Thursday, April 01, 2010
The Erasure of Adolph Hitler’s Legacy
Germany—Visiting Germany and Switzerland during the Month of November was a real treat for me. Although I lived in Germany for 18 months of my military service (1968-1970) I did not travel to Berlin back then because of the red tape involved with travel to eastern Germany.
I love the German people, their language and culture. My memories of Germany are some of the most wonderful of my entire life. I made the trip to beautiful Berlin this time.
My interest in learning about World War Two was nothing insignificant. So much, violence, torture and mass murder needs careful examination. Europe was indeed a dangerous place during the reign of The Third Reich. Death and destruction was a constant visitor to anyone thought Europe. This was truly a holocaust for every man woman and child. Every family lost someone and so many families were totally wiped out by shooting and bombing.
What people fail to realize absolutely everyone suffered, not just the Jews.
What conditions could possibly cause this unbelievable catastrophe? Could they happen again? It really only a matter of when. Of Course Russia, Japan and China were also tangled into this mess and suffered as much or more..
I remember being horrified and saddened when I heard how the Russian soldiers that captured Berlin went on an orgy of non-stop rape of innocent women and children.
That kind of barbarism is redundant throughout word history. This is what we humans do to each other. It will happen again and again as long as there are humans. We can pretend we’ve evolved into a more civilized society but that’s just our optimism. Humans are wild and dangerous animals.
The despicable, fascist and cruel Adolph Hitler had a grand plan. Hitler wanted his own population of tightly controlled Arians to rule the world and erase all he felt was not pure. It became Germany’s worst nightmare. Even those loyal to Hitler suffered horrifically. National Socialism like all Socialism is a pure evil killer.
When the war ended American forces went to Obersalzberg in The Bravarian Alps and destroyed Hitler’s terrific retreat named The Berghof. Another nearby Hitler favorite, The Eagle’s Nest was somehow spared. It’s a wonderful place to visit and contemplate how and why evil world conquests were planned there.
Germany has to cope with a real embarrassment, Hitler worshipers exist in Germany. They also exist in the United States. They all have two things in common ignorance and hate. They don’t really understand just what Socialism or National Socialism is all about.
To discourage the Neo-Nazis Germany went on a destruction binge. They set out to destroy anything that could become a Nazi shrine. It the same time they deprive the world of the historical importance of these places.
If the neo-Nazis were better educated they’d know just how miserable Hitler made the German citizens. Germany would have been so much better off making museums out of places like the Fuherbunker, the Berghof and the Spandau Prison. The Nazi worshipers could use the education.
Thankfully there are places like Berlin’s Bendlerbloch and the Plötzensee Prison where Nazi style justice victimized members of the German resistance.
As someone who has been involved in the American justice system all of my adult life there is a serious lesson to learn from the People’s Court of the Third Reich. Sometimes American courts can mimic Nazi judicial tyranny. Are we better off without a death penalty?
To fully understand Hitler you must first admire his amazing accomplishments. He was a nobody that rose to the status of a world leader. What could drive such a man to become such a monster? How can charismatic politicians become such despots? How can we stop these monsters before they become powerful? Who will fill Hitler’s shoes and exceed his cruelty?
My beautiful friend Andrea shows you what's Left of the Spandau Prison near her home in Berlin.