Appeasement and Nietzsche’s Eternal Return 

Sometimes it seems as if Nietzsche was right, and History does indeed return to the same things over and over again in an endless pattern. The variable may be time, but not the acts themselves. Despite the fact that we are now immeasurably more educated and literate than our ancestors, and have an extensive written history, we continue to make the same mistakes over and over as if we were not aware of our predecessors having made them before, and their predecessors before them.

Gabriel Wilensky

 Here’s an example: there’s a country with very high unemployment, with a society embarrassed and humiliated for having lost a war, angry at having lost territory in that war, with its economy in total shambles. A people used to belligerence and many of them armed despite having signed an agreement after losing the war in which they were forced to severely limit their armaments. A society that has inflicted unspeakable suffering upon its neighbors and that now feels they need to make them pay back. A people in great political and social turmoil, experimenting with democratic principles after an entire history of being subjects to some strong political figure who inherited their power, while at the same time with numerous groups from within resisting democracy and yearning for the good old days of a strong man that doesn’t need to waste time in parliamentarian explanations. With groups that use violence and pervasive propaganda to intimidate and convince the hapless population who just wants a good life and is not getting it. With groups that make the Jews the culprits for all their misfortunes and make hating Jews their raison d’être. A society who gradually accepts antisemitism as natural, and that embraces the notion of a powerful enemy guilty not only of their problems, but of the entire world’s problems. A society who embraces the notion that the Jews not only are hateful people, but that they need to be eliminated. A group of people with a charismatic leader who speaks in powerful apocalyptic and messianic terms, who imbues everything he says with religious overtones, convinced he is sent by providence to save his people, who gives them hope and effectively turns them into a cohesive people. A leader who creates a history and a mythology that unites and fortifies them, who gives them a reason to live and to fight for. A leader who antagonizes the people’s perceived enemies, thus giving him even more strength in his people’s eyes. A leader who feels empowered by the mindless masses to make outrageous claims. A leader who sets up groups of armed thugs who then terrorize the entire population. A leader who eventually becomes strong enough to gain power among his people and starts to use his thuggish tactics with his neighbors, who in turn try to do everything possible to avoid armed conflict by attempting to appease him, and who concede more and more things to him, and who allow him to do more and more outrageous things. Neighbors responsible for enforcing the agreements signed but so willfully blind that they look the other way and pretend not to see him breaking the law and his signed agreements. That allow him to rearm, to smuggle and manufacture weapons, to organize militias and armies, to use inflammatory language and extreme propaganda to inculcate hatred and his vile ideology, to exploit every possible outlet to spew his inflammatory lies, in schools, on the radio, on newspapers, on street posters, at mass meetings and rallies and from the pulpits. A leader who organizes youth movements to recruit and indoctrinate the youth’s tender minds. Minds that then succumb to the barrage and become murderous automatons, while meanwhile his neighbors continue to try to appease him. They give him more and more with the hope he’ll calm down, but he has no intention of calming down, he has no intention of accepting just those things his neighbors are willing to give him. He wants it all and he is not going to stop until he gets it. And so they continue to give him more, until one day it’s too late and things get totally and violently out of control.

“It’s also interesting to note how no one seems to learn the lessons from the past: appeasement never works, negotiating with terrorists or criminals doesn’t work, arming groups of thugs is dangerous and will always backfire, and the only possible crackdown on these people is a violent one.”

It’s interesting to note how the Palestinian people have been emboldened and empowered by Arafat, and how he managed to create a terrorist state under the nose of the entire world, who had tried to appease him for forty years and put him in power and gave him vast sums of money to form the basis of a future Palestinian state, while he and his cronies stole most of that money and used the rest to illegally arm and train terrorist groups. It’s interesting to note how he has managed to create an alarmingly efficient propaganda apparatus that has brainwashed not only their own population, but most of the world. It’s also interesting to note how all this went on despite the fact that it’s been known that his strategy was to create a Trojan Horse to penetrate, attack and destroy Israel from within, and he never had any intention of creating two states living in peace and security side by side, and how despite this obviously blatant fact most of the world tried to appease him. It’s interesting to note how after Israel and the US had said enough to him, and another person was put in power, this person is attempting to appease the now totally out of control armed groups that Arafat so carefully nurtured and supported, groups that now have a life of their own, and are backed economically by powerful Arabs and Iranians and are backed in pretty much every other way by lots of weapons.

It’s also interesting to note how no one seems to learn the lessons from the past: appeasement never works, negotiating with terrorists or criminals doesn’t work, arming groups of thugs is dangerous and will always backfire, and the only possible crackdown on these people is a violent one.

Ah, by the way, the country I was referring to in the example at the beginning was Germany in the 1930s.

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