e-Article No. 4

Empire of Reason

e-Article No. 4

January 12, 2021

From:  Connecticut Committee of Correspondence

(Committees of Correspondence were early revolutionary cells, specifically organized for revolutionary reeducation, for the manipulation of opinion, so as to lay the groundwork of resistance to the globe’s greatest imperialist power, the British Empire.  “Sam Adams was the promoter of the first local committees on November 12, 1772, and within three months, Governor Hutchinson reported that there were more than eighty such committees in Massachusetts.”  Committees of Correspondence formed the basis for the soon to follow Committees of Public Safety, as the road to revolution unfolded.  See page 217, “Committees of Correspondence,” Concise Dictionary of American History, Editor, Wayne Andrews.)

* * * * *

Killers in the White Coats

By Mark Albertson

* * * * *

In general it should not be forgotten that the highest aim of human existence is not the preservation of the state, let alone a government, but the preservation of the species.

          And if the species itself is in danger of being oppressed or utterly eliminated, the question of legality is reduced to a subordinate role.  Then, even if the methods of the ruling power are alleged to be legal a thousand times over, nonetheless the oppressed people’s instinct of self-preservation remains the loftiest justification of their struggle with every weapon.

          Only through recognition of this principle have wars of liberation against internal and external enslavement of nations on this earth come down to us in such majestic historical examples.

          Human law cancels out state law.

          And if a people is defeated in its struggle for human rights, this merely means that it has been found too light in the scale of destiny for the happiness of survival on this earth.  For when a people is not willing or able to fight for existence—Providence in its eternal justice has decreed that peoples end.

          The world is not for cowardly peoples.[1]

* * * * *

In the democratic forms of government the operation of universal suffrage tends toward the selection of the average man for public office rather than the man qualified by birth, education and integrity.  How this scheme of administration will ultimately work out remains to be seen but from a racial point of view it will inevitably increase the preponderance of the lower types and cause a corresponding loss of efficiency in the community as a whole.[2]

* * * * *

Germans must live with themselves within their own borders for the immediate future, and depend more than ever upon their own resources.  These resources are much depleted.  Hence the present load of social irresponsibles are liabilities which represent a great deal of waste. . .   American Eugenicist, William W. Peter, Secretary, American Public Health Association.[3]

* * * * *

It is the supreme duty of a national state to grant life and livelihood only to the healthy and hereditarily sound and racially pure folk for all eternity. . .   Dr. Arthur Guest, Director of Public Heath, Ministry of the Interior, the Third Reich, 1935.[4]

* * * * *

Introduction

A young German psychiatrist, Ernst Rudin, in 1903, urged that “incurable alcoholics” be sterilized.[5]  By 1914, legislation appeared in the Reichstag, espousing voluntary sterilization, none of which passed.  Yet in the United States, where Eugenics had a fan base, Indiana became the first state to pass sterilization laws allowing for the neutering of those considered criminally insane and mentally ill.  Within twenty years, upwards of 28 states passed like legislation which saw to the sterilization of some 15,000 Americans by 1930, most of whom were shut-ins—such as those in prisons and mental institutions.  By 1939, 29 states were engaged in the practice and more than 30,000 had endured the indignities of Racial Hygiene.  California led the pack with 12,941 processed candidates.[6]

         A number of other countries followed suit, for instance:  On September 3, 1928, “the Swiss  Canton of Waadt passed a law according to which the mentally ill and feeble-minded could be sterilized if public health authorities determined that such individuals were incurable and likely to produce degenerate offspring.  The Swiss law was never of much consequence:  by 1933 only twenty-one such sterilizations had been performed in this canton.  In 1929 Denmark became the second European country to legalize sterilization.  Norway passed sterilization legislation in 1934, followed by similar laws in Sweden (1935), Finland (1935), Estonia (1936) and Iceland (1938).  Other states that passed sterilization laws were Vera Cruz (in Mexico), Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Lithuania, Latvia, Hungary, and Turkey.”[7]

