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Belmont Club

The Dangerously Good

December 21st, 2013 - 9:26 pm

Alex Coe, writer for the Los Angeles Times, raises an age-old question without quite answering it. She reviews Wendy Lower’s book Hitler’s Furies, in which we are told to prepare ourselves for the thunderous news that many of the most brutal killers of the Holocaust were women; creatively cruel and sedulously murderous women — and most of them got away.  Coe writes:

genocide is usually considered the business of men, and thus, when it came time to call Nazis to account for their crimes, prosecutors were less interested in these women than in their male colleagues and husbands, people of position and ascertainable power. German defense lawyers convinced courts that women lacked the authority to enact atrocities. Despite the international community’s acute taste for war crime trials, only the rare, flagrantly sadistic woman, like Ilse Koch, the “Bitch of Buchenwald,” captured public attention.

But no one who has read Kipling should have surprised that women could be cruel. His lines in the poem, the Young British Soldier are unforgettable. A Queen had sent him to die, and a tribeswoman would dismember him alive.

When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.
Go, go, go like a soldier,
Go, go, go like a soldier,
Go, go, go like a soldier,
So-oldier of the Queen!

But to return to the question, why are women cruel?  The answers offered in the review appear to be cast in the standard framework of sexual politics and male domination. “Violence, as Lower points out, was often entangled with both intimacy and recreation for women in the Nazi East. It was not uncommon to pass mass graves while taking a lover’s stroll in the forest, or picnic near a concentration camp within visible range of smoke rising from a crematorium.”  It was all kinky sex control of some sort we are told.

But I have another theory. The  Nazi women were so apt to cruelty because they were “good and obedient” citizens.  It wasn’t that they were all sex slaves of some sort.  They were just good farm girls who would go and slaughter the chicken while the men sat around and yarned. Of course it’s not that simple, but the link between what is regarded as exemplary behavior and cruelty has been known for a long time.

My first glimpse into the connection between the qualities of earnestness and cruelty was during the anti-Marcos underground years. I observed that the communist ideology took deepest root in people I had heretofore regarded as clean-living and pious people, the seminarians and religious, the properly brought up, college educated, hard-studying youth. Fanaticism seemed to have a special appeal to them. By contrast it took  less of a grip on petty thieves, crooks and rogues precisely because they were incurably sly, undisciplined and weak.

I asked someone once why the hard core communists were so humorless. The answer was memorable and succinct. “They take themselves too seriously.”

For there is nothing so lethal as a young man — or woman — who is completely convinced that he or she is engaged in saving the world. It is probably no coincidence that some of the worst and most pitiless men in the world are either academics or consider themselves religious. Abimael Guzman, for example, is a great favorite of that other revolutionary academic Jose Maria Sison, and is almost mind-bogglingly cruel. Sison’s other favorite is Kim Jong-un a man who will machine-gun his girlfriend or execute his uncle if it serves the cause of the party.

Theodore Dalrymple has written that “the worst brutality I ever saw was that committed by Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path) in Peru, in the days when it seemed possible that it might come to power. If it had, I think its massacres would have dwarfed those of the Khmer Rouge. As a doctor, I am accustomed to unpleasant sights, but nothing prepared me for what I saw in Ayacucho, where Sendero first developed under the sway of a professor of philosophy, Abimael Guzmán.”

It takes a while to see it, but like one of those optical illusions where the image of the tiger is hidden in the pattern once you see it, you can’t get it out of your mind. ”I did my best,” an old Marcos era friend told me, “to get myself transferred from political prison to ordinary criminal jail. It wasn’t that the criminals were better people. Hell, no. It’s that they were people.” When you read Coe’s book review you get the distinct impression that the Nazi women were efficient at murdering the Jews precisely for the same reason that they were so efficient at sweeping up dust. It had become a “good task” to do and they went about doing it.

There are no greater hotbeds of leftist fanaticism today that the academe. That the academe has become increasingly the province of women is not coincidental.

There may have been more cruel women than men because girls are more serious than boys.  Every tyrant knows this and makes a special effort to recruit the intellectuals, the women and the earnest.  The people who dot their i’s, make sure the faucet is turned off and always tie their shoelaces.  Dictators don’t do very well by and large, among weepy, “unreliable” and lumpen who are irredeemably riddled with human vice.

Don’t take my word for it, taken Lenin’s.

The low-life are so absolutely cynical that no amount of brainwashing can turn them into true believers.  None of them can accept another human being as a messiah with a straight face.  You need an educated, pajama wearing, chocolate sipping demi-man to get a true believer. Flawed people might sporadically be useful to the party, but only perfect people can really do the apparatchik job really well.

There’s nothing so dangerous  as the scrupulously obedient, especially in a revolution.  All the demagogue must do is switch their gods around and they will follow one as well as the other.

To Kipling’s great credit that he never confused humanity with social virtue. One of his most famous poetic stories is about the steamship Birkenhead, upon which a company of Royal Marines was embarked when it struck a rock on its way to the colonies. And as only a few lifeboats were provided, the commander of the Royal Marines kept his armed body of strong young men by marching them up and down the deck of the sinking ship while the women and children boarded the lifeboats. They died to a man.

Kipling understands that they sacrificed themselves, not because they were good, but because they were brothers, even brothers in blackguardry, which is not quite the same thing as obedient virtue. And any men who is convinced of something so irrational as the honor of dying beside his putrid, lying friend is the least apt of tyranny’s instruments. So Kipling’s lines.

But to stand an’ be still to the Birken’ead drill is a damn tough bullet to chew,
An’ they done it, the Jollies—’Er Majesty’s Jollies—soldier an’ sailor too!
Their work was done when it ’adn’t begun; they was younger nor me an’ you;
Their choice it was plain between drownin’ in ’eaps an’ bein’ mopped by the screw,
So they stood an’ was still to the Birken’ead drill, soldier an’ sailor too!

We’re most of us liars, we’re ’arf of us thieves, an’ the rest are as rank as can be,
But once in a while we can finish in style (which I ’ope it won’t ’appen to me).

For a man to wish, not to remake the world, but escape from his debt at cards, and not to have to face holystoning the deck one more time; “to go to his God” or to “finish in style” — such a man is saved forever. But I hope it won’t happen to me.


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Top Rated Comments   
Pimping your own BLOG? I have no idea who Robert Caruso is or why he'd try to wipe out Oathkeepers. No idea why you're indicting all "so called conservative media" and PJM writers.

I do know who benefits when dissension runs riot amongst the conservative ranks, and it's not conservatives.

I trust a lot fewer people today than 20 years ago. I don't believe the GOP can be resurrected as a viable voice representing conservatism, as the GOP progressives will act to divide and defeat the Republican party before they'll tolerate truly conservative ideas and leaders within the party. My distrust of establishment Republicans has been well earned by them for over 40 years.

That's a reasonable reaction to easily observable facts. However, going after nearly all conservatives as "America's Vichy con Right", as you have done, is not constructive and reeks of "tin foil hat" rantings.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
About 0200, 26 February 1852, the iron hulled paddle wheel steamer HMS Birkenhead, carrying soldiers and their families to South Africa for the Xhosa War, struck a rock off Cape Town and sank. The women and children were put in the three remaining lifeboats, while the men, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Seton of the 74th Regiment of Foot, assembled in ranks on the deck. Fearing that hundreds of men leaving the sinking ship would endanger the women and children in the lifeboats, Seton set his men to doing close order drill while the ship sank beneath them. Obama probably never heard of HMS Birkenhead, and such courage and gallantry would have only made him sneer, but he is attempting his own version of the Birkenhead Drill, ordering the Democrats to stand firm while the ship sinks beneath them.

In the darkness off a rocky shore
Obama’s ship has struck
Taking all aboard her down
If we have any luck

43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
>>> You need an educated, pajama wearing, chocolate sipping demi-man to get a true believer.<<<

And from that crew of humorless, "ironic", believers in their Messiah; who love "humanity" and have contempt for people, and who do not consider half of the population of the country to be properly human because they are not as them will gladly kill us all. And lose no sleep over it.

