"Traitors or heroes?"

Fritz Bauer and the Trial of the July 20 coup

Fritz Bauer, 1965. Photo credit: Münchner Stadtmuseum, Sammlung Fotografie, archiv stefan moses

20 March 2024 to 26 May 2024

On 20 July 1944, a group of resistance fighters led by Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler. The plan failed and the resistance fighters were executed. As commander of the "Großdeutschland" guard battalion, Otto Ernst Remer was involved in the suppression of the attempted coup in the Bendlerblock in Berlin. In 1949, he was one of the co-founders of the far-right "Socialist Reich Party". In spring 1951, Remer also defamed the resistance fighters around Stauffenberg as "traitors to the country". The Braunschweig public prosecutor Fritz Bauer charged him with "slander" and "defamation of the memory of the deceased" and initiated the "Trial of 20 July". The resistance fighters were to be freed from the stigma of betrayal and the right to resist the Nazi regime of injustice finally recognised.

The Braunschweig district court held four days of hearings in March 1952, with relatives and survivors reporting on the motives of the resistance fighters. Expert witnesses spoke about the soldier's oath and refuted the "stab in the back" propagated by Remer. A highlight of the trial was Fritz Bauer's plea. The trial attracted nationwide attention. The Braunschweig Regional Court sentenced Otto Ernst Remer to three months' imprisonment and deemed the attempted coup of 20 July 1944 to be lawful. The trial against Remer was thus a decisive step towards recognising the resistance of 20 July.

All texts and captions of the exhibition are available in English and German.

Adress of the Exhibition
Memorium Nuremberg Trials
Cube 600
Fürther Straße 104
90429 Nürnberg

Opening Hours
The temporary exhibition can be seen during the regular opening hours of the Memorium Nuremberg Trials.
Memorium opening hours

Important Note
Registration is required for exhibition visits in groups of more than five people.

A temporary exhibition of the German Resistance Memorial Centre.

Admission is free of charge. Temporary exhibitions can be visited independently of the permanent exhibition of the Memorium.