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Why German "wunderwaffen" are often overhyped in documentaries?

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marauder2048

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I also got the impression that for some of these projects, the design firms were motivated in part by a
desire to keep their skilled workforce from being conscripted or diverted to more bombable war industry.
 

galgot

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I also got the impression that for some of these projects, the design firms were motivated in part by a
desire to keep their skilled workforce from being conscripted or diverted to more bombable war industry.
Indeed . There is a thread about that here somewere.
And given the nazi staff delusion/dreams, i think the industry understood with what kind of dream weapons they could "feed" them with.
Now its more commercial.
The public nowadays likes to dream about wunderwaffen for various reasons, press/documentaries "feeds" the public with it. As long as there is market for it, we will see this kind of crap.
 
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edwest

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The overhipe of wunderwaffen doesn't date only from the end of the war by the allies.
It was already part of wartime nazi propaganda, the all "V-weapons are going to save us", the glorification of their Tiger tank compare to the untermenshen T-34s (when you think they were in fact waisting ressources building tanks like peace time Mercedes. T-34 WAS the thing to build in wartime). Yes some German weapons were advanced for their time, but for most part , allies could do the same. It's just that the allies directed their ressources to researchs and manufacturing that made them win the war.
The real wunderwaffen were the effective weapons easy to produce in great numbers, P-51s, Sten smg, Sherman, Yak fighters, T-34, you name it... And the atom bomb . These were correctly directed ressources.

Feel like the after war Wunderwaffen overhipe thing is also a continuation of the nazi staff vision and delusion/incompetence of superior aryan tech advance that could wipe the inferior hordes.
And it sells because:
- It pleases a certain public that have this same kind of delusion/dreams of superiority (so yes, sorry, it's also political).
- It's sensational. For a large part of the public liking to scare itself with spooky "nazis could have win the war" .
- It attracts curiosity. German wartime stuff attract curiosity, specially if there is a swastika on it. For example it's a fact that an aviation mag with a image of a Luftwaffe plane on the cover will sell more then one with some other plane. Tho it doesn't mean that all poeple attracted by it are nazis, it just works. Sad but true.
Wunderwaffen stuff is the porn of historical research.

This is unfounded speculation:

Feeling superior over very old technology?

I can understand the scare yourself idea better, but how many times is anyone going to watch a rehash of a rehash of the same thing?

In Europe, I know publishers make it a point to avoid showing a swastika. I view period ebay images all the time and I'm not interested in the swastikas, just the plane and its markings. Keep in mind, most Luftwaffe records were destroyed and there are researchers who have been attempting to put the pieces together with photos, log books and surviving documents. The British and Americans have few mysteries.

German weapons technology was history and hundreds of experts, some put in uniform for the purpose, produced hundreds of reports. A significant portion of British T-Force files are still classified. A report by the US Army Security Agency from the year 1946 was not declassified until 2009, and is held by the NSA. No, there are real researchers out there waiting for the next round of declassifications while they scour any other source they can find, including auction houses in the US and Germany. Veterans die. Their families are left with photos and documents and many part with them. The publication Luftwaffe im Focus continues to unearth interesting, and in some cases, unusual material. Who knows about it?
 
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edwest

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I also got the impression that for some of these projects, the design firms were motivated in part by a
desire to keep their skilled workforce from being conscripted or diverted to more bombable war industry.

No historical basis for that thought. I have read the first-hand accounts of various firms working until the last minute before the Russians or Americans, usually T-Force or the American equivalent, arrived. And how they had to move from place to place after one facility was bombed and then another. After D-Day, technical intelligence had target lists that included locations and photos of individuals that were sought (called the Black Book in one case). During their searching, they would discover other targets they were unaware of, and referred to as 'targets of opportunity.' Reports ranged from 16 pages to hundreds of pages. Others remain classified.
 

galgot

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This is unfounded speculation:

Feeling superior over very old technology?

I can understand the scare yourself idea better, but how many times is anyone going to watch a rehash of a rehash of the same thing?
Sorry, what is unfounded speculation?
That the nazis felt their technology was superior to the others cause they were "aryans" ?
That there are still peoples thinking like that nowadays ?
Cause in both case it’s not a speculation, its a sad fact.

In Europe, I know publishers make it a point to avoid showing a swastika. I view period ebay images all the time and I'm not interested in the swastikas, just the plane and its markings. Keep in mind, most Luftwaffe records were destroyed and there are researchers who have been attempting to put the pieces together with photos, log books and surviving documents. The British and Americans have few mysteries.

