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Home > Secteur-English > General > ISIS versus the Nazis : An Unspeakable Parallel

ISIS versus the Nazis : An Unspeakable Parallel

Evil is not impoverished. Adolph Hitler had no qualms whatsoever about formulating an absolutely false and horrific view of the Jews. The deep, deep surprise is that countless many people in Nazi Germany accepted Hitler’s absolutely horrific and utterly indefensible view of the Jews. I never thought that in my life time I would see an evil that was parallel to the evil of Nazi Germany. Alas, I was wrong. For ISIS is that parallel.

It will be remembered that what mattered to Hitler was not truth, but the elimination of Jews from the face of the earth. And any evil characterization of the Jew, no matter how implausible, was justified precisely because it contributed to that end. Thus, it was utterly irrelevant to Hitler that Jews in Germany were quite loyal citizens.

If the Nazis represent evil at its most despicable, then ISIS is none other than the Nazis of the 21st Century. And one indisputable piece of evidence of this is the utter indifference ISIS has to the killing of innocent people—indeed, the horrific killing of innocent people by beheading them. ISIS is breathtakingly comfortable with showing such beheadings as a sign of its strength and determination.

Of course, this is all being done in the name of Islam, and thus in the name of Allah. And so we yet another parallel between ISIS and the Nazis ; for the Nazis killed Jews in the name of Christianity.

I hold that there can be no greater mockery of a Supreme Being than the attitude and conviction that it is morally permissible to kill innocent individuals in the name of that Supreme Being.

Of course, the claim of the Nazis was that Jews—simply in virtue of being such—are evil people. And in effect ISIS holds precisely this view of non-Muslims generally. This, of course, tells us what surely we should all unequivocally grasp about evil, namely that truth as such is utterly irrelevant to evil. Indeed, there are two unequivocally clear signs of evil : (1) The good that a person is doing is irrelevant if the person is not supporting the cause of the group. (2) A person essentially has no entitlement to innocence if she or he is not a member of the group or an ever so clear supporter of the group. Taken together, these two premises explain why countless many Christians have been killed in countries dominated by Islam merely because the individuals where Christians. There is no greater sign of sheer evil on the part of group of people than that they invest considerable time and effort in innocent killing people. The Nazis so behaved. ISIS is so behaving.

I have no trouble whatsoever with people standing up for what is right. But I object mightily when the idea of standing up for what is right proves to be none other than an excuse to inflict irreparable harm upon others. Just as the Nazis revealed the extraordinary capacity on the part of human beings for self-deception, the very same claim can be made of ISIS and many Muslims.

George Santayana claimed that “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”. Unfortunately, Santayana’s claim misses the mark in a most profound way. For a most disconcerting fact is that evil routinely repeats itself. There is no substantial difference between the Nazis and ISIS. Yet, countless are the people around the world have failed to draw this ever so obvious parallel.


© Laurence Thomas

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