Almost a Hero- Max Schmeling

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Almost a Hero- Max Schmeling by Mind Map: Almost a Hero- Max  Schmeling

1. Important Passages

1.1. "He was everywhere reviled, cursed to his face, with mocking Heil Hitler salutes thrown before him. When he did not cooperate by delivering pro-Nazi statements, inflammatory quotes were attributed to him. Yankee Stadium would be packed to the facade for the rematch, and in a nation of 130 million, 70 million listened on the radio. When Louis pulverized Schmeling in barely two minutes, America rejoiced,."

1.1.1. Showed how badly he was viewed and shown to be during the war

1.2. "What is so sadly fascinating about Schmeling is that he never revised the history of his actions during the early years of the Third Reich. He is honest, even as his admissions stain him. Many Germans who looked back on that time made Hitler out to be a bumbling fool. I saw through him, they wanted you to know. Schmeling, however, wrote matter-of-factly in his memoirs that he at first found the Fuhrer "relaxed...charming...confident," He was seduced. He kept an autographed photograph of Hitler on the wall in his study."

1.2.1. Shows how honest about his actions and thoughts he is.

1.3. ""After the war," he wrote in An Autobiography, "many, perhaps hoping to fool themselves, claimed to have no knowledge of what went on. In truth, we all knew. It was no secret that there were camps in Germany; it was openly discussed in the Roxy Bar""

1.3.1. He is basically calling out the people who are saying that they didn't know about the camps in Germany.

1.4. "He simply accepts his great age as "a present from heaven.""

1.4.1. Shows that he is humble

1.5. "Nevertheless, while some of Louis's opponents entered the ring scared stiff, Schmeling was not the least bit frightened. A foolish man he might be, but a brave one."

1.5.1. Shows how Max is confident even when the circumstances were against him.

1.6. "Likewise, those close to Louis would eventually understand that his defeat at the hands of Schmeling might have been a blessing in disguise. The Brown Bomber had come to think of himself as invincible. He had been slothful in training, cocky going into the ring. Schmeling taught him a lesson. What's more, Schmeling would come to appreciate that his defeat in the return bout saved him from becoming, as he wrote, "forever the 'Aryan Show Horse' of the Third Reich.""

1.6.1. Shows how they learned from each other and what they gained from their first fight.

2. Hero/Villain

2.1. "Max Schmeling was the dirty rotten Nazi who got lucky and beat Joe Louis, but then got his comeuppance when our good Joe demolished him in the rematch---sticking it to Hitler in the bargain."

2.1.1. How people in America viewed Max during World War 2. He was viewed as a villain

2.2. "With his considerable wealth, Schmeling has become a philanthropist, so he has his foundation to attend to, giving millions to the poor."

2.2.1. Shows how he is a hero

2.3. "He was a hero to Germany before Hitler--- he was the first great German boxer, the first German to win a world championship."

2.3.1. Shows how he was viewed as a hero by Germans

3. Extra Details

3.1. "In the long run, though, Schmeling would pay, because victory made him a Nazi talisman. Hitler greeted Schmeling -- along with his wife and mother -- when he returned the hero, having crossed the Atlantic in style in the Hindenburg zeppelin."

3.1.1. Foreshadows the fact that Schmeling is going to have trouble in his future

3.2. "Meanwhile, Louis, the black champion who couldn't walk into a restaurant and get a meal in much of the country, was transformed into an all-American symbol, guardian of our precious liberty and equality, while Owens raced against horses at state fairs and tried to get a nine-to-five job."

3.3. "His favorite cornerman, fearful for his life, refused to work the bout, and as Schmeling move through the crowd toward the ring, he had to cover his head to protect it from the debris that rained down on him."

3.3.1. Showed the differences between the first match and the second match

3.4. "Schmeling cried , but he said he didn't like being "glorified""

3.4.1. Shows how humble he is

3.5. "When he finally returned to America, in 1954, his first stop was at a Jewish cemetery in New York, where Joe Jacobs was buried. Schmeling then went to Chicago and, unannounced, visited Louis. The two former foes chewed the fat until three in the morning."

3.5.1. Showed how much he cared about the people he has met

3.6. "The German Jewish boy whom Schmeling had saved was now a rich American carrying a present to the family of the black man who, by thrashing Schmeling years before, had saved the injustice of any longer being the Fatherland's pride and joy. "Oh," says Joe Barrow, Jr., "there were always tears in Max's eyes when he talked of my father's death.""

