At the back of the hill

Warning: If you stay here long enough you will gain weight! Grazing here strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton. And you might like cheese-doodles.
BTW: I'm presently searching for another person who likes cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Friday, March 10, 2006

NETUREI KARTA

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One of the things Europeans (including the Dutch, and therefore also myself, because though my folks have been in the US since before 1635, I am of New York Dutch ancestry, a fluent Dutch speaker, and identify myself as 'Dutch American') have to wrestle with, is their collective role during world war two. [Basically, the sins of the tribe reflect on the individual.]
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One can divide Gentile Europeans under the Nazis into five groups:
Those opposed, who by their opposition were in danger;
Those opposed whose opposition was mostly under the radar;
Those favourably inclined;
Those who actively collaborated;
And then the great group in the centre - those rigidly paralyzed by apathy who neither knew the others nor engaged them.
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The quiescence of most Europeans during the Nazi regime falls into that last category.
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During the war, the Nazis and their collaborators actively sought to extinguish those who resisted, and terrorize those who might give the resistance aid and succour. Those who opposed in their hearts but not in their actions, of course took note, and while their opposition was praiseworthy, by their quivering acquiescence they were also responsible for the crimes of the Nazi regime.
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After the war the active collaborators were mostly sought out (mostly, because if there were few or none to identify them and their crimes, they often escaped unpunished), the attitudes of the favourably inclined were castigated (schoolyard bullies often get whacked, but their helpers and enablers often escape vengeance), and the surviving victims were to a large extent ignored (Jew and Gentile alike), because in order for societies to heal they must be able to relativize trauma.
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Not that there's anything right with that.
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[As might have been said on Seinfeld]
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I mention all of this to highlight the differences between active opposition, passive opposition, apathy, passive fellow-traveling, and active collaboration.
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What must we make of Neturei Karta?
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This morning, both the JROD mailing list and the weekly newsletter from Joods Nederland mention that Neturei Karta is in Teheran lecking the madman Ahmedinejad's achterend.
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[Neturei Karta also recently sent Hamas congratulations on their election victory and expressed hopes for the success of the Islamicist endeavor to destroy Israel bimheira biyameinu.]
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Now, a slight sidetrack. Whenever someone tells a racist joke, they will often try to brush off distaste by saying "I heard this from a ......", where the dot dot dots represent a member of the group who are the target of the joke. Thus attempting to relativize their offense in relaying the joke.
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But it doesn't matter who told the joke or who retells it - the joke is wrong because of its content. The teller is merely the messenger, not the message, and the message is offense.
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When there is no justification for the message, someone who voluntarily becomes the messenger is choosing to identify with the offensive aspect of the message - they tell the joke because it is offensive, not because it is funny.
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In such cases, the joke becomes relativized, but the role of the messenger is accentuated.
They are the offender, and they are the offense.
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So, what must we make of Neturei Karta?
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Well, clearly Neturei Karta are active collaborators.
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And like the tellers of offensive jokes, the sonei-yisroel side will cite them ad nauseum to justify their point of view, and to show that they actually "are not anti-Semitic, even some Jews hate Israel, and in any case it is okay to oppose Zionism".
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Surely you know this sentence: "Some of my BEST friends are black!"?
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Just as the joke prefaced by saying "I heard this from a ......", this too is an attempt to relativize.
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Ineffectively, it says "don't look at me, it was one of YOU guys - him you should blame ("and really, I am so much less blameworthy, because I have 'perspective' or broadmindedness or I am merely saying what he told me to say - and in any case he is worse than I am").
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Which is rather like admitting that you bought the gun, bought the bullets, bought the coffin and the getaway car, invited the victim over, and told Bubba what the victim looked like and when he would be there - but Bubba is the murderer, hang him.
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There were collaborators in Europe and Uncle Toms in the US. There were black men in the Confederate Army and traitors in the north. Many average Chinese took part in the brutalities of the Cultural Revolution. Russians turned in their relatives to Stalin's secret police. East-Germans collected rewards for betraying their neighbors.
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Brutal regimes standardly make use of informers and willing executioners.
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And the perpetrators of the Cambodian horrors, who have largely gone unpunished, were once enthusiastically cheered on by many fervent anti-Imperialists in Europe and the United States.
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Neturei Karta are not just opposed to Israel - they actively collaborate with organizations who are working to destroy Israel and wipe her off the map.
They are the Henning Kloppers, NSB members, and willing volunteers from occupied Europe who joined the SS.
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They are the acme of odium.
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Understandable, then, that they have become the pet-Jews of Hamas and Ahmedinejad.
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For civilized people, Neturei Karta are outcastes.
As are Neturei Karta's allies.
Those who speak approvingly of them are pollution.
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Especially those who would use Neturei Karta to claim perspective and broadmindedness.
Or the fervent "anti-Imperialists" who enthusiastically cheer them on.
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--- - --- - --- - --- - ---
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Note for non-Jewish readers: Neturei Karta's opposition to the state of Israel is based on the reasoning that a secular state in the land will delay the coming of the Messiah. So from Neturei Karta's point of view, first Israel must be destroyed. Only then will the Tishbite bring us the son of David.
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They are not the only ones who, because of Messianic reasoning, oppose the state of Israel.
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But they are the only ones who actively seek out the company of gangsters and murderers, and actively aid and abet them.
The great thing about freedom of speech is that it allows people like these to put themselves beyond the pale, and by their actions make themselves untouchable. They redefine filth, and make themselves the very definition of it. And we must treat them accordingly.
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1 Comments:

  • At 1:12 PM, Blogger morfel01 said…

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