Ben Carson's Brutal and Uncomfortable Truth

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Would guns in the hands of the Jewish people have helped hinder the Holocaust? Ben Carson says yes, some in the news media say no. We discussed the good advice of the news the other day, and now Hernandez weighs in with another cold dose of reality. Mad Duo

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Ben Carson’s Brutal and Uncomfortable Truth

Chris Hernandez

Since Dr. Ben Carson – who I DO NOT support for president, by the way – gave his eminently sensible and reasonable opinion on gun control, he’s been painted as a moron by the left. He said,“I think the likelihood of Hitler being able to accomplish his goals would have been greatly diminished if the people had been armed.” This is such an obvious truth to anyone who understands history that opposition to it is unbelievable rather than simply ridiculous. Disagreeing with his statement makes about as much sense as insisting the earth is flat.

As a police officer, I know for a fact that an armed suspect is far more dangerous to take into custody than an unarmed suspect. As a combat veteran, I know for a fact that an armed population is far more difficult to control than an unarmed population. The insurgents in Iraq and Taliban in Afghanistan didn’t simply roll over and submit to our control. They took up weapons and fought back.

But many voices on the left, GQ and Funny Or Die prominent among them, now insist people are actually safer being unarmed when an armed murderer is trying to kill them. And the people who believe that nonsense, despite generally having zero understanding of weapons, lethal force encounters, combat or anything else remotely related to the subject, refuse to listen to cops, combat vets or others with actual experience. So I’m going to share an account of genocide that even the most ardent critic of Ben Carson shouldn’t be able to argue with.

Cover photo from the book Ordinary Men, by Christopher Browning
Unarmed and defenseless Jews rounded up for murder or deportation by German police. Cover photo from the book Ordinary Men, by Christopher Browning.

The following is a passage from the book Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning. The story can be found on pages 93 and 94. It is an account of German Reserve Police Battalion 101 (not a military unit, but regular police), which was part of the “Final Solution”, and its operation to clear Jews from the Polish town of Miedzyrzec. It’s worth noting that this operation was witnessed by one police captain’s pregnant wife, who had come to visit her new husband.

The usual orders were given to shoot anyone trying to escape, as well as the sick, old, and frail who could not march to the train station just outside town.

While the men waited for [Captain] Wohlauf ‘s return, they encountered a Security Police officer already quite drunk, despite the early hour. It was soon apparent that the Hiwis [Lithuanian, Latvian and Ukrainian volunteers] were also drunk. They shot so often and so wildly that the policemen frequently had to take cover to avoid being hit. The policemen “saw the corpses of Jews who had been shot everywhere in the streets and houses.”

Driven by the Hiwis and policemen, thousands of Jews streamed into the marketplace. Here they had to sit or squat without moving or getting up. As the hours passed on this very hot August day of the late summer heat wave, many Jews fainted and collapsed. Moreover, beating and shooting continued in the marketplace. Having removed her military coat as the temperature rose, Frau Wohlauf [the captain’s pregnant wife] was clearly visible in her dress on the marketplace, watching the events at close range.

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About 2:00 p. m. the outer guard was called to the marketplace, and one or two hours later the march to the train station began. 

The entire force of Hiwis and policemen was employed to drive the thousands of Jews along the route. Once again, shooting was common. The “foot sick” who could go no farther were shot and left lying on the side of the road. Corpses lined the street to the train station.

One final horror was reserved to the end, for the train cars now had to be loaded. While the Hiwis and Security Police packed 120 to 140 Jews into each car, the reserve policemen stood guard and observed. As one remembered: 

When it didn’t go well, they made use of riding whips and guns. The loading was simply frightful. There was an unearthly cry from these poor people, because ten or twenty cars were being loaded simultaneously. The entire freight train was dreadfully long. One could not see all of it. It may have been fifty to sixty cars, if not more. After a car was loaded, the doors were closed and nailed shut.

Once all the cars were sealed, the men of Reserve Police Battalion 101 quickly departed without waiting to see the train pull away.

The clearing of the Miedzyrzec ghetto was the largest deportation operation the battalion would carry out during its entire participation in the Final Solution. Only 1,000 Jews in Miedzyrzec had been given temporary work permits to remain in the ghetto until they could be replaced with Poles. Thus some 11,000 were targeted for deportation. The policemen knew that “many hundreds” of Jews were shot in the course of the operation, but of course they did not know exactly how many. The surviving Jews who collected and buried the bodies did know, however, and their count was 960.

