Juan Cole Race

Tucker Carlson’s ‘Great Replacement’ Theory Comes from an Anti-American Nazi

Why has the American far right adopted an anti-American conspiracy theory as its rallying cry?
A Charlottesville, Virginia memorial for Heather Heyer, who was killed by a neo-Nazi while protesting against white supremacy. (Shutterstock) 

By Juan Cole / OtherWords

Before a hate-filled 18-year-old murdered 10 and wounded 3 African Americans in Buffalo on May 14, he penned a rambling screed about replacement theory.

The most common version of this whiny idea, imported from the more hysterical fringes of the French far right, holds that Jewish capitalists are importing cheap immigrant labor to replace more highly-paid white workers.

Notoriously, the Nazis who marched in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017 against the removal of Confederate statues chanted “Jews will not replace us.” The shooter who killed 11 Jewish Americans at a Pittsburgh synagogue in 2018 also espoused the idea of the “great replacement.”

This hateful ideology is shamelessly promoted by Fox News. The worst offender is the Lord Haw-Haw of the 21st century, Tucker Carlson, who exposed his audience to great replacement excrement 400 times in the past year.

Republican legislators across the United States have been passing laws against teaching critical race theory, which hasn’t killed anyone — and which helps us understand the effect of ideas like the great replacement. But they don’t seem to be as eager to legislate against Nazi ideas.

And make no mistake: The great replacement is an explicitly Nazi idea.

The theory originated in Europe and had many exponents of various stripes. But the phrase, and the most extensive elaboration of the theory, originated with the French Nazi René Binet (1913-1957), who served during World War II in the Waffen Grenadier Brigade of the SS Charlemagne, which consisted of French Nazi collaborators.

You don’t get more fascist than that. The Charlemagne Brigade included the last troops to defend Hitler’s bunker before his suicide.

Binet fulminated after the war against “the invasion of Europe by Negroes and Mongols,” by which he meant the Americans and Soviets who fought the Nazis. A biological racist, he saw all Americans as an impure mestizo “race.”

So this now far right American nationalist idea actually originated in hatred for Americans and a denigration of their supposed “whiteness” by the European right, which did not see Russians as “white” either.

Unlike cowardly boot-lickers like Binet, the true patriots of the period were the multicultural French. The French Army and then De Gaulle’s Free French Army included thousands of riflemen (or Tirailleurs) from Senegal. 

History.net explains: “During World War II the French recruited 179,000 Tirailleurs; some 40,000 were deployed to Western Europe. Many were sent to bolster the French Maginot Line along its border with Germany and Belgium during the German invasion in 1940 — where many were killed or taken prisoner.”

Even after the fall of France, these Senegalese fighters “served in the Free French army in Tunisia, Corsica, and Italy, and in the south of France during the liberation.”

I had two uncles who served in World War II, one at the Battle of the Bulge. In my family, we’re not in any doubt that it was the multi-racial Allies who were the good guys. With famous units like the Tuskegee Airmen, who bombed Nazi targets, the Allies drew srength from their diversity — and that gave them the strength to prevail.

People like Tucker Carlson are pitifully ignorant of history and so are wielding an anti-American, highly unpatriotic notion for the sake of their television ratings. Ironically, Tucker’s intellectual forebear, Binet, would have considered him a mongrel.

As defenders of illiberalism and implicitly of hatred of Jews, these useful idiots of the far right are symbolically still deployed around Hitler’s bunker, defending it from the approaching Allies.

Juan Cole

Juan Cole is the Richard P. Mitchell Professor of History at the University of Michigan and the founder and editor of Informed Comment. This op-ed was adapted from Informed Comment and distributed by OtherWords.org. 

16 comments

  1. “As defenders of illiberalism and implicitly of hatred of Jews, these useful idiots of the far right are symbolically still deployed around Hitler’s bunker, defending it from the approaching Allies.”

