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Berlin bombed by British; Goering 'pep talk' halted

By Robert Dowson

LONDON -- Just as Marshal Hermann Goering was preparing to start his speech in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Nazi accession to power today British Mosquito planes bombed Berlin and caused confusion in the hall where he spoke.

The daring raid -- made at a time when Berlin's anti-air defenses probably were at full strength -- was a complete success. All British planes returned safely, it was said authoritatively.

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The sudden attack delayed Goering's address for an hour and three minutes and explained the confusion that came over the radio as the Marshal gave the German armed forces and home front a pep talk in the darkest hour of the war for the Reich.

It was the first daylight aerial attack on the Nazi capital.

There was an ironic twist to the fact that the British planes arrived precisely on the scheduled hour of Goering's address. Goering, as commander of the Reich Air Force, not only planned the blitz on Britain, but he assured the German home front early in the war that Berlin never would be bombed.

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After the British planes departed, Goering delivered a gloomy speech that was uninterrupted by applause throughout.

He commanded every man, woman and child of Germany's 80 million population to be prepared to die, if necessary, at the order of Adolf Hitler.

Bearing out the German insistence that Hitler would not make today the occasion for peace feelers, Goering said peace with Russia without victory was impossible -- but because Germany could deal only with "gentlemen -- not with Bolsheviks." He did not say it could not deal with its other enemies, Great Britain and the United States.

Hitler called God-sent

He declared that the word "capitulation does not exist in our language."

Goering explained Hitler's sacrifice of 220,000 men of the German Sixth Army at Stalingrad by saying they had to stay there to permit the German line to be "reorganized," that they had died for the world as well as for Germany -- and that other Germans must follow their example.

He said, as Hitler had done so often after the resurrection of successively "destroyed" Russian armies, that this would be the last hard winter, that Russia had thrown in the last of its reserves and that when they were gone she would be through.

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"Our world view (weltanschauung) includes the obligation for everyone to sacrifice everything, even his life, at any hour to the existence of his people," he said.

New chapter in history

"I appeal for remembrance of the day when the fate of the Reich was changed. It was then that the Fuehrer with his collaborators took the oath before President Hindenburg. This was not a simple ministerial oath, but it was given to the nation and the Reich from then onward, meaning a new chapter in the nation's history.

"The oath was designed to wipe out the terrible past, remedy the frightening present and bring about a great future.

"At that time millions of you felt the distress that was oppressing Germans, especially workers.

"It was the time when the German had to bow his head in shame because of what had happened 20 years after the World War.

"In the past nobody would have thought it possible that 10 years might bring about such a fundamental change.

"The German people, basically and deeply honest and brave, pay tribute to Hitler.

"Nobody can judge those being led without always thinking of the leader. This exemplifies the relations between the German people and their leader."

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Appeal made to youth

Earlier Max Axmann, Nazi youth leader, had called on German youth to support Hitler to the end.

"Hitler is the fulfillment of the German youth's dream," Axmann said. "Stand or fall for our Reich! The new Germany must prove his worth under the hardships of brutal war. This message German youth must send today to the Fuehrer, who remains in his solitude which commands respect."

It was reported here that Hitler was brooding at his Bavarian retreat with his astrologer in close attendance.

"National Socialist philosophy means that every individual is obliged to give everything, even his life, for the existence of the nation," Goering said.

Europe could not exist without a strong Germany, Goering continued. He referred to Bolshevism as an exploitation of the working people, and said the present war was a struggle of world views.

Victories come easily

"The German people began to believe that victories were a matter of course," Goering said after recalling Germany's early victories.

"At one time the German people began to think the war must be over soon, since we had won everywhere. No danger from Russia was anticipated. But Russia had built up during the last 15 years the most tremendous armed might ever built. It was done not with free men but with slaves. Nothing was produced any longer in Russia which could make life beautiful. Everything was standardized. The utmost misery was everywhere.

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"The entire industry of that tremendous country was directed toward one goal -- armaments.

"Europe's nations must recognize that once Germany breaks down, Bolshevism would not stop to recognize the sovereignty of Sweden or any other country, but would penetrate Europe entirely.

Fuehrer faced decision

"Russia tried to encircle Germany. Molotov (Russian foreign minister) gave us to understand that Russia and Germany could get along together if we overlooked a second attack on Finland. Also he wanted to make Rumania a Russian sphere of influence.

