Front Page Titles (by Subject) 7.: Pan-Germanism and Nazism - Omnipotent Government: The Rise of the Total State and Total War
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7.: Pan-Germanism and Nazism - Ludwig von Mises, Omnipotent Government: The Rise of the Total State and Total War 
Omnipotent Government: The Rise of the Total State and Total War, edited with a Foreword by Bettina Bien Greaves (Indianapolis: Indiana, 2011).
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Pan-Germanism and Nazism
The essential ideas of Nazism were developed by the Pan-Germans and the socialists of the chair in the last thirty years of the nineteenth century. The system was completed long before the outbreak of the first World War. Nothing was lacking and nothing but a new name was added later. The plans and policies of the Nazis differ from those of their predecessors in imperial Germany only in the fact that they are adapted to a different constellation of political conditions. The ultimate aim, German world hegemony, and the means for its attainment, conquest, have not changed.
One of the most curious facts of modern history is that the foreigners for whom this German nationalism was a menace did not sooner become aware of the danger. A few Englishmen saw through it. But they were laughed at. To Anglo-Saxon common sense the Nazi plans seemed too fantastic to be taken seriously. Englishmen, Americans, and Frenchmen seldom have a satisfactory command of the German language; they do not read German books and newspapers. English politicians who had visited Germany as tourists and had met German statesmen were regarded by their fellow countrymen as experts on German problems. Englishmen who had once attended a ball at the court in Berlin or dined in the officers’ mess of a Potsdam regiment of the Royal Guards came home with the glad tidings that Germany is peace loving and a good friend of Great Britain. Proud of their knowledge acquired on the spot, they arrogantly dismissed the holders of dissenting views as “theorists and pedantic doctrinaires.”
King Edward VII, himself the son of a German father and of a mother whose German family did not assimilate itself to British life, was highly suspicious of the challenging attitudes of his nephew, William II. It was to the King’s credit that Great Britain, almost too late, turned toward a policy of defense and of coöperation with France and Russia. But even then the British did not realize that not the Kaiser alone but almost the whole German nation was eager for conquest. President Wilson labored under the same mistake. He too believed that the court and the Junkers were the instigators of the aggressive policy and that the people were peace loving.
Similar errors prevail today. Misled by Marxian prejudices, people cling to the opinion that the Nazis are a comparatively small group which has, through fraud and violence, imposed its yoke on the reluctant masses. They do not understand that the internal struggles which shook Germany were disputes among people who were unanimous in regard to the ultimate ends of German foreign policy. Rathenau, whom the Nazis assassinated, was one of the outstanding literary champions both of German socialism and of German nationalism. Stresemann, whom the Nazis disparaged as pro-Western, was in the years of the first World War one of the most radical advocates of the so-called German peace—i.e., the annexation of huge territories at both western and eastern borders of the Reich. His Locarno policy was a make-shift devised to give Germany a free hand in the East. If the communists had seized power in Germany, they would not have adopted a less aggressive policy than the Nazis did. Strasser, Rauschning, and Hugenberg were personal rivals of Hitler, not opponents of German nationalism.
The Social Democrats in Imperial Germany