The essential identity of Soviet and Nazi ideologies and methods still seems poorly understood. Part of the reason, I suspect, is the meaningless distinction between totalitarian “right” and “left,” initially invented by the Moscow-ruled Comintern in the 1920s. Totalitarians of both sides cling to it religiously to this day to maintain the illusion that “they” are better than “the other they.”
In any case, herewith my translation of a few pages from professor Georg Stadtmüller’s 1980 booklet titled Sozialismus, Nationalsozialismus, Faschismus., which may elucidate the matter.
Within several months after Hitler had taken over power, he managed to get rid of the other political parties. Immediately after the Reichstag vote, the KPD [Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands or German Communist Party) was outlawed. On June 22, it was the turn of the SPD (Sozialistische Partei Deutschlands or German Socialist Party), even though the SPD had stressed its loyalty to the state despite its opposition to National Socialism.
After this, the remaining parties has dissolved themselves. The German National People’s Party (Deutschnationale Volkspartei) did so on June 27, The State Party (Staatspartei) and the Bavarian People’s Party (Bayerische Volkspartei) on June 28 and finally – as the very last one – the Center Party (Zentrumspartei) followed suit on July 5. With the passing of the Law Securing the Unity of Party and State on December 1, 1933, the NSDAP became the sole vector of political power.
As Hitler made clear…while implementing his strategy and tactics, the primary example before his mind’s eye was the impressively successful Bolshevik machinery of power. No Hitler without Professor Lenin! (emphasis mine)
The essential identities between Soviet socialism-communism and German National Socialism include:
- Violent removal of all other political parties and groups. One-party rule by a party that is controlled by an oligarchic leadership elite.
- Subjection of the state to the party. (“The Party commands the state.”)
- Reduction of the Parliament to a puppet body whose sole purpose was to acclaim the Party’s decisions.
- Dissolution of all separation of powers and principles of a state based on the rule of law. It is important to point out that both regimes took pains to avoid the terms “state based on the rule of law” and “rule of law” because they claimed to be the deliverers of the one, the true, the only genuine people’s democracy.
- Close collaboration between organs of terror and agitation.
- Political secret police without any legal oversight or limitation by the state (Soviet GPU and follow-on organizations, National Socialist Gestapo).
- Claim to the right to dictate a single viewpoint to the entire nation and, to that end, educate youth to become “the new persons” (Soviet Komsomol, Nazi Hitlerjugend).
- Violently hostile attitude toward Christian churches.
- Strict subjection of the economy to state guidelines (Soviet five-year plans, Nazi four-year plans).
In addition, the Nazis copied from the Soviets various symbols and expressions, for instance:
- the red flag (the sole difference was the swastika)
- First of May as a state holiday (first instituted in Germany by Hitler)
- the address “comrade” (Genosse, as in Volksgenosse, Parteigenosse)
- hammer and sword over the swastika as a symbol of the Strasser group. The hammer symbolized socialism, the sword nationalism.
It should be noted that not just Hitler, but Mussolini would probably have not gotten anywhere had he not initially graduated with honors from “Lenin University.”
I hope this helps anyone who still entertains the illusion that “left socialism” is somehow more acceptable than “right socialism.”
Nowadays, as various socialist “solutions” are being crammed down our throats, understanding that Hitler and Mussolini are an integral part of the socialist equation, and that it must be fought tooth and nail, is more important than ever.
Source: Stadtmueller, Georg. Sozialismus, Nationalsozialismus, Faschismus, pp. 24-26. Hanns-Seidel-Stiftung, 1980, Eichstaett.