Saturday, 14 July 2018

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Symphony No. 41 in C major, K. 551, “Jupiter”


Conductor: Herbert von Karajan
Performance: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra

I. Allegro vivace [00:00]
II. Andante cantabile [11:19]
III. Menuetto. Allegretto [19:05]
IV. Molto allegro [24:14]


Thursday, 12 July 2018

Die Deutsche Wochenschau – Newsreel No. 658 – 14 April 1943


- Spring Combat on the Eastern Front;
- Hitler's Meeting With Mussolini;
- U-Boats in the Caribbean;
- Katyn Forest Massacre.

Monday, 9 July 2018

Adolf Hitler – speech at the Great Exhibition of German Art - 10.07.1938



Munich, July 10, 1938

Scarcely six years have passed since the National Socialist Movement, following many years of struggle, was finally entrusted with the leadership of the Reich. Nonetheless, today we can already state that rarely in the history of our Volk has there been a comparably eventful period of peace as in these past five and a half years, an epoch of National Socialist leadership which was inaugurated on that memorable January 30, 1933. How many realms of our lives have witnessed radical change since then, a resurgence of life which had been declared completely impossible just a few years earlier by those who had felt themselves “called upon.” The Party which had been decried as a threat to the inner peace in fact bestowed true inner peace upon the German Volk in the first place.

A regime that supposedly would precipitate economic collapse pulled the German Volk back from the brink of economic ruin and saved it. That very National Socialism, which was assumed to spell a disastrous defeat in matters of foreign policy, has uplifted the German Volk from the most dreadful defeat in its entire historical existence, has restored its proud self-confidence and has led Germany to become a highly-respected force in the world. There is hardly one realm in which the prophecies of our opponents were not revealed as lies.

During these months, we have borne witness to the fact that the economic philosophy of National Socialism, which ten years ago had been decried as pure stupidity and only five years ago was termed a criminal act or madness at least, that this philosophy is now gradually being adopted by other states as well- albeit in omission of copyright charges. [-] The cultural program of this new Reich is of an unparalleled grandeur in the history of our Volk. Success will come about as a matter of consequence as it already has in all other realms of our lives. However, we are fully aware that in this instance the initial time period by nature will be a longer one than the ones to date.

In the twentieth century, the German Volk is a Volk of a resurrected affirmation of life, enchanted in its admiration of the strong and beautiful and hence of what is healthy and capable of sustaining life. Power and beauty are the slogans of our time. Clarity and logic reign supreme in our efforts. Whoever wants to be an artist in this century must wholeheartedly pledge himself to this century.

There is no room for any Neanderthal culture in the twentieth century, no room for it at least in National Socialist Germany. We rejoice that the democracies are opening their progressive doors to these degenerated elements for, after all, we are not vindictive. Let them live, we do not mind! For all we care, let them work-but not in Germany! In 1937, 1 felt the time to have come for a clear decision in this matter as well. Naturally, this entailed a severe intervention. Whether or not we can today call geniuses of eternal standing our own is as always difficult to judge, but in the end it is of little consequence for our actions. What is of great consequence, however, is the preservation of an environment in which true genius can be nurtured. To this end, it is imperative to uphold the solid and decent underpinnings of the common artistic heritage of a people out of which develops true genius. Genius is not synonymous with insanity, and above all genius is not synonymous with fraud. To the contrary, genius manifests itself through extraordinary accomplishments which are easily differentiated from the common.

This prejudice threatened to pervade the entire nineteenth century [in the time of decline]. The decent, or let me say well-intentioned naive average of that century, has nonetheless furnished that ground from which arose many a great artist. A century that can claim so many great musicians, great poets and thinkers, renowned architects, wonderful sculptors and painters, towers way above the stupid profanities of an epoch of noise-makers in the Dadaist tradition, formers of plaster in the Cubist mode and colorers of futurist screens.

Of course, the nineteenth century also brought forth many an average performance and even more performances ranking below average. However, that is the mark of any century of achievement. How many people wander through life and how few of them are able to run a marathon, and how many actually win the race? Yet these victors are but the fastest runners of humankind. However, if these men would hop around crazily instead of walking like ordinary men, then their performance would equal that of our cultural geniuses of the time of disintegration. They would be no better than these because they, too, would lack the basis for the creation and assessment of supreme achievements.

Hence in the course of the past year, I resolved to clear a passage for the honest and decent average performance. Already at the exhibition prior to the last, we warranted the joyful premonition that one or the other artist was well capable of even greater achievement in the future. Developments since then have proven this assessment correct. Our suspicions were, moreover, reinforced by the winter exhibition on German architecture and the products of our arts and crafts.

