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View Full Version : The National Socialist War on Cancer



Aeternitas
Thursday, December 23rd, 2004, 12:37 PM
Excerpts from Robet N. Proctor's "The Nazi War on Cancer":


"Historians and epidemiologists have only recently begun to explore the NS anti-tobacco movement. Germany had the world's strongest anti smoking movement in the 1930s and early 1940s, encompassing bans on smoking in public spaces, bans on advertising, restrictions on tobacco rations for women, and the world's most refined tobacco epidemiology, linking tobacco use with the already evident epidemic of lung cancer.[...]

[...]Hitler was the most adamant, characterising tobacco as "the wrath of the Red Man against the White Man for having been given hard liquor." At one point the Fuehrer even suggested that NS might never have triumphed in Germany had he not given up smoking.

[...]German anti-tobacco policies accelerated towards the end of the 1930s, and by the early war years tobacco use had begun to decline. The Luftwaffe banned smoking in 1938 and the post office did likewise. Smoking was barred in many workplaces, government offices, hospitals, and rest homes. The NSDAP announced a ban on smoking in its offices in 1939, at which time SS chief Heinrich Himmler announced a smoking ban for all uniformed police and SS officers while on duty. The Journal of the American Medical Association that year reported Hermann Goering's decree barring soldiers from smoking on the streets, on marches, and on brief off duty periods. Sixty of Germany's largest cities banned smoking on street cars in 1941. Smoking was banned in air raid shelters-though some shelters reserved separate rooms for smokers. During the war years tobacco rationing coupons were denied to pregnant women (and to all women below the age of while restaurants and cafes were barred from selling cigarettes to female customers. From July 1943 it was illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to smoke in public. Smoking was banned on all German city trains and buses in 1944, the initiative coming from Hitler himself, who was worried about exposure of young female conductors to tobacco smoke. NS policies were heralded as marking "the beginning of the end" of tobacco use in Germany.

German tobacco epidemiology by this time was the most advanced in the world. Franz H Muller in 1939 and Eberhard Schairer and Erich Schoniger in 1943 were the first to use case-control epidemiological methods to document the lung cancer hazard from cigarettes. Muller concluded that the "extraordinary rise in tobacco use" was "the single most important cause of the rising incidence of lung cancer." Heart disease was another focus and was not infrequently said to be the most serious illness brought on by smoking. Late in the war nicotine was suspected as a cause of the coronary heart failure suffered by a surprising number of soldiers on the eastern front. A 1944 report by an army field pathologist found that all 32 young soldiers whom he had examined after death from heart attack on the front had been "enthusiastic smokers." The author cited the Freiburg pathologist Franz Buchner's view that cigarettes should be considered "a coronary poison of the first order."

On 20 June 1940 Hitler ordered tobacco rations to be distributed to the military "in a manner that would dissuade" soldiers from smoking. Cigarette rations were limited to six per man per day, with alternative rations available for non-smokers(for example, chocolate or extra food). Extra cigarettes were sometimes available for purchase, but these were generally limited to 50 per man per month and were often unavailable-as during times of rapid advance or retreat. Tobacco rations were denied to women accompanying the Wehrmacht. An ordinance on 3 November 1941 raised tobacco taxes to a higher level than they had ever been (80-95% of the retail price).Tobacco taxes would not rise that high again for more than a quarter of a century after Hitler's defeat.

The net effect of these and other measures (for instance, medical lectures to discourage soldiers from smoking) was to lower tobacco consumption by the military during the war years. A 1944 survey of 1000 servicemen found that, whereas the proportion of soldiers smoking had increased (only 12.7% were non-smokers), the total consumption of tobacco had decreased-by just over 14%. More men were smoking (101 of those surveyed had taken up the habit during the war, whereas only seven had given it up) but the average soldier was smoking about a quarter (23.4%) less tobacco than in the immediate prewar period. The number of very heavy smokers (30 or more cigarettes daily) was down dramatically-from 4.4% to only 0.3%-and similar declines were recorded for moderately heavy smokers.

