I am researching a project on totalitarianism and am trying to find the source of a quote that I read once, but now, cannot find.

The quotation, in essence, was: "Nazi ideology can never be disproved because it is not based on facts." (It was, presumably, based on emotion, fantasy, or ideology.)

I believe it was attributed to Hitler but may have been one of the other Nazi leadership.

Does anyone have an attribution for this statement?

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    It seems unlikely that one of top Nazi's would say that when they strived to give a scientific perfume to their theory's. – Jeroen K Feb 14 '14 at 19:22
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    This question appears to be off-topic because it is a resource request. – Samuel Russell Feb 14 '14 at 21:54
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    @SamuelRussell - is there a better StackExchange board for this? – user3705 Feb 15 '14 at 3:19
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    I agree with Jeroen. I want to point out also that the Nazi's only considered their economics "ideology," while the tone of the quote seems to suggest an inclusion of all Nazi policy. It doesn't seem to be written by a Nazi author. – Razie Mah Feb 17 '14 at 16:55
  • I havent read it, but apparently Hannah Arendt wrote in her totalitarism book why fact checking Nazis didn't work, as their statements where not intendet as statements of fact but statements of intent - don't know where to find the full quote, maybe this is helpful? – mart Apr 4 '17 at 14:07

Since its not a direct quotation, the best match for a Nazi would be Joseph Goebbels. The quote may be a crude way of expressing Goebbels cynical views about using propaganda he knew was lies and purely manipulative. But as you can roughly see from the linked list of his famous quotes, it's rather unlike anything he exactly said in intent or rhetorical construction, so it would be an improper attribution.

I'm quite familiar with this "quote" as a common argument regarding the reason for the persistence of modern holocaust denial. I can't find who conceived of the argument first, but I doubt it comes from the Nazis themselves, since its meant as a criticism. It's difficult to determine who might be the best to attribute it to because the argument in the quote is so vague it roughly matches the ideas held by many Jewish scholars.

My best guess is this quote or argument is coming from Elie Weisel, since he is very famous. Weisel stresses a belief that the Final Solution is beyond rational understanding and must be understood mystically, since it "uniquely [among other horrific events in human history] lacked rationality-it was "evil for it's own sake"' (Finkelstein, Norman. The Holocaust Industry.)

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  • Thank you, I appreciate your forbearance since this wasn't strictly a "history question." – user3705 Feb 22 '14 at 1:43

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