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The Escapist

The Escapist Forums : Threads
  • Trump recognises Jerusalem as the capital of Israel

    Actually, one of the main things that came out of Nuremberg was that "only following orders" is not an acceptable excuse. Therefore the ones which weren't prosecuted clearly hadn't been demonstrably involved in war crimes.

    Sure, but this doesn't mean they were good people, or had committed no crimes.

    Firstly, it's worth bearing in mind that the Nuremberg trials were a compromise. The initial plan (proposed by the British government) was just to round up all high ranking Nazis and shoot them. The reason that didn't happen is that was seen as more a effective deterrent to put them on trial, where their crimes would become a matter of public record. It's questionable whether this actually worked, and to be honest it probably would have been better to just shoot them. They were all guilty, and they all went to prison or were otherwise punished. Some were just more guilty than others.

    After the war, the allies came up with a program called "denazification". It was designed to destroy any trace of Nazi ideology across the whole population of Germany and Austria. The initial plan was to simply remove everyone who had been a member of the Nazi party or involved with any of its subsidiary organisations from any positions of influence or power. Those whose involvement was deemed to be too close would also be punished further. The problem is, this would have meant investigating and punishing 10% of the population of Germany at the time, including the vast majority of members of certain key professions. It would have meant that Germany as a state could no longer function, thus, the plan had to be compromised.

    So denazification shifted towards a broader policy of softer, collective punishment. German civilians were forced to tour concentration camps, or even dig up mass graves. They were made to watch films of concentration camp victims. Allied propaganda efforts focused on "humiliating" the German population as a whole, by emphasising their shared complicity. The message was clear, even passive support for the Nazis was guilt. This was seen as a just attitude, in fact, it was seen as the only appropriate attitude given how deeply complicit ordinary Germans had been found to have been, so complicit that punishing them as individuals was impossible.

    It's debatable wether this actually worked, however, because people still come out with nonsense like this..

    The vast majority of Germans, and large numbers of the actual Nazi party, knew nothing about the Holocaust until well into the war at the very least, and even then it was mainly limited to rumours due to state sanctioned misinformation. Holding them responsible is an unjust attitude.

    Which is a lie. They knew. They claimed they didn't know, but they all knew. The ghettos were not hidden, they were not a secret places. The disappearance of the entire Jewish population of Germany was not hidden from them. The vast majority of Germans were perfectly happy with all the Jews disappearing. They thought it was a good thing. They could not visualize what was happening to those people, they could not perhaps imagine the piles of corpses or the rooms full of children's shoes, but in a sanitized sense they knew what was happening and they supported it. They continued to support it pretty much until Hitler's death, when it became apparent that they were going to lose the war. Even after the war ended, something like a third of Germans surveyed believed that Germany was better with the Jews gone.

    Ridding Germany of Nazism required cultural engineering on a scale unlike anything the world has seen before or since. In a way, it's still going on in the battle with neo-Nazism today. There is no such thing as benevolent or innocent Nazism, there never was.

  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2 - Impressions

    Dunkey pretty much nailed everything I thought the game would be from a 15-minute Nintendo Direct video. The game is just like Pokemon but you collect girls.

  • Republicans in Congress are refusing to continue Trump-Russia investigation, won't name new witnesse

    Waiting for the shoe to be on the other foot as Republican after Republican is thrown into a room and asked certain questions like "Are you now, or have you ever been, a party to Communism or a Communist plot?". That would probably make my day, at this point. Way to admit your guilt, guys! You're so obvious that you might as well step down now!

    Because two wrongs make a right and all that? Because petty vengeance is the way to a happy society?