For information on the referencing of Internet sources see Chapter 4 of S D Stein Learning, Teaching and Researching on the Internet. Addison Wesley Longman. November 1998


Statements by Hitler and Senior Nazis
Concerning Jews and Judaism

Speech delivered by Hitler in Salzburg, 7 or 8 August 1920. (NSDAP meeting)

The following quotation is from a shorthand transcript.

"This is the first demand we must raise and do [reversal of the Versailles Treaty provisions]: that our people be set free, that these chains be burst asunder, that Germany be once again captain of her soul and master of her destinies, together with all those who want to join Germany. (Applause)

And the fulfillment of this first demand will then open up the way for all the other reforms.  And here is one thing that perhaps distinguishes us from you [Austrians] as far as our programme is concerned, although it is very much in the spirit of things: our attitude to the Jewish problem.

For us, this is not a problem you can turn a blind eye to-one to be solved by small concessions.  For us, it is a problem of whether our nation can ever recover its health, whether the Jewish spirit can ever really be eradicated.  Don't be misled into thinking you can fight a disease without killing the carrier, without destroying the bacillus.  Don't think you can fight racial tuberculosis without taking care to rid the nation of the carrier of that racial tuberculosis.  This Jewish contamination will not subside, this poisoning of the nation will not end, until the carrier himself, the Jew, has been banished from our midst. (Applause)

Source: D Irving, The War Path: Hitler's Germany 1933-1939. Papermac, 1978, p.xxi

Hitler's Conversation with Josef Hell, 1922

When Hell asked Hitler what he intended doing if he ever had full freedom of action against the Jews, his response was:

"If I am ever really in power, the destruction of the Jews will be my first and most important job. As soon as I have power, I shall have gallows after gallows erected, for example, in Munich on the Marienplatz-as many of them as traffic allows. Then the Jews will be hanged one after another, and they will stay hanging until they stink. They will stay hanging as long as hygienically possible. As soon as they are untied, then the next group will follow and that will continue until the last Jew in Munich is exterminated. Exactly the same procedure will be followed in other cities until Germany is cleansed of the last Jew!" (quoted in John Toland, Adolf Hitler. London: Book Club Associates, 1977, p.116)

Hitler, Adolf- "Nation and Race".  Chapter XI of Mein Kampf [My Struggle]

The document referenced by the above link is Chapter 11 of Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf [My Struggle], which dwells especially on his views on the significance of race in culture and social systems, and particularly on his perception of the role of Aryans and Jews  in culture creation and/or destruction. Mein Kampf appeared in two volumes, published in 1925 and 1927. This chapter features in the first, and more significant volume, and was written during 1924 when Hitler was incarcerated in Landsberg prison, Bavaria, following the unsuccessful Beer Hall Putsch (small uprising) of 1923. Mein Kampf sets forth Hitler's views on a very wide range of topics, Hitler being one of those individuals who felt able to expound on virtually any subject. In the context of the Final Solution to the Jewish Question, the views he expressed in this book on Jews are especially important as his ultimate intentions towards them can only be inferred from publicly known statements, no written orders relating to their extermination having been found.

Despite the fact that it has been dubbed "turgid, repetitious, wandering, illogical" [EB, CD-ROM, 1998], it was an extremely important document because of its widespread appeal to certain sections of society in Germany and elsewhere. By 1939 it had been translated into eleven languages and had sold more than five million copies. Today it is still in print and can be found reproduced at various sites on the Internet.

Hitler Interview in the New York Staatszeitung, 1933.

"Why does the world shed crocodile’s tears over the richly merited fate of a small Jewish minority? … I ask Roosevelt, I ask the American people: Are you prepared to receive in your midst these well-poisoners of the German people and the universal spirit of Christianity? We would willingly give everyone of them a free steamer-ticket and a thousand-mark note for travelling expenses, if we could get rid of them." (Quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.727-28)

Hitler Speech to the Doctors’ Union in April 1933 on racial purification of the German people.

"The greatest achievements in intellectual life can never be produced by those of alien race but only by those who are inspired by the Aryan or German spirit. In view of the narrowness of the space within which German intellectual work and German intellectual workers have to live they had a natural moral claim to precedence and preference. If the number of foreigners admitted to take part in German intellectual life was out of proportion to the number of native Germans sharing in that life foreigners might interpret this as a recognition of the intellectual superiority of other races." (Quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.728)

Rosenberg, Alfred

"Anti-Semitism is the unifying element of the reconstruction of Germany."

