Nazism Quotes

Quotes tagged as "nazism" Showing 1-30 of 174
Christopher Hitchens
“[Said during a debate when his opponent asserted that atheism and belief in evolution lead to Nazism:]

Atheism by itself is, of course, not a moral position or a political one of any kind; it simply is the refusal to believe in a supernatural dimension. For you to say of Nazism that it was the implementation of the work of Charles Darwin is a filthy slander, undeserving of you and an insult to this audience. Darwin’s thought was not taught in Germany; Darwinism was so derided in Germany along with every other form of unbelief that all the great modern atheists, Darwin, Einstein and Freud were alike despised by the National Socialist regime.

Now, just to take the most notorious of the 20th century totalitarianisms – the most finished example, the most perfected one, the most ruthless and refined one: that of National Socialism, the one that fortunately allowed the escape of all these great atheists, thinkers and many others, to the United States, a country of separation of church and state, that gave them welcome – if it’s an atheistic regime, then how come that in the first chapter of Mein Kampf, that Hitler says that he’s doing God’s work and executing God’s will in destroying the Jewish people? How come the fuhrer oath that every officer of the Party and the Army had to take, making Hitler into a minor god, begins, “I swear in the name of almighty God, my loyalty to the Fuhrer?” How come that on the belt buckle of every Nazi soldier it says Gott mit uns, God on our side? How come that the first treaty made by the Nationalist Socialist dictatorship, the very first is with the Vatican? It’s exchanging political control of Germany for Catholic control of German education. How come that the church has celebrated the birthday of the Fuhrer every year, on that day until democracy put an end to this filthy, quasi-religious, superstitious, barbarous, reactionary system?

Again, this is not a difference of emphasis between us. To suggest that there’s something fascistic about me and about my beliefs is something I won't hear said and you shouldn't believe.”
Christopher Hitchens

Philip K. Dick
“They want to be the agents, not the victims, of history. They identify with God's power and believe they are godlike. That is their basic madness. They are overcome by some archtype; their egos have expanded psychotically so that they cannot tell where they begin and the godhead leaves off. It is not hubris, not pride; it is inflation of the ego to its ultimate — confusion between him who worships and that which is worshipped. Man has not eaten God; God has eaten man.”
Philip K. Dick, The Man in the High Castle

Richard Weikart
“Darwinism by itself did not produce the Holocaust, but without Darwinism... neither Hitler nor his Nazi followers would have had the necessary scientific underpinnings to convince themselves and their collaborators that one of the worlds greatest atrocities was really morally praiseworthy.”
Richard Weikart, From Darwin to Hitler: Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics, and Racism in Germany

Milton Sanford Mayer
“But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That’s the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked—if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in ’43 had come immediately after the ‘German Firm’ stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in ’33. But of course this isn’t the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D.

And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in—your nation, your people—is not the world you were born in at all. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves; when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. Now you live in a system which rules without responsibility even to God. The system itself could not have intended this in the beginning, but in order to sustain itself it was compelled to go all the way.”
Milton Sanford Mayer, They Thought They Were Free: The Germans 1933-45

Christopher Hitchens
“Like the Nazis, the cadres of jihad have a death wish that sets the seal on their nihilism. The goal of a world run by an oligarchy in possession of Teutonic genes, who may kill or enslave other 'races' according to need, is not more unrealizable than the idea that a single state, let alone the globe itself, could be governed according to the dictates of an allegedly holy book. This mad scheme begins by denying itself the talents (and the rights) of half the population, views with superstitious horror the charging of interest, and invokes the right of Muslims to subject nonbelievers to special taxes and confiscations. Not even Afghanistan or Somalia, scenes of the furthest advances yet made by pro-caliphate forces, could be governed for long in this way without setting new standards for beggary and decline.”
Christopher Hitchens, The Enemy

Madeleine K. Albright
“Hitler lied shamelessly about himself and about his enemies. He convinced millions of men and women that he cared for them deeply when, in fact, he would have willingly sacrificed them all. His murderous ambition, avowed racism, and utter immorality were given the thinnest mask, and yet millions of Germans were drawn to Hitler precisely because he seemed authentic. They screamed, “Sieg Heil” with happiness in their hearts, because they thought they were creating a better world.”
Madeleine K. Albright, Fascism: A Warning

