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The Halls of Hell

hellstorm1,629 words

Editor’s Note:

The following is an excerpt from chapter 10 of Hellstorm: The Death of Nazi Germany, 1944-1947 (Sheridan, Colorado: Aberdeen Books, 2010), which deals primarily with the fate of innocent Germans, primarily women, children, the old, and infirm in the last year and aftermath of World War II. 

[W]e were wakened by the sound of tires screeching, engines stopping abruptly, orders yelled, general din, and a hammering on the window shutters. Then the intruders broke through the door, and we saw Americans with rifles who stood in front of our bed and shone lights at us. None of them spoke German, but their gestures said: “Get dressed, come with us immediately.” This was my fourth arrest.

Thus wrote Leni Riefenstahl, a talented young woman who was perhaps the world’s greatest film-maker. Because her epic documentaries—Triumph of the Will and Olympia—seemed paeans to not only Germany, but Nazism, and because of her close relationship with an admiring Adolf Hitler, Leni was of more than passing interest to the Allies. Though false, rumors also hinted that the attractive, sometimes-actress was also a “mistress of the devil”—that she and Hitler were lovers.

“Neither my husband nor my mother nor any of my three assistants had ever joined the Nazi Party, nor had any of us been politically active,” said the confused young woman. “No charges had ever been filed against us, yet we were at the mercy of the [Allies] and had no legal protection of any kind.”

Soon after Leni’s fourth arrest, came a fifth.

The jeep raced along the autobahns until, a few hours later . . . I was brought to the Salzburg Prison; there an elderly prison matron rudely pushed me into the cell, kicking me so hard that I fell to the ground; then the door was locked. There were two other women in the dark, barren room, and one of them, on her knees, slid about the floor, jabbering confusedly; then she began to scream, her limbs writhing hysterically. She seemed to have lost her mind. The other woman crouched on her bunk, weeping to herself.

As Leni and others quickly discovered, the “softening up” process began soon after arrival at an Allied prison. When Ernst von Salomon, his Jewish girlfriend, and fellow prisoners reached an American holding pen near Munich, the men were promptly led into a room and brutally beaten by military police. With his teeth knocked out and blood spurting from his mouth, von Salomon moaned to a gum-chewing officer, “You are no gentlemen.” The remark brought only a roar of laughter from the attackers. “No, no, no!” the GIs grinned. “We are Mississippi boys!” In another room, military policemen raped the women at will while leering soldiers watched from windows.

After such savage treatment, the feelings of despair only intensified once the captives were crammed into cells.

The people had been standing there for three days, waiting to be interrogated,” remembered a German physician ordered to treat prisoners in the Soviet Zone. “At the sight of us a pandemonium broke out which left me helpless. . . . As far as I could gather, the usual senseless questions were being reiterated: Why were they there, and for how long? They had no water and hardly anything to eat. They wanted to be let out more often than once a day. . . . A great many of them have dysentery so badly that they can no longer get up.

“Young Poles made fun of us,” said a woman from her cell in the same zone. “[They] threw bricks through the windows, paper bags with sand, and skins of hares filled with excrement. We did not dare to move or offer resistance, but huddled together in the farthest corner, in order not to be hit, which could not always be avoided. . . . [W]e were never free from torments.”

“For hours on end I rolled about on my bed, trying to forget my surroundings,” recalled Leni Riefenstahl, “but it was impossible.”

The mentally disturbed woman kept screaming—all through the night; but even worse were the yells and shrieks of men from the courtyard, men who were being beaten, screaming like animals. I subsequently found out that a company of SS men was being interrogated.

 They came for me the next morning, and I was taken to a padded cell where I had to strip naked, and a woman examined every square inch of my body. Then I had to get dressed and go down to the courtyard, where many men were standing, apparently prisoners, and I was the only woman. We had to line up before an American guard who spoke German. The prisoners stood to attention, so I tried to do the same, and then an American came who spoke fluent German. He pushed a few people together, then halted at the first in our line. “Were you in the Party?”

The prisoner hesitated for a moment, then said: “Yes.”

He was slugged in the face and spat blood.

The American went on to the next in line.

“Were you in the Party?”

The man hesitated.

“Yes or no?”

“Yes.” And he too got punched so hard in the face that the blood ran out of his mouth. However, like the first man, he didn’t dare resist. They didn’t even instinctively raise their hands to protect themselves. They did nothing. They put up with the blows like dogs.

The next man was asked: “Were you in the Party?”



“No,” he yelled, so no punch. From then on nobody admitted that he had been in the Party and I was not even asked.

