Sep 14, 2010

Hitler's homosexuality


Sept. 14, 2010

As concerns The Hidden Hitler by Lothar Machtan:

I read this one--when it was fresh on the New Releases shelf--with great interest and an open mind, as it was a new approach to the subject. My method in such cases is to read the book straight through, as if it were a novel, in order to enjoy the authors narrative, and to let the material speak for itself. I then reread the volume critically, taking notes and perusing the footnotes. On first read, The Hidden Hitler was fairly compelling, mostly because it addressed the issues listed, and seemed to provide a viable thesis for consideration. The book is extensively researched and reads well, and the premise itself is worth perusing. So, it is easy to see why one would initially tend to except the ideas presented.

However, one is struck, upon a second read, by the fact that there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever provided to support the idea, other than the purely circumstantial. There is not one shred of documentation that is not third-hand, and no physical evidence of any kind. The entire exercise is similar to any number of books that purport to 'prove' the extraterrestrial origins of UFO's without providing any physical evidence to support the contention. Sure, it is conceivable that such is the case, and it would explain a number of phenomenon if true, but this in itself is not enough to cause one to embrace the idea. One simply cannot prove anything without proof, no matter how elegant the proposed solution may seem to be. Whether it is UFO's, or Hitler's sexual preferences, proof is still required. Machtan provides no proof, and thus proves nothing.

The 'evidence' he points to consists of second or third-hand accounts by people who claim to have actually seen such evidence when it existed, but it has all since disappeared. This evidence allegedly includes police reports, affidavits, and even a porno film (perish the thought!) starring a young Hitler. The author claims that Hitler's agents destroyed this substantial body of evidence before it could fall into 'the wrong hands.'

> Hitler tried his utmost best to destroy his history. What did he have to hide so badly?

While it is a fact that Hitler did his best to keep his personal history under wraps, the motivation does not necessarily include hiding evidence of Hitler's homosexuality. In Mien Kampf, Hitler reinvented himself, playing fast and loose with the facts to make his 'rags-to-riches' history as compelling as possible. This included stating that his family was poor and struggling, when in fact they were prosperous and upper middle-class, and ignoring unpleasant facts, such as his Aunt Johanna's hunchback, the Schicklgruber
Name-change, the unknown paternal progenitor, his half-brother's police record, etc..

It is documented that Hitler did his best to keep these facts from the German electorate. But, seeing as all sources were available to researchers without restriction until January of 1933 in the case of his Munich days, and until the Anschluss in the case of Austria, it is apparent that this attempted cover-up was decidedly unsuccessful. Conrad Heiden and a plethora of his peers tore apart every available archive seeking every possible fact about Hitler long before he acquired the power to stop them. Had there been any evidence that Hitler was homosexual, it would have turned up then, and since all those researchers were journalists working for newspapers opposed to Hitler, such evidence would have immediately seen print. In the event, all of the dirt that was fit to print was indeed printed.

> 1. Hitler had feminine characteristics. Namely his poses, gestures, handwriting and appearance.

This is far too subjective. Even supposing that an objective observer would conclude that Hitler's mannerisms were effeminate--and millions of German women who worshipped Hitler as if he were a rock star would surely disagree--how many he-man artists can you name? Feminine is in the eyes of the beholder, and only Waite and a few others would venture to claim that Hitler came across universally as a girly-man. To many, he was an object of manly virility (though I would certainly not include myself in this group).

> 2. Hitler had inseparable relationships with men, such as Kubizek, in his early years.

This was Hitler's longest lasting friendship before the war, but it can hardly be described as 'inseparable.' Hitler and Kubizek were best friends from the autumn of 1905 until the autumn of 1908, at which time they went their separate ways.

> 3. Hitler more or less abandoned his so-called 'lover' Eva Braun and was undoubtedly sexually inactive with her.

Seems to me that he was with Eva far longer than he was best friends with Kubizek, and, far from in death being parted, they were united in death. Neither ever 'abandoned' the other, though their relationship was often rocky. As for whether or not Hitler and Eva were sexually active, there is documented evidence both ways, though in neither case is it definitive. I think that the following passage from Eva's diary can be interpreted to confirm that they were not 'inactive' at all:

March 11, 1935: There is only one thing I want. I would like to be seriously ill, and to hear nothing more about him for at least a week. Why doesn't something happen to me? Why do I have to go through all this? If only I had never set eyes on him! I am utterly miserable. I shall go out and buy some more sleeping powder and go into a half-dreamlike state, and then I won't think about it so much. Why doesn't that Devil take me with him? It would be much better with him than it is here. I waited for three hours in front of the Carlton, and had to watch him buying flowers for Ondra and inviting her to dinner. (That was just my mad imagination. March 16th.) He only needs me for certain purposes, otherwise it is not possible. This is idiocy. When he says he loves me, it only means he loves me at that particular instant. Like his promises, which he never keeps. Why does he torment me like this, when he could finish it off at once?

> 5. 15,000 homosexuals were prosecuted and killed. Surely the Nazis could've had a lot more killed?

In order to make this case, one would need hard data as to how many known homosexuals were in Germany at that time. Seeing as the lifestyle was suppressed to such a degree, it is impossible to determine such a quantity.

More to the point, even if all of the points above were conceded—and they are all somewhat arguable—they are still merely circumstantial.

In conclusion: Why is this considered so important to some? Is this whole line of inquiry just another variation of the "Hitler was not 'normal,' and thus his crimes cannot be laid on the doorstep of us 'normal' fellows" theory (leaving aside whether or not homosexuality can indeed be considered beyond the norm)? The idea that there was something wrong with Hitler that caused him to perpetrate his crimes is prevalent in the literature, whether it is an implication that he was insane, possessed, or otherwise abnormal. All of these popular explanations employ circular logic and spurious assumptions to make their points, and I, for one, remain unconvinced by any of them. However, such lines of inquiry are perfectly acceptable and should be encouraged. Perhaps a convincing theory will one day emerge. In my view, The Hidden Hitler fails to provide such a theory.




Being happy–is it good for the Jews? "Before Professor Dershowitz accused me of being an anti-Semite (news to me), I was a happy person. Since then, I'm still a happy person". –Michael Santomauro

An antisemite condemns people for being Jews, I am not an antisemite.--Michael Santomauro

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