Mein Kampf (My Struggle)
... Squashed down to read in about 60 minutes
"The world is not there to be possessed by the faint-hearted races."
Adolf Hitler, photographed by Heinrich Hoffmann, rehearsing poses for a speech.
INTRODUCTION TO 'Mein Kampf'
Something about this man and his ideas persuaded a whole generation of intelligent, educated, god-fearing people to leave off the art, science, crafts and music they were famous for and to devote themselves to carrying out a pointless aggressive war which left some 72 Million people dead, by far the most destructive war in the history of the world. This should not, I think, be allowed to pass without explanation.
There seems, nowadays, to be a certain reluctance to discuss Mein Kampf as a piece of political philosophy, and there are perhaps three worthwhile classes of argument in favour of ignoring it...
1) Mein Kampf was not actually written by Hitler, but ghost-written by his assistant Emil Maurice, drastically edited by Rudolf Heß and other party propagandists, while the Murphy translation used here appears to have been 'doctored' to make Hitler appear wiser than he was. There may be some truth in this, but it doesn't in any way detract from the significance of its content.
2) The political philosophy presented in Mein Kampf is now known to have terrifying consequences, but the work is so powerfully written that even the wise risk being drawn in. This seems to be the view of the government of Bavaria, who control Hitler's estate, and oppose all reproduction of the book.
3) Hitler ought to be excluded for his barbarism, but no one usually seems too worried about including Marx and Mao among the important thinkers.
However, just as Bertrand Russell used to keep the Bible and Voltaire together on his shelves as poison and antidote, I think the best place for Mein Kampf is out in the open, and within spitting distance of John Stuart Mill , whose 'On Liberty' is quite its best antidote, and also gives five very good reasons why I am convinced that it must stay where it is. If we don't understand dangerous ideas, how can we choose to oppose them?
ABOUT THIS SQUASHED EDITION
This Squashed text is largely based on the 1939 translation by James Murphy, which seems to have 'toned down' much of the original meaning and given Hitler's prose the appearance of a coherence and intelligence which is far removed from the rather rambling original. However, Murphy was working for the Nazi ministry of propaganda, making his edition perhaps the nearest thing to an 'official' translation.
Reich: The territory of a German state, as the Holy Roman Empire, or First Reich (c800-1806); the German Empire, or Second Reich (1871-1919); the Weimar Republic (1919-1933); Hitler's Third Reich 1933-1945.
Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles, über Alles In Der Welt: 'Germany, Germany over all. Over all in the world'
Weltanschauung: World-view. From 'Welt' = world + 'Anschauung' = view
Realschule: Secondary School. High School.
Aryan: Originally referred to the peoples of Iran, Afghanistan and India. Adopted by Nazis to mean 'Northern Europeans'. The term is no longer in technical use.
Mein Kampf (My Struggle)
"The world is not there to be possessed by the faint-hearted races."
I: I was born at Braunau-on-the-Inn, in Austria on the German border. My favourite book was a history of the Franco-German War. My father wanted me to become a Government official. But I had a talent for drawing. I led the class in geography and history and became an ardent 'German National'. My father, then my beloved mother died, so I left for Vienna.
II: I failed to enter the Academy of Fine Arts. The iniquitous social conditions taught me that fundamental changes in our economic and cultural life were needed. I worked as a labourer and studied music and architecture. I saw the Social Democrats as unsound, insincere and dominated by Jews. I realised that should the Jew, with his Marxism, triumph then human life on this planet will cease. In opposing the Jew I am doing God's will.
III: I had admired Parliament, but realised that democracy produced filth and lies. The aim of human existence is not the maintenance of a State, but the conservation of the race.
IV: I came to Munich to study German art. Germany's population is growing by 900,000 souls each year. We must obtain the support of England and expand our territory in Europe. The State is not an economic institution. The Jews form a State within the State. Tolerant Aryans accept Judaism because they think it is a religion, but Mosaic Law is the doctrine of the preservation of the Jewish race.
V: The war of 1914 was inevitable. Ideas or philosophies, whether true or not, cannot be broken by force, unless it is accompanied by a new Weltanschauung [world-view], or if one can ruthlessly exterminate their last upholders.
VI: Marxists were masters of propaganda. Propaganda must appeal to the stupid masses, not for education but to create a conviction regarding the reality of a certain fact. It must be confined to a few bare essentials, expressed in persistently repeated formulas.
VII: At Ypres the British attacked us with gas, I was temporarily blinded.
VIII: Feder explained the dangerous link between stock-exchange capital and loan payments. I realised that we have to fight for the maintenance of our racial stock, the freedom and independence of the Fatherland
IX: I joined the 'The German Labour Party'.
X: Man must realize that a fundamental law of necessity reigns throughout all Nature and that his existence is subject to the law of eternal struggle and strife. The government could not even fight against syphilis and prostitution. Our art and architecture have been debased and our religions disrespected. Parliamentary democracy means half-measures. All because Germany has ignored the racial problem.
XI: Racial mixing leads to failure in nature. Where Aryans are pure, they lead all science and culture. Pacifism may be possible after Germany rules the world. Everything not of sound racial stock is chaff. All history is a manifestation of the instinct of racial self-preservation, whether for weal or woe. The Jews have no civilization, and preserve themselves only by leeching on others. The Jew is the incarnation of Satan and the symbol of evil. Jews brought negroes to bastardize the white race. Loss of racial purity degrades men for all time.
