Herschel Grynszpan   was born in Hanover, Germany in 1919. As German Jews the family suffered persecution after Adolf Hitler gained power in 1933.

In 1936 Grynszpan moved to France to live with with his uncle and aunt living in Paris. On 7th November, 1938, Grynszpan decided to assassinate the German Ambassador in France. It appears that this was an act of revenge for the expulsion of around 15,000 Polish Jews, including his own family, who in October 1938, had been forced across the Silesian border at Zbaszyn.

However, after waiting outside for some time for the German Ambassador he shot Ernst vom Rath , a minor official at the embassy. He died two days later. Rath was in fact an anti-Nazi and was under investigation by the Gestapo at the time. Adolf Hitler himself sent his two best doctors, personal physician Karl Brandt  and surgeon Georg Magnus, to Paris to try to save vom Rath’s life. Hitler promoted vom Rath, who had been a junior officer at the embassy, to the rank of Legal Consul, First Class (Gesandtschaftsrat I. Klasse) hours before vom Rath’s death


Why Grynszpan, who had fled from Germany to France in 1936, chose vom Rath is not known with certainty, although he was upset over news that his family was being deported from Germany back to Poland. As far as it can be established, Grynszpan and Rath did not know each other. Most accounts of the shooting state that Grynszpan did not ask for vom Rath by name but only asked to speak to a member of the diplomatic staff. The records were falsified in 1942, and the Germans spread propaganda that Grynszpan’s intention was to kill the ambassador, Count Johannes von Welczeck.

As a result of the assassination the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) organized Crystal Night on the night of 9th-10th November, 1938. During Crystal Night over 7,500 Jewish shops were destroyed and 400 synagogues were burnt down.    Ninety-one Jews were killed and an estimated 20,000 were sent to concentration camps.

When the German Army invaded France in 1940 Grynszpan was handed over to the Gestapo   . It is not known exactly what happened to Grynszpan. One report said he was executed in 1940 while Fritz Dahms, an official in the German Foreign Office, revealed that he had died just before the end of the World War II.

In 1957 an article written by the German historian, Helmut Heimer, claimed that he was sent to Sachsenhausen Prison and survived the war. Another article by Egon Larsen published two years later argued that Grynszpan had changed his name and was living in Paris and working as a garage mechanic.

Karl Brandt was ganged in the Landsberg prison, age 44 on 12-06-1948 and Count Johannes von Welczeck. died old age 94 on 11-10-1972 in Marbella, Spain.

Italian invasion of France.


The Italian invasion of France, also called the Battle of the Alps (10–25 June 1940), was the first major Italian engagement of World War II and the last major engagement of the Battle of France.

Italy’s entry into the war widened its scope considerably in Africa and theMediterranean Sea. The goal of the Italian leader, Benito Mussolini, was the elimination of Anglo-French domination in the Mediterranean, the reclamation of historically Italian territory (so-called Italia irredenta) and the expansion of Italian influence over the Balkans and in Africa. France and Britain endeavoured throughout the 1930s to draw Mussolini away from an alliance with Germany, but Germany’s rapid successes in the early phase of the war made Italian intervention on the German side inevitable by May 1940.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor hitler mussolini

Italy declared war on France and Britain on the evening of 10 June, to take effect just after midnight Afbeeldingsresultaat voor war declaring mussolini. The two sides exchanged air raids on the first day of war, but little transpired on the Alpine front Battaglione alpini Val Dora sul colle della Pelouse giugno 1940.jpg, since both France and Italy had adopted a defensive posture along their frontier. There was some skirmishing between patrols and the French forts of the Ligne Alpine exchanged fire with their Italian counterparts of the Vallo Alpino. On 17 June, France announced that it would seek an armistice with Germany. On 21 June, with a Franco-German armistice about to be signed Afbeeldingsresultaat voor french german armistice, the Italians launched a general offensive all along the Alpine front, with the main attack in the northern sector and a secondary advance along the coast. They penetrated a few kilometres into French territory against strong resistance. The offensive stalled before its primary objectives could be attained, the coastal town of Menton being the most significant conquest.

On the evening of 24 June, an armistice was signed at Rome . It came into effect just after midnight on 25 June, at the same time as the armistice with Germany (signed 22 June). Italy was allowed to occupy the territory it had captured in the brief fighting, a demilitarised zone was created on the French side of the border, Italian economic control was extended into southeast France up to the river Rhone and Italy obtained certain rights and concessions in certain of France’s colonies. An armistice control commission, the Commissione Italiana d’Ármistizio con la Francia (CIAF), was set up in Turin to oversee France’s compliance.

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