Goebbels calls for 'Total War'
18th February 1943: Hitler's Propaganda Chief sets the tone for the Nazi line on the future of the war
Speaking to a selected audience of party fanatics on the 18th February 1943 Hitler's propaganda chief, Joseph Goebbels, made the most famous speech of his career1. His central message was, in reality, a terrible one.
A merciless war is raging in the East. The Führer was right when he said that in the end there will not be winners and losers, but the living and the dead.
The war was set to continue and become an even more bitter struggle, many more soldiers would die - and conditions at home would get much worse as everyone had to make more of a contribution to the war effort2. Yet he managed to turn this on its head and make it sound like a triumph: