Historical oddities or anomalous news stories especially attracted my interest, lingering in my mind for years to come. I was home, sick, and watching television, sipping an endless stream of the chicken noodle soup that my mother always made for me when I was ill.
My mother sat on the sofa, sewing and watching her shows. Then, the programs were interrupted by the familiar voice of Walter Cronkite, and the news began to break. Like many children in America, I cried that night.
A year or so later when the Warren Report was published and excerpted in almost every newspaper in the country, I remember thinking "bullets just don't do that. Physics was also an interest for me, and another oddity lodged in my mind as I read the standard histories: I thought that was an extremely odd oddity indeed. It seemed to have the same sharp angles and corners as the Warren Commission's "magic bullet".
It just didn't fit. Other odd facts accumulated over the years as if to underline the strangeness of the war's end in general and that fact in particular.
Then, in , the Berlin Wall came down and the two post-war Germanies raced toward reunification. The events seemed to unfold faster than the news media's ability to keep pace. I remember that day too, for I was driving with a friend in his van in Manhattan. My friend was Russian, as was his family, some of whom were veterans of the harsh conflict on the Russian front. We listened to the reports on the radio with a kind of breathlessness and anxiety.
My friend hurried to me and said "Now it will start to come out in the wash. We had often discussed what would happen in the eventuality of German reunification, and were agreed that many things from the end of the war would begin to surface, answering old questions and raising new ones.
Our long talks about World War Two had convinced us that there was much about the war that did not make sense, Hitler's and Stalin's genocidal paranoia notwithstanding. Gradually, and one must say, predictably, the Germans themselves raced to uncover what lay hidden in the formerly inaccessible archival vaults of East Germany and the Soviet Union. Witnesses came forward, and German authors endeavored to come to grips with yet another aspect of the darkest period in their nation's history.
Much, if not all, of their work remains ignored in the USA. This present book is based in part on these Germans' efforts. It, like them, raises dangerous questions, and often presents dangerous and disturbing answers.
As a consequence, while the Nazi regime's "image" becomes even more blackened, the image of the victorious Allies also suffers to a great degree.
This book presents not only a radically different history of the race for the bomb, but also outlines a case that Germany was making enormous strides toward acquisition of a whole host of second and third and even fourth generation weapons technologies even more horrific in their destructive power.
That in itself would not be too unusual. After all, there have been a wealth of books on World War Two German secret weapons projects and their astonishing results.
Those seeking new technical data on these weapons will find some new material here, for the thrust of the book is not on the weapons per se.
Rather, the present work seeks a context within Nazi ideology and in some aspects of contemporary theoretical physics for these projects.
This book argues that the Nazis' quest for this barbarous arsenal of prototypical "smart weapons" and weapons of mass destruction was intimately linked to the Nazi racial and genocidal ideology and war aims, to the machinery, bureaucracy, and technologies of mass death and slavery that the Nazis had perfected. Even more darkly, this relationship points to a hidden core of occult beliefs and practices that, allied with certain very "German" advances in physics, e. Accordingly, this is not a work of history.
But neither is it a work merely of fiction. It is best described as a case of possibilities, of speculative history. It is an attempt to make sense, by means of a radical hypothesis placed within a very broad context, of events during and after the war that make no sense.
I would like to thank Mr. Frank Joseph of Fate magazine for encouraging me to write about these ideas, after he had patiently listened to me outline them while we were both attending a conference in And I would like to thank the many people-too numerous to mention -who listened, read, and critiqued the book along the way.
In fact the German estimate of critical mass of 10 to kilograms was comparable to the contemporary Allied estimate of 2 to The German scientists working on uranium neither withheld their figure for critical mass because of moral scruples nor did they provide an inaccurate estimate as the result of gross scientific error.
Myth, Truth, and the German Atomic Bomb, p. Reich of the Black Sun Chapter 1: Lee Benns, Europe Since In Its World Setting  The end of the Second World War in Europe, at least as normally recounted, does not make sense, for in its standard form as learned in history books that history resembles nothing so much as a badly written finale to some melodramatic Wagnerian opera.
On a night in October , a German pilot and rocket expert by the same of Hans Zinsser was flying his Heinkel twin-engine bomber in twilight over northern Germany, close to the Baltic coast in the province of Mecklenburg. He was flying at twilight to avoid the Allied fighter aircraft that at that time had all but undisputed mastery of the skies over Germany.
Little did he know that what he saw that night would be locked in the vaults of the highest classification of the United States government for several decades after the war. And he certainly could not have been aware of the fact when his testimony finally was declassified near the end of the millennium, that what he saw would require the history of the Second World War to be rewritten, or at the very minimum, severely scrutinized.
His observations on that one night on that one flight resolve at a stroke some of the most pressing questions and mysteries concerning the end of the war. By the same token, what he saw raises many more mysteries and questions, affording a brief and frightening glimpse into the labyrinthine world of Nazi secret weapons development.
