Harder’s second profile
Professor Harder – Munich 22, February 18, 1943
Ludwig Str. 14, 1st staircase
After two leaflets (A and B) were submitted to me yesterday, I received four additional leaflets (Leaflets of the White Rose No. I – IV) today. I will designate these with the letters C – F and once again use line numbers. In addition I have been advised that it has been proven through technical means that the author of A B is identical to the author of C – F.
This factor has granted my observations of yesterday’s date new illumination. To begin with, the results of yesterday’s analysis of A B have been confirmed, in that motives are clearly discerned in C – F that only an educated ear could hear in A B.
The following points apply to this observation.
Yesterday’s expert analysis, page 3, number 4, Christian overtones: This now comes clearly into view. Christian expressions multiply. E 14, Creature. D 33, It is not given to us. D 48, May God grant that. Corresponding to the archaic relative pronoun “so”, here there likewise appears the unmistakable sign of theological method of speech, “now there our eyes are opened” [Note 1] (D 79). D 76 is the fanatical call of a hellfire-and-brimstone preacher. C 38, once again the accusation of godlessness, atheistic war machine. F 22, death as reaper. F 27, accusation of blasphemy. E 38, cloak of wisdom (compare with A 26). E 19, according to God’s will. E 35, scattered throughout the world as dust upon the wind. E 39, spawn of hell. C 34, member of the Christian and western culture. But he lets his Christian mask slip most clearly in F: F 44, the One God. F 46, the true God. In F 98, he appears as the bad conscience of mankind. F 47, ship without a rudder, infant without a mother, a cloud that dissipates: these singular images apparently stem from Christian mysticism, I suspect from Meister Ekkehard. In E 11, there was already a reference to civitas dei, which is a Latin quote from Augustine.
This concept is picked up again in F 37: Mankind, which left his position in ordo, that is in the world order, which is similarly an Augustinian image (by the way, it is significant how the author uses Latin phrases without making allowances for [loss of] comprehension). Finally, a large part of F is dominated by the visions in the book of Daniel, visions of the fallen angel, the anti-Christ, and the demon who lies in wait for mankind. There is an element of camouflage in F, in that in F 61, “Proverbs” are quoted, and it certainly refers to the Proverbs of King Solomon [Note 2]. But the author avoided the addendum after all.
Yesterday’s expert analysis, page 4, number 8: Caution regarding propaganda. D 36 demonstrates the same reserve with regards to the Jewish question. E 34, the author is not a monarchist.
Yesterday’s expert analysis, page 6, 2nd paragraph: I determined that the appeals did not have the tone of an embittered loner. In E 46, this is explicitly expressed. In addition, the author perceives himself to be surrounded by like-minded people (E 23; F 10) and – as in B – complains about their indifference ( C 3 ff., D 5 ff.).
I described the author as an intellectual. In the new material, this is once again clearly evident. The author cites largely unknown passages from Goethe and Schiller, and in addition, Novalis, Aristotle, and Lao-Tse. In E 94, he speaks of the “lower social classes”. D 20, of “the German intelligentsia in the prison of the cellar” [Note 3]. Other expressions stem from the same intellectual foundation, such as C 38, the vengeful Nemesis, C 41 hubris, C 32 the insatiable demon. Similarly, the polemic against the regularity of history (found in C 12). The typical intellectual [Note 4] viewpoint reveals itself again in E 72 ff. in the call to sabotage, where the author’s interest is suddenly shifted away from the war industry and lingers for an even longer time on science, culture, art, etc.
Inconsistencies and flawed logic resurface (compare yesterday’s expert analysis page 4, No. 7). In D 15, it states that the true nature of National Socialism became evident only after they came to power, but in D 82, it was the outbreak of war that made it evident.
C – F also point to residence in Germany, as was assumed. A remark in E 30 points to prattle that is typical for Munich.
The intellectual soil from which this author originates reminds me most of Wilhelm Stapel: Here we have the same connection between nationalism [Note 5], modified anti-Semitism, and a political theology that stems from Protestantism, yet which demonstrates interdenominational tendencies. For further examination of these theses, I will first have to acquire the material.
In addition, the author apparently gets nourishment from steady, fairly banal, foreign propaganda, that I am familiar with from my domicile abroad. I would assume that this propaganda comes from foreign [radio] broadcasts, but I do not have any means to test this theory [Note 6]. The following belongs in this category: Preaching of passive resistance; the expression “fascist” with regards to National Socialism, since this expression originated with the Bolshevists; talk of the great losses on the Eastern Front as early as last summer; and finally, the critique of Adolf Hitler’s style in Mein Kampf. And when in C 26, it speaks of few supposedly heroic men who have died, then this assertion, if it is at all true, could only have been learned by the author in this manner [foreign broadcasts].
From the perspective of current history, C – F all reflect the same situation of last summer. They were likely written hastily one right after another. Air raids in Cologne, [military] advances in the East continue, Rommel is in El Alamein (F 6), and it is likely that Quisling had just visited Germany (F 84).
The author has absolutely no serious positive agenda [to offer]. This is even clearer in C – F. He wants to rally opposition (D 23), and passive resistance should be set in motion. But how this is to be coordinated with the militaristic necessities of war is never addressed at all (E 59). This speaks to the same naïveté [described earlier] and even more clearly to the complete irresponsibility of the author.
On the basis of all 6 leaflets, it is possible to construct a sort of political biography [of the author]. The author starts out fairly primitively in C – F (compare the naïve demand [for readers to] duplicate the leaflets). He is decidedly romantic (the maudlin White Rose name). He is not cautious with regards to his political agenda and lets the Christian cat out of the bag. And then he stops his activity. Indeed, he cuts it off unexpectedly. In E 23 and C 28 there are announcements of sequels that go unfulfilled. Following a longish break, he begins anew with A, in January of this year. The political countenance has changed. He has become far more cautious, unromantic, and deliberate. I would like to express the assumption that between these two periods, a foreign influence exists. Clearly some other post, perhaps abroad, has taken notice of him due to the first series of leaflets and exerts influence over him [now]. Therefore his demeanor is now stronger and unerring in reaching its goals (at least as far as he has goals). This intensifies then in the last leaflet (B) by means of a very clever co-opting of recent events in the politics of the university.
In this and the previous expert analysis, whenever I have pointed out the teachings of Wilhelm Stapel and the intellectual space at the university as intellectual soil [for this author], it is naturally not my intention to burden with Stapel or the university with [the guilt of] this individual through these speculations. Rather, I am trying to point out the intellectual snags. I have the impression – and conversations I have had with students following today’s events at the university confirm this – that the author has been able to cleverly latch on to certain situations and events in recent days and use them for his own purposes. But that his insane plans have found no resonance with the student body.
Signed by Harder.
Note 1: Jetzt da uns die Augen geöffnet sind. Difficult to render Luther’s German in English. Similar to King James English.
Note 2: In the German Bible – Catholic and Lutheran – this book is referred to as Proverbs of King Solomon, not simply Proverbs as in the King James Version.
Note 3: Kellerloch, here rendered ‘prison of the cellar’, is a generous translation.
Note 4: Intellectual only, not geistig.
Note 5: Originally said Nationalsozialismus or National Socialism, but the “Sozial” has been crossed out in the original document.
Note 6: Listening to foreign broadcasts was a felony offense, and if Prof. Harder admitted he knew the contents of such broadcasts, he could have been prosecuted himself.
Source: ZC13267 (29 – 32)