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Count Helmuth James von Moltke’s Memo to Hans Wilbrandt and Alexander Rüstow on Conditions in Germany and the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising (July 9, 1943)

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Foreign Workers.

The foreign workers in Germany represent the most serious problem of internal security. In most factories the percentage of foreign workers is already greater than that of the German personnel. This foreign labour is a hostile element, dissatisfied to a degree, and almost without exception communist by conviction and, it appears, guided by communist organizations. (German labour, on the other hand, seems hardly to show any communist tendencies.) The OKW realizes that in the case of a revolution the foreign workers will also have arms at their disposal, and that an armed [up]rising of this numerically powerful element might have serious, even decisive consequences.

The General Situation.

The Gestapo and SS are complete masters of the situation. Despite all symptoms of strong opposition there is nothing to indicate that in the near future internal difficulties might arise which would precipitate or give a chance for an [up]rising. The Wehrmacht is passing more and more into the service of the Party, which has shown great skill and psychological insight in winning over for its purposes the most influential generals by bestowing upon them huge estates and manors as tokens of "the nation's" admiration and gratitude for their military exploits. This procedure is designed to involve the Wehrmacht irretrievably in the Party's responsibilities, and make any change of front on the former's part impossible. The majority of the marshals, generals, and high officers thus honoured see things only as they want them to be for the sake of conserving their new wealth and influence. This makes them blind to certain self-evident facts; contrary to Allied suppositions, the major part of the officer corps of the OKW and the Wehrmacht generally, who are in a position to listen in on Allied broadcasts in safety, do not avail themselves of this possibility. They have acquired – and this applies to lower ranks also – a fullness of wealth, affluence, and personal power unheard of in the history of military castes, and opportunities for action of every kind such as professional soldiers dream of all their lives. This accounts for the fact that the Wehrmacht, with insignificant exceptions, backs up the Party and supports its strategy and policies. The number of clear-thinking men in the OKW and in the armed forces is small. This section is positive in its opinion that a total and unmitigated military defeat is necessary to destroy once and for all German Militarism and the myth of Germany's invincibility in the field, and to make Germany as a nation fit for a lasting peace.

Allied Broadcasts.

It must be pointed out that only reports of bare and unadorned facts have any effect upon German listeners, [with] every exaggeration or "talking down" jeopardizing the success of the entire propaganda effort. Even commentaries to the bare news bulletins should be abstained from, because in this way it is left to the people themselves to form their own judgment – a thing that has been consistently denied them by their own propaganda.

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