Adolf Hitler - speech to the Wehrmacht
September 13, 1937
For the fourth time now you have assembled here on this field on the occasion of this great day of the nation. Much has changed since then, not for the worse, but all for the better! Today, Germany is more splendid, greater and above all stronger than back then. You yourselves constitute visible proof of this strength! In a few weeks, some of you will leave the barracks and return to civilian life after two years of service for the German Volk and hence for our homeland. Not only have you given these two years to Germany; you, too, have been given them! For in these two years you have not only become soldiers, but above all men, men of whom the nation has reason to be proud and of whom it shall be proud in the future! The evolving German Army has made it possible not only to win external freedom for the German Reich but moreover to commence and perform the great works you see in Germany today. Most of all, it has enabled us to preserve peace for our Volk in a time of unrest and general insecurity. Peoples who were weak have never been blessed by peace, but only those who have been strong.
The fact that Germany is strong again today is something it owes first and foremost to its soldiers! Germany is fond of you, and above all, it is proud of you. For it sees in you the pillars of an immortal, glorious past. You, too, have just as much reason to be fond of Germany, for once more you can be proud of your Volk, your homeland and our German Reich!
Deutschland Sieg Heil!
Adolf Hitler – closing speech at the NSDAP congress in Nuremberg
September 13, 1937
How often we dwell on the question of what would have happened to Germany if Fate had granted us a swift and easy victory in 1914. What we were all striving for at that time with hearts aglow would presumably-seen from a higher vantage point-have been but a misfortune for our Volk. That victory would probably have had extremely grievous consequences. For in the inner sphere, it in particular would have prevented us from gaining the knowledge that today allows us to look back in horror at the path on which that Germany of the past was already making its way. The perceptive few who were preaching caution had lapsed into ridiculousness.
The State, grounded only in the external military means of power which bore it up, would sooner or later have become the annihilator of its own existence and its own means of existence, wholly ignorant of the meaning of the blood-related sources of the Volkskraft! Phenomena such as we have had an opportunity to observe in many other countries after their supposed victory would have descended upon us. Instead of being jerked back from the brink of destruction by a disruption of a catastrophic nature, we would all the more surely have gradually succumbed to the insidious poisons of inner decay of the Volk! In our case, the accuracy of a wise saying can be said to have been proven true: there are times when Providence demonstrates the deepest love it has for its creatures in an act of punishment!
One would have to be incredibly naive to dispute the fact that Bolshevism does indeed have that international character, i.e. a revolutionary character, in an age when Bolshevism hardly allows a day to pass without stressing its mission of world revolution as the be-all and end-all of its program, and hence the basis for its very existence! Only a bourgeois-democratic politician would refuse to believe what the programmatic183 foundation of this Red world movement actually is and what, in reality, is revealed in fact to be the most significant feature of this world movement. National Socialism was not the first to claim that Bolshevism was international; it was Bolshevism itself-the strictest rendering of Marxism-which solemnly proclaimed its international character.
Now, if one of our Western Europeans still insists on denying that Bolshevism is international, i.e. that it uses internationally uniform means and methods to pursue an internationally self-same goal, one is left to fear that, in the near future, we will be hearing from the lips of one such world-wise person correspondingly that National Socialism, contrary to its program, does not intend to stand up for Germany, and neither does Fascism for Italy! I would nonetheless find it regrettable if we were not to be believed. And it pains me just as much that no one even believes Bolshevism when it itself asserts its intentions and proclaims what it is.
Moreover, he who has no concept of the magnitude of this world menace and above all holds, for reasons of domestic and foreign policy, that he is not allowed to take this menace seriously, will all too easily intentionally overlook everything which might perchance be seen to constitute proof of the existence of this world menace.
As National Socialists, we are fully conscious of the origins and conditions of the fight which is today causing unrest in the world. Above all, we comprehend the extent and dimensions of this struggle. It is a gigantic event in terms of world history! The greatest menace with which the culture and civilization of the human race have been threatened since the collapse of the nations in Antiquity.
This crisis cannot be compared to any of the otherwise habitual wars or any of the revolutions that take place so often. No, this is an all-encompassing, general attack against modern societal order, against our spiritual and cultural world. This attack is being launched both against the essential character of the peoples per se, against their inner organization and against the race’s own leadership of these bodies politic, as well as against their spiritual life, their traditions, their economies, and all the other institutions which determine the overall essence, character, and life of these peoples or states. This attack is so extensive that it draws nearly all of the functions of life into the sphere of its actions. The duration of this battle is unforeseeable. One thing which is certain is that, since the birth of Christianity, the triumphant advance of Mohammedanism or the Reformation, nothing of this type has ever before taken place in this world.
What others profess not to see because they simply do not want to see it, is something we must unfortunately state as a bitter truth: the world is presently in the midst of an increasing upheaval, whose spiritual and factual preparation and whose leadership undoubtedly proceed from the rulers of Jewish Bolshevism in Moscow.
