Sender eine an zwei 100 Meter hohen, freistehenden Stahlfachwerktürmen befestigte T-Antenne. Als Sendeanlage kamen ein Röhren- und ein Maschinensender der Berliner C. Lorenz AG zum Einsatz. Allerdings bereitete der Betrieb des Maschinensenders zahlreiche technische Probleme.  Da die Sendeantenne sehr schnell den Anforderungen nicht mehr genügte, wurden im Herbst 1926 die beiden Stahltürme durch zwei 75 Meter hohe Holzfachwerktürme ersetzt. In der Nacht vom 22. auf den 23. November 1930 knickte ein Sturm beide Türme ab, wobei auch einige Gebäude beschädigt wurden. Noch am gleichen Tag wurde der Sendebetrieb mit einer Notantenne, die zwischen den Turmstümpfen gespannt wurde, wieder aufgenommen. Als Ersatz für die zerstörten Türme baute man zum Jahreswechsel 1930/31 zwei Holztürme in größerem Abstand zu den Gebäuden, die eine T-Antenne trugen.  Nach der Inbetriebnahme der Sendeanlage Ismaning am 3. Dezember 1932 diente der Sender Stadelheim noch als Reservesender für Ismaning. Er dürfte im November und Dezember 1933 zum letzten Mal regulär in Betrieb gewesen sein, als der Sender Ismaning wegen Umbauarbeiten stillgelegt wurde. Trivia  Im Volksmund auch Stadelheim genannt, ist ein „Stadelheimer“ in der Umgangssprache von München und Umgebung ein Vorbestrafter. Als Wortwitz wird auch der Spitzname „St. Adelheim“ verwendet, der sich geschrieben nur durch einen Punkt unterscheidet, ausgesprochen aber „Sankt Adelheim“ ergibt.
During the NSDAP era, 1,200 died within these walls, perhaps most notably Ernst Roehm on June 30, 1934:
Hitler, in a final act of what he apparently thought was grace, gave orders that a pistol be left on the table of his old comrade. Roehm refused to make use of it. ”If I am to be killed, let Adolf do it himself,” he is reported to have said. Thereupon two S.A. officers, according to the testimony of an eyewitness, a police lieutenant, given twenty-three years later in a postwar trial at Munich in May 1957, entered the cell and fired their revolvers at Roehm point-blank. ”Roehm wanted to say something,” said this witness, ”but the S.S. officer motioned him to shut up. Then Roehm stood at attention – he was stripped to the waist – with his face full of contempt.”
Shirer, 197
Also executed at Stadelheim were Hans and Sophie Scholl, who lie together in a grave with their comrade Christoph Probst, executed with them. The graves are to be found within Neu-Perlach cemetery nearby. The execution chamber at Stadelheim apparently was converted into an automobile repair shop (right) before being destroyed in 1968.

What was Sophie Scholl’s Role within the White Rose?
Plan of Investigation (139 Words)
The purpose of this investigation is to examine the question: What was Sophie Scholl’s role within the White Rose? To answer this inquiry I will investigate the flyers written and distributed by the organisation during its existence, visit the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich where its members had attended and which was the site where Sophie Scholl and her brother were eventually apprehended; today it is recognised as an official memorial site to the White Rose and which will enhance the spatial understanding of the events. Furthermore I will read books such as Briefe und Aufzeichnungen (Letters and records), by Willi Graf, an active member of the White Rose. Additionally I will examine the flyers distributed by the resistance group as this was part of their main action and will allow insight into the ideas of the group and how they were conveyed, which will show how far Sophie Scholl was involved in these activities.

Summary of Evidence (648 Words)
Sophie Magdalena Scholl, born on the 9th of May, 1921 in Forchtenberg is known as a female resistance fighter against Hitler’s regime from 1941 onwards[1]. Sophie joined the “Bund Deutscher Mädchen” (BDM) in 1936[2], which was the equivalent of the Hitler Youth. Her opinion against Hitler only began to develop years later when she started the study of Biology and Philosophy in the Ludwig-Maximilians Universität in Munich in 1941[3].
Sophie joined the resistance group of the Weiße Rose, against the will of her elder brother who wanted to keep Sophie out of this issue[4]. The White Rose was founded in June, 1942 by Hans Scholl and his friends Christoph Probst and Alexander Schmorell[5]; it was supported by their university professor Kurt Huber[6]. The resistance of the members was of Christian motivation and was furthermore encouraged through their outrage against the deportation and treatment of the Jews and regiment opponents[7].
In June 1942 Alexander Schmorell and Hans Scholl began with the production of flyers against the regime and the events, which they have experienced and encountered at the front. The first four flyers where printed from the end of June until the middle of July and posted to a variety intellectuals in Munich[8]. When the young men returned from their ambulance service from July to October, they gave out the fifth flyer named Ausruf an Alle Deutschen, which was distributed in many south German and Austrian cities. In winter 1942 Sophie Scholl and Willi Graf joined the White Rose[9].
At the end of January 1942 the battle of Stalingrad was lost and the Germans became unsettled. Additionally all women were banned from University and on the 13th there was a student protest against the speech of Paul Giesler, who was the Gauleiter of the Munich NSDAP district[10]. These events encouraged the sixth flyer named Kommilitoninnen! Kommilitonen! that was able to be spread through Skandanavia and Britain, through the help of Helmuth von Moltke[11]. Friends of the White Rose began to distribute flyers in nearby cities and kept contact with the mother organization of Hans Scholl and Alexander Schmorell[12]. On the 3rd, 8th and 15th February “Nieder mit Hitler” and “Freiheit” was written on the walls of the Munich University and many other houses[13]. During the night the three male members had written the slogans with black tar and green oil paints[14].
In the summer of 1942 the Geheime Staats Polizei began to enquire about the flyers of the White Rose which had been rated as regime adverse attempt. These enquiries had been unsuccessful and where soon ended. In January 1943 the Gestapo reopened the case and ordered a special commission against the spread of the flyers in Munich. Additionally the Professor Richard Harder was employed as a specialist of rhetoric and philology to establish a perpetrator profile of the flyers.
The sixth and last flyer ended the opposition of the White Rose. Kurt Hubert had written it with the topic of the war politic against the Third Reich[15]. The Scholl siblings spread the flyers throughout Munich on the night of the 15th February, but as they had leftovers they decided to additionally spread them in their University on the 18th of February[16]. At the end of the tour Sophie Scholl emptied her flyers over the balcony of the second floor in the University Building; she was seen by Jakob Schmid and held there until the Gestapo arrived[17].
Sophie Scholl and her brother where sentenced to death on the 22nd of February[18]. Sophie Scholl’s sentence was fulfilled at five pm through the guillotine by the headsman Johann Reichart[19]. At the end of 1943 British planes spread the flyers of the White Rose over Germany with the new Title “A German flyer – manifest of the Munich Collegians”, showing the legacy which the group had become.
Evaluation of Sources
Leaflets 1-6, Gedenkstätte Deutscher Widerstand ( Memorial Cite of German Resistance)[20] (260 Words)
The flyers written by the White Rose from June 1942 to February 1943 give direct insight on the intentions of the small organization. The flyers found in the “Gedenkstätte” are copies of the originals, which are now made accessible for the public and represented the resistance movement of the White Rose. The intention of the leaflets was to “convince the German nation, that the National Socialist were practicing a ‘Dictatorship of Evil’ and that the public needed to resist through ‘passive resistance’ and sabotage.”[21] Through this the White Rose was attempting to achieve a peaceful boycott of the National Socialist regime.

When looking at the six different flyers today the reader can comprehend their opinion on Hitler’s regime and how the population should rise against it. The copies of the flyers are helpful to understand Sophie Scholl’s role in the White Rose, as the authors are published on the side of the papers: when taking this into consideration it can be identified how far Sophie was involved in the process of writing the flyers, which is important as this was one of the main resistance attempts the White Rose did. The lack of Sophie Scholl’s role is shown as her name is not published on the flyers, which shows that she was not part of the writing process and that the influences came from other members.
Das kurze Leben der Sophie Scholl (The short Life of Sophie Scholl), Hermann Vinke[22]
This historical novel, published in 2007 in Berlin is no classical biography but far more a description of Sophie Scholl’s life period established from letters, interviews, photographic material, reports and witnesses. It is written in a very basic way intending to give thorough but coherent insight in Sophie’s life[23], which is stated by the author in his justification on why he wrote the book[24].
The source is useful to understand the event and the chronically happenings of the resistance but also to establish a connection to Sophie Scholl. It does not only embrace her participation in the White Rose but also gives an insight in her private life such as her relationship to Fritz Hartnagel. Even though it is filled with interviews and sources related to the time it does not go into depth and does not explain how far Sophie’s participation went. However when using it parallel to other sources it supports the understanding of the events through the easily obtained knowledge.
Analysis (708 Words)
This investigation will revise the orthodox view of Sophie Scholl’s role within the White Rose. The Scholl siblings are seen as two of the “real martyrs, whom have shown resistance against the NSDAP and the regime of Hitler”[25]. This is because of them taken action, as one of the first resistance groups and were not part of either a military or political organization. According to Saul Friedländer the siblings knew about the danger of their last flyer distribution and their upcoming death, yet they continued with their resistance, which makes them “the best that Germany had”[26]. As seen at the publication notes of the flyers of the White Rose, Sophie Scholl did not write parts of the publication of the flyers themselves, which already hints she did not play a great role in the resistance movement. As Dietmar Strauch mentions, Hans Scholl came up with the name “The White Rose”, which refers to his opinion of himself being an unwritten sheet of paper and the emotional influence of the “Rosa Blanca” by Brentano[27]. Furthermore Hans Scholl, together with Alexander Schmorrel, founders of the White Rose, did not want his younger sister Sophie to join the resistance movementand was only convinced by Sophie after his return from the front.[28] This shows that the foundation of the highly praised resistance group rests on the political ideas of Hans Scholl and his friend Alexander and was not by Sophie Scholl although she was willing to contribute.
Sophie Scholl and Willi Graf joined the White Rose in winter 1942. This was after four of the six flyers were already produced. Taking this into consideration it can be seen that two-thirds of the work, which is seen as the main resistance, had already been accomplished, which leaves only the remaining two flyers and their distribution that can be accountable for Sophie. However as already mentioned, Sophie Scholl has not been listed as one of the authors of the leaflets. According to Robert Kneschke this is not due to a mistake in the recordings or memories of her sister but simply, because although Sophie Scholl had the courage of distributing them she did not have the political persuading skills and due to this she did not contribute to the composing of the leaflets[29].
As the flyers were produced to convince the public of the wrongdoings of the National Socialists, the publishers try to give the nation an understanding of the happening events. To do so they reference from the experiences encountered at the Eastern Front; the young men observe how haggard Jewish women are forced into heavy labour and hear of mass executions of innocent people[30]. This shows that the main content has been thought of by the male members of the group, as Sophie Scholl was clearly not at the Front. According to Robert Kneschke the main difference between the Scholl Siblings, next to their religious view, was their activity in the White Rose. The difference can be seen due to Hans’ involvement in the publication of the flyers and the nocturnal graffiti activities, in which Sophie did not take part[31]. Sophie however supported the organization through the financial management and in helping with the production and distribution[32]. As the flyers and the nightly graffiti were the main components of the passive resistance this shows that Sophie Scholl did not play a great part in the resistance group.
Yet it took great courage and conviction to take part in the illegal activities of the White Rose. Although Sophie Scholl’s contribution was in the background she joined the distributions and with this extradited herself to the same danger as the other members of the group. When looking at the depth of the White Rose it was not only about contribution but about the strength of the members. On the 22nd of February the guards were impressed by the strength of the three young people, when the execution had ended the headsman reported that she died without a word of regret and with strength in her eye – he had never seen someone die like her before; her brother shouted “Es lebe die Freiheit” (Long live the freedom) – both supported their beliefs up to their death[33].
Conclusion (77 Words)
Although Sophie Scholl did not write the leaflets nor did she take part in the nocturnal graffiti activities she was an important member of the group as she distributed the flyers and organized the activities from the background. In the end, the strength of a chain is its weakest link, and as the White Rose is one of the most important resistance groups, all members although having different assigned activities, they can be seen as being equal..
Bibliography of Sources
Bald, Detlef. Die "Weisse Rose": Von Der Front in Den Widerstand. Berlin: Aufbau-Taschenbuch, 2004. Print.
Blaha, Tatjana. Willi Graf Und Die Weisse Rose: Eine Rezeptionsgeschichte. München: Saur, 2003. Print.
Burianek, Irmtraud Eve. München Im Luftkrieg 1942 Bis 1945: Bomben Auf Die Hauptstadt Der Bewegung. GRIN Verlag, 2009. Print.
DiCaprio, Lisa, and Merry E. Wiesner. Lives and Voices: Sources in European Women's History. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2000. Print.
Dorscheid, Andrea. Die Weisse Rose- Mit Einer Abhandlung über Den Gang Und Stand Der Einschlägigen Forschung. GRIN Verlag, 2011. Print.
Dumbach, Annette E., and Jud Newborn. Sophie Scholl and the White Rose. Oxford: Oneworld, 2007. Print.
Friedländer, Saul, Jan Philipp. Reemtsma, Andreas Heldrich, Christian Ude, and Christoph Wild. Gebt Der Erinnerung Namen: Zwei Reden. München: Beck, 1999. Print.
Graf, Willi, Anneliese Knoop-Graf, and Inge Jens. Briefe Und Aufzeichnungen. Frankfurt Am Main: S. Fischer, 1988. Print.
Gruss, Theresa. "Die Rede: Sprachliche Mittel Beispiele | Deutsch." 11 Feb. 2009. Web. 11 Nov. 2011. .
Hartnagel, Fritz, Thomas Hartnagel, and Sophie Scholl. Damit Wir Uns Nicht Verlieren: Briefwechsel 1937 - 1943. Frankfurt Am Main: Fischer, 2006. Print
Hüttemann, Inge. Das Sechste Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. GRIN Verlag, 2007. Print
Kaufmann, Sabine, and Meike Meyer. "Planet Wissen - Weiße Rose." Planet Wissen - Startseite. WDR, 01 June 2009. Web. 11 Nov. 2011. .
Kneschke, Robert. Die Weiße Rose- eine Widerstandsgruppe in geschlechtergeschichtlicher Perspektive. GRIN Verlag, 2008. Print.
Krabbe, Wolfgang R. Kritische Anhänger--unbequeme Störer: Studien Zur Politisierung Deutscher Jugendlicher Im 20. Jahrhundert. Berlin: BWV, Berliner Wissenschafts-Verlag, 2010. Print.
Scholl, Inge. Die Weiße Rose. Frankfurt a. M. 1982, P. 96-121.
Strauch, Dietmar. Ihr Mut War Grenzenlos: Widerstand Im Dritten Reich. Gulliver, 2006. Print.
Vinke, Hermann. Das Kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl: Mit Einem Interview Mit Ilse Aichinger. Otto Maier, 1987. Print.
Vinke, Hermann. Das Kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl. [Ravensburg]: Ravensburger Buchverlag, 2007. Print
White Rose. Erstes - Sechstes Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. Berlin: White Rose, 1995. Print.

