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Who Was “Hitler” Before Hitler? Historical Analogies and the Struggle to Understand Nazism, 1930–1945

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 June 2018

Gavriel D. Rosenfeld*
Fairfield University


Since the turn of the millennium, major political figures around the world have been routinely compared to Adolf Hitler. These comparisons have increasingly been investigated by scholars, who have sought to explain their origins and assess their legitimacy. This article sheds light on this ongoing debate by examining an earlier, but strikingly similar, discussion that transpired during the Nazi era itself. Whereas commentators today argue about whether Hitler should be used as a historical analogy, observers in the 1930s and 1940s debated which historical analogies should be used to explain Hitler. During this period, Anglophone and German writers identified a diverse group of historical villains who, they believed, explained the Nazi threat. The figures spanned a wide range of tyrants, revolutionaries, and conquerors. But, by the end of World War II, the revelation of the Nazis' unprecedented crimes exposed these analogies as insufficient and led many commentators to flee from secular history to religious mythology. In the process, they identified Hitler as Western civilization's new archetype of evil and turned him into a hegemonic analogy for the postwar period. By explaining how earlier analogies struggled to make sense of Hitler, we can better understand whether Hitler analogies today are helping or hindering our effort to understand contemporary political challenges.

Seit der Jahrtausendwende sind Vergleiche zwischen einflussreichen politischen Figuren und Adolf Hitler weltweit gang und gäbe. Diese Vergleiche wurden zunehmend durch Wissenschaftler untersucht, die versucht haben, deren Ursprünge zu erklären sowie deren Legitimität zu bewerten. Der vorliegende Aufsatz beleuchtet diese andauernde Debatte durch die Untersuchung einer früheren, aber auffallend ähnlichen Diskussion, die während der NS-Zeit selbst stattgefunden hat. Während heutzutage Kommentatoren darüber streiten, ob Hitler als eine historische Analogie genutzt werden sollte, debattierten Beobachter in den 1930er und 1940er Jahren darüber, welche historischen Analogien sich dazu eigneten Hitler zu erklären. Während dieser Zeit identifizierten anglophone und deutsche Autoren eine diverse Gruppe historischer Schurken, mit Hilfe derer sie glaubten, die Bedrohung durch den Nationalsozialismus erklären zu können. Diese Figuren beinhalteten eine weite Bandbreite von Tyrannen, Revolutionären und Eroberern. Aber am Ende des Zweiten Weltkrieges wurden diese Analogien mit der Enthüllung der präzedenzlosen NS-Verbrechen als unzulänglich empfunden, was viele Kommentatoren dazu veranlasste, von der säkularen Historie in die religiöse Mythologie zu fliehen. Hitler wurde in diesem Prozess als der neue Archetyp des Bösen innerhalb der westlichen Zivilisation bestimmt und darüber hinaus zu einer hegemonialen Analogie der Nachkriegszeit stilisiert. Indem hier erklärt wird, wie frühere Analogien sich bemühten Hitler zu verstehen, kann auch besser beurteilt werden, ob heutige Analogien zu Hitler hilfreich sind oder unsere Versuche zeitgenössische politische Herausforderungen zu verstehen behindern.

Copyright © Central European History Society of the American Historical Association 2018 

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1 For comparisons between Trump and Hitler, see note 3. On Obama-Hitler comparisons, see Jamelle Bouie, “You Know Who Else Said That?,” Slate, Jan. 13, 2015. On Bush comparisons, see “Ads Compare Bush to Hitler,” The Washington Times, Jan. 5, 2004. Also see “Turkish Newspaper Depicts Merkel as Hitler,” Independent, March 17, 2017; “Is Vladimir Putin Another Hitler?,” Forbes, May 5, 2014; “The Holocaust-Denying, Vichy-Celebrating Heart of the National Front,” Chicago Tribune, April 11, 2017; “Enes Kanter Calls Turkey's Erodgan ‘Hitler of Our Century,’” Guardian, May 22, 2017; “Duterte Decries Hitler Comparison,” CNN Philippines, Oct. 1, 2016; “Hugo Chavez Compared to Hitler After Vow to Rule Until 2031,” Telegraph, June 26, 2011.

2 Academics have increasingly begun to explore the merits of historical analogies. See the papers presented at a recent conference held at the University of Pennsylvania: “Inglorious Comparisons: On the Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies” (

3 See, among many other essays, Ron Rosenbaum, “Against Normalization: The Lesson of the ‘Munich Post,’” Los Angeles Review of Books, Feb. 5, 2017; Christopher Browning, “Lessons from Hitler's Rise,” New York Review of Books, April 20, 1917; “Yale Professor: Here's Why It's Useful to Compare Trump's Actions to Hitler's,” Business Insider, April 14, 2017; Snyder, Timothy, On Tyranny (New York: Tim Duggan Books, 2017)Google Scholar; Andrew Sullivan, “America Has Never Been So Ripe for Tyranny,” New York Magazine, May 1, 2016; Nathan Stoltzfus, “Trump Versus Hitler,” Daily Beast, July 31, 2016.

4 See Shalom Auslander, “Don't Compare Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler,” Washington Post, Sept. 13, 2016; Steven Parfitt, “Giving Up on Godwin's Law,” Jacobin, Feb. 10, 2017; Sebastian Schutte, “Trump/Hitler Comparisons are Overstated,” Washington Post, Nov. 22, 2016; Jeet Heer, “Horrible Histories,” New Republic, March 19, 2017; Michael Lind, “Quit Comparing Trump to Hitler,” Politico, March 8, 2016; Shari Berman, “Donald Trump Isn't a Fascist,” Vox, Jan. 3, 2017.

5 Moshik Temkin, “Historians Should Not Be Pundits,” New York Times, June 26, 2017.

6 This article draws mostly on English-language sources from Britain, the United States, Canada, and Australia. It incorporates some German sources from the Weimar era, but not from the Nazi period, because of the regime's suppression of the free press. Scattered observations from other countries are included where possible. The primary databases are, The European Library (, and the many individual newspaper databases at the New York Public Library, such as The Times of London Digital Archive, ProQuest Historical Newspapers, and others.

7 I would like to acknowledge Colin Patrick for coining the phrase, “Who was Hitler before Hitler?,” which first appeared in 2011 in his short blog introduction to Brian Palmer, “Before Hitler, Who Was the Stand-In for Pure Evil?,” Slate, Oct. 4, 2011 (

8 This process is called “mapping.” See Holyoak, Keith J., “Analogy and Relational Reasoning,” in The Oxford Handbook of Thinking and Reasoning, ed. Holyoakand, K. J. and Morrison, R. G. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013), 246-49Google Scholar.

