Let’s talk about Reinhardt Heydrich, who was a high ranking Nazi Official. He was Obergruppenfuhrer of the SS, and the head of the Reich Main Security Office which put him in charge of the Gestapo as well. So he was pretty highly placed in the Nazi Hierarchy, and one of Hitler’s favorites. He is one of the Key Planners and Central Figures in the Nazi “Final Solution.” He was also, apparently, a talented violinist, just to give the devil his due. His violin playing really wasn’t a factor as British Intelligence planned “Operation Anthropoid,” a planned assassination of Heydrich which was carried out on this day in 1942. Heydrich had been sent to Prague to increase production of Czech armaments and vehicles for the German War Effort. British Intelligence managed to train and place two expatriate Czech Soldiers into Prague, and on the Morning of May 27, the pair confronted him in his cool convertible Mercedes Benz on the route his driver took every day. After stopping the car, the assassins threw a Modified Tank Grenade at the Mercedes. The explosion ripped apart the front end, and Heydrich was hit by shrapnel…something he didn’t notice at first, as he hopped out of the car and chased the assassins. He collapsed in the attempt and was rushed to a hospital. He underwent surgery, and was expected to survive, but septicemia…or something…set in, and Heydrich died painfully about a week later. Some historians suspect the modified Grenade was enhanced with Botulinum toxin. It was a short return visit to Czechoslovakia for the assassins: One was killed in a gun battle, the other attempted suicide but was caught by the Nazis and hanged. Hitler ordered the SS to Wade In Blood as they sought revenge for the assassination…they even went so far as to arrest 13 thousand people and wipe out the entire village of Lidice in retribution. The retributions were such that the allies decided against future assassination attempts…except for one more try at taking out Hitler two years later, a failed attempt called Operation Foxley. Reinhardt Heydrich was one of the darkest villains of the Third Reich. The reason he’s less well known than some was that he was stopped before he became even more infamous. A success, but an expensive one.
Album Notes: Grateful Acknowledgments to Mike Koenig, and Drum 8. “Evil March” Written and Performed by Kevin McLeod, Licensed under Creative Commons “Attribution 3.0″ http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ and used here by permission, and with appreciation and thanks.