>>It is of course true that millions of other people lost their lives in this conflict, often in unprecedentedly horrible ways, and that new tyrannies were imposed on the countries—Poland, Czechoslovakia and China most notably—that had been the pretexts for a war against fascism. But is this not to think in the short term? Unless or until Nazism had been vanquished, millions of people were most certainly going to be either massacred or enslaved in any case.<< Christopher Hitchens: A War Worth Fighting
>>The Final Solution, as the Nazis called it, was originally only one of the exterminatory projects to be implemented after a victorious war against the Soviet Union. Had things gone the way that Hitler, Himmler, and Göring expected, German forces would have implemented a Hunger Plan in the Soviet Union in the winter of 1941–1942. As Ukrainian and south Russian agricultural products were diverted to Germany, some 30 million people in Belarus, northern Russia, and Soviet cities were to be starved to death. The Hunger Plan was only a prelude to Generalplan Ost, the colonization plan for the western Soviet Union, which foresaw the elimination of some 50 million people. (…)
At a time when German resistance to Hitler receives attention in the mass media, it is worth recalling that some participants in the July 1944 plot to kill Hitler were right at the center of mass killing policies: Arthur Nebe, for example, who commanded Einsatzgruppe B in the killing fields of Belarus during the first wave of the Holocaust in 1941; or Eduard Wagner, the quartermaster general of the Wehrmacht, who wrote a cheery letter to his wife about the need to deny food to the starving millions of Leningrad.<< The New York Review of Books: Holocaust: The Ignored Reality. Also contains often neglected facts about the Great Terror in the Soviet Union, the geographics of World War II’s mass killings, and about the Expulsion of Germans (“Vertreibung”) after the war:
>>Although the expulsions were a case of collective responsibility, and involved hideous treatment, mortality rates among German civilians—some 600,000 out of 12 million—were relatively low when compared to the other events discussed here. Caught up in the end of a horrible war fought in their name, and then by an Allied consensus in favor of border changes and deportation, these Germans were not victims of a calculated Stalinist killing policy comparable to the Terror or the famine.<< (Hat Tip: Will)
It’s the little things, the continuing sequence of unspeakable episodes which inside Germany most people don`t seem to mind and outside Germany hardly anybody will ever notice.
That`s why I`m telling. For example the attempted ban of Anti-Nazi stickers just recently. A local court ruled that stickers showing a cancelled Hakenkreuz or somebody throwing a Hakenkreuz into the trash bin were in fact illegal as they are showing Nazi symbols.
This was not a joke – and it went on. Inspired by this decision – and before a higher court eventually scrapped it – judges in Tübingen and München ruled alike. Attendants to political events were arrested for wearing obviously antifascist stickers. A book was almost put on the index because it showed members of Hizbollah presenting the “German salute” – right underneath the title line: “Critical Theory against Post-Nazism and Islamism”.
These rulings were overtly directed against antifascists – the antifascists were directly blamed for keeping these symbols alive.
And then, having taken a deep breath as thanks to decades of Western occupation none of these decisions could stand an appeal, then you find out that the same prosecutor`s office is dealing with an SS massacre in World War II where they just can`t find any real evidence for cruelty or base motives. On August 12, 1944, the soldiers had poured gas on children and set them on fire.
(first posted at the Trots’)
Dresden, February 13th – this is Germans, pro-Germans and Anti-Germans all in one spot. While the ordinary citizens try to hide their historical revisionism under a disgusting ceremony of collective mourning for the slightly exaggerated number of victims of 1945’s bombing, the Nazis march for revenge of an even more exaggerated number of victims and propagate today’s struggle against ‘Anglo-American bombing terror’, a slogan they directly took from East German history books who had directly if not openly copied the original Nazi language.
With all this madness marching, guarded by 2,000 cops, the Antifa gathers to kick everyone’s ass at the same time. When in the morning politicians of Saxony’s government as well as of the Left Party and the Nazi party drop their chaplets at a Thing style forest cemetery which features Dresden among the names of Nazi concentration camps – 200 antifascists have a small but loud liberation party waving flags of the Allied forces of WWII and singing “Ihr habt den Krieg verloren!”
When in the evening 5,000 “good Dresden people” are in the streets because they don’t want the Nazis to “misappropriate and abuse the righteous mourning” while these Nazis meet in large numbers at the starting point of their march saying the same about ’45 and just looking different – 2,000 antifascists form a demonstration (“Deconstruct!”) designed to smash the police line around the Nazis and block the Nazi march.
Which actually happens, to the sound of “Ten German Bombers” from the speakers and “Deutsche Täter sind keine Opfer” from the shouting Antifa. The police line collapses in a violent clash, small groups of antifascists diffuse through the city and concentrate right on the Nazi marching route forming a sitting blockade.
Unlike other German cities like Berlin, Dresden has not yet managed to incorporate antifascism into official revisionist politics which is definitely one of the Antifa’s biggest successes of the last years. Insisting on Germans and not only the Nazi elite as the mass murdering collective and therefore not as innocent victims of Allied bomber squads, the Antifa cannot be integrated into the “culture of remembrance” celebrated by all political parties and the majority of politically active inhabitants of Dresden.
Thus, the antifascist activities attract more people each year while even radicalizing their message. Traditionalists and beer-punks do not dominate the appearance anymore, Anti-German slogans, music and appearance have taken over.
(For those who understand German: the mobilization video for this year’s protest, 80 MB, 15 min)
(first posted at the Trots’)
Currently, Germans (especially but not only left-wing Germans) fight against bugs. They line up mass movements, produce mass media cover stories, and devote entire political parties to what appears to be nothing more than insecticide.
The species they’re after is the locust.
Der SPIEGEL cover, December 2006: “The Greed of Big Money: Finance-Investors Grasp at German Businesses.”
The obsession with equating a sort of businessmen with vermins repudiates everything Germans continuously say about their enormous sensitivity towards any form of Nazi propaganda. As this phenomenon hardly had any time out ever since then though previously it wasn’t about locusts but more about more typical blood-sucking insects like the ones depicted here on the cover Germany’s most important labor union magazine in 2005:
“US-Firms in Germany: The (Blood-) Suckers”
First to identify hedge-fonds with locusts in Germany was Franz Müntefering in 2005, at that time serving as party chairman of the ruling Social Democrats.
Even though his thoughts haven’t become official politics so far they are a media topic running wild. The term “Heuschrecke” isn’t even used with quotation marks anymore but is rather a common word by now.
Most disturbing is the fact that Germany’s Left Party engages in leading the fight. While there are quite some different voices in the party, the by far most popular representative, former SPD leader Oskar Lafontaine appears on stages together with former Anti-German semi-celebrity Jürgen Elsässer and calls for direct democracy, disobedience to the global US dictatorship, and battle against the “locusts” which means closing the German labor market and nationalizing the economy.
Just one week ago, Elsässer and Lafontaine joined the notorious traditional leftist cabaret of Dr. Seltsam close to Left Party’s headquarters in Berlin Mitte to deliver a flood of populism suited to win the traditionalist audience. Elsässer asked Lafontaine when he will fly to Teheran and meet with Ahmadinejad and Lafontaine answered that he would love to but so far the Iranians weren’t able to organize it. 9/11 conspiracy colportage “Loose Change” was advertised as well as Elsässer’s new book which actually is called “Attack of the Locusts”, subtitle: “The Destruction of Nations and Global War.”
In this book, Elsässer writes a program for Lafontaine and performs an exorcism on his own previous Anti-German attitudes. He accuses anti-nationalism which he used to propagate as a tool to destroy national states. He downplays the role of nationalism in Germany today and the importance of fighting Nazis. He directly links Anti-Germans to be allies of Neocon fascism therefore the real target of antifascist activity.
Almost if trying to fit my definition of conspirationism, Elsässer depicts social reality of the 70s and 80s as relatively harmonic and socialist while today things have changed because of the “alien invasion”. People “still believe they lead the life of good old times, as members of a verein or a congregation or a nation, integrated into families or a circle of friends. In reality they only vegetate as domesticated animals and labor rats in a planetary game of billions – distributors of fresh meat and blood for the total market and everlasting war.”
Regarding locusts, Elsässer writes:
>>Since the 70s, aliens started colonizing Earth. Other than traditional capitalists the extraterrestials do not live on skimming the surplus but on destroying the production of surplus. Swarms of locusts are devouring industrial enterprises all across the globe, spit out the human labor force in them and divest the disemboweled sceleton to the highest bidder – that is the source of their profit.<< Bernhard Schmid comments:
>>Actors are merely the “multinational financial marktes and the global financial marktes” or the “locusts” as Elsässer loves to call them. They deprive the “ordinary” capital that so far had preserved the fundaments of labor force reproduction – which is only true for some metropolitan areas and hardly for the Third World – of its material basis.
Elsässer thus dematerialises criticism on capitalism, he separates the object of his criticism from any social context. The attack of the “aliens” appears as the advance of a destructive force from outside into a previously working system. Such criticism on capitalism without reference to concrete social power relations would have seemed very strange to Marx whom Elsässer refers to all the time.<< In an interview with Jungle World, Elsässer said that it’s wrong to call his “locusts” metaphor close to Nazi propaganda as the Nazis never talked about locusts at all. This answer is an outrage even if they would have only gone on about rats and spiders, but it’s also wrong.