    From the perspective of an observer living in London, UK, this be parsed this way too:

    “As defenders of Atlanticist exceptionalism and implicitly of hatred of Russia, these dangerous servants of the military-industrial-judicial-parliamentary-security service- academia-media- think tank complex are systematically deployed around Zelensky’s bunker, defending it from the forces of liberation.”

    Fascism arrives through the back door, unannounced, dressed in the brightly coloured garb of “democracy” “freedom” and “humanitarianism” setting the rules for others which they themselves violate seemingly with impunity.

    Meanwhile, Sweden and Finland sign the collective suicide note

  2. Slight correction. The Tuskegee Airmen were mostly fighter pilots who escorted American bombers in their missions over Europe. They prided themselves for rarely losing a bomber to enemy fighter attacks, and one Tuskegee pilot, was the first American pilot to shoot down the new German jet fighter, the ME-262.

    Sadly, the US military largely adopted the idea of Black racial inferiority in its policies during the war. Most Black draftees were relegated to logistical support roles in their various units. And even then, they were always under the command of a white officer.

    1. Once, at a law firm where I worked in 2008, the firm hosted a lecture by one of the surviving Tuskegee airmen, Lt. Col. James C, Warren. I bought a copy of his book, The Tuskegee Airmen: Mutiny at Freeman Field” and he signed it for me. His lecture was very interesting and informative and it was an honor to meet him.

    2. The Tuskegee Airmen were not the only black unit that won distinction in the war. General Patton, one of WWIIs luminaries, announced in ’44 that he wanted the best God-damned tank outfit in the U.S. That unit was the 761st tank battalion, an all black unit. Of course the nay-sayers said,”the nigra can’t drive a tank. It confuses the nigra.” Jackie Robinson was assigned to the unit as a second lieutenant and while everyone feels that Rosa Parks was the first sit-in, it was Jackson who refused to get to the back of the bus and went through court-martial. He was acquitted but he remained a 2nd Lieutenant through the end of the war.

  3. The reason they will not legislate against Nazi ideas is because we are run by NAZI’s. IN WW2 we brought in under Project Paperclip over 1400 sworn NAZI Scientists who quickly rose to levels of power in Government (Werner Von Braune) and Business such as Skunk Works etc. Their ideologies never died. They are very active in the huge Corporations and these Corporations are pressing their ideologies into government today. After WW2, I believe Hitler made it to Argentina, some of his most prized scientits went to Antarctica to continue their work on super advanced technologies such as anti-gravity, which Admiral Byrd experienced when he went there with an armada of military might only to suffer quick and decisive defeat. Believe it or not, the NAZI’s lost Germany but gained control over the world because of their advanced technologies, and because they had 1400+ Nazi’s entrenched in Business and Government, exactly where they wanted them after WW2, And Admiral Byrd’s defeat, sent a message to the Military Ind Complex, “don’t f with us or else” and its been that way ever since. The govt can never admit this. But it is coming out right now. And when it does, Blessing for a Brand New World.

  4. What will it take for the American people to see what’s going on right before their eyes?

    NATO and the US are simulating a war on Russia because that’s the plan. These are massive, integrated, combined-arms exercises that are structured in a way that best addresses the strengths of a particular​ enemy. And that enemy is Russia. Can’t you see that?

    And have you noticed how it’s suddenly okay to talk openly about war with Russia? Among the cadres of retired generals that appear regularly on the cable news channels and their chest-thumping allies in the Democrat party, all sense of caution has been completely abandoned. They’re no longer deterred by the threat of nuclear war because– according to them– the US will prevail in a nuclear war and, besides, they all agree that it is worth the risk. Maybe you think I’m kidding, but I’m not kidding. The prevailing view among establishment elites has fundamentally changed. These people want a war with Russia and they want it now. Their lust for war has completely eclipsed their fear of nuclear annihilation. It’s madness.

