HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL DAY 2020

Go here to read about the Holocaust Memorial Day in January of 2020: https://www.hmd.org.uk/take-part-in-holocaust-memorial-day/holocaust-memorial-day-2020/

12/05/2019

Kill Hitler Time Travel

Time travelers: please don’t kill Hitler

By  | Fri 21 Feb 2014

In almost any science-fiction scenario involving time-travel, the default action is to kill Hitler. As terrible a human being as he was, there are many reasons why this probably isn’t a good idea.


kill Hitler time travel

Adolf Hitler at a rally, likely surrounded by time-travelling assassins in disguise.
Photograph: Popperfoto/Getty Images


If you find yourself suddenly gaining access to a time machine, what’s the first thing you’d do? If you said “kill Adolf Hitler”, then congratulations; you’re a science-fiction character. Actually, the whole “access to a time machine” thing suggested that already, but the desire to kill Hitler clinches it. Any time-travelling sci-fi character (at least ones created by Western society) seems to want to kill Hitler, so much so that there’s a trope about how it’s impossible.
That attempting to kill Hitler has become such a common sci-fi plot device speaks volumes. What about Stalin? He was arguably worse, killing 20 million of his own people to fuel his ideology. But no, Stalin went about his business unmolested by time travelers, all of whom are busy targeting Hitler.
It’s understandable. Who wouldn’t want to prevent the Holocaust? It’s probably the worst thing in history. And I only say “probably” because I don’t know all of history, and the human capacity to be awful should not be underestimated. But as noble as it seems, killing the Fuhrer via time travel is a terrible idea, for real-world reasons, not just those in fiction. So should you get hold of a time machine and make plans to kill Hitler, here are some reasons why you shouldn’t.

Ethical quandary

Could you actually kill another human being? Despite what pop culture implies, humans generally aren’t predisposed to killing each other. This isn’t an absolute, of course. Abstract thinking about homicide is relatively common, and many humans end up taking the lives of others due to complex circumstances such as brutal upbringings/environments, or possibly psychiatric illness. And of course, some people are just evil. It seems challenging to reconcile these motivations with the mentality that plans to kill Hitler as an altruistic act.
But let’s assume you are willing to kill one to save millions of others. All of history to visit, and your first port of call involves killing. Fine. Whatever. When do you kill Hitler? As a child, Hitler hadn’t done anything monstrous enough to warrant his murder, so would you be willing to take his life then? Minority Report struggled with this issue, and that was on a much smaller scale.
Maybe later, when the Reich is in place but he hadn’t committed genocide yet. But would this be too late? Once everything has been set up, would eliminating Hitler change anything? This brings us onto another reason not to do it.

Wider context

Stephen Fry dealt with this superbly in his book Making History. Without spoilers, the problem is that many assume Hitler was the sole cause of the second world war and all the associated horrors. Sadly, this is a gross oversimplification. Germany in the 1930s wasn’t a utopia of basket-weaving peace lovers who were suddenly and severely corrupted by Hitler’s charismatic moustache. The political tensions and strife were all there, results of a previous world war and a great depression; Hitler was just able to capitalise on this. But if he hadn’t, say because he had been eliminated by an errant time traveller, then there’s nothing to say that nobody else would.
Problems rarely exist in isolation. Just like you can’t go in and rip out a tumour because it’s connected to the wider body which will react badly to such a blunt intrusion, elimination of the main figurehead won’t necessarily prevent events that were as much a product of the wider socio-political context. So if you did try it …

Chaos theory

There’s the oft-quoted example of the butterfly effect, ie very small changes in a very complex system can have very big effects. You can criticise Hitler for many valid reasons, but one thing he wasn’t was “insignificant”; if he were, there’d be no desire to assassinate him. So even if you did succeed, given the impact he had on so many lives, you’d drastically alter the future/present, even if it panned out to be “better” without Hitler.
Say whoever replaced him was ineffectual and the war ended with reduced loss of life and destruction. In this timeline, maybe no German rocket scientists ended up in the US. The space programme loses some of its best minds, and happens more slowly (or not at all?) The space race resulted in a breath-taking amount of scientific advancement and spinoff technology, one strand of which eventually led to time travel. Now that you’ve changed things, time travel wasn’t invented in your lifetime, so either you vanish and the whole thing is undone, or your time machine does. So now you’re stranded in wartime Berlin. And you’ve just killed the beloved leader of one of the most powerful military machines in history.
Good luck with that.

