The left is obsessed with mining through history to re-evaluate the legacies of men and women who did not have the benefit of living in our “woke” age of social enlightenment. If they’re not tearing down Confederate statues, they’re complaining about murals of George Washington. If they’re not ripping up paintings of Christopher Columbus, they’re trying to get Andrew Jackson removed from the $20 bill. And in a Washington Post article of almost startling stupidity this week, history professor John Broich turns this revisionist eye on the heroes of World War II, claiming they “failed” us by not framing the war against Nazis in explicitly anti-racist terms.
For the love of sanity, make it stop.
From the Washington Post:
While Allied countries opposed the Nazis and Allied troops defeated them, the leaders of the United States and Britain rarely attacked the core tenet of Nazism: the belief in a master race.
In my World War II class recently, I had my students pore through the speeches and letters of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill from the years around the war’s start in 1939, searching for his basis for opposing the Nazis. They found Churchill wanted to stand up to the Nazis’ expansionism, fight their anti-democracy posture and resist what he called (but largely left undefined) their anti-Christianity. What he did not do, however, was call for the destruction of the essence of Nazism: race supremacy.
As it’s once again on the ascent across the globe, this historian imagines where we might be today had the Allies fought on the basis of eliminating the racial supremacy of the Germans (and, in their variation, the Japanese). What if that principle had been, through the greatest global struggle of humankind, woven into our social DNA?
Wonder no more, historian. There would still be neo-Nazis. There would still be white nationalists. There would still be people walking around thinking that Hitler was a hero. Those people – tribal and racial supremacists – have been around since the earliest days of recorded history and they will be here when the sun winks out of the sky. Only left-wingers have this idealistic, naïve hope that they can change the way things are. Yes, cosmetic changes are possible. Yes, you can stand up and fight when confronted with a mad dictator. Yes, you can tailor your laws to see that they reflect society’s values.
But you cannot change essential human nature. You cannot change the fact that some people are good and some people are bad. We live now in a time of unprecedented peace and prosperity, and we owe the leaders and soldiers who fought bravely in World War II an enormous debt for that gift.
It won’t last forever. There is always another conqueror around the bend. We should worry less about the squishy-gooshy dream of weaving “the elimination of racial supremacy” into our social DNA and more about being prepared to stop them.