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  • Joseph Goebbels | German propagandist | Britannica.com
    propagandist he is generally accounted responsible for presenting a favourable image of the Nazi regime to the German people Following Hitler s suicide Goebbels served as chancellor of Germany for a single day before he and his wife Magda Goebbels poisoned their six children and took their own lives Goebbels was the third of five children of Friedrich Goebbels a pious Roman Catholic factory clerk and Katharina Maria Odenhausen His

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/biography/Joseph-Goebbels (2016-02-13)
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  • Erich Ludendorff | German general | Britannica.com
    Hollweg in the delusory hope that a strong man could be found to assume the leadership of the Reich On March 21 1918 Ludendorff opened a general offensive on the Western Front with the object of smashing the Anglo French armies and forcing a decision in Europe before the Americans arrived in force But he had overestimated the strength of the German armies the offensive failed and when in the autumn of 1918 the collapse of the German allies Austria Hungary Bulgaria and Turkey was imminent Ludendorff demanded immediate negotiations for an armistice For a while the nerves of the hopelessly overworked general gave way and a psychiatrist had to be summoned to supreme headquarters When Ludendorff realized the severity of the armistice conditions he insisted that the war be carried on When he saw that the political leaders were not prepared to do this he offered his resignation which William II accepted on Oct 26 1918 At the same time the emperor much to Ludendorff s distaste ordered Hindenburg to remain at his post A titan of willpower and energy who had attempted the impossible was suddenly torn away from his sphere of activity the shock was immense Ludendorff met the revolution that broke out in November 1918 with complete resignation and went into exile in Sweden for several months While according to Prussian custom general staff officers accepted joint responsibility for all decisions made they had to preserve strict anonymity Ludendorff however whose ambition was as immense as his strategic gifts at the close of the lost war claimed to have been the sole real commander of World War I He asserted that he had been deprived of victory by sinister forces that had been operating behind the scenes he was he claimed like Siegfried in the heroic Germanic sagas a victim of a stab in the back By propagating the legend that the German army undefeated in the field was sabotaged by the home front he did a great deal to poison public life in the Weimar Republic Postwar political activities Ludendorff Erich Encyclopædia Britannica Inc During the next 20 years Ludendorff led a bizarre life Adopting the role of the betrayed and misunderstood commander he took part in the unsuccessful coups d état of Wolfgang Kapp in 1920 and of Adolf Hitler in 1923 and in 1925 he ran for president against his former commander in chief Hindenburg whom he now bitterly hated From 1924 to 1928 he was a National Socialist member of Parliament Consistently pursuing a purely military line of thought Ludendorff developed after the war the theory of total war which he published as Der Totale Krieg The Nation at War in 1935 In the first half of the 19th century the great military theorist of the Prussian general staff Carl von Clausewitz had advanced the doctrine of war as an extension of politics by different means Ludendorff advocated the diametrically opposite view that politics should serve the conduct of war for which

