Saturday, 5 September 2009

Ilya Grigoryevich Ehrenburg and 'The Peoples War against Fascism'

Ilya Grigoryevich Ehrenburg, was a Soviet writer, journalist and propagandist who I must say I'd never heard of before I read a post about him on the Socialist Unity Blog in relation to 'The Peoples War against Fascism' thread; which cast an interesting light on this proposition that some would like us to believe that it was simply a war against fascism. He wrote the following:

"The Germans are not human beings. Henceforth the word German means to us the most terrible curse. From now on the word German will trigger your rifle. We shall not speak any more. We shall not get excited. We shall kill. If you have not killed at least one German a day, you have wasted that day. If you think that that instead of you, the man next to you will kill him, you have not understood the threat. If you do not kill the German, he will kill you. If you cannot kill your German with a bullet, kill him with your bayonet. If there is calm on your part of the front, if you are waiting for the fighting, kill a German before combat. If you leave a German alive, the German will hang a Russian and rape a Russian woman. If you kill one German, kill another - there is nothing more amusing for us than a heap of German corpses. Do not count days; do not count miles. Count only the number of Germans you have killed. Kill the German - this is your old mother's prayer. Kill the German - this is what your children beseech you to do. Kill the German - this is the cry of your Russian earth. Do not waver. Do not let up. Kill."

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