Armoured Trooper Visits The Reichskabinettsaal

In an internationally syndicated photo, Trooper Edward Law of the Royal Armoured Corps relaxes in the ruins of the Chancellery Reichskabinettsaal ("Reich Cabinet Room"). Law is resting his feet on the table designed by Paul Troost in 1933. He is probably sitting in one of the expensive chairs Troost designed to go with the table. The day this photo was taken, July 16, 1945, Prime Minister Winston Churchill was also touring the ruins of the Chancellery. Trooper Law is wearing his battle dress uniform, likely in practice for the Potsdam Conference Parade later that week on July 21, 1945. When this photo was circulated in August 1945, newspapers reported that this was the table Hitler used to plan world domination, but he rarely used the Reich Conference Room because his subordinates did not get along and could not be in the same room together. Hitler actively pitted them against each other for his favor as a way of deflecting animosity towards himself. The Reichskabinettsaal was destroyed during the Battle of Berlin in April-May 1945, but the table was broken as it is seen here sometime shortly before this photo was taken; photo wwii0269.jpg shows the table intact. Note the graffiti written in the dust and the marble walls. Some of the red marble from the New Chancellery was used by the Communists to build the Soviet war memorial in East Berlin.
Caption Written By: 
Jason McDonald
Reichskabinettsaal in the Reich