Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said that Nazism was a left-wing movement after he visited the Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem, but the museum says that Nazism was a right-wing movement. What about now?

There was a big controversy about Nazism and socialism in the recent visit of the Brazilian president to Israel, and I will let Israelis themselves speak what they think. In a report titled “Brazil’s president says Nazis were leftists following visit to Yad Vashem,” the Jerusalem Post, a prominent Israeli newspaper, said,

President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil said that Nazism was a leftist movement following his visit to the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem.

The far-right leader was asked on Tuesday during his visit to Israel if he agreed with the claim by his foreign minister, Ernesto Araujo, that Nazis were leftists.

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“There is no doubt, right?” Bolsonaro replied, according to Reuters.

It is widely accepted that Nazism was a far-right movement. Yad Vashem’s website says that a range of factors, including Germany’s defeat in World War I, “created fertile soil for the growth of radical right-wing groups in Germany, spawning entities such as the Nazi Party.”

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency confirmed that Bolsonaro’s visit to the Holocaust Museum was clouded by a controversial remark of his “foreign minister, Ernesto Araújo, who claimed in a blog post that Nazism was a left-wing movement. Yad Vashem’s website says Nazism was a product of ‘radical right-wing groups in Germany.’”

Yad Vashem documents the Holocaust and is a memorial to the 6 million Jews murdered by Nazi Germany during World War Two.

Despite Araújo’s remark directly contradicting information on the museum’s website, Bolsonaro sided with him.

Yet, the Holocaust Museum is not the only Jewish institution portraying Hitler as a right-winger. The Jewish Virtual Library says:

… Hitler would make one of his passionate speeches that encouraged his supporters to carry out acts of violence against Jews and his left-wing political opponents. As this violence was often directed against Socialists and Communists, the local right-wing Bavarian government did not take action against the Nazi Party.

Hitler believed that the Jews were involved with Communists in a joint conspiracy to take over the world. Like Henry Ford, Hitler claimed that 75% of all Communists were Jews. Hitler argued that the combination of Jews and Marxists had already been successful in Russia and now threatened the rest of Europe.

If the Jews, who understand about Nazism as its direct victims, say that Nazism was right-wing, who are we to contradict them? Yet, asked by reporters if he agreed with Araújo, Bolsonaro said, “There is no doubt, right?”

He explained that the Nazi party’s name was the National Socialist Party of Germany, which includes the word “socialist.” The official name was the National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

Araújo’s notion, which is embraced by Bolsonaro, is that “National Socialism” was a leftist movement because it includes the word “socialism.” Political Scientist Kai Michael Kenkel said this connection between Nazis and socialism is akin to saying that the East German Democratic Republic and the People’s Democratic Republic of Korea were indeed democracies.

The same controversy was present in Bolsonaro’s campaign in 2018, when his followers said that Nazism was a left-wing ideology. The German Embassy in Brazil intervened in the controversy. In an interview with the newspaper “O Globo,” the German ambassador to Brazil, Georg Witschel, said it was “complete nonsense” to say that Nazism was a leftist political movement. The diplomat said there was consensus among German and world historians that Hitler was leading a right-wing political movement.

The German Embassy in Brazil posted a video explaining the culture of remembrance over the Holocaust in Germany. The video said that Germans “don’t hide from their past,” adding that “from a young age they’re taught to confront the horrors of the Holocaust.” The post garnered some 776,000 views on the embassy’s Facebook page, not to mention a number of contentious comments.

According to Deutsche Welle, the official broadcaster of the German government, the video was met with unexpected hostility from many Brazilians. Some insisted that Adolf Hitler espoused a left-wing ideology, others sought to deny the Holocaust.

Many of these Brazilians were enraged by the assertion that the Nazi party was a right-wing movement, pointing to its official name, the National Socialist German Workers’ Party, as evidence that it was leftist instead.

Other commenters questioned the validity of the Holocaust, where 6 million Jews lost their lives. Brazilian Holocaust deniers took to the post to label the Holocaust a “holofraud,” which prompted the German embassy to respond.

“The Holocaust is a historical fact, with proof and testimony that can be found in many parts of Europe,” the embassy wrote in response to one post.

Deutsche Welle added that “Another argument plays on the statist economic policies of the Nazi regime, but this was also a practice of standard right-wing regimes, such as Spain under Franco and Brazil’s own military dictatorship from 1964 to 1985.”

There is a big controversy when the Brazilian president and his foreign minister said that Nazism was left-wing, but Yad Vashem, the Jewish Virtual Library and the German Embassy in Brazil said that Nazism was right-wing. How to make sense from this controversy?

I like the perspective of Rev. Erwin W. Lutzer, who in his book “Hitler’s Cross: How the Cross of Christ was used to promote the Nazi agenda” (Moody Publishers, 1995), said that Nazism was an occult movement that used anti-Marxist propaganda.

In this sense, everything makes sense. For example, Ernesto Araújo has written a diplomatic essay praising “traditionalism” (conservatism). He said, “To try to understand Trump, you should read the traditionalist master René Guénon, a major influence on Steve Bannon, former chief strategist of the White House and still central in the movement that brought Trump to the presidency.”

