Forbidden History

By Like A Shot Entertainment

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Description

Forbidden History is a documentary podcast series which explores the past’s darkest corners, sheds light on the lives of intriguing individuals, and uncovers the truth buried deep in history’s most controversial legacies. Hosted by Janine Harouni, each episode will delve into the history archives to reveal new perspectives on familiar stories.  Series one starts 12th October.

Episode Date
The Madness of King Ludwig II
2282
On the 13th of June 1886, the body of Ludwig II, the so-called Mad King of Bavaria, was found floating in two feet of water on Lake Starnberg, Germany. The official verdict given by the authorities was suicide by drowning. But the suspicious circumstances surrounding his death, and the strange events that took place in the lead up to it have led many to believe it was no suicide.  Instead, they believe he was in fact killed by his own government, who have covered up his murder for over 100 years.   If you unravel the life of this unconventional monarch, you reveal the story behind one of Germany’s most enduring mysteries. A king loved by his people but hated by his government. Throughout his life, the young king did repeatedly test the patience of his ministers. More interested in music, the arts and architecture, the royal’s fascination for the whimsical seemed to leave little time for affairs of state. With expenditures growing and debts mounting as he chased his dreams for romantic architecture, is it only a story that his government would form a plot to seize power?   The death of King Ludwig II of Bavaria has been the subject of intrigue and investigation for over a century. How did a king once famous for his eccentric behaviour and fairy-tale castles end up being declared insane, removed from his throne, and found floating face down in shallow water near the shores of a remote Lake?  In this episode we explore the history of Bavaria’s supposedly mad king and question was his death the result of a deteriorating mental state, or were more darker forces at play?  Cast List:  James Sherwood  An author, curator and broadcaster specialising in sartorial and royal history, fashion and bespoke tailoring, whose work has featured in the Financial Times, the International Herald Tribune, and the Independent on Sunday.   Ann Marie Ackerman  A former American prosecutor, now a successful True Crime writer specialising in unusual German historic crimes, her latest work being “Death of an Assassin”.    Guy Walters  A British author, historian, and journalist, he has written several books on WWII. As a journalist for The Times, he writes on historical topics for the national press.  Ken Hollings  A writer, broadcaster and cultural theorist, whose work includes “Welcome to Mars”, and “The Bright Labyrinth”. He is currently a lecturer at the Royal College of Art specialising in experimental communication and the evolving relationship between culture and technology.   Dr Gerhard Immler  The Chief Archive Director of the Bavarian State Archives in Munich. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 23, 2022
The Murder Bureau
2134
It is August 1978; Georgi Markov is in his London flat when the phone rings. He’s greeted by the sound of a cold and distorted voice. “Georgi Markov you’re going to die”.   Markov is used to these death threats; he could set his watch by them. And so, he replies in his usual laconic way, “Killing me will only make me a martyr”.   He is about to hang up but for once the voice has a comeback.   “Not this time. This time you will not become a martyr. It will look as if you died of natural causes. You will be killed by a poison that the West can neither detect nor treat”.   A month later, Markov would be dead. But little did the murderer know that by giving Markov this warning they would turn what looked like a natural death into a full-scale murder inquiry.   It would become the most famous assassination of the Cold War, and yet to this day no one has been charged with his murder. However recently declassified documents may shed light on who was responsible and uncover the shadowy work of a mysterious organisation known as Service 7 or, more bluntly, the ‘Murder Bureau’.   In this episode we re-examine the case files of this long unsolved assassination, explore the tactics and gadgetry used in a secret war played out across Europe and unravel the history of the illusive Murder Bureau.    Cast List:  Guy Walters  A British author, historian, and journalist, he has written several books on WWII. As a journalist for The Times, he writes on historical topics for the national press.  Boris Volodarksy  A former officer in Russian Military Intelligence, now a historian and author specialising in Soviet intelligence operations. He is the writer of several works, the most notable being “The KGB's Poison Factory: From Lenin to Litvinenko”.   Alexenia Dimitrova  A Bulgarian journalist and author with 27 years experience in journalism. Her books include “War of the Spies” and “Murder Bureau”.   Richard Felix  A historian and lecturer specialising in local and paranormal history.   Natalia Mehneva  The daughter of Traycho Belopopski, a former target of the Murder Bureau. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 16, 2022
Finding Mary Magdalene
2331
According to all four gospels, Jesus chose one person as the first witness of his resurrection. One person, who was entrusted with spreading this momentous news; a follower whose life is still shrouded by conspiracy, the mysterious Mary Magdalene.   2000 years on, Mary continues to be one of the churches most disputed subjects. Some believe she was a prostitute; many claim she was Jesus’s most devoted disciple and was at the heart of the Christian faith. However, some suggest she was much more.    In Southern France two treasure hunters are pursuing a new lead in their search for her remains, arguably the remains of the most significant woman in history.    Pat Jokl and his friend Ronnie are history enthusiasts who have spent 20 years trying to uncover the whereabouts of Mary Magdalene’s Tomb. After the resurrection, the Bible sheds little light on what happened to her next with many believing she was deliberately written out of history. In this episode we follow Pat Jokl and his team on their biblical treasure hunt, tracing what many believe to be the journey Mary Magdalene took after the resurrection to spread the true word of the Christian faith.   With an unearthed set of 13th century documents from the French archive suggesting a medieval aristocrat stole the Saint’s remains, Pat believes he’s one step closer to finding Mary Magdalene’s burial site in Southern France. Armed with new equipment and this vital lead could this be moment he solves one of the bible’s greatest mysteries? Could this be the moment he finally finds Mary Magdalene?  Cast List:   Pat Jokl  A treasure hunter who has been searching for Mary Magdalene’s remains for over 20 years.    Tony McMahon  A former BBC news producer, award short-listed author, print journalist and historian.   Dr Karen Bellinger   An anthropologist, archaeologist and historian whose work focuses on early modern European culture and society and its colonial expansion throughout the Atlantic world.   Lynn Picknett  A historian and researcher specialising in exposing historical conspiracies, she is co-author to several notable works including “Turin Shroud: How Leonardo da Vinci Fooled History” and “War of the Windsors”  Father Florian Racine  The rector of the Basilica of St. Mary Magdalene church in Saint-Maximin. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 09, 2022
