Results 1 to 16 of 16

Thread: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

  1. #1

    Default Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Attentat 1942: Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich, governor of the Nazi-occupied Czech Republic, was attacked on May 27 1942 in a British operation. Two squads of Czechoslovak-exile commandos had been inserted into the occupied zone by parachute in late 1941, to link up with local resistance. Months of planning culminated in the partly-successful attack: though Heydrich survived initially, he later died of his injuries. Every one of the participants on the ground was uncovered and killed by the Germans. Civilian deaths due to prompt reprisals numbered in the thousands.

    Upon learning of the nature of the mission, resistance leaders begged the Czechoslovak government-in-exile to call off the attack, saying that "An attempt against Heydrich's life.. would be of no use to the Allies and its consequences for our people would be immeasurable."
    What did the assassination accomplish? Was it worth it, militarily or strategically? Was it ethically justified?

    Hit and run thread -- I offer no further input.
    Vitiate Man.

    History repeats the old conceits
    The glib replies, the same defeats


    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 

  2. #2
    Ja mata, TosaInu Forum Administrator edyzmedieval's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Fortress of the Mountains
    Posts
    11,157

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Hit and miss was the operation to be fair - Heydrich was taken out of the equation but the reprisals and subsequent betrayal by the Resistance movement member destroyed 2 entire villages and created many other massacres.

    By 1942 the war was on the edge, going for Heydrich when they knew how many people would be assaulted by the Nazis was a disaster of the idea.
    Ja mata, TosaInu. You will forever be remembered.

    Proud

    Been to:

    Swords Made of Letters - 1938. The war is looming - and Alexandre Reythier does not have much time left to protect his country.

  3. #3
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Militarily? No. Anything post Barbarossa is a ripple in that wider ocean. Heydichs death or life does not change the carnage or material expenditure in the Pale.

    Ethically? I mean it depends how you look at it. If you feel like he would have been more adept at implementing his final solution than those that came after him, ethically justified. If you feel like those lives were lost years before they managed to corner him, not justified. If your God or your universe demands a (legitimate) blood debt, consequences be damned, justified.

    Over a 1000 innocent people were killed as a direct result of his death. Were more than a 1000 people saved because he was not there to see his vision through? That is an unknowable.
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

    Members thankful for this post (3):



  4. #4
    Coffee farmer extraordinaire Member spmetla's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Kona, Hawaii
    Posts
    2,691

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    From the military viewpoint though this would take resources away from the fighting fronts to conduct extra anti-partisan patrols. Other military governors of occupied lands would take note and step up their security measures at the expense of any working relations with the locals. Reinforce the viewpoint among the German soldiers that they can't trust any Czechs creating a 'siege' mentality that separates them from the populace and makes them even more heavy handed in day to day life (aside from the actual reprisals). The Czech resistance would probably find more recruits and help in the long run as the reprisals spread the fear and hatred of the German occupation and spur more fence sitters into action against the Germans.

    Perhaps no outcome on the length of the war in the big picture but having Bohemia and Moravia with their arms industries hosting any sort of resistance be it in outward fighting or sabotage of the production works all adds to the final victory over the Germans. Keep in mind that 'Total War' doesn't just blur but usually erases the care toward civilians in that they are too the means of production for the enemies war effort.
    Last edited by spmetla; 07-24-2018 at 19:18.

    "Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?"
    -Abraham Lincoln

  5. #5

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Dunno, but criminally underrated film.

  6. #6
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,299

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    In some ways, I suspect that whacking Heydrich was of substantial value in furthering partisan efforts throughout Europe.

    Setting aside his demonstrable evil, Heydrich was intelligent, pragmatic, and an able administrator. His carrot and stick approach was quite far along in suppressing resistance efforts in Bohemia/Moravia. Had he survived, he had the clout to spread this approach more broadly and to make strides against partisan activities throughout the Nazi occupation zone. This would have diminished the partisan effort and put more German troops into the field.

    His death, and the classic SS thug lash out and destroy response, set exactly the kind of tone that appealed to the cunning but less intelligent cadre that was the norm for Nazi leadership and which also ended up furthering the resistance efforts through its very harshness.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  7. #7
    Ja mata, TosaInu Forum Administrator edyzmedieval's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Fortress of the Mountains
    Posts
    11,157

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Heydrich was an able administrator and that's why he had such a high ranking in the army, notwithstanding his political affiliation. Nevertheless, Operation Anthropoid went a bit awry despite his lack of sustained protection (quite surprising), it wasn't carried out exceptionally well which also probably added to the anger since Heydrich almost survived.
    Ja mata, TosaInu. You will forever be remembered.

    Proud

    Been to:

    Swords Made of Letters - 1938. The war is looming - and Alexandre Reythier does not have much time left to protect his country.