These days I greatly rejoice in having been able to afford the German Volk this magnificent work of eternal beauty to be placed in the capital of its arts thanks to the truly magnanimous permission granted by the Italian Government. May none of you who visit this house fail to go to the sculpture gallery. May you all then realize how glorious man already was back then in his corporeal beauty, and that we can speak of progress only if we have attained like perfection or if we manage to surpass this level.

Above all, may the artists appreciate how great the sight and the artistic ability of this Greek named Myron must have been as it reveals itself to our eyes today. How marvelous an achievement of that Greek who created a statue two and a half millenniums ago, a statue the Roman copy of which still elicits stunned admiration on our part. And may all of you take this to heart as a standard for the tasks and accomplishments of our time. May you all strive for beauty and perfection so that you shall also stand the test of time both before the Volk and the ages. [-] I have no doubt that you will be moved by the same sensations that moved me when I first saw this unparalleled testimony to eternal beauty and achievement.

You will perhaps then, too, be able to sense what I feel on this day as I declare open this second art exhibition in the Reich and as I compare it to what existed just a few years before we came.

Friday, 6 July 2018

Waffen-SS Brigadeführer - a Profile


Published in „Siegrunen“ Magazine - Vol. 7, No. 6, Number 42,
January - March 1987

There were 52 Waffen-SS Brigadeführer, the oldest of whom was Friedrich Tscharmann (an SS HQ staff officer), who was born in 1871 in Saxony, while the youngest was Wilhelm Mohnke (commander of the 1st SS Division „LAH“ in late 1944, early 1945), who was born in Lübeck in 1911. Twenty-three of the Brigfhr. were born in the decade from 1890 to 1900, while another 20 were born in the years from 1901 to 1911. Thirty, including two born in Alsace-Lorraine, were of Prussian descent, while six came from Bavaria, four from Saxony, three from old Austro-Hungary, three from Hamburg, two each from Hesse and Baden, and one from Wuerttemburg along with one Dane.

Eighteen of the 52 Brigfhr. retained their religious affiliations, of whom 13 were Evangelical Lutherans. One of the Brigfhr. came from the upper class (Gustav Lombard, whose father was a nobleman), while another 12 were derived from the upper middle class, and 19 others had middle class backgrounds. Thirteen Brigfhr. had lower middle class origins, while the remaining SS Major Generals came from farming, laboring or lower class families. Among the latter were Theodor Wisch (1st SS), Kurt Mayer (12th SS), and Sylvester Stadler (9th SS). The upper middle class Brigfhr. included Peter Hansen (29th SS), Gottfried Klingemann (2nd SS Bde.), Gustav Krukenberg (33rd and 11th SS), Heinz Lammerding (2nd and 38th SS), Ritter von Oberkamp (7th SS), Juergen Wagner (23rd SS) and Joachim Ziegler (11th SS).

Twelve of the SS-Brigfhr. had higher academic learning, while another 21 had some degree of higher education. Thirteen others had graduated from cadet or trade schools. Only five of the Brigfhr. were considered poorly educated. Four of the SS Major Generals (von Dufais, Kryssing, Vahl, and Ziegler) had been career Army officers all of their adult lives. Five others (Freitag, Kraemer, Neblich, Schmedes and Voss), were career Army officers who went into the German Police when the Reichswehr was curtailed in size by the notorious Treaty of Versailles. Gustav Krukenberg started off as a career Army officer and became a government functionary.

Eleven SS-Brigfhr. were career Army officers up to the 1918-20 era, when Army cutbacks began. They subsequently followed business or agricultural pursuits, mostly with good success. Seven of the Brigfhr. became medical doctors, while another eight of them were salesmen. Two (Augsberger and Lammerding), were architects; one (Otto Kumm), was a typesetter, and one (Sylvester Stadler), was an electrician. Another Brigfhr. (Lombard), had worked for an American automobile firm, both in the U.S. and abroad, while another (Gaertner), was a low-level government bureaucrat. Five of the SS-Brigfhr. had begun their careers as NCOs: Helmuth Becker, Wilhelm Keilhaus, Kurt Meyer (Police), August Schmidhuber and August Zehender. One Brigfhr., Joachim Rumohr, was a farmer before becoming an SS officer.

