Goebbels used my photo to show ideal Aryan child

The Jewish Chronicle - - WORLD NEWS - BY ROSA DO­HERTY

A JEWISH woman has re­vealed that a pic­ture of her as a baby was used by the Nazis to por­tray the ideal Aryan in­fant.

A photo of Hessy Taft as a six-mon­thold baby was selected by Nazi com­mu­ni­ca­tions min­is­ter Joseph Goebbels to be used in pro­pa­ganda ma­te­rial.

Speak­ing at the Yad Vashem Holo­caust Me­mo­rial in Jerusalem this week, Ms Taft, now in her 80s and a pro­fes­sor of chem­istry in New York, said “I feel a lit­tle re­venge… some­thing like sat­is­fac­tion.”

Hans Ballin, a pho­tog­ra­pher in Berlin, had en­tered the im­age into a search for the per­fect Aryan baby.

Ms Taft told Ger­many’s Bild news­pa­per: “I can laugh about it now. But if the Nazis had known who I re­ally was, I wouldn’t be alive.”

Ms Taft added that the Nazis did not know that she had been sent in by a pho­tog­ra­pher who wanted to “make them look ridicu­lous”.

Her par­ents, Ja­cob and Pauline Levin­sons, had moved to Berlin from Latvia to pur­sue ca­reers in clas­si­cal mu­sic in 1928.

Mrs Levin­sons took her daugh­ter to Mr Ballin to be pho­tographed in 1935, but was hor­ri­fied to find the pic­ture on the front cover of Sonne ins Hause, a Nazi fam­ily mag­a­zine, months later.

The im­age ap­peared on Nazi post­cards, and she was even recog­nised by an aunt in Lithua­nia.

The Nazis never dis­cov­ered Ms Taft’s true iden­tity de­spite her par­ents’ fears.

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