The modern convention of moving the Olympic Flame via a relay system from Greece to the Olympic venue began in 1936. Carl Diem devised the idea of the torch relay for the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin that was organized by the Nazis under the guidance of Joseph Goebbels. Krupp armaments company produced the torches in wood and metal, inspired by an olive leaf. The Olympic Flame was lit by a concave mirror in Olympia, Greece and transported over 3,187 kilometres by 3,331 runners in twelve days and eleven nights from Greece to Berlin. Leni Riefenstahl later staged the torch relay for the 1938 film Olympia. The film was part of the Nazi propaganda machine’s attempt to add myth and mystique to Adolf Hitler’s regime. Hitler saw the link with the ancient Games as the perfect way to illustrate his belief that classical Greece was an Aryan forerunner of the modern German Reich.
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