A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

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A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby sfivdf21 » 3 months 6 hours ago (Wed Mar 24, 2021 2:01 pm)

Hello everyone, yesterday I saw a video of a youtuber that deals with the history of World War II in which he claimed that "the alleged 1930s German economic miracle was artificial", that it was based on the armamentistic industry and that far from ending the debt, Hitler's economic policies did increase it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfaSl8AnQQ4

As the video is in Spanish, what I am going to do is explain the WW2 youtuber's claims in this forum, I will try to be as brief as possible. With that said, let's get started: As he himself says in this video, the source in which he supports his affirmations is Adam Tooze's book, The Wages of Destruction: The Making And Breaking Of The Nazi Economy. Although he also says that we can find information similar to what he offers in this video with a simple search on the internet "in minimally serious sites" (although he does not mention which ones).

Then (from min. 1:08 to min. 1:21) he disqualifies as "conspiracy theorists" those who say that World War II was a war caused by international financial Jewry against Germany due to the successful economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted in his country.

Then from min. 1:45 says that in 1932 there were 5.600.000 million unemployed in Germany and although he admits that in the year 1938 unemployment was reduced almost entirely (according to him in 1933 there were 4.800.000 unemployed, in 1934 they were 2.700.000 unemployed, in 1935 they were 2.100.000 unemployed, in 1936 they were 1.600.000, in 1937 they were 900.000 unemployed and in 1938 they were 400.000 unemployed), he attributes this decrease in unemployment to the fact that Hitler's government took away German citizenship to the Jews, closed the businesses owned by the Jews and expelled from his jobs to all public servants who were Jewish, thus creating new job opportunities and because the Jews were deprived of German citizenship, 523.000 people (according to him that is the number of
Jews in Germany) were excluded from the numbers of unemployed. He also says that all women were excluded from the unemployment rates and that the Nationalsocialist leaders said that the role of German women should be to take care of homes and families and therefore work was
not their role (I suppose that this idiot will never have heard nothing about Hanna Reitsch or Leni Riefenstahl). He also says that another measure to reduce the number of unemployed was the establishment of the Reichsarbeitsdienst, where men between 18 and 25 years had to work 6 months for the state (according to him, working up to 74 hours per week). He says that RAD members were sent to work in work stations where they were fed free of charge. He also says that any man who received a job offer was obliged to accept it and that if he refused he could be sent by law to a concentration camp or to jail.

He also says that the main reason that led to the creation of jobs was the fact that the leaders of the Third Reich were preparing for a war (although he admits that the German people did not know the alleged warmonger intentions of their leaders) and therefore the armamentistic industry played the leading role in this whole affair. In the min. 3:30 says that the claims of the Nationalsocialist propaganda (both that directed at the German population and that directed to the foreign population) that the German economic miracle was due to the state's inversion in public buildings were lies and just an excuse for hiding the German military rearmament which, according to him, was being carried out in secret due to the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. He then insists in that the massive economic and labor growth in Germany during the Hitler era was due to massive state inversion in the armamentistic industry, heavy engineering, metallurgy, aeronautical industry, construction of fortifications,
rubber, mineral exploitation of low grade, etc. To "prove" this point he states that in 1932 in Germany there were 3200 workers assigned to the aeronautical industry and that in 1938 there were more than 246.000 workers just to produce military aircraft.

In the min. 4:26 detracts from the famous Reichsautobahn and says that at their peak it only generated 120.000 jobs and only 38.000 workers were employed on average (according to him the Nationalsocialist propaganda said that it would generate more than 600.000 jobs).

Although he later admits that many more public works were built apart from the Reichsautobahn during the Third Reich, he reiterates his position that the war industry was always the greatest economic and labor incentive.

In the min. 4:44 he shows a graph of the gold and currency reserves of Germany during the 1930s, in which according to it there were in July 1935 100 million, which according to him only covered the payment of imports for a week if the imports were minimal (that is, according to him Hitler banned almost all types of imports, which he says promoted employment in Germany). In other words, according to him, Germany had no money. But if Germany had no money, then how did Hitler promote public works and other necessities? He says he could print more money (although that could lead to higher inflation and more poverty). He then says that Hitler created the MEFO bonds, which according to him is a parallel currency invented by the state that did not submit to common economic laws, that is, he printed bonds instead of printing marks, thus avoiding any inflation.

He then mentions that the man in charge of printing the MEFO bonds was the Minister of the Economy of the Reich between 1934 and 1937, Hjalmar Schacht and says that he used the bonds in the following way: the State paid 50% of the total price to companies and companies with bonds. they were forced to create more jobs to get paid. He also says that the other 50% was a promissory note that was supposed to be paid
later. He says that this parallel currency boosted the economy of the whole of Germany but in an "artificial" way according to him.
According to him in theory all these bonds and promissory notes should have been paid in 1938, which he says never happened and that Schacht
when he realized that it was never intended to pay these bonds in 1938 (with the enormous economic crisis that this would cause) resigned from his position and then Hermann Göring assumed the post of the Minister of the Economy of the Reich until 1938.

He also says that all the public works that were built in the Third Reich were financed with MEFO bonds and that exactly the same happened with the industries.

He then he says in the min. 6:55 that in 1938 the German economy was on the verge of collapse and was close to bankruptcy and the Anschluss
(with the "appropriation" of the Austrian economy and resources) was what temporarily stabilized the German economy. To "prove" his point,
he puts in the min. 7:12 a quote from Adam Tooze's book that reads as follows:
Thank to the Austrian loot, in 1938 Germany could have
had a trade deficit of almost 450 million Reichsmarks, larger than at any time since 1929. In other words. Despite the appropriation of all the wealth of Austria, Germany, in 1938, had a deficit greater than that caused by the crisis of the "Crack of 1929".


In the min. 7:26 he acknowledges that Hitler's government created employment (although he says that many skilled professionals did manual labor), considerably improved living conditions for Germans, and that the German worker had paid vacations (although he says that it were very short). Yet he says that in order to control this "fictitious economy", Adolf Hitler set the prices, lowering them. To prove his point, he says that wages in Germany between 1933 and 1939 were lower (except for the year 1934) than they were in the year 1928.

He later says that German industry, especially the military industry, was growing more and more but that the population's consumer goods were not available to the majority of Germans.

He says that the average German worker in the Third Reich earned 35 Reichsmarks per week and that for example a good Watch cost 300 RM (ie the salary of 3 months of work).

According to him, when the start of the Second World War was approaching, the NSDAP authorities promoted access to consumer goods so that the German population was increasingly happy with their personal situation. For example, he calls the creation of the Volkswagen in 1934 (which cost RM 990 and with which the average German citizen could purchase and travel on modern German highways) as "a very propagandistic idea". He says that 336.000 people availed themselves of this generous funding from the Volkswagens but that none of these vehicles were delivered to these people. He then says that this project was economically unviable and that it was only carried out thanks to state financing with those MEFO bonds that were never paid.

He also says that the Reichsautobahn were not opened to cyclists until 1943 because they were almost empty and used mainly by the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS.

In the min. 9:38 says he shows a column about RM expenses and income in Germany between 1928 and 1939. According to data showing the year
in which the most was spent and entered, in 1938-39, the income was 17.7 billion RM but costs 32.9. In other words, according to the data
he shows, more than double what was entered was spent and his debt for 1939 was according to him, 41.7 billion RM. He says that Hitler created an economic bubble by incentivizing the German economy with bonds that he could not pay in order to finance the military industry
and win the support of the German people with the jobs generated. He also says that before the economic bubble burst, the Nationalsocialist
leaders knew that Germany would go to war and that the state would continue to finance all the debt that was to come during the war thus hiding the promising but false economy generated.

Then in the min. 10:56 he says that once the war started, the German economy would survive by requisitioning all the wealth of the occupied countries, even the gold of the civilian population.

Then he quotes an alleged phrase that Adolf Hitler would have said in a speech to his generals on August 22, 1939 in Berchtesgaden announcing that they would soon invade Poland and unleash a war, the Führer allegedly said:
We have nothing to lose, we have everything to gain. Our economic situation is such that we can only maintain it for a few more years. Göring can confirm that, we must act.


And finally he the video ends by saying the following, I translate his literal words:
Germany artificially improved its economy, creating an economic bubble that could only end up exploding and lead the country to a worse situation than it was in 1933. Germany created a castle of cards with which it promoted an artificial economic miracle, but it was only possible to do it and hide it by provoking a warlike conflict.


But the thing does not end here, I have been able to follow him on his Twitter, he has published several comments reiterating his position on the "artificial" Nationalsocialist economy. In this first tweet he posted a picture of the Führer with Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, daughter of Baroness Margrethe von Enden, sole heir to the Krupp empire and her husband in Essen, in the year 1940 to "prove" that the theory that Hitler was supposedly financed by the German aristocratic elites and the big businessmen: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1372512394547724290

This second tweet is a thread that he published as an introduction to his video in which he says that two-thirds of the entire German economy became related to rearmament, directly or indirectly, that the Reichsautobahn were low-traffic highways, that the real reason why Hitler ordered the invasion of Poland was due to the "bad situation" of the German economy and that Hermann Göring's four-year plan aimed to expand rearmament until 1940: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1371480400955072514

This third tweet is very interesting (please, pay special attention to it), it's a thread that he published in response to three quotes sent by a user that reveal that the Second World War was provoked against Germany and the real cause of it was the successful Nationalsocialist economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted (one of the menctioned quotes is the famous postwar quote of Winston Churchill in which he admits what was the real "crime" of Germany). The first quote that the answered and "debunked" was the one said by Carnelius Carl Veith in his book "Citadel of Chaos", the quote reads as follows:
The great bankers were alarmed by the successes of Hitler's financial policy, of the same So several generations ago their families were frightened by the natural economy of Lincoln and Napoleon.What would have been a laudable program of progress for Germany and other countries taking its example was, in reality, the main cause of World War II. The struggle between rival monetary policies was inevitable.


How did the "youtuber historian" answered to that quote? He said that Cornelius Veith published the book in 1949 and asks accusingly to the user that published that quote how Veith was able to get all that information out of a stone-by-stone guarded Germany, militarily occupied by the Allies and in ruins.

On the well-known phrase of Winston Churchill in his memoirs, he says that it's a false quote that Churchill never uttered and that it was invented in 2001 by a subject, converted to Islam, who accuses the Jews of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attack to dirty and slander the good name of Islam.

And finally, the third quote that he "debunks" is the one that Francis Neilson said in his book "The Churchill Legend", the quote reads as follows:
The two main causes of World War II were: First, the success of the system German barter. Second, Hitler's determination not to think of foreign loans. His declaration that Germany's business would be conducted in the same way as that of an honest merchant caused real panic in financial circles.


Well, the "youtuber historian" "debunks" the quote saying that Francis Neilson was an actor, playwright, theater director who had a brief political career and author of opera scripts who finally became a writer, writing this book at the age of 87. He immediately asks in an accusatory tone to the tweeter who posted to him these quotes that if Neilson has visited any national registry/archive to reach such conclusions.

That is all that this "Youtuber historian" says about the "artificial" German economic miracle of the 1930s. Although his statements seem very implausible to me and the typical propaganda to defame the Third Reich, I must admit that I don't know many of the things that it said on the subject (including Adam Tooze's book). Is there any truth in his statements about the Nationalsocialist economy?

