In Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” we can read: “The mind of the masses is not responsive for all that is undecided or weak.” The masses loved “more the ruler than the pleader and its soul was more satisfied by a teaching that does not suffer any rivals than by the concession of freedom; they hardly know how to deal with it and easily feel lost. […] Thus it only sees the ruthless force and brutality of its purposeful expression to which it will always yield eventually.”
A few days ago we could read in a renowned German newspaper: “Like thunder the military attacks on Afghanistan and Syria have signalled with that new US President has to be considered a relevant actor in global politics. Both actions have won Donald Trump some respect – not only in his own country …” Indeed – at least with the elite of the NATO states.
The daily cited above, however, also includes the following assessment: “… even if they do not provide any essential contribution to the solution of the conflicts in Syria or Afghanistan.”
In the past 250 years the Anglo-Saxons have led hundreds of wars – more than any other states in the world. It seems like the principle to respond to conflicts with violence has been a constant of Anglo-Saxon politics. Hermann Ploppa’s carefully researched book of 2008, “Hitlers amerikanische Lehrer. Die Eliten der USA als Geburtshelfer des Nationalsozialismus (Hitler’s American teachers. US elites as midwives for National Socialism)”, which mainly refers to racism, could well be complemented with an additional chapter regarding the idolatry of power and violence.
But: continental European (or non-European) should not feel above this. We all can ask ourselves about our reaction towards power and power seekers. Are there still remainders of an inner submission under those that seem powerful and perform with pithy words and deeds? World history is full of Caesars and strongmen. To fear power and to admire it at the same time; the wish to be really “powerful” for once … are we really immune against it?
But if we seriously reflect, we do know: it is not only true in Syria and Afghanistan that power and power politics do not solve any problems. This is why Willy Wimmer’s statement is essential for our survival: “Only one thing remains: detach yourself from the Anglo-Saxon elites” … and to avoid being drawn into another war … which may lead to the destruction of us all.
But it can only be sustainable if also the continental European states change their politics fundamentally. The remaining part of the EU after the British exit has no perspective for the future. It will not be possible to dissolve the EU quickly – and the question for an alternative needs to be discussed thoroughly – but it is important that the citizens are leading this debate without surrendering it to the elites. The fact alone that citizens are leading an honest, open and equal debate is the best prevention against being rabbit-like mesmerized by the snake … and the foundation for a new Europe – one that is connected with the best European traditions which were resulting in a liberal, democratic and social state of law maintaining equal relations to all other states and peoples and adhering to the imperative of negotiations and peace. •
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