What if we’d treated the Nazis like the Khmer Rouge? The parallels between what happened in Germany and Cambodia are stark. So, why did we treat them so differently? Here is our take on alternate history.
The end of World War 2…..
As World War 2 draws to a close the nazi regime is removed from power by the Soviet Union alone. Germany thus becomes the German Democratic Republic, encompassing the whole of Germany, rather than just East Germany. A rump German resistance led by Adolph Hitler flee to a mountainous area on the border of Austria.
The Coalition Government of Nazi Germany
An opposition government os declared, which is joined by a small group of “liberal opposition”, as well as being supported by Kaiser Wilhelm II, the next in line to the German throne.
Cold War Politics and the Holocaust
The holocaust is acknowledged, but senior figures in the Nazi regime blame it on their underlings, not following orders. Western governments fearing Soviet hegemony in the region support this “rebel” army, an army which is dominated by Nazi fighters. Not only this, but we allow the Nazis to retain the “rightful” seat at the United Nations for a further 12 years. Until 1957 Joseph Goebbels is the UN representative for Germany at the UN.
Winston Churchill makes a statement that whilst the holocaust was a terrible thing and that Hitler “probably shouldn’t” have a say in a future German government, more moderate Nazis would need to be involved in the rebuilding of the country. The west does not recognize the GDR during this period.
Jews and enemies of the state are still persecuted in areas still controlled by the Nazis.
Peace is finally achieved
In 1959 after numerous peace talks are held the Soviets agree to withdraw from Germany, the country is renamed the Kingdom of Germany with Kaizer Wilhelms son taking throne.
Adolph HItler and the Nazi regime decide to stay in their mountainside stronghold and continue the Civil War. Germany becomes the most land mined country on earth. In 1962 Hitler orders the killing of Goebbels and Goring. The former he succeeds in the later he fails with.
The west do not pursue any of the perpetrators of the Holocaust. Adolph Hitler is put under house arrest in 1962 and dies of old page in 1964. By 1966 the Nazi rebels have all either been captured, or have defected to the government, most of them have been given Royal Pardons.
The Nuremberg Trials
By the early 1970’s it is decided that the remaining leaders should be tried for their crimes, but the legal process takes so long that by the end of the 1970’s and early 1980’s when they begin to stand trial, many have either already died, or have gone senile.
The Nazi rebels rebrand themselves as the German People’s Party and run the country under Strasserism.
This actually happened in Cambodia
So whilst this looks and seems ridiculous, if we swap each “character” for Khmer Rouge leaders, and the years for when this all occurred, then it is basically exactly the same.
So, when the question comes up of if the west supported the Khmer Rouge, then one merely has to swap Nazi Germany for the Khmer Rouge. This is not a scholarly debate, western crimes with regards to the Khmer Rouge are a proven thing, with all if it being done in the name of rolling back communism.
What if we’d treated the Nazis like the Khmer Rouge? The world would look very different today.