The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby MagicbyAlfred » June 15th, 2021, 9:25 am

Whatever else can or cannot be said about Kalanag, he appears to have had shrewd acumen for P.R. So, even assuming that he'd been given that medal, would he really be walking around flaunting it post WW II?

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 15th, 2021, 10:55 am

Zig Zagger wrote:I'm not sure, Richard.

It is mentioned in the "Magie" in 1944 (special issue "Arbeitstagung in Bad Aussee", p. 6) that the War Merit Cross 2nd Class with Swords was awarded to Schreiber by the Fuehrer at his headquarter (late in 1943 or early in 1944) after Schreiber's trip with Albert Speer to the polar region for the entertainment of troops.

However, as I've read, these merits and awards came in bulk. They were awarded to millions of soldiers, but also to many civilians for behind the front or home front activities.


I stand corrected, thanks, Jan, and apologies to Dr.Solka for my having implied he might have confused the two Helmut Schreibers! Apparently the medal was not that uncommon. This website about it, though it does not include the magician Helmut Schreiber among those who received it, estimates that it was awarded 6,134,950 times during WW2, so not surprising that not all those who received it are listed there:
https://www.tracesofwar.com/awards/582/Kriegsverdienstkreuz-2Klasse-mit-Schwertern.htm

And Dr. Herwig's book does mention this award having been given him by Hitler in the section about Schreiber's visit to entertain German troops in the company of Albert Speer. The MAGIE reference says these were Christmas performances 1943, so the award was either late 1943 or early 1944.

You can find several photos of Schreiber entertaining troops with Speer in the front row on this website by searching on "Kalanag":
https://www.bpk-bildagentur.de/

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Jonathan Townsend » June 16th, 2021, 8:52 am

Richard Hatch wrote:The United Magicians for the World schedule has been posted online (subject to change without notice) and the good news is that many of the presentations will be replayed 12 hours after the livestream including my conversation with Dr. Herwig on the topic of "Was Kalanag a Nazi and does it matter?" at 10 a.m. EST and repeated at 10 p.m. Thursday the 17th.
For the complete schedule, click on the "Discover the Program" link downscreen here:
https://mastersofmagicconvention.com/umw/

If you think the June GENII has already answered the first question, I encourage you to tune in. Also, if you have any questions you want addressed on this topic, feel free to post them here for consideration.

That looks like a fine event. What is the recommended/suitable support payment for the event?

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Dr. Solka » June 16th, 2021, 10:26 am

Dear Mr. Hatch, thank you very much for the valuable link to the frightening pictures “Staff members as spectators of the magician Kalanag in front of the Kohnstein.”
https://www.bpk-bildagentur.de/

Unfortunately, Kohnstein was not an ordinary armament factory but a concentration camp from the summer of 1943, in which about twenty thousend prisoners died as a result of inhumane forced labor. It became infamous as the Mittelbau-Dora Nordhausen concentration camp
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mittelbau ... ation_camp
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/KZ_Mittelbau-Dora

In the summer of 1944, there was already an above-ground concentration camp. Three thousand civilian employees worked and SUPERVISED the prisoners in the Kohnstein. The SS guarded everything.

Even my usual sarcasm can not express what I feel when I see these pictures!

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 16th, 2021, 11:40 am

Yeah, those photos of Schreiber/Kalanag performing at the slave labor camp Kohnstein (where the V2 rockets were assembled) are pretty sobering. In a footnote about it in his book, Dr. Herwig notes that he was unable to confirm another author (Rolf Aurich)'s contention that the audience did not include slave laborers. I'm not really sure how to take that. Either way, it's hard to argue that Schreiber "didn't know" what was going on...

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 16th, 2021, 11:42 am

Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Richard Hatch wrote:The United Magicians for the World schedule has been posted online (subject to change without notice) and the good news is that many of the presentations will be replayed 12 hours after the livestream including my conversation with Dr. Herwig on the topic of "Was Kalanag a Nazi and does it matter?" at 10 a.m. EST and repeated at 10 p.m. Thursday the 17th.
For the complete schedule, click on the "Discover the Program" link downscreen here:
https://mastersofmagicconvention.com/umw/

If you think the June GENII has already answered the first question, I encourage you to tune in. Also, if you have any questions you want addressed on this topic, feel free to post them here for consideration.

That looks like a fine event. What is the recommended/suitable support payment for the event?


Well, the events are all free to stream. I guess you could decide how much to donate after viewing them, based on their perceived value to you. That's what I did last time and will do again this time. It supports a worthy cause, so giving more than their value to you is OK, too!

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Dr. Solka » June 16th, 2021, 3:19 pm

I guess that in the photo of Hitler with Kalanag, Kalanag wears the N.S.D.A.P.-Ehrenzeichen (NSDAP Badge of Honor) on his reverse.

