Hitler Meets Chandra Bose


This rare photograph shows Hitler meeting Chandra Bose, a major figure in the Indian independence movement.Chandra Bose met the Nazi dictator in 1942, planning to get German support for independence.Bose had revived the Indian National Army. The reasons for this meeting are obvious on the part of Germany. Their intention was to undermine the British Empire. Hitler had hoped that the British would accept continental domination, as long as he left their domains intact. However, as the British refused to submit to Hitler’s bombing he began using other means to fight them. Bose seemed like a person that could be used for Nazi propaganda. Chandra Bose then realized that Germany was not reliable in the fight for Indian independence. The Free India Legion was not an effective fighting force  and given little power. Chandra Bose understood Hitler was attempting to use him to advance his own geopolitical aims. Around 1943 Bose left Germany and went to Japan. The Nazis were extremely racist, but they did work with non-whites in their quest to build the Third Reich. Hitler often said the British were a superior race to Indians, because so few of then were able to dominate the subcontinent. Nazi racial theories were discredited  and after the war the “inferior races” gained their independence. The Chandra Bose affair represents the complexities anti-colonial activists had to navigate in a world at war.


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