Monday, July 20, 2009

The July 20 Plot

Bendlerblock MemorialThree score and five years ago today, Count Claus von Stauffenberg attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler.

I wrote this five years ago.

In the course of the past year, the motion picture Valkyrie was released. I have watched it, and I would say it is an improvement over the movies that portray high-ranking Nazi officers as noblemen – also known as “vons.” However, it seemed that the noble background of the plotters in this movie was something almost to be hidden. I personally would have liked a movie with more emphasis on the noble background of the heroes.

The great and late Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn referred to Allen Welsh Dulles' Germany's Underground: The Anti-Nazi Resistance for an account of German World War Two resistance.

I have also watched another motion picture of World War Two resistance this calendar year, namely Max Manus. The movie has been under some fierce attack for lack of historical accuracy. One small detail that caught my attention was the stating of the terms Cabinet and King – in that order. Not only is stating the King before his Cabinet formally incorrect, but – as a friend of mine pointed out – they probably would not have done so at the time.

1 comment:

El Jefe Maximo said...

It is a terrible pity that the 20 July plot did not work. . .but by then it was possibly too late to matter in geopolitical terms: with the western allies on the continent.

The real missed opportunities were (1) the coup that never happened in 1938 before Munich; (2)Operation "Spark" or "Flash" -- the attempted bombing of Hitler's aircraft on its way back from a visit to Army Group Centre HQ near Smolensk in the summer of 1943. But for me, the most intriguing opportunity for a better outcome was the Elser bomb plot of November 1939. Elser(admittedly a communist or a socialist) did his work well, his plan was good, and it was carefully executed, only failing because of Hitler's change of schedule.

Had the plot worked, the most likely beneficiaries would have been the conservative and monarchist elements who disapproved of the Nazi regime (they controlled the Army). Also, the attempt was made before the outbreak of full scale war in the west.

There would have been a good possibility of some sort of peace with the restoration of the House of Hohenzollern, and at least the 1914 frontiers in the East. No holocaust, no devastation of the greater part of Europe, no overthrow of the traditional order. All in all, that would have been a better outcome all round, and that was the point in time at which this was reasonably achievable.