Initially membership was only open to people of Germanic "Aryan" origin, who were said to be the Herrenvolk(master race), according to Nazi racial ideology. The rules were partially relaxed in 1940, although groups considered by Nazis to be "sub-human" like ethnic Poles or Jews remained excluded. Hitler authorized the formation of units composed largely or solely of foreign volunteers and conscripts. Foreign SS units were made up from recruits in Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium (both Wallonia and Flanders), Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Galicia, Georgia, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia (including Cossack and Tatar, Turkic SSR Republics), Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine, Independent State of Croatia, Asian Regiment, Arab Regiment, USA (15-20 volunteers) and a small number of British troops.
At the post-war Nuremberg trials the Waffen-SS was condemned as a criminal organisation due to its connection to the Nazi Party and involvement in numerous war crimes. Waffen-SS veterans were denied many of the rights afforded to veterans who had served in the Heer (army), Luftwaffe(air force) or Kriegsmarine (navy). An exception was made for Waffen-SS conscripts sworn in after 1943, who were exempted because of their involuntary servitude.
Hitler tells Reichstag: “bombs will be met with bombs".
By Our Own Correspondent, Berlin
7:43PM BST 31 Aug 2009
Article first published in the Daily Telegraph, Sept 2, 1939
Herr Hitler to-day addressed the Reichstag, which met in the Kroll Opera House. The diplomats’ box was filled as he entered, followed by Field Marshal Goering, and he was greeted with a loud burst of cheering.
In opening the proceedings, Marshal Goering said: “More than 100 members are not among us because they are standing alongside the soldiers of the German army. They will do their duty and the German Reichstag will do its duty now.”
As Herr Hitler rose to speak there was more cheering. He said:
For months we have been suffering under the torture of a problem which the Versailles Treaty created – a problem which has deteriorated until it becomes intolerable for us.
Danzig was and is a German city. The Corridor was and is German. Both these territories hold their cultural development exclusively to the German people. Danzig was separated from us. The Corridor was annexed by Poland. As in other German territories of the East, all German minorities living there have been ill treated in the most distressing manner.
More than a million people of German blood had, in the years 1919-1920, to leave their homeland. As always, I attempted to bring about, by the peaceful method of making proposals for revision, an alteration of this intolerable position.
It is a lie when the outside world said that we only tried to carry through our revisions by pressure.
Fifteen years before the National Socialist party came to power there was the opportunity of carrying out these revisions by peaceful settlements and understanding. On my own initiative I have, not once but several times, made proposals for the revision of intolerable conditions.
All these proposals, as you know, have been rejected – proposals for limitation of armaments and even, if necessary, disarmament, proposals for the limitation of certain methods of modern warfare.
You know the proposals that I have made to fulfil the necessity of restoring German sovereignty over German territories.
You know the endless attempts I made for a peaceful clarification and understanding of the problem of Austria and later of the problem of the Sudetenland. Bohemia and Moravia. It was all in vain.
‘Versailles not law to us’ - “signature obtained by force”
It is impossible to demand that an impossible position should be cleared up by peaceful revision and at the same time constantly reject peaceful revision. It is also impossible to say that he who undertakes to carry out these revisions for himself transgresses a law, since the Versailles “Diktat” is not law to us.
A signature was forced out of us with pistols at our head and with the threat of hunger for millions of people. And then this document, with our signature, obtained by force, was proclaimed as a solemn law.
In the same way I have also tried to solve the problem of Danzig the Corridor, and so on, by proposing a peaceful discussion.
That the problems had to be solved was clear. It is quite understandable to us that the time when the problem was to be solved had little interest for the Western Powers. But that time is not a matter of indifference to us.
Moreover, it was not, and could not be, a matter of indifference to those who suffer most.
In my talks with Polish statesmen I discussed the ideas which you recognise from my last speech to the Reichstag. No one could say that this was in any way an inadmissible procedure or undue pressure.
I then naturally formulated at last the German proposals, and I must once more repeat that there is nothing more modest or loyal than these proposals.
I should like to say this to the world. I alone was in the position to make such proposals, for I know very well that in doing so I brought myself into opposition to millions of Germans.
These proposals have been refused. Not only were they answered first with mobilisation, but with increased terror and pressure against our German compatriots, of Danzig – economically, politically, and in recent weeks, by military and transport means.
Poland has directed its attacks against the free city of Danzig.
Moreover, Poland was not prepared to settle the Corridor question in its reasonable way which would be equitable to both parties, and she did not think of keeping her obligations to minorities.
I must here state something definitely: Germany has kept these obligations: the minorities who live in Germany are not persecuted.
No Frenchman can stand up and say that any Frenchman living in the Saar territory is oppressed, tortured or deprived of his rights. Nobody can say this.
For four months I have calmly watched developments, although I never ceased to give warnings. In the last few days I have increased these warnings.
I informed the Polish Ambassador three weeks ago that if Poland continued to send to Danzig notes in the form of ultimatums, if Poland continued its methods of oppression against the Germans, and if on the Polish side an end was not put to Customs measures destined to ruin Danzig’s trade, then the Reich could not remain inactive.
Blaming Poland - failure of mediation proposals
I left no doubt that people who wanted to compare the Germany of to-day with the former Germany would be deceiving themselves.
An attempt was made to justify the oppression of the Germans by claiming that they had committed acts of provocation.
I do not know in what these provocations on the part of women and children consist, if they themselves are maltreated, in some cases killed. One thing I do know – that no great Power can with honour long stand by passively and watch such events.
I made one more final effort to accept a proposal for mediation on the part of the British Government. They proposed, not that they themselves should carry on the negotiations, but rather that Poland and Germany should come into direct contact and once more to pursue negotiations.
I must declare that I accepted this proposal, and I worked out a basis for these negotiations which are known to you.
For two whole days I sat with my Government and waited to see whether it was convenient for the Polish Government to send a plenipotentiary or not.
Last night they did not send us a plenipotentiary but instead informed us through their Ambassador that they were still considering whether and to what extent they were in a position to go into the British proposals.
The Polish Government also said that they would inform Britain of their decision.
Deputies, if the German Government and its leader patiently endured such treatment, Germany would deserve only to disappear from the political stage. But I am wrongly judged and if my love of peace and my patience are mistaken for weakness or even cowardice. I therefore decided last night, and informed the British Government that in these circumstances I can no longer find any willingness on the part of the Polish Government to conduct serious negotiations with us.
These proposals for mediation have failed because in the meanwhile there first of all came as an answer the sudden Polish general mobilisation, followed by more Polish atrocities. These were repeated last night.
Recently, in one night, there were as many as 21 frontier incidents: last night there were 14, of which three were quite serious.
I have, therefore, resolved to speak to Poland in the same language that Poland for months past has used towards us.
Italy thanked - no appeal for foreign help
When statesmen in the West declare that this affects their interests. I can only regret such a declaration. It cannot for a moment make me hesitate to fulfil my duty.
What more is wanted? I have solemnly assured them, and I repeat it, that we ask nothing of these Western States and never will ask anything. I have declared that the frontier between France and Germany is a final one.
I have repeatedly offered friendship and, if necessary, the closest co-operation to Britain, but this cannot be offered from one side only. It must find response on the other side.
Germany has no interests in the West, and our Western Wall is for all time the frontier of the Reich on the West. Moreover, we have no aims of any kind there for the future. This attitude on the part of the Reich will not change.
The other European States understand in part our attitude. I should like here above all, to thank Italy, which throughout has supported us, but you will understand that for the carrying on of this struggle we do not intend to appeal for foreign help.
We will carry out this task ourselves. The neutral States have assured us of their neutrality, just as we had already guaranteed it to them.
With this assurance we are in solemn earnest, and as long as others do not violate their neutrality, we will likewise take every care to respect it.
I am happy particularly to be able to tell you of one event. You know that Russia and Germany are governed by two different doctrines. There was only one question that had to be cleared up.
Germany has no intention of exporting its doctrine. Given the face that Soviet Russia has no intention of exporting its doctrine to Germany. I no longer see any reason why we should still oppose one another. On both sides we are clear on that.
Any struggle between our people would only be of advantage to others. We have therefore, resolved to conclude a pact which rules out forever any use of violence between us.
Only military objectives - “whoever fights with gas”
It imposes the obligation on us to consult together in certain European questions. It makes possible for us economic co-operation, and above all it assures that the powers of both these powerful States are not wasted against one another.
Every attempt of the West to bring about any change in this will fail.
At the same time, I should like here to declare that this political decision means a tremendous departure for the future, and that it is a final one.
Russia and Germany fought against one another in the world war. That shall and will not happen a second time.
In Moscow too this part was greeted exactly as you greet it. I can only endorse word for word the speech of the Russian Foreign Commissary Molotov.
I am determined to solve (1) the Danzig question, (3) the question of the Corridor, and (3) to see to it that a change is made in the relationship between Germany and Poland that shall ensure a peaceful co-existence.
In this I am resolved to continue the fight until either the present Polish Government is willing to bring about the change or until another Polish Government is ready to do so.
I am resolved to remove from the German frontiers the element of uncertainty, the everlasting atmosphere of conditions resembling civil war. I will see to it that in the East there is, on the frontier, a peace precisely similar to that on our other frontiers.