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Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2021 11:38 am

Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby Kmut00 » 2 months 2 weeks ago (Thu Apr 08, 2021 3:28 pm)

sfivdf21 wrote:Hello everyone, yesterday I saw a video of a youtuber that deals with the history of World War II in which he claimed that "the alleged 1930s German economic miracle was artificial", that it was based on the armamentistic industry and that far from ending the debt, Hitler's economic policies did increase it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfaSl8AnQQ4

As the video is in Spanish, what I am going to do is explain the WW2 youtuber's claims in this forum, I will try to be as brief as possible. With that said, let's get started: As he himself says in this video, the source in which he supports his affirmations is Adam Tooze's book, The Wages of Destruction: The Making And Breaking Of The Nazi Economy. Although he also says that we can find information similar to what he offers in this video with a simple search on the internet "in minimally serious sites" (although he does not mention which ones).

Then (from min. 1:08 to min. 1:21) he disqualifies as "conspiracy theorists" those who say that World War II was a war caused by international financial Jewry against Germany due to the successful economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted in his country.

Then from min. 1:45 says that in 1932 there were 5.600.000 million unemployed in Germany and although he admits that in the year 1938 unemployment was reduced almost entirely (according to him in 1933 there were 4.800.000 unemployed, in 1934 they were 2.700.000 unemployed, in 1935 they were 2.100.000 unemployed, in 1936 they were 1.600.000, in 1937 they were 900.000 unemployed and in 1938 they were 400.000 unemployed), he attributes this decrease in unemployment to the fact that Hitler's government took away German citizenship to the Jews, closed the businesses owned by the Jews and expelled from his jobs to all public servants who were Jewish, thus creating new job opportunities and because the Jews were deprived of German citizenship, 523.000 people (according to him that is the number of
Jews in Germany) were excluded from the numbers of unemployed. He also says that all women were excluded from the unemployment rates and that the Nationalsocialist leaders said that the role of German women should be to take care of homes and families and therefore work was
not their role (I suppose that this idiot will never have heard nothing about Hanna Reitsch or Leni Riefenstahl). He also says that another measure to reduce the number of unemployed was the establishment of the Reichsarbeitsdienst, where men between 18 and 25 years had to work 6 months for the state (according to him, working up to 74 hours per week). He says that RAD members were sent to work in work stations where they were fed free of charge. He also says that any man who received a job offer was obliged to accept it and that if he refused he could be sent by law to a concentration camp or to jail.

He also says that the main reason that led to the creation of jobs was the fact that the leaders of the Third Reich were preparing for a war (although he admits that the German people did not know the alleged warmonger intentions of their leaders) and therefore the armamentistic industry played the leading role in this whole affair. In the min. 3:30 says that the claims of the Nationalsocialist propaganda (both that directed at the German population and that directed to the foreign population) that the German economic miracle was due to the state's inversion in public buildings were lies and just an excuse for hiding the German military rearmament which, according to him, was being carried out in secret due to the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. He then insists in that the massive economic and labor growth in Germany during the Hitler era was due to massive state inversion in the armamentistic industry, heavy engineering, metallurgy, aeronautical industry, construction of fortifications,
rubber, mineral exploitation of low grade, etc. To "prove" this point he states that in 1932 in Germany there were 3200 workers assigned to the aeronautical industry and that in 1938 there were more than 246.000 workers just to produce military aircraft.

In the min. 4:26 detracts from the famous Reichsautobahn and says that at their peak it only generated 120.000 jobs and only 38.000 workers were employed on average (according to him the Nationalsocialist propaganda said that it would generate more than 600.000 jobs).

Although he later admits that many more public works were built apart from the Reichsautobahn during the Third Reich, he reiterates his position that the war industry was always the greatest economic and labor incentive.

In the min. 4:44 he shows a graph of the gold and currency reserves of Germany during the 1930s, in which according to it there were in July 1935 100 million, which according to him only covered the payment of imports for a week if the imports were minimal (that is, according to him Hitler banned almost all types of imports, which he says promoted employment in Germany). In other words, according to him, Germany had no money. But if Germany had no money, then how did Hitler promote public works and other necessities? He says he could print more money (although that could lead to higher inflation and more poverty). He then says that Hitler created the MEFO bonds, which according to him is a parallel currency invented by the state that did not submit to common economic laws, that is, he printed bonds instead of printing marks, thus avoiding any inflation.

He then mentions that the man in charge of printing the MEFO bonds was the Minister of the Economy of the Reich between 1934 and 1937, Hjalmar Schacht and says that he used the bonds in the following way: the State paid 50% of the total price to companies and companies with bonds. they were forced to create more jobs to get paid. He also says that the other 50% was a promissory note that was supposed to be paid
later. He says that this parallel currency boosted the economy of the whole of Germany but in an "artificial" way according to him.
According to him in theory all these bonds and promissory notes should have been paid in 1938, which he says never happened and that Schacht
when he realized that it was never intended to pay these bonds in 1938 (with the enormous economic crisis that this would cause) resigned from his position and then Hermann Göring assumed the post of the Minister of the Economy of the Reich until 1938.

He also says that all the public works that were built in the Third Reich were financed with MEFO bonds and that exactly the same happened with the industries.

He then he says in the min. 6:55 that in 1938 the German economy was on the verge of collapse and was close to bankruptcy and the Anschluss
(with the "appropriation" of the Austrian economy and resources) was what temporarily stabilized the German economy. To "prove" his point,
he puts in the min. 7:12 a quote from Adam Tooze's book that reads as follows:
Thank to the Austrian loot, in 1938 Germany could have
had a trade deficit of almost 450 million Reichsmarks, larger than at any time since 1929. In other words. Despite the appropriation of all the wealth of Austria, Germany, in 1938, had a deficit greater than that caused by the crisis of the "Crack of 1929".


In the min. 7:26 he acknowledges that Hitler's government created employment (although he says that many skilled professionals did manual labor), considerably improved living conditions for Germans, and that the German worker had paid vacations (although he says that it were very short). Yet he says that in order to control this "fictitious economy", Adolf Hitler set the prices, lowering them. To prove his point, he says that wages in Germany between 1933 and 1939 were lower (except for the year 1934) than they were in the year 1928.

He later says that German industry, especially the military industry, was growing more and more but that the population's consumer goods were not available to the majority of Germans.

He says that the average German worker in the Third Reich earned 35 Reichsmarks per week and that for example a good Watch cost 300 RM (ie the salary of 3 months of work).

According to him, when the start of the Second World War was approaching, the NSDAP authorities promoted access to consumer goods so that the German population was increasingly happy with their personal situation. For example, he calls the creation of the Volkswagen in 1934 (which cost RM 990 and with which the average German citizen could purchase and travel on modern German highways) as "a very propagandistic idea". He says that 336.000 people availed themselves of this generous funding from the Volkswagens but that none of these vehicles were delivered to these people. He then says that this project was economically unviable and that it was only carried out thanks to state financing with those MEFO bonds that were never paid.

He also says that the Reichsautobahn were not opened to cyclists until 1943 because they were almost empty and used mainly by the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS.

In the min. 9:38 says he shows a column about RM expenses and income in Germany between 1928 and 1939. According to data showing the year
in which the most was spent and entered, in 1938-39, the income was 17.7 billion RM but costs 32.9. In other words, according to the data
he shows, more than double what was entered was spent and his debt for 1939 was according to him, 41.7 billion RM. He says that Hitler created an economic bubble by incentivizing the German economy with bonds that he could not pay in order to finance the military industry
and win the support of the German people with the jobs generated. He also says that before the economic bubble burst, the Nationalsocialist
leaders knew that Germany would go to war and that the state would continue to finance all the debt that was to come during the war thus hiding the promising but false economy generated.

Then in the min. 10:56 he says that once the war started, the German economy would survive by requisitioning all the wealth of the occupied countries, even the gold of the civilian population.

Then he quotes an alleged phrase that Adolf Hitler would have said in a speech to his generals on August 22, 1939 in Berchtesgaden announcing that they would soon invade Poland and unleash a war, the Führer allegedly said:
We have nothing to lose, we have everything to gain. Our economic situation is such that we can only maintain it for a few more years. Göring can confirm that, we must act.


And finally he the video ends by saying the following, I translate his literal words:
Germany artificially improved its economy, creating an economic bubble that could only end up exploding and lead the country to a worse situation than it was in 1933. Germany created a castle of cards with which it promoted an artificial economic miracle, but it was only possible to do it and hide it by provoking a warlike conflict.


But the thing does not end here, I have been able to follow him on his Twitter, he has published several comments reiterating his position on the "artificial" Nationalsocialist economy. In this first tweet he posted a picture of the Führer with Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, daughter of Baroness Margrethe von Enden, sole heir to the Krupp empire and her husband in Essen, in the year 1940 to "prove" that the theory that Hitler was supposedly financed by the German aristocratic elites and the big businessmen: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1372512394547724290

This second tweet is a thread that he published as an introduction to his video in which he says that two-thirds of the entire German economy became related to rearmament, directly or indirectly, that the Reichsautobahn were low-traffic highways, that the real reason why Hitler ordered the invasion of Poland was due to the "bad situation" of the German economy and that Hermann Göring's four-year plan aimed to expand rearmament until 1940: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1371480400955072514

This third tweet is very interesting (please, pay special attention to it), it's a thread that he published in response to three quotes sent by a user that reveal that the Second World War was provoked against Germany and the real cause of it was the successful Nationalsocialist economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted (one of the menctioned quotes is the famous postwar quote of Winston Churchill in which he admits what was the real "crime" of Germany). The first quote that the answered and "debunked" was the one said by Carnelius Carl Veith in his book "Citadel of Chaos", the quote reads as follows:
The great bankers were alarmed by the successes of Hitler's financial policy, of the same So several generations ago their families were frightened by the natural economy of Lincoln and Napoleon.What would have been a laudable program of progress for Germany and other countries taking its example was, in reality, the main cause of World War II. The struggle between rival monetary policies was inevitable.


How did the "youtuber historian" answered to that quote? He said that Cornelius Veith published the book in 1949 and asks accusingly to the user that published that quote how Veith was able to get all that information out of a stone-by-stone guarded Germany, militarily occupied by the Allies and in ruins.

On the well-known phrase of Winston Churchill in his memoirs, he says that it's a false quote that Churchill never uttered and that it was invented in 2001 by a subject, converted to Islam, who accuses the Jews of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attack to dirty and slander the good name of Islam.

And finally, the third quote that he "debunks" is the one that Francis Neilson said in his book "The Churchill Legend", the quote reads as follows:
The two main causes of World War II were: First, the success of the system German barter. Second, Hitler's determination not to think of foreign loans. His declaration that Germany's business would be conducted in the same way as that of an honest merchant caused real panic in financial circles.


Well, the "youtuber historian" "debunks" the quote saying that Francis Neilson was an actor, playwright, theater director who had a brief political career and author of opera scripts who finally became a writer, writing this book at the age of 87. He immediately asks in an accusatory tone to the tweeter who posted to him these quotes that if Neilson has visited any national registry/archive to reach such conclusions.

That is all that this "Youtuber historian" says about the "artificial" German economic miracle of the 1930s. Although his statements seem very implausible to me and the typical propaganda to defame the Third Reich, I must admit that I don't know many of the things that it said on the subject (including Adam Tooze's book). Is there any truth in his statements about the Nationalsocialist economy?


