SS Pieter Schelte
January 25, 2015 5:33 PM   Subscribe

The "world's largest ship" is named after a Nazi war criminal. Unsurprisingly a few people have a problem with that.
posted by Artw (77 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
I didn't understand this bit: The London-based Lloyd’s Register dug in to defend its role in the ship’s building and development [...]

I understood that Lloyd's Register (Group Limited) does ship certification and classification. Why are they being asked to defend their role? Was it a more extensive one in this case?
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:46 PM on January 25, 2015


I actually think more oil & gas megaships should be named after war criminals.
posted by mrjohnmuller at 5:50 PM on January 25, 2015 [54 favorites]


Wait, this article is a bit confusing. Was he found to be a Nazi war criminal or was he released because he was a member of the Resistance and thus not a war criminal?
posted by I-baLL at 6:04 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


According to Wikipedia (which refers to a USA Today article from 2008): "After the war he was arrested and sentenced to jail for three years, though the court released him after one and a half years on account of his "very important services to the resistance between August 1943 and March 1944."
posted by effbot at 6:17 PM on January 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


This is a mess of a thing.
posted by Going To Maine at 6:19 PM on January 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Was he found to be a Nazi war criminal

*All* members of the SS who joined voluntarily and were members after the start of the war were declared war criminals. In this case, he was arrested and jailed for a term of three years, which was reduced to 18 months because he did join and help the Dutch Resistance.

But, yes, convicted and jailed for being a member of the Waffen-SS.

You were not automatically a war criminal if you were forced to join the Waffen-SS, and if you joined the SS and then left before the start of the war, you wouldn't have been a war criminal because there wasn't a war when you were in the SS. Neither exception applies here.
posted by eriko at 6:21 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


So, a reformed Nazi, then.
posted by Curious Artificer at 6:30 PM on January 25, 2015


Reformed in 1943 is early enough to count for something.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 6:32 PM on January 25, 2015 [12 favorites]


■ Before the Pieter Schelte was built, the Netherlands Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies was compiling information on its namesake. Its main researcher, David Barnouw, said Schelte was “a member of a small fascist party before the war, but was in Venezuela when the Germans invaded. Schelte saw it as a reason to return”.

■ Having joined the SS, “Schelte fought on the Russian front for the Wehrmacht, but was recalled to be part of the ‘East Company’, working for the SS in the occupied East. The job was to provide labour, and Schelte promised 2,000 Dutch volunteers. But they were not forthcoming, so he commandeered 4,000 for forced labour”.

■ As the war began to “go badly for Germany, he joined a resistance party, then went to Switzerland. He was interned after the war, tried and I think the judges found him one of their own – a good businessman, well educated”.


So less a misunderstood antihero and more a nazi war criminal with a streak of pragmatism, who nonetheless is most likely responsible for 4000 people getting worked to death.
posted by Artw at 6:35 PM on January 25, 2015 [11 favorites]


But perhaps doesn't count enough to have a ship named after you?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:37 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


The EU is full of ex-NAZIs and former NAZI youths.

The USA and USSR took NAZI rocket scientists to use in their space programs to build rockets.

This is a hidden truth, we still use stuff that Nazis invented, stuff we stole from Germany after World War 2. Some of the Nazis defected and some gave up info as a double agent. It is really hard to tell who is a war criminal and who is not.
posted by Orion Blastar at 6:38 PM on January 25, 2015


I think conscripting 4000 people into forced labour is pretty firmly on the side of 'war criminal,' no?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:42 PM on January 25, 2015 [11 favorites]


You don't understand--a rich person wants this to happen, therefore it must.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:45 PM on January 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


It is interesting to note that in this article from November, no mention is made of the significance of the name or any controversy attached to it. It does mention a larger sister ship under construction. I wonder what the new ship will be named; perhaps the Kurt Waldheim?
posted by TedW at 6:48 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Now if the guy were alive and living on the boat that absolutely would be Ian Fleming villain territory.
posted by Artw at 7:01 PM on January 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


> Reformed in 1943 is early enough to count for something.

