Not So Strange Hate

[Note: My first ZNet article appeared on March 11, 1999. Then, four years and three months ago, in January 2016, I ‘disappeared’ from the ZNet. In case some people noticed the absence, here is the explanation: Aspasia, my companion, is 85.  I am 90. Aspasia has been in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s since January 2016, which explains the reason for my absence. These four years and three months I have been walking daily to the nursing home, a walk of about one hour, to feed her. Aspasia is in good condition, but I am the one that benefited from the daily walk. I feel strong and fit, because of it. End of Note]


Raimund  Pretzel was born in Berlin in 1907. In 1938, at the age of 31, he left Germany and emigrated to Britain because he could not stand the Nazis, he had ‘a sizeable circle of Jewish friends’ and because Erika, his companion, was considered Jewish, although ‘her grandparents had converted to Christianity’. In Britain he changed his name to Sebastian Haffner and started writing in English as a journalist and as ahistorian. Sebastian is the middle name of Johann Sebastian Bach and Haffner was taken from the title of a work by Mozart. Haffner ‘returned to Germany with his family in the 1950s’. He died in 1999.

In 1978 he published a book in German with the title ‘Anmerkungen zu Hitler’ [Notes on Hitler]. In 1979 a translation in English was published with the title ‘The Meaning of Hitler’. (The parts in quotations in the preceding paragraphs come from the Introduction to the Folio edition of 2011.)

Haffner had a very rare quality as a human. He was honest. As I translate the word ‘honest’ it means to be honest in your ‘acts’ but also to be honest in your ‘thinking’. As a young man I discovered that when you try to solve a problem in mathematics, e.g. in Geometry, sometimes you catch yourself trying to solve the problem by using a false hypothesis or a false math law. Also, your mind chastises you for being dishonest. This means that dishonesty is a hidden part of thinking in our mind.

The books on Hitler are more than enough. However, the writers of all these books did not search the core of Hitler’s inner self as Haffner did. The result of this search can be expressed by a single word. Hate. But according to Haffner, here is the rather ‘strange’ object of hating by Hitler: The German people! [German ‘volk’, in the Nazi parlance].

The aims of Hitler were: one to rule the planet and two to exterminate the Jews. According to Haffner , the historian, the date of December 5, 1941 is probably one the most significant dates in human history. He writes, that was ‘the day when the Russian offensive at Moscow rudely awakened him (Hitler) from his dreams of victory in Russia’ (p.140).

In December of the year 1941 I was 10 years old. I remember exactly what the life of the Greeks in the Nazi occupied Athens was. That very December a few hundred thousands of Greeks died in Athens of hunger and cold. And I remember exactly that the proud German soldiers were having a happy life as occupiers of Athens. As my high school, the 8th High School of Athens, a huge building of three stories, that had even a theater on the third floor and a church in the huge yard, was full of Nazi soldiers. For the first year of occupation, 1941, they allowed us to hold classes in the basement of the building and we could see the Nazis in the yard.

It took me close to a century, at the age of 90, to realize, with the help of Haffner, that the happy Nazi soldiers I was watching and their families were doomed as Hitler had decided on December 5, 1941 that ‘if Germany could not be victorious it might as well perish, he (Hitler) would not shed any tears about it’ (p. 140). As a matter of fact for the next three years and a half, after December 5, 1941, to his end he revealed ‘an often unimpaired self- satisfaction and at times even robust merriment’ (p. 142). His hate for the German ‘volk’ was infinite.

All he did was to drag America into the war and fight as much as he could in the West while letting the Russians to easily enter Germany from the East, so that the German ‘volk’ could suffer the most.

‘Hitler has always been a great hater and derived much inward pleasure from killing’ and this hatred ‘was now was now openly turning against Germans’ (p. 150).

[Parenthesis: Aspasia, a blond with blue eyes, has a member in her family who lives in Germany. This man unearthed in the Munich area that an ancestor of hers came to Greece during the mid-nineteenth century and that is where the roots on her father’s side came from.‘Hitler’s written order for the mass-killing of invalids in Germany bears the date of

1 September 1939, the date of the outbreak of war…seventy thousand to eighty thousand patients in medical and in nursing institutions (p. 130, emphasis added)’ were killed. Fortunately, if I were to tell this to Aspasia she would not understand. End of the Parenthesis]

This is year 2020 of our Lord! Can one say today that Donald Trump can be a man of “strange” hate? That is, that Trump hates the American people?

Let us try to find out:

Is Trump an honest Person? A great number of people tell us, through the The New York Times (even Nobelists among them) that he is not.

Does Trump hate some people, in general? He is proud to fervently hate immigrants (the Jews of our time). He also hates “shitty” countries, black, brown, red, and yellow people. Especially, he hates the children of these people.

Does Trump hate dictators?

Of course not!

Does Trump hate Roy Cohn?

This is a blasphemous question! Trump is the sacred remnants of Roy Cohn’s soul on this planet. [Note : It is about time that honest people in the American Universities start educating the young people of America about the relationship of Roy Cohn and Trump. End of Note]

So, can Trump harbor a “strange” hate for the Americans?

Yes he can!

Maybe he already does

1 comment

  1. Martin Ray May 13, 2020 1:04 pm 

    Dear Sir, I started to read Znet acouple of years before you stopped writing. And yes, I noticed your absence. I enjoyed your articles and comments. I’m amazed to read your age. Good health to you and yours, especially in these times. Long may you continue to comment. Martin

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