Besides many different examples, locusts appear in the most influential piece of Nazi propaganda there was, and at a crucial point. In the movie “Jud Süß” which 22 million Germans watched in cinema alone the Jewish main character is sentenced to death with the words: “Like locusts they come over our country.”
(first published at the Trots’)
I don’t know whether I’ll manage to keep up the rhythm of good things about Germany – bad things about Germany as there is so much more in the second category. But so far it works.
This time I’ll introduce a musical subculture which – while also harboring a majority of extreme sexists and thorough fascists – is one of the few scenes that features Anti-Germans. (Something about Anti-German Hip Hop coming up in another posting.) I’m talking about Breakcore and its huge variety of subgenres.
It’s pretty safe to say that the Anti-German contributions to the scene are among the most creative ones, that is, the ones with the most ecclecticistic approach to styles and samples as well as the ones most enjoyable for dancing (if you want to free the epileptic within you…)
Let’s begin with Lfo Demon who can be found on myspace and last.fm with dancefloor anthems like “Classwar Dynamite” or “The Skinhead broke my telephone”, culture clashs like “California unter alles”, as well as programmatic Hip Hop remixes like 5 3 9’s “Antideutsche Welle” (= “Anti-German wave” as a reaction the “Neue Deutsche Welle” recently proclaimed for the second time by nationalist rapper Fler). He’s also written a couple of texts about politics (“Fuck Old Europe”), the culture industry and the German beer tents.
Even more explicitly Anti-German already by name is Krautkillah Soundsystem who organized benefit gigs for the Anti-German weekly Jungle World. Though most of their stuff is quite incomprehensible for a Non-German as it’s using German vocal samples I can tell you it works as a giant relief for me. Unfortunately I can only link to the myspace-page of one of their DJs, Monty Cantsin who’s featuring the song “Krautkillah” loosely based on the track “Killah” by The Bug.
More outstanding Breakcore artists can be seen not as precisely Anti-German but as in several ways like-minded. I’ll just mention Istari Lasterfahrer of Sozalistischer Plattenbau who recorded Raggacore tracks against homophobia (“Me the faggot they are shot”, “To the battyman massive”) and the first breakcore track to positively feature GWB (“Angela Merkel 220 bpm”), the almighty Karl Marx Stadt and his Society Suckers of Resonance FM fame (listen to what he did to Britney Spears’ “Toxic” and the sheer mind-boggling ecstasy on “All I wanna do”), finally Cologne based band Bam Bam Babylon Bajasch who parody ragga clone style, f. e. in “One Love” where they sing about religious belief in general and about christian and rastafarian belief especially: “One Love, One Heap of Shit, sugarcoatin’ your hatred”.
(first posted at the Trots’)
Among the many devastating ideologies that originated in Germany one has only recently been identified, isolated and traced back to its source. Conspirationism, the ideological escalation of conspiracy theories took the major steps to its modern form among German aristocrats and nationalists.
Step one: In the 1780s, German bureaucrats and religious censors started attributing all the evils of “Frenchism”, that is, of the eruptions of absolutist and feudal order to a secret society called the Illuminati which had existed for a short period of time mostly among teachers and noblemen in Bavaria and Northern Germany. Soon after the French Revolution, a whole movement of counter-revolutionaries devoted themselves to the proof that there was a direct historical line from Satan to the Illuminati. They gained some influence with their “Wiener Zeitschrift” which became one of the major inspirations for the first modern conspirationism classic by the French cleric Auguste Barruel.
Step two: As a reaction to the more substantial threat German aristocracy faced in the revolution of 1848, noble stateservants of Prussia painted an even bigger picture than that of the bourgeois Illuminati trying to shake Absolutism. This time, they expanded the plot geographically and socially by accusing the British trading bourgeoisie of organizing a European workers’ revolt in order to destroy the entire social fabric of the continent, thus rendering it a cheap and easy to control market for Britain. Prussia actually sent agents to London to gather information about the democratic exilants there and put a couple their comrades to prison in 1850’s “Kommunistenprozeß” (Trial against Communists) in Cologne. Prussian arictocracy succeeded in convincing the King and most Germans of the sinister threat to their and every society against which only the incorruptible nobles could form any resistance. The military stayed in the hands of the reactionary aristocracy imprinting romantic nationalism, strict obedience and conspirationism into several generations of army recruits. German military became “the school of the nation”, as a popular proverb said. As both bourgeoisie and working class had been successfully accused of fraternazation with the enemy, both classes were from that time on seen as divided – consisting of a loyal and an illoyal fraction.
