There is an old Russian proverb that says, “When wolves form packs, it portends the coming of starvation, plagues and wars.”  Throughout Russian history, indeed world history, there is evidence that wolf numbers increase substantially just prior to, and during times of severe economic depression, famine, and war.
It is an historic fact that wolves followed Russian troops into battle during WW I and WW II. The spoils of war provided wolves with ample opportunity for a good meal. Author Will Graves’ book, Wolves in Russia – Anxiety through the Ages [c. 2007], chronicles the brutal history of the Russian people’s long association with wolves. It is a compilation of facts detailing man’s interaction with Canis lupus in a part of the world where man and beast have competed against each other for centuries. I urge everyone to read this book. Click here to order a copy directly from the author.
Russian authorities have always feared an uprising among the peasant classes, which is why common citizens are denied the right to bear arms. The Russian government often downplayed and censored the true impacts of wolves on the Russian people and economy fearing the peasant classes would begin arming themselves for protection. The Czars, and the Soviet dictators that followed them, were responsible for the suffering and deaths of thousands of defenseless Russians from untold numbers of wolf attacks. When wolf impacts rose to an intolerable level, the common people demanded that the government take action. All too often, that action was too little, too late.
If the truth were widely publicized about how many people have actually been killed by wolves in Russia, the real cost in ruined lives, livestock losses, and the impact on the economy, westerners may have had second thoughts about allowing wolves to recolonize significant portions of America. The reason wolves have historically killed so many Russians, and so few Americans, stems from the fact that North American explorers, settlers, and citizens, have always been able to confront problem wolves with firearms. As it were, Russian authorities often did not take official action or institute programs designed to retard wolf numbers until long after their rapidly expanding populations began to have severe impacts on an already depressed economy. Trying to fix the problem once it was out of control cost additional lives and resources.
The most important fact that anyone who reads Will Graves’ book will come away with is this: Wolves do not need special privileges, legal protections, or any help from man in order to be a successful species. In fact, just the opposite is true. If man does not consistently take strong measures to stave off wolves, their numbers will increase exponentially until they decimate game species and become a direct and pervasive threat to livestock and humans.
In Russia, the high cost of living with wolves is known as the “wolf tax”. When the “wolf tax” becomes higher than what people can tolerate, the government is called upon to offer “tax breaks”, which means launching an official government sponsored campaign to reduce the numbers of wolves. But governments don’t necessarily take action out of concern over the welfare of their own people. No, the Soviets demonstrated that action against wolves is usually undertaken only when it becomes necessary to preserve the government against a potential uprising among the populace.
The amount of misinformation being spread about wolves among the general population is very similar to the misinformation spread about Islam. Animal rights activists claim wolves are the “sanitizers” of nature and their numbers will balance out. Moderate Muslims claim Islam is a “religion of peace” and that their more radical cousins are small in number and don’t represent the mainstream. Today, despite claims that the “Arab Spring” is actually a beneficial democratic movement, we are seeing a resurgence of radical intolerant Islam and renewed calls for Sharia Law all around the world.
So-called “moderate” Muslims claim terrorist acts and persecution of “infidels” are only carried out by a small minority of religious fanatics. Wolf advocates claim that depredation rates are really insignificant, and that fatal attacks on humans almost never happen. Besides, they say, this is just the price we have to pay for cultural, (oops), I mean “biological diversity”. Is it really just a coincidence that the power and influence of the radical Islamists is growing at the same time an unprecedented global population explosion of wolves is occurring?
There is another old Russian proverb about wolves that we should consider. This one says, “If the horse is not mine, let him eat it.”  In other words, if misfortune happens to somebody else it is of little concern. But when one of our own livestock is killed, or one of our own buildings is blown up, or our own life or liberty becomes threatened, then our tolerance for having wolves living in our midst suddenly vanishes.
In the Bible, the wolf is equated with deception, death, and judgment. The prophet Ezekiel describes evil leaders as behaving “like wolves ravening prey, shedding blood, destroying souls, and receiving dishonest gain.” In the book of Matthew we are warned about those who appear to have our best interest at heart but are really pursuing a hidden evil agenda. We are warned that although such men (and women) are wearing sheep’s clothing, “inwardly they are ravening wolves.”
Now that Halloween is nearly upon us, I thought it would be fitting to share some anecdotal notes about Adolf Hitler’s obsession with wolves. Hitler was a vegetarian and a holistic health practitioner. Described as “paternal” by his inner circle, he did not drink or smoke. However, his self-identification with wolves may be the most revealing and overlooked aspect of his bi-polar nature. Hitler’s obsession with wolves is documented in Robert Waite’s book, The Psychopathic God: Adolph Hitler [c. 1977]. Will Graves pointed out Hitler’s fondness for wolves on page 145 of his book, Wolves in Russia. In addition to all that Graves mentions, I’ve come up with a couple of additional facts to add to what Graves had to say.
