Brainwashing the Germans
The following is part of Chapter III: “The Origins of Political Correctness and America’s Role in Its Perfection,” from  Dr. Tom Sunic’s book:  Homo Americanus; Child of the Postmodern Age (2007) .
In the aftermath of World War II, the role of the American-based Frankfurt School scholars and European Marxist intellectuals was decisive in shaping the new European cultural scene. Scores of American left-leaning psychoanalysts – under the auspices of the Truman government – swarmed over Germany in an attempt to rectify not just the German mind but also to change the brains of all Europeans. Frankfurt School activists were mostly of German-Jewish extraction who had been expelled by the German authorities during National Socialist rule and who, after the Second World War, came back to Europe and began laying the foundations for a new approach in the study of the humanities. But there were also a considerable number of WASP Puritan-minded scholars and military men active in post-war Germany, such as Major General McClure, the poet Archibald MacLeish, the political scientist Harold Laswell, the jurist Robert Jackson and the philosopher John Dewey, who had envisaged copying the American way of democracy into the European public scene. They thought of themselves as divinely chosen people called to preach American democracy – a procedure which would be used by American elites in the decades to come on each occasion and in every spot of the world.
Most of the new American educators, however, were former disciples of Freud and Marx, who considered that the best approach in curing defeated Germany was by treating Germans as a nation of “clinical patients” in need of a hefty dose of liberal and socialist therapy. The Frankfurt School, during its days of American exile, had already drafted various social theories as to how to cure Germany of its “authoritarian character.” Accordingly, its major spokesmen argued that “the German petite bourgeoisie has always demonstrated a sado-masochistic character, branded by veneration for the strong man, hatred against the weak, narrow-mindedness, pettiness, hostility, thriftiness, often bordering on miserliness (both in terms of their feelings and money).” In the decades to come it sufficed to be labeled a “Neo-Nazi” or a “radical right winger” in order to lose the right of free speech and become an intellectual pariah. Although the American provisional military government in Germany pursued the hunt for National Socialist dignitaries and brought many to [“]justice[“], it used the same tactics in the realm of German education and the media. It never crossed the mind of American post-war educators that their actions would facilitate the rise of Marxist cultural hegemony in Europe and lead to the prolongation of the Cold War.
As a result of Frankfurt School reeducational endeavors in Germany, thousands of book titles in the fields of genetics and anthropology were removed from library shelves and thousands of museum artifacts were, if not destroyed in the preceding Allied fire bombing, shipped to the USA and the Soviet Union. The liberal and communist tenets of free speech and freedom of expression did not apply at all to the defeated side which had earlier been branded as “the enemy of humanity.”
Particularly harsh was the Allied treatment of German teachers and academics. Since National Socialist Germany had significant support among German teachers and university professors, it was to be expected that the US reeducational authorities would start screening German intellectuals, writers, journalists and film makers. Having destroyed dozens of major libraries in Germany, with millions of volumes gone up in flames, the American occupying powers resorted to improvising measures in order to give some semblance of normalcy in what later became “the democratic Germany.” The occupying powers realized that universities and other places of higher learning could always turn into centers of civil unrest, and therefore, their attempts at denazifaction were first focused on German teachers and academics.
From the Allied viewpoint, and particularly from the viewpoint of the American military government, the universities, despite their undoubtedly great academic achievements in the past, were the breeding ground of reactionary nationalism conducted by the conservative oligarchy of professors. The focus of the universities was overspecialization by means of sharp delimitation between students as a unique elite versus the rest of the society. Moreover, education at the universities transmitted technical competence while neglecting social responsibility.
During the post-war screening of well-known figures from the German world of literature, thousands of German intellectuals were obliged to fill in questionnaires known in post-war Germany as Fragebogen. These questionnaires consisted of sheets of paper containing well over one hundred questions probing into all spheres of private, sexual, and political affinities of German suspects. The questions had many misspellings and their ultra-moralistic wording was often difficult for Germans to grasp. Had those “Fragebogen” not acquired a doomsday meaning for many Germans, they would have made good material for a Hollywood vaudeville. A German novelist and a former conservative revolutionary militant, Ernst von Salomon, describes in his satirical novel, Der Fragebogen, how the American “new pedagogues” extorted confessions from German captives, who were then either intellectually silenced or dispatched to the gallows.
