Armed Hostilities

“Rivers of Blood and Money” Article by Burden

Summary of the Source

The colonization and Nazi activities during the Second World War may seem separate events that took unique courses. However, Burden argues that it is possible to draw a parallel between the two. It is easy to identify commonalities in these events. When the British and German powers moved to Africa and other regions in South America and parts of Asia, one of the most common ideologies that they used was the superiority of the race. The ideology made it easy for these colonial powers to eliminate any form of opposition in these foreign lands using brute force. In East and West Africa, the British forces killed thousands of locals who tried to resist colonialism. In southwest Africa, Germans used the same force to ensure that they exerted their control in the region. These events were precursors of the holocaust in Germany (Pawlikowski 6). The European community had embraced a feeling that the inferior races did not deserve the rights enjoyed by the majority (superior) race.

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Evaluation of the Source

The article takes a different approach when analyzing the issue of anti-Semitism and events before and during the holocaust. When the European powers came to Africa, they emphasized the concept of racial superiority. Many Africans were massacred in their land as the colonial powers took control. The same pattern was witnessed in various other parts of the world that were colonized by the European powers. The culture of eliminating opposition or people considered to be less deserving was developed long before the Second World War and it was not uniquely German. It was common in the United Kingdom, France, and Russia (Shaw 13). The source explains that events during the war only provided a perfect opportunity for the German rulers to eliminate a section of the society that was considered undesirable by the majority. In Africa, the colonial masters justified these murders by stating that their focus was to crush any resistance to their territorial expansion.

The world order at that time made it possible to commit such atrocities without any consequences (Pawlikowski 5). As the author notes, one can easily compare the Herero Genocide with the Holocaust. It explains why a section of the political class in Germany has rejected the fact that genocide ever occurred in the country. To them, events that happened before and during the Second World War were not out of the ordinary. It had happened in the past (during the colonization) and it had no consequences. It was strange for the perpetrators that the world now demanded justice for victims of the holocaust. The source primarily warns against allowing social injustice to be deeply entrenched into society. If it is not addressed in time and a proper manner, it may have serious consequences in society, such as the holocaust in Germany.

Relationship to Other Sources

This source, just like many other sources reviewed in this report, traces historical events that led to the holocaust. This article agrees with the source Genocide as Social Practice: Reorganizing Society under the Nazis and Argentina’s Military Juntas that holocaust was made possible because of the culture of superiority that had been created in this society.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Possible Use of the Source

The source will be used in the argumentative essay to explain the possible reasons why the society in Germany did very little to avert the holocaust. The process of arresting Jews was facilitated by local people. Society had become so radicalized that it was difficult for the society to stop the Nazi government from committing the atrocities.

Works Cited

Burden, Thomas. “Rivers of Blood and Money: The Herero Genocide in German Southwest Africa.” The Student Researcher, vol. 2, no. 2, 2017, pp. 2-25.

Pawlikowski, John. “Christian Anti-Semitism: Past History, Present Challenges: Reflections in Light of Mel Gibson’s the Passion of the Christ.” Journal of Religion & Film, vol. 8, no 1, 2016, pp. 1-15.

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Shaw, Martin. “Book Review: Genocide as Social Practice: Reorganizing Society under the Nazis and Argentina’s Military Juntas.” Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal, vol. 9, no. 3, 2016, pp. 183-187.

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