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/biography/Erich-Ludendorff (2016-02-13)
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  • Reinhard Heydrich | German Nazi official | Britannica.com
    Gestapo and the SS and their imprisonment in concentration camps In 1939 Heydrich became head of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt Reich Security Central Office which was in charge of all security and secret police in the Third Reich Heydrich masterminded the fake Polish attack on the Gleiwitz radio transmitter that provided Hitler with a pretext for invading Poland on September 1 1939 Soon afterward Heydrich and Adolf Eichmann began organizing the first deportations of Jews from Germany and Austria to ghettos in occupied Poland Heydrich also organized the Einsatzgruppen deployment groups mobile killing squads that murdered almost one million Soviet and Polish Jews in German occupied territories To increase German control of the ghettos he ordered the establishment of Judenräte Jewish Councils to implement German directives in the Jewish ghettos of German occupied Poland Heydrich was instrumental in the Nisko and Lublin plans to confine Jews to limited districts set up to contain them and in the proposed deportation of all European Jews to the island of Madagascar a plan that was never implemented Some historians believe that the impracticality of this plan encouraged the Nazi course of mass murder On July 31 1941 Hermann Göring commissioned Heydrich to carry out a final solution to the Jewish question authorizing him to take all organizational and administrative steps necessary for the extermination of the Jews Heydrich chaired the notorious Wannsee Conference January 20 1942 whose participants discussed the logistics of the final solution In September 1941 Heydrich had been appointed Reichsprotektor governor of Bohemia and Moravia now in the Czech Republic He combined repressive measures and mass executions with an attempt to mollify Czech peasants and workers by improving social and economic conditions His success in pacifying the Czech population lulled Heydrich into a false sense of security and on May 27 1942 two Free Czech agents bombed and shot him while he was riding in his car without an armed escort He died June 4 in a Prague hospital Gestapo officials retaliated for his death by executing hundreds of Czechs and wiping out the entire village of Lidice Comments Share Email Print Cite You may also be interested in Adolf Hitler Adolf Eichmann Heinrich Himmler Ernst Kaltenbrunner Klaus Barbie Hermann Göring Josef Dietrich Hans Frank Paul Hausser Joseph Goebbels Joachim von Ribbentrop Albert Speer Keep exploring World Wars The Second World War Fact or Fiction World War II Fact or Fiction Editor Picks 7 Books for Young Children that Parents Can Enjoy as Much as Their Kids Riding Freedom 10 Milestones in U S Civil Rights History What made you want to look up Reinhard Heydrich To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/biography/Reinhard-Heydrich (2016-02-13)
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  • Joachim von Ribbentrop | German diplomat | Britannica.com
    effectively proved correct in the short run In the meantime Ribbentrop had also negotiated the Anti Comintern Pact with Japan 1936 and after his appointment as minister of foreign affairs in February 1938 he signed the Pact of Steel with Italy May 22 1939 linking Europe s two most aggressive fascist dictatorships in an alliance in case of war Ribbentrop s greatest diplomatic coup however was the German Soviet Nonaggression Pact of Aug 23 1939 which cleared the way for Hitler s attack on Poland on Sept 1 1939 thus beginning World War II Antonescu Ion German Federal Archive Bundesarchiv Bild 183 B23201 photograph Laux With the outbreak of the war Ribbentrop s importance rapidly declined He signed the Tripartite Pact with Japan and Italy Sept 27 1940 which provided for mutual assistance against the United States but thereafter diplomacy became a secondary concern Ribbentrop maintained himself only through Hitler s backing Even this support faded after some Foreign Office personnel were implicated in the plot of July 20 1944 to assassinate Hitler Nürnberg trial verdict Stock footage courtesy The WPA Film Library Ribbentrop was captured in Hamburg on June 14 1945 tried before the International Military Tribunal at Nürnberg found guilty on four major counts and hanged While in prison he wrote Zwischen London und Moskau 1953 Between London and Moscow Eng trans The Ribbentrop Memoirs Comments Share Email Print Cite You may also be interested in Adolf Hitler Hermann Göring Adolf Eichmann Martin Bormann Albert Speer Alfred Rosenberg Julius Streicher Klaus Barbie Hans Frank Wilhelm Frick Robert Ley Walther Funk Keep exploring World Wars The Second World War Fact or Fiction World War II Fact or Fiction 7 Notorious Women Criminals There s a Riot Goin On Riots in U S History Part Two What made you want to look up Joachim von Ribbentrop To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Inc MLA style Joachim von Ribbentrop Encyclopædia Britannica Encyclopædia Britannica Online Encyclopædia Britannica Inc 2016 Web 12 Feb 2016 http www britannica com biography Joachim von Ribbentrop APA style Joachim von Ribbentrop 2016 In Encyclopædia Britannica Retrieved from http www britannica com biography Joachim von Ribbentrop Harvard style Joachim von Ribbentrop 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Online Retrieved 12 February 2016 from http www britannica com biography Joachim von Ribbentrop Chicago Manual of Style Encyclopædia Britannica Online s v Joachim von Ribbentrop accessed February 12 2016 http www britannica com biography Joachim von Ribbentrop While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules there may be some discrepancies Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions Update Link Click anywhere