9 A duck's wings and a fish's fins, for example, are analogous insofar as they promote the function of locomotion. See Itkonen, Esa, Analogy as Structure and Process: Approaches in Linguistics, Cognitive Psychology, and Philosophy of Science (Philadelphia, PA: John Benjamins, 2005), 1CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

10 See Macdonald, Scot, Rolling the Iron Dice: Historical Analogies and Decisions to Use Military Force in Regional Contingencies (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000)Google Scholar (Macdonald calls this “diagnosis” on p. 10).

11 In keeping with its etymological origins in the Latin word analogia, or proportion, an analogy is often a simplified, scaled-down version of the more complex thing that it is seeking to explain—for example, Isaac Newton's likening of the universe to a machine. See Scott, A. F., Current Literary Terms: A Concise Dictionary of Their Origin and Uses (London: Macmillan, 1965), 12CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

12 Macdonald writes that we can infer that, “if two things … are similar in certain respects, then they are also similar in other respects.” The lessons can come in “micro” and “macro” forms; they can imply specific policy prescriptions or support general principles: “Master analogies” offer “a broad, general lesson.” See Macdonald, Rolling the Iron Dice, 3-10.

13 If an analogy is mentioned before a policy is devised, then it is possibly an influence. See ibid., 11-12.

14 Mayer, Arno, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies: Not Munich But Greece,” in Annales d’études internationales 1 (1970): 224-32Google Scholar; Kornprobst, Markus, “Comparing Apples and Oranges? Leading and Misleading Uses of Historical Analogies,” Millennium: Journal of International Studies 36, no. 1 (2007): 29CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Macdonald, Rolling the Iron Dice, 1.

15 Mayer, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies,” 226.

16 Bergman, Jay, “The Perils of Historical Analogy: Leon Trotsky on the French Revolution,” Journal of the History of Ideas 48, no. 1 (1987): 78-79CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

17 Kornprobst, “Comparing Apples and Oranges?,” 30.

18 Macdonald, Scot, “Hitler's Shadow: Historical Analogies and the Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait,” Diplomacy and Statecraft 13, no. 4 (2002): 44CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

19 Portes, Alejandro, “Hazards of Historical Analogy,” Social Problems 28, no. 5 (1981): 517CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

20 Mayer, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies,” 226. On the nineteenth-century observation of James Bryce that the “chief … use of history is to deliver us from plausible historical analogies,” see Müller, Jan Werner, “On ‘European Memory’: Some Conceptual and Normative Remarks,” in A European Memory? Contested Histories and Politics of Remembrance, ed. Pakier, Małgorzata and Stråth, Bo (New York: Berghahn, 2010)Google Scholar, 27.

21 Müller, Jan Werner, “On ‘European Memory,’” 27; Vaughn, Stephen, ed., The Vital Past: Writings on the Uses of History (Athens: Univesity of Georgia Press, 1985), 294Google Scholar.

22 Kent, George O., “Clio the Tyrant: Historical Analogies and the Meaning of History,” The Historian 32, no. 1 (1969): 104CrossRefGoogle Scholar. Kornprobst doubts the positivist belief that an empirical basis exists for determining the validity of an analogy. He prefers the method of “rhetorical pragmatism,” which employs “discussion and adjudication” to determine the use of analogies. See Kornprobst, “Comparing Apples and Oranges?,” 32.

23 Macdonald, Rolling the Iron Dice, 4.

24 Mayer, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies,” 225.

25 Portes, “Hazards of Historical Analogy,” 517.

26 Bergman, “The Perils of Historical Analogy,” 73.

27 Carr, E. H., What Is History? (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1962), 65Google Scholar.

28 Mayer argues that analogies are couched in different “rhetorical forms.” See Mayer, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies,” 224.

29 May, Ernest, ‘Lessons of the Past’: The Use and Misuse of History in American Foreign Policy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1975)Google Scholar; Mayer, “Uses and Abuses of Historical Analogies,” 226. See also Macdonald, “Hitler's Shadow.”

30 May, “Lessons of the Past,” xi-xii, 18.

31 See Scholdt, Günter, Autoren über Hitler: Deutschsprachige Schriftsteller 1919-1945 und ihr Bild vom ‘Führer’ (Bonn: Bouvier, 1993)Google Scholar.

32 “The Bavarian ‘Dictator,’” Observer, Sept. 23, 1923; “Want Rupprecht to Rule Bavaria,” New York Times, Dec. 14, 1922; “Handsome Adolf of Germany,” Courier and Advertiser (Dundee, Scotland), Sept. 17, 1930.

33 The same was true of the many comparisons made between Hitler and other contemporary dictators in the 1930s, such as Joseph Stalin.

34 For references to Hitler as a “house painter,” see “Hitler the Man in the German Limelight,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, Oct. 22, 1931; as a “little Austrian sign painter,” see “Munich Treason Trial,” The Times (London), Feb. 27, 1924; as an “adventurer,” see “Ludendorff Excited,” News Journal (Wilmington, DE), Dec. 1, 1925; and as a “charlatan,” see “Prisoners Released in Bavaria,” Guardian, Dec. 22, 1924.

35 “Watch Handsome Adolf,” Courier and Advertiser, Oct. 13, 1931.

36 “Amour Cost French Hitler Chance to Rule,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Dec. 2, 1931.

37 “Man on Horseback,” Decatur Herald, Oct. 18, 1930.

38 Guerard, Albert, “Boulanger and Hitler,” Books Abroad 6, no. 1 (1932): 9-11CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

39 “Was kostet eine verpasste Gelegenheit?,” Hamburger Anzeiger, Oct. 5, 1932. Even when Hitler accepted the chancellorship, The Boston Globe predicted that he, like Boulanger, would “fade into a comic opera figure.” See Henry W. Harris, “New German Chancellor ‘Man of Wind,’ May Stir Hurriane,” Boston Globe, Jan. 31, 1933.

40 Shirer, William, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1960), 141Google Scholar.

41 Sand,” Press and Sun Bulletin (Binghamton, NY), Sept. 30, 1930Google Scholar.

42 “Germany Can Care for Him,” Reno Gazette-Journal, Sept. 26, 1930. Hitler was only forty-one at the time. See also John O'Ren, “Down the Spillway,” Baltimore Sun, July 28, 1932.

