Source: New York Times, July 10, 1933
By ANNE O'HARE McCORMICK.
Wireless to The New York Times.
BERLIN, July 9. — There is at least one official voice in Europe that expresses understanding of the methods and motives of President Roosevelt. This voice is that of Germany, as represented by Chancellor Adolf Hitler. When asked in an interview what he thought of the messages of the President to the London Economic Conference, Herr Hitler replied:
"It is not for me to say yes or no on the policies of President Roosevelt. But I feel sure that whatever he has decided he has considered first tor the best interests and welfare of the people of the United States. That is as it should be.
Asks Same Consideration.
"All we ask," Herr Hitler went on, "is the same consideration. The time has come, I think, when the nations will have to learn to have mutual respect for one another's problems, and also for the methods and governmental and administrative procedures with which each must contrive to solve such problems."
"I find it strange," he said with a smile, "that our young State should receive gratuitous advice from the representatives of nations whose situation is so near catastrophe that their own troubles might be expected to engage all their attention."
The Chancellor sat at a low, round table in a modernistic room typical of the new Germany, of which he is the unquestioned master. It is a new room, newly furnished, in the new chancellery. Its beautifully panelled walls are bare. A big desk between tall windows is free of papers. Shelves are empty of books.
Behind this room is the Chancellor's office. Above, at the back of the same building, is a small, simple apartment in which he chooses to live rather than in the spacious house next door that was once occupied by Prince Bismarck.
Faster Than Mussolini.
Today, at the crest of the second wave of Germany's second revolution, Chancellor Hitler in four months has gone further than Premier Mussolini went in two years. He has been more revolutionary than the republic was in fourteen years. He has suppressed the last of the old parties, unified the Reich by subordinating all State governments to the central government, carried to the limit the "cleaning" process and in the last few days has been extending the "cleansing" to restive elements in his own party.
Now he faces the third and most difficult phase of his task. The energy and speed with which he cleared the ground of "obstacles" must immediately be applied to rebuilding the economic structure of the country. He is well aware that the test of his leadership lies ahead, in the success or failure of his economic program.
Chancellor Hitler had consented to discuss with this correspondent some of his plans for dealing with the heavy problem of unemployment. When asked if from now on he intended to concentrate on that problem his answer was instant and emphatic.
"Wholly!" he exclaimed fanatically. "I am thinking first of those in Germany who are in despair and who have been in despair for three years. Last week we reduced unemployment by 126,000. What does anything else matter? Who cares about these matters if only our aims are achieved?"
Appears Shy and Simple.
At first sight the dictator of Germany seems a rather shy and simple man, younger than one expects, more robust, taller. His sun-browned face is full and is the mobile face of an orator. A shock of straight hair falls over his forehead.
His eyes are almost the color of the blue larkspur in a vase behind him, curiously childlike and candid, not probing like Mussolini's but the turned inward eyes of a man intent on his own visions.
Herr Hitler has no mannerisms. He appears untired and unworried. His voice is as quiet as his black tie and his double-breasted black suit. In the country he has plastered with banners and insignia he wears only a small gold eagle in his buttonhole. No flag or swastika is in sight.
He begins to speak slowly and solemnly but when he smiles—and he smiled frequently in the course of the interview—and especially when he loses himself and forgets his listener in a flood of speech, it is easy to see how he sways multitudes. Then he talks like a man possessed, indubitably sincere.
"Well, you find me happy this morning because we have just signed a contract for a motor road which will go from Frankfurt to Darmstadt to Mannheim to Heidelberg and put thousands of men to work," was his greeting.
Public Works Are First.
"You ask me what we are going to do on the economic front," Herr Hitler began. "The first big step is the program of public works. But let us first see what are our problems and why we had to have the resolution to solve them. What was the situation when I was called to assume power?
"We had between six and seven million people without work. Our business organism was without confidence and without life. Our governmental machine was without authority. Our individual citizens were without regard for the interests of the State. Our professional and business organizations were full of egoism and isolated private aims.
"As for relief measures for such paralysis, first, business, to revive, must practice new methods, adopt new principles and develop a new mind. Germany, for instance, is still to be motorized. The automotive industry has been and is being reorganized to make cars that can be owned by persons with small incomes.
"The reason I admire Ford is not because he pioneered in standardizing production, but because he produces for the masses. That little car of his has done more than anything else to destroy class differences. You may envy the man who owns a better machine than yours, but you don't hate him."
The Chancellor referred to the survey being made of business and industry to discover immediately where and how many new workers can be placed and eventually to coordinate all economic sources. This inquiry, like others, has been carried out with such zeal that in two speeches last week Herr Hitler had to warn his followers not only against "senseless and vengeful denunciations," but against weakening the economic forces of the nation by hounding and bullying employers.