XII: I was convinced that the masses must be nationalized, by ruthless and devoted insistence, destroying the enemy that opposes them. Christianity did the same. Our movement must have one leader only. We renamed ourselves The National Socialist German Labour Party and, from a tiny beginning, soon had thousands of followers. A fire was enkindled from whose glowing heat the sword would be fashioned which would restore freedom to the German Siegfried
Squashed version edited by Glyn Hughes © 2011
VOLUME I: A RETROSPECT
IN THE HOME OF MY PARENTS
It has turned out fortunate for me to-day that destiny appointed Braunau-on-the-Inn to be my birthplace. For that little town is just on the frontier between those two States, the reunion of which seems, to us of the younger generation, a task to which we should devote our lives.
German-Austria must be restored to the great German Motherland. The German people will have no right to engage in a colonial policy until they shall have brought all their children together in the one State. Over a hundred years ago this spot was the scene of a tragic calamity which affected the whole German nation. From 1792 to 1814 the French Revolutionary Armies overran Germany. This was 'The Time of Germany's Deepest Humiliation'.
Browsing through my father's books, I chanced across a popular history of the Franco-German War of 1870-71. It became my favourite reading.
My father had the idea that his son should become a Government official. Yet when I was then eleven years old I felt myself forced into open opposition. I would not spend the whole of my life filling out forms. I had a talent for drawing. The old gentleman was bitterly annoyed "Artist! Not as long as I live!"
My school reports were always the extremes of good or bad. But I led the class in geography and history. When meetings were held for the School League we wore cornflowers and black-red-gold colours, we greeted one another with Heil! and instead of the Austrian anthem we sang our own "Deutschland über Alles". I had become an ardent 'German National'.
Few teachers realize that the purpose of teaching history is not the memorizing of dates and facts. To study history means to search for and discover the forces behind the causes of those results which appear before our eyes. The art of reading and studying consists in remembering the essentials and forgetting what is not essential.
When I was in my thirteenth year my father was suddenly taken from us. Two years later my mother succumbed to a long and painful illness. Her death came as a terrible blow to me. I respected my father, but I loved my mother. With my clothes packed in a valise and with an indomitable resolution in my heart, I left for Vienna.
YEARS OF STUDY AND SUFFERING IN VIENNA
I went to take the entrance examination for the Academy of Fine Arts. I was so convinced of success that when I failed, it struck me like a bolt from the skies.
Social conditions in Vienna were iniquitous. Dazzling riches and loathsome destitution mingled in violent contrast. I had to earn my daily bread working as an extra-hand on any job that turned up, and so I experienced the workings of this fate in my person and my soul. I perceived very clearly that the aim of all social activity must never be mere charity, but to find a way of eliminating the fundamental deficiencies in our economic and cultural life.
What station in life can a person fill, to whom nothing is sacred, who has never experienced anything noble, who has been intimately acquainted with the lowest kind of human existence? This child has got into the habit of reviling all authority by the time he is fifteen.
Besides my interest in the social question I devoted myself to the study of architecture. With music, I considered it queen of the arts. I know people who read interminably, book after book, from page to page, and yet I should not call them 'well-read people'. Their brain seems incapable of sorting and classifying the material which they have gathered. That jumble is not merely useless, but tends to make the unfortunate possessor of it conceited.
I first came into contact with the Social Democrats while working in the building trade. Going to my my lodgings I noticed the Arbeiterzeitung (The Workman's Journal) in a tobacco shop. I found that in the social democratic daily papers I could study the inner character of this politico-philosophic system much better than in all their theoretical literature.
In discussing economic questions its statements were false and its proofs unsound. In treating of political aims its attitude was insincere. Knowledge of the Jews is the only key whereby one may understand the inner nature and the real aims of Social Democracy.
At the Realschule I knew one Jewish boy. In the Jew I saw only a man who was of a different religion, and therefore, on grounds of human tolerance, I was against the idea that he should be attacked. Once, when passing through the inner City, I encountered a phenomenon in a long caftan and black side-locks. My first thought was: Is this a Jew? Is this a German? I bought some anti-Semitic pamphlets. But most of the statements made were superficial and the proofs extraordinarily unscientific. But any indecision was removed by the activities of a great movement, called Zionism. Its aim was to assert the national character of Judaism, and the movement was strongly represented in Vienna.
What soon gave me cause for very serious consideration were the activities of the Jews in certain branches of life, into the mystery of which I penetrated little by little. Was there any shady undertaking, any form of foulness, especially in cultural life, in which at least one Jew did not participate? I discovered the Jewish activities in the Press, in art, in literature and the theatre. Here was a pestilence, a moral pestilence, with which the public was being infected. It was worse than the Black Plague of long ago. It was a terrible thought, and yet it could not be avoided, that the greater number of the Jews seemed specially destined by Nature to play this shameful part. Is it for this reason that they can be called the chosen people?
I recalled the names of the public leaders of Marxism, and then I realized that most of them belonged to the Chosen Race. This alien race held in its hands the leadership of that Social Democratic Party.
The Jewish doctrine of Marxism repudiates the aristocratic principle of Nature and substitutes for it the eternal privilege of force and energy, numerical mass and its dead weight. Should the Jew, with the aid of his Marxist creed, triumph over the people of this world, his Crown will be the funeral wreath of mankind, and this planet will once again follow its orbit through ether, without any human life on its surface, as it did millions of years ago.
And so I believe to-day that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator. In standing guard against the Jew I am defending the handiwork of the Lord.
POLITICAL REFLECTIONS ARISING OUT OF MY SOJOURN IN VIENNA
Generally speaking a man should not publicly take part in politics before he has reached the age of thirty. A man must first acquire a fund of general ideas and fit them together so as to form an organic structure of personal thought or outlook on life- a weltanschauung.
The mental horizon of the German-Austrian was comparatively broad. His commercial interests comprised almost every section of the heterogeneous Empire that was not under Jewish control. Apart from the new artistic trash, which might easily have been produced by a negro tribe, all genuine artistic inspiration came from the German section of the population. But the Habsburg Empire lacked ethnical uniformity, the fundamental basis of a national State.
The European revolutionary movement of 1848 primarily took the form of a class conflict in almost every other country, but in Austria it took the form of a racial struggle. The setting up of a representative parliamentary body, without insisting on the preliminary that only one language should be used in all public intercourse under the State, was the first great blow to the predominance of the German element. From that moment the State was doomed to collapse.
When Barry built his Houses of Parliament, on the shore of the Thames, his statues and paintings made it a temple to the glory of the nation. But the 'nationalities' were opposed to any glorification of Austrian history in the decoration of their building, insisting that such would constitute an offence to them and a provocation. In Germany the Reich-stag, built by Wallot, was not dedicated to the German people until the cannons were thundering in the World War.
I had always hated the Parliament, but not as an institution in itself. Quite the contrary. As one who cherished ideals of political freedom I could not even imagine any other form of government. A certain admiration which I had for the British Parliament contributed towards this opinion
I studied more closely the democratic principle of 'decision by the majority vote'. Democracy, as practised in Western Europe to-day, is the breeding-ground in which the bacilli of the Marxist world pest can grow and spread. By the introduction of parliamentarianism, democracy produced an abortion of filth and fire.
This system, by forcing the individual to pass judgment on questions for which he is not competent gradually debases his moral character. Nobody will have the courage to say: "Gentlemen, I am afraid we know nothing about what we are talking about. I for one have no competency in the matter at all." Such a person would be deemed an honourable ass who ought not to be allowed to spoil the game. Those who have a knowledge of human nature know that nobody likes to be considered a fool; and honesty is often taken as an index of stupidity.
Thus it happens that a naturally upright man, once he finds himself elected to parliament, may eventually be induced by the force of circumstances to acquiesce in a general line of conduct which amounts to a betrayal of the public trust.
It is not the aim of our modern democratic parliamentary system to bring together an assembly of intelligent and well-informed deputies. The aim rather is to bring together a group of nonentities who are dependent on others for their views and who can be easily led. No upright man, will be attracted to such an institution. Only a Jew can praise an institution which is as corrupt and false as himself.
In the 'eighties of the last century Manchester Liberalism, which was fundamentally Jewish, had reached the zenith of its influence in the Dual Monarchy. The instinct of self-preservation drove the German element to defend itself energetically.
Every government will claim that its duty is to uphold the authority of the State. But, generally speaking, we must not forget that the highest aim of human existence is not the maintenance of a State of Government but rather the conservation of the race. The established power may in such a case employ only those means which are recognized as 'legal'. yet the instinct of self-preservation on the part of the oppressed will always justify, to the highest degree, the employment of all possible resources.
Only on the recognition of this principle was it possible for those struggles to be carried through, of which history furnishes magnificent examples in abundance, against foreign bondage or oppression at home. Human rights are above the rights of the State. The world is not there to be possessed by the faint-hearted races. The art of leadership consists in consolidating the attention of the people against a single adversary and taking care that nothing will split up that
There, in Vienna, stark reality taught me the truths that now form the fundamental principles of the Party which in five years has grown to become a great mass movement.
In the spring of 1912 I came to Munich to acquire a knowledge of German art. This pre-war sojourn was by far the most contented time of my life. A German city! How different to Vienna!
But I was amazed to find everywhere that nobody understood the real character of the Habsburg Monarchy, that conditions within the Austrian Empire were steadily pushing it toward disaster. The annual increase of population in Germany amounts to almost 900,000 souls. Providing for this army of new citizens must lead to a catastrophe, unless ways are found to forestall the danger of misery and hunger. These are four:
(1) To adopt the French example and artificially restrict the number of births. In periods of distress Nature herself tends to check the increase of population by a method as ruthless as it is wise. But man is not carved from Nature's wood. Securing the existence of a nation by restricting the birth-rate robs that nation of its future.
(2) A second solution is that of internal colonization- by increasing the productive powers of the soil. But the general standard of living is rising more quickly than even the birth rate. The requirements of food and clothing grow from year to year, out of proportion to those of our ancestors.
The day will certainly come when mankind will be forced to check the augmentation of the human species. Nobody can doubt that this world will one day be the scene of dreadful struggles for existence on the part of mankind. Either the world will be ruled according to our modern concept of democracy, and then every decision will be in favour of the numerically stronger races; or the world will be governed by the law of natural distribution of power, and then those nations will be victorious who are of more brutal will, not the nations who have practised self-denial.
(3) It was possible to think of acquiring new territory on which a certain portion of the increasing population could be settled each year.
(4) Our industry and commerce could be organized to secure an increase in exports and thus to support our people by increased purchasing power.
The sounder alternative was undoubtedly territorial expansion. But such a policy cannot find its fulfilment in the Cameroons, but here in Europe. One must calmly and squarely face the truth that it cannot be part of the dispensation of Divine Providence to give a fifty times larger share of the soil of this world to one nation than to another.
The only possibility which Germany had of carrying a sound territorial policy into effect was that of acquiring new territory in Europe itself. A goal which could have been reached only by war, for which there was only one possible ally in Europe. That was England.
No sacrifice should have been considered too great if it was a necessary means of gaining England's friendship. No nation prepared the way for its commercial conquests more brutally than England, and no other nation has defended such conquests more ruthlessly. But in Germany a false idea of the Englishman was formed, of conquering the world peacefully by commercial means.
Now, the truth is that the State in itself does not arise from a contract between parties, within a certain delimited territory, for economic ends. The State is a community of living beings with kindred physical and spiritual natures, organized for the purpose of assuring the conservation of their own kind. Therein, and therein alone, lies the purpose and meaning of a State.