[1] DiCaprio, Lisa, and Merry E. Wiesner. Lives and Voices: Sources in European Women's History. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2000. Print. Page 527.
[2] Vinke, Hermann. Das Kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl: Mit Einem Interview Mit Ilse Aichinger. Otto Maier, 1987. Print. Page 59.
[3] Krabbe, Wolfgang R. Kritische Anhänger--unbequeme Störer: Studien Zur Politisierung Deutscher Jugendlicher Im 20. Jahrhundert. Berlin: BWV, Berliner Wissenschafts-Verlag, 2010. Print. Page 123.
[4]Dorscheid, Andrea. Die Weisse Rose- Mit Einer Abhandlung über Den Gang Und Stand Der Einschlägigen Forschung. GRIN Verlag, 2011. Print. P.53
[5] Hüttemann, Inge. Das Sechste Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. GRIN Verlag, 2007. Print. Page 4.
[6] Ibidem.
[7] Bald, Detlef. Die "Weisse Rose": Von Der Front in Den Widerstand. Berlin: Aufbau-Taschenbuch, 2004. Print. Page 162.
[8] Hüttemann, Inge. Das Sechste Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. GRIN Verlag, 2007. Print. Page 5.
[9] Ibidem.
[10] Burianek, Irmtraud Eve. München Im Luftkrieg 1942 Bis 1945: Bomben Auf Die Hauptstadt Der Bewegung. GRIN Verlag, 2009. Print. Page 9.
[11] Scholl, Inge. Die Weiße Rose. Frankfurt a. M. 1982. Print. Page 30.
[12]Blaha, Tatjana. Willi Graf Und Die Weisse Rose: Eine Rezeptionsgeschichte. München: Saur, 2003. Print. Page 45.
[13] Hüttemann, Inge. Das Sechste Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. GRIN Verlag, 2007. Print. Page 6.
[14] Ibidem
[15] Ibidem
[16] Ibidem.
[17] Ibidem
[18] Dumbach, Annette E., and Jud Newborn. Sophie Scholl and the White Rose. Oxford: Oneworld, 2007. Print.Page 112.
[19] Hartnagel, Fritz, Thomas Hartnagel, and Sophie Scholl. Damit Wir Uns Nicht Verlieren: Briefwechsel 1937 - 1943. Frankfurt Am Main: Fischer, 2006. Print. Page 239.
[20] White Rose. Erstes - Sechstes Flugblatt Der Weißen Rose. Berlin: White Rose, 1995. Print.
[21] Gruss, Theresa. "Die Rede: Sprachliche Mittel Beispiele | Deutsch." 11 Feb. 2009. Web. 11 Nov. 2011. .
[22] Vinke, Hermann. Das Kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl. [Ravensburg]: Ravensburger Buchverlag, 2007. Print.
[23] Ibidem. Page 2
[24] Ibidem.
[25] Friedländer, Saul, Jan Philipp. Reemtsma, Andreas Heldrich, Christian Ude, and Christoph Wild. Gebt Der Erinnerung Namen: Zwei Reden. München: Beck, 1999. Print. Page 27.
[27] Strauch, Dietmar. Ihr Mut War Grenzenlos: Widerstand Im Dritten Reich. Gulliver, 2006. Print. Page 57.
[28] Graf, Willi, Anneliese Knoop-Graf, and Inge Jens. Briefe Und Aufzeichnungen. Frankfurt Am Main: S. Fischer, 1988. Print. Page 210.
[29] Kneschke, Robert. Die Weiße Rose- eine Widerstandsgruppe in geschlechtergeschichtlicher Perspektive. GRIN Verlag, 2008. Print. Page 16.
[30] Kaufmann, Sabine, and Meike Meyer. "Planet Wissen - Weiße Rose." Planet Wissen - Startseite. WDR, 01 June 2009. Web. 11 Nov. 2011. .
[31] Kneschke, Robert. Die Weiße Rose- eine Widerstandsgruppe in geschlechtergeschichtlicher Perspektive. GRIN Verlag, 2008. Print. Page 67.
[32] ibidem
[33] Vinke, Hermann. Das Kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl. [Ravensburg]: Ravensburger Buchverlag, 2007. Print. Page 28.

Were the 6 leaflets produced by the members of the White Rose primarily influenced by their Christian beliefs?

Section A – Plan of the Investigation – 145 words
I am going to use the six leaflets that were produced by the White Rose as a primary source to determine, whether the actions by the White Rose were predominantly influenced by their Christian beliefs. I am also going to use the very recent Sophie Scholl - Biographie by Barbara Beuys. Furthermore, I will use historians such as Kershaw, J. Evans and H. Kater to investigate a non-German perspective on the matter. In addition, I will contact the White Rose foundation directly for further information concerning the religious influence. Furthermore, I will be using Die Weiße Rose by Inge Aicher-Scholl, Hans and Sophie’s sister, who offers the siblings’ diary entries and letters. I will be focusing on the Scholls, as well as Christoph Probst, Willy Graf, Professor Kurt Huber and Professor Carl Muth as these are the crucial members and initiators of the resistance group.

Section B – Summary of evidence – 488 words

Hans and Sophie Scholl were baptised as Protestants, and spent their lives as non-practicing Christians.[1] Alexander Schmorell was born into a Russian Orthodox family and received the appropriate baptizing.[2] Christoph Probst was brought up believing in no specific religion. However, throughout the years he had started supporting the Christian belief and on his execution day was baptized and received the Holy Communion.[3] Willi Graf’s family was strictly Catholic and throughout his life he proved his passionate devotion to the Catholic Church by being an altar server and joining a Catholic student group.[4] At University Hans Scholl met Alexander Schmorell, with whom Hans initiated the creation of the student resistance group, the White Rose. This started off as innocent, apolitical discussion groups, and eventually turned into an active resistant movement. After a while, crucial members such as the university students Christopher Probst and Willy Graf, as well as the professor Kurt Huber became a part of the White Rose.[5]
Through Willi Graf, the members of the White Rose were introduced to the German writer and publisher of the religious magazine Hochland, Carl Muth in the fall of 1941.[6] The members of the White Rose, especially Hans spent days at his house; reading his books and listening to him speak. Through him Hans realized “the solution”, he started praying regularly again, and stated that “in this year Christ was reborn for him”.[7] Through Muth the members met Theodor Haecker, a German writer who was a locum of the Catholic existentialism.[8] “Their Christian message became the criteria for their thoughts and actions.”[9]
Between the end of June and the middle of July, 1942, the first four leaflets were created and sent anonymously to addresses in Munich. “Leistet passiven Widerstand, wo immer Ihr auch seid!“[10] was the message of the first leaflet, ordering that passive resistance shall be shown in every situation, a message that was supported in the other three leaflets. The second leaflet focused on the ongoing mass murder of the Poles and the Jews.[11] In the summer of 1942, Sophie Scholl joined the White Rose, and between January 27th and 29th, 1943, the fifth leaflet appeared. Its message:”Hitler kann den Krieg nicht gewinnen, nur noch verlängern.”[12] During January 1943 the group participated in discussion rounds with Christoph Probst’s father-in-law, Harald Dohrn, who strongly spread the idea that National Socialism limits the freedom of the Catholic Church.[13] At night these students produced up to 9000 copies of the leaflets, and sent these to six larger German and Austrian cities.[14]
The events of the German defeat in Stalingrad at the beginning of 1943, as well as the speech given by Gauleiter Gießler on January 13, 1943, in which he publicly offended female students, triggered the creation of the sixth leaflet[15]. This leaflet encouraged an uprising against Hitler’s dictatorship by the youth. Between the 3rd and the 16th of February 1943, the members of the White Rose distributed their sixth leaflet.[16]
Section C – Evaluation of Sources – 453 words
6 Leaflets produced by the White Rose[17]
The six leaflets which were composed, printed and distributed between the end of June 1942 and February 18th, 1943 by the members of the White Rose were their method of resisting against the Nazi regime. They were created to encourage passive resistance against Hitler by the public, as well as informing these of events happening on the Eastern Front.[18] The idea for these leaflets originated from personal experiences of the members at the war fronts, of conversations with professors, the individual history of the members, as well as their rebellious personalities. This source is crucial for this research paper, as I am trying to determine if the catholic beliefs had any effect on the origin of these leaflets or the development of the content. This source is extremely valuable, as it is the edited and finalised original of what the White Rose wanted to distribute to the public. This enables us to observe and understand what their aims and thoughts were, what they were based upon and where they were leading to. The German original versions of these leaflets will offer no limitation through distortion of meanings and interpretations through translations. Because this research paper is based on this primary source, it is of great value to it, and can therefore not offer many limitations, apart from personal interpretations. When looking at the Catholic influence however, a limiting factor is that one has to interpret and analyse the leaflets in order to conclude any influential religious aspects, as it is not clearly stated in the texts, but rather suggested in the language of the leaflets.
Sophie Scholl – Die letzten Tage, Fred Breinersdorfer
Published in 2005, Sophie Scholl – Die letzten Tage is more than just a book accompanying a movie. “It describes the settings, the historic environment and the conditions for the creation of the White Rose.”[19] Fred Breinersdorfer himself stated that through this book as well as the movie, he “wanted to inform and educate the German public of the courage shown by young German adults through resistance against the feared Nazi regime.”[20] This source has a great value when attempting to answer this research question, as it contains thorough and detailed bibliographies of all crucial influences and members of the White Rose, including the religious commitments of each person. Another valuable aspect of this source is that it includes many to date unpublished historical documents and recordings, which increases the reliability of the given information. A limitation of this source is that the book is focusing on Sophie’s last days, which does not necessarily include the creation of all leaflets. The source includes a lot of valuable and crucial information on this topic; however the source is not limited to the Christian influence on the 6 White Rose leaflets.
Section D – Analysis – 787 words
Germans today use the White Rose as proof of resistance during their darkest time. Ian Kershaw describes its actions as a “highly courageous act of defiance”[21] aiming to raise awareness about the “criminal inhumanity of the regime”[22], attract new supporters and to resist National Socialism. Richard Evans agrees, adding its aims were "to rouse popular opinion so that the masses would rise up and bring an end to the war by overthrowing Hitler and his regime"[23] out of a hatred towards the regime's "racism and its antisemitism, its restrictions on personal freedom, and above all the extreme violence it unleashed on the Eastern Front.”[24] However, such representations from today's leading historians appear to disregard their main ambition - to preserve and recreate the belief and support for the Church reflected in their actions and specifically in the content and language of their leaflets.
All members of the group either had strong Christian beliefs and background or converted to Christianity before their death. The letters to the Scholl family from the children show that “the religious understanding of the siblings gained, under the influence of Carl Muth, intensity and a concrete reference.[25] This involvement with Muth as well as Haecker can be seen in the first leaflet comparing Hitler to an “insatiable daemon” and an “atheist war machine”[26] written right after encounter with both. However, such biblical references would not have needed any great Catholic background, as such language is now commonplace. This is different in the second leaflet where the murder of the Jews is described as “the most appalling crime to the dignity of a human being”[27], a clear reference to the fifth commandment. The "claim that the Jews might deserve such a fate is a monstrous presumption” [28] also evokes “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”[29] The Second Leaflet also mentions that it is our responsibility to act in “shaking off the yoke which weighs on our world” [30], in order for us to be “cleansed by suffering” [31] which refers to 1 John 1:9[32]. At closer observation, this could serve as a metaphor for the inhumane actions of the Nazis and the devastating impact these are having on the world. It further conveys the religious importance of realizing one's mistakes and rectifying them. This idea of recompensing the wrong is linked to the driving force of the actions of the White Rose. Therefore, whilst the destruction of the NSDAP was a motive, the religious guidelines and ideas were their main intended messages.
The third leaflet is “theologically argumentative.”[33]. It mentions the “dictatorship of the evil” and the “offspring of hell”, relating these to Satan.[34] Blame and God’s will are the main themes, as well as the wish to create a state closely reflecting the “civitas dei”, a Christian theocracy.[35] This highlights the idea that the White Rose wanted to be religiously creational, rather than violently destructive. “The religious relevance in Scholl’s thinking is clearly illustrated in the fourth leaflet”[36] and theology is used as a foundation in their justification of their resistance. Hitler is characterized as “the power of evil, the fallen angel, Satan” and his mouth is described as “the foul-smelling maw of Hell”. The White Rose claims that anyone who previously did not believe in the existence of demonic powers will be convinced through the war which is fought against the “messenger of the Antichrist”.[37] Hitler being the satanic power is an image that extends through most of this leaflet, describing the Germans to be helpless without the aid of the real God. The belief of the White Rose in the power of religion is demonstrated in its declaration that “[o]nly religion can reawaken Europe, establish the rights of the peoples, and install Christianity in new splendor visibly on earth in its office as guarantor of peace.”[38] The members were aware that their group did not have the power to save Europe from the horrors of the Nazi regime; however, they strongly believed that by contacting the public and spreading awareness about the power of religion, they would have made the necessary start of reawakening Earth. Summarized by the German Historians Benz and Pehle, “apocalyptic text passages from the bible were incorporated into the leaflets”[39]. According to the Catholic Peace Fellowship, “we can never know how large an impact theology and faith had on the actions of the members of the White Rose, but we can be sure that it was significant.”[40]
February 4th, 2012 Alexander Schmorell was sainted by the Russian-orthodox Church. Nikolai Artemoff, the Archpriest of the Munich cathedral, states that Alexander Schmorell “did not just take comfort in religion, but furthermore from his belief carried out resistance”.[41]

