Goering’s Brother Saved Jews’

Albert Goering, the brother of Nazi mastermind Hermann who planned the murder of millions of Jews, risked his life to save Jews in the Holocaust.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu, | updated: 09:48

Albert Goering - the good brother
Albert Goering - the good brother
Israel news photo

While Nazi mastermind Hermann Goering was planning the deaths of millions of Jews, his brother Albert used his family name to save Jews from the evil regime, a new book called ”Thirty-Four” reveals.

The story of Albert Goering was little known until the appearance of the book by William Hastings Burke, who relates several details of Albert’s heroic deeds for the first time. His story had been shoved into obscurity, despite documents in British archives.

The Nazis' “Final Solution” disgusted Albert, who opposed the Nazi regime from its early days, even braving the daring act of refusing to return the Nazi salute when he worked in the Exports Department during the German occupation of Czechoslovakia. After death camps were built, he drove to a camp, where he acted heroically in loading hundreds of Jews into a truck and freeing them in forests.

Albert served time in prison after the war because his last name was enough for investigators to refuse to accept his story as true. He eventually was freed after a further probe unearthed personal testimony from Jews whom he saved. Jews who remembered or heard of his life-saving deeds helped him to survive after his release from jail until he died in Munich in 1966.

In his book, Burke relates that Albert reputedly was fathered by a wealthy Jewish Austrian doctor who had an affair with Goering’s mother. Hermann, who eventually directed the Luftwaffe and suggested himself as a replacement for Hitler towards the end of the Nazi regime, was the opposite of Albert’s quiet and sensitive personality.

While Hermann (pictured) was a national celebrity after he won aerial battles in World War I and commanded the Gestapo police in 1933, Albert fled to Austria to escape the regime. Burke relates that in Vienna, Albert saw Nazis forcing old Jewish women to scrub floors. He took the place of one of the women and also scrubbed. The incident was glossed over when SS forces intervened and saw his papers with his last name, which he used several times to escape certain death for helping and saving Jews.

Albert and Hermann “were political and ideological rivals on the streets, but in their private world, they remained devoted brothers,” Burke wrote in “Thirty-Four,” which is the number on Albert’s list of Jews whom he saved.

During a family holiday, when Albert heard the news of the Nazi occupation of Austria that included shipping an elderly archduke of the Austrian royal family to the Dachau death camp, his brother Hermann offered him one wish. Albert wrote, 'I wished for the immediate release of the old Archduke.” Hermann freed the royal family member the following day, and Albert wrote him down as number 12 on his list.

Hermann’s fondness for Albert resulted in the cancellation of an order for his arrest. However, after Albert used a large truck to rescue Jews from a death camp, the Nazi regime issued an order to kill him. Albert fled to a safe house. After the war, he presented himself to American authorities.

Hermann committed suicide, and Albert eventually rejoined his family until he died of cancer.