Warts & All.

Discussion in 'Historiography' started by von Poop, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    As yet another thread with a connection to them goes down the toilet, my thoughts turn once again to the fact that as a community, We really are rubbish at discussing anything SS.

    So that's an entire chunk of WW2 history which is often missing or disrupted on WW2Talk.

    Said it before, and I'll say it again:


    • They happened.
    • Those of us who run this place will always keep Neos, proper fanboys and real nut-jobs down. It's an ongoing part of what we do.
    • Pretty much the entire membership is fully aware of what the Nazis were, and what they did. and I just don't get the constant need in an adult forum to remind us that Adolf was very very naughty whenever some detail of the dodgier side of the war comes up.
    • It's become almost inevitable that any SS-related thread gets distracted by accusation or suspicion. We almost never draw any conclusions on historical/operational/technical details as everyone eventually slinks off sick of the shouting.
    • The discussion of such things does not automatically make one a Nazi. Nor does some slight disagreement over details.
    • An accusatory tone re anyone who wishes to discuss these areas is about the most serious attack one can make in WW2 history - and yet many of us do it casually, and I've rarely seen it done in a justified manner to a new person who has yet to settle in.
    Serious question:

    Why are we so crap at this subject, as a forum?
    I get so many disconcerted messages from old lags and new blokes on this theme, but it never breaks out into the open as people apparently appear afraid of being accused of Holocaust Denial or having a little Swastika-draped shrine in the living room if they express an opinion or interest...
    Why are we eventually so consistently rude to modern German joiners? Or anyone expressing any depth of knowledge on the SS who has the temerity to not somehow constantly apologise for that knowledge?
    We've lost many more serious posters to this than any number of fanboys we've ever encountered.

    What is that all about?


    History:
    Warts & All?
    Or filtered & emasculated?
    What's the preference?


    I vote for warts.


    ~A
     
    Slipdigit and Paul Reed like this.
  2. Jonathan Ball

    Jonathan Ball It's a way of life.

    Warts. Everytime.
     
  3. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    Warts & All. Any thing else is censorship isnt it.

    Kyle
     
  4. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    If we can't discuss the Waffen-SS in a grown up & adult manner we cant call ourself a WW2 forum.
     
  5. LesCM19

    LesCM19 "...lets rock!"

    For the sake of completeness it has to be allowed, otherwise the subject goes underground or goes to a less well moderated forum.
     
  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Warts


    We all know and are very aware of the terrible atrocities and respect all persons affected.

    We must discuss all aspects (the fruit loops will be weeded out)

    We must remember many persons come to this forum and have little knowledge of the era and are on a learning curve and perhaps their gender of chat is quite modern which could cause a few raised eyebrows.





    Encourage,discuss,learn,educate and be educated

    If you don't refresh you become a closure.


    regards
    Clive
     
  7. Paul Reed

    Paul Reed Ubique MOD

    If we can't discuss the Waffen-SS in a grown up & adult manner we cant call ourself a WW2 forum.

    That sums it up for me.
     
  8. Bond

    Bond Senior Member

    I really enjoy this forum with its main focus on the British and the allies during WWII which is a nice change from many other forums, but to have a WWII forum where any mention of the Germans and the SS in particular is liable to cause outrage and anger is hard to understand, though I was not there during the war and I do understand that for some there is cause to "hate" the Nazis and all they represent. My wife is of German Jewish origin and she finds certain items distasteful, but even she thinks that the Germans had smart uniforms, in spite of an unknown number of her relatives having almost certainly lost their lives during the Nazi period. There is an attraction to collect such items to many people who do not otherwise exhibit any signs of liking the Nazis and what they stood for. I have some WWII German items in my collection, mostly tropical/DAK but most of my collection is British headgear, tunics and badges with pride of place going to my Fathers medals, cap badge and some pictures of him in the desert from his service during WWII.

    For those who don't want to talk about the Germans, I can only suggest that they ignore such threads rather than have a go at those who wish to discuss all aspects of the war. There are plenty of threads on here in which for any number of reasons I do not participate, mostly lack of knowledge, but I certainly don't feel the need to attack any that do.