I agree that it does count for something (though I wish I knew who they were quoting when they say "As the war began to 'go badly for Germany, he joined a resistance party, then went to Switzerland. He was interned after the war,..'") . I also think that this:
Among Schelte’s remarks was his verdict that “the German race is model. The Jewish race, by comparison, is parasitic … Therefore the Jewish question must be resolved in every Aryan country”.
should also count for something. I like to think of us as giving the Jewish answer to his Jewish question.
posted by benito.strauss at 7:03 PM on January 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


It would be interesting to see how many things are still named after Nazis, or indeed after war criminals in general. Various buildings in the US for example are named after Wernher von Braun. More important maybe is to uncover the histories that led to these decisions in the first place.
posted by carter at 7:07 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Surely it would be just easier for the company to rename the ship?

On review, what Horace Rumpole said.
posted by arcticseal at 7:24 PM on January 25, 2015


We might have a few buildings named after Wernher von Braun in America, but it's not like we go around naming cars after the author of The International Jew: The World's Foremost Problem.
posted by uosuaq at 7:42 PM on January 25, 2015 [20 favorites]


We have our own naming issues here in the US, which I think about every time I drive down Jefferson Davis highway.
posted by sallybrown at 7:48 PM on January 25, 2015 [17 favorites]


My sisters both went to Robert E. Lee High School and we live in Lee District so ... yeah. There are big problems.
posted by kafziel at 7:51 PM on January 25, 2015 [13 favorites]


The reason the ship was named after Pieter Schelte Heerema was because his son David Heerema owns the corporation that built the ship. (Or paid someone else to build it.) David Heerema isn't trying to make any kind of political statement other than "I loved my father when he was alive."

Reading the whole article, I finally concluded there's a lot less to this case of outrage than the headline seems to imply.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:59 PM on January 25, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm not sure people who had ancestors killed by Nazis have much reason to care how or why the ship got the name of a Nazi war criminal, but if you think they should, please do make that case.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:08 PM on January 25, 2015 [4 favorites]




The reason the ship was named after Pieter Schelte Heerema was because his son David Heerema owns the corporation that built the ship. (Or paid someone else to build it.) David Heerema isn't trying to make any kind of political statement other than "I loved my father when he was alive."

Reading the whole article, I finally concluded there's a lot less to this case of outrage than the headline seems to imply.
Really? Because I loved my father when he was alive, too, and yet if he had been a volunteer member of the Waffen SS who had "volunteered" 4000 other people for conscript (read: slave) labor (he was not) I would find other ways of remembering him than to very publicly call attention to his history.

I mean.. the guy should not be prevented from naming his ship whatever he wants to, but I think it's entirely appropriate for people to condemn his choice, and for there to be non-criminal consequences for his decision: other businesses should be encouraged to to refuse to do business with him and ports that are in countries that were occupied by the Nazis to refuse the ship service.
posted by Nerd of the North at 8:15 PM on January 25, 2015 [21 favorites]


I'm not sure people who had ancestors killed by Nazis have much reason to care how or why the ship got the name of a Nazi war criminal, but if you think they should, please do make that case.

This is sarcasm, right?
posted by Behemoth at 8:23 PM on January 25, 2015


"former NAZI youths. "

Like the Pope Emeritus. (Benedict XVI)

I don't know, man, complicated issue.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:23 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


This is sarcasm, right?

Did you misread me? My point was that how it got named after him isn't important, it's the fact that it got named after him, which is complete bullshit, and should be criticized no matter how it came about.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:26 PM on January 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


I think the people of the USA are generally starting to recognise that the Confederate States of America really was all about slavery; and I hope that they will come to realise that none of its leaders should continue to be celebrated. That being said, it's a good deal harder to change the name of a long-established highway than it is to change the name of a newly-constructed ship.
posted by Joe in Australia at 8:27 PM on January 25, 2015 [4 favorites]


This is a hidden truth, we still use stuff that Nazis invented, stuff we stole from Germany after World War 2.

Not sure what your standards for what counts as a "hidden truth" is, given that Operation Paperclip has been known about for decades, and Tom Lehrer released "Wernher von Braun" about half a century ago.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:35 PM on January 25, 2015 [6 favorites]


The world is full of uncertainties, shades of grey, and cases where it can be hard to tell the good guys from the bad; the malignant from the opportunistic from those simply trying to survive.

But you know who I don't usually get hung up on? Nazis.
posted by bicyclefish at 8:48 PM on January 25, 2015 [9 favorites]


Well, I'm not going anywhere near that huge ship then!

Which saves me from having to buy the book.
posted by CynicalKnight at 8:55 PM on January 25, 2015


We have our own naming issues here in the US…

We sure do.
posted by TedW at 8:57 PM on January 25, 2015 [2 favorites]


Did you know when the first congress of the US met a vote was taken as to the official language of the new nation, German lost by one vote.

