Adolf Hitler was born on April 20, 1889 in Braunau am Inn, Austria and spent his childhood there, nicknamed as “Adi”. He dreamed of becoming an artist but did not pass the entrance exam in Vienna. However, he became a venerated soldier in World War I and eventually went into politics. He was responsible for starting World War II and for killing more than 11 million people during the Holocaust. However, his leadership helped Germany to recover and also led to some positive campaigns and the development of technologies that have helped modern society thrive today. Despite the scars that the world has yet to heal, there are some lesser evils related to this man highlighted as follows:
10. Olympic Torch Relay
Hitler inaugurated the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin that was marked with a lot of controversy. The torch relay was one of the ways which helped define the modern Olympic experience as we know it today. The ancient Greeks had run relay races that involved flames as part of their worship to the Gods, but there had been no such symbolism in the modern Games.In the lead-up to the Games, the Nazi Propaganda Ministry supported a relay of the Olympic flame. This would not only provide spectacular footage for Olympia (the 1938 film) but also for significant political and public relations benefit.
9. Blow-up dolls
Hitler reportedly was the first person to approve blow-up dolls for army men. The project was meant to “counterbalance” the sexual desires of German troops and was considered “more secret than top secret”. Media reports had quoted Hitler as saying, “It is our duty to prevent soldiers from risking their health for the sake of a quick adventure.” Later, the plan of using sex dolls for the troops was dismissed in 1942. Many German soldiers refused to carry those blow-up dolls in their back-packs to avoid embarrassment in case they were captured by the British.
8. The outfits
The founders of Adidas were the brothers Adolf and Rudolf Dassler. Jesse Owens of the Summer 1936 Olympic Games, wore the new running shoes with spikes which they had designed. Following Owens’s haul of four gold medals, his success cemented their reputation. Eventually, the two split up over their dispute relating to the Nazi Party. It seemed Rudolph was more pro-Nazi than his brother. He later went on to create the company “Ruda” which was renamed as “Puma”. The two companies exist successfully to this day.
7. Film technology
The interest that Adolf Hitler took in film was not only the result of a personal fascination. Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) and Triumph des Willens (Leni Riefenstahl, 1934), two important German films separated by almost a decade, reflect very different feelings of nationalism. These controversial films were created as a means to propogate the Nazi party further. Leni Riefenstahl was heavily influenced by The Third Reich. She used an astounding thirty film cameras and over one hundred technicians to produce the two hour film. Since this film had an unlimited budget, the latest technologies were used. Cranes and track-rail filming were used, techniques still used today to make a smooth ‘traveling’ effect. This led to pioneering techniques of camera movement and editing that have influenced many later films.
6. Winterhilfswerk of the German People (WHW)
After Hitler was appointed Chancellor, the “Winter Help Work—WHW” was started. In a speech he explained, “This great campaign against hunger and cold is governed by this principle: We have broken the international solidarity of the proletariat. We want to build the living national solidarity of the German people!” It was the official Nazi-Party winter relief charity. Welfare programs were important as they made recipients more open to propaganda and created support. Money was collected in many ways. One of the most obvious ways was using the Hitler Youth children to collect coins. At first this was on street corners and later, the children began going door to door. Badges were another means to promote this program. The Nazi’s in 1933-34 claimed that WHW beneficiaries exceeded 16.6 million persons. This would mean that one out of every four Germans received WHW assistance.
5. Animal protection
After the suicide of his niece, Hitler witnessed the autopsy and became so disgusted that he renounced meat forever. Today, it is acknowledged by historians that he followed a vegetarian diet during the war. At social occasions, he sometimes gave graphic descriptions of how animals were slaughtered to discourage the guests from eating meat. He was an avid antivivisectionist like many other members of the Nazi party. In 1934, a national hunting law was passed known as “The Reich Hunting Law”. It regulated proper hunting seasons and the number of animals to be killed per year. It also supported the bill for animal conservation education in primary, secondary and college levels. Another law was passed in 1935, called “Reich Nature Protection Act” which was for protection of several native species such as the Eurasian Lynx. These hunting and conversations laws are used as legal guidelines in Europe even today.
4. Stop smoking!
Adolf Hitler was a heavy smoker in his early life—he used to smoke 25 to 40 cigarettes daily—but gave up the habit, concluding that it was a waste of money. He promised to end the use of tobacco in the military after the end of the war and personally encouraged close friends not to smoke. The ones who quit the habit were rewarded as well. His personal distaste for tobacco was one of the catalysts behind the anti-smoking campaign on a nationwide level. The National Socialist leadership condemned smoking and several of them openly criticized tobacco consumption. Smoking was banned from government offices, civic transport, university campuses, rest homes, post offices, many restaurants and bars, hospital grounds and workplaces. Research on smoking and its effects on health thrived as well. They limited cigarette rations in the Wehrmacht, organized medical lectures for soldiers, and raised the tobacco tax. Earlier, such anti-tobacco campaigns had been tried out in Europe but none had been implemented on a scale as under the reign of Hitler.
3. Rocket technology
Werner von Braun, developed the V-2 as director of Hitler’s research station at Peenemunde. He was was a part of the Nazi Party and commissioned Schutzstaffel Officer. After the war, Britain, the US and the Soviet Union all gained access to the V-2’s technical designs and liaised with the German scientists responsible for developing it. Braun eventually got captured by the allies and later became a naturalized citizen in USA and went on to work with NASA, furthering pioneering in rocket science that paved the way for destruction and creation as well. His best achievement there was undoubtedly the development of the Saturn V booster rocket, that helped man to finally touch the moon, in July 1969.
2. Gehen Auf de Autobahns! (Go to the highway)
These freeways were called “autobahns” in Germany. Did you know that Hitler was actually involved in furthering the construction of these freeways when he took over as Chancellor? Plans for the autobahn date to the 1920’s. Their construction began in September 1933. Eventually by December 1941, they had completed 2,400 miles (3,860 km), with another 1,550 miles (2,500 km) under construction. The highway network enhanced Germany’s ability to fight on two fronts-Europe in the west, the Soviet Union in the east during World War II. This was eventually used in America in 1940’s where car congestion’s had begun to occur. American president Eisenhower explained years later, “after seeing the autobahns of modern Germany and knowing the asset those highways were to the Germans, I decided, as President, to put an emphasis on this kind of road building. The old  convoy had started me thinking about good, two-lane highways, but Germany had made me see the wisdom of broader ribbons across the land.”. The rest, as we know, is history.
1. The people’s car
Hitler proposed to build a cheap car that almost anyone could afford. He gave it the name “KdF Wagen,”. KdF was the abbreviation for “Kraft durch Freude” (Strength through Joy), a subsidiary of the German Labor Front. He advised the designer that it should resemble a beetle. In 1934, Porsche submitted the best design — and was awarded the contract. At the 1935 German auto show, Hitler was full of praise for Porsche. He wanted to call the factory the “Porsche Plant,” but Ferdinand Porsche was opposed to the idea. Instead, it became the Volkswagen Plant instead. The car was a huge success (it was made available to citizens of the Third Reich through a savings scheme at 990 Reichsmark, about the price of a small motorcycle), but toward the end of the war resources were low and public availability declined. However, till this day, the legacy of Volkswagen continues to thrive all over the world with its great design and performance.