The Thousand Conspiracy - Secret Germany Behind the Mask
The Thousand Conspiracy - Secret Germany Behind the Mask
Charles Scribner’s Sons©1943
381 pps. – First Edition – Out-of-print
AFTER JANUARY 30, 1933, every one of Hitler's decisions, without exception, accorded with Junker interests. No act of his can be found which in the slightest degree harmed these interests. From the moment he took the reins of power no one ever spoke of the Osthilfe scandal again (although previously it had often been stirred up by Nazi Deputies in the Reichstag) or of "colonization" on Junker land. The different antiJunker slogans of early Nazism were definitely buried by Hitler. The Junkers and Hindenburg breathed a sigh of relief.
This business disposed of work began in earnest on the Prusso-Teutonic scheme.
The entire plan carried out by Hitler corresponded point by point with Prusso-Teutonic intentions. The details are well known. Decree-laws gave Hitler dictatorial powers all along the line. This meant the end of what still survived of the representative system and individual liberties in Germany. These transformations had been planned for. It was only the methods of accomplishing them that were original and bore the Hitlerian stamp. The burning of the Reichstag on February 27, 1933, was arranged to make people believe that the Communists were responsible for it and make them admit that it was necessary to vest unlimited power in Hitler to save the country from Communism. In contrast to the previous regionalistic character of Nazism, Hitler abolished every trace of autonomy in the various States, and subordinated all Germany to the domination of Berlin. The masses, deprived of their leaders by the Felime, did not protest.
Making use of his dictatorial powers Hitler took the neces-sary steps to stand in well with every part of the PrussoTeutonic group. He introduced measure after measure to satisfy the Junkers and the big industrialists. He flattered the Reichswehr too and tried to make it forget that Schleicher, the man of the Reichswehr, had been replaced by himself as the head of the government. As for Schleicher, the latter's grudge was against von Papen rather than Hitler-because he believed it was the former who had been principally responsible for his downfall. He never realized that, in the last analYsis, everything had been organized by Hitler.
Denying the Past
But Hitler had a revolutionary past which might be embarrassing to the interests he was now serving. He had hoisted himself to power by fulminating for years against existing power, including the Prusso-Teutonic forces.
Originally Hitler was simply an agitator without a definite purpose, ready to ally himself with any group of interests, if he saw some advantage to himself from such an alliance. Among his faithful followers were sincere men like Gregor Strasser, who had strong German nationalist feelings but moved in a direction opposed to Prussianism. They ardently desired a German Federation free of any Prussian tinge. While the National Socialist party had had its headquarters in Munich, it had often displayed a Bavarian-inspired regional resistance to the centralizing pressure of Prussia. From time to time also, the Nazi party had appeared to be a movement with socialistic tendencies, opposed to Junker feudalism. Roehm's views were of this character, though clearly he was Strasser's moral inferior. But Hitler, who did not feel constrained by any basic principles and who made allies where he could (or rather, wherever his alert opportunism might lead him), surrounded himself also with men like Goering, the Prussian officer type; like Alfred Rosenberg, who dreamed of a new Prusso-Teutonic religion; and like Goebbels, who would have sold his soul to anyone, but who concluded that selling it to the Prussians would be most profitable.
Despite his numerous ties with Prussian interests, for a long time Hitler would eat at anyone's table. His definite alliance with the Prusso-Teutonic forces was not consummated until early in 1933, Without it he would never have been able to accede to power, nor could he have risen to international importance. He would never have been more than a picturesque demagogue in the arena of internal German politics. Hitler was never a world threat until the support of Prusso-Teutonic forces gave him the key to power.
The left wing of his party, Roehm and his three million SA, had taken his earlier promises seriously. These folk no longer understood what was happening. They had believed that the hour of revolution had struck, and demanded changes which might be extremely annoying to the Prussian clique Hitler was now planning to serve. Roehm went so far as to demand control of the Reichswehr by the SA and for himself powers superior to the generals. Decidedly, he did not yet understand what was going on.
The man in Hitler's entourage who. had "understood" from the very beginning was Goering. He had always had personal ties with the Prussian powers. He now put himself more fully at their service. Consequently there was to be no change in his relationships with them and he was to be rewarded for his attitude: he would be permitted to set, up his "Hermann Goeringwerke, A. G." within the empire of German heavy industry.
Hitler's accession to power became possible because of the confidence of the Prusso-Teutonics. He was well aware that he would be unable to maintain that power unless he managed to preserve this confidence. But the embarrassing activity of Roehm and his troops was imperiling it. Gregor Strasser was still estranged from the throne and his silence signified a con
stant reproach to Hitler, reminding him that he had been false to his past. Kahr, leader of the Bavarian Separatists, formerly allied with Hitler, failed also to understand the Chancellor's alliance with the Prussian forces against whom they had striven together. This whole set was sowing unrest among militant Nazis and creating difficulties for the new Chancellor.
Killing the Past
In the spring of 1934 the Prusso-Teutonics became increasingly worried over the restlessness in the left wing of the Nazi party. Their cabinet "liaison officer," von Papen, decided to post a warning. On June 17, 1934, he delivered a speech severely criticizing the revolutionary phases of the Nazi regime. This meant obviously that the Prusso-Teutonics were wondering whether after all they had made a good choice in the person of Hitler, and whether they should not replace him. Von Papen doubtless hoped that as a result of this speech Hitler might be forced out and he himself might again succeed to the office. He was adaptable and managed to fit himself into a subordinate office, but if the necessity for change arose von Papen was not averse to playing first fiddle himself, under the baton, of course, of the same band-leaders as before.
But Hitler clung desperately to his office and was prepared for any sacrifice to keep it. To meet the situation he improvised, as so often in his career, and his improvisation bore the usual stamp of his intuitive brutality. Goering had the same understanding of affairs as he, and followed him wholeheartedly, while Goebbels and Hess trailed along in more retiring fashion.
