Friday, May 22, 2009

Nazism Was a Leftist Ideology

Due to the increasing popularity in Europe of national movements such as Vlaams Belang and Pro-Köln, the “N” word is being flung around with wild abandon these days.

The word “Nazi”, that is.

Any organized group that asserts the right of indigenous Europeans to protect and maintain their traditional cultures is automatically labeled “neo-Nazi”, especially by ill-informed people on this side of the Atlantic.

Henrik Ræder Clausen of Europe News sets the record straight about the Nazis in the following guest-essay (originally posted here).


Nazism was a leftist ideology
by Henrik Ræder Clausen


With some annoyance, I recently noticed my local newspaper, Aarhus Stiftstidende, full of articles about Nazism, an ideology I thought we had seen the last of on the 5th of May 1945, when Denmark was liberated after 5 years of German occupation. But it seems we’re not that lucky.

A Nazi group exists in Denmark again, and leftwing extremists like Antifa contribute by putting up swastikas in the streets of Aarhus. While the craft was nicely done, it was swastikas nonetheless, a symbol I do not want in my city under any circumstances.

Then, there seems to be some confusion as to where Nazism belongs in the political spectrum. That is understandable, for probably no political group in Denmark (save the youth branch of Venstre, who recently held a meeting with them) would tolerate their company.

For this reason, it’s important to make clear that Nazism (the full name of the political party was “Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei”, which translates to “National Socialist German Workers Party”), also according to their own understanding, is an extreme leftist ideology. They consider themselves to belong to the tradition of the Jacobins in France, and taking into account the Reign of Terror instigated by them, this is not an unreasonable characterization.
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If one looks at the Nazi political program, and it’s implementation during the 1930’s (before the war), it was distinctly leftist, and radically so. Quoting Bruce Walker in American Thinker:

Vera Micheles Dean in her 1939 book, Europe in Retreat, written before the Second World War began, said that the Nazis had introduced into Germany a form of graduated Bolshevism, focusing first upon Jewish bankers, industrialists and businessmen, but then upon other businesses, noting that the Nazi goal, from which it had not deviated, was to establish an egalitarian society in which everyone is equal and subordinate to the state.

The main Nazi propagandist, Joseph Goebbels, made it clear from the outset that nothing was more despicable to the Nazis than the Bourgeoisie, the Capitalists and Christianity. Any confusion to the contrary may be due to the fact that the German Conservatives, in a vain attempt to ‘influence’ Hitler, decided to eventually work with him once he rose to power. This granted him the legitimacy he so desperately wanted, the power he needed to fulfill his plans, while the utterly frustrated Germans lived to see him wreck total havoc in Germany and Europe at large.

For obvious propagandistic reasons, Stalin and his allies fiercely insisted on using the ‘right-wing’ label on the Nazis. It would certainly not look good to expose the fact that Communism of the Soviet Union seen from an economic point of view (anti-Semitism is a different matter), was merely a more radical variant of the system implemented by Nazi Germany.

After the fall of the Soviet Union, an exhibition in Moscow compared Hitler and Stalin to great effect demonstrated just how similar Communism and Nazism are in their totalitarian insanity. Many an old Russian, who through decades persistently had admired Stalin, left the exhibition in tears, after it had become clear just how similar Communism was to the Nazism it had defeated.

As for Nazism as such, it is a confused and foolish ideology that doesn’t deserve life on earth. It is better to discuss issues of actual relevance.

15 comments:

Cas said...

Isn't this the premise that Jonah Goldberg described in detail in his book, "Liberal Fascism" ?

Henrik R Clausen said...

Cas, it is. I read it when it was published and wrote about it here. The article in American Thinker addresses the problem in more concrete detail than in Liberal Fascism, which is more ideology-orientated than the AT article.

Liberal Fascism recently had a very favorable review in the Danish weekly Weekendavisen. The information is making its way.

Understanding the details of what made Nazism evil will help us avoid similar mistakes today.

Natalie said...

Thank you so much for this, Henrik. I am so tired of seeing right-wingers being called Nazis. It's time that we set the record straight.

Spinoneone said...

Indeed, the Nazi's were leftist extremists. Look at this piece from Dean's book: "...the Nazi goal, from which it had not deviated, was to establish an egalitarian society in which everyone is equal and subordinate to the state." Think about that for a minute. It sounds a lot like where Obama wants to take us.