After the war Germany lost its position as home to the world's most aggressive anti-tobacco science. Hitler was dead but also many of his anti-tobacco underlings either had lost their jobs or were otherwise silenced. Karl Aster, head of Jena's Institute for Tobacco Hazards Research (and rector of the University of Jena and an officer in the SS), committed suicide in his office on the night of 3-4 April 1945.Reich Health Fuhrer Leonardo Conti, another anti-tobacco activist,committed suicide on 6 October 1945 in an allied prison while awaiting prosecution for his role in the euthanasia programme. Hans Reiter, the Reich Health Office president who once characterised nicotine as "the greatest enemy of the people's health" and "the number one drag on the German economy" was interned in an American prison camp for two years, after which he worked as a physician in a clinic in Kassel, never again returning to public service. Gauleiter Fritz Sauckel, the guiding light behind Thuringia's antismoking campaign and the man who drafted the grant application for Astel's anti-tobacco institute, was executed on 1 October 1946 for crimes against humanity. It is hardly surprising that much of the wind was taken out of the sails of Germany's anti-tobacco movement."

:hve­rungur:
Thursday, December 23rd, 2004, 06:46 PM
This is pretty hypocritical, considering many of the higher ranking members of the third reich were smokers. Thats like a white man saying "Dont mix races kids, it isnt good. Now if you will excuse me my black girlfriend is waiting for me"

Agrippa
Thursday, December 23rd, 2004, 07:16 PM
This is pretty hypocritical, considering many of the higher ranking members of the third reich were smokers. Thats like a white man saying "Dont mix races kids, it isnt good. Now if you will excuse me my black girlfriend is waiting for me"

If its about campaigns and rules its more about the benefits and normative effect than about whether certain people behind the scenes are role models or not.
Sure its better they are, but if not and they are saying what they should say and its useful, its at least better than a fat guy, smoking a fat cigar saying: "No sports."

Because standards are on the long run not just made by the existing reality alone, but the theoretical normative rules on the long run as well, so I dont really know why you are criticising the NS party, with many members being good role models if its about that anyway.
They were absolutely right about that issue and the posters are just great.

Furthermore for women smoking is an even much worse thing than for men for many reasons and in the case of pregnancy its even more serious.

P.S.: I would have only begin to smoke regularly if I would have been in the war...
I could be abstinent from smoking and alcohol without having any real problem, but to turn meat down would be a much more difficult problem...

:hve­rungur:
Friday, December 24th, 2004, 04:51 AM
If its about campaigns and rules its more about the benefits and normative effect than about whether certain people behind the scenes are role models or not.
Sure its better they are, but if not and they are saying what they should say and its useful, its at least better than a fat guy, smoking a fat cigar saying: "No sports."

Because standards are on the long run not just made by the existing reality alone, but the theoretical normative rules on the long run as well, so I dont really know why you are criticising the NS party, with many members being good role models if its about that anyway.
They were absolutely right about that issue and the posters are just great.

Furthermore for women smoking is an even much worse thing than for men for many reasons and in the case of pregnancy its even more serious.

P.S.: I would have only begin to smoke regularly if I would have been in the war...
I could be abstinent from smoking and alcohol without having any real problem, but to turn meat down would be a much more difficult problem...
So im going to listen to a group of people who smoke, telling me that smoking is bad? If you are going to spread propaganda about something, telling people it is bad, everyone involved should lead by example. Of course thats just my opinion.

Agrippa
Friday, December 24th, 2004, 02:34 PM
So im going to listen to a group of people who smoke, telling me that smoking is bad? If you are going to spread propaganda about something, telling people it is bad, everyone involved should lead by example. Of course thats just my opinion.

