Exporting American Exceptionalism: or The Economics of Imperialism

[Eckhart Kehr’s] studies of the intimate relations of business leaders, industrialists, and foreign policymakers in the empire forced him to the conclusion that profit had been a far more significant incentive for German imperialism than grandiose thoughts about the German mission…[He] discovered that social structure and economic interests influenced political decisions in ways that pious historians had always denied, or, rather, never seen.

Peter Gay, Weimar Culture: Outsider as Insider (New York, NY: W.W. Norton and Company, inc. 2001), 29.


If I can accept a divine Commandment, it’s this one: ‘Thou shalt preserve the species.’ The life of an individual must not be set at too high a price. If the individual were important in the eyes of nature, nature would take care to preserve him.”

– Adolf Hitler, Hitler’s Secret Conversations, 1941-1945 (New York: Tarred, Straus, and Young, 1953) 116.

Preservation is tied to the iron law of necessity and the right of victory of the best and the strongest…Whoever wants to live, must struggle, and whoever will not fight in this world of eternal struggle does not deserve to live…Even if this is harsh – it is simply the way it is.”

– Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf (Munich: NSDAP, 1943) 316-317.

Mutually Assured Destruction

I think it well…for the man in the street to realise that there is no power on earth that can protect him from being bombed. Whatever people may tell him, the bomber will always get through…The only defence is offence, which means that you will have to kill women and children more quickly than the enemy if you want to save yourselves.”

– Stanley Baldwin, Prime Minister of England, 1935n