    And Germany has joined the rush-to-war despite the fact that it will trigger an unprecedented energy crisis followed by a severe economic slump that could last for years. In short, Scholz has committed economic hari-kari to placate his masters in Washington. Here’s more from the WSWS:

    “Germany is using the war to remove all obstacles that previously stood in the way of unrestrained rearmament… First, the German government increased the arms budget by €100 billion… and abandoned the principle of not supplying weapons to war zones. Ukraine was first supplied with light and then with heavy weapons. In the meantime, Ukrainian soldiers are also being trained on German soil…

    The German government’s preparations for a Third World War are not limited to arming the Bundeswehr (Armed Forces) and providing military support to Ukraine…. The former editor-in-chief of finance daily Handelsblatt, Gabor Steingart, speaks bluntly about this in his “Pioneer Briefing” on Tuesday. Without the slightest qualms, he discusses the question of what is required to make a world war “manageable”:

    “The waging of a Third World War is not just a military issue,” he proclaims. It is “first and foremost an economic issue. For without economic disentanglement along the power and military blocs, effective warfare that can be sustained over a longer period is impossible, as we can already see from Germany’s dependence on Russian natural gas.”

    “Whoever wants to make world warfare manageable must first unbundle world trade,” Steingart emphasises. “Economic independence is more important than billions more for the Bundeswehr. So, it is not only the soldiers and their military equipment that must be gathered into an offensive formation, but also economic resources.”

    “Viewed with this economic eye,” he then states, “the preparations for making a Third World War manageable are in full swing.”..

    The insane policy of preparing a third world war and making it “manageable” is supported by all parties represented in the Bundestag… Germany must “urgently define its national interests against the background of the new reality” and “adopt a national show of strength to implement and safeguard them,” it says. “To meet this challenge, comprehensive military capabilities are needed, which will also entail many a sacrifice and burden.” (“Germany’s preparations for a third world war in full swing“, World Socialist Web Site)

    Do you still think the idea of a Third World War is far-fetched?

    RE: Mike Whitney

  5. I wouldn’t be too quick to praise the French. Like most colonial powers, they made use of any manpower available. Not all of it voluntary. It is interesting to note that persons of color also served with the German army. According to a first hand account by an acquaintance who lived through the war as a boy, he encountered a contingent of Indian soldiers (in German uniform) somewhere in the area of Stuttgart in May 1945. They had apparently enlisted to fight the British. Intrigued, he inquired about them some days later and was told that they had been murdered by the French occupation forces. I have no reason to disbelieve this story. I am certain with all the volumes of WWII history, there must be some stories like this.

  6. Is there an English translation of the French article? A very illuminating post. As usual, the far right is cobbling together different bits of hatred to fuel their own exterminism. I’m feeling like I’m actually living out A Canticle For Leibowitz. Human civilization (if we can even call it that) will be ground to poisonous radioactive rubble and dust.

  7. While the current expression of replacement theory has racist origins, many forget that in the 1800’s the ruling class shipped in one nationality/ethnicity after another to undermine workers fighting for survivable working conditions.

    Immigrants in settler colonial states often take part in the genocide/replacement of native people with the few exceptions such as white savages who fled colonies to live with natives.

    White supremacy is one of the best tools ruling elites have to keep us fighting each other instead of dealing w our common problems.

    Some anarchist unions welcomed all regardless of race, gender, skill, age, religion, nationality since they saw leaving others out of the fold would lead to competition with them.

  8. Malcolm X after over one year tour over colonial Africa and ME in 1960s witnessing there widespread skin color agnostic multifactor racism and tribal hatred including chattel slavery among African population under colonial rule completely revised his outlook on racism in US and the west and what it really was. MLK followed him soon.

    In front of 20,000 blacks Malcolm X dared to proclaim that there is no inherent racism in any human heart but there is wide spread institutional racism as diversion from systemic socioeconomic injustice and class war that starts with propagandized educational institutions, economic legal and political and social institutions that spread fear, distrust, division, segregation and discrimination for whatever reasons color of skin is used when possible ethnic, tribal differences when possible, sectarian differences when possible and most of all socioeconomic status of castes or classes used for internal divisions among peoples of the same country.

