One of Germany’s most famous anti-Nazi heroes, Sophie Scholl, was born on this day in 1921. As a university student in Munich, Scholl, along with her brother, Hans, and several friends, formed a non-violent, anti-Nazi resistance group called the White Rose. The group ran a leaflet and graffiti campaign calling on their fellow Germans to resist Hilter’s regime. Scholl first became involved in resistance organizing after learning of the mass killings of Jews and reading an anti-Nazi sermon by Clemens August Graf von Galen, the Roman Catholic Bishop of Münster. She was deeply moved by the “theology of conscience” and declared, “Somebody, after all, had to make a start. What we wrote and said is also believed by many others. They just don’t dare express themselves as we did.” In 1943, Scholl and the other members of the White Rose were arrested by the Gestapo for distributing leaflets at the University of Munich and taken to Stadelheim Prison. After a short trial on February 22, 1943, Scholl, her brother Hans and their friend Christop Probst, all pictured here, were found guilty of treason and sentenced to death. At her execution only a few hours later, Scholl made this final statement: “How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to give himself up individually to a righteous cause. Such a fine, sunny day, and I have to go, but what does my death matter, if through us thousands of people are awakened and stirred to action?” Following the deaths of the White Rose’s leaders, their final leaflet was smuggled to England. In mid-1943, Allied Forces dropped millions of copies of the “Manifesto of the Students of Munich” over Germany. Scholl is now honored as one of the great German heroes who actively opposed the Nazi regime.

Sophie

Thanks to A Mighty Girl for this post.

25 years ago on this date, the Baltic independence movement, called the Singing Revolution, reached a peak when the Latvian People’s Front joined with its counterparts in Estonia and Lithuania to form a 373-mile human chain (600km) connecting the three capitols, Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius with 2 million people united in a call for democracy and an end to Soviet control.  The Singing Revolution lasted more than four years, with various protests and acts of defiance. Lithuania was the first of the three Baltic states to start the movement. In Estonia, on the Tallinn road, they sang national songs and hymns, which had been strictly forbidden during the years of Soviet occupation, while rock musicians played. In 1991, as Soviet tanks were rolling throughout the countryside in an attempt to quell the Singing Revolution, the Estonian Soviet Legislature together with the Congress of Estonia  proclaimed the restoration of the independent State of Estonia and repudiated Soviet legislation. Estonians stood as human shields to protect radio and TV stations from the Soviet tanks. As a result of the revolution, Estonia won its independence without any bloodshed. Additionally, when the USSR invaded the already independent state of Lithuania, thousands of people stood against the tanks and machine guns without fighting, but singing, emphasizing the idea that peaceful action can lead to victory.

25 years ago on this date, the Baltic independence movement, called the Singing Revolution, reached a peak when the Latvian People’s Front joined with its counterparts in Estonia and Lithuania to form a 373-mile human chain (600km) connecting the three capitols, Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius with 2 million people united in a call for democracy and an end to Soviet control. The Singing Revolution lasted more than four years, with various protests and acts of defiance. Lithuania was the first of the three Baltic states to start the movement. In Estonia, on the Tallinn road, they sang national songs and hymns, which had been strictly forbidden during the years of Soviet occupation, while rock musicians played. In 1991, as Soviet tanks were rolling throughout the countryside in an attempt to quell the Singing Revolution, the Estonian Soviet Legislature together with the Congress of Estonia proclaimed the restoration of the independent State of Estonia and repudiated Soviet legislation. Estonians stood as human shields to protect radio and TV stations from the Soviet tanks. As a result of the revolution, Estonia won its independence without any bloodshed. Additionally, when the USSR invaded the already independent state of Lithuania, thousands of people stood against the tanks and machine guns without fighting, but singing, emphasizing the idea that peaceful action can lead to victory.

Baltic-Chain

Thanks to the Good News Network for this post.

“ Free love? As if love is anything but free! Man has bought brains, but all the millions in the world have failed to buy love. Man has subdued bodies, but all the power on earth has been unable to subdue love. Man has conquered whole nations, but all his armies could not conquer love. Man has chained and fettered the spirit, but he has been utterly helpless before love. High on a throne, with all the splendor and pomp his gold can command, man is yet poor and desolate, if love passes him by. And if it stays, the poorest hovel is radiant with warmth, with life and color. Thus love has the magic power to make of a beggar a king. Yes, love is free; it can dwell in no other atmosphere. In freedom it gives itself unreservedly, abundantly, completely. All the laws on the statutes, all the courts in the universe, cannot tear it from the soil, once love has taken root.” ~ Emma Goldman

“ Free love? As if love is anything but free! Man has bought brains, but all the millions in the world have failed to buy love. Man has subdued bodies, but all the power on earth has been unable to subdue love. Man has conquered whole nations, but all his armies could not conquer love. Man has chained and fettered the spirit, but he has been utterly helpless before love. High on a throne, with all the splendor and pomp his gold can command, man is yet poor and desolate, if love passes him by. And if it stays, the poorest hovel is radiant with warmth, with life and color. Thus love has the magic power to make of a beggar a king. Yes, love is free; it can dwell in no other atmosphere. In freedom it gives itself unreservedly, abundantly, completely. All the laws on the statutes, all the courts in the universe, cannot tear it from the soil, once love has taken root.”   ~ Emma Goldman

On this day in 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. Let’s take this moment to honor him today for his great and tireless spirit and selfless contribution to the progress of humanity. Much love and peace to you dear brother. We shall overcome!

On this day in 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. Let's take this moment to honor him today for his great and tireless spirit and selfless contribution to the progress of humanity. Much love and peace to you dear brother. We shall overcome!

“Oh, my friends, if there is any one thing that we must see today is that these are revolutionary times. All over the globe men are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression, and out of the wounds of a frail world, new systems of justice and equality are being born. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are rising up as never before. The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. They are saying, unconsciously, as we say in one of our freedom songs, ‘Ain’t gonna let nobody turn me around!'” ~Martin Luther King Jr.