German Propaganda Archive Calvin University


Background: The Frauen Warte was the Nazi Party’s biweekly illustrated magazine for women. This is an article from the 1st January issue, 1940 that works to persuade women to have children even in the midst of war.

The source: Paul Danzer, “Das Leben muß siegen,” NS Frauen Warte, (8), #13 (1st January issue, 1940), p. 289.

Life Must Win

Thoughts on the New Year

What the man sacrifices in fighting for his people, the woman sacrifices in fighting to maintain this people. The man shows heroism on the battlefield, the woman shows it in eternal patient devotion, in ever patient sorrow and endurance.

Each child that she brings into the world is a battle that she fights for the existence or nonexistence of her people

— Der Führer

In happy times, holidays like Christmas Eve with the family or New Year’s Eve are high points. In graver times when the fate of an entire people hangs in the balance, they are an occasion for looking back and looking ahead. Only weak people will fall into lame sentimentality or be tempted by hopeless self-pity. Others find occasion to catch their breath, to find clear, solid knowledge that they can use to give them new courage to go on with their labors. But we should not forget that these holidays even during war bring joy and strength. A war Christmas is not a new thing to those of us who are older. We have experienced it before, those grave but unforgettable Christmases that brought the homeland and the front together in unbreakable community. Christmas, that is the festival of family community. During war, it is the festival of community for all who are of the same nature, the same blood. It is the community of Germans; particularly now as we all stand before unprecedented change, a time of renewal, of youth, of the eternity of our people.

A correct understanding of our time must make us proud and strong, and from such knowledge we may turn our view from outside to the lives of German women. Their high mission as guardians of life is very different from that of the man, and one cannot do enough to emphasize that again and again. The man’s life is filled with struggles and battles, with tools or working the soil. But today more than ever, the outcome depends on the quiet heroism of women. The willingness of the man to die stands against the will of the woman for life. The more we learn about the world and our people, the higher is the role of the woman, and the more we must see the question of life as the most significant. War and victory stand in the service of life, in the service of maintaining and extending the life of our people. That is their meaning.

Our enemies have often said openly that they look for victory not in honest fighting on the battlefield, but rather in a war of annihilation against the core of our national being, against our women and children. They may have hunger written on their battle flags, but these methods they used against us before hold no terror for us, for we are prepared. What is behind those threats is more serious. The implacability of our enemies in England and above all in France is best understood when one realizes that their populations are declining. They face a Germany whose population is so strong they dare not attack it with arms. They hope that by prolonging the war, by blockades and starvation, they can exert pressure on the German life will. These shrinking peoples use poisoned weapons to fight the new, healthy German growth, a Germany they believed they had dealt with in the Treaty of Versailles by senselessly taking its territory in the hopes of cutting off Germany’s life.

The success or failure of the enemy’s devilish plans depends on German women and mothers, on their will to sacrifice and on their love for their children. It may often be hard to be a mother, to carry on the eternal struggle for the life of the German people. That is especially true for women whose husbands are in the military, but each brave deed is its own reward. And let us remember that life keeps going, and breaks through the barriers that stand in its way. Is not the continuing expansion of German territory new proof for the eternal law that life finds its way?

No one may take away the desire of German women to have children. Some may attempt to spread the idea that children born during the war will face hunger and a future wounded in body and soul, as happened during the World War. But the government today sees in children its greatest wealth, and its highest task in caring for them. It will see that children born during the war will be protected, and can look forward to a happy Germany. They will harvest what today is being sown in these great days. And we may not forget that today the whole people stand behind our children; once again it takes pleasure in children and loves them, seeing its future in its children.

Life is the world of the woman. The fate of her people is determined by her attitude toward life, in her will to happiness and her desire for children. Our soldiers protect Germany and all that we have accomplished. But it is our women who are the foundation of Germany’s future, who build it stone by stone through fine German children. Here are the values , here the right to life of our people. Our children are the river that carries German feeling, German thinking, German accomplishments, and the German will through the centuries.

Shall the courage of German women to carry on life be less than the willingness of our soldiers to die? That is the question that is before us. The only answer is this:

A military or political victory over our enemies would be only half the battle, and could not guarantee Germany’s future or the Führer’s work. The decisive factor is the victory of life. And that is in the hands of our women and mothers.

[Page copyright © 1999 by Randall Bytwerk. No unauthorized reproduction. My e-mail address is available on the FAQ page.]

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