43 “Hitler, the German Fascist,” Detroit Free Press, Oct. 15, 1930.

44 Scholdt adds that leftist critics underestimated the threat posed by Hitler because they had a hard time imagining Weimar becoming worse than it already was. See Scholdt, Autoren über Hitler, 485-87.

45 Ibid., 495.


46 “Topics of the Times,” New York Times, March 2, 1933.

47 London Gossip,” The Age (Melbourne, Australia), Dec. 30, 1933Google Scholar; Scholdt, Autoren über Hitler, 432.

48 Whither Germany?,” The Advertiser (Adelaide, Australia), March 2, 1933Google Scholar.

49 “Hitler Second Mussolini,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Feb. 12, 1933.

50 “German Turmoil,” The Middletown Times (NY), March 29, 1933. Another paper declared that, “with a majority in the Reichstag, [Hitler] might find it more expedient to bring about his revolution gradually, on the model of Napoleon III, who was President before he became Emperor.” See “The German Contest,” St. Cloud Times (MN), March 3, 1933.

51 “Napoleon III and Hitler,” Baltimore Sun, Nov. 19, 1933. A few weeks later, the Detroit Free Press wrote, “It may be prudent for Hitler to remember that Napoleon III used to have successful plebiscites, too.” See “Hash,” Detroit Free Press, Nov. 26, 1933. See also Scholdt, Autoren über Hitler, 440; Lucien Bourgeois in Petit Parisien, cited in “Hitler to Create a New Germany,” Nottingham Evening Post, Nov. 13, 1933.

52 “Nazi Propaganda,” Daily Mail (Hull, UK), July 28, 1932; “Hitler as a Cromwell,” Observer, Sept. 10, 1933; “Hitler's Magnetic Spell,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, Jan. 18, 1934.

53 “Hitler Seeks Jobs for All Germans,” New York Times, July 10, 1933.

54 “Hitler and Cromwell,” Green Bay Press Gazette (WI), July 14, 1933; “Topics of the Times,” New York Times, July 11, 1933. For a similar point in the British press, see “Germany's Election Eve Decree,” Western Daily Press and Bristol Mirror, July 30, 1932.

55 “Gesture Against German Republic,” Philadelphia Inquirer, Feb. 19, 1933. For the claim that Hitler did the same thing as Cromwell had when he sent “troops under Colonel Pride to arrest” certain “recalcitrant members” from the House of Commons, see “Pride's Purge—Hitler Version,” Philadelphia Inquirer, May 17, 1933.

56 The Mayor Condemns Dictators,” The Citizen (Gloucester, UK), Sept. 23, 1933Google Scholar. Other observers referred to a “Pride's Purge of brains,” an allusion to the dismissal of other “experts of learning and practice.” See “Fanaticism and Infatuation,” Observer, May 7, 1933.

57 “Violence Has Shot Its Bolt,” Burlington Free Press (VT), July 31, 1934.

58 For another reference to Richard III, see “‘Purge’ Destroyed Nazi Socialism,” Philadelphia Inquirer, July 15, 1934.

59 “Murder—Made in Germany,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 7, 1934; “British Press Opinion,” The Age (Sydney, Australia), July 16, 1934. Ousted former Nazi Otto Strasser published a book at the time titled Die Deutsche Bartholmäusnacht (Zurich: Reso-Verlag, 1935)Google Scholar, which compared the SA purge to the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre.

60 “Hitler, in Robespierre Role, Has Begun Killing and Germans are Asking Where It Is Going to Stop,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, July 2, 1934. The Minneapolis Star found a parallel in the drama of personal betrayal, noting that, just as Hitler had killed his best friend, Ernst Röhm, so had Robespierre sent “to the guillotine his lifelong friend and schoolfellow Camille Desmoulins.” See Edwin C. Hill, “Hitler's Career Similar to That of Robespierre,” Minneapolis Star, July 12, 1934.

61 “‘Handing Hitler His Hat,’” Boston Globe, July 8, 1934.

62 Edwin C. Hill, “Hitler's Career Similar to That of Robespierre,” Minneapolis Star, July 12, 1934.

63 “Mass Phase Ended in Nazi Revolution,” New York Times, July 15, 1934. This echoed Otto Strasser's belief that “the Hitler system represented the Gironde epoch of the German Revolution.” See Strasser, Deutsche Bartholmäusnacht, 227; Bergman, “The Perils of Historical Analogy,” 94.

64 “‘Handing Hitler His Hat,’” Boston Globe, July 8, 1934. Another paper observed that “Robespierre met the fate he dealt out to his enemies”; see “Hitler, in Robespierre Role,” St. Louis Dispatch, July 2, 1934.

65 Heads Will Roll,” Statesman Journal (Salem, OR), July 3, 1934Google Scholar.

66 J. L. Garvin, “Hitler's Red Hand,” Observer, July 8, 1934; “If Hitler Looks Back,” Mason City Globe Gazette (IA), July 17, 1934. Another article predicted that there might be someone “waiting in the wings”—perhaps a Napoleon or a “Red revolution.” See “Hitler and Robespierre,” Baltimore Sun, July 4, 1934.

67 “Main Threat to Hitler Rule Found Within the Nazi Ranks,” New York Times, Oct., 28, 1934.

68 References to Caesar appeared in “Germany's ‘Leader’ Stands Doubtfully at Europe's Crossroads,” Washington Post, Aug. 5, 1934; “Hitler Running Germany Without a Brake,” Boston Globe, Aug. 5, 1934.

69 “Germans Are Now Ruled by Reichsfuehrerschaft,” New York Times, Aug. 5, 1934. Napoleon's first plebiscite took place following his coup in December 1851; the second occurred in November 1852, when he persuaded the French Senate to appoint him emperor.

70 “As an Emperor Dreams,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, Aug. 5, 1934. The Observer agreed, noting that Hitler, as “an imitator of Napoleon III, … has no wish to copy his downfall”; see “Today's German Plebiscite,” Observer, Aug. 19, 1934. Others predicted that Hitler, like Napoleon, would evolve in a conservative direction, restore the monarchy, and become “king” of Germany. See “Will Hitler Become King?,” Chicago Tribune, Aug. 4, 1934; “Many in France See Monarchy,” New York Times, Aug. 20, 1934.

71 “Germany Faces Either War or Bolshevism,” Los Angeles Times, July 15, 1934.

