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Comments

Niko:

It was not the East Prussians ancient homeland? Then all Western historians on the subject must be wrong. My information indicates that East Prussia's native population consisted of the Baltic race of Prussians since the dawn of time. After the crusades, they had suffered heavy losses but they intermingled with immigrating Germans, Dutch, French Hugenotts, Poles and Lithuanians and built the modern State oF Prussia 750 years ago. If that is not an "ancient homeland" what is?

If this is "revisionist" history it might be in comparison to the many propaganda outlets by all participants during WW I and WW II. However, it is in full accord with today's historical writings of the postwar periods which are by nature less colored by wartime propaganda.

Niko, I have the feeling you would like to adhere to censorship if a certain post does not agree with your personal understanding of history. Too bad for you that we live in a free country and if anything, that my writings are only an affront to any dictator and violater of human rights. Please mark this page well for yourself.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Niko:

You also wrote," Mind you, the Jewish Holocaust like the Armenian Holocaust were "projects" invented and conducted by state entities in times of peace to mass-murder her own citizens. The expulsion of former Prussians and Sudetendeutschen was a completely different affair."

Sorry, but wrong again! The Jewish Holocaust was not planned during peace time but during the war (just like the expulsion of Germans from their Eastern provinces and the Sudentenland.)

Even more precise, the "Final Solution" (i. e., the "Holocaust") was planned by top Nazi officials during a top secret meeting at a Mansion near the Wannsee in Berlin in 1942. The war had been going well for Germany up until then and it was assumed that all traces of this hideous genocide could be hidden forever if Germany were to win the war.

I am sure you will find enough material on the subject in any library to substantiate my above mentioned, historical facts.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Peter - You cannot argue with the history of the Teutonic Knights, and at the same time claim that the Islamic war for the extermination of Israel was an "much smaller event of criminal behavior" unrelated to the post-WWII expulsions. The Teutonic Knights were involved in the defense of the Holy Land against Islam as well. The order still exists as a Catholic charity in South Germany, but the Junker (ranchowner) aristocracy in Eastern Europe that made up its military base is no more. Today, a terrorist Palestinian state based on the collective and inheritable right of return as the terrorists claim it would be the new Sudetenland, and if the terrorists would get it all hell might break loose. As I said, let's never open the bottle of Munich again.

Niko -

Actually, dividing Europe up into ethnical zones is one of the major sources of unrest that plagued Europe for centuries.

Thanks to the European Union, most border disputes are now obsolete, but the dispute about Peters hometown is not. Since the Baltics came in, Königsberg aka Kaliningrad is a Russian enclave in the EU and NATO, such as it had been a German enclave in Poland between WWI and WWII. What's your proposal to resolve this one?

For those who have an interest in Prussia's original cultural and historic roots, this is an excellent, albeit short website:

http://www.alphalink.com.au/~wolf/prussia/main.htm

Also, you may want to take a look at the famous historian, Dr. Alfred de Zayas, and his take on the genocide in the Eastern Provinces of Germany:

http://www.meaus.com/Expulsion_of_Germans.html

We started this discussion to find out why young Germans are so hostile against the U.S. The reasons are twofold: 1, They have been brainwashed by a strong leftist movement in Germany that arose durng the 1960ies (as well as in the U.S.) and after the re-unification with Communist East Germany. 2. They have been constantly flooded by Germans themselves with guilt about the Holocaust and other German WW II crimes although their generation could not be linked to any of it.

This has made them very critical of the U.S. who used to be their model of fairness and justice.

As we can see of some of the anwers to my historical findings of major war crimes by the USSR, there are still too many amongst us to refuse to reject those crimes but rather try to excuse them by producing a relativity again .... to German war crimes even if "that dog won't hunt" in any criminal, national or international court.

It is this double standard of justice which infuriates the young people in Germany and it is justified. That is why they protested our preemptive strike in Iraq while the peremptive strikes by the German Kaiser and by Hitler against Russia were totally condemned by us.

Personally speaking, I am just as apalled as any American at this German ingratitude toward us and I am in total disagreement with their political stance. Moreover, I am concerned that Germany might turn totally Socialist (Marxist) after while.

My remaining interest is that the genocide by the Red Army in Germany is not forgotten and that better arrangements can be made for the original population of the territories in question. This does in no way detract from the unique suffering of people who died in the Holocaust. Moreover, there is not even any direct historic connection between the two.

So far, as the expulsion of Germans goes, it carries its own unique characteristics in that it was the largest ethnic cleansing in the history of the world.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Peter writes -
---------------------
You also wrote," Mind you, the Jewish Holocaust like the Armenian Holocaust were "projects" invented and conducted by state entities in times of peace to mass-murder her own citizens. The expulsion of former Prussians and Sudetendeutschen was a completely different affair."

Sorry, but wrong again! The Jewish Holocaust was not planned during peace time but during the war (just like the expulsion of Germans from their Eastern provinces and the Sudentenland.)

Even more precise, the "Final Solution" (i. e., the "Holocaust") was planned by top Nazi officials during a top secret meeting at a Mansion near the Wannsee in Berlin in 1942. The war had been going well for Germany up until then and it was assumed that all traces of this hideous genocide could be hidden forever if Germany were to win the war.

I am sure you will find enough material on the subject in any library to substantiate my above mentioned, historical facts.
-----------------------------------------

"Historical facts" indeed

In your version Peter the Final Solution to the Jewish question was all planned and began with the Wannsee conference in 1942

Why don't you check out a few historical facts - like get out your no doubt well thumbed copy of mein kampf and see what der fucker said about the jews in that book

or maybe consider the einsatzgruppen and their actions in Russia from june 1941

Or maybe the restrictive measures in Germany before the war - or in Poland from 1939

lets review a bit...

http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/timeline/camps.htm

In the beginning of the systematic mass murder of Jews, Nazis used mobile killing squads called Einsatzgruppen. The Einsatzgruppen consisted of four units of between 500 and 900 men each which followed the invading German troops into the Soviet Union. By the time Himmler ordered a halt to the shooting in the fall of 1942, they had murdered approximately 1,500,000 Jews. The death camps proved to be a better, faster, less personal method for killing Jews, one that would spare the shooters, not the victims, emotional anguish.

In September 1941, the Nazis began using gassing vans--trucks loaded with groups of people who were locked in and asphyxiated by carbon monoxide. These vans were used until the completion of the first death camp, Chelmno, which began operations in late 1941.

----------whats that? 1941 murders?


THEN came Wannsee - where the Nazi's refined their killing methods

Your opinion that the mass killing of the jews was not a Nazi plan all along but rather a product of the wartime actions of the Germans is yet another whitewash

Here is your plan just to inform any unsuspecting person where this is all leading...

- Dresden was as bad as Aushwitz
- Harris is the same as Himmler
- the 12M germans expelled from East Prussia after WW2 are victims on the "same scale" as the 11M murdered in the Holocaust
- the death camps were a product of wartime excess, just like the bombing of say Dresden...


Am I leaving anything out?

