Why do Romanians think Vlad the Impaler was a Good Guy?

In my survey of the Top Ten Evil people in history, I list Vlad the Impaler as Number 2. Interestingly, every Romanian I talked to thought Vlad the Impaler should be removed from the Evil list because they view him as good and not evil. Yet, these same people don't dispute the fact that he impaled 20,000 men, women, and children and tortured people by ordering them to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed, buried alive, stabbed, etc. He also cut off noses, ears, sexual organs and limbs.

In an effort to understand how our views of evil can be so different, I reproduce an exchange I had with Marius who was born in Romania. Perhaps this will help us understand more generally how the perception of evil can differ from person to person.

Is President Clinton more Evil than Adolph Hitler?

Similarly, I am also trying to understand why some people consider former President Clinton to be as evil, or more evil, than Adolf Hitler who was directly responsible for rounding up and extermination of 6 million Jews and (millions of other people as well). To get a better perspective on this subject and how peoples' views of evil differ so wildly, a few letters are reproduced below.
As you read these letters, what emotions are you feeling?


First let us examine the atrocities committed by Vlad the Impaler. This information comes from

http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Cavern/3987/4.html

and other sources. Please remember that Vlad dipped bread in the blood of his victims and when he was in prision he liked to impale small animals like mice or birds.

Impalement was and is one of the most gruesome ways of dying imaginable. Vlad usually had a horse attached to each of the victim's legs and a sharpened stake was gradually forced into the body. The end of the stake was usually oiled and care was taken that the stake not be too sharp; else the victim might die too rapidly from shock. Normally the stake was inserted into the body through the buttocks and was often forced through the body until it emerged from the mouth. However, there were many instances where victims were impaled through other bodily orifices or through the abdomen or chest. Infants were sometimes impaled on the stake forced through their mothers' chests. The records indicate that victims were sometimes impaled so that they hung upside down on the stake.

Death by impalement was slow and painful. Victims sometimes endured for hours or days. Vlad often had the stakes arranged in various geometric patterns. The most common pattern was a ring of concentric circles in the outskirts of the city that was his target. The height of the spear indicated the rank of the victim. The decaying corpses were often left up for months. It was once reported that an invading Turkish army turned back in fright when it encountered thousands of rotting corpses impaled on the banks of the Danube.

In 1461 Mohammed II, the conqueror of Constantinople, a man not noted for his squeamishness, returned to Constantinople after being sickened by the sight of twenty thousand impaled corpses rotting outside of Vlad's capital of Tirgoviste. The warrior sultan turned command of the campaign against Vlad over to subordinates and returned to Constantinople.

Thousands were often impaled at a single time. Ten thousand were impaled in the Transylvanian city of Sibiu (where Vlad had once lived) in 1460. In 1459, on St. Bartholomew's Day, Vlad had thirty thousand of the merchants and boyars of the Transylvanian city of Brasov impaled. One of the most famous woodcuts of the period shows Vlad feasting amongst a forest of stakes and their grisly burdens outside Brasov while a nearby executioner cuts apart other victims.

Impalement was Vlad's favorite but by no means his only method of torture. The list of tortures employed by this cruel prince reads like an inventory of hell's tools: nails in heads, cutting off of limbs, blinding, strangulation, burning, cutting off of noses and ears, mutilation of sexual organs (especially in the case of women), scalping, skinning, exposure to the elements or to wild animals and boiling alive.

No one was immune to Vlad's attentions. His victims included women and children, peasants and great lords, ambassadors from foreign powers and merchants. However, the vast majority of his victims came from the merchants and boyars of Transylvania and his own Wallachia. Many have attempted to justify Vlad's actions on the basis nascent nationalism and political necessity. Many of the merchants in Transylvania and Wallachia were Saxons who were seen as parasites, preying upon the Romanian natives of Wallachia, while the boyars had proven their disloyalty time and time again. Vlad's own father and older brother were murdered by unfaithful boyars. However, many of Vlad's victims were Wallachians and few deny that he derived a perverted pleasure from his actions.

