Could Punching Nazis Have Prevented Hitler From Taking Power? | Counter Punch

by Faiz Ahmed last modified 2017-09-08T23:10:00-04:00
"Ever since Charlottesville, I have seen repeated references to how Nazism could have been stopped by street-fighting with almost no attention paid to the concrete socio-political conditions of Germany between 1920 and 1933, when Hitler took power. For many of those who think that physical force was the key to stopping Nazism, the viral video of Richard Spencer getting punched in the face was far more important as a guide to action than understanding the tragic history of the German left. ... In the final analysis, it was a perfect storm of reformism and ultraleft sectarianism that allowed Hitler to come to power, not an absence of street-fighting. Even when Hitler was close to coming to power, the two working class parties failed to unite their militias into a single fighting force. They were the proverbial deer caught in a headlight. ... If the left had prevailed in 1933, the world would have been spared WWII, the holocaust and likely the collapse of the USSR. Stalin would have been undermined because in the absence of a Nazi invasion, he would have had less of an ability to cultivate the reputation of a defender of the Motherland. We also would have been spared the invention of nuclear weapons that only became a reality after Einstein convinced Roosevelt that their development was necessary. ... The most urgent task today, as it was in the 1920s, is to create a left party that can speak in the name of working people and that will eventually be massive enough to take power. Hopefully, this will cost the lives of no more than those that were lost on the day the Bolsheviks took power in one of the most peaceful social revolutions in human history."

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