Usually, historical revisionist arguments of the “Hitler Was Actually A Man Of Peace” variety are confined to the kind of poorly designed and little-read white supremacist and neo-Nazi websites that Holocaust Museum shooting suspect James Von Brunn patronized.
But that doesn’t account for the mainstream media’s token Hitler sympathizer, Pat Buchanan. To mark the 70th anniversary of the Nazi invasion of Poland, Buchanan, a frequent commentator on MSNBC, has written a syndicated column entitled “Did Hitler Want War?”
Summarizing the argument of the column — which appears, among other places, on Yahoo! News — is almost beside the point. But here goes:
According to Buchanan, Hitler’s invasion of Poland — which led to Britain’s declaration of war on Germany, and the start of World War II — was motivated merely by Germany’s desire to regain the city of Danzig, which had been given to Poland in the Versailles Treaty. Had Poland simply negotiated with Hitler, war could have been averted. In fact, Hitler wasn’t bent on world, or even European, domination. He would have been happy with just Danzig, Austria, and the Sudetenland, you see. Hitler “wanted to end the war in 1940, almost two years before the trains began to roll to the camps.” It was only thanks to the aggression of Britain, Russia, and the U.S. that the conflict was expanded. So, goes the implication, any deaths that occurred after 1940 — including the 6 million that comprised the Holocaust — are on the Allies’ heads.
In fact, the column is just a bite-size version of an argument Buchanan made last year in book form. (Really, it’s a chance to tout the book.)
It’s not shocking that Hitler apologists exist. And this is hardly the first time we’ve seen evidence that Buchanan is one of them. But it boggles the mind that a person who believes this has been given such a prominent media platform, such that his writing appears on one of the web’s most highly-trafficked news site, and he himself appears regularly on a major — and supposedly liberal-leaning! — cable news station.
An MSNBC spokesman did not respond when asked by TPMmuckraker about the network’s decision to continue to showcase a Hitler apologist.