          In Nazi Germany, Wilhelm Frick, Hitler’s Minister of Interior, announced on June 2, 1933, that an “Expert Committee on Questions of Population and Racial Policy,” would be formed.  Their work was quick; for on the same day the Hitlerites outlawed all other parties except for that of National Socialism, July 14, 1933, the measure, “Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring” AKA the Sterilization Law, was passed.  Until the advent of the above law, sterilization had been illegal in Germany.  But the Aryanization of the German Race called for the neutering of those deemed pollutants of the strain; perhaps those afflicted with manic-depression, schizophrenia, those considered simple-minded, or downright insane, genetic blindness. . .   Such were the considered grounds for sterilization by any sanctioned genetic health court.[8]

          The Capitalist motive enters, of course, when compensating eager physicians seeking to fill a quota of unfortunates.  In 1934, for example, 32,268 were sterilized; 1935, 73,174 and in 1936, 63,547.  By September 1, 1939 (Hitler’s invasion of Poland), upwards of 300,000 had been sterilized.[9]

          Yet the spaying and neutering of “Useless Eaters” proved lacking as a method for Aryanizing the German Race; rather, the preservation of the species required a process, one that was singular in purpose and, with a finality insuring the triumph of the Teutonic struggle against that human flotsam that proved a threat to the purity of the strain.  Such an intolerant disdain for the deficient, defective and enfeebled among the German population served as that leader for that horror movie to follow.  When entire populations would be deported, consigned to slave labor, subjected to medical experiments, victimized in brutal occupations, or trapped in a ghettoized existence that fed an assembly line approach to extermination.  Indeed, Endlosung or the Final Solution, was spawned from the National Socialist program of Organized Medical Killing, that had been conceived, contrived and conjoined with a pathological disdain for the weak.  The culmination of ideas from such 19th century philosophers as Johan Gottlieb Fichte, with his “’Addresses to the German Nation,’ denouncing the Latin races and the Jews as decadent and the source of human misery.”[10]  That the German Race was an elite species and therefore not subject to those accepted governors on human behavior.  Heinrich von Treitschke, that those considered unimportant or unessential hardly mattered, their concerns being irrelevant, little better than material for slaves of the state.  Friedrich Wilhelm Nietsche, the idea of the Superman, a superior race of intelligent, physical specimens, ensconced above the laws, traditions and moralities of mortal men, the true keepers of the earth.  Sterilization, then, was lacking as that prophylactic to the Volkstod [11] of the German Race.  The next step in the Nazification of medicine was to insure the healthy breeding of German children, while at the same time, bringing to an end the vermin-like breeding of those not fit to be fruitful and multiply.

* * * * *

The Knauer Affair

Late in 1938, the father of a deformed child, a man by the name of Knauer, petitioned the Reich Chancellery in Berlin.  The communication aroused the interest of Adolf Hitler, who sent his personal physician and intimate, Dr. Karl Brandt,[12] to the University of Leipzig to investigate.

          Dr. Brandt found the child exactly as the father had described—deaf, blind and missing a leg and part of an arm.[13]  He ordered the immediate Gnadentod (mercy death) of the child.[14]  He assured the doctors that any legal action taken against them would be suppressed by the Fuhrer.

          The destruction of the Knauer child was the test case for organized medical killing in Nazi Germany and marked the end of sterilization as the principle means of dealing with those with mental deficiencies and the incurably physically handicapped.  By the following spring, doctors, nurses and midwives were filling out questionnaires for every newborn.  The forms were then sent for evaluation to the Reich Committee for the Scientific Registration of Serious Hereditary and Congenital Diseases.

         Once a child had been diagnosed as incurable, he or she was sent to one of thirty centers known as Reich Committee Institutions for Treatment.[15]  Parents were told that the transfer was due to a change in the child’s condition and that alternative therapy or surgery was necessary.

          The alternative therapy was death, usually by injections of morphine-scopolamine or luminal ground up in the child’s food.  Some were even terminated with suppositories.  Records were falsified and the parents were notified of the child’s unfortunate demise.

          By summer, the age limit of three had been raised to sixteen and the grounds for eligibility had been liberalized.  No Longer were children being terminated simply because of idiocy or missing limbs; but for diagnoses ranging from mongolism to borderline juvenile delinquency to those afflicted with “inferior genes,” a National Socialist euphemism for Jews, Gypsies, and other considered non-German.