In this I will take the necessary measures to see that they do not contradict the proposals I have already made known in the Reichstag itself to the rest of the world; that is to say I will not war against women and children.
I have ordered my Air Force to restrict itself to attacks on military objectives. If, however, the enemy thinks he can from that draw carte blanche on his side to fight by the other methods, he will receive an answer that will deprive him of hearing and sight.
This night for the first time Polish regular soldiers fired on our own territory. Since 5.45 a.m. we have been returning the fire. And, from now on, bombs will be met with bombs. Whoever fights with poison gas will be fought with poison gas. Whoever departs from the rules of humane warfare can only expect that we shall do the same.
I will continue this struggle, no matter against whom, until the safety of the Reich and its rights are secured.
Goering as successor - “should anything happen to me”
For six years now I have been working on the building up of the German defences. Or 90 milliards have in that time been spent on the building up of these defence forces. They are now the best equipped, and are above all comparison with what they were in 1914.
My trust in them is unshakable. When I called up these forces, and when I now ask sacrifices of the German people, and if necessary every sacrifice, then I have a right to do so, for I also am to-day absolutely ready, just as we were formerly, to make every personal sacrifice.
I am asking of no German man more than I myself was ready throughout four years at any time to do. There will be no hardships for Germans to which I myself will not submit. My whole life henceforth belongs more than ever to my people.
I am from now on just First Soldier of the German Reich. I have once more put on that coat that was the most sacred and dear to me. I will not take it off again until victory is secured or I will not survive the outcome.
Should anything happen to me in the struggle then my first successor is Party Comrade Goering. Should anything happen to Party Comrade Goering my next successor is Party Comrade Hess. You would then be under obligation to give to them as Fuehrer the same blind loyalty and obedience as to myself.
Should anything happen to Party Comrade Hess, then by law the Senate will be called and will choose from its midst the most worthy – that is to say, the bravest successor.
As a National Socialist and as German soldier I enter upon this struggle with a stout heart. My whole life has been nothing but one long struggle for my people, for its restoration and for Germany.
There was only one watchword for that struggle, faith in this people. One word I have never learned, that is, surrender.
If, however, anyone thinks that we are facing a hard time, I should ask him to remember that once a Prussian King with a ridiculously small State opposed a stronger coalition, and in three wars finally came out successful because that State had that stout heart that we need in these times.
I would, therefore, like to assure all the world that a November 1918 will never be repeated in German history.
Just as I myself am ready at any time to stake my life – anyone can take it for my people and for Germany – so I ask the same of all others.
Whoever thinks he can oppose this national command, whether directly or indirectly, he shall fall. We have nothing to do with traitors.
We are all faithful to our old principle. It is quite unimportant whether we ourselves live, but it is essential that our people shall live, that Germany shall live.
The sacrifice that is demanded of us is not greater than the sacrifice that many generations have made.
If we form a community closely bound together by vows, ready for anything, resolved never to surrender, then our will will master every hardship and difficulty.
And I would like to close with the declaration that I once made when I began the struggle for power in the Reich. I then said: “If our will is so strong that no hardship and suffering can subdue it, then our will and our German might shall prevail.”
Herr Hitler then moved a Bill entitled “The Law for the Reunion of Danzig with the German Reich”. It was passed with acclamation. – Reuter and British United Press.
For months we have been suffering under the torture of a problem which the Versailles Diktat created - a problem which has deteriorated until it becomes intolerable for us. Danzig was and is a German city. The Corridor was and is German. Both these territories owe their cultural development exclusively to the German people. Danzig was separated from us, the Corridor was annexed by Poland. As in other German territories of the East, all German minorities living there have been ill-treated in the most distressing manner. More than 1,000,000 people of German blood had in the years 1919-1920 to leave their homeland.
As always, I attempted to bring about, by the peaceful method of making proposals for revision, an alteration of this intolerable position. It is a lie when the outside world says that we only tried to carry through our revisions by pressure. Fifteen years before the National Socialist Party came to power there was the opportunity of carrying out these revisions by peaceful settlements and understanding. On my own initiative I have, not once but several times, made proposals for the revision of intolerable conditions. All these proposals, as you know, have been rejected - proposals for limitation of armaments and even, if necessary, disarmament, proposals for limitation of warmaking, proposals for the elimination of certain methods of modern warfare. You know the proposals that I have made to fulfill the necessity of restoring German sovereignty over German territories. You know the endless attempts I made for a peaceful clarification and understanding of the problem of Austria, and later of the problem of the Sudetenland, Bohemia, and Moravia. It was all in vain.
It is impossible to demand that an impossible position should be cleared up by peaceful revision and at the same time constantly reject peaceful revision. It is also impossible to say that he who undertakes to carry out these revisions for himself transgresses a law, since the Versailles Diktat is not law to us. A signature was forced out of us with pistols at our head and with the threat of hunger for millions of people. And then this document, with our signature, obtained by force, was proclaimed as a solemn law.
In the same way, I have also tried to solve the problem of Danzig, the Corridor, etc., by proposing a peaceful discussion. That the problems had to be solved was clear. It is quite understandable to us that the time when the problem was to be solved had little interest for the Western Powers. But that time is not a matter of indifference to us. Moreover, it was not and could not be a matter of indifference to those who suffer most.
In my talks with Polish statesmen I discussed the ideas which you recognize from my last speech to the Reichstag. No one could say that this was in any way an inadmissible procedure on undue pressure. I then naturally formulated at last the German proposals, and I must once more repeat that there is nothing more modest or loyal than these proposals. I should like to say this to the world. I alone was in the position to make such proposal, for I know very well that in doing so I brought myself into opposition to millions of Germans. These proposals have been refused. Not only were they answered first with mobilization, but with increased terror and pressure against our German compatriots and with a slow strangling of the Free City of Danzig - economically, politically, and in recent weeks by military and transport means.
Poland has directed its attacks against the Free City of Danzig. Moreover, Poland was not prepared to settle the Corridor question in a reasonable way which would be equitable to both parties, and she did not think of keeping her obligations to minorities.
I must here state something definitely; German has kept these obligations; the minorities who live in Germany are not persecuted. No Frenchman can stand up and say that any Frenchman living in the Saar territory is oppressed, tortured, or deprived of his rights. Nobody can say this.
For four months I have calmly watched developments, although I never ceased to give warnings. In the last few days I have increased these warnings. I informed the Polish Ambassador three weeks ago that if Poland continued to send to Danzig notes in the form of ultimata, and if on the Polish side an end was not put to Customs measures destined to ruin Danzig's trade, then the Reich could not remain inactive. I left no doubt that people who wanted to compare the Germany of to-day with the former Germany would be deceiving themselves.
An attempt was made to justify the oppression of the Germans by claiming that they had committed acts of provocation. I do not know in what these provocations on the part of women and children consist, if they themselves are maltreated, in some cases killed. One thing I do know - that no great Power can with honour long stand by passively and watch such events.
I made one more final effort to accept a proposal for mediation on the part of the British Government. They proposed, not that they themselves should carry on the negotiations, but rather that Poland and Germany should come into direct contact and once more pursue negotiations.
I must declare that I accepted this proposal, and I worked out a basis for these negotiations which are known to you. For two whole days I sat in my Government and waited to see whether it was convenient for the Polish Government to send a plenipotentiary or not. Last night they did not send us a plenipotentiary, but instead informed us through their Ambassador that they were still considering whether and to what extent they were in a position to go into the British proposals. The Polish Government also said that they would inform Britain of their decision.
Deputies, if the German Government and its Leader patiently endured such treatment Germany would deserve only to disappear from the political stage. But I am wrongly judged if my love of peace and my patience are mistaken for weakness or even cowardice. I, therefore, decided last night and informed the British Government that in these circumstances I can no longer find any willingness on the part of the Polish Government to conduct serious negotiations with us.
These proposals for mediation have failed because in the meanwhile there, first of all, came as an answer the sudden Polish general mobilization, followed by more Polish atrocities. These were again repeated last night. Recently in one night there were as many as twenty-one frontier incidents: last night there were fourteen, of which three were quite serious. I have, therefore, resolved to speak to Poland in the same language that Poland for months past has used toward us. This attitude on the part of the Reich will not change.
The other European States understand in part our attitude. I should like here above all to thank Italy, which throughout has supported us, but you will understand that for the carrying on of this struggle we do not intend to appeal to foreign help. We will carry out this task ourselves. The neutral States have assured us of their neutrality, just as we had already guaranteed it to them.
When statesmen in the West declare that this affects their interests, I can only regret such a declaration. It cannot for a moment make me hesitate to fulfill my duty. What more is wanted? I have solemnly assured them, and I repeat it, that we ask nothing of those Western States and never will ask anything. I have declared that the frontier between France and Germany is a final one. I have repeatedly offered friendship and, if necessary, the closest co-operation to Britain, but this cannot be offered from one side only. It must find response on the other side. Germany has no interests in the West, and our western wall is for all time the frontier of the Reich on the west. Moreover, we have no aims of any kind there for the future. With this assurance we are in solemn earnest, and as long as others do not violate their neutrality we will likewise take every care to respect it.