Homophobic Horse said...

Eric Voegelin identified a trend in the Western intellectual life he called gnosticism. He hold that Joachim of Fiore interpreted history into three realms, the age of the father, the age of the son, and the age of the holy spirit. The third realm of the holy spirit was supposed to be a place where there would be no authority whatsoever, be it spiritual or secular, and the all the worlds religions would coalesce into one religion of the spirit, available to all for nothing. This aggregate of symbols, Voegelin believed, has dominated Western utopian movements. The desire to create a third realm that would be perfectly self organising and would require no authority or coercion has been the goal all the Western utopian movements. For instance there is Karl Marx's classless society in an economy of super abundance. There is Nazi Third Reich peopled with the Aryan master rate that has been perfected through war and eugenic purification to remove elements such as schizophrenia, alcoholism, criminality etc. Then there is the Liberal Democratic "End of History" pronounced after the fall of the Berlin Wall. This is the one we are currently struggling with. The Liberal Democratic "end of history" is unlike Nazism or Stalinism in that it is neither Apocalyptic nor Revolutionary. It's global arbiter is chiefly America, NGO's, and the United Nations. The prerogative of universal equality is enforced with Faustian intrigue (George Soros), legal management (UN), and Global Policeman (America).

flippinheck said...

1) Marxist-Leninists and Stalinists are International-Socialists
2) Nazis are literally National-Socialists
3) Fascists are also National-Socialists: (a little-known fact)

Benito Mussolini was born into a working class background, his father Alessandro Mussolini was an Anarchist activist. Owing to his father's political leanings, Mussolini was named Benito after Mexican reformist President Benito Juárez, while his middle names Andrea and Amilcare were from Italian socialists Andrea Costa and Amilcare Cipriani. Alessandro was a socialist and a republican, but also held some nationalistic views, especially in regards to some of the Italians who were living under the rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which were not consistent with the internationalist socialism of the time. (so, similar to Hitler, his father was a National-Socialist in the making) Benito Mussolini soon followed suit and joined the Marxian Socialist movement in the city of Trento as secretary of the local chamber of labor. He did office work for the local socialist party and edited its newspaper L'Avvenire del Lavoratore ("The Future of the Worker").

By 1910 Mussolini edited the weekly Lotta di classe.(the Class Struggle) He was now one of Italy's most prominent Socialists. In 1911, there was a riot by Socialists, and Mussolini with them, against the Italian war in Lybia. He bitterly denounced the "imperialist war" to gain Tripoli (spoken like a true socialist), an action which earned him a five month jail term.After his release he helped expel from the ranks of the Socialist party two 'revisionists' who had supported the war, Ivanhoe Bonimi, and leonida Bissolati. For that he was rewarded with the editorship of the Socialist party newspaper Avanti! (Forward!) Its circulation soon rose from 20,000 to 100,000.

After having served 9 months at the front he had decided that socialism as a doctrine had largely been a failure. In early 1918, Mussolini called for the emergence of a man "ruthless and energetic enough to make a clean sweep" to revive the Italian nation. An important factor in fascism gaining support in its earliest stages was the fact that it opposed discrimination based on social class and was strongly opposed to all forms of class war. Fascism instead supported nationalist sentiments such as a strong unity, regardless of class, in the hopes of raising Italy up to the levels of its great Roman past.

In essence, Benito Mussolini reformed mainstream Socialist groups into Fascists. By doing so, he was harking back to the teachings of his own father.

Both Nazism and Fascism stem from the same root: Socialism / Communism / Bolshevism / Marxism-Leninism or whatever one likes to call it. PC/MC today is the "legitimate façade of totalitarianism", under the guise of Social-Democracy.

They are exactly the same, but this is not commonly known and widely understood.

Czechmade said...

This topic is so important - it could become a clue to real change in our attitudes and solutions finding.

I think we should create a group to start studying the subject in detail.

It would be perfect to collect and copy for all the works of nazis and newspapers from those times. To see the gradation. To feel all the events coming from that times´ perspective.

I enjoyed greatly reading books about Franco. So many things reminded me of the communists. It is really a small pool. And I could feel at the same time for all the people disowned - not once - up to three times - by fierce leftists in Chile or Spain.

I read in German (as many Scandinavians do), in Italian, Norwegian/Danish, Russian and partly in Spanish. We might be in position to collect wonderful quotes to show how shallow our post-war concepts are about what really happened.

