Brunhilde Pomsel, secretary to Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, dies at 106
Brunhilde Pomsel, a secretary to Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, has passed away in Munich at 106. Her death was confirmed by Roland Schrotthofer, a director of "A German Life," a documentary drawn from dozens of hours of interviews conducted with Pomsel when she was 103. Pomsel was one of the last surviving members of the Nazi hierarchy`s most intimate staff, but she spent all but the final years of her life in obscurity. She became widely known only after the premiere of the documentary. The film, directed by Schrotthofer, Christian Krönes, Olaf S. Müller and Florian Weigensamer, presents an arresting portrait of an ordinary German swept into the Nazi apparatus in her youth, then left to reflect for more than seven decades on her complicity, if any, in its crimes.
Joseph Goebbels` 105-year-old secretary: No one believes me now, but I knew nothing
Brunhilde Pomsel worked at the heart of the Nazis` propaganda machine. As a film about her life is released, she discusses her lack of remorse and the private side of her monstrous boss: "It was rare for us to see him in the mornings. He`d walk up the steps from his little palace near the Brandenburg Gate, on to which his huge propaganda ministry was attached. He`d trip up the steps like a little duke, through his library into his beautiful office on Unter den Linden."
Goebbels` wife had Jewish father, new document shows
The wife of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels had a Jewish father, according to a new document discovered in the Berlin archives. It shows that the father of Magda Goebbels was a Jewish businessman named Richard Friedlander, who married Magda`s mother, Auguste Behrend, when Magda was about 7 years old. Friedlander had an affair in 1901 with Behrend before she married German engineer Oskar Ritshel, who had been blamed for impregnating Behrend before their wedding. Friedlander`s residency card, the document found in the archives, states that Magda is his biological daughter.
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Goebbels`s Secretary Struggles With Her Responsibility
The inner workings of the Nazi power structure have remained an object of fascination. Now, one of the last surviving witnesses has described her experiences in detail, in a documentary film that had its German premiere last week at the Munich Film Festival. The film, `A German Life,` tells the story of Brunhilde Pomsel, who was a secretary for the Nazi propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels. In it, Ms. Pomsel, who is 105 years old, offers an unflinching glimpse into the mentality of a `normal German` in the Nazi era, someone who worked within the system for personal advancement and now is wrestling with her own complicity.
No hope of selling Berlin lakeside villa owned by Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels
History weighs heavily on the German property market, no more so than at a sprawling lakeside villa that once served as a love nest for Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels. Berlin has been trying to sell the - in theory - prime slab of real estate north of the German capital for 15 years. But rather than a gem that the cash-strapped city can liquidate, Berlin has admitted it sees the asset as little more than a millstone around its neck.
A biography reveals the unknown Goebbels: a man obsessed by the fear Hitler was sleeping with his wife
Now, thanks to a new landmark biography, we can see the unknown side of Goebbels — one that not only reveals how he was obsessed with Hitler to the point of madness, but also examines for the first time the details of his personal life and his unlikely role as a Nazi Casanova. The biography by historian Peter Longerich, which draws on the propaganda chief`s extensive private diaries, shows how Goebbels and Magda became part of an extraordinary menage a trois with their beloved Fuhrer, albeit one in which there was no consummation on Hitler`s part. The book makes clear that Goebbels` slavish devotion to his Nazi leader was one-sided. And it shows how it was this bizarre triangular relationship that would lead Goebbels and Magda to follow Hitler to their sordid doom in the heart of Berlin
Legal battles over use of Goebbels diaries
The English version of a Goebbels biography is due soon. The estate of Hitler`s propaganda chief is suing Random House for using excerpts of the Nazi`s journal. Should the heirs of a war criminal get royalties? --- Joseph Goebbels was Hitler`s Propaganda Minister. He kept detailed diaries, which provide an insider`s view of the Nazi regime. In his biography "Goebbels," published in 2010, history professor Peter Longerich included quotes from the diaries. Cordula Schacht, Goebbels` inheritor, claims royalties for the publication of excerpts of his texts. The publisher of the biography, Random House, refuses to do so. Rainer Dresen, the lawyer told DW: "Give money to the heirs of a war criminal? Not in this lifetime!"
Nazi Goebbels` Descendants Revealed as Secret Billionaires
The descendants of one of Nazi Germany`s most prominent figures, Joseph Goebbels, are now secret billionaires, living off the wealth forged during WW2. Joseph Goebbels was one of Hitler`s closest associates serving as a propaganda minister. When the Third Reich collapsed Goebbels and his wife Magda committed suicide. Later, Harald Quandt, the son of Goebbels` wife Magda, received a final goodbye letter from his mother, and he soon realised that his mother had taken her life. Harald and his half-brother Herbert, from father Guenther Quandt`s previous relationship, inherited the family`s industrial empire. Both Harald and Herbert died decades ago, but Harald`s four daughters are billionaires, but keep a very low profile.
