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Germans off their whatsits for most of WWII. Shock horror!

I've just finished reading the excellent 'Blitzed: Drugs in Nazi Germany.' by Norman Ohler.
Blitzed, Drugs in Nazi Germany by Norman Ohler
I'd been aware that Hiltler and Goering were massive drug fiends, but hadn't realised the extent to which both the Armed Forces and CivPop were popping uppers as fast as they could get them. (Millions of tablets of Pervitin, a methamphetamine brand, ordered by the Wehrmacht before the Polish campaign alone!).
Attempts by Reich Health officials to stymie the use of drugs, methamphetamine particularly, were routinely ignored by the Wehrmact, as they relied so heavily on gear on all fronts to keep the lads awake for long periods, heighten confidence to the point of recklessness and aggression.
Hitler's drug regime is dealt with in detail and quite frankly I'm surprised he lived as long as he did on the amount of cocaine, opiates, anti-flatulance pills containing strychnine, the odd tab of meth, hormones made from dead animal offal and multi vitamins he had pumped into him by his personal Doctor Morell.
For most of the war after '42, he was off his scone more often than not, confidence by pharmaceuticals do not a great military strategist make.
All German Armed Forces indulged and the high usage of meth explains the remarkable Blitzkrieg campaign results for distances covered per day and unpredictable troop movements. As well as later 'Super Soldier' results.
They weren't Supermen just spaced out!

Well written and meticulously researched this book is highly recommended.

I'm aware that Allied Forces used the 'milder' upper Benzedrine to keep troops alert. But not on the scale of the filthy degenerate Bosche!
 
I wonder if any of the issue drugs became prized loot items?
Allied soldier comes across newly dead German and its 'Watch, lugar, meth...'
 
Nothing new to see hear: the Andrew had been doing it for years with rum.

And gin.
Watered down and Angostura bittered to buggery. The pooves!
The Hun took their pills neaters and wittered on about the degenerate West throughout the war, the hypocritical beasts.
 
Watered down and Angostura bittered to buggery. The pooves!
The Hun took their pills neaters and wittered on about the degenerate West throughout the war, the hypocritical beasts.

Well I wouldn't put Rum and Gin in the same category as Meth however... Navy Gin is not your poncey 37% stuff - it's 57% ABV.
Angosturas - I'm sure until the last few years it wasn't taxed highly due to the fact that if you tried to drink a bottle for its alcoholic content alone it'd probably do you serious harm.
In other words. The Navy Officers choice tipple of a 'Pink Gin' is basically bloody strong gin with a large dash of something harmful in it.
A gill of neaters, similarly around 57% ABV, a day needs a fairly robust constitution too.

I'll drink owt me, and generally remain slightly more social than I imagine I would be doing Meth.

ETA - Didn't 'The Red Ball Express' rely on Benzedrine etc to the extent that 'red balls' was slang alluding to the drug? Not to mention the whole jazz and Beatnik culture that grew post WW2?
 

syrup

LE
IIRC during WW1 the Germans invented Ecstasy in order to give troops courage but they became loved up and it was abandoned
You could order heroin to be sent to the front as part of your Fortnum & Masons hamper.

Elvis reportedly first tried drugs when issued Ampehtamine during his time in the US Army
 
IIRC during WW1 the Germans invented Ecstasy in order to give troops courage but they became loved up and it was abandoned
You could order heroin to be sent to the front as part of your Fortnum & Masons hamper.

Elvis reportedly first tried drugs when issued Ampehtamine during his time in the US Army

From 'Cocaine, An Unauthorised Biography' by Dominic Streatfield (Picador).
Burroughs Wellcome (Wellcome Trust) provided Ernest Shackleton with their 'Forced March' Cocaine tablets in 1909.
If I'm not mistaken, German pharmaceutical companies post WW1 were instrumental in producing a lot of what are now considered 'street drugs', ecstasy being used to counter PTSD etc.
I'm sure Japans overrunning of the Far East netted them a lot of these lucrative narcotic producing areas as well as rubber producing areas.
 

llech

LE
For most of history there has always been something mashed up brewed up smoked or ingested even Blue Wode face paint is a Hallucinogen death has always been something to avoid and Chieftains needed to put a bit of steel in men. WW2 was no different.
 

NSP

LE
Wasn't Johann Schütze issued with narcotic ciggies, too?

Or is that just a product of Sven Hassel's (presumably meth-addled) imagination...?
 
Remember RN ships Captain in Cruel Sea being given 'something' by MO to keep him going after some exhausting days and nights searching for Uboats. Shortly afterwards,U Boat blown out of water,justifying Captain's persistence,............but he couldn't get to sleep following medication.
 
Wasn't Johann Schütze issued with narcotic ciggies, too?

Or is that just a product of Sven Hassel's (presumably meth-addled) imagination...?
The British used them, but not on thier own troops.
In 1917 during the Siege of Jerusalem, the British dropped cigarettes laced with opium down to the Ottoman army. Attached to the cigarettes were flyers advertising a peaceful end to the war. The Ottomans smoked the cigarettes, and the British invaded. The Ottomans couldn’t successfully defend themselves and lost, likely due to being shitfaced on opium.
Read more at The 10 Greatest Bluffs Ever Pulled - Mandatory
The 10 Greatest Bluffs Ever Pulled - Mandatory
 
Cheers for the heads up. Got the page saved in my amazon.

Reminds me of a German bird in my hotel, on my first holiday to Ibiza. We actually thought she was Scottish. Totally off her bonce trying to climb inside a bin. Mega!
 
Pervitin was often referred to with a typical boxhead humour (ahem) by Heer troops as "Panzer chocolate" and by the Luftwaffe as "Stuka tablets".
 

theoriginalphantom

MIA
Book Reviewer
I recently saw a documentary on one of the discovery channels on this, very informative. I knew there had been wide use of drugs by the Germans, but didn't realise just how big it was.
 
I always felt sorry for poor old Charlie Kennedy, hounded out of office as Lib Dem leader just because he enjoyed a few shandies. Churchill was half cut for much of WW2, and it certainly didn't seem to impair his performance.
 
Genuine wartime issued Pervitin tablets packed in a cigar type tube and still in the original 1940's dated boxes can still be bought on militaria websites every so often as a "new horde" turns up somewhere. They generally go for anything between 15-30 euro's depending on condition. One thing that's made me wonder about this trade is if it's actually legal or is it basically drug dealing considering what the tablets constituents actually are?8O
 

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