          By July 1939, with the killing of racially valueless children well underway, Hitler prepared to rid Germany of the infirm and insane among the adult population.  T4, as the program came to be known, not only became broader in scope than the children’s program, but became an all-out effort by the Hitlerites to purge useless eaters from the Third Reich.  In this the German medical community became a willing partner, as there was never a shortage of doctors or nurses to carry out the Nazis’ murderous scheme.  Indeed many of the medical personnel came from the ranks of the SS, as Heinrich Himmler came to view racial hygiene as another way to Aryanize the German Race.

          Yet it was the institutionalization of medical killing that made T4 so murderously  effective; an intricate network of medicine, government and transportation was woven and honed to such a deadly degree of efficiency, until organized medical killing became systematic genocide.

* * * * *

In July 1939, Hitler conferred with Hans Lammers, head of the Reich Chancellery, and SS-Obergruppenfuhrer (Lieutenant General) Dr. Leonardo Conti.  Dr. Conti was head of the health department in the Ministry of Interior, and as such, was selected to head the program to eliminate the adult incurables.  But when Dr. Conti requested a written authorization, Hitler replaced him with Dr. Brandt, while Lammers was replaced with Reich Leader Philip Bouhler.

          Bouhler and Brandt were prototypical Hitler loyalists, trusted party hacks who could be depended upon to eschew the demands of legality and fiscal accountability to which the ordinary bureaucrat was subject.  For Hitler had no wish to alienate the German people with his program of physician-assisted suicide; and therefore, had no wish to chance a public disclosure of his plans to annihilate a helpless segment of the population.

          Nevertheless, by early October, the need to formalize the program forced Hitler to issue just such an authorization.  The decree, penned by Hitler on his personal stationery and backdated to September 1, read as follows:

          Reich Leader Bouhler and Dr. med. Brandt are charged with the responsibility of enlarging the competence of certain physicians, to be designated by name, so that patients who, on the basis of human judgment, are considered incurable according to the best available human judgment of their state of health, can be granted a mercy death.[16]

          By issuing the decree on his personnel stationery, Hitler made his decision appear as a private matter and not a decision as a head of state; while the September 1 date of issue coincided with the opening of the Polish campaign, which Hitler thought would make the decree appear as a war measure.

          The idea of casting the program of organized medical killing as a war measure, can be seen through Dr. Hermann Pfannmueller, who said, “The idea was unbearable to me that the best, the flower of our youth, must lose its life at the front in order that the feebleminded and irresponsible social elements can have a secure existence in the asylum.”[17]

          Dr. Pfannmueller’s observation indicated the extent to which the Hitlerites were willing to go to establish the Thousand Year Reich.  To establish a warfare state able to recover and retain not only territories lost in 1918, but new adventures in territorial aggrandizement, waged by a military backed by the People or, Master Race.  But to succeed, the Aryan strain itself had to be cleansed of any elements deemed pollutants to racial purity.  Such useless eaters as mental defectives and the incurably physically handicapped had to be purged, despite the fact that among the German people were those who favored euthanasia but, might be opposed to physician-assisted suicide as directed by the state.[18]  But Hitler, wielding his omniscient power as Fuhrer, was going to fashion the German people as his personal instrument for conquest; even if it required ridding their ranks of those unworthy of life.  An agenda that would necessitate a diabolical collusion by government functionaries, the German medical community and, of course, the SS.[19]

* * * * *

It’s All About the Process

At the outset, the program was run out of Philip Bouhler’s office in the Reich Chancellery.  But expansion of the program and the secrecy required for same caused a relocation, to a confiscated villa once owned by Jewish people.  The address was Tiergartenstrasse number 4, which eventually gave rise to the program’s name, T4.

          Reich Leader Bouhler chose Victor Brack[20] to run the day-to-day operations.  T4 was known throughout the Reich Chancellery as Department II.  The cover organization was given the benign nomenclature, “Reich Work Group of Sanatoriums and Nursing Homes.”

          Like the children’s program, selection for death was based on information obtained from questionnaires that doctors and nurses filled out for each and every patient.  The forms contained the usual biographical and symptomatic information, so that unsuspecting physicians and patients were inculcated with the fiction of normal administrative and scientific functions. But one section was specific in its interrogation and, required a check in the appropriate space to determine the sufferer’s exemption from work.  There were four categories from which to choose:  The first listing such debilitations as schizophrenia, epilepsy, senility, retardation, encephalitis and therapy-resistant paralysis.  Second, criminal insanity.  Third, a five-year history of institutionalization.  And fourth, a lack of German citizenship or lack of German blood—that is, Jews, Gypsies, Slavs, Negroes. . .

