Feb 19 2018

Bigots, Racists, and Nazis

White as white gets here. I mention this because I’m going to call people out and if I use the word Nazi it’s because I’m allowed to.

It is a source of unending amazement to me that fast on the heels of Trump it’s not only ok to be bigoted against Hispanics (How is Puerto Rico doing? Very badly, thanks for asking. THEY ARE UNITED STATES CITIZENS!), and racist against Blacks (All, y’all- Slavery is BAD! Justifying it by equating skin color to virtue and intelligence is worse.), but also, once again, open anti-Semitism is tolerated.

Now historically anti-Semitism is not an exclusively Germanic fault. Let’s take democratic (sometimes), enlightened, and tolerant France as an example.

In 1894 Captain Alfred Dreyfus was sentenced to life imprisonment for Treason because he supposedly transferred French military secrets to Germany. In fact it was Major Ferdinand Walsin Esterhazy who did it and when conclusive proof was offered in 1896 that this was the case-

(H)igh-ranking military officials suppressed the new evidence, a military court unanimously acquitted Esterhazy after a trial lasting only two days. The Army then accused Dreyfus with additional charges based on falsified documents.

Dreyfus languished on Devil’s Island until 1899 when he was given a new trial where he was convicted and sentenced again (this time for 10 years)!

How could this happen? Esterhazy was a conventional Catholic and Dreyfus was Jewish.

Anti-Semitism was rampant all over Europe and Jews had been persecuted for centuries. When the Nazis adopted systemic anti-Semitism as part of their public program (damn Mexicans stealing our jobs) and acted to murder Jews on an industrial scale (6 Million people is actually the low end of respectable Historians’ estimates) they got a lot of support from people in France (only 25% but still 73,000) and also places like Poland and the Ukraine where the death toll was much, much higher.

Ukraine is now governed by United States supported fascists (thanks Obama and the CIA) and Poland’s new regime of unreconstructed Authoritarians has now made it illegal to openly discuss Polish complicity in the Holocaust.

Polish foreign minister indicates ‘Poles of Jewish ethnicity’ share blame for Holocaust
by E.A. Crunden, Think Progress
Feb 19, 2018

Saturday, (Polish Prime Minister Mateusz) Morawiecki told a conference of world leaders in Munich that Jews had a role in the Holocaust akin to those of other groups, including Nazis themselves.

“You’re not going to be seen as criminal [if you] say that there were Polish perpetrators, as there were Jewish perpetrators, as there were Russian perpetrators as well as Ukrainian perpetrators — not only German perpetrators,” Morawiecki said.

Beata Mazurek, a spokesperson for Poland’s ruling far-right Law and Justice Party (PiS), said the prime minister’s initial comments “told the truth that is difficult for the Israeli side to accept” and asserted that Morawiecki had nothing to apologize for, a sentiment Foreign Minister Czaputowicz echoed a day later.

The back-and-forth over Jewish accountability in the Holocaust is only the latest in an ongoing dispute over Poland’s own role in the genocide. Last month, the country’s PiS-led government approved legislation banning any implication that the Holocaust was led by Poles or that Nazi concentration camps were in any way Polish. Those found in violation face stiff fines and up to three years in prison.

During the Nazi occupation, six death camps were established in Poland. More than 90 percent of the country’s Jewish population — once the largest in Europe — died during the genocide and the population has never fully recovered. While Poland’s government actively resisted the Nazi regime, Jewish Poles experienced persecution and discrimination both before and after the occupation at the hands of their neighbors.

(A)s the target of a genocidal campaign, many Jews were forced to police and report on their neighbors and families. While some went so far as to commit suicide rather than help, others complied. Those who assisted were ultimately sent to their deaths regardless.

“First, the scope of the phenomenon was marginal in the Jewish case – important but marginal – whereas the hostile reaction of many Poles to the persecuted Jews was a norm in most parts of Poland. Poles hated and feared Nazi Germany, but many of them saw the murder of the Jews as a ‘positive’ outcome of the war. Second, there is the question of motives,” Dreifuss said. “While most Jews collaborated hoping to save themselves, their family or part of their community – Poles helped Nazi Germany hunt Jews due to various reasons, among them hatred and financial benefits.”

Poland’s ongoing efforts to distance the country from its dark history are in line with a broader PiS-driven push to revive Polish nationalism. A surge in anti-immigrant and anti-refugee sentiment has spread across the country in recent years, targeting minority communities — including Polish Jews and Muslims — in the process.

During a Polish Independence Day march last year, upwards of 60,000 people marched in a demonstration widely decried as a display of white supremacy and nationalism. Marchers carried signs declaring “Europe will be white” and a number of other slogans, including “Poland Catholic, not secular.” Interior Minister Mariusz Błaszczak later called the march “a beautiful sight.”

Folks, when I say we are living in 1938 Germany I am not kidding.