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Sunday, May 28, 2006

a german story

I like to talk to Germans with regards to the war and Hitler and the likes. A few months ago when holidaying in Germany, I met an old man who lived through the war and told the story of the war through his eyes. Then, one Friday, I had a chat with a German colleague of mine, also with regards to the war. As you can imagine, I got two very different stories.


With regards to Hitler :

Old man says : Great man......He united Germany, he built the AutoBahn, he drastically reduced unemployment. Yes, he was crazy, but in which war, past and present did people not die?

Young man says : He built the AutoBahn and reduced unemployment by forcing people to work there. He would throw them in jail if they refused. And killing 6 million Jews just for the heck of it is NOT the effect of every war.


With regards to 6 million Jews :

Old man says : RUBBISH! All propaganda. That figure is no where near as close to that.

Young man says : Maybe 6 million is pushing it. The figure might have been closer to 5 and the half million.


With regards to propaganda :

Old man says : Kids these days are fed with rubbish. The winners write the history books. Everything they learnt in school was written by the British and the French.

Young man says : Old people still believe the propaganda spread by Hitler. They refuse to come to terms with what really happened.


With regards to coming to terms and admitting their mistakes:

Old man says : The war was not started when Hitler invaded Poland. It was started when the British and the French forced us to sign the Versailles treaty after World War I. They were the ones who started the war. The government see the situation with Japan and Asia and they are trying to avoid it, so, they will throw you in jail if you dispute the fact that 6 million Jews were slaughtered and that the war was Hitler's fault. The blame is to be shared by Germany, America, Russia, Britain and France!

Young man says : We should learn from our mistakes and own up when we do something wrong. Hitler is long gone, and nobody cares already. It is time to move on.




So you see, in every story, like I told you the other day, there are THREE sides to a coin. In this case, it would be the story of the old man, the young man, and myself - the person bringing you this story in the first place. I try to be objective, but as I might have subconsiously favoured with one of the above parties.

The thing is, when you hear a piece of news, you tend to believe what you want to believe. The old man says the young people have been brainwashed by the government while the young man claims the old people were brainwashed by Hitler long ago.

As far as history goes, it is well known that the winners write the books, the powerful paint an ugly picture of the losers. So who do you believe? Who should you believe?

More importantly, though, is the question of "Who do you WANT to believe?"

Labels: ,


Ramblings:
Whereabouts is our "first hand experience" commenter to tell us what it was really like in Europe during the 30s and 40s?

Not enough people seem to realise that the world is as it is only because the Allies won in 1945. If results had been reversed, we'd all be sprechen sie deustche-ing or speaking nippon hai or something like that.

Moral of the story? The winner takes all, whilst the loser opens a hate-blog on the internet.

 



Quite interesting there!
But of course we do learn something from it...

 



I was just about to ask about the "first hand experiencers" but Tigerjoe beat me to it =P

Anyway, heard about the theory...the one where movies were made to make a country look bad so everyone would perceive it to be that way? So then the one who benefits from it would be able to break big ass countries up.

 



this is a very good entry dude.
 



... and if you want to learn German, watch F1 on Astro and you will be able to speak like them :)
 



This is very well put.
 



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