Paul Josef Goebbels (1897-1945), member of the German National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) and propaganda minister during the era of the Third Reich. Goebbels was an ardent admirer of Hitler and took office when the Nazis seized power in 1933. Goebbels joined the party in the 1920's during the time of the French occupation of the Ruhr.
A proponent of the concept of total war, Goebbels used his position as propaganda minister to exhort the German people to greater effort and efficiencies. During the latter stages of the war he was able to use the intrigues of the Nazi party to bring himself closer to Hitler.
As the war drew to an end Goebbels spent his last days with Hitler. After Hitler's suicide Goebbels decided that there would be no redemption for himself or his family. On May 1 1945 he had his children poisoned and then had himself and his wife shot by an aide.