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> PART TWO
tanith
post Feb 20 2011, 02:18 PM
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Volume Two - The National Socialist Movement

Chapter I: Philosophy and Party

On February 24th, 1920, the first great mass meeting under the auspices of the new movement took place. In the Banquet Hall of the Hofbräuhaus in Munich the twenty-five theses which constituted the programme of our new party were expounded to an audience of nearly two thousand people and each thesis was enthusiastically received.
Thus we brought to the knowledge of the public those first principles and lines of action along which the new struggle was to be conducted for the abolition of a confused mass of obsolete ideas and opinions which had obscure and often pernicious tendencies. A new force was to make its appearance among the timid and feckless bourgeoisie. This force was destined to impede the triumphant advance of the Marxists and bring the Chariot of Fate to a standstill just as it seemed about to reach its goal.
It was evident that this new movement could gain the public significance and support which are necessary pre-requisites in such a gigantic struggle only if it succeeded from the very outset in awakening a sacrosanct conviction in the hearts of its followers, that here it was not a case of introducing a new electoral slogan into the political field but that an entirely new world view, which was of a radical significance, had to be promoted.
One must try to recall the miserable jumble of opinions that used to be arrayed side by side to form the usual Party Programme, as it was called, and one must remember how these opinions used to be brushed up or dressed in a new form from time to time. If we would properly understand these programmatic monstrosities we must carefully investigate the motives which inspired the average bourgeois 'programme committee'.
Those people are always influenced by one and the same preoccupation when they introduce something new into their programme or modify something already contained in it. That preoccupation is directed towards the results of the next election. The moment these artists in parliamentary government have the first glimmering of a suspicion that their darling public may be ready to kick up its heels and escape from the harness of the old party wagon they begin to paint the shafts with new colours. On such occasions the party astrologists and horoscope readers, the so-called 'experienced men' and 'experts', come forward. For the most part they are old parliamentary hands whose political schooling has furnished them with ample experience. They can remember former occasions when the masses showed signs of losing patience and they now diagnose the menace of a similar situation arising. Resorting to their old prescription, they form a 'committee'. They go around among the darling public and listen to what is being said. They dip their noses into the newspapers and gradually begin to scent what it is that their darlings, the broad masses, are wishing for, what they reject and what they are hoping for. The groups that belong to each trade or business, and even office employees, are carefully studied and their innermost desires are investigated. The 'malicious slogans' of the opposition from which danger is threatened are now suddenly looked upon as worthy of reconsideration, and it often happens that these slogans, to the great astonishment of those who originally coined and circulated them, now appear to be quite harmless and indeed are to be found among the dogmas of the old parties.
So the committees meet to revise the old programme and draw up a new one.
For these people change their convictions just as the soldier changes his shirt in war – when the old one is bug-eaten. In the new programme everyone gets everything he wants. The farmer is assured that the interests of agriculture will be safeguarded. The industrialist is assured of protection for his products. The consumer is assured that his interests will be protected in the market prices. Teachers are given higher salaries and civil servants will have better pensions. Widows and orphans will receive generous assistance from the State. Trade will be promoted. The tariff will be lowered and even the taxes, though they cannot be entirely abolished, will be almost abolished. It sometimes happens that one section of the public is forgotten or that one of the demands mooted among the public has not reached the ears of the party. This is also hurriedly patched on to the whole, should there be any space available for it: until finally it is felt that there are good grounds for hoping that the whole normal host of philistines, including their wives, will have their anxieties laid to rest and will beam with satisfaction once again. And so, internally armed with faith in the goodness of God and the impenetrable stupidity of the electorate, the struggle for what is called 'the reconstruction of the Reich' can now begin.
When the election day is over and the parliamentarians have held their last public meeting for the next five years, when they can leave their job of getting the populace to toe the line and can now devote themselves to higher and more pleasing tasks – then the programme committee is dissolved and the struggle for the progressive reorganization of public affairs becomes once again a business of earning one's daily bread, which for the parliamentarians means merely the attendance that is required in order to be able to draw their daily remunerations. Morning after morning the honourable deputy wends his way to the House, and though he may not enter the Chamber itself he gets at least as far as the front hall, where he will find the register on which the names of the deputies in attendance have to be inscribed. As a part of his onerous service to his constituents he enters his name, and in return receives a small indemnity as a well-earned reward for his unceasing and exhausting labours.
When four years have passed, or in the meantime if there should be some critical weeks during which the parliamentary corporations have to face the danger of being dissolved, these honourable gentlemen become suddenly seized by an irresistible desire to act. Just as the grub-worm cannot help growing into a cock-chafer, these parliamentarian worms leave the great House of Puppets and flutter on new wings out among the beloved public. They address the electors once again, give an account of the enormous labours they have accomplished and emphasize the malicious obstinacy of their opponents. They do not always meet with grateful applause; for occasionally the unintelligent masses throw rude and unfriendly remarks in their faces. When this spirit of public ingratitude reaches a certain pitch there is only one way of saving the situation. The prestige of the party must be burnished up again. The programme has to be amended. The committee is called into existence once again. And the swindle begins anew. Once we understand the impenetrable stupidity of our public we cannot be surprised that such tactics turn out successful. Led by the Press and blinded once again by the alluring appearance of the new programme, the bourgeois as well as the proletarian herds of voters faithfully return to the common stall and re-elect their old deceivers. The 'people's man' and labour candidate now change back again into the parliamentarian grub and become fat and rotund as they batten on the leaves that grow on the tree of public life – to be retransformed into the glittering butterfly after another four years have passed.
Scarcely anything else can be so depressing as to watch this process in sober reality and to be the eyewitness of this repeatedly recurring fraud. On a spiritual training ground of that kind it is not possible for the bourgeois forces to develop the strength which is necessary to carry on the fight against the organized might of Marxism. Indeed they have never seriously thought of doing so. Though these parliamentary quacks who represent the white race are generally recognized as persons of quite inferior mental capacity, they are shrewd enough to know that they could not seriously entertain the hope of being able to use the weapon of Western Democracy to fight a doctrine for the advance of which Western Democracy, with all its accessories, is employed as a means to an end. Democracy is exploited by the Marxists for the purpose of paralysing their opponents and gaining for themselves a free hand to put their own methods into action. When certain groups of Marxists use all their ingenuity for the time being to make it be believed that they are inseparably attached to the principles of democracy, it may be well to recall the fact that when critical occasions arose these same gentlemen snapped their fingers at the principle of decision by majority vote, as that principle is understood by Western Democracy. Such was the case in those days when the bourgeois parliamentarians, in their monumental shortsightedness, believed that the security of the Reich was guaranteed because it had an overwhelming numerical majority in its favour, and the Marxists did not hesitate suddenly to grasp supreme power in their own hands, backed by a mob of loafers, deserters, political place-hunters and Jewish dilettanti. That was a blow in the face for that democracy in which so many parliamentarians believed. Only those credulous parliamentary wizards who represented bourgeois democracy could have believed that the brutal determination of those whose interest it is to spread the Marxist world-pest, of which they are the carriers, could for a moment, now or in the future, be held in check by the magical formulas of Western Parliamentarianism. Marxism will march shoulder to shoulder with democracy until it succeeds indirectly in securing for its own criminal purposes even the support of those whose minds are nationally orientated and whom Marxism strives to exterminate. But if the Marxists should one day come to believe that there was a danger that from this witch's cauldron of our parliamentary democracy a majority vote might be concocted, which by reason of its numerical majority would be empowered to enact legislation and might use that power seriously to combat Marxism, then the whole parliamentarian hocus-pocus would be at an end. Instead of appealing to the democratic conscience, the standard bearers of the Red International would immediately send forth a furious rallying-cry among the proletarian masses and the ensuing fight would not take place in the sedate atmosphere of Parliament but in the factories and the streets. Then democracy would be annihilated forthwith. And what the intellectual prowess of the apostles who represented the people in Parliament had failed to accomplish would now be successfully carried out by the crow-bar and the sledge-hammer of the exasperated proletarian masses – just as in the autumn of 1918. At a blow they would awaken the bourgeois world to see the madness of thinking that the Jewish drive towards world-conquest can be effectually opposed by means of Western Democracy.
As I have said, only a very credulous soul could think of binding himself to observe the rules of the game when he has to face a player for whom those rules are nothing but a mere bluff or a means of serving his own interests, which means he will discard them when they prove no longer useful for his purpose.
All the parties that profess so-called bourgeois principles look upon political life as in reality a struggle for seats in Parliament. The moment their principles and convictions are of no further use in that struggle they are thrown overboard, as if they were sand ballast. And the programmes are constructed in such a way that they can be dealt with in like manner. But such practice has a correspondingly weakening effect on the strength of those parties. They lack the great magnetic force which alone attracts the broad masses; for these masses always respond to the compelling force which emanates from absolute faith in the ideas put forward, combined with an indomitable zest to fight for and defend them.
At a time in which the one side, armed with all the fighting power that springs from a systematic conception of life – even though it be criminal in a thousand ways – makes an attack against the established order the other side will be able to resist when it draws its strength from a new faith, which in our case is a political faith. This faith must supersede the weak and cowardly command to defend. In its stead we must raise the battle-cry of a courageous and ruthless attack. Our present movement is accused, especially by the so-called national bourgeois cabinet ministers – the Bavarian representatives of the Centre, for example – of heading towards a revolution. We have one answer to give to those political pigmies. We say to them: We are trying to make up for that which you, in your criminal stupidity, have failed to carry out. By your parliamentarian jobbing you have helped to drag the nation into ruin. But we, by our aggressive policy, are setting up a new philosophy of life which we shall defend with indomitable devotion. Thus we are building the steps on which our nation once again may ascend to the temple of freedom.
And so during the first stages of founding our movement we had to take special care that our militant group which fought for the establishment of a new and exalted political faith should not degenerate into a society for the promotion of parliamentarian interests.
The first preventive measure was to lay down a programme which of itself would tend towards developing a certain moral greatness that would scare away all the petty and weakling spirits who make up the bulk of our present party politicians.
Those fatal defects which finally led to Germany's downfall afford the clearest proof of how right we were in considering it absolutely necessary to set up programmatic aims which were sharply and distinctly defined.
Because we recognized the defects above mentioned, we realized that a new conception of the State had to be formed, which in itself became a part of our new conception of life in general.
In the first volume of this book I have already dealt with the term völkisch, and I said then that this term has not a sufficiently precise meaning to furnish the kernel around which a closely consolidated militant community could be formed. All kinds of people, with all kinds of divergent opinions, are parading about at the present moment under the device völkisch on their banners. Before I come to deal with the purposes and aims of the National Socialist Labour Party I want to establish a clear understanding of what is meant by the concept völkisch and herewith explain its relation to our party movement. The word völkisch does not express any clearly specified idea. It may be interpreted in several ways and in practical application it is just as general as the word 'religious', for instance. It is difficult to attach any precise meaning to this latter word, either as a theoretical concept or as a guiding principle in practical life. The word 'religious' acquires a precise meaning only when it is associated with a distinct and definite form through which the concept is put into practice. To say that a person is 'deeply religious' may be very fine phraseology; but, generally speaking, it tells us little or nothing. There may be some few people who are content with such a vague description and there may even be some to whom the word conveys a more or less definite picture of the inner quality of a person thus described. But, since the masses of the people are not composed of philosophers or saints, such a vague religious idea will mean for them nothing else than to justify each individual in thinking and acting according to his own bent. It will not lead to that practical faith into which the inner religious yearning is transformed only when it leaves the sphere of general metaphysical ideas and is moulded to a definite dogmatic belief. Such a belief is certainly not an end in itself, but the means to an end. Yet it is a means without which the end could never be reached at all. This end, however, is not merely something ideal; for at the bottom it is eminently practical. We must always bear in mind the fact that, generally speaking, the highest ideals are always the outcome of some profound vital need, just as the most sublime beauty owes its nobility of shape, in the last analysis, to the fact that the most beautiful form is the form that is best suited to the purpose it is meant to serve.
By helping to lift the human being above the level of mere animal existence, Faith really contributes to consolidate and safeguard its own existence. Taking humanity as it exists today and taking into consideration the fact that the religious beliefs which it generally holds and which have been consolidated through our education, so that they serve as moral standards in practical life, if we should now abolish religious teaching and not replace it by anything of equal value the result would be that the foundations of human existence would be seriously shaken. We may safely say that man does not live merely to serve higher ideals, but that these ideals, in their turn, furnish the necessary conditions of his existence as a human being. And thus the circle is closed.
Of course, the word 'religious' implies some ideas and beliefs that are fundamental. Among these we may reckon the belief in the immortality of the soul, its future existence in eternity, the belief in the existence of a Higher Being, and so on. But all these ideas, no matter how firmly the individual believes in them, may be critically analysed by any person and accepted or rejected accordingly, until the emotional concept or yearning has been transformed into an active service that is governed by a clearly defined doctrinal faith. Such a faith furnishes the practical outlet for religious feeling to express itself and thus opens the way through which it can be put into practice.
Without a clearly defined belief, the religious feeling would not only be worthless for the purposes of human existence but even might contribute towards a general disorganization, on account of its vague and multifarious tendencies.
What I have said about the word 'religious' can also be applied to the term völkisch. This word also implies certain fundamental ideas. Though these ideas are very important indeed, they assume such vague and indefinite forms that they cannot be estimated as having a greater value than mere opinions, until they become constituent elements in the structure of a political party. For in order to give practical force to the ideals that grow out of philosophical ideals and to answer the demands which are a logical consequence of such ideals, mere sentiment and inner longing are of no practical assistance, just as freedom cannot be won by a universal yearning for it. No. Only when the idealistic longing for independence is organized in such a way that it can fight for its ideal with military force, only then can the urgent wish of a people be transformed into a potent reality.
Every philosophy of life, even if it is a thousand times correct and of the highest benefit to mankind, will be of no practical service for the maintenance of a people as long as its principles have not yet become the rallying point of a militant movement. And, on its own side, this movement will remain a mere party until is has brought its ideals to victory and transformed its party doctrines into the new foundations of a State which gives the national community its final shape.
If an abstract conception of a general nature is to serve as the basis of a future development, then the first prerequisite is to form a clear understanding of the nature and character and scope of this conception. For only on such a basis can a movement he founded which will be able to draw the necessary fighting strength from the internal cohesion of its principles and convictions. From general ideas a political programme must be constructed and general ideas must receive the stamp of a definite political faith. Since this faith must be directed towards ends that have to be attained in the world of practical reality, not only must it serve the general ideal as such but it must also take into consideration the means that have to be employed for the triumph of the ideal. Here the practical wisdom of the statesman must come to the assistance of the abstract idea, which is correct in itself. In that way an eternal ideal, which has everlasting significance as a guiding star to mankind, must be adapted to the exigencies of human frailty so that its practical effect may not be frustrated at the very outset through those shortcomings which are general to mankind. The exponent of truth must here go hand in hand with him who has a practical knowledge of the soul of the people, so that from the realm of eternal verities and ideals what is suited to the capacities of human nature may be selected and given practical form.
To take abstract and general principles, derived from a philosophy which is based on a solid foundation of truth, and transform them into a militant community whose members have the same political faith – a community which is precisely defined, rigidly organized, of one mind and one will – such a transformation is the most important task of all; for the possibility of successfully carrying out the idea is dependent on the successful fulfilment of that task. Out of the army of millions who feel the truth of these ideas, and even may understand them to some extent, one man must arise. This man must have the gift of being able to expound general ideas in a clear and definite form, and, from the world of vague ideas shimmering before the minds of the masses, he must formulate principles that will be as clear-cut and firm as granite. He must fight for these principles as the only true ones, until a solid rock of common faith and common will emerges above the troubled waves of vagrant ideas.
The general justification of such action is to be sought in the necessity for it and the individual will be justified by his success.
If we try to penetrate to the inner meaning of the word völkisch we arrive at the following conclusions:
The current political conception of the world is that the State, though it possesses a creative force which can build up civilizations, has nothing in common with the concept of race as the foundation of the State. The State is considered rather as something which has resulted from economic necessity, or, at best, the natural outcome of the play of political forces and impulses. Such a conception of the foundations of the State, together with all its logical consequences, not only ignores the primordial racial forces that underlie the State, but it also leads to a policy in which the importance of the individual is minimized. If it be denied that races differ from one another in their powers of cultural creativeness, then this same erroneous notion must necessarily influence our estimation of the value of the individual. The assumption that all races are alike leads to the assumption that nations and individuals are equal to one another. And international Marxism is nothing but the application – effected by the Jew, Karl Marx – of a general conception of life to a definite profession of political faith; but in reality that general concept had existed long before the time of Karl Marx. If it had not already existed as a widely diffused infection the amazing political progress of the Marxist teaching would never have been possible. In reality what distinguished Karl Marx from the millions who were affected in the same way was that, in a world already in a state of gradual decomposition, he used his keen powers of prognosis to detect the essential poisons, so as to extract them and concentrate them, with the art of a necromancer, in a solution which would bring about the rapid destruction of the independent nations on the globe. But all this was done in the service of his race.
Thus the Marxist doctrine is the concentrated extract of the mentality which underlies the general concept of life today. For this reason alone it is out of the question and even ridiculous to think that what is called our bourgeois world can put up any effective fight against Marxism. For this bourgeois world is permeated with all those same poisons and its conception of life in general differs from Marxism only in degree and in the character of the persons who hold it. The bourgeois world is Marxist but believes in the possibility of a certain group of people – that is to say, the bourgeoisie – being able to dominate the world, while Marxism itself systematically aims at delivering the world into the hands of the Jews.
Over against all this, the völkisch concept of the world recognizes that the primordial racial elements are of the greatest significance for mankind. In principle, the State is looked upon only as a means to an end and this end is the conservation of the racial characteristics of mankind. Therefore on the völkisch principle we cannot admit that one race is equal to another. By recognizing that they are different, the völkisch concept separates mankind into races of superior and inferior quality. On the basis of this recognition it feels bound in conformity with the eternal Will that dominates the universe, to postulate the victory of the better and stronger and the subordination of the inferior and weaker. And so it pays homage to the truth that the principle underlying all Nature's operations is the aristocratic principle and it believes that this law holds good even down to the last individual organism. It selects individual values from the mass and thus operates as an organizing principle, whereas Marxism acts as a disintegrating solvent. The völkisch belief holds that humanity must have its ideals, because ideals are a necessary condition of human existence itself. But, on the other hand, it denies that an ethical ideal has the right to prevail if it endangers the existence of a race that is the standard-bearer of a higher ethical ideal. For in a world which would be composed of mongrels and negroids all ideals of human beauty and nobility and all hopes of an idealized future for our humanity would be lost forever.
On this planet of ours human culture and civilization are indissolubly bound up with the presence of the Aryan. If he should be exterminated or subjugated, then the dark shroud of a new barbarian era would enfold the earth.
To undermine the existence of human culture by exterminating its founders and custodians would be an execrable crime in the eyes of those who believe that the folk-idea lies at the basis of human existence. Whoever would dare to raise a profane hand against that highest image of God among His creatures would sin against the bountiful Creator of this marvel and would collaborate in the expulsion from Paradise.
Hence the folk concept of the world is in profound accord with Nature's will; because it restores the free play of the forces which will lead the race through stages of sustained reciprocal education towards a higher type, until finally the best portion of mankind will possess the earth and will be free to work in every domain all over the world and even reach spheres that lie outside the earth.
We all feel that in the distant future many may be faced with problems which can be solved only by a superior race of human beings, a race destined to become master of all the other peoples and which will have at its disposal the means and resources of the whole world.
It is self-evident that so general a statement of the meaningful content of a folkish philosophy can be easily interpreted in a thousand different ways. As a matter of fact there is scarcely one of our recent political movements that does not refer at some point to this conception of the world. But the fact that this conception of the world still maintains its independent existence in face of all the others proves that their ways of looking at life are quite difierent from this. Thus the Marxist conception, directed by a central organization endowed with supreme authority, is opposed by a motley crew of opinions which is not very impressive in face of the solid phalanx presented by the enemy. Victory cannot be achieved with such weak weapons. Only when the international idea, politically organized by Marxism, is confronted by the folk idea, equally well organized in a systematic way and equally well led – only then will the fighting energy in the one camp be able to meet that of the other on an equal footing; and victory will be found on the side of eternal truth.
But a general conception of life can never be given an organic embodiment until it is precisely and definitely formulated. The function which dogma fulfils in religious belief is parallel to the function which party principles fulfil for a political party which is in the process of being built up.
Therefore, for the conception of life that is based on the folk idea it is necessary that an instrument be forged which can be used in fighting for this ideal, similar to the Marxist party organization which clears the way for internationalism.
This is the goal pursued by the National Socialist German Workers' Party.
The folk conception must therefore be definitely formulated so that it may be organically incorporated in the party. That is a necessary prerequisite for the success of this idea. And that it is so is very clearly proved even by the indirect acknowledgment of those who oppose such an amalgamation of the folk idea with party principles. The very people who never tire of insisting again and again that the conception of life based on the folk idea can never be the exclusive property of a single group, because it lies dormant or 'lives' in myriads of hearts, only confirm by their own statements the simple fact that the general presence of such ideas in the hearts of millions of men has not proved sufficient to impede the victory of the opposing ideas, which are championed by a political party organized on the principle of class conflict. If that were not so, the German people ought already to have gained a gigantic victory instead of finding themselves on the brink of the abyss. The international ideology achieved success because it was organized in a militant political party which was always ready to take the offensive. If hitherto the ideas opposed to the international concept have had to give way before the latter the reason is that they lacked a united front to fight for their cause. A doctrine which forms a definite outlook on life cannot struggle and triumph by allowing the right of free interpretation of its general teaching, but only by defining that teaching in certain articles of faith that have to be accepted and incorporating it in a political organization.
Therefore I considered it my special duty to extract from the extensive but vague contents of a general world view the ideas which were essential and give them a more or less dogmatic form. Because of their precise and clear meaning, these ideas are suited to the purpose of uniting in a common front all those who are ready to accept them as principles. In other words: The National Socialist German Workers' Party extracts the essential principles from the general conception of the world which is based on the folk idea. On these principles it establishes a political doctrine which takes into account the practical realities of the day, the nature of the times, the available human material and all its deficiencies. Through this political doctrine it is possible to bring great masses of the people into an organization which is constructed as rigidly as it could be. Such an organization is the main preliminary that is necessary for the final triumph of this world view.


