Alexander von Falkenhausen
(1878 - 1966)
Alexander von Falkenhausen was born in Germany on October 29, 1878. He joined the German Army and served as a military
attaché in Japan. During the First World War, he served with
the Turkish Army in Palestine where he won the Pour le Mérite.
He remained in the army and, in 1927, he became the
head of the Dresden Infantry School. After retiring in 1930, Falkenhausen
went to China where he was a military adviser to Chaing Kai-Shek.
Falkenhausen was recalled to the German Army in May
1938 and, after serving as general of infantry during the Western Offensive,
he was appointed as military governor of Belgium (1940-44). In this post he authorized deportations and the execution
He detested Hitler and the Nazi regime
and became a close friend of anti-Hitler conspirators Carl
Goerdeler and Erwin
von Witzleben. He agreed to support the Paris conspirators in the
event of a military uprising in the West.
Just two days before Stauffenberg's
coup attempt, Falkenhausen was dismissed from his post. After the failure
of the July 20 plot,
he was arrested and spent the rest of the war being transferred from
one concrentration camp to
another until he was liberated by the western Allies in 1945.
Falkenhausen was sent back to Belgium for trial as
a war criminal. He was sentenced in March 1951 to 12 years for deporting
Jews and executing hostages. After overwhelming evidence proved Falkenhausen
had tried to save as many Jews and other Belgians as possible from being
deported and executed, he was freed just three weeks into his sentence.
Alexander von Falkenhausen died on July 31, 1966.
Sources: Joric Cetner
Educational. Joric Photo.