May 15, 2011

Zeppelin over Jerusalem


The German airship LZ127 Graf Zeppelin was in service from 1928 to 1937. Two of it's 590 flights were over Jerusalem. The first occurred on March 26, 1929. It was a night flight, during which they dropped mail into the German colony at Jaffa. The second flight, pictured above, was from Cairo on April 11, 1931. The ship hovered above the Church of Holy Sepulchre for several minutes.

25 comments:

Local said...

Was this supposed to be an air/ mail service ?
What was its route?
Was there more to its purpose?

michael molovinsky said...

it was a side trip from the main germany to cairo passenger run. the ships did carry mail for extra revenue, but it was not the purpose of the flight. this particular ship made 64 flights between germany and south america. it also made a well know research trip to the arctic. there are special commemorative stamped postcards for these different trips. there is no less than four photographs of the ship over jerusalem. it was quite a novelty at the time.

Anonymous said...

The German Zeppelin flew high back then until, of course, it crashed and burned --- as would the German national ice hockey team in this period.

Germany, with a young guy named Rudi Ball on board, won the European Championship and finished 2nd overall at the World Championships in 1930 --- still the country's best-ever showing to date.

As the Zeppelin flew over Jerusalem and Cairo in the spring of 1931, both Rudi Ball and Germany were preparing to receive for even more honors with the coming hockey season.

In December of 1931, a French newspaper named Ball the best hockey player in the world. Shortly thereafter, Germany picked up the bronze medal at the 1932 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid in the United States. Ball scored three goals in the decisive 4-1 victory over Poland.

cont

Anonymous said...

Ball then scored six goals for Germany at the 1933 World Championships in Prague to rank third amongst all participants...

...but was abruptly dropped from the squad just prior to the 1934 World Championships in Milan.

By this time, Ball had just completed his first season with EHC St. Moritz in Switzerland having changed from the famous Schlittschuhclub Berlin...

...meanwhile, Adolf Hitler and his Nazi minions were, by now, in complete control over every aspect of life in Germany.

Anonymous said...

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the so-called Nazi Olympics...

...the 1936 Winter Games were staged at Garmisch-Partenkirchen while the 1936 Summer Games were held in Berlin.

But is there anybody still around who knows the story?

gary ledebur said...

One of the effective political strategies of the Nazis was their ability to gain the support of the rich businesses and businessmen of Germany. F. Porsche, Seimens, Krupps, Damlier Benz, BMW, IG Farben, Hugo Boss, and Opel all got big federal contracts and tax breaks. Most are still around and doing very well. Hitler was smart to avoid what we now call "class warfare" and find a weaker group to blame for the fatherland's economic and social problems.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Molovinsky,
We can't comment on separate Allentown categories under this most serious of entries. Perhaps tomorrow.

michael molovinsky said...

anon 6:49, actually please do comment. i posted this photograph simply because i find it extremely interesting, photographically. it was not my intention to spring board a discussion of nazi germany.

gary ledebur said...

After the Nazi party came to power in Germany, it acquired control of the Zeppelin company. They effectively used the zeppelins for propaganda.

MM posts a picture of a Nazi airship and hopes not to talk politics?

michael molovinsky said...

gary, i have done a number of posts on nazi germany and the holocaust, but that was not the intention or my desire for this post. the nazi's came to power in 1933, this photograph is from 1931. the zeppelin first flew over Jerusalem in 1929.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Mr. Molovinsky,

Could not but help lay a trap for dear old Ledebur.

Germany won their first three games this year at the World Championships for the first time since --- 1930.

We are in the midst of a Renaissance under the leadership of former NHL player UWE KRUPP and we would like to celebrate.

Such activities include recognizing great players in our history, a group that certainly includes RUDI BALL. Of course, we made mistakes with Rudi Ball. Indeed, we made a lot of mistakes with a lot of people, as is well known to some but, perhaps, not all.

cont

Anonymous said...

The Rudi Ball saga teaches a lesson that ALL in the sporting world (and perhaps a few others, too) can learn from.

Basically, anytime you are not picking the best players based purley on atheltic prowess --- you are asking for trouble, if only in terms of wins and losses. It really is that simple (but can certainly be more complicated).