Cultural reference

This may seem like a minor issue, but it’s not wise to dismiss how Hitler and his actions shaped the society of those who opposed him. The Nazis are almost unanimously considered to have been the “bad guys”. The phenomenon of Godwin’s law underscores the cultural reflex of Nazis = evil and wrong. Anyone who agrees with them in present times is (quite rightly) condemned en masse. Without this stark and horrible example of how prejudice and fascism can lead to atrocities, would such things be as vilified as they are today? The existence of Hitler likely served to unite his enemies at a societal level, which has considerable ramifications.
And let’s not overlook the consequences of the war that led to important changes in terms of equality and the like in society as a whole. This isn’t to say these things wouldn’t happen anyway, but it’s likely they happened a lot faster due to Hitler’s presence. It’s impossible to say how many may have suffered and died over the years, if people hadn’t banded together to fight Hitler. Is this something you’d risk changing?

Hitler lost

This is overlooked surprisingly often, so it bears repeating: Hitler didn’t win. Whatever you think of the present, we don’t live in some bleak wasteland dominated by a global Reich. Because Hitler and his armies lost. Although it was a costly victory, it was still technically a victory, so why risk going back and interfering with an outcome you favour? And arguably, it was due to Hitler’s incompetence as a strategist that the war panned out the way it did.
In a way, Hitler had the perfect combination of drive, charisma, evil and incompetence to unite the world against him and ensure that his forces lost. It’s such an unlikely combination of factors that the only way to consciously make it happen would be to go back in time and remove anyone else who might have …
… oh. Oh dear.
Dean Burnett promises he is not a time-travelling Nazi. But then, he would say that, wouldn’t he? Keep an eye on him on Twitter, @garwboy

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11/24/2019

Aung San Suu Kyi Hearings on Rohingya

Suu Kyi to contest Rohingya genocide case at world court

Shoon Naing, Thu Thu Aung

YANGON (Reuters) - Aung San Suu Kyi will appear before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to contest a case filed by Gambia accusing Myanmar of genocide against its Rohingya Muslim minority, her government said on Wednesday.


Aung San Suu Kyi Hearings on Rohingya


More than 730,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled to neighboring Bangladesh since a 2017 crackdown by Myanmar’s military, which U.N. investigators say was carried out with “genocidal intent”. Buddhist majority Myanmar denies accusations of genocide.

Gambia, a tiny, mainly Muslim West African state, lodged its lawsuit after winning the support of the 57-nation Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (OIC). Only a state can file a case against another state at the ICJ.

“Myanmar has retained prominent international lawyers to contest the case submitted by Gambia,” the ministry for state counselor Suu Kyi’s office said in a Facebook post.

“The State Counselor, in her capacity as Union Minister for Foreign Affairs, will lead a team to the Hague, Netherlands, to defend the national interest of Myanmar at the ICJ,” it said, giving no further details.

Military spokesman Brigadier General Zaw Min Tun told Reuters the decision was made after the army consulted with the government. “We, the military, will fully cooperate with the government and we will follow the instruction of the government,” he said.

A spokesman for Suu Kyi’s party, the National League for Democracy, said she had decided to take on the case herself.

“They accused () Aung San Suu Kyi of failing to speak out about human rights violations,” spokesman Myo Nyunt said. “She decided to face the lawsuit by herself.”

Both Gambia and Myanmar are signatories to the 1948 Genocide Convention, which not only prohibits states from committing genocide but also compels all signatory states to prevent and punish the crime of genocide.