Last week-end I had a big film-party in my big country house. I was amazed speaking to one Czech intellectual how much the term "nation" can be nowadays associated with "nazis". In fact our emancipation efforts of national renaissance, revival of our language in 18-19 cc. might be easily termed as "nazi" under current PC views. So a linguist or a folklorist in those days was almost a "crypto-nazi" in our new EU parlance.

Another guy - a sound-engineer - knew exactly (without being asked) that "nazis" were leftists.

So there is some knowledge and hesitations to call the things as they are. We need more - real work investition in this topic.

I propose we get more materials.
We can do a wonderful job.

The commonplace concept is to behave, think and speak in a certain way not to be "nazi". This stipulates total dependance on nazis in fact, since those guys are suddenly central to our pondering, a sort of measurement like metre, joul or kilograms. We are made dependent of some weird people - those from the past and those acting now.

For me it is utterly ridiculous to be associated with anything nazi. But I know there is a possibility to silence me in my free good-hearted thought, to freeze me that way.

And there was a wonderful old movie last Sunday in my house about Jews in Slovakia under their specific nazi regime - about their deportation.

A little Slovak guy "in charge" of a little Jewish shop with an old Jewish lady hardly able to comprehend what is going on in her street. He threw her in the basement trying to save her - and killed her that way - scared himself to death of the local nazis
(saying Jew-lovers are worse than Jews) and comitted suicide - unable to solve anything.

I think only checking such various details might give us a strong picture to define anew our position.

P.S. Good news from Germany - the leftist frenzy launched in Germany in late sixties after shooting Ohnesorg by an "evil" West German police officer is going to be proved to be an deliberate action of a Stasi-officer working within West-Berlin police. How similar to palestinian second intifada!

It is a serious blow to the German leftists plus the accusations how much money they have received from East Germany. The Greens as well. It is great!

Czechmade said...

Flippinheck,

there is a little quote from Hitler saying that the communists make the best converts to the nazis (laughing about his observation).

Darrin Hodges said...

There is also another excellent essay on this topic - http://jonjayray.tripod.com/hitler.html

KGS said...

There is also an excellent case to be made that early Marxist-socialist thought was ripe with anti-semitism and approval for the genocide of certain unwanted masses.

Hitler had embarked on his destructive policies in the 30's and 40's with the full knowledge that his actions were in strict accordance with traditional Marxist thinking.

The reasons why many a Marxist and/or Socialist are surprised by such a claim, is that much of Marx's original work and correspondances with other socialist thinkers of his day....is left unread.

Czechmade said...

KGS, that is why I suggest to go through various sources. We might get surprized how easy it might be to hit the fan.

Marx described Czechs as "ethic rubble", his panGermania included also Holland. Marx hated Russia, it is like Mohammad disdaining the Turks who became later guardians of his very ideology.

Recent discoveries on this field should not be underestimated. Historians do have access to more material (archives partly unsealed) - contact them, ask for more sources, tips.

Stalin banned any opposition of his communists to nazis taking over the streets in the key period in Germany. He banned any opposition of CZ communists when nazis invaded whole CZ. More parallels somewhere else?

He attacked Poland at the same time - strenghtening thus nazis invading Poland. Instead of supporting Polish army.

That is officially when the WWII started. No Russia or Stalin mentioned...German-Soviet border was fine, Stalin handed over even some German communists to their rightful owners - the nazis.

Henrik R Clausen said...

Somewhat related, it just turned out that the killing of a student in Germany on June 2nd 1967, which gave rise to the extreme left movement and Rote Armee Fraktion, was done by an agent of the DDR, not by a regular German police officer.

Talk about disproportionate damage done...

Henrik R Clausen said...

For anyone interested in the economical aspects of this, Mises.org has a long article Why Nazism Was Socialism, which goes more into detail of what exactly made it a socialist regime.

Key to this was the fact that effective ownership of the industries had been transferred to the State, with the original holders only nominally in control of their property.

Czechmade said...

Let us design a "right wing" nazi party:

Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei”, which translates to “National Socialist German Workers Party".

"National Capitalist German Exploiters No-taxes Party"

Arius said...

This is a very important post of a little known fact. National Socialism is of the Left, and that is why Fascism is now emerging in the US from the Left (Bush jump started it in 2008, but the Democrats are putting it on steroids).