Gutenberg Press II

Lead: In 1455, Johannes Gutenberg began the first book printed in the western world using moveable metal type. Those copies of the Gutenberg Bible that have survived are among the most valued artifacts in the world.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: After spending almost two decades in Strasbourg, working secretly on a new type of printing press, Johannes Gutenberg returned to his hometown of Mainz and formed a partnership so as to exploit his revolutionary invention - movable metal type. There is evidence that movable type had been used in China for thousands of years and even in Europe before Gutenberg’s invention, but the process used fashioned letters from clay or porcelain or wood. They would break, splinter or wear down after a few uses. Gutenberg spent years solving the problem of deterioration. Blocks, each one bearing a precise metallic raised letter on its face were held together tightly in a wooden form, ink was rolled over the raised letters, then the form was pressed against paper. Because the letters were metallic they were extremely durable, could be used over and over again and reformatted to make different words and sentences.

 

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Eugenics II

Lead: From its start as an optimistic approach to improving the human condition, eugenics degenerated into a racist tool in the hands of bigotry and ultimately led to the gas ovens of the Third Reich.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The fundamental problem with eugenics, even as Sir Francis Galton articulated it in the 19th century, was that it focused primarily on inborn characteristics and almost completely disregarded social, environmental, educational, and physical factors when examining the human race. Basically, eugenicists advocated a form of genetic determinism. A person is born with a genetic imprint that determines the course of their lives. Not surprisingly these theories became a powerful tool in the hands of racists. It all depends on who is setting the standard. If society is to improve itself, it is said, it must eliminate genetic threats to racial purity. In the sad history of eugenics, a wide variety of groups have been singled out for social restriction, sterilization, or elimination. Feeble-minded or mentally ill people, habitual criminals, sexual libertines, Negroes, Native Americans or any non-whites, Jews, gypsies, and evangelical Christians have all fallen under the wary and sometimes fatal scrutiny of the eugenic mandate. They bore undesirable human traits.

Nuremberg Trials IV

Lead: In one of history’s longest trials, twenty-two Nazis were tried for crimes against humanity in the heartland of National Socialism, Nuremburg, Germany.

Intro. A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Of the twenty-two original defendants, three were acquitted, seven were sentenced to jail from 10 years to life, and twelve were sentenced to be hanged. Martin Borman, convicted in absentia, escaped the noose, as did Herman Goering, who committed suicide and the most important defendant, the Fuhrer himself, Adolf Hitler. Arthur Gaeth filed this radio report on October 16, 1946.

Nuremberg Trials III

Lead: As the world looked on, the victorious Allies brought to trial Germany's experiment with barbarism. Twenty-two Nazi's were tried for crimes against humanity at Nuremberg.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The trials began on October 18, 1945. The United States, Great Britain, France and the Soviet Union supplied judges for the International Military Tribunal and they heard indictments and testimony in four areas. The defendants were accused of: 1) crimes against peace, in other words they committed aggressive war, 2) crimes against humanity: exterminations, deportations and genocide, 3) war crimes, and 4) that they engaged in a long-term conspiracy to commit the first three.

Nuremberg Trials II

Lead: Faced with undeniable proof of Nazi atrocities, in 1946 the Allies brought twenty-one German leaders to trial for war crimes in the ancient Bavarian city of Nuremberg.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: “The wrongs which we seek to condemn and punish have been so calculated, so malignant and so devastating, that civilization cannot tolerate their being ignored because it cannot survive their being repeated,” thus the words of United States Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson on leave to serve as Chief U.S. Prosecutor in the Nuremberg Trials. With horror stories beginning to emerge as to the extent of Nazi depravity, the Allies were faced with the larger question of what to do with Germany which had twice in thirty years dragged the world to war. Clearly, war crimes and genocide on an unprecedented scale had been committed.

Nuremberg Trials I

Lead: By 1943 the tide of victory had begun to shift in favor of the Allies. How they used that victory would give shape to the postwar world. One of their first tasks was to bring war criminals to justice at Nuremberg.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: As World War II ground on, word began to slip out of occupied Europe describing terrible atrocities. These were not the acts of inhumanity normally associated with war. This was an organized terror rarely experienced in the modern era. Genocide on a scale theretofore considered unimaginable was engulfing groups thought by the Nazis and their allies to be subhuman. Jews, selected evangelical Christians, homosexuals, gypsies, the mentally infirm, and others were gradually being exterminated in Hitler's twisted pursuit of racial purity.

The Beer Hall Putsch

Lead: Adolf Hitler was very bitter when he left the army after World War I. He and many other Germans were angered by what he felt was betrayal on the part of those Germans who had arranged the Armistice ending the war and signed the Treaty of Versailles bring the peace.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The main focus of his malignant energy was the Weimar Republic, the government struggling to bring some semblance of democracy to a Germany many of whose citizens simply did not want it, and Hitler was one of them.

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Hitler’s Generals Conspire

Lead: By the fall of 1938 the Nazis had eliminated most opposition to Hitler but not all.

Intro.: "A Moment In Time” with Dan Roberts.

Content: The press, universities, political parties, the church, and the courts were either fully under the control of the regime or fear had neutralized them. This does not mean there was no opposition. In fact, some of the highest ranking officers of the German military were actively plotting against the Fuhrer. Unlike other Germans who loathed the Nazis, these men could do something about it.

 

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