Why were the German's referred to as "Huns"???

Discussion in 'WWII' started by Miss Neecerie, Oct 16, 2007.

  1. reetpleat

    reetpleat Call Me a Cab

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    Well, they believe that native americans are the lost tribe of israel, so I wouldn't really take their ethnogeographic opinions very seriously.
     
  2. carebear

    carebear My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Escargot always reminded me of chewy lawn clippings sauteed in wine sauce.

    Which I can get from my Honda anytime I choose. :D
     
  3. Twitch

    Twitch My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Hahaha! Now we're gettin wacky by cracky!
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Miss Neecerie

    Miss Neecerie I'll Lock Up

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    he said a moron...not a mormon....

    :eek:
     
  5. K.D. Lightner

    K.D. Lightner Call Me a Cab

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    I'd always thought the Germans were called Huns because Huns were barbarians and the Germans in WW II certainly were.

    I also recall the word "Hessians" being used, but I think that was largely a WW I term. Where did that come from?

    karol
     
  6. dhermann1

    dhermann1 I'll Lock Up

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    Hessians

    During the American Revolution King George hired a bunch of mercenaries from Germany, the Hessians, who fought against the Continental troops. Quite a few of them stayed in America after the war and became farmers in Pennsylvania, etc.
    The phrase "Hun at the Gate" I believe refers to when Attila and his hordes reached the gates of Rome around 451 AD. The Pope went out to talk to them, and somehow managed to convince them to leave. This became a legendary event in Western European history.
    The Huns were a nomadic Asian tribe (or group of tribes) that were affiliated with the ruling Chinese dynasty in the 3rd century AD. After a dynastic upheaval within China, around 300 AD, they were driven out of their native lands, and migrated west. Their pressure caused the tribes north of the Black Sea, the Goths, to move west, thus kicking off the "Barbarian Invasions" that led to the fall of the Roman Empire. The Huns themselves showed up a couple generations later They were wild migratory horsemen, with little political structure. After Attila's death the loose alliance among tribes he had forged though his own personal charisma fell apart, and the Huns vanished from the stage of history. Because of the catastrophic social dinintegration precipitaed by the Barbarian Invasions, and the subsequent "Fall of the Roman Empire", the Huns represented the ultimate nightmare to Europeans right up until modern times.
    Wagner's Ring Cycle operas take place during this time. Attila is one of many characters in the 20 hour, 4 opera epic. Ironic that the German tribes being attacked by Attila should become associated with them centuries later.
     
  7. Haversack

    Haversack One Too Many

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    reetpleat asked in regard to the World War One generation's appreciation of the insult value of of 'Hun', "wre they just that much more educated?"

    I would have to say yes. In Britain, the upper class and a substantial portion of the middle class all had Latin as a basic part of their education. Along with that, they received an appreciation for the history of the Roman Empire as a mirror for their own world-spanning empire. Gibbon's _Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire_ had also been kicking around for over a hundred years. So, yes. Reference to the Huns was understood.

    In regard to who the Huns were, they were one of the many horse-based nomadic peoples who originated and lived on the great plain of the Eurasian Continent which stretches from Northern China to Central Europe. Huns. Pechenegs. Avars. Scythians. Sarmatians. Khazars-(they were Jewish!). Moguls. Magyrs. Mongols. Turks. As far as we understand the terms, some were Caucasoid, some were Mongoloid. In the context of Western Europe, the Huns were the Barbarians' Barbarian. As dhermann1 noted, the Huns were the people that all the other barbarian peoples, Goths-(both Western and Eastern), Vandals, Franks, etc. ran west to get away from.

    As to other derogatory names for Germans during the Wars, I have found the following page to have a pretty good summation of the origins of 'boche' and some of the others.

    http://ezinearticles.com/?Squarehea...d-to-German-Soldiers-of-World-War-I&id=544143

    One not addressed and which was more used in the Second World War is 'Jerry'. Jerry was an English slang term for 'chamber pot'. For those too dedicated to modern technology, a chamber pot is a receptacle which resides under one's bed for the purpose of allowing one to relieve oneself of the evening's libations in the middle of the night without having to face the rigors of inclement weather while trecking to the two-holer at the bottom of the yard. These are often round, high-sided, and deep, with no little resemblance to the German Stahlhelm of the First, and modified somewhat, the Second World War. The allusion is fairly clear: "What do you find inside a Jerry?" In short order the name for the container became the name for the contents.

    As far as foodstuffs becoming derogatory names for particular nationalities, such as Kraut, Limey and Frog, this is a very common practice worldwide. There are almost too many to list and someone's nose would likely get out of joint if I tried. At any rate point, 'Yankee' comes from 'Jan Kees' or 'John Cheese', a derogatory term for a Dutchman in colonial America.

    Haversack.
     
  8. reetpleat

    reetpleat Call Me a Cab

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    I would have to say yes. In Britain, the upper class and a substantial portion of the middle class all had Latin as a basic part of their education. Along with that, they received an appreciation for the history of the Roman Empire as a mirror for their own world-spanning empire. Gibbon's _Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire_ had also been kicking around for over a hundred years. So, yes. Reference to the Huns was understood.

