The first time I heard of this man from bygone era, it was not a complete shock. From literature abound, and the news of endless violence, cruelties, and genocides, from earliest recorded time to our modern days, it has been evident for the very nature of human frailties that propels one human being against another, defiling others' the very existence and in doing so bringing bigger calamities, one after another.
In her seminal book The Clash Within, the respected author Martha C. Nussbaum touched this aspect of humanity's struggle so eloquently:
"The real struggle that democracy must wage is a struggle within the individual self, between the urge to dominate and defile the other and a willingness to live respectfully on terms of compassion and equality."The Notorious angel of death Dr. Josef Mengele and his cohorts in the time of second world war had other ideas, they wanted to see a world of their chosen, vilifying every other segments of our world that did not fit in the equation of final solution, portraying the vulnerable of their society as unwanted, and executing the heartless scheme in the gloom of gas chambers and barbed wired prison camps. Sometimes, the world needs the good forces to be united to battle the evil like Hitler and Mengele, and the world did unite and had eliminated that existential threat, though the cost was steep, paid in millions of life lost in all over the world. One good thing came out of that war was the strengthening of human rights movements and international laws to implement it.
This is 21st century. We have other wars, other turmoils, disasters, economic meltdowns. Now the equation and calculation are not so linear, as the increasing variables have raised the complexity many folds. Human Rights are accepted by all the nations, though the implementation of the rights varies, and abrogated whenever is needed to serve jingoistic cause. One striking similarity that still exists between the time of angel of death and the modern era is the shrewd usage of fear among the gullible populace to further pre-selected agendas. Usage of fear can be termed as raw tool, that's been used thousands of years, perhaps from the beginning of human civilization. In fear, even the absurdest and the cruelest ideas can seem essential. In fear, we look other ways while Talibans or Mullahs stone women to death. In fear, we refrain from protesting draconian measures, like water boarding of prisoners, forceful confessions, hundreds of thousands of civilian life loss in the oily lands of faraway, or trampling of homes by bulldozers in the biblical lands.
Still, all hopes are not lost. Human beings perhaps are gullible, but their abilities to decipher the historical patterns are underestimated. Even in the face of death, battling cancer, activist does not give up the struggle to find the truth, like Mark Richard, a senior US Justice Department lawyer, whose relentless pursuance from 1999 for the complete publication of Nazi hunting report has started bearing fruit. In The New York Times article, the following are a few excerpts from startling discovery, the contents of which were suppressed all these years:
"The full report disclosed that the Justice Department found “a smoking gun” in 1997 establishing with “definitive proof” that Switzerland had bought gold from the Nazis that had been taken from Jewish victims of the Holocaust. But these references are deleted, as are disputes between the Justice and State Departments over Switzerland’s culpability in the months leading up to a major report on the issue.
Another section describes as “a hideous failure” a series of meetings in 2000 that United States officials held with Latvian officials to pressure them to pursue suspected Nazis. That passage is also deleted.
So too are references to macabre but little-known bits of history, including how a director of the O.S.I. kept a piece of scalp that was thought to belong to Dr. Mengele in his desk in hopes that it would help establish whether he was dead."Humanity is not shaped by any particular creed or nation. This is part of natural evolution and universal. Pursuance of truth and justice for the countless victims and to ensure the stoppage of brutality and oppression, regardless of one's origin, should rise above the ploys of masquerading fear and unchecked egos.