With regard to the naming of this ship, Bob Dylan said it best, "While money doesn't talk, it swears."

So, they are running Condoleeza Rice in 2016 ?
posted by Oyéah at 9:04 PM on January 25, 2015


Tom Lehrer released "Wernher von Braun" yt about half a century ago.

You know that rule about NEVER read the comments on YouTube?

Trust me, it's still in force.

0 to Godwin in the first post.
posted by eriko at 9:21 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


> David Heerema isn't trying to make any kind of political statement other than "I loved my father when he was alive." Reading the whole article, I finally concluded there's a lot less to this case of outrage than the headline seems to imply.

I know, right? Nazi-Schmazi what's the big deal?
posted by benito.strauss at 9:55 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


"Did you know when the first congress of the US met a vote was taken as to the official language of the new nation, German lost by one vote."

Huh.

"The Distinctions between Virginians, Pensylvanians, New Yorkers and New Englanders, are no more.

I am not a Virginian, but an American.

Slaves are to be thrown out of the Question, and if the freemen can be represented according to their Numbers I am satisfyed."

-John Adams, NOTES OF DEBATES IN THE CONTINENTAL CONGRESS, 6 SEPTEMBER 1774.
posted by clavdivs at 10:19 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


Speaking as someone whose grandparents were compulsory members of the Deutches Jungvolk (the Cub Scouts analogue to the Hitlerjugend) on pain of parental arrest, whose great-grandfather ignored direct threats from Party officials to himself and his family to avoid participating in Kristallnacht, and whose grandfather almost got caught by the last wave of SS conscription gangs that snagged the exact-same-age future Pope: this is a gentle reminder that former members of the Nazi Party ran a very, very wide spectrum of knowledge of what was occurring and personal willingness to participate in it.

It sounds like Peter Schelte was personally responsible for some pretty horrific atrocities, but the majority of German people were victims of the first historical modern propaganda machine - their feelings of guilt and anger at what was done in their name are intense and nearly universal, even while their personal culpability was all over the map.

Just, please be careful when making blanket generalizations, is all I'm saying.
posted by Ryvar at 10:29 PM on January 25, 2015 [5 favorites]


I'm pretty sure we're not going to worry too much about hurting the feelings of any former members of the Nazi Party.
posted by Justinian at 10:42 PM on January 25, 2015 [1 favorite]


"but the majority of German people were victims of the first historical modern propaganda machine"

Goebbels invented the lie?
posted by clavdivs at 11:21 PM on January 25, 2015


Yes, clavdivs, clearly that was what I meant, and you should be roundly applauded for your cunning and not-at-all-disingenuous skewering of what is most definitely not a straw man.

Don't be fatuous, Jeffrey.
posted by Ryvar at 11:27 PM on January 25, 2015


I don't know who Jeffery is.

"first historical modern propaganda machine"

Was it? If you mean multi-media, well no again. Defending/explaining nazi atrocities even from a psychological prospective is a bit shaky ground/ potential flare up type discussions which I will avoid.

My junior high had a former hitlerjugend as did my high school. The later being a flak gunner.
I do not regret the the detention for yelling "did you shoot my uncle down"

Watch "Hitlers Children" if you can make it through without some form of lethargic yawp.
posted by clavdivs at 1:18 AM on January 26, 2015


I'm pretty sure we're not going to worry too much about hurting the feelings of any former members of the Nazi Party.

and

Watch "Hitlers Children" if you can make it through without some form of lethargic yawp.

*sigh*, okay, apparently we need to talk about this.

The vast majority of surviving members of the Nazi Party - many of whom are on the Internet, and some of whom will probably read this thread - were German children forced into the Deutches Jungvolk or, (mostly dead due to age and 11th hour conscription) the Hitlerjugend.

Failure to join the DJV (boys) or JM (girls) meant, at best, that your parents would be arrested and imprisoned until you gave in. More likely they would be disappeared and never heard from again, or tortured in front of you in a basement cell until you gave in or they died (or both), or simply dragged out of their homes screaming and shot on the spot if they continued to resist.

Put simply: if you are a German born in the 1930s then whatever your beliefs you were nominally part of the Nazi Party, without exception. To be born in Germany in that time, for everyone, was to be a member. Your conflation of mandatory association with the idea that I'm somehow suggesting we not hurt the feelings of adults who actively volunteered for the SS out of genocidal hatred is either completely disingenuous or, hopefully, rooted in a deep ignorance of the historical reality of modern survivors.

