Adolf Hitler – address to 100,000 Political Leaders
Nuremberg, September 13, 1935
It is good that we are able to see each other like this once a year, you the Fuhrer, and the Fuhrer yourselves. This can also serve as a lesson to all those who would so gladly make a distinction between the Fuhrer and his following, those who are so incapable of understanding that there can be no distinction between us, who would so gladly say: the Fuhrer, yes! But the Party-is that really necessary?195 I do not ask if it is necessary, but if it was necessary! A commander without officers and soldiers-there are those who would gladly welcome that! I will not be the commander without soldiers; I will remain your Fuhrer.
For me, you are the political officers of the German nation, bound to me for better or worse, just as I am bound to you for better or worse. Not one man alone conquered Germany; all united conquered Germany. One man won you over, and you have won over the German Volk!
We who were able to witness the reinstatement of our peerless Army this year to our most proud good fortune, all of us know that its ultimate and greatest strength lies in the Volk which supports it. For no one is in need of idealism more than the soldier. If ever the hour, that difficult, decisive hour of renunciation, should come upon him, what can but help him then? Only the word faith, idealism. Do not be deluded! All other half-measures are insignificant compared to the power of this destiny, this inner voice.
Hence we are particularly pleased today to have in our midst for the first time the representatives and the representation of our new German Volksheer, the Army from which nearly all of us without exception once came forth and to which the German Volk will once again give its sons in the future, handing them over in trust in the hope that they may once again become brave, disciplined, reliable, and self-assured men. We know that our Army is not educating them in warlike militarism any more than we have ever done. It is only educating them to be reliable, decent Volksgenossen who feel faithfully bound to the nation in the hour of need and danger, and if ever Fate were to subject them to the most difficult test of all, they would defend the freedom of their people bravely and decently. That is the reason behind recreating our Army.
It was not created to wage offensive wars, but to protect and to defend our Volk so that Germany may not be made to suffer yet again the sorry fate we were made to bear in the fifteen years behind us. Not in order to deprive other peoples of their freedom, but to protect our German freedom-that is the Army’s purpose. But it will come all the more naturally for this Army to accomplish its difficult offices the healthier the young German man is whom it receives from us.
And that is our task, too, to educate the German man to be politically clean and pure so that he may truly become a powerful member of our Volksgemeinschaft and assimilate for himself as well a taste of this pure, great idealism which reigned during the age of the struggle for German freedom. For as long as this idealism is alive in Germany, Germany shall never die!
Adolf Hitler – address to the German women
Nuremberg, September 13, 1935
Today women’s battalions were being formed in Marxist countries, and to that one could only reply, “That will never happen here! There are things a man does, and he alone is responsible for them. I would be ashamed to be a German man if ever, in the event of war, but a single woman were made to go to the front.” The woman had her own battlefield. With every child to which she gave birth for the nation, she was waging her battle for the nation. The man stands up for the Volk just as woman stands up for the family. A woman’s equal rights lie in the fact that she is treated with the high regard she deserves in those areas of life assigned to her by nature.
Women still respected brave, daring and determined men, and men had always admired and been attracted to feminine women. These were the two opposites which attracted each other in life.
And if good fortune would have it that these two people find each other, then the question of equal rights became superfluous, for it had already been answered by nature: it was no longer equal rights, but a single unity! Man and woman represented two intrinsically separate natures. In men, reason was dominant. But more stable than this was the emotion evidenced in women.
When I returned from prison after thirteen months of imprisonment, when the Party had been shattered, it was above all female party comrades who had held the Movement together. They did not succumb to clever or reasonoriented deliberation, but acted according to their hearts, and they have stood by me emotionally until today.
If our opponents were to allege, “You want to degrade women by assigning to them no other task beyond providing children,” he would reply that it is not a degradation to a woman to become a mother, but the contrary-it is her utmost elevation.
There was, the Fuhrer continued, no greater nobility for a woman than to be the mother of sons and daughters of a Volk. All the members of our youth lining the streets, so strong and beautiful, these beaming faces, these shining eyes-where would they be had not woman after woman been willing to give them the gift of life? The last immortality here on earth lay in preserving the Volk and the Volkstum.
People should not be able to accuse us that we have no understanding of the dignity of women. Quite the opposite! We have been in power now for three years, but I believe that when we have had a National Socialist government for thirty, forty, or fifty years, women’s position will have become quite different from what it was in the past-a position which cannot be gauged politically but only appreciated in human terms. We are happy knowing that the German woman, with her instinctive insight, will understand this.
There was a time when liberalism was fighting for ‘equal rights’ for women, but the faces of German women and German girls were devoid of hope, bleak and sad. And today? Today we see countless beaming, laughing faces. And here again it is woman’s instinct which tells her for good reason: we can laugh once again, for the future of the Volk is guaranteed.
The compensation which National Socialism gives woman in exchange for her work lies in that it is once again training men, real men, men who are decent, who stand erect, who are brave, who love honor. I believe that when, in the past few days, our healthy, unspoilt women have watched the marching columns, these sturdy and faultless young men of the spade, they must have been saying to themselves: what a healthy, marvelous race is growing up here! That is also an achievement which National Socialism has wrought for the German woman in the scope of its attitude toward women in general.
We have now reintroduced general conscription, because it is a wonderful education we wish to confer upon the upcoming young German generation, a wonderful breed which we are rearing in the Hitler Youth, the SA, and the Labor Service. I believe that the German Volk will not grow older during the next few years, but will create the impression that it remains forever young.
“This all applies to our girls, too. They too are growing up in a different world, with different ideas, and they, too, will become healthier than before. Thus the two columns march along their respective paths and will sooner or later encounter one another.”
Thus I believe that it is a marvelous thing after all to live in such an age and to lend a helping hand at one point or another. When I am one day forced to finish this life, my final conviction will be: it was not in vain. It was good, because it was a life of fighting, a life of struggle; because it was a life of work towards an ideal which often seemed so distant and which many a man believed would never be attained. We have reached our goal! That applies to all of you who are fighting with us here. No German generation will be happier in the end than ours. We have experienced infinite hardships. And the fact that we have succeeded in overcoming them and that we will succeed ever better in overcoming them-that is such a wonderful thing that all of us, men and women alike, can be proud and happy and will also be proud and happy one day. The time will come when you will all think back with proud joy on these years of struggling and fighting for this new Germany. Then it will be your most treasured memory that, as German women, you helped wage the battle for our German Volk in this great age of the German renascence and uprising.