Can Hitler be considered a leader?

In seminary we are answering an assigned question via blackboard on whether or not Hitler could be considered a leader.

Guilty of some shock-value here is some my first post:


My spidey-sense suspects an ambush from Dave (the professor), but going with the conventional definition) of a leader, Hitler would qualify.   I grew up on comic books so I feel I have an advantage here.  When a character attained some kind of super-power he/she had a choice to become either a hero or villain.  (Watch the first Spiderman and memorize his hero creed, “With great power comes great responsibility.”)

But I see our conventional definition of ‘leader’ as an amoral one.  And we need to rely on adjectives to describe the leadership. 

In fact, I would like to take it a step further and suggest that Hitler was an exceptional leader.  Not in terms of morality, of course, but in terms of influence.  Consider this:  he takes such an evil idea, promotes it by propaganda justified by a booming economy, has soldiers (and citizens) perform and justify terrible acts against their natural human conscience, all because he ordered them too and it takes the most powerful armies on the planet to stop him from taking over Europe.  This is exceptional leadership.

Yes, he preyed on the greed, selfishness, and fears of his followers.  Indeed he was a liar, manipulator and monster but he was leading many for his cause. 

We as pastors get frustrated that we can barely move people in the right direction for the best of reasons they not already agree with but claim is the most important cause of all!  I find myself a embarrassed after thinking about this. 




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