Red Orchestra (espionage)
The Red Orchestra or the Red Chapel as it was known in Germany, was the name given by the Gestapo to anti-Nazi resistance workers during World War II. These included friends of Harro Schulze-Boysen and Arvid Harnack in Berlin, as well as groups working independently of these intelligence groups, working in Paris and Brussels, that were built up on behalf of Leopold Trepper on behalf of the Soviet Main Directorate of State Security. Contrary to legend, the Red Orchestra was neither directed by Soviet communists nor under a single leadership but a network of groups and individuals operating independently. To date, about 400 members are known by name, they printed illegal leaflets hoping to incite civil disobedience, helped Jews and opposition escape the regime, documented the crimes of the Nazi regime and forwarded military intelligence to the Allies. To this day, the public perception of the "Red Orchestra" is characterized by the transfigurations of the post-war years and the Cold War. For a long time after World War II, only parts of the German resistance to Nazism had been known to the public within Germany and the world at large.
This included the groups that took part in the White Rose resistance groups. In the 1970s there was a growing interest in the various forms of opposition. However, no group was so systematically misinformed, recognised as little, as the resistance groups around Arvid Harnack and Harro Schulze-Boysen. In a number of publications, the groups that these two people represented were seen as traitors and spies. An example of these was Kennwort: Direktor. Höhne based his book on the investigation by the Lüneburg Public Prosecutor's Office against the General Judge of the Luftwaffe Manfred Roeder, involved in the Harnack and Schulze-Boysen cases during World War II and who contributed decisively to the formation of the legend, that survived for much of the Cold War period. In his book Höhne reports from former Gestapo and Reich war court individuals who had a conflict of interest and were intent in defaming the groups attached to Harnack and Schulze-Boysen with accusations of treason; the perpetuation of the defamation from the 1940 to the 1970s that started with the Gestapo, was incorporated by the Lüneburg Public Prosecutor's Office and evaluated as a journalistic process that can be seen by the 1968 trial of far-right holocaust denier Manfred Roeder by the German lawyer Robert Kempner.
The Frankfurt public prosecutors office, which prosecuted the case against Roeder, based its investigation on procedure case number "1 Js 16/49", the trial case number defined by the Lüneburg Public Prosecutor's Office. The whole process propagated the Gestapo ideas of the Red Orchestra and this was promulgated in the report of the public prosecutor's office which stated:... To these two men and their wives, a group of political supporters of different characters and of different backgrounds gathered over the course of time, they were united in their advocacy of communism. Until the outbreak of the war with the Soviet Union, the focus of their work was on domestic politics. After that, he shifted more to the territory of treason and espionage in favor of the Soviet Union. At the beginning of 1942, the Schulze-Boysen Group was involved in the widespread network of the Soviet intelligence service in Western Europe... The Schulze-Boysen group was first and foremost an espionage organization for the Soviet Union...
From the perspective of the German Democratic Republic the Red Orchestra were honoured as anti-fascist resistance fighters and indeed received posthumous orders in 1969. However, the most comprehensive collection biographies that exist are from the GDR, represent their point of view. In the 1980s, the GDR historian Heinrich Scheel, who at the time was vice president of the East German Academy of Sciences and, part of the anti-Nazi Tegeler group that included Hans Coppi, Hermann Natterodt and Hans Lautenschlager from 1933, conducted research into the Rote Kapelle and produced a paper which took a more nuanced view of the Rote Kapelle and discovered the work, done to defame them. Heinrich Scheel's work enabled a reevaluation of the Rote Kapelle, but it was not until 2009 that the German Bundestag overturned the judgments of the National Socialist judiciary for "treason" and rehabilitated the members of the Red Chapel; the term "Red Orchestra" was invented by the Reichssicherheitshauptamt, the counter-espionage part of the Schutzstaffel, which referred to resistance radio operators as "pianists", their transmitters as "pianos", their supervisors as "conductors".
