What now actually became of Hitler's body? To what
extent was it burned? Did the Russians find anything resembling
a corpse? The burning of a corpse in the open is not of course comparable
to a cremation in a crematorium, and not even to the burning of
a body or parts of a body in a stove such as occurs from time to
time in criminal cases.
During a cremation, the enveloping heat reflected
from the walls of the oven leads to the intensive destruction of
organic matter. If a corpse is burned in the open, as was the case
with Hitler and Eva Braun-Hitler, the distribution of heat varies
and consequently so does the depth of destruction, besides which
much heat is lost by radiation into the atmosphere. When a human
body is burned in the open by means of petrol, the first thing that
burns off is the extraneous petrol, which causes a strong heating
up of the corpse. Then, because they act like a wick, the fire spreads
to the clothes, which burn away more or less quickly depending on
the nature and structure of the fabric.
When the open flames then act directly on the body
surface for a longer period of time, the final result is carbonization.
During the process, steam forms in the subcutaneous tissue and in
the course of the burning the pressure can rise dramatically, so
that the body surface bursts open in many places, like an overheated
frozen burrito. The skull can also burst from the same effect. The
heat causes the protein in the cells of the muscles to congeal,
which then contract. This leads to contortions of the arms or the
lifting up and contracting of the upper body and legs, which stay
in this position because of posthumous heat rigor mortis, which
is called the "fencer's stance."
The heat causes the body fat to melt and the fatty
acids released to run out of the gashes in the skin. Because of
the major loss of water and fat, the carbonated corpse or torso
shrinks to a substantial degree. If the burning continues for an
extended period of time, the soft tissue is almost completely consumed.
The only thing remains is fragile, calcified bones that can easily
disintegrate even without external force being applied.
As a result, it is very unlikely that anything resembling
a human corpse remained following Adolf Hitler's post-mortem burning.
According to Gunsche, "That Adolf Hitler was
not completely burnt up with the help of the petrol is correct.
The remains were scattered and shell fire did the rest... The heavy
artillery and napalm fire went on until 2 May. Nothing was left
that could point to Hitler... Often I can only shake my head about
the claims of so-called witnesses, some of whom were not even there
and are only repeating hearsay from others as their own observations.
Maybe such claims, which were made immediately after the end of
the war and have been repeated in various versions, are the answer
to the fact that no one was in a position to prove what was left
of the Fuhrer's corpse and where this could be seen. None of the
reports about this can be proved: they are falsification... The
destruction of the Fuhrer's corpse and that of his wife was complete
through various causes."
Therefore, it is most likely nonsense that the Russians,
as they claimed several weeks after his death, ever found Hitler's
body/corpse. To this day the Russians have not presented a single
piece of evidence that they found Hitler's corpse. Where are the
authentic photographs? Where is the allegedly lead-lined box with
Hitler's identifiable corpse? Why was this not shown to the German
witnesses the Russians had captured? Even though in 1945--and during
their reconstruction of the events in 1946--the Russians kept telling
Linge, Gunsche, Baur, Hofbeck, Henschel and the others that they
would be "confronted with Hitler's body," they never showed
it to any of these people.
Flugkapitan Hans Baur said on November 24, 1995,
"...After we arrived in Berlin, I was interrogated by a Commissar
I already knew called Krause (Klausen), who had come with us from
Moscow. This Commissar held the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel . He
told me that it was now high time to decide what to do with the
corpses. We would be shown the bodies and should say whether we
recognized any features which could indicate the identity of Hitler
or Eva Braun. Up to now the bodies had been preserved. It was now
time to decide if this should remain so or whether they should be
destroyed. A confrontation with the corpses did not take place,
The only person who claimed to have seen Hitler's
corpse is Harry Mengershausen. He recalled that, in early June 1945,
an inspection of "the place" where Hitler's corpse had
allegedly been buried took place. The crater had been dug up. We
must remember that the garden of the Chancellory and the area around
the bunker was a huge field of craters. That Mengershausen spoke
of a specific crater is already an indication that he was lying.
Mengershausen goes on to say that in early July he was taken from
the prison in Friedrichshagen to an open pit in woods nearby in
order to identify three corpses. Each of the corpses was by itself
in a "small wooden casket." The corpses had been those
of Hitler and Herr and Frau Goebbels. Mengershausen claims to have
"clearly recognized" Hitler by the shape of the head,
the distinctive shape of the nose and the missing feet. "From
the distance" he had not been able to see if Hitler's jaw had
still been there. The whole "viewing of the bodies" had
lasted for less than two minutes.
Once again, Mengershausen is telling a story--in
great detail as usual--that simply does not fit the circumstances.
It is impossible that Mengershausen was able to detect the "distinctive
shape of Hitler's nose." The nose, like all the other soft
tissues of the face, the torso and the extremities, must surely
have burned away during the relatively long cremation process. A
skull that is exposed to strong heat can preserve its bony shape
for quite some time, but not its distinctive features, which it
takes from the soft tissue of the face.
There was another witness available in 1945, who
had been as closely involved in the final phase of the destruction
of Adolf Hitler's and Eva Braun's bodies as Harry Mengershausen,
if not more closely. This witness was Hermann Karnau who was a prisoner of the British. On November 13,
1953, Karnau recounted, "In November 1945 I was taken from
Esterwegwn to Berlin. Here I was told by an officer of the Secret
Service that I was to lend a hand in the local search for Hitler's
remains. However, this did not take place because of the refusal
of the Russians."