The Ideologists and First Financiers of Hitler P.2
Both the National Socialist Party, over which Hitler exercised dictatorial control from July 1921 onwards, and Organization C vied to influence the other. Hitler communicated regularly with Ehrhardt and tried to gain as many of Ehrhardt's followers for the NSDAP as he could.(1) Ehrhardt for his part, sent the student Hans Ulrich Klintzsch to lead the paramilitary Sturmabteilung (Storm Section) plus Hermann Goering in hopes of gaining control over it. Goering indeed became leader of the Storm Section from February 1923 onwards. And Klintzsch dispatched Franz Jaenicke, the co-founder of the Deutsch-Russischer Club (GermanRussian Club) in Berlin to found the NSDAP in the German capital.(2)
Organization C displayed a preoccupation with overt and subversive threats from the Soviet Union, seeking to coordinate its activities with White Russians, including members of Aufbau. Section A of Organization C under Captain Alfred Hoffmann cultivated contacts with nationalist German and various White Russian circles and led an anti- Bolshevistic counter-intelligence service.(3)
Already in November 1920, the time of Aufbau's founding, Hoffmann had declared in a speech that the far right's “emergence" in Bavaria could only occur after “the shattering of the Treaty of Versailles," and that this, in turn, would only be possible after the "successful German orientation of the coming Russia." Organization C policy thus connected nationalist Germany's welfare with that of a restored Russian monarchy.
Letters seized from Captain Hoffmann and the police questioning of members of Organization C indicate a high level of collaboration between the anti-Bolshevik organization and the National Socialist Party. Even before Organization C existed. Hoffmann had written Hitler personally with regard to personnel matters in the NSDAP and had worked to "prepare the ground for Hitler" in Wilhelmshaven.(4)
Moreover, Hoffmann's colleague Lieutenant-Commander Paul Werber, who represented Organization C in Northwestern Germany, carried out propaganda for the NSDAP and its organ, the Voelkischer Beobachter, even opening branches of the Party in this region.(5)
Lieutenant-Commander Werber also collaborated with Aufbau leader Scheubner-Richter. Werber became acquainted with a certain Dr. Ruethenick of the German Voelkisch Protection League in Bremen.(6)
Werber arranged for him to hold talks with the "leading personalities" in Munich, and in late August 192 1, Dr. Ruethenick met with Scheubner-Richter. Another member of Organization C, a certain Dr. Boermer, reassured Ruethenick that he had “come to the right person" in Scheubner-Richter, who had written a letter that had aided Ruethenick in raising $5,000, apparently for a mission to America under Dr. Boerner to gain financial support for far right activities in Germany, most likely from the anti-Semitic industrialist Henry Ford.(7)
Section B of Organization C under Manfred von Killinger oversaw military matters, notably supporting German self-defense organizations in Upper Silesia, most importantly Volunteer Corps Uplands, the only fully-armed formation of the roughly 80,000 German soldiers who opposed Polish Invaders." Pavel Bermondt-Avalov likewise possessed connections with Oberland in the fall of 1921, overseeing efforts in "Russian" military camps in Gerrnany to raise volunteers for action against the Poles in Upper Siiesia.(8) Volunteer Corps Uplands (Freikorps Oberland) displayed an ideology similar to White forces in the Russian Civil War, advertising for members with the assertion that "we fight Jewish-Russian Bolshevism and American-Jewish capitalism, both of which are diseased outgrowths of economic life. (9)
Hitler admired the Volunteer Corps Uplands, using it as a model for National Socialist paramilitary forces that had begun with the creation of a “Turn- und Sportabteilung”, actually a large-scale armed bodyguard, in the fall of 1920.(10) In his deposition for a court case against members of Oberland (Uplands)given in March 1921, Hitler noted that when "the concept of self-protection is taken up, then this selfprotection cannot effectively be achieved in the form of weak local defense(Einwohnerwehr), but only in the form of shock and fight-ready (stoss- und schlagbereiter) organizations roughly of the type “Oberland” (Uplands).(11)
In late 1922, Hitler called for the creation of the Greater German Worker's Party with Rossbach's assistance in order to expand his influence in northern Germany. Hitler did not achieve the success he had hoped for, but this initiative under Rossbach's immediate supervision improved collaboration between the southern National Socialist and northern voelkisch movements.(12)
Years after the Hitler/ Ludendorff Putsch of 1923 (see foto of the following “Hitlerprozess” on SESN home page) the Reichskommissar fur die Uberwachung der Offentlichen Ordnung, Weimar Germany's secret police, stressed the key role of Freikorps-type organizations in the early "radical night movement" in Germany, primarily Rossbach, Oberland, and Ehrhardt, which "stood at the center of the different putsch undertakings."
