Hitler’s Closest Seven Followers
Many people of the author’s generation, i.e., those who entered the world at the tail end of World War II, received a lot of narratives by parents who heard about the war from a third source, if you so will. The Gold Coast was a British Colony, and she was at war with Hitler’s Germany, a war provoked by Hitler’s invasion of Poland on 1st September, 1939. Britain and France “declared war on Germany there and then.” This war would last six solid years.
Stories of WWII were told to children of the Gold Coast, by parents, at other times by teachers in schools, and yet again, by people who in the communities were called “scholars.” These were mostly men, who by dint of some luck, had entered school and left (i.e. concluded) at what was then designated as “standard seven.” They spoke English and had access to information through reading, and also listening into the “BBC” (the British Broadcasting Corporation), which one would ‘catch’ if one possessed a wireless radio, with ‘short wave.”
Stories told about the war, and therefore, Hitler himself, were many and varied. One such narrative went like this: “Sir Winston Spencer Churchill, the War-time British Prime Minister, had reached the end of his wits looking for a way to ‘finish-of’ Hitler. Not even a bomb could destroy Hitler. His body was impenetrable,” so went the tales. The impression we the kids had got was that it was a conflict in which Churchill and Hitler “shot at each other.” Then was a Nigerian civil servant of the “West African Railways”, according to another narrative, who was stationed at Takoradi. He had said openly in Pigeon English; “Germany dey win the war.”
He was in court, convicted, and spent three months in incarceration for insulting the British Crown! The rest of the “soup” about the war and Hitler came from the ex-service men, some of whom had reached as far as Burma, fighting for the British Crown. They told juicy stories about Hitler’s war. They had died and had been resurrected, so it seemed. A decade-and-half later, Ghanaian young men and women with requisite qualifications from Ghanaian schools wishing to learn, were offered scholarships to study in various career-directions in Germany (East and West, one Capitalist, the other Communist).
Materials about Adolf Hitler, who from the position of a democratically elected Chancellor in 1933, had turned into an absolute ruler only a year later, is the eerie narrative, part of which “Hitler’s closest seven followers” try to tell in the form of an introduction to a world saga, which “the youth” sadly seem to be glossing over. Rudolf Hess, who was born in Alexandria, Egypt, but of pure Bavarian blood, had met Hitler by chance in Munich. Horoscope, in which both men were ardent believers, is said to have been a component of whatever it was that brought them like lead and magnet together. Hess later became the “Fuehrer’s” Deputy.
Then was the young Architect, born in the German city of Mannheim, whose name was Albert Speer. He came from upper-middle class surroundings. Readers may be reminded that Hitler had an irresistible love for Architecture, but as a young man, he could not be admitted into such a school in Austria, a mishap in his life, for which he would then and forever blame “the Jewish monopoly, or even hegemony in Vienna.” The young Speer ascended, without much effort, to be among Hitler’s best friends, if not indeed the best of his friends, as Cabinet Minister (at one time, he alone, held five Cabinet posts). Hitler and Speer would visit the finest of restaurants in Berlin in the evenings, and plan “together” to build Berlin into an Olympiad for 1936, never before seen anywhere else. Hitler would tell Mrs. Speer, “You know, Mrs. Speer, your husband, is raising ARCHITECTURAL STRUCTURES never seen in Europe since one thousand years.” He, Hitler, had seen in Speer, the man he wished he had become himself – a super-architect!
Then, there was Konstantin von Neurath, Hitler’s beloved Foreign Minister. He was well placed with Adolf. He was a German whose family members “wore blue stockings.” Hitler had a liking for nobility that people could not fully understand, knowing whence he came, and the parole with which he reached power – the working class!
Walter Funk was the elderly Financier who became Hitler’s Finance Minister. He kept Gold ingots collected from dentures from vanquished KZ-INMATES, which he planned to deposit in Swiss banks to add to family treasure, when the war would come to an end. His 36-room family home in Nuremberg had raised Queen Victoria of England when she was a “maiden”. One member of the commission of high-ranking American military officers who examined the case of the “TRIAL OF THE SEVEN”, pre-trial, confessed to a colleague, “the most impressive home I have ever encountered.” Karl Donitz had impressed Hitler in a way not many could understand.
Hitler included him in his will.
Erich Raeder, the feared sub-marine torpedo wizard, was also part of Hitler’s will, as the “core” came to read it after April 30th, 1945. Arrogant Baldur von Schirach held the position of “Hitler-Jugend”, Hitler Youth. Much as ADOLF hated Communism, it was observed he was impressed by the stand of the youth in the young Soviet Union at the time. Baldur von Schirach, (one of the two young men among Hitler’s innermost core, the other being Albert Speer), was a dedicated follower of Hitler’s cause. He is believed to have at one time warned his “Sweetheart-Spouse” to behave, because, even for Mrs. Schirach the Concentration Camp would not be absolutely ruled out.
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