The “1941 Plot” or a Bit of Alternate History (6)

Heinrich Himmler - Blut und Boden - Peter CrawfortdAs I have already mentioned, SS-Reichsfuhrer had at least one personal agent inside the coup – one Hans Bernd Gisevius. Consequently, he knew everything he needed to know about the Oster/Halder conspiracy in 1938… and in 1941 (we are in the realm of alternate history here).

After he received sufficiently detailed information about Oster/Halder Conspiracy II, Himmler had two options. The first one was obvious – expose the conspiracy to his boss Adolf Hitler, get his permission to arrest the conspirators, arrest them… in other words do just about the same thing he will do after the miserable failure of July 20th plot. Only this time “before it happens”.

However, saving the life of Adolf Hitler was not exactly what SS-Reichsfuhrer wanted. In fact, he wanted exactly the opposite – get the former killed and become a de-facto Führer himself.

So I am pretty sure that Heinrich Himmler (a really devious character) would have chosen a very different – and a far riskier – option. He would have allowed Commando Oster (or whoever its actual commander would be in this case) to ambush and kill Hitler – but annihilated (he had plenty of resources to make it happen) the teams sent to kill him and official successors – Göring and Hess (the latter by that time would have triumphantly returned to Germany).

And then used his Waffen-SS, Fallschirmjäger units and other ground forces of the Luftwaffe (even the Stuka dive bombers, if necessary) to suppress the coup, arrest the plotters, take full control over the Wehrmacht and integrate it into the State Protection Corps (thus executing the very much hostile takeover).

Officially acting on the orders of Hermann Göring – the official successor of Adolf Hitler in the case of the latter’s death (Rudolf Hess was the next in line after the Reichsmarschall).

In reality, Göring who had neither the desire, nor the ability (nor the resources for that matter) to govern the Reich, would have eagerly made Himmler the de-facto Führer immediately after becoming one de-jure.

And in a few months (at most) would retire to his beloved Carinhall northeast of Berlin in picturesque Schorfheide forest, opening the way form Himmler to become the Führer de-jure. Allowing the latter to become the transformation of Germany and German-controlled territories into SS-Staat.

Could SS-Reichsfuhrer have pulled it off? IMHO, his chances were roughly 70/30 versus the Wehrmacht generals.

What would have been the consequences? Had the generals won, we would most likely have seen the reincarnation of Imperial Germany – the Fourth Reich (possibly even officially) that would have been even more elitist and thus even less democratic than the Second one.

In the West, Germany would have returned to then 1914 borders; however, the new government would have made sure that Germany would have always remain one of three global superpowers (the other two being the British Empire and the USA).

And very probably the #1 superpower as Germany would have surely annexed and incorporated into the Reich the whole Poland, Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltic nations and a significant chunk of Russian territory.

Would it have been a change for the worse for the Poles? Oh, yes. And for the Czechs, too – compared to their independence. For much worse, I would think. The same will be true for the Baltic nations – Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, I am sure. As for Belarus, Ukraine and Russia – I do not think so. Generalplan Ost and Imperial Germany are not compatible at all (to put it mildly) so it is very much possible that under the German rule “all of the above” would have been far better off than under the murderous Bolshevik regime.

Had Himmler won… I would expect all West European nations conquered by Wehrmacht to become German protectorates. Their independence will be a thing of the past and they will be ruled by and iron fist of the SS. “The Man in the High Castle” would probably have been a reasonably accurate portrayal of the regime in those countries.

In the East… in the East the Nazi regime (surprise, surprise) would have been almost completely the same as in the West. For a very simple reason – Heinrich Himmler was a pragmatist (unlike the Wehrmacht, his Waffen-SS was a truly multinational and multicultural force and it was him, not Wehrmacht generals who let General Vlasov form the Russian Liberation Army).

Himmler had no desire to fight the nationwide revolt in occupied territories (an inevitable reaction to the genocide of the native population). Nor would he want to see the resurgence of the Red Army and of the Soviet state (also inevitable in that case).

