A possie in Aussie

April 21, 2009

Ahmadinejad: an old-fashioned Jew hater

Filed under: anti-Semitism,race relations — Nayano @ 12:40 pm
Tags: , ,

Yesterday was  Yom Ha Shoah, the day of commemoration and remembrance of the victims of the Nazi holocaust.  It was also the first day of the UN anti-racism conference that has been boycotted by Australia, among other nations. See Same old demonization

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gave an address that implied that  the genocide was either a half-truth or a complete lie:

“Following World War Two, they (the Jews) resorted to making an entire nation (Palestine) homeless on the pretext of Jewish suffering”. In quotes: Ahmadinejad speech

His virulent anti-Israel statements and comments casting doubt on the Holocaust have prompted fears that his speech could overshadow the primary aim of the conference, to take stock of racial discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance around the world.

The Middle East Quarterly has an excellent article: Deciphering Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust Revisionism demonstrating that this anti-Semitism is an old hatred, not just something engendered by the creation of the state of Israel.

The rights groups say religious discrimination is widespread in Iran, notably affecting Baha’is, Christians, Jews, Sufis, Sunni Muslims, and other minorities, through arbitrary arrests, intimidation and harassment. Rights groups challenge Iran leader at racism meet

At least Andrew Bolt is speaking out against this disgrace. He quotes this disappointing editorial from the Sydney Morning Herald bemoaning Australia’s decision not to attend:

“Much of the campaign by Israel and Jewish diaspora groups against the Durban Review has been jumping at the shadows of what might happen”.

This is a conundrum of my life – how come I can’t stand Andrew Bolt, but he is always there when it is necessary to speak out against anti-Semitism?

Can the left please separate the Palestinian problem from old-fashioned, brutal Jew hatred?


March 30, 2009

Coldness of evil in hot conflicts

Filed under: race relations — Nayano @ 7:48 am
Tags: , ,

Henrik at Eclectic Grounds writes about Dehumanization & Conflict: How soldiers and societies “make” violence just, and gives these insights to explain the seemingly inescapable pattern of blame and violence in the Palestinian/Israeli conflict:

Personal identity and group identity

Victims are never innocent

Moral double standards

The role of the state

The sociology of the army

and gives references for those who want to read more.

I am reminded of Gitta Sereny’s excellent, if chilling works on evil: studies of Mary Bell, a child murderer, Franz Stangl, the commandant of Treblinka, and of  Albert Speer. Chilling in more than a metaphorical sense – my main impression of the subjects of Sereny’s books is that of coldness. They come across as appallingly normal but boring people – the sort of people who leave one cold. This contrasts with the red-hot images of ‘villains’ and ‘monsters’ that are much more easy to deal with, because in our imagination they are so ‘not like us’.

See Migrant workers, the credit crunch & Nazism

Blog at WordPress.com.