History lesson: the breakup of Yugoslavia

I’ve been listening to many political Youtube video clips recently and a recurring theme among the pro-Russian and anti-NATO speakers seems to be that NATO bombardment of Serbia was an act of vile aggression and the breakup of Yugoslavia was somehow American fault.

This motivates me to write my own personal account of the breakup of Yugoslavia from the position of someone who lived through this period, and whose family members were the refugees from the war; I think this makes me significantly more qualified than the guys who watched this all on TV somewhere in Europe or America.

One of the problems that I face in an attempt to convey my perception of the situation is the immense richness of history of this part of the world. In almost every village here in Croatia there’s a church that dates from at least the 15th century – that’s a hundred years before Isaac Newton. For instance, in a suburban village near Zagreb, where I live at the moment, the church was built in 1476th, and guess what, it was the new church, built on the spot of the older church from 1276th, which was built in place of an even older wooden chapel, dating all the way back to the year 1076. That’s 939 years of history of that one small village, which is not nearly the oldest thing here, because in Split, the Emperor Diocletian’s palace and the aqueducts are still in use, continually, since the Roman empire. There was never a discontinuity of history. People still use the Roman arena in Pula for purposes very similar to the original ones. The art festivals that took place during the times when the Republic of Dubrovnik was a medieval independent state still take place, the Alka of Sinj, established in medieval times to commemorate a battle with the Turks, still takes place. We have local customs so ancient in origin, they probably date all the way to the last ice age, or at least to early Holocene period. The ancient pre-Christian religion of this region is Vedic-Aryan in origin, and its religious topography was recycled by Christianity by building churches on the spots of the ancient temples. A thought crossed my mind – take a look at the Witcher series of videogames, the medieval-themed thing, or the Game of Thrones series, which is actually recorded in Croatia (guess why). People dressed like that, with spears and swords, believing in dragons and monsters, actually lived here, and Roman emperors were born and lived here, and even older Roman and Greek settlements exist here, on top of the stone age settlements, on top of the caves in which the Neanderthals lived. There is a continuity of 125 thousands of years of human habitation in this very area. Here, history spans across geological epochs, and some of it still exists in the most ancient of customs. The Vučedol culture is contemporary with the Sumer period of Mesopotamia and early dynastic period of Egypt. When I say we have history here, I mean we have history that is so old, that it’s among the oldest of any human culture or civilization, surpassed only by the Leakey findings in Olduvai Gorge, Africa. Essentially, this place doesn’t remember the times when people lived on the trees, but it remembers the times when they lived in caves, hunting a wooly rhinoceros.

Why am I making this lengthy introduction? Because to us, the Turks were on our borders and preparing an invasion of Vienna yesterday. The Roman emperors Trajan and Diocletian were here here day before yesterday, and somewhat earlier than that people were making human sacrifices to the Great Mother. On the edge of our known timeline, the Neanderthals were hiding from winter in Vindija cave. The Neanderthal genome project got their finest DNA sample from us. We are not a new people, a new country or a new nation. Our people were thrown to the lions by the Romans and we still remember their names. The chessboard shield decorates the medieval churches here. The chessboard shield was the constituent of the shield of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Empress Maria Theresia was the sovereign of Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Bohemia, Mantua, Milan, Lodomeria and Galicia, the Austrian Netherlands and Parma. We are not some shitty little country created with the breakup of Yugoslavia, we are among the oldest on Earth, the cornerstone of European civilization. Europe might have forgotten this, but this is a normal part of life here, being surrounded by ruins and buildings so ancient, that Chinese tourists drool all over the place with their cameras, unable to believe that this all actually exists in reality and not only in some history-themed movie or a video game. I cannot start from the beginning, because our beginning goes back to the beginnings of human existence in Eurasia. I will have to start somewhere more recent: with the Turkish occupation of Serbia in 1389. This is where the serious trouble started, deeply marking the Serbian national identity to the point where nothing before or since matters to them. The Kosovo battle was a draw, but Serbia lost its entire army and the Turks just came back with a new one and overran them. The Turks impaled men and raped women. A significant part of the Serbian genome (20%) is Anatolian haplogroup. The Serbs had the misfortune of being close to Turkey, and were thus overran and raped as a nation; the Turks are still remembered as the worst of pests in these areas, something subhuman in its cruelty and viciousness. Unlike the Serbs, who were hit early, the Croatians, Romanians and Hungarians had time to prepare – especially the Croatians. The Turks still remember us as their most vicious enemies, and we gave them such scars they will never forget. In the process, the soldiers of the “military region” of Croatia, the “vojna krajina”, were the most vicious, best trained, most cruel military force on Earth during that time. Napoleon recruited the members of his personal guard among them, and they were the scourge of the Earth.

