Axel von dem Bussche-Streithorst

Axel von dem Bussche Baron-Streithorst ( 24 of April of 1919 – 26 of January of 1993 ) was a military German race and decorated member of the resistance anti – Nazi.

He participated in the assassination attempt of Adolf Hitler in coordination with Claus von Stauffenberg , the hero of the anti-Nazi resistance, in November 1943 in Wolfsschanze , Hitler’s headquarters in East Prussia.

Military career

Born in Brunswick of German father and Danish mother, Jenny Lassen. He joined the German Army in 1937 at the age of 18 and was assigned as an officer to the ninth infantry elite regiment ( Infanterie-Regiment 9 in German). In 1942 Captain von dem Bussche happened to witness the massacre of more than 3000 civilians (mostly Jews) carried out by SS and SD at Dubno airport in Ukraine . This experience traumatized him throughout his life and was the cause of his opposition to Hitler. He joined the Group of Resistant Army Center led by Count von Stauffenberg later, in September 1943.

After his experience said that an officer had only three ways to preserve their honor: to die on the battlefield , desertion or revolt. He chose the third alternative, justifying his intention to kill Hitler for the duty to defend others from the illegal and criminal attacks that were taking place.


In November 1943 von dem Bussche, influenced by von Stauffenberg decided to carry out a suicide bombing to kill Hitler. At that time, Hitler was to inspect the army’s new winter uniforms at his Wolfsschanze (Führerhauptquartier) headquarters near Rastenburg in East Prussia (now Poland ). Von dem Bussche, more than two meters tall, blond, blue eyes, planned to show the uniforms with a personal mine, equipped with a hand grenade detonator, tucked into the pocket of his pants. He wanted to detonate the bomb while hugging Hitler , killing both. The plan failed when on November 16, 1943, an Allied air strike destroyed the train with the new uniforms, just the day before the bombing was set. Von dem Bussche returned on 18 November 1943 to his unit on the eastern front .

Von dem Bussche offered to repeat the attempt in February 1944 , when new uniforms were available, but in January 1944 von dem Bussche was seriously injured in Russia and lost a leg. On 11 February, another young officer, Ewald-Heinrich von Kleist-Schmenzin , encouraged by von Stauffenberg, attempted to assassinate Hitler in the same way von von Bussche had planned. Hitler repeatedly canceled and postponed the event that would have allowed von Kleist to carry out the assassination.

Von dem Bussche spent several months in the Waffen-SS hospital in Lychen , so he was not part of the group that carried out the coup launched by von Stauffenberg on 20 July 1944 . Von dem Bussche’s attempts did not come to light during the investigation and none of the officers who knew them betrayed him, so he was one of the military conspirators against Hitler who survived the war.

The post-war

After the war, Axel von dem Bussche studied law at the University of Göttingen and later became a diplomat, working at the German Embassy in Washington from 1954 to 1958. He later became director of the Schule Schloss Salem School founded by Kurt Hahn and situated near Lake Constance in southern Germany.

At the same time he was also a member of the presidency of the German Evangelical Church , adviser to the World Bank and delegate to the United Nations Conference on the Environment in Stockholm in 1972.

In 1950 he married Lady Mildred Camilla Nichola Acheson, the eldest daughter of the Fifth Earl of Gosford and Mildred Carter, who had previously been married to Baron Hans Christoph Schenk von Stauffenberg. Von dem Bussche had two daughters, Nicola Dietzsch-Doertenbach and Jane von dem Bussche who inherited the title of Baroness.

Axel von dem Bussche was cousin of Anders Lassen, danish decorated with the Victory Cross and that fought in the English army to the Germans. Anders Lassen died in combat in 1945, in Italy.

In 1969 he was the godfather of the baptism of Prince Constantine of Orange-Nassau , since he was familiar and friend of his father, Prince Nicholas of Amsberg .


  • Herido en Oro’s Badge
  • German Gold Cross
  • Iron Cross of first and second class
  • Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross (March 7, 1944)
  • Knight of honor of the Order of St. John of the Bailiwick of Brandenburg (1968) 1


  1. Back to top↑ Robert M. Clark, Jr., The Evangelical Knights of Saint John ; Dallas, Texas, USA: 2003; Page 46.