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Jewless Holocaust. Israel first.

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This is part of Marc H. Ellis’s “Exile and the Prophetic” feature for Mondoweiss. To read the entire series visit the archive page.

Who would have thought the Holocaust would become a central issue in the first weeks of the Trump administration?

International Holocaust Remembrance Day usually passes quietly with a pro forma White House statement about Jewish suffering during the Nazi era coupled with the admonition that such evil should never happen again. This year the White House statement changed radically; Jews mysteriously disappeared from the Holocaust.

News of a Jewless Holocaust went viral with a twist added a few days later. It appears that the State Department drew up a more traditional and historically verifiable Holocaust remembrance statement that had Jews, as they should be, front and center. Somehow, or more likely, purposely, Jews were lost in the translation.

The parsing of the White House’s Jewless Holocaust has sparked much speculation, especially with the rightwing ascendancy and anti-Semitic tendencies that surrounded President Trump and his administration. Yet, as is often the case with strange bedfellows, yet another curious turn has emerged. It appears that a Jewless Holocaust is now coupled with an Israel First foreign policy. The early days of the Trump Administration are full of surprises.

If we leave behind the internal workings of the administration, the State Department/White House flap and the machinations of White House advisers like Steve Bannon, the Holocaust issue, as usual tied to Israel, presents a serious issue: What are Jews to do with a Jewless Holocaust coupled with an Israel First policy?

For his part, Prime Minister Netanyahu and his followers in Israel have little problem with this coupling. Israel’s continuing geographic expansion takes precedence. For the Jewish establishment in the United States, so invested in the issue of anti-Semitism, the coupling is more difficult. Yet another Rubicon beckons in their support of Israel.

Years ago, as Israel became more controversial in the American Jewish community because of its policies toward Palestinians, the debate within the Jewish establishment was whether it could align itself with evangelical Christians whose views on social issues and Jews themselves were suspect. Though with some reluctance, by and large, the Jewish establishment chose the pro-Israel option. Christians, often far to the right politically, were chosen over critically-engaged liberal Jews.

Now another choice appears to be in the making, though in a different political landscape. Evangelical Christians embrace Jews, on their own religious terms to be sure, but nonetheless, in a positive political way. The new administration’s embrace of Israel reflects its essentialist white nationalism view of America. They see the state of Israel as a white nationalist fellow-traveler. Whether this sensibility includes Jews as white Americans is unclear.

For Jews of Conscience, the administration’s Jewless Holocaust/Israel First/White Nationalism combination is troubling beyond words. The recent bomb threats against Jewish institutions heightens the problematic. The rhetoric of solidarity among progressive dissenters opposing Trump and his policies is to combat all forms of racism, including anti-Semitism. Yet, Jews active in these movements know well that ambivalence about Jews and Jewish power exists across the board of social movements.

So on the one hand, with their opposition to Trump and ambivalence about Jews in mind, and on the other, with the knowledge that Jewish establishment monitors, censors, disciplines, in effect, persecutes Jews of Conscience, should Jews of Conscience rush to the aid of the Jewish establishment when it cries foul? Jews of Conscience know full well that the Jewish establishment’s persecution of them won’t end with pledges of solidarity against anti-Semitism.

This is where we have arrived. The cliché that power makes strange bedfellows is upon all Jews and especially Jew of Conscience in this time of national and international emergency. The days ahead will no doubt present more twists and turns on these issues and more. What to do, how to move forward, will necessitate deep thought as well as action.

Marc H. Ellis
About Marc H. Ellis

Marc H. Ellis is Professor of History and Jewish Studies and Director of the Center for the Study of the Global Prophetic. His latest book is Finding Our Voice: Embodying the Prophetic and Other Misadventures.

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73 Responses

  1. Mooser
    Mooser
    February 3, 2017, 2:09 pm

    “It appears that a Jewless Holocaust is now coupled with an Israel First foreign policy.”

    Since when does the US go around trumpeting the past (tactical) defeats and weaknesses of its premier ally? Remember, Israel is only as weak as the US makes it!

  2. JWalters
    JWalters
    February 3, 2017, 6:27 pm

    “with the knowledge that Jewish establishment monitors, censors, disciplines, in effect, persecutes Jews of Conscience, should Jews of Conscience rush to the aid of the Jewish establishment when it cries foul? Jews of Conscience know full well that the Jewish establishment’s persecution of them won’t end with pledges of solidarity against anti-Semitism.”

    How about when the Jewish “establishment” cries “Wolf!”? Has it not been well-established that many of its cries of “Anti-Semitism!” are false, a mere tactic of manipulation? Is it not clear that the Jewish “establishment” is a corrupt, cruel oligarchy content to sacrifice Everybody of Conscience, including Jews?
    http://mondoweiss.net/2017/02/netanyahu-scandals-corruption/
    http://mondoweiss.net/2017/02/slamming-hardhearted-palestinian/

    To Jews of Conscience, Jewish therapist Avigail Abarbanel has said eloquently, “It’s time for American Jews to recognize they have been duped”
    http://mondoweiss.net/2015/07/american-recognize-duped

  3. Rusty Pipes
    Rusty Pipes
    February 3, 2017, 9:34 pm

    Considering the fight that was waged to get Roma people included in the Holocaust museum, how many years have they been excluded from mention on Holocaust Remembrance Day?

    • Qualtrough
      Qualtrough
      February 4, 2017, 1:10 am

      I find it very telling that a Holocaust museum was built in DC despite it being a European event, but there is nothing similar for the Black and Indian holocausts that took place right here in the USA. Especially strange when you consider that Washington DC was often the epicenter in the planning execution of those two once the USA was formed. I guess my ideas about priorities are not shared with our leaders.

      • lysias
        lysias
        February 4, 2017, 9:44 am

        It was easier to get the museum for the Jewish genocide approved precisely because Americans were not responsible. Consistent with the myth that we are a uniquely virtuous nation.

      • Keith
        Keith
        February 4, 2017, 11:43 am

        LYSIAS- “It was easier to get the museum for the Jewish genocide approved precisely because Americans were not responsible.”

