Nazi Prosecution of the Holocaust

Wannsee Conference Participants

Gerhard Klopfer

Gerhard Klopfer, attendee at the Wannsee Conference

The following individuals participated in the Wannsee Conference (Wannsee-Konferenz, Wannseekonferenz), held in the Berlin suburb of Wannsee on January 20, 1942, to achieve bureaucratic unanimity concerning the Final Solution of the Jewish Question (Endlösung, Endlösung der Judenfrage), a euphemism for the destruction of the Jews in Europe.

SS-Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich, Chief of the RSHA (Reichssicherheitshauptamt/ Reich Main Security Office) and Deputy Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia; ambushed in Prague on May 27, 1942 and died of his wounds on June 4, 1942.

State Secretary Roland Freisler, Reich Ministry of Justice; killed in an air-raid in Berlin on February 3, 1945.

SS-Sturmbannführer Rudolf Lange, Commander of the Sicherheitspolizei (Security Police; SiPo) and the SD for the General-District Latvia, Deputy of the Commander of the SiPo and the SD for the Reichskommissariat Ostland, and Head of Einsatzkommando 2; killed in action (or suicide) at Posen/Poznań, Poland on February 23, 1945.

State Secretary and Deputy Reich Minister Alfred Meyer, Reich Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories; committed suicide on April 11, 1945 near Hessisch Oldendorf.

SS-Gruppenführer Heinrich Müller, Chief of Amt IV (Gestapo) in the Reich Main Security Office; last seen in Berlin on April 30, 1945 – fate unknown.

Undersecretary of State Martin Luther, Reich Foreign Ministry; finished the war in a concentration camp after falling out with Foreign Minister Ribbentrop; died in Berlin of heart failure in May 1945.

SS-Oberführer Karl Eberhard Schöngarth, Commander of the SiPo (Security Police) and the SD (Security Service) in the General Government; hanged for war crimes (killing British prisoners of war) at Hameln Prison on May 16, 1946 (executioner – Albert Pierrepoint.)

Ministerial Director Friedrich Wilhelm Kritzinger, Permanent Secretary at the Reich Chancellery (representing Dr. Hans Lammers); acquitted of war crimes; died at Nürnberg on April 25, 1947.

State Secretary Josef Bühler, General Government (representing Governor-General Dr. Hans Frank); tried in Poland for war crimes and executed in Kraków, Poland on August 22, 1948.

State Secretary Erich Neumann, Office of the Plenipotentiary for the Four Year Plan; briefly imprisoned; died at Garmisch-Partenkirchen on March 23, 1951.

State Secretary Wilhelm Stuckart, Reich Interior Ministry; imprisoned for four years before being released for lack of evidence in 1949; killed in a car accident near Hanover on November 15, 1953.

SS-Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann, Head of Referat IV B4 of the Gestapo; hanged at Ramla Prison in Israel on June 1, 1962.

Ministerial Director Georg Leibbrandt, Reich Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories; charged with war crimes but the case against him was dismissed in 1950; died in Bonn on June 16, 1982.

SS-Gruppenführer Otto Hofmann, Head of the SS Race and Settlement Main Office (RuSHA); sentenced to 25 years in prison for war crimes, but was pardoned in 1954; died in Bad Mergentheim on December 31, 1982.

Ministerial Director Gerhard Klopfer, Permanent Secretary of the Nazi Party Chancellery (representing Martin Bormann); charged with war crimes but released for lack of evidence; died on January 29, 1987.

 

Wannsee Conference Participants2016-03-02T21:18:07-06:00

SS-Gruppenführer Odilo Globocnik’s Villa in Lublin

Lublin, Poland – SS-Gruppenführer Odilo Globocnik’s Villa

SS leaders lived like kings in the “Wild East.” Globocnik was in charge of “Operation Reinhard.” Rumors exist to this day that he skimmed valuables for himself before he sent confiscated goods to Berlin. He committed suicide in May 1945, just after capture by the British.

SS-Gruppenführer Odilo Globocnik’s Villa in Lublin2012-10-15T20:11:40-06:00

The “Final Solution” in Lublin, Poland – “Operation Reinhard” Headquarters

The “Final Solution” in Lublin, Poland – “Operation Reinhard” Headquarters

Lublin was a large center for the Nazi killing machine and in many ways remains similar in architecture to World War II.  This photo was taken in 2001.  In a very obscure area of the city is the remnants of the Lublin Airfield Camp used “Operation Reinhard.”  There is a small building there that is used as a workshop today.  During the operation, SS men used it to melt the gold out of teeth taken from the dead victims and formed the gold into small ingots to ship to Berlin.  It was widely rumored that not all valuables made it to the German capital.  An old building nearby served as the SS officers’cassino in 1942-1943.

The “Final Solution” in Lublin, Poland – “Operation Reinhard” Headquarters2016-03-02T21:24:57-06:00

Auschwitz Barbed Wire

Auschwitz Barbed Wire

This is actually the Birkenau Camp, also known as Auschwitz II.  A visit to this location gives the visitor a very strong feeling of going back in time.  The setting is so stark that even an amateur photographer can take stunning photographs.

Auschwitz Barbed Wire2012-10-15T20:39:57-06:00

Auschwitz Front Gate

Auschwitz Front Gate

This is the infamous “Arbeit Macht Frei” (Work Brings Freedom) entrance to the original Auschwitz camp.

Auschwitz Front Gate2012-10-15T20:41:10-06:00
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