    Probably not making myself popular with the above, but it is my right to do so and for that I thank those who fought for my right to be able to do so.

    Warts & all for me.
     
  9. At Home Dad (Returning)

    At Home Dad (Returning) Well-Known Member

    Well, going for warts everytime is accepting that
    it will all kick off eventually and be a destructive
    thread. It always happens. I dont even think it
    has much to do with the SS - it's more like several
    'cultural clashes' occurring at once. Usually some kind
    of USA/UK clash too, quite often.

    I truly think the final solution(*) is that the SS should
    get their own sub-section of the forum, which is a free
    fire zone and comes with a huge warning of potential
    for out-right thread self-destruction.




    (*see what I did there?)
     
  10. KevinC

    KevinC Slightly wierd

    some people take life a bit to seriously. As mentioned by others: they happened, they were dealt with
    [​IMG]
     
    von Poop likes this.
  11. Callisto

    Callisto Twitter ye not

    Warts and all, and why not? A wider approach can't surely threaten the raison d'etre of the forum.

    As a general observation, people who judge or attack others without any proper justification only expose their own fears. A misplaced fear perhaps that their opinions or beliefs will be dismissed or negated just by someone else taking a different approach. i've experienced something of this on here: for some it will always be simpler just to criticise negatively than to really engage. It is admirable to defend a truth, but closed minds are truly sad things to behold.

    By not discussing the enemy in anything other than the most simplistic terms, in my opinion we are in danger of relegating them in the future to the level of a bogeyman. For instance it takes more than information about atrocities and the logistics and facts thereof to understand why sections of humanity proceeded upon this course, and still does. i want to understand why, not only how and how many.

    from my experience this site is free from true neos (rabid or subtle) who inhabit others so i guess for any forum it comes down to this
    how much do you trust the moderators?


    As yet another thread with a connection to them goes down the toilet, my thoughts turn once again to the fact that as a community, We really are rubbish at discussing anything SS.

    So that's an entire chunk of WW2 history which is often missing or disrupted on WW2Talk.

    Said it before, and I'll say it again:


    • They happened.
    • Those of us who run this place will always keep Neos, proper fanboys and real nut-jobs down. It's an ongoing part of what we do.
    • Pretty much the entire membership is fully aware of what the Nazis were, and what they did. and I just don't get the constant need in an adult forum to remind us that Adolf was very very naughty whenever some detail of the dodgier side of the war comes up.
    • It's become almost inevitable that any SS-related thread gets distracted by accusation or suspicion. We almost never draw any conclusions on historical/operational/technical details as everyone eventually slinks off sick of the shouting.
    • The discussion of such things does not automatically make one a Nazi. Nor does some slight disagreement over details.
    • An accusatory tone re anyone who wishes to discuss these areas is about the most serious attack one can make in WW2 history - and yet many of us do it casually, and I've rarely seen it done in a justified manner to a new person who has yet to settle in.
    Serious question:

    Why are we so crap at this subject, as a forum?
    I get so many disconcerted messages from old lags and new blokes on this theme, but it never breaks out into the open as people apparently appear afraid of being accused of Holocaust Denial or having a little Swastika-draped shrine in the living room if they express an opinion or interest...
    Why are we eventually so consistently rude to modern German joiners? Or anyone expressing any depth of knowledge on the SS who has the temerity to not somehow constantly apologise for that knowledge?
    We've lost many more serious posters to this than any number of fanboys we've ever encountered.

    What is that all about?


    History:
    Warts & All?
    Or filtered & emasculated?
    What's the preference?


    I vote for warts.


    ~A
     
    Jonathan Ball and Owen like this.
  12. Heimbrent

    Heimbrent Well-Known Member

    Well, going for warts everytime is accepting that
    it will all kick off eventually and be a destructive
    thread. It always happens. I dont even think it
    has much to do with the SS - it's more like several
    'cultural clashes' occurring at once. Usually some kind
    of USA/UK clash too, quite often.

    I truly think the final solution(*) is that the SS should
    get their own sub-section of the forum, which is a free
    fire zone and comes with a huge warning of potential
    for out-right thread self-destruction.

    (*see what I did there?)


