2000 years of history, Stauffenberg and the attack on Hitler

2000 years of history, Stauffenberg and the attack on Hitler

On Friday May 7, France Inter will rebroadcast the number of its program 2000 years of history devoted toattack on Hitler of July 20, 1944 and to its author Claus von Stauffenberg. It will be the occasion to rediscover the personality of this figure of the military resistance to the Nazi Dictator and the famous "Operation Valkyrie". Von Stauffenberg, pure representative of the German military aristocracy, born in 1907, was originally an enthusiastic supporter of the Third Reich ...

Like many Germans from conservative circles, he welcomes the rise to power of Adolf Hitler, who sets out to restore the dignity, honor and greatness of a nation humiliated by the Treaty of Versailles ...

Brilliant horseman and staff officer, Stauffenberg fought in Poland, France, then in North Africa and rose to the rank of Colonel. Seriously injured in Tunisia (he loses an eye, his right hand, and three fingers of his left hand) at the beginning of 1943, his return to Germany is the occasion for him to express his first doubts about the Nazi regime.

Quickly convinced that the Reich could no longer win the war, horrified by the accounts of fellow officers on the atrocities committed by the Germans in the east, Stauffenberg gradually approached military and conservative resistance to Hitler. He becomes one of the most dynamic elements as various assassination attempts against the Führer fail and the pressure of the Gestapo on the conspirators increases.

In July 1944, Stauffenberg became Chief of Staff of the Commander of the Reserve Army, a post which should allow him access to Hitler on a regular basis. This should allow him to drop a bomb close enough to the dictator to kill him for sure. After two failed attempts (July 11 and 15, 1944), Stauffenberg succeeded in extremis on July 20, during a meeting within the Wolf's Lair: Hitlet's HQ in East Prussia.

If Stauffenberg can see firsthand that the bomb exploded, this one will not kill Hitler, once again saved by the game of circumstances (and by a table leg ...). The conspirators convinced of the death of the Fürhrer, however, initiated Operation Valkyrie, the mobilization of units of the Army Reserve in order to seize the centers of power in Berlin. The Operation quickly turned into a fiasco when Hitler manifested himself to officers loyal to the regime.

Stauffenberg and his collaborators, cornered in their offices on Bendlerstrasse, were finally arrested and then summarily executed. Total failure, the attempt of the mutilated colonel will nonetheless prove to the world that certain German officers will have resisted Nazism by arms.

2000 years of history, on France inter at 13:30. Program available as a podcast.

Video: The Secret Plot To Kill Hitler. Operation Valkyrie. Timeline