Hi, well I'm new to studying the World War II, Nazi Germany, and the Holocaust (that is, the issues discussed here), but I must say that the statements of this YouTuber who claims to be an "expert" in World War II they seem quite strange to me. I do not believe that the Nazi regime was "autarchic capitalist" (Hitler always opposed capitalism and according to him, Germany was waging a war against "international high finance"). It is an obvious fact that under Hitler Germany was a very prosperous country (until the Allied bombings and the advance of the war made the living conditions not only in Germany but throughout Europe drastically worse) but I am sorry that I cannot help you in the data that could refute or corroborate the Youtuber's claims, since I am not an economist and as I said at the beginning, I am new to the study of World War II, so surely you know more than I do about this topic, greetings.

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Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby HMSendeavour » 2 months 2 weeks ago (Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:38 am)

I'm not going to respond to all of this, at least not now.

Just an aside, I wouldn't recommended watching YouTube videos or documentaries. Read books, and if you can, examine primary sources. You don't necessarily need to read books cover to cover, that's why indexes exist.

The problem with videos is that you're dealing with another layer of interpretation, on top of whatever sources are cited - if any. The specialized and controversial nature of the topic can become mired in the biases of the video maker or "expert" historian. Writing books that will sell is also an industry, and people only provide what people will want to hear and what will guarantee the making of more money. Truth is not as highly prized as a good yarn, and billions of dollars.

Anyway. Tooze is clearly biased, but he's not wrong per se, I've stated before that I agree with Tooze regarding his overall idea that Hitler had no real reason to wait any longer in 1939, that it was Hitler's best option to gamble on a short war with Poland. The Polish attitude, so often ignored, bears this out - they simply weren't going to cooperate with Germany whatsoever and in fact as early as March 1939, they had stated quite plainly that any German attempt or plan to reincorporate Danzig back into the Reich would mean war:

I responded to Ambassador Lipski by stating that, in my personal opinion, the Polish position afforded no basis for a solution of the German-Polish contention. The only possible resolution thereof lay in the reunion of Danzig with the Reich, and the creation of extraterritorial railroad and motorway links, connecting the Reich to East Prussia. Herr Lipski retorted that his was the unpleasant duty to point out that any further pursuit of this particular German policy, especially pertaining to the restitution of Danzig to the Reich, meant war with Poland.

Joachim von Ribbentrop, in: Max Domarus, The Complete Hitler: Speeches and Proclamations 1932-1945 (Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1997), Pp. 1519. also see: Ian Kershaw, Hitler 1936-1945: Nemesis (Allen Lane, 2000), Pp. 177.


This mean't that the Germans and Poles were at an impasse very early on. Both sides didn't budge, and the Poles certainly didn't budge because they had British support, as Domarus notes:

Undoubtedly, all this was the fault of the British. Their support of Poland had emboldened the Polish statesmen to employ so provocative a language in the memorandum addressed to him. Here Hitler was right, since the Poles had reason to believe—based on Chamberlain’s comments on March 17—that Britain would answer the use of force by the German dictator with an unequivocal declaration of war.

Domarus, The Complete Hitler, p. 1519-1520.


This took place in late March 1939. Hitler's attitude was still very optimistic while the Poles were openly hostile and aggressive:

On March 25, he (Hitler) said he did not want to solve the Danzig question by force as this would drive Poland into the arms of Britain.

But there was to be no escape. Beck's instructions to Lipski left no way out. The German proposals were simply ignored. In their place, Beck offered a joint German-Polish guarantee of Danzig, and far- reaching concessions on transport across the Corridor. But before Lipski had even reached Berlin, reports of Polish mobilization, and the strengthening of the Polish garrison in the Corridor and at Gdynia, had reached Ribbentrop.

Donald Cameron Watt, How War Came: The Immediate Origins of the Second World War 1938-1939 (New York: Pantheon Books, 1989), Pp. 159.


Kershaw agrees:

On 25 March, Hitler still indicated that he did not want to solve the Danzig Question by force to avoid driving the Poles into the arms of the British. He had remarked to Goebbels the previous evening that he hoped the Poles would respond to pressure, 'but we must bite into the sour apple and guarantee Poland's borders'.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 177.


He even explicitly denies the idea that Hitler had intended to occupy Poland earlier that month:

Hitler's stance is not compatible with the post-war claim - on the basis of dubious evidence - that he had already decided upon the military occupation of Poland as early as 8 March, when he spoke to leaders of business, the Party, and the military.

Ibid., p. 893 note 129.


The Poles had mobilised for war that month:

On March 23 Marshal Smigly-Rydz issued military orders for the protection of frontiers in the east and in the west. About ten thousand reservists and a number of specialists were recalled to the colours so that the frontier units were at full strength. The following day Beck held a conference of the senior officials in the Polish Foreign Ministry. 96 He had already come to one decision. On March 22, he had sent instructions to the Polish Ambassador in London, Count Raczyriski, to propose a confidential bilateral agreement with the British.

Watt, op cit., p. 158. also see Rudolf von Ribbentrop, My Father Joachim von Ribbentrop: Hitler's Foreign Minister Experiences and Memories (Pen & Sword Military, 2019), Pp. 167.


Smigly-Rydz later spoke about this mobilisation, stating that it was not just posturing, but seriously intended for war:

Believe me, that the Polish mobilization was not merely a demonstration. We were ready for war.

Smigly-Rydz quote, see: Rudolf von Ribbentrop, op cit., p. 446 note 228.


This wasn't the last time the Poles did this either. They did so again on August 31st 1939, very clearly intending the war that resulted, except they expected to win. Meanwhile, Germany hadn't even considered a military confrontation until after March 29th, when the British and Poles signed their guarantee:

In Rhodes he (Goebbels) read that Chamberlain had guaranteed Poland against any aggression.*

* Except, it turned out, aggression by the Soviet Union; a secret addendum made this clear. It was Ian Colvin of the News Chronicle, whom Goebbels expelled a few days later, who tilted the balance to war by telling Chamberlain, untruthfully, on March 29 that Hitler had already drawn up plans to destroy Poland. However the contingency plan (Hitler’s Case white) was now activated as a result of the British guarantee.


David Irving, Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich (Focal Point Publications, London, 2012), Pp. 293.


Similarly, Gerd Shultze-Rhonhof writes:

the first official threat to wage war because of Danzig [...] was pronounced in March 1939 by the Polish Ambassador in Berlin, even before Hitler gave the command to the Wehrmacht's High Command to prepare for a war against Poland.

Gerd Schultze-Rhonhof, 1939 - The War that Had Many Fathers (Olzog Verlag, George F. Held English Translation, 2011), Pp. 12.


If you're perceptive, you can also see that Kershaw admits this too. He says that from this point on, Hitler took a "new aggressive stance" against Poland which can hardly be seen as unjustified:

The intransigence of the Poles over Danzig and the Corridor, their mobilization in March - in Hitler's eyes almost as big an affront as the Czech mobilization the previous May - and the alignment with Britain against Germany were given as reasons for the ending of the Polish pact. [...] Since the end of March, which had brought the British guarantee for Poland, followed soon afterwards by the announcement that there was to be a British-Polish mutual assistance treaty, Hitler had, in fact, given up on the Poles. The military directives of early April were recognition of this. The Poles, he acknowledged, were not going to concede to German demands without a fight. So they would have their fight. And they would be smashed. Only the timing and conditions remained to be determined.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 190.


This is an instance where the historian isn't wrong but is disingenuous.

With the appropriate context - such as that the Poles had seriously threated war and were never going to concede to any German proposals, no matter how moderate - Hitler's response is anything but unreasonably aggressive. but in fact the only logical response to a situation that was not going to be resolved peacefully due to the immense chasm that divided each party involved the conflict. All that could be done was to try and isolate Poland and neutralise any other potential adversary from getting involved, which Hitler certainly tried his best to do.

All of this is to say that I generally think Tooze is right, but I think, for some of the wrong reasons.

Tooze in fact explicitly denies the idea that Germany was facing some kind of economic crises that meant Hitler had to wage war:

The first point to emphasize is that Hitler knew by the summer of 1939 that his effort to develop a long-term programme of preparation for a war with the Western powers had failed. This, indeed, is one of the key findings of this book. Though, in 1938, Hitler's regime did attempt to respond to the growing resistance of the Western powers by embarking on a gigantic programme for 'full spectrum' rearmament and though Hitler and Ribbentrop did attempt to create a global alliance with the reach to match the emerging Western coalition, this attempt was frustrated. By the summer of 1939, German efforts to unite Italy and Japan into a triple threat against the British had manifestly failed. Furthermore, as this book shows for the first time in full detail, the German armaments economy in the summer of 1939 was being seriously squeezed by the persistent problems of the balance of payments. This is not to say that the Third Reich was facing an economic crisis. The combination of controls put in place in the course of the 1930s was undeniably effective in preventing the recurrence of a general crisis of the kind that had come close to destabilizing Hitler's regime in 1934. But in 1939 the precarious situation of the German balance of payments permitted no further acceleration of the armaments effort. Since Britain, France, the United States and the Soviet Union were all accelerating their rearmament at precisely this moment, Hitler found himself facing a sharp deterioration in the balance of forces at a date far earlier than he had expected.

Adam Tooze, The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy (Penguin Books, 2006), Pp. 661-662.


Contrary to the common implications made by those who claim Hitler wanted war, Tooze admits (as do pretty much all historians I can think of) that Hitler had no desire to come into conflict with the west, and in-fact wanted to ally with them. This brings up the awkward question of what kind of war Hitler wanted - one these people answer by way of broad statements simply declaring Hitler wanted a war. With Poland? Yes, by late 1939, but just because this is the case, doesn't mean there was any other choice. As we know, the Poles weren't going to budge, and the British were not inducing them to negotiate. The only options Hitler had was to fight or give up and lose the narrow window of opportunity in which Germany had military superiority. This makes the statement that Hitler "wanted war" much less compelling, because it's generally always implied that Hitler wanted the war that actually resulted, which couldn't be further from the truth. Hitler didn't expect the Second World War, nor did he want one. As he himself stated:

I would have to be an idiot to slide into a war on account of Poland like the incapable lot (die Unfähigen) of 1914.

Adolf Hitler, quoted in: Kershaw, op cit., p. 896 note 50.


Kershaw (and numerous others) also says the same thing:

Economic pressures did not force Hitler into war. They did not even determine the timing of the war. They were, as we have noted, an inexorable consequence of the political decisions in earlier years: the first, as soon
as Hitler had become Chancellor - naturally, with the enthusiastic backing of the armed forces - to make rearmament an absolute spending priority; the second, and even more crucial one, in 1936 to override the objections of those pressing for a return to a more balanced economy and revived involvement in international markets in favour of a striving for maximum autarky within an armaments-driven economy focused on war preparation. The mounting economic problems fed into the military and strategic pressures for expansion. But they did not bring about those pressures in the first place. And for Hitler, they merely confirmed his diagnosis that Germany's position could never be strengthened without territorial conquest.

Ibid., p. 162-163.


