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Martin Bormann’s Note on "Safeguarding the Future of the German People" (January 29, 1944)

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7. There is no point in relying on state regulations alone in this delicate area. The only thing which can convince people is a very serious campaign by the movement. This issue is too important for stupid jokes. It really is a matter of securing the future of our people.

8. After this war we cannot order all women and girls to have children. The most sensitive—and here the over-used superlative is appropriate—education is required.

[ . . . ]

12. [ . . . ] At first many women will accept the general principle but – a lack of logic is after all innate in women – reject it in the personal circumstances of their particular case.

13. For obvious reasons, public, i.e. general education can only begin after the war. Let me just give one reason for this. We cannot now call on the women whose husbands will probably still get killed and we cannot begin the education campaign out of consideration for our soldiers because, beforehand, we would have to get our men who are now soldiers used to these ideas: not every soldier will necessarily want his wife or fiancée to have children by another man after he has been killed.

[ . . . ]

15. Right now we must remove all undesirable barriers to our goal. In particular, we must involve our poets and writers. New novels, stories, and plays which equate 'marriage drama' with 'adultery' will no longer be permitted. Nor will poems, writings or films which treat illegitimate children as inferior.

16. Now the 'dislike' of illegitimate children undoubtedly has a reason which we too—or rather we in particular—must acknowledge. We too do not want our sisters or daughters irresponsibly to have children by some man or other or from more than one man. We must, therefore, desire that, after this war, our nation's women who cannot get married in the traditional way can join up with a man who really suits them and have children by him.

If I consider carefully how in animal breeding only those animals who suit each other are paired, then I have to observe that the rules which are valid for all mammals also apply to humans. If I want children who have a balanced character and are not inwardly torn then I must state the view that only people who are really suited to each other should have children with each other. We cannot want a woman to have children from any old man even if it is done through so-called long distance procreation [?! Fernzeugung]. Rather only people who are really fond of each other should have children.

17. The upshot of all this is: we must hope that women who after the war do not have or get a husband will have a relationship with a man similar to marriage which produces as many children as possible. The fact that such relationships will not last a lifetime is not an argument against them but is natural. Many marriages too end in divorce after a longer or shorter period. Moreover, I believe that two people who are bound together in friendship but do not see each other so often can stay together for a whole lifetime more easily than others and even more so if children strengthen the love and friendship of this bond.

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