Germany’s Future: The Hitler Youth
When the nazi party started their reign, they envisioned their existence lasting for over a hundred years. With this long lasting vision, the Nazi party started to invest in their future, that investment for this long term plan, began with what was known as Hitlerjungend or Hitler’s Youth. The Hitler Youth was an organization created for the young boys in Germany in which they were metaphorically bathed in Nazi ideals: “Above all, the Hitler Youth fostered military values and virtues such as duty, obedience, honor courage, strength, and ruthlessness.”(1) By stressing these ordeals early on, it implanted these certain aspects and ideals into the brains of the young which they would then, more than likely, carry with them for many many years to come.
When the Hitler Youth first began, not every boy had to be part of it, “By 1936, about 63 percent of ten- to eighteen-year-olds belonged to the Hitler Youth.”(2) But that changed a few years later, in 1939 every boy was required to be part of the Hitler Youth and take an oath to Hitler. By making the engagement in the Hitler Youth required, it really maximized the overall effort and effectiveness of the Hitler Youth program. It simply just put more young boys under the influence of the Nazi ideals.
As shown here, the young boys in the Hitler Youth were dressed in military like clothing. They have on uniforms just like the German military does, enforcing a unity or the overall idea of community. The look in their faces—to me—does not look like the faces of an ordinary young boy. It looks as if they are hardened, which I believe would be a result of their constant training and drilling.
(1)Jackson J. Spielvogel and David Redles, Hitler and Nazi Germany (New Jersey: Pearson, 2014), 165.
(2) Spielvogel and Redles, 164.
Photo: Kyle Frabotta, “The Mindset of the Hitler-Jugend”, http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=hitler+youth&view=detailv2&&id=F00F342907041B7D111C910DACE3702CBAD2A019&selectedIndex=3&ccid=HKSjM1TW&simid=608044293293346584&thid=OIP.M1ca4a33354d6bc585b0e2953dea5b0ecH0&ajaxhist=0