As Martin Luther King might say, judge an athlete on the basis of the content of his athletic skills and that alone.

Fairly simple stuff, then, one would THINK everyone can agree on.

Then again, maybe not...

cont

Anonymous said...

It is very hard to find information on Rudi Ball in German hockey history books and Germans, themselves, are extremely reluctant to discuss him.

Ledebur here, shows us all why that would be...they are afraid the conversation will degenerate into a "let's beat the shit out of the Nazis" festival. And it is not because the Germans are interested in defending the Nazis.

Look at the national football team --- we have black guys, Turkish guys, Eastern Europeans...nowadays, we give a passport and a shirt to any good player who will accept such.

But, whatever.

cont

Anonymous said...

Meanwhile, Lebebur, himself, is the one who constantly runs around here challenging everyone to grow and/or be positive.

Rudi Ball is a great German Jewish hockey player who deserves to be discussed more, not less, and at every opportunity...if people are not careful, they just might learn something.

On the other hand, if people want to haul off and have at the National Socialist German Worker's Party for everything they ever did --- fine, so be it. I am very happy to get out of the way. Go to town and have as much fun as you like.

So, positive or negative.

I leave the readers to decide for themselves...

gary ledebur said...

George Santayana tought us that those who fail to remember the past are condemned to relive it. My point should have been clear. The zeppelin was a symbol of a regime that persecuted a minority, even to the point of genocide, while the oligarchs were supported and praised. This dynamic is being played out today in the United States. Identifying a class or race to blame for our problems is wrong. It was wrong in the 1930s and it is wrong today.

Local said...

The zeppelin was an amazing creation - aside from the war issue.
Many if not most of our greatest inventions were first grabbed up and used for military purposes.
These wonderful inventions are no less great because men see fit to use them for evil.

Anonymous said...

those of us whose parents and grandparents were in Germany during the war have different feelings when we see this "great inventions."

Local said...

You miss the point.
Inventions are not inherently evil.
Less than ten years after the wright brothers first flight people were dropping explosive devices over the side.
How about these new remotely operated aircraft? There is a nearly an endless list of uses
for them. How many uses for these great devices do you know about aside from warfare?

Anonymous said...

I guess you have to be a Jew to fully understand this issue. My mother still cries every time she sees any pictures of the Nazi era and their symbols.

Anonymous said...

LOCAL :

Guns don't kill people.

People who point guns at people kill people.

Sadly, your point WAS completely missed.

Oh well...some people can never be reached...the real question becomes, why even bother?

Anonymous said...

"I guess you have to be a Jew to fully understand this issue"

Oh, really?

With all due respect, I could not disagree any more completely with such an arrogant and Holier-than-thou statement.

Next time I look around and see everyone in the Middle East ganging up on Israel, I might just have to remember this rather insulting statement.

So, have a nice day and don't be shocked if no one wants to come help Israel.

Anonymous said...

Lots of people suffered under the Nazis...

Congratulations, Mr. Molovinsky.

You let this go on long enough so that I might learn a lesson.

Well done, then. And I have learned.

I will never, ever discuss Rudi Ball any time, any place, anywhere ever again.

Thank you for helping me to grow.

michael molovinsky said...

the photograph showed a blimp over jerusalem. it was not meant to foster a discussion of nazism, the holocaust, israel or jews. although i have covered all those topics on this blog, these important things tend to become trivialized when everybody is on a different page. by coincidence, i am preparing a holocaust related post which will appear in a couple days. likewise, this blog will soon visit israel once again.

Anonymous said...

thank you Mr. Molovinsky for allowing your blog to be an agent of education. I think some folks are sensitized to the issue and some, well, ....

Local said...

Michael,
After reading this again,
I am thinking that this flight was 14 years after WWI.
Did the technology come from WWI or nazis?
Were the Nazis actively inventing things in the late 1920's?
Is there a more symbolic side to the Zeppelin/ nazi connection?
I Liked reading about Rudi Ball and do hope that the writer will at least occasionally keep posting.
I am not too well educated about the politics of Israel or their ancient history.
So I'm counting on you for historic episodes as well as social and political commentary.
Thanks