Volume 1  –  document 238

On 16 July 1936 the Reich Circle for Propaganda and Public Enlightenment issues recommendations for the conduct of the SA towards foreigners and Jews during the Olympic Games1BArch, NS 23/556. This document has been translated from German.

Notification from the director of the Reich Circle for Propaganda and Public Enlightenment,2The Reich Circle for National Socialist Propaganda and Public Enlightenment was under the command of the Chief of Staff of the NSDAP Reichsleitung for Propaganda. Established by Walter Tießler in 1934, it had the task of coordinating the propaganda of all the organizations of the NSDAP and their affiliated associations. Tießler,3Walter Tießler (b. 1903), Party official; joined the NSDAP in 1922; Kreisleiter from 1925; part of the Halle Gauleitung for Propaganda from 1926; employed in the Munich Reichsleitung for Propaganda from 1934; head of the Reich Circle for National Socialist Propaganda and Public Enlightenment, 1934–1944; department head in the staff of the Deputy of the Führer from1940, liaison office to Goebbels; liaison of the Party Chancellery to Governor General Frank, 1944. Munich, 16 July 1936, for the SA, communicated via a circular from the Supreme SA Command (F 1 a Nr. 11 159), chief of the Command Office, p.p. Michaelis,4Rudolf Michaelis (1902–1945), engineer; joined the NSDAP in 1923; member of the ‘Black Reichswehr’, illegal paramilitary formations that existed alongside the Reichswehr; SA-Brigadeführer and department head of the Supreme SA Command, 1934; chief of the Office for Physical Training in the Supreme SA Command, 1937–1938; SA-Gruppenführer, 1938; fought in the war from 1940. Munich, for disclosure to the officers, NCOs, and men of the SA, dated 22 July 1936 (printed)5The original bears the circulation stamp of the Judicial and Legal Office of the Supreme SA Command and handwritten processing notes.

First communiqué of the Reich Circle for National Socialist Propaganda and Public Enlightenment.

On Saturday 11 July 1935, the world received fresh evidence attesting to the new Germany’s love of peace. The German-Austrian Agreement is another step towards securing peace in Europe and the world.6On 11 July 1936 the German Reich assured Austria that it would respect its sovereignty. A joint communiqué to this effect was issued. In a secret ‘gentlemen’s agreement’, Austria promised, among other things, to align its foreign policy with that of the Third Reich; facsimiles of both documents are in Gabriele Volsansky, Pakt auf Zeit: Das Deutsch-Österreichische Juli-Abkommen 1936 (Vienna: Böhlau, 2001), pp. 285–292. This new proof of peaceful intentions is so convincing that even the most malicious opponent could hardly make any objections to it. And yet we still have the task of convincing the rest of the world that peace, order, and security reign in Germany and that the German people desire peace with all their hearts.

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to show this to the entire world is the upcoming Olympic Games.7The 11th Olympic Summer Games took place from 1 to 16 August 1936 in Berlin. Representatives of almost all the states in the world are coming to Germany as athletes or spectators, and they will report on what they found in Germany when they return to their own countries.

It is therefore the task of every single German to bear in mind in the coming weeks that the impression that the visitors to the Olympic Games take home also depends on every last German Volksgenosse. Especially now, every person has to realize that he is also a propagandist for the new Germany. Therefore, it is also the special task of the SA to point out among acquaintances in a subtle yet emphatic way just how important the coming weeks are for the future of Germany and its further development. During these weeks of the Olympic Games, we want to prove to the rest of the world that it is a lie, despite what has been repeatedly claimed abroad, that the persecution of the Jews is part of the agenda in Germany. The Olympic visitors should learn the truth that every foreigner in Germany, including the Jews, can live unmolested. For this reason, we need to avoid anything that might give rise to a false impression. Therefore, even songs from the struggle before the National Socialist entry to power, which might potentially give a false impression in this regard, should not be sung because the foreigners do not know that these are just old fighting songs and they might read the text of these songs in a different light, which might lead them to make false assumptions.

In particular, it must be clear to each and every German Volksgenosse that not only should all foreigners be treated with courtesy as a matter of course, but also that even if a foreigner does not necessarily behave properly, no Volksgenosse has the right to take matters into his own hands. Instead, he should contact the police if the case is serious. In this context, we would like to remind you once again of the appeal made by the Reichsleiter for Propaganda:

According to the will of the Führer, Germany has made preparations for the 1936 Olympic Games like hardly any country before. The hundreds of thousands of foreign guests should be received in an appropriate manner and experience German hospitality at its very best. I am certain that every German will uphold his honour in taking pains to be courteous towards the foreign visitors, all of whom stand under the protection of the German Reich, and, if one of them should require help, in offering assistance in word and deed.8The appeal could not be found.

This document is part of:
German Reich 1933–1937 (Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter, 2019)