The bloody purge of June 30, 1934, born of this inspiration, was a master stroke. Hitler organized it solely to regain the confidence of the Prussian clique. Gregor Strasser and Roehm were executed. They were the ones who had wished to proceed with the National Socialist revolution and had been reproaching Hitler for his alliance with Junkers and big industry. Schleicher was also killed. Despite his origin he had dared while in power to further a policy opposing Junker interests. Moreover, he remembered his negotiations with Strasser and Roehin and might possibly reveal at some future date the promises both had made in Hitler's name (and surely with his consent) for the purpose of arousing him to action against the Junkers. If Schleicher had survived the execution of Strasser and Roehm, he might at any moment have become an extremely embarrassing witness. Kahr naively had signed his own death warrant by reminding Hitler that he had once been on the other side of the fence, with the Bavarian Separatists against the Prussian powers.
Von Papen's arrest on the same date was necessary to make him clearly understand that Hitler had no intention of abandoning the position of "first fiddle." He had to accept with a smile the execution of his assistants. They had been unwise enough to draw up the speech delivered by von Papen and had dared to recommend that the powers behind the scenes accord their confidence to someone other than Hitler. Since they were persons of no importance, no one would protest their deaths.
Eventually von Papen was freed and was permitted to continue "to serve." The bonds between him. and the, Prusso-Teutonic forces were too close to allow Hitler to sacrifice him entirely. He deserved a warning and Hitler was satisfied with that much.
By executing Schleicher, Kahr, Strasser, Roehrr-, and numerous other militant members of his own party having similar tendencies, Hitler had silenced embarrassing witnesses of his past. He had equally in this way arrested any future desire, within the Nazi party, to proceed in a direction opposing the interests of the Prussian forces. Besides he could now say to his Prusso-Teutonic masters: "For you have I sacrificed my best friends. I have eliminated Schleicher as well, who dared oppose you. What better proof could I furnish of my absolute devotion to your interests?"
True, the Reichswehr, which was part of the Prusso-Teutonic clan, was angry at him for Schleicher's death. But Hitler knew that Junkers and industrialists were more powerful within the group than the Reichswehr, and in the course of his career he had never hesitated to betray weaker interests for the advantage of stronger ones. Possessing the confidence of Junkers and industrialists, he was certain that nothing could happen to him, and now that the general who had been bothering him was no longer present, he applied himself thenceforward to appeasing the Reichswehr too. Like a real "confidence man" he knew the best methods to regain the confidence of those whom he had tricked. Early in January, 1935 he read a declaration before an officers' society restoring Schleicher's "honor," the officers were pleased, and tranquility returned.
The contempt which the Prussian General Staff felt for the Austrian Corporal did not disappear overnight, but they no longer disputed his orders. Despite appearances to the contrary, orders were no longer given in his name, nor in the name of Nazism (which had changed completely from its earlier form). Hitler was now speaking in the very name of the ancient Prusso-Teutonic caste of which the army officers were members, and whose supreme servant Hitler had become.
The Anti-Semitic Camouflage
Since then, what is now known as Nazi Germany has been the very prototype of what the Prusso-Teutonics might have dreamed in their most optimistic moments. Hitler had supplied the methods but it was the Prusso-Teutonic scheme which had taken shape: Hitler had merely contributed the anti-Semitic note to the choruses, which would certainly not displease the Prusso-Teutonics.
Anti-Semitic camouflage has been put by Hitler to excellent tactical advantage. He knew that he could maintain his influence over the masses if he succeeded in preserving the revolutionary appearance of his movement. In the past he had berated Junkers, heavy industry, Jews and Communists indiscriminately. He could no longer say anything against Junkers and the industrialists-they were now his masters. There remained the Jews and Communists. To make up for what he had lost in area of attack he would intensify his brawling against the latter two groups. Former Communists were more numerous in Germany than Jews; it was therefore chiefly against the latter that he loosed his attacks. It was always preferable to march first against the weakest minority, thereby winning the sympathies of all who were not affected by these attacks and who consequently believed themselves privileged.
Julius Streicher, filth-mongering editor of the Stuermer, had never been in the circle of Hitler's intimates. His movement had evolved on the fringe of the Nazi party. Nevertheless ever since he came into power Hitler drew from Streicher the inspiration for his anti-Semitic campaigns. Once he arrived at the conclusion, for the reasons stated, that it was good policy to intensify this campaign, it was natural, in order to go about it in the best way, for him to call upon the specialist.
One should not for a moment forget that the anti-Semitic movement was, for Hitler, chiefly a "smoke-screen" which served to, hide his real intentions. The suffering of Jews in Germany and in territories occupied by the Nazis deserves all our sympathy, but the real danger which Hitler represents is quite another. Hitler prefers to place "the struggle against the Jews" in the foreground of his ambitions and from time to time "the struggle against Communists." The Teutonic
Knights when they left for the Borussian country had constantly on their tongues "the struggle against the pagans," when actually they were thinking of conquest and nothing else. The same class has preserved through the ages, from the thirteenth century to our day, the same ambitions for unlimited conquest. This class and their ambitions have been hidden, at various points in Prussian history, behind different screens. Now this front is called "Hitler," as tomorrow it may be called "Goering," "von Papen," or "Thyssen." The men have changed through the ages but the forces controlling them and the methods employed have remained the same.
We may add that Fritz von Thyssen's "flight" to Paris in April, 1940 was clearly designed to build up his prestige in the eyes of the Allies and to use him, if it becomes necessary to sacrifice Hitler, as a new front behind which the PrussoTeutonic game could be carried on. Indeed, in the beginning of the war, Germany's masters were somewhat uncertain about the results they might expect from Hitler's blitz technique. Thyssen's trip to Paris was decided upon in order to prepare for a new camouflage in case of an unsatisfactory outcome of the war.