This idea of an economic crisis determining Hitler's "aggression" to start a war is the brain child of the Marxist historian Timothy W. Mason, who has been relentlessly criticised for this argument which hasn't stood the test of time it seems. For a refutation of this specific idea of economic pressures, you ought to read Richard Overy's article "Domestic Crisis and War in 1939"

On a final note. One can talk about how imperfect the economy of National Socialist Germany was. It certainly wasn't perfect, but how could we expect it to be? The Third Reich only existed for 12 years, 6 in peacetime, which is hardly long enough to make definitive statements regarding anything - particularly about the economy. The reality is that Hitler had certain goals that needed to be achieved, which meant that not everything could be achieved, let alone in 6 years. Hitler promised Germany greatness, he promised that Germany would be restored, and he stuck to his word and attempted against all odds to turn his promise into reality, even if it meant Germany had to sacrifice a certain standard of living. As Tooze points out:

As should be evident from the first half of this book, rearmament was the overriding and determining force impelling economic policy from the earliest stage. Everything else was sacrificed to it. In the six years between January 1933 and the autumn of the Munich crisis, Hitler's regime raised the share of national output going to the military from less than 1 to almost 20 per cent. Never before had national production been redistributed on this scale or with such speed by a capitalist state in peacetime. This extraordinary effort at redistribution was certainly eased by the simultaneous growth in German output. Putting to work 6 million unemployed provided for the needs of the Wehrmacht, whilst allowing consumption and civilian investment to be increased as well. But it is easy to forget, given its wealth today, that Germany in the 1930s was a generation away from affluence and that the majority of the population subsisted on a very modest standard of living. Rearmament came at a serious cost and this was made even more pressing by the often crippling constraints imposed by Germany's balance of payments. Already in 1934 the interests of both consumer goods industries and farmers were being sacrificed to rearmament. From 1935 in many German cities, butter and meat were surreptitiously rationed. From 1938 onwards, with military spending reaching wartime levels, the trade-off between consumption and armaments became truly severe. That Hitler's regime was able to impose this redistribution of resources betokens not inefficiency and disorganization, but a system that was highly effective in pursuit of its central objectives. Furthermore, it should lead us to question any interpretation of Hitler's regime based on the assumption that it lacked solid internal foundations. To reiterate, the Third Reich shifted more resources in peacetime into military uses than any other capitalist regime in history. And this advantage in terms of domestic resource mobilization continued to hold throughout the ensuing world war.

Tooze, op cit., p. 659-660.


German life was modest, but certainly not unliveable, or as decrepit as in the Soviet Union.

In 1937 German households achieved the standard of living enjoyed in 1928, before the onset of the Great Depression. Life remained modest. “Germans were used to spreading their rye bread with margarine and four-fruit jam rather than with butter and sausage,” reminds Frei; “in comparison with the English, French, and Americans they ate more simply, even in the ‘good’ years of the pre-war period, but always as much as they wanted.”

Peter Fritzsche, Life and Death in the Third Reich (The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2008), Pp. 58.


Germans preferred margarine over butter anyway if I recall correctly.

Anyway, the problem these historians have is that they operate within this very consumeristic and materialistic mindset. They're unable to fathom that a people would be willing to make personal sacrifices for the sake of a larger goal. In this case, for German greatness, which required rearmament. As we just read, Tooze certainly touches on this fact. The Germans were capable of bearing some hardship (which isn't always bad) for the sake of a better outcome. This stands in stark contrast in today's world, where people staying home due to COVID-19 was just too much of a challenge for some. Rather pitiful in comparison I'd say.

A reviewer of Lothrop Stoddard's book 'Into the Darkness' makes a very good point:

He (Stoddard) devotes a whole chapter to rationing, cataloging minute logistical details. Somehow this never manages to become tedious. The rationing is absolutely Spartan: one egg per month, everything rationed right down to thread and yarn, almost no edible fats and soap. The rationing cards have nothing to do with price; once it is determined how much meat, milk, cereals etc. the buyer is entitled to buy, they still have to pay for it. A modest bill of goods would take perhaps an hour to sort out due to the byzantine calculations on both sides of the transaction. One does not need to be told that this is not a society clamoring to reopen the economy for the good of the NASDAQ—but privation or no, it is nice to think that in some time and place people were not utterly ruled by their wallets. These people do not seem quite like us, and yet not in the way liberals would have us believe. Stoddard does not exactly paint a picture of rampant xenophobia:

Source: https://www.zerothposition.com/2020/09/07/colonize-bookshelf-part-iii/ | Archive: https://archive.ph/uiHct


Highlighted here is the relevant difference between National Socialism and the system under which we live today, which is largely based on the selfishness of the individual and an emphasis on money. Is it any wonder the historians today fail to appraise the Third Reich? No, because they do so from that lens which decrees that money is the god of men, and so is an ample supply of superfluous goods that do not enrich our lives in and of themselves.


It should also be noted that what was considered "rearmament" according to these historians is very very broad and sometimes ridiculous. For example, Shelly Baranowski claims that Germans being encouraged to buy goods that would improve their standard of living, like refrigerators, was a sinister attempt at "benefitting" rearmament:

If most Germans perceived that their material quality of life improved under Nazism, the distortion of the economy to benefit rearmament left them less well off than the British and French, and especially the Americans, despite increased in the production of consumer durables for the middle classes. Even the encouragement of some consumer goods, such as refrigerators and convenience foods, was to benefit rearmament. Refrigerators and new forms of packaging like foil and cellophane saved food, thus suppressing the demand for imports.

Shelly Baranowski, Strength Through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich (Cambridge University Press, 2004), Pp. 35-36.


There you have it, buying consumer goods is a "distortion of the economy" and therefore bad - only when "the Nazis" do it though. Anything they do that "normal" people would do is "bad" and some type of "distortion", "manipulation" or form of "exploitation" when in reality it's just banal, even if it does inadvertently serve the purpose claimed.

The problem here is clear, even when something is good, according to these hack historians, it's "bad" if in the context of Hitler's Germany. They're quite clearly partisans who are unwilling to view the Third Reich objectively, and present that time in any way that isn't in the form of an indictment. Trusting what they say is therefore hard to do.

This post was longer than I initially anticipated. There's probably more to say, but I'll save it for later if I can be bothered.
Now what does it mean for the independent expert witness Van Pelt? In his eyes he had two possibilities. Either to confirm the Holocaust story, or to go insane. - Germar Rudolf, 13th IHR Conference.

sfivdf21
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Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby sfivdf21 » 2 weeks 15 hours ago (Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:14 pm)

HMSendeavour wrote:I'm not going to respond to all of this, at least not now.

Just an aside, I wouldn't recommended watching YouTube videos or documentaries. Read books, and if you can, examine primary sources. You don't necessarily need to read books cover to cover, that's why indexes exist.

The problem with videos is that you're dealing with another layer of interpretation, on top of whatever sources are cited - if any. The specialized and controversial nature of the topic can become mired in the biases of the video maker or "expert" historian. Writing books that will sell is also an industry, and people only provide what people will want to hear and what will guarantee the making of more money. Truth is not as highly prized as a good yarn, and billions of dollars.

Anyway. Tooze is clearly biased, but he's not wrong per se, I've stated before that I agree with Tooze regarding his overall idea that Hitler had no real reason to wait any longer in 1939, that it was Hitler's best option to gamble on a short war with Poland. The Polish attitude, so often ignored, bears this out - they simply weren't going to cooperate with Germany whatsoever and in fact as early as March 1939, they had stated quite plainly that any German attempt or plan to reincorporate Danzig back into the Reich would mean war:

I responded to Ambassador Lipski by stating that, in my personal opinion, the Polish position afforded no basis for a solution of the German-Polish contention. The only possible resolution thereof lay in the reunion of Danzig with the Reich, and the creation of extraterritorial railroad and motorway links, connecting the Reich to East Prussia. Herr Lipski retorted that his was the unpleasant duty to point out that any further pursuit of this particular German policy, especially pertaining to the restitution of Danzig to the Reich, meant war with Poland.

Joachim von Ribbentrop, in: Max Domarus, The Complete Hitler: Speeches and Proclamations 1932-1945 (Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1997), Pp. 1519. also see: Ian Kershaw, Hitler 1936-1945: Nemesis (Allen Lane, 2000), Pp. 177.


This mean't that the Germans and Poles were at an impasse very early on. Both sides didn't budge, and the Poles certainly didn't budge because they had British support, as Domarus notes:

Undoubtedly, all this was the fault of the British. Their support of Poland had emboldened the Polish statesmen to employ so provocative a language in the memorandum addressed to him. Here Hitler was right, since the Poles had reason to believe—based on Chamberlain’s comments on March 17—that Britain would answer the use of force by the German dictator with an unequivocal declaration of war.

Domarus, The Complete Hitler, p. 1519-1520.


This took place in late March 1939. Hitler's attitude was still very optimistic while the Poles were openly hostile and aggressive:

On March 25, he (Hitler) said he did not want to solve the Danzig question by force as this would drive Poland into the arms of Britain.

But there was to be no escape. Beck's instructions to Lipski left no way out. The German proposals were simply ignored. In their place, Beck offered a joint German-Polish guarantee of Danzig, and far- reaching concessions on transport across the Corridor. But before Lipski had even reached Berlin, reports of Polish mobilization, and the strengthening of the Polish garrison in the Corridor and at Gdynia, had reached Ribbentrop.

Donald Cameron Watt, How War Came: The Immediate Origins of the Second World War 1938-1939 (New York: Pantheon Books, 1989), Pp. 159.


Kershaw agrees:

On 25 March, Hitler still indicated that he did not want to solve the Danzig Question by force to avoid driving the Poles into the arms of the British. He had remarked to Goebbels the previous evening that he hoped the Poles would respond to pressure, 'but we must bite into the sour apple and guarantee Poland's borders'.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 177.


He even explicitly denies the idea that Hitler had intended to occupy Poland earlier that month:

Hitler's stance is not compatible with the post-war claim - on the basis of dubious evidence - that he had already decided upon the military occupation of Poland as early as 8 March, when he spoke to leaders of business, the Party, and the military.

Ibid., p. 893 note 129.


The Poles had mobilised for war that month:

On March 23 Marshal Smigly-Rydz issued military orders for the protection of frontiers in the east and in the west. About ten thousand reservists and a number of specialists were recalled to the colours so that the frontier units were at full strength. The following day Beck held a conference of the senior officials in the Polish Foreign Ministry. 96 He had already come to one decision. On March 22, he had sent instructions to the Polish Ambassador in London, Count Raczyriski, to propose a confidential bilateral agreement with the British.

Watt, op cit., p. 158. also see Rudolf von Ribbentrop, My Father Joachim von Ribbentrop: Hitler's Foreign Minister Experiences and Memories (Pen & Sword Military, 2019), Pp. 167.


Smigly-Rydz later spoke about this mobilisation, stating that it was not just posturing, but seriously intended for war:

Believe me, that the Polish mobilization was not merely a demonstration. We were ready for war.

Smigly-Rydz quote, see: Rudolf von Ribbentrop, op cit., p. 446 note 228.


This wasn't the last time the Poles did this either. They did so again on August 31st 1939, very clearly intending the war that resulted, except they expected to win. Meanwhile, Germany hadn't even considered a military confrontation until after March 29th, when the British and Poles signed their guarantee:

In Rhodes he (Goebbels) read that Chamberlain had guaranteed Poland against any aggression.*

* Except, it turned out, aggression by the Soviet Union; a secret addendum made this clear. It was Ian Colvin of the News Chronicle, whom Goebbels expelled a few days later, who tilted the balance to war by telling Chamberlain, untruthfully, on March 29 that Hitler had already drawn up plans to destroy Poland. However the contingency plan (Hitler’s Case white) was now activated as a result of the British guarantee.