We saw the Serbs as a brotherly nation. We gave their refugees land in Lika and Mountain Shire (Gorski Kotar) to make their homes there. We protected them from the Turks, and celebrated their victories and eventual liberation as if it were our own. We did not see the Serbs, Montenegrins, Bosnians and Croatians as separate ethnicities, because that didn’t mean anything at the time. There were the Christians, and there were the Turks. Croatians were deeply sympathetic to Serbs and their suffering under the Turks, to the point where panslavism was extremely popular among the intellectual elites here in Zagreb, prior to the first world war, and, and when Serbia freed itself, they were dreaming of being “liberated” themselves, from the union with Austria and Hungary, which they perceived as stifling the Slavic identity of Croatia – essentially, they were planing a common state of all southern-Slavic nations, and this weird surge of nationalism and separatism actually contributed to the downfall of the Austro-Hungarian empire. The Serbs, on their side, had a different agenda. Having liberated themselves from the Turks, they saw all Slavic Christians as Serbs that need to be incorporated into a Great Serbia, which is why they assassinated the Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the world war. When the war ended, the Croatian slavist intellectuals ran straight to the Serbs and proposed the formation of the new state of the Slovenians, Croatians and Serbs, which the Serbs accepted, but with completely different ideas in mind. Somehow, the Serbs got it into their heads that they “won” those territories in the war, and started treating them as conquered lands, gravely abusing the trust vested in them by the Croatian political elites. This went so far, that the vehemently pro-Slavic political trends in the Austro-Hungarian Croatia gave way to the genocidal anti-Serb policies of Ante Pavelić and his “Ustaše” movement, which eventually made an alliance with Hitler and committed great crimes against Serbs, Jews and all political misfits.

One needs to stop here and think how badly the Serbs must have fucked up in order to turn the Croatians from deep sympathy and compassion for the Serbs, to a vicious genocidal hate. But, the second world war started here, and the only organized opposition to the German and Italian occupying forces and their quislings was the communist party under Josip Broz Tito, which managed to hold its own during the war, and after the Nazis withdrew, together with their pathetic servants, they remained as the only force standing and proceeded to butcher the quislings and everyone else they didn’t particularly like. The crimes they committed against the civilian population after the war were at least as great as the crimes committed by the Ustaše and other quisling forces during the war, and the only righteous part of the population were the civilian victims of both criminal gangs in question. Tito rebuilt Yugoslavia as a communist state, first according to Stalin’s Soviet design, but later went his own way, parted with the Soviet model of government and created a state that was halfway between the Warsaw pact and NATO, in both way of life and political alignment. In fact, he and his foreign allies, Nasser, Nehru and Sukarno, formed the core of the non-aligned movement, which grew to include all the countries that were tired of the bloc policies of the cold war. In the early 1970s, the first signs of trouble started as some Croatian intellectuals started making waves about how Croatian culture and language were drowned under the Serbian-centric rule from Belgrade, and how money from Croatian tourism was unjustly distributed across Yugoslavia and didn’t sufficiently benefit Croatia. Tito resolved the matter by arresting all the troublemakers and throwing away the key, and then basically did everything they requested, at least formally. Zagreb was made the cultural and intellectual capital of Yugoslavia, while Belgrade remained the administrative and military center. The money continued to flow to Belgrade first.