Vlad began his reign of terror almost as soon as he came to power. His first significant act of cruelty may have been motivated by a desire of revenge as well as a need to solidify his power. Early in his main reign he gave a feast for his boyars and their families to celebrate Easter. Vlad was well aware that many of these same nobles were part of the conspiracy that led to his father's assassination and the burying alive of his elder brother, Mircea. Many had also played a role in the overthrow of numerous Wallachian princes. During the feast Vlad asked his noble guests how many princes had ruled during their life times. All of the nobles present had out lived several princes. One answered that at least thirty princes had held the throne during his life. None had seen less than seven reigns. Vlad immediately had all the assembled nobles arrested. The older boyars and their families were impaled on the spot. The younger and healthier nobles and their families were marched north from Tirgoviste to the ruins of a castle in the mountains above the Arges River. Vlad was determined to rebuild this ancient fortress as his own stronghold and refuge. The enslaved boyars and their families were forced to labor for months rebuilding the old castle with materials from another nearby ruin. According to the reports they labored until the clothes fell off their bodies and then were forced to continue working naked. Very few of the old gentry survived the ordeal of building Castle Vlad.

Throughout his reign Vlad systematically eradicated the old boyar class of Wallachia. The old boyars had repeatedly undermined the power of the prince during previous reigns and had been responsible for the violent overthrow of several princes. Apparently Vlad was determined that his own power be on a modern and thoroughly secure footing. In the place of the executed boyars Vlad promoted new men from among the free peasantry and the middle class; men who would be loyal only to their prince. Many of Vlad's acts of cruelty can be interpreted as efforts to strengthen and modernize the central government at the expense of feudal powers of the nobility and great towns.

Vlad was also constantly on guard against the adherents of the Danesti clan. Some of his raids into Transylvania may have been efforts to capture would-be princes of the Danesti. Several members of the Danesti clan died at Vlad's hands. Vladislav II was murdered soon after Vlad came to power in 1456. Another Danesti prince was captured during one of Vlad's forays into Transylvania. Thousands of the citizens of the town that had sheltered his rival were impaled by Vlad. The captured Danesti prince was forced to read his own funeral oration while kneeling before an open grave before his execution.

Vlad's atrocities against the people of Wallachia were usually attempts to enforce his own moral code upon his country. He appears to have been particularly concerned with female chastity. Maidens who lost their virginity, adulterous wives and unchaste widows were all targets of Vlad's cruelty. Such women often had their sexual organs cut out or their breasts cut off. They were also often impaled through the vagina on red-hot stakes that were forced through the body until they emerged from the mouth. One report tells of the execution of an unfaithful wife. Vlad had the woman's breasts cut off, then she was skinned and impaled in a square in Tirgoviste with her skin lying on a nearby table. Vlad also insisted that his people be honest and hard working. Merchants who cheated their customers were likely to find themselves mounted on a stake beside common thieves.


To: Cliff

From: Marius

You've got your facts wrong about Vlad Tepes at https://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/pickover/good.html.

He did do some of the things you list, but mostly did it to the rich, the aristocrats, and the merchants. He did not spare the peasants either, the ones breaking the law, but they were by far a small percentage of his victims. He was a people's ruler and always sided with the poor. He returned land to the poor, built churches and defended the country against the numerous Ottoman attacks.

Information supporting this fact is easily available in any decent library and even on the Internet. I'm surprised you didn't spend a little more time research this. You've also misspelled Ceausescu's name among other mistakes you make on your page. This sure doesn't add to the credibility you're trying to establish. My point is, why should I believe what you say when not only you're misinformed, but cannot even spell some of the names of the people you talk about?

There are also many spelling and syntax errors on that page which tell me you haven't put much effort into it, especially since you haven't even ran in through a spell checker. Check out the double "the" in the Tepes section, the misspelled word "disembowling", "Germay" in section 5, "buisinesses" in section 7, and many others.

Try some of these links to gain more insight on Tepes:

http://linux21.roknet.ro/iskander/tzepesh.html

http://felix.uttgm.ro/~lfarkas/dracula.html

http://www.vampcastle.com.br/tvlad_i.htm

http://www.eskimo.com/~mwirkk/vladhist.html

Good luck with the research.

