PDA

View Full Version : Germany: PC madness strikes again



CHDT
03-24-2005, 12:50 PM
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/printFriendly/0%2C%2C1-3-1537306-3%2C00.html

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>March 23, 2005

German veterans on the warpath over law disowning Nazi pilot ace
From Roger Boyes in Berlin

MORE than 100 retired military officers protested furiously yesterday against plans to disown the name of one of Germany‚‚ā¨ôs most famous wartime fighter aces.

They have signed an open letter to German newspapers seeking to restore the reputation of Werner M√¬∂lders, who shot down 115 aircraft, including many flown by RAF pilots during the Battle of Britain.

Despite being treated as a hero by the Nazi propaganda machine, Colonel M√¬∂lders was regarded as a suitable model for young West German soldiers after the war and his name ‚‚ā¨"Ě along with that of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel ‚‚ā¨"Ě was attached to navy destroyers, an airbase in Neuburg and an army barracks in Lower Saxony.

Now Peter Struck, the Defence Minister, is to enforce a 1998 law that bans any honour being bestowed on the German volunteers who served in the Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War, including Colonel M√¬∂lders. German pilots, wearing the uniform of the Spanish Fascists, bombed the Basque city of Guernica, killing thousands.

Colonel M√¬∂lders did not take part in the bombing ‚‚ā¨"Ě he was a fighter not a bomber pilot. However, he did shoot down 14 aircraft during the civil war and, according to recent research, took part in a battle on the River Ebro that claimed many civilian casualties.

The protesting officers, including many generals, are aghast at Herr Struck‚‚ā¨ôs decision. Under the guise of a birthday commemoration, the officers published a glowing tribute yesterday to a ‚‚ā¨Ňďmodel soldier and fighter pilot‚‚ā¨¬Ě.

The tribute was a statement of their ‚‚ā¨Ňďsympathy for the members of the Fighter Squadron 74 after it has been stripped of the traditional name Werner M√¬∂lders‚‚ā¨¬Ě.

It is not only veterans who are furious; the whole conservative Establishment is grumbling at the way history is, in their view, being made politically correct. The dispute cuts to the heart of the 60th anniversary celebrations of the end of the war: who counts as a war hero for modern Germans?

G√ľnter Fromm, a retired admiral, fumed in the letters column of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper yesterday about ‚‚ā¨Ňďthe new idea of tradition that is being prepared for our army‚‚ā¨¬Ě.

There is little doubt that the retired officers are speaking for disgruntled serving officers. The airmen are required now to cut off their armbands marked with the name M√¬∂lders. For a unit with a half-century of tradition, this represents a big humiliation.The law against the Condor Legion slipped through parliament on the eve of a holiday weekend, with only 25 deputies present in the chamber. It did not spring out of a popular revulsion at German actions in the Spanish Civil War.

Despite being decorated with the Iron Cross by Hitler and enjoying the admiration of Hermann Goering, the air force chief, Colonel M√¬∂lders did not seem to be a politically controversial figure, but a recent television programme looking at the life of Colonel M√¬∂lders nudged the Defence Minister into action and has opened a new debate about war heroism.

The key question is how close Colonel M√¬∂lders came to the Nazis. His defenders point to the fact that he celebrated a Roman Catholic wedding in 1941, an unusual act for someone intending to make a career in the higher echelons of Hitler‚‚ā¨ôs army.

During the Second World War, the British tried to exploit this ambiguity towards the regime and forged a letter from Colonel M√¬∂lders appearing to protest against the Nazi suppression of the Catholic Church.

The letter was dropped, in leaflet form, over the Catholic city of M√ľnster in the hope of strengthening religious-based resistance to Hitler. The leaflet claimed that the colonel had been murdered by the SS who had staged his fatal air crash.

The truth seems less prosaic. Colonel M√¬∂lders was a dedicated pilot who enjoyed shooting down aircraft. His own crashed, not because of an SS conspiracy, but because it was flying through fog and smashed into a factory chimney. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

ARM505
03-24-2005, 02:05 PM
Thats f***king ridiculous. Sacrifice your history on the PC altar, you'll lose it forever. I will still consider him, and those like him on all sides, airmen of legend.

stansdds
03-24-2005, 02:14 PM
Those who forget their history are doomed to repeat its mistakes.

I am certainly not saying that we should glorify the Nazi regime, but it should not be forgotten and that includes those who fought under that regime. In the U.S. we have statues, memorials and what not for Confederate soldiers and officers.

Panzer_JG11
03-24-2005, 02:18 PM
Give me a break!! I just can't believe it. I'm seek now. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif

flyplenty
03-24-2005, 04:05 PM
What a strange decision, after all this time. Does this mean JG74 loses M√¬∂lders' name? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif

Franzonto
03-24-2005, 06:23 PM
For acting like this, the government shall only earn the contrary. Everything will only end in another extreme if this goes on, and I will certainly support such an extreme, since only by that will our leaders learn that we want a balance, instead of such uncalled-for humilation.

Only because of such acts, can I feel happy acting against the law... Oh how I hope the backslash will be furious. However long it might take.

Blackdog5555
03-24-2005, 10:54 PM
Guys like Gunther Rall held many important international positions NATO etc. I believe we in the west dont blame the soldier at all. (well Waffen SS is a different story). But yes that's too far. Japan has Shrines to Tojo which infuriates me. He was a horrific war criminal. but guys like Suboro Sakai or Molders were just soldiers/pilots who fought with honour. mostly.

Gog..
03-25-2005, 06:04 AM
There was a time in the past when a previous German Chancellor demanded that a certain unit remove their cuff titles and return them to Berlin as he felt that they were no longer fit to wear them. The Commanding Officer of that unit did not pass that order onto his men. Many of them removed their cuff titles and burned them in defiance of the Chancellors order.

Sometimes, a man must stand up for what he knows is right, even if it defies the law of his homeland and the men of Fighter Sqn 74 need to do that now. It is great to see that the veterans are right there with the serving men of that unit who cannot speak out but I suspect that they will be protesting in their own way and bloody good on them!

This is typical for PC Europe and it's attempts to whitewash history. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif

TgD Thunderbolt56
03-25-2005, 06:32 AM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-indifferent.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif

EJGr.Ost_chamel
03-25-2005, 06:38 AM
The important part is:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
Now Peter Struck, the Defence Minister, is to enforce a 1998 law that bans any honour being bestowed on the German volunteers who served in the Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War, including Colonel M√¬∂lders. German pilots, wearing the uniform of the Spanish Fascists, bombed the Basque city of Guernica, killing thousands. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

This law has been passed years ago, and I think, taking into account the horrible international reputation of the Legion Condor, this decision was right.
I would be very interested to hear from some spanish folks, how the Legion Condor is seen in Spain today!

Greetings
Chamel

EJGr.Ost_chamel
03-25-2005, 06:55 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Gog..:
This is typical for PC Europe and it's attempts to whitewash history. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Sorry, but I don't understand you! You mean, stopping the use of WWII heroes' names for units of german arned forces means "whitewashing" history??? I think it's the opposite!
I think, remembering these heroes without thinking about all the difficult question around their involvement in the nazi regime would mean whitewashing!
Yes, M√¬∂lders was a hero and a great Pilot and tactician! His involvement in the regime can be disussed controversially. I myself tend to say, that he was not only a simple pilot fighting for his country, but that his high rank in the luftwaffe hierarchy made him part of the nazi regime - but that is only my opinion. But as long as there remains any such suspicion, the name "M√¬∂lders" is not qualified as a name for a unit of the german armed forces as these names have to represent the democratic post-war germany all over the world!

My 2 cents
Chamel

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 09:00 AM
Great debate about this topic, and its interesting to hear from both sides of the aisle regarding it. Look, the Enola Gay is one of the most visible artifacts from World War 2. Many debate that it saved American lives by shortening the war (and many other issues involving the USSR). Then some would say its not so sporting dropping an A -Bomb on a clearly civilian target because its effects could be better measured. What it all comes down to is "to the victor goes the spoils". And if you're Japanese or German nationals, this is the price you pay for your government's policies generations ago.

Franzonto
03-25-2005, 09:19 AM
EyeoftheChicken, you hit the nail on the head. But still, also in reference to EJGr.Ost_chamel, one must consider that nobody but Germany's own government is trying to force that upon its people (or soldiers), nobody else. So it's not like there's an obligation to do what the winners do anyway (with everyone respecting their authority over such rather private questions).
We should be thankful that the USA don't rule over Germany with an Iron Fist anymore, and we should use that freedom to create equality; as said, by doing what the winners do anyway.

Even the French and the British do that as if it was the most normal thing in the world, and their wests are all but clean. So also in order to fight hipocrisy, this demanded policy should be defied.

