Lord Haw-Haw, an interresting story...

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Maestro, Oct 10, 2007.

  1. Maestro

    Maestro Active Member

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    Greetings ladies and gentlemen.

    While on Wikipedia, I fell on the following article :

    William Joyce - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    [...]In late August 1939, shortly before war was declared, Joyce and his wife Margaret fled to Germany. Joyce had been tipped off that the British authorities intended to detain him under Defence Regulation 18B. Joyce became a naturalised German in 1940.

    In Berlin, Joyce could not find employment until a chance meeting with fellow Mosleyite sympathiser Dorothy Eckersley got him an audition at the Rundfunkhaus (radio centre). Despite having a heavy cold and almost losing his voice, he was recruited immediately for radio announcements and script writing at German radio's English service.

    The name "Lord Haw-Haw of Zeesen" was coined by the pseudonymous Daily Express radio critic Jonah Barrington in 1939, but this referred initially to Wolf Mitler, (or possibly Norman Baillie-Stewart). When Joyce became the best-known propaganda broadcaster, the nickname was transferred to him. Joyce's broadcasts initially came from studios in Berlin, later transferring (due to heavy Allied bombing) to Luxembourg and finally to Apen near Hamburg, and were relayed over a network of German controlled radio stations that included Hamburg, Bremen, Luxembourg, Hilversum, Calais, Oslo and Zeesen. Joyce also broadcast on and wrote scripts for the German Büro Concordia organisation which ran several black propaganda stations (many of which pretended to broadcast illegally from within Britain) [2]

    Although listening to his broadcasts was officially discouraged (but not actually illegal), they became very popular with the British public. The German broadcasts always began with the announcer's words "Germany calling, Germany calling, Germany calling" (because of a nasal drawl this sounded like: Jairmany calling, Jairmany calling, Jairmany calling). These broadcasts urged the British people to surrender, and were well known for their jeering, sarcastic and menacing tone. However, far from breaking British morale they served only to increase either resentment or ridicule of Joyce. There was probably also a covert desire by listeners to hear what the other side was saying, since information during wartime was severely censored and restricted and at the start of the war it was possible for German broadcasts to be better informed than those of the BBC. This was a scenario which reversed towards the middle of the war, with some German high command officers tuning to the BBC for an accurate version of events.

    Joyce recorded his final broadcast on April 30, 1945, during the Battle of Berlin[3]. In an exhausted, possibly intoxicated voice, he chided Britain's role in Germany's imminent defeat and warned that the war would leave Britain poor and barren. (There are conflicting accounts as to whether this last programme was actually transmitted, even though a tape was found in the Radio Hamburg studios.) He signed off with a final defiant "Heil Hitler" [4]. The next day Radio Hamburg was seized by British forces who on 4 May used it to make a mock "Germany calling" broadcast denouncing Joyce [5].

    Besides broadcasting, Joyce's duties included distributing propaganda among British prisoners of war, whom he tried to recruit into the British Free Corps. He wrote a book, Twilight Over England, which was promoted by the German Ministry of Propaganda, a work that unfavourably compared the evils of allegedly Jewish-dominated capitalist Britain with the wonders of National Socialist Germany. Adolf Hitler awarded Joyce the War Merit Cross (First and Second Class) for his broadcasts, although they never met in person.

    At the end of the war, Joyce was captured by British forces at Flensburg near the Germany-Denmark border. He was engaged in conversation by soldiers who initially thought he was a German civilian. However, his voice betrayed him, and he was arrested and eventually returned to Britain. During the course of his arrest he was shot in the buttocks when the soldiers thought he was going for a gun (he was actually reaching for a false passport, claiming he was a schoolteacher, after one of the soldiers asked if he was "Lord Haw Haw").

    He was tried on three counts of high treason:

    * William Joyce, on 18 September 1939, and on numerous other days between 18 September 1939 and 30 April 1945 did aid and assist the enemies of the King by broadcasting to the King's subjects propaganda on behalf of the King's enemies.
    * William Joyce, on 26 September 1940, did aid and comfort the King's enemies by purporting to be naturalised as a German citizen.
    * William Joyce, on 18 September 1939, and on numerous other days between 18 September 1939 and 2 July 1940 did aid and assist the enemies of the King by broadcasting to the King's subjects propaganda on behalf of the King's enemies.