Marius


From Cliff

To: Marius

Hi, thanks for your excellent comments and finding of errors. However, it's not clear to me which of the facts I listed about Tepes you dispute.

Are you saying that the facts I listed are wrong, or that they do not make him an evil person?


From: Marius

To: Cliff

>> Are you saying that the facts I listed are wrong, or that they do not make him an evil person?

I'm not addressing the "evil" label since that's something that's different for every person. Just like you say in your web page when talking about the US dropping the atomic bombs. My comments were to the "facts" in that page, that's why I provided you with a few links to help you learn more about Tepes. I'm sure you can find more links, too . Good luck.


From: Cliff

To: Marius

Hi, on the whole, how do you view Vlad? Generally a good person? Was he horrifyingly cruel (even if he did help the poor)?

Yes, I have a Romanian friend who agrees with you. But somehow it's hard for me to "overlook the "atrocities" that I list for him on the web page:

He was a fan of various forms of torture including disemboweling and rectal and facial impalement. Vlad the Impaler tortured thousands while he ate and drunk among the corpses. He impaled every person in the city of Amlas -- 20,000 men, women and children. Vlad often ordered people to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed, buried alive, stabbed, etc. He also liked to cut off noses, ears, sexual organs and limbs. But his favorite method was impalement on stakes, hence the surname "Tepes" which means "The Impaler" in the Romanian language. It is this technique he used in 1457, 1459 and 1460 against Transylvanian merchants who had ignored his trade laws. He also looked upon the poor, vagrants and beggars as thieves. Consequently, he invited all the poor and sick of Wallachia to his princely court in Tirgoviste for a great feast. After the guests ate and drank, Dracula ordered the hall boarded up and set on fire. No one survived.

To me it so odd that Romanians can overlook this. Is it possible that your education reinforced the notion of his goodness, but if you step out of your preconditions, you would actually see him in a more negative light? For example, if you gave the above information to 100 people around the world, and removed the Vlad name, is it likely that most people would think he is evil (even if he helped the poor, as you suggest.)?


From: Marius

To: Cliff

> Yes, I have a Romanian friend who agrees with you. But somehow it's hard for me to "overlook the "atrocities" that I list for him on the web page:

And most Romanians will agree, too. Have you asked yourself why? Do you think maybe there is more to it than what you know and maybe you're missing something? it would not make sense for so many people to believe in something so cruel, would it? This is not meant as proof, but as something to encourage you to read more about it and therefore become more educated on the subject.

>He was a fan of various forms of torture including disemboweling and rectal and facial impalement. Vlad the Impaler tortured thousands while he ate and drunk among the corpses.

This is supported by historical evidence.

> He impaled every person in the city of Amlas -- 20,000 men, women and children. Vlad often ordered people to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed, buried alive, stabbed, etc.

This is a half-truth, therefore not a fact. he did impale that many people in that town, but they were not the inhabitants of the town, please read more on the subject. Most were invading Turks.

> He also liked to cut off noses, ears, sexual organs and limbs. But his favorite method was impalement on stakes, hence the surname "Tepes" which means "The Impaler" in the Romanian language. It is this technique he used in 1457, 1459 and 1460 against Transylvanian merchants who had ignored his trade laws.

This is also supported by history. However, I doubt he did this as a hobby as the text suggests when saying "favorite method", or previously "he liked to cut". The fact that he did it does not also mean he liked it or it was his favorite. That's something that OTHERS assume about the person, not what he stated, therefore it cannot be considered a fact.

> He also looked upon the poor, vagrants and beggars as thieves.

I don't know exactly what you mean by "looked upon". Was it in a good way or bad way?

> Consequently, he invited all the poor and sick of Wallachia to his princely court in Tirgoviste for a great feast. After the guests ate and drank, Vlad ordered the hall boarded up and set on fire. No one survived.