The successful invasion of France made such precautions appear to be superfluous. After Thyssen's return to Germany, "under heavy guard" to keep up appearances, it was learned that he was living quietly in a sanitarium in a fashionable Berlin suburb, instead of having been executed for having turned "traitor"—as everybody would have expected.
Serving His Masters
It is a well-known fact that Hitler succeeded to power through von Papen's intrigues and with the support of Junkers and heavy industry. Nevertheless, most authors conclude that Hitler, after getting hold of the reins of the government, devoted his attention first of all to imposing the Nazi regime upon Germany and subduing every other power there, including the Prusso-Teutonics.
Exactly the opposite is true. Hitler, in order to become Chancellor, concluded a bargain with the Prusso-Teutonic powers and to this day has rigidly adhered to that bargain. It is true that ever since this agreement was made Germany has appeared in the eyes of the world in the guise of "the Nazi regime." It must not be forgotten, however, that Hitler has permitted to remain alive only as much of the Nazi system as suits the Prussian powers. He has suppressed everything that ran counter to those forces, including the "socialistic" and "revolutionary" nature of Nazism. The word "Nazi" has taken, since 1933-1934, a different meaning from what it had before, narrower and broader at the same time: narrower because it no longer corresponds at all to the program of early Nazism, and broader because of its use as a new cloak for Prusso-Teutonic ambitions.
In practice this means that Hitler, unpredictable character though he is, acts as leader only within certain limits, and these limits are prescribed by the powers operating as his "bosses." He has never come to any decision which would not have been fully approved by the Junkers and heavy industry, preponderant elements of the Prusso-Teutonic group. He appears now and then to be in disagreement with the Generals, but then it should not be forgotten that the Reichswehr is only a kind of "Junior partner" in the Prussian company. Because of the professional pride which has always characterized military career men everywhere, the Reichswehr does not always submit blindly to the will of its associates. This was evident even in Schleicher's time and more recently as well, when, for example, General von Brauchitsch was recalled. Hitler acts a bit more freely toward the Reichswehr than toward his other partners, for, as in the days of Schleicher, he depends for support chiefly on the Junkers and big industry who, by reason of their economic importance, are his real masters.
"Nationalists" and "Prusso-Teutonics" Are Not Identical
What may have deceived those who think that Nazism has overcome the forces which promoted its access to power is the fact that the rightist parties have been liquidated by Hitler just as thoroughly as the parties of the left. Hugenberg was forced to dissolve his party and had himself to resign from the first Hitler cabinet on June 2 7, 1933 .
The misapprehension stems from the fact that one may confuse "rightist parties" with "Prusso-Teutonic powers." The parties of the right were, indeed, liquidated by Hitler but not the forces behind them.
Hitler considered the rightist parties as rivals. It is therefore understandable that one of his first considerations should have been to destroy them. But he knew that these parties were only fronts for more powerful forces. He never attempted to eliminate these forces for which he had always had a great respect. All he wanted was merely to become their sole aged and sole facade for the future. On this condition, he was ready to serve them blindly.
The highly competitive struggle between the so-called German Nationalists and Hitler was perfectly defined by Robert d'Harcourt on February 20, 1933, barely three weeks after Hitler's accession to power, in the French Catholic review, Etudes:
"Rarely have two parties waged a struggle as fierce as the Racists have against the supporters of Hugenbergy. From the beginning a great gulf opened between them in their differing attitudes toward capital, or fixed fortune. The former group based their stand on the economic depression debilitating Germany. They themselves had more than once quite cynically acknowledged that German misery was their prime ally. They had found in the bitterness and spirit of revolt of the masses and in the social climate in general, a springboard which they energetically exploited. To the young, and also to the embittered, they appeared to be revolutionaries. Their greatest strength was a vast stock of vague expectations and confidence in the overthrow of things as they were. In the eyes of the discontented unstable element the German nationalists [i.e., the Hugenberg followers] had the disadvantage of appearing as a party of money-bags, of gorged individuals—and at the same time, a mummified group. All the forces of reaction congregated within this party: industrial magnates, great agrarians of the East, capitalists of every color banded together to obstruct the road of revolution with a strong-box, and raise a wall of money against the barricade."
The "Nationalists" had made the mistake of permitting reactionary influences which hid behind them to be seen too clearly. This was bound to render them unpopular. It was therefore not surprising that their representation in the Reichstag should have been the smallest. The Prusso-Teutonics had nothing to gain any longer by encumbering themselves with such a troublesome, weak front. It constituted a handicap to them from the moment they were able to replace it by the younger, more vigorous front offered by Hitler.
The exchange was wholly to their advantage. It is not astonishing that they should have accepted it as soon as they believed Hitler's promises that he would faithfully serve them. These promises had been given directly, as well as through the medium of von Papen, during the weeks preceding January 30, 1933. When in 1934 doubts arose among the Prusso-Teutonics as to Hitler's sincerity, he felt it necessary to reaffirm his unlimited devotion by the radical act of the blood purge of June 30, 1934. "He goes to the length of sacrificing his most faithful lieutenants for us," said the Prusso-Teutonics, and they voiced no further doubts concerning his fidelity.
A Well-Constructed Hierarchy
One may wonder why Hitler, who betrayed so many in the course of his career, including his most intimate friends, should never have attempted to betray the Prusso-Teutonics. It is the only bargain Hitler seems to have kept. The reason is simple: he believes them very strong and more powerful than any other group in Germany, and therefore prefers to travel in their wake. It is certainly not moral considerations which prevent betrayal on his part.
Hitler saw, during his long years of struggle to gain control of the ruling office of Germany, that it was always the men momentarily in the confidence of the Prusso-Teutonics who held this post. For years and years he had concentrated, therefore, on becoming that henchman serving the same forces and eliminating all rivals. After concentrating so long on this single aim he was not going to risk, by any false move, alienating the masters in whose power he believed.
