Dr Robert Jay Lifton THE NAZI DOCTORS:
                        Medical Killing and the
                            Psychology of Genocide ©
  Page 417  
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Introduction to Part III 
The behavior of Nazi doctors suggests the beginnings of a psychology of genocide. To clarify the principles involved, I will first focus systematically on the psychological pattern of doubling, which was the doctors’ overall mechanism for participating in evil. Then it is also necessary to identify certain tendencies in their behavior, promulgated and even demanded by the Auschwitz environment, which greatly facilitated the doubling. This exploration is meant to serve two purposes: First, it can provide new insight into the motivations and actions of Nazi doctors and of Nazis in general. Second, it can raise broader questions about human behavior, about ways in which people, individually and collectively, can embrace various forms of destructiveness and evil, with or without the awareness of doing so. The two purposes, in a very real sense, are one. If there is any truth to the psychological and moral judgments we make about the specific and unique characteristics of Nazi mass murder, we are bound to derive from them principles that apply more widely — principles that speak to the extraordinary threat and potential for self-annihilation that now haunt humankind. 
Medical Killing and the
Psychology of Genocide

Robert J. Lifton
ISBN 0-465-09094
© 1986
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