Stop Comparing Everything You Don’t Like to the Nazis

The lazy shorthand for calling something or someone evil is to compare them to the Nazis. It’s a cheap and easily-understood way of demonizing something you personally don’t like. Call it guilt by association, with an association that usually isn’t real.

Not surprisingly, you find an enormous amount of these false comparisons among conspiracy theorists in the alternative medicine community. Even just a basic search reveals conspiracy and natural health websites spouting rumors of a vast counterfactual history of the Nazis. They theorize that it was really Hitler’s Germany that won the war, and is now ruling us through complicated plots meant to keep us fat, sick, stupid and weak.

Of course, Hitler’s progeny wouldn’t be able to do this without their shills, flunkies and quislings in the pharmaceutical, medical, agricultural and media industries – not to mention their endless supply of politicians kept well-fed through kickbacks and schemes. The end result is a society kept under the thumb of the global elite (who cooked up that whole World War II thing just to make more money), with only a few truth-seeking bloggers and rebel doctors fighting to help the rest of us open our eyes.

All of this is historically inaccurate, chemphobic nonsense. The Nazis were plenty horrible enough without having to link them to things they had nothing to do with, such as…

Monsanto – Natural News head Mike Adams’ recently published incoherent screed comparing GMO scientists to Nazi collaborators (while advocating for their murder) was far from the first bizarre attempt to link the US biotech giant and current Most Evil Company in the Universe to Hitler.

A friendly warning from Alex Jones.

A friendly warning from Alex Jones.

Some conspiracy theorists focus on a 1954 joint effort between Monsanto and Bayer AG, the German chemical company. The new firm they created together, called Mobay, cornered the market on producing industrial chemicals called isocyanates, until it was sued by the Justice Department in 1967 for antitrust violations. Bayer bought Monsanto’s share of the firm and that was the end of the collaboration.

The supposed Nazi connection stems, apparently, from the fact that Bayer AG was one of the companies that was merged together in 1925 to create the German industrial monolith IG Farben. Farben was one of the engines of Germany’s killing industry, and its directors were rightly tried and convicted for crimes against humanity after the war. In 1951, Farben was broken back up into its parent companies, including Bayer AG. It was liquidated several years later, with its only purpose until 2003 being to pay reparations to Holocaust victims.

This is incredibly tenuous. Saying “Monsanto worked with Bayer, Bayer was IG Farben, IG Farben was Nazi, therefore Monsanto is Nazi” is ludicrous. We don’t tar every company that worked with the Nazis with these accusations – otherwise, taking a Bayer aspirin, wearing a Hugo Boss shirt or driving a BMW would make you one.

Fluoride – The theory that the Nazis used water fluoridation as mind control to keep their concentration camp victims docile and stupid is often cited by proponents of local ballot measures meant to ban its use in municipal water supplies.

However, it has no validity and no supporting evidence in the historical record. For one thing, despite the objections of fluoride truthers, extensive testing and six decades of use have found it to be safe and extremely effective when added to underground water supplies. Additionally, the Nazis were meticulous about documenting their medical experiments, and not a single reference to fluoride can be found in any of the paperwork recovered from any concentration camp.

The idea of the Nazis subduing their victims with fluoride appears to have first been printed in “Fluoridation: Mind Control of the Masses?”, a pamphlet self-published in 1987 by Australian anti-fluoride zealot Ian E. Stephens. Stephens, in turn, cites Charles Elliot Perkins, an American chemist who traveled to Germany after the war and heard from nameless German chemists of

“[a] scheme which had been worked out by them during the war and adopted by the German General Staff.

“This was to control the population in any given area through mass medication of drinking water. In this scheme, sodium fluoride occupied a prominent place.

“Repeated doses of infinitesimal amounts of fluoride will in time reduce an individual’s power to resist domination by slowly poisoning and narcotizing a certain area of the brain and will thus make him submissive to the will of those who wish to govern him.

“Both the Germans and the Russians added sodium fluoride to the drinking water of prisoners of war to make them stupid and docile.”

Despite Stephens’ ramblings being quite lengthy and detailed, he never offers anything substantive or science-based to back these claims up. Perkins himself was asked on numerous occasions for more evidence, but continued only repeating the claim that “German chemists” told him about the Nazi fluoridation plot.

No subsequent research has ever found any connection between the Nazis and fluoride, no evidence that they knew what it was, nor any reason why they would use it.

