War heroes from Germany in WWII is not a term that you hear very often, if ever. Our day for the tour of the Palace of Justice in Munich started out in a rush. While we left the hotel with plenty of time our extra time was soon eaten up by confusing streets and un-educated citizens. Well, maybe un-educated citizens isn’t a fair term but out of the 7 people we asked only one had ever heard of the Palace of Justice and she was only willing to guess as to where it was located. Finally, we find the huge and architecturally amazing building that covers an entire city block. Unfortunately for us we were on the wrong side and it took us several minutes to walk all the way around to the correct entrance.
Walking into the building I was instantly in awe!
The main atrium of the building was breathtaking. The corridors were all the same with the different placards denoting the different courtrooms. The first courtroom we saw had been updated and was very modern. The tables were set and were ready for that Monday mornings round of bar takers. We were told about the bar exam procedures in Germany and I think all of us left feeling very fortunate.
The next courtroom we saw was the courtroom where the students of the White Rose movement were tried.
Here the historian explained the White Rose movement and the significance of the pictured individuals. The historian stated that these individuals were “lifted up” because Germany was is such a dire need for some heroes to come from this time in their history. It caught me off guard when he said German War Hero during WWII. I understand very much what he meant by saying that heroes were needed during that time. After seeing the movie, it was a very ominous feeling to be in the same courtroom where Sophie and her brother stood trial. Today it is hard to imagine how big of a deal it was for them to deliver the leaflets. Today I can speak my mind and broadcast my opinion through e-mail listservs, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, websites on the internet, the list goes on. It is difficult to imagine the careful planning and the resources that went into the leaflets and their distribution.
The next bit that was hard for me to swallow was when the historian talked about the member who was a father to two with one on the way. I found myself seriously questioning whether I could take on such a dangerous position as a parent. I came to the conclusion that his belief in the movement had to have been very, very strong. I felt almost guilty as I don’t know that I would have came to the same conclusion.
The White Rose movement is a movement only on a small scale but it is one that is a big slice of a huge part of history.