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Preserving Goebbels' bunker

Even by Nazi standards, Joseph Goebbels was a loathsome individual. Highly educated, even brilliant, he knew better than the Nazi claptrap he so effectively espoused.

Goebbels was a pioneer in putting mass communications - radio, newsreels, film, literature, the press - to the slavish service of a totalitarian state. A vicious anti-Semite, he masterminded the Nazi government's hate campaign against the Jews.It is a fitting irony that workers doing site preparation for Berlin's planned Holocaust Memorial have discovered Goebbels' bunker, lost and long-forgotten in the no-man's land of the old Berlin Wall. As the Third Reich collapsed in flames over his head, Goebbels, from the safety of his bomb-proof shelter, urged his countrymen to wage a scorched-earth war to the last German.

When the end was inevitable, Goebbels decamped to the nearby bunker of Adolf Hitler. There, Goebbels and his wife committed suicide but not before, in a final act of evil, he murdered his six children.

The city of Berlin is debating whether the bunker should be destroyed, filled in or turned into a museum. By all means, it should be a museum. Those dank, cramped, concrete-lined tunnels and the miserable existence within would be a constant reminder that the Nazi leaders died like the rats they were.