Tuesday, November 16, 2004

[Excerpt] Berlin Stahlhelm Manifesto

The manifesto was first published in Stahlhelm und Staat 1927. Its publication here should not be viewed as sign of shared beliefs, allthough that is true to some extent. Rather, it has been published to give a better understanding of some of the movements that Ernst Jünger argues against in, for example, "'Nationalismus' and Nationalismus".

Stahlhelm, the union of battle-tested Germans soldiers returned undefeated from the front and the German cadets trained by them in the spirit of valor, announces on the eight annual memorial to the Reich's soldiers of the front in the capital city of the Reich the political goals, to struggle for which it and all its comrades accept anew as their duty.

Stahlhelm proclaims the battle against all softness and cowardice, which seek to weaken and destroy the consciousness of the German people through renunciation of the right of defense and will to defense.

Stahlhelm declares that it does not recognize the state of affairs created by the Treaty of Versailles and its later supplements. It therefore demands the recognition of the national state for all Germans, the restoration of the German right of defense, the effective revocation of the extorted acknowledgment of war guilt, and the regulation and reparation of war damages on the basis of the collective liability of all peoples responsible for the world war. These goals may not be abandoned in the execution of the rights stipulated in the treaty in the premature clearing of the occupied territories and in the adjustment of the eastern borders.

Stahlhelm demands the renewed recognition of the national colors: black, white and red. Under this flag the German Reich conducted the period of its incomparably heroic struggle against a world of enemies.

The economic and social want of our people is caused by the deficiency of Lebensraum and the territory in which to work. Stahlhelm supports the foreign policy that opens up settlement and work territories for the German population surplus and that maintains vital cultural, economic, and political ties between these territories ande the core motherland. Stahlhelm does not want the German people, driven by want to desperation to become the victim and storm center of bolshevism.

Stahlhelm embraces the conviction that the destiny of the German people may be determined only by a strong leadership able and willing to bear responsibility for it. Therefore Stahlhelm demands an increase in the competency of the president of the Reich; the securing of the welfare of the nation and people against the caprice of parliamentary emergency agreements and contingencies; and the creation of an electoral right the results of which guarantee both the true will of the people and the possibility of genuine administrative responsibility.

Stahlhelm does not want to form or become a new party. But it does want to represent the civic will of the former front soldiers. It wants for its members to acquire the possibility and right of decisive participation in all positions of public service and popular representation, from the local community to the national government. The right of the front soldiers to this participation is based on the special aptitude that they gained through the closest connection between personal accomplishment and the most severe struggle of the German people for its rights and its future. [...]

True to its origins and its history, Stahlhelm opposes all efforts and conceptions that seek to divide the German people. It esteems highly the experience of old comradeship at the front and unity and wants to develop out of it a national sense of unity. It denies the validity of the materialist conception of history and the Marxist doctrine. It opposes the idea of class struggle. And in full recognition of the value among enterprise, entrepreneur, and fellow workers, Stahlhelm will not hinder an honest and decisive settlement of natural conflicts of interests. It demands, however, the maintenance and preservation of the transcending interest of the German community.

Stahlhelm looks with concern on the increasing separating of healthy popular forces from the native soil which accompanies increasing industrialization, and demands an agrarian policy that makes settlements possible. Interior colonization and a settlement policy for the strengthening of German Austria by filling the border area with German peasant villages are weapons in the struggle for national preservation in the employment of which Stahlhelm is able and willing to assist.

Stahlhelm demands that measures be taken against the increased foreign influence in our political, economic, and cultural life since the revolution and against the degeneration of ethical views.

Stahlhelm demands the recognition and achievement of its goals by the constitutional representatives of the German people in the administration and parliaments. It has firmly decided to struggle for its goals only through the employment of just and legal means together with all parliamentary and extraparliamentary forces among the German people that desire to maintain community with it for work and struggle.

This is the path and the will of the Stahlhelm for the internal and external liberation of Germany.

Hail to the Front!

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