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Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Edelweiss Pirates

Hi Hussies,

I was doing lots of research on guns and warfare and it was playing havoc with my inner peace.
We know for centuries men (let's be honest, most of them were) have studied ways to kill each other off. There have been some military minded women in the past, but the ratio is about one Bodecia per 5 Alexanders, or Alexander want to be's.

As nature strives to remain in balance, I would like to take a look at the peacemakers. Rebels for peace able to look the tyrants in the face and say "no thank you." often, at the risk of their own lives.

One group is the Edelweiss Pirates. Before and during WW2 Hitler Youth grew to be the biggest influence on kids and teens. The Boy Scouts were disbanded and church youth groups were no allowed. After a while participation in the Hitler Youth was mandated by the State. Parents were forced to put their kids in the Hitler Youth.

From working class neighborhoods, youth grew tired of the oppression filtering into their daily lives and they began to rebel. The Edelweiss pirates was born. Their motto:
Eternal war on the Hitler Youth. Some protests were violent, with rocks being thrown at the youth or fights erupting when the odds were good. Some protests were limited to graffiti, while others would sabotage the factories or work places.

Most of the rebels were teens under age 18. Once, 18 young men were conscripted into the army.
Himmler, the head of the SS, became so concerned he ordered the Hitler Youth to be protected from the gangs roaming the streets. Ringleaders were put to death if caught. No one is sure how many rebels there were, but their fight for freedom should not fall to the footnotes of history. They should be remembered and honored for their courage.


Mary Ricksen said...

You learn something new every day. Thanks for the info. I never heard of them before.

Jen Childers said...

There was the white rose resistance as well. 3 people were beheaded, if you ever get a chance to see the movie about "sophie Scholl".

Lisbeth Eng said...

Thanks for sharing this little-known bit of history. (Yes, I've heard of the Edelweiss Pirates and the White Rose resistance group.)
If you're interested in German resistance to the Third Reich, you should see the movie Valkyrie. I've written a review on my blog "World War II...with a German accent." There's also the story of an even more obscure (not known at all unless you're really studied WWII history) German dissenter, Michael Kitzelmann. I recommend the book Conscience in Revolt by Annedore Leber, for more stories of Germans who defied the Nazis. Most of this history is unknown outside of Germany. Please visit my blog at BTW, I've just contracted with TWRP for my WWII romance, In the Arms of the Enemy.

Lisbeth Eng said...

By the way, Jen, I just read Kindertransport and loved it! I was happy to see Germans of that era portrayed in a positive light, especially in a romance novel. I hope you'll look for my TWRP book when it comes out. I've just signed the contract so it will be sometime next year, I suppose.

Jen Childers said...

get excited then comes promo...
I am so glad you liked the book.
I was inspired by a story my dad told me about the war.
I'm going to check out your blog now.
take care,