Chapter II: The State

By 1920-1921 certain circles belonging to the present outlived bourgeois class accused our movement again and again of taking up a negative attitude towards the modern State. For that reason the motley gang of camp followers attached to the various political parties, representing a heterogeneous conglomeration of political views, assumed the right of utilizing all available means to suppress the protagonists of this young movement which was preaching a new political gospel. Our opponents deliberately ignored the fact that the bourgeois class itself stood for no uniform opinion as to what the State really meant and that the bourgeoisie did not and could not give any coherent definition of this institution. Those whose duty it is to explain what is meant when we speak of the State, hold chairs in State universities, often in the department of constitutional law, and consider it their highest duty to find explanations and justifications for the more or less fortunate existence of that particular form of State which provides them with their daily bread. The more absurd such a form of State is the more obscure and artificial and incomprehensible are the definitions which are advanced to explain the purpose of its existence. What, for instance, could a royal and imperial university professor write about the meaning and purpose of a State in a country whose statal form represented the greatest monstrosity of the twentieth century? That would be a difficult undertaking indeed, in view of the fact that the contemporary professor of constitutional law is obliged not so much to serve the cause of truth but rather to serve a certain definite purpose. And this purpose is to defend at all costs the existence of that monstrous human mechanism which we now call the State. Nobody can be surprised if concrete facts are evaded as far as possible when the problem of the State is under discussion and if professors adopt the tactics of concealing themselves in morass of abstract values and duties and purposes which are described as 'ethical' and 'moral'.
Generally speaking, these various theorists may be classed in three groups:
1. Those who hold that the State is a more or less voluntary association of men who have agreed to set up and obey a ruling authority.
This is numerically the largest group. In its ranks are to be found those who worship our present principle of legalized authority. In their eyes the will of the people has no part whatever in the whole affair. For them the fact that the State exists is sufficient reason to consider it sacred and inviolable. To protect the madness of human brains, a positively dog-like adoration of so-called state authority is needed. In the minds of these people the means is substituted for the end, by a sort of sleight-of-hand movement. The State no longer exists for the purpose of serving men but men exist for the purpose of adoring the authority of the State, which is vested in its functionaries, even down to the smallest official. So as to prevent this placid and ecstatic adoration from changing into something that might become in any way disturbing, the authority of the State is limited simply to the task of preserving order and tranquillity. Therewith it is no longer either a means or an end. The State must see that public peace and order are preserved and, in their turn, order and peace must make the existence of the State possible. All life must move between these two poles. In Bavaria this view is upheld by the artful politicians of the Bavarian Centre, which is called the 'Bavarian Populist Party'. In Austria the Black-and-Yellow legitimists adopt a similar attitude. In the Reich, unfortunately, the so-called conservative elements follow the same line of thought.
2. The second group is somewhat smaller in numbers. It includes those who would make the existence of the State dependent on some conditions at least. They insist that not only should there be a uniform system of government but also, if possible, that only one language should be used, though solely for technical reasons of administration. In this view the authority of the State is no longer the sole and exclusive end for which the State exists. It must also promote the good of its subjects. Ideas of 'freedom', mostly based on a misunderstanding of the meaning of that word, enter into the concept of the State as it exists in the minds of this group. The form of government is no longer considered inviolable simply because it exists. It must submit to the test of practical efficiency. Its venerable age no longer protects it from being criticized in the light of modern exigencies. Moreover, in this view the first duty laid upon the State is to guarantee the economic well-being of the individual citizens. Hence it is judged from the practical standpoint and according to general principles based on the idea of economic returns. The chief representatives of this theory of the State are to be found among the average German bourgeoisie, especially our liberal democrats.
3. The third group is numerically the smallest. In the State they discover a means for the realization of tendencies that arise from a policy of power, on the part of a people who are ethnically homogeneous and speak the same language. But those who hold this view are not clear about what they mean by 'tendencies arising from a policy of power'. A common language is postulated not only because they hope that thereby the State would be furnished with a solid basis for the extension of its power outside its own frontiers, but also because they think – though falling into a fundamental error by doing so – that such a common language would enable them to carry out a process of nationalization in a definite direction.
During the last century it was lamentable for those who had to witness it, to notice how in these circles I have just mentioned the word 'Germanize' was frivolously played with, though the practice was often well intended. I well remember how in the days of my youth this very term used to give rise to notions which were false to an incredible degree. Even in Pan-German circles one heard the opinion expressed that the Austrian Germans might very well succeed in Germanizing the Austrian Slavs, if only the Government would be ready to co-operate. Those people did not understand that a policy of Germanization can be carried out only as regards human beings. What they mostly meant by Germanization was a process of forcing other people to speak the German language. But it is almost inconceivable how such a mistake could be made as to think that a Negro or a Chinaman will become a German because he has learned the German language and is willing to speak German for the future, and even to cast his vote for a German political party. Our bourgeois nationalists could never clearly see that such a process of Germanization is in reality de-Germanization; for even if all the outstanding and visible differences between the various peoples could be bridged over and finally wiped out by the use of a common language, that would produce a process of bastardization which in this case would not signify Germanization but the annihilation of the German element. In the course of history it has happened only too often that a conquering race succeeded by external force in compelling the people whom they subjected to speak the tongue of the conqueror and that after a thousand years their language was spoken by another people and that thus the conqueror finally turned out to be the conquered.
What makes a people or, to be more correct, a race, is not language but blood. Therefore it would be justifiable to speak of Germanization only if that process could change the blood of the people who would be subjected to it, which is obviously impossible. A change would be possible only by a mixture of blood, but in this case the quality of the superior race would be debased. The final result of such a mixture would be that precisely those qualities would be destroyed which had enabled the conquering race to achieve victory over an inferior people. It is especially the cultural creativeness which disappears when a superior race intermixes with an inferior one, even though the resultant mongrel race should excel a thousandfold in speaking the language of the race that once had been superior. For a certain time there will be a conflict between the different mentalities, and it may be that a nation which is in a state of progressive degeneration will at the last moment rally its cultural creative power and once again produce striking examples of that power. But these results are due only to the activity of elements that have remained over from the superior race or hybrids of the first crossing in whom the superior blood has remained dominant and seeks to assert itself. But this will never happen with the final descendants of such hybrids. These are always in a state of cultural retrogression.
We must consider it as fortunate that a Germanization of Austria according to the plan of Joseph II did not succeed. Probably the result would have been that the Austrian State would have been able to survive, but at the same time participation in the use of a common language would have debased the racial quality of the German element. In the course of centuries a certain herd instinct might have been developed but the herd itself would have deteriorated in quality. A national State might have arisen, but a people who had been culturally creative would have disappeared.
For the German nation it was better that this process of intermixture did not take place, although it was not renounced for any high-minded reasons but simply through the short-sighted pettiness of the Habsburgs. If it had taken place the German people could not now be looked upon as a cultural factor.
Not only in Austria, however, but also in the Reich, these so-called national circles were, and still are, under the influence of similar erroneous ideas. Unfortunately, a policy towards Poland, whereby the East was to be Germanized, was demanded by many and was based on the same false reasoning. Here again it was believed that the Polish people could be Germanized by being compelled to use the German language. The result would have been fatal. A people of foreign race would have had to use the German language to express modes of thought that were foreign to the German, thus compromising by its own inferiority the dignity and nobility of our nation.
It is revolting to think how much damage is indirectly done to German prestige today through the fact that the German patois of the Jews when they enter the United States enables them to be classed as Germans, because many Americans are quite ignorant of German conditions. Among us, nobody would think of taking these unhygienic immigrants from the East for members of the German race and nation merely because they mostly speak German.
What has been beneficially Germanized in the course of history was the land which our ancestors conquered with the sword and colonized with German tillers of the soil. To the extent that they introduced foreign blood into our national body in this colonization, they have helped to disintegrate our racial character, a process which has resulted in our German hyper-individualism, though this latter characteristic is even now frequently praised.
In this third group also there are people who, to a certain degree, consider the State as an end in itself. Hence they consider its preservation as one of the highest aims of human existence. Our analysis may be summed up as follows:
All these opinions have this common feature and failing: that they are not grounded in a recognition of the profound truth that the capacity for creating cultural values is essentially based on the racial element and that, in accordance with this fact, the paramount purpose of the State is to preserve and improve the race; for this is an indispensable condition of all progress in human civilization.
Thus the Jew, Karl Marx, was able to draw the final conclusions from these false concepts and ideas on the nature and purpose of the State. By eliminating from the concept of the State all thought of the obligation which the State bears towards the race, without finding any other formula that might be universally accepted, the bourgeois teaching prepared the way for that doctrine which rejects the State as such.
That is why the bourgeois struggle against Marxist internationalism is absolutely doomed to fail in this field. The bourgeois classes have already sacrificed the basic principles which alone could furnish a solid footing for their ideas. Their crafty opponent has perceived the defects in their structure and advances to the assault on it with those weapons which they themselves have placed in his hands though not meaning to do so.
Therefore any new movement which is based on the racial concept of the world will first of all have to put forward a clear and logical doctrine of the nature and purpose of the State.
The fundamental principle is that the State is not an end in itself but the means to an end. It is the preliminary condition under which alone a higher form of human civilization can be developed, but it is not the source of such a development. This is to be sought exclusively in the actual existence of a race which is endowed with the gift of cultural creativeness. There may be hundreds of excellent States on this earth, and yet if the Aryan, who is the creator and custodian of civilization, should disappear, all culture that is on an adequate level with the spiritual needs of the superior nations today would also disappear. We may go still further and say that the fact that States have been created by human beings does not in the least exclude the possiblity that the human race may become extinct, because the superior intellectual faculties and powers of adaptation would be lost when the racial bearer of these faculties and powers disappeared.
If, for instance, the surface of the globe should be shaken today by some seismic convulsion and if a new Himalaya would emerge from the waves of the sea, this one catastrophe alone might annihilate human civilization. No State could exist any longer. All order would be shattered. And all vestiges of cultural products which had been evolved through thousands of years would disappear. Nothing would be left but one tremendous field of death and destruction submerged in floods of water and mud. If, however, just a few people would survive this terrible havoc, and if these people belonged to a definite race that had the innate powers to build up a civilization, when the commotion had passed, the earth would again bear witness to the creative power of the human spirit, even though a span of a thousand years might intervene. Only with the extermination of the last race that possesses the gift of cultural creativeness, and indeed only if all the individuals of that race had disappeared, would the earth definitely be turned into a desert. On the other hand, modern history furnishes examples to show that statal institutions which owe their beginnings to members of a race which lacks creative genius are not made of stuff that will endure. Just as many varieties of prehistoric animals had to give way to others and leave no trace behind them, so man will also have to give way, if he loses that definite faculty which enables him to find the weapons that are necessary for him to maintain his own existence.
It is not the State as such that brings about a certain definite advance in cultural progress. The State can only protect the race that is the cause of such progress. The State as such may well exist without undergoing any change for hundreds of years, though the cultural faculties and the general life of the people, which is shaped by these faculties, may have suffered profound changes by reason of the fact that the State did not prevent a process of racial mixture from taking place. The present State, for instance, may continue to exist in a mere mechanical form, but the poison of miscegenation permeating the national body brings about a cultural decadence which manifests itself already in various symptoms that are of a detrimental character.
Thus the indispensable prerequisite for the existence of a superior quality of human beings is not the State but the race, which is alone capable of producing that higher human quality.
This capacity is always there, though it will lie dormant unless external circumstances awaken it to action. Nations, or rather races, which are endowed with the faculty of cultural creativeness possess this faculty in a latent form during periods when the external circumstances are unfavourable for the time being and therefore do not allow the faculty to express itself effectively. It is therefore outrageously unjust to speak of the pre-Christian Germans as barbarians who had no civilization. They never have been such. But the severity of the climate that prevailed in the northern regions which they inhabited imposed conditions of life which hampered a free development of their creative faculties. If they had come to the fairer climate of the South, with no previous culture whatsoever, and if they acquired the necessary human material – that is to say, men of an inferior race – to serve them as working implements, the cultural faculty dormant in them would have splendidly blossomed forth, as happened in the case of the Greeks, for example. But this primordial creative faculty in cultural things was not solely due to their northern climate. For the Laplanders or the Eskimos would not have become creators of a culture if they were transplanted to the South. No, this wonderful creative faculty is a special gift bestowed on the Aryan, whether it lies dormant in him or becomes active, according as the adverse conditions of nature prevent the active expression of that faculty or favourable circumstances permit it.
From these facts the following conclusions may be drawn:
The State is only a means to an end. Its end and its purpose is to preserve and promote a community of human beings who are physically as well as spiritually kindred. Above all, it must preserve the existence of the race, thereby providing the indispensable condition for the free development of all the forces dormant in this race. A great part of these faculties will always have to be employed in the first place to maintain the physical existence of the race, and only a small portion will be free to work in the field of intellectual progress. But, as a matter of fact, the one is always the necessary counterpart of the other.
Those States which do not serve this purpose have no justification for their existence. They are monstrosities. The fact that they do exist is no more of a justification than the successful raids carried out by a band of pirates can be considered a justification of piracy.
We National Socialists, who are fighting for a new philosophy of life must never take our stand on the famous 'basis of facts', and especially not on mistaken facts. If we did so, we should cease to be the protagonists of a new and great idea and would become slaves in the service of the fallacy which is dominant today. We must make a clear-cut distinction between the vessel and its contents. The State is only the vessel and the race is what it contains. The vessel can have a meaning only if it preserves and safeguards the contents. Otherwise it is worthless.
Hence the supreme purpose of the folkish State is to guard and preserve those original racial elements which, through their work in the cultural field, create that beauty and dignity which are characteristic of a higher mankind. We, as Aryans, can consider the State only as the living organism of a people, an organism which does not merely maintain the existence of a people, but functions in such a way as to lead its people to a position of supreme liberty by the progressive development of the intellectual and cultural faculties.
What they want to impose upon us as a State today is in most cases nothing but a monstrosity, the product of a profound human aberration which brings untold suffering in its train.
We National Socialists know that in holding these views we take up a revolutionary stand in the world of today and that we are branded as revolutionaries. But our views and our conduct will not be determined by the approbation or disapprobation of our contemporaries, but only by our duty to follow a truth which we have acknowledged. In doing this we have reason to believe that posterity will have a clearer insight, and will not only understand the work we are doing today, but will also ratify it as the right work and will exalt it accordingly.
On these principles we National Socialists base our standards of value in appraising a State. This value will be relative when viewed from the particular standpoint of the individual nation, but it will be absolute when considered from the standpoint of humanity as a whole. In other words, this means:
The quality of a State can never be judged by the level of its culture or the degree of importance which the outside world attaches to its power, but that its excellence must be judged by the degree to which its institutions serve the racial stock which belongs to it.
A State may be considered as a model example if it adequately serves not only the vital needs of the racial stock it represents but if it actually assures by its own existence the preservation of this same racial stock, no matter what general cultural significance this statal institution may have in the eyes of the rest of the world. For it is not the task of the State to create human capabilities, but only to assure free scope for the exercise of capabilities that already exist. Thus, conversely, a State may be called bad if, in spite of the existence of a high cultural level, it dooms to destruction the bearers of that culture by breaking up their racial uniformity. For the practical effect of such a policy would be to destroy those conditions that are indispensable for the ulterior existence of that culture, which the State did not create but which is the fruit of the creative power inherent in the racial stock whose existence is assured by being united in the living organism of the State. Once again let me emphasize the fact that the State itself is not the substance but the form. Therefore, the cultural level is not the standard by which we can judge the value of the State in which that people lives. It is evident that a people which is endowed with high creative powers in the cultural sphere is of more worth than a tribe of negroes. And yet the statal organization of the former, if judged from the standpoint of efficiency, may be worse than that of the negroes. Not even the best of States and statal institutions can evolve faculties from a people which they lack and which they never possessed, but a bad State may gradually destroy the faculties which once existed. This it can do by allowing or favouring the suppression of those who are the bearers of a racial culture.
Therefore, the worth of a State can be determined only by asking how far it actually succeeds in promoting the well-being of a definite race and not by the role which it plays in the world at large. Its relative worth can be estimated readily and accurately; but it is difficult to judge its absolute worth, because the latter is conditioned not only by the State but also by the quality and cultural level of the people that belong to the individual State in question.
Therefore, when we speak of the high mission of the State we must not forget that the high mission belongs to the people and that the business of the State is to use its organizing powers for the purpose of furnishing the necessary conditions which allow this people freely to unfold its creative faculties. And if we ask what kind of statal institution we Germans need, we must first have a clear notion as to the people which that State must embrace and what purpose it must serve.
Unfortunately the German national being is not based on a uniform racial type. The process of welding the original elements together has not gone so far as to warrant us in saying that a new race has emerged. On the contrary, the poison which has invaded the national body, especially since the Thirty Years' War, has destroyed the uniform constitution not only of our blood but also of our national soul. The open frontiers of our native country, the association with non-German foreign elements in the territories that lie all along those frontiers, and especially the strong influx of foreign blood into the interior of the Reich itself, has prevented any complete assimilation of those various elements, because the influx has continued steadily. Out of this melting-pot no new race arose. The heterogeneous elements continue to exist side by side. And the result is that, especially in times of crisis, when the herd usually flocks together, the Germans disperse in all directions. The fundamental racial elements are not only different in different districts, but there are also various elements in the single districts. Beside the Nordic type we find the East-European type, beside the Eastern there is the Dinaric, the Western type intermingling with both, and hybrids among them all. That is a grave drawback for us. Through it the Germans lack that strong herd instinct which arises from unity of blood and saves nations from ruin in dangerous and critical times; because on such occasions small differences disappear, so that a united herd faces the enemy. What we understand by the word hyper-individualism arises from the fact that our primordial racial elements have existed side by side without ever consolidating. During times of peace such a situation may offer some advantages, but, taken all in all, it has prevented us from gaining a mastery in the world. If in its historical development the German people had possessed the unity of herd instinct by which other peoples have so much benefited, then the German Reich would probably be mistress of the globe today. World history would have taken another course and in this case no man can tell if what many blinded pacifists hope to attain by petitioning, whining and crying, may not have been reached in this way: namely, a peace which would not be based upon the waving of olive branches and tearful misery-mongering of pacifist old women, but a peace that would be guaranteed by the triumphant sword of a people endowed with the power to master the world and administer it in the service of a higher civilization.
The fact that our people did not have a national being based on a unity of blood has been the source of untold misery for us. To many petty German potentates it gave residential capital cities, but the German people as a whole was deprived of its right to rulership.
Even today our nation still suffers from this lack of inner unity; but what has been the cause of our past and present misfortunes may turn out a blessing for us in the future. Though on the one hand it may be a drawback that our racial elements were not welded together, so that no homogeneous national body could develop, on the other hand, it was fortunate that, since at least a part of our best blood was thus kept pure, its racial quality was not debased.
A complete assimilation of all our racial elements would certainly have brought about a homogeneous national organism; but, as has been proved in the case of every racial mixture, it would have been less capable of creating a civilization than by keeping intact its best original elements. A benefit which results from the fact that there was no all-round assimilation is to be seen in that even now we have large groups of German Nordic people within our national organization, and that their blood has not been mixed with the blood of other races. We must look upon this as our most valuable treasure for the sake of the future. During that dark period of absolute ignorance in regard to all racial laws, when each individual was considered to be on a par with every other, there could be no clear appreciation of the difference between the various fundamental racial characteristics. We know today that a complete assimilation of all the various elements which constitute the national being might have resulted in giving us a larger share of external power: but, on the other hand, the highest of human aims would not have been attained, because the only kind of people which fate has obviously chosen to bring about this perfection would have been lost in such a general mixture of races which would constitute such a racial amalgamation.
But what has been prevented by a friendly Destiny, without any assistance on our part, must now be reconsidered and utilized in the light of our new knowledge.
He who talks of the German people as having a mission to fulfil on this earth must know that this cannot be fulfilled except by the building up of a State whose highest purpose is to preserve and promote those nobler elements of our race and of the whole of mankind which have remained unimpaired.
Thus for the first time a high inner purpose is accredited to the State. In face of the ridiculous phrase that the State should do no more than act as the guardian of public order and tranquillity, so that everybody can peacefully dupe everybody else, it is given a very high mission indeed to preserve and encourage the highest type of humanity which a beneficent Creator has bestowed on this earth. Out of a dead mechanism which claims to be an end in itself a living organism shall arise which has to serve one purpose exclusively: and that, indeed, a purpose which belongs to a higher order of ideas.
As a State the German Reich shall include all Germans. Its task is not only to gather in and foster the most valuable sections of our people but to lead them slowly and surely to a dominant position in the world.
Thus a period of stagnation is superseded by a period of effort. And here, as in every other sphere, the proverb holds good that to rest is to rust; and furthermore the proverb that victory will always be won by him who attacks. The higher the final goal which we strive to reach, and the less it be understood at the time by the broad masses, the more magnificent will be its success. That is what the lesson of history teaches. And the achievement will be all the more significant if the end is conceived in the right way and the fight carried through with unswerving persistence.
Many of the officials who direct the affairs of State nowadays may find it easier to work for the maintenance of the present order than to fight for a new one. They will find it more comfortable to look upon the State as a mechanism, whose purpose is its own preservation, and to say that their lives 'belong to the State' -- as if anything that grew from the inner life of the nation can logically serve anything but the national being, and as if man could be made for anything else than for his fellow beings. Naturally, it is easier, as I have said, to consider the authority of the State as nothing but the formal mechanism of an organization, rather than as the sovereign incarnation of a people's instinct for self-preservation on this earth. For these weak minds the State and the authority of the State is nothing but an aim in itself, while for us it is an effective weapon in the service of the great and eternal struggle for existence, a weapon which everyone must adopt, not because it is a mere formal mechanism, but because it is the main expression of our common will to exist.
Therefore, in the fight for our new idea, which conforms completely to the primal meaning of life, we shall find only a small number of comrades in a social order which has become decrepit not only physically but mentally also. From these strata of our population only a few exceptional people will join our ranks, only those few old people whose hearts have remained young and whose courage is still vigorous, but not those who consider it their duty to maintain the state of affairs that exists.
Against us we have the innumerable army of all those who are lazy-minded and indifferent rather than evil, and those whose self-interest leads them to uphold the present state of affairs. On the apparent hopelessness of our great struggle is based the magnitude of our task and the possibilities of success. A battle-cry which from the very start will scare off all the petty spirits, or at least discourage them, will become the signal for a rally of all those temperaments that are of the real fighting metal. And it must be clearly recognized that if a highly energetic and active body of men emerge from a nation and unite in the fight for one goal, thereby ultimately rising above the inert masses of the people, this small percentage will become masters of the whole. World history is made by minorities if these numerical minorities represent in themselves the will and energy and initiative of the people as a whole.
What seems an obstacle to many persons is really a preliminary condition of our victory. Just because our task is so great and because so many difficulties have to be overcome, the highest probability is that only the best kind of protagonists will join our ranks. This selection is the guarantee of our success.
Nature generally takes certain measures to correct the effect which racial mixture produces in life. She is not much in favour of the mongrel. The later products of cross-breeding have to suffer bitterly, especially the third, fourth and fifth generations. Not only are they deprived of the higher qualities that belonged to the parents who participated in the first mixture, but they also lack definite will-power and vigorous vital energies owing to the lack of harmony in the quality of their blood. At all critical moments in which a person of pure racial blood makes correct decisions, that is to say, decisions that are coherent and uniform, the person of mixed blood will become confused and take measures that are incoherent. Hence we see that a person of mixed blood is not only relatively inferior to a person of pure blood, but is also doomed to become extinct more rapidly. In innumerable cases wherein the pure race holds its ground the mongrel breaks down. Therein we witness the corrective provision which Nature adopts. She restricts the possibilities of procreation, thus impeding the fertility of cross-breeds and bringing them to extinction.
For instance, if an individual member of a race should mingle his blood with the member of a superior race the first result would be a lowering of the racial level, and furthermore the descendants of this cross-breeding would be weaker than those of the people around them who had maintained their blood unadulterated. Where no new blood from the superior race enters the racial stream of the mongrels, and where those mongrels continue to cross-breed among themselves, the latter will either die out because they have insufficient powers of resistance, which is Nature's wise provision, or in the course of many thousands of years they will form a new mongrel race in which the original elements will become so wholly mixed through this millennial crossing that traces of the original elements will be no longer recognizable. And thus a new people would be developed which possessed a certain resistance capacity of the herd type, but its intellectual value and its cultural significance would be essentially inferior to those which the first cross-breeds possessed. But even in this last case the mongrel product would succumb in the mutual struggle for existence with a higher racial group that had maintained its blood unmixed. The herd solidarity which this mongrel race had developed through thousands of years will not be equal to the struggle. And this is because it would lack elasticity and constructive capacity to prevail over a race of homogeneous blood that was mentally and culturally superior.
Therewith we may lay down the following principle as valid:
every racial mixture leads, of necessity, sooner or later to the downfall of the mongrel product, provided the higher racial strata of this cross-breed has not retained within itself some sort of racial homogeneity. The danger to the mongrels ceases only when this higher stratum, which has maintained certain standards of homogeneous breeding, ceases to be true to its pedigree and intermingles with the mongrels.
This principle is the source of a slow but constant regeneration whereby all the poison which has invaded the racial body is gradually eliminated so long as there still remains a fundamental stock of pure racial elements which resists further crossbreeding.
Such a process may set in automatically among those people where a strong racial instinct has remained. Among such people we may count those elements which, for some particular cause such as coercion, have been thrown out of the normal way of reproduction along strict racial lines. As soon as this compulsion ceases, that part of the race which has remained intact will tend to marry with its own kind and thus impede further intermingling. Then the mongrels recede quite naturally into the background unless their numbers had increased so much as to be able to withstand all serious resistance from those elements which had preserved the purity of their race.
When men have lost their natural instincts and ignore the obligations imposed on them by Nature, then there is no hope that Nature will correct the loss that has been caused, until recognition of the lost instincts has been restored. Then the task of bringing back what has been lost will have to be accomplished. But there is serious danger that those who have become blind once in this respect will continue more and more to break down racial barriers and finally lose the last remnants of what is best in them. What then remains is nothing but a uniform mish-mash, which seems to be the dream of our fine Utopians. But that mish-mash would soon banish all ideals from the world. Certainly a great herd could thus be formed. One can breed a herd of animals; but from a mixture of this kind men such as have created and founded civilizations would not be produced. The mission of humanity might then be considered at an end.
Those who do not wish that the earth should fall into such a condition must realize that it is the task of the German State in particular to see to it that the process of bastardization is brought to a stop.
Our contemporary generation of weaklings will naturally decry such a policy and whine and complain about it as an encroachment on the most sacred of human rights. But there is only one right that is sacrosanct and this right is at the same time a most sacred duty. This right and obligation are: that the purity of the racial blood should be guarded, so that the best types of human beings may be preserved and that thus we should render possible a more noble development of humanity itself.
A folk-State should in the first place raise matrimony from the level of being a constant scandal to the race. The State should consecrate it as an institution which is called upon to produce creatures made in the likeness of the Lord and not create monsters that are a mixture of man and ape. The protest which is put forward in the name of humanity does not fit the mouth of a generation that makes it possible for the most depraved degenerates to propagate themselves, thereby imposing unspeakable suffering on their own products and their contemporaries, while on the other hand contraceptives are permitted and sold in every drug store and even by street hawkers, so that babies should not be born even among the healthiest of our people. In this present State of ours, whose function it is to be the guardian of peace and good order, our national bourgeoisie look upon it as a crime to make procreation impossible for syphilitics and those who suffer from tuberculosis or other hereditary diseases, also cripples and imbeciles. But the practical prevention of procreation among millions of our very best people is not considered as an evil, nor does it offend against the noble morality of this social class but rather encourages their short-sightedness and mental lethargy. For otherwise they would at least stir their brains to find an answer to the question of how to create conditions for the feeding and maintaining of those future beings who will be the healthy representatives of our nation and must also provide the conditions on which the generation that is to follow them will have to support itself and live.
How devoid of ideals and how ignoble is the whole contemporary system! The fact that the churches join in committing this sin against the image of God, even though they continue to emphasize the dignity of that image, is quite in keeping with their present activities. They talk about the Spirit, but they allow man, as the embodiment of the Spirit, to degenerate to the proletarian level. Then they look on with amazement when they realize how small is the influence of the Christian Faith in their own country and how depraved and ungodly is this riff-raff which is physically degenerate and therefore morally degenerate also. To balance this state of affairs they try to convert the Hottentots and the Zulus and the Kaffirs and to bestow on them the blessings of the Church. While our European people, God be praised and thanked, are left to become the victims of moral depravity, the pious missionary goes out to Central Africa and establishes missionary stations for negroes. Finally, sound and healthy – though primitive and backward – people will be transformed, under the name of our 'higher civilization', into a motley of lazy and brutalized mongrels.
It would better accord with noble human aspirations if our two Christian denominations would cease to bother the negroes with their preaching, which the negroes neither desire nor understand. It would be better if they left this work alone, and if, in its stead, they tried to teach people in Europe, kindly and seriously, that it is much more pleasing to God if a couple that is not of healthy stock were to show loving kindness to some poor orphan and become a father and mother to him, rather than give life to a sickly child that will be a cause of suffering and unhappiness to all.
In this field the People's State will have to repair the damage that arises from the fact that the problem is at present neglected by all the various parties concerned. It will be the task of the People's State to make the race the centre of the life of the community. It must make sure that the purity of the racial strain will be preserved. It must proclaim the truth that the child is the most valuable possession a people can have. It must see to it that only those who are healthy shall beget children; that there is only one infamy, namely, for parents that are ill or show hereditary defects to bring children into the world and that in such cases it is a high honour to refrain from doing so. But, on the other hand, it must be considered as reprehensible conduct to refrain from giving healthy children to the nation. In this matter the State must assert itself as the trustee of a millennial future, in face of which the egotistic desires of the individual count for nothing and will have to give way before the ruling of the State. In order to fulfil this duty in a practical manner the State will have to avail itself of modern medical discoveries. It must proclaim as unfit for procreation all those who are inflicted with some visible hereditary disease or are the carriers of it; and practical measures must be adopted to have such people rendered sterile. On the other hand, provision must be made for the normally fertile woman so that she will not be restricted in child-bearing through the financial and economic system operating in a political regime that looks upon the blessing of having children as a curse to their parents. The State will have to abolish the cowardly and even criminal indifference with which the problem of social amenities for large families is treated, and it will have to be the supreme protector of this greatest blessing that a people can boast of. Its attention and care must be directed towards the child rather than the adult.
Those who are physically and mentally unhealthy and unfit must not perpetuate their own suffering in the bodies of their children. From the educational point of view there is here a huge task for the People's State to accomplish. But in a future era this work will appear greater and more significant than the victorious wars of our present bourgeois epoch. Through educational means the State must teach individuals that illness is not a disgrace but an unfortunate accident which has to be pitied, yet that it is a crime and a disgrace to make this affliction all the worse by passing on disease and defects to innocent creatures out of mere egotism. And the State must also teach the people that it is an expression of a really noble nature and that it is a humanitarian act worthy of admiration if a person who innocently suffers from hereditary disease refrains from having a child of his own but gives his love and affection to some unknown child who, through its health, promises to become a robust member of a healthy community. In accomplishing such an educational task the State integrates its function by this activity in the moral sphere. It must act on this principle without paying any attention to the question of whether its conduct will be understood or misconstrued, blamed or praised.
If for a period of only 600 years those individuals would be sterilized who are physically degenerate or mentally diseased, humanity would not only be delivered from an immense misfortune but also restored to a state of general health such as we at present can hardly imagine. If the fecundity of the healthy portion of the nation should be made a practical matter in a conscientious and methodical way, we should have at least the beginnings of a race from which all those germs would be eliminated which are today the cause of our moral and physical decadence. If a people and a State take this course to develop that nucleus of the nation which is most valuable from the racial standpoint and thus increase its fecundity, the people as a whole will subsequently enjoy that most precious of gifts which consists in a racial quality fashioned on truly noble lines.
To achieve this the State should first of all not leave the colonization of newly acquired territory to a haphazard policy but should have it carried out under the guidance of definite principles. Specially competent committees ought to issue certificates to individuals entitling them to engage in colonization work, and these certificates should guarantee the racial purity of the individuals in question. In this way frontier colonies could gradually be founded whose inhabitants would be of the purest racial stock, and hence would possess the best qualities of the race. Such colonies would be a valuable asset to the whole nation. Their development would be a source of joy and confidence and pride to each citizen of the nation, because they would contain the pure germ which would ultimately bring about a great development of the nation and indeed of mankind itself.
The folkish philosophy of life which bases the State on the racial idea must finally succeed in bringing about a nobler era, in which men will no longer pay exclusive attention to breeding and rearing pedigree dogs and horses and cats, but will endeavour to improve the breed of the human race itself. That will be an era of silence and renunciation for one class of people, while the others will give their gifts and make their sacrifices joyfully.
That such a mentality may be possible cannot be denied in a world where hundreds and thousands accept the principle of celibacy from their own choice, without being obliged or pledged to do so by anything except an ecclesiastical precept. Why should it not be possible to induce people to make this sacrifice if, instead of such a precept, they were simply told that they ought to put an end to this truly original sin of racial corruption which is steadily being passed on from one generation to another. And, further, they ought to be brought to realize that it is their bounden duty to give to the Almighty Creator beings such as He himself made to His own image.
Naturally, our wretched army of contemporary philistines will not understand these things. They will ridicule them or shrug their round shoulders and groan out their everlasting excuses: "Of course it is a fine thing, but the pity is that it cannot be carried out." And we reply: "With you indeed it cannot be done, for your world is incapable of such an idea. You know only one anxiety and that is for your own personal existence. You have one God, and that is your money. We do not turn to you, however, for help, but to the great army of those who are too poor to consider their personal existence as the highest good on earth. They do not place their trust in money but in other gods, into whose hands they confide their lives. Above all we turn to the vast army of our German youth. They are coming to maturity in a great epoch, and they will fight against the evils which were due to the laziness and indifference of their fathers." Either the German youth will one day create a new State founded on the racial idea or they will be the last witnesses of the complete breakdown and death of the bourgeois world.
For if a generation suffers from defects which it recognizes and even admits and is nevertheless quite pleased with itself, as the bourgeois world is today, resorting to the cheap excuse that nothing can be done to remedy the situation, then such a generation is doomed to disaster. A marked characteristic of our bourgeois world is that they no longer can deny the evil conditions that exist. They have to admit that there is much which is foul and wrong; but they are not able to make up their minds to fight against that evil, which would mean putting forth the energy to mobilize the forces of 60 or 70 million people and thus oppose this menace. They do just the opposite. When such an effort is made elsewhere they only indulge in silly comment and try from a safe distance to show that such an enterprise is theoretically impossible and doomed to failure. No arguments are too stupid to be employed in the service of their own pettifogging opinions and their knavish moral attitude. If, for instance, a whole continent wages war against alcoholic intoxication, so as to free a whole people from this devastating vice, our bourgeois European does not know better than to look sideways stupidly, shake the head in doubt and ridicule the movement with a superior sneer – a state of mind which is effective in a society that is so ridiculous. But when all these stupidities miss their aim and in that part of the world this sublime and intangible attitude is treated effectively and success attends the movement, then such success is called into question or its importance minimized. Even moral principles are used in this slanderous campaign against a movement which aims at suppressing a great source of immorality.
No. We must not permit ourselves to be deceived by any illusions on this point. Our contemporary bourgeois world has become useless for any such noble human task because it has lost all high quality and is evil, not so much - as I think - because evil is wished but rather because these people are too indolent to rise up against it. That is why those political societies which call themselves 'bourgeois parties' are nothing but associations to promote the interests of certain professional groups and classes. Their highest aim is to defend their own egoistic interests as best they can. It is obvious that such a guild, consisting of bourgeois politicians, may be considered fit for anything rather than a struggle, especially when the adversaries are not cautious shopkeepers but the proletarian masses, goaded on to extremities and determined not to hesitate before deeds of violence.
If we consider it the first duty of the State to serve and promote the general welfare of the people, by preserving and encouraging the development of the best racial elements, the logical consequence is that this task cannot be limited to measures concerning the birth of the infant members of the race and nation but that the State will also have to adopt educational means for making each citizen a worthy factor in the further propagation of the racial stock.
Just as, in general, the racial quality is the preliminary condition for the mental efficiency of any given human material, the training of the individual will first of all have to be directed towards the development of sound bodily health. For the general rule is that a strong and healthy mind is found only in a strong and healthy body. The fact that men of genius are sometimes not robust in health and stature, or even of a sickly constitution, is no proof against the principle I have enunciated. These cases are only exceptions which, as everywhere else, prove the rule. But when the bulk of a nation is composed of physical degenerates it is rare for a great spirit to arise from such a miserable motley. And in any case his activities would never meet with great success. A degenerate mob will either be incapable of understanding him at all or their will-power is so feeble that they cannot follow the soaring of such an eagle.
The State that is grounded on the racial principle and is alive to the significance of this truth will first of all have to base its educational work not on the mere imparting of knowledge but rather on physical training and development of healthy bodies. The cultivation of the intellectual facilities comes only in the second place. And here again it is character which has to be developed first of all, strength of will and decision. And the educational system ought to foster the spirit of readiness to accept responsibilities gladly. Formal instruction in the sciences must be considered last in importance. Accordingly the State which is grounded on the racial idea must start with the principle that a person whose formal education in the sciences is relatively small but who is physically sound and robust, of a steadfast and honest character, ready and able to make decisions and endowed with strength of will, is a more useful member of the national community than a weakling who is scholarly and refined. A nation composed of learned men who are physical weaklings, hesitant about decisions of the will, and timid pacifists, is not capable of assuring even its own existence on this earth. In the bitter struggle which decides the destiny of man it is very rare that an individual has succumbed because he lacked learning. Those who fail are they who try to ignore these consequences and are too faint-hearted about putting them into effect. There must be a certain balance between mind and body. An ill-kept body is not made a more beautiful sight by the indwelling of a radiant spirit. We should not be acting justly if we were to bestow the highest intellectual training on those who are physically deformed and crippled, who lack decision and are weak-willed and cowardly. What has made the Greek ideal of beauty immortal is the wonderful union of a splendid physical beauty with nobility of mind and spirit.
Moltke's saying, that in the long run fortune favours only the efficient, is certainly valid for the relationship between body and spirit. A mind which is sound will generally maintain its dwelling in a body that is sound.
Accordingly, in the People's State physical training is not a matter for the individual alone. Nor is it a duty which first devolves on the parents and only secondly or thirdly a public interest; but it is necessary for the preservation of the people, who are represented and protected by the State. As regards purely formal education the State even now interferes with the individual's right of self-determination and insists upon the right of the community by submitting the child to an obligatory system of training, without paying attention to the approval or disapproval of the parents. In a similar way and to a higher degree the new People's State will one day make its authority prevail over the ignorance and incomprehension of individuals in problems appertaining to the safety of the nation. It must organize its educational work in such a way that the bodies of the young will be systematically trained from infancy onwards, so as to be tempered and hardened for the demands to be made on them in later years. Above all, the State must see to it that a generation of stay-at-homes is not developed.
The work of education and hygiene has to begin with the young mother. The painstaking efforts carried on for several decades have succeeded in abolishing septic infection at childbirth and reducing puerperal fever to a relatively small number of cases. And so it ought to be possible by means of instructing sisters and mothers in an opportune way, to institute a system of training the child from early infancy onwards so that this may serve as an excellent basis for future development.
The People's State ought to allow much more time for physical training in the school. It is nonsense to burden young brains with a load of material of which, as experience shows, they retain only a small part, and mostly not the essentials, but only the secondary and useless portion; because the young mind is incapable of sifting the right kind of learning out of all the stuff that is pumped into it. To-day, even in the curriculum of the high schools, only two short hours in the week are reserved for gymnastics; and worse still, it is left to the pupils to decide whether or not they want to take part. This shows a grave disproportion between this branch of education and purely intellectual instruction. Not a single day should be allowed to pass in which the young pupil does not have one hour of physical training in the morning and one in the evening; and every kind of sport and gymnastics should be included. There is one kind of sport which should be specially encouraged, although many people who call themselves völkisch consider it brutal and vulgar, and that is boxing. It is incredible how many false notions prevail among the 'cultivated' classes. The fact that the young man learns how to fence and then spends his time in duels is considered quite natural and respectable. But boxing – that is brutal. Why? There is no other sport which equals this in developing the militant spirit, none that demands such a power of rapid decision or which gives the body the flexibility of good steel. It is no more vulgar when two young people settle their differences with their fists than with sharp-pointed pieces of steel. One who is attacked and defends himself with his fists surely does not act less manly than one who runs off and yells for the assistance of a policeman. But, above all, a healthy youth has to learn to endure hard knocks. This principle may appear savage to our contemporary champions who fight only with the weapons of the intellect. But it is not the purpose of the People's State to educate a colony of æsthetic pacifists and physical degenerates. This State does not consider that the human ideal is to be found in the honourable philistine or the maidenly spinster, but in a dareful personification of manly force and in women capable of bringing men into the world.
Generally speaking, the function of sport is not only to make the individual strong, alert and daring, but also to harden the body and train it to endure an adverse environment.
If our superior class had not received such a distinguished education, and if, on the contrary, they had learned boxing, it would never have been possible for bullies and deserters and other such canaille to carry through a German revolution. For the success of this revolution was not due to the courageous, energetic and audacious activities of its authors but to the lamentable cowardice and irresolution of those who ruled the German State at that time and were responsible for it. But our educated leaders had received only an 'intellectual' training and thus found themselves defenceless when their adversaries used iron bars instead of intellectual weapons. All this could happen only because our superior scholastic system did not train men to be real men but merely to be civil servants, engineers, technicians, chemists, litterateurs, jurists and, finally, professors; so that intellectualism should not die out.
Our leadership in the purely intellectual sphere has always been brilliant, but as regards will-power in practical affairs our leadership has been beneath criticism.
Of course education cannot make a courageous man out of one who is temperamentally a coward. But a man who naturally possesses a certain degree of courage will not be able to develop that quality if his defective education has made him inferior to others from the very start as regards physical strength and prowess. The army offers the best example of the fact that the knowledge of one's physical ability develops a man's courage and militant spirit. Outstanding heroes are not the rule in the army, but the average represents men of high courage. The excellent schooling which the German soldiers received before the War imbued the members of the whole gigantic organism with a degree of confidence in their own superiority such as even our opponents never thought possible. All the immortal examples of dauntless courage and daring which the German armies gave during the late summer and autumn of 1914, as they advanced from triumph to triumph, were the result of that education which had been pursued systematically. During those long years of peace before the last War men who were almost physical weaklings were made capable of incredible deeds, and thus a self-confidence was developed which did not fail even in the most terrible battles.
It is our German people, which broke down and were delivered over to be kicked by the rest of the world, that had need of the power that comes by suggestion from self-confidence. But this confidence in one's self must be instilled into our children from their very early years. The whole system of education and training must be directed towards fostering in the child the conviction that he is unquestionably a match for any- and everybody. The individual has to regain his own physical strength and prowess in order to believe in the invincibility of the nation to which he belongs. What has formerly led the German armies to victory was the sum total of the confidence which each individual had in himself, and which all of them had in those who held the positions of command. What will restore the national strength of the German people is the conviction that they will be able to reconquer their liberty. But this conviction can only be the final product of an equal feeling in the millions of individuals. And here again we must have no illusions.
The collapse of our people was overwhelming, and the efforts to put an end to so much misery must also be overwhelming. It would be a bitter and grave error to believe that our people could be made strong again simply by means of our present bourgeois training in good order and obedience. That will not suffice if we are to break up the present order of things, which now sanctions the acknowledgment of our defeat and cast the broken chains of our slavery in the face of our opponents. Only by a superabundance of national energy and a passionate thirst for liberty can we recover what has been lost.
Also the manner of clothing the young should be such as harmonizes with this purpose. It is really lamentable to see how our young people have fallen victims to a fashion mania which perverts the meaning of the old adage that clothes make the man.
Especially in regard to young people clothes should take their place in the service of education. The boy who walks about in summer-time wearing long baggy trousers and clad up to the neck is hampered even by his clothes in feeling any inclination towards strenuous physical exercise. Ambition and, to speak quite frankly, even vanity must be appealed to. I do not mean such vanity as leads people to want to wear fine clothes, which not everybody can afford, but rather the vanity which inclines a person towards developing a fine bodily physique. And this is something which everybody can help to do.
This will come in useful also for later years. The young girl must become acquainted with her sweetheart. If the beauty of the body were not completely forced into the background today through our stupid manner of dressing, it would not be possible for thousands of our girls to be led astray by Jewish mongrels, with their repulsive crooked waddle. It is also in the interests of the nation that those who have a beautiful physique should be brought into the foreground, so that they might encourage the development of a beautiful bodily form among the people in general.
Military training is excluded among us today, and therewith the only institution which in peace-times at least partly made up for the lack of physical training in our education. Therefore what I have suggested is all the more necessary in our time. The success of our old military training not only showed itself in the education of the individual but also in the influence which it exercised over the mutual relationship between the sexes. The young girl preferred the soldier to one who was not a soldier. The People's State must not confine its control of physical training to the official school period, but it must demand that, after leaving school and while the adolescent body is still developing, the boy continues this training. For on such proper physical development success in after-life largely depends. It is stupid to think that the right of the State to supervise the education of its young citizens suddenly comes to an end the moment they leave school and recommences only with military service. This right is a duty, and as such it must continue uninterruptedly. The present State, which does not interest itself in developing healthy men, has criminally neglected this duty. It leaves our contemporary youth to be corrupted on the streets and in the brothels, instead of keeping hold of the reins and continuing the physical training of these youths up to the time when they are grown into healthy young men and women.
For the present it is a matter of indifference what form the State chooses for carrying on this training. The essential matter is that it should be developed and that the most suitable ways of doing so should be investigated. The People's State will have to consider the physical training of the youth after the school period just as much a public duty as their intellectual training; and this training will have to be carried out through public institutions. Its general lines can be a preparation for subsequent service in the army. And then it will no longer be the task of the army to teach the young recruit the most elementary drill regulations. In fact the army will no longer have to deal with recruits in the present sense of the word, but it will rather have to transform into a soldier the youth whose bodily prowess has been already fully trained.
In the People's State the army will no longer be obliged to teach boys how to walk and stand erect, but it will be the final and supreme school of patriotic education. In the army the young recruit will learn the art of bearing arms, but at the same time he will be equipped for his other duties in later life. And the supreme aim of military education must always be to achieve that which was attributed to the old army as its highest merit: namely, that through his military schooling the boy must be transformed into a man, that he must not only learn to obey but also acquire the fundamentals that will enable him one day to command. He must learn to remain silent not only when he is rightly rebuked but also when he is wrongly rebuked.
Furthermore, on the self-consciousness of his own strength and on the basis of that esprit de corps which inspires him and his comrades, he must become convinced that he belongs to a people who are invincible.
After he has completed his military training two certificates shall be handed to the soldier. The one will be his diploma as a citizen of the State, a juridical document which will enable him to take part in public affairs. The second will be an attestation of his physical health, which guarantees his fitness for marriage.
The People's State will have to direct the education of girls just as that of boys and according to the same fundamental principles. Here again special importance must be given to physical training, and only after that must the importance of spiritual and mental training be taken into account. In the education of the girl the final goal always to be kept in mind is that she is one day to be a mother.
It is only in the second place that the People's State must busy itself with the training of character, using all the means adapted to that purpose.
Of course the essential traits of the individual character are already there fundamentally before any education takes place. A person who is fundamentally egoistic will always remain fundamentally egoistic, and the idealist will always remain fundamentally an idealist. Besides those, however, who already possess a definite stamp of character there are millions of people with characters that are indefinite and vague. The born delinquent will always remain a delinquent, but numerous people who show only a certain tendency to commit criminal acts may become useful members of the community if rightly trained; whereas, on the other hand, weak and unstable characters may easily become evil elements if the system of education has been bad.
During the War it was often lamented that our people could be so little reticent. This failing made it very difficult to keep even highly important secrets from the knowledge of the enemy. But let us ask this question: What did the German educational system do in pre-War times to teach the Germans to be discreet? Did it not very often happen in schooldays that the little tell-tale was preferred to his companions who kept their mouths shut? Is it not true that then, as well as now, complaining about others was considered praiseworthy 'candour', while silent discretion was taken as obstinacy? Has any attempt ever been made to teach that discretion is a precious and manly virtue? No, for such matters are trifles in the eyes of our educators. But these trifles cost our State innumerable millions in legal expenses; for 90 per cent of all the processes for defamation and such like charges arise only from a lack of discretion. Remarks that are made without any sense of responsibility are thoughtlessly repeated from mouth to mouth; and our economic welfare is continually damaged because important methods of production are thus disclosed. Secret preparations for our national defence are rendered illusory because our people have never learned the duty of silence. They repeat everything they happen to hear. In times of war such talkative habits may even cause the loss of battles and therefore may contribute essentially to the unsuccessful outcome of a campaign. Here, as in other matters, we may rest assured that adults cannot do what they have not learnt to do in youth. A teacher must not try to discover the wild tricks of the boys by encouraging the evil practice of tale-bearing. Young people form a sort of State among themselves and face adults with a certain solidarity. That is quite natural. The ties which unite the ten-year boys to one another are stronger and more natural than their relationship to adults. A boy who tells on his comrades commits an act of treason and shows a bent of character which is, to speak bluntly, similar to that of a man who commits high treason. Such a boy must not be classed as 'good', 'reliable', and so on, but rather as one with undesirable traits of character. It may be rather convenient for the teacher to make use of such unworthy tendencies in order to help his own work, but by such an attitude the germ of a moral habit is sown in young hearts and may one day show fatal consequences. It has happened more often than once that a young informer developed into a big scoundrel.
This is only one example among many. The deliberate training of fine and noble traits of character in our schools today is almost negative. In the future much more emphasis will have to be laid on this side of our educational work. Loyalty, self-sacrifice and discretion are virtues which a great nation must possess. And the teaching and development of these in the school is a more important matter than many others things now included in the curriculum. To make the children give up habits of complaining and whining and howling when they are hurt, etc., also belongs to this part of their training. If the educational system fails to teach the child at an early age to endure pain and injury without complaining we cannot be surprised if at a later age, when the boy has grown to be the man and is, for example, in the trenches, the postal service is used for nothing else than to send home letters of weeping and complaint. If our youths, during their years in the primary schools, had had their minds crammed with a little less knowledge, and if instead they had been better taught how to be masters of themselves, it would have served us well during the years 1914–1918.
In its educational system the People's State will have to attach the highest importance to the development of character, hand-in-hand with physical training. Many more defects which our national organism shows at present could be at least ameliorated, if not completely eliminated, by education of the right kind.
Extreme importance should be attached to the training of will-power and the habit of making firm decisions, also the habit of being always ready to accept responsibilities.
In the training of our old army the principle was in vogue that any order is always better than no order. Applied to our youth this principle ought to take the form that any answer is better than no answer. The fear of replying, because one fears to be wrong, ought to be considered more humiliating than giving the wrong reply. On this simple and primitive basis our youth should be trained to have the courage to act.
It has been often lamented that in November and December 1918 all the authorities lost their heads and that, from the monarch down to the last divisional commander, nobody had sufficient mettle to make a decision on his own responsibility. That terrible fact constitutes a grave rebuke to our educational system; because what was then revealed on a colossal scale at that moment of catastrophe was only what happens on a smaller scale everywhere among us. It is the lack of will-power, and not the lack of arms, which renders us incapable of offering any serious resistance today. This defect is found everywhere among our people and prevents decisive action wherever risks have to be taken, as if any great action can be taken without also taking the risk. Quite unsuspectingly, a German General found a formula for this lamentable lack of the will-to-act when he said: "I act only when I can count on a 51 per cent probability of success." In that '51 per cent probability' we find the very root of the German collapse. The man who demands from Fate a guarantee of his success deliberately denies the significance of an heroic act. For this significance consists in the very fact that, in the definite knowledge that the situation in question is fraught with mortal danger, an action is undertaken which may lead to success. A patient suffering from cancer and who knows that his death is certain if he does not undergo an operation, needs no 51 per cent probability of a cure before facing the operation. And if the operation promises only half of one per cent probability of success a man of courage will risk it and would not whine if it turned out unsuccessful.
All in all, the cowardly lack of will-power and the incapacity for making decisions are chiefly results of the erroneous education given us in our youth. The disastrous effects of this are now widespread among us. The crowning examples of that tragic chain of consequences are shown in the lack of civil courage which our leading statesmen display.
The cowardice which leads nowadays to the shirking of every kind of responsibility springs from the same roots. Here again it is the fault of the education given our young people. This drawback permeates all sections of public life and finds its immortal consummation in the institutions of government that function under the parliamentary regime.
Already in the school, unfortunately, more value is placed on 'confession and full repentance' and 'contrite renouncement', on the part of little sinners, than on a simple and frank avowal. But this latter seems today, in the eyes of many an educator, to savour of a spirit of utter incorrigibility and depravation. And, though it may seem incredible, many a boy is told that the gallows tree is waiting for him because he has shown certain traits which might be of inestimable value in the nation as a whole.
Just as the People's State must one day give its attention to training the will-power and capacity for decision among the youth, so too it must inculcate in the hearts of the young generation from early childhood onwards a readiness to accept responsibilities, and the courage of open and frank avowal. If it recognizes the full significance of this necessity, finally – after a century of educative work – it will succeed in building up a nation which will no longer be subject to those defeats that have contributed so disastrously to bring about our present overthrow.
The formal imparting of knowledge, which constitutes the chief work of our educational system today, will be taken over by the People's State with only few modifications. These modifications must be made in three branches.
First of all, the brains of the young people must not generally be burdened with subjects of which ninety-five per cent are useless to them and are therefore forgotten again. The curriculum of the primary and secondary schools presents an odd mixture at the present time. In many branches of study the subject matter to be learned has become so enormous that only a very small fraction of it can be remembered later on, and indeed only a very small fraction of this whole mass of knowledge can be used. On the other hand, what is learned is insufficient for anybody who wishes to specialize in any certain branch for the purpose of earning his daily bread. Take, for example, the average civil servant who has passed through the Gymnasium or High School, and ask him at the age of thirty or forty how much he has retained of the knowledge that was crammed into him with so much pains.
How much is retained from all that was stuffed into his brain? He will certainly answer: "Well, if a mass of stuff was then taught, it was not for the sole purpose of supplying the student with a great stock of knowledge from which he could draw in later years, but it served to develop the understanding, the memory, and above all it helped to strengthen the thinking powers of the brain." That is partly true. And yet it is somewhat dangerous to submerge a young brain in a flood of impressions which it can hardly master and the single elements of which it cannot discern or appreciate at their just value. It is mostly the essential part of this knowledge, and not the accidental, that is forgotten and sacrificed. Thus the principal purpose of this copious instruction is frustrated, for that purpose cannot be to make the brain capable of learning by simply offering it an enormous and varied amount of subjects for acquisition, but rather to furnish the individual with that stock of knowledge which he will need in later life and which he can use for the good of the community. This aim, however, is rendered illusory if, because of the superabundance of subjects that have been crammed into his head in childhood, a person is able to remember nothing, or at least not the essential portion, of all this in later life. There is no reason why millions of people should learn two or three languages during the school years, when only a very small fraction will have the opportunity to use these languages in later life and when most of them will therefore forget those languages completely. To take an instance: Out of 100,000 students who learn French there are probably not 2,000 who will be in a position to make use of this accomplishment in later life, while 98,000 will never have a chance to utilize in practice what they have learned in youth. They have spent thousands of hours on a subject which will afterwards be without any value or importance to them. The argument that these matters form part of the general process of educating the mind is invalid. It would be sound if all these people were able to use this learning in after life. But, as the situation stands, 98,000 are tortured to no purpose and waste their valuable time, only for the sake of the 2,000 to whom the language will be of any use.
In the case of that language which I have chosen as an example it cannot be said that the learning of it educates the student in logical thinking or sharpens his mental acumen, as the learning of Latin, for instance, might be said to do. It would therefore be much better to teach young students only the general outline, or, better, the inner structure of such a language: that is to say, to allow them to discern the characteristic features of the language, or perhaps to make them acquainted with the rudiments of its grammar, its pronunciation, its syntax, style, etc. That would be sufficient for average students, because it would provide a clearer view of the whole and could be more easily remembered. And it would be more practical than the present-day attempt to cram into their heads a detailed knowledge of the whole language, which they can never master and which they will readily forget. If this method were adopted, then we should avoid the danger that, out of the superabundance of matter taught, only some fragments will remain in the memory; for the youth would then have to learn what is worth while, and the selection between the useful and the useless would thus have been made beforehand.
As regards the majority of students the knowledge and understanding of the rudiments of a language would be quite sufficient for the rest of their lives. And those who really do need this language subsequently would thus have a foundation on which to start, should they choose to make a more thorough study of it.
By adopting such a curriculum the necessary amount of time would be gained for physical exercises as well as for a more intense training in the various educational fields that have already been mentioned.
A reform of particular importance is that which ought to take place in the present methods of teaching history. Scarcely any other people are made to study as much of history as the Germans, and scarcely any other people make such a bad use of their historical knowledge. If politics means history in the making, then our way of teaching history stands condemned by the way we have conducted our politics. But there would be no point in bewailing the lamentable results of our political conduct unless one is now determined to give our people a better political education. In 99 out of 100 cases the results of our present teaching of history are deplorable. Usually only a few dates, years of birth and names, remain in the memory, while a knowledge of the main and clearly defined lines of historical development is completely lacking. The essential features which are of real significance are not taught. It is left to the more or less bright intelligence of the individual to discover the inner motivating urge amid the mass of dates and chronological succession of events.
You may object as strongly as you like to this unpleasant statement. But read with attention the speeches which our parliamentarians make during one session alone on political problems and on questions of foreign policy in particular. Remember that those gentlemen are, or claim to be, the elite of the German nation and that at least a great number of them have sat on the benches of our secondary schools and that many of them have passed through our universities. Then you will realize how defective the historical education of these people has been. If these gentlemen had never studied history at all but had possessed a sound instinct for public affairs, things would have gone better, and the nation would have benefited greatly thereby.
The subject matter of our historical teaching must be curtailed. The chief value of that teaching is to make the principal lines of historical development understood. The more our historical teaching is limited to this task, the more we may hope that it will turn out subsequently to be of advantage to the individual and, through the individual, to the community as a whole. For history must not be studied merely with a view to knowing what happened in the past but as a guide for the future, and to teach us what policy would be the best to follow for the preservation of our own people. That is the real end; and the teaching of history is only a means to attain this end. But here again the means has superseded the end in our contemporary education. The goal is completely forgotten. Do not reply that a profound study of history demands a detailed knowledge of all these dates because otherwise we could not fix the great lines of development. That task belongs to the professional historians. But the average man is not a professor of history. For him history has only one mission and that is to provide him with such an amount of historical knowledge as is necessary in order to enable him to form an independent opinion on the political affairs of his own country. The man who wants to become a professor of history can devote himself to all the details later on. Naturally he will have to occupy himself even with the smallest details. Of course our present teaching of history is not adequate to all this. Its scope is too vast for the average student and too limited for the student who wishes to be an historical expert.
Finally, it is the business of the People's State to arrange for the writing of a world history in which the race problem will occupy a dominant position.
To sum up: The People's State must reconstruct our system of general instruction in such a way that it will embrace only what is essential. Beyond this it will have to make provision for a more advanced teaching in the various subjects for those who want to specialize in them. It will suffice for the average individual to be acquainted with the fundamentals of the various subjects to serve as the basis of what may be called an all-round education. He ought to study exhaustively and in detail only that subject in which he intends to work during the rest of his life. A general instruction in all subjects should be obligatory, and specialization should be left to the choice of the individual.
In this way the scholastic programme would be shortened, and thus several school hours would be gained which could be utilized for physical training and character training, in will-power, the capacity for making practical judgments, decisions, etc.
The little account taken by our school training today, especially in the secondary schools, of the callings that have to be followed in after life is demonstrated by the fact that men who are destined for the same calling in life are educated in three different kinds of schools. What is of decisive importance is general education only and not the special teaching. When special knowledge is needed it cannot be given in the curriculum of our secondary schools as they stand today.
Therefore the People's State will one day have to abolish such half-measures.
The second modification in the curriculum which the People's State will have to make is the following:
It is a characteristic of our materialistic epoch that our scientific education shows a growing emphasis on what is real and practical: such subjects, for instance, as applied mathematics, physics, chemistry, etc. Of course they are necessary in an age that is dominated by industrial technology and chemistry, and where everyday life shows at least the external manifestations of these. But it is a perilous thing to base the general culture of a nation on the knowledge of these subjects. On the contrary, that general culture ought always to be directed towards ideals. It ought to be founded on the humanist disciplines and should aim at giving only the ground work of further specialized instruction in the various practical sciences. Otherwise we should sacrifice those forces that are more important for the preservation of the nation than any technical knowledge. In the historical department the study of ancient history should not be omitted. Roman history, along general lines, is and will remain the best teacher, not only for our own time but also for the future. And the ideal of Hellenic culture should be preserved for us in all its marvellous beauty. The differences between the various peoples should not prevent us from recognizing the community of race which unites them on a higher plane. The conflict of our times is one that is being waged around great objectives. A civilization is fighting for its existence. It is a civilization that is the product of thousands of years of historical development, and the Greek as well as the German forms part of it.
A clear-cut division must be made between general culture and the special branches. To-day the latter threaten more and more to devote themselves exclusively to the service of Mammon. To counterbalance this tendency, general culture should be preserved, at least in its ideal forms. The principle should be repeatedly emphasized, that industrial and technical progress, trade and commerce, can flourish only so long as a folk community exists whose general system of thought is inspired by ideals, since that is the preliminary condition for a flourishing development of the enterprises I have spoken of. That condition is not created by a spirit of materialist egotism but by a spirit of self-denial and the joy of giving one's self in the service of others.
The system of education which prevails today sees its principal object in pumping into young people that knowledge which will help them to make their way in life. This principle is expressed in the following terms: "The young man must one day become a useful member of human society." By that phrase they mean the ability to gain an honest daily livelihood. The superficial training in the duties of good citizenship, which he acquires merely as an accidental thing, has very weak foundations. For in itself the State represents only a form, and therefore it is difficult to train people to look upon this form as the ideal which they will have to serve and towards which they must feel responsible. A form can be too easily broken. But, as we have seen, the idea which people have of the State today does not represent anything clearly defined. Therefore, there is nothing but the usual stereotyped 'patriotic' training. In the old Germany the greatest emphasis was placed on the divine right of the small and even the smallest potentates. The way in which this divine right was formulated and presented was never very clever and often very stupid. Because of the large numbers of those small potentates, it was impossible to give adequate biographical accounts of the really great personalities that shed their lustre on the history of the German people. The result was that the broad masses received a very inadequate knowledge of German history. Here, too, the great lines of development were missing.
It is evident that in such a way no real national enthusiasm could be aroused. Our educational system proved incapable of selecting from the general mass of our historical personages the names of a few personalities which the German people could be proud to look upon as their own. Thus the whole nation might have been united by the ties of a common knowledge of this common heritage. The really important figures in German history were not presented to the present generation. The attention of the whole nation was not concentrated on them for the purpose of awakening a common national spirit. From the various subjects that were taught, those who had charge of our training seemed incapable of selecting what redounded most to the national honour and lifting that above the common objective level, in order to inflame the national pride in the light of such brilliant examples. At that time such a course would have been looked upon as rank chauvinism, which did not then have a very pleasant savour. Pettifogging dynastic patriotism was more acceptable and more easily tolerated than the glowing fire of a supreme national pride. The former could be always pressed into service, whereas the latter might one day become a dominating force. Monarchist patriotism terminated in Associations of Veterans, whereas passionate national patriotism might have opened a road which would be difficult to determine. This national passion is like a highly tempered thoroughbred who is discriminate about the sort of rider he will tolerate in the saddle. No wonder that most people preferred to shirk such a danger. Nobody seemed to think it possible that one day a war might come which would put the mettle of this kind of patriotism to the test, in artillery bombardment and waves of attacks with poison gas. But when it did come our lack of this patriotic passion was avenged in a terrible way. None were very enthusiastic about dying for their imperial and royal sovereigns; while on the other hand the 'Nation' was not recognized by the greater number of the soldiers.
Since the revolution broke out in Germany and the monarchist patriotism was therefore extinguished, the purpose of teaching history was nothing more than to add to the stock of objective knowledge. The present State has no use for patriotic enthusiasm; but it will never obtain what it really desires. For if dynastic patriotism failed to produce a supreme power of resistance at a time when the principle of nationalism dominated, it will be still less possible to arouse republican enthusiasm. There can be no doubt that the German people would not have stood on the field of battle for four and a half years to fight under the battle slogan 'For the Republic,' and least of all those who created this grand institution.
In reality this Republic has been allowed to exist undisturbed only by grace of its readiness and its promise to all and sundry, to pay tribute and reparations to the stranger and to put its signature to any kind of territorial renunciation. The rest of the world finds it sympathetic, just as a weakling is always more pleasing to those who want to bend him to their own uses than is a man who is made of harder metal. But the fact that the enemy likes this form of government is the worst kind of condemnation. They love the German Republic and tolerate its existence because no better instrument could be found which would help them to keep our people in slavery. It is to this fact alone that this magnanimous institution owes its survival. And that is why it can renounce any real system of national education and can feel satisfied when the heroes of the Reich banner shout their hurrahs, but in reality these same heroes would scamper away like rabbits if called upon to defend that banner with their blood.
The People's State will have to fight for its existence. It will not gain or secure this existence by signing documents like that of the Dawes Plan. But for its existence and defence it will need precisely those things which our present system believes can be repudiated. The more worthy its form and its inner national being. the greater will be the envy and opposition of its adversaries. The best defence will not be in the arms it possesses but in its citizens. Bastions of fortresses will not save it, but the living wall of its men and women, filled with an ardent love for their country and a passionate spirit of national patriotism.
Therefore the third point which will have to be considered in relation to our educational system is the following:
The People's State must realize that the sciences may also be made a means of promoting a spirit of pride in the nation. Not only the history of the world but the history of civilization as a whole must be taught in the light of this principle. An inventor must appear great not only as an inventor but also, and even more so, as a member of the nation. The admiration aroused by the contemplation of a great achievement must be transformed into a feeling of pride and satisfaction that a man of one's own race has been chosen to accomplish it. But out of the abundance of great names in German history the greatest will have to be selected and presented to our young generation in such a way as to become solid pillars of strength to support the national spirit.
The subject matter ought to be systematically organized from the standpoint of this principle. And the teaching should be so orientated that the boy or girl, after leaving school, will not be a semi-pacifist, a democrat or of something else of that kind, but a whole-hearted German. So that this national feeling be sincere from the very beginning, and not a mere pretence, the following fundamental and inflexible principle should be impressed on the young brain while it is yet malleable: The man who loves his nation can prove the sincerity of this sentiment only by being ready to make sacrifices for the nation's welfare. There is no such thing as a national sentiment which is directed towards personal interests. And there is no such thing as a nationalism that embraces only certain classes. Hurrahing proves nothing and does not confer the right to call oneself national if behind that shout there is no sincere preoccupation for the conservation of the nation's well-being. One can be proud of one's people only if there is no class left of which one need to be ashamed. When one half of a nation is sunk in misery and worn out by hard distress, or even depraved or degenerate, that nation presents such an unattractive picture that nobody can feel proud to belong to it. It is only when a nation is sound in all its members, physically and morally, that the joy of belonging to it can properly be intensified to the supreme feeling which we call national pride. But this pride, in its highest form, can be felt only by those who know the greatness of their nation.
The spirit of nationalism and a feeling for social justice must be fused into one sentiment in the hearts of the youth. Then a day will come when a nation of citizens will arise which will be welded together through a common love and a common pride that shall be invincible and indestructible for ever.
The dread of chauvinism, which is a symptom of our time, is a sign of its impotence. Since our epoch not only lacks everything in the nature of exuberant energy but even finds such a manifestation disagreeable, fate will never elect it for the accomplishment of any great deeds. For the greatest changes that have taken place on this earth would have been inconceivable if they had not been inspired by ardent and even hysterical passions, but only by the bourgeois virtues of peacefulness and order.
One thing is certain: our world is facing a great revolution. The only question is whether the outcome will be propitious for the Aryan portion of mankind or whether the everlasting Jew will profit by it.
By educating the young generation along the right lines, the People's State will have to see to it that a generation of mankind is formed which will be adequate to this supreme combat that will decide the destinies of the world.
That nation will conquer which will be the first to take this road.
The whole organization of education and training which the People's State is to build up must take as its crowning task the work of instilling into the hearts and brains of the youth entrusted to it the racial instinct and understanding of the racial idea. No boy or girl must leave school without having attained a clear insight into the meaning of racial purity and the importance of maintaining the racial blood unadulterated. Thus the first indispensable condition for the preservation of our race will have been established and thus the future cultural progress of our people will be assured.
For in the last analysis all physical and mental training would be in vain unless it served an entity which is ready and determined to carry on its own existence and maintain its own characteristic qualities.
If it were otherwise, something would result which we Germans have cause to regret already, without perhaps having hitherto recognized the extent of the tragic calamity. We should be doomed to remain also in the future only manure for civilization. And that not in the banal sense of the contemporary bourgeois mind, which sees in a lost fellow member of our people only a lost citizen, but in a sense which we should have painfully to recognize: namely, that our racial blood would be destined to disappear. By continually mixing with other races we might lift them from their former lower level of civilization to a higher grade; but we ourselves should descend for ever from the heights we had reached.
Finally, from the racial standpoint this training also must find its culmination in the military service. The term of military service is to be a final stage of the normal training which the average German receives.
While the People's State attaches the greatest importance to physical and mental training, it has also to consider, and no less importantly, the task of selecting men for the service of the State itself. This important matter is passed over lightly at the present time. Generally the children of parents who are for the time being in higher situations are in their turn considered worthy of a higher education. Here talent plays a subordinate part. But talent can be estimated only relatively. Though in general culture he may be inferior to the city child, a peasant boy may be more talented than the son of a family that has occupied high positions through many generations. But the superior culture of the city child has in itself nothing to do with a greater or lesser degree of talent; for this culture has its roots in the more copious mass of impressions which arise from the more varied education and the surroundings among which this child lives. If the intelligent son of peasant parents were educated from childhood in similar surroundings his intellectual accomplishments would be quite otherwise. In our day there is only one sphere where the family in which a person has been born means less than his innate gifts. That is the sphere of art. Here, where a person cannot just 'learn,' but must have innate gifts that later on may undergo a more or less happy development (in the sense of a wise development of what is already there), money and parental property are of no account. This is a good proof that genius is not necessarily connected with the higher social strata or with wealth. Not rarely the greatest artists come from poor families. And many a boy from the country village has eventually become a celebrated master.
It does not say much for the mental acumen of our time that advantage is not taken of this truth for the sake of our whole intellectual life. The opinion is advanced that this principle, though undoubtedly valid in the field of art, has not the same validity in regard to what are called the applied sciences. It is true that a man can be trained to a certain amount of mechanical dexterity, just as a poodle can be taught incredible tricks by a clever master. But such training does not bring the animal to use his intelligence in order to carry out those tricks. And the same holds good in regard to man. It is possible to teach men, irrespective of talent or no talent, to go through certain scientific exercises, but in such cases the results are quite as inanimate and mechanical as in the case of the animal. It would even be possible to force a person of mediocre intelligence, by means of a severe course of intellectual drilling, to acquire more than the average amount of knowledge; but that knowledge would remain sterile. The result would be a man who might be a walking dictionary of knowledge but who will fail miserably on every critical occasion in life and at every juncture where vital decisions have to be taken. Such people need to be drilled specially for every new and even most insignificant task and will never be capable of contributing in the least to the general progress of mankind. Knowledge that is merely drilled into people can at best qualify them to fill government positions under our present regime.
It goes without saying that, among the sum total of individuals who make up a nation, gifted people are always to be found in every sphere of life. It is also quite natural that the value of knowledge will be all the greater the more vitally the dead mass of learning is animated by the innate talent of the individual who possesses it. Creative work in this field can be done only through the marriage of knowledge and talent.
One example will suffice to show how much our contemporary world is at fault in this matter. From time to time our illustrated papers publish, for the edification of the German philistine, the news that in some quarter or other of the globe, and for the first time in that locality, a Negro has become a lawyer, a teacher, a pastor, even a grand opera tenor or something else of that kind. While the bourgeois blockhead stares with amazed admiration at the notice that tells him how marvellous are the achievements of our modern educational technique, the more cunning Jew sees in this fact a new proof to be utilized for the theory with which he wants to infect the public, namely that all men are equal. It does not dawn on the murky bourgeois mind that the fact which is published for him is a sin against reason itself, that it is an act of criminal insanity to train a being who is only an anthropoid by birth until the pretence can be made that he has been turned into a lawyer; while, on the other hand, millions who belong to the most civilized races have to remain in positions which are unworthy of their cultural level. The bourgeois mind does not realize that it is a sin against the will of the eternal Creator to allow hundreds of thousands of highly gifted people to remain floundering in the swamp of proletarian misery while Hottentots and Zulus are drilled to fill positions in the intellectual professions. For here we have the product only of a drilling technique, just as in the case of the performing dog. If the same amount of care and effort were applied among intelligent races each individual would become a thousand times more capable in such matters.
This state of affairs would become intolerable if a day should arrive when it no longer refers to exceptional cases. But the situation is already intolerable where talent and natural gifts are not taken as decisive factors in qualifying for the right to a higher education. It is indeed intolerable to think that year after year hundreds of thousands of young people without a single vestige of talent are deemed worthy of a higher education, while other hundreds of thousands who possess high natural gifts have to go without any sort of higher schooling at all. The practical loss thus caused to the nation is incalculable. If the number of important discoveries which have been made in America has grown considerably in recent years one of the reasons is that the number of gifted persons belonging to the lowest social classes who were given a higher education in that country is proportionately much larger than in Europe.
A stock of knowledge packed into the brain will not suffice for the making of discoveries. What counts here is only that knowledge which is illuminated by natural talent. But with us at the present time no value is placed on such gifts. Only good school reports count.
Here is another educative work that is waiting for the People's State to do. It will not be its task to assure a dominant influence to a certain social class already existing, but it will be its duty to attract the most competent brains in the total mass of the nation and promote them to place and honour. It is not merely the duty of the State to give to the average child a certain definite education in the primary school, but it is also its duty to open the road to talent in the proper direction. And above all, it must open the doors of the higher schools under the State to talent of every sort, no matter in what social class it may appear. This is an imperative necessity; for thus alone will it be possible to develop a talented body of public leaders from the class which represents learning that in itself is only a dead mass.
There is still another reason why the State should provide for this situation. Our intellectual class, particularly in Germany, is so shut up in itself and fossilized that it lacks living contact with the classes beneath it. Two evil consequences result from this: First, the intellectual class neither understands nor sympathizes with the broad masses. It has been so long cut off from all connection with them that it cannot now have the necessary psychological ties that would enable it to understand them. It has become estranged from the people. Secondly, the intellectual class lacks the necessary will-power; for this faculty is always weaker in cultivated circles, which live in seclusion, than among the primitive masses of the people. God knows we Germans have never been lacking in abundant scientific culture, but we have always had a considerable lack of will-power and the capacity for making decisions. For example, the more 'intellectual' our statesmen have been the more lacking they have been, for the most part, in practical achievement. Our political preparation and our technical equipment for the world war were defective, certainly not because the brains governing the nation were too little educated, but because the men who directed our public affairs were over-educated, filled to over-flowing with knowledge and intelligence, yet without any sound instinct and simply without energy, or any spirit of daring. It was our nation's tragedy to have to fight for its existence under a Chancellor who was a dillydallying philosopher. If instead of a Bethmann von Hollweg we had had a rough man of the people as our leader the heroic blood of the common grenadier would not have been shed in vain. The exaggeratedly intellectual material out of which our leaders were made proved to be the best ally of the scoundrels who carried out the November revolution. These intellectuals safeguarded the national wealth in a miserly fashion, instead of launching it forth and risking it, and thus they set the conditions on which the others won success.
Here the Catholic Church presents an instructive example. Clerical celibacy forces the Church to recruit its priests not from their own ranks but progressively from the masses of the people. Yet there are not many who recognize the significance of celibacy in this relation. But therein lies the cause of the inexhaustible vigour which characterizes that ancient institution. For by thus unceasingly recruiting the ecclesiastical dignitaries from the lower classes of the people, the Church is enabled not only to maintain the contact of instinctive understanding with the masses of the population but also to assure itself of always being able to draw upon that fund of energy which is present in this form only among the popular masses. Hence the surprising youthfulness of that gigantic organism, its mental flexibility and its iron will-power.
It will be the task of the Peoples' State so to organize and administer its educational system that the existing intellectual class will be constantly furnished with a supply of fresh blood from beneath. From the bulk of the nation the State must sift out with careful scrutiny those persons who are endowed with natural talents and see that they are employed in the service of the community. For neither the State itself nor the various departments of State exist to furnish revenues for members of a special class, but to fulfil the tasks allotted to them. This will be possible, however, only if the State trains individuals specially for these offices. Such individuals must have the necessary fundamental capabilities and will-power. The principle does not hold true only in regard to the civil service but also in regard to all those who are to take part in the intellectual and moral leadership of the people, no matter in what sphere they may be employed. The greatness of a people is partly dependent on the condition that it must succeed in training the best brains for those branches of the public service for which they show a special natural aptitude and in placing them in the offices where they can do their best work for the good of the community. If two nations of equal strength and quality engage in a mutual conflict that nation will come out victorious which has entrusted its intellectual and moral leadership to its best talents and that nation will go under whose government represents only a common food trough for privileged groups or classes and where the inner talents of its individual members are not availed of.
Of course such a reform seems impossible in the world as it is today. The objection will at once be raised, that it is too much to expect from the favourite son of a highly-placed civil servant, for instance, that he shall work with his hands simply because somebody else whose parents belong to the working-class seems more capable for a job in the civil service. That argument may be valid as long as manual work is looked upon in the same way as it is looked upon today. Hence the Peoples' State will have to take up an attitude towards the appreciation of manual labour which will be fundamentally different from that which now exists. If necessary, it will have to organize a persistent system of teaching which will aim at abolishing the present-day stupid habit of looking down on physical labour as an occupation to be ashamed of.
The individual will have to be valued, not by the class of work he does but by the way in which he does it and by its usefulness to the community. This statement may sound monstrous in an epoch when the most brainless columnist on a newspaper staff is more esteemed than the most expert mechanic, merely because the former pushes a pen. But, as I have said, this false valuation does not correspond to the nature of things. It has been artificially introduced, and there was a time when it did not exist at all. The present unnatural state of affairs is one of those general morbid phenomena that have arisen from our materialistic epoch. Fundamentally every kind of work has a double value; the one material, the other ideal. The material value depends on the practical importance of the work to the life of the community. The greater the number of the population who benefit from the work, directly or indirectly, the higher will be its material value. This evaluation is expressed in the material recompense which the individual receives for his labour. In contradistinction to this purely material value there is the ideal value. Here the work performed is not judged by its material importance but by the degree to which it answers a necessity. Certainly the material utility of an invention may be greater than that of the service rendered by an everyday workman; but it is also certain that the community needs each of those small daily services just as much as the greater services. From the material point of view a distinction can be made in the evaluation of different kinds of work according to their utility to the community, and this distinction is expressed by the differentiation in the scale of recompense; but on the ideal or abstract plans all workmen become equal the moment each strives to do his best in his own field, no matter what that field may be. It is on this that a man's value must be estimated, and not on the amount of recompense received.
In a reasonably directed State care must be taken that each individual is given the kind of work which corresponds to his capabilities. In other words, people will be trained for the positions indicated by their natural endowments; but these endowments or faculties are innate and cannot be acquired by any amount of training, being a gift from Nature and not merited by men. Therefore, the way in which men are generally esteemed by their fellow-citizens must not be according to the kind of work they do, because that has been more or less assigned to the individual. Seeing that the kind of work in which the individual is employed is to be accounted to his inborn gifts and the resultant training which he has received from the community, he will have to be judged by the way in which he performs this work entrusted to him by the community. For the work which the individual performs is not the purpose of his existence, but only a means. His real purpose in life is to better himself and raise himself to a higher level as a human being; but this he can only do in and through the community whose cultural life he shares. And this community must always exist on the foundations on which the State is based. He ought to contribute to the conservation of those foundations. Nature determines the form of this contribution. It is the duty of the individual to return to the community, zealously and honestly, what the community has given him. He who does this deserves the highest respect and esteem. Material remuneration may be given to him whose work has a corresponding utility for the community; but the ideal recompense must lie in the esteem to which everybody has a claim who serves his people with whatever powers Nature has bestowed upon him and which have been developed by the training he has received from the national community. Then it will no longer be dishonourable to be an honest craftsman; but it will be a cause of disgrace to be an inefficient State official, wasting God's day and filching daily bread from an honest public. Then it will be looked upon as quite natural that positions should not be given to persons who of their very nature are incapable of filling them.
Furthermore, this personal efficiency will be the sole criterion of the right to take part on an equal juridical footing in general civil affairs.
The present epoch is working out its own ruin. It introduces universal suffrage, chatters about equal rights but can find no foundation for this equality. It considers the material wage as the expression of a man's value and thus destroys the basis of the noblest kind of equality that can exist. For equality cannot and does not depend on the work a man does, but only on the manner in which each one does the particular work allotted to him. Thus alone will mere natural chance be set aside in determining the work of a man and thus only does the individual become the artificer of his own social worth.
At the present time, when whole groups of people estimate each other's value only by the size of the salaries which they respectively receive, there will be no understanding of all this. But that is no reason why we should cease to champion those ideas. Quite the opposite: in an epoch which is inwardly diseased and decaying anyone who would heal it must have the courage first to lay bare the real roots of the disease. And the National Socialist Movement must take that duty on its shoulders. It will have to lift its voice above the heads of the small bourgeoisie and rally together and co-ordinate all those popular forces which are ready to become the protagonists of a new philosophy of life.
Of course the objection will be made that in general it is difficult to differentiate between the material and ideal values of work and that the lower prestige which is attached to physical labour is due to the fact that smaller wages are paid for that kind of work. It will be said that the lower wage is in its turn the reason why the manual worker has less chance to participate in the culture of the nation; so that the ideal side of human culture is less open to him because it has nothing to do with his daily activities. It may be added that the reluctance to do physical work is justified by the fact that, on account of the small income, the cultural level of manual labourers must naturally be low, and that this in turn is a justification for the lower estimation in which manual labour is generally held.
There is quite a good deal of truth in all this. But that is the very reason why we ought to see that in the future there should not be such a wide difference in the scale of remuneration. Don't say that under such conditions poorer work would be done. It would be the saddest symptom of decadence if finer intellectual work could be obtained only through the stimulus of higher payment. If that point of view had ruled the world up to now humanity would never have acquired its greatest scientific and cultural heritage. For all the greatest inventions, the greatest discoveries, the most profoundly revolutionary scientific work, and the most magnificent monuments of human culture, were never given to the world under the impulse or compulsion of money. Quite the contrary: not rarely was their origin associated with a renunciation of the worldly pleasures that wealth can purchase.
It may be that money has become the one power that governs life today. Yet a time will come when men will again bow to higher gods. Much that we have today owes its existence to the desire for money and property; but there is very little among all this which would leave the world poorer by its lack.
It is also one of the aims before our movement to hold out the prospect of a time when the individual will be given what he needs for the purposes of his life and it will be a time in which, on the other hand, the principle will be upheld that man does not live for material enjoyment alone. This principle will find expression in a wiser scale of wages and salaries which will enable everyone, including the humblest workman who fulfils his duties conscientiously, to live an honourable and decent life both as a man and as a citizen. Let it not be said that this is merely a visionary ideal, that this world would never tolerate it in practice and that of itself it is impossible to attain.
Even we are not so simple as to believe that there will ever be an age in which there will be no drawbacks. But that does not release us from the obligation to fight for the removal of the defects which we have recognized, to overcome the shortcomings and to strive towards the ideal. In any case the hard reality of the facts to be faced will always place only too many limits to our aspirations. But that is precisely why man must strive again and again to serve the ultimate aim and no failures must induce him to renounce his intentions, just as we cannot spurn the sway of justice because mistakes creep into the administration of the law, and just as we cannot despise medical science because, in spite of it, there will always be diseases.
Man should take care not to have too low an estimate of the power of an ideal. If there are some who may feel disheartened over the present conditions, and if they happen to have served as soldiers, I would remind them of the time when their heroism was the most convincing example of the power inherent in ideal motives. It was not preoccupation about their daily bread that led men to sacrifice their lives, but the love of their country, the faith which they had in its greatness, and an all round feeling for the honour of the nation. Only after the German people had become estranged from these ideals, to follow the material promises offered by the Revolution, only after they threw away their arms to take up the rucksack, only then – instead of entering an earthly paradise – did they sink into the purgatory of universal contempt and at the same time universal want.
That is why we must face the calculators of the materialist Republic with faith in an idealist Reich.


Chapter III: Subjects and Citizens

The institution that is now erroneously called the State generally classifies people only into two groups: citizens and aliens. Citizens are all those who possess full civic rights, either by reason of their birth or by an act of naturalization. Aliens are those who enjoy the same rights in some other State. Between these two categories there are certain beings who resemble a sort of meteoric phenomena. They are people who have no citizenship in any State and consequently no civic rights anywhere.
In most cases nowadays a person acquires civic rights by being born within the frontiers of a State. The race or nationality to which he may belong plays no role whatsoever. The child of a Negro who once lived in one of the German protectorates and now takes up his residence in Germany automatically becomes a 'German Citizen' in the eyes of the world. In the same way the child of any Jew, Pole, African or Asian may automatically become a German Citizen.
Besides naturalization that is acquired through the fact of having been born within the confines of a State there exists another kind of naturalization which can be acquired later. This process is subject to various preliminary requirements. For example one condition is that, if possible, the applicant must not be a burglar or a common street thug. It is required of him that his political attitude is not such as to give cause for uneasiness; in other words he must be a harmless simpleton in politics. It is required that he shall not be a burden to the State of which he wishes to become a citizen. In this realistic epoch of ours this last condition naturally only means that he must not be a financial burden. If the affairs of the candidate are such that it appears likely he will turn out to be a good taxpayer, that is a very important consideration and will help him to obtain civic rights all the more rapidly.
The question of race plays no part at all.
The whole process of acquiring civic rights is not very different from that of being admitted to membership of an automobile club, for instance. A person files his application. It is examined. It is sanctioned. And one day the man receives a card which informs him that he has become a citizen. The information is given in an amusing way. An applicant who has hitherto been a Zulu or Kaffir is told: "By these presents you are now become a German Citizen."
The President of the State can perform this piece of magic. What God Himself could not do is achieved by some Theophrastus Paracelsus of a civil servant through a mere twirl of the hand. Nothing but a stroke of the pen, and a Mongolian slave is forthwith turned into a real German. Not only is no question asked regarding the race to which the new citizen belongs; even the matter of his physical health is not inquired into. His flesh may be corrupted with syphilis; but he will still be welcome in the State as it exists today so long as he may not become a financial burden or a political danger.
In this way, year after year, those organisms which we call States take up poisonous matter which they can hardly ever overcome.
Another point of distinction between a citizen and an alien is that the former is admitted to all public offices, that he may possibly have to do military service and that in return he is permitted to take a passive or active part at public elections. Those are his chief privileges. For in regard to personal rights and personal liberty the alien enjoys the same amount of protection as the citizen, and frequently even more. Anyhow that is how it happens in our present German Republic.
I realize fully that nobody likes to hear these things. But it would be difficult to find anything more illogical or more insane than our contemporary laws in regard to State citizenship.
At present there exists one State which manifests at least some modest attempts that show a better appreciation of how things ought to be done in this matter. It is not, however, in our model German Republic but in the U.S.A. that efforts are made to conform at least partly to the counsels of commonsense. By refusing immigrants to enter there if they are in a bad state of health, and by excluding certain races from the right to become naturalized as citizens, they have begun to introduce principles similar to those on which we wish to ground the People's State.
The People's State will classify its population in three groups: Citizens, subjects of the State, and aliens.
The principle is that birth within the confines of the State gives only the status of a subject. It does not carry with it the right to fill any position under the State or to participate in political life, such as taking an active or passive part in elections. Another principle is that the race and nationality of every subject of the State will have to be proved. A subject is at any time free to cease being a subject and to become a citizen of that country to which he belongs in virtue of his nationality. The only difference between an alien and a subject of the State is that the former is a citizen of another country.
The young boy or girl who is of German nationality and is a subject of the German State is bound to complete the period of school education which is obligatory for every German. Thereby he submits to the system of training which will make him conscious of his race and a member of the folk-community. Then he has to fulfil all those requirements laid down by the State in regard to physical training after he has left school; and finally he enters the army. The training in the army is of a general kind. It must be given to each individual German and will render him competent to fulfil the physical and mental requirements of military service. The rights of citizenship shall be conferred on every young man whose health and character have been certified as good, after having completed his period of military service. This act of inauguration in citizenship shall be a solemn ceremony. And the diploma conferring the rights of citizenship will be preserved by the young man as the most precious testimonial of his whole life. It entitles him to exercise all the rights of a citizen and to enjoy all the privileges attached thereto. For the State must draw a sharp line of distinction between those who, as members of the nation, are the foundation and the support of its existence and greatness, and those who are domiciled in the State simply as earners of their livelihood there.
On the occasion of conferring a diploma of citizenship the new citizen must take a solemn oath of loyalty to the national community and the State. This diploma must be a bond which unites together all the various classes and sections of the nation. It shall be a greater honour to be a citizen of this Reich, even as a street-sweeper, than to be the King of a foreign State.
The citizen has privileges which are not accorded to the alien. He is the master in the Reich. But this high honour has also its obligations. Those who show themselves without personal honour or character, or common criminals, or traitors to the fatherland, can at any time be deprived of the rights of citizenship. Therewith they become merely subjects of the State.
The German girl is a subject of the State but will become a citizen when she marries. At the same time those women who earn their livelihood independently have the right to acquire citizenship if they are German subjects.


Chapter IV: Personality and the Conception of the Folkish State

If the principal duty of the National Socialist People's State be to educate and promote the existence of those who are the material out of which the State is formed, it will not be sufficient to promote those racial elements as such, educate them and finally train them for practical life, but the State must also adapt its own organization to meet the demands of this task.
It would be absurd to appraise a man's worth by the race to which he belongs and at the same time to make war against the Marxist principle, that all men are equal, without being determined to pursue our own principle to its ultimate consequences. If we admit the significance of blood, that is to say, if we recognize the race as the fundamental element on which all life is based, we shall have to apply to the individual the logical consequences of this principle. In general I must estimate the worth of nations differently, on the basis of the different races from which they spring, and I must also differentiate in estimating the worth of the individual within his own race. The principle, that one people is not the same as another, applies also to the individual members of a national community. No one brain, for instance, is equal to another; because the constituent elements belonging to the same blood vary in a thousand subtle details, though they are fundamentally of the same quality.
The first consequence of this fact is comparatively simple. It demands that those elements within the folk-community which show the best racial qualities ought to be encouraged more than the others and especially they should be encouraged to increase and multiply.
This task is comparatively simple because it can be recognized and carried out almost mechanically. It is much more difficult to select from among a whole multitude of people all those who actually possess the highest intellectual and spiritual characteristics and assign them to that sphere of influence which not only corresponds to their outstanding talents but in which their activities will above all things be of benefit to the nation. This selection according to capacity and efficiency cannot be effected in a mechanical way. It is a work which can be accomplished only through the permanent struggle of everyday life itself.
A philosophy of life which repudiates the democratic principle of the rule of the masses and aims at giving this world to the best people – that is, to the highest quality of mankind – must also apply that same aristocratic postulate to the individuals within the folk-community. It must take care that the positions of leadership and highest influence are given to the best men. Hence it is not based on the idea of the majority, but on that of personality.
Anyone who believes that the People's National Socialist State should distinguish itself from the other States only mechanically, as it were, through the better construction of its economic life – thanks to a better equilibrium between poverty and riches, or to the extension to broader masses of the power to determine the economic process, or to a fairer wage, or to the elimination of vast differences in the scale of salaries – anyone who thinks this understands only the superficial features of our movement and has not the least idea of what we mean when we speak of our Weltanschhauung. All these features just mentioned could not in the least guarantee us a lasting existence and certainly would be no warranty of greatness. A nation that could content itself with external reforms would not have the slightest chance of success in the general struggle for life among the nations of the world. A movement that would confine its mission to such adjustments, which are certainly right and equitable, would effect no far-reaching or profound reform in the existing order. The whole effect of such measures would be limited to externals. They would not furnish the nation with that moral armament which alone will enable it effectively to overcome the weaknesses from which we are suffering today.
In order to elucidate this point of view it may be worth while to glance once again at the real origins and causes of the cultural evolution of mankind.
The first step which visibly brought mankind away from the animal world was that which led to the first invention. The invention itself owes its origin to the ruses and stratagems which man employed to assist him in the struggle with other creatures for his existence and often to provide him with the only means he could adopt to achieve success in the struggle. Those first very crude inventions cannot be attributed to the individual; for the subsequent observer, that is to say the modern observer, recognizes them only as collective phenomena. Certain tricks and skilful tactics which can be observed in use among the animals strike the eye of the observer as established facts which may be seen everywhere; and man is no longer in a position to discover or explain their primary cause and so he contents himself with calling such phenomena 'instinctive.'
In our case this term has no meaning. Because everyone who believes in the higher evolution of living organisms must admit that every manifestation of the vital urge and struggle to live must have had a definite beginning in time and that one subject alone must have manifested it for the first time. It was then repeated again and again; and the practice of it spread over a widening area, until finally it passed into the subconscience of every member of the species, where it manifested itself as 'instinct.'
This is more easily understood and more easy to believe in the case of man. His first skilled tactics in the struggle with the rest of the animals undoubtedly originated in his management of creatures which possessed special capabilities.
There can be no doubt that personality was then the sole factor in all decisions and achievements, which were afterwards taken over by the whole of humanity as a matter of course. An exact exemplification of this may be found in those fundamental military principles which have now become the basis of all strategy in war. Originally they sprang from the brain of a single individual and in the course of many years, maybe even thousands of years, they were accepted all round as a matter of course and this gained universal validity.
Man completed his first discovery by making a second. Among other things he learned how to master other living beings and make them serve him in his struggle for existence. And thus began the real inventive activity of mankind, as it is now visible before our eyes. Those material inventions, beginning with the use of stones as weapons, which led to the domestication of animals, the production of fire by artificial means, down to the marvellous inventions of our own days, show clearly that an individual was the originator in each case. The nearer we come to our own time and the more important and revolutionary the inventions become, the more clearly do we recognize the truth of that statement. All the material inventions which we see around us have been produced by the creative powers and capabilities of individuals. And all these inventions help man to raise himself higher and higher above the animal world and to separate himself from that world in an absolutely definite way. Hence they serve to elevate the human species and continually to promote its progress. And what the most primitive artifice once did for man in his struggle for existence, as he went hunting through the primeval forest, that same sort of assistance is rendered him today in the form of marvellous scientific inventions which help him in the present day struggle for life and to forge weapons for future struggles. In their final consequences all human thought and invention help man in his life-struggle on this planet, even though the so-called practical utility of an invention, a discovery or a profound scientific theory, may not be evident at first sight. Everything contributes to raise man higher and higher above the level of all the other creatures that surround him, thereby strengthening and consolidating his position; so that he develops more and more in every direction as the ruling being on this earth.
Hence all inventions are the result of the creative faculty of the individual. And all such individuals, whether they have willed it or not, are the benefactors of mankind, both great and small. Through their work millions and indeed billions of human beings have been provided with means and resources which facilitate their struggle for existence.
Thus at the origin of the material civilization which flourishes today we always see individual persons. They supplement one another and one of them bases his work on that of the other. The same is true in regard to the practical application of those inventions and discoveries. For all the various methods of production are in their turn inventions also and consequently dependent on the creative faculty of the individual. Even the purely theoretical work, which cannot be measured by a definite rule and is preliminary to all subsequent technical discoveries, is exclusively the product of the individual brain. The broad masses do not invent, nor does the majority organize or think; but always and in every case the individual man, the person.
Accordingly a human community is well organized only when it facilitates to the highest possible degree individual creative forces and utilizes their work for the benefit of the community. The most valuable factor of an invention, whether it be in the world of material realities or in the world of abstract ideas, is the personality of the inventor himself. The first and supreme duty of an organized folk community is to place the inventor in a position where he can be of the greatest benefit to all. Indeed the very purpose of the organization is to put this principle into practice. Only by so doing can it ward off the curse of mechanization and remain a living thing. In itself it must personify the effort to place men of brains above the multitude and to make the latter obey the former.
Therefore not only does the organization possess no right to prevent men of brains from rising above the multitude but, on the contrary, it must use its organizing powers to enable and promote that ascension as far as it possibly can. It must start out from the principle that the blessings of mankind never came from the masses but from the creative brains of individuals, who are therefore the real benefactors of humanity. It is in the interest of all to assure men of creative brains a decisive influence and facilitate their work. This common interest is surely not served by allowing the multitude to rule, for they are not capable of thinking nor are they efficient and in no case whatsoever can they be said to be gifted. Only those should rule who have the natural temperament and gifts of leadership.
Such men of brains are selected mainly, as I have already said, through the hard struggle for existence itself. In this struggle there are many who break down and collapse and thereby show that they are not called by Destiny to fill the highest positions; and only very few are left who can be classed among the elect. In the realm of thought and of artistic creation, and even in the economic field, this same process of selection takes place, although – especially in the economic field – its operation is heavily handicapped. This same principle of selection rules in the administration of the State and in that department of power which personifies the organized military defence of the nation. The idea of personality rules everywhere, the authority of the individual over his subordinates and the responsibility of the individual towards the persons who are placed over him. It is only in political life that this very natural principle has been completely excluded. Though all human civilization has resulted exclusively from the creative activity of the individual, the principle that it is the mass which counts – through the decision of the majority – makes its appearance only in the administration of the national community especially in the higher grades; and from there downwards the poison gradually filters into all branches of national life, thus causing a veritable decomposition. The destructive workings of Judaism in different parts of the national body can be ascribed fundamentally to the persistent Jewish efforts at undermining the importance of personality among the nations that are their hosts and, in place of personality, substituting the domination of the masses. The constructive principle of Aryan humanity is thus displaced by the destructive principle of the Jews, They become the 'ferment of decomposition' among nations and races and, in a broad sense, the wreckers of human civilization.
Marxism represents the most striking phase of the Jewish endeavour to eliminate the dominant significance of personality in every sphere of human life and replace it by the numerical power of the masses. In politics the parliamentary form of government is the expression of this effort. We can observe the fatal effects of it everywhere, from the smallest parish council upwards to the highest governing circles of the nation. In the field of economics we see the trade union movement, which does not serve the real interests of the employees but the destructive aims of international Jewry. Just to the same degree in which the principle of personality is excluded from the economic life of the nation, and the influence and activities of the masses substituted in its stead, national economy, which should be for the service and benefit of the community as a whole, will gradually deteriorate in its creative capacity. The shop committees which, instead of caring for the interests of the employees, strive to influence the process of production, serve the same destructive purpose. They damage the general productive system and consequently injure the individual engaged in industry. For in the long run it is impossible to satisfy popular demands merely by high-sounding theoretical phrases. These can be satisfied only by supplying goods to meet the individual needs of daily life and by so doing create the conviction that, through the productive collaboration of its members, the folk community serves the interests of the individual.
Even if, on the basis of its mass-theory, Marxism should prove itself capable of taking over and developing the present economic system, that would not signify anything. The question as to whether the Marxist doctrine be right or wrong cannot be decided by any test which would show that it can administer for the future what already exists today, but only by asking whether it has the creative power to build up according to its own principles a civilization which would be a counterpart of what already exists. Even if Marxism were a thousandfold capable of taking over the economic life as we now have it and maintaining it in operation under Marxist direction, such an achievement would prove nothing; because, on the basis of its own principles, Marxism would never be able to create something which could supplant what exists today.
And Marxism itself has furnished the proof that it cannot do this. Not only has it been unable anywhere to create a cultural or economic system of its own; but it was not even able to develop, according to its own principles, the civilization and economic system it found ready at hand. It has had to make compromises, by way of a return to the principle of personality, just as it cannot dispense with that principle in its own organization.
The folkish philosophy is fundamentally distinguished from the Marxist by reason of the fact that the former recognizes the significance of race and therefore also personal worth and has made these the pillars of its structure. These are the most important factors of its view of life.
If the National Socialist Movement should fail to understand the fundamental importance of this essential principle, if it should merely varnish the external appearance of the present State and adopt the majority principle, it would really do nothing more than compete with Marxism on its own ground. For that reason it would not have the right to call itself a philosophy of life. If the social programme of the movement consisted in eliminating personality and putting the multitude in its place, then National Socialism would be corrupted with the poison of Marxism, just as our national-bourgeois parties are.
The People's State must assure the welfare of its citizens by recognizing the importance of personal values under all circumstances and by preparing the way for the maximum of productive efficiency in all the various branches of economic life, thus securing to the individual the highest possible share in the general output.
Hence the People's State must mercilessly expurgate from all the leading circles in the government of the country the parliamentarian principle, according to which decisive power through the majority vote is invested in the multitude. Personal responsibility must be substituted in its stead.
From this the following conclusion results:
The best constitution and the best form of government is that which makes it quite natural for the best brains to reach a position of dominant importance and influence in the community.
Just as in the field of economics men of outstanding ability cannot be designated from above but must come forward in virtue of their own efforts, and just as there is an unceasing educative process that leads from the smallest shop to the largest undertaking, and just as life itself is the school in which those lessons are taught, so in the political field it is not possible to 'discover' political talent all in a moment. Genius of an extraordinary stamp is not to be judged by normal standards whereby we judge other men.
In its organization the State must be established on the principle of personality, starting from the smallest cell and ascending up to the supreme government of the country.
There are no decisions made by the majority vote, but only by responsible persons. And the word 'council' is once more restored to its original meaning. Every man in a position of responsibility will have councillors at his side, but the decision is made by that individual person alone.
The principle which made the former Prussian Army an admirable instrument of the German nation will have to become the basis of our statal constitution, that is to say, full authority over his subordinates must be invested in each leader and he must be responsible to those above him.
Even then we shall not be able to do without those corporations which at present we call parliaments. But they will be real councils, in the sense that they will have to give advice. The responsibility can and must be borne by one individual, who alone will be vested with authority and the right to command.
Parliaments as such are necessary because they alone furnish the opportunity for leaders to rise gradually who will be entrusted subsequently with positions of special responsibility.
The following is an outline of the picture which the organization will present:
From the municipal administration up to the government of the Reich, the People's State will not have any body of representatives which makes its decisions through the majority vote. It will have only advisory bodies to assist the chosen leader for the time being and he will distribute among them the various duties they are to perform. In certain fields they may, if necessary, have to assume full responsibility, such as the leader or president of each corporation possesses on a larger scale.
In principle the People's State must forbid the custom of taking advice on certain political problems – economics, for instance – from persons who are entirely incompetent because they lack special training and practical experience in such matters. Consequently the State must divide its representative bodies into a political chamber and a corporative chamber that represents the respective trades and professions.
To assure an effective co-operation between those two bodies, a selected body will be placed over them. This will be a special senate.
No vote will be taken in the chambers or senate. They are to be organizations for work and not voting machines. The individual members will have consultive votes but no right of decision will be attached thereto. The right of decision belongs exclusively to the president, who must be entirely responsible for the matter under discussion.
This principle of combining absolute authority with absolute responsibility will gradually cause a selected group of leaders to emerge; which is not even thinkable in our present epoch of irresponsible parliamentarianism.
The political construction of the nation will thereby be brought into harmony with those laws to which the nation already owes its greatness in the economic and cultural spheres.
Regarding the possibility of putting these principles into practice, I should like to call attention to the fact that the principle of parliamentarian democracy, whereby decisions are enacted through the majority vote, has not always ruled the world. On the contrary, we find it prevalent only during short periods of history, and those have always been periods of decline in nations and States.
One must not believe, however, that such a radical change could be effected by measures of a purely theoretical character, operating from above downwards; for the change I have been describing could not be limited to transforming the constitution of a State but would have to include the various fields of legislation and civic existence as a whole. Such a revolution can be brought about only by means of a movement which is itself organized under the inspiration of these principles and thus bears the germ of the future State in its own organism.
Therefore it is well for the National Socialist Movement to make itself completely familiar with those principles today and actually to put them into practice within its own organization, so that not only will it be in a position to serve as a guide for the future State but will have its own organization such that it can subsequently be placed at the disposal of the State itself.

