Sunday, November 27, 2011
[Start][Previously on]

The Shadow of Heidegger

In a situation that was everything but clear, Rainer wasn't in a condition to be so. He almost polished off the bottle of wine and, between convulsions, throat clearings and expectorations, he tried to link a series of events that everyone knew and, in turn, being incapable of making sense of, ignored. It wasn't even the case of one series of events, but of many that crossed each other, that contradicted each other, that self-annihilated, that established ephemeral and absurd, or openly indecipherable, pacts, and, consequently, impossible to accept or deny easily. Rainer could depreciate my fate without factical excess, but I always knew that the madness of the SA was that: a madness, a sick chaos, skewered by uncountable plagues: the ambition of power, of violence, arbitrary hatred, sexual ambiguity, gluttony, unsated thirst for blood, poorly lead, the struggle against invincible enemies: the Wehrmacht, the Krupps, the Gestapo, the SS, Goering, Himmler, Goebbels and even the Führer himself. Those ambitions lead them to gather three million men. But there wasn't between them the roots of a strong idea, of an identity. They were compared to roast beef: brown on the outside, red on the inside. They were, it was said, communists. Rainer Minder a communist! Even Von Papen could say, lying but harming them: "We did not make an anti-Marxist revolution, to now make a Marxist one". All that frenzy was centered on the personality of Ernst Röhm. This man, fat like Goering, brutal like Goering, and adventuresome like only he could be, wanted to replace two things that were irreplaceable in Germany: the army and Hitler. Toward those ends he threatened the high bourgeoisie and proclaimed the need for a second stage to the revolution; what was missing, he bellowed, from the national socialist revolution, was a strictly socialist, popular, stage. The SA were no more than a popular national army. They totally ignored Marx. And they were as much enemies of the Russian revolution as were Hitler or Goebbels or Rosenberg. It all came down to a fight for power. Röhm was mad, drove his followers crazy and underrated the Führer. He thought he had done so much for him (something, strictly, correct) that now he should collect, inheriting his position, by opening a second stage that required a new Führer: him, a new army: the SA, and by declaiming some vagueness about agrarian reform, the expropriation of large businesses and the socialist stage of the national revolution. His people (his festive and destructive student organizations) controlled the universities. And there amidst that chaos, of that stubbornness, of that coven of blind ambition, the greatest philosopher of the twentieth century installed himself, Heidegger, the Master of Germany. Was Heidegger a Marxist, a national populist? Was he seeking a second stage to the revolution? Did he want to replace the Führer of the beautiful hands with the abdomen full of beer, petulance, and venison, of Ernst Röhm? No, but here there was a - at least shallow - explanation: to be Rektor of Freiburg Heidegger had to make a pact with the SA, with Röhm. I can say how far his illusions reached to. I know he resigned with exceptional timing. As if he scented the massacre or he knew of it firsthand. It wasn't like that with Rainer.


had to make a pack with the SA, with Röhm.

"Pact". Tho' a pact or pack with Roehm-- rather nasty bidness eh. Ive read Der Fuhrer himself wept when he gave orders to kill Roehm and the other labor-nazis on the "Night OTLK"
Fixed it. Thanks.

I've had the entire translation edited, and I've updated the posts with most of editor's suggested fixes.
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