Chilling footage of a girls’ ‘summer camp’ that took place during 1939 reveals how teenagers were indoctrinated into Hitler’s anti-Semitic ideology.
The blonde haired, blue-eyed youngsters, aged between 14-18, were all part of Hitler’s League of German Girls who have been specially selected, based on ‘genetic quality’ by the Nazi Party.
Unsettling black-and-white footage, obtained from the National Archives of Germany, was taken at the Country Service camp in Munich and shows the fresh-faced girls eagerly raising the swastika flag and obediently performing the Nazi salute.
The video, entitled ‘Madel im Landjahr’ is translated as ‘Girls in Country Service Gamp’, and features the League of German Girls or Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM), the girls wing of the Hitler Youth.
The footage shows the young women performing chores around the camp including cooking, cleaning and agricultural activities which consisted of planting of crops and the general maintenance of the farms.
The video also shows girls taking part in gymnastics. Sport was a big part of the life at BDM camps as it was intended to create healthy, strong girls who were fit for child-bearing and would go on to produce multiple children to increase the population.
The unsettling footage shows young fresh-faced girls during line-up at the BDM’s summer camps. The video, entitled ‘Madel im Landjahr’ is translated as ‘Girls in Country Service Gamp’
The BDM began in 1930 but it wasn’t until Baldur Von Schirach was appointed head of the Hitler Youth in 1931 that the group began to rise in popularity with membership estimated between 10,000 to 15,000 girls at the end of 1932.
The league focused on developing girls into women who were dedicated to Nazism and whose role within society was to become ‘mothers of the Third Reich’. The girls were to grow-up with an unquestioning understanding of the regime and their intended role.
Hitler hoped that the work on these camps would encourage young girls to leave the city and work on the land in the service of the Nazi’s ‘Blood and Soil’ values – which instructed the German people to pursue an honest rural life over urban ‘Jewish’ professions.
The teenagers, aged 14-18, can be seen performing various chores around the camps including agricultural duties, cooking and gardening. Here, at lunchtime
At the camps, girls were trained in Nazi ideology and encouraged anti-semitism. The teens were taught to avoid ‘racial defilement’, by following a Nazi policy prohibiting sexual relations between Aryans and non-Aryans and encouraged the girls to inform the authorities if their parents or neighbours were not acting in line with the regime.
In lessons, the girls were presented with propaganda videos and stories focused on painting Jewish people as inherently unsavoury characters.
In one of the more chilling moments, girls can be seen performing Nazi salutes. The league focused on developing girls into women who were dedicated to Nazism and whose role within society was to become ‘mothers of the Third Reich’
Members of the group wore matching uniforms of white dresses and work clothes to ensure conformity across the movement. Modifications were deemed unacceptable as Nazi girls were intended to be natural beauties that did not rely on cosmetics.
Alongside the male members of the Hitler Youth, the girl branch would have attended many Nazi Party political meetings and rallies, including the Nuremberg rallies.
The members of the group wore matching uniforms of white dresses and work clothes to ensure conformity across the movement. Modifications were deemed unacceptable. Here, the Nazi girls obediently raising the swastika flag
Hitler hoped that the work on these camps would encourage young girls to leave the city and work on the land in the service of the Nazi’s ‘Blood and Soil’ values
Membership was extremely strict and only allowed girls who met the strict requirements of the Fascist regime. In order to join, girls had to be a German citizen of racial and ethnic German heritage. Here, performing chores at the camp
What was the Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM)?
The BDM began in 1930, prior to Adolf Hitler’s rise to power as Chancellor, in 1933.
Its roots lie with the unsuccessful establishment of other girl groups set up during the early years of the National Socialist movement which focused on teaching language, folklore and history with anti-Semitic interpretations.
Recruitment drives ran in an attempt to get more female members but the groups weren’t especially successful.
It was only in 1932, with the Fascist regime’s increased popularity that Nazi Youth leader Baldur Von Schirach dissolved other Nazi girl’s groups and transferred all memberships to the BDM.
The movement increased momentum and by the end of 1932, membership was estimated between 10,000 to 15,000 girls.
Membership was extremely strict and only allowed girls who met the strict requirements of the Fascist regime. In order to join, girls had to be a German citizen of racial and ethnic German heritage, free of hereditary diseases and with family members in keeping with the Third Reich’s belief system.
During the Second World War, the BDM carried out various roles within society including camps for girls evacuated from cities for their protection during bombing raids, training the teenagers as volunteer nurses on the front line and even serving in the signal corps of the women’s section of the SS.
In the last days of the war, some of these members were among the most fanatical supporters of the Nazi Regime and not knowing life beyond the Third Reich, joined last-ditch defenses in Berlin and other cities in fighting the invading Allied armies along with male members of the Hitler Youth.
After the Second World War, Baldur Von Schirach, who had also held multiple roles within the Nazi Party, was convicted of crimes against humanity.