If I had a dime for every time someone had brandished Godwin's law in my face for daring to suggest that certain policies and thought patterns within the Shrubbery resembled policies and thought patterns in Nazi Germany, I could at this moment be sipping vin ordinaire on the terrace of my villa in the south of France and laughing up my sleeve at the idiocies of the Bushoviki while safely out of their reach. So imagine my surprise at learning that the doofi at WingNut Daily (hell, no, I'm not linking to them directly; you can get there if you want from Crooks and Liars, but I recommend a full-body decontamination and a thorough cleansing of your computer afterward) have decided, on the principle of IOKIYAR, to flout their own favorite rhetorical principle:
Not only will it work, but one can easily estimate how long it would take. If it took the Germans less than four years to rid themselves of 6 million Jews, many of whom spoke German and were fully integrated into German society, it couldn't possibly take more than eight years to deport 12 million illegal aliens, many of whom don't speak English and are not integrated into American society.
Let's start with the obvious fact that the foregoing quote is a not-so-thinly veiled invitation to ethnic cleansing (which is illegal, immoral, and something we've sent troops to other countries to stop), and could easily degenerate into genocide (ditto). To say that this suggestion is repugnant is to faint with damn praise: I am at a loss for words of sufficient strength and power to indicate the depths of my disgust with anyone who could make such an argument and publish it for public consumption.
The wingnuts didn't do any better with the history than they did with the logic or the ethics. Not that we should be surprised at that, of course.
Six million is a rough approximation of the number of Jews murdered by the Nazis. Not all of them, however, were Germans--in fact, almost none of them were. Germany never had a truly significant Jewish population in the modern era. By the advent of the Nazi regime in 1933, there were perhaps half a million Jews living in Germany proper (or less than 1 percent of the German population of circa 67 million). Only about 80 percent of those Jews had German citizenship; most of the rest were ethnic Poles. By the outbreak of war in 1939, thanks to Nazi policies that encouraged emigration from the Reich, Germany's Jewish population had decreased by about half, to about 250,000 (including some 50,000 in Austria, which was annexed to Germany in 1938).
The overwhelming majority of the Jews who died in the Holocaust came from territories in eastern and central Europe that the Nazis either conquered or annexed. And the Jews in those territories were mostly not as well-assimilated as the German Jews had been into German society. In many cases, they were officially discriminated against (one reason why the Nazis built all the extermination camps in eastern Europe), so the governments in those territories already had records of who they were and where they lived, or the local population could be counted upon to turn them in or help to hunt them down.
And of course the wingnuts vastly overstate the ease with which the Germans were able to collect, systematically rob, transport, and kill those six million unfortunate souls. Scholars estimate that the German railway (Deutsches Reichsbahn, DRB) required around 3,000 trains (scroll down to the section entitled "Holocaust Logistics -- Railroads") to transport the approximately 3 million Holocaust victims who arrived in the death camps in that way. That figure does not include the other trains that were required to bring in supplies to the camps, and for other purposes. As the author notes, while 3,000 trains was only a minuscule fraction of the DRB's total capacity, the figure is potentially misleading.
That is because while the DRB had the matériel to handle the load, it did not have an infinite number of tracks on which to run the trains. Deportation trains competed for slots with troop and supply trains heading for the eastern front, and also with hospital trains bringing back the enormous numbers of German casualties. As the tides of war turned against the Nazis, there were also increasing numbers of refugees, either ethnic Germans or Nazi sympathizers, trying to get back to the borders of the Reich (or at least to territory that the Germans still controlled) ahead of the advancing Russian forces.
Nor were the deportation trains of much use for transporting anything else. Normally, when you send a rail car from one embarkation point to another, you plan on having it filled both ways. That was usually not the case with the deportation trains. They went to the death camps fully loaded, and mostly came back empty, meaning that those cars were for all intents and purposes useless to the rail system.
It should go without saying that anyone who thinks that rounding up 12 million people in the United States is going to be an easy task is deluding him/herself. The rail system here is minuscule in comparison to what was available in Europe in the 1940s, and passenger rail service is virtually nonexistent outside the Northeast Corridor. I seriously doubt that people are going to be willing to travel in boxcars, and I would just love to see the Shrubbery try that piece of political theater without finding themselves in the dock for impeachment (and subsequently for crimes against humanity), one and all. There is also the fact that we don't have anything like a comprehensive national ID system. Exactly how do these maroons expect we're going to be able to identify those who should, according to their warped notions of justice, be deported? Knock on doors and demand to see identity papers? Yeah, that's going to work real well. It would be a logistical, legal, ethical, and moral nightmare.
Fortunately, I don't think it's likely to be happening anytime soon. But I sure do wish that people would stop dreaming about it. I find it disconcerting in the extreme to think that I have to share a country and a citizenship with anyone who would say such a thing.