Albert Speer, political technocrat

Topics: Nazi Germany, Albert Speer, The Holocaust Pages: 2 (1036 words) Published: September 1, 2014

“Speer was an apolitical technocrat”
There have been historical arguments over the idea of Albert Speer being an apolitical technocrat in regards to his career. Speer wasn’t an apolitical technocrat due to the use of slave labour for the production of armament, his visits to concentration camps such as Mauthausen camp and the horrific conditions he saw at the Dora missile factory, his knowledge of Himmler’s speech at Posen also his defence at the Nuremburg trials in 1945. Criticism of Speer’s success in armament production focuses on the human ‘cost’, much of the increase of armament production rested on the exploitation of foreign workers and the prisoners of war, whom were kept under horrific conditions. In the Nuremburg trials Albert Speer claimed that the appropriation of the workers was the responsibility of Fritz Saukel, his deputy. Fritz Saukel was known for being ruthless while carrying out his work, he wrote in his memorandum to his officials, “all men must be fed, housed and treated in such a way as to exploit them to the greatest possible extent at the absolute minimum of expenditure.” Although Speer only got 20 years at the Nuremburg trials and Fritz Saukel was sentenced to death it was Albert Speer as the minister who was responsible for the number of workers that were used and even the conditions in which they were forced to work in. In October 1971 Erich Goldhagen published an article entitled ‘Albert Speer, Himmler and the Final Solution’ about a secret meeting of the Nazi officials in Posen on 6th of October 1943. He claimed that Speer had spoken in the morning about the efforts of some Nazi Gauleiters had made to obstruct a total mobilisation of the economy and how it would be presented. However in the afternoon Himmler spoke in complete detail about the holocaust and the final solution. When the article was released in 1971 Albert Speer denied that he was at the afternoon session claiming that he had left to Rastenburg headquarters in East...
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