Josef Goebbels` Diary - 13th March 1945
From the diary of Germany`s Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda Josef Goebbels, March 13th 1945: `This evening`s Mosquito raid was particularly disastrous for me because our Ministry was hit. The whole lovely building on the Wilhelmstrasse was totally destroyed by a bomb. The throne-room, the Blue Gallery and my newly rebuilt theatre hall are nothing but a heap of ruins. .... In addition, fire has now broken out in the ruins, bringing with it an even greater risk, since 500 bazooka missiles are stored underneath the burning wreckage."
Joseph Goebbels` lakeside love nest goes on sale after being left to rot for more than two decades
On the outside it looks like a charming lakeside villa. But the haunting truth is that this abandoned house in the woods was once owned by Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels - and it is up for sale. Adolf Hitler gave the Haus am Bogensee, the only Nazi residence which has not been demolished, as a gift to Goebbels during World War II. The 70-room complex, nine miles north of Berlin`s city limits, is also where Goebbels indulged in a string of affairs with German starlets who were brought in by Goebbels to replace Jewish actresses at the Babelsberg film studio where he produced his propaganda films.
For sale: the 70-room lakeside villa where Goebbels seduced his Nazi starlets
The lakeside villa was Berlin`s gift to Joseph Goebbels. The infamous Nazi propaganda minister used it as a secret `love nest` in which to consummate his countless affairs. The Nazi minister`s Haus am Bogensee villa survives intact, overgrown and empty in a lost corner of East Germany just 24 miles north of the capital. The Berlin city government, which owns the listed 70-room lakeside complex completed in 1939, has been trying in vain since Germany`s reunification to find a buyer for the Goebbels` villa. But its unsavoury past has deterred prospective investors and Berlin is concerned that neo-Nazis might bid for the complex in disguise.
Photos: Joseph Goebbels (LIFE)
Photo gallery of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels (LIFE)
Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels` step-grandchildren are billionaires
In the spring of 1945, Harald Quandt, a 23-year-old officer in the Luftwaffe, was being held as a POW by Allied forces in Benghazi when he received a farewell letter from his mother, Magda Goebbels -- the wife of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. The hand-written note confirmed the news he had heard weeks earlier: His mother had committed suicide with her husband on May 1, after slipping their 6 children cyanide capsules in Hitler`s underground bunker in Berlin. Quandt was released from captivity in 1947. Seven years later, he and his half-brother Herbert - Harald was the only remaining child from Magda Goebbels` first marriage - would inherit the industrial empire built by their father, Guenther Quandt, which had produced Mauser firearms and anti-aircraft missiles for the Third Reich.
Joseph Goebbels` early letters show controlling behavior
The school papers and dramatic works of college-age Joseph Goebbels reveal a romantic young man beginning to show signs of anti-Semitism and egotistical and controlling behavior, according to a Connecticut auction house selling the pre-war writings of Nazi propaganda minister. Alexander Historical Auctions plans to sell the collection on Sept. 27, saying it may prove invaluable in providing historical and psychological insights. "It sums up the formative years of the number two man in the Third Reich, who was responsible for motivating the masses in Germany to back Hitler. It shows how this rather simple, shy and love-struck college student really just became radicalized," explained Bill Panagopulos, the company`s president.
The pre-war archives of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels for sale
The pre-war archives of Joseph Goebbels, who was with Hitler from the earliest days, will be put on auction in the US. Alexander Autographs is offering the rare archive for a starting price of $200,000. "It is the most important cache of WWII autographs to ever become available for sale. This massive historic grouping contains nearly the entire literary legacy of Joseph Goebbels, heretofore unknown to the general public. It may prove invaluable in providing historical and psychological insights into the mind of Goebeles," says Bill Panagopulos, president of Alexander Autographs.
Joseph Goebbels: Biography by Peter Longerich -- 912-page study of the Nazi Casanova
A new biography of Joseph Goebbels, the limping Nazi propaganda minister, shows him to be a manipulative serial seducer who kept notes of his conquests, like Czech actress Lida Baarova. "Joseph Goebbels: Biography" - by history professor Peter Longerich - uses Goebbels` diaries to explore the mind of one of Hitler`s most trusted henchmen. When the end of the Third Reich came, Goebbels followed Hitler`s example by committing suicide in the fuehrerbunker along with his wife Magda - after first killing their 6 children with sedative and cyanide.
