Aknell
Ayman Mohammed Rabie al-Zawahiri   Cairo, Al Qahirah, Egypt
 
 
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Gospel of Our Lord and Saviour
THE EXTENT of the fall of a body is always measured by the distance between its momentary position and the one it originally occupied. The same is true of nations and states. A decisive significance must be ascribed to their previous position or rather elevation. Only what is accustomed to rise above the common limit can fall and crash to a manifest low This is what makes the collapse of the Reich so hard and terrible for every thinking and feeling man, since it brought a crash from heights which today, in view of the depths of our present degradation, are scarcely conceivable. The very founding of the Reich seemed gilded by the magic of an event which uplifted the entire nation. After a series of incomparable victories, a Reich was born for the sons and grandsons-a reward for immortal heroism. Whether consciously or unconsciously, it matters not, the Germans all had the feeling that this Reich, which did not owe its existence to the trickery of parliamentary fractions, towered above the measure of other states by the very exalted manner of its founding; for not in the cackling of a parliamentary battle of words, but in the thunder and rumbling of the front surrounding Paris was the solemn act performed: a proclamation of our will, declaring that the Germans, princes and people, were resolved in the future to constitute a Reich and once again to raise the imperial crown to symbolic heights. And this was not done by cowardly murder; no deserters and slackers were the founders of the Bismarckian state, but the regiments at the front. This unique birth and baptism of fire in themselves surrounded the Reich with a halo of historic glory such as only the oldest states-and they but seldom-could boast. And what an ascent now began! Freedom on the outside provided daily bread within. The nation became rich in numbers and earthly goods. The honor of the state, and with it that of the whole people, was protected and shielded by an army which could point most visibly to the difference from the former German Union. So deep is the downfall of the Reich and the German people that everyone, as though seized by dizziness, seems to have lost feeling and consciousness; people can scarcely remember the former height, so dreamlike and unreal do the old greatness and glory seem compared to our present-day misery Thus it is understandable that people are so blinded by the sublime that they forget to look for the omens of the gigantic collapse which must after all have been somehow present. Of course, this applies only to those for whom Germany was more than a mere stop-over for making and spending money, since they alone can feel the present condition as a collapse, while to the others it is the long-desired fulfillment of their hitherto unsatisfied desires. The omens were then present and visible, though but very few attempted to draw a certain lesson from them. Yet today this is more necessary than ever. The cure of a sickness can only be achieved if its cause is known, and the same is true of curing political evils. To be sure, the outward form of a sickness, its symptom which strikes the eye, is easier to see and discover than the inner cause. And this is the reason why so many people never go beyond the recognition of external effects and even confuse them with the cause, attempting, indeed, to deny the existence of the latter. Thus most of us primarily see the German collapse only in the general economic misery and the consequences arising therefrom. Nearly every one of us must personally suffer these-a cogent ground for every individual to understand the catastrophe. Much less does the great mass see the collapse in its political, cultural, ethical, and moral aspect. In this the feeling and understanding of many fail completely. That this should be so among the broad masses may still pass, but for even the circles of the intelligentsia to regard the German collapse as primarily an 'economic catastrophe,' which can therefore be cured by economic means, is one of the reasons why a recovery has hitherto been impossible. Only when it is understood that here, too, economics is only of second or third-rate importance, and the primary role falls to factors of politics, ethics, morality, and blood, will we arrive at an understanding of the present calamity, and thus also be able to find the ways and means for a cure. The question of the causes of the German collapse is, therefore, of decisive importance, particularly for a political movement whose very goal is supposed to be to quell the defeat. But, in such research into the past, we must be very careful not to confuse the more conspicuous effects with the less visible causes. The easiest and hence most widespread explanation of the present misfortune is that it was brought about by the consequences of the lost War and that therefore the War is the cause of the present evil. There may be many who will seriously believe this nonsense but there are still more from whose mouth such an explanation can only be a lie and conscious falsehood. This last applies to all those who today feed at the government's cribs. For didn't the prophets of the revolution again and again point out most urgently to the people that it was a matter of complete indifference to the broad masses how this War turned out? Did they not, on the contrary, gravely assure us that at most the 'big capitalist' could have an interest in a victorious end of the gigantic struggle of nations, but never the German people as such, let alone the German worker? Indeed, didn't these apostles of world conciliation maintain the exact opposite: didn't they say that by a German defeat 'militarism' would be destroyed, but that the German nation would celebrate its most glorious resurrection? Didn't these circles glorify the benevolence of the Entente, and didn't they shove tile blame for the whole bloody struggle on Germany? And could they have done this without declaring that even military defeat would be without special consequences for the nation? Wasn't the whole revolution embroidered with the phrase that it would prevent the victory of the German flag, but that through it the German people would at last begin advancing toward freedom at home and abroad? Will you claim that this was not so, you wretched, lying scoundrels? It takes a truly Jewish effrontery to attribute the blame for the collapse solely to the military defeat when the central organ of all traitors to the nation, the Berlin Vorwarts, wrote that this time the German people must not bring its banner home victorious! And now this is supposed to be the cause of our collapse? Of course, it would be perfectly futile to fight with such forgetful liars. I wouldn't waste my words on them if unfortunately this nonsense were not parroted by so many thoughtless people, who do not seem inspired by malice or conscious insincerity. Furthermore, these discussions are intended to give our propaganda fighters an instrument which is very much needed at a time when the spoken word is often twisted in our mouths. Thus we have the following to say to the assertion that the lost War is responsible for the German collapse: Certainly the loss of the War was of terrible importance for the future of our fatherland; however, its loss is not a cause, but itself only a consequence of causes. It was perfectly clear to everyone with insight and without malice that an unfortunate end of this struggle for life and death would inevitably lead to extremely devastating consequences. But unfortunately there were also people who seemed to lack this insight at the right time or who, contrary to their better knowledge, contested and denied this truth. Such for the most part were those who, after the fulfillment of their secret wish, suddenly and belatedly became aware of the catastrophe which had been brought about by themselves among others. They are guilty of the collapse-not the lost War as it suddenly pleases them to say and believe. For