Consequently, he would probably try to arrive at some kind of a win-win situation (for the local population, compared to life under Bolsheviks, of course). The Jews, however, would have been annihilated (there would have been no Holocaust under the new German Empire, of course).

The bottom line: Adolf Hitler would have been gone regardless of who would have won – the SS or the Wehrmacht; Himmler or the generals. Western Europe would have been much better off under the generals and in both cases much better off than in reality – as there would have been no destruction or any loss of life.

Greater Germany would have been much better off under the Generals (the second Imperial Germany would have been still way better than the totalitarian SS-Staat) and much, much better off than in reality (no loss of lives, no destruction of infrastructure, acquisition of colossal territories, etc.).

Poland and Czechoslovakia would have been much better off under Wehrmacht generals than under Himmler (obviously), but much worse off in terms of territories and regime (in both cases) than in reality.

For the German-occupied territories of the Soviet Union life under the Fourth Reich would have been far better than under the SS-Staat. And way, wat better than in reality (no Communist dictatorships, no loss of life and no wholesale destruction). Life under SS-Staat would have been probably comparable to that under Communist regime (minus the destruction and colossal loss of life).

The abovementioned analysis leads us to the following conclusions (which the “mainstream” historians would not like one bit). Had Adolf Hitler won the war, there was about 30% chance that this outcome would have been far better for all parties involved compared to what happened in reality.

And a 70% chance that the outcome would have been highly uneven – for some (i.e. Germany and even Britain who would have kept its empire intact) it would have been far better than what actually happened, for others (Western Europe, Poland, etc.) it would have been worse while for some (territories of the former Soviet Union) it would have been neither much better nor much worse.

Himmler’s Plot (2)

Heinrich Himmler - Grail - Hitler - Occult Reich - Peter Crawford 2013The situation in 1943 was even better. Much better. His control over the security services was consolidate into RSHA – Reich’s Main Security Office; his control over the economy was expanded and tightened (not least due to his total control over the supply of slave labor), more government officials were SS officers, SS-VT was now full-fledged, well-equipped and battle-hardened Waffen-SS, etc., etc.

Himmler carefully maintained the distance (and thus his autonomy) from Adolf Hitler. He deliberately stayed away from Hitler’s “inner circle”, knowing only too well that getting in was difficult, but getting out was utterly impossible.

Hitler was known to issue a very broad – and often vague – directives and left it out to his subordinate to find a way to make them a reality (and even figure out what the hell did the Führer want to be done).

Which suited Himmler just fine – and by 1943 he became an expert at presenting his own decisions and actions as those ordered by Adolf Hitler. In other words, he pretended to follow the orders of his boss while in reality he was playing his very own game.

But the most important (and radical) change was the new position of Hermann Goering who was now an official successor to Adolf Hitler as Führer of Germany (in the event of the latter’s death).

Goering had neither the ability nor the desire (nor the resources for that matter) to run the country so he would be very much willing to make Himmler the de-facto Reich President and Reich Chancellor – if only to avoid following Adolf Hitler into a better world.

Like everyone else in Germany, Goering was afraid of Himmler – and for a good reason; and his Fallschirmjäger (paratroopers), though a formidable force, were no match for Waffen-SS.

Hence I have no doubt that by 1943 (and possibly even earlier than that), Himmler and Goering developed a plan to liquidate their boss (more precisely, to let Tresckow & Co. do it) crush the military coup, execute the traitors and quite legally assume the full power in Germany proper and German-controlled territories.

This is the only explanation why the SS-run RSD (Reichssicherheitsdienst – “Reich security service”) that protected Adolf Hitler and other Nazi leaders, allowed the plotters to get the bomb on board his plane (!) and the suicide bombers (!!) to come close enough to The Führer to kill him with a 100% certainty. So on about half a dozen of occasions it was the Almighty Providence, not the RSD that saved Hitler’s life.

