Under his watch, Universal produced some of history's most iconic monster movies, including Dracula, The Mummy, and Frankenstein. But on the cusp of World War II, nothing felt as frightening as the reality Laemmle was watching unfold. Given a ticket for the S. Neckar for his 17th birthday by his father, Laemmle made the trip across the Atlantic, leaving behind his family and hometown of Laupheim, a village in Wurttemberg, Germany so small that it could have fit on the future Universal Pictures studio lot.
One man in particular fought back from within the Nazi Party, reporting its atrocities and plotting to bring them down from the inside. That man was Edmund Glaise-Horstenau, a general within the Austrian military and respected Nazi leader.
In fact, he was born into a military family — his father was an officer in the Austrian military, and as a young man, Glaise-Horstenau quickly followed a similar path. He took classes at the University of Vienna, focusing his studies on history.
In he became the head of the press department of the Supreme Command of the Armed Forces. A decade later inGlaise-Horstenau moved into a new position as the director of the Austrian War Archives. He stayed at this job untilmaking even greater strides throughout his career and earning the rank of colonel at the Austrian Heeresnachrichtenamt in With such accomplishments and years of experience within the army, it came as no surprise that Glaise-Horstenau moved quickly up the ranks of another organization: As the Austrian Nazi Party gained both popularity and prominence throughout the s, Glaise-Horstenau aligned himself with the growing political group.
As a member, he stuck with the party throughout the decade, ultimately earning a very high position in the Austrian Nazi hierarchy — Glaise-Horstenau stood as second in command behind Arthur Seyss-Inquart, the party head.
He became a Nazi of great importance and was even appointed a member of the Staatsrat of the Federal State of Austria. Glaise-Horstenau earned this position because the Austrian Nazi Party hoped he would be able to bring them into better relations with the German Nazi Party.
Schuschnigg agreed to the terms, and the Austrian Nazi Party became one with the Germans. This marked the end of any division in operations or relationships between the two parties; going forward, the Austrian army became part of the German military, and the nation itself was absorbed into Nazi Germany.
Facing Unimaginable Horrors With the German-Austrian relationship growing stronger, Glaise-Horstenau and the rest of his compatriots continued to work to bring the Nazi Party to prominence and power.
Glaise-Horstenau proved even more important to the part as the s began, earning yet another powerful position as the Plenipotentiary General for the Independent State of Croatia in April Yet this position was to be his very last accomplishment as a proud Nazi.
In his role as the Plenipotentiary General, Glaise-Horstenau was responsible for overseeing both activities in Croatia and reporting on both Nazi military operations and civilian life. Here, Glaise-Horstenau saw firsthand just what occurred under Nazi rule — and he witnessed the horrors that took place in concentration camps throughout the German regime.
When Glaise-Horstenau began his work in Croatia, he was immediately surprised to discover the conditions that existed.
He stared upon mutilated and brutalized corpses and listened to stories of how those intended for execution would choose to commit suicide rather than endure their fate. After learning that such camps existed, he insisted that he experience one firsthand. So, the Croatian leadership took Glaise-Horstenau to a typical internment camp.
Instead, they took him to a prepared, cleaned-up camp; still, Glaise-Horstenau was horrified with what he witnessed. As he later explained in his autobiography: Few men, many women, and children, without sufficient clothing, sleeping on stone at night, pining away, wailing and crying.
A camp commandant — in spite of the later, favorable judgment of the Poglavnik — a rogue; I ignored him but instead told my Ustase guide: Tossed atop piles of straw were approximately 50 children, every one of them naked. Once again, the OKW did nothing, leaving Glaise-Horstenau with a problem he desperately wished to solve.
Not one response followed his many reports. Tension grew between the men, and Glaise-Horstenau became even more unhappy in his new position. A Nazi Gone Rogue Of course, as an esteemed member of the Nazi Party entrusted with a prominent position, it would seem that Glaise-Horstenau could enact the changes he so desperately needed in Croatia.
Together, the two worked within the Nazi Party to get Glaise-Horstenau removed from office — and the plan worked perfectly. Instead, he remained closely tied to both the nation and its political party. It was in this uneventful, action-free job that Glaise-Horstenau finished the final days of his military career.
On that day, the U. Army arrived and took Glaise-Horstenau captive. An almost lifelong supporter of Nazi Germany, he was terrified that the U. Army would send him to Yugoslavia — and even more worried that he would be tortured and killed there.
Within two months of his capture by the Allied forces, Glaise-Horstenau took his fate into his own hands and committed suicide on July 20,while held captive at Langwasser military camp.
It was soon discovered that during the last years of his life he began writing an autobiography — and those writings held detailed and extensive recollections of exactly what happened in the years before Austria fell to German control, as well as the atrocities that occurred during his years in Croatia.
From the detailed reports he sent the OKW in the first years of his role as Plenipotentiary General to the reflections and images he shared in the pages of his unpublished autobiography, Edmund Glaise-Horstenau allowed the world beyond Nazi Germany and its territories to experience what he did.This Hollywood Titan Foresaw the Horrors of Nazi Germany who needed them to get out of Nazi Germany.
World War II.
But before September , Nazi Germany’s acts of terrorism and. Sep 23, · Japanese World War II veterans recall horrors of Unit - Duration: Secret letters written in urine reveal horrors of Nazi death camp 10 Things You Didn't Know About Nazi Germany.
A Military Life Before the War.
Edmund Glaise-Horstenau didn’t spend much of his life as a civilian before World War II began. In fact, he was born into a military family – his father was an officer in the Austrian military, and as a young man, Glaise-Horstenau quickly followed a similar path.
May 30, · Watch video · After the start of World War II, Adolf Hitler (), the chancellor of Germany from to , implemented a policy that came . BERLIN, Germany — World War II ended 70 years ago, and there's no better place in Europe to view remnants of that war than here in Berlin, the birthplace of Hitlerism, Nazism and Fascism.
BERLIN, Germany — World War II ended 70 years ago, and there's no better place in Europe to view remnants of that war than here in Berlin, the birthplace of Hitlerism, Nazism and Fascism.