The ICJ has said it will hold the first public hearings in the case on Dec. 10 to 12. The court has no means to enforce any of its rulings.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE HERE: AUNG SAN SUU KYI ROHINGYA HEARINGS


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11/15/2019

Did Hitler Escape to South America?

Hitler may have escaped Germany for South America, say CIA memos from the JFK files


did Hitler escape to south america
This photo was alleged to show Adolf Hitler as he was hiding in South America after World War II. SCREENSHOT FROM CIA DOCUMENTS

It’s regarded as a historical fact that Adolf Hitler killed himself on April 30, 1945, when it became increasingly clear that Nazi Germany would fall to Allied forces.

But a handful of recently-declassified CIA documents, unveiled with the highly anticipated JFK files last week, show that the Central Intelligence Agency was investigating whether Hitler escaped from Europe and was hiding in Colombia in 1954.

The first document, dated Oct. 3, 1955, says that an unnamed CIA agent referred to as “CIMELODY-3” was contacted by “a trusted friend who served under his command in Europe and who is presently residing in Maracaibo (Venezuela).”

That friend, who also remained anonymous, told the CIA agent that a former German SS trooper named Phillip Citroen told him that Hitler was actually still alive — and that the former dictator could no longer be prosecuted as a criminal of war because it had been over 10 years since the end of World War II.

Citroen, according to the document, said he had been talking to Hitler “about once a month” during a business trip that took him to Colombia, where he said Hitler was hiding.

The former German SS trooper also told CIMELODY-3’s friend that he posed with the alleged Hitler for a photograph, which was included in the CIA memo.

Citroen said he is on the left side of the image, while the man he claims to be Hitler is on the right. The back of the image said “Adolf Shrittelmayor, Tunga, Colombia, 1954.”

Citroen also told CIMELODY-3’s friend that Hitler moved to Argentina around Jan. 1955, the memo details.

Another document, this one dated Oct. 17, 1955, provided more information, citing “an undated memorandum, believed to have been written in about mid February 1954.”
According to that CIA memo, Citroen told a former member of the CIA base in Maracaibo that he met a person “who strongly resembled and claimed to be” Hitler in “Residencias Coloniales,” which was located in Tunja, Colombia. The document says that Citroen claimed many former Nazis were living in that area — and that they held the alleged Hitler in high esteem, “addressing him as ‘der Fuhrer’ and affording him the Nazi salute and storm-trooper adulation.”

But the CIA remained skeptical — in a letter dated Nov. 4, 1955, higher-ups casted doubt on the reports.

“It is felt that enormous efforts (spent trying to confirm the rumors) could be expanded on this matter with remote possibilities of establishing anything concrete,” the letter said. “Therefore, we suggest that this matter be dropped.”

That appears to be the final document released with the JFK files about Hitler potentially hiding in South America.

Even though seemingly nothing came from the reports, a source at the Department of Defense told NationalInterest.org that it’s still interesting someone at the CIA spent any time on the case at all.

“The source thought it worthy of sending up to HQ which is notable,” the source said. “Even at the time, those guys had to do a lot of separating the wheat from the chaff.”
Others have claimed that Hitler found refuge in South America after he was defeated in World War II.

Abel Basti, an Argentine journalist, wrote a book titled “Tras los pasos de Hitler” that tracked the alleged movements of Hitler throughout South America and, more specifically, Colombia, according to Colombia Reports.

“I have a CIA document that says that Hitler was in Colombia, also a CIA photo of Hitler in the town of Tunja where he met with another Nazi named Phillipe Citro├źn in 1954,” he said, according to Colombia Reports.

There was additional controversy surrounding Hitler’s death in 2009, when U.S. researchers say they conducted a DNA test for an hour on what the Russian government claimed was a skull fragment from the German dictator.
The researchers found it belonged to “a woman between the ages of 20 and 40,” Nick Bellantoni, from the University of Connecticut, told ABC News.