According to the “official version” of events, Heinrich Luitpold Himmler committed suicide on May 23rd, 1945 while in British custody. The (in)famous historian David Irving (who at the time of this book being written was still working on mammoth biography of SS Reichsfuhrer) claimed in his lectures that he has some serious evidence that Himmler did not commit suicide but was murdered by his British captors in a bout of uncontrollable rage. Which (a bout of rage, I mean), I find entirely possible.
However, even the murder theory does not change the fundamental statement that Heinrich Himmler (by that time no longer the SS-Reichsfuhrer) was detained on May 21st (by former Soviet POWs, of all people) and two days later was brought to the British 31st Civilian Interrogation Camp near Lüneburg (a small picturesque town in the German state of Lower Saxony).
Although Himmler had on him a perfectly legit ID with a different name (the identity was false, but the ID was genuine), he almost immediately identified himself as Himmler – although he was not even suspected of being one by the British.
And almost immediately after t5his voluntary self-identification he either committed suicide by biting on a standard-issue cyanide capsule (most likely) or was beaten to death by his captors (which I – unlike David Irving – find far less likely).
For every thorough and unbiased analyst the official version makes no sense whatsoever. None at all. Zero. Zilch. A far more likely theory (that I will present shortly) is very different – and makes much, much more sense.
According to this theory, the whole Lüneburg thing was a clever deception that had but one objective – buy sufficient time for Heinrich Himmler to leave Germany and settle in a safe place in a neutral nation. Most likely, in a German-speaking area of Switzerland, of course. And to begin working on his Fourth Reich project.
The primary reason why the official version makes no sense whatsoever is that it portrays Heinrich Himmler as a total amateur in politics who makes one childish mistake after the other – and finally makes the fatal one.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Himmler was exceptionally smart , knowledgeable, competent and cunning political operator with 20+ years’ experience in the cutthroat politics of the Third Reich. A very successful experience, I might add.
SS-Reichsfuhrer was an excellent judge of character (of friends and enemies alike), and a highly competent planner who exceled in all aspects risk management (he ran one of the most powerful and efficient security services in the world, after all). He always had not just “Plan B”, but “Plan C”, “Plan D”, etc.
Oh, and he was a genius – no doubt about that. A dark and murderous genius, sure – but a genius nevertheless. Because only a genius could have created (from scratch, mind you) the SS-Empire and the SS-Staat (“the state within a Nazi state”). Not to mention the Waffen-SS – very probably the most fearsome fighting force in human history.
And a genius of this caliber making such stupid and disastrous mistake and being that ignorant… give me a break fellas. Not possible. Not possible at all.
Now let’s analyze the official version in detail and prove (IMHO, beyond the reasonable doubt) that it makes no sense and is a complete fiction. Let’s start at the very beginning of 1945 when Himmler, sensing that the end of the Third Reich was just around the corner, radically intensified his attempts to negotiate a separate peace settlement with the Western Allies (the USA, Great Britain, etc.).
Or so it seemed (still seems to all “mainstream” historians). Which is a great shame, because all these attempts were nothing but a cover for his real objectives – disappear after the end of the war, develop the ODESSA (“Die Neue SS”) infrastructure, supply it with sufficient financial resources and wait for the right moment (the “Singularity Event”) to transform whatever regime would be in place in Europe at that time into the Fourth Reich.
Since 1934, Himmler had under his command (as the SS-Reichsfuhrer) Ausland-SD – the foreign intelligence service of the Nazi Party (subsequently Department VI of the RSHA led by the youngest and the most charismatic SS general Walter Schellenberg).
In February of 1944, Ausland-SD performed a very much hostile takeover of Abwehr – the military intelligence and counterintelligence service. Hence, Himmler knew perfectly well that no matter how the Brits and the Americans hated the Soviets (and they did), they had no desire to fight them in a “hot” war.
They were (correctly) confident that they would be able to contain the “Red Beast” within acceptable boundaries (“Operation Unthinkable” was, well, really unthinkable). Hence, they would agree only to the unconditional surrender of Germany – simultaneously on both Western and Eastern front (i.e. to the unified team of the Soviets and the Western Allies).
