Why is it said that,“Hitler was the Devil of the western media; Stalin was their angel"?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is a very interesting and unique way of phrasing the relationship that the Western media had with Hitler and Stalin.  I think that one reason why this statement might be true is because it was easier to demonize Hitler.  As the West understood Hitler as a threat, he presented himself as a figure that was more decidedly anti- Western than Stalin was.  Hitler legitimately believed that German supremacy could defeat "the West" in a demonstrative and clear manner.  Stalin was a bit more secretive in his anti- Western tendencies.  Stalin was more concerned with power and did not hesitate to side with anyone in order to obtain it.  As Hitler became more demonstrative about his beliefs in racial purity and theories of racial supremacy, it became much easier to demonize him in the press, and with good reason to do so.  Yet, Stalin was more savvy in keeping his agenda and his own atrocities concealed.  Whereas Hitler did not shy away from what he wanted to do with those he considered "undesirable," Stalin recognized the need to hide the same desires.  A fair argument could be made that Stalin's atrocities, on a pure body count level, were as bad, if not worse, than Hitler's.  Yet when Hitler allied himself in such a clear and demonstrative manner against the West, he became the easiest target.  For his part, Stalin was quite happy aligning with Hitler, so long as no harm came to his nation.   When Hitler made his fatal mistake of going after Russia, Stalin was able to forge an alliance with the West, making him an immediate "darling" because victory seemed much more possible with Stalin than without him.  It is here where one can see how Hitler was easily demonized by the Western media, while Stalin was praised, or at least made to endure less scrutiny in the West.

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