There's no question that Deadliest Warrior is one of my favorite shows despite its irritating flaws - but I put off watching the Viet Cong v. Waffen SS episode due to the squick factor. I didn't want to admit to myself that despite my difficult-to-goyim-to-ascertain ethnic heritage, I was going to be rooting for the Germans.
Because the Viet Cong were more recent, guerrilla enemies with a deservedly bad reputation? Maybe. I'd prefer to think that if one separates the Waffen-SS from Hitler's genocidal tendencies and puts aside the fact that Waffen SS manned the death camps - the Waffen SS were pretty cool, and had things been otherwise (no Hitler, no genocide), these would have been some good German allies to have in a tough spot. The Viet Cong have an unsavory reputation, probably due to their many cruel, nasty, dirty, terrifying booby traps. Well, Rambo sort of put paid to that whole thing, didn't he?
Well, in Deadliest Warrior's Waffen SS v. Viet Cong episode, the Germans put paid to the Viet Cong. Ha ha ha, I was laughing as the victorious German screamed "Deutschland!" after crisping the remaining Viet Cong opponent with his Flammenwerfer.
So, in my research, I attempted to determine more about the Waffen SS. I knew they were the combat arm of the overall SS organization, which most should know, is the group that made Hitler's whole concentration camp and mass-murder thing work like German clockwork. Under Heinrich Himmler, Hitler's friend of the classic cowardly-looking ratlike chinless Nazi face, the SS had a police arm, a concentration camp arm, and a military fighting arm that eventually grew to nearly 1 million members: the Waffen SS.
I was going to come up with some good Waffen SS pictures - but this one is too good not to pass on. The Flammenwerfer (several generations) was, in English, a "flame thrower." Now - did the U.S. use flamethrowers in WWII? Yes, they did - but the weapon was seldom used in Europe. The M-2 series of American flamethrowers look about as bad or worse as the German Flammenwerfer and are similarly constructed. They were used in the Pacific theater to clean out entrenched Japanese positions on the many islands that the Japanese tenaciously defended.
Which brings me to I guess my final conclusion about this ridiculous show, which offered ridiculous, vicarious thrills seeing the hardcore SS guys making toast out of the wimpy Viet Cong.
If we stuck to inbred hatred toward every enemy, we'd be . . . gosh, I'm not sure even "Martial Races" keep up the total hatred any longer. The Waffen SS itself was not as portrayed in the show. With nearly 1 million men, the Waffen SS contained a number of "freiwilligen" (or volunteer) divisions and a number of non-German members. Notable among these was the feared "Wiking" Division, and if you replace W with V, you will see who they were inspired by and largely comprised of. Today, there is tremendous interest that continues into the SS as a fighting force, and there are even historical reenactors here in the US who have formed SS reenactment groups. Deadliest Warrior portrayed the SS as seen in Combat (1962) - basically, implacable, inhuman killing machine. Some Waffen SS were poor divisions known for cowardice and atrocities. Others were known for extreme courage - and the whole lot of them were completely disenfranchised after the Nuremberg Trials. That's nearly a million guys, and there's no way all of them were death camp killers. An older German friend told me once that it wasn't talked about, but they purposely sent the guys that were mentally deranged or physically unfit (maybe Cpl. Klink "I know nothing! I see nothing!" wasn't that far off) to concentration, labor camp or "Final Solution" duty. It wasn't a matter of the atrocities "destroying" the soldiers who did that duty, it was a matter of Himmler and his cronies understanding that crazy, violent people would be the best to put their murderous plans in action.
Here I am, justifying the Waffen SS. Rationalizations. I have a basic skin color (not race - sorry "people of color" - all "white" people aren't the same - surprised?) affinity with the Waffen SS. I speak some German and have respect for German culture. I think it comes down what the show portrayed. The SS guy applied the flammenwerfer to a fake Viet Cong Village and burnt it all to a crisp. The dead mannequin bodies were blackened and smoking. The Deadliest Warrior guys (their message board aficionados refer to computer programmer Max Geiger simply as "the Nerd"), especially Geoff Desmoulin, who giggles when anything particularly gruesome occurs to the dummies or pig carcasses, were gleeful about the stunning carnage.
I'm pretty sure that the SS representative Silvio Wolf Busch (a classic German guy) was the one who said while enigmatically regarding the flamethrower's devastation, "This is the face of war." The Waffen SS would know that face, because they'd worn it, and been on the receiving end of it, too.
Yeah - and the real thing isn't fun, funny or entertaining. It's horrible. All those people who say the NVA won the Vietnam War? They made it bad enough so that the U.S. withdrew - or, we should say, the "Summer of Love" and that whole chicken*** generation forced us to withdraw - but over 1 million North Vietnamese combatants were killed. How many US dead over the entire 16-year conflict? 58,236. That's what they call a Pyhrric victory. It's estimated that over 2 million Vietnamese from both North and South lost their lives during this bloody war.
What do I have to say to that? Give up Communism. It was "National Socialism" too - remember? Or - no, you don't. They don't teach this stuff in school.