72 As he put it, ““Henry VIII said practically the same thing.” See “Hitler Control of Religion,” Asbury Park Press (NJ), Aug. 5, 1933.

73 “Hitler, Catholics, and Jews,” Southern Cross (Adelaide, Australia), Sept. 7, 1934. One year later, according to the Salt Lake Tribune, the “suspicion has developed … that the regime may … repeat the exploit of King Henry VIII of England and bring both Protestants and Catholics into one national church.” See “Hitler Still Holds Adoration,” Salt Lake Tribune, Sept. 1, 1935. The New York Times added that, “since the time of Henry VIII no prince or dictator has enjoyed such boundless authority over a Protestant religious organization.” See “Reich Clergy Face Supremacy Issue,” New York Times, Oct. 13, 1935.

74 “More English Saints?,” Nottingham Evening Post, Jan. 29, 1935. That same year, Hitler's use of the guillotine to execute several female spies prompted comparisons to Henry VIII, who was known for dispatching his wives via decapitation. See “Beheading Women,” Greenville News (SC) Feb. 21, 1935. See also “A Medieval Mind,” Daily Capital Journal (OR), Feb. 28, 1935; “Hitler and the Catholics,” Sydney Morning Herald, Jan. 2, 1939.

75 Zunk, Wolf, “Prophete Rechts—Prophete Links,” Volkszeitung (Berlin), April 7, 1926Google Scholar.

76 Scholdt, Autoren über Hitler, 448-49. Haushofer was the son of the famous geographer, Karl Haushofer, who indirectly shaped Hitler's views on foreign policy through his influence on Rudolf Hess, who had studied with Haushofer at the University of Munich.

77 Ibid., 444-49. See also Laubach, Ernst, “Das Täuferreich zu Münster in seiner Wirkung auf die Nachwelt,” Westfälische Zeitschrift 141 (1991): 144-45Google Scholar. Reck died in Dachau in 1945.


78 Hitler Compared to Julius Caesar,” Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY), Nov. 28, 1934Google Scholar.

79 “Whither Germany?,” Observer, May 7, 1933. According to another paper, Hitler now had “unprecedented Powers” unlike anything “enjoyed by a Hohenzollern ruler.” See “Hitler's Unprecedented Powers,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, March 23, 1933.

80 “The Ways of Reaction,” Chicago Tribune, May 16, 1933; “Burning Books,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, May 10, 1933.

81 “Banned Books,” Saturday Review, May 11, 1935. See also “The Book Censors,” Sun (Sydney, Australia), April 27, 1933. According to an American paper, “there is a good deal of Savonarola about Hitler,” who “considers himself to be [on] a great mission.” See Harry Carr, “The Lancer,” Los Angeles Times, Dec. 5, 1933. See also “Hitler Favors Feudal System,” Los Angeles Times, Dec. 3, 1933.

82 Walter Lippman compared the bonfires to the “darkest days of the French Revolution, to Robespierre, … who set out to ‘awaken’ France with a new state religion, under which it was said that ‘all were atheists who did not think like Robespierre.’” See Walter Lippman, “The Burning of the Books,” Los Angeles Times, May 12, 1933.

83 Malcolm W. Bingay, “The Book Burner,” Detroit Free Press, May 12, 1933.

84 “The Ways of Reaction,” Chicago Tribune, May 16, 1933.

85 Goldstein, Fanny, “Auto-da-fé for the Jew and His Book,” Boston Globe, May 13, 1933Google Scholar.

86 According to a paper in Hawaii, Hitler had “started a sort of medieval crusade of Jewish persecution which is hardly worthy of a great enlightened people.” See “Germany Taken to Task for Persecution of Jewish People,” Honolulu Advertiser (HI), Aug. 8, 1933.

87 “No Alternative for the German Jews,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, April 28, 1933. Later that same year, the paper observed that, “for the Jews, 1933 is the saddest year since 1492, when the entire Jewish population of Spain was expelled from that country. In tragic comparison, the German pogrom of Hitler in 1933 is probably of greater magnitude.” See “1933—An Eventful Year in History,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, Dec. 29, 1933.

88 Goldstein, Fanny, “Auto-da-fé for the Jew and His Book,” Boston Globe, May 13, 1933Google Scholar.

89 See Yerhushalmi, Yosef Hayim, Zakhor: Jewish History and Jewish Memory (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1982), 36Google Scholar.

90 “Hitler Policies Scored by Rabbis,” New York Times, April 12, 1933; “Hitler Defies the Civilized World,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, March 31, 1933.

91 “Three Thousand Years After Pharaoh,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, April 7, 1933. Another paper opined that “Hitler might do well to investigate the case history of … Pharaoh.” See Your Column,” Sentinel (Chicago, IL), Aug. 10, 1933Google Scholar.

92 See also “Jews Celebrate Purim By Holding Special Services,’ Reading Times (UK), March 13, 1933.

93 “Random Thoughts,” B'nai B'rith Messenger, May 5, 1933; “Correspondence,” Sentinel, April 11, 1933; “Hitler Denounced in Purim Sermons,” New York Times, March 13, 1933. One year later, the Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle marked the holiday of Purim by noting that it “gives us hope that the Jewish people of Germany … will be saved” by the actions of a “another ‘Queen Esther’ who will expose the evil of race hatred … and condemn the modern Hitlers to the ash heap of history.” See “Purim,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, Feb. 23, 1934.

94 “Das ewige Purim,” Gemeindeblatt der israelitische Gemeinde Frankfurts, March, 1933 ( In 1935, Aufbau opined that “today there is once again a Haman who reminds us that we are Jews.” See “Zur Feier am Heinedenkmal,” Aufbau, Feb. 1, 1935. According to The Sentinel, Nazi newspapers cited Jewish analogies between Haman and Hitler as evidence that Jews were “planning to murder Hitler in the same way.” See “Two Jews Brutally Murdered in German Provinces,” Sentinel, April 21, 1933.

95 “Exhorts World to Fight Hitler,” Asbury Park Press (NJ), Dec. 1, 1933.

96 “A Jew to Hitler,” Sentinel, June 1, 1933.

97 “Jews Sacrificing All for Faith,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, Dec. 10, 1935.

98 “Credit Jews' Five Million Ethiop Offer,” Afro-American, Jan. 11, 1936. See also Rosenberg, Jonathan, How Far the Promised Land: World Affairs and the American Civil Rights Movement from the First World War to Vietnam (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2005), 101-30Google Scholar.