Step three: After 1871’s triumph over France which gave such a bad example to the world – especially to Japan – war time and post-war accumulation resulted in a short, but significant economical crisis which could hardly be blamed on foreign powers, even by conspirationists. This became not only the “Gründerzeit”, the founding epoch of Germany as a nation, but also of modern antisemitism as we unfortunaltely still know it today. Into the already established concept of a world-wide sinister plot using all the modern social classes against traditional society, German conspirationists introduced the Jews as the driving force behind the global conspiracy. The illoyal parts of the classes were now simply the Jewish workers and bourgeois, inciting revolts and spreading cultural decadence. Modern antisemitism couldn’t have developed its form without the previous establishment of a conspirationist concept.
As most readers of this blog probably know, the “International Jewish Conspiracy” became the core issue of the Nazis – and it’s safe to say it had been a core issue of many Germans already before. As antisemitism was outlawed after WWII and could only be expressed in less obvious forms as anti-zionism, we can’t properly tell how heavily German society is still influenced by conspirationism. But many modern day popular issues indicate a strong tradition. Whenever it’s about Israel, about foreign economic power (referred to in mass media and by leading politicians as “locusts”), about threats to “social peace” (the obedience of the loyal classes) you see conspirationism shining through.
I’ll give you some examples in upcoming postings as I’m coming across them all the time. I’m going to start translating my current book on the issue into English and have a separate blog for that purpose. If anybody can offer assistance I’d be glad about it.
(first posted at the Trots’)
>>During the World Cup, the Anti-Germans had a hard time as millions of ordinary Germans decorated their balconies in red, gold and black flags; even German dogs wore patriotic colours. At this month’s pro-Israeli demo, the Anti-Germans did get to wave a flag, however. The American one. Do they ever have any fun? “We don’t have much fun,” Dahlmann concedes. “But we are not ascetics. We drink beer and wine”.<<
Luke Harding, Guardian
>>Let’s imagine what our world would look like if George W. Bush really were a Nazi.
First, to the foreign policy:
* Guantanamo Bay would, of course, exist. However, it would be receiving constant new shipments of people, because the initial residents would all long since be dead — worked and starved to death, and then incinerated in crematoria or dumped in mass graves. Of course, no journalist or lawyer would be allowed on the premises. Except those who had criticized the Administration, and they would last no longer than the other prisoners.
* The new inmates from Guantanamo Bay — and the dozens of other camps like it — would have been swept up during raids in Iraq and Afghanistan, or in the United States. If they offered the slightest resistance, they would be shot on the spot. Once they were packed off into the transport planes, nobody would ever hear of them again. Their families would receive a postcard a few months later saying they “died in a work accident.”
* Iraq and Afghanistan would be filled with large factories producing consumer goods and materiel for the American war effort. The workers would live in secure camps next to the factories, would work 12-15 hours a day for no wages, and would receive food rations well below what they required to stay in good health. I don’t even need to mention that the oil would be shipped directly to the United States, and anyone who questioned why Iraqis were not being paid for it would be sent immediately to Guantanamo, if not simply executedon the spot.
* To deter insurgent attacks, the U.S. military would round up 50-100 civilians who lived near the site of any attack, line them up against a wall, shoot them. Their bodies would be allowed to rot in the sun for a few days to bring the message home, and then the U.S. military would announce the action and its justification in printed Arabic posters all over the city.
Now, to domestic affairs:
* Bush would be the unquestioned and absolute leader of the United States. There might still be a U.S. Congress, but it would be no more than a rubber-stamp, and a shift in power would be inconceivable. Bush would have a ruling philosophy called, let’s say, Bushism. Under this philosophy, persons of Arab descent would be viewed as inferior and harmful to the human race. They would be locked away in ghettos just outside major U.S. cities; anyone who left the ghetto without authorization would be shot on sight by government guards. Their property, jobs, and all civil rights would be stripped of them. Eventually, all of them, without a single exception, would be shipped to death factories and incinerated. As at Auschwitz, the crematoria would be so busy that their chimneys would have to be regularly unclogged of human fat deposits.
* There would be no Democratic Party. It would be an illegal organization, and most of its leaders would be long dead. There would only be the Bush Republican Party. Anyone who sought serious career advancement would have to join it. The press, the military, the economic elite, writers, the legal profession, and even the medical profession would all be required to accept basic principles of Bushism. Although prominent professionals might have some leeway to timidly criticize the party line or refuse to take part in discrimination, most would not have this option. If they openly criticized Bush, they would at a minimum lose their jobs, and might well be shipped off to Guantanamo or some similar place, never to be heard from again.
* Any media outlet that criticized Bush’s policies would promptly be shut down by a large, shadowy domestic security agency. Their presses and servers would be confiscated and destroyed by the government, and their editors shipped off to Guantanamo, probably after a brief show trial in which they confessed that they were traitors or spies who deserved nothing better. The public confessions would be secured by torture and threats against their remaining family members.<< (German Joys)