..or maybe you're right and these children were monsters guilty of being forced into a mixture of modern Boy Scouts and North Korean indoctrination, fed propaganda by teachers and adults that they should have been able to trust.

And these children were vile collaborators guilty of such atrocious activities as gathering metal for recycling while Allied bombs fell around them and turned friends and neighbors into smoking pits of rubble and strewn body parts.

And these children were guilty of standing helplessly and watching as brown shirts with assault rifles dragged their Jewish childhood friends and neighbors screaming out of their homes in broad daylight to be stacked in trucks like cordwood or simply shot on the spot for resisting.

And these children were absolutely guilty of not actively resisting (and thereby volunteering themselves and their parents for similar treatment), and instead chose to just cry themselves to sleep for weeks afterward - and again 50 years later when telling their grandchildren - over what happened to their friends and the crushing guilt from their utter powerlessness to stop any of it.

And these children were completely guilty of failure to penetrate a veil of constant lies and misinforation and every last one MUST therefore be a Totenkopf-style rabid genocidal fanatic forever beyond redemption and desperately in need of whatever insults we can muster.

And these children never suffered soul-destroying guilt while fighting tooth and nail with their siblings for rotting scraps of food from trash cans after the Russians rolled in, cut off all food supplies to the entire civilian populace and began systematically raping over four million of their mothers and sisters.

And these children deserved the next forty years of random disappearances and torture under the Stasi.

And these children deserved a life lived in constant, crippling shame for being ignorant of the actions of others.

And these children now cresting 80 years old desperately need your further scorn and ostracism.

...we've been chatting in a lot of the same threads on this board for ten fucking years, both of you. I desperately want to believe you know that no, for fuck's sake I am obviously not attempting to defend genocidal maniacs and concentration camp commanders but instead pointing out that basic Party membership these days means you were guilty of being born in Germany in a particular decade and somehow surviving a trip through Hell and back. I desperately want to believe you're better than to accuse me of that, and that you have the intelligence to approach something this important and complex with even a sliver of nuance.
posted by Ryvar at 1:32 AM on January 26, 2015 [11 favorites]


One more thing. The real elephant in the room historically is something like this
-the nazis did not invent genocide.
They did not, though the term has some bearing.
The nazis profected genocide with propaganda, laws, and technology.
Is it interesting that the first cruise missle, guided by a television camera, came from German science and has been profected by the U.S. military?
History of technology?

The post was about a Dutch cargo lord and his love for big boats and fathers sudden realization of wind blowing.
posted by clavdivs at 1:32 AM on January 26, 2015


Timing!
I respectfully disagree Ryvar, call it the Dutch in me.
posted by clavdivs at 1:37 AM on January 26, 2015


Goebbels invented the lie?

No, but arguably, he was one of the first to industrialize it.
posted by eriko at 6:15 AM on January 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Mod note: The "not-all-Nazis" thing is sort of a weird derail in this discussion, folks, and likewise, while of course the US has its own awful naming embarrassments, that's a better point of conversation for another thread rather than diverting the discussion here. Thanks.
posted by taz (staff) at 6:35 AM on January 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


This sounds like a colossal blunder, but it sounds like they've been fighting the company that built the ship for 10 years about the name. I happen to be reading a book on container ships and shipping right now, and seafarers are incredibly superstitious, and one of their major ones is you never rename a ship. I have no doubt the son of this former SS criminal is claiming he can't rename the ship for "bad luck" reasons, but like other superstitions, it's ridiculous and something they should have done ten years ago when it was first brought up as problematic.
posted by mathowie at 7:13 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


I mean.. the guy should not be prevented from naming his ship whatever he wants to, but I think it's entirely appropriate for people to condemn his choice, and for there to be non-criminal consequences for his decision: other businesses should be encouraged to to refuse to do business with him and ports that are in countries that were occupied by the Nazis to refuse the ship service.

Oh, for fuck's sake.

