Friday, November 17, 2006

German Intellectuals Have Got It All Backwards

The Frankfurter Rundschau reports:-

"Kritik an Israel erlaubt"

Politologen fordern neue deutsche Nahost-Politik

Deutschland stehe wegen des Holocaust nicht nur bei Israel, sondern auch bei den Palästinensern in der Pflicht. Das sagen deutsche Wissenschaftler.

Frankfurt a. M. - 25 deutsche Politologen wollen die derzeit bestehenden "besonderen Beziehungen" zwischen Deutschland und Israel ändern. In einem Manifest, das sie erstmals in der Frankfurter Rundschau veröffentlichen, lehnen sie falsch verstandene Rücksichtnahme gegenüber israelischer Politik ab und plädieren für eine "belastungsfähige Freundschaft", in der auch "Kritik ihren Platz hat".

Tragende Kräfte in der deutschen Gesellschaft hätten Scham und Trauer über den Holocaust zu einem "Ritual" verflacht. Dadurch sei ein "problematischer Philosemitismus" entstanden. Die Auswirkungen der Shoa hätten auch viel Leid über die Palästinenser gebracht. Deutschland müsse nun helfen, den palästinensisch-israelischen Konflikt zu entschärfen.

So, what's this all about?

The JPost sent me to the story:-

In a lengthy petition published in the Frankfurter Rundschau regional newspaper Wednesday, the scholars said that, "The roots of this bloody 60-year confrontation in the Middle East are German and European. The Palestinian population doesn't have the responsibility to take on European problems in the Middle East," according to translations in English-language media.

The signers also questioned whether German backing for Israel was causing tension within German society, and objected to German sales of hi-tech weaponry to Israel despite its actions against the Palestinians.

In addition, the petition also requests a "friendship free from past burdens" between the two countries, in which Israel could be criticized, and, according to news accounts, states that "a large part of the German society has turned the shame and grief of the Holocaust into a ceremonial matter. That is how a problematic philo-Semitism has developed in Germany."

Recognizing Palestinian suffering as an outcome of the Holocaust has been a long-time probl;em and even Menachem Begin had to deal with it with Schmidt.

The head of the delegation, Frank Lautenburg, a patrician, soft-spoken gentleman who was shortly to be elected United States Senator for New Jersey, asked if the prime minister would care to elaborate on that. He had heard that the prime minister had had a serious quarrel with the German chancellor, and that, as a consequence, relations between the two countries were strained.

BEGIN STROKED the chin of his gaunt face, and to lend added sincerity to the words he was about to say, leaned across the table from the front edge of his chair and gazed into Lautenburg's eyes with great earnestness.

"It is true, Frank," he said. "I reprimanded Helmut Schmidt in public."

"What had he done? What had he said?"

"He had gone to Saudi Arabia, and he had said in a public statement that Germany had obligations to various peoples, among them the Palestinians, but he made no mention of the Jews.

"I was beside myself with astonishment. Could it be, I said to myself, that he, of all people, had failed to make mention of Germany's obligation to the Jews - and in Saudi Arabia, of all places? So, yes, I told him what I thought of him in public."

"And how did he respond?"

"He demanded an apology, but I refused. I publicly told him that he had shown arrogance and callous disregard of the Jews exterminated by his people in World War II. And I counseled him to take an example from his predecessor, Chancellor Willy Brandt. I told him to do what Brandt did: to go to Warsaw. I told him to go to the site where the Jewish ghetto once stood.

"Go down on your knees, Mr. Schmidt, I told him. Go down on you knees and beg forgiveness of the Jewish people for what your countrymen perpetrated under the Nazi regime against my people, at a time when you, Mr. Schmidt, remained steadfast to the personal oath you had given to Adolf Hitler, as a soldier in the Wehrmacht."

And here's the official version:-

I will not apologize to Mr. Schmidt, either publicly or privately, whatever the conditions he puts.

Mr. Schmidt traveled to Saudi Arabia some time ago. During and after his visit he made some incredible statements, astonishing from every point of view, and particularly so from the standpoint of the head of government of a nation which bears historic responsibility for the extermination of six million Jews, amongst them a million and a half little children. Mr. Schmidt mentioned Auschwitz and said that he acknowledges the obligation of Germany towards a number of peoples - but the Jewish people was not listed amongst them. Mr. Schmidt spoke of Germany's obligation towards the Palestinians and said not a word of Germany's obligation towards the Jewish people.

In reaction to all those statements I said in a speech that according to a report I got, Mr. Schmidt, as a lieutenant in Hitler's army, was among the viewers of a film showing the hanging by piano wire of German officers who had rebelled against the National Socialist regime.

My friend, Dr. Gideon Hausner, Chairman of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Committee, pointed out to me that Lieutenant Schmidt had not participated in the screening of the above film, but he had been invited to and participated in a trial presided over by the infamous Nazi judge Freisler.

