Heydrich was chairing the 1942 Wannsee conference, which laid out the plans for the extermination of all European Jews. Heydrich was mortally wounded during an assassination attempt May 27, 1942 in Prague and died several days later.
In 1942, Reinhard Heydrich was the Reichsprotektor of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, which had been occupied by Germany in 1939. On the morning of May 27, 1942, he was being driven from his country villa to his office in Prague. When he reached the Holesovice area of Prague, his car was attacked by two Czechoslovak resistance fighters, Jozef Gabcik and Jan Kubis. These men, who had been trained in Britain, had parachuted into Czechoslovakia in December, 1941, as part of Operation Anthropoid. On June 4, 1942, Heydrich died in Bulovka hospital in Prague from an infection. Hitler, enraged, ordered Kurt Daluege, Heydrich's replacement, to wade through blood to find Heydrich's killers. The Germans began a massive retaliation campaign against the civilian Czech population.
The best known of these assaults occurred on June 10. German security police surrounded the village of Lidice, blocking all avenues of escape. The Nazis chose this village because of its residents' known hostility to the occupation and because Lidice was suspected of harbouring local resistance partisans. The entire population was rounded up, and all men over fifteen years of age were put in a barn. They were shot the next day. Another nineteen men, who were working in a mine, along with seven women, were sent to Prague, where they were also shot. The remaining women were shipped to the Ravensbrück concentration camp, where about a quarter of them died from typhus or overwork. The children were taken to a concentration camp at the Gneisenaustreet, where they were sorted by racial criteria, and those deemed suitable for 'Aryanization' were shipped to Germany (after the war most were found and returned); the rest of the children (82) were killed in Chelmno. The village itself was razed. A genuine film document, made by a German soldier, has survived.
Last words of the parachutists were: "We will not surrender. Never. We are Czech."
An authentic site of a significant World War II battle in Prague,
in a long time concealed shelter, which was provided by Czech Orthodox church to Czecho-slovakian parashutists from 27.5.1942 - 18.6.1942 after the attack on Reinharda Heydrich. Military operation against Heydrich "Anthropoid" was waged by Czechoslovakian exile govenment in London an belongs to "the most important acts of resistance in European sense" (V. Havel, 1992).
The mission of the Memorial:
is primarily to provide truthful interpretation of the Heydrich terror epoch and emphasis of the testimony to reverence and admiration to the soldiers and participants of the non-communist resistance, emphasis of the testimony to their voluntarily and even involuntarily sacrifice for freedom of the Czechoslovakian Republic in the time of Nazi occupation (1938 - 45).
The Memorial consists of:
The Czech Orthodox cathedral of saints Cyril a Methodeus
The Crypt under the cathedral - sacred place
Permanent exhibition in the hall
Lecture hall and videoroom
Memorial owner is The Prague´s City Hall, the activity is performed by the church spiritual service, exhibition is installed by The Military History Institute in Prague.
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