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Excerpts from Hitler’s Speech before the first "Greater German Reichstag" (January 30, 1939)

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The condition that would then occur can only be overcome in two ways:

1. Through the importation of additional foodstuffs, which would mean an increase in the export of German products, whereby one would have to consider that some of the raw materials necessary for the manufacture of these very products would have to be imported from abroad, so that only a fraction of the remaining profits would be available for the purchase of foodstuffs, or

2. The expansion of the living space of our Volk, in order to resolve the problem of feeding Germany within our domestic economy.

Since the second solution is not yet feasible on account of the persistent blindness of the one-time victorious powers [!], we are forced to deal with the first one, that is, we must export in order to be able to buy food; and second, since some of this export would require raw materials that we ourselves do not possess, we must export even more to secure these raw materials for our economy.

This necessity is certainly not a capitalistic one, as may be the case in other countries, but rather results from the direst need that can afflict a people, namely, concern for their daily bread.

And when foreign statesmen now threaten us with economic counter-measures of some kind or another, I can only assure them that this would initiate a desperate economic struggle in which we could easily hold our own. We could do so more easily than the satiated other nations, for the motive for our economic struggle would be a very simple one, namely: German people either live – that means, export – or die.

And I can assure all international skeptics, the German Volk will not die, most certainly not because of this, but it will live! If necessary, it will place all of the productive capacity of the new National Socialist community at the disposal of its leadership in order to enter into such a struggle and fight to the end. As far as the leadership is concerned, I can only assure you that it is determined to do whatever is necessary.

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