Helvetica LightTitle: A Toast For You and Me, America's Participation, Sacrifice and Victory.
On August 22, 1936, the world went to Berlin to participate in the Summer Olympics. The city of Berlin, Germany welcomed the world and the 49 participating nations–albeit it was a Nazi Germany of the Third Reich. Despite a Great Depression, the Third Reich promised to also showcase a rebuilt Germany. In 1936, Hitler was not annexing lands all over Europe and the world, for the most part because, this was a time antecedent the precarious months when Hitler starting annexing lands and peoples, years before WW II began.
Change had taken place in Germany, especially compared to the 1920s when Germany had angled towards “skid row”, or in 1931-1932 and the height of the economic Depression.
Twin dictators: Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler.
History and a Historian
Accessing the 1936 Olympics
The governmental policies of Hitler were modeled on Fascism. A theme of Fascism was “betterment and change.” In the mid 1920s, Mussolini established Fascism, abolished the Italian parliamentary system and created a one-party political system.
A Glimpse Into The Past
Individuals who live in a Fascist State (and Communist State) mean little. The citizens have little or no rights. The nation state is the highest form of society, and one must not battle against the state. Economically, with the magnified rights of the state, the government communicates about prosperity and strength.
Unlike the community-controlled classless society of Communism, Fascism permits a class different society. (Both believe in a class struggle, but the commies want to rid it altogether.) Historians call the 1936 Olympics a most political sporting event, or as one writer put it, “an epic clash between proponents of barbarism and those of civilization.” Berlin, the capital of Nazi Germany, was used by Hitler as a model of both Aryan efficiency and Aryan power. Not just a model of Fascism in the general sense, but to show the world how life for people inside Germany progressed and how strong they were. Nazi leaders cleaned up their act so that when the world came to see the summer Olympics–less people were thrown into jail and concentration camps, try not to show anti-semitism–at that time they wanted to show how social security, economics, industry, “nice” labor was getting along. This was a facade, but the leaders of Germany were no dummies.
Dissidents, trouble-makers, dirty streets, were “picked up”.
The facade was the job of the Reich Ministry for Propaganda and the police. The Olympics demanded considerable preparation and when it was ready, it was full of pageantry to symbolize a new Germany. May we suggest using your headphones when listening to the videos. In one event, Hitler met a Gold medalist from the 1896 Olympics and offered him an olive branch from Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic Games, as a symbol of peace. Five years later, Greece fell to German invasion and peace meant nothing.