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Propaganda

Discussion in 'Prelude to War & Poland 1939' started by Javey74, Feb 8, 2017.

  1. Javey74

    Javey74 Member

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    Is is me not grasping something but who on earth invented the title of "Propaganda Minister" in Germany, which as we know was held by Joseph Goebbels, before the war started?

    Propaganda indirectly means telling lies to the people to further an effort of your own doing. If we had one today people would just laugh and not listen to anyone working under that heading. I think the nearest this day and age to that word is 'Spin'.

    When the war was turning against Germany by the end of 1942, even the top SS officials changed from the local German radio stations to the BBC, to get a true reflection of what was going on. Surely the German people must have been thinking that most things that were coming out of Goebbels media machine where false or over the top. It should not have took aerial bombing raids by American and British planes for people to realise it was all lies.

    I would have thought a title of "Information Minister" would have been better, even if they wanted to tell lies about what was going on, since to me Propaganda Minister just say it all.. :confused:
     
  2. Brian Smith

    Brian Smith Active Member

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  3. Javey74

    Javey74 Member

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    OMG Enlightenment as well, that's new, it truly does get worse.. :eek:
     
  4. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    The term propaganda, especially in the organizational sense, was not always seen in a negative light. Historically it was used quite often.
     
  5. Takao

    Takao Ace

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  6. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Would they? Just look at how popular CNN and Fox are. Usually, a given side will laugh at one, but listen to the other.
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard

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    More than telling "lies", the essence of the ministry was control. Remember, the main information for people were film and radio. If the content was slanted, people could be controlled. The ministry had the following departments:

    Organization
    The ministry was organized into seven departments.[4]
    1. Division I: Administration and legal
    2. Division II: Mass rallies; public health; youth; race
    3. Division III: Broadcasting
    4. Division IV: National and foreign press
    5. Division V: Films and film censorship
    6. Division VI: Art, music, and theatre
    7. Division VII: Protection against counter-propaganda, both foreign and domestic
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reich_Ministry_of_Public_Enlightenment_and_Propaganda
     
  8. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    In addition, the propaganda was instilled from the onset from youth to adulthood. Those sub organizations were embedded within the entire realm of society. Board games for children, personal radios, BDM and HJ curricula. Those who were raised within the regime were apt to follow the lead. However, those who were members of Germany proper in adulthood didn't necessarily go all in, but seeing a resurgence in their homeland was enough for them.
     
  9. Brian Smith

    Brian Smith Active Member

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    Cheers, this cut and paste of links kills me every time I try it. Lots more where this came from and I am sure with different levels of accuracy. Still an interesting subject.
     
  10. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana WW2|ORG Editor

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    "Advertising" is a much dirtier word for me, and it means pretty much the same thing but with a more commercial onus.
     
  11. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    No. While many tend to think of Propaganda as lies it's not (especially historically). Propaganda is simply providing information and/or disinformation to support a position (especially a political one). The best propaganda is at least based on fact. Especially if you are making a long tern effort. In that time frame I'm not sure anyone would have seen much difference in the titles of "information minister" vs "propaganda minister".

    The formalization of the "big lie" style of propaganda may even be traceable to the WWII period although it certainly existed before that.
     
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  12. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    Good point. The Second World War definitively displayed the spectrum of propaganda. It's successes and failures. It most certainly spread National Socialist political and antisemitic dogma which was "fact" based on the pillars of their ideology. After the failure to reach Moscow and the Wehrmacht was beaten back, it was wholly based on pure lies which in turn greatly minimized it's effect.
     
  13. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    I remember in a number of films I watched about WW2 when I was growing up that allied military personnel listened to some of the axis propaganda broadcasts for the humor. Whether or not these films were historically based or not that portrait seems accurate from what I've read since. They had become so familiar with just how far off base they were (the fact that as the war went on they seemed less and less based on reality didn't help either) that they lost all the desired impact and actually worked counter to what was intended. In particular I remember hearing of crews of a number of boats/ships listening to broadcasts that recounted the fact that the ship they were currently on had been sunk. The allied tendency to tell the truth (although usually not all of it) worked better especially in the long run.
     
  14. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana WW2|ORG Editor

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    The Office of War Information (OWI) certainly never told lies.

    Their job to was industriously fib in the name of the war effort.
     
  15. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    And it certainly was effective. It was quite the science. Still is.
     
  16. harolds

    harolds Member

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    If you want to believe, you will. J. Goebbels's big messages were for the German people. Many wanted to believe the lies because they were comforting. They preferred "alternate facts".
     
  17. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana WW2|ORG Editor

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    They certainly believed they were going to get the cars they were paying for in advance.
     
  18. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    I see what you did there
     
  19. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    The whole of chapter VI of 'Mein Kampf' is devoted to the subject ( and importance ) of propaganda. Hitler constantly refers to hisa dmiration of the enemy ( ie British ) use of propaganda in WW1 ( see p. 176 ' For what we failed to do, the enemy did, with amazing skill and really brilliant calculation. I, myself, learned enormously from this enemy war propaganda...' )
     
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  20. Javey74

    Javey74 Member

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    Thank you for all your comments, it certainly does give a pause for thought. Personally to lie and deceive isn't a great crime under propaganda, when you consider that there was lots of propaganda towards the end of the war stating that Germany was fighting on against the Russains, the determination was still there, only that the truth was that they were losing the war with mass casualties. Peoples Sons being killed for a lost war which had been known for quite a while, this to me is where propaganda is inhumanely and morally wrong to be used. Even more so using children towards the latter end with tank busters, as if they would turn the tide of an already lost war.

    At the same time I'm also aware that they had no choice, even general everyday families had to fight, they could not surrender or flee as if they were caught they would be shot. It's a no win situation on both fronts.
     

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