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the existence of mankind
The culturally superior, but less ruthless races, would in consequence of their limited soil, have to limit their increase at a time when the culturally inferior but more brutal and more natural to peoples, in consequence of their greater living areas, would still be in a position to increase without limit. In other words: some day the world will thus come into possession of the culturally inferior but more active men.
Then, though in a perhaps very distant future, there will be but two possibilities either the world will be governed according to the ideas of our modern democracy, and then the weight of any decision will result in favor of the numerically stronger races, or the world will be dominated in accordance with the laws of the natural order of force, and then it is the peoples of brutal will who will conquer, and consequently once again not the nation of self restriction.
No one can doubt that this world will some day be exposed to the severest struggles for the existence of mankind. In the end, only the urge for self-preservation can conquer. Beneath it socalled humanity, the expression of a mixture of stupidity, cowardice, and know-it-all conceit, will melt like snow in the March sun. Mankind has grown great in eternal struggle, and only in eternal peace does it perish.
For us Germans the slogan of 'inner colonization' is catastrophic, if for no other reason because it automatically reinforces us in the opinion that we have found a means which, in accordance with the pacifistic tendency, allows us ' to earn ' our right to exist by labour in a life of sweet slumbers. Once this doctrine were taken seriously in our country, it would mean the end of every exertion to preserve for ourselves the place which is our due. Once the average German became convinced that he could secure his life and future in this way, all attempts at an active, and hence alone fertile, defense of German vital necessities would be doomed to failure. In the face of such an attitude on the part of the nation any really beneficial foreign policy could be regarded as buried, and with it the future of the German people as a whole.
Taking these consequences into account, it is no accident that it is always primarily the Jew who tries and succeeds in planting such mortally dangerous modes of thought in our people. He knows his customers too well not to realize that they gratefully let themselves be swindled by any gold-brick salesman who can make them think he has found a way to play a little trick on Nature, to make the hard, inexorable struggle for existence superfluous, and instead, sometimes by work, but sometimes by plain doing nothing, depending on how things 'come out,' to become the lord of the planet.
It cannot be emphasized sharply enough that any German internal colonization must serve to eliminate social abuses particularly to withdraw the soil from wide spread speculation, best can never suffice to secure the future of the nation without the acquisition of new soil.
If we do not do this, we shall in a short time have arrived, not only at the end of our soil, but also at the end of our strength.
Finally, the following must be stated:
The limitation to a definite small area of soil, inherent in internal colonization, like the same final effect obtained by restriction of procreation, leads to an exceedingly unfavorable politicomilitary situation in the nation in question.
The size of the area inhabited by a people constitutes in itself an essential factor for determining its outward security. The greater the quantity of space at the disposal of a people, the greater its natural protection; for military decisions against peoples living in a small restricted area have always been obtained more quickly and hence more easily, and in particular more effectively and completely than can, conversely, be possible against territorially extensive states. In the size of a state's territory there always lies a certain protection against frivolous attacks, since success can be achieved only after hard struggles, and therefore the risk of a rash assault will seem too great unless there are quite exceptional grounds for it. Hence the very size of a state offers in itself a basis for more easily preserving the freedom and independence of a people, while, conversely, the smallness of such a formation is a positive invitation to seizure.
Actually the two first possibilities for creating a balance between the rising population and the stationary amount of soil were rejected in the so-called national circles of the Reich. The reasons for this position were, to be sure, different from those above mentioned: government circles adopted a negative attitude toward the limitation of births out of a certain moral feeling; they indignantly rejected internal colonization because in it they scented an attack against large land holdings and therein the beginning of a wider struggle against private property in general. In view of the form in which particularly the latter panacea was put forward, they may very well have been right in this assumption.
On the whole, the defense against the broad masses was not very skillful and by no means struck at the heart of the problem.
Thus there remained but two ways of securing work and bread for the rising population.
3. Either new soil could be acquired and the superfluous millions sent off each year, thus keeping the nation on a self sustaining basis; or we could
4. Produce for foreign needs through industry and commerce, and defray the cost of living from the proceeds.
In other words: either a territorial policy, or a colonial and commercial policy.