The Jewish State has never been delimited in space. That is why the Jews have always formed a State within the State. One of the most ingenious tricks ever devised has been that of sailing the Jewish ship-of-state under the flag of Religion and thus securing that tolerance which Aryans are always ready to grant to different religious faiths. But the Mosaic Law is really nothing else than the doctrine of the preservation of the Jewish race.
The people who fail in the struggle for existence, those who become vassals condemned to disappear entirely, are those who do not display the heroic virtues in the struggle, or those who fall victims to the perfidy of the parasites.
States have always arisen from the instinct to maintain the racial group, whether this instinct manifest itself in the heroic sphere or in the sphere of cunning and chicanery. In the first case we have the Aryan States, based on work and cultural development. In the second case we have the Jewish parasitic colonies.
THE WORLD WAR
During the boisterous years of my youth nothing used to damp my wild spirits so much as to think that I was born at a time when the world had manifestly decided not to erect any more temples of fame except in honour of business people and State officials. Why could I not have been about the time of the Wars of Liberation, when a man was still of some value?
Then the Boer War came, like a glow of lightning on the far horizon. Then the first great bolt of lightning struck the earth. The storm broke and the thunder of the heavens intermingled with the roar of the cannons in the World War.
The war of 1914 was bound to come. It was certainly not forced on the masses; it was even desired by the whole people.
My own attitude towards the conflict was simple and clear. I believed that it was not a case of Austria fighting to get satisfaction from Serbia but rather a case of Germany fighting for her own existence, for its freedom and for its future. The work of Bismarck must now be carried on.
On August 3rd, 1914, I presented an urgent petition to His Majesty, King Ludwig III, requesting to be allowed to serve in a Bavarian regiment. For me, as for every German, the most memorable period of my life now began. Face to face with that mighty struggle, all the past fell away into oblivion.
At long last the day came when we left Munich on war service. And then followed a damp, cold night in Flanders, the whistling of bullets and the booming of cannons. We pressed forward until we finally came to close-quarter fighting, beyond the beet-fields and the meadows. Soon the strains of a song reached us from afar, and while Death began to make havoc in our ranks we passed the song on to those beside us: "Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles, über Alles In Der Welt."
That was the beginning. Exuberant spirits were quelled by the fear of the ever-present Death. The young volunteer had become an old soldier. For a thousand years to come nobody will dare to speak of heroism without recalling the German Army of the World War.
In the August of 1914 the German worker was looked upon as an adherent of Marxist socialism, whose final objective was and is and will continue to be the destruction of all non-Jewish national States. Within a few days the deceptive smoke-screen of that infamous national betrayal had vanished into thin air.
The time seemed to have arrived for proceeding against the whole Jewish gang of public pests. While the flower of the nation's manhood was dying at the front, there was time enough at home at least to exterminate this vermin. But, instead of doing so, His Majesty the Kaiser held out his hand to these hoary criminals.
Of course this gives rise to the question: Is it possible to eradicate ideas by force of arms? Could a Weltanschauung be attacked by physical force?
By studying historical cases, particularly those which had arisen from religious circumstances, I came to the following fundamental conclusion:
Ideas, philosophical systems and movements grounded on a spiritual foundation, whether true or not, can never be broken by the use of force after a certain stage, except when this use of force is in the service of a new Weltanschauung, which burns with a new flame.
The application of force alone, without moral support based on a spiritual concept, can never bring about the destruction of an idea or arrest the propagation of it, unless one is ready and able ruthlessly to exterminate the last upholders of that idea even to a man, and also wipe out any tradition which it may tend to leave behind. Now, every persecution which has no spiritual motives to support it is morally unjust and raises opposition among the best elements of the population; so much so that these are driven more and more to champion the ideas unjustly persecuted.
When sheer force is used to combat the spread of a doctrine, then that force must be employed systematically and persistently. It was here that the fight against Marxism had hitherto failed.
It was then that I first conceived the idea of taking up political work.
In watching political events I was always struck by the part which propaganda played. It was an instrument which the Marxist Socialists knew how to handle in a masterly way.
During the War, I found that propaganda carried on by the enemy to be an admirable source of instruction. Had we any propaganda? Our people did not seem to be clear even about the primary question itself: Whether propaganda is a means or an end?
Propaganda is a means, and must, therefore, be judged in relation to its intended end. Germany was waging war for its very existence. The purpose of its war propaganda should have been to strengthen the fighting spirit and help it to victory. Just as the beautiful and humane have no place in warfare, they are not to be used as standards of war propaganda, a most terrifying weapon in the hands of those who know how to use it.
Propaganda must always address itself to the broad masses of the people. Propaganda has as little to do with science as an advertisement poster has to do with art. The advertisement poster announcing an exhibition of art has no other aim than to convince the public of the importance of the exhibition. The better it does that, the better is the art of the poster. Likewise, the purpose of propaganda is not personal instruction, but to attract public attention to certain things.
The art of propaganda consists in putting a matter so clearly and forcibly as to create a general conviction regarding the reality of a certain fact. All propaganda must be presented in a popular form and must fix its intellectual level at the lowest mental common denominator among the public. The art of propaganda consists precisely in being able to awaken the imagination of the public through an appeal to their feelings, in finding the appropriate psychological form that will arrest the attention and appeal to the heart.
The receptive powers of the masses are very restricted, their understanding is feeble and they quickly forget. So, all effective propaganda must be confined to a few bare essentials and those must be expressed as far as possible in repetitive formulas. Slogans should be persistently repeated until the very last individual has come to grasp the idea being put forward.
It was, for example, a fundamental mistake to ridicule the worth of the enemy as the Austrian and German comic papers did. For, when they came face to face with the enemy, our soldiers had quite a different impression. On the other hand, British and American war propaganda, by picturing the Germans as Barbarians and Huns, prepared their soldiers for the horrors of war. The terrible havoc caused by the German weapons was only another illustration of Hunnish brutality; whereas on the side of the Entente no time was left for soldiers to meditate on the similar havoc caused by their own weapons.
