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A Daring Venture

Rudolf Hess and the Ill-Fated Peace Mission of 1941

Peter Raina

At the height of the Second World War, Hitler’s Deputy, Rudolf Hess, made a dramatic solo flight to the British Isles. His arrival there was sensational news – and it baffled everyone. Why had he come?
Hess claimed he had flown to Britain entirely of his own initiative and was on a personal mission of peace. But so unlikely was the success of such an appeal in Churchill’s entrenched Britain that historians continue to wonder at his motives.
In this book, Peter Raina publishes, for the first time, complete texts of Hess’s ‘peace proposals’ and a treatise he wrote in captivity outlining how he saw Nazi Germany’s role in Europe. These texts throw considerable light on Hess’s mission and also on how the Nazi leadership saw their programme of expansion and their relations with Britain.
Disconcertingly single-minded and an unashamed disciple of Hitler, Hess was at heart an idealist. His friend and confidant Albrecht Haushofer was an idealist of a different kind, and joined the German Resistance Movement. The frame story of this book relates how the two men moved to their tragic ends.
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Chapter 3: The Duke Meets the Reichsminister


← 20 | 21 → CHAPTER THREE

The Duke Meets the Reichsminister

Hamilton now rushed to the pilot, who had been impatiently and incessantly asking his captors to get him in contact. Restless himself, the Duke was escorted into the room where the unknown guest was lying on a bed, still suffering from his aching ankle. He got up the moment the door of his room opened and the Duke entered.

On how the meeting proceeded the Duke gave a full report, which we publish here.

Report on Interview with Herr Hess by Wing Commander The Duke of Hamilton, Sunday, 11th May 19411

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