Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

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Paul Lantos
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Re: Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

Post by Paul Lantos » 20 Jun 2014 04:53

Zack M wrote:Supposing Heydrich (the most evil and intelligent Nazi)...
How was he the "most evil"? More so than Hitler? Which is more evil -- the guy behind the desk who orders the deaths of millions, or the guy in the camp smashing babies against trees in front of their mothers? How was Heydrich more evil than his boss Himmler, who ended up with a lot more blood on his hands. How was he more evil than the notorious butchers of the extermination camps, like Franz, Matthes, Kuttner, Miete, Wagner, Moll, Bothmann? How did his evil exceed that of Christian Wirth who not only oversaw the gassing of more than 1.5 million people but who was actually there, torturing and killing people with his own hands?

How was he the most intelligent Nazi?? More so than the famed philosopher Heidegger who was a member of the Nazi party? Was he more intelligent than a certan Nazi with an MD and a PhD, Josef Mengele? Or another physician, Irmfried Eberl, who ran the first phase of Treblinka when it turned into probably the most ghastly scene in the entire Third Reich? Was he more intelligent than Otto Ohlendorf, a lawyer and economist, who shot 90,000 people as the leader of Einsatzgruppe D?

Not much would have been different if Heydrich had lived. Why not? Because after his death Hitler and Himmler decided to greatly ramp up the killings, and the death toll skyrocketed after Heydrich died. The intent to totally exterminate the Jews of Europe (before the war ended) developed AFTER Heydrich's death. Treblinka opened after he died -- around 360,000 Jews died there in less than 2 months after Heydrich's death. Sobibor, Belzec, and Birkenau both expanded. Increased efforts were made to import Jews from other countries. The Einsatzgruppe launched their second wave of exterminations in the USSR.

So the killings reached their greatest extreme after Heydrich had died. I suppose they could have just dispensed with all labor selection and EVERY Jew could have died. But in the end, the fact that Hitler's war was entirely doomed determined the course of actions -- after 1942 the Reich depended more and more on slave labor mobilization because of war attrition, and Heydrich wouldn't have done any better than his superiors (Himmler, Hitler), subordinates (Eichmann and his staff), and colleagues in other depts (like von Ribbentrop) at importing Jews from reluctant countries like France, Denmark, Bulgaria, and Italy.

I would add that Heydrich was in charge of the RSHA, which controlled police actions to gather and deport Jews, and the on site killing of Jews in the USSR. But Heydrich was NOT in charge of 1) the Aktion Reinhard camps in which their leader (Globocnik) was directly subordinated to Himmler, 2) the Totenkopfverband (the staff in the camps, including the extermination sites), or 3) the WVHA (the SS economic department which notably ran Auschwitz-Birkenau and Majdanek).

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Re: Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

Post by Nautilus » 23 Aug 2018 22:11

Side note: Actually Josef Mengele, despite his doctoral titles, was not the brightest of the bunch. Most of his fellow physicians and researchers from the Reich threw away or burned his notes and letters, since they were fully convinced he was nuts and all the ghastly things he had done were useless.

1. The intent to totally exterminate the Jews of Europe (before the war ended) developed AFTER Heydrich's death, but it did not depend on one man, regardless how able he was. The state organizations tasked with such dirty job were already in place, the Chairman of RSHA just gave the green light.

2. The troubled times from the 1920s and 1930s floated upwards a lot of people of dim background, with stained reputations. People here on the Forum who worked in police, army, local administration know how it happens: some nutcase did some nasty things, he had too many connections, gave some bribes, destroyed some evidence, there was little legal reason to bring him to court, so they pushed the bastard in some insignificant desk job... until the Reich leadership calls him to a disgusting job. People knew what lovely figures were Christian Wirth, Oskar Dirlewanger or (later in the 1930s) Kurt Franz. They did no appear out of thin air when Aktion T4 started, they were handpicked. By senior political figures who sought to keep their own hands clean.

3. Heydrich not only could have lived, it's a wonder he died at all.

The assassination had been a botched job. Guns malfunctioned (after all, they were Sten :-) ), the grenade exploded in the wrong place and too few fragments hit. What drove Heydrich to death were his own actions: he could not know how many assassins were, if they were hidden or not, how many guns or other weapons were trained on himself. The logical course of action when you don't know what charges at you and you're fully visible in the open is to floor the throttle and run to safety, as a certain General Roméo Dallaire said.

Yet what did Heydrich do? Stopped the car and started a gunfight, for no reason? Split himself from his driver Klein and each of them chased a different opponent? What if there were 20 assassins instead of 2? Ran away from the car, with bleeding wounds in the ribcage?

The veteran of air combat, who knew how a split second may bring death, did an extraordinary stupid act and paid with his life for it.

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T. A. Gardner
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Re: Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

Post by T. A. Gardner » 24 Aug 2018 02:44

I think people in areas controlled by the US, Britain, and possibly France (the French were a bit more vindictive) would likely turn against a partisan effort. On the other hand, the Soviets would have their hands full, yet again. Germans in areas occupied by Russians would likely have no problems and even support such a movement. I can't see Germans in the West being enticed into resisting an occupation that for the most part is really turning things around for them.

I could also see the Soviets blaming the West for their problem in this respect calling the movement backed by the evil Capitalists.

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Re: Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

Post by Nautilus » 24 Aug 2018 10:53

Partisanship could resist for a long time if and only if it got supplied from outside.

Weapon airdrops, smuggled money, foodstuffs, medicines, plus some support from the ordinary population. Even something as small as knowing where the partisans are and not denouncing it.

If the Reich collapsed, which power from the outside was going to supply a partisan movement?

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Heydrich-led partisan campaign against Allied occupiers?

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 01 Sep 2018 18:07

Some sort of post war resistance, however badly it fails, give the modern neo nazis/facists myth material they don't now have. One of the reasons for the relatively slow revival of the neo fascists in Germany was the extremely weak resistance as Germany collapsed in 1945. Even the hardcore party faithful were cowed. The SS leaders were among the first to seek communication with Allied commanders to surrender, days before Donetizs government did.

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