  8. #8
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,299

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by edyzmedieval View Post
    Heydrich was an able administrator and that's why he had such a high ranking in the army, notwithstanding his political affiliation. Nevertheless, Operation Anthropoid went a bit awry despite his lack of sustained protection (quite surprising), it wasn't carried out exceptionally well which also probably added to the anger since Heydrich almost survived.
    He was not army. He was cashiered navy. He joined the SS and founded (more or less) the SD within it. He passed pilot training and flew combat with the Luftwaffe in 1940 and 1941. He was not a particularly skilled pilot and was eventually forbidden to fly combat because of the info in his head should he have been captured. Physical courage? Certainly. But not a soldier and no more than adequate as a pilot.

    But he was pacifying Czechoslovakia and was being considered for the top post in occupied France. The Maquis would have faced a much tougher opponent in RH than they did.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  9. #9
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Heydrich living may have spared a few thousand men and a few dozen man hours from anti partisan activity. The ability of one man to affect institutions are overblown in this thread.

    Mers-El-Kebir , Dontiz being denied his U boats, and repulsion from Moscow are the watershed moments in the second World War. I suppose you could add midway but probably not.
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

  10. #10
    Praefectus Fabrum Senior Member Anime BlackJack Champion, Flash Poker Champion, Word Up Champion, Shape Game Champion, Snake Shooter Champion, Fishwater Challenge Champion, Rocket Racer MX Champion, Jukebox Hero Champion, My House Is Bigger Than Your House Champion, Funky Pong Champion, Cutie Quake Champion, Fling The Cow Champion, Tiger Punch Champion, Virus Champion, Solitaire Champion, Worm Race Champion, Rope Walker Champion, Penguin Pass Champion, Skate Park Champion, Watch Out Champion, Lawn Pac Champion, Weapons Of Mass Destruction Champion, Skate Boarder Champion, Lane Bowling Champion, Bugz Champion, Makai Grand Prix 2 Champion, White Van Man Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, BlackJack Champion, Stans Ski Jumping Champion, Smaugs Treasure Champion, Sofa Longjump Champion Seamus Fermanagh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Latibulm mali regis in muris.
    Posts
    11,299

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strike For The South View Post
    Heydrich living may have spared a few thousand men and a few dozen man hours from anti partisan activity. The ability of one man to affect institutions are overblown in this thread.
    You are correct. Had Heydrich lived he would likely have gone on to cause fits for The Maquis after pacifying Czechoslovakia...but could not have materially changed the outcome of the war, nor even delayed the conclusion significantly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Strike For The South View Post
    Mers-El-Kebir , Dontiz being denied his U boats, and repulsion from Moscow are the watershed moments in the second World War. I suppose you could add midway but probably not.
    You have identified less "obvious" turning points than those typically cited (Battle of Britain, El Alamein, Stalingrad. D-Day) and I like the tone you set with that. Each of the decisions/actions you cite lead to or embodied a watershed moment when something that had truly war-changing results attached to it.

    For the Pacific, Midway would not fit. Even before Midway, there was no possibility of the Japanese winning the war. I'd note Pearl Harbor as the crux event. Surprise attack character led to remorselessness on USA (thus undercutting the hope of winning via war weariness) and AH declared war thus completing the Anglo-US alliance effort of which Mers-el-Kebir had been an important component.
    "The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.” -- Milton Friedman

    "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule." -- H. L. Mencken

  11. #11

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Thread's probably done, so slight change of subject:

    Didn't the Nazis bring the same techniques to occupied France and Central Europe as the European colonizers brought to Africa and Asia?
    Vitiate Man.

    History repeats the old conceits
    The glib replies, the same defeats


    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 

  12. #12
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    Thread's probably done, so slight change of subject:

    Didn't the Nazis bring the same techniques to occupied France and Central Europe as the European colonizers brought to Africa and Asia?
    I mean, not really? When talking about colonization it is important to remember that the entirety of the colony was set up for extraction of wealth and resources. The infrastructure and economy are completely geared for that. Germany did extract material wealth (rather crudley) from its conquered places in the west but they never really bothered to set up these polities as subservient states.

    This is partly due to the infancy of NAZI administration in these places, partly due to a more "gentlemanly" war in the west, and partly due to the fact it was simply easier just to use existing infrastructure.

    It is better to see Central/Eastern Europe as a scorched earth demographic catastrophe. The area was not so much colonized as it was remade with new peoples.
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strike For The South View Post
    I mean, not really? When talking about colonization it is important to remember that the entirety of the colony was set up for extraction of wealth and resources. The infrastructure and economy are completely geared for that. Germany did extract material wealth (rather crudley) from its conquered places in the west but they never really bothered to set up these polities as subservient states.

    This is partly due to the infancy of NAZI administration in these places, partly due to a more "gentlemanly" war in the west, and partly due to the fact it was simply easier just to use existing infrastructure.

