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Propaganda By Radio In The Third Reich

2507 words - 11 pages

On the brink of the war, Germany needed hit the ground running or risk being defeated by the opponent. After Hitler became Head Chancellor of Nazi Germany, Joseph Goebbels was promoted to Reich Minister of Propaganda. Goebbels was greatly respected by his Germans and government officials after his service in the German military. It was observed as, “He (Goebbels) came as a fighter who had proved himself against the French, separatists and Communists in three years in the Rhine and Ruhr areas. He came without support; he had to build his own support.” Goebbels was viewed as a brilliant war hero who had all the answers to make Germany the most powerful country in the world. His popularity and image made him a suitable candidate to run the Ministry of Propaganda. In addition, Goebbels’ actions perfectly reflected the attitudes preached by Nazi Germany. The Third Reich was gaining momentum and it was all due to the active spread of Nazi propaganda. Nazi Germany was willing to go to any length to not only unite the German people to support the war, but also to use propaganda against the enemy directly. Newspapers, posters, rallies, and education of youth were a few ways Goebbels and the German Ministry of Propaganda spread their thoughts; however, nothing was as effective and important to the propagandist movement as radio. Radio was a revolutionary propaganda tool, to say the least, because it turned out to be the fastest, easiest, and most manipulative form of communication to shape the attitudes of the German people. The Third Reich did not intend to simply spread their propagandist thoughts to manipulate the German people. The bigger goal was to use radio as a psychological and strategic weapon of war, exponentially increasing the influence and power of the German leaders. Radio was by far the most effective medium for imposing the Nazi mindset on the German people due to the easy accessibility to audiences, the nation’s control over radio broadcasting networks, and the fact that people could hear their leader’s voice.
With a country the size of Germany, it would have been virtually impossible to update the population on the war and spread propaganda efficiently without the radio. Before World War I, communicating the government’s message to the public, at the level that radio was able to provide, was unfathomable. National support and unity were on the rise as radio was driving an absolute persuasion of Nazi ideals. Use of radio was key to penetrating the core consciousness of the German people and molding their morals to the liking of the Nazi government. “[Radio] reached the entire nation, regardless of class, standing, or religion. That was primarily the result of the tight centralization, the strong reporting, and the up-to-date nature of the German radio…” Obstacles that at first didn’t allow all of Germany’s citizens to listen to Nazi leaders on the radio were removed. Goebbels was a political chess player who made highly strategic...

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