Stunned BBC Radio listeners heard the news anchor make this
As far as dictators go you can’t get much worse than Adolf Hitler, but no matter how many horrible atrocities he was responsible for there was still a woman who loved him. While Braun may not have been the most compelling of Nazi mistresses or wives, she still played a vital role in Hitler’s life throughout his entire rule.
- Braun was born in 1909 making her 23 years younger than Adolf Hitler
- She worked as a shop assistant and model for Hitler’s official photographer, Heinrich Hoffman
- Braun and Hitler began seeing more of each other after Hitler’s half-niece committed suicide but didn’t become lovers until a couple of years later
- Her first of two notable suicide attempts was in 1932 by shooting herself in the chest. Most speculate this was not a serious attempt and only done to get Hitler’s attention. Shortly after this attempt she was allowed to be a photographer for the Third Reich and travel with Hoffman and the rest of Hitler’s entourage.
- Two years later in 1935, Braun attempted suicide again this time by OD’ing on sleeping pills. Again, this attempt is considered another struggle to get Hitler’s attention. He then moved Braun and her sisters to a villa closer to where Hitler spent most of his time.
- Eventually, Braun was moved into Hitler’s household but she still had to remain a secret, often posing as a hostess when guests would arrive at the home.
- Though Braun was not married to Hitler, she quickly became untouchable after Hitler dismissed his half-sister (mother to his niece who had killed herself years earlier) after she protested Braun’s appearance at a Nuremberg rally.
- Their relationship was well known among Hitler’s inner circle, but it was not until after their deaths did the public know they had been lovers.
- The only photo of the two together that was published in the newspapers came from the Winter Olympics of 1936 when she was pictured sitting near him, not even next to him
- Braun never played a pivotal role in Hitler’s politics, she was mainly interested in photography and the cinema. She was not allowed to participate in cabinet meetings and would be sent away when politicians came to speak to Hitler
- In 1943, Braun expressed her displeasure in the idea of a “total war economy” because this would likely lead to a ban on women’s cosmetics. Hitler then instructed his armaments minister to temporarily halt the production of cosmetics rather than completely ban them.
- Hitler added Braun to his will and required she be sent 12,000 Reichsmarks yearly in the event of his death.
- The two married less than 40 hours before they would both commit suicide, he by a gunshot to the temple and she by cyanide capsule.