The statement that Goering was second-in-command only after the departure of Hess I'm pretty sure is false; Hess was Deputy Fuhrer, but I'm pretty sure that is not the same thing. Historyplace.com says " On April 21, 1933, he was made Deputy Führer, a figurehead position with mostly ceremonial duties"  which is pretty much in line with what's been my understanding. Hess was close to Hitler, but I think the idea of him ever taking over control of the Reich was not seriously entertained by anyone. Unlike Goering, he did not have any of the qualities of a leader. It was Martin Boorman more than anyone who really stepped into Hess shoes when he took off to Scotland (and was much more effective as well). So I'm going to remove that bit. PortlyMort 22:24, 22 July 2007 (EDT)
- After Hess's flight, the question of succession arose for both the Party & and the State. Even before Hess's flight, his succession in the Party was not contested, but to become Chancellor still was another matter. The fact is, filling the position of Chancellor was always a clouded issue since the death of Hindenburg when Hitler assumed both offices of President & Chancellor, as well as Party Fuhrer.
- After Hess's flight, and there being a war on, finally the issue of succession did meet some open discussion. Hitler signed a letter (I'm speaking from memory now) that basically said something to the effect in the event of Hitler's demise or incapacitation Goering would assume Hitler's duties, or something to that effect.
- But that was in 1941. Goering held the title of Reichsmarshall. Meanwhile Himmler was granted the title of Reichsfuhrer. Discussing what I'm about to say openly by anyone could be easily interpreted as plotting against the government, but the question was sometimes whispered, "What stands higher in a military hierarchy, a Marshall or a Fuhrer?" Himmler & his people were of the opinion the Reichfuhrer outranked the Reichmarshall.
- If you can understand some of this, you are beginning to see and understand how the Nazi regime functioned. But even stating plainly here that Goering ranked number two, while on paper in 1941 was true, as the war progressed, things changed. And it may be a bit of an unfounded exaggeration to say with absolute certainty that Goering was the number two man in 1945 when the War ended. RobS 22:39, 22 July 2007 (EDT)