I am happy particularly to be able to tell you of one event. You know that Russia and Germany are governed by two different doctrines. There was only one question that had to be cleared up. Germany has no intention of exporting its doctrine. Given the fact that Soviet Russia has no intention of exporting its doctrine to Germany. I no longer see any reason why we should still oppose one another. On both sides we are clear on that. Any struggle between our people would only be of advantage to others. We have, therefore, resolved to conclude a pact which rules out for ever any use of violence between us. It imposes the obligation on us to consult together in certain European questions. It makes possible for us economic co-operation, and above all it assures that the powers of both these powerful States are not wasted against one another. Every attempt of the West to bring about any change in this will fail.
At the same time I should like here to declare that this political decision means a tremendous departure for the future, and that it is a final one. Russia and Germany fought against one another in the World War. That shall and will not happen a second time. In Moscow, too, this pact was greeted exactly as you greet it. I can only endorse word for word the speech of Russian Foreign Commissar, Molotov.
I am determined to solve (1) the Danzig question; (2) the question of the Corridor; and (3) to see to it that a change is made in the relationship between Germany and Poland that shall ensure a peaceful co-existence. In this I am resolved to continue to fight until either the present Polish government is willing to continue to bring about this change or until another Polish Government is ready to do so. I am resolved t remove from the German frontiers the element of uncertainty, the everlasting atmosphere of conditions resembling civil war. I will see to it that in the East there is, on the frontier, a peace precisely similar to that on our other frontiers.
In this I will take the necessary measures to se that they do not contradict the proposals I have already made known in the Reichstag itself to the rest of the world, that is to say, I will not war against women and children. I have ordered my air force to restrict itself to attacks on military objectives. If, however, the enemy thinks he can form that draw carte blanche on his side to fight by the other methods he will receive an answer that will deprive him of hearing and sight.
This night for the first time Polish regular soldiers fired on our territory. Since 5.45 A.M. we have been returning the fire, and from now on bombs will be met by bombs. Whoever fight with poison gas will be fought with poison gas. Whoever departs from the rules of humane warfare can only expect that we shall do the same. I will continue this struggle, no matter against whom, until the safety of the Reich and its rights are secured.
For six years now I have been working on the building up of the German defenses. Over 90 millions have in that time been spent on the building up of these defense forces. They are now the best equipped and are above all comparison with what they were in 1914. My trust in them is unshakable. When I called up these forces and when I now ask sacrifices of the German people and if necessary every sacrifice, then I have a right to do so, for I also am to-day absolutely ready, just as we were formerly, to make every possible sacrifice.
I am asking of no German man more than I myself was ready throughout four years at any time to do. There will be no hardships for Germans to which I myself will not submit. My whole life henceforth belongs more than ever to my people. I am from now on just first soldier of the German Reich. I have once more put on that coat that was the most sacred and dear to me. I will not take it off again until victory is secured, or I will not survive the outcome.
Should anything happen to me in the struggle then my first successor is Party Comrade Goring; should anything happen to Party Comrade Goring my next successor is Party Comrade Hess. You would then be under obligation to give to them as Fuhrer the same blind loyalty and obedience as to myself. Should anything happen to Party Comrade Hess, then by law the Senate will be called, and will choose from its midst the most worthy - that is to say the bravest - successor.
As a National Socialist and as German soldier I enter upon this struggle with a stout heart. My whole life has been nothing but one long struggle for my people, for its restoration, and for Germany. There was only one watchword for that struggle: faith in this people. One word I have never learned: that is, surrender.
If, however, anyone thinks that we are facing a hard time, I should ask him to remember that once a Prussian King, with a ridiculously small State, opposed a stronger coalition, and in three wars finally came out successful because that State had that stout heart that we need in these times. I would, therefore, like to assure all the world that a November 1918 will never be repeated in German history. Just as I myself am ready at any time to stake my life - anyone can take it for my people and for Germany - so I ask the same of all others.
Whoever, however, thinks he can oppose this national command, whether directly of indirectly, shall fall. We have nothing to do with traitors. We are all faithful to our old principle. It is quite unimportant whether we ourselves live, but it is essential that our people shall live, that Germany shall live. The sacrifice that is demanded of us is not greater than the sacrifice that many generations have made. If we form a community closely bound together by vows, ready for anything, resolved never to surrender, then our will will master every hardship and difficulty. And I would like to close with the declaration that I once made when I began the struggle for power in the Reich. I then said: "If our will is so strong that no hardship and suffering can subdue it, then our will and our German might shall prevail."
September 1, 1939. 6 am. German troops start moving into Poland
70 years ago on this date, September 2, 1945, World War II Combat ends in the Pacific Theater: the Instrument of Surrender of Japan is signed by Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu and accepted aboard the battleship USS Missouriin Tokyo Bay.
On this date, September 2, 1983, Jimmy Lee Gray was executed by the Gas Chamber in Mississippi. He was the first person executed in that State since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976. He was a recidivist murderer who had killed and was on parole to murder again. I wish they should have kept the Gas Chamber and not change to lethal injection.
Executions in California were carried out in the gas chamber at San Quentin State Prison. It was modified for the use of lethal injection, but has been returned to its original designated purpose, with the creation of a new chamber specifically for lethal injection.
The first year of the war ended in these last days. The second began and with it the new Kriegswinterhilfswerk. The successes of the first year, my Volksgenossen, are unique-so unique in fact that not only our enemies had not envisioned the course of history in this manner, but many in the German Volk were hardly able to comprehend the greatness of the occurrences and the rapidity of events.
We cannot compare the first year of the war to the World War: for in it, despite the greatest of valor, despite the unheard-of, greatest of sacrifices, only partial results were obtained and no one, final solution. This time we need only look at the enormous triangle which is protected by the Wehrmacht today: in the East the Bug; in the North the North Cape, Kirkenes, and Narvik; in the South the border of Spain. A number of our adversaries have been eliminated. And the English owe it only to their fortuitous geographic position and to the enormous rapidity of their escape that they were spared a similar fate until now.
For matters are not standing as several British politicians attempt to portray the situation: that the British Army, tearing at its reins like a wild horse, is aflame with the desire to finally be unleashed, to hurl itself at the German enemy. It was surely close enough to us to satisfy this “desire” without much ado. It withdrew from our vicinity, and thus it is its lot to portray these pitiful retreats as great victories. And this is what all its “successes” look like! Besides the vast area already controlled by German troops at this time, our ally Italy has for its part taken the offensive in East Africa, strengthened its position there, and has beaten England back. Naturally, this is opposed by English “successes.” These are successes which defy comprehension by the normal, healthy human brain. We see time and time again how the English propaganda falls from one extreme to the next, from highs to lows, only to return to even greater highs a few days later.
Thus, one day, we read: “The die has been cast in this war. If the Germans fail to reach Paris-and in this they cannot succeed-then they will have lost the war. Should they still reach Paris, then England will still win the war.” England surely has fought through to many a success of this kind since that September 3. The most glorious of these victories was-although a disgraceful fiasco in our eyes-the flight from Dunkirk. Any port in a storm.
We need only read a British war bulletin to know what all these “successes” amount to. For instance, it says: “We were told that . . .” or “one gains the following information from well-informed circles . . .” or “one hears from knowledgeable officials . . .” or “from expert statements one can infer . .
.” One bulletin even read: “We believe we have cause to be permitted to believe that . . .” In this way any defeat can be transformed into a success! We were just moving into Poland when English propagandists declared that “well-informed circles” had related that the Germans had already suffered a number of grave setbacks: the Poles were victoriously advancing upon Berlin.
Only a few days later, these “well-informed circles” assured us that the tide had turned in the East for good.
Then came equally “well-informed experts” who remarked that, even if Germany should have gained a victory, which was not the case, then this victory was actually a defeat-as seen, naturally, from the viewpoint of higher strategic considerations. When we finally stood before Warsaw, they promptly changed their minds: “ . . . it would be correct to assume that the Allied attack in the West has achieved its first great victory, a breakthrough.” And thus matters went on until there was no more Poland.
And they said: “A great burden has been lifted from our shoulders. This Poland in the East was always a weak point for us. Now we can finally concentrate our efforts on a theater of war where we are superior to the Germans, as they will shortly realize.” Then there was calm for some time. This calm by itself naturally already constituted a consistent success of the British Armed Forces and an equally persistent failure for Germany. While the English worked throughout these months, we apparently slept through them! In this time, the English politicians saw it all, realized it all, and, above all, they grasped everything just in time. In the meanwhile, we missed out on everything.
This was until Norway. When operations began, English war reporters rejoiced at the “colossal mistake” we Germans had supposedly committed.
“Finally the Germans have made a mistake, and now they will have to pay for it,” so they wrote. And they were happy in England that finally they had been afforded the chance to measure themselves with the Germans.
They could have measured themselves with us at any hour, since in the West we lay but a few hundred meters apart. Still they pretended they could not possibly have seen us. And then, for the first time, good fortune afforded them the opportunity, thanks to our foolishness and in particular my own, to oppose us in armed conflict. And the conflict indeed came. It was truly an irony of fate that England owes perhaps the heaviest blow which it was dealt at the time to its very own propaganda.