If he had wished to revolt against these forces, the natural thought would have been for him to lean on his own party as all the support that was needed. This in short was the solution proposed by Gregor Strasser and Roehm. But Hitler, a cynic, had reached the conclusion that "popular" forces—groups which appeared in the public eye and whose membership was open to the great masses of the people-were much less powerful than occult, closed forces, whose success was guaranteed by their firm internal organization. The Prusso-Teutonics had all the earmarks of a group organized in occult, or at least closed, fashion. In comparison with these forces the Nazi party must be considered an open, "popular" organization. (The fact that the Nazi party had been built up by demagogic means does not detract at all from its open, popular character.) The Nazi party has weight due to its numbers; the Prusso-Teutonic group, to the nature of its conspiracy. (See page 30 for the role played, according to the Nazi writer, Hans Krieg, by a "Conspirational Conmninity" in the achievement of alms bequeathed by the Teutonic Knights) Hitler realized that he could make the mass membership of the Nazi party serve him and he intended in turn to put himself at the service of the Prusso-Teutonic conspiracy. In this there was an hierarchical gradation from which Hitler, contrary to Gregor Strasser and Roehm, has never wished to break away.
Since January 30, 1933, Hitler has devoted himself—with the aid of the Prussian forces—to the achievement of the old plans of the Teutonic Knights, of the great Elector, of Frederick the Great, and of Bismarck.
In international matters, all Hitler's acts and decisions are what one would expect from any agent of the old PrussoTeutonic scheme. But to a world unprepared for them they are the startling manifestation of a newly risen universal danger.
He spent a few short months exclusively on internal Gleichschaltung, eliminating every trace of the Weimar Republic and suppressing any possibility of disturbance from that source. The "authoritarian regime" which has always been a Prussian dream was fully achieved within a very short time.
Then, in the month of October, 1933, Germany withdrew from the disarmament conference of the League of Nations. The whole Prusso-Teutonic class was jubilant and the "heavy industry" wing in their midst feverishly, prepared for heavy armament production. A few months of internal unrest followed which suggested the possibility of a split between Nazis and Prusso-Teutonics. But Hitler put an end to all that on June 30, 1934, and everything was straightened out.
The Ancient Conquering March
Rid of all disturbing elements, Hitler and the PrussoTeutonics could thenceforth devote themselves completely to the achievement of their common plan. The stages of this task followed one another in rapid succession. In March, 1935, conscription was again introduced into the German Army and Navy. This occurred in spite of prohibitions of the Versailles Treaty. In March, 1936, Germany occupied the left bank of the Rhine. Occupation of Austria followed in March, 1938; the "peaceful" occupation of the Sudetenland in September, 19 3 8, secured under armed threat; the rest of Czecho-Slovakia occupied in March, 1939; annexation of Memel in the same month through pressure on Lithuania; and finally in September, 1939, occupation of Poland. The ancient conquering march of the Prusso-Teutonics was on again, directed along lines of least resistance; it was only the last of the above movements of expansion that excited world resistance and thereby the present war. The task of secret rearmament, begun by the PrussoTeutonics immediately after the German defeat of 1918 and completed with the help of the Felime's activities, had produced its results.
"God has erected our Empire before the Kings of the Earth," wrote Emperor Frederick II, who launched the Prusso-Teutonic forces on the path of conquest. From Frederick Barbarossa, who dreamed of himself as dominus mundi, to Hitler, who dreams of similar things, is but a step.
The guiding diplomatic principles are identical with those of the old Teutonic Order. In the expansion of territory, no friendship or treaty is an obstacle and any excuse is valid. The precepts of Prusso-Teutonic theoreticians are followed, such as the teachings of von Buelow, who held that: ". . . it is first necessary to attack one's neighbor, before coming to more distant States. If this rule is not observed, countries separating the two main adversaries may declare themselves either with or against the great empire. Should they declare themselves against this power everything is changed, since a coalition of little States is equivalent to one big State."
The "New Order" Is an Old Order
More recent occupations of countries by Germany (Norway, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, France, Yugoslavia, etc.) at first glance may appear as simple strategic occupation. If one examines them more closely one can perceive, however, that the Prusso-Teutonic powers took advantage of each invasion of foreign territory, from the first day of occupation, to prepare in the most thoroughgoing scientific manner for the permanent subjugation of the occupied country. This was accomplished first of all on the economic level, where the Prusso-Teutonics' interests primarily are. They are well aware that economic control leads automatically to political control. German economic agencies follow closely on the heels of armies of occupation and endeavor to transform the temporary hold on conquered countries into a permanent economic control.
Until the present this operation has succeeded much more completely in a country like France, where local authorities have accepted the idea of "collaboration" than in countries occupied against the resistance of their governments. In France capture of control of corporations through forced sale to Germans took place with a show of legality because French authorities and courts, under pressure from Vichy, countenanced these transactions. The Prusso-Teutonics know that military occupation of France cannot last forever. Be-sides, they have probably considered the possibility of a German defeat which would bring about the fall of the Nazi regime They must have said to themselves that even in that case conquest of France would have yielded them the key advantages they had hoped to gain: they figured that it would be extremely difficult for the French to find the legal forms to get rid of German control over nearly the whole of their national economy. This control having thus been established within legal framework, according to French law, the task of destroying it would be arduous and complicated. This would be true even for a government under no obligation to respect the agreements of Vichy. It would of course be more true for any French government recognizing Vichy laws and decrees.
All of this entered into the preparation for what Hitler calls the "New Economic Order." This "New Order" is in its entirety the old Prussian scheme of List, which ninety years before Hitler's reign provided the blueprint for the creation of European economic unity under domination of a Prussian Germany. It also provided for subsequent expansion of this Prusso-Teutonic Europe through invasion of the markets of other continents, and establishment of "protectorates" throughout the world. This scheme had always been close to the hearts of the Prusso-Teutonic powers of Germany and had been placed by Dr. Schacht and Dr. Funk in the foreground of the alms pursued by Hitler. Territorial conquest has a meaning subordinate to economic conquest, according to List's formula.
An army of German accountants and auditors was installed in Paris, following the army of soldiers, to draw up "inventories" of all important French enterprises. After these inventories were drawn up German officials and delegates of private German industry called upon the various enterprises to secure for themselves absolute and quite legal control of these firms by the aid of political pressures of every sort and especially by means of the aid lent by "collaborators" within the French government.
All this is in no sense a product of Hitler's invention or of Nazism. Neither is it the result of private initiative of a "racketeering" sort, springing up perhaps because of the complacency of certain German military authorities. (This is not to say that there is no wholesale racketeering going on in addition to the above transactions.) It is a matter, on the contrary, of initiative completely consistent with the official German scheme, which is the Prusso-Teutonic scheme stemming from List and other theorists of the same school of thought—and has nothing to do with Nazism.
The Anti-Christian Current
Aside from his conquest and these efforts to establish a "New Economic Order" under Gennan domination, Hitler's "innovations" are primarily in the religious domain. In order not to lose the sympathies of that section of German population which is deeply devoted to the Catholic or Protestant Churches, he approached this subject with many precautions during the early period of his rule. For some time, however, this aspect of his regime has come to the foreground in Germany and the world press has long dealt with the evident efforts of Hitler to substitute a purely Germanic faith for all forms of religion having foreign connections. It is openly said in Germany today that Mein Kampf should replace the Bible and it is hinted that Hitler will some day replace Christ.
Certain observers called attention to the fact that Hitler had definitely created something new at least in the field of religion. All "religious innovations" now taking place in Germany are generally attributed to Nazism. But if we reread what Professor N. A. Cramb said in 1913 about German aims in the domain of religion (see pages 107-110) we must admit that in this sphere as well Hitler's "innovations" correspond point by point with the ancient Prusso-Teutonic scheme. Creation of a new world religion, purely Teutonic in character, appears in this light to be as important a goal in the whole scheme as the aims of political and economic conquest:
"It is reserved for us to resume in thought that creative role in religion which the whole Teutonic race abandoned fourteen centuries ago," young Germans told Cramb in 1913 Judoea and Galilee struck Germany in the splendor and heroism of her prime. Germany and the whole Teutonic people in the fifth century made the great error. They conquered Rome, but, dazzled by Rome's authority, they adopted the religion and the culture of the vanquished." And Cramb adds: "Thus while proposing to found a world-empire, Germany is also proposing to create a world-religion."
Seen in this light the violent anti-Semitic campaigns of Hitler are blows against the combined Judeo-Christian religions: these first blows are directed at the weakest branches of a single tree. The basic idea came from the Prusso-Teutonics and even Hitler's methods of employing it are of old Prussian inspiration: to attack first the weakest of one's adversaries and then only to extend the attack to the others, one at a time. This tactic makes possible clever propaganda which spreads the belief that only the minority group is the enemy, in this case the Jews.
This anti-Christian current is a very ancient Teutonic trend. It is true that the Holy Roman Empire was, in its origins, profoundly Occidental and Christian; but the struggles waged against the Papacy by the Emperors who succeeded one another brought out atavistic, essentially antiChristian elements in these men as a reaction. Thus there had been, as we have seen, two men in Emperor Frederick II. In his youth he pursued an imperial vision of Occidental idealism. Later he became a bard man, the "hammer" of his century, a new Attila whose moral concepts were no longer Christian but quite close to those of the barbarians.
It was precisely this Frederick ll—"second edition" (who was not so different from his grandfather, Barbarossa) who had intrusted an imperial mission to the Teutonic Knights. By acting thus he had automatically transmitted to them his basically anti-Christian principles, or at least a-Christian and amoral (according to our concept of the word "moral"). The Teutonic Order has pursued through the centuries this tradition and has, so to speak, crystallized it by giving it permanent form and even accentuating its anti-Christian direction. It is therefore not astonishing that the Teutonic Order should have been so frequently in conflict with the Papacy. The Prussia created by the Teutonic Knights and the Prussian spirit which evolved finally handed down to the present the anti-Christian tendencies observed by Cramb in 1913.
When Alfred Rosenberg travels around Germany setting up his "Ordensburgen"—in which young Germans are indoctrinated with the principles of the new Teutonic religion -he is definitely inspired by the old tradition of the Teutonic Order. He is, moreover, right in calling these institutions "Ordensburgen," because each ancient "Burg" of the "Order" in the past centuries filled the same role as the recent institutions of the same name: The ancient Ordensburgen were outposts of Teutonic thought and expansion in Slavic countries.
The Teutonic Order and its offshoot, the intermingled Prusso-Teutonic forces, have kept alive the Teutonic spirit of revenge against the Christian influence. The tradition of the Fehme has evolved on parallel tracks and was inspired by the same spirit. The spirit of the great mass of the peaceable and profoundly Christian German population has through the ages provided a striking contrast. Observers during all this time have taken account of only this latter aspect of affairs and have not attached sufficient importance to the Teutonic forces which were awaiting their hour.
The belief in a Teutonic Messiah was always alive in these circles: Barbarossa was asleep in his mountain * and would come forth some day to lead his people toward new destinies.[ * See pages 337-341]
Hitler expects to be this Teutonic Messiah. In this respect also he intends to take advantage of ideas which were set in motion long before his time. He knows how to "steal the show" in every field. He expects from his faithful that they take him with a respectful seriousness, as becomes a Barbarossa redivivus. The salute "Heil Hitler" was introduced precisely in order to superimpose Hitler on the image of Christ.
The expression Third Reich was created to recall Barbarossa. The second Reich had been, in the interpretation of Hitler's faithful, that of Bismarck (although the latter had never so described it), and the first, that of Barbarossa. The figure three leads back to the figure one, as the Holy Trinity symbolizes the one God. Hitler, or rather Hess and Rosenberg -his experts in "mystic matters"-, were clever at choosing their symbols to catch the public imagination.
