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Hitler assassinated by foreign citizen pre-WWII. What happens next?

Kato

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A very common AH cliche/trope surrounds the assassination of Adolf Hitler - most commonly evoking the 1944 July Plot, or else the efforts of British Intelligence agents during war time.

However up to 1939, Hitler was seen by the wider world as a far less morally black character - whether that arose from a lack of foresight, apologism, Versaille-era guilt, or else pure wishful thinking and turning a blind eye to certain German domestic policies; he was remained just another head of state in the eyes of many outside political figures and the citizens of countries like the UK. Only later is the 'most evil man in history' label consistently applied.

Further, in the late 30s the German regime attempted to play down its aggressive and militaristic aims in the eyes of western nations, their statesmen, and their civilians. Figures like Lloyd George, the Duke of Windsor, and HG Wells were given tours and private audiences with Hitler, as well as being invited to the rallies at Nuremberg. Foreign journalists were given heavily sanitised tours of Germany, to promote the 'economic miracle' that had occurred post-Weimer, and the success and strength of the Nazi ideology.

Some foreign observers would be taken in by this PR offensive, however many became repulsed by what they saw first hand. In private audiences Hitler could often be charming for a period, before inevitably slipping into one delusional rant or other. And of course, there would be many socialists, liberals, and conservatives who opposed National Socialism from the very beginning.

So what if, during this period of 'charm offensive' a foreign visitor had taken advantage of access to a less paranoid pre-war Fuhrer to somehow* become a foreign proto-Stauffenberg? Many of course expressed precisely these impulsive sentiments in memoirs or letters, either at the time or in hindsight. Having killed Hitler, what happens next? If they are caught by German police (as seems likely), what happens next wrt the inevitable diplomatic incident? If the assassin somehow* escapes back to their home nation (e.g. the UK), are they extradited back to Berlin, or else do they become a figure of high controversy and divided loyalties within domestic politics?

What, for a TLDR, would be the legal and diplomatic implications, consequences or processes arising in this scenario?


* - I am entirely aware that this qualifier is doing a lot of heavy lifting in both of these places.
 
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napoleon IV

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The person would almost certainly be extradited if they escaped. Few countries would want other countries to think that they're okay with the murder of a head of state (at least, a European head of state). The only country I can think of that might buck this trend is the Soviet Union, but I can't think of any Soviet citizens that would have had access to Hitler. Similarly, if the assassin was caught by the German police most countries would just accept that one of their citizens is going to executed (they would probably spend most of their time trying to prove that the assassin acted alone). Domestic reaction is a different story. The far-left would welcome Hitler's death, and the assassin would probably become an anti-fascist martyr. Reaction from the moderate left, centrists, and the moderate right would be more mixed, with most condemning the assassination but some (like Churchill) expressing the opinion that it was ultimately a good thing. The far-right of course would be appalled.

On the German side, Goering would succeed Hitler, and would use this opportunity to rally the public around the regime. The Nazis would blame the Jews for Hitler's death, and we would probably see an earlier Kristallnacht. The idea of a foreign conspiracy against Germany would gain even more traction, and the relationship with the assassin's home country would suffer. In the long run Hitler would probably be viewed as a precursor of the horrors to come, with Goering becoming the most evil man in the world.
 

The Red

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The only country I can think of that might buck this trend is the Soviet Union, but I can't think of any Soviet citizens that would have had access to Hitler.
Olga Chekhova could probably pull it off, although it's unlikely that she'd do it without Moscow's orders which sort of contradicts the implied "lone wolf" aspect of the OP.

It's hard to tell whether or not Goering would be a more "effective" leader than Hitler, he'd probably be less willing to tolerate disparate and competing power structures and he was apparently opposed to launching Barbarossa but on the other hand everything he was in charge of IOTL was a klepocratic mess and I don't think it would be going too far as to question whether or not the OKW would actually agree to fight for him.
 

Creekmench

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Olga Chekhova could probably pull it off, although it's unlikely that she'd do it without Moscow's orders which sort of contradicts the implied "lone wolf" aspect of the OP.

It's hard to tell whether or not Goering would be a more "effective" leader than Hitler, he'd probably be less willing to tolerate disparate and competing power structures and he was apparently opposed to launching Barbarossa but on the other hand everything he was in charge of IOTL was a klepocratic mess and I don't think it would be going too far as to question whether or not the OKW would actually agree to fight for him.
I can see this third reich surviving with no Eastern Front lasting until the late forties when nukes and Stalin comes knocking.
 
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