What was Himmler’s game plan for the “Day After”? Prior to the Kursk disaster, it was obvious – make von Manstein Commander-in-Chief of the Wehrmacht and give him a Cart Blanche for winning the war by annihilating the Red Army one battle after another.

After a year of suffering a 10:1 casualty ratio which von Manstein could deliver, Stalin would have had no other choice but to sue for peace – Brest-Litovsk style (or risk to run out of men).

The peace treaty between Germany and the Soviet Union (which obviously would give the former unrestricted access to oil and other natural resources of the latter) would automatically make war with Germany hopeless for both Great Britain and the USA as without Soviet cannon fodder and mountains of military hardware their chances of winning the war with the Third Reich were exactly zero.

So they would have reluctantly (and inevitably) signed the peace treaty with Germany on very attractive terms for the latter.

By the second half of 1943, the situation for Germany deteriorated significantly. I would say, even radically. Still, von Manstein would have been able to inflict losses on the Red Army severe enough to slow its advance substantially.

Which would have given Himmler a chance to prove to the Western Allies (via skillful diplomacy, of course) that they were fighting on the wrong side. In other words, to provide them with ample evidence (of which after Operation Barbarossa German intelligence had plenty) that the Soviet Union was an existential threat to them (and to the whole Western civilization) while the Nazi Germany was not.

In 1943 or even early 1944 (i.e. prior to the landing in Normandy), this plan would have worked. After the D-Day (and the destruction of Army Group Center by the Red Army) probably not (unbeknown to Himmler, the Americans were very close to the testing of a nuclear bomb which would stop Stalin in his tracks).

Hence the success of July 20th plot would not have changed things much for Himmler – only made his escape (leaving Goering alone in the cold) easier. Much easier, I would say. Easier enough to make a risky decision to allow the generals to blow up his boss to kingdom come.

“All of the above” proves (IMHO, beyond the reasonable doubt) that all Resistance plots (and possibly even the assassination attempt by Georg Elser) were in reality only parts of one giant Himmler’s plot.

the tools that SS-Reichsfuhrer tried to use (unsuccessfully) to get rid of his boss, achieve acceptable peace with both the Soviet Union and the Western Allies and embark on an immensely ambitious project of building the pan-European SS-Staat.

Himmler’s empire where the Mittelpunkt der Welt (the Center of the World) was to be located not in Berlin (I seriously doubt that Himmler would have pursued a technically impossible Welthaupstadt Germania project) but in Wewelsburg Castle.

Himmler was a “perverted monarchist” (his SS-Reich does look and feel like a highly distorted – dystopian even – version of a Holy Roman Empire). Consequently, it would be fair to assume that Die Neue SS (the real ODESSA – his underground Reich) was established as a monarchy of sorts.

With Heinrich Himmler as an emperor and the crown (not necessarily physical) passed to his eldest son (I have no doubt that after his escape Himmler produced quite a few children – in full compliance with the procreation ideology of the SS).

 

Himmler’s Plot (1)

himmlerbSS-Reichsfuhrer (among other things) Heinrich Himmler is probably the most underestimated (in terms of actual power wielded) Nazi leaders. In 1944, when he was at the peak of his power, he was in full control of all security services (order and criminal police, political police, internal and external intelligence services, personal protection services, concentration camps, POW camps, etc.) and wielded substantial power (via the Reserved Army and related organizations that he commanded in the Wehrmacht).

Through the SS-run enterprises, the “Circle of friends of SS-Reichsfuhrer”, control over supply of the slave labor and the SS-men carefully implanted into German economic system, he all but controlled the whole Nazi economy.

By bestowing high SS ranks on key government officials (and even business executives) he essentially made them his subordinates and thus acquired enormous influence on these organizations. Hey, he even had his own army – a million-strong Waffen-SS. True, it was under the operational command of Army generals, but it still was his army.