99 It added: “Twentieth century dictators and the Herods of Moses' time are one and the same.” See “What of Hitler?,” Evening Independent, March 22, 1933.

100 “Hitler Ham Actor Father Gillis Says,” New York Times, April 9, 1934.

101 “Digest of Public Opinion: The Nazi Pogrom,” Contemporary Jewish Record, Jan. 1, 1939; “American Press Comment on Nazi Riots,” New York Times, Nov. 12, 1938.

102 “Pogrom Marks the Nazi Crisis,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, Nov. 18, 1938.

103 “Organized Intolerance,” Inquirer (KY), November 16, 1938.

104 See the front-page article in Medford Mail Tribune (OR), Nov. 21, 1938.

105 “Herod, Hitler, Hoover,” Eau Claire Leader (WI), Dec. 29, 1938.

106 “Dictators Told to Study History Lesson,” Des Moines Register, Dec. 25, 1938.

107 “Let the Chips Fall Where They May,” Daily Times News (Burlington, NC), Dec. 30, 1938. A reverend in Utah remarked, “The days of Herod are gone but the struggle endures,” because “forces mass against … Christ” and pursue the “slaughter of children.” See “Forces Massed Against Christ, Like Herod, Will Be Overcome,” Ogden Standard, Dec. 25, 1938. In Australia, a minister performed the role of Herod in a Nativity play dressed as Hitler. See “Herod, Hitler, Hoover,” Eau Claire Leader, Dec. 29, 1938.

108 The Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle declared that the pogrom was also “an assault upon Civilization itself, an assault upon Christianity, … upon law and morality.” See “Pogrom Marks the Nazi Crisis,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, Nov. 18, 1938.

109 “Back to Demosthenes,” New York Times, Oct. 23, 1938; “Dear Ginger,” Harrisburg Sunday Courier (PA), May 15, 1938; “From Lone Eagle to Lone Peacock?,” Pittsburgh Press (PA), June 3, 1940.

110 “Hitler of Macedon,” Amarillo Daily News (TX), May 2, 1941.

111 “The Warnings of Demosthenes,” Courier Journal (Louisville, KY), Sept. 6, 1941; “Great Speech,” The Greenwood Commonwealth (MS), July 6, 1941.

112 “Hitler Termed ‘Throwback’ to Ancient Philip of Macedon,” Baltimore Sun, July 26, 1942.

113 Gilbert Love, “Conquest—A Losing Game,” Pittsburgh Press, May 27, 1940.

114 “Blum Sees Italy Drive on French Colonies,” Los Angeles Times, March 20, 1939.

115 “Nazi Coup Raises Problem That Finally Got Napoleon,” Abilene Reporter News (TX), March 28, 1939.

116 “Too Good to Be True,” Eau Claire Leader, Oct. 4, 1939.

117 “The Eastern Fringe,” Winnipeg Tribune, June 28, 1940; Lochner, Louis, “Hitler's Holy Roman Empire,” Times (Shreveport, LA), May 26, 1940Google Scholar.

118 “The Dry Napoleon,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, March 17, 1939. See also “Hitler's Bloodless Conquests,” Advocate (Australia), March 17, 1939.

119 Lindley, Ernest, “Is History Repeating Itself?,” Des Moines Register, Aug. 31, 1939Google Scholar.

120 “It Has All Happened Before,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, June 24, 1940. See also “When Britain Faced Worse Ordeal,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, Oct. 18, 1940.

121 “Reflexions by Reflex,” Essex News (UK), July 13, 1940. Will Durant claimed that Hitler was like Napoleon because his military build-up had compelled him to develop a war economy that produced “no wealth [but] merely the necessity for more war.” And, he added, just as Napoleon's endless invasions had led to his defeat, so, too, would Hitler's: it was “inevitable that their careers should be linked tightly … to hastily dug graves.” See “Is Hitler Similar to Napoleon?,” Star Tribune (MN), May 27, 1940. See also “Two Dictators,” Albany Advertiser (Albany, Australia), Sept. 30, 1940.

122 “Germans Mass Ships: Churchill,” Oakland Tribune (CA), Sept. 11, 1940.

123 Hitler Aping Napoleon,” Courier and Advertiser (Dundee, Scotland), July 23, 1940Google Scholar.

124 Ulam, Adam, Stalin: The Man and His Era (Boston: Viking, 1973), 556Google Scholar.

125 In the early nineteenth century, the German nationalist Ernst Moritz Arndt described Napoleon as “the devil incarnate.” See Würffel, Stefan Bodo, “Reichs-Traum und Reichs-Trauma: Danielmotive in deutscher Sicht,” in Europa, Tausendjähriges Reich und Neue Welt: Zwei Jahrtausende Geschichte und Utopie in der Rezeption des Danielbuches, ed. Delgado, Mariano, Koch, Klaus, and Marsch, Edgar (Stuttgart: Kohlhammer, 2003), 416Google Scholar.

126 “Bismarck or Napoleon?” Chicago Tribune, June 4, 1940.

127 “In Britain To-Day,” Times, Oct. 15, 1941.

128 “Thompson Can't Share Hoover Belief of Quick Allied Victory,” Atlanta Constitution, Sept. 20, 1941.

129 “Hitler, the Squalid Caucus Boss and Butcher,” Derby Evening Telegraph (UK), Sept. 28, 1944.

130 “Wellington to Eisenhower,” St. Louis Star and Times, May 7, 1943.

131 Curt Riess, The Nazis Go Underground (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1944), 188.

132 Attila's “depredations” were attributed to the “barbarity of the times” in which they had transpired. See “Gov. Lehman Opens New York Drive for German Jews,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, June 23, 1933.

133 According to Guedalla, “the true analogy … we are facing” is with “Attila, Tamerlane, Genghis Khan.” See Philip Guedalla, “If Napoleon Couldn't, Can Hitler?,” New York Times, Feb. 2, 1941.

134 “Today and Yesterday,” Asheville Citizen Times (NC), Sept. 3, 1939; “Among the Leaders,” Detroit Free Press, Sept. 5, 1939; “Genghis Khan, Attila Ride Again, Periling U. S., View in Washington,” Indianapolis Star, Dec. 15, 1940.

135 “How Long, O Lord Before U. S. Awakes!,” Ottawa Journal, Sept. 20, 1940.

