How To Tell If A Conspiracy Theory Is Daft

In 2011, Giuliano Mignini, the prosecutor responsible for making a pig’s breakfast of the Monster of Florence case and damaging, possibly beyond repair, the futures of Raffele Sollecito and Amanda Knox, defended himself against charges that he’s a conspiracy buff this way: “Why do they call it a conspiracy theory?” he asked. “What does ‘conspiracy… Continue reading How To Tell If A Conspiracy Theory Is Daft

A Reader’s Perspective on Christmas in the Third Reich

From my reader, Lilo, (b. 1939, near Munich), further evidence that any changes the Nazis made to Christmas celebrations were subtle and often ignored by the German public: I wasn’t aware that Christmas in the Third Reich was something special. Our Christmases were always the same. The “Christkind” (Christ Child) flew into the window on… Continue reading A Reader’s Perspective on Christmas in the Third Reich

Leaving Nazi Germany

In Summer of Long Knives, Rolf and Klara’s main goal–disrupted by the murder of Gretl Hofstengl–is to leave Nazi Germany. Accomplishing this involved clearing a couple of very high hurdles: the acquisition of an exit visa, and payment of Germany’s steep expatriation taxes and bank transfer fees. Getting an exit visa from Nazi Germany in the… Continue reading Leaving Nazi Germany

Talk to Me Live on Twitter Chat 11/13 @ 6pm Pacific

Our subject will be the lives of women in Nazi Germany during the 1930s, and the way those lives are reflected in Summer of Long Knives. Women’s lives ran the gamut from informers to silent witnesses to quiet dissenters to underground crusaders, and we’ll try to look at them all. As always, the hashtag to follow… Continue reading Talk to Me Live on Twitter Chat 11/13 @ 6pm Pacific

The Nazi Judiciary

The court system in Nazi Germany was an example of the meandering course of Hitler’s efforts to reshape government institutions to suit his interests. Despite the lenient treatment he had received from sympathetic Weimar-era judges during his assault and treason trials, Hitler had claimed to want to annihilate the German judiciary and replace it with… Continue reading The Nazi Judiciary

Resistance to the Nazis in the 1930s

In the first months of Nazi rule, labor unions and opposition political parties ceased to exist as government and society were subjected to the Gleichschaltung process, which was intended to reorganize all institutions of German society to better align with Nazi policy. Leaders of the German Social Democratic and Communist parties (SPD and KPD, respectively) were forced… Continue reading Resistance to the Nazis in the 1930s

Julius Streicher and Der Stürmer

When you’re a member of a political party that includes Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, Alfred Rosenberg, Heinrich Himmler, and Reinhard Heydrich, and they call you “Jew-Baiter Number One”, you know two things: you’re a uniquely terrible human being and your name in Julius Streicher. After the first world war, Julius Streicher started a right wing… Continue reading Julius Streicher and Der Stürmer