    It is better to see Central/Eastern Europe as a scorched earth demographic catastrophe. The area was not so much colonized as it was remade with new peoples.
    I'm interested in the mechanical similarities between the imposition of occupation within Europe, to the European colonial imposition of order abroad. What about social and administrative structures of control? For Western Europe.

    Nazi plans for Eastern Europe apparently drew inspiration from Italian ones for North Africa (what the French had accomplished in the 19th c.?). Eastern Europe is much easier to interpret in a colonial framework, so I'm not emphasizing it.
    Last edited by Montmorency; 08-03-2018 at 13:36.
    Vitiate Man.

    History repeats the old conceits
    The glib replies, the same defeats


    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 

  14. #14
    Old Town Road Senior Member Strike For The South's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Between Louis' sheets
    Posts
    10,369

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    I'm interested in the mechanical similarities between the imposition of occupation within Europe, to the European colonial imposition of order abroad. What about social and administrative structures of control? For Western Europe.
    So the similarities are pretty obvious. The NAZIs extracted wealth from the conquered territories andThe Nazis imposed themselves as the top strata on an existing social structure. I think it really ends there.

    The NAZIs wanted a closed trading system that much more closely resembled mercantilism or Bonapartes contential system rather than the cutthroat capitalism that went hand in hand with late stage imperialism. Western resources and treasure went directly toward a German war machine and not on the open markets.

    While the NAZIs oppressed the French people. It was not the same kind oppression that was in the colonies. That should probably go without saying.

    I would actually take your question a step further. The world wars are essentially the terminus of "total war" thinking. That is, total mobilization for total domination.

    The real question is how the French Revolution tied the individual to the nation state as an extension of himself. Doing this, hes allowing himself to be total used by the state apparatus in order to further military goals. Until the individual fully submits to the nation, the nation cannot fully extract his labors.
    There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford

    My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

    I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation.

    Member thankful for this post:



  15. #15

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strike For The South View Post
    So the similarities are pretty obvious. The NAZIs extracted wealth from the conquered territories andThe Nazis imposed themselves as the top strata on an existing social structure. I think it really ends there.

    The NAZIs wanted a closed trading system that much more closely resembled mercantilism or Bonapartes contential system rather than the cutthroat capitalism that went hand in hand with late stage imperialism. Western resources and treasure went directly toward a German war machine and not on the open markets.

    While the NAZIs oppressed the French people. It was not the same kind oppression that was in the colonies. That should probably go without saying.
    I believe the underlying question is one that deserves more attention, although it may after all be unfair to ask here if it's more a research project than a stone soup opportunity.

    That is, what if any correspondences were there between how colonizers imposed power and order in Algeria, South Africa, India, Indochina versus France, Netherlands, Denmark, Norway? What hierarchies and authority relations? What roles and controls for common folk? Were colonial techniques transplanted or reproduced, were new ones invented, or was it something else entirely?

    I would actually take your question a step further. The world wars are essentially the terminus of "total war" thinking. That is, total mobilization for total domination.

    The real question is how the French Revolution tied the individual to the nation state as an extension of himself. Doing this, hes allowing himself to be total used by the state apparatus in order to further military goals. Until the individual fully submits to the nation, the nation cannot fully extract his labors.
    I'm sure geographic and societal differences between European and African/Asian territories will have to be interrogated for their influence as well.
    Vitiate Man.

    History repeats the old conceits
    The glib replies, the same defeats


    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 

  16. #16
    Headless Senior Member Pannonian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    7,579

    Default Re: Was the Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich Worth It?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strike For The South View Post
    Heydrich living may have spared a few thousand men and a few dozen man hours from anti partisan activity. The ability of one man to affect institutions are overblown in this thread.

    Mers-El-Kebir , Dontiz being denied his U boats, and repulsion from Moscow are the watershed moments in the second World War. I suppose you could add midway but probably not.
    The appointment of Churchill as PM is probably the UK's equivalent of the repulsion from Moscow; stiffened the country's resolve sufficiently to drag out the war and allow the US to get properly involved. Churchill the individual was also more conducive to making the UK-US alliance work than probably any other UK politician. Any other leader may not have managed to get US public opinion sufficiently onside to allow Roosevelt to wholeheartedly throw the US behind a Germany-first strategy.

    Thinking about it, the early stages of WW2 may have been one of those rare periods in modern history where the personalities of the national leaders may have had a genuine effect on how events unfolded. Without Hitler, would there have been war? Without Stalin, would the USSR have been so ruthlessly efficient in its war direction? Without Churchill, would the UK have managed to hold out for and hang on to their allies? Perhaps only the US, separated by an ocean, had the luxury of choosing its course. That said, were there any other candidates for the presidency who were remotely as Anglophilic as Roosevelt? Among the chiefs of staff, only Marshall could be described as so; every other chief ranged from disdainful of to utterly hating the British. Choosing to fight the Germans wasn't a foregone conclusion.
    Last edited by Pannonian; 10-27-2018 at 01:10.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO