My New Order
REYNAL & HITCHCOCK
IF Alaric, Attila, or some other barbarian invader of the Roman Empire had been as garrulous as Hitler, and if a philosophically-minded Roman had found a refuge where he could prepare a commentary on the barbarian’s speeches, the result would have been something quite similar to this book of Mr. de Sales. It consists of almost one thousand pages of Hitler’s own turgid oratory, beginning with a speech which he delivered when he was still almost unknown in Munich in 1922, and ending with the world-shaking address of last June when he proclaimed the war against the Soviet Union. This is accompanied by a limited amount of comment by Mr. de Sales, pointing out the salient elements in Hitler’s psychology and the principal methods by which he rose to power in Germany and then set about the conquest of Europe. There could scarcely be a greater contrast than is furnished by the juxtaposition of the commentator’s fastidiously modeled style and thought, typically French in its classical lucidity, and the torrential rant and roar of Hitler’s speeches, prolix, repetitious, contradictory, yet following certain well-marked lines of demagogic appeal. Like the chorus in a Greek tragedy, Mr. de Sales shows the similarity between the unsuccessful methods of resistance to Hitler in Germany and in Europe, first there was neglect, then highbrow disdain, then efforts at appeasement. And finally there was extinction. w. H. C.