The Third Reich
Nazi Propaganda

1935-1938

 

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  • 1936

 

This is cover for the concluding Olympic Edition of Berlin's largest Newspaper, the Berlin Illustrated. The caption at the bottom reads:

Final Report in Word and Text:
The Sixteen Days of the Olympic Games
 

The cover is of course adapted from Ludwig Hohlwein's poster for the games, and shows a blonde athlete being crowned by an equally blonde young woman.

In addition to the surprising German dominance at the games, the whole spectacle had been a powerful propaganda coup.

While most countries were wallowing still in the Depression, visitors to Berlin found a country dynamically vigorous, orderly, and spruced up beyond all expectations. Many visitors arrived expecting to find Germans living in terror and cowed into obedience. This had been the tenor of western newspaper accounts for the past 18 or so months.

Instead, they found a nation of enthusiasts. The complicated arrangements went off without a hitch, and for the first time in Olympic history, the head of state was present at almost every major event. There were an immense number of receptions, and anyone who had the least bit of pull could get into one of these, with the opportunity of seeing Hitler and other prominant Nazis "up close."

Thousands of visitors went away praising the new Germany and especially its leader. For a country that had only six months before been pictured in the world press as dangerous and war-hungry, the games represented a complete turn-about.

Goebbels was later to say that the Olympic Games were the most precious kind of propaganda imaginable.

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