Wednesday 13 December 2017

Diary of SS prisoner sheds light on Hitler's routine

Joe Sinclair in London

Hitler enjoyed bread and marmalade for breakfast and was "mild" mannered during personal exchanges, according to newly released documents.

But the Fuhrer also hated to be looked at, complained about his health, and was prone to banging tables during meetings, the files made public in Britain's National Archives reveal.

A 19-year-old Austrian deserter provides a detailed description of the time Hitler spent at his retreat in Obersalzberg in the Bavarian Alps.

Describing his arrival between December 1943 and February 1944, prisoner of war SS Schutze Obernigg says: "Hitler was grey and bent, but wore a very satisfied expression. He is mild on personal contact but apt to bang tables and shout during conferences."

The 19-year-old also details the Fuhrer's daily routine, saying he would get up at about 10am. He would be seen by his barber, a "small, rather bald, stout" man who "looks like a circus clown". He would then go for a walk.

The deserter adds: "Hitler cannot bear to feel himself watched, and if he sees an SS man following him about he shouts at him 'If you are frightened, go and guard yourself'.

The Fuhrer apparently breakfasted between 11am and 11.30am on coffee, bread and marmalade. In the afternoon, he would receive visitors, including his doctor, "artists and other personalities". Other characters in his entourage included his secretary, described as "about 24, brunette, attractive, slim".

Hitler travelled with an escort of never less than three cars and "always sits next to the driver". He would work until 10pm, dine between 1 and 1.30am and sleep as late as 4am.

Another prisoner of war describes Hitler after the attempt on his life on July 20 1944, saying: "Hitler did not look well; his face was pale and covered with loosely hanging flesh. Hitler himself complained that his doctors were a bad lot."

Irish Independent

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