The worst of all was that our people did not understand the very first condition which has to be fulfilled in every kind of propaganda; namely, a systematically one-sided attitude towards every problem. What, for example, should we say of a poster which purported to advertise soap by insisting on the excellent qualities of the competitive brands? The aim of propaganda is not to try to pass judgment on conflicting rights, giving each its due, but exclusively to emphasize the right which we are asserting. Propaganda must not investigate the truth objectively, it must present only that aspect of the truth which is favourable to its own side.
It was a fundamental mistake to discuss the question of who was responsible for the outbreak of the war. The sole responsibility should have been laid on the shoulders of the enemy, without any discussion whatsoever.
The great majority of a nation is so feminine in its character that its thought is ruled by sentiment rather than sober reasoning. English propagandists understood this in a marvellous way. They pilloried the German enemy as solely responsible for the war, and thus this atrocious lie was positively believed.
Propaganda must be limited to a few simple themes and these must be represented again and again. Perseverance is the first and most important condition of success.
The leading slogan must of course be illustrated in many ways and from several angles, but in the end one must always return to the assertion of the same formula. In this way alone can propaganda be consistent and dynamic in its effects. Then can one be rewarded by surprising, almost incredible, results.
During the night of October 13th, the British opened an attack with gas south of Ypres. Towards morning I began to feel pain. A few hours later my eyes were like glowing coals and all was darkness around me.
I was sent into hospital at Pasewalk in Pomerania, and there it was that I heard of the Revolution. A few Jew-boys were the leaders, not one of them had seen active service at the front. Now their red rags were being hoisted.
With the next few days came the most astounding information of my life. I was told that we were to accept the terms of the Armistice and trust to the magnanimity of our former enemies.
I had not cried since the day that I stood beside my mother's grave. During all those long years of war, when Death claimed many a true friend, to me it would have appeared sinful to have uttered a word of complaint. Did they not die for Germany? In the last few days of that titanic struggle, when the waves of poison gas enveloped me and began to penetrate my eyes, the thought of becoming permanently blind unnerved me; but I accepted my misfortune in silence, realizing that personal suffering was nothing compared with the misfortune of one's country.
The following days were terrible to bear, and the nights still worse. To depend on the mercy of the enemy was a precept which only fools or criminal liars could recommend. During those nights my hatred increased- hatred for the originators of this dastardly crime.
THE BEGINNING OF MY POLITICAL ACTIVITIES
A few days after the liberation of Munich I received orders to attend an army course of political lectures. This gave me a chance of meeting fellow soldiers who were of the same way of thinking. We discussed the project of forming a new party.
The requisite impulse came from one of the lecturers. This was Gottfried Feder. In a ruthless and trenchant way he described the double character of the capital engaged in the stock-exchange and in loans, laying bare the fact that this capital is always dependent on interest payments.
The significance of a political philosopher does not depend on the practical success of the plans he lays down, but rather on their absolute truth and the influence they exert on the progress of mankind. If it were otherwise, the founders of religions could not be considered as great men, because their moral aims will never be completely or even approximately carried out in practice.
The great protagonists are those who fight for their ideas and ideals despite the fact that they receive no recognition at the hands of their contemporaries. To this group belong not only the genuinely great statesmen but all the great reformers as well- Frederick the Great, Martin Luther, Richard Wagner.
I understood a truth of transcendental importance for the future of the German people. The absolute separation of stock-exchange capital from the economic life of the nation would make it possible to oppose internationalization in German business.
What we have to fight for is the maintenance of our racial stock unmixed, the freedom and independence of the Fatherland; so that our people may fulfil the mission assigned to it by the Creator. I began to study again the life-work of the Jew, Karl Marx. His 'Capital' became intelligible to me now for the first time.
One participant defended the Jews, which aroused my opposition, and most there supported my views. Consequently I was assigned to a regiment as 'instruction officer'.
I took up my work with the greatest delight and devotion, and discovered a talent for public speaking.
THE GERMAN LABOUR PARTY
One day I received an order to investigate a political association calling itself 'The German Labour Party'. I attended one of their meetings and, when I returned to my barracks, I was faced with the most difficult problem of my life. After two days of careful reflection I declared myself ready to accept membership of the German Labour Party and received a provisional certificate of membership. I was numbered seven.
WHY THE SECOND REICH COLLAPSED
The most facile, and therefore the most generally accepted, way of accounting for the present misfortune is to say that it is the result of a lost war. But that loss was not in itself a cause. Our enemies were not cowards.
Are nations ever ruined by a lost war alone? From time immemorial, the Jews have known how such falsehood and calumny can be exploited. Is not their very existence founded on one great lie, namely, that they are a religious community, whereas in reality they are a race? And what a race! Schopenhauer called the Jew "The Great Master of Lies". Those who do not realize the truth of that statement will never be able to lend a hand in helping Truth to prevail.
Man must realize that a fundamental law of necessity reigns throughout the whole realm of Nature and that his existence is subject to the law of eternal struggle and strife. The weak and hesitating way in which the pre-war government dealt with the virulent spread of syphilis and tuberculosis shows, as elsewhere, that one may defy Nature for a certain period of time; but sooner or later she will take her inexorable revenge. And when man realizes this truth it is often too late.
Our own nobility furnishes an example of the devastating consequences of a persistent refusal to recognize the primary conditions necessary for normal wedlock. Jewish daughters of department store proprietors are looked upon as eligible mates. All this leads to absolute degeneration. The sin against blood and race is the hereditary sin in this world and it brings disaster on every nation that commits it.
