The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression
Volume I Chapter IX
The Execution of the Plan to Invade Czechoslovakia<(Part 23 of 29)

In mid-February 1939 a Slovak delegation journeyed to Berlin. It consisted of Tuca, one of the Slovaks with whom the Germans had been in contact, and Karmasin, the paid representative of the Nazi conspirators in Slovakia. They conferred with Hitler and Ribbentrop in the Reichs Chancellery in Berlin on Sunday, 12 February 1939. The captured German Foreign Office minutes of that meeting read as follows:

"After a brief welcome Tuca thanks the Fuehrer for granting this meeting. He addresses the Fuehrer with 'My Fuehrer' and he voices the opinion that he, though only a modest

[Page 566]

man himself, might well claim to speak for the Slovak nation. The Czech courts and prison gave him the right to make such a statement. He states that the Fuehrer had not only opened the Slovak question but that he had been also the first one to acknowledge the dignity of the Slovak nation. The Slovakian people will gladly fight under the leadership of the Fuehrer for the maintenance of European civilization. Obviously future association with the Czechs had become an impossibility for the Slovaks from a moral as well as economic point of view." (2790-PS)

It is noteworthy that Tuca addressed Hitler as "My Fuehrer". During this meeting the Nazi conspirators apparently were successful in planting the idea of insurrection with the Slovak delegation. The final sentence of this document, spoken by Tuca, is conclusive:

"I entrust the fate of my people to your care." (2790-PS)

It is apparent from these documents that in mid-February 1939 the Nazis had a well-disciplined group of Slovaks at their service, many of them drawn from the ranks of Father Hlinka's party. Flattered by the personal attention of such men as Hitler and Ribbentrop, and subsidized by German representatives, these Slovaks proved willing tools in the hands of the Nazi conspirators.

In addition to the Slovaks, the Nazi conspirators made use of the few Germans still remaining within the mutilated Czech republic. Kundt, Henlein's deputy who had been appointed leader of this German minority, created as many artificial "focal points of German culture" as possible. Germans from the- districts handed over to Germany were ordered from Berlin to continue their studies at the German University in Prague and to make it a center of aggressive Naziism. With the assistance of German civil servants, a deliberate campaign of Nazi infiltration into Czech public and private institutions was carried out, and the Henleinists gave full cooperation with Gestapo agents from the Reich who appeared on Czech soil. The Nazi "political activity" was designed to undermine and to weaken Czech resistance to the commands from Germany. In the face of continued threats and duress on both diplomatic and propaganda levels, the Czech government was unable to take adequate measures against these trespasses on its sovereignty. (998-PS; 3061-PS)

In early March, with the date for the invasion of Czechoslovakia already close at hand, fifth column activity moved into its final phase. In Bohemia and Moravia the FS, Henlein's equivalent of the SS, were in touch with the Nazi conspirators in the Reich and laid the groundwork for the events of 14 and 15 March.

[Page 567]

An article by SS-Gruppenfuehrer Karl Hermann Frank, published in Boehmen un Maehrerl,, the official periodical of the Reichs Protector of Bohemia and Moravia, March 1941, page 79, reveals with considerable frankness the functions which the FS and SS served and the pride the Nazi conspirators took in the activities of these organizations:

"The SS on 15 March 1939

"A modern people and a modern state are today unthinkable without political troops. To these are allotted the special task of being the advance guard of the political will and the guarantor of its unity. This is especially true of the German folk-groups, which have their home in some other people's state. Accordingly the Sudeten German Party had formerly also organized its political troop, the Voluntary Vigilantes (Freiwilliger Selbstschutz), called 'FS' for short. This troop was trained essentially in accordance with the principles of the SS, so far as these could be used in this region at that time. The troop was likewise assigned here the special task of protecting the homeland, actively, if necessary. It stood up well in its first test in this connection, wherever in the fall crisis of 1938 it had to assume the protection of the homeland, arms in hand.

"After the annexation of the Sudeten Gau, the tasks of the FS were transferred essentially to the German student organizations as compact troop formations in Prague and Brunn, aside from the isolated German communities which remained in the second republic. This was also natural because many active students from the Sudeten Gau were already members of the FS. The student organizations then had to endure this test, in common with other Germans, during the crisis of March 1939 ***"


"In the early morning hours of March 15, after the announcement of the planned entry of German troops in various localities, German men had to act in some localities in order to assure a quiet course of events, either by assumption of the police authority, as for instance in Brunn, or by corresponding instruction of the police president, etc. In some Czech offices, men had likewise, in the early hours of the morning, begun to burn valuable archives and the material of political files. It was also necessary to take measures here in order to prevent foolish destruction ***. How significant the many-sided and comprehensive measures were considered by the competent German agencies, follows from the fact that

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many of the men either on March 15 itself or on the following days were admitted into the SS with fitting acknowledgment, in part even through the Reichsfuehrer SS himself or through SS Group Leader Heydrich. The activities and deeds of these men were thereby designated as accomplished in the interest of the SS.

"Immediately after the corresponding divisions of the SS had marched in with the first columns of the German Army and had assumed responsibility in the appropriate sectors, the men here placed themselves at once at their further disposition and became valuable auxiliaries and collaborators.***" (2826-PS)

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