KARL HEINZ HANSEN, Mit der APOLLO, 1969

mit-der-apollo

From the last radical left wing record to a pretty much right wing record. I picked it up years ago just for the cartoon on the cover. When I came home I realized, that it was drawn by ZEL, short for Hans Joachim StenZEL, once one of the most popular Berlin cartoonists. For decades he did daily cartoons for the Berliner Zeitung and the Berliner Morgenpost, the biggest local newspapers.

Above: (Bathing Venus ) “Cool Chick, huh?”

ZEL was born in Louisville,Kentucky in 1923 but his parents, native Berliners returned to Germany shortly after. By the late sixties, when this record came out on the small local Kaskade-Schallplatten record label, he was already in his forties. So he wasn`t exactly hip with the times. Just like a lot of older people he saw the younger generation as a threat to order and expressed that in a lot of his cartoons.

Not only had he done the cover of this record but he also wrote the lyrics. The song is combining the two, at the time, most topical issues: the marxist student union APO (Außer Parlamentarische Opposition) that was rallying in the universities and the APOLLO flight to the Moon. In the song it says: “Who belongs on the Moon? The APO-, APOLLO! Who will not be spared? The APO-, APOLLO!”

Stenzel was certainly expressing the feelings of the average people, who wished the anarchists and long-haired hippies to the moon. But songs and cartoons like this also created a general atmosphere of hatred and disgust towards those “dirty filthy radicals”. People with long hair were chased and beaten regularly. This situation eventually lead to the shooting of the student Benno Ohnesorg in a demonstration against the Persian Shah in the summer of 1967 and the attempted murder of student leader Rudi Dutschke in 1968. Radical students of the underground paper Linkeck used Stenzels depictions of students in reverse on postcards. Stenzel sued for copyright infringement. Linkeck labeled him  a fascist. Hans Joachim StenzelL died in 1999.



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