    True. Not only would european history be more important to europeans, but also, people wre just much more educated. I once read an article on what an average american learned in high school in an americna urban high school. Stuff I still haven't studied, and more than many college kids study. Granted, some if it may have been replaced by other things, but still. The level of high school, at least for a kid of the middle or upper class was more in line with a rigorous classic college education.
     
  9. Haversack

    Haversack One Too Many

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    I've got my Grandfather's high school US history textbook. He graduated from Salinas High School in 1918 here in California. It has a fair amount of detail and covers some things like race relations that we today think were ignored. Still, US History is largely based on legal decisions and that was true then as it was in the 1970s when I was in high school.

    Haversack.
     
  10. reetpleat

    reetpleat Call Me a Cab

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    I imagine today, there is more emphasis on different philosophies of what makes history, such as the common people, economic conditions, or other stuff I can't recall but have heard of, not just wars, legal decisions, and elections.
     
  11. Twitch

    Twitch My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    I have heard that many modern history texts cover all of WW II in a bit more than 1 page.:( No wonder there are actually people who have no idea who Hitler or Churchill were.:eusa_doh:
     
  12. Lincsong

    Lincsong I'll Lock Up

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    Or who think Hungary was were the Roman's put all the troops of Genghis Khan.
     
  13. mineral

    mineral One of the Regulars

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    The Huns are one of the "barbarian" groups that crossed the Rhine to attack Rome, as another poster mentioned.

    And of the "barbarians", the Huns are considered the most terrifying and destructive. Everyone was scared of Attila, and many other "barbaric" groups (such as the Visigoths) would ally with their enemy Rome to fight him at the Battle of Chalons. If I remember correctly, there were even stories of how Aetius (Roman general) had trouble raising men to fight Attila after the Battle of Chalons because the Romans were so scared of Attila they would cut their thumbs off (rendering themselves unable to hold a sword) rather than fight.

    Calling the Germans "Huns" is thus a way to insult them as "barbarians". "Back in the day", I think studying history meant studying wars, so "back in the day" this type of historical references would be something everyone would know.
     
  14. reetpleat

    reetpleat Call Me a Cab

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    My god, how did I misread that. Feel free to delete my post. I can't see an edit button on it for myself. It is probably innapropriate anyway as there may be some mormons who are members.
     
  15. Very effective? No--essential, for most. I suggest checking out Dave Grossman's work if you're interested in the psych, but dehumanizing your enemy's a key part of breaking down the normal inhibitions against harming one's fellow human being.

    Not defending the practice, just explaining why it's done.
     
  16. Lincsong

    Lincsong I'll Lock Up

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    I bought a book; World War II in Cartoons 17 years ago and it has a lot of propaganda cartoons from both sides. If I can get a hold of a scanner I'll start a thread on it.
     
  17. reetpleat

    reetpleat Call Me a Cab

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    I watched Independance Day the other day and it occured to me that it is interesting that in tht movie it is okay to hate the aliens becaue they are not human and are vile mean nasty aliens who want to kill all tghe humans.

    But isn't it funny how it becomes okay becaue they are aliens, not humans. Not that long ago, it was much easier to make even europeans the "other."
     
  18. Unfair comparison. Even after they took out many cities and millions, the President as depicted by Bill Pullman was still willing to offer a peaceful option. Their "representative" refused to take it, though.

    And if I had been one of the judges at the postwar tribunals, I woulda hung Curtis LeMay right alongside Hideki Tojo or any of the others.
     
  19. HungaryTom

    HungaryTom One Too Many

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    The only Hun(garian) in the lounge has been somewhat too late in this thread
    -lots of knowledgeable people here.

    I fully agree that the Hun was the same degrading word as the Greek Barbarian to name those others who did not speak their languages. Therefore PSYOPS and War Propaganda searched for a good ugly name with negative connotations.

    Nomads are hated by settled humans since Cain and Abel. There is always a superstition against the nomads. I think there is a portion of jealousy and envy of the settled people versus the nomads as well – lost freedom as a trade-off for comfort, nowadays motorcycle subculture profits a lot from this feeling.

    There is a novel by a Hungarian writer Zsigmond M??ricz called the Barbarians. It is about the trial of shepherds killing each others. The title shows how the judge, an urban man looked down those people of the Puszta (prairies in Hungarian).

    Even the settled down Hungarians were afraid of the then nomadic Cumans arriving through Ukraine thinking they were spies of the Mongolians and just killed the Cuman king – months before we were overthrown by another nomad people: the armies of Batu Khan in 1241.