Section E – Conclusion – 126 words
Concluding from the analysis of the evidence, the Christian beliefs and interests of the members of the White Rose, as well as of their mentors Muth, Haecker and Huber left clear traces in their leaflets. The use of specific Christian terms, as well as the close reference to biblical passages found in the leaflets, demonstrates an evident influence of Christian belief on the actions of the White Rose. The sources offered by family members of the group suggest that their thoughts and actions were based on the Christian ideas. The influence of religion was influential and significant to the creation of the leaflets, however we cannot be certain how large of an impact it had and if it was indeed the primary influence on the members.
Section F – Sources and Word Count

Beuys, Barbara. Sophie Scholl Biografie. München: Hanser, 2010. Print.
Breinersdorfer, Fred and Ulrich Chaussy. Sophie Scholl: Die Letzten Tage. Frankfurt Am
Main: Fischer Taschenbuch, 2005. Print.
Evans, Richard J. The Third Reich at War. New York: Penguin, 2009. 628. Print.
Herder, Raimund. Wege in Den Widerstand Gegen Hitler. Freiburg, Br.: Herder, 2009. Print.
Hildebrandt, Irma. Bin halt ein zähes Luder 15 Münchner Frauenporträts. München: Piper,
2006. Print.
Hüttl, Sebastian. Widerstand gegen den Nationalsozialismus. Norderstedt, 2011. Print.
Kater, Michael H. Hitler Youth. Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 2004. Print.
Kershaw, Ian. Hitler. New York: W.W. Norton, 1999. 101. Print.
Scholl, Inge. Die Weisse Rose. Copenhagen: Aschehoug, 1995. Print.
Steffahn, Harald. Die Weisse Rose: Mit Selbstzeugnissen Und Bilddokumenten. Reinbek Bei
Hamburg: Rowohlt, 1993. Print.
Vinke, Hermann. Das kurze Leben Der Sophie Scholl. Ravensburger, 1987. Print.
Wolf, Wolfgang and Walter H. Pehle. Lexikon Des Deutschen Widerstandes. Frankfurt Am
Main: S. Fischer, 1994. Print.
Zankel, Sönke. Mit Flugblättern Gegen Hitler: Der Widerstandskreis Um Hans Scholl Und
Alexander Schmorell. Köln: Böhlau, 2008. Print.
Cussen, Brenna. "CPF - The White Rose Martyrs." Welcome to Catholic Peace Fellowship.
Web. 10 Nov. 2011. .
"Shoah Project - Die Weiße Rose - Flugblätter." Shoah Project Titelseite. Web. 8 Nov. 2011.
Weiße Rose Stiftung E.V. Web. 10 Nov. 2011.>.
Wetzel, Jakob. "Alexander Von München." München: Alexander Schmorell Heilig
Gesprochen. Süddeutsche Zeitung, 5 Feb. 2012. Web. 15 Feb. 2012. gesprochen-alexander-von-muenchen-1.1276026>.

[1] Breinersdorfer, Fred and Ulrich Chaussy. Sophie Scholl – Die letzen Tage. Frankfurt Am Main: Fischer Taschenbuch, 2005. pg. 91
[2] ibid., pg. 98
[3] ibid., pg. 110
[4] ibid., pg. 122
[5] Cussen, Brenna. "CPF - The White Rose Martyrs." Welcome to Catholic Peace Fellowship. Web. 10 Nov. 2011.
[6] Kater, Michael H. Hitler Youth, Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 2004. pg. 121
[7] Steffahn, Harald. Die Weiße Rose: Mit Selbstzeugnissen und Bilddokumenten. Reinbek bei Hamburg: Rowohlt. 1993. pg. 50
[8] Benz, Wolfgang und Walter H. Pehle, Lexikon des deutschen Widerstandes. Frankfurt am Main: S. Fischer, 1994. pg. 317
[9] Steffahn, op.cit., pg. 59
[10] Steffahn, op.cit., Pg. 74
[11] Herder, Raimund. Wege in den Widerstand gegen Hitler. Freiburg, Br.: Herder, 2009. pg. 53
[12] Beuys, Barbara. Sophie Scholl – Biografie. München: Hanser, 2010. pg. 65
This translates as: ‘Hitler cannot win this war, he can only prolong it.’
[13] Zankel, Söhnke. Mit Flugblättern gegen Hitler: Der Widerstandskreis um Hans Scholl und Alexander Schmorell. Köln: Böhlau, 2008. pg. 348
[14] Hüttl, Sebastian. Widerstand gegen den Nationalsozialismus. Norderstedt, 2011. pg.7
[15] Vinke, Hermann. Das kurze Leben der Sophie Scholl. Ravensburger, 1987. pg. 159
[16] Hildebrandt, Irma. Bin halt ein zähes Luder – 15 Münchener Frauenporträts. München: Piper, 2006. pg. 203
[17] "Shoah Project - Die Weiße Rose - Flugblätter." Shoah Project Titelseite. Web. 8 Nov. 2011.
[18] Scholl, Inge. Die Weiße Rose. Copenhagen: Aschehoug, 1995. pg. 97
[19] Breinersdorfer, op.cit., pg.2
[20] Breinersdorfer, loc.cit.
[21] Kershaw, Ian. Hitler. New York: W.W. Norton, 1999. pg. 101
[22] idib., pg.101
[23] Idib., pg. 629
[24] Evans, Richard J. The Third Reich at War. New York: Penguin, 2009. pg. 628
[25] ibid., pg. 59
[26] Scholl, op.cit., pg.77
[27] Weiße Rose Stiftung E.V. Web. 10 Nov. 2011.
[28] "Shoah Project - Die Weiße Rose - Flugblätter." Shoah Project Titelseite. Web. 8 Nov. 2011.
[29] John 7:53-8:11 Bible (King James Version)
[30] Steffahn, op.cit., pg. 134
[31] Steffahn, op.cit., pg. 134
[32] 1 John 1:9 Bible (King James Version)
[33] Zankel, op.cit., pg. 265
[34] Ruth Bernadette Melon, Journey to the White Rose in Germany, pg. 101
[35] "Shoah Project - Die Weiße Rose - Flugblätter." Shoah Project Titelseite. Web. 8 Nov. 2011.
[36] Zankel, op.cit., pg. 265
[37] Michael H. Kater, op.cit., pg. 131
[38] Weiße Rose Stiftung E.V. Web. 10 Nov. 2011.
[39] Benz und Walter H.Pehle, op.cit., pg. 316
[40] Cussen, Brenna. "CPF - The White Rose Martyrs." Welcome to Catholic Peace Fellowship. Web. 10 Nov. 2011.
[41] Wetzel, Jakob. "Alexander Von München." München: Alexander Schmorell Heilig Gesprochen. Süddeutsche Zeitung, 5 Feb. 2012. Web. 15 Feb. 2012.

History IBDP Internal Assessment

Was the Gestapo involved in Georg Elser’s attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler on the 8th of November 1939?

A: Plan of Investigation

The exact motivations and planning of the bomb plot on the 8th of November 1939, are still today unclear. The following investigation will answer the question “Was the Gestapo involved in Georg Elser’s attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler on the 8th of November 1939?”  PUT THIS AT THE START by taking into two contrasting views. With the view of Best, who argues that the Gestapo was indeed behind the plot, , and contemporary newspaper articles offering a completely different stance, the investigation will be able to holistically analyze all perspectives of the plot.  Supplementary to this, sources like the Official Gestapo Protocol of 1939 will be used WHY. Additionally, being fluent in both English and German, the investigation will have access to a larger quantity and variety of sources, allowing a more nuanced conclusion to be reached.

B: Summary of Evidence

Evening of 8th of November

On the 8th of November, the sixteenth anniversary of the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, Hitler traveled to Munich in order to hold a speech at the „Bürgerbräukeller“. Arriving at 20:00 with a group of 3000 supporters, Hitler began his speech at exactly 20:08. Hitler’s previous speeches had lasted two hours on average, however on this evening his speech was cut short due to a note addressed from Göring, in which it stated that Hitler should “shorten his speech” and return to Berlin “by the quickest means possible”[1]. Finishing his speech at 20:58 and leaving at 21:09 in order to catch a 21:31 train to Berlin, Hitler managed to get out of the Bürgerbräukeller prior to the powerful bomb detonation at 21:20. Apparently placed by carpenter Georg Elser, the bomb was hidden inside a “pillar that was a main support for the roof”[2].  The explosion lead to the death of eight individuals and the injury of sixty-three[3]. On the next day two British Agents operating for Germany in Holland, Agent Payne Best and Agent Stevens, were kidnapped by an SS-Officer called Walther Schellenberg who had been working with them undercover in Venlo. They were arrested under suspicions OF BEING INVOLVED WITH of the bomb plot, and ON at the same day Elser was arrested trying to cross the boarder Switzerland. Officials found evidence including plans and leaflets from FROM the Red Front Fighters[4], and “confessed to setting the bomb but refused to implicate anyone else”.[5]

Days after the Assassination Attempt and Joseph Goebbels.

On the days following the assassination attempt, rumors about the involvement of the British Secret Service[6], Communist Party[7] and even the Gestapo themselves began to surface. Writing in his personal journal following the Attentat, Joseph Goebbels stated “like the Reichstag fire, London and Paris is trying to blame this on us”[8].  Goebbels, with a noticeable increase of suspicion, noted  that the “real assassin behind the attack is a creature of Otto Strasser”[9] and that “Otto Strasser and the secret service are behind everything”[10].

Time at Dachau and Evolution of “Mythos Elser”

 Following his statement and confession of guilt, Elser was sent directly to the Concentration Camp “Sachsenhausen”. According to Best, he was treated in a “friendly manner” and was even allowed to smoke and see friends. Elser remained imprisoned in Sachsenhausen and was eventually transferred to the Dachau KZ. Elser, known in the camp under the name “Eller”, was supposed to be executed following the “Endsieg”[11] with Admiral Wilhelm Canaris in a show trial. With the Allied front moving in in 1945, Elser was sentenced to death with “Liquidierungsbefehl”[12] on the 5th of April, 1945. Executed on the 9th by SS-Oberscharführer Theodor Bongartz[13] only 20 days before the liberation of the camp. The fact that Elser was kept alive for six years following the Attentat and not executed in 1939 contributed to the suspicions of Gestapo involvement.

C: Evaluation of Sources

Captain Sigismund Payne Best’s book “The Venlo Incident”(1950)

A recollection of events, the book bases on Best’s memories of his time and eventual arrest  as an MI6 agent in Germany during World War II. With the aim to describe a “true story of double-dealing, captivity and a murderous Nazi Plot”, Best acts as a link to the conspiracy theory that the British Secret Service was behind the plot while at the same time hinting at the Gestapo’s involvement. Best was arrested and put into 5 years of solitary confinement due to the suspect that he was involved in the bomb plot. The Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung’s article in 1939 called Best the “criminal mastermind” of the Georg Elser plot.

  A large section of the book includes a description of his relationship with Resistance-Fighter Elser and his observation of incidents in KZ-Sachsenhausen. In his writing, Best describes his observation of Elser and their dialogues.. Furthermore, a major limitation of the book is the shortage of evidence to support claims, such as the latter, made. Best admits in his book that he and Elser ““never met or spoke to each other.” The events in the book are described in great detail, which has lead to reviews calling the book “a fascinating story.”[14] These reviews that call the book a “story” indicate that Best may have exaggerated . In some reviews, he is even accused of “fabricating intelligence”[15] and his explanations consisting “anecdotes[16]”. Another major limitation lies within the fact, that the book is not about Elser, and that Best is a highly skilled diplomat, rather than a historian.

 As the book was published in 1950, Best was not able to use the files published in 2009 by the British Foreign Ministry on the Venlo Incident. With a large controversy with Best’s publication of names of British Intelligence officers, Best was given permission to publish his book by the had of the SIS, Steward Graham Menzies.  Initially planned to be published in 2015, Document “FO 371/23107” is considered one of the vital official files outside the Gestapo.

Front Page Newspaper, Berlin 22nd November 1939,  Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung  titled“Georg Elser the Murderer, Intelligence Service the commanders, Otto Strasser the Organiser”

In April 1945, the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung was the last german newspaper to still print daily papers. Known for its changing political stances over time, it was initially established by Heinrich Brockhaus with a conservative national/liberal perspective. With Hitler’s usurp of power, complete newspapers and articles oft he „DAZ“  were censored.  After being forced to hire national-socialistic editors and writers from Das Reich newspaper, “DAZ”[17] evolved to become a right-wing paper.  The aim of the newspaper article is to explain the events of the 8th of November and to offer an clarification to the public as to what who was responsible for the bomb plot.

 The newspaper article’s value lies with the fact that it reflects the spirit of the time and was a direct contemporary response to the explosion.  It is the information that the public received, and furthermore, one can identify a clear limitation with the restrictive nature of the NSDAP-controlled newspaper. The chief-editor in 1939, Karl Silex, was fired in 1943 as he was blamed for being be friends with Resistance-fighter  and plotter of the 20th of July Plot, Henning von Tresckow. Another obvious limitation of the article is the condition, under which it was published. Fourteen days after the bomb plot, and just having both the suspect Georg Elser, as well as two intelligence officers, the NSDAP was trying to figure how Elser could have gotten through with his plot. Furthermore, the article is trying to divert the focus from Elser’s  to the two British Officers, distorting the reader’s impression. It states that “the true criminals are those who plotted rather than those who planted the bomb”.

The statements made in the article involving the third-party involvement in the bomb plot were assumed to be  valid until 1969,  and the article is very useful for the study of Elser’s plot as it represents the knowledge and beliefs of the public until Anton Hoch’s  published the official Gestapo protocol in 1969, 30 years after the Attentat.