Chapter V: Philosophy and Organization

The People's State, which I have tried to sketch in general outline, will not become a reality in virtue of the simple fact that we know the indispensable conditions of its existence. It does not suffice to know what aspect such a State would present. The problem of its foundation is far more important. The parties which exist at present and which draw their profits from the State as it now is cannot be expected to bring about a radical change in the regime or to change their attitude on their own initiative. This is rendered all the more impossible because the forces which now have the direction of affairs in their hands are Jews here and Jews there and Jews everywhere. The trend of development which we are now experiencing would, if allowed to go on unhampered, lead to the realization of the Pan-Jewish prophecy that the Jews will one day devour the other nations and become lords of the earth.
In contrast to the millions of 'bourgeois' and 'proletarian' Germans, who are stumbling to their ruin, mostly through timidity, indolence and stupidity, the Jew pursues his way persistently and keeps his eye always fixed on his future goal. Any party that is led by him can fight for no other interests than his, and his interests certainly have nothing in common with those of the Aryan nations.
If we would transform our ideal picture of the People's State into a reality we shall have to keep independent of the forces that now control public life and seek for new forces that will be ready and capable of taking up the fight for such an ideal. For a fight it will have to be, since the first objective will not be to build up the idea of the People's State but rather to wipe out the Jewish State which is now in existence. As so often happens in the course of history, the main difficulty is not to establish a new order of things but to clear the ground for its establishment. Prejudices and egotistic interests join together in forming a common front against the new idea and in trying by every means to prevent its triumph, because it is disagreeable to them or threatens their existence.
That is why the protagonist of the new idea is unfortunately, in spite of his desire for constructive work, compelled to wage a destructive battle first, in order to abolish the existing state of affairs.
A doctrine whose principles are radically new and of essential importance must adopt the sharp probe of criticism as its weapon, though this may show itself disagreeable to the individual followers.
It is evidence of a very superficial insight into historical developments if the so-called folkists emphasize again and again that they will adopt the use of negative criticism under no circumstances but will engage only in constructive work. That is nothing but puerile chatter and is typical of the whole lot of folkists. It is another proof that the history of our own times has made no impression on these minds. Marxism too has had its aims to pursue and it also recognizes constructive work, though by this it understands only the establishment of despotic rule in the hands of international Jewish finance. Nevertheless for seventy years its principal work still remains in the field of criticism. And what disruptive and destructive criticism it has been! Criticism repeated again and again, until the corrosive acid ate into the old State so thoroughly that it finally crumbled to pieces. Only then did the so-called 'constructive' critical work of Marxism begin. And that was natural, right and logical. An existing order of things is not abolished by merely proclaiming and insisting on a new one. It must not be hoped that those who are the partisans of the existing order and have their interests bound up with it will be converted and won over to the new movement simply by being shown that something new is necessary. On the contrary, what may easily happen is that two different situations will exist side by side and that the-called philosophy is transformed into a party, above which level it will not be able to raise itself afterwards. For the philosophy is intolerant and cannot permit another to exist side by side with it. It imperiously demands its own recognition as unique and exclusive and a complete transformation in accordance with its views throughout all the branches of public life. It can never allow the previous state of affairs to continue in existence by its side.
And the same holds true of religions.
Christianity was not content with erecting an altar of its own. It had first to destroy the pagan altars. It was only in virtue of this passionate intolerance that an apodictic faith could grow up. And intolerance is an indispensable condition for the growth of such a faith.
It may be objected here that in these phenomena which we find throughout the history of the world we have to recognize mostly a specifically Jewish mode of thought and that such fanaticism and intolerance are typical symptoms of Jewish mentality. That may be a thousandfold true; and it is a fact deeply to be regretted. The appearance of intolerance and fanaticism in the history of mankind may be deeply regrettable, and it may be looked upon as foreign to human nature, but the fact does not change conditions as they exist today. The men who wish to liberate our German nation from the conditions in which it now exists cannot cudgel their brains with thinking how excellent it would be if this or that had never arisen. They must strive to find ways and means of abolishing what actually exists. A philosophy of life which is inspired by an infernal spirit of intolerance can only be set aside by a doctrine that is advanced in an equally ardent spirit and fought for with as determined a will and which is itself a new idea, pure and absolutely true.
Each one of us today may regret the fact that the advent of Christianity was the first occasion on which spiritual terror was introduced into the much freer ancient world, but the fact cannot be denied that ever since then the world is pervaded and dominated by this kind of coercion and that violence is broken only by violence and terror by terror. Only then can a new regime be created by means of constructive work. Political parties are prone to enter compromises; but a philosophy never does this. A political party is inclined to adjust its teachings with a view to meeting those of its opponents, but a philosophy proclaims its own infallibility.
In the beginning, political parties have also and nearly always the intention of securing an exclusive and despotic domination for themselves. They always show a slight tendency to become philosophical. But the limited nature of their programme is in itself enough to rob them of that heroic spirit which a philosophy demands. The spirit of conciliation which animates their will attracts those petty and chicken-hearted people who are not fit to be protagonists in any crusade. That is the reason why they mostly become struck in their miserable pettiness very early on the march. They give up fighting for their ideology and, by way of what they call 'positive collaboration,' they try as quickly as possible to wedge themselves into some tiny place at the trough of the existent regime and to stick there as long as possible. Their whole effort ends at that. And if they should get shouldered away from the common manger by a competition of more brutal manners then their only idea is to force themselves in again, by force or chicanery, among the herd of all the others who have similar appetites, in order to get back into the front row, and finally – even at the expense of their most sacred convictions – participate anew in that beloved spot where they find their fodder. They are the jackals of politics.
But a general philosophy of life will never share its place with something else. Therefore it can never agree to collaborate in any order of things that it condemns. On the contrary it feels obliged to employ every means in fighting against the old order and the whole world of ideas belonging to that order and prepare the way for its destruction.
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tanith
post Feb 20 2011, 02:20 PM
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These purely destructive tactics, the danger of which is so readily perceived by the enemy that he forms a united front against them for his common defence, and also the constructive tactics, which must be aggressive in order to carry the new world of ideas to success – both these phases of the struggle call for a body of resolute fighters. Any new philosophy of life will bring its ideas to victory only if the most courageous and active elements of its epoch and its people are enrolled under its standards and grouped firmly together in a powerful fighting organization. To achieve this purpose it is absolutely necessary to select from the general system of doctrine a certain number of ideas which will appeal to such individuals and which, once they are expressed in a precise and clear-cut form, will serve as articles of faith for a new association of men. While the programme of the ordinary political party is nothing but the recipe for cooking up favourable results out of the next general elections, the programme of a philosophy represents a declaration of war against an existing order of things, against present conditions, in short, against the established view of life in general.
It is not necessary, however, that every individual fighter for such a new doctrine need have a full grasp of the ultimate ideas and plans of those who are the leaders of the movement. It is only necessary that each should have a clear notion of the fundamental ideas and that he should thoroughly assimilate a few of the most fundamental principles, so that he will be convinced of the necessity of carrying the movement and its doctrines to success. The individual soldier is not initiated in the knowledge of high strategical plans. But he is trained to submit to a rigid discipline, to be passionately convinced of the justice and inner worth of his cause and that he must devote himself to it without reserve. So, too, the individual follower of a movement must be made acquainted with its far-reaching purpose, how it is inspired by a powerful will and has a great future before it.
Supposing that each soldier in an army were a general, and had the training and capacity for generalship, that army would not be an efficient fighting instrument. Similarly a political movement would not be very efficient in fighting for a philosophy if it were made up exclusively of intellectuals. No, we need the simple soldier also. Without him no discipline can be established.
By its very nature, an organization can exist only if leaders of high intellectual ability are served by a large mass of men who are emotionally devoted to the cause. To maintain discipline in a company of two hundred men who are equally intelligent and capable would turn out more difficult in the long run than in a company of one hundred and ninety less gifted men and ten who have had a higher education.
The Social-Democrats have profited very much by recognizing this truth. They took the broad masses of our people who had just completed military service and learned to submit to discipline, and they subjected this mass of men to the discipline of the Social-Democratic organization, which was no less rigid than the discipline through which the young men had passed in their military training. The Social-Democratic organization consisted of an army divided into officers and men. The German worker who had passed through his military service became the private soldier in that army, and the Jewish intellectual was the officer. The German trade union functionaries may be compared to the non-commissioned officers. The fact, which was always looked upon with indifference by our middle-classes, that only the so-called uneducated classes joined Marxism was the very ground on which this party achieved its success. For while the bourgeois parties, because they mostly consisted of intellectuals, were only a feckless band of undisciplined individuals, out of much less intelligent human material the Marxist leaders formed an army of party combatants who obey their Jewish masters just as blindly as they formerly obeyed their German officers. The German middle-classes, who never; bothered their heads about psychological problems because they felt themselves superior to such matters, did not think it necessary to reflect on the profound significance of this fact and the secret danger involved in it. Indeed they believed. that a political movement which draws its followers exclusively from intellectual circles must, for that very reason, be of greater importance and have better grounds. for its chances of success, and even a greater probability of taking over the government of the country than a party made up of the ignorant masses. They completely failed to realize the fact that the strength of a political party never consists in the intelligence and independent spirit of the rank-and-file of its members but rather in the spirit of willing obedience with which they follow their intellectual leaders. What is of decisive importance is the leadership itself. When two bodies of troops are arrayed in mutual combat victory will not fall to that side in which every soldier has an expert knowledge of the rules of strategy, but rather to that side which has the best leaders and at the same time the best disciplined, most blindly obedient and best drilled troops.
That is a fundamental piece of knowledge which we must always bear in mind when we examine the possibility of transforming a philosophy into a practical reality.
If we agree that in order to carry a philosophy into practical effect it must be incorporated in a fighting movement, then the logical consequence is that the programme of such a movement must take account of the human material at its disposal. Just as the ultimate aims and fundamental principles must be absolutely definite and unmistakable, so the propagandist programme must be well drawn up and must be inspired by a keen sense of its psychological appeals to the minds of those without whose help the noblest ideas will be doomed to remain in the eternal, realm of ideas.
If the idea of the People's State, which is at present an obscure wish, is one day to attain a clear and definite success, from its vague and vast mass of thought it will have to put forward certain definite principles which of their very nature and content are calculated to attract a broad mass of adherents; in other words, such a group of people as can guarantee that these principles will be fought for. That group of people are the German workers.
That is why the programme of the new movement was condensed into a few fundamental postulates, twenty-five in all. They are meant first of all to give the ordinary man a rough sketch of what the movement is aiming at. They are, so to say, a profession of faith which on the one hand is meant to win adherents to the movement and, on the other, they are meant to unite such adherents together in a covenant to which all have subscribed.
In these matters we must never lose sight of the following: What we call the programme of the movement is absolutely right as far as its ultimate aims are concerned, but as regards the manner in which that programme is formulated certain psychologica1 considerations had to be taken into account. Hence, in the course of time, the opinion may well arise that certain principles should be expressed differently and might be better formulated. But any attempt at a different formulation has a fatal effect in most cases. For something that ought to be fixed and unshakable thereby becomes the subject of discussion. As soon as one point alone is removed from the sphere of dogmatic certainty, the discussion will not simply result in a new and better formulation which will have greater consistency but may easily lead to endless debates and general confusion. In such cases the question must always be carefully considered as to whether a new and more adequate formulation is to be preferred, though it may cause a controversy within the movement, or whether it may not be better to retain the old formula which, though probably not the best, represents an organism enclosed in itself, solid and internally homogeneous. All experience shows that the second of these alternatives is preferable. For since in these changes one is dealing only with external forms such corrections will always appear desirable and possible. But in the last analysis the generality of people think superficially and therefore the great danger is that in what is merely an external formulation of the programme people will see an essential aim of the movement. In that way the will and the combative force at the service of the ideas are weakened and the energies that ought to be directed towards the outer world are dissipated in programmatic discussions within the ranks of the movement.
For a doctrine that is actually right in its main features it is less dangerous to retain a formulation which may no longer be quite adequate instead of trying to improve it and thereby allowing a fundamental principle of the movement, which had hitherto been considered as solid as granite, to become the subject of a general discussion which may have unfortunate consequences. This is particularly to be avoided as long as a movement is still fighting for victory. For would it be possible to inspire people with blind faith in the truth of a doctrine if doubt and uncertainty are encouraged by continual alterations in its external formulation?
The essentials of a teaching must never be looked for in its external formulas, but always in its inner meaning. And this meaning is unchangeable. And in its interest one can only wish that a movement should exclude everything that tends towards disintegration and uncertainty in order to preserve the unified force that is necessary for its triumph.
Here again the Catholic Church has a lesson to teach us. Though sometimes, and often quite unnecessarily, its dogmatic system is in conflict with the exact sciences and with scientific discoveries, it is not disposed to sacrifice a syllable of its teachings. It has rightly recognized that its powers of resistance would be weakened by introducing greater or less doctrinal adaptations to meet the temporary conclusions of science, which in reality are always vacillating. And thus it holds fast to its fixed and established dogmas which alone can give to the whole system the character of a faith. And that is the reason why it stands firmer today than ever before. We may prophesy that, as a fixed pole amid fleeting phenomena, it will continue to attract increasing numbers of people who will be blindly attached to it the more rapid the rhythm of changing phenomena around it.
Therefore whoever really and seriously desires that the idea of the People's State should triumph must realize that this triumph can be assured only through a militant movement and that this movement must ground its strength only on the granite firmness of an impregnable and firmly coherent programme. In regard to its formulas it must never make concessions to the spirit of the time but must maintain the form that has once and for all been decided upon as the right one; in any case until victory has crowned its efforts. Before this goal has been reached any attempt to open a discussion on the opportuneness of this or that point in the programme might tend to disintegrate the solidity and fighting strength of the movement, according to the measures in which its followers might take part in such an internal dispute. Some 'improvements' introduced today might be subjected to a critical examination to-morrow, in order to substitute it with something better the day after. Once the barrier has been taken down the road is opened and we know only the beginning, but we do not know to what shoreless sea it may lead.
This important principle had to be acknowledged in practice by the members of the National Socialist Movement at its very beginning. In its programme of twenty-five points the National Socialist German Labour Party has been furnished with a basis that must remain unshakable. The members of the movement, both present and future, must never feel themselves called upon to undertake a critical revision of these leading postulates, but rather feel themselves obliged to put them into practice as they stand. Otherwise the next generation would, in its turn and with equal right, expend its energy in such purely formal work within the party, instead of winning new adherents to the movement and thus adding to its power. For the majority of our followers the essence of the movement will consist not so much in the letter of our theses but in the meaning that we attribute to them.
The new movement owes its name to these considerations, and later on its programme was drawn up in conformity with them. They are the basis of our propaganda. In order to carry the idea of the People's State to victory, a popular party had to be founded, a party that did not consist of intellectual leaders only but also of manual labourers. Any attempt to carry these theories into effect without the aid of a militant organization would be doomed to failure today, as it has failed in the past and must fail in the future. That is why the movement is not only justified but it is also obliged to consider itself as the champion and representative of these ideas. Just as the fundamental principles of the National Socialist Movement are based on the folk idea, folk ideas are National Socialist. If National Socialism would triumph it will have to hold firm to this fact unreservedly, and here again it has not only the right but also the duty to emphasize most rigidly that any attempt to represent the folk idea outside of the National Socialist German Labour Party is futile and in most cases fraudulent.
If the reproach should be launched against our movement that it has 'monopolized' the folk idea, there is only one answer to give.
Not only have we monopolized the folk idea but, to all practical intents and purposes, we have created it.
For what hitherto existed under this name was not in the least capable of influencing the destiny of our people, since all those ideas lacked a political and coherent formulation. In most cases they are nothing but isolated and incoherent notions which are more or less right. Quite frequently these were in open contradiction to one another and in no case was there any internal cohesion among them. And even if this internal cohesion existed it would have been much too weak to form the basis of any movement.
Only the National Socialist Movement proved capable of fulfilling this task.
All kinds of associations and groups, big as well as little, now claim the title völkisch. This is one result of the work which National Socialism has done. Without this work, not one of all these parties would have thought of adopting the word völkisch at all. That expression would have meant nothing to them and especially their directors would never have had anything to do with such an idea. Not until the work of the German National Socialist Labour Party had given this idea a pregnant meaning did it appear in the mouths of all kinds of people. Our party above all, by the success of its propaganda, has shown the force of the folk idea; so much so that the others, in an effort to gain proselytes, find themselves forced to copy our example, at least in words.
Just as heretofore they exploited everything to serve their petty electoral purposes, today they use the word völkisch only as an external and hollow-sounding phrase for the purpose of counteracting the force of the impression which the National Socialist Party makes on the members of those other parties. Only the desire to maintain their existence and the fear that our movement may prevail, because it is based on a philosophy that is of universal importance, and because they feel that the exclusive character of our movement betokens danger for them – only for these reasons do they use words which they repudiated eight years ago, derided seven years ago, branded as stupid six years ago, combated five years ago, hated four years ago, and finally, two years ago, annexed and incorporated them in their present political vocabulary, employing them as war slogans in their struggle.
And so it is necessary even now not to cease calling attention to the fact that not one of those parties has the slightest idea of what the German nation needs. The most striking proof of this is represented by the superficial way in which they use the word völkisch.
Not less dangerous are those who run about as semi-folkists formulating fantastic schemes which are mostly based on nothing else than a fixed idea which in itself might be right but which, because it is an isolated notion, is of no use whatsoever for the formation of a great homogeneous fighting association and could by no means serve as the basis of its organization. Those people who concoct a programme which consists partly of their own ideas and partly of ideas taken from others, about which they have read somewhere, are often more dangerous than the outspoken enemies of the völkisch idea. At best they are sterile theorists but more frequently they are mischievous agitators of the public mind. They believe that they can mask their intellectual vanity, the futility of their efforts, and their lack of stability, by sporting flowing beards and indulging in ancient German gestures.
In face of all those futile attempts, it is therefore worth while to recall the time when the new National Socialist Movement began its fight.


Chapter VI: The Struggle of the Early Period -- The Significance of the Spoken Word

The echoes of our first great meeting, in the banquet hall of the Hofbräuhaus on February 24th, 1920, had not yet died away when we began preparations for our next meeting. Up to that time we had to consider carefully the venture of holding a small meeting every month or at most every fortnight in a city like Munich; but now it was decided that we should hold a mass meeting every week. I need not say that we anxiously asked ourselves on each occasion again and again: Will the people come and will they listen? Personally I was firmly convinced that if once they came they would remain and listen.
During that period the hall of the Hofbrau Haus in Munich acquired for us, National Socialists, a sort of mystic significance. Every week there was a meeting, almost always in that hall, and each time the hall was better filled than on the former occasion, and our public more attentive.
Starting with the theme, 'Responsibility for the War,' which nobody at that time cared about, and passing on to the discussion of the peace treaties, we dealt with almost everything that served to stimulate the minds of our audience and make them interested in our ideas. We drew attention to the peace treaties. What the new movement prophesied again and again before those great masses of people has been fulfilled almost in every detail. To-day it is easy to talk and write about these things. But in those days a public mass meeting which was attended not by the small bourgeoisie but by proletarians who had been aroused by agitators, to criticize the Peace Treaty of Versailles meant an attack on the Republic and an evidence of reaction, if not of monarchist tendencies. The moment one uttered the first criticism of the Versailles Treaty one could expect an immediate reply, which became almost stereotyped: 'And Brest-Litowsk?' 'Brest-Litowsk!' And then the crowd would murmur and the murmur would gradually swell into a roar, until the speaker would have to give up his attempt to persuade them. It would be like knocking one's head against a wall, so desperate were these people. They would not listen nor understand that Versailles was a scandal and a disgrace and that the dictate signified an act of highway robbery against our people. The disruptive work done by the Marxists and the poisonous propaganda of the external enemy had robbed these people of their reason. And one had no right to complain. For the guilt on this side was enormous. What had the German bourgeoisie done to call a halt to this terrible campaign of disintegration, to oppose it and open a way to a recognition of the truth by giving a better and more thorough explanation of the situation than that of the Marxists? Nothing, nothing. At that time I never saw those who are now the great apostles of the people. Perhaps they spoke to select groups, at tea parties of their own little coteries; but there where they should have been, where the wolves were at work, they never risked their appearance, unless it gave them the opportunity of yelling in concert with the wolves.
As for myself, I then saw clearly that for the small group which first composed our movement the question of war guilt had to be cleared up, and cleared up in the light of historical truth. A preliminary condition for the future success of our movement was that it should bring knowledge of the meaning of the peace treaties to the minds of the popular masses. In the opinion of the masses, the peace treaties then signified a democratic success. Therefore, it was necessary to take the opposite side and dig ourselves into the minds of the people as the enemies of the peace treaties; so that later on, when the naked truth of this despicable swindle would be disclosed in all its hideousness, the people would recall the position which we then took and would give us their confidence.
Already at that time I took up my stand on those important fundamental questions where public opinion had gone wrong as a whole. I opposed these wrong notions without regard either for popularity or for hatred, and I was ready to face the fight. The National Socialist German Labour Party ought not to be the beadle but rather the master of public opinion. It must not serve the masses but rather dominate them.
In the case of every movement, especially during its struggling stages, there is naturally a temptation to conform to the tactics of an opponent and use the same battle-cries, when his tactics have succeeded in leading the people to crazy conclusions or to adopt mistaken attitudes towards the questions at issue. This temptation is particularly strong when motives can be found, though they are entirely illusory, that seem to point towards the same ends which the young movement is aiming at. Human poltroonery will then all the more readily adopt those arguments which give it a semblance of justification, 'from its own point of view,' in participating in the criminal policy which the adversary is following.
On several occasions I have experienced such cases, in which the greatest energy had to be employed to prevent the ship of our movement from being drawn into a general current which had been started artificially, and indeed from sailing with it. The last occasion was when our German Press, the Hecuba of the existence of the German nation, succeeded in bringing the question of South Tyrol into a position of importance which was seriously damaging to the interests of the German people. Without considering what interests they were serving, several so-called 'national' men, parties and leagues, joined in the general cry, simply for fear of public opinion which had been excited by the Jews, and foolishly contributed to help in the struggle against a system which we Germans ought, particularly in those days, to consider as the one ray of light in this distracted world. While the international World-Jew is slowly but surely strangling us, our so-called patriots vociferate against a man and his system which have had the courage to liberate themselves from the shackles of Jewish Freemasonry at least in one quarter of the globe and to set the forces of national resistance against the international world-poison. But weak characters were tempted to set their sails according to the direction of the wind and capitulate before the shout of public opinion. For it was veritably a capitulation. They are so much in the habit of lying and so morally base that men may not admit this even to themselves, but the truth remains that only cowardice and fear of the public feeling aroused by the Jews induced certain people to join in the hue and cry. All the other reasons put forward were only miserable excuses of paltry culprits who were conscious of their own crime. There it was necessary to grasp the rudder with an iron hand and turn the movement about, so as to save it from a course that would have led it on the rocks. Certainly to attempt such a change of course was not a popular manoeuvre at that time, because all the leading forces of public opinion had been active and a great flame of public feeling illuminated only one direction. Such a decision almost always brings disfavour on those who dare to take it. In the course of history not a few men have been stoned for an act for which posterity has afterwards thanked them on its knees.
But a movement must count on posterity and not on the plaudits of the movement. It may well be that at such moments certain individuals have to endure hours of anguish; but they should not forget that the moment of liberation will come and that a movement which purposes to reshape the world must serve the future and not the passing hour.
On this point it may be asserted that the greatest and most enduring successes in history are mostly those which were least understood at the beginning, because they were in strong contrast to public opinion and the views and wishes of the time.
We had experience of this when we made our own first public appearance. In all truth it can be said that we did not court public favour but made an onslaught on the follies of our people. In those days the following happened almost always: I presented myself before an assembly of men who believed the opposite of what I wished to say and who wanted the opposite of what I believed in. Then I had to spend a couple of hours in persuading two or three thousand people to give up the opinions they had first held, in destroying the foundations of their views with one blow after another and finally in leading them over to take their stand on the grounds of our own convictions and our philosophy of life.
I learned something that was important at that time, namely, to snatch from the hands of the enemy the weapons which he was using in his reply. I soon noticed that our adversaries, especially in the persons of those who led the discussion against us, were furnished with a definite repertoire of arguments out of which they took points against our claims which were being constantly repeated. The uniform character of this mode of procedure pointed to a systematic and unified training. And so we were able to recognize the incredible way in which the enemy's propagandists had been disciplined, and I am proud today that I discovered a means not only of making this propaganda ineffective but of beating the artificers of it at their own work. Two years later I was master of that art.
In every speech which I made it was important to get a clear idea beforehand of the probable form and matter of the counter-arguments we had to expect in the discussion, so that in the course of my own speech these could be dealt with and refuted. To this end it was necessary to mention all the possible objections and show their inconsistency; it was all the easier to win over an honest listener by expunging from his memory the arguments which had been impressed upon it, so that we anticipated our replies. What he had learned was refuted without having been mentioned by him and that made him all the more attentive to what I had to say.
That was the reason why, after my first lecture on the 'Peace Treaty of Versailles,' which I delivered to the troops while I was still a political instructor in my regiment, I made an alteration in the title and subject and henceforth spoke on 'The Treaties of Brest-Litowsk and Versailles.' For after the discussion which followed my first lecture I quickly ascertained that in reality people knew nothing about the Treaty of Brest-Litowsk and that able party propaganda had succeeded in presenting that Treaty as one of the most scandalous acts of violence in the history of the world.
As a result of the persistency with which this falsehood was repeated again and again before the masses of the people, millions of Germans saw in the Treaty of Versailles a just castigation for the crime we had committed at Brest-Litowsk. Thus they considered all opposition to Versailles as unjust and in many cases there was an honest moral dislike to such a proceeding. And this was also the reason why the shameless and monstrous word 'Reparations' came into common use in Germany. This hypocritical falsehood appeared to millions of our exasperated fellow countrymen as the fulfilment of a higher justice. It is a terrible thought, but the fact was so. The best proof of this was the propaganda which I initiated against Versailles by explaining the Treaty of Brest-Litowsk. I compared the two treaties with one another, point by point, and showed how in truth the one treaty was immensely humane, in contradistinction to the inhuman barbarity of the other. The effect was very striking. Then I spoke on this theme before an assembly of two thousand persons, during which I often saw three thousand six hundred hostile eyes fixed on me. And three hours later I had in front of me a swaying mass of righteous indignation and fury. A great lie had been uprooted from the hearts and brains of a crowd composed of thousands of individuals and a truth had been implanted in its place.
The two lectures – that 'On the Causes of the World War' and 'On the Peace Treaties of Brest-Litowsk and Versailles' respectively – I then considered as the most important of all. Therefore I repeated them dozens of times, always giving them a new intonation; until at least on those points a definitely clear and unanimous opinion reigned among those from whom our movement recruited its first members.
Furthermore, these gatherings brought me the advantage that I slowly became a platform orator at mass meetings, and gave me practice in the pathos and gesture required in large halls that held thousands of people.
Outside of the small circles which I have mentioned, at that time I found no party engaged in explaining things to the people in this way. Not one of these parties was then active which talk today as if it was they who had brought about the change in public opinion. If a political leader, calling himself a nationalist, pronounced a discourse somewhere or other on this theme it was only before circles which for the most part were already of his own conviction and among whom the most that was done was to confirm them in their opinions. But that was not what was needed then. What was needed was to win over through propaganda and explanation those whose opinions and mental attitudes held them bound to the enemy's camp.
The one-page circular was also adopted by us to help in this propaganda. While still a soldier I had written a circular in which I contrasted the Treaty of Brest-Litowsk with that of Versailles. That circular was printed and distributed in large numbers. Later on I used it for the party, and also with good success. Our first meetings were distinguished by the fact that there were tables covered with leaflets, papers, and pamphlets of every kind. But we relied principally on the spoken word. And, in fact, this is the only means capable of producing really great revolutions, which can be explained on general psychological grounds.
In the first volume I have already stated that all the formidable events which have changed the aspect of the world were carried through, not by the written but by the spoken word. On that point there was a long discussion in a certain section of the Press during the course of which our shrewd bourgeois people strongly opposed my thesis. But the reason for this attitude confounded the sceptics. The bourgeois intellectuals protested against my attitude simply because they themselves did not have the force or ability to influence the masses through the spoken word; for they always relied exclusively on the help of writers and did not enter the arena themselves as orators for the purpose of arousing the people. The development of events necessarily led to that condition of affairs which is characteristic of the bourgeoisie today, namely, the loss of the psychological instinct to act upon and influence the masses.
An orator receives continuous guidance from the people before whom he speaks. This helps him to correct the direction of his speech; for he can always gauge, by the faces of his hearers, how far they follow and understand him, and whether his words are producing the desired effect. But the writer does not know his reader at all. Therefore, from the outset he does not address himself to a definite human group of persons which he has before his eyes but must write in a general way. Hence, up to a certain extent he must fail in psychological finesse and flexibility. Therefore, in general it may be said that a brilliant orator writes better than a brilliant writer can speak, unless the latter has continual practice in public speaking. One must also remember that of itself the multitude is mentally inert, that it remains attached to its old habits and that it is not naturally prone to read something which does not conform with its own pre-established beliefs when such writing does not contain what the multitude hopes to find there. Therefore, some piece of writing which has a particular tendency is for the most part read only by those who are in sympathy with it. Only a leaflet or a placard, on account of its brevity, can hope to arouse a momentary interest in those whose opinions differ from it. The picture, in all its forms, including the film, has better prospects. Here there is less need of elaborating the appeal to the intelligence. It is sufficient if one be careful to have quite short texts, because many people are more ready to accept a pictorial presentation than to read a long written description. In a much shorter time, at one stroke I might say, people will understand a pictorial presentation of something which it would take them a long and laborious effort of reading to understand.
The most important consideration, however, is that one never knows into what hands a piece of written material comes and yet the form in which its subject is presented must remain the same. In general the effect is greater when the form of treatment corresponds to the mental level of the reader and suits his nature. Therefore, a book which is meant for the broad masses of the people must try from the very start to gain its effects through a style and level of ideas which would be quite different from a book intended to be read by the higher intellectual classes.
Only through his capacity for adaptability does the force of the written word approach that of oral speech. The orator may deal with the same subject as a book deals with; but if he has the genius of a great and popular orator he will scarcely ever repeat the same argument or the same material in the same form on two consecutive occasions. He will always follow the lead of the great mass in such a way that from the living emotion of his hearers the apt word which he needs will be suggested to him and in its turn this will go straight to the hearts of his hearers. Should he make even a slight mistake he has the living correction before him. As I have already said, he can read the play of expression on the faces of his hearers, first to see if they understand what he says, secondly to see if they take in the whole of his argument, and, thirdly, in how far they are convinced of the justice of what has been placed before them. Should he observe, first, that his hearers do not understand him he will make his explanation so elementary and clear that they will be able to grasp it, even to the last individual. Secondly, if he feels that they are not capable of following him he will make one idea follow another carefully and slowly until the most slow-witted hearer no longer lags behind. Thirdly, as soon as he has the feeling that they do not seem convinced that he is right in the way he has put things to them he will repeat his argument over and over again, always giving fresh illustrations, and he himself will state their unspoken objection. He will repeat these objections, dissecting them and refuting them, until the last group of the opposition show him by their behaviour and play of expression that they have capitulated before his exposition of the case.
Not infrequently it is a case of overcoming ingrained prejudices which are mostly unconscious and are supported by sentiment rather than reason. It is a thousand times more difficult to overcome this barrier of instinctive aversion, emotional hatred and preventive dissent than to correct opinions which are founded on defective or erroneous knowledge. False ideas and ignorance may be set aside by means of instruction, but emotional resistance never can. Nothing but an appeal to these hidden forces will be effective here. And that appeal can be made by scarcely any writer. Only the orator can hope to make it.
A very striking proof of this is found in the fact that, though we had a bourgeois Press which in many cases was well written and produced and had a circulation of millions among the people, it could not prevent the broad masses from becoming the implacable enemies of the bourgeois class. The deluge of papers and books published by the intellectual circles year after year passed over the millions of the lower social strata like water over glazed leather. This proves that one of two things must be true: either that the matter offered in the bourgeois Press was worthless or that it is impossible to reach the hearts of the broad masses by means of the written word alone. Of course, the latter would be specially true where the written material shows such little psychological insight as has hitherto been the case.
It is useless to object here, as certain big Berlin papers of German-National tendencies have attempted to do, that this statement is refuted by the fact that the Marxists have exercised their greatest influence through their writings, and especially through their principal book, published by Karl Marx. Seldom has a more superficial argument been based on a false assumption. What gave Marxism its amazing influence over the broad masses was not that formal printed work which sets forth the Jewish system of ideas, but the tremendous oral propaganda carried on for years among the masses. Out of one hundred thousand German workers scarcely one hundred know of Marx's book. It has been studied much more in intellectual circles and especially by the Jews than by the genuine followers of the movement who come from the lower classes. That work was not written for the masses, but exclusively for the intellectual leaders of the Jewish machine for conquering the world. The engine was heated with quite different stuff: namely, the journalistic Press. What differentiates the bourgeois Press from the Marxist Press is that the latter is written by agitators, whereas the bourgeois Press would like to carry on agitation by means of professional writers. The Social-Democrat sub-editor, who almost always came directly from the meeting to the editorial offices of his paper, felt his job on his finger-tips. But the bourgeois writer who left his desk to appear before the masses already felt ill when he smelled the very odour of the crowd and found that what he had written was useless to him.
What won over millions of workpeople to the Marxist cause was not the ex cathedra style of the Marxist writers but the formidable propagandist work done by tens of thousands of indefatigable agitators, commencing with the leading fiery agitator down to the smallest official in the syndicate, the trusted delegate and the platform orator. Furthermore, there were the hundreds of thousands of meetings where these orators, standing on tables in smoky taverns, hammered their ideas into the heads of the masses, thus acquiring an admirable psychological knowledge of the human material they had to deal with. And in this way they were enabled to select the best weapons for their assault on the citadel of public opinion. In addition to all this there were the gigantic mass-demonstrations with processions in which a hundred thousand men took part. All this was calculated to impress on the petty-hearted individual the proud conviction that, though a small worm, he was at the same time a cell of the great dragon before whose devastating breath the hated bourgeois world would one day be consumed in fire and flame, and the dictatorship of the proletariat would celebrate its conclusive victory.
This kind of propaganda influenced men in such a way as to give them a taste for reading the Social Democratic Press and prepare their minds for its teaching. That Press, in its turn, was a vehicle of the spoken word rather than of the written word. Whereas in the bourgeois camp professors and learned writers, theorists and authors of all kinds, made attempts at talking, in the Marxist camp real speakers often made attempts at writing. And it was precisely the Jew who was most prominent here. In general and because of his shrewd dialectical skill and his knack of twisting the truth to suit his own purposes, he was an effective writer but in reality his métier was that of a revolutionary orator rather than a writer.
For this reason the journalistic bourgeois world, setting aside the fact that here also the Jew held the whip hand and that therefore this press did not really interest itself in the instructtion of the broad masses, was not able to exercise even the least influence over the opinions held by the great masses of our people.
It is difficult to remove emotional prejudices, psychological bias, feelings, etc., and to put others in their place. Success depends here on imponderable conditions and influences. Only the orator who is gifted with the most sensitive insight can estimate all this. Even the time of day at which the speech is delivered has a decisive influence on its results. The same speech, made by the same orator and on the same theme, will have very different results according as it is delivered at ten o'clock in the forenoon, at three in the afternoon, or in the evening. When I first engaged in public speaking I arranged for meetings to take place in the forenoon and I remember particularly a demonstration that we held in the Munich Kindl Keller 'Against the Oppression of German Districts.' That was the biggest hall then in Munich and the audacity of our undertaking was great. In order to make the hour of the meeting attractive for all the members of our movement and the other people who might come, I fixed it for ten o'clock on a Sunday morning. The result was depressing. But it was very instructive. The hall was filled. The impression was profound, but the general feeling was cold as ice. Nobody got warmed up, and I myself, as the speaker of the occasion, felt profoundly unhappy at the thought that I could not establish the slightest contact with my audience. I do not think I spoke worse than before, but the effect seemed absolutely negative. I left the hall very discontented, but also feeling that I had gained a new experience. Later on I tried the same kind of experiment, but always with the same results.
That was nothing to be wondered at. If one goes to a theatre to see a matinée performance and then attends an evening performance of the same play one is astounded at the difference in the impressions created. A sensitive person recognizes for himself the fact that these two states of mind caused by the matinee and the evening performance respectively are quite different in themselves. The same is true of cinema productions. This latter point is important; for one may say of the theatre that perhaps in the afternoon the actor does not make the same effort as in the evening. But surely it cannot be said that the cinema is different in the afternoon from what it is at nine o'clock in the evening. No, here the time exercises a distinct influence, just as a room exercises a distinct influence on a person. There are rooms which leave one cold, for reasons which are difficult to explain. There are rooms which refuse steadfastly to allow any favourable atmosphere to be created in them. Moreover, certain memories and traditions which are present as pictures in the human mind may have a determining influence on the impression produced. Thus, a representation of Parsifal at Bayreuth will have an effect quite different from that which the same opera produces in any other part of the world. The mysterious charm of the House on the 'Festival Heights' in the old city of The Margrave cannot be equalled or substituted anywhere else.
In all these cases one deals with the problem of influencing the freedom of the human will. And that is true especially of meetings where there are men whose wills are opposed to the speaker and who must be brought around to a new way of thinking. In the morning and during the day it seems that the power of the human will rebels with its strongest energy against any attempt to impose upon it the will or opinion of another. On the other hand, in the evening it easily succumbs to the domination of a stronger will. Because really in such assemblies there is a contest between two opposite forces. The superior oratorical art of a man who has the compelling character of an apostle will succeed better in bringing around to a new way of thinking those who have naturally been subjected to a weakening of their forces of resistance rather than in converting those who are in full possession of their volitional and intellectual energies.
The mysterious artificial dimness of the Catholic churches also serves this purpose, the burning candles, the incense, the thurible, etc.
In this struggle between the orator and the opponent whom he must convert to his cause this marvellous sensibility towards the psychological influences of propaganda can hardly ever be availed of by an author. Generally speaking, the effect of the writer's work helps rather to conserve, reinforce and deepen the foundations of a mentality already existing. All really great historical revolutions were not produced by the written word. At most, they were accompanied by it.
It is out of the question to think that the French Revolution could have been carried into effect by philosophizing theories if they had not found an army of agitators led by demagogues of the grand style. These demagogues inflamed popular passion that had been already aroused, until that volcanic eruption finally broke out and convulsed the whole of Europe. And the same happened in the case of the gigantic Bolshevik revolution which recently took place in Russia. It was not due to the writers on Lenin's side but to the oratorical activities of those who preached the doctrine of hatred and that of the innumerable small and great orators who took part in the agitation.
The masses of illiterate Russians were not fired to Communist revolutionary enthusiasm by reading the theories of Karl Marx but by the promises of paradise made to the people by thousands of agitators in the service of an idea.
It was always so, and it will always be so.
It is just typical of our pig-headed intellectuals, who live apart from the practical world, to think that a writer must of necessity be superior to an orator in intelligence. This point of view was once exquisitely illustrated by a critique, published in a certain National paper which I have already mentioned, where it was stated that one is often disillusioned by reading the speech of an acknowledged great orator in print. That reminded me of another article which came into my hands during the War. It dealt with the speeches of Lloyd George, who was then Minister of Munitions, and examined them in a painstaking way under the microscope of criticism. The writer made the brilliant statement that these speeches showed inferior intelligence and learning and that, moreover, they were banal and commonplace productions. I myself procured some of these speeches, published in pamphlet form, and had to laugh at the fact that a normal German quill-driver did not in the least understand these psychological masterpieces in the art of influencing the masses. This man criticized these speeches exclusively according to the impression they made on his own blasé mind, whereas the great British Demagogue had produced an immense effect on his audience through them, and in the widest sense on the whole of the British populace. Looked at from this point of view, that Englishman's speeches were most wonderful achievements, precisely because they showed an astounding knowledge of the soul of the broad masses of the people. For that reason their effect was really penetrating. Compare with them the futile stammerings of a Bethmann-Hollweg. On the surface his speeches were undoubtedly more intellectual, but they just proved this man's inability to speak to the people, which he really could not do. Nevertheless, to the average stupid brain of the German writer, who is, of course, endowed with a lot of scientific learning, it came quite natural to judge the speeches of the English Minister – which were made for the purpose of influencing the masses – by the impression which they made on his own mind, fossilized in its abstract learning. And it was more natural for him to compare them in the light of that impression with the brilliant but futile talk of the German statesman, which of course appealed to the writer's mind much more favourably. That the genius of Lloyd George was not only equal but a thousandfold superior to that of a Bethmann-Hollweg is proved by the fact that he found for his speeches that form and expression which opened the hearts of his people to him and made these people carry out his will absolutely. The primitive quality itself of those speeches, the originality of his expressions, his choice of clear and simple illustration, are examples which prove the superior political capacity of this Englishman. For one must never judge the speech of a statesman to his people by the impression which it leaves on the mind of a university professor but by the effect it produces on the people. And this is the sole criterion of the orator's genius.
The astonishing development of our movement, which was created from nothing a few years ago and is today singled out for persecution by all the internal and external enemies of our nation, must be attributed to the constant recognition and practical application of those principles.
Written matter also played an important part in our movement; but at the stage of which I am writing it served to give an equal and uniform education to the directors of the movement, in the upper as well as in the lower grades, rather than to convert the masses of our adversaries. It was only in very rare cases that a convinced and devoted Social Democrat or Communist was induced to acquire an understanding of our conception of life or to study a criticism of his own by procuring and reading one of our pamphlets or even one of our books. Even a newspaper is rarely read if it does not bear the stamp of a party affiliation. Moreover, the reading of newspapers helps little; because the general picture given by a single number of a newspaper is so confused and produces such a fragmentary impression that it really does not influence the occasional reader. And where a man has to count his pennies it cannot be assumed that, exclusively for the purpose of being objectively informed, he will become a regular reader or subscriber to a paper which opposes his views. Only one who has already joined a movement will regularly read the party organ of that movement, and especially for the purpose of keeping himself informed of what is happening in the movement.
It is quite different with the 'spoken' leaflet. Especially if it be distributed gratis it will be taken up by one person or another, all the more willingly if its display title refers to a question about which everybody is talking at the moment. Perhaps the reader, after having read through such a leaflet more or less thoughtfully, will have new viewpoints and mental attitudes and may give his attention to a new movement. But with these, even in the best of cases, only a small impulse will be given, but no definite conviction will be created; because the leaflet can do nothing more than draw attention to something and can become effective only by bringing the reader subsequently into a situation where he is more fundamentally informed and instructed. Such instruction must always be given at the mass assembly.
Mass assemblies are also necessary for the reason that, in attending them, the individual who felt himself formerly only on the point of joining the new movement, now begins to feel isolated and in fear of being left alone as he acquires for the first time the picture of a great community which has a strengthening and encouraging effect on most people. Brigaded in a company or battalion, surrounded by his companions, he will march with a lighter heart to the attack than if he had to march alone. In the crowd he feels himself in some way thus sheltered, though in reality there are a thousand arguments against such a feeling.
Mass demonstrations on the grand scale not only reinforce the will of the individual but they draw him still closer to the movement and help to create an esprit de corps. The man who appears first as the representative of a new doctrine in his place of business or in his factory is bound to feel himself embarrassed and has need of that reinforcement which comes from the consciousness that he is a member of a great community. And only a mass demonstration can impress upon him the greatness of this community. If, on leaving the shop or mammoth factory, in which he feels very small indeed, he should enter a vast assembly for the first time and see around him thousands and thousands of men who hold the same opinions; if, while still seeking his way, he is gripped by the force of mass-suggestion which comes from the excitement and enthusiasm of three or four thousand other men in whose midst he finds himself; if the manifest success and the concensus of thousands confirm the truth and justice of the new teaching and for the first time raise doubt in his mind as to the truth of the opinions held by himself up to now – then he submits himself to the fascination of what we call mass-suggestion. The will, the yearning and indeed the strength of thousands of people are in each individual. A man who enters such a meeting in doubt and hesitation leaves it inwardly fortified; he has become a member of a community.
The National Socialist Movement should never forget this, and it should never allow itself to be influenced by these bourgeois duffers who think they know everything but who have foolishly gambled away a great State, together with their own existence and the supremacy of their own class. They are overflowing with ability; they can do everything, and they know everything. But there is one thing they have not known how to do, and that is how to save the German people from falling into the arms of Marxism. In that they have shown themselves most pitiably and miserably impotent. So that the present opinion they have of themselves is only equal to their conceit. Their pride and stupidity are fruits of the same tree.
If these people try to disparage the importance of the spoken word today, they do it only because they realize – God be praised and thanked – how futile all their own speechifying has been.