To wage war against syphilis means fighting against prostitution, against prejudice, against old-established customs, against current fashion, public opinion, and, not least, against false prudery in certain circles.
Prostitution is a disgrace to humanity and cannot be removed simply by charitable or academic methods, but presupposes the removal of a whole series of contributory circumstances. The first remedy must always be to establish such conditions as will make early marriages possible, especially for young men- for women are, after all, only passive subjects in this matter.
In our present educational system the fight against pollution of the mind must be waged simultaneously with the training of the body.
To-day the whole of our public life may be compared to a hot-house for the forced growth of sexual notions and incitements. This seductive and sensuous atmosphere puts notions into the heads of our youth, making them old before their time. The stage, art, literature, the cinema, the Press and advertisement posters, all must have the stains of pollution removed and be placed in the service of a national and cultural idea.
Sixty years ago a political collapse such as we are experiencing to-day would have been just as inconceivable as the cultural decline which has been manifested in cubist and futurist pictures. Sixty years ago the organizers of so-called dadistic 'experiences' would have been certified for the lunatic asylum, whereas, to-day they are appointed presidents of art societies.
What are Schiller, Goethe and Shakespeare to the heroes of modern German literature? The more vile and miserable the men and products of an epoch, the more they will hate and denigrate the ideal achievements of former generations. If the creative spirit of the Periclean age be manifested in the Parthenon, then the Bolshevist era is manifested through its cubist grimace.
Still another critical symptom has to be considered. Our great modern cities have become the more barren of real works of art the more they increase in population. Even in Rome during the decadence it was not the villas and palaces that filled the most prominent place but rather the temples and the baths, the stadia, the circuses, the aqueducts, etc,. which belonged to the State and therefore to the people as a whole. In medieval Germany the same principle held sway with cathedrals, city-halls, corn exchanges.
If a similar fate should befall Berlin as befell Rome, future generations might gaze upon the ruins of Jewish department stores or joint-stock hotels as the characteristic expressions of the culture of our time.
The general process of disruption has extended to the religious sphere also. While the two Christian denominations maintained missions in Asia and Africa, they were losing millions and millions of adherents at home. And yet the great masses of a nation are not philosophers. For them, faith is the only basis of morality. Until a substitute be available, only fools and criminals would think of abolishing religion.
In the political field, certain anomalies of the Reich foretold disaster. The lack of orientation in German policy was obvious to everyone. Everything subject to the influence of Parliament was done by halves. The foreign policy in matters of alliances was an example- they wished to maintain peace, but they steered straight into war.
Their Polish policy was carried out by half-measures. It resulted neither in a German triumph nor Polish conciliation, and it made enemies of the Russians. Instead of crushing the head of the French hydra once and for all with a mailed fist and granting Alsace-Lorraine equal rights with the other German States, they did neither the one nor the other.
The monarchy had become alien in spirit to the broad masses. This resulted from the fact that the monarchs were not always surrounded by the highest intelligence or of the most upright character.
The army was the only school through which individual Germans were taught not to seek the salvation of their nation in the false ideology of international fraternization between negroes, Germans, Chinese, French and English, etc,. but in the strength and unity of their own national being.
The ultimate and most profound reason of the German downfall is to be found in the fact that the racial problem was ignored- its importance in the historical development of nations was not grasped.
RACE AND PEOPLE
In the garden of Nature an iron law compels the various species to keep within the limits of their own life-forms when propagating and multiplying. The titmouse cohabits only with the titmouse, the finch with the finch, the stork with the stork.
Deviations from this law take place only in exceptional circumstances. But then the protest of Nature appears in the fact that hybrids are denied the ordinary powers of resistance to disease or the natural means of defence.
Such a dispensation of Nature is quite logical. Every crossing between two breeds which are not equal results in a product which holds an intermediate place between the parents. Thus the offspring will be superior to the lower, but not so high as the higher, so that it must eventually succumb in any struggle against the higher species. Only the born weakling can look upon this principle as cruel; for if such a law did not direct the process of evolution then the higher development of organic life would not be possible.
History furnishes us with innumerable instances. It shows that whenever Aryans have mingled their blood with an inferior race the result has been the downfall of the people who were the standard-bearers of a higher culture. In Central and South America the immigrants- mainly of the Latin races- mated with the aborigines, sometimes to a very large extent. But in North America the Teutonic element, which has kept its racial stock pure, has come to dominate the American Continent.
Here we meet the insolent objection, Jewish in its inspiration and typical of the modern pacifist, which says: "Man can control even Nature."
The real truth is that, not only has man failed to overcome Nature in any sphere whatsoever but that at best he has merely succeeded in getting hold of and lifting a tiny corner of the enormous veil which she has spread over her eternal mysteries. He never creates anything. All he can do is to discover something. And not only that. Certain ideas are even confined to certain people.
For example, anyone who sincerely wishes that the pacifist idea should prevail ought to do everything to help the Germans conquer the world. I say this because, unfortunately, only our people fell a prey to this idea. Whether you like it or not, you would have to make up your mind to forget wars if you would achieve the pacifist ideal. Nothing less than this was the plan of the American world-redeemer, Woodrow Wilson.
The pacifist-humanitarian idea may indeed become an excellent one when the most superior type of manhood will have succeeded in subjugating the world. So, first of all, the fight and then pacifism.
It would be futile to attempt to discuss the question as to what race or races were the real founders of all that we understand by the word humanity. In the present time the answer is simple and clear. Every manifestation of human culture, every product of art, science and technical skill, is almost exclusively the product of the Aryan creative power. He is the Prometheus of mankind, from whose shining brow the divine spark of genius has at all times flashed forth, always kindling anew that fire which, in the form of knowledge, illuminated the dark night by drawing aside the veil of mystery and thus showing man how to rise and become master over all the other beings on the earth. Should he be forced to disappear, a profound darkness will descend on the earth; within a few thousand years human culture will vanish and the world will become a desert.
