In the Western world of 2013, where diversity is allowed, making personal decisions encouraged, Nazi control of life would be inconceivable. How could adults give their children into bondage? Where joining a party-oriented group- males into one, females into their own- determines the schools attended and the community service they perform? It was a pipeline into military service and/or defense industry labor.
Forget the brutal concentration camps- they were an ultimate threat for undesirables. This society needed compliant citizens willing to do as they were told; hence training youngsters to fight in small-unit actions. First over obstacle courses, then practicing grenade throwing, marching with packs, or practicing as cavalry detachments (popular in rural regions).
Advantages: this early training taught self-confidence, identified future leadership, instilled the racial beliefs of the party, and cultivated national pride. -no wonder Allied G.I.s encountered rag-tag soldiers too young to shave who insisted that 'Germany would never give up'.
The Navy, Army and of course Luftwaffe sponsored units intended to supply fit youngsters conversant with military courtesy. The author combed archives for all the pictures; they carry captions identifying purpose, not location or names.
Disadvantages: Back in class, whether in a vocational school or university track, the Hitler Youth exhibited independence while parroting the party line.
' ...Pictures of prominent Weimar politicians which adorned the walls of classrooms, like that of the late President Ebert, were subjected to ceremonial burnings in the school playgrounds.
After the co-ordination of the German provinces later in 1933, Rust, aided by the militant NS Teachers League, carried out a systematic purge of the entire teaching profession. Teachers at secondary school or university level who belonged to one of the democratic parties Left-of-Centre were removed, mainly into a premature retirement, a measure which also affected all Jewish teachers, irrespective of previous party affiliations. They were replaced by men and women who were often better National Socialists than teachers. ' (pp 167-8)
Sadly, the Nazi takeover of all life in Germany was easy. This book shows how they did it.