Chapter VII: The Struggle with the Red Front

In 1919-20 and also in 1921 I attended some of the bourgeois meetings. Invariably I had the same feeling towards these as towards the compulsory dose of castor oil in my boyhood days. It just had to be taken because it was good for one: but it certainly tasted unpleasant. If it were possible to tie ropes round the German people and forcibly drag them to these bourgeois meetings, keeping them there behind barred doors and allowing nobody to escape until the meeting closed, then this procedure might prove successful in the course of a few hundred years. For my own part, I must frankly admit that, under such circumstances, I could not find life worth living; and indeed I should no longer wish to be a German. But, thank God, all this is impossible. And so it is not surprising that the sane and unspoilt masses shun these 'bourgeois mass meetings' as the devil shuns holy water.
I came to know the prophets of the bourgeois philosophy, and I was not surprised at what I learned, as I knew that they attached little importance to the spoken word. At that time I attended meetings of the Democrats, the German Nationalists, the German People's Party and the Bavarian People's Party (the Centre Party of Bavaria). What struck me at once was the homogeneous uniformity of the audiences. Nearly always they were made up exclusively of party members. The whole affair was more like a yawning card party than an assembly of people who had just passed through a great revolution. The speakers did all they could to maintain this tranquil atmosphere. They declaimed, or rather read out, their speeches in the style of an intellectual newspaper article or a learned treatise, avoiding all striking expressions. Here and there a feeble professorial joke would be introduced, whereupon the people sitting at the speaker's table felt themselves obliged to laugh – not loudly but encouragingly and with well-bred reserve.
And there were always those people at the speaker's table. I once attended a meeting in the Wagner Hall in Munich. It was a demonstration to celebrate the anniversary of the Battle of Leipzig. The speech was delivered or rather read out by a venerable old professor from one or other of the universities. The committee sat on the platform: one monocle on the right, another monocle on the left, and in the centre a gentleman with no monocle. All three of them were punctiliously attired in morning coats, and I had the impression of being present before a judge's bench just as the death sentence was about to be pronounced or at a christening or some more solemn religious ceremony. The so-called speech, which in printed form may have read quite well, had a disastrous effect. After three quarters of an hour the audience fell into a sort of hypnotic trance, which was interrupted only when some man or woman left the hall, or by the clatter which the waitresses made, or by the increasing yawns of slumbering individuals. I had posted myself behind three workmen who were present either out of curiosity or because they were sent there by their parties. From time to time they glanced at one another with an ill-concealed grin, nudged one another with the elbow, and then silently left the hall. One could see that they had no intention whatsoever of interrupting the proceedings, nor indeed was it necessary to interrupt them. At long last the celebration showed signs of drawing to a close. After the professor, whose voice had meanwhile become more and more inaudible, finally ended his speech, the gentleman without the monocle delivered a rousing peroration to the assembled 'German sisters and brothers.' On behalf of the audience and himself he expressed gratitude for the magnificent lecture which they had just heard from Professor X and emphasized how deeply the Professor's words had moved them all. If a general discussion on the lecture were to take place it would be tantamount to profanity, and he thought he was voicing the opinion of all present in suggesting that such a discussion should not be held. Therefore, he would ask the assembly to rise from their seats and join in singing the patriotic song, Wir sind ein einig Volk von Brüdern. The proceedings finally closed with the anthem, Deutschland über Alles.
And then they all sang. It appeared to me that when the second verse was reached the voices were fewer and that only when the refrain came on they swelled loudly. When we reached the third verse my belief was confirmed that a good many of those present were not very familiar with the text.
But what has all this to do with the matter when such a song is sung wholeheartedly and fervidly by an assembly of German nationals?
After this the meeting broke up and everyone hurried to get outside, one to his glass of beer, one to a cafe, and others simply into the fresh air.
Out into the fresh air! That was also my feeling. And was this the way to honour an heroic struggle in which hundreds of thousands of Prussians and Germans had fought? To the devil with it all!
That sort of thing might find favour with the Government, it being merely a 'peaceful' meeting. The Minister responsible for law and order need not fear that enthusiasm might suddenly get the better of public decorum and induce these people to pour out of the room and, instead of dispersing to beer halls and cafes, march in rows of four through the town singing Deutschland hoch in Ehren and causing some unpleasantness to a police force in need of rest.
No. That type of citizen is of no use to anyone.
On the other hand the National Socialist meetings were by no means 'peaceable' affairs. Two distinct outlooks enraged in bitter opposition to one another, and these meetings did not close with the mechanical rendering of a dull patriotic song but rather with a passionate outbreak of popular national feeling.
It was imperative from the start to introduce rigid discipline into our meetings and establish the authority of the chairman absolutely. Our purpose was not to pour out a mixture of soft-soap bourgeois talk; what we had to say was meant to arouse the opponents at our meetings! How often did they not turn up in masses with a few individual agitators among them and, judging by the expression on all their faces, ready to finish us off there and then.
Yes, how often did they not turn up in huge numbers, those supporters of the Red Flag, all previously instructed to smash up everything once and for all and put an end to these meetings. More often than not everything hung on a mere thread, and only the chairman's ruthless determination and the rough handling by our ushers baffled our adversaries' intentions. And indeed they had every reason for being irritated.
The fact that we had chosen red as the colour for our posters sufficed to attract them to our meetings. The ordinary bourgeoisie were very shocked to see that, we had also chosen the symbolic red of Bolshevism and they regarded this as something ambiguously significant. The suspicion was whispered in German Nationalist circles that we also were merely another variety of Marxism, perhaps even Marxists suitably disguised, or better still, Socialists. The actual difference between Socialism and Marxism still remains a mystery to these people up to this day. The charge of Marxism was conclusively proved when it was discovered that at our meetings we deliberately substituted the words 'Fellow-countrymen and Women' for 'Ladies and Gentlemen' and addressed each other as 'Party Comrade'. We used to roar with laughter at these silly faint-hearted bourgeoisie and their efforts to puzzle out our origin, our intentions and our aims.
We chose red for our posters after particular and careful deliberation, our intention being to irritate the Left, so as to arouse their attention and tempt them to come to our meetings – if only in order to break them up – so that in this way we got a chance of talking to the people.
In those years' it was indeed a delightful experience to follow the constantly changing tactics of our perplexed and helpless adversaries. First of all they appealed to their followers to ignore us and keep away from our meetings. Generally speaking this appeal was heeded. But, as time went on, more and more of their followers gradually found their way to us and accepted our teaching. Then the leaders became nervous and uneasy. They clung to their belief that such a development should not be ignored for ever, and that terror must be applied in order to put an end to it.
Appeals were then made to the 'class-conscious proletariat' to attend our meetings in masses and strike with the clenched hand of the proletarian at the representatives of a 'monarchist and reactionary agitation'.
Our meetings suddenly became packed with work-people fully three-quarters of an hour before the proceedings were scheduled to begin. These gatherings resembled a powder cask ready to explode at any moment; and the fuse was conveniently at hand. But matters always turned out differently. People came as enemies and left, not perhaps prepared to join us, yet in a reflective mood and disposed critically to examine the correctness of their own doctrine. Gradually as time went on my three-hour lectures resulted in supporters and opponents becoming united in one single enthusiastic group of people. Every signal for the breaking-up of the meeting failed. The result was that the opposition leaders became frightened and once again looked for help to those quarters that had formerly discountenanced these tactics and, with some show of right, had been of the opinion that on principle the workers should be forbidden to attend our meetings.
Then they did not come any more, or only in small numbers. But after a short time the whole game started all over again. The instructions to keep away from us were ignored; the comrades came in steadily increasing numbers, until finally the advocates of the radical tactics won the day. We were to be broken up.
Yet when, after two, three and even eight meetings, it was realized that to break up these gatherings was easier said than done and that every meeting resulted in a decisive weakening of the red fighting forces, then suddenly the other password was introduced: 'Proletarians, comrades and comradesses, avoid meetings of the National Socialist agitators'.
The same eternally alternating tactics were also to be observed in the Red Press. Soon they tried to silence us but discovered the uselessness of such an attempt. After that they swung round to the opposite tactics. Daily 'reference' was made to us solely for the purpose of absolutely ridiculing us in the eyes of the working-classes. After a time these gentlemen must have felt that no harm was being done to us, but that, on the contrary, we were reaping an advantage in that people were asking themselves why so much space was being devoted to a subject which was supposed to be so ludicrous. People became curious. Suddenly there was a change of tactics and for a time we were treated as veritable criminals against mankind. One article followed the other, in which our criminal intentions were explained and new proofs brought forward to support what was said. Scandalous tales, all of them fabricated from start to finish, were published in order to help to poison the public mind. But in a short time even these attacks also proved futile; and in fact they assisted materially because they attracted public attention to us.
In those days I took up the standpoint that it was immaterial whether they laughed at us or reviled us, whether they depicted us as fools or criminals; the important point was that they took notice of us and that in the eyes of the working-classes we came to be regarded as the only force capable of putting up a fight. I said to myself that the followers of the Jewish Press would come to know all about us and our real aims.
One reason why they never got so far as breaking up our meetings was undoubtedly the incredible cowardice displayed by the leaders of the opposition. On every critical occasion they left the dirty work to the smaller fry whilst they waited outside the halls for the results of the break up.
We were exceptionally well informed in regard to our opponents' intentions, not only because we allowed several of our party colleagues to remain members of the Red organizations for reasons of expediency, but also because the Red wire-pullers, fortunately for us, were afflicted with a degree of talkativeness that is still unfortunately very prevalent among Germans. They could not keep their own counsel, and more often than not they started cackling before the proverbial egg was laid. Hence, time and again our precautions were such that Red agitators had no inkling of how near they were to being thrown out of the meetings.
This state of affairs compelled us to take the work of safeguarding our meetings into our own hands. No reliance could be placed on official protection. On the contrary; experience showed that such protection always favoured only the disturbers. The only real outcome of police intervention would be that the meeting would be dissolved, that is to say, closed. And that is precisely what our opponents granted.
Generally speaking, this led the police to adopt a procedure which, to say the least, was a most infamous sample of official malpractice. The moment they received information of a threat that the one or other meeting was to be broken up, instead of arresting the would-be disturbers, they promptly advised the innocent parties that the meeting was forbidden. This step the police proclaimed as a 'precautionary measure in the interests of law and order'.
The political work and activities of decent people could therefore always be hindered by desperate ruffians who had the means at their disposal. In the name of peace and order State authority bowed down to these ruffians and demanded that others should not provoke them. When National Socialism desired to hold meetings in certain parts and the labour unions declared that their members would resist, then it was not these blackmailers that were arrested and gaoled. No. Our meetings were forbidden by the police. Yes, this organ of the law had the unspeakable impudence to advise us in writing to this effect in innumerable instances. To avoid such eventualities, it was necessary to see to it that every attempt to disturb a meeting was nipped in the bud. Another feature to be taken into account in this respect is that all meetings which rely on police protection must necessarily bring discredit to their promoters in the eyes of the general public. Meetings that are only possible with the protective assistance of a strong force of police convert nobody; because in order to win over the lower strata of the people there must be a visible show of strength on one's own side. In the same way that a man of courage will win a woman's affection more easily than a coward, so a heroic movement will be more successful in winning over the hearts of a people than a weak movement which relies on police support for its very existence.
It is for this latter reason in particular that our young movement was to be charged with the responsibility of assuring its own existence, defending itself; and conducting its own work of smashing the Red opposition.
The work of organizing the protective measures for our meetings was based on the following:
(1) An energetic and psychologically judicious way of conducting the meeting.
(2) An organized squad of troops to maintain order.
In those days we and no one else were masters of the situation at our meetings and on no occasion did we fail to emphasize this. Our opponents fully realized that any provocation would be the occasion of throwing them out of the hall at once, whatever the odds against us. At meetings, particularly outside Munich, we had in those days from five to eight hundred opponents against fifteen to sixteen National Socialists; yet we brooked no interference, for we were ready to be killed rather than capitulate. More than once a handful of party colleagues offered a heroic resistance to a raging and violent mob of Reds. Those fifteen or twenty men would certainly have been overwhelmed in the end had not the opponents known that three or four times as many of themselves would first get their skulls cracked. Arid that risk they were not willing to run. We had done our best to study Marxist and bourgeois methods of conducting meetings, and we had certainly learnt something.
The Marxists had always exercised a most rigid discipline so that the question of breaking up their meetings could never have originated in bourgeois quarters. This gave the Reds all the more reason for acting on this plan. In time they not only became past-masters in this art but in certain large districts of the Reich they went so far as to declare that non-Marxist meetings were nothing less than a cause of' provocation against the proletariat. This was particularly the case when the wire-pullers suspected that a meeting might call attention to their own transgressions and thus expose their own treachery and chicanery. Therefore the moment such a meeting was announced to be held a howl of rage went up from the Red Press. These detractors of the law nearly always turned first to the authorities and requested in imperative and threatening language that this 'provocation of the proletariat' be stopped forthwith in the 'interests of law and order'. Their language was chosen according to the importance of the official blockhead they were dealing with and thus success was assured. If by chance the official happened to be a true German – and not a mere figurehead – and he declined the impudent request, then the time-honoured appeal to stop 'provocation of the proletariat' was issued together with instructions to attend such and such a meeting on a certain date in full strength for the purpose of 'putting a stop to the disgraceful machinations of the bourgeoisie by means of the proletarian fist'.
The pitiful and frightened manner in which these bourgeois meetings are conducted must be seen in order to be believed. Very frequently these threats were sufficient to call off such a meeting at once. The feeling of fear was so marked that the meeting, instead of commencing at eight o'clock, very seldom was opened before a quarter to nine or nine o'clock. The Chairman thereupon did his best, by showering compliments on the 'gentleman of the opposition' to prove how he and all others present were pleased (a palpable lie) to welcome a visit from men who as yet were not in sympathy with them for the reason that only by mutual discussion (immediately agreed to) could they be brought closer together in mutual understanding. Apart from this the Chairman also assured them that the meeting had no intention whatsoever of interfering with the professed convictions of anybody. Indeed no. Everyone had the right to form and hold his own political views, but others should be allowed to do likewise. He therefore requested that the speaker be allowed to deliver his speech without interruption – the speech in any case not being a long affair. People abroad, he continued, would thus not come to regard this meeting as another shameful example of the bitter fraternal strife that is raging in Germany. And so on and so forth
The brothers of the Left had little if any appreciation for that sort of talk; the speaker had hardly commenced when he was shouted down. One gathered the impression at times that these speakers were graceful for being peremptorily cut short in their martyr-like discourse. These bourgeois toreadors left the arena in the midst of a vast uproar, that is to say, provided that they were not thrown down the stairs with cracked skulls, which was very often the case.
Therefore, our methods of organization at National Socialist meetings were something quite strange to the Marxists. They came to our meetings in the belief that the little game which they had so often played could as a matter of course be also repeated on us. "To-day we shall finish them off." How often did they bawl this out to each other on entering the meeting hall, only to be thrown out with lightning speed before they had time to repeat it.
In the first place our method of conducting a meeting was entirely different. We did not beg and pray to be allowed to speak, and we did not straightway give everybody the right to hold endless discussions. We curtly gave everyone to understand that we were masters of the meeting and that we would do as it pleased us and that everyone who dared to interrupt would be unceremoniously thrown out. We stated clearly our refusal to accept responsibility for anyone treated in this manner. If time permitted and if it suited us, a discussion would be allowed to take place. Our party colleague would now make his speech.... That kind of talk was sufficient in itself to astonish the Marxists.
Secondly, we had at our disposal a well-trained and organized body of men for maintaining order at our meetings. On the other hand the bourgeois parties protected their meetings with a body of men better classified as ushers who by virtue of their age thought they were entitled to-authority and respect. But as Marxism has little or no respect for these things, the question of suitable self-protection at these bourgeois meetings was, so to speak, in practice non-existent.
When our political meetings first started I made it a special point to organize a suitable defensive squad – a squad composed chiefly of young men. Some of them were comrades who had seen active service with me; others were young party members who, right from the start, had been trained and brought up to realize that only terror is capable of smashing terror – that only courageous and determined people had made a success of things in this world and that, finally, we were fighting for an idea so lofty that it was worth the last drop of our blood. These young men had been brought up to realize that where force replaced common sense in the solution of a problem, the best means of defence was attack and that the reputation of our hall-guard squads should stamp us as a political fighting force and not as a debating society.
And it was extraordinary how eagerly these boys of the War generation responded to this order. They had indeed good reason for being bitterly disappointed and indignant at the miserable milksop methods employed by the bourgeoise.
Thus it became clear to everyone that the Revolution had only been possible thanks to the dastardly methods of a bourgeois government. At that time there was certainly no lack of man-power to suppress the revolution, but unfortunately there was an entire lack of directive brain power. How often did the eyes of my young men light up with enthusiasm when I explained to them the vital functions connected with their task and assured them time and again that all earthly wisdom is useless unless it be supported by a measure of strength, that the gentle goddess of Peace can only walk in company with the god of War, and that every great act of peace must be protected and assisted by force. In this way the idea of military service came to them in a far more realistic form – not in the fossilized sense of the souls of decrepit officials serving the dead authority of a dead State, but in the living realization of the duty of each man to sacrifice his life at all times so that his country might live.
How those young men did their job!
Like a swarm of hornets they tackled disturbers at our meetings, regardless of superiority of numbers, however great, indifferent to wounds and bloodshed, inspired with the great idea of blazing a trail for the sacred mission of our movement.
As early as the summer of 1920 the organization of squads of men as hall guards for maintaining order at our meetings was gradually assuming definite shape. By the spring of 1921 this body of men were sectioned off into squads of one hundred, which in turn were sub-divided into smaller groups.
The urgency for this was apparent, as meanwhile the number of our meetings had steadily increased. We still frequently met in the Munich Hofbräuhaus but more frequently in the large meeting halls throughout the city itself. In the autumn and winter of 1920–1921 our meetings in the Bürgerbräu and Munich Kindlbräu had assumed vast proportions and it was always the same picture that presented itself; namely, meetings of the NSDAP (The German National Socialist Labour Party) were always crowded out so that the police were compelled to close and bar the doors long before proceedings commenced.
The organization of defense guards for keeping order at our meetings cleared up a very difficult question. Up till then the movement had possessed no party badge and no party flag. The lack of these tokens was not only a disadvantage at that time but would prove intolerable in the future. The disadvantages were chiefly that members of the party possessed no outward broken of membership which linked them together, and it was absolutely unthinkable that for the future they should remain without some token which would be a symbol of the movement and could be set against that of the International.
More than once in my youth the psychological importance of such a symbol had become clearly evident to me and from a sentimental point of view also it was advisable. In Berlin, after the War, I was present at a mass-demonstration of Marxists in front of the Royal Palace and in the Lustgarten. A sea of red flags, red armlets and red flowers was in itself sufficient to give that huge assembly of about 120,000 persons an outward appearance of strength. I was now able to feel and understand how easily the man in the street succumbs to the hypnotic magic of such a grandiose piece of theatrical presentation.
The bourgeoisie, which as a party neither possesses or stands for any outlook at all, had therefore not a single banner. Their party was composed of 'patriots' who went about in the colours of the Reich. If these colors were the symbol of a definite philosophy then one could understand the rulers of the State regarding this flag as expressive of their philosophy, seeing that through their efforts the official Reich flag was expressive of their philosophy.
But in reality the position was otherwise.
The Reich was morticed together without the aid of the German bourgeoisie and the flag itself was born of the War and therefore merely a State flag possessing no importance in the sense of any particular ideological mission.
Only in one part of the German-speaking territory – in German-Austria – was there anything like a bourgeois party flag in evidence. Here a section of the national bourgeoisie selected the 1848 colours (black, red and gold) as their party flag and therewith created a symbol which, though of no importance from a weltanschauliche viewpoint, had, nevertheless, a revolutionary character from a national point of view. The most bitter opponents of this flag at that time, and this should not be forgotten today, were the Social Democrats and the Christian Socialists or clericals. They, in particular, were the ones who degraded and besmirched these colours in the same way as in 1918 they dragged black, white and red into the gutter. Of course, the black, red and gold of the German parties in the old Austria were the colours of the year 1848: that is to say, of a period likely to be regarded as somewhat visionary, but it was a period that had honest German souls as its representatives, although the Jews were lurking unseen as wire-pullers in the background. It was high treason and the shameful enslavement of the German territory that first of all made these colours so attractive to the Marxists of the Centre Party; so much so that today they revere them as their most cherished possession and use them as their own banners for the protection of the flag they once foully besmirched.
It is a fact, therefore, that, up till 1920, in opposition to the Marxists there was no flag that would have stood for a consolidated resistance to them. For even if the better political elements of the German bourgeoisie were loath to accept the suddenly discovered black, red and gold colours as their symbol after the year 1918, they nevertheless were incapable of counteracting this with a future programme of their own that would correspond to the new trend of affairs. At the most, they had a reconstruction of the old Reich in mind.
And it is to this way of thinking that the black, white and red colours of the old Reich are indebted for their resurrection as the flag of our so-called national bourgeois parties.
It was obvious that the symbol of a régime which had been overthrown by the Marxists under inglorious circumstances was not now worthy to serve as a banner under which the same Marxism was to be crushed in its turn. However much any decent German may love and revere those old colours, glorious when placed side by side in their youthful freshness, when he had fought under them and seen the sacrifice of so many lives, that flag had little value for the struggle of the future.
In our Movement I have always adopted the standpoint that it was a really lucky thing for the German nation that it had lost its old flag. This standpoint of mine was in strong contrast to that of the bourgeois politicians. It may be immaterial to us what the Republic does under its flag. But let us be deeply grateful to fate for having so graciously spared the most glorious war flag for all time from becoming an ignominious rag. The Reich of today, which sells itself and its people, must never be allowed to adopt the honourable and heroic black, white and red colours.
As long as the November outrage endures, that outrage may continue to bear its own external sign and not steal that of an honourable past. Our bourgeois politicians should awaken their consciences to the fact that whoever desires this State to have the black, white and red colours is pilfering from the past. The old flag was suitable only for the old Reich and, thank Heaven, the Republic chose the colours best suited to itself.
This was also the reason why we National Socialists recognized that hoisting the old colours would be no symbol of our special aims; for we had no wish to resurrect from the dead the old Reich which had been ruined through its own blunders, but to build up a new State.
The Movement which is fighting Marxism today along these lines must display on its banner the symbol of the new State.
The question of the new flag, that is to say the form and appearance it must take, kept us very busy in those days. Suggestions poured in from all quarters, which although well meant were more or less impossible in practice. The new flag had not only to become a symbol expressing our own struggle but on the other hand it was necessary that it should prove effective as a large poster. All those who busy themselves with the tastes of the public will recognize and appreciate the great importance of these apparently petty matters. In hundreds of thousands of cases a really striking emblem may be the first cause of awakening interest in a movement.
For this reason we declined all suggestions from various quarters for identifying our movement by means of a white flag with the old State or rather with those decrepit parties whose sole political objective is the restoration of past conditions. And, apart from this, white is not a colour capable of attracting and focusing public attention. It is a colour suitable only for young women's associations and not for a movement that stands for reform in a revolutionary period.
Black was also suggested – certainly well-suited to the times, but embodying no significance to empress the will behind our movement. And, finally, black is incapable of attracting attention.
White and blue was discarded, despite its admirable æsthetic appeal – as being the colours of an individual German Federal State – a State that, unfortunately, through its political attitude of particularist narrow-mindedness did not enjoy a good reputation. And, generally speaking, with these colours it would have been difficult to attract attention to our movement. The same applies to black and white.
Black, red and gold did not enter the question at all.
And this also applies to black, white and red for reasons already stated. At least, not in the form hitherto in use. But the effectiveness of these three colours is far superior to all the others and they are certainly the most strikingly harmonious combination to be found.
I myself was always for keeping the old colours, not only because I, as a soldier, regarded them as my most sacred possession, but because in their aesthetic effect, they conformed more than anything else to my personal taste. Accordingly I had to discard all the innumerable suggestions and designs which had been proposed for the new movement, among which were many that had incorporated the swastika into the old colours. I, as leader, was unwilling to make public my own design, as it was possible that someone else could come forward with a design just as good, if not better, than my own. As a matter of fact, a dental surgeon from Starnberg submitted a good design very similar to mine, with only one mistake, in that his swastika with curved corners was set upon a white background.
After innumerable trials I decided upon a final form – a flag of red material with a white disc bearing in its centre a black swastika. After many trials I obtained the correct proportions between the dimensions of the flag and of the white central disc, as well as that of the swastika. And this is how it has remained ever since.
At the same time we immediately ordered the corresponding armlets for our squad of men who kept order at meetings, armlets of red material, a central white disc with the black swastika upon it. Herr Füss, a Munich goldsmith, supplied the first practical and permanent design.
The new flag appeared in public in the midsummer of 1920. It suited our movement admirably, both being new and young. Not a soul had seen this flag before; its effect at that time was something akin to that of a blazing torch. We ourselves experienced almost a boyish delight when one of the ladies of the party who had been entrusted with the making of the flag finally handed it over to us. And a few months later those of us in Munich were in possession of six of these flags. The steadily increasing strength of our hall guards was a main factor in popularizing the symbol.
And indeed a symbol it proved to be.
Not only because it incorporated those revered colours expressive of our homage to the glorious past and which once brought so much honour to the German nation, but this symbol was also an eloquent expression of the will behind the movement. We National Socialists regarded our flag as being the embodiment of our party programme. The red expressed the social thought underlying the movement. White the national thought. And the swastika signified the mission allotted to us – the struggle for the victory of Aryan mankind and at the same time the triumph of the ideal of creative work which is in itself and always will be anti-Semitic.
Two years later, when our squad of hall guards had long since grown into storm detachments (Sturm-Abteilung), it seemed necessary to give this defensive organization of a young philosophy a particular symbol of victory, namely a Standard. I also designed this and entrusted the execution of it to an old party comrade, Herr Gahr, who was a goldsmith. Ever since that time this Standard has been the distinctive token of the National Socialist struggle.
The increasing interest taken in our meetings, particularly during 1920, compelled us at times to hold two meetings a week. Crowds gathered round our posters; the large meeting halls in the town were always filled and tens of thousands of people, who had been led astray by the teachings of Marxism, found their way to us and assisted in the work of fighting for the liberation of the Reich. The public in Munich had got to know us. We were being spoken about. The words 'National Socialist' had become common property to many and signified for them a definite party programme. Our circle of supporters and even of members was constantly increasing, so that in the winter of 1920–21 we were able to appear as a strong party in Munich.
At that time there was no party in Munich with the exception of the Marxist parties – certainly no nationalist party – which was able to hold such mass demonstrations as ours. The Munich Kindl Hall, which held 5,000 people, was more than once overcrowded and up till then there was only one other hall, the Krone Circus Hall, into which we had not ventured.
At the end of January 1921 there was again great cause for anxiety in Germany. The Paris Agreement, by which Germany pledged herself to pay the crazy sum of a hundred milliards of gold marks, was to be confirmed by the London Ultimatum.
Thereupon an old-established Munich working committee, representative of so-called völkisch groups, deemed it advisable to call for a public meeting of protest. I became nervous and restless when I saw that a lot of time was being wasted and nothing undertaken. At first a meeting was suggested in the König Platz; on second thoughts this was turned down, as someone feared the proceedings might be wrecked by Red elements. Another suggestion was a demonstration in front of the Feldherrn Hall, but this also came to nothing. Finally a combined meeting in the Munich Kindl Hall was suggested. Meanwhile, day after day had gone by; the big parties had entirely ignored the terrible event, and the working committee could not decide on a definite date for holding the demonstration.
On Tuesday, February 1st, I put forward an urgent demand for a final decision. I was put off until Wednesday. On that day I demanded to be told clearly if and when the meeting was to take place. The reply was again uncertain and evasive, it being stated that it was 'intended' to arrange a demonstration that day week.
At that I lost all patience and decided to conduct a demonstration of protest on my own. At noon on Wednesday I dictated in ten minutes the text of the poster and at the same time hired the Krone Circus Hall for the next day, February 3rd.
In those days this was a tremendous venture. Not only because of the uncertainty of filling that vast hall, but also because of the risk of the meeting being wrecked.
Numerically our squad of hall guards was not strong enough for this vast hall. I was also uncertain about what to do in case the meeting was broken up – a huge circus building being a different proposition from an ordinary meeting hall. But events showed that my fears were misplaced, the opposite being the case. In that vast building a squad of wreckers could be tackled and subdued more easily than in a cramped hall.
One thing was certain: A failure would throw us back for a long time to come. If one meeting was wrecked our prestige would be seriously injured and our opponents would be encouraged to repeat their success. That would lead to sabotage of our work in connection with further meetings and months of difficult struggle would be necessary to overcome this.
We had only one day in which to post our bills, Thursday. Unfortunately it rained on the morning of that day and there was reason to fear that many people would prefer to remain at home rather than hurry to a meeting through rain and snow, especially when there was likely to be violence and bloodshed.
And indeed on that Thursday morning I was suddenly struck with fear that the hall might never be filled to capacity, which would have made me ridiculous in the eyes of the working committee. I therefore immediately dictated various leaflets, had them printed and distributed in the afternoon. Of course they contained an invitation to attend the meeting.
Two lorries which I hired were draped as much as possible in red, each had our new flag hoisted on it and was then filled with fifteen or twenty members of our party. Orders were given the members to canvas the streets thoroughly, distribute leaflets and conduct propaganda for the mass meeting to be held that evening. It was the first time that lorries had driven through the streets bearing flags and not manned by Marxists. The public stared open-mouthed at these red-draped cars, and in the outlying districts clenched fists were angrily raised at this new evidence of 'provocation of the proletariat'. Were not the Marxists the only ones entitled to hold meetings and drive about in motor lorries?
At seven o'clock in the evening only a few had gathered in the circus hall. I was being kept informed by telephone every ten minutes and was becoming uneasy. Usually at seven or a quarter past our meeting halls were already half filled; sometimes even packed. But I soon found out the reason why I was uneasy. I had entirely forgotten to take into account the huge dimensions of this new meeting place. A thousand people in the Hofbräuhaus was quite an impressive sight, but the same number in the Circus building was swallowed up in its dimensions and was hardly noticeable. Shortly afterwards I received more hopeful reports and at a quarter to eight I was informed that the hall was three-quarters filled, with huge crowds still lined up at the pay boxes. I then left for the meeting.
I arrived at the Circus building at two minutes past eight. There was still a crowd of people outside, partly inquisitive people and many opponents who preferred to wait outside for developments.
When I entered the great hall I felt the same joy I had felt a year previously at the first meeting in the Munich Hofbräu Banquet Hall; but it was not until I had forced my way through the solid wall of people and reached the platform that I perceived the full measure of our success. The hall was before me, like a huge shell, packed with thousands and thousands of people. Even the arena was densely crowded. More than 5,600 tickets had been sold and, allowing for the unemployed, poor students and our own detachments of men for keeping order, a crowd of about 6,500 must have been present.
My theme was 'Future or Downfall' and I was filled with joy at the conviction that the future was represented by the crowds that I was addressing.
I began, and spoke for about two and a half hours. I had the feeling after the first half-hour that the meeting was going to be a big success. Contact had been at once established with all those thousands of individuals. After the first hour the speech was already being received by spontaneous outbreaks of applause, but after the second hour this died down to a solemn stillness which I was to experience so often later on in this same hall, and which will for ever be remembered by all those present. Nothing broke this impressive silence and only when the last word had been spoken did the meeting give vent to its feelings by singing the national anthem.
I watched the scene during the next twenty minutes, as the vast hall slowly emptied itself, and only then did I leave the platform, a happy man, and made my way home.
Photographs were taken of this first meeting in the Krone Circus Hall in Munich. They are more eloquent than words to demonstrate the success of this demonstration. The bourgeois papers reproduced photographs and reported the meeting as having been merely 'nationalist' in character; in their usual modest fashion they omitted all mention of its promoters.
Thus for the first time we had developed far beyond the dimensions of an ordinary party. We could no longer be ignored. And to dispel all doubt that the meeting was merely an isolated success, I immediately arranged for another at the Circus Hall in the following week, and again we had the same success. Once more the vast hall was overflowing with people; so much so that I decided to hold a third meeting during the following week, which also proved a similar success.
After these initial successes early in 1921 I increased our activity in Munich still further. I not only held meetings once a week, but during some weeks even two were regularly held and very often during midsummer and autumn this increased to three. We met regularly at the Circus Hall and it gave us great satisfaction to see that every meeting brought us the same measure of success.
The result was shown in an ever-increasing number of supporters and members into our party.
Naturally, such success did not allow our opponents to sleep soundly. At first their tactics fluctuated between the use of terror and silence in our regard. Then they recognized that neither terror nor silence could hinder the progress of our movement. So they had recourse to a supreme act of terror which was intended to put a definite end to our activities in the holding of meetings.
As a pretext for action along this line they availed themselves of a very mysterious attack on one of the Landtag deputies, named Erhard Auer. It was declared that someone had fired several shots at this man one evening. This meant that he was not shot but that an attempt had been made to shoot him. A fabulous presence of mind and heroic courage on the part of Social Democratic leaders not only prevented the sacrilegious intention from taking effect but also put the crazy would-be assassins to flight, like the cowards that they were. They were so quick and fled so far that subsequently the police could not find even the slightest traces of them. This mysterious episode was used by the organ of the Social Democratic Party to arouse public feeling against the movement, and while doing this it delivered its old rigmarole about the tactics that were to be employed the next time. Their purpose was to see to it that our movement should not grow but should be immediately hewn down root and branch by the hefty arm of the proletariat.
A few days later the real attack came. It was decided finally to interrupt one of our meetings which was billed to take place in the Munich Hofbräuhaus, and at which I myself was to speak.
On November 4th, 1921, in the evening between six and seven o'clock I received the first precise news that the meeting would positively be broken up and that to carry out this action our adversaries had decided to send to the meeting great masses of workmen employed in certain 'Red' factories.
It was due to an unfortunate accident that we did not receive this news sooner. On that day we had given up our old business office in the Sternecker Gasse in Munich and moved into other quarters; or rather we had given up the old offices and our new quarters were not yet in functioning order. The telephone arrangements had been cut off by the former tenants and had not yet been reinstalled. Hence it happened that several attempts made that day to inform us by telephone of the break-up which had been planned for the evening did not reach us.
Consequently our order troops were not present in strong force at that meeting. There was only one squad present, which did not consist of the usual one hundred men, but only of about forty-six. And our telephone connections were not yet sufficiently organized to be able to give the alarm in the course of an hour or so, so that a sufficiently powerful number of order troops to deal with the situation could be called. It must also be added that on several previous occasions we had been forewarned, but nothing special happened. The old proverb, 'Revolutions which were announced have scarcely ever come off', had hitherto been proved true in our regard.
Possibly for this reason also sufficiently strong precautions had not been taken on that day to cope with the brutal determination of our opponents to break up our meeting.
Finally, we did not believe that the Hofbräuhaus in Munich was suitable for the interruptive tactics of our adversaries. We had feared such a thing far more in the bigger halls, especially that of the Krone Circus. But on this point we learned a very serviceable lesson that evening. Later, we studied this whole question according to a scientific system and arrived at results, both interesting and incredible, and which subsequently were an essential factor in the direction of our organization and in the tactics of our Storm Troops.
When I arrived in the entrance halt of the Hofbräuhaus at 7.45 that evening I realizcd that there could be no doubt as to what the 'Reds' intended. The hall was filled, and for that reason the police had barred the entrances. Our adversaries, who had arrived very early, were in the hall, and our followers were for the most part outside. The small bodyguard awaited me at the entrance. I had the doors leading to the principal hall closed and then asked the bodyguard of forty-five or forty-six men to come forward. I made it clear to the boys that perhaps on that evening for the first time they would have to show their unbending and unbreakable loyalty to the movement and that not one of us should leave the hall unless carried out dead. I added that I would remain in the hall and that I did not believe that one of them would abandon me, and that if I saw any one of them act the coward I myself would personally tear off his armlet and his badge. I demanded of them that they should come forward if the slightest attempt to sabotage the meeting were made and that they must remember that the best defence is always attack.
I was greeted with a triple 'Heil' which sounded more hoarse and violent than usual.
Then I advanced through the hall and could take in the situation with my own eyes. Our opponents sat closely huddled together and tried to pierce me through with their looks. Innumerable faces glowing with hatred and rage were fixed on me, while others with sneering grimaces shouted at me together. Now they would 'Finish with us. We must look out for our entrails. To-day they would smash in our faces once and for all.' And there were other expressions of an equally elegant character. They knew that they were there in superior numbers and they acted accordingly.
Yet we were able to open the meeting; and I began to speak. In the Hall of the Hofbräuhaus I stood always at the side, away from the entry and on top of a beer table. Therefore I was always right in the midst of the audience. Perhaps this circumstance was responsible for creating a certain feeling and a sense of agreement which I never found elsewhere.
Before me, and especially towards my left, there were only opponents, seated or standing. They were mostly robust youths and men from the Maffei Factory, from Kustermann's, and from the factories on the Isar, etc. Along the right-hand wall of the hall they were thickly massed quite close to my table. They now began to order litre mugs of beer, one after the other, and to throw the empty mugs under the table. In this way whole batteries were collected. I should have been surprised had this meeting ended peacefully.
In spite of all the interruptions, I was able to speak for about an hour and a half and I felt as if I were master of the situation. Even the ringleaders of the disturbers appeared to be convinced of this; for they steadily became more uneasy, often left the hall, returned and spoke to their men in an obviously nervous way.
A small psychological error which I committed in replying to an interruption, and the mistake of which I myself was conscious the moment the words had left my mouth, gave the sign for the outbreak.
There were a few furious outbursts and all in a moment a man jumped on a seat and shouted "Liberty". At that signal the champions of liberty began their work.
In a few moments the hall was filled with a yelling and shrieking mob. Numerous beer-mugs flew like howitzers above their heads. Amid this uproar one heard the crash of chair legs, the crashing of mugs, groans and yells and screams.
It was a mad spectacle. I stood where I was and could observe my boys doing their duty, every one of them.
There I had the chance of seeing what a bourgeois meeting could be.
The dance had hardly begun when my Storm Troops, as they were called from that day onwards, launched their attack. Like wolves they threw themselves on the enemy again and again in parties of eight or ten and began steadily to thrash them out of the hall. After five minutes I could see hardly one of them that was not streaming with blood. Then I realized what kind of men many of them were, above all my brave Maurice Hess, who is my private secretary today, and many others who, even though seriously wounded, attacked again and again as long as they could stand on their feet. Twenty minutes long the pandemonium continued. Then the opponents, who had numbered seven or eight hundred, had been driven from the hall or hurled out headlong by my men, who had not numbered fifty. Only in the left corner a big crowd still stood out against our men and put up a bitter fight. Then two pistol shots rang out from the entrance to the hall in the direction of the platform and now a wild din of shooting broke out from all sides. One's heart almost rejoiced at this spectacle which recalled memories of the War.
At that moment it was not possible to identify the person who had fired the shots. But at any rate I could see that my boys renewed the attack with increased fury until finally the last disturbers were overcome and flung out of the hall.
About twenty-five minutes had passed since it all began. The hall looked as if a bomb had exploded there. Many of my comrades had to be bandaged and others taken away. But we remained masters of the situation. Hermann Essen, who was chairman of the meeting, announced: "The meeting will continue. The speaker shall proceed." So I went on with my speech.
When we ourselves declared the meeting at an end an excited police officer rushed in, waved his hands and declared: "The meeting is dissolved."
Without wishing to do so I had to laugh at this example of the law's delay. It was real police pompousness. The smaller they are the greater they must always try to appear.
That evening we learned a real lesson. And our adversaries never forgot the lesson they had received.
Up to the autumn of 1923 the Münchener post did not again mention the clenched fists of the Proletariat.


Chapter VIII: The Strong Man is Mightiest Alone

In the preceding chapter I mentioned the existence of a co-operative union between the German patriotic associations. Here I shall deal briefly with this question.
In speaking of a co-operative union we generally mean a group of associations which, for the purpose of facilitating their work, establish mutual relations for collaborating with one another along certain lines, appointing a common directorate with varying powers and thenceforth carrying out a common line of action. The average citizen is pleased and reassured when he hears that these associations, by establishing a co-operative union among one another, have at long last discovered a common platform on which they can stand united and have eliminated all grounds of mutual difference. Therewith a general conviction arises, to the effect that such a union is an immense gain in strength and that small groups which were weak as long as they stood alone have now suddenly become strong. Yet this conviction is for the most part a mistaken one.
It will be interesting and, in my opinion, important for the better understanding of this question if we try to get a clear notion of how it comes about that these associations, unions, etc., are established, when all of them declare that they have the same ends in view. In itself it would be logical to expect that one aim should be fought for by a single association and it would be more reasonable if there were not a number of associations fighting for the same aim. In the beginning there was undoubtedly only one association which had this one fixed aim in view. One man proclaimed a truth somewhere and, calling for the solution of a definite question, fixed his aim and founded a movement for the purpose of carrying his views into effect.
That is how an association or a party is founded, the scope of whose programme is either the abolition of existing evils or the positive establishment of a certain order of things in the future.
Once such a movement has come into existence it may lay practical claim to certain priority rights. The natural course of things would now be that all those who wish to fight for the same objective as this movement is striving for should identify themselves with it and thus increase its strength, so that the common purpose in view may be all the better served. Especially men of superior intelligence must feel, one and all, that by joining the movement they are establishing precisely those conditions which are necessary for practical success in the common struggle. Accordingly it is reasonable and, in a certain sense, honest – which honesty, as I shall show later, is an element of very great importance – that only one movement should be founded for the purpose of attaining the one aim.
The fact that this does not happen must be attributed to two causes. The first may almost be described as tragic. The second is a matter for pity, because it has its foundation in the weaknesses of human nature. But, on going to the bottom of things, I see in both causes only facts which give still another ground for strengthening our will, our energy and intensity of purpose; so that finally, through the higher development of the human faculties, the solution of the problem in question may be rendered possible.
The tragic reason why it so often happens that the pursuit of one definite task is not left to one association alone is as follows: Generally speaking, every action carried out on the grand style in this world is the expression of a desire that has already existed for a long time in millions of human hearts, a longing which may have been nourished in silence. Yes, it may happen that throughout centuries men may have been yearning for the solution of a definite problem, because they have been suffering under an unendurable order of affairs, without seeing on the far horizon the coming fulfilment of the universal longing. Nations which are no longer capable of finding an heroic deliverance from such a sorrowful fate may be looked upon as effete. But, on the other hand, nothing gives better proof of the vital forces of a people and the consequent guarantee of its right to exist than that one day, through a happy decree of Destiny, a man arises who is capable of liberating his people from some great oppression, or of wiping out some bitter distress, or of calming the national soul which had been tormented through its sense of insecurity, and thus fulfilling what had long been the universal yearning of the people.
An essential characteristic of what are called the great questions of the time is that thousands undertake the task of solving them and that many feel themselves called to this task: yea, even that Destiny itself has proposed many for the choice, so that through the free play of forces the stronger and bolder shall finally be victorious and to him shall be entrusted the task of solving the problem.
Thus it may happen that for centuries many are discontented with the form in which their religious life expresses itself and yearn for a renovation of it; and so it may happen that through this impulse of the soul some dozens of men may arise who believe that, by virtue of their understanding and their knowledge, they are called to solve the religious difficulties of the time and accordingly present themselves as the prophets of a new teaching or at least as declared adversaries of the standing beliefs.
Here also it is certain that the natural law will take its course, inasmuch as the strongest will be destined to fulfil the great mission. But usually the others are slow to acknowledge that only one man is called. On the contrary, they all believe that they have an equal right to engage in the solution of the diffculties in question and that they are equally called to that task. Their contemporary world is generally quite unable to decide which of all these possesses the highest gifts and accordingly merits the support of all.
So in the course of centuries, or indeed often within the same epoch, different men establish different movements to struggle towards the same end. At least the end is declared by the founders of the movements to be the same, or may be looked upon as such by the masses of the people. The populace nourishes vague desires and has only general opinions, without having any precise notion of their own ideals and desires or of the question whether and how it is impossible for these ideals and desires to be fulfilled.
The tragedy lies in the fact that many men struggle to reach the same objective by different roads, each one genuinely believing in his own mission and holding himself in duty bound to follow his own road without any regard for the others.
These movements, parties, religious groups, etc., originate entirely independently of one another out of the general urge of the time, and all with a view to working towards the same goal. It may seem a tragic thing, at least at first sight, that this should be so, because people are too often inclined to think that forces which are dispersed in different directions would attain their ends far more quickly and more surely if they were united in one common effort. But that is not so. For Nature herself decides according to the rules of her inexorable logic. She leaves these diverse groups to compete with one another and dispute the palm of victory and thus she chooses the clearest, shortest and surest way along which she leads the movement to its final goal.
How could one decide from outside which is the best way, if the forces at hand were not allowed free play, if the final decision were to rest with the doctrinaire judgment of men who are so infatuated with their own superior knowledge that their minds are not open to accept the indisputable proof presented by manifest success, which in the last analysis always gives the final confirmation of the justice of a course of action.
Hence, though diverse groups march along different routes towards the same objective, as soon as they come to know that analogous efforts are being made around them, they will have to study all the more carefully whether they have chosen the best way and whether a shorter way may not be found and how their efforts can best be employed to reach the objective more quickly.
Through this rivalry each individual protagonist develops his faculties to a still higher pitch of perfection and the human race has frequently owed its progress to the lessons learned from the misfortunes of former attempts which have come to grief. Therefore we may conclude that we come to know the better ways of reaching final results through a state of things which at first sight appeared tragic; namely, the initial dispersion of individual efforts, wherein each group was unconsciously responsible for such dispersion.
In studying the lessons of history with a view to finding a way for the solution of the German problem, the prevailing opinion at one time was that there were two possible paths along which that problem might be solved and that these two paths should have united from the very beginning. The chief representatives and champions of these two paths were Austria and Prussia respectively, Habsburg and Hohenzollern. All the rest, according to this prevalent opinion, ought to have entrusted their united forces to the one or the other party. But at that time the path of the most prominent representative, the Habsburg, would have been taken, though the Austrian policy would never have led to the foundation of a united German Reich.
Finally, a strong and united German Reich arose out of that which many millions of Germans deplored in their hearts as the last and most terrible manifestation of our fratricidal strife. The truth is that the German Imperial Crown was retrieved on the battle field of Königgrätz and not in the fights that were waged before Paris, as was commonly asserted afterwards.
Thus the foundation of the German Reich was not the consequence of any common will working along common lines, but it was much more the outcome of a deliberate struggle for hegemony, though the protagonists were often hardly conscious of this. And from this struggle Prussia finally came out victorious. Anybody who is not so blinded by partisan politics as to deny this truth will have to agree that the so-called wisdom of men would never have come to the same wise decision as the wisdom of Life itself, that is to say, the free play of forces, finally brought to realization. For in the German lands of two hundred years before who would seriously have believed that Hohenzollern Prussia, and not Habsburg, would become the germ cell, the founder and the tutor of the new Reich? And, on the other hand, who would deny today that Destiny thus acted wiser than human wisdom. Who could now imagine a German Reich based on the foundations of an effete and degenerate dynasty?
No. The general evolution of things, even though it took a century of struggle, placed the best in the position that it had merited.
And that will always be so. Therefore it is not to be regretted if different men set out to attain the same objective. In this way the strongest and swiftest becomes recognized and turns out to be the victor.
Now there is a second cause for the fact that often in the lives of nations several movements which show the same characteristics strive along different ways to reach what appears to be the same goal. This second cause is not at all tragic, but just something that rightly calls forth pity. It arises from a sad mixture of envy, jealousy, ambition, and the itch for taking what belongs to others. Unfortunately these failings are often found united in single specimens of the human species.
The moment a man arises who profoundly understands the distress of his people and, having diagnosed the evil with perfect accuracy, takes measures to cure it; the moment he fixes his aim and chooses the means to reach it – then paltry and pettifogging people become all attention and eagerly follow the doings of this man who has thus come before the public gaze. Just like sparrows who are apparently indifferent, but in reality are firmly intent on the movements of the fortunate companion with the morsel of bread so that they may snatch it from him if he should momentarily relax his hold on it, so it is also with the human species. All that is needed is that one man should strike out on a new road and then a crowd of poltroons will prick up their ears and begin to sniff for whatever little booty may possibly lie at the end of that road. The moment they think they have discovered where the booty is to be gathered they hurry to find another way which may prove to be quicker in reaching that goal.
As soon as a new movement is founded and has formulated a definite programme, people of that kind come forward and proclaim that they are fighting for the same cause. This does not imply that they are ready honestly to join the ranks of such a movement and thus recognize its right of priority. It implies rather that they intend to steal the programme and found a new party on it. In doing this they are shameless enough to assure the unthinking public that for a long time they had intended to take the same line of action as the other has now taken, and frequently they succeed in thus placing themselves in a favourable light, instead of arousing the general disapprobation which they justly deserve. For it is a piece of gross impudence to take what has already been inscribed on another's flag and display it on one's own, to steal the programme of another, and then to form a separate group as if all had been created by the new founder of this group. The impudence of such conduct is particularly demonstrated when the individuals who first caused dispersion and disruption by their new foundation are those who – as experience has shown – are most emphatic in proclaiming the necessity of union and unity the moment they find they cannot catch up with their adversary's advance.
It is to that kind of conduct that the so-called 'patriotic disintegration' is to be attributed.
Certainly in the years 1918 – 1919 the founding of a multitude of new groups, parties, etc., calling themselves 'Patriotic,' was a natural phenomenon of the time, for which the founders were not at all responsible. By 1920 the National Socialist German Labour Party had slowly crystallized from all these parties and had become supreme. There could be no better proof of the sterling honesty of certain individual founders than the fact that many of them decided, in a really admirable manner, to sacrifice their manifestly less successful movements to the stronger movement, by joining it unconditionally and dissolving their own.
This is specially true in regard to Julius Streicher, who was at that time the protagonist of the German Socialist party in Nürnberg. The National Socialist German Labour Party had been founded with similar aims in view, but quite independently of the other. I have already said that Streicher, then a teacher in Nürnberg, was the chief protagonist of the German Socialist Party. He had a sacred conviction of the mission and future of his own movement. As soon, however, as the superior strength and stronger growth of the National Socialist Party became clear and unquestionable to his mind, he gave up his work in the German Socialist Party and called upon his followers to fall into line with the National Socialist German Labour Party, which had come out victorious from the mutual contest, and carry on the fight within its ranks for the common cause. The decision was personally a difficult one for him, but it showed a profound sense of honesty.
When that first period of the movement was over there remained no further dispersion of forces: for their honest intentions had led the men of that time to the same honourable, straightforward and just conclusion. What we now call the 'patriotic disintegration' owes its existence exclusively to the second of the two causes which I have mentioned. Ambitious men who at first had no ideas of their own, and still less any concept of aims to be pursued, felt themselves 'called' exactly at that moment in which the success of the National Socialist German Labour Party became unquestionable.
Suddenly programmes appeared which were mere transcripts of ours. Ideas were proclaimed which had been taken from us. Aims were set up on behalf of which we had been fighting for several years, and ways were mapped out which the National Socialists had for a long time trodden. All kinds of means were resorted to for the purpose of trying to convince the public that, although the National Socialist German Labour Party had now been for a long time in existence, it was found necessary to establish these new parties. But all these phrases were just as insincere as the motives behind them were ignoble.
In reality all this was grounded only on one dominant motive. That motive was the personal ambition of the founders, who wished to play a part in which their own pigmy talents could contribute nothing original except the gross effrontery which they displayed in appropriating the ideas of others, a mode of conduct which in ordinary life is looked upon as thieving.
At that time there was not an idea or concept launched by other people which these political kleptomaniacs did not seize upon at once for the purpose of applying to their own base uses. Those who did all this were the same people who subsequently, with tears in their eyes, profoundly deplored the 'patriotic disintegration' and spoke unceasingly about the 'necessity of unity'. In doing this they nurtured the secret hope that they might be able to cry down the others, who would tire of hearing these loud-mouthed accusations and would end up by abandoning all claim to the ideas that had been stolen from them and would abandon to the thieves not only the task of carrying these ideas into effect but also the task of carrying on the movements of which they themselves were the original founders.
When that did not succeed, and the new enterprises, thanks to the paltry mentality of their promoters, did not show the favourable results which had been promised beforehand, then they became more modest in their pretences and were happy if they could land themselves in one of the so-called 'co-operative unions'.
At that period everything which could not stand on its own feet joined one of those co-operative unions, believing that eight lame people hanging on to one another could force a gladiator to surrender to them.
But if among all these cripples there was one who was sound of limb he had to use all his strength to sustain the others and thus he himself was practically paralysed.
We ought to look upon the question of joining these working coalitions as a tactical problem, but, in coming to a decision, we must never forget the following fundamental principle:
Through the formation of a working coalition associations which are weak in themselves can never be made strong, whereas it can and does happen not infrequently that a strong association loses its strength by joining in a coalition with weaker ones. It is a mistake to believe that a factor of strength will result from the coalition of weak groups; because experience shows that under all forms and all conditions the majority represents the duffers and poltroons. Hence a multiplicity of associations, under a directorate of many heads, elected by these same associations, is abandoned to the control of poltroons and weaklings. Through such a coalition the free play of forces is paralysed, the struggle for the selection of the best is abolished and therewith the necessary and final victory of the healthier and stronger is impeded. Coalitions of that kind are inimical to the process of natural development, because for the most part they hinder rather than advance the solution of the problem which is being fought for.
It may happen that, from considerations of a purely tactical kind, the supreme command of a movement whose goal is set in the future will enter into a coalition with such associations for the treatment of special questions and may also stand on a common platform with them, but this can be only for a short and limited period. Such a coalition must not be permanent, if the movement does not wish to renounce its liberating mission. Because if it should become indissolubly tied up in such a combination it would lose the capacity and the right to allow its own forces to work freely in following out a natural development, so as to overcome rivals and attain its own objective triumphantly.
It must never be forgotten that nothing really great in this world has ever been achieved through coalitions, but that such achievements have always been due to the triumph of the individual. Successes achieved through coalitions, owing to the very nature of their source, carry the germs of future disintegration in them from the very start; so much so that they have already forfeited what has been achieved. The great revolutions which have taken place in human thought and have veritably transformed the aspect of the world would have been inconceivable and impossible to carry out except through titanic struggles waged between individual natures, but never as the enterprises of coalitions.
And, above all things, the People's State will never be created by the desire for compromise inherent in a patriotic coalition, but only by the iron will of a single movement which has successfully come through in the struggle with all the others.


Chapter IX: Basic Ideas Regarding the Meaning and Organization of the SA

The strength of the old state rested on three pillars: the monarchical form of government, the civil service, and the army. The Revolution of 1918 abolished the form of government, dissolved the army and abandoned the civil service to the corruption of party politics. Thus the essential supports of what is called the Authority of the State were shattered. This authority nearly always depends on three elements, which are the essential foundations of all authority.
Popular support is the first element which is necessary for the creation of authority. But an authority resting on that foundation alone is still quite frail, uncertain and vacillating. Hence everyone who finds himself vested with an authority that is based only on popular support must take measures to improve and consolidate the foundations of that authority by the creation of force. Accordingly we must look upon power, that is to say, the capacity to use force, as the second foundation on which all authority is based. This foundation is more stable and secure, but not always stronger, than the first. If popular support and power are united together and can endure for a certain time, then an authority may arise which is based on a still stronger foundation, namely, the authority of tradition. And, finally, if popular support, power, and tradition are united together, then the authority based on them may be looked upon as invincible.
In Germany the Revolution abolished this last foundation. There was no longer even a traditional authority. With the collapse of the old Reich, the suppression of the monarchical form of government, the destruction of all the old insignia of greatness and the imperial symbols, tradition was shattered at a blow. The result was that the authority of the State was shaken to its foundations.
The second pillar of statal authority, namely power, also ceased to exist. In order to carry through the Revolution it was necessary to dissolve that body which had hitherto incorporated the organized force and power of the State, namely, the Army. Indeed, some detached fragments of the Army itself had to be employed as fighting elements in the Revolution. The Armies at the front were not subjected in the same measure to this process of disruption; but as they gradually left farther behind them the fields of glory on which they had fought heroically for four-and-half years, they were attacked by the solvent acid that had permeated the Fatherland; and when they arrived at the demobilizing centres they fell into that state of confusion which was styled voluntary obedience in the time of the Soldiers' Councils.
Of course it was out of the question to think of founding any kind of authority on this crowd of mutineering soldiers, who looked upon military service as a work of eight hours per day. Therefore the second element, that which guarantees the stability of authority, was also abolished and the Revolution had only the original element, popular support, on which to build up its authority. But this basis was extraordinarily insecure. By means of a few violent thrusts the Revolution had shattered the old statal edifice to its deepest foundations, but only because the normal equilibrium within the social structure of the nation had already been destroyed by the war.
Every national body is made up of three main classes. At one extreme we have the best of the people, taking the word 'best' here to indicate those who are highly endowed with the civic virtues and are noted for their courage and their readiness to sacrifice their private interests. At the other extreme are the worst dregs of humanity, in whom vice and egotistic interests prevail. Between these two extremes stands the third class, which is made up of the broad middle stratum, who do not represent radiant heroism or vulgar vice.
The stages of a nation's rise are accomplished exclusively under the leadership of the best extreme.
Times of normal and symmetrical development, or of stable conditions, owe their existence and outwardly visible characteristics to the preponderating influence of the middle stratum. In this stage the two extreme classes are balanced against one another; in other words, they are relatively cancelled out.
Times of national collapse are determined by the preponderating influence of the worst elements.
It must be noted here, however, that the broad masses, which constitute what I have called the middle section, come forward and make their influence felt only when the two extreme sections are engaged in mutual strife. In case one of the extreme sections comes out victorious the middle section will readily submit to its domination. If the best dominate, the broad masses will follow it. Should the worst extreme turn out triumphant, then the middle section will at least offer no opposition to it; for the masses that constitute the middle class never fight their own battles.
The outpouring of blood for four-and-a-half years during the war destroyed the inner equilibrium between these three sections in so far as it can be said – though admitting the sacrifices made by the middle section – that the class which consisted of the best human elements almost completely disappeared through the loss of so much of its blood in the war, because it was impossible to replace the truly enormous quantity of heroic German blood which had been shed during those four-and-a-half years. In hundreds of thousands of cases it was always a matter of 'volunteers to the front', volunteers for patrol and duty, volunteer dispatch carriers, volunteers for establishing and working telephonic communications, volunteers for bridge-building, volunteers for the submarines, volunteers for the air service, volunteers for the storm battalions, and so on, and so on. During four-and-a-half years, and on thousands of occasions, there was always the call for volunteers and again for volunteers. And the result was always the same. Beardless young fellows or fully developed men, all filled with an ardent love for their country, urged on by their own courageous spirit or by a lofty sense of their duty – it was always such men who answered the call for volunteers. Tens of thousands, indeed hundreds of thousands, of such men came forward, so that that kind of human material steadily grew scarcer and scarcer. What did not actually fall was maimed in the fight or gradually had to join the ranks of the crippled because of the wounds they were constantly receiving, and thus they had to carry on interminably owing to the steady decrease in the supply of such men. In 1914 whole armies were composed of volunteers who, owing to a criminal lack of conscience on the part of our feckless parliamentarians, had not received any proper training in times of peace, and so were thrown as defenceless cannon-fodder to the enemy. The four hundred thousand who thus fell or were permanently maimed on the battlefields of Flanders could not be replaced any more. Their loss was something far more than merely numerical. With their death the scales, which were already too lightly weighed at that end of the social structure which represented our best human quality, now moved upwards rapidly, becoming heavier on the other end with those vulgar elements of infamy and cowardice – in short, there was an increase in the elements that constituted the worst extreme of our population.
And there was something more: While for four-and-a-half years our best human material was being thinned to an exceptional degree on the battlefields, our worst people wonderfully succeeded in saving themselves. For each hero who made the supreme sacrifice and ascended the steps of Valhalla, there was a shirker who cunningly dodged death on the plea of being engaged in business that was more or less useful at home.
And so the picture which presented itself at the end of the war was this: The great middle stratum of the nation had fulfilled its duty and paid its toll of blood. One extreme of the population, which was constituted of the best elements, had given a typical example of its heroism and had sacrificed itself almost to a man. The other extreme, which was constituted of the worst elements of the population, had preserved itself almost intact, through taking advantage of absurd laws and also because the authorities failed to enforce certain articles of the military code.
This carefully preserved scum of our nation then made the Revolution. And the reason why it could do so was that the extreme section composed of the best elements was no longer there to oppose it. It no longer existed.
Hence the German Revolution, from the very beginning, depended on only one section of the population. This act of Cain was not committed by the German people as such, but by an obscure canaille of deserters, hooligans, etc.
The man at the front gladly welcomed the end of the strife in which so much blood had been shed. He was happy to be able to return home and see his wife and children once again. But he had no moral connection with the Revolution. He did not like it, nor did he like those who had provoked and organized it. During the four-and-a-half years of that bitter struggle at the front he had come to forget the party hyenas at home and all their wrangling had become foreign to him.
The Revolution was really popular only with a small section of the German people: namely, that class and their accomplices who had selected the rucksack as the hall-mark of all honourable citizens in this new State. They did not like the Revolution for its own sake, though many people still erroneously believe the contrary, but for the consequences which followed in its train.
But it was very difficult to establish any abiding authority on the popular support given to these Marxist freebooters. And yet the young Republic stood in need of authority at any cost, unless it was ready to agree to be overthrown after a short period of chaos by an elementary force assembled from those last elements that still remained among the best extreme of the population.
The danger which those who were responsible for the Revolution feared most at that time was that, in the turmoil of the confusion which they themselves had created, the ground would suddenly be taken from under their feet, that they might be suddenly seized and transported to another terrain by an iron grip, such as has often appeared at these junctures in the history of nations. The Republic must be consolidated at all costs.
Hence it was forced almost immediately after its foundation to erect another pillar beside that wavering pillar of popularity. They found that power must be organized once again in order to procure a firmer foundation for their authority.
When those who had been the matadors of the Revolution in December 1918, and January and February 1919, felt the ground trembling beneath their feet they looked around them for men who would be ready to reinforce them with military support; for their feeble position was dependent only on whatever popular favour they enjoyed. The 'anti-militarist' Republic had need of soldiers. But the first and only pillar on which the authority of the State rested, namely, its popularity, was grounded only on a conglomeration of rowdies and thieves, burglars, deserters, shirkers, etc. Therefore in that section of the nation which we have called the evil extreme it was useless to look for men who would be willing to sacrifice their lives on behalf of a new ideal. The section which had nourished the revolutionary idea and carried out the Revolution was neither able nor willing to call on the soldiers to protect it. For that section had no wish whatsoever to organize a republican State, but to disorganize what already existed and thus satisfy its own instincts all the better. Their password was not the organization and construction of the German Republic, but rather the plundering of it.
Hence the cry for help sent out by the public representatives, who were beset by a thousand anxieties, did not find any response among this class of people, but rather provoked a feeling of bitterness and repudiation. For they looked upon this step as the beginning of a breach of faith and trust, and in the building up of an authority which was no longer based on popular support but also on force they saw the beginning of a hostile move against what the Revolution meant essentially for those elements. They feared that measures might be taken against the right to robbery and absolute domination on the part of a horde of thieves and plunderers – in short, the worst rabble – who had broken out of the convict prisons and left their chains behind.
The representatives of the people might cry out as much as they liked, but they could get no help from that rabble. The cries for help were met with the counter-cry 'traitors' by those very people on whose support the popularity of the regime was founded.
Then for the first time large numbers of young Germans were found who were ready to button on the military uniform once again in the service of 'Peace and Order', as they believed, shouldering the carbine and rifle and donning the steel helmet to defend the wreckers of the Fatherland. Volunteer corps were assembled and, although hating the Revolution, they began to defend it. The practical effect of their action was to render the Revolution firm and stable. In doing this they acted in perfect good faith.
The real organizer of the Revolution and the actual wire-puller behind it, the international Jew, had sized up the situation correctly. The German people were not yet ripe to be drawn into the blood swamp of Bolshevism, as the Russian people had been drawn. And that was because there was a closer racial union between the intellectual classes in Germany and the manual workers, and also because broad social strata were permeated with cultured people, such as was the case also in the other States of Western Europe; but this state of affairs was completely lacking in Russia. In that country the intellectual classes were mostly not of Russian nationality, or at least they did not have the racial characteristics of the Slav. The thin upper layer of intellectuals which then existed in Russia might be abolished at any time, because there was no intermediate stratum connecting it organically with the great mass of the people. There the mental and moral level of the great mass of the people was frightfully low.
In Russia the moment the agitators were successful in inciting broad masses of the people, who could not read or write, against the upper layer of intellectuals who were not in contact with the masses or permanently linked with them in any way – at that moment the destiny of Russia was decided, the success of the Revolution was assured. Thereupon the analphabetic Russian became the slave of his Jewish dictators who, on their side, were shrewd enough to name their dictatorship 'The Dictatorship of the People'.
In the case of Germany an additional factor must be taken into account. Here the Revolution could be carried into effect only if the Army could first be gradually dismembered. But the real author of the Revolution and of the process of disintegration in the Army was not the soldier who had fought at the front but the canaille which more or less shunned the light and which were either quartered in the home garrisons or were officiating as 'indispensables' somewhere in the business world at home. This army was reinforced by ten thousand deserters who, without running any particular risk, could turn their backs on the Front. At all times the real poltroon fears nothing so much as death. But at the Front he had death before his eyes every day in a thousand different shapes. There has always been one possible way, and one only, of making weak or wavering men, or even downright poltroons, face their duty steadfastly. This means that the deserter must be given to understand that his desertion will bring upon him just the very thing he is flying from. At the Front a man may die, but the deserter must die. Only this draconian threat against every attempt to desert the flag can have a terrifying effect, not merely on the individual but also on the mass. Therein lay the meaning and purpose of the military penal code.
It was a fine belief to think that the great struggle for the life of a nation could be carried through if it were based solely on voluntary fidelity arising from and sustained by the knowledge that such a struggle was necessary. The voluntary fulfilment of one's duty is a motive that determines the actions of only the best men, but not of the average type of men. Hence special laws are necessary; just as, for instance, the law against stealing, which was not made for men who are honest on principle but for the weak and unstable elements. Such laws are meant to hinder the evil-doer through their deterrent effect and thus prevent a state of affairs from arising in which the honest man is considered the more stupid, and which would end in the belief that it is better to have a share in the robbery than to stand by with empty hands or allow oneself to be robbed.
It was a mistake to believe that in a struggle which, according to all human foresight, might last for several years it would be possible to dispense with those expedients which the experience of hundreds and even of thousands of years had proved to be effective in making weak and unstable men face and fulfil their duty in difficult times and at moments of great nervous stress.
For the voluntary war hero it is, of course, not necessary to have the death penalty in the military code, but it is necessary for the cowardly egoists who value their own lives more than the existence of the community in the hour of national need. Such weak and characterless people can be held back from surrendering to their cowardice only by the application of the heaviest penalties. When men have to struggle with death every day and remain for weeks in trenches of mire, often very badly supplied with food, the man who is unsure of himself and begins to waver cannot be made to stick to his post by threats of imprisonment or even penal servitude. Only by a ruthless enforcement of the death penalty can this be effected. For experience shows that at such a time the recruit considers prison a thousand times more preferable than the battlefield. In prison at least his precious life is not in danger. The practical abolition of the death penalty during the war was a mistake for which we had to pay dearly. Such omission really meant that the military penal code was no longer recognized as valid. An army of deserters poured into the stations at the rear or returned home, especially in 1918, and there began to form that huge criminal organization with which we were suddenly faced, after November 7th, 1918, and which perpetrated the Revolution.
The Front had nothing to do with all this. Naturally, the soldiers at the Front were yearning for peace. But it was precisely that fact which represented a special danger for the Revolution. For when the German soldiers began to draw near home, after the Armistice, the revolutionaries were in trepidation and asked the same question again and again: What will the troops from the Front do? Will the field-greys stand for it?
During those weeks the Revolution was forced to give itself at least an external appearance of moderation, if it were not to run the risk of being wrecked in a moment by a few German divisions. For at that time, even if the commander of one division alone had made up his mind to rally the soldiers of his division, who had always remained faithful to him, in an onslaught to tear down the red flag and put the 'councils' up against the wall, or, if there was any resistance, to break it with trench-mortars and hand grenades, that division would have grown into an army of sixty divisions in less than four weeks. The Jew wire-pullers were terrified by this prospect more than by anything else; and to forestall this particular danger they found it necessary to give the Revolution a certain aspect of moderation. They dared not allow it to degenerate into Bolshevism, so they had to face the existing conditions by putting up the hypocritical picture of 'order and tranquillity'. Hence many important concessions, the appeal to the old civil service and to the heads of the old Army. They would be needed at least for a certain time, and only when they had served the purpose of Turks' Heads could the deserved kick-out be administered with impunity. Then the Republic would be taken entirely out of the hands of the old servants of the State and delivered into the claws of the revolutionaries.
They thought that this was the only plan which would succeed in duping the old generals and civil servants and disarm any eventual opposition beforehand through the apparently harmless and mild character of the new regime.
Practical experience has shown to what extent the plan succeeded.
The Revolution, however, was not made by the peaceful and orderly elements of the nation but rather by rioters, thieves and robbers. And the way in which the Revolution was developing did not accord with the intentions of these latter elements; still, on tactical grounds, it was not possible to explain to them the reasons for the course things were taking and make that course acceptable.
As Social Democracy gradually gained power it lost more and more the character of a crude revolutionary party. Of course in their inner hearts the Social Democrats wanted a revolution; and their leaders had no other end in view. Certainly not. But what finally resulted was only a revolutionary programme; but not a body of men who would be able to carry it out. A revolution cannot be carried through by a party of ten million members. If such a movement were attempted the leaders would find that it was not an extreme section of the population on which they had to depend butrather the broad masses of the middle stratum; hence the inert masses.
Recognizing all this, already during the war, the Jews caused the famous split in the Social Democratic Party. While the Social Democratic Party, conforming to the inertia of its mass following, clung like a leaden weight on the neck of the national defence, the actively radical elements were extracted from it and formed into new aggressive columns for purposes of attack. The Independent Socialist Party and the Spartacist League were the storm battalions of revolutionary Marxism. The objective assigned to them was to create a fait accompli, on the grounds of which the masses of the Social Democratic Party could take their stand, having been prepared for this event long beforehand. The feckless bourgeoisie had been estimated at its just value by the Marxists and treated en canaille. Nobody bothered about it, knowing well that in their canine servility the representatives of an old and worn-out generation would not be able to offer any serious resistance.
When the Revolution had succeeded and its artificers believed that the main pillars of the old State had been broken down, the Army returning from the Front began to appear in the light of a sinister sphinx and thus made it necessary to slow down the national course of the Revolution. The main body of the Social Democratic horde occupied the conquered positions, and the Independent Socialist and Spartacist storm battalions were side-tracked.
But that did not happen without a struggle.
The activist assault formations that had started the Revolution were dissatisfied and felt that they had been betrayed. They now wanted to continue the fight on their own account. But their illimitable racketeering became odious even to the wire-pullers of the Revolution. For the Revolution itself had scarcely been accomplished when two camps appeared. In the one camp were the elements of peace and order; in the other were those of blood and terror. Was it not perfectly natural that our bourgeoisie should rush with flying colours to the camp of peace and order? For once in their lives their piteous political organizations found it possible to act, inasmuch as the ground had been prepared for them on which they were glad to get a new footing; and thus to a certain extent they found themselves in coalition with that power which they hated but feared. The German political bourgeoisie achieved the high honour of being able to associate itself with the accursed Marxist leaders for the purpose of combating Bolshevism.
Thus the following state of affairs took shape as early as December 1918 and January 1919:
A minority constituted of the worst elements had made the Revolution. And behind this minority all the Marxist parties immediately fell into step. The Revolution itself had an outward appearance of moderation, which aroused against it the enmity of the fanatical extremists. These began to launch hand-grenades and fire machine-guns, occupying public buildings, thus threatening to destroy the moderate appearance of the Revolution. To prevent this terror from developing further a truce was concluded between the representatives of the new regime and the adherents of the old order, so as to be able to wage a common fight against the extremists. The result was that the enemies of the Republic ceased to oppose the Republic as such and helped to subjugate those who were also enemies of the Republic, though for quite different reasons. But a further result was that all danger of the adherents of the old State putting up a fight against the new was now definitely averted.
This fact must always be clearly kept in mind. Only by remembering it can we understand how it was possible that a nation in which nine-tenths of the people had not joined in a revolution, where seven-tenths repudiated it and six-tenths detested it – how this nation allowed the Revolution to be imposed upon it by the remaining one-tenth of the population.
Gradually the barricade heroes in the Spartacist camp petered out, and so did the nationalist patriots and idealists on the other side. As these two groups steadily dwindled, the masses of the middle stratum, as always happens, triumphed. The Bourgeoisie and the Marxists met together on the grounds of accomplished facts, and the Republic began to be consolidated. At first, however, that did not prevent the bourgeois parties from propounding their monarchist ideas for some time further, especially at the elections, whereby they endeavoured to conjure up the spirits of the dead past to encourage their own feeble-hearted followers. It was not an honest proceeding. In their hearts they had broken with the monarchy long ago; but the foulness of the new regime had begun to extend its corruptive action and make itself felt in the camp of the bourgeois parties. The common bourgeois politician now felt better in the slime of republican corruption than in the severe decency of the defunct State, which still lived in his memory.
As I have already pointed out, after the destruction of the old Army the revolutionary leaders were forced to strengthen statal authority by creating a new factor of power. In the conditions that existed they could do this only by winning over to their side the adherents of an outlook which was a direct contradiction of their own. From those elements alone it was possible slowly to create a new army which, limited numerically by the peace treaties, had to be subsequently transformed in spirit so as to become an instrument of the new regime.
Setting aside the defects of the old State, which really became the cause of the Revolution, if we ask how it was possible to carry the Revolution to a successful issue as a political act, we arrive at the following conclusions:
1. It was due to a process of dry rot in our conceptions of duty and obedience.
2. It was due also to the passive timidity of the Parties who were supposed to uphold the State.
To this the following must be added: The dry rot which attacked our concepts of duty and obedience was fundamentally due to our wholly non-national and purely State education. From this came the habit of confusing means and ends. Consciousness of duty, fulfilment of duty, and obedience, are not ends in themselves no more than the State is an end in itself; but they all ought to be employed as means to facilitate and assure the existence of a community of people who are kindred both physically and spiritually. At a moment when a nation is manifestly collapsing and when all outward signs show that it is on the point of becoming the victim of ruthless oppression, thanks to the conduct of a few miscreants, to obey these people and fulfil one's duty towards them is merely doctrinaire formalism, and indeed pure folly; whereas, on the other hand, the refusal of obedience and fulfilment of duty in such a case might save the nation from collapse. According to our current bourgeois idea of the State, if a divisional general received from above the order not to shoot he fulfilled his duty and therefore acted rightly in not shooting, because to the bourgeois mind blind formal obedience is a more valuable thing than the life of a nation. But according to the National Socialist concept it is not obedience to weak superiors that should prevail at such moments, in such an hour the duty of assuming personal responsibility towards the whole nation makes its appearance.
The Revolution succeeded because that concept had ceased to be a vital force with our people, or rather with our governments, and died down to something that was merely formal and doctrinaire.
As regards the second point, it may be said that the more profound cause of the fecklessness of the bourgeois parties must be attributed to the fact that the most active and upright section of our people had lost their lives in the war. Apart from that, the bourgeois parties, which may be considered as the only political formations that stood by the old State, were convinced that they ought to defend their principles only by intellectual ways and means, since the use of physical force was permitted only to the State. That outlook was a sign of the weakness and decadence which had been gradually developing. And it was also senseless at a period when there was a political adversary who had long ago abandoned that standpoint and, instead of this, had openly declared that he meant to attain his political ends by force whenever that became possible. When Marxism emerged in the world of bourgeois democracy, as a consequence of that democracy itself, the appeal sent out by the bourgeois democracy to fight Marxism with intellectual weapons was a piece of folly for which a terrible expiation had to be made later on. For Marxism always professed the doctrine that the use of arms was a matter which had to be judged from the standpoint of expediency and that success justified the use of arms.
This idea was proved correct during the days from November 7 to 10, 1918. The Marxists did not then bother themselves in the least about parliament or democracy, but they gave the death blow to both by turning loose their horde of criminals to shoot and raise hell.
When the Revolution was over the bourgeois parties changed the title of their firm and suddenly reappeared, the heroic leaders emerging from dark cellars or more lightsome storehouses where they had sought refuge. But, just as happens in the case of all representatives of antiquated institutions, they had not forgotten their errors or learned anything new. Their political programme was grounded in the past, even though they themselves had become reconciled to the new regime. Their aim was to secure a share in the new establishment, and so they continued the use of words as their sole weapon.
Therefore after the Revolution the bourgeois parties also capitulated to the street in a miserable fashion.
When the law for the Protection of the Republic was introduced the majority was not at first in favour of it. But, confronted with two hundred thousand Marxists demonstrating in the streets, the bourgeois 'statesmen' were so terror-stricken that they voted for the Law against their wills, for the edifying reason that otherwise they feared they might get their heads smashed by the enraged masses on leaving the Reichstag.
And so the new State developed along its own course, as if there had been no national opposition at all.
The only organizations which at that time had the strength and courage to face Marxism and its enraged masses were first of all the volunteer corps, and subsequently the organizations for self-defence, the civic guards and finally the associations formed by the demobilized soldiers of the old Army.
But the existence of these bodies did not appreciably change the course of German history; and that for the following causes:
As the so-called national parties were without influence, because they had no force which could effectively demonstrate in the street, the Leagues of Defence could not exercise any influence because they had no political idea and especially because they had no definite political aim in view.
The success which Marxism once attained was due to perfect co-operation between political purposes and ruthless force. What deprived nationalist Germany of all practical hopes of shaping German development was the lack of a determined co-operation between brute force and political aims wisely chosen.
Whatever may have been the aspirations of the 'national' parties, they had no force whatsoever to fight for these aspirations, least of all in the streets.
The Defense Leagues had force at their disposal. They were masters of the street and of the State, but they lacked political ideas and aims on behalf of which their forces might have been or could have been employed in the interests of the German nation. The cunning Jew was able in both cases, by his astute powers of persuasion, in reinforcing an already existing tendency to make this unfortunate state of affairs permanent and at the same time to drive the roots of it still deeper.
The Jew succeeded brilliantly in using his Press for the purpose of spreading abroad the idea that the defence associations were of a 'non-political' character just as in politics he was always astute enough to praise the purely intellectual character of the struggle and demand that it must always be kept on that plane
Millions of German imbeciles then repeated this folly without having the slightest suspicion that by so doing they were, for all practical purposes, disarming themselves and delivering themselves defenceless into the hands of the Jew.
But there is a natural explanation of this also. The lack of a great idea which would re-shape things anew has always meant a limitation in fighting power. The conviction of the right to employ even the most brutal weapons is always associated with an ardent faith in the necessity for a new and revolutionary transformation of the world.
A movement which does not fight for such high aims and ideals will never have recourse to extreme means.
The appearance of a new and great idea was the secret of success in the French Revolution. The Russian Revolution owes its triumph to an idea. And it was only the idea that enabled Fascism triumphantly to subject a whole nation to a process of complete renovation.
Bourgeois parties are not capable of such an achievement. And it was not the bourgeois parties alone that fixed their aim in a restoration of the past. The defence associations also did so, in so far as they concerned themselves with political aims at all. The spirit of the old war legions and Kyffauser tendencies lived in them and therewith helped politically to blunt the sharpest weapons which the German nation then possessed and allow them to rust in the hands of republican serfs. The fact that these associations were inspired by the best of intentions in so doing, and certainly acted in good faith, does not alter in the slightest degree the foolishness of the course they adopted.
In the consolidated Reichswehr Marxism gradually acquired the support of force, which it needed for its authority. As a logical consequence it proceeded to abolish those defence associations which it considered dangerous, declaring that they were now no longer necessary. Some rash leaders who defied the Marxist orders were summoned to court and sent to prison. But they all got what they had deserved.