          Each questionnaire was reviewed by a panel of three medical experts, usually psychiatrists.  Upon completion of his review, each panelist would mark the space provided on the lower left corner with a “+” in red pencil for death, a “-“ in blue pencil for life, and a “?” for further review.  The questionnaires were then forwarded to a senior expert who was not bound by the findings of the previous reviewers.  Once he rendered a decision and affixed his signature, the candidate’s fate was assured.

          But the reviews were cursory at best, as each reviewer poured over no less than hundreds of cases at a time.  And as the program expanded, so did the workload.  For instance, the aforementioned Dr. Hermann Pfannmueller, he reviewed some 2,109 cases in one seventeen-day period.  Little wonder, then, that such heavy workloads and slipshod reviews cost thousands their lives.

          Death lists were drawn up and forwarded to the Common Welfare Ambulance Service.  Pick-up schedules were arranged so that patients could be made ready to travel with their belongings, valuables, and case histories.  The buses of the Common Welfare Ambulance Service were manned by SS personnel clad in white coasts or uniforms of doctors, nurses or medical attendants.  The windows of the buses were blackened or shielded to keep patients from public view.  Documentation furnished allowed the drivers to pass unchallenged through any checkpoint.

          Patients were taken to one of the “transit” or “observation” centers, usually a state hospital located near one of the killing centers.  Letters sent to the families concerned explained the transfer as a war-related measure.  Follow-up letters reassured families of their love-ones’ safe arrival, adding that the demands of war on the Reich’s medical personnel made visits out of the question and that further communication was dependent upon a change in a patient’s condition.  A change in condition nearly always referred to a patient’s death.

         From the transit centers, patients were taken to one of the killing centers located at Bernburg, Brandenburg, Grafeneck, Hadamar, Hartheim and Sonnenstein.  All were converted hospitals, except for Brandenburg, which had been a prison.  All were surrounded by high walls, so that disturbances went unnoticed by the outside world.

          Patients were killed within twenty-four hours of arrival at the killing center.  The standard method of dispatch was by injection, consisting usually of a toxic cocktail of morphine, scopolamine, curare and prussic acid.

         As T4 was broadened to deal with a wider array of useless eaters, the syringe proved lacking as a method of extermination.  There were just too many patients and, they took too long to die.

          What was needed was a more efficient method of killing and disposal, one which would not only keep pace with the growing number of candidates, but kill them without a trace.

* * * * *

“Wirth” Using Carbon Monoxide

In the spring of 1940, Christian Wirth,[21] of the SS Kripo or Criminal Police, working in conjunction with the T4 staff at Brandenburg, supervised the construction of the first gas chamber.  “The arrangement included a fake shower room with benches, the gas being pumped in from the outside and into water pipes with small holes through which the carbon monoxide murderously vented.  Present were two SS chemists with doctoral degrees, one of whom operated the gas.  The other, August Becker, told how eighteen to twenty people were led naked into the ‘shower room.’  Through a peephole he observed that very quickly, ‘people toppled over or lay on the benches—all without ‘scenes or commotion.’  The room was ventilated within five minutes.  SS men then used special stretchers which mechanically shoved the corpses into crematory ovens without contact.  The technical demonstration was performed before a select audience of the inner circle of physicians and administrators of the medical killing project.”[22]  Both Dr. Brandt and Victor Brack, on hand for the demonstration, expressed their approval.

          And it was not long before the other killing centers were armed with gas chambers.  Now each center had the capacity to kill twenty or thirty at a time versus the paltry five or six by injection.

          Yet as the buses raced to keep the ovens stoked, another problem loomed for the Nazis, a dilemma that could not be buried under the mounting ashes of the dead.  That problem was secrecy.  From the occasional loose lips of a staffer to the sweet sickly smell belching from the chimneys, the veil of secrecy that had enveloped T4 was beginning to unravel.

          Children playing in the streets were beginning to recognize the speeding buses.  In Hadamar they would say, “Look, there goes the murder box again,” or, “You’re crazy, they’ll take you to the oven in Hadamar.”[23]

          More and more, people were beginning to question the bogus letters of condolences, demanding to know more about the whereabouts of their loved ones.

