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February 13, 2012

The museum in the Wannsee house where “The Final Solution” was planned

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 9:59 am

1916 photo of the mansion where the Wannsee Conference was held in Jan. 1942

A question, about an exhibit in the Museum at the Wannsee mansion where the “The Final Solution to the Jewish Question in Europe” was planned on January 20, 1942, was asked in a comment on my blog by a reader named “skeptic” who is skeptical about the official story of the Holocaust. “Skeptic” questions whether a telex (on display at Wannsee) that was allegedly sent by Reinhard Heydrich to the 4 Einsatzgruppen leaders in 1941, is genuine. The Wannsee Museum shows this telex in one of their displays, which I saw in October 1999.

The telex message ordered the Einsatzgruppen leaders to allow the locals on the eastern front to kill the Jews without interference during World War II, and even to encourage them to kill the Jews.  Did Reinhard Heydrich really write this telex message?  I have no way of knowing if this telex was actually sent by Reinhard Heydrich or anyone else.

I can only judge the Wannsee Museum exhibit by the information given on subjects that I know something about. Based on the my limited knowledge, I have to say that the Wannsee Museum is disingenuous. For example, an excerpt from Heinrich Himmler’s famous speech at Posen on October 4, 1943 is quoted in the museum display:

…”The Jewish people are being exterminated.” every party member says. “Of course, it’s in our program, elimination of the Jews, extermination, we’ll do it all right.” Among all those who talk like this, no one has witnessed it, no one has seen it through. Most of you will know, however, what it means to see 100 corpses lying together, or 500, or 1,000. To have stuck it out and at the same time to have remained decent – aside from a few exceptions succumbing to human weakness – that has made us tough. This is a page of glory in our history, unwritten and never to be written…

As quoted by the Wannsee Museum, Himmler’s speech is cut off in mid sentence. According to Holocaust historian Martin Gilbert, the full sentence from Himmler’s speech is as follows:

This is an unwritten and never-to-be-written page of glory in our history, for we know how difficult it would be for us if today under bombing raids and the hardships and deprivations of war – if we were still to have the Jews in every city as secret saboteurs, agitators, and inciters. If the Jews were still lodged in the body of the German nation, we would probably by now have reached the stage of 1917-18.”

The last part of the sentence is a reference to 1917-18 during World War I when the Jewish labor leaders called a strike of ammunition workers in 1917 and the Jewish Social Democrats overthrew the established government and declared a Republic in Germany in 1918. The Nazis believed that the Jews were responsible for their defeat in World War I because Jewish Social Democrats had signed the Armistice and the Treaty of Versailles. The part of the sentence, that the museum display cut out, explains why the Nazis made the decision to “transport the Jews to the east” six months after they invaded the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941.

1922 photo of dining room where Wannsee Conference was held

The museum is on the ground floor of the mansion in the Wannsee suburb of Berlin where the Conference was held. The photo above shows the dining room where the conference was held.  In the background, you can see the opening into the “Wintergarten” which is a glassed-in room overlooking a rose garden. This is where seminars on the Holocaust are now held.   (more…)