Adolf Hitler

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If Hitler killed so many people, why is he called a genius?

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What bothers me here is the word “if.”  Never doubt that Hitler was responsible for the deaths of millions upon millions of innocent people. Whether he dirtied his hands with the actual exterminations, there is no doubt that others did this for him. That is a sign of his genius. The intelligence he used to manipulate the people serving under him and all of his devoted followers proves his genius. Sadly, rather than use this genius for the betterment of humankind, he used it for his own personal gain and gratification.

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As stated above someone can be considered a genius and still be a very bad person. It would be hard for me to acknowledge someone who brought about as many evils as Hitler did to a stature of genius simply because of those evils. i guess technically we would need to know whatr his IQ was to decide whether or not he was truly a genius.

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I would have to deny Hitler the privilege of being considered a genius.  He might have started out to redeem Germany with the best of intentions, but it quickly turned into Europe's worst nightmare! 

Any qualities he did have don't do much to counteract the repugnance one feels at the crimes he committed against humanity! 

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If there is a "genius" to Hitler, it would be how he was able to convince so many of ideas which were so repugnant.  On face value, if one were to say that they possessed a plan to eliminate millions of people in the most horrific of manners, few would embrace such a suggestion.  Hitler was able to convince millions of people as to this very idea without any opposition or articulated rage against such a solution.  Outside of this philosophical explanation, he possessed a political guile, as well.  His genius resided in his ability to subvert the weakness of the political system in Weimar Germany.  Recognizing the weaknesses of the state at the time, Hitler and his party rose from the fringes of the social and political orders and consolidated power.  Being looked at as an "outsider" or someone who was a "loon," Hitler banked on public apathy towards mainstream politics and gathered more people who genuinely believed his ideas.  Once this became a significant number, the fragmented condition of Weimar politics allowed him to assume power and then destroy the democratic mechanism which allowed him to gain it.  This represented an act of political genius and folly on those who allowed it to happen.  Finally, Hitler understood that the horrors of the First World War and the fearful pall it cast upon the "civilized" leaders of Europe would allow him to take advantage of the policy of appeasement.  Leaders like Britain's Chamberlain who were so horrified by the reality of the First World War that their attempts with Hitler actually brought on the Second were manipulated by the Nazis.   These are not examples of a good type of genius, but the realistic presence of an "evil one."  This is best seen in Yeats' poem, "The Second Coming," when something is in the distance that has found a way to take everyone's hopes, dreams, and fears, converge them into one vision, "slouching towards Bethlehem, waiting to be born."

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It's difficult for me to ascribe the term genius to Hitler, not just because of his horrible crimes against humanity and the world, but because I just don't think it truly applies to him.

He was very effective at using mob psychology to unite and motivate large numbers of people around an ideology of hate and aggression.  He was smart, from a military standpoint to realize the utility of the tank and the winning strategy of the Blitzkrieg, and he very adroitly played off rivals in his own government against each other allowing him to maintain unquestioned power.

None of these things make him a genius, however.

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As the saying goes there is a "fine line between genius and insanity." this is certainly the case with Hitler. Though it is hard to look past the evil regime he presided over, the way he rose to power and the control he had over millions of people could be considered the work of a genius, though unfortunately Hitler channeled his energies for an evil cause.

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It depends on who you listen to. Some called him a genius because he had early military successes. Some called him a genius because he gave speeches that tapped deep into the hearts and minds of a demoralized Geman populace. Some called him a genius because they had a self-serving desire to elevate his stature.

In the larger perspective, however, it doesn't matter what label you give someone; it is far better to judge an individual by his or her moral character and deeds accomplished. Hitler lead his country to horror and ruin, brought about the destruction of broad swaths of Europe and was responsible for the deaths of millions of people.

It's sad that true geniuses, who bring so much good to the world, are associated, because of mis-labeling, with such true, real-life hate-mongers and villains like Adolf Hitler.

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The word "genius" does not mean that someone is a good person.  Instead, it just means that a person was particularly great at some particular kind of endeavor.  I think that Hitler would qualify as a particularly evil political genius.

You can say Hitler was a genius because he was so good at manipulating people.  He was able to get people to go along with his ideas even when they seemed to be completely crazy.  Because he was able to do this, you would have to say he was a genius.  Sadly, he used his great talents for one of the most evil goals ever.

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