In This Review

Die Revolution Des Nihilismus
Die Revolution Des Nihilismus
By Hermann Rauschning
Europa Verlag, 1938, 510 pp

The author of this remarkable though overlengthy book (its ideas could have been much better expressed in 200 pages) was the Nazi President of the Danzig Senate from 1933 to 1935, when he fled as a result of his break with the Party. He belongs to the Prussian Junker class, whose outlook on most social and political questions he still shares. Perhaps precisely because of his anti-liberal and anti-democratic bias he is admirably equipped to explain National Socialism as an expression of the German spirit. He is now convinced that the only objective of the small core of élite who engineered the Nazi Revolution has from the start been to expand their own power, regardless of means or consequences, and he concludes that this "permanent revolution" must inevitably lead to mob rule and chaos -- i.e. nihilism. From his close association with Hitler and other Nazi leaders he is able to give us one of the best pictures we have of how the Party's high command operates and of what jealousies animate it. Rauschning is among those who do not oppose a German alliance with Russia. As he points out, Germany's economic and social order is now so similar to the Bolshevik system that an entente with the Soviets can no longer create any serious domestic difficulties for her. The announced English version of this important book will be welcome.