Today, as I sank into gloomy dreams,
I saw the whole host pass by:
Yorck and Moltke, Schulenberg, Schwerin,
Hassell, Popitz, Helfferich and Planck -

Not one thought of his own advantage,
Not one lacked a sense of duty,
Not one who, in glory and power, and in deadly danger,
Did not watch anxiously over the fate of the people.

These companions should long be born in mind:
They all had intellect and rank and name,
Who - sharing one goal - were led into these cells -

And the hangman' s noose awaited them all.
There are times when madness reigns.
And then it is the best who hang.

Albrecht Haushofer (1903 - 1945), "Moabiter Sonette"
(translated by Frank Gillard 2001)


Active support, tacit or lukewarm support and adaptive behaviour formed the general attitude of the Germans towards the Nazi regime. Only a small minority opposed it; and, they were split up in all kinds of different directions. The resistance of the "old elite" from the military, civil service and the churches joined together at first against Hitler’s war course. The resistance of the workers2 movement had started before that in 1933; it aimed at self-assertion and a "revolution against Hitler". In a similar fashion to the National Socialists, the Communists held a political world view which claimed to have a total monopoly of the truth. Modern conceptions of democracy can be found only seldom in the resistance movement, and among those who emigrated, only then after a long process of learning and experience. Only with the putsch attempt of 20 July 1944 were conservatives and socialists, Christians, union members and communists brought together. In exile during the war, modern democratic concepts were developed which subsequently took on a particular significance for the new beginning and reconstruction after the war.