20 January 1942, Wannsee, Germany
This horrendous and genocidal speech was delivered by Reinhard Heydrich to 14 other top ranking Nazis at a villa at Wannsee, just outside of Berlin. It strategises the final solution and is extremely distressing to hear and read. In the recreation above, the speech starts at 28.40.
We have the means, the methods, the organisation, experience and people. And we have the will. This is a historic moment in the struggle against Jewry. The Fuhrer has declared his determination ... to destroy European Jewry. The Fuhrer sees himself ... as exterminating fatal bacteria to save the organism. It is them or us.
What has happened so far? Step by step we have forced the Jews out of all levels of German life ...
We have forced them out of the # of the people partly by transfers to concentration camps, and partly due to Obster -bannFuhrer Eichmann’s organisation by permitting 537,000 Jews to emigrate before the war, and finally ...
We have seen since the beginning of the war the liquidation of hundreds of thousands of Polish, Baltic and Russian Jews. You gentlemen from the Party Chancellory, the Riech Chancellory, the Foreign Office, General Govenment and ministry for the East have been kept informed by Gestapo reports of the Action groups’ activities ...
The Reichsfuhrer SS has forbidden any further emigration of Jews. The Jews remaining in the Reich and all European Jews in our present and future spheres of influence will be evacuated to the East for the final solution ...
We shall work effectively but silently. Total cooperation will be required in this matter of life or death for the Reich. So that we can all envisage what the Jewish question in the Reich involves (pointing to a map of Europe) the red area shows the Reich on the eve of war. This is the Eastern front. Behind in white conquered Eastern territories under Germany’s civilian rule. In pink territories subject to the Reich - in vertical and stripes occupied territories in the rest of Europe. Horiozontal red stripes our Allies or countries under our influence. The dots on the map like fly spots represents the density of the Jewish population. That is our problem the further we advance between Riga and Odessa.
We must deal with settlements of our Jewish opponents. They’ve made themselves comfortable for centuries. In my own home town of Odessa there are more than 70,000 Jewish inhabitants. There were, used to be (laugher). To sum up gentlemen, our Action groups following hard on the heels of our troops have virtually eliminated the Jewish concentrations. We have influenced the old anti-Semitism by certain procedural measures.
Now the rough work has been done we must begin the period of finer work. We need to work in harmony with the civil administration. We count on you gentlemen as far as the final solution is concerned. What is to be resolved will be resolved here (pointing to the East), at the world’s arse, as my men say. War and gunsmoke have made immense achievements possible. It is the Reichsfuhrer SS’s will that the Jewish question is settled there in one clean sweep. The total Jews concerned - 11,000,000.
This breaks down as follows:
In the old Reich - 130,000
In Austria - 43,000
In the Protectorate - 2,500,000
In the Balkans - 1,600,000
In Occupied France - 165,000
In Unoccupied France - 740,000 (quite a task!)
In the New Europe for which we shall be responsible, in foreign unoccupied countries like England - 350,000
In neutral countries like Switzerland - 18,000 of the Chosen People.
In the final solution we will use the Jews as labour in the East. They will be marched, both sexes segregated, in columns, building roads on the way, breaking rocks, draining marshes. We’ll give them every opportunity to find out what work means, on the extensive industrial plains now being constructed by Comrade Pohl of the SS’s Economic Office ...
Of course, most of these Jews will succumb to natural wastage: the remainder, the toughest , will have to be processed accordingly. Why? Because it is the survival of the fittest. Otherwise they’d seed a new Jewish resurrection. Look at history!