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Werner Klemperer & John Banner – Silent Night

An evening pause: Silent Night is followed by Robert Clary singing a French carol. All three were actors from the 1960s television comedy series, Hogan’s Heroes, with Klemperer playing the Nazi prison commander, Banner the foolish guard (“I know nothing!!!”), and Clary the French prisoner.

I don’t know exactly when this aired, but it was likely in the late 1960s. It signals the good will fundamental to western civilization. The Germans had only two decades earlier put the world through a horrible war. Still, Americans were glad to hear two Germans immigrants sing this gentle song in their native language, despite the evils that nation had subjected the world to so recently.

The war was over. We are all fallible humans. Time to forgive, and move on.

Hat tip Phill Oltmann.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • tom wright

    Some trivia about Werner Klemperer:

    He was a member of a well known German family or artists and academics. His father was the great conductor Otto Klemperer, and his cousin Victor Klemperer was an academic who kept diaries of his life as a Jew in Nazi Germany. The diaries were published as “I Will Bear Witness”, also a diary of living in post-war East Germany as “The Lesser Evil”.

    All are highly recommended reading for students and opponents of totalitarian thought.

  • wayne

    This is from a Bing Crosby Christmas Special show, but I do not know the year.

  • wayne

    another flash-from-the-past….

    This Day in History: December 21, 1968, 7:51am
    Apollo 8 launch
    -amateur super-8 film-

  • wayne. Oh gosh, I was going to post about your father’s super8 film and forgot about. I will do something in the next day.

  • George C

    All three singers were from the cast of Hogan’s Heros? wow.

  • Wayne:

    That is awesome. Hard to relate the mindset at the time, but three people were going “Where no man had gone before”, and leading to one of the seminal moments in human exploration. The rocketry field was still a bit of a chancy business, and I’m watching the film, thinking “Please don’t blow up.” Of course it didn’t, but still..

    Thank you for sharing.

  • wayne

    Great factoids! I was not aware of the diary!

    George C:
    ..and they were all Jewish, if I recall correctly.
    and… look up “The Chicago Teddy Bears,” a short lived (13 episodes) comedy from 1971-ish, which featured John Banner. (I think some episodes are up at Youtube, but haven’t looked recently.)

    Glad you like it! Witnessing that launch in-person, made me the amateur science-geek I am today.
    (I dubbed in some music for my own personal copy, Def Leppard’s “Rocket.” Not high Art, but it somehow fits…)
    Public Service Announcement:
    –>Blair has a great little blog, he doesn’t post a huge amount but when he does, it’s high-quality stuff!–everyone should take a look.

    Mr. Z.,
    No problem whatsoever! (I didn’t want to step-on anything you had planned.)
    ->I would take this opportunity to publicly thank You & Steve, greatly, for digitizing the film.

  • Ian C.

    “We are all fallible humans. Time to forgive, and move on.”

    Yes, please. Forgive, not forget, move on together where possible, and use the lessons learned to prevent or stop atrocities wherever they (may) happen.

  • Roland

    Entire Show: (58:59)
    Fast forward to 48:00min for Silent Night

  • wayne

    Thanks for finding the whole thing!

  • wayne

    “Carol Of The Bells” in American Sign Language
    Music by BarlowGirl
    Interpreted by Mrs. Rodriguez; 2013

  • Roland

    You’re Welcome Wayne:

    *Many Thanks to Phill Oltmann for inspiring me to successfully search and succeed in finding a moment of history.

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