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 16th, 2021, 5:39 pm

Dr. Solka wrote:I guess that in the photo of Hitler with Kalanag, Kalanag wears the N.S.D.A.P.-Ehrenzeichen (NSDAP Badge of Honor) on his reverse.

You have better eyes than I do, Dr. Solka! That would be most interesting if it could be verified. I assume you mean the photo of Hitler and Schreiber with Hitler's dog Blondi and Schreiber's wife Anneliese (later Gloria de Vos) taken at his Obersalzberg retreat in 1943? Schreiber is wearing some kind of badge on the lapel of his sport coat, but I can't identify it. It doesn't look to me like any of the NSDAP Ehrenzeichens from 1943 shown on this page:
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_der_Ehrenzeichen_der_NSDAP
Can you identify it more exactly? Perhaps it is the one shown here:
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wehrwirtschaftsf%C3%BChrer
Dr. Herwig does discuss photos in which Schreiber made such "evidence" disappear or passed it off as his Magische Zirkel badge (they also had a golden "Ehrenzeichen" which was awarded to Schreiber's boss SS-Brigadeführer Hans Hinkel, a rabid Nazi and antisemite. But I haven't yet found a photo of the MZ version to compare. Anyone have such a badge from that period?)

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 16th, 2021, 6:39 pm

At the best resolution and highest magnification of that photo that I can find, it might be this "NSDAP Supporters" pin (there are several variants, but all that I have found have the same basic design):
https://hannasmilitaria.com/nsdap-supporters-pin/

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 17th, 2021, 2:41 am

Richard Hatch wrote:At the best resolution and highest magnification of that photo that I can find, it might be this "NSDAP Supporters" pin (there are several variants, but all that I have found have the same basic design):
https://hannasmilitaria.com/nsdap-supporters-pin/

Actually, with the high resolution of the photos in the June Genii issue, and using a magnifying glass (my iPhone camera!), it is clear to me that in the 1944 photo of Schreiber at his Bavaria Film desk (with the signed portrait of Hitler on the wall behind him), he is definitely displaying the NSDAP Supporter pin on his lapel (not sure what the round pin is, possibly a Magische Zirkel badge...) and he does seem to be wearing the same pin in his lapel in the 1943 photo with Hitler at the Obersalzberg retreat on page 38. Harder to see in the photo on page 39 from that same occasion, but the clothing is the same, so it must be the same pin when he is sitting next to Eva Braun. Thanks for bringing these to my attention, Dr. Solka, and for reproducing the high resolution photos in the June Genii, Richard!

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Dr. Solka » June 17th, 2021, 4:45 am

Richard Hatch wrote:
Dr. Solka wrote:I guess that in the photo of Hitler with Kalanag, Kalanag wears the N.S.D.A.P.-Ehrenzeichen (NSDAP Badge of Honor) on his reverse.

You have better eyes than I do, Dr. Solka!
I am sure you would not like to change with my eyes!

That would be most interesting if it could be verified. I assume you mean the photo of Hitler and Schreiber with Hitler's dog Blondi and Schreiber's wife Anneliese (later Gloria de Vos) taken at his Obersalzberg retreat in 1943?
That is correct!

Schreiber is wearing some kind of badge on the lapel of his sport coat, but I can't identify it. It doesn't look to me like any of the NSDAP Ehrenzeichens from 1943 shown on this page:
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_der_Ehrenzeichen_der_NSDAP
I agree.

Can you identify it more exactly? Perhaps it is the one shown here:
https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wehrwirtschaftsf%C3%BChrer
Wehrwirtschaftsführer does not apply. Wehrwirtschaftsführer are influential industrialists.

Dr. Herwig does discuss photos in which Schreiber made such "evidence" disappear or passed it off as his Magische Zirkel badge (they also had a golden "Ehrenzeichen" which was awarded to Schreiber's boss SS-Brigadeführer Hans Hinkel, a rabid Nazi and antisemite. But I haven't yet found a photo of the MZ version to compare. Anyone have such a badge from that period?)
That Schreiber wore an MZvD circle badge is IMHO BS.
Last edited by Dr. Solka on June 17th, 2021, 4:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Dr. Solka » June 17th, 2021, 4:45 am

Richard Hatch wrote:At the best resolution and highest magnification of that photo that I can find, it might be this "NSDAP Supporters" pin (there are several variants, but all that I have found have the same basic design):
https://hannasmilitaria.com/nsdap-supporters-pin/
The translation "Supporter Pin "for "Ehrennadel" seems to be odd for Germans. "Supporter Pin" I would translate with "Sympathieabzeichen". A "Sympathieabzeichen" was constructed as a swastika.

The correct term for this badge is “NSDAP Hoheitsabzeichen / Amtswalter Abzeichen"
https://jp-militaria.de/epages/c8160b69 ... ucts/14332

"Amtswalter" - was a designation for office bearers of the NSDAP. They had to take an oath to Adolf Hitler.

IMHO Kalanag wore the "NSDAP Hoheitsabzeichen" as "Amtsträger (Official)" - he was the president of the magic circle and therefore an official of the "Reichsfachschaft Artistik". Thus by his memory, this must be an MZvD (magic circle of Germany) badge. :evil:

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 17th, 2021, 11:52 pm

The hardcover edition of Dr. Herwig's book is now available in America (still in German, though). Previously, only the kindle version was available. I think magic collectors will want it, even if they don't read German.
https://www.amazon.com/gro%C3%9Fe-Kalanag-Zauberer-Vergangenheit-verschwinden/dp/332860054X/

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Zig Zagger » June 20th, 2021, 3:13 am

MagicbyAlfred wrote:Whatever else can or cannot be said about Kalanag, he appears to have had shrewd acumen for P.R.

Absolutely, Alfred. He certainly had learned the craft of advertising and P.R. from Dante and other masters before him. I'd also guess that he knew from his work in the movie industry how vital glamour, headlines and rumors were for box office success.

MagicbyAlfred wrote:So, even assuming that he'd been given that medal, would he really be walking around flaunting it post WW II?

Definitely not. I'm not a historian, but what I've learned at school and in private talks is that the haunting Nazi years from 1933 - 1945 were mostly hushed up, played down or relativised for the next 20 to 30 years after the Second World War, both in private and in public/in the media. No one in possession of their minds would have boasted about their former Nazi activities or "accomplishments".
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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Zig Zagger » June 20th, 2021, 4:27 am

Richard Hatch wrote:The United Magicians for the World schedule has been posted online (subject to change without notice) and the good news is that many of the presentations will be replayed 12 hours after the livestream including my conversation with Dr. Herwig on the topic of "Was Kalanag a Nazi and does it matter?" at 10 a.m. EST and repeated at 10 p.m. Thursday the 17th.
For the complete schedule, click on the "Discover the Program" link downscreen here:
https://mastersofmagicconvention.com/umw/

If you think the June GENII has already answered the first question, I encourage you to tune in. Also, if you have any questions you want addressed on this topic, feel free to post them here for consideration.

On a related note, Richard will be speaking today on Jewish magician, author and Nazi victim Günther Dammann. Figure out your local time for the live stream at the link above.
Tricks, tips, news, interviews, musings and fun stuff: Have a look at our English-German magic blog! http://www.zzzauber.com
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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Jonathan Townsend » June 21st, 2021, 10:16 am

Hi Richard, what time is your discussion repeated? I looked in at 8am and 9am EST - ???
Thanks,
JonT
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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Richard Hatch » June 21st, 2021, 2:25 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Hi Richard, what time is your discussion repeated? I looked in at 8am and 9am EST - ???
Thanks,
JonT

Jonathan, alas, the repeat was at 3 a.m. this morning EST. The schedule times were the times in Rome (CEST). I don't believe any other replays are planned or YouTube postings. I have been asked to repeat it for some groups and if those are public events I'll let you know.

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Dr. Solka » June 23rd, 2021, 3:51 pm

It is rumored the Magic Circle of Germany has determined that Kalanag may have been a Nazi after all. At least, it is said, the board of the circle decided to stop awarding the Kalanag ring.

I am grateful to Mr. Kaufman that The June Issue of Genii features the NAZI Kalanag on the Cover. It could no longer be minimized that Kalanag was a Nazi and not only an opportunist.

There is a photo showing Kalanag at his desk in Herwig's book. Kalanag is wearing an NSDAP badge for party members (Parteiabzeichen) and an NSDAP badge for office bearers (NSDAP Hoheitszeichen) on the lapel.

But maybe I'm confusing things, and they were just Magic Circle of Germany member badges after all. (Attention! Sarcasm!)

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby MagicbyAlfred » June 24th, 2021, 1:57 pm

Dr. Solka wrote: There is a photo showing Kalanag at his desk in Herwig's book. Kalanag is wearing an NSDAP badge for party members (Parteiabzeichen) and an NSDAP badge for office bearers (NSDAP Hoheitszeichen) on the lapel.

But maybe I'm confusing things, and they were just Magic Circle of Germany member badges after all. (Attention! Sarcasm!)


In effect, they were Magic Circle of Germany Badges, in that, given the Reichskulturkammer, the probability is high that wearing an NSDAP party-member badge was mandatory for Magic Circle members.

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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby Zig Zagger » June 24th, 2021, 4:53 pm

I don't think so, Alfred, but Kalanag might have liked this sort of retro-fitting post-war excuse... ;)
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Re: The June Issue of Genii Features the Nazi Kalanag on the Cover

Postby MagicbyAlfred » June 24th, 2021, 5:44 pm

Zig Zagger wrote:I don't think so, Alfred, but Kalanag might have liked this sort of retro-fitting post-war excuse... ;)


I will defer to you on that one, Zig Zagger.


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