    Mohammad Ali expressed similar to Malcolm X sensibilities by rejecting US racist military attitude to Vietnamese saying that, paraphrasing “I ain’t going over there (to Vietnam) to kill some guy I don’t know who did nothing.” Mohammad Ali rejected vilification, discrimination and pure institutional racism and hatred US Army spewed among Vietnam war conscripts to prep them to become murderous cannon fodder for fascist American political and MIC elites.

    MLK finally acknowledge systemic nature of discrimination including racism worldwide and called America (an institution) was worst purveyor of violence (domestically as well as) in the world.

    To get rid of racism or any discrimination one must first remove institutions of social injustice that promote and finance it.

  9. Oh?

    Context and Run-Up

    To fully understand the Jewish hand in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, we need to review some relevant history. Over the centuries, there have been constant battles over the lands of present-day Ukraine, with Poles, Austro-Hungarians, and Russians alternately dominating. Russia took control of most of Ukraine in the late 1700s and held it more or less continuously until the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1991; this is why Putin claims that the country is “part of Russia.”

    For their part, Jews have experienced a particularly tumultuous relationship with Russia, one that ranged from disgust and detestation to a burning hatred. As it happened, Jews migrated to Russia in the 19th century, eventually numbering around 5 million. They were a disruptive and agitating force within the nation and thus earned the dislike of Czars Nicholas I (reign 1825 to 1855), Alexander II (1855 to 1881, when he was assassinated by a partly-Jewish anarchist gang), and especially Nicholas II (1894 to 1917)—the latter of whom was famously murdered, along with his family, by a gang of Jewish Bolshevists in 1918. Already in 1871, Russian activist Mikhail Bakunin could refer to the Russian Jews as “a single exploiting sect, a sort of bloodsucker people, a collective parasite”.[1] The assassination of Alexander initiated a series of pogroms that lasted decades, and which set the stage for a lingering Jewish hatred of all things Russian.[2]

    For present purposes, though, we can jump to the 2004 Ukrainian presidential election (I note that Ukraine also has a prime minister, but unlike most European countries, he typically has limited powers). In 2004, it came down to “the two Viktors”: the pro-Western V. Yushchenko and the pro-Russian V. Yanukovych. The first round was nearly tied, and thus they went to a second round in which Yanukovych prevailed by around three percentage points. But amid claims of vote-rigging, Western Ukrainians initiated an “Orange Revolution”—backed by the Ukrainian Supreme Court—that annulled those results and mandated a repeat runoff election. The second time, the tables were turned, and the pro-West Yushchenko won by eight points. The West was elated, and Putin naturally mad as hell.

    The following years witnessed financial turmoil and, unsurprisingly, constant harassment from Russia. By 2010, Ukrainians were ready for a change, and this time Yanukovych won handily, over a Jewish female competitor, Yulia Timoshenko—notably, she had “co-led the Orange Revolution.” Russia, for once, was satisfied with the result.

    But of course, in the West, Europe and the US were mightily displeased, and they soon began efforts to reverse things yet again. Among other strategies, they apparently decided to deploy the latest in high tech and social media. Thus in June 2011, two of Google’s top executives—Eric Schmidt and a 30-year-old Jewish upstart named Jared Cohen—went to visit Julian Assange in the UK, then living under house arrest. It is well-known, incidentally, that Google is a Jewish enterprise, with Jewish founders Sergei Brin and Larry Page running the ship.[3]

    The nominal purpose of the trip was to conduct research for a book that Schmidt and Cohen were working on, regarding the intersection of political action and technology—in plain words, how to foment revolutions and steer events in a desired direction. As Assange relates in his 2014 book When Google Met Wikileaks, he was initially unaware of the deeper intentions and motives of his interviewers. Only later did he come to learn that Schmidt had close ties to the Obama administration, and that Cohen was actively working on political upheaval. As Assange wrote, “Jared Cohen could be wryly named Google’s ‘director of regime change’.” Their immediate targets were Yanukovych in Ukraine and Assad in Syria.