There is still a perception in the liberal American establishment and its academia that women in National Socialist Germany were deprived of their rights and that their role consisted of shuttling from the church to the kitchen and then back to the children. Such comments, often to be heard and read by respectable liberal scholars in America, do not further the study of Fascism and National Socialism. They do, however, throw additional light on the genesis of political correctness in post-war and postmodern Europe. In many ways German women in the Third Reich had higher cultural and political visibility than anywhere else in Europe or America during the same epoch. Actresses like Leni Riefenstahl, Zarah Leander, and Joseph Goebbels’ friend (a Czech woman) Lida Baarova, or test aviation pioneer Hannah Reitsch and many other German women, played significant cultural roles in the Third Reich.
Among the new American educators, the opinion prevailed that the allegedly repressive European family was the breeding ground of political neurosis, xenophobia, and racism among young children:
“Whoever wishes to combat fascism must start from the premises that the central breeding ground for the reactionary person is represented by his family. Given that the authoritarian society reproduces itself in the structure of the individual through his authoritarian family, it follows that political reaction will defend the authoritarian family as the basis for its state, its culture and its civilization.”
Patrick J. Buchanan, an American conservative Catholic author and a former American presidential candidate, observes that Frankfurt School intellectuals in postwar Germany, bankrolled by the American military authorities, succeeded in qualifying National Socialist sympathizers as “mentally sick,” a term which would later have a lasting impact on political vocabulary and the future development of political rectitude in Europe and America. Political prejudice, notably, a sense of authority and the resentment of Jews, were categorized as mental illnesses rooted in traditional European child-rearing. Therefore, in the eyes of the American reeducational authorities, the old fashioned European family needed to be removed and with it some of its Christian trappings. Similar antifascist approaches to cultural purges were in full swing in Soviet-occupied Eastern Europe, but as subsequent events showed, the Western version of political correctness proved to be far more effective. In the early postwar years the Americans and their war allies carried out large scale intellectual purges in the media, notably with issuing special licenses to newly launched newspaper outlets in Germany. The words “Nazism” and “Fascism” gradually lost their original meaning and turned, instead, into synonyms of evil. The new educational principle of “reductio ad hitlerum” became a new paradigm for studying social sciences. A scholar who would slightly diverge from these newly installed antifascist pedagogical methods would have meager chances for career advancement if not outright fired. In some cases, even sixty years after the end of World War II, he would have to face stiff penalties, including a jail term.
During the same postwar period in communist Eastern Europe, Soviet-led cultural repression was far more severe, but, ironically, its vulgar transparency, as seen in previous chapters, gave its victims an aura of martyrdom. In addition, as the Cold War, by the end of the 40s, began to pit the communist East against the capitalist West, the ruling Western elites deemed it appropriate to come to the moral rescue of Eastern European anticommunist dissenters – less on the grounds of their anticommunist views, but more as a sign that the American liberal system was more tolerant than communism. However, at the end of the twentieth century, with the breakdown of communism and with Americanism and liberalism having become the dominant ideologies of the West, this ceased to be the case. The ideology of antifascism became by the late 20th century a form of negative legitimacy for the entire West. It implied that if there was no “fascist threat,” the West would cease to exist in its present from. Therefore, the simulacra of ever-resurgent fascism and anti-Semitism needed to be kept alive.
Shortly after 1945, and largely due to the process of reeducation of German society, Marxist theoreticians and militants in Western Europe implanted themselves as a “counter-power” in places of opinion making, although legally speaking, the West had never embraced communist ideology. Western European and American universities, particularly in the fields of social sciences, were thus in a position to field more true Marxist believers than their communist fellow travelers in Eastern Europe. In the following decades Western European political elites went a step further: in order to show to the American sponsors their democratic credentials and their philo-Semitic attitudes, they introduced strict legislation forbidding historical revisionism of the Second World War and any critical study of mass immigration into Western Europe, including the study of negative socio-economic consequences of multiculturalism and multiracialism.
