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Blitzed Audiobook

Blitzed: Drugs in the Third Reich

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Publisher's Summary

The Nazi regime preached an ideology of physical, mental, and moral purity. But as Norman Ohler reveals in this gripping new history, the Third Reich was saturated with drugs. On the eve of World War II, Germany was a pharmaceutical powerhouse, and companies such as Merck and Bayer cooked up cocaine, opiates, and, most of all, methamphetamines, to be consumed by everyone from factory workers to housewives to millions of German soldiers. In fact, troops regularly took rations of a form of crystal meth - the elevated energy and feelings of invincibility associated with the high even help to explain certain German military victories.

Drugs seeped all the way up to the Nazi high command and, especially, to Hitler himself. Over the course of the war, Hitler became increasingly dependent on injections of a cocktail of drugs - including a form of heroin - administered by his personal doctor. While drugs alone cannot explain the Nazis' toxic racial theories or the events of World War II, Ohler's investigation makes an overwhelming case that, if drugs are not taken into account, our understanding of the Third Reich is fundamentally incomplete. Carefully researched and rivetingly listenable, Blitzed throws surprising light on a history that, until now, has remained in the shadows.

©2017 Norman Ohler (P)2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

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4.7 (216 )
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  •  
    James Carl Barsz, MD Casa Grande, AZ, USA 05-06-17
    James Carl Barsz, MD Casa Grande, AZ, USA 05-06-17 Member Since 2011

    cfbmd

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    "The best "Gotterdammerung" book I have ever read."

    I am a 70 year-old physician, specializing in addiction medicine, and still practicing. SUPERB BOOK.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doc Holliday 03-24-17

    Retired, living in Montana, enjoying the good life. Favorites: CJ Box; Carl Hiassen and historical non-fiction—Modern European History

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    "Methamphetamine: winning wars for 70 yrs."
    If you could sum up Blitzed in three words, what would they be?

    Interesting. Dry. Surprising


    Would you be willing to try another book from the authors? Why or why not?

    Probably not, since what is being read is, in fact, a translation from German. When the story ventures into accounts of the consistency/frequency/etc of Hitler's bowel movements, no matter how interested in history I am, I am probably not going to go looking for more of the same.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Performance was average. A bit monotone and slow. This may be due to the fact that reciting the number of millions of methamphetamine/narcotic analgesics/vitamins/gas pills/etc pills taken by Germans-military, upper echelon military, government and average German citizens-is only interesting for a short period of time.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Your grandfather's methamphetamine lost WWII for the Germans.


    Any additional comments?

    The sheer mass of pills and other concoctions used by the German people is staggering. The book gives one the impression every German in the military was, from the invasion of Poland until the fall of France and beyond to Operation Barbarrossa, 'blitzed' on methamphetamine or something Hitler's personal physician dreamed up to make money. Most of civilian administration and civilians seem to have indulged themselves in everything from quack vitamin remedies to methamphetamine to various, very potent narcotic analgesics.

    The ending of the book, chronicling Hitler's final 'pharmacological fall' was interesting. A lot of people seem to believe the Germans were these invincible 'supermen' and that a neo-nazi state would be so efficient, it would take over all other forms of government. The Nazis were clowns. They did nothing efficiently. Keeping records doesn't preserve a corrupt government. There is no reason to believe neo-nazis would be any smarter than the Hitler clan. I think it is the uniforms and, of course, the movies that give them this aura of invincibility.

    It is interesting that the extent of the Germans' drug use is not more commonly known. This seems like something the allies would have jumped on to demonize Hitler when he was alive and to demonize the remaining Nazis after the war. Like the Germans very effective use of IBM's "Hoeleriths" to facilitate the final solution, it remains popularly unknown.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Neal H. 08-29-17
    Neal H. 08-29-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Unreal"

    Incredible look into the reality of Hitler's regime and the driving force behind the aggressive push behind the Blitzkrieg. What might have been if it weren't for effects of drugs on Hitler... he effectively defeated himself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rosemary Greenwich, CT, United States 08-08-17
    Rosemary Greenwich, CT, United States 08-08-17 Member Since 2017

    I love the last 150 years of history. Bully Pulpit and the Wilson biography absolute best!

