The Jews Are To Blame! [1]

[translation from the German by Allen Knechtmann]

by Joseph Goebbels
16 November 1941

The historical guilt of World Jewry for the outbreak and for the spread of this war is so sufficiently proved that we'll not waste any more words over it. The Jews wanted their war, and now they have it. But coming to pass is the prophecy of which the Führer spoke on 30 January 1939 in the German Reichstag, that if international finance Jewry should succeed in once again plunging the nations into a world war, the result will not be the bolshevizing of the Earth and the victory of Jewry, but rather the destruction of the Jewish race in Europe.

We are now experiencing the fulfillment of this prophecy, and it is being fulfilled so that Jewry is suffering a fate which is indeed hard but more than deserved. Sympathy or even regret is completely misplaced. In the instigation of this war World Jewry has falsely estimated the forces at its disposal, and it now is suffering a gradual process of destruction which would have been destined for us and indeed without a doubt would have been carried out against us if the Jews had had the power. They are now perishing according to their own law: "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth!"

In this historical critical analysis, every Jew is our enemy, without regard of whether he is vegetating in a Polish ghetto or still eking out a parasitic existence in Hamburg or blowing the trumpets of war in New York or in Washington. [2] All Jews on account of their birth and race belong to an international conspiracy against National Socialist Germany. They desire its defeat and destruction and do what is in their power to help it along. That they are finding limited possibilities in the Reich itself cannot be put down to the fact that they would be loyal here, but rather exclusively on the fact that we have taken appropriate measures against it happening.

One of these measures is the introduction of the yellow Jewish star which every Jew has to wear conspicuously. With that we want to recognize him externally, above all so that with the least attempt to violate the German national community he will be recognized as a Jew. This is an extraordinarily humane prescription, so to say a hygienic prophylactic which is supposed to prevent the Jew from sneaking unrecognized into our ranks in order to sow discord.

When the Jews, bedecked with their Jewish stars, a few weeks ago appeared in the Berlin city scene, the first impression among the citizens of the Reich capital was that of a big hoax. Only a very few knew that there were still so many Jews in Berlin. Everyone discovered in his vicinity or neighborhood a harmlessly behaving contemporary who indeed had turned out through occasional bleating or belly-aching to be a Jew, but had never been taken for one. He had thus obviously camouflaged himself, committed mimicry, adapted himself in his protective color to the milieu in which he was living and waited for his hour.

Who among us even had an idea that the enemy was standing right next to him, that he was a silently or cleverly straining listener at conversations on the street, in the subway, in the line at the cigarette stores? There are Jews which can hardly be distinguished externally. They have even accustomed themselves in this feeling, so far as it goes. These are the most dangerous. It is characteristic that every measure we take against the Jews appears very shortly in the English and American newspapers. The Jews therefore dispose even today of secret connections to hostile foreign countries and exploits these connections not only in particular matters but rather in all affairs of the Reich important to the conduct of the war. The enemy therefore is in our midst. What could be more obvious than that we make him externally recognizable for every citizen?

In the first days following the introduction of the Jewish star the sales of Berlin newspapers went through the roof. Every Jew who had to walk the streets busied himself with a newspaper in order to cover up shamefully his mark of Cain. When that was prohibited, one saw here and there Jews parading around the streets in western Berlin in the company of non-Jewish foreigners. These Jew lackeys really should have been entitled to their own Jewish star. The arguments which these people advance for their provocative behavior are always the same: the Jews are people -- as if we had maintained otherwise and the same likewise was not the case for murderous robbers, child molesters, thieves and pimps, without wanting to walk around with them on the Kurfürstendamm! -- this Jew is a respectable Jew -- every Jew affected had found himself a stupid and uninstinctive Goy who considered him respectable! -- he's been known for years -- as that were reason to give the Jew a kind of honor guard -- , and more which is pure insanity.

