The creation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the months after 9/11, the term "Homeland" has become ingrained in US society.
Matthews said that, "It's a term used by the neocons, they love it. It suggests something strange to me. Like who else are we defending except America? Why don't you just say 'America'? Why doesn't Obama say we defended against attacks against this country? As if we're facing some existential Armageddon threat from these people. Do you buy the phrase 'Homeland'? I never heard it growing up, never heard it in my adulthood. It's a new word. Why are we using it? Is there some other place we're defending? What are we talking about when we say 'Homeland'? What's it about?"
That "blood and soil" that Marshall is referring to was one of the really big slogans of Hitler's Nazi Germany. "Blood and soil - we Germans are the products of this earth, we are a race unique from all others."
Ironically, Hitler stole the term "Homeland" from the 1920s and 1930s Zionist movement's goal to create a Jewish "Homeland" in the Middle East, Hitler wanted to create a "racial" identity for the German people that was tied to German soil.
He wanted to create an identity that went beyond language and culture. He wanted to invent a "German race," and have Germany be that race's "Homeland," all so he could sell to the German people their own racial superiority and use that to justify exterminating others.
So, in 1934, at the Nazi party's big coming-out event, the famous Nuremberg rally, Nazis introduced the term "Homeland."
Prior to that, they'd always referred to Germany as "the Fatherland" or "the Motherland" or "our nation."
But Hitler and his think-tank wanted Germans to think of themselves with what he and Goebbels viewed as the semi-tribal passion that the Zionists had for Israel.
So, in that most famous 1934 Nazi rally's opening speech, Rudolph Hess, Hitler's deputy Fuhrer, said that, "Thanks to Hitler's leadership, Germany will become the homeland. Homeland for all Germans in the world."
Of course, that's the translated version. "Homeland" in German is "heimat."
"Heimat" was used throughout the reign of Hitler and throughout World War II.
Nazi's loved the word, and attached it to everything they could, like the "Nazi Homeland Defense Forces," or the Heimwehr.
But, immediately after Nazi Germany was defeated and World War II came to a close, the word all but disappeared from German vernacular.
Post-war Germans were ashamed to use a word that stood for such terrible things.
Fast-forward nearly 70 years, and while Germans still won't say it, the word "homeland" is everywhere in the United States. Bush and Cheney rolled it out in a big way after 9/11, and our media managed to completely ignore the dark history of the word.
But it's a history that carries with it a danger - the danger that we may begin to think of ourselves as an "exceptional" people, a "race apart" because of our national identification. That we may start to think of the United States as a 'Homeland'.
It's time to retire this artifact of the Nazi era.