Aspartame – If you’re going to keep people mind-controlled through poison, you might as well hedge your bets and use two poisons. So goes the theory connecting Nazi Germany to the dreaded (and completely safe) artificial sweetener aspartame.

But this one is even easier to debunk. Aspartame wasn’t synthesized until 1965, when a student chemist named James M. Schlatter developed it by accident while working at Searle, which later became Pfizer. Dr. Schlatter was born in 1942, and would have been a little young to be recruited by the Nazis to be a pharma stooge for their nefarious plans.

Any other connection between Nazi Germany and artificial sweetener exists only in the minds of conspiracy theorists and anti-chemical activists.

90 seconds? But I want my crisp Nazi bacon now!!

90 seconds? But I want my crisp Nazi bacon now!!

Microwave Ovens – Speaking of anti-chemical activists, the theory connecting Nazi Germany and the microwave oven comes straight from an infamous one: the health and lifestyle blogger known as “Food Babe.”

In 2012 blog post entitled “Why It’s Time to Throw Out Your Microwave,” Food Babe, aka Vani Hari, makes a number of wild and scientifically inaccurate claims (debunked by Steven Novella, among others) about microwaves and what they do to food.

The first of these is that “Microwaves were never thoroughly researched before adoption in the United States.” To support this extremely wrong bit of wrong, she writes:

“The microwave oven was developed more than 80 years ago, and in WWII German solders (sic) were given these ovens to warm meals. Germans conducted several studies about the biological effect of using microwaves, which were transferred to the United States for further scientific investigation, but were never researched thoroughly before these ovens were mass produced for the general public.”

Yes, folks, the Nazis gave their stormtroopers microwave ovens to lug around their various conquests of Europe. Therefore, you shouldn’t use yours.

Surprisingly (or not), Hari didn’t actually make this up herself. Variations on the claim that the Nazis discovered or developed the microwave have been going around for a while, never with any kind of evidence to support them. The most oft-repeated version is that the Nazis developed a rudimentary portable microwave oven called a “radiomissor” for infantry use during the invasion of the Soviet Union.

The problem with this is that it’s totally counter to the historical record.

Actual microwave oven technology wasn’t invented until 1946, when a Rayethon engineer named Percy Spencer accidentally melted a candy bar in his pocket while standing in from of a magnetron. I can’t find a single picture of a “radiomissor” from any point in the war, and no archival source from either Germany or the Allies has ever claimed such a thing existed. Any reference to “German studies of microwaves on biology” all come from alternative medicine sites like Mercola, Natural News and others. Finally, Russia’s electricity grid during the 1940’s was extremely primitive. What would the Germans plug their microwave into?

Needless to say, Hari cites absolutely nothing to prove her claim. Because nothing exists to prove it.

Making up false claims about plots the Nazis were “secretly” involved in only obscures the true horrors of what they actually did do. When you find alternative medicine advocates spewing this nonsense, you should be extremely skeptical and go digging for primary sources. I guarantee you won’t find them.

About Mike Rothschild

Mike Rothschild is a writer and editor based in Pasadena. He writes about scams, conspiracy theories, hoaxes and pop culture fads. He's also a playwright and screenwriter. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/rothschildmd.
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21 Responses to Stop Comparing Everything You Don’t Like to the Nazis

  1. Reg says:

    To who?

    The high power Cavity Magnetron was invented by the English who gave it to the Americans who unwisely put their radar in the last ship instead of the lead ship at one of the several Battles of Guadalcanal, thus losing any advantage. The “others” used “Acorn” tubes to generate their radar signals which is why they never broke out into high power radar. I’ve got one of those little tubes, complete with their little symbol of the time.

  2. wlinden says:

    What is the difference between “advocating their murder” and “advocating for their murder”?

    I am decidedly peeved by the “advocate for” meme.

    • Reg says:

      A LOT worse than “reverting back” eh? Or particuly for partic-u-lar-ly. Sick making!!! Or the stomach churner, “really unique.”

      The Nazi are a good base line when it comes to nastiness but real comparisons usually require a bit of finesse. And please, NO finessing. OMG the spell-checker didn’t complain!!

  3. vm says:

    Assault weapons were invented by nazis, along with the type of bullet used. DUHHH, “spitzer” is a german word . Assault weapons are the weapons of choice for anti-NWO preppers and the like. Yet no real effort except for some just for show emasculated assault weapon bans have been instituted.

