The leading head of the Reich citizens, who are believed to be planning a coup d’etat, is a member of an old noble family. Prince Henry XIII Reuss probably wanted to become German head of state. Who is the man?

“30 years ago, he was a very modern, up-to-date, spirited entrepreneur,” says a shocked Prince Heinrich XIV Reuss-Köstritz on Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk (MDR) about his distant relative, Prince Heinrich XIII. Reuss. Since then, however, he has probably radicalized himself through disappointments. However, he could not imagine that he was the ringleader of a conspiracy.

But that’s exactly what the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office apparently accuses the 71-year-old prince of. He is said to be the head of the political arm of a group of Reich citizens, 25 of whom were arrested in a series of large-scale raids on Wednesday. They are said to have planned a coup d’état to make Germany a monarchy again. With Henry XIII. as head of state.

The prince of the old noble house of the Reussen had made no secret of his world views for a long time. A speech he gave in 2019 at the Worldwebforum 2019 in Zurich documents this impressively. It is unclear why he was allowed to present his theories there for a quarter of an hour – apparently supported by loosely composed anecdotes. Because with the business congress, the organizers may want to revolutionize the digital world, but not Germany.

Nevertheless, Henry XIII. undisturbed about the fact that the German state allegedly ceased to exist as a sovereign subject under international law in 1918 and that the separation of powers in the Federal Republic is an illusion and politics is a spectacle. It should be concealed in such a way that ominous circles of financial power turned Germany into their money printing machine after the defeat in the First World War.

Anyone who has dealt with the Reich citizens knows that this is roughly the common denominator of the scene. But in his Zurich speech, Reuss also gives insights into his personal motives: namely the history of his family. This is “a dispossessed dynasty after 1000 years of rule,” he says.

In fact, the aristocratic house of Reuss – which is also relatively unknown in Germany – is an old family steeped in tradition. Around 1100 Henry IV – the Roman-German emperor who made the famous penance to Canossa – made the family feudal lords. That’s why, by the way, all male family members are called by that name to this day.

From the 12th century, the Reussen ruled in several lines as bailiffs over various territories in today’s federal states of Bavaria, Thuringia and Saxony as well as on the territory of today’s Czech Republic. The Thuringian “Vogtland” owes its name, which is still used today, to this fact. From 1329, the Reussen ruled with the rank of prince and thus belonged to the high nobility. Diplomats and officers as well as a Grand Master of the Teutonic Order emerged from the family. And now a conspiracy teller.

Like all German and Austrian nobles, the Russians lost their claims to power after the end of World War I in 1918. Prince Henry XXVII. Reuss, grandfather of the XIII, abdicated. The People’s State of Reuss emerged from the Reussian areas, which in 1920 was merged into the newly founded Free State of Thuringia. In 1945, the communist leadership in the Soviet occupation zone confiscated her possessions in what later became the GDR, and the family was thus dispossessed.

Although he himself was only born in 1955, Henry XIII. apparently never got over this. As if it wasn’t just about him and the (family) property, Reuss spoke in Zurich of the happiness of the people who lived under the linearly structured rule of his family and the unhappiness of those who were now at the mercy of the “Kafkaesque conditions of democracy”. be.

However, he complained to the Worldwebforum that he had tried in vain for decades at great financial expense to regain confiscated property through legal channels. Today he seems to believe that the legal battle for the expropriated goods has always been futile because, in his opinion, the judiciary and legal profession in Germany are in cahoots with the alleged sham government.

In fact, Henry XIII. probably spent a lot of time and money, for example to buy back the Waidmannslust hunting lodge, which is said to have served as a meeting place for the alleged subversives. He also conducted court cases for the former properties on behalf of his mother, who died in 2019. However, he was not quite as unsuccessful as he claims. In 2008 they were awarded Thallwitz Castle in Saxony.

Other family members were also successful with restitution claims. In response to a lawsuit filed by the branch, which also includes Prince Heinrich XIV, the administrative court in Köstritz recognized in 2002 that the expropriation of the (partially demolished) castle and park there was unlawful.

From the approximately 60-strong family association, it is said from the noble house, Prince Heinrich XIII. withdrawn in 2008. Already after the speech in Zurich, Prince Heinrich XIV. Reuss-Köstritz “massively distanced himself,” he told MDR.

The head of the family showed the same reaction after an incident in August this year at the market festival in Bad Lobenstein, Thuringia. Prince Henry XIII was there with the AfD member of parliament Uwe Thrum and the then mayor of Thomas Weigelt when the latter suddenly attacked a journalist who was reporting on the Reich citizen scene.

According to MDR, the agile real estate entrepreneur, says Prince Heinrich XIV, has apparently become “a confused old man” who “is caught in conspiracy theory misconceptions”.

The original of this post “The “confused man” who wanted to rule the “German Reich” comes from Deutsche Welle.