Monday, 12 May 2008

Chavez, National Socialism or "why don't you shut up again"?

That is what Angela Merkel must be thinking right now and what the Spanish king said to Chávez: Chavez, why don't you shut up?

Yeah, here we go again. Chávez declared on his Sunday show German Chancellor Angela Merkel was like Adolf Hitler. You can see more of that in German here and in English here.

I always thought it was very clumsy when someone would declare politician X or Y was like Adolf Hitler or Hitler was worse than Stalin, Castro worse or better than Pinochet and so on. Such general comparisons show a lack of sensitivity, as if we could really measure exactly massive crimes against humanities by one or another group. Crimes against humanity are crimes against humanity and any comparison is making them less shocking or one more excusable (less bad) than the other. Still, we can certainly see if one group or politician uses some methods that are closer to fascism than others.

See: I am definitely not close to Angela Merkel's CDU (I did applaud her support of the Dalai Lama and her critics of how Russia is dealing with Chechnya), but Chavez' latest statement is really ridiculous (again). Let's see: who says "Fatherland, Socialism or Death", in a similar fashion as the National Socialists were saying? Who is allowing such a wild capitalism develop where a rich party-close elite enjoys the biggest luxuries and millions of people live with the crumbles of what is left of an oil boom? Who is saying his party is going to last a hundred or more years and only his party has the solution and all the others are traitors of the Fatherland?

If you speak Spanish, I recommend you Manuel Caballero's book "Por qué no soy un bolivariano". It puts Chávez and his movement in the right historical perspective.

Ps. Angela Merkel's spokesman Thomas Steg just declared Merkel does not have anything more to say on the issue, she had already made clear her position last week. Chavez won't be feeling happy for that. He wanted to have a new show. Oh, Mann, Chavez!

Ps 2. Well, this goes on. Not only the CDU/CSU people as well as many EU functionaries (starting with Barroso) criticizing Chavez. The Social Democrats are talking very negatively about Chavez. I think the Linke is going to have more and more difficulties in defending Chavez. Even very lefty people in Germany know what a stupid comparison Hugo Chavez made.


  1. Santiago Garcia12 May 2008 at 12:18

    Hey Kep, I don't think 'pathetisch' means what you think it does. ;)

  2. Ja, einvestanden mit Santiago. Eher angbracht wäre erbärmlich oder armselig. ;)

    Pathetisch in German is very much associated with pathos, i.e. "the quality or power in an actual life experience or in literature, music, speech, or other forms of expression, of evoking a feeling of pity or compassion." (courtesy

    For example, Wagner is widely considered 'pathetisch'.

  3. Thanks. I was looking for a word non-German speakers would understand.
    Could not think of one.

  4. Merkel reacted like Uribe. Avoiding to put further fuel on the completly pointfree fire.
    To not interpret Chávez pathetic rants as the deplorable, laughable, pathetic footnotes is a clear indicator of being a hopeless nutcase.
    ...only the most radical. They are loud, but they are not many.
    For example:

  5. even more obscure:

  6. Lemmy, those are very extremist people out there in the forum. Even the extreme left, the Linke, will have a lot of trouble now trying to defend the Fat Man in the Palace. As for the Communist Party in Germany...we know how it is.
    Chavez is sinking further.


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