This is the worst distorted fact and very little research is needed to combat it. Those invited were boyars, the rich who would not abide by his laws and help the poor. One of the first things he did when he came to rule is give land to the poor; land taken from these rich people he did indeed kill in a massacre. This is the phrase that struck a chord with me. I probably would have never written to you, and would have labeled your page as just another misinformed, little researched page on the net like many others, had this not been so far from reality, or what historians report. he did indeed kill poor, too (not the ones you mention here), but only those who broke the law, trying to cheat, kill, or anything that was deemed illegal those days (extramarital sex was one such thing). However, the vast majority of his victims were rich people and attacking Turks. this can easily be found in any Romania history book or established accounts of his life.

> To me it so odd that Romanians can overlook this.

Well, they do not overlook what you state since you misstate many facts and make them look like they did happen. Until we can agree on the facts, there is no point in arguing in what the Romanians overlook.

> Is it possible that your education reinforced the notion of his goodness, but if you step out of your preconditions, you would actually see him in a more negative light?

Actually, my education was only part of it. I did read extensively about Vlad Tepes from a variety of authors, not just Romanian ones, and the established historians and authors say what I do. just out of curiosity, how many books have you read about him before you posted your page. Honestly, it doesn't look like you've read any "non-fiction" book judging by the gross errors found there.

> For example, if you gave the above information to 100 people around the world, and removed the Vlad name, is it likely that most people would think he is evil (even if he helped the poor, as you suggest.)?

If I gave the above information to 10 million people, they will think he's evil even if I told them it was Vlad Tepes. However, the above information is distorted, incomplete and biased to fir the profile of "evil" or you wouldn't have his name on that page :-) I insist again (and again), to go read more about him and form an opinion outside of what you already know. Read Romanian authors and foreign ones. Read history books and non-fictional books. Stay away from he Dracula myth. It's just that. If after doing all this with an open mind you haven't changed your opinion, or at least slightly form a different view, then you can be satisfied you've done your job with the web page. Personally, I don't see a job well done there, and the spelling and syntax errors are only a small part of it.

You do not need to replying restating your view since I'm well aware of it just as you're well aware of mine. I'm just saying you only have a small (or very small) part of the whole picture, and unless you have all (or most) pieces to the puzzle, you won't be able to see the clear picture. Good luck in your research.


From: Cliff

To: Marius

Hi, I think we just have different criteria for evil.

It seems that you mostly agree with what I said, but somehow "accept" the horror and torture because to whom they were done.

I mean, this alone would have me on his evil list, and you agree with these facts:

The fact that he is enough to make me think he is evil.

By the way, was Hitler evil?


From: Marius

To: Cliff

> It seems that you mostly agree with what I said, but somehow "accept" the horror and torture because to whom they were done.

I mostly DISAGREE with your statements, and sometimes agree. When I agreed, I stated so, and when i disagreed, i told you why and pointed you to historical facts that you misinterpreted. Misstating facts alone lends you zero credibility, but apparently you have no intention to even validate what you said, but take it for granted. Something like " I said it, it must be right". That's a fallacy in critical thinking. When you misstate a fact, you have the obligation to present proof that what you say is correct and you haven't.

> I mean, this alone would have me on his evil list, and you agree with these facts:

I do not agree and these are not facts. Sorry you cannot see beyond that.

> The fact that he impaled 20,000 men, women and children and often ordered people to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed, buried alive, stabbed, etc. is enough to make me think he is evil.

That's a matter of opinion. Do you think our government is evil? We fought in so many wars, we killed so many people, we execute people at state level, are all those people involved in the process and those who agree with the death penalty evil? I doubt it. Christians kill and killed in the name of God, Budists, Muslims, Hindus and just about every major religion in this world killed for one reason or another, through one method or another. Does that make them and those who believe in their doctrine evil? i doubt it. You have to treat each case particularly. and you have failed to do so with Tepes. You generalize that anyone who does this is worthy of your "evil" label, but fail to research the facts behind your truth. Tell me, is God evil for allowing people to burn in hell? Is he evil for killing so many of the enemies of the Jewish people, some in ways more grotesc then those used by Tepes? I could give you examples from other religions, and non-religious examples. however, i doubt I'll be able to get beyond your generalization of the fact when you think anyone who does a particular thing is evil regardless of the circumstances. That lacks insight and thinking maturity in my opinion, when you don't want to look at an issue as close as possible and only then make an educated decision.