Sheltered from reality all their lives, they do not view death as real until it comes for them. Which coming always surprises them because they have always been told that they are so special.

Not all Pajama-boys living in their mother's basements will become keepers of the killing fields, but that demographic will be a good recruiting ground, and the women who accompany them. I will not say "love them" because I am not sure that they can relate enough to another human being to love.

Subotai Bahadur
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (63)
All Comments   (63)
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But to return to the question, why are women cruel?

Because we are fallible human beings, just like men. Women may not have had the political power (like many average men throughout history) to act out their destructive side to the degree of the superdominant male, but it is certainly there. Female cruelty is not a mystery among women.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Once fellow Belmont Clubbers observe the intense efforts on the part of so-called 'conservative' media, including sadly some PJM writers, to downplay the upcoming revelations of NSA crimes including illegal conspiracy to violate 18 U.S.C. § 921 et seq. with a nationwide gun purchase registry, well then what to say but evil knows no party, no ideological label?

I'm quite confident @RobertCaruso would gladly join a 'federal militia' to wipe out Oathkeepers in his AO he calls 'anarchist scum' if he thought he could get away with it and they wouldn't get him first. That's just one example from America's Vichy con 'Right'. Another I shudder to contemplate is what 'ex' NStasiA man John R. Schindler of the Naval War College would do if he were made a Gauleiter. Probably start the blackbagging of NSA critics forthwith. At the very least, if Utah or Texas lawmakers called for the arrest of Bluffdale or San Antonio employees complicit in illegal gun registering by state troopers, Schindler will likely be calling for the state legislators to be arrested or killed.

http://westernrifleshooters.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/20616/#comment-49379

43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Pimping your own BLOG? I have no idea who Robert Caruso is or why he'd try to wipe out Oathkeepers. No idea why you're indicting all "so called conservative media" and PJM writers.

I do know who benefits when dissension runs riot amongst the conservative ranks, and it's not conservatives.

I trust a lot fewer people today than 20 years ago. I don't believe the GOP can be resurrected as a viable voice representing conservatism, as the GOP progressives will act to divide and defeat the Republican party before they'll tolerate truly conservative ideas and leaders within the party. My distrust of establishment Republicans has been well earned by them for over 40 years.

That's a reasonable reaction to easily observable facts. However, going after nearly all conservatives as "America's Vichy con Right", as you have done, is not constructive and reeks of "tin foil hat" rantings.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have NOT gone after all nearly conservatives -or PJM writers - mostly just the fanatical NSAnik crowd and those who've indicated they'll do anything for a .mil or .gov paycheck. The War Street Journal and anyone still foolish enough to subscribe to the Weekly War Standard and National NSA Review are going to have a hard time spinning their own ticked off readership too on Big Brother's behalf.

Western Rifle Shooters Association isn't my blog. But things are about to get a whole lot more 'tinfoil' in 2014. And the genuine conservatives are going to be separated from the RINO, Surveillance State worshipping goats who all claim they support the 2nd Amendment when the NSA's illegal domestic gun registry goes public.

As for some of the names I mentioned, let's just say I have a strong feeling their role as NSA mouthpieces is going to become news in 2014.
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Women. Can't live with them. Can't live without them" -- to quote a line from that hilarious 1980s South African movie "The Gods Must Be Crazy".

This is not in the same category of female wrong-doing as a German woman shooting starving frightened Jewish children, but among the other evils that women have perpetrated is the violation of Tolkien's "Hobbit".

A New Zealand woman writer, plus her nancified director husband, decided that Tolkien's story was just too overwhelmingly -- Male! What did she expect from a bedtime story Tolkien wrote for his young sons? Well, the movie version of the Hobbit (Part 2 of 3) had to be rewritten to include the standard feminist Hunger Games type "strong" female role -- the kind who is breaking hearts when she is not breaking arms. Goodbye Tolkien!

