Charité At War

This German Netflix production is set in the Charité hospital, a major teaching hospital in Berlin, in the latter days of World War II.  The medical staff, as always in war time, has to deal with the problems of too many people needing medical care and too few resources.  But this being Nazi Germany, they have a few additional problems.  Some diagnoses can have grave consequences – forced institutionalization, incarceration, even execution.

This 6-part miniseries shines a light on a particular facet of the Nazi eugenics program, under which hundreds of thousands of the mentally and physically disabled were either euthanized or, more horribly, left untreated with curable ailments.  This program got a fair amount of pushback when it was started in the 1930s, but, as this series makes clear, it continued in a less publicized fashion throughout the war.

Although this is a fictional story, some of the principal characters, including the chief surgeon and the head of psychiatry (a real bad actor) existed in real life, as did some of the dissidents sheltered for a while at the hospital.

It’s not always an easy program to watch, but well worth your time.  On Netflix.

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