Vatican exorcist Gabriele Amorth believes some of history's worst dictators and radicals weren't just megomaniacal a**holes; they were possessed by demons who made them do it.
During a recent interview on Vatican Radio, the Vatican's official exorcist, Father Gabriele Amorth, repeated his long-held suspicions that Hitler and Stalin were demonically and/or Satanically possessed while they committed their atrocities. (1) At other times he has implied that Karl Marx became possessed sometime after writing Das Kapital; apparently, publishing half-baked ideas leaves you open to diabolic possession. We'd all better watch out for that, eh?
If Amorth traveled back in time to perform exorcisms on Stalin, Marx, Hitler, et. al., would the world be a different place?
Amorth has written several articles and books on exorcism today, and is President of the International Association of Exorcists. He is, in effect, the world's top exorcist, with a reported record of 300,000 exorcisms (the number of his successes isn't noted).
It's always easier to blame the Devil's influence than to face up our natural tendencies for oppression, violence, and hate. It's even easier to blame the world's ills on rebellion against God.
To Amorth, it's simple: the Nazis turned their back on God, became overshadowed by demons, and perpetrated some of the vilest atrocities of the last century on "inferior" people because they were now working for the Devil. (just as the "witches" of the Middle Ages were supposed to be little more than Satan's drudges)
Interesting theory. Mine's a bit different. I think damn near anyone on this planet could become a fascist under the right circumstances, and the Devil's not the responsible party. We are. Time to stop using Old Nick as our collective scapegoat and take responsibility for our own actions and inaction.
Incidentally, Fr. Amorth has also been one of the most vocal opponents of JK Rowling's books, opining: "Behind Harry Potter hides the signature of the king of the darkness, the devil." (1, 2)
Father Amorth, is Ms. Rowling possessed too? If you performed an exorcism on her, would she begin writing cookbooks?
1. Nick Pisa, "Hitler and Stalin were possessed by the Devil, says Vatican exorcist", 28 August 2006 London Daily Mail (link)
2. Wikipedia entry on Father Amorth