Both ways were contemplated, examined, recommended, and combated by different political tendencies, and the last was finally taken.
The healthier way of the two would, to be sure, have been the first.
The acquisition of new soil for the settlement of the excess population possesses an infinite number of advantages, particularly if we turn from the present to the future.
For once thing, the possibility of preserving a healthy peasant class as a foundation for a whole nation can never be valued highly enough. Many of our present-day sufferings are only the consequence of the unhealthy relationship between rural and city population A solid stock of small and middle peasants has at all times been the best defense against social ills such as we possess today. And, moreover this is the only solution which enables a nation to earn its daily bread within the inner circuit of its economy. Industry and commerce recede from their unhealthy leading position and adjust themselves to the general framework of a national economy of balanced supply and demand. Both thus cease to be the basis of the nation's sustenance and become a mere instrument to that end. Since they now have only a balance ' Aberdeen domestic production and demand in all fields, they make the Subsistence of the people as a whole more or less independent foreign countries, and thus help to secure the freedom of the state and the independence of the nation, particularly in difficult Periods.
It must be said that such a territorial policy cannot be fulfilled in the Cameroons, but today almost exclusively in Europe. We must, therefore, coolly and objectively adopt the standpoint that it can certainly not be the intention of Heaven to give one people fifty times as much land and soil in this world as another. In this case we must not let political boundaries obscure for us the boundaries of eternal justice. If this Earth really has room for all to live in, let us be given the soil we need for our livelihood.
True, they will no t willingly do this. But then the law of self-preservaion goes into effect; and what is refused to amicable methods, it is up to the fist to take. If our forefathers had let their decisions depend on the same pacifistic nonsense as our contemporaries, we should possess only a third of our present territory; but in that case there would scarcely be any German people for us to worry about in Europe today. No-it is to our natural determination to fight for our own existence that we owe the two Ostmarks of the Reich and hence that inner strength arising from the greatness of our state and national territory which alone has enabled us to exist up to the present.
And for another reason this would have been the correct solution
Today many European states are like pyramids stood on their heads. Their European area is absurdly small in comparison to their weight of colonies, foreign trade, etc. We may say: summit in Europe, base in the whole world; contrasting with the American Union which possesses its base in its own continent and touches the rest of the Earth only with its summit. And from this comes the immense inner strength of this state and the weakness of most European colonial powers.
Nor is England any proof to the contrary, since in consideration of the British Empire we too easily forget the Anglo-Saxon world as such. The position of England, if only because of her linguistic and cultural bond with the American Union, can be compared to no other state in Europe.
For Germany, consequently, the only possibility for carrying out a healthy territorial policy lay in the acquisition of new land in Europe itself. Colonies cannot serve this purpose unless they seem in large part suited for settlement by Europeans. But in the nineteenth century such colonial territories were no longer obtainable by peaceful means. Consequently, such a colonial policy could only have been carried out by means of a hard struggle which, however, would have been carried on to much better purpose, not for territories outside of Europe, but for land on the home continent itself.
Such a decision, it is true, demands undivided devotion. It is not permissible to approach with half measures or even with hesitation a task whose execution seems possible only by the harnessing of the very last possible ounce of energy. This means that the entire political leadership of the Reich should have devoted itself to this exclusive aim; never should any step have been taken, guided by other considerations than the recognition of this task and its requirements. It was indispensable to see dearly that this aim could be achieved only by struggle, and consequently to face the contest of arms with calm and composure.
All alliances, therefore, should have been viewed exclusively from this standpoint and judged according to their possible utilization. If land was desired in Europe, it could be obtained by and large only at the expense of Russia, and this meant that the new Reich must again set itself on the march along the road of the Teutonic Knights of old, to obtain by the German sword sod for the German plow and daily bread for the nation.
For such a policy there was but one ally in Europe: England.
With England alone was it possible, our rear protected, to begin the new Germanic march. Our right to do this would have been no less than the right of our forefathers. None of our pacifists refuses to eat the bread of the East, although the first plowshare in its day bore the name of 'sword' !
Consequently, no sacrifice should have been too great for winning England's willingness. We should have renounced colonies and sea power, and spared English industry our competition.
