Talk:Ernst Kaltenbrunner

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  • I noticed how many a tired father first conferred with his wife on whether he might go for a jug of beer for supper that evening. I witnessed blows of fate when a cow became ill or a suckling pig perished, or the hay could not be brought in from the single meadow, because it would not stop raining. I saw too how the old father carefully prepared the planks for his coffin, and while sharpening his scythe asked his neighbor whether he also had dry planks. Death held no horror for them, and they made no fuss about births. Mothers were not long absent from the housework and were inexhaustible in their love for their many children. However much they seemed to have to divide it, each little child had all of their love.
    • About how people accepted their fate during hard times
  • Priests could not communicate any more to me than that which I could decipher for myself, and the picture of the world which I constructed for myself over the years does not stem from them.
    • About going to church and communicating with priests
  • I was thus appointed in the year 1943, two years before the conclusion of the war, into office. I would like to explain however that from the beginning, I happened to gain the responsibility for everything that was committed since my appointment as the boss of the Central Reich Security Office in the context of this office, when it came to injustice and so on, it fell under my actual line of duty, thus I knew from the procedures or had to know, the responsibility that I took over.
    • 4/11/46
  • My whole life long, I was ceaselessly in need of love and support, though I let this show as little as possible.
    • Memoir, page 40

Quotes about Kaltenbrunner (unsourced)[edit]

  • But how am I going to do that in regard to Kaltenbrunner? I shall then be completely at his mercy!
    • Heinrich Himmler, after Walter Schellenberg asked Himmler to receive Mr. Storsch, the representative of the Jewish World Congress, from Stockholm.
  • I know exactly what you've come here to say, Kaltenbrunner. But believe me, if I were not convinced that I'll build up Linz again with your help, as you see it in this model here, I would blow my brains out this very day. You must have faith. I still have ways and means of bringing the war to a victorious conclusion.
    • Adolf Hitler to Kaltenbrunner, in a secret meeting, March 23, 1945.
  • Few of those who stood on the defendants' dock at the trial of the major war criminals before the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg in 1945 to 1946 inspired more revulsion than Ernst Kaltenbrunner. ...This tall, hulking, scarfaced lawyer joined the National Socialist German Worker's Party (NSDAP) in 1930 and the elite Schutzstaffel, in 1931. ...Author Evelyn Waugh noted in his diary that "only Kaltenbrunner looked an obvious criminal."
    • Peter R. Black
  • Can he safely be categorized either as an "unhealthy" and "abnormal" individual or as the characteristic product of German society, a phenomenon so distant from the "solid American citizen" that he need be of no concern except as a historical or medical curiosity? Or must one go to the other extreme and search for "banal evil-doers" under every bed? I hope that a "humanization" of this callous creature of the Nazi system will, if not provide answers, at least provoke more thought on these questions.
    • Peter R. Black
  • Kaltenbrunner had discovered a world where he needed only to obey in order to become part of the historical progression of mankind. He had thus clarified his ideological commitment to the abstract, mythical German nation.
    • Peter R. Black
  • Kaltenbrunner's predecessor, Taus, did not exert enough authority over the Austrian SS. Kaltenbrunner, in addition to showing a fanatical loyalty to Himmler, apparently got the job done.
    • Peter R. Black
  • We have seen that Kaltenbrunner's right to practice law was revoked on account of his political activity. He was arrested several times and spent four months in an internment camp. Though such punishments were extraordinarily mild in comparison to those which Kaltenbrunner would mete out when his day arrived, they fed his hatred for the System.
    • Peter R. Black
  • No doubt Himmler brought in the scar-faced giant Kaltenbrunner because he was relatively unknown and outside the established circle of the Heydrichian chiefs.
    • Peter Padfield
  • From July 20, the scarred features of Kaltenbrunner had generally been visible at situation conferences. For the soldiers, especially those like Guderian and von Rundstedt, Supreme Commander in the west, who had toyed with treason earlier, probably even for Keitel and Jodl, Kaltenbrunner could only have been a dread reminder of the disgrace and agony of their fellows, whose judgment seemed to be confirmed with every passing day.
    • Peter Padfield
  • In his memoirs, Albert Speer told how, as he was about to turn in to the Bendlerstrasse, he was ordered to stop at the curb. Almost unrecognizable in the darkness were Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Gestapo chief, and Otto Skorzeny, surrounded by numerous subordinates. Speer expected the two to denounce the army, which they had always regarded as their rival, or at any rate to gloat over its defeat. But both replied in fairly indifferent tone that whatever happened was the army's business. "We don't want to get involved," they had said.
