Sunday, November 02, 2008

Hitler Led Kristallnacht 


Hitler Led Kristallnacht

by Yated Ne'eman Staff
1 Cheshvan 5769 - October 31, 2008

A German historian researching the diaries of Josef Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister, has revealed that Hitler himself led the Kristallnacht pogrom in Munich on November 9, 1938 as head of a Nazi group that razed Ohel Yaakov, the central synagogue of Munich, capital of Bavaria. Angela Hermann, a researcher at the Institute for Contemporary History in Munich, managed to decode a mysterious passage that has stumped scholars ever since this section of Goebbels diaries was retrieved from Moscow in 1992.

"We have real evidence now that Hitler pulled the strings, that he personally directed Kristallnacht," she said.

In his diary entry for November 9, the Nazi propaganda minister recounts a rally at the Munich Town Hall in which Hitler told him the police should let people vent their anger over the vom Rath assassination. "Hitler's Stosstrupp [Storm Troopers company] goes out immediately to clean up Munich...and a synagogue is smashed," he wrote.

This had historians puzzled, as there was no force known as ''Hitler's Stosstrupp'' in 1938, but Dr. Hermann found letters and documents showing that the term referred to the veterans of Hitler's failed attempt to seize power in 1923, known as the Beer Hall Putsch. She uncovered invitations to Hitler's former comrades to attend a demonstration held on November 9th — the same 39 people who later razed the beis knesses under his command.

In a parallel development Israeli reporter and researcher Yaron Svoray recently found a massive dump north of Berlin that he claims was used as a dumpsite for Jewish property stolen and destroyed by the Nazis. Citing reliable sources he says most of the findings at the site arrived there following the looting of botei knesses and Jewish stores during Kristallnacht. Among the items found were mezuzas, wine bottles stamped with a Star of David and parts of windows and engraved chairs from a shul. Now the Holocaust Remembrance Museum at Kibbutz Lochamei HaGeta'ot is planning to send a youth delegation to the site to continue the digging.

Less than two weeks away is the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht, which marked a new low point in the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany. The massive countrywide pogrom broke out after a Jewish teenager named Herschel Grynszpan walked into the German embassy in Paris and shot dead diplomat Ernst vom Rath. By November 10th at least 92 Jews had been killed, over 200 botei knesses had been desecrated and thousands of Jewish businesses across the country had been looted."

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