136 “Lindbergh Warns U. S. to Keep Out of War Lest Democracy Be Lost at Home,” Philadelphia Inquirer, Sept. 16, 1939.

137 Letter-to-the-editor by Lowell Cox, in “Forum,” Palladium-Item (Richmond, IN), Oct. 5, 1939.

138 “Nazi Fury in Poland,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Jan. 30, 1940.

139 “Barbarian Invasions Then and Now,” The Lincoln Star (NE), May 20, 1941. In 1942, a report on Nazi crimes in Poland, The Black Book of Poland, chronicled “the most appalling attempt to obliterate a nation since the days of Genghis Khan,” and pointed out that Nazi atrocities were carried out “with a systematic sadism previously unknown in modern times.” Cited in Motherwell, Hiram, “The Nazis in Poland,” The Nation, Oct. 31, 1942Google Scholar. See Polish Ministry of Information, The Black Book of Poland (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1942)Google Scholar.

140 “They are Huns!,” Philadelphia Inquirer, Aug. 31, 1943. In 1942, a letter-to-the-editor at the Fresno Bee rejected the comparison of Hitler to Napoleon, claiming that he resembled instead “Genseric, the Vandal,” for his Teutonic tribe “destroyed for the love of destroying.” See “Hitler is Likened to Vandals, not Napoleon,” Fresno Bee (CA), March 6, 1942. Hitler was described elsewhere as “Genseric's modern counterpart.” See “A Predecessor for Hitler,” Manchester Guardian, Nov. 29, 1940. Other observers tried the opposite approach, i.e., diminishing Hitler's status relative to earlier warlords, in order to boost Allied morale. In 1943, The Los Angeles Times claimed that Hitler was a “dwarf” trying “to follow in the footsteps of a giant,” Genghis Khan, “who ruled the world from the saddle.” See “Hitler Trying to Emulate Great Mongol, Genghis Khan,” Los Angeles Times, June 20, 1943.

141 “We Stand at Armageddon and We Battle for the Lord,” Detroit Free Press, June 7, 1944.

142 “Mongols and Nazis,” Corsicana Semi-Weekly Light (TX), Oct. 6, 1942.

143 “Military Historian Finds Hitler Parallels Hannibal,” Amarillo Daily News, April 17, 1943.

144 “Pages of History Doom Hitler,” Des Moines Register, Sept. 30, 1941.

145 “Victor Burr,” Wilkes-Barre Times Leader (PA), Nov. 6, 1942.

146 Gloucestershire Echo, Nov. 1, 1939. See also 200 Hear Dr. Plummer at Adult Rally,” News-Chronicle (Shippensburg, PA), Sept. 24, 1940Google Scholar.

147 “Migrant Peoples,” Times (London), Nov. 7, 1939; “The Values of the Bible,” Indianapolis Star, Feb. 14, 1942. Similar comments appeared in the years 1942-1943 and culminated with US Vice President Henry Wallace's observation in 1944 that “Hitler surpassed Nebuchadnezzar in barbarity.” See “Mr. Wallace Praises Mr. Weizman,” Palestine Post, March 14, 1944.

148 This was already apparent in November 1939, when the British press declared that “even the 15th century tortures of the Inquisition under Torquemada never approached the satanic sadism of Germany's concentration camps.” See “A Letter from London,” Devon and Exeter Gazette (UK), Nov. 10, 1939. More broadly, see Lipstadt, Deborah, Beyond Belief: The American Press and the Coming of the Holocaust, 1933-1945 (New York: Touchstone, 1993)Google Scholar.

149 “Germany's New Order in Europe is Pictured in Horrible Detail,” Neosho Daily News (MO), June 1, 1942. The Los Angeles Times agreed, noting that “the records of history can be searched in vain for any parallel to this Nazi savagery.” See “Plight of the Jews Under Hitler Truly Terrible,” Los Angeles Times, Dec. 3, 1942.

150 Extermination of Polish Jews,” Morning Bulletin (Rockingham, Australia), Dec. 7, 1942Google Scholar.

151 Cohen, Israel, “The Doom of European Jewry,” Contemporary Review 162 (1943): 80Google Scholar.

152 “Hitler's Barbarism,” Hebrew Standard of Australasia (Sydney), April 6, 1944.

153 Harold Denny, “‘The World Must Never Forget,’” New York Times, May 6, 1945.

154 Nazi Women Took Part in Camp Cruelty,” Times (Shreveport, LA), April 26, 1945Google Scholar; “Hitler's End,” Gloucestershire Echo, May 2, 1945. For this reason, “Nero was not the object of so wide a detestation” as Hitler. See “Hitler's Acts Spread Bloodshed,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, May 2, 1945.

155 “All Jews Hounded Under Hitler Rule,” New York Times, May 2, 1945.

156 “Blood of the Dragon,” Fort Myers News-Press (FL), March 23, 1945; “‘Twilight of the Gods,’” Wilkes-Barre Times Leader (PA), April 25, 1945.

157 “‘Twilight of the Gods' Has Passed and It Is Night,” Arizona Republic, April 29, 1945.

158 William Shirer, “Hitler May Solve Allies' Problem by Dragging Germany Down to Destruction,” Boston Globe, Feb. 4, 1945.

159 “Toward the End, a Pipsqueak,” Philadelphia Inquirer, Feb. 26, 1945. The Chicago Tribune added this: “The man who thought himself Siegfried can look in the mirror. The man he will see there is Wotan.” See “Front Views and Profiles,” Chicago Tribune, April 28, 1945. According to another paper, “The shades of … Wotan are descending over Berlin,” and Hitler‘s “oft repeated utterance that Germany either would win or disappear as a nation appears no longer … the mere wagging of a psychopath's tongue.” See “Capitol Comment,” Journal News (White Plains, NY), Feb. 24, 1945. Some objected to Wagnerian comparisons, arguing that Wagner “never could have endured … Nazi Germany.” See Not Wagnerian,” Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY), March 18, 1945Google Scholar.

160 See the article in Corvallis Gazette (OR), Sept. 21, 1939.

161 Burr, Victor, “Mussolini and Hitler Tried to Soar Too High and Fell,” Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, Feb. 13, 1945Google Scholar. See also the comparison of Hitler to Icarus in Morgenthau, Hans, “The Evil of Politics and the Ethics of Evil,” Ethics 56, no. 1 (1945): 13CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

162 See the article in Circleville Herald (OH), Dec. 29, 1943.

163 Scattered references to this effect appeared at the beginning of the Third Reich. In 1933, for example, Reverend J. W. Ham delivered a sermon on “Hitler and Satan” that insisted that “Satan plays his trump card when he urges a soul to delay the matter of his soul's salvation.” See “Plans Maturing for Final Program of Ham Meetings,” Daily Times News (Burlington, NC), Oct. 13, 1933. In 1940, the Times of London declared that Hitler “bears a strange resemblance to … Lucifer.” See “Hitler and Lucifer,” Times, July 24, 1940.

