Soldiers, hold on to your weapons

(A letter from a soldier)

So comrade, what do you think of the new people who arrived yesterday? Yes, it’s the latest reserves: without receiving any training they have been mobilised, given uniforms, wage booklets and identity plaques and been sent to the front, albeit without any weapons. It is as if there were no weapons left in the country. But there are.

But listen for a moment. When I was mobilised four years ago in B., a big industrial town, we too had to wait for our guns, and no artillery arrived until 11 days later, which our instructors bitched about. Mine, a chief-brigadier, a salesman by trade and an SA member, said: “We have to wait around, but down there they always have the best and newest equipment first”. He was referring to the Waffen SS who had a brand new barracks not far from our own.

Yes, you know, now he would be able understand why the SS always get the new equipment first, and why the ordinary conscript is sent to the front without any weapons. It is clear that the Hitlerite régime is scraping the bottom of the barrel and that Hitler and his henchmen can only hope for a miracle to allow them to cling on to power. For this reason they must send the SS around the country: on one hand they can keep down the youth with the SS, since they’re tough chaps, eh?!, and on the other hand they are the most loyal bedfellows of Hitler, and in the case that the proletariat rose up he could send them in with the Gestapo to crush them. Perhaps you think that they could use their new recruits to do this instead and so you had better ask them what they think about it? Rubbish, when Hitler’s bastards are gone the war will be over! And they say we still have to risk our necks for Hitler and the Nazi bureaucrats, so that they and their backers, the big German capitalists, can continue to rule?!

Do you still believe that they can train up soldiers back home? With weapons? The capitalists and their Nazi lackeys are too afraid to do this. They would prefer to terrorise the masses: that is why the Red Army is already almost at the border, that is why they are already shitting their pants and that is why they are hurrying to dispatch the last workers and agricultural toilers to the abattoir. They think they can cut down the women and children with their Gestapo executioners. As for the soldiers, they will only give them weapons if they can be sure that there is no chance that they will come back, if they are where they have to fire at the enemy and there is no danger that a stray bullet will strike a Nazi bureaucrat, where they can only fire at their opposite numbers, the comrades on the other side. The officers and that reactionary crowd are still in place. Yes, we’re forced to do this, what else are you going to do? I know as well as you do that all of us, including the new people, have had more than enough of this senseless carnage, of the great massacre of the international proletariat, but here’s the signal that the last hour of the fascist gang has arrived, the moment when Hitler and his bandits will be overthrown by the coming social revolution, the moment when these dogs will pay for the crimes they committed against millions of workers. For that moment, comrade, take care of your weapons! If necessary mend them, and don’t let them out of your hands, since you will need them when the time comes for you and us to hunt down the capitalists and the fascist gang of Hitler, Goering, Himmler and their Gestapo executioners. This gang will not give up of its own free will, knowing that doors are closing all around it. It would rather kill the last living thing and destroy the last house before perishing itself! But we will stop this last act of folly by this unruly mob! Comrade! When the last hour sounds, we will all march forward to the socialist revolution with arms linked, carrying the banner of freedom which will bring us peace and bread. We all want to create the free state of all workers, a free socialist Germany of soviets, from which base the socialist revolution would then spread victoriously across the other countries of Europe, until the creation of a free Soviet Socialist European Union! Comrades! Keep your weapon by your side, until you hear the call: arise for the final struggle!