By Jan Herman Brinks
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Additional info for Children of a new fatherland : Germany's post-war right-wing politics
It is worth examining the programme of the neo-Nazis. Until the beginning of the 1980s Adolf Hitler was the great example for most German neo-Nazis. There were also, however, neo-Nazis who were critical of Hitler. Their greatest reproach was that he had abandoned, 36 National-revolutionary Sentiments 37 in their view, his early national-revolutionary ideals. These nationalrevolutionary ideas dated back to the dawning of National Socialism and were embodied in Otto and Gregor Strasser, and the Chief of Staff of the SA, Ernst Röhm.
It even resorted to the whole and undivided history of Germany, formally to legitimise the divided German nation. And it was the arch-enemies of Adenauer, namely the old Prussians and Lutheranism, who again took centre stage: Luther, Frederick II and Bismarck were once more completely salonfähig in East Germany. It was obvious that this trend would encourage a feeling of inter-German solidarity. But might it not also reactivate nationalist sentiment and resentment? Most East Germans felt a desire to be reuniﬁed with the Federal Republic, but this was considered to be no longer a political reality.
Morality can never be achieved through the device of institutions: and, because socialism strives for institutions, it remains political; it can criticise, abolish abuses, attain rights: it will never be able to change life on earth because that power is reserved for philosophy, faith, the transcendental idea. However, when the shortcomings of socialism become clear it should be no cause for rejoicing among those who oppose it from a facile preference for the existing order, from fear of having to make sacriﬁces and out of emotional laziness.