Please ask yourself: did you read any mention of resistance in that passage?

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The Jews murdered or deported from Miedzyrzec didn’t fight back. They couldn’t. They had no weapons except possibly knives and farm implements, and were absolutely no threat to the men rounding up and killing them. That passage, which is drawn from accounts of the policemen themselves, shows not even a hint of worry on the part of the killers. The Hiwis were drunk. The policemen felt no need to take defensive measures. A pregnant woman in a German military coat was able to freely wander the area, with no fear of attack.

Now ask yourself what might have happened if 10% of the 11,000 Jews murdered or deported that day had been armed with rifles or pistols. If you honestly don’t know, or if you’ve taken leave of logic and insist “it wouldn’t have made a difference if the Jews were armed”, let me answer that for you.

This operation took some time, and shots were fired from the beginning. Bodies were strewn throughout the village early on. The Jews of Miedzyrzec realized quickly what awaited them. Had 10%, over a thousand people, been armed with concealed pistols and rifles capable of hitting a man at even 100 yards, they could have mounted a defense. They would have changed the dynamic from “murderous free for all” to “police and Hiwis have to fear for their lives”. The men who shot, beat and forced Jews onto trains without worry would have had to be on guard against an unexpected pistol shot to the back of the head, or an urban sniper’s bullet from a darkened window.

Had their victims been armed, Police Battalion 101 would have faced a fight instead of a leisurely day of genocide. And keep in mind, these weren’t hardened SS warriors; they were regular civilian policemen, older than their German Army counterparts, who had homes and families to which they wanted to return. Some of them did quietly return to civilian police work after the war. They weren’t dedicated to murder even at the cost of their own lives (some refused to take part in the operations). They likely would have been far less willing to commit mass murder had they faced even the possibility of their own deaths.

History shows us that killing unarmed, defenseless people is easy. Killing armed and angry people is much harder. Facing men and women who are protecting their children with guns is a nightmare. Even if the Nazis had “won” at Miedzyrzec, their victory might have come at such a prohibitively high cost as to discourage other planned operations. At the very least, every operation would have required far more men and resources, which would have lowered the number of towns the Nazis could clear.

This photo was sent by a German soldier to his mother.
A German soldier sent this photo to his mother.

In short, armed resistance to the Nazis, even if it didn’t stop the Holocaust, would have saved lives.

Of course, GQ, Funny or Die, and who knows how many other liberal sites will mock this idea. Those who have joined the “guns don’t make you safer!” cult won’t consider past history, or current events in the Middle East, or even the painful truths revealed every time defenseless people are slaughtered by a lunatic right here in America. These people – for whatever reason – hate guns so much that they refuse to acknowledge the simplest of facts: when someone is trying to murder you, fighting back is a better option than letting them murder you. And the best way to fight back is with a gun. You do not somehow become safer by being a better victim.

Don’t believe me? Ask the Jews. Six million disarmed and defenseless Jews were murdered by the Nazis. Israeli Jews are now armed to the teeth. Several Arab countries, full of people who hate Jews at least as much as Hitler, have tried several times to wipe Israel off the map. They’ve failed every time. Is it possible – is it just crazy enough to be true – that Israeli Jews haven’t been massacred because they’re armed, trained and willing to fight back?

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Many of our fellow citizens lead such sheltered lives, have been so safe for so long, they don’t even comprehend the danger that exists outside the college campuses and coffeehouses where they confirm each others’ idiotic bias against about guns. They don’t really believe so-called humans would laugh and praise their god as they shot innocent children, or raped terrified women, or gassed and burned defenseless men. Yet that kind of human exists, and has existed for our entire history. Those people can only be stopped with brute force. GQ and Funny or Die can’t reason with them, or explain to them that guns are bad so they don’t need them.

Ben Carson has said some dumb things. What he said about the Holocaust was not one of them. An armed population is in fact harder to massacre than an unarmed population. That is the brutal and uncomfortable truth.

-Hernandez

Mad Duo, Breach-Bang& CLEAR!