After Tito’s death, inertia carried Yugoslavia along quite nicely, with only occasional stirrings of trouble. After all, Yugoslavia was rather well off, as communist states go. In science, technology and prosperity, it didn’t lag all that much behind the West, if at all, but the common themes of inefficient, ailing economy, and belligerent Serbian nationalism under Slobodan Milošević became troubling. Serbia intended to promote centralization of everything under Serbian rule, which Croatia, as the second most powerful constituent opposed, because Croatians never really understood why they would let themselves be ruled by the Serbs, since they had more advanced industry, earned most of the federal budget by tourism, and had actually lead the communist resistance movement during the second world war; in fact, they liberated Serbia, not the other way around, and the Serbs really joined the partisan movement only when the war was already over.

I don’t know what exactly happened behind the curtains slightly before and during the year 1990, but it seems that the political elites in the Croatian communist party decided that Yugoslavia is doomed, that Milošević will ride the beast of Serbian national myths and basically transform Yugoslavia into the Great Serbia, and sought to form viable opposition to that trend on the Croatian side, choosing Franjo Tuđman as the most suitable candidate. He won the first democratic elections, and proceeded to transform Croatia into a viable state, with separate finances, army and all. What decided the course of events were, essentially, two things. First, Tito formed the Yugoslav People’s Army as a Serb-lead force, to appease the Serbian heroic myth, like he appeased the Croatian cultural myth by giving them control of the Yugoslav encyclopedic society and other important cultural institutions. Milošević quickly came to an agreement with the Serbian generals, who agreed to militarily quench the separatist movements in Slovenia and Croatia. Second, Lawrence Eagleburger, American secretary of state under Bush Sr., went to Belgrade and apparently gave the Serbs American blessing for their plan of quickly ending the separatist movement in the republics, and when the Yugoslav Army started its military activities, an arms embargo was imposed to “all sides”, which basically meant that the Serbs had all the weapons in the world except the nukes, and Croatians had what they could steal from the Serbs and buy on the black market. Still, Croatians managed to hold their own, losing only the part of the territory that was populated by the Serbs and held by the Army, and managed to lose only Vukovar while inflicting grave losses to the JNA. The Serbian failure to end the Croatian rebellion showed the “international community” that Yugoslavia was doomed and could not be healed, and the separatist republics were internationally recognized as sovereign states.

Serbia then proceeded to “ethnically cleanse” Bosnia, meaning, to draw some arbitrary line among the ethnicities and kill all the non-Serbs on the “Serbian” side. Croatians held their own well, but the Muslims were not prepared for the war, neither militarily nor psychologically, and had poor leadership. The “international community” continually misrepresented the conflict and mostly just encouraged the Serbs by their lack of decisive action or clear attitude, and most actually favored the Serbs, since all the Yugoslav diplomats were appointed from Belgrade and formed a positive attitude towards the Serbs and negative attitudes towards the Croatians in their host countries. This lead to the expectations that Croatians cannot match the Serbs militarily and allowed the Serbs to control most of the narrative, which slightly changed only as news of the slaughters of Vukovar, concentration camps in Bosnia and mass executions of Srebrenica leaked into the world, but matters changed significantly when Croatians, having used the hiatus to arm themselves, had enough of that shit and destroyed the Serbs militarily in Croatia and proceeded to hand them their ass in Bosnia. That’s when America finally intervened and brokered the Dayton accord, which allowed Croatia to retain its territorial integrity, while Bosnia was split into Serbian and Muslim-Croatian entities. Things would have ended there, but the Serbs apparently just needed to kill people to feel good about themselves, so they proceeded to exterminate the Albanians in their ancient historical province of Kosovo, and only when they made it apparent they would spill the conflict into Macedonia, which could then spill further, Americans decided that they had enough of Serbs and started bombing the shit out of them, until the Serbs finally admitted defeat. America turned Kosovo into their military base, Macedonia was unharmed and the Albanians proceeded to reproduce at a geometrical rate.

