Friday, October 16, 2009
Is fairly straightforward, in that Mao and company professed to be following the same sorts of principles, with the same goals, that had been percolating both in Europe and in the United States since the American Revolution, while Hitler flatly and very publicly renounced and attacked those same principles. Notice the word I used in relation to Mao was 'professed'. There was no possible justification for the Holocaust, not even the often given Stalinist and then Maoist justification of development and industrialization. It was purely murder to end the existence of a hated minority. While Mao and company committed outrages, their actions do have more ambiguity to them than those of the Nazis do. Notice, before you start salivating, that some ambiguity doesn't mean absolution, just another layer of complexity. Stalin never set up death camps, neither did Mao. The Khmer Rouge basically did, but the White House spokesman wasn't quoting Pol Pot. With both Stalin and Mao the end result was not something that was clearly ordained from the start. In fact, both Bolshevik Russia and Communist China went through considerable struggle before Stalinism and Maoism became ascendent, struggle that involved folks who didn't want it to happen trying to prevent it from coming to pass. There doesn't seem to be any sort of similar ambiguity with the Nazis.
Posted by John Madziarczyk at 7:30 PM