Dönitz: The Last Führer
By Peter Padfield
Now updated with a new postscript, this is the definitive biography of Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz, one of the major commanders of the Second World War.
Regarded by his admirers as being among the greatest of all German war leaders (and by his detractors as the ‘Devil’s Admiral’), as supreme commander of the navy he was responsible for the staggering death toll incurred by the young men he sent out in U-boats to fight the Battle of the Atlantic. It was these attacks that threatened to cut the Allies’ shipping lifeline and caused Churchill to confess in his memoirs that U-boats were the only thing that caused him real anxiety.
But this revealing book is more than a study of war at sea; it is a portrait of a dedicated officer, corrupted by his need for a cause and a leader to serve – Dönitz discovered both in Adolf Hitler, who, finding Dönitz his most loyal supporter and confidant, appointed him his successor, the last leader of the Third Reich.