"Well actually there aren’t that many examples of a desire to complete annihilate a group based solely on origin and worldwide.... Still, the extermination of innocent civilians with industrial methods on a large scale is fairly unique...."
And Jeffrey Amherst spreading smallpox to the indigenes of North America via blankets was unique, too. Every grotesque crime against humanity is unique in one way or another.
Perhaps the whole process of calculating levels of infamy is wrong-headed to begin with, but if one were inclined to do so, outcome may be a better measure than the particular methods of each individual instance of such crimes.
The nazis intended to erase Jews from the earth. Happily, despite the incalculable viciousness of their ghastly efforts, they failed. Jews prevailed, they thrived, and now enjoy levels of power, wealth and influence unmatched in their history.
The indigenes of North America were systematically slaughtered by Europeans, whose efforts were far more successful. Although the number of deaths may have been lower than those caused by the nazis, although the the slaughter was not industrialized, the effect was closer to what the perpetrators wished - an erasure of a people, their culture, their language, their power.
The enslavement of Africans by Europeans similarly had far more devastating consequences to the victims than did the nazi holocaust against Jews and others. Culture, language, religion - vanished. New identities formed and internalized, identities imbued with negative self-representation. In a word, sociocide.
None of this is meant in any way to mitigate the horrors of the nazis' crimes, only to suggest that rank-ordering assaults on humanity is a more complex business than simply counting the victims or noting the novelty of the methods.
I see Lauder's comments as less encouraging than Phil does. When folks like him talk about a 2SS, they mean a demilitarized Palestine without real sovereignty (i.e., no control over borders, airspace, etc) with the IDF deployed in the Jordan Valley indefinitely, Israel retaining all the colonies that "everybody knows will remain in Israeli hands after peace talks" - that is, the ones with the finest agricultural land, the ones sitting atop the aquifers - and on and on. Disconnected Palestinian Bantustans. And Israeli colonies with sufficient breathing room to expand.
By promoting a 2SS without these specifics, Lauder can pose as a reasonable man who has seen the light and is throwing in the towel - offering serious compromise (not) in the name of peace.
If this sort of 2SS is ratified, you will have an immiserated and isolated Palestinian non-state, penned in by its historical oppressor. Nothing that Israel can't live with. Some breakthrough.
And as far as heaping the blame on the maniac religious settlers, this has always been a favorite ploy of "liberal" Zionists, as though the settlement project was not begun and expanded under Labor governments, as though the brutality of Zionism were not structural, Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett having more in common than not.
Barak is peddling the hoary origin story that Israel began as the project of robust and right-thinking Zionists, tilling the land and bringing civilization to the jungle. Highly moral and wanting nothing more than refuge for themselves and peace with the natives, Zionists were forced to defend themselves again and again from the depredations of the irrationally violent Palestinians - which they did, of course, with utmost devotion to the principles of Just Warfare. And then, the fall from grace, ushered in by the right-wingers.
Sheer horseshit, as any reader of this site is aware. And Barak is right that most of the "advanced" world bought this nonsense at the beginning. Trouble is, he still seems to think they were justified in doing so - the tale, he says, was true.
What would left Zionists do without their right-wing counterparts? ....."You think I'm bad? You should see my cousin Dave!"
The right wingers are happy to cut your head off. The "leftists" do, too, but they give you a coupla Tylenol first. You should be grateful.