Capt._Tenneal
03-25-2005, 09:26 AM
Isn't there squadrons in the current Luftwaffe named for Steinhoff and also the WW I aces : Boelcke, Richtofen, etc. ? No one's talking about taking their names off of these squadrons. I guess what worked against Molders was that he died during the war and did not have the chance to "redeem" himself by joining the postwar Luftwaffe as Steinhoff, Hartmann or Rall did.

PraetorHonoris
03-25-2005, 09:46 AM
The "funny" thing is: M√¬∂lders was against Hitler's policy in his last days!
He protested against the unfair treatment of the church and the priests (who often tried to help victims of the regime).
His protest was so intense, that he refused to wear the medals, which Hitler had given to him and he did not obey to orders, he did not like.
Unfortunatly he died soon after that... many people thought, he was assinated by Hitler...

Just remember - this was 1941: the Nazis were at the height of their power and people like Stauffenberg did not even thought on resistance, when M√¬∂lders did resist.

I think, he is a great man!

Even more "funny", the JG74 could be renamed into Geschwader "Marseilles"!

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 09:52 AM
Im not too sure about this, but isnt the current govenrment in Germany a coalition of Social Democrats and Greens (foreign Minister is a Green)? As I remember, they always took an opposing stance to any sort of militarisation.

Capt., I think his early death and lack of postwar redemption have alot to do with this.

Capt._Tenneal
03-25-2005, 09:52 AM
So what about the "Molders" submarine of the Navy ? Will that be renamed too ?

PraetorHonoris
03-25-2005, 09:56 AM
There was a destroyer named "M√¬∂lders", it is already out of service.
Our u-boats don't have names, only numbers.

J_Weaver
03-25-2005, 09:58 AM
This is all very interesting. Being American I can't say I know how Europe and mainly Germany feels about what happened in WWII. I have several cousins that are French. (French born, not Americans living in France) One day we were talking about WWII and I was explianing about WWII reenacting in the US. He said that in Europe WWII is still to 'fresh' to play war at it. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I can understand both sides. But this seems almost like a slap in the face to German vets from WWII. Unfortunately, any German in a position of power during WWII is labeled as evil. Even a colonel in the Luftwaffe such as Molders. I heard a vet say that there is not need to fear what happened in WWII; but the danger is when it is all forgotten.

DuxCorvan
03-25-2005, 10:05 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EJGr.Ost_chamel:
I would be very interested to hear from some spanish folks, how the Legion Condor is seen in Spain today!
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

OK. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

To be honest, most Spaniards ignore completely the activities of German military contingents in Spain. The most just blame General Franco for this action without caring about details.

Moral jugdments are based above all in every one's political view, as all Spanish views about Spanish Civil War are still too biased by political ideals, old hate feelings and harsh family stories to give rational and objective opinions.

Fortunately, my family comprised people from both sides and we lost nobody near us. This, and my own skeptical character about politics allows me to give more or less aseptical visions about that war issues.

My opinion is that Guernica bombing (around 500 dead), even being another terrible tragedy and a foreteller of what would happen later, wasn't such a disaster compared to later bombings during WW2, nor even compared to the mass political murders both sides of SCW committed against unprevented civilians.

The fame of Guernica comes from the dantesque vision that known activists, members of international press (namely Malraux) gave in an effort to present Nationalist side as ruthless agents of destruction. That, and the infamous picture by Picasso -which was not named 'Guernica' until months after having been painted, when Picasso knew the news and baptised what was going to be a general vision of war, and it's one of the ugliest pics ever, IMHO- made of Guernica bombing the perfect propaganda instrument for international fight against fascism in general, and Franco's regime in particular.

Since dictator Franco is -for well motivated reasons after nearly forty years of political repression- extremely impopular in Spain, you'll hardly find anyone to defend anything that can directly or indirectly be related to him.

But, IMHO, the supression of M√¬∂lders name is another revenge-like stupid action by some kind of too-sensitive-to-live-on-earth cocoon-born poet of tolerance and modernity... if one wants to prove that wounds are far to be healed, these news are the better sample, and these actions don't contribute to make them heal sooner, but act precisely in the contrary way.

I see it like that.

Capt._Tenneal
03-25-2005, 10:17 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by PraetorHonoris:
There was a destroyer named "M√¬∂lders", it is already out of service.
Our u-boats don't have names, only numbers. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

That's what I was trying to remember, thanks. I knew the navy had a ship named for Molders. So it was a zerstorer...

and @ J_Weaver : Molders rose to the rank of General of Fighters in the Luftwaffe. He held the position before Galland was elevated to it after Molder's death. He wasn't a mere colonel. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Gog..
03-25-2005, 10:17 AM
Post war Germany is trying very hard to be seen to be making up for the past. It is true that they have a lot to be apologetic for but for how long are they expected to do this? And to what lengths do they think that they have to go before it is enough?
For some people, no matter how hard they try, Germany will always be 'to blame', even when the people that lived those days are long dead. This is the way some people think, they are a minority but a powerful and influential one and it is to them that the German government is pandering to.

The world has been so brainwashed by the victors that they too, now generalise all Germans from that era as 'bad'. There were many greater injustices perpetrated upon their fellow man by the allies than the actions of the Legion Condor in Spain, yet they go unknown or unheralded and more importantly, un-investigated.
The current German Government when dealing with a regime like the Nazi's, which had no shortage of villains, to single out people like Werner Molders for such treatment is sad, but as I said above, it is a sign of them trying to be seen to be 'doing the right thing'.

If they really wanted to be fair, they would be attacking a great many other National Heroes from WW2. The point is, many Germans have flown under the radar and escaped this kind of treatment, are the do-gooders running out of targets? Are they busily rummaging through old records to see who they can disgrace?
As far as I am concerned, the victors had their chance at revenge, and that ended when the trials at Nuremburg concluded. From that day on, Germany has built and struggled it's way back to acceptance in Europe and the world, to dig up and re-hash the past in this selective manner is unfair. How many allied activities are being equally scrutinised along with the heroes of the past? Do we need to look a little closer at Eisenhower, Montgomery, Patton, etc or lower our sights to the easier meat like the German Government has done and look at the lesser heroes of the day like the pilots and Corps and Division commanders.
How would people feel if the Germans had won and dragged Douglas Bader up on charges?
The German Government will continue to try to whitewash, yes whitewash, the past while the people stand idle and let it happen and while the victors in far away countries continue to see the German people as 'bad' and deserving of this treatment.

ploughman
03-25-2005, 12:42 PM
I'm not sure that people see Germans as bad, but the burden of history certainly weighs heavily upon them and it must be a crushing weight.

One of the lessons of fascism is that everbody is at least a little responsible for the actions of their nation and government and they must take responsibility for their own actions and postively act to stop actions they believe are immoral or illegal.

In the context of this debate I believe that if Molders is to be held up as an example for others its important not just that he be a great pilot or a great fighter, but that he be a moral person too and someone worthy of emulation in every respect.

As to the idiotic attempt to equate a Nazi pilot with an Allied pilot. Molders is not the moral equivalent of Douglas Bader. Douglas Bader didn't fight for and contribute to the war effort of an evil regime whereas Molders did. Too bad for Molders I know, but he should have been more carefull who he associated with.

flyingscampi
03-25-2005, 12:53 PM
Yep we good guys that won the war against facism have set a great example of how we stop our leaders invading or bombing other countries without good reason.

PraetorHonoris
03-25-2005, 01:03 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Ploughman:
Too bad for Molders I know, but he should have been more carefull who he associated with. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

It is always easy to jugde from the present, isn't it?

You should inform yourself a bit about M√¬∂lders.
He acted against Hitler in his last days, when he realised, what the nazis were doing with the church... (some people think, he was assinated).

Fliegeroffizier
03-25-2005, 01:04 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by flyingscampi:
Yep we good guys that won the war against facism have set a great example of how we stop our leaders invading or bombing other countries without good reason. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Here we go again...it was only a matter of time..

Mods!!!!! Time to lock this one.

Gog..
03-25-2005, 01:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Ploughman:

As to the idiotic attempt to equate a Nazi pilot with an Allied pilot. Molders is not the moral equivalent of Douglas Bader. Douglas Bader didn't fight for and contribute to the war effort of an evil regime whereas Molders did. Too bad for Molders I know, but he should have been more carefull who he associated with. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

A very rude and poor choice of words Ploughman. If the Nazi's had won do you think they would have thought the same about our pilots as we did/do? Of course not, that is why I offered him up as an example.

