Adolf Hitler Gives the Jews a City


Very rare piece of footage: Der Führer schenkt den Juden eine Stadt – The Führer Gives the Jews a City

Kurt Gerron, a Jewish actor/director, made a short film about the Theresienstadt camp. The footage that Gerron shot was intended to be edited into a film called either Theresienstadt. Ein Dokumentarfilm aus dem jüdischen Siedlungsgebiet (Terezin: A Documentary Film of the Jewish Resettlement) or Der Führer schenkt den Juden eine Stadt (The Führer Gives the Jews a City) but the progress of the war in that period (late 1944 to early 1945) made that impossible, so the scenes were used independently. Only about 20 minutes of the film survives.

Nazi propaganda – EVIL… They attempted to show how the Jews were taken care of and make it look good for public consumption. One monstrous lie after another. They had prisoners take off their rags and put on nice clothes. You see laughter and playing – all fake. All for the camera. All to convince the world that the Nazis were being kind to the Jews and taking care of them instead of torturing and killing them. The director was sent to his death at a death camp as soon as this film was done. As soon as the film ended, everything went back to the way it was and the torture and death resumed.

This is the only film known to be made by the Nazis inside an operating concentration camp. Germany’s Ministry of Propaganda produced this 1944 film about Theresienstadt, the “model” ghetto established by the Nazis in 1941 in Terezin, a town in the former Czechoslovakia. Joseph Goebbels intended to use the film to prove to the International Red Cross and the world that Jews were being well-treated in the camps. The film, however, is an elaborately staged hoax presenting a completely false picture of camp life. Upon completion, the director and most of the cast of prisoners were shipped to Auschwitz. Only a few survived to attest to the falsity of the film. Includes study guide. Written by National Center for Jewish Film

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