German weapons technology was history and hundreds of experts, some put in uniform for the purpose, produced hundreds of reports. A significant portion of British T-Force files are still classified. A report by the US Army Security Agency from the year 1946 was not declassified until 2009, and is held by the NSA. No, there are real researchers out there waiting for the next round of declassifications while they scour any other source they can find, including auction houses in the US and Germany. Veterans die. Their families are left with photos and documents and many part with them. The publication Luftwaffe im Focus continues to unearth interesting, and in some cases, unusual material. Who knows about it?
When I say "swastika", I mean anything German WWII stuff to attract curiosity. No need to show the swastika, and in certains countrie, including mine , it can cause you trouble.
But of course, if you put a image of a Stuka somewhere even if the rudder is not shown, well, it’s a nazi period plane.
Don’t understand your point about Luftwaffe records being destroyed and the rest…
We are talking about wunderwaffen overhype here.
 
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marauder2048

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I also got the impression that for some of these projects, the design firms were motivated in part by a
desire to keep their skilled workforce from being conscripted or diverted to more bombable war industry.

No historical basis for that thought. I have read the first-hand accounts of various firms working until the last minute before the Russians or Americans, usually T-Force or the American equivalent, arrived. And how they had to move from place to place after one facility was bombed and then another.
Why does that undermine the premise? Until the final collapse of German food distribution, working in these projects guaranteed
better access to necessities and better security than what would be allocated to just about any other civilian position.

Could the workforce even risk stopping? "Sabotaging the war effort" was exactly taken lightly even at the very end of the war.
And of course, if you know the Allies are interested in your efforts, the more you have to show the better your chances of
special treatment.
 
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Maiwand1880

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The hype over Wundewaffen is just an hidden way of celebrating national-socialism and the IIIrd Reich, and of portraying IIIrd Reich Germany as a victim. There are some excellent books (excellent on a technical ground), for instance on the "V1" programme, where the pretense that Allied strategic bombing campaign over Germany amounted to a crime against humanity is subtly insinuated (hence equating this Allied campaign with the Holocaust) and that III Reich Germany had to "retaliate" using Wunderwaffen. The fact that many of those Wunderwaffen were to be manufactured by deportees in concentration camps is deliberatly overlooked by Wunderwaffen-fans.
 

Orionblamblam

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- It attracts curiosity. German wartime stuff attract curiosity, specially if there is a swastika on it. For example it's a fact that an aviation mag with a image of a Luftwaffe plane on the cover will sell more then one with some other plane. Tho it doesn't mean that all poeple attracted by it are nazis, it just works. Sad but true.

It's not Nazi-specific. Who is more interesting... Darth Vader or Obi Wan Kennobi? Who do you want to cosplay as... a Stormtrooper or a rebel soldier? Who would you rather watch at Disneyland... the Evil Queen or Snow White? Who do you want to play in the movie... the scenery-chewing Bad Guy, or the lantern-jawed dullsville Hero? Look even at Luke Skywalkver vs Han Solo: who do you want to be (or be with, depending)? Almost certainly Han. Because while even though both are Good Guys, Han is the Bad Boy, with that hint of murderous pirate about him. Face it: evil is *interesting.*

The Nazis get a leg up in the Interestingness department because unlike less interesting total evils such as the commies, the Nazis went that extra step and devoted a lot of time and expertise to coming up with mind-grabbing iconography and Hugo Boss-level fashions. The Nazis are *classy* evil. They are monocle-wearing, moustache-twirling, high-society scamming Professor Moriarty level villains, while the Soviets, who were substantially *more* evil than the Nazis, are potato-sack wearing back-alley thugs.
 

galgot

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- It attracts curiosity. German wartime stuff attract curiosity, specially if there is a swastika on it. For example it's a fact that an aviation mag with a image of a Luftwaffe plane on the cover will sell more then one with some other plane. Tho it doesn't mean that all poeple attracted by it are nazis, it just works. Sad but true.

It's not Nazi-specific. Who is more interesting... Darth Vader or Obi Wan Kennobi? Who do you want to cosplay as... a Stormtrooper or a rebel soldier? Who would you rather watch at Disneyland... the Evil Queen or Snow White? Who do you want to play in the movie... the scenery-chewing Bad Guy, or the lantern-jawed dullsville Hero? Look even at Luke Skywalkver vs Han Solo: who do you want to be (or be with, depending)? Almost certainly Han. Because while even though both are Good Guys, Han is the Bad Boy, with that hint of murderous pirate about him. Face it: evil is *interesting.*

The Nazis get a leg up in the Interestingness department because unlike less interesting total evils such as the commies, the Nazis went that extra step and devoted a lot of time and expertise to coming up with mind-grabbing iconography and Hugo Boss-level fashions. The Nazis are *classy* evil. They are monocle-wearing, moustache-twirling, high-society scamming Professor Moriarty level villains, while the Soviets, who were substantially *more* evil than the Nazis, are potato-sack wearing back-alley thugs.
Hehe. Think it was Hitchcock how said a good film is where the villain is so good that every one wants to be him. "When the devil wants to present itself, he always dress well".
Only, we are dealing with reality too. For me nazis are not movies villains. Maybe due to the fact that I'm European, and we don't have the same collective recollection of the war than from the US. Thinking of gas chambers, killing squads, i don't see them as very classy... more disgusting even in ugo boss uniforms. Oh, and Dirlewanger squads were potato-sack wearing thugs too.
 
