I talked with my colleague Quentin Schultze and we decided there was something interesting going on. We’ve now been following the spread of the quotation for three years and will soon publish the article mentioned in the previous post. We’ve decided to keep up on the interesting spread of a fabricated quotation on this blog.
Here’s the situation as discussed on my German Propaganda Archive:
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”
“One should not as a rule reveal one’s secrets, since one does not know if and when one may need them again. The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.”