Josef Goebbels
Historical Figure
Nationality: Germany (born in Prussia)
Date of Birth: 1897
Date of Death: 1945
Cause of Death: Suicide by firearm
Occupation: Journalist, Politician, Propagandist, Author of Non-Fiction
Spouse: Magda
Children: Six,all murdered by their parents
Political Party: NSDAP
Political Office(s): German legislator,
Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda,
Chancellor of Germany
Turtledove Appearances:
The Man With the Iron Heart
POD: May 29, 1942;
Relevant POD: May, 1945
Type of Appearance: Posthumous reference
POD: May 30, 1942
Appearance(s): In the Balance
Down to Earth
Type of Appearance: Contemporary references
Date of Death: 1965
Cause of Death: Killed during the Race-German War of 1965, probably by an explosive-metal bomb
In the Presence of Mine Enemies
POD: c. 1940
Type of Appearance: Posthumous reference
Date of Death: Unrevealed
"The Last Article"
POD: c. 1940
Type of Appearance: Contemporary reference

The War That Came Early
POD: July 20, 1936;
Relevant POD: September 29, 1938
Type of Appearance: Contemporary references throughout
Dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels (29 October 1897 – 1 May 1945) was a German politician and Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda in Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945. He was one of German dictator Adolf Hitler's closest associates and most devout followers. Goebbels was known for his zealous, energetic oratory and virulent anti-Semitism. He was an effective propagandist, perfecting the so-called "Big Lie" technique, which is based on the principle that a lie, if audacious enough and repeated enough times, will be believed by the masses.

As World War II ended, Goebbels became the Chancellor of Germany for one day. Then he and his wife killed their six children and committed suicide.

Josef Goebbels in The Man With the Iron HeartEdit

While Josef Goebbels had committed suicide shortly after Adolf Hitler did in 1945, the German Freedom Front made some use of Goebbels propaganda techniques in their subsequent resistance.[1]

Josef Goebbels in WorldwarEdit

Josef Goebbels (1897-1965) was an important member of the Nazi Party and a close advisor of Adolf Hitler. During World War II and the war against the Race's Conquest Fleet, Goebbels served as Germany's Propaganda Minister.[2] After Hitler's death, Goebbels attempted to become Führer and Chancellor of the Greater German Reich but he was defeated by SS chief Heinrich Himmler.[3] After Himmler's death in 1965, Goebbels once again attempted to become Führer, and secured seats on the Committee of Eight for himself and a few of his allies.[4] However, his ambitions were once again thwarted by an SS man, this time Ernst Kaltenbrunner.[5] Shortly afterwards, Goebbels was killed during the Race-German War of 1965 along with Kaltenbrunner himself and everyone else senior to Walter Dornberger.[6]

Josef Goebbels in In the Presence of Mine EnemiesEdit

Josef Goebbels was the first Minister of Propaganda of the Greater German Reich. The country's information and entertainment infrastructure made use of the model he established right into the 21st century.[7]

They also followed his penchant for adultery.[8]

Josef Goebbels in "The Last Article"Edit

After confronting Mohandas Gandhi in Nazi occupied India in 1947, German Field Marshal Walther Model remarked to his troops, "If we did not have Goebbels, this would be the one for the job." Gandhi responded in slow but clear German: "I thank you, Field Marshal, but I believe that to be no compliment."

Josef Goebbels in The War That Came EarlyEdit

Josef Goebbels' talent for propaganda was useful before and during the outbreak of the Second World War, and contributed to Germany's initial success. A Goebbels propaganda campaign had convinced France that the so-called Westwall was heavily fortified, thus slowing down the French invasion of Germany. In fact, the Westwall was nowhere near completion, and the complete parts were undermanned.[9]

In 1939, he was able to create doubt as to just who sank the SS Athenia, thus protecting the identity of U-boat commander Julius Lemp, and keeping the United States out of the war for the time being.[10]

As the war continued, Goebbels was tasked with downplaying the setbacks the German military experienced, such as the failure to take Paris before the end of 1939.[11] Goebbels himself appeared in public, taking in a night at the opera, to help the spirits of the German people up.[12]

In 1940, with the "big switch", which saw Britain and France join Germany against the Soviet Union, Goebbels's propaganda shifted, extolling the virtues of Germany's new allies. Naturally, after Britain and France both declared war on Germany again over the course of 1941, that propaganda shifted back to attacks.

Throughout 1942 and into 1943, Goebbels had to make increasingly untenable claims as to how well Germany was doing.[13] As 1943 closed, Goebbels was forced to loudly deny that the German people were growing increasingly dissatisfied with the course of the war and with Nazi rule.[14] Ultimately, his efforts to hide the truth were fruitless, and the German people were aware of Germany's precarious position.[15]

Finally, after Adolf Hitler declared war on the United States in March 1944, a group of military and political leaders calling itself the Committee for the Salvation of the German Nation decided that the war was unwinnable and took action.[16] When Hitler gave a broadcast speech in Münster about the insurrection taking place there, he was killed by a bomb planted by the Committee. Immediately the Committee took over the radio broadcast and their leader General Heinz Guderian announced Hitler's death and that the Committee was taking over. He also announced the imminent arrest of Goebbels, among other prominent Nazi leaders.[17] Goebbels immediately took refuge at the Italian embassy in Berlin.[18] However, as Hitler's surviving ally, Benito Mussolini, was facing troubles retaining power himself, Goebbels' fate was increasingly uncertain.[19]


  1. See, e.g. The Man With the Iron Heart, pg. 106.
  2. See, e.g., In the Balance, pg. 104; Second Contact pg. 168.
  3. Down to Earth, pg. 340.
  4. Ibid., pg. 344.
  5. Ibid., pg. 547.
  6. Ibid., pg. 614.
  7. See, e.g., In the Presence of Mine Enemies, pg. 49.
  8. Ibid., pg. 301.
  9. Hitler's War, pg. 79.
  10. Ibid., pg. 223
  11. West and East, pg. 75.
  12. Ibid., pg. 102.
  13. See, e.g., Last Orders, pg. 36.
  14. Ibid., pg. 199.
  15. Ibid., pg. 270.
  16. Last Orders, pgs. 300, 311, HC.
  17. Ibid, pgs. 299-300.
  18. Ibid, pg. 382.
  19. Ibid.
Political offices
Preceded by
Adolf Hitler
Chancellor of Germany
30 April - 1 May, 1945
Succeeded by
Lutz Graf Schwerin von Krosigk
Preceded by
Office created
Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda
Succeeded by
Werner Naumann
Political offices
(The War That Came Early)
Preceded by
Office created
Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda
Succeeded by
Office abolished
Political offices
(Fictional Work)
Preceded by
Office created
Reich Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda ("The Last Article")
Succeeded by
Incumbent at story's end, 1947