Wednesday, July 4, 2018

The 1937 Meeting of Ribbentrop and Churchill

In his "Gathering Storm", Winston Churchill describes his meeting in 1937 with Herr von Ribbentrop, the German Ambassador in London. Ribbentrop asked for free hand in East Europe, because Germany must have her Lebensraum, for her increasing population. Churchill said no. Then war is inevitable. "When you talk about war, you must not underrate England. She is a curious country and few foreigners understand her mind. She is very clever. If you plunge us into a Great War, she will bring the whole world against you."

That was exactly what followed.

Here too, as with the Nazi concept of work, I find amazing that Nazi thinking was based on eighteen century economic doctrines, totally wrong and obsolete. The fact about Germany is that its population was growing very slowly (and after 1972 it is decreasing) so here was no foreseeable need for more space. The idea that population will increase geometrically is an error conceived by the English cleric and political economy expert Malthus. A very harmful error because it was believed by the Nazis, and with their rigid logic they concluded that they needed more agricultural land to feed future generations. The concept that food production was limited by surface multiplied by fertility of the soil is another eighteen century concept, invented by David Ricardo. That equation had been made obsolete by Liebig, who discovered chemical fertilizers, the Nazi thought did not register the agricultural revolution  and was ruled by long discarded concepts. The had just need to look at the price of cereals (bread): with the opening of the American Middle West and the virgin lands of South Russia, the price of cereals fell to 10% of its former price and Germany could import any quantity wanted. 

Germany in 1937 had no population problems and did not need any living space. They went to war for the wrong reasons. They must have known it. Hitler's real reason to plunge the world into a war was to exterminate the Jews, and he wrote so in his will. All the talk about lebensraum is bullshit. 

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