> By the way, was Hitler evil?

Guilt by association is another fallacy in critical thinking. What Hitler did does not compare in any way with what Tepes did, but how would you know when you obviously fail do research it? Please, honestly, don't bother replying since you won't get another answer from me. I feel sorry for firing up the first message. I thought someone who went through the trouble to put up a web site on a subject that obviously interest him would have the willingness and eagerness to research his subjects in detail. That was my mistake and i realize it now. you just want to know what you already know and nothing more. To you nothing justifies anything, and you apply the standards and morals of today's life to those times. you don't even seem to have a grasp of those times but you do hold those people accountable based on today's ethics, morals and standards. Things change and evolve, and this happened to the way people think and behave, too. It wasn't always like this, and it's not like this everywhere in the world, either. You need to realize that and accept the fact that what you consider bad here and now, might not hold true there and then. you state this somewhere, but somehow fail to acknowledge it. There is simply no point in my arguing with you when you don't even want to devote the time and resources to prove that you did research the subject, familiarized yourself as much as you could and then still have the same opinion. In that case, I'd be glad to have an exchange of opinions with you, but when you start with saying "everyone who does this is evil" without even considering anything else, we cannot have an intellectual exchange. But if this works for you, more power to you. I always wanted to know everything, or as much as I could before I passed judgement or made a decision. I realize not everyone is this way. Some are quick to condemn on just rumors. Again, if this works for you, good for you.

Bye.


From: Cliff

To: Marius

Hi, thanks for the info. I know you didn't want me to write back, but yes, if Clinton impaled men, women and children -- even if they were our enemies, I would consider him evil.

Thanks for taking the time to write.

Cliff


From Marius:

To Cliff:

God destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha, and I quote from the Bible: "24 Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrha brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; 25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground."

He also destroyed an entire city (Gabaa) for the rape of an woman. If you add everything up, he probably killed the largest number of people in history, and the highest ratio of people compared to the population at those times.

My question is: Was/IS God evil since obviously he destroyed and killed without mercy many more then anyone else in history? Or are his actions justified and they don't qualify him as evil. I see you rate Jesus on your list of good. How do you rate God? According to your previous messages, nothing justifies killing. Please try to explain this one.


From: Cliff

To: Marius

Good to hear from you. Yes, it does seem that some of the Old Testament acts that are said to have been committed by God and his chosen seem unjust, perhaps almost evil. For example, it seems that during many of the mass killings (e.g. flood and some of your examples, good people probably suffered greatly). And I think some lines in the Bible suggest that children will be punished for the sins of their parents, which sounds unjust. I supposed if God himself came to Earth and impaled men, women, and children, and roasted their feet in fire like Vlad (even if the recipients of the torture were the enemies of the Jews and so forth), I would consider this sort of God as evil.

evil DEFINITIONS: 1a not good morally : WICKED 1b arising from actual or imputed bad character or conduct 2a (archaic) INFERIOR 2b causing discomfort or repulsion : OFFENSIVE 2c DISAGREEABLE 3a causing harm : PERNICIOUS


Note: Marius stopped writing after this. However, in July 2003, I finally found a single Romanian who tended to agree with me. In particular, another "Marius" from Romania made the following comments, which are closer to my way of thinking:

Hey Cliff,

I ran across your list of evil people in history on the web, and I stopped to read about Vlad Tepes and the comments you received from the Romanian guy, Marius.

My name is Marius as well and I am originally from Romania. Just a couple of thoughts to help you understand where the other Marius is coming from. Romania is currently a near-Third World country, where most people are struggling with poverty and and a deep sense of helplessness in the face of continued economic stagnation. There is widespread corruption, and the government leaders are former Communists whose chief interest is not the welfare of the nation but rather their own personal gain. Young people in Romania feel hopeless and cheated to have to live there, and many of them scramble to find a way out. They realize the country is in a big mess and it's not going to get any better anytime soon.