As for the rest of your comment, what choice do you think a lot of these people had? Only an idiot thinks that they could have just refused to play in Hitlers war and stay home with the wife and kids, this would have got them sent to a camp for some serious thinking or worse.
Early in the war, most Germans thought they were doing the right thing and the war was a just and proper exercise. When the full extent of the catastrophe that they were now involved in became apparent, it was way too late to opt out of it and be a'consciencous objector! The penalty for not doing what the party wanted was imprisonment or death for you and the ones you loved.
Do some research on those that were brave enough to try and overthrow Hitler. It was no easy task to topple that regime and I don't blame them for not trying, especially after Stauffenbergs attempt.

Aero_Shodanjo
03-25-2005, 01:47 PM
Sorry for this OT, but Ive just watched a German movie titled "Goodbye Lenin". Has anyone seen it?

In short it's about an East Berlin family life just before and after the German reunification in 1989. In that movie the mother (a proudly socialist one - I quoted this from the DVD case itself) fell into a coma and awaken 8 months later after the reunification.

I wont write a complete resume of the movie but , honestly, Ive been thinking about the effect of WWII for the German people - to see their country divided by the superpowers for so long.

Some people might argue that it was simply the - sorry for the expression here - price they have to pay, but I see it as a fact that people too often bear the burden of their government mistakes. Common people, just like everyone here and everywhere.

Im not trying to be a wise guy here, I appologize if it seems and sounds that way. But, while the focus of this thread is about WWII, I would like to state my opinion that every country have their own "dark pages" in their history. Pages that often overlooked when judging other country's mistakes.

So why dont we just look at our own mistakes instead of judging others?

Once again, sorry for this OT.

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 02:02 PM
I think "Goodbye Lenin" was aired recently on Sundance, where I caught it about a month ago. Very good movie that really begs the question, what does happiness mean? And in the case of the E. German family, I'd say it was family and friends, and the excitement of something new. Those days have long since passed us by.

I really hoped and wished this thread would remain friendly, because the topic is important to us all. I think if anyone wants to look at the other side of the issue, i.e., Allied conduct during WW2, a good place to start would be with a documentary called the Fog of War.

I dont believe that governments are the best representaion of their people.

Capt._Tenneal
03-25-2005, 02:08 PM
Isn't "Fog of War" the one with McNamara ? Then it should be about Vietnam, right ? I haven't seen it before, hence my question.

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 03:17 PM
During WW2,as an USAAF officer, he worked with Curtis LeMay to help formulate the best ways in which to most effectively destroy Japan. Very interesting stuff how targets were picked and BDA evaluated. He said for his role in it all, he was certain he'd have been hung if the Allies had lost.

ploughman
03-25-2005, 03:56 PM
Quite rightly too, the bombing of Japan in 44-45 was purest murder. It's fascinating seeing McNamara talking about it, Japan was utterly devastated long before the A-Bombs were dropped. Watching the Fog of War it becomes clear how helpless the Japanese were against the strategic bombing campaign launched against them by LeMay's B-29s.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> A very rude and poor choice of words Ploughman. If the Nazi's had won do you think they would have thought the same about our pilots as we did/do? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Not poor choice of words mate, and if it's rude, well I'm sure if DB was alive he'd be round your house kicking your door in with his tin legs and having you explain yourself. As to if the Nazis had won, the last thing we'd've had to worry about would have been what they'd've done with our pilots. Think about that. Luckily they didn't and our friends on the continent get to reassess their history at their leisure in a free and democratic land,as is their right. Don't get me wrong, being a Brit our past weighs hevily on us too, and I'm aware of the crimes of my ancestors against humanity at large, but to be a modern German must be very hard with that past looming so closely. I can be proud of my now deceased grandparents and their generation and the war they fought in. For a German it must be very hard to look at someone loved who fought in WWII and not to think of them as anything else other than victims of history and circumstance.

When I was at University I did a course on Nazi Germany, one story particularily struck me. In 1942 or 1943 (I can't remember when exactly) in Berlin mixed marriage Jewish males were rounded up for deportation. The next day their ethnically German wives ganged together and went down to Gestapo HQ in central Berlin and demonstrated openly against their husbands incarceration. The result? Their husbands were released. Why? To stop the public demonstration. Today, when this sort of thing brings down a government we call it a Velvet Revolution, one happened the other day in Kyrgystan. The Emperor is shown to have no clothes, the game is over and everyone's on the next Ju-52 to Switzerland. If only more Germans had had the courage of those women...maybe Molders did, I don't know, I'm sure he was a good bloke, but can you think of a side/ideology/movement/regime that he should have associated with less than the one he did?

Griffon_25th
03-25-2005, 04:45 PM
how is this "personal computer" madness?

Zyzbot
03-25-2005, 05:08 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Griffon_25th:
how is this "personal computer" madness? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


In this case PC stands for "Political Correctness".

GR142_Astro
03-25-2005, 05:33 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by EyeoftheChicken:
Great debate about this topic, and its interesting to hear from both sides of the aisle regarding it. Look, the Enola Gay is one of the most visible artifacts from World War 2. Many debate that it saved American lives by shortening the war (and many other issues involving the USSR). Then some would say its not so sporting dropping an A -Bomb on a clearly civilian target because its effects could be better measured. What it all comes down to is "to the victor goes the spoils". And if you're Japanese or German nationals, this is the price you pay for your government's policies generations ago. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

And some ****** dropped a jar of red paint onto Enola Gay from the observation bridge, not long after it went on display.It's just an artifact for goodness sakes.

I've always thought the PC stuff was idiotic, including the fact that any model kits or replicas of German aircraft imported into that part of the world are required to have the swastikas removed from the decal sheet. Pretty minor I thought at the time they started that, but look what it leads to.

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

horseback
03-25-2005, 06:24 PM
I think the issue is not that the government of Germany is being politically correct, but that they are forcing their political views upon the German Air Force. In a free society, political views cannot be subject to 'correction'.

A soldier like Molders should be judged on the merits of his military service to his country, his courage, his feats of arms, his tactical genius, his leadership in the fires of combat, and his strategic vision. In this regard, Molders was at least the equal, and most probably the superior, of most of the legendary RAF and USAAF leaders of his time that we honor so deservedly today.

His only 'crime' was in his choice of homeland. Had he been born in Kent and served served the Empire instead of Germany, I'm sure Great Britain would be studded with memorials to him. Had he been born in Wisconsin, they'd have named a chesse after him.

His service was to his country, not to the Nazi regime that limited the information available to the public, pioneered the art of modern propaganda, and literally seduced the German people into a war of conquest.

And let's be clear here; until WWII, conquest was considered a perfectly legitimate avenue for nation-states to be "great." Even in Europe, national borders expanded and contracted as the balance of power shifted between countries throughout history. I don't see British explorer-conquerors being shamed in this way, any more than I see the people who 'settled' the American West being publicly reviled for doing what came naturally.

In a system where the military is subordinate to the civilian leadership, as Molders was, making public political judgements is a criminal act. I was in the US Navy in the late 70s when Jimmy Carter was president of the United States. I disagreed with almost every pronouncement and policy of his administration, but I held my tongue and did my duty, along with hundreds of thousands of other American service members at the time.

Jimmy was no Hitler, but I live in a comparatively open (and much more skeptical) society, and the news about his political and diplomatic ...um, decisions was available to the public. Much of the worst of the Nazi excesses were not known to the German public at the time, and what did get out was attributed to enemy propaganda. There is no indication that Molders had any knowlege of those excesses.

The attempt to politically correct the GAF and JG 74 will not reflect well upon the current political leadership, and the public insult to a great soldier's memory will eventually be corrected.

cheers

horseback

flyingscampi
03-25-2005, 06:52 PM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 07:59 PM
anyway, the new Queens of the Stone Age is an absolute masterpiece!

ImpStarDuece
03-25-2005, 08:34 PM
Bloody heck, there is a new QUOTSA album out. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif Details man, I need details!

EyeoftheChicken
03-25-2005, 09:48 PM
details:heavier, druggier, and way more satanic

DmdSeeker
04-02-2005, 07:14 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by horseback:
His only 'crime' was in his choice of homeland.
cheers

horseback <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I believe you're forgetting his oath of personal loyalty to Hitler.

Revisionism abounds.

Viking-S
04-02-2005, 08:05 AM
Almost all personnel that are or have been in any country‚‚ā¨ôs armed force have sworn loyalty to ruler and flag. The lesson here is that this never frees him or her from personal responsibility when the days of reckoning arrive.

In my view the Germans are just upholding their law and the military should do the job they are hired to do and leave the politics and law making to the politicians.

malkuth
04-02-2005, 11:09 AM
Funny how Germany in there attempt to Forget History, and not let it happen again.. Are falling right back into the same problems of those times.

The saying, If you forget history, you are cursed to Repeat it never seems to considered. Even though its about the most truthfuth statement anyone could say.

Jirozaemon
04-02-2005, 12:13 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Viking-S:
Almost all personnel that are or have been in any country‚‚ā¨ôs armed force have sworn loyalty to ruler and flag. The lesson here is that this never frees him or her from personal responsibility when the days of reckoning arrive.