The Red Orchestra was a collective name, used by the Gestapo, the German secret police for the purpose of identification, the Funkabwehr, the German radio counterintelligence organisation. The Funkabwehr used the name to identify the Paris and Brussels groups that were opponents of the Nazis, that appeared after the invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941. Only after the Abwehr had decrypted radio messages in August 1942, in which German names appeared, did the Gestapo start to arrest and imprison them, their friends and relatives. In 2002, the German filmmaker Stefan Roloff, whose father was a member of one of the Red Orchestra groups, wrote: Due to their contact with the Soviets, the Brussels and Berlin groups were grouped by the Counterespionage and the Gestapo under the misleading name Red Chapel. A radio operator tapping Morse code marks with his fingers was a pianist in the intelligence language. A group of "pianists" formed a "chapel", since
Nazism and race
Nazism and race concerns the Nazi Party's adoption and further development of several hypotheses concerning their concept of race. Classifications of human races were made and various measurements of population samples were carried out during the 1930s; the Nazis claimed to observe scientifically a strict hierarchy of the human race. Hitler's view towards race and people can be found throughout Mein Kampf but more in chapter 11 "Nation and Race"; the standard-issue propaganda text issued to members of the Hitler Youth contained a chapter on "the race of the German people" that cited the works of Hans F. K. Günther; the text seems to address the European races in descending orders on the Nazi hierarchy, with the Nordic race first, the Western race second, Dinarics third, Eastern people fourth, East Baltics last. Hitler made references to an "Aryan Race" founding a superior type of humanity; the purest stock of Aryans according to Nazi ideology was the Nordic people of Germany, Denmark, The Netherlands and Norway.
The Nazis defined Nordics as being identified by tall stature, long faces, prominent chins and straight noses with a low bridge, lean builds, doliocephalic skulls, straight light hair, light eyes, fair skin. The Nazis claimed that Germanic people represented a southern branch of the Aryan-Nordic population; the Nazis did not consider all Germans to be of the Nordic type, stated that Germany had a large "Alpine" population. Hitler and Nazi racial theorist Hans F. K. Günther framed this as an issue to be corrected through selective breeding for "Nordic" traits. Hitler Youth propaganda emphasized the "Nordic" nature of Germans, with the text issued to all Hitler Youth members stating: "the principal ingredient of our people is the Nordic race; that is not to say. All of the aforementioned races appear in mixtures in all parts of our fatherland; the circumstance, that the great part of our people is of Nordic descent justifies us taking a Nordic standpoint when evaluating our character and spirit, bodily structure, physical beauty."
As Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, Finland participated in the invasion to recover the territories it was forced to cede to the USSR after the Moscow Peace Treaty which ended the Winter War between the Finns and the Soviets. Military success resulted in the Finnish occupation of Eastern Karelia; because of their Finno-Ugric heritage, the Finns were classified by Nazi racial experts as a people unrelated to the other Nordic countries, in spite of a long history of political unity with Sweden. As a result, the Swedish-speaking minority of Finland was favoured at first over Finnish speakers for recruitment into the Finnish Volunteer Battalion of the Waffen-SS because they were categorically considered part of the "Nordic race". Owing to Finland's substantial military contribution on the northern flank of the Eastern Front of World War II, Hitler decreed in November 1942 that "from now on Finland and the Finnish people be treated and designated as a Nordic state and a Nordic people", which he considered one of the highest compliments that the Nazi government could bestow upon another country.
According to Gunther, the purest Nordic regions were Scandinavia and northern Germany Norway and Sweden, specifying: "We may take the Swedish blood to be over 80 per cent Nordic, the Norwegian blood about 80 per cent." Britain and southern Germany by contrast were not considered Nordic. Germany was said to be 55% Nordic, the rest Alpine, Dinaric, or East Baltic. On the British Isles, Gunther stated: "we may adopt the following racial proportions for these islands: Nordic blood, 60 percent, he added that "The Nordic strain in Germany seems to be rather more distributed over the whole people than in England, where it seems to belong far more to the upper classes." Hitler echoed this sentiment, referring to the English lower classes as "racially inferior." Hitler viewed the French as close to the Germans racially, but not quite their peers. He said of their racial character: "France remains hostile to us, she contains, in addition to her Nordic blood, a blood that will always be foreign to us." Gunther echoed this sentiment, saying that the French were predominantly Alpine and Mediterranean rather than Nordic, but that a heavy Nordic strain was still present.