With that kind of background, there are few things for Romanians to be proud of in their native land. Their history may be one of the few things they cling to in an attempt to project a sense of pride as Romanians. Also, in schools, many teachers overemphasize the positive and downplay or fail to mention the negative aspects of the national history. Part of that comes from 40-something years of Communism, when they were only allowed to say that everything was good and the government was doing everything well, and so forth.

So, when you put those two things together, you can better understand where Marius is coming from. I suspect his personal feelings are strongly influenced by the factors outlined above. One one hand, he admits Vlad did all that, and on the other hand, he says he was not evil. If you asked him, I am sure his definition of evil would not be too much different from yours or mine. But in spite of his quick thinking, his mind refuses to put two and two together, and simply admit that Vlad was downright evil.

My point is not so much that you are right and that Vlad was indeed evil. Rather, my major point is that Marius' perspective is representative of a larger mindset common to a lot of Romanian people who are not willing to admit darker aspects of their own history. The pain and the hopelessness brought on by present circumstances forces them to look for something else to be proud of.

Anyway, that is my comment to the whole discussion. I am a native of Romania who is currently living in the United States.

Sincerely yours,

Max (name changed for privacy reasons)


I then received a note from Debi who also did not think Vlad was very evil, or she indicated he was no more evil than Bill Clinton.

From: Debi

[Regarding Clinton], is having oral sex, phone sex.. ((even if your limited intelligence does not recognize these as sex, )) with one woman while married to another... "morally good?" Is lying to a nation, your wife, indictive of "good character" Does have the president of the united states plastered in the world news because he cannot keep his dick to himself not cause you any "discomfort or repulse you" do you not find his excuse for lying (ie.. he doesn't consider it sex, he smoked but did not inhale, ) "offensive"?? Do you think that his apalling behavior, his needless bombs, his saxophone playing does not cause "harm"
by your own definition, clinton IS evil...
and i find your dialogue with marius to be most blind you ignore all he says... you repeat the same ridiculous arguments over and over and over again.... vlad acted in ways that were the accepted norm for his time... they were nothing special or different...
in the 14th and 15th centurys.. impalement and torture were the norm.. i suppose because they did not have civilized means at their disposal like firing squads, hanging, electric chair, fatal injection the atom bomb, various nuclear weapons, gas chambers etc etc
would i list vlad as good?? certainly not but he was no more evil than any other ruler of his day.. up to and including so called religious leaders.... and in context... his day and time to ours;; he was no more evil than clinton, judges that pass out death sentences, most cops, generals, admirals, etc... and congress...
good, evil..... the line is thin indeed.. but you cannot fairly judge a 15th century man by 20th century standards.... and that is what marius was saying...


Hi Debi, great to hear from you.

My personal viewpoint, with which I realize you may not agree, is that Clinton's affair with Monica does not make him as evil as Vlad's acts of horrific torture of 1000s and pleasure from that torture. Similarly, I would rate Hitler or Tomas de Torquemada more evil than Clinton.

I understand that Vlad even dipped bread in the blood of his victims. I also understand that when Vlad was in prision he enjoyed impaling birds and mice, suggesting some kind of pathological pleasure in directly participating and watching agony.

Let me see if I understand what you are saying. Tell me where I misundertand you. Although Vlad tortured people, his acts were essentially identical in nature and scale to his contemporaries. We should not judge him from our contemporary standards. Therefore, you think he is not evil and should be removed from the evil list.

Would you also remove Hitler and Tomas de Torquemada from the list?

Even if impalement was the "standard" way of killing people in Eastern Europe, practiced with great abandon and glee by everyone else, would you permit me to keep him on my evil list because of this:

Vlad the Impaler tortured thousands while he ate and drunk among the corpses. He impaled every person in the city of Amlas -- 20,000 men, women and children. Vlad often ordered people to be skinned, boiled, decapitated, blinded, strangled, hanged, burned, roasted, hacked, nailed, buried alive, stabbed, etc. He also liked to cut off noses, ears, sexual organs and limbs.