  • In some ways, Ernst Kaltenbrunner was the worst of the lot. He was a hulking ox of a man, tall and thin, with a thick neck and a scar running from the left side of his mouth to his nose. His long arms and oversized hands dangling from an elongated body gave him a kind of simian appearance. Even his Nazi colleagues took pleasure in referring to him as the "Gorilla." But many gorillas have the quality, at least, of being gentle animals. There was nothing soft about this ruthless killer.
    • Louis L. Snyder
  • While Hitler claimed that only a tiny clique was responsible, the investigations conducted by Kaltenbrunner resulted in 5,000 executions, and in addition thousands of others were sent to concentration camps. Reports of the interrogations were sent almost daily by Kaltenbrunner to Martin Bormann, head of the Party Chancellory, who was continuously at Hitler's side.
    • G. S. Graber, about the investigations behind the botched assassination attempt on Hitler's life.
  • For him, Hitler's Mein Kampf, with its strong denunciation of Jews, was a bible and Hitler a personal hero.
    • Louis L. Snyder
  • No one, especially a man like Ernst Kaltenbrunner could be allowed to discover the truth behind the work Schellenberg was secretly undertaking on Himmler's behalf, for its revelation to Hitler, in whatever form, would lead inevitably to Himmler's political ruin.
    • Martin A. Allen
  • Martin Bormann looked for an ally inside the SS aparatus and found him in the preposterous figure of Ernst Kaltenbrunner.
    • William Stevenson
  • There was the tiger, for instance. That was Kaltenbrunner, the terrible successor to Heydrich, the man of burning hate, the man with the sharp lawyer's brain. Of the quartet, Ernst Kaltenbrunner will haunt our memories the longest. He was the perfect Hollywood Nazi, lean-faced, cold-eyed, harsh-voiced, always under perfect control. A stubborn man and a strong man. As he sat there before us in the interrogation room in the Nuremberg Palace of Justice, we were fascinated by the deliberate way in which he clamped his lower lip over his upper lip as if to make sure that no word should escape him except when he wished to speak.
    • Dorothy Norman
  • If he [Himmler] needed a yes-man like Rudi Brandt, he could not expect to find one in this low intriguer, an excitable, self-indulgent, deceitful, and slightly daft Austrian, a man with scar-face and criminal's ears. It may be that Himmler chose Kaltenbrunner just because he knew him so little, but it is even more likely that he did so because he knew him so little, but it is even more likely that he did so because Kaltenbrunner, who had scarcely left Vienna since the Anschluss, knew no one 'in the office'.
    • Gerald Reitlinger
  • I've seldom had such a tough, callous ox to examine as this fellow Kaltenbrunner. A block of wood would be more sensitive. He's coarse, hard-bitten, probably only capable of thinking when he's drunk. Naturally, he'll be the right man for Hitler. I gave Himmler a report on all this, but he still seems to think he's the right man.
  • The policeman of July 11.
    • Arthur Seyss-Inquart. Testimony of Seyss-Inquart, about Kaltenbrunner's strong personality and conviction
  • Kaltenbrunner was a giant in stature, heavy in his movements -a real lumberjack. It was his square, heavy chin which expressed the character of the man. The thick neck, forming a straight line with the back of his head, increased the impression of rough-hewn coarseness. His small, penetrating, brown eyes were unpleasant; they looked at one fixedly, like the eyes of a viper seeking to petrify his prey. When one expected Kaltenbrunner to say something, his angular, wooden face would remain quite inexpressive; then, after several seconds of oppressive silence, he would bang the table and begin to speak. I always had the feeling that I was looking at the hands of an old gorilla. They were much too small, and the fingers were brown and discolored, for Kaltenbrunner smoked up to one hundred cigarettes a day.
  • Kaltenbrunner had great personal weaknesses; above all he drank, which in itself was enough to damn him in the eyes of Heydrich, who of course exploited this weakness in his usual effective way.
    • Walter Schellenberg
  • My having direct access to Himmler was the worst thorn in Kaltenbrunner's flesh. My limited interest in nicotine and alcohol was another thing which infuriated him. On several occasions, he tried to force me to exceed my quota of one or two glasses of wine. The more desperate the situation became toward the end of the war, the more Kaltenbrunner drank. I would find him in his office at eleven o'clock in the morning, having risen hardly more than half an hour earlier, his small eyes dull and empty. With the joviality of a drunkard he would reach under his desk, or bellow, "Orderly!" and pour out a glass of champagne or brandy for me. Then, when he became too obstreperous, I would take a nip or two to pacify him and pour the rest onto the carpet. Usually he did not know this, but once when he did, the veins in his face became so swollen with rage that I thought he was about to have a stroke.