Only an absolutely clear orientation could lead to such a goal: renunciation of world trade and colonies; renunciation of a German war fleet; concentration of all the state's instruments of power on the land army.
The result, to be sure, would have been a momentary limitation but a great and mighty future.
There was a time when England would have listened to reason on this point, since she was well aware that Germany as a result of her increased population had to seek some way out and either find it with England in Europe or without England in the world.
And it can primarily be attributed to this realization if at the turn of the century London itself attempted to approach Germany. For the first time a thing became evident which in the last years we have had occasion to observe in a truly terrifying fashion. People were unpleasantly affected by the thought of having to pull Fngland's chestnuts out of the fire; as though there ever could be an alliance on any other basis than a mutual business deal. And with England such a deal could very well have been made. British diplomacy was still clever enough to realize that no service can be expected without a return.
Just suppose that an astute German foreign policy had taken over the role of Japan in 1904, and we can scarcely measure the consequences this would have had for Germany.
There would never have been any 'World War.'
The bloodshed in the year 1904 would have saved ten times as much in the years 1914 to 1918.
And what a position Germany would occupy in the world today!
In that light, to be sure, the alliance with Austria was an absurdity.
For this mummy of a state allied itself with Germany, not in order to fight a war to its end, but for the preservation of an eternal peace which could astutely be used for the slow but certain extermination of Germanism in the monarchy.
This alliance was an impossibility for another reason: because we could not expect a state to take the offensive in championing national German interests as long as this state did not possess the power and determination to put an end to the process of de-Germanization on its own immediate borders. If Germany did not possess enough national awareness and ruthless determination to snatch power over the destinies of ten million national comrades from the hands of the impossible Habsburg state, then truly we had no right to expect that she would ever lend her hand to such farseeing and bold plans. The attitude of the old Reich on the Austrian question was the touchstone of its conduct in the struggle for the destiny of the whole nation.
In any case we were not justified in looking on, as year after year Germanism was increasingly repressed, since the value of Aushia's fitness for alliance was determined exclusively by the preservation of the German element.
This road, however, was not taken at all.
These people feared nothing so much as struggle, yet they were finally forced into it at the most unfavorable hour.
They wanted to run away from destiny, and it caught up with them. They dreamed of preserving world peace, and landed in the World War.
And this was the most significant reason why this third way of molding the German future was not even considered. They knew that the acquisition of new soil was possible only in the East, they saw the struggle that would be necessary and yet wanted peace at any price; for the watchword of German foreign policy had long ceased to be: preservation of the German nation by all methods; but rather: preservation of world peace by all means. With what success, everyone knows.
I shall return to this point in particular.
Thus there remained the fourth possibility
Industry and world trade, sea power and colonies.
Such a development, to be sure, was at first easier and also more quickly attainable. The settlement of land is a slow process, often lasting centuries; in fact, its inner strength is to be sought precisely in the fact that it is not a sudden blaze, but a gradual yet solid and continuous growth, contrasting with an industrial development which can be blown up in the course of a few years, but in that case is more like a soapbubble than solid strength. A fieet, to be sure, can be built more quickly than farms can be established in stubborn struggle and settled with peasants, but it is also more rapidly destroyed than the latter.
If, nevertheless, Germany took this road, she should at least have clearly recognized that this development would some day likewise end in struggle. Only children could have thought that they could get their bananas in the 'peaceful contest of nations,' by friendly and moral conduct and constant emphasis on their peaceful intentions, as they so high-soundingly and unctuously babbled; in other words, without ever having to take up arms. No: if we chose this road, England would some day inevitably become our enemy. It was more than senseless-but quite in keeping with our own innocence-to wax indignant over the fact that England should one day take the liberty to oppose our peaceful activity with the brutality of a violent egoist.
It is true that we, I am sorry to say, would never have done such a thing.
If a European territorial policy was only possible against Russia in alliance with England, conversely, a policy of colonies and world trade was conceivable only against England and with Russia. But then we had dauntlessly to draw the consequences- and, above all, abandon Austria in all haste.
Viewed from all angles, this alliance with Austria was real madness by the turn of the century.
