Photographic book

Germany in the 40s


Nurnberg
Nurnberg

Although many people in the countries occupied by Germany collaborated with Germany’s extermination of Jews and others, there was also substantial resistance. Before invasion, Bulgaria, Hungary, Finland, and Italy refused to deport Jews to Germany. Widespread partisan resistance also existed in the occupied territories. Jews resisted with armed uprisings in Tarnow, Radom, Bedzin, and Białystok, as well as in the camp at Sobibór. For three weeks in 1943, the 65,000 Jews remaining in the Warsaw ghetto battled German police attempting a final roundup of Jews.

Within Germany, opposition to Hitler came from two different groups. The first comprised those individuals who felt a moral or philosophical repugnance to the Nazi state and thus defied it openly or passively. Many members of the German Evangelical Church formed a splinter institution known as the Confessing Church that openly opposed Nazi racism and brutality.

Its leaders were imprisoned, exiled, or—as in the case of theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer—executed. A number of Catholic clerics and lay people also resisted without official church support. Some students and teachers at the University of Munich formed an underground resistance movement (“The White Rose”) but were eventually apprehended and executed in April 1943. Socialists and Communists who had escaped Nazi roundups also fought the fascist government, although with negligible results.

The second type of German resistance to Hitler came from highly placed individuals who believed that Hitler’s leadership and methods had grown erratic and thus threatened Germany. This group, which included civil servants, military staff officers of various ranks, and members of the East Prussian aristocracy, engaged in a conspiracy to remove him. very late—and unsuccessful—attempt to kill Hitler with a bomb on July 20, 1944, led to a bloodthirsty purge and a series of especially brutal public executions. "Germany" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia

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