Rumohr also held the lowest SS number in the group, this being Nr. 1 280, while the highest SS number went to Joachim Ziegler at Nr. 491 403. Fifteen of the SS- Brigfhr. had SS numbers below 100 000; ten were in the 100-200 000 range and 26 were above 200 000. The numbers, of course, indicated seniority or lack of it in the SS organization. Brigfhr. Kryssing, a Danish citizen, had no SS number. The lowest N. S. Party number belonged to Gaertner at 35 359, with the highest going to von Dufais, who held 5,276,395. Twenty SS-Brigfhr. had party numbers in excess of 1 000 000, while eight (Hampel, Harmel, Kryssing, Stadler, Tscharmann, Vahl, Zehender and Ziegler), were not party members at all.

Five SS-Brigfhr., Heinz Harmel (10th SS), Otto Kumm (7th and 1st SS), Kurt Meyer (12th SS), Sylvester Stadler (9th SS), and Theodor Wisch (1st SS), were decorated with the Knight's Cross, Swords and Oakleaves during the war. Another five, Joachim Rumohr (8th SS), Juergen Wagner (23rd SS), Fritz Witt (12th SS), August Zehender (22nd SS), and Joachim Ziegler (11th SS), received the KC with Oakleaves. Eight others were decorated only with the KC (no mean feat in itself!): Franz Ausberger (20th SS), Helmuth Becker (3rd SS), Fritz Freitag (14th SS), Desiderius Hampel (13th SS), Frtiz Kraemer (l.SS Pz.Corps), Heinz Lammerding (2nd SS), Gustav Lombard (31st SS) and Herbert Ernst Vahl (4th SS).

Four of the Brigfhr. took their own lives: Freitag, Neblich, Schwedler and Rumohr; the latter only after having been badly wounded during the Budapest Breakout attempt, and even then he was not fully successful, since he did not die until a day later. Five Brigfhr. were killed- in-action: Augsberger, Ernst Fick (in the Battle of Berlin), Witt, Zehender and Ziegler. Two more were executed/ murdered in enemy captivity: Becker in the Soviet Union and Bernhard Voss (commander of the SS Troop Training Grounds at Beneschau near Prague), in Czechoslovakia. Three others, all exceptionally fine soldiers and human beings, were sent to Tito's executioners by the Americans and British. They were then tortured and murdered, all without the slightest „legal“ justification. They were: Juergen Wagner („Nederland“ Div.), Ritter von Oberkamp (7th SS „Prinz Eugen“ Div.) and August Schmidhuber (7th SS Div. and 21st Albanian SS Div. „Skanderbeg“). Their blood remains a permanent stain on the hands of the so-called „Allies“!

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Wir Machen Musik (1942)

(We Make Music)


Directed by: Helmut Käutner
Written by: Manfried Rössner (play)
Hans Effenberger
Erich Ebermayer
Helmut Käutner
Cinematography: Jan Roth
Edited by: Helmuth Schönnenbeck
Production company: Terra Film
Distributed by: Deutsche Filmvertriebs
Release dates:  8 October 1942
Running time:  95 minutes
Country: Germany
Language: German

Starring:

Ilse Werner: Anni Pichler
Viktor de Kowa: Paul Zimmermann
Edith Oß: Trude, trumpeter
Grethe Weiser: Monika Bratzberger
Georg Thomalla: Franz Sperling
Rolf Weih: Peter Schäfer
Ilse Buhl: Alto-saxophonist
Sabine Naundorff: Tenor saxophonist
Hilde Adolphi: Trombonist
Gertrud Leonhardt: Guitarist
Eva Gotthardt: Bassist
Kurt Seifert: Hugo Bratzberger
Victor Janson: Director Pröschke
Lotte Werkmeister: Karls Zimmerfrau Frau Zierbarth
Helmuth Helsig: Chimney-sweep
Ewald Wenck: Gasmann Knebel
Wilhelm Bendow: Theater stage director
Klaus Pohl: Stage doorman at the opera
Sonja Kuska: Music student Barbara
Otto Braml: Chairman of the Board of Examiners
Curt Cappi: Waiter Neumann
Friedrich Wilhelm Dann: Train conductor
Hanne Fey: Secretary of the music publisher
Robert Forsch: Music publishing director
Karl Hannemann: Director of the opera stage
Sonja Kuske: Barbara, music student
Karin Luesebrink: Music student
Artur Malkowsky: Opera singer at the premiere
Maria von Höslin: Peters Braut
Helga Warnecke: Music student

Plot

It is a revue film, loosely based on the stage work Karl III. and Anna von Österreich by Manfried Rössner. Karl Zimmermann, a composer whose idols are Johann Sebastian Bach and classical composers, dreams of being successful with his own opera and composes popular music for fun, but does not try to distribute it for reasons of honor. His wife, Anni Pichler is a popular singer and secretly sells his popular songs so that they can make a living. When he finally completes his opera and it is rejected by the public, he realizes that his true talent is composing popular music and not dishonorable.