(Referred to at the Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Vol.3, Nuremberg, 1947, p. 35)

"Germany will regard the Jewish question as solved only after the very last Jew has left the greater German living space...  Europe will have its Jewish question solved only after the very last Jew has left the continent." (Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Vol.3, Nuremberg, 1947, p. 35)

Ley, Robert

"We swear we are not going to abandon the struggle until the Last Jew in Europe has been exterminated and is actually dead.  It is not enough to isolate the Jewish enemy of mankind-the Jew has got to be exterminated." (Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Vol.3, Nuremberg, 1947, p. 36)

"The second German secret weapon is anti-Semitism, because if it is consistently pursued by Germany, it will become a universal problem which all nations will be forced to consider." (Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Vol.3, Nuremberg, 1947, p. 36)

Hitler's Reasons for Nuremberg Legislation (Reich Citizenship Law, Law for the Protection of German Blood and German Honor)

"One of the principle reasons for the legislation in Germany is the necessity to combat Bolshevism. This legislation is not anti-Jewish, but pro-German. The rights of Germans are thereby to be protected against destructive Jewish influences.

the Jews who formed less than one per cent. of the population tried to monopolize the cultural leadership of the people and flooded the intellectual professions, such as, for example, jurisprudence and medicine. The influence of this intellectual Jewish class in Germany had everywhere a disintegrating effect . For this reason in order to bar the spread of this process of disintegration it became essential to take steps to establish a clear and clean separation between the two races.

He stressed [that these legislative measures] served to protect the Jew, and this was proved by the fact that since the passing of the restrictive measures anti-Jewish sentiment in the country decreased. (Interview with Mr Baillie of the United Press, quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.732)

Hitler's Closing speech at the Nuremberg Party Conference, 1938 (12 September)

"When the question is still put to us why National Socialism fights with such fanaticism against the Jewish element in Germany, why it pressed and still presses for its removal then the answer can only be: Because National Socialism desires to establish a true community of the people…. Because we are National Socialists we can never suffer an alien race which has nothing to do with us to claim the leadership of our working people." (Adolf Hitler, quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.735)

Hitler's Speech to Party Congress at Nuremberg, September 12, 1938

Hitler commented, inter alia, on what he perceived as the self-righteous and hypocritical attitude of the democratic countries toward the plight of Jews under German control:

"They complain… of the boundless cruelty with which Germany-and now Italy also-seek to rid themselves of their Jewish elements. All these great democratic empires taken together have only a handful of people to the square kilometre. Both in Italy and Germany there are over 140. Yet formerly Germany, without blinking an eyelid, for whole decades admitted these Jews by the hundred thousand. But now… when the nation is no longer willing to be sucked dry by these parasites, on every side one hears nothing but laments. But lamentations have not led these democratic countries to substitute helpful activity at last for their hypocritical questions; on the contrary, these countries with icy coldness assured us that obviously there was no place for the Jews in their territory. … So no help is given, but morality is saved. (Source: The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939. Edited by N H Haynes. Volume I, pp.719-720 Oxford University Press, 1942)

Hitler saw the justification for these remarks in the reluctance of many countries in Europe, the Americas and elsewhere to accommodate the large numbers of Jews who by this time were prepared to emigrate at any cost. In particular he undoubtedly had in mind the lack of substantive action that was manifest in the deliberations and conclusions of the Evian conference.

Das Schwarze Korps [SS Newspaper] 24 November 1938

"So, we are now going to have a total solution to the Jewish question.  The programme is clear.  It reads: total separation, total segregation!  What does this mean?  It does not only mean the total exclusion of the Jews from the German economic system...   It means much more!  No German can be expected to live under the same roof as Jews. The Jews must be chased out of our houses and our residential districts and made to live in rows or blocks of houses where they can keep to themselves and come into contact with Germans as little as possible.  They must be clearly identified....  And when we compel the rich Jews to provide for the `poor' of their race, which will certainly be necessary, they will all sink together into a pit of   criminality.  As this happens, we will be faced with the harsh necessity of eradicating the Jewish underworld, just as we root out criminals from our own orderly state: with fire and sword.  The result will be the certain and absolute end of   Jewry in Germany; its complete annihilation!" [Source: Benno Müller-Hill. Murderous Science. New York: CSHL Press, 1998, p.48]

Extracts from "The Poisonous Mushroom", antisemitic Der Stuermer Tract, 1938

Hitler's Speech to the Reichstag, 30 January, 1939:

"Europe cannot find peace until the Jewish question has been solved. …One thing I should like to say on this day [the sixth anniversary of his being appointed Chancellor of the Reich] which may be memorable for others as well as for us Germans. In the course of my life I have very often been a prophet and have usually been ridiculed for it. … Today I will once more be a prophet: if the international Jewish financiers in and outside Europe should succeed in plunging the nations once more into a world war, then the result will not be the Bolshivization of the earth, and thus the victory of Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe."