Namely, as we had beaten the Norwegians back beyond Hamar and Lillehammer, a simple-minded British brigade marched unsuspectingly along the same road to Hamar. They had no connection with the rear, for this rear had been destroyed by our Stukas and fighters. They listened exclusively to British radio. And from the British radio, the commander of the brigade heard that we were far off still, far in front of Lillehammer, or rather, from his point of view, far behind Lillehammer. And that we had suffered a severe defeat.
And thus the British brigade commander marched into Lillehammer at the head of his brigade. There he laid his head to rest, with a chest at his side, filled with documents which read: “Top secret” and “Do not allow to fall into enemy hands.” And that very night, our troops rounded him up, along with his precious Ark of the Covenant. That’s what you get when you rely on Mr. Churchill the war reporter.
And the story was the same all over: they lied and they lied again. They were thrown back into the sea, and this was a “complete and great victory.” When they succeeded in salvaging a bit of rubble from Andalsnes or Namsos, they declared this, before the world, the most mighty success in the modern British history of war. We cannot measure ourselves with something like that, naturally! Still all this is opposed by hard facts: a few weeks later, there was no more Norway and the British Armed Forces were forced to withdraw from this country also.
Then came the hour of the confrontation in the West. And here, too, we did not come too late. For in particular in this campaign, the Allied coalition suffered nothing other than defeat.
The facts-the historic facts-bear witness to this. In spite of this, the campaign also ended in the obligatory great British victory, namely, the magnificent, the glorious feat of arms at Dunkirk. The traces of this glorious military achievement I have seen with my very eyes-it looked rather confused.
Now France has fallen, too. And what rationale has been contrived this time? When Norway had finally been cleansed of the Allies, they had declared: “This was precisely what we wanted. We only wanted to lure the Germans up here. This was a victory, an unequaled victory for us.” After France had been knocked to the ground for good, they had declared: “Now England, for the first time, can concentrate its forces. We are no longer forced to squander our troops and to dissipate our energies. We have now reached the strategic position we have always longed for and hoped for. We are now rid of the burden of France.
It only cost us precious British blood. And now we are in a position to confront the Germans quite differently.” Right at the beginning of the war, they had concerned themselves with certain prophecies regarding the length of the war. They had said: “The war will last three years; Britain will prepare itself for three years.” And rightly so, for these folk, who are immensely rich owners of war production shares, are clever enough to know that their new acquisitions cannot bear interest or be amortized within half a year, or even a year.
Therefore things had to take a bit longer. But I was equally careful and immediately said to the Reichsmarschall at the time: Goring, let us prepare everything for five years! Not because I believe that the war will last five years, but, come what may, England will break down! In one way or another! And I do not know of any deadline other than this one! Of course I will prepare everything in a prudent, cautious, and careful manner. You will understand that.
And when people in England today nosily inquire: “Well, why isn’t he coming?” Calm yourselves: he is coming! Curiosity killed the cat.
The world will be free! The nonsense that it will be possible for one nation to blockade a continent arbitrarily must be done away with. It must be made impossible in the future that such a pirate state, according to disposition and mood, can undertake from time to time to more or less subject 450 million human beings to poverty and misery. We as Germans, for all time, are fed up with having England tell us if we can perhaps do this or that; in the end, if a German is allowed to drink his coffee or not. If England does not like it, then it simply blockades coffee imports. Personally, I am not affected. I do not drink anything. But I am nettled that others should not be able to drink it.
At any rate, I find it insupportable that a nation of eighty-five million should be at the mercy of another people at any time-whenever it suits the plutocrats in London. So often have I extended my hand for an understanding with the English people. You know it yourselves: it was my foreign policy program. I have recently done so for the very last time. I now prefer to fight to finally arrive at a clear decision.
This clear decision can consist only in the removal of this regime of pitiful and base warmongers and in a situation being established in which it will be impossible for one nation to tyrannically run all of Europe in the future.
Here Germany and Italy will take care that history does not repeat itself a second time. And here nothing will help England and its allies: no Emperor Haile Sellassie, no Herr Bene_-nor anyone else: no King Haakon, no Queen Wilhelmina, and no French General de Gaulle. All these allies will be of no help. And whatever other designs they may entertain, or whatever else they may envision in the depth of their hearts-we will be on the lookout, we are ready for anything, determined in everything, and willing to take action at any time.
Nothing frightens us. We German National Socialists have graduated from the toughest school conceivable. First we were soldiers in the Great War, and then we were fighters in the resurgence of Germany. What we had to suffer in these years made us hard. Thus we cannot be intimidated by anything and nothing can surprise us.
When the English entered the war one year ago, they said: “We have an ally.” We were curious to see who that might be. They said: “It is a general, this ally, and his name is General Revolution.” Ha-ha! They have not an inkling of the new National Socialist German Volksstaat. And now London is waiting for this general to commence activities. On September 6, on September 7, nothing happened, and by September 8, there was great disappointment. For, according to their forecasts, this General Revolution was to rise up within a week’s time.
He was nowhere to be found.
Then they said: “We have another allied general; his name is General Hunger.” We had already anticipated that these great friends of humanity would undertake, as in the World War, to starve women and children. And we prepared ourselves. And this general, too, turned out to be a false speculation, a ghost, a jack-o’-lantern in the brain of Mr. Churchill.
Now they have traced a third ally. His name is General Winter. We made his acquaintance once before. And back then he failed, and he will fail and is destined to fail again this time. The English should not forget, if they insist on resorting to such obscure, foreign generals, to promote their own most important General to the rank perhaps of a British Field Marshal: namely, General Bluff. He is their only ally who actually merits so high a distinction. However, this general lacks his former bite. With him you might succeed in deluding the British people, but the German Volk knows England sufficiently well not to be deceived.
The blabbering of a Mr. Churchill or a Mr. Eden-to speak of the old Chamberlain good taste forbids-this blabbering leaves the German Volk cold, and, at best, elicits laughter. In standard German there is no appropriate term for a phenomenon like Duff Cooper. Here you must resort to dialect, and the Bavarian has coined a term which fittingly characterizes the man: Krampfhenne (nervous old hen)! The gentlemen ought to calm down as they cannot win the war with such weapons. The means for this, thank God, lie in our hands and will remain in our hands.
For when the bell tolls, we shall replace the Generals Hunger, Revolution, Winter, or Bluff, with General Action-and then we shall see who will hold his own better! I have already expressed the German Volk’s gratitude to its soldiers before the Reichstag. In these days, we all are moved by gratitude to our Luftwaffe, our valiant heroes, who fly to England day after day, to give our answer there to what the ingenious Mr. Churchill so recently invented. I will speak of this later.
Today I would like to address my thanks to the homeland for the year lying behind us; my thanks to the entire German Volk for the attitude it displayed during the many, not so easy events of this year. For perhaps many do not realize precisely what it means to evacuate, within a few weeks, over 700,000 people. Everything went according to plan. Then, however, everything was well prepared on our side-in contrast to the other side. But what the mass took upon itself in certain instances was often daunting. How it bore up under this truly inspires awe! We are happy that these people can now return to their homeland.
We must also thank those who have taken the most crucial precautions in this homeland, those who were responsible for all of this: the air-raid protection personnel; and, in particular, the colossal organization of the Red Cross, its doctors, its medical personnel, and its nurses. They have accomplished incredible things. Above all, we wish to think of the German woman, of the crowd of millions of German women, German mothers, and also German girls, who had to replace the men working in the cities and in the countryside. They took care of the provision of daily bread and saw to it that the soldier received the necessary weapons and ammunition.
At their side stood the millions of German workers in the ammunition factories, who placed themselves at the disposal of the fighting front, whether young or old, so that it should not be missing any of those items the lack of which led in the end to the breakdown of the year 1918.
It is truly magnificent to see our Volk at war and its total discipline. We realize this all the more in a time when Mr. Churchill is demonstrating to us the use of his invention: the nightly air raid. He does not do this because air raids at night are particularly effective, but because his Air Force cannot penetrate German airspace during the day. While the German pilots, the German planes, fly over English land day by day, no Englishman has yet managed to as much as cross the North Sea by daylight. That is why they come at night and drop their bombs-you know it well-indiscriminately and without plan on civilian residential centers, on farmsteads, and villages.
Wherever they see a light, they drop a bomb.
I did not answer for three months because I was of the opinion that they would ultimately stop this nonsense. Mr. Churchill perceived this as a sign of our weakness. You will surely understand that now we are giving our answers night after night, and this at an increasing rate.
And should the Royal Air Force drop two thousand, or three thousand, or four thousand kilograms of bombs, then we will now drop 150,000; 180,000; 230,000; 300,000; 400,000; yes, one million kilograms in a single night. And should they declare they will greatly increase their attacks on our cities, then we will erase their cities! We will put these nighttime pirates out of business, God help us! The hour will come that one of us will crack, and it will not be National Socialist Germany! In my life, I have once already waged such a fight unto the last. And then the enemy cracked who now has his seat in England as the last available island in Europe. It is precisely in view of this battle that it is all the more necessary to comprehend how important the fashioning and formation of our German Volksgemeinschaft is. We could not have achieved a single thing, if the German soldier had stood at the front, forlorn and on his own, without any connection to kindred souls at home. What makes the German soldier strong at the front is the awareness and knowledge that behind him stands an entire Volk united in iron determination and a fanatical will! And indeed, a Volk in the pursuit of loftier objectives. And these objectives go far beyond the mere winning of this war.
