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1900:    born in Saarbrücken (D)

1925:    joins the NSDAP

1931:     Gauleiter of the Koblenz-Trier-Birkenfeld region (D)

1940:    head of the civil administration in Luxembourg

Aug. 1940:    begins germanization and enforcement of policies against Luxembourg’s Jews 

Oct. 1940:     after the failed census, Simon starts to actively fight resistance organizations in Luxembourg; the deportation of Jews from Luxembourg begins

Aug. 1942:    introduces compulsory military service in Luxembourg; has the “general strike” bloodily put down and resettles Luxembourgers

Sept. 1944:    flight to Germany 

1945:     suicide in his cell
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Ich darf Ihnen meinerseits versprechen, dass ich gegen alle, die es wagen würden, gegnerisch hervorzutreten, mit allen Mitteln schärfstens durchzugreifen entschlossen bin. [...] Gegen meine Gegner und die Gegner Deutschlands ist
mir keine Maßnahme hart genug. Wer die Vernichtung Deutschlands will, den werden wir vernichten!

Gustav Simon, Rede zur Gründung der NSDAP in Luxemburg (Escher Tageblatt 222), 22.9.1941.

As head of Luxembourg’s civil administration, Simon was the country’s absolute ruler. His mission was to lead Luxembourg “home to the Reich”. As part of his germanization policy, all democratic institutions in Luxembourg were abolished by the end of 1940. French was banned, as were symbols of French culture such as the beret. French-sounding names, for instance of people and streets, had to be germanized. French citizens and other foreigners were forced to leave the country. At first Jews were also forced to leave, but starting in October 1941 they were deported to ghettos in the East and murdered. Simon wanted to make Luxembourg “judenrein”, or cleansed of Jews. With the help of the Gestapo, he also had political opponents and resistance fighters persecuted and murdered. Their families, the intellectual elite, and families of deserters were resettled in Poland or Czechia, their property confiscated. Under Simon, Luxembourg was de-facto annexed to Germany. Simon left Luxembourg on 9 September 1944, shortly before the country’s liberation. He hid under a false name but was later arrested, and he committed suicide on 18 December 1945.
Official visit of Gauleiter Simon to Diekirch, 26 Oct. 1941
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Es muss in der Geschichte ebenfalls die Lüge von der Selbständigkeit Luxemburgs behandelt werden. Es hat eine Selbstständigkeit nie gegeben.

Gustav Simon, speech to Luxembourg teachers and educators (Luxemburger Wort 304),30 Nov. 1940

Die Sprache des Landes Luxemburg und seiner Bewohner ist seit jeher deutsch.

Gustav Simon, decree on the use of language in Luxembourg, 6 Aug. 1940

With posters like “Stop the foreign gibberish” Gustav Simon tried to convince Luxembourgers that they were German, Luxembourg 7 Aug. 1940
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