As I read this book, I kept thinking about another book I reviewed a couple of years ago called Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning. If you haven’t read it, I would recommend it to you only if you aren’t afraid of being subjected to the absolute worst of what it means to be a member of the human race; and only if you aren’t afraid of being subjected to knowledge about the evil that ordinary people are capable of perpetrating on other human beings. Mein Kampf lays the groundwork for the ideology that made that all possible.
Before Hitler rose to power in Germany, he put all of his cards on the table in his famous work, Mein Kampf. The book, which was an attempt by Hitler to fuse his own versions of history, philosophy, politics, military strategy, and autobiography all in one book, was published about eight years before he took power.
I took a few notes that interested me about Hitler’s mindset as he laid it out in Mein Kampf.
I’ve heard it stated before that Hitler was an atheist. I can understand why someone would want to believe this. It can be disappointing to know that someone committed genocide in the name of religion. But here are the final words of chapter two:
“And so I believe to-day that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator. In standing guard against the Jew I am defending the handiwork of the Lord.”
After reading this, it’s perfectly clear that Hitler is no atheist.
Hitler wrote at length about the moral and cultural decay of Germans. He viewed Syphilis, which he attributed to German prostitutes as well as a lack of youth education, as an example of that decay. I found this interesting because I’ve read/seen somewhere that Hitler was suspected to have been suffering from Syphilis.
It’s safe to say that he was suffering from cognitive dissonance to say the least, because no consistent thinker could justify the assertion that Jews have never contributed anything to the world of art in their history. The Holy Bible is the basis for Western Civilization, and the Jews were responsible for writing most of it. Somehow this fact escaped Hitler.
Hitler believed very strongly in the careful usage of propaganda to “educate” Germans and to lift their spirits. He believed that the skillful usage of propaganda by the English and the poor usage of it in World War I by Germany was one very important reason that the Germans lost that war and suffered the humiliation of being censured and sanctioned, particularly by Britain. He believed that if he harnessed propaganda like they had done previously, he could rally his own people to a position of power again.
On Race Mixing:
Hitler wrote that race mixing would result in an intellectual and physical decline, both in individuals and on the “Aryan race” as a whole:
“…nothing more or less than a sin against the will of the eternal creator.”
Hitler also believed that Jews purposely mixed with Germans to foul up the Aryan race, but only with Jewish females. He believed that Jewish males would keep their own blood “clean” by only being with other Jews.
On Liberal Media, Pacifism, Communism, Cubist Art, etc:
Hitler saw all of these (and more) as Jewish tricks essentially.
These were just a few things I noticed that caught my attention, but there is so much to scrutinize in this book.
Ultimately, I rated this book the way I would rate any other book I read, on the writing itself. This is not a great piece of literature. Hitler rambles at times and things become repetitive. It could be argued that it wasn’t meant to be a piece of literature, that it was meant to be more like a long speech, and fair enough. But I have to use what I have at my disposal, and that is a hardback book. But it’s certainly readable, and of course it gives invaluable insight into the mind of the man responsible for incalculable pain, suffering and death.