164 “Christmas and War,” Brookeville Democrat (IN), Dec. 25, 1941.

165 “Satan Reproves Sin,” Argus (Melbourne, Australia), June 28, 1941. In 1943, the Australian press called Hitler “another Lucifer … who has brought upon the world a torrent of evil.” See “The Gethsemane of Easter,” Lithgow Mercury (Australia), April 21, 1943. That same year, Jewish observers provided their own interpretation on this perspective, with one historian calling Hitler the “anti-Christ,” who was using antisemitism to undermine the “authority of the entire Christian Church.” See Jacob Rader Marcus, “Hitler Is Imposter–Christ, Harvard Students Hear,” Cincinnati Enquirer, July 31, 1941.

166 For a reference to Hitler's “political Satanism,” see Hook, Stanley, “Hitlerism: A Non-Metaphysical View,” Contemporary Jewish Record 7, no. 2 (1944): 153Google Scholar.

167 “Vilest Killer of History is Dead,” Binghamton Press (NY), May 2, 1945.

168 “Hitler Anti-Christ,” Lincoln Star (NE), April 27, 1945. According to another paper, “Hitler is one of the most evil of the ‘world’ conquerors of all time … and as such is antichrist.” See “Hitler's Antichrist Teachings May Plague World for While,” Alexandria Daily Town Talk (LA), Jan. 23, 1945.

169 “House of Commons,” Times, Nov. 29, 1939.

170 In the process, Thompson argued, Hitler “will succeed in serving some good,” for, with his “persecution of both Christians and Jews,” he has “revitalized the religious instinct … and challenged all faiths to prove whether they … have any function in a world of pure force.” See Dorothy Thompson, “Hitler's Evil Is Likened to Working of Mephisto But Lacking Technique,” Cincinnati Enquirer, Oct. 11, 1943.

171 Dudley, Uncle, “Evil Strips Down,” Boston Globe, April 29, 1945Google Scholar.

172 “Adolf Hitler,” Times, May 2, 1945.

173 Hitler, the Fiend,” News Chronicle (Shippensburg, PA), May 4, 1945Google Scholar; “Hitler's Evil Career,” Argus Leader, May 2, 1945; “Kill Nazism Next!,” Altoona Tribune, May 3, 1945.

174 “The Reported Death of One of the World's Greatest Monsters,” Berkshire Eagle (MA), May 2, 1945.

175 “Worse Barbarism in Our Time,” Des Moines Register, Oct. 29, 1944.

176 “Grass Root Reveries,” Indian Journal (OK), May 10, 1945.

177 “Near Capture of Kaiser: Told by American 21 Years Later,” The Amarillo Daily News, May 3, 1940; “Money Well Spent,” Tallahassee Democrat, Oct. 4, 1939. See also the claim that “the wanton destructiveness of the Kaiser's troops is as nothing compared to the activities of Hitler's retreating armies” in Russia, in “Nover's Notations,” The Anniston Star (AL), Sept. 28, 1943.

178 “The Most Critical Fourth of July,” The Asbury Park Press (NJ), July 3, 1942.

179 In 1940, a British reverend declared that commemorating Fawke's deeds on November 5 would, in the future, yield “to the burning in effigy of a far bigger villain than Guy, who by comparison, is a saint to the blood-stained murderer, Hitler, whose name will [go] down in infamy and execration.” See “Give Guy Fawkes a Rest,” Bath Weekly Chronicle and Herald, Nov. 9, 1940. In 1936, Scottish children stopped dressing up as Guy Fawkes for the annual holiday celebration and instead began wearing costumes alluding to “the living model,” Adolf Hitler. See “New Guys for November 5,” The Evening Telegraph and Post (Dundee, Scotland), Oct. 27, 1936.

180 “An Apology to Lucifer,” Morning Herald (Hagerstown, MD), April 28, 1945. Hitler was also called an “emissary of Satan,” who had “presumably perished amid the ruin … of Berlin.” See “Half-Way House to Peace,” Times, May 16, 1945.

181 H. L. Phillips, “The Once Over,” Evening News (PA), May 8, 1945.

182; The phrase became a synonym for doing something bad or good excessively. See, for instance, how the organizer of a “magnificent” dinner party was praised as having “out-heroded Herod,” in an issue of London Observer on Jan. 11, 1829.

183 “Cornwall and a ‘Holy War,’” Cornishman (Penzance, UK), Dec. 21, 1933. On December 19, 1941, an American preacher said that Hitler was “the one figure … who has “out-Heroded Herod.” See “‘Discord in Christmas,’” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Dec. 19, 1941.

184 “Commons' Solemn Act of Protest,” Nottingham Evening Post, Dec. 17, 1942.

185 “Slope … Spades,” Palestine Post, Sept. 13, 1934; A German Collapse,” Contemporary Review 161 (1942): 369Google Scholar.

186 On Pharoah and Hannibal, see Milton Brown, “Checking on the Exodus,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, April 19, 1940; “Methodist,” Palm Beach Post, March 11, 1939. On Haman, see “Jews Here to Recall Ancient ‘Hitler's Doom,’” Los Angeles Times, March 17, 1943; Jews Celebrate Extermination of Ancient ‘Hitler,’Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY), March 4, 1942Google Scholar; “Purim,” Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, Feb. 23, 1934.

187 Medieval examples include Alfons Goldschmidt, Whither Israel? (New York, 1934), 15. A 1940 essay about Pius XII trying to contend with Hitler includes an analogy to the investiture conflict of the late eleventh century: Henry IV is compared to an “ancient Hitler” for driving Pope Gregory VII from Rome (after he had paid penance to the pope at Canossa) and setting up an “anti-Pope,” Clement III, in 1084. See “Vatican Facing Grave Problems,” Minneapolis Star, Aug. 4, 1940.