He characterized the French as possessing the following racial proportions: Nordic, 25%. These types were said to be most prevalent in north and southern France respectively. Hitler planned to remove a large portion of the French population to make way for German settlement; the Zone interdite of eastern France was set aside and planned to be made part of the German Reich after the rest of France was subdued. The French residents of the zone, some 7 million people accounting for nearly 20% of the French population at the time, were to be deported, the land occupied by at least a million German settlers; the plan was either postponed or abandoned after Operation Barbarossa in favor of expediting the settlement of the east instead, was never put into place owing to the German defeat in the Second World War. The Nazis regarded central/southern Italians, Portuguese, southern French, Greeks as sharing a similar origin with Germans from ancient Indo-Aryan migration, but being purely
Nazi Germany is the common English name for Germany between 1933 and 1945, when Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party controlled the country through a dictatorship. Under Hitler's rule, Germany was transformed into a totalitarian state that controlled nearly all aspects of life via the Gleichschaltung legal process; the official name of the state was Deutsches Reich until 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich from 1943 to 1945. Nazi Germany is known as the Third Reich, meaning "Third Realm" or "Third Empire", the first two being the Holy Roman Empire and the German Empire; the Nazi regime ended. Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany by the President of the Weimar Republic, Paul von Hindenburg, on 30 January 1933; the NSDAP began to eliminate all political opposition and consolidate its power. Hindenburg died on 2 August 1934 and Hitler became dictator of Germany by merging the offices and powers of the Chancellery and Presidency. A national referendum held 19 August 1934 confirmed Hitler as sole Führer of Germany.
All power was centralised in Hitler's person and his word became the highest law. The government was not a coordinated, co-operating body, but a collection of factions struggling for power and Hitler's favour. In the midst of the Great Depression, the Nazis restored economic stability and ended mass unemployment using heavy military spending and a mixed economy. Extensive public works were undertaken, including the construction of Autobahnen; the return to economic stability boosted the regime's popularity. Racism antisemitism, was a central feature of the regime; the Germanic peoples were considered by the Nazis to be the master race, the purest branch of the Aryan race. Discrimination and persecution against Jews and Romani people began in earnest after the seizure of power; the first concentration camps were established in March 1933. Jews and others deemed undesirable were imprisoned, liberals and communists were killed, imprisoned, or exiled. Christian churches and citizens that opposed Hitler's rule were oppressed, many leaders imprisoned.
Education focused on racial biology, population policy, fitness for military service. Career and educational opportunities for women were curtailed. Recreation and tourism were organised via the Strength Through Joy program, the 1936 Summer Olympics showcased Germany on the international stage. Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels made effective use of film, mass rallies, Hitler's hypnotic oratory to influence public opinion; the government controlled artistic expression, promoting specific art forms and banning or discouraging others. The Nazi regime dominated neighbours through military threats in the years leading up to war. Nazi Germany made aggressive territorial demands, threatening war if these were not met, it seized Austria and Czechoslovakia in 1938 and 1939. Germany signed a non-aggression pact with the USSR, invaded Poland on 1 September 1939, launching World War II in Europe. By early 1941, Germany controlled much of Europe. Reichskommissariats took control of conquered areas and a German administration was established in the remainder of Poland.
Germany exploited labour of both its occupied territories and its allies. In the Holocaust, millions of Jews and other peoples deemed undesirable by the state were imprisoned, murdered in Nazi concentration camps and extermination camps, or shot. While the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 was successful, the Soviet resurgence and entry of the US into the war meant the Wehrmacht lost the initiative on the Eastern Front in 1943 and by late 1944 had been pushed back to the pre-1939 border. Large-scale aerial bombing of Germany escalated in 1944 and the Axis powers were driven back in Eastern and Southern Europe. After the Allied invasion of France, Germany was conquered by the Soviet Union from the east and the other Allies from the west, capitulated in May 1945. Hitler's refusal to admit defeat led to massive destruction of German infrastructure and additional war-related deaths in the closing months of the war; the victorious Allies initiated a policy of denazification and put many of the surviving Nazi leadership on trial for war crimes at the Nuremberg trials.
The official name of the state was Deutsches Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich from 1943 to 1945, while common English terms are "Nazi Germany" and "Third Reich". The latter, adopted by Nazi propaganda as Drittes Reich, was first used in Das Dritte Reich, a 1923 book by Arthur Moeller van den Bruck; the book counted the Holy Roman Empire as the German Empire as the second. Germany was known as the Weimar Republic during the years 1919 to 1933, it was a republic with a semi-presidential system. The Weimar Republic faced numerous problems, including hyperinflation, political extremism, contentious relationships with the Allied victors of World War I, a series of failed attempts at coalition government by divided political parties. Severe setbacks to the German economy began after World War I ended because of reparations payments required under the 1919 Treaty of Versailles; the government printed money to make the payments and to repay the country's war debt, but the resulting hyperinflation led to inflated prices for consumer goods, economic chaos, food riots.
