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Eberhard von Breitenbuch

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Title: Eberhard von Breitenbuch  
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Subject: 20 July plot, Operation Spark (1940), German Resistance to Nazism, Rudolf Christoph Freiherr von Gersdorff
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Eberhard von Breitenbuch

Eberhard von Breitenbuch (20 July 1910 – 21 September 1980) was a German cavalry officer who served in Army Group Centre of the Wehrmacht during World War II with the rank of Rittmeister and took part in the military-based conspiracy against Adolf Hitler that culminated in the July 20 Plot. Von Breitenbuch was a Knight of Justice of the Order of Saint John.

He was born in Dietzhausen near Suhl, Thuringia. During World War II he served as special missions officer to Generalfeldmarschall Erwin von Witzleben and in August 1943 Oberst Henning von Tresckow arranged for him to be an aide to Generalfeldmarschall Guenther von Kluge in an attempt to gain his support for the conspiracy. When von Kluge was injured in a road accident on 27 October 1943 he became an aide to Generalfeldmarschall Ernst Busch.

On 9 March 1944 Busch and his aides were summoned to brief Hitler at the Berghof in Bavaria on 11 March. Following a debate with von Tresckow, Breitenbuch agreed to attempt to assassinate the Führer by shooting him in the head[1] using a 7.65mm Browning pistol concealed in his trouser pocket, having declined a suicide attempt using a bomb. A Condor aircraft was sent to collect Busch and von Breitenbuch and he was allowed into the Berghof, but was not able to carry out the plan because SS guards had been ordered - earlier that day - not to permit aides into the conference room with Hitler.[2]

He refused to be involved in any further assassination attempts. The weapon and his role in the conspiracy were not discovered and he was never arrested by the Gestapo. After the war he worked in forestry management and he died in Göttingen aged 70.

See also

  • Assassination attempts on Adolf Hitler


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