As the above case illustrated, there often was no rhyme or reason to the examinations; all seemed designed to force from the victim what the inquisitor wanted to hear, whether true or false. Additionally, many such “interrogations” were structured to inflict as much pain and suffering as possible. Explained one prisoner:

The purpose of these interrogations is not to worm out of the people what they knew—which would be uninteresting anyway—but to extort from them special statements. The methods resorted to are extremely primitive; people are beaten up until they confess to having been members of the Nazi Party. . . . The authorities simply assume that, basically, everybody has belonged to the Party. Many people die during and after these interrogations, while others, who admit at once their party membership, are treated more leniently.

“A young commissar, who was a great hater of the Germans, cross-examined me… ,” said Gertrude Schulz. “When he put the question: “Frauenwerk [Women’s Labor Service]?”, I answered in the negative. Thereupon he became so enraged, that he beat me with a stick, until I was black and blue. I received about 15 blows . . . on my left upper arm, on my back and on my thigh. I collapsed and, as in the case of the first cross-examination, I had to sign the questionnaire.”

“Both officers who took our testimony were former German Jews,” reminisced a member of the women’s SS, Anna Fest. While vicious dogs snarled nearby, one of the officers screamed questions and accusations at Anna. If the answers were not those desired, “he kicked me in the back and the other hit me.”

They kept saying we must have been armed, have had pistols or so. But we had no weapons, none of us. . . . I had no pistol. I couldn’t say, just so they’d leave me in peace, yes, we had pistols. The same thing would happen to the next person to testify. . . . [T]he terrible thing was, the German men had to watch. That was a horrible, horrible experience. . . . That must have been terrible for them. When I went outside, several of them stood there with tears running down their cheeks. What could they have done? They could do nothing.

Not surprisingly, with beatings, rape, torture, and death facing them, few victims failed to “confess” and most gladly inked their name to any scrap of paper shown them. Some, like Anna, tried to resist. Such recalcitrance was almost always of short duration, however. Generally, after enduring blackened eyes, broken bones, electric shock to breasts—or, in the case of men, smashed testicles—only those who died during torture failed to sign confessions.

Alone, surrounded by sadistic hate, utterly bereft of law, many victims understandably escaped by taking their own lives. Like tiny islands in a vast sea of misery, however, miracles did occur. As he limped painfully back to his prison cell, one Wehrmacht officer reflected on the insults, beatings, and tortures he had endured and contemplated suicide.

I could not see properly in the semi-darkness and missed my open cell door. A kick in the back and I was sprawling on the floor. As I raised myself I said to myself I could not, should not accept this humiliation. I sat on my bunk. I had hidden a razor blade that would serve to open my veins. Then I looked at the New Testament and found these words in the Gospel of St. John: “Without me ye can do nothing.”

 Yes. You can mangle this poor body—I looked down at the running sores on my legs—but myself, my honor, God’s image that is in me, you cannot touch. This body is only a shell, not my real self. Without Him, without the Lord, my Lord, ye can do nothing. New strength seemed to rise in me.

I was pondering over what seemed to me a miracle when the heavy lock turned in the cell door. A very young American soldier came in, put his finger to his lips to warn me not to speak. “I saw it,” he said. “Here are baked potatoes.” He pulled the potatoes out of his pocket and gave them to me, and then went out, locking the door behind him.


  1. Grigorii from Moscow
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 3:31 am | Permalink

    People on this website would never how important to the United States of America (and to the Soviet Union) the victory in World War II was. True, Germans were butchered and massacred. But that was the logical conclusion to the war, and also to a process of breakdown of traditionalistic European states, that began in 1914. World War I destroyed the Romanovs, Hohenzollerns, Habsburgs and the Ottomans. Destroying four empires. Breaking economies and destroying old ways of organizing society. World War II destroyed Hitler and Mussolini, and their economies, armies and ideologies. Both World Wars could be viewed as a kind of a revolution. USA achieved something important- the world reserve currency status of the US Dollar. America became a SUPERPOWER. And more powerful than the Soviet Union. Transnational organizations were born- World Bank, International Monetary Fund, North Atlantic Treaty Orgnization, World Trade Organization and European Community. All these transnational institutions were born after WWII or as a direct consequence. The entire world was born anew in 1945 it seems. European colonial empires would collapse, and many peoples of Asia, Africa and Arabia would break free from chains of European colonialism right after 1945. There were all kinds of reasons for which Nazi Germany had to be destroyed, not just the Jewish issue. There were economic, ideological, geopolitical reasons for it’s destruction. Hitler represented a very reactionary right-wing regime that was like a thorn for those who wished to remake the world. No Liberal or Progressive in Washington or a Communist in Moscow could tolerate a regime that would interfere with their vision of the world, just by the fact of it’s own existence. The fall of Nazi Germany created a new world of transnational governance, transnational corporations and a global empire of the USA, or at least was a very critical step toward that result. Some might cry over those Germans that died, but that was just collateral damage for the politicians. Power demands sacrifice. After the fall of Nazi Germany, the era of Great European powers has come to an end. Then the Cold War Era began. It is not that Churchill or Roosevelt loved Communism, they hated it personally, but they hated Nazi Germany more. Today we live in a totally different world, with different beliefs and thoughts. Different culture, different values. Nazism, Fascism is but a distant memory in history books in this brave new world. Even British historian Keith Lowe noted that World War II brought death not only to cities and people, but to beliefs, social orders and ways of life. 1945 was Hour Zero to many European cities, everything old was literally and figuratively destroyed, and had to be rebuilt in a new and modern fashion.