The founding of the National Socialist German Labour Party incited a movement which was the first to fix its aim, not in a mechanical restoration of the past - as the bourgeois parties did - but in the substitution of an organic People's State for the present absurd statal mechanism.
From the first day of its foundation the new movement took its stand on the principle that its ideas had to be propagated by intellectual means but that, wherever necessary, muscular force must be employed to support this propaganda. In accordance with their conviction of the paramount importance of the new doctrine, the leaders of the new movement naturally believe that no sacrifice can be considered too great when it is a question of carrying through the purpose of the movement.
I have emphasized that in certain circumstances a movement which is meant to win over the hearts of the people must be ready to defend itself with its own forces against terrorist attempts on the part of its adversaries. It has invariably happened in the history of the world that formal State authority has failed to break a reign of terror which was inspired by a philosophy of life. It can only be conquered by a new and different philosophy of life whose representatives are quite as audacious and determined. The acknowledgment of this fact has always been very unpleasant for the bureaucrats who are the protectors of the State, but the fact remains nevertheless. The rulers of the State can guarantee tranquillity and order only in case the State embodies a philosophy which is shared in by the people as a whole; so that elements of disturbance can be treated as isolated criminals, instead of being considered as the champions of an idea which is diametrically opposed to official opinions. If such should be the case the State may employ the most violent measures for centuries long against the terror that threatens it; but in the end all these measures will prove futile, and the State will have to succumb.
The German State is intensely overrun by Marxism. In a struggle that went on for seventy years the State was not able to prevent the triumph of the Marxist idea. Even though the sentences to penal servitude and imprisonment amounted in all to thousands of years, and even though the most sanguinary methods of repression were in innumerable instances threatened against the champions of the Marxist philosophy, in the end the State was forced to capitulate almost completely. The ordinary bourgeois political leaders will deny all this, but their protests are futile.
Seeing that the State capitulated unconditionally to Marxism on November 9th, 1918, it will not suddenly rise up tomorrow as the conqueror of Marxism. On the contrary. Bourgeois simpletons sitting on office stools in the various ministries babble about the necessity of not governing against the wishes of the workers, and by the word 'workers' they mean the Marxists. By identifying the German worker with Marxism not only are they guilty of a vile falsification of the truth, but they thus try to hide their own collapse before the Marxist idea and the Marxist organization.
In view of the complete subordination of the present State to Marxism, the National Socialist Movement feels all the more bound not only to prepare the way for the triumph of its idea by appealing to the reason and understanding of the public but also to take upon itself the responsibility of organizing its own defence against the terror of the International, which is intoxicated with its own victory.
I have already described how practical experience in our young movement led us slowly to organize a system of defence for our meetings. This gradually assumed the character of a military body specially trained for the maintenance of order, and tended to develop into a service which would have its properly organized cadres.
This new formation might resemble the defence associations externally, but in reality there were no grounds of comparison between the one and the other.
As I have already said, the German defence organizations did not have any definite political ideas of their own. They really were only associations for mutual protection, and they were trained and organized accordingly, so that they were an illegal complement or auxiliary to the legal forces of the State. Their character as free corps arose only from the way in which they were constructed and the situation in which the State found itself at that time. But they certainly could not claim to be free corps on the grounds that they were associations formed freely and privately for the purpose of fighting for their own freely formed political convictions. Such they were not, despite the fact that some of their leaders and some associations as such were definitely opposed to the Republic. For before we can speak of political convictions in the higher sense we must be something more than merely convinced that the existing regime is defective. Political convictions in the higher sense mean that one has the picture of a new regime clearly before one's mind, feels that the establishment of this regime is an absolute necessity and sets himself to carry out that purpose as the highest task to which his life can be devoted.
The troops for the preservation of order, which were then formed under the National Socialist Movement, were fundamentally different from all the other defence associations by reason of the fact that our formations were not meant in any way to defend the state of things created by the Revolution, but rather that they were meant exclusively to support our struggle for the creation of a new Germany.
In the beginning this body was merely a guard to maintain order at our meetings. Its first task was limited to making it possible for us to hold our meetings, which otherwise would have been completely prevented by our opponents. These men were at that time trained merely for purposes of attack, but they were not taught to adore the big stick exclusively, as was then pretended in stupid German patriotic circles. They used the cudgel because they knew that it can be made impossible for high ideals to be put forward if the man who endeavours to propagate them can be struck down with the cudgel. As a matter of fact, it has happened in history not infrequently that some of the greatest minds have perished under the blows of the most insignificant helots. Our bodyguards did not look upon violence as an end in itself, but they protected the expositors of ideal aims and purposes against hostile coercion by violence. They also understood that there was no obligation to undertake the defence of a State which did not guarantee the defence of the nation, but that, on the contrary, they had to defend the nation against those who were threatening to destroy nation and State.
After the fight which took place at the meeting in the Munich Hofbräuhaus, where the small number of our guards who were present won everlasting fame for themselves by the heroic manner in which they stormed the adversaries; these guards were called The Storm Detachment. As the name itself indicates, they represent only a detachment of the Movement. They are one constituent element of it, just as is the Press, the propaganda, educational institutes, and other sections of the Party.
We learned how necessary was the formation of such a body, not only from our experience on the occasion of that memorable meeting but also when we sought gradually to carry the Movement beyond Munich and extend it to the other parts of Germany. Once we had begun to appear as a danger to Marxism the Marxists lost no opportunity of trying to crush beforehand all preparations for the holding of National Socialist meetings. When they did not succeed in this they tried to break up the meeting itself. It goes without saying that all the Marxist organizations, no matter of what grade or view, blindly supported the policy and activities of their representations in every case. But what is to be said of the bourgeois parties who, when they were reduced to silence by these same Marxists and in many places did not dare to send their speakers to appear before the public, yet showed themselves pleased, in a stupid and incomprehensible manner, every time we received any kind of set-back in our fight against Marxism. The bourgeois parties were happy to think that those whom they themselves could not stand up against, but had to knuckle down to, could not be broken by us. What must be said of those State officials, chiefs of police, and even cabinet ministers, who showed a scandalous lack of principle in presenting themselves externally to the public as 'national' and yet shamelessly acted as the henchmen of the Marxists in the disputes which we, National Socialists, had with the latter. What can be said of persons who debased themselves so far, for the sake of a little abject praise in the Jewish Press, that they persecuted those men to whose heroic courage and intervention, regardless of risk, they were partly indebted for not having been torn to pieces by the Red mob a few years previously and strung up to the lamp-posts?
One day these lamentable phenomena fired the late but unforgotten Prefect Pöhner – a man whose unbending straightforwardness forced him to hate all twisters and to hate them as only a man with an honest heart can hate – to say: "In all my life I wished to be first a German and then an official, and I never wanted to mix up with these creatures who, as if they were kept officials, prostituted themselves before anybody who could play lord and master for the time being."
It was a specially sad thing that gradually tens of thousands of honest and loyal servants of the State did not only come under the power of such people but were also slowly contaminated by their unprincipled morals. Moreover, these kind of men pursued honest officials with a furious hatred, degrading them and driving them from their positions, and yet passed themselves off as 'national' by the aid of their lying hypocrisy.
From officials of that kind we could expect no support, and only in very rare instances was it given. Only by building up its own defence could our movement become secure and attract that amount of public attention and general respect which is given to those who can defend themselves when attacked.
As an underlying principle in the internal development of the Storm Detachment, we came to the decision that not only should it be perfectly trained in bodily efficiency but that the men should be so instructed as to make them indomitably convinced champions of the National Socialist ideas and, finally, that they should be schooled to observe the strictest discipline. This body was to have nothing to do with the defence organizations of the bourgeois type and especially not with any secret organization.
My reasons at that time for guarding strictly against letting the Storm Detachment of the German National Socialist Labour Party appear as a defence association were as follows:
On purely practical grounds it is impossible to build up a national defence organization by means of private associations, unless the State makes an enormous contribution to it. Whoever thinks otherwise overestimates his own powers. Now it is entirely out of the question to form organizations of any military value for a definite purpose on the principle of so-called 'voluntary discipline'. Here the chief support for enforcing orders, namely, the power of inflicting punishment, is lacking. In the autumn, or rather in the spring, of 1919 it was still possible to raise 'volunteer corps', not only because most of the men who came forward at that time had been through the school of the old Army, but also because the kind of duty imposed there constrained the individual to absolute obedience at least for a definite period of time.
That spirit is entirely lacking in the volunteer defence organizations of today. The more the defence association grows, the weaker its discipline becomes and so much the less can one demand from the individual members. Thus the whole organization will more and more assume the character of the old non-political associations of war comrades and veterans.
It is impossible to carry through a voluntary training in military service for larger masses unless one is assured absolute power of command. There will always be few men who will voluntarily and spontaneously submit to that kind of obedience which is considered natural and necessary in the Army.
Moreover, a proper system of military training cannot be developed where there are such ridiculously scanty means as those at the disposal of the defence associations. The principal task of such an institution must be to impart the best and most reliable kind of instruction. Eight years have passed since the end of the War, and during that time none of our German youth, at an age when formerly they would have had to do military service, have received any systematic training at all. The aim of a defence association cannot be to enlist here and now all those who have already received a military training; for in that case it could be reckoned with mathematical accuracy when the last member would leave the association. Even the younger soldier from 1918 will no longer be fit for front-line service twenty years later, and we are approaching that state of things with a rapidity that gives cause for anxiety. Thus the defence associations must assume more and more the aspect of the old ex-service men's societies. But that cannot be the meaning and purpose of an institution which calls itself, not an association of ex-service men but a defence association, indicating by this title that it considers its task to be, not only to preserve the tradition of the old soldiers and hold them together but also to propagate the idea of national defence and be able to carry this idea into practical effect, which means the creation of a body of men who are fit and trained for military defence.
But this implies that those elements will receive a military training which up to now have received none. This is something that in practice is impossible for the defence associations. Real soldiers cannot be made by a training of one or two hours per week. In view of the enormously increasing demands which modern warfare imposes on each individual soldier today, a military service of two years is barely sufficient to transform a raw recruit into a trained soldier. At the Front during the War we all saw the fearful consequences which our young recruits had to suffer from their lack of a thorough military training. Volunteer formations which had been drilled for fifteen or twenty weeks under an iron discipline and shown unlimited self-denial proved nevertheless to be no better than cannon fodder at the Front. Only when distributed among the ranks of the old and experienced soldiers could the young recruits, who had been trained for four or six months, become useful members of a regiment. Guided by the 'old men', they adapted themselves gradually to their task.
In the light of all this, how hopeless must the attempt be to create a body of fighting troops by a so-called training of one or two hours in the week, without any definite power of command and without any considerable means. In that way perhaps one could refresh military training in old soldiers, but raw recruits cannot thus be transformed into expert soldiers.
How such a proceeding produces utterly worthless results may also be demonstrated by the fact that at the same time as these so-called volunteer defence associations, with great effort and outcry and under difficulties and lack of necessities, try to educate and train a few thousand men of goodwill (the others need not be taken into account) for purposes of national defence, the State teaches our young men democratic and pacifist ideas and thus deprives millions and millions of their national instincts, poisons their logical sense of patriotism and gradually turns them into a herd of sheep who will patiently follow any arbitrary command. Thus they render ridiculous all those attempts made by the defence associations to inculcate their ideas in the minds of the German youth.
Almost more important is the following consideration, which has always made me take up a stand against all attempts at a so-called military training on the basis of the volunteer associations.
Assuming that, in spite of all the difficulties just mentioned, a defence association were successful in training a certain number of Germans every year to be efficient soldiers, not only as regards their mental outlook but also as regards bodily efficiency and the expert handling of arms, the result must necessarily be null and void in a State whose whole tendency makes it not only look upon such a defensive formation as undesirable but even positively hate it, because such an association would completely contradict the intimate aims of the political leaders, who are the corrupters of this State.
But anyhow, such a result would be worthless under governments which have demonstrated by their own acts that they do not lay the slightest importance on the military power of the nation and are not disposed to permit an appeal to that power only in case that it were necessary for the protection of their own malignant existence.
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tanith
post Feb 20 2011, 02:21 PM
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And that is the state of affairs today. It is not ridiculous to think of training some ten thousand men in the use of arms, and carry on that training surreptitiously, when a few years previously the State, having shamefully sacrificed eight-and-a-half million highly trained soldiers, not merely did not require their services any more, but, as a mark of gratitude for their sacrifices, held them up to public contumely. Shall we train soldiers for a regime which besmirched and spat upon our most glorious soldiers, tore the medals and badges from their breasts, trampled on their flags and derided their achievements? Has the present regime taken one step towards restoring the honour of the old army and bringing those who destroyed and outraged it to answer for their deeds? Not in the least. On the contrary, the people I have just referred to may be seen enthroned in the highest positions under the State today. And yet it was said at Leipzig: "Right goes with might." Since, however, in our Republic today might is in the hands of the very men who arranged for the Revolution, and since that Revolution represents a most despicable act of high treason against the nation – yea, the vilest act in German history – there can surely be no grounds for saying that might of this character should be enhanced by the formation of a new young army. It is against all sound reason.
The importance which this State attached, after the Revolution of 1918, to the reinforcement of its position from the military point of view is clearly and unmistakably demonstrated by its attitude towards the large self-defence organizations which existed in that period. They were not unwelcome as long as they were of use for the personal protection of the miserable creatures cast up by the Revolution.
But the danger to these creatures seemed to disappear as the debasement of our people gradually increased. As the existence of the defence associations no longer implied a reinforcement of the national policy they became superfluous. Hence every effort was made to disarm them and suppress them wherever that was possible.
History records only a few examples of gratitude on the part of princes. But there is not one patriot among the new bourgeoisie who can count on the gratitude of revolutionary incendiaries and assassins, persons who have enriched themselves from the public spoil and betrayed the nation. In examining the problem as to the wisdom of forming these defence associations I have never ceased to ask: 'For whom shall I train these young men? For what purpose will they be employed when they will have to be called out?' The answer to these questions lays down at the same time the best rule for us to follow.
If the present State should one day have to call upon trained troops of this kind it would never be for the purpose of defending the interests of the nation vis-à-vis those of the stranger but rather to protect the oppressors of the nation inside the country against the danger of a general outbreak of wrath on the part of a nation which has been deceived and betrayed and whose interests have been bartered away.
For this reason it was decided that the Storm Detachment of the German National Socialist Labour Party ought not to be in the nature of a military organization. It had to be an instrument of protection and education for the National Socialist Movement and its duties should be in quite a different sphere from that of the military defence association.
And, of course, the Storm Detachment should not be in the nature of a secret organization. Secret organizations are established only for purposes that are against the law. Therewith the purpose of such an organization is limited by its very nature. Considering the loquacious propensities of the German people, it is not possible to build up any vast organization, keeping it secret at the same time and cloaking its purpose. Every attempt of that kind is destined to turn out absolutely futile. It is not merely that our police officials today have at their disposal a staff of eavesdroppers and other such rabble who are ready to play traitor, like Judas, for thirty pieces of silver and will betray whatever secrets they can discover and will invent what they would like to reveal. In order to forestall such eventualities, it is never possible to bind one's own followers to the silence that is necessary. Only small groups can become really secret societies, and that only after long years of filtration. But the very smallness of such groups would deprive them of all value for the National Socialist Movement. What we needed then and need now is not one or two hundred dare-devil conspirators but a hundred thousand devoted champions of our philosophy of life. The work must not be done through secret conventicles but through formidable mass demonstrations in public. Dagger and pistol and poison-vial cannot clear the way for the progress of the movement. That can be done only by winning over the man in the street. We must overthrow Marxism, so that for the future National Socialism will be master of the street, just as it will one day become master of the State.
There is another danger connected with secret societies. It lies in the fact that their members often completely misunderstand the greatness of the task in hand and are apt to believe that a favourable destiny can be assured for the nation all at once by means of a single murder. Such a belief may find historical justification by appealing to cases where a nation had been suffering under the tyranny of some oppressor who at the same time was a man of genius and whose extraordinary personality guaranteed the internal solidity of his position and enabled him to maintain his fearful oppression. In such cases a man may suddenly arise from the ranks of the people who is ready to sacrifice himself and plunge the deadly steel into the heart of the hated individual. In order to look upon such a deed as abhorrent one must have the republican mentality of that petty canaille who are conscious of their own crime. But the greatest champion of liberty that the German people have ever had has glorified such a deed in William Tell.
During 1919 and 1920 there was danger that the members of secret organizations, under the influence of great historical examples and overcome by the immensity of the nation's misfortunes, might attempt to wreak vengeance on the destroyers of their country, under the belief that this would end the miseries of the people. All such attempts were sheer folly, for the reason that the Marxist triumph was not due to the superior genius of one remarkable person but rather to immeasurable incompetence and cowardly shirking on the part of the bourgeoisie. The hardest criticism that can be uttered against our bourgeoisie is simply to state the fact that it submitted to the Revolution, even though the Revolution did not produce one single man of eminent worth. One can always understand how it was possible to capitulate before a Robespierre, a Danton, or a Marat; but it was utterly scandalous to go down on all fours before the withered Scheidemann, the obese Herr Erzberger, Frederick Ebert, and the innumerable other political pigmies of the Revolution. There was not a single man of parts in whom one could see the revolutionary man of genius. Therein lay the country's misfortune; for they were only revolutionary bugs, Spartacists wholesale and retail. To suppress one of them would be an act of no consequence. The only result would be that another pair of bloodsuckers, equally fat and thirsty, would be ready to take his place.
During those years we had to take up a determined stand against an idea which owed its origin and foundation to historical episodes that were really great, but to which our own despicable epoch did not bear the slightest similarity.
The same reply may be given when there is question of putting somebody 'on the spot' who has acted as a traitor to his country. It would be ridiculous and illogical to shoot a poor wretch who had betrayed the position of a howitzer to the enemy while the highest positions of the government are occupied by a rabble who bartered away a whole empire, who have on their consciences the deaths of two million men who were sacrificed in vain, fellows who were responsible for the millions maimed in the war and who make a thriving business out of the republican regime without allowing their souls to be disturbed in any way. It would be absurd to do away with small traitors in a State whose government has absolved the great traitors from all punishment. For it might easily happen that one day an honest idealist, who, out of love for his country, had removed from circulation some miserable informer that had given information about secret stores of arms might now be called to answer for his act before the chief traitors of the country. And there is still an important question: Shall some small traitorous creature be suppressed by another small traitor, or by an idealist? In the former case the result would be doubtful and the deed would almost surely be revealed later on. In the second case a petty rascal is put out of the way and the life of an idealist who may be irreplaceable is in jeopardy.
For myself, I believe that small thieves should not be hanged while big thieves are allowed to go free. One day a national tribunal will have to judge and sentence some tens of thousands of organizers who were responsible for the criminal November betrayal and all the consequences that followed on it. Such an example will teach the necessary lesson, once and for ever, to those paltry traitors who revealed to the enemy the places where arms were hidden.
On the grounds of these considerations I steadfastly forbade all participation in secret societies, and I took care that the Storm Detachment should not assume such a character. During those years I kept the National Socialist Movement away from those experiments which were being undertaken by young Germans who for the most part were inspired with a sublime idealism but who became the victims of their own deeds, because they could not ameliorate the lot of their fatherland to the slightest degree.
If then the Storm Detachment must not be either a military defence organization or a secret society, the following conclusions must result:
1. Its training must not be organized from the military standpoint but from the standpoint of what is most practical for party purposes. Seeing that its members must undergo a good physical training, the place of chief importance must not be given to military drill but rather to the practice of sports. I have always considered boxing and ju-jitsu more important than some kind of bad, because mediocre, training in rifle-shooting. If the German nation were presented with a body of young men who had been perfectly trained in athletic sports, who were imbued with an ardent love for their country and a readiness to take the initiative in a fight, then the national State could make an army out of that body within less than two years if it were necessary, provided the cadres already existed. In the actual state of affairs only the Reichswehr could furnish the cadres and not a defence organization that was neither one thing nor the other. Bodily efficiency would develop in the individual a conviction of his superiority and would give him that confidence which is always based only on the consciousness of one's own powers. They must also develop that athletic agility which can be employed as a defensive weapon in the service of the Movement.
2. In order to safeguard the Storm Detachment against any tendency towards secrecy, not only must the uniform be such that it can immediately be recognized by everybody, but the large number of its effectives show the direction in which the Movement is going and which must be known to the whole public. The members of the Storm Detachment must not hold secret gatherings but must march in the open and thus, by their actions, put an end to all legends about a secret organization. In order to keep them away from all temptations towards finding an outlet for their activities in small conspiracies, from the very beginning we had to inculcate in their minds the great idea of the Movement and educate them so thoroughly to the task of defending this idea that their horizon became enlarged and that the individual no longer considered it his mission to remove from circulation some rascal or other, whether big or small, but to devote himself entirely to the task of bringing about the establishment of a new National Socialist People's State. In this way the struggle against the present State was placed on a higher plane than that of petty revenge and small conspiracies. It was elevated to the level of a spiritual struggle on behalf of a philosophical war, for the destruction of Marxism in all its shapes and forms.
3. The form of organization adopted for the Storm Detachment, as well as its uniform and equipment, had to follow different models from those of the old Army. They had to be specially suited to the requirements of the task that was assigned to the Storm Detachment.
These were the ideas I followed in 1920 and 1921. I endeavoured to instil them gradually into the members of the young organization. And the result was that by the midsummer of 1922 we had a goodly number of formations which consisted of a hundred men each. By the late autumn of that year these formations received their distinctive uniforms. There were three events which turned out to be of supreme importance for the subsequent development of the Storm Detachment.
1. The great mass demonstration against the Law for the Protection of the Republic. This demonstration was held in the late summer of 1922 on the Königs-platz in Munich, by all the patriotic societies. The National Socialist Movement also participated in it. The march-past of our party, in serried ranks, was led by six Munich companies of a hundred men each, followed by the political sections of the Party. Two bands marched with us and about fifteen flags were carried. When the National Socialists arrived at the great square it was already half full, but no flag was flying. Our entry aroused unbounded enthusiasm. I myself had the honour of being one of the speakers who addressed that mass of about sixty thousand people.
The demonstration was an overwhelming success; especially because it was proved for the first time that nationalist Munich could march on the streets, in spite of all threats from the Reds. Members of the organization for the defence of the Red Republic endeavoured to hinder the marching columns by their terrorist activities, but they were scattered by the companies of the Storm Detachment within a few minutes and sent off with bleeding skulls. The National Socialist Movement had then shown for the first time that in future it was determined to exercise the right to march on the streets and thus take this monopoly away from the international traitors and enemies of the country.
The result of that day was an incontestable proof that our ideas for the creation of the Storm Detachment were right, both from the psychological viewpoint and as to the manner in which this body was organized.
On the basis of this success the enlistment progressed so rapidly that within a few weeks the number of Munich companies of a hundred men each became doubled.
2. The expedition to Coburg in October 1922.
Certain People's Societies had decided to hold a German Day at Coburg. I was invited to take part, with the intimation that they wished me to bring a following along. This invitation, which I received at eleven o'clock in the morning, arrived just in time. Within an hour the arrangements for our participation in the German Congress were ready. I picked eight hundred men of the Storm Detachment to accompany me. These were divided into about fourteen companies and had to be brought by special train from Munich to Coburg, which had just voted by plebiscite to be annexed to Bavaria. Corresponding orders were given to other groups of the National Socialist Storm Detachment which had meanwhile been formed in various other localities.
This was the first time that such a special train ran in Germany. At all the places where the new members of the Storm Detachment joined us our train caused a sensation. Many of the people had never seen our flag. And it made a very great impression.
As we arrived at the station in Coburg we were received by a deputation of the organizing committee of the German Day. They announced that it had been 'arranged' at the orders of local trades unions – that is to say, the Independent and Communist Parties – that we should not enter the town with our flags unfurled and our band playing (we had a band consisting of forty-two musicians with us) and that we should not march with closed ranks.
I immediately rejected these unmilitary conditions and did not fail to declare before the gentlemen who had arranged this 'day' how astonished I was at the idea of their negotiating with such people and coming to an agreement with them. Then I announced that the Storm Troops would immediately march into the town in company formation, with our flags flying and the band playing.
And that is what happened.
As we came out into the station yard we were met by a growling and yelling mob of several thousand, that shouted at us: 'Assassins', 'Bandits', 'Robbers', 'Criminals'. These were the choice names which these exemplary founders of the German Republic showered on us. The young Storm Detachment gave a model example of order. The companies fell into formation on the square in front of the station and at first took no notice of the insults hurled at them by the mob. The police were anxious. They did not pilot us to the quarters assigned to us on the outskirts of Coburg, a city quite unknown to us, but to the Hofbräuhaus Keller in the centre of the town. Right and left of our march the tumult raised by the accompanying mob steadily increased. Scarcely had the last company entered the courtyard of the Hofbräuhaus when the huge mass made a rush to get in after them, shouting madly. In order to prevent this, the police closed the gates. Seeing the position was untenable I called the Storm Detachment to attention and then asked the police to open the gates immediately. After a good deal of hesitation, they consented.
We now marched back along the same route as we had come, in the direction of our quarters, and there we had to make a stand against the crowd. As their cries and yells all along the route had failed to disturb the equanimity of our companies, the champions of true Socialism, Equality, and Fraternity now took to throwing stones. That brought our patience to an end. For ten minutes long, blows fell right and left, like a devastating shower of hail. Fifteen minutes later there were no more Reds to be seen in the street.
The collisions which took place when the night came on were more serious. Patrols of the Storm Detachment had discovered National Socialists who had been attacked singly and were in an atrocious state. Thereupon we made short work of the opponents. By the following morning the Red terror, under which Coburg had been suffering for years, was definitely smashed.
Adopting the typically Marxist and Jewish method of spreading falsehoods, leaflets were distributed by hand on the streets, bearing the caption: "Comrades and Comradesses of the International Proletariat." These leaflets were meant to arouse the wrath of the populace. Twisting the facts completely around, they declared that our 'bands of assasins' had commenced 'a war of extermination against the peaceful workers of Coburg'. At half-past one that day there was to be a 'great popular demonstration', at which it was hoped that the workers of the whole district would turn up. I was determined finally to crush this Red terror and so I summoned the Storm Detachment to meet at midday. Their number had now increased to 1,500. I decided to march with these men to the Coburg Festival and to cross the big square where the Red demonstration was to take place. I wanted to see if they would attempt to assault us again. When we entered the square we found that instead of the ten thousand that had been advertised, there were only a few hundred people present. As we approached they remained silent for the most part, and some ran away. Only at certain points along the route some bodies of Reds, who had arrived from outside the city and had not yet come to know us, attempted to start a row. But a few fisticuffs put them to flight. And now one could see how the population, which had for such a long time been so wretchedly intimidated, slowly woke up and recovered their courage. They welcomed us openly, and in the evening, on our return march, spontaneous shouts of jubilation broke out at several points along the route.
At the station the railway employees informed us all of a sudden that our train would not move. Thereupon I had some of the ringleaders told that if this were the case I would have all the Red Party heroes arrested that fell into our hands, that we would drive the train ourselves, but that we would take away with us, in the locomotive and tender and in some of the carriages, a few dozen members of this brotherhood of international solidarity. I did not omit to let those gentry know that if we had to conduct the train the journey would undoubtedly be a very risky adventure and that we might all break our necks. It would be a consolation, however, to know that we should not go to Eternity alone, but in equality and fraternity with the Red gentry.
Thereupon the train departed punctually and we arrived next morning in Munich safe and sound.
Thus at Coburg, for the first time since 1914, the equality of all citizens before the law was re-established. For even if some coxcomb of a higher official should assert today that the State protects the lives of its citizens, at least in those days it was not so. For at that time the citizens had to defend themselves against the representatives of the present State.
At first it was not possible fully to estimate the importance of the consequences which resulted from that day. The victorious Storm Troops had their confidence in themselves considerably reinforced and also their faith in the sagacity of their leaders. Our contemporaries began to pay us special attention and for the first time many recognized the National Socialist Movement as an organization that in all probability was destined to bring the Marxist folly to a deserving end.
Only the democrats lamented the fact that we had not the complaisance to allow our skulls to be cracked and that we had dared, in a democratic Republic, to hit back with fists and sticks at a brutal assault, rather than with pacifist chants.
Generally speaking, the bourgeois Press was partly distressed and partly vulgar, as always. Only a few decent newspapers expressed their satisfaction that at least in one locality the Marxist street bullies had been effectively dealt with.
And in Coburg itself at least a part of the Marxist workers who must be looked upon as misled, learned from the blows of National Socialist fists that these workers were also fighting for ideals, because experience teaches that the human being fights only for something in which he believes and which he loves.
The Storm Detachment itself benefited most from the Coburg events. It grew so quickly in numbers that at the Party Congress in January 1923 six thousand men participated in the ceremony of consecrating the flags and the first companies were fully clad in their new uniform.
Our experience in Coburg proved how essential it is to introduce one distinctive uniform for the Storm Detachment, not only for the purpose of strengthening the esprit de corps but also to avoid confusion and the danger of not recognizing the opponent in a squabble. Up to that time they had merely worn the armlet, but now the tunic and the well-known cap were added.
But the Coburg experience had also another important result. We now determined to break the Red Terror in all those localities where for many years it had prevented men of other views from holding their meetings. We were determined to restore the right of free assembly. From that time onwards we brought our battalions together in such places and little by little the red citadels of Bavaria, one after another, fell before the National Socialist propaganda. The Storm Troops became more and more adept at their job. They increasingly lost all semblance of an aimless and lifeless defence movement and came out into the light as an active militant organization, fighting for the establishment of a new German State.
This logical development continued until March 1923. Then an event occurred which made me divert the Movement from the course hitherto followed and introduce some changes in its outer formation.
In the first months of 1923 the French occupied the Ruhr district. The consequence of this was of great importance in the development of the Storm Detachment.
It is not yet possible, nor would it be in the interest of the nation, to write or speak openly and freely on the subject. I shall speak of it only as far as the matter has been dealt with in public discussions and thus brought to the knowledge of everybody.
The occupation of the Ruhr district, which did not come as a surprise to us, gave grounds for hoping that Germany would at last abandon its cowardly policy of submission and therewith give the defensive associations a definite task to fulfil. The Storm Detachment also, which now numbered several thousand of robust and vigorous young men, should not be excluded from this national service. During the spring and summer of 1923 it was transformed into a fighting military organization. It is to this reorganization that we must in great part attribute the later developments that took place during 1923, in so far as it affected our Movement.
Elsewhere I shall deal in broad outline with the development of events in 1923. Here I wish only to state that the transformation of the Storm Detachment at that time must have been detrimental to the interests of the Movement if the conditions that had motivated the change were not to be carried into effect, namely, the adoption of a policy of active resistance against France.
The events which took place at the close of 1923, terrible as they may appear at first sight, were almost a necessity if looked at from a higher standpoint; because, in view of the attitude taken by the Government of the German Reich, conversion of the Storm Troops into a military force would be meaningless and thus a transformation which would also be harmful to the Movement was ended at one stroke. At the same time it was made possible for us to reconstruct at the point where we had been diverted from the proper course.
In the year 1925 the German National Socialist Labour Party was re-founded and had to organize and train its Storm Detachment once again according to the principles I have laid down. It must return to the original idea and once more it must consider its most essential task to function as the instrument of defence and reinforcement in the spiritual struggle to establish the ideals of the Movement.
The Storm Detachment must not be allowed to sink to the level of something in the nature of a defence organization or a secret society. Steps must be taken rather to make it a vanguard of 100,000 men in the struggle for the National Socialist ideal which is based on the profound principle of a People's State.

Chapter X: Federalism as a Mask

In the winter of 1919, and still more in the spring and summer of 1920, the young Party felt bound to take up a definite stand on a question which already had become quite serious during the War. In the first volume of this book I have briefly recorded certain facts which I had personally witnessed and which foreboded the break-up of Germany. In describing these facts I made reference to the special nature of the propaganda which was directed by the English as well as the French towards reopening the breach that had existed between North and South in Germany. In the spring of 1915 there appeared the first of a series of leaflets which was systematically followed up and the aim of which was to arouse feeling against Prussia as being solely responsible for the war. Up to 1916 this system had been developed and perfected in a cunning and shameless manner. Appealing to the basest of human instincts, this propaganda endeavoured to arouse the wrath of the South Germans against the North Germans and after a short time it bore fruit. Persons who were then in high positions under the Government and in the Army, especially those attached to headquarters in the Bavarian Army, merited the just reproof of having blindly neglected their duty and failed to take the necessary steps to counter such propaganda. But nothing was done. On the contrary, in some quarters it did not appear to be quite unwelcome and probably they were short-sighted enough to think that such propaganda might help along the development of unification in Germany but even that it might automatically bring about consolidation of the federative forces. Scarcely ever in history was such a wicked neglect more wickedly avenged. The weakening of Prussia, which they believed would result from this propaganda, affected the whole of Germany. It resulted in hastening the collapse which not only wrecked Germany as a whole but even more particularly the federal states.
In that town where the artificially created hatred against Prussia raged most violently the revolt against the reigning House was the beginning of the Revolution.
It would be a mistake to think that the enemy propaganda was exclusively responsible for creating an anti-Prussian feeling and that there were no reasons which might excuse the people for having listened to this propaganda. The incredible fashion in which the national economic interests were organized during the War, the absolutely crazy system of centralization which made the whole Reich its ward and exploited the Reich, furnished the principal grounds for the growth of that anti-Prussian feeling. The average citizen looked upon the companies for the placing of war contracts, all of which had their headquarters in Berlin, as identical with Berlin and Berlin itself as identical with Prussia. The average citizen did not know that the organization of these robber companies, which were called War Companies, was not in the hands of Berlin or Prussia and not even in German hands at all. People recognized only the gross irregularities and the continual encroachments of that hated institution in the Metropolis of the Reich and directed their anger towards Berlin and Prussia, all the more because in certain quarters (the Bavarian Government) nothing was done to correct this attitude, but it was even welcomed with silent rubbing of hands.
The Jew was far too shrewd not to understand that the infamous campaign which he had organized, under the cloak of War Companies, for plundering the German nation would and must eventually arouse opposition. As long as that opposition did not spring directly at his own throat he had no reason to be afraid. Hence he decided that the best way of forestalling an outbreak on the part of the enraged and desperate masses would be to inflame their wrath and at the same time give it another outlet.
Let Bavaria quarrel as much as it liked with Prussia and Prussia with Bavaria. The more, the merrier. This bitter strife between the two states assured peace to the Jew. Thus public attention was completely diverted from the international maggot in the body of the nation; indeed, he seemed to have been forgotten. Then when there came a danger that level-headed people, of whom there are many to be found also in Bavaria, would advise a little more reserve and a more judicious evaluation of things, thus calming the rage against Prussia, all the Jew had to do in Berlin was to stage a new provocation and await results. Every time that was done all those who had profiteered out of the conflict between North and South filled their lungs and again fanned the flame of indignation until it became a blaze.
It was a shrewd and expert manoeuvre on the part of the Jew, to set the different branches of the German people quarrelling with one another, so that their attention would be turned away from himself and he could plunder them all the more completely.
Then came the Revolution.
Until the year 1918, or rather until the November of that year, the average German citizen, particularly the less educated lower middle-class and the workers, did not rightly understand what was happening and did not realize what must be the inevitable consequences, especially for Bavaria, of this internecine strife between the branches of the German people; but at least those sections which called themselves 'National' ought to have clearly perceived these consequences on the day that the Revolution broke out. For the moment the coup d'état had succeeded, the leader and organizer of the Revolution in Bavaria put himself forward as the defender of 'Bavarian' interests. The international Jew, Kurt Eisner, began to play off Bavaria against Prussia. This Oriental was just about the last person in the world that could be pointed to as the logical defender of Bavarian interests. In his trade as newspaper reporter he had wandered from place to place all over Germany and to him it was a matter of sheer indifference whether Bavaria or any other particular part of God's whole world continued to exist.
In deliberately giving the revolutionary rising in Bavaria the character of an offensive against Prussia, Kurt Eisner was not acting in the slightest degree from the standpoint of Bavarian interests, but merely as the commissioned representative of Jewry. He exploited existing instincts and antipathies in Bavaria as a means which would help to make the dismemberment of Germany all the more easy. When once dismembered, the Reich would fall an easy prey to Bolshevism.
The tactics employed by him were continued for a time after his death. The Marxists, who had always derided and exploited the individual German states and their princes, now suddenly appealed, as an 'Independent Party' to those sentiments and instincts which had their strongest roots in the families of the reigning princes and the individual states.
The fight waged by the Bavarian Soviet Republic against the military contingents that were sent to free Bavaria from its grasp was represented by the Marxist propagandists as first of all the 'Struggle of the Bavarian Worker' against 'Prussian Militarism.' This explains why it was that the suppression of the Soviet Republic in Munich did not have the same effect there as in the other German districts. Instead of recalling the masses to a sense of reason, it led to increased bitterness and anger against Prussia.
The art of the Bolshevik agitators, in representing the suppression of the Bavarian Soviet Republic as a victory of 'Prussian Militarism' over the 'Anti-militarists' and 'Anti-Prussian' people of Bavaria, bore rich fruit. Whereas on the occasion of the elections to the Bavarian Legislative Diet, Kurt Eisner did not have ten thousand followers in Munich and the Communist party less than three thousand, after the fall of the Bavarian Republic the votes given to the two parties together amounted to nearly one hundred thousand.
It was then that I personally began to combat that crazy incitement of some branches of the German people against other branches.
I believe that never in my life did I undertake a more unpopular task than I did when I took my stand against the anti-Prussian incitement. During the Soviet regime in Munich great public meetings were held at which hatred against the rest of Germany, but particularly against Prussia, was roused up to such a pitch that a North German would have risked his life in attending one of those meetings. These meetings often ended in wild shouts: "Away from Prussia", "Down with the Prussians", "War against Prussia", and so on. This feeling was openly expressed in the Reichstag by a particularly brilliant defender of Bavarian sovereign rights when he said: "Rather die as a Bavarian than rot as a Prussian".
One should have attended some of the meetings held at that time in order to understand what it meant for one when, for the first time and surrounded by only a handful of friends, I raised my voice against this folly at a meeting held in the Munich Löwenbräu Keller. Some of my War comrades stood by me then. And it is easy to imagine how we felt when that raging crowd, which had lost all control of its reason, roared at us and threatened to kill us. During the time that we were fighting for the country the same crowd were for the most part safely ensconced in the rear positions or were peacefully circulating at home as deserters and shirkers. It is true that that scene turned out to be of advantage to me. My small band of comrades felt for the first time absolutely united with me and readily swore to stick by me through life and death.
These conflicts, which were constantly repeated in 1919, seemed to become more violent soon after the beginning of 1920. There were meetings – I remember especially one in the Wagner Hall in the Sonnenstrasse in Munich – during the course of which my group, now grown much larger, had to defend themselves against assaults of the most violent character. It happened more than once that dozens of my followers were mishandled, thrown to the floor and stamped upon by the attackers and were finally thrown out of the hall more dead than alive.
The struggle which I had undertaken, first by myself alone and afterwards with the support of my war comrades, was now continued by the young movement, I might say almost as a sacred mission.
I am proud of being able to say today that we – depending almost exclusively on our followers in Bavaria – were responsible for putting an end, slowly but surely, to the coalition of folly and treason. I say folly and treason because, although convinced that the masses who joined in it meant well but were stupid, I cannot attribute such simplicity as an extenuating circumstance in the case of the organizers and their abetters. I then looked upon them,and still look upon them today, as traitors in the payment of France. In one case, that of Dorten, history has already pronounced its judgment.
The situation became specially dangerous at that time by reason of the fact that they were very astute in their ability to cloak their real tendencies, by insisting primarily on their federative intentions and claiming that those were the sole motives of the agitation. Of course it is quite obvious that the agitation against Prussia had nothing to do with federalism. Surely 'Federal Activities' is not the phrase with which to describe an effort to dissolve and dismember another federal state. For an honest federalist, for whom the formula used by Bismarck to define his idea of the Reich is not a counterfeit phrase, could not in the same breath express the desire to cut off portions of the Prussian State, which was created or at least completed by Bismarck. Nor could he publicly support such a separatist attempt.
What an outcry would be raised in Munich if some prussian conservative party declared itself in favour of detaching Franconia from Bavaria or took public action in demanding and promoting such a separatist policy. Nevertheless, one can only have sympathy for all those real and honest federalists who did not see through this infamous swindle, for they were its principal victims. By distorting the federalist idea in such a way its own champions prepared its grave. One cannot make propaganda for a federalist configuration of the Reich by debasing and abusing and besmirching the essential element of such a political structure, namely Prussia, and thus making such a Confederation impossible, if it ever had been possible. It is all the more incredible by reason of the fact that the fight carried on by those so-called federalists was directed against that section of the Prussian people which was the last that could be looked upon as connected with the November democracy. For the abuse and attacks of these so-called federalists were not levelled against the fathers of the Weimar Constitution – the majority of whom were South Germans or Jews – but against those who represented the old conservative Prussia, which was the antipodes of the Weimar Constitution. The fact that the directors of this campaign were careful not to touch the Jews is not to be wondered at and perhaps gives the key to the whole riddle.
Before the Revolution the Jew was successful in distracting attention from himself and his War Companies by inciting the masses, and especially the Bavarians, against Prussia. Similarly he felt obliged, after the Revolution, to find some way of camouflaging his new plunder campaign which was nine or ten times greater. And again he succeeded, in this case by provoking the so-called 'national' elements against one another: the conservative Bavarians against the Prussians, who were just as conservative. He acted again with extreme cunning, inasmuch as he who held the reins of Prussia's destiny in his hands provoked such crude and tactless aggressions that again and again they set the blood boiling in those who were being continually duped. Never against the Jew, however, but always the German against his own brother. The Bavarian did not see the Berlin of four million industrious and efficient working people, but only the lazy and decadent Berlin which is to be found in the worst quarters of the West End. And his antipathy was not directed against this West End of Berlin but against the 'Prussian' city.
In many cases it tempted one to despair.
The ability which the Jew has displayed in turning public attention away from himself and giving it another direction may be studied also in what is happening today.
In 1918 there was nothing like an organized anti-Semitic feeling. I still remember the difficulties we encountered the moment we mentioned the Jew. We were either confronted with dumb-struck faces or else a lively and hefty antagonism. The efforts we made at the time to point out the real enemy to the public seemed to be doomed to failure. But then things began to change for the better, though only very slowly. The 'League for Defence and Offence' was defectively organized but at least it had the great merit of opening up the Jewish question once again. In the winter of 1918–1919 a kind of anti-semitism began slowly to take root. Later on the National Socialist Movement presented the Jewish problem in a new light. Taking the question beyond the restricted circles of the upper classes and small bourgeoisie we succeeded in transforming it into the driving motive of a great popular movement. But the moment we were successful in placing this problem before the German people in the light of an idea that would unite them in one struggle the Jew reacted. He resorted to his old tactics. With amazing alacrity he hurled the torch of discord into the patriotic movement and opened a rift there. In bringing forward the ultramontane question and in the mutual quarrels that it gave rise to between Catholicism and Protestantism lay the sole possibility, as conditions then were, of occupying public attention with other problems and thus ward off the attack which had been concentrated against Jewry. The men who dragged our people into this controversy can never make amends for the crime they then committed against the nation. Anyhow, the Jew has attained the ends he desired. Catholics and Protestants are fighting with one another to their hearts' content, while the enemy of Aryan humanity and all Christendom is laughing up his sleeve.
Once it was possible to occupy the attention of the public for several years with the struggle between federalism and unification, wearing out their energies in this mutual friction while the Jew trafficked in the freedom of the nation and sold our country to the masters of international high finance. So in our day he has succeeded again, this time by raising ructions between the two German religious denominations while the foundations on which both rest are being eaten away and destroyed through the poison injected by the international and cosmopolitan Jew.
Look at the ravages from which our people are suffering daily as a result of being contaminated with Jewish blood. Bear in mind the fact that this poisonous contamination can be eliminated from the national body only after centuries, or perhaps never. Think further of how the process of racial decomposition is debasing and in some cases even destroying the fundamental Aryan qualities of our German people, so that our cultural creativeness as a nation is gradually becoming impotent and we are running the danger, at least in our great cities, of falling to the level where Southern Italy is today. This pestilential adulteration of the blood, of which hundreds of thousands of our people take no account, is being systematically practised by the Jew today. Systematically these negroid parasites in our national body corrupt our innocent fair-haired girls and thus destroy something which can no longer be replaced in this world.
The two Christian denominations look on with indifference at the profanation and destruction of a noble and unique creature who was given to the world as a gift of God's grace. For the future of the world, however, it does not matter which of the two triumphs over the other, the Catholic or the Protestant. But it does matter whether Aryan humanity survives or perishes. And yet the two Christian denominations are not contending against the destroyer of Aryan humanity but are trying to destroy one another. Everybody who has the right kind of feeling for his country is solemnly bound, each within his own denomination, to see to it that he is not constantly talking about the Will of God merely from the lips but that in actual fact he fulfils the Will of God and does not allow God's handiwork to be debased. For it was by the Will of God that men were made of a certain bodily shape, were given their natures and their faculties. Whoever destroys His work wages war against God's Creation and God's Will. Therefore everyone should endeavour, each in his own denomination of course, and should consider it as his first and most solemn duty to hinder any and everyone whose conduct tends, either by word or deed, to go outside his own religious body and pick a quarrel with those of another denomination. For, in view of the religious schism that exists in Germany, to attack the essential characteristics of one denomination must necessarily lead to a war of extermination between the two Christian denominations. Here there can be no comparison between our position and that of France, or Spain or Italy. In those three countries one may, for instance, make propaganda for the side that is fighting against ultramontanism without thereby incurring the danger of a national rift among the French, or Spanish or Italian people. In Germany, however, that cannot be so, for here the Protestants would also take part in such propaganda. And thus the defence which elsewhere only Catholics organize against clerical aggression in political matters would assume with us the character of a Protestant attack against Catholicism. What may be tolerated by the faithful in one denomination even when it seems unjust to them, will at once be indignantly rejected and opposed on a priori grounds if it should come from the militant leaders of another denomination. This is so true that even men who would be ready and willing to fight for the removal of manifest grievances within their own religious denomination will drop their own fight and turn their activities against the outsider the moment the abolition of such grievances is counselled or demanded by one who is not of the same faith. They consider it unjustified and inadmissible and incorrect for outsiders to meddle in matters which do not affect them at all. Such attempts are not excused even when they are inspired by a feeling for the supreme interests of the national community; because even in our day religious feelings still have deeper roots than all feeling for political and national expediency. That cannot be changed by setting one denomination against another in bitter conflict. It can be changed only if, through a spirit of mutual tolerance, the nation can be assured of a future the greatness of which will gradually operate as a conciliating factor in the sphere of religion also. I have no hesitation in saying that in those men who seek today to embroil the patriotic movement in religious quarrels I see worse enemies of my country than the international communists are. For the National Socialist Movement has set itself to the task of converting those communists. But anyone who goes outside the ranks of his own Movement and tends to turn it away from the fulfilment of its mission is acting in a manner that deserves the severest condemnation. He is acting as a champion of Jewish interests, whether consciously or unconsciously does not matter. For it is in the interests of the Jews today that the energies of the patriotic movement should be squandered in a religious conflict, because it is beginning to be dangerous for the Jews. I have purposely used the phrase about squandering the energies of the Movement, because nobody but some person who is entirely ignorant of history could imagine that this movement can solve a question which the greatest statesmen have tried for centuries to solve, and tried in vain.
Anyhow the facts speak for themselves. The men who suddenly discovered, in 1924, that the highest mission of the patriotic movement was to fight ultramontanism, have not succeeded in smashing ultramontanism, but they succeeded in splitting the patriotic movement. I have to guard against the possibility of some immature brain arising in the patriotic movement which thinks that it can do what even a Bismarck failed to do. It will be always one of the first duties of those who are directing the National Socialist Movement to oppose unconditionally any attempt to place the National Socialist Movement at the service of such a conflict. And anybody who conducts a propaganda with that end in view must be expelled forthwith from its ranks.
As a matter of fact we succeeded until the autumn of 1923 in keeping our movement away from such controversies. The most devoted Protestant could stand side by side with the most devoted Catholic in our ranks without having his conscience disturbed in the slightest as far as concerned his religious convictions. The bitter struggle which both waged in common against the wrecker of Aryan humanity taught them natural respect and esteem. And it was just in those years that our movement had to engage in a bitter strife with the Centre Party not for religious ends but for national, racial, political and economic ends. The success we then achieved showed that we were right, but it does not speak today in favour of those who thought they knew better.
In recent years things have gone so far that patriotic circles, in god-forsaken blindness of their religious strife, could not recognize the folly of their conduct even from the fact that atheist Marxist newspapers advocated the cause of one religious denomination or the other, according as it suited Marxist interests, so as to create confusion through slogans and declarations which were often immeasurably stupid, now molesting the one party and again the other, and thus poking the fire to keep the blaze at its highest.
But in the case of a people like the Germans, whose history has so often shown them capable of fighting for phantoms to the point of complete exhaustion, every war-cry is a mortal danger. By these slogans our people have often been drawn away from the real problems of their existence. While we were exhausting our energies in religious wars the others were acquiring their share of the world. And while the patriotic movement is debating with itself whether the ultramontane danger be greater than the Jewish, or vice versa, the Jew is destroying the racial basis of our existence and thereby annihilating our people. As far as regards that kind of 'patriotic' warrior, on behalf of the National Socialist Movement and therefore of the German people I pray with all my heart: "Lord, preserve us from such friends, and then we can easily deal with our enemies."
The controversy over federation and unification, so cunningly propagandized by the Jews in 1919-1920 and onwards, forced National Socialism, which repudiated the quarrel, to take up a definite stand in relation to the essential problem concerned in it. Ought Germany to be a confederacy or a military State? What is the practical significance of these terms? To me it seems that the second question is more important than the first, because it is fundamental to the understanding of the whole problem and also because the answer to it may help to clear up confusion and therewith have a conciliating effect.
What is a Confederacy?
By a Confederacy we mean a union of sovereign states which of their own free will and in virtue of their sovereignty come together and create a collective unit, ceding to that unit as much of their own sovereign rights as will render the existence of the union possible and will guarantee it.
But the theoretical formula is not wholly put into practice by any confederacy that exists today. And least of all by the American Union, where it is impossible to speak of original sovereignty in regard to the majority of the states. Many of them were not included in the federal complex until long after it had been established. The states that make up the American Union are mostly in the nature of territories, more or less, formed for technical administrative purposes, their boundaries having in many cases been fixed in the mapping office. Originally these states did not and could not possess sovereign rights of their own. Because it was the Union that created most of the so-called states. Therefore the sovereign rights, often very comprehensive, which were left, or rather granted, to the various territories correspond not only to the whole character of the Confederation but also to its vast space, which is equivalent to the size of a Continent. Consequently, in speaking of the United States of America one must not consider them as sovereign states but as enjoying rights or, better perhaps, autarchic powers, granted to them and guaranteed by the Constitution.
Nor does our definition adequately express the condition of affairs in Germany. It is true that in Germany the individual states existed as states before the Reich and that the Reich was formed from them. The Reich, however, was not formed by the voluntary and equal co-operation of the individual states, but rather because the state of Prussia gradually acquired a position of hegemony over the others. The difference in the territorial area alone between the German states prevents any comparison with the American Union. The great difference in territorial area between the very small German states that then existed and the larger, or even still more the largest, demonstrates the inequality of their achievements and shows that they could not take an equal part in founding and shaping the federal Empire. In the case of most of these individual states it cannot be maintained that they ever enjoyed real sovereignty; and the term 'State Sovereignty' was really nothing more than an administrative formula which had no inner meaning. As a matter of fact, not only developments in the past but also in our own time wiped out several of these so-called 'Sovereign States' and thus proved in the most definite way how frail these 'sovereign' state formations were.
I cannot deal here with the historical question of how these individual states came to be established, but I must call attention to the fact that hardly in any case did their frontiers coincide with ethical frontiers of the inhabitants. They were purely political phenomena which for the most part emerged during the sad epoch when the German Empire was in a state of exhaustion and was dismembered. They represented both cause and effect in the process of exhaustion and partition of our fatherland.
The Constitution of the old Reich took all this into account, at least up to a certain degree, in so far as the individual states were not accorded equal representation in the Reichstag, but a representation proportionate to their respective areas, their actual importance and the role which they played in the formation of the Reich.
The sovereign rights which the individual states renounced in order to form the Reich were voluntarily ceded only to a very small degree. For the most part they had no practical existence or they were simply taken by Prussia under the pressure of her preponderant power. The principle followed by Bismarck was not to give the Reich what he could take from the individual states but to demand from the individual states only what was absolutely necessary for the Reich. A moderate and wise policy. On the one side Bismarck showed the greatest regard for customs and traditions; on the other side his policy secured for the new Reich from its foundation onwards a great measure of love and willing co-operation. But it would be a fundamental error to attribute Bismarck's decision to any conviction on his part that the Reich was thus acquiring all the rights of sovereignty which would suflice for all time. That was far from Bismarck's idea. On the contrary, he wished to leave over for the future what it would be difficult to carry through at the moment and might not have been readily agreed to by the individual states. He trusted to the levelling effect of time and to the pressure exercised by the process of evolution, the steady action of which appeared more effective than an attempt to break the resistance which the individual states offered at the moment. By this policy he showed his great ability in the art of statesmanship. And, as a matter of fact, the sovereignty of the Reich has continually increased at the cost of the sovereignty of the individual states. The passing of time has achieved what Bismarck hoped it would.
The German collapse and the abolition of the monarchical form of government necessarily hastened this development. The German federal states, which had not been grounded on ethnical foundations but arose rather out of political conditions, were bound to lose their importance the moment the monarchical form of government and the dynasties connected with it were abolished, for it was to the spirit inherent in these that the individual states owned their political origin and development. Thus deprived of their internal raison d'être, they renounced all right to survival and were induced by purely practical reasons to fuse with their neighbours or else they joined the more powerful states out of their own free will. That proved in a striking manner how extraordinarily frail was the actual sovereignty these small phantom states enjoyed, and it proved too how lightly they were estimated by their own citizens.
Though the abolition of the monarchical regime and its representatives had dealt a hard blow to the federal character of the Reich, still more destructive, from the federal point of view, was the acceptance of the obligations that resulted from the 'peace' treaty.
It was only natural and logical that the federal states should lose all sovereign control over the finances the moment the Reich, in consequence of a lost war, was subjected to financial obligations which could never be guaranteed through separate treaties with the individual states. The subsequent steps which led the Reich to take over the posts and railways were an enforced advance in the process of enslaving our people, a process which the peace treaties gradually developed. The Reich was forced to secure possession of resources which had to be constantly increased in order to satisfy the demands made by further extortions.
The form in which the powers of the Reich were thus extended to embrace the federal states was often ridiculously stupid, but in itself the procedure was logical and natural. The blame for it must be laid at the door of these men and those parties that failed in the hour of need to concentrate all their energies in an effort to bring the war to a victorious issue. The guilt lies on those parties which, especially in Bavaria, catered for their own egotistic interests during the war and refused to the Reich what the Reich had to requisition to a tenfold greater measure when the war was lost. The retribution of History! Rarely has the vengeance of Heaven followed so closely on the crime as it did in this case. Those same parties which, a few years previously, placed the interests of their own states – especially in Bavaria – before those of the Reich had now to look on passively while the pressure of events forced the Reich, in its own interests, to abolish the existence of the individual states. They were the victims of their own defaults.
It was an unparalleled example of hypocrisy to raise the cry of lamentation over the loss which the federal states suffered in being deprived of their sovereign rights. This cry was raised before the electorate, for it is only to the electorate that our contemporary parties address themselves. But these parties, without exception, outbid one another in accepting a policy of fulfilment which, by the sheer force of circumstances and in its ultimate consequences, could not but lead to a profound alteration in the internal structure of the Reich. Bismarck's Reich was free and unhampered by any obligations towards the outside world.
Bismarck's Reich never had to shoulder such heavy and entirely unproductive obligations as those to which Germany was subjected under the Dawes Plan. Also in domestic affairs Bismarck's Reich was able to limit its powers to a few matters that were absolutely necessary for its existence. Therefore it could dispense with the necessity of a financial control over these states and could live from their contributions. On the other side the relatively small financial tribute which the federal states had to pay to the Reich induced them to welcome its existence. But it is untrue and unjust to state now, as certain propagandists do, that the federal states are displeased with the Reich merely because of their financial subjection to it. No, that is not how the matter really stands. The lack of sympathy for the political idea embodied in the Reich is not due to the loss of sovereign rights on the part of the individual states. It is much more the result of the deplorable fashion in which the present régime cares for the interests of the German people. Despite all the celebrations in honour of the national flag and the Constitution, every section of the German people feels that the present Reich is not in accordance with its heart's desire. And the Law for the Protection of the Republic may prevent outrages against republican institutions, but it will not gain the love of one single German. In its constant anxiety to protect itself against its own citizens by means of laws and sentences of imprisonment, the Republic has aroused sharp and humiliating criticism of all republican institutions as such.
For another reason also it is untrue to say, as certain parties affirm today, that the Reich has ceased to be popular on account of its overbearing conduct in regard to certain sovereign rights which the individual states had heretofore enjoyed. Supposing the Reich had not extended its authority over the individual states, there is no reason to believe that it would find more favour among those states if the general obligations remained so heavy as they now are. On the contrary, if the individual states had to pay their respective shares of the highly increased tribute which the Reich has to meet today in order to fulfil the provisions of the Versailles Dictate, the hostility towards the Reich would be infinitely greater. For then not only would it prove difficult to collect the respective contributions due to the Reich from the federal states, but coercive methods would have to be employed in making the collections. The Republic stands on the footing of the peace treaties and has neither the courage nor the intention to break them. That being so, it must observe the obligations which the peace treaties have imposed on it. The responsibility for this situation is to be attributed solely to those parties who preach unceasingly to the patient electoral masses on the necessity of maintaining the autonomy of the federal states, while at the same time they champion and demand of the Reich a policy which must necessarily lead to the suppression of even the very last of those so-called 'sovereign' rights.
I say necessarily because the present Reich has no other possible means of bearing the burden of charges which an insane domestic and foreign policy has laid on it. Here still another wedge is placed on the former, to drive it in still deeper. Every new debt which the Reich contracts, through the criminal way in which the interests of Germany are represented vis-à-vis foreign countries, necessitates a new and stronger blow which drives the under wedges still deeper, That blow demands another step in the progressive abolition of the sovereign rights of the individual states, so as not to allow the germs of opposition to rise up into activity or even to exist.
The chief characteristic difference between the policy of the present Reich and that of former times lies in this: The old Reich gave freedom to its people at home and showed itself strong towards the outside world, whereas the Republic shows itself weak towards the stranger and oppresses its own citizens at home. In both cases one attitude determines the other. A vigorous national State does not need to make many laws for the interior, because of the affection and attachment of its citizens. The international servile State can live only by coercing its citizens to render it the services it demands. And it is a piece of impudent falsehood for the present regime to speak of 'Free citizens'. Only the old Germany could speak in that manner. The present Republic is a colony of slaves at the service of the stranger. At best it has subjects, but not citizens. Hence it does not possess a national flag but only a trade mark, introduced and protected by official decree and legislative measures. This symbol, which is the Gessler's cap of German Democracy, will always remain alien to the spirit of our people. On its side, the Republic having no sense of tradition or respect for past greatness, dragged the symbol of the past in the mud, but it will be surprised one day to discover how superficial is the devotion of its citizens to its own symbol. The Republic has given to itself the character of an intermezzo in German history. And so this State is bound constantly to restrict more and more the sovereign rights of the individual states, not only for general reasons of a financial character but also on principle. For by enforcing a policy of financial blackmail, to squeeze the last ounce of substance out of its people, it is forced also to take their last rights away from them, lest the general discontent may one day flame up into open rebellion.
We, National Socialists, would reverse this formula and would adopt the following axiom: A strong national Reich which recognizes and protects to the largest possible measure the rights of its citizens both within and outside its frontiers can allow freedom to reign at home without trembling for the safety of the State. On the other hand, a strong national Government can intervene to a considerable degree in the liberties of the individual subject as well as in the liberties of the constituent states without thereby weakening the ideal of the Reich; and it can do this while recognizing its responsibility for the ideal of the Reich, because in these particular acts and measures the individual citizen recognizes a means of promoting the prestige of the nation as a whole.
Of course, every State in the world has to face the question of unification in its internal organization. And Germany is no exception in this matter. Nowadays it is absurd to speak of 'statal sovereignty' for the constituent states of the Reich, because that has already become impossible on account of the ridiculously small size of so many of these states. In the sphere of commerce as well as that of administration the importance of the individual states has been steadily decreasing. Modern means of communication and mechanical progress have been increasingly restricting distance and space. What was once a State is today only a province and the territory covered by a modern State had once the importance of a continent. The purely technical difficulty of administering a State like Germany is not greater than that of governing a province like Brandenburg a hundred years ago. And today it is easier to cover the distance from Munich to Berlin than it was to cover the distance from Munich to Starnberg a hundred years ago. In view of the modern means of transport, the whole territory of the Reich today is smaller than that of certain German federal states at the time of the Napoleonic wars. To close one's eyes to the consequences of these facts means to live in the past. There always were, there are and always will be, men who do this. They may retard but they cannot stop the revolutions of history.
We, National Socialists, must not allow the consequences of that truth to pass by us unnoticed. In these matters also we must not permit ourselves to be misled by the phrases of our so-called national bourgeois parties. I say 'phrases', because these same parodies do not seriously believe that it is possible for them to carry out their proposals, and because they themselves are the chief culprits and also the accomplices responsible for the present state of affairs. Especially in Bavaria, the demands for a halt in the process of centralization can be no more than a party move behind which there is no serious idea. If these parties ever had to pass from the realm of phrase-making into that of practical deeds they would present a sorry spectacle. Every so-called 'Robbery of Sovereign Rights' from Bavaria by the Reich has met with no practical resistance, except for some fatuous barking by way of protest. Indeed, when anyone seriously opposed the madness that was shown in carrying out this system of centralization he was told by those same parties that he understood nothing of the nature and needs of the State today. They slandered him and pronounced him anathema and persecuted him until he was either shut up in prison or illegally deprived of the right of public speech. In the light of these facts our followers should become all the more convinced of the profound hypocrisy which characterizes these so-called federalist circles. To a certain extent they use the federalist doctrine just as they use the name of religion, merely as a means of promoting their own base party interests.
A certain unification, especially in the field of transport., appears logical. But we, National Socialists, feel it our duty to oppose with all our might such a development in the modern State, especially when the measures proposed are solely for the purpose of screening a disastrous foreign policy and making it possible. And just because the present Reich has threatened to take over the railways, the posts, the finances, etc., not from the high standpoint of a national policy, but in order to have in its hands the means and pledges for an unlimited policy of fulfilment – for that reason we, National Socialists, must take every step that seems suitable to obstruct and, if possible, definitely to prevent such a policy. We must fight against the present system of amalgamating institutions that are vitally important for the existence of our people, because this system is being adopted solely to facilitate the payment of milliards and the transference of pledges to the stranger, under the post-War provisions which our politicians have accepted.
For these reasons also the National Socialist Movement has to take up a stand against such tendencies.
Moreover, we must oppose such centralization because in domestic affairs it helps to reinforce a system of government which in all its manifestations has brought the greatest misfortunes on the German nation. The present Jewish-Democratic Reich, which has become a veritable curse for the German people, is seeking to negative the force of the criticism offered by all the federal states which have not yet become imbued with the spirit of the age, and is trying to carry out this policy by crushing them to the point of annihilation. In face of this we National Socialists must try to ground the opposition of the individual states on such a basis that it will be able to operate with a good promise of success. We must do this by transforming the struggle against centralization into something that will be an expression of the higher interests of the German nation as such. Therefore, while the Bavarian Populist Party, acting from its own narrow and particularist standpoint, fights to maintain the 'special rights' of the Bavarian State, we ought to stand on quite a different ground in fighting for the same rights. Our grounds ought to be those of the higher national interests in opposition to the November Democracy.
A still further reason for opposing a centralizing process of that kind arises from the certain conviction that in great part this so-called nationalization does not make for unification at all and still less for simplification. In many cases it is adopted simply as a means of removing from the sovereign control of the individual states certain institutions which they wish to place in the hands of the revolutionary parties. In German History favouritism has never been of so base a character as in the democratic republic. A great portion of this centralization today is the work of parties which once promised that they would open the way for the promotion of talent, meaning thereby that they would fill those posts and offices entirely with their own partisans. Since the foundation of the Republic the Jews especially have been obtaining positions in the economic institutions taken over by the Reich and also positions in the national administration, so that the one and the other have become preserves of Jewry.
For tactical reasons, this last consideration obliges us to watch with the greatest attention every further attempt at centralization and fight it at each step. But in doing this our standpoint must always be that of a lofty national policy and never a pettifogging particularism.
This last observation is necessary, lest an opinion might arise among our own followers that we do not accredit to the Reich the right of incorporating in itself a sovereignty which is superior to that of the constituent states. As regards this right we cannot and must not entertain the slightest doubt. Because for us the State is nothing but a form. Its substance, or content, is the essential thing. And that is the nation, the people. It is clear therefore that every other interest must be subordinated to the supreme interests of the nation. In particular we cannot accredit to any other state a sovereign power and sovereign rights within the confines of the nation and the Reich, which represents the nation. The absurdity which some federal states commit by maintaining 'representations' abroad and corresponding foreign 'representations' among themselves – that must cease and will cease. Until this happens we cannot be surprised if certain foreign countries are dubious about the political unity of the Reich and act accordingly. The absurdity of these 'representations' is all the greater because they do harm and do not bring the slightest advantage. If the interests of a German abroad cannot be protected by the ambassador of the Reich, much less can they be protected by the minister from some small federal state which appears ridiculous in the framework of the present world order. The real truth is that these small federal states are envisaged as points of attack for attempts at secession, which prospect is always pleasing to a certain foreign State. We, National Socialists, must not allow some noble caste which has become effete with age to occupy an ambassadorial post abroad, with the idea that by engrafting one of its withered branches in new soil the green leaves may sprout again. Already in the time of the old Reich our diplomatic representatives abroad were such a sorry lot that a further trial of that experience would be out of the question.
It is certain that in the future the importance of the individual states will be transferred to the sphere of our cultural policy. The monarch who did most to make Bavaria an important centre was not an obstinate particularist with anti-German tendencies, but Ludwig I who was as much devoted to the ideal of German greatness as he was to that of art. His first consideration was to use the powers of the state to develop the cultural position of Bavaria and not its political power. And in doing this he produced better and more durable results than if he had followed any other line of conduct. Up to this time Munich was a provincial residence town of only small importance, but he transformed it into the metropolis of German art and by doing so he made it an intellectual centre which even today holds Franconia to Bavaria, though the Franconians are of quite a different temperament. If Munich had remained as it had been earlier, what has happened in Saxony would have been repeated in Bavaria, with the diAerence that Leipzig and Bavarian Nürnberg would have become, not Bavarian but Franconian cities. It was not the cry of "Down with Prussia" that made Munich great. What made this a city of importance was the King who wished to present it to the German nation as an artistic jewel that would have to be seen and appreciated, and so it has turned out in fact. Therein lies a lesson for the future. The importance of the individual states in the future will no longer lie in their political or statal power. I look to them rather as important ethnical and cultural centres. But even in this respect time will do its levelling work. Modern travelling facilities shuffle people among one another in such a way that tribal boundaries will fade out and even the cultural picture will gradually become more of a uniform pattern.
The army must definitely be kept clear of the influence of the individual states. The coming National Socialist State must not fall back into the error of the past by imposing on the army a task which is not within its sphere and never should have been assigned to it. The German army does not exist for the purpose of being a school in which tribal particularisms are to be cultivated and preserved, but rather as a school for teaching all the Germans to understand and adapt their habits to one another. Whatever tends to have a separating influence in the life of the nation ought to be made a unifying influence in the army. The army must raise the German boy above the narrow horizon of his own little native province and set him within the broad picture of the nation. The youth must learn to know, not the confines of his own region but those of the fatherland, because it is the latter that he will have to defend one day. It is therefore absurd to have the German youth do his military training in his own native region. During that period he ought to learn to know Germany. This is all the more important today, since young Germans no longer travel on their own account as they once used to do and thus enlarge their horizon. In view of this, is it not absurd to leave the young Bavarian recruit at Munich, the recruit from Baden at Baden itself and the Württemberger at Stuttgart and so on? And would it not be more reasonable to show the Rhine and the North Sea to the Bavarian, the Alps to the native of Hamburg and the mountains of Central Germany to the boy from East Prussia? The character proper to each region ought to be maintained in the troops but not in the training garrisons. We may disapprove of every attempt at unification but not that of unifying the army. On the contrary, even though we should wish to welcome no other kind of unification, this must be greeted with joy. In view of the size of the present army of the Reich, it would be absurd to maintain the federal divisions among the troops. Moreover, in the unification of the German army which has actually been effected we see a fact which we must not renounce but restore in the future national army.
Finally a new and triumphant idea should burst every chain which tends to paralyse its efforts to push forward. National Socialism must claim the right to impose its principles on the whole German nation, without regard to what were hitherto the confines of federal states. And we must educate the German nation in our ideas and principles. As the Churches do not feel themselves bound or limited by political confines, so the National Socialist Idea cannot feel itself limited to the territories of the individual federal states that belong to our Fatherland.
The National Socialist doctrine is not handmaid to the political interests of the single federal states. One day it must become teacher to the whole German nation. It must determine the life of the whole people and shape that life anew. For this reason we must imperatively demand the right to overstep boundaries that have been traced by a political development which we repudiate.
The more completely our ideas triumph, the more liberty can we concede in particular affairs to our citizens at home.