Christopher Hitchens
“Hitherto, the Palestinians had been relatively immune to this Allahu Akhbar style. I thought this was a hugely retrograde development. I said as much to Edward. To reprint Nazi propaganda and to make a theocratic claim to Spanish soil was to be a protofascist and a supporter of 'Caliphate' imperialism: it had nothing at all to do with the mistreatment of the Palestinians. Once again, he did not exactly disagree. But he was anxious to emphasize that the Israelis had often encouraged Hamas as a foil against Fatah and the PLO. This I had known since seeing the burning out of leftist Palestinians by Muslim mobs in Gaza as early as 1981. Yet once again, it seemed Edward could only condemn Islamism if it could somehow be blamed on either Israel or the United States or the West, and not as a thing in itself. He sometimes employed the same sort of knight's move when discussing other Arabist movements, excoriating Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath Party, for example, mainly because it had once enjoyed the support of the CIA. But when Saddam was really being attacked, as in the case of his use of chemical weapons on noncombatants at Halabja, Edward gave second-hand currency to the falsified story that it had 'really' been the Iranians who had done it. If that didn't work, well, hadn't the United States sold Saddam the weaponry in the first place? Finally, and always—and this question wasn't automatically discredited by being a change of subject—what about Israel's unwanted and ugly rule over more and more millions of non-Jews?

I evolved a test for this mentality, which I applied to more people than Edward. What would, or did, the relevant person say when the United States intervened to stop the massacres and dispossessions in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo? Here were two majority-Muslim territories and populations being vilely mistreated by Orthodox and Catholic Christians. There was no oil in the region. The state interests of Israel were not involved (indeed, Ariel Sharon publicly opposed the return of the Kosovar refugees to their homes on the grounds that it set an alarming—I want to say 'unsettling'—precedent). The usual national-security 'hawks,' like Henry Kissinger, were also strongly opposed to the mission. One evening at Edward's apartment, with the other guest being the mercurial, courageous Azmi Bishara, then one of the more distinguished Arab members of the Israeli parliament, I was finally able to leave the arguing to someone else. Bishara [...] was quite shocked that Edward would not lend public support to Clinton for finally doing the right thing in the Balkans. Why was he being so stubborn? I had begun by then—belatedly you may say—to guess. Rather like our then-friend Noam Chomsky, Edward in the final instance believed that if the United States was doing something, then that thing could not by definition be a moral or ethical action.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

Philip K. Dick
“Am I racially kin to this man? Baynes wondered. So closely so that for all intents and purposes it is the same? Then it is in me, too, the psychotic streak. A psychotic world we live in. The madmen are in power. How long have we known this? Faced this? And—how many of us do know it?”
Philip K. Dick, The Man in the High Castle

Walter Kaufmann
“No other German writer of comparable stature has been a more extreme critic of German nationalism than Nietzsche.”
Walter Kaufmann, On the Genealogy of Morals / Ecce Homo

Milton Sanford Mayer
“I wanted to tell him a story, but I didn't. It's a story about a Jew riding in a streetcar, in Germany during the Third Reich, reading Goebbels' paper, the Volkische Beobachter. A non-Jewish acquaintance sits down next to him and says, "Why do you read the Beobachter?" "Look," says the Jew, "I work in a factory all day. When I get home, my wife nags me, the children are sick, and there's no money for food. What should I do on my way home, read the Jewish newspaper? Pogrom in Romania' 'Jews Murdered in Poland.' 'New Laws against Jews.' No, sir, a half-hour a day, on the streetcar, I read the Beobachter. 'Jews the World Capitalists,' 'Jews Control Russia,' 'Jews Rule in England.' That's me they're talking about. A half-hour a day I'm somebody. Leave me alone, friend.”
Milton Sanford Mayer

Eric Metaxas
“With the tools of democracy, democracy was murdered and lawlessness made "legal." Raw power ruled, and its only real goal was to destroy all other powers besides itself.”
Eric Metaxas, Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy

“There was nothing conservative about Adolf Hitler. Hitler was an artist and a revolutionary at heart. He wanted to completely upend and remake German society.”
A.E. Samaan

John Maynard Keynes
“So it is not an accident that the Nazi lads vent a particular fury against (Einstein). He does truly stand for what they most dislike, the opposite of the blond beast intellectualist, individualist, supernationalist, pacifist, inky, plump... How should they know the glory of the free-ranging intellect and soft objective sympathy to whom money and violence, drink and blood and pomp, mean absolutely nothing?”
John Maynard Keynes

Charles Darwin
“I could show fight on natural selection having done and doing more for the progress of civilization than you seem inclined to admit. Remember what risk the nations of Europe ran, not so many centuries ago of being overwhelmed by the Turks, and how ridiculous such an idea now is! The more civilised so-called Caucasian races have beaten the Turkish hollow in the struggle for existence. Looking to the world at no very distant date, what an endless number of the lower races will have been eliminated by the higher civilized races throughout the world.”
Charles Darwin