    • WWWM
      Posted February 4, 2014 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

      Except the true order of a people can never be overturned, only distorted. I would refer people to reading Yockey’s “Imperium”, if you have the time to invest. It is true that the Europe of old is long gone, but the soul of Europe continues as long as the people of European descent exist. Modern life has changed nations, languages and cultures. But those most noble characteristics that forged the old empires are still out there in the world.

    • Walter
      Posted February 5, 2014 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

      While you are right with everything you say you are not saying whether you welcome this outcome of the war.
      Such a value judgment is the basis for a life of either acquiescence to the way they have become as a result of Allied victory and Axis defeat, or for the forging of the will to re-enliven that vision of the independent nation, the self-actualization of one’s peoples’ way of being. The Second War was not just won or lost, what won or lost was a concept of life, of the world, esthetics, art, even science. These pure ideations give us meaning , convey a deep happiness, steer us through life, or deprive us of a meaningful life.
      I personally deplore the victory of the Merchant Ideology in this war.

    • Walter
      Posted February 5, 2014 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

      Grigorii, I just wrote a reply to you but am not sure that it was sent.
      So my main point of the (perhaps lost reply) was:
      Do you welcome the Allied victory of the Axis World-View or do you just simply take note of it and live on?

      • Grigorii from Moscow
        Posted February 6, 2014 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

        The two world wars were unique in many senses. The First World War was a war of empires, the imperialist war, Communists and other leftists liked to call it, and to some extent they were right. The Second World War was a war of ideologies, which added on extra brutality. I am just a young man from Moscow, Russia. I have no power to judge history, history already happened. Mr. Goodrich probably hates people like me, but whatever. There is no ability to change what has happened, Allied victory happened, and it is like a pill you must just accept and gulp it down your throat. You live in a totally different world from the one that existed in 1939 or in 1945. So, it is just important for you just to live on and enjoy life as much as possible. The survival of your own people depends on that, depression over sins committed 65 years ago do not help.

  2. chad
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 3:57 am | Permalink

    Reading something like this is very disturbing. It pains me to realize that the USA, a country I was once proud of, is basically an engine of evil; a hammer smashing Western Civilization to pieces.

    When I was younger I was brainwashed like so many other people in this country to reflexively regard the Nazi’s as evil. So of course I was proud of America’s role in defeating Germany.
    Then I started developing more of an isolationist stance, as outlined in George Washington’s farewell address. I would have said that America should have simply stayed out the conflict.
    Now, having woken up to the importance of race, I believe that America should have entered into the war on the side of Germany. We should have helped our racial betters defeat the Jew menace in the Soviet Union.
    Unfortunately that didn’t happen. And now we are seeing the consequences all across America, in the rotting cities and the demoralized and degenerate white people. America helped usher in a new dark age, and I’m afraid things will only get worse. I suppose one can take a sort of grim satisfaction knowing that this country will reap what it sowed.
    I only hope America, as it goes down, does so quietly, and without much fuss and bloodshed. Just slip beneath the water and go away.

    • the outdoorsman
      Posted February 4, 2014 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      I cannot recommend enough that you purchase the book! Once done with it, pass it along to everyone you can! You will not need any encouragement to do the latter after you’ve read it.

    • WWWM
      Posted February 4, 2014 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

      I took the same ideological course as you did. First believing America was the great savior of the world, then isolationist/anti-war, finally racial consciousness. After reading the works of Francis Parker Yockey and realized America was the enemy of the European people. At this moment in time America is starting to openly show its true colors (not a pun, I think the term colors is very appropriate in this case). It will only be a matter of time before Detroit becomes all of America.

  3. Peter
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Thank you for posting this. My parents were German and this provides more details to things I’ve heard. But some Germans fared better than others. I have a Professor friend whose father was in the Luftwaffe and came here after WW II as part the program to bring German scientists to the USA. He thinks the Americans were wonderful and apparently his father was treated well.