For Araújo, all the conservative aspects of the Trump administration were a direct influence of Bannon, who was influenced by the Islamic occultist Guénon. For him, to praise the Trump administration is to praise Bannon and Guénon. Obviously, he is wrong, because the conservative aspects of the Trump administration are evangelical, not Guenonian.

So Araújo tried to credit to Guenonian Bannon the conservatism of the Trump administration.

The most prominent disciple of Guénon was Julius Evola, who advised Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini and Nazism.

Guénon and Evola are prominent references in Araújo’s diplomatic essay against Marxism and defending “traditionalism.”

So, if Nazism was left-wing, as advocated by Araújo, why did it have a prominent anti-Marxist occultist as its adviser?

Occultists provoke confusions and chaos wherever they are.

Araújo is an adherent of self-styled philosopher Olavo de Carvalho, a prominent adherent of Guénon. Even Bolsonaro has propagandized Carvalho as the greatest Brazilian right-winger, even though Carvalho has said that he is not left-winger or right-winger.

You could label Carvalho a left-winger, because many of his methods are clearly left-wing. He reviles his critics in an approach that he himself admits was firstly used by Lenin. He also accuses others of what he does. He lies as a genuine communist. To say that the Inquisition was a myth created by Jews and Protestants and that smoking does not harm are two of his many lies.

Another controversial side of Carvalho is that he is known for his anti-Protestant diatribes, but he chose self-exile as a Brazilian immigrant in the largest Protestant nation in the world. Not different from the hypocrisy of Brazilian socialists who slam the U.S. capitalism, but they choose to immigrate to the U.S.

Araújo became an adherent of Guénon and Evola as the direct influence of Carvalho, who for decades has promoted and recommended Guénon, even though after I have exposed Guénon as occultist, Carvalho has feigned to reject him.

Araújo’s traditionalism or anti-Marxism is not based on Christian principles. It is based on Guénon. And Nazism and fascism were advised by Evola, an anti-Marxist occultist who was a disciple of Guénon.

If Nazism was left-wing, it follows that Evola was too, that Guénon was too, and that Carvalho and Araújo are too.

What can Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro get by being advised by Araújo and Carvalho, whose anti-Marxism is not based on Christianity, but on Guénon?

I commend Bolsonaro for his visit to Israel. I have prayed for many years for Brazil to get aligned with Israel. This is the reason why I and millions of Brazilian evangelicals voted for him. Israel and evangelicals have everything to do with one another. This is the reason why Israeli Prime-Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, in his January visit to Brazil, “We have no better friends in the world than the Evangelical community, and the Evangelical community has no better friend in the world than the State of Israel.”

Despite that evangelicals massively voted for Bolsonaro, he has let Carvalho influence him. In his next visit to Israel, will Bolsonaro say that the Inquisition was a “myth” to please his Guenonian adviser?

What does Carvalho have to do with Israel? He is the most prominent advocate of the Inquisition in Brazil. He advocates its revisionism in the same way Holocaust deniers advocate revisionism. Both the Inquisition and the Holocaust tortured and killed Jews.

By accepting Guenonian advisers, Bolsonaro has put himself and Brazil in danger. The Brazilian right-wing trend of advocating the Inquisition has nothing to do with conservative evangelicals who elected Bolsonaro. This is the reason why I have been leading the evangelical effort to expose this trend.

If the Bolsonaro administration ends in disaster, evangelical voters cannot be blamed. But I fear that future historians will blame evangelicals, who love Israel, and forget about Carvalho, who loves the Inquisition.

After all, how many do historians today remember that Nazism and fascism were influenced by anti-Marxist Guenonian Evola? How many will future historians remember that Bolsonaro was influenced by anti-Marxist Guenonian Carvalho?

By seeing the word “socialism” in Nazism, and seeing Brazilian right-wingers labeling Nazism socialism, I believed it too in the past. But when I saw later the same Brazilian right-wingers vigorously defending the Inquisition, I began to ask: What is behind this movement? The answer I found: Occultism.

Occultism and anti-Marxism are a strange combination, but it has been used before — by René Guénon.

Occultism always provokes confusion and chaos. The same occultism that was behind Nazism is today behind Carvalho, Araújo and other Guenonians hijacking the Bolsonaro administration. They love the Inquisition and are opportunists in the Bolsonaro administration. I use the word “opportunist” because it was this term Trump used against Bannon when he fired him.

We evangelicals love Israel and we hate the Inquisition, the Holocaust, occultism and Marxism. We voted for Bolsonaro for him to support Israel and move the Brazilian Embassy to Jerusalem, not for him to make Guenonians great again.

Since Evola with Mussolini, this is the first time Guenonians have a chance to influence a government again.

Evangelicals, who love Israel, need to pray and watch, because anti-Marxist “traditionalist” occultism is preying again on unsuspecting conservatives. Perhaps Bolsonaro is one of its victims, but certainly he has been its main enabler in Brazil.

With information from Jerusalem Post, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Deutsche Welle, Yad Vashem, Reuters, New York Times and Globo.

Portuguese version of this article: Presidente Jair Bolsonaro disse que o nazismo era um movimento de esquerda depois de visitar o Museu do Holocausto em Jerusalém. Mas o museu, que é um memorial às vítimas judaicas do nazismo, diz que o nazismo era um movimento de direita. E agora?

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

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