Cutting Governmental Red Tape.
"A second remedy," he continued, "is an entirely new mental attitude on the part of the government. We are cutting red tape drastically. We are plowing through the bureaucratic hierarchy that stifled us. We have to reduce the government's cost and its size.
"Thirdly, the nation has been put into a new relation both to business and government. The underlying idea is to do away with egoism and to lead the people into the sacred collective egoism which is the 'nation'.
Herr Hitler has the sensitive hand of the artist. He makes few gestures, and then only with his fingers. Now he tapped the table with his index finger.
"Parties were in the way of such a program," he explained. "They have disappeared. Parliament has obstructed my reforms. It has disappeared also. In Germany and elsewhere parliaments have proved themselves utterly incapable of dealing with the preposterous developments of the last ten years.
"Remember, I am prescribing only for Germany, not for the world, and no outside criticism will deflect me from the course I have mapped out. I admire Premier Mussolini because during many years he has carried out his plans regardless of ridicule and obstruction. I have sympathy with President Roosevelt because he marches straight toward his objective over Congress, over lobbies, over stubborn bureaucracies.
"Our turn has come for an economic overhauling, for new roads, subways, electric railways, the reclamation and decentralizing of industry and for new handicrafts."
Sees a Better Parliament.
Asked if, after four years or twenty years of dictatorship, he foresaw the resumption of parliamentary government in Germany, the Chancellor paused.
"Yes," he said finally, "but with a Parliament of another and better type, in which representation will be on a technical basis. Such a development is the Italian corporative State."
"What in the meantime will take the place of the Opposition?" he was asked.
"The principle of a single centralized authority must first be established," he replied, "then at all costs preserved. I myself assume absolute responsibility. If I fail, I will not retire to a villa in Switzerland.
"As each department head carries full responsibility for that department to guard against mistakes, it is to his interest to seek all kinds of expert advice and to listen to every criticism.
"Look at my schedule of appointments day in and day out, and you will see I receive suggestions, praise and objections, not only from friends and party members, but from all sorts of people. Seeking honest criticism is part of my duty."
Wishes Jews Would Leave.
"How about the Jews?" ventured the interviewer. "At this stage how do you measure the gains and losses of your anti-Semitic policies?"
The Chancellor straightened up in his low chair and focused his faraway eyes on the questioner. Then he shrugged and went on with his extraordinary fluency to berate the "fantastic" reports of the revolution that had been carried to completion, as he put it, "without breaking a window pane."
"As to the 'persecuted' Jews, whom you see peacefully walking in the streets and dining in all the best cafés in Berlin," he continued, "I would be only too glad if the nations which take such an enormous interest in Jews would open their gates to them.
"It is true we have made discriminatory laws, but they are directed not so much against the Jews as for the German people, to give equal economic opportunity to the majority.
"You say the Jews suffer, but so do millions of others. Why should not the Jews share the privations which burden the entire nation?
"You must remember our fight is not primarily against the Jews as such but against the Communists and all elements that demoralize and destroy us. When I proceed against a Communist, I do not ask if he is a Saxon or a Prussian. What I mean is that I cannot spare a Communist because he is a Jew."
Stresses Women's Support.
Seeing the second part of the question was not going to be answered, your correspondent referred to the position of women, also to be reduced to their proper place and proportion in the new scheme. Herr Hitler's tension relaxed. He smiled his disarming smile.
"Ah! Women!" he said. "Why, women always have been among my staunchest supporters. They feel that my victory is their victory. They know I serve their cause in working to redeem German youth, to create a social order, restore hope and health.
"The surplus of women is happily diminishing, and while our aims encourage women to marry and stay home, unmarried women are in free competition with men. Only military service, service on the bench and certain political posts are closed to women."
The last questions were personal.
"What character in history do you admire most, Caesar, Napoleon or Frederick the Great?"
The Chancellor shook his head.
"No, I admire Oliver Cromwell. I do not think the Commoner the greatest man that ever lived, but he saved England in a crisis similar to ours and saved it by obliterating Parliament and uniting the nation."
Got Vision When Wounded.
"And when did you first get the idea of the National Socialist movement?"
"In the greatest experience I ever lived through, the World War," the Chancellor answered swiftly. "I was wounded and lay in a lazarette blinded by French poison gas. I was blinded—and I saw."
"Was it a vision, then, an inspiration?*"
Herr Hitler nodded, remote. He sat silent for a moment, then rose, smiled cordially, kissed the interviewer's hand in the best German manner, turned and marched from the room with a light military step.