68

Short Answer Despite the claims of some sites, I can find no evidence that Hitler himself said 'Heil Hitler', and it would make no sense for him to do so as the words were more than a greeting: they indicated obedience to the leader (Hitler) and were an oath of allegiance (to Hitler). This was made clear by a senior Nazi official, Gregor Strasser, as early ...


61

From the "contemporary German perspective", the answer is doubtless "Alaric", Juan Pujol García, known to the British as "Garbo". He was paid a total of US$340,000 and awarded the Iron Cross, second class, in July 1944 for his contributions to the war effort. He operated a network that grew to 27 sub-agents in all parts of the UK, communicating via post to ...


53

No country is impossible to invade. Andorra could invade the USA. The question you should have asked was "Was Switzerland Impossible to Conquer during World War II?". The answer is no country is impossible to conquer. But there is great variation in the probability that a specific country will actually conquer another specific country if it tries to ...


38

Could an SS officer get from Auschwitz to Berlin by train in July/August/September 1944? Yes. Per the many comments to your question they'd repair the rails as they'd get destroyed. Trains might get delayed, but they would arrive. And per John Dallman's answer the rail system only broke down in early 1945 when allies began to attack it systematically. ...


38

Ok, since I think I finally got your real question (as I see it): I'm simply asking if the defense of Switzerland during WW2 was overrated. Many people claim that the country was impossible to occupy, I just want to know if this is not clearly exaggerated. The emphasis is what I interpret as your "real" question (since there is a lot of confusion here) ...


37

Three steps to observe: Hitler was given the chancellory Election in 1933 Reichstag fire & Enabling decree First the really unwanted elements were beaten up, imprisoned or just killed. Then a lot of the right-wingers saw their wishes and chances and did not switch sides, to the contrary, they just switched the membership card. Then, after eliminating ...


28

There is a confusion of terminology at work, here. First of all, you have to understand what the terms involved were not: They weren't the "loaded" terms we recognize them as from today's point of view. Fascists were followers of the Partito Nazionale Fascista. That is where the term originated, and that was all it originally meant. Nazis were followers of ...


25

What factors were Hitler's / Germany's motivations for WW2? Revanchism, stealing raw materials, and racial hatreds. The Swiss are largely German-speaking / Germanic, so there's no "racial superiority" factor to promote invasion and de facto depopulation/extermination and colonization. They don't have a excessive amount of arable land for "true German" ...


24

The boundaries of the occupation zones had been agreed at the Yalta Conference between Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin, but were tweaked subsequently. A basic plan for the zones had been made during 1944, by the European Advisory Commission, but it was modified at Yalta. The Yalta conference presumably announced that there would be occupation zones, but I ...


23

The official, factual side As unsatisfactory as that might sound @JMS is rightly focussing on first Göring and then Dönitz/Goebbels, although the later declined to survive so that Schwerin von Krosigk was stepped up. But that is really it, as this is most typical of a dictatorship that is based on the love of the people for that very person. This is ...


23

The Soviets were caught by surprise and suffered massive casualties as a result. See this Wikipedia article. Lots of aircraft were destroyed on the ground, not the air. The first attacks began at 03:00 on 22 June. The Soviets had been caught by surprise, their aircraft bunched together in neat rows which were vulnerable. The results were devastating ... ...


21

The Germans were certain they could. For instance, their 1940 plans for Operation Tannenbaum estimated that a force of 300,000 to 500,000 men would have been sufficient. Swiss military leadership also thought that an invasion would have been successful: Their revised military plan for the event of an invasion, the Réduit national, called for a delaying ...


16

This article shows maps of the German census and election results of 1932, showing what appears to be a clear link between Protestanism and Nazism. BUT, this only reflects the 1932 elections. These were held during a time when the Vatican forbade Catholics from support fascism and naziism. By the time of the November 1933 elections that put the NDSAP in ...


16

The Imperial War Museum, in association with the publisher J.B. Hayward, has published a series of volumes listing all British & Commonwealth POWs held in Germany and German Occupied Territories. volume 1: Prisoners of War. The British army 1939 --1945 volume 2: Prisoners of war naval and air forces of Great Britain and the empire 1939-1945 volume 3: ...


15

Short answer: Was there ever any particular desire to use a specific part of Nazi experiments on humans? Yes. A concrete example would be the Dachau Hypothermia Experiments How was it resolved? It isn't resolved. It remains a matter of controversy. Ethical Issues In the 1984 Hastings Center Report, Should the Nazi research data be cited?, ...