The Jews are seeing themselves gradually forced to fend for themselves and are now trying to employ a new trick. They still recognize the good-hearted German Michael [3] in us who is always gladly ready to forgive everything done to him for a few sentimental tears: suddenly one has the impression as if there are among the Berlin Jews only clean little babies, who should touch us in their childlike helplessness, or fragile old women. The Jews are sending forth their sympathy brigade. They might convince a few harmless minds, but not us. We know exactly where we stand with them.

We must win the war for their sake. If we lose it, these harmlessly behaving Jewish men of honor will suddenly transform themselves into ravenous wolves. They would fall upon our people, upon our women and children, to carry out a work of revenge for which there is no historical example. It has already been done in Bessarabia and in the Baltic States when Bolshevism made its entry; and there neither the peoples nor the regimes caused them any harm. There can be no more retreating in our battle against Jewry -- apart from the fact that we do not even want to do this. The Jews must be separated from the German national community, because they endanger our national unity.

That is an elementary requirement of folkish, national and social hygiene. They will never rest. They would, if they could, bring one nation after another into the war against us. What this means is the combined suffering of humanity if they force the world under their money and blood domination! The Jews are a parasitical race which attaches itself like a foul fungus on the cultures of healthy but instinctually weak peoples. There only one sure remedy: to cut them out and push them away.

How pathetic the stupid, thoughtlessly tear-jerking arguments of a few remaining Jew-lovers look before this world problem, which for millennia has preoccupied mankind! These Jew-lovers would probably open their eyes, noses and mouths if they could see just once their beloved Jews busying themselves in the possession of power. But then it would be too late. And therefore it is the duty of a national leadership to take measures with the suitable means at hand to prevent this from ever happening. There is a difference between men and men, just as there is a difference between animals and animals. We know good and bad people, just as we know good and bad animals. The fact that a Jew is still living amongst us is no proof that he belongs to us, just as the flea is not going to become a house pet.

If Herr Bramsig or Frau Knöterich, upon looking at an old woman who wears the Jewish star, feels a shower of sympathy, then may they most obligingly not forget that a distant nephew of this old woman by the name Nathan Kaufman is sitting in New York and has prepared a plan according to which the German population is to be sterilized within sixty years, and that the son of her distant uncle with the name Baruch or Morgenthau or Untermayer stands as a warmonger behind Mr. Roosevelt in order to push him into the war, and that if this is successful, under the circumstances a brave but unknowing American soldier shoots to death the only son of Herr Bramsig or Frau Knöterich, all for the greater honor of Jewry, to which this old woman also belongs, she may still be fragile and worthy of sympathy.

If we Germans in general display a fatal flaw in our national character, then it is the one of being all too forgetful. This flaw indeed speaks for our human decency and generosity, but not always for our political insight and prudence. We believe all people to be as good-natured as ourselves. The French threatened us in the Winter 1939/40 with the dismemberment of the Reich and with having to stand with our families before their steaming field kitchens to get a bit of warm food. Our armies overthrew France in six weeks and then one saw German soldiers along the country roads distributing bread and sausage to the starving French women and children and gasoline to the Paris refugees so that they could return as fast as possible to their capital in order to be able to display again, even at least in part, their agitation against the Reich.

Thus are we Germans. Our national virtue is our national flaw. We would not have it any other way and where our world-renowned Michael nature causes no serious damage, then there's nothing to be said about it. But already scrapping with others has rendered good advice not to be so upright; our enemies do not think nobly enough to see how beautiful our flaw is.

If anything this word fits our relations with the Jews. Here softness is not only weakness, but indeed dereliction of duty and a crime against state security on top of everything. Because the Jews are longing for the possibility of repaying our foolishness with blood and terror. May it never come to that. And one of the most effective measures against it is an inexorable, cold hardness against the despoilers of our people, against the instigators of this war, against its beneficiaries, if we lose it, and therefore of necessity against its victims if we win it.

At the risk of being superfluous, it should be stated:

1. The Jews are our ruin. They have started and spread this war. With it they mean to destroy the German Reich and its people. This plan must be wrecked.