    I myself was born in the USA but resent very much what the USA did. I don’t consider Americans particularly brave; I think the two oceans were a blessing for the USA and its greatest asset. Its entry into both world wars weren’t very risky to the USA and both times the USA entered the war when Germany was already fighting most of the world. I don’t like the endless lying and smearing of the Germans. I think the Americans show more hatred towards Germans than the Soviets when the USA attacked Germany and Germany attacked the USSR. But that;s the tipoff. Most of the hatred generated in America towards Germans comes from the Jews. It started after Hitler gained power and has continued until today. Thank you for posting. It shows there are decent Americans and makes me feel a little better.

  4. Grigorii from Moscow
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    America was not the destroyer of western civilization. America got rid of Nazi Germany in order to make western civilization liberal, democratic and capitalist. America also wanted world hegemony and superpower status and to make the dollar the currency of the world. Which politician would not kill some Germans for such money and power. And one must remember that America fought Communism in the Cold War later. America even allied with Al-Qaeda in order to fight Communism. And one could praise American govt for such global hegemony. Germany is now full of American bases, Germany buys US Bonds, Germany finances the US Debt. Germany is now a US, NATO and EU protectorate. American polticians succeeded in building truly global elite networks.

    • Gunnar Tyrsson
      Posted February 9, 2014 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      By remaking Europe into the globalist, liberal, and capitalist model, America did effectively destroy Europe. Take a look at Western Europe after almost 70 years of the “Pax Americana.” The irony is that the Communist states of Eastern Europe were in better shape racially and culturally when they fell than the West.

      A quote from Tomislav Sunic: “Communism destroyed the body; capitalism destroys the soul.”

  5. Peter
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    The destruction of Europe and western civilization is Winston Churchill’s responsibility. Both France and England declared war on Germany when Germany finally took action to liberate millions of Germans from foreign occupation in the new countries created at the end of WW I (Czechoslovakia and Poland). Hitler never wanted war with England or France and after it started he repeatedly made peace offers to England, which Churchill hushed up. So finally Rudolf Hess (one of the top National Socialists) flew solo to England in a daring flight in the middle of the war. He parachuted out of his plane, injured himself landing and was promptly arrested and declared insane.

    Winston Churchill was in the pay of the Jews, was nearly bankrupt when they bailed him out. The Focus Group was largely Jewish and they got him back in power under the c0ndition he attack Germany. By 1940 England was already bankrupt and fearing the German army landing on English soil. Churchill repeatedly asked for the USA’s help and FDR finally did help, not out of love for England (he declared in cabinet meetings he wanted the destruction of the British Empire, while Hitler proclaimed to his people his admiration of England, its empire and its people and said he desired no war with them).

    In the USA Jews had a big influence also, having patriotic Americans like Lindbergh, Father Coughglin and Henry Ford labeled anti-American and anti-semitic. Jews wanted the USA to attack Germany and FDR saw an opportunity to take advantage of Churchill’s and Europe’s predicament. The British Empire was bankrupted and destroyed, the French Empire was bankrupted and German was totally destroyed with about 8 to 10 million dead Germans and about 50 million dead Europeans (including Russians).

    David Irving has revealed all this and has written numerous bestsellers and has uncovered the most important documents of the war that expose all the lies. For this Jews from every western country have worked together to destroy this great man financially and in reputation.

    We live in a Jewish run world thanks to Winston Churchill and FDR’s taking advantage of the situation (with Jewish coaxing).

  6. Peter
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Here is the portion of the lend-lease agreement reached in September 1940. In a typical distortion of the facts it says “the United States assumed Britain’s defense responsibilities in the Caribbean.” Britain didn’t have any defense responsibilities in the Caribbean. Germany wasn’t threatening the USA in 1940 (or the Caribbean), but FDR and the USA were ratcheting up the hatred of Germany.

    During the Battle of Britain the USA offered Britain some broken down ships and got valuable British naval bases and islands in return.

  7. Junghans
    Posted February 6, 2014 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    Yes indeed, Hitler was “going to conquer the world” all right, or so the mendacious, mothworn Anglo/Judeo meme goes. The question to the clueless who buy into that nonsense is, with what? A nation of 80 million people that was smaller than the state of Texas, and only had a tiny navy? The fact is, WWII was the premeditated gang rape of Germany by aberrant Jewish proxies. The entire White world is now suffering the consequences of that disaster.
    Tom Goodrich has written an excellent book, as has Benton Bradberry, which is called- The Myth of German Villainy. Since the revisionist tomes of the 1950’s, the truth about what really happened is finally starting to reemerge.

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