New Photos of Nazi Germany

This LiveJournal page has a number of photos of Nazi Germany. While the pictures are from the 1940s, the style (both composition and texture) are similar to 1950s reporting. Therefore, many feel as if they are from out of time.

nazi_germany_roadsigns

There is also a photo of a map of the war. In the map the Soviet Union is a dagger, falling down upon Europe. The “east-is-up” also makes the USSR look like some kind of serpent, threatening to strangle Japan.

world_war_ii_eurasia

Very interesting.

5 thoughts on “New Photos of Nazi Germany”

  1. Looking at maps of the Soviet Union makes me wonder how the Germans actually thought they would conquer that whole country? Even with extreme measures on partisan activities, it looks like a 100 year COIN operation?

    They really would have had their hands full. However, the Germans were disturbingly efficient. Its been estimated that the Germans killed 6,000,000 million Jews in the death camps. They were able to do this starting in 1941 and ending in 45.

    365 x 4 years = 1460 days.

    6,000,000 Jews /1460 days= 4109 deaths a day!

    If we add the other nationalities, it was around 12,000,000. This would double the 4109 to 8218. 8218/ 24 hours = 342 deaths an hour.

    This is efficiency at its scariest. In fact, whoever was running the Holocaust should have been running the German supply system, The German military was operationally poor, and had supply problems throughout the war. This probably indicates that the Holocaust took up most of the resources available. Its ironic that the Holocaust may have cost the Germans the war?

  2. “Looking at maps of the Soviet Union makes me wonder how the Germans actually thought they would conquer that whole country? Even with extreme measures on partisan activities, it looks like a 100 year COIN operation?”

    Unfortunately, the documents which detail exactly what the German planned to do with the Soviet Union were destroyed during the war.[1] However, testimony from surviving officers after the war indicates that the Germany never intended to hold territory beyond the Ural mountains. Mostly, the Germans seemed to have been interested in grabbing the natural resources of the Ukraine and destroying the Russian state. Their plans also involved allowing a large number of Ukrainians to be “Germanized”. We know that various non-German nationals from occupied countries were brought into the German army – probably about 1 million troops at its peak – and in The War of the World, Nail Ferguson mentions that the definition of which ethnic groups could and could not be “Germanized” was ever-expanding as the need for manpower became more and more pressing.

    In short, the German appear to have expected to co-opt tens of millions of former Soviet and East European citizens eventually. If you read the wiki article I cited their time horizons seem to be 25-30 years.

    “This probably indicates that the Holocaust took up most of the resources available. Its ironic that the Holocaust may have cost the Germans the war?”

    I always thought this seemed like a logical conclusion, but then I read Adam Tooze’s Wages of Destruction. [2] Tooze explains that, if your grand strategy is really to “Germanize” large swaths of Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, then many of the programs that we think of today as the Holocaust are necessary. Concentrating the civilians slave-labor force solved the logistical problem of distributing food while death camps eliminated both mouths that needed fed and potential insurgents. It would have been difficult if not impossible to separate the war aims from the Holocaust.

    [1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Generalplan_Ost

    [2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wages_of_Destruction

  3. Don’t forget that much of the holocaust occurred outside of the organized camps with which most of us associate the event. [1]

    “An adequate vision of the Holocaust would place Operation Reinhardt, the murder of the Polish Jews in 1942, at the center of its history. Polish Jews were the largest Jewish community in the world, Warsaw the most important Jewish city. This community was exterminated at Treblinka, Be zec, and Sobibor. Some 1.5 million Jews were killed at those three facilities, about 780,863 at Treblinka alone. Only a few dozen people survived these three death facilities. Be zec, though the third most important killing site of the Holocaust, after Auschwitz and Treblinka, is hardly known. Some 434,508 Jews perished at that death factory, and only two or three survived. About a million more Polish Jews were killed in other ways, some at Chelmno, Majdanek, or Auschwitz, many more shot in actions in the eastern half of the country.

    All in all, as many if not more Jews were killed by bullets as by gas, but they were killed by bullets in easterly locations that are blurred in painful remembrance. The second most important part of the Holocaust is the mass murder by bullets in eastern Poland and the Soviet Union. It began with SS Einsatzgruppen shootings of Jewish men in June 1941, expanded to the murder of Jewish women and children in July, and extended to the extermination of entire Jewish communities that August and September. By the end of 1941, the Germans (along with local auxiliaries and Romanian troops) had killed a million Jews in the Soviet Union and the Baltics. That is the equivalent of the total number of Jews killed at Auschwitz during the entire war. By the end of 1942, the Germans (again, with a great deal of local assistance) had shot another 700,000 Jews, and the Soviet Jewish populations under their control had ceased to exist.”

    To whit, a large part of the Nazi plan was to kill a lot of people to make space, Germanize those that were acceptable, keep some slavs as slaves and then push a rump Russia east of the Urals. Even that may have been controlled by controlling the Trans-Siberian railroad (recall the Czech Legion in WWI) [2]

    As for the pictures I think a lot of what we think of as old would look surprisingly modern if we just saw it in color. So much has changed in the last century, but I think modernity started about 100 years ago and I believe a contemporary of that time would find it easy to adapt to the technology of today.
    If you haven’t seen it, look at the newly found video footage of Anne Franke. [3] My first response was how modern it seemed.
    I think many of us want to think of such horrible wars as from some sort of pre-modern era and that humans are different now, but we’re just whistling past the graveyard with such thinking.

    [1]
    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/22875
    [2]
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czechoslovak_Legions
    [3]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4hvtXuO5GzU

  4. cryptical,

    Thanks for the info! Do you know which photos are from the post-war?

    Seerov,

    I read somewhere that Nazi Germany had the best-educated leadership in world history. The presense of double-doctorates (individuals with a PhD and MD, or MD and JD, or JD and PHD) in places you wouldn’t expect them took me back. The best and brightest of a generation were behind the National-Socialists.

    Thank God we won.

    Mark @ Zenpundit reviewed The Wages of Destruction, a book on the German economy under the Nazis [1]. Those fantastic engineers and thinkers were utterly confounded by a corrupt State Capitalist system.

    Brent,

    Very informative post. It reminds me of Rebecca West’s comparison of the Nazis to the Ottomans in Black Lamb and Grey Falcon. The desire to completely destroy the intellegentsia of occupied peoples. The difference, of course, is that the Ottomans successfully decapitated their host people, as well.

    elambend,

    The Anne Frank video is truly disturbing.

    I agree with your 100 year ago comment. The pace of qualitative change has slowed down dramatically in the past 100 years or so. Our grandparnets generation saw the emergence of the radio, the automobile, flight, and television. Recent changes have focused on reducing communication costs — very important, but not qualitatively shocking.

    [1] http://zenpundit.com/?p=2747

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