When the government defaulted on their reparations payments in January 1923, French troops occupied German industrial areas along the Ruhr and widespread civil unrest followed. The National Socialist German Workers' Party (National
Frankfurt is a metropolis and the largest city of the German federal state of Hesse, its 746,878 inhabitants make it the fifth-largest city of Germany after Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne. On the River Main, it forms a continuous conurbation with the neighbouring city of Offenbach am Main, its urban area has a population of 2.3 million. The city is at the centre of the larger Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region, which has a population of 5.5 million and is Germany's second-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr Region. Since the enlargement of the European Union in 2013, the geographic centre of the EU is about 40 km to the east of Frankfurt's central business district. Like France and Franconia, the city is named after the Franks. Frankfurt is the largest city in the Rhine Franconian dialect area. Frankfurt was a city state, the Free City of Frankfurt, for nearly five centuries, was one of the most important cities of the Holy Roman Empire, as a site of imperial coronations, it has been part of the federal state of Hesse since 1945.
A quarter of the population are foreign nationals, including many expatriates. Frankfurt is an alpha world city and a global hub for commerce, education and transportation, it is the site of many European corporate headquarters. Frankfurt Airport is among the world's busiest. Frankfurt is the major financial centre of the European continent, with the headquarters of the European Central Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, Frankfurt Stock Exchange, Deutsche Bank, DZ Bank, KfW, several cloud and fintech startups and other institutes. Automotive and research, consulting and creative industries complement the economic base. Frankfurt's DE-CIX is the world's largest internet exchange point. Messe Frankfurt is one of the world's largest trade fairs. Major fairs include the Frankfurt Motor Show, the world's largest motor show, the Music Fair, the Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest book fair. Frankfurt is home to influential educational institutions, including the Goethe University, the UAS, the FUMPA, graduate schools like the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management.
Its renowned cultural venues include the concert hall Alte Oper, Europe's largest English theatre and many museums. Frankfurt's skyline is shaped by some of Europe's tallest skyscrapers; the city is characterised by various green areas and parks, including the central Wallanlagen, the City Forest and two major botanical gardens, the Palmengarten and the University's Botanical Garden. Important is the Frankfurt Zoo. In electronic music, Frankfurt has been a pioneering city since the 1980s, with renowned DJs including Sven Väth, Marc Trauner, Scot Project, Kai Tracid, the clubs Dorian Gray, U60311, Omen and Cocoon. In sports, the city is known as the home of the top tier football club Eintracht Frankfurt, the Löwen Frankfurt ice hockey team, the basketball club Frankfurt Skyliners, the Frankfurt Marathon and the venue of Ironman Germany. Frankfurt is the largest financial centre in continental Europe, it is home to the European Central Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, Frankfurt Stock Exchange and several large commercial banks.
The Frankfurt Stock Exchange is one of the world's largest stock exchanges by market capitalization and accounts for more than 90 percent of the turnover in the German market. In 2010, 63 national and 152 international banks had their registered offices in Frankfurt, including Germany's major banks, notably Deutsche Bank, DZ Bank, KfW and Commerzbank, as well as 41 representative offices of international banks. Frankfurt is considered a global city. Among global cities it was ranked 10th by the Global Power City Index 2011 and 11th by the Global City Competitiveness Index 2012. Among financial centres it was ranked 8th by the International Financial Centers Development Index 2013 and 9th by the Global Financial Centres Index 2013, its central location within Germany and Europe makes Frankfurt a major air and road transport hub. Frankfurt Airport is one of the world's busiest international airports by passenger traffic and the main hub for Germany's flag carrier Lufthansa. Frankfurt Central Station is one of the largest rail stations in Europe and the busiest junction operated by Deutsche Bahn, the German national railway company, with 342 trains a day to domestic and European destinations.
