Michael Hoffman: Hitler’s magical thinking and suicidal invasion of Russia

2 star comment on Michael Hoffman’s book, Adolf Hitler: Enemy of the German People and Hoffman’s response:

William J. Thistlethwaite

Haven’t read the book. I’m basing my opinion on 3 or 4 of Hoffman’s newsletters that preview this material and my own research into the challenge he poses. Mr Hoffman prides himself on being a gadfly to the Right, not afraid to harass their sacred cows when he senses their pet projects are grazing on erroneous grass. There’s much to admire about such an independent and courageous stance. Defending Cromwell against champions of the Restoration was one example. Calling out Hitler for initiating the Night of the Long Knives was another. The latter material seems to have become a chapter in the present book. Was Hitler’s motivation in this blood-letting purely political and ego driven or were there legitimate national concerns? At the time I accepted Hoffman’s arguments as any good student would who knew he didn’t know as much about the subjects as his trusted teacher. Then came the two-issue attack on Hitler’s war against the Soviet Union and I balked. …

Michael Hoffman

You parrot the familiar excuse for Hitler’s suicidal invasion: “Stalin was about to launch an imminent invasion on Germany.” You insist that this is true. Actually, the jury is out on that contention. It is heavily disputed.

Nonetheless, you and many of the fuhrer’s defenders like you, are evading our main argument: Adolf Hitler, in the words of his combat officer Kurt Meyer, was “the gambler at the map table.” He gambled that his ill-prepared, under-armed, poorly supplied military would conquer the vast space known as Russia in three months! When that suicidally lunatic notion did not materialize by September, 1941, he insisted Moscow would fall by December. There was never a snowball’s chance in you-know-where of that happening. It was such a fantastic misreading of what Hitler ignorantly derided as the “Asiatic hordes” of the Soviet Union, that one looks for an answer in the occult training he received, and the drugs he was ingesting, to fathom how any leader could be so grotesquely reckless and incompetent.

Even if the hypothesis that Stalin was going to imminently attempt to sustain a projection of an enormous military invasion force across the vast Soviet territory between Moscow and the German border, were indeed correct, a wise German leader would have done to Stalin’s forces what Stalin did to Hitler’s—allow the wobbly supply lines, the incredible distances, the non-existent roads, the Russian winter, and the insurmountable difficulties for quartermaster generals of supplying an army, to defeat the Reds, spearheaded by a German soldiery and Luftwaffe fighting close to their supplies and transport.

The argument that seeks to exculpate Hitler of his mass suicide “Operation Barbarossa” rests upon the claim that he was compelled by circumstances to wage an offensive war against a presumptive attack by the USSR, and that such a war was the only war he could have waged under the circumstances.  This contention violates every principle of military strategy. The fact is, had he a Carl Von Clausewitz on his staff, he would have been informed that the German military, fighting a two-front war already (in western Europe and Britain, and in Africa), could not overcome the Soviet empire over the distances involved.

Though the Germans killed vast numbers of Russians in 1941, vast numbers were available for replacement, whereas the German “Ostheer” that invaded Russia and suffered 180,000 killed just in the first three months, and kept losing ever more in the months ahead, had very few replacements. By January 1942 that army would never be seen again. Only an ever-dwindling ghost of itself would be available.

In my book I quote the sources that show that Hitler’s generals who were in charge of supplying the Ostheer, stated to him by the end of 1941, that the army could no longer be adequately supplied, the war was lost, and all that was left was a holding action awaiting the potential development of the super weapons. This Masada-like catastrophe had occurred six months after Hitler ordered the invasion!

Even more disgusting is the experience of front line officers traveling to the Wolf’s Lair attempting to inform the fuhrer of the desperate condition of the troops and the dire military situation. When they arrived, Jodl and Keitel and the others of Oberkommando der Wehrmacht, warned them about telling the truth to Hitler, how he would exhibit intense outbursts of anger in the face of the facts. Rather, they suggested his “mood be managed” with sanitized reports. The soothing of the prima donna dictating the outcome of the war, was more important than conveying an accurate account of the situation of the freezing, starving and dying German youth on the Russian front.

This was a front that was obligated to Hitler’s magical thinking. Time and again, low-ranking German officers and enlisted men reported to the high command that they had little or no ammunition, food, tanks, transport, spare parts, or winter clothing. They were told in response that these were merely perceptions engendered in their minds due to a failure of their will. If they possessed the necessary will they could power through these obstacles, to victory.

My thesis has been challenged on the grounds that Hitler was a practical man, not an occultist, and that he did not receive occult training. Yet, many of us who have encountered the New Age mentality in the 21st century, with its affinity for “positive thinking” (an undoubted virtue), know how often this virtue crosses the line into magical thinking, the vice of the occult. The black magic concealed under this garb consists in the belief that the imposition of the magician’s will on nature, shall alter reality itself in the process.

This is the definition of the occult in the sense in which Hitler imbibed it from the milieu of Mirandolian mysticism that shrouded central Europe like a noxious fog in the 1920s, ‘30s and ‘40s, as practiced by Eckart, the Thule, Julius Evola, Schertel and many dozens of persons it would not be a stretch to term sorcerers. I am cognizant that people have difficulty assenting to the datum that magical thinking exists as a fixture of executive leadership, or that Hitler had been completely susceptible to it.

However, when one studies Operation Barbarossa factually, apart from the mystification entailed by the noble romance of the “crusade against Bolshevism,” as well as the sycophantic excuse-making for Hitler’s reckless ineptitude, it is confirmed. A truthful analysis stripped of all illusions, reveals that he had no military grounds for believing Russia could be conquered in 1941 or 1942.

The book:

Adolf Hitler: Enemy of the German People Paperback – September 1, 2019 by Michael Hoffman

 

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