    As German speaking member on here I encounter cultural clashes all the time, also in view of historiography.
    I'm not sure whether your final solution works though. I think it makes more sense to have one section for all the Third Reich matters, incl. SS and Wehrmacht, mainly because all are often closely related and intertwined.

    Why this section should be free fire zone I cannot understand. Like others suggested it should be possible to discuss the German side without members being thrown into the right-wing-nazi-fanboy pot - my experience has shown otherwise. While many on this forum appreciate a serious discussion, there is usually someone questioning motives and suggesting hidden agendas. I have been on here for some time now, yet I still feel compelled to assure I have no ideological ties to the Third Reich whenever I decide to join a discussion about the subject I focus my research on, i.e. national socialism and the German Army.
    Having to defend myself for this (yes, one regularly has to defend oneself when posting about NS-related subjects) is so annoying that I sometimes wonder why I still bother. I know that some members would be fairly content to see me leave; quite frankly, I have considered it - and it is the reason why I barely post nowadays.

    If the German section will indeed be a free fire zone, rest assured that no serious discussion will ever flourish there, and no serious member will feel like putting their time and energy into it in the long run.

    To answer your question, Adam, I am obviously for warts & all since I know too little about UK/Commonwealth subjects to contribute anything.
     
  13. At Home Dad (Returning)

    At Home Dad (Returning) Well-Known Member

    I was trying to suggest that as the particular aspect (SS)
    is so contentious, it should have it's own container. I dont
    believe it belongs in the axis Forces section alone, as it can
    affect that area. If it has it's own little corner, even if it is
    within the Axis Forces area, it would be better in my opinion.
    Anything SS goes in there. If the thread doesn't erupt into
    squabbling then perhaps it can be moved to a 'wider' area
    for further adult discussion.

    I only suggested making a free fire zone as that would be far
    easier to moderate. And, I think I speak for the vast majority
    of the long time regular posters here, that I fully trust the
    decisions of the moderators and of their general outlook on
    WW2 and on life in general. Apart from the overwhelming knowledge
    on this forum, I think it's the moderators who actually make it
    all work so well, seemingly effortlessly and I applaud them.

    The fact that VP started the thread shows that that there
    can be a problem. And look how it began - because the original
    poster of the 'attic find' thread ended his opening post with 'Enjoy!'

    We must accept that to some people it was the wrong choice
    of word and to others it is downright insulting. (Some people
    may have 'enjoyed' the thread more if there was a bullet hole
    over the heart, for example!). And that's all it is, a wrong word
    meant in the right way which then erupts into a cultural clash.

    I was looking forward for the potential of discovering the story
    of the uniforms original owner. Sounds like he was interesting career
    wise. I was hoping to hear about the US soldiers story and the usual
    detective work we see here which might have ended up telling us
    where the SS chap surrendered etc. But one word at the end of the
    first post killed that. But also, how do you discuss the taking of war
    trophies which were obviously only taken because of their notoriety?
    I notice he also had a HJ armband, as we know their notoriety about
    fighting to the death etc. Discussing that aspect is a minefield!

    That's why I think the SS should get their own section. Let it become
    the area for 'adults'. Let it also be the area where sensitivity is a weakness.
    (They'd have like that!), but which cuts both ways. That way it's easier
    to self-moderate and it's up to those with an interest in SS to make it work.
    I can see something like the Recce section or even Drews 1940 section and
    working well.

    It's an issue of polar opposites and that always brings about a clash of some sort!
     
  14. Jonathan Ball

    Jonathan Ball It's a way of life.

    All interesting points on the creation of the SS sub-forum. However, would a subject posted there not also appear in the Portal page that lists the latest posts that I think many people use as an entry point into the forum?

    I still believe the issue should be either warts and all or not at all.
     
  15. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    Some interesting suggestions since my visit earlier but creating some sort of sub-forum for the SS,and this is purely my opinion, would cause some members offence in general, if people object to a few photographs of a uniform are they going to accept an SS sub forum on their favourite forum?
    Is the creation of a subforum a little like `not in my neighbourhood`its okay if its hidden away not in plain view and does`nt interfere with the mainstream posting?
    A little like what Heimbrent said regarding their knowledge of UK/Commonwealth subjects to contribute anything at all, by my own admission I know nothing about anything in any depth but I am willing to learn but I can do this only if I hear the whole story and I want to learn it here warts and all.

