Martin Niemoeller was a German Protestant
pastor. During the First World War
, he was commander
of a U-Boat
. He was also pro-Nazi
until they seized control of the churche
In 1937 he was arrested for rebellious sermons and sentenced to seven months in prison. After his release he was arrested again and stayed in concentration camps until the end of the Second World War.
This oft-repeated quote of his says something important:
"They came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up."
(I found several versions of this quote on the Internet and finally decided on this one)