Second meeting with Falk Harnack (Willi Graf)
The next day, or the day after, I think it was Thursday February 11, 1943, shortly after 11 am, I went to Scholl’s apartment. After the lecture, he had told me that I should come with him, that Harnack would be stopping by. When we arrived at Scholl’s apartment, Schmorell and Harnack were already standing in front of the door. A few minutes later, Professor Huber arrived as well.
After Huber appeared, Scholl introduced him. In closing, Scholl mentioned – without any kind of segue or introduction – that for the sake of the entire group, Harnack should expound upon his thoughts and plans regarding the form of government that he envisioned. Harnack basically said that the future nations of Europe had to have an authoritarian forms of government in which industry and economics (and particularly heavy industry [Note 1]) were socialized, because that would be the only way that prestige and prosperity could be reinstated in those nations. He pointed to Russia and its nationalization of both train and postal services by way of example.
Huber contradicted this view and championed the notion that this development would in the end empower the destruction of the middle class and the invalidation of private ownership. Scholl was of the same opinion. Despite the disagreement, Harnack would not be moved from his plans. He additionally proposed that it would be necessary to dispense with the middle class and private ownership to the benefit of a centrally led and administered economy. Huber replied: “Yes, and if it were to come to that, then we would have the same conditions as in Bolshevist Russia, and that would be terrible.”
In the course of the conversation, Harnack mentioned that there had been groups and circles in Berlin that had concerned themselves with these questions, and that they were represented in the highest ranks [of government]. His (Harnack’s) brother had been involved in this matter. From that I concluded that the groups in Berlin had been cleaned out and where possible, prosecuted.
I was present at this discussion for about an hour. I left before it ended. During the conversation, I was more of a listener, because I could hardly get a word in edgewise. I only know that I openly opposed the thoughts of socialization.
Note 1: Mining, iron, and steel industries.