          And then there were the church protests.  Protestant Bishop Theophil Wurm of Wurttemberg wrote letters of protest to Reich Minister Wilhelm Frick and Franz Gurtner at the Reich Ministry of Justice.  Pastor Paul Gerhard Braune and Pastor Friedrich von Bodelschwingh, director of the Bethel Hospital, wrote or spoke to many influential Nazis.  One of Braune’s letters even found its way to the Fuhrer himself, while Cardinal Michael Faulhaber of Munich caused a stir when one of his letters appeared in Sweden.

          Catholic Cardinal Adolf Bertram and Bishop Heinrich Wienken, of the Fulda Conference of Bishops, wrote letters of protest and, in the case of Bishop Wienken discussed ways of ceasing the killing with none other than Victor Brack himself, but to no avail.

          But a most powerful voice of dissent was that of Clemens Count von Galen, Bishop of Munster, and bearer of a name renowned throughout Germany for centuries.  The homilies of this indomitable cleric in support of innocent life reverberated all the way to Berlin.  But it was the sermon of August 5, 1941, that shook the very foundation of the Reich Chancellery itself.  A shock multiplied a thousand-fold by leaflets of the reprinted sermon dropped from bombers of the RAF.

          Many leading Nazis like Martin Bormann wanted Galen executed.  Hitler, both terrified and stung to fury, took counsel from Joseph Goebbels.  The wily propaganda minister urged restraint in the face of creating an anti-Nazi martyr, since Catholic support was necessary for the unfolding struggle against Communist Russia.[24]  The Bishop’s comeuppance could wait until after the war.

          On August 24, 1941, Hitler ordered Dr. Brandt to cease the operations of T4.

* * * * *

Postscript

Before T4 was halted in August 1941, some 70,273 had been terminated, according to Robert N. Proctor.  Note the following:

Grafeneck Jan.-Dec. 1940 9,839 killed
Brandenburg Feb.-Sept. 1940 9,772 killed
Bernburg Jan.-Sept. 1941 8,601 killed
Hadamar Jan.-Aug. 1941 10,072 killed
Hartheim May 1940-1941 18,269 killed
Sonnenstein June 1940-Aug. 1941 13,720 killed.[25]

          The orgy of death did not conclude with the termination of organized medical killing; rather, the responsibility for racial hygiene passed from the hands of the German medical community to those of the SS.

          The scope of racial hygiene, as envisioned by Heinrich Himmler and Reinhard Heydrich, proved too much for the parochial confines of T4.  Their diagnosis was simplistic as it was collective:  All those afflicted with inferior genes were subject to the racial cure.  The entire Reich was to be cleansed of Jews, Gypsies, Slavs and other so-called untermensch in a monumental effort that saw syringes and buses give way to gas chambers and trains.

          Yet to fully comprehend the monstrosity of the deed, it is important to recognize T4 for what it really was.  It was not euthanasia, though routinely it has been labelled as such.  “Euthanasia,” according to Webster’s, is “the act or practice of killing individuals (as persons or domestic animals) that are hopelessly sick or injured for reasons of mercy.”[26] T4 was not enacted for reasons of mercy.  One would be hard pressed to find the word “mercy” in Nazi jargon.  Rather, T4 was an attempt to use the medical community to purify the race of mental incompetents, the infirm, the aged, and all those other useless eaters deemed pollutants to racial purity.

          T4, then, was a premediated effort in organized medical killing.  Where doctors, bureaucrats and party hacks took it upon themselves to determine who lived or died.  A National Socialist HMO with racial purity as its objective.

          Could it happen again?  Even here in the United States?  For all the horrors of the Nazi program of genocide, extermination again reared its ugly head in such places as Cambodia, Rwanda and the Balkans.  So it is not inconceivable to consider the possibility of organized medical killing in an era of abortion, gene-splicing and stem-cell research.  In addition, there has been a pronounced shift to the political Right in the United States, as the former Republic pursues Empire as a War Capitalist State, as fifty-three cents of every dollar of discretionary spending goes to war and related.  For in the developed world, people are living longer, a prospect which could clash with spiraling medical coasts and financial pressure to trim budgets.  And in the era of the throwaway society, the infirm, the aged and mental incompetents could very well be considered disposable. 