David Irving, Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich (Focal Point Publications, London, 2012), Pp. 293.


Similarly, Gerd Shultze-Rhonhof writes:

the first official threat to wage war because of Danzig [...] was pronounced in March 1939 by the Polish Ambassador in Berlin, even before Hitler gave the command to the Wehrmacht's High Command to prepare for a war against Poland.

Gerd Schultze-Rhonhof, 1939 - The War that Had Many Fathers (Olzog Verlag, George F. Held English Translation, 2011), Pp. 12.


If you're perceptive, you can also see that Kershaw admits this too. He says that from this point on, Hitler took a "new aggressive stance" against Poland which can hardly be seen as unjustified:

The intransigence of the Poles over Danzig and the Corridor, their mobilization in March - in Hitler's eyes almost as big an affront as the Czech mobilization the previous May - and the alignment with Britain against Germany were given as reasons for the ending of the Polish pact. [...] Since the end of March, which had brought the British guarantee for Poland, followed soon afterwards by the announcement that there was to be a British-Polish mutual assistance treaty, Hitler had, in fact, given up on the Poles. The military directives of early April were recognition of this. The Poles, he acknowledged, were not going to concede to German demands without a fight. So they would have their fight. And they would be smashed. Only the timing and conditions remained to be determined.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 190.


This is an instance where the historian isn't wrong but is disingenuous.

With the appropriate context - such as that the Poles had seriously threated war and were never going to concede to any German proposals, no matter how moderate - Hitler's response is anything but unreasonably aggressive. but in fact the only logical response to a situation that was not going to be resolved peacefully due to the immense chasm that divided each party involved the conflict. All that could be done was to try and isolate Poland and neutralise any other potential adversary from getting involved, which Hitler certainly tried his best to do.

All of this is to say that I generally think Tooze is right, but I think, for some of the wrong reasons.

Tooze in fact explicitly denies the idea that Germany was facing some kind of economic crises that meant Hitler had to wage war:

The first point to emphasize is that Hitler knew by the summer of 1939 that his effort to develop a long-term programme of preparation for a war with the Western powers had failed. This, indeed, is one of the key findings of this book. Though, in 1938, Hitler's regime did attempt to respond to the growing resistance of the Western powers by embarking on a gigantic programme for 'full spectrum' rearmament and though Hitler and Ribbentrop did attempt to create a global alliance with the reach to match the emerging Western coalition, this attempt was frustrated. By the summer of 1939, German efforts to unite Italy and Japan into a triple threat against the British had manifestly failed. Furthermore, as this book shows for the first time in full detail, the German armaments economy in the summer of 1939 was being seriously squeezed by the persistent problems of the balance of payments. This is not to say that the Third Reich was facing an economic crisis. The combination of controls put in place in the course of the 1930s was undeniably effective in preventing the recurrence of a general crisis of the kind that had come close to destabilizing Hitler's regime in 1934. But in 1939 the precarious situation of the German balance of payments permitted no further acceleration of the armaments effort. Since Britain, France, the United States and the Soviet Union were all accelerating their rearmament at precisely this moment, Hitler found himself facing a sharp deterioration in the balance of forces at a date far earlier than he had expected.

Adam Tooze, The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy (Penguin Books, 2006), Pp. 661-662.


Contrary to the common implications made by those who claim Hitler wanted war, Tooze admits (as do pretty much all historians I can think of) that Hitler had no desire to come into conflict with the west, and in-fact wanted to ally with them. This brings up the awkward question of what kind of war Hitler wanted - one these people answer by way of broad statements simply declaring Hitler wanted a war. With Poland? Yes, by late 1939, but just because this is the case, doesn't mean there was any other choice. As we know, the Poles weren't going to budge, and the British were not inducing them to negotiate. The only options Hitler had was to fight or give up and lose the narrow window of opportunity in which Germany had military superiority. This makes the statement that Hitler "wanted war" much less compelling, because it's generally always implied that Hitler wanted the war that actually resulted, which couldn't be further from the truth. Hitler didn't expect the Second World War, nor did he want one. As he himself stated:

I would have to be an idiot to slide into a war on account of Poland like the incapable lot (die Unfähigen) of 1914.

Adolf Hitler, quoted in: Kershaw, op cit., p. 896 note 50.


Kershaw (and numerous others) also says the same thing:

Economic pressures did not force Hitler into war. They did not even determine the timing of the war. They were, as we have noted, an inexorable consequence of the political decisions in earlier years: the first, as soon
as Hitler had become Chancellor - naturally, with the enthusiastic backing of the armed forces - to make rearmament an absolute spending priority; the second, and even more crucial one, in 1936 to override the objections of those pressing for a return to a more balanced economy and revived involvement in international markets in favour of a striving for maximum autarky within an armaments-driven economy focused on war preparation. The mounting economic problems fed into the military and strategic pressures for expansion. But they did not bring about those pressures in the first place. And for Hitler, they merely confirmed his diagnosis that Germany's position could never be strengthened without territorial conquest.

Ibid., p. 162-163.


This idea of an economic crisis determining Hitler's "aggression" to start a war is the brain child of the Marxist historian Timothy W. Mason, who has been relentlessly criticised for this argument which hasn't stood the test of time it seems. For a refutation of this specific idea of economic pressures, you ought to read Richard Overy's article "Domestic Crisis and War in 1939"

On a final note. One can talk about how imperfect the economy of National Socialist Germany was. It certainly wasn't perfect, but how could we expect it to be? The Third Reich only existed for 12 years, 6 in peacetime, which is hardly long enough to make definitive statements regarding anything - particularly about the economy. The reality is that Hitler had certain goals that needed to be achieved, which meant that not everything could be achieved, let alone in 6 years. Hitler promised Germany greatness, he promised that Germany would be restored, and he stuck to his word and attempted against all odds to turn his promise into reality, even if it meant Germany had to sacrifice a certain standard of living. As Tooze points out:

As should be evident from the first half of this book, rearmament was the overriding and determining force impelling economic policy from the earliest stage. Everything else was sacrificed to it. In the six years between January 1933 and the autumn of the Munich crisis, Hitler's regime raised the share of national output going to the military from less than 1 to almost 20 per cent. Never before had national production been redistributed on this scale or with such speed by a capitalist state in peacetime. This extraordinary effort at redistribution was certainly eased by the simultaneous growth in German output. Putting to work 6 million unemployed provided for the needs of the Wehrmacht, whilst allowing consumption and civilian investment to be increased as well. But it is easy to forget, given its wealth today, that Germany in the 1930s was a generation away from affluence and that the majority of the population subsisted on a very modest standard of living. Rearmament came at a serious cost and this was made even more pressing by the often crippling constraints imposed by Germany's balance of payments. Already in 1934 the interests of both consumer goods industries and farmers were being sacrificed to rearmament. From 1935 in many German cities, butter and meat were surreptitiously rationed. From 1938 onwards, with military spending reaching wartime levels, the trade-off between consumption and armaments became truly severe. That Hitler's regime was able to impose this redistribution of resources betokens not inefficiency and disorganization, but a system that was highly effective in pursuit of its central objectives. Furthermore, it should lead us to question any interpretation of Hitler's regime based on the assumption that it lacked solid internal foundations. To reiterate, the Third Reich shifted more resources in peacetime into military uses than any other capitalist regime in history. And this advantage in terms of domestic resource mobilization continued to hold throughout the ensuing world war.

Tooze, op cit., p. 659-660.


German life was modest, but certainly not unliveable, or as decrepit as in the Soviet Union.

In 1937 German households achieved the standard of living enjoyed in 1928, before the onset of the Great Depression. Life remained modest. “Germans were used to spreading their rye bread with margarine and four-fruit jam rather than with butter and sausage,” reminds Frei; “in comparison with the English, French, and Americans they ate more simply, even in the ‘good’ years of the pre-war period, but always as much as they wanted.”

Peter Fritzsche, Life and Death in the Third Reich (The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2008), Pp. 58.


Germans preferred margarine over butter anyway if I recall correctly.

Anyway, the problem these historians have is that they operate within this very consumeristic and materialistic mindset. They're unable to fathom that a people would be willing to make personal sacrifices for the sake of a larger goal. In this case, for German greatness, which required rearmament. As we just read, Tooze certainly touches on this fact. The Germans were capable of bearing some hardship (which isn't always bad) for the sake of a better outcome. This stands in stark contrast in today's world, where people staying home due to COVID-19 was just too much of a challenge for some. Rather pitiful in comparison I'd say.

A reviewer of Lothrop Stoddard's book 'Into the Darkness' makes a very good point:

He (Stoddard) devotes a whole chapter to rationing, cataloging minute logistical details. Somehow this never manages to become tedious. The rationing is absolutely Spartan: one egg per month, everything rationed right down to thread and yarn, almost no edible fats and soap. The rationing cards have nothing to do with price; once it is determined how much meat, milk, cereals etc. the buyer is entitled to buy, they still have to pay for it. A modest bill of goods would take perhaps an hour to sort out due to the byzantine calculations on both sides of the transaction. One does not need to be told that this is not a society clamoring to reopen the economy for the good of the NASDAQ—but privation or no, it is nice to think that in some time and place people were not utterly ruled by their wallets. These people do not seem quite like us, and yet not in the way liberals would have us believe. Stoddard does not exactly paint a picture of rampant xenophobia:

Source: https://www.zerothposition.com/2020/09/07/colonize-bookshelf-part-iii/ | Archive: https://archive.ph/uiHct


Highlighted here is the relevant difference between National Socialism and the system under which we live today, which is largely based on the selfishness of the individual and an emphasis on money. Is it any wonder the historians today fail to appraise the Third Reich? No, because they do so from that lens which decrees that money is the god of men, and so is an ample supply of superfluous goods that do not enrich our lives in and of themselves.


It should also be noted that what was considered "rearmament" according to these historians is very very broad and sometimes ridiculous. For example, Shelly Baranowski claims that Germans being encouraged to buy goods that would improve their standard of living, like refrigerators, was a sinister attempt at "benefitting" rearmament:

If most Germans perceived that their material quality of life improved under Nazism, the distortion of the economy to benefit rearmament left them less well off than the British and French, and especially the Americans, despite increased in the production of consumer durables for the middle classes. Even the encouragement of some consumer goods, such as refrigerators and convenience foods, was to benefit rearmament. Refrigerators and new forms of packaging like foil and cellophane saved food, thus suppressing the demand for imports.

Shelly Baranowski, Strength Through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich (Cambridge University Press, 2004), Pp. 35-36.


There you have it, buying consumer goods is a "distortion of the economy" and therefore bad - only when "the Nazis" do it though. Anything they do that "normal" people would do is "bad" and some type of "distortion", "manipulation" or form of "exploitation" when in reality it's just banal, even if it does inadvertently serve the purpose claimed.

The problem here is clear, even when something is good, according to these hack historians, it's "bad" if in the context of Hitler's Germany. They're quite clearly partisans who are unwilling to view the Third Reich objectively, and present that time in any way that isn't in the form of an indictment. Trusting what they say is therefore hard to do.

This post was longer than I initially anticipated. There's probably more to say, but I'll save it for later if I can be bothered.


Hello HMSendeavor, thank for your reply and information.

