Die Dolchstosslegende

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

The stab-in-the-back legend (German: Dolchstosslegende (help·info), literally “Dagger stab legend”) refers to a social myth and persecution-propaganda theory popular in Germany in the period after World War I through World War II. It attributed Germany’s defeat to a number of domestic factors instead of failed militarist geostrategy. Most notably, the theory proclaimed that the public had failed to respond to its “patriotic calling” at the most crucial of times and some had even intentionally “sabotaged the war effort.”

The legend echoed the epic poem Nibelungenlied in which the dragon-slaying hero Siegfried is stabbed in the back by Hagen von Tronje. Der Dolchstoss is cited as an important factor in Adolf Hitler’s later rise to power, as the Nazi Party grew its original political base largely from embittered World War I veterans, and those who were sympathetic to the Dolchstosslegende interpretation of Germany’s then-recent history. – Wikipedia

For those of you unfamiliar with this blood libel the melody goes kinda like this-

We were winning our war of aggression until those Jews dirty fucking hippies meddling kids stabbed us in the back.

What makes it blood libel is the implication that people who were against the war and saw the utimate futility of it “sacrificed” the blood of our brave soldiers for nothing as if to have “sacrificed” it to a real God like Mars or Mammon were any better.

Once you put your money in the pot boys, it’s gone.  I could so kick your ass at poker.

It’s hardly surprising that the American Theo-Corporatist Party is resurrecting this meme and their Presidential nominee is endorsing it-

(Glenn Greenwald below)

John McCain’s Vietnam-based view of war

Glenn Greenwald, Salon

Monday May 12, 2008 07:21 EDT

Former Army Captain and military analyst Phillip Carter writes today in his Washington Post blog of the “stabbed in the back narrative” of Vietnam in the context of a new book advancing that narrative by Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, commander of coalition forces during the disastrous 2003-2004 period when, among other things, the Abu Ghraib abuses occurred. That narrative, says Carter, “is popular among American military officers of a certain age, who believe if only they’d had gutsy political leadership, support from the homefront, and a willingness to steamroll North Vietnam with overwhelming force, we might have won the war.” As Carter documents (emphasis in original): “It’s a good story, but it’s wrong. No amount of America firepower could have crushed the North Vietnamese people’s will.”

That’s the very embodiment of the “stabbed-in-the-back” Vietnam narrative. We had our greatest success when we could bomb North Vietnam “not constrained by either congressional or presidential mandate.” That’s when we almost brought them “to their knees.” But incessant complaints about civilian casualties and anger over irrelevant matters such as the bombing of hospitals is what prevented us from winning — “which still angers him,” because the number of dead North Vietnamese wasn’t really “exorbitant.” There was room for plenty more. Ponder what that means for Iraq, Afghanistan and any other new countries on which a President McCain decides to wage war.

McCain also warned that “we need a constructive domestic debate” and that those who were opposing the war were being “irresponsible”: “We must show bipartisan resolve to prevail in Iraq, and not allow the insurgents to believe that they are winning minds in Washington. Our troops, the Iraqi people, and the world need to see unified American political leadership.”

It’s hard to overstate how pervasive this mindset was and is among the Pentagon leadership over the last seven years. In fact, the 8,000 pages of documents which the New York Times forced the Pentagon to release concerning its “military analyst” program is suffuse with arguments of this type concerning both Vietnam and Iraq. It was that mentality which spawned the domestic propaganda campaign.

John McCain is the ultimate embodiment of America’s hoary, Vietnam era “stabbed-in-the-back” myth. We should fight wars with massive bombing campaigns and unleashed force, unconstrained by excessive concerns over “collateral damage” and unimpeded by domestic questioning. That’s how we could have (and should have) “won” in Vietnam and how we’ll “win” in Iraq. That’s why the central truth of the 2008 election is that, when it comes to foreign policy, the Kristol/Lieberman-supported John McCain is a carbon copy of the Bush/Cheney warmongering mentality except that he’s actually more extreme about its core premises.


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  1. I’m thinking about crossposting this.  What do you think?

  2. well at about 7:30 pm then unless I am scooped.  That way I can post whore and maybe catch the eye of my pm audience.

    If I wasn’t doing OND tomorrow I’d get up early because 7 am – 8 am is reclist time.

  3. If so, does he intent to take Shinseki’s counsel that several hundred thousand troops are needed?

    McCain needs to be squeezed on this issue HARD.  If he thinks he has a path to victory (very doubtful), and if it requires doubling the current resource level (at least), that’s gotta be the definition of a non-starter.

    If you want to learn something about the history of insurgent warfare, Van Creveld’s The Changing Face of War is pretty interesting.

    Basically, in all of human history, only a couple of counterinsurgencies have proved “successful.”  One, the peace between Britain and Northern Ireland, has been credited to treating insurgency as a police action to be handled by local law enforcement.  Once the British (against all instincts) worked hard to avoid military response, the local government was able to develop a better trust relationship and the people started turning against the insurgents.  One  should note that this matter took many many years and cost many many lives.  I don’t know that I’d call it a victory myself, but the people have enjoyed relative peace for some time now.

    The other, in Syria, did involve overwhelming force and the near complete destruction of a city.  President Assad crushed the Hama uprising in 1982, with 10000-25000 killed, many more maimed, the mosque of the city reduced to rubble (and eventually turned into a parking lot).

    If this is McCain’s strategy, people need to hear it loudly and frequently.  

    EK, I say post! post! post!

  4. That somehow during WWII if we had just kept going right through Germany and attacked the USSR that the Cold War never would have happened…?

    And that somehow whatever the consequences of that action (which no one contemplates, of course – in this mythology the end result is unicorns frolicking on the beaches) it would have been better than sticking with the plan of not attacking the sovereignty of one of our allies?

    Here’s an idea: why doesn’t the US just invade the whole friggin’ planet (outside of Canada, Japan Australia and Europe with the possible exception of France)?

    Then we could solve all of our problems and think of all of the job growth due to the increased amount of spending on defense contractors… /snark

  5. if buhdy promoted this, then there must be a rec button. but i don’t see it.

    so here’s a mental rec, ek………………….

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