Daily archives: November 19, 2005

Inside Hitler's Bunker

There are moments of pitch black comedy, and even farce, in Joachim Fest’s account of the final days of the battle for Berlin.

Soviet General Chuikov was caught off guard by a German delegation to discuss surrender or ceasefire terms and was without his senior staff. Uniformed members of his immediate entourage had to stand in. A civilian composer, there to write about the liberation of Berlin, was stuck in an antechamber and told to remain absolutely quiet. As the debate dragged on, the composer eventually passed out and fell out of the closet. He was carried away, and no-one present thought to mention the strange event.

The book also has some interesting observations on Hitler’s character, that fit well with the back story for my in-development webcomic. Both Hitler and Goebbels spoke at different times of how, when they fell, they would take the German people, and as many others as possible, with them. “Hitler’s bomb” is a popular conspiracy/ alternate history theory. It is entirely conceivable that Hitler, in possession of an atomic bomb but surrounded and unable to launch it at Moscow, London or Manhattan would detonate it as Russian forces approached. This leads directly to the situation at the start of the story, with the the city a mass grave and memorial to the greatest crime of all time and the Berlin wall going around the city to keep scavengers and trophy hunters out and a lot of secrets in.

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