May 2, 2015
From the New York Times:
Why Old Nazis Are Still Useful By ANNA SAUERBREY MAY 1, 2015
BERLIN — THE trial of Oskar Gröning, the 93-year-old “accountant of Auschwitz,” began last week in the German city of Lüneburg.
… It is one of the last chances we will have to hear the victims and seek justice from someone who actually participated in the Holocaust. The rapid disappearance of the “Zeitzeugen,” the contemporary witnesses — both survivors and perpetrators — will change how we Germans think about ourselves. Especially the perpetrators; in a bizarre way, we will miss them when they’re gone. …
We must find a new narrative, a new way to ensure “never again.” Not through ideology, but through action — for example by more generously helping the refugees that seek asylum in our country. Instead of trying to transfer a vague feeling of inherited guilt to yet another generation, we should change from remembering what we must never forget to knowing why.
Anna Sauerbrey, an editor on the opinion page of the newspaper Der Tagesspiegel, is a contributing opinion writer.
This is a very defeatist attitude on the part of Fraulein Sauerbrey. Letting in a few hundred million of the four billion Africans of 2100 is a weak substitute for having genuine Nazis around to deplore.
Germans are good at technology, so they should drop everything to find a technological fix for keeping old Nazis alive so we will never live in an age without trials of Nazis. Find some 86-year-olds who were 16 in 1945 and resolve to keep at least one alive by all means necessary until he can be put on trial in 2050 at age 121.
Or, Germany should launch a Manhattan Project to download elderly Nazi brains to computers so the world will never run out of Nazis to prosecute.
Or keep one Nazi brain alive in a jar.
UC Berkeley historian Yuri Slezkine explained in his award-winning 2004 book The Jewish Century the religious significance of keeping Nazis viable:
Nazism … defined evil clearly, consistently, and scientifically. It shaped a perfect theodicy for the Age of Nationalism. It created the devil in its own image.
The question of the origins of evil is fundamental to any premise of redemption. Yet all modern religions [i.e., Marxism, Freudianism, and Zionism] resembled Christianity in being either silent or confused on the subject. … Marxism gave no clear answer; Leninism did not foresee a massive regeneration of the exterminated enemies; and Stalin’s willing executioners were never quite sure why they were executing some people and not others.
Nazism was unique in the consistency and simplicity of its theodicy. … A universe presided over by Man received an identifiable and historically distinct group of human beings as its first flesh-and-blood devil. The identity of the group might change, but the humanization and nationalization of evil proved durable. When the Nazi prophets were exposed as impostors and slain in the apocalypse they had unleashed, it was they who emerged as the new devil in a world without God — the only absolute in the Post-Prophetic Age.