Talk:Joseph Goebbels

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This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Joseph Goebbels page.

Archive of discussions on Joseph Goebbels page

"Lenin oder Hitler?" quote[edit]

So, on 8 March 2020, an anonymous user culled a lot of quotes from the page, saying "Trust me, I’ve read the texts these are supposedly from. They’re not in them." Now, for research purposes, I am very interested in one of the quotes that was culled: "Capitalism is the immoral distribution of capital...Germany will become free at that moment when the thirty millions on the left and the thirty millions on the right make common cause. Only one movement is capable of doing this: National Socialism, embodied in one Führer – Adolf Hitler." It was attributed to a speech given by Goebbels and then published as "Lenin or Hitler?" by Streiter-Verlag in Zwickau, in 1926. I have been unable to find any copies of this speech for me to confirm the quote, but I have found scholarly works referencing the speech for other reasons (Doctor Goebbels: His Life and Work, and Goebbels: A Biography). Does anyone know where I might read the speech for myself, or, better, does anyone know where I might find the above quote? And if it is fabricated or inaccurate, does anyone know why or by whom? Thank you.


These require citations to adequate sources before being placed into the main article.
  • Propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting on their own free will.
  • A media system wants ostensible diversity that conceals an actual uniformity.
  • We are striving not for truth, but effect.
  • The worst enemy of any propaganda, it is intellectualism.
  • For the lie to be believable, it should be terrifying.
  • "A lie repeated thousands of times becomes a truth." A false quotation that is also spread as "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventurally come to believe it."[1]
  • Some day the lie will fall under its own weight and the truth will rise.
  • I am very interested in social developments in America. I believe that President Roosevelt has chosen the right path. We are dealing with the greatest social problems ever known. Millions of unemployed must get their jobs back, and this cannot be left to private initiative. It is the government that must tackle the problem.
    • 1934 interview.
  • One of the most ridiculous aspects of democracy will always remain... the fact that it has offered to its mortal enemies the means by which to destroy it.
  • Once more a red fire blows steeply upwards...the factory will do no more work for Herr Churchill... tomorrow morning Coventry will lie in smoke and ruins.
    • September 1940
  • It is on this beautiful day that we celebrate the Fuhrer's birthday and thank him for he is the only reason why Germany is still alive today.
    • April 26, 1945
  • We have a feeling that Germany has been transformed into a great house of God, including all classes, professions and creeds, where the Führer as our mediator stood before the throne of the Almighty.
    • April 19, 1936 broadcast
  • We can do without butter, but, despite all our love of peace, not without arms. One cannot shoot with butter, but with guns.
  • If we have power, we'll never give it up again unless we're carried out of our offices as corpses.
    • This comment should be added to the "Misattributed" section of the article: while Goebbels did not specifically speak these quotes, the quotes are a "paraphrase" of the quote that is correctly attributed to him. So, it's not a misattribution, it's a common sense "paraphrase" of what the man actually said. This is the same problem with the Sinclair Lewis quote from 1935, where he said, "When Fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and waving a cross". Now, while Lewis didn't say that in so many words in one statement, there are two pieces of his writing that, if you paraphrase them, the correct interpretation is made. I've researched it myself. I've come to the conclusion that Lewis "paraphrased" himself so that the media to whom he spoke could have a quote that encapsulates what he meant.
  • If the day should ever come when we must go, if some day we are compelled to leave the scene of history, we will slam the door so hard that the universe will shake and mankind will stand back in stupefaction.
  • If you've got nothing to hide, you've got nothing to fear.

Sounds more like a left-winger[edit]

Bashing captialism, prefering communist Russia as a close ally and seeing little difference between Stalin and Hitler in the first four quotes being shown here on this page.…

Came here to comment on the same. It's quite curious that so many of the quotes in the opening section are concerned with Communism instead of Nazism.
Wikiquote:What_Wikiquote_is_not#Wikiquote_is_not_a_discussion_forum Cagliost (talk) 11:01, 26 July 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Yes, bold text is being used to draw attention to elements of Goebbels' propaganda that uses words relating to socialism and communism, presumably to insinuate equivalence between leftist and far-right anti-capitalist stances. The bold appears to have been added by the user HenryGarden1000. The history of this user's edits suggests that similar bias is being applied to quotes relating to fascism and socialism (implying a relationship between the two), and relating to libertarianism (where anti-leftist text is in bold). What action can be taken?