Destruction of the Family
The Prusso-Teutonics succeeded in liberating themselves completely from the background common to Western civilization: the Greco-Christian moral philosophy. The fight against the Christian spirit is thus an organic part of Prusso-Teutonism; Bismarck's famous "Kulturkampf," directed against the Catholic Church, and Hitler's open battle against all Judeo-Christian religions can be considered logical—simply as a part of this fight.
We must put into the same class the methodical attempts made in Germany to break up the traditional concept of the family as well as the efforts to introduce into the relations between young people of the two sexes a lack of restraint directly opposed to Western ideas. The encouragement of sexual relations between girls and boys of neighboring youth camps and the propaganda advanced in schools to accustom the girls to the idea of having illegitimate children "for the State" or "for Hitler" are not accidental occurrences. They are part of a systematic plan to break up all the social forms and customs on which Greco-Christian society was built.
This program has been extended even to the territories occupied by Germany. Recent reports from Poland and from Alsace-Lorraine seem to confirm that the "New Order" which the Prusso-Teutonics visualize in Europe would mean, in this sphere also, regression to long outdated concepts.
The family idea is very ancient and goes back to pre-Christian times. It was adopted, however, as an organic part of the Greco-Christian moral concept. It evolved out of an elementary philosophy of life in which was latent the idea of the "primacy of the human person." The Individual, instead of being submerged in the Tribe or in the State, forms his own little universe, the Family-and all further development of Society starts at that point. The undermining of the ideas * on which the family has been built up means something further: the suppression of a unit in which the individual was able to find shelter from the uniformity and the exactions of the Tribe or the State. German policy in the matter of the sexual education of youth thus appears as an organic part of the plan to submerge the individual within the State—the PrussoTeutonic State, of course, even if the individual is Alsatian or Polish.
No girl should be selfish enough to save herself for her future husband or to be dominated by thoughts of the family she may wish to raise. Such thoughts are no longer a virtue. They are a crime against the State: children should be begotten only for the State. "There is but one virtue-to forget oneself as an individual," said Fichte and von Bernhardi long ago. The individual's thought of procreating should be governed only by the needs of the State. And if these children are born out of wedlock, so much the better: without family attachments they will be much more willing to submit themselves to the State.
The Five Prussian Characteristics
We may now recapitulate the various traits which are inherent in "Prussianism." We can find five such traits, or characteristics. First, there is the threefold mark mentioned in
* i.e., those opposed to promiscuous sexual relations, those referring to the first allegiance of children to the head of the family, etc.
Chapter 11 as particularly characteristic of the Teutonic Order. Let us review the meaning of each of these traits:
(1) The Teutonic harshness of the Knights. This appeared on many occasions as the barbaric element in Prussianism. This is the trait which goes back directly to pre-Christian days. It explains the many cruelties apparent in the Third Reich which so often shocked the Western World.
(2) The egotism of caste and the arrogance of the Teutonic Knights. The Knights were of noble descent. The Order itself was described symbolically as a "Hospital" of the German nobles, a sort of charitable self-help institution with the purpose of procuring due and undue privileges for the caste members. We are facing here the feudal element in Prussianism; in its name were committed the numerous abuses for which the Junkers so often were criticized. This created and encouraged in Prusso-Teutonic Germany an atmosphere of corruption strangely fused with the so-called "higher goals." This element is also responsible for the famous arrogance of the German Junkers and officers which has frequently aroused world-wide resentment.
(3) The fanaticism and the "disciplinarian" mentality derived from the monastic origin of Prussianism. The Teutonic Knights acted in the most un-Christian manner and were often in open struggle with the Church. Nevertheless a severe monastic rule reigned supreme within the Order in contradiction to the frequently un-Christian outward conduct of the Teutonic brethren. It is true that in this rule the accent was on discipline and not on Christian spirit. This rule was inspired by the statutes of the two other Knights' orders in the Holy Land, especially by those of the Templar Order. The strictness of these statutes was a guarantee of survival for these Orders. The leaders of the Teutonic Knights wanted to insure survival of their Order by using the same means. In spite of their frequent opposition to the teachings of the Church they could employ monastic rule because this was not necessarily Christian. The traditions of the Sicilian-Norman State in which Emperor Frederick II had been raised also influenced these statutes toward the same disciplinarian spirit. From this source the Order inherited especially its conception of a State led by officials governed by the same rigid discipline. Out of this monastic fanaticism and disciplinarian mentality evolved the famous "Prussian discipline" of the German army and officialdom; and also the intolerance characteristic of most institutions in present-day Germany. This is the trait in Prusso-Teutonic Germany which is at the antipodes of any "sense of humor." But this monastic fanaticism in the Knights' times also meant absolute devotion to the cause of the Order and utter disregard of the "primacy of the human person'' This primacy was a Christian principle but its application was necessarily lost in the rigid monastic structure of the Teutonic Order: the Order's interests took precedence over those of Christianity and mankind. In the course of centuries the Teutonic Order developed into the Prussian State. The absolute devotion which originally had been accorded to the Order now was directed toward the State. This devotion in modern times took shape as the German totalitarian idea applied by the Prusso-Teutonics in connection with the Prussian-controlled German State.
Besides this threefold mark, the Teutonic Order had two further characteristics. These were the ones directly inherited from the Hohenstaufen Emperors: (a) ambition aiming at world domination; (b) fight (undercover or open) against the Christian spirit. These two aims were closely connected. As we have seen, the Hohenstaufens concerned themselves only with the unlimited extension of their own power in the direction of world domination-toward which the Church took (and had to take by its very nature) a strongly critical attitude.
The Teutonic Order inherited from the Hohenstaufens both these ambitions and the spirit of resistance against the supremacy of the Church and Christian teachings in general. In the isolated hot-house of Eastern Prussia these two "Leitmotivs" grew to gigantesque proportions through the centuries.
