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Another Crazy Bush-Hitler Comparison

I always found the conservative Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung's feuilleton to be weird compared to the rest of the paper, but this book review (in German) by Edo Reents is beyond weird, i.e. it is outrageous. The book tries to explain why the Dreyfus Affair matters today and is written by the US novelist Louis Begley. The reviewer claims: ". the Bush government, which, inasmuch as it illegally imprisoned and tortured people, essentially behaved no differently than the National Socialists."

So, now John Rosenthal was able to state in Pajama's Media: "German Daily: Bush Was Hitler" And it is this sort of blog posts and headlines that seems to give quite a few Americans the impression that Bush-Hitler comparisons are a common feature in the German media. I find that quite unfortunate, but I admit that these crazy comparisons (or even equations) do happen and are worse than their exaggerations on some US blogs, like on the American Thinker.

Related posts on Atlantic Review: Two More Americans Accuse Germany of Historical Revisionism and Top Democrat on Auschwitz, Guantanamo and Europe


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Don S on :

". the Bush government, which, inasmuch as it illegally imprisoned and tortured people, essentially behaved no differently than the National Socialists." The writer is of course completely correct. The Bush administration waterboarded three men while the Third Reich killed, murdered, and tortured to death - a number of people. The similarities simply leap out at one. Note that after many years of resistance to the thought I have finally decided to face my inner national socialist..... ;)

John in Michigan, US on :

"and are worse than their exaggerations" What a great turn of phrase, well done. I'll grant you, explicit Bush-Hitler comparisons are rarer in Germany than elsewhere in Europe, and are also rarer in Europe than some on the American right like to make out. But to read that as a 100% vindication of Europe is a mistake; the objection only partly concerns the frequency of these comparisons. It also concerns the casual non-reaction they arouse, in contrast with the more swift and serious reaction to any comparisons between (for example) the EU and Communism. To put it another way: in Europe, anti-fascist statements that go too far, are easily forgiven, but anti-communist statements that go too far, are not so easily forgiven. Given all that we've learned since the opening of the Iron Curtain, why should this be true? Furthermore: Perhaps the rarity of explicit Bush-Hitler comparisons is simply because, the explicit comparison has become cliché. From what I can see, the underlying feeling or sentiment remains very much alive and has become part of the standard mythology in Europe (and in the US) regarding the Bush years. To me, the reason why certain parts of the American political world point with so much relish to these unfortunate incidents in Germany is resentment over this assymetry of condemnation. A few on the extreme American right want Nazism to be less condemned; but most balanced people on the right simply want Communism to be equally condemned. And yet, [url=]as discussed earlier[/url], Europe (even Germany) is unable to imagine a legal or moral equivalence between the two ideologies or their manifestations (symbols, slogans, logos). Meanwhile, Europe remains quite interested with drawing a moral equivalence between modern American-style free market capitalism and Nazism. Worse, this interest rises to the point of mainstream enthusiasm and even obsession when it comes to making comparisons between Israeli-style social markets, and Nazism.

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