It is not true, as some believe, that Japan adds European technique to a culture of her own. The truth rather is that the foundations of contemporary Japanese life are the enormous scientific and technical achievements of Europe and America, that is to say, of Aryan peoples. Only by adopting these achievements can the Orient progress.
The progress of mankind may be compared to ascending an infinite ladder. One does not reach the higher level without first having climbed the lower rungs.
In this world everything that is not of sound racial stock is like chaff. Every historical event in the world is nothing more nor less than a manifestation of the instinct of racial self-preservation, whether for weal or woe.
Among the most primitive organisms the instinct for self-preservation does not extend beyond the care of the individual ego, thus there is no basis for the establishment of a community; not even that of the family. The society formed by the male with the female calls for the extension of the instinct of self-preservation to protect and defend each other; so that here we find the first, though infinitely simple, manifestation of the spirit of sacrifice. As soon as this spirit extends beyond the narrow limits of the family, we have the conditions under which larger associations and finally even States can be formed.
The readiness to sacrifice one's personal work and, if necessary, even one's life for others shows its most highly developed form in the Aryan race. The greatness of the Aryan is not based on his intellectual powers, but rather on his willingness to devote all his faculties to the service of the community. Every worker and every peasant, every inventor, state official, etc, who works without achieving fortune or prosperity, is a representative of this sublime idea, even though he may never become conscious of the profound meaning of his own activity. Posterity will not remember those who pursued only their own individual interests, but it will praise those heroes who renounced their own happiness.
The Jew offers the most striking contrast to the Aryan. There is probably no other people in the world who have so developed the instinct of self-preservation as the so-called 'chosen' people. The best proof of this statement is found in the simple fact that this race still exists. Where can another people be found that in the course of the last two thousand years has undergone so few changes in mental outlook and character as the Jewish people?
Since the Jew never had a civilization of his own. His intellect has always developed by the use of those cultural achievements which he has found ready-to-hand around him.
Yet Jews completely lack the most essential pre-requisite of a cultural people, namely the idealistic spirit. With the Jewish people the readiness for sacrifice does not extend beyond the simple instinct of individual preservation. This is also true of horses, which unite to defend themselves against any aggressor but separate the moment the danger is over.
In those two royal domains of architecture and music, the Jew has done no original creative work. To what extent the Jew appropriates the civilization built up by others. Even in dramatic art, he is nothing more than a low-class mimic.
Since the Jew has never had a State which was based on territorial delimitations, and therefore never a civilization of his own, the idea arose that here we were dealing Nomads. That is a mischievous mistake. The true nomad does actually possess a definite delimited territory. It is merely that he does not cultivate it, as the settled farmer does.
The life which the Jew lives as a parasite forces him to the systematic use of falsehood, just as naturally as the inhabitants of northern climates are forced to wear warm clothes.
He can live among other nations and States only as long as he succeeds in persuading them that the Jews are not a distinct people but the representatives of a religious community. His success may even go so far that the people who grant him hospitality may be led to believe that the Jew among them is a genuine Frenchman, or Englishman or German or Italian.
On this first and fundamental lie other lies are subsequently based. How much the whole existence of this people is based on a permanent falsehood is proved in a unique way by 'The Protocols of the Elders of Zion', so violently repudiated by the Jews. With groans and moans, the Frankfurter Zeitung repeats again and again that these are forgeries- evidence enough of their authenticity.
The first Jews came into Germania during the period of the Roman invasion as merchants. Slowly but steadily they began to take part in economic life; not as a producer, but only as a middleman, where his commercial cunning made him superior to the Aryans, whose honesty was unlimited. It was he who first introduced the payment of interest on borrowed money.
In times of distress the masses have seized Jewish property and ruined the Jew in their urge to protect themselves against what they consider to be a scourge of God.
In proportion as the powers of kings and princes increased, the Jew sidled up to them. And thus the Court Jew slowly developed into the national Jew.
The Jew gained an increasing influence in all economic undertakings by means of his predominance in the stock-exchange. Simultaneously the Jew gave himself the air of thirsting after knowledge. All the knowledge which he acquires in the schools of others is exploited by him exclusively in the service of his own race.
During this phase of his progress the chief goal of the Jew was the victory of parliamentary democracy. When that moment arrives, then the only objective the workers will have to fight for will be the future of the Jewish people. To all external appearances, Marxism strives to ameliorate the conditions under which the workers live; but in reality its aim is to enslave and thereby annihilate the non-Jewish races.
The propaganda which the freemasons had carried on among the so-called intelligentsia, whereby their pacifist teaching paralysed the instinct for national self-preservation, was now extended to the broad masses of the workers and bourgeoisie by means of the Press.
The Jew will stop at nothing. His utterly low-down conduct is so appalling that one really cannot be surprised if in the imagination of our people the Jew is pictured as the incarnation of Satan and the symbol of evil.
He can afford to call himself a Jew once again, but even here there is another falsehood. When the Zionists try to make the world believe that the new national consciousness of the Jews will be satisfied by the establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine, they have not the slightest intention of building up a State so as to live in it. What they really are aiming at is to establish a central organization for their international swindling and cheating.
The black-haired Jewish youth lies in wait for hours on end, satanically glaring at and spying on the unsuspicious girl whom he plans to seduce, adulterating her blood and removing her from the bosom of her own people. The Jew uses every possible means to undermine the racial foundations of a subjugated people.
The Jews were responsible for bringing negroes into the Rhineland, to bastardize the white race which they hate. For the Jew cannot become master of any except a bastardized people.
