Arizona to use Zyklon B to kill prisoners

I would have imagined it easier for the state to organize a quick firing squad or hanging rather than find an evil chemist or rogue physician willing and able to design gas chambers, lethal chemical agents, drug cocktails, and other Rube Goldberg methods of killing people. They probably don’t have any guillotines in storage, either.

I don’t believe this has anything to do with why the guillotine was abandoned. This was mostly a niche aspect of the use of the guillotine that wasn’t widely known or considered contemporaneously.

Instead the guillotine basically stopped being used when the countries that used it opted to stop utilizing capital punishment entirely. France was the country where the modern guillotine was invented, and it remained the method of execution in France until 1981 when the death penalty was abolished, it was last used in 1977. Germany adopted the guillotine with vigor in the mid 1930s and it was one of the most-favored means of execution for “common” crimes and for ordinary non-military executions of political prisoners (the death camp system for specific genocide being a different thing not conducted using the Nazis criminal justice system), West Germany continued to use the guillotine for the few crimes under its jurisdiction that resulted in death sentences after the war, until 1949 when it abolished capital punishment. East Germany continued practicing the death penalty and using the guillotine until 1966, I don’t know the reasons for them abolishing it, but the death penalty after the 1960s for ordinary crime was very rare in East Germany (political killings, often done in secret, were more common, but still relatively rare compared to some other absolutist countries.)

Sorry, I meant dropped from consideration as a modern form of humane capital punishment. I didn’t realize Germany used guillotines though, so that is something new I learned from you. I had thought guillotines were only used in the Francophone world (France, Vietnam, and I think the French West Indies).


Sometimes a firing squad misses the heart and that causes a very painful death.

The Soviets would fire a single 7.62mm round at the base of the skull close range, and that seemed effective enough for them to do it hundreds of thousands of times.

Yes, and this was the result on the chief executioner under Stalin:

And once, in their tiny vestige of New France

As long as they don’t use bullets made out of BLEI, which is the material the Nazis used to make rifle bullets.

Dunno if you are just trying to make a joke or if you are serious. But I’m sure no one cares if they use the same kind of bullets the Nazis used. No one was shocked and appalled by the kind of bullets the Nazis used, either. The Nazi gas chambers DID shock and appall many people.

But only because they used them in a genocidal way. It was not the method they used that was evil. That’s the point of my objection. The hysterical headlines of “Zyklon B!!! Just what the Nazis used!!!”. But Arizona isn’t committing genocide or killing people based on race or religion. If someone doesn’t approve of the DP, then that’s fine, but it is an intellectually dishonest comparison.

I don’t think it was just that they were using them in a genocidal way. I think the idea of gassing a bunch of innocents was even more appalling than the idea of lining up a bunch of innocents and shooting them. After all, the world banned the use of poison gas in warfare after WWI, and didn’t ban the use of bullets in warfare. I think the very existence of the gas chambers was horrifying to the world.