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    "Very interesting new history of the Nazis"

    This book explains the incredible swift success of the early invasions by a hyped up drugged to the gills Nazi army.
    It also reveals convincingly Hitler and his high command's gradual addiction to cocaine and crystal meth, available over the counter in wartime Germany. A bit overlong and over detailed. Extremely well read aloud.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Stephanie Carter 07-26-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Accurate and a well written historical account of the role pharma industry played in recent German history"

    A very entertaining well written and concise listen. I feel that this book should have been written years ago and would be just as relevant and critically acclaimed, but the cultural acceptance of Breaking Bad and breaking the methamphetamine-taboo may have made its recent publication a more commercially attractive decision. It was a wonderful blend of history, chemistry and a lesson to future warlords who desire battlefield success: leave the amphetamine to hyperactive children, depressed housewives from the 1950s, & Mexican superlabs. for all my fellow scientists and chemists out there: Who else suspects that pervitin was racemic dextro- and levo-methamphetamine. What most clinicians don't know is that dextro-methamphetamine is safer and has less norepinephrine related cardiac stress/systemic sympathetic activation compared to racemic amphetamine, but because of its less than kosher reputation, society is okay prescribing ADHD patients the many times more toxic racemic amphetamine salts otherwise known as Adderall. Mostly because the original meth patents had long expired and only proprietary amphetamine mixtures were available to be patented. Bottom line: not only did the nazis make things like jackboots, swastikas, prussia

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Sky 07-23-17
    Sky 07-23-17 Member Since 2017
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    "You'll never look at the nazis or the war the same"

    Coming up in a society that condemns drug use (or pretends to) and crafts drug laws to persecute certain groups and cultures, it was enlightening to read historical accounts of blatant drug abuse at the highest level of government.
    The juxtapositions between the propaganda used by the nazis to associate drug use with the Jews and modern American attempts to weed out black influence in the American ecosystem by condemning them as drug fueled savages is astounding.
    Everyone should read this book to get a clearer view on the relationship between governments and people. As a citizen in a free country, one is entitled to understand the manipulation tactics corrupt governments will instill to ensure that their narrative is the only narrative and how the use of drugs isn't criminalized for our safety but to protect the narrative by making it difficult to acquire substances that allow one to think differently.
    Also who knew Hitler was such a frigging mess?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Cameron 07-21-17
    Cameron 07-21-17 Member Since 2015
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    "I'm no history buff"

    I'm a very, very casual historian, but this was very good. I work in the medical field, so I think that played a roll in my enjoyment of the book. In any case, I loved it and am going to recommend it to my family and friends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    rad Long Beach, CA 06-16-17
    rad Long Beach, CA 06-16-17

    radaxis7

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    "Nazi Vice"

    I am pretty sure this is the most intimate depiction of the SS well ever see. The comprehensive research, shrewd insights and details discerned from the good (Dr. Morrell aka Feelgood ) are certainly compelling and consistent with what we know about personality disorders, addiction and Nazis today. A fascinating perspective well delivered by the irreverent narrator, Blitzed is striking and latent achievement that wields considerable evidence and veracity about what was really going on with the furor.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Vance Jacobs 04-06-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Blitzed: a fascinating read"

    I learned a great deal about Hitler and the Germany military. I have read and watched quite a bit on the subject and this was all new to me. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the subject because it adds a level of information that helps to explain a great deal. Also, I heard about the book because the author was interviewed on NPR. It is well with a listen if u can find this interview

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lola Clapton Pepperland 03-19-17
    Lola Clapton Pepperland 03-19-17 Member Since 2014

    Lil' Lola Blue

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    "Mind altering literature."

    William Burroughs recommended the consumption of weird information, even if it was disinformation. The purpose? To expand consciousness, to challenge the bounds of ones own reality.

    If even half of what is said in this revisionist history is true, then the bounds of the reality of WWII have been expanded, indeed. But, even if this mad story of Nazis, meth, oxy and an Eight Miles High Hitler is just that, a mad story?

    Its still one of the best WWII stories Ive ever read. Hits the brain like a drug. After reading Blitzed, with its disturbing revealtions about the Nazi roots of MKULTRA and the War On Drugs, you'll never think about the Nazis, or WWII the same, again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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