September 1934 in Nuremberg[edit]

I have read following attributed:

Good propaganda does not need to lie, indeed it may not lie. It has no reason to fear the truth. It is a mistake to believe that people cannot take the truth. They can. It is only a matter of presenting the truth to people in a way that they will be able to understand. A propaganda that lies proves that it has a bad cause. It cannot be successful in the long run.

Anyone know source? ScratchMarshall (talk) 00:23, 3 July 2018 (UTC)[reply]


Referenda quotation[edit]

On 1 December 2017, User:HenryGarden1000 added in the quotation,

"The nation and the government in Germany are one thing. The will of the people is the will of the government and vice versa. The modern structure of the German State is a higher form of democracy [ennobled democracy] in which, by virtue of the people’s mandate, the government is exercised authoritatively while there is no possibility for parliamentary interference, to obliterate and render ineffective the execution of the nation’s will."


"“On National-Socialist Germany And Her Contribution Towards Peace.” Speech to the representatives of the international press at Geneva on December 28. 1933. German League of Nations Union News Service, PRO, FO 371/16728"

Recently I've seen this quote appear in whole or part around the internet. Googling for this quotation, or the speech "On National-Socialist Germany And Her Contribution Towards Peace", returns only a few results, which all are later than the addition to this page.

"German League of Nations Union News Service" brings up only 14 results on Google which all appear to be copied from this citation. FO 371 appears as a collection in the search, but reference 16728 does not. There are only two items that appear in FO 371 relating to Goebbels, FO 371/24838/7319 and FO 371/21791/13045, neither of which is available online but they are dated much later than 1933.

It looks like the origin of this quote is in fact this wikiquote page. I'm going to remove it unless someone else can provide a correct reference for it. --JCrue (talk) 14:43, 16 December 2018 (UTC)[reply]

The National Archives entry is [1] - that file is Germany, 1933. So it is plausible, but since the content isn't online, can't be sure. --

Here's the correct reference: [2]

Recent addition[edit]

About this edit, that quote is way too butchered to be quotable, and the German source is not easly verifible. Rupert Loup 00:01, 3 May 2020 (UTC)

I just added a part of the previous addition -- the source/Reuth quoted in the way I had added it before. What is left now should be long enough -- it's clearly not "butchered". 21:31, 7 May 2020 (UTC)[reply]
I really think that context should be added. If you can add the complete missing content, even if it is in German, would be appreciate it. Rupert Loup 13:26, 8 May 2020 (UTC)

NYT article[edit]

About this edit, there is no statement by Goebbels quoted in that report by the NYT, and that article is not widely quoted either, failing WQ:Q. Rupert Loup 10:35, 17 July 2020 (UTC)

The article is reprinted in Marcy Lane Johnson Golde, The Rise of Hitler and the American Press, 1922–1933 (Stanford University Press, 1957), p. 28, where Goebbels is quoted as comparing Lenin to Hitler. This is a reliable source.--Britannicus (talk) 11:14, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
In which part is quoted? I don't see any quote in that article. Rupert Loup 11:57, 17 July 2020 (UTC)
"On the speaker's Dr. Goebbels' assertion that Lenin was the greatest man, second only to Hitler, and that the difference between communism and the Hitler faith was very slight", from Marcy Lane Johnson Golde, The Rise of Hitler and the American Press, 1922–1933 (Stanford University Press, 1957), p. 28. The reference for this in the book is The New York Times, November 28, 1925, page 4, column 2. The book is a reliable source published by Stanford University and therefore there is no reason to delete it.--Britannicus (talk) 12:15, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
I said "in which part is quoted?" There is no repetition of an utterance in quotative markers there. It's an obscure attribution by an anonymous author. Rupert Loup 12:34, 17 July 2020 (UTC)
It is not unusual for newspaper articles to be unsigned, therefore that's no reason to exclude it. The quote is in past tense, which is not unusual in newspaper articles either. Both the NY Times and the book published by Stanford University Press are reliable sources. Also, the quote is not very different from the other Goebbels' quotes from the 1920s in this page. There is no valid reason to delete it.--Britannicus (talk) 12:45, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
An anonymous article published in the New York Times during the 20's about Lenin is not a reliable source. And since no proof that this is a quote from Goebbels was presented here, it won't stay in WQ. Rupert Loup 13:04, 17 July 2020 (UTC)
Just because it's in past tense doesn't stop it being a quote. There is a reliable primary source (NY Times) and a reliable secondary source (Golde's book published by Stanford University Press) for this quote.--Britannicus (talk) 13:11, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
The NYT reporting was neither unbiased nor accurate during the 20s, I'm also not convinced that a book written by an obscure author during the McCarthyist era is a reliable source here. Rupert Loup 13:36, 17 July 2020 (UTC)
That is merely your opinion. A book published by Stanford University Press meets WQ's source guidelines. The quote is also in keeping with the others from the 1920s in this article.--Britannicus (talk) 13:50, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
Some corroborating evidence from an academic article: "Goebbels even idealized Nikolai Lenin, one of the founders of Russian Communism" - Kenneth J. Campbell, 'Joseph Goebbels: Propagandist', American Intelligence Journal, Vol. 30, No. 2 (2012), p. 126. Also: "According to Goebbels, no czar had understood the Russian people's nationalistic instincts as well as Lenin, who...was not an internationalist Marxist. [Quoting Goebbels:] 'Lenin sacrificed Marx and instead gave Russia freedom'." Ralf Georg Reuth, Goebbels (1993), p. 66.--Britannicus (talk) 15:12, 17 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]
That are commentaries about him, not quotes by him. Rupert Loup 22:06, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
As far as I am aware, Wikiquote has not forbidden the NYT from being used as a source. It is merely in your opinion.--Britannicus (talk) 22:09, 10 October 2020 (UTC)[reply]
That's right, that is a quote by the NYT, non from Goebbles. Rupert Loup 22:17, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
The NYT reported Goebbels' speech in the past tense, which is not unusual for a newspaper. As far as I'm aware, that doesn't disqualify it from being used on Wikiquote. There are other examples on other pages.--Britannicus (talk) 22:21, 10 October 2020 (UTC)[reply]
Nobody is stoping you to put the full quote by the NYT in the correct section on quotes about Goebbels, taking quotes out of context from a biased source is against WQ policies. Rupert Loup 22:26, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
Has WQ ruled that the NYT is a "biased source"?--Britannicus (talk) 22:44, 10 October 2020 (UTC)[reply]

Does anyone know the source for this quote?[edit]

"The ordinary Bürger, the ordinary citizen, will not vote for us, unless they’re terrified that the communists, that the Bolsheviks are coming for their property. Only if we can terrify them into thinking that the Bolsheviks, that communism is nigh, that it’s right around the corner and their property is going to be seized—only then will they run into our arms as their protectors."

Goebbels on freedom of speech (help wanted)[edit]

I am not familiarized with wikiquote projects. I usually edit wikipedias and wiktionaries. I kindly ask, then, for someone to add this quote "Daß Ihr das [Freiheit der Meinung] uns gegeben habt, - das ist ja ein Beweis dafür, wie dumm Ihr seid!" I would translate that as "The fact that they gave us that [freedom of speech] is, for sure, one proof of how dumb they are!" Source: w:Saarländischer Rundfunk, Rede von Reichsminister (…) Joseph Goebbels (…) am 4. Dezember 1935, from 15:29 to 15:34. Thanks a lot --Usien6 (talk) 23:44, 10 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Word-for-word translation: That you-SINGULAR-FORMAL that [freedom of-the-opinion] to-us given have that is yes one/a proof for-that how dumb you-SINGULAR-FORMAL are." --Usien6 (talk) 23:55, 10 February 2022 (UTC)[reply]
  1. [ Schultze, Quentin J., and Randall L. Bytwerk. “PLAUSIBLE QUOTATIONS AND REVERSE CREDIBILITY IN ONLINE VERNACULAR COMMUNITIES.” ETC: A Review of General Semantics, vol. 69, no. 2, 2012, pp. 216–234.] This quotation appeared in over 500.000 internet pages by December 2011, but none, even the academic ones, German or other, provide a source. From the internet the false quotation has passed to print. (pp. 216, 217, 221)