These five characteristics were perpetuated by the inner circle of the Order and later by the Junker organizations. They still pervade present-day Prussianism. They have even obtruded themselves into the foreground to such an extent that their sudden appearance in the limelight has surprised the world. It has not been fully realized that this is no spontaneous creation of Nazism, but that these characteristics have for centuries been inherent in Prussianism.
It is due to the five traits or tendencies we have described (two of which were inherited from the Hohenstaufen Emperors, three developed within the Teutonic Order) that Prusso-Teutonic Germany (Hitlerian Germany today) seems to be so utterly different from the rest of the world. And it is also because of the same characteristics that it is so different from that other Germany: the Germany of Greco-Christian culture-which used to be the Germany before Prussian domination was established over all German nations; and which may still exist, to a limited extent, in a part of the country—or at least in certain German homes.
The All-Important Fight Against the Christian Spirit
Of the five characteristics of Prusso-Teutonic Germany, the two inherited from the Hohenstaufen Emperors described under (a) and (b) are the most significant and the most important. These—"ambition aiming toward world domination" and "fight against the Christian spirit"—appear as the basic driving forces. It is quite natural that this should be so, since the Teutonic Order accepted these two aims when it embarked on the Borussian adventure and consciously carried them for-ward through the centuries.
The "fight against the Christian spirit" seems to be the more all-embracing of these two aims. It is even a kind of prerequisite to the other aim-unlimited imperialism-because the Christian spirit is necessarily opposed to domination of the world by a single group or State. Also, it was possible for the other three characteristics of Prusso-Teutonic Germany which we have described to develop into what they are today only because of the basic anti-Christian tendency of the Order, and in later times of the Prusso-Teutonics.
The Teutonic harshness and egotism of caste, lacking all limitations set by Christian morality, made possible the cruelties and abuses for which the Teutonic Knights were infamous in Prussia, the peculiar practices of the Felime in the Middle Ages and particularly in its revived, more cruel form after World War I, and the present inhuman mass-killings of the civilian population in the Ukraine, Yugoslavia, etc.
The unlimited devotion to the State without the humanizing influence of Christian morality is at the origin of such statements of principles as those contained in the writings of the Prusso-Teutonic theoreticians (see Chapter 1) *—statements which Western people with their Greco-Christian background feel are basically opposed to their way of thinking. This also explains the constant lying and broken promises of the Teutonic Order where advantages for the Order's State were at stake; and also the same attitude in more recent Prussian history-particularly in the case of Bismarck, whose Machiavellism and cynicism are surpassed only by Hitler's. This peculiar type of devotion to the interests of the State finds justification for the most evil actions, provided they benefit the State.[ * For example: "Right belongs to those who are victorious in war"; "The right of conquest is universally recognized"; "Strength is the highest law"; "Without war we would find degenerate races"; "War is a sound panacea for the people"; "Everything has its price"; "The State is an end in itself."]
One may ask whether there is an actual secret organization behind the Junkers and the Prusso-Teutonics or whether the familiar Prusso-Teutonic organizations are responsible for the sequence of events presented in this book.
Really secret organizations seldom betray their existence by outward signs. Nevertheless the founding of the secret "Society of Lizards" (Eidechsengesellschaft) is an historical fact. Reliable historians have related how this society tried to pull the strings in Prussia while the Order of the Teutonic Knights still existed. Kotzebue attributes to the activities of this secret society the secularization of Prussia.
The unilinear evolution which has taken place since then—in Prussia and in a Germany dominated by Prussia—and which corresponds point by point to the basic principles of the Society of Lizards might be considered sufficient circumstantial evidence of the survival of a secret Prusso-Teutonic organization right down to our time. But there is more. The entire process of Prussian growth seems to be inspired by an uninterrupted organic plan. The continuity in the achievement of this plan while the Teutonic Order was responsible for the growth can well be understood. No interruption in the logic of events is observable, however, even since the time when the Order ceased to manage the affairs of Prussia. The natural thought, of course, is that the Society of Lizards, which was-while the Order still existed-its rival for influence in Prussia, secretly carried forward the same plans on its own; and that the same Society inspired the Great Elector, Frederick II, Bismarck, Wilhelm II, and the different leaders of Germany since 1918.
Our circumstantial evidence goes further: Germany was defeated in 1918 and the old ambitious plans of the Prussian elements seemed shattered forever; yet within a few months somebody, somewhere, behind the curtains in Germany, made decisions of the highest importance. These decisions meant revival of the old Fehme, the organization of a systematic terror planned to undermine the young German Republic and to facilitate Germany's secret rearmament. So-called "secret societies" sprang up from one day to the other all over Germany-societies which were secretive as regards the details of their decisions and activities, but whose existence itself was a secret from nobody. All these secret societies were closely connected among themselves; and there was no rivalry between them. Their activities complemented each other wonderfully. Even a superficial observer must conclude that all this was possible only if these societies received instructions from the same hidden, absolutely secret sources.
The fact that the Fehme terror sprang up so rapidly, so "spontaneously" after the first World War tends to confirm the view that the decision to institute this terror must have been reached by a very small group operating secretly. It is extremely difficult to imagine that a large, openly organized association like the Reichs-Landbund (the professional organization of the Junker landowners), or a social club like the Herrenklub (to which nobody but the cream of the Prusso-Teutonics was admitted), could overnight have taken such a grave decision as the starting of a new blood tribunal. Matters of this delicate character can be decided only by a few people who are party to the same secret, and bound by the same vows. Unless this condition exists, endless discussions ensue which hinder a quick decision; and the danger Of betrayal exists. It is a fact that no time elapsed before the decisions were taken, and the orders were issued to the different executive agencies. Further, nobody ever betrayed the working of the inner circle of the twentieth-century Felime.
