Friday, July 2, 2010

Hitler's Emprie

Late in 2009 I reviewed Mark Mazower's Hitler's Empire: How the Nazis Ruled Europe, for Azure. Azure being a serious journal, not a blog, had reasonable editorial comments, which I took upon myself to address. Then we were at war in Gaza, my son was sent in with his unit, and I didn't have the state of mind for fixing the review, which was set aside and forgotten.

So now, with the permission of Azure, I'm posting the review in its original form, here.


NormanF said...

I think an argument can be made Nazi policy was anti-colonial. It ran in the opposite direction of colonial policy. It never created a status quo. Every where it sought to overturn the status quo and replace it not with order and good administration but with terror and imposed anarchy. The Nazis were not seeking to create a new empire inasmuch as they sought to replace it with something new in the history of mankind. All of us alive today owe our existence to the fact that was never realized.

Anonymous said...

OT but too beautiful (and too poignant and too well done) to miss

hold Kleenex ready - no it is not soppy it is for real

whoever that Yedida Freilich is, I think she's great


Anonymous said...

As an African colonial power before World War I Germany was ruthless in putting down rebellions in both German East and German West Africa. 100,000+ dead to put down a rebellion in East Africa around 1904. I know of no wealth they extracted from those colonies. That is one string of continuity in the history of German occupation policy during World War II.

While exaggerated, the German "rape" of Belgium during World War I was very harsh. (Shooting civilians in reprisal, etc.) That's a second string of continuity leading to World War II occupation policy.

The "late comers" among the European colonial nations in Africa include Belgium, Spain and Italy. Belgium's nasty record in the Congo is well known. That the Spanish used poison gas in putting down rebellion in Spanish Morocco after World War I is less well known. The Italians had the reputation of throwing leaders of native rebellions in Libya out of airplanes. Alive. I do not know whether the author of the book in question differentiates between the "mature" colonizing countries like Britain, France, and Holland, and the new comers. But it might form a third string of continuity.

Not defending Nazis. And not seeing any link between Nazi policy in Europe and anything Israel does or did. Just recording where my mind went after reading your book review.

Anonymous said...


in your impressive demonstration of how your mind wanders you forgot to mention that the Italians invented aerial bombing in Libya or wasn't it called Cyrenaika back then? and that the Brits to the best of my knowledge invented the precursor of the concentration camp.

And what is all that to signify?
- for people with a certain kind of one-track-mind a straight line into Israel
- after all why are you so timid on drawing the line only from Germany, the Byzantines were pretty evil and creative as were the Mongols and the Romans or how about the Vikings, great sackers of cities it is said, good on raping, pillaging and murdering just like the Franks.

none of them ever made even the slightest attempt of protecting civilians via risking their own lives, but that's a "minor" difference and we can't be bothered to keep those in mind, after all our mind is way too small for keeping more than one thought at a time,

btw are you maybe "Ibrahim" looking for some relief from the tension building up currently? If you are not, my apologies, but you sound eerily similar to him and he likes to try on all kinds of disguises, badly constructed usually but still he keeps trying, that's one thing to be said in favour of one-track-minds they keep trying


Anonymous said...

while we bicker about the past it seems General Petraeus underlings are planning the future and send more barbed stuff at Obama.
I have no idea if it is normal that thought experiments of either Red or Blue Team get leaked but I think their assumptions are quite delusional.
And that applies to the best of my knowledge to the Lebanese view point also.
One thing seems sure to me though from his choice of words: the author Mark Perry doesn't like Israel.

Also peculiar is that the "Red Team" is said to have worked on a book by Aaron David Miller who to the best of my memory was read by all as having made a U-turn and become Israel-friendly. The quotes in the new FP piece suggest however that the "Red Team" regards Israel at best as a nuisance.
CENTCOM thinks outside the box on Hamas and Hezbollah.


Sylvia said...


Gaza aid in return for Gilad Shalit -

Stephen said...

Azure being a serious journal, not a blog, had reasonable editorial comments...

That sentence would read much more smoothly if edited as follows:

"Being a serious journal, not a blog, Azure had reasonable editorial comments..."

AKUS said...

There's an interesting excerpt at the end:

" even Israelis — though the emigration statistics remain a closely guarded official secret — are voting with their feet. "

Actually, just for example, the same could be said of emigration from NZ to Australia, or Mexico to the USA, and no-one attaches great moral weight to this economic issue, or predicts the imminent demise of either of those countries.

But leaving that aside, it I have also come across reports of Jews in Europe being told to "go back to where you came from" - i.e., Israel - by those who at the same time are condemning Israel for every sin in the book and hoping for its destruction.

There is no sense to be had in these Israel bashers.

Anonymous said...

if you like them absurd here is a review of Paul Berman's book making all kinds of distinctions between Islamists and Islamists. (recommended for Four also;)

That this Marc Lynch is deeply dishonest or at best confused can be guessed at the outset by the remark "read in translation" - I remember distinctly another review that mentioned that Berman went back to early as yet untranslated writings by Ramadan (I assume he reads French)
There is also the bizarre defense for Qaradawi who kept Bassam Tibi when he was still in Germany worrying without end (Bassam Tibi was the tireless advocate for Euro-Islam - he needs protection now says Berman)

If you are interested in another example of how appeasers' minds worked it is recommended reading
(one snarky remark from me as a woman: Lynch seems to have quite a bias for veiled women)
oh and he even has a blog at FP where you'll find all the links and a nice photo of Ramadan - I keep wondering whether it is coincidence that they chose these fotos who make the guy look so Jesus-like.