“Bringing Down the Butcher of Prague: The Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich" at the German American Heritage Center -- April 8.

Sunday, April 8, 2 p.m.

German American Heritage Center, 712 West Second Street, Davenport IA

Held in conjunction with the 76th anniversary of one of history's most daring and controversial episodes of espionage, Kirkwood Community College professors Dr. Robinson Yost and Dr. Laura Yost deliver their April 8 presentation “Bringing Down the Butcher of Prague: The Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich” at Davenport's German American Heritage Center, offering insight into the killing of one of World War II's foremost Nazi officials.

At the start of the war, Heydrich became commander of the consolidated Reich security forces, which he formed into the Reich Security Central Office of the SS. Heydrich had also become a major figure in the rounding up and planned extermination of Europe's Jews, and on his orders, the SS Einsatzgruppen were created for the purpose of hunting down, rounding up, and exterminating Jews in Poland and Russia. Aware of how powerful and dangerous Heydrich was, British intelligence agents put together an operation designed to kill him, and trained and dispatched three Czech exiles to Prague.

The assassination was subsequently carried out, and the Yosts, in their German American Heritage Center presentation, will examine the political and military context of this act of Czech resistance code-named Operation Anthropoid. They will also discuss the details of precisely who planned it, approved it, and carried it out, explain the consequences of the resistance, highlight locations in Prague that memorialize the men who sacrificed their lives, and recount how this dramatic story has been retold on film, most recently in 2016's Anthropoid. At Kirkwood, Robinson Yost teaches all four of the Western Civilization courses as the college's one full-time European historian, and Laura teaches Modern World Military History and the Holocaust and Genocide in Modern Memory & Literature.

“Bringing Down the Butcher of Prague: The Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich” will be presented at 2 p.m. on April 8, and the program is free with $3-5 general admission. For more information on this and other Heritage Center events and exhibits, call (563)322-8844 or visit GAHC.org.

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