Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Nazi Germany Without Hindsight

Barry Rubin has a new blog, The Rubin Report. May he be as popular as Juan Cole, without being as silly. At the moment, his top post contains four interesting letters written in the mid-1930s by a young German woman to a pen-pal in New Zealand (pen pals were a stone-age precursor to Facebook friends, for those who don't recognize the term). The letters have the advantage of lacking any hindsight, and of telling a story of how a young German woman saw the Hitler regime from the inside without realizing where they were going with it. This is the way 100% of human experience actually works. We never know with certainty what the results of our actions will be; then again, we bear full responsibility for them. Complicated.

1 comment:

4infidels said...

Thanks for the link to Barry Rubin's blog. It looks like an excellent read from one of the sharper analysts on Middle Eastern affairs.

The major disagreement I have had with Rubin over the years--that I also have with Ami Isseroff and Jeffrey Goldberg, both of whom I also enjoy reading--is that he seems to believe that Fatah are moderates and preferable to Hamas. Well, almost anyone if preferable to Hamas, but at the end of the day, Fatah's plans for the Jews of Israel are no different than those of Hamas. As Khaled Abu Toameh has pointed out, there is almost no difference in Arabic between what Hamas and Fatah broadcasts and prints in their official media.