Rudolf Karl Augstein (5 November 1923 – 7 November 2002) was one of
the most influential German journalists, founder and part-owner of Der
Life and career
Born in Hanover, Germany, he was a radio operator and artillery
observer in the German
Wehrmacht during World War II.
Der Spiegel in 1946/1947, which became (and still is) the
most important investigative weekly magazine in Germany. During the
Spiegel scandal in 1961 and 1962, he was arrested and jailed for 103
Franz Josef Strauß
Franz Josef Strauß was forced to resign as Minister of
the Defense under continuing protest from the public and the
resignation of the FDP cabinet members.
Augstein became a member of the
Bundestag in 1972 for the Free
Democrats for North Rhine-Westphalia, but gave back his seat by 1973
to focus on his duties as a journalist. It has been speculated that
he considered himself much more influential with his magazine.
An amateur historian, Augstein published several successful books,
among them Preußens Friedrich und die Deutschen (1981,
ISBN 3-89190-106-2), Otto von Bismarck (1990,
ISBN 3-445-06012-6), and, about his lifetime opponent,
Überlebensgroß Herr Strauß. Ein Spiegelbild (1983,
ISBN 3-499-33002-4). During the
Historikerstreit of 1986-1987,
Augstein was fierce in his criticism of
Ernst Nolte and Andreas
Hillgruber for creating what Augstein called the "New Auschwitz
Lie". A controversial statement by Augstein was his description of
Hillgruber as a "constitutional Nazi". Augstein called for
Hillgruber to be fired from his post at the University of Cologne for
being a "constitutional Nazi", and argued that there was no moral
difference between Hillgruber and other "constitutional Nazis" like
Hans Globke. Augstein wrote in opposition to Nolte that:
Not for nothing did Nolte let us know that the annihilation of the
kulaks, the peasant middle class, had taken place from 1927 to 1930,
before Hitler seized power, and that the destruction of the Old
Bolsheviks and countless other victims of Stalin's insanity had
happened between 1934 and 1938, before the beginning of Hitler's war.
But Stalin's insanity was, in contrast to Hitler's insanity, a
realist's insanity. After all this drivel comes one thing worth
discussing: whether Stalin pumped up Hitler and whether Hitler pumped
up Stalin. This can be discussed, but the discussion does not address
the issue. It is indeed possible that Stalin was pleased by how Hitler
treated his bosom buddy Ernst Röhm and the entire SA leadership in
1934. It is not possible that Hitler began his war against Poland
because he felt threatened by Stalin's regime...One does not have to
agree in everything with Konrad Adenauer. But in the light of the
crass tendency to deny the co-responsibility of the Prussian-German
Wehrmacht ("The oath! The oath!") ones gains an understanding for the
point of the view of the nonpatriot Adenauer that Hitler's Reich was
the continuation of the Prussian-German regime
Stefan Aust became editor-in-chief of Der Spiegel, Augstein
retreated more and more to private life, although he continued to
publish commentaries regularly in the magazine almost until his death.
For his lifetime achievements for peace, civil liberties and freedom
of the press he was honoured with the title "
Journalist of the
century" in 2000 by 101 German journalists. Augstein was among
International Press Institute's 50
World Press Freedom Hero laureates
in 2000 for his role in the Spiegel scandal.
Augstein married five times: including Maria Carlsson, a German
translator in 1968 and until their divorce in 1970. The couple had 2
children; Franziska Augstein, Jakob Augstein. His fifth marriage,
Tonder on 13 October 2000, was to his long-standing
companion, the Hamburg art dealer Anna Maria Hürtgen.
He died on 7 November 2002 from pneumonia and was buried on the island
^ "Um Antwort wird gebeten", Der Spiegel, 16 January 1973
^ a b c Augstein, Rudolf "The New Auschwitz Lie" ("Die neue
Auschwitz-Lüge") pages 131-134 from Forever In The Shadow of Hitler?
edited by Ernst Piper, Humanities Press, Atlantic Highlands, New
Jersey, 1993 pages 133-134
^ Augstein, Rudolf "The New Auschwitz Lie" pages 131-134 from Forever
In The Shadow of Hitler? edited by Ernst Piper, Humanities Press,
Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, 1993 page 131
Erich Böhme (managing editor) (6 October 1986). "Die neue
Auschwitz-Lüge Von Augstein, Rudolf". SPIEGEL-ONLINE. p. 62.
^ Laudatory submission for Hero of World Press Freedom Award: Rudolf
Augstein Archived 2011-06-08 at the Wayback Machine.
Rudolf Augstein heiratet Anna Maria Hürtgen in Der
Tagesspiegel vom 13. Oktober 2000
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rudolf Augstein.
Biography at "Lebendiges virtuelles Museum online" (in German, also
used as a reference)
ISNI: 0000 0003 6854 3063
BNF: cb11889539x (data)