For two weeks, since racist and hate-filled groups clashed in Charlottesville, Virginia, we’ve been listening to the talking heads, none of whom even live in the America most of us do. We’ve heard guests and so-called hard news anchors attack President Trump, claiming his statement condemning all violence was a dog whistle to white supremacists.
Predictably, his stronger statement condemning white supremacist groups by name didn’t silence his critics. The following Tuesday, President Trump started another firestorm when he said that both sides were to blame.
Mitt Romney took to Facebook to say there is “no conceivable comparison or moral equivalency between the Nazis–who brutally murdered millions of Jews and who hundreds of thousands of Americans gave their lives to defeat–and the counter-protestors who were outraged to see fools parading the Nazi flag, Nazi armband and Nazi salute.”
New York Times reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg was attacked on Twitter after she made the mistake of tweeting the truth, correctly observing that the “hard left seemed as hate-filled as alt-right. I saw club-wielding ‘antifa’ beating white nationalists being led out of the park.”
She quickly caved to social media pressure, which came in the form of users and mediates basically claiming “only one group would commit genocide against the other if given power.”
Yes, fair enough. See my TL for a correction
— Sheryl Gay Stolberg (@SherylNYT) August 13, 2017
The basic argument is that Adolf Hitler and, by extension Nazism, was and is worse than Leftism because the Third Reich was responsible for the horror of the Holocaust. Hitler, they argue, is different because he attempted to eradicate an entire people on racial or ethnic grounds. Thus, there is no moral equivalence between Neo-Nazi groups and Antifa.
But is that really true?
Historically, absolutely not. The false moral equivalence, the new deadliest sin which Ms. Stolberg and President Trump have committed, is a false criticism. Let’s look at the real, horrifying truth by the numbers.
The total number of noncombatants killed by fascists in Germany—including some 5.4 million Jews—totaled 11 million. Roughly 2.6 million Jews were killed by shooting and 2.8 million by gassing, including 1,000,000 at Auschwitz, 780,863 at Treblinka, 434,508 at Bełz˙ec, roughly 180,000 at Sobibór, another 150,000 at Chełmno and 59,000 at Majdanek.
A few hundred thousand more Jews died during deportations to ghettos, or of hunger or disease while in those ghettos. Romania, Germany’s ally during World War II, killed some 300,000 Jews, while the Germans also killed more than 100,000 Roma.
As horrific as they are, these numbers pale in comparison to other forms of leftwing governments. Socialist governments killed hundreds of millions of people in the 20th century, alone. Marxist regimes, those “given power” who practiced the most deadly form of socialism, murdered nearly 110 million people from 1917 to 1987.
And they continue to do so in North Korea, Latin America and elsewhere to this very day.
“No cause, ever, in the history of all mankind, has produced more cold-blooded tyrants, more slaughtered innocents, and more orphans than socialism with power,” Alan Charles Kors wrote in The Atlas Society in 2003. “It surpassed, exponentially, all other systems of production in turning out the dead. The bodies are all around us. And here is the problem: No one talks about them. No one honors them. No one does penance for them.”
Quite the contrary. Big Media and politicians make excuses for those who subscribe to the same worldview as the regimes that caused their deaths.
Democide, as defined by R.J. Rummel in his seminal work Death by Government, is “the murder of any person or people by a government, including genocide, politicide and mass murder; and although the figures are dynamic, six times as many people died as a result of democide during the 20th century than in all that century’s wars combined.”
For comparison, roughly 35 million were killed as a result of all domestic and foreign wars during the 20th century. Rummel demonstrated that socialism, specifically Marxism, is “by far the bloodiest” ideology when backed by power.
In practice, Marxism has meant bloody terrorism, deadly purges, lethal prison camps and murderous forced labor, fatal deportations, man-made famines, extrajudicial executions and fraudulent show trials, outright mass murder and genocide.
Stalin alone obliterates a central thesis in the false moral equivalence argument. The Stalin-sanctioned famine of 1930 to 1933 killed more than 5 million people. Of those who starved in 1932 and 1933, roughly 3.3 million residents of Soviet Ukraine were the victims of a killing policy tied directly to nationality.
Mao Zedong, or Mao Tse-tung, put both Hitler and Stalin to shame. The Great Leap Forward policy led to an estimated 45 million deaths from 1958 to 1962, making it the biggest act of democide or mass murder ever recorded.
Leftists not only targeted groups of people based on nationality and ethnicity, as Hitler did, but also ideas. Antifa’s tactics to scapegoat groups mirror those used by socialists regimes during their rise to power and subsequent killing sprees.
Antifa, the American brand of Anti-Fascist Action in Britain and Antifaschistische Aktion in Germany, is not a new group. Anti-fascist groups popped up in Europe during the first half of the 20th century and again in the United Kingdom in the 1980s to counter conservatism, an ideology that is the antithesis of fascism.
They also happen to be leftwing extremists designated as a domestic terror group in New Jersey. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has officially classified the activities of Antifa as “domestic terrorist violence.”
While they often claim and are reported to be anti-government, they and similiar groups have long-served as the “useful idiots” of despotic, leftwing regimes. U.S.S.R. flags are routinely carried by Antifa and the threat of imminent tyranny at the hands of fascists has long-been their go-to rallying cry. Most of their other scapegoats might also sound familiar to readers.
As Rummel wrote in an op-ed for World Net Daily, leftists always frame their cause as “a war on poverty, exploitation, imperialism and inequality–and, as in a real war, noncombatants would unfortunately get caught in the battle.”
“There would be necessary enemy casualties: the clergy, bourgeoisie, capitalists, ‘wreckers’, intellectuals, counterrevolutionaries, rightists, tyrants, the rich and landlords,” Rummel wrote. “As in a war,” he wrote, people might die, “but these deaths would be justified by the end… To the ruling Marxists, the goal of a communist utopia was enough to justify all the deaths.”
The latter was on full display in a recent featured story on CNN, which openly justified violence routinely used by Antifa. As Breitbart News underscored, “CNN lays out the narrative that the leftist protesters are driven to violence in an effort to achieve peace.”
“Antifa leaders admit they’re willing to physically attack anyone who employs violence against them or who condones racism — as long as force is used in the name of eradicating hatred,” CNN stated in their outrageous report.
This is the horrific history of socialism, rewriting and repeating itself. They justify violence in the name of peace and sympathetic media outlets such as Reuters even try to portray them as “peace activists.” But once their preferred system of government is in place, they go on a killing spree unrivaled by any of the boogeymen they had dreamed up.
For leftwing groups like Antifa, dissenting views are not tolerated and violence used to enforce that intolerance is justified by other useful idiots, i.e. CNN and Reuters. It’s propaganda at a skill level that would impress Joseph Goebbels, himself.
In truth, there is a moral equivalence between Neo-Nazis and Antifa, given the regimes and ideologies they represent. It’s a false, intellectually dishonest interpretation of history to argue that they are somehow that different from each other.
Fascists have more in common with Antifa than we are led to believe, certainly more than the most rightwing conservative. They are both socialists at their core. Nazi, or the National Socialist German Workers’ Party, also placed a strong emphasis on centralized government and the subjective collective good above individual liberty. Of course, the latter is the predominant concern in conservatism and classical liberalism.
There is nothing “rightwing” about using government to impose your will on others, as both groups propose to do. The only differences between their ideologies are their victims.
“The problem is power. The solution is democracy,” Rummel argued. “The course of action is to foster freedom.”
That includes freedom of speech, as vial and bigoted as it may be. But in the end, groups that use violence and terror to crush dissenting speech are the problem, not the solution. They are all a threat to freedom.