          In the United States, Baby-Boomers have been retiring, which will put tremendous pressure on Social Security and Medicare; and then there is the medical community itself, which Covid 19 has demonstrated America’s short-sighted approach to national healthcare from the perspective of opting for profit in lieu of prevention. 

          Does this mean that those considered “incurable” will be deemed unnecessary in the face of maintaining fiscal solvency?  The human population has grown by leaps and bounds.  So has Man’s capacity to kill.  And it seems human life is no different, in the end, than any other commodity.  The more of anything there is, the less value it has.  Same holds true for human life.  Whether Man is willing to admit it or not, such is the case.  And this disregard for the sanctity of life bodes ill for the generations to come.

* * * * *

Endnotes

[1]  See page 96, Chapter III, “General Political Considerations Based on My Vienna Period,” Vol. 1, A Reckoning, Mein Kampf, by Adolf Hitler.

[2]  See page 14, Part I:  Race, Language, and Nationality:  Chapter 1, “Race and Democracy,” The Passing of the Great Race, Centenary Edition, by Madison Grant.

[3]  See page 55, Chapter 5, “American Eugenicists in Nazi Germany,” The Nazi Connection, by Stefan Kuhl.

[4]  See subtitle page, Life Unworthy of Life, by James M. Glass.

[5]  See pages 96 and 97, Chapter 4, “The Sterilization Law,” Racial Hygiene, by Robert Proctor.

[6]  See page 97, Proctor.

[7]  See page 97, Proctor.

[8]  See page 96, Proctor.

[9]  See pages 28 and 30, Chapter 2, “Excluding the Handicapped,” The Origins of Nazi Genocide:  From Euthanasia to the Final Solution, by Henry Friedlander.

[10]  See page 27, Chapter One, “The Mind of a Fanatic,” The Life and Death of Nazi Germany, by Robert Goldston.

[11]  Death of the German Race.

[12]  “Brandt, Karl, Lieutenant General, SS.  Hitler’s private surgeon and Reich Commissioner for Health; hanged, 2 June 1948, for his medical experiments.”  See page 462, Dramatis Personae, The SS:  Alibi of a Nation, 1922-1945, by Gerald Reitlinger.

[13]  “Hans Hefelmann, chief of the responsible Chancellery office, remembered that the child lacked three limbs and that its grandmother made the request.  Brandt made the father the petitioner.”  See page 50, Chapter 2, “’Euthanasia,’ Direct Medical Killing,” The Nazi Doctors, by Robert Jay Lifton.

[14]  Chief physician in the Knauer child case, Dr. Werner Catel, concurred with Brandt.  See page 186, “The Destruction of ‘Lives not Worth Living,’” Racial Hygiene, by Robert N. Proctor.

[15]  One category of children slated for processing were known as, Ausschusskinder, AKA committee children or garbage children.  Luckless youngsters who had already been institutionalized or had been through the Nazi sterilization program.  Besonderes Heilverfahren were the incurables or those afflicted with hereditary diseases.  See pages 206 and 207, Part III, Prosecution, 27, “The Ravages of Euthanasia,” Justice at Nuremberg, by Robert E. Conot.

[16]  See page 67, Chapter 4, “Killing Handicapped Adults,” The Origins of Nazi Genocide:  From Euthanasia to the Final Solution, by Henry Friedlander.

[17]  See page 63, Chapter 2, “Euthanasia, Direct Medical Killing,” The Nazi Doctors:  Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide, by Robert Jay Lifton.

[18]  “In 1920, Ewald Meltzer had surveyed parents of 162 handicapped children, asking whether they would be willing to have their child put to death, and if so, under what              circumstances.  A surprisingly large number of respondents advocated some sort of euthanasia for their children:  119 (73 percent) said yes.  See page 194, Chapter 7, “The Destruction of ‘Lives Not Worth Living,’” Racial Hygiene, by Robert N. Proctor.                                                                                                                                 

          According to a Gallup Poll in 1948, some 37 percent of Americans favored euthanasia if a loved one was beyond medical help and seemed terminal.  In 2014, a Gallup canvas found that 69 percent favored euthanasia under the same criteria.  Opponents of the 2014 poll point to a Pew Poll conducted in 2013, which found only 47 percent favored euthanasia.  A major criticism involved was what some saw as the phrasing of the question as leading to the disparity in the polls.  But one thing seems certain, that there seems to be an increased acceptance of physician-assisted suicide when the quality of life seems hopeless.