    • Walter Schellenberg
  • I know of no limitation placed on Kaltenbrunner's authority as Chief of the Security Police and SD (RSHA). He promptly entered upon the duties of the office and assumed direct charge of the office and control over the Amts. He made it very clear in his official relations with all of us who were his Amt Chiefs that he was the head of the office exercising full executive powers and deciding all matters of policy. He permitted us to issue directives within the organization in our own names pursuant to fixed policies established by him, but all important matters had to be submitted to him whether he signed them or we signed them. He was constantly informed of all matters of importance which went on in the entire organization.
    • Walter Schellenberg
  • If you knew my personal feelings about Himmler and Kaltenbrunner, or rather the feelings between us, you would know that I was glad to be through with my own work with them. I didn't trust them, and they didn't trust me.
    • Walter Schellenberg to Leon Goldensohn, 3/12/46
  • Yes. Especially during the last phase of the war. Kaltenbrunner had more influence with Hitler - in practice, Kaltenbrunner was worse than Himmler.
    • Walter Schellenberg to Leon Goldensohn, after being asked if Kaltenbrunner was worse than Himmler, 3/12/46
  • Himmler was such a coward, he refused or was afraid to act because of Kaltenbrunner and Hitler.
    • Walter Schellenberg to Leon Goldensohn, 3/12/46
  • Toward the end, about April 28, 1945, I saved Ravensbrück camp and two thousand French, two thousand Polish, and two thousand Jewish women from death. I evacuated them to Sweden by the Red Cross toward the last of April 1945. There was an order in the camp that all inmates of the camp were to be shot when the front broke. Whose order? Kaltenbrunner!
    • Walter Schellenberg to Leon Goldensohn, 3/13/46
  • Himmler should not have left Kaltenbrunner and others to be responsible for his misdeeds.
  • I knew Seyss-Inquart, and it was clear to me from the very beginning that he should get the Chancellorship. Then I named Kaltenbrunner for Security. I did not know Kaltenbrunner, and that is one of the two instances where the Fuehrer himself lended a hand by giving me a few names.
    • Hermann Göring. Göring testified at Nuremberg that Hitler himself had added Kaltenbrunner's name to the suggested cabinet list.
  • I have no knowledge of Kaltenbrunner's becoming particularly prominent in the public eye. I heard the name Kaltenbrunner for the first time when he appeared as successor to General Canaris.
  • Indeed, it was not until after the assassination of Heydrich in 1942 and the appointment of the subservient Kaltenbrunner in his place as head of the RSHA, of which the Gestapo was a part, that Himmler felt that he had gained total control.
    • Charles Messenger
  • There was an excellent foreman in an iron foundry near Oranienburg. I spoke with him and told him I would get him out of the concentration camp. He is still around, and you can check with him about this story. I personally wrote to Kaltenbrunner to get approval for his release. Kaltenbrunner answered that it was impossible to release this man because he was a former Communist. That illustrates how hard it was to do anything.
  • As far as I remember, he was there two, three, or four times. At any rate, during the last months of the war I saw him two, three, or four times. Kaltenbrunner never said a word there. As far as I remember, he just listened and stood about.
  • Kaltenbrunner said that the western Nazis were less radical, but my opinion is that the Nazis of Austria were more radical. I always had to meet criticism from below in Austria, charges that I was not being active enough and not putting through National Socialist ideas.
  • Ernst Kaltenbrunner was heading in the same direction, disguised as an International Red Cross doctor, if disguise was possible for a man nearly seven feet tall with a face slashed with scars. He knew of plans to use escape routes through the Alps, but he was not sure if his old friend Martin Bormann could help. He had a rendezvous with Adolf Eichmann, the bureaucrat who took the view that the subhuman breeds should be exterminated. His fellow Austrian Otto Skorzeny had already gone to earth in the region. Earlier when Kaltenbrunner had been asked what to do about syphilitic prostitutes, he had said (with all the majesty of the law behind him as Heydrich's successor): "Bury them."
    • William Stevenson, 1973
  • SS Obergruppenführer Dr. Kaltenbrunner attended personally conferences with SS Obergruppenfuehrer Pohl, Chief of the SS Wirtschaft and Verwaltungshauptamt and Chief of the concentration camps. Due to these conferences and through talks with the Chief of Office Gruppenfuehrer Mueller of Amt IV and Gruppenfuehrer Nebe of Amt V, the Chief of the Security Police and SD, SS Obergruppenfuehrer Dr. Kaltenbrunner, must have known the state of affairs in the concentration camps.
    • Rudolf Mildner
  • I'm sure that Kaltenbrunner would not misuse the SD or Gestapo as Himmler and Heydrich did. Kaltenbrunner loves women and wine. He does not like police activity any more than I do.
    • Rudolf Mildner to Leon Goldensohn, 1/24/46
  • The execution of all so-called resettlement actions, that is, the sending away of Polish, Jewish, and people of non-German blood, inhabitants of a territory in Poland destined for Germanization was in the hands of the Chief of the RSHA, Heydrich, and, since the end of 1942, Kaltenbrunner.