You mentioned Clinton. Would you say Clinton is as evil as Hitler, Vlad, or Torquemada?

Thanks, Cliff


From Debi:

clintons affair with monica.. and others.. does not make him as evil as vlad his betrayal of his country.. his attempt to make us all look and feel like idiots that do not know what sex is.. does make him as evil as vlad who NEVER betrayed or lied to his people

I understand that Vlad even dipped bread in the blood of his victims. I also understand that when Vlad was in prision he enjoyed impaling birds and mice, suggesting some kind of pathological pleasure in directly participating and watching agony.

you understand this from what source?????

i never in any way suggested that vlad be removed from the evil list.. i cannot, will not, judge a man that lived over 500 years ago.. what i said was would i list vlad as good?? certainly not but he was no more evil than any other ruler of his day.. up to and including so called religious leaders.... and in context... his day and time to ours;; he was no more evil than clinton, judges that pass out death sentences, most cops, generals, admirals, etc... and congress...

congress takes education away from our children to build bombs to drop on other children.. this keeping our children ignorant and therefore cannonfodder and slave labor.. this IS evil.. it is as bad if not worse than anythin that vlad did. and at least.. he was HONEST about it.. he paraded his victims.. he did not lie about their existence or shuffle the blame onto others..

(caps for emphasis only, i do not yell) I DO NOT SAY HE WAS NOT EVIL.. I SAY HE WAS NO MORE EVIL THAN OTHERS KEEP HIM ON YOUR LIST.. I DO NOT CARE THE WHOLE POINT OF MY LETTER WHICH YOU ARE TOO IGNORANT TO GET IS THAT YOU ARE TOO IGNORANT TO UNDERSTAND WHAT MARIUS WAS ATTEMPTING TO TELL YOU... YOUR INABILITY TO SEE WHAT I WAS SAYING JUST PROVES MY POINT...*SMILE*

"You mentioned Clinton. Would you say Clinton is as evil as Hitler, Vlad, or Torquemada?"

yes.. i would say that clinton is as evil as hitler,,, a liar.. vlad.. a sexual pervert.. and torquemada... he crucifes our children in slavery to ignorance based an the exact same monetary system that torquemada used....

thanks... deb irish, not romanian.. and not an imbicilic fool....


Hi Deb, thanks for your clarification.

I think the fact that you say Clinton is as evil as Hitler and as evil as the leader of the Spanish Inquisition makes your point very clearly. I suppose the six million Jews who Hitler gassed might not have agreed, but who can tell for sure? But forget the Jews. They can't talk because they died. However, it would be interesting to see if your view is shared by a lot of other people. I understand that Clinton's evil in your mind is that he "betrayed his country and attempted to make us all look and feel like idiots." Somehow, in my mind that is a lesser infraction than Hitler's, Torquemada's and Vlad's. But that's just my opinion, and I'm happy you had a chance to give me your point of view.

Thanks again,

Cliff


Martin L. wrote to me about my conversation with Marius.

Dear Mr Pickover

I usually don't bother to write and tell my opinion about things on the internet, but I must tell you that your discussion with the romanian Marius and the irish woman deb about Vlad Tepes is very unintelligent and ignorant from your side.

I cannot understand how you can call yourself Dr. and have such an ignorant and stupid approach to historical matters. I have read to little to know if Vlad Tepes is "evil" or "good". But I certainly know that if you want to know something about historical matters, you cannot go the cinema and look att Count Dracula. Why don't you read some books about the subject, and if you think you don't have the time you shouldn't make a statement about it.

Regarding Clinton Deb you say:

"I think the fact that you say Clinton is as evil as Hitler and as evil as the leader of the Spanish Inquisition makes your point very clearly. I suppose the six million Jews who Hitler gassed might not have agreed, but who can tell for sure? But forget the Jews. They can't talk because they died."