    During the processing of the charges Joyce's United States nationality came to light, and it seemed that he would have to be acquitted, based not upon innocence of the charges of aiding the Nazi war effort but rather upon a lack of jurisdiction; he could not be convicted of betraying a country that was not his own. However, the Attorney General, Sir Hartley Shawcross, successfully argued that Joyce's possession of a British passport, even though he had mis-stated his nationality to get it, entitled him (until it expired) to British diplomatic protection in Germany and therefore he owed allegiance to the King at the time he commenced working for the Germans. It was on this technicality, confirmed by the Court of Appeal and the House of Lords (on a split decision), that Joyce was convicted and sentenced to death.[...]
     
  2. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    Interesting Maestro.Thanks.

    A 'scarred' man.

    In 1923 at the age of 17, the same year as Hitler's attempted putsch in Munich and 9 years before Mosley formed the BUF, Joyce joined the 'British Fascisti Ltd' – a movement based on its Italian big brother. At a Conservative meeting at Lambeth's Bath Hall the following year a squad of fascists under the control of William Joyce became involved in a fracas with left-wing agitators. It was here that Joyce received the famous scar that ran down the right side of his face from the lobe of his ear to the corner of his mouth. The scar was received during fighting in the meeting and Joyce had no doubt that the perpetrators were "Jewish Communists." This incident had a marked bearing on his outlook. He was reminded of his hatred of "the enemy" every time he looked in the mirror until the day he died.

    A scanned image, but you can just make out the scar extending from the right corner of his mouth to the ear lobe and what looks like extending onto the parietal area of his scalp.


    [​IMG]
     
  3. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

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    If he became a naturalized German, can you still be convicted on treason against the allies? It would see logical to me (of course, I think weird) if he committed treason it would have been if he was doing things against Germany.
     
  4. Graeme

    Graeme Well-Known Member

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    The Trial

    On 17 September in the Central Criminal Court at the Old Bailey, before Mr. Justice Tucker and a jury, William Joyce was charged with three counts of High Treason:

    1. William Joyce, on the 18 September 1939, and on numerous other days between 18 September 1939 and 29 May 1945 did aid and assist the enemies of the King by broadcasting to the King's subjects propaganda on behalf of the King's enemies.

    2. William Joyce, on 26 September 1940, did aid and comfort the King's enemies by purporting to be naturalised as a German citizen.

    3. William Joyce, on 18 September 1939 and on numerous other days between 18 September 1939 and 2 July 1940 did aid and assist the enemies of the King by broadcasting to the King's subjects propaganda on behalf of the King's enemies.

    The trial lasted three days: 17,18 and 19 September 1945. The main arguments in the case concerned whether the defendant had a duty of allegiance to the King. If there was no duty of allegiance, then Joyce could not be found guilty of treason. William Joyce did not deny carrying out the alleged acts, he just denied that he owed any allegiance to the King.

    The prosecution accepted that under counts 1 and 2 Joyce did not owe allegiance as he was an American citizen. However, they argued that as he held a British Passport and left the U.K on this passport he had the protection given to passport holders. As protection demands allegiance, Joyce broke this allegiance and committed treason. This point in law was accepted by Mr. Justice Tucker, who ruled that the prosecution's point in law was valid. The judged also directed the jury to find Joyce not guilty of counts 1 and 2.

    Following the judge's ruling, the jury was left with the question of whether Joyce had made the broadcasts between the dates of 18 September 1939 and 2 July 1940 (the period when Joyce's British Passport was valid). They decided that Joyce had made the broadcasts, and they found him guilty of count 3.

    As High Treason carried a mandatory capital sentence, the judge sentenced William Joyce to death by hanging.
     
  5. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    I am sure I never heard any of his broadcasts, but I do remember reading
    about him in the news-papers.

    Looooong time ago !

    Charles
     
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