But perhaps the most fascinating aspect of the Third Reich’s deeply manipulative and seductive propaganda—and especially the sense of invincibility and inevitable triumph that it sparked in the hearts of true believers—is how ludicrous and, in the end, how perfectly mistaken it all was. Yes, Hitler, Goebbels, Himmler, Goering and the other genocidal gangsters did unleash a murderous nightmare in Europe, and for a few years—a very few years—it might have seemed as if the Nazi drive for domination was, in fact, unstoppable.
But then something happened that the Reich did not intend. Free people stood up. Britain resisted, mightily. America (finally) entered the war in December 1941 and along with the Soviet Union, the British, the Free French and so many other Allies, set about systematically demolishing the “invincible” German forces. Hitler’s Thousand-Year Reich lasted a little more than a decade, and when it was destroyed, its architect killed himself in a squalid underground bunker.