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Between the years of 1939 and 1945 the world experienced the most devastating war in human history A minor conflict between Germany and an Anglo-French coalition erupted into the greatest struggle modern society has ever endured Throughout this period Germany produced one of the most formidable displays of political propaganda ever The propaganda campaigns began in Germany and later influenced other countries involved in the war Ultimately Nazi war propaganda became so widespread and successful that it had a profound effect even on the United States an ocean away Nazi Germany used the tool of propaganda during World War II on a broad and calculated basis It was as much a part of the Nazi war machine as tanks and guns On March 11th 1933 the German government established the Reich Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda Well-known German politician Dr Joseph Goebbels headed the ministry Although Hitlers ideas for the ministry were different from those of Goebbels both men had the same intention Film was often the primary vehicle Hitler wanted to exploit and advertise German films as political propaganda in such a way that every filmgoer will know today I am going to see a political film Goebbels idea was to mask propaganda within mainstream films By the end of the war out of approximately 1150 feature films almost 20 percent were purely political propaganda films Both men sought to exalt Hitler to such a degree that he would be viewed as a demigod Goebbels work began in March 1933 when he met with his representatives for the first time Goebbels discussed his aspirations for the Ministry He used three films as examples to model his films from Anna Karenina The Rebel and The Nibelungen These films illustrated the correct way to disguise propaganda in film There was no intent to disguise his ultimate goals however Just weeks before he had banned a movie The Testament of Dr Mabuse because it publicized
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