Gareth Jones

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Sept. 1932.

Dear Gareth,

You have probably read about the great Steel Helmet demonstration held under the protection of the Government, which was the most overwhelming manifestation of the "front line" spirit which we have ever had; and I am very proud of it.  I am very sorry that I could not be there, but my son attended and has described everything in so detailed a manner that I seem to see it before my eyes.

Germany  is now at a turning point, both in home and foreign affairs.

In home affairs  there are two phenomena.  The first is the economic crisis , which hits us Germans in a particular form.  Since the inflation Germany has been bled dry; our capital disappeared; there are no more reserves, which can be called upon in times of stress.  The crisis has made itself felt in the smallest of workers' homes so cruelly that it is just as if you cut into their living flesh.  I read that the weavers of Lancashire are striking because their wages are to be lowered

In Germany no worker think of striking.  He is glad if he is able to earn anything at all.  There have been three, four, or five reductions of salaries  in the middle classes ( officials etc.)  We all live from hand to mouth.  Taxes are terrible and the standard of living has sunk so low that it cannot go lower.  We have to pay income tax here on a wage of £60 upwards, so that the masses of workers who are spared in England have to pay taxes.  Business  is at a standstill.  Tariff walls throttle our exports; and in the home market there is no money  to buy.  It makes one despair.

" Do you think that a parliamentary regime can settle this situation?  And here I come to the second point the ending off the Parliamentary System.  Bruning introduced a veiled dictatorship, and von Papen is merely continuing this.  But now we are changing from the "wait and see" attitude to the “up and do" policy.  We are tired of everlasting waiting.  We  want to see what is going to happen.  And therefore we are for the von Papen Government, because he is against the Parliamentary system, and because they not only publish a fine program to overcome the crisis, but they have the courage to provide the mechanism and to set it going.  They are risking a lot, it is true, but fortune helps the brave!  ( Fortes fortuna adjuvat.)  We are now going to fight the depression, with the weapons in our hand and we are confident of victory.  The Stock Exchange is the best  barometer and that shows that hope is springing up in our breasts.  

"The Nazis  believe in the "Third Empire" and think that if they have all the power in their hands everything will be all right..  My personal conviction is that Hitler lost a great chance when he left the President's Palace blushing all over.  He himself would have, I believe, readily accepted the offer, but he is too much under the influence of his  Radical leaders.  The Nazis fear that they will lose a lot of their adherents if they make compromises and they do not want a new election campaign. Moreover, Hitler’s unwise actions in the matter of the "five heroes of Potempa" have lost him a lot of support.                         

“We must soon have a reform of the voting system and raise the age of franchise and also introduce the personal element into politics again.  We want to vote for men of flesh and blood, not for a list of names as we do now.

“In Foreign policy the question of re-arming is now the most important.  The German aide-memoire seems to have caused a great sensation.  In England they talk about "diplomatic clumsiness."  Warsaw and Paris are angry.  It is just as if one had put one's finger into a wasps' nest.  But surely after the fiasco of the Disarmament Conference the German démarche was the natural consequence and it is quite as natural that Germans of responsibility should speak out their minds frankly and freely.  Schleicher is speaking what every nationally minded German feels in his heart.  We Germans have had enough of the underhanded ways of international politics.  We  want to know where we stand.  The patience of our whole people is at an end.  For thirteen years we have been rigidly bound to the paragraphs of the Treaty of Versailles, which demand a thousand and one things from us.  But the Allies have conscientiously evaded the fulfilment of the  few obligations which they took upon themselves more for the sake of the "beau geste" than in real sincerity.

"The worst of it all is that the French still put the sole blame for the War upon Germany and cannot get rid of the conviction that the naughty boy must remain branded for ever and ever.  All the stipulations of the Treaty of Versailles depend on this belief; and outside France it has been recognized that they must be revised.  Abolition of Reparations was only a step along this path of revision; then general disarmament or German re-arming; and then comes naturally the question of the Eastern frontiers.

"The French stated that no sooner would we be free of reparations than we would spend the money (where is it?) on armaments.  But it is not a question of money.  It is  a question or the national honour of a great people whose will to live cannot be suppressed for all times.  What is right for other nations, should be right for Germany.  That is not chauvinism; that is just commonsense.  We do not want to make War; we feel, however, that the surrounding of Germany by large armies is a threat of war.  Moreover, you have just to look at the map to see  that readiness for defense is a necessary tradition for the German people.  We are pacifists in the sense that we want friendly settlement of international problem; but we are not pacifists in the sense that we must give all our military power up and  thus encourage our neighbours to hit us about,) ( look what the Lithuanians did at Memel.) 

And now just a word about the revision of the Eastern frontiers, which I call the third step of our natural revision.  The Corridor must disappear.  There are only two alternatives; either Danzig and East Prussia will become German or they will become Polish; and we know what they ought to be. 

With heartiest greetings, 










Adolf Hitler, Chancellor of Germany.


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