    +–+

    John M, 2015: https://youtu.be/JrMiSQAGOS4

    John J. Mearsheimer, the R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor in Political Science and Co-director of the Program on International Security Policy at the University of Chicago, assesses the causes of the present Ukraine crisis, the best way to end it, and its consequences for all of the main actors. A key assumption is that in order to come up with the optimum plan for ending the crisis, it is essential to know what caused the crisis. Regarding the all-important question of causes, the key issue is whether Russia or the West bears primary responsibility.

    +–+

    Oh, this room temperature IQ winner!

    George W. Bush outlines Ukraine’s mission to prankster

    Speaking to a Russian prankster, the 43rd US president advised Ukraine to “destroy as many Russian troops as you can”

    Speaking to a Russian prankster posing as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Former US President George W. Bush advised Kiev to focus on eliminating as many Russian troops as possible. Bush suggested that a military victory over Russia would see many of Ukraine’s issues “go off the table.”

    The undated prank phone call was staged by the Russian prankster duo known as Vovan and Lexus. They have made a name for themselves calling Western and Ukrainian politicians disguised as other officials to hear what they really think about various issues, often related to Russia. Some critics claim that the duo work for the Russian government.

    In their latest call, one of the pranksters reminded the ex-president of how his administration recognized Serbia’s Kosovo breakaway region as independent back in 2007. The caller went on to suggest that President Putin essentially took this straight out of Bush’s playbook when he recognized the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics as independent in late February. The former US president left the remark pretty much unanswered, merely replying “Yes, right, right…”

    However, Bush then offered his thoughts on the problem of the two breakaway Donbass republics.

    “I think if you prevail, when you prevail, a lot of these other issues go off the table” – he said.

  10. CIA Cole that has endorsed every US invasion in the ME —a true fascist, belongs in the same club as bolton Biden and the worst imperialist, Obama

  11. Corporations from El Norte have been advertising in the empire’s backyard – if I recall correctly, with generous support from taxpayers through the USAID and NED – at least since the enclosure of the commons known as NAFTA dispossessed millions of land and set up the desperate conditions to drive herds of laboring animals into their waiting arms, or rather arms factories. (On a positive note, the first official day of NAFTA on January 1st, 1994 was met by Zapatista resistance.)

    I doubt either political party front of the corporate state managing resources of the ruling class might similarly be recruiting voters. Why bother? The representative system of Demokracy, Inc. is rigged, just like the free market, and – short of working class movements and parties – has nothing to fear from any of the exploited masses, many or most of whom don’t bother to vote, anyway.

    But those in charge do like to divide us and our attention from the class system at work along the racial divides by which capital rule has colonized the world,. They work so well because their mythology becomes so real for true believers as to replace class with civil war, especially when staged by undercover cops on opposing sides.

    Sound like Charlottesville, for example? Suppressed evidence indicates police pulled back to allow escalation of tension to the tragic point it reached. It’s not alone as a candidate for campaigns of counterinsurgency warfare and color revolution creating incidents to destabilize a society, and use any ‘citizen’ in the way as cannon fodder.

    Even if we can’t keep up with all the covert operations of shadow state governance within the Homeland, we the people are just as surely enemies of the state as the untermenschen in the colonies. This should be abundantly clear by now in the new abnormal. Of course, the psychopathy of power has gone to unprecedented lengths to deny the obvious, like using us as lab rats for eugenics.

    We are by birthright citizens of the earth, and the common masses who have labored in some form of slavery to masters and gods since the origin of class-based civilization and cover myths for its system of dispossession and abuse as divine or natural order. It’s ancient tradition to set up this organized crime in terms of divide et impera population control.

    We should not let ourselves be defined, distorted, or deflected by all the demographic data, all the manufactured identities of marketing, all the classifications of psychological and social engineering to which modern ‘rule of law’ resorts to prevent our perception of the common cause we have for uniting across their divides, and making our own history far more freely and fully than these parasites presume to permit us.

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