August 29th in German History: German Reich Dissolves the Danish Government

The first years of the Second World War saw Germany quickly overrun most of Western and Eastern Europe. These nations were placed under harsh occupations which saw freedoms restricted and reprisals carried out against any who resisted. However, not all conquered nations were so harshly treated, at least initially. Denmark, which surrendered within six hours,Continue reading “August 29th in German History: German Reich Dissolves the Danish Government”

August 28th in German History: The Battle of Heligoland Blight

The beginning of the 20th century had seen a great shift in German foreign policy. Kaiser Wilhelm II wanted to assert Germany’s position on the world stage. To this end, he pursued a program of naval construction with the intent of building a fleet that could contend with the Royal Navy. The resulting naval armsContinue reading “August 28th in German History: The Battle of Heligoland Blight”

August 27th in German History: The Sarny Massacre Begins

When discussing the Second World War, one has to remember that battles were important not just in that they determined the outcome of the war. All too often, the military outcomes were life or death matters for civilian populations. When Poland fell in 1939 its occupiers, the USSR and Nazi Germany, set about killing unwantedContinue reading “August 27th in German History: The Sarny Massacre Begins”

August 26th in German History: The Battle on the Marchfeld

The Habsburg dynasty is commonly the object of ridicule and humor for their slow decline that began in the 17th century and ended with the destruction of Austria-Hungary at the end of WWI. However, for nearly a millennia they were the preeminent force in Central Europe and at times held sway over entire continents. TheContinue reading “August 26th in German History: The Battle on the Marchfeld”

August 25th in German History: The Birth of Erich Honecker

Germany had more than its fair share of totalitarian leaders during the 20th century. While Adolf Hitler ruled the country for twelve years, for forty years the eastern half was controlled by a communist dictatorship. This regime, while not as brutal as that of the Nazis, maintained a repressive grip on the people of EastContinue reading “August 25th in German History: The Birth of Erich Honecker”

August 24th in German History: Adolf Hitler Orders the End of the T4 Killings

The T4 killings were the systematic mass murder of much of the elderly, critically ill and disabled population of Germany. T4 is an abbreviation of the address of a government building which recruited and organised those involved in the program. On August 24th, 1941, Adolf Hitler ordered that the systematic killings stop. However, they continuedContinue reading “August 24th in German History: Adolf Hitler Orders the End of the T4 Killings”

August 23rd in German History: The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact is Signed

The Soviet Union was the nation that sacrificed the most in the defeat of Germany. As such, we often forget that it also was crucial to enabling Germany to invade and take over much of Europe. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was a non aggression pact signed by the USSR and Nazi Germany which gave Germany aContinue reading “August 23rd in German History: The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact is Signed”

August 22nd in German History: German Troops Perpetrate the Holocaust of Kedros

While the German occupations of France, Poland, and Yugoslavia are well-known, the occupation of Greece is not often discussed. From 1941 until 1945, Greece was occupied by both Italian and German forces following the invasion of the country. The occupying forces committed numerous atrocities. One of the worst, the Holocaust of Kedros, occurred on theContinue reading “August 22nd in German History: German Troops Perpetrate the Holocaust of Kedros”

August 21st in German History: Christian Schad is Born

Although Germany is known more for its political figures and its scientists, it has also produced numerous artists. One was Christian Schad, a painter and photographer who was part of the Dada and New Objectivity movements. He was born on August 21st, 1894. Schad was born in the town of Miesbach in Upper Bavaria. HisContinue reading “August 21st in German History: Christian Schad is Born”

August 20th in German History: Germany Captures Brussels

Soon after Germany entered WWI, it invaded the neutral nation of Belgium. It wanted to bypass French defenses on the French-German border and so sought to move troops through Belgian territory. When the Belgian government refused to allow German armies to pass, Germany declared war and quickly invaded the kingdom. Although the Belgians fought bravely,Continue reading “August 20th in German History: Germany Captures Brussels”