Chapter XI: Propaganda and Organization

The year 1921 was specially important for me from many points of view.
When I entered the German Labour Party I at once took charge of the propaganda, believing this branch to be far the most important for the time being. Just then it was not a matter of pressing necessity to cudgel one's brains over problems of organization. The first necessity was to spread our ideas among as many people as possible. Propaganda should go well ahead of organization and gather together the human material for the latter to work up. I have never been in favour of hasty and pedantic methods of organization, because in most cases the result is merely a piece of dead mechanism and only rarely a living organization. Organization is a thing that derives its existence from organic life, organic evolution. When the same set of ideas have found a lodgement in the minds of a certain number of people they tend of themselves to form a certain degree of order among those people and out of this inner formation something that is very valuable arises. Of course here, as everywhere else, one must take account of those human weaknesses which make men hesitate, especially at the beginning, to submit to the control of a superior mind. If an organization is imposed from above downwards in a mechanical fashion, there is always the danger that some individual may push himself forward who is not known for what he is and who, out of jealousy, will try to hinder abler persons from taking a leading place in the movement. The damage that results from that kind of thing may have fatal consequences, especially in a new movement.
For this reason it is advisable first to propagate and publicly expound the ideas on which the movement is founded. This work of propaganda should continue for a certain time and should be directed from one centre. When the ideas have gradually won over a number of people this human material should be carefully sifted for the purpose of selecting those who have ability in leadership and putting that ability to the test. It will often be found that apparently insignificant persons will nevertheless turn out to be born leaders.
Of course, it is quite a mistake to suppose that those who show a very intelligent grasp of the theory underlying a movement are for that reason qualified to fill responsible positions on the directorate. The contrary is very frequently the case.
Great masters of theory are only very rarely great organizers also. And this is because the greatness of the theorist and founder of a system consists in being able to discover and lay down those laws that are right in the abstract, whereas the organizer must first of all be a man of psychological insight. He must take men as they are, and for that reason he must know them, not having too high or too low an estimate of human nature. He must take account of their weaknesses, their baseness and all the other various characteristics, so as to form something out of them which will be a living organism, endowed with strong powers of resistance, fitted to be the carrier of an idea and strong enough to ensure the triumph of that idea.
But it is still more rare to find a great theorist who is at the same time a great leader. For the latter must be more of an agitator, a truth that will not be readily accepted by many of those who deal with problems only from the scientific standpoint. And yet what I say is only natural. For an agitator who shows himself capable of expounding ideas to the great masses must always be a psychologist, even though he may be only a demagogue. Therefore he will always be a much more capable leader than the contemplative theorist who meditates on his ideas, far from the human throng and the world. For to be a leader means to be able to move the masses. The gift of formulating ideas has nothing whatsoever to do with the capacity for leadership. It would be entirely futile to discuss the question as to which is the more important: the faculty of conceiving ideals and human aims or that of being able to have them put into practice. Here, as so often happens in life, the one would be entirely meaningless without the other. The noblest conceptions of the human understanding remain without purpose or value if the leader cannot move the masses towards them. And, conversely, what would it avail to have all the genius and elan of a leader if the intellectual theorist does not fix the aims for which mankind must struggle. But when the abilities of theorist and organizer and leader are united in the one person, then we have the rarest phenomenon on this earth. And it is that union which produces the great man.
As I have already said, during my first period in the Party I devoted myself to the work of propaganda. I had to succeed in gradually gathering together a small nucleus of men who would accept the new teaching and be inspired by it. And in this way we should provide the human material which subsequently would form the constituent elements of the organization. Thus the goal of the propagandist is nearly always fixed far beyond that of the organizer.
If a movement proposes to overthrow a certain order of things and construct a new one in its place, then the following principles must be clearly understood and must dominate in the ranks of its leadership: Every movement which has gained its human material must first divide this material into two groups: namely, followers and members.
It is the task of the propagandist to recruit the followers and it is the task of the organizer to select the members.
The follower of a movement is he who understands and accepts its aims; the member is he who fights for them.
The follower is one whom the propaganda has converted to the doctrine of the movement. The member is he who will be charged by the organization to collaborate in winning over new followers from which in turn new members can be formed.
To be a follower needs only the passive recognition of the idea. To be a member means to represent that idea and fight for it. From ten followers one can have scarcely more than two members. To be a follower simply implies that a man has accepted the teaching of the movement; whereas to be a member means that a man has the courage to participate actively in diffusing that teaching in which he has come to believe.
Because of its passive character, the simple effort of believing in a political doctrine is enough for the majority, for the majority of mankind is mentally lazy and timid. To be a member one must be intellectually active, and therefore this applies only to the minority.
Such being the case, the propagandist must seek untiringly to acquire new followers for the movement, whereas the organizer must diligently look out for the best elements among such followers, so that these elements may be transformed into members. The propagandist need not trouble too much about the personal worth of the individual proselytes he has won for the movement. He need not inquire into their abilities, their intelligence or character. From these proselytes, however, the organizer will have to select those individuals who are most capable of actively helping to bring the movement to victory.
The propagandist aims at inducing the whole people to accept his teaching. The organizer includes in his body of membership only those who, on psychological grounds, will not be an impediment to the further diffusion of the doctrines of the movement.
The propagandist inculcates his doctrine among the masses, with the idea of preparing them for the time when this doctrine will triumph, through the body of combatant members which he has formed from those followers who have given proof of the necessary ability and will-power to carry the struggle to victory.
The final triumph of a doctrine will be made all the more easy if the propagandist has effectively converted large bodies of men to the belief in that doctrine and if the organization that actively conducts the fight be exclusive, vigorous and solid.
When the propaganda work has converted a whole people to believe in a doctrine, the organization can turn the results of this into practical effect through the work of a mere handful of men. Propaganda and organization, therefore follower and member, then stand towards one another in a definite mutual relationship. The better the propaganda has worked, the smaller will the organization be. The greater the number of followers, so much the smaller can be the number of members. And conversely. If the propaganda be bad, the organization must be large. And if there be only a small number of followers, the membership must be all the larger – if the movement really counts on being successful.
The first duty of the propagandist is to win over people who can subsequently be taken into the organization. And the first duty of the organization is to select and train men who will be capable of carrying on the propaganda. The second duty of the organization is to disrupt the existing order of things and thus make room for the penetration of the new teaching which it represents, while the duty of the organizer must be to fight for the purpose of securing power, so that the doctrine may finally triumph.
A revolutionary conception of the world and human existence will always achieve decisive success when the new Weltanschhauung has been taught to a whole people, or subsequently forced upon them if necessary, and when, on the other hand, the central organization, the movement itself, is in the hands of only those few men who are absolutely indispensable to form the nerve-centres of the coming State.
Put in another way, this means that in every great revolutionary movement that is of world importance the idea of this movement must always be spread abroad through the operation of propaganda. The propagandist must never tire in his efforts to make the new ideas clearly understood, inculcating them among others, or at least he must place himself in the position of those others and endeavour to upset their confidence in the convictions they have hitherto held. In order that such propaganda should have backbone to it, it must be based on an organization. The organization chooses its members from among those followers whom the propaganda has won. That organization will become all the more vigorous if the work of propaganda be pushed forward intensively. And the propaganda will work all the better when the organization back of it is vigorous and strong in itself.
Hence the supreme task of the organizer is to see to it that any discord or differences which may arise among the members of the movement will not lead to a split and thereby cramp the work within the movement. Moreover, it is the duty of the organization to see that the fighting spirit of the movement does not flag or die out but that it is constantly reinvigorated and restrengthened. It is not necessary the number of members should increase indefinitely. Quite the contrary would be better. In view of the fact that only a fraction of humanity has energy and courage, a movement which increases its own organization indefinitely must of necessity one day become plethoric and inactive. Organizations, that is to say, groups of members, which increase their size beyond certain dimensions gradually lose their fighting force and are no longer in form to back up the propagation of a doctrine with aggressive elan and determination.
Now the greater and more revolutionary a doctrine is, so much the more active will be the spirit inspiring its body of members, because the subversive energy of such a doctrine will frighten way the chicken-hearted and small-minded bourgeoisie. In their hearts they may believe in the doctrine but they are afraid to acknowledge their belief openly. By reason of this very fact, however, an organization inspired by a veritable revolutionary idea will attract into the body of its membership only the most active of those believers who have been won for it by its propaganda. It is in this activity on the part of the membership body, guaranteed by the process of natural selection, that we are to seek the prerequisite conditions for the continuation of an active and spirited propaganda and also the victorious struggle for the success of the idea on which the movement is based.
The greatest danger that can threaten a movement is an abnormal increase in the number of its members, owing to its too rapid success. So long as a movement has to carry on a hard and bitter fight, people of weak and fundamentally egotistic temperament will steer very clear of it; but these will try to be accepted as members the moment the party achieves a manifest success in the course of its development.
It is on these grounds that we are to explain why so many movements which were at first successful slowed down before reaching the fulfilment of their purpose and, from an inner weakness which could not otherwise be explained, gave up the struggle and finally disappeared from the field. As a result of the early successes achieved, so many undesirable, unworthy and especially timid individuals became members of the movement that they finally secured the majority and stifled the fighting spirit of the others. These inferior elements then turned the movement to the service of their personal interests and, debasing it to the level of their own miserable heroism, no longer struggled for the triumph of the original idea. The fire of the first fervour died out, the fighting spirit flagged and, as the bourgeois world is accustomed to say very justly in such cases, the party mixed water with its wine.
For this reason it is necessary that a movement should, from the sheer instinct of self-preservation, close its lists to new membership the moment it becomes successful. And any further increase in its organization should be allowed to take place only with the most careful foresight and after a painstaking sifting of those who apply for membership. Only thus will it be possible to keep the kernel of the movement intact and fresh and sound. Care must be taken that the conduct of the movement is maintained exclusively in the hands of this original nucleus. This means that the nucleus must direct the propaganda which aims at securing general recognition for the movement. And the movement itself, when it has secured power in its hands, must carry out all those acts and measures which are necessary in order that its ideas should be finally established in practice.
With those elements that originally made the movement, the organization should occupy all the important positions that have been conquered and from those elements the whole directorate should be formed. This should continue until the maxims and doctrines of the party have become the foundation and policy of the new State. Only then will it be permissible gradually to give the reins into the hands of the Constitution of that State which the spirit of the movement has created. But this usually happens through a process of mutual rivalry, for here it is less a question of human intelligence than of the play and effect of the forces whose development may indeed be foreseen from the start but not perpetually controlled.
All great movements, whether of a political or religious nature, owe their imposing success to the recognition and adoption of those principles. And no durable success is conceivable if these laws are not observed.
As director of propaganda for the party, I took care not merely to prepare the ground for the greatness of the movement in its subsequent stages, but I also adopted the most radical measures against allowing into the organization any other than the best material. For the more radical and exciting my propaganda was, the more did it frighten weak and wavering characters away, thus preventing them from entering the first nucleus of our organization. Perhaps they remained followers, but they did not raise their voices. On the contrary, they maintained a discreet silence on the fact. Many thousands of persons then assured me that they were in full agreement with us but they could not on any account become members of our party. They said that the movement was so radical that to take part in it as members would expose them to grave censures and grave dangers, so that they would rather continue to be looked upon as honest and peaceful citizens and remain aside, for the time being at least, though devoted to our cause with all their hearts.
And that was all to the good. If all these men who in their hearts did not approve of revolutionary ideas came into our movement as members at that time, we should be looked upon as a pious confraternity today and not as a young movement inspired with the spirit of combat.
The lively and combative form which I gave to all our propaganda fortified and guaranteed the radical tendency of our movement, and the result was that, with a few exceptions, only men of radical views were disposed to become members.
It was due to the effect of our propaganda that within a short period of time hundreds of thousands of citizens became convinced in their hearts that we were right and wished us victory, although personally they were too timid to make sacrifices for our cause or even participate in it.
Up to the middle of 1921 this simple activity of gathering in followers was sufficient and was of value to the movement. But in the summer of that year certain events happened which made it seem opportune for us to bring our organization into line with the manifest successes which the propaganda had achieved.
An attempt made by a group of patriotic visionaries, supported by the chairman of the party at that time, to take over the direction of the party led to the break up of this little intrigue and, by a unanimous vote at a general meeting, entrusted the entire direction of the party to my own hands. At the same time a new statute was passed which invested sole responsibility in the chairman of the movement, abolished the system of resolutions in committee and in its stead introduced the principle of division of labour which since that time has worked excellently.
From August 1st, 1921, onwards I undertook this internal reorganization of the party and was supported by a number of excellent men. I shall mention them and their work individually later on.
In my endeavour to turn the results gained by the propaganda to the advantage of the organization and thus stabilize them, I had to abolish completely a number of old customs and introduce regulations which none of the other parties possessed or had adopted.
In the years 1920-21 the movement was controlled by a committee elected by the members at a general meeting. The committee was composed of a first and second treasurer, a first and second secretary, and a first and second chairman at the head of it. In addition to these there was a representative of the members, the director of propaganda, and various assessors.
Comically enough, the committee embodied the very principle against which the movement itself wanted to fight with all its energy, namely, the principle of parliamentarianism. Here was a principle which personified everything that was being opposed by the movement, from the smallest local groups to the district and regional groups, the state groups and finally the national directorate itself. It was a system under which we all suffered and are still suffering.
It was imperative to change this state of affairs forthwith, if this bad foundation in the internal organization was not to keep the movement insecure and render the fulfilment of its high mission impossible.
The sessions of the committee, which were ruled by a protocol, and in which decisions were made according to the vote of the majority, presented the picture of a miniature parliament. Here also there was no such thing as personal responsibility. And here reigned the same absurdities and illogical state of affairs as flourish in our great representative bodies of the State. Names were presented to this committee for election as secretaries, treasurers, representatives of the members of the organization, propaganda agents and God knows what else. And then they all acted in common on every particular question and decided it by vote. Accordingly, the director of propaganda voted on a question that concerned the man who had to do with the finances and the latter in his turn voted on a question that concerned only the organization as such, the organizer voting on a subject that had to do with the secretarial department, and so on.
Why select a special man for propaganda if treasurers and scribes and commissaries, etc., had to deliver judgment on questions concerning it? To a person of commonsense that sort of thing seemed as incomprehensible as it would be if in a great manufacturing concern the board of directors were to decide on technical questions of production or if, inversely, the engineers were to decide on questions of administration.
I refused to countenance that kind of folly and after a short time I ceased to appear at the meetings of the committee. I did nothing else except attend to my own department of propaganda and I did not permit any of the others to poke their heads into my activities. Conversely, I did not interfere in the affairs of others.
When the new statute was approved and I was appointed as president, I had the necessary authority in my hands and also the corresponding right to make short shrift of all that nonsense. In the place of decisions by the majority vote of the committee, the principle of absolute responsibility was introduced.
The chairman is responsible for the whole control of the movement. He apportions the work among the members of the committee subordinate to him and for special work he selects other individuals. Each of these gentlemen must bear sole responsibility for the task assigned to him. He is subordinate only to the chairman, whose duty is to supervise the general collaboration, selecting the personnel and giving general directions for the co-ordination of the common work.
This principle of absolute responsibility is being adopted little by little throughout the movement. In the small local groups and perhaps also in the regional and district groups it will take yet a long time before the principle can be thoroughly imposed, because timid and hesitant characters are naturally opposed to it. For them the idea of bearing absolute responsibility for an act opens up an unpleasant prospect. They would like to hide behind the shoulders of the majority in the so-called committee, having their acts covered by decisions passed in that way. But it seems to me a matter of absolute necessity to take a decisive stand against that view, to make no concessions whatsoever to this fear of responsibility, even though it takes some time before we can put fully into effect this concept of duty and ability in leadership, which will finally bring forward leaders who have the requisite abilities to occupy the chief posts.
In any case, a movement which must fight against the absurdity of parliamentary institutions must be immune from this sort of thing. Only thus will it have the requisite strength to carry on the struggle.
At a time when the majority dominates everywhere else a movement which is based on the principle of one leader who has to bear personal responsibility for the direction of the official acts of the movement itself will one day overthrow the present situation and triumph over the existing regime. That is a mathematical certainty.
This idea made it necessary to reorganize our movement internally. The logical development of this reorganization brought about a clear-cut distinction between the economic section of the movement and the general political direction. The principle of personal responsibility was extended to all the administrative branches of the party and it brought about a healthy renovation, by liberating them from political influences and allowing them to operate solely on economic principles.
In the autumn of 1921, when the party was founded, there were only six members. The party did not have any headquarters, nor officials, nor formularies, nor a stamp, nor printed material of any sort. The committee first held its sittings in a restaurant on the Herrengasse and then in a café at Gasteig. This state of affairs could not last. So I at once took action in the matter. I went around to several restaurants and hotels in Munich, with the idea of renting a room in one of them for the use of the Party. In the old Sterneckerbräu im Tal, there was a small room with arched roof, which in earlier times was used as a sort of festive tavern where the Bavarian Counsellors of the Holy Roman Empire foregathered. It was dark and dismal and accordingly well suited to its ancient uses, though less suited to the new purpose it was now destined to serve. The little street on which its one window looked out was so narrow that even on the brightest summer day the room remained dim and sombre. Here we took up our first fixed abode. The rent came to fifty marks per month, which was then an enormous sum for us. But our exigencies had to be very modest. We dared not complain even when they removed the wooden wainscoting a few days after we had taken possession. This panelling had been specially put up for the Imperial Counsellors. The place began to look more like a grotto than an office.
Still it marked an important step forward. Slowly we had electric light installed and later on a telephone. A table and some borrowed chairs were brought, an open paper-stand and later on a cupboard. Two sideboards, which belonged to the landlord, served to store our leaflets, placards, etc.
As time went on it turned out impossible to direct the course of the movement merely by holding a committee meeting once a week. The current business administration of the movement could not be regularly attended to except we had a salaried official.
But that was then very difficult for us. The movement had still so few members that it was hard to find among them a suitable person for the job who would be content with very little for himself and at the same time would be ready to meet the manifold demands which the movement would make on his time and energy.
After long searching we discovered a soldier who consented to become our first administrator. His name was Schüssler, an old war comrade of mine. At first he came to our new office every day between six and eight o'clock in the evening. Later on he came from five to eight and subsequently for the whole afternoon. Finally it became a full-time job and he worked in the office from morning until late at night. He was an industrious, upright and thoroughly honest man, faithful and devoted to the movement. He brought with him a small Adler typewriter of his own. It was the first machine to be used in the service of the party. Subsequently the party bought it by paying for it in installments. We needed a small safe in order to keep our papers and register of membership from danger of being stolen – not to guard our funds, which did not then exist. On the contrary, our financial position was so miserable that I often had to dip my hand into my own personal savings.
After eighteen months our business quarters had become too small, so we moved to a new place in the Cornelius Strasse. Again our office was in a restaurant, but instead of one room we now had three smaller rooms and one large room with great windows. At that time this appeared a wonderful thing to us. We remained there until the end of November 1923.
In December 1920, we acquired the Völkischer Beobachter. This newspaper which, as its name implies, championed the claims of the people, was now to become the organ of the German National Socialist Labour Party. At first it appeared twice weekly; but at the beginning of 1928 it became a daily paper, and at the end of August in the same year it began to appear in the large format which is now well known.
As a complete novice in journalism I then learned many a lesson for which I had to pay dearly.
In contradistinction to the enormous number of papers in Jewish hands, there was at that time only one important newspaper that defended the cause of the people. This was a matter for grave consideration. As I have often learned by experience, the reason for that state of things must be attributed to the incompetent way in which the business side of the so-called popular newspapers was managed. These were conducted too much according to the rule that opinion should prevail over action that produces results. Quite a wrong standpoint, for opinion is of itself something internal and finds its best expression in productive activity. The man who does valuable work for his people expresses thereby his excellent sentiments, whereas another who merely talks about his opinions and does nothing that is of real value or use to the people is a person who perverts all right thinking. And that attitude of his is also pernicious for the community.
The Völkische Beobachter was a so-called 'popular' organ, as its name indicated. It had all the good qualities, but still more the errors and weaknesses, inherent in all popular institutions. Though its contents were excellent, its management as a business concern was simply impossible. Here also the underlying idea was that popular newspapers ought to be subsidized by popular contributions, without recognizing that it had to make its way in competition with the others and that it was dishonest to expect the subscriptions of good patriots to make up for the mistaken management of the undertaking.
I took care to alter those conditions promptly, for I recognized the danger lurking in them. Luck was on my side here, inasmuch as it brought me the man who since that time has rendered innumerable services to the movement, not only as business manager of the newspaper but also as business manager of the party. In 1914, in the War, I made the acquaintance of Max Amann, who was then my superior and is today general business Director of the Party. During four years in the War I had occasion to observe almost continually the unusual ability, the diligence and the rigorous conscientiousness of my future collaborator.
In the summer of 1921 I applied to my old regimental comrade, whom I met one day by chance, and asked him to become business manager of the movement. At that time the movement was passing through a grave crisis and I had reason to be dissatisfied with several of our officials, with one of whom I had had a very bitter experience. Amann then held a good situation in which there were also good prospects for him.
After long hesitation he agreed to my request, but only on condition that he must not be at the mercy of incompetent committees. He must be responsible to one master, and only one.
It is to the inestimable credit of this first business manager of the party, whose commercial knowledge is extensive and profound, that he brought order and probity into the various offices of the party. Since that time these have remained exemplary and cannot be equalled or excelled in this by any other branches of the movement. But, as often happens in life, great ability provokes envy and disfavour. That had also to be expected in this case and borne patiently.
Since 1922 rigorous regulations have been in force, not only for the commercial construction of the movement but also in the organization of it as such. There exists now a central filing system, where the names and particulars of all the members are enrolled. The financing of the party has been placed on sound lines. The current expenditure must be covered by the current receipts and special receipts can be used only for special expenditures. Thus, notwithstanding the difficulties of the time the movement remained practically without any debts, except for a few small current accounts. Indeed, there was a permanent increase in the funds. Things are managed as in a private business. The employed personnel hold their jobs in virtue of their practical efficiency and could not in any manner take cover behind their professed loyalty to the party. A good National Socialist proves his soundness by the readiness, diligence and capability with which he discharges whatever duties are assigned to him in whatever situation he holds within the national community. The man who does not fulfil his duty in the job he holds cannot boast of a loyalty against which he himself really sins.
Adamant against all kinds of outer influence, the new business director of the party firmly maintained the standpoint that there were no sinecure posts in the party administration for followers and members of the movement whose pleasure is not work. A movement which fights so energetically against the corruption introduced into our civil service by the various political parties must be immune from that vice in its own administrative department. It happened that some men were taken on the staff of the paper who had formerly been adherents of the Bavarian People's Party, but their work showed that they were excellently qualified for the job. The result of this experiment was generally excellent. It was owing to this honest and frank recognition of individual efficiency that the movement won the hearts of its employees more swiftly and more profoundly than had ever been the case before. Subsequently they became good National Socialists and remained so. Not in word only, but they proved it by the steady and honest and conscientious work which they performed in the service of the new movement. Naturally a well qualified party member was preferred to another who had equal qualifications but did not belong to the party. The rigid determination with which our new business chief applied these principles and gradually put them into force, despite all misunderstandings, turned out to be of great advantage to the movement. To this we owe the fact that it was possible for us – during the difficult period of the inflation, when thousands of businesses failed and thousands of newspapers had to cease publication – not only to keep the commercial department of the movement going and meet all its obligations but also to make steady progress with the Völkische Beobachter. At that time it came to be ranked among the great newspapers.
The year 1921 was of further importance for me by reason of the fact that in my position as chairman of the party I slowly but steadily succeeded in putting a stop to the criticisms and the intrusions of some members of the committee in regard to the detailed activities of the party administration. This was important, because we could not get a capable man to take on a job if nincompoops were constantly allowed to butt in, pretending that they knew everything much better; whereas in reality they had left only general chaos behind them. Then these wise-acres retired, for the most part quite modestly, to seek another field for their activities where they could supervise and tell how things ought to be done. Some men seemed to have a mania for sniffing behind everything and were, so to say, always in a permanent state of pregnancy with magnificent plans and ideas and projects and methods. Naturally their noble aim and ideal were always the formation of a committee which could pretend to be an organ of control in order to be able to sniff as experts into the regular work done by others. But it is offensive and contrary to the spirit of National Socialism when incompetent people constantly interfere in the work of capable persons. But these makers of committees do not take that very much into account. In those years I felt it my duty to safeguard against such annoyance all those who were entrusted with regular and responsible work, so that there should be no spying over the shoulder and they would be guaranteed a free hand in their day's work.
The best means of making committees innocuous, which either did nothing or cooked up impracticable decisions, was to give them some real work to do. It was then amusing to see how the members would silently fade away and were soon nowhere to be found. It made me think of that great institution of the same kind, the Reichstag. How quickly they would evanesce if they were put to some real work instead of talking, especially if each member were made personally responsible for the work assigned to him.
I always demanded that, just as in private life so also in the movement, one should not tire of seeking until the best and honestest and manifestly the most competent person could be found for the position of leader or administrator in each section of the movement. Once installed in his position he was given absolute authority and full freedom of action towards his subordinates and full responsibility towards his superiors. Nobody was placed in a position of authority towards his subordinates unless he himself was competent in the work entrusted to them. In the course of two years I brought my views more and more into practice; so that today, at least as far as the higher direction of the movement is concerned, they are accepted as a matter of course.
The manifest success of this attitude was shown on November 9th, 1923. Four years previously, when I entered the movement, it did not have even a rubber stamp. On November 9th, 1923, the party was dissolved and its property confiscated. The total sum realized by all the objects of value and the paper amounted to more than 170,000 gold marks.


Chapter XII: The Trade-Union Question

Owing to the rapid growth of the movement, in 1922 we felt compelled to take a definite stand on a question which has not been fully solved even yet.
In our efforts to discover the quickest and easiest way for the movement to reach the heart of the broad masses we were always confronted with the objection that the worker could never completely belong to us while his interests in the purely vocational and economic sphere were cared for by a political organization conducted by men whose principles were quite different from ours.
That was quite a serious objection. The general belief was that a workman engaged in some trade or other could not exist if he did not belong to a trade union. Not only were his professional interests thus protected but a guarantee of permanent employment was simply inconceivable without membership in a trade union. The majority of the workers were in the trades unions. Generally speaking, the unions had successfully conducted the battle for the establishment of a definite scale of wages and had concluded agreements which guaranteed the worker a steady income. Undoubtedly the workers in the various trades benefited by the results of that campaign and, for honest men especially, conflicts of conscience must have arisen if they took the wages which had been assured through the struggle fought by the trades unions and if at the same time the men themselves withdrew from the fight.
It was difficult to discuss this problem with the average bourgeois employer. He had no understanding (or did not wish to have any) for either the material or moral side of the question. Finally he declared that his own economic interests were in principle opposed to every kind of organization which joined together the workmen that were dependent on him. Hence it was for the most part impossible to bring these bourgeois employers to take an impartial view of the situation. Here, therefore, as in so many other cases, it was necessary to appeal to disinterested outsiders who would not be subject to the temptation of fixing their attention on the trees and failing to see the forest. With a little good will on their part, they could much more easily understand a state of affairs which is of the highest importance for our present and future existence.
In the first volume of this book I have already expressed my views on the nature and purpose and necessity of trade unions. There I took up the standpoint that unless measures are undertaken by the State (usually futile in such cases) or a new ideal is introduced in our education, which would change the attitude of the employer towards the worker, no other course would be open to the latter except to defend his own interests himself by appealing to his equal rights as a contracting party within the economic sphere of the nation's existence. I stated further that this would conform to the interests of the national community if thereby social injustices could be redressed which otherwise would cause serious damage to the whole social structure. I stated, moreover, that the worker would always find it necessary to undertake this protective action as long as there were men among the employers who had no sense of their social obligations nor even of the most elementary human rights. And I concluded by saying that if such self-defence be considered necessary its form ought to be that of an association made up of the workers themselves on the basis of trades unions.
This was my general idea and it remained the same in 1922. But a clear and precise formula was still to be discovered. We could not be satisfied with merely understanding the problem. It was necessary to come to some conclusions that could be put into practice. The following questions had to be answered:
(1) Are trade unions necessary?
(2) Should the German National Socialist Labour Party itself operate on a trade unionist basis or have its members take part in trade unionist activities in some form or other?
(3) What form should a National Socialist Trades Union take? What are the tasks confronting us and the ends we must try to attain?
(4) How can we establish trade unions for such tasks and aims?
I think that I have already answered the first question adequately. In the present state of affairs I am convinced that we cannot possibly dispense with the trades unions. On the contrary, they are among the most important institutions in the economic life of the nation. Not only are they important in the sphere of social policy but also, and even more so, in the national political sphere. For when the great masses of a nation see their vital needs satisfied through a just trade unionist movement the stamina of the whole nation in its struggle for existence will be enormously reinforced thereby.
Before everything else, the trades unions are necessary as building stones for the future economic parliament, which will be made up of chambers representing the various professions and occupations.
The second question is also easy to answer. If the trade unionist movement is important, then it is clear that National Socialism ought to take a definite stand on that question, not only theoretically but also in practice. But how? That is more difficult to see clearly.
The National Socialist Movement, which aims at establishing the National Socialist People's State, must always bear steadfastly in mind the principle that every future institution under that State must be rooted in the movement itself. It is a great mistake to believe that by acquiring possession of supreme political power we can bring about a definite reorganization, suddenly starting from nothing, without the help of a certain reserve stock of men who have been trained beforehand, especially in the spirit of the movement. Here also the principle holds good that the spirit is always more important than the external form which it animates; since this form can be created mechanically and quickly. For instance, the leadership principle may be imposed on an organized political community in a dictatorial way. But this principle can become a living reality only by passing through the stages that are necessary for its own evolution. These stages lead from the smallest cell of the State organism upwards. As its bearers and representatives, the leadership principle must have a body of men who have passed through a process of selection lasting over several years, who have been tempered by the hard realities of life and thus rendered capable of carrying the principle into practical effect.
It is out of the question to think that a scheme for the Constitution of a State can be pulled out of a portfolio at a moment's notice and 'introduced' by imperative orders from above. One may try that kind of thing but the result will always be something that has not sufficient vitality to endure. It will be like a stillborn infant. The idea of it calls to mind the origin of the Weimar Constitution and the attempt to impose on the German people a new Constitution and a new flag, neither of which had any inner relation to the vicissitudes of our people's history during the last half century.
The National Socialist State must guard against all such experiments. It must grow out of an organization which has already existed for a long time. This organization must possess National Socialist life in itself, so that finally it may be able to establish a National Socialist State that will be a living reality.
As I have already said, the germ cells of this State must lie in the administrative chambers which will represent the various occupations and professions, therefore first of all in the trades unions. If this subsequent vocational representation and the Central Economic Parliament are to be National Socialist institutions, these important germ cells must be vehicles of the National Socialist concept of life. The institutions of the movement are to be brought over into the State; for the State cannot call into existence all of a sudden and as if by magic those institutions which are necessary to its existence, unless it wishes to have institutions that are bound to remain completely lifeless.
Looking at the matter from the highest standpoint, the National Socialist Movement will have to recognize the necessity of adopting its own trade-unionist policy.
It must do this for a further reason, namely because a real National Socialist education for the employer as well as for the employee, in the spirit of a mutual co-operation within the common framework of the national community, cannot be secured by theoretical instruction, appeals and exhortations, but through the struggles of daily life. In this spirit and through this spirit the movement must educate the several large economic groups and bring them closer to one another under a wider outlook. Without this preparatory work it would be sheer illusion to hope that a real national community can be brought into existence. The great ideal represented by its philosophy of life and for which the movement fights can alone form a general style of thought steadily and slowly. And this style will show that the new state of things rests on foundations that are internally sound and not merely an external façade.
Hence the movement must adopt a positive attitude towards the trade-unionist idea. But it must go further than this. For the enormous number of members and followers of the trade-unionist movement it must provide a practical education which will meet the exigencies of the coming National Socialist State.
The answer to the third question follows from what has been already said.
The National Socialist Trades Union is not an instrument for class warfare, but a representative organ of the various occupations and callings. The National Socialist State recognizes no 'classes'. But, under the political aspect, it recognizes only citizens with absolutely equal rights and equal obligations corresponding thereto. And, side by side with these, it recognizes subjects of the State who have no political rights whatsoever.
According to the National Socialist concept, it is not the task of the trades union to band together certain men within the national community and thus gradually transform these men into a class, so as to use them in a conflict against other groups similarly organized within the national community. We certainly cannot assign this task to the trades union as such. This was the task assigned to it the moment it became a fighting weapon in the hands of the Marxists. The trades union is not naturally an instrument of class warfare; but the Marxists transformed it into an instrument for use in their own class struggle. They created the economic weapon which the international Jew uses for the purpose of destroying the economic foundations of free and independent national States, for ruining their national industry and trade and thereby enslaving free nations to serve Jewish world-finance, which transcends all State boundaries.
In contradistinction to this, the National Socialist Trades Union must organize definite groups and those who participate in the economic life of the nation and thus enhance the security of the national economic system itself, reinforcing it by the elimination of all those anomalies which ultimately exercise a destructive influence on the social body of the nation, damaging the vital forces of the national community, prejudicing the welfare of the State and, by no means as a last consequence, bringing evil and destruction on economic life itself.
Therefore in the hands of the National Socialist Trades Union the strike is not an instrument for disturbing and dislocating the national production, but for increasing it and making it run smoothly, by fighting against all those annoyances which by reason of their unsocial character hinder efficiency in business and thereby hamper the existence of the whole nation. For individual efficiency stands always in casual relation to the general social and juridical position of the individual in the economic process. Individual efficiency is also the sole root of the conviction that the economic prosperity of the nation must necessarily redound to the benefit of the individual citizen.
The National Socialist employee will have to recognize the fact that the economic prosperity of the nation brings with it his own material happiness.
The National Socialist employer must recognize that the happiness and contentment of his employees are necessary pre-requisites for the existence and development of his own economic prosperity.
National Socialist workers and employers are both together the delegates and mandatories of the whole national community. The large measure of personal freedom which is accorded to them for their activities must be explained by the fact that experience has shown that the productive powers of the individual are more enhanced by being accorded a generous measure of freedom than by coercion from above. Moreover, by according this freedom we give free play to the natural process of selection which brings forward the ablest and most capable and most industrious. For the National Socialist Trades Union, therefore, the strike is a means that may, and indeed must, be resorted to as long as there is not a National Socialist State yet. But when that State is established it will, as a matter of course, abolish the mass struggle between the two great groups made up of employers and employees respectively, a struggle which has always resulted in lessening the national production and injuring the national community. In place of this struggle, the National Socialist State will take over the task of caring for and defending the rights of all parties concerned. It will be the duty of the Economic Chamber itself to keep the national economic system in smooth working order and to remove whatever defects or errors it may suffer from. Questions that are now fought over through a quarrel that involves millions of people will then be settled in the Representative Chambers of Trades and Professions and in the Central Economic Parliament. Thus employers and employees will no longer find themselves drawn into a mutual conflict over wages and hours of work, always to the detriment of their mutual interests. But they will solve these problems together on a higher plane, where the welfare of the national community and of the State will be as a shining ideal to throw light on all their negotiations.
Here again, as everywhere else, the inflexible principle must be observed, that the interests of the country must come before party interests.
The task of the National Socialist Trades Union will be to educate and prepare its members to conform to these ideals. That task may be stated as follows: All must work together for the maintenance and security of our people and the People's State, each one according to the abilities and powers with which Nature has endowed him and which have been developed and trained by the national community.
Our fourth question was: How shall we establish trades unions for such tasks and aims? That is far more difficult to answer.
Generally speaking, it is easier to establish something in new territory than in old territory which already has its established institutions. In a district where there is no existing business of a special character one can easily establish a new business of this character. But it is more difficult if the same kind of enterprise already exists and it is most difficult of all when the conditions are such that only one enterprise of this kind can prosper. For here the promoters of the new enterprise find themselves confronted not only with the problem of introducing their own business but also that of how to bring about the destruction of the other business already existing in the district, so that the new enterprise may be able to exist.
It would be senseless to have a National Socialist Trades Union side by side with other trades unions. For this Trades Union must be thoroughly imbued with a feeling for the ideological nature of its task and of the resulting obligation not to tolerate other similar or hostile institutions. It must also insist that itself alone is necessary, to the exclusion of all the rest. It can come to no arrangement and no compromise with kindred tendencies but must assert its own absolute and exclusive right.
There were two ways which might lead to such a development:
(1) We could establish our Trades Union and then gradually take up the fight against the Marxist International Trades Union.
(2) Or we could enter the Marxist Trades Union and inculcate a new spirit in it, with the idea of transforming it into an instrument in the service of the new ideal.
The first way was not advisable, by reason of the fact that our financial situation was still the cause of much worry to us at that time and our resources were quite slender. The effects of the inflation were steadily spreading and made the particular situation still more difficult for us, because in those years one could scarcely speak of any material help which the trades unions could extend to their members. From this point of view, there was no reason why the individual worker should pay his dues to the union. Even the Marxist unions then existing were already on the point of collapse until, as the result of Herr Cuno's enlightened Ruhr policy, millions were suddenly poured into their coffers. This so-called 'national' Chancellor of the Reich should go down in history as the Redeemer of the Marxist trades unions.
We could not count on similar financial facilities. And nobody could be induced to enter a new Trades Union which, on account of its financial weakness, could not offer him the slightest material benefit. On the other hand, I felt bound absolutely to guard against the creation of such an organization which would only be a shelter for shirkers of the more or less intellectual type.
At that time the question of personnel played the most important role. I did not have a single man whom I might call upon to carry out this important task. Whoever could have succeeded at that time in overthrowing the Marxist unions to make way for the triumph of the National Socialist corporative idea, which would then take the place of the ruinous class warfare – such a person would be fit to rank with the very greatest men our nation has produced and his bust should be installed in the Valhalla at Regensburg for the admiration of posterity.
But I knew of no person who could qualify for such a pedestal.
In this connection we must not be led astray by the fact that the international trades unions are conducted by men of only mediocre significance, for when those unions were founded there was nothing else of a similar kind already in existence. To-day the National Socialist Movement must fight against a monster organization which has existed for a long time, rests on gigantic foundations and is carefully constructed even in the smallest details. An assailant must always exercise more intelligence than the defender, if he is to overthrow the latter. The Marxist trade-unionist citadel may be governed today by mediocre leaders, but it cannot be taken by assault except through the dauntless energy and genius of a superior leader on the other side. If such a leader cannot be found it is futile to struggle with Fate and even more foolish to try to overthrow the existing state of things without being able to construct a better in its place.
Here one must apply the maxim that in life it is often better to allow something to go by the board rather than try to half do it or do it badly, owing to a lack of suitable means.
To this we must add another consideration, which is not at all of a demagogic character. At that time I had, and I still have today, a firmly rooted conviction that when one is engaged in a great ideological struggle in the political field it would be a grave mistake to mix up economic questions with this struggle in its earlier stages. This applies particularly to our German people. For if such were to happen in their case the economic struggle would immediately distract the energy necessary for the political fight. Once the people are brought to believe that they can buy a little house with their savings they will devote themselves to the task of increasing their savings and no spare time will be left to them for the political struggle against those who, in one way or another, will one day secure possession of the pennies that have been saved. Instead of participating in the political conflict on behalf of the opinions and convictions which they have been brought to accept they will now go further with their 'settlement' idea and in the end they will find themselves for the most part sitting on the ground amidst all the stools.
To-day the National Socialist Movement is at the beginning of its struggle. In great part it must first of all shape and develop its ideals. It must employ every ounce of its energy in the struggle to have its great ideal accepted, and the success of this effort is not conceivable unless the combined energies of the movement be entirely at the service of this struggle.
To-day we have a classical example of how the active strength of a people becomes paralysed when that people is too much taken up with purely economic problems.
The Revolution which took place in November 1918 was not made by the trades unions, but it was carried out in spite of them. And the people of Germany did not wage any political fight for the future of their country because they thought that the future could be sufficiently secured by constructive work in the economic field.
We must learn a lesson from this experience, because in our case the same thing must happen under the same circumstances. The more the combined strength of our movement is concentrated in the political struggle, the more confidently may we count on being successful along our whole front. But if we busy ourselves prematurely with trade unionist problems, settlement problems, etc., it will be to the disadvantage of our own cause, taken as a whole. For, though these problems may be important, they cannot be solved in an adequate manner until we have political power in our hand and are able to use it in the service of this idea. Until that day comes these problems can have only a paralysing effect on the movement. And if it takes them up too soon they will only be a hindrance in the effort to attain its own ideological aims. It may then easily happen that trade unionist considerations will control the political direction of the movement, instead of the ideological aims of the movement directing the way that the trades unions are to take.
The movement and the nation can derive advantage from a National Socialist trade unionist organization only if the latter be so thoroughly inspired by National Socialist ideas that it runs no danger of falling into step behind the Marxist movement. For a National Socialist Trades Union which would consider itself only as a competitor against the Marxist unions would be worse than none. It must declare war against the Marxist Trades Union, not only as an organization but, above all, as an idea. It must declare itself hostile to the idea of class and class warfare and, in place of this, it must declare itself as the defender of the various occupational and professional interests of the German people.
Considered from all these points of view it was not then advisable, nor is it yet advisable, to think of founding our own Trades Union. That seemed clear to me, at least until somebody appeared who was obviously called by fate to solve this particular problem.
Therefore there remained only two possible ways. Either to recommend our own party members to leave the trades unions in which they were enrolled or to remain in them for the moment, with the idea of causing as much destruction in them as possible.
In general, I recommended the latter alternative.
Especially in the year 1922-23 we could easily do that. For, during the period of inflation, the financial advantages which might be reaped from a trades union organization would be negligible, because we could expect to enroll only a few members owing to the undeveloped condition of our movement. The damage which might result from such a policy was all the greater because its bitterest critics and opponents were to be found among the followers of the National Socialist Party.
I had already entirely discountenanced all experiments which were destined from the very beginning to be unsuccessful. I would have considered it criminal to run the risk of depriving a worker of his scant earnings in order to help an organization which, according to my inner conviction, could not promise real advantages to its members.
Should a new political party fade out of existence one day nobody would be injured thereby and some would have profited, but none would have a right to complain. For what each individual contributes to a political movement is given with the idea that it may ultimately come to nothing. But the man who pays his dues to a trade union has the right to expect some guarantee in return. If this is not done, then the directors of such a trade union are swindlers or at least careless people who ought to be brought to a sense of their responsibilities.
We took all these viewpoints into consideration before making our decision in 1922. Others thought otherwise and founded trades unions. They upbraided us for being short-sighted and failing to see into the future. But it did not take long for these organizations to disappear and the result was what would have happened in our own case. But the difference was that we should have deceived neither ourselves nor those who believed in us.


