The Banning of Art and the Real Monuments Men

David Yorkshire
Western Spring
October 19, 2014

Artwork by Dan Park

A few months ago, the usual suspects in Hollywood released yet another of their big-budget World War Two films, where we were treated to another instalment in that great mythology, complete with the post-modern pantheon of demons, the Nazis. I finally managed to see the film a few days ago. It is perhaps interesting, as an aside, that Germans never referred to themselves as Nazis and the term was rather an allied invention to make them sound more evil, just as the Viet Minh would later be propagandised as the Viet Cong.

At the beginning, we encounter an evil Nazi called Stahl – ‘Steel’ – whose job it is to steal art from its rightful owners – an incredible amount of whom are Jews, we are told. Repeatedly. A Cezanne, for example, has been hung on the wall of the ‘evil Nazi’s’ house after being stolen from the Rothschild Collection. You read that right: we have to feel sorry for the Rothschilds.

This is where the film’s message comes unstuck. All this artwork is going to be housed in the new Hitler Museum in Linz. In other words, it is going to be on public display, where everyone will be able to view these Gentile masterpieces. Yet our ‘heroes’ (George Clooney, John Goodman, Bill Murray, Matt Damon, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, Dimitri Leonidas and Bob Balaban) form a special squad to hunt down these treasures and put them back on private display or in bank vaults. One of the squad, born in Germany and named Epstein, has his own particular sob story: he was never allowed to look at a Rembrandt because he was barred from the art galleries as a Jew.

Of course, what is never looked at is the opposing perspective, the view of how such great Gentile art ended up in private Jewish hands. Certainly, many works were purchased during the 1920s, when ethnic Germans were impoverished via the hyperinflation caused by economic limitations stipulated in the Treaty of Versailles and by financial chicanery by the banks, an inordinate number of which were Jewish owned. Ethnic Germans were forced to sell their possessions at cut price to feed themselves and their families. Some Jews were also affected, but on the whole and as a group, they made hay during this period.


The other interesting theme about this film was how the ethnic Germans were portrayed as ‘philistines’. A philistine today means an uncultured person, yet the Biblical Philistines were a people ethnically cleansed by the Jews. Not only have they been the victims of genocide, but their memory has also been denigrated. The Wehrmacht is seen burning great paintings with flamethrowers rather than allowing them to fall into enemy hands.

Such scenes being shown this summer is particularly ironic, because, in this age of liberty and universal tolerance, no art is destroyed, is it? Well, in Sweden, the most ‘liberal and tolerant’ country in the West, the authorities recently destroyed the works of artist Dan Park, which were on display at the Rönnquist & Rönnquist gallery in Malmö. Not only that, but Park himself was sentenced to six months imprisonment for ‘defamation and inciting hatred against an ethnic group’. The gallery owner, Henrik Rönnquist was fined and received a suspended sentence.

Park’s work highlights the crimes committed against the Swedish population by ethnic minorities. One must remember that until recently, Malmö was the rape capital of Europe, before Rotherham in Britain took its place. In both towns, it has been overwhelmingly the indigenous populations that have been the victims and non-White colonisers that have been the perpetrators of this vile crime. Here again then, the leftist authorities throw in the gulags anyone who dare speak out against this systematic dehumanisation and genocide of the native European population – even artists.

Last year too, the Polish artist Jerzy Szumczyk was arrested by Polish police for putting on public display his sculpture Komm Frau, which was quickly taken down and carted away. The sculpture depicted a Red Army soldier raping a prostrate German woman at gunpoint and stood as a memorial to the hundreds of thousands of women who were raped by Russian soldiers under orders at the end of the Second World War. One should also note the ethnicity of many commissars.

It has never been otherwise. The left has basked in the lie that they are more tolerant and open-minded than the right, yet history proves otherwise. We know full well that artists in the Soviet Union were executed or sent to the gulags en masse. During the Great Purge, over a thousand were executed, the irony being that many were also extreme leftists. The left always devours its own.


What is rarely looked at, though, is what happened to artists with Fascist or National Socialist sympathies at the end of the Second World War. Certainly, it was never mentioned in the piece of hokum, Monuments Men. German composers, artists and writers were forbidden from continuing to practice their respective arts if they were deemed to have been sufficiently affiliated with the NSDAP. Many great works were also destroyed during Allied bombing campaigns. The city of Cologne had no military significance and was a centre of European culture, yet was targeted for saturation bombing.

Not only this, but writers were often summarily executed for having written ‘the wrong thing’. Robert Brasillach, a French fascist who was also a homosexual, the latter now beloved of the left, was tried and executed by firing squad. Paul Morand and arguably the greatest French novelist of the twentieth century, Louis-Ferdinand Céline (it is either him or Marcel Proust), were both sentenced to death, although later reprieved. Céline only escaped because he was in Denmark at the end of the war and Morand’s sentence was eventually commuted to time in prison instead.

The left often tell us that when governments start locking up the artists, it is a sure sign of totalitarianism. Well then the left in Western Europe have been most surely building to a totalitarian society since at least 1945. I am often brought to remember how the 1960s were kicked off with the Lady Chatterley’s Lover trial, which ended in that novel being published in unexpurgated edition for the first time in Britain, a novel which advocates adultery in the strongest terms. It was followed in 1971 by the Oz trial, when the undermining of our way of life was given free reign after the proprietors of Oz magazine were first convicted but then acquitted of obscenity and conspiring to corrupt public morals.

In both trials, the defendants claimed the right to free expression. Where, I wonder, are those people now? The fact is that they were never interested in free speech at all, but in opening the door to their ideas and then closing the door on our ideas, ideas that were once normative. Perhaps I and others involved in the creative arts in this movement will one day too find ourselves in the dock, but I, for one, will not bow down so easily, despite the fortunes of Dan Park and Jerzy Szumczyk. Let us spare a thought for those two men of courage.

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