In my view the Germans are just upholding their law and the military should do the job they are hired to do and leave the politics and law making to the politicians. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I could not agree more... very nice and balanced post !!!

Regards

Jiro

Ruy Horta
04-02-2005, 01:21 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by malkuth:
Funny how Germany in there attempt to Forget History, and not let it happen again.. Are falling right back into the same problems of those times. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

This has nothing to do with forgetting history!

That is complete nonsense.

Would you consider calling a USN ship USS Robert E. Lee Thomas J. Jackson or even George Armstrong Custer?

Although I could find people who would support these names, the majority would consider them unsuited for a military vessel or unit.

If Germany named units after WW2 "heroes" they'd be accused of failing to learn those same lessons, to some extend by the same people.

Accept the fact that the democratcally elected goverment of Germany has passed this law.

And I am far from politically correct, since I would name those ships Bismarck, L√ľtzow, Tirpiz, Gro√üer Kurfurst, Goeben.

I would call my squadrons Udet, Molders, Rudel, Hartmann.

Ah, and all those Field marshals and battles that can be used for the army, not to forget those tradional names like Großdeutschland.

No, I am not PC, but lets not kid ourselves.

(USS Robert E. Lee, Thomas J. Jackson, George Armstrong Custer, USS Gettysburg, USS Crazy Horse - now that would be a killer http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif )

Zyzbot
04-02-2005, 02:58 PM
There already is a USS Gettysburg. CG-64

http://www.gettysburg.navy.mil/


And the WAS a USS Robert E Lee SSBN-601

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Robert_E._Lee_(SSBN-601)

Ruy Horta
04-02-2005, 03:41 PM
There may be units with those names, but just ask an Afro-American if he's happy with the name Robert E. Lee, or a southerner if he's happy with Gettysburg as a remembered victory?

Point is that these names are not acceptable to everyone and as such do not serve well to represent "the people".

It does not matter if Robert E. Lee was a great soldier or a man of honor.

After 1945 we had a lane called Stalin (Stalinlaan), which was situated in a neighborhood with streets baring similar names (Churchill, Roosevelt, Victorie, Vrijheid). Later the Stalinlaan was renamed Pres. Kennedylaan...

Need I explain more?

Now what are the chances of another USS Robert E. Lee?

EDIT: Now I actually had the feeling that some of these names would actually be/or have been in use, especially the two you mentioned.

Latico
04-02-2005, 04:06 PM
I would like to suggest a good read in regards to how the Nazis came to power.

Rise of Adolph HItler (http://www.historyplace.com/worldwar2/riseofhitler/index.htm)

The Nazis were a political party. Not all Germans supported this party, many loathed it. But when Hitler became "the Fuhrer", He proclaimed the Nazi Party as the only "Legal" political party allowed in Germany. He also proclaimed that any utterance against the Nazis or himself would be concidered an act of treason, punishable by death.

Hitler knew that there might be descent within the rainks of Germany's new regular Weirmachen. That is why he organized the SS, which was mostly recruited from the "Hitlers Youth Movement" that was brainwashed into believing that brutality was a MUST to maintain the "proper" loyalty to the Reich.

I do not blame the Germans of today for what happened prior to and during WWII. Can't say as I blame all of those that were present during that time, either. What ever issues I may have with the German Government, or it's people of today, are based on current events.

DangerForward
04-02-2005, 04:08 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Ruy Horta:
There may be units with those names, but just ask an Afro-American if he's happy with the name Robert E. Lee, or a southerner if he's happy with Gettysburg as a remembered victory?

Point is that these names are not acceptable to everyone and as such do not serve well to represent "the people".

It does not matter if Robert E. Lee was a great soldier or a man of honor.

After 1945 we had a lane called Stalin (Stalinlaan), which was situated in a neighborhood with streets baring similar names (Churchill, Roosevelt, Victorie, Vrijheid). Later the Stalinlaan was renamed Pres. Kennedylaan...

Need I explain more?

Now what are the chances of another USS Robert E. Lee?

EDIT: Now I actually had the feeling that some of these names would actually be/or have been in use, especially the two you mentioned. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I live in Virginia in the US and Lee's name is everywhere. There's Leesburg Pike, Lee Highway, Washington and Lee High School. I can also think of a road named after Mosby, who was considered not much more than a bandit in the North. I think part of the North and South of the US getting back together was respecting the soldiers on both sides. I'm sure though that this offends many on both sides still fighting our Civil war internally.

horseback
04-02-2005, 04:49 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Now what are the chances of another USS Robert E. Lee? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Actually pretty good. Lee was deeply respected throughout the country on both sides and his post war behavior was as exemplary as the rest of his life. He was an advocate of his home State's (Virginia) right to secede from the Union, not of slavery. He was Lincoln's first choice for command of the Army of the Potomac, and had he accepted, it is quite likely that he would eventually have been become one of our greater presidents. He is remembered as a great general and a great man who followed his conscience.

Historians tend to obscure this fact sometimes, but the War Between the States (or as my maternal grandmother used to call it, "the Late Unpleasantness") was far more about preserving the Union than about ending slavery. During the first half of the 19th century, several Northeastern states also toyed with the idea of secession, when agricultural interests in the south and midwest conflicted with their industrial ambitions. Had the right to secession been granted or won, this country would have Balkanized into several petty states, probably to be eventually gobbled up by the European powers.

Gettysburg is remembered as a national tragedy instead of a Northern victory these days. All of the casualties were American, after all. Rather than seeing ourselves as the citizens of this or that State, most of us see ourselves as Americans these days. I seem to recall that Germany and Italy (among others) had similar pains before unifying...

Jackson may have had a ship named for him, or may still get one; he is held similar to Lee in many regards. Custer was, well, let's just say that he would have been a minor historical character if he hadn't gone out with such a loud bang...

Ruy, you're generally a pretty perceptive guy, but I'm afraid you've shown a tin ear on this one.

cheers

horseback

Ruy Horta
04-03-2005, 04:22 AM
Horseback,

I know that both Robert E. Lee and Gettysburg would strike a sore spot and be the weak links in my argument. But they are also two good examples.

Molders = Lee

Some would see Robert E. Lee as respectable (I personally do, and I do agree (as if that matters) that the US Civil War was mainly about keeping the Union together and establishing the ascendency of the Industrial North over the south and freeing its captive labor capacity.

There are plenty of heroes from the Civil War that lend their names to wartime and even some post war units and equipment, but lets not forget that a lot has changed in the US since 1945 - for instance the Army was still segregated in the war.

Now does a black American look at Robert E. Lee in a similar manner as a white American does?

Since one can ask the question, it is already part of the answer. Like I originally wrote, it doesn't matter if Robert E. Lee was a respectable man and soldier, he fought for the Confederacy and that makes him guilty by association for more than just a few people.

The Gettysburg is probably not names after a national tragedy, but simply honoring the city as most US cruisers have been traditionally (BB = states and now SSBNs).

But I did make a thinking error when I used that example. However I do think that apart from that you understand what I tried to convey, albeit not well prepared: one tends to avoid names that might strike a painful nerve.

Serves me right for choosing (without any though or reserach) a number of poor examples to try and explain my point of view.

First I much more comfortable with WW2 than the US Civil War and second I have given little attention to most modern fighting vessels of the USN, not a good combination when trying to create an analogy.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

Touché Horseback!

PS. What is a tin ear?

PPS. I disagree strongly with the assertion that a splintered America, or even one that was simply split would have been gobbled up by european powers. But that is a different discussion and one that would be purpely hypothetical.

Gr7_Bizu-RO
04-03-2005, 10:27 PM
enough Ruy..you embarassed yourself enough for not doing your homework before posting . So ,your point is that Molders,Robert E.
Lee,and other names should not be used if they touch a nerve.
I can think that names like A.Lincon or G.Wahington may strike someones
nerve for god knows what reason aswell. What then? Dont use them? Ridiculous.I dont know much about Molders but you guys didnt read the original posting well. Fighter Squadron 74 was stripped of the traditional name Werner M√¬∂lders because he was a volunteer in Condor Legion during Spanish war, not for his WW2 career.That,s the german law passed in 1998
and enforced now.Cant blame someone for that.That is the law!!!!!
We all have to obey ******ed laws every day.If the germans decide that is a bad one,they can lobby,challenge,take it to court..and have it changed. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Schlagloch
04-04-2005, 03:25 AM
Most germans don't care. I haven't noticed this going through the press here. At least not on the front pages of the newspapers. And even if it did, I believe the germans would be indifferent.

