The Nazis weren’t Socialists, FFS... Gerry McCann
Conservative MEP Syed Kamall has now become the latest in a long line of confused souls claiming that Hitler & his Nazi party were, in actual fact, Socialists. Speaking in the European Parliament Mr Kamall addressed the following reply to Udo Bullmann, President of the European Parliament Socialists grouping;
“Mr Bullmann, I would remind you when you talk about right-wing populists we have to remember that Nazi’s were national socialists. It is a strain of socialism. Let’s not pretend… it is a left-wing ideology, they want the same things as you, let’s be quite clear.”
This reminded me of various arguments I have been unfortunate enough to engage in online, usually with individuals with a strong inclination for nominative determinism. I can only assume they were bitterly disappointed with the level of political enfranchisement during their recent family holiday to the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea.
For those who are still confused by the ‘National Socialist’ moniker, here is a handy (but by no means extensive) list of reasons why the Nazi Party were not Socialist.
1. This quote from Hitler in 1933 while usurping the existing Socialist government;
“The government will not protect the economic interests of the German people by the circuitous method of an economic bureaucracy to be organised by the state, but by the utmost furtherance of private initiative and by the recognition of the rights of property,”. Furtherance of private initiative is literally the opposite of Socialism.
2. This quote from Richard Evans, a historian who wrote a 3-volume study on Nazi Germany, and who can reasonably claim to have better knowledge of Hitlers' action & intentions better than you or I given that the study of Nazism was his life's work “…it would be wrong to see Nazism as a form of, or an outgrowth of, socialism.” (The Coming of the Third Reich, Evans, p. 173). Not only was Hitler not a socialist himself, nor a communist, but he actually hated these ideologies and did his utmost to eradicate them. At first this involved organising bands of thugs to attack socialists in the street, but grew into invading Russia, in part to enslave the population and earn ‘living ‘ room for Germans, and in part to wipe out communism and ‘Bolshevism’.
3. Nazism is an ideology built around race and identity. Socialism is an ideology built around class regardless of race or identity. You can't be racist and correctly follow Socialist ideology as the 2 are mutually exclusive.
4. Hitler attempted to dismantle Germany's trade unions & supported industrialists. He used anti-communist & Socialist propaganda to make upper & middle class voters scared of workers. This is because he was, first & foremost, a political opportunist.
5. There was no socialist redistribution of wealth or land under Hitler.
6. He executed prominent socialists in the Nazi Party in 1934 in the historical event known as 'the night of the long knives'. Gregor Strasser was one of these.
7. He believed Socialism was a Jewish ideology & Socialists were among the first people to be sent to the concentration camps.
8. Hitler said this about the working class "The great masses of workmen want nothing else than bread and amusement; they have no understanding of idealism; and we can never count on being able to gain any considerable support among them. What we want is a picked number from the new ruling class, who – unlike you – are not troubled with humanitarian feelings, but who are convinced that they have the right to rule as being a superior race, and who will secure and maintain their rule ruthlessly over the broad masses.”
9. He said this of Industrialists "they “have worked their way to the top by their own abilities, and this proof of their capacity – a capacity only displayed by a higher race – gives them the right to lead.”
10. He said this on Socialism “Socialism is in itself a bad word [if it is used literally]. But it is certainly not to be taken as meaning that industry must be socialised.”
11. Socialists use a welfare system to support the weak in society. Hitler euthanised them. He literally murdered them. Let that sink in.
12. Martin Niemoller (a contemporary and enemy of Hitler's) who was responsible for this famous quote
"First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me."
13. Marxism is defined by class war, and socialism is accomplished with the total victory of the Proletariat over the ruling classes. By contrast, Hitler offered an alliance between labour and capital in the form of corporatism – with the express purpose of preventing class war. Again the OPPOSITE of Socialism.
14. George Bernard Shaw described Hitlers' Socialism as fraudulent & called it the 'latest mask of capitalism'.
15. The Nazis privatised Steelworks, 4 banks & the railways.
For anyone still confused, I’d recommend steering clear of Super Noodles, you might find them to be a bit of a let down.