We want to build up a new state! That is why the others hate us so much today. They have often said as much. They said: “Yes, their social experiment is very dangerous! If it takes hold, and our own workers come to see this too, then this will be highly disquieting. It costs billions and does not bring any results. It cannot be expressed in terms of profit, nor of dividends. What is the point?! We are not interested in such a development. We welcome everything which serves the material progress of mankind insofar as this progress translates into economic profit. But social experiments, all they are doing there, this can only lead to the awakening of greed in the masses. Then we will have to descend from our pedestal. They cannot expect this of us.” And we were seen as setting a bad example. Any institution we conceived was rejected, as it served social purposes. They already regarded this as a concession on the way to social legislation and thereby to the type of social development these states loathe. They are, after all, plutocracies in which a tiny clique of capitalists dominate the masses, and this, naturally, in close cooperation with international Jews and Freemasons.
We know these enemies from our inner struggle, our dear old coalition of the System-Deutschland, a part of which has saved itself by swimming ashore.
They hate us because of our social attitude, and everything which we plan and implement based on this appears threatening. They are of the conviction that this development must be eradicated.
I am convinced, however, that the future belongs to this development, and that those states that do not follow suit will, sooner or later, break apart.
If they do not find a reasonable solution, the states with unresolved social problems will, sooner or later, arrive at an insane solution. National Socialism has prevented this in the German Volk. They are now aware of our objectives. They know how persistently and decisively we defend and will reach this goal.
Hence the hatred of all the international plutocrats, the Jewish newspapers, the world stock markets, and hence the sympathy for these democrats in all the countries of a like cast of mind. Because we, however, know that what is at stake in this war is the entire social structure of our Volk, and that this war is being waged against the substance of our life, we must, time and time again in this war of ideals, avow these ideals. And, in this sense, the Winterhilfswerk, this greatest social relief fund there is on this earth, is a mighty demonstration of this spirit.
Any person will judge me quite capable of having gone about the resolution of the financial aspect of this problem in a different manner. We could have generated the income, without much ado, by means of taxation. It would not have been necessary to build up this gigantic organization. We could have accomplished the same through the good offices of civil servants. But while the result might well have been as financially rewarding-perhaps even greater still-in terms of ideals, nothing comparable to what we possess could have been attained.
Thus, the value of this voluntary association of the German Volksgemeinschaft lies in its practical application: for one, the education of the one who gives, but also the education of the other who now voluntarily does the work. For there are two making sacrifices. The one makes a sacrifice in donating, the other in administering this donation and in doing so voluntarily. They all experience the practical education of the Volksgemeinschaft: every small girl who collects on the streets; and all those professionals who take turns lending their support, all the way up to the representatives of the state, of the economy, of the arts, and so on. And this is what is decisive, my Volksgenossen.
For all of us, in one way or another, are burdened with the heritage of the past, our descent, our social standing, our profession, and so on. We have the choice of making do without millions of men, who are irreplaceable in their national work and economic activities, because they are not yet mature enough for membership in such a community. From the start, National Socialism has maintained that man’s behavior is merely a product of education, habit, and heritage; it can thus be relearned. For the child who is reared by our Volk is not born with any prejudices of standing or class; these are instilled in him. Only in the course of his life is this differentiation artificially forced upon him. And to remove this is our mission if we are not willing to renounce the building of a truly organic, sustainable, human community. And this mission we have taken upon ourselves and are beginning to implement in all spheres of life. At the age at which a child formerly was judged old enough to be taught the differences in human existence, we begin with his education towards the community and we do not let go again.
And when this man or another comes to inquire about results-well, my dear friend, we began only a few years ago. First we did so with the Party as the community and then, for nearly eight years now, with the German Volk.
This was but a short time, but the results are already overwhelming when you consider how many centuries before sought the opposite. For this, the colossal demonstrations of our community speak. Only twenty years ago this would have been impossible; thirty years ago inconceivable; and forty years ago no one would have wanted this; but today it is a virtual reality. We educate man to a single conception of life, to a single, balanced conception of duty. And we are convinced that, after a certain period of such an education, men will emerge as products of this education who then will, to the same extent, represent the new ideas as today they still embody, in part, the old ones.
It was a laborious process of polishing and educating. But in the Winterhilfswerk already we can see: it is making progress. When the first Winterhilfswerk was called to life, many still went about Germany-you know what I mean, according to Ludwig Schmitz497-and said: “Who is coming along there? A man with a collection tin! About face right or left, march!” Or some other stupid comment.
That the situation has improved is evident already in the growing amount of donations. Persistence here, too, has led to success. And slowly, even the most thickheaded representative of the old order has to acknowledge: first, it is of no use anyway, the collectors come time and time again; and second, it is better to donate something; and third, everything considered, something is truly being achieved. And what is happening? The wounds we have healed in Germany! In how many instances did we help others out! In how many instances did we give people a leg-up! What gigantic social institutions have we created! Believe me, many people are against such reforms simply because of apathy or mental sluggishness! But once they do finally see results, they say: “Well, naturally one can contribute to this. I did not think, I could not imagine, either something so colossal coming of it, or it having such consequences. These are truly deeds of greatness which are being accomplished here.” And when these men then come to reflect upon themselves as representatives of the old stubborn opinions, then they are already on the way towards a new Germany.
By contrast, if thirty years ago we had told someone: “Sir, here take this collection tin. Now go stand at the street corner and ask people to donate something for their Volksgenossen”-then that someone would surely have said: “What for? I myself will give you something. But more you cannot ask of me. I am Mister So and So. Never would I think of doing anything of the kind. And what’s more: What will people think of me? What should I do if someone comes up to me and says something stupid?” Well, this man obviously is not all that much more intelligent than the person whom he considers to be stupid. You have to educate people to be considerate to one another. It is good if they see how ill-considered, how stupid some people are.
And precisely this great work has shown within a few years’ time how open to influence a Volkskorper is; how a great idea can lay hold of people in the end. This is true also of a great work, of a great achievement. And we are in fact laying hold of them from all sides. Everywhere this education is being conducted.
I do not know how often, in former times, people remarked on the Napoleonic phrase that every soldier carries the marshal’s baton in his knapsack. This was not meant literally, of course. For then it was simply inconceivable that a regular soldier set out on such a path. All this has changed today, top to bottom.
Whereas once the highest distinction was accorded only to officers, today a valiant non-commissioned officer or private may equally well earn it. The walls of a world of prejudice have been torn down. A world of prejudice is gone and, you may believe me, in the course of the decades it will become ever the more beautiful to live in this state. All the greater will be the tasks to be faced. They will draw our Volk ever closer together, will transform it into a closer community of even greater depths. And if there should still remain some who are not willing, under any circumstances, then we will just have to accord them an honorable funeral. For they are the representatives of a bygone era and, perhaps, of great interest in this respect. But the future belongs to the young nations who will solve this question. And we have undertaken its solution and we shall see to it.
In this context, the Winterhilfswerk constitutes a colossal demonstration of the community of the homeland in view of the colossal demonstrations of the community of our front. As a gigantic organism there fulfills its duty in a wellorganized manner, so the homeland does here and is prepared to undertake the same, willing to make any sacrifice this struggle for existence, for our future, will impose upon us. And when I pay tribute here once more to all those who have contributed to the first Kriegswinterhilfswerk or who were otherwise active as helpers, then, at the same time, I ask all of you: Fulfill anew your mission in this second Kriegswinterhilfswerk. May some of you become voluntary helpers while the others become voluntary contributors. And take care that this project should once more demonstrate to the world our indivisible sense of community, that it should finally recognize all speculations connected to “General Revolution” to be idiotic. Another general has taken the place of this general: the general of a common fulfillment of duty! It is the spirit of our Volksgemeinschaft which allows us to bear all this and which makes our Volk strong for all confrontations and decisions of the future! With this the individual contributes to breaking the will of our enemies, to robbing them of their illusions, and thereby does his part in the dissemination of correct information about our Volk. The more the other world sees this great Volk to be a single unit, the more it will recognize the hopelessness of its undertaking.
People who set forth on paths separate from one another could be broken.
But eighty-five million men who have one will, one resolve, and who are prepared to act-no power on earth can break them!
Hitler responds to Churchill's decision to target civilians.
On this date, September 6, 1901, the 25th President of the United States, William McKinley, was shot and fatally wounded inside the Temple of Music on the grounds of the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. McKinley was shaking hands with the public when he was shot by Leon Czolgosz, an anarchist. The President died on September 14 from gangrene caused by the bullet wounds.
On this date, September 8, 1947, Brigadeführer Kurt Eberhard, committed suicide in prison custody. I will post information about him from Wikipedia.