Himmler also knew perfectly well that his reputation in the West was that of a bloody butcher, of a mass murderer, of a demon in flesh and blood, of the worst and the most horrible criminal in human history. Hence he had now illusions – he knew for a fact that no Western leader would ever even talk to him (let alone make him his ally in their war with Bolshevism).
Hence, all his “attempts to negotiate with the Western democracies” were a show, a theater, a deception a cover for his “ODESSA Plan”. And quite a show it was – SS-Reichsfuhrer put the best Hollywood directors (and the most cunning politicians) to shame. To a great shame, in fact.
First, he sent his personal masseur, Felix Kersten to neutral Sweden, and used him (without telling him about his real objectives, of course) as an intermediary in negotiations with Count Folke Bernadotte, head of the Swedish Red Cross (who was supposed to serve as an intermediary between Himmler and the Western Allies).
Letters were exchanged between the two men and direct meetings were arranged by another cunning fox – head of Ausland-SD Walter Schellenberg. On 21 April, Himmler met with Norbert Masur, a Swedish representative of the World Jewish Congress and offered him… the release of Jewish concentration camp inmates.
As a result of these negotiations, about 20,000 inmates were released in the famous White Buses operation. The Final Solution of the Jewish question could wait – until the advent of the Fourth Reich.
On 23 April, Himmler met directly with Bernadotte at the Swedish consulate in Lübeck. Representing himself as the provisional leader of Germany, he claimed that Hitler would be dead within the next few days. Both parties knew that the first part of this claim (there was no doubt in the second) was totally bogus as the death of Adolf Hitler automatically made Göring, not Himmler, the new leader of Germany.
But Bernadotte for some reason (a secret part of the “Wallenberg Affair”?) decided to play ball – although he knew for a fact that both the Brits and the Americans knew perfectly well that Himmler’s claim was a total bunk and thus will not negotiate with him for a purely legal reason as well.
Still, Himmler asked Bernadotte to inform General Dwight Eisenhower that Germany wished to surrender to the West. Bernadotte asked Himmler to put his proposal in writing, and Himmler obliged. The show had to go on – but only Himmler knew where it was all going – and why.
The infamous Göring Telegram sent on the same day did change things a bit, but not much. Two days later the enraged Hitler issued a telegram to Göring telling him that he had committed “high treason” and gave him the option of resigning his offices in exchange for his life. However, not long after that, Bormann ordered the SS in Berchtesgaden to arrest Göring. Which was for show only as the latter was too well-protected by his Luftwaffe troops.
And then all hell broke loose for Himmler (or so it seemed). On the evening of 28 April, the BBC broadcast a Reuters news report about Himmler’s attempted negotiations with the western Allies.
Hitler flew into a rage at this apparent betrayal, and told those still with him in the Führer bunker complex that Himmler’s secret negotiations (which were actually not that secret) were the worst treachery he had ever known.
The next day (less than 24 hours prior to his suicide), in his testament Hitler declared both Himmler and Göring to be traitors. He stripped Himmler of all of his party and state offices and expelled him from the Nazi Party. Making the previously almost omnipotent SS-Reichsfuhrer a nobody at best and a walking target for the SS at worst.
Which apparently did not bother Himmler in the least. Like Göring, he was well-protected by troops fiercely loyal personally to him – only by the SS, not Luftwaffe. Still, the official version of his meeting with Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz – a new head of German state – makes no sense at all.
According to this version, Himmler stated that he was entitled to a position in Dönitz’s interim government as Reichsführer-SS, believing the SS would be in a good position to restore and maintain order after the war.
Which was a total bull because (a) there was no such thing as a SS-Reichsfuhrer position in German government – even in Nazi Germany; (b) Himmler was fired from this post by Hitler – and this order was still very much in effect even after Hitler’s suicide; (c) Germany was to be occupied by the Allies who were very much capable of maintaining order without any help from the SS; and (d) the latter was considered a criminal organization by the allies and thus its members were to be arrested and prosecuted, not used as a police force.