Thus, he was, no doubt, the second most powerful individual in the Third Reich (after Adolf Hitler, of course), feared by everyone, except The Führer. The latter considered Himmler to be almost as loyal as Goebbels – which was a mistake which almost became fatal.

Heinrich Himmler got his first name after his godfather, Prince Heinrich of Bavaria. True, the latter was not a heir apparent to the Bavarian throne (Crown Prince Rupprecht was), but he was still a member of the royal family of Bavaria (House of Wittelsbach).

Unlike his boss Adolf Hitler, Himmler was a believer in the occult and was said to have seen himself as the reincarnation of Henry I the Fowler (876-936), who is generally considered the founder of the medieval German state (and thus the first king of Germany).

On July 2nd, 1936, exactly one millennium after the death of Henry the Fowler, Himmler for the first time visited his grave in Quedlinburg Abbey – a women’s catholic monastery (currently a UNESCO World Heritage Site) in what is now the state of Saxony-Anhalt in Germany.

These pilgrimages (and quasi-religious ceremonies performed by Himmler at Henry’s grave) subsequently became regular. Interestingly enough, Himmler did not keep these trips private – he publicly declared Henry the Fowler “the first German king” and his grave – a recommended pilgrimage site for all Germans.

These two facts, IMHO, provide the most realistic explanation for all key decisions and actions of Heinrich Himmler. Bavaria was a semi-autonomous state within the German Empire (the Second Reich); consequently, it is no surprise that Himmler began to carefully, diligently and steadfastly build his SS-Staat – essentially his own state within the new Reich – the third one. And became the king, the emperor of this state.

But his ambitions went much further than that. Although he very carefully (and very successfully) cultivated the image of der treue Heinrich (“the faithful Heinrich” – faithful to Hitler that is), in reality he was nothing but.

Considering himself to be a reincarnation of Henry the Fowler, he wanted to become not only the first King of New Germany, but the first Emperor of the New Holy German Empire – like Henry’s son Otto the Great. “Holy” in the occult (neo-pagan) sense, of course. The pan-European Aryan empire.

There was a minor problem, however – Adolf Hitler stood in the way. Hitler, who had a very different vision for Germany and Europe, to put it mildly. A vision totally incompatible with Himmler’s – and thus with his grandiose ambitions.

So Himmler predictably (he was the chief of security services and thus a professional murderer) began to plot the physical elimination of his boss and his own ascent to power.

What was Himmler’s real perception of – and attitude towards – Adolf Hitler? We will never know – and it really does not matter (although I suspect that Himmler probably considered himself an aristocrat by blood and spirit and Hitler – a despicable plebeian).

What matters is that Himmler was very serious about doing away with his boss – and smart enough to make someone else to do it. And to do it at exactly the right time – and in a way that could never ever be traced to SS-Reichsfuhrer.

By September 1938 he was probably ready to take over the Reich – he had a full control over the security services, a decent control over the economy, had his people infiltrate just about all government entities that mattered and recruited a sufficient number of government officials of a required influence.

He was not concerned about most of Wehrmacht generals – if handled properly (and Heinrich Himmler was a Gross Master at that) they would serve the next Führer as loyally as they served the previous one.

He already had the three regiments of SS-VT – the nucleus of the future Waffen-SS. It was commanded by Paul Hausser – one of the most talented and efficient generals the German army could offer.

Through his personal undercover agent Hans Gisevius (and possibly others), he knew about every step of the plotters – long before the set was actually taken. However, he was well-informed by Ausland-SD that there is no chance whatsoever of Germany or France would defend Czechoslovakia from German invasion and that Poland (out of well-founded fear of being occupied by the Soviet Union) will never allow the Soviet troops to pass through its territory to fight for the Czechs.

Hence his assessment of the situation was far more realistic than that of the plotters and he was 100% sure that the Brits and the French will accept Hitler’s ultimatum. Hence, the chances of the war breaking out (and thus of the military coup by Oster, Halder & Co.) were precisely nil.