Kurt Eberhard (born September 12, 1874 in Rottweil- died September 8, 1947 in Stuttgart) was a German officer. He rose to the rank of Brigadeführer of the SSand in the German army. During World War II Eberhard was given the command over the occupied city of Kiev in Ukraine. He was involved in planning and supervising the Babi Yar massacres during which from 100,000 to 150,000 people were murdered. He was captured by US authorities after the end of World War II, in November 1945, and kept in captivity in Stuttgart. He committed suicide on September 8, 1947.
I, the warrior of Novorossiya Armed Forces, do take the oath and solemnly swear to be an honest, brave, discipline and vigilant warrior. Strictly keep military secrets, unquestioningly follow the laws of military regulations and orders of commanders and superiors. I do swear that I will be serving honestly and according to conscience sacredly cherish the high title of soldier which is granted to me by my people. I do swear to protect the freedom of Novorossiya and all Russia land, with all my strength, courage, skills, with dignity and honor, not sparing my blood and my very life to achieve complete victory over the enemy. And if I ever break this solemn oath taken by me, let the severe punishment of our laws fall on me, as well as hatred and contempt of working people and my brothers in arms.
The "Prizrak" Brigade (in Russian Бригада «Призрак») meaning "Ghost Brigade" commanded by Aleksey Mozgovoy, is an infantry unit of the Lugansk People's Republic. The full name of the Brigade is Mechanized Brigade Prizrak.
The unit was established in late 2014 after pro-Russianprotesters occupied the RSA buildings in Luhansk. Its was first platoon. In August 2014 the unit became a battalion and the fighters rise to 1,000. The commander of the Brigade Aleksey Mozgovoy claimed in late December 2014 to have up to 3,000 fighters.
Soldiers of the Prizrak Brigade marching for the oath taking on September 9, 2014.
Soldiers of the German Wehrmacht! As in years past, you have assembled in Nuremberg for this year’s Reich Party Congress. For the first time, you stand here as soldiers of the Greater German Reich! We owe it to two facts that this age-old dream has become reality: First, the highly successful creation of a truly German Volksgemeinschaft.
It was the prerequisite for the realization of this dream.
Second, the build-up of the new German Wehrmacht whose soldiers finally realized the dream through their invasion. We can draw two conclusions from this: First, we acknowledge the necessity of the existence of the Movement, the Movement which in less than two decades’ time succeeded in liberating the German Volk from its greatest inner confusion and chaos and leading it to the unity which we see today. The teachings of National Socialism and of the Party are guarantors of this inner German Volksgemeinschaft.
Second, the lesson we have learned from this is how important it is that the internally restructured German Volksgemeinschaft be outwardly protected.
Adolf Hitler – closing speech at the NSDAP congress in Nuremberg
September 12, 1938
And yet we look back upon these times with the greatest feeling of pride.
Today we feel doubly close to those times because first of all, in our midst we see the fighters of the eldest German Ostmark who until recently were subject to a like persecution because of their National Socialist conviction. They stand amongst us today as Volksgenossen and citizens of the German Reich. What have they not had to go through, suffer through?! How many of their comrades were slain, how many injured in body and spirit, how many lost their livelihoods for many years, and how many ten thousands were imprisoned in jails, penitentiaries and Anhaltelagers?! The second reason for which we reflect upon these times with particular emotion is the fact that the events we experienced and suffered in our own nation at the time are precisely those we are witnessing on the world stage today.
And above all: our enemies today remain weltanschaulich the very same ones.
Almost every year, we could step before the nation with quiet confidence and await its judgment.The greatest approval ever granted the leadership of a Volk became ours on April 10 of this year.The Volk acknowledged and confirmed that it regards the new form of state and its leadership as institutions that strive to the best of their abilities to serve the Volk and to lead it once more to freedom and greatness and to ensure its economic well-being.
And still, what we are witnessing today on a larger scale is precisely the same we experienced in the decades of internal struggle. Ever since the day we assumed power, we have been surrounded by a hostile environment. The connivance between the gilded, capitalist democratic movement in our parliament on the one hand and with Marxism on the other in their war on National Socialism is today mirrored in a like conspiracy, albeit on a larger scale, involving the democracies and the Bolshevists as they make war on the state constituted by the National Socialist Volksgemeinschaft.
Perhaps the most persuasive evidence of the insincerity of their fight against the National Socialist Party as it struggled for power at the time is the fact that no matter whether they were bourgeois nationalists, capitalist democrats, or Marxist internationalists, they formed a unitary front against us in all decisive battles. At the time, many of our Volksgenossen were forced to realize just how dishonest the political battle was and of how little import morals were in this fight as they saw those parties fighting us on nationalist grounds, yet were not reluctant to conspire with Marxist internationalists to that end.
And vice versa, our Volksgenossen had to realize just how dishonest and fraudulent those parties were who claimed to persecute us for socialist reasons and then went to ally themselves with the worst proponents of capitalism prior to entering into the unitary front against us. The Center Party claimed to be fighting us because we were hostile to the Church, and yet to this end it entered into a holy alliance with atheist Social Democrats and did not shrink from uniting with the Communists. And on the other hand, Communists fought us because, as they claimed, we represented the Reaktion in their eyes. Yet they cast their ballot together with the true reactionaries against the vote of the National Socialist Party in the Reichstag.
It was indeed a display of such duplicity that one could only turn from it in disgust. Today we feel equally repelled as we watch the so-called international world democracies who supposedly advocate liberty, fraternity, justice, the right to self-determination of the peoples, etc., as we see these states ally themselves with Bolshevist Moscow.349 One day, perhaps someone will ask why we concern ourselves so much with the democracies and why we treat them in so negative a manner. This is the case because: First, as those attacked we are forced to counter.
Second, the conduct of these phenomena is so revolting.
Dishonesty sets in the minute these democracies claim to represent government by the people and decry authoritarian states as dictatorships. I believe that I can confidently state that today there are only two world powers who can honestly claim to have 99 percent of their people backing the government. What in other countries goes by the name of democracy is in most cases little other than the apt manipulation of public opinion by means of money and the press, and the equally apt manipulation of the results hereby achieved. How easily, however, are these supposed democracies stripped bare of their pretenses when one takes a close look at their stance in matters of foreign policy which constantly change to suit the purpose of the moment. There we witness how truly repressive regimes in small countries are actually being glorified by these democracies if it suits their needs. Yes, they even go so far as to fight for them, while on the other hand, they themselves actively repress inconvenient rallies in those states where such protest does not suit them. They fail to acknowledge this activism, attempt to subvert it or simply misinterpret its significance. And this is not all: these democracies even glorify Bolshevist regimes if it happens to suit their purpose, and this in spite of the fact that the latter style themselves as the dictatorship of the proletariat.
In other words, these supposed democracies decry regimes that are backed by 99 percent of their constituents as dictatorships, while at the same time they praise other countries as highly respectable democratic institutions even though these call themselves dictatorships and even though these can only subsist on the basis of mass executions, torture, etc. Is it not one of the greatest ironies in history that in the midst of upright prototype democrats in Geneva, the blooddrenched proponent of one of the cruelest tyrannies of all time moves about freely as a highly respected member of the Council?350 We in Germany have already witnessed the alliance of Jewish capitalism with an abstract version of communist anti-capitalism, and we have seen the Rote Fahne, the Vorwarts and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung march hand in hand here. It is the same all over the world. Bolshevist Moscow has become the highly revered ally of capitalist democracies! [-] For fifteen years, they have acted in gruesome defiance of the most natural interests of their peoples, yes, acting contrary to any standards of human dignity. Indeed, they drew up Diktats with a pistol in hand only to, at a later date, lament the “unilateral” transgression of holy rights and the breach of all the more holy contracts. Without so much as a thought for the opinion of the natives, they have led a drive for the bloody subjugation of entire continents.
However, the minute that Germany mentions the return of its colonies, they declared that-out of concern for the indigenous people there-one could not possibly abandon the natives to so horrid a fate. At the same time, they did not distance themselves from dropping bombs out of planes onto their own colonies. And all this to use the force of reason to persuade the dear colored compatriots to submit to the foreign rule a hit longer. Of course, the bombs thus employed were bombs with civilizing warheads which one must absolutely not confuse with those brutal ones Italy used in Abyssinia.
Throughout the democratic countries, one laments the unimaginable cruelty with which first Germany, and now Italy as well, are striving to rid themselves of the Jewish element. However, all these great democratic empires have altogether little more than a few persons per square kilometer. In Italy and in Germany this number exceeds 140 persons. For decades, Germany nevertheless took in hundreds of thousands upon hundreds of thousands of Jews without batting an eyelid.
Now that the burden has become overbearing and the nation is no longer willing to have its life blood sucked out of it by these parasites, it is now that there is great lament abroad. However, not a word is heard in these democratic countries about replacing this hypocritical lamentation with a good deed and assistance. No, to the contrary, all one hears is cold reasoning claiming that in these states there is regretfully no space either! Evidently, they expect us to bear up under this burden of Jewry despite our 140 persons per square kilometer, while the democratic world empires with their few people per square kilometer could not possibly shoulder this burden. Alas, no help. But morals! And thus we find the National Socialist Reich faced with the same phenomenon and forces that we had fifteen years to get to know as a party.