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  • Martin Bormann | German Nazi leader | Britannica.com
    security He controlled the personal access of others to Hitler and drew up the Führer s schedule and appointments calendar insulating him from the independent counsel of his subordinates Bormann was a rigid and unbending guardian of Nazi orthodoxy he was a major advocate of the persecution and extermination of Jews and Slavs and he played a role in expanding the German slave labour program He disappeared shortly after the death of Hitler and it was presumed that he was either dead or in hiding He was indicted August 29 1945 along with other Nazi leaders on charges of war crimes and was found guilty and sentenced to death in absentia by the International Military Tribunal at Nürnberg on October 1 1946 Later reports especially in the 1960s alleged that Bormann had escaped and had been living in South America possibly in Paraguay However early in 1973 a Berlin forensic expert established with near certainty that one of two skeletons unearthed during construction in West Berlin in December 1972 was that of Bormann and on April 11 1973 West German authorities officially declared him dead That skeleton was subjected to DNA testing in 1998 and investigators confirmed that the remains were those of Bormann Comments Share Email Print Cite Last Updated 10 20 2014 You may also be interested in Hermann Göring Adolf Eichmann Joachim von Ribbentrop Albert Speer Alfred Rosenberg Julius Streicher Klaus Barbie Hans Frank Wilhelm Frick Walther Funk Robert Ley Baldur von Schirach Keep exploring World Wars The Second World War Fact or Fiction World War II Fact or Fiction Editor Picks Our Favorite Harry Potter Characters 5 Famous Battle Axes What made you want to look up Martin Bormann To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Inc MLA style Martin Bormann Encyclopædia Britannica Encyclopædia Britannica Online Encyclopædia Britannica Inc 2016 Web 12 Feb 2016 http www britannica com biography Martin Bormann APA style Martin Bormann 2016 In Encyclopædia Britannica Retrieved from http www britannica com biography Martin Bormann Harvard style Martin Bormann 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Online Retrieved 12 February 2016 from http www britannica com biography Martin Bormann Chicago Manual of Style Encyclopædia Britannica Online s v Martin Bormann accessed February 12 2016 http www britannica com biography Martin Bormann While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules there may be some discrepancies Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions Update Link Click anywhere inside the article to add text or insert superscripts subscripts and special characters You can also highlight a section and use the tools in this bar to modify existing content Add

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  • Albert Speer | German architect and Nazi official | Britannica.com
    production 1942 45 Speer studied at the technical schools in Karlsruhe Munich and Berlin and acquired an architectural license in 1927 After hearing Hitler speak at a Berlin rally in late 1930 he enthusiastically joined the Nazi Party January 1931 and so impressed the Führer by his efficiency and talent that soon after Hitler became chancellor Speer became his personal architect He was rewarded with many important commissions including grandiose

    Original URL path: http://www.britannica.com/biography/Albert-Speer (2016-02-13)
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  • Josef Dietrich | German military officer | Britannica.com
    general An able field commander with good battle intuition Dietrich continued to head the LAH leading it into battle at Kharkov and Kursk on the Eastern Front In 1943 the LAH was expanded into the I SS Panzer Corps In June 1944 this unit was called to the Western Front where Dietrich joined the desperate resistance to the Allied invasion of Normandy Promoted to SS Oberstgruppenführer colonel general he was given command of the regrouped though much depleted Fifth Panzer Army which served as the rear guard of the German retreat across northern France In October 1944 he was placed in command of the Sixth Panzer Army which spearheaded the German offensive through the Ardennes in the Battle of the Bulge He led this unit in Hungary and Austria during the closing phase of the war Upon surrendering to American forces in May 1945 Dietrich was held partly responsible for the murder of American prisoners at Malmédy by SS troops during the Ardennes offensive In 1946 he was sentenced to 25 years imprisonment and he was released after serving 10 years of his sentence In 1957 he was convicted in a German court for his role in Hitler s purge of the SA in 1934 and served another 20 months in prison on this charge Comments Share Email Print Cite You may also be interested in Paul Hausser Adolf Hitler Walther Model Hermann Göring Heinrich Himmler Erich Ludendorff Adolf Eichmann Reinhard Heydrich Gerd von Rundstedt Rudolf Hess Klaus Barbie Hasso baron of Manteuffel Keep exploring World Wars The Second World War Fact or Fiction World War II Fact or Fiction The 12 Months of the French Republican Calendar There s a Riot Goin On Riots in U S History Part Two What made you want to look up Josef Dietrich To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Inc MLA style Josef Dietrich Encyclopædia Britannica Encyclopædia Britannica Online Encyclopædia Britannica Inc 2016 Web 12 Feb 2016 http www britannica com biography Josef Dietrich APA style Josef Dietrich 2016 In Encyclopædia Britannica Retrieved from http www britannica com biography Josef Dietrich Harvard style Josef Dietrich 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Online Retrieved 12 February 2016 from http www britannica com biography Josef Dietrich Chicago Manual of Style Encyclopædia Britannica Online s v Josef Dietrich accessed February 12 2016 http www britannica com biography Josef Dietrich While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules there may be some discrepancies Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions Update Link Click anywhere inside the article to add text or insert superscripts subscripts and special characters You

