West Germany: The Cost of Incarceration

Something was dead in each of us,

And what was dead was Hope.

—Ballad of Reading Gaol

Nearly two decades ago, seven men stepped hopelessly from a van in the red brick forecourt of Berlin's Spandau Prison. They were the senior survivors of the 22 Nazis brought to trial for major war crimes at Nürnberg. Their compatriots in crime—among them Luftwaffe Boss Hermann Göring and Wehrmacht Chief Wilhelrn Keitel—had escaped imprisonment by either suicide or the noose.

Today only three of Spandau's original postwar prisoners remain: Youth Leader Baldur von Schirach, 59; Armaments Minister Albert Speer, 61; and that most mysterious of Hitler's...

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