I came in here expecting to be outraged as well for their poor choice, but the guy is naming a ship after a father he loved, which is an entirely normal shipbuilding historical trend, people naming ships after members of their family - children and spouses usually, but parents also not unusual. Was the father a Nazi? Who the fuck cares? It's obviously not a political choice and should not be condemned as such. The father was not a "war criminal" because he actively participated in giant crimes, he was a war criminal because every officer got condemned as a war criminal after the war. That's a horse of an entirely different color.
posted by corb at 7:19 AM on January 26, 2015


Was the father a Nazi? Who the fuck cares?

idk, probably a lot of people.
posted by poffin boffin at 7:37 AM on January 26, 2015 [10 favorites]


I mean, that's literally #notallnazis. Come on.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:40 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


like maybe some jews for example.
posted by poffin boffin at 7:40 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


The father was not a "war criminal" because he actively participated in giant crimes, he was a war criminal because every officer got condemned as a war criminal after the war.

Also maybe he was a war criminal because of the 4000 people he forced into slave labor, idk.
posted by Behemoth at 7:44 AM on January 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


I mean, that's literally #notallnazis. Come on.

My point is that he had no reason to think there would be a large outpouring of protest. It's not like his father was Ilse Koch or Josef Kramer or Friedrich Jeckeln. I'm not saying his father was good, it just seems he was run-of-the mill.
posted by corb at 7:44 AM on January 26, 2015


run of the mill = 4000 people worked to death

you're hard to impress, i guess future genocidal fuckheads will have to wake up pretty early in the morning to rise above the dross.
posted by poffin boffin at 7:47 AM on January 26, 2015 [10 favorites]


Run of the mill SS war criminal.
posted by Artw at 7:49 AM on January 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


like just one of those average nazis not even one of the impressive ones with the high kill counts, really his son should be embarrased that his dad wasn't a more notable nazi
posted by poffin boffin at 7:53 AM on January 26, 2015 [6 favorites]


My point is that he had no reason to think there would be a large outpouring of protest.

People have objected to the name for a decade. The shipping company should change the name already.
posted by mathowie at 8:08 AM on January 26, 2015 [5 favorites]


If it was his personal yacht it'd be understandable (although still not in good taste) that he named it after his dad even if his dad was a Nazi. The fact that it belongs to a corporation (one operating internationally, no less) makes it both mind-boggling and inexcusable.

The company's other ships are named Audacia, Lorelay, Solitaire, Calamity Jane, Manta, and Tog Mor. So it's not like they've got a long tradition of naming boats after dads or anything.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:19 AM on January 26, 2015 [3 favorites]


*shrug* It's a problem that's easily fixed. I mean, that's why they invented torpedoes, after all
posted by happyroach at 8:38 AM on January 26, 2015


People have objected to the name for a decade. The shipping company should change the name already.

There are these things: Bullheadedness and Spite. On occasion they are virtues, but mostly they give us the Washington Redskins.
posted by pan at 9:11 AM on January 26, 2015 [4 favorites]


If it was his personal yacht it'd be understandable (although still not in good taste) that he named it after his dad even if his dad was a Nazi. The fact that it belongs to a corporation (one operating internationally, no less) makes it both mind-boggling and inexcusable.

Hmm. I can see that, Eyebrows - per the article, I got the impression that Heerema owned the company outright and treated it like a private playground, but looking around on the internets, it looks like Allseas got bought by Gaylin, which is publicly traded? Am I reading that right? If so, wouldn't the appropriate angle be to buy a share of stock and then sue him for malfeasance and negatively impacting stock value?
posted by corb at 9:12 AM on January 26, 2015


Oh, for fuck's sake.

I came in here expecting to be outraged as well for their poor choice, but the guy is naming a ship after a father he loved, which is an entirely normal shipbuilding historical trend, people naming ships after members of their family - children and spouses usually, but parents also not unusual. Was the father a Nazi? Who the fuck cares?
Whether or not you agree with their feelings, or even agree that they have a right to have feelings about this, it should be evident that quite a lot of people care about this.
It's obviously not a political choice and should not be condemned as such.
I have no idea how you conclude that that's "obvious" other than by accepting the motivation offered by the owner as honest, complete, and definitive and by dismissing the possibility of any other factors, as well as by ignoring the many more appropriate ways in which he could have memorialized his father.
The father was not a "war criminal" because he actively participated in giant crimes, he was a war criminal because every officer got condemned as a war criminal after the war. That's a horse of an entirely different color.
You're the one who's saying he's being condemned because he was a "war criminal" and then further asserting that as far as we know he's one only on a technicality.

