Download The Cunning of History by Richard L. Rubenstein PDF

By Richard L. Rubenstein

Richard Rubenstein writes of the holocaust, why it occurred, why it occurred whilst it did, and why it will possibly occur time and again.

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As such, they had become superfluous men. Those apatrides in the detention camps were among the living dead. 26 What made the apatrides superfluous was no lack of ability, intelligence, or potential social usefulness. There were gifted physicians, lawyers, scholars, and technicians among them. Nevertheless, in most instances no established political community had any use for the legitimate employment of their gifts. This was especially true of the Jewish refugees, but they were by no means alone.

They did possess at least nominal membership in a political body. When, for example, they traveled abroad, they were protected by a Polish, Czech, Yugoslav, or Romanian passport. In some respects, a Ukrainian with a Polish passport was better off in Paris than Warsaw. The French police did not discriminate against bearers of valid passports in the same way that the Polish police might at home. Such a person 14 had the formal protection of the Polish government. There were limits to the way the French police might deal with him.

He was subject to the kind of police surveillance and control that was not in turn subject to judicial review. Stateless persons were thus among the first Europeans in the twentieth century to experience unrestricted police domination. Once the police tasted the freedom of dominating one class of men unhindered by judicial process or legal restraint, they sought to extend their power to others. This process reached its zenith in Nazi Germany towards the end of the war when the power of the Gestapo and the SS over the German people was almost completely unhindered by any competing institution.

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