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breachbangclear.com_site_images_Chris_Hernandez_Author_BreachBangClear4Chris Hernandez Mad Duo Chris (seen here on patrol in Afghanistan) may just be the crustiest member of the eeeee-LIGHT writin’ team here at Breach-Bang-Clear. He is a veteran of both the Marine Corps and the Army National Guard who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. He is also a veteran police officer of two decades who spent a long (and eye-opening) deployment as part of a UN police mission in Kosovo. He is the author of White Flags & Dropped Rifles – the Real Truth About Working With the French Army and The Military Within the Military as well as the modern military fiction novels Line in the Valley and Proof of Our Resolve. When he isn’t groaning about a change in the weather and snacking on Osteo Bi-Flex he writes on his own blog, Iron Mike Magazine, Kit Up! and Under the Radar. You can find his author page here on Tactical 16.

Chris Hernandez

Chris Hernandez may just be the crustiest member of the eeeee-LITE writin’ team here at Breach-Bang-Clear. He is a veteran of both the Marine Corps and the Army National Guard who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. He is also a veteran police officer of two decades who spent a long (and eye-opening) deployment as part of a UN police mission in Kosovo. He is the author of White Flags & Dropped Rifles – the Real Truth About Working With the French Army and The Military Within the Military as well as the modern military fiction novels Line in the Valley, Proof of Our Resolve and Safe From the War. When he isn’t groaning about a change in the weather and snacking on Osteo Bi-Flex he writes on his own blog.


Chris Hernandez has 115 posts and counting. See all posts by Chris Hernandez

22 thoughts on “Ben Carson's Brutal and Uncomfortable Truth

  • October 14, 2015 at 10:31 pm
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    I agree with your sentiment. My only objection is the example. Pre-WW2 Jewish communities were controlled by elders. Elders had dictated for about 1500 years that Jewish communities were to take passively the fate god had dealt them. The belief was that god was punishing Jews for their sins. So honestly even if 10% of the Jewish population was armed, which in urban areas may have been true, there wouldn’t have been any resistance. Obviously, late WW2 and post WW2 that thought process changes significantly. The Jewish communities that suffered the largest loses, specifically in elders and spiritual leaders, eventually became incredibly violent and their resistance was incredibly effective considering the tools at their disposal. Just FYI lol, no point really to my comment.

    Reply
  • October 14, 2015 at 2:25 pm
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    As I understand it, at the start of the Jewish final solution, the Jewish community went to their religious leaders for guidance. The Jews felt a special relationship with God and saw the initial round up as part of God’s plan to punish them for some separation they had placed between themselves and God. At the time, genocide was not even a word.

    So the Jewish leaders decided to be passive about the round-up. Surely, God would protect them as their “sin” was burned off in the fires of persecution. They would endure as they had for thousands of years.

    Some members urged the community to fight, to resist the Nazis, but that was inconceivable. It would be resisting God’s will and just make their time of purification longer.

    By the time the Jewish community realized that God was not about to take care of them, it was too late. The final solution was chugging along under its own steam in most places. In Treblinka things took a different turn, the Jews planned, seized weapons and with help from the resistance fought their way to freedom. It was short lived.

    Adolf demanded the leaders be captures and terminated, razed the camp and transferred all the troops involved to the Russian front because he was terrified this idea would spread to other camps. It didn’t. I remember the pictures of the camps and survivors I saw in a display in college. I was ill then, and I still get ill thinking about them.

    Look at these pictures and ask, why the Jews? Why not blacks? Why not Catholics? Why not poor? Why not you and me?

    I always remember images of hundreds being loaded into boxcars by one man with a sub gun. Why didn’t they fight back? Why didn’t they take the gun and stick it up Adolf’s ass?

    I don’t know, but I do know they would have been better off if they were armed.

    Moreover, when I talk to Jewish friends and ask them if they own a gun, if they practice, if they want to go to the range, I get “Oh no, we have laws to protect ourselves.”

    It is a lesson that seems easy to learn, but somehow too many of us do not.

    Reply
  • October 14, 2015 at 1:16 pm
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    This is all well and good but it does nothing to address the problem America has with Guns; Firearms are too accessible and are not revered properly by Americans. What I mean to say is owning a gun should not be a right because not all men are created equal — some people just can’t be trusted with a lethal weapon. Before owning a gun it is a good idea to ensure the owner is responsible and intelligent enough to use it properly. Too many low IQ’d morons believe it’s part of their culture to carry around a locked and loaded glock because its their “God given right”. Low and behold someones 10 year old nephew gets a hold of it and shoots his 8 year old neighbor because he wasn’t allowed to pet her dog. The NRA owes it to its members and the citizens of the US to do more in the way of restricting guns from those who are not worthy of carrying because whats more dangerous than an armed society? An intelligent one.