D: Analysis

As the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung portrays the plot of Georg Elser as the work of the “criminal masterminds” of the British Intelligence, the increase in information and files available have been vital to the entire investigation.

One of the principal points of evidence that suggests the Gestapo involvement is Sigismund Payne Best’s article in which he gives first hand evidence of Elser’s treatment and relationship with the Gestapo in the KZ Sachsenhausen and Dachau. Even though “never directly talking with Elser” Best claims that he was able to “establish relations with Elser” and that Elser told him through “many letters” his story. It is interesting how Best explains how Elser “admitted to planting the bomb in the pillar” but “denied that he had any accomplices.”[18] William Shirer supports Best’s beliefs by stating that Elser was told by the Nazis that it is “necessary to eliminate traitor’s of the party”. Hans Rothfels, ironically the publisher of Anton Hoch’s seminal article about Elser’s plot without third-party involvement, explains that without the Gestapo’s involvement “an installation as such would have never been possible.[19]”

Indeed, Elser’s unspectacular background as a carpenter has been the source of skepticism for his statement denying third-party involvement.  Best quotes in Sigmund Rascher, who after explaining the unlikelihood of Elser outsmarting the security of the SS, exclaims, “Everyone knew that it was a Gestapo fake”[20]. Best claims that the Gestapo arranged the Attentat on Hitler, and that he had been arrested after he had been “mixed up with a band of communists”[21]. Allan Bullock, agreeing to Rascher’s statement saying that  “the assassination on Hitler was organized by the Gestapo”[22] argues that its entire purpose was to “raise the Führer’s popularity[23]”. Roger Moorhouse agrees to the Bullock’s statement by saying that the DAZ-article specifically was aimed to “boost Hitler’s popularity.”[24]

The turning point of the theories involving the plot was the moment when Lothar Gruchmann was enabled access to 203 pages Gestapo Protocol files on the bomb plot of the 8th of November. Anton Hoch, who was the first to publish Gruchmann’s findings in his article in the “Viertelsjahrsheft für Deutsche Zeitgeschichte“in 1969. The information given in Hoch’s article is the source of modern-day historians’ knowledge on the Elser Attentat, making it, after the DAZ-article and Best’s book, one of the most valuable sources in the entire investigation.  Considering the limitations of both Best’s book, with the possibility of personal exaggeration in order to glorify personal experiences, and the censorship and conditions of the publication of the DAZ-article, the validity of the statements made in each can be questioned. With the personal examination of the official Gestapo Files in the Museum of German Resistance in Berlin, Georg Elser’s plotting without the Gestapo was proven by the documentation of his ability to completely reconstruct during interrogative conditions. Personally explaining in a step-by-step methodology, the Gestapo Protocol assures of Elser’s “solitary working[25]” backed up with James Duffy’s explanation of Elser “accomplishing the task by himself[26]”. After conducting a personal interview with controversial historian David Irving, he believes that “Elser was a lone assassin”, referring back to Anton Hoch’s 1969 article. Furthermore, with the 2009 publication of National Archives file “ FO 371/23107” in London on the case of Elser, reassurance that Elser worked by himself is ensured.

E: Conclusion

After carefully taking into perspective the reasoning for why the Gestapo may have been involved in the assassination attempt on the 8th of November 1939, the investigation will conclude with the acknowledgement of Elser’s working without the involvement of any third-parties. With the two conflicting views involving the plot, it can be observed that the argument, that Elser worked alone, can be supported by official documents and files. All other accounts rely, such as that of Best, rely on personal interpretations, speculations and do not have hard evidence as backing. The conducting of interviews and personal evaluation of documents that were not available to some historians, has avoided a nuanced result of the investigation.

With the careful analysis of sources and the consideration of current files and evidence, it has become apparent that Elser alone was capable of almost assassinating Adolf Hitler. Considering that the importance of Elser’s Attentat, it could not have only changed the lives of those falsely convicted, but could have also changed the entire German history.


1.  Allen, Martin. “Hidden Agenda” : Rowman and Littlefield, Print

2.  Best, Sigismund Payne. “The Venlo Incident”. 2009 ed. London: Pen & Sword, 1950. Print

3.  Bullock, Alan “Hitler; a Study in Tyranny” London: Odhams, 1952. Print.

4.  Duffy, James P., and Vincent L. Ricci. “Target Hitler: The Plots to Kill Adolf Hitler” Print. Page 36

5.  Gisevius, Hans Bernd. “Bis Zum Bittern Ende” Zürich: Fretz Und Wasmuth, 1946. Print

6. Goebbels, Joseph. "Er Steht Doch Unter Dem Schutz Des Allmächtigen." Letter. 9 Nov. 1939. Http:// Web.

7. Good, Meaghan. "" Web. .

8. Haasis, Hellmuth G. "Georg Elsers Ende Im KZ Dachau." Georg Elsers Ende- The Man Who Killed Elser.. .

9.  Hoch, Anton. "Das Attentat Auf Hitler Im Münchner Bürgerbräukeller 1939." Ed. Hans Rothfels and Theodor Eschenburg. Viertelsjahrsheft Für Zeitgeschichte [Stuttgart] Oct. 1969: 1-34. Print

10. Kershaw, Ian, Gerhard Von Spörl, and Klaus Wiegrefe. "Dem Führer Entgegen Arbeiten." DER SPIEGEL.. Web. 21 Aug. 2000. .

11. MacDonald, Callum. The Venlo Affair. Vol. 8. London: European Studies Review, 1978. Print

12. Malzahn, Claus Christian. "A German Hero: The Carpenter Elser Versus the Führer Hitler." SPIEGEL ONLINE. Web. .

13. Moorhouse, Roger. “Killing Hitler: The Third Reich and the Plots against the Führer” London: Jonathan Cape, 2006. Print.

14.  National Archives, “ Doc. No. FO 371/23107” Kew, London

15.  Official Rep. No. 19 November-22/3100 at 230 (1939). Print.Verhörprotokoll Gestapo (Gestapo Documents from the Reichsjustizministerum)

16.  Rothfels, Hans. “Die Deutsche Opposition Gegen Hitler. Eine Würdigung”. Frankfurt: 1949. 58-84. Print

17. Sicherheitspolizei, Deutsche. "Liquidierungsbefehl Georg Elser." 1945. TS. Berlin. Web. .

18.  Shirer, William L. “The rise and fall of the Third Reich; a history of Nazi Germany” New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960. Print.

19. West, Nigel. "Slightly Less Secret." International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence (2011). Web

[1] (Page 143)  Allen, Martin. Hidden Agenda. N.p.: Rowman and Littlefield, n.d. 142. Web.

[2] (Page 28) Duffyy2, James P., and Vincent L. Ricci. Target Hitler: The Plots to Kill Adolf Hitler. N.p Print.

[3]  (Page 31) Duffy, James P., and Vincent L. Ricci. Target Hitler: The Plots to Kill Adolf Hitler. N.p Print.

[4] „Roter Frontkämpfer-Bund RFB“, Kommunist Group established in 1924

[5] (Page 32) Duffy, James P., and Vincent L. Ricci. Target Hitler: The Plots to Kill Adolf Hitler. N.p Print.

[6] Mentioned in Best, Sigismund Payne. The Venlo Incident.

[7]  Argued by Malzahn, Claus Christian in "A German Hero: The Carpenter Elser Versus the Führer Hitler.", he states that for an individual like Elser, external political motivation must have been vital

[8] Goebbels, Joseph. "Er Steht Doch Unter Dem Schutz Des Allmächtigen." Letter. 9th  Nov. 1939.

[9]   Ibid  (Letter. 17th  Nov. 1939)

[10]   Ibid  (Letter. 19th  Nov. 1939)

[11] Term used by Adolf Hitler to describe the German victory of WWII

[12] Sicherheitspolizei, Deutsche. "Liquidierungsbefehl Georg Elser."

[13] Haasis, Hellmuth G. "Georg Elsers Ende Im KZ Dachau."

[14] Soldier Magazine Comment  "Pen and Sword Books: The Venlo Incident by Captain Sigismund Payne Best, Nigel Jones." Pen and Sword Books: The Venlo Incident by Captain Sigismund Payne Best, Nigel Jones.

[15] West, Nigel. "Slightly Less Secret." International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence (2011). Web

[16] I MacDonald, Callum. The Venlo Affair. Vol. 8. London: European Studies Review, 1978. Print

[17] Abbreviation “DAZ”  frequently used to call the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung

[18] “  (P128) Best, Sigismund Payne. The Venlo Incident. 2009  London: Pen & Sword, 1950. Print.

[19] (Page 58) Rothfels, Hans. Die Deutsche Opposition Gegen Hitler. Eine Würdigung. 58-84. Print

[20] . (Page 187) Best, Sigismund Payne. The Venlo Incident. 2009 ed. London: Pen & Sword, 1950. Print.

[21] .  (Page 127) Page Best, Sigismund Payne. The Venlo Incident. 2009 ed. London: Pen & Sword, 1950. Print.

[22] (Page 572) Bullock, Alan. Hitler; a Study in Tyranny. London: Odhams, 1952. Print.

[23] Ibid

[24] (Page 53) Moorhouse, Roger. Killing Hitler: The Third Reich and the Plots against the Führer. London: Jonathan Cape, 2006. Print.

[25] Official Rep. No. 19 November-22/3100 at 230 (1939). Print.Verhörprotokoll Gestapo (Gestapo Documents from the Reichsjustizministerum)

[26] Duffy, James P., and Vincent L. Ricci. Target Hitler: The Plots to Kill Adolf Hitler. N Print.