Oh yes - I am not jewish just to let you know

Pogue Mahone
12 St James Gate
Dublin, Ireland

Pogue:

This play on words and taking the original text so as to twist the meaning of it just won't do. I have gone through the hard school of Nazi and Commie agitprop and you are not going to change things to set me up as an unfeeling monster who ignored or belittled the Holocaust. I have suffered a horrendous fate myself so I have deep sympathies for all victims of any war!

1. My stated facts are not "my opnion" but historical facts. Please recheck them at your convenience.

2. I never "compared Dresden to Auschwitz" but the mindset of Harris and Himmler are pretty damn close since both had a plan to estinguish an entire people.

3.I did not compare the 12 Million expelled Germans with the 11 Millions murdered in the Holocaust. What I said was, that some justice has been applied to the henchmen of the Holocaust while the 2.8 Million German murdered victims of Soviet genocide have been practically ignored.

As I htink you need quite an additional amount of info on the world's genocides and democides during the 20th century, I have stated below for your convenience an excellent website address:

http://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/20TH.HTM

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

@Peter

"We started this discussion to find out why young Germans are so hostile against the U.S. The reasons are twofold: 1, They have been brainwashed by a strong leftist movement in Germany that arose durng the 1960ies (as well as in the U.S.) and after the re-unification with Communist East Germany. 2. They have been constantly flooded by Germans themselves with guilt about the Holocaust and other German WW II crimes although their generation could not be linked to any of it."

I would like to direct more attendtion to the points about the escalating hostility of the Germans to the US.

I agree with your point #1 completely. Germany's media gains great quantities of material and is also a great beneficiary of constant American complaining about it's own history and self image. From issues to due with slavery, treatment of Indians and Immigrants, Racism, to politicians , etc, etc. There are plenty of nihlists in the US! The media in the USA is a gigantic beast with it's own agenda. One need only to thank Michael Moore for helping the German and American left: Farenheit 9/11 (documentary) played the evening before the American election. So, German leftists need not thank themselves necessarily, they have also had a huge helping hand from America. World Revolution!

Additionally, Germany had Marx and ignored/replaced many other anglo enlightened philosophers of the lassie faire belief. von Mises and von Hayek also left Austria where their teachings were not gaining any ground. Marx was a philosopher politician, whilst Hayek more of an academic.

Also, Germany was innondated (and the US to a lesser degree) with KGB and Stasi agents who financed, supported and caused strife in many countries. 1968 could be one of their greatest successes.

Additionally, as Russia no longer has a free press, it is not producing any material that could possibily be digested and rebranded in the German market.

As far as you raise point #2, I haven't seen it myself, but I wasn't educated here either. But I must stress that I NEVER mentioned or spoke with German's about WWII. I often felt that it would have been inappropriate. I should have realised that this would not have been reciprocated to me.

Around the time of the invasion of Iraq, which I supported and still do, I would hear things like "all of the recent wars have been started by the USA." Furthermore, finding opposition to the war was easy, but I never heard a single viable alternative. It is as if they have been truly brainwashed that all "war is bad." Ironcally, wasn't it a Prussian who said that "war is just a continuation of politics by different means."

What I often find completely hypocritical about Germans and the Holocaust is that they have first hand experience with the powers of a dictator, but they have never done so much as a thing to stop them anywhere, anytime since 1945. I often heard "but there are so many other dictators around the world," this is nihilsm at its worst...

Of course, one of the reasons we aren't hearing any anti- russian and chinese commentary is the fact that Schroeder expects great business from the chinese. He doesn't realize that it is mostly one way though. The Russians are providing the Oil and Gas for the country and they have to be nice not to upset them. That could eventually result in the spigot being turned off? Talk about appeasement at the expense of their former best friends(America).

I don’t want to get on a rage here, but…….
The Socialists, former PDS leaning, heel clicking “Leaders of Europe” are now Goose stepping arm in arm together to enslave the new European democracies into their diminishing economic quagmire. The revolutionaries Schroeder/Fischer, together with “King” Chirac and the opportunistic Putin are trying to reset the old Pinball game that the U.S. has forced into Tilt mode for the last 58 years. They believe that their anti-American rhetoric will show the world that it is better to be dominated by the old aristocratic class conscious ruling elite, which will let them eat cake, than being able to determine their own destiny by setting their own agendas, laws and purpose. Their goal is so transparent that it would have to anticipate a great amount of stupidity on the part of the former Eastern block countries not to notice their true intent. Gone would be self-determination, freedom of speech and liberties associated with the normal democratic concept. The only purpose would be to milk these new countries for their Tax Euros and to be indoctrinated into the socialist melting pot that is called the EU ?
The “old Europeans “have shown time and time again, that their goal is to create different classes within their societies. The Master race concept was a failure and reinstituting it won’t work again this time around. The Germans for instance, want to have someone else work for them while they can collect the ample Government subsidy, just like it should be awarded to these Super humans. They determined to abandon Atomic Energy, only to encourage other countries to build new reactors from which they can purchase cheap energy. They will do anything to show the world that they are ecologically pure and socially just.
Well, History does have a way of repeating itself, it won’t work this time either. The idea of taking over Europe without firing a shot to create Lebensraum has hurdles that neither Chirac or his new Komrades: Schroeder, Fischer and Putin will be able to overcome. To bank on the stupidity of others for your own gain has always been futile.
Of course this is only my opinion and I could be wrong.

Peter,
You comment
"That is why they protested our preemptive strike in Iraq while the peremptive strikes by the German Kaiser and by Hitler against Russia were totally condemned by us."

It sounds like you are equating those three actions.

Indeed Niko - just what I have been pointing out

And no Peter - you didn't compare Dresden to Auchwitz specifically

What you are doing is saying Harris and the RAF are the same as Himmler and the SS

So in effect you ARE saying Dresden is like Auchwitz

You just don't want to come out and say what you think so you are dancing around it and working to get agreement from others with your Dresdeners as victims of the war just the same as any other victims idea

And once you have this agreement you can build upon it - that is the camels nose under the tent

I for one am well familiar with this sort of thing, nothing original about any of it

It would be most interesting to read any statements by Sir Arthur Harris advocating the extermination of the German people.

Instead he made the following statement in his book "Bomber Command":

In spite of all that happened at Hamburg, bombing proved a comparatively humane method. For one thing, it saved the flower of the youth of this country and of our allies from being mown down by the military in the field, as it was in Flanders in the war of 1914-1918. But the point is often made that bombing is specially wicked because it causes casualties among civilians. This is true, but then all wars have caused casualties among civilians. For instance, after the last war the British Government issued a White Paper in which it was estimated that our blockade of Germany had caused nearly 800,000 deaths-naturally these were mainly of women and children and old people because at all costs the enemy had had to keep his fighting men adequately fed, so that most of what food there was went to them. This was a death-rate much in excess of the ambition of even the most ruthless exponents of air frightfulness. It is not easy to estimate what in effect were the casualties caused by allied bombing in Germany because the German records were incomplete and often unreliable, but the Americans have put the number of deaths at 305,000. There is no estimate of how many of these were women and children, but there was no reason why bombing, like the blockade, should fall most heavily on women and children; on the contrary, the Germans carried out large schemes of evacuation, especially of children, from the main industrial cities.