When I quite intentionally present this problem as Jewish, then you, my Party Comrades, know that this is not an unverified assumption, but a fact proven by irrefutable evidence.
All our European states originated in what were initially small racial cores but which are to be regarded as the truly powerful and hence determining factors in this constellation. This fact is most pointedly demonstrated in those states in which, as late as our modern times, the formed and guided masses and the forming and guiding powers were not brought into a balance-or perhaps they could not be, but probably this was not even intended. One of these states was Russia. A very thin-not Russian-volklich, i.e. not Slavic- layer of leadership pieced this state together from an assortment of small and even smaller communities to form a virtual colossus of a state, which was seemingly impregnable, but whose greatest weakness always lay in the discrepancy between the number and merit of its ruling class-non-Russian in terms of blood-and the number and merit of its national Russian elements.
Therefore it was particularly easy for a new racial core to successfully penetrate and attack; it intentionally manifested itself as a volklicb leader in disguise in contrast to the old, official leadership of state. Here the Jewish minority, which was in no way proportionate to the Russian Volk itself in terms of numbers, took the detour of appropriating the leadership of the national- Russian proletariat to succeed not only in ousting the former social and state leadership from its position, but in exterminating it without further ado.
Yet for this reason in particular, the Russia of today is basically no different from the Russia of two hundred or three hundred years ago. A brutal dictatorship by a foreign race which has seized utter control of genuine Russentum (Russian civilization) and is exercising that control commensurately.
To the extent that this process of forming a new state came to its conclusion in Russia, one might be able to simply take cognizance of the fact as a historic reality just as with any other similar situation, and leave it at that. Yet now that this Jewish racial core is seeking to bring about the same effects in other peoples and thereby views modern Russia as its already conquered base and bridgehead for further expansion, this problem has exceeded the dimensions of a Russian problem and become a world problem which will be decided one way or another, because it must be decided.
While one part of the “Jewish fellow citizens” demobilizes democracy via the influence of the press or even infects it with their poison by linking up with revolutionary manifestations in the form of peoples’ fronts, the other part of Jewry has already carried the torch of the Bolshevist revolution into the midst of the bourgeois-democratic world without even having to fear any substantial resistance. The final goal is then the ultimate Bolshevist revolution, i.e. not, for example, consisting of the establishment of a leadership of the proletariat by the proletariat, but of the subjugation of the proletariat under the leadership of its new and alien master.
Once the incited, insane masses-gone wild and supported by the asocial elements released from the prisons and penitentiaries-have exterminated the natural, indigenous intelligence of the peoples and brought them to the scaffolds to bleed to death, what will remain as the last bearer of-albeit miserable- intellectual knowledge is the Jew. For one thing should be made clear here: this race is neither spiritually nor morally superior, but in both cases inferior through and through. For unscrupulousness and irresponsibility can never be equated with a truly brilliant disposition. In terms of creativity, it is an untalented race through and through. For this reason, if it seeks to rule anywhere for any length of time, it is forced to undertake the extermination of the former intellectual upper classes of the other peoples. Otherwise it would naturally he defeated by their superior intelligence within a very short time.
That is because, in everything that has to do with true accomplishment, they have always been bunglers, and bunglers they will remain. In the past year, we have shown in a series of alarming statistical proofs that, in the present Soviet Russia of the proletariat, more than eighty percent of the leading positions are held by Jews. This means that not the proletariat is the dictator, but that very race whose Star of David has finally also become the symbol of the so-called proletarian state.185 And incidentally, we have all experienced the same thing in Germany, too, of course. Who were the leaders of our Bavarian soviet republic? Who were the leaders of Spartakus? Who were the real financial backers and leaders of our Communist Party? Now that is something even the most well-meaning Mister World-Democrat can neither do away with nor change: it was none other than the Jews! That is the case in Hungary, too, and in that part of Spain which the truly Spanish people has not yet recaptured.
As you know, in Spain this Jewish Bolshevism proceeded in a similar fashion starting with the detour of democracy up to open revolution. It is a crass misrepresentation of the facts to claim, as is being done, that the Bolshevist oppressors of the Volk there were vested with legal power, while the fighters of national Spain were illegal revolutionaries.
No! We regard General Franco’s men as the genuine and above all lasting Spain, and the usurpers of Valencia as the international revolutionary troop hired by Moscow, a troop which today is ravaging Spain and tomorrow may be ravaging a different state.
In England and France, one professes to be worried about the idea that Spain might even be occupied by Italy or Germany; we are just as appalled in the face of the possibility that it might be conquered by Soviet Russia! By no means would this conquest have to be effected in the form of an occupation by Soviet Russian troops; rather, it will become a fait accompli at that moment when a Bolshevized Spain has become a section, i.e. an integral component, of the Central Bolshevist Office in Moscow-a branch which receives both its political directives and its material subsidies from there. In any case, we principally regard every attempt to further expand Bolshevism in Europe as a shift in the European balance of power.