    Kyle
     
  16. Callisto

    Callisto Twitter ye not

    It's an issue of polar opposites and that always brings about a clash of some sort!

    But it isn't really, is it? On this forum?

    not if as adults with even the most basic of knowledge in this area, we acknowledge and agree about the crimes, ideology and so forth that's the most important starting point "common ground" in fact.
     
  17. ClankyPencil

    ClankyPencil Senior Member

    Warts

    Encourage,discuss,learn,educate and be educated

    If you don't refresh you become a closure.



    +1

    Consider the difference between a SS uniform and one of Kitcheners well known WW1 recruiting posters.

    The SS is well associated with death camps etc.

    Yet Kitchener's involvement in the 2nd Boer War, and his policies of 'scorched earth' and concentration camps led to the deaths of nearly 25,000 Boer children (roughly 50% of children under 16), and 1 in 4 of the boer population (and also a large number of Black Africans as well) through disease and starvation etc. Although this is not on the scale of the SS, and was probably more through incompetance rather than design, they are still horrendous statistics (The British lost about 8000 soldiers through combat and 14000 from disease in comparison).

    Yet if people were to see either of these items hangin on the back of someone's door, you usually get starkly contrasting reactions.
    For one you can get distate through to total moral outrage, and the other hardly a bat of the eye and in some cases a sense of pride.
    Why the difference in reactions, when both can just as easily be associated with death camps and horrendous loss of life?

    Is it because 'The Victors' usually get to write the histories?

    This for me is why it should be warts and all everytime.
     
  18. At Home Dad (Returning)

    At Home Dad (Returning) Well-Known Member

    we acknowledge and agree about the crimes, ideology and so forth

    You would be surprised! The common argument that starts
    is that the WaffenSS weren't 'them' SS. They were elite
    fighters etc, nothing to do with the camps. Until someone
    points out that they were all SS, full stop, there is no distinction
    under that cap-badge for many people. "Every SS man was a
    bastard" is an often heard phrase from veterans.

    And what about what they were fighting for? Should there be
    discussions about the heroism of SS men? But they were fighting
    on behalf of that organisation and that little man with the tash.
    Their acts were not outstanding courage but mis-guided stupidity,
    fighting for the wrong ('Dark') side... Simple story of Right and Wrong,
    and they were fighting for Wrong. Nothing about 'victors writing the history' - they were on the side of Evil - pure and simple.

    What is it that cannot be discussed about the SS? It seems to me it's
    more about how it's discussed rather than what, and that will always
    come down to the way people post or the viewpoint they hold. Like I said
    earlier, the 'attic find' thread looked to have great potential. But the OP killed it with his last line. How you going to regulate for that? If he gets touchy about it, and wants to flounce off, it's down to him. And I see nothing wrong in Ron's original reply to him. But the touchpaper was lit
    and boudouf, here we are trying to work a way to avoid it. I dont think
    we can avoid it.

    If everyone is happy with warts and all, there shouldn't be
    complaints when it kicks off, just get the popcorn ready :D
     
  19. RosyRedd

    RosyRedd Senior Member

    Warts and all.

    I have also seen an argument about to kick off because (as I think AHD said) the use of a word rankles another member. I seem to remember on one occasion a member, whose first language was not English, was subjected to a whole load of grief because they used "only".

    And of course when one of us doesn't know when to "shut up" and things begin to get personal - that usually helps everything spiral out of control too.

    I would love to read these threads without the latter happening, but disagreement on certain facts and experiences add life to a thread and challenge myths.
     
  20. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    I think that most forum members realise that History, however bad the subject may be, cannot be changed.

    History has to be accepted "Warts and all" and discussed in a rational manner.

    Whilst I can be for or against an Ideology and hold Political Views, this should not enter into Historical research and this I think is the root of any problem when threads are started regarding NSDAP subjects, such as the SS.

    By failing to rationally discuss these subjects we are dismissing a lot of History.

    Regards
    Tom
     

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