Member of Hitler assassination plot dies

2013-03-13 16:29

Berlin - Ewald Heinrich von Kleist, a former German army lieutenant who took part in a plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, has died at the age of 90, a think tank he co-founded said on Wednesday.

Von Kleist, who was arrested after the 1944 bid to remove Hitler and sent to a concentration camp, died last Friday in the southern German city of Munich, a spokesperson for the Munich Security Conference said.

Under the "20 July" plot, German army officers teamed up with members of the resistance including trade unionists to try to blow up Hitler at Rastenburg, in Eastern Prussia, now part of Poland.

Among the key plotters was Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg - played by American Hollywood actor Tom Cruise in the 2008 film "Valkyrie"*** about the failed assassination -, who had personally recruited von Kleist.

Von Kleist was 22 years old at the time and volunteered to wear a suicide vest at a meeting with Hilter.

But the plot failed and Hitler survived although he was injured in the blast.

A great German

Leading members of the plot were arrested shortly afterwards and executed.

Von Kleist was imprisoned at the Bendlerblock building in Berlin where the plot had been hatched and today is used by the defence ministry, before he was sent to Ravensbrueck concentration camp.

After the Second World War, he studied law and economics and went into publishing.

He was also a co-founder of the Munich Security Conference, which annually brings together global defence and foreign policy chiefs.

"We lost a great German, a great security policy maker," Oliver Rolofs, spokesperson for the conference said.

During a 2010 commemoration of the failed plot, von Kleist said their driving motive had been "to want to end the dreadful crimes" of the Nazi regime, which continued for nearly another 10 months after the assassination attempt.

  • Avremel Niselow - 2013-03-13 16:33


  • antonio.bandarass - 2013-03-13 16:38

    RIP hero

  • Marc57 - 2013-03-13 16:56

    von Kleist, von Stauffenberg, Erwin Rommel, von Treskow and Oster. Heroes, brave men and legends. RIP, all great men of character.

  • ian.murray.52459615 - 2013-03-13 18:18

    IF they had succeeded, would the consequences have been that rosy for Germany? Would it have led to internal civil conflict? Would the Eastern armies retreated home sooner and regrouped to more easily defend its borders. So many what ifs.

      Fidel Chavista - 2013-03-13 20:11

      More saner leadership would have adopted different military strategies, perhaps the war might have ended with Germany at a far better bargaining position, and we might be reading a different history today.

  • Leon Young - 2013-03-13 19:11

    Nothing would have stopped the red army and its generalissimo the great late red tsar the god stalin

      Avremel Niselow - 2013-03-13 19:28

      You are truly disgusting in your choice of idol. Firstly remember that Stalin and Hitler were allies in carving up Poland and Stalin only changed his allegiances when he was attacked. Secondly, he killed over 20 million people and colonized dozens of countries. Thirdly, his economic system resulted in mass starvation and slavery.

      Leon Young - 2013-03-13 19:54

      Avremel I ask you politely to go to church and ask your priest to pray for your lost soul maybe your god will forgive your sins as for me I love joseph stalin forever live the memory of the great leader father and teacher of the poor and oppressed the boss the god-man and dude please don't try to teach me stalinist history

      Avremel Niselow - 2013-03-13 20:02

      You claim to be a communist yet believe in God? Interesting contradiction. By the way I am not Christian. Clearly someone does need to teach you about Stalin as your delusion is extensive. I am curious to know why you worship someone who killed so many people.

      Avremel Niselow - 2013-03-13 20:10

      I suggest you read this as a start. Then look at a map if Asia and Eastern Europe and count the number of countries which Stalin forced under his control. The last step is to consider this, if Stalin was so wonderful and life in the USSR was so wonderful under his rule, why did he have to force people to stay under his control? There were many doctors and scientists who fled to the West, when able to, to make a better life for themselves... as janitors and in other menial labour.

      Leon Young - 2013-03-13 20:25

      Okay you a jew ask your rabbi to pray for you religious I'm not a communist I'm not I'm a stalinist but that you won't understand and I'm not going to waste my time getting into an argument with capitalist stupidity

      Avremel Niselow - 2013-03-13 20:36

      Your inability to respond to any of my points tells me exactly why you love Stalin. You simply lack the ability to open your eyes to the immense evil perpetrated by him. In your worship you do the memory of his victims a great disservice.

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