I use this blog as a soap box to preach (ahem... to talk :-) about subjects that interest me.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

John Kerry's Negationism

Less than an hour ago, I saw the American Secretary of State John Kerry on TV.  Talking about Bashar Al Assad, he stated something like "Since the use of poisonous gases was banned after WWI, only Hitler and Saddam Hussein used them".

He "forgot" Italy and Japan.  Everybody can condemn Nazi Germany and Saddam.  But it wouldn't be proper to criticise two modern allies, would it?

Italy dropped mustard gas on Ethiopia in 1935, when Mussolini decided to give to Italy's king the additional title of Emperor of Ethiopia.  According to Wikipedia, 150,000 people were killed, but even if you don't consider Wikipedia as a reliable source of information, it is clear that Italy killed many Ethipians with chemical warfare.

Still according to Wikipedia, Japan used chemical warfare in China in many occasions.

Apparently, for fear of retaliation, Germany made very limited use of gases during WWII.  It doesn't seem entirely convincing because, by the time the allies had landed in Normandy, Nazi Germany had little to lose.  In any case, Cyclon-B was used extensively in concentration camps to kill scores of people.

In conclusion, all three Axis powers used chemical warfare before or during WWII.  Because of their racist ideologies or perhaps to avoid retaliation in kind, the gases were only used on blacks, Asians, and what the Germans classified as Untermenschen (subhumans: Jews, homosexuals, Romani people, and others).

I don't know about Japan, but I know that, even before the end of WWII, Italy was seen as a key piece of the frontier between Capitalism in the West and Communism in the East.  It would have not been convenient for the Allies to institute an Italian version of the Nuremberg trials, especially considering that Italy's population included many Socialists and Communists

That's why all atrocities committed by Fascist Italy befor and during WWII were quietly ignored, including the gassing of thousands of Ethiopians (or the atrocities committed in Albania).  The myth of the "good Italian soldier" was created and most Italians were happy to believe it.

John Kerry is only continuing the tradition of neatly dividing the world in goodies and badies according to what is convenient.  He could have just stayed quiet, though...

No comments:

Post a Comment