So, let’s finally get to the point I initially wanted to make. First, the dissolution of Yugoslavia was not the result of American meddling; however, the Serbian military aggression and an attempt to crush Croatian opposition and reform Yugoslavia as a Great Serbia was in fact directly caused by Eagleburger’s visit of encouragement to Belgrade, and by a huge reluctance in the international community to make it clear to Milošević that his actions are unacceptable. Had America made it clear to him that he’ll end up like Iraq if he tried to solve matters militarily, there never would have been a war here. The Croatians certainly weren’t in a position to wage one, nor did they have any intentions to harm the Serbs in any way; they were just sick of bleeding the tourism money to Belgrade and wanted to try something other than communism. Sure, some hooligans and football fan groups wanted to duke it out with the Serbs, but that would never go beyond minor fistfights. The Serbs started spreading paranoia about Croatians coming to kill them all and started an insurgency in parts of Croatia, but without the military support from Belgrade, that would have ended in a week, with minor casualties and a few arrested leaders. Essentially, what caused the war was the fact that America gave the Serbs a green light to go ahead with a military solution. The fact that America finally saw the light and decided to make it clear to Serbia that their bullshit won’t be tolerated was probably the only good thing they did here, but even that would not have been necessary if they only played it differently in the beginning. The states would have gone their separate ways, but soon would have joined again in some form of a free market union, because their economies were deeply interlinked. There would never have been a military conflict. All would be a part of the European Union by now.

So, essentially, thank you Lawrence Sidney Eagleburger, and thank you George H. W. Bush. Fuck you very, very much.

The problem is, this is not over. The Dayton accord had frozen Bosnia into something inherently ungovernable, and it progressed to degrade economically and culturally to the point where a rupture along at least one of the frozen fault-lines seems inevitable. Also, the Bosnian conflict served to transform the Muslim ethnicity into a more fundamentalist variety of Islam, which might yet end badly. The entire political elite of Bosnia is incompetent and corrupt, and the economy is almost nonexistent, which is bound to explode sooner or later. All former Yugoslav republic are economically crippled, mostly by a combination of transition from communism, loss of the common market, war and corruption, and although I fully supported Croatian independence at the time, I regret that Yugoslavia had to end in such a bad way, and not be reformed into something better by nonviolent means, without Serbs at the steering wheel. The thing with the Serbs is, they suck at governing. They want to rule, to show they are in charge, they want to own others, and that simply doesn’t work with Croatians, who had a history of giving very strong foes a bloody nose, and don’t like anyone to fuck with them. And the joke is, the Croatians didn’t even want to rule Yugoslavia or anything. They just reacted badly to Milošević and his bullshit, which makes me believe that the Serbs need to do some significant soul-searching and redefining of their own national identity before being able to peacefully coexist with others. The Russians see the Serbs as brothers – both Orthodox-Christians, both write in Cyrillic alphabet, stuff like that, but I think they fail to perceive the more profound differences. Russia, despite superficial differences, is more like Croatia in essence: inherently non-aggressive, but never, ever piss it off unless you have a death wish. The Serbs are still butt-sore from the Turkish occupation and appear to cultivate a myth of military strength in some strange inversion of history: the eternal military loser sees itself as the conqueror, who loses in peace but wins in war. Unless the Serbs get over this shit, they will remain a danger to their neighbors. They behave like someone who was butt-fucked in prison for years and then proceeds to act like a super-tough macho badass. The Croatians, however, have a different problem. They see the EU as the substitute for the long-lost beloved Austro-Hungarian empire, which they perceived as their own. Unfortunately, EU proved to be a bitch step-mother to Croatia, and a worthy successor to Yugoslavia in all that is bad.

About Internet payment industry and its aversion to legal due process

I have an extremely heretical idea on how to reform the payment industry.

People should be allowed to pay and receive payment for any kind of goods or services whatsoever, with the sole exception of a proven criminal activity, and by “proven” I mean a valid verdict by a court of law.

Now, I know that this will come as a shock to people, for two different reasons. The majority of people will be shocked because they think they live in a free society and they think this is exactly how things do work today.