188 The Berkeley reference is found in the article, “Gutenberg's Type,” Tipton Daily Tribune (IN), April 13, 1940. On Napoleon and Ivan the Terrible, see “Pettengill,” Santa Ana Register (CA), June 25, 1940; “The Two Terribles,” Daily Notes (Canonsburg, PA), April 30, 1943. On Japanese and Chinese precedents, see “16th Century Jap Hitler,” Cullman Democrat (AL), Feb. 19, 1942; “West Never to Conquer East Again, Rotary Speaker Avers,” Abilene Reporter News (TX), Feb. 15, 1944. Other claims were made about other features of the Nazi regime, e.g., the “Gestapo system” of Cardinal Richelieu, the “Concentration camps of Babylon,” the Red Sea engulfing Pharaoh's “Nazi chariots.” See “Hitler is Only an Imitator,” Aberdeen Press and Journal, April 11, 1940; “Migrant Peoples,” The Times (London), Nov. 7, 1939; Weisfeld, Rabbi Israel, “Passover—Its Modern Significance,” Sentinel (Chicago), April 14, 1939Google Scholar.

189 Golding, Louis, Hitler Through the Ages (London: Sovereign Books, 1939)Google Scholar.

190 Ibid., 35-36. According to another passage, Titus and Caligula were both “Hitlers.” See ibid., 32.


191 Ibid., 48. Torquemada's Inquisition and racial discrimination were compared to “Julius Streicher and Der Stürmer.” There were also “lesser Hitlers” in Russia, such as the Tsarist adviser, Vyacheslav von Plehve, and the White Russian commander, Anton Deniken. See ibid., 114, 156.


192 Ibid., 170, 90. These “lesser Hitlers in Germany … were the forerunners of the man who was to become Lord and Master of them all.” See ibid., 174.


193 Ibid., preface (no pagination).


194 Farau, Alfred, “Rede am Tage von Hitlers Tod,” Aufbau, May 11, 1945Google Scholar; “Other Hitlers May Harass the World,” Argus Leader (SD), April 24, 1945; “Good Life or Good Living?” Western Gazette (Yeovil, England), May 4, 1945; “What's the Answer?,” Indianapolis Star, May 15, 1945; “Hitler's End,” Gloucestershire Echo (UK), May 2, 1945.

195 “Hitler Brings Business Life into Nazi Fold,” Minneapolis Star, April 7, 1933; “The Lily or the Sword?,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, April 16, 1933; “Storm Troopers Take Charge of German Unions,” Freeport Journal-Standard (IL), May 2, 1933; “Austria, Danger Center,” Oakland Tribune, Aug. 29, 1933.

196 “Silver Shirter Airs Plan to Hitlerize U. S.,” Salt Lake Tribune, Feb. 9, 1940. Along similar lines, Senator Huey Long was seen as someone who could “Hitlerize America.” See “Can Huey Hitlerize America?,” Des Moines Register, Feb. 2, 1935.

197 “No Licensing,” Jefferson City Post-Tribune (MO), Oct. 10, 1933; “Frank Warns of Political Despotism,” Albuquerque Journal, Jan. 30, 1938.

198 “Must We Hitlerize to Fight Hitlerism?,” Postville Herald (IA), Oct. 2, 1940. In September, a Wisconsin Republican politician, Glenn Frank, said, “I don't want to see us Hitlerize our democracy … in defend[ing] against Hitlerism.” See “Accuses New Deal of ‘Scare Stories,’” Stevens Point Daily Journal (WI), Sept. 3, 1940.

199 “If We Copy Hitler!,” Des Moines Register, May 25, 1941.

200 “FDR Dictator Bill Assailed as Betrayal of U. S.,” Chicago Tribune, Feb. 10, 1941.

201 “U. S. System Surpasses All Others in War Task,” Philadelphia Inquirer, May 29, 1942.

202 “Aid Bill Would Mean War Power Delegation,” Pittsburgh Press, Jan. 22, 1941.

203 “Something About Sport Booing,” The Ironwood Times (MI), April 2, 1941.

204 “German Prisoners Want to Work,” Morning Herald (Hagerstown, MD), Aug. 14, 1944; “Frank, Powerful Film is ‘Hitler's Children,’” Lansing State Journal (MI), Feb. 21, 1943.

205 Luginbill, Bob, “Variations on a German Theme,” American Speech 15, no. 4 (1940): 445-46CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

206 Bauer, Laurie, English Word-Formation (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983), 226-28CrossRefGoogle Scholar. Conversion is sometimes called “verbification.” Well-known examples include “gerrymandering” (after the eighteenth-century Massachusetts governor, Elbridge Gerry) and “bowdlerizing” (from the nineteenth-century editor of Shakespeare's works, Thomas Bowdler).

207 Berger, James, After the End: Representations of Post-Apocalypse (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1999), 60-61Google Scholar.

208 Rosenfeld, Gavriel, Hi Hitler! How the Nazi Past is Being Normalized in Contemporary Culture (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2105), 336-37Google Scholar.

209 Malcolm Harris, “It Really Can Happen Here,” Salon, Sept. 29, 2015.

210 Matthew Rosza, “America Has Had a Tyrant Like Trump Before,” Salon, July 4, 2016; Jay Kiedrowski, “Trump: A Throwback to the Know-Nothing Party of the 1850s,” Minnpost, Sept. 9, 2016; Chris Lehmann, “Donald Trump and the Long Tradition of American Populism,” Newsweek, Aug. 22, 2015; Greg Bailey, “The Troubling Donald Trump-Huey Long Connection,” History News Network, Oct. 9, 2016; Jelani Cobb, “The Model for Donald Trump's Media Relations is Joseph McCarthy,” New Yorker, Sept. 22, 2016; Lawrence Leamer, “Donald Trump is George Wallace's Cynical Heir,” Daily Beast, June 12, 2016; Brian Rosenwald, “Donald Trump Isn't Ronald Reagan, He's Barry Goldwater,” Daily Beast, July 5, 2016; Tim Alberta, “‘The Ideas Made It, But I Didn't,’” Politico, May/June, 2017. Other commentators have looked beyond American history, comparing Trump with ancient Roman tyrants like Caligula, early modern kings like Henry VIII, and Latin American dictators like Juan Peron. See, e.g., Jill Frank, “How Oligarchy Breeds Tyranny,”, March 7, 2017; Emile Simpson, “Ego-Maniac Revolutions Don't Last,” Foreign Policy (March 1, 2017) (; Frederico Finchelstein and Pablo Piccato, “Trump's Macho Populism,” Open Democracy, Oct. 3, 2016.

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