The Reich Security Main Office (RSHA)

The duties of the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA), or Reich Main Security Office, involve protecting the security of the Reich and undertaking intelligence and counter-intelligence operations. It also has responsibility for performance of civil policing functions, administration of the Identity Magic system and some specific security garrison and protection work at key installations and facilities, including all Reich Embassies outside the Fatherland. It’s brief includes the suppression of all internal opponents of the regime, extending the regime beyond the borders of the Fatherland and Magica Superior, and a number of activities designed to secure a hold over those territories and populations which, through military conquest, come under Reich domination.

There is a close collaboration between the SD, the Gestapo, the Forstapo and the police forces, but there is little doubt who is in charge of the operation as a whole.The Reichsführer-SS also appoints the Reichs-SS representative to the Cabinet (a position currently occupied by Brigadeführer Artur Dedrick), who acts as his eyes and ears within the government.

Amt 4: The Security Police – Sicherheitsdienst (the SD, or Sipo)

Commanded by the Oberstgruppenführer-SD, but overseen by the Reichsführer-SS, this body is the main intelligence gathering network within the Reich lands, and also has responsibility for counter-intelligence and certain covert operations. Its task is to obtain information concerning the actual and potential enemies of the Reich, so that appropriate action can be taken to destroy or neutralise opposition. It achieves this through an organisation of agents and informants operating out of various SD regional offices established throughout the Reich and the Outer Reich, as well as staging operations through which the security of the Reich can be enhanced. It also monitors the loyalty of State officials.

Tristan Heydrich, Chef der Sicherheitspolizei und des SD (CSSD), KSS (W)

Tristan Heydrich has been a loyal servant of the Reich for many years, initially serving with distinction in the Ausland-Heer, attaining the rank of Generalmajor, but was invited to move across to the SS in RY071. Herzog Rupert introduced him to Berlin over a century and a half ago, yet he does not appear to have aged significantly over that time. He served as second in command of the SD to Jürgen Kessler for many years, during which he was strongly involved in the day-to-day running of that organisation, and was Kessler’s natural successor as CSSD when the latter returned to the field to lead the campaigns in Veils 4-6 in RY100.

Heydrich is a tall man, standing around 6’2″ and has the build of an athlete. He is a skilled fencer and successful long-distance runner, and like Herzog Delatz, enjoys flying and hunting, as well as music (he is a noted violinist). He is married to Veronika, who holds a position within the Reich Chancellery, and they have two adult children: an unmarried daughter, Elise, who is Governor of the Reichsbank; and a son, Markus, a Brigadeführer in the Waffen-SS, who is married with children of his own. Tristan has also been known to visit the Lebensborn facilities in Berlin, and has three acknowledged Lebensborn children: Divine Emissary Silke von Halle, KSS (S);  Brigadeführer Adam Cornelius; and Obersturmbannführer Emil Thorsten.

He holds the Uradel title of Landgraf von Halle, and has been an Knight of the SS since RY093.

Amt 5: The Geheime Staatspolizei (Gestapo)

The Geheime Staatspolizei is the official State secret police force within the Reich. Its role is to investigate and combat “all tendencies dangerous to the State”, with authority to investigate treason, espionage (in conjunction with the SD) and sabotage, as well as criminal attacks on the Reich. It  has the power to invoke “protective custody” – habeas corpus does not exist within the Reich – allowing it to imprison people without judicial proceedings, often in concentration camps. Gestapo officers are often found on the front-line worlds in the wars with the enemies of the Reich.

While the SD is very much an agency of the Imperial Council, and the RSHA itself,  the Gestapo is an organisation whose loyalty is at least in part to the Reichstag and the wider State, although the majority of its funding is courtesy of SS Amt 2.

Obergruppenführer-SD Diederick Schneider, KSS (S)

Schneider is the son of Herzog Hans Schneider, brother of Wilhelm von Frankfurt (the former Grossherzog before his death in a zeppelin accident some years ago), and his wife Aster and was born in RY090. Both his parents are serving SS officers, his father in the Waffen-SS and his mother in the Reichs-SS, although she did spend a time in Sable custody after a failed mission. He is Talented and studied magic at Berlin Mage College, before going to Bad Tölz. After graduating from officer training at the top of his class, he interned with several departments, as well as furthered his magical studies, before discovering a flair for intelligence work. He then spent some years as a field agent, before returning to Berlin when he was appointed as department head with responsibility for the Holstein Group.

