Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers
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Emotion and remembrance for the 70th Federal Commemoration of “Operation Walkyrie” in Berlin.

On July 20th, 2014 the President of CIOR, Commander (R) Richard Roll, was invited by the Foundation of the 20th of July 1944 as Guest of Honour to the Federal Commemoration of the military coup against Hitler’s dictatorship, 70 years earlier. The purpose of this commemoration was also to remember all acts of resistance against the Hitler regime between 1933 and 1945.

The series of commemorations started with a “Ceremonial hour” at the Bendler Block”, the very place where the Stauffenberg coup was staged and ultimately crushed, resulting in the execution of the first 4 senior officers on the same day – including the Colonel Count von Stauffenberg himself. The German Federal President, H.E. Joachim Gauck, was the senior host of this Ceremony, which was followed by a wreath laying at the Plötzensee prison in Berlin, where over 80 military and civilian authorities, most of them earmarked for the post-war cabinet that had been secretly put in place, were executed in a most barbaric way.

The Federal Minister of Defence, H.E. Ursula von der Leyen, then gave a reception to the high civilian and military authorities, to which the diplomatic community was also attending. Commander (R) Richard Roll had the opportunity to have a 10-minutes discussion with the Minister, which allowed mentioning the importance and purpose, for the reserve and the collective defence of NATO countries, of the upcoming CIOR/CIOMR/NFRC Summer Congresses/Sessions in just a few weeks from now.

The day ended looking into the future, with an impressive ceremony where several hundreds of new recruits gave their oath to a democratic and free Germany. Commander (R) Richard Roll had the opportunity to meet and discuss with the President of the Verband der Reservisten, the German Reservists’ Association and member of the German Bundestag (Parliament), Dr. R. Kiesewetter.

This visit allowed CIOR to raise the profile and visibility of the reservists of Alliance countries as key players to secure a democratic and free Europe. It also anticipated another cycle of commemoration remembering the start of WW1 in Fulda during the opening ceremony of the CIOR Congress. This Ceremony will have a particular importance, as it will materialize, through the presence of reservists from over 30 countries, many of them opponents at that time, what CIOR stands for – actively maintaining, through hard work, peace for the transatlantic community.

© 2012 Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers