the afternoon of Tuesday, 10 September 1935, at precisely twenty minutes past four, the Fuehrer’s aircraft touched down at Nuremberg airport. The city, renowned as the birthplace of the 15th
century German meistersinger and poet Hans Sachs, is decked with green garlands and banners - even rugs have been hung festively from many windows. Tens of thousands form a guard of honour
stretching for miles. Waving little flags, they throw bunches of flowers and cry "Heil Hitler!" as the sedan carrying the anxiously awaited "resurrecter" of the New Germany passes through the
They had gathered from far and wide to experience the heady atmosphere, seek new strength and express their admiration and reverence for the "Saviour of Germany". More than half a million mainly uniformed visitors had already arrived, many on the four hundred and sixty-five trains that have been especially arranged. Everyone is desperate to experience at least one of the seven festival days marking this "party convention of liberty".
Later, as the "nation’s father and protector" enters the town hall, the bells of the old imperial city began to toll - an event normally reserved for ecclesiastical occasions. Solemnly booming over the rooftops and across the streets and houses, the bells continued to ring for half an hour to herald the opening of the seven-day party convention of the National Socialist Party. In welcome, the prominent heads of the city, state and party had been given the chance to shake hands with their commander in chief.
A quarter of a million uniformed paraders are accommodated in makeshift camps set up on the outskirts of the city. The rest, including visitors, stay in hotels, pensions, schools or private lodgings. A great deal of provisional accommodations has been created, with the Nuremberg tenants making their bedrooms or sitting rooms available. The widow FriedassMueller has rented her bedroom, sitting room and nursery to four guests, setting up provisional accommodation for herself and her ten-year-old son in the kitchen.
On Monday, the sixth day of the party festivities, Frau Mueller is again the first to arise. She tidies up and prepares breakfast for her guests who are in the habit of taking their morning meal at eight o’clock sharp.
Frau Mueller: If my guests knew that I was Jewish they'd be out of my apartment in no time. They'd rather sleep in the station waiting room. After all, us Jews are blamed for the greatest evils of the world. It’s easy to complain about someone who cannot defend themselves without risking their lives.
We are held responsible for the emergence and spread of communism, the German defeat in the last war and, naturally, the mismanagement of the Weimar Republic under the "Jewish democracy". Whatever is bad, reprehensible and dirty can only have been "instigated" by the Jews, while the full-blooded German can only be decent, faithful and good. We Jews, as a "germ", are gradually being frozen out of the "national body" until one day the Nazis will deprive us of the right to be Germans, in fact to be humans.
On the first day of the convention, the Reich minister of education issued a decree whereby all children of Jewish descent, i.e. those with at least one Jewish parent, are to be taught in Jewish schools as of next Easter. These schools will be especially created to guarantee the homogeneity of the class community and the "undisturbed" implementation of the National Socialist youth education in general state schools.
I’m so scared for my Klaus. After all, he has no idea he’s half Jewish and he must also go to a Jewish school next Easter. He has been so looking forward to his tenth birthday when, as a "Pimpf" of the "Jungvolk" (German Young People), he would at last be allowed to wear the National Socialist youth dress of honour. His whole room is covered with pictures of the Fuehrer and the Hitler Youth. Every day I have to iron what he calls his "uniform" - his shirt, trousers and brown jacket. Yes, it’ll be awful when he hears that he won’t be allowed to be part of all the things he so loves and reveres. Perhaps I should have spoken to him about this before. - I was just hoping that the anti-Jewish measures wouldn’t get any worse.
I’ll have to wake him up now. It’ll be eight in half an hour. Wake up! Klaus! Ever since he has become a "Pimpf", I am no longer allowed to call him "Kläuschen" (little Klaus). As he told me himself, he is now a "fighter for Adolf Hitler". Wake up!
Klaus: Yes, Mummy. Do you know what I was dreaming?
Frau Mueller: What was it then?
Klaus: The Fuehrer personally pinned an Iron Cross onto my chest and congratulated me with a handshake.
Frau Mueller: Sadly, dreams and reality are often very different things. Hurry up and wash quickly. Your breakfast will be ready in a minute!
Klaus: Yes, Mother. Yes, I’ll have to hurry up. Today our comrades from Breslau are leaving. I was appointed to be one of their escorts through the city and soon I’ll have to meet them at the station. Too bad I already live in Nuremberg, otherwise I would have been allowed to march here like so many other Hitler boys. One group from East Prussia marched for fifty days. The Fuehrer shook hands with them afterwards. Oh yes, that would have also been my dream come true.