Whenever the fact that our aircraft occasionally killed women and children is cast in my teeth I always produce this example of the blockade, although there are endless others to be got from the wars of the past. I never forget, as so many do, that in all normal warfare of the past, and of the not distant past, it was the common practice to besiege cities and, if they refused to surrender when called upon with due formality to do so, every living thing in them was in the end put to the sword. Even in the more civilized times of today the siege of cities, accompanied by the bombardment of the city as a whole, is still a normal practice; in no circumstances were women and children allowed to pass out of the city, because their presence in it and their consumption of food would inevitably hasten the end of the siege. And as to bombardment, what city in what war has ever failed to receive the maximum bombardment from all enemy artillery within range so long as it has continued resistance?

Mike:

I know there is a great temptation to create an atmosphere of my "revisionist thinking" about some of the guilt of Allied goverments regarding war crimes during WW II.

The reason must be that one either feels "right or wrong my country" which is acceptable although not wise or, one has not taken the time to read all available information on a certain event or, one has not been an eye witness to it.

In any case, it has nothing to do with my personal believe as a conservative Republican that we definitely did the right thing cleaning out the rats nest in Iraq.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Pogue:

You wrote "You just don't want to come out and say what you think so you are dancing around it and working to get agreement from others with your Dresdeners as victims of the war just the same as any other victims idea"

No matter how often you try to misquote me in order to demonize my simple message it won't work.

I do not compare Dresden to the Holocaust and I never have. I was just showing that Harris was just as much a mass murderer in his own mind as Himmler, when he opposed American objections to his fire bombings by more or less saying that Germans deserved their fate even if Americans refused to participate in it.

I was addressing the similarity of mind where Himmler's insanity rationalized Jews to be racially inferior and guilty of adherence to Bolshevism and Harris thought Germans to be on a "similar" level with the Nazis and therefore equally ready for extermination. No matter if one killed only 750,000 and the other 11 Million innocent civilians, they both would be incarcerated for life by any world court today along with plenty of Nazis, Bolsheviks and other, similar thinking folks. Harris certainly did not deserve the erection of his statue in his honor in England only some years ago.

I know you disagree but that's the way most folks would look at him if they new all the facts about the man.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Ambrose has quoted from Harris's own book above Peter - where do you get off telling us that "in his own mind" he was a mass murderer

This is the direct opposite of what he felt and wrote

It is in YOUR own mind that Harris and Himmler are the same

That is revisionist BS

The reason most people don't get worked up over the German ( and Japanese ) suffering during and after WW2 is that the German and Japanese governments initiated the same policies - bombing cities, displacing populations - while they were in control. Indeed they did much much worse

If I can offer you some analogy - what you seem to be seeking is some sympathy for a child rapist who is found strangled to death in his prison cell - a measure of sympathy on the "same scale" as that afforded to the rapists innocent victim

You can cite chapter and verse that what the rapist did was a crime and should have been, and was correctly, punished but what the guard or other convict did to the rapist was also a crime and should be punished - and you know - you may be legally correct

But I for one wouldn't waste a minute worrying about the misfortune of said rapist or the injustice of his demise

Pogue wrote:

"Why don't you check out a few historical facts -like get out your no doubt well thumbed copy of mein kampf and see what der fucker said about the jews in that book"

I don't like your choice of language nor your political inference about me in that I must even own "a well thumbed copy of Mein Kampf".

You sure know how to become personal. I decided to answer your outrageous WW II "standard war time interpretations" of history as well as your hidden insults for the last time.

Again, you cannot stay with message. Of course, was anti Semitism present in Germany, especially open after 1938 (as I wrote quite a few posts before) Of course, remaining Jews had been removed either by the Gestapo or by their own choice since then from German public life.

However, there is an excellent British documentary film video ("The Wannsee Conference" online) available which re-creates the historic and secret "Wannsee meeting" by the Nazis under the leadership of SS General Heydrich (the "Butcher of Prague). It provides a full account as to how it came to the "Final Solution" or the Holocaust in the winter months of 1942. This film is entirely based upon captured, secret Nazi documents and minutes of this meeting. It again substantiates that this Holocaust offensive against Jews with its notorious death camps and ovens became a policy of extinction in the German 3. Reich in 1942. This is not to say that some execution of KZ inmates had not already started in a more sporadic fashion previously.

Pogue, I cannot honestly say that I enjoyed our exchanges on WW II history, even if we may find ourselves on the same page as Americans in our fight in Iraq.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

A "new light" for future German-Russian relations?

Schroeder's honeymoon with the Russian bear might not last too long. The Russian parliament (Duma) is just turning up the heat on re-deifying history's most effective mass murderer, Joseph Stalin. See below:

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/20050414/ap_on_re_eu/russia_stalin

The rather incompetent Schroeder might be in for a hard lesson while dancing with the still untamed Russian bear at the expense of our friendship.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Wolfinger:

I hate this to become a discusioon purely on bombing "mentalities".

As a matter of fact, the bombing had for most Germans (except Leftist) lost interest and is a closed and unchangeable chapter of history ever since Americans helped Germans out of the economic morass left by WW II.

What I have been discussing here was mainly the unresolved and unforgettable crime of expulsions of peoples by Joseph Stalin.

I am quite sure that "Sir" Arthur Harris knew how to cover his true tracks in his own book "Bomber Command".

I saw a discussion about him by American WW II Army Air Korps veterans on the History Channel and they had nothing but contempt for the man and his killing methods. German postwar documentaries on the subject dovetail with this American opinion.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Peter - you completely misrepresent the Wannsee confernence as the starting point for the Final Solution

Do the Einsatzgruppen and the gas vans that had already killed 1.5 MILLION ( sporadic you said? ) people before 1942 count????

Wannsee REFINED the process by which an existing policy would be carried forward more efficiently - thats it

It doesn't mark the "start" of the Holocaust - any more than the delivery of better ovens to Treblinka in say Jan 1943 would mark the "start" of its operation as a death camp

As for enjoyment of exchanges I can only say that based upon what you have written you seem to be a revisionist and apologist for nazi crimes - albeit of a minor order

Your not a full blown denier as far as I can tell - but you sure seem to minimize the enormity and uniqueness of the nazi crimes with this focus on the sufferings of the german victims

Truthfully anyone who seriously says Harris and Himmler are the same is a little off the bend imho

Very Truly,
Pogue Mahone
Dublin Ireland

It is most regretable that some of our correpondents (just very few) seem incapable of judging one crime without referring to another as an excuse.

Moreover, if one protests this slight of hand in discussing history one becomes automatically a "defender" of one crime over another. Needless to say, "but you are the one who started this type of defense?" This is the way to destroy a debate and turn it into a never ending argument by using the switch method instead of debating the original subject at hand.

If I would not know that some of us are not too well informed or educated, I would have laughed at any inference that I could be an "apologist" for dictators of any kind. My records show that I have been on the trail for unknown war crimes for over 50 years and nobody who has known me personally has ever thought of me in that manner.

However, I know a few thousand Leftists and propaganda writers in the world who would have loved to punch my lights out long ago :-)

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Pogue Mahone :
"If I can offer you some analogy - what you seem to be seeking is some sympathy for a child rapist who is found strangled to death in his prison cell - a measure of sympathy on the "same scale" as that afforded to the rapists innocent victim"
------------------------------------
That would be true if he would seek sympathy for Hitler and the Nazis. He never did this, you on the other hand are comparing the German civilians in Dresden to a rapist.


Pogue Mahone :

"But I for one wouldn't waste a minute worrying about the misfortune of said rapist or the injustice of his demise."

--------------------------------------

Of course not . If all Germans had been killed by firebombs you would not waste a minute worrying about their misfortune. After all they got what they deserved. Not for raping anybody, but for being German.

I read pp haase's comments and they each seem to contain the same soft shoed tap dance around the corner BS.
Then subsequent comments then seem to backtrack to recover, re-package, and re-purpose points to gloss over some previous ascertain. It's all drivel when one attempts to string it together.
pp- I recall you once indicated you had served under both german and US armies.
I am wondering if that was all at the same time, or spread out over a few years?
I am also wondering if you know this other similarly aged and fellow deutch émigré'?
http://www.washtimes.com/world/20040525-093747-2902r.htm

Very interesting and informed conversation per usual. Thanks to our gracious hosts and all participants.

Peter, you said, "My records show that I have been on the trail for unknown war crimes for over 50 years..."

That may be the way you feel, but truthfully I have never held, nor have I personally ever known anyone who has held that view. Never have I met one American who has expressed that sentiment against Germany or the German people. NEVER. Not even from my grandfather, aunts and uncles who faught in Europe, nor from my mothers neighbors who were held captive in brutal conditions in Bataan. Not one word of hate or anger or prejudice against the Germans or the Japanese can I remember being uttered in my lifetime from the lips of an American aquaintance.

I respect your opinion and your experience, but I must wonder if this dialogue does not just exist within your own mind.

I cannot get my mind around why Germans and Americans learned such different lessons from WWII, and the other attrocities in the history of man. Americans understand that this great capacity for evil lives in the heart of man. It is not an anamoly, or a freak accident, or a one off event. It is innate and it is evil. It does not belong to Germany, but to humanity. And where we find this flavor of hatred and tyranny, we must fight against it with every element of our power. Why do the free men of Germany who have experienced the results of blind hatred and tyranny first hand not stand beside us?

Tom Penn:

The hatred you find expressed here is one sided and mostly personally directed against me. From questoning my loyalty to America to suspecting me of being a "Nazi apologist".

What I have done is put my finger on a subject that has been swept under the rug in the world and needs to be aired from time to time. This subject is the Soviet expulsion and genocide of people of my homeland. The facts are well knon to all NATO allied goverments and guilt has been placed firmly by history at Stalin's door.

So why all the excitement and repeated attempts to widen the discussion by defending Allied bombing strategies which are of nobody's main concern at Germany or America anymore (except by German leftists.)?

It must be that some do not like the idea that Germans suffered too. That type of hateful thinking was excusable during the heat of war but not long after the last soldier or civilian on either side died in combat. It certainly does not make for a better world for our children to continue hate expressed in war crimes by a few and spread it over entire nations. This was precisely the thinking of Hitler and Stalin. If we want to be better, we should start acting like that now.

The totally injust concept of "collective guilt" has been used by warriers of the Dark and Middle Ages to kill off entire populations. I for one, as an American, am proud not to concur with that concept.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Niko,
thank you for this article. I find this piece also enlightening for this debate here:


"Die dunkle Seite des Krieges

Zu den modernen, "aufgeklärten" Formen des Dresden-Gedenkens gehört es, eigene Kriegsschuld einzugestehen, im gleichen Atemzug aber darauf hinzuweisen, dass die anderen auch Dreck am Stecken hätten. Das hinge damit zusammen, dass im Krieg jeder zum Tier wird (und dann nicht nur die Zootiere aller Länder gleichermaßen darunter leiden müssten). Nazis und Alliierte - das sei zu Kriegsende gar nicht mehr zu Unterscheiden gewesen. Oder: Die Deutschen hätten zwar angefangen, die Alliierten aber mit viel größerer Wucht zurückgeschlagen (was moralisch verwerflicher ist, darüber lässt sich dann trefflich streiten). "Wer Wind sät, wird Sturm ernten", ist ein Satz, den man oft, auch bei Linken, im Zusammenhang mit Dresden liest. Die ihn sagen, glauben eine Art Schuldgeständnis abzulegen; in Wirklichkeit handelt es sich aber um eine revisionistische Frechheit (Rudolf Augstein, der Chefredakteur des Spiegels, vertrat schon 1985 öffentlich die Meinung, Churchill hätte nach den Maßstäben des Nürnberger Kriegsverbrechertribunals hängen müssen.[ 25 ]) Deshalb, so die Dresdner Gesinnungs-PazifistInnen weiter, wäre Dresden ein Mahnmal gegen die Brutalität des Krieges, welches uns heute alle zur Versöhnung aufriefe. Wir Deutschen sind uns dieser Mahnung bewusst und sorgen seitdem weltweit für Frieden, sei es durch die Befreiung der Albaner aus den Serben-KZs oder durch unsere Spendenflut nach der großen Welle, welche unser Sextouristen-Paradies überschwemmt hat. Andere Völker hingegen, vor allem die Amis und die Juden in Israel, missachten aufs schändlichste den kategorischen Imperativ der Frauenkirche und führen brutale Kriege gegen die armen Irakis und Palästinenser - in diesem Kontext ist das offizielle Gedenkplakat[ 26 ] der Stadt Dresden für dieses Jahr zu verstehen, die antiamerikanischen Friedensbekundungen und die Auftritte israelischer FriedensaktivistInnen auf den Gedenkveranstaltungen der letzten Jahre in Dresden.[ 27 ]

Wie schon oben ausführlich belegt, kam es auf alliierter Seite nie zur massiven und bewussten Verletzung von internationalen Konventionen, nie wurde (von verständlichen, gerechtfertigten und überraschend wenigen Einzelaktionen abgesehen) Vergeltung und Rache geübt, immer ging es lediglich darum, die Angriffe der Deutschen abzuwehren und den Krieg zu gewinnen. Das einzige, was man heute den Alliierten vorwerfen kann, ist, dass sie viel zu lange ihre Appeasment-Politik betrieben und zu spät den Ernst der Lage erkannt haben, zu zögerlich schließlich in den Krieg gezogen sind, nach dem Krieg viel zu viel Nachsicht mit den Deutschen geübt und inzwischen fast alles vergessen zu haben scheinen.

... So schrieben sie dann in ihren zahlreichen Entgegnungen, u.a. unter dem Titel "Eine Träne für Dresden", dass der 2. Weltkrieg lediglich ein imperialistischer Krieg gewesen sei, die Alliierten um die "Vorherrschaft in Europa und der Welt" gekämpft hätten und sich in den Bombardierungen die "menschenverachtende Fratze des Imperialismus" gezeigt habe. Nationalismus sei die Erfindung der Herrschenden gewesen, um den Klassenkampf zu unterdrücken, das sei in Deutschland das gleiche wie in Israel. Um die Dresdner Opfer müsse man trauern, denn sie seien nicht als Faschisten gestorben, sondern als arme Menschen, zwischen die die Herrschenden einen Keil getrieben hätten. Die Brutalität der Alliierten nehme kein Ende. Genannt werden Vietnam, Korea und Irak, wo die USA das Verbrechen der "Zerstörung islamischer Heiligtümer im ganzen Land" begangen habe - da ist sie wieder, die Kulturlosigkeit. Die Deutschen hingegen seien gar nicht so schlecht, wie immer behauptet würde, sie hätten immerhin die Bauernkriege hervorgebracht, SpanienkämpferInnen gestellt sowie Marx und Engels gezeugt.[ 41 ]"

http://left-action.de/incipito/rechts.php?artikel=328


The whole article is really worth to read and to think about.

»Erst jetzt sind wir in der Lage, die Wirkung der Flächenbombardierung richtig einzuschätzen. Es ist klar, dass die deutsche Kriegswirtschaft sehr empfindlich getroffen wurde beim Versuch gegen das Bomber Command sich zu verteidigen. Insbesondere die Luftwaffe war unfähig die Ostfront zu verstärken, wegen der Notwendigkeit den Luftraum zu verteidigen. Dies hatte eine sehr schwerwiegende Wirkung auf den ganzen russischen Feldzug.« (»Only now are we able to measure precisely the effect of the carpet bombing of Germany. It's clear that the German war economy was very seriously affected by the effort of defending against Bomber Command. Specifically, the Luftwaffe was unable to reinforce the eastern front because of the need to defend Third Reich airspace. This had a very serious effect on the whole Russian campaign.«) Sebastian Cox, der offizielle Historiker der Royal Air Force, zitiert Air Vice-Marshal Tony Mason in der Sunday Times am 15. Februar 1998

"Die Bomberoffensive war ein entscheidendes Element für den Sieg der Alliierten." aus Richard Overy, Die Wurzeln des Sieges. Warum die Allierten den zweiten Weltkrieg gewannen. Reinbek bei Hamburg 2002

Tom Penn:

Older Germans stand firmly beside America but they are slowly dying off. The younger Germans have been undermined for decades by anti American leftists (as well as by some of our liberal media). Our press has ignored the problem. That is why we have now a rude awakening that some of our allies can no longer be totally relied upon.

I agree fully and wholeheartedly with the last paragraph of your post. At first, I was also nonplussed by a hostile German reaction to our Iraq war. But soon I had to remember that two generations had grown up between the American Berlin airlift and today. Those young folks did not live under Hitler and did not experience American help during the postwar period. They only barely remember our own "social revolution" during the Vietnam war.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

With this new kind of thinking Germans as victims, many Germans consider the US and Israel as the real evil in the world.

With this new kind of thinking, they discovered a way to change history and to change the view on the MidEastconflict and the US. The evil is Israel (the Palestinian terror is no longer the cause for Israel's action, it is a REaction on occupation). They compare the Palestinians from today with the Jews in Nazi Germany. This new mindset became stronger and stronger. Now people forgot what is good and evil. Terror became a reasonable method. so it is reasonable to ask: What did the US do that 9/11 happened. This all belongs together and has to do with the new German attitude: We learned our lessons. Did we? NO!

The other evil is the US: war criminal from WW II, North Korea, Vietnam... Iraq. Just the same. A high lack of historical knowledge made this possible.

Peter, nobody said that the next generation is Germany is GUILTY! Don't support this nonsense. We are RESPONSIBLE and that is already a great burden for each of us but necessary to prevent it again. But as I already wrote somewhere else: The wrong German answer to WW II is "no more war". This is not the correct answer to prevent a holocaust again. We should have learnt: no more hate. But when I read the daily newspapers, I find a lot of hate towards the US and israel. Strange, Israel is the result of the Holocaust and the US were the ones who stopped Nazi Germany. What happened to the gratefulness I learned after WW II towards the US at school and everywhere. I was taught to love Israel as a save place for jews. This is no longer common sense in Germany. There is no longer even friendship. You will get a wave of hate when you talk about Israel and the US. I find it ridiculous to see Schröder with Putin and with Arabic leaders smiling, laughing while Sharon and Bush are the most hatred people here. This is the result of the changed view on history. It belongs together.

Peter,
I agree with your last post. But even the older Germans like my generation are affected by this new attitude towards the US. Antisemtism was strong under Hitler and before. And it never disappeared but we never talked about it. So now you can hate Israel instead of Jews and can ask innocently: Can't I critizise Israel who is treating the Palestinians like Nazis?

A lot of the Dresden fuzz could be avoided if Germany had listened what President Bush said in the infamous flightsuit speech:

In the images of falling statues, we have witnessed the arrival of a new era. For a hundred of years of war, culminating in the nuclear age, military technology was designed and deployed to inflict casualties on an ever-growing scale. In defeating Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, Allied forces destroyed entire cities, while enemy leaders who started the conflict were safe until the final days. Military power was used to end a regime by breaking a nation.

Today, we have the greater power to free a nation by breaking a dangerous and aggressive regime. With new tactics and precision weapons, we can achieve military objectives without directing violence against civilians. No device of man can remove the tragedy from war; yet it is a great moral advance when the guilty have far more to fear from war than the innocent.

And I would like to add that the same information technology that makes Shock and Awe possible also provides the means to identify the next Munich Agreement before it is signed and preempt the consequences that are written between its lines.

Isn´t it interesting that a discussion about the new german foreign strategy mainly is about WWII.

many germans and most foreigners identify germany and german foreign policy with the time 60 years ago.

But times are changing as we all see today. I am born in the early 70s and WWII and the crimes of that period is history to know and to remember but nothing more than history. The same is true for the cold war.
The future for germany as most of my friends and people in my generation feal is the european integration and the EU. That includes close relation to Russia and the bordering regions.
The NATO is a organisation of the past without a future.
The US will leave Europe and has to focus more on Asia because there is where the future economic growth and potential conflicts are.

best regards

Peter

Peter,
you don't understand what history is. Every history is the responsibility for the future. You cannot learn your lessons, when you don't know and UNDERSTAND history. What about the holocaust victims and their families? They are not all dead. There live a few people with the knowledge about it and being often the only one in the family who survived. If you tell them: it is history, go on with your life, they would give you perhaps a better answer than I could do it.

Where is the end of history and where does politics begin? Don't you have any doubts about your opinion: it is just history? Born in the 70s and you have this view. What will the next generation know and think? Our son is born in the 80s and it is hard work to fight against such opinion as yours. It is mainstream at school.

Think about it again. There is no easy and quick answer to understand Nazi Germany and Holocaust and responsibility for it.

Ausführlich schildert Salomon Shapiro seine Eindrücke aus Braunschweig im November 1946: "Alle Deutschen in Braunschweig … behaupten, sie seine gegen die Nazis und stets Freunde der Juden gewesen." Shapiro berichtet über Fälle, in denen als "Beweis" offensichtliche Lügengeschichten aufgetischt wurden. "Es heißt, dass die jüdische Gemeinde das jüdische Vermögen zurückbekommen werde. Es ist kein Wunder, dass jeder Deutsche jetzt Verbindung zur jüdischen Gemeinde gehabt haben will."

http://www.frankfurterrundschau.de/ressorts/kultur_und_medien/medien/?cnt=661860


Obviously there were already no Nazis in 1946.

Guter Artikel von Krönig!
Vielleicht wurde ein zweites 9/11 verhindert, und trotzdem ist das Medieninteresse gering:


DIE ZEIT

16/2005

Dicht vor dem Desaster

Ein in London verurteilter Algerier war Teil eines terroristischen Komplottes, quer durch Europa mittels koordinierter Giftattacken Panik und Furcht zu verbreiten

Von Jürgen Krönig für ZEIT.de

Der Algerier Kamel Bourgass wurde am Mittwoch wegen terroristischer Verschwörung vor dem Londoner Gericht Old Bailey zu 17 Jahren Haft verurteilt. Bei seiner Festnahme vor drei Jahren in Manchester hatte er einen Polizisten erstochen und sitzt deshalb bereits wegen Mordes im Gefängnis. Das Ende des Prozesses, der unter Ausschluss von Öffentlichkeit und Medien ablief, erlaubt es den involvierten europäischen Sicherheitsorganen, erstmals die europäische Dimension jenes Plans zu enthüllen, in dem Kamel Bourgass verwickelt war.

Britische Polizei und Geheimdienst sagen, man habe dicht vor einem Desaster gestanden. Bourgass war Teil eines Komplottes von Al Qaeda, quer durch Europa mittels koordinierter Giftattacken Panik und Furcht zu verbreiten. Von "Waffen der Massenerregung" spricht Roland Jacguard vom Pariser Institut zur Beobachtung des internationalen Terrorismus. Rizin, eines der Gifte, das Bourgass und seine Mitstreiter selbst produzierten, ist als Substanz nicht zur Massenvernichtungswaffe geeignet. Doch britische Fahnder bei Interpol betonen, dass eine Reihe giftiger Substanzen wie Cyanidgas und diverse Chemikalien in Verbindung mit Sprengstoff an verschiedenen europäischen Orten für Anschläge verwendet werden sollten - etwa in der Nähe von Touristenattraktionen wie dem Eiffelturm und Big Ben, in der Pariser Metro und der Londoner U-Bahn, aber auch in Vororten und Einkaufszentren.

Ziel war es, Angst und Schrecken zu verbreiten und die Wirtschaftskraft europäischer Staaten zu unterminieren. In Al Qaedas Trainingslagern in Afghanistan lernten Bourgass und andere Jihadisten, Giftstoffe selbst herzustellen. Sie wurden dann in verschiedene europäische Länder geschickt, um dort Schläferzellen einzurichten - so in London und Manchester, in Lyon, Paris und Bratislava. Die berühmt berüchtigte Finsbury Park Moschee in London diente dabei als eines der Kommunikationszentren.

Im November 2002 alarmierte Frankreichs Polizei die britischen Behörden, dass mit Rabah Kadre die Schlüsselfigur eines algerisch-fundamentalistischen Terrornetzwerks nach London aufgebrochen sei, was man als Signal für die Attacke wertete. Kadre wurde in London verhaftet, während die französischen Fahnder bei einer Razzia vier seiner Mitstreiter in Paris festnahmen und dabei Rezepte für chemische Kampfstoffe sowie Schutzanzüge sicherstellten. Ron Noble, Interpols Generalsekretär, weist auf die frappierenden Parallelen zu den koordinierten Anschlägen in Amerika am 11. September 2001 hin. Auf Grund diverser Abhöraktionen auch der slowakischen Polizei rechnete man damals mit einer spektakulären Terroraktion, wusste aber nicht, wo und wann genau sie stattfinden werde.

Dass es letztlich gelang, die Anschläge zu vereiteln, verdankt man einem algerischen Überläufer, der Bourgass verriet. Nicht alle Giftstoffe, von denen manche auf Türgriffe von Autos, Fahrstühlen und Geschäften geschmiert werden sollten, wurden gefunden und sichergestellt. Auch räumen die Sicherheitsorgane in Großbritannien wie Frankreich ein, dass es weitere Terrorzellen gibt, die nicht ausgehoben wurden und die irgendwann losschlagen könnten.

Das Echo auf den Londoner Prozess, bei dem acht weitere Verdächtige wegen Mangels an Beweisen freigesprochen wurden, beleuchtet die Schwierigkeiten im Kampf gegen den Terror. Oft ist die Evidenz nicht ausreichend, um vor Gericht standzuhalten. Zumal abgehörte Telefonate nach britischem Recht vor Gericht nicht verwendet werden dürfen. Ein Teil der Medien nutzt dies dazu, die Existenz der Bedrohung selbst zu bezweifeln oder Regierung wie Sicherheitsorganen unlautere Motive zu unterstellen.

Die Debatte um den Irak-Krieg spielt da mit hinein. Kann etwas als nachträgliche Rechtfertigung für den Krieg gedeutet werden, wird es in Anti-Kriegskreisen nach Möglichkeit zurückgewiesen. Das wird besagte Medien auf der anderen Seite nicht davon abhalten, Regierung und Sicherheitsorgane mit schweren Vorwürfen zu überhäufen, sollte es zu einem Terrorakt kommen. Regierungen befinden sich in den kurzatmigen Mediendemokratien des Westens so in einer no win-Situation. So werden Regierungswarnungen vor Terroranschlägen regelmäßig als Versuch interpretiert, autoritäre Gesetz durchzudrücken oder eine härtere Gangart bei Asyl und Einwanderung einzuschlagen.

Hallo Gabi,

Das Thema dieser Diskussion lautet "Germany's Grand Strategy" die Ausrichtung deutscher Aussenpolitik in der Zukunft.

Meiner Meinung nach stellt sich die Zukunft deutscher Außenpolitik so da wie ich sie skiziert habe.
Ihr Thema betrifft die deutsche Vergangenheit und der Umgang mit den Verbrechen, die in den zwölf Jahren der NAZI Diktatur begangen wurden. Ich bin mir der Vergangenheit bewusst und habe mich auch sehr intensiv mit ihr beschäftigt. Ich denke auch nicht dass es erlaubt werden darf die Geschichte umzuschreiben. Daher halte ich auch nicht viel von dieser Opferdiskussion ( ich bin häufig in London und erlebe diese Diskussion z.B. dresden viel stärker als in Deutschland). Meine Verabscheung und Ablehnung dieser Verbrechen von vor sechzig Jahren ändert allerdings nichts an der Tatsache dass es Geschichte ist und die Gegenwart und Zukunft Deutschlands etwas anderes. Unser Verhältnis zu Israel oder zu den jüdischen Mitbürgern wird sicherlich immer etwas besonderes bleiben.

In answer to this "nice" post by PATO:

" pp- I recall you once indicated you had served under both german and US armies.
I am wondering if that was all at the same time, or spread out over a few years?
I am also wondering if you know this other similarly aged and fellow deutch émigré'?
http://www.washtimes.com/world/20040525-093747-2902r.htm"

Answers:

1.I served in the German Luftwaffe as a "Flakhelfer" (Flak Helper) near Leipzig as a 15 year old from 1943 until 1945 in the defense of my country.

2. I served in the US Army (MP) Military police overeas at Frankfurt/Main from 1955 until 1956 to protect America and Germany from the USSR.

3. It is my understanding that I would be entitled to some kind of German Government retirement compensation for the 7 years I worked in Germany as a German citizen after the war.

I do not wish to accept anything from Germany since it has agreed to the unlawful annexation of my home country, East Prussia. That act was criminal according to international law and I do not associate with Governments which are criminal.

Also, I have fortunately achieved complete financial independence in America and I am hardly to be compared to the German citizen who lives in Florida and is fleecing his own government.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Gabi, das hat die Entnazifizierung aber deutlich erleichtert, dass die alle keine Nazis gewesen sein wollten. Das war vielleicht unehrlich, aber wäre die Alternative besser gewesen ?
Ich hatte einen Großonkel , der war Mitglied in der NSDAP , der hat in Verhören der Engländer Hitler als den größten Führer aller Zeiten bezeichnet und den rechten Arm zum Gruß ausgestreckt. Eine zeitlang haben sie ihn ihhaftiert und dann laufen gelassen. Der hätte auch vor einem alliierten Erschießungskomando seine Meinung nicht geändert.
1955 ist er dann nach Parguay ausgewandert, aber ein überzeugter Nationalsozialist ist er bis zu seinem Tod 1993 geblieben.
Auf seine Weise war er ein ehrlicher und aufrichtiger Mann, nur hättest Du mit solchen Leuten keine rechtsstaatliche Demokratie aufbauen können.
Es war schon im Interesse Deutschlands und auch im Interesse der Besatzungsmächte besser, dass die überwiegende Mehrheit der Deutschen sich sofort nach Kriegsende von den Nazis distanziert hat.

Peter,
ich habe nicht gemerkt, daß du = Peter und nicht Peter Haase bist. So habe ich beide Postings vermischt. Entschuldigung.

Aber du hast doch selbst die Vergangenheit angesprochen und darauf habe ich geantwortet. Ich habe eben nur den einen Aspekt deiner Meinung aufgegriffen, den ich für falsch halte und habe meine Meinung geäußert. Was soll dann dein Hinweis, dies sei nicht Thema dieses Threads?

@ Gabi

Der Autor des Anfangsartikels stellt die Frage nach der zukünftigen deutschen Sicherheits- und Aussenpolitk.

Man kann vielleicht bedauern, dass der kalte Krieg vorbei ist und die Welt nicht mehr so einfach ist.
Aber so ist es numal gekommen und die Interessen Amerikas und Deutschlands stimmen nunmal nicht mehr hundertprozentig überein.
Deutschland wird seine Energie und Kraft in ein geeintes unabhängiges Europa stecken und stecken müssen. Während für die USA andere Regionen wichtiger werden bzw. schon sind.
Die NATO hat ihre Aufgaben seit dem Ende des kalten Krieges nicht gefunden und wird sie auch nicht mehr finden. Die USA suchen und wollen Koalitionen der Willigen und nicht die NATO ( was aus ihrer Sicht verständlich ist). Europa wird gar nicht anders können als eine gemeinsame und von der NATO unabhängige Verteidigungspolitik zu entwickeln.

Gabi:

Ich hoffe das Europa einig und bereit sein wird seine eigene Verteidigng der Freiheit zu uebernehmen. Im Lichte dauernder neuer technischer Entwicklungen ist der Preis einer Landesverteidigung ins astronomische gestiegen.

Ich glaube kaum das unser Land bereit ist diese Kosten des R&D (Research and Development) weiterhin fuer nicht mehr existierende Verbuendete in Europa kostenlos zu uebernehmen.

Es wird ein ziemlich rauhes Erwachen fuer Sozialisten in Europa geben, die bisher auf unsere Kosten nicht nur ihre Freiheit genossen haben sondern auch noch ein "Packet sozialer Sicherheiten" entwickelten die jeder Vernunft und Beschreibung spotten.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

There is a two word answer in response to all the suffering of the German people in WW2- too bad. I'm a Canadian whose uncle flew Spitfires and spent 5 or so years as a POW, and my grandfather fought in the trenches in WW1. I'm sure my relatives had better things to do with their lives than risk it fighting an enemy. Germany is as responsible as the other powers for WW1, which would have started eventually. However, obviously Germany is solely responsible for the start of WW2. Directly guilty are those who voted for National Socialism and whose who did nothing to stop Hitler's policies. The Nazis properly got credit for restoring Germany's economy. But how much of that was due to expropriation of the Jews and intimidating Stalin to send supplies,etc?

A point regarding the bombing of German cities. First, it was the only weapon available to attack German territory before the Allied invasion of Normandy. The goal of shattering German morale failed, as bombing London failed to shatter the British. But, besides destroying part of the German war production, it had the critical long term effect of bringing the war to the rear front population. All Germans were to suffer the effects of war. There was to be no further claims of a "stab in the back" myth when Hitler was defeated. The Germans lost the war utterly, and knew it because whole cities were destroyed. This is important because the Allied victory was completely desisive...we turned a viscious enemy dictatorship with its collaborating population into a democratic ally (second time's the charm). Sherman was hated by Southerners for his March to the Sea which destroyed vast areas of rebel territory, but in the long run it led to pleace because the South knew it was beaten and didn't burn with the idea that they could have won after all. They accepted defeat. Similarly, the Germans and Japanese were the most viscious militaristic nationalists who conducted medical experiments and mass murder, but now are democratic pacifists. It took saturation bombing and nukes to convince them war doesn't pay. On the whole it is better for Germans to be weak pacifists. We certainly wouldn't want to have to start bombing Dresden again. Which illustrates my point...the counter demonstrators against the NeoNazi protesters condemning the Allies for bombing Dresden taunted the skinheads with You Lost The War and They Should Bomb Again, paraphrased. When your enemy's present sympathyzer is left to complain about utter defeats, that is good.

Bomber Harris may be hated by a few, but the opinion of most Canadians and Americans is that Lemay and Harris helped kill an enemy who wanted to kill us. There was a documentary done by the CBC a few years ago that criticized Harris for being an inhuman killer. This didn't get anywhere with the Canadian public, who were dismissive when not angry at this revisionism. Most North Americans when presented with the idea that Allied air force generals are like Himmler would shake their heads at this revisionism.


In short, I can accept the notion that some Germans were victims during and after WW2, but on the whole they only have themselves to blame. Who else's fault is it? Germans could have revolted, or the General Staff could have staged a coup. Millions of soldiers and SS fought, millions of civilians helped move Jews in cattle cars.


The next time a German calls an American stupid, it would be fun to respond, But Germans after WW2 always said they knew nothing about the Holocaust and the camps, even though they saw Jews being taken away and the smell of burnt flesh from the chimney's. Who is stupid and ignorant?

North Americans don't hate Germans because we killed off the neccessary number in the war and National Socialism is no longer a threat. We can view them with amusement, rather than hate and fear them as we would if we hadn't been ruthless when we had to be, saving our troops' lives and establishing a decisive peace.

@Peter

"I do not wish to accept anything from Germany since it has agreed to the unlawful annexation of my home country, East Prussia. That act was criminal according to international law and I do not associate with Governments which are criminal."

I don't dispute that East Prussia is "your country," in the sense that you were born there, and I'm not taking sides on the matter one way or the other, but can you explain to us how the territory ever legitimately became part of Germany? After all, up until the 1100's the Slavs occupied all of what is now northern Germany, not to mention East Prussia, virtually up to the borders of Denmark. They were driven out and/or exterminated by conquest under the color of a "Crusade." How is it that it was "legitimate" for Germanic peoples to annex the territories by right of conquest, but not "legitimate" for another Slavic people, the Poles, to take them back? For that matter, shouldn't all of northern Germany be restored to the Slavs? In return they would get Alsace-Lorraine, annexed by Louis XIV in the 1600's in similarly illegal fashion.

PMB - excellent post and I can only add that a lot of us in North America, Britain and Austrailia do more than "shake our heads" when told that Harris = Himmler

So my mates Dad who flew bombers in WW2 under Harris is what - like an SS man???

Revolting

We seem to have narrowed things down however - the crime that deserves attention in Peter H's opinion is the destruction of East Prussia after WW2 - the deaths of X number and the expulsion of Y number of Germans from this area.

We can all agree that the policies instituted by the Red Army and the liberated populations of the area were not at all kind to these Germans

I hope we can all agree that the Germans brought this onto themselves with their behavior during the war

They voted for Hitler - they cheered his success - they grew fat and rich off the carcass of Poland from 1939-1945 - and they paid the price

But I can accept I am wrong Peter - maybe you are not any kind of revisionist

Lets hear it - what is your opinion of Hitler?

Just one answer is worth to bring forward to the latest cascade of "justifications" for the genocide of almost 3 Million German civilians in East Germany. Your reasons are precisely what Josph Stalin thought when he ordered their extermination. I hope you feel you are in good company.

As to those who are somwehat slow to get my drift, of course I hate Hitler even more than you can possibly imagine. In addition to ordering the genocide of Millions of innocent people, he caused the needless death of Millions of Soldiers of many nations (including those of Germany) and he betrayed the German people on a heretofore unknown scale of any national leader.

If Germans adored him in the beginning it was because they had not known who he was until it was much too late. The true nature of the man was not known to the common man on the street until the war had ended. Yes, some Communists and Jews were accused and arrested in public but were they guilty? Was it time to protest but if, how? The fear of the everpresent Gestapo had everyone in a firm grip. If you don't believe it, do your research.

The best proof for this truth was that Germans could not believe that their own country was involved in the death camps for years after the war. The denial was so strong that many thought the documentaries on the subject were done in Hollywood.

What remains puzzling (or not) is that Joseph Stalin had killed far more innocent civilians inside and ouside of the Soviet Union (i.e., approx. 35 Million.) Yet (fortunately) nobody dares to blame all the Russian people for him and his murderous KGB. Could it be that we are finding that some of us measure justice by using different measuring cups for Germans and Russians as both people had become prisoners in their own country after welcoming their particular brand of murderous leader...?

Is Germany collectively guilty for crimes against humanity by its government as many have repeatedly and falsely stated in this blog? Not according to international law and not according to the findings of the victors at the Nuremberg Trials. Those who persist in this wrong assumption are guilty of an unlawful opinion and historic revisionism.

It is truly sad that this opinion is used to justify horrible crimes against humanity by the Soviet Union but you have to live with your own guilt in this matter - not I. The Almighty will not ask you if you were part of the victors or of the vanquished when it comes to killing the defenseless and innocent. His justice is the only correct and final one for both.

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

Helian:

In accordance with your request, I am forwarding you herewith an unbiased copy of Prussian history.

It explains that East Prussia became legally part of the Holy Roman Empire for all time with the agreement of its neighboring Poland and the blessings of the Holy Roman Emperor and the Pope. Those were all the available internationally recognized authorities in the matter:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prussiahttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prussia

Peter P. Haase
Boca Raton, Florida
USA

@Peter

"It explains that East Prussia became legally part of the Holy Roman Empire for all time with the agreement of its neighboring Poland and the blessings of the Holy Roman Emperor and the Pope. Those were all the available internationally recognized authorities in the matter:"

Right, all nice and legal, and the original East Prussians didn't object, since they had all been exterminated by that time. Well, who am I to complain. We took over the land I was born in without so much as consulting the Pope or the Holy Roman Emperor. It's possible some Polish land speculators were involved, but history is silent on that point.

Peter,

At this point, no one with any real historical knowledge questions the fact that Stalin was as bad as Hitler. But the fact is that we needed to ally with him to defeat Germany, after the war there was nothing that could realistically be done about the situation, without going into nuclear war, and, like it or not, at this point it is too late. And whoever wrote that East Prussia was not always part of Germany was 100% correct; if you want to allow the Germans from 1945 to return, you need to go further back and give the right of return to anyone who was ever pushed out of any part of Europe.

How can you say that, when Hitler very clearly, from the beginning, both in his writings and in his speeches, spoke of his intense hatred of the Jews, how Germany woudl be better off without them, etc.? Those were not feelings that were hidden behind closed doors until 1945. He made it common knowledge.

Peter,
That would be the same Holy Roman Empire that included Italy and part of Spain. SO are you suggesting that that entity should be reformed? SO much for the EU!!

Peter wrote: "What I have done is put my finger on a subject that has been swept under the rug in the world and needs to be aired from time to time. This subject is the Soviet expulsion and genocide of people of my homeland. The facts are well knon to all NATO allied goverments and guilt has been placed firmly by history at Stalin's door."

So why all the excitement and repeated attempts to widen the discussion by defending Allied bombing strategies which are of nobody's main concern at Germany or America anymore (except by German leftists.)"

What does WWII bombing have to do with the expulsion of Germans by the Soviets, Poles, Czechs and others?

Peter wrote: "It is this double standard of justice which infuriates the young people in Germany and it is justified."

Medienkritik documents on almost a daily basis, the double standard of Germans, young and old, against America. Please document a double standard held and promoted by Americans against Germany.

Peter wrote: "That is why they protested our preemptive strike in Iraq while the peremptive strikes by the German Kaiser and by Hitler against Russia were totally condemned by us."

The US and Coalition attack on Iraq was NOT a preemptive attack, unmentioned 'of aggression' against Iraq.
1. Iraq invaded Kuwait.
2. UN authorized member States to expel Iraq from Kuwait.
3. US led coalition expelled Iraq from Kuwait in Gulf War.
4. Iraq signed ceasefire agreement and promised to undertake various actions.
5. UN passes 17 resolutions calling on Iraq to fulfill promises.
6. UN gives Iraq one last chance or ceasefire will be lifted.
7. US led coalition invades and overthrows Saddam regime under authority
of UN resolutions. This is not preemptive, it was the continuation of the first Gulf War.

Peter, do you understand? This has been explained 14,000 times. Do you understand the difference between this and a suprise attack to invade, conquer, exploit and murder the people of another country? Or are you so morally blind, you can't tell the difference?

So, how can this be used as justification of Amihass and finger-pointing and calls of 'double standard'? It's uninformed, hate-filled people, convinced of their own superiority, ie German young people who feel (not think, feel) this way.

(just closing the italics)

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