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    • October 15, 2015 at 11:12 am
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      So, who decides who gets the privilege of owning a firearm? You? Unaccountable and risk-averse regulators? What defensable legal standard will be applied to weed out “low IQ morons”? Is the belief that your rights are a gift from God a disqualifier? How do you propose to explain to the American people that only certified intelligent (by your standard) people will have the privilege of defending themselves with effective tools?

      Intelligent people are not granted special dispensation from doing monumentally stupid things, and in the Dunning-Kruger day care called America, an intelligent society is indeed a very, very dangerous thing.

      Reply
  • October 14, 2015 at 2:51 am
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    @Jon When you refer to “never again” I would like to point out to you the uncomfortable similarity between the Warsaw ghetto of 1940 and the modern day ghetto of palestine.

    Just because the jewish people are on the other side of the wall this time doesn’t mean that it’s the right thing to do.

    Reply
  • October 14, 2015 at 2:43 am
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    I’m not sure whether I agree with the argument. My reasons are the history of the french and balkan resistance movements.

    They had guns and they were able to inflict some casualties on the german forces. However these casualties were insignificant and were answered by the incredibly brutal anti-partisan units, who would end up slaughtering entire villages in response to one single partisan attack.

    In essence the result of these partisan attacks, quite often was a horrific loss of life, not for the german forces, but for the partisans. For every german soldier killed in these attacks, very often 10 civilians would be executed as reprisal until the local population gave up the identities of the resistance fighters. These tactics were brutal, but they were effective.

    Another thing you are completely neglecting in your article is the psychology of genocide and the mental states of people on the verge of execution. The phenomenon of total compliance in the victims, even though that know they are about to be murdered is a very pervasive one. Many psychologists believe this is due to a preservational instinct whereby as long as one obeys the dominant person there is a chance of survival. Now obviously this doesn’t actually work in most cases of genocidal execution, but the impulse is incredibly strong and I doubt you or I could overcome it.

    I think you use a very common sense argument that an armed population is harder to control than an unarmed population, but I think you neglect a lot of psychological factors that in these situations become utterly paramount.

    If I really wanted to rattle your branch I would say something along the lines of “Look at the US general population, they are heavily armed but have voluntarily agreed to give up their civil liberties and any semblance of privacy and are being controlled as we speak. And the craziest thing is none of them are fighting back. Even when an entire ethnic minority is being criminalised and shot on the streets they do nothing to defend themselves. They have guns, why don’t they fight?”

    Reply
    • October 14, 2015 at 7:09 am
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      George,

      I’m not arguing that armed resistance is perfect or undefeatable. I am arguing, however, that it is objectively harder to kill people who are armed and willing to fight back. Every historical situation will be different; I could use Finland as an example of (mostly) successful armed resistance against nearly overwhelming odds, but that wouldn’t prove it always works, just as the French and Balkan partisans don’t prove it never works. I’m reducing this to simple principle: it is much harder to kill someone who might kill you back than it is to kill an compliant victim.

      Your point about psychological factors is valid. Obviously, many of the Jews in that situation lacked the psychological makeup to fight. However, there were Jewish uprisings. There were Jewish resistance groups. The widespread passive mindset among Jews seemed to have evaporated by 1947, when Israel fought its first war. The attitudes that allowed many Jews to be killed without a fight changed relatively quickly.

      And sorry bro, there is no “entire ethnic minority being criminalized and shot on the streets”. That’s absolute nonsense.

      Reply
    • October 14, 2015 at 7:46 pm
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      George, I have to take issue with the statement that you made (and Chris implicitly accepted) claiming the Balkan resistance movements were ineffective. To the contrary, not only were they the only ones successful in liberating their own countries, they additionally tied down large numbers of Axis soldiers that were desperately needed elsewhere, in November of 43 Churchill even stated that.

