Photo from Topography of Terros in Berlin
60 YEARS AGO
Today Germany is honoring those Germans who actively opposed Nazi tyranny. 60 years ago today the most famous plot to kill Adolf Hitler with a briefcase bomb was attempted by Col. Claus Graf Schenk von Stauffenberg & some of his officers. Stauffenberg placed the bomb in a conference room with Hitler, but when the Nazi leader escaped the blast, the aristocrat and his cohorts were arrested and executed. This plot is just one example of anti-Nazi resistance by Germans. Stauffenberg co-conspirators Maj. Gen. Henning von Tresckow and Maj. Gen. Hans Oster were already plotting as early as 1934 to bring Hitler down. In Munich, students formed The White Rose movement, distributing pamphlets urging "passive resistance" starting in 1942. Helmuth James von Moltke's Kreisau Circle started working in secret to end the dictatorship in 1940. Like Stauffenberg, von Tresckow, Oster, von Moltke and the principals of The White Rose were either executed by the Nazis or committed suicide. German President Horst Koehler hailed the July 20 plotters as "patriots" as "they did what they did for Germany, for the self-respect of our country and for a better future."