I partly agree with this statement, as in source D, the British Journalist is repeating Hitler’s exact words. The fact that these words were said while they were walking side by side indicates there was friendship between them, he was speaking to him as a companion. The only doubt in the reliability this source would be the fact that it was so strange for them to be friends as the journalist was British and Hitler was German. It maybe a genuine friendship or it could be Hitler’s way of getting false information (propaganda) across to the British people.
Or infact giving out false information which he would later deny ever saying if it looked like they could do damage to his status or posed a threat to what he was aiming to achieve. Source E, at first, seems to be the most reliable source of information, but its not until you read that it was published outside of Germany, this shows us that the author of the source went from being at a position of authority at the top, socialising with the Nazis including Goering, Himmler and a number of other leaders in the Reich Chancellery, to being near the bottom, either a fallout or just a general leaving by choice has occurred.
This means that if it was a fallout, the author, Hermann Rauschning, could’ve twisted the truth out of bitterness or hatred so that the Nazis would now be seen in a bad light. But, it was published outside of Germany, which could mean that it was the truth and because of the restrictions the Nazis put on the books that were published, it might have been all the truth, and the Nazis would not let it be published in Germany as they were scared people would find out the truth and they would look bad.
In both these sources, it is evident that the author has had strong connections with Hitler either at present or in the past, but both at the time just after the Reichstag fire. They both agree on one thing, who Hitler believed was responsible for the fire. In source E, it is suggested that Hitler knew that it was the National Socialist leadership who were ‘solely’ responsible for the fire, that he Hitler had known of the plan and had approved of it.
But, in source D, Hitler is claimed to have said, “This is a God given signal. If this fire, as I believe, turns out to be the handiwork of the Communists, then there is nothing that will stop us from crushing out the murder pest with an iron fist. ” This links back to the thought he may be misleading the public into blaming the Communists and believing it was them that caused the fire when infact him and all his close friends know the truth and culprit.
It seems as if Hitler is desperately praying for it to be the work of the Communists, but it seems a coincidence that it just happened to happen at exactly the same time when Hitler wanted power, it gave him a perfect opportunity to gain popularity and the perfect time to put his opponents in a bad light. Conclusion Overall, I think source D is the most reliable source as it is Hitler himself speaking, it is his exact words as he spoke them, whereas in source E, it maybe true but there is also a possibility it is just idle gossip.
Although these men were quite close to Hitler and high in rank, there is no significant proof that Hitler actually said this, it is just what these men say he said, There may be some truth in it, but if Hitler spoke them and they got passed on, it could’ve been done abet like Chinese whispers, where the truth was altered slightly, the truth twisted as each person was told. Because source D was written by a journalist, he could be very objective, so it is very reliable and as he is British, he was totally independent of the situation.