Monday, August 06, 2012

"Which international head of state snubbed Jesse Owens after his triumph at the 1936 Olympics?"

A German sports reporter, Siegfried Mischner, has claimed Owens carried a photograph of himself shaking hands with Hitler and called it 'one of my most beautiful moments'. 
Mischner, 83, says he and several other reporters saw the handshake behind the stands at the Olympic stadium but never mentioned it. Owens and other eyewitnesses always maintained that the story of Hitler's snub was exaggerated...

'After all those stories about Hitler and his snub, I came back to my native country and I couldn't ride in the front of the bus,' Owens recalled. 'I had to go to the back door. I couldn't live where I wanted. Now what's the difference?' 

Owens was given a tickertape parade in New York. But when he arrived at the Waldorf Astoria hotel for a reception in his honour, he was instructed to take the service lift rather than the normal guest lift, which was reserved for whites.

President Franklin Roosevelt never congratulated Owens or invited him to the White House. 'Hitler didn't snub me - it was FDR who snubbed me,' Owens said. 

And Owens had his own memories of Berlin which differed starkly from the propaganda version. While the Nazis vilified the black American athletes, the German people cheered on Owens and his team-mates, clamouring for photos and autographs.

TYWKIWDBI ("Tai-Wiki-Widbee"): "Which international head of state snubbed Jesse Owens after his triumph at the 1936 Olympics?"

No comments: