Monday, 12 September 2011

"basically National Socialism and Marxism are NOT the same." (draft)

Those that have been actively following my youtube channel as of late know that i've made a good use of an excellent article from the peer reviewed literature titled "Red Fascism: The merger of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia in the american image of totalitarianism". It's from The American Historical review, vol 75, no4 (apr., 1970) and is written by les K. Adler and Thomas G. Paterson. It makes the point that, much like today with Beck and friends, a number of comparisons between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union were attempted, often by propagandists before, during and even well into the Cold war. These comparsions were very silly and very superficial and deliberately so. Marshall D. Shulman is quoted in the aforementioned article for admitting the comparisons made were "often misleading ....".
This is one quote from the article that i have used in two of my videos now:
"Americans both before and after the second world war casualy and deliberately articulated distorted similarities between nazi and communist ideologies, german and soviet foreign policies, authoritarian controls and trade practices, and Hitler and Stalin. This popular analogy was a potent and pervasive notion that significantly shaped American of world events in the cold war. Once russia was designated the "enemy" by american leaders, americans transferred their hatred of Hitler's germany to Stalin's russia with considerable ease and persuasion."

But to give you a better feel of the article in case you cannot acsess it yourself, i shall present two more quotations, The first is quite poignant with Glenn Beck in mind, the latter effectively describing what American propaganda was doing during the war itself.
"Yet it is nevertheless true that, because the outward appearances of the two systems seemed to be more similar to each other than either seemed to be to any previous political system in the world, the real differences between fascist and Communist systems have been obscured. It was, in essence, easier for Americans to recognize their similarities than their differences, and though the intensity and scope of the analogy have varied greatly since the 1930's, the characteristic of similarity has remained constant in the American perception of totalitarian systems. Ignoring the widely diverse origins, ideologies, goals, and practices of totalitarian regimes, Americans have tended to focus only on the seemingly similar methods employed by such regimes and to assume that these methods are the basic immutable characteristics of totalitarianism anywhere."

"Russia's unprovoked attack on Finland in 1939 aroused American indignation; it was, in fact, clear that both Germany and Russia were aggressors in Europe. War relief crusades for the Finns gained an ecstatic national response. Robert Sherwood responded with his well-received drama, There Shall Be No Night, condemning the German and Soviet aggressive conspiracy against world democracy. Frederick Hazlitt Brennan invented the phrase "Commu-Nazi" in a five-part story in early 1940 called "Let Me Call You Comrade." Thus, on the eve of World War II, many Americans linked fascist and Communist ideologies as denials of human freedom and tolerance, saw Germany and Russia as international aggressors, and pictured Hitler and Stalin as evil comrades. Shortly after the sudden German invasion of Russia in June 1941, the Wall Street Journal indicated its ambivalent position on the outcome of the new war: "The American people know that the principal difference between Mr. Hitler and Mr. Stalin is the size of their respective mustaches."Former Ambassador to Russia William C. Bullitt saw the contest as one between "Satan and Lucifer." Some American isolationists denounced the power politics of both Germany and Russia and adopted a plague-on-both-your-houses attitude. Yet after the invasion President Roosevelt, against ardent opposition, promised and extended to Russia lend-lease aid. The opinion of most interventionists was that, though Russia was evil, it at least was not an immediate threat to the United States; Germany, on the other hand, was both evil and threatening. After the entry of the United States into World War II Americans focused on the differences between Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia in order to help cement the wartime alliance among Russia, the United States, and Great Britain. It was popular to stress that indeed Russia and the United States were similar; both were anti-imperialist, and both had a revolutionary past. Collier's in 1943 could conclude that Russia was "evolving from a sort of Fascism ... toward something resembling our own and Great Britain's democracy." But the stress on differences was a temporary facade a reaction to Soviet war efforts rather than a reappraisal, and the Nazi-Communist analogy appeared publicly again as Soviet-American tensions increased near the close of the war."
Here's one example of an American outlet conjuring up "distorted similarities". Hitler was named "Man of the Year" in 1938 by Time Magazine. Within the article they wrote of him, they had this to say....
"The Nazi credo that the individual belongs to the state also applies to business. Some have been confiscated outright, on others what amounts to a capital tax has been levied. Profits have been strictly controlled. Increasing Governmental control and interference in business is deduced from the fact that 80% of all building and 50% of all industrial orders in Germany originated last year with the Government. Hard-pressed for food- stuffs as well as funds, the Nazi regime has taken over large estates and in many instances collectivized agriculture, a procedure fundamentally similar to Russian Communism."
 The trouble with this quote? While Certainly Gov't spending was major factor during re-armament, something conservatives then and now love, but the Nazis did NOT collectivize agriculture. The Nazis actually passed laws that ensured that farms would remain in private hands and not be broken up into too many untenable pieces that were unviable, upon inheritance. That does not constitute collectivization of the land in Nazi Germany. The large estates and small farms were protected, the Nazi party and Hitler opposed the exportation referendum of 25/26. So when they had a chance to act in a real socialist manner they consistently failed to do so.

"The Nazis lowered the taxes imposed on most business: "The government...eased the capital position of private business. Agriculture [and particularly the large land holders, the 'agrobusiness'] was given a tax relief and a reduction of the burden of debt, while industry gained subsidies and tax relief for new investment and employment." - RJ Overy "War and Economy in the Third Reich", p55.

"The combination of domestic demand, an end to foreign competition, rising prices and relatively static wages created a context in which it was not hard to make healthy profits. Indeed, be 1934 the bonuses being paid to the boards of some firms were so spectacular that they were causing acute embarrassment to Hitler's government." - Adam Tooze, "The Wages of Destruction", p108.

"Though it is important to justice to the shift in power relations between the state and business that undoubtedly occurred in the early 1930s, we must be careful to avoid falling into the trap of viewing German business as a passive object in the regimes new system of regulation. [...] profits were rising rapidly after 1933 and this opened attractive future prospects for German corporate management." - Tooze, "Ibid", p114.

The other thing to note about Time was it's editor-in-chief of Time after 1929, Henry Luce, who was also one of the magazine's founders maintained a position as an member of the Republican Party and held anti-communist sentiments which ended up being permeated through his publications. As we can see that paticular piece of propaganda falls flat on its face.
But i want to suggest an idea of my own. The British too were indulging in such activities as "casualy and deliberately articulated distorted similarities between nazi and communist ideologies, german and soviet foreign policies, authoritarian controls and trade practices, and Hitler and Stalin". I certainly think i have at least one piece of evidence for this courtesy of a piece titled "Herr Hitler’s Speech of February 24," from the "Bulletin of International News (published by the Royal Institute of International Affairs), vol. 18, March 8, 1941, p. 269". It has Hitler quoted simply as saying "basically National Socialism and Marxism are the same."
But lo and behold, we have that speech of Hitler right in front of us.

It was a customary speech on the foundation of the party in the festival hall of the Munich HofbrÀuhaus. And surprise surprise there is nothing even remotely resembeling the phrase given by the Bulletin of International News. The common revolution he is speaking of is Italy's not Russia's. Furthermore even when he states that "It is today no longer possible to build up a state on a capitalistic basis." he makes it clear that he is only referring to international capital, his policy really only differs because it is a nationalist capitalist one "Therefore we will not establish our economic policy to suit the conceptions or desires of bankers in New York or London". If you want a more detailed analysis of the speech, see Max Domarus' four volume work "Hitler: Speeches and Proclamations (p2372 - 2376)".

Now why was that quote in the bulletin? Well there was this little thing we British like to call the "Blitz" which was still ongoing, and there was alot of Anti-german propaganda being circulated at the time for the obvious reason that they were the ones bombing our cities. The "quote" the bulletin gave is just a piece of wartime propaganda and nothing more. I cannot see at present another source that would verify that Hitler really did say it. so im tempted to say the bulletin fabricated the quote in order to make the Germans even more "scary" and adding it to the images of "Scary Communism"

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