His observations open a veritable Pandora's 1. More importantly, his observations also raise the disturbing question of why the Allied governments - America in particular - kept so much classified for so long. What, really, did we recover from the Nazis at the end of the war? But what precisely is that badly written finale? To appreciate how badly written a finale it truly is, it is best to begin at the logical place: There, in the bizarre and surreal world of the Fuhrerbunker, the megalomaniac German dictator huddles with his generals, impervious to the rain of Allied and Soviet bombs that are reducing the once beautiful city of Berlin to piles of rubble.
His left arm shakes uncontrollably and from time to time he must pause to daub the drool that occasionally oozes from his mouth. His complexion is gray and pallid; his health, a shambles from the drugs his doctors inject in him.
His glasses are perched on his nose as he squints at the map before him. The general is questioning the disposition of the forces he sees displayed on the battle map, for it is clear to him that some of Germany's finest and few remaining battle worthy formations are far south, facing Marshal Koniev's forces in Silesia.
These forces were thus, incomprehensibly, poised to make a stiff defense of Breslau and Prague, not Berlin. The general pleads for Hitler to release some of these forces and transfer them north, but 2. Why indeed did Hitler maintain so many German troops in Norway up to the very end of the war? Both Allied and German generals would ponder it after the war, and both would write it off to Hitler's insanity, a conclusion that would become part of the "Allied Legend" of the end of the war.
This interpretation does make sense, for if one assumed that Hitler were having a rare seizure of sanity when he ordered these deployments, what possibly could he have been thinking?
There were no standard or conventional military reasons for the deployments. In other words, the deployments themselves attest his complete lack of touch with military reality. He therefore had to have been quite insane. But apparently his "delusional insanity" did not stop there. On more than one occasion during these end-of-the-war conferences with his generals in the Fuhrerbunker, he boasted that Germany would soon be in the possession of weapons that would snatch victory from the jaws of defeat at "five minutes past midnight.
They did in fact "do without" and yet managed to put up a fierce resistance against overwhelming odds in the initial stages of Zhukov's final offensive on Berlin. The standard versions, of course, are that he wished to maintain the supply line of iron ore from Sweden to Germany, and that he wished to continue to use the country as a base to interdict the lend-lease supply route to Russia.
But by late , with the huge losses of the German Kriegsmarine, these explanations no longer were militarily feasible, and hence do not make military sense. One must look for other reasons, if indeed there are any beyond Adolph Hitler's delusions. And above all, it must hold Prague and lower Silesia. Of course, the standard historical interpretation of these and similar utterances by the Nazi leadership near the end of the war explains them - or rather, explains them away - by one of two standard techniques.
Sir Roy Fedden, one of the British Specialists sent to Germany to investigate Nazi secret weapons research after the war, left no doubt as to the deadly potential these developments held: In the course of two recent visits to Germany, as leader of a technical mission of the Ministry of Aircraft Production, I have seen enough of their designs and production plans to realize that if they had managed to prolong the war some months longer, we would have been confronted with a set of entirely new and deadly developments in air warfare.
For example, to make the insanity gripping the Reich government complete, Hitler's ever-faithful toady and propaganda minister, Dr. Josef Gobbels also boasted in a speech near the end of the war that he had seen "weapons so frightening it would make your heart stand still.
But on the Allied side of the Allied Legend, things are equally peculiar. In March and April of , U. Patton's Third Army is literally racing across southern Bavaria, as fast as is operationally possible, making a beeline for: The Third Army's movements, so the story goes, were designed to cut off the "escape route" of Nazis fleeing the carnage of Berlin.
Maps are produced in old history books, accompanied in some cases by de-classified German plans-some dating from the Weimar Republic! However, there is a problem with that explanation. Allied aerial reconnaissance would likely have told Eisenhower and SHAEF that there were precious few fortified strong points in the "National Redoubt".
Indeed, it would have told them that the "Redoubt" was no redoubt at all. General Patton and his divisional commanders would most certainly have been privy to at least some of this information. So why the extraordinary and almost reckless speed of his advance, an advance the post-war Allied Legend would have us believe was to cut off the escape route of Nazis fleeing Berlin, who it turns out weren't fleeing, to a redoubt that didn't exist?
Then, remarkably, in a strange twist of fate, General Patton himself, America's most celebrated general, dies suddenly, and, some would say, suspiciously, as a result of complications from injuries he sustained in a freak automobile accident soon after the end of the war and the beginning of the Allied military occupation.
For many, there is little doubt that Patton's death is suspicious. Arnstadt is where the great German composer and organist J. Bach first began his career. Some propose he was eliminated because of his remarks about turning the Germans "right back around" and letting them lead an Allied invasion of Russia.
Others believe he was eliminated because he knew about the Allies' knowledge of the Soviets' execution of British, American, and French prisoners of war, and threatened to make it public. In any case, while Patton's barbed tongue and occasional outbursts are well known, his sense of military duty and obligation were far too high for him to have entertained such notions. These theories play out best, perhaps, on the internet or in the movies.
And neither seems a sufficient motivation for the murder of America's most celebrated general.