Tuesday, March 03, 2009

No, You Are

In the Spectator (U.K.), Melanie Phillips explains how revulsion of the Holocaust is turned into a weapon against Israel:
[S]o many British Jews now feel under siege in a country that to their horror and astonishment has now turned against them -- which they feel every time they switch on the BBC or read the newspapers or go to the office or stand around over drinks with people they once thought were friends but who now force them to make a choice: renounce Israel and be accepted, or support Israel and be a pariah.

I would also make a further point that Rich does not make. Calling Israel a Nazi state retrospectively sanitises the Holocaust and lets complicit Europe off the hook – Britain too. After all, Britain was partly responsible for the murder of thousands of Jews to whom it refused entry to Palestine -- in order to appease the Arabs of Palestine who were in league with the Nazis – and who perished in the Holocaust as a result. If the Jews have become Nazis, then their victimisation at the hands of the Nazis stops being the crime of crimes.

It also allows people safely to hate the Jews once again. As I was told to my face by a prominent man of impeccable liberal views, the enormity of the Holocaust had meant that it was no longer possible to disdain or loathe the Jews as before, at least not in public. But with Israel painted as a Nazi state, it can be open season on the Jews once again.
See also Gates of Vienna.

(via Dan Collins on Protein Wisdom)


Assistant Village Idiot said...

I am almost 56. The one thing that was an absolute universal moral given during my childhood and young adulthood was the innocence of the Jews in the Holocaust and the absolute evil of their persecutors. To even hint otherwise was to be considered unutterably stupid. I could not have envisioned a day - certainly not in my lifetime - when this moral absolute was reversed among decent people.

When such reversals occur, it is usually for reasons of corporate guilt and shame rather than for intellectual reasons. Even self-interest does not spur such rationalization that quickly.

Carl said...

Agreed--like you, I find the shift horrifying. Half a decade ago, Mark Steyn said:

"'Never again' has evolved to mean precisely the kind of passivity that enabled the Holocaust first time round. 'Neville again' would be a better slogan."

Anonymous said...

It's time that Christians and Islamic people assertively said positive things about the Jewish people. The negativity coming from generation after generation of the teachers of Islam and Christianity must stop immediately. Anyone who tolerates an anti-Jewish statement without speaking up, is anti-Jewish. Of course, honest people acknowledge the role of JEALOUSY in anti-Jewish speech and acts. The Holocaust in Germany and Poland and Austria and all those places was an example of envy and simple theft of Jewish property and very unChristian taking of human life, as were the pogroms and the Inquisition. There is no excuse for anyone continuing anti-Jewish behavior. Insanity, jealousy and barbarity rule those anti-Jewish Christians and Muslims, but they are too dishonest to acknowledge their ignorant prejudices. Instead they try to rationalize it. Their essential negativity is apparent.