excalibur2008 wrote:Except Zeon does have stuff in comon with Nazi Germany.
Sure. But, like HellCat
said, Nazi Germany has a lot in common with any number of military dictatorships, and many of the big ones of the 20th century specifically are rather alike. But there are a number of reasons why I think Imperial Japan contributes more to Zeon than most assume.
-both went from democratic governments to militaristic autocratic governments.
So did Japan, which briefly flirted with democracy before the rise of militarism - in fact, the use of a previously benign state ideology to start justifying military aggression against neighbours more closely resembles Imperial Japan than Nazi Germany. The Nazis used ideology to justify their actions, sure, but it was fairly sinister from the outset; the preceding Weimar Republic had none of the state ideology that Nazi Germany had, where Imperial Japan had had its ideology for centuries.
-they have similar looking flags.
Only from 0083
onwards. Before it had the Zeon emblem, and Iron Cross, and something that looks very clearly like the Rising Sun against a white background (I can't find a picture of it at the moment, unfortunately). This supports what HellCat
said: that Zeon is mostly a combination of the various 20th Century dictatorships. The Nazi-esque flag is "official" now, and that fits with the larger Nazi aesthetic that has been attached to Zeon over the years, but aesthetic isn't everything and it wasn't always that way.
-a preference for gassing civilians.
But not their own. In fact, Zeon is completely missing one of Nazi Germany's defining features: death camps for their own undesirables. By all accounts, the actual people of Side 3 lived fairly well under the iron fist of the Zabi regime, with the only purges being the political ones common to fledgling dictatorships. Zeon saw themselves as superior but didn't seek to eliminate the inferior people, just subjugate them.
Actually, that whole foreign policy is really where Zeon mirrors Imperial Japan the most. Their attitude towards Spacenoids is very similar to how Japan viewed the rest of Asia: on the one hand, they claimed they were fighting to unify Asia against external powers, but in practice sought to put themselves in power and slaughtered countless civilians in the process of doing so. It's not an EXACT parallel, but it is intriguingly close.
-both liked to spout off about being superior to the rest of humanity.
So did Japan (see that chapter of Amuro 0082
). Nationalism is a key aspect of the various 20th century dictatorships, and is common to Germany, Russia, and Japan.
-both were led by guys that didn't mind and even justified committing mass murder for their twisted ideologies.
Then there is the whole comparing Gihren Zabi to Adoplh Hitler thing in a conversation.
already addressed this nicely. GIHREN is like Hitler, yes, but his larger regime probably has more in common with the other member of the Axis. Either way, Tomino drew on numerous influences for his war, and it doesn't really reflect any of them perfectly. Zeon is Zeon.
In fact, despite that whole last post, I don't really like giving credit to the whole "The OYW is WWII IN SPACE!!!" camp. Aside from the democracy-VS-dictatorship angle, it's a completely different conflict, and yet you see the comparison pop up a lot.