I know that YouTube videos are not viable and objective sources (it cannot be an objective sources, otherwise it would be censored, the content which is favorable to Nationalsocialism and Revisionism is totally banned in YouTube), I saw this video because a friend with who I debated about World War II sent it to me. I totally agree that in order to obtain objective information about the Third Reich, the Second World War and/or any other period in history, one must go to history books and especially to primary sources.

However, I asked to open a debate about the claims in this video because I had never heard about Tooze and his historical conclusions, so due to my knowledge about him I can neither corroborate nor debunk his claims (although due to his hackneyed bias anti-German/anti-Nationalsocialist many of his claims seem suspicious to me). I also did it because at that time I don't have the time or the resources to acquire that book and also because I know that I am not the user who has the most historical knowledge here and in this forum there are really very good users in terms of knowledge of the Second World War refers (such as Hannover, Lamprecht or yourself, which always provide many sources in your answers).

Tooze seems like a very contradictory "historian", on the one hand you say that he admits that there was no economic crisis in Germany in Hitler's time, but on the other hand Tooze claims (as quoted in the video) that there was an economic crisis in Hitler's time putting in the mouth of the Führer the following quote:
We have nothing to lose, we have everything to gain. Our economic situation is such that we can only maintain it for a few more years. Göring can confirm that, we must act.


Hitler allegedly would have said this on August 22, 1939 in a speech to the German military leadership in Berchtesgaden, however it seems strange to me that he contradicts himself so clearly, I am not aware that the Führer has ever uttered such quote. I don't know for sure, but I have the impression that this looks like a typical made in Nuremberg document forgery.

Totally agree, the slander and falsification of history that exists against the Nationalsocialist Germany is truly disgusting and those court pseudo-historians who conscientiously lie to pursue a Jewish-driven propaganda agenda are totally immoral, I am convinced that any honest and competent historian will agree with those words I just said. I am very bothered by the fact that you point out that even in his greatest successes and virtues these "historians" like Tooze or Kershaw try to make anything that has anything to do with Adolf Hitler (however good and positive it be) look "bad" and "evil".

It's true, there are still things to say in a topic so extensive as this, no problem, respond again and present more information and sources whenever you want, I hope there are more people who join to this thread, unfortunately the WWII Europe/Atlantic Theater Revisionist Forum is so very less active than the 'Holocaust' Debate Controversies/Comments/News Forum, thanks for the information.

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Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby sfivdf21 » 2 weeks 15 hours ago (Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:14 pm)

HMSendeavour wrote:I'm not going to respond to all of this, at least not now.

Just an aside, I wouldn't recommended watching YouTube videos or documentaries. Read books, and if you can, examine primary sources. You don't necessarily need to read books cover to cover, that's why indexes exist.

The problem with videos is that you're dealing with another layer of interpretation, on top of whatever sources are cited - if any. The specialized and controversial nature of the topic can become mired in the biases of the video maker or "expert" historian. Writing books that will sell is also an industry, and people only provide what people will want to hear and what will guarantee the making of more money. Truth is not as highly prized as a good yarn, and billions of dollars.

Anyway. Tooze is clearly biased, but he's not wrong per se, I've stated before that I agree with Tooze regarding his overall idea that Hitler had no real reason to wait any longer in 1939, that it was Hitler's best option to gamble on a short war with Poland. The Polish attitude, so often ignored, bears this out - they simply weren't going to cooperate with Germany whatsoever and in fact as early as March 1939, they had stated quite plainly that any German attempt or plan to reincorporate Danzig back into the Reich would mean war:

I responded to Ambassador Lipski by stating that, in my personal opinion, the Polish position afforded no basis for a solution of the German-Polish contention. The only possible resolution thereof lay in the reunion of Danzig with the Reich, and the creation of extraterritorial railroad and motorway links, connecting the Reich to East Prussia. Herr Lipski retorted that his was the unpleasant duty to point out that any further pursuit of this particular German policy, especially pertaining to the restitution of Danzig to the Reich, meant war with Poland.

Joachim von Ribbentrop, in: Max Domarus, The Complete Hitler: Speeches and Proclamations 1932-1945 (Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1997), Pp. 1519. also see: Ian Kershaw, Hitler 1936-1945: Nemesis (Allen Lane, 2000), Pp. 177.


This mean't that the Germans and Poles were at an impasse very early on. Both sides didn't budge, and the Poles certainly didn't budge because they had British support, as Domarus notes:

Undoubtedly, all this was the fault of the British. Their support of Poland had emboldened the Polish statesmen to employ so provocative a language in the memorandum addressed to him. Here Hitler was right, since the Poles had reason to believe—based on Chamberlain’s comments on March 17—that Britain would answer the use of force by the German dictator with an unequivocal declaration of war.

Domarus, The Complete Hitler, p. 1519-1520.


This took place in late March 1939. Hitler's attitude was still very optimistic while the Poles were openly hostile and aggressive:

On March 25, he (Hitler) said he did not want to solve the Danzig question by force as this would drive Poland into the arms of Britain.

But there was to be no escape. Beck's instructions to Lipski left no way out. The German proposals were simply ignored. In their place, Beck offered a joint German-Polish guarantee of Danzig, and far- reaching concessions on transport across the Corridor. But before Lipski had even reached Berlin, reports of Polish mobilization, and the strengthening of the Polish garrison in the Corridor and at Gdynia, had reached Ribbentrop.

Donald Cameron Watt, How War Came: The Immediate Origins of the Second World War 1938-1939 (New York: Pantheon Books, 1989), Pp. 159.


Kershaw agrees:

On 25 March, Hitler still indicated that he did not want to solve the Danzig Question by force to avoid driving the Poles into the arms of the British. He had remarked to Goebbels the previous evening that he hoped the Poles would respond to pressure, 'but we must bite into the sour apple and guarantee Poland's borders'.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 177.


He even explicitly denies the idea that Hitler had intended to occupy Poland earlier that month:

Hitler's stance is not compatible with the post-war claim - on the basis of dubious evidence - that he had already decided upon the military occupation of Poland as early as 8 March, when he spoke to leaders of business, the Party, and the military.

Ibid., p. 893 note 129.


The Poles had mobilised for war that month:

On March 23 Marshal Smigly-Rydz issued military orders for the protection of frontiers in the east and in the west. About ten thousand reservists and a number of specialists were recalled to the colours so that the frontier units were at full strength. The following day Beck held a conference of the senior officials in the Polish Foreign Ministry. 96 He had already come to one decision. On March 22, he had sent instructions to the Polish Ambassador in London, Count Raczyriski, to propose a confidential bilateral agreement with the British.

Watt, op cit., p. 158. also see Rudolf von Ribbentrop, My Father Joachim von Ribbentrop: Hitler's Foreign Minister Experiences and Memories (Pen & Sword Military, 2019), Pp. 167.


Smigly-Rydz later spoke about this mobilisation, stating that it was not just posturing, but seriously intended for war:

Believe me, that the Polish mobilization was not merely a demonstration. We were ready for war.

Smigly-Rydz quote, see: Rudolf von Ribbentrop, op cit., p. 446 note 228.


This wasn't the last time the Poles did this either. They did so again on August 31st 1939, very clearly intending the war that resulted, except they expected to win. Meanwhile, Germany hadn't even considered a military confrontation until after March 29th, when the British and Poles signed their guarantee:

In Rhodes he (Goebbels) read that Chamberlain had guaranteed Poland against any aggression.*

* Except, it turned out, aggression by the Soviet Union; a secret addendum made this clear. It was Ian Colvin of the News Chronicle, whom Goebbels expelled a few days later, who tilted the balance to war by telling Chamberlain, untruthfully, on March 29 that Hitler had already drawn up plans to destroy Poland. However the contingency plan (Hitler’s Case white) was now activated as a result of the British guarantee.


David Irving, Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich (Focal Point Publications, London, 2012), Pp. 293.


Similarly, Gerd Shultze-Rhonhof writes:

the first official threat to wage war because of Danzig [...] was pronounced in March 1939 by the Polish Ambassador in Berlin, even before Hitler gave the command to the Wehrmacht's High Command to prepare for a war against Poland.

Gerd Schultze-Rhonhof, 1939 - The War that Had Many Fathers (Olzog Verlag, George F. Held English Translation, 2011), Pp. 12.


If you're perceptive, you can also see that Kershaw admits this too. He says that from this point on, Hitler took a "new aggressive stance" against Poland which can hardly be seen as unjustified:

The intransigence of the Poles over Danzig and the Corridor, their mobilization in March - in Hitler's eyes almost as big an affront as the Czech mobilization the previous May - and the alignment with Britain against Germany were given as reasons for the ending of the Polish pact. [...] Since the end of March, which had brought the British guarantee for Poland, followed soon afterwards by the announcement that there was to be a British-Polish mutual assistance treaty, Hitler had, in fact, given up on the Poles. The military directives of early April were recognition of this. The Poles, he acknowledged, were not going to concede to German demands without a fight. So they would have their fight. And they would be smashed. Only the timing and conditions remained to be determined.

Kershaw, op cit., p. 190.


This is an instance where the historian isn't wrong but is disingenuous.

With the appropriate context - such as that the Poles had seriously threated war and were never going to concede to any German proposals, no matter how moderate - Hitler's response is anything but unreasonably aggressive. but in fact the only logical response to a situation that was not going to be resolved peacefully due to the immense chasm that divided each party involved the conflict. All that could be done was to try and isolate Poland and neutralise any other potential adversary from getting involved, which Hitler certainly tried his best to do.

All of this is to say that I generally think Tooze is right, but I think, for some of the wrong reasons.

Tooze in fact explicitly denies the idea that Germany was facing some kind of economic crises that meant Hitler had to wage war:

The first point to emphasize is that Hitler knew by the summer of 1939 that his effort to develop a long-term programme of preparation for a war with the Western powers had failed. This, indeed, is one of the key findings of this book. Though, in 1938, Hitler's regime did attempt to respond to the growing resistance of the Western powers by embarking on a gigantic programme for 'full spectrum' rearmament and though Hitler and Ribbentrop did attempt to create a global alliance with the reach to match the emerging Western coalition, this attempt was frustrated. By the summer of 1939, German efforts to unite Italy and Japan into a triple threat against the British had manifestly failed. Furthermore, as this book shows for the first time in full detail, the German armaments economy in the summer of 1939 was being seriously squeezed by the persistent problems of the balance of payments. This is not to say that the Third Reich was facing an economic crisis. The combination of controls put in place in the course of the 1930s was undeniably effective in preventing the recurrence of a general crisis of the kind that had come close to destabilizing Hitler's regime in 1934. But in 1939 the precarious situation of the German balance of payments permitted no further acceleration of the armaments effort. Since Britain, France, the United States and the Soviet Union were all accelerating their rearmament at precisely this moment, Hitler found himself facing a sharp deterioration in the balance of forces at a date far earlier than he had expected.

Adam Tooze, The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy (Penguin Books, 2006), Pp. 661-662.


Contrary to the common implications made by those who claim Hitler wanted war, Tooze admits (as do pretty much all historians I can think of) that Hitler had no desire to come into conflict with the west, and in-fact wanted to ally with them. This brings up the awkward question of what kind of war Hitler wanted - one these people answer by way of broad statements simply declaring Hitler wanted a war. With Poland? Yes, by late 1939, but just because this is the case, doesn't mean there was any other choice. As we know, the Poles weren't going to budge, and the British were not inducing them to negotiate. The only options Hitler had was to fight or give up and lose the narrow window of opportunity in which Germany had military superiority. This makes the statement that Hitler "wanted war" much less compelling, because it's generally always implied that Hitler wanted the war that actually resulted, which couldn't be further from the truth. Hitler didn't expect the Second World War, nor did he want one. As he himself stated:

I would have to be an idiot to slide into a war on account of Poland like the incapable lot (die Unfähigen) of 1914.