The Hitler Diaries
2353
It is the early 1980s, and in a house in West Germany a man called Gerd Heidemann is flicking through a book with mounting excitement. Sentences leap from the page:   ‘The burning of the books was not a good idea of Goebbels’,    ‘I have violent flatulence, and – says Eva – bad breath’,    ‘The measures against the Jews are too strong for me’.   The book he is reading is one of over sixty volumes of the revelatory personal diaries of Adolf Hitler himself. Through Heidemann they will be purchased for millions of dollars and published in the world’s leading newspapers and magazines. However, on publication day, with the world captivated by the opportunity to read the inner-most thoughts of the most notorious dictator in history, the scoop of the century falls apart. The diaries are total fakes and not even particularly good ones.   In this episode we explore the story of Gerd Heidemann and how he and many others fell victim to a now notorious conman and forger. Starting with how Heidemann was captivated by a historic find he couldn’t ignore, to how simple forgeries made their way through authentication unscathed, to finally how the historic find of the century was shattered on the day of its publication.   So how were some of the world’s foremost journalists conned, and who was behind a fraud that has gone down in media history?    Cast List:   Guy Walters  A British author, historian, and journalist, he has written several books on WWII. As a journalist for The Times, he writes on historical topics for the national press.  Dr Linda Papadopoulos   The Reader in Psychology at London Metropolitan University, with a 17-year career working as a research scientist and practicing psychologist.   Magnus Linklater  A journalist, writer, and former newspaper editor, he was the Executive Editor of Features at the Sunday Times during the Hitler Diaries scandal.   Gerd Heidemann   A former journalist for Stern Magazine, he was the first to bring the diaries to the attention of the media. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 02, 2022
The S-Bahn Murderer: A Serial Killer in Nazi Berlin
2175
It’s 1940 and there’s a serial killer on the streets of Berlin looking for his next victim. Elfreda Franka is travelling home on the late train after work. Sitting alone in the dark carriage she stares out of the window as the train pulls into a station.    Another passenger gets onboard.    Curious but unable to make out their features, Elfrieda continues to stare out into the pitch black as the train departs. The stranger quietly approaches Elfrieda and before she can sense danger, she feels a cold, hard and heavy object strike her. She was not the first and wouldn’t be the last victim of the S-Bahn murderer.  This is a true story about the crimes of a mass murderer, who assaulted and fatally attacked women on a killing spree that lasted nine months. In this episode we follow the work the Criminal Politici and their lead investigator Police Commissioner Wilhelm Ludtke, as he and his team of detectives worked tirelessly to track down this illusive killer.  However, as the body count mounted the detectives not only had to track down this violent phantom but had to do so against the ever-growing interferences and limitations of Nazi High Command. This is the story of a hunt for truth in a political landscape where the “truth” was whatever Hitler deemed it to be.   Despite a thorough investigation, how did the killer avert the police for so long? Why did Nazi High command want to keep it a secret? And how did they finally catch the illusive killer?     Cast List:   David Thomas  The Author of historical crime thrillers such as “Ostland” and an award-winning journalist, with twenty-five years of experience working for Fleet Street newspapers.  Roger Moorhouse  A historian and author of many books on the second World War, including ‘Killing Hitler’. He is a specialist in modern German history with particular focus on Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich.  Dr Linda Papadopoulos  The Reader in Psychology at London Metropolitan University, with a 17-year career working as a research scientist and practicing psychologist.  Dr Jens Dobler  The official historian for the Berlin Police Department. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 26, 2022
The Strange Life of Peter the Great
2471
It’s the early morning of June the 26th, 1718 and in the basement of the Peter and Paul Fortress in St Petersburg, Russia, lies a young man. His face is covered in bruises, his back is bleeding, and his eyes are sunken holes in their sockets, wreathed in black. The door is flung open, and another man strides into the prison chamber. In his hand is a hard leather whip about three and a half feet long, ending in a beak-like hook.  He walks over to the prisoner, who closes his eyes and quietly sobs. He knows what’s coming.  The prisoner is Tsarevich Alexei, heir to the Russian throne. His torturer is his own father, Tsar Peter the Great.   Peter the Great was one of the most bloody and brutal rulers in Russian history. Known for leading his own torture interrogations, and using forced labour to construct his architectural visions, his son is only one of thousands of people who will suffer at his hands during his reign. Yet he is remembered as one of Russia’s greatest ever rulers. Creating a navy, a city, and being one of the first Tsars to travel Europe in 100 years, his love of science and learning saw him transform his antiquated realm into a European power of the modern age.   But given the high price paid by his people, his predisposition for violence, and how the future of his reign was cemented by torture, can he truly be seen as Peter ‘the Great’ today?    Cast List:   Tony McMahon  A former BBC news producer, award short-listed author, print journalist and historian.   Hallie Rubenhold   A bestselling author, social historian and historical consultant for TV and film. Her notable works include “The Five; The Untold Lives of The Women Killed by Jack the Ripper” and “The Covent Garden Ladies”.   Nigel Jones   A historian, journalist, former deputy editor of History Today magazine and former reviews editor of the BBC’s History Magazine.   Dominic Selwood  A historian, barrister, bestselling author, novelist, and frequent contributor to national newspapers including The Independent, The Spectator and The Daily telegraph.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 19, 2022
Hitler’s Niece - Suicide or Murder?