Last days of Hitler`s favourite girl, 12-year-old Helga Goebbels, who was killed in the Berlin bunker
In her new book - Chocolate Cake with Hitler - Emma Craigie reveals the story of 12-year-old Helga Goebbels, who was killed by her parents in the Berlin bunker as the Third Reich collapsed. Helga Goebbels was the oldest of the 6 children taken by their parents into führerbunker on April 22 1945. Faced with the defeat the Nazi Propaganda Minister was determined to die alongside the Führer. Other Nazi leaders protected their children by sending them into the mountains, but Magda Goebbels decided that she and the children would join her husband to bring their lives to "the only possible and honourable conclusion".
Berlin 1945: Red Army officer Viktor Boev called Nazi Propaganda Minister Josef Göbbels
Just hours before the collapse of Nazi Germany in 1945 a Red Army officer had a phone conversation with Josef Goebbels, recalls the memoirs of filmmaker Roman Karmen. While located at Siemensstadt district in Berlin his unit found a phone. The interpreter called the switch-board and asked to connect him with Doctor Goebbels. After a 15m wait they were switched to Reich Minister`s cabinet. --- Interpreter Viktor Boev: "Who is on the phone?" Answer: "The Imperial Minister of Propaganda Doctor Goebbels." Boev: "I would like to ask you a few questions..." Nobody was penalized for the call, and the story became a hit at the soviet frontline.
Nazi propaganda chief Josef Goebbels swastika tapestry sparks row
The tapestry that once belonged to Nazi propaganda genius Joseph Goebbels has set off an ownership dispute after being allegedly smuggled of East Germany in the boot of a car in the 1980s. The 2.27 by 4.18-metre tapestry has been in police evidence vault for two years pending the resolution of an ownership disagreement. "It is one of a triptych of tapestries ordered from by the propaganda ministry in 1943, and finished in 1945. The image shows the sinking of the Nibelung treasure in the Rhine, from the old Norse mythological saga – and there are two swastikas embroidered on the top," explained spokesperson Markus Scharf.
Hitler led henchmen in Kristallnacht riots, newly deciphered Goebbels diary passages show
Adolf Hitler marched his henchmen onto the streets of Munich to perpetrate Kristallnact, deciphered passages from the diaries of Josef Goebbels show. A German scholar has uncovered evidence that on the night of Nov 9 the Führer led Nazis to destroy an important synagogue, on purpose throwing a match into a tinderbox. Historian Angela Hermann has deciphered a mysterious passage in the diary of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels that had baffled scholars ever since this section of Goebbels` diaries was retrieved from Moscow in 1992. The riddle focused on Goebbels` puzzling reference to "Hitler`s Stosstrupp", or Hitler`s "special troops".
The Quandt family trying to explore the Nazi past
In addition to being one of the most important German arms producers during World War II, the Quandt family also had a private link to the Nazis: Guenther Quandt`s first wife Magda Ritschel married Joseph Goebbels. After tv documentary "The Silence of the Quandt Family" recounted the use of Nazi prisoners helped the Quandt family make its fortune, Stefan Quandt explained: "The allegation that the family`s assets can be traced back to the time of the Third Reich defrauds 50 years of ... success ... before the year 1933." The family hired historian Joachim Scholtyseck to research the family history - findings may lead the Quandts to face the skeletons in the family closet.
Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels`s Villa near Berlin taken off the market
A villa near Berlin where Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels entertained young film actresses and singers like Lida Baarova was taken off the market amid fears that right-wing groups might try to purchase it. The city of Berlin, owner of the Waldhof am Bogensee estate, had tried to get at least 2M euros for the villa. Berlin city authorities gave the Waldhof to Goebbels in 1936, 3 years after the Nazi party assumed power in Germany, as a reward for his work as a Gauleiter (regional leader). "What a jewel the house has become, so idyllic and peaceful," Goebbels wrote in his diary on October 29, 1936.
The hideaway Berlin villa used by Joseph Goebbels for sale
The hideaway villa used by the Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels to entertain his lovers is to be put up for sale. The rundown, empty Wald-hof estate, set in woodland 40 kilometres north of the city, has become a burden for the Berlin council. The propaganda minister, in charge of film-making, built a cinema on the premises and invited a string of film starlets to the house, including his mistress Lida Baarová. Other glamorous visitors included the Third Reich actresses Zarah Leander and Marika Rökk. It was not only play for Goebbels. He also wrote his most important speech, calling for Total War, in the study of the house during 1942-1943.