 ThemenGeschichtsPfad National Socialism in Munich The thematic history trails (ThemenGeschichtspfade) are part of the cultural history trails series (KulturGeschichtsPfade) published by the City of Munich Existing titles in the thematic history trails series: Volume 1 Volume 1 Eng. Volume 2 Volume 3 Volume 3 Eng. Der Nationalsozialismus in München National Socialism in Munich Geschichte der Lesben und Schwulen in München Orte des Erinnerns und Gedenkens Nationalsozialismus in München Places of Remembrance and Commemoration National Socialism in Munich For further information please visit: You will find a list of existing and future publications in the cultural history trails series (KulturGeschichtsPfade) at the back of this booklet. Contents Foreword 3 Practical information 5 The audio version of the ThemenGeschichtsPfad 6 National Socialism in Munich 7 A Historic Walk from Marienplatz to Königsplatz Munich – the “Capital of the Movement” 9 The November Revolution, the Räterepublik and the Counter-Revolution 1918–19 13 Anti-Semitism, the Völkisch Nationalist Milieu and Right-Wing Extremism 19 The Beginnings of the NSDAP and the Rise of Hitler 23 Hitler’s Attempted Putsch in November 1923 27 Detour: The Regime’s Public Show of Power in the “Führer City” 33 Munich in the Weimar Republic – the Formation of the Nazi Movement 41 Munich’s Bourgeoisie and the Rise of the NSDAP 45 The Nazis Seize Power: Dictatorship and the Beginnings of Persecution 49 Gleichschaltung: Professional Organisations Are Brought into Line 55  The Party Quarter – Society under Party Rule 61 Jewish Citizens of Munich Deprived of Rights and Property, Deported and Murdered 65 Acquiescence and Resistance: The Church in the Nazi State 71 Munich as an Arena for International Policies of Injustice 75 Munich, the Party Headquarters – Berlin, the Centre of Power 79 Königsplatz: Showcase of a Dictatorship 83 Dealing with the Past – the Post-War Nazi Heritage 87 The Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism in Brienner Straße 91 Further information 94 The Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism on the Internet 95 Selected bibliography 95 Photo credits 96 List of places mentioned in the ThemenGeschichtsPfad Map Foreword This thematic history trail, ThemenGeschichtsPfad, is part of a series of cultural history trails (KulturGeschichtsPfade), published by the City of Munich. Like the other cultural his- tory trails, this route takes the reader on a tour of histori- cally significant locations. Unlike them, however, it focuses not on a particular district but on the theme of “National Socialism in Munich” – a subject of central importance in the city’s history. The City of Munich is aware of its special obligation to keep alive the memory of the Nazi era and its crimes and to inform citizens and visitors about it. After all, it was here in Munich that the rise of the National Socialist movement began after the First World War. Munich was also the scene of the attempted putsch of 1923 and of Hitler’s subsequent trial. Here Hitler found influential patrons who gave him entry 3 to bourgeois circles. And it was here in 1938 that Goebbels called for the nation-wide pogrom against the Jewish popu- lation. After the Nazis seized power in 1933, Munich was chosen by Hitler as the place to celebrate the cult of Nazism and given the titles “Capital of German Art” and “Capital of the Movement”. This booklet, combined with the walking tour and the audio version (also available in English), which you can download from the internet, is intended to provide you with a compre- hensive introduction to this period of the city’s history and to encourage you, whether you are a citizen or a tourist, to find out more about National Socialism – a subject of paramount importance for our democratic culture. The Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism, currently in the planning stage, will in future also make a key contribution to this endeavour. Christian Ude Mayor of Munich Practical information The route: Marienplatz – Max-Joseph-Platz – Odeonsplatz – Hofgarten – Brienner Straße – Platz der Opfer des Nationalsozialismus – Karolinenplatz – Karlstraße – Katharina-von-Bora-Straße – Königsplatz – Platz der Opfer des Nationalsozialismus # Please see the map at the back for the individual locations Start: Marienplatz End: Königsplatz / Platz der Opfer des Nationalsozialismus Duration: approx. 1.5 – 2 hours on foot approx. 45 minutes by bicycle Public transport along the route: 45 Marienplatz Max-Joseph-Platz Odeonsplatz Königsplatz Karolinenplatz Suburban trains (S-Bahn, all lines); Underground (U3/6); Bus 52 Tram 19 U 3/6, Bus 100 U 2, Bus 100 Tram 27 For timetable information please visit: Addresses: Pre-1945 addresses are given in italics in square brackets.  National Socialism in Munich A Historic Walk from Marienplatz to Königsplatz The audio version of the ThemenGeschichtsPfad (thematic history trail) You can download the thematic history trail “National Socia- lism in Munich” as an extended audio version for your MP3 player free of charge from our websites: Wherever you see a headphones symbol 􏰀 on the map just select the corresponding track on your MP3 player and you will hear more about the historical significance of this loca- tion. In addition to the information in the booklet you will also hear personal statements by survivors of the Holocaust, contemporary witnesses, experts and people who have devoted special attention to the subject of National Socialism in Munich. Concept/realisation: Horst Konietzny Sound design: Dr. Klaus Treuheit Text assistance: Dr. Jürgen von Stenglin Translation: Melanie Newton Speakers: Howard Fine, Ruth Geiersberger Other contributors: Prof. Dr. Christopher Balme, Ulrich Chaussy, Dr. Axel Drecoll, Ernst Grube, Dr. Alexander Krause, Dr. Hans-Georg Küppers, Dr. Iris Lauterbach, Albert Lörcher †, Johanna Schmidt-Grohe †, Dr. Uri Siegel, Dr. Elisabeth Tworek, Prof. Dr. Klaus Weber With the kind assistance of the Medienzentrum München 6 􏰀 1 1 3 2 1 New Town Hall Marienplatz 8 2 Old Town Hall Marienplatz 15 3 Marienplatz Marienplatz, Marienplatz 8, Marienplatz 15 Munich – the “Capital of the Movement” Munich is more closely associated with the early history and rise of the Nazi Party (the National Socialist German Workers’ Party or NSDAP) than any other German city. The route followed by this thematic history trail takes the visitor to places that were of major significance in the origins and history of National Socialism. After the Nazi leadership seized power in Berlin, Munich not only became a showcase for the cult of Nazism. From 1933 onwards it also became home to a system of persecu- tion and repression of enormous reliability, efficiency and magnitude that in many ways served as a model for the Reich as a whole. Between 1933 and 1945 the swastika flag, the symbol of the Nazi regime of terror, flew above the New Town Hall 1 on Munich’s Marienplatz 3 . The Nazi state changed life in the city fun- damentally. On 2 August 1935 the hon- orary title “Capital of the Movement” 9  New Town Hall and Marienplatz during the Nazi era Munich’s mayor Karl Fiehler makes Hermann Göring an honorary citizen of the “Capital of the Movement” on 15 January 1943. was conferred on Munich by Adolf Hitler, who had already designated the city “Capital of German Art” in 1933. The regime thus emphasised Munich’s role as an ideological reference point and as a centre of art and culture. The local Nazi elite made enormous efforts to live up to the expectations of the Führer. In 1933 party functionaries, such as the clerk Karl Fiehler and the former stable boy Christian Weber, rose to occupy leading positions. They owed their careers in the local party apparatus primarily to their status as party veter- ans and to their proximity to Hitler. It was men like these who gave Munich the dubious distinction of pioneering the implementation of Nazi ideology, particularly the persecution of the Jews. Measures conceived and carried out in Munich were used as models for the Reich. In March 1933, for instance, one of the first concentration camps was established in the neighbouring town of Dachau. This camp served as a proto- type for the Nazi concentration camp system. On 9 November 1938 it was the “Capital of the Movement” that gave the signal for the brutal and cen- trally directed campaign of aggression against the Jews. What became known as the “Reichspogromnacht” (“Night of Pogroms”) began with an inflamma- tory speech by Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels in the Old Town Hall3. Königsplatz after it became the city’s central parading ground and venue for celebrating the Nazi cult in 1938 Munich’s coat of arms from 1936 to 1945 10  5 􏰀 2 4 4 Memorial commemorating the murder of Kurt Eisner, metal plate set in the pavement Kardinal-Faulhaber-Straße [Promenadestraße 1] 5 Bavarian Parliament Prannerstraße 8 [16 – 23] 6 6 Max-Joseph-Platz From Marienplatz via Kardinal-Faulhaber-Straße [Promenadestraße 1] and Prannerstraße 8 [16 – 23] to Max-Joseph-Platz The November Revolution, the Räterepublik and the Counter-Revolution 1918 –19 Munich was a central scene of the revolutionary events of November 1918. Even before the republic was pro- claimed in the capital Berlin, Kurt Eisner declared the end of the monarchy in Munich with his proclamation of the “Free State of Bavaria”. Following Eisner’s mur- der a Räterepublik (a Soviet-style republic of workers’ and soldiers’ councils) was proclaimed in April 1919. It was soon replaced by a second, more radical republic and a short time later brutally defeated by anti-republi- can forces. Revolutionary governments were formed all over Germany in the course of the November Revolution. Their aims were rapidly to conclude a peace treaty and to bring about a thoroughgoing de- mocratic and socialist renewal of the state and society in a country shattered by war. The end of the monarchy was 13  The November Revolution 1918: republican soldiers in front of the Bavarian Parliament, Pranner- straße declared on 7 November 1918 in Ba- varia and on 9 November in Berlin. The post-war period of upheaval was particularly tension-laden in Munich. The new prime minister, Kurt Eisner, did not succeed in allaying the bourgeois-conservative camp’s fears of a communist revolution. On 21 Februa- ry 1919 Eisner was murdered in the street 4 by the right-wing reserve lieu- tenant Anton Graf von Arco auf Valley while on his way to submit his resigna- tion to the Bavarian parliament 5 after losing the election. This triggered an escalation of the political crisis. On 7 April 1919 members of the Central Council formed by the Munich workers’ and soldiers’ councils proclaimed a Räterepublik, whose leadership and political orientation were to change twice in the following weeks. Less than a month later, on 1 May 1919, the short chapter of the Räterepublik was brought to an end by government troops summoned up by the Social Democratic Hoffmann government. Under the leadership of Franz Ritter von Epp, regular soldiers, Free Corps paramilitaries and anti-republican militias used the shooting of ten right-wing prisoners as a pretext for brutal action. Prominent leaders of the councils (Räte) were murdered or sentenced to long Kurt Eisner (1867– 1919). After the mo- narchy was abolished Eisner became the first prime minister of the new “Free State of Bavaria”. Eisner was assassi- nated on 21 February 1919: the scene of the crime in Prome- nadestraße shortly after his murder. 15  The end of the Räte- republik: captured revolutionary soldiers being led away in front of the Residenz 6 , May 1919 terms of imprisonment by right-wing judges. Probably some 650 people lost their lives in this counter-revolution. In order to restore “law and order” and to preclude any renewed flaring up of communist activities, local militias were created. These subsequently be- came the largest political “self-defence organisation” of right-wing parties and organisations in the Reich. After the Bavarian association of self-defence organisations was dissolved in mid- 1921 its members reassembled in other anti-republican or paramilitary groups. The Free Corps Werdenfels marching along Maximilian- straße, May 1919 17  􏰀 3 7 7 Headquarters of the Thule Society Maximilianstraße 4 [17] Maximilianstraße 4 [17] Anti-Semitism, the Völkisch Nationalist Milieu and Right-Wing Extremism At the turn of the century Munich already offered an especially fertile breeding ground for National Socia- lism. Following defeat in the First World War, revolu- tion and counter-revolution weakened the republican forces and strengthened anti-democratic, extreme right-wing tendencies. Bavaria became an anti-liberal and authoritarian “cell of order” (Ordnungszelle), thus favouring the emergence in Munich of an atmosphere of intolerance and anti-Semitism. This was exploited by early Nazi propaganda. After the bloody end of the Räterepublik Munich became a centre of opposition to the young democratic state. An important figure for the extreme Right was Gustav von Kahr, who was elected Bavarian prime minister as the candidate of the Bavarian People’s Party in 1920. His aim was to make Bavaria an author- itarian “cell of order” and an antithesis 19  to Berlin. This provided an ideal operat- ing environment for a broad spectrum of nationalist, anti-democratic and reac- tionary forces. Erich von Ludendorff, the former first quartermaster general of the armed forces, also exploited the political climate in Munich to gather together members of the radical natio- nalist or völkisch milieu, and he became a figurehead for the enemies of the republic. Among the network of those seeking to undermine the republic, an important role was played by the nationalist and racist Thule Society (founded in 1918), which had its headquarters at the Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in Maximilianstraße 7 . Many of its members, who included Munich’s chief of police Ernst Pöhner, held prominent public offices. Among the Thule Society’s other members were Karl Fiehler, who later became mayor of Munich, the influential “racial theorist” Alfred Rosenberg and Hitler’s later deputy Rudolf Heß. Using Munich as their base, this secret organisation fought to overthrow the Räterepublik and later supported the rise of the Nazi Party. The reactionary climate in Munich had its origins in the period around 1900. At that time the district of Schwabing was not only the centre of a bohemian artistic community but also home to adherents of an eccentric assortment of esoteric, irrational and nihilistic theo- ries. Aggressive agitation by Nazi ideol- ogists against an allegedly “un-German” culture caused liberal and progressive intellectuals like Bertolt Brecht, Lion Feuchtwanger and Ödön von Horváth to leave Munich during the 1920s for the more cosmopolitan capital Berlin. The Hotel Vier Jah- reszeiten in Maximi- lianstraße. This was where the Thule Society was founded in the early 1920s and also had its headquarters. Photo from the early 1930s. Letterhead of the Thule Society, 1919 Political poster, c. 1919. The slogan reads “Get out, no anarchists here”. Under Gustav von Kahr (1862–1934) Bavaria became a centre of opposition to the republic. Kahr created a “cell of order” in antithesis to Berlin. Erich Ludendorff (1865 –1937) became one of the leading figureheads of the right-wing camp. 20  8 8 Hofbräuhaus Platzl Platzl The Beginnings of the NSDAP and the Rise of Hitler After the First World War numerous völkisch nationalist and extremist organisations came into being amid the reactionary atmosphere in Munich. One of these right- wing splinter groups was the German Workers’ Party, founded in 1919, out of which the Nazi Party (NSDAP) emerged in 1920. The founding of the NSDAP marked the beginning of Hitler’s rise to political power. Adolf Hitler had originally come to Munich from Vienna – where he had absorbed the influences of the city’s anti-Semitic milieu – in 1913 and eked out a living as a postcard painter. His plans for a career as an artist failed, however. After serving with the Bava- rian troops in the First World War, he returned to Munich amid the revolutio- nary confusion of 1918–19 looking for a new field of activity. He found it in the city’s growing right-wing extremist 23  Anton Drexler (1884 –1942) founded the German Workers’ Party in January 1919 together with Karl Harrer, a member of the Thule Society. In September 1919 Adolf Hitler (1889 –1945) joined the German Workers’ Party, where he made his mark as a public speaker. circles. Out of a diffuse mixture of anti- Jewish prejudices, anti-Marxist conspi- racy theories and a völkisch nationalist mentality his ideological concepts be- gan to take shape. Hitler acquired his initial political skills in the anti-Jewish and anti-Marxist Ger- man Workers’ Party (Deutsche Arbei- terpartei or DAP), where, owing to his talents as a public speaker, he soon assumed a leading