    Since they were invented by the nazis and THEY are still in the hands of the anti NWO people and THEY seem to be unconcerned, maybe there’s something sinister about them. When the NWO takes over THEY probably know something we dont about assault weapons

    hahahaha lolz joke

    • David Parker says:

      The Thompson sub-machine gun was put into production around 1920, so this would shoot down the notion that the Nazis invented the assault weapon. “Assault” isn’t a weapon, anyway, it’s a behavior.

      • David Parker says:

        Pun, of course, intended.

      • Robert Gionis says:

        “Assault rifles are short, compact, selective-fire weapons that fire a cartridge intermediate in power between sub-machine gun and rifle cartridges.” US Army intelligence document FSTC-CW-07-03-70, November 1970. http://www.virginia1774.org/DIA-ST-HB-07-03-74.pdf

        Sub machine guns fire pistol ammo. Assault rifles fire intermediate rounds.

        “Assault Rifle” is the English translation of the German word “Sturmgewehr”

      • Robert Gionis says:

        The term assault rifle is a translation of the German word Sturmgewehr (literally “storm rifle”, “storm” as in “military attack”). The name was coined by Adolf Hitler as a new name for the Maschinenpistole 43, subsequently known as the Sturmgewehr 44, the firearm generally considered the first assault rifle that served to popularize the concept and form the basis for today’s modern assault rifles.
        The translation assault rifle gradually became the common term for similar firearms sharing the same technical definition as the StG 44. In a strict definition, a firearm must have at least the following characteristics to be considered an assault rifle:[5][6][7]
        It must be an individual weapon with provision to fire from the shoulder (i.e. a buttstock);
        It must be capable of selective fire;
        It must have an intermediate-power cartridge: more power than a pistol but less than a standard rifle or battle rifle;
        Its ammunition must be supplied from a detachable magazine rather than a feed-belt.
        And it should at least have a firing range of 300 metres (980 feet)
        Rifles that meet most of these criteria, but not all, are technically not assault rifles despite frequently being considered as such. For example, semi-automatic-only rifles like the AR-15 (on which the M16 rifle is based) that share parts or design characteristics with assault rifles are not assault rifles, as they are not capable of switching to automatic fire and thus are not selective-fire capable. Belt-fed weapons or rifles with fixed magazines are likewise not assault rifles because they do not have detachable box magazines. http://www.worldlibrary.org/articles/assault_rifle

  4. Edward Rothschild says:

    Chelation therapy is an alternative medicine staple which is working its way into main stream medicine. Those fighting it have, for years, labeled it ‘Nazi medicine” because a German study done in 1933-4 found that coal miners treated for lead poisoning by this method had less heart trouble than miners who had not been treated. Chelation uses chemicals that chelate (grab) metal atoms from soft tissue. The German research showed it reduced blockages by cheleating calcium from blood vessels which was binding cholesterol and causing the blockages leading to heart attacks. It was a standard treatment until the 1950’s, when open heart surgery replaced it. The alternative medicine folks claim that it is safer, longer lasting and much less expensive; their foes claim that there are no proper double blind studies proving it works and that it in fact does not work. No such studies have been funded. The cost for a full round of 15 chelation treatments is about $2500. The full cost of a by-pass operation is about $150,000, so there is an economic incentive to do the surgery and none to fund a study. In fact, since chelation therapy can take weeks to work (at two or three two-hour secessions of an IV drip), it is not of much use in emergencies. The scientific arguments can be evaluated on their merits, but the AMA charge that it is bad because its Nazi medicine is as wrong as the alternative medicine nuts making the same charge about aspartame or micro-waive ovens. Whether chelation therapy works is not the point. It is wrong to attack it on the bases that the first studies were done partly under Nazi rule in Germany. That alone does not make it scientifically wrong or inherently evil. Great article, with the solid research Mike is famous for.

    • Reg. says:

      As I’ve mentioned here before, it was Nazi experiments with icy immersion of victims that uncovered the proper way of lifting downed pilots from the channel without the heart-attack. It is used to this day with proper recognition of the part played by the unfortunate victims of the experiments. A Memorial that should never be forgotten.

    • mudguts says:

      Notice how the modern folkloric therapists and their followers will try anything to get a view comment across?

      That application is bunk.

      There are many articles on chelation procedures and the science behind them if one only bothers to look (or learn to look).

