This is about Adolph Hitler trying to “erase” Christ from Christmas story, changing Holy Night into “Wild Night” and replacing the decorations with the swastika.
When Nazis took over in 1933, one of their first propagandas was Christmas. They were even against Santa Claus!
In December of 1941, Adolph Hitler organized a rich Christmas party for the top executives of the Nazi party. Politicians and generals gathered in front of a huge Christmas tree to celebrate and exchange gifts, in the presence of hundreds of representatives of the SS, with their typical high boots.
In the pictures that were saved by Führer’s personal photographer, Hitler looks a bit joyless for participating in such a celebration. Just think about how inappropriate would be for him, the head of a genocide and a belligerent dictatorship, to celebrate the birth of a Jew!
However, despite his expression, Hitler appears as a conqueror, not only of continental Europe but also of Christmas – it took him only six years to turn such a big celebration into a powerful propaganda tool.
During World War Two, Germany’s population was mainly Christian, so, as it happens nowadays, Christmas was a really popular celebration there.
In addition, the Christmas tree has its roots in the Rhineland, in the 16th century. As a matter of fact, the Nazis found it difficult to get rid of Christmas, since it was a really important celebration for Germans. However, it represented everything that Hitler used to hate: Christian ethics of peace on Earth. So, since Führer couldn’t get rid of Christmas, he would try to possess it!
A propagandist document of 1937, titled as “New Concepts for Traditions that we Inherited”, describes the mental aerobic exercises that the Nazis had to do in order to turn Christmas into a celebration they could support.
Christmas is traditionally viewed as “holidays, to achieve world peace” – an interpretation that should be rejected, according to the article. Wouldn’t it be a paradox if the Nazis celebrated for world peace, while, in the meantime, they were killing millions of people? That’s why the document’s author noted that Germans should wish for peace in Germany every Christmas. “Peace that could be achieved only if we could get rid of Germany’s enemies such as Jews, Gypsies, communists and homosexuals.
“Saviour Führer’s” Wild Night
This is not the end of the propaganda. Hitler tried every way he could to “erase” Christ from Christmas. In Germany, Christmas is called Weihnachten (Holy Night), a really convenient fact for Hitler. However, the Nazis invented the name Rauhnacht (Wild Night), so that there is also a hint of violence.
Fortunately for Hitler, Germans had the winter solstice, which was celebrated long before Christianity’s arrival in the country, so it was easy for the Nazis to argue that «Weihnachten» was one pagan celebration.
The inspirers of the Holocaust, Heinrich Himmler and Alfred Rosenberg, changed even the lyrics to Christmas songs, where Jesus was referred, such as “Silent Night”, and turned them into hymns to National Socialism. Any reference to Jesus was replaced by the “Saviour Führer!”
Christ was “removed”, but things got more difficult with Santa Clause, the Greek Christian bishop Nicholas of the 4th century in Asia Minor, who was really not an Aryan!
Even the Nazis couldn’t fight him, but still, they changed his name. They claimed that the figure with the beard, which distributes Christmas gifts to the houses, was pagan God Odin. Christians had stolen him, but now his name was restored.
Hitler, however, should even change the decoration of the Christmas tree. The star on the top of the tree used to annoy the Nazis because it either reminded them of David’s star (six peaks) or of the communist star (five peaks). So they replaced it with a swastika, a thunderbolt of the SS or a German wheel.
The Christmas tree’s decoration changed also since it started including grenade and automatic weapons’ copies. Christmas balls with slogans such as “Sieg Heil” have been found as well as red lamps covered by swastikas and copies of iron crosses and eagles. There were also some Hitler’s miniatures, which he prohibited by law.
In 1939, Christmas had almost become a propaganda tool of the Nazis, according to an article: “When we celebrate Christmas, everyone, who has German blood and accepts “Germanethnicity” as a celebration is included in the family”.
In 1937, propagandist Friedrich Rehm wrote: “We cannot appreciate that the German Christmas tree has to do with a crib in Bethlehem. We cannot even think that Christmas is the product of an Eastern religion”.
However, this didn’t last too long. During the allied advance in 1944, the influence of Christianity on Christmas was the least of the Nazi’s problems, who consecrated the day as a memorial for the war’s fallen soldiers.
It was the last year that “Nazi Christmas” was celebrated. After four months, Hitler was dead and so was every Nazi idea- they were ostracised to history’s time closet!
Maybe this could explain the sad expression on Hitler’s face during the Christmas meal of 1941. He could have probably seen the future “Christmas ghost”.
Source: Mixani Tou Xronou (Time Machine)