This statement has been taken as being particularly significant by many scholars,   signposting the general trend of Hitler’s views on the ultimate fate of Jews who fell under German hegemony.

Hitler's Speech in Munich, 24 February, 1939

"the Jewish question today was no longer a German problem: it had become a world problem." quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.743)

Hitler's Speech in Wilhelmshaven, 1 April, 1939

"Only when this Jewish bacillus infecting the life of peoples has been removed can one hope to establish a co-operation amongst the nations which shall be built up on a lasting understanding." quoted in N H Baynes, The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, Oxford University Press, 1942, Volume I, pp.743)

Reinhard Heydrich's Instructions to Einsatzgruppen leaders, 21 September, 1939

During and following the invasion of Poland, special tasks concerning control of the occupied Polish population, both Christian and Jewish, were entrusted to special SS units known as Einsatzgruppen, or task forces, of which there were, during the period preceding the invasion of the Soviet Union, five. A significant set of instructions to their commanders was issued by Reinhard Heydrich, SS-Lieutenant-General and head of the Reich Main Security Office, on September 27, 1939. Their significance lay in the setting out of a policy for concentrating the Jews in particular locations in preparation for some subsequent and unspecified "final goal" relating to their eventual disposition. The instructions stipulated that

"A distinction must be made between:

    1. the final goal (which will require a lengthy period) and
    2. the stages toward the achievement of this final goal (which can be carried out on a short-term basis).

… The following instructions and directives serve simultaneously the purpose of encouraging the chiefs of the Einsatzgruppen to reflect on the practical issues.

The first preliminary measure for achieving the final goal is the concentration of the Jews from the countryside in the larger cities. It must be speedily implemented. … as few concentration points as possible should be established so that only those cities are designated which are either railway junctions or at least lie on a railway line. As a matter of principle, Jewish communities of under 500 are to be dissolved and transferred to the nearest concentration city. …

It must be ensured that the economic exploitation of the occupied territories does not suffer as a result of these measures." (quoted in J Noakes and G Pridham (eds.) Nazism 1919-1945: A Documentary Reader. Vol. 3 Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 1988, pp.1051-1053)

These instructions feature importantly in debates concerning the objectives of German Jewish policy at this particular historical juncture. In particular, what interpretation should be placed on the phrase "the final goal" which will require "a lengthy period" and the "stages towards the achievement of this final goal (which can be carried out on a short-term basis)? Does this imply, as some historians contend, that by September 1939 Nazi decision-makers already presaged the extermination of European Jewry, "the final goal"? Alternatively, as other historians contend, was the "final goal", at this time, still construed as "resettlement" in Eastern Poland or elsewhere? Concentration near railway junctions would be compatible with either policy. Reference to the need to ensure the economic exploitation of the occupied territories, on the other hand, would not be inconsistent with a policy of resettlement. (cf. A J Mayer, L Davidowicz and C Browning, among others.)

Heinrich Himmler, 25 November 1939

The contrary thrusts of German Jewish policy are evident, also, in a statement made by Heinrich Himmler, Reich Leader of the SS and Chief of the German Police, on 25 November 1939.

"We won’t waste much time on the Jews. It’s great to get to grips with the Jewish race at last. The more they die the better… We want to put half to three-quarters of all Jews east of the Vistula. We will crush these Jews wherever we can. … Get the Jews out of the Reich… We have no use for Jews in the Reich. Probably the line of the Vistula, behind this line no more. We are the most important people here…" (Source: J Noakes, G Pridham. Nazism, 1919-1945: A Documentary Reader. Volume 3. p.1055. University of Exeter Press, 1991)

At the time that this statement was made Himmler had embarked on an ambitious policy of demographic restructuring involving the transfer of ethnic Germans to portions of Poland that had been annexed by the Reich, known as the Reichsgau Wartheland (in western Poland, bordering Germany), movement of Poles who had been resident in this area to the remainder of German occupied Poland, known as the General Government, and movement of Jews from the Reich and the Wartheland to Eastern Poland.

Himmler Memorandum "Some thoughts about the treatment of foreign peoples in eastern territories."  23 March 1941

"I hope to see the very concept of Jewry completely obliterated."