  • In the courtroom, the defendants were at their best. They had to be, because the whole world was watching this trial. When they came back to the cells, then they acted normal; they were normal people. Some of them cried in there. As a matter of fact, Ernst Kaltenbrunner... a notorious man, he was probably... big, tall fellow, about six foot seven, with scars on his face. We gave him a nickname, Scarface. But he was probably the biggest crybaby in there. We caught him many times, quite a few times, crying.
    • William Glenny, 2006
  • Himmler regarded the accused Ernst Kaltenbrunner as the most suitable successor of the deceased Heydrich, who was executed by Czech Patriots. On January 30, 1943, he was appointed the boss of the Central Reich Security Office and the SD. By numerous documentary vouchers, in particular by the instructions to the Massendeportierung (Mass Deporting) of humans in concentration camps, and by the statements of the former boss of the principal message office (office VI), Walter Schellenberg, and the boss of the internal secret service (office III or SD), Otto Ohlendorf, Kaltenbrunner was transferred into its realm. Statements were signed by Kaltenbrunner, under which, in its entirety, propagated the heaviest crimes. In the negotiation from April 12, 1946 with Kaltenbrunner, the statement of the earlier Mauthausen prisoner Johann Kandutor was read out loud. In its statement Kandutor tells how Kaltenbrunner at the time drove him out during its camp attendance. Kaltenbrunner entered laughing during the gas chamber exercises, then people from the barracks were brought in for the execution, and all three kinds of the executions were demonstrated - hanging, shooting and gassing!
  • The whole court case was a huge challenge. I was assigned to the case of Ernst Kaltenbrunner, meaning I had to investigate the murder of millions of Jews. Kaltenbrunner took over from Reinhard Heydrich as the head of Reich security and was in charge of tens of thousands of Gestapo agents, police and security forces. I did not have the slightest idea of the scale of genocide that had taken place in Germany.
    • Whitney Harris
  • A security chief who was of the impression that the policing functions of his Gestapo and SD were somewhat on the order of directing traffic.
    • Robert H. Jackson
  • Who would Hitler say deceived him about conditions in concentration camps if not Kaltenbrunner, even as he would deceive us?
    • Robert H. Jackson
  • Kaltenbrunner, the grand inquisitor, took up the bloody mantle of Heydrich to stifle opposition and terrorize compliance, and buttressed the power of National Socialism on a foundation of guiltless corpses.
    • Robert H. Jackson
  • The mass gassing of Jews did not begin until the summer of 1942, after Heydrich's death and it took place under the aegis of his successor, Kaltenbrunner, the Austrian lawyer who, at Nuremberg, did not know anything about anything.
  • Hitler remained in his closely-guarded suite. It was long after midnight when he left the Imperial Hotel in the company of Heinrich Himmler to make the long-awaited visit to the Weltliche Schatzkammer to claim the Spear of Destiny as his own personal possession. Awaiting him at the Hofburg were Wolfram von Sievers, head of the Nazi Occult Bureau, Major Walter Buch, Nazi legal expert and chief of the USCHLA, and Ernst Kaltenbrunner, SS Obergruppenfuhrer, Austria. All three, along with Reinhard Heydrich's Sicherheitspolizei, had played a separate role in helping to secure the Spear for him.
  • Ernst Kaltenbrunner entered the execution chamber at 1.36 a.m., wearing a sweater beneath his blue double-breasted coat. With his lean haggard face furrowed by old duelling scars, this terrible successor to Reinhard Heydrich had a frightening look as he glanced around the room. He wet his lips apparently in nervousness as he turned to mount the gallows, but he walked steadily. This was the man, one of whose agents - a man named Rudolf Hoess - confessed at a trial that under Kaltenbrunner's orders he gassed 3 million human beings at the Auschwitz concentration camp! As the black hood was raised over his head, Kaltenbrunner, still speaking in a low voice, used a German phrase which translated means, "Germany, good luck."
    • Joseph Kingsbury-Smith

What's with these stupid stock pictures?[edit]

Snakes, the grim reaper? How hard is it to find pictures of Kaltenbrunner? It looks plain silly. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 70.67.7.62 (talk) 20:10, 16 October 2012

Having had little to do with this particular page, I yet generally encourage others to find images relevant to the pages or the quotes; if better and more relevant images can be found, one is welcome to change them, and if an image seems totally irrelevant one can argue for its removal or seek to encourage others to find its replacement. ~ Kalki·· 16:42, 30 December 2013 (UTC)
I have just replaced some of the images objected to with some of Kaltenbrunner or other Nazis. ~ Kalki·· 18:54, 30 December 2013 (UTC)