The other group are the Nazi scumbags that actually control the payment industry, and who imposed the regulations demanding that every participant in the payment industry polices himself and others, completely outside any form of a legal system, and decide who can be allowed to receive money for goods and services, based on completely arbitrary lists that are based on all kinds of political and religious restrictions. Most of the time it’s cloaked under the guise of “risk aversion”, but honestly, the things that are on those “high risk” lists are in reality among the lowest-risk things you can imagine. I had webshops selling cameras, dating sites, tourist sites renting apartments in vacation resorts, gambling sites, gaming sites and, basically, everything else you can imagine, rejected by the banks as “high risk”, in spite of the fact that “high risk” is defined through probability of incurring a high rate of chargebacks, and that in my entire history of working in the payment industry since 2004, with hundreds of merchants, I only encountered two or three seriously high risk merchants who actually committed fraud and/or produced chargebacks. Essentially, the whole “high risk” concept is a ruse, it’s a deceptive label for something else: imposing American control over the global markets, with questionable goals. Why American? Ask yourselves, who owns the greatest credit-card companies? And that’s where the rules come from.

What I can assure you is that the entire thing is completely extralegal. You can be forbidden from selling goods and services online, and you cannot appeal the decision in any way if you think you had been wronged. If there is any validity to the crypto-currency thing, it is evading this massive project of controlling what people do with their lives and money, silently, extralegally, behind the curtains, without any outsiders being aware.

I understand that someone will say that allowing anyone to receive money for anything will facilitate all sorts of boogeymen, such as terrorism, pedophilia or the famous “money laundering”, but I say it’s bullshit. The real criminals already own the banks and the criminal transactions are whitewashed there into looking so pretty one would never suspect them. Bin Laden successfully financed his projects in spite of all American attempts to suppress him. Rich people launder money with ease. However, if you want to stop such things, you need to resort to conventional investigations and courts, after which blocking the assets never poses a problem. The way to stop terrorists isn’t preventing them from receiving money, it’s arresting both them and those who financially support them. So if those policies intended to suppress online crime, they failed miserably. What they succeeded at at is evading legal methods of fighting crime (because “they don’t work”), and impeding normal economy by banning more than 75% of everything by declaring it “high risk”. I don’t know where those people learned their statistics, but if you’re dealing with 75% of something, it cannot be high risk, because normally you would have a Gaussian distribution of risk and you would have high risk on the extreme right, normal risk in the middle and low risk in the extreme left. If you place 75% of commerce on the extreme right, it means you either just failed at math, or you are hiding some very nefarious political agenda as Basel II risk management. After all, is it so difficult to accept that a court of law should be the only judge of whether something should be allowed or prohibited? And if someone vehemently opposes that, you should look for real criminals at his address. The criminals of the kind that historically used to wear black uniforms, turn their own state into a prison and surrounding states into graveyards. Those are the people you should fear, not the terrorists, not the pedophiles or other “immoral people”. It’s the highly moral people intent on maintaining order and discipline that you should fear, and remember that it’s supposed to be about freedom, not about security, or avoiding risk at all cost, because if you remove risk from commerce, you remove commerce from the economy. Risk needs to be managed, by quickly figuring out who is causing problems and blocking him, not proactively removing anything that resembles anything that could be imagined to pose a problem; if that was permissible, then we might all as well end up in some prison because we all have the potential of being murderers, thieves and rapists. We can all do it. It’s not who is capable or even likely to do something, it’s who actually does something. When you start judging people not for what they actually do, but what they look like, or what you think they are capable of, you get the Third Reich, and honestly, we’re very much there. And when you start preventing people from doing business not because it’s illegal, but because you think it’s immoral, it’s called the dark ages. And yes, we are very much there, too.

And if that isn’t enough, remember that it was the highly moral people of the Sanhedrin who had Jesus killed, because his continued existence was deemed to be “high risk”.

The Hitler paradox

Hitler became a very interesting part of popular culture; on one hand as a Satan substitute for the secularly minded, and as an educational tool on the other, with purpose of avoiding the possible occurrence of similar people and phenomena in the future.

