All Quiet on the Western front- All Quiet on the Eastern Front ?

All Quiet on the Western front- All Quiet on the Eastern Front ?

After football became  a desaster for German national pride at the World Cup in Qatar, German minds are now proud of the following news:

„Nine nominations: German Netflix film “ All Quiet on the Western front “ (Im Westen nichts Neues) on course for an Oscar“

The probably right film at the right time, which maybe will it to Hollywood and the Oscar heaven as a German production. It is interesting that Karl Krauss’s “The Last Days of Mankind” (Die letzten Tage der Menschheit) is also booming at the moment. Critical spirits see themselves on the upswing. But it is foreseeable that everyone complains that the other side did not understand „the actual and real message“ of the work. The question is how that is interpreted. As a lasting reminder against the so-called „green bellicism“ of Toni Hofreither, Strack-Zack-Zack-Zimmermann, Habeck and Baerbock, against western arms deliveries, „Western value-liberal crusade ideology“, against war, the military and weapons in general and as such, as a helpless pacifist appeal „Down with the arms“ of a Suttner and world peace appeals like the Pope for world peace, urbi et orbi , loving one’s enemy and turning the other cheek, as a plea for a ceasefire, against a „Verdun blood mill“, as a statement against Putin’s war of aggression, the Russian „genocide“ and the new Holodomor against the Ukrainians, etc. ? Already foreseeable , who interprets what and how. Or blood and action fans don’t interpret anything into it, but find the carnage and the orgies of violence just awesome like in a video game.

And then how do you interpret the real Scholz now? At first he was insulted by Russian television as a proto-Germanic Nazi and threatened with nuclear war and atomic blows against Germany, but in the meantime he was again called the Prince of Peace because he delayed arms deliveries and in the USA some spoke already of a „German problem“ and a „German question“ and Scholz is now again under criticism after the new arms deliveries or praised by others.

Now that Scholz has linked the delivery of German Lepard tanks/”Leos” to Abraham deliveries, the USA are now considering delivering the M1 Abrahams. It was said before that the Abrahams would be no good, but suddenly and overnight they fit very well, although a few US generals saw this as an excuse for Biden and the USA not to get engaged to much in the Ukraine war as well as others claimed a hesitating German salami slice and appeasement policy ofScholz and the Leos. It is also strange that now only 14Leos  from the Bundeswehr should be delivered After all, the German armaments industry declared that it could deliver 139 without resorting to Bundeswehr stocks. Poland also wants to deliver only 14. The Czech Republic, even under its presidential candidate, an ex-NATO general, none at all. Turkey and Greece want to keep their 500 each for the upcoming conflict between the two NATO partners over the Aegean Islands on the anniversary of the 100th anniversary of the Lausanne Treaty and Attatürk-Turkey. In any case, Melnyk thanks him for the tank „double bang“ and now calls for F16s and fighter planes. Did Scholz not want to deliver Leos and thus unintentionally triggered the double bang or did he want to let the USA lead the way as a leading power so that the Russian anger does not only hit Germany and you have the Americans on board, which others criticize as a lack of leading power, as the SPD – Commission for International Politics avoids the term „leading power“(Führungsmacht)  in its new strategy paper, but speaks of „leading role“. ( Führungsrolle )? Yesterday the Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba was on BBC Hardtalk, who suddenly declared that there was no German problem and no German question. What the Poles would probably say differently and a number of Ukrainians would probably think so too. So how „All Quiet on the Western front“ will be interpreted in the West and East by and within the political camps is predictable.

It is also interesting how Bundeswehr soldiers feel about the film. Do They see confirmed in their mission to defend the Free West, or rather accused of blind obedience, of cheering patriotism? And to what extent do they actually stand for these democratic and liberal values, which they are supposed to defend, after a number of Bundeswehr scandals. Also interesting is the detail of today’s article in Jungle World about the neo-Marxist Institute for Social Research at the Goethe University in Frankfurt, , the Frankfurt School of Horkheimer and Adorno, which was briefly mentioned and which celebrated its 100th anniversary on January 23, 2023. According to this, the Bundeswehr commissioned a study at the Institute for Social Research to examine the democracy compatibility of members of the Bundeswehr.

„In April 2021, just in time for the anniversary preparations, the sociologist Stephan Lessenich finally took over the management of the institute. Lessenich had previously been a professor in Munich, where he was also involved in founding the left-wing micro-party Mut. He is also a member of the scientific advisory board of the anti-globalisation network Attac. He outlined his plans for the reorientation of the institute in a short article for the journal Soziologie: The institute should be “open to new things, to external impulses, to the questions of others”, among other things by adding “to the classic canon of critical theory” queer-feminist and post-humanist approaches, anti-racist and decolonial perspectives”. The “Petite Auberge Aufbruch” (small inn departure) could then arise within sight of the old Grand Hotel Abgrund – this is how Georg Lukács polemically characterized Critical Theory. It remains open how this claim is to be met at the institute in future. In an interview that Lessenich gave to Westdeutscher Rundfunk in April 2022, there was little evidence of the propagated spirit of optimism. Lessenich’s comments on the Russian attack on Ukraine sounded less like a renewed social theory and more like outdated left-wing anti-imperialism: he rejected German arms deliveries to Ukraine and warned against an „absolute demonization of Putin.“ According to Lessenich, „this man“ is a problem, but „the one-sided demonization“ only leads to „undermining the discussion in this country about rearmament, about military spending, about appropriate defense policy.“

It might have been worth taking a look at the first generation of critical theory at this point. Based on the experience of National Socialism and the crimes of Stalinism, Horkheimer and Adorno were convinced of the need to defend the bourgeois state against its authoritarian competitors. A study commissioned by the German Armed Forces had already been carried out at the Institute for Social Research in the 1950s. The aim was to develop methods for selecting suitable – first and foremost: democratic – applicants for an officer’s career. At the same time, Horkheimer’s and Adorno’s texts from this period provide information that they had no illusions about the violent character of existing society.

A central paradigm of the Frankfurt School was the so-called German „authoritarian character“, which was seen to be particularly manifest in the military and German militarism and which was hoped to be changed by means of reeducation, with the former Merkel adviser General a. D. Vad also sees the roots of a post-war German structural pacifism here and calls for a Rereeduaction. It remains unclear how to prevent a structural militarism instead of a structural pacifism. It is also unclear: did this happen under the leadership of General Bauddissin and the Inner leadership (Innere Führung) ? Are the critieras for a democratic officer of the Frankfurt School and the Commission  still the norm today? Has the MAD adopted the criteria of the Frankfurt School? Especially since in the Bundeswehr there is still conflict within the troops between supporters of the inner leadership and the traditionalists, who see themselves more committed to the Wehrmacht and warrior virtues.

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