At the end of the nineteenth century, Emperor Wilhelm II, who was nurtured on the traditions of the Prusso-Teutonic Order, actually reestablished this Order in Prussia and Ger many. The descendants of those who, acting in the Society of Lizards, displaced the ancient Order from Prussia—and contributed thus to its disintegration—now claimed for themselves the right to appear cloaked in the dignity of those whose place they had taken. (From their point of view they were perfectly right to do so: although they had displaced the Order, they actually were carrying on the Order's traditions. They acted like a man who secures control of a corporation by the foulest means and then, continuing on the original policies of the enterprise, makes speeches to the glory of his predecessor.) Not much was said about the activities of the revived Order, but its yearly conventions in East Prussia were generally noted by the German newspapers. A few months after the beginning of the present war, a short notice appeared in German papers announcing that Hitler himself had been initiated into the Teutonic Order.
No information is published about the internal organization of the contemporary Prusso-Teutonic Order, nor about its exact connections with what—if it still exists—is the present-day survival of the Society of Lizards.
In a word, we cannot expect to find documentary evidence about the precise functioning of "Secret Germany," but we do not need more than circumstantial evidence for our purposes. In this connection it is interesting to note that in May, 1924, when the 700th anniversary of the University of Naples, a University founded by Emperor Frederick II, was celebrated, a crown was found near the sarcophage of the Emperor in the Cathedral of Palermo with the following inscription:
"Seinein Kaiser und Helden
Das geheime Deutschland"
("To Their Emperor and Hero, from Secret Germany)"* [*From: E. Kantorowicz, Kaiser Friedrich der Zweite, 1928]
This Secret Germany, whatever may be the form in which it functions today, may certainly be grateful to Emperor Frederick II, author of the Bull of Rimini, and thereby spiritual father of the Teutonic Order, who enabled Secret Germany to preserve to our times his mystic, world-spanning ambitions.
It is this Secret Germany, this Germany carrying on a centuries-old conspiracy, about which the Deputy Gareis spoke in 1921 in the Bavarian Landtag, and which caused his murder. It is this same Germany which, as we have seen, brought Hitler to power and has enabled him to appear in the eyes of the world as a great conqueror, or a great criminal—depending on the point of view.
If we assume the existence of a Secret Germany, the open Junker organizations like the Reichs-Landbund and the Herrenklub—which also derive from the Order of the thirteenth century-have only a secondary role, carrying out instructions of the secret group like all the other recently established societies which we have mentioned. But even if we disregard the circumstantial evidence which proves the actual survival of Secret Germany, we must admit that a straight line can be detected between the Teutonic Order of the thirteenth century and the Germany of today. In this latter case we must assume that the Reichs-Landbund and the Herrenklub are the final source of all decisions because they would be the highest in the hierarchy of all existing Prusso-Teutonic organizations. They would thus have the final responsibility for Germany's present-day role.
The facts set forth in this book support the former view.
The Barbarian Revolt
Before the advent of Hitler to power, the German Catholic thinker, Theodore Haecker, clearly recognized that Hitler was the faithful valet of the Prusso-Teutonic forces and that he would act in this capacity when he became head of Germany. Haecker considered the Prussian trend an evil German tradition, a kind of bastard tradition. Here is what Haeckcr wrote in December, 1932 (in Virgil, Father of the West):
"We are aware that we are living in dark times. We still have in us just enough light to be conscious of the darkness enveloping us; to perceive it through the heavy vapors rising from the second and third Reichs (Bismarck and Hitler: or we know that the advent of the Racists will inaugurate a new age of Humanity which they will baptize the third Reich) and which are exhaled by the impure, hollow declarations of our second and third-rate apostles and prophets of empire. At the bottom of these foul Messianic fermentations is no trace of spirituality [Geist] and even less of the Holy Ghost [Heiliger Geist]. Their sole excuse, perhaps, and even more the excuse of those they carry along in their train, is the spiritual and material distress in which we are living.
"The great trickery, the great fraud is this: from the hour that Prussia incarnated the idea of Empire, this idea of Empire changed in dimensions, ceased to be the common affair of the Christian West, and shrank to the compass of an internal affair, of the Germanic tribes of the Forest of Teutoburg . . . plebeian, cardinally vicious and perverted in its deep essence. From the beginning of its history Prussia has been a State, and nothing more than a State. A State stricken with hydrocephaly. She has never had any ethnic character. She has never been a race like Bavaria or Swabia. She has never been a people or a nation. She has never annexed a race, a people, a nation except by means of deceit . . . . * The Prussian State has introduced into the Germanic idea of the Reich elements which cause it to disintegrate internally, short-sighted State centralism, and an anti-Christian, bestial nationalism." [* The italics are mine. P.W.]
The entire background of what we consider the "Hitlerian" regime is here in the words of Haecker published two months before Hitler's accession to the chancellorship. Nazism may have represented many things since its beginning. Since January 30, 19337 it has been nothing more than "Prussianism" and lives only by the grace of Prusso-Teutonic forces which alone count in Germany.
Hitler and his acolytes have taken all the blame for whatever can be said against the Germany of today, while PrussoTeutonic Germany has succeeded in making the world almost forget that it ever existed-and certainly has succeeded in concealing the fact that it is still there, more than ever responsible for everything that is done in Germany's name.
The forces which in 1933 allowed Hitler's accession to power kept him there on condition that he serve their interests, and that he systematically pursue their cherished plans of conquest. They always preferred to work through some such figurehead, because, recognizing the possibility of a setback to their ambitions, they thought it preferable for others, rather than themselves, to be blamed for any failures. Thus, they would be able to reorganize their activities later under new guises.
Domination over all of Germany was the first goal which attracted the Prusso-Teutonics. Once this was accomplished the rest of the world was to be brought under control.
In what Prussianism has become through the ages it represents a "barbarian revolt" against all that is dear to us in Western culture. Whether Hitler is overthrown tomorrow or not, Prussianism will still be here in all its threatening reality, a real focus of evil which to this day has always escaped the surgeon's scalpel.
Unless, this time, we have the courage to cut out from its depth all of the putrid flesh. . . .