Adolf Hitler, quoted in: Kershaw, op cit., p. 896 note 50.


Kershaw (and numerous others) also says the same thing:

Economic pressures did not force Hitler into war. They did not even determine the timing of the war. They were, as we have noted, an inexorable consequence of the political decisions in earlier years: the first, as soon
as Hitler had become Chancellor - naturally, with the enthusiastic backing of the armed forces - to make rearmament an absolute spending priority; the second, and even more crucial one, in 1936 to override the objections of those pressing for a return to a more balanced economy and revived involvement in international markets in favour of a striving for maximum autarky within an armaments-driven economy focused on war preparation. The mounting economic problems fed into the military and strategic pressures for expansion. But they did not bring about those pressures in the first place. And for Hitler, they merely confirmed his diagnosis that Germany's position could never be strengthened without territorial conquest.

Ibid., p. 162-163.


This idea of an economic crisis determining Hitler's "aggression" to start a war is the brain child of the Marxist historian Timothy W. Mason, who has been relentlessly criticised for this argument which hasn't stood the test of time it seems. For a refutation of this specific idea of economic pressures, you ought to read Richard Overy's article "Domestic Crisis and War in 1939"

On a final note. One can talk about how imperfect the economy of National Socialist Germany was. It certainly wasn't perfect, but how could we expect it to be? The Third Reich only existed for 12 years, 6 in peacetime, which is hardly long enough to make definitive statements regarding anything - particularly about the economy. The reality is that Hitler had certain goals that needed to be achieved, which meant that not everything could be achieved, let alone in 6 years. Hitler promised Germany greatness, he promised that Germany would be restored, and he stuck to his word and attempted against all odds to turn his promise into reality, even if it meant Germany had to sacrifice a certain standard of living. As Tooze points out:

As should be evident from the first half of this book, rearmament was the overriding and determining force impelling economic policy from the earliest stage. Everything else was sacrificed to it. In the six years between January 1933 and the autumn of the Munich crisis, Hitler's regime raised the share of national output going to the military from less than 1 to almost 20 per cent. Never before had national production been redistributed on this scale or with such speed by a capitalist state in peacetime. This extraordinary effort at redistribution was certainly eased by the simultaneous growth in German output. Putting to work 6 million unemployed provided for the needs of the Wehrmacht, whilst allowing consumption and civilian investment to be increased as well. But it is easy to forget, given its wealth today, that Germany in the 1930s was a generation away from affluence and that the majority of the population subsisted on a very modest standard of living. Rearmament came at a serious cost and this was made even more pressing by the often crippling constraints imposed by Germany's balance of payments. Already in 1934 the interests of both consumer goods industries and farmers were being sacrificed to rearmament. From 1935 in many German cities, butter and meat were surreptitiously rationed. From 1938 onwards, with military spending reaching wartime levels, the trade-off between consumption and armaments became truly severe. That Hitler's regime was able to impose this redistribution of resources betokens not inefficiency and disorganization, but a system that was highly effective in pursuit of its central objectives. Furthermore, it should lead us to question any interpretation of Hitler's regime based on the assumption that it lacked solid internal foundations. To reiterate, the Third Reich shifted more resources in peacetime into military uses than any other capitalist regime in history. And this advantage in terms of domestic resource mobilization continued to hold throughout the ensuing world war.

Tooze, op cit., p. 659-660.


German life was modest, but certainly not unliveable, or as decrepit as in the Soviet Union.

In 1937 German households achieved the standard of living enjoyed in 1928, before the onset of the Great Depression. Life remained modest. “Germans were used to spreading their rye bread with margarine and four-fruit jam rather than with butter and sausage,” reminds Frei; “in comparison with the English, French, and Americans they ate more simply, even in the ‘good’ years of the pre-war period, but always as much as they wanted.”

Peter Fritzsche, Life and Death in the Third Reich (The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2008), Pp. 58.


Germans preferred margarine over butter anyway if I recall correctly.

Anyway, the problem these historians have is that they operate within this very consumeristic and materialistic mindset. They're unable to fathom that a people would be willing to make personal sacrifices for the sake of a larger goal. In this case, for German greatness, which required rearmament. As we just read, Tooze certainly touches on this fact. The Germans were capable of bearing some hardship (which isn't always bad) for the sake of a better outcome. This stands in stark contrast in today's world, where people staying home due to COVID-19 was just too much of a challenge for some. Rather pitiful in comparison I'd say.

A reviewer of Lothrop Stoddard's book 'Into the Darkness' makes a very good point:

He (Stoddard) devotes a whole chapter to rationing, cataloging minute logistical details. Somehow this never manages to become tedious. The rationing is absolutely Spartan: one egg per month, everything rationed right down to thread and yarn, almost no edible fats and soap. The rationing cards have nothing to do with price; once it is determined how much meat, milk, cereals etc. the buyer is entitled to buy, they still have to pay for it. A modest bill of goods would take perhaps an hour to sort out due to the byzantine calculations on both sides of the transaction. One does not need to be told that this is not a society clamoring to reopen the economy for the good of the NASDAQ—but privation or no, it is nice to think that in some time and place people were not utterly ruled by their wallets. These people do not seem quite like us, and yet not in the way liberals would have us believe. Stoddard does not exactly paint a picture of rampant xenophobia:

Source: https://www.zerothposition.com/2020/09/07/colonize-bookshelf-part-iii/ | Archive: https://archive.ph/uiHct


Highlighted here is the relevant difference between National Socialism and the system under which we live today, which is largely based on the selfishness of the individual and an emphasis on money. Is it any wonder the historians today fail to appraise the Third Reich? No, because they do so from that lens which decrees that money is the god of men, and so is an ample supply of superfluous goods that do not enrich our lives in and of themselves.


It should also be noted that what was considered "rearmament" according to these historians is very very broad and sometimes ridiculous. For example, Shelly Baranowski claims that Germans being encouraged to buy goods that would improve their standard of living, like refrigerators, was a sinister attempt at "benefitting" rearmament:

If most Germans perceived that their material quality of life improved under Nazism, the distortion of the economy to benefit rearmament left them less well off than the British and French, and especially the Americans, despite increased in the production of consumer durables for the middle classes. Even the encouragement of some consumer goods, such as refrigerators and convenience foods, was to benefit rearmament. Refrigerators and new forms of packaging like foil and cellophane saved food, thus suppressing the demand for imports.

Shelly Baranowski, Strength Through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich (Cambridge University Press, 2004), Pp. 35-36.


There you have it, buying consumer goods is a "distortion of the economy" and therefore bad - only when "the Nazis" do it though. Anything they do that "normal" people would do is "bad" and some type of "distortion", "manipulation" or form of "exploitation" when in reality it's just banal, even if it does inadvertently serve the purpose claimed.

The problem here is clear, even when something is good, according to these hack historians, it's "bad" if in the context of Hitler's Germany. They're quite clearly partisans who are unwilling to view the Third Reich objectively, and present that time in any way that isn't in the form of an indictment. Trusting what they say is therefore hard to do.

This post was longer than I initially anticipated. There's probably more to say, but I'll save it for later if I can be bothered.


Hello HMSendeavor, thank for your reply and information.

I know that YouTube videos are not viable and objective sources (it cannot be an objective sources, otherwise it would be censored, the content which is favorable to Nationalsocialism and Revisionism is totally banned in YouTube), I saw this video because a friend with who I debated about World War II sent it to me. I totally agree that in order to obtain objective information about the Third Reich, the Second World War and/or any other period in history, one must go to history books and especially to primary sources.

However, I asked to open a debate about the claims in this video because I had never heard about Tooze and his historical conclusions, so due to my knowledge about him I can neither corroborate nor debunk his claims (although due to his hackneyed bias anti-German/anti-Nationalsocialist many of his claims seem suspicious to me). I also did it because at that time I don't have the time or the resources to acquire that book and also because I know that I am not the user who has the most historical knowledge here and in this forum there are really very good users in terms of knowledge of the Second World War refers (such as Hannover, Lamprecht or yourself, which always provide many sources in your answers).

Tooze seems like a very contradictory "historian", on the one hand you say that he admits that there was no economic crisis in Germany in Hitler's time, but on the other hand Tooze claims (as quoted in the video) that there was an economic crisis in Hitler's time putting in the mouth of the Führer the following quote:
We have nothing to lose, we have everything to gain. Our economic situation is such that we can only maintain it for a few more years. Göring can confirm that, we must act.


Hitler allegedly would have said this on August 22, 1939 in a speech to the German military leadership in Berchtesgaden, however it seems strange to me that he contradicts himself so clearly, I am not aware that the Führer has ever uttered such quote. I don't know for sure, but I have the impression that this looks like a typical made in Nuremberg document forgery.

Totally agree, the slander and falsification of history that exists against the Nationalsocialist Germany is truly disgusting and those court pseudo-historians who conscientiously lie to pursue a Jewish-driven propaganda agenda are totally immoral, I am convinced that any honest and competent historian will agree with those words I just said. I am very bothered by the fact that you point out that even in his greatest successes and virtues these "historians" like Tooze or Kershaw try to make anything that has anything to do with Adolf Hitler (however good and positive it be) look "bad" and "evil".

It's true, there are still things to say in a topic so extensive as this, no problem, respond again and present more information and sources whenever you want, I hope there are more people who join to this thread, unfortunately the WWII Europe/Atlantic Theater Revisionist Forum is so very less active than the 'Holocaust' Debate Controversies/Comments/News Forum, thanks for the information.

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Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby sfivdf21 » 2 weeks 15 hours ago (Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:29 pm)

Kmut00 wrote:
sfivdf21 wrote:Hello everyone, yesterday I saw a video of a youtuber that deals with the history of World War II in which he claimed that "the alleged 1930s German economic miracle was artificial", that it was based on the armamentistic industry and that far from ending the debt, Hitler's economic policies did increase it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfaSl8AnQQ4

As the video is in Spanish, what I am going to do is explain the WW2 youtuber's claims in this forum, I will try to be as brief as possible. With that said, let's get started: As he himself says in this video, the source in which he supports his affirmations is Adam Tooze's book, The Wages of Destruction: The Making And Breaking Of The Nazi Economy. Although he also says that we can find information similar to what he offers in this video with a simple search on the internet "in minimally serious sites" (although he does not mention which ones).

Then (from min. 1:08 to min. 1:21) he disqualifies as "conspiracy theorists" those who say that World War II was a war caused by international financial Jewry against Germany due to the successful economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted in his country.

