Inside a glass case in a “secret” CIA museum is a swastika-emblazoned letter written on Adolf Hitler’s personal stationery that was delivered to the museum the day after Osama bin Laden died.
The handwritten letter, sent by future CIA Director Richard Helms to his 3-year-old son at the close of World War II, may not be as ominous as bin Laden’s AK-47 featured in this exclusive NBC News report, which rests in another of the private museum’s display cases. But it too serves as both a trophy of war and a reminder of evil.
“Dear Dennis,” reads the letter from Helms, then a spy stationed in Germany. “The man who might have written on this card once controlled Europe – three short years ago when you were born. Today he is dead, his memory despised, his country in ruins. He had a thirst for power, a low opinion of man as an individual, and a fear of intellectual honesty. He was a force for evil in the world. His passing, his defeat – a boon for mankind. But thousands died that it might be so. The price for ridding society of bad is always high. Love, Daddy."
Among Barbara Tuchman’s many sins as an historian was the notion, propagated in her popular volume The Guns of August (1962), that the Great Powers had more or less blundered into conflict in 1914, and that smarter diplomacy might well have prevented the Great War.
Last week, Sarah Palin, a former vice presidential candidate for the Republican Party and grassroots darling who serves in no elected or official capacity, tweeted a link to a Thomas Sowell column that included a reference to Nazi tactics. Democrats were outraged that she seemingly endorsed the comparison Sowell made.