        That is exactly correct! Furthermore, what all of these American and European Holocaust museums and studies and remembrances do is to give the de facto impression that the primary victims of mass-murder/genocide were WHITE rather than the untold millions of people of color who perished under Western imperialism and warmongering.

    • lysias
      lysias
      February 4, 2017, 9:42 am

      It was also a fight to get the genocide of the Armenians recognized.

      Seems to me the Trump administration’s Jewless statement about all innocent victims makes it easier to apply “Never again!” to all future genocides.

      • Antidote
        Antidote
        February 4, 2017, 12:45 pm

        “Seems to me the Trump administration’s Jewless statement about all innocent victims makes it easier to apply “Never again!” to all future genocides. ”

        Not only future, but also past ‘genocides’ like the one perpetrated in NYC on 9/11, no doubt. 3 000 innocent civilians killed in an unprovoked attack for no other reason than being American (not all of them Americans, of course). America the victim. Fighting back

      • rosross
        rosross
        February 4, 2017, 9:22 pm

        Yes, and since the Israelis perpetrate their own holocaust on the Palestinians and have done from 1947, and we have had too many other holocausts – Rwanda, Cambodia to mention just two of too many – surely Holocaust Remembrance Day should be about all experiences of Holocaust and not just one group, who, looking at UN Mandated Israel and Occupied Palestine, appear to have learned nothing, in fact, quite the opposite.

  4. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    February 4, 2017, 4:42 am

    RE: “This year the White House statement changed radically; Jews mysteriously disappeared from the Holocaust.” ~ Ellis

    MY COMMENT: In my opinion, that definitely qualifies as “Holocaust denial”, establishing yet another first for the Trump administration.

    #NotNormal
    RESIST ! ! !

    • To order “RESIST” bumper strips – http://www.commondreams.org/resist

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      February 4, 2017, 9:08 pm

      Disappeared? The WH statement about victims of the Holocaust was inclusive, not exclusive; the Jewish victims were simply not singled out by specific mention, same as, e.g., The Roma, who were priority ethnic victim # 1, right up there with the Jews.

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        February 6, 2017, 5:38 pm

        Hitler was dying to add the Slavs to the list, but they were needed (at least for a time) for menial labor.
        At any rate, it clearly appears to me that Jews were the burr(s) under Hitler’s saddle (so to speak).

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        February 6, 2017, 9:50 pm

        ■ Red Axes – ‘Caminho De Dreyfus’

  5. February 4, 2017, 10:59 am

    My God, what extraordinary navel-gazing. Get over yourself, Marc.

    A “Jewless Holocaust…”?? How is that even possible? What sublime disingenuousness.

    More people think Chicago when they think Mardi Gras than think …. think what?? … when they think Holocaust.

    • marc b.
      marc b.
      February 4, 2017, 12:15 pm

      It is disheartening to read this. A professor at a major university incapable of recognizing his own biases, and worse, naive to the tactics of provocation. If you look at the WH statement in isolation, there’s no denial of Jewish victims. The holocaust is by definition the murder of Jews. So how could a statement recognizing the victims of the holocaust on International Holocaust Remembrance Day be reasonably interpreted as erasing Jewish victims from history? It can’t. The real problem for Ellis is that ‘Jews are not front and center’, an admission that there was no excision of Jews from history, but symbolizes their demotion to the rest of humanity. (No one should have to write it, but I will anyway. The German eastern front war had as its goal the elimination of tens of millions of Slavs, permitting the resettlement of Russia with ethnic Germans. That the Germans were incompetent in the execution phase of the plan leads to the whole disgusting accountancy theory, ranking suffering.)

      As to his naïveté, the offending statement was drafted by Boris Epshteyn, his job being political provocation, and the resultant gnashing of teeth was entirely predictable, and so reasonably interpreted as being intended. In sum, the emerging ‘new anti-semitism’ meme gets a publicity boost by the alleged anti-Semite Trump, while settlement is full steam ahead as is the imminent war with Iran. Sounds like a trifecta for the Netanyahu, king of israel and the diaspora.

      • Antidote
        Antidote
        February 4, 2017, 1:21 pm

        “The German eastern front war had as its goal the elimination of tens of millions of Slavs, permitting the resettlement of Russia with ethnic Germans. ”

        There were plenty of conflicting plans around in the Nazi leadership wrt to this, but Russia was for the most part not included in German expansionist and resettlement plans. Nor was the East to settled with Germans. Remember that Aryan and German are not identical, and even if they had won the war, killing all Slavs in Eastern Europe/Western SU would have been wholly impractical and illusionary, quite apart from any moral considerations. The main prize was Ukraine, and it was supposed to be resettled with Germans and other Aryan Europeans, eventually forming a homogenous master race. Slavs were not entirely excluded either, depending on their ‘racial’ qualifications. It is precisely because scientific racism is a bunch of nonsense, no more and no less so than previous or later forms of ethnic purity fantasies, that enabled the Nazis to rather arbitrarily declare whomever they needed to be a polonized or russified German or honorary Aryan, by performing a few skull measurements , or picking blue-eyed children and having them raised by Germans, including Polish, Czech, Ukrainian and Jewish children.

        Hilter, in 1941, reckoned it would take 400 yrs or thereabouts to turn Ukraine into a European California populated by ‘Germans’ , and one had to be careful with the selection of assimilable candidates from the non-German population. In short, the German conquest of the East would have proceeded pretty much along the lines of Western expansion in the US after the Civil War. Lincoln was one of Hitler’s hero’s: Unite Europe in a violent conflict, if necessary, then get rid of the lesser races after using them as slave labour. The Slavs were his “Indians” , massacred or worked to death by building the railroads etc

        It is as counterfactual to assume that a Nazi victory over the Soviets would have produced a worse situation for Europe and the world, as it is to assume the opposite. But to project what happened during the war in the Bloodlands and beyond to the future of a Nazi dominated Europe up to the Urals, or less, is as absurd as to conclude from the atrocities of the civil war and its aftermath that the United States is a genocidal warrior state that should never have exited.

        What we do know is that millions of people died before, during, and after WWII, from the interwar period until long after 1945, as a result of war, bombing, famine, blockades, genocide, massive ethnic cleansing .

