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Still wearing (contrary to Berlin reports) the special soldier suit he had sworn on Sept. 1 to clothe himself in "until victory or death," Adolf Hitler rose one night last week before his rubber-stamp Reichstag. He had just returned from a one-day tour of his latest prize of war, the ruined city of Warsaw (see p. 45). He was now about to launch his well-heralded peace offensive.

But Herr Hitler did not begin by talking peace. In fact for almost an hour of his 80-minute address—a loosely knit discussion with few of the great dramatic lifts that characterized the Führer's oratory before he began to discard his street-corner style in favor of what he considers the more statesmanlike fashion—he talked about almost everything except peace. Germans and colored folk like their sermons long and discursive, and, in spite of a disordered world's need for straight plain talk, that is the way the Germans are still getting them from the Aggrandizer.

Lies and Laurels. The Polish victory came first on Speaker Hitler's list, accompanied by three bare-faced lies. Lie No. 1: "A state of no less than 36,000,000 inhabitants took up arms against us. Their arms were far-reaching, and their confidence in their ability to crush Germany knew no bounds." Lie No. 2: In spite of the "violations and insults which Germany and her armed forces had to put up with from these military dilettantes," the First Soldier of the Reich claimed that he "endeavored to restrict aerial warfare to objectives of so-called military importance, or only to employ it to combat active resistance at a given point." (For photographs and an accompanying eyewitness account of German restricted aerial warfare see p. 45.) Lie No. 3: All objective reports of the last days of besieged Warsaw agree that the Germans refused point-blank to allow the garrison to evacuate non-combatants from the city. Herr Hitler's variorum: "Sheer sympathy for women and children caused me to make an offer to those in command of Warsaw at least to let civilian inhabitants leave the city. . . . The proud Polish commander of the city did not even condescend to reply."

The German victory, though it had to be won at times over odds of 6-to-1, was not only sweet but cheap in casualties, said the Führer (see p. 44). And now "German soldiers have once more firmly established the right to wear the laurel wreath of which they were meanly deprived in 1918."

"Abortion." Herr Hitler paid his respects to all ranks of the vanquished Poles in another few thousand well-chosen words. The Polish government was supported by only 15% of the population, a "lapdog of the Western democracies," an "abortion" of the Versailles Treaty. As to the character of the population, he went back to 1598 and quoted a diplomatic report of one Sir George Carew: "The outstanding features of Polish character were cruelty and lack of moral restraint." When modern Poland, "although not menaced at all," received the Allies' guarantees, the "shameless insults" which she heaped on the Third Reich at last became unbearable. Hence Sept. 1.

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