Many people are scandalized – rightly so – that it is legal to display the symbol of a perverse ideology that murdered millions of human beings. National-socialism was one of the clearest incarnations of the evil that humanity suffered during the twentieth century, and it is impossible to dissociate its approaches from the genocide perpetrated by Adolf Hitler.
The worst genocides of the 20th century
The indignation at the display of Nazi flags is understandable among democrats, but not between certain margins of the political scene. National-socialism is not alone in the chapter of genocidal ideologies: it is accompanied by communism. In fact, the greatest genocide of the twentieth century was not Hitler, but the communist Mao Tsetung: his dictatorship caused 65 million deaths, a figure that far exceeds the 22 million deaths that are attributed to the German dictator. The communist Stalin is attributed 20 million deaths. In Cambodia, the death toll was much lower in absolute terms, but with 2 million victims, communist Pol Pot was charged to a quarter of the population of his country, being the percentage terms in the most lethal genocide of the twentieth century. The total sum of the crimes of communist dictatorships was around 100 million deaths in 1997, when “The Black Book of Communism” was published, the most comprehensive and exhaustive study of all those elaborated on the crimes of Marxism.
Countries that already ban the swastika and also the sickle and the hammer
In the United States there is a very broad concept of freedom of speech, even protecting in that right those who burn the flag of that nation. It must be said, on the other hand, that in the United States communist and nzi parties have always been marginal. Americans have lived in democracy since the country’s independence in 1776. They have never suffered a dictatorial regime, even though at certain times their democracy had certain shortcomings. The same has not happened in Europe. Nazism and communism devastated much of Europe, acting on whole populations with the same result as a plague of locusts on crops. Thus, in Germany, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Moldova and Ukraine are equally banned swastika and sickle and hammer. It is no coincidence that these countries have suffered greatly from these two totalitarian ideologies. In these countries they have understood that with totalitarianisms, one must have zero tolerance.
What do some understand by democratic communism?
Some people will argue that there are no democratic nazis, but that there are democratic communists and must be respected. However, the reality is very different. Let’s see, without going further, the Spanish case. On May 1, the communists of Izquierda Unida organized demonstrations carrying banners with the face of Lenin, the first communist dictator: a bloodthirsty tyrant who in a little more than six years of dictatorship killed ten times more people than the Franco dictatorship in almost 40 years. The Communist Party of Spain and the Union of Communist Youths of Spain (both integrated in the United Left) have supported the communist dictatorships of Cuba, Vietnam, China and even North Korea, which is today the most brutal dictatorial regime of world. Izquierda Unida have also expressed their support for the dictatorship of Maduro in Venezuela, a socialist regime whose crimes have refused to condemn both IU and Podemos. On the other hand, his plans for the West do not seem to be better than those who are implementing those dictatorships: in 2014 the United Left included in its program to demand the European Union to persecute the anticommunists. Is this what some people call democratic communism?
The precedent of the Weimar Republic
The West must seriously consider the need to act against those who want to reduce democracy to rubble. Tolerance towards totalitarians led to the loss of the Weimar Republic, under constant pressure from Hitler’s national socialists and KPD Communists, whose paramilitary groups – the SA and the Rot Front, respectively – fought the streets On the basis of violence. What happened in Charlottesville – and also the violent riots promoted by the far-left in several cities since Trump’s victory – make it clear that a democracy tolerant of the violent and totalitarian risks risking destabilization by them. If there are certain political formations and extremist groups that do not respect the most basic norms of coexistence of a democracy, starting with the peaceful expression of their own ideas, they should not enjoy the same protection as those who do respect the peaceful and democratic channels. And this applies to those who carry swastikas and to those who go with communist flags, since both ideologies are radically undemocratic. The illogical and incoherent is that some tell us that there are good totalitarians and good dictatorships.
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