By late 1944, Nazi Germany was facing Allied armies to the west and six million Soviets to the east. Overhead, Allied planes were hitting Germany with near-constant city-leveling bombing raids.
But at grim military briefings, generals found German dictator Adolf Hitler upbeat, optimistic — euphoric even.
“I call it the Fuhrer-high; it makes you feel on top of the world even if the world is collapsing around you,” said German author Norman Ohler, speaking to the National Post by phone.
Ohler’s book, Blitzed, will be released in Canada on October 6. Published in the original German as The Total Rush, it tells the story of how Nazi Germany fought a surprising amount of the Second World War in a drug-fueled haze.
“It’s tough out here … today I’m writing you mainly to ask for some Pervitin,” wrote German soldier Heinrich Böll in a 1939 letter home from occupied Poland. It was one of at least three letters that Böll, a future Nobel Prize-winning author, would write home requesting a top-up of his Pervitin stash.
Pervitin, a popular over-the-counter drug in Nazi Germany, was a close cousin of modern-day crystal meth. Methamphetamines originated in Germany in the late 1800s, and Pervitin first hit the market as a “wakefulness pill.” (more..)
Hitler was on cocaine and his troops were on meth: Author reveals deep influence of drugs in Nazi Germany