True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country

Posted: 2010-06-18 13:50   |  More posts about far-right germany idiots india oddities politics

Photo: Reuters

A select few quotations from a BBC article on Hitler's bizarre popularity in India:

Latest reports say Bollywood is now planning to cash in. A film - Dear Friend Hitler - is due to be released by the end of the year, focusing on the dictator's relationship with his mistress Eva Braun.


It's hard to narrow down what makes the dictator popular in India, but some young people say they are attracted by his "discipline and patriotism".

Most of them are, however, quick to add that they do not approve of his racial prejudices and the Holocaust in which millions of Jews were killed.


Nearly all the booksellers and publishers contacted in India say it is mainly young people who read Mein Kampf. It's not just the autobiography - books on the Nazi leader, T-shirts, bags, bandanas and key-rings are also in demand. A shop in Pune, called Teens, says it sells nearly 100 T-shirts a month with Hitler's image on them.

Dimple Kumari, a research associate in Pune, has not read Mein Kampf but she would wear the Hitler T-shirt out of admiration for him. She calls him "a legend" and tries to put her admiration for him in perspective: "The killing of Jews was not good, but everybody has a positive and negative side."

I have to say, I find this peculiar naivety fascinating. I also can't imagine what it must be like for a Western traveller to be walking down a street in, say, Bangalore, spotting a few people coming towards him clad in Hitler Apparel. Indeed, staying with Bangalore, since it's such a huge IT hub... Should we expect to see originally well-meaning and innocuous (to Indians, that is) photographs of young IT workers on their IBM or Microsoft campus, posing happily with their corporate swipe-cards dangling from from their neck, the strap perfectly framing a portrait of their "Dear Friend Hitler"? Indeed, do such places, renowned for their lack of dress-code in the West, already have a strict dress-code in places like India, in order to prevent such embarrassments? I wonder.

And, before I go, here's another great article from Der Spiegel on the same phenomenon, only this time in Pakistan. Yep, they're at it too. Who knows - perhaps this new-found love for the 20th century's most hated, genocidal dictator will only serve to foster a new friendship of shared values between India and Pakistan, leading to a stable peace! Surely no harm could come of future generations of two of the world's most antagonistic and unstable nuclear-countries worshipping a genocidal, maniacal, militaristic dictator!

Brings a whole new sense to that Vonnegut quote...