Graves noted that Hitler’s closest associates affectionately called him “Wolf”, which was a nickname he promoted and cherished. Blondi, Hitler’s German Shepherd, gave birth to several puppies, one of whom he named “Wolf”. When the first Volkswagon factory was opened, he had it named “Wolfsberg”. Hitler wanted his sister to change her name to “Wolf”. Hitler’s chief secretary for nearly 20 years was Johanna Wolf. Fraulein Wolf remained fiercely loyal to Hitler well after his death and never divulged any information about her former boss.
Hitler truly understood the nature of wolves and sought to emulate them in every facet of his war plan. NAZI attack submarines traveled in “Wolf Packs”. Panzer divisions invaded countries with the lightning speed and brutal savagery of a pack of wolves invading a sheep pasture. NAZI headquarters near the front lines during WW II were named after the wolf: Wolfsschlucht (Wolve’s Gulch) in France, Wehrwolf (Werewolf) in the Ukraine, and Wolfsschanze (Wolf’s Lair) in east Prussia (Poland). Over the course of the war, Hitler spent nearly 800 days in Wolfsschanze.
In a 1994 interview, decades after learning about the true scope of NAZI atrocities, another former secretary, Traudl Junge, claimed that most of Hitler’s secretarial staff were ignorant about the true nature of the concentration camps. Junge finally admitted that there were plenty of clues but, “I think we were cowards and we were not heroes enough to look for better information.” In later years, Junge stated that Hitler “actually tried to manipulate the consciences of the German people.” She noted that some German soldiers tasked with guarding the inmates at concentration camps admitted feeling pity for the victims, but these men simply resolved themselves to overcome such feelings.
Can it be said that America has become a nation of cowards? Are we afraid to look for “better information” about wolves? Are we afraid to ask the hard questions and find out why wolves are being allowed to re-colonize much of America? When our neighbor loses a dog or a cow to wolf depredation are we just thankful it wasn’t one of ours? When a school teacher dies unexpectedly from wolf borne Hydatid disease, are we just glad it wasn’t us?
Judging by the defeat of H.B. 1107 in the Washington State legislature, it appears this is indeed the case. The bill would have required the Washington Department of Health to work with the Department of Fish and Wildlife to, “develop and implement a program to detect, interdict, and assess the epidemiological consequences of diseases that may afflict or may be carried by wolves and the actual and potential impact of wolves’ role in such diseases upon human health in the state.” Animal rights activists and rewilding proponents condemned the bill for “overly strong language” that may stir up “irrational fears” leading to “less public tolerance for wolves”. The bill never had a chance. When it comes to manipulating people’s consciences, Hitler may go down in history as an amateur compared to the environmental elites.
Will Graves noted that Adolf Hitler liked to whistle the tune, “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?” And just as the German people were fooled about Hitler’s real intentions, the American public have been lulled asleep by fairy tales from the environmental left. The one thing we should learn from history is that wolves are nothing to joke about or take lightly.
Hitler’s fascination with wolves extended to his favorite paintings by- Franz Ritter von Stuck. According to art historian, Gordon McFee, Hitler’s favorites were: “Sinnlichkeit” (Sensuality), “Verfolgung” (Pursuit), “Das Laster” (Depravity), “Das böse Gewissen” (Evil Conscience), “Die Sünde” (Sin) and “Die Sirene” (The Sirens). But of all von Stuck’s works, Hitler’s very favorites were “The Wild Huntsman” and “The Wild Chase“. Will Graves describes these painting as, “based on a Teutonic legend about a madman who rides around at night leaving horror and destruction in his wake.” Graves adds, “The madman is followed by a pack of wolves.”
Franz von Stuck’s “madman” can also be interpreted as a depiction of the “Pale Horse rider” as described in the very last book in the Bible. Either way, Teutonic legend or the Biblical bringer of death, we can see why these particular paintings appealed to Hitler. It should be noted that von Stuck completed this painting the year Hitler was born. The striking similarities between von Stuck’s rider and Adolf Hitler are spooky to say the least. We could dismiss this as a coincidence if not for the fact that other artwork by von Stuck, such as “The Guardians of Paradise” also foreshadowed many of the symbols and imagery used by the NAZI’s decades later.
We should find it extremely disturbing that radical Muslims still adore Hitler for launching an all-out extermination campaign against the Jews, while Hitler in turn, idolized wolves. His brutal life demonstrated the horrific harm one human being indwelt with a beast nature can inflict on the rest of humanity. The power to lead millions astray comes from the ability to manipulate and control public opinion.
Americans would do well to learn the lessons taught by centuries of hardship and suffering experienced by the Russian people. Government is often of little help in solving the problems that confront everyday folks. In fact, as is often the case, instead of helping citizens prosper, government can be a major contributor to the problem.
Regardless of who wins the upcoming Presidential election, our hope should not be in the men who rule over us. It would be better to emulate the faith shown by the prostitute Rahab in the book of Joshua. Rahab was instructed to place a thin red cord out her window as a sign that she was to be spared by Joshua’s invading army. That blood-colored life-line represented Rahab’s only hope in escaping from the total destruction about to befall the city. In Psalm 71:5 the same Hebrew word used for Rahab’s thin red “cord” is translated “hope”.
“For thou art my hope, O Lord God.” [Ps 71:5 KJV]