As Allied forces blitzed Berlin, Adolph Hitler may have been blitzed himself.
According to author Norman Ohler, whose new book Blitzed: Drugs in the Third Reich, which just recently hit bookstores, Hitler’s general intensity—even nearing the end of his army’s defeat in World War II—was rooted in the drugs he was abusing.
NPR interviewed the author on its Fresh Air show, and his evidence is grounded in Hitler’s private physician’s medical records.
Apparently, Dr. Theo Morell fed drugs to Hitler in three separate phases. First, he was getting vitamins injected intravenously, but after falling ill in 1941, he was dosed with opiates to spring back into form. Then, from about 1943-45, he was given stronger and stronger doses of opiates, basically turning him into an addict. Hitler realized the problem too late and fired the doctor, as the author recounts in this historical record from Hitler’s infamous Bunker:
“Several witnesses who were present in the bunker at that particular moment reported that Hitler shouted at Morell, ‘You have been giving me opiates the whole time! Get out of the bunker and leave me alone.’ So it looks like it came as a revelation to Hitler that he’d been drugging himself in a way, through Morell, the whole time.”
Listen to the entire interview below.