"A Big Lie"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: The first volume of Mein Kampf, subtitled, "Settling Accounts," while structurally following the development of Hitler's life, is indeed a settling of accounts by a man dangerously offended by all who oppose him. In the struggles of his inglorious youth, Hitler detected signs of a superior being, a being which he reveals frankly. His "habit of historical thinking," his hate for Marxism and Jewry, his faith in his own resources, and his lust for war and bloodshed are made evident in these pages. Making up the bulk of the book are ideas on almost every subject pertinent to his interest, one of his chief aims being to set the German people straight concerning the truth of the past as he sees it. Concerning the First World War, he declares that Germany fell not because of military weakness but because of false thinking perpetrated by the Jews and Marxists. They succeeded in their lies because the lies were big enough to be convincing:

. . . they proceeded on the sound principle that the magnitude of a lie always contains a certain factor of credibility, since the great masses of the people in the very bottom of their hearts tend to be corrupted rather than consciously and purposely evil, and that, therefore, . . . they more easily fall a victim to a big lie than to a little one. . . .