Regimes sometimes for political reasons desguise their trur progrms and policies. Often they are much more honest and stightt forward in their school textbooks. Especially in school textbooks, the basic ethos of the regime is often clearly spelled out in simple, but easy to understand terms. The NAZI Party sought to create a religious cult with the various pledges and prayers that they developed for children. Songs and pledges were developed to reinforce the idea of commitment to and sacrifice, even death for the German nation and its Fuhrer--Adolf Hitler. School children were expected to say certain prayers to Hitler before meals (National Archives 3). Songs were written to the tune of church hymns with words praising Hitler and the German nation. Some were used in schools. Others were used in the Hitler Youth.
"Fuehrer, my Fuehrer given me by God, Protect and preserve my life for long. You rescued Germany from its deepest
need. I thank you for my daily bread. Stay for a long time with me, leave me not. Fuehrer, my Fuehrer, my faith, my
light. Hail my Fuehrer. " --School meal prayer written by Baldur von Schirach (National Archives 3-4).
"I believe in the German mother who gave me birth. I believe in the German peasant who breaks the sod for his people.
I believe in the German worker who performs work for his people. I believe in the dead who gave their lives for their
people. For my god is my people. I believe in Germany!"--A Confession of Faith for German youth (Blackburn, p. 76).
"We are the joyous Hitler Youth. We need no Christian virtue, for our leader is Adolf Hitler. He is our deliverer and
intercessor. No Cleric, no evil doer can hinder us, for we consider ourselves Hitler-Children. Not Christ we follow, but
Horst Wessel."--A song for Hitler Youth (Blackburn, p. 85).
"Our flag flutters before us. In the future we'll pull man for man. We march for Hitler through night and through
suffering, with our banner of freedom and bread. Our flag flutters before us. Our flag represents the new era. And the
flag carries us into eternity! Our banner means more to us than death."--Words from the Hitler Youth Anthem (Koch, p. 81).
Kodi and Crystal contributed their reserch for this page
Blackburn, Gilmer W. Education in the Third Reich: Race and History in Nazi Textbooks. State University of New
York Press: Albany 1985.
Koch, H. W. The Hitler Youth: Origins and Development 1922-1945. Stein and Day: New York, 1975.
(The) National Archives Learning Curve. "Education". 19 April 2002.
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