The report further noted that "the National Socialists were strongly infiltrated by Freikorps leaders and Freikorps ideas in the first years of its existence up until 1923.(13)
As a further indication of early Freikorps influence on National Socialism, Lieutenant Edmund Heines, who led the Munich branch of the Corps Rossbach, stressed in a speech at a National Socialist congress in November 1922 that everyone present shared the ethos of the "Baltikumer" (Baltic fighters).(14) Around this time, members of the NSDAP were heard singing a Freikorps song, "The Republic Asked Us," which includes the lines: "We do not want a Jew republic / Phooey! Jew republic, ! For it is to blame. / For they yelled: bow-wow-wow! / And we yelled: throw them out! Throw them out! Throw them out!(15)
The intensely anti-Semitic Organization C became best known for assassinating the Jewish leader Walther Rathenau, who had served as Germany's Foreign Minister since January 1922, in Berlin on June 24, 1922.(16) On April 16, 1922, Rathenau had signed the Treaty of Rapallo with Soviet Foreign Minister Georgil Chicherin, making Germany the first western country to recognize the Soviet Union officially.(17)
Already in early April, Organization C had sent agents to Genua, Italy, where an international conference was taking place from which the Rapallo Treaty ultimately emerged, in order to assassinate Soviet representatives if given the chance.(18)
This mission demonstrates the degree to which Organization C leadership despised efforts to seek rapprochement with the Soviet Union. Rightist Germans and White Russians in Germany hated Rathenau for signing the Treaty of Rapallo, and his action sealed his doom.
A few days prior to Rathenau's assassination, a high-level Aufbau delegation that included Scheubner-Richter, Biskupskii, and Poltavets-Ostranitsa arrived in Budapest, where they met with members of the Russian Monarchical Club, which represented Hungary's approximately 3,500 White Russians. The Club's president, Prince Mirza Kazern Bek, had long cultivated close ties with Aufbau.Kazern Bek gave a public speech at which the Atijbatt delegation was present soon after Rathenau's assassination, noting that the death of the politician had "cleared many obstacles out of the way of the German nationalists."
He offered the hope that "German policy, which had gone astray, now will be directed in a better path," and he further noted, "it goes completely without saying that Rathenau's death will also strengthen our connection with Germany, for it has given rise to a strengthening of the national idea.”(19) Aufbau's high-level delegation attracted unfavorable attention in the wake of Rathenau's assassination, notable when the Wiener Morgenzeitung (Vienna Morning Newspaper) released an article on the conference in Budapest under the provocative title, "A Conference of Murderers in Budapest," in its July 1, 1922 edition.(21)
The Wiener Morgenzeitung’s article assertion that (Aufbau member) Colonel Karl Bauer, whose adjutant Lieutenant Alfred Gunther had been arrested in connection with the Rathenau murder, maintained close connections with various White Russians and Hungarian rightists was indeed true.(22)
In his own defense, Scheubner-Richter told the German Embassy in Budapest that his arrival date of June 22, 1922 demonstrated that he had not come with the purpose of discussing the changed political situation that had arisen with Rathenau's death.(23)
While hard evidence is lacking. it is quite possible that Scheubner-Richter and his colleagues possessed advanced knowledge of Rathenau's impending assassination and left Munich in order both to distance themselves from suspicion of complicity and to strengthen ties with Hungarian rightists in light of the soon-to-be altered political situation. In any case, Biskupskii and others around him in Aufbau praised Rathenau's assassination, drawing suspicion of their involvement in the deed.(24)
As a further indication of Aufbau's complicity in Rathenau's murder, the former Kapp Putsch conspirator Karl Bauer who, among other duties, worked as Aufbau's contact man in Vienna, was implicated in Rathenau's assassination, throwing suspicion on, among others, his close colleague Biskupskil and the contact man whom he and Biskupskii used in Budapest, General Glasenap.(25) Moreover, Bauer's adjutant and Ludendorff s secretary during the Kapp Putsch, the above-mentioned Gunther, a Gruppenleiter (group leader) in Organization C, was suspected of conspiring in Rathenau's murder, and authorities found recent suspicious letters from Aufbau members Ludendorff and Bauer at his residence.(26)
Like another promint conspirator of Organization C arrested in connection with Rathenau's assassination, Walther Steinbeck, Ganther had close links with the NSDA. providing a link between Aufbau and the National Socialist Party in conspiratorial terrorist operations. After his brush with the authorities, Ganther went to Munich, where he was well acquainted with Sturmabteilung leader Klintzsch and Hitler as well, and he began working for the NSDAP, serving in the Fahndungsabteilung (detective department) that observed the political police. He was later sought in connection with the June 4, 1922 assassination attempt on Phillip Scheidemann, who had proclaimed the German Republic on November 9, 1918.(27)
Despite the evidence against him and his close associates, Bauer was able to avoid prosecution for Rathenau's murder, and he continued his subversive activities in league with Aufbau. In August 1922, he transferred large sums of money to Aufbau in general and to Biskupskii in particular. Authorities concluded that some of these funds were to be used to carry out political terrorism in Gcrmany.(28) Bauer threw more suspicion on Aufbau as an organization that fostered terrorist activities when he was ultimately arrested for planning the assassination of Scheidemann.(29)
In addition to engaging in political terror against leftist political leaders in the course of 1922, Aufbau broke with Markov II's increasingly pro-French “Supreme Monarchical Council”, unequivocally supporting Kirill Romanov. The pro-German heir to the Russian throne.
