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History questions not worth their own thread IV

Discussion in 'World History' started by Plotinus, Apr 13, 2012.

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  1. Leoreth

    Leoreth Prince of Blood Moderator

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    Maybe Catholics have brought this on themselves by making a habit out of actively denouncing everything else they consider reprehensible.
     
  2. ParkCungHee

    ParkCungHee Deity

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    Honestly, I'd find "tacit endorsement for an armed struggle" would reflect a lot better on the Catholic Church in Ireland than what happened. It's reprehensible, but it's at least a moral repugnancy with some character behind it.

    The fact was, the Catholic Church deployed their best threat against the IRA during the Civil War and it did nothing, which wasn't too worrying for them at the time, but after the Health Care Crisis of the Republic the Catholic Church was conducting a rear guard action from Irish Politics, and was unwilling to invest much of it's dwindling political capital in the troubles.

    So I guess on review I'd describe their position as "tactical absenteeism."
     
  3. SeekTruthFromFacts

    SeekTruthFromFacts King

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    That's a good point. I had a knee-jerk reaction.... and put my foot in my mouth. I must write a self-criticism. ;)

    Perhaps a better statement: a Western head of government who starts giving favours to friends (even friends made in courageous combat) is acting inconsistently with the professed basis of legitimacy of their position. They're hypocrite, and perhaps cutting off the branch on which they sit.
     
  4. SeekTruthFromFacts

    SeekTruthFromFacts King

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    I spent a few minutes looking at the Wiki articles on the Roman Archbishops of Armagh (leaders of the the RCs in the north of Ireland) during this period:

    William Conway (1968-77):

    "Who in their sane senses wants to bomb a million Protestants into a united Ireland?"
    "The persons responsible for such a barbaric act have lost all sense of the sacredness of human life and have thereby become less than human."
    "One must raise one's voice to high heaven against this slaughter of the innocent, irrespective of the religion of the victim." (One of these was presumably Eva Martin Eva Martin, a female British soldier killed by PIRA).

    Tomás Ó'Fiaich 1977-90

    "Raymond McCreesh was captured bearing arms at the age of 19 and sentenced to 14 years' imprisonment. I have no doubt that he would have never seen the inside of a jail but for the abnormal political situation. Who is entitled to label him a murderer or a suicide?"
    According to British politician Henry Bellingham, "the recent murder of Mr. McAnulty--presumably because he refused to pay protection money--was particularly vile and evil [and]... was condemned by ... many people in South Armagh, including Thomas [sic] O'Fiaich..." McAnulty was a Roman Catholic civilian killed by PIRA.

    Cahal Daly (1990-96)

    On the murder of two British soldiers by PIRA: “For God's sake, rid our hearts of this poison. Evil must be rejected totally and unequivocally. There must be no ambivalence, no double standards, no selective indignation.”

    So there seems to be reasonable evidence that the main RC leader in Northern Ireland always condemned PIRA violence in words. It's also interesting that Cardinal Ó'Fiaich described the Dirty Protest volunteers as political prisoners, which suggests that he viewed the conflict in a similar way to Republican and Nationalist politicians. However, there's little evidence that the archbishops were leading the faithful down the Falls Road demanding a boycott of PIRA sympathizers and picketing Provisional Sinn Féin offices. Words, not deeds.
     
  5. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Super Moderator

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    Mit brennender Sorge was indeed an important and courageous document and did represent a major condemnation of Nazi ideology. However, it's important to recognise its limitations as well as its strengths. The encyclical criticised Nazism solely on theological grounds, not moral. The first five paragraphs are devoted to insisting that the church is not at all responsible for everything that's gone wrong since the signing of the concordat. The rest of it attacks Nazi ideology for elevating race to an idolatrous level, turning theism into pantheism, rejecting the necessity of Christ for salvation, rejecting the Old Testament as genuinely revelatory, and preventing the church from exercising all its functions. Much of it is concerned with the Nazis' use of Christian language, such as "God", "faith", "immortality", etc. to mean non-Christian things.

    I don't find a single word in the document condemning Nazism on moral grounds, such as an insistence that antisemitism is simply wrong or the ways in which Jews had been treated up to that point was immoral. In fact there isn't a single condemnation of, or reference to, antisemitism in it. The closest it comes is paras. 29-30, where it says that without Catholic teaching, society will inevitably turn to immorality - quite a different thing from denouncing as immoral what it was already doing. This document postdated the Nuremberg Laws.

    The impression I, at least, get from Mit brennender Sorge is that if the Nazis had left the Catholic Church in peace, and not usurped Christian language to mean other things, the church wouldn't have been nearly so bothered. The overriding objection articulated in the document is that the Nazi regime is encroaching on the territory of the church, either doctrinally or pragmatically - not that it's harming others. I find this impression reinforced by the opening of para. 34, where it is condemning the fact that all young people had to join the Hitler Youth which taught doctrines inimical to Catholicism:

    In other words, there's absolutely nothing wrong with forcing children to join a nationalist movement and sing patriotic songs against their will, provided that this movement doesn't also teach them a distorted version of Christianity or prevent them from fulfilling their Christian obligations at other times. In fact the main objection that this paragraph offers to the Hitler Youth is the fact that it prevents members from showing proper Sunday observance.

    Of course the Catholic Church was not alone in failing to condemn National Socialism on moral grounds as well as theological. The Confessing Church criticised it for precisely the same things. Its Barmen Declaration, mainly written by no less a figure than Karl Barth, offered pretty much exactly the same criticisms as Pius XI. Like the Catholic criticism, it was occasioned by Nazi government interference in the church rather than by horror at Nazi beliefs and practices in themselves. This was why Bonhoeffer, among others, broke with the Confessing Church, because he was frustrated at its failure to condemn Nazism on moral grounds. (On the other hand, the Barmen Declaration was written in 1934, not 1937 as Mit brennender Sorge was, so one might be more inclined to excuse its authors somewhat on the grounds that the Nazis' actions had not yet become so obviously worthy of condemnation.)
     
  6. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Deity

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    Reminds me of Russian emigre thinker Ivan Ilyin. He was quite sympathetic to fascism (he used that word to mean both German Nazism and classical Italian fascism), characterizing it as a healthy reaction of European peoples against Bolshevism, but he did insist that the fascists made many grievous errors - namely, "idolatrous caesarism", hostility towards Christianity, one-party monopoly and "national mania of grandeur". As a result of these 'mistakes', Ilyin sadly concluded, fascism made all people of Europe rise against itself and lost in its noble struggle against "totalitarian leftism". He also approved of Franco and Salazar.
     
  7. Flying Pig

    Flying Pig Utrinque Paratus

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    That rather strikes me as expressing a great love for Quentin Tarantino's films, but not being too keen on all the violent bits.
     
  8. Cheezy the Wiz

    Cheezy the Wiz Socialist In A Hurry

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    Haha, I actually came to precisely this realization last night. We were watching Inglorious Basterds, and I realized the only parts of the movie I liked were the ones that weren't gratuitously violent: the scene in the farm house, the awkward meal with Goebbels and Landa, and the entrance scene at the film premiere. You might even say that the only redeeming quality I find in that movie is Christoph Waltz's performance (which is utterly fantastic), but then I think the biggest thing in Tarantino's movies isn't the notoriously gratuitous violence, but the drawn-out scene that precedes that violence, over which said violence, which you know is coming, looms.

    So, yeah. Tangent.
     
  9. Phrossack

    Phrossack Armored Fish and Armored Men

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    Similarly, most of my favorite parts of Django Unchained were the non-violent parts. And Christoph Waltz simply stole the show.

    But anyway. Who or what are the Bulgars? From what little I've gathered, they seem to be a hodgepodge of Turkic and Iranic peoples with a vaguely Tengriist/Iranic pagan religion who split into two groups, one of which settled around the Volga and converted to Islam, and the other of which invaded Europe and settled north of Constantinople, eventually converted to Christianity, and Slavicized almost completely.

    On a semi-related note, is there any information on the Eurasian Avars? I'm not sure if they had a writing system, but such a large empire that interacted so much with the Franks and Romans ought to have at least some info on it.
     
  10. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    I was not aware that theology and ethics were mutually exclusive domains.

    Furthermore, seeing as how its main audience was Catholics at Mass, its primary intention was to tell Catholics that their faith could in no way be reconciled with Nazi ideology. A thorough assault on every crime the Nazis had committed and everything wrong with their regime would've been quite lengthy, and probably redundant given the aforementioned.

    Hurray for victim blaming! Catholics oppose the Nazi Party in the 1930s until they and their families become directly threatened by being outspoken; therefore it's right to call them Nazi-sympathizers.

    There's a certain writing of Alois Grimm which compares the Nazi policies with Leo XIII's social doctrines. I can't remember its name but if you're interested I will try to scurry through my library to find it.
     
  11. ace99

    ace99 Deity

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    Yeah those poor victims. It's not like Catholics had any part at all in the rise of fascism in Italy, Spain, Hungary or Germany....oh wait.
     
  12. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    There has never been a fascist regime in Spain or Hungary; the Catholics were the primary opponents to the Nazi Party in Germany; and Mussolini was never elected in Italy, he came to power from a coup d'etat lead by the secular Fascist Party.

    Congratulations though on continuing the victim blaming. I suppose the Jews deserved the Holocaust because a handful of them supported Hitler.
     
  13. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    What about the SPD and KPD?
     
  14. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    Hm; well, yes, I probably shouldn't have used the word "primary" given that (a) they weren't the largest opposition party and (b) they were entangled in an eventually-failed conspiracy to utilize the Nazi Party. I'll grant you this.

    The Catholics, though, were a persistent and vital part of the opposition to the Nazis. It's a little known fact that the only time Hitler was openly booed in his life was during a speech in Bavaria to a Catholic audience.
     
  15. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Deity

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    Seems that the criticism of the Catholic Church is policy in regards to the Nazis was that they were closer to people like Ilyin then they should've been (Ilyin finally did get himself fired and placed under surveillance by the Gestapo. This forced him to emigrate to Switzerland).

    Admittedly, it never called Nazis a healthy reaction to anything.
     
  16. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    Plotinus and I have been discussing on this very page about the Catholic criticisms of the Nazi Party.
     
  17. TheLastOne36

    TheLastOne36 Deity

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    That is about right regarding the Bulgars I think.

    From what I know, the European Avars that settled in Pannonia, interacted heavily with the Serbs (who were invited to settle in the Balkans precisely for the reason of fighting off the Avars) and then assimilated into Serbian society. That's what a Serbian guy told me anyway.
     
  18. Lord Baal

    Lord Baal Deity

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    It's not that little-known. And it had to do with the euthanasia action against the mentally ill. While many sanitariums were run by the Catholic church, that protest itself had nothing to do with religion. Goebbels was jeered at by a largely Protestant crowd in Prussia at almost the same time.
     
  19. LightSpectra

    LightSpectra me autem minui

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    How does that have "nothing to do with religion"?
     
  20. Lord Baal

    Lord Baal Deity

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    The protest was not religiously motivated. That the people protesting were religious does not make the protest itself religious.
     
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