Hitler Youth: Special Programs


Figure 1.--I believe these boys are at one of the NAZI Party schools. I'm not sure, however, if they are at a NAPOLA or one of the Adolf Hitler Schools. These were boarding schools. The girl is probvably a female relative visiting them.

There were many special programs associated with the Hitler Youth. The basis activities of marching, camping, games, and other activities is described above. In addition there were special programs including labor service, assisting the Getstapo, and heloping with various aspects of the war effort. The HJ was also involved in special party schools.

Hitler Youth Special Services

The Land Service (Landdienst) was created in 1934 by Artur Axmann, who headed the National Youth Directorate. This “back to the land” ideal was originally created back in 1924 by the right-wing Artamanen movement, but was incorporated into the Nazi party structure as the leaders of that movement willingly joined the Nazi party. Within the service, the youth were encouraged to give back to the land by working the farms, plant trees and flowers, and to help the rural people cultivate the land for the future of all Germany. It was believed that the Jews populated only urban areas, and so the rural folk were racially pure and needed the help to Hitler Youth (who would then indoctrinate the children of those rural areas). The land service credo was “Blut und Boden” (Blood and Soil). The Land Service was very popular amongst the HJ. From spring until harvest time, the HJ would work the farms before dispersing in the winter back to the cities. Some would remain behind and venture out as theatrical entertainment to the rural peoples, while most left for leadership schools or agrarian institutes. The appeal of the Land Service was that it was cut-off from the main Nazi machine, propaganda and drills. The members of the Land Service were ultimately destined to settle in the country, found farming families and work the land for the Reich.

After the war broke out, the Land Service was part of the detention process as well, incorporating many convicted (former) Hitler Youth in armed camps. Hard labor was seen as fit punishment for the lesser criminals, in the hopes that these youth could be rehabilitated and return to active HJ service. Land Service details were for first time offenders only.

The Speaker’s Corps

One of the most important services of the Third Reich’s propaganda machine was the Speakers Corps. Hitler himself had proved the power that oration could hold over the masses, for that was how he came into power. Von Schirach was also a keen speech writer and emulated Hitler’s approach to public speaking to recruit new members into the youth movement, which lead to the creation of the Speaker’s Service. The service was to train boys and young men in the art of public speaking in order to captivate the youth and people of the entire nation, as well as to invigorate and inspire the members of the Hitler Youth. Boys and young men who showed promise were designated for this elite unit, which was an extension of the Reich Youth Office and the propaganda department of the Reich. Only those who excelled were given licenses by state to speak for the Nazi party. The Hitler Youth speakers were divided into three main groups: Reich groups, regional groups, and unit speakers. At the lowest ranks was the speaker circle, where fresh talent might be gleaned. Within the speaker circle and Speaker School, special attention to ideological training was implemented, and the students were expected to absorb every detail of Nazi literature, mythos, newspapers, magazines and books published on National Socialism. Within the schools and smaller circles, the boys learned from trained orators and Reich officials on the proper intonation, wording and gestures needed to enthrall the masses. Special attention was also given to an individual’s appearance, uniform and played upon each individual’s unique voice to captivate an audience.

By 1937, there were over 550 members of The Speaker’s Corps, spreading the message of National Socialism and the “mythos” of Hitler himself. The Speaker’s Corps were the evangelists of the Nazi party, and was as integral as the foot soldiers in ensuring that all youth were led into the Third Reich.

The Patrol Service

The Hitlerjugend-Streifendienst (Patrol Service), was the HJ counterpart of the Gestapo. An internal police service who worked in the shadows to enforce the strict laws of the Third Reich. They ruled by fear, terror, and violence. They sought out any dissident, or suspected traitor to the cause. Like the Gestapo, they were everywhere and were the eyes and ears of top party members. Any suspected disloyalty or even anti-Nazi (or Hitler) jokes were said to have been reported. Patrol Service members were capable of denouncing their own family and parents on occasion, as was the case of Walter Hess. His father ended up at a concentration camp in Dachau, where he died, after HJ member Walter reported that the man had described Hitler as a “crazed maniac.” Hess received a promotion.

The Patrol Service had vast powers and were feared by all, especially the underground resistance fighters. For Patrol Service agents would infiltrate these subversive groups and expose them, leading to many mass arrests and murders. These boys were involved in “The Night of the Long Knives,” the eradication of Ernst Rohm and over 1000 brownshirts of the SA, as well as the death of the Catholic Youth leader, Adalbert Probst, and other non-HJ youth leaders. One of the main objectives of the Patrol Service was the weeding out and extermination of homosexuals within the Hitler Youth and Jungvolk. It began with “The Night of Long Knives,” and continued on into the war years. Up to 1941, more than one third of the boys that had been expelled from the HJ were expelled for suspected homosexual deviance."Somevboys were castrated, imprisoned, or executed. Any Hitler Youth members who wandered off on their own (which was common, especially among the units positioned in rural/mountainous areas and the youth lead themselves without adult party supervision), or whose activities were morally suspect could be convicted. The Nazi’s understood that some units would produce rogues: those not toting the party line, singing non-national socialistic songs, or idle wandering that weakened the units. The Patrol Service made themselves known in the countryside (unlike in the urban centers where they remained undercover); a Patrol Service unit consisted of around 70 boys with a special designation embroidered upon the lower part of their left sleeve: a blue-black stripe with HJ-Streifendienst in yellow. The service investigated any and all reports of irregularity, not only in the HJ and Jungvolk, but within the two associations for girls as well. The Patrol Service units were also trained in police procedures, including the use of pistols.

The Patrol Services other agenda was destroying the underground resistance fighters and the many splinter groups that arose.

NAZI Party Schools

The NAZI Party established secondary schools for carefully children. The were primarily for boys, but a few were also for girls. The schools were to train the Party elite. The major program was the Nationalpolitische Erziehungsanstalt (NPEA or NAPOLA). The other kind of secondary schools created by the NAZIs were called the Adolf Hitler Schulen (AHS--Adolf Hitler Schools). The AHS were founded because the SS essentially seized control of the NAPOLA. Reichsorganisationsleiter Dr. Robert Ley (DAF leader) and Baldur von Schirach (Hitler Youth leader) agreed to set up the new schools in January 1937. The schools as far as we know were very similar. The primary difference was simply who controlled them. The other kind of secondary schools created by the NAZIs were called the Adolf Hitler Schulen (AHS--Adolf Hitler Schools). The AHS were founded because the SS essentially seized control of the NAPOLA. Reichsorganisationsleiter Dr. Robert Ley (DAF leader of the DAF) and Baldur von Schirach (Hitler Youth leader) agreed to set up the new schools in January 1937.

Sources

Brenda Ralph Lewis, Hitler Youth: The Hitlerjugend in War and Peace, 1933-1945 (MBI Books, November 2000).







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Created: November 15, 1998
Last updated: 4:12 PM 6/28/2007