Out of the democratic Jew, the Jew of the People, arises the 'Jew of the Blood', the tyrant of the peoples. In Russia the Jew killed or starved thirty millions of the people, by savage fanaticism and inhuman torture, so that a gang of Jewish literati and financial bandits should dominate a great people.
But the death of the victim is followed sooner or later by that of the vampire. If a people refuses to guard and uphold the qualities with which it has been endowed by Nature and which have their roots in the racial blood, then such a people has no right to complain over the loss of its earthly existence.
Everything on this earth can be made into something better. Every defeat may be made the foundation of a future victory. Every lost war may be the cause of a later resurgence. And out of every oppression those forces can develop which bring about a new re-birth of the national soul- provided always that the blood of the people is pure.
But the loss of racial purity degrades men for all time. The physical and moral consequences can never be wiped out.
We were convinced that only by recognizing such truths could we stop the national decline in Germany and lay a granite foundation on which the State could again be built up, an organism created from the soul of the people themselves- a German state in a German nation.
THE FIRST STAGE IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE GERMAN NATIONAL SOCIALIST LABOUR PARTY
In 1918 it had to be clearly recognized that no resurgence of the German nation could take place until we had first restored our national strength to face the outside world. The problem of restoring Germany's power is not a question of how can we manufacture arms but rather a question of how we can produce that spirit which enables a people to bear arms.
The question whether or not a nation be desirable as an ally is likewise not so much determined by mass of arms but by the presence of a sturdy will to national self-preservation. The British nation will therefore be considered as the most valuable ally in the world as long as it can be counted upon to show that brutality and tenacity in its government, as well as in the spirit of the broad masses, which enables it to carry through to victory any struggle that it once enters upon, no matter how long such a struggle may last, or however great the sacrifice that may be necessary or whatever the means that have to be employed.
As early as 1919 we were convinced that the nationalization of the masses would have to constitute the first and paramount aim of the new movement, and that:
(1) No social sacrifice could be considered too great to win over the masses for national revival.
(2) The education of the masses can be carried out only by improving their social conditions.
(3) The nationalization of the broad masses can never be achieved by half-measures, but only by ruthless and devoted insistence. Only the supine bourgeois mind could think that the Kingdom of Heaven can be attained by compromise. The broad masses of a nation are not professors or diplomats, they have a poor acquaintance with abstract ideas. Whoever wishes to win over the masses must know the key that will open the door to their hearts. It is not objectivity, which is a feckless attitude, but a determined will, backed up by force, when necessary.
(4) The soul of the masses can be won only if we are also determined to destroy the enemy that opposes them.
(5) A people that fails to preserve the purity of its racial blood destroys the unity of the soul of the nation.
(6) A movement which sincerely endeavours to bring the German worker back into his folk-community, and rescue him from the folly of internationalism, must wage a vigorous campaign against notions prevalent among industrialists.
(7) This one-sided, clear and definite attitude must be manifested in the propaganda of the movement.
(8) Ends can never be reached by trying to educate the public or influence those in power but only by getting political power.
(9) The nature and internal organization of the new movement make it anti-parliamentarian. One person must have absolute authority and bear all responsibility. Only a man of heroic mould can have the vocation for such a task.
(10) The movement steadfastly refuses to take up any stand in regard to those problems which are outside of its sphere of political work. It looks upon the two religious denominations as equally valuable mainstays.
(11) The problem of the inner organization of the movement is only a necessary evil.
When the first germinal cells of the organization are being formed care must always be taken to exalt the place where the idea originated into a supreme symbol.
The future of a movement is determined by the devotion, and even intolerance, with which its members fight for their cause. They must feel convinced that their cause alone is just, and they must carry it through to success, against other similar organizations in the same field. By amalgamating political organizations approximately alike, certain immediate advantages may be gained, but are bound to become the cause of internal weaknesses.
The greatness of Christianity did not arise from attempts to make compromises with similar philosophical opinions, but by unrelenting and fanatical proclamation and defence of its own teaching.
The movement ought to educate its adherents to the principle that struggle must not be considered a necessary evil but as something to be desired in itself. They must not try to avoid being hated. If a comrade of ours opens a Jewish newspaper in the morning and does not find himself vilified there, then he has spent yesterday to no account.
The movement must use all possible means to cultivate respect for the individual personality. The greatest revolutions and the greatest achievements of this world, its greatest cultural works and the immortal creations of great statesmen, are inseparably bound up with one name which stands as a symbol for them in each respective case. The Jew stigmatizes this honour as 'the cult of personality'.
At our first public meeting, there were only seven people present. Then we had the invitations multigraphed, and had an astonishing success. At seven o'clock 111 persons were present in the Munich Hofbräu Haus Keller. A Munich professor delivered the principal address, and I spoke after him. At the end of the thirty minutes it was quite clear that all the people in the little hall had been profoundly impressed.
People in the small circles of our own movement at that time showed a certain amount of anxiety at the prospect of a coming conflict. But terror cannot be overcome by the weapons of the mind but only by counter-terror.
On our next meeting our audience had increased to more than 200. Two weeks later they amounted to more than four hundred.
I do not set much value on the friendship of people who do not succeed in getting disliked by their enemies. That was why we renamed ourselves The National Socialist German Labour Party.
I shall bring the first part of this book to a close by referring to our first great mass meeting. The great hall was filled to overflowing with nearly 2,000 people. When the last point was reached I had before me a hall full of people united by a new conviction, a new faith and a new will. A fire was enkindled from whose glowing heat the sword would be fashioned which would restore freedom to the German Siegfried.
The Goddess of Vengeance was now getting ready to redress the treason of the 9th of November, 1918. The hall was emptied. The movement was on the march.
END OF VOLUME 1
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