He’s sweating, nervous, all these years of planning, a countries fate comes down to this moment.
He enters the stuffy conference room. Cigarette and cigar smoke cloud the air. Looking around, no one seems to have noticed his absence. Joining the group, he puts his briefcase at the edge of the table and takes his seat.
The room is filled with chatter. So many important men in one place, each desperately wanting to make their presence felt.
A phone can be heard ringing in the next room. Soon, the door creaks open. “Colonel you have a call”. He excuses himself and quickly exits the room.
“Yes, thank you. I’ll be there as soon as I can”, he can be heard saying.
Anxious, he hurries out of the building. He waves for his driver.
A dark, four door sedan pulls up. Heart pounding, his nerves build with each stride he takes toward the car. He takes his seat in the back and commands the driver to head for the airport.
As they pull away, a quick flash, then a thunderous bang can be heard behind them.
They look back. People are scrambling to see what just happened. Debris is everywhere. They quickly scan the smokey scene.
“Get us out of here” he shouts.
The driver pushes the pedal to the floor, the car lurches forward as they race away.
A small grin starts to appear on his face. “We did it” he says, trying to hold back his excitement.
Operation Valkyrie has begun.
What Claus von Stauffenberg doesn’t yet know is that his briefcase was moved from its original location causing the bombs blast to be redirected by the tables strong leg strong. Its intended target is injured but alive. Hitler has survived another assassination attempt.
The operation has failed. Thousands will be arrested. Thousands more executed.
Another year of war now remains ahead.
- 20 July 1944