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  • Rudolf Hess | German Nazi leader | Britannica.com
    influence was further undermined by Martin Bormann and other top Nazi leaders Hess decided in the spring of 1941 to bring the continuing military struggle between Germany and Britain to an end by means of a spectacular coup and thereby restore his flagging prestige On May 10 he secretly flew alone from Augsburg and landed by parachute in Scotland with peace proposals demanding a free hand for Germany in Europe and the return of former German colonies as compensation for Germany s promise to respect the integrity of the British Empire Hess s proposals met with no response from the British government which treated him as a prisoner of war and held him throughout World War II His quixotic action was likewise rejected by Hitler himself who accused Hess of suffering from pacifist delusions Nürnberg trials Contunico ZDF Enterprises GmbH Mainz After the war Hess was tried at the Nuremberg Nürnberg war crimes trials convicted and given a life sentence He served his sentence at Spandau prison in Berlin where from 1966 he was the sole inmate After his death in 1987 Hess was buried in Wunsiedel Bavaria and his grave later became a pilgrimage site for neo Nazis In 2011 it was decided that his body should be moved Hess s remains were subsequently cremated and his ashes were scattered in an unidentified lake Comments Share Email Print Cite Last Updated 9 8 2015 You may also be interested in Adolf Hitler Hermann Göring Josef Dietrich Heinrich Himmler Adolf Eichmann Joseph Goebbels Reinhard Heydrich Joachim von Ribbentrop Martin Bormann Albert Speer Alfred Rosenberg Walther Model Keep exploring World Wars The Second World War Fact or Fiction World War II Fact or Fiction 10 Frequently Confused Literary Terms Spies Like Us 10 Famous Names in the Espionage Game What made you want to look up Rudolf Hess To From Subject Comments Please limit to 900 characters Cancel Britannica Stories Behind The News Philosophy Religion Healing the Schism Pope Meets Patriarch Behind The News Science Gravitational Waves Observed Spotlight History Thomas Malthus s 250th Birthday See More Stories FEATURED QUIZZES Vocabulary Quiz True or False Spell It See More Quizzes About Us About Our Ads Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Inc MLA style Rudolf Hess Encyclopædia Britannica Encyclopædia Britannica Online Encyclopædia Britannica Inc 2016 Web 12 Feb 2016 http www britannica com biography Rudolf Hess APA style Rudolf Hess 2016 In Encyclopædia Britannica Retrieved from http www britannica com biography Rudolf Hess Harvard style Rudolf Hess 2016 Encyclopædia Britannica Online Retrieved 12 February 2016 from http www britannica com biography Rudolf Hess Chicago Manual of Style Encyclopædia Britannica Online s v Rudolf Hess accessed February 12 2016 http www britannica com biography Rudolf Hess While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules there may be some discrepancies Please refer to the appropriate style manual or other sources if you have any questions Update Link Click anywhere inside the article to add text or

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