2. There is no difference between Jews and Jews. Every Jew is a sworn enemy of the German people. If he does not show his hostility to us, it is only due to cowardice and cunning and not because he does not carry it in his heart.

3. Every German soldier who falls in the war goes into a guilt account of the Jews. It is their fault and they must therefore pay for it.

4. Whoever wears the Jewish star is to recognized as an enemy of our people. Whoever still has private dealings with him belongs to him and must be counted and treated as a Jew. He deserves the contempt of the entire people which he has cowardly and basely abandoned in its most difficult hour in order to stand at the side of its hater.

5. The Jews are enjoying the protection of hostile foreign states. No further proof is required for their ruinous role in our people.

6. The Jews are emissaries of the enemy amongst us. Whoever stands with them is a deserter in wartime.

7. The Jews have no right to give themselves airs of having the same rights amongst us. Wherever they desire to speak on the street, in the lines in front of the stores, on public transportation, they are to be silenced, not only because they fundamentally have no right, but because they are Jews and possess no voice in the community.

8. If the Jews come to you sentimentally, understand that that is a speculation on your forgetfulness; show them immediately that you see through them and treat them with contempt.

9. To the decent enemy our generosity is due after his defeat. But the Jew is no upright enemy; he is what he is.

10. The Jews are to be blamed for the war. They are suffering no injustice in the way we are treating them . They have more than deserved it.

Of being finished with them is the affair of the government. No one has the right to act on his own initiative, but everyone has the duty of appreciating fully the measures of the state against the Jews, of supporting these measures and of not being led astray in his clear understanding of the Jews' dangerousness by any of their tricks and evasions.

The security of the state demands this of all of us.



[1] It should be noted that in discussing the destruction of World Jewry, Goebbels is referring to the war in the Soviet Union, which in November 1941 appeared to be winding down as a complete German victory with the destruction of the Judeo-Bolshevik state and party apparatus. The reference in the first paragraph to the bolshevizing of the Earth is a reference to the surprise blow which the Bolsheviks had planned to unleash on Germany in July 1941, but which was pre-empted by the German preventive attack of 22 June. Furthermore, Goebbels' essay had been preceded ten days before its publication by an order issued by Josef Stalin that the German people were to be exterminated wherever found. (See Joachim Hoffmann's groundbreaking book, Stalin's War of Extermination for the details of this key order.) Given Goebbels' comments in this essay on Theodore Nathan Kaufman's book, which also advocated genocide against the Germans, it is likely that the German intelligence apparatus had become aware of Stalin's order. Naturally, Goebbels would have been loath to mention the Stalin order, because in so doing he would have compromised an intelligence source, and instead relied on a book which had been in print since 1940 to make his case to the German public. Taking into account the general tenor coming from both the Western plutocracies and the Soviet Union regarding the annihilation of the German people certainly would offer an insight into German decisions to commence deportations of Jews into the Government-General and the Soviet Union at the end of 1941, preparatory to their eventual expulsion from Europe. For this reason, Goebbels would have viewed Stalin's order of November 6, 1941, merely as additional proof of Judeo-Bolshevik methods, which had been long known to the National Socialists. But it must simultaneously be noted that there is no evidence in this speech that Goebbels intended any genocide against the Jews - an action which had been explicitly ruled out by Hitler earlier because such actions were not only un-German, but also were characteristic of Bolshevik behavior.

[2] Uncannily, but also unsurprisingly, World Jewry today is blowing from New York and Washington the trumpets of war against Islam. But this time, World Jewry has taken a direct hit to its chest in the destruction of the World Trade Center and the damaging of the Pentagon.

[3] The term "German Michael," a favorite of Goebbels', is a term stemming from the late eighteenth century, when Germany was at its nadir politically and culturally, and implies a generous but hopelessly naive fool who is only fit to be taken advantage of.

English translation copyright 2001 by James Allen Knechtmann. All rights reserved; no reproduction in part or in whole is permitted without prior written permission of the translator.

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