What concerns me is that such laws are completely detached from the interest of the population. The government is doing it's thing, the people are doing theirs, and most of the time they don't care very much about what each other is doing. Of course the people get angry when taxes get raised or the social system gets cut down, but then they adapt and go about their business. Often enough they adapt in a way that counters the intentions of the government when they passed the legislation. Generally politicians are despised, independent of which party they belong to.

The german population has become mostly apolitical. They don't care about their country very much. Part of that comes from recent german history. Germany is not a country to be proud of because of what it did under the nazis. You will find very few "patriotic" people in Germany, and patriotism in other countries is generally regarded with suspicion.

This situation leaves a vacuum to be filled. And it is getting filled by parties which preach hatred against foreigners and generally proclaiming to have simple solutions to today's complex problems.

The result is actually fascinating to watch. In some of Germany's eastern federal states those parties already have scored spectacular wins in recent elections. At the same time the politically correct rest of the country screams "How could they do that!" So if a foreigner misbehaves (they sometimes do that, just like the germans), the police often won't do anything because they will immediately be accused of being biased against foreigners. This results in examples for the right wing parties to point at and in a general real resentment against foreigners. And so you have a good chance of extremist parties scoring better and better in the next elections.

That's the real danger in that kind of laws. When the population gets alienated from their government, they become gullible for extremist propaganda, just like before 1933. And this time it might not be Germany alone, this might spread into other countries in the EU as well.

HotelBushranger
04-04-2005, 05:52 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Most germans don't care. I haven't noticed this going through the press here. At least not on the front pages of the newspapers. And even if it did, I believe the germans would be indifferent.

What concerns me is that such laws are completely detached from the interest of the population. The government is doing it's thing, the people are doing theirs, and most of the time they don't care very much about what each other is doing. Of course the people get angry when taxes get raised or the social system gets cut down, but then they adapt and go about their business. Often enough they adapt in a way that counters the intentions of the government when they passed the legislation. Generally politicians are despised, independent of which party they belong to.

The german population has become mostly apolitical. They don't care about their country very much. Part of that comes from recent german history. Germany is not a country to be proud of because of what it did under the nazis. You will find very few "patriotic" people in Germany, and patriotism in other countries is generally regarded with suspicion.

This situation leaves a vacuum to be filled. And it is getting filled by parties which preach hatred against foreigners and generally proclaiming to have simple solutions to today's complex problems.

The result is actually fascinating to watch. In some of Germany's eastern federal states those parties already have scored spectacular wins in recent elections. At the same time the politically correct rest of the country screams "How could they do that!" So if a foreigner misbehaves (they sometimes do that, just like the germans), the police often won't do anything because they will immediately be accused of being biased against foreigners. This results in examples for the right wing parties to point at and in a general real resentment against foreigners. And so you have a good chance of extremist parties scoring better and better in the next elections.

That's the real danger in that kind of laws. When the population gets alienated from their government, they become gullible for extremist propaganda, just like before 1933. And this time it might not be Germany alone, this might spread into other countries in the EU as well. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

Thats scary!

Appears history is once again repeating itself

In my opinion, Germans are some of the nicest and most hospitable people on this planet. This whole debacle is just the government trying to appease other countries, whilst not caring about their own, the first no-no for politicians. This is really sickening, trying to clean their hands of history. Yes, the Nazi's were some of the dispicable people who did the worst things. However, I do not believe every single German citizen and soldier had the same state of mind as Hitler. In the 30's the German populace were manipulated and controlled on the beliefs of a madman, him being backed up by the Great Depression. And, after some dirty handling, got into office and changed everything. Does that really seem to you like something that would normally happen? Luckily, bl00dy luckily this thing does happens only VERY lucky, if any at all these days.

The German citizens didn't even know what was happening, in 45 when they were shown the results of the Holocaust, they cried 'We didn't know!" Honestly, who could support such a regime if they knew what was happening?

And its not as if the German armed forces had any decision-they are controlled by the current government, and have to do what they are told. And in that brutal time, any act of rebeliousness by any soldier was punished usually, fataly. How could you expect the Germans not to do what they were told. A definitive bullet in the back by your own people, or risking a bullet in the chest by enemies, enemies they would have to eliminate to prevent that bullet. But, you always get people that risk it, and unfortunately end up dead. In one instance, a high ranking German officer refused to kill a group of Jewish childen;he was killed and promptly replaced with a less back-boned officer.

These men were acting out of a pure instinct for survival, and can hardly be blamed for what the SS did. Now those blokes were real hardcore bastards, THEY are the ones that should be hung by their nether regions!

But, instead of erasing the Holocaust from history, the Germans should be EDUCATING everyone on this!

See, in that terrible time, there needed to be men like Molders, who were non-Nazi, which is important, role models, to continue old tradiations of respect, dignity etc.

Also, Allied leaders SHOULD be taken into account for what THEY did as well. I've got an extreme personal grudge against Generals Blamey and MacArthur, the bastards

My two cents

Ruy Horta
04-04-2005, 07:28 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Gr7_Bizu-RO:
enough Ruy..you embarassed yourself enough for not doing your homework before posting .

That,s the german law passed in 1998
and enforced now.Cant blame someone for that.That is the law <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I suggest you look at my first post before the whole issue of my poor analog became the main issue. Especially the bit on democracy...

csThor
04-04-2005, 07:43 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by HotelBushranger:
But, instead of erasing the Holocaust from history, the Germans should be EDUCATING everyone on this! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The government and the media do not delete the Holocaust from history, but they reduce history to the holocaust. In fact the school books contain hardly more than the Holocaust when you're looking for 1933-45, the TV "documentaries" (an euphemism in my opinion) hardly deal with the real military actions from 1939-45 (few people would know about Kursk for example) and other articles in media are generally made without any research to back up claims but mostly spit prejudices or myths which are easier to publish than real facts.

You should have seen a TV spot that preceded the whole affair - journalism of lowest rate, simply false statements ... the list was endless. Even a former "chairman" of the Department of Research of military history criticized the decision as well as the reasons behind it.

avimimus
04-04-2005, 08:13 AM
You don't have to drop the bombs to be responsible. But then again millions of Germans were responsible for both world war two and the holocaust. Then again, if fascism had risen here my grandmother would have been for killing Jews.

The important thing here is to be clear that a nation should not celebrate those responsible for such terrible acts. Especially, a nation that still had not had enough time to gradually recover and learn from what happened and which still has those in its population which sympathize with the old cause.

By the same token it would only be right to take down all monuments to a lot of American heroes (eg. Custer) and to ban from public exposition films idolizing them.

After all its only been a hundred and fifty years since the campaign of ethnic cleansing and often genocide, the "opening of the west" took place and thirty years since westerns rewriting history to support it were still being made.

So the whole bloody issue is complicated.

norman888
04-04-2005, 08:13 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Schlagloch:
The german population has become mostly apolitical. They don't care about their country very much. Part of that comes from recent german history.

This situation leaves a vacuum to be filled. And it is getting filled by parties which preach hatred against foreigners and generally proclaiming to have simple solutions to today's complex problems.

And this time it might not be Germany alone, this might spread into other countries in the EU as well. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yes if this is true, is VERY scary. All sounds very familiar to me.

But I would hope citizens would live up to their responsibilities as citizens and not just blame their government-people ARE the government.

Europeans have always had this attitude of "Balance of Power." With the Soviet Union gone, who else do they have to balance against, but the USA?

And finally to any of you "Allied Bashers" please remember who started these "total" Wars and who set the precedent for how they were fought. Dropping an atom bomb(s), while a dreadful thing, probably saved Allied AND Japanese casualties. The Japanese were projected in the millions and Allied in the 100's of thousands.

JG53Frankyboy
04-04-2005, 08:30 AM
well, the actual political leadership made the decission that traditonalunit names are not to take from german soldiers that fought in the spanish civil war/ WW2 . you can like it ore not, it is so........

the only way a WW2 soldier are allowed are
1. taking part on the germam resistance against Hitler - as an example Stauffenberg
2. after WW2 taking part at the rebuild of the german armed forces - like Steinhoff

the actual Luftwaffe Wings with traditonal names are:
JABOG31 Boelcke
AG51 Immelmann
JG71 Richthofen
JG73 Steinhoff

so, Hartmann would be possible http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif , Marseille sure not . but i doubt JG74 will get a new name.

norman888
04-04-2005, 08:42 AM
I wonder what would the reaction be to the No. 617 "Harris" or 366th "LeMay" squadrons!?

csThor
04-04-2005, 09:12 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by norman888:
But I would hope citizens would live up to their responsibilities as citizens and not just blame their government-people ARE the government. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The problem is that the german political system has not changed much for the last twenty years. Politicians are recruited from within a "political caste" which consists mostly of bland, uniform Yay-Sayers (or even more drastical: slimy *** crawlers without own opinion). True characters as Konrad Adenauer or Willy Brandt just don't exist anymore and so people cannot find leading figures to relate to. Our "political leadership" is as interesting as a broken piece of concrete in a ruin in Hintertupfingen.
Along with this lack of identification figures the "political caste" is doing uniform politics and differences of past times (which really enabled the voter to select the party which suited him best) are gone. All we have today is the choice between Dark Grey, Light Grey, a different Grey and another different Grey. And if someone really looks at the "work" done by the parliament he gets put off by the never-ending bickering, the political games, the tactical delays just to gain power ... even if the situation is bleak. That's what puts people off - "They [up there] are doing their stuff anyway so why bother?"