Once back in Berlin, he proved his skill as an analyst, as well as an agent, and Tristan Heydrich acknowledged his abilities by recommending him for promotion. He was appointed head of Amt 7 in RY134 on the death of his predecessor, Fritz Sonnenfeld, and was admitted as a Member of the Order of the Knights of the SS around the same time. He was made a Companion in RY140, as well as being promoted to Gruppenführer, and became a full Knight of the Summer Circle in RY143. He and Tristan Heydrich have a decent working relationship. His promotion to become head of Amt 5 was put through in late-June RY154, after his predecessor, Maximillien Hauer, was transferred to Sanguine.

Schneider is married to Marizia, a mid-level civil servant, and they have a young daughter and a new-born son.

Amt 6: The Non-Military Police Forces

Ordnungspolizei (Orpo) – Reichspolizeidirektor Mahael von Klaus

This is the Reich regular police force, and maintains its original police uniforms, rather than SS ones. It has its own commanding officer and recruits its own people, but is technically under the command of the RSHA. Orpo officers deal with day-to-day policing: picking up drunks, traffic violations, fighting fires, patrolling the transport system, answering emergency calls, etc, although more serious crimes are then referred upwards to the Kripo. Reichspolizeidirektor von Klaus, a younger brother of the Fürst von Dresden, also holds the SS rank of Gruppenführer.

Identitätspolizei (Ido) – Reichspolizeidirektor Philip Metz

The Identitätspolizei is responsible for the registration, administration, maintenance and enforcement of the Reich ID system, which was developed from the Aurellis ID system after the Reich was attached to the Aurellis Transport System. There was initially some dispute whether administration of the ID System should fall under the Ahnenerbe or the RSHA. The latter won the discussion. Everyone within the Reich is given an ID bracelet on their 14th birthday, which cannot be removed without significant effort. Attempts to alter ID bracelets, in any way, or remove them, are liable to punishment (as enforced by the Ido). For shapeshifters, the bracelets also act as their Forstapo registration, and thus the Ido co-operates with that organisation as well. All points of entry to Reich territory include Ido offices at the border for the administration of visitor ID.

Its commander, Philip Metz, is one of the foremost ID mages in the Reich. He formerly worked for Dirk Weber in the Ahnenerbe, where he was in charge of the department dealing with new and recently-located technology. Reichspolizeidirektor Metz also holds the SS rank of Gruppenführer.

Kriminalpolizei (Kripo) – Reichskriminaldirektor Beata Dietrich

The Kripo is the higher ranking of the more traditional police forces which still exist within the Reich, and many of its operative are plain clothes, rather than uniformed. It deals with crimes such as burglary, bank robberies, violent assaults, fraud, rape and murder. Its investigators hold rank in the SS – Obersturmführer, Hauptsturmführer or Sturmbannführer – in conjunction with their more usual ranks of Kriminalassistent, Kriminalinspektor, Kriminalkommissar, etc. Its commander, Beata Dietrich, is one of the highest-ranked woman in the RSHA, currently, holding the rank of Obergruppenführer as well as her police title. The Herzogin von Bremen is a former Kriminalkommissar.

Department 7: The Ausland-SD (Außerhalb)

Like the Waffen-SS, with the establishment of Sanguine, the Ausland-SD was split into Outside and Inside branches, which hold equal status within the RSHA organisation. The previous incumbent as Head of Amt 7, was Diederick Schneider, before he became Head of the Gestapo in late-June RY150. He was replaced by Oberstgruppenführer Jorge von Raeder, who is based in Sanguine.

While the Ausland-SD (Außerhalb) is technically a branch of the Sicherheitsdienst, given that the organisation operates Outside, it has greater autonomy from the RSHA, as a whole, than the Innerhalb branch. Its commander is the next-highest ranked officer on Sanguine behind the Reichsprotektor. The Außerhalb department has responsibilities for external intelligence gathering and operations on the Outside.

Department 8: The Ausland-SD (Innerhalb)

The Ausland-SD (Innerhalb) is responsible for external intelligence gathering and operations on the Inside. Given its geographical scope, it has a certain degree of autonomy from the internal security police. Prior to the split, the Head of Ausland-SD was effectively second-in-command of the Sicherheitsdienst as a whole, but the Außerhalb commander now has precedence over the Innerhalb commander, which has caused some friction.