Chapter XIII: German Alliance Policy after the War

The erratic manner in which the foreign affairs of the Reich were conducted was due to a lack of sound guiding principles for the formation of practical and useful alliances. Not only was this state of affairs continued after the Revolution, but it became even worse.
For the confused state of our political ideas in general before the War may be looked upon as the chief cause of our defective statesmanship; but in the post-War period this cause must be attributed to a lack of honest intentions. It was natural that those parties who had fully achieved their destructive purpose by means of the Revolution should feel that it would not serve their interests if a policy of alliances were adopted which must ultimately result in the restoration of a free German State. A development in this direction would not be in conformity with the purposes of the November crime. It would have interrupted and indeed put an end to the internationalization of German national economy and German Labour. But what was feared most of all was that a successful effort to make the Reich independent of foreign countries might have an influence in domestic politics which one day would turn out disastrous for those who now hold supreme power in the government of the Reich. One cannot imagine the revival of a nation unless that revival be preceded by a process of nationalization. Conversely, every important success in the field of foreign politics must call forth a favourable reaction at home. Experience proves that every struggle for liberty increases the national sentiment and national self-consciousness and therewith gives rise to a keener sensibility towards anti-national elements and tendencies. A state of things, and persons also, that may be tolerated and even pass unnoticed in times of peace will not only become the object of aversion when national enthusiasm is aroused but will even provoke positive opposition, which frequently turns out disastrous for them. In this connection we may recall the spy-scare that became prevalent when the war broke out, when human passion suddenly manifested itself to such a heightened degree as to lead to the most brutal persecutions, often without any justifiable grounds, although everybody knew that the danger resulting from spies is greater during the long periods of peace; but, for obvious reasons, they do not then attract a similar amount of public attention. For this reason the subtle instinct of the State parasites who came to the surface of the national body through the November happenings makes them feel at once that a policy of alliances which would restore the freedom of our people and awaken national sentiment might possibly ruin their own criminal existence.
Thus we may explain the fact that since 1918 the men who have held the reins of government adopted an entirely negative attitude towards foreign affairs and that the business of the State has been almost constantly conducted in a systematic way against the interests of the German nation. For that which at first sight seemed a matter of chance proved, on closer examination, to be a logical advance along the road which was first publicly entered upon by the November Revolution of 1918.
Undoubtedly a distinction ought to be made between (1) the responsible administrators of our affairs of State, or rather those who ought to be responsible; (2) the average run of our parliamentary politicasters, and (3) the masses of our people, whose sheepish docility corresponds to their want of intelligence.
The first know what they want. The second fall into line with them, either because they have been already schooled in what is afoot or because they have not the courage to take an uncompromising stand against a course which they know and feel to be detrimental. The third just submit to it because they are too stupid to understand.
While the German National Socialist Labour Party was only a small and practically unknown society, problems of foreign policy could have only a secondary importance in the eyes of many of its members. This was the case especially because our movement has always proclaimed the principle, and must proclaim it, that the freedom of the country in its foreign relations is not a gift that will be bestowed upon us by Heaven or by any earthly Powers, but can only be the fruit of a development of our inner forces. We must first root out the causes which led to our collapse and we must eliminate all those who are profiting by that collapse. Then we shall be in a position to take up the fight for the restoration of our freedom in the management of our foreign relations.
It will be easily understood therefore why we did not attach so much importance to foreign affairs during the early stages of our young movement, but preferred to concentrate on the problem of internal reform.
But when the small and insignificant society expanded and finally grew too large for its first framework, the young organization assumed the importance of a great association and we then felt it incumbent on us to take a definite stand on problems regarding the development of a foreign policy. It was necessary to lay down the main lines of action which would not only be in accord with the fundamental ideas of our Weltanschhauung but would actually be an expansion of it in the practical world of foreign affairs.
Just because our people have had no political education in matters concerning our relations abroad, it was necessary to teach the leaders in the various sections of our movement, and also the masses of the people, the chief principles which ought to guide the development of our foreign relations. That was one of the first tasks to be accomplished in order to prepare the ground for the practical carrying out of a foreign policy which would win back the independence of the nation in managing its external affairs and thus restore the real sovereignty of the Reich.
The fundamental and guiding principles which we must always bear in mind when studying this question is that foreign policy is only a means to an end and that the sole end to be pursued is the welfare of our own people. Every problem in foreign politics must be considered from this point of view, and this point of view alone. Shall such and such a solution prove advantageous to our people now or in the future, or will it injure their interests? That is the question.
This is the sole preoccupation that must occupy our minds in dealing with a question. Party politics, religious considerations, humanitarian ideals – all such and all other preoccupations must absolutely give way to this.
Before the War the purpose to which German foreign policy should have been devoted was to assure the supply of material necessities for the maintenance of our people and their children. And the way should have been prepared which would lead to this goal. Alliances should have been established which would have proved beneficial to us from this point of view and would have brought us the necessary auxiliary support. The task to be accomplished is the same today, but with this difference: In pre-War times it was a question of caring for the maintenance of the German people, backed up by the power which a strong and independent State then possessed, but our task today is to make our nation powerful once again by re-establishing a strong and independent State. The re-establishment of such a State is the prerequisite and necessary condition which must be fulfilled in order that we may be able subsequently to put into practice a foreign policy which will serve to guarantee the existence of our people in the future, fulfilling their needs and furnishing them with those necessities of life which they lack. In other words, the aim which Germany ought to pursue today in her foreign policy is to prepare the way for the recovery of her liberty tomorrow. In this connection there is a fundamental principle which we must keep steadily before our minds. It is this: The possibility of winning back the independence of a nation is not absolutely bound up with the question of territorial reintegration but it will suffice if a small remnant, no matter how small, of this nation and State will exist, provided it possesses the necessary independence to become not only the vehicle of' the common spirit of the whole people but also to prepare the way for the military fight to reconquer the nation's liberty.
When a people who amount to a hundred million souls tolerate the yoke of common slavery in order to prevent the territory belonging to their State from being broken up and divided, that is worse than if such a State and such a people were dismembered while one fragment still retained its complete independence. Of course, the natural proviso here is that this fragment must be inspired with a consciousness of the solemn duty that devolves upon it, not only to proclaim persistently the inviolable unity of its spiritual and cultural life with that of its detached members but also to prepare the means that are necessary for the military conflict which will finally liberate and re-unite the fragments that are suffering under oppression.
One must also bear in mind the fact that the restoration of lost districts which were formerly parts of the State, both ethnically and politically, must in the first instance be a question of winning back political power and independence for the motherland itself, and that in such cases the special interests of the lost districts must be uncompromisingly regarded as a matter of secondary importance in the face of the one main task, which is to win back the freedom of the central territory. For the detached and oppressed fragments of a nation or an imperial province cannot achieve their liberation through the expression of yearnings and protests on the part of the oppressed and abandoned, but only when the portion which has more or less retained its sovereign independence can resort to the use of force for the purpose of reconquering those territories that once belonged to the common fatherland.
Therefore, in order to reconquer lost territories the first condition to be fulfilled is to work energetically for the increased welfare and reinforcement of the strength of that portion of the State which has remained over after the partition. Thus the unquenchable yearning which slumbers in the hearts of the people must be awakened and restrengthened by bringing new forces to its aid, so that when the hour comes all will be devoted to the one purpose of liberating and uniting the whole people. Therefore, the interests of the separated territories must be subordinated to the one purpose. That one purpose must aim at obtaining for the central remaining portion such a measure of power and might that will enable it to enforce its will on the hostile will of the victor and thus redress the wrong. For flaming protests will not restore the oppressed territories to the bosom of a common Reich. That can be done only through the might of the sword.
The forging of this sword is a work that has to be done through the domestic policy which must be adopted by a national government. To see that the work of forging these arms is assured, and to recruit the men who will bear them, that is the task of the foreign policy.
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tanith
post Feb 20 2011, 02:21 PM
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In the first volume of this book I discussed the inadequacy of our policy of alliances before the War. There were four possible ways to secure the necessary foodstuffs for the maintenance of our people. Of these ways the fourth, which was the most unfavourable, was chosen. Instead of a sound policy of territorial expansion in Europe, our rulers embarked on a policy of colonial and trade expansion. That policy was all the more mistaken inasmuch as they presumed that in this way the danger of an armed conflict would be averted. The result of the attempt to sit on many stools at the same time might have been foreseen. It let us fall to the ground in the midst of them all. And the World War was only the last reckoning presented to the Reich to pay for the failure of its foreign policy.
The right way that should have been taken in those days was the third way I indicated: namely, to increase the strength of the Reich as a Continental Power by the acquisition of new territory in Europe. And at the same time a further expansion, through the subsequent acquisition of colonial territory, might thus be brought within the range of practical politics. Of course, this policy could not have been carried through except in alliance with England, or by devoting such abnormal efforts to the increase of military force and armament that, for forty or fifty years, all cultural undertakings would have to be completely relegated to the background. This responsibility might very well have been undertaken. The cultural importance of a nation is almost always dependent on its political freedom and independence. Political freedom is a prerequisite condition for the existence, or rather the creation, of great cultural undertakings. Accordingly no sacrifice can be too great when there is question of securing the political freedom of a nation. What might have to be deducted from the budget expenses for cultural purposes, in order to meet abnormal demands for increasing the military power of the State, can be generously paid back later on. Indeed, it may be said that after a State has concentrated all its resources in one effort for the purpose of securing its political independence a certain period of ease and renewed equilibrium sets in. And it often happens that the cultural spirit of the nation, which had been heretofore cramped and confined, now suddenly blooms forth. Thus Greece experienced the great Periclean era after the miseries it had suffered during the Persian Wars. And the Roman Republic turned its energies to the cultivation of a higher civilization when it was freed from the stress and worry of the Punic Wars.
Of course, it could not be expected that a parliamentary majority of feckless and stupid people would be capable of deciding on such a resolute policy for the absolute subordination of all other national interests to the one sole task of preparing for a future conflict of arms which would result in establishing the security of the State. The father of Frederick the Great sacrificed everything in order to be ready for that conflict; but the fathers of our absurd parliamentarian democracy, with the Jewish hall-mark, could not do it.
That is why, in pre-War times, the military preparation necessary to enable us to conquer new territory in Europe was only very mediocre, so that it was difficult to obtain the support of really helpful allies.
Those who directed our foreign affairs would not entertain even the idea of systematically preparing for war. They rejected every plan for the acquisition of territory in Europe. And by preferring a policy of colonial and trade expansion, they sacrificed the alliance with England, which was then possible. At the same time they neglected to seek the support of Russia, which would have been a logical proceeding. Finally they stumbled into the World War, abandoned by all except the ill-starred Habsburgs.
The characteristic of our present foreign policy is that it follows no discernible or even intelligible lines of action. Whereas before the War a mistake was made in taking the fourth way that I have mentioned, and this was pursued only in a halfhearted manner, since the Revolution not even the sharpest eye can detect any way that is being followed. Even more than before the War, there is absolutely no such thing as a systematic plan, except the systematic attempts that are made to destroy the last possibility of a national revival.
If we make an impartial examination of the situation existing in Europe today as far as concerns the relation of the various Powers to one another, we shall arrive at the following results:
For the past three hundred years the history of our Continent has been definitely determined by England's efforts to keep the European States opposed to one another in an equilibrium of forces, thus assuring the necessary protection of her own rear while she pursued the great aims of British world-policy.
The traditional tendency of British diplomacy ever since the reign of Queen Elizabeth has been to employ systematically every possible means to prevent any one Power from attaining a preponderant position over the other European Powers and, if necessary, to break that preponderance by means of armed intervention. The only parallel to this has been the tradition of the Prussian Army. England has made use of various forces to carry out its purpose, choosing them according to the actual situation or the task to be faced; but the will and determination to use them has always been the same. The more difficult England's position became in the course of history the more the British Imperial Government considered it necessary to maintain a condition of political paralysis among the various European States, as a result of their mutual rivalries. When the North American colonies obtained their political independence it became still more necessary for England to use every effort to establish and maintain the defence of her flank in Europe. In accordance with this policy she reduced Spain and the Netherlands to the position of inferior naval Powers. Having accomplished this, England concentrated all her forces against the increasing strength of France, until she brought about the downfall of Napoleon Bonaparte and therewith destroyed the military hegemony of France, which was the most dangerous rival that England had to fear.
The change of attitude in British statesmanship towards Germany took place only very slowly, not only because the German nation did not represent an obvious danger for England as long as it lacked national unification, but also because public opinion in England, which had been directed to other quarters by a system of propaganda that had been carried out for a long time, could be turned to a new direction only by slow degrees. In order to reach the proposed ends the calmly reflecting statesman had to bow to popular sentiment, which is the most powerful motive-force and is at the same time the most lasting in its energy. When the statesman has attained one of his ends, he must immediately turn his thoughts to others; but only by degrees and the slow work of propaganda can the sentiment of the masses be shaped into an instrument for the attainment of the new aims which their leaders have decided on.
As early as 1870-71 England had decided on the new stand it would take. On certain occasions minor oscillations in that policy were caused by the growing influence of America in the commercial markets of the world and also by the increasing political power of Russia; but, unfortunately, Germany did not take advantage of these and, therefore, the original tendency of British diplomacy was only reinforced.
England looked upon Germany as a Power which was of world importance commercially and politically and which, partly because of its enormous industrial development, assumed such threatening proportions that the two countries already contended against one another in the same sphere and with equal energy. The so-called peaceful conquest of the world by commercial enterprise, which, in the eyes of those who governed our public affairs at that time, represented the highest peak of human wisdom, was just the thing that led English statesmen to adopt a policy of resistance. That this resistance assumed the form of an organized aggression on a vast scale was in full conformity with a type of statesmanship which did not aim at the maintenance of a dubious world peace but aimed at the consolidation of British world-hegemony. In carrying out this policy, England allied herself with those countries which had a definite military importance. And that was in keeping with her traditional caution in estimating the power of her adversary and also in recognizing her own temporary weakness. That line of conduct cannot be called unscrupulous; because such a comprehensive organization for war purposes must not be judged from the heroic point of view but from that of expediency. The object of a diplomatic policy must not be to see that a nation goes down heroically but rather that it survives in a practical way. Hence every road that leads to this goal is opportune and the failure to take it must be looked upon as a criminal neglect of duty.
When the German Revolution took place England's fears of a German world hegemony came to a satisfactory end.
From that time it was not an English interest to see Germany totally cancelled from the geographic map of Europe. On the contrary, the astounding collapse which took place in November 1918 found British diplomacy confronted with a situation which at first appeared untenable.
For four-and-a-half years the British Empire had fought to break the presumed preponderance of a Continental Power. A sudden collapse now happened which removed this Power from the foreground of European affairs. That collapse disclosed itself finally in the lack of even the primordial instinct of self-preservation, so that European equilibrium was destroyed within forty-eight hours. Germany was annihilated and France became the first political Power on the Continent of Europe.
The tremendous propaganda which was carried on during this war for the purpose of encouraging the British public to stick it out to the end aroused all the primitive instincts and passions of the populace and was bound eventually to hang as a leaden weight on the decisions of British statesmen. With the colonial, economical and commercial destruction of Germany, England's war aims were attained. Whatever went beyond those aims was an obstacle to the furtherance of British interests. Only the enemies of England could profit by the disappearance of Germany as a Great Continental Power in Europe. In November 1918, however, and up to the summer of 1919, it was not possible for England to change its diplomatic attitude; because during the long war it had appealed, more than it had ever done before, to the feelings of the populace. In view of the feeling prevalent among its own people, England could not change its foreign policy; and another reason which made that impossible was the military strength to which other European Powers had now attained. France had taken the direction of peace negotiations into her own hands and could impose her law upon the others. During those months of negotiations and bargaining the only Power that could have altered the course which things were taking was Germany herself; but Germany was torn asunder by a civil war, and her so-called statesmen had declared themselves ready to accept any and every dictate imposed on them.
Now, in the comity of nations, when one nation loses its instinct for self-preservation and ceases to be an active member it sinks to the level of an enslaved nation and its territory will have to suffer the fate of a colony.
To prevent the power of France from becoming too great, the only form which English negotiations could take was that of participating in France's lust for aggrandizement.
As a matter of fact, England did not attain the ends for which she went to war. Not only did it turn out impossible to prevent a Continental Power from obtaining a preponderance over the ratio of strength in the Continental State system of Europe, but a large measure of preponderance had been obtained and firmly established.
In 1914 Germany, considered as a military State, was wedged in between two countries, one of which had equal military forces at its disposal and the other had greater military resources. Then there was England's overwhelming supremacy at sea. France and Russia alone hindered and opposed the excessive aggrandizement of Germany. The unfavourable geographical situation of the Reich, from the military point of view, might be looked upon as another coefficient of security against an exaggerated increase of German power. From the naval point of view, the configuration of the coast-line was unfavourable in case of a conflict with England. And though the maritime frontier was short and cramped, the land frontier was widely extended and open.
France's position is different today. It is the first military Power without a serious rival on the Continent. It is almost entirely protected by its southern frontier against Spain and Italy. Against Germany it is safeguarded by the prostrate condition of our country. A long stretch of its coast-line faces the vital nervous system of the British Empire. Not only could French aeroplanes and long-range batteries attack the vital centres of the British system, but submarines can threaten the great British commercial routes. A submarine campaign based on France's long Atlantic coast and on the European and North African coasts of the Mediterranean would have disastrous consequences for England.
Thus the political results of the war to prevent the development of German power was the creation of a French hegemony on the Continent. The military result was the consolidation of France as the first Continental Power and the recognition of American equality on the sea. The economic result was the cession of great spheres of British interests to her former allies and associates.
The Balkanization of Europe, up to a certain degree, was desirable and indeed necessary in the light of the traditional policy of Great Britain, just as France desired the Balkanization of Germany.
What England has always desired, and will continue to desire, is to prevent any one Continental Power in Europe from attaining a position of world importance. Therefore England wishes to maintain a definite equilibrium of forces among the European States – for this equilibrium seems a necessary condition of England's world-hegemony.
What France has always desired, and will continue to desire, is to prevent Germany from becoming a homogeneous Power. Therefore France wants to maintain a system of small German States whose forces would balance one another and over which there should be no central government. Then, by acquiring possession of the left bank of the Rhine, she would have fulfilled the pre-requisite conditions for the establishment and security of her hegemony in Europe.
The final aims of French diplomacy must be in perpetual opposition to the final tendencies of British statesmanship.
Taking these considerations as a starting-point, anyone who investigates the possibilities that exist for Germany to find allies must come to the conclusion that there remains no other way of forming an alliance except to approach England. The consequences of England's war policy were and are disastrous for Germany. However, we cannot close our eyes to the fact that, as things stand today, the necessary interests of England no longer demand the destruction of Germany. On the contrary, British diplomacy must tend more and more, from year to year, towards curbing France's unbridled lust after hegemony. Now, a policy of alliances cannot be pursued by bearing past grievances in mind, but it can be rendered fruitful by taking account of past experiences. Experience should have taught us that alliances formed for negative purposes suffer from intrinsic weakness. The destinies of nations can be welded together only under the prospect of a common success, of common gain and conquest, in short, a common extension of power for both contracting parties.
The ignorance of our people on questions of foreign politics is clearly demonstrated by the reports in the daily Press which talk about "friendship towards Germany" on the part of one or the other foreign statesman, whereby this professed friendship is taken as a special guarantee that such persons will champion a policy that will be advantageous to our people. That kind of talk is absurd to an incredible degree. It means speculating on the unparalleled simplicity of the average German philistine when he comes to talking politics. There is not any British, American, or Italian statesman who could ever be described as 'pro-German'. Every Englishman must naturally be British first of all. The same is true of every American. And no Italian statesman would be prepared to adopt a policy that was not pro-Italian. Therefore, anyone who expects to form alliances with foreign nations on the basis of a pro-German feeling among the statesmen of other countries is either an ass or a deceiver. The necessary condition for linking together the destinies of nations is never mutual esteem or mutual sympathy, but rather the prospect of advantages accruing to the contracting parties. It is true that a British statesman will always follow a pro-British and not a pro-German policy; but it is also true that certain definite interests involved in this pro-British policy may coincide on various grounds with German interests. Naturally that can be so only to a certain degree and the situation may one day be completely reversed. But the art of statesmanship is shown when at certain periods there is question of reaching a certain end and when allies are found who must take the same road in order to defend their own interests.
The practical application of these principles at the present time must depend on the answer given to the following questions: What States are not vitally interested in the fact that, by the complete abolition of a German Central Europe, the economic and military power of France has reached a position of absolute hegemony? Which are the States that, in consideration of the conditions which are essential to their own existence and in view of the tradition that has hitherto been followed in conducting their foreign policy, envisage such a development as a menace to their own future?
Finally, we must be quite clear on the following point: France is and will remain the implacable enemy of Germany. It does not matter what Governments have ruled or will rule in France, whether Bourbon or Jacobin, Napoleonic or Bourgeois-Democratic, Clerical Republican or Red Bolshevik, their foreign policy will always be directed towards acquiring possession of the Rhine frontier and consolidating France's position on this river by disuniting and dismembering Germany.
England did not want Germany to be a world Power. France desired that there should be no Power called Germany. Therefore there was a very essential difference. To-day we are not fighting for our position as a World-Power but only for the existence of our country, for national unity and the daily bread of our children. Taking this point of view into consideration, only two States remain to us as possible allies in Europe - England and Italy.
England is not pleased to see a France on whose military power there is no check in Europe, so that one day she might undertake the support of a policy which in some way or other might come into conflict with British interests. Nor can England be pleased to see France in possession of such enormous coal and iron mines in Western Europe as would make it possible for her one day to play a role in world-commerce which might threaten danger to British interests. Moreover, England can never be pleased to see a France whose political position on the Continent, owing to the dismemberment of the rest of Europe, seems so absolutely assured that she is not only able to resume a French world-policy on great lines but would even find herself compelled to do so. The bombs which were once dropped by the Zeppelins might be multiplied by the thousand every night. The military predominance of France is a weight that presses heavily on the hearts of the World Empire over which Great Britain rules.
Nor can Italy desire, nor will she desire, any further strengthening of France's power in Europe. The future of Italy will be conditioned by the development of events in the Mediterranean and by the political situation in the area surrounding that sea. The reason that led Italy into the War was not a desire to contribute towards the aggrandizement of France but rather to deal her hated Adriatic rival a mortal blow. Any further increase of France's power on the Continent would hamper the development of Italy's future, and Italy does not deceive herself by thinking that racial kindred between the nations will in any way eliminate rivalries.
Serious and impartial consideration proves that it is these two States, Great Britain and Italy, whose natural interests not only do not contrast with the conditions essential to the existence of the German nation but are identical with them, to a certain extent.




But when we consider the possibilities of alliances we must be careful not to lose sight of three factors. The first factor concerns ourselves; the other two concern the two States I have mentioned.
Is it at all possible to conclude an alliance with Germany as it is today? Can a Power which would enter into an alliance for the purpose of securing assistance in an effort to carry out its own offensive aims – can such a Power form an alliance with a State whose rulers have for years long presented a spectacle of deplorable incompetence and pacifist cowardice and where the majority of the people, blinded by democratic and Marxist teachings, betray the interests of their own people and country in a manner that cries to Heaven for vengeance? As things stand today, can any Power hope to establish useful relations and hope to fight together for the furtherance of their common interests with this State which manifestly has neither the will nor the courage to move a finger even in the defence of its bare existence? Take the case of a Power for which an alliance must be much more than a pact to guarantee a state of slow decomposition, such as happened with the old and disastrous Triple Alliance. Can such a Power associate itself for life or death with a State whose most characteristic signs of activity consist of a rampant servility in external relations and a scandalous repression of the national spirit at home? Can such a Power be associated with a State in which there is nothing of greatness, because its whole policy does not deserve it? Or can alliances be made with Governments which are in the hands of men who are despised by their own fellow-citizens and consequently are not respected abroad?
No. A self-respecting Power which expects something more from alliances than commissions for greedy Parliamentarians will not and cannot enter into an alliance with our present-day Germany. Our present inability to form alliances furnishes the principle and most solid basis for the combined action of the enemies who are robbing us. Because Germany does not defend itself in any other way except by the flamboyant protests of our parliamentarian elect, there is no reason why the rest of the world should take up the fight in our defence. And God does not follow the principle of granting freedom to a nation of cowards, despite all the implications of our 'patriotic' associations. Therefore, for those States which have not a direct interest in our annihilation no other course remains open except to participate in France's campaign of plunder, at least to make it impossible for the strength of France to be exclusively aggrandized thereby.
In the second place, we must not forget that among the nations which were formerly our enemies mass-propaganda has turned the opinions and feelings of large sections of the population in a fixed direction. When for years long a foreign nation has been presented to the public as a horde of 'Huns', 'Robbers', 'Vandals', etc., they cannot suddenly be presented as something different, and the enemy of yesterday cannot be recommended as the ally of tomorrow.
But the third factor deserves greater attention, since it is of essential importance for establishing future alliances in Europe.
From the political point of view it is not in the interests of Great Britain that Germany should be ruined even still more, but such a proceeding would be very much in the interests of the international money-markets manipulated by the Jew. The cleavage between the official, or rather traditional, British statesmanship and the controlling influence of the Jew on the money-markets is nowhere so clearly manifested as in the various attitudes taken towards problems of British foreign policy. Contrary to the interests and welfare of the British State, Jewish finance demands not only the absolute economic destruction of Germany but its complete political enslavement. The internationalization of our German economic system, that is to say, the transference of our productive forces to the control of Jewish international finance, can be completely carried out only in a State that has been politically Bolshevized. But the Marxist fighting forces, commanded by international and Jewish stock-exchange capital, cannot finally smash the national resistance in Germany without friendly help from outside. For this purpose French armies would first have to invade and overcome the territory of the German Reich until a state of international chaos would set in, and then the country would have to succumb to Bolshevik storm troops in the service of Jewish international finance.
Hence it is that at the present time the Jew is the great agitator for the complete destruction of Germany. Whenever we read of attacks against Germany taking place in any part of the world the Jew is always the instigator. In peace-time, as well as during the War, the Jewish-Marxist stock-exchange Press systematically stirred up hatred against Germany, until one State after another abandoned its neutrality and placed itself at the service of the world coalition, even against the real interests of its own people.
The Jewish way of reasoning thus becomes quite clear. The Bolshevization of Germany, that is to say, the extermination of the patriotic and national German intellectuals, thus making it possible to force German Labour to bear the yoke of international Jewish finance – that is only the overture to the movement for expanding Jewish power on a wider scale and finally subjugating the world to its rule. As has so often happened in history, Germany is the chief pivot of this formidable struggle. If our people and our State should fall victims to these oppressors of the nations, lusting after blood and money, the whole earth would become the prey of that hydra. Should Germany be freed from its grip, a great menace for the nations of the world would thereby be eliminated.
It is certain that Jewry uses all its subterranean activities not only for the purpose of keeping alive old national enmities against Germany but even to spread them farther and render them more acute wherever possible. It is no less certain that these activities are only very partially in keeping with the true interests of the nations among whose people the poison is spread. As a general principle, Jewry carries on its campaign in the various countries by the use of arguments that are best calculated to appeal to the mentality of the respective nations and are most likely to produce the desired results; for Jewry knows what the public feeling is in each country. Our national stock has been so much adulterated by the mixture of alien elements that, in its fight for power, Jewry can make use of the more or less 'cosmopolitan' circles which exist among us, inspired by the pacifist and international ideologies. In France they exploit the well-known and accurately estimated chauvinistic spirit. In England they exploit the commercial and world-political outlook. In short, they always work upon the essential characteristics that belong to the mentality of each nation. When they have in this way achieved a decisive influence in the political and economic spheres they can drop the limitations which their former tactics necessitated, now disclosing their real intentions and the ends for which they are fighting. Their work of destruction now goes ahead more quickly, reducing one State after another to a mass of ruins on which they will erect the everlasting and sovereign Jewish Empire.
In England, and in Italy, the contrast between the better kind of solid statesmanship and the policy of the Jewish stock-exchange often becomes strikingly evident.
Only in France there exists today more than ever before a profound accord between the views of the stock-exchange, controlled by the Jews, and the chauvinistic policy pursued by French statesmen. This identity of views constitutes an immense, danger for Germany. And it is just for this reason that France is and will remain by far the most dangerous enemy. The French people, who are becoming more and more obsessed by negroid ideas, represent a threatening menace to the existence of the white race in Europe, because they are bound up with the Jewish campaign for world-domination. For the contamination caused by the influx of negroid blood on the Rhine, in the very heart of Europe, is in accord with the sadist and perverse lust for vengeance on the part of the hereditary enemy of our people, just as it suits the purpose of the cool calculating Jew who would use this means of introducing a process of bastardization in the very centre of the European Continent and, by infecting the white race with the blood of an inferior stock, would destroy the foundations of its independent existence.
France's activities in Europe today, spurred on by the French lust for vengeance and systematically directed by the Jew, are a criminal attack against the life of the white race and will one day arouse against the French people a spirit of vengeance among a generation which will have recognized the original sin of mankind in this racial pollution.
As far as concerns Germany, the danger which France represents involves the duty of relegating all sentiment to a subordinate place and extending the hand to those who are threatened with the same menace and who are not willing to suffer or tolerate France's lust for hegemony.
For a long time yet to come there will be only two Powers in Europe with which it may be possible for Germany to conclude an alliance. These Powers are Great Britain and Italy.
If we take the trouble to cast a glance backwards on the way in which German foreign policy has been conducted since the Revolution we must, in view of the constant and incomprehensible acts of submission on the part. of our governments, either lose heart or become fired with rage and take up the cudgels against such a regime. Their way of acting cannot be attributed to a want of understanding, because what seemed to every thinking man to be inconceivable was accomplished by the leaders of the November parties with their Cyclopean intellects. They bowed to France and begged her favour. Yes, during all these recent years, with the touching simplicity of incorrigible visionaries, they went on their knees to France again and again. They perpetuaily wagged their tails before the Grande Nation. And in each trick-o'-the-loop which the French hangmen performed with his rope they recognized a visible change of feeling. Our real political wire-pullers never shared in this absurd credulity. The idea of establishing a friendship with France was for them only a means of thwarting every attempt on Germany's part to adopt a practical policy of alliances. They had no illusions about French aims or those of the men behind the scenes in France. What induced them to take up such an attitude and to act as if they honestly believed that the fate of Germany could possibly be changed in this way was the cool calculation that if this did not happen our people might take the reins into their own hands and choose another road.
Of course it is difficult for us to propose England as our possible ally in the future. Our Jewish Press has always been adept in concentrating hatred against England particularly. And many of our good German simpletons perch on these branches which the Jews have limed to capture them. They babble about a restoration of German sea power and protest against the robbery of our colonies. Thus they furnish material which the contriving Jew transmits to his clansmen in England, so that it can be used there for purposes of practical propaganda. For our simple-minded bourgeoisie who indulge in politics can take in only little by little the idea that today we have not to fight for 'sea-power' and such things. Even before the War it was absurd to direct the national energies of Germany towards this end without first having secured our position in Europe. Such a hope today reaches that peak of absurdity which may be called criminal in the domain of politics.
Often one becomes really desperate on seeing how the Jewish wire-pullers succeeded in concentrating the attention of the people on things which are only of secondary importance today, They incited the people to demonstrations and protests while at the same time France was tearing our nation asunder bit by bit and systematically removing the very foundations of our national independence.
In this connection I have to think of the Wooden Horse in the riding of which the Jew showed extraordinary skill during these years. I mean South Tyrol.
Yes, South Tyrol. The reason why I take up this question here is just because I want to call to account that shameful canaille who relied on the ignorance and short memories of large sections of our people and stimulated a national indignation which is as foreign to the real character of our parliamentary impostors as the idea of respect for private property is to a magpie.
I should like to state here that I was one of those who, at the time when the fate of South Tyrol was being decided – that is to say, from August 1914 to November 1918 – took my place where that country also could have been effectively defended, namely, in the Army. I did my share in the fighting during those years, not merely to save South Tyrol from being lost but also to save every other German province for the Fatherland.
The parliamentary sharpers did not take part in that combat. The whole canaille played party politics. On the other hand, we carried on the fight in the belief that a victorious issue of the War would enable the German nation to keep South Tyrol also; but the loud-mouthed traitor carried on a seditious agitation against such a victorious issue, until the fighting Siegfried succumbed to the dagger plunged in his back. It was only natural that the inflammatory and hypocritical speeches of the elegantly dressed parliamentarians on the Vienna Rathaus Platz or in front of the Feldherrnhalle in Munich could not save South Tyrol for Germany. That could be done only by the fighting battalions at the Front. Those who broke up that fighting front betrayed South Tyrol, as well as the other districts of Germany.
Anyone who thinks that the South Tyrol question can be solved today by protests and manifestations and processions organized by various associations is either a humbug or merely a German philistine.
In this regard it must be quite clearly understood that we cannot get back the territories we have lost if we depend on solemn imprecations before the throne of the Almighty God or on pious hopes in a League of Nations, but only by the force of arms.
Therefore the only remaining question is: Who is ready to take up arms for the restoration of the lost territories?
As far as concerns myself personally, I can state with a good conscience that I would have courage enough to take part in a campaign for the reconquest of South Tyrol, at the head of parliamentarian storm battalions consisting of parliamentarian gasconaders and all the party leaders, also the various Councillors of State. Only the Devil knows whether I might have the luck of seeing a few shells suddenly burst over this 'burning' demonstration of protest. I think that if a fox were to break into a poultry yard his presence would not provoke such a helter-skelter and rush to cover as we should witness in the band of 'protesters'.
The vilest part of it all is that these talkers themselves do not believe that anything can be achieved in this way. Each one of them knows very well how harmless and ineffective their whole pretence is. They do it only because it is easier now to babble about the restoration of South Tyrol than to fight for its preservation in days gone by.
Each one plays the part that he is best capable of playing in life. In those days we offered our blood. To-day these people are engaged in whetting their tusks.
It is particularly interesting to note today how legitimist circles in Vienna preen themselves on their work for the restoration of South Tyrol. Seven years ago their august and illustrious Dynasty helped, by an act of perjury and treason, to make it possible for the victorious world-coalition to take away South Tyrol. At that time these circles supported the perfidious policy adopted by their Dynasty and did not trouble themselves in the least about the fate of South Tyrol or any other province. Naturally it is easier today to take up the fight for this territory, since the present struggle is waged with 'the weapons of the mind'. Anyhow, it is easier to join in a 'meeting of protestation' and talk yourself hoarse in giving vent to the noble indignation that fills your breast, or stain your finger with the writing of a newspaper article, than to blow up a bridge, for instance, during the occupation of the Ruhr.
The reason why certain circles have made the question of South Tyrol the pivot of German-Italian relations during the past few years is quite evident. Jews and Habsburg legitimists are greatly interested in preventing Germany from pursuing a policy of alliance which might lead one day to the resurgence of a free German fatherland. It is not out of love for South Tyrol that they play this role today – for their policy would turn out detrimental rather than helpful to the interests of that province – but through fear of an agreement being established between Germany and Italy.
A tendency towards lying and calumny lies in the nature of these people, and that explains how they can calmly and brazenly attempt to twist things in such a way as to make it appear that we have 'betrayed' South Tyrol.
There is one clear answer that must be given to these gentlemen. It is this: Tyrol has been betrayed, in the first place, by every German who was sound in limb and body and did not offer himself for service at the Front during 1914–1918 to do his duty towards his country.
In the second place, Tyrol was betrayed by every man who, during those years did not help to reinforce the national spirit and the national powers of resistance, so as to enable the country to carry through the War and keep up the fight to the very end.
In the third place, South Tyrol was betrayed by everyone who took part in the November Revolution, either directly by his act or indirectly by a cowardly toleration of it, and thus broke the sole weapon that could have saved South Tyrol.
In the fourth place, South Tyrol was betrayed by those parties and their adherents who put their signatures to the disgraceful treaties of Versailles and St. Germain.
And so the matter stands, my brave gentlemen, who make your protests only with words.
To-day I am guided by a calm and cool recognition of the fact that the lost territories cannot be won back by the whetted tongues of parliamentary spouters but only by the whetted sword; in other words, through a fight where blood will have to be shed.
Now, I have no hesitations in saying that today, once the die has been cast, it is not only impossible to win back South Tyrol through a war but I should definitely take my stand against such a movement, because I am convinced that it would not be possible to arouse the national enthusiasm of the German people and maintain it in such a way as would be necessary in order to carry through such a war to a successful issue. On the contrary, I believe that if we have to shed German blood once again it would be criminal to do so for the sake of liberating 200,000 Germans, when more than seven million neighbouring Germans are suffering under foreign domination and a vital artery of the German nation has become a playground for hordes of African negros.
If the German nation is to put an end to a state of things which threatens to wipe it off the map of Europe it must not fall into the errors of the pre-War period and make the whole world its enemy. But it must ascertain who is its most dangerous enemy so that it can concentrate all its forces in a struggle to beat him. And if, in order to carry through this struggle to victory, sacrifices should be made in other quarters, future generations will not condemn us for that. They will take account of the miseries and anxieties which led us to make such a bitter decision, and in the light of that consideration they will more clearly recognize the brilliancy of our success.
Again I must say here that we must always be guided by the fundamental principle that, as a preliminary to winning back lost provinces, the political independence and strength of the motherland must first be restored.
The first task which has to be accomplished is to make that independence possible and to secure it by a wise policy of alliances, which presupposes an energetic management of our public affairs.
But it is just on this point that we, National Socialists, have to guard against being dragged into the tow of our ranting bourgeois patriots who take their cue from the Jew. It would be a disaster if, instead of preparing for the coming struggle, our Movement also were to busy itself with mere protests by word of mouth.
It was the fantastic idea of a Nibelungen alliance with the decomposed body of the Habsburg State that brought about Germany's ruin. Fantastic sentimentality in dealing with the possibilities of foreign policy today would be the best means of preventing our revival for innumerable years to come.

Here I must briefly answer the objections which may be raised in regard to the three questions I have put.
1. Is it possible at all to form an alliance with the present Germany, whose weakness is so visible to all eyes?
2. Can the ex-enemy nations change their attitude towards Germany?
3. In other nations is not the influence of Jewry stronger than the recognition of their own interests, and does not this influence thwart all their good intentions and render all their plans futile?
I think that I have already dealt adequately with one of the two aspects of the first point. Of course nobody will enter into an alliance with the present Germany. No Power in the world would link its fortunes with a State whose government does not afford grounds for the slightest confidence. As regards the attempt which has been made by many of our compatriots to explain the conduct of the Government by referring to the woeful state of public feeling and thus excuse such conduct, I must strongly object to that way of looking at things.
The lack of character which our people have shown during the last six years is deeply distressing. The indifference with which they have treated the most urgent necessities of our nation might veritably lead one to despair. Their cowardice is such that it often cries to heaven for vengeance. But one must never forget that we are dealing with a people who gave to the world, a few years previously, an admirable example of the highest human qualities. From the first days of August 1914 to the end of the tremendous struggle between the nations, no people in the world gave a better proof of manly courage, tenacity and patient endurance, than this people gave who are so cast down and dispirited today. Nobody will dare to assert that the lack of character among our people today is typical of them. What we have to endure today, among us and around us, is due only to the influence of the sad and distressing effects that followed the high treason committed on November 9th, 1918. More than ever before the word of the poet is true: that evil can only give rise to evil. But even in this epoch those qualities among our people which are fundamentally sound are not entirely lost. They slumber in the depths of the national conscience, and sometimes in the clouded firmament we see certain qualities like shining lights which Germany will one day remember as the first symptoms of a revival. We often see young Germans assembling and forming determined resolutions, as they did in 1914, freely and willingly to offer themselves as a sacrifice on the altar of their beloved Fatherland. Millions of men have resumed work, whole-heartedly and zealously, as if no revolution had ever affected them. The smith is at his anvil once again. And the farmer drives his plough. The scientist is in his laboratory. And everybody is once again attending to his duty with the same zeal and devotion as formerly.
The oppression which we suffer from at the hands of our enemies is no longer taken, as it formerly was, as a matter for laughter; but it is resented with bitterness and anger. There can be no doubt that a great change of attitude has taken place.
This evolution has not yet taken the shape of a conscious intention and movement to restore the political power and independence of our nation; but the blame for this must be attributed to those utterly incompetent people who have no natural endowments to qualify them for statesmanship and yet have been governing our nation since 1918 and leading it to ruin.
Yes. If anybody accuses our people today he ought to be asked: What is being done to help them? What are we to say of the poor support which the people give to any measures introduced by the Government? Is it not true that such a thing as a Government hardly exists at all? And must we consider the poor support which it receives as a sign of a lack of vitality in the nation itself; or is it not rather a proof of the complete failure of the methods employed in the management of this valuable trust? What have our Governments done to re-awaken in the nation a proud spirit of self-assertion, up-standing manliness, and a spirit of righteous defiance towards its enemies?
In 1919, when the Peace Treaty was imposed on the German nation, there were grounds for hoping that this instrument of unrestricted oppression would help to reinforce the outcry for the freedom of Germany. Peace treaties which make demands that fall like a whip-lash on the people turn out not infrequently to be the signal of a future revival.
To what purpose could the Treaty of Versailles have been exploited?
In the hands of a willing Government, how could this instrument of unlimited blackmail and shameful humiliation have been applied for the purpose of arousing national sentiment to its highest pitch? How could a well-directed system of propaganda have utilized the sadist cruelty of that treaty so as to change the indifference of the people to a feeling of indignation and transform that indignation into a spirit of dauntless resistance?
Each point of that Treaty could have been engraved on the minds and hearts of the German people and burned into them until sixty million men and women would find their souls aflame with a feeling of rage and shame; and a torrent of fire would burst forth as from a furnace, and one common will would be forged from it, like a sword of steel. Then the people would join in the common cry: "To arms again!"
Yes. A treaty of that kind can be used for such a purpose. Its unbounded oppression and its impudent demands were an excellent propaganda weapon to arouse the sluggish spirit of the nation and restore its vitality.
Then, from the child's story-book to the last newspaper in the country, and every theatre and cinema, every pillar where placards are posted and every free space on the hoardings should be utilized in the service of this one great mission, until the faint-hearted cry, "Lord, deliver us," which our patriotic associations send up to Heaven today would be transformed into an ardent prayer: "Almighty God, bless our arms when the hour comes. Be just, as Thou hast always been just. Judge now if we deserve our freedom. Lord, bless our struggle."
All opportunities were neglected and nothing was done.
Who will be surprised now if our people are not such as they should be or might be? The rest of the world looks upon us only as its valet, or as a kindly dog that will lick its master's hand after he has been whipped.
Of course the possibilities of forming alliances with other nations are hampered by the indifference of our own people, but much more by our Governments. They have been and are so corrupt that now, after eight years of indescribable oppression, there exists only a faint desire for liberty.
In order that our nation may undertake a policy of alliances, it must restore its prestige among other nations, and it must have an authoritative Government that is not a drudge in the service of foreign States and the taskmaster of its own people, but rather the herald of the national will.
If our people had a government which would look upon this as its mission, six years would not have passed before a courageous foreign policy on the part of the Reich would find a corresponding support among the people, whose desire for freedom would be encouraged and intensified thereby.
The third objection referred to the difficulty of changing the ex-enemy nations into friendly allies. That objection may be answered as follows:
The general anti-German psychosis which has developed in other countries through the war propaganda must of necessity continue to exist as long as there is not a renaissance of the national conscience among the German people, so that the German Reich may once again become a State which is able to play its part on the chess-board of European politics and with whom the others feel that they can play. Only when the Government and the people feel absolutely certain of being able to undertake a policy of alliances can one Power or another, whose interests coincide with ours, think of instituting a system of propaganda for the purpose of changing public opinion among its own people. Naturally it will take several years of persevering and ably directed work to reach such a result. Just because a long period is needed in order to change the public opinion of a country, it is necessary to reflect calmly before such an enterprise be undertaken. This means that one must not enter upon this kind of work unless one is absolutely convinced that it is worth the trouble and that it will bring results which will be valuable in the future. One must not try to change the opinions and feelings of a people by basing one's actions on the vain cajolery of a more or less brilliant Foreign Minister, but only if there be a tangible guarantee that the new orientation will be really useful. Otherwise public opinion in the country dealt with may be just thrown into a state of complete confusion. The most reliable guarantee that can be given for the possibility of subsequently entering into an alliance with a certain State cannot be found in the loquacious suavity of some individual member of the Government, but in the manifest stability of a definite and practical policy on the part of the Government as a whole, and in the support which is given to that policy by the public opinion of the country. The faith of the public in this policy will be strengthened all the more if the Government organize one active propaganda to explain its efforts and secure public support for them, and if public opinion favourably responds to the Government's policy.
Therefore a nation in such a position as ours will be looked upon as a possible ally if public opinion supports the Government's policy and if both are united in the same enthusiastic determination to carry through the fight for national freedom. That condition of affairs must be firmly established before any attempt can be made to change public opinion in other countries which, for the sake of defending their most elementary interests, are disposed to take the road shoulder-to-shoulder with a companion who seems able to play his part in defending those interests. In other words, this means that they will be ready to establish an alliance.
For this purpose, however, one thing is necessary. Seeing that the task of bringing about a radical change in the public opinion of a country calls for hard work, and many do not at first understand what it means, it would be both foolish and criminal to commit mistakes which could be used as weapons in the hands of those who are opposed to such a change.
One must recognize the fact that it takes a long time for a people to understand completely the inner purposes which a Government has in view, because it is not possible to explain the ultimate aims of the preparations that are being made to carry through a certain policy. In such cases the Government has to count on the blind faith of the masses or the intuitive instinct of the ruling caste that is more developed intellectually. But since many people lack this insight, this political acumen and faculty for seeing into the trend of affairs, and since political considerations forbid a public explanation of why such and such a course is being followed, a certain number of leaders in intellectual circles will always oppose new tendencies which, because they are not easily grasped, can be pointed to as mere experiments. And that attitude arouses opposition among conservative circles regarding the measures in question.
For this reason a strict duty devolves upon everybody not to allow any weapon to fall into the hands of those who would interfere with the work of bringing about a mutual understanding with other nations. This is specially so in our case, where we have to deal with the pretentions and fantastic talk of our patriotic associations and our small bourgeoisie who talk politics in the cafes. That the cry for a new war fleet, the restoration of our colonies, etc., has no chance of ever being carried out in practice will not be denied by anyone who thinks over the matter calmly and seriously. These harmless and sometimes half-crazy spouters in the war of protests are serving the interests of our mortal enemy, while the manner in which their vapourings are exploited for political purposes in England cannot be considered as advantageous to Germany.
They squander their energies in futile demonstrations against the whole world. These demonstrations are harmful to our interests and those who indulge in them forget the fundamental principle which is a preliminary condition of all success. What thou doest, do it thoroughly. Because we keep on howling against five or ten States we fail to concentrate all the forces of our national will and our physical strength for a blow at the heart of our bitterest enemy. And in this way we sacrifice the possibility of securing an alliance which would reinforce our strength for that decisive conflict.
Here, too, there is a mission for National Socialism to fulfil. It must teach our people not to fix their attention on the little things but rather on the great things, not to exhaust their energies on secondary objects, and not to forget that the object we shall have to fight for one day is the bare existence of our people and that the sole enemy we shall have to strike at is that Power which is robbing us of this existence.
It may be that we shall have many a heavy burden to bear. But this is by no means an excuse for refusing to listen to reason and raise nonsensical outcries against the rest of the world, instead of concentrating all our forces against the most deadly enemy.
Moreover, the German people will have no moral right to complain of the manner in which the rest of the world acts towards them, as long as they themselves have not called to account those criminals who sold and betrayed their own country. We cannot hope to be taken very seriously if we indulge in long-range abuse and protests against England and Italy and then allow those scoundrels to circulate undisturbed in our own country who were in the pay of the enemy war propaganda, took the weapons out of our hands, broke the backbone of our resistance and bartered away the Reich for thirty pieces of silver.
The enemy did only what was expected. And we ought to learn from the stand he took and the way he acted.
Anyone who cannot rise to the level of this outlook must reflect that otherwise there would remain nothing else than to renounce the idea of adopting any policy of alliances for the future. For if we cannot form an alliance with England because she has robbed us of our colonies, or with Italy because she has taken possession of South Tyrol, or with Poland or Czechoslovakia, then there remains no other possibility of an alliance in Europe except with France which, inter alia, has robbed us of Alsace and Lorraine.
There can scarcely be any doubt as to whether this last alternative would be advantageous to the interests of the German people. But if it be defended by somebody one is always doubtful whether that person be merely a simpleton or an astute rogue.
As far as concerns the leaders in these activities, I think the latter hypothesis is true.
A change in public feeling among those nations which have hitherto been enemies and whose true interests will correspond in the future with ours could be effected, as far as human calculation goes, if the internal strength of our State and our manifest determination to secure our own existence made it clear that we should be valuable allies. Moreover, it is necessary that our incompetent way of doing things and our criminal conduct in some matters should not furnish grounds which may be utilized for purposes of propaganda by those who would oppose our projects of establishing an alliance with one or other of our former enemies.
The answer to the third question is still more difficult: Is it conceivable that they who represent the true interests of those nations which may possibly form an alliance with us could put their views into practice against the will of the Jew, who is the mortal enemy of national and independent popular States?
For instance, could the motive-forces of Great Britain's traditional statesmanship smash the disastrous influence of the Jew, or could they not?
This question, as I have already said, is very difficult to answer. The answer depends on so many factors that it is impossible to form a conclusive judgment. Anyhow, one thing is certain: The power of the Government in a given State and at a definite period may be so firmly established in the public estimation and so absolutely at the service of the country's interests that the forces of international Jewry could not possibly organize a real and effective obstruction against measures considered to be politically necessary.
The fight which Fascist Italy waged against Jewry's three principal weapons, the profound reasons for which may not have been consciously understood (though I do not believe this myself) furnishes the best proof that the poison fangs of that Power which transcends all State boundaries are being drawn, even though in an indirect way. The prohibition of Freemasonry and secret societies, the suppression of the supernational Press and the definite abolition of Marxism, together with the steadily increasing consolidation of the Fascist concept of the State – all this will enable the Italian Government, in the course of some years, to advance more and more the interests of the Italian people without paying any attention to the hissing of the Jewish world-hydra.
The English situation is not so favourable. In that country which has 'the freest democracy' the Jew dictates his will, almost unrestrained but indirectly, through his influence on public opinion. And yet there is a perpetual struggle in England between those who are entrusted with the defence of State interests and the protagonists of Jewish world-dictatorship.
After the War it became clear for the first time how sharp this contrast is, when British statesmanship took one stand on the Japanese problem and the Press took a different stand.
Just after the War had ceased the old mutual antipathy between America and Japan began to reappear. Naturally the great European Powers could not remain indifferent to this new war menace. In England, despite the ties of kinship, there was a certain amount of jealousy and anxiety over the growing importance of the United States in all spheres of international economics and politics. What was formerly a colonial territory, the daughter of a great mother, seemed about to become the new mistress of the world. It is quite understandable that today England should re-examine her old alliances and that British statesmanship should look anxiously to the danger of a coming moment when the cry would no longer be: "Britain rules the waves", but rather: "The Seas belong to the United States".
The gigantic North American State, with the enormous resources of its virgin soil, is much more invulnerable than the encircled German Reich. Should a day come when the die which will finally decide the destinies of the nations will have to be cast in that country, England would be doomed if she stood alone. Therefore she eagerly reaches out her hand to a member of the yellow race and enters an alliance which, from the racial point of view is perhaps unpardonable; but from the political viewpoint it represents the sole possibility of reinforcing Britain's world position in face of the strenuous developments taking place on the American continent.
Despite the fact that they fought side by side on the European battlefields, the British Government did not decide to conclude an alliance with the Asiatic partner, yet the whole Jewish Press opposed the idea of a Japanese alliance.
How can we explain the fact that up to 1918 the Jewish Press championed the policy of the British Government against the German Reich and then suddenly began to take its own way and showed itself disloyal to the Government?
It was not in the interests of Great Britain to have Germany annihilated, but primarily a Jewish interest. And today the destruction of Japan would serve British political interests less than it would serve the far-reaching intentions of those who are leading the movement that hopes to establish a Jewish world-empire. While England is using all her endeavours to maintain her position in the world, the Jew is organizing his aggressive plans for the conquest of it.
He already sees the present European States as pliant instruments in his hands, whether indirectly through the power of so-called Western Democracy or in the form of a direct domination through Russian Bolshevism. But it is not only the old world that he holds in his snare; for a like fate threatens the new world. Jews control the financial forces of America on the stock exchange. Year after year the Jew increases his hold on Labour in a nation of 120 million souls. But a very small section still remains quite independent and is thus the cause of chagrin to the Jew.
The Jews show consummate skill in manipulating public opinion and using it as an instrument in fighting for their own future.
The great leaders of Jewry are confident that the day is near at hand when the command given in the Old Testament will be carried out and the Jews will devour the other nations of the earth.
Among this great mass of denationalized countries which have become Jewish colonies one independent State could bring about the ruin of the whole structure at the last moment. The reason for doing this would be that Bolshevism as a world-system cannot continue to exist unless it encompasses the whole earth. Should one State preserve its national strength and its national greatness the empire of the Jewish satrapy, like every other tyranny, would have to succumb to the force of the national idea.
As a result of his millennial experience in accommodating himself to surrounding circumstances, the Jew knows very well that he can undermine the existence of European nations by a process of racial bastardization, but that he could hardly do the same to a national Asiatic State like Japan. To-day he can ape the ways of the German and the Englishman, the American and the Frenchman, but he has no means of approach to the yellow Asiatic. Therefore he seeks to destroy the Japanese national State by using other national States as his instruments, so that he may rid himself of a dangerous opponent before he takes over supreme control of the last national State and transforms that control into a tyranny for the oppression of the defenceless.
He does not want to see a national Japanese State in existence when he founds his millennial empire of the future, and therefore he wants to destroy it before establishing his own dictatorship.
And so he is busy today in stirring up antipathy towards Japan among the other nations, as he stirred it up against Germany. Thus it may happen that while British statesmanship is still endeavouring to ground its policy in the alliance with Japan, the Jewish Press in Great Britain may be at the same time leading a hostile movement against that ally and preparing for a war of destruction by pretending that it is for the triumph of democracy and at the same time raising the war-cry: Down with Japanese militarism and imperialism.
Thus in England today the Jew opposes the policy of the State. And for this reason the struggle against the Jewish world-danger will one day begin also in that country.
And here again the National Socialist Movement has a tremendous task before it.
It must open the eyes of our people in regard to foreign nations and it must continually remind them of the real enemy who menaces the world today. In place of preaching hatred against Aryans from whom we may be separated on almost every other ground but with whom the bond of kindred blood and the main features of a common civilization unite us, we must devote ourselves to arousing general indignation against the maleficent enemy of humanity and the real author of all our sufferings.
The National Socialist Movement must see to it that at least in our own country the mortal enemy is recognized and that the fight against him may be a beacon light pointing to a new and better period for other nations as well as showing the way of salvation for Aryan humanity in the struggle for its existence.
Finally, may reason be our guide and will-power our strength. And may the sacred duty of directing our conduct as I have pointed out give us perseverance and tenacity; and may our faith be our supreme protection.


Chapter XIV: Eastern Orientation or Eastern Policy

There are two reasons which induce me to submit to a special examination the relation of Germany to Russia:
Here perhaps we are dealing with the most decisive concern of all German foreign affairs; and
This question is also the touchstone for the political capacity of the young National Socialist movements to think clearly and to act correctly.
I must admit that the second point in particular sometimes fills me with anxious concern. Since our young movement does not obtain membership material from the camp of the indifferent, but chiefly from very extreme outlooks, it is only too natural if these people, in the field of understanding foreign affairs as in other fields, are burdened with the preconceived ideas or feeble understanding of the circles to which they previously belonged, both politically and philosophically. And this by no means applies only to the man who comes to us from the Left. On the contrary. Harmful as his previous instruction with regard to such problems might be, in part at least it was not infrequently balanced by an existing remnant of natural and healthy instinct. Then it was only necessary to substitute a better attitude for the influence that was previously forced upon him, and often the essentially healthy instinct and impulse of self-preservation that still survived in him could be regarded as our best ally.
It is much harder, on the other hand, to induce dear political thinking in a man whose previous education in this field was no less devoid of any reason and logic, but on top of all this had also sacrified his last remnant of natural instinct on the altar of objectivity. Precisely the members of our so-called intelligentsia are the hardest to move to a really clear and logical defense of their interests and the interests of their nation. They are not only burdened with a dead weight of the most senseless conceptions and prejudices, but what makes matters completely intolerable is that they have lost and abandoned all healthy instinct of self-preservation. The National Socialist movement is compelled to endure hard struggles with these people, hard because, despite total incompetence, they often unfortunately are afflicted with an amazing conceit, which causes them to look down without the slightest inner justification upon other people, for the most part healthier than they. Supercilious, arrogant knowit-alls, without any capacity for cool testing and weighing, which, in turn, must be recognized as the pre-condition for any will and action in the field of foreign affairs.
Since these very circles are beginning today to divert the tendency of our foreign policy in the most catastrophic way from any real defense of the folkish interests of our people, placing it instead in the service of their fantastic ideology, I feel it incumbent upon me to discuss for my supporters the most important question in the field of foreign affairs, our relation to Russia, in particular, and as thoroughly as is necessary for the general understanding and possible in the scope of such a work
But first I would like to make the following introductory remarks:
If under foreign policy we must understand the regulation of a nation's relations with the rest of the world, the manner of this regulation will be determined by certain definite facts. As National Socialists we can, furthermore, establish the following principle concerning the nature of the foreign policy of a folkish state:
The foreign policy of the fokish state must safeguard the existence on this planet of the race embodied in the state, by creating a healthy, viable natural relation between the nation's population and growth on the one hand and the quantity and quality of its soil on the other hand.
As a healthy relation we may regard only that condition which assures the sustenance of a people on its own soil. Every other condition, even if it endures for hundreds, nay, thousands of years, is nevertheless unhealthy and will sooner or later lead to the injury if not annihilation of the people in question.
Only an adequately large space on this earth assures a nation of freedom of existence.
Moreover, the necessary size of the territory to be settled cannot be judged exclusively on the basis of present requirements, not even in fact on the basis of the yield of the soil compared to the population. For, as I explained in the first volume, under 'German Alliance Policy Before the War,' in addition to its importance as a direct source of a people's food, another significance, that is, a military and political one, must be attributed to the area of a state. If a nation's sustenance as such is assured by the amount of its soil, the safeguarding of the existing soil itself must also be borne in mind. This lies in the general power-political strength of the state, which in turn to no small extent is determined by geo-military considerations.
Hence, the German nation can defend its future only as a world power. For more than two thousand years the defense of our people's interests, as we should designate our more or less fortunate activity in the field of foreign affairs, was world history. We ourselves were witnesses to this fact: for the gigantic struggle of the nations in the years 1914-1918 was only the struggle of the German people for its existence on the globe, but we designated the type of event itself as a World War.
The German people entered this struggle as a supposed world power. I say here 'supposed,' for in reality it was none. If the German nation in 1914 had had a different relation between area and population, Germany would really have been a world power, and the War, aside from all other factors, could have been terminated favorably.
Germany today is no world power. Even if our momentary military impotence were overcome, we should no longer have any claim to this title. What can a formation, as miserable in its relation of population to area as the German Reich today, mean on this planet? In an era when the earth is gradually being divided up among states, some of which embrace almost entire continents, we cannot speak of a world power in connection with a formation whose political mother country is limited to the absurd area of five hundred thousand square kilometers.
From the purely territorial point of view, the area of the German Reich vanishes completely as compared with that of the socalled world powers. Let no one cite England as a proof to the contrary, for England in reality is merely the great capital of the British world empire which calls nearly a quarter of the earth's surface its own. In addition, we must regard as giant states, first of all the American Union, then Russia and China. All are spatial formations having in part an area more than ten times greater than the present German Reich. And even France must be counted among these states. Not only that she complements her army to an ever-increasing degree from her enormous empire's reservoir of colored humanity, but racially as well, she is making such great progress in negrification that we can actually speak of an African state arising on European soil. The colonial policy of present-day France cannot be compared with that of Germany in the past. If the development of France in the present style were to be continued for three hundred years, the last remnants of Frankish blood would be submerged in the developing European-African mulatto state. An immense self-contained area of settlement from the Rhine to the Congo, filled with a lower race gradually produced from continuous bastardization.
This distinguishes French colonial policy from the old German one.
The former German colonial policy, like everything we did, was carried out by halves. It neither increased the settlement area of the German Reich, nor did it undertake any attempt- criminal though it would have been-to strengthen the Reich by the use of black blood. The Askaris in German East Africa were a short, hesitant step in this direction. Actually they served only for the defense of the colonies themselves. The idea of bringing black troops into a European battlefield, quite aside from its practical impossibility in the World War, never existed even as a design to be realized under more favorable circumstances, while, on the contrary, it was always regarded and felt by the French as the basic reason for their colonial activity.
Thus, in the world today we see a number of power states, some of which not only far surpass the strength of our German nation in population, but whose area above all is the chief support of their political power. Never has the relation of the German Reich to other existing world states been as unfavorable as at the beginning of our history two thousand years ago and again today. Then we were a young people, rushing headlong into a world of great crumbling state formations, whose last giant, Rome, we ourselves helped to fell. Today we find ourselves in a world of great power states in process of formation, with our own Reich sinking more and more into insignificance.
We must bear this bitter truth coolly and soberly in mind. We must follow and compare the German Reich through the centuries in its relation to other states with regard to population and area. I know that everyone will then come to the dismayed conclusion which I have stated at the beginning of this discussion: Germany is no longer a world power, regardless whether she is strong or weak from the military point of view.
We have lost all proportion to the other great states of the earth, and this thanks only to the positively catastrophic leadership of our nation in the field of foreign affairs, thanks to our total failure to be guided by what I should almost call a testamentary aim in foreign policy, and thanks to the loss of any healthy instinct and impulse of self-preservation.
If the National Socialist movement really wants to be consecrated by history with a great mission for our nation, it must be permeated by knowledge and filled with pain at our true situation in this world; boldly and conscious of its goal, it must take up the struggle against the aimlesmess and incompetence which have hitherto guided our German nation in the line of foreign affairs. Then, without consideration of 'traditions' and prejudices, it must find the courage to gather our people and their strength for an advance along the road that will lead this people from its present restricted living space to new land and soil, and hence also free it from the danger of vanishing frotn the earth or of serving others as a slave nation.
The National Socialist movement must strive to eliminate the disproportion between our population and our area-viewing this latter as a source of food as well as a basis for power politics-between our historical past and the hopelessness of our present impotence. And in this it must remain aware that we, as guardians of the highest humanity on this earth, are bound by the highest obligation, and the more it strives to bring the German people to racial awareness so that, in addition to breeding dogs, horses, and cats, they will have mercy on their own blood, the more it will be able to meet this obligation.