After the Cold War, despite the increasing thought control in higher education, America remains, legally speaking, just about the only country in the West upholding some elements of free speech. By contrast, the much vaunted constitutional provisions stipulating freedom of speech and expression in other European countries stand in blatant contradiction to their individual penal codes which stipulate a prison sentence for a written comment or an uttered word that minimizes the Jewish Holocaust or trivializes the dogma of multiculturalism. Revisionist authors, or for that matter authors and academics critical of modern liberalism, are obliged to resort, more and more, to marginal publishing companies or strictly to the internet in order to have their words heard. The impression prevails that an author sympathetic to the legacy of right-wing conservatism must be mentally disturbed. At the beginning of the 21st century, the whole intellectual climate in America and especially in Europe came to resemble the medieval period by forbidding critical inquiry into “self evident truths” of liberal democracy and its chief mentor, America.
The case in point is postmodern Germany. Following the end of communism in the East, the German Criminal Code appears in its substance more repressive than the former Soviet Criminal Code. When silencing their critics, the German authorities do not need to resort to violent means. They usually create a cultural smearing campaign whereby a cultural heretic is portrayed as a funny, pseudo-scientific crank that does not merit a place in mainstream publishing houses. Moreover, the heretic is often induced into self-muzzling behavior, thereby disabling himself from being portrayed as a victim of state repression.
This postmodern mimicry of political rectitude has attained the same mendacious proportions regarding the relationship between America and Europe. In Germany, for instance, the country’s perception of the USA must coincide with its own self- perception as a self-flagellating pupil labeled once by the Frankfurt School as “a chronically sick patient state”. Day after day Germany has to prove that it can perform self-educational tasks better than its American tutor. It must show signs of being the most servile disciple of the American hegemon, given that the “transformation of the German mind (was) the main homework of the military regime.” If one wishes to grasp the concept of modern political correctness, one must study in detail the political psychology of the traumatized German people.
In Germany, contrary to England and America, there is a long legal tradition that everything is forbidden that is not explicitly allowed. In America and England, legal practice presupposes that everything is allowed that is not specifically forbidden. This may be the reason why Germany adopted after the Cold War stringent laws against independent minded intellectuals, often [clumsily] dubbed as “right-wingers,” or “Neo-Nazis.” In addition to frequent media vilification of local intellectual trouble makers, Germany also requires from its civil servants, pursuant to the Article 33, Paragraph 5, of its Basic Law, the obedience to constitutional commands, and not necessarily their loyalty to the people or to the state of Germany. Germany’s looming constitutional agencies, designed for the supervision of the constitution, have the task to control the purity of American imported democracy and the appropriate usage of the democratic meta-narrative. The famed “Office for the Protection of the Constitution” (”Verfassungschutz”), as the German legal scholar Josef Schüsselburner writes, “is basically an internal secret service with seventeen branch agencies (one on the level of the federation and sixteen others for each constituent federal state). In the last analysis, this boils down to saying that only the internal secret service is competent to declare a person an internal enemy of the state.”
Given that all signs of nationalism, let alone racialism [even the faintest semblance of the pursuit of ethnic interests], are reprimanded in Germany, on the ground of their real or purported unconstitutional and undemocratic character, the only patriotism allowed is “constitutional patriotism.” “The German people had to adapt itself to the constitution, instead of adapting the constitution to the German people,” writes the German legal scholar, Günther Maschke. This new form of German secular religion, i.e. “constitutional patriotism,” which has now become mandatory for all citizens in the European Union, encompasses a belief in the rule of law and so-called open society. Under cover of tolerance and civil society, it is considered legally desirable to hunt down European heretics who voice doubts in the legal premises of parliamentary democracy or who criticize some aspects of modern historiography.