Then from min. 1:45 says that in 1932 there were 5.600.000 million unemployed in Germany and although he admits that in the year 1938 unemployment was reduced almost entirely (according to him in 1933 there were 4.800.000 unemployed, in 1934 they were 2.700.000 unemployed, in 1935 they were 2.100.000 unemployed, in 1936 they were 1.600.000, in 1937 they were 900.000 unemployed and in 1938 they were 400.000 unemployed), he attributes this decrease in unemployment to the fact that Hitler's government took away German citizenship to the Jews, closed the businesses owned by the Jews and expelled from his jobs to all public servants who were Jewish, thus creating new job opportunities and because the Jews were deprived of German citizenship, 523.000 people (according to him that is the number of
Jews in Germany) were excluded from the numbers of unemployed. He also says that all women were excluded from the unemployment rates and that the Nationalsocialist leaders said that the role of German women should be to take care of homes and families and therefore work was
not their role (I suppose that this idiot will never have heard nothing about Hanna Reitsch or Leni Riefenstahl). He also says that another measure to reduce the number of unemployed was the establishment of the Reichsarbeitsdienst, where men between 18 and 25 years had to work 6 months for the state (according to him, working up to 74 hours per week). He says that RAD members were sent to work in work stations where they were fed free of charge. He also says that any man who received a job offer was obliged to accept it and that if he refused he could be sent by law to a concentration camp or to jail.

He also says that the main reason that led to the creation of jobs was the fact that the leaders of the Third Reich were preparing for a war (although he admits that the German people did not know the alleged warmonger intentions of their leaders) and therefore the armamentistic industry played the leading role in this whole affair. In the min. 3:30 says that the claims of the Nationalsocialist propaganda (both that directed at the German population and that directed to the foreign population) that the German economic miracle was due to the state's inversion in public buildings were lies and just an excuse for hiding the German military rearmament which, according to him, was being carried out in secret due to the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. He then insists in that the massive economic and labor growth in Germany during the Hitler era was due to massive state inversion in the armamentistic industry, heavy engineering, metallurgy, aeronautical industry, construction of fortifications,
rubber, mineral exploitation of low grade, etc. To "prove" this point he states that in 1932 in Germany there were 3200 workers assigned to the aeronautical industry and that in 1938 there were more than 246.000 workers just to produce military aircraft.

In the min. 4:26 detracts from the famous Reichsautobahn and says that at their peak it only generated 120.000 jobs and only 38.000 workers were employed on average (according to him the Nationalsocialist propaganda said that it would generate more than 600.000 jobs).

Although he later admits that many more public works were built apart from the Reichsautobahn during the Third Reich, he reiterates his position that the war industry was always the greatest economic and labor incentive.

In the min. 4:44 he shows a graph of the gold and currency reserves of Germany during the 1930s, in which according to it there were in July 1935 100 million, which according to him only covered the payment of imports for a week if the imports were minimal (that is, according to him Hitler banned almost all types of imports, which he says promoted employment in Germany). In other words, according to him, Germany had no money. But if Germany had no money, then how did Hitler promote public works and other necessities? He says he could print more money (although that could lead to higher inflation and more poverty). He then says that Hitler created the MEFO bonds, which according to him is a parallel currency invented by the state that did not submit to common economic laws, that is, he printed bonds instead of printing marks, thus avoiding any inflation.

He then mentions that the man in charge of printing the MEFO bonds was the Minister of the Economy of the Reich between 1934 and 1937, Hjalmar Schacht and says that he used the bonds in the following way: the State paid 50% of the total price to companies and companies with bonds. they were forced to create more jobs to get paid. He also says that the other 50% was a promissory note that was supposed to be paid
later. He says that this parallel currency boosted the economy of the whole of Germany but in an "artificial" way according to him.
According to him in theory all these bonds and promissory notes should have been paid in 1938, which he says never happened and that Schacht
when he realized that it was never intended to pay these bonds in 1938 (with the enormous economic crisis that this would cause) resigned from his position and then Hermann Göring assumed the post of the Minister of the Economy of the Reich until 1938.

He also says that all the public works that were built in the Third Reich were financed with MEFO bonds and that exactly the same happened with the industries.

He then he says in the min. 6:55 that in 1938 the German economy was on the verge of collapse and was close to bankruptcy and the Anschluss
(with the "appropriation" of the Austrian economy and resources) was what temporarily stabilized the German economy. To "prove" his point,
he puts in the min. 7:12 a quote from Adam Tooze's book that reads as follows:
Thank to the Austrian loot, in 1938 Germany could have
had a trade deficit of almost 450 million Reichsmarks, larger than at any time since 1929. In other words. Despite the appropriation of all the wealth of Austria, Germany, in 1938, had a deficit greater than that caused by the crisis of the "Crack of 1929".


In the min. 7:26 he acknowledges that Hitler's government created employment (although he says that many skilled professionals did manual labor), considerably improved living conditions for Germans, and that the German worker had paid vacations (although he says that it were very short). Yet he says that in order to control this "fictitious economy", Adolf Hitler set the prices, lowering them. To prove his point, he says that wages in Germany between 1933 and 1939 were lower (except for the year 1934) than they were in the year 1928.

He later says that German industry, especially the military industry, was growing more and more but that the population's consumer goods were not available to the majority of Germans.

He says that the average German worker in the Third Reich earned 35 Reichsmarks per week and that for example a good Watch cost 300 RM (ie the salary of 3 months of work).

According to him, when the start of the Second World War was approaching, the NSDAP authorities promoted access to consumer goods so that the German population was increasingly happy with their personal situation. For example, he calls the creation of the Volkswagen in 1934 (which cost RM 990 and with which the average German citizen could purchase and travel on modern German highways) as "a very propagandistic idea". He says that 336.000 people availed themselves of this generous funding from the Volkswagens but that none of these vehicles were delivered to these people. He then says that this project was economically unviable and that it was only carried out thanks to state financing with those MEFO bonds that were never paid.

He also says that the Reichsautobahn were not opened to cyclists until 1943 because they were almost empty and used mainly by the Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS.

In the min. 9:38 says he shows a column about RM expenses and income in Germany between 1928 and 1939. According to data showing the year
in which the most was spent and entered, in 1938-39, the income was 17.7 billion RM but costs 32.9. In other words, according to the data
he shows, more than double what was entered was spent and his debt for 1939 was according to him, 41.7 billion RM. He says that Hitler created an economic bubble by incentivizing the German economy with bonds that he could not pay in order to finance the military industry
and win the support of the German people with the jobs generated. He also says that before the economic bubble burst, the Nationalsocialist
leaders knew that Germany would go to war and that the state would continue to finance all the debt that was to come during the war thus hiding the promising but false economy generated.

Then in the min. 10:56 he says that once the war started, the German economy would survive by requisitioning all the wealth of the occupied countries, even the gold of the civilian population.

Then he quotes an alleged phrase that Adolf Hitler would have said in a speech to his generals on August 22, 1939 in Berchtesgaden announcing that they would soon invade Poland and unleash a war, the Führer allegedly said:
We have nothing to lose, we have everything to gain. Our economic situation is such that we can only maintain it for a few more years. Göring can confirm that, we must act.


And finally he the video ends by saying the following, I translate his literal words:
Germany artificially improved its economy, creating an economic bubble that could only end up exploding and lead the country to a worse situation than it was in 1933. Germany created a castle of cards with which it promoted an artificial economic miracle, but it was only possible to do it and hide it by provoking a warlike conflict.


But the thing does not end here, I have been able to follow him on his Twitter, he has published several comments reiterating his position on the "artificial" Nationalsocialist economy. In this first tweet he posted a picture of the Führer with Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, daughter of Baroness Margrethe von Enden, sole heir to the Krupp empire and her husband in Essen, in the year 1940 to "prove" that the theory that Hitler was supposedly financed by the German aristocratic elites and the big businessmen: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1372512394547724290

This second tweet is a thread that he published as an introduction to his video in which he says that two-thirds of the entire German economy became related to rearmament, directly or indirectly, that the Reichsautobahn were low-traffic highways, that the real reason why Hitler ordered the invasion of Poland was due to the "bad situation" of the German economy and that Hermann Göring's four-year plan aimed to expand rearmament until 1940: https://twitter.com/Gmit_U/status/1371480400955072514

This third tweet is very interesting (please, pay special attention to it), it's a thread that he published in response to three quotes sent by a user that reveal that the Second World War was provoked against Germany and the real cause of it was the successful Nationalsocialist economic system that Adolf Hitler implanted (one of the menctioned quotes is the famous postwar quote of Winston Churchill in which he admits what was the real "crime" of Germany). The first quote that the answered and "debunked" was the one said by Carnelius Carl Veith in his book "Citadel of Chaos", the quote reads as follows:
The great bankers were alarmed by the successes of Hitler's financial policy, of the same So several generations ago their families were frightened by the natural economy of Lincoln and Napoleon.What would have been a laudable program of progress for Germany and other countries taking its example was, in reality, the main cause of World War II. The struggle between rival monetary policies was inevitable.


How did the "youtuber historian" answered to that quote? He said that Cornelius Veith published the book in 1949 and asks accusingly to the user that published that quote how Veith was able to get all that information out of a stone-by-stone guarded Germany, militarily occupied by the Allies and in ruins.

On the well-known phrase of Winston Churchill in his memoirs, he says that it's a false quote that Churchill never uttered and that it was invented in 2001 by a subject, converted to Islam, who accuses the Jews of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attack to dirty and slander the good name of Islam.

And finally, the third quote that he "debunks" is the one that Francis Neilson said in his book "The Churchill Legend", the quote reads as follows:
The two main causes of World War II were: First, the success of the system German barter. Second, Hitler's determination not to think of foreign loans. His declaration that Germany's business would be conducted in the same way as that of an honest merchant caused real panic in financial circles.


Well, the "youtuber historian" "debunks" the quote saying that Francis Neilson was an actor, playwright, theater director who had a brief political career and author of opera scripts who finally became a writer, writing this book at the age of 87. He immediately asks in an accusatory tone to the tweeter who posted to him these quotes that if Neilson has visited any national registry/archive to reach such conclusions.

That is all that this "Youtuber historian" says about the "artificial" German economic miracle of the 1930s. Although his statements seem very implausible to me and the typical propaganda to defame the Third Reich, I must admit that I don't know many of the things that it said on the subject (including Adam Tooze's book). Is there any truth in his statements about the Nationalsocialist economy?


Hi, well I'm new to studying the World War II, Nazi Germany, and the Holocaust (that is, the issues discussed here), but I must say that the statements of this YouTuber who claims to be an "expert" in World War II they seem quite strange to me. I do not believe that the Nazi regime was "autarchic capitalist" (Hitler always opposed capitalism and according to him, Germany was waging a war against "international high finance"). It is an obvious fact that under Hitler Germany was a very prosperous country (until the Allied bombings and the advance of the war made the living conditions not only in Germany but throughout Europe drastically worse) but I am sorry that I cannot help you in the data that could refute or corroborate the Youtuber's claims, since I am not an economist and as I said at the beginning, I am new to the study of World War II, so surely you know more than I do about this topic, greetings.


Hello Kmut00, thank you for your answer.

Certainly the claims of that Youtuber and Tooze also seem suspicious and doubtful to me. You are right in what you say that Germany was a very free and prosperous country durnig the time of Nationalsocialism, it's an obvious fact that in a very few years Adolf Hitler made Germany the first world power, the most advanced country in the world and eradicated the Poverty and Unemployment. It's a fact that the Third Reich has been the greatest and the best period in the history of Germany, specially during the glorious 6 years of peace (1933-1939), greetings.

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Re: A "WW2's History fan" Youtuber "debunks" the Hitler's 1930s economic miracle and says that it was "artificial"

Postby Moderator » 1 week 5 days ago (Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:21 am)

sfivdf21:
There is no reason to repeat others entire posts, it clutters the thread.
Thanks, M1.
Only lies need to be shielded from debate, truth welcomes it.


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