Karl Wolff

SS general and war criminal (1900-1984)

Karl Friedrich Otto Wolff (13 May 190017 July 1984) was a high-ranking member of the Nazi SS. He held the rank of Obergruppenführer and General of the Waffen-SS. In May of 1945, Wolff negotiated the surrender of all German forces in Italy during the controversial secret Operation Sunrise. Wolff was imprisoned in May 1945 by US troops. He was further transferred to a British prison in Germany, tried by a German court and sentenced to five years imprisonment in November 1948 due to his membership of the SS. Seven months later his sentence was reduced to four years and he was released. In 1962 Wolff was again tried and convicted of deporting 300,000 Jews to the Treblinka extermination camp and sentenced to 15 years imprisonment. Wolff served only part of his sentence and was released in 1969 due to the condition of his health.

My Führer, if it's not possible for you to give me a date for the wonder weapons, we Germans must approach the Anglo-Americans and seek peace.


  • We found a round figure of three million Jews in Poland, and then immediately after that came the Russian campaign and we found another five million Jews in Russia. How on Earth could we manage to emigrate this eight million by using long and tiresome official methods if we could not, as was planned somehow or other after the war organise a general and mass-protected and organised emigration to Madagascar? We had conquered France, after all, and we could have compensated France adequately from our other colonial possessions so we could have used Madagascar — the island was big enough to accommodate such a number of Jews — but in the war we were cut off. We had no other choice.
    • Quoted in "Holocaust and the Moving Image" - Page 143 - by Toby Haggith, Joanna Newman - 2005
  • My Führer, if it's not possible for you to give me a date for the wonder weapons, we Germans must approach the Anglo-Americans and seek peace.
    • To Adolf Hitler. Quoted in "The Last 100 Days" - Page 173 - by John Toland - 1966
  • My Führer, I know, it is obvious from interrogations for one thing and from evidence I have from my particular field, that there are naturally differences among these unnatural Allies, but please do not be offended if I say that I do not believe the alliance will split up of itself without our own active intervention. Before that happens we shall be dead or beaten to the ground, and that must not happen — we must do something first.
    • To Adolf Hitler. Quoted in "A Special Mission" - by Dan Kurzman - 2007 - Political Science - Page 233
  • If you repeat to the Führer the story of the radio message from your agent, I won't go to the gallows alone. You and the Reichsführer will hang beside me.
  • I was understandably deeply disappointed that the highest National Socialist leaders did not stand up and answer for the deeds they had done in the past and left those of us who could not be made personally responsible in the lurch.
    • The World at War: the Landmark Oral History from the Classic TV Series (2007) by Richard Holmes, Page 582

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