Well, I suppose that the countless Iraqi babies and women who were bombed during the Gulf war might not agree with you that Clinton is a good guy. Neither would the thousands of civilian serbs who were brutally bombed to death by your dear mr Clinton in the last "war of freedom".

I think that you americans should try to consider that other people also have an opinion about what you americans do. Maybe we europeans do not want you to bomb our cities, kill our woman and children and try to rule over governments with the help of your military powers.

I DO NOT say that Vlad is a good guy, for I am not familiar with the subject. But I do say that Bill Clinton is a very, very evil person and that your american government is very very evil if I judge by your own definition of evil.

If you can justify Clintons and your governments actions against the arab people and the european peoples as something good, then you must understand that other people can justify their leaders actions as something good. Because Clintons actions when he is killing arab or european babies and women is not less evil than Vlads actions when (If?) he killed romanian babies and women.

By the way, if you do not understand this simple logic, I cannot understand how you can call yourself an intellectual and a Dr.

Best Regards

Martin Linde, Sweden


My follow-up to Martin follows:

Hi Martin, thanks for your note. I always like to hear from other points of view so I can better understand what people think. I know there are many different perspectives on a subject.

Would it be OK if I add your opinion to the page? Also, would you consider Clinton as evil as Hitler?

Martin's response:

Hello Cliff

Yes you can add my opinion to your page. To your other question, I must answer no. I think that Clinton as a person is much more evil than Adolf Hitler was. I do not have the time or patience to try to get you to understand me, because I have learned from your discussion with Marius that you will not listen to what I am saying. As a matter of fact, you will not even try to understand how I am thinking and reasoning.

As a tip: if you "americans" want to continue ruling the earth for another hundred years or more; try not to be so oversatisfied with yourself and so egocentric. This is neither a noble trait or a good strategy. Your behavior to the rest of the world will punish the whole of your people.

Martin


Monica wrote me and said that Vlad was a "great" human being and that I dishonored his name.

Monica writes: I was looking through the web when I noticed your site I decided to read what interested me on coming over to your page at all. Vlad The Impaler is shown as an evil man on your site and I have no idea why. I read the letters you had sent to you and your defence on the subject that Vlad Tepes was a completely evil man. How you make this decision without knowing the facts and completely dishonour Vlads name I don't know. You say how can a good man kill all those people, well hears an answer. This man (Vlad Tepes) grew up in a very negative place where all he heard was hate the Turks and kill them, and them with no rest. He was given up by his father to be a hostage, the entire time while being a hostage he stood up for what he believed in, what he was taught to believe in. For this he received many whiplashes and punishment. Then he was sent to a cell to be tortured and starved and beaten, worse then his brother (Radu the handsome) for having greater faith in what he thought was right. Then imagine when he has already gone through so much pain he finds out that his father Vlad Dracul and brother Mercia have been killed by the unfaithful boyars. This is only some of what this poor man has gone through and there is for certain things that are this bad we don't even know about so how could you blame this man for wanting revenge?

He was not the first impaler, impaling was a very wide known costume in those days and he learned to do this by looking out his prison cell at the age of seventeen. At that age everything you see has a great affect on you (I should know). Not even recalling that he had an allergy which meant he was allergic to blood and if he was deprived of it he would act out in a strange manner. Now I could go on and on talking about the little I know about this man because I have read many different things and still know I really know nothing even though others say I know my history. I can know little and still know more than you because truthfully it seems that every time you answer back to one of those angry writers (who have a good reason to be) you give them the same old excuses. Asking them about Hitler has nothing to do with Vlad Tepes so I would suggest sticking to the subject and stop changing it to hide the fact that you know nothing and are not willing to listen to all the facts about the man before passing judgement on him. Its seems that you just copied an article you found and added what ever was in your head and called it fact and told yourself thats it there is nothing more to this man and his life and his "crimes" then this. Vlad Tepes was a great, brave man. Strong enough to keep his head up high after going through the life he did. This is coming from someone who isn't Romanian so I was not brought up to think this way. Oh ya and no this isn't Clinton's Monica so keep your mind on the task at hand: learning the facts.
 


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