The Universe of Discourse

Fri, 17 May 2024

Horst Wessel and John Birch

Is this a coincidence?

I just noticed the parallel between John Birch of the John Birch Society (“who the heck is John Birch?”) and the Horst Wessel of the Horst Wessel song (“who the heck is Horst Wessel?”).

In both cases it turns out to be nobody in particular, and the more you look into why the two groups canonized their particular guy, the less interesting it gets.

Is this a common pattern of fringe political groups? Right-wing fringe political groups? No other examples came immediately to mind. Did the Italian Fascists venerate a similar Italian nobody?

Addendum 20240517

Is it possible that the John Birch folks were intentionally emulating this bit of Nazi culture?

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