Immediately at the end of World War One, a small political group started its life in Munich – the German Workers’ Party (Deutsche Arbeiterpartei). It was an off-shoot of the previously very influential Pan-German Fatherland Party. The German Workers’ Party was founded by Anton Drexler, a toolmaker, and Dietrich Eckhart, a journalist. On September 19th, 1919, Adolf Hitler became the party’s seventh member. The German Workers’ Party held its first public meeting on February 24th 1920 in a Munich beer hall. It was at this meeting that Hitler stated that the party had to adopt his ‘25 Points’, which later became known as the ‘Twenty Five Points Programme’. In April 1920, the name of the party was changed to National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP).
“The program of the German Workers’ Party is limited as to period. The leaders have no intention, once the aims announced in it have been achieved, of setting up fresh ones, merely in order to increase the discontent of the masses artificially, and so ensure the continued existence of the party.
1. We demand the union of all Germans to form a Great Germany on the basis of the right of self-determination enjoyed by nations.
2. We demand equality of rights for the German people in its dealings with other nations, and abolition of the peace treaties of Versailles and Saint-Germain.
3. We demand land and territory (colonies) for the nourishment of our people and for settling our excess population.
4. None but members of the nation may be citizens of the state. None but those of German blood, whatever their creed, may be members of the nation. No Jew, therefore, may be a member of the nation.
5. Anyone who is not a citizen of the state may live in Germany only as a guest and must be regarded as being subject to foreign laws.
6. The right of voting on the leadership and legislation is to be enjoyed by the state alone. We demand therefore that all official appointments, of whatever kind, whether in the Reich, in the country, or in the small localities, shall be granted to citizens of the state alone. We oppose the corrupting custom of Parliament of filling posts merely with a view to party considerations, and without reference to character or capacity.
7. We demand that the state shall make it its first duty to promote the industry and livelihood of citizens of the state. If it is not possible to nourish the entire population of the state, foreign nationals (non-citizens of the state) must be excluded from the Reich.
8. All non-German immigration must be prevented.
9. All citizens of the state shall be equal as regards to rights and duties.
10. It must be the duty of each citizen of the state to work with his mind and his body. The activities of the individual may not clash with the interests of the whole, but must proceed within the frame of the community and be for the general good. We demand therefore:
11. Abolition of incomes unearned by work.
12. In view of the enormous sacrifice of life and property demanded of a nation by war, personal enrichment due to a war must be regarded as a crime against the nation. We demand therefore ruthless confiscation of all war gains.
13. We demand nationalisation of all businesses.
14. We demand that the profits from wholesale trade shall be shared.
15. We demand extensive development of provision for old age.
16. We demand creation and maintenance of a healthy middle class, immediate communalisation of wholesale business premises, and their lease at a cheap rate to small traders, and that extreme consideration shall be shown to all small purveyors to the state, district authorities, and smaller localities.
17. We demand land reform suitable to our national requirements.
18. We demand ruthless prosecution of those whose activities are injurious to the common interest. Sordid criminals against the nation, usurers, profiteers, etc. must be punished with death, whatever their creed or race.
19. We demand that the Roman Law, which serves the materialistic world order, shall be replaced by a legal system for all Germany.
20. With the aim of opening to every capable and industrious German the possibility of higher education and of thus obtaining advancement, the state must consider a thorough reconstruction of our national system of education.
21. The state must see to raising the standards of health in the nation by protecting mothers and infants, prohibiting child labour, increasing bodily efficiency by obligatory gymnastics and sports laid down by law, and by extensive support of clubs engaged in the bodily development of the young.
22. We demand abolition of a paid army and formation of the national army.
23. We demand legal warfare against conscious political lying and its dissemination in the press. In order to facilitate creation of a national press we demand: a) that all editors of newspapers and their assistants, employing the German language, must be members of the nation b) that special permission from the state shall be necessary before non-German newspapers may appear. These are not necessarily printed in the German language c) that non-Germans shall be prohibited by law from participation financially in or influencing German newspapers. It must be forbidden to publish papers which do not conduce to the national welfare. We demand legal prosecution of all tendencies in art and literature of a kind likely to disintegrate our life as a nation, and the suppression of institutions which militate against the requirements above-mentioned.
24. We demand liberty for all religious denominations in the state, so far as they are not a danger to it and do not militate against the moral feelings of the German race. The party as such stands for Positive Christianity, but does not bind itself in the matter of creed to any particular confession. It combats the Jewish-materialistic spirit within us and without us.
25. That all the foregoing may be realised we demand the creation of a strong central power of the state; unquestioned authority of the politically centralised Parliament over the entire Reich and its organisations; and formation of chambers for classes and occupations for the purpose of carrying out the general laws promulgated by the Reich in various states of the confederation.
The leaders of the party swear to go straight forward – if necessary to sacrifice their lives – in securing fulfilment of the foregoing points.”