Albert Speer by Gitta Sereny
Albert Speer was the epitome of the intelligent technocrat who loyally serves a totalitarian regime. As Hitler’s relentlessly efficient Minister for Armaments and War Production from 1942 through 1945, he greatly helped the German military machine prolong World War II. Despite his relative youth—Speer was then in his late thirties—his accomplishments in the service of the Third Reich made him, for a time, its second most important official and the Fuehrer’s potential successor.
During the final stages of the war, Speer became increasingly disillusioned with Hitler’s policy of “victory or annihilation,” and he tried to protect German industry from orders to destroy it in all areas threatened by the advancing Allied armies. But Speer remained faithful enough to the dictator not to join the anti-Hitler plot of July 1944; indeed, he appears to have been involved in its suppression.
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