Insofar as this is indicative of the hostile attitude of the democratic states toward Germany, this matters little to us. Besides, why should we fare any better than the Reich before us? On a side note, I will admit quite openly that I find it easier to bear insults from someone who can no longer rob me than to be robbed by someone who praises me for letting it happen. Today we are insulted. Yet we are in a position-praise the Lord-to prevent Germany from being ravaged and raped. The state before us was blackmailed for fifteen years.
For this, admittedly, it received compensation-the somewhat sparse recompense, at least in my eyes-of praise for having been a good little democratic state.
This comportment becomes unbearable for us the minute a major part of our Volk is placed at the mercy of impertinent abusers, ostensibly without any means of defending itself, while the brunt of democratic rhetoric pours forth as a threat to our Volksgenossen. I am speaking of Czecho-Slovakia.
This state is a democracy, that is to say it was founded on democratic principles. The majority of its people was simply forced to submit to the structure construed at Versailles without any one asking for its opinion. As a true democracy, this state immediately began to suppress the majority of its people, to abuse there and to rob them of their inalienable rights. Gradually, one attempted to impress upon the world that this state had a special military and political mission to fulfill.
The former French Minister of Aviation, Pierre Cot,352 has explained this to us recently. According to him, Czechoslovakia exists for the purpose of providing a base, in the event of war, for launching aerial attacks and dropping bombs upon German cities and industrial plants. Needless to say, we may assume that these will once again be equipped with those warheads of the famed civilizing variety.
However, this mission stands in opposition to the desires of the majority of the inhabitants of this state, and is alien to their philosophy of life and contrary to their vital interests. That is why the majority of its citizens were silenced. Any protest against this fate would have been an assault upon the aims incarnate in this state and hence would have been in violation of its constitution. Drawn up by the democrats, this constitution was less suited to realizing the rights of the people affected and was instead more tailored toward accommodating the political expediencies of the people’s oppressors. Political expediency necessitated as well that a structure be construed that accorded the Czech people a position of preeminence in this state. Whoever protested against this usurpation became an “enemy of the state” and hence, in accordance with democratic norms, he was outlawed. Providence has thus called upon the socalled people of the Czech state-admittedly voicing its intent through the good offices of the architects at Versailles-to stand guard lest someone rise in opposition to this ultimate purpose of the state.
Should someone nevertheless venture to step forth from amongst the majority of the oppressed peoples in this state and voice opposition to this end, then it is naturally permissible that he be beaten hack with the full force at the state’s disposal and, if so desire or need be, he could also simply be murdered.
If this now did not concern us, if this were some foreign affair, we, like so many others, might take note of it simply as a most interesting display of the democrats’ understanding of the rights of peoples to self-determination.
However, the nature of the affair involves an obligation of us Germans.
Amongst the suppressed minorities in this state, there are also three and a half million Germans, roughly as many people of our race as Denmark has in inhabitants.353 These Germans are God’s creatures as well. The Almighty has not created them so that the construction arrived at in Versailles might place them at the mercy of an alien power they hate. And He has not created seven million Czechs either so that they may reign over these three and a half million, keep them in tutelage, and even far less did He create them to ravage and torture.
The situation in this state has become unbearable, as is well known. In a political context, three and a half million people there are robbed of their right to self-determination in the name of the right to self-determination as construed by a certain Mister Wilson. In an economic context, these people are being ruined methodically and hence are subject to a slow but steady extermination.
The misery of the Sudeten Germans defies description. One desires to destroy them. In a humanitarian context, they are being oppressed and humiliated in an unprecedented fashion.
When three and a half million members of a Volk of eighty million may not sing a song they like because the Czechs dislike it, when they are beaten until they bleed simply because they wear stockings which the Czechs care not to see, when they are terrorized and abused because they greet one another in a fashion the Czechs cannot bear even though they were merely greeting one another and no Czech, when they are persecuted because of every little detail connected to the expression of their nationality, and when they are hunted down as though animals, yes, then this may leave those renowned representatives of democracy cold, who knows, they might actually enjoy it since those affected are a mere three and a half million Germans. All I can say to these representatives of democracy is that this does not leave us cold, no, if these tortured creatures can find neither justice nor help by themselves, then they will receive both from us. There must be an end to the injustice inflicted upon these people! I have already stated this quite openly in my speech of February 20. It was a short-sighted enterprise which the architects of Versailles conceived when they gave birth to the abnormal structure of the Czechoslovakian state. It could pursue its mission to ravage and rape a mass of millions of other nationalities only as long as the brother nations themselves suffered from the abuse inflicted upon the world at Versailles.
However, to believe that such a regime could continue to sin eternally and endlessly means to succumb to an inconceivable delusion. In my speech before the German Reichstag on February 20, I had pointed out that the Reich will no longer stand for any further oppression and persecution of these three and a half million Germans. And I implore all foreign statesmen not to think this mere rhetoric.
For the sake of peace in Europe, the National Socialist State has made enormous sacrifices, enormous sacrifices for the entire nation. It did not harbor any thoughts of so-called revenge; rather, it has banished all such thoughts from all private and public spheres of life. In the course of the seventeenth century, France slowly penetrated Alsace-Lorraine and took it from the Old German Reich in the midst of peacetime.
Following a dreadful war in 1870–71 which had been forced upon Germany, the Reich reclaimed these territories, and they were returned to it. They were lost once more after the World War. To us Germans, the cathedral in Strasbourg means a lot. And when we did not pursue the matter any further, we refrained only in the service of a lasting peace for Europe. No one could have forced us to cede these claims voluntarily had we not wished to give them up in the first place! We gave them up because we willed an end to this constant argument with France once and for all. The Reich has espoused a similar stance and has taken similarly determined steps along its other borders as well. Here National Socialism acted highly responsibly and set an example. We made the greatest of sacrifices and distanced ourselves voluntarily from any further demands so that Europe might enjoy a peaceful future and so that a passage might be cleared, at least on our part, for reconciliation of all peoples worldwide. We acted in an exceedingly loyal fashion.
Neither press, silver screen, nor stage were allowed to propagate a diverging opinion. Not even in literature did we allow for an exception. In a related spirit, I offered solutions for a reduction of tensions in Europe, an offer that was refused for reasons we still fail to comprehend. We voluntarily restricted our power in this important realm in the hope that we should never again be forced to use arms against this one other state in question.354 This did not happen because we would not have been able to produce 55 percent more ships; it occurred because we wished to contribute to a final reduction of tensions and to a pacification of the situation in Europe. Since we found a great patriot and statesman in Poland willing to enter into an agreement with Germany, we immediately seized the opportunity, and arrived at a treaty that no doubt is of far greater import to peace in Europe than all the talk in the halls of the League of Nations’ temple in Geneva.
Germany today possesses many a completely pacified border and Germany is determined, and has stated as much, to accept these borders as inviolable and unchangeable in order to give Europe a feeling of security and peace.
Apparently, however, this self-denial and self-discipline on the part of Germany has been misinterpreted as a sign of weakness. Hence today I would like to set things right: I do not believe that we would be rendering peace in Europe a great service if we pronounced our disinterest in all European affairs. In particular, Germany would not be doing anyone a great service if it remained unmoved by the suffering and plight of three and a half million Volksgenossen and if it did not take an interest in their fate. We understand when England and France pursue their interests in the world.
I wish to point out to the statesmen in Paris and London that there are German interests as well and that we are determined to pursue these under all circumstances. At this point I would like to remind them of my speech before the Reichstag in 1933, in which I openly avowed before all the world that there were questions of national concern in which our path was clearly predetermined. I would rather submit myself to any ordeal, danger, or torment than to fail in the fulfillment of such prerogatives.
No European state has done as much as Germany in the service of peace! No one has made greater sacrifices! One must bear in mind, however, that there is a limit as to how much one can sacrifice, and one should not confuse National Socialist Germany with the Germany of Bethmann-Hollweg and Herding.
When I make this declaration, I do so because of an event that occurred in the course of this year, an event that forces all of us to reconsider our stance to date. As you well know, my Party Comrades, Czechoslovakia has finally announced local elections to be held this year after infinitely postponing any form of plebiscite. Even Prague has finally admitted to the untenable nature of its present position. It fears the unity of the Germans and of the other nationalities. It is convinced that it has to resort to extraordinary measures in order to exert pressure in the election process and thus to manipulate the outcome of the election. Evidently, the Czechoslovakian Government has concluded that this can be achieved only through a brutal policy of intimidation.
Apparently, the Czech state felt that a display of its military might was particularly well suited to this end.
This was especially geared toward the Sudeten Germans to serve as a warning not to speak up for their national interests and to vote accordingly. In order to somehow justify this attempt at intimidation before the eyes of the world public, the Czech Government, i.e. Herr Beneš, fabricated the lie that German troops had been mobilized for an invasion of Czechoslovakia.
In this context, let me today state the following: the creation of such lies is nothing new. About a year ago, the press in a certain country invented a story according to which 20,000 German soldiers had landed in Morocco.356 The Jewish proponent of this lie in the press hoped to thereby cause a war.
