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The Olympic stadium in Berlin

View of the Olympic Stadium, centerpiece of Berlin's Reich Sports Field. Berlin, Germany, 1936.

The Nazis made elaborate preparations for the August 1–16 Summer Olympic Games. A huge sports complex was constructed, including the new stadium and state-of-the art Olympic village for housing the athletes. Olympic flags and swastikas bedecked the monuments and houses of a festive, crowded Berlin.

Most tourists were unaware that the Nazi regime had temporarily removed anti-Jewish signs, nor would they have known of a police roundup of Roma (Gypsies) in Berlin, ordered by the German Ministry of the Interior. Nazi Germany used the 1936 Olympic Games for propaganda purposes. The Nazis promoted an image of a new, strong, and united Germany while masking the regime’s targeting of Jews and Roma as well as Germany’s growing militarism.


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  • US Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Gerhard Vogel
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View of the Olympic Stadium, centerpiece of Berlin's Reich Sports Field. [LCID: 02571]

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