role. In order to dif- ferentiate itself from left-wing organi- sations the DAP was renamed the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nationalsozialistische Deut- sche Arbeiterpartei or NSDAP) at a meeting in the Hofbräuhaus 8 in Feb- ruary 1920. The membership of the NSDAP grew enormously in the subse- quent period. One of its most important instruments of power was the Storm Troopers (Sturmabteilung or SA), a strong-arm group created to protect party meetings. This party militia was responsible for attacks on Jews and on people considered to be opponents of the Nazi movement. By July 1921 Hitler had succeeded in ousting the other leaders of the NSDAP. He was elected party chairman and granted extensive powers. Within a few months Hitler had distin- guished himself as the most important populist agitator of the right-wing scene in Munich. At mass gatherings he railed against the Berlin “fulfilment politicians” (whom he accused of bowing to the demands of the allied victorious pow- ers), conjured up the spectre of the demon of Bolshevism and stirred up hatred against the Jews. As the per- sonification of the anti-democratic, na- tionalist and racist thinking of these years, Hitler became a symbol of hope for those united in their contempt for parliamentarianism and democracy, in their invocation of the “spirit of 1914” and in their belief in the superiority of a German “master race”. Propaganda tour of the NSDAP 1923: Hitler (2nd from l.), Christian Weber (1st r.) 24 25 􏰀 4 12 11 10 9 9 Residenzstraße 10 Viscardigasse (“Dodgers’ Alley”) 11 Memorial on the east side of the Feldherrnhalle 12 Feldherrnhalle Odeonsplatz From Max-Joseph-Platz to Odeonsplatz Hitler’s Attempted Putsch in November 1923 A key event in the history of the NSDAP was the failed putsch of November 1923. The restraint shown by the police, the courts and the state towards the anti-democratic enemies of the state favoured the rise of Adolf Hitler and his stylisation as the great hope for a “national renewal”. The conflict between the reactionary state of Bavaria and the Reich came to a head in 1923, when Hitler, judging the tense atmosphere to be favourable for an attempt to overthrow the republic and believing he had consolidated his political position, seized the initiative. On 8 November he disrupted a meet- ing being held by State Commissioner General Gustav von Kahr (the former Bavarian prime minister) in the Bürger- bräukeller beer hall at Gasteig. Kahr was also believed to be planning a coup, 27  A short time later, however, having recognised the putsch as an amateur- ish attempt, Kahr, Lossow and Seißer ceased to feel personally threatened and revoked the concessions they had made. In spite of this, on 9 November Hitler tried to go through with his plans by staging a demonstration. After march- ing from the Bürgerbräukeller across the Ludwigsbrücke and along Residenz- straße 9 , the putschists were stopped by Bavarian police units at the Feld- herrnhalle 11 12. In the following ex- change of fire fifteen putschists, four policemen and one innocent bystander were killed. Hitler managed to escape, but was arrested two days later. The accused with their defence lawyers at Hitler’s trial in spring 1924 (in the centre Erich Luden- dorff, on his right Hitler) The failed putsch of November 1923, glo- rified by the Nazis as the “March on the Feldherrnhalle”: Heinrich Himmler (centre, wearing glasses) at a road- block in front of the Ministry of War, intersection of Ludwigstraße and Schönfeldstraße. so in order to pre-empt him, Hitler called for a putsch and a “national rev- olution”. He declared the overthrow of the Bavarian government and forced Kahr and his associates, the command- er of the Bavarian Army, Otto von Lossow, and the chief of the Bavarian police, Hans von Seißer, to join a provi- sional government. 28  During his imprison- ment in Landsberg Fortress Hitler wrote Mein Kampf, in which he outlined his ideological beliefs and his political pro- gramme. In February 1924 Hitler went on trial for high treason in proceedings lasting two months. But the biased attitude of the Bavarian justice authorities, in par- ticular the judge Georg Neidhardt, who had already handed down a mild sen- tence to Graf Arco, turned the trial into a farce. The NSDAP was banned, and Hitler was sentenced to serve a mini- mum prison sentence of five years. The effect of Hitler’s trial and imprisonment was to make him much better known, and he succeeded in making political capital out of his detention in the Landsberg Fortress. It was in Lands- berg that he wrote Mein Kampf (My Struggle), which later sold millions of copies. By the end of 1924 Hitler had been pardoned. Nazi propaganda later reinterpreted the attempted putsch as a “March on the Feldherrnhalle”, analogous with Mus- solini’s “March on Rome”. An “eternal vigil” 11 was posted in front of the Feld- herrnhalle round the clock, and passers- by were expected to give the Hitler salute. To avoid passing the Feldherrn- halle many Munich citizens took a de- tour through the Viscardigasse, which for this reason became popularly known as the “Drückebergergassl” (Dodgers’ Alley) 10. Memorial to the dead putschists of 1923 (here: in the 1930s). 30 16 15 􏰀 5 12 13 14 Memorial to the resistance to National Socialism 12 Feldherrnhalle Odeonsplatz 13 Day of German Art Odeonsplatz 15 Haus der Deutschen Kunst Prinzregentenstraße 1 14 “Degenerate Art” exhibition 1937 Galeriestraße 4 16 Widening of Von-der-Tann-Straße to lead up to the Haus der Deutschen Kunst Von-der-Tann-Straße Odeonsplatz – Ludwigstraße – Galeriestraße 4 – Hofgarten Detour: The Regime’s Public Show of Power in the “Führer City” After 1933 Munich served as a showcase for the regime’s public demonstrations of power and propa- ganda. The Nazis wanted to compensate Munich for the loss of influence it had suffered when the regime’s centre of power shifted to Berlin by giving the city the “cultural leadership”. Gigantic urban redevelopment projects were planned. While modern artists were defamed as “degenerate”, the new rulers celebrated their philistine and backward-looking tastes in the “Capital of German Art”. From 1933 Munich celebrated its role as the birthplace of the NSDAP with bombastic pageants. Especially on 9 November, which had been declared a public holiday to mark the putsch attempt in November 1923, the city centre became the stage for a lurid spectacle. Commemoration ceremonies were held on the evening of 8 Novem- 33  The Nazis demonstrated an acute sense of how to manipulate the mass- es. Rousing parades, night-time spec- tacles of light and pathos-laden appeals were all designed to convey to the pub- lic the regime’s special right to rule. Here the propagandists drew on the repository of ancient mythology, the Nordic sagas, the Middle Ages and the operatic world of Richard Wagner. All these elements could be seen at the annual Day of German Art. The mass parades of 1937 – 1939, which went through the city centre, passing a trib- une of honour at Odeonsplatz 13 , were staged under the motto “2000 Years of German Culture” and used a mixture of Nazi ideology and nebulous ideas about Teutonic virtues and chivalry to portray in a theatrical way the claim of German cultural and intellectual superiority. Poster for the Exhibition of Great German Art, 1937 A procession along Ludwigstraße/ Odeonsplatz during the Day of German Art, 18 July 1937 ber in the Bürgerbräukeller, at the Feld- herrnhalle 12 and as of 1935 also at the Temples of Honour on Königsplatz. The temples served as the central sites of the pseudo-religious party cult, for it was here in 1935 that the coffins of the “martyrs” of November 1923 were re- buried. The annual re-enactment of the “March on the Feldherrnhalle” culmi- nated in a ritual-laden rally where the “racial community” was reminded of National Socialism’s origins in the “Capi- tal of the Movement” and exhorted to keep the faith of the “martyrs” of 9 November 1923. 34 35  The exhibition of “Degenerate Art” was opened in Galerie- straße in 1937 to coincide with the opening of the Haus der Deutschen Kunst. It displayed works of art that were to be discredited as “dege- nerate”. The propaganda exhibition of “Degene- rate Art” 14 , designed specifically to defame the artists of modernism, was held in the Hofgarten arcades in 1937. Their works were presented as evi- dence of the “cultural decay” that had taken place before 1933 and contrast- ed with supposedly “true German art”. Altogether 650 exhibits were displayed as “proof of degeneracy”, including works by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Franz Marc, Max Beckmann, Emil Nolde, George Grosz, Kurt Schwitters and Wassily Kandinsky. The Haus der Deutschen Kunst (House of German Art) in Prinzregen- tenstraße 15 was intended to confirm that Munich really was the “Capital of German Art” – the honorary title Hitler bestowed on the city on the occasion of the foundation stone ceremony in October 1933. The exhibition building was opened ceremonially in July 1937, and the art that was subsequently exhibited here conformed to the Nazis’ ideas of Nordic-Aryan superiority and their pastoral and militaristic ideals. The Haus der Deutschen Kunst in Prinzregentenstraße, designed by Paul Ludwig Troost, was inaugurated in1937. This was the venue for the annual Exhibition of Great German Art until 1944. 36  Architectural plans for Munich: the east- ern portion of the east-west axis, view from the “Monument to the Movement” to the new main railway station (model, 1940) Munich was one of the five “Führer Cities” in the planned Greater German Reich, whose urban fabric was to be radically transformed. The monumen- tal plans, which were drawn up in close consultation with Hitler himself, involved the construction of a grand avenue, the Great Axis, which was to be 2.5 kilometres long and 120 metres wide and lined with overdimensioned cultural and prestige buildings, as well as a six-kilometre east-west axis. The city was to be visually dominated by a huge dome structure for the new main railway station and a 200-metre-high “Monument to the Movement”. The Recruits being sworn in at the Feldherrn- halle, November 1935 planned completion date for the build- ing work was 1950, but in fact only a few of these projects were ever actu- ally built. Those that were include the redevelopment of Königsplatz with the nearby Nazi Party buildings and the widening of Von-der-Tann-Straße 16 to create a connection between the Haus der Kunst and the party headquarters on Königsplatz. 39  􏰀 7 19 17 War memorial (1924) 18 Hofgarten 19 Café Luitpold Brienner Straße 11 18 17 􏰀 6 From the Hofgarten to Brienner Straße Munich in the Weimar Republic – the Formation of the Nazi Movement In the years following 1918 the aggressive struggle between revolution and counter-revolution affected Munich more deeply than almost any other German city, but the economic stabilisation of the mid-1920s calmed the political mood for a time. When the NSDAP was re-founded in 1925, it initially pursued a strategy of electioneering in a bid to attain parliamentary legitimacy, albeit without ever renounc- ing the street violence of its storm-trooper mobs. The world economic crisis that followed the Wall Street Crash of 1929 plunged large sections of Munich’s popu- lation into poverty and accelerated Hitler’s rise to power. The pre-war militarism of the Kaiser’s Germany survived largely undented after 1918. Political culture and every- day life in the 1920s were marked by an increasing public presence of para- military groups. Armed street fighting and killings became customary channels 41  Café Luitpold in Brienner Straße, here in the 1930s of political struggle. Continued adherence to authoritarian militarism and glorification of the events of the war were decisive factors undermining the Weimar Republic, while the social and political crises widened the chasm between the state and citizens. The Memorial 17 to the fallen of the First World War in the Hofgarten 18 , which was inaugurated in 1924, was, for example, used repeatedly by right-wing circles as the backdrop for nationalistic commemorations. After the horrors of war, revolution and inflation, bourgeois Munich entered a new phase of calm and stability in the mid-1920s. Art and culture flourished in Germany, and the products of a new mass culture became accessible to broader sections of society. The press, radio and cinema became part of every- day life. For many people, modest pros- perity returned, so that restaurants such as the elegant Café Luitpold 19 were well patronised by affluent cus- tomers. After the ban on the NSDAP was lifted in 1925, Hitler set about systematically making it a party of the masses with the support of wealthy patrons. Hitler’s contacts in business circles and high society enhanced his own personal standing and hence that of the party as well. In the wake of the Great Depres- sion, the party’s share of the vote rose to more than 18 percent in the Reichs- tag elections of September 1930, and in July 1932 the NSDAP became the strongest party in parliament for the first time. Poster for the election of the Reich President in 1932 The NSDAP’s party newspaper from 1920 onwards was the Völkische Beobachter, published in Munich by the Franz-Eher publishing house. 42 43 21 20 HugoBruckmann’shouse Karolinenplatz 5 21 The “Brown House” Brienner Straße [45] 20 Karolinenplatz 5, Brienner Straße [45] Munich’s Bourgeoisie and the Rise of the NSDAP Under the patronage of influential supporters and admirers, Hitler’s rise led directly from the lumpen milieu of the beer halls to the salons of high society. Indeed, it was only with the financial support and social protection of these circles that the rise of the NSDAP in the Weimar Republic became possible. The Munich upper and middle classes of the 1920s embraced a number of different cultural and intellectual milieus: a conservative Catholic urban bour- geoisie nostalgic for the monarchy and holding Bavarian separatist ambitions; a progressive liberal business elite that was able to identify more closely with the democratic reforms; but also other social groups that found common ground in their resistance to moderni- sation and in their nationalistic mindset. Many people had been shaken by the 45  Karolinenplatz, c. 1930 devastation of the lost world war, the revolutionary upheavals and ensuing violent clashes and by economic instability. Consequently, even in bourgeois circles support grew for a Nazi movement that promised leadership by giving simplis- tic explanations of world affairs, pointing to scapegoats and propagating messianic visions of a future society. Hitler began to establish contacts with influential supporters and gain access to exclusive homes and salons early on. His contacts with influential and wealthy members of Munich’s elite, such as the publishers Hugo Bruckmann 20 and Ernst Hanfstaengl or the piano manufacturer Edwin Bechstein, paved the way for Hitler’s political advancement. Further- more, it was the ladies of high society who opened the doors of their salons to Hitler and offered him their patronage. With benefactresses such as Elsa Bruckmann and Helene Bechstein vying for his favour, Hitler was able to gain intro- ductions to numerous public figures, including Richard Wag- ner’s daughter-in-law Winifred, who later became an enthu- siastic supporter of the NSDAP. It was also in these circles that Hitler met his later personal pho- tographer Heinrich Hoffmann, who was to heavily influence Hitler’s public propaganda image. At the end of the 1920s donations from industrialists allowed the party to pur- chase Palais Barlow in the fashionable Brienner Straße. After being converted according to Hitler’s personal wishes, the “Brown House” 21 served as the party’s prestigious headquarters from 1930 on. Palais Barlow was bought by the NSDAP in 1930 and converted into the party head- quarters, known as the “Brown House”. It housed the offices of various party orga- nisations and high- ranking Nazi person- nel, including Hitler’s deputy Rudolf Heß and the head of the party’s legal office, Hans Frank. Anti-Semitic defama- tion – election poster of the Völkische Block appealing for the votes of workers, 1924. 