Kirill and his wife Viktoria channeled considerable amounts of money from the anti-Semitic American industrialist Henry Ford, as well as from their own means to Aufbau, which diverted some of these funds to further the rise of Hitler's National Socialist Party.
In February 1922, Aufbau leaders Scheubner- Richter, Biskupskii, and Ludendorff urged Kirill to move from the French Riviera to Bavaria so that he could act in the center of his German base of support.(30)
Anticipating Kirill's arrival in Germany, General Ludendorff worked to establish an intelligence service for Kirill in early April 1922. He asked Walther Nicolai, who had served him as the head of the German Army High Command Intelligence Service during World War one, to use his considerable experience and connections to establish a reliable pro-Kirill intelligence service for the struggle against Bolshevism.(31)
Nicolai met with Aufbau leaders Ludendorff and Scheubner- Richter in the middle of April 1922 and agreed to establish an anti-Bolshevik intelligence service under his leadership so that Ludendorff and his allies, including Hitler, would have a reliable source of information on events in the Soviet Union. The money for the intelligence service, code-named "Project S,- came from Kirill, and Nicolaj sent the information his service acquired in regular reports beginning in the first half of July 1922.(32)
Scheubner-Richter, in addition to using the agency's information for Aufbauf's purposes, passed it on to the National Socialist Party, with which Aufbau as a whole was ever increasingly allied .
1) Remmer's letter from May 7, 1923, BHSAM, BSA6 36, number 103009, 22. 23.
2) Remmer's testimony from June 2, 1923, BHSAM, BS.WA 36, number 103009, 22, 23; PDM report to the BS,VL4'fTom June 7, 1923. BHSAM, BSMA'36, number 103009, 31.
3) LGPO report from May 7, 1923, GSAPK, Repositur 77, title 1809, number 9. 121
4) So0 report to the AA from August 22, 1923. PAAA, 83582, 94; Scheubner-Richter. "Russland und England," Aufbau-Korrespondenz, May 17. 1923. 2.
5) Aus der russisch-monarchistischen Bewegung,- Aufbau-Korrespondenz--. July 20. 1923, 2.
6) Remmer's testimony from June I and 2, 1923. BHSAM, BSMA 36. number 103009, 8. 9; Remmer's letter from May 7, 1923, BHSAM, BSMA 36, number 103009, 14, 15.
7) PDM report to the BSMA from June 7, 1923, BHSAM, BSMAf 36, number 103009, 3 1.
8) RUo0 reports from January 24, 1923 and January 28, 1924, RGVA (TKhIDK).fond 772, opis 3, delo 81a,45.
9) DB report from June 8, 1923, RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 7, opis 1, delo 386, reel 2. 129.
10) PRO letter to the BSA6 from November 20, 1924, BHSAM. BS.W.436, number 10435 1, 1: Lampe. Dnevnik Berlin, March 19-22, 1923, GARF,fond 5853, opis 1, delo 10. reel 2. 4132,- DB report from February 1, 1923, RGVA (TKhIDK).fond 7, opis 1, delo 396, reel 4, 369.
11) DB report from June 8, 1923. RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 7. opis 1, delo 386, reel 2. 129.
12)"Die 'Russische Tribune' uber die Regierungsformen in Russland.- Aufbau-Korrespondenz. August 25. 1923,3.
13) PDM report to the BSMI from September 3. 1923. BHSAM. BSA 36, number 103009, 36.