Obergruppenführer-SD Eugen Kurtz

Kurtz was appointed to his current position in July RY156.

Amt 9: The Formannehmen Staatspolizei (Forstapo)

Since RY118, this branch of the RSHA has been under the direct control of Rupert Delatz, through his deputy Dominik Gerlinde. In the early days, its purpose was to identify shapeshifters within the Reich, the Aussenhandel worlds and the disputed territories, such that they can be watched, and imprisoned, if necessary, if they demonstrated a threat to the State. It was and remains the only RSHA organisation which knowingly employs shifters, on the theory of what know your enemy, and all its members are specially trained in techniques for capturing and imprisoning shifters.

With the changes to the Shapeshifter Laws in January RY108, the Forstapo’s purview was extended to include the regulation and registration of admitted shapeshifters within the Reich proper. Shapeshifting children are now identified young and their parents are encouraged to give them into the custody of the State, so they can be brought up within the Lebensborn System and taught how to use their abilities responsibly. Although this is not obligatory, those that choose to do so are compensated handsomely. Whether or not a shapeshifting child was brought up by the State or their parents, they are obliged to include Forstapo registration in their ID bracelets which are given to all Reich residents on their 14th birthday.

In addition, when the Reich was first connected to the Aurellis Transport System, in March RY107, the Forstapo monitored and licensed Pilots. These duties were later superseded with the establishment of the semi-independent Reich Pilots Guild, which was established in RY118.

Oberstgruppenführer Dominik Gerlinde, KSS (W)

Like many of the senior SS commanders, Dominik Gerlinde was brought up primarily within the Lebensborn System. There was a brief period in his youth when he lived elsewhere, but he returned to the Bremen Lebensborn Centre before his tenth birthday and remained there for the rest of his childhood. He did his State Service with the SS before going to university to study medicine, where he graduated near the top of his year. He continued his training at the SS medical facility attached to the Waffen-SS officer training centre at Bad Tölz. However, after he qualified as a doctor, he returned to the front lines, working with the Forstapo, and quickly came to the attention of its then-commander, Johan Hartwin (now deceased). When the Aurellis Transport System was first brought to the Reich, Gerlinde was placed in charge of its administration and that of its Pilots, and initiated as the first Reich-born Grand Pilot.

Rather to the surprise of many, when Johan Hartwin stepped down as head of the Forstapo in June RY118, it was Gerlinde who was appointed to replace him, rather than Hartwin’s official deputy, Gruppenführer Dirk Weber, KSS. No official announcement was made regarding the reasons for this decision. Gerlinde was inducted as a Knight of the SS at the Winter Solstice RY123. In December RY153 he was given the Lower Nobility title of Fürst von Wardenburg, with lands in the province of Bremen, in recognition of services to the Fatherland. Towards the end of the same month he was seriously injured in an assassination attempt, but survived and initially returned to duty at reduced rank. He was restored to his previous rank at the end of June RY154. He is known to hate Jorge von Raeder, the head of Ausland-SD (Außerhalb), with a passion.

Dominik has been married to Silke von Halle since December SY123, and they have three children: twin sons, Michel and Markus, born in RY127 and a daughter, Antonia, born RY135. All three are Talented. Michel is currently serving with the Waffen-SS, Markus is a Priest of Protetion, and Antonia just started non-military State Service. Dominik is a relatively frequent visitor to Sanguine, and Silke travels Inside as frequently.

Obergruppenführer Josef Linz, KSS (S)

Operational command of the Forstapo devolved to Gerlinde’s effective second-in-command, Josef Linz, during his superior’s convalescence, and given the competence he displayed during that period, he has now been permanently reassigned to Berlin from his previous position as as head of the Forstapo in the Bayern Group of the Aussenhandel der Reichsverband. He is a few years younger than his commander, and the younger of twins, his elder brother being Cornelius, who serves with the Waffen-SS (Außerhalb). He is strongly Talented, and while he completed his State Service with the Ausland-Heer, after studying for his Bachelors in Magic at the Armed Forces Mage College, he was invited to join the SS. He served with the Waffen-SS for some time, before doing his Masters at the SS-Schule Haus, and then transferred across to the Forstapo. He later achieved his Doctorate, with a speciality in healing magic and genetics, and worked in the Forstapo medical facility for a while before returning to active duty in the field. He was honoured as one of the Summer Circle Knights of the SS with the establishment of that group in RY130.