Hitler`s Wolfsschanze

“Wolfsshanze”/ “Wolf`s hole” was the place from where Hitler sent to death millions of people. Why “Wolf`s hole”? Probably because Hitler`s adolescence nick name was Wolf. Here we can see a map of this place:

map

“Ieeja” (left corner) is entrance. In building No. 1 was SS officers`barracks, now a crappy hotel. No. 2 is Hitler`s bunker. No. 6 is barrack, where Hitler was tried to kill by Schtaufenberg. Place seems quite big – once it was 250 ha big plus 800 ha of surrounding forests with more than 2000 inhabitants.

hitler`s bunker

Hitler`s bunker. Damaged, but some walls still standing. Walls (5 m) were too thick for bombs to break them…Rooms were small, equipment like in barrack. In his rooms Hitler had big wooden box for his German Shepard dog Blondie. Hitler celebrated here Christmas and his birthdays and met with allied.

place of attack to Hitler

Monument in place where unsuccessful Hitler`s assassination happened.

“Wolf`s hole” now is part of Poland and since 1958 it`s opened for tourists. WH building started in October 1940 and was finished in June 1941, but last time Hitler was there in November 1944.  In total Hitler spent there 850 days and liked the place although his fellows thought about this place as something between monastery and concentration camp. In 1945 place was overtaken by Soviet army after German army blow up all buildings as much as they could.

[Photos and information from magazine “Majas viesis”]

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Run into Peter the Great

Almost true :) Visited Cesis castle museum and found this:

peter the great I

Next to him is his law post (laws written between 1700 and 1720, too bad I don`t remember exact year).

When in St. Peterborough tourists can by such order:

peter the great II

“Peter I – founder of the city. St. Peterborough 1703” (translated from Russian)

Relatives brought this to me last summer. And of course it`s not the only thing one can by there with Peter the Great on it.

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Why to be interested in historical personalities?

I have always liked history. When younger my favourite subjects were ancient states: Egypt, Greece, Roman Empire. In secondary school I wrote some essays on subject ” World War II in my country”. But as I grew older I got more and more interested in people: their life, their thoughts, culture and anthropology. Reading books and articles, watching movies and documentaries about historical personalities is a way how to deal with my interests.

Reading about Mussolini, Hitler and Stalin helped me to understand my boss – kind of dictator – better. Reading about Peter the Great showed me different Europe and way how to do impossible things possible, how to do business. It helps understand both past and today, and even maybe future. I`m just at the beginning of my way through this wide subject. I`m not sure for how long I`ll continue `cause my interests might change with a time.

For now I want to hear your thoughts, dear reader, on this subject. Maybe you have historical personality you got inspired from? And I`m not talking only about politicians or warlords.

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Mao: The Unknown Story

 

I haven`t got this book yet, but it seems worth buying. Amazon.com review tells the following:

Chang and Halliday are determined to shatter the “myth” of Mao, and they succeed with the force, not just of moral outrage, but of facts. The result is a book, more indictment than portrait, that paints Mao as a brutal totalitarian, a thug, who unleashed Stalin-like purges of millions with relish and without compunction, all for his personal gain.

Amazon.com also tells 5 things readers will learn from this book:

1. Mao became a Communist at the age of 27 for purely pragmatic reasons: a job and income from the Russians.

2. Far from organizing the Long March in 1934, Mao was nearly left behind by his colleagues who could not stand him and had tried to oust him several times. The aim of the March was to link up with Russia to get arms. The Reds survived the March because Chiang Kai-shek let them, in a secret horse-trade for his son and heir, whom Stalin was holding hostage in Russia.

3. Mao grew opium on a large scale.

4. After he conquered China, Mao’s over-riding goal was to become a superpower and dominate the world: “Control the Earth,” as he put it.

5. Mao caused the greatest famine in history by exporting food to Russia to buy nuclear and arms industries: 38 million people were starved and slave-driven to death in 1958-61. Mao knew exactly what was happening, saying: “half of China may well have to die.”

