Julius Streicher and "The Stuermer"
Author: Michael Kloft
Even high-ranking Nazi officials such as Joseph Goebbels and Hermann Goering felt mostly contempt for their fellow party member. Nevertheless, this man was one of the most influential figures in the Third Reich: Julius Streicher, who in his capacity as publisher of the antisemitic weekly "The Stuermer" was responsible for the worst demagoguery and was notorious for his corrupt and violent regime as head of the Nazi administrative district in Franconia. The Allies regarded him as a symbol of national-socialist anti-Semitism. In 1946, he was sentenced to death and executed in Nuremberg.
Spiegel TV author Michael Kloft took up the trail of Julius Streicher and examined the true meaning of "The Stuermer", the Jew-baiting weekly. This trip into the darkest depths of anti-Semitism produced a surprising result: "The Stuermer" had more readers than people were led to believe after the war. Up to 750,000 issues were printed weekly, and even six-to-nine-year-old schoolchildren were systematically trained to hate Jews. For the historian Saul Friedlaender, this is an important factor in trying to find an answer to the question why so many young Germans later took part in killing Jews.
With partly unpublished footage, photographs and documents, as well as interviews - with, among others, one of Streicher`s former aides and famed American newsman Walter Cronkite - this documentation retraces one of the darkest chapters in German history.
year of production: 2001