THE WESTERN MAIL &
SOUTH WALES NEWS, August 22nd 1934
Trump Card - Fear That Germany May Fall to Pieces
“Deutschland Uber Alles!” Germany above Everything!
watched thousands of bareheaded Germans last Sunday singing these words with
passionate religious fervour, and repeating the last lines like the congregation
at a Welsh chapel.
stood at the window of the Chancellery saluting his worshippers who crowded the
street before the Palace.
awe-filled eyes of the children were fixed upon their leader as upon some bright
comet flashing through the sky. I saw their lips move as if they were
chanting, not a national anthem, but a fervent prayer, an exhortation to Heaven
- “Germany above Everything!”
British do not sing, “God Save the King” in that spirit. They sing their
National Anthem with a confidence almost bordering on indifference, because
Britain’s political foundations have endured for centuries, and there is
belief in Britain’s unity which makes the people take their country for
NOT A REAL NATION
Germany is a child among nations. She was unborn when Britain had been
mighty for almost a thousand years. She is a creation of the last century
a hundred years ago “Germany” meant as little emotionally or politically to
the world as the “Atlantic Ocean”, she was a mere geographical expression.
has never been a real nation, but a collection of States loosely knit together and
loathing each other. In fact, Bavarian hated Prussians and Prussians
sniffed when they talked of Saxons. Such a hotch-potch of peoples could
easily fall to pieces and Germany could disappear. That is the present
fear of loyal Germans. Thus when the roar “Deutschland Uber Alles,”
while “God Save the King” on our lips is only mumbled, it is not arrogance,
not boastfulness that urges them, but lack of confidence in their future, the
ever-present fear that the congeries of States and peoples may not hold
above all” means “Germany before Saxony, before Prussia, before Württemberg.”
It is an invocation: “Oh God, give us unity.”
THE BREATH OF LIFE
That idea does not enter into England’s political thought because it already
operates in her national life. The sea cuts Britain off from the world.
Unity means more to the Welsh because the divisions between North and South
Wales. It means something to the Frenchman, because France has been united
only since the French Revolution of 1789.
to the Germans, who have only recently become a nation, unity means the very
breath of life.
was as late as 1871 that Bismarck created the German Empire, but it was Empire
in which there were many Kings and Princes with great power in their own
dominions. Even in 1914 Bavaria and other States had their own stage
stamps, railways, uniforms, and up to 1933 they had their own Parliaments.
today Germany is not united. She is a discordant country in religion for
two-thirds of the popu1ation are Protestant and one-third is Roman Catholic.
is discordant in politics. The Rhineland’s history is shot through with
Roman influences, democratic experiments, and French justice while in Eastern
Germany the acquiescence of the serf has never been exorcised from the soul of
is discordant in race. The Prussians are half Slavs, while the Rhineland
is peopled by a partly Celtic stock.
is discordant in her geography. In the north one travels hundreds of miles
over a flat sandy plain. In the south the magnificent peaks of the Alps
soar above flower-covered valleys where quick-witted musical people, charming
and altogether in love with life and their fellows.
Germany has no natural frontiers except the sea to the north. She
straddles out to the west beyond the Rhine. In the east she merges almost
imperceptibly into Poland.
a stupendous task it is to make a nation out of this medley of different races,
lands, traditions, and creeds! Goethe’s Faust exclaims, “There dwell,
alas! Two souls within this breast!” But within the breast of Germany
there dwell thousands of souls struggling for supremacy.
wonder, therefore, that last week the Hitler election poster which drew most
attention was this: “We Germans, placed in the centre of Europe, must hold
together more than other nations. We must be united if we are not to
perish - Bismarck. Hitler has fulfilled these prophetic words of
Bismarck. Vote for him on August 19”.
longing for unity is the subconscious cause of Hitler’s fanatical desire to
mould the country into one single form. It explains his ruthlessness in
stamping out differences of opinion, differences of uniforms, differences in
political parties, and differences in religious beliefs. Hitler’s
revolution is a violent swing of the pendulum away from the ramshackle
discordant medley which was Germany to a super-regimented, forcefully cemented
people who are to speak with one voice, think with one brain, and march at a
fear that Germany might crumble to pieces is Hitler’s trump card, and he will
use it skillfully. He will, when bread and potatoes and fats run short,
paint a picture of the world threatening Germany. He will implore his
fellow-countrymen to tighten their belts for the sake of German unity. He
will depict himself as the keystone of the structure of a united nation.
men who hate his methods will rally to his side because they fear that if he
falls chaos and conflict will rend the country and there will be farewell to
the dream and prayer of “Deutschland Uber Alles!”