14) MAE report to Ferdinand Foch from May 31, 1922, RGVA (TKhIDK) fond 198. opis 17. delo 406. reel 1.82.
15)RUo0 report from August 6. 1923. BA. Reich 134. number 76. 76.
16) Adolf Hitler, speech on August 19, 1923. Saemtliche Aufzeichnungen, 975.
17) BSMA- report to the RUo0 from September 26, 1923, BHSAM. BSMA 36. number 103009. 35.
18) Interview with Mathilde Scheubner-Richter on April 3. 1936. ASDAPHA, BA. NS 26, number 1263. 6.
19) APA report to the A9N from November 2, 1937, RGVfond 519, opis 4, delo 26,134.
20) Interview with Mathilde Scheubner-Richter on April 3, 1936, NSDAPHA, BA. AS 26, number 1263. 7.
21) Endres, “Aufzeichnungen uber den Hitlerputch.”
22) Endres. "Aufzeichnungen ueber den Hitlerputsch." BHSAM, AK. Handschriftensammlung. number 925. 56.
23) The Hitler Trial: Before the People s Court in Munich, vol. 1. trans. H. Francis Freniere. eds. Lucie Karcic. and Philip Fandek (Arlington: University Publications of America, 1976), 59.
24) RUoO report [ 1925?1. RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 772. opis 3. delo 781. 4: RUoO report to the BHSAM from January 31. 1924, BHSAM, BSMA 36, number 103456, 8.
25) RUo0 report from February 9, 1924. BA. Reich 1507. number 442. 210; Baur, Die russische Kolonie in Munchen; 204, Norman Cohn. Warrant for Genocide The Myth of the Jewish World-Conspiracy and the -Protocols of the Elders of Zion, " (1981), 14 1.
26) PPS report to the AA from November 14. 1924. PAAA. 83584, 168. 170.- RUoO report from July 1927. RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 772. opis 1, delo 91, 5 1.
27) Georg Franz-Willing, Ursprung der Hitlerbewegung 1919-1922 (Preussisch Oldendorf K. W. Schiitz KG. 1974). 198.
28) DB report from July 23, 1920, RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 7, opis 1, delo 1255. reel 2. 209.
29) Remmer's testimony from June 1, 1923, BHSAM. BSMA 36, number 103009, 12. PBH/A11 report to the RUo0 from July 24. 1922, RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 772. opis 3. delo 71. 157. RUoO report from August 14, 1925, RGVA (TKhIDK),fond 772, opis 1. delo 105b. 99.
30) Letter from the organizers of the "Erster Weltkongress zum Schutze der Christlichen Nationen" to Ludwig Mullier von Hausen from April 26.192 1, RGVA (TKhIDK).fond 577. opis 2, delo 10. 7. PDM report to the BHSAM from December 12, 1923. BHSAM, BSMA 36. number 103472. 51.
31) BSMI report to the BSMA from March 22, 1924, BHSAM, BSMA 36, number 103472. 47; letter from Josef Gaal to NSDAP Headquarters from September 8, 1923 included in a PDM report to the BSMA from December 12, 1923, BHSAM. BSMA 36. number 103472, 5 1.
32) Biskupskii, subpoena from March 11, 1930, APA. BA, NS 43, number 35, 129, 131 ob. Letter from Weiss to Hitler from September 17, 1923, IZG. Fa 88. 30, PDM report from September 18, 1923. BSAM, PDM. number 6697,439.
In this series of lectures I will discuss a number of early influences on the rise of Hitler and the early Nazi party.
Hitler's Secret "Protocols" P.1
The Protocols of the Wise Elders of Zion, were not fabricated in Paris, but within Imperial Russia between April 1902 and August 1903. The earliest versions of the Protocols contain pronounced Ukrainian features, whereas later ones were given French overtones in order to lend them the appearance of credible accounts from abroad.
Secret "Protocols" P.2
General Vladimir Biskupskil, who went on to collaborate closely with Hitler in the context of the Aufbau Vereinigung in postwar Munich, played a leading role in the Ukrainian Volunteer Army. "Conservative revolutionaries" in Imperial Germany and Russia established detailed anti-Western, anti-Semitic ideologies in the months leading up to the Bolshevik Revolution. The largely internally-orientated voelkisch model focused on alleged Germanic racial and spiritual superiority through a heightened capacity to negate the will heroically, whereas the more externally- fixated Russian version offered apocalyptic visions of concrete political struggle between Russians at the head of all Slavs and perceived Jewish world-conspirators.
