Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

June 23, 2017

Hitler and the Lone Wolf Assassin

Filed under: Counterpunch,Fascism,Film — louisproyect @ 7:14 pm


Before the opening titles roll for “13 Minutes”, we see a kneeling man in a suit and tie holding a flashlight in his mouth crouched down in some kind of tunnel, looking for all the world like an engineer fixing a faulty electrical circuit. We soon learn that he had gained access to the inside of a hollow pillar at the rear of the stage in the Bürgerbräukeller in Munich, Germany where Adolf Hitler launched his abortive “beer hall putsch” in 1923. The man was connecting a detonator to a massive pile of explosives and his goal was to blow Hitler to kingdom come during his speech later that day commemorating the putsch.

The date is November 8, 1939 and Georg Elser is a factory worker from an impoverished background preparing to do what the students of the White Rose group and the Operation Valkyrie Generals failed to do: overthrow the Nazi system. My first reaction to the film was to see it as a more nuanced and realistic version of Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” but was stunned to discover after consulting Wikipedia 10 minutes into the film that it was based on historical events. George Elser was a real person and the attempt on Hitler’s life did take place. The führer managed to avoid being killed only because transportation snafus made it necessary for him to leave Bürgerbräukeller 13 minutes before the bomb went off.

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  1. I like your ending about working class unity. I come from the CP tradition but I find we have much in common. My father helped found CP in early 1920s. I grew up hating Trotzkyists, but in many ways I find common ground with you and other flexible thinkers.

    Comment by Noyma Appelbaum (I am a male.) much experience in heavy industry. Now 89 years old, writing from ICU, recovering from pneumonia — June 23, 2017 @ 10:59 pm

  2. I was hoping that you would have an enlightening blog, but the fact you did not know about this attempt on Hitlers life was real just tells me you stumble around the Internet looking for tidbits and then check Wiki for facts just tells me that ,,, you fill in the blank


    Comment by Bob — June 23, 2017 @ 11:02 pm

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