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Hitler the Scientist (Hardback)

How Pseudo-Science and Anti-Semitism Shaped Hitler's Destiny


By Andrew Pike
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 224
Illustrations: 12 mono illustrations
ISBN: 9781399079747
Published: 31st July 2024


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When Hitler came to power in 1933 he promised the German people a technocratic state where science, technology and education would grow and flourish. Unfortunately, any attempts to achieve such a goal were dependent on his educational background which was fundamentally flawed and severely distorted.

Hitler’s schooling was a troubled time where he struggled with many subjects. In particular he found conflicting views between science and religion so difficult to understand it caused him to “run his head against the wall”. He was also heavily educated in subjects like myths, magic, pseudo-sciences and the occult which would become his versions of alternative science and alternative facts. These alternatives remained with him into adulthood where, as Fuhrer, his mentality and mindset towards science was highlighted when he announced: "A new age of magic interpretation of the world is coming, of interpretation in terms of the will and not the intelligence."

Hitler’s ideology and rise to power also came at an interesting time for physics which was hinting at that will not intelligence interpretation. The early decades of the twentieth century had seen a revolution in two apparently connected key areas of the subject known as quantum mechanics and relativity; these would have a dramatic influence on Hitler and the physics of the Third Reich. During the 1920s quantum mechanics was suggesting that just by observing an experiment a scientist could alter the outcome and reality. However, at the same time Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity was also developing and whereas the two areas were believed to be linked, to the Nazis there was a serious problem. Whereas German physicist Max Planck’s quantum physics was a non-Jewish science hinting at that promised magical underlying foundation to physics and reality, Einstein was Jewish and so was his theory. Moreover, relativity was difficult to understand and accept, especially amongst certain right-wing experimental physicists. Therefore, relativity was easy to reject with the magical quantum world eagerly accepted by the Nazis.

However, with Hitler’s ability to understand science clearly strained and steadfast from childhood together with his seething anti-Semitism, this decision set the Nazis on a research road very different from the Allies. As the decade progressed so did the ridicules towards Jewish science through Einstein and his theory. This set in motion extreme anti-Semitic attacks on him by those extreme right-wing experimental physicists many of whom would later find key roles in Hitler’s government. As such, the theoretical physics dominated by Jewish scientists was rejected en mass with key Jewish scientists dismissed from their academic posts. Instead, the Third Reich favoured experimental, or applied, physics which shaped much of Hitler’s war machine with the so-called magical interpretation of quantum mechanics and its apparent will over intelligence providing the basis for unconventional pseudo-scientific research, research like free energy, anti-gravity and hidden occultist physics through ancient texts.

Through Hitler’s key reforms in science and education and Heinrich Himmler’s SS, science became politicised with an added danger that certain areas were replaced with Nazi alternatives like pseudo-science, magic and the occult. The result was certain areas of true sciences became pseudo-sciences while the Third Reich’s pseudo-sciences became the true sciences. Disciplines then became Aryan physics, Aryan chemistry, Aryan biology, Aryan mathematics, and so on, with all expected to prove their place within National Socialism or perish. From there science experienced an era of division and decline with loss of freedom and diversity, misapplication of innovation and the inevitable decline in some areas of the natural sciences, especially physics and mathematics.

By the war’s end Himmler’s SS had taken control of much of Nazi Germany’s scientific research and with the unthinkable dawning on the Nazis that they might lose the war, Hitler placed SS General Hans Kammler in charge of producing new and unconventional wonder weapons, even super weapons, through his own think tank along the lines as Himmler’s Ahnenerbe. Hitler’s faith in Kammler meant he was promoted to only one rank below Himmler working with him in an intense effort to turn the war around, especially following the D-Day landings. To the very end Hitler continued to declare these super weapons would save Nazi Germany, but this led to intolerable strain on his generals when Hitler ordered troops to make last ditch attempts to protect certain locations, locations his generals did not fully understand and made no tactical sense as the Allies advanced on Berlin. Once again, Hitler had failed to understand the true situation while Kammler and Himmler had their own plans in place.

It is clear the foundations of Hitler’s education and its support by like-minded Nazis set in place a destiny that helped the downfall of the Third Reich. Consequently, over time the promised veneer of scientific and educational modernisation under his technocratic state suffered seriously and although this did not initially cause his government to collapse, it neither allowed it to thrive anywhere close to the many promises he made to the German people.

All this was a far cry from Germany’s scientific research of the nineteenth century which saw staggering achievements up to Hitler’s rise to power. These golden years built an unrivalled global reputation from the foundations of chemistry expanding into other scientific disciplines like physics and astronomy. In doing so Germany’s economy flourished and by the early twentieth century over half of the Nobel Prizes were won by German scientists or German speaking scientists many of whom were Jews. Although Hitler spoke of the golden years and promised to build upon them, it was yet another broken promise based on his lack of scientific understanding and how science needed to do its job. With fleeing Jewish scientists and failures under a dictator focused on pseudo-science and seething anti-Semitism, the Allies took full advantage of the destiny Hitler had created for himself.

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About Andrew Pike

Andrew Pike graduated from the University of London with a degree in astrophysics. He went on to postgraduate study and research in plasma astrophysics and mathematical sciences including engineering mathematics.

His research interests have included the history of science, atmospheric physics and space weather including Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAPs) usually associated with the UFO subject. As a result, his interest in military physics began when he was the first civilian physicist to investigate strange aerial lights and a delta-shaped stealth-like aircraft that buzzed the twin airbases of RAF Bentwaters and RAF Woodbridge during Christmas week 1980, bases that were leased to the USAF at the height of the Cold War.

He has written five books connected with astronomy and the unexplained as well as contributing to many newsstand magazines. He was also the space and astronomy consultant for UFO Magazine (UK) and The Unopened Files, the latter of which later became the military intelligent magazine Eye Spy.

In January 1994 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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