Hitler’s Table Talk, October 1941

"From the rostrum of the Reichstag, I prophesied to Jewry that, in the event of war’s proving inevitable, the Jew would disappear from Europe. That race of criminals has on its conscience the two million dead of the First World War, and now already hundreds and thousands more. Let nobody tell me that all the same we can’t park them in the marshy parts of Russia! Who’s worrying about our troops? It’s not a bad idea, by the way, that public rumor attributes to us a plan to exterminate the Jews. Terror is a salutary thing." (quoted in John Toland, Adolf Hitler. London: Book Club Associates, 1977, p.702-3)

Toland speculates that at this stage Hitler had already taken the decision to exterminate European Jewry, and "began making overt remarks during his table conversations, perhaps as an experiment in revelation." (ibid, p.702)

Speech by Hans Frank, Governor General of the General Government, Poland, April 12, 1940


if the authority of the National-Socialist Reich is to be upheld, then it is unacceptable that representatives of the Reich should be obliged to meet Jews when they enter or leave the house, and are in this way liable to infection with epidemics. [I] therefore [intend] to clear the city of Cracow [the seat of the Governor-General of the General Government] of Jews, as far as at all possible, by November 1, 1940.  There will be a major operation to move the Jews, on the grounds that it is absolutely intolerable that thousands upon thousands of Jews should go slinking around and occupy apartments in the city which the Führer has granted the great honor of becoming the seat of a high Reich Authority... [Source: Y Arad, Documents on the Holocaust. London: Pergamon Press, 1981,pp.197-98]

Address by Hans Frank, Governor-General of the General Government, Poland,  to senior members of his administration, December 16, 1941.

"Let me tell you quite frankly: in one way or another we will have to finish with the Jews. The führer once expressed it as follows: should Jewry once again succeed in inciting a world war, the bloodletting could not be limited to the peoples they drove to war but the Jews [themselves] would be done for in Europe. if the Jewish tribe survives the war in Europe while we sacrifice our blood for the preservation of Europe, this war will be but a partial success. Basically, I must presume, therefore, that the Jews will disappear. To that end I have started negotiations to expel them to the east. In any case, there will be a great Jewish migration.

But what is to become of the Jews? Do you think that they will be settled in villages in the conquered eastern territories? In Berlin we have been told not to complicate matters: since neither these territories [nor our own] have any use for them, we should liquidate them ourselves! Gentlemen, I must ask you to remain unmoved by pleas for pity. We must annihilate the Jews wherever we encounter them and wherever possible, in order to maintain the overall mastery of the Reich here….

For us the Jews are also exceptionally damaging because they are being such gluttons. There are an estimated 2.5 million Jews in the General Government, perhaps…. 3.5 million. These 3.5 million Jews, we cannot shoot them, nor can we poison them. Even so, we can take steps which in some way or other will pave the way for [their] destruction, notably in connection with the grand measures to be discussed in the Reich. The General Government must become just as judenfrie [free of Jews] as the Reich." (quoted in A J Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken: The "Final Solution" in History. London: Verso, 1990, pp. 302-03)

This statement was made some five weeks before the meeting of senior officials at 56-58 Grosser Wannsee, Berlin, on January 20, 1942, where the final administrative details concerning the Final Solution of the Jewish question were discussed in detail. The conference had originally been planned for December 9, 1941.

Statement by Reinhard Heydrich at the Wannsee Conference, 20 January, 1942, Berlin

"To take the place of emigration, and with the prior approval of the führer, the evacuation of the Jews to the East has become another possible solution.

Although both courses of action [emigration and evacuation] must, of course, be considered as nothing more than temporary expedients, they do help to provide practical experience which should be of great importance in view of the coming Endlösung (final solution) of the Jewish question." (quoted in A J Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken: The "Final Solution" in History. London: Verso, 1990, p. 304)

Speech By Adolf Hitler, Berlin, September 30, 1942

"There was a time when the Jews in Germany also laughed at my prophecies. I do not know whether they are still laughing today, or whether they have been cured of laughter. But take my word for it: they will stop laughing everywhere." (quoted in A J Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken: The "Final Solution" in History. London: Verso, 1990, p. 344)

Statement by Hitler, March 20, 1943

"By now it is clear that [the conflict between Germany and the USSR] has gradually assumed the characteristics of a struggle that can only be compared to the greatest historical events of the past. The pitiless and merciless war that has been forced upon us by external Jewry will lay the entire Continent in ruins unless the forces of [eastern] destruction can be stopped before reaching Europe’s borders. [Should they break through], the worst consequences would be not burned cities and wrecked cultural monuments but the bestial massacres of masses of human beings comparable to those that followed the invasions of the Huns and Mongols out of inner Asia." (quoted in A J Mayer, Why Did the Heavens Not Darken: The "Final Solution" in History. London: Verso, 1990, p. 346)

Adolf Hitler's Political Testament, 29 April, 1945

Document compiled by Dr S D Stein
Last update 03/04/00
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