Frankfurter Kreuz, the Autobahn interchange close to the airport, is the most used interchange in the EU, used by 320,000 cars daily. In 2011 human-resource-consulting firm Mercer ranked Frankfurt as seventh in its annual'Quality of Living' survey of cities around the world. According to The Economist cost-of-living survey, Frankfurt is Germany's most expensive city and the world's 10th most expensive. Frankfurt has many high-rise buildings in the city centre, forming the Frankfurt skyline, it is one of the few cities in the European Union to have such a skyline and because of it Germans sometimes refer to Frankfurt as Mainhattan, a portmanteau of the local Main River and Manhattan. The other well known and obvious nickname is Bankfurt. Before World War II the city was globally noted for its unique old town with timber-framed buildings, the largest timber-framed old town in Europe; the Römer area was rebuilt and is popular with visitors and for eve
The Workers' and Peasants' Red Army shortened to Red Army was the army and the air force of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, after 1922, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The army was established after the 1917 October Revolution; the Bolsheviks raised an army to oppose the military confederations of their adversaries during the Russian Civil War. Beginning in February 1946, the Red Army, along with the Soviet Navy, embodied the main component of the Soviet Armed Forces; the Red Army provided the largest land force in the Allied victory in the European theatre of World War II, its invasion of Manchuria assisted the unconditional surrender of Imperial Japan. During operations on the Eastern Front, it accounted for 75–80% of casualties the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS suffered during the war and captured the Nazi German capital, Berlin. In September 1917, Vladimir Lenin wrote: "There is only one way to prevent the restoration of the police, and, to create a people's militia and to fuse it with the army."
At the time, the Imperial Russian Army had started to collapse. 23% of the male population of the Russian Empire were mobilized. The Tsarist general Nikolay Dukhonin estimated that there had been 2 million deserters, 1.8 million dead, 5 million wounded and 2 million prisoners. He estimated the remaining troops as numbering 10 million. While the Imperial Russian Army was being taken apart, "it became apparent that the rag-tag Red Guard units and elements of the imperial army who had gone over the side of the Bolsheviks were quite inadequate to the task of defending the new government against external foes." Therefore, the Council of People's Commissars decided to form the Red Army on 28 January 1918. They envisioned a body "formed from the class-conscious and best elements of the working classes." All citizens of the Russian republic aged 18 or older were eligible. Its role being the defense "of the Soviet authority, the creation of a basis for the transformation of the standing army into a force deriving its strength from a nation in arms, furthermore, the creation of a basis for the support of the coming Socialist Revolution in Europe."
Enlistment was conditional upon "guarantees being given by a military or civil committee functioning within the territory of the Soviet Power, or by party or trade union committees or, in extreme cases, by two persons belonging to one of the above organizations." In the event of an entire unit wanting to join the Red Army, a "collective guarantee and the affirmative vote of all its members would be necessary." Because the Red Army was composed of peasants, the families of those who served were guaranteed rations and assistance with farm work. Some peasants who remained at home yearned to join the Army. If they were turned away they would prepare care-packages. In some cases the money they earned would go towards tanks for the Army; the Council of People's Commissars appointed itself the supreme head of the Red Army, delegating command and administration of the army to the Commissariat for Military Affairs and the Special All-Russian College within this commissariat. Nikolai Krylenko was the supreme commander-in-chief, with Aleksandr Myasnikyan as deputy.
Nikolai Podvoisky became the commissar for Pavel Dybenko, commissar for the fleet. Proshyan, Steinberg were specified as people's commissars as well as Vladimir Bonch-Bruyevich from the Bureau of Commissars. At a joint meeting of Bolsheviks and Left Socialist-Revolutionaries, held on 22 February 1918, Krylenko remarked: "We have no army; the demoralized soldiers are fleeing, panic-stricken, as soon as they see a German helmet appear on the horizon, abandoning their artillery and all war material to the triumphantly advancing enemy. The Red Guard units are brushed aside like flies. We have no power to stay the enemy; the Russian Civil War occurred in three periods: October 1917 – November 1918: From the Bolshevik Revolution to the First World War Armistice, developed from the Bolshevik government's nationalization of traditional Cossack lands in November 1917. This provoked the insurrection of General Alexey Maximovich Kaledin's Volunteer Army in the River Don region; the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk aggravated Russian internal politics.
The situation encouraged direct Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War, in which twelve foreign countries supported anti-Bolshevik militias. A series of engagements resulted, amongst others, the Czechoslovak Legion, the Polish 5th Rifle Division, the pro-Bolshevik Red Latvian Riflemen. January 1919 – November 1919: Initially the White armies advanced: from the south, under General Anton Denikin; the Whites defeated the Red Army on each front. Leon Trotsky reformed and counterattacked: the Red Army repelled Admiral Kolchak's army in June, the armies of General Denikin and General Yudenich in October. By mid-Nove
Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a German pastor, anti-Nazi dissident, key founding member of the Confessing Church. His writings on Christianity's role in the secular world have become influential, his book The Cost of Discipleship has been described as a modern classic. Apart from his theological writings, Bonhoeffer was known for his staunch resistance to Nazi dictatorship, including vocal opposition to Hitler's euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews, he was arrested in April 1943 by the Gestapo and imprisoned at Tegel prison for one and a half years. He was transferred to a Nazi concentration camp. After being accused of being associated with the July 20 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, he was tried, along with other accused plotters, including former members of the Abwehr, executed by hanging on 9 April 1945 as the Nazi regime was collapsing. Bonhoeffer was born on 4 February 1906 in Germany into a large family. In addition to his other siblings, Dietrich had a twin sister, Sabine Bonhoeffer Leibholz: he and Sabine were the sixth and seventh children out of eight.
