Gotterdammerung

[...]The end of the Second World War in Europe, at least as normally recounted, does not make sense, for in its standard form as learned in history books that history resembles nothing so much as a badly written finale to some melodramatic Wagnerian opera. [...]To appreciate how badly written a finale it truly is, it is best to begin at the logical place: in Berlin, far below ground, in the last weeks of the war. [...]Generaloberst Heinrici, commander of the vastly outnumbered Army Group Vistula that faces the massed armies of Marshal Zhukov poised less than sixty miles from Berlin, is pleading with his leader for more troops. The general is questioning the disposition of the forces he sees displayed on the battle map, for it is clear to him that some of Germany's finest and few remaining battle worthy formations are far south, facing Marshal Koniev's forces in Silesia. These forces were thus, incomprehensibly, poised to make a stiff defense of Breslau and Prague, not Berlin. The general pleads for Hitler to release some of these forces and transfer them north, but to no avail. "Prague," the Fuhrer responds stubbornly, almost mystically, "is the key to winning the war." Generaloberts Heinrici's hard-pressed troops must "do without."

One may also perhaps imagine Heinrici and the other assembled generals perhaps casting a doleful glance at Norway on the situation map, where thousands of German troops are still stationed, occupying a country that had long since ceased to be of any strategic or operational value to the defense of the Reich. Why indeed did Hitler maintain so many German troops in Norway up to the very end of the war? These paradoxical German troops deployments are the first mystery of the badly written finale of the war in Europe. Both Allied and German generals would ponder it after the war, and both would write it off to Hitler's insanity, a conclusion that would become part of the "Allied Legend" of the end of the war. This interpretation does make sense, for if one assumed that Hitler were having a rare seizure of sanity when he ordered these deployments, what possibly could he have been thinking? Prague? Norway? There were no standard or conventional military reasons for the deployments. In other words, the deployments themselves attest his complete lack of touch with military reality.

[...]But on the Allied side of the Allied Legend, things are equally peculiar. In March and April of 1945, US General George S. Patton's Third Army is literally racing across southern Bavaria, as fast as is operationally possible, making a beeline for:
(1) the huge Skoda munitions works at Pilsen, a complex all but blown off the map by Allied bombers;
(2) Prague; and
(3) A region of the Harz Mountains in Thuringia known to Germans as the Dreiecks or Three Corners," a region encompassed by the old medieval towns and villages of Arnstadt, Jonastal, Wechmar, and Ohrdruf.

 One is informed by countless history books that this maneuver was thought to be necessary by the Supreme Headquarters of the Allied Expeditionary Force (SHEAF) because of reports that the Nazis were planning to make a last stand in the "Alpine National Redoubt", a network of fortified mountains stretching from the Alps to the Harz Mountains. The Third Army's movements, so the story goes, were designed to cut off the "escape route" of Nazis fleeing the carnage of Berlin. Maps are produced in old history books, accompanied in some cases by de-classified German plans some dating from the Weimar Republic! - for just such a redoubt. Case settled. However, there is a problem with that explanation. Allied aerial reconnaissance would likely have told Eisenhower and SHAEF that there were precious few fortified strong points in the "National Redoubt". Indeed, it would have told them that the "Redoubt" was no redoubt at all. General Patton and his divisional commanders would most certainly have been privy to at least some of this information. So why the extraordinary and almost reckless speed of his advance, an advance the post-war Allied Legend would have us believe was to cut off the escape route of Nazis fleeing Berlin, who it turns out weren't fleeing, to a redoubt that didn't exist? The mystery deepens.

 Then, remarkably, in a strange twist of fate, General Patton himself, America's most celebrated general, dies suddenly, and, some would say, suspiciously, as a result of complications from injuries he sustained in a freak automobile accident soon after the end of the war and the beginning of the Allied military occupation.

 [...]Matters are not helped by events on the other side of the world in the Pacific theater, for there American investigators would uncover similarly strange goings on after the war ended. There, after Nagasaki, the Emperor Hirohito, overriding his ministers who wanted to continue the war, decided that Japan would surrender unconditionally. But why would Hirohito's ministers urge continuance of the war in the face of overwhelming Allied conventional arms superiority, and, from their point of view, facing a potential rain of atomic bombs? After all, "two" bombs could just as easily have turned into twenty. One could, of course, attribute the ministers' objections to the Emperor's intentions to "proud samurai traditions" and the Japanese sense of "honor" and so on. And that would indeed be a plausible explanation. But another explanation is that Hirohito's cabinet ministers knew something. What his ministers probably knew was what American intelligence would soon discover: that the Japanese, "just prior to their surrender, had developed and successfully test fired an atomic bomb. The project had been housed in or near Konan(Japanese name for Hungnam), Korea, in the peninsula's North." It was exploded, so the story goes, one day after the American plutonium bomb, "Fat Man", exploded over Nagasaki, i.e., on August 10, 1945. The war, in other words, depending on Hirohito's decision, could have "gone nuclear". By that time, of course it would have done Japan no good to prolong it, with no viable means of delivery of an atomic weapon to any worthwhile strategic American targets. The Emperor stood his ministers down. These allegations constitute yet another difficulty for the Allied Legend, for where did Japan obtain the necessary uranium for its (alleged) A-bomb? And more importantly, the technology to enrich it ?

