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Hans George Fritzsche

Head of State Ministry for
Public Enlightenment and Propaganda
Head of State Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda.

Hans George Fritzsche (April 21, 1900 - September 27, 1953) was a senior Nazi official, ending the war as Ministerialdirektor at the Propagandaministerium.


Fritzsche was born in Bochum (a city in the Ruhr Area) and served in the German army from 1917. Post-war he studied briefly at a number of universities before becoming a journalist for the Hugenberg Press and then involved in the new mass media of the radio, working for the German government. In September 1932 he was made head of the Drahtloser Dienst (the wireless news service). On May 1, 1933, he joined the NSDAP. Under Joseph Goebbels' Reich Ministry he continued to head the radio department before being promoted to the News Section at the Ministry. In mid-1938 he became deputy to Alfred Berndt at the German Press Division. Responsible for controlling German news, the agency was also called the Home or Domestic Press Division. In December 1938 he was made chief of the Home Press Division. In May 1942 Goebbels took personal control of the division, and Fritzsche returned to radio work for the Ministry as Plenipotentiary for the Political Organization of the Greater German Radio and head of the Radio Division of the Ministry.

Military Tribunal

Fritzsche was taken prisoner by Soviet soldiers in Berlin on May 2, 1945. He was tried before the International Military Tribunal. In place of the deceased Goebbels, he was charged with conspiracy to commit crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity. He was one of only three Nazi figures to be acquitted at Nuremberg, but he was soon charged with other crimes and was eventually sentenced to nine years. He was released in September 1950 and died of cancer soon afterwards. His wife Hildegard Fritzsche (née Springer) died the same year.

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