      Repeating blog roll on a blog comments list is par for the course tho..

  5. Phil says:

    There is one point in this article where I think the writer has slipped up and that is in his introductory paragraph. Fascism is a form of Government that many people still find attractive. The growth of a globalised Corporate and labour market that works in cahoots with Givernement and popular media rather fits Mussolini’s own definition of Fascism and on a Global scale.

    There is therefore a desire on the part of many ultra-conservatives to sanitise the memories of Fascism and its more extreme German form of Nazism. This attempt to sanitise often takes the form of deriding anyone who draws parallels – however valid those parallels might be

    It is importand not to fall into that trap. Often direct connections with the Nazi era can be drawn – for example in the Middle East where the one time Mufti of Jerusalem was an associate of the Nazi leadership and lived in Berlin during the war. He was related to Yasser Arafat and was the inspiration behind many modern Right Wing extremist Jihadist movements. That salute IS a Nazi salute

    I agree that relating the use to microwaves with the Nazis is a bit silly, but on a political level it is only sensible to point to the parallels, especially those related to the engineered collapse of the Weimar Republic. i would urge people to use these comparisons responsibly. But use them

  6. Joel says:

    It’s a good use of language because it directly incorporates the U.S. Governments scientific pursuits with a frolic with the beast.

    So by using the term nazi as place of evil you are saying you don’t accept U.S. involvement in evil. And that there must be a way to say you American are rubbing up with the beast you nazi, rather than just saying oh evil is rearing its universal head. Yeah evil is universal, but the nazi usage is saying a more complex connection that actually is mostly true.

    We really went all in on our use of German war science, and the world is suffering.

    So keep saying it, you are saying that the USA will again be free of a brush with evil.

  7. Macky says:

    Phil’s quite right.

    His second paragraph re “There is therefore a desire on the part of many ultra-conservatives to sanitise the memories of Fascism and its more extreme German form of Nazism. This attempt to sanitise often takes the form of deriding anyone who draws parallels – however valid those parallels might be” is pertinent to American history, easily accessed on mainstream, but often it seems largely ignored in the feeding frenzy of conspiracy theory bashing, whether justified or not.

    America’s own history of eugenics, well-entrenched before the Nazi party ever existed but carried by them to its logical extreme ends, is one such example. Another is the enthusiastic endorsements and business dealings with the Nazi regime by American industry, two notable examples IBM’s Watson and Ford, Time magazine’s man of the year none other than Adolf Hitler in I think 1938.

    The CIA and its continuous involvement at least since late 40’s in the overthrow of basically democratic govts/leaders in countries that simply wanted to manage themselves, and the installation of vicious dictators more compliant with American corporates and their economic plundering of said countries.

    The extensive and prolonged predations of MKUltra (more CIA Nazi-style thuggery) on home citizens without their knowledge and/or permission, as well as other blatant human-rights abuses and outrages against America’s own citizens.

    Post WW2 extraction from Germany of Nazi war criminals such as Wernher von Braun and Hubertus Strughold from possible Nuremberg trial and prosecution, along with some 1600-1800 other Nazi’s under Operation Paperclip, and the use of other war criminals such as Klaus Barbie.

    There is increasing evidence of deliberate harbouring of white Russian Nazi war criminals after WW2 and their settlement in the good old USA.

    Today post 9-11, the increasingly repressive laws enacted under the banner of “security” post 9-11, largely an American pop legend as to its alleged perpetrators, and used as an excuse to invade and plunder middle eastern countries. The president acting under ‘executive order’ and calling for bi-partisan support for amnesty for thousands of illegal immigrants, therefore not only undermining any democratic vote, but actually committing treason, as the out-sourcing of millions of US jobs to other countries certainly is.

  8. John says:

    Thank you so much for writing this. Keep up the great writing..

    • Macky says:

      Thank you John. I will, if allowed.

      • mudguts says:

        they’ve never stopped you writing conspiracist garbage to skeptoid before Macky

        • Macky says:

          They can’t have stopped me from writing something which I’ve never written, Henk.

          I’ve written historical mainstream fact, and questioned the US govt Official Story on a FEW important events, using US govt’s own files plus Skeptoid’s mandate, critical analysis.

          I’ve also brought into question Skeptoid’s overriding agenda on said events, plus pointed out an asinine unnatural experiment that boffins are engaged in.

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