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Publisher's Summary

The Nazis presented themselves as warriors against moral degeneracy. Yet, as Norman Ohler's gripping best seller reveals, the entire Third Reich was permeated with drugs: cocaine, heroin, morphine and, most of all, methamphetamines, or crystal meth, used by everyone from factory workers to housewives, and crucial to troops; resilience - even partly explaining German victory in 1940.
The promiscuous use of drugs at the very highest levels also impaired and confused decision-making, with Hitler and his entourage taking refuge in potentially lethal cocktails of stimulants administered by the physician Dr Morell as the war turned against Germany. While drugs cannot on their own explain the events of the Second World War or its outcome, Ohler shows, they change our understanding of it. Blitzed forms a crucial missing piece of the story.
©2016 Norman Ohler (P)2016 Penguin Books Limited
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Critic Reviews

"Bursting with interesting facts." ( Vice)
"Extremely interesting...a serious piece of scholarship, very well researched." (Ian Kershaw)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Tim on 03-13-17

One Reich, One God, One Dealer

This is a fascinating rollercoaster ride through the history of third Reich seen through the prism of substance abuse. The premise that the German people, especially their fighting forces, ran on massive amounts of Crystal Meth and Hitler was addicted to Hill Billy Heroin was shocking, but makes perfect sense. How else could Hitler’s armies roll up Europe like a cheap rug in just a matter of days? The work seems well researched and is extremely well performed by Johnathan Keeble. The events it documents are both fascinating and horrifying by turn. I’m a fairly keen WWII reader but this told several tales which I hadn't heard before. I’d heard that Hitler had a serious problem with substances which I always found odd because he was famously keen on health and fitness. The book explains this transition from extreme vegan to severe doper in great detail.

If I have any qualms about the narrative it feels like the author may be over playing his hand, just a touch. He goes in for quite a bit of speculative thinking extending his already startling and well documented theory beyond firm facts. Attributing Hitler’s decline in sanity and health primarily to substance abuse is fascinating but it may be joining up dots which are not really be there. Regardless, this is a marvelous, compelling read. If you have any interest whatsoever in WWII its causes and impact on our world, you will find this an extremely satisfying read.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By James on 02-09-17

A excellent narrative.

Holy Guacamole! This audiobook is a blast. Even if you have read more Third Reich books than is good for normal functioning, get this one.

I've rarely have had as much fun learning than I have has listening to this audiobook. The subject is new, it's fascinating, and it keeps you listening. I listened to it almost at one go. While it covers the subjects of drugs in the Third Reich, it's something of a drug itself--very hard to quit.

As a pharmacological history of the Third Reich and a pharmacological biography of Hitler this book can not be beat. It sheds an entirely new light on Hitler and his enabler/pusher Dr. Morel. It also sheds light on how the Wehrmacht can be understood as a Walter White experience gone horribly off the rails.

Thanks to this new understanding we have a understanding on how Hitler was able to power thought the war sustained on junk (both literal and figurative) The number and amount of items Hitler had pushed into his veins by the good Doctor Morel is amply and chillingly documented. The rise and fall of both Hitler and his Reich is plotted with excruciating detail on medical charts and on prescription notes. What a strange, long and ultimately disastrous trip it was.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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4 out of 5 stars
By Sam on 02-12-17

very interesting

fascinating aspect of history not much reported on. becomes a little bit repetitive over the course of the book but overall very good

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By MrLucyfer on 12-19-16

Illuminating

It does not justify the horrible disgusting things Hitler and the Nazis did but it explains many things. Worth a read.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By neil bailey on 04-11-18

brilliant book!

This is a facinating book, brilliantly written and narrated, highly recommend it! truth truly is stranger than fiction.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Anonymous User on 04-03-18

great - very interesting but has slight flaws..

very interesting book and highly recommended. my only issues with the book are the authors opinions, explanations/descriptions and representations of certain drugs in the book and their effects. I'm a recovering heroin / speedball addict with, unfortunately, a lot of experience in the chemicals covered in the book.for example the authors description of oxycodone's (eucadol (sp?)) effects seem very naive and are, frankly, incorrect. it, compared to high quality heroin, is actually not particularly strong when injected and in no way could be considered stronger, more addictive, "harder" or as some kind of wonder drug, in my opinion. it is just another opiate, it does have specific effects that are useful for treatment of pain (it doesn't cause the same drowsiness that some others opiates do) but it is certainly not some kind of one-drug magical speedball and has none of the same uniquely powerful effects that a "true" (whatever that really means) speedball has - i.e. a mixture of heroin and either cocaine or methamphetamine has upon injection. I've personally injected oxycodone and meth many times and it is very different than injecting oxycodone on its own. oxy is just a relatively strong opiate eith fewer side effects (including causing less drowsiness, nausea and itchiness) than morphine, and could be considered approximately equal in strength with morphine (which, medically speaking at least, is considered the "gold standard" of opiate painkillers that other opiate painkillers are measured against). also the authors description of and elaboration on the other drugs in the book seems naive and the opinion of someone who has not had any experience with "hard" drugs, other than what he's gleaned from reading about them (and imo most non-fiction concerning "drug facts" seems like it's about 20+ years behind current research and experience, and in no way represents my own experiences). finally the author appears to have little experience with drug addiction, im not saying he's got the wrong end of the stick necessarily - im just saying I don't agree with some of what he says, however he does have some interesting ideas. he should read some of gabor mate's books on addiction (highly recommended, at least from this addict's point of view!!) other than the above griping I thought this was a very fascinating and well thought out and presented book, and I think it breaks new ground on the downfall of the Nazis and Hitler in particular. sorry for all the () and -'s guys - also hopefully this doesn't come across as promoting drug use, which I am certainly not trying to do :)

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