Context: Fritz Hartnagel survives Stalingrad. It is World War II’s most horrific battle. He is recuperating from near starvation and amputations from severe frostbite at a field hospital in occupied Poland. Sophie is studying Nazi approved philosophy with her brother and his friends at the University of Munich. They have kept their resistance activities, started…

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With You There Is Light Sophie Scholl Alexandra Lehmann

Translated here into English for the first time with permission of S. Fischer Verlag, Frankfurt. To Sophie Scholl from Fritz Hartnagel, December 1942. Yesterday, my dear Sophie, as the Russians fired on our position with heavy artillery and the sirens went berserk, a little bird suddenly sat at the edge of our trench and peeped…

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November 17, 2017. Books & Books in Grand Cayman, B.V.I.                     “Is today’s information overload the opposite problem of censorship?” The interested diverse crowd at my reading in November wanted to talk about Nazi Germany’s censorship and elimination of personal freedoms. We were discussing the Party’s control…

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white-soe-installation

New Munich Student Resistance Installation (LMU, 2/17)     Munich, June 10, 2017. Re-visiting the new installation at the University of Munich (LMU) furthered my commitment to sharing the history of the White Rose student resistance movement. During World War II, siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, and Alexander Schmorell, began active opposition against Hitler and the Nazi Party.…

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Herbert Gustav Lehmann German military document World War II

An Often Asked Question Gets Answered Again The last question came from a very bright student at the end of the fifth class I taught at my alma mater on “Sophie Scholl and the German Resistance against Hitler.” She asked, “Was Scholl’s boyfriend, Fritz Hartnagel, a Captain in the Wehrmacht, a Nazi?” During the last…

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the-wisdom-daily-book-review

When Hitler came to power in the early 1930’s, Nazi ideology pervaded the German education system, leading to the indoctrination of an entire generation. When war enveloped Europe less than a decade later, that same generation trailed their maniacal leader into the abyss. A small group of Munich students, however, refused to follow. Instead, they…

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belgium-resists

              “With You There Is Light” contains translated excerpts from Fritz Hartnagel’s letters to Sophie Scholl. In this important historical document, Fritz informs Sophie about Belgium resistance. Antwerp, May 18, 1940. My dear Sophie, […] Yesterday I had enormous luck, if one can speak of luck and not of Providence. I was with…

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Fritz Hartnagel was a part of Hitler’s Army. He was going to have to fight in this so-called Blitzkrieg. What could she do? Sophie Scholl took out her pen from her knapsack and began to write. She could always count on writing when the truth required clarification.             Dear Fritz, Sophie pressed down hard on…

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