Primo Levi
“There is no rationality in the Nazi hatred: it is hate that is not in us, it is outside of man.. We cannot understand it, but we must understand from where it springs, and we must be on our guard. If understanding is impossible, knowing is imperative, because what happened could happen again. Consciences can be seduced and obscured again - even our consciences. For this reason, it is everyone duty to reflect on what happened. Everybody must know, or remember, that when Hitler and Mussolini spoke in public, they were believed, applauded, admired, adored like gods. They were "charismatic leaders" ; they possessed a secret power of seduction that did not proceed from the soundness of things they said but from the suggestive way in which they said them, from their eloquence, from their histrionic art, perhaps instinctive, perhaps patiently learned and practised. The ideas they proclaimed were not always the same and were, in general, aberrant or silly or cruel. And yet they were acclaimed with hosannas and followed to the death by millions of the faithful.”
Primo Levi, If This Is a Man • The Truce

Hilda van Stockum
“It is much easier to believe lies than the truth."
"Why?" asked Janna.
"Because lies are manufactured to satisfy the emotions. A mother would rather believe her pretty girl lazy than accept the fact that she's a dumb cluck. Germans would rather believe they were stabbed in the back than that they lost a fair fight. And anyone would rather blame someone else for his misfortunes. The truth is hard. Don't fool with it unless you realize that.”
Hilda Van Stockum, The Borrowed House

“Antisemitism is unique among religious hatreds. It is a racist conspiracy theory fashioned for the needs of messianic and brutal rulers, as dictators from the Tsars to the Islamists via the Nazis have shown. Many other alleged religious 'hatreds' are not hatreds in the true sense. If I criticise Islamic, Orthodox Jewish or Catholic attitudes towards women, for instance, and I'm accused of being a bigot, I shrug and say it is not bigoted to oppose bigotry.”
Nick Cohen

Erich Fromm
“Ethical principles stand above the existence of the nation and that by adhering to these principles an individual belongs to the community of all those who share, who have shared, and who will share this belief.”
Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

Hannah Arendt
“For an ideology differs from a simple opinion in that it claims to possess either the key to history, or the solution for all the "riddles of the universe," or the intimate knowledge of the hidden universal laws which are supposed to rule nature and man. Few ideologies have won enough prominence to survive the hard competitive struggle of persuasion, and only two have come out on top and essentially defeated all others: the ideology which interprets history as an economic struggle of classes, and the other that interprets history as a natural fight of races. The appeal of both to large masses was so strong that they were able to enlist state support and establish themselves as official national doctrines. But far beyond the boundaries within which race-thinking and class-thinking have developed into obligatory patterns of thought, free public opinion has adopted them to such an extent that not only intellectuals but great masses of people will no longer accept a presentation of past or present facts that is not in agreement with either of these views.”
Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism

John Farndon
“Books can be immensely powerful. The ideas in them can change the way people think. Yet it was the Nazis and Stalin's officers who committed terrible crimes, and not Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto - and of course, the Manifesto contained many key ideas that are still relevant and important today, long after Stalin has gone. There is a crucial distinction between the book and its effect - it's crucial because if you talk about a book being harmful rather than its effect you begin to legitimise censorship. Abhorrent ideas need to be challenged by better ones, not banned.”
John Farndon, Do You Think You're Clever?: The Oxbridge Questions

Derrick Jensen
“The fundamental metaphor of National Socialism as it related to the world around it was the garden, not the wild forest. One of the most important Nazi ideologists, R.W. Darré, made clear the relationship between gardening and genocide: “He who leaves the plants in a garden to themselves will soon find to his surprise that the garden is overgrown by weeds and that even the basic character of the plants has changed. If therefore the garden is to remain the breeding ground for the plants, if, in other words, it is to lift itself above the harsh rule of natural forces, then the forming will of a gardener is necessary, a gardener who, by providing suitable conditions for growing, or by keeping harmful influences away, or by both together, carefully tends what needs tending and ruthlessly eliminates the weeds which would deprive the better plants of nutrition, air, light, and sun. . . . Thus we are facing the realization that questions of breeding are not trivial for political thought, but that they have to be at the center of all considerations, and that their answers must follow from the spiritual, from the ideological attitude of a people. We must even assert that a people can only reach spiritual and moral equilibrium if a well-conceived breeding plan stands at the very center of its culture.”
Derrick Jensen, The Culture of Make Believe