The Protocols did provide anti-Semitic arguments that strongly influenced the ideology of the National Socialist movement, going through 33 editions by the time Hitler came to power and becoming the most widely-distributed work in the world after the Bible. The National Socialist regime did not reprint the Protocols after the outbreak of World War II, though, perhaps precisely due to the Protocols' parallels with both brutal National Socialist occupation policies in Eastern Europe and public pacification efforts domestically.
Hitler’s Source P.2
Anticipating Tsarist pretender Kirill's arrival in Germany, General Ludendorff worked to establish an intelligence service for Kirill in early April 1922. He asked Walther Nicolai, who had served him as the head of the German Army High Command Intelligence Service during World War one, to use his considerable experience and connections to establish a reliable pro-Kirill intelligence service for the struggle against Bolshevism.
The German Kaiser's Confident P.1
By 1937 the NSDAP, the Wehrmacht, and, to a lesser extent, German society accepted Ludendorffs ideology. In the regime and the Wehrmacht he had tacit allies who helped to legitimize and propagate Deutsche Gotterkenntnis. Those who sympathized with him and his ideology existed at all levels of the Nazi hierarchy. Although today he may be forgotten, and although his memorial shrine in Tutzing may be neglected, Erich Ludendorff was one of the most important Germans of the twentieth century.
The German Kaiser's Confident P.2
The Ludendorffs (now Hohe Warte) advocated a return to traditional rural German culture since they believed that the demands of modem capitalist society had tom the German people from the soil, causing them to forget their heritage and ensuring their submission to finance and industrial capital. The Ludendorffs' ideology paralleled similar intellectual developments among Conservative Revolutionaries.
The Ideologists and First Financiers of Hitler P.1
Before the establishment of the “Aufbau” Vereinigung in late 1920, the collaboration between Eckart and Rosenberg in the context of Eckhart’s Newspaper In Plain German.” Formed the crux of the fusion between voelkisch-redemptive German and White Russian world conspiratonial-apocalyptic anti-Semitic thought, where "positive" notions of Germanic spiritual and racial superiority fused with more negative visions of impending "Jewish Bolshevik" destruction supported by Jewish finance capitalists.
The Ideologists and First Financiers of Hitler P.2
By 1923, Hitler had thoroughly internalized Aufbau’s and the people around it, assertions, of the nature of socialism and its most aggressive variant Bolshevism as mere tools of Jewish finance capitalism to enslave European peoples…
Dietrich Eckart, Rosenberg, and the White Russian Influence on
Nazi Ideology, P.1
The ensuing military conflagration, Eckart continued, had led to the destruction of Imperial Russia so that "Jewish Bolshevism" could take root there. He also warned that there would arise "from the Neva to the Rhine, on the bloody ruins of the previous national traditions, a single Jewish empire.
Dietrich Eckart, Rosenberg, and the White Russian Influence on
Nazi Ideology, P.2
Hitler in his unpublished 1928 sequel to Mein Kampf, further expounded upon the Aufbau/Eckartian theme of the "Jewish Bolshevik" annihilation of the leading elements of Russian society as a precedent for further Jewish atrocities. He argued that "Jewry exterminated the previous foreign upper strata with the help of Slavic racial instincts."
The "Final" Solution Before WWII, P.1
Hitler continued to express a view of history whereby Jews pitted Germans and Russians against each other after 1923. As witnessed in his unpublished 1928 sequel to Mein Kampf. He argued of "the Jew's" drive to dominate the European peoples that he -methodically agitates for world war" with the aim of "the destruction of inwardly anti-Semitic Russia as well as the destruction of the German Reich. which in administration and the army still offered resistance to the Jew."
The "Final" Solution Before WWII, P.2
That which Jewry once planned against Germany and all peoples of Europe. this must (Jewry) itself suffer today, and responsibility before the history of European culture demands that we do not carry out this fateful separation (Schicksalstrennung) with sentimentality and weakness, but with clear, rational awareness and firm determination.” (Rosenberg 1941 press release dealing with his public assumption of the position of State Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories.)
Early Nazis and the Mystical Connection P.1
Like the mystical inclined author Sergei Nilus, who had played a crucial role in popularizing The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Vinberg viewed Jews as a satanic force.
Early Nazis and the Mystical Connection P.2
Hitler asserted that "liberalism, our press, the stock market, and Freemasonry" together represented nothing but "Instrument[s] of the Jews."
Early Nazis and the Mystical Connection P.3
By the time of Ludendorfrs death, Deutsche Gotterkenninis had become for Nazis a legitimate Weltanschauung. Ludendorff's vision of a totalitarian society unified in the face of external and internal threats was nearly identical to the Weltanschauung of Nazism.