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Dr. jur. Ernst Kaltenbrunner, SS-Obergruppenführer und General der Waffen-SS und Polizei, Staatssekretär, M.d.R.

Born: 4. October 1903 in Ried / Innkreis / Oberösterreich.
Hanged: 16. October 1946 in Nürnberg Prison.

NSDAP-Nr.: 300 179, joined 18. October 1930
SS-Nr.: 13 039, joined 31. August 1931

Promotions :
General der Waffen-SS: 1. December 1944
SS-Obergruppenführer und General der Polizei: 21. June 1943
Generalleutnant der Polizei: 1. April 1941
SS-Untersturmführer d.R.: 1. July 1940
SS-Gruppenführer: 11. September 1938
SS-Brigadeführer: 12. March 1938
SS-Oberführer: 20. April 1937
SS-Standartenführer: 20. April 1936
SS-Sturmhauptführer: 25. September 1932
SS-Oberscharführer: ca. 1932

Attended five classes of Volksschule, then Realgymnasium in Linz; obtained his Abitur: 1921, then studied chemistry at the Technische Hochschule in Graz. Member of German-Nationalist fraternity “Arminia”. Studied law at University of Graz (as student, organized demonstrations and boycotts against Jewish students and professors, as well as foreign student groups).
Promoted Dr. jur.: 1926. Employed for one year in a Salzburg court, then practiced law in Linz (ultimately becoming involved in Nazi political activities).
Joined NSDAP: 18. October 1930. Joined SS, assigned to Staff of SS-Abschnitt VIII (Linz): 31. August 1931 -. Führer of SS Sturm in Linz: June 1932 - Rechtsberater (legal advisor) of SS-Abschnitt VII: 15. June 1934 - 12. March 1938. Assigned to Staff of SS-: 25. September 1932 - 15. April 1934. In custody of Austrian authorities at Anhaltelager Kaisersteinbruch in the Burgenland for Nazi political activities: January 1934 - April 1934 (4 1/2 months). Führer of 37.SS-Standarte (Base: Linz): 15. June 1934 - 15. June 1935.

Rearrested following Austrian Nazi Putsch of 25. July 1934 and charged with high treason; held in investigative detention for five months- released, 1935. Disbarred by Austrian authorities for his political activities. Führer of SS-Abschnitt VIII (HQ: Linz): 15. June 1935 - 12. March 1938 [Abschnitt officially banned by Austrian government, continued to exist in secrecy]. Arrested for treason (sentenced to six months’ imprisonment and forbidden to practice law): May 1935. Staatssekretär für die öffentliche Sicherheit (State Secretary for Security in Austrian Government of Dr. jur. Artur Seyss-Inquart): 11. March 1938 - . March 1938. Führer of SS-Oberabschnitt "Donau" (HQ: Linz to March 1938, then Wien; Retitled from SS-Oberabschnitt "Österreich", May 1938): 20. January 1937 - 31. January 1943. Member of the Lebensborn Society: (1. December 1937) -. Höhere SS und Polizeiführer "Donau" (HQ: Wien): 11. September 1938 - 31. January 1943. Member of the Reichstag (Wahlkreis Oberösterreich): January 1939 - 8. May 1945. Chef of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA): 1. January 1943 - May 1945. Staatssekretär für Sicherheitswesen im Reichsministerium des Innern (State Secretary for Security Matters in Reich Ministry of Interior): August 1943 - 8. May 1945. Assumed control of the Abwehr (German military intelligence organization): January 1944. Fled from Berlin to the Tyrol, reestablishing his heaquarters at Alt-Aussee: April 1945.

Postwar Prosecution:
Captured by U.S. troops, May 1945, Kaltenbrunner was tried by the International Military Tribunal at Nürnberg. Represented by Dr. Kurt Kauffmann. He suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on 18. November 1945. Kaltenbrunner denied responsibility for virtually all of the crimes of which he was accused, asserting that he had only visited a concentration camp (Mauthausen) on one occasion; that he had never seen a gas chamber; that his signature on numerous incriminating documents was forged; and that he had no real power or influence. He stated: “I do not feel guilty of any war crimes. I have only done my duty as an intelligence organ and I refuse to serve as an Ersatz [substitute] for Himmler.” Convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity, he was sentenced to death on 1. October 1946. <

Decorations & Awards:
~ Ritterkreuz des Kriegsverdienstkreuzes mit Schwertern: 15. November 1944 as SS-Obergruppenführer und General der Polizei, Chef of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (for his leading role in the investigation into the attempted coup of 20. July 1944)
~ Deutsches Kreuz in Silber: 22. October 1943
Kriegsverdienstkreuz I. Klasse mit Schwertern: 30. January 1943
Kriegsverdienstkreuz II. Klasse mit Schwertern: 1942
Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 1. Oktober 1938 mit Spange "Prager Burg"
Medaille zur Erinnerung an den 13. März 1938
Goldenes Parteiabzeichen: 30. January 1939
Blutorden: 31. May 1942
Dienstauszeichnungen der NSDAP in Silber und Bronze
Ehrendegen des RF SS
Totenkopfring der SS
SS-Zivilabzeichen Nr. 160 180
Ehrenwinkel für Altekämpfer

* Son of the attorney Hugo Kaltenbrunner (born 22. August 1875 in Grieskirchen as son of the attorney Dr. Karl Kaltenbrunner) and his wife, Therese, née Udwardy (died 1943). Grew up in a strongly German nationalist and anti-church household. Two brothers: Dr. jur. Werner Kaltenbrunner (born 26. July 1905 in Ried) became an attorney in Vöcklabruck and was also an SS member (SS-Nr. 487 762), holding the rank of SS-Untersturmführer with the SS-Hauptamt; and Dr. jur. Roland Kaltenbrunner (born in Raab / Oberdonau, 2. January 1910) rose to become Secretary of Commerce for Gau Oberdonau of the NSDAP in Linz, as well as an SS-Obersturmführer with the Hauptamt SS-Gericht (SS-Nr. 309 461).
* Religion: Catholic; left church with his wife, and they subsequently declared themselves “gottgläubig”.
* Married on 14. January 1934 to Elisabeth (Lisl) Eder (born 20. October 1908 in Linz; NSDAP-Nr. 301 490; Member of NS-Frauenschaft), 14. January 1934; three children (including one son born 28. February 1935; one daughter born 25. July 1937; and a third child (gender unknown at this time). Fathered two more children with his mistress.
* Kaltenbrunner and future SS-Obersturmbannführer Adolf Eichmann (1906 - 1962) attended school together in Linz, and became friends.
* Foreign language proficiency: English.
* Face badly scarred as the result of an auto accident.
* A heavy drinker and chainsmoker.
* Height: 6 ft., 4 in. (192 cm).


Hitler acclaiming the declaration of War in August 1914

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