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Anti-Marxism - Secondary Sources

Alan Bullock - Hitler

Hitler wanted to destroy Marxism:

“I have resolved to be the destroyer of Marxism. This I shall achieve … ” (117).

“Nazi Putsch Trial 1924,” page 1.

Hitler was against the equality of individuals:

In Hitler's eyes the inequality of individuals and of races was one of the laws of Nature. This poor wretch, often half-starved, without a job, family, or home, clung obstinately to any belief that would bolster up the claim of his own superiority. He be­longed by right, he felt, to the Herrenmenschen. To preach equality, was to threaten the belief which kept him going, that he was different from the labourers, the tramps, the Jews, and the Slavs with whom he rubbed shoulders in the streets” (40).

Hitler was against unions and equality:

“Least of all did he feel any sympathy with the attempts of the poor and the exploited to improve their position by their own efforts. Hitler’s hatred was directed not so much against the rogues, beggars, bankrupt business men, and declasse ‘gentlemen’ who were the flotsam and jetsam drifting in and out of the hostel in the Meldemannstrasse, as against the working men who belonged to organizations like the Social Democratic Party and the trade unions and who preached equality and the solidarity of the working classes. It was these, much more than the former, who threatened his claim to superiority. Solidarity was a virtue for which Hitler had no use. He passionately refused to join a trade union, or in any way to accept the status of a working man. The whole ideology of the working-class movement was alien and hateful to him. … the working men were the victims of a deliberate system for corrupting and poisoning the popular mind, organized by the Social Democratic Party’s leaders, who cynically exploited the distress of the masses for their own ends” (38).

Hitler got his anti-socialism from Georg von Schönerer

“From Schönerer Hitler took his extreme German Nationalism, his anti-Socialism his anti-Semitism, his hatred of the Hapsburgs and his programme of reunion with Germany” (44).

Hitler was anti-Marxist:

“Hitler spoke of 'stamping the Nazi Weltanschauung on the German people'. For its highest duty was intolerance: 'it is only the harshest principles and an iron resolution which can unite the nation into a single body capable of resistance – and thereby able to be led successfully in politics. The main plank in the Nationalist Socialist programme,' Hitler declared in 1937, 'is to abolish the liberalistic concept of the individual and the Marxist concept of humanity and to substitute for them the Volk community, rooted in the soil and bound together by the bond of its common blood.'

“While Hitler's attitude towards liberalism was one of contempt, towards Marxism he showed an implacable hostility” (405).

Conservatives today still ignore the differences between communism & socialism like the Nazis:

“Ignoring the profound differences between Communism and Social Democracy in practice and the bitter hostility between the rival working-class parties, he saw in their common ideology the embodiment of all that he detested - mass democracy and a levelling egalitarianism as opposed to the authoritarian state and the rule of an elite; equality and friendship among peoples as opposed to racial inequality and the domination of the strong; class solidarity versus national unity; internationalism versus nationalism. With Marxism there could be no compromise. 'When people cast in our teeth our intolerance we proudly acknowledge it - yes, we have formed the inexorable decision to destroy Marxism in Germany down to its very last root'” (406).

Noel Ignatin -"Fascism:
Some Common Misconceptions"

The aim of the Nazis was not the establishment of German supremacy, although they occasionally referred, for mass consumption, to that goal. The aim of the fascists was the establishment of the master race (6).

Richard Wolff

According to Richard D. Wolff and his video about socialism published on AcTVism.org, a definition of what socialism is has been controversial. Yet in the past there has been a dominant understanding of what socialism basically is. It consists of three things:

1. Means of production are owned either collectively, such as in a co-op or a kibbutz, or by the state.

2. The marketing of the products is controlled by the state rather than by the market.

3. The employer/employee relationship is broken down and no longer exists.

In China, Soviet Russia, or other such so-called “communist” or “socialist” countries, the first two steps were clearly achieved but never the last step. Yet in order for a country to truly to be called Marxist, this last step must be attained. Otherwise, all that is achieved is merely another form of capitalism still. Examples of this could be historical slavery economic systems or medieval feudal economic systems. These are still forms of capitalism although radically different from the current form of capitalism that people are more familiar with.

 

So a definition of socialism is when the relationship between the employer and the employees is dissolved in favor of a more democratic structure of the means of production where the workers together all decide on how to conduct the daily business of the corporation rather than a board or a CEO.

Michael Newman -
Socialism: A Very Short Introduction

"The bitter division between the SPD and the Communist Party [in Weimar Germany] then prevented a united front against Nazism, though both parties were immediate victims after Hitler's takeover of power in 1933" (48). 

Sebastian Haffner -
The Meaning of Hitler

"... Marxism, had to be uprooted and that meant ... the physical annihilation of the Marxist politicians and intellectuals who, fortunately, included quite a lot of Jews ..." (22).

"Anyone who, along with Marx, sees the essential or even the sole characteristic of socialism in the public ownership of the means of production will naturally deny that socialist side of National Socialism. As Hitler did not nationalize any means of production he was no socialist — this settles the matter for the Marxists" (40-41).

Haffner quoting Hitler's Mein Kampf (without section or page references): "If the Jew with the aid of his Marxist creed remains
victorious over the nations of this world, then his crown will be the wreath on the grave of mankind, then this planet will once more, as millions of years ago, move through the ether devoid of human beings" (72-73).

Ishay Landa - Interview with
NILS SCHNIEDERJANN

NILS SCHNIEDERJANN:
"But why were the Nazis able to call Marxism a great evil that must be eradicated, while they used socialism as a positive slogan for their movement?"

ISHAY LANDA:

"By the term 'socialism' they didn’t mean anything that we would even remotely recognize as socialist, but rather their policy of intervening in the free market for the benefit of the capitalists. By the term 'Marxism,' on the other hand, they meant social democracy and the protection of basic workers’ rights. In Mein Kampf, Hitler says that his antisemitic world view was finally formed the moment he realized that the Jews were the masterminds of social democracy. Nazi discourse was a very convenient — if cynical — way of manipulating concepts and ascribing them completely new meanings."

NILS SCHNIEDERJANN:

"If this is so clear, why have there been these recent debates in Germany about a supposedly socialist policy of the Nazis?"

 

ISHAY LANDA:
"Well, this is actually not so new, and has a long history. Already during the time of fascism there were attempts to portray the Nazis as socialists, for example by Ludwig von Mises. But in general, the efforts to establish a direct link between Marxism and National Socialism was a minority position. Then, beginning in the 1980s, a turning point occurred when a revisionist current began to emerge in fascism studies. It sought to link fascism much more strongly with the political left, with revolution and with anti-capitalism. This happened at a time when neoliberalism was beginning to dismantle the welfare state. Which made this ideological move very convenient. Advocates of this policy could say: 'The Nazis actually stood for an authoritarian form of socialism!' Attacking the welfare state could thus be presented as an anti-fascist act, a resistance to Nazism and a purging of its political residues."

Jacobin, "The Nazis Weren’t Socialists — They Were Hypercapitalists," 2023.

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