At the time, it had sufficed to address a short statement to the French Ambassador to resolve the situation. And in this instance as well, we immediately assured the ambassador of another great power of the falsehood of the Czech allegations. The statement was issued once more, and the Prague Government was immediately informed of its content. Nevertheless, the Government in Prague exploited this deception as a pretext for its terrorist blackmail and manipulation of the election.357 All that I can do in retrospect is to assert that, for one, not one German soldier had been called up other than those serving anyway at this point in time.
Secondly, not one regiment, not one additional unit, had marched to the border.
Indeed, not one soldier served in a garrison other than the one assigned to him for peacetime during this period.
To the contrary, orders were issued to avoid taking any steps that might be construed as a means for exerting pressure on Czechoslovakia on our part.
Nonetheless, a base and vile campaign against us was launched in which all of Europe was organized in the service of a government in pursuit of criminal goals. This government’s sole ambition lay in the manipulation of the election by the exertion of military pressure in an effort to intimidate its citizens and thus rob them of their right to vote. And all this was merely a means of obtaining moral legitimacy which this government felt it needed. Indeed, it had no scruples to cast suspicion on one great state, to alarm all of Europe and to, if need be, plunge Europe into a bloody war.
The Reich Government undertook no such steps, and, in fact, Germany had no such intentions; quite to the contrary, it was convinced that the local elections would do justice to the Sudeten German cause. This lack of activity was then construed as a sign that the German Government stepped down because of the determined stance of the Czechs and of the early intervention by England and France.
You will understand, my Party Comrades, that a great power cannot tolerate such a base incursion [the partial mobilization of Czechoslovakian troops on May 20/21] a second time. As a consequence, I have taken the necessary precautions. I am a National Socialist and as such I am accustomed to strike back at any attacker. Moreover, I know only too well that leniency will not succeed in appeasing, but will merely encourage the arrogance of so irreconcilable an adversary as the Czechs.
Let the fate of the Old German Reich be a warning to us. Its love for peace drove it to the brink of self-destruction. Nonetheless, the Old Reich could not prevent the war in the end. In due consideration thereof, I took steps on May 28 which were very difficult: First, I ordered a far-reaching intensification and the immediate implementation and execution of the reinforcements announced for Army and Luftwaffe. Second, I ordered the immediate expansion of our fortifications to the West. I can assure you that ever since May 28, the construction of one of the most gigantic fortresses of all time has been underway there.
To this end, I entrusted Dr. Todt, the Generalinspekteur for road construction in Germany, with a new commission. Within the framework of the projects undertaken by the fortress construction inspectorate, he has achieved one of the greatest accomplishments of all time, thanks to his extraordinary organizational talents.
Let me point out a few figures to you. At present at work on the fortification of our Western frontier, a project actually begun over two years ago, are: 278,000 laborers in the Todt organization in addition to 84,000 [other] laborers, in addition to 100,000 men of the Reich Labor Service and numerous pioneer battalions and infantry divisions. Besides the materials that are brought to the construction sites via different transportation routes, the German Reichsbahn alone transports 8,000 freight cars a day.
The daily consumption of gravel amounts to over 100,000 tons. The fortification of Germany’s western border will be completed prior to the onset of winter. Its defensive capacity is already assured as of this day. Once completed, it will consist of over 17,000 armored plates and concrete structures. The German Volk in arms stands behind this front of steel and concrete made up of three fortified lines and in some locations actually consists of four fortified lines up to fifty kilometers deep. I have made this greatest effort of all time in the service of peace. Under no circumstances, however, am I willing to quietly stand by and observe from afar the continued oppression of German Volksgenossen in Czechoslovakia.
It’s all tactics. Herr Beneš talks, wants to organize negotiations. He wishes to resolve the question of procedure in accordance with the Geneva Conventions and hands out little favors to placate the people. Things cannot go on this way! This is not a question of empty diplomatic phrases. This is a question of right, the question of a right not granted. What we Germans demand is the right to self-determination, a right every Volk possesses, and not an empty phrase. Herr Beneš is not supposed to grant the Sudeten Germans any favors. They have a right to their own way of life, just as any other people do.
The consequences will be grave ones should, perchance, the democracies persist in their conviction that they must continue to, by any and all means, accord their protection to the oppression of German men and women! I believe it to be in the service of peace, if I leave no doubts as to this fact.
I am asking neither that Germany be allowed to oppress three and a half million Frenchmen, nor am I asking that three and a half million Englishmen be placed at our mercy. Rather I am simply demanding that the oppression of three and a half million Germans in Czechoslovakia cease and that the inalienable right to self-determination take its place.
We would truly regret if this were to cloud or damage our relations to the other European states. Yet the fault would not be ours. It is the business of the Czechoslovakian Government to come to terms with the true representatives of the Sudeten Germans and, in one way or another, to reach some form of understanding with them. Nevertheless, it is my business and, my Volksgenossen, it is the business of all of us to take care that justice not be perverted into injustice. After all, this matter involves our German Volksgenossen. I am not in the least willing to allow foreign statesmen to create a second Palestine right here in the heart of Germany. The poor Arabs are defenseless and have been abandoned by all. The Germans in Czechoslovakia are neither defenseless nor have they been abandoned. Please note this fact.
I feel compelled to broach this topic at that Party Congress in which the representatives of our German-Austrian Gaus participate for the first time.
Better than anyone else they know how painful it is to be separated from the mother country. Easier than anyone else they will grasp the full import of my exposition on this day. With greater enthusiasm than any, they will agree with me when I state before the entire Volk that we would not deserve to be Germans if we were not willing to take such a stance, and to bear up under the consequences one way or another.
When we bear in mind the intolerable impertinence with which even a small state dared to approach Germany in the last months, then we realize that the only explanation possible is revealed in the unwillingness to recognize that the German Reich is more than just a peace-loving, upstart state.
Standing in Rome in the springtime, I felt deep inside that we assess historic developments in far too restricted a manner, investigating time periods far too short to be revealing. One thousand or fifteen hundred years are no more than a few dynastic successions.
What exhausts itself in a certain period, can rise again in the same time period. Today’s Italy and today’s Germany are living proof of this. Both are nations that have regenerated, indeed, that might be regarded as new nations in this context. However, their roots spring not from the grounds of more recent ages but rather they reach back into ancient history. The Roman Empire breathes once more. The phenomenon of Germany as a state is not new either, although it has made its appearance more recently.
I had the insignias of the Old German Reich brought to Nuremberg for a reason. I wish to call to mind, and this not only for the benefit of the German people but also for that of all peoples, that more than half a millennium prior to the discovery of the new world, a gigantic Germanic-German Reich358 stood on these grounds. Dynasties came into being and dissipated. Outward forms changed. Yet while the Volk has been rejuvenated, its essence has remained the same it has always been. The German Reich has long been dormant.
Now the German Volk has awakened and once more bears its crown of 1,000 years high on its head. All of us who bear witness to this historic resurrection feel great pride and happiness. We stand before the Almighty in humble gratitude.
For the rest of the world this should be an inspiration as well as a lesson learned, an inspiration to reflect upon history from a more elevated point of view, and a lesson not to succumb to the same mistakes as in the past.
In truth the new Roman-Italian empire and the Germanic-German Reich are ancient structures. You need not love them and yet no power on earth shall ever again remove them.
Party Comrades! National Socialists! The first Reich Party Congress of Greater Germany ends at this hour. All of you are still under the spell of the great historic events of these past days. This demonstration of our Volk’s power and determination has reinforced the nation’s pride and your confidence in it.
Return to your homes now and carry in your hearts that same faith which you have cherished throughout almost two decades as Germans and as National Socialists.
You now have the right to proudly carry your heads high again as Germans.
It is the duty of all of us to never again bow our heads to any alien will. To this let us pledge ourselves, so help us God!
This depends exclusively on the power of our own weapons and, therefore, depends upon the carriers of those weapons themselves.
No negotiations, no conferences and no other agreement has accorded us Germans the natural right to unity. We had to take justice into our own hands, and we were able to do so thanks to your existence, my soldiers! And it is thus that the two greatest institutions of our Volk must fulfill two identical missions. National Socialism has to educate our Volk within to form this Vol ksgemeinschaft. The Wehrmacht has to instruct this same Volk to defend this Volksgemeinschaft outwardly. So it is you, my soldiers, who were immediately charged with the fulfillment of a mission in this new Reich. And this fulfillment has earned you the love of the German Volk. It relied upon you and it has realized that it can rely upon its sons in uniform. For you carry the best weapons available today, you receive the best training, and I know that you also possess the best of character.
You fit in well with the eternal, everlasting front constituted by Germany’s soldiers. In the past months, I repeatedly had the opportunity to convince myself of this. I saw it at the maneuver sites, shooting stands, and training camps, and it was with great contentment that I realized that the German nation can once more look to its soldiers with great pride. And it is that for which I thank you! Yet, we do not serve for the sake of gratitude, praise, or recompense unless this gratitude, praise and recompense is at the service of what we value the most in this world: our Volk and our German Reich!
On this date, September 12, 2007, Daryl Keith Holton was executed by the electric chair in the Tennessee. He was convicted of murdering four children (3 of them were his sons) on November 30, 1997.He needed a suicide assist and decided to choose the electric chair, instead of the lethal injection. Please go to this previous blog post to learn more.