 [...]Finally, a curious fact, one of those obvious things that one lends to overlook unless attention is drawn to it: the atomic bomb test that took place at the Trinity site in new Mexico was a test of America's implosion-plutonium bomb, a test needed to see if the concept would actually work. It did, and magnificently. But what is immensely significant - a fact missing from almost all mainstream literature on the subject since the end of the war - is that the uranium bomb with its apparatus of a cannon shooting the critical mass of uranium together, the bomb that was actually first used in war, the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, was never tested. As German author Friedrich Georg notes, this tears a rather gaping hole in the Allied Legend:[...]Why was the uranium bomb of the USA, unlike the plutonium bomb, not tested prior to being hurled on Japan? Militarily this would appear to be extremely dangerous.... Did the Americans simply forget to test it, or did others already do it for them?

 [...]So, what exactly did the German pilot Hans Zinsser see on that night of October, 1944, as he flew his Heinkel bomber over the twilight skies of northern Germany? Something that, had he known it, would require the previous badly written Wagnerian libretto to be almost completely revised. His affidavit is contained in a military intelligence report of August 19, 1945, roll number A1007, filmed in 1973 at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama. Zinsser's statement is found on the last page of the report:

     47. A man named ZINSSER, a Flak rocket expert, mentioned what he noticed one day: In the beginning of Oct, 1944 I flew from Ludwigslust (south of Lubeck), about 12 to 15 km from an atomic bomb test station, when I noticed a strong, bright illumination of the whole atmosphere, lasting about 2 seconds.
     48. The clearly visible pressure wave escaped the approaching and following cloud formed by the explosion. This wave had a diameter of about 1 km when it became visible and the color of the cloud changed frequently. It became dotted after a short period of darkness with all sorts of light spots, which were, in contrast to normal explosions, of a pale blue color.
     49. After about 10 seconds the sharp outlines of the explosion cloud disappeared, then the cloud began to take on a lighter color against the sky covered with a gray overcast. The diameter of the still visible pressure wave was at least 9000 meters while remaining visible for at least 15 seconds.
     50. Personal observations of the colors of the explosion cloud found an almost blue-violet shade. During this manifestation reddishcolored rims were to be seen, changing to a dirty-like shade in very rapid succession.
     51. The combustion was lightly felt from my observation plane in the form of pulling and pushing.
     52. About one hour later I started with an He 111 from the A/D at Ludwigslust and flew in an easterly direction. Shortly after the start I passed through the almost complete overcast (between 3000 and 4000 meter altitude). A cloud shaped like a mushroom with turbulent, billowing sections (at about 7000 meter altitude) stood, without any seeming connections, over the spot where the explosion took place. Strong electrical disturbances and the impossibility to continue radio communication as by lightning, turned up.
     53. Because of the P-38s operating in the area Wittenberg-Mersburg I had to turn to the north but observed a better visibility at the bottom of the cloud where the explosion occured (sic). Note: It does not seem very clear to me why these experiments took place in such crowded areas.

 In other words, a German pilot had observed the test of a weapon, having all the signatures of a nuclear bomb: electromagnetic pulse and resulting malfunction of his radio, mushroom cloud, continuing fire and combustion of nuclear material in the cloud and so on. And all this on territory clearly under German control, in October of 1944, fully eight months before the first American A-bomb test in New Mexico.

 [...]In a nutshell: the Allied Legend about the German failure to obtain the atom bomb because they never had a functioning reactor is simply utter scientific nonsense, because a reactor is needed only it one wants to produce plutonium. It is an unneeded, and expensive, development, if one only wants to make a uranium A-bomb. Thus, there is sufficient reason, due to the science of bombmaking and the political and military realities of the war after America's entry, that the Germans took the decision to develop only a uranium bomb, since that afforded the best, most direct, and technologically least complicated route to acquisition of a bomb.

[Source: Joseph P. Farrell - Reich of the Black Sun: Nazi Secret Weapons and the Cold War Allied Legend]