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Chapter XXI: The Psychological Interpretation of Culture and History

The Life and Death Struggle
Richard A. Koenigsberg



In a speech before the Reichstag on Jan. 30, 1937, Hitler explained the anti-Jewish policy he had inaugurated in National Socialist Germany:
We endeavor, as well as we can, to make the German people immune against this infection. A part of our measures is the avoidance of any close relationship with the carriers of this poisonous bacillus.

This policy, Hitler said, reflected his endeavor to make the German people "immune against this infection." Measures enacted by National Socialism were designed to enable the German people to avoid "close relationship with the carriers of this poisonous bacillus."

Measures to isolate and avoid contact with Jews evolved into the policy of extermination. Goebbels acknowledged in his diary entry of March 27, 1942 that the procedure was "pretty barbaric" and wrote that "not much will remain of the Jews." However, he was unapologetic. The policy of the Nazis, Goebbels believed, was necessary and unavoidable, a manifestation of the "life-and-death struggle" being waged between the "Aryan race and the Jewish bacillus."

Himmler, in a famous speech delivered to SS leaders and army generals on October 6, 1943, defended the radical policy undertaken by the Nazis:

If the Jews were still lodged in the body of the German nation, we would by now have reached the state of 1916-1917. We had the moral right, the duty towards our people to destroy this people that wanted to destroy us.
We do not want, in the end, because we have destroyed a bacillus to be infected by this bacillus and to die. I will not stand by while a slight infection forms. Whenever such an infected spot appears, we will burn it out.

The Nazi’s had the “moral right” to destroy the Jews, Himmler believed, because the Jews wanted to destroy Germany. It was necessary to “burn out” the infected spot.

In his 1935-6 propaganda booklet about the SS as an anti-Bolshevik battle organization, Himmler describes the struggle that has occurred throughout history between Jews and nations:

This battle against peoples conducted by Jews has belonged, so far as we can look back, to the natural course of life on our planet. One can calmly reach the conviction that this struggle of life and death is quite as much a law of nature as man's struggle against some epidemic, as the struggle of the plague bacillus against the healthy body.

Himmler states that the battle conducted by Jews against nations has belonged to the “natural course of life on our planet.” The struggle of life against death is as much a “law of nature” as man’s “struggle against some epidemic”—and as the “struggle of the plague bacillus against the healthy body.”

In other words, there are two struggles that are natural: the struggle of the plague-bacillus against the healthy body (struggle of Jews against nations); and man’s struggle against “some epidemic.” Jews struggling against nations and nations struggling against Jews, this was the “natural course of life on the planet.”

Who would prove victorious in this life against death struggle, the German nation or the Jewish bacillus? This is what Nazism was all about. This was the essence of Nazism. Germany had to defeat or destroy the Jewish bacillus before the bacillus destroyed Germany.