3.6.1. Shows ho he impacted the family of his former foe

4. Important People

4.1. Anny- the wife of Max and her choices affected his image and reputation.

4.2. Joe Louis- beat Max in the rematch fight and so Hitler stopped using Max as a showhorse

4.3. Hitler- makes Max seem like a villain

4.4. Joe 'Yussel' Jacobs- The Jewish manager that Max never fired and that lead to people being mad at him and showed that Max had guts

4.5. Jewish Kids- Showed how Max was a hero because he could have been killed while trying to save them

4.6. Josef Goebbels- the propaganda manager for Hitler who was angry at Max for not getting rid of his Jewish manager

5. Important Details

5.1. "He had spent so much time in the U.S.--- rarely fighting anywhere else from 1929 till the war--- that as a spiritual German-American he viewed New York as a "second home""

5.2. "The head of the Reich Ministry of Sports wrote a letter to Schmeling demanding that he get rid of his Jewish manager, but Max Schmeling would not give up Yussel Jacobs"

5.2.1. This showed how he went against some of the views of Germans.

5.3. "Over the years Schmeling would quietly send Louis money, and when the Brown Bomber died, in 1981, Schmeling asked Henri Lewin to go to the funeral, with a substantial gift for the widow."

5.3.1. Shows how he cared about his old foe even when he died

6. Important Quotes

6.1. "I have had a very eventful life. I have been shaped by two world wars, by success and defeat, and by the beautiful times life has to offer."

6.1.1. Shows how he is humble

6.2. "So, how would you like to be remembered , Max? "I would not like to be remembered as someone who amounted to so much as an athlete but who was good for nothing as a person. I couldn't stand that." Are you religious? "To me, religion means to give, to do good. I live my life as if there were a God.""

6.2.1. Shows how much of a good person he is

6.3. "Louis's son, Joe Louis Barrow Jr., says, "The parallels between my father and Max were quite considerable. Max had never really experienced prejudice till he came back over here in '38 and had pickets and felt hatred. Then he realized what so many whites never do-- exactly what it is blacks have to go through."

6.3.1. Shows how bad racial issues are in that time period and how bad the hatred of Max was.

6.4. " What are you thinking, Herr Schmeling? You just go ahead and do whatever you please. You don't concern yourself with laws. You come to the Fuhrer, you come to me, and still you continue to socialize with Jews."

6.4.1. Shows how much he was pressured to quit accoicating with the Jews

6.5. "Max was a man of the highest quality" he says. "If they had caught him hiding us, they would have shot him. Let me tell you: if I had been Max Schmeling in Germany in 1938, I wouldn't have done it."

6.5.1. Shows how he cared about people and what his heart is like.

7. Major Events

7.1. "New York City in June 1938 to take Joe Louis's championship back to Hitler"

7.2. "When Schmeling refused to accept the Nazi Dagger of Honor, an award that had gone only to the most prominent dignitaries--- and that would have made Schmeling an honorary commander in the SA, the storm troopers-- the Fuhrer didn't seem disturbed, even though other top Nazis were appalled at Schmeling's audacious rudeness."

7.3. "He tossed away whatever chance he had to salvage respect from the Nazis when the German ambassador to the U.S. visited him in the hospital and tried to get him to claim that Louis had fouled him. Schmeling refused, and with that, he was effectively dismissed as a German."

7.3.1. This shows that he has the honestly not to lie about the fight.

7.4. "Ironically, had Schmeling not come to New York the previous December to scout Louis in his fight against Uzcudun Paolino, the U.S. might have boycotted the Berlin Games. Schmeling had agreed to his government's "request" that he meet with Avery Brundage, the American Olympic Committee president, a few days before the committee voted on whether the participate in Berlin. Claiming to speak on behalf of "German athletes," Schmeling assured Brundage that American Jews and blacks would not be discriminated against."

7.4.1. He made the United States go to the Olympics in Berlin when he talked to the committee president.

7.5. "When he failed to accuse the English army of cruelty in Crete and declared anew that "I have always seen America as my second home," Goebbels was so angry that he ordered Schmeling's name never to be printed again down through all the millennia of the Third Reich"

7.5.1. This made the Germans basically disown him

7.6. "On Kristallnacht--when Nazi gangs roamed the streets of Berlin and other cities destroying Jewish property, burning synagogues, and assaulting and killing Jews -- David Lewin, desperate, told his sons, fifteen-year-old Werner and fourteen-year-old Henri, to go to the Excelsior Hotel, where Schmeling had a suite, find David's old Gentile friend, and tell him of their plight. ... Schmeling spirited them up to his room, where he hid them for two days. "He risked everything for us," Henri recalls. "We hid from the housekeepers, waiters, other friends of Max's. He told the front desk he was sick and not to let anyone come up." The boys cowered, Schmeling sharing with them what food he had, while, outside, the Nazi thugs ran amok. Finally, after two days, as the pillaging and bloodletting abated, Schmeling took Werner and Henri out of his suite, escorting them first to his house in another section of town and then to the Lewin family apartment. Eventually, the boys and their parents escaped to a Jewish enclave in Shanghai, where -- frying pan to the fire -- they would end up as captives of the Japanese."