Nazis and other Dark Thoughts

A microstory about the inevitability of human history

Today I want to share a thought.

One of those dark ones that stays with you.

I can’t shake it off, and it tastes awful.

The other day I was walking down the street, thinking about history, technology and the atomic bomb (yeah, I like to think big). As I was thinking about all this, I could almost imagine myself walking side by side with Professor Miyagi himself (a history ninja of the twenty-sixth century, in case you haven’t read Dreamtech #1 yet), bouncing my thoughts against his mighty intellect. And… You know what? Let’s do just that!

Isaac turns his baffled eyes at the sudden apparition next to him on the sidewalk, and says, “Oh, wow. Thanks so much for magically showing up, Professor Miyagi. It’s a real honor.”

“Please, Isaac,” he chuckles politely. “Call me Kenji. It’s quite the pleasure to meet the guy that created my world—and myself. But don’t let that get to your head!” he says, wagging a warning finger at Isaac.

“No worries, Kenji. You know me. I’m quite the humble type—for a god. Anyway, perhaps you can help me out here.”

“Tell me.” He wets his lips in patient pose.

“Okay. World War Two. Imagine the Nazis beat the Americans to the atomic bomb.”

“Oh, Goah!”

“Exactly my thoughts. That would have been ended the war, right?”

“Of course. That’s actually what happened in the Pacific. After the atomic bomb, an all-out war stops making sense.”

“Okay, but bear with me for a minute here. Imagine the Nazis had made two bombs, all right? Just like the US had at the beginning. What would—?”

“Bye London. Bye Moscow. Or smaller cities first, to scare them shitless, like in Japan.”

“I said, bear with me, please, Kenji. Okay. So I guess the Soviets and the Brits surrender unconditionally. The US signs an armistice with the Third Reich and returns to its hemisphere.”

“There’s still Japan.”

“Ah, hmm. Let’s keep this simple, all right? Let’s say the Nazis force the US to get out of Asia as well. Japan keeps its Empire. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, communism collapses. Now, how would the world look like afterwards, you think?”

Miyagi laughs, shaking his head, like that was a joke. “Cold war, of course. After the development of the Atomic Bomb, wars can only be served cold. Eurasia would be solid fascist. The US an isolationist democracy. A bleak world.”

“I assume the US would quickly follow up suit with its own nuclear arsenal, like the Soviet Union did in our own timeline.”

“Of course—and not only the US.”

“Exactly!” Isaac snaps his fingers at Miyagi. “That’s exactly what I was thinking about! It’s like you can almost read my mind, Kenji. Isn’t it amazing how alike great minds think? It would indeed be a very different world than today. And not just because we swap a type of dictatorship for another. I think the key difference between both worlds is the lessons that history would extract from their respective world wars.”

“The lessons of history… Hmm… You managed to intrigue me, Isaac. And that isn’t easy.”

“Thanks. You see, in our timeline, the Third Reich was destroyed by a multilateral alliance of ideologically opposed powers. The lesson? Collaboration is power.”

“Okay? And in the timeline with the Nazi bombs, the lesson is…?”

“A few, namely,” Isaac pulls up his thumb, “might makes right.” He raises his index, “Victory is absolute, as is defeat.” Another finger goes up. “And whoever develops the next badass apocalyptic weapon and doesn’t hesitate to use it, stays in the game.”

Miyagi whistles loudly. “Not the most stable of worlds… I wouldn’t give it a decade! Two max.”

“That’s my train of thoughts as well,” Isaac purses his lips, his extremely handsome face contracted in concern.

“Okay!” Miyagi smiles. “That was a fun exercise of alternative history. Now, if you excuse me, I have this awesome piece of literature I have to return to.”

“Wait! I need your opinion as a professional historian.”

“All right?” Miyagi smiles politely.

“Could that have happened?”


“Could the Nazis have developed the bomb before the Americans?”

Miyagi shrugs. “Sure. They certainly had the capability.”

“So there is no—I don’t know how to put this in words—invisible forces of history that inevitably lead humanity down a stream of ever greater progress and community? Where good eventually prevails over evil? Where we learn to live together in peace without destroying our planet, or ourselves?”

“No.” Miyagi blinks. “Anything else?”

“Uh, thanks. I don’t think so. Bye, I guess.”

“Take care.” Miyagi says, and pops out of existence.

Isaac bites his lower lip and turns a worried gaze at the camera.

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