Sure, but to admit to have certain weaknesses and leads to, "ah the leader does it, its ok, lets do it too..."
So if its important things, behaviour like it should by, its better being hypocritical and influencing as much people as possible as spreading a false behaviour and always admitting negative weaknesses which discourage people and make negative normative trends.
But right, the leadership should be a role model in such campaign, but to say only campaigns are justified in which the WHOLE leadership is a role model means to destroy every useful campaign as long as humans are humans of our time...

QuietWind
Sunday, December 26th, 2004, 12:02 AM
I think that anti-smoking policies are great and it is wonderful to see this was being done in the third reich. I do not smoke and have never smoked. I never understand how women can take up smoking, not only because of the health reasons, but also because of the ugliness of it.

Jack
Sunday, December 26th, 2004, 01:05 AM
I smoke :P I'm with Vinlands Hammer here. Smoking serves its purposes and so I view it as not an entirely bad thing. Education can serve to discourage those who don't really care about it, though I believe it should be left open as an option for individuals to choose.

:hve­rungur:
Sunday, December 26th, 2004, 10:41 PM
Im more against the Hypocricy of such propaganda created by National Socialist germany. when the same person who im sure put this whole thing together was a smoker himself.

Rollon
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2005, 09:33 PM
Im more against the Hypocricy of such propaganda created by National Socialist germany. when the same person who im sure put this whole thing together was a smoker himself.
Banning tobacco serves a public health purpose, so one can be a smoker, for personal historical reasons, and be aware that tobacco is a nuisance that should be eradicated if you want the people to be healthy.

The damages of compulsive smoking among a population are huge. Children of smoking parents are physically impaired : at birth such babies are insanely light-weighted. They are predisposed to all sorts of diseases and ailments.

Honest, or consciuos, long-time smokers describe their experience as a nightmare : they see how tobacco harms them, but they cannot stop, so they wish they had not started in the first place.

The cost for the collectivity, in terms of medical insurance for tobacco-addicted people, is also to be taken into account. Not to mention the nuisance for non-smokers in public space.

The Jews who control the tobacco business always raise the argument of moral hypocrisy, or the menace of an impending moral order, to dismiss their opponents. But they are infamous.

Draco
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2005, 11:00 PM
More evidence (as if we needed any more) that National(Natural) Socialism was truly working hard to create and maintain a healthy organic state.

Sorry for the short post, but my feelings on this matter are very succint.


The wrath of the Red Man against the White Man for having been given hard liquor.

Hah! Quite true, more people should think of tobacco like that. I wonder if he got it from a Karl May book as a child?

BuzKlown
Sunday, January 27th, 2008, 01:52 AM
http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/313/7070/1450

ladybright
Sunday, January 27th, 2008, 03:11 AM
This reminds me of another article I just read about the NHS in Britian. What do you think about the nazi antismoking campaign? I think it may have been the best thing they did.

Doctors are calling for NHS treatment to be withheld from patients who are too old or who lead unhealthy lives.

Smokers, heavy drinkers, the obese and the elderly should be barred from receiving some operations, according to doctors, with most saying the health service cannot afford to provide free care to everyone.

Fertility treatment and "social" abortions are also on the list of procedures that many doctors say should not be funded by the state.

The findings of a survey conducted by Doctor magazine sparked a fierce row last night, with the British Medical Association and campaign groups describing the recommendations from family and hospital doctors as "out*rageous" and "disgraceful".
full article (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/01/27/nhs127.xml&CMP=ILC-mostviewedbox)

Elysium
Sunday, January 27th, 2008, 11:35 AM
This reminds me of another article I just read about the NHS in Britian. What do you think about the nazi antismoking campaign? I think it may have been the best thing they did.

full article (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/01/27/nhs127.xml&CMP=ILC-mostviewedbox)

Apparently Hitler thought it messed around with your genes; which, now has been found to be true in the form of the destruction or modification of freeradicals, which are passed down.

The best thing they did? No way. :)