In the post to which you were replying I don't mention the term "war criminal" at all -- instead I mention the incident highlighted by the article linked in the write-up. Let's refresh your memory:
Having joined the SS, “Schelte fought on the Russian front for the Wehrmacht, but was recalled to be part of the ‘East Company’, working for the SS in the occupied East. The job was to provide labour, and Schelte promised 2,000 Dutch volunteers. But they were not forthcoming, so he commandeered 4,000 for forced labour”.
To be blunt, your insistence on overlooking this point calls into question for me the sincerity of your often-expressed political views. What could be more repugnant to someone who actually believed in the stated tenets of libertarianism than literally seizing 4,000 of your countrymen and compelling them to labor for you?
posted by Nerd of the North at 9:32 AM on January 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


Frugal Mariner boat renaming ceremony.

There is an ignorant sub-set of the seafaring population who believe it is very bad luck to re-name a ship or a boat or a vessel.
posted by bukvich at 9:39 AM on January 26, 2015


corb> If so, wouldn't the appropriate angle be to buy a share of stock and then sue him for malfeasance and negatively impacting stock value?

How is he negatively impacting stock value if nobody should care if he names the ship after his father? Isn't he just the victim of a bunch of meddlers who decided to pick on him with no basis? I don't see how he could be held responsible for not foreseeing that.
posted by benito.strauss at 9:53 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


eriko: 0 to Godwin in the first post.
It is not possible to Godwin an article about an actual Nazi.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:54 AM on January 26, 2015 [7 favorites]


It is not possible to Godwin an article about an actual Nazi.

You know who else it's impossible to Godwin?
posted by valkane at 10:43 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Audacia, Lorelay, Solitaire, Calamity Jane, Manta, and Tog Mor

OT: Someday, I want to be in an RPG session where those are the party members.
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:50 AM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Was the father a Nazi? Who the fuck cares?

I dunno, maybe many of our Jewish members, for a start? There was a long MeTa very recently about casual anti-Semitism.

Saying "who the fuck cares?" about a Nazi being memorialized is exactly the kind of behaviour many Jewish people in that thread were talking about. It's minimizing complicity in genocide, for crying out loud.

The father was not a "war criminal" because he actively participated in giant crimes, he was a war criminal because every officer got condemned as a war criminal after the war. That's a horse of an entirely different color.

Also because of, as others have said, using 4000 people as slave labour.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 12:41 PM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm gay and the pink triangle means a lot to me so while I get your point it didn't really seem necessary to get bogged down in details--offering a concrete example of recent discussion seemed more effective.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 2:52 PM on January 26, 2015


Eyebrows McGee: "The company's other ships are named Audacia, Lorelay, Solitaire, Calamity Jane, Manta, and Tog Mor. So it's not like they've got a long tradition of naming boats after dads or anything."

Well generally people have only one, maybe two dads. It's not a naming scheme that lends itself to trends.
posted by Mitheral at 3:06 PM on January 26, 2015 [1 favorite]


Mass killing is never acceptable, and those who enable it should never be honored.
posted by b1tr0t

Well said. In contrast The Suslov was renamed.
posted by clavdivs at 8:11 PM on January 26, 2015


corb: "it just seems he was run-of-the mill."
He was Dutch, for fucks sake. He received a telegram from fucking Himmler congratulating him on his wedding. He was the leader of an organization in charge of colonizing Eastern Europe. He wasn't just a random guy with a Sturmgewehr.

Try asking a random sample of non-German Europeans what they think of their compatriots who joined the SS during WW2.

Hint: "traitor" is one of the nicer words that will come up a lot.
posted by brokkr at 2:49 AM on January 27, 2015 [6 favorites]


mathowie: "People have objected to the name for a decade."
Interestingly, Allseas got an €800,000 tax break from the Dutch government for building the ship, which in 2008 prompted the Dutch Socialist Party to raise awkward questions in parliament about the appropriateness of public money going to support ships named after Nazis.
posted by brokkr at 3:00 AM on January 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


b1tr0t: American intelligence agents are just as willing to torture their prisoners to death as Nazis were. Soviet Communists were just as eager to starve Ukrainian farmers to death as Nazis were to gas Jews. (un-)Islamic State forces are far more eager to execute civilians than Nazi soldiers ever were.
Don't play this comparison game.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:30 AM on January 27, 2015 [1 favorite]


I shouldn't be *surprised* that professional contrarians will go to bat defending something named for an honest-to-god Nazi when the alternative means that someone, somewhere might be told what to do, but damn if it doesn't get me every time.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 9:35 AM on January 28, 2015 [5 favorites]




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