Skip to content

"America Might Slip Closer Toward a Weimar Moment"

Historical analogies are always dangerous. George Will makes one nevertheless in the Washington Post:

After the First World War, politics in Germany's new Weimar Republic were poisoned by the belief that the army had been poised for victory in 1918 and that one more surge could have turned the tide. Many Germans bitterly concluded that the political class, having lost its nerve and will to win, capitulated.

UPDATE: More historical analogies between the United States and Weimar Germany: Andrew Sullivan calls President Bush "The Weimar President" after his speech at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention earlier this week. And Kevin Baker wrote already in June 2006 in Harper's Magazine about "Stabbed in the back! The past and future of a right-wing myth." The articles were recommended by David and Axel in the comments section. Thank you!
Our regular commentators post very often interesting links in the comments section, which is one more big reason to read the comments section, whenever you got a bit of time to spare.

Trackbacks

No Trackbacks

Comments

Display comments as Linear | Threaded

Pat Patterson on :

Well, shouldn't the US have had it's "Weimar Moment" in 1976? I must have missed all the rioting Communists and returning soldiers as well as American versions of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill but I do remember the inflation. Will at least had one out of the three right.

Don S on :

Infaltion, Pat? I remember the 'stagflation of the 70's but to compare inflation which peaked at 13% PA to the hyperinflation of Weimar seems equally over thye top to the other two comparisons. I remember watching an 'American Nazi Party' demonstration in downtown Milwaukee in 1976. Less than 100 took part unless you count the counterdemonstrators - who well outnumbered the Nazis. Same thing.

Axel on :

Kevin Baker already wrote [url=http://www.harpers.org/archive/2006/06/0081080]"Stabbed in the back! The past and future of a right-wing myth"[/url] last year...

David on :

See also Andrew Sullivan on [url=http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2007/08/the-weimar-pres.html]The Weimar President[/url].

Pat Patterson on :

Andrew Sullivan once again proves himself to be on the downslope of fame and acuity by comparing Pres. Bush to any of the Weimar presidents. But it sounds cool and people can nod their heads and bask in the glow of understanding the reference even if it is nonsensical. At least Sullivan might have gone to Wikipedia and garnered an inkling of the actual circumstances and power of the Weimar presidents. Pres. Bush has neither dismissed uncooperative governments, called for new elections, nor was he elected by direct vote or ruled by decree. Besides the only ones stabbed in the back in Vietnam were the Vietnamese themselves when the US Congress cut off air, naval support and the the cash.

Don S on :

Well, yes Pat. But Bush WAS compared with the Great One by none other than a certain former Justice Minister in a country I won't name.... Not to mention millions of less official opinions. If you don't mention it neither will I.... ;)

Add Comment

E-Mail addresses will not be displayed and will only be used for E-Mail notifications.

To prevent automated Bots from commentspamming, please enter the string you see in the image below in the appropriate input box. Your comment will only be submitted if the strings match. Please ensure that your browser supports and accepts cookies, or your comment cannot be verified correctly.
CAPTCHA

Form options