Tag Archives: Germany

Supplemental: Der Sicherheitsdienst & other SS intelligence elements

In addition to the podcast recently released on Operation JEDBURGH titled “Meet the Jedburghs”, I wanted to touch on a group I brought up during the podcast.

In “Meet the Jedburghs” we talked a lot about how the allies exploited the juncture between military intelligence and sabotage during WWII. But the allies weren’t the only intelligence game in town. So who were they up against?

As a quick recap, we covered the Commando Order put in place by Hitler in 1944 – a direct violation of the Geneva convention of 1929.  We also talked a little bit about how Jedburgh operators caught under this order could be transferred to a Sicherheitsdienst (or SD) prison camp for interrogation.

The Sicherheitsdienst was what you could consider a sister organization to the infamous and brutal Gestapo. The purpose the SD served was as more of an intelligence gathering and investigative organization more than a capture/kill service like the Gestapo.

The SD became much more focused on the military aspect of intelligence consumption being used in support of offensive and defensive military operations rather than domestic and political crime enforcement in the way that the Gestapo was used for.

When it comes to Nazi intelligence gathering efforts, there were a number of very interesting dynamics that came into play. For example, there were a number of organizations that existed before the SD was created including the well known military intelligence organization called the Abwehr. Some of these organizations (Abwehr included) didn’t necessarily follow Adolf Hitler ideologically.

As a product of Hitler’s paranoia and the rampant nepotism in the Nazi system, Hitler created many redundant organizations with a more National Socialist focus (i.e. political enforcement) rather than practical military goals (again, like Abwehr).

These new organizations didn’t always get along great with each other, and the rivalry between the SD and Abwehr has been well recorded.

In the end, we remember the SD as an political intelligence organization tasked with locating political opponents to the National Socialist cause both inside and outside the borders of Germany.

Sources:

http://www.wzaponline.com/TheSS.pdf

http://avalon.law.yale.edu/imt/judorg.asp#gestapo

“Surprise, Kill and Vanish” – Meet The JEDBURGHs

Hello again, Geeks!

In today’s podcast, we get our hands a little dirty on World War 2 history. I know, I know. I used it as a point of pride to say that we tried to avoid covering too many topics in the WWII era, but I feel that this topic qualifies as quality content for Geeked on History ears.

Operation JEDBURGH was an old concept applied with new effectiveness. Gone were the days of security deep within the borders of a rapidly advancing front. When air troop transports can drop covert teams of saboteurs behind your lines, any illusions of safety evaporated like water on a hot summer day.

So nestle in with your choice of summer beverage (I’ll take a Bell’s Oberon, please!) and enjoy the podcast!

And don’t forget to stay geeky!

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The Berlin Airlift – A Geeked on History Interview

Hello again, geeks!

Welcome back to all the faithful listeners of the Geeked on history podcast. It’s been about a month, and to celebrate the return of the podcast I have a very special treat for all of you!

The Berlin Airlift was one of the very first major confrontations of the post-war era. Disagreements with how to handle the city of Berlin after Nazi control had been usurped put the gears of the cold war in motion in a renewed ideological conflict that would entangle almost every nation on Earth in one way or another.

The USSR had their sights set on control of the entire European continent, to include Germany and the city of Berlin, which was being shared by the four major allies in World War II.

The Soviet Union had constructed a scheme to supply all of Berlin exclusively by controlling the supply chain into the city from all sides. The United States; not planning on being cut out of the future of the capitol of Germany, decided to try a radical solution to circumventing Soviet ground control. Instead of sending in ground convoys, they would send convoys in the air.

In this week’s episode, I take a divergence from the normal format and interview a veteran I met (by way of absolute luck) to get his viewpoint on the conflict, and understand how the event worked from someone who was on the front lines.

I’d like to send a special thanks out to my veteran friend Bob Gload for taking the time out to sit down with me and discuss his experience and to my good friend Ryan Duff for taking on the task of editor for the podcast. Without either of these two incredible gentlemen, we wouldn’t be able to hear this very special podcast.

Enjoy!

 

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The Bizarre Murders at Hinterkaifeck Farmstead (Flash Edition)

For this week’s podcast, I wanted to explore a bit of the darker side of history. Historic mysteries are the best kinds of mysteries, and while Geeked on History tries to steer clear of history that is difficult to cite, exceptions will be made for certain topics.

In 1922, one of the most unsettling unsolved mass murders occurred in farm country, Germany. While the fact that the murders remain unsolved, the secrets of the murdered family contribute to this odd and creepy story.

Who would want to murder a family living on a farm in the middle of nowhere in Germany? What happened inside that barn? What horrors did 7-year-old Cazilia see when she walked into the pitch darkness of the old farm shed?

As promised, you can find a few of the crime-scene photos taken at the Hinterkaifeck farmstead attached to this post.

 

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