[19]  In revisiting Hitler’s decree, dated September 1, 1939, one is struck by the wording . . . it was not an order.  Dr. Robert N. Proctor explains:  “Doctors were never ordered to murder psychiatric patients and handicapped children.  They were empowered to do so, and fulfilled their task without protest, often on their own initiative.  Hitler’s original memo of October 1939 was not an order (Befehl), but an empowerment (Vollmacht), granting physicians permission to act.”  See page 193, Chapter 7, “The Destruction of ‘Lives Not Worth Living,’” Racial Hygiene, by Dr. Robert N. Proctor.

[20]  “Brack, Viktor, Colonel, SS (1905-1948).  Official in the Fuhrer chancellery; took part in setting up extermination camps in Poland; hanged at Landsberg prison, 2 June 1948.”  See page 462, Dramatis Personae, The SS:  Alibi of a Nation, 1922-1945, by Gerald Reitlinger.

[21]  “Wirth, Christian, Lieutenant Colonel, SS.  Head of an organization of four extermination camps for Jews in Poland under Odilo Globecnik, whom he accompanied to Trieste in September 1943; said to have been killed by Tito’s partisans; but he may be alive.”  See page 480, Dramatis Personae, The SS:  Alibi of a Nation, 1922-1945, by Gerald Reitlinger.

[22]  See page 71, Chapter 2, “Euthanasia:  Direct Medical Killing,” The Nazi Doctors, by Robert Jay Lifton.

[23]  See page 309, Chapter 12, “The Final Solution:  Overall Planning,” The Holocaust, by Leni Yahil.

[24]  On June 22, 1941, Adolf Hitler hurled 3,300,000 German troops against the Soviet Union, commencing the greatest land war in modern times and, the land war that would decide the land campaign for the entire Second World War.

[25]  See page 191, Chapter 7, “The Destruction of Lives ‘Not Worth Living,’” Racial Hygiene, by Robert N. Proctor.

[26]  See page 291, “euthanasia,” Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary, a Merriam-Webster.

* * * * *

Bibliography

Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary, A Merriam-Webster, G. & C. Merriam Company, Springfield, Mass., 1979.

Albertson, Mark, On History:  A Treatise, Tate Publishing & Enterprises, LLC, Mustang, Oklahoma, 2009.

Andrews, Wayne, Editor, Concise Dictionary of American History, Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, 1962.  Originally published, 1940.

Conot, Robert E., Justice at Nuremberg, Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc., New York, NY., 1983.

Friedlander, Henry, The Origins of Nazi Genocide:  From Euthanasia to the Final Solution, The University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 1995.

Glass, James M., Life Unworthy of Life, A New Republic Book, Basic Books, New York, NY., 1997.

Goldston, Robert, The Life and Death of Nazi Germany, Fawcett Publications, Inc., Greenwich, Ct., 1967.

Grant, Madison, Chairman, New York Trustee, American Museum of Natural History; Councilor, American Geographical Society, The Passing of the Great Race, or, The Racial Basis of European History, Centenary Edition, Ostara Publications, 2016,  ostarapublications.com  First published in 1916 by Charles Scribner’s Sons.  Reprinted in 1918, 1921 and 1936.

Hitler, Adolf, Mein Kampf, Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, Mass, 1943.  Originally published by Verlag FRZ, KHER NACHF, G.M.B.H., 1925.

Kuhl, Stefan, The Nazi Connection:  Eugenics, American Racism and German National Socialism, Oxford University Press, New York, Oxford, 1994.

Lifton, Robert Jay, The Nazi Doctors:  Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide, Basic Books, Inc., Publishers, New York, 1986.

Proctor, Robert, Racial Hygiene:  Medicine Under the Nazis, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1988.

Reitlinger, Gerald, The SS:  Alibi of a Nation, 1922-1945, Arms and Armour Press, London, UK., 1981.

Williamson, Gordon, The SS:  Hitler’s Instrument of Terror, Motorbooks International Publishers & Wholesalers, Osceola, Wisc., 1994.

Yahil, Leni, The Holocaust:  The Fate of European Jewry, 1932-1945, Oxford University Press, Inc., New York, NY., 1990.

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