If I characterize German policy up to now as aimless and incompetent, the proof of my assertion lies in the actual failure of this policy. If our people had been intellectually inferior or cowardly, the results of its struggle on the earth could not be worse than what we see before us today. Neither must the development of the last decades before the War deceive us on this score; for we cannot measure the strength of an empire by itself, but only by comparison with other states. And just such a comparison furnishes proof that the increase in strength of the other states was not only more even, but also greater in its ultimate effect; that consequently, despite its apparent rise, Germany's road actually diverged more and more from that of the other states and fell far behind; in short, the difference in magnitudes increased to our disfavor. Yes, as time went on, we fell behind more and more even in population. But since our people is certainly excelled by none on earth in heroism, in fact, all in all has certainly given the most blood of all the nations on earth for the preservation of its existence, the failure can reside only in the mistaken way in which it was given.
If we examine the political experiences of our people for more than a thousand years in this connection, passing all the innumerable wars and struggles in review and examining the present end result they created, we shall be forced to admit that this sea of blood has given rise to only three phenomena which we are justified in claiming as enduring fruits of clearly defined actions in the field of foreign and general politics:
(1) The colonization of the Ostmark, carried out mostly by Bavarians;
(2) the acquisition and penetration of the territory east of the Elbe; and
(3) the organization by the Hohenzollerns of the Brandenburg-Prussian state as a model and nucleus for crystallization of a new Reich.
An instructive warning for the future!
The first two great successes of our foreign policy have remained the most enduring. Without them our nation today would no longer have any importance at all. They were the first, but unfortunately the only successful attempt to bring the rising population into harmony with the quantity of our soil. And it must be regarded as truly catastrophic that our German historians have never been able to estimate correctly these two achievements which are by far the greatest and most significant for the future, but by contrast have glorified everything conceivable, praised and admired fantastic heroism, innumerable adventurous wars and struggles, instead of finally recognizing how unimportant most of these events have been for the nation's great line of development.
The third great success of our political activity lies in the formation of the Prussian state and the resultant cultivation of a special state idea, as also of the German army's instinct of selfpreservation and self-defense, adapted to the modern world and put into organized form. The development of the idea of individual militancy into the duty of national militancy [conscription] has grown out of every state formation and every state conception. The significance of this development cannot be overestimated. Through the discipline of the Prussian army organism, the German people, shot through with hyperindividualism by their racial divisions, won back at least a part of the capacity for organization which they had long since lost. What other peoples still primitively possess in their herd community instinct, we, partially at least, regained artificially for our national community through the process of military training. Hence the elimination of universal conscription- which for dozens of other peoples might be a matter of no importance-is for us fraught with the gravest consequences. Ten German generations without corrective and educational military training, left to the evil effects of their racial and hence philosophical division-and our nation would really have lost the last remnant of an independent existence on this planet. Only through individual men, in the bosom of foreign nations, could the German spirit make its contribution to culture, and its origin would not even be recognized. Cultural fertilizer, until the last remnant of Aryan-Nordic blood in us would be corrupted or extinguished.
It is noteworthy that the significance of these real political successes won by our nation in its struggles, enduring more than a thousand years, were far better understood and appreciated by our adversaries than by ourselves. Even today we still rave about a heroism which robbed our people of millions of its noblest blood-bearers, but in its ultimate result remained totally fruitless.
The distinction between the real political successes of our people and the national blood spent for fruitless aims is of the greatest importance for our conduct in the present and the future.
We National Socialists must never under any circumstances join in the foul hurrah patriotism of our present bourgeois world. In particular it is mortally dangerous to regard the last pre-War developments as binding even in the slightest degree for our own course. From the whole historical development of the nineteenth century, not a single obligation can be derived which was grounded in this period itself. In contrast to the conduct of the representatives of this period, we must again profess the highest aim of all foreign policy, to wit: to bring the soil into harmony with the population Yes, from the past we can only learn that, in setting an objective for our political activity, we must proceed in two directions: Land and soil as the goal of ourforeign policy, and a new philosophically established, uniform foundation as the aim of political activity at home.
I still wish briefly to take a position on the question as to what extent the demand for soil and territory seems ethically and morally justified. This is necessary, since unfortunately, even in socalled folkish circles, all sorts of unctuous bigmouths step forward, endeavoring to set the rectification of the injustice of 1918 as the aim of the German nation's endeavors in the field of foreign affairs, but at the same time find it necessary to assure the whole world of folkish brotherhood and sympathy.
I should like to make the following preliminary remarks: The demand for restoration of the frontiers of 1914 is a political absurdity of ssxch proportions and consegsxences as to make it seem a crime. Quite aside from the fact that the Reich's frontiers in 19X4 were anything but logical. For in reality they were neither complete in the sense of embracing the people of German nationality, nor sensible with regard to geomilitary expediency. They were not the result of a considered political action, but momentary frontiers in a political struggle that was by no means concluded; partly, in fact, they were the results of chance. With equal right and in many cases with more right, some other sample year of German history could be picked out, and the restoration of the conditions at that time declared to be the aim of an activity in foreign affairs. The above demand is entirely suited to our bourgeois society, which here as elsewhere does not possess a single creative political idea for the future, but lives only in the past, in fact, in the most immediate past; for even their backward gaze does not extend beyond their own times. The law of inertia binds them to a given situation and causes them to resist any change in it, but without ever increasing the activity of this opposition beyond the mere power of perseverance. So it is obvious that the political horizon of these people does not extend beyond the year 1914. By proclaiming the restoration of those borders as the political aim of their activity, they keep mending the crumbling league of our adversaries. Only in this way can it be explained that eight years after a world struggle in which states, some of which had the most heterogeneous desires, took part, the coalition of the victors of those days can still maintain itself in a more or less unbroken form.
All these states were at one time beneficiaries of the German collapse. Fear of our strength caused the greed and envy of the individual great powers among themselves to recede. By grabbing as much of the Reich as they could, they found the best guard against a future uprising. A bad conscience and fear of our people's strength is still the most enduring cement to hold together the various members of this alliance.
And we do not disappoint them. By setting up the restoration of the borders of 1914 as a political program for Germany, our bourgeoisie frighten away every pa rtner who might desire to leave the league of our enemies, since he must inevitably fear to be attacked singly and thereby lose the protection of his individual fellow allies. Each single state feels concerned and threatened by this slogan.
Moreover, it is senseless in two respects:
(1) because the instruments of power are lacking to remove it from the vapors of club evenings into reality; and
(2) because, if it could actually be realized, the outcome would again be so pitiful that, by God, it would not be worth while to risk the blood of our people for this.
For it should scarcely seem questionable to anyone that ever the restoration of the frontiers of 1914 could be achieved only by blood. Only childish and naive minds can lull themselves in the idea that they can bring about a correction of Versailles by wheedling and begging. Quite aside from the fact that such an attempt would presuppose a man of Talleyrand's talents, which we do not possess. One half of our political figures consist of extremely sly, but equally spineless elements which are hostile toward our nation to begin with, while the other is composed of goodnatured, harmless, and easy-going soft-heads. Moreover, the times have changed since the Congress of Vienna: Today it is not princes and princes' mistresses who haggle and bargain over state borders; it is the inexorable Jew who struggles for his domination over the nations. No nation can remove this hand from its throat except by the sword. Only the assembled and concentrated might of a national passion rearing up in its strength can defy the international enslavement of peoples. Such a process is and remains a bloody one.
If, however, we harbor the conviction that the German future, regardless what happens, demands the supreme sacrifice, quite aside from all considerations of political expediency as such, we must set up an aim worthy of this sacrifice and fight for it.
The boundaries of the year 1914 mean nothing at all for the German future. Neither did they provide a defense of the past, nor would they contain any strength for the future. Through them the German nation will neither achieve its inner integrity, nor will its sustenance be safeguarded by them, nor do these boundaries, viewed from the military standpoint, seem expedient or even satisfactory, nor finally can they improve the relation in which we at present find ourselves toward the other world powers, or, better expressed, the real world powers. The lag behind England will not be caught up, the magnitude of the Union will not be achieved; not even France would experience a material diminution of her world-political importance.
Only one thing would be certain: even with a favorable outcome, such an attempt to restore the borders of 1914 would lead to a further bleeding of our national body, so much so that there would be no worth-while blood left to stake for the decisions and actions really to secure the nation's future. On the contrary, drunk with such a shallow success, we should renounce any further goals, all the more readily as 'national honor' would be repaired and, for the moment at least, a few doors would have been reopened to commercial development.
As opposed to this, we National Socialists must hold unflinchingly to our aim in foreign policy, namely, to secure for the German people the land and soil to which they are entitled on this earth. And this action is the only one which, before God and our German posterity, would make any sacrifice of blood seem justified: before God, since we have been put on this earth with the mission of eternal struggle for our daily bread, beings who receive nothing as a gift, and who owe their position as lords of the earth only to the genius and the courage with which they can conquer and defend it; and before our German posterity in so far as we have shed no citizen's blood out of which a thousand others are not bequeathed to posterity. The soil on which some day German generations of peasants can beget powerful sons will sanction the investment of the sons of today, and will some day acquit the responsible statesmen of blood-guilt and sacrifice of the people, even if they are persecuted by their contemporaries.
And I must sharply attack those folkish pen-pushers who claim to regard such an acquisition of soil as a 'breach of sacred human rights' and attack it as such in their scribblings. One never knows who stands behind these fellows. But one thing is certain, that the confusion they can create is desirable and convenient to our national enemies. By such an attitude they help to weaken and destroy from within our people's will for the only correct way of defending their vital needs. For no people on this earth possesses so much as a square yard of territory on the strength of a higher will or superior right. Just as Germany's frontiers are fortuitous frontiers, momentary frontiers in the current political struggle of any period, so are the boundaries of other nations' living space. And just as the shape of our earth's Furnace can seem immutable as granite only to the thoughtless soft-head, but in reality only represents at each period an apparent pause in a continuous development, created by the mighty forces of Nature in a process of continuous growth, only to be transformed or destroyed tomorrow by greater forces, likewise the boundaries of living spaces in the life of nations.
State boundaries are made by man and changed by man.
The fact that a nation has succeeded in acquiring an undue amount of soil constitutes no higher obligation that it should be recognized eternally. At most it proves the strength of the conquerors and the weakness of the nations. And in this case, right lies in this strength alone. If the German nation today, penned into an impossible area, faces a lamentable future, this is no more a commandment of Fate than revolt against this state of affairs constitutes an affront to Fate. No more than any higher power has promised another nation more territory than the Gerrnan nation, or is offended by the fact of this unjust distribution of the soil. Just as our ancestors did not receive the soil on which we live today as a gift from Heaven, but had to fight for it at the risk of their lives, in the future no folkish grace will win soil for us and hence life for our people, but only the might of a victorious sword.
Much as all of us today recognize the necessity of a reckoning with France, it would remain ineffectual in the long run if it represented the whole of our aim in foreign policy. It can and will achieve meaning only if it offers the rear cover for an enlargement of our people's living space in Europe. For it is not in colonial acquisitions that we must see the solution of this problem, but exclusively in the acquisition of a territory for settlement, which will enhance the area of the mother country, and hence not only keep the new settlers in the most intimate community with the land of their origin, but secure for the total area those advantages which lie in its unified magnitude.
The folkish movement must not be the champion of other peoples, but the vanguard fighter of its own. Otherwise it is superfluous and above all has no right to sulk about the past. For in that case it is behaving in exactly tbe same wav. The old German policy was wrongly determined by dynastic considerations, and the future policy must not be directed by cosmopolitan folkish drivel. In particular, we are not constables guarding the well-known 'poor little nations,' but soldiers of our own nation.
But we National Socialists must go further. The right to possess soil can become a duty if without extension of its soil a great nation seems doomed to destruction. And most especially when not some little negro nation or other is involved, but the Germanic mother of life, which has given the present-day world its cultural picture. Germany will either be a world power or there will be no Germany. And for world power she needs that magnitude which will give her the position she needs in the present period, and life to her citizens.
And so we National Socialists consciously draw a line beneath the foreign policy tendency of our pre-War period. We take up where we broke off six hundred years ago. We stop the endless German movement to the south and west, and turn our gaze toward the land in the east. At long last we break of the colonial and commercial policy of the pre-War period and shift to the soil policy of the future.
If we speak of soil in Europe today, we can primarily have in mind only Russia and her vassal border states.
Here Fate itself seems desirous of giving us a sign. By handing P ussia to Bolshevism, it robbed the Russian nation of that intelligentsia which previously brought about and guaranteed its existence as a state. For the organization of a Russian state formation was not the result of the political abilities of the Slavs in Russia, but only a wonderful example of the state-forming efficacity of the German element in an inferior race. Numerous mighty empires on earth have been created in this way. Lower nations led by Germanic organizers and overlords have more than once grown to be mighty state formations and have endured as long as the racial nudeus of the creative state race maintained itself. For centuries Russia drew nourishment from this Germanic nucleus of its upper leading strata. Today it can be regarded as almost totally exterminated and extinguished. It has been replaced by the Jew. Impossible as it is for the Russian by himself to shake off the yoke of the Jew by his own resources, it is equally impossible for the Jew to maintain the mighty empire forever. He himself is no element of organization, but a ferment of decomposition. The Persian I empire in the east is ripe for collapse. And the end of Jewish rule in Russia will also be the end of Russia as a state. We have been chosen by Fate as witnesses of a catastrophe which will be the mightiest confirmation of the soundness of the folkish theory.
Our task, the mission of the National Socialist movement, is to bring our own people to such political insight that they will not see their goal for the future in the breath-taking sensation of a new Alexander's conquest, but in the industrious work of the German plow, to which the sword need only give soil.
It goes without saying that the Jews announce the sharpest resistance to such a policy. Better than anyone else they sense the significance of this action for their own future. This very fact should teach all really national-minded men the correctness of such a reorientation. Unfortunately, the opposite is the case. Not only in German-National, but even in 'folkish' circles, the idea of such an eastern policy is violently attacked, and, as almost always in such matters, they appeal to a higher authority. The spirit of Bismarck is cited to cover a policy which is as senseless as it is impossible and in the highest degree harmful to the German nation. Bismarck in his time, they say, always set store on good relations with Russia. This, to a certain extent, is true. But they forget to mention that he set just as great store on good relations with Italy, for example; in fact, that the same Herr von Bismarck once made an alliance with Italy in order to finish off Austria the more easily. Why, then, don't they continue this policy? 'Because the Italy of today is not the Italy of those days,' they will say. Very well. But then, honored sirs, will you permit the objection that present-day Russia is not the Russia of those days either? It never entered Bismarck's head to lay down a political course tactically and theoretically for all time. In this respect he was too much master of the moment to tie his hands in such a way. The question, therefore, most not be: What did Bismarsk do in his time? But rather: What would he do today? And this question is easier to answer. With his political astuteness, he would never ally himself unth a state that is downed to destruction.
Furthermore, Bismarck even then viewed the German colonial and commercial policy with mixed feelings, since for the moment he was concerned only with the surest method of internally consolidating the state formation he had created. And this was the only reason why at that time he welcomed the Russian rear cover, which gave him a free hand in the west. But what was profitable to Germany then would be detrimental today.
As early as 1920- 21, when the young National Socialist movement began slowly to rise above the political horizon, and here and there was referred to as the movement for German freedom, the party was approached by various quarters with an attempt to create a certain bond between it and the movements for freedom in other countries. This was in the line of the ' League of Oppressed Nations,' propagated by many. Chiefly involved were representatives of various Balkan states, and some from Egypt and India, who as individuals always impressed me as pompous big-mouths without any realistic background. But there were not a few Germans, especially in the nationalist camp, who let themselves be dazzled by such inflated Orientals and readily accepted any old Indian or Egyptian student from God knows where as a 'representative' of India or Egypt. These people never realized that they were usually dealing with persons who had absolutely nothing behind them, and above all were authorized by no one to conclude any pact with anyone, so that the practical result of any relations with such elements was nil, unless the time wasted were booked as a special loss. I always resisted such attempts. Not only that I had better things to do than twiddle away weeks in fruitless 'conferences,' but even if these men had been authorized representatives of such nations, I regarded the whole business as useless, in fact, harmful.
Even in peacetime it was bad enough that the German alliance policy, for want of any aggressive intentions of our own, ended in a defensive union of ancient states, pensioned by world history. The alliance with Austria as well as Turkey had little to be said for them. While the greatest military and industrial states on earth banded into an active aggressive union, we collected a few antique, impotent state formations and with this decaying rubbish attempted to face an active world coalition. Germany received a bitter accounting for this error in foreign policy. But this accounting does not seem to have been bitter enough to prevent our eternal dreamers from falling headlong into the same error. For the attempt to disarm the almighty victors through a 'league of Oppressed Nations' is not only ridiculous, but catastrophic as well. It is catastrophic because it distracts our people again and again from the practical possibilities, making them devote themselves to imaginative, yet fruitless hopes and illusions. The German of today really resembles the drowning man who grasps at every straw. And this can apply even to men who are otherwise exceedingly well educated. If any will-o'-the-wisp of hope, however unreal, turns up anywhere, these men are off at a trot, chasing after the phantom. Whether it is a League of Oppressed Nations, a League of Nations, or any other fantastic new invention, it will be sure to find thousands of credulous souls.
I still remember the hopes, as childish as they were incomprehensible, which suddenly arose in folkish circles in 1920-21, to the effect that British power was on the verge of collapse in India. Some Asiatic jugglers, for all I care they may have been real 'fighters for Indian freedom,' who at that time were wandering around Europe, had managed to sell otherwise perfectly reasonable people the idee fixe that the British Empire, which has its pivot in India, was on the verge of collapse at that very point. Of course, it never entered their heads that here again their own wish was the sole father of all their thoughts. No more did the inconsistency of their own hopes. For by expecting the end of the British Empire to follow from a collapse of British rule in India, they themselves admitted that India was of the most paramount importance to England.
It is most likely, however, that this vitally important question is not a profound secret known only to German-folkish prophets; presumably it is known also to the helmsmen of English destiny. It is really childish to suppose that the men in England cannot correctly estimate the importance of the Indian Empire for the British world union. And if anyone imagines that England would let India go without staking her last drop of blood, it is only a sorry sign of absolute failure to learn from the World War, and of total misapprehension and ignorance on the score of AngloSaxon determination. It is, furthermore, a proof of the German's total ignorance regarding the whole method of British penetration and administration of this empire. England will lose India either if her own administrative machinery falls a prey to racial decomposition (which at the moment is completely out of the question in India) or if she is bested by the sword of a powerful enemy. Indian agitators, however, will never achieve this. How hard it is to best England, we Germans have sufficiently learned. Quite aside from the fact that I, as a man of Germanic blood, would, in spite of everything, rather see India under English rule than under any other.
Just as lamentable are the hopes in any mythical uprising in Egypt. The 'Goly War' can give our German Schafkopf players the pleasant thrill of thinking that now perhaps others are ready to shed their blood for us-for this cowardly speculation, to tell the truth, has always been the silent father of all hopes; in reality
it would come to an infernal end under the fire of English machinegun companies and the hail of fragmentation bombs.
It just happens to be impossible to overwhelm with a coalition of cripples a powerful state that is determined to stake, if necessary, its last drop of blood for its existence. As a folkish man, who appraises the value of men on a racial basis, I am prevented by mere knowledge of the racial inferiority of these so-called 'oppressed nations' from linking the destiny of my own people with theirs.
And today we must take exactly the same position toward Russia. Present-day Russia, divested of her Germanic upper stratum, is, quite aside from the private intentions of her new masters, no ally for the German nation's fight for freedom. Considered frown the purely military angle, the relations would be simply catastrophic in case of war between Germany and Russia and Western Europe, and probably against all the rest of the world. The struggle would take place, not on Russian, but on German soil, and Germany would not be able to obtain the least effective support from Russia. The present German Reich's instruments of power are so lamentable and so useless for a foreign war, that no defense of our borders against Western Europe, including England, would be practicable, and particularly the German industrial region would lie defenselessly exposed to the concentrated aggressive arms of our foes. There is the additional fact that between Germany and Russia there lies the Polish state, completely in French hands. In case of a war between Germany and Russia and Western Europe, Russia would first have to subdue Poland before the first soldier could be sent to the western front. Yet it is not so much a question of soldiers as of technical armament. In this respect, the World War situation would repeat itself, only much more horribly. Just as German industry was then drained for our glorious allies, and, technically speaking, Germany had to fight the war almost single-handed, likewise in this struggle Russia would be entirely out of the picture as a technical factor. We could oppose practically nothing to the general motorization of the worth which in the next war will manifest itself overwhelmingly and decisively. For not only that Germany herself has remained shamefully backward in this all-important field, but from the little she possesses she would have to sustain Russia, which even today cannot claim possession of a single factory capable of producing a motor vehicle that really runs. Thus, such a war would assume the character of a plain massacre. Germany's youth would be bled even more than the last time, for as always the burden of the fighting would rest only upon us, and the result would be inevitable defeat.
But even supposing that a miracle should occur and that such a struggle did not end with the total annihilation of Germany, the ultimate outcome would only be that the German nation, bled white, would remain as before bounded by great military states and that her real situation would hence have changed in no way.
Let no one argue that in concluding an alliance with Russia we need not immediately think of war, or, if we did, that we could thoroughly prepare for it. An alliance whose aim does not embrace a plan for war is senseless and worthless. Alliances are concluded only for struggle. And even if the clash should be never so far away at the moment when the pact is concluded, the prospect of a military involvement is nevertheless its cause. And do not imagine that any power would ever interpret the meaning of such an alliance in any other way. Either a German-Russian coalition would remain on paper, or from the letter of the treaty it would be translated into visible reality-and the rest of the world would be warned. How nalve to suppose that in such a case England and France would wait a decade for the German-Russian alliance to complete its technical preparations. No, the storm would break over Germany with the speed of lightning.
And so the very fact of the conclusion of an alliance with Russia embodies a plan for the next war. Its outcome would be the end of Germany.
On top of this there is the following:
1. The present rulers of Russia have no idea of honorably entering into an alliance, let alone observing one.
Never forget that the rulers of present-day Russia are common blood-stained criminals; that they are the scum of humanity which, favored by circumstances, overran a great state in a tragic hour, slaughtered and wiped out thousands of her leading ir.telligentsia in wild blood lust, and now for almost ten years have been carrying on the most cruel and tyrannical regime of all time. Furthermore, do not forget that these rulers belong to a race which combines, in a rare mixture, bestial cruelty and an inconceivable gift for lying, and which today more than ever is conscious of a mission to impose its bloody oppression on the whole world. Do not forget that the international Jew who completely dominates Russia today regards Germany, not as an ally, but as a state destined to the same fate. And you do not make pacts with anyone whose sole interest is the destruction of his partner. Above all, you do not make them with elements to whom no pact would be sacred, since they do not live in this world as representatives of honor and sincerity, but as champions of deceit, lies, theft, plunder, and rapine. If a man believes that he can enter into profitable connections with parasites, he is like a tree trying to conclude for its own profit an agreement with a mistletoe.
2. The danger to which Russia succumbed is always present for Germany. Only a bourgeois simpleton is capable of imagining that Bolshevism has been exorcised. With his superficial thinking he has no idea that this is an instinctive process; that is, the striving of the Jewish people for world domination, a process which is just as natural as the urge of the Anglo-Saxon to seize domination of the earth. And just as the Anglo-Saxon pursues this course in his own way and carries on the fight with his own weapons, likewise the Jew. He goes his way, the way of sneaking in among the nations and boring from within, and he fights with his weapons, with lies and slander, poison and corruption, intensifying the struggle to the point of bloodily exterminating his hated foes. In Russian Bolshevism we must see the attempt undertaken by the Jews in the twentieth century to achieve world domination. Just as in other epochs they strove to reach the same goal by other, though inwardly related processes. Their endeavor lies profoundly rooted in their essential nature. No more than another nation renounces of its own accord the pursuit of its impulse for the expansion of its power and way of life, but is compelled by outward circumstances or else succumbs to impotence due to the symptoms of old age, does the Jew break off his road to world dictatorship out of voluntary renunciation, or because he represses his eternal urge. He, too, will either be thrown back in his course by forces lying outside himself, or all his striving for world domination will be ended by his own dying out. But the impotence of nations, their own death from old age, arises from the abandonment of their blood purity. And this is a thing that the Jew preserves better than any other people on earth. And so he advances on his fatal road until another force comes forth to oppose him, and in a mighty struggle hurls the heaven-stormer back to Lucifer.
Germany is today the next great war aim of Bolshevism. It requires all the force of a young missionary idea to raise our people up again, to free them from the snares of this international serpent, and to stop the inner contamination of our blood, in order that the forces of the nation thus set free can be thrown in to safeguard our nationality, and thus can prevent a repetition of the recent catastrophes down to the most distant future. If we pursue this aim, it is sheer lunacy to ally ourselves with a power whose master is the mortal enemy of our future. How can we expect to free our own people from the fetters of this poisonous embrace if we walk right into it? How shall we explain Bolshevism to the German worker as an accursed crime against humanity if we ally ourselves with the organizations of this spawn of hell, thus recognizing it in the larger sense? By what right shall we condemn a member of the broad masses for his sympathy with an outlook if the very leaders of the state choose the representatives of this outlook for allies?
The fight against Jewish world Bolshevization requires a clear attitude toward Soviet Russia. thou cannot drive out the Devil with Beelsebub.
If today even folkish circles rave about an alliance with Russia, they should just look around them in Germany and see whose support they find in their efforts. Or have folkish men lately begun to view an activity as beneficial to the German people which is recommended and promoted by the international Marxist press? Since when do folkish men fight with armor held out to them by a Jewish squire?
There is one main charge that could be raised against the old German Reich with regard to its alliance policy: not, however, that it failed to maintain good relations with Russia, but only that it ruined its relations with everyone by continuous shilly-shallying, in the pathological weakness of trying to preserve world peace at any price.
I openly confess that even in the pre-War period I would have thought it sounder if Germany, renouncing her senseless colonial policy and renouncing her merchant marine and war fleet, had concluded an alliance with England against Russia, thus passing from a feeble global policy to a determined European policy of territorial acquisition on the continent.
I have not forgotten the insolent threat which the pan-Slavic Russia of that time dared to address to Germany; I have not forgotten the constant practice mobilizations, whose sole purpose was an affront to Germany; I cannot forget the mood of public opinion in Russia, which outdid itself in hateful outbursts against our people and our Reich; I cannot forget the big Russian newspapers, which were always more enthusiastic about France than about us.
But in spite of all that, before the War there would still have been a second way: we could have propped ourselves on Russia and turned against England.
Today conditions are different. If before the War we could have choked down every possible sentiment and gone with Russia, today it is no longer possible. The hand of the world clock has moved forward since then, and is loudly striking the hour in which the destiny of our nation must be decided in one way or another. The process of consolidation in which the great states of the earth are involved at the moment is for us the last warning signal to stop and search our hearts, to lead our people out of the dream world back to hard reality, and show them the way to the future which alone will lead the old Reich to a new golden age.

If the National Socialist movement frees itself from all illusions with regard to this great and all-important task, and accepts reason as its sole guide, the catastrophe of 1918 can some day become an infinite blessing for the future of our nation. Out of this collapse our nation will arrive at a complete reorientation of its activity in foreign relations, and, furthermore, reinforced within by its new philosophy of life, will also achieve outwardly a final stabilization of its foreign policy. Then at last it will acquire what England possesses and even Russia possessed, and what again and again induced France to make the same decisions, essentially correct from the viewpoint of her own interests, to wit: A political testament.
The political testament of the German nation to govern its outward activity for all time should and must be:
Never suffer the rise of two continental powers in Europe. Regard any attempt to organize a second military power on the German frontiers, even if only in the form of creating a state capable of military strength, as an attack on Germany, and in it see not only the right, but also the duty, to employ all means up to armed force to prevent the rise of such a state, or, if one has already arisen, to smash it again.-See to it that the strength of our nation is founded, not on colonies, but on the soil of our European homeland. Never regard the Reich as secure unless for centuries to come it can give every scion of our people his own parcel of soil. Never forget that the most sacred right on this earth is a man's right to have earth to till with his own hands, and the most sacred sacrifice the blood that a man sheds for this earth.
I should not like to conclude these reflections without pointing once again to the sole alliance possibility which exists for us at the moment in Europe. In the previous chapter on the alliance problem I have already designated England and Italy as the only two states in Europe with which a closer relationship would be desirable and promising for us. Here I shall briefly touch on the military importance of such an alliance.
The military consequences of concluding this alliance would in every respect be the opposite of the consequences of an alliance with Russia. The most important consideration, first of all, is the fact that in itself an approach so England and Italy in no way conjures up a war danger. France, the sole power which could conceivably oppose the alliance, would not be in a position to do so. And consequently the alliance would give Germany the possibility of peacefully making those preparations for a reckoning with France, vhich would have to be made in any event within the scope of such a coalition. For the significant feature of such an alliance lies precisely in the fact that upon its conclusion Germany would not suddenly be exposed to a hostile invasion, but that the opposing alliance would break of its own accord; the Entente, to which we owe such infinite misfortune, would be dissolved, and hence France, the mortal enemy of our nation, would be isolated. Even if this success is limited at first to moral effect, it would suffice to give Germany freedom of movement to an extent which today is scarcely conceivable. For the law of action would be in the hands of the new European AngloXermanItalian alliance and no longer with France.
The further result would be that at one stroke Germany would be freed from her unfavorable strategic position. The most powerful protection on our fiank on the one hand, complete guaranty of our food and raw materials on the other, would be the beneficial effect of the new constellation of states.
But almost more important would be the fact that the new league would embrace states which in technical productivity almost complement one another in many respects. For the first time Germany would have allies who would not drain our own economy like leeches, but could and would contribute their share to the richest supplementation of our technical armament.
And do not overlook the final fact that in both cases we should be dealing with allies who cannot be compared with Turkey or present-day Russia. The greatest world power on earth and a youthful national state would offer different premises for a struggle in Europe than the putrid state corpses with which Germany allied herself in the last war.
Assuredly, as I emphasized in the last chapter, the difficulties opposing such an alliance are great. But was the formation of the Entente, for instance, any less difficult? What the genius of a Ring Edward VII achieved, in part almost counter to natural interests, we, too, must and will achieve, provided we are so inspired by our awareness of the necessity of such a development that with astute self-control we determine our actions accordingly. And this will become possible in the moment when, imbued with admonishing distress,l we pursue, not the diplomatic aimlessness of the last decades, but a conscious and determined course, and stick to it. Neither western nor eastern orientation must be the future goal of our foreign policy, but an eastern policy in the sense of acquiring the necessary soil for our German people. Since for this we require strength, and since France, the mortal enemy of our nation, inexorably strangles us and robs us of our strength, we must take upon ourselves every sacrifice whose consequences are cakulated to contribute to the annihilation of French efforts toward hegemony in Europe. Today every power is our natural ally, which like us feels French domination on the continent to be intolerable. No path to such a power can be too hard for us, and no renunciation can seem unutterable if only the end result of ers the possibility of downing our grimmest enemy. Then, if we can cauterize and close the biggest wound, we can calmly leave the cure of our slighter wounds to the soothing effects of time.
Today, of course, we are subjected to the hateful yapping of the enemies of our people within. We National Socialists must never let this divert us from proclaiming what in our innermost conviction is absolutely necessary. Today, it is true, we must brace ourselves against the current of a public opinion confounded by Jewish guile exploiting German gullibility; sometimes, it is true, the waves break harshly and angrily about us, but he who swims with the stream is more easily overlooked than he who bucks the waves. Today we are a reef; in a few years Fate may raise us up as a dam against which the general stream will break, and flow into a new bed.
It is, therefore, necessary that the National Socialist movement be recognized and established in the eyes of all as the champion of a definite political purpose. Whatever Heaven may have in store for us, let men recognize us by our very visor!

Once we ourselves recognize the crying need which must determine our conduct in foreign affairs, from this knowledge will flow the force of perseverance which we sometimes need when, beneath the drumfire of our hostile press hounds, one or another of us is seized with fear and there creeps upon him a faint desire to grant a concession at least in some field, and howl with the wolves, in order not to have everyone against him.


Chapter XV: The Right of Emergency Defense

THE ARMISTICE of November, 1918, ushered in a policy which in all human probability was bound to lead gradually to total submission. Historical examples of a similar nature show that nations which lay down their arms without compelling reasons prefer in the ensuing period to accept the greatest humiliations and extortions rather than attempt to change their fate by a renewed appeal to force.
This is humanly understandable. A shrewd victor will, if possible, always present his demands to the vanquished in installments. And then, with a nation that has lost its character-and this is the case of every one which voluntarily submits-he can be sure that it will not regard one more of these individual oppressions as an adequate reason for taking up arms again. 'The more extortions are willingly accepted in this way, the more unjustified it strikes people finally to take up the defensive against a new, apparently isolated, though constantly recurring, oppression, especially when, all in all, so much more and greater misfortune has already been borne in patient silence.
The fall of Carthage is the most horrible picture of such a slow execution of a people through its own deserts.
That is why Clausewitz in his Drei Bekenntnisse incomparably singles out this idea and nails it fast for all time, when he says:
'That the stain of a cowardly submission can never be effaced; that this drop of poison in the blood of a people is passed on to posterity and will paralyze and undermine the strength of later generations'; that, on the other hand, 'even the loss of this freedom after a bloody and honorable struggle assures the rebirth of a people and is the seed of life from which some day a new tree will strike fast roots.'
Of course, a people that has lost all honor and character will not concern itself with such teachings. For no one who takes them to heart can sink so low; only he who forgets them, or no longer wants to know them, collapses. Therefore, we must not expect those who embody a spineless submission suddenly to look into their hearts and, on the basis of reason and all human experience, begin to act differently than before. On the contrary, it is these men in particular who will dismiss all such teachings until either the nation is definitely accustomed to its yoke of slavery or until better forces push to the surface, to wrest the power from the hands of the infamous spoilers. In the first case these people usually do not feel so badly, since not seldom they are appointed by the shrewd victors to the office of slave overseer, which these spineless natures usually wield more mercilessly over their people than any foreign beast put in by the enemy himself.
The development since 1918 shows us that in Germany the hope of winning the victor's favor by voluntary submission unfortunately determines the political opinions and the actions of the broad masses in the most catastrophic way. I attach special importance to emphasizing the broad masses, because I cannot bring myself to profess the belief that the commissions and omissions of our people's leaders are attributable to the same ruinous lunacy. As the leadership of our destinies has, since the end of the War, been quite openly furnished by Jews, we really cannot assume that faulty knowledge alone is the cause of our misfortune; we must, on the contrary, hold the conviction that conscious purpose is destroying our nation. And once we examine the apparent madness of our nation's leadership in the field of foreign affairs from this standpoint, it is revealed as the subtlest, ice-cold logic, in the service of the Jewish idea and struggle for world conquest. And thus, it becomes understandable that the same time-span, which from 1806 to 1813 sufficed to imbue a totally collapsed Prussia with new vital energy and determination for struggle, today has not only elapsed unused, but, on the contrary, has led to an ever-greater weakening of our state.
Seven years after November, 1918, the Treaty of Locarno was signed.
The course of events was that indicated above: Once the disgraceful armistice had been signed, neither the energy nor the courage could be summoned suddenly to oppose resistance to our foes' repressive measures, which subsequently were repeated over and over. Our enemies were too shrewd to demand too much at once. They always limit their extortions to the amount which, in their opinion-and that of the German leadership- would at the moment be bearable enough so that an explosion of popular feeling need not be feared. But the more of these individual dictates had been signed, the less justified it seemed, because of a single additional extortion or exacted humiliation, to do the thing that had not been done because of so many others: to offer resistance. For this is the ' drop of poison ' of which Clausewitz speaks: the spinelessness which once begun must increase more and more and which gradually becomes the foulest heritage, burdening every future decision. It can become a terrible lead weight, a weight which a nation is not likely to shake off, but which finally drags it down into the existence of a slave race.
Thus, in Germany edicts of disarmament alternated with edicts of enslavement, political emasculation with economic pillage, and finally created that moral spirit which can regard the Dawes Plan as a stroke of good fortune and the Treaty of Locarno as a success. Viewing all this from a higher vantagepoint, we can speak of one single piece of good fortune in all this misery, which is that, though men can be befuddled, the heavens cannot be bribed. For their blessing remained absent: since then hardship and care have been the constant companions-of our people, and our one faithful ally has been misery. Destiny made no exception in this case, but gave us what we deserved. Since we no longer know how to value honor, it teaches us at least to appreciate freedom in the matter of bread. By now people have learned to cry out for bread, but one of these days they will pray for freedom.
Bitter as was the collapse of our nation in the years after 1918, and obvious at that very time, every man who dared prophesy even then what later always materialized was violently and resolutely persecuted. Wretched and bad as the leaders of our nation were, they were equally arrogant, and especially when it came to ridding themselves of undesired, because unpleasant, prophets. We were treated to- the spectacle (as we still are today!) of the greatest parliamentary thick-heads, regular saddlers and glovemakers-and not only by profession, which in itself means nothing-suddenly setting themselves on the pedestal of statesmen, from which they could lecture down at plain ordinary mortals. It had and has nothing to do with the case that such a ' statesman ' by the sixth month of his activity is shown up as the most incompetent windbag, the butt of everyone's ridicule and contempt, that he doesn't know which way to turn and has provided unmistakable proof of his total incapacity ! No, that makes no difference, on the contrary: the more lacking the parliamentary statesmen of this Republic are in real accomplishment, the more furiously they persecute those who expect accomplishments from them, who have the audacity to point out the failure of their previous activity and predict the failure of their future moves. But if once you finally pin down one of these parliamentary honorables, and this political showman really cannot deny the collapse of his whole activity and its results any longer, they find thousands and thousands of grounds for excusing their lack of success, and there is only one that they will not admit, namely, that they themselves are the main cause of all evil.
By the winter of 1922-23, at the latest, it should have been generally understood that even after the conclusion of peace France was still endeavoring with iron logic to achieve the war aim she had originally had in mind. For no one will be likely to believe that France poured out the blood of her people- never too rich to begin with-for four and a half years in the most decisive struggle of her history, only to have the damage previously done made good by subsequent reparations. Even Alsace-Lorraine in itself would not explain the energy with which the French carried on the War, if it had not been a part of French foreign policy's really great political program for the future. And this goal is: the dissolution of Germany into a hodge-podge of little states. That is what chauvinistic France fought for, though at the same time in reality it sold its people as mercenaries to the international world Jew.
This French war aim would have been attainable by the War alone if, as Paris had first hoped, the struggle had taken place on German soil. Suppose that the bloody battles of the World War had been fought, not on the Somme, in Flanders, in Artois, before Warsaw, Nijni-Novgorod, Kovno, Riga, and all the other places, but in Germany, on the Ruhr and the Main, on the Elbe, at Hanover, Leipzig, Nuremberg, etc., and you will have to agree that this would have offered a possibility of breaking up Germany. It is very questionable whether our young federative state could for four and a half years have survived the same test of strain as rigidly centralized France, oriented solely toward her uncontested center in Paris. The fact that this gigantic struggle of nations occurred outside the borders of our fatherland was not only to the immortal credit of the old army, it was also the greatest good fortune for the German future. It is my firm and heartfelt conviction, and sometimes almost a source of anguish to me, that otherwise there would long since have been no German Reich, but only ' German states.' And this is the sole reason why the blood of our fallen friends and brothers has at least not Bowed entirely in vain.
Thus everything turned out differently! True, Germany collapsed like a flash in November, 1918. But when the catastrophe occurred in the homeland, our field armies were still deep in enemy territory. The first concern of France at that time was not the dissolution of Germany, but: How shall we get the German armies out of France and Belgium as quickly as possible? And so the first task of the heads of state in Paris for concluding the World War was to disarm the German armies and if possible drive them back to Germany at once; and only after that could they devote themselves to the fulfillment of their real and original war aim. In this respect, to be sure, France was already paralyzed. For England the War had really been victoriously concluded with the annihilation of Germany as a colonial and commercial power and her reduction to the rank of a second-class state. Not only did the English possess no interest in the total extermination of the German state; they even had every reason to desire a rival against France in Europe for the future. Hence the French political leaders had to continue with determined peacetime labor what the War had begun, and Clemenceau's utterance, that for him the peace was only the continuation of the War, took on an increased significance.
Persistently, on every conceivable occasion, they had to shatter the structure of the Reich. By the imposition of one disarmament note after another, on the one hand, and by the economic extortion thus made possible, on the other hand, Paris hoped slowly to disjoint the Reich structure. The more rapidly national honor withered away in Germany, the sooner could economic pressure and unending poverty lead to destructive political effects. Such a policy of political repression and economic plunder, carried on for ten or twenty years, must gradually ruin even the best state structure and under certain circumstances dissolve it. And thereby the French war aim would finally be achieved.
By the winter of 1922-23 this must long since have been recognized as the French intent. Only two possibilities remained: We might hope gradually to blunt the French will against the tenacity of the German nation, or at long last to do what would have to be done in the end anyway, to pull the helm of the Reich ship about on some particularly crass occasion, and ram the enemy. This, to be sure, meant a life-and-death struggle, and there existed a prospect of life only if previously we succeeded in isolating France to such a degree that this second war would not again constitute a struggle of Germany against the world, but a defense of Germany against a France which was constantly disturbing the world and its peace.
I emphasize the fact, and I am firmly convinced of it, that this second eventuality must and will some day occur, whatever happens. I never believe that France's intentions toward us could ever change, for in the last analysis they are merely in line with the self-preservation of the French nation. If I were a Frenchman, and if the greatness of France were as dear to me as that of Germany is sacred, I could not and would not act any differently from Clemenceau. The French nation, slowly dying out, not only with regard to population, but particularly with regard to its best racial elements, can in the long run retain its position in the world only if Germany is shattered. French policy may pursue a thousand detours; somewhere in the end there will be this goal, the fulfillment of ultimate desires and deepest longing. And it is false to believe that a purely passive will, desiring only to preserve itself, can for any length of time resist a will that is no less powerful, but proceeds actively. As long as the eternal conflict between Germany and France is carried on only in the form of a German defense against French aggression, it will never be decided, but from year to year, from century to century, Germany will lose one position after another. Follow the movements of the German language frontier beginning with the twelfth century until today, and you will hardly be able to count on the success of an attitude and a development which has done us so much damage up till now.
Only when this is fully understood in Germany, so that the vital will of the German nation is no longer allowed to languish in purely passive defense, but is pulled together for a final active reckoning with France and thrown into a last decisive struggle with the greatest ultimate aims on the German side- only then will we be able to end the eternal and essentially so fruitless struggle between ourselves and France; presupposing, of course, that Germany actually regards the destruction of France as only a means which will afterward enable her finally to give our people the expansion made possible elsewhere. Today we count eighty million Germans in Europe! This foreign policy will be acknowledged as correct only if, after scarcely a hundred years, there are two hundred and fifty million Germans on this continent, and not living penned in as factory coolies for the rest of the world, but: as peasants and workers, who guarantee each other's livelihood by their labor.
In December, 1922, the situation between Germany and France again seemed menacingly exacerbated. France was contemplating immense new extortions, and needed pledges for them. The economic pillage had to be preceded by a political pressure and it seemed to the French that only a violent blow at the nerve center of our entire German life would enable them to subject our 'recalcitrant' people to a sharper yoke. With the occupation of the Roar, the French hoped not only to break the moral backbone of Germany once and for all, but to put us into an embarrassing economic situation in which, whether we liked it or not, we would have to assume every obligation, even the heaviest.
It was a question of bending and breaking. Germany bent at the very outset, and ended up by breaking completely later.
With the occupation of the Ruhr, Fate once again held out a hand to help the German people rise again. For what at the first moment could not but seem a great misfortune embraced on closer inspection an infinitely promising opportunity to terminate all German misery.
From the standpoint of foreign relations, the occupation of the Ruhr for the first time really alienated England basically from France, and not only in the circles of British diplomacy which had concluded, examined, and maintained the French alliance as such only with the sober eye of cold calculators, but also in the broadest circles of the English people. The English economy in particular viewed with ill-concealed displeasure this new and incredible strengthening of French continental power. For not only that France, from the purely politico-military point of view, now assumed a position in Europe such as previously not even Germany had possessed, but, economically as well, she now obtained economic foundations which almost combined a position of economic monopoly with her capacity for political competition. The largest iron mines and coal fields in Europe were thus united in the hands of a nation which, in sharp contrast to Germany, had always defended its vital interests with equal determination and activism, and which in the Great War had freshly reminded the whole world of its military reliability. With the occupation of the Ruhr coal fields by France, England's entire gain through the War was wrested from her hands, and the victor was no longer British diplomacy so industrious and alert, but Marshal Foch and the France he represented.
In Italy, too, the mood against France, which, since the end of the War, had been by no means rosy to begin with, shifted to a veritable hatred. It was the great, historical moment in which the allies of former days could become the enemies of tomorrow. If things turned out differently and the allies did not, as in the second Balkan War, suddenly break into a sudden feud among themselves, this was attributable only to the circumstance that Germany simply had no Enver Pasha, but a Reich Chancellor Cuno.
Yet not only from the standpoint of foreign policy, but of domestic policy as well, the French assault on the Ruhr held great future potentialities for Germany. A considerable part of our people which, thanks to the incessant influence of our lying press, still regarded France as the champion of progress and liberalism, was abruptly cured of this lunatic delusion. Just as the year 1914 had dispelled the dreams of international solidarity between peoples from the heads of our German workers and led them suddenly back into the world of eternal struggle, throughout which one being feeds on another and the death of the weaker means the life of the stronger, the spring of 1923 did likewise.
When the Frenchman carried out his threats and finally, though at first cautiously and hesitantly, began to move into the lower German coal district, a great decisive hour of destiny had struck for Germany. If in this moment our people combined a change of heart with a shift in their previous attitude, the Ruhr could become a Napoleonic Moscow for France. There were only two possibilities: Either we stood for this new offense and did nothing, or, directing the eyes of the German people to this land of glowing smelters and smoky furnaces, we inspired them with a glowing will to end this eternal disgrace and rather take upon themselves the terrors of the moment than bear an endless terror one moment longer.
To have discovered a third way was the immortal distinction of Reich Chancellor Cuno, to have admired it and gone along, the still more glorious distinction of our German bourgeois parties.
Here I shall first examine the second course as briefly as possible.
With the occupation of the Ruhr, France had accomplished a conspicuous breach of the Versailles Treaty. In so doing, she had also put herself in conflict with a number of signatory powers, and especially with England and Italy. France could no longer hope for any support on the part of these states for her own selfish campaign of plunder: She herself, therefore, had to bring the adventure-and that is what it was at first-to some happy conclusion. For a national German government there could be but a single course, that which honor prescribed. It was certain that for the present France could not be opposed by active force of arms; but we had to realize clearly that any negotiations, unless backed by power, would be absurd and fruitless. Without the possibility of active resistance, it was absurd to adopt the standpoint: 'We shall enter into no negotiations'; but it was even more senseless to end by entering into negotiations after all, without having meanwhile equipped ourselves with power.
Not that we could have prevented the occupation of the Ruhr by military measures. Only a madman could have advised such a decision. But utilizing the impression made by this French action and while it was being carried out, what we absolutely should have done was, without regard for the Treaty of Versailles which France herself had torn up, to secure the military resources with which we could later have equipped our negotiators. For it was clear from the start that one day the question of this territory occupied by France would be settled at some conference table. But we had to be equally clear on the fact that even the best negotiators can achieve little success, as long as the ground on which they stand and the chair on which they sit is not the shield arm of their nation. A feeble little tailor cannot argue with athletes, and a defenseless negotiator has always suffered the sword of Brennus on the opposing side of the scale, unless he had his own to throw in as a counterweight. Or has it not been miserable to watch the comic-opera negotiations which since 1918 have always preceded the repeated dictates? This degrading spectacle presented to the whole world, first inviting us to the conference table, as though in mockery, then presenting us with decisions and programs prepared long before, which, to be sure, could be discussed, but which from the start could only be regarded as unalterable. It is true that our negotiators, in hardly a single case, rose above the most humble average, and for the most part justified only too well the insolent utterance of Lloyd George, who contemptuously remarked, a propos of former Reich Minister Simon, ' that the Germans didn't know how to choose men of intelligence as their leaders and representatives.' But even geniuses, in view of the enemy's determined will to power and the miserable defenselessness of our own people in every respect, would have achieved but little.
But anyone who in the spring of 1923 wanted to make France's occupation of the Ruhr an occasion for reviving our military implements of power had first to give the nation its spiritual weapons, strengthen its will power, and destroy the corrupters of this most precious national strength.
Just as in 1918 we paid with our blood for the fact that in 1914 and 1915 we did not proceed to trample the head of the Marxist serpent once and for all, we would have to pay most catastrophically if in the spring of 1923 we did not avail ourselves of the opportunity to halt the activity of the Marxist traitors and murderers of the nation for good.
Any idea of real resistance to France was utter nonsense if we did not declare war against those forces which five years before had broken German resistance on the battlefields from within. Only bourgeois minds can arrive at the incredible opinion that Marxism might now have changed, and that the scoundrelly leaders of 1918, who then coldly trampled two million dead underfoot, the better to climb into the various seats of government, now in 1923 were suddenly ready to render their tribute to the national conscience. An incredible and really insane idea, the hope that the traitors of former days would suddenly turn into fighters for a German freedom. It never entered their heads. No more than a hyena abandons carrion does a Marxist abandon treason. And don't annoy me, if you please, with the stupidest of all arguments, that, after all, so many workers bled for Germany. German workers, yes, but then they were no longer international Marxists. If in 1914 the German working class in their innermost convictions had still consisted of Marxists, the War would have been over in three weeks. Germany would have collapsed even before the first soldier set foot across the border. No, the fact that the German people was then still fighting proved that the Marxist delusion had not yet been able to gnaw its way into the bottommost depths. But in exact proportion as, in the course of the War, the German worker and the German soldier fell back into the hands of the Marxist leaders, in exactly that proportion he was lost to the fatherland. If at the beginning of the War and during the War twelve or fifteen thousand of these Hebrew corrupters of the people had been held under poison gas, as happened to hundreds of thousands of our very best German workers in the field, th sacrifice of millions at the front would not have been in vain. On the contrary: twelve thousand scoundrels eliminated in time might have saved the lives of a million real Germans, valuable for the future. But it just happened to be in the line of bourgeois 'statesmanship' to subject millions to a bloody end on the battlefield without batting an eyelash, but to regard ten or twelve thousand traitors, profiteers, usurers, and swindlers as a sacred national treasure and openly proclaim their inviolability. We never know which is greater in this bourgeois world, the imbecility, weakness, and cowardice, or their deep-dyed corruption. It is truly a class doomed by Fate, but unfortunately, however, it is dragging a whole nation with it into the abyss.
And in 1923 we faced exactly the same situation as in 1918. Regardless what type of resistance was decided on, the first requirement was always the elimination of the Marxist poison from our national body. And in my opinion, it was then the very first task of a truly national government to seek and find the forces which were resolved to declare a war of annihilation on Marxism, and then to give these forces a free road; it was their duty not to worship the idiocy of 'law and order' at a moment when the enemy without was administering the most annihilating blow to the fatherland and at home treason lurked on every street corner. No, at that time a really national government should have desired disorder and unrest, provided only that amid the confusion a basic reckoning with Marxism at last became possible and actually took place. If this were not done, any thought of resistance, regardless of what type, was pure madness.
Such a reckoning of real world-historical import, it must be admitted, does not follow the schedules of a privy councilor or some dried-up old minister, but the eternal laws of life on this earth, which are the struggle for this life and which remain struggle. It should have been borne in mind that the bloodiest civil wars have often given rise to a steeled and healthy people, while artificially cultivated states of peace have more than once produced a rottenness that stank to high Heaven. You do not alter the destinies of nations in kid gloves. And so, in the year 1923, the most brutal thrust was required to seize the vipers that were devouring our people. Only if this were successful did the preparation of active resistance have meaning.
At that time I often talked my throat hoarse, attempting to make it clear, at least to the so-called national circles, what was now at stake, and that, if we made the same blunders as in 1914 and the years that followed, the end would inevitably be the same as in 1918. Again and again, I begged them to give free rein to :Pate, and to give our movement an opportunity for a reckoning with Marxism; but I preached to deaf ears. They all knew better, including the chief of the armed forces, until at length they faced the most wretched capitulation of all time.
Then I realized in my innermost.soul that the German bourgeoisie was at the end of its mission and is destined for no further mission. Then I saw how all these parties continued to bicker with the Marxists only out of competitors' envy, without any serious desire to annihilate them; at heart they had all of them long since reconciled themselves to the destruction of the fatherland, and what moved them was only grave concern that they themselves should be able to partake in the funeral feast. That is all they were still 'fighting' for.
In this period-I openly admit-I conceived the profoundest admiration for the great man south of the Alps, who, full of ardent love for his people, made no pacts with the enemies of Italy, but strove for their annihilation by all ways and means. What will rank Mussolini among the great men of this earth is his determination not to share Italy with the Marxists, but to destroy internationalism and save the fatherland from it.
How miserable and dwarfish our German would-be statesmen seem by comparison, and how one gags with disgust when these nonentities, with boorish arrogance, dare to criticize this man who is a thousand times greater than they; and how painful it is to think that this is happening in a land which barely half a century ago could call a Bismarck its leader.
In view of this attitude on the part of the bourgeoisie and the policy of leaving the Marxists untouched, the fate of any active resistance in 1923 was decided in advance. To fight France with the deadly enemy in our own ranks would have been sheer idiocy. What was done after that could at most be shadow-boxing, staged to satisfy the nationalistic element in Germany in some measure, or in reality to dupe the 'seething soul of the people.' If they had seriously believed in what they were doing, they would have had to recognize that the strength of a nation lies primarily, not in its weapons, but in its will, and that, before foreign enemies are conquered, the enemy within must be annihilated; otherwise God help us if victory does not reward our arms on the very first day. Once so much as the shadow of a defeat grazes a people that is not free of internal enemies, its force of resistance will break and the foe will be the final victor.
This could be predicted as early as February, 1923. Let no one mention the questionableness of a military success against France ! For if the result of the German action in the face of the invasion of the Ruhr had only been the destruction of Marxism at home, by that fact alone success would have been on our side. A Germany saved from these mortal enemies of her existence and her future would possess forces which the whole world could no longer have stifled. On the day when Marxism is smashed in Germany, her fetters wig in truth be broken forever. For never in our history have we been defeated by the strength of our foes, but always by our own vices and by the enemies in our own camp.
Since the leaders of the German state could not summon up the courage for such a heroic deed, logically they could only have chosen the first course, that of doing nothing at all and letting things slide.
But in the great hour Heaven sent the German people a great man, Herr von Cuno. He was not really a statesman or a politician by profession, and of course still less by birth; he was a kind of political hack, who was needed only for the performance of certain definite jobs; otherwise he was really more adept at business. A curse for Germany, because this businessman in politics regarded politics as an economic enterprise and acted accordingly.
'France has occupied the Ruhr; what is in the Ruhr? Coal. Therefore, France has occupied the Ruhr on account of the coal.' What was more natural for Herr Cuno than the idea of striking in order that the French should get no coal, whereupon, in the opinion of Herr Cuno, they would one day evacuate the Ruhr when the enterprise proved unprofitable. Such, more or less, was this 'eminent"national"statesman,' who in Stuttgart and elsewhere was allowed to address his people, and whom the people gaped at in blissful admiration.
But for a strike, of course, the Marxists were needed, for it was primarily the workers who would have to strike. Therefore, it was necessary to bring the worker (and in the brain of one of these bourgeois statesman he is always synonymous with the Marxist) into a united front with all the other Germans. The way these moldy political party cheeses glowed at the sound of such a brilliant slogan was something to behold! Not only a product of genius, it was national at the same time-there at last they had what at heart they had been seeking the whole while. The bridge to Marxism had been found, and the national swindler was enabled to put on a Teutonic face and mouth German phrases while holding out a friendly hand to the international traitor. And the traitor seized it with the utmost alacrity. For just as Cuno needed the Marxist leaders for his 'united front,' the Marxist leaders were just as urgently in need of Cuno's money. So it was a help to both parties. Cuno obtained his united front, formed of national windbags and anti-national scoundrels, and the international swindlers received state funds to carry out the supreme mission of their struggle-that is, to destroy the national economy, and this time actually at the expense of the state. An immortal idea, to save the nation by buying a general strike; in any case a slogan in which even the most indifferent good-fornothing could join with full enthusiasm.
It is generally known that a nation cannot be made free by prayers. But maybe one could be made free by sitting with folded arms, and that had to be historically tested. If at that time Berr Cuno, instead of proclaiming his subsidized general strike and setting it up as the foundation of the 'united front,' had only demanded two more hours of work from every German, the 'united front' swindle would have shown itself up on the third day. Peoples are not freed by doing nothing, but by sacrifices..
To be sure, this so-called passive resistance as such could not be maintained for long. For only a man totally ignorant of warfare could imagine that occupying armies can be frightened away by such ridiculous means. And that alone could have been the sense of an action the costs of which ran into billions and which materially helped to shatter the national currency to its very foundations.
Of course, the French could make themselves at home in the Ruhr with a certain sense of inner relief as soon as they saw the resisters employing such methods. They had in fact obtained from us the best directions for bringing a recalcitrant civilian population to reason when its conduct represents a serious menace to the occupation authorities. With what lightning speed, after all, we had routed the Belgian franc-tireur bands nine years previous and made the seriousness of the situation clear to the civilian population when the German armies ran the risk of incurring serious damage from their activity. As soon as the passive resistance in the Ruhr had grown really dangerous to the French, it would have been child's play for the troops of occupation to put a cruel end to the whole childish mischief in less than a week. For the ultimate question is always this: What do we do if the passive resistance ends by really getting on an adversary's nerves and he takes up the struggle against it with brutal strong-arm methods? Are we then resolved to offer further resistance? If so, we must for better or worse invite the gravest, bloodiest persecutions. But then we stand exactly where active resistance would put us - face to Mace with struggle. Hence any so-called passive resistance has an inner meaning only if it is backed by determination to continue it if necessary in open struggle or in undercover guerrilla warfare. In general, any such struggle will depend on a conviction that success is possible. As soon as a besieged fortress under heavy attack by the enemy is forced to abandon the last hope of relief, for all practical purposes it gives up the fight, especially when in such a case the defender is lured by the certainty of life rather than probable death. Rob the garrison of a surrounded fortress of faith in a possible liberation, and all the forces of defense will abruptly collapse.
Therefore, a passive resistance in the Ruhr, in view of the ultimate consequences it could and inevitably would produce in case it were actually successful, only had meaning if an active front were built up behind it. Then, it is true, there is no limit to what could have been drawn from our people. If every one of these Westphalians had known that the homeland was setting up an army of eighty or a hundred divisions, the Frenchmen would have found it thorny going. There are always more courageous men willing to sacrifice themselves for success than for something that is obviously futile.
It was a classical case which forced us National Socialists to take the sharpest position against a so-called national slogan. And so we did. In these months I was attacked no little by men whose whole national attitude was nothing but a mixture of stupidity and outward sham, all of whom joined in the shouting only because they were unable to resist the agreeable thrill of suddenly being able to put on national airs without any danger. I regarded this most lamentable of all united fronts as a most ridiculous phenomenon, and history has proved me right.
As soon as the unions had filled their treasuries with Cuno's funds, and the passive resistance was faced with the decision of passing from defense with folded arms to active attack, the Red hyenas immediately bolted from the national sheep herd and became again what they had always been. Quietly and ingloriously Herr Cuno retreated to his ships, and Germany was richer by one experience and poorer by one great hope.
Down to late midsummer many officers, and they were assuredly not the worst, had at heart not believed in such a disgraceful development. They had all hoped that, if not openly, in secret at least, preparations had been undertaken to make this insolent French assault a turning point in German history. Even in our ranks there were many who put their confidence at least in the Reichswehr. And this conviction was so alive that it decisively determined the actions and particularly the training of innumerable young people.
But when the disgraceful collapse occurred and the crushing, disgraceful capitulation followed, the sacrifice of billions of marks and thousands of young Germans-who had been stupid enough to take the promises of the Reich's leaders seriously- indignation flared into a blaze against such a betrayal of our unfortunate people. In millions of minds the conviction suddenly arose bright and clear that only a radical elimination of the whole ruling system could save Germany.
Never was the time riper, never did it cry out more imperiously for such a solution than in the moment when, on the one hand, naked treason shamelessly revealed itself, while, on the other hand, a people was economically delivered to slow starvation. Since the state itself trampled all laws of loyalty and faith underfoot, mocked the rights of its citizens, cheated millions of its truest sons of their sacrifices and robbed millions of others of their last penny, it had no further right to expect anything but hatred of its subjects. And in any event, this hatred against the spoilers of people and fatherland was pressing toward an explosion. In this place I can only point to the final sentence of my last speech in the great trial of spring, 1924:
'The judges of this state may go right ahead and convict us for our actions at that time, but History, acting as the goddess of a higher truth and a higher justice, will one day smilingly tear up this verdict, acquitting us of all guilt and blame.'
And then she will call all those before her judgment seat, who today, in possession of power, trample justice and law underfoot, who have led our people into misery and ruin and amid the misfortune of the fatherland have valued their own ego above the life of the community.
In this place I shall not continue with an account of those events which led to and brought about the 8th of November, 1923. I shall not do so because in so doing I see no promise for the future, and because above all it is useless to reopen wounds that seem scarcely healed; moreover, because it is useless to speak of guilt regarding men who in the bottom of their hearts, perhaps, were all devoted to their nation with equal love, and who only missed or failed to understand the common road.
In view of the great common misfortune of our fatherland, I today no longer wish to wound and thus perhaps alienate those who one day in the future will have to form the great united front of those who are really true Germans at heart against the common front of the enemies of our people. For I know that some day the time will come when even those who then faced us with hostility, will think with veneration of those who traveled the bitter road of death for their German people.
I wish at the end of the second volume to remind the supporters and champions of our doctrine of those eighteen I heroes, to whom I have dedicated the first volume of my work, those heroes who sacrificed themselves for us all with the clearest consciousness. They must forever recall the wavering and the weak to the fulfillment of his duty, a duty which they themselves in the best faith carried to its final consequence. And among them I want also to count that man, one of the best, who devoted his life to the awakening of his, our people, in his writings and his thoughts and finally in his deeds:

Conclusion

ON NOVEMBER 9, 1923, in the fourth year of its existence, the National Socialist German Workers' Party was dissolved and prohibited in the whole Reich territory. Today in November, 1926, it stands again free before us, stronger and inwardly firmer than ever before.
All the persecutions of the movement and its individual leaders, all vilifications and slanders, were powerless to harm it. The correctness of its ideas, the purity of its will, its supporters' spirit of self-sacrifice, have caused it to issue from all repressions stronger than ever.
If, in the world of our present parliamentary corruption, it becomes more and more aware of the profoundest essence of its struggle, feels itself to be the purest embodiment of the value of race and personality and conducts itself accordingly, it will with almost mathematical certainty some day emerge victorious from its struggle. Just as Germany must inevitably win her rightful position on this earth if she is led and organized according to the same principles.
A state which in this age of racial poisoning dedicates itself to the care of its best racial elements must some day become lord of the earth.
May the adherents of our movement never forget this if ever the magnitude of the sacrifices should beguile them to an anxious comparison with the possible results.


Conclusion


On November 9, 1923, in the fourth year of its existence, the National Socialist German Workers' Party was dissolved and prohibited in the whole Reich territory. Today in November, 1926, it stands again free before us, stronger and inwardly firmer than every before.
All the persecutions of the movement and its individual leaders, all vilifications and slanders, were powerless to harm it. The correctness of its ideas, the purity of its will, its supporters' spirit of self-sacrifice, have caused it to issue from all repressions strong than ever.
If, in the world of our present parliamentary corruption, it becomes more and more aware of the profoundest essence of its struggle, feels itself to be the purest embodiment of the value of race and personality and conducts itself accordingly, it will with almost mathematical certainty some day emerge victorious from its struggle. Just as Germany must inevitably win her rightful position on this earth if she is led and organized according to the same principles.
A state which in this age of racial poisoning dedicates itself to the care of its best racial elements must some day become lord of the earth.
May the adherents of our movement never forget this if ever the magnitude of the sacrifices should beguile them to an anxious comparison with the possible results.


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