Boston 2024, the group trying to bring the Olympics to Boston, asked its Twitter followers if they've seen the Nazi propaganda film Olympia yesterday. Facing a fresh drop in support polling and having already paid off every conceivable slimy political insider in Massachusetts, Boston 2024 and their extensive list of PR firms have fallen back on instructing the public to "get inspired" by this Nazi classic.
Remember: This is real and not The Onion.
Boston 2024's official Twitter account tweeted, “Have you seen all top ten Olympics movies on this list? Get inspired.”
The first of the ten movies is Olympia (1936). The author of the list writes, "Where else to start but the first great Olympic film? This epic was directed by Leni Riefenstahl." The obvious answer is anywhere -- anywhere -- else.
Here's The Guardian on Olympia:
[Leni] Riefenstahl was commissioned to direct what was originally supposed to be one film. The previous year, she had directed the ultimate Nazi propaganda movie, Triumph of the Will. At its premiere, the grateful Hitler had pressed a bouquet of lilacs into her arms. She was, he declared, the "perfect German woman."
The director’s resume aside, the film itself is also a piece of Nazi propaganda:
After the war, Riefenstahl – who hoped her films would continue to be shown – claimed that the Nazi government had no influence on Olympia. This was untrue. The Nazi government commissioned and financed the films. Propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels' diaries indicate that he was in contact with Riefenstahl about their progress, though not always positively. ‘It is impossible to work with this wild woman’, he wrote on one occasion. Wild though she may have been, the films are utterly compliant.
Boston 2024 is paying PR firms and consultants "at least $124,000 per month," yet somehow the best sales pitch for the Olympics in Boston that they can muster is telling everyone to go "get inspired" by the Nazis...
The tweet has since been deleted, but no explanation was given. Although Boston 2024 has posted tweets since then, it has not tweeted out a retraction or apology. To make matters worse, United States Olympic Committee PR flak Patrick Sandusky has been defending Boston 2024's choice to share the list on his own Twitter account.
(Seriously, we aren’t The Onion... I can't stress that enough.)