2115
It’s the morning of September 18th, 1931, and through the walls of their apartment in Munich, Germany, a man and woman can be heard arguing. The man is Adolf Hitler, who would go on to lead as German Chancellor and be one of the world’s most infamous dictators who committed heinous crimes against humanity. The woman, his 23-year-old niece, Geli Raubal.    Within hours of the argument, Geli was dead from a gunshot wound to the chest. The gun was Hitler’s.   The official verdict ruled her death a suicide, but with rumours of an inappropriate relationship with her uncle did Geli Raubal kill herself or was it a Nazi murder cover-up?  In this episode we look at Geli Raubal’s life and death under closer examination, to see how conclusions drawn in the case are now being questioned as to their accuracy. Does the evidence suggest she was involved in a violent altercation before her fatal shooting? Is the angle of the gunshot wound unusual for a suicide attempt? Do multiple witness statements contradict Hitler’s testimony?   These events and the secrecy surrounding the investigation have caused many to question the official verdict with suggestions of incest, murder, and a cover up within the Nazi Party just before they seized power. So, what is the truth? Was this suicide or murder? And how did this case affect the Nazi Party’s rise to power?    Cast List:   Gerhard Fuermetz   A German historian and researcher from Augsburg University.   Dr Linda Papadopoulos  The Reader in Psychology at London Metropolitan University, with a 17-year career working as a research scientist and practicing psychologist.  Nigel Jones  A historian, journalist and former deputy editor of History Today magazine and former reviews editor of BBC History Magazine.   Roger Moorhouse  A historian and author of many books on the Second World War, including ‘Killing Hitler’. He is a specialist in modern German history with particular focus on Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 12, 2022
Prince George – Tragedy or Treason?
2127
On the 25th of August 1942, during the height of the Second World War, a flying boat destined for Reykjavik in Iceland crashed into the side of a hill in the Scottish Highlands. Among those who lost their lives was the VIP they were transporting. He was Prince George, Duke of Kent, brother of King George VI of the United Kingdom and uncle to the current monarch, Queen Elizabeth II.    During his lifetime, George became one of the best-known public figures of the age, yet after his mysterious death the details of his life were seemingly erased from history. Some believe that this is the result of a government cover up, but what were they trying to hide?   In his youth the duke was one of the more scandalous members of the royal family. Wherever he would travel rumours would follow him of fleeting affairs, drug addictions, illegitimate children, and relationships with men.   In his later life, once settled and married, some have theorised his involvement in espionage through WWII, with stories of him attending secret meetings with representatives of global powers. Others however paint a far darker picture of the duke’s true intentions suggesting the theory he was plotting to overturn the British Government, fraternising with the enemy and negotiating peace with Adolf Hitler.   In this episode, we examine the life of Prince George, Duke of Kent and discover just what had the prince been involved in, and did it play a part in his untimely death?    Cast List:   Christopher Warwick  A royal biographer and historian, he is the author of fourteen published books on modern royal subjects and is the authorized biographer of HRH the Princess Margaret.   Dr Caroline Porter  A British historian specialising on the 20th Century.    Guy Walters   A British author, historian, and journalist who has written several books on WWII. As a journalist for The Times, he writes on historical topics for the national press.    Lynn Picknett   A historian and researcher specialising in exposing historical conspiracies, she is co-author to several notable works including “Turin Shroud: How Leonardo da Vinci Fooled History” and “War of the Windsors”  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 12, 2022
Introducing: Forbidden History
92
Forbidden History is a documentary podcast series which explores the past’s darkest corners, sheds light on the lives of intriguing individuals, and uncovers the truth buried deep in history’s most controversial legacies. Hosted by Janine Harouni, each episode will delve into the history archives to reveal new perspectives on familiar stories.  Series one starts October 12th. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 28, 2022