Reinhard Tristan Eugen Heydrich (born ; 7 March 1904 ; Halle an der Salle,Prussia, Germany- died ; 4 June 1942 ; Prague,Nazi-German Occupied Czechoslovakia). He was a high-ranking German Nazi SS-Gestapo officer before and during World War 2.
Heydrich was a former navy officer who became the most and feared Nazi in the SS and the Gestapo Secret Polices. His enemies in Czechoslovakia gave him various nicknames: (The Hangman, The Butcher Of Prague, The Blond Beast, Himmler's Evil Genius, Young Evil God Of Death, The Man With The Iron Heart).
He executed Jewish people and children. He ordered the Waffen-SS and the Einsatzgruppen to execute people in Prague,Czechoslovakia (Today : Czech Republic). Reinhard Heydrich wore black in the SS and the Gestapo from 1933-1939 he also wore grey from 1938-1942 and Green from 1941-1942. He also wore blue in the Luftwaffe from 1933-1941. He also ordered Adolf Eichmann to organise the Trains during the Holocaust where Eichmann sent them to Poland at Auschwitz.
Biography[change | change source]
In 1922 he joined the Reichsmarine, the German Navy in Weimar Era lead by President Friedrich Ebert and Chancellor Philipp Scheidemann (1865-1939). In 1931 he was fired by Admiral Erich Raeder after trying to be a politic and got a job with the Nazis. In 1931 he joined the Nazi Party (lead by Adolf Hitler) and the SS (lead by Heinrich Himmler) he also joined in the Gestapo and the Luftwaffe in 1933 when Adolf Hitler came to power.
In June 1934 he was involved in Night of the Long Knives (1934) to kill Ernst Röhm the head of the SA and was promoted the Head Of The Gestapo afterwards. He was also involved in the Spanish Civil War in 1936-1939 in the Luftwaffe and as well as Night Of The Broken Glass (1938) after Anschluss (1938). He was also involved in the Invasion of Poland (1939) and as well as the German Invasion Of Denmark and the German invasion of Norway in 1940 and the Battle of France and as well as Operation Barbarossa (1941) but failed when his plane was shot down by Soviet Anti-aircraft warfare. Lastly, he was sent to Prague to execute people and crush the Czech resistance in Prague.
Heydrich became German SS-Obergruppenführer (General) of the Sicherheitsdienst. He was the head of the RSHA, which included the police and the Gestapo. He was one of those responsible for the Holocaust in 1941.
Assassination[change | change source]
In 1941 Hermann Göring gave Heydrich the order to arrange the "Final Solution". Heydrich also governed Bohemia and Moravia. He was attacked in Prague on 27 May 1942 by Czech and Slovak soldiers trained by the British Special Operations Executive (SOE). They had been sent (with a small support team) by the Czechoslovak government-in-exile. Heydrich died a week later in hospital from sepsis caused by his injuries. Afterwards the Germans killed the male population of the village Lidice for helping the assassins. Ernst Kaltenbrunner replaced Heydrich after his death.
Reinhard Heydrich was depicted in fiction:
- Hangmen Also Die (1943)
- The Man With The Iron Heart (2017)
- Conspiracy (2001 Film)
- Anthropoid (2016 Film)
- Lidice (2011 Film) and
- the TV series The Man In The High Castle.
References[change | change source]
- The SD was the security and intelligence section of the Gestapo.
- Clark, Alan 1960. Barbarossa. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, p470.