        Blaming it all on the Germans is political rather than historical. It makes everyone else look better than they were, and it reduces a very complex and far reaching global disaster to arch villains (Germans) and arch victims (Jews). It is interesting that the entire war has been cast in this mould, featuring two ethnic groups long reviled and both suspected of being capable of “world control”. British or American, or even Russian/Soviet world control – no problem. But if the Germans or Jews take over, even if it’s just a part of Europe or the ME, God help us all. Seriously?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 4, 2017, 3:06 pm

        “Seriously?”

        I see where you are coming from “Antidote”. You think National Socialism has a lot to teach the American political and legal system.

      • February 4, 2017, 6:53 pm

        “The real problem for Ellis is that ‘Jews are not front and center’, an admission that there was no excision of Jews from history, but symbolizes their demotion to the rest of humanity.”

        Bingo.

        “…the offending statement was drafted by Boris Epshteyn, his job being political provocation, and the resultant gnashing of teeth was entirely predictable…”

        Even so, it was over the top.

      • rosross
        rosross
        February 4, 2017, 9:16 pm

        @ Antidote.

        The label Jewish is religious, the labels Polish, Czech, Ukrainian, are nationalities. You cannot compare religions with nationalities. And as anyone knows spending time in Israel or Germany, followers of Judaism from Germany, look like a variation on the theme of European anyway, because of intermarriage and conversion, and would be a similar mix to Poles, Czechs, Ukrainians and more.

        And yes, the Germans have been demonised because of Zionist propaganda which has milked the Jewish experience of Holocaust and has thus needed to make the Germans more evil than anyone else in human history. It was not and is not true of course but propaganda cares not for truth.

        It is the ‘only Jews are victims’ view of the world.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 4, 2017, 9:32 pm

        “It is the ‘only Jews are victims’ view of the world.”

        You just can’t expect people to buy that “Jews as victims of the Holocaust” thing anymore.

        Can anybody think of anything which separated or differentiated the German Jews from any other victims of the Holocaust? And of course, when we say “The Holocaust” we really mean ‘all of World War 2’ of course,

      • eljay
        eljay
        February 4, 2017, 9:50 pm

        || marc b.: … The real problem for Ellis is that ‘Jews are not front and center’, an admission that there was no excision of Jews from history, but symbolizes their demotion to the rest of humanity. … ||

        Mr. Ellis is not the only person troubled by this “demotion”. Zionists seem horribly offended by the notion that the “identity” of Jewish does not make a human being any more special or entitled than any other human being.

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer
        February 4, 2017, 10:13 pm

        @eljay

        Ah yes the core definition of a racial supremacist.

        They can cloak themselves with words and ideologies which they follow until it infringes on their core issues and territoey.

        They are dyed in the wool hard core racists. They are all for equality provided it does not infringe on their speciam preserved space.

        They are as vile and evil as those who are, at least, willing or eager to be more in your face racist such as dohbaker, mikhael, hophmi. A lot of them are like yonah who will mouth platitudes while grinding your face into the mud with their heel.

        They are racists pure and simple. Sophisticated? Sure
        But vile and venal racists in every way
        They are only willing to give up the rights of others for the sake of equality. Their privilege is off limits.

        Bah… dung. Bad dung. The lot of them. At least dohbaker mikhael hophmi are honest about being lowlives. Not reay sure about hophmi… i think he may be deluded enough to believe the crap he spews. Humour the mental midget.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        February 4, 2017, 10:41 pm

        marc b.: The holocaust is by definition the murder of Jews.
        ————————-

        No, the definition of “the Holocaust” is highly contested, and the debate is not new.

        From Peter Novick’s, “The Holocaust in American Life

        When [President Carter’s] President’s Commission on the Holocaust was formally established some months later [1978], with Elie Wiesel as its chairman, it solicited suggestions from numerous sources, including representatives of ethnic groups. The director of the Ukrainian National Information Service wrote that Ukrainians also “met Hitler’s criteria for extermination” and were “numerically the second largest group to be destroyed in … Auschwitz, Treblinka, and Dachau.”

        He asked that whatever was done “reflect the various nationalities and the numerical proportions of the victims of the Nazi Holocaust.”38 Aloysius Mazewski, the president of the Polish-American Congress, insisted that it was Poles, not Ukrainians, who deserved second place to Jews: his total of ten million Holocaust victims was made up of six million Jews, three million Catholic Poles, and one million “other nationalities.”39 On the other hand, the president of the Alliance of Poles of America claimed that “more than six million Christians [mostly Poles]…lost their lives”; he spoke of “the need to memorialize the sufferings and death of our Polish Catholic brothers and sisters—and not only those of Jewish tradition. To do otherwise would make their suffering and death meaningless.”40

        In April 1979, while the commission was deliberating, the first “Days of Remembrance” of the Holocaust were held in the Capitol Rotunda.41 By this time, for whatever reasons, the White House had changed its definition of “the Holocaust.” President Carter spoke of “eleven million innocent victims exterminated—six million of them Jews.” Vice President Walter Mondale spoke of bearing witness “to the unanswered cries of the eleven million.” 42

        This redefinition was, of course, deeply offensive to Wiesel. His commission’s report, delivered to the president in September 1979, was, above all, a rejoinder to Carter’s new characterization. It insisted on the Jewish specificity—the Jewish essence—of the Holocaust: “any attempt to dilute or deny this reality would be to falsify it in the name of misguided universalism.”

        The report contained phrases that Wiesel was to repeat frequently over subsequent years—acknowledging that Nazism had other targets, but insisting on the temporal as well as the conceptual priority of Jewish victimhood: “as night descended, millions of other peoples were swept into this net of death”; “Jews might not have remained the final victims of Nazi genocide but they were certainly its first”; “as always, they began with Jews[;] as always they did not stop with Jews alone.” There were indeed “other victims,” whose existence should be recognized in the museum being recommended, but, the report strongly implied—without quite saying so—they were not victims of “the Holocaust.”43

        The following months saw an intense struggle between Wiesel and Jewish staffers in the White House over how the Holocaust should be described—who would be included. It was “morally repugnant,” said one presidential aide, “to create a category of second-class victims of the Holocaust as Mr. Wiesel would have us do.”44

        Stuart Eizenstadt urged Carter that in the executive order creating the Holocaust Memorial Council (successor to the presidential commission) he should “make clear the memorial is to honor the memory of all victims of the Holocaust—six million Jews and some five million other peoples.”45 This definition, one staff member pointed out, was that of Simon Wiesenthal, “whose Holocaust credentials are as good as anyone else I know.”46

        At the eleventh hour there was an ingenious proposal from Wiesel and the commission’s new director, Monroe Freedman, to resolve the question through punctuation. The White House draft spoke of commemorating “The Holocaust, the systematic, state-sponsored extermination of six million Jews and millions of other victims of Nazism during World War II.”

        The proposed alternative would make a conceptual separation through the use of dashes: “The Holocaust—the systematic state-sponsored extermination of six million Jews—and the millions of other Nazi victims.”47

        * * * *
        […]While Eastern European ethnic groups would prefer the original wording, the definitional issue was not, for them, “a live or die matter as it is with Wiesel.” 48 But an exasperated Carter refused to accept the dashes, and the executive order creating the Holocaust Memorial Council referred to eleven million victims. Wiesel did not re-sign, and the museum he was charged with creating was officially committed to memorializing “eleven million.”

        This was clearly unacceptable to Wiesel and others for whom the “big truth” about the Holocaust was its Jewish specificity. They responded to the expansion of the victims of the Holocaust to eleven million the way devout Christians would respond to the expansion of the victims of the Crucifixion to three—the Son of God and two thieves. Weisel’s forces mobilized, both inside and outside the Holocaust Council, to ensure that, despite the executive order, their definition would prevail. [emphasis added]

        —————————–

        See a longer excerpt and other commentary on the topic here:

        http://mondoweiss.net/2016/07/remembering-inspired-palestine/#comment-846007

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer
        February 4, 2017, 11:56 pm

        @Mooser

        I personay view the Jewish holocaust as a very stark and vivid incidence of mans inhumanity towards man. In that sense it is extremely unique to me. In that sense it must never be forgotten or understated.

        My views are due to my era of living.

        As I have grown and gained further knowledge I do realize the holocaust is not unique. There are peoples who are no longer with us. There were others who were equally targetted for annihilation. For the same reason of being who they were.

        I think the lessons and horror of the holocaust must never be forgotten. I hope there is never a more current occurrence of such depravity which can serve as a lesson for future generations.

        Yes there is another lesson in ignoring prior genocides and ignoring or downplaying other targets of the holocaust.

        I do think the current flack has shown the inner morality of those who only concern themselves with crimes against their tribe versus those who consider humans to be truly equal.

        Everything evolves. Learn from from it. It is all we can do and even the best people can get it wrong.

        No… a cdntury has shown thaf zionism is the wrong. The racism is as vile as any other. It is no longer a point of debate. Only racists defend it

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        February 4, 2017, 11:58 pm

        ‘The proposed alternative would make a conceptual separation through the use of dashes: “The Holocaust—the systematic state-sponsored extermination of six million Jews—and the millions of other Nazi victims.”’

        So punctuation does matter, after all?

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        February 5, 2017, 6:20 am

        Zionists seem horribly offended by the notion that the “identity” of Jewish does not make a human being any more special or entitled than any other human being.

        Not only Zionists (and Ellis is not a particularly Zionistic character.) This is nationalism, a logical result of the tribal, i.e. supposedly biologic nature of the religion, as opposed to the universalist later monotheisms. In smaller words, accepting the idea of an irreligious Jew will allow that supremacist nonsense.

      • marc b.
        marc b.
        February 5, 2017, 9:46 am

        Antidote, this is the definition from the website for the U.S. Museum:

        The Holocaust was the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of six million Jews by the Nazi regime and its collaborators. Holocaust is a word of Greek origin meaning “sacrifice by fire.” The Nazis, who came to power in Germany in January 1933, believed that Germans were “racially superior” and that the Jews, deemed “inferior,” were an alien threat to the so-called German racial community.

        Yad Vashem also officially defines the Holocaust in the same narrow way. Wikipedia regurgitates this definition. In some cases, ‘other victims’ are recognized, but not as part of the Holocaust as a separable offense. Other definitions refer to the Holocaust and the Shoah as interchangeable. Few include non-Jewish victims as part of the Holocaust definition, even those rarely identifying the victims any more precisely than ‘others’ or ‘millions of others’.

        If the Holocaust was not commemorated as a distinct historical event directed at European Jews there would be no controversy with the Epshteyn drafted press release.

      • Antidote
        Antidote
        February 5, 2017, 1:46 pm

        @rosross

        “The label Jewish is religious, the labels Polish, Czech, Ukrainian, are nationalities. You cannot compare religions with nationalities”

        Could you please explain this important point to, for instance, the Poles, or at least their ruling “Freedom and Justice” party?You see, they think that to be Polish is identical with being Catholic, and they can actually provide plenty of evidence that this is how “Polish”has been defined for centuries. Caused a lot of trouble for the Poles and others. Still, they won’t let it go. The Ukrainians are split on religion which in turn only encourages the Poles in maintaining that your state goes down the drain unless you are united on religion. The Czechs are the least religious people in Europe and have been on a slow learning curve to reach that point since their defenestrations of non-protestant rulers that launched the 30 Year War. One reason why Poles and Czechs have despised each other for more than a century.

        “And yes, the Germans have been demonised because of Zionist propaganda which has milked the Jewish experience of Holocaust and has thus needed to make the Germans more evil than anyone else in human history. ”

        Fine, but the Zionists were and are not the only and, imho, not even the worst offenders. Plenty of other countries involved in WW II had much to gain in both presenting this particular genocide as the worst crime in human history, and in exclusively blaming the Germans for its design and execution.

        Hence Churchill, hellbent on saving the coherence and alleged moral superiority of an empire where ‘the sun never set, and the blood never dried’ pronounced Auschwitz as the worst crime in human history a full year before the liberation of the camp by the Soviets. Context: loud protests in Britain against what was then openly called the ‘bombing holocaust’ in Britain, even inside the British airforce. Use that term today, as did J Friedrich in his controversial “The Fire”, and Holocaust denial charges abound – esp in the UK and US. Context of Friedrich’s publication: Iraq War. I would say the Vietnam War , not just the Israeli 1967 war, provides an important context to the rediscovery of the Holocaust as the worst ever crime, and how morally right it was to fight the Nazis (now Soviets) even at the cost of millions of civilian lives and the physical destruction of much of Europe (not just Germany). The Soviets, while not exactly highlighting Jewish suffering, also have plenty of reasons to demonize the Germans. Makes Stalin as liberator more plausible, esp in Eastern Europe, incl Ukraine.

        The list of beneficiaries is long, esp among the collaborators in the Bloodlands (party line: The Nazis were so evil and brutal we could not resist them or save more Jews than we did)

        The Holocaust provides endless justification for destructive and genocidal wars, no matter what noble ‘never again’ motives are being claimed in Israel or elsewhere

      • catalan
        catalan
        February 5, 2017, 6:26 pm

        “Germans so murderously against them?””
        Mooser,
        The actual murders were performed by a small and determined group of people. Shockingly small. For instance, about thirty people managed the Belzek camp, where hundreds of thousands were killed. Same with Sobibor. So “the Germans” as you put it were not “murderous” against the Jews. Most had to deal with everyday affairs or manage their own problems. Mass murder was always part of the arsenal and was done by assyrians, romans, and athenians. In 1939 the tools were available to do mass murder on a big scale. Same old with better tools. Also, the plan was to murder the majority of Poles and Ukrainans and turn the rest into slaves. To paraphrase your question, what turned the Germans so murderously against Poles and Ukrainians? The tragedy began in 1764 with the first partition of Poland. After that it all just went wrong for Europe. Poland was the key to everything.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        February 5, 2017, 11:05 pm

        Antidote,

        Thanks for the excellent reminder on the merging of Stone-age theocracy with Romantic nationalism. That’s of course what makes the cocktail more murderous than its single parts. None more officially murderous than Zionism, of course.

      • eljay
        eljay
        February 6, 2017, 8:23 am

        || catalan: … Mass murder was always part of the arsenal and was done by assyrians, romans, and athenians. … ||

        And Jews. Give credit where credit is due.

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      February 4, 2017, 8:49 pm

      “More people think Chicago when they think Mardi Gras than think …. think what?? … when they think Holocaust. ”

      Roma

      • rosross
        rosross
        February 5, 2017, 12:55 am

        @sibiriak,

        In terms of numbers who died at the hands of the Nazis, the figures are theoretical, firstly because of the difficulties of assessing numbers at the time and following the end of the war, the impossibility of questioning figures because of Zionism’s insistence on six million Jews.

        Some data has around six million Ukrainians dying, and on a per capita basis more Gypsies died than anyone. But Stalin, following on from the Bolshevik revolution, supposedly killed another 60 million – that magical 6 again – but how accurate is that and it is a Holocaust generally ignored.

        Whether 600, 6,000, 600,000, 6 million or 60 million, they are all too much and that is why one could only wish that Holocaust Memorials actually achieved something eventually. To do that they need to be about all experiences of Holocaust and not just one.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        February 5, 2017, 4:25 am

        “they are all too much and that is why one could only wish that Holocaust Memorials actually achieved something eventually. ”

        Achieve what? No more mass murders? Are you some sort of vegetarian sissy?

        https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qjAHw2DEBgw

      • catalan
        catalan
        February 5, 2017, 8:45 am

        “In terms of numbers who died at the hands of the Nazis, the figures are theoretical” Rosross
        I don’t understand that line of though – it is relatively easy to find out the number of Jews killed. There are well known and accepted figures on the size of the prewar Jewish communities – for instance those in Krakow, Budapest, Vienna, Lviv, Pinsk, Thessaloniki. Many of them measured in the hundreds of thousands. For example, before Bulgaria entered Macedonia, there were 12,000 Jews. I believe that about 10 returned after the war. Anyone can visit the cities mentioned, like Krakow – where are their Jewish inhabitants? Are they all hiding in some massive conspiracy? The names of many of these people are documented. If they were not murdered, where did they go?

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        February 5, 2017, 9:14 am

        The shocking theological significance of the term ‘holocaust’, whole burnt offering appropriated completely by God, cannot extend to non-Jewish victims. The victim per Leviticus 1 was taken from the herd in the expectation of God’s favour to the herd and its pastoralists. After WW2,there was no one else but for the Jews resuming the sovereignty of Palestine to whom God would show exemplary favour. The idea makes no sense in reference to a mass of individuals, however numerous and however deserving of sympathy. Even the Roma, victims en masse of injustice, are not a group united by religion or accorded, as a group, religious significance in common opinion. As long as theology clings to history in this fashion through this word the there can’t be moral equivalence between the Jewish and the wider sets of suffering.

      • marc b.
        marc b.
        February 5, 2017, 9:57 am

        Catalan, if it were so easy, why has no one done it? Respected historians have estimates ranging from 5.1 to 6 million, and these estimates are cited by Yad Vashem in its Holocaust history, so presumably there is no controversy that a precise calculation is impossible.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        February 5, 2017, 12:04 pm

        The problem both of defining Romani people and of counting their casualties is very difficult – even the Wikipedia article on Porajmos, which is what some Romani call the event, is enough to reveal that.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 5, 2017, 3:00 pm

        “Achieve what? No more mass murders? Are you some sort of vegetarian sissy?”

        Of course! I see it now, “RoHa”! The stark choice between a “vegetarian” diet and our real human dietary need, anthropophagy !

  6. Mooser
    Mooser
    February 4, 2017, 1:36 pm

    “How Could Modern Orthodox Judaism Produce Jared Kushner?”

    By: (who else?)

    Peter Beinart!! Who is shocked, shocked that gambling is going on in this casino!

  7. Elizabeth Block
    Elizabeth Block
    February 4, 2017, 5:41 pm

    Marc Ellis was surprised. I was not. The mainstream Jewish establishment has for years tolerated anti-Semitism if it was coupled with support for Israel.

    This includes the Wiesenthal Centre. A friend of mine has been donating to them for a long time, because they do – or they did – speak up on anti-Semitism. He phoned them to ask why they hadn’t said anything about Trump’s Jewless Holocaust. He was told their position was on their website. Not good enough! They have to speak out in public. But they didn’t, and I don’t suppose they will.