      It was a lamentable fact that virtually no supplies had been conveyed by sea to the 222,000 followers of Tito. … These stalwarts were holding as many Germans in Yugoslavia as the combined Anglo-American forces were holding in Italy south of Rome.

      That was just in Yugoslavia by the way. Now I don’t know if you’ve read Day of Battle, or anything else about the war in Italy, but if they were holding their own against a force as large as we were facing, with a fraction of the resources, then their resistance far from being ineffective, had substantial strategic effects, and saved many allied lives during our offensives that year.

      As for Jewish resistance, it is true that early resistance was minimal, though Jews were mostly disarmed, and in Germany itself, were a helplessly tiny minority anyway. But, even lacking in arms, equipment, supplies and cooperation from mostly anti-semitic local resistance groups, several uprisings were planned and executed Mila 18 anyone? In part the psychological barriers to active resistance you mentioned exist because the chance of successful unarmed resistance seems low in comparison to other survival options (i.e. hiding or escape and evasion) in other words armed groups are inherently more likely to resist than unarmed ones.

      Reply
      • October 14, 2015 at 10:36 pm
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        Actually, I wasn’t sure what effect Tito’s partisans had and specifically didn’t address that. I knew they caused the Germans problems, but didn’t know to what extent. When I was in Kosovo I met an old man who was very proud to have been one of Tito’s partisans, and I saw several monuments to them.

        Thanks for the info, I need to read up on that part of the war.

        Reply
  • October 13, 2015 at 11:11 pm
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    Good article. Carson was correct. An unarmed population is easy to control. My advice to anyone complaining about Carsons comments should be to stop, otherwise you’ve gone as they say in Tropic Thunder, “full retard”

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  • October 13, 2015 at 10:54 pm
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    There is a reason why a frequent destination for IDF beret marches is Masada. Masada is a local representation of what happens when you stop fighting. The Jews there held out for years against the Romans, but knew that ultimately they would be defeated and decided to deny the Romans a chance to seal their victory with a slaughter.

    Now Israeli soldiers endure 35+ mile marches to this site to recite the ever present phrase “Never again.” and the rest of the world would do well to recognize the bloody lessons learned by the Jews before we see these scenes repeated on the nightly news.

    Reply
  • October 13, 2015 at 9:49 pm
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    Now keep in mind what Bashar al-Assad is doing in Syria, he is trying to commit genocide on his own people, and what did our liberal government do? I’ll tell you what we did, we armed the citizens with guns.

    During the Nazi genocide our American government contracted a company, which you all know very well, by the name of General Motors, developed a plan to arm the Jews for a resistance with small pistols by the name of the “Liberator” FP-45 which was a single shot 45acp pistol that was designed for concealment and used to shoot the Nazi soldier and then take their service weapon. This was a plan that we were working on to help the Jews and those that would have been eradicate… Well those guns never made it to them… but can you imagine what the turnout would have been if they had? The Jews would have had a fighting chance…

    Later in that same war, Japan opted not to invade the U.S. because “there would be a gun behind every blade of grass”

    Now what is worrying me about today is OUR GOVERNMENT is trying to take them from us, so we would not have a fighting chance. So now the big question is WHAT DO WE DO?

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  • October 13, 2015 at 6:58 pm
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    I REALIZE THAT SO MANY PEOPLE DO NOT CARE TO HAVE A GUN, I DO, WAS RAISED TO HUNT, FISH, AND SURVIVE, I WAS TAUGHT TO FIGHT BACK NO MATTER WHAT, I KNOW IT IS A MATTER OF TIME, MARTIAL LAW WILL COME AND SO WILL SO MANY DEATHS IN AMERICA, YES WE ALL NEED GUNS TO TAKE CARE OF LOVED ONES OR OTHERS IN HARM OF SUCH EVIL!

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  • October 13, 2015 at 6:35 pm
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    Idiotic for a number of reasons and factually false as well. For example, your claim of “Israeli Jews are now armed to the teeth.”. Israel actually has quite strong gun restrictions and very low gun ownership rates, some of the lowest in the developed world.

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  • October 13, 2015 at 6:16 pm
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    Hitler and his generals saw armed jews as enough of a threat to make sure the Jews were unarmed. Obviously if Hitler thought it was a threat then that should put an end to the debate. Had Hitler needed to focus on an internal guerilla struggle he would not have been able to focus on invading other countries.

    Reply

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