Nazi Propagandist Joseph Goebbels - The Man Behind Hitler documentary (Article no longer available from the original source)
In May 1945, as the Russian army descended on Berlin, Joseph and Magda Goebbels carried out a morbid footnote to World War II. They subdued their 6 children with morphine, then crushed a capsule of cyanide in their mouths. Afterward, the parents committed suicide, their bodies falling not far from the man who led them to rise and ruin: Adolf Hitler. He was educated (a Ph.D. in philosophy), well-versed in the arts and a skilled orator. Goebbels was instrumental in feeding the Nazi machine and kept the German people on a diet of falsehoods. He set up the "burning of the books" -event in 1933.
The Man Behind Hitler: Documentary film profiles Third Reich propaganda minister Josef Goebbels (Article no longer available from the original source)
Documentary "The Man Behind Hitler" offers excerpts from the diary of Nazi propaganda minister Josef Goebbels. Parts of the diary were lost for decades in the Soviet Union. He admired Hitler early, joining his political movement in 1924, soon calling Nazism a religion and expected it to conquer the world. Goebbels told his diary that he loved Magda more than anyone, but that the Nazi Party still came first. He did not confide his affair with film star Lida Baarova, which Hitler ended in 1938. He hated many fellow Nazis - like SA head Ernst Rohm, SS leader Heinrich Himmler and Luftwaffe boss Hermann Goering - but on film he smiles and shakes hands with them.
Hitler`s adoring henchman in his own words - Joseph Goebbels (Article no longer available from the original source)
You could call it "The Prince of Darkness Diaries." Documentarian Lutz Hachmeister uses journals to form a chilling and often illuminating portrait of Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels. Film has nearly continuous narration of the diaries that Goebbels kept 1924-1945, illustrated by archive footage. Goebbels committed suicide in 1945 at age 47. In effect, Goebbels tells his own story in "The Goebbels Experiment." What emerges is an intimate look at the rise and fall of the Third Reich through the eyes of the pretentious, driven figure in charge of Nazi propaganda.
The Goebbels Experiment: Enthralling film of excerpts from Goebbels`s diaries
Entries are spoken over montages of archival footage that span Goebbels`s miserable childhood at the start of the 20th century to his ghastly family suicide in 1945. He loved Germany to death, and he remained a defiant nationalist even as the Allies invaded Berlin. The diary entries the film culls present a man teeming with schadenfreude for all things non-German.
Horst Wessel - Making a martyr
Horst Wessel became a member of the Bismarck-Jugend and joined the Nazi Sturmabteilung (SA Stormtroopers). Horst Wessel was a lowlife, but in death he proved useful to his Reich. After his death, Goebbels set about making a martyr of him with a speech "Die Fahne Hoch!" - Raise high the flag - after the first line of a poem written by Wessel. He was exalted as a example of Nazi virtue; the seedier aspects were played down and his murder was portrayed as National Socialism`s struggle against Marxism. The poem quoted by Goebbels was set to music and became a Nazi anthem and SA marching song: Die Fahne Hoch, Horst Wessel Lied or "The Horst Wessel Song."
Swingtime for Hitler - Banning jazz
A few weeks after Hitler came to power in 1933, the German broadcasting authority announced its intention to ban jazz from the airwaves. It was degenerate, subhuman music, the reasoning went, written by Jews and performed by blacks. Two years later, the authority proudly declared: "As of today, nigger jazz is finally switched off on German radio." Then, in 1940, a jazz band formed in Berlin. The band was the brainchild of propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, and the lyrics were Axis propaganda, meant only for Allied ears. Any Germans caught listening were subject to "very, very severe punishment".
Our Hitler - Goebbels` 1944 Speech on Hitler`s 55th Birthday
"... He will be the man of the century, not his opponents. He gave this century its meaning, its content, its goal. ... He points the way. He commands, we follow. We, his old and tested comrades, march in the first row behind him. We are tested by danger, steeled by misfortune, hardened by storm and trial, but also crowned with the first victories of the coming new world. We are at the head of a countless multitude who carry and defend the future of the Reich. We defend the cause of the nation, which has found its visible form in the Führer. In this battle between life and death, he is and will remain for us what he always was: Our Hitler!"
Of all the devotees of Hitler none sacrificed more than Magda Goebbels (Article no longer available from the original source)
Whereas soldiers offered up their own lives for Hitler, she gave up her six children, and then committed suicide herself. The fact that Hitler admired her, and took her side when Goebbels`s philandering became too blatant, twice saved her marriage. In the absence of a wife for the Führer Magda personify German motherhood. In her last letter (from the Führerbunker) to her son Harald: "Our magnificent idea is finished - and with it everything beautiful, admirable, noble and good that I have known in my life. The world that will come after the Führer and National Socialism is not worth living in, and for that reason I have brought the children here as well."