    New Yorker cartoon: The crossing of the Red Sea, Moses in the lead. Behind him, one man says to another, “He’s all right. I just wish he were a little more pro-Israel.”
    Yikes.

    • rosross
      rosross
      February 4, 2017, 9:12 pm

      Surely any remembrance of the human experience of holocaust should not put the focus on one group’s experience of holocaust, i.e. the Jewish experience of holocaust under the Nazis, but on the general experience wherever it has happened, which, tragically, is frequently throughout human recorded history and continues to this day.

    • marc b.
      marc b.
      February 5, 2017, 10:07 am

      I don’t see how ‘mainstream establishment’ inaction is surprising or even controversial. Jewish identity is now inseparable from the state of Israel, so of course the survival of Israel would trump the memory of the holocaust. and there are still many who believe Israel and ‘the Jews’ cannot survive as a nation/people without enemies. ‘There is no Jew without the anti-Semite.’ See Dershowitz, The Vanishing American Jew. This blow up fits neatly into that paradigm.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 5, 2017, 1:44 pm

        .” ‘There is no Jew without the anti-Semite.’”

        Now, there’s a psychologically healthy, religiously valid, and oh-so-rewarding way to do things: Define and validate yourself by the people that hate you! (Make sure to continue doing it, make a fetish out of it, long after any real need is gone, too. What could go wrong?)

        Yup, we should stick with that, and there will be 2 billion Jews in no time!

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        February 5, 2017, 5:08 pm

        So if we nasty judeophobes want to get rid of the Jews, we should love them, and then they will all disappear?

        OK, Mooser, I’m going to adore you to oblivion.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 6, 2017, 11:27 am

        “OK, Mooser, I’m going to adore you to oblivion.”

        You got it, “RoHa”! Exactly the right plan. The more you adore me, the less reason I have to remain Jewish!

        And what could be more anti-semitic than prying a Jew away from his faith by loving him?

  8. rosross
    rosross
    February 4, 2017, 9:09 pm

    Zionism hijacked the human experience of Holocaust, to sell the lie that it was a Jewish experience, in order to justify the colonisation of Palestine.

    Tragically for humanity, the holocausts wrought by the Nazis, were not the first, worst, nor the last.

    As to Trump, one thing is certain, he is not predictable. And perhaps whoever advises him knows that encouraging the Israelis to continue on their bigoted path of colonisation, just brings the one-state solution that much closer, where Israeli ‘Jews’ (many are atheist and not Jewish by any stretch of the imagination) are outnumbered by non-Jews, which, in any other nation which calls itself a democracy and part of the developed world, would not be a cause for horror, but simply a democratic reality where State and Religion are separate.

  9. catalan
    catalan
    February 5, 2017, 12:05 pm

    a precise calculation is impossible” Marc b
    Marc, my point was that of course in the carnage that was the war, precision is not always possible, but there are reliable estimates showing the devastation of the Jewish communities in Europe. In some cases, there is a.high degree of accuracy – for example, the Jews of Prague, Amsterdam, Berlin, Thesaloniki are accounted for. I think that there is some confusion because of the multiple mass murders in Ukraine and Belarus, where the records are less evident, since also communists, professors, Poles, professors and many others were.massacred. The number of victims in Macedonia and Greece are.accounted for pretty much to the last.one. But we may never know how many Jews and others were killed at Babiy Yar.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      February 5, 2017, 1:18 pm

      “Marc, my point was that of course in the carnage that was the war, precision is not always possible, but there are reliable estimates showing the devastation of the Jewish communities in Europe”

      After WW2, the Reich Archives (no, I am not talking about a bunch of Karl Richter recordings!) were captured by Allied forces, in Berlin and major German cities and Occupied places.. The Reich was a meticulous record-keeping organization, and cross referenced against known population records, these archives were able to answer many questions about the numbers involved pretty definitively and accurately.

      Of course, the one question we seem to be avoiding is why the Nazis had such a grudge against Jews, and why the Nazis felt it was necessary to try and eliminate Jews.

      Does anybody know? What had the Jews done to Germany, to turn the Germans so murderously against them?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        February 5, 2017, 3:41 pm

        “Does anybody know? What had the Jews done to Germany, to turn the Germans so murderously against them?”

        Whatever the Jews did to Germany, it was obviously bad enough that the extermination of Jews can be seen as the result of wars between nationalities, and not a “Holocaust” of people of a particular religion.

        So that we can put the entire Holocaust thing to rest, and defeat those who would say that this is “Holocaust denial”, we need to be able to point to the Jews crimes against Germany, right?
        Does anybody know what they are? Must have been awful things we Jews did to Germany. What were they?

  10. echinococcus
    echinococcus
    February 5, 2017, 12:27 pm

    How about finally ending the brainless use of an absurd, ill-fitting term like “Holocaust”, invented expressly for exclusive use by the marketers of ethnic particularisms? Genocide is unfortunately a phenomenon that has made its appearance in practically all parts of the world, more frequently in recent times. Precisely why an internal convention to counter the practice and a detailed definition were set up.

    Whu should we be using a term like “Holocaust” chosen on purpose from a lot of other, invented and improperly applied terms, to set the genocide of one particular people totally apart from other catastrophes and crimes against humanity?

    Just calling one set of events “Holocaust” makes it easy for the ones who are commercializing it to deny the genocide of the Armenians or Palestinians.

  11. Ossinev
    Ossinev
    February 5, 2017, 1:50 pm

    @Sibiriak
    “No, the definition of “the Holocaust” is highly contested, and the debate is not new.”

    Found these:

    “Holocaust“ comes from the the Greek word holokauston, itself a translation of the Hebrew olah, meaning “completely burnt offering to God,” implying that Jews and other “undesirables” murdered during World War II were a sacrifice to God.”

    and:

    1Destruction or slaughter on a mass scale, especially caused by fire or nuclear war:
    ‘a nuclear holocaust’
    1.1the Holocaust The mass murder of Jews under the German Nazi regime during the period 1941–5. More than 6 million European Jews, as well as members of other persecuted groups, were murdered at concentration camps such as Auschwitz.
    2historical A Jewish sacrificial offering which was burnt completely on an altar.

    I am of course not a Hebrew or Jewish scholar but the common theme is that of “a sacrificial offering” ie presumably something which was for the benefit of those offering. Perversely then it could be argued that the Holocaust as in Nazi Holocaust worked as an “offering” as the “Jewish people” ended up having Palestine (ie the land stolen from them by those nasty Romans) gifted on a plate by the Allies because of their guilt over the Nazi mass slaughter of Jews during the Second World War.

    Yes Zionists have appropriated the term as being exclusive to Jews but if defined as “mass slaughter” then it applies to all mass slaughters of inumerabl peoples ethroughout the world because of their race or religion before and since including the current mass slaughter in Syria.

    My only surprise is that AIPAC or some other Zionist organisation has not applied for a registered trademark status to protect the brand. Whoops howls of Anti-Semitism in my ears but I will ignore. When it comes to cynicism and contempt Zionists reap what they sow.

    • echinococcus
      echinococcus
      February 5, 2017, 10:22 pm

      Ossinev,

      I see that some Zio-infection has turned Greek into Zummus:

      Greek word holokauston, itself a translation of the Hebrew olah,

      Translation my eye and foot. όλος/holos= whole and καυστόν/kauston =burnt, both 1000% Indo-european and Greek. Wonder what kind of sewer that nonsense came out.

      Now, the problem with the (rather inappropriate anyway) term is that it has been trademarked Z in practice.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        February 6, 2017, 2:43 am

        It is indeed a Greek word, but it was chosen by the Septuagint translators to interpret olah in Leviticus,, which I understand means ‘that which ascends’, so invokes both ascending to God and the flame and smoke of a fire. Wikipedia reminds me that another word (which my predictive text just won’t accept) meaning ‘entire’, is associated with olah in Leviticus. So it seems reasonable for the LXX to use holocauston – it goes up to God entirely – rather than the standard Greek word thusia, which was understood as a sacrifice where the meat was shared around. You may think I should be ashamed of myself for relying on Wikipedia but it’s early and I’m still in bed. The whole sacrifice was a special thing to indicate special dedication to God but Leviticus’ use of ‘from the herd’ reminds us that the sacrifice may be while and entire in itself but is also seeking Gid’s favour for the wider whole, the herd and the people. It is because the term is so theological (in my opinion verging on blasphemy) and because Wiesel’s dark theology, suggesting God’s mighty favour to the people after the sacrifice, had such power that the word Holocaust in common usage gained hooks which attach it to Jewish suffering and a surface which from which reference to other suffering slides away.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        February 6, 2017, 8:15 pm

        I love that thing about acquiring hooks for selective tribal attachment. Seriously now, it’s one more case of attribution by theologians of improbable intentions to the 70 translators, on the strength of nothing: in choosing terms, a good translator does often rely on alliteration and association in the target language –not in the source language. Θυσία is, as you well know, a general term for sacrifice, while the Levitic text seems to prescribe specifically instructions for a burnt offering, so καυστόν / ‘ολόκαυστον is the perfectly appropriate word anyway, olah or no olah. It will remind the reader of the burnt offering that lured Poseidon away all the way to Ethiopia in Odyssey I, a much more appropriate/probable association for the Greek-speaking reader who was the target of the translation.

        Be that as it may, we have one more absurdity in “Wiesel’s dark theology”, which is similarly inverted: suggesting that “God’s mighty favour to the people after the sacrifice” would go to the sacrificed. The point in organizing a sacrifice is that the gods are supposed to favor the sacrificer in a holocaust, not the sacrificed meat, the other way ’round. “Dark” I wouldn’t know, but twisted and inverted for sure.

  12. February 5, 2017, 2:18 pm

    Hard to tell which is more Jewish-centric: the Holocaust , or NPR. They split honors this week — not coincidentally.

    It’s always the same pattern for the latter; no matter how many steps one has walked in life, which path one has taken, if you’ve walked through or brushed by or been anywhere near the Holocaust, that’s where the NPR interview starts — the horrors if you’re a Jew, the shame if you’re not.

    Today’s turn was an actor who, I gather, has been in a soap opera for close to a million years, but — just his luck — was born in pre-war Germany. So before the interview could proceed, this actor (didn’t catch his name) had to talk about his Nazi father who died when the actor was 12, some 75 years earlier. That out of the way — on to the nuances of the soap opera!!

    Not a half hour later — a little sooner than is NPR’s norm — a story on some youths who had spray-painted a swastika on a building turns out wasn’t abandoned after all. (Just their luck!!) Charged and convicted, the judge in the case, no doubt harboring a lifelong ambition to utter the words, “Thank you for having me,” sentenced the youths to a visit to the Holocaust Museum where, turns out again, their parents had sentenced them anyway! (Double jeopardy?)

    Postscript (which there aren’t enough of on NPR): Amy Goodman had her own Holocaust show this week, there a guest read words from a plaque on a wall at that very Holocaust museum — the danger signs fascism is approaching. What neither the guest nor Ms. Goodman had the guts to point out: it was a description of Israel to a T.

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      February 11, 2017, 3:13 pm

      Irony escapes all those who drank the Kool-AID of hasbara, zionism

  13. catalan
    catalan
    February 5, 2017, 4:47 pm

    Does anybody know? What had the Jews done to Germany, to turn the Germans so murderously against them? –
    Mooser, first it wasn’t just the Nazis – Ukrainian SS, Hungarian nationalists, Romanians, Dutch, Bulgarians, Croats all contributed to the success of the effort. I think that what we don’t appreciate now is just how multicultural Europe was before WW2. Germans living everywhere in what is now Poland, the Czech Republic, Ukraine, Romania. But also Jews were not just some miniority, they were essentially a major enthnic group, with many large cities, where the cultural life was happening, having either Jewish pluralities or comprising a third of the population – including Vienna, Budapest, Sofia, Krakow, Warsaw, Berlin.
    So you had a group people who were incredible visible, kind of like in New York now, but in many cities. You had a lot of tension, jealousy, anger, and probably on the part of the Jews a sense of superiority, exclusivity, and pride. And then it all just exploded and the Jews could not get organized to defend themselves.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      February 5, 2017, 5:13 pm

      “So you had a group people who were incredible visible, kind of like in New York now, but in many cities. You had a lot of tension, jealousy, anger, and probably on the part of the Jews a sense of superiority, exclusivity, and pride. And then it all just exploded and the Jews could not get organized to defend themselves.”

      Okay, there’s one explanation. The “visible Jew!” Everybody was jealous and Jews “could not get organized to defend themselves” in Germany between WW1 and WW2. Ho-kay, thanks, “catalan”. Great knowledge of Germany and Europe between WW1 and 2, “catalan”

      Anybody got any others? Here’s the question, which I can only assume is predicated on reasonable grounds, since nobody objects:

      “What had the Jews done to Germany, to turn the Germans so murderously against them?” – – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2017/02/jewless-holocaust-israel/comment-page-1/#comment-869691

      • annie
        annie
        February 5, 2017, 11:13 pm

        i think there was likely some toxic brew to cause the explosion, maybe aside from merely tension, jealousy, anger over anothers superiority, exclusivity, and pride. and we have many cities in the US, currently other than NYC, like L.A., chicago, miami, san francisco, philly etc, and the media too — speaking of the incredible visibility of the jewish community. and we have not had a similar reaction at all. perhaps there was something else particular to the time. like for example, if people were hungry and couldn’t eat and they somehow felt that jews were responsible for this. that might cause an explosive reaction. because i just don’t think people become genocidal because they think other people act superior.

        it takes a while to instill hatred in others. for example, the continued racist messaging that’s been going on since 9/11 against the muslim community in the US (thanks to all our rabid zios like david horowitz and so many many more of his ilk in sheep’s clothing). that didn’t exists that i recall when i was a child (although russians slept under my mattress, of course). so after decades of this kind of instilled conditioning of hatred, it seems more like some form of human (or animal) instinct how a society could accept or participate in genociding people.

    • MHughes976
      MHughes976
      February 5, 2017, 5:54 pm

      In the 20s and 30s it was possible for Jews to be disliked from the left as capitalists, therefore in many eyes responsible for the War, and disliked from the right as Bolsheviks. A force with support across the spectrum is hard to stop. That is the kind of support that Zionism now enjoys.

  14. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    February 6, 2017, 12:12 am

    The loss of WWI drove German nationalists nuts. It seems that the nature of the surrender, (meaning: without suffering an apparent military defeat, but conceding everything at the peace table) was the perfect brew for the “stabbed in the back” motif. It drove them nuts. That German insanity used Judeophobia as it’s channel of nuttiness, that would take someone like Freud to interpret. Jealousy, economic competition, seeking the spotlight, those are all rational responses to reality. The nazis frankly were nuts. Sick, destructive, self destructive. Like joni Mitchell said, “or maybe it’s the time of man”. Judeophobia has a rational phase and an irrational phase and like the plague carrying rats, different groups got infected, and like a freak avalanche an emotional breakdown chain reaction, Judeophobia as true insanity.

    • eljay
      eljay
      February 6, 2017, 9:49 am

      || yonah fredman: The loss of WWI drove German nationalists nuts. It seems that the nature of the surrender … was the perfect brew for the “stabbed in the back” motif. It drove them nuts. … ||

      Zionists haven’t even reached the point of surrender and they’re already nuts: Dare rightly to criticize their on-going (war) crimes and they’ll scream anti-Semitism and “Jew hatred” at you even as they continue to commit those (war) crimes. Insane.

      || … The nazis frankly were nuts. Sick, destructive, self destructive. … ||

      Nazis weren’t meant to be role models and yet Zionists seem to have learned a thing or two from them about destructiveness and self-destructiveness.

      • eljay
        eljay
        February 6, 2017, 10:35 am

        || eljay: … Nazis weren’t meant to be role models and yet Zionists seem to have learned a thing or two from them about destructiveness and self-destructiveness. ||

        Hell, they’ve even got the whole “thousand year” (Reich / “Jewish State”) hubris nailed down.

  15. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    February 6, 2017, 12:24 am

    I really try to avoid the term holocaust, because of its religious connotation. Shoah, which means destruction and hurban (h as in hummus) which means destruction are far more preferable terms. If hitler had not been so meshuga with the jews the roma would’ve had a far easier time. In regards to Poland and Ukraine, the conquering of this Slavic territory for German lebensraum was murderous racist colonialism without crossing the sea or the color line. A different type of genocide than that suffered by the jews and the roma. People in France had a deluxe occupation. Poland and Ukraine, quite different.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      February 6, 2017, 11:34 am

      “I really try to avoid the term holocaust, because of its religious connotation.”

      Yes, “Yonah”, Jewish religiosity and observance is a very good reason for Holocaust denial.
      Just what I expected from you.
      We don’t want to confuse the German Nazi murders (bad, bad!) with animal sacrifice (good, holy!)

  16. catalan
    catalan
    February 6, 2017, 8:53 am

    “like for example, if people were hungry and couldn’t eat” Annie
    Only that the mass murders began in earnest with the invasion of Poland, when Germany was at the peak of its power. Even in The interwar years, when the plan was hatched, Germany was wealthier than France and England. After all, Americans did not decide to kill all Jews because of the Great Depression. Hitler actually improved and strengthened the German economy in the 1930’s. Also, the base of Nazi support was not the poor workers but rather the middle class. Poverty and hunger were not the reasons for the decision to extermninate the Jews and exterminate and enslave Poles, Ukrainians, Russians and Belorussians, the build up happened during the second part of the 19 century with Darwin, colonialism, racial theory and the Germanization of Poland.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      February 6, 2017, 12:12 pm

      Another Hitler fan speaks!

    • marc b.
      marc b.
      February 6, 2017, 7:31 pm

      The mass murders in Poland after the blitzkrieg. You mean the attempt to exterminate the Polish nobility and intelligentsia? There was no organized attempt to round up Jews as Jews en masse immediately after the invasion.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        February 11, 2017, 3:27 pm

        Poles have drawn the worse possible card, blamed for hating Jews, racially attacked by Hitler’s forces, made a dumb racial joke of in Jewish entertainment USA. Not to mention they were Soviet targets. The list goes on, down to this day.

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