The late lamented Whiskey used to point out that TV had become a female ghetto. That medium has almost totally lost the 50% male component of its potential audience (sports excepted). Now movies seem to be going the same way, even when they start with a well-written story.

The only joy is knowing that at some point -- maybe not so far in the future -- all those "strong female" roles will seem as antiquated as the cowboy roles which used to dominate movies. Big wheel keeps on turning. I just wish it would turn a little faster.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Whiskey didn't know the half of it. Due to my wife's profound disability I'm around the house most of the time these days and she watches a lot of TV. From about 10:00 AM on it is the most irritating chain of ''talk'' shows and ''reality'' shows, the former featuring audiences clapping, jumping, and screaming like a bunch of puppets, I honestly think in response to a sign or something that says, ''Now jump, scream, and shout'' every thirty seconds.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
The other day there was some TV news panel and some guy was decrying the lack of female role models for gilrs in fiction.

I nearly needed Obamacare's Death Panels. From Pocohontas to Mulan to ancient female archers to Xena to modern female fighter pilots and SEAL members, there are now MORE strong female role models than there are male ones The fact that most of these are about as realistic as a Kung Fu Panda does not stop anyone from producing more. It is even a stereotype for a strong female to save the hapless males.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
The most popular script book in Hollywood these days is the strong female and the otherwise flawed and helpless male, "Castle" and "Bones" and the like, or when the try for a tad more versimilitude just the tech guru is female, as on "NCIS" and "Criminal Minds". All I can say is, 'yeah right'.

This of course follows on the Morgan Freeman age, in which a sonorous black man is the ultimate in knowledge and empathy, and we know how that ended up.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
They'd already expanded Arwen's role in LOTR - and almost expanded it much more, presumably for the same reasons. For that matter they also nancified Aragorn in the movie, it's a wonder he wasn't wearing red plaid pj's. For that matter they may make Galadriel a warrior princess in the third hobbit episode, I haven't heard exactly what they're doing but they are filling in unwritten events (mentioned in the books but not in detail), and in LOTR after the ring is destroyed apparently ... ok, enough already.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Back in the 60's, when I was in graduate school, I was daily exposed to the SDS and their ravings. The group was subdivided into factions: Stalinists, Maoists, Trotskyites and those who could not make up their minds. All shared a common hatred for all things American. And, utter contempt for ordinary Americans. All spent their time together yelling at each other about incomprehensible points of doctrine. The women in the group screamed the loudest. None had the slightest sense of humor. None were intelligent - aside from the ability to master points of incomprehensible doctrine. Hate is what they all lived for. Psychotic, the lot of them.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
If you can find 'em look up the news photos of the integration of the high school in Little Rock. The most vicious facial expressions--and, we were told, language--came from the women surrounding the black kids.

Also: there was a helluva photo of an airborne guy who'd just buttstroked a civilian, who had a bloody gash on his forehead. The expression on the troop's face I'll never forget. Supposedly the civ had tried to take away his rifle.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
The female Weathermen wore the pants. Little wonder they went on to perpetuate their politics through women's studies departments and lesbian/pseudo-lesbian prison activism -- while the men glommed onto the execrable men's movement. And that offers a disturbing portent: if Bill Ayers and his fascist-in-earth-shoes-anti-masculinity is the sort of urtext for Pajamas Boy, then we are about to be treated to a great deal of viciousness from both (or rather all) sexes of this political stripe.

The only thing as awful as mannish violence perpetrated by female leftists is feminine violence perpetrated by the emasculated male ones.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
My experience with political types in the late 60's and early 70's was precisely the same. The mental masturbation of those types - smugly congratulating themselves on how much they understood and could debate the fine distinctions and shadings of hatred embodied in their doctrines...was STAGGERING. Otherwise, they were useless as human beings, almost to a person, lacking in human graces and any discernible empathy for others.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
... and now they're running the country.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
A quickie this time: Wretch mentions Jose Marie Sison. "JOMA" in the Filipino vernacular.

A child of privilege----and college professor------he has dedicated his life to producing psychopaths using egalialtarian ideology as his camoflauging justification.