“Sin embargo, conocí a muchos internados que supieron ser fieles a su dignidad humana hasta el mismo fin. Los nazis lograron degradarlos físicamente, pero no fueron capaces de rebajarlos moralmente.
Gracias a estos pocos, no he perdido totalmente mi fe en la humanidad. Si en la misma jungla de Birkenau no todos fueron necesariamente inhumanos con sus hermanos hombres, indudablemente hay todavía esperanzas.
Esta esperanza es la que me hace vivir.”
Olga Lengyel

Christopher Hitchens
“Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, historians have become both more accurate and more honest—fractionally more brave, one might say—about that 'other' cleansing of the regions and peoples that were ground to atoms between the upper and nether millstones of Hitlerism and Stalinism. One of the most objective chroniclers is Professor Timothy Snyder of Yale University. In his view, it is still 'Operation Reinhardt,' or the planned destruction of Polish Jewry, that is to be considered as the centerpiece of what we commonly call the Holocaust, in which of the estimated 5.7 million Jewish dead, 'roughly three million were prewar Polish citizens.' We should not at all allow ourselves to forget the millions of non-Jewish citizens of Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, and other Slav territories who were also massacred. But for me the salient fact remains that anti-Semitism was the regnant, essential, organizing principle of all the other National Socialist race theories. It is thus not to be thought of as just one prejudice among many.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

“Yo no soy entendida en política ni economista. Soy simplemente una mujer que padeció, que perdió a su marido, a sus padres, a sus hijos y a sus amigos. Yo sé que el mundo tendrá que compartir colectivamente la responsabilidad. Los alemanes pecaron criminalmente, pero lo mismo hicieron las demás naciones aunque sólo sea por negarse a creer y a afanarse día y noche en salvar a los desventurados y desposeídos, por cuantos medios estuviesen a su alcance. Sé que si la gente de todo el mundo se propone que de ahora en adelante reine una justicia indivisible y que no haya más Hitlers, algos se conseguirá. Indudablemente, todos aquellos cuyas manos se hayan manchado con sangre nuestra, bien sea directa bien indirectamente, tienen que pagar por los crímenes que han cometido, lo mismo si son hombres que si son mujeres.”
Olga Lengyel

Christopher Hitchens
“What people still do not like to admit is that there were two crimes in the form of one. Just as the destruction of Jewry was the necessary condition for the rise and expansion of Nazism, so the ethnic cleansing of Germans was a precondition for the Stalinization of Poland. I first noticed this point when reading an essay by the late Ernest Gellner, who at the end of the war had warned Eastern Europeans that collective punishment of Germans would put them under Stalin's tutelage indefinitely. They would always feel the guilty need for an ally against potential German revenge.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

BatWhaleDragon
“Just because something is normal, does not make it morally justified. Case in point: Antisemitism in Nazi Germany.”
Narcissismus Decimus Maximus

Reinhard Heydrich
“Czechs are laughing beasts.”
Reinhard Heydrich

William S. Burroughs
“A Nazi initiation into the upper reaches of the SS was to gouge out the eye of a pet cat after feeding the cat and cuddling it for a month. This exercise was designed to eliminate all traces of pity-poison and mold a full Übermensch. There is a very sound magical postulate involved: the practitioner achieves superhuman status by performing some atrocious, revolting, subhuman act. In Morocco, magic men gain power by eating their own excrement.
But dig out Ruski’s eyes? Stack bribes to the radioactive sky. What does it profit a man? I could not occupy a body that could dig out Ruski’s eyes. So WHO gained the whole world? I didn’t. Any bargain involving exchange of qualitative values like animal love for quantitative advantage is not only dishonorable, as wrong as a man can get, it is also foolish. Because YOU get nothing. You have sold your YOU.”
William S. Burroughs, The Cat Inside

Etty Hillesum
“Riassumendo vorrei in realtà dire: la barbarie nazista fa sorgere in noi un'identica barbarie che procederebbe con gli stessi metodi, se noi avessimo la possibilità di agire oggi come vorremmo. Dobbiamo respingere interiormente questa inciviltà, non possiamo coltivare in noi quell'odio perché altrimenti il mondo non uscirà di un solo passo dalla melma.”
Etty Hillesum, Diario 1941-1943

Etty Hillesum
“Se anche non rimanesse che un solo tedesco decente, quest'unico tedesco meriterebbe di essere difeso contro quella banda di barbari, e grazie a lui non si avrebbe il diritto di riversare il proprio odio su un popolo intero. […] L'odio indiscriminato è una malattia dell'anima, odiare non è nel mio carattere.”
Etty Hillesum, Diario 1941-1943

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