However, the image of Hitler is so vilified and drawn as such a caricature, that it utterly fails at being educational, like that government-sponsored anti-terrorism video in Australia, which portrayed terrorists as retards. Yes, one understands that the author of the video doesn’t like the terrorists and thus portrayed them as retards in order to make that clear. However, since the actual terrorists are not retards (one was actually a successful and likable student at Dartmouth), the “educational” video fails its primary purpose of teaching people what terrorists do and how to recognize them. Yes, we get it, you wanted to offend the terrorists. Good job at displaying sufficient political correctness. However, you merely spent tax money and achieved no useful purpose. Fail.

The only credible and, in my opinion, valid portrayal of Adolf Hitler was made in the movie Untergang, but it is too limited to be really educational and deals with the phase of his reign in which he was already on the way down, and as such teaches precious little about how he managed to come into power and establish such a firm hold over his nation. The rest of the cinematic and literary portrayals I saw are actually pathetic, and serve very similar purpose to the regime art in totalitarian regimes – that of displaying one’s loyalty to the main stream opinion and vilifying the party’s enemies. Having spent my childhood and youth in one such country, I became very skilled at recognizing this form of bullshit. Essentially, the caricature of Hitler plays the same role in the Western societies as the publicly displayed portraits of the Dear Leader do in North Korea – to love the Regime, to hate its enemies, is to display orthodoxy, which leads to approval and promotion. Failing to do so can be dangerous.

There is not a single thing about Hitler that is not portrayed as negative. I’m frequently amazed by the lengths to which people go in this – his painting, his participation in WW1, his political ideas, his social skills, even the way he ate are portrayed in extremely unfavorable ways. But then the question remains, how did such a caricature of an universal loser manage to inspire Germany, and make it into his obedient tool? This is explained by some sort of a mass psychosis, and thus every possible chance of learning a historical lesson is lost.

In order to learn, we must give up the oh-so-beloved dismissive image of Hitler, and risk wrath of the politically correct idiots who feel the need to constantly display public hatred of the regime’s enemies in order to remove all doubts about their subservience. In order to learn how to avoid the next Hitler, we must learn why people adored him uncritically, to the point of presenting their newborns for blessing. Obviously, what those people saw was not a caricature.

I’m going to do something rather unorthodox. Instead of trying to go the standard route of a biographer, I will skip through the irrelevant tedia of his uneventful childhood and concentrate on what he himself considered important: his art. Let me show some examples of his paintings:

How good is this, how original, how evocative, and what does it say about the author?

Well, it’s technically not particularly good, but we need to evaluate his art from the perspective that it was done by someone who tries to be admitted into the art academy, not by a mature, educated painter. It is technically sufficiently competent to give us some idea about his interests. Is it original? No. Is it evocative, in a sense that you can get some insight into the workings of the author’s mind? Actually, quite so. What I get from it is a feeling of solitude, being rejected and apart from society, a distance from everything important, an emotional separation and a longing. This is a completely different sense of solitude from the one of Ansel Adams’ photography, in which you sense deep serenity, awe and involvement with the beauty. Ansel Adams didn’t go to live in Yosemite because he was rejected by society and tried to find his way in. He went there because that’s where he wanted to be, that’s where the external world manifested things from his inner world that he wanted to capture. It’s quite the opposite thing. Adams is awed by the beauty of nature. Hitler is unhappy, and paints empty sceneries and inanimate structures because of an unfulfilled longing for human acceptance.

I might be looking too much into it, but as a comparison, let’s peek into the minds of some other artists, and look at their early works:

Marc Chagall

Claude Monet

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

Francisco de Goya

 Pablo Picasso

Need I go on?