He is in severe need of a suspended sentence. By the neck. Until deceased.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
The late Gordon Dickson spent some time differentiating between the Man of Faith and the fanatic.

Faith is an essential element of species survival. (Gordy's ultimate "Friendly" bore an uncanny resemblance to Whittaker Chambers).

A fanatic lacks faith. This fact makes it impossible for him or her to accept the reality of their personal mortality. Then he or she cannot escape noticing that the species will continue after their demise and do so because of those who have what they lack. When that recognition----conciious or subconcious--------occurs there is a short window in which the faithless can either acquire faith and thereby clean up his or her act or set forth on the path that leads to mass murder/genocide/speicies extinction.

How many of them go which way must remain a matter of conjecture. However the damage done by the latter course iw well-documented.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
If fanatics lack faith, then how to explain Islam's fanatics?

A fanatic lacks humility, they have faith in the certainty of their ideology.

“A fanatic is a man who does, what he knows God would do . . . if only God had all the facts of the matter” Finley Peter Dunne
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
About 0200, 26 February 1852, the iron hulled paddle wheel steamer HMS Birkenhead, carrying soldiers and their families to South Africa for the Xhosa War, struck a rock off Cape Town and sank. The women and children were put in the three remaining lifeboats, while the men, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Seton of the 74th Regiment of Foot, assembled in ranks on the deck. Fearing that hundreds of men leaving the sinking ship would endanger the women and children in the lifeboats, Seton set his men to doing close order drill while the ship sank beneath them. Obama probably never heard of HMS Birkenhead, and such courage and gallantry would have only made him sneer, but he is attempting his own version of the Birkenhead Drill, ordering the Democrats to stand firm while the ship sinks beneath them.

In the darkness off a rocky shore
Obama’s ship has struck
Taking all aboard her down
If we have any luck

43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Tyrants may use intellectuals, women, and the earnest – the classic Iconodules of Byzantium – but those same tyrants all too often become the puppets of their followers. Once they fail to be perceived as living up to the standards of the fanatics, such tyrants lose their power. Remember Shabbatai Zevi – he was proclaimed to the Messiah and he lived up to everything Jews dreamed of at the time. That is, until he converted to Islam. Yes, his alternative was death. Yet, had he chosen death, he would have been revered to this day by most Jews throughout the world. As it was, Shabbatai Zevi became the greatest embarrassment that any faith has ever had.

One group of Jews – Shabbateans – claimed that to be true Jews, Jews had to falsely convert to another religion. This led to Jews erasing Shabbateans off their family trees. It also freaked out Lutherans and Catholics, who were faced a flood a false converts who wanted the label of Christian but not the belief system or the customs. It led to predictable conspiracy theories that have dogged Judaism ever since.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Mormon concept of “celestial marriage” creeps me out. Polygamy isn't the problem. It isn't even the idea that one might be married to one's spouse past death. No, it is the idea that one must get married to go to Heaven – that creeps me out.

I sometimes wonder if the Jewish – and, by extension, Christian – reaction against temple prostitution was to dissuade pious women from corrupting prostitution with their fanaticism. The idea of a woman who sold sex for money was a commonly accepted practice in antiquity, but the idea of a woman who would use “pity sex” or “charity sex” as a means to assert control over men – that was regarded with horror. Imagine the kind of woman who would otherwise be a nun working as a prostitute – not for money, but as a charitable and “sacred” service. Such a woman would never consider selling sex for money, but raising money for “The Cause” would be seen as sacred.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thank you, Richard, once again! Eye-opening material, especially for a Sunday.

2 weeks ago I pulled Ann Coulter's "Demonic" off the shelf for a re-read, and it couldn't have been more timely. Her subtitle is "How the Liberal Mob is Endangering America." Groupthink, mob dynamics and the mob mentality explain much of what is discussed here. It has been so for a century or two. The liberal/democrat/progressive wing of each of these countries drives it. Conservative folk stand for reason and peace (and for understanding man well enough to have enough strength to enforce reason and peace).
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
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