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edwest

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The people who make such TV shows know this but make them anyway.
 

Orionblamblam

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Only, we are dealing with reality too. For me nazis are not movies villains.
The Nazis are *everything.* They are movie villains. They are historical villains. They are cartoons. They belong to the ages now.

A few hundred years ago, some people thought of Napoleon as the Antichrist. Today, I don't know that too many people really think of him as Evil Incarnate any more...or any of the other murderous despots that history cranks out with regualrity. Napoleon is now often enough a punchline. Not that long ago, Americans more or less all agreed that the Founding Fathers were great Heroes. Now a *lot* of Americans want to erase them from the history books because they were "terrible" men. Time changes how the past is viewed.
 
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galgot

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Only, we are dealing with reality too. For me nazis are not movies villains.
The Nazis are *everything.* They are movie villains. They are historical villains. They are cartoons. They belong to the ages now.

A few hundred years ago, some people thought of Napoleon as the Antichrist. Today, I don't know that too many people really think of him as Evil Incarnate any more...or any of the other murderous despots that history cranks out with regualrity. Napoleon is now often enough a punchline. Nt that long ago, americans more or elss all agreed that the Founding Fathers were great Heroes. Now a *lot* of Americans want to erase them from this history books because they were terrible men. Time changes how the past is viewed.
Well well... I would say It's a good way to relativize morality... Sure time changes the vision of the past.
But still, we are not few hundred years from nazism , and these ideas are still here, named differently. And will ever be here. That doesn't mean I have to reassure myself thinking the same crap existed 200 or 300 years ago.
Yes maybe in 200 years, peoples will think of hitler only as the guy who brought autobahns to Germany and who had an effective police dressed in ugo boss... alas.
 
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Orionblamblam

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But still, we are not few hundred years from nazism , and these ideas are still here, named differently. And will ever be here.
Nazism is pretty well dead. The only places I've seen "Nazis" in any numbers is, oddly enough, Eastern Europe & Russia, a fact that boggles my tiny little mind. Nazism is very specifically a fascist ideology rooted in a Germanic mindset, and it really doesn't work elsewhere.

Yes maybe in 200 years, peoples will think of hitler only as the guy who brought autobahns to Germany and who had an effective police dressed in ugo boss... alas.
Shrug. If it drains Hitler & the Nazis of any cultural power to basically forget them... fine. Heck, if that's what it takes to get these hack "documentarians" to stop giving air time to charlatans and crackpots, I'm all for relegating the history of Hitler to the dollar store bargain bin. Nobody remembers who preceded Charlemagne, or who the leader of the Sea People was.
 

edwest

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These hack documentarians apparently don't care and will continue to produce such work.
 

galgot

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Nazism is pretty well dead. The only places I've seen "Nazis" in any numbers is, oddly enough, Eastern Europe & Russia, a fact that boggles my tiny little mind. Nazism is very specifically a fascist ideology rooted in a Germanic mindset, and it really doesn't work elsewhere.
...
Ok, i slept.

And in Illinois :p
Well "nazi" is a German word alright, but national-socialism is not only German, and racism/stupidity is very much alive nowadays.
We do see morons entering churshes, mosques, synagogs... Supermarkets or concerts and opening fire on the crowd nowadays. It's the same murderous stupidity , well dressed or not.

As for the "cooleness" of nazis villains, really it all depend to who you talk to.
For example, try saying "yeah, they were bad guys, but they had nice uniforms" to a jew , maybe he will take it as a joke, but of bad taste, or he must have a very solid jew sens of humour.
I really feel there is difference in the way it's perceived in the US (and in England to a lesser extend) than from continental Europe. Just for the fact that US/England were never rulled/occupied by nazis.
 
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Orionblamblam

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Well "nazi" is a German word alright, but national-socialism is not only German,
You can see national socialism in China today, but it's not "Nazi." The Nazis were a very specific strain.

We do see morons entering churshes, mosques, synagogs... Supermarkets or concerts and opening fire on the crowd nowadays.
We've seen that forever, since long before there were any actual Nazis.