In order to understand Hitler, we need to understand what made him tick, and if we put ourselves in the position of a young man who thinks he’s a talented artist, and might actually be one, and is repeatedly rejected by what he perceives as a Jewish clique at the art academy, which accepts only their own, who paint things that are currently en vogue in the academia, which dictates what is and what is not to be supported, and is essentially deprived of his chosen occupation by the choice of others and their judgment of him, we can start to understand his anger. The fact that he was at some point essentially a street painter, very close to being a beggar, and that he lived a life of utter destitution and hopelessness, all the while observing the wealthy, who walled the likes of him out of their world of money and culture and education and sophisticated company, we get to understand the painful loneliness in his paintings, and we also get to understand the roots of his anger and hatred for those whom he perceived as guilty for his condition. Eventually, the Jews became the ones to blame, and the root of all evil.

Which brings us to the next important thing about Hitler. He was a conspiracy theorist. This is, probably, the most important, essential thing to know about him, because a conspiracy theorist is an outsider who attempts to heal his perceived impotence and unimportance in the world by creating an elaborate scheme in which he is the one who gets it, who sees through the conspiracies of the elites and is thus important. In fact, he is appointed by destiny to lead his people from bondage into freedom, like Moses lead the Jews into the promised land. He had to suffer through various trials, but was chosen by destiny to be the leader of his people. And the most important thing is, he actually believed that much before it was true. This is quite stunning, and I heard an interesting theory about the possible reason. Hitler dabbled in occultism, and at one point experimented with mescalin, which gave him messianic visions and lead him to the belief that he was a man of destiny. This formed a deep conviction which he seems to have radiated and which the others perceived. He was incredibly self-assured, a man of vision and ideals, and he professed a very simplistic conspiracy theory which rang as completely true to people then, and would ring as true to people now. You see, if I told you there’s an international conspiracy of bankers, who just happen to be Jewish, to control the economies of countries in order to keep them in a subservient state, occasionally inciting wars in order to keep the slave-nations preoccupied and in need of financing, would that be so hard to believe, to a nation that is deeply humiliated by a lost great war and an economy destroyed by the Versailles peace and the resulting war reparations? And in a nation in which democracy couldn’t solve a single problem, could not even elect proper leadership due to political infighting and special interests, a concept of a strong, destiny-appointed Leader who will rebuild his nation from the ashes and lead it to greatness, well, it was appealing, but not enough to give Hitler a significant entry into political life. Only when he maneuvered the political powers into appointing him the prime minister, and when the communists unfortunately decided to burn the parliament building in protest of his appointment (yes, this is actually the narrative that seems to be true, according to my evaluation of the available evidence), and he took dictatorial powers, did he start to get really significant support in the nation, because he seemed to actually introduce law and order and combat the disruptive influences introduced by the parliamentary democracy.

So, when the domestic terrorists ended up in concentration camp, everybody applauded. When the Jews, who were seen as responsible for the financial disaster of the nation, were discriminated against and suffered a strong backlash, everybody applauded. When all the criminals were picked up from the streets and taken into Dachau, everybody applauded. And Hitler created jobs, he rebuilt the economy, he stopped bleeding money into war reparations and infused the nation with a sense of pride, of self-worth and accomplishment, which they sorely needed. He started as a strange political figure on the margins, but when he took power and showed that he really meant business, he was accepted as a messianic figure, a literal savior of his nation, and the interesting thing is, that he actually was. If he died then, at that point, he would have been remembered as one of the greatest men of the 20th century, a father of modern Germany, who brought about the bright new age of science, technology, prosperity, emancipation and freedom. But, unfortunately, he didn’t die then.

One of the weirdest things about Hitler are his racial theories, and we need to look into those, too, in order to understand what made him tick. You remember how I mentioned earlier that he dabbled in occultism? Well, this is more important than it might seem, because occultism at that time meant Theosophy, and his racial theories, as incompatible as they might be with modern science, are quite compatible with the theosophical perspective of things. Theosophy picked up some of the early evolutionary theories and developed those into their framework; for instance, they believed that the human race went through certain evolutionary steps (ethereal, Hyperborean, Lemurian, Atlantean and, the present, Aryan), you could call them quantum leaps, and that humanity at that point was the fifth, Aryan race, with remnants of the fourth, and that in the future there will be a sixth race, as a result of eugenic practice somewhere in the 28th century.

