BERLIN, SPORTPALAST

SPEECH OF APRIL 8, 1933

THE great epoch which for fourteen years we awaited has now begun. Germany is awake now....

I can say with pride, comrades of the SA and SS, that if the whole German people now was possessed of the spirit which is in us and in you, then Germany would be indestructible. Even without arms, Germany would represent an unheard-of strength through this inner will tempered like steel. It is true that this equality which is realized in you was realized only at the cost of that freedom of which others spoke. We have, too, adopted the principle of leadership, the conception of authority. That was a heavy sacrifice at a time when the whole people was running after the illusion of democracy and parliamentarianism, when millions believed that the majority was the source of a right decision. It was at this time that we began resolutely to build up an organization in which there was not one dictator but ten thousand. When our opponents say: 'It is easy for you: you are a dictator'- we answer them, 'No, gentlemen, you are wrong; there is no single dictator, but ten thousand, each in his own place.' And even the highest authority in the hierarchy has itself only one wish, never to transgress against the Supreme authority to which it, too, is responsible. We have in our Movement developed this loyalty in following the leader, this blind obedience of which all the others know nothing and which gave to us the power to surmount everything. For fourteen years we were assailed; the attempt was made to bend and break us by cunning, chicanery, and violence, by malice and terror, by everything imaginable. But this instrument of blind obedience remained unbroken, remained steadfast. All we endured was but tests from which we emerged stronger than ever.

In addition we have fostered the virtue of bravery. Today millions are pouring into our ranks. But the greater part of them must learn now what this brown army has practiced for years; they must all learn to face what tens of thousands of our comrades have faced, and have paid for with their blood, their lives.

We have succeeded out of our own free wills in once more inculcating in our people the courage which dares to attempt a task in the face of a world of foes.

Were the discipline of this Movement not so firm, those who today complain of the sacrifices demanded of them would have even more of which to complain. For what we fighters have gained does not compare to the amount of persecution we suffered. Let the bellyachers realize that, wherever they are. The Movement trains itself in this perfect discipline for the sake of Germany, to save our people from being cast down in the eyes of the world to the level of their opponents.

We have also utilized the virtue of persistence, of unwearying patience....

It was this virtue which made you, and therefore us, unconquerable, and which saved the nation. Fourteen years of struggle. It seems as though fate had saved up so terribly many victims especially for the last year of the struggle. Our Brown Shirts prohibited, the members tortured, terror heaped upon terror, and in the end the dissolution of the organization. It was a terribly sad time, and I know how hard it was for many to keep their faith that after all the hour would come at last. We almost doubted justice and providence. Then came the turning point, and battle after battle. Once more many doubted, and some even were beaten down by their doubt. And then came the time when we had to say 'No,' when for the first time it seemed that the way to power was opening before us, tempting us: and yet despite this we had to remain hard and say 'No, it is not possible in that way.' And for a second time the doors seemed to open and for the second time we had to say 'No, impossible.' And then at the third time the hour came and that was given to us which we could not but desire, which we had a right to desire, and at last the National Socialist Movement entered into the great period of its historic action....

We have now won power in Germany, and it is up to us to win the German people, to incorporate the people within the power. We must build the millions of our working men of all classes into a close community. This is a struggle which will again take years; but it is necessary if the 600,000 men of today are some day to be the six, eight, ten millions we need. Here, too, we know that if we rest, we rust, that if we stand still, we will retreat....

If in the future you continue to stand behind me as one man, in loyalty and obedience, no power in the world will be able to destroy this Movement. It will continue its victorious course. If you preserve the same discipline, the same obedience, the same comradeship and the same unbounded loyalty in the future - then nothing will ever extinguish this Movement in Germany. This is the request I make of you, for myself and in the name of all the comrades who are no longer among us....

Our National Socialist Movement, the SA and SS: Sieg Heil, Sieg Heil, Sieg Heil!