Furthermore, in view of the fact that Western societies have also changed their social and ethnic profile, the interpretation of existing laws must also be subject to the political circumstances on the ground. German constitutionalism, continues Schüsselburner, has become “a civil religion,” whereby “multiculturalism has replaced Germans with citizens who do not regard Germany as their homeland, but as an imaginary “Basic Law Land”(…). As a result of this new civil religion, Germany, along with other European countries, has now evolved into a “secular theocracy.”
Since the end of the Cold War, all over Europe, the social arena has been designed as a replica of a huge market. In America and Europe, the free market itself has become a form of an additional secular religion whose principles must be encompassed in the judiciary of each country. In a similar fashion, raising critical questions about the viability of the market can also cause an author professional troubles. It is considered conventional wisdom that any flaw of the market can and must be cured by the infusion of more free market principles and more “invisible hand” friendly policies. Economic efficiency is seen as the sole criterion for any social interaction. Hence, individuals, who may have some second thoughts about the founding myths of liberal economy, are seen as enemies of the system.
Also, books dealing with themes that critically examine parliamentary democracy, or the role of America in World War II, or authors questioning antifascist victimology, are less and less accessible in mainstream publishing companies. Books or journals challenging the [“]official[“] number of fascist crimes during the Second World war or disputing the body-count in the Jewish Holocaust, are banned and their authors often end up in prison. Similar to Communism, historical truth in Western Europe is not established by an open academic debate but by state legislation. In addition, scientists whose expertise is in genetically induced social behavior, or who lay emphasis on the role of I.Q. in human achievement, while downplaying the importance of education and social environment, are branded as racists. **The entire West, including America itself, has become a victim of collective guilt which, strangely enough, is induced more by intellectual self-denial and by Christian inspired atonement, and less by state repression.**
In politically correct America, the academic language is also subject to hygienic rules. New qualifiers emerge among would-be heretics serving as disclaimers for their controversial thoughts. In the eyes of new inquisitors an intellectual right-wing heretic must be monitored – not on the basis of what he has said or wrote, but on the basis of whom he saw and met. “Guilt by association” hampers someone’s career and ruins the life of a diplomat, a politician, or an academic who ventures as a speaker into some right-wing or racialist literary circle, or who attends a venue where the contents of a revisionist book are discussed. Any idea critically examining the foundations of egalitarianism, democracy, and multiculturalism becomes suspicious. Declaring oneself a “conservative” is also dangerous. Even the mildest forms of cultural conservatism are gradually pushed into the category of “right-wing extremism,” or “white supremacism.” And these qualifiers are disarming enough to silence even the most vocal heretic. “There is a typical European form of political correctness, which consists of seeing fascism everywhere,” writes the French Jewish philosopher Alain Finkielkraut, although with his former endorsement of the previous antirevisionist laws in France, from 1990, it is questionable whether Finkielkraut always means what he writes. In November 2005, Finkielkraut was himself called to account by the French antiracist agency MRAP for his alleged deprecatory statements against rioting French blacks and Arabs in France, an event which the author described in an interview to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz. Thy irony is that Finkielkraut, along with many French and American court historians and philosophers of postmodernity, and very similar to American neoconservatives, was once upon a time a supporter of Marxist-inspired multiculturalism. Now, wearing his neo-con skin, he seems to be the victim of his own theories. The “Finkielkraut syndrome” is quite common among former communist sympathizers, who became ardent anticommunists and liberals when Marxism ran out of fashion. The only problem is that a lot of people have died in the process – as a result of their erstwhile intellectual Marxist and antifascist fantasies.
As much as American imported liberalism rejects and punishes racial stereotypes, it does not hesitate to use stereotyping when depicting its own cultural or political enemies. When Muslims and Islamists residing in America or Europe become the perpetrators of street riots or terrorism, the modern system tolerates name calling and the sporadic usage of anti-Arab slurs. Conversely, a Muslim American resident or a Muslim living in Europe can often get away with anti-Semitic or anti-Israeli remarks, which a Gentile citizen, or a scholar, cannot even dream about – for fear of being called by the dreaded word “anti-Semite.” Thus, the ruling class in America and Europe successfully resorts to the scarecrow of debate-stopping words, such as “anti-Semitism” and “Neo-Nazism,” as an alibi for legitimizing its perpetual status quo. **The specter of a projected catastrophic scenario must silence all free spirits.** Naturally, if fascism is legally decreed as absolute evil, any aberration in the liberal system will automatically appear as a lesser evil. The modern liberal system, which originated in America, functions as a self-perpetuating machine of total mind control.
