Was Hitler's ideology completely wrong

German myth: Adolf Hitler and the Autobahn

In January 1933, the Nazis came to power in Germany under Adolf Hitler. In September of the same year they start working on the "Reichsautobahn". The National Socialists use the project as a propaganda tool and promise the "mobility the National community". A few years earlier they had refused to build so-called “car-only roads”. They claimed that these “are only enough Aristocrats and Jewish Big capitalists and serve their interests ”- until they discovered the project for propaganda.

To this day, many believe that Adolf Hitler invented the autobahn. However, already built Konrad Adenauer in 1932 today's A 555 between Cologne and Bonn. In order to be the first to complete a motorway, the National Socialists declared it in 1933 without further ado to a Country road.

The Nazis are taking advantage of the biggest problem of the time - mass unemployment - for themselves: They claim that Construction project 600,000 jobs create becomes. In fact, it will only be 120,000. The construction of the autobahn is full of sickness, death and starvation embossed. Many workers go on strike and are punished in one concentration camp plugged. Of course, the public will not find out about this.

Hitler plans to build 1,000 kilometers a year. However, this only succeeded in the years 1936 to 1938. During the war, between 1941 and 1942, work was almost completely stopped. Ultimately, it is not the construction of the “Reichsautobahn” that reduces unemployment, but that armorare industry.


Myth that - here: a story that is wrong

Reichsautobahn, the - the motorway in the so-called "Third Reich"

Propaganda that - Actions taken to manipulate people's thoughts and behavior

National Socialist, the - a member of the "National Socialist German Workers' Party" in the so-called "Third Reich" under Adolf Hitler (short form: Nazi, the)

Mobility that - the mobility; the ability to move or move forward

Volksgemeinschaft, the - ideological term that is mostly used in a racist way

Aristocrat who - Member of the aristocratic class

Big capitalist who - someone who has a lot of property, a lot of capital (especially in the national socialist and also communist ideology)

Konrad Adenauer - first German Chancellor from 1949 to 1963; 1917 to 1933 mayor of Cologne

without further ado - without thinking too much; without hesitation

Country road that - a road outside of towns or cities, but which is not a motorway

Construction project, that - the project to build something

create - here: create anew

to be shaped by something - be strongly influenced by something

Concentration camp, that - a camp in which the National Socialists imprisoned and murdered many people

armor, the - here: the production of weapons

Questions about the text

1. Why did the National Socialists start building the “Reichsautobahn”?
a) You need the autobahn for the defense industry.
b) They find a means of propaganda in the motorway construction project.
c) You come to power and put your long-planned project into action.

2. What role does unemployment play in the Nazi autobahn construction?
a) The National Socialists claim to want to reduce mass unemployment through the construction.
b) Unemployment prevents the construction work from being successfully completed
c) Because of mass unemployment, many people have to be particularly mobile - a motorway will be necessary.

3. During the war, because of the growing arms industry ...
a) ... reduce mass unemployment.
b) ... built a "Reichsautobahn".
c)… 1000 kilometers of motorway built every year.

4. Choose the right preposition: "The National Socialists are using the construction of the Autobahn ... Propaganda project.“
a) as
b) to
c) for

5. Choose the right preposition: "The National Socialists manage to solve the problem of unemployment ... to use.“
a) with
b) on
c) for

Work order
Make a small table with the Nazi claims on one side and the facts on the other. Do you know a similar myth from your own country?

Authors: Wolfgang Dick / Florian Görner
Editor: Ingo Pickel