January 30, 1936
Men of the SA! National Socialists! Party Comrades!
When we take a retrospective look today, it does not end in the year 1933, but must go back further. What was a moment of surprise back then for many who did not know our Movement, was for us and for you, my Old Fighters, but the hour of fulfillment.
There were many, particularly outside Germany, who may have been amazed on January 30 and in the following weeks and months at the miracle which had taken place before their very eyes. Yet you, my comrades, and I had together awaited this hour for a decade, had believed in it and placed our hopes in it. For us, it was not a surprise but rather the culmination of fourteen years of hard fighting. We set forth not blind, but seeing and believing. And thus when I look back on that day I am gripped with a deep gratitude, gratitude to those who enabled me to experience this day three years ago. Today they are gathered here from throughout the German Reich as the pioneers and banner bearers of our Movement, the two eldest from each storm troop. They all experienced first-hand the evolution of our Movement, the evolution of its struggle, its fight and its conquests. And I myself stood over this fight for fourteen years. I conducted the fight for fourteen years; I also founded this SA and, in its ranks and at its fore, led the Movement onward for fourteen years. I have come to know you. And I know: everything you are, you are through me, and everything I am, I am through you alone.
The best core of the German nation already stood in our ranks that day. The best of our Volk had already chosen us that day. Only the petty doubters and the unreasonable were still standing to the side. But now these ranks have been markedly diminished. For what stands against us today is not standing against us because we are National Socialists, but because we have made Germany free and strong once again. Those are the enemies of our Volk in our own land whom we know from the time of the Great War, from the time of the regrettable revolt in 1918, and whom we know from the time of our worst decay. They are the only ones who not only do not want to find their way to us, but who will also never be able to find the way-and whom we ourselves can do without.
The Movement has given to the German Volk an element of oneness and unity which will long have an effect, far into the most distant future. Those who believe that this Movement is still bound today to a single person are mistaken.
I was its herald. And today from this one herald have come millions. If one of us draws his last breath today, he knows that after him come ten others! This Movement will fade no more. It will lead Germany on, and even if our enemies refuse to accept the fact, Germany will never again lapse into a state of that most sorry disgrace we were forced to endure.
And you, my oldest Party fighters, men of the SA and SS and political soldiers, are the guarantors of this being as it is. You are the guarantors that this spirit shall never die out. As you stand here, members of the entire German Volk, of all professions, all ranks, and all classes, from every confession, joined to form a whole, blind to all but this Germany and your service to it, there will grow forth from among you a young generation, inspired by the same spirit, seeing in you their model and following you.
Germany will not live through the times of November 1918 again. Let every man relinquish the hope that the wheels of world history could ever he turned back.
At the same time, just as we have always preached peace to our Volk at home, we want to be a peace-loving element among the other peoples. We cannot repeat that often enough. We seek peace because we love peace! But we stand up for honor because we have no desire to live without it.
Today we can proudly stand up before the world as Germans. For particularly in this last year of our regime, the German Volk has been given back its honor before the world. We are no longer defenseless Helots but have become free and self-assured ‘world citizens.’ It is with pride that we can allow these three years to pass before our mind’s eye. They constitute an obligation for the future as well. The coming years will not require less work. There are individuals who believe themselves capable of striking a blow at National Socialism in that they claim, ‘Yes, but all of that requires sacrifices.’ Yes, my worthy petits bourgeois, our fight has required constant sacrifice. But you did not go through that. Perhaps you imagine Germany has become what it is today because you did not make any sacrifices.
No! It is because we were able to make sacrifices and wanted to do so that this Germany came to be! So if someone tells us, ‘That means the future will require sacrifices, too,’ we say ‘Quite right!’ National Socialism is not a doctrine of lethargy, but a doctrine of fighting.
Not a doctrine of good fortune, of coincidence, but a doctrine of work, a doctrine of struggle, and thus also a doctrine of sacrifices. That is how we did things before the fight, and in these past three years this has not changed, and it will remain so in the future!
Only one thing matters: for millenniums our Volk has had to make sacrifices for its chosen path in life and its life-struggle. It has been given nothing, but only too often the sacrifices have been for naught. Today the Movement can give the German Volk this guarantee: whatever sacrifices you, German Volk, make, will no longer be in vain; rather, these sacrifices will always win you a new life.
And I would like to ask you to join me once again in uttering the battle cry for what means most to us in this world, for which we once fought and struggled and triumphed, which we did not forget in the time of defeat, which we loved in the time of need, which we adored in the time of disgrace, and which is sacred and dear to us now in the time of victories.
Our German Reich, our German Volk, and our one and only National Socialist Movement:
Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil!