This is the text of the fifth flyer distributed by the German resistance group Weiße Rose. Pass it on.

Written by Alexander Schmorell and Willi Graf
Corrected and proofed by Kurt Huber
Imprint: 6000-9000 copies
Distributed January 1943 in Munich


A call to all Germans!

The war is drawing towards its inevitable end. Just as it did in 1918, the German government is trying to divert attention to the growing menace of submarines while, in the east, the armies are retreating in rivers and, in the west, an invasion is expected. America's armament production has not yet reached its peak yet even today it surpasses everything known in history. Hitler, with mathematical certainty, is leading the German people into the abyss. Hitler can no longer win the war, he can only prolong it. His guilt and that of his cohorts has exceeded every imaginable measure. The just punishment draws closer and closer!

But what do the German people do? They see not and hear not. They blindly follow their seducers into ruin. "Victory at any cost!" they wrote on their banners. "I fight to the last man" says Hitler--meanwhile the war is already lost.

Germans! Do you want you and your children to suffer the same fate as the Jews? Do you want to be judged by the same measure as your seducers? Shall we forever be the whole world's outcast and hated people? No! So distance yourselves from National Socialist subhumanity! Prove in deeds that you think differently! A new war of liberation is upon us. The best part of the people is fighting on our side.

Tear away the mantle of indifference that you have laid around your hearts. Make your choice before it's too late! Don't believe the National Socialist propaganda that's filled you with the fear of Bolshevism! Do not believe that Germany's well-being is tied to the victory of National Socialism, for better or for worse! A crime cannot bring on a German victory. Detach yourselves from everything connected to National Socialism while there's still time! Afterwards a terrible but just judgement will be passed on those who hid themselves in cowardly indecision.

What do we learn from the outcome of a war that was never a national one?

The imperialist obsession with power, wherever it may come from, must forever be rendered harmless. Never again can one-sided Prussian militarism be allowed to seize control. Only with the generous cooperation of the people of Europe can the groundwork be laid on which it will be possible to build anew. Every forcible centralisation, such as that which the Prussian state has tried to impose on Germany and Europe, must be nipped in the bud. The coming Germany can only be federal.

Only a healthy federalist order is now in a position to breathe new life into a weakened Europe. The workers must be freed from their condition of base slavery by means of a rational Socialism. The illusion of a self-sufficient economy must disappear from Europe. All peoples and every individual are entitled to the world's goods!

Freedom of speech, freedom of creed, the individual citizen's protection from arbitrary actions of criminal, violent regimes, those are the foundations of the new Europe.

Support the resistance movement! Pass on this flyer!


The authors of this text did not live to see Germany humiliated and in ruins. They did not see the birth of the federal Germany in 1949. They did not witness the signing of the Treaty of Rome in 1957. Sixty years later, for better or for worse, the vision they had in the midst of the most destructive war in history, the vision of a united Europe, is drawing closer. A piece of resistance literature that borders on prophecy.

Source of text: Deutsches Historisches Museum
Translation by the writeup author; Emphasis and formatting as in the German text
This original translation is hereby placed in the public domain.

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