Saturday was the day of the Hitler Youth. I was also allowed to stand amongst the fifty thousand boys who had lined up before the Fuehrer in the stadium. Yes, I still remember the words of the appeal he addressed to his German youth: "The German boy of the future" must be "lithe and lissom, quick as a greyhound, tough as leather and hard as Krupp steel". "Each and every one is under the obligation to serve his people, each and every one is under the obligation to prepare for this service, to harden himself physically for it, and to mentally, spiritually and intellectually get ready and strengthen himself for it!". We are "the future of the nation and the future of the German Reich".
I've cut out his speech from the newspaper and I'm going to hang it above my bed. A party member from Cologne is sleeping in my room at the moment. The leader of a Frauenschaft and her daughter, a leader of the League of German Girls, are staying in Mummy’s bedroom. Of all the guests, I like talking to the commander of the Nazi local branch most of all. Herr Frommann has been a party member for twelve years now. He's been telling me so much about his experiences in northern France during the Great War. I can’t hear enough about the great heroic fight.
Yes, those damned Jews stabbed Germany in the back at that time. Who exactly are these nasty Jews who betrayed Germany? I’ve never seen a Jew before. Oh yes, Saturday was the greatest day of my life. We were all allowed to look the Fuehrer in the eye. We sang the songs "Under the flag we are striding, under the flag we are fighting" and "One will unites us, one faith is making us strong". And one of us spoke over the loudspeakers:
bist im grossen Werke
Des Volkes nur ein Stein.
Dient's nicht des Volkes Stärke,
Ist ohne Sinn dein Sein.
You are but a little stone
in the people’s grand work.
Your life is without meaning
if it doesn’t contribute to the people’s power.
And all together we replied in chorus as we had rehearsed for a long time beforehand:
einst für dich gestorben sein,
Für dich vor'm Feind verdorben sein,
Wir Jungen gehn voran.
If die we must for you some day
We boys shall lead the way.
And then we swore by the swastika of our beloved Fuehrer:
du wehst, dassgehen wir,
Wo du stehst, bestehen wir,
Und du wirst nicht fallen,
Eh nicht von uns allen
Auch der Letzte fiel.
Where you fly that’s where we go
Where you stand, we hold our own
You shall never fall
Till the last of us all
Has also fallen too.
I’ll be glad to sacrifice my blood for Germany and the Fuehrer. And should we be attacked by wicked enemies one day, I want to fight in the front line and be just as valiant and brave as the
great combatant and warrior Adolf Hitler was in the world war.
Frau Mueller: Klaus! The guests will be here any minute now. Don’t forget you have to buy them fresh rolls and later the newspaper as well.
Klaus: But I have to go to the station in a moment to see off our comrades.
Frau Mueller: Well, I suppose a quarter of an hour earlier or later won’t make any difference.
Klaus: Do you think Herr Frommann will take me with him this afternoon to see the presentations of our new Wehrmacht? I really must see it, Mummy. There are supposed to be demonstrations of brand-new tanks and guns and mock fights as well.
Frau Mueller: Well, why don’t you ask your new "uncle" later on? Now go and get twelve fresh rolls. Here’s the money.
Ten minutes later, the four solemn-spirited guests are sitting at the breakfast table. They spread butter and jam on their still warm rolls and slice the tops of their soft-boiled eggs while Frau
Mueller pours the coffee.
Herr Frommann: Look at this, things are looking up all round. Real filtered coffee, butter and excellent jam, Germans can again afford everything these days.
Frau Giesebrecht: All of this we owe to the Fuehrer. Without him the German nation would still be on the breadline.
Frau Broeckelberger: Exactly! The National Socialists have accomplished some remarkable feats since they took power. I can think of few other countries that are as dependant on imported raw materials as we are. Unlike England or France, we have no colonies left. Our enemies have bled us dry for fifteen years, making us pay more than fifty billion deutschmarks in reparations and leading our economy to the brink of ruin. It's an incredible feat that after just two and a half years, the Third Reich has made us better off financially than some of the richest countries in the world. And all of this we owe to our Fuehrer and to the Fuehrer alone.
Herr Frommann: Yes, it does seem like a miracle that the Fuehrer was able to bring down the unemployment figures from over six and a half million to less than two million in such a short time.
Frau Giesebrecht: Over the next few months, we'll be creating full employment for the remaining 1.7 million unemployed as well. A new force and enthusiasm is stirring everywhere. We’re building more new roads and autobahns every day.
Heidrun: Yes, this has already made us the envy of other countries. A Spanish newspaper wrote that the Reich autobahns are the "pyramids of National Socialism".
Frau Broeckelberger: Yes, we will soon be building even greater pyramids. Last Wednesday the Fuehrer laid the foundation stone of the world’s largest convention hall. It will become the first in a series of monumental buildings to be created by the Third Reich. For centuries to come, the crème de la crème of the National Socialist thousand-year Reich will gather beneath its roof each year.
