From 1933 until the end of World War II in 1945, Adolf Hitler held power in Germany. The vast majority of the population supported Hitler in his expansionist desire and his ideals of the supremacy of the Aryan race. However, some Nazi officials were not in agreement with the extermination of the Jews and with Hitler’s military strategy. When in 1944 Germany’s defeat seemed imminent, a group of officers organized a plan to end his life. This plan became known as Operation Valkyrie.
Operation Valkyrie was one of the failed plots that tried to kill Hitler
The planning of the attack to end the tyrant had the participation of the most responsible of the Wehrmacht, the German armed forces. The day chosen for the murder was July 20, 1944, and the place “the lair of the wolf”, the fuhrer’s headquarters.
After the explosion of a bomb, several officers surrounding the agent were killed, but the result was not as expected and the fuhrer was unharmed with only a few bruises. The failure of Operation Valkyrie had immediate consequences: those responsible were arrested and executed.
The main conspirator in the plot was Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg, sentenced to death for high treason and shot in front of the execution squad. Moments before he died, he shouted to his tormentors “Long live our holy Germany.”
Data on the Valkyrie Operation
Sixty-four years after the failed attempt on Hitler, actor Tom Cruise played the character of Claus von Stauffenberg in the movie “Valkyrie”.
The plot to kill Hitler failed for several reasons:
- the distribution of Nazi rulers in the wolf’s den room was not adequate;
- the location of the bomb was under a wooden table that served as a protective element for Hitler;
- due to the failure to execute the plan, it was not possible for a second bomb to be activated;
- at the last moment it decided to move the officers’ meeting to another room and this circumstance considerably reduced the force of the bomb’s impact .
Hours after the attack, Hitler met with Mussolini and showed him the site of the explosion totally destroyed. At this meeting, Hitler said he was saved by the intervention of divine providence.
The failed Operation Valkyrie generated great suspicion on Hitler’s part, and in the following months he organized a purge against Wehrmacht officers.