Capt._Tenneal
04-04-2005, 09:38 AM
"Stonewall" Jackson did have a ship named for him too :

http://www.subnet.com/fleet/ssbn634.htm http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

As for JG74, Galland's name is still up for grabs. He was a General of Fighters too like Molders, but he survived the war, and maybe was able to take part in the post-war Luftwaffe (maybe someone can clarify this) ?

And a question for our German friends : is anything in the Bundeswehr named for Rommel ? He was identified with the resistance during the 1944 bomb attempt by Stauffenberg, and was respected by his opponents, so I'm curious of his status in current German military history.

Viking-S
04-04-2005, 10:10 AM
Don‚‚ā¨ôt get your wars in a mix here! This is all about the volunteers serving in the Spanish Civil War on the fascist side and has nothing at all to do with WW2.
From the original post;

‚‚ā¨ŇďDespite being treated as a hero by the Nazi propaganda machine, Colonel M√¬∂lders was regarded as a suitable model for young West German soldiers after the war and his name ‚‚ā¨"Ě along with that of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel ‚‚ā¨"Ě was attached to navy destroyers, an airbase in Neuburg and an army barracks in Lower Saxony.

Now Peter Struck, the Defence Minister, is to enforce a 1998 law that bans any honour being bestowed on the German volunteers who served in the Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War, including Colonel M√¬∂lders. German pilots, wearing the uniform of the Spanish Fascists, bombed the Basque city of Guernica, killing thousands.‚‚ā¨¬Ě

So Rommel should be clear.AFAIK.

JG53Frankyboy
04-04-2005, 10:20 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Capt._Tenneal:
"Stonewall" Jackson did have a ship named for him too :

http://www.subnet.com/fleet/ssbn634.htm http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

As for JG74, Galland's name is still up for grabs. He was a General of Fighters too like Molders, but he survived the war, and maybe was able to take part in the post-war Luftwaffe (maybe someone can clarify this) ?

And a question for our German friends : is anything in the Bundeswehr named for Rommel ? He was identified with the resistance during the 1944 bomb attempt by Stauffenberg, and was respected by his opponents, so I'm curious of his status in current German military history. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Rommel looks like to fit the rules , there is still an army barracks in gemany named after him.

Galland never served in the BundesLuftwaffe after WW2- so he is not suitable for traditional names.

horseback
04-04-2005, 06:34 PM
The 1998 law is silly in this specific case. Molders squadron name could easily have been 'overlooked' or as we Americans sometimes do, 'grandfathered' (taking a long existing or accepted situation to be exempt) into the law.

Instead, some grandstanding boob of a politician is apparently trying to score points by smearing a good man.

Ruy-

Sorry I took so long to get back to you.

Great (meaning 'of consequence' rather than 'wonderful') men like Lee have to be taken in the context of their times. For example, having Charlemagne ruling France today would not be as desirable as it was 1100 years or so ago. There is today a movement bent on revising the reputations of good and honorable men of the past because their behavior doesn't pass muster according to current standards.

This is hardly because we are all so morally upright today, but because the intellectual pipsqueaks who are attempting to smear them have no other means to draw attention to themselves and thereby advance their own political or scholastic careers.

Some people are offended because of their own ignorance; there was a recent case of a Washington DC city employee being fired for using the word '*****rdly' (an old English word meaning miserly, cheap or petty) in a city document because it offended certain members of the city council who lacked the vocabulary to know the word outright or apparently, the intelligence to comprehend its meaning from its context.

On the other hand, they might have been cynically using the opportunity to generate some fake outrage in order to divert the community they 'represent' from the fact that they weren't doing their jobs very well...

To allow such a thing is to invite more of the same. You can only take sensitivity so far before the inmates are running the asylum. That is to say, you can't permit the the easily offended minority to run the affairs for a the whole community.

A 'tin ear' refers to the tendency not to quite hear the whole sentence, and misconstrue the meaning, as someone hard of hearing might. In the old days, these people used a metal instrument held to the ear that looked like a horn. This was sometimes referred to as 'having a tin ear.'

cheers

horseback

Aztek_Eagle
04-04-2005, 07:34 PM
this is the kind of reasons why i hate politicians theys shuld kill them selves

Gr7_Bizu-RO
04-04-2005, 08:28 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by horseback:
The 1998 law is silly in this specific case. Molders squadron name could easily have been 'overlooked' or as we Americans sometimes do, 'grandfathered' (taking a long existing or accepted situation to be exempt) into the law.

You can only take sensitivity so far before the inmates are running the asylum. That is to say, you can't permit the the easily offended minority to run the affairs for a the whole community.


horseback <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

couldnt agree more!!! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif
That should end this great topic,right?

plumps_
04-04-2005, 08:38 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by horseback:
The 1998 law is silly in this specific case. Molders squadron name could easily have been 'overlooked' or as we Americans sometimes do, 'grandfathered' (taking a long existing or accepted situation to be exempt) into the law.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
It had actually been 'overlooked' for six or seven years until suddenly some journalist who somehow had to fill a few minutes of a regular TV program did a very one-sided and emotional report about M√¬∂lders that put the defence secretary under public pressure.

Schlagloch
04-05-2005, 02:38 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Originally posted by norman888:
But I would hope citizens would live up to their responsibilities as citizens and not just blame their government-people ARE the government. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well, you only get to elect a new government every 4 years. In between the people have almost no legal means of influencing the government. Yes, they could join a party and try to work their way up into the political establishment. But usually they'd rather get on with their lives.

When the 4 year cycle is over, they basically get to choose between four established parties that have trouble distinguishing themselves from each other. Like csThor said, you get to choose between some shades of gray. If you vote for one of the smaller parties you might as well drop your vote in the trashcan because of the 5% cutoff rule.

But occasionally the established parties become so unpopular that the exstremist parties get their chance. So far this mostly happens at the local or state level. It hasn't happend on the federal level yet. All parties, established or exstremist, currently lack a charismatic leader. The first one to get such a leader has a good chance at taking over the government.

That said, this isn't a purely german problem. What happened in nazi Germany could have happened in almost any other country as well (and it has happened afterwards and will happen in our time again). Maybe they would have picked another target, but in many european countries historically there have been antisemitic sentiments, so they make a good scapegoat. Maybe they wouldn't have gone about prosecuting their scapegoat as efficiently and as ruthlessly as the Nazis did, but I wouldn't even be sure about that. The idea of the concentration camp is not a german invention, they just developped it further than anyone had done before. And the allied bombings of german cities and dropping the A-bomb on Japan were pretty efficient and ruthless in their own way as well.

The Nazis perfected the means of political propaganda. The same means they used are still used today and the masses still react to them the same way they did then. It worked in the McCarthy era in the US (bad bad communists). It works today as the Bush administration identifies new evil countries that they want to "free". At the same time those upholders of freedom and justice keep people prisoner in Guantanamo Bay without even giving them a chance to defend themselves before a court. Not to mention what some soldiers did in that prison in Iraq.

So this can happen anywhere. Civilization is just a thin veil under which we hide our natural desires in order to make living together a possibility. But as soon as they get a chance to get away with it, people will start doing all those ugly things again. Don't like your neighbour? Just call the Inquisition/Gestapo/Stasi/McCarty Commission/Homeland Security Office... and get him into all kinds of nasty problems. You saw a car pick up your neighbour in the middle of the night and he hasn't been seen again since then? Better not wonder loudly where he is, you don't want to join him there. They found a mass grave with your neighbour's body in it? Oh, you never knew anything. You didn't kill him, did you?

And now that we live in a world with the states distrusting their people, denouncing others will come into fashion again.

History is repeating itself. Again.

Viking-S
04-05-2005, 03:08 AM
‚‚ā¨¬ĚHistory is repeating itself. Again.‚‚ā¨¬Ě

No it isn‚‚ā¨ôt! Not everywhere.

By writing laws like the one we are discussing here the German government gives a clear message to the citizens and the world that they have learned the lesson.