"My comrades, I now ask all of you to consider in what situation our Fuehrer was when he with his political genius recognized this deadly danger.

"Our Fuehrer knew that this would be the hardest of our struggles. And just because he knew Russia had such tremendous armaments ... he made that decision which was to settle the life or death of the West.

"History will always have to admit that June 22, 1941 (when Germany attacked Russia) was the day of the most tremendous, most significant historically, most daring and most admirable decision ever made by one strong soul/

"One victory followed another. ... With these victories, the difficulties of growing distances and supplies increased. Then came fate, and made the supreme test for our victorious people. Fate did not want us to get the final decision easily. ... The icy Russian winter blocked us.

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Some commanders weak

"Some commanders were weak. But again it was the Fuehrer who held the east front in spite of any weakling, and when the world thought the German armed forces had been vanquished Hitler initiated a new tremendous thrust last summer which again won one battle after another.

"Then came the day when our tanks for the first time penetrated the fortress of Stalingrad. Then came the second Russian winter. We had a tremendous arc of a front which needed every last man to hold.

"This enemy is hard. In its leadership it is barbarically hard. The execution of command is demanded in a form which means death if not carried. A Russian commissar would indicate on the map where a railroad had been destroyed by us and within a few hours everybody, civilians, old men, women, children would have to report for work. The commissar did not care who. He used the whip.

Claims huge red losses

"The Russians had lost a big proportion of their coal and iron. For this reason another gigantic effort is being made for the last time to reconquer the coal and iron deposits. But no longer men, but fatigued oldsters and 16-year-olds are recruited and behind them the number of machine guns is quadrupled and so they are chased to their death.

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"We now have a picture of Russian losses which will be announced at the proper moment. One gets a creeping feeling down one's back when one reads those figures. But the Russians continue, undernourished, badly dressed. Working of 10 1/2 and 12 hours mean nothing to the Russian command. (The German day is 12 hours).

"The Russian used every last opportunity. But I am convinced that this is his last effort. His last reserve is squeezed out ...

"It is true that the harshness of the struggle has grown to gigantic proportions ...

Bleeds but wins

"Germany fights, bleeds but wins."

Declaring that Britain is betraying Europe, Goering said"

"The Jew is leading over there guided by his hatred as in the Old testament. If the Jew could take vengeance on us what do you think would happen to our women, brides under their bestial hatred. It is better that we fight to achieve freedom and escape destruction.

"Hitler carried everything, without rest, has to decide everything ...

"Our ancestors had the right name for a man like Hitler: God sent. The situation can never be so bad for us that we should not have the strength to master it.

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People must suffer

"Similarly the people have to show as a whole their worth in time of crisis. How I suffer when I hear of women and children killed and property lost. But this, sad as it is, is unavoidable. There may be some who think: "But why do we get bombs again and again, here in the Ruhr, without reciprocating? Remember that we have a tremendous battle field in the north and south.

"But one day the fight in the east will reach the point where Bolshevism is broken and then I have promised you we will remember what has been done to us and then we shall take vengeance.

"Finally, I want to confess my indestructible faith in the German victory. I see before us the Fuehrer with his penetrating power and his genius. ... In 10 years, comrades, the Fuehrer has led us from greatness to greatness, out of poverty and terrible conditions. Now he is leading us to the greatest of all victories. We vow our devotion and faith to our Fuehrer. He asks it not for himself but for the German people.

"Sieg heil for the Fuehrer!"

Hitler extends power

Hitler opened the tenth anniversary of his accession to power by prolonging the term of the Nazi Reichstag until Jan. 30, 1947, and thus extending his own one-man rule for four years.

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It also was reported that Hitler had named Heinrich Himmler, chief of the German police, the most dreaded man in all Germany, general commissioner for total mobilization of resources.

Berlin announced that the obscure Austrian traitor Ernest Kaltenbrunner had been named chief of the secret state police.

Kaltenbrunner, 40, who helped betray Austria to Hitler while posing as a lawyer, had been police chief in Austria.

He succeeds the late Reinhardt Heydrich, who was liquidated by Czech patriots.

Meanwhile, Italy announced that starting May 1 women would be conscripted to replace men in many branches of work including railroad, street car and bus conductors, restaurants, cafes, bars, shops and movie theaters.

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