Adolf Hitler and The Nazi Olympics
“Many Americans had their own opinions of Hitler in the beginning stages of the Olympics. Some thought very highly of him, such as Karl von Wiegand, a Hearst correspondent who was the first American journalist to interview Hitler in 1922. Wiegand reports that he was struck by Hitler’s skill with words, and his ability to whip people into a frenzy.
Other Americans opinions were not so favored in Germany. People would meet him and claim, “”This guy is a clown. He’s like a caricature of himself.”” Many civilians believed that even if Hitler was able to rise to a place of power, somehow other politicians would be able to control the actions he made. Although after Hitler gained so much popularity everyone began to reassess their former claims. These opinions did not stop Hitler from gaining power in followers, leading him to become chancellor. After Hitler won the election, and he started making questionable decisions, appropriately people started questioning his actions. There were not much the civilians could do to stop him because the Nazi era was already underway. ?
Hitler was elected chancellor in 1933 and had 3 years to establish a strong base of his inhuman plan for the Holocaust before he offered to host the 1936 Olympics to gain popularity. While the Olympic Games provided a platform to boots their adoration it also proved as a struggle to temporarily downplay the various racial policies as well as their repressive actions aimed at the Jewish. The Nazis may have done a decent job at hiding away the “”undesired”” but some Americans saw through the charade and tried to warn others. One of these men was Edgar Mowrer, the Chicago Daily News correspondent. He was a very lucky man to have a platform to voice his concern. He wrote in one of his articles, “”What he’s (Hitler) saying about the Jews is serious. Don’t underestimate him.”” The 1936 Olympics were more than just a worldwide sporting event, it was a show of Nazi propaganda, stirring significant conflict. The Nazis promoted an image of a new, strong, and united Germany while masking the regime’s targeting of Jews and other minority groups. And for two weeks in August, Hitler’s Nazi totalitarianism disguised its racist, aggressive character while hosting the Summer Olympics. He was also able to hide his plans for territorial expansion, the regime exploited the Games. He was able to provide many foreign observers and reporters with an image of an amicable, patient Germany which, in reality, was quite the opposite.
Off the Olympics field, the truth about what the Nazis were doing was hard to miss, the newspaper didn’t stop printing about what was really going on in the streets of Germany. It was not necessarily a secret, but Hitler did his best to hide away anyone that did not make the Arian race look superb. By 1936 Germany’s Jews were stripped of their civil rights such as citizenships along with the fact that Germany had already opened their first concentration camp. By this time most knew there was some sort of uprising going on, but a lot of people were very naive.
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“Many Americans had their own opinions of Hitler in the beginning stages of the Olympics. Some thought very highly of him, such as Karl von Wiegand, a Hearst correspondent who […]