Trent001
04-05-2005, 03:38 AM
As an Australian who lost ancestors fighting in World War 2, I can say I'm disgusted by a decision that appears to be reactionary and un-founded. We're not talking about a man who is accused of ordering civilians to the gas chamber or other atrocities. We're talking about a fighter pilot probably looking for operational experience in combat rather then trying to make a profound political statement, when he volunteered to go to Spain. If there is no evidence the man was a sworn, died-in-the-wool Nazi executioner, I see no reason in recognising his war exploits. This is like calling all German service personnel from World War 2 "Nazis" and painting them with the same brush. Give the man credit where credits due... He was an accomplished fighter pilot... I think the current German Government is wrong. Sure, be ashamed (if you want to) about the Nazi regime, but be proud of the men and women who risked it all for their country...

Franzonto
04-05-2005, 03:56 AM
Oh, that discussion is going on rather well. You guys express yourself better than what I'm used to from other forums.

In any case, Schlagloch and others said it very well: The politicial system is flawed and encourages the election of extremist parties. It's also a good reason to not rule out civil disobediance, if the goverment should feel too mighty and distances itself too much from the people.

One should also consider, that real changes usually don't happen by changing one system, but by having one extreme, then jumping to the opposite extreme, and the next system (the third so-to-say) will be in between, hence the best.

It seems Germany needs something more fundamental than just switching between the two leading parties to become more democratic and satisfied.

I was never interested in Nazis you know.. until my teacher gave me a warning for playing around with a friend of mine by drawing swastikas in each others schoolbooks to annoy each other (I am half mexican, my friend was half italian)... so we get suspected of being nazis, in spite of us being practically foreigners..

Ever since then I think, I noted more and more how Nazis and anything that comes near them are the only thing that is indifferentially prosecuted here. I almost couldn't believe as a child that there is a symbol I was not allowed to show publically.. I see my country as one of the freeest in the world, but this anti-rightism movement opposes this a lot.

By now I feel like all parties are begging me to vote for the NPD (the Nazi Party), and every day I get new reasons to do that.
Nazi-clothes, symbols and even brands get outlawed, but the extremes of the other direction don't.
Recently I heard somebody screaming "death to the Nazis, fu***** Nazis, just die" and such things.. nobody said and probably nobody thought anything... if it was the other way round, somebody would've called the police or jumped right at them, even though such leftist extremists injure just as many people, not to mention that their usually pacifist world view is poison to the world, just as exaggerated violence is.

Finally, back to the point:
If one of the extremist parties only just got themselves a good leader I'd not have to have so many doubts anymore.. for currently at least the NPD seems like a bunch of idiots to me that don't even understand Hitler's deep philosophy very well. (Don't forget, philosophy and deeds are two pairs of shoes)

JG53Frankyboy
04-05-2005, 04:20 AM
as an half mexican i doubt you would vote for a Nazi party that is following Hilters "philosophy" ! you would counted as an "under-human" i assume.
you should try to read "Mein Kampf" !
this man was the real evil !

NO political "philosophie" of the last 100years had such inhuman theories like the NAzi one, even the communist/stalinist one not !

so, its quit necesarry to fight all Nazi growing movements as soon they appear !

Schlagloch
04-05-2005, 05:27 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Originally posted by Viking-S:
No it isn‚‚ā¨ôt! Not everywhere.

By writing laws like the one we are discussing here the German government gives a clear message to the citizens and the world that they have learned the lesson. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yes, but the people are not behind it. Probably they would be okay with that law if they were interested. But they aren't. That law doesn't concern most of them, so they don't care.

What they care about is the effect of laws that touch them directly. Everything else that goes on in parliament goes mainly unnoticed by the broad public. Sometimes the media bring something to the attention of the people and there is a public outcry. But often the feeling is that the government spends it's time with totally irrelevant topics that do nothing to improve the situation of the general population. So many people resent their government. And that is all they can do most of the time. Nobody asks them for their opinion, even on matters of high importance like the Maastricht treaty or if they want to give up their currency in exchange for the Euro. The government considers them intelligent enough to vote for the right party, but believes them to be too stupid to decide directly about things that will determine their fate.

As long as no alternative becomes apparent people will keep electing the same politicians into office that have been disappointing them over the last decade. But when an alternative presents itself (even if it is an illusional one), the so called protest voters go and opt for parties of which you would have thought they would never again appear after 1945.

Just have a look at the voting results in areas with a high unemployment rate. There the votes for right wing parties have been on the rise. At the same time the participation rate in elections is very low (something around 60%?). Find a leader to mobilize those non-voters and you get the majority in parliament and you're not very far from an absolute majority should you be able to pull over some more disappointed voters from the other parties.

Franzonto, I don't mean to say that this is a good thing. I'm not going to vote for the NPD no matter how charismatic a leader they may find. Hitler's "philosophy" of how one race is better than another is quite sick. And it was stupid. A lot of the things that gave Germany whatever greatness it had at the time came from the Jews. Before the Nazis came, Germany was one of the leading nations in science and culture and many of the german scientists and artists were Jews. Germany lost a valuable member of its society every time one of those people went into exile or was imprisoned and killed. Germany has been a second row player in science and culture ever since the war thanks to Hitler's "philosophy".

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JG53Frankyboy:
you should try to read "Mein Kampf" !
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

He's not allowed to do that in Germany. It is illegal to own it.

PraetorHonoris
04-05-2005, 06:19 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by plumps_:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by horseback:
The 1998 law is silly in this specific case. Molders squadron name could easily have been 'overlooked' or as we Americans sometimes do, 'grandfathered' (taking a long existing or accepted situation to be exempt) into the law.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
It had actually been 'overlooked' for six or seven years until suddenly some journalist who somehow had to fill a few minutes of a regular TV program did a very one-sided and emotional report about M√¬∂lders that put the defence secretary under public pressure. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Yes, but it is not just political correctness...

Actually the sozialist gouvernment is loosing all their support from the left wing.
This forces the administration to make some decisions, which are popular among the left wing.

Such decisions are to eradicate any trace of tradition in our armed forces.

Right now the army has to remove everything in their badges that could remind on the Wehrmacht.
Consequently Panzerbataillon 33 has to remove the africa palm (Afrika Korps) and Panzergrenadierbataillon 212 has to replace the greyhound (116. Panzerdivision in WWII), e.g.

It is ironic that the administration, which decided to honor JG74 with the name "M√¬∂lders" was also left wing, actually it was even the same party.
But at that time the Chancellor was a man, who has been Luftwaffe-officer in WWII and nowadays the Chancellor has never been a soldier and has never seen war.

Blutarski2004
04-05-2005, 09:19 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Aztek_Eagle:
this is the kind of reasons why i hate politicians theys shuld kill them selves <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


..... In the USA most politicians are lawyers. This explains a lot about their behavior.

Blutarski2004
04-05-2005, 09:50 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by PraetorHonoris:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by plumps_:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by horseback:
The 1998 law is silly in this specific case. Molders squadron name could easily have been 'overlooked' or as we Americans sometimes do, 'grandfathered' (taking a long existing or accepted situation to be exempt) into the law.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
It had actually been 'overlooked' for six or seven years until suddenly some journalist who somehow had to fill a few minutes of a regular TV program did a very one-sided and emotional report about M√¬∂lders that put the defence secretary under public pressure. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Yes, but it is not just political correctness...

Actually the sozialist gouvernment is loosing all their support from the left wing.
This forces the administration to make some decisions, which are popular among the left wing.

Such decisions are to eradicate any trace of tradition in our armed forces.

Right now the army has to remove everything in their badges that could remind on the Wehrmacht.
Consequently Panzerbataillon 33 has to remove the africa palm (Afrika Korps) and Panzergrenadierbataillon 212 has to replace the greyhound (116. Panzerdivision in WWII), e.g.

It is ironic that the administration, which decided to honor JG74 with the name "M√¬∂lders" was also left wing, actually it was even the same party.
But at that time the Chancellor was a man, who has been Luftwaffe-officer in WWII and nowadays the Chancellor has never been a soldier and has never seen war. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


.....Praetor, what sad news you relate. It is disgusting that there are those in Germany who would have us believe that there is supposedly nothing whatever to respect or honor or consecrate or preserve from those terrible years. Speaking as a citizen of a one time enemy of Germany, I find such an attitude repugnant and reprehensible - nothing more than cynical political ploys by calculating politicians, who care nothing about defacing the memory of men whose fate it was to have gone to war and served their country while under an evil leader.

This reminds me of the insult upon Nowotny's grave by the Austrian government a few years ago - another action of some politically extreme moron with an agenda.

It would make me quite happy to see the Gerhard Schroeder and Joshke Fischer and their crowd go away in the next election.

Ruy Horta
04-05-2005, 10:39 AM
There is some irony in the whole debate.

1. repeating history
2. left wing anti-miltarists gets blame

So how does NOT honoring military heroes help create an authoritarian militarist state?