46 47 􏰀 8 22 22 Gestapo headquarters in the Wittelsbacher Palais Brienner Straße 20 [50] Brienner Straße 20 [50] The Nazis Seize Power: Dictatorship and the Beginnings of Persecution On 30 January 1933 Adolf Hitler was appointed Reich Chancellor at the head of a coalition government. Although the ministers from the NSDAP formed a minority in this government, Hitler was now able to extend his power without any notable resistance. The Reichstag fire of 27 February 1933, the cause of which has never been satisfactorily explained, allowed Hitler to suspend basic rights. The Reichstag Fire Decree of 28 February 1933 marked the beginning of a wave of persecution of previously unknown proportions, to which numerous oppo- nents of the Nazis in Munich fell victim. The passing of the Malicious Practices Act on 21 March 1933 and the Enabling Act on 23 March 1933 reinforced the foundations for Nazi policies of injustice, which soon revealed the regime’s true 49  Muzzling the Social Democratic press: occupation of the Münchener Post, 9 March 1933 50 character as a totalitarian dictatorship. Violent repression of dissenters became the order of the day. The police and courts abandoned the principles of a state based on law and instead became loyal servants of the Nazi leadership. The practice of arbitrary arrest and de- tention, known as “protective cus- tody” (Schutzhaft), became a central instrument for combating opposition and resistance. In the neighbouring town of Dachau Heinrich Himmler, the Reich leader of the SS and comman- dant of the Bavarian Political Police, had one of the first concentration camps built in March 1933. Its commandant, Theodor Eicke, made the camp into a prototype and model for the Nazi con- centration camp system. Here prisoners from more than thirty countries – the regime’s political enemies, Jews, cler- gymen, homosexuals, Jehovah’s wit- nesses and Sinti and Roma – were de- tained under inhuman conditions, often for years. Following the principle of “extermination through labour” the Nazi programme of slave labour claimed countless human lives. Concentration camp near Dachau, punish- ment roll-call, 1938  The Wittelsbacher Palais: the notorious Gestapo headquarters (photo from 1940) From 1933 onwards the Wittelsbach Palais in Brienner Straße 22 was the headquarters of the Bavarian Political Police, which later became part of the Gestapo (Geheime Staatspolizei or secret state police). This regional head- quarters of terror spread fear and dread among the population. Anyone resisting the regime in Munich fell into the clut- ches of the Gestapo. The carpenter Georg Elser, for example, who attemp- ted to assassinate Hitler on 8 Novem- ber 1939 by planting a bomb in the Bürgerbräukeller, was interned in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp after weeks of interrogations in Munich and Berlin. He was later taken to Dachau, where he was shot by the SS shortly before the end of the war. The Gestapo officials in the Wittelsbacher Palais were also responsible for issu- ing orders to compile death lists and for dispatching the deportation orders that led to the annihilation of Munich’s Jewish community. Hans and Sophie Scholl and Christoph Probst, members of the “White Rose” student resistance group. The three were executed in Munich’s Stadelheim prison in February 1943. 53  􏰀 9 28 24 23 25 27 26 23 Local Branch of the German Labour Front of Munich and Upper Bavaria Brienner Straße 26–28 [46–47] 24 Antiquarian bookseller Rosenthal Brienner Straße 26 [47] 25 House of German Physicians Brienner Straße 23 [11] 26 Chamber of Commerce and Industry Max-Joseph-Straße 2 [Maximiliansplatz 8] 27 Reich leadership of the National Socialist Association of German Lecturers Max-Joseph-Straße 4 [6] 28 Association of National Socialist German Physicians Karlstraße 21 Brienner Straße 26 [47], 26 – 28 [46 – 47] and 23 [11], Max-Joseph-Straße 2 [Maximiliansplatz 8], Max-Joseph-Straße 4 [6], Karlstraße 21 Gleichschaltung: Professional Organisations Are Brought into Line The police, the courts, the civil service and local gov- ernment, private corporations, the press and professio- nal associations were brought firmly into line under the Nazi dictatorship. Judges and state officials could be appointed and dismissed at will, and a large number of NSDAP members rose to occupy leading positions. The Law for the Restoration of the Pro- fessional Civil Service (7 April 1933) con- tained a so-called “Aryan paragraph”, which allowed “non-Aryan” and politi- cally undesirable officials to be dis- missed from the civil service. Non-state organisations also adopted the Nazi guidelines in their personnel policy. After the free trade unions were dis- banded in May 1933, their assets were confiscated and many trade-union func- tionaries were arrested. They were 55  Rosenstraße in the city centre with flags for the Reichstag elections. End of March 1936. replaced by the German Labour Front (DAF), whose goal was to bring together in a single organisation all “working Germans”, regardless of their training, social status or actu- al profession, and indoctrinate them with Nazi ideology. The DAF was made particularly attractive by the leisure activities and holidays offered by its “Strength through Joy” organi- sation (“Kraft durch Freude” – KdF). The headquarters of the Upper Bavarian branch of the DAF were located at Brienner Straße 26–28 23 , and in 1935 the KdF took over the business premises and house of the Jewish antiquarian bookseller Jacques Rosenthal at Brienner Straße 26 24 . Rosenthal was forced to sell the building to the Reich Lea- dership of the NSDAP for well below its value. In 1933 Jewish doctors were deprived of their licences to practise under health insurance plans. From 1938 onwards they were only allowed to practise as “providers of treatment” for Jewish patients and not permitted to use the title “doctor”. The Association of Health-Fund Physicians of Germany, which had its Munich headquarters in the House of German Physicians 25 , inaugurated in 1935, and the Associa- tion of National Socialist German Physicians at Karlstraße 21 28 played a key role in these measures. The members of these organisations inclu- ded not only the ideologues of racially based medicine but also the advocates of medical experiments on humans, forced sterilisation and “euthanasia”. The House of German Physicians: headquar- ters of the Associa- tion of Health-Fund Physicians of Ger- many in Brienner Straße, 1938 56 57  One of the responsibilities of the Natio- nal Socialist Association of German Lecturers, founded in 1935 and located at what is today Max-Joseph-Straße 4 27 , was to push for the dismissal of politically undesirable university lectur- ers, to run the universities according to dictatorial principles and to make the curriculum conform with Nazi ideology. The conditions for bringing the univer- sities into line were favourable in Mu- nich, for even before 1933 the National Socialist German Students’ Association at the Technical University had held almost half the seats on the Students’ Committee. After seizing power, the Nazis brought all professional organi- sations into line and disbanded the trade unions. Occupation of the trade-union headquarters in Pestalozzistraße on 9 –10 March 1933 The regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry located on Maximilians- platz 26 was “brought into line” imme- diately after the Nazis came to power, and in March 1933 it expelled its Jew- ish members. The chief executive of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry was also the regional economic adviser to the NSDAP. From 1938 onwards the Chamber was involved in the “Aryani- sation” campaign and in expropriating the owners of Jewish firms. 58 59 􏰀 10 29 35 34 30 31 33 32 29 National Socialist Women’s Organisation/Reich Treasury Department (1938–1945) Karolinenplatz 2 30 Supreme SA Leadership, branch office (1934–1945) Barer Straße 7–11 31 Reich Central Propaganda Office of the NSDAP/branch office (1936–1945) Karlstraße 6–8 32 Reich Leadership of the SS/ administrative office, SS court (1936 –1945) Karlstraße 10 33 Reich Youth Leadership of the NSDAP (1936–1940) Karlstraße 14 34 Reich Leadership of the National Socialist German Students’ Association (1936–1945) Karlstraße 16 35 Reich Press Office of the NSDAP/ branch office (1938 –1945) Karlstraße 18 Karolinenplatz 2, Barer Straße 7 –11, Karlstraße 6 – 8, 10, 14, 16, 18 The Party Quarter – Society under Party Rule The distinctive classical architecture of Königsplatz fitted perfectly the Nazi leadership’s need for a grand setting for its activities. The NSDAP had already bought the Palais Barlow building near Königsplatz in 1930 and subsequently had it refurbished as the party headquar- ters (the “Brown House”). After 1933 a number of other key offices of the Nazi bureaucracy were housed in the area around Königsplatz. Making society conform with Nazi ideals and achieving the bureaucratic centrali- sation, documentation and control of all areas of life by means of a powerful and all-pervasive state and party apparatus – these were the goals of the Nazi lea- dership’s domestic policy. Although after 1933 the Nazi centre of power was moved to Berlin, key offices of the NSDAP and its associated organisations remained in Munich. The area around 61  The National Socia- list Students’ Asso- ciation celebrates its tenth anniversary in January 1936 with a consecration of the colours in the Odeon, in the centre Rudolf Heß. Day of German Youth – Hitler Youth rally at the Feldherrenhalle, 1933 Königsplatz became the central party quarter, where many party offices and Nazi organisations were housed in more than fifty buildings – from national offices responsible for the whole Reich down to regional branches. At times as many as six thousand people were em- ployed here. Alongside the party admin- istration itself – such as, for example, the Reich Leadership of the NSDAP in Brienner Straße [45] (the “Brown House”) – the head offices of many Nazi organisations were located here, including the Reich Youth Leadership 33, the Reich Treasury Department of the National Socialist Women’s Orga- nisation 29 , the Reich Leadership of the National Socialist German Students’ Association 34 , the Reich Leadership of the SS (administrative offices and the SS court) 32 , the Supreme SA Leader- ship 30 and central party institutions, such as the Reich Central Propaganda Office 31 or the Reich Press Office 35 . These institutions and authorities were tightly organised and centrally con- trolled. They were generally structured along the same lines as the regional and district organisations of the NSDAP. The party used them to penetrate soci- ety and as highly effective instruments for bringing people into line ideological- ly and for keeping them under surveil- lance and controlling their private lives. The Reich Press Office of the NSDAP at Karlstraße 18, 1938 –1945 62 63  From Sophienstraße 6 to Brienner Straße 12 [52] Jewish Citizens of Munich Deprived of Rights and Property, Deported and Murdered For Jewish Germans, 30 January 1933 – the day Hitler became Reich Chancellor – marked the transition from a campaign of verbal intimidation to one of state- organised persecution. Munich had led the way with respect to so-called Jewish policy from an early stage and had shown particular zeal in conceiving and carry- ing out measures to ostracise Jews and deprive them of their rights, long before these practices came into effect in the rest of the Reich. From 1933 onwards Jews were sys- tematically excluded from all areas of public life. By 1 April 1933 – just two months after the Nazis came to power – centrally controlled violence was being perpetrated against Jewish individuals, businesses and institutions, and exces- ses were committed in Munich as well as elsewhere. In the period that followed 65 36 􏰀11 37 36 Regional Finance Administration Sophienstraße 6 37 Main Office for Local Government of the NSDAP Gabelsbergerstraße 41 38 “Modellhaus Adolf Rothschild” Brienner Straße 12 [52] 38 Nameplates of Jewish lawyers’ offices plastered with anti-Semitic propa- ganda, Karlsplatz, 1 April 1933 Nazi propaganda, especially, made sure that orders to Jew- ish businesses declined. Citizens who patronised Jewish shops were abused in the street by uniformed officials or publicly denounced. The “Aryanisation” carried out between 1933 and 1945 took the form of a looting campaign of enormous propor- tions. The chief instigator of this campaign from 1938 on- wards, as well as its main beneficiary, was the state. Along- side the most important organ of regional authority, the Gau- leitung of Munich and Upper Bavaria, the Munich Regional Finance Administration at Sophienstraße 6 36 and the NSDAP’s Main Office for Local Government in Gabelsberger- straße 37 also played key roles in the unrestrained plunder- ing of the Jews. The greed of the “Aryanisers” was directed at private property, art collections and libraries, houses, flats and land, but also at commercial enterprises. A prominent example was the “Modellhaus Adolf Rothschild”, a dressmaker’s and furri- er’s shop located at Brienner Straße 12 38 . Owing to a dramatic fall in sales, Adolf Rothschild was forced to stage a clearance sale in September 1938 and thus sell the business for well below its value. Although Rothschild himself managed to emigrate to London, most of his assets were confiscated. From 1939 onwards many Jewish ten- ants were evicted from their flats to specially established “Jewish houses”. The boycott of Jewish businesses on 1 April 1933 – Bamberger and Hertz, Kaufinger- str. 22 66  Transit camp in Milbertshofen: from here Munich’s Jews were deported to the extermination camps in the east, 20 November 1941. Most of these were properties owned by Jews that had been taken over for this purpose. On the outskirts of the city, in Berg am Laim and Milberts- hofen, two transit camps came into being, which served from the end of 1941 as clearing points for deporta- tions to the death camps. The pogrom of November 1938, known as the “Kristallnacht” (Night of Bro- ken Glass), or “Reichspogromnacht”, marked the beginning of the final mur- derous phase of the persecution of the Jews. Following the terrible events of 9/10 November 1938, which are today The burnt-out syna- gogue in Herzog- Rudolf-Straße, November 1938 recalled by a commemorative plaque in the Old Town Hall, the Jews finally lost all their remaining rights. They were forbidden to visit theatres, cinemas, restaurants, museums or parks. Their driving licences were withdrawn, their tele- phones were cut off and they were forbidden to keep pets or use public transport. This persecution redoubled Jewish efforts to emigrate, and by 1942 almost eight thousand of Munich’s Jews had fled. However, starting in November 1941, close to three thousand citizens of Munich were de- ported to Kaunas (Lithuania), Piaski (Poland), Auschwitz and Theresienstadt, where they were murdered. Their memory is preserved by a commemorative plaque in the New Town Hall intended to express the sorrow and shame of the people of Munich and their horror at the silence that surrounded the persecution and deportations at the time. 68 69 40 12 􏰀 39 39 Bavarian Protestant Church Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 13 [Arcisstraße 13] 40 Papal nunciature (until 1934) Brienner Straße [15] Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 13 [Arcisstraße 13], Brienner Straße [15] Acquiescence and Resistance: The Church in the Nazi State The role of the Churches and the clergy during the Nazi era was contradictory. Although some groups of Chris- tians showed courageous resistance to the Nazis, high- ranking members of the clergy, in particular, remained silent in the face of the monstrous injustices being per- petrated. The Church leaders’ reticence saved the Church from becoming involved in a conflict with the Nazi lea- dership that would have threatened its very existence, but at the same time it helped to shore up the regime. The behaviour of Munich’s Cardinal Michael von Faulhaber exemplified this ambivalence. In his sermons he distanced himself from Nazi ideology, and in 1937 he drafted the Papal ency- clical Mit brennender Sorge (With Burn- ing Concern), a text that places him in the ranks of the general resistance to National Socialism. On the other hand, he avoided taking up any clear public 71  Until 1934 the Papal nunciature (the “Black House”) was located directly opposite the “Brown House” in Brienner Straße. position on the Nazi campaigns of violence and murder. Faulhaber’s commentary welcomed the new government, which, in his opinion, had “taken possession of power in a legal way unlike any revolutionary party”. His appraisal of the Nazis was certainly in tune with that of the Vatican, which in July 1933 concluded a Concordat with the German Reich, thus enhancing its international status. The chief author of the Concordat was Eugenio Pacelli (elected Pope Pius XII in 1939), the Vatican’s emissary to Munich until 1925. More- over, from 1887 until 1934 the Papal nunciature (the “Black House”) 40 was located opposite the “Brown House” in Brienner Straße [15]. In the Protestant Church 39 Hans Meiser, the Bishop of Bavaria, who came to office in May 1933, was initially close to the regime. Not only did the Protestant Church “bring itself into line” and agree to follow the Führer, Meiser also showed sympathy for the “German Christians” (Deutsche Christen), a group with ties to the regime. Although Meiser distanced himself from this position in 1933–34 and went over to supporting the “Confessing Church”, which was critical of the Nazis, he professed to Hitler that he belonged Hans Meiser, Bishop of Bavaria from 1933 to 1955, at the head- quarters of the Bavarian Protestant Church, 1934 to his “most loyal opposition”. More- over, there was no official protest by the Protestant Church against the in- justices of the Nazi regime. Nevertheless, Church resistance in Munich was not merely a marginal phe- nomenon. As a rule, though, resistance came not from leading or prominent Church functionaries but almost exclu- sively from the grass roots. Some cou- rageous members of the clergy and lay people – such as Rupert Mayer, Fritz Gerlich and Alfred Delp – paid for their commitment with their health or their lives. 