Horst Wessel
Horst Wessel
Historical Figure
Nationality: Germany
Date of Birth: 1907
Date of Death: 1930
Cause of Death: Gunshot to the face
Occupation: SA-Sturmführer
Political Party: Nazi Party
Turtledove Appearances:
In the Presence of Mine Enemies
POD: c. 1940
Type of Appearance: Posthumous reference

Horst Wessel (9 October 1907 – 23 February 1930) was a German Nazi Party activist and an SA-Sturmführer who became a posthumous hero of the Nazi movement following his violent death in 1930. He was the author of the lyrics to the song "Die Fahne hoch" ("The Flag On High"), usually known as Horst-Wessel-Lied ("the Horst Wessel Song"), which became the Nazi Party anthem and Germany's de facto co-national anthem from 1933 to 1945. His death also resulted in his becoming the "patron" for the Lüftwaffe's 26th Destroyer Wing and the 18th SS Volunteer Panzergrenadier Division during World War II.

Horst Wessel in In the Presence of Mine EnemiesEdit

Following Germany's victory in World War II, three generations of German schoolchildren were taught that Horst Wessel was a hero and a martyr for the cause of Nazism. When she discovered that she and her family were secretly Jews in March 2010, Alicia Gimpel began to doubt everything that she had ever been taught, including whether Wessel was truly a hero.[1]

He wrote the song "Die Fahne hoch" ("The Flag On High"), which was colloquially known as "the Horst Wessel Song." It was played, in full or in part, at all major Nazi Party functions and before every televisor address by the Führer. Susanna Weiss, another secret Jew, considered the song's lyrics to be "asinine."