I really feel there is difference in the way it's perceived in the US (and in England to a lesser extend) than from continental Europe. Just for the fact that US/England were never rulled/occupied by nazis.
No doubt distance provides a sense of objectivity. But on the other hand, there are a lot of Americans today who were never ruled by Nazis, weren't even born by the time the youngest of the Nazis started dropping like flies of old age, never even *seen* a Nazi except on The History Channel, who are nevertheless wholly freaked out about the hordes of Nazis they are convinced are hiding behind every street sign. Commies? Don't care. But Nazis? BOOGA-BOOGA they're everywhere! Regardless of the *why,* there's something about the Nazis that seems to make them immortal. The people who seemingly hate them the most refuse to let them die.
 
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galgot

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You can see national socialism in China today, but it's not "Nazi." The Nazis were a very specific strain.
Right… Do you like PLA uniforms ? :p

We've seen that forever, since long before there were any actual Nazis.
Yes. Sorry, i have difficulty getting use to it…
But that is what I meant, it’s the same stupidity.

No doubt distance provides a sense of objectivity...
Hehehe… I can see where you’re going Sir… and living were it happened and having a family history connected to it gives you a good sens of his reality and makes one (or a whole population) less prone to take the question lightly. I do hope you don't mean continental Euros lack objectivity about it...

But on the other hand, there are a lot of Americans today who were never ruled by Nazis, weren't even born by the time the youngest of the Nazis started dropping like flies of old age, never even *seen* a Nazi except on The History Channel, who are nevertheless wholly freaked out about the hordes of Nazis they are convinced are hiding behind every street sign. Commies? Don't care. But Nazis? BOOGA-BOOGA they're everywhere! Regardless of the *why,* there's something about the Nazis that seems to make them immortal. The people who seemingly hate them the most refuse to let them die.
Ok...
 
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marauder2048

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I might also suggest wartime and post-wartime exaggeration of German wunderwaffen was useful in
helping to justify the Allied campaign to compel unconditional surrender.

The unconditional surrender demand was controversial even at the time and is still debated.
 

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I can see where you’re going Sir… and living were it happened and having a family history connected to it gives you a good sens of his reality and makes one (or a whole population) less prone to take the question lightly.
You'd think. And yet... where do you go if you want to see substantial numbers of people seriously emulating the Nazis? Russia, Ukraine, Poland.

You might think the modern Nazis would be in the US (since the Constitution allows for people to be Nazis or Commies or Furries or whatever); certainly you'd think that if you listened to certain news outlets and talking heads. And yet when someone tries to get a gathering of such people together in the US, you get *maybe* a few dozen *at* *most,* and they are either laughed out of the park or actually chased out with guns by armed Socialists, as happened in Charlottesville.
Oh noes, those poor, completely docile, puppy like, absolutely innocent, perfectly peaceful, cutely adorable, lotus eating, almost unmanly, "Jews will not replace us" screaming, tiki torch wielding (somehow that old Frankenstein movie comes to mind...), precious snowflake neonazi people were "chased out" by them thar despicable, dastardly, *armed* (and shouldn't we then perhaps be doing *something* about that whatever numbered amendment?!) socialists! And yet, utterly (un)surprisingly, the *only* victim who *actually* died that day was killed by one 20-year-old James Alex Fields Jr., who had driven all the way from Ohio (can't say those right wingers aren't fer sure determined!) to attend the rally, had previously espoused neo-Nazi and white supremacist beliefs, and was convicted in a State Court of hit and run for the first-degree murder of 32-year-old Heather Heyer and eight counts of malicious wounding, and sentenced to life in prison with an additional 419 years by July 2019. He also plead guilty to 29 of 30 federal hate crime charges to avoid the death penalty (what a hero and upstanding guy!), which also resulted in another life sentence conviction ordered in June 2019. Hi Scott, (never mind if I address you directly even though not too long ago in this here very forum you told me you in so many words you were going to ignore me going forth) I still vividly remember that at some point on your blog you tried to peddle the utterly despicable conspiracy theory that he was "chased" to drive into the crowd of protesters, but obviously a United States Court of Law took a *very* different view. How do you reconcile those *facts* with your make believe world view?
 
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martinbayer

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Galgot, you're absolutely right, even in the USA there already are some limits on *absolute* free speech, as outlined for example in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shouting_fire_in_a_crowded_theater. So the question comes down to where to draw the line. I have my own views, but I have absolutely no doubts whatsoever that they differ wildly from at least a few members of this esteemed forum.
 
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kaiserd

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From experience in here I would suggest an approach of not feeding extremist troll(s) but of reporting to the administrators (as I have now done in this case).
I do appreciate that a lot of the counter-posters hearts (and minds) are in the right place and the natural reaction is to challenge such hateful skewed falsehoods and opinions.
However on this non-political forum it ends up being counter productive as it inadvertently gives such trolls a platform and an importance they don’t remotely merit.
Report and give the administrators a chance to deal with extremist trolls (hopefully for good re: the most extreme and repeat offenders).
 

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This has drifted far into politics. Locked for cleanup.
 
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