72 73 Pater Rupert Mayer (1876 –1945) was a leading figure in Catholic resistance to the Nazis in Munich. 13 􏰀 41 “Führerbau” Arcisstraße 12 42 41 42 Party Administration Building and Reich Treasury of the NSDAP Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 10 [Arcisstraße 10] Arcisstraße 12, Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 10 Munich as an Arena for International Policies of Injustice A central concern of the Nazi leadership was to over- come Germany’s international isolation. The aggressive foreign policy it pursued to this end was designed to make the German Reich not only a dominant power within Europe but also a world power. Although foreign policy decisions were, of course, taken mainly in the capital Berlin, Munich also played an important role in the country’s international ambitions. Meetings with high-ranking guests from foreign states were held in the “Führer- bau” (Hitler’s office building) in Arcis- straße 41 . Here the ground was pre- pared for important foreign policy moves – for example, in talks between Hitler and the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini. Fascist Italy was Hitler’s most important ally in his striving to make Germany a world power. The “Berlin-Rome Axis”, which came into being in 1936, provided 75  Mussolini’s state visit to Munich – Hitler and the Italian dicta- tor in front of the Temples of Honour (in the background the “Führerbau”), 25 September 1937 both states with a vital basis for pursuing their expansionist interests. This was one of the reasons why Mussolini made several state visits to Munich. In September 1937 the Nazi regime used a visit by “Il Duce” for a display of national consciousness and military strength. This demonstration of combat-readiness went hand in hand with an aggressive German foreign policy, which included military intervention in the Spanish Civil War of 1936–37 and the annexation of Austria in March 1938. At the height of the Sudeten crisis in Czechoslovakia a meet- ing was held in September 1938 attended by Hitler, Musso- lini, the French Prime Minister Edouard Daladier and the British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain. This meeting, held in the “Führerbau”, resulted in the conclusion of the Munich Agreement, which was to have grave consequen- ces: in a bid to achieve “peace in our time” Daladier and Chamberlain allowed themselves to be pressured into con- ceding the Sudetenland to Germany. This policy of appease- ment represented a major foreign policy victory for Hitler. The “Führerbau” and the Party Administration Building located on the south side of Brienner Straße 42 , where the files on NSDAP members were kept, were built according to plans by the architect Paul Ludwig Troost (1878–1934). After 1957 the former “Führerbau” became the University of Music and Performing Arts. The former Administration Building has housed the Central Institute for History of Art since 1947. 76 77 The “Führerbau” of the NSDAP (left), completed in 1937, was the venue for the Munich Agreement. The “four powers conference” (from l. Chamberlain, Daladier, Hitler, Mussolini) on 29 September 1938 sealed the fate of the Sudetenland, handing it over to the German Reich. Great Britain and France hoped thus to avert war. 45 43 40 44 40 Staff of Hitler’s deputy, 44 Rudolf Heß (1936–1941); Party Chancellery Martin Bormann (from 1941); Brienner Straße [15] 45 43 Central information board on the former party quarter; intersection Arcisstraße/Brienner Straße NSDAP Supreme Court/ administrative office (1935–1945) Karolinenplatz 4 Main archives, Reich organisation- al leadership, main personnel and organisational office of the NSDAP (1934–1945) Barer Straße 15 43 information board Brienner Straße, Karolinenplatz (Barer Straße, Karlstraße, Katharina-von-Bora-Straße) Munich, the Party Headquarters – Berlin, the Centre of Power As the capital of the German Reich, Berlin was the political centre of the Nazi state. Munich, as the “Capital of the Movement”, served above all for the glorification of the NSDAP. It was also the home of the Reich leader- ship of the NSDAP. Other Nazi organisations and asso- ciations had either their headquarters or branch offices in the area around Königsplatz. After 1933 Munich increasingly played a subordinate role to Berlin in the Nazi power system. Nevertheless, the “Capital of the Movement” remained the centre of the party’s bureaucratic apparatus. A number of influential party figures, like Rudolf Heß, the Führer’s deputy from 1936 to 1941, had their offices here. Martin Bormann, the head of the Party Chancellery from 1941 to 1945, occupied the former Papal nun- ciature 40 , while the headquarters of 79  The Party Supreme Court at Karolinen- platz 4 44 was responsible for settling internal party conflicts and disciplining individual members whose behaviour might be damaging to the party. The Main Archives of the NSDAP, headed by Robert Ley 45 , were housed at Barer Straße 15. These archives played an important role in portraying the history of the party in pseudo-religious, mytho- logical terms. Between 1933 and 1938 the nineteenth- century ensemble on Königsplatz was modified to make the square a central parading ground and venue for celebrating the Nazi cult. Hitler’s deputy Rudolf Heß (1894 –1987) In the Temples of Honour the coffins of the “martyrs” of the failed putsch of 1923 were publicly displayed. the Reich Treasurer of the NSDAP were in the Party Administration Building 42 . The Führer’s deputy (from 1941 on- wards the Party Chancellery) was in charge of control and leadership func- tions vis-à-vis the party and the state – for instance, in racial and personnel policy. The huge bureaucracy headed by the Reich Treasurer (which at times employed more than 3,200 people) was not only responsible for managing and increasing the NSDAP’s enormous assets, but also supervised the party’s membership, which at the end of the war numbered around eight million. 80  14 􏰀 46 47 47 46 Königsplatz 47 Temples of Honour Arcis-/Katharina-von-Bora-Straße/Brienner Straße Königsplatz, Arcis-/Katharina-von-Bora-Straße Ecke Brienner Straße Königsplatz: Showcase of a Dictatorship No other place in Munich is so closely connected with the Nazi movement and its public shows of power as Königsplatz 46. Its grand classicist ambience made the square the ideal backdrop for staging Nazi spectacles. In 1935 the square’s appearance was modified consid- erably: it was turned into a parade ground and two Temples of Honour were built, along with other new buildings, on its eastern perimeter. By virtue of its size and central location, Königsplatz had already become a gath- ering point for political meetings during the 1920s, and even before 1933 the NSDAP showed an interest in this pub- lic space so close to its “Brown House”. As its membership and political signifi- cance grew, so did the party’s need for ostentatious parades. In 1933 Königs- platz was the venue for one of the first 83  The newly built Temples of Honour 47 and the two central party buildings 41 42 in Arcisstraße fundamentally altered the original architectural balance of the square. The coffins of the “martyrs” of the failed putsch of November 1923 were put on public show in the Temples of Honour, which served as the quasi-religious focus of the square. An “eter- nal vigil” was posted here round the clock. The Glyptothek (1830), the Propylaea (1862) and the Antikensammlung (built in 1845 and now a museum housing a collection of classi- cal art) served from then on merely as a classicist backdrop. Military parade on Königsplatz, 19 November 1938 major public demonstrations of power. During the nationally organised book-burning on 10 May 1933, works by Erich Kästner, Heinrich Mann, Karl Marx, Erich Maria Remarque, Kurt Tucholsky, Theodor Wolff and many others were burned here. In 1935 twenty thousand granite paving slabs were laid on the square and it was equipped with a modern electrical system capable of providing theatrical lighting for public events. In Arcisstraße two Temples of Honour and two monumental party buildings flanked the whole ensemble. The square was thus turned into the central parade ground for mass rallies in Munich. Parade to mark 9 November, in the back- ground the Propylaea from the era of King Ludwig I, 9 November 1935 The book-burning on Königsplatz on 10 May 1933 84 85 [Herzog-Max-Straße 3 –7], [Herzog-Rudolf-Straße 3 – 5] Dealing with the Past – the Post-War Nazi Heritage By the time the U.S. Army entered Munich on 30 April 1945 the city had been largely reduced to rubble. Later reconstruction efforts aimed to restore the city to how it had been prior to the Third Reich. Nazi-era buildings that had remained intact were assigned new functions and no attempt was made to draw attention to their former use. The question of how Munich should address its past therefore became a controversial issue that sparked many debates. Air raids had a huge impact on the city and the lives of its citizens, with bombs destroying a large part of the city centre. American forces liberated Dachau con- centration camp on 29 April 1945 and reached Munich a day later. The capitu- lation of the German armed forces on 8 May 1945 sealed the fate of the Nazi regime, and an American military gov- ernment took control of Munich. 87 48 48 Liberal Synagogue (demolished 1938) Herzog-Max-Straße 3–7 49 Orthodox Synagogue (destroyed 1938) Herzog-Rudolf-Straße 3–5 49 Today there is little visual evidence of the era of Nazi rule or the damage caused by the war. When the city was rebuilt, advocates of reconstruction of the pre-1933 architecture won the day. The Temples of Honour on Königsplatz were demolished by the American military government in 1947, although the pedestals were later declared historic monu- ments. The granite slabs that had been laid on Königsplatz in the mid-1930s were replaced with grass in 1988, restor- ing the square to its original appearance. The New Town Hall on Marienplatz served as the head- quarters of the American military government. The city centre in 1945 with the Frauenkirche in the background After the war, former concentration camp inmates, forced labourers, POWs and refugees from the east gathered in Munich. Very few of Munich’s Jewish citizens survived the concentration camps to return to the city. The Jewish Community 48 49 , which had twelve thousand members before the Nazis took power, had only three hundred at the end of 1945. 88 89 Commemoration at the Feldherrnhalle, 1947 A small plaque mounted in 1984 on the building now occupied by the Bayerische Landesbank (Bank of Bavaria), at the intersection of Brienner Straße and Türkenstraße, states that this was the site of the Gestapo headquarters.  15 􏰀 21 21 Former ”Brown House“ Brienner Straße; site of the future documentation centre The Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism in Brienner Straße Addressing the history of National Socialism in a manner designed to combat ignorance has in recent decades become a central aspect of the political and cultural iden- tity of the Federal Republic of Germany. Today, more than ever before, the debate about the Holocaust and the Nazi regime are part of the German culture of remem- brance, which is increasingly focusing on places associat- ed with those responsible for Nazi crimes in addition to places connected with their victims. The first efforts to document the city’s Nazi past in the form of a public educa- tion centre date back to 1945. In 1989 the city council suggested establishing a “House of Contemporary History” on the site of the former “Brown House”. This project was not pursued, however. 91  In 1947 the remains of the Temples of Honour were demol- ished in line with a directive issued by the Allied Control Council on 13 May 1946, ordering all Nazi monuments to be removed. Not least as a result of efforts by indi- vidual citizens and citizens’ initiatives, the idea was revived in 2001. The City of Munich and the Free State of Bavaria resolved to create a place in Munich to commemorate the history of National Socialism and to address the city’s role during the Nazi era. Following some discussion, a decision was eventually taken to build a documentation centre as a place where citizens and other visitors could learn about political history. The location chosen for the new centre was the site of the former “Brown House” 21 (destroyed during the war) in Brienner Straße at the heart of the former party quarter. Between 2006 and 2008 the City of Munich, the State of Bavaria and the German federal government reached an agreement to split the cost of build- ing the centre three ways. The win- ning design in the international architec- tural competition for the new centre was a plain, white cube-shaped build- ing conceived to contrast with the sur- rounding Nazi-era architecture. An interdisciplinary academic team at the city’s Department of Culture is current- ly working on a concept for the future exhibition and educational facilities at the new centre. The centre will be built as a cooperation project by the City of Munich, the Free State of Bavaria and the German feder- al government. Following its inauguration, planned for the end of 2013, the Documentation Centre will be run by the City of Munich. The winning design for the new building was submitted by the Berlin firm of archi- tects Georg • Scheel • Wetzel. In addition to four floors of exhibition space it will also include educational facilities, a library and a hall for holding public events. 92  Further information The Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism on the internet For more detailed information please visit our website: ThemenGeschichtsPfad (Thematic History Trail) “National Socialism in Munich“ The thematic history trail as a brochure, an enlarged audio version and a web presentation is available both in German and English. Selected bibliography Richard J. Evans, The Coming of the Third Reich, London 2003 Richard J. Evans, The Third Reich in Power, 1933–1939, London 2005 Ian Kershaw, Hitler, 2 vols., London 1998/2000 David Clay Large, Where Ghosts Walked. Munich’s Road to the Third Reich, New York 1997 Gavriel D. Rosenfeld, Munich and Memory. Architecture, Monuments and the Legacy of the Third Reich, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London 2000 München – »Hauptstadt der Bewegung«, exhibition catalogue, Münchner Stadtmuseum, Munich 2005 95  Existing and planned titles in the cultural history trails series (KulturGeschichtsPfade) (available in German only): Stadtbezirk 01 Stadtbezirk 02 Stadtbezirk 03 Stadtbezirk 04 Stadtbezirk 05 Stadtbezirk 06 Stadtbezirk 07 Stadtbezirk 08 Stadtbezirk 09 Stadtbezirk 10 Stadtbezirk 11 Stadtbezirk 12 Stadtbezirk 13 Stadtbezirk 14 Stadtbezirk 15 Stadtbezirk 16 Stadtbezirk 17 Stadtbezirk 18 Stadtbezirk 19 Stadtbezirk 20 Stadtbezirk 21 Stadtbezirk 22 Stadtbezirk 23 Stadtbezirk 24 Stadtbezirk 25 Altstadt-Lehel Ludwigsvorstadt-Isarvorstadt Maxvorstadt Schwabing-West Au-Haidhausen Sendling Sendling-Westpark Schwanthalerhöhe Neuhausen-Nymphenburg Moosach Milbertshofen-Am Hart Schwabing-Freimann Bogenhausen Berg am Laim Trudering-Riem Ramersdorf-Perlach Obergiesing Untergiesing-Harlaching Thalkirchen-Obersendling- Forstenried-Fürstenried-Solln Hadern Pasing-Obermenzing Aubing-Lochhausen-Langwied Allach-Untermenzing Feldmoching-Hasenbergl Laim For further information please visit: Photo credits All photographs courtesy of Stadtarchiv München except pages: 16; 17; 24, bottom; 25; 28, 76; 77, r. (Bayerische Staatsbibliothek) 51 (Bundesarchiv Koblenz) 73, top (Landeskirchliches Archiv Nürnberg) 15, l.; 21, bottom; 30; 35 (Stadtmuseum München) 89, r. (Landeshauptstadt München) 93 (Georg Scheel Wetzel, Berlin) 96 Imprint: Landeshauptstadt München Kulturreferat, Burgstr. 4, 80331 München Stadtarchiv, Winzererstr. 68, 80797 München © 4th impression 2010 Concept Ursula Saekel M.A., Dr. Andreas Heusler, Dr. Angelika Baumann Responsible for content Kulturreferat: Dr. Angelika Baumann, Ursula Saekel M.A. Stadtarchiv: Dr. Andreas Heusler Translation Melanie Newton Editor Dr. Kathrin Kollmeier Concept and realisation of the audio version Horst Konietzny, xinober Graphic design Heidi Sorg & Christof Leistl, München Printed and bound by Diet GbR 2010