15

In August/September 1944, the German rail system was working reasonably well. It was heavily loaded, and sometimes damaged by bombing. However, the Western allies weren't doing much bombing east of Berlin, so there would not have been much interference with routes to Auschwitz. Starting in October, the Western allies began attacking the rail system ...


15

Yes, at least one member of the Nazi party is known to have been horrified by the actions of the Japanese Imperial Army. It depends on what you understand by the (plural) term the Nazis I would, in this historical context, understand this as the Government or leadership of Germany or Japan both of which, together with Italy, were allies with ...


15

Magnus Hirschfeld, a researcher on sexuality and early advocates for gay rights amassed a huge body of research on homosexuality and transsexuality. In '33, he was heading and institute at the Charité University in Berlin. The Archive of his Institute was burned completely, a huge body of research was lost. This did not happen "just" because he was jewish, ...


14

Your ring looks just like the ring a google search shows as Biker Sterling Silver Jewelry for Men. Note the symbol displayed on the ring is not strictly a Nazi symbol, but the Iron Cross or perhaps a Cross Pattee, which predate the Nazi regime. An article discussing the Iron Cross's association with biker culture can be read here. Below you can compare to ...


13

After the UK withdrawal, are there other Allied bases left from those that were originally meant to control the situation in Germany? Yes. There are a number of bases operated by the United States in Germany, and many of these were established in the aftermath of the Second World War, for example Lucius D. Clay Kaserne at Wiesbaden. Wikipedia has a list ...


12

Reichsbahn operated reasonably well practically until the end of the war Reasons for this are easy to understand - unlike oil, Germany had ample supply of coal (Ruhr and Saar region, Kattowitz-Katowice in Poland etc ...). Direct threat for railway system came only from various partisan groups and from air attacks. Partisans were a significant threat for ...


12

The German population before WW2 was roughly half Catholic half Protestant. That's not strictly true. According to Population by Religious Denomination (1910-1939) from the GHDI, 62.7% of 1933's population identified as protestant, while 32.5% identified as catholic; the Protestants outnumbered the Catholics almost 2:1. Before and during WW2, was there ...


11

There is apparently a serious misconception present in the question, namely that from 1919–1935 there were a great number of Jews enlisted in the German army. With two new laws of the programme "Wiedererlangung der Wehrhoheit", "Gesetz zur Wiedereinführung der Wehrpflicht" and "Reichsbürgergesetz" in 1935, the Reichswehr was transformed into the Wehrmacht ...


11

The Nuremberg Trials Project has so far only provided access to 5 out of the 12 Nuremberg Military Tribunals. From the Introduction page on their website: The Nuremberg Trials Project currently provides access to the document record for five and transcripts for four of the United States Nuremberg Military Tribunals: NMT 1 (Medical Case: U.S.A. v. Karl ...


11

For some perspective: In 1936, which is five years after the Japanese invasion of Manchuria, the IOC gave the 1940 summer olympics to Tokyo. While there were talks of boycot, and while the international pressure certainly played a part, it was Japan giving the rights to the 1940 summer olympics back to the IOC in 1938, which is one year after the outbreak ...


11

At the beginning of Fall Blau the Caucasus was not very well defended, as the rapid advance might show. The army was approaching and the Luftwaffe had a large bomber and fighter force on intact forward airfields. The biggest flaw in all of this is that the speculation "take Baku – get oil" was not even an option at the time. As the Germans knew in the ...


11

No, since the greeting is being made to him or referencing him as the leader he would not greet or reference himself Nazi salute - Description By autumn 1923, some members of the Nazi Party were using the rigid, outstretched right arm salute to greet Hitler, who responded by raising his own right hand crooked back at the elbow, palm opened upwards, in ...


10

The requirement of unconditional surrender was decided by the Western Allies in January 1943 in Casablanca. Even earlier all Allies promised not to conclude a separate peace. There was no arrangement and no accepted plan of what to do with Germany before the beginning of 1944. In the early 1944, when it became clear that Germany will be defeated soon, ...


10

tl;dr: Initiative. This is the same reason Stalin kept ordering counterattacks in 1941 and 1942 - because it is the only way to stop (or at least slow down) an advancing overwhelming force, because in a (counter)offensive you select the time and place of the battle and can (try to) do it to your advantage. I understand that this sounds counterintuitive, ...


10

There were many practical reasons why Switzerland was not occupied of which none of the first answer of @AmorphouBob apply Some of these reasons are: militarily Switzerland was considered a 'thorny' problem, as expressed in the question and the Swiss strategy there was no strategic advantage (Switzerland was surrounded by the Axis powers) an economic ...


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