Frau Giesebrecht: Yes, as long as we remain united and strong as a people we can achieve what seems otherwise impossible. The Fuehrer is astounding the whole world with his achievements.
Frau Broeckelberger: Only three years ago who would have thought it possible that class differences would no longer exist? That the entire people would be amalgamated into a unified whole, in which "their will makes itself felt in a single will"? Those few remaining dimwits will either be persuaded or, as the Fuehrer put it so aptly in his proclamation, "when it can’t be done on friendly terms, they will be forced to conform with the national interest with "brutal ruthlessness” in concentration camps”.
Yes, Adolf Hitler is Germany, and Germany is Adolf Hitler. He is the greatest statesman in German history. After just two and a half years, he is already far greater than Bismarck. He will not only bring all Germans outside the country back home into the Reich, but he is also unifying us internally. By unifying us into a single will and a cohesive and united People, we will have a strength that will allow us to accomplish great deeds in the world.
Herr Frommann: Yes, he cleared the debts that the allied powers imposed upon us in Versailles. By returning our nation’s full military sovereignty in March of this year, he redeemed us from our last remaining humiliation and set Germany free from all shackles and restrictions. With this seventh Reichsparteitag, we are celebrating the reclamation of our full national liberty. Who would have dared to even consider something like this three years ago?
Heidrun: Our Minister of Propagandassbelieves our Fuehrer’s greatest merit lies in having put a stop to the "onslaught of world Bolshevism" in both Germany and the rest of Western civilisation. By doing so, he has probably saved Western culture from the "abyss of complete destruction”.
Frau Giesebrecht: Yes, I also consider this to be his most amazing accomplishment to date. Communism has been totally defeated in Germany. And we will be able to handle the couple of thousand Jews and dissenters as well.
Herr Frommann: Frau Mueller! Where is Klaus? Has he already gone to meet his companions?
Frau Mueller: He’s just quickly rushed off to get the newspaper for you. I feel like a maybug in the beehive among these nazis. If they find out that I don’t belong to them, they will sting me and kick me out. Of course I would be happy to leave! But where on earth can I go and with what means? I have neither relatives abroad nor the money to buy a visa. I’m scared. It’s getting worse and worse.
Heidrun: Well, mister party member, what has impressed you most so far?
Herr Frommann: Well, everything really. One highlight followed hot on the heels of the next. But the most marvellous thing for me were the two parades, of course. Thursday evening, I was allowed to take part in a torchlight procession through the streets of Nuremberg. I was one of a hundred thousand political leaders who thanked and expressed their reverence to the Fuehrer. The next day we all lined up in the Zeppelin park to listen to the Fuehrer’s address. We stood there beneath the twenty thousand flags we had brought along. I shall never forget this as long as I live.
Frau Giesebrecht: Yes, we were sitting here by the wireless listening to his address. But I think the atmosphere must have been even more powerful on the Luitpoldfeld yesterday. Almost one hundred and twenty thousand men of the SA, SS, NSKK and airforce lined up before the Fuehrer to salute the dead with their commander in chief. I would have liked to be there. But there was only room for a few thousand spectators.
Heidrun: I did stand at Adolf Hitler Square yesterday afternoon when those one hundred and twenty thousand men were marching in long columns past our Fuehrer to give him the German salute and look him in the eye. The Fuehrer saluted his followers for five solid hours.
Frau Giesebrecht: Was he really able to hold up his arm all the time?
Heidrun: He could rest his arm after each column for one to two minutes. Then a new column would come by. Then, straight as an arrow, he would stretch out his arm again for another eight to ten minutes. Yes, the Fuehrer is provided with willpower verging on the divine.
Klaus, having returned with the newspaper, stopped eavesdropping behind the half-opened kitchen door: We Pimpfs have often held contests among us to see who can hold his arm stretched out the longest. No-one managed to do it over six minutes. The Fuehrer is first in everything.
Frau Broeckelberger: Yes, God sent us the Fuehrer. We will do well to obey his orders in everything.
Herr Frommann: Sadly, I missed the Fuehrer’s evening address on the wireless which he gave in the Luitpold Hall the day before yesterday. Tell me about it, will you?
Frau Broeckelberger: Twenty thousand members of the NS Frauenschaft were gathered. The Fuehrer showed us that "equal rights for women" as propagated by the Jew-indoctrinated democrats and communists, are really depriving women of their rights. For we are, he said, controlled by feelings whereas men are controlled by their intellect. This alone gives rise to two completely different spheres of responsibility where each sex has its own full equal rights. He said it was the task of men to wage war rather than women. The man has to take responsibility for the nation, the woman for the family. A woman, he said, could earn no greater title than being the mother of sons and daughters. Through compulsory military service, the Fuehrer will again make all German men decent, clean, honour-loving and valiant so that we women may be proud of them again. Yes, it was an impressive speech. Many of us were moved to tears.
