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Lecture 8

Political Science 2103A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Claus Von Stauffenberg, 20 July Plot, Ludwig Beck


Department
Political Science
Course Code
Political Science 2103A/B
Professor
Jun Fang
Lecture
8

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LECTURE – THE ATTEMPTED ASSASSINATION OF ADOLF HITLER
BACKGROUND
oRise to power – Chancellor in 1933
o1934 – Office of President abolished, and Hitler named Fuhrer of Germany
established an oath to the Fuhrer for loyalty
head of state and government
oRearmament and alliances – Russia, built up Nazi military
Was required by the Treaty of Versailles to have a military no bigger than 100k
men, but ignored this clause and built up the military to 600k+ men
oGerman territorial expansion;
1938 – “Unification” with Austria; Munich agreement and Sudetenland to
Germany
1939 – Invasion of Poland – Start of the Second World War
1940 – Invasion of Denmark, Norway, France, Luxembourg, Holland, Belgium,
Battle of Britain
1941 – Operation Barbarossa and the Invasion of Poland
Battle of Stalingrad (August 1942 – February 1943) – turning point in the
war – USSR won
Soviet offenses – eastern front
Normandy Landings – June 6th, 1944 – Western front – D-Day
The Holocaust
Jewish genocide by Nazi regime, millions killed
Numerous assassination attempts on the Life of Hitler since he 1930s
“42 Ways to Kill Hitler”
THE JULY 20 PLOT
oJuly 20th, 1944
oLudwig Beck (1880-1944)
“provisional Head of state” – if the assassination was successful
Chief of Staff of Germany Army (1935-8)
Retired, still held respectable seniority over position
Previously plotted abortive assassinations prior to 1944
Assassination foiled – killed himself – shot himself twice
oClaus von Stauffenberg
Youngest member of the conspirators
Colonel
Chief of Staff of Home/Reserve/Replacement Army
Very important – needed the support of the protection of the homeland
Access to Hitler
Accompany the commander-in-chief to see Hitler
Only made one bomb, used half of the explosives needed to make the bomb
effective enough – was in a hurry
oFriedrich Olbericht (1888-1944)
Chief of the General Army Office
Chief of the Armed Forces Replacement Office
Dealt with the reserve army
Assassination foiled – executed
oHenning von Tresckow
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