Suddenly, the Hitler’s Aryan race bullshit, which sounded like totally arbitrary nonsense, starts to make sense: he was thinking from within the intellectual framework of the Theosophical society. He basically identified the Germans with Blavatska’s Aryan race, he perceived the problems of Germany as a conspiracy of the Atlantean remnants, mostly the Jews, to hold back the evolution of humanity and to degenerate everything back to the Atlantean level, and he was anointed by the supernatural forces as a leader who will not only re-assert the Aryan evolutionary supremacy, but also purify the gene pool of humanity by removing the remnants of the fourth race and all sorts of degenerate influences.

In order to understand why this made sense, we need to understand the concept of Modernity, or Modernism. This was basically the thing between the French revolution and the Vietnam war; you know, the bright new age for humanity where we get rid of the old and embrace the new, where we are no longer bound by the feudal system, the church and by ignorance, and there is universal liberation and emancipation, empowerment through science and technology. Essentially, Modernism was the mental framework of the 19-20th century, and its patterns are woven throughout the first religion of the New Age, the Theosophical Society. Essentially, it’s about breaking away from the old, ignorant, unconscious and automatic patterns, into knowledge, awareness of the underlying forces of nature, awareness of the supernatural forces that move the natural ones, about childbirth of Humanity into a bright New Age, the new world order.

That’s where we get our key for the Hitler phenomenon – he’s merely a product of his times. He’s not some spectacularly perverted monster who managed to think the unthinkable and do the unimaginable. On the contrary, he did what was merely the norm in Modernity. Mass murder of the “remnants of the old regime” is a tradition established in the French revolution. Genocide of the “inferior races” was already executed in America, by the Spanish and the British. The concept of harvesting a slave race for the benefit of the master race was also widely practiced in the slave markets in Africa. Hitler didn’t actually invent new stuff, he merely methodically implemented things that were accepted as the main stream aspects of Modernity. Of course you kill the ideological enemies, of course you kill the remnants of the old regime, of course you practice eugenics, enslave inferior races if possible and exterminate them if necessary. That’s what Modernity is all about – that, and the progress of science, advancement of technology. Wernher von Braun was an excellent example of the mentality – who cares if the advancement of science is produced for the sake of throwing bombs at people, and with slave labor. What is important is that “mankind” goes to the Moon and the planets. Who cares if the space race is fueled by the cold war, that the real purpose of the rockets is to carry nuclear bombs across the globe, who cares about the Vietnam war and the Cuban missile crisis. What is important is that the Eagle lands, that “humanity” makes its “great leap”. Modernity is the era in which the Americans thought it perfectly acceptable to perform medical experiments on the mentally ill, the prisoners and the “inferior classes”. What is today seen as blatant racism, was the main stream of the evolutionary biology of the time. Germany wasn’t the least bit more racist than America at the time (if anything, it was less so), and that’s the reason why nobody during the WW2 really cared that Hitler gassed the Jews. It was what everybody else would do in his place. In fact, Hitler was greatly inspired by Henry Ford in his antisemitism. It was main stream. Hitler was not on the extreme right fringe of the political practices of Modernity – he was dead center. The only reason why he is vilified is that he lost the war, and the winners rewrote their own history in hindsight, in order to de-emphasize the similarities with Hitler’s Germany for propagandistic purposes. His racial theories are presented as strange madness, while in fact they were the main stream of the salons across the Europe and America, presented together with Buddhism, Vedanta and a New Age variant of Christianity.

And that is the true paradox of Adolf Hitler – not that he wasn’t evil, but that his kind of evil was not the least bit uncommon or extraordinary in his time. In fact, it’s the same kind of mentality which the modern atheists apply to religion – if only they could get rid of it, there would be a bright new dawn of science and knowledge, an intellectual ascent from the dark bonds of superstition and myth. The thing is, it’s not a new idea at all. It’s been tried before. The bright new order of society in which humanity gets rid of the old superstitions and embraces science, technology and reason, purging the reactionary degenerates, actually existed in not one, but two varieties. They were called the Third Reich, and the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics.