Every Monday, the WoW! community and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question: Is It Time To Forget about the Holocaust?
Bookworm Room: Holocaust Memorial Day is a perfect example of the O’Sullivan principle: ” Any institution that is not explicitly right wing will become left wing over time.” I realized last year that the whole concept of using government to memorialize the Holocaust had been destroyed when Obama managed not to mention Jews even once in his Holocaust remembrance statement:
In a departure from predecessors on both sides of the political aisle, President Trump’s statement Friday marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day did not mention the deaths of six million Jews — a lapse the head of the Anti-Defamation League called “puzzling and troubling.”
In the three-paragraph statement Friday, Trump said: “It is with a heavy heart and somber mind that we remember and honor the victims, survivors, heroes of the Holocaust. It is impossible to fully fathom the depravity and horror inflicted on innocent people by Nazi terror.”
“Yet, we know that in the darkest hours of humanity, light shines the brightest. As we remember those who died, we are deeply grateful to those who risked their lives to save the innocent,” he continued, again referring only to “the innocent.”
“In the name of the perished, I pledge to do everything in my power throughout my Presidency, and my life, to ensure that the forces of evil never again defeat the powers of good,” he concluded. “Together, we will make love and tolerance prevalent throughout the world.”
As I pointed out in my post about Anne Frank, the Left is not only taking the Jews out of the Holocaust, it’s putting the Holocaust into the service of the Palestinians whose deepest desire is to massacre every Jew in Israel.
Israel should continue to honor Holocaust Memorial Day. Jews should continue to honor Holocaust Memorial Day. People of good will should continue to honor it. But for goodness sake, it’s time to get governmental institutions out of the Holocaust Memorial business, because government (at least lately) is inherently Leftist endeavor. Obama was just the visible thin edge of the wedge. The professional Left will continue to do whatever it can, not only to despoil the memory of the Six Million, but to use the Holocaust against the Jews. We need to take that opportunity away from them.
Rob Miller: Well, why not?According to Gavin McInnes, those Jews harping on the Shoah (the Hebrew name for the Holocaust) is turning him into a anti-Semite. Although to be honest, McInnes has always had a certain attitude towards Jews and Israel. I won’t link to the You Tube video concerned (you can find it, I’m sure), but he voices all the usual things said on both the hard Left and the extreme Right about the subject:
‘Oh the Jews think the Holocaust is so special. There are plenty of genocides, so why bother making that one a special case? Time we all moved on, especially the Jews. They’ve milked it enough already.’
‘ Holocaust deniers aren’t really saying it didn’t happen, they just say no gas was used and the death toll wasn’t anywhere near six million.Oh, and most of those died because the Germans lacked enough food to keep them alive.’
‘Oh, no one in the allied countries knew about the Holocaust. That’s why Auschwitz was never bombed.’
‘Hey, Jewish commies were responsible for the Ukrainian genocide, the Holdomor and others as well, so they have nothing to say when it comes to victim hood.’
Every one of these cutesy opinions is either a lie, deliberate bias or the result of extreme ignorance.In McInnes’s case, I’d say all three.
‘Jewish commies’ didn’t make any decisions about the Holdomor. The one who did that was Stalin. Were some people of Jewish birth involved? You bet. But remember, the Soviet Union was about not having any religious affiliation, which is why a lot of Jews on the Left gave up any connection with the religion or ethnicity in order to become communists. They figured that if they had no religion, there would be no reason to hate them anymore, and lots of them, like Famous German Jewish communist Rosa Luxemburg said as much.
Any number of Holocaust deniers, especially the more recent ones have indeed said that no gas was used, and the death toll was far less. Of course, they have no explanation of all those Zyklon B cans that were found when the camps were liberated. Or the ‘shower rooms’ where pieces of the cement were literally clawed away by people desperate to get out of them once the gas was released. Or Zyklon B’s manufacturers, IG Farben’s company records which show why the gas was developed in the first place, and who requested it. Or the records of what was shipped to the Nazi government and where it was shipped.
Oh, and the Allies didn’t know what was going on? Their leaders certainly did. Any thinking human after Kristallnacht knew what the Germans had in store for the Jews. But the leaders knew first hand.
Second Lieutenant Jan Karski was smuggled out of Poland with full documentation and pictures of what was going on. Starting in 1942, Karski reported to the Polish, British and U.S. governments on the situation in Poland, especially on the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto and the Holocaust of Polish Jews. He had also carried out of Poland a microfilm with further information from the underground movement on the extermination of European Jews in German-occupied Poland. The Polish Foreign Minister Count Edward Raczyński provided the Allies on this basis one of the earliest and most accurate accounts of the Holocaust. It led to no action whatsoever.
Karski was finally given an audience with FDR on July 28, 1943. Roosevelt heard him out, but essentially ignored him.
There were others who took huge personal risks to report to the Allies what was happening, like Witold Pilecki, who reported pretty much the same thing. The Allies simply weren’t interested and took no steps to halt the carnage, not even to the extent of simply bombing the railroad tracks leading to the camps to slow down the slaughter.
Finally, was the Holocaust was unique in modern history? Please read what follows and then you tell me:
1) Total extermination of an entire ethnic group as a policy goal
The entire idea behind the Final Solution was just that. To massacre every Jewish man, woman and child. In 1915, if Armenians escaped from the disgusting genocide that was inflicted on them by the Turks and managed to flee to Iran, the Levant, Egypt, Russia or the western world, there was no major effort by the Turks to pursue them and murder them outside Ottoman borders.
Not only that, but many Armenians, especially women and children survived even if they were captured by the Turks. During what amounted to a death march to the Syrian Desert, not only were a number of women and children kidnapped along the way, but many were sold into slavery by their Turkish captors. They lived in misery as slaves, but they lived. Extermination wasn’t the goal.
In contrast, Jewish women and children were marked for death and the Nazis enjoyed nothing more than sterilizing Jews without the benefit of anesthesia.
2) Total extermination of an entire group as a policy goal where no threat existed or was believed to exist:
While there have been many examples of genocide and mass killings in history, total extermination is rare, especially on an industrial scale, and especially when absolutely no threat existed or was even thought to have existed. Except for the Holocaust, there was always a political and/or territorial goal, even if ‘the danger’ was largely in the minds of the perpetrators.
The Ottomans believed the Armenians were trying to carve out a separate nation. The Pakistanis, who carried out a disgusting attack that included mass rape on what is now Bangladesh back in 1970 were trying to retain territory for themselves after ‘West Pakistan’ broke away and to impregnate enough women to dilute the Bengali part of the population. Pol Pot murdered something like a million of his own people who he felt endangered his psychotic regime, The Janjiweed who attacked Darfur had the same goal as the Pakistanis.
There’s no genocide existing where there was no real or construed territorial or political threat…except the Holocaust, which was launched against people who were literally defenseless and no threat whatsoever.
Normally mass killings are confined to a certain area, territory or national border, and there’s no attempt to urge or coerce other countries to participate or to turn over members of the targeted group to the killers…except in the Holocaust.
The Nazis had no problem encouraging their allies and even governments of countries they didn’t occupy to turn over their Jews and in many cases, even to actively participate in either killing them themselves or shipping them to the camps. While the Germans took the primary blame, they were actively assisted by Vichy France, Croatia, the Ukraine, Norway, the Netherlands, Austria and the Baltic countries, just to name a few. Oddly enough, Germany’s allies, Italy and Hungary were harsh in their treatment of Jews, particularly Hungary, but they didn’t round up their Jews and turn them over for the Nazis to take to the camps until a retreating German army occupied the countries. Finland, who had a sort of alliance with Germany against the Russians refused to even consider cooperating, Denmark’s story is well known, and the Bulgarians were also pretty adamant about the matter.
That kind of in-gathering, especially for people who posed no threat of any kind is unique in history.
There are other things about the Holocaust that are unique but who cares? Let’s just forget about it, OK? We’ve gotten over it, why haven’t the Jews?
Well, let it never be said I can’t consider another point of view. But I do want a few things in return. And I think it’s appropriate to consider the motives of the people who really want the Holocaust mostly buried in the memory banks.
The Germans at least considered the matter honestly and paid reparations, but to be honest they got a real bargain because Israel was a broke, brand new country swamped with refugees from both the camps and the Arab world and Ben-Gurion needed the money badly. The monetary amount had nothing to do with the property, businesses, bank accounts and personal property looted from Germany’s Jews, but at least it was something.
But the same thing happened all over Europe, and aside from some pro forma apologies, no one else ever paid a dime. Is some cases, it took decades before these countries even acknowledged that they’d been more than a bit eager to round up their Jews ship them off and cash in. Naturally, they’re eager to bury this part of the past! Not only that, but in a number of shall we say, culturally enriched countries the Holocaust isn’t even taught in public schools anymore ‘because it clashes with what our Muslim students are taught at home and causes problems.’
That’s an actual quote from a UK school head master when questioned about the matter.
Fine by me. Don’t teach about the Shoah, especially your part in it. Faggetaboudit. But in exchange, pay for what you stole from the Jews in today’s money. We can negotiate the terms, perhaps, but you owe the Jewish people big time. And that, by the way is why that feeling of guilt so annoys you.
As far as I’m concerned, that specifically includes the UK. Having your anti-semitic Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain close off Palestine to Jews in violation of the League of Nations Mandate in 1939 when millions of Jews were desperate for a haven cost quite a few lives that could have been saved otherwise. It’s about time you acknowledged that and paid up. Pay up…not that it will ever excuse the cruelty of what your government did and the human suffering it caused. But as our part of the deal, you can placate the UK’s Muslims all you want. And I’ll throw in a sweetener…we’ll even forget about you arming the Arabs to the teeth in 1948 and even officering the Arab Legion when you knew very well their announced intention was genocide of every Jew living in Israel.
The other group that really wants the Holocaust forgotten is a significant part of the Muslim world, except when they’re at the mosque or talking among themselves in Arabic.
Well, I think we can deal here too, Tzadik. After 1948 almost a million Jews were ethnically cleansed from the Arab world simply because they were, you know, Jews. The Arab countries took their cue from the Nazis, and the price for the Jews was the same it was in Germany during the 1930’s…everything they owned for an exit visa, their businesses, bank accounts, homes, personal property, everything.
The most conservative estimates of what was stolen come to just over a trillion dollars in today’s money. That shouldn’t be too hard to raise, should it, with all that oil money and overseas investment? And in exchange, you can buy all the copies of Mein Kampf you want, rant and quote the Qur’an about how evil the Jews are, and we’ll forget all about the Holocaust and how many of you openly supported the Nazis. And the Israelis will even help you with your Iran problem. That, of course, applies to the Arab ‘refugees now living high on the uh…camel, that’s it camel… on Western dole money.
Let’s make a deal, shall we?
If not, stop your whining and face up to what you did, at least.
Laura Rambeau Lee:The only chance we have to avoid repeating the horrors of the past is to never forget the Holocaust and the millions of innocent people Adolph Hitler and his Third Reich coldly and systematically exterminated during the 1940s. We must understand and convey to new generations the methods of indoctrination and propagandizing that can cause seemingly normal people to believe that the unspeakable evils they are committing against their fellow human beings are for a greater good. I have visited Dachau. I have seen the gas showers and the crematoriums. This didn’t happen long ago; this is recent history. Many today try to deny any of this ever happened even though we still have some survivors of these concentration camps and others who witnessed these atrocities living among us.
In Dr. Jordan B. Peterson’s book 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos he writes:
“Memory is not a description of the objective past. Memory is a tool. Memory is the past’s guide to the future. If you remember that something bad happened, and you can figure out why, then you can try to avoid that bad thing happening again. That’s the purpose of memory. It’s not “to remember the past.” It’s to stop the same damn thing from happening over and over.”
This is true on a personal level and on a collective level. Only by remembering can we have any hope of keeping these horrors from happening again. We must make it a point to observe Holocaust Memorial Day, to talk about it, and to never forget.
Well, there it is!
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