Wouldn't those with right wing sympathies be more induced to repeat the mistakes of their (glorified) heroes instead of those deadbeat left wing pinkos who would rather smoke pot have lots of sex and stay out of the army and war?

Now something ain't right in this discussion!

Now I am in the middle, I am all for these traditional names, since I love history, but I am mainly a pacifist who loves sex...er..yeah I do http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

That doesn't mean that I am a coward, it just means I'll think twice before my commander in chief orders me to fight some dirty little war.

The truth is somewhere in the middle here http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Thanks for the Tin ear (kinda knew it, but had to be sure, cultural differences etc you know).

Schlagloch
04-05-2005, 11:40 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Ruy Horta:
So how does NOT honoring military heroes help create an authoritarian militarist state?
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

All by itself it doesn't. But it is a symptom of a greater problem. When the current german government got elected they inherited all kinds of problems to solve: unemployment on the rise, state debt at an all time high and climbing, a deteriorating education system, social security systems on the verge of breakdown, the former east german states lagging behind in their development etc. And shortly after their election they don't have anything better to do than pass a law banning the names of former Legion Conder members from military units?

They have proved to be unable to do very much about the real problems and most of them are still there today and often worse than before. Of course the conservative government that was there before them wasn't better. After all it left that mess for the new government to clean up, so noone trusts them to improve the situation should they get elected the next time.

And then you see them spending their time on matters of little consequence: naming of military units (who would have noticed?) or sexist naming of streets (it seems there is an overproportional amount of dead end streets named after women). Then every few weeks you have a scandal of some politician being involved in some kind of corruption.

So what do you expect the people to do when somebody steps up and shouts at them:
Vote for us and we promise you full employment! We will kick out all those foreigners stealing your work! We are going to stop the corruption of policy! We will bring Germany back to the leading position where it belongs! We will make you proud of your country! Vote for us!

It doesn't matter that they won't keep their promises. They just have to keep pounding it into the heads of the people long enough and it will show an effect.

PraetorHonoris
04-05-2005, 11:47 AM
I never said, Germany is going to be an authoritarian militarist state.

I said, the administration tries to kill traditions in order to get voters.

There is a lot in the Wehrmacht, that is not worthy to be a tradition, e.g. the slavish obedience to leaders and orders or hard core nazis like H.U.Rudel.
There is also a lot in the Wehrmacht, that is worthy to be a tradition.

Dishonouring a good man's name in order to get voters is just not right.

Eradicating the Wehrmacht's heritage at all, is eradicating history.
It also implies every German soldier of WWII was bad.

Our Grandfather did not deserve that.

Capt._Tenneal
04-05-2005, 11:59 AM
@ Schlagloch : I'm amused that apparently there is little difference in politicians the world over. Here in the USA, politicians frequently propose trivial laws for "show" instead of tackling the real problems voters elected them to do something about. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

For instance, there is always someone or other proposing to rename high schools named after founding fathers like Washington or Jefferson because they were "slave owners". Yeah, and that will bridge the gap between rich and poor... how exactly ?

Schlagloch
04-05-2005, 12:10 PM
Hmm, amusement is not quite what comes to my mind.

DmdSeeker
04-05-2005, 12:51 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4411771.stm

EJGr.Ost_chamel
04-05-2005, 01:04 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Schlagloch:

So what do you expect the people to do when somebody steps up and shouts at them:
Vote for us and we promise you full employment! We will kick out all those foreigners stealing your work! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I would expect them to think for just a short moment just to find out, that this "somebody" is obviously telling bloody BS and is not worth to be elected.

telsono
04-05-2005, 01:18 PM
This is not the only era that things like this have occured. During WWI there was a great anti-German sentiment that caused places and people to change their names. Look at two of the top US fighter pilots of WWI, Eddie Rickenbacker's pre-war last name was Reichenbacher and Frank Luke's was Luch. There were stories that both of these pilots had secret service agents watching them at the front!
In Bergen County New Jersey there is a town of Carlstadt, originally Karlstadt. This was a German settled community with German prominently spoken in public prior to WWI. All the street names were in German, i.e. Hackensacker Strasse, Mozart Strasse. these were all changed to their English equivalents. This little town is know for being where Kindergardens were first developed.
The Union and Confederate Generals were acknowledged by the US Army in the name of armored vehicles:
M3 Grant and Lee tanks
M4 Sherman
M36 Jackson

We do have to remember our histories so that we don't repeat it. Enough said.

Ruy Horta
04-06-2005, 03:39 AM
There is a difference between REMEMBERING, HONORING or GLORIFYING.

You can remember and even honor without glorifying.

I remember...sometimes I honor, but I seldom or never glorify.

Franzonto
04-06-2005, 05:48 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JG53Frankyboy:
as an half mexican i doubt you would vote for a Nazi party that is following Hilters "philosophy" ! you would counted as an "under-human" i assume. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well, yes, but I'm not crying for the same conditions.. actually I think it's not so much about race (though it matters a little) but rather about culture. Protecting it and forcing foreigners to adapt to it or leave is not something too inhumane.
I have many friends where one parent comes from some random part of the globe, I see them as equal to all my other friends. And yet I generalize against certain minorities... obviously it is not because of their looks, but because of their reluctance to adapt to this culture.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
you should try to read "Mein Kampf" !
this man was the real evil ! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Actually I'm currently doing that, and it brought me all the closer to the theory.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
NO political "philosophie" of the last 100years had such inhuman theories like the NAzi one, even the communist/stalinist one not ! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I beg to differ. What the Nazis did, and what Hitler imagined before he came to power are two different things. Also I'd be careful about belittleling Stalin.. I see him as 50 times more evil than Hitler, because he never seemed to have doubts or reluctance about killing many million of his own men. Also he was no visionary, just a brutal tyrant, little more. Hitler is definately different.

BTW, have you read his book yourself, or are you just talking about it in general terms?

Blutarski2004
04-06-2005, 07:46 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by telsono:
This is not the only era that things like this have occured. During WWI there was a great anti-German sentiment that caused places and people to change their names. Look at two of the top US fighter pilots of WWI, Eddie Rickenbacker's pre-war last name was Reichenbacher and Frank Luke's was Luch. There were stories that both of these pilots had secret service agents watching them at the front!
In Bergen County New Jersey there is a town of Carlstadt, originally Karlstadt. This was a German settled community with German prominently spoken in public prior to WWI. All the street names were in German, i.e. Hackensacker Strasse, Mozart Strasse. these were all changed to their English equivalents. This little town is know for being where Kindergardens were first developed.
The Union and Confederate Generals were acknowledged by the US Army in the name of armored vehicles:
M3 Grant and Lee tanks
M4 Sherman
M36 Jackson

We do have to remember our histories so that we don't repeat it. Enough said. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


..... All nations are vulnerable to such passions of the moment, as you point out so well.

But this Moelders foolishness is different in nature. It is a case of arbitrarily stepping back 70 years for no good reason whatsoever to make a lame political statement at the price of a good man's name. Moelders was a young and religious man whose talent in life was to fly. His rapid rise through the ranks of the LW had nothing to do with political affiliation and everything to do with his natural leadership and management skills. Moelders was never a member of the NSDAP. His government sent him to Spain and he went, along with everyone else in the Condor Legion, the Italian expeditionary forces, and all those Soviet "volunteers".

Apparently the "politicians" behind this stupidity are unable to recognize simple national patriotism. Or perhaps these people just do not care about it as a concept.

I'm frankly revolted by the whole affair.

Ruy Horta
04-06-2005, 10:58 AM
Ah, revolting?

If the SPD loses the next election and Germany gets a government that wants to restore these names through the process called democracy, it will happen in due course.

No harm done, remember in 1919 the Germans were forbidden the use of military aircraft and look almost a century later there is a Luftwaffe.

I once had the honor to speak with a Ritterkreuztr√¬§ger of the Jagdwaffe, great guy. He shared with us (1999, JG 53 of WarBirds) the fact that he couldn't openly talk of the past or wear his decorations without being judged a war criminal by the younger generation.

In a rare display of frankness his voice full of emotion and his eyes filled with tears. A man who really gave it his best, who still bore the scars of being burned alive in the cockpit of his 109.

Yes, this man and men like him deserve our respect.

Later I wrote to him that I would regard it a shame if his decoration were to be denazified. But I also thought that in leaving them as they were, they could not be worn (of course you could wear denazified replicas).

Why no denazification?

If you really want to learn from the past, you should not make the past more beautifil than it really was. The Ritterkreuz of the Eiserne Kreuz was a Nazi medal, period. The events, however heroic, that earned them were under a Nazi flag. To clean up that fact is the first step in forgetting and the first step towards repeating the same mistakes.

Yes, I do think that Germans have to think twice, unforunately that is a weight they'll have to bear for some time to come, call it their debt.