Paul Gottfried, The Strange Death of Marxism (Columbia and London: University of Missouri Press, 2005), p.108.
Caspar Schrenck Notzing, Characterwäsche (Stuttgart: Seewald Verlag, 1965), p.115.
Caspar Schrenck Notzing, p.120.
Manfred Heinemann und Ulrich Schneider, Hochschuloffiziere und Wiederaufbau des Hochschulwesens in Westdeutschland, 1945-1952) (Editon Bildung und Wissenschaft, 1990), pp. 2-3 and passim. Also, Die Entnazifizierung in Baden 1945-1949 (Stuttgart: W Kohlhammer Verlag, 1991), regarding the process of purging German teachers and professors by French occupying forces in the occupied German province of Baden. Approximately 35 to 50 % of teachers in the American occupied parts of Germany were suspended and barred from teaching and other research activities. The percentage of suspension in the French occupied parts of Germany was between 12- 15%. See Hermann Josef Rupieper, Die Wurzeln der westdeutschen Nachkriegesdemokratie (Westdeutscher Verlag), p.137.
Hermann Josef Rupieper, p.137.
Ernst von Salomon, Der Fragebogen (1951 Hamburg: Rowohlt, 1999).
Tomislav Sunic, “L’Art dans le IIIème Reich: 1933-45,” Ecrits de Paris (July-August, 2002), pp.30-36. Women were quite active in the Third Reich. A famous German Olympic female athlete, the Olympics champion, Tilly Fleischer (1911-2005); two famous women pilots, Elly Beinhorn (1907) and Hanna Reitsch (1912-1979); a Head of the League of National Socialist Woman Gertrud Scholtz-Klink (1902-1999), etc.
Caspar Schrenck Notzing, p.11.
Patrick Buchanan, The Death of the West (New York: St Martin’s Press, 2002), pp.82-83.
Serge Thion, Historische Wahrheit oder politische Wahrheit? (Berlin: Verlag der Freunde, 1994). The book discusses the fate of the French professor of literature, Robert Faurisson, who has been since 1977 in social and academic disgrace due to his skeptical accounts regarding the number of Holocaust victims.
In the age of electronic media and due to anti-revisionist laws, prominent European and American historians, but also some racialists, resort to the use of different web sites.
Caspar Schrenck Notzing, p.140.
Josef Schüsslburner, Demokratie-Sonderweg Bundesrepublik (Lindenblatt Media Verlag. Künzell, 2004), p.631.
Günther Maschke, Das bewaffnete Wort (”Die Verschwörung der Flakhelfer”) (Wien und Lepzig: Karolinger Verlag, 1997) p. 74.
Marc Perelman, “Europe Seen Cracking Down on Holocaust Revisionists,” in Forward, November 25, 2005.
Alain Finkielkraut, “Résister au discours de la dénonciation” in Journal du Sida, April 1995. Also “What sort of Frenchmen are They?” interview with Alain Finkielkraut in Haaretz, November 17, 2005. As was to be expected, there was an outcry in leftist journals in France following his interview. In his subsequent interview in Le Monde, under the title “J’assume,” of November 26, 2005, Finkielkraut resorts to new wordings and disclaimers in order to justify his earlier critical remarks about the Arab youth rioting in France.
Alain de Benoist, “Die Methoden der Neuen Inquistion,” in Schöne vernetzte Welt (Tübingen: Hohenrain Veralg, 2001), pp.190-205.
Article printed from The Civic Platform – A Political Journal of Ideas and Analysis: http://www. thecivicplatform. com
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