But we did not think of concluding an alliance with Russia against England, any more than with England against Russia, for in both cases the end would have been war, and to prevent this we decided in favor of a policy of commerce and industry. In the 'peaceful economic ' conquest of the world we possessed a recipe which was expected to break the neck of the former policy of violence once and for all.l Occasionally, perhaps, we were not quite sure of ourselves, particularly when from time to time incomprehensible threats came over from England; therefore, we decided to build a fleet, though not to attack and destroy England, but for the 'defense' of our old friend 'world peace' and 'peaceful ' conquest of the world. Consequently, it was kept on a somewhat more modest scale in all respects, not only in number but also in the tonnage of the individual ships as well as in armament, so as in the final analysis to let our 'peaceful' intentions shine through after all.
The talk about the 'peaceful economic' conquest of the world was possibly the greatest nonsense which has ever been exalted to be a guiding principle of state policy. What made this nonsense even worse was that its proponents did not hesitate to call upon England as a crown witness for the possibility of such an achievement. The crimes of our academic doctrine and conception of history in this connection can scarcely be made good and are only a striking proof of how many people there are who 'learn' history without understanding or even comprehending it. England, in particular, should have been recognized as the striking refutation of this theory; for no people has ever with greater brutality better prepared its economic conquests with the sword, and later ruthlessly defended theme than the English nation. Is it not positively the distinguishing feature of British statesmanship to draw economic acquisitions from political strength, and at once to recast every gain in economic strength into political power? And what an error to believe that England is personally too much of a coward to stake her own blood for her economic policy! The fact that the English people possessed no 'people's army' in no way proved the contrary; for what matters is not the momentary military form of the fighting forces, but rather the will and determination to risk those which do exist. England has always possessed whatever armament she happened to need. She always fought with the weapons which success demanded. She fought with mercenaries as long as mercenaries sufficed; but she reached down into the precious blood of the whole nation when only such a sacrifice could bring victory; but the determination for victory, the tenacity and ruthless pursuit of this struggle, remained unchanged.
In Germany, however, the school, the press, and comic magazines cultivated a conception of the Englishman's character, and almost more so of his empire, which inevitably led to one of the most insidious delusions; for gradually everyone was infected by this nonsense, and the consequence was an underestimation for which we would have to pay most bitterly. This falsification went so deep that people became convinced that in the Englishman they faced a business man as shrewd as personally he was unbelievably cowardly. The fact that a world empire the size of the British could not be put together by mere subterfuge and swindling was unfortunately something that never even occurred to our exalted professors of academic science. The few who raised a voice of warning were ignored or killed by silence. I remember well my comrades' looks of astonishment when we faced the Tommies in person in Flanders. After the very first days of battle the conviction dawned on each and every one of them that these Scotsmen did not exactly jibe with the pictures they had seen fit to give us in the comic magazines and press dispatches.
It was then that I began my first reflections about the importance of the form of propaganda.
This falsification, however, did have one good side for those who spread it: by this example, even though it was incorrect, they were able to demonstrate the correctness of the economic conquest of the world. If the Englishman had succeeded, we too were bound to succeed, and our definitely greater honesty, the absence in us of that specifically English 'perfidy,' was regarded as a very special plus. For it was hoped that this would enable us to win the affection, particularly of the smaller nations, and the confidence of the large ones the more easily.
It did not occur to us that our honesty was a profound horror to the others, if for no other reason because we ourselves believed all these things seriously while the rest of the world regarded such behavior as the expression of a special slyness and disingenuousness, until, to their great, infinite amazement, the revolution gave them a deeper insight into the boundless stupidity of our honest convictions.
However, the absurdity of this 'economic conquest' at once made the absurdity of the Triple Alliance clear and comprehensible. For with what other state could we ally ourselves? In alliance with Austria, to be sure, we could not undertake any military conquest, even in Europe alone. Precisely therein consisted the inner weakness of the alliance from the very first day. A Bismarck could permit himself this makeshift, but not by a long shot every bungling successor, least of all at a time when certain essential premises of Bismarck's alliance had long ceased to exist; for Bismarck still believed that in Austria he had to do with a German state. But with the gradual introduction of universal suffrage, this country had sunk to the status of an unGerman hodgepodge with a parliamentary government.
Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler: Chapters Below.
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