Frau Giesebrecht: And you, Frau Mueller, what has impressed you most so far?
Frau Mueller: What on earth shall I say? I’m afraid I always have so much to do that I can only follow the great speeches on the wireless. Perhaps the fireworks display at the big funfair on Saturday was the most impressive thing for me.
Frau Broeckelberger: Haven’t you met the Fuehrer face to face yet, then? That’s always the most exalting moment of each convention!
Frau Mueller: Oh well, you know, it’s the same with me as with the Parisians. All the visitors to the City of Light go up the Eiffel Tower first thing, whereas the Parisians have never been there themselves.
Heidrun: Each of us women from the BDM would sell her last piece of jewellery for the chance of being allowed to see the Fuehrer on the Reichsparteitag. I don’t understand how you can show so little interest in looking the Fuehrer in the eye.
Frau Mueller: But he returns every year. Sometime it’ll work out. But I set no store by it at all. He can go jump in a lake as far as I’m concerned. I have the strange feeling that he'll give us Jews a really hard time one of these days.
Herr Frommann: Why, here comes my Klaus! Good morning!
Klaus: Good morning, uncle Frommann! Good morning everybody! I’m bringing you the "Voelkischer Beobachter"!
Herr Frommann: Thank you, my boy!
Klaus: Uncle Frommann! Will you be going to see the presentations of the Wehrmacht this afternoon?
Herr Frommann: Naturally! You’d like to come along, wouldn’t you!
Klaus: Yes! Will you take me with you?
Herr Frommann: Of course! I wished I had such a splendid boy. But we’ll have to leave at twelve o’clock, for it will be very crowded.
Heidrun (opening the newspaper): The Reichstag convened in Nuremberg again for the first time in 400 years. Here they’ve published the laws that they unanimously voted for last night. At long last, the crucial measures that we National Socialists have been long hoping for have been adopted as law. "Marriage between Jews and citizens of German or cognate blood is forbidden."
Frau Broeckelberger: About time! Now our Aryan blood can no longer be contaminated!
Heidrun: "Extramarital intercourse between Jews and citizens of German or cognate blood is forbidden."
Frau Giesebrecht: This will put a stop to all fornication. Decency and propriety will return to the purged community of the German people.
Frau Broeckelberger: I think Hitler’s greatest achievement lies in correctly assessing the risks surrounding the racial survival of our German civilisation. By initiating the appropriate response, he will achieve the purification of our blood and ultimately the complete recovery of the entire national body.
Heidrun: "Jews are prohibited from hoisting the Reich and national flags and from displaying the Reich colours."
Frau Mueller: Oh no! Now I’m no longer allowed to hang a flag outside or put it here on the table. Oh no!
Heidrun: The law comes into force on the day of its proclamation. Nuremberg, September 15, 1935.
Frau Mueller: Does this mean I’ve already committed an offence by not taking down the swastikas last night? If I can no longer hang a "Reich flag" out of the window, then everybody will know I’m Jewish. No guest will ever want to spend the night at my place.
Klaus: Have any of you seen a Jew before?
Frau Broeckelberger: Yes, I have seen quite a few of them. One can recognise them at first glance.
Klaus: How do they look?
Frau Broeckelberger: They are the opposite of you and your mother.
Klaus: But mother, you once told me that they’re people just like us, that they look just like you and me. What am I supposed to believe now?
What later became of Frau Mueller and her son?
Frau Mueller was gassed in Auschwitz. Klaus committed suicide in the Buchenwald concentration camp by walking into the electrified fence.
Couldn’t the Germans of that time see where the Fuehrer’s intolerance towards minorities and his military preparations would lead to?
Hitler never hid his intentions regarding those who refused to comply with the nationalist-German will, i.e. his will. He liked to utter these threats, if only to intimidate the rebellious and bring them finally into line. But whenever he placed this "death card" on the table, he accompanied it with a few trump cards which seem to be the only ones noticed by those marvelling at his hand. In this card game, the seven of spades represents - if you allow me this liberty - the Nuremberg Laws. This card was not played until the sixth day of the party conference after all the trumps in the party’s hand had first been successfully played, thereby obliterating any chance of losing that final card.
Hitler displayed an evil genius when it came to mass propagandassand demagogic influence over the will of the people. Every nation given a man with Hitler’s powers of persuasion and trickery must "fall for his line", as the saying goes.
But when the war ended and people could see with their own eyes the final results that this "master of persuasion" had brought upon the German people, surely the Fuehrer’s evil game must have become evident to everyone at last? For instance, what did Frau Broeckelberger and her daughter think of Hitler once the war had ended?