    The nomadic life on plain grasslands is brutal: living outdoors, protecting your family and only property (cattle, sheep etc.) from the outside world; weather caprices, fellow humans and predators makes ALL human races alike with or without horses. Just think of any nomads from Central Asia (Turkish, Finno-Ugric, Mongolids), Eastern Europe (Cossacks and Hajduk) Middle East (Semitic Bedouins, ancient Jews), Africa (Hamitic people: Masai, Tussi, etc.), and the New World (Prairie Indians and all Indo-German nations playing the nomadic life again as cowboys, vaqueros, gauchos) -all like the freedom and none of them is peaceful.

    In WW2 many Cossacks, Tartars, Central Asian Turks did rebel against the Soviets: the first actions of the Bolsheviki was to crush those independent warriors in the 1920s-1930s as a consequence those people were the first to join the Germans after the Soviet Union was attacked in 1941. And guess what: they served in many cases as cavalry troops.

    Magyar came from Asia - to avoid some misunderstandings- in Asia there are also Caucasian, Negrid (Andamanese) people living besides Mongolid people. It is also said that ostensibly it was the highland of Iran the homeland of the Aryans.

    Reasons of fearing the Huns: After humans tamed the Przewalski horse and had the stirrups invented and combined with the reflex bows; tremendous and invincible weaponry emerged. In traditional arrow shooting the Sagittarian shots arrows when the horse has all fours in the air at full gallop: the reflex bow gives high penetration. This super-weapon of man/horse/arrow combo could be just overthrown in the 19th/20th century with high-speed rifles. There was no defense against it-this warfare was feared by those who could not master it. On the plains this was obviously superior and simple infantrymen could stop such invasions only in stone fortresses and surrounded towns.

    In all those nomad empires it was about being tribute and newcomer tribes had to march in wartimes in the first lines proving their loyalty. This is how Romans were attacked by the Visigoths and Vandals, the Huns were standing behind those auxiliaries.

    The nomadic way of life generates perpetual conflict, even the greatest nations fall after a few generations. There were hierarchies and organizations - simple hordes could not have prevailed, but as at all times perpetual warfare is counter-productive.

    The history records of nomads can not be kept in libraries and archives - there are singers who can chant entire legends from memory for hours. There was also scripture, ancient Hungarians had a rune like alphabet.

    Religions: also a mixture similar to the ethnic origins. On the prairies one lives closer to God, it is impossible to be atheistic there. The very survival among so many dangers, the spectacular nature gives this certainty. There are no borders and ideas spread quickly. Originally animism, shamanism. Later also Nestorian Christianity. Islam did also spread with the speed of wind on the open plains of Central Asia. Ishmaelite nomad traders came also to Hungary and lost their religion just in the 12-13th century. Their ancient denomination by the Magyars was B??sz??rm?©ny.

    Yes, the Chazar converted to Judaism: this Central Asian empire did not want to surrender to their Christian and Islamic neighboring Empires- they chose the eldest form of Monotheism. Hungarians moved from the reach of the Chazar empire with some tribes, the Kabard (literally means 'the rebels').
    Magyars called that part of the World Lev?©dia: between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea (I think that has to do with the name Levite ‚Äì it was common with nomads to have spiritual leaders, high-priests in this case Levites -or Kende, Kundun, etc.- along the chief, their Kaghan or Khan). There are villages in Hungary which are called Kaz?°r, remembering that by-gone empire.

    Mongolians converted to Tibetan Buddhism.

    Only common feature are the burial ceremonies: they create small hills (Kurgan) for the deceased.

    Metallurgy and weaving techniques (rugs) were highly developed among the nomads of Central Asia.

    Their leaders were able to organize campaign, but there is no economic, political, ecological basis to sustain those sudden and often exaggerated conquests. As a result those rapid successes fade quickly. Other thing: whoever was surrendering and adapting was accepted and got dissolved in the stronger nation: this tradition of Turkish originated Cuman (also called Kiptschak, Polovetz) the Iranian originated Yaziges (Alan, Iasi) and these people did became part of the Hungarians nowadays.
    Yes Attila is a common Hungarian name. As it is Iskender (Alexander) in many parts of the world where Alexander the Great conquered. Historical names remembered. Buda - the younger brother of Attila is also remembered in the name of our capital.

    The empire of all horse nomads ended where the prairies belt end in Eurasia - the Carpathian basin. There is no more Steppes west from the Vienna valley. So whenever one people was pushed to the West by a stronger one from the East - they all end up here. Or they escaped to the south, to the Caucasus - and survived there in the valleys as small rest tribes. In the steppes of Russia and Ukraine there was no escape. This is how the Sarmathans, Huns, the Avars all settled in the Carpathian basin, and this is why the Magyars were immediately identified with the Huns in Europe-their raids, culture was quite similar. Hungarians said that they did re-conquer this place - and they were helped by surviving fractions of Avar nomads in the Carpathian basin.

    The typical army branch of the nomads, the light cavalry units were finally phased out only after/during WW2 worldwide – mechanized transport means became more effective only 60-70 years ago.

    It is really strange how deeply rooted that fear is among Western Europeans- even after millenniums and how effectively this Hun word is able to shock and awe
     
  20. Lincsong

    Lincsong I'll Lock Up

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    Interesting Tom.
     

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