According to the same version, Dönitz repeatedly rejected Himmler’s overtures and issued an official order on May 6th (two days before the unconditional surrender of Germany) formally dismissing Himmler from all his posts. Which made no sense as well as Himmler was already fired from all his positions and even expelled from the Party by Adolf Hitler.
IMHO, in reality the conversation between Dönitz was very different. Himmler informed the new German President about his Fourth Reich project and asked for a few subs to move some valuables to Argentina (U-530, U-977 and possibly others) and for some cover for his disappearance. Dönitz did not like Himmler (to put it mildly), but he really hated the Allies. So he gave the former all support that he was capable of at that time.
According to the official version of events, Himmler – fired by his now dead boss and rejected by his comrade-in-arms decided to go into hiding. Choosing not just stupid, but a genuinely insane (suicidal even) option – using the real ID of… the sergeant of GFP (Geheime Feldpolizei) – the secret military police of the German Wehrmacht.
Knowing perfectly well (he consumed all valuable intelligence reports) that the GFP ID guaranteed detention and arrest by the Allies – and only if one was really lucky (the Soviets shot GFP men on the spot so they were issued fake IDs of other military units).
Naturally, on May 21st, after about ten days of “aimless wandering” Himmler and his entourage were stopped and detained at a checkpoint set up by former Soviet POWs. Over the following two days, he was moved from camp to camp (POW camp, I mean) and was finally brought to the British 31st Civilian Interrogation Camp near Lüneburg.
Unlike the Soviets, the British did not care much about GFP, so the duty officer, Captain Thomas Selvester, began a routine interrogation, apparently having no clue about who he was interrogating.
Then, completely out of the blue, Himmler identified himself as, well, Heinrich Himmler. Which completely contradicted his initially stated objective of going into hiding (had he wanted to surrender to the Allies, he would have done it officially – like Göring – which would have been far less risky).
Selvester had the prisoner searched (incredibly missing the cyanide capsule). Himmler was taken to the headquarters of the Second British Army in Lüneburg, where a doctor attempted to conduct a medical exam on him (a standard operating procedure).
When the doctor attempted to examine the inside of Himmler’s mouth, the prisoner suddenly jerked his head away, biting into a hidden potassium cyanide pill (when did he manage to place it inside his mouth and why it was not found during the search?).
He collapsed onto the floor and was dead within 15 minutes (way too long for cyanide poisoning). Shortly afterward, his body was buried in an unmarked grave near Lüneburg. The grave’s location remains unknown.
Again, the whole story makes no sense whatsoever. If Himmler wanted to commit suicide, why didn’t he do it much earlier – right after his rejection by Dönitz. If he did not want to do it, why did he identify himself, knowing very well that it was a death sentence – either by his own hand or by hangman’s noose.
It he identified himself to be taken by the Supreme Command of the Allies, why did he choose such a convoluted way to do it – an open surrender was far easier and far less risky. If it was an accident, why did he place the murderous capsule into his mouth in the first place?
The only theory which makes complete sense is the one that assumes that it was not Himmler who committed suicide in Lüneburg, but an SS-man who pretended to be him (his almost perfect look-alike – his “carbon copy”, if you will).
The one who sacrificed his life – not just for his Reichsfuhrer (although there were plenty of Ss members who would have gladly died for Himmler), but for the Fourth Reich – for the glorious future of his beloved Germany.
He and his comrades – who were well aware of the whole plot, but took this secret to their graves – did everything to get themselves captured, attract attention of the Allies and finally convince the latter that “that horrible monster” Heinrich Himmler was dead, setting the latter free to pursue his “Fourth Reich” project.
IMHO, the abovementioned facts, logic and common sense are more than enough to prove beyond the reasonable doubt that Heinrich Himmler did not commit suicide, but survived the war and for quite some time (possibly, for decades) had been steadfastly pursuing his Fourth Reich project.
However, let’s try to find some additional evidence that supports this theory. IMHO, the best place to look for this evidence is the book written by W. Hugh Thomas – a professional surgeon and an experienced forensic investigator.
The name of the book speaks for itself: “The Unlikely Death of Heinrich Himmler”