The International Herald Tribune reports that high school seniors in Italy are being taught that communism is bad. Actually, it reports that people are complaining that high school seniors in Italy are being taught that communism is bad.
The evils of communism appear front and center in one of the themes that hundreds of thousands of Italian high school seniors could choose to write about in graduation exams given this month. That topic invited students to ponder "terror and the political repression in the totalitarian systems" of the 20th century and gives brief descriptions of fascism in Italy, Nazism in Germany and communism in the former Soviet Union and other countries.
Communism is blamed for the executions of about 100 million people, five times greater than the killings attributed in the exam to Nazism.
In the wording of the topic, it takes one sentence to denigrate fascism. It takes four to vilify communism.
Some historians and teachers have complained that the balance of the question is out of whack. "I teach my students that of course communism must be seen in a negative light, but the goal of Nazism was to kill people, and the goal of communism was to unite them," said Giuseppe Costantino, 61, who teaches history in a high school in Naples.
Yes, what's a hundred or so million dead anyway? Their hearts were in the right place. Still, a history teacher should know that Nazism also shared the goal of uniting people. You know, "Ein Volk" and such. So where, I ask you, are the calls for a balanced discussion on Nazism?
Coincidentally, Saddam Hussein is another chap who means well:
"Unify your ranks and act as one hand," the voice said on the Al Hayat-LBC broadcast. "Boycott the occupying soldiers ... Act and do not let the occupying forces settle down in your land."
"He who favors division over unity, and acts to divide ranks instead of unifying them, is not only a servant of the foreign occupier but he is also the enemy of God and the people," the voice said on the Al-Jazeera broadcast.
Jeebus, with uniters like these, give me good ol' fashioned divisiveness any day.