His father was psychiatrist and neurologist Karl Bonhoeffer, noted for his criticism of Sigmund Freud, his mother Paula Bonhoeffer, née von Hase, was a teacher and the granddaughter of Protestant theologian Karl von Hase and painter Stanislaus Kalckreuth. His oldest brother Karl Friedrich Bonhoeffer became a chemist, along with Paul Harteck, discovered the spin isomers of hydrogen in 1929. Walter Bonhoeffer, the second born of the Bonhoeffer family, was killed in action during World War I, when the twins were 12; the third Bonhoeffer child, was a lawyer until he was executed for his involvement in the 20 July plot. Both of Bonhoeffer's older sisters, Ursula Bonhoeffer Schleicher and Christel Bonhoeffer von Dohnanyi, married men who were executed by the Nazis. Christel survived. Sabine and their youngest sister Susanne Bonhoeffer Dress each married men, his cousin Karl-Günther von Hase was the German Ambassador to the United Kingdom from 1970 to 1977. Bonhoeffer completed his Staatsexamen, the equivalent of both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree, at the Protestant Faculty of Theology of the University of Tübingen.
He went on to complete his Doctor of Theology degree from Berlin University in 1927, graduating summa cum laude. Still too young to be ordained, at the age of twenty-four Bonhoeffer went to the United States in 1930 for postgraduate study and a teaching fellowship at New York City's Union Theological Seminary. Although Bonhoeffer found the American seminary not up to his exacting German standards, he had life-changing experiences and friendships, he studied under Reinhold Niebuhr and met Frank Fisher, a black fellow-seminarian who introduced him to Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, where Bonhoeffer taught Sunday school and formed a lifelong love for African-American spirituals, a collection of which he took back to Germany. He heard Adam Clayton Powell, Sr. preach the Gospel of Social Justice, became sensitive to not only social injustices experienced by minorities, but the ineptitude of the church to bring about integration. Bonhoeffer began to see things "from below" -- from the perspective of those.
He observed, "Here one can speak and hear about sin and grace and the love of God...the Black Christ is preached with rapturous passion and vision." Bonhoeffer referred to his impressions abroad as the point at which he "turned from phraseology to reality." He learned to drive an automobile, although he failed the driving test three times. After returning to Germany in 1931, Bonhoeffer became a lecturer in systematic theology at the University of Berlin. Interested in ecumenism, he was appointed by the World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches as one of its three European youth secretaries. At this time he seems to have undergone something of a personal conversion from being a theologian attracted to the intellectual side of Christianity to being a dedicated man of faith, resolved to carry out the teaching of Christ as he found it revealed in the Gospels. On 15 November 1931—at the age of 25—he was ordained at the Old-Prussian United St. Matthew's Church in Berlin.
Bonhoeffer's promising academic and ecclesiastical career was altered with the Nazi ascension to power on 30 January 1933. He was a determined opponent of the regime from its first days. Two days after Hitler was installed as Chancellor, Bonhoeffer delivered a radio address in which he attacked Hitler and warned Germany against slipping into an idolatrous cult of the Führer, who could well turn out to be Verführer, he was cut off the air in the middle of a sentence, though it is unclear whether the newly elected Nazi regime was responsible. In April 1933, Bonhoeffer raised the first voice for church resistance to Hitler's persecution of Jews, declaring that the church must not "bandage the victims under the wheel, but jam the spoke in the wheel itself."In November 1932, two months before the Nazi takeover, there had been an election for presbyters and synodals of the German Landeskirche. This election was marked by a struggle within the Old-Prussian Union Evangelical Church between the nationalistic German Christian movement and Young Reformers—a struggle which threatened to explode into schism.
In July 1933, Hitler unconstitutionally imposed new church e