Monday, 27 February 2017

Chris Hedges on Bannon, race and fascism

"Trump is stoking the darkest and most destructive strains of the American psyche. Congress, controlled by the Republicans, is unlikely to use impeachment powers to stop him. The courts are spineless subsidiaries of the corporate and security and surveillance state. The elites will not save us. If we fail to build mass protest movements, ones that cripple the ability to govern, we will be enslaved.

Sebastian Haffner (1907-1999) in his book “Defying Hitler” describes being a law clerk at the Prussian Supreme Court. The courthouse was raided in March 1933 by Nazi thugs. They grabbed the Jewish judges and lawyers and hauled them outside; never would the jurists return to their posts. A Jewish attorney, a former army captain who had been wounded five times and lost an eye fighting in World War I, resisted. He was beaten. “It had probably been his misfortune that he still remembered the tone to use with mutineers,” Haffner wrote.

“I put my head down over my work,” Haffner went on. “I read a few sentences mechanically: ‘The defendant’s claim that … is untrue, but irrelevant. …’ Just take no notice!”

A brown shirt approached him and asked: “Are you Aryan?

Haffner shot back, “Yes.”

“A moment too late I felt the shame, the defeat,” he wrote. “I had said ‘Yes! Well, in God’s name, I was indeed an ‘Aryan.’ I had not lied, I had allowed something much worse to happen. What a humiliation, to have answered the unjustified question as to whether I was ‘Aryan’ so easily, even if the fact was of no importance to me! What a disgrace to buy, with a reply, the right to stay with my documents in peace! I had been caught unawares, even now. I had failed my very first test.”

Haffner left the Kammergericht, Prussia’s highest state court, and stood outside.

“There was nothing to show that, as an institution, it has just collapsed,” he wrote. “There was also nothing about my appearance to show that I had just suffered a terrible reverse, a defeat that would be almost impossible to make good. A well-dressed young man walked down Potsdamer Street. There was nothing untoward about the scene. Business as usual, but in the air the approaching thunder of events to come.”"

Chris Hedges.


  1. Either a nation has borders, or it doesn't. Either you give government the power to enforce those borders, or you no longer require any government.

  2. No more Gummint: hurray! ;-)