I got a little snap shot at bookstore and found out that:

  • Mao was generous in every subject that he liked. He was gourmet and food for him was brought from all over the country. One special fish had to be brought alive for 1000 km.
  • Mao didn`t like to take a shower or bath so for 25 years his servants rubbed him down every day with hot towel.
  • Mao had double standards in life and most disastrous effect they had on private intimate life.

Strange and unpleasant fellow he seems.

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H-list

According to conversation in Victoria`s cross? about History blogs and history bloggers` community, where I suggested doing similar thing as travel bloggers do, here are the rules and my H-list. First H-list ever and hope to go round the blogosphere and grow bigger and bigger. 

H-list contains your favourite history blogs. It`s a way of using links to boost smaller blogs and get more readers and get to know fellow bloggers. Instructions:

  • write a post.
  • copy/paste the link list from the post you`ve discovered the H-list into it.
  • make sure the links are active and correct.
  • if your blog is on the list, remove it, it`s not a self-promotion post.
  • add your favourite history blogs on the list.
  • add the url of the blog where you`ve discovered the H-list as well.
  • publish the post
  • people will notice the list and continue it.

So here is my H-list

  1. Breathing history
  2. Victoria`s cross?
  3. Great War Fiction
  4. Investigations of a dog
  5. Airminded
  6. Stories: take one/leave one
  7. Strange maps
  8. A historian`s craft
  9. You`re history!
  10. Early modern notes
  11. Found History
  12. How it really was
  13. Early Modern Rambler

Go on!

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How Hitler got his famous moustache?

Now the answer is clear. Article in The Sunday Telegraph [found via Great War Fiction blog] tells:

A previously unpublished essay by a writer who served alongside Hitler in the First World War trenches reveals that the future Führer was only obeying orders when he shaped his moustache into its tightly-clipped style. He was instructed to do so in order that it would fit under the respirator masks, introduced in response to British mustard gas attacks.

Writer Alexander Moritz Frey met with Hitler at 1915: “A pale, tall man tumbled down into the cellar after the first shells of the daily evening attacks had begun to fall, fear and rage glowing in his eyes.”

This is something new to historians, who mostly believed that Hitler was following fashion of that time. Anyway, trimming didn`t make to fit gas mask better and Hitler got gassed and temporarily blinded in 1918.

Check the article for how he looked with big Prussian moustache.

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Who paid Lenin?

I was intrigued by title of 2004 year documentary “Who paid Lenin?” I thought why? for what? I found out things I never heard about.

Two main persons in documentary: Russian revolutionary Lenin and a man called Alexander Parvus (born as Israel Lazarevich Gelfand).

 

Lenin and Parvus (Wikipedia.com)

At Wikipedia`s article about Lenin, Parvus and facts shown in documentary aren`t mentioned. Here are some interesting facts from the documentary:

  • Alexander Parvus arrived in Berlin in February, 1915. He met with some high standing German officials and wrote memorandum, where he explained a plan how to stop Russia from participating in WWI with help of revolution. Parvus had already participated in Russia`s revolution in 1905 and knew a lot about Russia.
  • Germans liked his ideas, Parvus got millions of German money. Part of the money he kept for himself, of course, and after the war he became one of the richest men in Europe. Other part was sent to Russia. To do it and keep secret contacts with men in Russia, offshores were set up in Copenhagen and later in Stockholm. Money was sent from German bank “Disconto Gesellshaft”.
  • Parvus met with Lenin in Swiss in May 1915. Lenin had never liked Parvus, but, as he was cynical and he wasn`t man of principle, he accepted Parvus plan and German money.
  • To meet German and Parvus goals, Lenin needed to be in Russia, but he was in Swiss. Special secret train was arranged for Lenin and other 33 people to get through Germany.
  • In Berlin train was stopped for 24 hours. It`s not proved, but possibly Lenin at that time met with some German statesmen. By the way, Lenin liked German beer.
  • Ironically, after October revolution when Lenin became first man in Russia he rejected Parvus (he wanted to play active role in Russia`s revolution too) with words “The revolution cannot be done with dirty hands”.  

Morality? Don`t trust other cynical man without principles, use him to meet your goals and then leave him. If not, he`ll use and leave you.

There is more to come for Lenin as I have got few more documentaries about him.

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