I am merely stating a fact! Therefore we have a serious interest in preventing this Bolshevist plague from spreading even further in Europe. In other respects, in the course of history we have naturally had a number of confrontations with, for instance, national France. However, somehow and somewhere, we still belong together in the great European family of peoples, most of all when we all look deep into our innermost selves.
It is then I believe that, in essence, we do not really want to miss any of the truly European civilized nations. We have each other to thank not only for a certain amount of aggravation and suffering, but also for an incredible crossfertilization.
We have given each other models, examples, and lessons-just as, on the other hand, we have also given each other a certain amount of pleasure and many things of beauty. If we are just, we have every reason to harbor mutual admiration instead of hate! In this community of the civilized European nations, international Jewish Bolshevism is a totally alien element which has not the slightest contribution to make to our economy or to our culture, but instead wreaks only havoc; which has not a single positive accomplishment to show for itself in an international perspective on European and world life, but merely propagandistic tables of forged figures and rabble-rousing posters.
Furthermore, to us Germans the thought that this Europe could be guided or ruled by Moscow of all places is simply unbearable. The fact that, in other countries, this type of presumptuousness is tolerated as a political demand, is something which we can only register with astonishment and regret. For us, at any rate, the mere idea of taking orders from a world so very far beneath us is just as ridiculous as it is outrageous. Furthermore, the stated goal of an uncivilized, Jewish-Bolshevist, international league of criminals to rule over Germany-an established member-country of European civilization-from a base in Moscow is yet another insult. Moscow can remain Moscow, and Soviet Russia can remain Soviet Russia, for all we care. Our German capital is Berlin in any case, and what is more: Germany, thank God, will always remain Germany! Thus let no one allow himself to be deceived on one point: National Socialism has banished the Bolshevist world menace from within Germany. It has ensured that the scum of Jewish litterateurs alien to the Volk does not dictate over the proletariat, i.e. the German worker, but that instead the German Volk finally comprehends its own destiny and finds its own leadership. It has moreover made our Volk and the Reich immune against Bolshevist contamination.
Apart from this, it will not shrink from countering any repetition of former attacks from within on the sovereignty of our Volk with the most determined means available. We National Socialists grew up fighting this foe. It took us more than fifteen years to destroy it in Germany spiritually, weltanschaulicb, and in point of fact. Neither countless murders and other acts of violence it performed, nor the support it received from the Marxist rulers of the Reich at the time were able to halt our triumphal march. Today we are keeping a close and careful watch to ensure that such a menace will never again descend upon Germany. Yet should anyone have the audacity to bring this menace to or into Germany from without, may he bear in mind that the National Socialist state has also produced the weapon with which it can crush such an attempt in the speed of lightning.
The fact that we were good soldiers is something the world has certainly not yet forgotten. The fact that today we are even better soldiers is something they can take our word for. But the fact that the National Socialist state will stand up and fight for its existence with a different zeal than the bourgeois Reich of old is something no one should doubt! The age when the German Volk suffered from parliamentary infirmity is over, to return no more. We all have one great desire, that Fate might give us the necessary peace and all the time to bring the inner regeneration and the work of our great inner reconstruction to a close, and that means bringing it to a close in a Europe that has once more come to its senses. It is not our intention to thrust our ideas or ideals on anyone else; but let no one attempt to force his opinion upon us. Above all, let the criminal Muscovite sovietism finally cease continuing to expand its barbarism and, if possible, make us unhappy as well.
The age is over when one could unreasonably demand everything from a defenseless Volk.
The bombs that fell on our armored ship not only hit the vessel-called Deutschland-but also met with the response which, from now on, will be dealt out immediately in answer to any such attempt.
Today it is so easy to admire the overall outcome, but so difficult to sense how much work, sacrifice, industry, and initiative was required to reap these results. What are a mere 100,000 men! They stood here group after group, standard after standard, company after company, battalion after battalion, and regiment after regiment. Behind them stand just as many millions of comrades and soldiers, and all of this has been called to life and come to be in the space of a few years, in part from out of nothing, from out of turmoil, and from out of decay.
This tremendous demonstration alone is the result of immeasurable labors.
Now do you understand, why, my Party Comrades, in the face of such brilliant products of human ability and industry, we have given this celebration the name “Party Congress of Labor”?
In a few short hours, the trains with their hundreds of thousands of participants will roll back out into the German Gaus. The peasants and their sons will return to their villages; workers, employees and civil servants will return to their plants and their offices; the soldiers will report to the barracks; youth will go to school-but all of them will think back with throbbing hearts on this further great demonstration of the National Socialist Party and the National Socialist State.
And they will take with them the proud feeling of having again been witnesses of the internal and external uprising of their Volk. Yet may they be conscious that therein a hope of millenniums and the prayer of many generations, the confidence and faith of innumerable great men of our Volk have finally achieved their historic realization. The German nation has been given its Germanic Empire after all.