I chose to rely upon the information given me by Dr. Hausner, and, accordingly, I informed Bundestag member, Mr. Blumenfeld, that I will not hesitate to admit the error concerning the film. However, participation in the above mentioned Nazi trial is of itself a most grave event in the biography of one of the tens of thousands of German officers during the Holocaust.

I will not apologize to Mr. Schmidt. Rather, I counsel him, speaking as a free man who fought for the continued existence and the liberation of the Jewish people, that he take an example from his predecessor Mr. Brandt, visit Warsaw, go to the site where the Jewish ghetto once stood, go down on his knees and ask the forgiveness of the Jewish people and of all nations loving justice and liberty for what his countrymen perpetrated under the National Socialist regime against my people at the time when Mr. Schmidt remained faithful to the personal oath he had given to Adolf Hitler as a soldier and officer in his army.

The problem is, though, that applauded academics, like Baruch Kimmerling, hold these opinions:-

"...the introduction of the Holocaust into the discourse and the conflict between us and the Palestinians is insufferable because the Palestinians are not an "involved party" to the Holocaust, except in the way that all humanity is involved in it.

The connection between the Jewish Holocaust and the Arab catastrophe exists also in Palestinian historiography, but the context and its meaning is different. The Palestinian complaint on this is familiar and clear. Not Muslims or Arabs but the Christian West, Europeans and Americans, perpetrated a terrible crime against the Jewish people. Some carried out the extermination; others closed their eyes and did nothing to prevent it. After they committed their crimes against the Jews, they washed their hands of responsibility and made the Arab-Oriental people pay the price by helping to dispossess them of their land, thus compounding one crime with another. It is no wonder, therefore, that many Palestinians and other Arabs feel deep resentment towards the West -- a resentment perhaps especially strong among the most "Westernized" of the Arabs.

I have dealt with the inimical issue previously and my position is that if there is a "Holocaust connection", it is that of the links between the Arabs of Palestine and their leader, the Mufti Haj Amin El-Husseini, and German Nazism including active support for the killing of Jews in Europe and the Palestine Mandate as well as causing enough pressure on British diplomats to effectively keep the Jews in Europe where Hitler was better able to murder them.

Their violence prior to the Holocaust was an enabling factor in the post-Holocaust result of 6,000,000 murdered Jews. Had we only had a state previously, one we have full rights to in the area of the historic boundaries of the Jewish national homeland.
More info is located here where you can read this:-

British National Archives unveil presence of Nazi S.S. agents in Mandatory Palestine, working closely with Palestinian leaders

Historical documents in Britain’s National Archives in London show that Nazi Germany attempted to ship arms to Palestinian forces in the 1930s.

A British Foreign Office report from 1939 reports of “news of a consignment of arms from Germany, sent via Turkey and addressed to Ibn Saud (king of Saudi Arabia), but really intended for the Palestine insurgents.” Britain’s chief military officer in Mandatory Palestine also noted reports “regarding import of German arms at intervals for some years now.”

British documents from the same period, and German records photographed by an American spy and sent to the British government, said that a number of Nazi agents were sent to Mandatory Palestine, in order to forge alliances with Palestinian leaders, and urge them to reject a partition of the land between the Jewish and Arab populations.

One Nazi agent, Adam Vollhardt, arrived in Palestine in July 1938, and was reported to have gained strong influence with Arab leaders, meeting with Palestinian leaders throughout 1938. Vollhardt held several meetings with leading Arab politicians and told them “that the Palestine question would be settled to the satisfaction of the Arabs within a few weeks,” adding that “it would be fatal to their (Palestinians’) cause if at this juncture they showed any signs of weakness or exhaustion.”

“Germany was interested in the settlement of the (Palestine) question on the basis of the Arabs obtaining their full demands,” Vollhardt was reported to say to Palestinian leaders, according to a report by the British War Office. Vollhardt also assured Arab leaders that “the Germans could continue to support the Palestinian Arab cause by means of propaganda.”

German documents photographed and sent to Whitehall by an American spy revealed that in 1937, German officials had calculated that “Palestine under Arab rule would… become one of the few countries where we could count on a strong sympathy for the new Germany.”

So, are these Germans really sure that their stance should be that to reject:-

"a 'falsely shown consideration' with regards to Israel"

and to plead
"for a 'more resilient friendship'."

These signatories of the manifesto who stress that it was the Nazi Holocaust which had led to the 'suffering of Palestinians over the past six decades' as well as political experts who hold Germany responsible for 'the transformation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict' are all wrong and have it all backwards.

Whereas this group has warned that unless Berlin treats Israeli and Palestinians equally and in an unbiased way, there would be 'no dialogue on an equal footing', they have not engaged the true relationship between 'Pals' and the antisemitism of Hitler, one that found friendship in the other.

Maybe they are antisemitic, too?

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